Monday, October 27, 2014

Sweetened Condensed Milk

Yes, I know. You can always go to the store and buy a can. But if for some reason you're stuck at home and have a Sweetened Condensed Milk Emergency, we're here for you.

1 cup hot water
2 cups sugar
4 cups instant nonfat milk (just the powder, not reconstituted)

Bring the water and sugar to a boil, stirring. Once the sugar is dissolved, put mixture into a blender or food processor. Blend in the milk.

Yields 1 quart.

Contributor: Laurie White Porter

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Crab Cheeseball

Look, we're all big cheeseballs over something. Why not over crab? Mmm, crab!

½ lb. crabmeat, coarsely chopped
2 teaspoons onions, finely minced
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
pinch cayenne
sprinkle of salt
8 oz. softened cream cheese
⅔ cup walnuts, finely chopped

Mix together everything except walnuts, stirring until all ingredients are well incorporated. Dump cheese mixture on waxed paper, using the paper to form the cheese into a ball, then roll cheeseball in nuts. Serve with crackers.

Makes 1 cheesy cheeseball for appetizer goodness.

Contributor: Karin Buck

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Pumpkin Bread II: Electric Boogaloo

On we proceed with the pumpkin spree!

1 cup packed brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
1 cup canned or cooked pumpkin
½ cup salad oil
2 eggs
½ cup chopped nuts
2 cup sifted flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon each salt, nutmeg and cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ginger
1 cup raisins
¼ cup water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9x5x3" loaf pan.

In a large bowl, combine sugars, pumpkin, oil, and eggs and beat until well blended. Sift or mix together flour, soda, salt and spices. Gradually add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture, stirring well. Stir in raisins, nuts and water. Spoon batter into prepared loaf pan and bake 60 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Turn out on a rack to cool. Makes 1 regular loaf.

Contributor: Kathleen Ashton

Friday, October 24, 2014

Pumpkin Pie Cake

It's that time of year when nearly every American's fancy turns to thoughts of pumpkin. (Trader Joe's goes a little insane with all the pumpkin-related goodies.) So here's a little something to get into the spirit of all things squashy.

1 package spice cake mix
½ cup melted butter
1 egg
1 large can pumpkin
½ cup brown sugar
2 eggs
⅔ cup evaporated milk
¼ teaspoon cloves
½ teaspoon ginger
2 teaspoons cinnamon, divided
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons melted butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9x13" pan. Reserve 1 cup of the spice cake mix, setting it aside.

To the rest of the cake mix, add 1/2 cup melted butter and egg and mix together well. Press into the bottom of the prepared pan.

In another bowl, mix together pumpkin, brown sugar, eggs, evaporated milk, cloves, ginger, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Pour this over the cake mixture in the pan.

Finally, combine the reserved 1 cup of spice cake mix, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, sugar and 2 tablespoons melted butter and stir until mixture becomes crumbly. Sprinkle this crumble over the top of the mixture in the pan. Bake 45 to 50 minutes.

Makes 10 servings.

Contributor: Karin Buck (who doesn't remember where she got this; it was years ago)

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Desi Chickpea Salad

Chickpeas, aka garbanzo beans, are tasty and very good for you -- and if you buy them dried and cook them at home, they are also WAY cheaper than the canned kind. (Do it the easy way and cook them in a slow cooker; then you can freeze them and use 'em whenever the urge takes you.) Anyway, having recently visited my friendly neighborhood Indian grocery store, I had a whole lotta cooked desi chickpeas (the dark brown kind) and a family to feed, so I came up with this:

1½ cups cooked desi chickpeas
1 jalapeño pepper, stemmed, seeded and minced
about 1 cup red onion, minced
2 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
juice of 1 lime or lemon
chat masala powder to taste
salt to taste

In a bowl, mix together chickpeas, jalapeño, onion and tomatoes. Add lime juice and chat masala and toss well. Taste for seasoning and add salt if needed. Chill until ready to serve.

Makes 4 generous servings or 6 side-dish servings.

NOTE TO SPICY 'FRAIDY CATS: Don't be scared of the jalapeño! If you take the seeds and pith out, all that's left is flavor without excessive heat. Just be careful not to wipe your eyes after mincing it up. Learn from my fail.

Contributor: Suzanne Houghton

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Oatmeal Scotchies

Got a package of butterscotch chips forgotten and languishing in the cupboard? Well, you could use them to make Seven Layer Cookies, or you could do this instead!

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
2 cups oatmeal
½ package (about 6 oz.) butterscotch chips
1 cup nuts, chopped, or 1 cup flaked coconut

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a cookie sheet, or line it with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars together with an electric mixer set to medium speed. Mix in eggs and vanilla extract. In a smaller bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. A little at a time, add the dry mixture to the wet mixture, blending well and scraping down sides of bowl if necessary. Mix in oatmeal, chips and nuts or coconut with a spoon.

Drop by tablespoons 2" apart onto prepared cookie sheet. Bake 11-13 minutes or until edges are very lightly browned. Allow to cool on cookie sheet 1 minute before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes about 5 dozen yummy cookies.

Stolen off the back of the butterscotch chips bag.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

French Mint Pie

So bad for you. So yummy. So who cares?

4 tablespoons sugar
30 vanilla wafers, crushed
6 tablespoons butter, melted
2 cubes butter, softened
1 heaping cup powdered sugar
2 eggs*
2 squares unsweetened chocolate, melted
½ teaspoon peppermint extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together crushed vanilla wafers, sugar and melted butter and press into a shallow 9" pie pan. Bake 7-10 minutes and allow to cool while making the filling. (Oh yeah, and turn off the oven. You're done with that now.)

In a bowl, cream together softened butter and powdered sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, then add chocolate and peppermint extract and mix well. Spread mixture in cooled pie shell and refrigerate 8 to 12 hours. Good on its own or covered with whipped cream and chopped almonds.

*If using raw eggs is a concern, use eggs pasteurized in the shell.

Makes 8 decadent servings.

Contributor: Linda Hart

Swedish Pancakes

Really Swedish. Grandpa's recipe.

6 or 7 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
¾ teaspoon salt
¼ cup sugar
1½ cups milk
¾ cup flour
2 tablespoons oil

In a bowl, mix together eggs, vanilla, salt and sugar with electric mixer, then beat in milk. Add flour and mix well, then add oil and mix again. You want a nice thin batter to make nice thin pancakes, right?

Fry in a nonstick pan over medium heat. Roll up and add melted butter, powdered sugar, maple syrup, strawberry or blueberry jam, or Swedish lingonberry preserves. Mm yeah.

Makes a few, but don't worry, they always get eaten.

Contributor: Suzanne Houghton via Karl Eriksson

Monday, October 13, 2014

Cocoa Crinkles

I think I got this one from Aunt Linda, but I'm not really sure. Doesn't matter. Yummy.

¾ cup salad oil
¾ cup baking cocoa
2 cups granulated sugar
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
powdered sugar for rolling

In a bowl, mix oil and cocoa together until blended. Stir in granulated sugar. Add eggs one at a time, stirring until well blended. Add vanilla. Stir flour, baking powder and salt into oil mixture. Chill dough several hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a cookie sheet by greasing it or lining it with parchment paper. Drop rounded teaspoonfuls of dough into powdered sugar. Roll in sugar and shape into balls, then roll again. Place balls about 2" apart on prepared cookie sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes, or until cookies have "crinkled." Cool slightly on sheet, then remove to wire rack to cool completely.

Makes 6 dozen cookies.

Contributor: Suzanne Houghton


Swedish gingerbread! It's GOOD STUFF Maynard!

1 cup butter, softened
1½ cups sugar
1 egg
1½ tablespoons orange zest, grated
2 tablespoons dark corn syrup
1 tablespoon water
3¼ cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground cloves

In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar; add egg. Then add orange zest, corn syrup and water and mix well.

In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda and spices. Add dry mixture to wet mixture a little at a time, stirring constantly. Knead resulting dough a little and chill in refrigerator.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Roll dough out very thin and cut into cookies. Bake 8 to 10 minutes.

Makes a whopping 8 dozen cookies. (Now you know why Pippi Longstocking rolled the dough out on her floor, because dang.)

Contributor: Suzanne Houghton (because I had the recipe)

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Onion Toasts

Another one from Aunt Marcia. I was tempted to call it "Elegant Onion Toasts," but... nah.

1 envelope onion soup mix
2 cups mayonnaise
bread, cut into triangles

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Mix together onion soup mix and mayonnaise until it's about the same consistency as onion dip. Spread this onion mixture on bread triangles. Put the triangles, spread-side up, on a cookie sheet and slide it into the hot oven. Bake about 15 minutes, watching them closely to make sure they don't burn, until onion toasts are golden brown and puffy.

Auntie Marcia says, "Eat them and try not to make more!"

Contributor: Marcia Hetzler

Little Toasties

Aunt Marcia remembers eating "little toasties" from childhood. They're basically homemade croutons, but honestly, who doesn't occasionally eat croutons as a snack? (Look, I don't wanna know if you don't.)

1 loaf bread, cut into 1" cubes
Olive oil or melted butter
Salt and fresh-ground pepper to taste
Seasonings (suggestions below)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Put bread cubes in a large bowl; drizzle them with olive oil or melted butter, then add salt, pepper and additional seasonings and mix well to coat. Spread cubes in a single layer on a cookie sheet and toast about 15 minutes. Eat like popcorn!

Suggested seasonings: parsley and onion powder, red pepper flakes, Parmesan cheese and basil, rosemary and garlic powder, tarragon and garlic powder (so I like garlic powder, sue me), seasoning salt (omit salt and pepper if you do this)

Contributor: Marcia Hetzler

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Elegant Fruit Salad

What is it with this family and elegance, anyway?

Oh well, I hear if you ain't got elegance you can never, ever carry it off.

1 package cook and serve lemon pudding/pie filling
½ cup sugar
2 cups skim milk
1 large can fruit cocktail, drained
2 cans mandarin oranges, drained
1 can chunk pineapple, drained
½ pint sweetened whipped cream
1 bag colored miniature marshmallows

In a saucepan, cook together pie filling, sugar and milk, stirring constantly until mixture boils. (Mixture will curdle, but will smooth out when it boils.) Allow to cool, then add fruit and stir until combined. Fold in whipped cream and marshmallows. Turn all into a 9x13" Pyrex or similar glass dish, cover and chill 4-5 hours.

Serves many.

Contributor: Norma Eriksson

Vernetta Slater's Fruit Cake

Ah, fruitcake. People tend either to love it or hate it. This one's heavy on the fruit and light on the cake.

1 lb. walnuts, coarsely chopped
1 lb. Brazil nuts, coarsely chopped
1 lb. pecans, coarsely chopped
3 cups coconut, shredded
1 box white raisins
1 lb. figs, chopped
1 lb. dates, pitted and chopped
1½ lbs. candied cherries
1½ lbs. candied pineapple
4 cups flour, divided
½ lb. butter
2 cups sugar
6 large eggs
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon cloves
½ teaspoon allspice
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon lemon zest
1 cup sherry or orange juice
1 2 quart bottle light Karo syrup

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line two standard loaf pans with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray.

Set aside ½ lb. each of cherries and pineapple for decorating. Dredge the rest of the fruit in 2 cups flour.

Cream together butter, eggs, sugar and 2 cups flour. Add all spices, baking powder, vanilla, lemon zest and sherry or orange juice. Mix in nuts and dredged fruit.

Divide measure equally between prepared loaf pans. Bake 3½ hours (checking after 2 hours for doneness). About 20 minutes before cakes are done, dip reserved decorating fruit in light Karo syrup and place atop loaves.

After cakes are removed from oven, pour the entire bottle of Karo syrup over them. (Hey, I don't make these recipes, I just write 'em down, OK?) Allow to age in covered containers.

Serves at least 18 people. More if they don't like fruitcake.

Contributor: Kathleen Ashton

Friday, October 10, 2014

Cream Cheese Pie

I bet you gained a pound or two just reading that. Oh well.

Graham cracker crust:
1 sleeve graham crackers, crushed
2 tablespoons sugar
¼ cup melted butter

12 oz. cream cheese, very soft
2 eggs
¾ cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons lemon or orange zest, grated

1½ cups sour cream
¼ cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine ingredients for graham cracker crust and press into 9" pie plate. Refrigerate crust.

In a bowl, combine filling ingredients and mix with an electric mixer at medium speed until smooth. Turn into chilled pie crust and bake 35 minutes.

Combine ingredients for topping and mix well. Spread topping on top of pie and bake another 10 minutes.

Allow pie to cool on wire rack, then chill well several hours or overnight. Top with fresh fruit or lingonberry preserves (oh my yes) and serve. Probably makes 8-10 servings, depending on how you cut it.

Contributor: Karin Buck

Mexicali Salad

Grandma used to make this one a lot. You may remember it from childhood. If you don't, you probably need to remember it from adulthood.

1 lb. ground beef
1 15 oz. can kidney beans, drained
¼ teaspoon salt
1 onion, chopped
4 tomatoes, chopped
1 large head lettuce, chopped
1 can black olives, drained
1 large avocado, sliced
1 package tortilla chips, crushed
4 oz. cheddar cheese, grated
8 oz. Thousand Island dressing
hot sauce to taste

In a saucepan, brown ground beef. Add kidney beans and salt and simmer for 10 minutes. Set aside.

In a large bowl (this is gonna feed a dozen people!), mix together onion, tomatoes, lettuce, olives and avocado. Toss salad ingredients with beef and bean mixture.

Before serving, add tortilla chips, cheese and Thousand Island dressing and toss to mix. Serve with hot sauce.

Makes 12 servings. That's right, 12. Call up all your friends.

Contributor: Norma Eriksson

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Mississippi Mud Bar Cookies

Even if you can't spell them, you should make them. They're goooood.

4 eggs
1 cup butter
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1½ cups flour, unsifted
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa
dash of salt
1 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped
1 jar (1¼ cups) marshmallow creme

⅓ cup butter
½ cup unsweetened cocoa
⅓ cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2½ cups powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9x13" baking pan.

In a large mixing bowl, beat together eggs, butter, sugar and vanilla extract with electric mixer on medium speed until mixture is light and fluffy, scraping down sides of bowl as you go. Add flour, cocoa and salt and beat just until well blended. Fold in pecans or walnuts. Spread mixture evenly in prepared pan and bake 40 to 45 minutes. Immediately after removing from oven, place dollops of the marshmallow creme on the hot cake and spread evenly until it is a smooth layer. Let cool on wire racks for at least 1 hour before frosting.

In a medium saucepan, melt butter, stir in cocoa and cook 1 minute. Remove from heat. Add remaining frosting ingredients, stirring until mixture is smooth. Spread frosting on top of marshmallow creme layer. When frosting has cooled, cut into 1" squares.

Makes 7 dozen cookies. Aunt Kathie adds, "Can decorate each square with a wreath of green icing and a red cinnamon candy in center. Delicious Bar Cookie!" And there you have it.

Contributor: Kathleen Ashton

Elegant Chicken Salad

From the always-elegant Auntie Kathie.

⅔ cup mayonnaise
¼ cup milk
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 teaspoons onion, grated
salt and pepper to taste

1 3-4 lb. frying chicken
1 medium onion, quartered
1 bay leaf
2 cups celery, with leaves
1 small carrot

1 cup green pepper, diced
1 lb. green seedless grapes
2 cups celery, chopped
1 small can pimientos, chopped (optional)
¾ cup walnuts, coarsely chopped

First, mix together dressing ingredients in a small bowl, cover and chill.

In a 6-quart saucepan or Dutch oven, add all chicken ingredients and enough water to cover. Bring rapidly to a boil, then cover and simmer 1 hour. Remove chicken and chill until it's easy to handle, then remove chicken from bones and cut into bite-sized pieces. (The boiled veggies and broth can be used to make soup later.)

In a bowl, mix together chicken and vegetables. Pour chilled dressing over all and toss lightly to coat. Serve in chilled lettuce cups, or as a filling for pita pocket sandwiches.

Serves a lot, because that's how we do things in this clan!

Contributor: Kathleen Ashton

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Jello Cheesecake Dessert

I'm pretty sure this was stolen from the kitchen of Grandma Ashton. She made all sorts of yummy jelled desserts.

1 small package lemon Jello
1 cup boiling water
3 tablespoons lemon juice
32 squares graham crackers
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 cube butter
chopped nuts (optional)
4 oz. cream cheese
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 can evaporated milk, chilled

Dissolve Jello in water. Add lemon juice and let stand.

Crush graham crackers to crumbs and mix with powdered sugar. Melt butter and add graham cracker mixture, stirring to mix well. You may also add chopped nuts to the mixture.

In a bowl, place cream cheese, granulated sugar and vanilla and cream together until smooth. Add to Jello mixture and stir.

In yet another bowl, beat evaporated milk until thick. Add Jello mixture and fold in well.

Line a square pan with half the graham cracker mixture, packing it down to form a crust. Pour Jello mixture over crust. Sprinkle the rest of the graham cracker mixture over the top. Chill 3-4 hours and serve in sliced squares.

Serves many. And it's the bomb.

Contributor: Kathleen Ashton

Gumdrop Cookies

"Do not use the black ones." OK then.

1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup Wesson oil (or any neutral oil, really)
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups rolled oats
1 package (about 1 lb. 14 oz.) gumdrops

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, beat together sugars and oil until fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla.

In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda and baking powder and add to the sugar mixture. Then add rolled oats and gumdrops (do not use the black ones). Drop by spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet and bake 12 to 15 minutes.

Not entirely sure what the yield is on this one. Someone make the recipe and let me know, won't you?

Contributor: Norma Eriksson, I think

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Aunt Naomi's Hermits

Aunt Naomi wrote that these fruit bars were [Uncle] "Brigham's favorite cookies." Tell me... how do you feel about... hermits?

1 cup butter
1½ cups sugar (part white and part light brown)
2 eggs, beaten
½ cup walnuts, chopped
1 cup raisins
½ teaspoon baking soda, in 2 tablespoons boiling water
2½ cups flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon allspice
2 tablespoons molasses
1 small package mixed fruit peel

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a jelly roll pan (aka a cookie sheet). Cream together butter and sugar, then add beaten eggs and molasses. Add boiling water/baking soda mixture. Blend well, then add dry ingredients, mixing in nuts, raisins and fruit peel last. Spread mixture out in prepared pan and bake for 20-30 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean and hermits are a delicate brown.

Remove to a cooling rack and cut while still warm. "I cut mine on the diagonal," wrote Aunt Naomi, and further provided this helpful diagram:

They also freeze well! Is there nothing these cookies cannot do?!

Makes as many hermits as you can cut from a jelly roll pan, I guess.

Contributor: Naomi Card

Curtis' Rotkohl

Yes, we've already put up Grandma Kest's red cabbage, which is goooood. But if you've been to a family smörgåsbord in Utah in the past few years, the red cabbage you've eaten there was probably made by the handsome and talented Curtis.

This is his story This is his recipe.

3 pounds red cabbage, sliced thinly
6 slices bacon, diced (I like more)
1 onion, sliced
3 apples, sliced thinly
1 cup chicken stock*
4 tablespoons red wine
4 tablespoons vinegar
4 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper, fresh ground

In a large pot (8 quarts or so), sauté the bacon and onions until the bacon is clear. Drain most of the fat, but keep some for flavor. Add the sliced cabbage and apples. Sauté all this until the cabbage begins to collapse a bit.

Add the remaining ingredients and cover. Cook over medium heat, stirring now and then, until all is nice and tender. This takes about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

*Curtis sez, "OK, if you really want to jazz this up, use corned beef broth instead of chicken broth. Trust me, this is like having a secret weapon in the kitchen wars."

Makes about 6 to 8 servings.

Contributor: Curtis Houghton

Monday, October 6, 2014

Company Chicken Rolls

Company coming? Time for chicken rolls!

2 cups chicken, cooked and cubed
4 oz. canned mushrooms, drained
2 frozen canisters Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
3 oz. cream cheese
3 oz. cream cheese with chives
¼ cup margarine or butter, softened and beat
⅛ teaspoon pepper
melted butter for dipping
1 cup breadcrumbs
¾ teaspoon sage
½ cup finely chopped nuts

4 cups chicken broth
1 tablespoon butter
4 tablespoons cornstarch

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together mushrooms, cheese, margarine and pepper. Fold in chicken and roll about ⅛ cup of mixture into each crescent roll. Dip in additional melted margarine/butter, then in breadcrumbs, sage and nuts. Place rolls on a greased cookie sheet and bake 20-30 minutes.

Near the end of baking time, in a skillet combine chicken broth and butter and heat to near boiling. Add cold water to cornstarch to make a slurry and stir it into the skillet to thicken the gravy. (Hint: the better your chicken broth is, the better your gravy will be.)

Serve rolls with gravy and jellied cranberry sauce. Makes about 16 rolls.

Contributor: Marjorie Clark

Grandma Kest's Red Cabbage

This recipe card is so covered with splotches and glops that it's hard to read. Yeah, it's been used a lot.

1 head red cabbage, cored and shredded
2 or 3 apples, cored and shredded
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon vinegar
pinch of ground cloves
about 1½ cups water

Combine in a large pot and bring to a boil, then turn down flame very low and simmer slowly, 1½ - 2 hours. When almost done, if desired, add a small amount of bacon grease for flavor.

No, I'm not sure how much nutmeg, cinnamon or allspice you should add. But you're all good cooks. Do what comes naturally.

There is also a mysterious injunction on this recipe card: "Do not tap spoon on side of pan while cooking." Or you will invoke the ghost of Grandma Kest!

Probably serves 6-8 as a side dish, knowing our family.

Contributor: Catharina Kest

Pistachio Cookies

One of Auntie Kathie's recipe cards yielded this.

2 cups unsifted flour
1½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
⅔ cup butter, softened, or margarine
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
red or green food coloring
¼ cup shelled pistachios, finely chopped
multicolor nonpareils

In a small bowl, sift flour with baking powder and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl, combine butter, sugar, egg and vanilla. With wooden spoon or electric mixer, beat until smooth. Add flour mixture, beating at low speed, just until combined. Turn 1 cup dough into small bowl, add 2 or 3 drops of food coloring and mix well. Add nuts and mix well. On waxed paper, shape dough with your hands into a roll 10" long; place in freezer for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, roll remaining dough between 2 sheets of wax paper into a 10x6" rectangle. Place this dough in the freezer 10 minutes. Once dough is chilled, remove top sheet of wax paper.

To form cookies, unwrap and place colored roll lengthwise in center of dough rectangle. With your hands, mold dough rectangle smoothly around colored roll, covering it completely. Roll in nonpareils, wrap in wax paper, and place in the freezer for 20-30 minutes, or until firm enough to slice.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Remove roll from freezer and unwrap. With a sharp knife, cut roll into slices ⅛" thick. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet and bake 8-10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Remove cookies to wire rack to cool completely.

Makes about 6 dozen cookies.

Contributor: Kathleen Ashton

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Sugar Cookies

This one is in Aunt Kathie's handwriting, but it says, "Recipe from the kitchen of Karin," so I'm giving them both credit. As is my wont.

½ cup powdered sugar
1 cup butter
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon almond flavoring
2½ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cream of tartar

In a bowl, cream sugar and butter until smooth. Mix in egg and flavorings. Add dry ingredients and stir well to create cookie dough. Refrigerate dough 2-3 hours.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Sprinkle rolling surface with a little powdered sugar. Roll out cookie dough to about ¼" thickness, cut in desired shapes and place on lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake 7-8 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove to a wire rack to cool.

Makes about 2 dozen cookies, depending on size of cookie cutters.

Contributors: Kathleen Ashton/Karin Buck

French Bread Pizza

If you grew up in a big family, this was probably a staple. It was yummy and cheaper than pizza delivery. This particular recipe yields a vegetarian (not vegan) pizza, but you can mess around with the toppings a lot. Any combo that would taste good on a regular pizza probably tastes good on French bread pizza. Just make sure to butter the bread, or it could get soggy.

1 loaf French bread, sliced in half lengthwise
enough butter to cover each cut surface of bread
a lot of Jack cheese, shredded
2-3 ripe tomatoes, sliced thin
about 1 lb. fresh mushrooms, washed and sliced thin
a coupla green chiles, seeded and sliced thin
1 onion, sliced thin
¼ - ½ cup hulled sunflower seeds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter the cut surfaces of the French bread and put the halves side by side, butter side up, on a large cookie sheet. To each French bread half, add a thin layer of Jack cheese, tomatoes, mushrooms, green chilies and onion, then cover all with another thick layer of cheese. Sprinkle sunflower seeds over all. Slide cookie sheet into hot oven and bake 10-15 minutes, or until cheese is melted and bread is toasty. Cut French bread pizza into slices and serve. Makes 8-10 servings depending on how thick you cut the slices.

Contributor: Karin Buck

Kari Sue's Broccoli Salad

OK, truth to tell, many of the aunties make this salad, but since my mommy phoned me to give me the recipe, she gets the credit!

2 heads broccoli, washed and broken into bite-sized florets
½ lb. bacon, cooked until crisp and crumbled
1 small red onion, minced
¾ cup raisins
½ cup hulled sunflower seeds

1 cup mayonnaise
½ cup sugar
¼ cup cider vinegar

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients for salad. (If you find you have a very strong red onion, mince it and then rinse it in a sieve under cold running water to help reduce some of the pungency.) In a smaller bowl, whisk together all ingredients for dressing; pour over salad and mix well.  Chill several hours in the refrigerator before serving. Makes 8-10 servings as a side salad.

Contributor: Karin Buck, neener neener.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Aunt Linda's Hamburger Pie

You saw it here first, folks!

Spiced meat:
2 lb. ground beef
½ teaspoon garlic salt
½ teaspoon onion salt
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
dash allspice

3 large potatoes, sliced
4 carrots, sliced in coins
1 onion, sliced and separated into rings
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons pepper
¼ teaspoon garlic salt
¼ teaspoon onion salt

Mushroom sauce:
2 cans mushroom soup
2 small cans mushrooms
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons Kitchen Bouquet

Other stuff:

½ pint sour cream

1 recipe pie crust (or just buy it from the store if you're lazy)

In a skillet, brown spiced meat mixture, turning occasionally. While mixture is browning, prepare vegetables. Put vegetable mixture into a large pot, add 4 cups water and bring to a boil. Cook until vegetables are tender, then drain water.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. To vegetables, add mushroom sauce and spiced meat mixture. Mix all together and cook for a few minutes, adding sour cream near end of cooking time. Turn mixture into large bowl or casserole dish and cover with pie crust. Bake until crust is golden. Makes 8-12 servings.

Contributor: Linda Hart

Spanish Rice

It's a skillet-to-oven rice casserole. It's pretty tasty. And it's Grandma Eriksson's. Good for serving carbs to crowds.

2 large onions, minced
1 large bell pepper, chopped
a few stalks celery, chopped
bacon grease for cooking
1 lb. ground beef
1 large can tomatoes
1 can hot sauce
½ cup uncooked rice, washed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet, sauté onions, pepper and celery in bacon grease. Add ground beef and brown well, draining fat. Add tomatoes and hot sauce, stirring to mix, and heat until mixture boils. Add rice and stir again. Turn contents into 9x13" casserole dish and bake for about 1 hour. Probably makes 8 servings.

Contributor: Norma Eriksson

Friday, October 3, 2014

Taco Pie

Yep, it's another Grandma Eriksson casserole special! And this one's odd in that you're baking lettuce into a casserole.

1 lb. ground beef
1 15 oz. can tomato sauce
1 envelope dry onion soup mix
1 10¾ oz. can golden mushroom soup
corn tortillas, as needed
iceberg lettuce, shredded, as needed
cheese, grated, as needed

In a skillet, brown ground beef, draining fat. Add tomato sauce, onion soup mix and golden mushroom soup; allow to heat through, stirring occasionally.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread corn tortillas (enough to cover the bottom) in a 9x13" casserole dish. Top with a layer of shredded lettuce, then a layer of grated cheese, then half the sauce from the skillet. Repeat all layers, then top with grated cheese. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until bubbly and browned. Makes 8 servings.

Contributor: Norma Eriksson

Cathedral Windows

These are often served along with Christmas cookies, but they're really a simple (but very pretty) candy. Be sure to get the colored marshmallows; you need the variegated colors to make this treat look awesome.

6 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
¼ cup butter
3 cups multicolored mini-marshmallows
¾ cup nuts, chopped

Melt together butter and chocolate chips; allow to cool. (You don't want this mixture to be so hot it melts the marshmallows.) Stir in marshmallows and ¼ cup of the nuts. Form mixture into two 6" long rolls; roll each roll in the remaining nuts. Cover each roll in plastic wrap and chill for several hours. When ready to serve, cut into ½" slices. Store uneaten Cathedral Windows in the refrigerator.

Makes about 24 candies.

Contributor: Karin Buck

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Cranberry-Orange Chiffon Pie

You already know this is an Aunt Kathie special, dontcha? Plus it's all no-bake goodness up in yo face!

Graham cracker crust:
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
⅛ cup butter, softened
¼ cup walnuts, chopped
1 tablespoon sugar

1 envelope unflavored Knox gelatin
½ cup orange juice
1 1 lb. can whole cranberry sauce
1 tablespoon orange zest, grated
2 egg whites
¼ cup sugar

whipped cream
additional orange zest

For crust, combine crumbs, butter, walnuts and sugar and press into the bottom and up the sides of a 9" pie pan.

In a medium saucepan, mix gelatin and orange juice; let stand 1 minute. Add cranberry sauce and stir over low heat until gelatin is completely dissolved and cranberries are broken up and heated, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and add orange zest. Chill, stirring occasionally until mixture is the consistency of unbeaten egg whites.

In a medium bowl, beat egg whites until soft peaks form; gradually add sugar and beat until stiff. Fold in chilled gelatin mixture and turn into a prepared crust. Chill until firm. Garnish top with whipped cream and grated orange zest.

Makes 1 pie suitable for Thanksgiving dessert, church suppers, community potlucks, or whenever you just want to pig out on cranberry goodness.

Contributor: Kathleen Ashton

Green Tomato Pie

It's getting to the time of year when we gather in all the beautiful tomatoes that never turned red.

Oh yeah, you can cook with them. Just because they're still green doesn't mean they're inedible. Think of fried green tomatoes, green tomato pickles... and, of course, this. Your basic mock apple pie.

1 recipe pie crust for a 9" double-crust pie (or go buy crust from the store if you're lazy)
1⅓ cups sugar
7 tablespoons flour
1½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
4 cups green tomato slices, cut in quarters
4 tablespoons lemon juice
1½ teaspoons grated lemon zest
4 teaspoons butter, melted

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a 9" pie pan with pie crust. In a bowl, mix together sugar, flour, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. In another bowl, gently mix together tomatoes, lemon juice and zest. Mix the contents of both bowls together and turn into pie pan. Dot filling with melted butter and cover with top crust, crimping edges of crust to seal. Cut slits in top crust to vent. Bake 35-45 minutes or until crust is nicely browned. Serve warm. Makes one 9" pie.

Contributor: Karin Buck

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Bubble Ring

Yes, today we're going to show you how to make a bubble ring. AKA sticky buns. Stop snickering.

Basic dough:
2 packages active dry yeast
½ cup warm water
¼ cup sugar
2 teaspoons salt
½ cup shortening
2 cups milk, scalded
7 - 8 cups flour, sifted
2 eggs, beaten

Bubble ring:
half of the basic dough recipe
½ cup butter, melted
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¾ cup chopped nuts
½ cup raisins
¼ cup candied cherries

For dough: soften yeast in warm water. Add sugar, salt and shortening to saucepan of scalded milk. Stir until shortening melts, then cook on the stove until mixture is lukewarm. Take off the stove and beat in 3 cups flour. Stir in eggs and yeast, beating well. Add remaining flour to form a soft dough. Let rest 10 minutes, then knead on lightly floured surface until dough is smooth and satiny. Place dough in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover with a damp dishtowel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk. Punch dough down and divide into halves. Let dough rest.

NOTE: Since the bubble ring recipe only uses half the dough, the other half may be formed and baked as rolls. Yes, this is a BONUS recipe!

For bubble ring: roll dough into balls the size of walnuts, hiding raisins and cherries inside each ball. Roll each ball in melted butter, then in sugar and cinnamon, then in chopped nuts. Place balls in a ring mold so they barely touch each other, cover and allow to rise until doubled.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake bubble ring 35-40 minutes. Invert on a rack to cool and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Makes one delicious bubble ring. Oh, and bonus rolls! Or double up on the bubble ring ingredients and make TWO delicious bubble rings!

Contributor: Kathleen Ashton

Cake Mix Cookies

This is a super-simple cookie recipe for when you don't have a lot of time to put cookie dough together, but you do have a box of cake mix on the shelf.

1 box commercial cake mix, any flavor
½ cup salad oil
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup "additions" (chopped nuts, chocolate chips, flaked coconut, whatevs) (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, blend together cake mix, oil and eggs. If desired, add "additions" and stir to mix. Drop by spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet and bake 10-12 minutes.

Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

Suggested combinations:
devil's food cake mix & white or semisweet chocolate chips
spice cake mix & tart apple, chopped
chocolate cake mix & crushed peppermint candies
lemon cake mix & crushed lemon drop candies
carrot cake mix & chopped macadamias

Basically, go nuts!

Contributor: Karin Buck