March 2006

Hello Everyone,

St. Patrick's Day is right around the corner and I've featured some new Irish recipes that I hope you will enjoy! For more St. Patrick's Day Recipes please visit Razzle Dazzle Recipes.

     Mary Ellen        

RECIPES FOR MARCH - ST. PATRICK'S DAY

THE IRISH ROVER'S SALMON PATE 

1 1/2 pounds cream cheese
1 pound chopped, smoked salmon (rough-cut, not fine or silky)
1/2 large yellow onion, diced
1 squeeze of lemon

Combine all ingredients in a food-processor bowl. Whip until well-blended. Serve on heavy bread, such as soda bread.

Makes more than 2 pounds.

SPICY CORNED BEEF

2 corned beef briskets, about 5 pounds each
1 medium onion, halved
1 medium carrot, cut into chunks
1 celery rib, with leaves
1 tablespoon mixed pickling spices
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
1/2 cup sweet pickle juice

Place corned beef in a large Dutch oven and cover with water. Add onion, carrot, celery and pickling spices. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 2 1/2 to 3 hours or until meat is tender. Transfer corned beef to a 13-by-9-by-1-inch baking dish.

Discard broth and vegetables. Score the surface of meat with shallow diagonal cuts. Combine brown sugar and mustard; spread over meat. Pour pickle juice into dish.

Bake, uncovered, at 325 degrees for 1 hour, basting occasionally.

Yields 18 to 20 servings.

SALMON CAKES

1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 pound salmon fillet
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
1 teaspoon fresh parsley, chopped
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 egg, beaten
Flour, for dredging
1 egg mixed with 1 tablespoon water for egg wash
1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs, for dredging
Vegetable oil, for frying
Lemon slices, parsley and sour cream or creme fraiche for garnish

Put the potatoes in a large saucepan, cover with salted, cold water and bring up to a boil. Cook until tender, 12-15 minutes. Meanwhile, put the salmon in a large, shallow skillet, season lightly with salt and pepper, and cover halfway with water or white wine.

Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer to poach. Cover with a lid. Turn one time when halfway through cooking, and cook until opaque in the center. Remove from the pan and set aside until cool enough to handle. Remove skin (if it is on) and any bones. Flake the fish into medium-size chunks.

When the potatoes are cooked, drain and return to the pan. Mash with milk while still hot to a fluffy, even consistency.

Add tarragon and parsley. Fold in the salmon. Season to taste.

Once cooled, add the egg and mix again. Chill for at least 10 minutes before forming the patties.

Shape the mixture into 8 to 10 evenly sized cakes. Lightly dredge in flour, pass through the egg wash and then dredge in the breadcrumbs.

Heat the oil over medium high heat in a large, nonstick skillet. Add the patties, being careful not to crowd them, and cook in batches.

Turn when cooked to a golden brown.

Count on about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels and serve immediately, garnish with lemon slices, parsley and a dollop of sour cream or creme fraiche.

Makes 4 to 5 servings of two cakes each.

IRISH LAMB STEW

2 pounds boned shoulder of lamb, cut into 2-inch cubes
1/4 cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, or to taste
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium onions, sliced
2 leeks, sliced thin
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 bottle of red wine or enough chicken stock to cover
14 1/2-ounce can whole plum tomatoes, crushed
4 carrots, quartered
10 baby Yukon Gold potatoes
2 stalks celery, quartered
2 parsnips, quartered
10-ounce package frozen green peas
Few sprigs parsley
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

Lightly flour the lamb, season to taste with salt and pepper; brown the meat on all sides in olive oil in a large, lidded saucepan. Remove meat.

Saute the onions, leeks and garlic in the same oil until translucent. Return lamb to the saucepan, cover with the red wine and 1/2 the canned tomatoes, crushed. Bring to full boil, then turn heat down to low and simmer fully covered for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

Add carrots, potatoes, celery, parsnips and rest of tomatoes, crushed (and chicken stock if needed) to the lamb; add salt to season the vegetables to taste; bring to boil, then lower heat and simmer over low heat, uncovered, for 1 hour to 1 1/2 hours. Add peas, parsley and thyme, and cook for final 10 minutes.

Makes 4 servings.

Note: If you need additional liquid to cover, use more chicken stock.

MURPHY'S IRISH STEW

2 pounds beef, cubed
2 1/2 tablespoons cooking oil, divided
2 large brown onions, chopped
2 cloves crushed garlic
1/4 cup flour
1 cup beef stock
1 cup Murphy's stout or any dark beer
2 large carrots, sliced
3 large potatoes, cut into pieces
2 bay leaves
Black pepper

Cook onions in 1 tablespoon oil until soft. In another pan, brown beef in 1 1/2 tablespoons oil. Stir in flour to coat meat. Blend in stock and stout. Stir and bring to a simmer.

Add onions, garlic, carrots, potatoes, bay leaves and pepper. Cook, uncovered, for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

Serves 4 to 6.

HAM AND CABBAGE

Adapted from "Irish Country Cooking" by Helen Walsh, it calls for a 3-pound uncooked ham shank end.

Uncooked ham, especially in the 3-pound size, is uncommon in supermarket meat departments, but can be found or requested at specialty meat shops. If you get a ham at the supermarket, it's usually larger (5 to 7 pounds) and often sold "ready-to-eat" or "pre-cooked." These hams are suitable for the following recipe; you can follow the directions for boiling and baking, though you may need to adjust the cooking time -- "ready-to-eat" hams taste best when warmed to an internal temperature of 140 degrees.

Remember while you are cooking that the water the ham is boiled in will be used to boil the cabbage and the cabbage water will be used to make the parsley sauce.

Ham:
3 pounds uncooked ham (preferably shank), or ham of your choice
2 tablespoons kosher or sea salt
3/4 cup brown sugar, or as needed
1/4 cup whole cloves (optional)

Cabbage:
2 pounds green cabbage (or one good-sized head)
1/2 medium onion
1 teaspoon salt

Parsley sauce:
1 1/4 cups broth from the cabbage
1/4 cup butter or margarine
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

To cook the ham: Pat the ham dry with paper towels and rub thoroughly with salt. Place in large pot, such as a Dutch oven; pour in enough water to cover the ham as much as possible (without coming too close to the top) and bring to a boil. A 3-pound ham will need about 6 cups of water.

Meanwhile, in another pot, bring enough water to cover the ham again to a boil.

When the ham comes to a boil in the first pot, discard the salted water and put in the clean boiling water from the second pan. You need the ham to simmer, so don't fill the pan so full that the water leaps out onto the burner. Bring everything back to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, for about an hour if using a 3-pound ham. If the ham isn't entirely covered by the water, turn it a few times during cooking so it heats through. Remove ham to a cutting board and reserve ham-cooking water.

Heat oven to 425 degrees.

If the ham needs skinning -- supermarket hams usually don't -- skin the ham by making a long, shallow slice and pulling the skin off with your hands.

Slice a diamond-shaped grid in the fat, coat the ham with brown sugar and stud with cloves (if using).

Place ham in a roasting pan and brown it in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until the internal temperature is 140 degrees for a "ready-to-eat" ham and 160 degrees if you started with an uncooked ham. If the ham browns before it's done, or before you're done with the cabbage and the sauce, turn the heat down.

To cook the cabbage: While the ham simmers, prepare the cabbage. Cut it in half and cut out a V in both ends to remove the hard, solid core. Cut the halves in half again to make 4 wedges of cabbage.

After removing the ham, place cabbage, onion and salt in the pot with the ham stock. Bring to a boil; cover tightly, lower heat and simmer, still covered, for about 20 minutes, or until tender. Drain, saving the cooking water, and discard the onion.

To make the parsley sauce: Measure out 11/4 cups of the cooking water from the cabbage for the parsley sauce and set aside.

In a saucepan, melt butter, stir in flour and cook for a minute or two -- until smooth but not brown. Gradually add the stock and then the milk and salt. Bring mixture to a boil and stir for a few minutes, but less than 5. The mixture will thicken. Remove from heat and stir in the parsley.

Serve the ham and cabbage on a large platter, with the sauce passed separately.

A 3-pound ham serves 6 to 8. Estimate 1/3 pound per serving for any other size of ham.

ONION CARROT COLCANNON

1 pound curly kale or cabbage, washed with stems and cores removed
2 pounds Russet or Yukon Gold potatoes
1 carrot, peeled and sliced
1 leek, white part only, chopped
1/2 bunch chives, diced fine
1 bunch scallions, diced fine
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 stick butter
Salt and black pepper to taste
1 pinch, mace, nutmeg or thyme
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
1/2 stick butter

Shred kale or cabbage into fine strips. Place in pot, cover with salted water and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Peel and quarter potatoes. Place in a saucepan and cover with cold salted water. Add carrots and bring to a boil. Cook 10 minutes or until done. Strain off water and hand mash.

Meanwhile, combine chopped leeks with chives, scallions, garlic, milk and 2 ounces butter and heat on a low burner. Drain cabbage and add to the milk mixture. Cook a few minutes and then slowly add the warmed milk mixture to the mashed potatoes and carrots while mixing to a creamy consistency.

Season with salt, pepper and mace. Stir in the chopped parsley and mound the mixture in a serving dish or bowl. Make a hollow in the center and fill with the remaining butter.

Serves 4 to 6.

GREEN LASAGNA

Olive oil for the pan
About 16 green uncooked lasagna noodles, either fresh or dried
2 pounds fresh spinach, washed; or 2 10-ounce packages fresh baby spinach leaves; or 2 10-ounce packages frozen, chopped spinach, defrosted
2 pounds ricotta cheese
1 cup pesto (recipe follows) or commercially prepared
4 large cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1/3 cup pine nuts or finely chopped walnuts, lightly toasted
1 pound mozzarella cheese, grated
Lightly oil a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with olive oil.

If using fresh noodles, skip this paragraph: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add noodles; cook for about 4 minutes. (They will be undercooked.) Drain and lay flat on a table, counter or tray.

Meanwhile, if using fresh spinach, chop it fine. If using frozen chopped spinach, make sure it is thoroughly defrosted and squeeze out all excess water. Place ricotta in a large bowl. Stir in spinach, pesto, garlic, salt, pepper to taste, 1/2 cup Parmesan and nuts. Mix well.

Place a layer of noodles in bottom of prepared pan. Spoon about 1/3 of filling in dabs over the noodles. (You can spread it a little but not too much.) Sprinkle with 1/3 of grated mozzarella. Follow with another layer of noodles, another 1/3 of filling and another 1/3 of mozzarella. Repeat one more time, and then finish up with a final layer of noodles, topped with remaining Parmesan.

Bake in preheated 350-degree oven 50 minutes. If top becomes as brown as you like before this time is up, cover loosely with foil and continue baking. Serve hot.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Pesto:
3 packed cups fresh basil leaves
3 to 4 cloves garlic
1/3 cup lightly toasted pine nuts or walnuts, optional
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper
Additional extra-virgin olive oil for storage, optional

Place basil leaves and garlic to taste in a food processor or blender and mix well. Add nuts, if desired, and continue to blend until nuts are finely ground. Keep machine running as you drizzle in olive oil.

When you have a smooth paste, transfer to a bowl and stir in Parmesan. Season to taste with salt and pepper. If you are not going to use pesto right away, place in a container with a tight-fitting lid. Smooth out top surface of pesto and pour on enough olive oil to cover it completely. This creates an air-proof seal that helps preserve it well. Cover tightly and store in refrigerator for up to several days. Makes 1 cup.

IRISH FARMHOUSE BAKE 

This recipe, from Clougheast Castle in County Waterford, is old-fashioned and delicious. It calls for 8 slices of smoked back bacon. The bacon in Ireland is usually much meatier than the kind we buy here, so you may want to substitute about 1 pound or so of chopped ham or Canadian bacon.

1/4 cup butter
8 slices smoked back bacon, cut into pieces (substitute ham)
1 large onion, finely chopped
4 ounces sliced mushrooms
6 boiled potatoes, peeled
1/2 cup heavy cream
4 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, grated (about 1 cup)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
Salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter in a pan. Add bacon or ham. Cook over medium-high heat until the meat begins to brown, then remove from pan. Add onions and mushrooms to the pan. Cook until they start to turn brown.

Cut boiled potatoes into wedges. Arrange with fried bacon, mushrooms and onions in a baking dish. Pour cream over the top. Cover with grated cheese and parsley. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Bake on the top rack of a 425-degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes, until cheese is melted and the casserole is heated through.

Serves 6.

Nutrition data: 461 calories, 27 grams fat, 24 grams protein, 32 grams carbohydrate, 3 grams fiber, 1,276 milligrams sodium.

IRISH SODA BREAD 

4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon, each, baking powder and baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons shortening
1/2 cup raisins
1 tablespoon caraway seeds
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons butter, melted
Cinnamon-sugar, for topping

In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Cut in shortening until mixture is crumbly. Stir in raisins and caraway seeds. Combine buttermilk and egg and stir in the crumb mixture. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently 5 to 6 times.

Divide dough in half and shape into two balls. Place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Pat each ball into a 6-inch round loaf. Using a sharp knife, cut a 4-inch cross about 1/4 inch deep on top of each loaf. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar.

Bake at 375 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes or until golden.

Yields 2 loaves.

IRISH WHISKEY CAKE 

1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
1 box yellow cake mix
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
1/2 cups Irish whiskey
1 small package instant vanilla pudding

Grease and flour a bundt or tube pan. Sprinkle nuts over bottom of pan. Combine remaining ingredients and mix well. Pour batter into pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour.

Cool; invert onto plate. Prick holes in cake with toothpick. Drizzle glaze over top and sides, allowing it to be absorbed into cake. Continue until all glaze is used.

Glaze:
1 stick butter
1/4 cup water
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 to 1 cup Irish whiskey (to your taste)

Melt butter in saucepan. Add water and sugar. Boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; stir in whiskey. Cool slightly and pour over cake as directed above. Let sit at least one hour before serving.

IRISH BREAD PUDDING

1 pound white bread, cubed
6 ounces melted butter
8 eggs
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 quart milk
1 cup heavy cream
2 1/4 teaspoons cinnamon
Pinch nutmeg
1/2 recipe Jameson whisky sauce (see recipe)

Heat oven to 350. Line a large, deep roasting pan with dish towels. Bring a kettle of water to a boil. Place rack in the center of oven. Drizzle the melted butter over bread cubes and place them in a buttered 9-by-13-inch baking pan.

Scald the milk and cream. Mix together the eggs, sugar, salt and vanilla. Stir in the hot milk and cream. Pour this custard over the bread cubes. Sprinkle lightly with cinnamon and nutmeg (go easy on the nutmeg).

Place baking pan in roasting pan and set on oven rack. Pour boiling water into roasting pan until it comes at least halfway up the sides of the baking pan. Bake in a water bath until set, about 40 minutes.

Serve warm with whisky sauce.

Makes 20 servings

Whisky Sauce


1 pound butter
2 cups sugar
4 egg yolks
1/3 cup Jameson Irish Whiskey

Melt the butter in a sauce pan over medium heat. When bubbling, whisk in sugar but do not bring to boil.

In a separate bowl beat the egg yolks. When the sugar is melted, slowly whisk the yolks into the sugar mixture. Remove from heat. Slowly whisk in the whisky and drizzle over bread pudding.

Makes 5 cups

GOLD COINS

24 Ritz Crackers
peanut butter
melted butterscotch chips

Spread half of the crackers with peanut butter. Top with a plain cracker, and dip into melted butterscotch chips. Place on wax paper to harden.

IRISH COFFEE

Heated cup or goblet
1 shot Irish whiskey
2 teaspoons brown sugar
Good coffee
Whipped cream (not from a tub or canister)

Fill cup with strong black coffee to within one inch of top. Stir gently.

Top off with slightly whipped cream, aged at room temperature.

APPETIZERS

SPICY DIPPING SAUCE

Dipping sauce is good for crusty Italian bread such as Cibiatta or Foccacia or crusty French bread.

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
1 teaspoon herbes de Provence
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Cracked pepper, to taste

Whisk together ingredients and serve with crusty bread.

REUBEN DIP

3/4 pound corned beef
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups shredded Swiss cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 1/2 cups drained sauerkraut
1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
1/2 cup dark beer

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In large bowl, combine all ingredients. Pour into large, deep baking dish. Bake uncovered in preheated oven 35 to 45 minutes, until bubbling.

Makes 8 to 10 servings.

BLT BITES

16 cherry tomatoes
1 pound bacon; cooked - crumbled
1/2 cup mayonnaise or Miracle Whip
1/3 cup chopped green onions
3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons snipped parsley

Cut a thin slice off of each tomato top. Scoop out and discard pulp. Invert the tomatoes on a paper towel to drain. In a small bowl, combine all remaining ingredients; mix well. Spoon into tomatoes. Refrigerate for several hours.

MAIN DISHES

VEAL SALTIMBOCCA

2 pounds fettuccine noodles
2 tablespoons olive oil plus about 1/2 cup olive oil, divided use
3 pounds boneless veal cutlets
4 teaspoons sage, finely chopped
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
16 prosciutto slices, paper-thin
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup dry white wine
1 1/2 cups butter, chilled and cubed
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/4 cup parsley, coarsely chopped
1 lemon, cut into eighths

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta in the boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes, or until tender to the bite. Toss with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and keep warm.

Meanwhile, pound cutlets to an even thickness of about 1/4-inch between two pieces of plastic wrap (to make about 16 slices). Season the veal with sage, salt and pepper. Place 1 slice of prosciutto atop each cutlet.

Lightly coat veal in flour; shake off excess. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in heavy, large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 4 pieces of veal and cook until golden, about 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Add fresh oil as needed until all the veal is cooked. Transfer veal to a platter and keep warm.

Pour off fat from skillet and discard; add the wine to the skillet, and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the skillet. Boil until liquid is reduced to 1/4 cup, about 3 to 4 minutes. Reduce heat to low.

Whisk in the chilled butter, 2 tablespoons at a time. Season sauce with salt, pepper and chopped parsley.

Serve the veal immediately, accompanied by the fettuccine. Pour 1/4 cup sauce over the top of each portion and garnish with a lemon wedge.

Makes 8 servings.

Nutrition information per serving without pasta: 830 calories, 39 g protein, 25 g carbohydrates, 61 g fat, 690 mg sodium, 240 mg cholesterol, 1 g fiber.

From The Culinary Institute of America's Gourmet Meals in Minutes

GREEK LEMON CHICKEN WITH POTATOES

Chicken:
1 large chicken
1 lemon, juice of
3/4 tablespoon dried oregano
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced

Potatoes:
5-6 large potatoes, peeled and cut into big wedges 
1 lemon, juice of
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup water
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 tablespoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2-3 cloves minced garlic 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place chicken in baking dish. Salt, pepper, and garlic to taste; use enough to put some in the bottom of dish. Cover chicken with oregano. Pour olive oil over entire chicken, covering bottom of dish. Add 1 1/2 cups of water to bottom of dish.

Bake at 350 degrees until golden and done. Baste frequently using juices. Add additional water and lemon juice to bottom of dish keeping about 1 inch of juice. Remove chicken leaving juice.

Cut and peel potatoes into quarters. Deep fry until golden brown. Place potatoes in baking dish with lemon and oil juice. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and oregano. Add additional water/lemon juice as needed (the more lemon the better). Juice should cover at least half of potatoes. Baste frequently.
Bake at least 1/2 hour (the longer they bake the better they taste).

4-6 servings

ITALIAN POT ROAST

4 tablespoons olive oil
1 boneless beef chuck or round roast, about 4 pounds
Salt, pepper
2 cups chopped onion
2 large carrots, diced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 1/2 cups dry red wine (we used Gallo Hearty Burgundy)
1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes

Heat half the oil in a deep kettle large enough to hold the roast. Sprinkle salt and pepper all over meat. Brown meat on all sides over medium-high heat. Remove from pan. Add remaining oil. Saute onion and carrots until softened. Add garlic and saute a few more minutes.

Return meat to pan. Sprinkle with thyme and rosemary. Add wine and simmer for 5 minutes. Add crushed tomatoes. Cover and cook at a simmer for about 3 hours, until meat is fork-tender. Slice and serve with the sauce.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

POT ROAST PAPRIKAS

4 slices thickly cut bacon, diced
1 boneless chuck roast, about 2 1/2 lbs
Salt, pepper
1 tablespoon imported sweet Hungarian paprika
2 cups chopped onions
1/4 cup diced carrots
1 cup (about 15 ounces) chicken broth
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 cup water
1/2 cup sour cream

Fry diced bacon in a heavy kettle until crisp. Remove from pan with slotted spoon and set aside. Season meat with salt and pepper, then rub all over with paprika. Brown on both sides in the bacon drippings over medium-high heat. Remove meat from pot and set aside.

Pour off all but 2 tablespoons fat. Saute onions and carrots until onions are soft and golden. Return roast to pan. Add broth, vinegar and enough water to come halfway up sides of roast. Cover and simmer over low heat for about 2 1/2 hours, until meat is very tender.

Transfer roast to a platter. Stir bacon bits and the sour cream into the cooking liquid and warm through but do not boil. Cut roast into thick slices and moisten with some of the sauce. Pass remaining sauce at the table.

Makes 4 servings.

SALMON AND MACARONI SQUARES

1 cup macaroni, raw
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon chopped pimiento
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 can (16 ounces) salmon, drained and flaked

Cook macaroni in boiling salted water, following package directions; drain well.

Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a saucepan over low heat. Stir in flour, stirring until smooth and bubbly. Gradually stir in milk. Continue to cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until thickened. Add a small amount of the hot mixture to the beaten eggs, whisking to incorporate quickly. Return egg mixture back to the saucepan mixture; whisk in. Add cheese, pimiento, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, and salmon. Turn mixture into a buttered 9-inch square pan.

Bake at 375° for 25 to 30 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes; cut into squares to serve.

SPAGHETTI PIE

1 pound ground beef
1/4 cup chopped celery
1 jar (about 15 ounces) prepared spaghetti sauce
2 jars (4 ounces each) sliced mushrooms, drained
1/2 cup sliced black olives (optional)
6 ounce uncooked spaghetti, cooked until tender, drained and rinsed
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (divided)
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 9-inch square pan or 10-inch deep dish pie pan.

In large skillet, brown beef with celery; drain. Stir in prepared spaghetti sauce and mushrooms. Add olives if desired. Simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Combine cooked spaghetti, eggs, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese and garlic salt; toss lightly. Transfer to prepared pan and press evenly onto bottom and up sides of pan to form crust. Pour meat mixture in center of pan, leaving spaghetti showing around edges. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until crust is set and edges are lightly browned. Remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Make 6 servings.

APRICOT GLAZED CHICKEN

2 (3 pound) chickens, cut into serving pieces
salt
minced garlic, or garlic powder
1-12 ounce packet dried peaches
3/4 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 cup dry white wine
3/4 cup apricot jam
parsley sprigs

Season chicken with salt and garlic to taste. Place peaches and raisins in bottom of buttered 16 x 12 inch baking pan. Top with chicken pieces. Brush with melted butter. Drizzle 3/4 cup wine over.

Cover loosely with foil and bake at 325F for 45 minutes. Warm apricot jam in small saucepan. Press jam through sieve into bowl. Stir in remaining white wine. Uncover chicken and baste with apricot wine mixture. Continue baking at 325F, uncovered, 30 minutes, basting frequently, until chicken is tender and deeply glazed. Garnish with parsley.

MACADAMIA NUT CHICKEN BREASTS

1/2 C soy sauce
1 1/2 T Brown Sugar
1 T olive oil
1 t chopped garlic
1 t grated ginger
1 T mirin - Japanese wine
6 boneless chicken breasts
2 T olive oil for cooking
1 T butter
1/2 C flour
3 eggs
3/4 C Hawaiian or Asian bread crumbs
1 C crushed macadamia nuts

Combine the soy sauce, brown sugar, 1 T olive oil, garlic, ginger and mirin. Marinate the chicken breasts for one hour in the marinade. In a bowl, combine the macadamia nuts and bread crumbs. In another bowl, whisk the three eggs. Dredge each chicken breasts in plain flour, coat with beaten egg then coat with the macadamia nut mixture. Heat the 2 T olive oil and butter in a sauté pan. Sauté each chicken breast for 3 minutes on each side until golden and cooked through.

CHICKEN SPAGHETTI CASSEROLE

4 cups boiled chicken, chopped
1 cup celery, sliced
1 cup bell pepper, diced
1 cup onion, diced
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
1 cup chicken broth
16 oz. uncooked spaghetti noodles, broken into thirds
1 cup grated cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350.

In 2 1/2 quart casserole dish mix together chicken, celery, green pepper and onion. Blend together soup and broth and add spaghetti pieces.

Pour soup mixture over chicken and mix all together. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake, uncovered for 45 minutes.

Serves 8-10

Note: I made this for dinner last night and it was very good.

BAKED SPINACH MOSTACCIOLI

1 (16 ounce) package mostaccioli pasta (cooked in lightly salted water, drained and divided)
1 (10 ounce) package frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 (8 ounce) package mushrooms, halved
2 (28 ounce) jars spaghetti sauce
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Place half the cooked/drained mostaccioli in a lightly greased 2 1/2 quart casserole dish; top with spinach and mushrooms (sprinkle with a little salt and pepper).

Place remaining mostaccioli over mushroom mixture; pour spaghetti sauce over top. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake in a 350° oven for 30 minutes.

10 servings

COCONUT SHRIMP WITH PINEAPPLE-GINGER TARTAR SAUCE

1 lb. large raw shrimp (16-18 per lb.)
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 egg
1/2 cup water (approximately)
3 cups flaked sweetened coconut

Peanut oil for deep frying Peel shrimp, including tails. Butterfly the shrimp by making a slice down length of back, being careful not to cut the shrimp completely in half. Spread the halves apart.

In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt. Add egg and enough water to produce a medium-thick batter the consistency of pancake batter. Beat until smooth. Spread coconut in a shallow bowl.

Heat 2 inches of oil in a wide, 4-inch-deep pan or a deep fryer. Heat until a cube of fresh bread dropped in the oil sizzles immediately, or until it reaches 350 degrees.

Dip shrimp in batter and shake off some of the excess. Roll in coconut. Fry a few at a time until golden brown, turning once. Frying time should be about 1 minute. Drain on paper towels. Serve with Pineapple-Ginger Tartar Sauce for dipping.

Makes 3 to 4 servings.

PINEAPPLE-GINGER TARTAR SAUCE

1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup minced sweet onion
1/2 tsp. powdered ginger
1 can (8 oz.) crushed pineapple, drained

Combine all ingredients. Cover and chill for 1 hour or more.

CHEESEBURGER n FRIES CASSEROLE

2 lbs lean ground beef
1 (10 1/2 ounce) can condensed golden mushroom soup, undiluted
1 (10 1/2 ounce) can condensed cheddar cheese soup, undiluted
1 (20 ounce) package crinkle-cut frozen french fries

In a skillet, brown the beef, drain. Stir in soups. Pour into a greased 13x9 baking dish.

Arrange French fries on top. Bake, uncovered, at 350* for 50-55 minutes or until the fries are golden brown.

6 servings

MEXICAN CHICKEN BAKE

2 c. coarsely crushed corn chips, divided
1 can (10 3/4 oz.) cream of chicken soup
1 can (10 oz.) enchilada sauce
3 c. cubed, cooked chicken
1/2 c. finely chopped onions
1 c. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

In greased baking dish, combine 1 c. corn chips and remaining ingredients except for cheese.

Bake at 375° for 30 minutes. Top with remaining corn chips and Cheddar cheese. Bake another 5 minutes until cheese is melted.

5 servings

LASAGNA CUPS

1/2 lb lean ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup thick pizza sauce
1 large egg, beaten
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1 (10 ounce) can refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Add the first 3 ingredients to a large skillet; cook over medium heat, stirring until beef crumbles and is no longer pink; drain well.

To the beef in the skillet, add in the pizza sauce; stir to combine; remove from heat. Stir together the egg and ricotta cheese.

Separate biscuits and split each biscuit in half. Press each biscuit half on bottom and up sides of lightly greased muffin pans. Spoon meat mixture evenly into biscuit cups. Top evenly with egg mixture; sprinkle each cup with cheese.

Bake in a 375° for 18-20 minutes or until golden. Serve immediately.

20 appetizers

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SIDE DISHES

CREAMY MASHED POTATO BAKE

1 1/3 cups canned, french fried onions
3 cups hot mashed potatoes
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup milk
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 cup shredded cheddar

Preheat oven to 350°. Combine potatoes, sour cream, milk and garlic powder; mix well.

Spoon half of mixture into a 2 qt. baking dish. Sprinkle on 1/3 cup french fried onions and ˝ cup cheese. Top with the rest of potatoes.

Bake for 30 minutes, until potatoes are hot. Top with the rest of the onions and cheese. Bake additional 5 minutes, until onions are golden brown.

SPANISH GREEN BEANS

2 T. butter or margarine
2 onions, chopped
1/2 c. rice
1 (1 lb.) can tomatoes and juice
1/8 t. black pepper
1 (15 1/2 oz.) can cut green beans
1 t. salt (optional)
dash of Tabasco sauce or to taste
1/3 c. water

Cook rice according to package directions. Set aside. Melt butter in a 2-quart-size sauce pan; add onions and cook until soft. Cut up tomatoes and pour into the onions. Add green beans, pepper, salt, Tabasco sauce and water. Cover and simmer until beans are tender (about 5 minutes). If recipe is too dry, add more water. Add the cooked rice, mix and cook about 5 more minutes or until hot and bubbly.

BUTTERNUT SQUASH and APPLE HASH

3 strips bacon, diced
2 T. unsalted butter
3 c. medium, raw, diced, butternut squash (peeled)
3/4 c. finely chopped onion
1/2 t. chopped fresh garlic
1 c. chopped, unpeeled apples
1 1/2 t. chopped, fresh thyme
salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste

In a large frying pan, over medium heat, cook the diced bacon until it is brown and crisp. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside to drain.

Add butter to the bacon drippings and, when it is melted, add the butternut squash, onions and garlic. Saute over medium heat for 5 minutes.

Add the apples and the thyme and continue to saute for 10-15 minutes or until the squash is tender. Return the diced bacon to the pan and season with salt and pepper.

Makes 8 servings

SPINACH SALAD WITH CHERRIES

Dressing
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Salad
5 cups cleaned torn spinach leaves -- stems removed
1 cup bite-size fresh pineapple wedges
1/2 cup dried tart cherries
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
Crumbled Feta cheese -- if desired

For the dressing, combine oil, vinegar, honey and pepper in a medium bowl; mix well.

For the salad, combine spinach with pineapple, cherries and onion in a large salad bowl. Spoon dressing over spinach mixture; mix to coat salad with dressing. Serve topped with Feta cheese, if desired.

Serves 6

STRAWBERRY SALAD

2 heads of romaine hearts, torn into pieces and chilled in ice water
1 pt. fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
1 med. red onion, halved and thinly sliced
1/2 C. almonds, toasted
2 C. mayonnaise
2/3 C. granulated sugar
1/3 C. half & half cream
1/3 C. strawberry or raspberry vinegar
2 T. poppy seeds
2-3 T. strawberry jam

Prepare the romaine as indicated, then remove from the water and wrap in a large terry cloth towel to dry. Keep refrigerated until preparing the salad.

In a large salad-type bowl, combine the lettuce and the next 3 ingredients and toss to combine.

In a medium-size bowl, combine the remaining ingredients and mix well. Just before serving, pour the dressing over the salad, toss well and serve.

Serves 6-8.

DAIQUIRI MUFFINS 

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs, at room temperature
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/2 cup yogurt (regular, low-fat, or nonfat)
1/3 cup white rum or golden rum (do not use dark rum)
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon grated lime zest

In a mixing bowl, whisk the flour, 1 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt until well blended; set aside.

In another bowl, lightly whisk the eggs; then whisk in the melted butter, yogurt, rum, lime juice, and lime zest until smooth. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the flour mixture until moistened.

Spoon batter into well greased muffin cups to 3/4 full. Dust the tops of the unbaked muffins with the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar-should be just a light coating of sugar.

Bake in a 400° oven for 23 minutes or until muffins have rounded, lightly browned, cracked tops and pick comes out with a few moist crumbs attached.

Place pan on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Gently rock each muffin back and forth to release it. Remove muffins from the pan and cool for 5 minutes on wire rack.

To store--cool completely and seal in airtight container or in freezer-safe plastic bags.

Cosmopolitan Muffins: substitute vodka for the rum; reduce the lime juice to 1/4 cup; add 1 1/2 tablespoon frozen cranberry juice concentrate, thawed, with the remaining lime juice.

Apple Daiquiri Muffins: substitute spiced rum for the white or gold rum; add 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon with the salt; stir 3/4 cup chopped dried apple into the batter just before adding the dry ingredients.

12 -18 muffins

DESSERT RECIPES

CARROT CAKE CHEESECAKE

Cheesecake:
16 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon flour
3 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Carrot Cake:
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Dash salt
1 (8 1/2 oz.) can crushed pineapple packed in juice, well-drained and juice reserved
1 cup grated carrots
1/2 cup flaked or shredded coconut
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Pineapple Cream Cheese Frosting:
2 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon butter, softened
1 3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon reserved pineapple juice
Dash of salt

Cheesecake: In large bowl of electric mixer, beat together cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Beat in flour, eggs and vanilla extract until smooth. Set aside. Meanwhile prepare carrot cake.

Carrot Cake: In large bowl, combine oil, sugar, eggs and vanilla extract, blending thoroughly. Stir in flour, baking soda, cinnamon and dash of salt, mixing well. Stir in drained pineapple, carrots, coconut and walnuts.

Spread 11/2 cups carrot cake batter over bottom of greased 9- or 91/2-inch springform pan. Drop large spoonsful of cream cheese batter over carrot cake batter; top with large spoonfuls of remaining carrot cake batter. Repeat with remaining cream cheese batter, spreading evenly with a knife. Do not marble with a knife. Bake in preheated 350 F oven for 50 to 65 minutes or until cake is set and cooked through. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate.

When cake is cold, prepare Pineapple Cream Cheese Frosting. In a bowl of electric mixer, combine cream cheese, butter, confectioners' sugar, vanilla extract, reserved pineapple juice and dash of salt. Beat until smooth and of spreading consistency. Frost top of cheesecake. Refrigerate 3 to 4 hours before serving.

Makes 1 (9-inch) cheesecake

SOUTHERN CREAM COOKIES
 
1 cup shortening
2 cups sugar
3 well beaten eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sour cream
5 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon extract

Cream shortening and 2 cups sugar.

Add eggs, vanilla, sour cream, lemon juice and lemon extract. Mix well.

In separate bowl, mix flour with baking powder, salt and baking soda.
Add to creamed mixture.

Drop from spoon onto greased cookie sheet. Grease bottom of small glass, dip into sugar and gently press cookie flat.

Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

VANILLA BEAN CHEESECAKE WITH TROPICAL FRUIT SALSA

1 1/2 cups walnut pieces
1 3/4 cups sugar, divided use
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 cups sour cream
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract, divided use
2 pounds cream cheese, softened
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, seeds scraped
4 eggs, room temperature
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 cup whipping cream
Tropical fruit salsa (recipe not given; toss diced kiwi, mango & pineapple with honey, lime juice and chopped fresh mint)

Heat oven to 350. Grease a 10-inch springform pan. In a food processor, pulse the walnuts with 1 /4 cup of the sugar until finely ground. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles moist sand. Press into the bottom of the pan. Bake for 12 minutes or until lightly browned at edges.

In a small bowl, mix the sour cream with 1/4 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla as topping. Set aside.

Reduce oven to 300 degrees. In a standing mixer fitted with paddle (or use a hand mixer) and large mixer bowl, beat cream cheese at low speed with remaining 1 1/4 cups sugar and the vanilla seeds just until combined. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, scraping down the bowl each time. Add remaining 2 teaspoons vanilla and the almond extract. Slowly beat in the cream until smooth. Pour cheesecake batter into the pan and bake for 65 to 70 minutes, until lightly golden but still a bit jiggly in the center.

Immediately pour the sour cream topping over the hot cheesecake and smooth surface. Return to the oven and bake 5 more minutes. Transfer to a rack and cool to room temperature. Run a sharp, thin-bladed knife around the cake and remove the ring. Chill the cake 3 hours, then cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight before serving. Top with a version of tropical fruit salsa or any fruit or berry mixture of choice.

Yield: 10-inch cheesecake

BUTTER CRUNCH SLICES

Filling:
1 cup (6-ounce package) butterscotch pieces, melted
1 cup finely chopped salted peanuts
1/4 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 tablespoon softened butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Dough:
1/4 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup softened butter
1 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup quick-cooking rolled oats

Combine all ingredients for filling. Chill while preparing dough.

In large mixing bowl, combine ingredients for dough. Blend well with mixer. Divide dough in half. Pat out each half on waxed paper to a 12- by 6-inch rectangle. Spoon filling down center of each rectangle. Fold one side of dough around filling and then the other. Gently shape into a log.

Wrap; chill at least 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut dough into 1/4-inch slices. Place on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Cool 1 minute before removing from cookie sheets.

Makes about 6 dozen.

EASY BANANA OR COCONUT CREAM PIE

1 pre-baked deep-dish 9-inch piecrust
2 medium bananas, thinly sliced and sprinkled with lemon juice
1 can (14 ounces) condensed milk
1 cup cold water
1 package (3.4-ounces) instant vanilla or banana cream pudding mix
1 cup flaked coconut (optional)
1 container (8-ounces) frozen whipped topping, thawed

In a large bowl, combine condensed milk with cold water and whisk together to blend. Whisk in dry pudding mix and coconut and continue whisking for 2 to 3 minutes.

Fold in 1 1/2 cups of the whipped topping and stir gently to blend.

Place well-drained bananas in bottom of pre-baked piecrust.

Pour filling over bananas. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours to allow pudding to set. Serve topped with remaining frozen topping and sprinkled with toasted or tinted coconut to garnish.

Serves 8.

SWIRLED PEANUT BUTTER CHOCOLATE CHEESECAKE BARS

Crust:
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup granulated sugar

Filling:
2 packages (8-ounces each) cream cheese, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 can (12-ounces) Carnation evaporated milk
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups Nestle peanut butter & milk chocolate morsels

Garnish:
Whole strawberries, washed but uncapped

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. For crust: combine crumbs, butter and sugar in a medium bowl; press onto bottom of an ungreased 13x9-inch baking pan.

For filling: beat cream cheese, sugar and flour in the large bowl of an electric mixer until smooth. Gradually beat in evaporated milk, eggs and vanilla extract.

Microwave morsels in a medium, microwave-safe bowl on medium-high power for 1 minute, stirring until smooth. If necessary, microwave at additional 10 to 20-second intervals, stirring until smooth.

Stir 1 cup of the cream cheese mixture into the melted morsels. Pour remaining plain batter over crust. Spoon chocolate mixture over plain mixture on crust. Gently swirl with a spoon or fork.

Bake in preheated oven for 40 to 45 minutes. Cool completely on wire rack, then refrigerate until firm. To serve: cut into squares or bars and top with strawberries.

STRAWBERRY MAGIC CAKE

1 package (10 oz.) miniature marshmallows
1 box (18 oz.) yellow cake mix, prepared per package directions
1 box (3 oz.- 4 serving size) strawberry gelatin powder
1 box (16 oz.) frozen sliced strawberries, slightly thawed, but do not drain
2/3 c. cold water

Spread marshmallows evenly over the bottom of a greased (10 x 13 x 2 inch) baking pan. Spread prepared cake batter evenly over marshmallows. Sprinkle dry gelatin powder evenly over the cake batter.

Spoon slightly thawed strawberries here and there over gelatin powder and then drizzle evenly with 2/3 c. water, but do not stir it up.

Slip cake carefully onto center rack of a 350° oven to bake 55 minutes to 1 hour or until tests done in center and top is golden brown.

Let cool in pan on a rack at least 30 minutes before cutting. Refrigerate leftovers to serve within 1 week, garnishing each serving with Cool Whip or whipped cream and additional strawberries. Freezes well.

Serves 8

SALTED NUT ROLL

16 oz. jar dry roasted peanuts
1 can sweetened condensed milk
12 oz. pkg. peanut butter chips
3 tbsps. butter
1 pkg. mini marshmallows

Put half of the peanuts on bottom of a 9x13" baking dish. In a saucepan, melt sweetened condensed milk, peanut butter chips and butter; stir in marshmallows, but do not melt, pour over the nuts and spread out evenly; top with remaining nuts. Let bars cool before cutting.

OREO BARS

16 ozs. Oreos, crushed
1 stick margarine

Combine and press into a 9 x 13" pan.

1 cup mini chocolate chips
1 can sweetened condensed milk

Combine and melt in microwave. Pour over crust.

1 cup chocolate chips
Nuts to taste

Sprinkle chips over top. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes.

HAWAIIAN PINEAPPLE CAKE

1 box yellow cake mix
20 oz. can crushed pineapple
8 ozs. cream cheese, softened
1 cup cold milk
1 small box instant vanilla pudding
8 ozs. whipped topping
Coconut and nuts

Bake cake per directions in a 9x13" pan; let cool. Poke holes in top of cake with handle of a wooden spoon. Partially drain the pineapple and pour over cake.

Combine cream cheese with milk and pudding; beat until smooth; spread on top of cake.

Spread on the whipped topping; garnish with some nuts and coconut.

CHERRY SQUARES

First layer:
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine

Second layer:
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup flaked coconut
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup maraschino cherries, cut up

Icing:
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon milk
Cherry juice or red food coloring (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

For first layer, crumble flour, brown sugar and butter together well. Press into ungreased 9- by 9-inch pan. Bake for 15 minutes.

For second layer, beat eggs slightly and add the rest of the ingredients in the order given. Spread over first layer. Return to oven and bake for 25 minutes or until brown.

For icing, beat together ingredients in small bowl and spread over cooled squares. If you want the icing to remain white, leave out the cherry juice or food coloring.

Makes about 16 squares.

PINA COLADA CAKE

1 cup moist flaked coconut
1 pkg. White Cake Mix (not yellow) (18 oz.)
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/3 cup oil
1/4 cup light rum
4 egg whites
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/2 cup sugar

Heat oven to 350. Reserve 1/2 cup of flaked coconut for frosting. Grease and flour 13x9 pan.

In large bowl, blend cake mix, water, 1/2 cup pineapple juice, oil, 1/4 cup rum and egg whites at low speed until moistened; beat 2 minutes at HIGHEST speed. Stir in 1/2 cup coconut. Pour into prepared pan.

Bake for 25 to 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes.

In small saucepan, heat 1/2 cup pineapple juice and sugar to boiling. Using long-tined fork, prick holes in the cake at 1/2" intervals. A teaspoon at a time, drizzle hot pineapple mixture over cake. Cool completely. If it looks like the cake is getting soaked, then stop pouring in the pineapple/sugar mix.

Frosting:
3 cups powdered sugar (sifted, optional)
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
1 Tbs. dark rum
1/2 cup reserved flaked coconut
Pineapple juice

In a large bowl, mix powdered sugar and butter, add 1 teaspoon vanilla, add 1 tablespoon of rum. If mixture is too thick, add a tablespoon or two of rum or pineapple juice. Add 1/2 cup flaked coconut, mix well. Keep adding small amounts of pineapple juice to make the frosting of a more spreadable consistency.

KITCHEN TIPS

Always break lettuce in pieces; never cut it with a knife. It will help prevent the edges from turning brown.

Fried potatoes will be deliciously golden brown if sprinkled lightly with flour before frying.

To determine whether an egg is fresh, immerse it in a pan of cool, salted water. If it sinks, it is fresh; if it rises to the surface, throw it away.

When a recipe calls for adding raw eggs to a hot mixture, always begin by adding a small amount of the hot mixture to the beaten eggs slowly to avoid curdling.

For easy cake decorating, first draw the designs on the frosted cake with a toothpick. Then fill an empty plastic ketchup squeeze bottle with colored frosting and squeeze it out slowly over the toothpick lines.

To keep noodles or rice from boiling over, add a tablespoon of butter or oil to the water.

RESTAURANT RECIPES

NORTH POND ROASTED ONION SOUP

3 sweet onions, such as Vidalia, Walla Walla Sweet, Maui, Texas Sweet or Spanish, quartered
1 yellow onion, quartered
4 cloves garlic
3 Tbsps. canola or other cooking oil
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground white pepper
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
1 shallot, thinly sliced
1 cup whipping cream
6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
6 Tbsps. unsalted butter, cubed
Salt and pepper
Herbed croutons, optional
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, optional

Coat: Toss sweet onions, yellow onion and whole peeled garlic with the oil and the salt and pepper, making sure the vegetables are well-coated. Tumble onions and garlic into an oven-friendly pot that fits the ingredients in a single layer.

Roast: Slide pot, uncovered, into a 375 degree oven. Roast for 40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes or so, to allow for even cooking.

Add: Toss in the carrots, celery and shallot. Roast an additional 10 minutes. Add cream, stir to coat all the ingredients, and cook 10 more minutes.

Simmer: Remove pot from the oven and pour in 5 cups of the broth (set aside the remaining 1 cup). Bring to a boil on the stovetop. Turn down the heat and simmer 10 minutes.

Blend: Puree the soup in the pot using an immersion blender, or in batches (carefully) using a countertop blender. Add the butter and swirl smooth. Press the puree through a fine-meshed strainer.

Adjust: If the soup seems too thick, stir in some of the remaining broth. Season with salt and pepper.

Serve: Enjoy hot, either solo or accompanied by herbed croutons and Parmesan cheese.

Servings: 6

Source: Chicago Tribune

CRAWFORD BAKERY ROLLS
Northville, Michigan

3 c. milk
3/4 lb. margarine or butter
9 whole eggs
1 1/4 c. sugar
1 T. salt
7 c. flour
2 packages dry yeast (not rapid-rise)
2 T. sugar
3/4 c. warm water 95°
7 c. flour

Heat the milk and margarine until melted (but not hot). In a large bowl mix eggs, 1 1/4 c. sugar and salt. Add milk mixture and 7 c. flour and mix with hands. Put yeast, warm water and sugar into a bowl and set aside to proof. When thick and bubbly mix until smooth and add to the mixture. Add remaining 7 c. flour, one cup at a time, mixing with your hands (dough will be very soft and sticky - don't add more flour).

Grease the top with margarine, turn over and grease again. Cover with a damp towel and let rise in a warm place 20 to 30 minutes (this step may be omitted if you're in a hurry). Punch down the dough and divide into quarters, halves or use all of the dough.

Roll out into a circle 1/4 inch thick on a floured surface. Cut into 12 wedges if using a quarter of the dough; 24 wedges if using half or 48 for all the dough. Roll up the wedges from the wide end to the pointed end, place on a cookie sheet and let rise until doubled (about 1 hour).

Bake in the center of a preheated 350° oven for about 20 minutes or until golden brown (if you like, a pan of water can be placed on the bottom rack of the oven). If using a quarter of the dough at a time (this makes 1 dozen) the remaining quarters may be put into floured Ziploc bags to be refrigerated for 2 days or to freeze for 1 month. Thaw the frozen dough over night in the refrigerator before using. The dough does not have to be at room temperature to roll out.

Yield 4 dozen rolls

Note: you can also use this dough to make cinnamon rolls, pecan rolls, tea rings or Danish rolls.

SANDERS CARAMEL FROSTING

1 lb. caramels
1/2 c. hot water
1 c. sweet butter or margarine
1 c. confectioners sugar

Place caramels and water in a double boiler. Heat and stir until smooth and creamy. Cool. Place butter in a mixing bowl, add sugar and mix at low speed to a smooth paste. Mix at medium speed adding caramel mixture.

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