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

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Recipes from Spike & Jamie

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Contents Disk 465

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).


A GREAT COOKING STRATEGY
ALMOST SAMOAS
ASIAN GLAZED CHICKEN & STIR-FRY VEGETABLES
BITTER CHOCOLATE-ALMOND BROWNIES
BROWN SUGAR MUFFINS
BROWNIES, LOW FAT
BUTTERSCOTCH SAUCE
CAPONATA DI MELANZANE
CASHEW CHICKEN FOR TWO
CHERRY-VANILLA ICE CREAM BOMBE
CHICKEN PARMESAN
CHILI-DOG CUPCAKES
CHILLED SOUPS
COCKTAILS
CORN DOG SQUARES
CURRIED BEAN SALAD
CURRIED TURKEY BURGERS
DULCE DE LECHE SAUCE
EGG SALAD STACKS
FETTUCCINE WITH SALMON AND ASPARAGUS
FISH FILLETS AU GRATIN
FIZZY PEACHARITA
FLOUNDER AL MOJO DE AJO
FRENCH BANANA CAKE
FRUIT COCKTAIL CAKE
GRAHAM CRACKER CRUMB CAKE
GREEN ONION TART
GRILLED MAHI MAHI
GRILLED SIRLOIN WITH VIDALIA ONION
INDIAN CORN PUDDING
LATINO BARBECUE BURGERS
LAZY WIFE PICKLES
LENTIL SALAD
LONDON BROIL MARINATED IN GOOD STUFF
MACARONI SALAD
MALAGA WHITE ALMOND GAZPACHO
MANGO CUCUMBER SALSA
MOCHA MOUSSE
MOROCCAN CHICKEN TAGINE
MUSSEL BROSE
OLIVE OIL BREAD DIP
PEASE PUDDING
PEPPERS STUFFED WITH CORN AND CRAB MEAT
PESHE EN SALTSA
PLATE-COOKED FISH PAILLARD WITH GINGER
PRALINES
PURPLE POTATO, SUGAR SNAP PEA AND MINT SALAD
QUICK PRALINE BARS
RANCH PASTA SALAD
RASPBERRY GRANITA
ROSE BEADS
RUSSIAN STYLE BEET STEW
SCALLOPED CORN
SEARED ROSEMARY SCALLOPS
SHORT RIBS
SPANISH RICE
SPRING RICE SALAD
STRAWBERRY MACAROONS
STRAWBERRY-RHUBARB DESSERT
STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE
STROGANOFF MEATBALLS
SZECHUAN EGGPLANT
TABBOULEH SALAD
TEXAS CAVIAR
TWENTY-MINUTE BLUEBERRY TART
UKRAINIAN MEATLESS BORSCHT
WHISTLE STOP'S BANANA BREAD
WHISTLE STOP'S CHOCOLATE CUSTARD
WISH-INSPIRED CARROT CAKE
ZUCCHINI SQUASH CASSEROLE



A GREAT COOKING STRATEGY

“Mise en place” is a French term that means “set in place.” As a culinary term, it means having all the slicing and dicing done before any kitchen fires get started. You cook better if everything is mise en place before you start the actual cooking, because you can cook tings for their correct times without worrying about whether you can chop ingredient B fast enough to add to the pan where ingredient A needs 5 extra minutes of cooking time, not 10.

Wash everything. Cut things up to the proper size. Measure out the herbs, spices, flour, and other dry goods into small bowls. Measure the liquids into jugs. Place everything in the order of use according to the recipe. Now it is time to get out the pans and start cooking.

ALMOST SAMOAS

6 tbsp butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
4 cups coconut, toasted
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

In a 2 quart saucepan over medium-low heat, combine butter, sugar and corn syrup. Heat to a full boil, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Boil 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Slowly pour in condensed milk, stirring constantly. Continue cooking over low heat until candy thermometer reaches 220-228 degrees.

Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Beat until creamy.  Immediately stir in toasted coconut and mix well. Spoon mixture by teaspoonfuls into circular mounds onto buttered waxed paper. Flatten slightly and with the end of a wooden spoon. Poke a small round hold into the center of each cookie. Cool completely.  Melt chocolate chips and drizzle thinly in stripes over the cookies and let chocolate harden at room temperature.  Store in an airtight container.  

ASIAN GLAZED CHICKEN & STIR-FRY VEGETABLES

3 tbsp. cornstarch
1 can (14 oz.) chicken broth (1 3/4 cups)
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup cider vinegar
2 tbsp. soy sauce
1/8 tsp. crushed red pepper
4 boneless chicken breast halves
1 cup thinly sliced carrots
1 can (8 oz.) sliced water chestnuts, drained
2 cups snow peas
4 cups cooked white OR brown rice, cooked without salt

Mix cornstarch, broth, honey, vinegar, soy and pepper.

Cook chicken in nonstick skillet until browned. Add cornstarch mixture, carrots and water chestnuts. Cook and stir until mixture boils and thickens. Cover and cook over low heat 5 min. or until done. Stir in peas. Serve with rice. Serves 4.

Note: For extra flavorful rice, cook rice in chicken broth instead of water. No need to add salt or butter.

BITTER CHOCOLATE-ALMOND BROWNIES
David Frakes, chef, Beringer Vineyards

1 1/2 cup (3 sticks) unsalted butter
7 ounces almond paste
3/4 cup sugar
4 eggs
1 cup cocoa powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 13-by-9-by-2-inch baking pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper.

Beat together the butter, almond paste and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Add the eggs two at a time. Add the cocoa powder. When completely blended, pour in the baking pan and bake for about 25 minutes until a knife stuck in the center comes out clean.
Serves 2 or more. Makes about a dozen 3-by-3-inch squares.

BROWN SUGAR MUFFINS

  1   cup  quick-cooking oats
 1/2 cup  milk
 3/4 cup  packed brown sugar
 1/4 cup  butter -- melted
  1   egg
  1   cup  all-purpose flour
 1/2 cup  chopped walnuts
  2   teaspoons  baking powder

Heat oven to 400F. Grease 12 medium muffin cups, 2 1/2 × 1 1/4 inches, or line with paper baking cups.

Mix oats, milk and brown sugar in large bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Add butter and egg; blend well. Stir in remaining ingredients just until moistened.

Fill muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake 15 or 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  Yield: 12 servings.

BROWNIES, LOW FAT

1/4 cup cocoa powder
1.. 4-ounce jar prune baby food
3 egg whites
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup self-rising flour
1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350F.  Spray an 8x8-inch baking pan with non-stick vegetable spray.

In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients; beat until well blended. Bake for 30 minutes or until top springs back when lightly touched.  Cool in pan on a wire rack.  Cut into squares.  (Yield: 16 brownies)

BUTTERSCOTCH SAUCE

8 tablespoons unsalted butter
2/3 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar
2/3 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons water
3/4 cup light corn syrup
3/4 cups heavy cream
2 teaspoons vanilla
 
In a medium saucepan, melt the butter. Stir in the two sugars, the salt, water, and corn syrup. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugars. Let the mixture boil for 5 minutes, stirring often. You will see big slow bubbles as it boils. Remove from heat. Carefully whisk in the cream and vanilla, being careful, if the sauce sputters. let sauce cool to warm before serving. Will keep in the refrigerator in a glass jar for up to two weeks,

CAPONATA DI MELANZANE

     1 cup water
     1/2 cup vinegar
     2-3 stalks celery, chopped (about 1 cup)
     1 1/2 tablespoons capers
     1 large eggplant (about 11/2 pounds)
     Coarse salt
     Oil for deep frying, plus 3-4 tablespoons for cooking onion
     1 yellow onion, chopped
     1 (15-ounce) can tomatoes, squeezed with hands to break them up
     Red chili flakes, to taste
     Salt, to taste
     2 teaspoons sugar, or to taste
     Sprinkle of red wine vinegar
     Pepper, to taste

       In small saucepan, bring water and vinegar to boil. Add celery and boil 5 minutes, or until celery begins to soften. Drain, then add capers to celery. Set aside.

       Wash eggplant and pat dry. Trim stem and bottom (leave skin on), then slice eggplant into rounds about 1-inch thick. Cut slices into 1-inch pieces. Lay on a clean lint-free towel, sprinkle with coarse salt and let sit for 20-30 minutes. Squeeze eggplant in the towel to wring out juices that have been drawn out by the salt. Do not rinse.

       Heat about 1 inch of oil to 350 degrees. Add eggplant in batches to hot oil and deep-fry until golden brown on all sides. As they brown, remove and drain well on paper towels to absorb some of the oil. Set aside. Heat 3-4 tablespoons oil in a sauté pan large enough to accommodate all the ingredients. Add onion and cook gently, stirring occasionally, for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown and caramelized. Add tomatoes, red chili flakes and salt, to taste. Cook on low heat for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. (Mixture should still be juicy.) Add celery and capers, then add eggplant. Cook gently for 5 minutes more. Remove from heat and add sugar. Add a sprinkle of red wine vinegar and salt and pepper. Stir and taste; adjust seasonings if needed, then transfer to a serving bowl. Serve
at room temperature. (Caponata will keep well in a covered jar in the refrigerator for 5-6 days.) Makes about 3 1/2 cups.  Source: Soprano Ristorante Italiano

CASHEW CHICKEN FOR TWO

  6 ounces  chicken breasts -- cut into 1/2" slices
  1 teaspoon  cornstarch
  1 teaspoon  soy sauce -- (low sodium)
1 1/2 dashes  garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon  vegetable oil
  2 green onions -- chopped
2/3 cup  mushrooms -- sliced
1/3 large  carrot -- julienned
1/3 cup  celery -- sliced
1/3 small  bell pepper -- (red or green)
  2  ounces  water chestnuts, canned -- drained
1/2 cup  bean sprouts -- canned, drained
  1 cup  rice, cooked -- hot
2 2/3 tablespoons  cashews, dry-roasted

Cut chicken in 1/2 inch slices, and place chicken in large resealable plastic food storage bag. Combine cornstarch, soy sauce and garlic powder in small bowl and whisk until well blended. Pour over chicken pieces. Seal bag and toss to coat.  Marinate in refrigerator 1 hour. Drain chicken, then discard marinade.

Heat oil in wok or small nonstick skillet until hot. Add onions & carrots, then stir-fry 1  minute. Add  chicken and stir-fry 3 minutes or until browned. Add mushrooms, celery, pepper, bean sprouts and water chestnuts, and stir-fry 3 minutes or until  vegetables are crisp-tender and chicken is no  longer pink in center.

Serve chicken and vegetables over rice. Top each serving evenly  with cashews. Serve immediately.

Source:  "Real Food for Real People presents:  Recipes for Two"
Copyright:  "(c)2003, Kaylin White/Real Food for Real People"

CHERRY-VANILLA ICE CREAM BOMBE

3 pints vanilla ice cream, slightly softened
1 jar (6 ounces) Maraschino cherries
4 egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cups fine crumbs of cream-filled chocolate sandwich cookies (10 cookies)
1 jar (11.75 ounces) hot fudge topping

Line 10-cup metal or glass bowl (about 8 inches wide) with aluminum foil, extending 2 inches over sides. Spread ice cream in 1-inch-thick layer over inside of bowl, leaving about 6-inch hollow in center. Freeze about 1 hour.

Drain cherries, reserving 3 tablespoons juice. Coarsely chop cherries; set aside. In large metal bowl, whisk yolks, sugar, nutmeg and cherry juice. Place over large saucepan of simmering water. With electric mixer, beat yolk mixture until thick and temperature is 140F; then cook, beating, for another 3 minutes. Remove from heat; let cool.

In bowl, beat heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Gently fold into yolk mixture; then fold in chopped cherries. Spoon into center of ice cream. Freeze overnight.

Unmold bombe onto chilled platter. Coat with cookie crumbs. Return to freezer. Warm fudge topping as directed. Let cool to 90F. Spread over bombe. Freeze 1 hour.   Yield: 16 servings

CHICKEN PARMESAN
From The Spice Cook Book, by Day and Stuckey Serves 4

2 1/2 pounds chicken (whole, cut into quarters, or cut-up pieces)
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp crumbled rosemary leaves
1/4 tsp instant minced garlic
~^~^~^~^~
2 to 3 tbsp olive oil (or shortening)
1/2 cup white wine, chicken stock, or water
1 tbsp flour
2 tbsp water
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Cut chicken into quarters (or use the cut-up chicken pieces- boneless, skinless are okay), wash, and wipe dry with paper towels. Combine the next four ingredients and rub onto the surface of all sides of the chicken pieces. Heat oil
In a 10- or 12-inch skillet. Add chicken and cook over moderate heat, turning
Occasionally, until brown on all sides, about 25 minutes (less time for cut-up pieces than for quarters). Add wine, stock, or water.

Cover and simmer 30 minutes, or until chicken is tender. Transfer chicken to a baking dish. Blend flour with water and stir into the pan drippings. Mix well and spoon over chicken. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake in a preheated moderate oven (350 deg. F.) for 10 minutes. Serve hot, with the sauce.

CHILI-DOG CUPCAKES

  1 cup  flour
  1 cup  cornmeal
  3 tablespoons  sugar
  1 tablespoon  baking powder
  2 eggs -- beaten
  1 cup  milk
1/4 cup  vegetable oil
  3 large  hot dogs, beef -- sliced
  1 cup  chili

Grease the bottom and sides of 12 cupcake sections in a cupcake baking pan, then set aside.  In a medium mixing bowl, stir together flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder & salt.  Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and set aside.  In another bowl, combine eggs, milk and cooking oil.  Add egg mixture all at once to dry ingredients, then stir until moistened.  Spoon 2 Tbsp. batter into the bottom of each section of the prepared cupcake pan.  Divide hotdog slices and chili between the 12 sections, then fill to 2/3 full with remaining batter.  Bake at 425 degrees F, for 20 - 25  minutes.  Serve hot or cold, as desired.  Refrigerate any leftovers. Copyright:  "(c) 2001, Kaylin White/Real Food for Real People"

CHILLED SOUPS

Chilled Pea Soup

4 cups water
1 Tbsp. kosher salt, plus extra for seasoning
2/3 cup (about 2 pounds) English peas, shelled
Freshly ground pepper

Combine the water and 1 tablespoon of salt in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the peas and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until tender. Immediately transfer to an ice water bath with a slotted spoon to stop the cooking.

Drain the peas and transfer to a food processor. Purée, adding a small amount of water to create a soupy texture. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour until chilled.

Chilled Carrot Soup

2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1/2 small onion, chopped
2 young, sweet carrots, chopped
2 cups chicken stock
Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper

Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the onion and carrots and cook for about 10 minutes over low heat until the onions are transparent. Add the stock and bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook on a gentle simmer for 20 minutes. Let cool. Transfer to a blender and purée with a cloth covering the vent hole in the lid. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour until chilled. (If too thick, add a little water.)

Chilled Corn Soup

2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1/2 small onion, chopped
1 ear fresh corn, kernels removed
2 cups chicken stock
Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper

Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the onion and corn and cook for about 10 minutes over low heat until the onions are transparent. Add the stock and bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook on a gentle simmer for 20 minutes. Let cool. Transfer to a blender and purée with a cloth covering the vent hole in the lid. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour until chilled. (If too thick, add a little water.)

Serve a single soup in demitasse cups or serve as part of a trio of soups all served in small decorative shot or vodka glasses. Each soup makes 2 cups.

COCKTAILS

Golden Martini
A sparkling twist on the classic.

5 ounces Vodka
1 ounce Goldschlager
1 ounce dry vermouth
2 olives stuffed with almonds or 2 cinnamon sticks for garnish

Goldschlager is a cinnamon schnapps liqueur with flakes of gold leaf in it. The gold is harmless to drink and adds an extra special touch.
Chill two martini glasses by filling with water and ice, or by placing in the freezer. Combine the vodka, Goldschlager, and vermouth in a cocktail shaker. Shake with cracked ice and strain into the glasses. Garnish with an olive stuffed with almond, or lay a cinnamon stick across the lip of each martini glass. If you prefer a dryer
martini, simply swirl the vermouth in the glass, then pour it out.

Cinnamon Toast
Makes one drink

1 ounce Bailey's Irish Cream
1 ounce Goldschlager (see above)
1 ounce Kahlua
Sprinkle of grated cinnamon

This is a layered drink. Layering is easily done by starting with the heaviest liquid (in this case the Kahlua first, then the Bailey's, then the Goldschlager) and pouring each ingredient over an inverted spoon into the liqueur glass to prevent mixing. Sprinkle some cinnamon on top.

You can make a dramatic finishing touch by igniting it with a match and sprinkling a bit more cinnamon for sparks. The alcohol must be warm to get a nice flame effect. Be sure the flame is out before sipping.

Tribeca Cocktail
(recipe can be found in 'B. Smith's Entertaining and Cooking for Friends')

3 ounces Champagne
3 ounces cranberry juice
1 ounce Absolut Citron
Splash of Chambord (optional)
Lemon wedge for garnish

Place ice in a large red wine glass. Pour in a shot of Absolut Citron. Slowly pour in 3 ounces of Champagne until half the glass is filled. Top off with 3 ounces of cranberry juice and a splash of Chambord, if desired. Garnish with a wedge of fresh lemon.

CORN DOG SQUARES

   2 cups celery, thinly sliced                                    
    2 tablespoons butter or margarine                              
    1 1/2 cups green onions, sliced                                 
    1 1/2 pounds hot dogs, cut in thirds and quartered lengthwise   
    1 1/2 cups milk                                                
    2 eggs beaten                                                  
    2 teaspoons sage, ground                                        
    1/4 teaspoon black pepper                                      
    8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (2 cups)                
    1 15-ounce package corn bread and muffin mix                   

Preheat oven to 400F. Butter a 3-quart oblong baking dish. In a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat, sauté celery in butter or margarine for 5 minutes. Add green onions and sauté 5 minutes longer. Transfer to a medium bowl.

In same skillet, sauté frankfurters for 5 minutes or until lightly browned and beginning to curl. Transfer to bowl with vegetables; mix thoroughly.

In a large bowl, mix milk, eggs, sage and pepper. Reserve 1 cup of the frankfurter mixture; stir remainder into milk mixture with 1 1/2 cups of the cheese. Stir in cornbread mix. Pour into baking dish. Top with reserved frankfurter mixture and remaining 1/2 cup cheese.

Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown. Cut into squares.  Yield: 12 squares

CURRIED BEAN SALAD

  1  pound  Great Northern Beans -- dry
  4  Green Onions, whole -- sliced
1/2 cup  Carrots -- grated
1/2 cup  Radishes -- sliced

                      Dressing:
1/2  cup  Vegetable Oil
1/4  cup  Cider Vinegar
  2   tablespoons  Chutney -- (Mango)
  1   teaspoon  Curry Powder
1/2  teaspoon  Salt
1/4  teaspoon  Black Pepper -- freshly ground

Place beans in a Dutch oven; add water to cover by 2 inches.  Bring to a boil; boil for 2 min.  Remove from the heat; cover and let stand for 1 hour.  Drain and discard liquid.  Return beans to pan; add water to cover by 2 inches.  Bring to a boil; cover and simmer for 45 min. or until beans are tender.  Drain and discard liquid.  Rinse well and place beans in a large bowl; add onions, carrots and radishes.  In another bowl, mix dressing ingredients.  Pour over bean mixture and toss gently.  Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight, before serving.

CURRIED TURKEY BURGERS
 
1 lb ground turkey
2 Tbsp curry powder
1/4 cup grated onion
2 cloves minced garlic
1/2 tsp salt
couple shakes of Worcestershire (1-2 Tbsp)
handful chopped cilantro
 
Combine all ingredients by hand and form into patties. Grill for 6-7 minutes on high heat or broil for longer (10-12 min.) on high. Serve on your favorite bun with your favorite garnishes.

DULCE DE LECHE SAUCE
Pour it over cheesecake, pound cake or ice cream.

     1 cup whipping cream
     1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
     1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk

Combine whipping cream and brown sugar in a heavy medium saucepan. Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves.

Boil until mixture is reduced to 1 cup, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Stir in sweetened condensed milk.

The sauce can be made in advance. Cover and chill. Before serving, rewarm over medium-low heat just until pourable.

EGG SALAD STACKS

  4       hard-cooked eggs -- chopped
  2       medium  green onions -- sliced
1/4      cup  carrot -- shredded
  2       tablespoons  mayonnaise or salad dressing
  2       tablespoons  plain low-fat yogurt
1/4      teaspoon  curry powder
1/8      teaspoon  salt
           Dash  pepper
  4       romaine leaves
  2       English muffins -- split and toasted OR 2 slices  bread
  4       rings  yellow or green bell pepper
  2       tablespoons  alfalfa sprouts

Mix eggs, onions, carrot, mayonnaise, yogurt, curry powder, salt and pepper. Place 1 romaine leaf on each muffin half. Top with egg mixture, bell pepper rings and alfalfa sprouts.

FETTUCCINE WITH SALMON AND ASPARAGUS

1 lb. fresh fettuccine, cooked al dente
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1/2 lb. fresh salmon, cut into small strips
2 T. olive oil
1 handful asparagus, steamed until crisp-tender and cut into 1" lengths
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Fresh Italian basil leaves

Cook fettuccine and toss with extra virgin olive oil; set aside.

Cook salmon in oil until just barely done. Add to fettuccine and add cooked asparagus. Add butter to pan where salmon was cooked and gently melt over medium-low heat. Whisk in lemon juice and season to taste. Pour over pasta mixture and toss well.

Place in a pasta serving dish and garnish with basil. Serve hot. Serves 4-6.

FISH FILLETS AU GRATIN

1 cup (4 oz.) shredded American Cheese
1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. minced parsley
1/2 tsp. onion salt
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 lbs. fish fillets

Preheat oven to 400 deg. F.  In small bowl combine all ingredients except fish.  Place fish on individual squares of greased foil.  Spoon crumb mixture over fish.   Seal securely and bake at 400º for 30-35 minutes or until fish flakes easily.
Serves 6.

To Grill: Place packets 3-4 inches from hot coals.  Cook 20-25 minutes.

FIZZY PEACHARITA

     2 cups peeled and sliced peaches
     1/2 cup fresh squeezed lime juice, strained
     4 ounces (1/2 cup) quality tequila, preferably Heradura
     1/4 cup (2 ounces) Grand Marnier
     1/2 cup sugar
     1 (12-ounce) can lemon-lime soda, such as 7-Up or Sprite
     Hand-shaved ice or crushed ice

Place peaches, lime juice, tequila, Grand Marnier and sugar in a blender and purée until smooth. Pour mixture into a pitcher and mix with soda. Fill glasses with shaved ice and add peach cocktail mixture. Makes 6 servings.
Source: Ross Burtwell/Cotton Gin Restaurant and Lodging


FLOUNDER AL MOJO DE AJO

1 stick butter, or as needed (divided use)
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 small green bell pepper, cut into thin strips
10-12 large cloves garlic, thinly sliced
4 (1/2-inch thick) flounder fillets or other flatfish (use 6 ounces each for lunch and
8 ounces each for dinner)
Fish seasoning (such as Chef Paul Prudhomme's Seafood Magic)
Flour, for dusting flounder fillets
Salt (optional)

Heat large (12-inch) sauté pan over moderate heat, add 3-4 tablespoons butter and heat until butter sizzles. Add onion and green pepper; cook, stirring frequently, for 4-5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and add garlic and a little more butter if needed. Continue cooking, stirring frequently, until garlic has turned golden brown. Be careful not to let garlic burn, or it will get bitter.
Transfer vegetables to bowl and set aside.

Wash fish fillets and pat dry with paper towels. Season to taste with fish seasoning. Spread flour on a plate. Return the pan to medium heat, add the remaining butter, and as it heats, dredge both sides of the fillets in flour, shake to remove excess and add fillets (in batches) to the pan. Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, until fish is nicely browned and cooked through. Timing will depend on the thickness of the fillets.

Remove from pan and transfer to a warm serving platter. Reheat vegetables in the pan briefly, if needed, then spoon over the fish. Season to taste with salt.

Serve with white rice and borracho beans, if desired. Makes 4 servings.
Source: Casarita's

FRENCH BANANA CAKE

2/3 cup water
1 tbsp vinegar
1 tsp baking soda
1 pkg white cake mix
2 eggs
1 1/4 cups very ripe bananas; mashed
2/3 cup walnuts; chopped

Don't be afraid to use almost black bananas (ripeness improves the flavor), and refrigerate cake for 24 hours before serving for the best flavor.

Mix water, vinegar and soda. Combine with cake mix and eggs. Stir until moistened. Scrape bowl with spatula. Add mashed bananas. Beat with electric mixer 3 minutes at medium speed (300 strokes by hand). Blend in nuts. Pour into greased and floured 9x13" pan. Bake at 350~ for 35 minutes (until toothpick comes out clean).

FRUIT COCKTAIL CAKE

2 cups flour
1-1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup coconut
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp Salt
1 can fruit cocktail (15 oz not drained)
2 tsp vanilla
2 eggs

Mix all well. Pour in greased 9x13 inch pan. On top of cake before putting in oven sprinkle 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup coconut. Bake 350F for 45 minutes. Prepare topping below while cake is baking. Spread hot topping over cake as soon as cake is out of oven.

Topping for Fruit Cocktail Cake:
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup evaporated milk
1 stick margarine
One 3-1/2 oz can coconut
1-1/2 cups pecans, chopped

Boil 3 minutes, sugar, carnation milk  and margarine. Add pecans and coconut. Spread evenly on cake when it's done. Put back in oven for 2 minutes. Eat while warm. Extra good with vanilla ice cream.

GRAHAM CRACKER CRUMB CAKE

1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup margarine
2/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup brown sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup chopped walnuts

Stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Mix with crumbs, set aside.  In large bowl, cream butter and sugars.   Beat in eggs one at a  time.  Add vanilla and beat until fluffy.

Add flour mixture alternately with buttermilk, beating just to blend.  Stir in walnuts.  Spread in greased 9 " square baking pan.  Bake at 350 Deg. F. for 40 minutes. 

GREEN ONION TART

For the pastry shell (pate brisee):

1 1/2 cups all-purpose (plain) unbleached flour
1/2 tsp salt
Pinch hot paprika or cayenne pepper, to taste
2/3 cup unsalted butter, thoroughly chilled (vegans use vegetable shortening)
3 T. lard or suet, thoroughly chilled (vegans substitute vegetable shortening)
1/4 cup ice water

1 egg white

Place your rolling pin, processor work bowl and processor blade in the freezer. Cut shortening into small pieces and chill.

When well chilled, remove work bowl and steel blade from the freezer and assemble food processor. Blend flour, salt and paprika in food processor. While the processor is running, drop cold shortening into the flour and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Drizzle in the water until the dough forms a ball.

Wash your hands in the iciest water you can stand. Remove the pastry from the processor and pat it into a round disk. Chill briefly.

Preheat the oven to 400 F.

Sprinkle flour on the work surface and over the rolling pin. Roll the dough out to a circle about 14” in diameter. Left it gently with the rolling pin and lay it over a 9” tart pan (flan ring), preferably with fluted sides and a false bottom. Chill your hands again and press the dough into the pan. Bake 10 minutes, or until the edges start to pull away from the pan. Remove from the oven and paint with the egg white. Return to the oven for another 5 minutes. Remove and set on a wire rack to cool completely. Reduce oven to 375 F.

For the filling:

1 lb. scallions (green onions, spring onions), white and green parts, sliced thinly
3 Tbsp butter or vegetable margarine
1 Tbsp flour
6 oz. crumbled tofu
2 pinches cayenne
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

4 large eggs (or vegan egg substitute)
1 1/4 cups heavy cream (or soy or rice milk + 1 Tbsp olive oil)
A few gratings nutmeg

Cook the onions in the butter or margarine until they caramelize (turn very dark brown--but take care not to burn them. Remove to a bowl and toss with the flour to coat. Add tofu, cayenne, salt and pepper and toss. Allow to cool.

Thoroughly beat eggs and cream or substitutes and whisk in the nutmeg.

Put the onion mixture into the cool tart shell. Pour on the liquid mixture. Bake 25-30 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center of the filling comes out clean and the top starts to brown.

Allow to cool somewhat before serving warm. You may also serve the tart cold, so it can be made a day ahead or carried on a picnic. Serves 4-6. Variation: Substitute mushrooms for part or all of the scallions for a different treat.

GRILLED MAHI MAHI

6 - 8 Mahi-Mahi steaks
Fresh rosemary sprigs
1 pint fresh blueberries
1 pint fresh raspberries
1 pint fresh strawberries, chopped
1 Tbsp. shallots, chopped
1/3 cup white wine vinegar
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup white wine

Place fresh rosemary on mahi-mahi steaks and grill over medium-high heat for 5 to 8 minutes per side or until firm-tender. Combine remaining ingredients and serve over fish.

GRILLED SIRLOIN WITH VIDALIA ONION
From Chef Matthew Whyles, Queen Mary 2

1 Vidalia onion
Salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil as needed
8-ounce prime beef sirloin
1 large, 1-inch-thick slice of Tuscan bread, cut into a square
2 cups torn spinach leaves
1 clove garlic, slivered
1/4 cup fresh blanched peas or frozen peas
1 ounce country ham, julienned
3 tablespoons Roquefort cream (recipe follows)

For garnish: 1 scallion sliced into very fine julienne and put in ice water to curl

Ahead of time, roast Vidalia onion with salt and pepper and a little olive oil. One onion will be enough for up to 6 servings of steak, allowing 2 or 3 slices per serving.

Season meat with salt and pepper and grill, indoors or outdoors, to desired temperature for rare or medium (check with meat thermometer for correct internal temperature for doneness). You can also pan-sear the meat on the stove top and put it under the broiler, for about 7 minutes for a medium-rare steak. Toast Tuscan bread square on the grill alongside the meat or in a toaster.

Blanch spinach in boiling water for about 1 minute. Remove and drain well. Caramelize slivered garlic in a little oil over medium-high heat; add to spinach and toss. Mix peas and ham with Roquefort cream.

To serve: Lay spinach in the center of a large dinner plate. Place the toasted bread on the spinach. Place the Roquefort cream with the peas and the ham on the toast. Slice the meat into three pieces and place on the top of the toast. Garnish with curled scallion. Makes 1 or 2 servings.

Roquefort Cream

Gently warm about 4 tablespoons heavy cream in a pan over medium heat; reduce slightly. Add crumbled Roquefort cheese to taste and allow to melt. Mix with peas and ham.

INDIAN CORN PUDDING

5 cups milk
1/3 cup cornmeal
3/4 cup molasses
4 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup raisins (optional)

Combine 4 cups of the milk and the cornmeal in a pot set over another pot full of simmering water.  Bring to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes, stirring frequently.  Stir in the remaining ingredients and pour into a greased baking dish that is deeper than it is wide. Bake in a preheated 300F for 1 hour.  Pour the remaining 1 cup milk over the pudding without stirring and bake an additional 2 hours.  Serve hot or warm with cream or ice cream if desired. Serves 6 to 8.

LATINO BARBECUE BURGERS

2  tablespoons olive oil
1  tablespoon butter
1/2  pound mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1/4  teaspoon kosher or coarse salt
1/4  teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1  tablespoon sherry wine vinegar or red wine vinegar
2  pounds extra-lean ground beef
   Latino Barbecue Catsup (see recipe below)
4  large buns, split

Heat oil and butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, kosher salt, and pepper. Cook for 3 minutes or until mushrooms are just tender. Add vinegar. Cook and stir for 2 minutes or until most of liquid has evaporated. Set aside.

Shape beef into 8 thin patties 3-1/2 to 4 inches in diameter. Place 1/4 of the mushroom mixture in center of 4 of the patties. Top with remaining patties. Pinch together edges of each double patty, making sure all edges are well-sealed.

Place burgers on the lightly oiled rack of the grill directly over medium heat. Grill for 12 minutes; turn. Brush burgers with 1/4 cup of the Latino Barbecue Catsup. Grill 12 to 14 minutes more or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center registers 160 degree F. Toast buns on grill, if desired. To serve, place the burgers on the buns. Pass remaining Latino Barbecue Catsup. Makes 4 burgers.

Latino Barbecue Catsup: Combine 1 cup chopped green onions, 1/4 to 1/2 cup chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, 1 jalapeno pepper, chopped; 2 cloves garlic, minced; 1 tablespoon snipped fresh oregano, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a food processor bowl. Cover; process until combined. Add 1 cup catsup, 1/4 cup red wine vinegar, and 2 tablespoons olive oil; process until smooth. Makes 1-2/3 cups. You can prepare the Latino Barbecue Catsup up to 3 days in advance, then cover and chill it until using.

LAZY WIFE PICKLES

Wash cucumbers and dry pack in jars
Add to each jar:
2 Tbsp. salt
2 Tbsp. dry mustard
4 Tbsp. sugar

Fill Jars with cold vinegar; seal. Ready in 6 weeks.

LENTIL SALAD
Servings: 10

1/3 cup sherry vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon minced shallots
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
8 ounces French green lentils (Le Puy)
2 to 3 medium tomatoes (about 1 cup chopped)
1/4 pound bacon, diced (about 5 strips)
1 cup coarsely chopped toasted walnuts
1/2 cup chopped green onions

1. To make the dressing, combine the vinegar, sugar and shallots in a bowl. Slowly beat in the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (Makes three-fourths cup.)

Cook the lentils in boiling salted water until tender but not mushy, about 25 to 30 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Place the tomatoes in boiling water for 30 seconds, remove and plunge them into an ice bath for a few minutes. Peel, seed and chop.

Heat a medium skillet and add the bacon. Cook until the fat has rendered and the bacon is crisp, about 10 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine the lentils, tomatoes, bacon and walnuts. Add one-half to three-fourths cup sherry vinaigrette and stir to combine. Sprinkle with green onions.

LONDON BROIL MARINATED IN GOOD STUFF

1 cup hearty dry red wine (such as Hungarian Bull's Blood)
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
8-10 cloves garlic (or to taste), mashed
1-2 sprigs fresh rosemary, bruised
2 bay leaves, bruised
2-3 sprigs fresh thyme

Crush lightly together in mortar and pestle:
8 whole black peppercorns
4 whole allspice
3 whole coriander seeds
1 tsp. cumin seeds

Place oil and vinegar in blender and whiz to emulsify.  Pour it into a flat-bottomed glass bowl and whisk in the herbs and spices.  Add the flank steak (cut used for the London broil method) and turn over.  Marinate at least 12 hours, up to 24, turning several times. 

Light the coals and reach a good heat.  Lay the marinated meat on and cook 5 minutes on the first side, occasionally spooning a bit of the marinade on the upper side.  Watch out for its falling onto the coals and flaming up!  Turn and cook on the other side an additional 5 minutes, or however long you want for the degree of doneness you prefer (the rarer it is, the better it tastes!).  Remove to a clean cutting board and let rest 5 minutes, then slice thinly on the diagonal. 

MACARONI SALAD

Half a box of elbows, cooked
2 carrots, grated
1 or 2 crisp celery center stalks diced fine
1 small can of peas, use a bit of the juice from the can
2  teaspoons of sweet relish, or to taste
1 small onion, diced
1/2 teaspoon of salt,  optional
3 heaping Tablespoons of Mayonnaise, more if needed

Mix all of this very well, and taste for seasonings.  Chill it overnight; the longer it sits the better it gets. before serving. Just before serving, check and correct (if necessary) the seasoning. If you want, a crisp red pepper can be diced and added. Cooked salad shrimp makes another nice addition.

MALAGA WHITE ALMOND GAZPACHO

7 oz. stale bread, crusts removed
7 oz. almonds, blanched and skinned
3 cloves garlic
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
5 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
2 tsp. salt
1 quart icy cold water
5 oz muscatel grapes, seeded
..
This white gazpacho is usually made with ground almonds, preferably "green" or freshly harvested ones. In the springtime, ground fava beans (habas) are substituted. If it’s too early in the summer for grapes, chopped apple or melon can be substituted. This would traditionally be made by crushing the almonds to a paste in a mortar. The processor leaves them grainier, so if desired, pass the soup through a sieve.

Soak the bread in water until softened, squeeze it out and put in a blender or processor with the almonds and garlic. Blend to a smooth paste, adding a little water if necessary. With the motor running, add the oil in a slow stream, then the vinegar and salt. Beat in some of the water, then pour the mixture into a tureen,
wooden bowl or pitcher and add the remaining water. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt or vinegar if needed. The soup should be fairly tangy. Serve immediately or chill the soup. Stir before serving. Garnish the bowls with grapes.
Add ice cubes when serving if desired. Serves 4-6.

MANGO CUCUMBER SALSA

This recipe was created to accompany Seared Rosemary Scallops.

1 firm-ripe small mango
1/3 English cucumber
2 tablespoons finely chopped scallion
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

Peel mango and cut flesh from pit. Cut mango into 1/4-inch dice and transfer to a small bowl. Halve and seed cucumber. Cut cucumber into 1/4-inch dice and add to mango. Stir in remaining ingredients until combined well and season with salt and pepper. Makes 2 Servings.

MOCHA MOUSSE
Yield: 6 Servings

1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/4 cup low-fat (1%) cottage cheese
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons powdered instant coffee
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon frozen orange juice concentrate
2 tablespoons blanched slivered almonds
Fruit, ladyfingers, graham crackers or baked pie crust (optional)

Blend all ingredients except almonds in a blender or a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Top with almonds.

MOROCCAN CHICKEN TAGINE

1 chicken
4 onions sliced
Olive oil
Good pinch saffron threads
Bay leaf
3 small red chili peppers
Salt and pepper
1 cinnamon stick broken in half
Handful of prunes soaking in water
Handful on peeled almonds

Cut up a chicken into regular pieces. Fry onions in olive oil in ceramic dish. Sauté chicken pieces in olive oil in skillet and add to onions as their skins are golden. Add all the spices to the onion mixture. Add prunes to chicken and deglaze skillet
with soaking water. Add to chicken and simmer about 40 minutes half covered. Fry almonds in a little olive oil or toast then in toaster or oven. Remove chilies, bay leaf and cinnamon stick. Serve on couscous or rice and scatter almonds on top.

MUSSEL BROSE

3 dozen live mussels, scrubbed and beards removed
1 large leek, white part and some of the green part, finely chopped
1 rib celery, finely chopped
1 medium onion, finely chopped
4 sprigs parsley
1 cup dry hard cider or pale ale, preferably English
3 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
A grating of fresh nutmeg

Combine the mussels leeks, celery, onion, parsley, and cider in a large pot and bring to a boil over high heat.  Reduce the heat and simmer covered until the mussels open, about 10 minutes.  Using a slotted spoon, transfer the mussels to a separate bowl.  Discard any unopened mussels.  (The mussels are traditionally served on the half shell, so you may remove and discard the half shell that doesn't contain the mussel, or you may remove the shells entirely.) Strain the stock through a double layer of cheesecloth (muslin) and return it to the pot.  In a separate pot, heat the butter over moderate heat and stir in the flour.  Cook for 3 minutes and add the milk, salt, pepper, and nutmeg.  Bring to a boil, stirring frequently.  Pour into the stock, add the mussels, and bring to a simmer, stirring frequently. Serves 4 to 6.

OLIVE OIL BREAD DIP

I cup olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 Tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
1 Tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
1 Tablespoon dried oregano
2 or 3 fresh garlic cloves, minced small
1/2 Teaspoon salt
1 Teaspoon pepper
1 or 2 Tablespoons sun dried tomatoes, chopped

Add all ingredients to olive oil.  Mix well and let set for 2 hours allowing the flavors to meld.

Brush on bread and bake until crusty or just dip pieces of bread in mixture

PEASE PUDDING
Pease pudding hot, Pease pudding cold,
Pease pudding in the pot - nine days old.
Some like it hot, some like it cold,
Some like it in the pot  - nine days old.
~^~^~
The old nursery rhyme attests to the staying power of this traditional English dish which can be refrigerated and reheated many times over a two- or three-week period.  It is also the traditional accompaniment to tomorrow's main dish, so you might want to file them together.
~^~^~^~^~
1 lb dried split green peas, picked over and thoroughly rinsed
2 cups water
4 Tbsp butter
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Bring the peas and water to a boil in a large pot over moderate heat. Reduce the heat and simmer partially covered, stirring occasionally, until the peas are tender, about 1 1/2 hours.  Drain the peas and puree them in a food processor or by passing the through a fine sieve. Return the peas to the pot and stir in the butter, salt, and pepper. Keep warm over low heat until ready to serve.  Serves 6 to 8.

PEPPERS STUFFED WITH CORN AND CRAB MEAT

4-6 green or red bell peppers (capsicums), cored and seeded
2 1/2 cups canned, frozen, or fresh corn kernels
1 6-oz can crab meat, drained and picked over
1 4-oz jar pimientos, drained and chopped
1 egg
1/2 cup half-and-half or milk
1 Tbsp melted butter
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Cayenne pepper to taste (optional)

Steam or boil the peppers until almost tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.  Combine the corn, crab meat, and pimientos in a pot over low heat.  Whisk together the remaining ingredients and add to the corn mixture.  Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is hot and slightly thickened, about 15 minutes.  Fill the peppers with the corn mixture and serve immediately.  Serves 4 to 6.

PESHE EN SALTSA
(Fish in sauce) A Passover dish, from a Jewish community in Rhodes

2 lbs fish steaks (any solid-fleshed white fish will do)
1 lb rhubarb
3 cups water
2 lbs tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 cup red wine
2+ tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp honey
juice of 2 lemons
salt and pepper

Clean the rhubarb, strip off the heavy filaments, and cut into 1-inch sections. Bring three cups of water to a simmer, add the rhubarb, and cook over low heat until tender.

Simmer the tomatoes with 2 tbsp olive oil in a frying pan until they are reduced to a thick sauce. Add the red wine, stir in the honey and a little additional olive oil, salt and pepper. Add this to the rhubarb and water and mix well. Simmer over low heat until it is a rich sauce that will evenly coat the back of a wooden spoon, 20-30 minutes.

Heat a little olive oil in a large frying pan, add the fish steaks, and lightly brown on both sides. Then pour over them the sauce and simmer, tightly covered, for 15-20 minutes.

Carefully remove the steaks to a serving platter. Pour the sauce, and then the juice of 2 lemons, over them.

This is traditionally served cold (but it's good warm too). Serves 4-6.


PLATE-COOKED FISH PAILLARD WITH GINGER
GARLIC AND TOMATOES
Yield: 4 servings

4 (2-ounce) slices boneless, skinless fillet of salmon, tuna, halibut, red snapper,
sea bass or albacore, no thicker than 1/4 inch
3 tablespoons butter, divided use
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 cup fish stock, vegetable broth OR chicken broth
1 tablespoon finely grated or finely minced, peeled fresh ginger
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2/3 cup chopped tomatoes

For garnish: 12 sprigs cilantro

Notes: ChefTower calls these pieces of fish "paillard" because they are very thin like a paillard of veal.

Adjust oven rack to position 6- to 8-inches below broiler element. Preheat broiler.

Pound fish slices until evenly 1/8-inch thick. (Tower suggests cutting open large, zipper-style plastic bag and brushing it lightly with vegetable oil, then placing fish inside bag and pounding.) Use mallet or bottom of heavy pot.

Place 4 heat-resistant plates in oven or under broiler until hot. Remove and brush each with 1/2 teaspoon butter. Season fish with salt and pepper. Place 1 fillet on each plate. Combine stock or broth, ginger, garlic and tomatoes in skillet. Bring to boil on medium-high heat and cook 2 minutes. Whisk in remaining butter and pour over fish. Garnish plates with cilantro; by this time, fish will be cooked.

PRALINES

1 small package of vanilla pudding mix (not instant)
½ cup of dark brown sugar
1 cup of light brown sugar
6-ounce can of evaporated milk
1-tablespoon of butter
2 cups of pecan halves

Prepare a large cookie sheet by completely covering the bottom with a generous double layer of waxed paper, set aside.

In a medium-size saucepan add the pudding mix, sugar, milk and butter. Turn heat to low, stir and cook until the sugar dissolves, stirring constantly.

Once the sugar dissolves, stop stirring and cook until the mixture reaches
240 deg. F. on a candy thermometer, or a drop of the mixture forms a soft ball when dropped into a bowl of ice water.

Remove the mixture from the heat and stir in the pecan halves. Continue stirring until the mixture becomes thick. Drop the mixture by tablespoons on to your prepared cookie sheet at least 3-inches apart as the pralines will spread out as they settle onto the waxed paper.

Allow to cool and settle. Store pralines in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

Be sure to place waxed paper between layers to keep the pralines from sticking together. Note…any kind of nuts can be used for pralines, pecans are the norm but cashews, almonds and mixed nuts work just as well.


PURPLE POTATO, SUGAR SNAP PEA AND MINT SALAD
This recipe was created to accompany Seared Rosemary Scallops.

1/2 pound small purple or other boiling potatoes (about 5)
1/4 pound sugar snap peas, trimmed
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
10 fresh mint leaves, sliced thin

In a small heavy saucepan cover potatoes with cold salted water by 1 inch and simmer until tender, 15 to 20 minutes.

Transfer potatoes with a slotted spoon to a colander to drain and cool 10 minutes. Return water in pan to a boil and blanch snap peas until crisp-tender, about 1 minute. In a colander drain snap peas and refresh under cold water. Drain snap peas and pat dry with paper towels.

Cut potatoes lengthwise into quarters. In a bowl toss together potatoes, snap peas, vinegar, oil, mint, and salt and pepper to taste. Makes 2 Servings.

QUICK PRALINE BARS

      24      graham cracker squares
     1/2      cup  packed brown sugar
     1/2      cup  (1 stick) margarine or butter
     1/2      teaspoon  vanilla
     1/2      cup  chopped pecans

Heat oven to 350F.

Arrange graham crackers in single layer in ungreased jelly roll pan,
15 1/2 × 10 1/2 × 1 inch.

Heat brown sugar and margarine to boiling in 2-quart saucepan. Boil 1 minute, stirring constantly; remove from heat. Stir in vanilla.

Pour sugar mixture over crackers; spread evenly. Sprinkle with pecans. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until bubbly; cool slightly.  Yield: 24 servings.

RANCH PASTA SALAD

8 oz. small shell or spiral pasta
1 box frozen peas-with-carrots
1 to 2 cups diced ham (can use smoked turkey or crumbled bacon)
1 cup diced cheddar cheese (optional)
1 small can sliced black olives, drained (optional)
1 bottle Hidden Valley Ranch Original or Bacon dressing (OR see note below*)

Cook pasta according to package directions.  When pasta is tender, toss in frozen veggies, then immediately drain pasta/veggie mixture.  Transfer to mixing bowl.  Toss in ham, cheese, olives, and enough dressing to moisten to taste.  Chill before serving.  If salad thickens in fridge, add milk or dressing to taste.       *Don't substitute other brands because they're usually thinner than the name brand dressing.  If you prefer, whisk 1 envelope of ranch dressing mix with 1 cup of mayo and 1/2 cup milk/buttermilk to make your own dressing.

RASPBERRY GRANITA

3 cups water
1 cup sugar
4 cups fresh raspberries
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1/3 cup Chambord

Heat 1 cup of water and sugar and a saucepan and warm until sugar dissolves to make sugar syrup. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Place raspberries, lemon juice, 2 cups water and Chambord in a blender and blend until smooth. Stir in sugar syrup and mix well. Place in a freezer-safe container and freeze until firm; usually overnight. Remove from freezer 15 minutes before serving and scoop into individual glasses.

ROSE BEADS
[I (Spike the Grate) found this item on rose beads on the internet, having been submitted on Tuesday, 7 May 1996, by Kacey Levesque, at this site:
http://ibiblio.org/herbmed/archives/Best/1996/rose-beads.html ]

First thing to do is collect the rose petals in a brown paper bag so they don't get crushed. Optimum time is in the morning just after the dew has dried. I guess early evening wouldn't hurt either but I don't know about that. You can use petals that have dropped on the ground, i.e. after a rose has 'exploded' as my kids say, but don't use any brown edges of the petals. I just snip these off with scissors.

Second, The way I used to do this was with mortar and pestle, but now I use a mini chopper. Take the rose petals, you can mix colors as they are all going to turn to a dark shade of ebony anyway and you can mix scents too it they are compatible, and put them in the chopper dish and chop until very fine. Take out that bunch and put in a glass jar and continue chopping the rest of the petals a dish full at a time. Put them all in a glass jar and cover loosely.

Third, the next day you can chop more fresh or slightly fresh petals then add them to what is in the jar and process the whole bunch again. Continue doing this for the next few days until you get at least a cup of rose petal paste. Then start the process over with a new jar. This takes a lot of paste.

Fourth, once you've got the paste to the consistency of play-dough, take a small amount and roll it in your hands to make a ball the size of a green pea. For this step you will also need a large sheet of cardboard, I cut up sides of cartons from grocery store, and some rustproof straight pins. Once you have made the 'pea' stick a straight pin through it and stick this into the cardboard but don't let the bead touch the cardboard.

Fifth, put them in an out of the way place as they have to dry until hard. This time varies depending on the amount of humidity in the air but we have AC in the summer so it is usually no longer than 3 or 4 days for me.

Sixth, once they have dried polish them with a soft lint-free cloth, actually I have found that baby diapers work well, until they have a lustrous shine. They will be dark, depending on the color of the petals some are very black and some are a little shade of black but I have always mixed my Duets, (very pink) Don Juans, (very red), and some smelly yellow ones that I don't remember the name of.

Lastly, I use beading thread and a small eyed needle and string them in long enough strands to go over a head, as I make them for different people, knot the thread well, put a small dab of hot glue on the knot and you are off and running. Every once in a while I polish them up with another rub with a cloth, perhaps once or twice a year, and when you wear these in the summer months the fragrance of roses is pretty strong, not like being doused with perfume but you can tell they are there.

My girlfriend's grandmother got some made by her mother when she was a girl of 7 or 8, she is now 92, and you can still smell the fragrance of the roses.

A wonderful side benefit is that as you are making the paste your kitchen will smell like roses for most of the day until you cook something with a strong odor.

RUSSIAN STYLE BEET STEW

2 bunches beets
8-10 strips (streaky) bacon, rind removed, chopped
1 1/2 lbs short ribs of beef
2 young onions, halved and sliced thinly
1/2 lb kielbasa (Polish smoked sausage),
sliced 1” thick
1-1 1/2 quarts water
6 juniper berries
1 bay leaf, bruised
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
8 oz full-fat yogurt (or more to taste)

Prepare the beets: Cut the stems from the roots about 1" above the roots. Drop the roots into cool water. Cut the stems from the leaves. Lift the beetroots out of the water and place I a colander. Pour the water out of the basin, making sure to
rinse all the grit out. Put the beets into more water and let sit several minutes again. Pour out water. Repeat until the roots release no more grit. It may take 4-6 rinses. Put the stems into fresh, cool water. Prepare a bowl of icy cold water.
Bring a small pot of water to a boil and add the beetroots. Cook 5 minutes then plunge the beetroots into the icy water. Break the bit of stem off the top and discard. Lightly rub off the skin with your finger. Place the gently peeled beetroots in a bowl and reserve.

Lift the beet stems out of the water; rinse the basin and repeat until the stems no longer release grit. This usually takes 3 rinses. Set aside. Put the leaves into cool water and let sit while the dirt is released. Chop the stems into 1" piece. Lift the leaves out of the water and rinse out the basin. Repeat until the leaves release no more dirt and grit. This may take as many as 6 rinses.

Chiffonade the leaves: Stack several leaves together and roll them up cigar-style. Use a chef's knife to slice them thinly. Repeat with the remaining leaves.

When the roots are cool enough to handle, cut into pieces of about 1/2"/1cm.

Reserve the roots, stems and leaves separately.

Prepare the stew: In a stew pot or Dutch oven, cook the bacon over medium heat until it releases enough fat to coat the bottom of the pot. Add the beef ribs and brown them on all sides. Add the onions and caramelize. Add the kielbasa, water, juniper berries, beetroots and stems and bay leaf. Bring to a boil; reduce
to a simmer and cook, covered, 30 minutes. Add the leaves and cook 10-15 minutes, until the leaves are as tender as you like them. Add salt and pepper. Serve hot topped with dollops of yogurt.

If you prefer to serve it as a cold meal on a very hot day, use a slotted spoon to lift out the beef and kielbasa. Reserve it in a bowl with some of the liquid and cover it. After adding salt and pepper, chill the vegetables in the liquid. When it is cold, stir in most of the yogurt, reserving more to garnish the top with. Serve the cold beet and yogurt soup as the starter. Reheat the meat and sausage to serve as the main course, accompanied by the slaw and rolls. Serves 4-6.
SCALLOPED CORN

2 cups fresh corn; canned corn, drained and rinsed; or frozen corn, thawed
2 eggs, beaten
1 green or red bell pepper (capsicum), seeded and chopped
3/4 cup heavy cream, half-and-half, or milk
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1 Tbsp butter

Combine the corn, eggs, bell pepper, salt, and pepper.  Pour into a greased baking dish or soufflé dish and sprinkle with the bread crumbs.  Dot with the butter and bake in a preheated 325F (160C) oven for 30 minutes.  Serves 4 to 6.

SEARED ROSEMARY SCALLOPS

four 12-inch-long rosemary branches or 10-inch bamboo skewers
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
16 medium sea scallops (about 1/8 pound)
2 tablespoons olive oil

Accompaniments if desired:
Purple Potato, Sugar Snap Pea, and Mint Salad
Mango Cucumber Salsa

If using rosemary branches, remove leaves from all but top 3 inches of each branch. In a small bowl stir together chopped rosemary, paprika, and cayenne. Remove tough muscle from side of each scallop if necessary and pat scallops dry. Season scallops with salt and sprinkle with rosemary mixture. Thread
4 scallops onto each rosemary branch or bamboo skewer.

In a large non-stick skillet heat oil over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking and sauté scallops until golden and just cooked through, 1 to 2 minutes on each side.

Serve scallops with potato salad and mango salsa. Makes 2 Servings.

SHORT RIBS
From Chef Matthew Whyles, on the Queen Mary 2

6 large short ribs
6 teaspoons salt, or to taste
6 teaspoons of pepper, or to taste
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons capers, chopped
2 tablespoons garlic, chopped
4 anchovy filets, chopped
1 large white onion, julienned
1 cup red wine
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
28-ounce can Italian plum tomatoes
3 cups veal or beef stock
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1 sprig fresh thyme
Pinch chili pepper flakes

Salt and pepper each short rib liberally because you will lose some of the seasoning in the cooking. Sear them in the oil in a hot cast-iron, or other heavy, skillet. When the ribs are browned, remove them and set aside. Remove most of the oil from the pan, leaving enough (about 1 to 2 tablespoons) to sauté the capers, garlic and anchovies over medium-high heat.

When the mixture is caramelized, add the julienned onion. Cook further until the onion is soft and caramelized. Deglaze the pan with the red wine and reduce until nearly gone.

Add the balsamic vinegar and reduce further. (Each reduction takes about 5 minutes.) Add the brown sugar and tomatoes and reduce again. Break up the tomatoes with a spoon as they cook. Add more pepper and check to see if more salt is needed. Add the veal stock, bring to a boil, and turn off heat. Add ribs, fresh herbs and chili pepper to the pan and cover with aluminum foil or a tight lid. Braise in a preheated 300 F oven for about 2 1/2 hours. When done the meat will
be soft and falling from the bones.

Remove ribs and set aside. Strain the liquid left in the pan. Deglaze the pan on the stove top with some of the liquid or more red wine. Return all the strained liquid to the pan, and reduce until syrupy.

To serve: Put a mound of potatoes in the center of each dish. Lay a short rib (bone and meat) over the potatoes and arrange vegetables alongside. Drizzle the red wine glaze over all. Serves 6.

SPANISH RICE

2 cups of white rice
3 or 4 - 16 ounce cans of tomato sauce
1 - 16 ounce block of sharp cheddar cheese
1 small onion (optional)
1 small green pepper (optional)
Grated Parmesan cheese (like you put on spaghetti)
Salt
Black Pepper
Garlic Powder

Prepare rice as directed on bag, drain the rice after cooking, rinse and drain again. Cut the cheddar cheese into very small bite size pieces. Peel and dice onion. Dice green pepper, removing stem and seeds.

Place the cooked rice into a large bowl; add the cheese and the diced onion and green pepper. Add the 3 cans of tomato sauce to the rice mixture and blend thoroughly. Mixture should be soupy looking, yet thick, if it is not, add more tomato sauce. Note…this recipe will not taste as it should if there is not enough tomato sauce.

Pour the rice mixture into a large baking dish. Smooth the top and lightly cover the top with the grated Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper and garlic powder.

Place the rice mixture into a preheated 375-degree oven for approximately 30 minutes or until sauce is bubbling, cheese has melted and a light crust appears on the top. Remove from heat and serve hot.

SPRING RICE SALAD

1 Tbsp peanut oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
2” fresh gingerroot, minced

2 Tbsp. peanut oil
1 Tbsp. toasted (dark) sesame oil (do not substitute the light kind)
Juice of 2 Meyer lemons
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1 bunch asparagus, broken into 1” lengths, steamed
3 bulbous scallions (green onions, spring onions), white and green parts, sliced
1 bulb fennel, thinly sliced and lightly steamed
1 huge handful snow peas (mangetouts), halved, lightly steamed
Small handful fresh mint leaves, chiffonade
Several leaves Genoa basil, chiffonade
Peel of 2 Meyer lemons, finely slivered
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

2 cups brown basmati rice, steamed

Fresh leaves of Swiss chard, beets romaine or butter head (Boston) lettuce
Additional fresh mint and/or basil leaves

Heat the peanut oil in a small skillet and sauté the garlic and ginger until limp. Remove from heat.

Whisk the oils and Meyer lemon juice until they start to emulsify. Scrape the oil, garlic and ginger out of the skillet and into the oil-lemon juice mixture. Whisk in salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

Toss together the vegetables, herbs and pine nuts with half the dressing. Let marinate about 15 minutes.

Toss the cooked rice with the remaining dressing, then toss it all with the marinated vegetables. Arrange greens on a platter or in a wide clear glass bowl and pile the rice salad on top. Garnish with herb leaves. Enjoy warm, room temperature or cold. Serves 6-8 as a starter or side dish, 4-6 as a main dish.
Leftovers are excellent in the lunch box.

STRAWBERRY MACAROONS
Brian Streeter, chef, Cakebread Cellars

Macaroons

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/3 cup almond flour
1 egg white
2 tsp. sugar
Kosher salt
1 drop red food coloring

Strawberry Puree

1 pint strawberries, halved
2 Tbsp. sugar

Buttercream

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1/3 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Make macaroons: Sift together powdered sugar and almond flour. Whip egg whites till frothy. Add sugar and whip until stiff peaks form. Stir in pinch of salt and food coloring. Fold in half the sugar and almond mixture with a rubber spatula. When almost combined add the other half of the sugar and almond mixture and fold in until just combined. Place in a pastry bag with a half-inch, straight-sided tip and pipe one-inch rounds on parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Space an inch apart. Bake for about 15 minutes, until light brown and dry.
Cool on racks.

Make strawberry purée: Combine the strawberries and sugar in a small saucepan. Cover and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes until berries soften and become juicy. Puree in a blender. Strain through a fine mesh sieve. Set aside.

Make buttercream: Beat butter until light and creamy with a wooden spoon in a small bowl. Stir in powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon strawberry puree. Place in a pastry bag with a half-inch, straight-sided tip. Pipe 1 teaspoon onto half of the macaroons and top each with the remaining macaroons. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Freeze any remaining strawberry puree and refrigerate any remaining butter cream. Serves 2 or more. Makes about 12 cookies.

STRAWBERRY-RHUBARB DESSERT

3 cups diced rhubarb
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
1 can evaporated milk
1 three-ounce package strawberry j-ello

Stir well and cook until well blended and rhubarb is stringy.

Cool until a little thick. Add some cut up fresh strawberries and fold in whipped evaporated milk. Put this over a cookie or graham cracker crust in a 9 x 9 inch square pan.

Now, you can use a carton of Cool Whip to fold in. You can do this in a pie crust, also. If you don’t have the fresh strawberries you can drain a 15 ounce can of crushed pineapple and stir that into the rhubarb..

STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE

A big bucketful of freshly picked strawberries (or equivalent purchased)
A little sugar to macerate if desired

1 pint heavy (whipping, double) cream--or more to taste
2 tsp sugar
Plenty of softened *unsalted* butter (no margarine!)

Wash the strawberries and spread on a large terry towel to drain dry. Remove hulls. Choose half of them, the prettiest ones, and leave whole. Slice the rest and set aside. If you like, sprinkle lightly with sugar.

Whip the cream with 2 tsp sugar, or if you prefer less or none. Refrigerate.

For the shortcake:
2 cupsflour
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp baking powder
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 cups heavy (double, whipping) cream
6 Tbsp. melted unsalted butter (no substitutions!)

Preheat the oven to 425 F.

Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl. Make a well in the center and add the cream and butter; mix well and let rest a few minutes. Place the dough in a 9” round cake pan. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until nicely browned.

Remove the cake from the pan and slice it in half horizontally. Generously spread both cut sides with unsalted butter. Place the bottom half of the cake on a pretty cake plate and scoop lots of whipped cream over it. Put the sliced strawberries on top of the whipped cream, then add more whipped cream. Place the top half of the cake over the whipped cream. Spread it generously with the remaining whipped cream and arrange the whole strawberries prettily around the top. Serve immediately, while the cake is still warm. Serves 4-6.

STROGANOFF MEATBALLS

  1 1/4     cups  beef broth
      2       tablespoons  flour
      2       teaspoons  Worcestershire sauce
     16      frozen cooked meatballs -- (about 1 1/2 inches in diameter)
      1       (4 1/2-ounce) jar  sliced mushrooms -- drained
     1/2     cup  sour cream
      1       tablespoon  chopped fresh parsley

Beat broth, flour and Worcestershire sauce in small bowl with wire whisk.

Place frozen meatballs, mushrooms and broth mixture in 10-inch skillet. Heat to boiling; reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer 4 to 6 minutes or until meatballs are hot.

Remove meatballs from heat. Stir in sour cream and parsley.  Yield: 4 servings.

SZECHUAN EGGPLANT

1 1/12 pounds of eggplant, cut into 3 inch strips (the skinny Japanese eggplant)
1 Tbsp. canola oil
1 tsp. sesame oil
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 Tbsp. honey
1 Tbsp. tarragon vinegar
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 Tbsp. chicken broth
1 tsp. crushed garlic
1 tsp. minced fresh ginger
1 tsp. Thai (or Vietnamese) chili garlic sauce
1 cup mushrooms (shiitake or straw), if desired.

Place oil in pan and heat. Sauté eggplant over medium heat until golden brown (this takes about 8-10 minutes). Stir the other ingredients together and then add to eggplant. Cook two more minutes and serve.

TABBOULEH SALAD

4 cups cooked bulgur wheat (cook according to package instructions)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
4 Roma tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup fresh mint, chopped
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 cucumber peeled, seeded and diced
1 small jar artichoke hearts drained and diced
Salt and pepper to taste

Place cooked bulgur wheat in a large bowl and allow to cool. When bulgur wheat is cool add remaining ingredients and stir well. Chill for 2 - 3 hours before serving. Serve chilled

TEXAS CAVIAR

2 cups fresh tomatoes, chopped
1 can black-eyed peas, drained
1 small sweet onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and chill for several hours before serving with tortilla chips. If you wish, you may also serve with the main course.

TWENTY-MINUTE BLUEBERRY TART
by Chef Jeremiah Tower Yield: 6-8 servings

For pastry:
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus additional flour as needed
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/4 cup cold water

For filling:
1 quart fresh blueberries
1/2 cup red currant jelly or seedless raspberry jelly
1/4 cup water

Notes: Chef Tower writes that this tart takes just 20 minutes if you have a tart shell on hand. If you're making the dough as directed here, it will take more time. In a pinch, use purchased refrigerated pie dough.

In bowl or large bowl of electric mixer, combine flour, sugar and salt. Add butter and mix quickly into flour (or if using electric mixer, use paddle attachment to mix until butter is in very small pieces the size of corn kernels). Add water and blend together, gathering mass into ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until
needed.

Place pastry on lightly floured work surface. If dough is cold and hard, beat it gently with rolling pin to soften it. Shape into flattened circle. Dust top with flour, turn over, dust again and roll out into 14-inch or 15-inch round. Fit into (9- to 10-inch) round tart pan with removeable bottom.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Bake tart shell until golden, about 15 minutes. Place on rack to cool.

Meanwhile, spill berries out on tray and pick out and discard any squashed or unripe ones, stems and leaves. Place berries in bowl. Heat jelly and water in small saucepan on medium-high heat until just barely bubbling, stirring until there are no lumps, but only 5 minutes at the most. Pour jelly syrup through sieve over bowl of berries and immediately toss bowl up and down and round to coat berries, or stir very gently with rubber spatula. Pour berries into shell, mounded up in center. Serve immediately or store at room temperature for several hours.

UKRAINIAN MEATLESS BORSCHT

1 1/2 quart water
5 14.5 oz cans beef broth or 2 quarts beef stock
1 bunch beets peeled & julienned
beet leaves (chopped or julienned)
3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp butter
3 small onions chopped
1 small green cabbage shredded or chopped
1 6 oz can tomato paste
4 Tbsp parsley minced
a few bay leaves
salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
heavy cream (optional)
 
In a large stock pot, combine all ingredients except for heavy cream.  Bring to boil. Cover and simmer until tender.  Stirring occasionally. Simmer this for a couple of hours.  Once cooked, remove bay leaves.  Serve with some heavy cream.  Leftovers freeze well.

WHISTLE STOP'S BANANA BREAD
Note: This also makes terrific French toast

1 stick butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
2 ounces dark rum
3 ripe bananas, 1/4-inch dice
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Sift together flour, baking powder and salt and set aside.

Cream together butter and sugars. Beat in eggs one at a time on low speed. Add bananas and run; do not overmix. Mix in the flour in thirds. Do not overmix.

Place in buttered loaf pans and bake at 350 degrees for 45 to 60 minutes.

WHISTLE STOP'S CHOCOLATE BANANA
BREAD PUDDING

1 loaf banana bread (see recipe), in 1/2-inch cubes
Chocolate custard (below)

Place cubed bread in bowl. Cover with custard and let sit until custard is absorbed. Pour mixture into a buttered mold. Bake in a water bath at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes. Cool in mold and serve.

WHISTLE STOP'S CHOCOLATE CUSTARD

1 cup heavy cream
3 cups milk
12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup brown sugar
3 ounces butter
4 eggs
3 yolks

Combine milk, cream and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Pour over chocolate and butter. Mix until melted and smooth. Temper into eggs and yolks. Cool over ice bath. The Whistle Stop Restaurant is in New London, CT.

WISH-INSPIRED CARROT CAKE
The secret to the cake served at Wish is the Grand Marnier it's soaked in and the ground ginger added to the frosting. Serve with a scoop of lemon sorbet and crushed cashews.

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
4 eggs, lightly beaten
3 cups finely shredded carrots (lightly packed)
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup Grand Marnier
Gingery Cream Cheese Frosting (see note)

Grease and flour 2 (9-inch) round cake pans or a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking soda. In another bowl, stir together the eggs, carrots and oil. Stir carrot mixture into dry ingredients until combined. Bake in prepared pan(s), 30 to 35 minutes for layers, 40 to 45 minutes for 9-by-13, until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Brush warm cake(s) with Grand Marnier. Cool completely on wire racks before frosting. (If making layers, remove from pans after 10 minutes.) Refrigerate if not serving immediately.

Note: To make frosting, beat together 8 ounces softened cream cheese, 1 stick softened butter, 1 tablespoon dried ground ginger and 2 teaspoons frozen orange juice concentrate. Gradually beat in sifted confectioners' sugar -- about 6 cups -- until frosting is spreadable. (Makes enough for layer cake; can be halved for sheet cake.) Makes 12 servings.

ZUCCHINI SQUASH CASSEROLE

6 medium zucchini (sliced)
1 lb. hamburger
1 can cream of mushroom, chicken, or celery soup
1 onion (finely chopped)
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp oregano
1/3 lb cheddar cheese (grated)
1 cup cracker crumbs

Boil zucchini slices in small amount of water for 6 minutes; drain.  While squash is cooking, brown ground meat; drain off fat. Combine with remaining ingredients. Mix well. Add squash and stir. Pour into greased 2-quart casserole or 2 1-quart casseroles. Options: Can use onion soup instead of onion, especially if more liquid is needed (some squashes are dry and add no water at all).





 

 

 

 

 

 

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