Spike's & Jamie's Recipe Collection & a Whole Lot More!

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Recipes from Spike & Jamie

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Contents Disk 237

How to use these pages:  Below is a list of the recipes on this page.  You can either scroll down the page and look at all of the recipes, or look at the titles.  When you find one that seems interesting, use your web browsers FIND function to take you directly to that recipe (on my IE browser it's Edit/Find (on this page)   or Ctrl - F on your keyboard).

APRICOT SALAD

BEAN AND SAUSAGE BAKE

BEEF AND ANDOUILLE BURGERS

BEER BRINED GRILLED PORK CHOPS

BEST HAM BISCUITS

BLENDER FRENCH DRESSING

BLUEBERRY KUCHEN

BLUEBERRY LIME JAM

BLUEBERRY SAUCE

BREAKFAST SCRAMBLE

BROCCOLI SOUP

CANADIAN CHEESE SOUP

CELERY BAKE

CHICKEN SAUSAGE PATTIES

CHOCOLATE CHIP SHELLS

COPPER PENNIES

CORN PUDDING

CRISP TENDER VEGGIES

CRISPY HERBED CHICKEN

CRUNCHY GARDEN SALSA

GRAHAM CRACKER CRISPY BITS

GRILLED LEMON HERB POUSSINS

GRILLED WHITEFISH

HARVEST THYME CHICKEN BAKE

HERBS AND MENOPAUSE SYMPTOMS

HOT DIP

ICE CREAM COOKIE DESSERT

JAMAICAN PORK WITH MELON SALSA

JELL O CAKE

MAKING FRESH MOZZARELLA

MANWICHES

MEAT AND CHICKEN

MEXICAN CORN BREAD

MINTED CHICKEN SALAD WITH SUMMER FRU

NEW MEXICAN GREEN CHILI SAUCE

NEW POTATO ROSEMARY AND GARLIC PIZZA

NINETY MINUTE BREAD

NUTTY OVEN FRIED CHICKEN

ONE PAN BANANA NUT BREAD

ONE STEP POUND CAKE

ORANGE CHICKEN and VEGETABLE STIR FR

ORANGE UPSIDE DOWN CAKE

PIZZA SOUP

POUND CAKE

RED AND GREEN HOT CHILI PEPPERS

RED HOT CHILI SOUP

SARA LEES POUND CAKE CLONE

SAVORY MELON SORBET

SEARED SEA SCALLOPS ON SWEET PEA PUR

SOUP BOWLS

SPINACH DIP

STEAK SANDWICH WITH CREAMY HORSERADI

STRAWBERRY BANANA DESSERT

STUFFED POBLANO CHILIES

THE OFFAL TRUTH

TIPS FOR CAMPERS

TOMATO FLORENTINE SOUP OR SAUCE WITH

UPSIDE DOWN CAKE

 

 

 

APRICOT SALAD

2 (6oz) pkg apricot gelatin

2 cups boiling water

1 cup cool water

1/3 cup sugar

1 (8oz) carton frozen whipped topping, thawed

1 (8oz) plain yogurt or sour cream

2 bananas, sliced

lemon juice

Use small amount of lemon juice to keep color of bananas. Dissolve gelatin

in boiling water. Add sugar. Fold in whipped topping and sour cream or plain yogurt. Add bananas and pour into 12 X 8 X 2 inch dish. Cover and Chill until firm.

BEAN AND SAUSAGE BAKE

 

2 pounds Pork Sausage -- Hot spiced

1 medium Green Pepper -- chopped fine

1 medium Onion -- chopped fine

31 ounces Pork and Beans -- (lg can)

15 1/2 ounces Great Northern Beans -- rinsed and drained

15 1/2 ounces Blackeyed Peas -- rinsed and drained

15 ounces Garbanzo Beans -- rinsed and drained

16 ounces Kidney Beans, canned -- rinsed and drained

1 1/2 cups Catsup

3/4 cup Brown Sugar, packed

2 teaspoons Mustard Powder

 

In a Dutch oven, over medium heat, brown sausage. Drain and add green pepper and onion, then saute until tender. Drain again. Add remaining

ingredients and mix well. Pour into a greased 13 x 9 inch baking pan.

Cover and bake at 300 degrees F for 1 hour, then uncover and bake an

additional 20 - 30 minutes to release excess moisture.

 

To freeze for later use, cover tightly and freeze at the point before

baking. To use, thaw overnight in refrigerator and bake according to above

directions. Freezes for up to 6 months. Source: "adapted from a recipe in "Taste of Home" magazine"

BEEF AND ANDOUILLE BURGERS

WITH ASIAGO CHEESE

Made with spicy sausages and smoky grilled onion, these are not your standard burgers.

4 oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1 tablespoon whole-grain Dijon mustard

 

8 ounces andouille sausages,* cut into 1-inch pieces

2 1/2 pounds ground beef (15% fat)

2 large shallots, minced

2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons ground black pepper

1 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed

 

6 large sesame-seed hamburger buns

6 1/3-inch-thick slices red onion

Olive oil

1 cup coarsely grated Asiago cheese**

 

1 7- to 7 1/2-ounce jar roasted red peppers, drained

 

Finely chop sun-dried tomatoes in processor. Blend in mayonnaise and mustard. Transfer to small bowl. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill.)

 

Finely chop andouille sausages in processor. Transfer to large bowl. Add beef, shallots, salt, pepper, and crushed fennel seeds. Stir with fork just until blended. Form mixture into six 1-inch-thick patties.

 

Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Grill hamburger buns until golden, about 2 minutes. Transfer to platter. Brush onion slices with oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill until golden, about 7 minutes per side. Grill hamburgers to desired doneness, about 5 minutes per side for medium-rare. Sprinkle cheese over top of burgers.

 

Spread cut sides of hamburger buns with sun-dried-tomato mayonnaise. Top bottom halves of buns with hamburgers, then red peppers. Top with onion slices. Cover with top halves of buns and serve. Makes 6 servings

 

*Smoked pork-and-beef sausages, sold at specialty foods stores and supermarkets. Kielbasa can be substituted.

 

 

 

 

BEER BRINED GRILLED PORK CHOPS

 

Brining the chops makes them moist.

2 cups water

2 cups dark lager beer

1/4 cup coarse salt

3 tablespoons (packed) dark brown sugar

3 tablespoons mild-flavored (light) molasses

1 cup ice cubes

6 1- to 1 1/4-inch-thick center-cut bone-in pork chops

 

7 large garlic cloves, minced

3 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper

2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons dried sage leaves

 

Combine 2 cups water, beer, 1/4 cup coarse salt, sugar, and molasses in large bowl. Stir until salt and sugar dissolve. Stir in ice. Place pork chops in large re-sealable plastic bag. Pour beer brine over pork chops; seal bag. Refrigerate 4 hours, turning bag occasionally.

 

Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Remove pork chops from beer brine; pat dry. Mix garlic, pepper, 2 teaspoons salt, and sage in small bowl. Rub garlic mixture over both sides of pork chops. Grill pork chops until instant-read thermometer inserted into center of chops registers 145°F to 150°F, about 10 minutes per side, occasionally moving chops to cooler part of rack if burning. Transfer chops to platter; cover with foil, and let stand 5 minutes. Serves 6

BEST HAM BISCUITS

 

13/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (divided)

3/4 cup milk

3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese

2 ounces ham, chopped into small pieces (about 1/4 cup)

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil

1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives

2 ounces ham, thinly sliced (about 12 slices)

 

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

 

In a mixing bowl, mix together flour, salt and baking powder. Add 1/4 cup olive oil to the flour mixture. Stir with a fork just until olive oil is incorporated into flour. Do not over-mix. Add milk, parmesan cheese and chopped ham to flour mixture. Stir until ingredients are combined.

 

Turn dough onto a lightly floured board. With a floured rolling pin, roll out the dough to about 1/4 inch thick. Cut the biscuits with a round biscuit cutter. Place on an un-greased baking sheet. Bake until lightly browned -- 12 to 15 minutes.

 

Combine the remaining 6 tablespoons olive oil, parsley, basil and chives in a small bowl. Allow the biscuits to cool slightly after removing from the oven. Cut biscuits in half and drizzle the olive oil mixture on the inside of each biscuit. Stuff each biscuit with a ham slice. Serve while still slightly warm

 

BLENDER FRENCH DRESSING

 

1 cup salad oil

1/4 cup vinegar -- (or lemon juice)

1/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon dry mustard

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 thinly sliced onion

 

Using STIR setting of electric blender, blend for 25 seconds or until onion

is minced. Serve over salads. Yield: about 1 1/2 cups (about 6 servings).

BLUEBERRY KUCHEN

Makes 9 servings

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons granulated sugar (divided)

1/4 cup vegetable shortening

2/3 cup 1 percent milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

11/2 teaspoons grated lemon peel (yellow part only; divided)

1 egg

1 or 2 cups fresh blueberries

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift together flour, baking powder, salt and 3/4 cup sugar. Add shortening, milk, vanilla and 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel. Beat with electric mixer on medium speed 3 minutes, or 300 strokes by hand.

 

Add egg and beat with mixer 2 minutes longer or 200 strokes by hand.

 

Turn into greased 8-inch square pan.

 

Lightly stir together blueberries, remaining 3 tablespoons sugar and remaining 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel. Sprinkle over batter in pan.

 

Bake 40 to 45 minutes, or until lightly browned. Cool slightly in pan. Cut in squares and serve warm.

BLUEBERRY LIME JAM

Makes about 6 half-pints

41/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

1 2-ounce package powdered pectin

5 cups granulated sugar

1 tablespoon grated lime peel (green part only)

1/3 cup fresh lime juice

 

Wash 6 half-pint jars and fill with hot water until needed. Prepare lids as manufacturer directs.

 

Meanwhile, crush blueberries one layer at a time.

 

Combine crushed blueberries and pectin in a 6-quart kettle. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Add sugar, stirring until dissolved. Stir in grated lime peel and lime juice. Return to a rolling boil. Boil hard 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Skim foam if necessary.

 

Drain hot jars. Ladle hot jam into 1 hot jar at a time, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Wipe jar rim with a clean, damp cloth. Attach lid. Fill and close remaining jars. Process in a boiling-water canner for 10 minutes (15 minutes at 1,000 to 6,000 feet; 20 minutes above 6,000 feet).

BLUEBERRY SAUCE

Makes 11/2 cups

2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

3/4 cup water

11/2 tablespoons cornstarch

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon lemon peel (yellow part only; optional)

1 tablespoon lemon juice (optional)

 

In a medium saucepan, bring blueberries, water, cornstarch, sugar and lemon peel to a boil over medium heat and simmer 5 minutes, stirring constantly.

 

Remove from heat and stir in lemon peel and/or juice, if desired.

 

Store covered in refrigerator.

 

This sauce may be served hot or cold and is delicious served over ice cream or pancakes, waffles, cheesecake or pound cake for an elegant, quick dessert.

BREAKFAST SCRAMBLE

 

Cooking Spray

1 tomato, chopped

1/4 cup green pepper, chopped

1 onion, chopped

3 eggs

1 1/2 cups egg substitute

1/4 cup milk

1/4 cup cheddar cheese (I used fat free and it worked well)

1/8 tsp. pepper

1/8 tsp. hot sauce

Seasoned salt to taste

 

Coat a skillet with cooking spray. Add tomato, green pepper and onion; saute

until tender. Remove from skillet. Combine eggs and other ingredients in bowl.

Beat with whisk. Pour mixture into skillet and cook over low heat, stirring gently. Cook till mixture is firm, but still moist. Remove from heat. Stir in vegetables and heat through.

BROCCOLI SOUP

1 stick butter

1 onion, chopped

2 cups milk

1 1/2 cup Velveeta cheese

1 pkg. chopped broccoli

Melt butter in skillet; add onion. Saute` onion until clear. Add enough flour to thicken. Add milk, broccoli, cheese, salt and pepper to taste. Simmer until bubbly.

CANADIAN CHEESE SOUP

1/4 Cup butter

1/2 Cup finely diced carrots

1/2 cup finely diced onions

1/2 cup finely diced celery

1 1/2 Tbsp. cornstarch

1/4 cup flour

1 qt. chicken broth

1 qt. whole milk

1 lb. American processed cheese

1/8 tsp. baking soda

salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter and sauté vegetables. Add flour and cornstarch; cook until bubbly, stirring while cooking. Slowly add chicken broth and milk while stirring. Add soda and cheese. Stir until cheese dissolves. Add salt and pepper.

CELERY BAKE

 

1 1/2 cup sliced celery

1 cup sliced onion

boiling water

3 large hard boiled eggs, coarsely chopped with out the yokes

2 1/2 Tablespoons flour

1 1/4 cup skim milk

1/8 tsp. pepper

1/8 tsp. paprika

pinch of cayenne pepper

2 Tbsp. margarine

1/2 cup dry bread crumbs, whole wheat preferably

 

Cook celery and onion in boiling water until tender. Drain. Turn into 1 quart casserole dish. Scatter chopped egg white over the top. Measure flour into saucepan, whisk part of the milk in until smooth. Add remaining milk, pepper, paprika and cayenne. Heat and stir until it boils and thickens. Pour over casserole. Lift vegetables here and there so a bit of the sauce goes to the bottom. Melt margarine in small dish in microwave. Stir in bread crumbs and then spread over the top of casserole. Bake uncovered in 350 o F oven for about 20 to 30 minutes until browned and hot. Makes 5 servings.

CHICKEN SAUSAGE PATTIES

WITH APPLE AND SAGE

 

1 lb ground chicken breast

1 small Golden Delicious or Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and shredded

(3/4 cup)

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh sage

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 large egg, lightly beaten

 

Prepare grill for cooking.

 

Stir together all ingredients in a large bowl until combined well.

 

Form rounded 3/4 cups of sausage mixture into 2-inch-diameter patties using moistened hands. When fire is medium-hot (you can hold your hand 5 inches above rack 3 to 4 seconds), grill patties on lightly oiled grill rack, turning once, until cooked through, about 6 minutes. Makes 8 servings

 

Cooks' notes:

. Patties can be grilled 1 day ahead and reheated in a 350°F oven 15 minutes.

. You can use a lightly oiled well-seasoned ridged grill pan to cook the patties.

CHOCOLATE CHIP SHELLS

Makes 3 dozen madeleines

4 eggs

1 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 tablespoon Cointreau liqueur (optional)

Grated peel from 1 orange (orange part only)

2 cups all-purpose flour

11/3 cups chocolate chips (divided)

1 cup unsalted butter, melted (2 sticks; see note)

Powdered sugar

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour shell-shaped (madeleine) pans.

 

Combine eggs, sugar, vanilla, Cointreau and orange peel in large bowl. Using the whisk of an electric mixer, beat until light in color.

 

In a separate bowl, mix flour and 1 cup chocolate chips. Fold the flour mixture and butter alternately into egg mixture, beginning and ending with the flour. Pour into prepared pans.

 

Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until golden around edges. Cool. Sprinkle with the powdered sugar.

 

Melt remaining 1/3 cup chocolate chips in small bowl in the microwave oven. Drizzle over shells.

 

Note: Use real butter or stick margarine. Do not substitute reduced-fat spreads.

 

COPPER PENNIES

 

2 pounds Carrots -- peeled, 1/4" slices

1/2 cup Vegetable Oil

1 cup Sugar

1 large Onion -- diced

1 large Green Pepper -- diced

6 ounces Tomato Juice

3/4 cup Red Wine Vinegar

1 teaspoon Prepared Mustard

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon Salt

1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper

 

In a large saucepan, cook carrots until crisp-tender, then drain. Combine all remaining ingredients in a large bowl, and mix well. Add carrots and stir until well mixed. Cover and refrigerate about 4 hours. Serve cold as a salad, or warm it and use as a side dish. Store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

 

CORN PUDDING

 

1 t salt

2 pkg. frozen whole kernel corn

4 eggs

1 qt sweet milk

8 Tb flour

6 Tb sugar

3 Tb melted butter

 

Mix dry items. Beat eggs; add to dry items. Add butter & milk; corn. Grease

casserole dish. Bake n 400 oven 45 min. Stir twice during first 15-20 min.

CRISP TENDER VEGGIES

 

Saute slices of one zucchini, and one yellow summer squash in 2 tablespoons

of lite olive oil, add salt, pepper and thyme to taste as the vegetables

cook until the squash is crisp-tender and lightly golden, about 10 minutes.

 

Small Side salad

 

Make a salad of arugula, wedges of ripe tomatoes, thinly sliced fennel and

roasted red peppers. Dress with a touch of balsamic-vinegar, fennel seeds,

olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.

For dessert

 

Broil or grill slices of fresh pineapple until lightly golden. (about 5 minutes, judge for yourself on how big the pieces or slices should be) Remove from the oven, sprinkle with brown sugar, and place back on the heat just until the sugar melts.

 

CRISPY HERBED CHICKEN

 

1 1/4 cups fresh whole-wheat breadcrumbs (about 2 slices)

1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil

1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon rind

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

3 tablespoons low-fat buttermilk

3/4 teaspoon lemon juice

6 (6-ounce) skinned chicken breast halves

Cooking spray

Lemon slices (optional)

Parsley sprigs (optional)

 

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2. Combine first 6 ingredients in a large heavy-duty, zip-top plastic bag. Seal bag, and shake well. Combine buttermilk and lemon juice; brush over both sides of chicken breast halves. Add chicken to bag; seal bag, and shake to coat chicken.

3. Place chicken on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle any remaining breadcrumb mixture over chicken. Bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees for 40 minutes or until done. Garnish with lemon slices and parsley sprigs,

if desired. Yield: 6 Servings

CRUNCHY GARDEN SALSA

Makes about 6 cups

 

2 cloves garlic, peeled, trimmed and minced

Pinch of salt

3 medium tomatoes, cut into bite-size chunks

1 sweet onion, peeled, trimmed and diced

2 carrots, grated

1 green bell pepper, trimmed and minced

1 red bell pepper, trimmed and minced

1 fresh chili pepper, your favorite, trimmed and minced (optional, or very mild to

please little kids; see note)

1 lemon or lime, juiced

 

In a bowl, using the back of a spoon, crush the minced garlic with the salt. Add the tomatoes, onion, carrots, bell peppers, chili pepper and lemon or lime juice. Stir and taste to see if you want more salt. Cover and chill.

 

Serve with burritos or chips, or the usual cast of characters that go with salsa at your house.

 

Note: Wear gloves when handling fresh, canned, dried or pickled chilies; the oils can cause a burning sensation on your skin.

GRAHAM CRACKER CRISPY BITS

 

Grease a 9x13 pan and line with graham crackers (broken into quarters)

Boil....1/2 cup of brown sugar and 1/2 cup butter for a short time and

then pour over the crackers and sprinkle with nuts.

Bake @ 350 degrees for 7 to 10 minutes.

 

Double and Triple the recipe cause you'll want to make batches. Keep a

batch to eat. Great cookie exchange recipe, no one will have it.

GRILLED LEMON HERB POUSSINS

1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter,

6 tablespoons softened and 2 tablespoons melted

1 tablespoon finely grated fresh lemon zest

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme plus 6 large sprigs

1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

6 poussins (young chickens) or small Cornish hens (3/4 to 1 lb each; preferably

organic)

2 lemons, each cut into 6 wedges

 

Prepare a charcoal grill (with lid) or preheat a gas grill on medium heat.

 

Stir together softened butter, zest, chopped thyme, rosemary, salt, and pepper with a fork.

 

Rinse poussins and pat dry. Season cavities with salt and pepper. Working from cavity end of each bird, run your fingers between skin and flesh of breasts and legs to loosen skin without tearing. Push lemon butter under skin and massage skin from outside to spread butter evenly over breasts and onto legs.

 

Insert a thyme sprig and 2 lemon wedges into cavity of each poussin, then tie legs together with kitchen string. Brush birds with melted butter and season with salt and pepper.

 

When fire is medium-hot (you can hold your hand 5 inches above rack 3 to 4 seconds), place birds, breast sides up, on grill rack and cover grill. Roast, turning every 15 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer inserted in fleshy part of a thigh registers 170°F, 45 to 55 minutes. Transfer birds to a platter and discard string, then let stand 10 minutes.

 

Cooks' note: . Poussins may be roasted in upper third of a 450°F oven 30 to 40 minutes. Use a shallow baking pan large enough to hold them without crowding.

Makes 6 servings.

GRILLED WHITEFISH

QUICK FIX: The greening of grilled whitefish

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, (Published: Wednesday, July 25, 2001)

 

Fresh, white-fleshed fish marries well with an assertive seasoning in this recipe for wasabi-glazed whitefish with vegetable slaw, a dish to grill and have on the table in about 25 minutes.

 

The wasabi's presence in the recipe is subtle, but fans of the bright-green Japanese condiment will appreciate the touch of its head-clearing heat. Wasabi is found in powdered or paste form in Japanese markets and in many larger supermarkets.

 

The recipe is among those in the Fast and Fabulous Fish chapter in Better Homes and Gardens "Dinnertime Express" (Mere- dith, $24.95). The book is designed to save you time and make life easier with its selection of about 260 recipes. Most can be made in less than half an hour and use fresh, easy-to-find ingredients.

 

WASABI-GLAZED WHITEFISH WITH VEGETABLE SLAW

 

Four 4-ounce fresh skinless white-fleshed fish fillets (such as whitefish, sea

bass or orange roughy), about 1 inch thick

2 tablespoons light soy sauce

1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon wasabi powder or 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish

1 medium zucchini, coarsely shredded (about 1ª cups)

1 cup sliced radishes

1 cup fresh pea pods

2 tablespoons snipped fresh chives

3 tablespoons rice vinegar

 

Rinse fish; pat dry. In a small bowl, combine soy sauce, 1/2 teaspoon of the sesame oil, 1/4 teaspoon of the sugar, and the wasabi powder. Brush soy mixture over fish.

 

Place fish in a well-greased wire grill basket, tucking under any thin edges. Grill fish on the rack of an uncovered grill directly over medium heat for 8 to 2 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork, turning basket once halfway through cooking.

 

Meanwhile, for vegetable slaw, combine in a medium bowl zucchini, radishes, pea pods and chives. Stir together vinegar, the remaining sesame oil and remaining sugar. Drizzle over the zucchini mixture; toss gently to coat.

Serve fish with slaw.

HARVEST THYME CHICKEN BAKE

Makes 6 servings

4 red-skin cooking apples, such as Rome Beauty or Winesap

2 cups boiling water

1 8-ounce package poultry stuffing mix

1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil (divided)

2/3 cup apple cider

3 broiler-fryer chicken breasts, halved (about 3 pounds)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup apple jelly, melted

Fresh thyme sprigs for garnish

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

 

Core and cut apples into 1/4-inch slices. Place apples and boiling water into a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook about 5 minutes, just until crisp-tender. Drain apples; set aside.

 

In a medium bowl, combine stuffing mix, thyme, 1/4 cup of the olive oil and the apple cider until well-blended. Spoon evenly into bottom of a 13-by-9-inch baking pan. Layer chicken, skin side up, atop stuffing. Sprinkle with salt; brush with remaining 1/4 cup olive oil.

 

Bake, uncovered, for 45 minutes. Remove from oven. Arrange reserved apples around chicken. Brush melted jelly over apples and chicken. Return chicken to oven and bake for 15 more minutes, or until golden and glazed.

 

Garnish with thyme sprigs; serve immediately.

 

HERBS AND MENOPAUSE SYMPTOMS

Studies spice debate over herbs and menopause symptoms

By SHARI ROAN, LOS ANGELES TIMES ( Wednesday, July 25, 2001)

 

Many women rely on black cohash, wild yam and the Chinese herb dong quai as alternative therapies to ease the symptoms of menopause, but a leading medical organization says there is little scientific evidence that these and other natural therapies actually work.

 

As many as 30 percent of women turn to acupuncture or natural products for relief of menopausal symptoms, according to the North American Menopause Society. Herbs and other botanicals, such as soy products, are heavily marketed in the United States as alternatives to hormone-replacement therapy.

 

"We know the (manufacturers') claims are manifold and sweeping," says Dr. Maida Taylor, the author of a paper released in late May by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. "Some things have merit and others do not. Doctors need to advise their patients with some foundation."

 

The report was published to help doctors counsel women who are taking alternative therapies to alleviate menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes, sleep problems and mood swings.

 

Women who prefer using natural products or seek alternatives to hormone therapy may be disappointed that the guidelines find merit in only a few botanical therapies. The biggest problem with natural products, says Taylor, is the lack of scientific evidence demonstrating they work.

 

"I think women are suspicious of hormones," says Taylor, an associate clinical professor at the University of California at San Francisco. "The alternative (products) are viewed and promoted, in many instances, as providing all of the benefits of hormones without any of the attending risks."

 

In fact, women may be risking their health by using specific botanical products. Valerian root, for example, is touted as a sleep aid but has not been proven effective for that use. The herb also has been linked to heart problems and severe withdrawal symptoms, according to the ACOG paper.

 

Another popular therapy may lead women into a potentially risky situation, says Taylor. Some women use "natural" progesterone cream products along with prescription estrogen to offset the risks of taking estrogen alone. Taking estrogen alone can increase the risk of uterine cancer, so doctors typically prescribe prescription progesterone, too.

 

But studies show that natural progesterone creams aren't effective to offset the risk of taking estrogen by itself, she says.

"Women are told that they can take this progesterone cream instead," says Taylor. "That is a very popular fad."

 

Wild yam and Mexican yam creams also are touted as helpful for menopausal symptoms. But studies show there is nothing in natural yam creams that would alleviate hot flashes or other symptoms. Some yam creams are adulterated with progesterones.

 

But "the amount absorbed is highly variable and unpredictable," Taylor says. "Therefore, it can't be recommended as a therapeutic option with a predictable outcome."

 

The ACOG report does not dismiss botanical therapies outright, however, saying that soy and black cohash, when used for hot flashes, and St. John's wort, when used for mild to moderate depression, may have limited use.

 

"It's not that botanicals are devoid of benefit," Taylor says. The benefits, though, "are at a much lower level and a narrower bandwidth."

 

Taylor notes that natural products are not subject to the same regulatory oversight in the United States as are prescription drugs. Therefore, it's possible some herb products may not contain what is stated on labels.

 

For example, the ACOG paper cites a 1998 study of 54 ginseng products that found most had little or no ginseng. Some contained large amounts of caffeine.

 

Manufacturers of herbal products are also free to make a variety of claims about their products without proving the accuracy of those claims, says Pamela Boggs, director of education for the North American Menopause Society.

 

"Unfortunately, consumers are being misled because of the different requirements of the prescription products vs. the botanicals."

 

Manufacturers of natural products can make truthful claims about the effect of a supplement on the body's structure or function, such as "promotes good sleep." They can also refer to symptoms associated with certain life stages, such as: "for hot flashes associated with menopause."

 

Natural products cannot carry disease-related claims, although the FDA in 1999 permitted manufacturers to claim that foods rich in soy could help lower the risk of heart disease.

 

 

 

HOT DIP

1 - 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese

1 - ~14 oz. can chili con carne (no beans)

Soften the cream cheese in the microwave, stir in the chili con carne, heat

for 1-2 minutes or until hot, stir well. Serve with corn or tortilla chips. This can also be made on the stove top, but heat the chili con carne first, then melt the cheese into it, but stir frequently so it won't scorch. This recipe can be doubled.

ICE CREAM COOKIE DESSERT

 

Makes 12 to 16 servings

Nuts:

1 cup walnuts, chopped

1 1/2 tablespoons margarine, melted

1 tablespoon firmly packed brown sugar

Chocolate sauce:

2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped

1 cup chocolate chips (6 ounces)

1 cup powdered sugar

2 tablespoons margarine

1 13-ounce can regular or fat-free evaporated milk

1 tablespoon vanilla

36 chocolate chip cookies (homemade using a 6-ounce package of chips or

purchased), broken into small pieces

1/2 gallon regular or low-fat vanilla ice cream, softened (divided)

 

To make nut layer: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray an 8-inch square pan with nonstick cooking spray.

 

Combine walnuts, margarine and brown sugar; place in pan. Bake for 8 minutes. Remove from oven; stir well and cool.

 

To make chocolate sauce: Place chopped chocolate, chocolate chips, powdered sugar, margarine and evaporated milk in medium saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat until chocolate is melted; turn heat to low, simmer until thickened, 5 to 10 minutes; stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Cool completely.

 

To assemble: Place a third of cookie pieces in a 10-inch spring form pan. Top with half of the ice cream and half the chocolate sauce. Mix remaining cookie pieces with walnuts, then spread half of this cookie mixture over chocolate sauce; repeat layers of ice cream, chocolate sauce (reserving 2 tablespoons) and cookies. Drizzle the reserved chocolate sauce over top layer of cookies.

Freeze until firm. To serve, let stand at room temperature 20 minutes; cut into slices.

JAMAICAN PORK WITH MELON SALSA

The jerk cooks of Jamaica may use dry rubs or wet marinades but the central ingredient in all jerk seasoning is allspice (along with fiery Scotch bonnet chilies and thyme), which grows in abundance on the sunny island.

1 cup chopped honeydew melon

1 cup chopped cantaloupe

1 tablespoon snipped fresh mint

1 tablespoon honey

4 boneless pork top loin chops, cut to 1 inch thick

4 teaspoons Jamaican jerk seasoning

Fresh mint and/or star anise (optional)

 

For salsa, in a bowl combine honeydew, cantaloupe, the 1 tablespoon mint, and the honey. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Trim fat from chops. Rub both sides of the chops with Jamaican jerk seasoning. Grill chops on the rack of an uncovered grill directly over medium heat for 8 to 12 minutes or until the chops are slightly pink in center and juices run clear. Serve salsa with chops. If desired, garnish with star anise or additional mint. Serves 4

JELL O CAKE

 

Bake a 2-layer white cake mix as directed. While still in the pan, punch holes in each layer with a fork. Dissolve 2 small Jell-O flavors in 1 cup boiling water each. Pour 1 Jell-O over each layer of cake. (Use different colors for a pretty cake) Chill overnight. Dip each layer in warm water to loosen. Turn onto a plate and frost.

 

Icing

1 small package instant vanilla pudding

1/4 cup powdered sugar

1 cup cold milk

1 8-oz. Cool Whip

 

Combine pudding, sugar and milk in bowl. Beat slowly. Fold in Cool Whip.

MAKING FRESH MOZZARELLA

 

By Pam Woolway, ucook.com contributor

 

When Louie Tedone was young, the sign above the door of the Tedone Italian deli read "Latticini Freschi." His neighbors in Brooklyn's Little Italy wouldn't have needed the translation: "fresh milk products."

 

After his father died when he was 17, Tedone got up every morning at 5:45 to make the fresh mozzarella for the store. He continued this ritual throughout the 40's while attending New York Medical College.

 

"My wife and I grew up in Brooklyn just 10 blocks apart. Our parents each owned an Italian deli in Little Italy where it is commonplace to make fresh cheese daily," says Tedone.

 

What an American may consider mozzarella is actually a bastardized version of its Italian roots. The mozzarella melted in bubbling pools atop a pizza is not latticini freschi.

 

Originally made from the milk of water buffalo, today fresh mozzarella is predominantly made from cow's milk. Fresh mozzarella is a moist and cake-like version of what Americans call mozzarella cheese. With a mouth-feel akin to cake and a texture on the tongue similar to a tender medallion of meat, fresh mozzarella is a packaged white ball suspended in brine.

 

Although fresh mozzarella can be used to cook, it is not a candidate for shredding on top of pizza. Its finest features are enjoyed sliced into a disc, lightly salted and drizzled with olive oil, crowned with a slice of tomato and chopped basil.

 

Dr. Louis Tedone, now a retired pediatrician, makes fresh mozzarella daily for his daughter's deli in Shell Beach, Calif. "It's a labor of love," he assures me with a warm squeeze on my arm.

 

Dr. Tedone does not make his own curd. "That's work! I get my curd from New York in 21-pound boxes and it's the same brand I used in my parent's deli in New York: Polly-O."

 

Curd is the combination of milk and a bacterial culture that converts the lactose sugar into lactic acid. The mixture that solidifies is the curd. (To purchase Polly-O curd, it must be ordered through a local retailer. Polly-O is owned by Kraft, which does not sell curd direct to consumers. Or, you can buy fresh mozzarella in the refrigerated section of many grocery stores.)

 

I spent a Friday afternoon with Dr. Tedone receiving a private lesson on how to make fresh mozzarella. Laughing and waving his hands, he assured me: "It's a no-brainer," in his enduring Brooklyn accent.

 

Sitting at a stool watching this nimble elf busily slicing curd over the large metal bowl, I am stunned at the simplicity of the procedure. A good home cook who can get the right ingredients can make fresh mozzarella.

 

The utensils required are: a sink, a wooden paddle, a pot of boiling water, a pot of cold water (50°F; 10°C) and about two gallons of brine water. The brine mixture is a three-pound box of kosher salt to two gallons of boiling water.

 

Tedone began with roughly five pounds of curd, which yields 10 half-pound balls of mozzarella. "It comes out better if you work in small batches," he confides.

 

There are six steps:

 

Cut the curd into 1-by-1-inch squares.

Add enough boiling water to cover generously.

Mix until lumps are smoothed out (within 2 minutes) and the texture becomes silky and elastic. The water will turn milky. The boiling water draws out the butterfat and this is what makes the mozzarella a low-fat cheese. (Wear rubber gloves to protect your skin from the hot water.)

This long rope of curd, which becomes strands of silky warm cheese, is formed into a ball by stretching the white rope of cheese over the paddle and back onto itself twice. Tuck your four fingers into the resulting ball of cheese as though you are pinching and tightening a balloon at its base, and then twist the ball off into your hand. Pinch the ends to seal.

Drop each cheese balloon in the bath of cold water so that the balls will retain their form.

Soak in the brine bath for five minutes to give the cheese a mild saltiness, or up to ten minutes for a stronger salt flavor.

Holding up two glistening balls of mozzarella, Tedone winked. "This is my calling card!"

 

As I sit on a stool nibbling a warm slice of minutes-old cheese, I can certainly understand why Europeans insist on latticini freschi.

 

MANWICHES

 

Brown 1 lb ground beef.

Add:

8 oz can tomato sauce

1 c ketchup

1 Tbsp dried minced onion

1/2 tsp minced garlic

1/4 tsp celery seed ( I actually have celery salt, so I use 1/2

tsp of that and then cut the regular salt down to @ 1/2 tsp )

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp powder

 

Simmer 15 min.

MEAT AND CHICKEN

Outdoor Feasts

1 walnut sized piece of tamarind pulp

2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped

1 tablespoon finely chopped shallots

juice and zest of 1 lime

2 tablespoons soy sauce

3 cm (1 in) piece of fresh root ginger, roughly grated

500 g (1 lb) shoulder of lamb, cubed

500 g (1 lb) boneless chicken thighs, cut into 3 cm (1 in) cubes

For the sauce

3 tablespoons plain unroasted peanuts, roughly crushed

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

2 red chilies, deseeded and roughly chopped

1 garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped

2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots

juice and zest of 1 lime

125 ml (4 fl oz) coconut milk

 

Fancy a snack while traveling through Indonesia? If you ever find yourself in this enviable situation the likely answer is going to be satay on skewers. Carefully char-grilled over an open fire, you can eat as you go, or make more of a meal of it, traditionally with cucumber pickle and square chunks of rice cake. A cold beer and some salad are ideal partners. You need to soak the skewers in cold water for about 1 hour to prevent them burning. Can't wait for that long? Wrap the exposed ends in a bit of foil, fiddly, but it does the trick.

Place the tamarind in a small cup of warm water and as the pulp becomes malleable squeeze out as much as you can. Drain through a sieve, squeezing out as much liquid from the solids as possible. Discard the pulp. Combine the tamarind liquor with the garlic, shallots, lime juice and zest, soy sauce and ginger.

Thread the meat on to soaked skewers and brush over the marinade. To make the sauce, fry the peanuts in the oil until browned.

Place the chilies, garlic and shallots in a processor and blitz.

Add to the peanuts and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring all the time to prevent sticking. Add the lime juice and zest and the coconut milk and stir well so everything is amalgamated.

Cook the skewers over a moderate heat for 20 minutes, turning frequently and basting with any remaining marinade. Serve with the sauce.

 

MEXICAN CORN BREAD

6 ounces Cornbread Mix

2 tablespoons Sugar

5 ounces Cheddar Cheese -- grated (optional)

to taste Pimento -- chopped

to taste Jalapeno Peppers -- chopped

to taste Onion -- chopped fine

3 slices Bacon -- cooked crisp, crumbled (optional)

8 ounces Corn, Cream-style

 

Mix all well and bake per instructions on back of package of corn bread mix.

MINTED CHICKEN SALAD WITH SUMMER FRUIT

Makes 4 servings

Chicken:

3/4 cup toasted wheat germ

3/4 cup finely chopped toasted almonds (see note)

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, as desired

Salt and pepper, to taste

2 egg whites

1 tablespoon water

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 4 ounces each)

Salad:

1 10-ounce package European-style salad mix

1/4 cup sliced green onions

1 cup fresh blueberries, rinsed and patted dry

3 fresh nectarines, washed and sliced

2 to 4 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves

1/2 cup prepared reduced-fat or regular raspberry vinaigrette salad dressing

2 tablespoons sliced toasted almonds (see note)

 

To make chicken: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray large shallow baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.

 

In a shallow dish combine the wheat germ, almonds, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. In a second shallow dish, beat egg whites and water with a fork until frothy. Dip chicken into egg white mixture, then into wheat germ mixture, coating completely. Dip and coat chicken again, coating thoroughly. Arrange chicken on baking pan; lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray.

 

Bake 14 to 16 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in the center.

 

While chicken is cooking, prepare salad.

 

To make salad: Gently toss salad mix with the green onions, blueberries, nectarines, mint leaves and dressing.

 

Arrange salad on serving platter; top with cooked chicken. Sprinkle with sliced almonds.

 

Note: To toast nuts, spread them in an even layer on a large baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 5 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until light golden brown. Cool completely.

 

NEW MEXICAN GREEN CHILI SAUCE

 

1 Tbsp shortening

1/2 cup chopped onion

2 Tbsp flour

1 cup chopped green chili (stems, seeds, and veins discarded)

1 cup chicken broth

1 Tbsp minced fresh garlic

Salt to taste

 

Melt the shortening and sauté the onion until translucent. Sprinkle in the flour, incorporating quickly with a wooden spatula. Cook until just barely golden brown. Add chili, garlic, and chicken broth, and simmer for 10 minutes or until the sauce begins to thicken. Add salt to taste. Serve over enchiladas, eggs, hash browns, chicken, or anything else.

NEW POTATO ROSEMARY AND GARLIC PIZZA

New potatoes, smoked mozzarella, rosemary and garlic make the flavor of this pizza unique. For a delicious variation, use sage instead of rosemary.

12 oz new potatoes

3 tbsp olive oil

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 pizza base, 10 - 12 in diameter

1 red onion, thinly sliced

5 oz smoked mozzarella, grated

2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary

salt

black pepper

2 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan, to garnish

 

1. Preheat the oven to 425°F Cook the potatoes in boiling salted water for 5 minutes. Drain well. When cool, peel and slice thinly.

2. Heat 2 tbsp of the oil in a frying pan. Add the sliced potatoes and garlic and fry for 5 - 8 minutes until tender.

3. Brush the pizza base with the remaining oil. Scatter the onion over, then arrange the potatoes on top.

4. Sprinkle over the mozzarella and rosemary. Grind over plenty of black pepper and bake for 15 - 20 minutes until crisp and golden. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the Parmesan over to serve. Serves 2 - 3

 

NINETY MINUTE BREAD

4 cups Hot Water

1/2 cup Honey

1/4 cup Vegetable Oil

4 teaspoons Salt

4 tablespoons Active Dry Yeast

5 1/2 cups Flour

5 1/2 cups Whole Wheat Flour

Using a small mixing bowl, dissolve yeast into 1/2 cup lukewarm water. In a

large bowl, mix water, honey, oil, salt and 2 1/2 cups flour. Add yeast

mixture and remainder of flour, one cup at a time, until well mixed. Knead

for 10-12 minutes. Divide into four loaves. Shape, and place into greased

loaf pans. Let rise about 30 minutes in a warm place. Bake for 30 minutes

at 400 degrees F.

NUTTY OVEN FRIED CHICKEN

1 cup biscuit mix

2 teaspoons paprika

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning

1/2 teaspoon sage

1/3 cup chopped pecans

3 pounds chicken -- cut up

1/2 cup evaporated milk

1/3 cup butter or margarine -- melted

Combine biscuit mix, seasonings, and pecans; mix well. Dip chicken in milk;

coat generously with pecan mixture.

Place in a lightly greased 13- x 9- x 2-inch baking pan. Drizzle butter over

chicken; bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until done. Yield: 4

servings.

ONE PAN BANANA NUT BREAD

 

1-1/2 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

dash salt

3/4 cup sugar

1/4 tsp baking soda

2/3 cup chopped nuts (optional)

2 mashed bananas

1/3 cup milk

1/3 cup oil

2 eggs

 

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Mix dry ingredients into un-greased 8 or 9-inch

pan. Stir with fork until well mixed. Blend in wet ingredients until smooth.

Bake for 30-35 minutes.

ONE STEP POUND CAKE

(The Washington Post)

 

2 c all-purpose flour

1 1/2 c granulated sugar

1 t grated lemon peel

1 t vanilla extract

1/2 t baking soda

1/2 t salt

3/4 c butter, softened

1/2 c sour cream

4 large eggs

 

Glaze:

1/2 c confectioner's sugar

1 T fresh lemon juice

 

Preheat oven to 325 F. Grease and flour a 9-inch fluted tube pan. In mixer

bowl beat all ingredients except confectioner's sugar and lemon juice for 3

minutes. Pour into prepared pan. Bake 55 to 60 minutes, or until cake tests

done. Cool 15 minutes. Remove cake from pan; cool. Mix confectioner's sugar

with lemon juice and drizzle over cake. Makes 12 servings.

ORANGE CHICKEN and VEGETABLE STIR FRY

 

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1 3/4 cups chicken broth

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast -- cut up

2 cloves garlic -- minced

1 cup broccoli florets

1 cup red and green bell pepper -- cut in strips

1 cup sliced onions

1/2 cup orange marmalade

4 cups hot cooked rice

 

Combine cornstarch, broth, and soy sauce; mix well.

 

Spray nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat 1 minute. Add chicken and

cook until browned, stirring often. Add garlic and vegetables and stir-fry 5

minutes. Add cornstarch mixture and marmalade. Cook until mixture boils and

thickens, stirring. Serve over hot cooked rice. Yield: 4 servings.

 

ORANGE UPSIDE DOWN CAKE

 

Topping:

 

1/4 cup butter

1 cup dark-brown sugar

2 large oranges

dried cranberries or cherries

1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated orange peel

 

Batter:

 

1 cup vegetable shortening

1 cup molasses

1 egg

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 cup buttermilk

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Melt the butter in a 9-inch cake pan. Remove the pan from the heat and cover the melted butter with the brown sugar.

 

Peel the oranges and slice them about 1/4 -inch thick. Remove the white pith in the center of each slice and remove any pits. Arrange the slices, cutting some into smaller shapes if desired, in decorative fashion on top of the sugar.

 

Put the dried cranberries or cherries in the center of each slice. Sprinkle with grated orange peel.

 

For the cake batter, cream the vegetable shortening and molasses in the bowl of an electric mixer set on medium speed. Add the egg, flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, ginger and buttermilk. Beat the ingredients 2 to 3 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally, until the batter is smooth. Spoon the batter over the fruit.

 

Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean.

 

Invert immediately onto a serving plate, but do not remove the pan.

 

Let stand 8 to 10 minutes, remove pan and let cake cool.

 

PIZZA SOUP

1 Tbs. Olive Oil

1 Medium Onion, finely chopped

1/2 cup Fresh Mushrooms, sliced

1/4 cup Green Bell Peppers, thinly sliced

1 cup Stewed Tomatoes, un-drained

1 cup Beef Stock

8 oz. Pepperoni, thinly sliced

1/2 tsp. dried Basil

1/2 tsp. dried Oregano

1 dried Bay Leaf

Salt and Pepper to Taste

1 cup Mozzarella Cheese, shredded

Either pre-heat oven broiler now, or utilize a microwave to garnish your

dinner presentation by melting the shredded Mozzarella cheese sprinkled over

the top of the finished soup. Warm olive oil in a large, deep skillet over

medium heat. Saute` onion, mushrooms, and green bell peppers until soft, but

not browned. It usually takes about 3 to 5 minutes for the onions to become

translucent. Add stewed tomatoes, beef stock, pepperoni, basil, oregano,

and bay leaf. Continue to warm until the mixture is heated through, making

sure to stir occasionally. Find the bay leaf swimming in your soup and

discard it. Add salt and pepper to taste. Ladle the soup into oven-proof

bowls and sprinkle with shredded Mozzarella cheese. Either broil in the

oven until the cheese melts and is bubbly, or microwave to produce the same

results. Serve warm. To store, refrigerate without the cheese garnish.

POUND CAKE

Cream:

1 cup butter

2 cup sugar

Add one at a time:

4 eggs

Add:

1 tsp. vanilla

1 tsp. lemon extract

Add alternately:

1 cup buttermilk or sour milk

3 cup flour

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. soda

3/4 tsp. salt

 

Pour into a buttered 10" tube pan or a loaf pan. Bake at 350 for 70 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. This recipe is VERY versatile. We made up a dozen of these in a variety of flavors for my son's Eagle Court of Honor and they were a big hit. We made chocolate, blueberry, etc. All you need to do is altar the extract. And, for the chocolate, we added 1/4 C. cocoa powder to the flour. I think orange would be good with orange peel, etc. As long as you don't add lots more liquid to change the consistency, just use your imagination.

RED AND GREEN HOT CHILI PEPPERS

 

By Ann Bokman, ucook.com contributor

Texans love their barbecue; Southerners, their biscuits and fried chicken. But few culinary traditions rival the importance of the chili pepper in the everyday lives of New Mexicans.

 

Three hundred years after Spanish settlers adopted the native ingredients of beans, corn, squash, and chili peppers, folks still threaten to put "Red or Green" (referring to the preferred variety of chili) to a state referendum.

 

For every chili-head who thinks the green is the hotter chili of the two, there's another who claims the fire is in the red. The astute avoid the highly charged question altogether, and order enchiladas "Christmas," or smothered with equal amounts of red chili sauce and green.

 

In late summer, when the year's crop of green chilies are sold, roasted, and frozen, the cultural dominance of the pepper is impossible to ignore. Dusty rigs rattle up the state highway from the southern town of Hatch, park in supermarket lots, and haul out sack after burlap sack of bright green chilies as long as a hand.

 

Customers line up before the sun has warmed the day, checking their progress by peeking over chili-filled shopping carts in Jackalope, NM. Roasters pull on thick suede mitts, hook gas tanks to charred metal roasting bins, and spark a flame.

 

Hot air shimmers, redolent with toasted chili. Burning is good. After a few minutes under a hellishly hot flame, the chilies crackle and spit seeds onto the pavement. Flecks of charred pepper skin stick to beards and hairdos. After eight minutes, the roaster kills the gas and waits for the spinning bin to slow. Then he opens the latch and scoops hot, limp chilies into cardboard cartons lined with heavy-duty garbage bags.

 

Customers heed the signs to "tip your roaster" and money and chilies are exchanged. The plastic sacks weigh roughly 20 pounds and are hot to the touch. Strapping boys and elderly men alike grab the bags by the necks and lug them to their cars.

 

Once home, they will pick up each pepper by the stem, place a hand firmly around its body, and pull the loose skin right off the flesh. (Novice skinners should use plastic gloves to protect their hands from chili oil, which can cause the skin to burn and itch.)

 

Most chili addicts can't finish the process without slitting at least one chili and stuffing it with a slice of melting cheese. Once the job is done (an experienced hand can shuck a bushel in an hour) they pat the chilies dry, pack them in Ziploc bags, and freeze them for enjoyment throughout the year.

 

Though New Mexican green chilies rank as "mild" on the chili heat index, a bushel (10 to 12 quart-sized freezer bags) may still seem like an awful lot. But not in New Mexico, where the chili pepper is a condiment, side dish, and main course. A month of eating green chili jelly, sauce, and stew is just a warm up for New Mexico's signature dish, Chilies Relleños.

 

Those who indulge in green chilies stuffed with cheese, rolled in an egg batter, and fried in a cast iron skillet will wish they'd bought two bushels this year, or maybe even three.

 

Green chili roasting can be observed all over New Mexico. In Santa Fe, the hot spots are The Furr's parking lot on Saint Michaels Rd., The Albertson's lot in DeVargas mall, and the Wild Oats parking lot on St. Francis Rd (Hwy 285). There is also chili roasting every Saturday in season at the Santa Fe Farmers' Market in the old Santa Fe railroad rail yards off Guadalupe St.

 

RED HOT CHILI SOUP

2 tsp. vegetable oil

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup red pepper

1 tsp. minced garlic

2 tsp. cumin

1 tsp. chili powder

1/8 tsp. ground red pepper

2 Tbs.. fresh cilantro

1 (133/4 or 141/4 oz. Can) chicken broth

1 ( 141/2 oz.) can stewed tomatoes

1/3 cup uncooked elbow macaroni

1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

Heat oil in saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and pepper; cover and cook

1 minute. Stir in 1 teaspoon garlic and cook 30 minutes. Add Cumin, Chili

powder and red pepper. Cook 1 minute, then stir in chicken broth and stewed

tomatoes. Cover and bring to a boil. Add macaroni, cover and simmer 5

minutes. Add kidney beans. After cooking 3 minutes more, stir in fresh cilantro.

SARA LEES POUND CAKE CLONE

 

1 stick butter

3/4 C. sugar

3 eggs

1 C. cake flour

2 T. dry powdered milk

1 T. corn syrup

juice of half a small lemon

1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. vanilla

1/4 tsp. nutmeg

1/4 tsp. mace (optional)

 

Allow butter to reach room temperature, if you can try to use unsalted butter. Cream sugar and butter together until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time and mix well. Add in flour, powdered milk, and corn syrup. Beat each in well. Add juice of half a lemon, salt, vanilla, nutmeg, and mace. Make sure everything is well blended, and pour into a greased loaf pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 45 minutes, checking for done-ness by inserting a toothpick and seeing if it comes out clean. You almost want to under-bake this.

SAVORY MELON SORBET

1 (2 lb.) cantaloupe melon, peeled, seeded, cubed

1 cup chicken stock or 2 chicken bouillon cubes dissolved in:

1 cup water

Juice of 1 lemon

1/2 cup light cream

3 to 4 basil leaves, chopped

Dash of Tabasco

Salt to taste

Pepper to taste

 

In a food processor/blender, process melon and chicken stock to a smooth purée. Mix in remaining ingredients, except melon. Pour into ice cream canister. Freeze in ice cream maker according to manufacturer's directions.

Freezer Method: Pour prepared mixture into several undivided ice trays. Place in freezer; freeze until almost firm.

In a food processor/blender, process until smooth. Return to trays; cover; freeze until firm. Serve on pieces of melon, if desired. Garnish with sprigs of rosemary, if desired. Makes 8 servings

 

SEARED SEA SCALLOPS ON SWEET PEA PUREE

1 pound medium sea scallops (about 20)

1 (10-ounce) package frozen petits pois (tiny peas), defrosted

3-1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter

 

Pat the scallops dry with paper towels and reserve.

Put the peas in a small pot with just enough water to cover. Add 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt. Cook briefly over medium-high heat until the peas are tender but still bright green, about 2 minutes.

Drain the peas, saving 6 tablespoons cooking water and reserving 1/4 cup peas for garnish. Put the peas in a blender and puree at highest speed. Add 2 tablespoons of the butter, cut into small pieces, and 5 to 6 tablespoons cooking water, so that you have a very smooth but thick puree. You will have about 1-1/4 cups puree. Keep warm.

In a large nonstick skillet, melt 1/2 tablespoon of the remaining butter. Add the scallops and cook over high heat on both sides until golden.

In the center of large plates, spread 1/3 cup pea puree into a 5-inchdiameter circle. Place the reserved peas, like pearls, around each circle. Remove the scallops from the pan with a slotted spoon. Arrange 5 scallops per dish on top of the pea puree.

Add 4 tablespoons reserved water to pan juices. Whisk in the remaining 1 tablespoon butter and remove from the heat; the sauce will thicken. Add salt to taste and pour the juices around the pea puree. Serve immediately.

SOUP BOWLS

 

1 loaf Rhodes (tm) bread dough, thawed but sill cold

1 egg, beaten

 

Cut loaf into thirds. Form each third into a ball. Place on baking sheet that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Brush with egg. Cover with sprayed plastic wrap, and let rise until double. Remove wrap and bake at 350 degrees F for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool and slice off top. Hollow out bread and fill with favorite dip or soup. For larger bowls, cut loaf in half.

SPINACH DIP

 

10 oz pkg frozen spinach, thawed and drained well

8 oz cream cheese, softened

8 oz shredded cheddar cheese

4 green onions, chopped

2 med tomatoes, finely diced

1 tsp garlic salt

pepper to taste

 

Mix all ingredients together in a glass bowl. Microwave on medium for 9-12

minutes, stirring every 3 minutes. Serve with crackers or in a hollowed out

round loaf of sourdough bread. As you remove the bread, tear it into

bite-size pieces and serve with the dip.

STEAK SANDWICH WITH CREAMY HORSERADISH

 

1 pound of flank steak

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

2 tablespoons light mayonnaise

1/4 cup nonfat yogurt

2 teaspoons of horseradish

4 hard rolls, split

4 slices beefsteak tomato

4 lettuce leaves

 

Preheat the broiler.

Sprinkle the steak with salt and pepper. Place under the broiler for about 6 minutes on each side, or until cooked to desired degree of doneness. Let stand 5 minutes, then cut across on the diagonal (grain) into very thin strips.

Meanwhile, combine the mayonnaise, yogurt and horseradish in a bowl. Toss the steak with the dressing. Make each sandwich with 1/4 of the meat, a slice of tomato and a lettuce leaf. Spoon any extra dressing on the top half of the roll before closing the sandwich. Makes 4 servings.

STRAWBERRY BANANA DESSERT

 

3 medium firm bananas, sliced

1 prepared angel-food cake, cut into 1-inch cubes

1 pint fresh strawberries, halved

1 (0.6-ounce) package sugar-free strawberry gelatin

2 cups boiling water

1 1/2 cups cold water

1 (8-ounce) carton reduced-fat whipped topping, thawed

 

Layer banana slices and cake cubes in a 9-by-13-inch dish coated with nonstick cooking spray. Place strawberries over cake and press down gently.

 

In a bowl, dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Stir in cold water. Pour over strawberries. Refrigerate for 3 hours or until set. Frost with whipped topping.

STUFFED POBLANO CHILIES

WITH ROASTED GARLIC SAUCE

 

2 heads garlic

4 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons water

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

3/4 cup white wine

1/4 cup chicken stock

2 shallots, peeled and thinly sliced

1/2 cup cream

4 fresh poblano chilies

1 cup fresh goat cheese

1/4 cup pine nuts

1/4 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme (or a pinch of dried)

2 tablespoons chopped parsley

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

 

Cut heads of garlic in half horizontally. Place in a small baking dish and drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and 2 tablespoons water. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Cover tightly with foil and bake for about 30 minutes or until tender.

 

Remove from the oven and let cool. When the garlic is cool enough to handle, squeeze the soft pulp from the heads into a small saucepan. Add the white wine, chicken stock and shallots and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.

 

Add cream. Bring to a slow boil over medium heat and stir to reduce the sauce, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and set aside. The sauce can be made hours ahead and refrigerated when cool.

 

Roast and peel the chilies. Leaving stem on, cut a small slit in the side of each chili and remove seeds. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a small sauté pan over low heat. Add pine nuts and toast to a golden brown, tossing frequently so they will not burn, about 3 minutes.

 

When they are done, add thyme, toss to mix and remove from pan. Set aside to cool.

 

Place goat cheese in a small bowl and stir until smooth. Mix in pine nuts, herbs and salt and pepper to taste. Stuff the chilies carefully with cheese mixture. Fold over the opening and place seam side down on lightly oiled baking pan. Drizzle with remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Refrigerate until 15 minutes before serving.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place chilies in oven and bake for about 15 minutes or until just warmed through.

 

Reheat garlic sauce and spoon onto warm serving plates. Place stuffed chili in the center of each plate.

THE OFFAL TRUTH

(en España)

 

By Ann Bokman, ucook.com contributor

 

I am like most Americans. In my house, "mystery meat" was meatloaf, and not very mysterious at that. I had heard that the French ate all manner of offal with relish. But I was shocked when, on my first trip to Spain, I not only ate parts of the animal I couldn't pronounce; I enjoyed them.

 

I'm fortunate I did. Unless you want to order steak at every meal, it's darn hard to avoid the lesser-known delicacies. If "callos" (tripe) were more elegant, it would certainly be known as the national dish. While every cook has his own recipe, callos is most often prepared by simmering garbanzo beans and tripe (stomach lining) in an aromatic sauce of sun-drenched tomatoes and local olive oil.

 

Though it takes time to become accustomed to the texture (chewy), the Spanish sop it up with a rustic loaf until they see the shining plate beneath. Unless you are native to the language, it is unlikely you will always know what you are eating. But you may just enjoy it.

 

I still savor the afternoon I stumbled into a small café and pointed to the dish my neighbor was obviously enjoying. After the first bite, I understood why. The stew was crammed with the day's catch, the sweet flavors of which were balanced by "morcilla," a homemade sausage made of blood, rice, and spices.

 

When I requested the bill, the waiter waived his hand in dismissal, announcing that he had served me the leftovers from his pensioners' lunch.

 

For the adventurous, I recommend snacking on "orejas" (pig's ears) or "cuello del rabo," a dainty joint of meat from the steer's spine. An evening tapa (snack) of "pulpo" (octopus), olive oil pooling in its suckers, is an experience not to be missed. If you plan to explore the north coast of Spain, I highly recommend a stop in the seaside city of San Sebastian ("Donastia" in the Basque language).

 

Ask the locals for directions to the city's market and park yourself in front of any one of the numerous butcher stands. I spent an entire morning watching, agog, as a butcher deftly slivered an entire calf's liver. Beef tongues swung from the rafters; pig knuckles pressed against the glass of the display case.

 

Tripe in tomato sauce was vacuum-packed and stacked in bricks for shoppers with traditional tastes and modern schedules. If you like to experiment, but prefer to do so in your own kitchen, pay a visit to a good local butcher. Though his larder will likely be more limited than that of his Spanish counterpoint, most delicacies can be procured with advance notice.

 

If you are a knuckle novice, buy a whole chicken, turkey, or duck, serve the breasts and thighs, and use the neck and giblets to make a stock. And remember the guiding principle of the courageous: what you don't know won't hurt you.

 

Buen Provecho! (Enjoy your meal!)

TIPS FOR CAMPERS

(From a reader in England)

*wrap large baking potatoes in foil and bury into the coals of the fire for

about 15 minutes (depending on how large the potatoes are), top with warm baked beans (something I never would have dreamed of doing, but have picked up here in England - it's surprisingly good!) and/or cheese, steak sauce, or

coleslaw.

* for dessert, get a large can of peach halves. Take 2 peach halves and

place a large marshmallow or 2 between the halves, wrap in foil and bake for

8 minutes or so (until marshmallow has melted). These are *really* delicious

and I suggest you make more than one per person.

* if you catch some fish, you can do an easy fish baking packet. Lay the

fish on a large sheet of aluminum foil, score the fish (make tiny slashes in

the flesh) and stuff the cavity where you gutted it, along with the scored

areas, with fresh herbs (parsley, dill, anything that suits the flavor of

the fish) and slices of lemon. In addition (and optionally), you can make a

bed of onions, carrots and other vegetables on top of the aluminum foil for

the fish to sit on, add about 2 cups of white wine, and seal up the foil at

all ends, like a huge parcel. Make sure you 'double-up' the foil so that it

doesn't rip. Cook this in the fire for 20 minutes or so, depending on the size

of the fish.

TOMATO FLORENTINE SOUP OR SAUCE WITH DILL

 

1 can (14 oz. can) Hunt's diced tomatoes

1/4 c finely minced onion

1-2 tsp. butter

1/3 c heavy cream

1 1/2 oz. cream cheese

1 rounded tsp. dill weed

1 tablespoon finely chopped spinach (used canned)

1/4 tsp. minced garlic (used dried)

 

Soften garlic in hot water for few minutes. Saute` onion in butter (adding bit of water so onion cooks and is soft). Meanwhile whir the spinach in a food processor or blender until it is mushy - you want it to be in tiny, tiny pieces. Add the dill weed, spinach and can of tomatoes - juice and all to the onion/garlic mixture. Simmer slowly until blended and onion and garlic are soft. Just before done (and this takes just a few minutes) stir in the cream cheese and stir until it is dissolved. Then add the cream and simmer for a few minutes.

 

UPSIDE DOWN CAKE

FROM GOOD OL' DAYS

STAMFORD (CONN.) ADVOCATE, (Published: Wednesday, July 25, 2001)

 

When was the last time you baked an upside-down cake? They were all the rage a few decades ago.

 

Basically, it is prepared by placing melted butter and sugar in a baking pan, arranging fruit on top of the sugar in a decorative fashion, then adding cake batter. Once baked and inverted, the cake shows its lovely fruit topping.

 

In the old days, pineapple upside-down cake was the rage. The top of the cake glistened with melted brown sugar, covered with canned pineapple rings, their centers stuffed with maraschino cherries. It was quite a show and remarkably sweet to the tooth. But any fruit will do.

 

You still can bake upside-down cake in a cast-iron pan (or any other kind of skillet), but most people make them in a regular cake pan. Smaller versions might be prepared in muffin tins, custard cups or ramekin molds. Upside-down cake is best served warm, accompanied by ice cream or whipped cream.

 

SHALOM FROM SPIKE & JAMIE



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