Turkey Sate Eggrolls

Turkey and sate probably don’t seem like they should go together, and at first, when I made these, I wasn’t sure how they would taste. I’m also not a big fan of cabbage! I was pleasantly surprised that I actually liked these.

Turkey Sate Eggrolls


  • 1½ lbs. ground turkey
  • 1 Chinese or Napa cabbage, shredded
  • 4 carrots, julienned
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tsp sate seasoning
  • 2 – 3 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 package eggroll or lumpia wrappers, 30 pieces
  • Oil for deep frying
  • Peanut dipping sauce


Heat olive oil in a large wok over medium-high heat.  Add julienned carrots and cook until crisp-tender. Add ground turkey and sate seasoning to wok and cook until turkey is no longer pink. Stir in shredded cabbage and soy sauce, and cook until cabbage is wilted, about 5 minutes.

Drain eggroll filling in a colander and let cool for 1 hour before rolling into eggroll wrappers.

Place ¼ cup of filling in the center of each eggroll wrapper. Fold bottom corner over filling and fold sides toward center. Moisten top corner with water and roll up tightly to seal.

To cook the eggrolls, heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Fry eggrolls a few at a time for 3-4 minutes each side, or until golden brown. Do not crowd the skillet. Drain eggrolls on paper towels and serve with peanut dipping sauce.

Recipe from http://www.thegeekhomestead.com

I thought I would switch up my cooking/baking posts with recipes a little bit and put the recipe first. That way it is easier to find.

I wasn’t able to get the best pictures of these, so I apologize in advance for them!

A bag of coleslaw mix can probably used as a substitute for the cabbage and carrots and would also be a faster alternative! I had bought a napa cabbage specifically for this recipe though, so I went ahead and used it.


I used sate seasoning from Penzey’s Spices. Since I know not everyone will have this in their spice cabinet, I went ahead and found a possible alternative that can be mixed from spices you might have already.

Satay Seasoning spice blend

I usually use Pamana lumpia wrapper if I can get it. It is so much easier to peel than the other brands I’ve tried!

The eggroll filling before the cabbage is cooked.

I did not use the whole Napa cabbage in this batch. I should have! I ended up with not enough filling and was only able to make 25 eggrolls instead of the 30 I wanted.

After letting the filling sit for about an hour, it was time to roll.

1/4 cup filling in the center of the wrapper.
Fold up that bottom corner over the filling
Fold the right and left corners over the center.
Moisten the top corner with water and roll it up, tucking the filling in firmly as you go but not so tightly that you break the wrapper.
Look at that neat little bundle! It will fry up nice and brown now!
This picture is actually from a previous batch of these eggrolls I made. And surprise! I baked these in the toaster oven for about 15 minutes after spraying their tops with cooking spray. They aren’t quite the same as when you fry them, but they were still nice and crispy.

I don’t have peanut sauce on hand so I had Josh mix up the peanut sauce for me using peanut butter. I didn’t have a chance to make one up myself so I found a recipe that was pretty easy.

Peanut Dipping Sauce

I served these with the peanut dipping sauce and hot brown rice. I know I liked them, but I’m not sure about my kids. They like my plain meat eggrolls better I think!



Salton Sea – Western Shores

The Salton Sea is California’s largest lake, but you might also call it an engineering accident. This 350 square mile body of water was created in 1905 when a diversion of the Colorado River in Baja California to irrigate land in Imperial County went wrong. The flow of the Colorado River overwhelmed the banks of an engineered canal and the resulting overflow of water flowed into the Salton Basin for two years, creating the Salton Sea. It was 1907 before the mistakes could be corrected and the course of the Colorado River controlled.

At first, in the 1950s, the Salton Sea was a magnet for tourism and water recreation, but over the years, the increased salinity and pollution of the water and the smell of dead fish have caused the towns located on the shores of the sea to shrink in population. The water of the Salton Sea is 5 times saltier than seawater and only a few species of fish now survive in its waters.

We visited the Salton Sea at Salton City, a once hopeful resort town. It was about a 45 minute drive from Borrego Springs and the roads weren’t in the best condition.

This beach was private property so we weren’t able to go walk out onto the sand here. The first thing you notice when you get out of the car is the smell. It was so bad it gave most of us a headache afterward. It was also very, very windy!

The Salton Sea does serve as a migratory stopover for birds. We only saw a few seagulls while we were there.

It took us about 20 minutes just to find a place where we could actually walk down to the shore on public land. There were no signs anywhere and it seems like there is no tourist industry at all. We drove around in circles many times and ended up at quite a few dead ends!


We finally found what must have once been a public beach. There was a sign covered in graffiti in the parking circle that said it was open to public use sunrise to sunset. It looked like no one had been in the area in a long, long time.
I really hope the graffiti on this doesn’t say anything awful… Even the graffiti is old. It looks like it’s from 2008 maybe?
I have never seen water this color. It was black and almost forbidding. You don’t want to go swimming in that!
Josh and 3 of my boys went down to the shoreline. From what they told me, it was not a pleasant experience. I’m not sure what the clouds in the distance are that over the water. Maybe it’s water vapor from the lake.
The Salton City golf course… or driving range? Or both.
Another view of the golf course.


I wonder if this was a tilapia.


The shores were littered with dead fish. The smell in the air was mostly dead fish and even some sulfur. Because of the increasing salinity of the water and algal blooms, the fish die in mass quantities.
Josh said the sand wasn’t really sand. They were walking on crushed shells.
In this picture, you can see a few lenticular clouds forming in the distance. They are also called UFO clouds. We saw quite a few more on our way home. Probably because of the rain heading toward the desert over the mountains.
It was quite an experience to go from the hot, windy desert to the rainy, cold mountains!
Of course, we had to stop in at Julian on our way home for some apple pie at the Julian Pie Company. We were there right before closing time. Their cinnamon ice cream and Dutch apple pie are awesome. The kids like their pie crust cookies.

The Salton Sea was definitely our most interesting adventure that day. In fact, someday we would like to drive to a part of the southeastern shore, near a place called Salvation Mountain in Niland, California.

Visiting Salton City was almost like seeing what an apocalypse would do to a town. In fact, an episode of the TV series Life After People examines this former resort town and its abandoned tourism industry.

2018 would probably be the point of no return for the Salton Sea if nothing is done to save it. It looks like there may be some state funding going toward saving the Salton Sea. We are only two years from that point of no return, so we will see what happens.


Follow-up post is here.

We have a Facebook page.

Note: I am a bit flabbergasted by how many times this has been shared as an article. It was never meant as an article but was only supposed to be a blog post finishing a short series I wrote about a family day trip we took to the desert – Borrego Springs – Wildflowers and Borrego Springs – Galleta Meadows. There are inaccuracies in this blog post, but I am going to leave it the way it is. I am writing a follow-up blog post that will correct these inaccuracies and detail some of the ways that have been presented to save the Salton Sea. I hope to have it posted within a week.

Borrego Springs, California – Galleta Meadows Estate

We were supposed to be in Borrego Springs to look for wildflowers. After our hike through Little Surprise Canyon, we were driving to Henderson Canyon Road to find more wildflowers when we were distracted by these metal sculptures in the distance. We had happened upon part of Galleta Meadows Estate and the Sky Art installation, owned by philanthropist Dennis Avery, who passed away in 2012, and created by artist Ricardo Breceda. Admission is free! I think it is wonderful that Dennis Avery was willing to share these sculptures with those of us visiting Borrego Springs. We spent so much time roaming around looking for more sculptures (we should have picked up a map of the sculptures at the visitor center!) that our little scavenger hunt kept us from continuing our wildflower hunt.

A herd of elephants in a dust storm! The effect was a little bit eerie!
It was very windy while we were out in the desert, which is why we ended up not hiking as much as we wanted. The wind kicked up a lot of mini-sandstorms while we were looking at the sculptures.


The scorpion is what caught our eye while we were driving by. I am so glad we stopped in spite of all the sand flying around! I was even able to get in a little bit of a science lesson. While we were out looking at these sculptures, we kept getting caught in sand clouds that generated static electricity. So when we touched each other or the car, we got a little bit of a shock!


My oldest son was fascinated by the dust devils. Here is one that we saw just past this row of dead trees.


This one was my favorite of all the sculptures. It was huge! We stayed at this one a while. My kids had fun playing around it, except for Gwen. She stood by me the whole time, trying to keep her hair from flying around her face.


These historical markers are scattered all around the property. I think it is about 3 square miles of land.


I thought these were giant sloths, but maybe they are a relative. I wasn’t too fond of all the sand and wind myself so I tended to stay in the car after we visited the serpent.


These sculptures are incredibly detailed! There are over 100 of them on the property. We didn’t see nearly enough of them.


This looks like a kind of raptor to me. My boys loved these. They got out of the car to see them.

We are hoping to make a trip to see the desert wildflowers every year, so hopefully next time we are in town, we can find the rest of the sculptures.


We have a Facebook page. 

Just a quick post…

I’ve been AWOL yet again with posting about baking! There are a few things I’d like to share even though I have no good pictures or yummy recipes to link.

First, the Hawaiian Sweet Bread I use, yes, the one that makes 3 loaves of bread, makes decent cinnamon rolls! I baked Hawaiian dinner rolls for Easter Sunday lunch at my  wonderful In-laws’ house and using the whole recipe for dinner rolls would have made way too many! I’m sure my kids wouldn’t have minded if I made too many, but I think they liked what I ended up baking much better. 

Josh said I would regret not taking pictures of the breakfast rolls, and he was right. I should learn to listen to him, shouldn’t I? I was kind of in a rush though on Saturday and wanted out of the kitchen as soon as possible!

I made 3 kinds of breakfast rolls: cinnamon, maple, and chocolate chip. I also made them mini sized so that the kids could try each flavor without getting too full. 

I used one third of the recipe for the dinner rolls and the other two thirds I used for breakfast rolls. I just estimated on most of the ingredients. Here is what I used for each after rolling each part into about a 12″ x 6″ rectangle. 

Cinnamon rolls – butter/margarine spread onto the rectangle, sprinkle with brown sugar, then sprinkle with cinnamon. Don’t be shy with the sugar! Roll up jelly-roll style and slice. Place rolls in a greased baking pan, allowing sides of rolls to touch.

Maple rolls – butter and margarine spread onto rectangle, sprinkle with maple sugar and raw sugar. This one was probably the lightest on flavor; I need to figure out how to get more maple flavor into it. Roll up and slice. Place in pan.

Chocolate chip rolls – butter/margarine spread onto dough rectangle, sprinkle with raw sugar and mini chocolate chips. Roll up and slice. Place in pan.

Since I had never made these before, I had to figure out the baking time myself. The oven was set at 350 degrees F and I think I baked them for about 20 minutes. It could have been as long as 30 minutes. I was looking for the tops of the rolls to brown. 

Once the rolls cooled, I frosted them with the Cream cheese frosting I used on copycat Cinnabons.

This batch of dough made about 46 mini rolls. Some of those went with me to the church nursery Easter Sunday morning for the workers and the rest we had at Easter Sunday breakfast. My kids had fun picking out the flavor they wanted to try.

I will probably make these again since I love making Hawaiian bread. I will try to come up with a better post with pictures then and possibly a recipe.


Second, I am hoping to attempt a 3-day macaron marathon sometime soon. I wanted to do that this week since I have given my kids a week off from homeschooling, but I am not sure if it will happen. The macarons are calling me though so we will see!


Lego Challenge Tuesday – on Saturday: Build an Easter Scene

This past Tuesday’s Lego Challenge at Gather Love Grow was to build an Easter scene! Thank you so much for the challenge, Isabelle!

Easter and Christmas are our most important holidays as Christians. At Christmas, we celebrate our Saviour’s birth, and at Easter, we remember His death, burial, and resurrection. He did not stay dead! Because of what Jesus did for us on the cross and His resurrection from the dead, we can know for sure that we will go to heaven to be with Him when we pass from this earth and into eternity.

“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” Romans 10:9

I asked my boys to build the tomb, the garden, and the people who came to the tomb after the stone was rolled away. They somewhat followed my instructions.

Matthias built the garden though Ian did add one flower, Ian built the two mini figures – John and Peter, and Corran built the tomb. I forgot to specify the stone being rolled away, and I asked for two angels and Mary Magdalene. Ian couldn’t find any white clothes for the angels so he didn’t built them. I do like that one of the mini figures seems to be holding a torch.

Next time, I will need to be more specific in my instructions so it is unmistakably an Easter scene.  They did a good job with what I told them though.

I hope you all have a blessed Easter Sunday!

“He is not here: for he is risen, as he said.” Matthew 28:6a


Saturday in the Garden: 03/26/2016

This morning I replaced the ceiling fan in my boy’s bedroom.  When I replaced my daughter’s fan it took me many hours.  The original electrical box that the fan hung on was to small for the bracket on the new fan.  I ended up spending a lot of time in the attic replacing that electrical box and bracket assembly.  Today I got lucky and the new fan fit on the old box.  I think it took me about an hour to replace the fan.  Since that ended up being quicker and easier then expect, I was able to spend some time in the yard.

I was finally able to get the last of the raised garden beds planted.  I am probably a couple of weeks behind where I should be at, but our weather here is pretty forgiving so my plants should be OK.

I did take some pictures of seedling.  I enjoy watching the plants grow, and I find the changes in the leaves and the size of the plant fascinating.  Many of my plants are starting to sprout.  Our weather has been in the upper 70s most days lately, and that makes for happy seeds.

We have a lemon tree that is producing more lemons then we can easily use right now.  When we moved into the house two years ago the tree was pretty sad.  It had been neglected for year and it showed. The lemons on the tree looked like mutants.  They were oddly shaped and didn’t taste good at all.  I pruned the tree, watered, and fertilized it, and now it is a happy tree.  If you live in a place where citrus will grow, then I highly suggest planting some trees.  Citrus trees do not need much care to get good results.

I planted garlic all over my yard in the fall.  I didn’t know what parts of the yard it would grow well in, so I figured I would try all of them.  Most of the garlic sprouted and I believe I will have much garlic in a few months.  These are pictures from a few of the places I planted garlic.

Now for a few random pictures.

One of the fennel plants that have sprouted after I let a fennel go to seed last year.
Mizuna flowers.
This blood orange tree is the first thing I planted when we moved in. The first year it got eaten by something and almost died. The second year my neighbor’s chickens got to it and at its buds and some of the new leaves. This year it is finally doing well and growing.


Spring is here and plants are growing.  It is rewarding to see the plants start to grow.  Of course the anticipation is enough to make a person crazy.  Why can’t those tomatoes grow faster so I can have a fresh tomato?


Borrego Springs, California – Wildflowers

The second week of March is supposed to be the best weekend to go to the desert and look at the wildflowers. We hadn’t been to the desert during the spring wildflowers for almost seven years!

Borrego Springs wildflowers – March 2009

With this year being an El Nino year, we were hoping that the wildflowers would be blooming like crazy. We still found a lot of wildflowers but they weren’t as obvious as the last time we were there. We had to look for them this time! When we stopped by the visitor center to pick up a map of the area, the ladies there told us that in spite of El Nino they had only gotten 3 inches of rain this year. The average rainfall by this time is 7 inches.

Borrego Springs – March 2016 – My boys loved the way the hills looked. They said it looked like a painting.

We decided to check out a few of the trails in the area. Because of the high winds though, we were only able to hike one small trail called Little Surprise Canyon. There will be a lot of pictures from now on in this post.

Heading out on the trail. Gwen, the youngest, is riding in the hiking backpack Josh is wearing. Ian, Rhys, and now Gwen have ridden in that backpack.

This was a good trail for kids. It wasn’t too long. The trail “next door” to this one is called Hellhole Canyon and that would have been a 6 mile hike. If the wind hadn’t been so bad, we probably would have hiked at least part of it.

All of our kids are rock hounds so they were also picking up rocks to take home.

The wildflowers were so tiny that it was very easy to miss them. I kind of liked them this way though. The purple flower is purple sage, and the tiny yellow flowers beside it are a kind of poppy.
This is ocotillo. They are everywhere here! And grow very tall.
Desert lavender – my focus was a little off on these. I’m still figuring out how to use my camera.


Yellow poppies. These were so nice to see everywhere. The yellow is cheerful.
Matthias and I found this flower. It was the only one of its kind we saw during our hike. It’s called a ghost flower because of the yellowish-white almost translucent petals. It was so small that we could have easily stepped on it!
Rock daisy – I didn’t see too many of these either
I always love to see cactus flowering. This is a barrel cactus.
Probably my favorite flower I saw during our hike. Beavertail cactus. The hot pink flowers are easy to see from very far away!
It was so fun to go out on a hike with my family. I think it has been a while! Our last hike together was probably in the Petrified Forest in Arizona. The boys had a great time exploring rocks, dirt, and the little canyons here and there.
We probably went through every color of the rainbow during our hike. This is indigo bush.
Josh said this might be a packrat nest. I’m glad we didn’t see any rats!
Desert chicory – this one caught my eye because it was all by itself by a rock.
This yellow wave of flowers is called brittle bush I think. It is a type of sunflower.
At first I thought these were ocotillo flowers, but then I realized that they weren’t the right shape. These are chuparosa.
I love blue flowers. These are wild heliotrope. Very small flowers. I’m glad I was able to get a picture of them.
This is teddy bear cholla cactus. It looks cute but you don’t want to hug it!
We drove through the mountains to get to the desert. There was an overlook of Borrego Springs you could stop at. It was interesting to be able to look down on the town like this.
In the far distance in this picture, you can see a thin line of water that is the Salton Sea. It is about 30 miles away from Borrego Springs. On a whim, we decided to drive there after we were finished with our adventure in Borrego Springs. I’ll write about the Salton Sea in another post. Now that was an adventure!

Josh took some pictures too. So I’m going to talk about a few of those.

You can see in this picture where water obviously runs down the mountain during a rainstorm. I was hoping it might rain while we were in Borrego Springs, but it ended up raining later, while we were driving home!
A panoramic photo Josh took of our hike at Little Surprise Canyon.

Thanks for coming along with us on our hike in the desert! My next post about Borrego Springs will be on some metal sculptures we stumbled across in town. We were going to look for more wildflowers but ended up spending the rest of our time at the sculptures