Sunday, December 16, 2007

Eggnog Quick Bread

Mix up this quick treat for drop-in company!

2 eggs

1 c. sugar

1 c. dairy eggnog

1/2 c. margarine, melted

2 t. rum extract

1 t. vanilla

2 1/4 c. flour

2 t. baking powder

1/4 t. nutmeg

Beat eggs in a large bowl, then add next 5 ingredients, blending well.
Add remaining ingredients and stir until just moist. Pour into a greased
loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees for 45 to 50 minutes.

North Georgia Caviar

This will keep refrigerated in a plastic container for several days. It is good with corn bread or as a side item with hamburgers and hot dogs.

But best served with Tostitos Scoops.

2 (15-ounce) cans black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed

1 (15-ounce) can shoe peg corn, drained

1 (10-ounce) can Rotel tomatoes, drained

1 medium green bell pepper, chopped

6 whole green onions, chopped

1 (16-ounce) bottle Italian dressing

In a large mixing bowl combine the black-eyed peas, corn, tomatoes, bell pepper, onions, and dressing. Mix thoroughly. Refrigerate until ready to serve.


Saturday, November 17, 2007

Peach Pie Quick Bread

First snowfall last evening. Two inches on the ground at 7 AM. Boys were up at 4:30 AM to take advantage of opening day of deer season. Joan prepared this quick bread to welcome them home.

Preparation: 10 Min., Cook: 8 Min., Bake 1 hr.

Cool: 25 Min.

Depending on the number of guests, you may need to double or triple this recipe. It's great served warm: expect a little crumbling when you slice it. It's also good at room temperature the next day and will slice beautifully.

1 cup chopped pecans
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. grated lemon rind
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup canola oil
3 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 (21 -oz.) can peach fruit filling
Cooking spray for baking

1. Heat chopped pecans in a small non-stick skillet over medium-low heat, stirring often, 5 to 8 minutes or until toasted.

2. Stir together flour and next 3 ingredients in bowl of an electric mixer. Whisk together sugar, oil, and eggs. Gradually add sugar mixture to flour mixture, beating at low speed until blended. Stir in vanilla. Fold in fruit filling and pecans just until blended. Pour batter into 2 (8-
x 4-inch) loaf pans coated with cooking spray for baking.

3. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes; shield with aluminum foil to prevent excessive browning, if necessary, and bake 15 more minutes or until a long wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool loaves in pan on a wire rack 10 minutes. Remove from pans to wire rack, and cool 15 minutes.

Yield: Makes 2 loafs

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Pumpkin Pudding Cake

Very rich, and so easy!

3 eggs, beaten
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 (32-ounce) can pumpkin
1/2 teaspoon ginger (optional)
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1 (14-ounce) can evaporated milk
1 (2-layer) white or yellow cake mix
1 stick butter, melted
1 cup walnuts or pecans, chopped

Whipped cream or ice cream

Mix eggs, sugar, cinnamon, pumpkin, ginger, cloves, and milk. Whisk until blended and pour into a greased or sprayed 9 x 13-inch pan. Sprinkle 1 package cake mix over top. Drizzle melted butter over top. Sprinkle wit chopped nuts. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

Serve with whipped cream or ice cream.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Lemon Garlic Chicken

Dip 4 boneless chicken breast halves (about 1 1/4 Ibs.) in 1/4 cup flour, shaking off excess. In nonstick skillet, melt 2 Tbsp. of margarine over medium-high heat and brown chicken, turning once. Stir in 1 envelope Lipton Recipe Secrets - Savory Herb & Garlic Soup Mix blended with 1 3/4 cups water and 2 Tbsp. lemon juice. Reduce heat and simmer covered 5 minutes or until chicken is thoroughly cooked.

Serve lemon garlic chicken with wild rice.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Taco Soup

Do not be put off by the list of ingredients. This recipe is OOH-SO-EASY. The most work you will have to do is to open cans for a hearty soup the whole family will love.

1 pound of ground beef
1 large onion, chopped
3 (15 1/2-ounce) cans Mexican-style chili beans, undrained
3 (15 1/4-ounce) can whole kernel corn, undrained
1 (15-ounce) can of tomato sauce
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 (4.5-ounce) can chopped green chiles
2 (1 1/4-ounce) envelope of taco seasoning mix
1 (1-ounce) envelope Ranch-style dressing mix
1 1/2 cups water

Toppings: corn chips, shredded lettuce, chopped tomato, sour cream, shredded Cheddar cheese

1. Cook beef and onions in a Dutch oven medium-high heat until meat is browned and onions are tender, stirring until meat crumbles; drain.

2. Stir beans and next 7 ingredients into beef mixture; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Spoon soup into bowls; top with desired toppings.

Makes - 3 1/2 quarts

Monday, September 17, 2007

Chicken and Artichokes

The temperature dipped into the low 60s. Joan did not want to see me sweater up over the grill. So we had chicken prepared inside instead of out. This one is easy. Five ingredients only. So "Gimme five."

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves

2 teaspoons olive oil

1 (14 1/2 ounce) can diced tomatoes with green peppers and onions

1/4 cup sun-dried tomato pesto

1 (14-ounce) can artichoke hearts in water, drained, quartered

Wash chicken, then sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil, and cook chicken on both sides till nearly done. Remove chicken from pan, and set aside.

In same pan, cook tomatoes for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add pesto, artichokes, and chicken. Cover and reduce heat. Simmer 5-10 minutes, or until chicken is done.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Grilled Bruschetta Chicken

Brad received this recipe as an email subscriber to An easy grill with no mess. Joan served the chicken with a side of pasta with crushed Italian tomatoes and a fresh garden salad.

Preparation Time: 5 min
Total Time: 30 min

1/4 cup KRAFT Sun-Dried Tomato Dressing, divided
4 small boneless skinless chicken breast halves (1 lb.)
1 medium tomato, finely chopped
1/2 cup KRAFT Shredded Low-Moisture Part-Skim Mozzarella Cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil or 1 tsp. dried basil leaves

PLACE large sheet of heavy-duty foil over half of grill grate; preheat grill to medium heat. Pour 2 Tbsp. of the dressing over chicken in resealable plastic bag; seal bag. Turn bag over several times to evenly coat chicken with the dressing. Refrigerate 10 min. to marinate. Remove chicken from marinade; discard bag and marinade.

GRILL chicken on uncovered side of grill 6 min. Meanwhile, combine tomatoes, cheese, basil and remaining 2 Tbsp. dressing.

TURN chicken over; place, cooked-side up, on foil on grill. Top evenly with tomato mixture. Close lid. Grill an additional 8 min. or until chicken is cooked through (170ºF).

Makes: 4 servings

Serving Suggestion
Serve with buttered egg noodles and grilled or steamed vegetables.

Nutrition (per serving)
Calories 200 Total fat 7g Saturated fat 2.5g Cholesterol 75mg Sodium 280mg Carbohydrate 3g Dietary fiber 1g Sugars 2g Protein 28g Vitamin A 10%DV Vitamin C 4%DV Calcium 10%DV Iron 6%DV

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Summer Tortellini Salad

This boil-and-toss salad is a versatile and hearty dish that makes a great one-bowl meal. You can also serve it as a side dish; just prepare the recipe without the meat.

Joan discovered this recipe in the July 2007 issue of Southern Living. The recipe was submitted for publication by Shirley Wood of San Antonio, Texas.

PREP: 10 MIN., COOK: 10 MIN., CHILL: 25 MIN.

1 (19-oz.) package frozen cheese tortellini (Joan used Wegmans Cheese Tortellini.)

2 cups chopped cooked chicken

1/4 cup sliced green olives

1/4 cup sliced black olives

1/4 cup diced red bell pepper

2 Tbsp. chopped sweet onion

2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley

2 Tbsp. mayonnaise

1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar

1 tsp. herbes de Provence (1 tsp. dried Italian seasoning may be substituted.)

1/4 cup canola oil

Salt to taste

Garnish: fresh parsley sprigs

1. Cook tortellini according to package directions; drain. Plunge into ice water to stop the cooking process; drain and place in large bowl. Stir in chicken and next 5 ingredients.

2. Whisk together mayonnaise, red wine vinegar, and herbes de Provence. Add oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly until smooth. Pour over tortellini mixture, tossing to coat. Stir in salt to taste. Cover and chill at least 25 minutes. Garnish, if desired.

Tuna Tortellini Salad: Substitute 1 (12-oz.) can albacore tuna, rinsed and drained well, for chicken. Prepare recipe as directed.

Monday, August 13, 2007

White Bean Salad

To complement pork steaks which were smothered in Sweet Baby Rays Gourmet Sauce, Joan prepared this quick salad with ingredients readily available in the pantry cupboard. Also, included Wegmans fresh corn-on-the-cob with the meal.

1 19-ounce can Cannelloni beans, rinsed and drained

1 large stalk celery, thinly sliced

1/2 roasted red pepper, chopped

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Coarse salt

Ground black pepper

1/2 cup basil leaves, torn

Place beans, celery, red pepper, vinegar and oil in a medium bowl. Toss until well combined.

Adjust seasonings with salt and pepper. Add basil and serve immediately or chilled.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007


After Nancy and Bob took Aunt Dorothea , Joan and I for a pleasant lunch served by Sarah at the Oxbow, they entertained us with dessert in their home. Nancy served us a luscious white cake filled with lemon and topped with white whipped frosting and fresh red raspberries. Over cake and ice tea trifles entered the conversation. Here are some of Joan’s favorite trifle recipes.


This English-inspired desert is easy on the cook and the eye.

1 (4 3/4-oz.) pkg. vanilla pudding and pie filling mix
3 cups milk
1 tablespoon grated orange peel
8 cups angel food cake cubes
(about 13-oz. cake)
3 tablespoons orange-flavored liqueur
or orange juice concentrate
1 (21-oz.) can strawberry fruit pie filling
1 (11-oz.) can mandarin orange segments, drained

Prepare pudding as directed on package using 3 cups milk. Remove from heat; stir in orange peel. Cover surface of pudding with waxed paper or plastic wrap; cool 15 minutes.

Line bottom of 2 1/2 or 3-quart trifle bowl or glass bowl with 1/3 of the cake cubes; drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the liqueur. Spoon 1/3 of pudding over top; spoon 1/3 of strawberry filling over pudding. Top with 1/3 of orange segments. Repeat layers 2 more times. Cover; refrigerate 3 hours or overnight. Garnish as desired. Store in refrigerator.

16 servings.

This recipe is from Pillsbury Classic Cookbooks #142 December 1992


Brownie Trifle makes a splendid centerpiece desert.

1 (19.8-oz.) pkg. package fudge brownie mix
1 (3.9-oz.) pkg. chocolate fudge instant pudding mix
1 (6-oz.) pkg. milk chocolate toffee chips
1 (12-oz.) container frozen whipped topping, thawed

Prepare brownie mix and bake according to package directions in 9x13-inch baking pan. Cool; crumble or cut into small pieces. Prepare chocolate fudge pudding mix according to package directions, omitting chilling procedure. Place half of crumbled brownies in bottom of a 3-quart trifle bowl; top with half each of pudding, toffee chips and whipped topping. repeat layers with remaining half of crumbled brownies, pudding, toffee chips and whipped topping. Cover and chill at least 8 hours. Garnish with mint and semisweet chocolate curls. (Soften 1 ounce of chocolate 10-15 seconds at 30% power in microwave. Shave off curls with vegetable peeler.)

Serves 16-18.

This recipe is from Country Folk Art - January 1998.


This desert was a bit hit at the 1998 Thanksgiving dinner .

1 14- or 14 1/2- oz. pkg. gingerbread mix
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
(note: use 1/2 cup if you use cranberry juice cocktail option below)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups cherry-cranberry drink or cranberry juice cocktail
1 1/2 cups frozen pitted tart red cherries
1 29-oz. can pear or peach slices, drained
Easy Lemon Cream

Prepare and bake gingerbread mix according to package directions. Cool. Cut into 1-inch cubes.

For the cherry sauce, in a medium saucepan combine brown sugar, cornstarch, and cinnamon. Stir in fruit drink. Add cherries. Cook and stir until thickened. Cook and stir 2 minutes more. Cover and cool; do not stir. (To make ahead, chill, covered, for up to 4 days.)

To assemble, in a 3-quart clear glass bowl or soufflé dish (see note below if you want to assemble it on a tray instead) spoon one-third of the Easy Lemon Cream. Add one-third of the cherry sauce. Sprinkle with half of the gingerbread. Spoon another one-third of the lemon cream over gingerbread. Top with another one-third of the cherry sauce. Arrange half of the sliced pears atop of the cherry sauce (cover and chill remaining pears). Layer remaining gingerbread, lemon cream, and cherry sauce. Cover; chill for 2 to 24 hours. To serve, arrange remaining pear slices atop trifle.

Makes 10 to 12 servings.

Easy Lemon Cream
Beat 1 cup whipping cream and 1 teaspoon vanilla just until soft peaks form. Fold in 1 cup purchased lemon pudding and stir gently until combined. For creamier texture, stir in 1 teaspoon lemon juice or milk.

To assemble trifle on 14X10 1/1 inch tray, double recipe. Slice gingerbread loaves into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Line tray with half of gingerbread. Cover with cherry sauce. Spoon on two-thirds of lemon cream and two-thirds of pears. Layer on remaining gingerbread. Cover and chill 2 to 24 hours. To serve, top with remaining lemon cream and pears.

This recipe is from Country Home - November/December 1998

Monday, July 30, 2007

Chocolate Zucchini Loaf

Here they come. But are we ready?
You have them. The neighbors drop them off.
Road side stands are giving them away.

Solution: use this recipe to help eliminate them.

Beware: this loaf can be addicting.

3 eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup milk
2 teaspoons grated orange peel
2 cups grated zucchini
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350.
Beat eggs; add oil, sugar and vanilla.
Combine dry ingredients.
Add to egg mixture alternately with milk.
Fold in orange peel, zucchini and walnuts.
Turn into two greased loaf pans.
Bake 50 minutes or until done.
Cool 10 minutes in pan.
Turn out and cool completely on wire rack.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Southern Corn Chowder

The boys were on their way to the mud bog in Union Springs. So Joan prepared this recipe to spice up their trip on what may turn into a cool and rainy evening.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

1/4 pound bacon, diced
1 cup onions, finely chopped
3 doves garlic, minced
1/2 cup celery, finely diced
1/4 cup red pepper, finely diced
1/4 cup green pepper, finely diced
1 tablespoon paprika
1/2 cup finely diced Idaho potato
1 tablespoon flour
1 bay leaf
6 cups chicken broth
1 cup (about two large ears) fresh corn cut from the cob
2 cups light cream or milk
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large, heavy soup pot, brown the bacon and add the onion. Sauté until the onion is transparent. Add the garlic and sauté for two more minutes. Add peppers, potato and paprika. Cook another minute or two. Combine flour with a little of the chicken stock and add to the mixture with the bay leaf and remaining stock. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes. Add corn and simmer another 15 minutes. Season to taste. Add cream and parsley.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Tropical Coleslaw

Michael and Bradley were helping Dana construct frames for her canvas. Dana joined us for dinner. As a side to the pork steaks and fresh corn on the cob, Joan served this updated deli staple. This is definitely not grandma's coleslaw.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Start to Finish: 30 minutes
14 Servings (1/2 cup each)

1 bay (16 0z.) coleslaw mix (shredded cabbage and carrots)

1 can (11 oz) mandarin orange segments, drained

2 medium green onions, chopped (2 tablespoons), if desired

1 container (6 oz) Yoplait Original 99% Fat Free Key lime pie yogurt

1/4 cup mayonnaise or salad dressing

1 teaspoon grated lime peel

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1/4 cup whole cashews

1 In large bowl, mix coleslaw mix, mandarin oranges and onions.

2 In small bowl, mix yogurt, mayonnaise, lime peel and lime juice; gently fold into coleslaw mixture. Refrigerate at least 15 minutes but no longer than 4 hours to blend flavors.

3 Just before serving, sprinkle with cashews. Cover;
refrigerate any remaining coleslaw.

PER SERVING: Calories 70; Total Fat 4.5g; Sodium 4O mg; Dietary Fiber 1g

EXCHANGES: 1 Vegetable, 1 Fat


Greek Cucumber Dip

Kathy brought over some cucumbers from Ziggy's garden. Combined the cukes with fresh tomatoes and scallions that we purchased at Sauder's this afternoon.

Joan served them at dinner with this dip submitted to the Post-Standard by registered dietitian Jackie Newgent.

1 cup fat-free yogurt or yogurt cheese (see note)

1/2 cup finely diced English (hothouse) cucumber with skin

2 tablespoons minced green onion (scallion)

1 large clove garlic, minced

1 tablespoon minced fresh dill or mint

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste

Stir all ingredients together in a medium bowl. Serve on a platter with sliced tomatoes and cucumbers that have been sprinkled with feta cheese.

Note: To make fat-free "yogurt cheese," line a mesh strainer with a double layer of plain paper towels or with cheesecloth. Place 2 cups fat-free plain yogurt in the strainer. Place the strainer over a bowl and allow it to drain; refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Makes about (1 1/4 cups) yogurt cheese.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Mango Black Bean Salsa

Who doesn't like to try out a new salsa?

Diced flesh of 2 mangoes
1 1/2 cups canned black beans, rinsed
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
1/2 red onion, minced
1/2 red bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
1/4 cup minced cilantro
Juice of 1 lime

Combine all ingredients. Keep refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Makes 8 servings.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Summer Couscous Salad

This summery meal won't heat up your kitchen. Refreshing mint, garlic, raisins, orange juice and couscous give this salad a hint of the Middle East. Couscous is made by moistening hard durum wheat and rolling it in flour to form tiny pellets. An authentic Moroccan couscous takes about an hour to make. Precooked couscous, the kind found in most supermarkets, takes only 5 minutes.

Cooking the onions until their natural juices caramelize, a process that takes about 10 minutes, gives the salad a natural sweet flavor. Let the onions cook while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.

The pita bread can be served warm or at room temperature. Warm the pita in a microwave or toaster oven to save heating up a large oven in hot weather.

Cooking tip: To keep couscous fluffy, toss with a fork rather than a spoon.

Timing tips: Start onions first, then measure remaining ingredients. Boil water for couscous. Complete recipe.

1/2 medium onion, sliced (1 cup)

1/2 cup couscous

2 sliced carrots (1 cup)

1/4 pound zucchini cut into 1-inch dice (1 cup)

2 medium cloves garlic, crushed

1/2 cup raisins

1 can (15.5-ounce) chickpeas, rinsed (1 1/2 cups)

1/3 cup orange juice

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 small tomatoes cut into 2-inch cubes (2 cups)

1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh mint

1/2 small head Romaine lettuce, washed and drained

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 medium pita breads

Pour 1/2 cup water into a medium-size nonstick skillet. Add onions and cook over medium heat 10 minutes. Add more water if onions become too dry.

In a saucepan with tight-fitting lid, bring 3/4 cup water to a boil; remove from heat and add couscous. Cover and let sit 5 minutes. Add carrots to onions and cook 5 minutes. Add zucchini and garlic and cook 5 more minutes.

Place couscous in a bowl and fluff with a fork. Add onion mixture, raisins and chickpeas and toss well. Mix orange juice, olive oil, cayenne and cinnamon together, then add to couscous and mix well. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Toss tomatoes and mint together. Line a serving platter or 2 individual plates with lettuce leaves and spoon on salad on top. Sprinkle tomatoes and mint over couscous salad. Place pita in toaster oven for 2 minutes to warm through, or warm in oven a few minutes. Makes 2 servings.

Per serving: 798 calories, 27 g protein, 151 g carbohydrates, 13 g fat; 28.2 g fiber, no cholesterol, 635 mg sodium (sodium will decrease if chickpeas are rinsed). Calories from fat: 14 percent.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Blueberry & Tortellini Fruit Salad

Having picked up fresh blueberries at Wegmans, decided to make this salad as a side to go with the Wegmans roasted chicken (a lemon pepper & a barbecued) that we also purchased.

Sue Mackay of Grindstone Farm submitted this recipe to the Post-Standard.

1/2 cup low-fat poppy seed dressing
1 9-ounce package three-cheese tortellini
1 cup sliced fresh strawberries
1 cup fresh blueberries
1 11-ounce can Mandarin orange segments, drained
3/4 cup green grapes
1/4 cup sliced almonds

Cook pasta according to directions, drain.

In large bowl add pasta and salad ingredients, pour dressing over it all and toss lightly.

Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Summer Squash Frittata

Since the temperature took an unseasonably downward spiral, Joan prepared this recipe from the July 2007 issue of Southern Living. While this frittata may be served cold with tomato sauce, Joan served it warm with salsa.

Preparation takes approximately 20 minutes, cooking approximately 15 minutes, and baking approximately 35 minutes.

3 Tbsp. butter
2 small zucchini, chopped into 1/2-inch cubes (about 2 cups)
2 small summer squash, chopped into 1/2-inch cubes (about 2 cups)
1 small onion, coarsely chopped (1/2 cup)
12 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil leaves

1. Melt 3 Tbsp. butter in a 10-inch ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat; add chopped zucchini, squash, and onion, and sauté 12 to 14 minutes or until onion is tender. Remove skillet from heat.

2. Whisk together eggs and next 3 ingredients until well blended. Pour over vegetable mixture in skillet.

3. Bake at 350° for 33 to 35 minutes or until edges are lightly browned and center is set. Sprinkle evenly with chopped fresh basil.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

In The Summertime

In the summer time when the weather is high
You can chase right up and touch the sky,
When the weather's fine
You got women, you got women on your mind.
Have a drink, have a drive
Go out and see what you can find.

If her Daddy's rich, take her out for a meal,
If her Daddy's poor, just do what you feel.
Scoot along the lake, do a town an' then return her twenty five.
When the sun goes down
You can make it, make it good and really fine.

With a fat beat, when her Daddy with a me,
We'll have everybody, but we do as we please.
When the weather's fine, we go fishing or go swimming in the sea,
We're always happy,
Long's we're living in this sound philosophy.

Sing along with us, dee dee dee dee dee
Da da da da da, yeah we're hap-pap-py.
Da da da dee da doo dee da dee da dee da da,
Da da da da da, dee da da dee da da.

When the wind is here, yeah it's party time,
Bring your bottle waggin' back, 'cuz it will soon be summer time.
And we'll signal a cab, we'll go driving or maybe we'll settle down,
If she's rich, if she's nice, bring your friends and we'll all go into town.
In the summer time when the weather is high
You can chase right up and touch the sky,
When the weather's fine
You got women, you got women on your mind.
Have a drink, have a drive
Go out and see what you can find.

If her Daddy's rich, take her out for a meal,
If her Daddy's poor, just do what you feel.
Scoot along the lake, do a town an' then return her twenty five.
When the sun goes down
You can make it, make it good and really fine.

With a fat beat, when her Daddy with a me,
We'll have everybody, but we do as we please.
When the weather's fine, we go fishing or go swimming in the sea,
We're always happy,
Long's we're living in this sound philosophy.

Sing along with us, dee dee dee dee dee
Da da da da da, yeah we're hap-pap-py.
Da da da dee da doo dee da dee da dee da da,
Da da da da da, dee da da dee da da.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Proud Mary

Proud Mary

Left a good job in the city,
Work in' for The Man ev'ry night and day,
And I never lost one minute of sleepin',
Worryin' 'bout the way things might have been.

Big wheel keep on turnin',
Proud Mary keep on bumin',
Rollin', rollin', rollin' on the river.

Cleaned a lot ofpiates in Memphis,
Pumped a lot of pain down in New Orleans,
But I never saw the good side of the city,
Til I hitched a ride on a river boat queen.

Rollin', rollin', rollin' on the river.

If you come down to the river,
Bet you gonna find some people who live.
You don't have to worry 'cause you have no money,
People on the river are happy to give.

Rollin', rollin', rollin' on the river.
Rollin', rollin', rollin' on the river.
Rollin', rollin', rollin' on the river.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The House Of The Rising Sun

Eric Burdon & the Animals

There is a house in New Orleans
They call the Rising Sun
And it's been the ruin of many a poor boy
And God I know I'm one

My mother was a tailor
Sewed my new blue jeans
My father was gamblin' man
Down in New Orleans

Now the only thing a gambler needs
Is a suitcase and a trunk
And the only time he'll be satisfied
Is when he's all a-drunk

Oh mother, tell your children

Not to do what I have done
Spend your lives in sin and misery
In the house of the Rising Sun

Well I've got one foot on the platform
The other foot on the train
I'm going back to New Orleans
To wear that ball and chain

Well there is a house in New Orleans
They call the Rising Sun
And it's been the ruin of many a poor boy
And God I know I'm one

Monday, June 18, 2007

Buster Bars

Dustin came to town from Las Vegas to attend a wedding. Michael put together a quick party so Dustin could visit with friends. Joan made this new dessert. It was a big hit with all.


1 package Oreo cookies
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream
2 cups peanuts

Crush Oreos. Mix with butter. Put in 9xl3-inch pan. Spread ice cream over crust. Put peanuts over ice cream, then the Fudge Sauce. Freeze until firm.


1 can Eagle Brand Condensed Milk
2 cups chocolate chips

Microwave until melted. Cool slightly and put on Buster Bars.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Sloppy Joes

What to make for supper. Joan had a pound of hamburg in the freezer. So she prepared this old favorite.

Perfectly simple—takes about 15 minutes from start to finish!

1 pound ground beef
1 tablespoon sugar
1 onion chopped
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons vinegar
3 tablespoons barbecue sauce
1 tablespoon flour
Dash Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup ketchup
Salt and pepper to taste

Brown beef and onion. Stir in other ingredients. Simmer for 5 minutes.
Serve on toasted buns.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Sweet Potato Salad

This salad is a yummy mix of flavors.

A peculiar day. Started off at 63° at 7 AM. Quickly climbed into 80°s by noon. Then a brief shower. A period of sunshine. Then a hailstorm. A return to sunshine. Plans for barbecued chicken could proceed. Joan made this dish to enhance the meal. Our neighbor, Susan, earlier in the day brought us some fiddlesticks. These added some zest to our dinner. The fiddlesticks tasted like a cross between an asparagus and a bean. Joan simply steaming them.

2 Ibs. sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
3/4 t. salt, divided
1/2 c. onion, diced
1/3 c. green pepper, diced
3 T. brown sugar, packed
1 T. dried parsley
1/4 c. plus 1 T. white vinegar
1 T. oil
1 t. hot pepper sauce
1 t. mustard
3 slices bacon, crisply cooked and crumbled

Arrange sweet potatoes in an even layer on a baking sheet lightly sprayed with non-stick vegetable spray. Sprinkle potatoes with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes, or just until tender; let cool slightly. Stir together remaining ingredients except bacon until blended. Add potatoes and toss gently to coat: sprinkle with bacon. Serve warm or chilled.

Serves 6 to 8.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Giant Stuffed Hamburger

Wanting to charcoal something different recalled this Better Homes & Gardens recipe from June 1972. One problem we had misplaced our grill basket. Thanks to the omnipresent Wal-Mart and eight dollars and sixty-nine cents were in business. (Had pleasant visit with Aunt Dorothea and Bob and Nancy in the book section at Wal-Mart.)

2 tablespoons of butter
1 1/4 cup herb seasoned stuffing mix crushed (3/4 c)
1 beaten egg
1 3 oz. can chopped mushrooms (1/2 c)
1/3 cup beef broth
1/4 cup sliced green onion
1/4 cup chopped almonds, toasted
1/4 cup snipped parsley
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 lbs. ground beef
1 teaspoon salt

In saucepan melt butter, remove from heat. Add stuffing mix, egg, mushrooms. broth, onion, almonds, parsley, and lemon juice. Mix well and set aside.

Combine beef and salt, divide meat in half. On sheets of waxed paper, pat each half to an 8" circle. (Rolling pin helps here)

Spoon stuffing over one circle of meat to within 1" of edge. Top with second circle of meat. Peel off top sheet of paper and seal edges. Invert meat patty onto a well-greased grill basket. Peel off remaining paper.

Grill over medium coals about 10-12 minutes on each side or until done.

Cut into wedges and serve with warm catsup.

6 servings.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Chicken Fajita Chowder

Heather called to inform us that they had 6 inches of new snow last evening. Joan thinking warm prepared this soup. While its preparation took her a bit of time, this savory soup was well worth it. Served with cornbread.

3 T. all-purpose flour

1 4-oz. pkg. fajita or taco seasoning mix, divided

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed

3 T. oil

1 onion, chopped

1 t. garlic, minced

15 1/4 oz. can sweet corn & diced peppers, drained

15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed

14 1/2 oz. can Mexican-style stewed tomatoes

4 1/2 oz. can chopped green chiles

3 c. water

1 c. instant brown rice, uncooked

Optional: dried cilantro to taste
10 3/4 oz. can nacho cheese soup

Garnish: sour cream, shredded, Cheddar cheese, chopped, green onions, crushed tortilla chips

Combine flour and 2 tablespoons seasoning mix in a large plastic zipping bag; add chicken. Seal bag and shake to coat. Sauté chicken in oil in a large Dutch oven over high heat, stirring often, about 5 minutes or until golden. Reduce heat to medium-high. Add onion and garlic; sauté for 5 minutes. Stir in remaining seasoning mix and all ingredients except soup and garnish. Bring to a boil: reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Add soup; stir until heated through. Garnish as desired.

Makes 8 to 10 servings.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Frittata with Vegetables

For Easter brunch Joan offered up a new dish that she found in a newspaper flyer ad for Sorrento Ricotta Cheese. Fresh Wegmans pre-sliced mushrooms provided a flavor boost and texture. This tasty frittata will certainly make a return appearance at the dining room table.

1 cup Sorrento Part Skim Ricotta Cheese

8 oz. Sorrento Mozzarella Cheese, sliced

12 large eggs

2 Tbsp. olive oil, divided

1 onion, diced

1 red pepper, diced

1 zucchini, thinly sliced

2 cups sliced mushrooms

1/4 cup dry white wine

Salt and black pepper to taste

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400°. Grease a 13” x 9” pan with 1 Tbsp. olive oil. In large flying pan, heat 2 Tbsp-.olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and red pepper and cook for 5 minutes until onions ore soft and slightly browned. Add zucchini, mushrooms and wine and sauté until zucchini is soft and wine has evaporated. Add soil and pepper. Whisk eggs, add ricotta and whisk together until smooth. Stir in vegetables. Pour frittata into pan. Top with sliced mozzarella and sprinkle with parmesan. Bake for 20 minutes, or until set. Serve immediately.

Michael’s Hash Brown Casserole

For our Easter brunch Joan served one of Michael’s favorite side dishes, Hash Brown Casserole. Usually Joan prepares this recipe the day before and bakes it off just before serving.

2 - 10 3/4 oz. cans condensed cream of potato soup, undiluted

1 C. (8 oz.) sour cream

1/2 tsp. reg. salt or garlic salt

1 pkg. (2 Ibs.) frozen hash brown potatoes

2 C. (8 oz.) Cheddar cheese, shredded

1/2 C. Parmesan cheese (opt.)

Mix all together. Pour into a greased 13x9'' baking dish. Top with Parmesan cheese. Bake uncovered at 350° for 50 to 60 minutes or until tender. Can make ahead and just reheat.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

Hollandaise Sauce

Joan created this tangy hollandaise sauce for our Pre-Easter dinner. While Joan drizzled it over asparagus, it would compliment other spring vegetables such as sugar snap peas or broccoli. While traditional hollandaise is high in calories and labor-intensive, this version is very tasty and ready in just five minutes.

1/2 cup Light Mayonnaise

1/2 cup plain nonfat yogurt

1 tsp. yellow mustard

1 tsp. lemon juice

Mix all ingredients in saucepan.

Cook on low heat 5 min. or until heated through, stirring constantly.

Serve over hot steamed fresh fresh spring veggies.

Makes 1 cup or 8 servings, 2 Tbsp. each.

Jazz it up: Serve sauce over vegetables as directed, then garnish with chopped fresh parsley or finely chopped red peppers.

Friday, April 6, 2007

Baked Macaroni and Cheese

Brian and Heather arrived on this Good Friday for the Easter holiday. Emily also joined us for dinner. Along with the traditional pierogi and kielbasa, Joan prepared macaroni and cheese. This classic dish is favorite of the boys.

2 Tbsp corn starch
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp dry mustard (optional)
1/4 tsp pepper
2 1/2 cups milk
2 Tbsp margarine or butter
2 cups (18 oz) shredded American or Cheddar cheese, divided
8 oz elbow macaroni (about 1 3/4 cups), cooked 7 minutes and drained

1. In medium saucepan combine first 4 ingredients; stir in milk. Add margarine; stirring constantly, bring to a boil over medium-high heat and boil 1 minute. Remove from heat.

2. Stir in 1 3/4 cups cheese until melted. Add elbows. Pour into greased 2-quart casserole. Sprinkle with reserved cheese.

3. Bake uncovered in 375°F oven 25 minutes or until lightly browned.

Makes 4 to 6 Servings

Prep Time: 12 minutes

Bake Time: 25 minutes

Additional suggestion:
Baked Ham N’ Cheese Macaroni: In step 2, stir in 1 cup diced ham with elbows.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Super Easy Fish Skillet

Mediterranean flavors "pop" in this classic Spanish fish dish made simple. Joan chose Tilapia fillets as the fish. While Joan was served this dish with yams, rice or pasta would make a fine side.

Prep: 5 min. Total: 20 min.

1/2 red onion, chopped

2 Tbsp. Sun-Dried Tomato Vinaigrette Dressing

1 can (14 1/2 oz.) stewed tomatoes, undrained

1 green pepper, chopped

1/2 cup black olives

1 lb. frozen fish fillets, such as haddock, halibut or cod, thawed

Cook onion in dressing in large skillet until tender.
Add tomatoes, pepper and olives.

Top with fish: cover. Simmer gently on medium heat
8 to 10 min. or until fish flakes easily with fork.

Makes 4 servings.

For a flavor boost add garlic and red pepper flakes to the sauce.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Pesto Lasagna Rolls

Is there anyone on earth who doesn't like lasagna? Besides Garfield, I mean. Here is an alternative to traditional lasagna. A lighter, brighter and more interesting version - the lasagna roll.

Originally an old Sunset magazine recipe. The lasagna rolls were baked in whipping cream enriched with a jolt of pesto. Joan borrowed the preparation style, but added some spinach to increase the nutrients, cut way back on the cheese and used tomato sauce instead of whipping cream to cover the rolls.

12 lasagna noodles
1 jar (26 ounces) pasta sauce
or 3 cups homemade
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 container (15 ounces) ricotta cheese
1 package (10 ounces) frozen chopped spinach
thawed, squeezed dry
1 jar (3'/2 ounces) prepared pesto
1 egg
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper
1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions; drain.

Heat oven to 350°. Spread 2 cups of the tomato sauce in bottom of a greased 13-by-9-inch pan. Combine garlic, ricotta, spinach, pesto, egg, Parmesan, salt and pepper to taste in a bowl. Place a lasagna noodle on a clean kitchen towel; spread 1/4 cup of the ricotta mixture on the noodle. Roll noodle up; place seam-side down in pan. Repeat with remaining noodles. Pour remaining tomato sauce over noodles; sprinkle with mozzarella. Cover with foil; bake 20 minutes. Uncover; cook until cheese is golden brown, 10-15 minutes.

Makes 6 servings.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


While Spring will officially be sprung at 8:07 this evening, the outside temperature has not realize it yet. So there is still time to serve a family favorite. This recipe is from the kitchen of Mildred Council, known as Mama Dip to her family, friends and customers.

Serve with masked potatoes — a must! But a baked potato will fit the bill. Aunt Dorothea's sweet pepper jelly sauce makes for a splendid topping.

2 pounds of ground beef
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup milk
1 cup bread crumbs
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup ketchup
l tablespoon prepared mustard
1 teaspoon seasoned salt

Mix all the ingredients together; place the mixture in a loaf pan or shape into a loaf and place in a baking pan. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes or until firm when pressed in the center.

Serves 8.

As fate would have it wouldn't you know that thanks to Steve Parton Michael got a job checking IDs at the Meatloaf concert at the Onondaga War Memorial in Syracuse On Thursday evening of March 22nd.

Mark Bialczak’s review of the Meatloaf concert.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Hamburger Soup

Since it is snowing again, and Brad and Michael are traveling to Syracuse to work on Rusty’s project, and Joan is going to her Seymour Library book club, Hamburger Soup seems to be just the right item for the supper menu. Easy to prepare and warms the body.

1 pound of ground beef
5 cups of water
1 6 oz. can of tomatoes
2 medium onions, chopped (1 cup)
2 medium carrots, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1/3 cup pearl barley
1 package beef bouillon (1 tablespoon)
2 teaspoons seasoned salt
1 teaspoon dried crushed basil
1 bay leaf (optional)
salt and white pepper to taste
1/4 cup ketchup

1. In a large pan brown the ground beef. Stir slightly to breakup large pieces. Drain off the excess fat.

2. Add the water, undrained tomatoes, carrots, onions, celery, barley, bouillon, seasoned salt, basil, ketchup and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for one hour or until the vegetables are tender.

3. Season with salt and pepper and remove the bay leaf.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Stuffed Chicken Breasts

Joan purchased a Deni Meat Tenderizer from QVC. With this kitchen aid in hand, she tenderized the chicken breasts before making this meal.

2 boneless, skinless whole chicken breasts (4 chicken breast halves)
l/3 cup goat cheese
1/2 cup roasted red pepper strips from a jar,drained
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup chopped fresh or frozen spinach
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons lemon olive oil (or any extra virgin olive oil)
Salt and pepper (optional)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wash and dry chicken breasts well. Tenderized chicken breasts. Lay each whole chicken breast half on its own large sheet of nonstick foil or foil coated with canola cooking spray. Spread half the goat cheese over half of each whole chicken breast. Top the goat cheese with roasted red pepper strips.

Blend parsley, spinach, garlic and olive oil in a small food processor or electric mixer. Add salt and pepper to taste if desired. Use 1/4 of the mixture on each chicken breast to top red pepper strips, then fold the breasts over to create the stuffed chicken breasts. Divide remaining parsley mixture and use to top the four stuffed breasts. Completely
wrap each with the foil. Place the foil pouches on a 9-inch-square baking dish.

Bake for 45 minutes. Open the pouches to uncover the chicken breasts and broil, if desired, for about a minute or two to lightly brown the top.

Makes 4 petite servings.

After dining on the stuffed chicken breasts, it was agreed that a white sauce might add to this entree.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Summer Dessert

Since the deep snow at Ross Place proved too much for Aunt Winnie's narrow skis, she decided to stay inside and send us this favorite family recipe. She noted the grandkids renamed it Pepto-Bismol.

1 8 oz. Cool Whip or heavy cream
1 pt. (2 cups) softened sherbet
1 cup boiling water
1 lg. Jello or 2 sm. (to match sherbet)
1 cup sliced mushrooms

Dissolve Jello in boiling water add softened sherbet, fold in Cool Whip. May use electric beater after dissolving Jello. Place in frig. Do not cover. Can be made previous nite.

Curried Fruit

After gazing at the mountainous snow banks on Ross Place, Aunt Winnie decided to stay inside and send us this favorite family recipe.

1 1/2 tsp. curry powder
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup oleo or butter (1 stix)
1 1/2 cup zucchini, sliced 1/4" thick
1 cup sliced mushrooms

Melt and pour over drained canned fruit - 9 by 13 pan

1 lg. can each
- pears (sliced)
- peaches (sliced)
- pineapple chunks

1 sm. can mandarin oranges
1 sm. jar cherries

May refrigerate overnite.

Bake in oven 325° for 1 hour.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Baked Beef Stew

Although not as cold as last week, this is still a winter day here. Michael and I went to Bibben's and purchased parts and oil for the sleds. Using a borrowed snow rake, I cleared the roof of the reading room. John, our UPS courier, brought Joan a new cast iron pot so she decided to warms us with this chunky oven-baked stew.

1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
3/4 cup water
1/4 red wine or beef broth
3 tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca
2 teaspoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons seasoned salt
1 teaspoon browning sauce, optional
1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 pounds lean beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes
5 small red potatoes, quartered
4 medium carrots, cut into 1-inch chunks
2 celery ribs, cut into 3/4-inch chunks
1 medium onion, cut into chunks
1/2 cup soft bread crumbs
1 cup frozen peas, thawed

In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes, water, wine or broth, tapioca, sugar, seasoned salt, browning sauce if desired, marjoram and pepper. Let stand for 15 minutes. Add the meat, potatoes, carrots, celery, onion and bread crumbs.

Pour into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dish. Cover and bake at 375° for 1-1/4 hours. Uncover; stir in peas. Bake 15-20 minutes longer or until meat and vegetables are tender.

Yield: 6-8 servings.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Chicken Festiva

Another frigid day. Thermometer never broke over 14°. Joan purchased fresh zucchini at Wegmans and prepared this dish. Not only is it a quickie, but it is just what your taste buds need on a bitter cold day.

2 Tbsp. butter
2 chicken breasts, cut into pieces
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cup zucchini, sliced 1/4" thick
1 cup sliced mushrooms

1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
1 (16 oz) can stewed tomatoes
1 1/2 tsp. oregano
12 tsp. lemon pepper
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper

In a large skillet, melt butter and sauté chicken pieces until lightly
browned. Add garlic, zucchini, mushrooms and sauté until crisp and
render. Stir in tomato sauce, stewed tomatoes and seasonings.
Simmer 10 minutes until flavor is blended.

Serves 8 to 10.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Tortellini Spinach Soup

Happy Valentine's Day. Last evening a Northeast wind dumped 12 inches of snow on Perrine Street . The front porch thermometer read 11° at 6 AM. Snowplowing started off on the wrong foot. We got stuck in our driveway. This was the first of three stoppages during the course of the day. After paying a visit to Lori, Joan returned home to prepare this soup in her new red cast iron Dutch oven. Needless to say after Dave Eichorn announced the final snowfall total for the day in Auburn to be 18 inches, there were plenty of smiles beaming above the piping hot soup bowls at 88.

1 tablespoon olive oil or oil
1 cup thinly sliced carrots
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 garlic clove, minced, or 1/2 teaspoon chopped garlic in oil
3 (14 1/2 oz.) cans ready-to-serve chicken broth
1 (9-oz. pkg.) refrigerated cheese-filled tortellini
2 cups frozen cut leaf spinach (from 16-oz. pkg.)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
2 oz. (1/2 cup) shredded mozzarella cheese

Heat oil in large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add carrots, onion and garlic; cook and stir until onion is tender. Add broth; bring to a boil. Add tortellini; boil gently 4 to 5 minutes or until tortellini is almost tender. Add spinach and oregano; simmer 2 to 3 minutes or until spinach is tender, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle each serving with cheese.

4 (1/2-cup) servings.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Chili Made Easy

Early this morning after eating breakfast at the Sawmill the boys phoned . Since the snow cover was great they made the decision to stay and ride for another day. Late afternoon after leaving Camp Michael and entering a reception zone they cell phoned to say they were heading home. It's time like this Chili Made Easy comes to the rescue.

Everyone has their favorite chili recipe. But when you want chili now. Do yourself a favor. Go to the nearest all-purpose pharmacy or the corner bodega or Wegmans and pick up a package of McCormick's Original Chili Seasoning Mix.

1 pkg. McCormick Seasoning Mix
1b. lean ground beef
2 cans (8 oz, each) tomato sauce OR
1 can (14 1/'2 oz.) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can (15 to 16 oz.) kidney or pinto beans, undrained

Assorted Toppings: Shredded Cheese, Chopped Onions or Sour Cream


Brown meat in large skillet on medium-high heat. Drain.

Stir in Seasoning Mix, tomato sauce and beans.
Bring to boil; cover.
Reduce heat ana simmer 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Serve with toppings, if desired.

Friday, February 9, 2007

Poppy Seed Bread

The boys were on the way to Camp Michael. The proprietor of the Sawmill has been very good to them. Joan wanted to reward her graciousness. Joan sent 3 loves of poppy seed bread.

4 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup oil
1 package instant lemon pudding
1/4 cup poppy seeds
1 cup boiling water
1 box yellow cake mix

Grease and flour 2 medium or 3 small bread pans. In a medium bowl combine the eggs, oil, pudding, and poppy seeds, beating until well blended. Slowly add the boiling water alternately with the cake mix. Beat the mixture until smooth. Pour into the prepared pans. Bake in a 350° oven for 45 to 50 minutes.

Makes 2 medium or 3 small loves.

Thursday, February 8, 2007

Creamy Chicken Vegetable Soup

A travel advisory and whiteout conditions have kept Emily in Oswego. The temperature remains in the low teens on Perrine Street. Joan decided soup was the order of the day for lunch. Using her new cast iron pot, she made Creamy Chicken Vegetable Soup.

Creamy Chicken Vegetable Soup

2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cups water
2 medium potatoes, peeled, diced
2 (10-ounce) packages frozen mixed vegetables
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed
1/3 cup dry white wine
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
1 (lO 3/4-ounce) can cream of chicken soup, undiluted
5 drops hot sauce
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup evaporated skim milk

Melt butter in large saucepan; add onion and garlic. Cook, stirring constantly, until tender. Add remaining ingredients, except milk. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in milk and heat through. Yields 2 quarts.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Easy as A, B, Seafood Bisque

Heavy lake effect snows have been confined to southwest Oswego County. The heaviest snow (where it was falling at 2 to 4” per hour) was in a band from the city of Oswego to near Central Square. Parts of Oswego County have already seen 3 to 4 feet since yesterday.

Albeit of the lake effect snow, Perrine Street has felt the effects of the wind chill. Again this morning the temperate was in single digits.

The weather has prompted Joan to prepare one of our favorite soups for lunch, Easy as A, B, Seafood Bisque.

Easy as A, B, Seafood Bisque

A big bowl of this soup is so good on chilly days.

6-oz. can crabmeat, drained
10-oz. pkg. imitation lobster, flaked
6-oz. can tiny shrimp, drained
1/2 c. butter plus 3 T. butter
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
14-oz. can chicken broth
Optional: 1/2 c. white wine
1 T. tomato paste
3 c. half-and-half
1/2 c. flour
salt and pepper to taste
Garnish: fresh chives, chopped

Combine crabmeat, lobster and shrimp in a bowl; set aside. Melt 3 tablespoons butter in a large Dutch oven and sauté onion, carrot and celery for about 3 minutes. Add chicken broth, seafood and wine, if using. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer. Stir in tomato paste and half-and-half. Melt remaining butter and blend with flour in a small bowl: stir into soup. Add salt and pepper to taste. Simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally, for 40 minutes.

Garnish with chives.

Serves 4 to 6.

Sunday, February 4, 2007

Avocado Mango Salsa

This dip was submitted by Jeanne Ryan, Cazenovia, NY, to Margaret McCormick, food editor of The Post-Standard, for inclusion in her Super Bowl column.

In the photo, Margaret, on the left, and Jeanne.

Avocado Mango Salsa

1 mango, peeled, seeded, and diced

1/2 chopped fresh cilantro

1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and diced

1/8 teaspoon minced garlic

4 medium tomatoes, seeded and diced

1 teaspoon salt

1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced

2 tablespoons lime juice

1/4 cup chopped red onion

2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil

In a medium bowl, combine the mango, avocado, tomatoes, jalapeno, cilantro and garlic. Stir in salt, lime juice, red onion and olive oil. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to blend the flavors. Serve with Tostitos Scoops.

Note: The recipe is also great on baked or grilled fish, especially grouper.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Always-a-Hit Pizza Dip

Margaret McCormick, Post-Standard food editor, asks Joan to share her dips for a Super Bowl column. Photos were taken in the newspaper studio in Syracuse. Al Campanie was the photographer.

In the photo, Margaret and Al are noshing after the photo shoot.

Always-a-Hit Pizza Dip

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened

1 (8-ounce) container of sour cream
(may use light or reduced-fat)

1 tablespoon garlic powder

1 (14- to 16- ounce) jar or can pizza sauce

1 1/2 cups mixture of shredded mozzarella
and Cheddar cheese

Pepperoni slices

Tortilla chips or Italian bread

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, sour cream, and garlic powder. Mix into a paste. Line bottom of baking dish with cream cheese mixture. Smooth pizza sauce over all. Layer cheeses on top of pizza sauce. Place slices of pepperoni on top of cheese, being sure to cover entire baking surface as pepperoni will shrink during baking. Bake uncovered for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Serve hot with tortilla chips or Italian bread.

Serves 4-6.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Broccoli Wild Rice Soup

While Brad, our painter, was finishing the windows and sills in the Bistro Room, Joan prepared this ready in 30 minutes or less soup.

1 package (6 ounces) chicken and wild rice mix
5 cups water
1 package (10 ounces) frozen chopped broccoli, thawed
1 medium carrot, shredded
2 teaspoons dried minced onion
1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, cubed
1/4 cup slivered almonds, optional

In a large saucepan, combine rice, contents of seasoning packet and water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring once. Stir in the broccoli, carrot and onion. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in soup and cream cheese. Cook and stir until cheese is melted. Stir in almonds if desired.

Yield: 8 servings (about 2 quarts)

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Hearty Beef Minestrone

Last evening, we charbroiled two London Broil steaks. There were leftovers. As recommended by the United States Department of Agriculture the cooked meat was wrapped and stored in the refrigerator.

Before supper, Joan diced about 3 or 4 slices of the reserved beef and use it in this soup.

1 cup tiny pasta, such as macaroni, shells or alphabets
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 onions, chopped
2 carrots, diced
2 celery ribs, including leaves, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 zucchini, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) ready-to-use chicken broth
1 can (16 to 19 ounces) red kidney or cannellini beans, undrained
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 cup diced roast beef (reserved from yesterday)
Grated Parmesan cheese

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions, carrots, celery and garlic. Cook about 8 minutes, or until soft. stirring often. Add zucchini, chicken broth, beans and tomatoes. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered 10 minutes. Stir in diced beef and reserved pasta. Simmer 2 minutes, or until heated through. (Do not overcook the beef or it will become tough.) Serve the minestrone with a generous sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.

Menu Roundout: A loaf of crusty bread is all you need to make a full meal from this soup.

Makes 4 servings

Monday, January 22, 2007

Chicken Pot Pie Casserole

Recall as a kid the Swanson Chicken Pot Pie you were served in their aluminum container and thinking they were the best thing in the world. Know what’s taste better - one made from scratch in your own kitchen.

1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 package (16 ounces) frozen mixed vegetables, thawed
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) ready-to-use chicken broth
1 can (10 3/4 ounces) condensed cream of chicken and broccoli soup
2 cups biscuit baking mix
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a large bowl, combine the chicken chunks, mixed vegetables, chicken broth, and soups; mix well. Spoon into a 9" x 13" baking dish that has been coated with nonstick cooking spray. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk the biscuit baking mix, milk, and butter until smooth and spoon over the top of the chicken mixture. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until no pink remains in the chicken and the topping is golden.

Note: This can also be made in small round casserole dishes for individual pot pies if you are nostalgic for the good old Swanson days.