Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Darcie's Layered Taco Dip

For a quick recipe when company comes, you can't get any easier than this.

Darcie's Layered Taco Dip

Line a plate or pie pan with aluminum foil.
In order given, layer the following ingredients:
8 ounces sour cream
1 jar your favorite taco salsa
8 ounces shredded Cheddar cheese
1-2 tomatoes, chopped
1-2 green onions, chopped

Chill until use, then serve with tortilla chips.

Tips: You can add sliced black olives, shredded lettuce, and even jalapenos to this dip.

Darcie's Sauerkraut Salad

Darcie is married to cousin Jerry and they have two sons,Chris and Nick. Darcie enjoys family and friends and wanted to share a few of her recipes.This one is a nice change of pace from regular slaw and will keep well in the fridge for a couple of weeks as the vinegar acts as a preservative. This can also be frozen and brought out later for use when needed.

Darcie's Sauerkraut Salad

1 pound 11 ounce can of sauerkraut, drained
2 cups celery, chopped fine
1 cup green pepper, chopped fine*
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil*
1/2 cup apple cider vinegat (unpasteurized, like Bragg's)*

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, cover and marinate overnight. Stir before serving.

* You can use a mixture of green, yellow, and red peppers.
* The original recipe just called for 'oil' but I am adding a healthy oil.
* The original recipe just called for 'vinegar' and I am adding a healthy alternative.
** 1/2-3/4 cup finely chopped onions or scallions can be added to this salad, if you like.You can also shred some carrot for more color and vitamin content.

Jill Matheson's Cherry Bread

This recipe came from my uncle's wife who shared it with me almost 20 years ago. Oh my gosh! I made this and it is fabulous! The next time I make it, I may experiment and add a cherry glaze over the top made of powdered sugar, cherry juice, and a drop of almond flavoring, but it is delicious just as it is. It is addictive. I highly recommend making this!

Jill Matheson's Cherry Bread

2 cups unbleached flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 jar (10 ounces) maraschino cherries, drained, reserve juice, and quarter cherries
Orange juice

1 stick butter, softened*
1 cup sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2-2/3 cup walnuts or pecans, chopped

In small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
Drain the cherries, reserving the juice in a 1 cup liquid measure, adding enough orange juice to make 2/3 cup; set aside.
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar till light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and beat well. Add the dry ingredients alternately with the juice until well-blended. Fold in the chopped cherries and nuts. Grease and flour a 9" x 5" loaf pan (or two 8" x 4" pans) and pour in batter, smoothing top. Sprinkle top with sugar. Bake at 325 degrees for 60 to 75 minutes, or till tests done with a toothpick.
Allow to cool for 10 minutes, then invert onto a wire rack and let cool completely. Freezes well.

* Original recipe called for margarine, but I changed to make it more healthy.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Jill Matheson's Honey BBQ Wings

Jill is married to my uncle Jerry, and she enjoys cooking for him and her two sons, who are now grown. She shared this recipe with me and it is really good!

Jill's Honey BBQ Wings

20 chicken wings
2 cups oil*
2 cups flour (unbleached)
2 Tbls. Lawry's Seasoned Salt
2 Tbls. Mrs. Dash (Regular season)
1 tsp. garlic powder
1- 18 ounce bottle Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ Sauce*
1/4 cup honey

Mix all dry ingredients in large Ziploc bag; set aside.
Put 2 cups oil in large frying pan, heat on medium heat till hot (350 degrees).
Shake 4-6 wings at a time in flour mixture and fry in hot oil till crispy.
Place wings in large casserole dish with lid or use foil.
Combine BBQ sauce and honey, then brush over wings. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes covered, then uncover and bake another 30 minutes. Serve with favorite foods.

* Use a safe oil such as virgin Palm oil for the frying.
*Avoid high fructose corn syrup by using a brand that does not contain HFCS or use a homemade version.

Lulu's Banana Split Cake

This recipe was given to Lulu by her late mother-in-law, Anita Clark, who was a fabulous cook. This is rich, delicious, and sure to get raves.

Lulu's Banana Split Cake

2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup melted butter*
1 cup (2 sticks) butter*
2 eggs**
16 ounces powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
16 ounces crushed pineapple in its own juice
4 bananas***
1- 8 ounce whipped topping****
1/2 cup chopped nuts
Maraschino cherries (optional)

Combine graham cracker crumbs with 1/2 cup melted butter, and press in bottom of 9" x 13" pan.
Cream 1 cup butter, 2 eggs, sugar, and vanilla and spread over crust.
Drain pineapple, reserving juice to drink, and spread pineapple over creamed mixture. Slice 4 bananas over pineapple.  Spread whipped topping over top and sprinkle with nuts. Add a few maraschino cherries if used.
Chill 8 hours before serving.

*Original recipe called for using 1 cup margarine, but to make this heart healthy I've replaced with butter.
** Do NOT use store-bought eggs raw. For this recipe use farm fresh eggs to greatly reduce possibility of salmonella
***Dip bananas in fresh lemon juice to reduce incidence of browning and keep fresh looking before adding to the cake.
****Original recipe called for Cool Whip, but a better alternative would be to whip your own cream or use Reddi Whip.

Lulu's Death By Chocolate

YUM! The name says it all.

Lulu's Death By Chocolate

1 box chocolate cake mix
1 large can chocolate pudding
1 large tub chocolate whipped cream (Cool Whip) or use regular Cool Whip
6 Heath bars, crushed

Make cake mx according to box, let cool.
In large casserole or trifle dish, start with cake by crumbling 1/4 of cake and then layer 1/4 of pudding, 1/4 of whipped topping, and 1/4 of Heath bars. Continue to layer like this till done. Refrigerate till cool, about 4-8 hours.

Tips: You can make your own cake.
         Use instant pudding made with milk for better taste.
         Use chocolate Reddi Whip for real whipped cream.

Lulu's Mexican Dip

Lulu's Mexican Dip
(Given to her by Robyn)

1- 8 ounce pkg cream cheese
8 ounces sour cream
1 can refried beans
1 jar mild taco sauce
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese

In 9" x 5" casserole dish, layer ingredients in order given. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. You can layer any vegetables you want on top. Serve with tortilla chips.

Lulu's Chicken Cordon Bleu

Lulu's Chicken Cordon Bleu

6 boneless chicken breasts
1- 8 ounce pkg Swiss cheese slices
1- 8 ounce package cooked ham slices
3 Tbls flour
1 tsp paprika
6 Tbls butter
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 chicken bouillon cube
1 cup heavy whipping cream

1 Tbls cornstarch

Pound chicken breasts flat between two pieces of waxed paper. Fold cheese and ham to fit on top of chicken, roll and fasten with toothpicks.
Combine flour and paprika and coat chicken.
In 12" skillet over medium heat, melt butter and cook chicken till browned on all sides. Add wine and bouillon, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove chicken from skillet to serving plate.
In small bowl, combine heavy cream and cornstarch until well mixed. Gradually stir into skillet, cook, stirring constantly until thickened. Serve over chicken. Serves 6.

Lulu's Sausage Meatball Soup


Lulu's Sausage Meatball Soup

6 cups chicken broth

7-8 potatoes, cubed
4 thinly sliced carrots
2 small onions, sliced into rings
3 Tbls butter
1 tsp garlic powder
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 pound sausage
1 cup milk

In soup pot, bring chicken broth, potatoes, carrots, onions, butter, garlic powder, salt, and pepper to a boil. Roll sausage into small (1") balls and drop into boiling pot; cook for 30 minutes. Turn heat down to a simmer and add milk. Simmer an additional 10 minutes. Serve with garlic bread, if so desired. Makes 4-6 servings.

Lulu's Ham Sandwich Casserole

Lulu's Ham Sandwich Casserole

2 cups cooked rice
4 large potatoes
2 cups diced ham
1 cup Cheddar cheese
1 cup Swiss cheese
6 slices bread, cubed
2 eggs
1 cup milk

Boil potatoes till soft, then cut into cubes. Combine potatoes, rice, ham, and cheeses. Place in a 9" x 13" pan. When potatoes are done preheat oven to 400 degrees while cubing potatoes.
Blend milk and eggs. Place bread cubes evenly over casserole. Pour egg mixture over top. Bake uncovered at 400 degrees until crust hardens, about 45-60 minutes. Serves 6-8.

Lulu's Stuffed Shells

Lulu is my cousin and takes this dish to most family gatherings. This has become her signature dish as she made it up from ingredients that she and her family love.

Lulu's Stuffed Shells

1 box jumbo shells (24-26 shells)
1 (24 ounce) large container cottage cheese
3 cups (12 ounces) shredded Mozzarella cheese
1 pound sausage
4 Tbls parsley
1 pkg (6 ounce) broccoli cuts, frozen
1 can (16 ounce) chicken broth
Garlic, salt, and pepper, to taste

Prepare shells according to package directions; cool.
Cook (fry) sausage and parsley till done.
Cook broccoli till tender.
Ina large bowl add broccoli, sausage, 2 cups cheese, and remaining ingredients except for shells and broth. Stuff shells and place in bottoms of two pie pans. Pour half of broth in each pan. Divide remaining cheese between pans and sprinkle over tops. Cover with foil and bake at 400 degrees for 45 minutes.

Irene's Superb Meatloaf

Irene's Superb Meatloaf

1 1/4 pounds ground chuck
1 egg, beaten
3/4 cup cheddar cheese, cut up into cubes (optional)
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 medium green pepper, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped thin
1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup Italian bread crumbs
1 Tbls. parsley
Salt and pepper, to taste
Dash paprika
3 slices bacon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine all ingredients, except bacon, in a bowl and combine well. Form into a loaf or oval and place into a pan. Lay strips of bacon on top. Bake at 350 degrees for about 1 hour. Bacon should crisp up.
Remove to paper towels to drain before placing on serving platter to serve. About 4 servings.

Irene's Amish Custard Pie

An old-fashioned pie that is good on cold winter nights. These are the kind of pies farm women made the working men who came to help in the fields. An easy pie that the entire family can enjoy.

Irene's Amish Custard Pie

1- 9" unbaked pie shell

1/3 cup sugar
2 tsps flour
1/2 tsp salt
3 eggs
3 cups milk
1/4 tsp nutmeg

Make a one crust pie dough and line a pie pan with the dough, crimping edges and trimming excess; set aside.
In a bowl, combine sugar, flour, salt, and eggs, mix till smooth. In a saucepan, heat milk to boiling point. Add 1 cup milk to the egg mixture mixing well, then add the remainder to the milk in pan and stir well so the eggs do not cook, Pour batter into unbaked pie shell. Sprinkle nutmeg over top. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes until pie sets up and is cooked through.

Irene's Seven Layer Bars

Who can resist these easy bar cookies that are so rich and decadent?

Irene's Seven Layer Bars

1/2 cup butter
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup butterscotch chips
1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1 can sweetened condensed milk (NOT evaporated milk)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Melt butter in a 9" x 13" pan in oven. Sprinkle graham cracker crumbs evenly over butter. Sprinkle evenly in layers the chips, coconut, and walnuts. Pour condensed milk evenly over all. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Let cool in pan, then cut into bars. Store in tightly covered container.

Tips: Use only real butter.
        Pecans can be substituted for the walnuts.
        The graham crackers are easily made into crumbs in
        your blender or food processor.

Irene's German Chocolate Cream Pie

Yum! A lovely frozen dessert that you can keep on hand and in the freezer for up to two months so you will have something special for when company comes by, or you just want something special. Pull out of freezer and let set for about half an hour before slicing and serving.
Irene's German Chocolate Cream Pie

4 ounce pkg. German Sweet Chocolate, grated
1/3 cup milk
2 Tbls. sugar
3 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 1/2 cups whipped topping, thawed (like Cool Whip)
1- 8" graham cracker pie crust (homemade or bought)

In small sauce pan over low heat, combine 2 Tbls. milk with the chocolate, stirring to melt.
Beat sugar into cream cheese; add remaining milk and chocolate mixture, beat till smooth. Fold in whipped topping, blending till smooth. Spoon batter into prepared crust and swirl around to fill evenly. Cover and freeze until firm, about 4 hours. Garnish with chocolate curls, if desired. Makes about 8 servings.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Irene's $250,000 Cookies


Irene's $250,000 Cookies
(Also known as Neiman Marcus)

5 cups powdered oatmeal
4 cups flour
2 tsps. baking powder
2 tsps. baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
8 ounces Hershey Bar candy, grated
3 cups chopped nuts (pecans or walnuts)
2 cups butter (1 pound), softened
2 cups sugar
2 cups brown sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla

Place oatmeal in a blender or food processor and grind to a powder~measure out 5 cups and place into a large bowl. Add flour, baking powder, soda, and salt to the oatmeal powder and mix well; set aside.
Grate the chocolate bar and combine with the chocolate chips and nuts in a separate bowl, set aside.
Cream together the butter and sugars till light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat well to incorporate. Add vanilla and mix. Mix in flour mixture until well blended. Stir in chocolate and nut mixture and blend well. Form into balls the size of walnuts and place 2" apart onto a lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake for 6 minutes at 375 degrees. Remove to a wire rack to cool. Makes about 112 cookies.
Cookies can be frozen. Recipe can be halved.

Irene's Amish Friendshp Starter and Bread Recipe


Renie sent me this recipe which is different from most as it allows natural yeasts to grow the starter and does not require the addition of yeast as some recipes do.
Many people get overwhelmed with Friendship Starter as they think they must continue to make bread all the time without a break and so they get frustrated and toss the starter down the drain or in the trash. This is unnecessary as this starter, like all starters, can be put in deep-freeze and saved for a few months before being pulled out and allowing to 'start' again by being fed and sitting at room temperature.
You can also use this starter in any way you would use a traditional starter and make a variety of foods from pancakes to rustic loaves of bread. Here I will post the traditional recipe that came with Reinney's list but get creative and find other recipes you can use this starter in to give you more variety.

Starter Batter

1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup milk

Day 1: Pour ingredients in a quart jar or in a plastic bag; cover loosely, do not refrigerate and keep on the counter in an out of the way place.
Days 2,3 & 4: Stir.
Day 5: Add 1 cup each: flour, sugar, milk; stir.
Day 6, 7 & 8: Add 1 cup each flour, sugar, milk; stir.
Day 9: Pour 1 cup out and divide into three 1/3 cup portions. Place each portion in a Ziploc container or small glass jar and give away to three friends. Use the remaining batter for your own use. Either refrigerate or feed the batter again with 1 cup each of flour, sugar, and milk and let sit a day before using or chilling for one week. Each week take out starter and set on counter and add 1 cup each flour, sugar, and milk and let ferment for 8-12 hours before use. Remove 1 cup for use or to give away and refrigerate what's left. Freeze this when you want to stop using it for awhile. When you take it out of the freezer, add one cup each flour, sugar, and milk and let set on counter for a day before use.

Amish Friendship Bread

1 cup starter batter
3 eggs
2/3 cup oil
2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 1/4 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsps. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)
1/2 cup raisins (optional)

Combine all ingredients, blending well. Pour into well-greased and sugared loaf pan (or 3 small mini loaf pans). Bake at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes or till tests done with a toothpick. Begin to check at 45 minutes. Turn out onto wire rack to cool. Can be frozen.