Eastern Sierras – July 30-Aug 4, 2020

30 mile loop, 5 night backpack, South Lake, Bishop Pass, Dusy Basin, JMT, cross country Pot Luck Pass, Knapsack Pass, return Bishop Pass to South Lake with Patsy, Richard, and Afra,. Side trip to challenging Mt Sill, elevation 14,154 feet.

The flowers. So many gorgeous flowers.

Posted in Peak Bagging San Diego County

San Gorgonio plus 10+1 – July 22-25, 2020

San Bernardino Eleven Peaks plus 1 with Patsy, Richard, Afra, Beth, Trixie, myself

1. San Gorgonio Mountain 11,499
2. Jepson Peak 11,205
3. Anderson Peak 10,840
4. Charlton Peak 10,806
5. Little Charlton Peak 10,696
6. San Bernardino East Peak 10,691
7. Shields Peak 10,680
8. San Bernardino Peak 10,649
9. Alto Diablo 10,563
10. Little Dobbs Peak 10,520
11. Dobbs Peak 10,459
12. Gerhardt Peak 8,578

Posted in Peak Bagging San Diego County

Hot Chocolate Mix

Hot or cold this is a nice drink, especially for camping and backpacking!

120g Confectioners’ Sugar*
60g Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
100g Nonfat Dry Milk Powder
1/4 teaspoon Fine-grain Salt
Pinch Cayenne Pepper, optional
1 Splenda packet, optional

Whisk together all ingredients, use 2 tablespoons per 8 ounces hot or cold water.

* I needed a little more sweetener and added 1 packet of Splenda per serving; Splenda packs a lot of sweetness for its weight.

Posted in Beth's Recipes

Chocolate Chip Cookies – Bang Bang Style

2 1/4 Cups AP Flour
1/2 Cup Rolled Oats
1 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 lb Butter (2 sticks)
3/4 Cup White Sugar
3/4 Cup Brown Sugar
2 tsps Vanilla
2 Eggs
2 Cups Chocolate Chips (Ghirardelli 60% Cacao Bittersweet quality or better)
1 1/2 Cups Walnuts, chopped

Sift together flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon then add oats and blend with whisk; set aside.

In a separate bowl cream butter with mixer until lemony yellow, about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add white and brown sugar and continue creaming mixture on medium speed until it is smooth and lump free, about 1 minute. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add eggs, one at a time, and vanilla and beat on low speed for 15 seconds, or until they are fully incorporated. Do not over-beat. Scrape down sides of bowl.

On low speed, add sifted flour mixture. Beat slowly until all of the flour is incorporated. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add chocolate chunks and mix in.

Plop dough down on the middle of a sheet of parchment, creating a log about 1 1/2 inches wide and 12 inches long. Fold parchment over, creating a sausage. Chill for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight. (Dough will keep if tightly wrapped, in the refrigerator for 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 1 month. Thaw frozen dough at room temperature for 30 minutes before slicing.) This recipe will make FOUR logs of cookie dough, about 12 small cookies.

Heat oven to 325 degrees with convection, with the rack positioned in the lower third of the oven. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

Using a serrated knife, slice chilled dough into 1-inch-thick rounds and place them 2 inches apart, in staggered rows, on parchment-lined cookie sheet.

Place in oven. At 5 minutes remove and bang (tap) the cookie sheet on the oven door or countertop to force the cookies to fall (stop rising). Place in oven. Repeat at 2 minutes more, then remove cookies at another 2 minutes or time where cookies are browned nicely.

Slide parchment off baking sheet onto cooling rack. Allow cookies to cool for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Posted in Beth's Recipes

Lemon Pasta with Zucchini and Feta

2 cloves Garlic
1 whole Zucchini
16 ounces small shaped Pasta
1 Tablespoon Butter
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
2 whole Lemons, Juiced
½ cup Feta Cheese
Fresh Parsley (optional)

Mince the garlic and slice the zucchini along its length for 4 quarter then slice. Cook the pasta according to package directions.

In a medium sauce pan, melt the butter and olive oil over low heat. Add in the minced garlic and lemon juice, and sauté for 1-2 minutes or until the garlic is tender. Add in the zucchini and cook 3-4 minutes longer until the zucchini begins to brown and has soaked in the lemon flavor.

Toss the lemon-zucchini mixture with the cooked pasta, and then sprinkle the feta cheese over the top. Garnish with the parsley.



Posted in Beth's Recipes

Basil Pesto made by hand

25 grams of basil leaves (already washed and dried)
1 small clove of garlic
50 ml of extra virgin olive oil (approx)
35 grams of grated Parmesan cheese
15 grams of grated Pecorino cheese (or 50 grams of grated Parmesan cheese if you don’t have Pecorino cheese)
15 grams of pine nuts
salt to taste


Chop Ingredients

Start chopping the garlic along with about 1/3 of the basil leaves. Once this is loosely chopped add more basil, chop some more, add the rest of the basil, chop some more. Scrape and chop, gather and chop. At this point the basil and garlic should be a very fine mince. Add about half the pine nuts, chop. Add the rest of the pine nuts, chop. Add half of the grated cheese, chop. Add the rest of the cheese, and chop. Add salt to taste. Lightly press all the ingredients into a small container and cover with olive oil. Place it in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it.

Before serving stir to incorporate the olive oil into the basil. Add a splash of pasta water to thin, if needed for better coverage.


Posted in Beth's Recipes

Creamy Chocolate Frosting

• 2 3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
• 6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
• 6 tablespoons butter
• 5 tablespoons evaporated milk (whole milk, 1/2 & 1/2 combo work well)
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a medium bowl, sift together the confectioners’ sugar and cocoa, and set aside.

In a large bowl, cream butter until smooth, then gradually beat in sugar mixture alternately with evaporated milk (or milk combo). Blend in vanilla. Beat until light and fluffy. If necessary, adjust consistency with more milk or sugar or cocoa powder.

The recipe is enough to cover this 9″ double layer cake.

Posted in Beth's Recipes

Chocolate Cake

This chocolate cake is easy to make, rich, dense cake similar to a soufflé cake.

• 2 cups white sugar
• 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
• ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
• 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
• 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 2 eggs
• 1 cup milk
• ½ cup vegetable oil
• 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
• 1 cup boiling water

• Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour two nine inch round pans.

• In a large bowl, stir together the sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla, mix for 2 minutes on medium speed of mixer. Stir in the boiling water last. Batter will be thin. Pour evenly into the prepared pans.

• Bake 30 to 35 minutes in the preheated oven, until the cake tests done with a toothpick. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

Frost with this rich and creamy frosting

Posted in Beth's Recipes

Grilled Chicken Drumsticks


Chicken Drumsticks
BBQ Sauce of choice


Pat drumsticks dry with paper towels, place on plate and put uncovered plate in the refrigerator for up to 6 hours. This will help dry the skin for crispier BBQ.

Preheat grill to get a surface temp of 450° – 500° and remove chicken from the fridge while grill is heating. Salt and Pepper both sides of the drumsticks.

Place drumsticks on heated grill. Flip every 5 minutes. Cook for 20 – 35 minutes (depends on size of drumsticks). Cover in BBQ sauce the last 5-10 minutes. Drumsticks are done when they reach internal temperature of 180 degrees.

Let rest 5-10 minutes. Serve.


Posted in Beth's Recipes

Spaghetti Sauce

1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
1 large white onion diced
5 cloves garlic minced
2 28 ounce cans whole tomatoes
1 can tomato paste
1/2 cup white wine
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 teaspoon ground oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 pound sausage link, sliced (optional)
1 pound mushrooms, diced, sauteed (optional)
1 bell pepper, diced, sauteed (optional)

In a large pot over medium heat, add olive oil and sausage. Use a spoon to break up the meat into small pieces. Add in onion, garlic, and cook until meat is well browned, stirring constantly. Add tomato paste and continue to cook, stirring until the tomato paste has turned a deeper red color, about 2 minutes. Stir in sugar, fresh basil, fennel, oregano, 1 teaspoon salt, and pepper. Using your hands, crush the whole tomatoes and add them to the pot along with the wine. Stir well and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and simmer 1-4 hours, stirring occasionally.

Posted in Beth's Recipes