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R-C staff members share holiday recipes with readers

Staff reports

In keeping with a Record-Courier tradition, we asked people on the R-C staff to bring in their favorite recipes to share with our readers.

Most are holiday-oriented, though not all are, and “Kathy’s Beef Stew” would make a good meal for the cook on the run.

Chocolate Mint Bars

by Linda Hiller

3-layer mint brownie

2 eggs

1 cup sugar

2 squares unsweetened chocolate

1/2 cup butter (melt with the chocolate)

1/4 teaspoon mint extract

1/2 cup flour

Beat eggs, add sugar and beat. Add melted chocolate and butter, then mint and flour. Pour into greased square brownie pan and bake at 350 for 25 minutes.

Frosting:

2 tablespoons butter

1 cup powdered sugar

1 tablespoon cream or milk

3/4 teaspoon mint extract

Mix together until smooth and frost cooled brownies. For Christmas, I color the frosting with either red or green food coloring, or you can pull a Martha Stewart and color half red and half green and do a checkerboard pattern!

Top with:

1 tablespoon butter

1 square unsweetened chocolate

Melt together and pour over frosted brownies, tipping pan to spread chocolate evenly. Chill.

Pecan Chocolate Squares

Crust:

1/2 cup softened butter

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 cup flour

Mix and pat into greased rectangular cake pan. Bake at 375 for 10-15 minutes, or until light brown.

Top with:

2 eggs

1 cup brown sugar

1 tablespoon flour

pinch salt

6 ounces chocolate chips (around one cup – can use butterscotch or other flavor chips here)

1 cup pecans

1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix well and pour over baked crust, spread evenly, bake at 375 for 20 minutes. Cool.

Christmas Cheese Ball

(Mom’s recipe)

4 ounces cheddar cheese, grated

16 ounces cream cheese

4 ounces blue cheese

1 tablespoon onion

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Small can chopped olives

Mix all together, preferably at room temperature. Could add a few pimentos and chopped green stuff (green pepper, cilantro, etc.) to make more “Christmas-sy”). Roll in chopped nuts, if desired.

Belinda’s Best Pumpkin Pie

by Belinda Grant

2 cups pumpkin

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

2 tablespoons molasses

1-1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

3/4 teaspoon ground ginger or 2-3/4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

3/4 teaspoon salt

3 eggs, separated

1 can evaporated milk

Splash of brandy

2 teaspoons cornstarch

Beat 3 egg yolks, add sugars, molasses and spices and brandy. In separate bowl, mix pumpkin with evaporated milk. Beat egg whites until stiff. Sprinkle in cornstarch while beating. Mix with pumpkin mixture, then mix all together and pour into pie shells. Bake in preheated, 450-degree oven for 10 minutes, then reduce to 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes.

Cheese Logs

by Kay Oetting

1 8-ounce package cream cheese

8-ounces Velvetta cheese

3 to 4 tablespoons garlic powder (to taste)

Soften cream cheese and Velveeta cheese in microwave and then mix them together with the garlic powder. When cheese mixture cools and hardens somewhat, form into balls or logs. Roll in paprika. Wrap in Saran or foil. Freeze. Thaw in about 20 minutes. Serve with crackers. Will keep frozen for months.

Peanut butter blossom cookies

by Christy Chalmers

1-3/4 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup butter

1/3 cup creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

Hershey’s kisses or equivalent

Mix flour, soda and salt. Set aside.

Cream butter, peanut butter and sugar; add egg and vanilla. After beating egg in, blend in dry ingredients.

Roll dough into 1 to1-1/2 inch balls. Roll in sugar. Bake on ungreased cookie sheet for 7 minutes at 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Cookies will begin to crack.

Remove from oven; press unwrapped kisses into center of each cookie. Return to oven 3 minutes. Chocolate should be shimmery and soft, but not melted.

Makes 24 cookies, depending on size.

Kathy’s Beef Stew

by Kathleen Martin

This dish is sits at home and cooks itself while you’re out Christmas shopping – or skiing.

2-3 pounds previously cooked beef (I use leftovers like London broil, etc.)

1 onion (sliced or diced)

2-3 carrots (sliced)

3 stalks celery (finely chopped)

6 potatoes (peeled and cut in 1/2-inch pieces)

1 can Italian tomatoes (diced)

Beef bullion

Lemon pepper

Salt

3-4 tablespoons cornstarch

Kitchen Bouquet

Start with 5 cups of beef bullion and add the beef. Simmer overnight in a slow cooker. Add potatoes and onion the next day. Keep cooking on low overnight. Add the remaining vegetables and seasonings. When all is thoroughly cooked, add the cornstarch to thicken and 1 teaspoon Kitchen Bouquet to restore color. Serves a bunch.

Wendell Jenness’s Candied Walnuts

8 cups walnuts

4 egg whites

Blend together.

1/3 cup cinnaomon

2/3 cup sugar

Mix together, add to walnut mixtured, stir. Spread on two cookie sheets and pace in a 350-dgree Fahrenheit oven for 20 minutes. Makes great gifts.

Butter Cashew Brittle

by Mary Leinginer

2 cups sugar

1 cup Karo syrup

1/2 cup water

1 cup buttter

3 cups cashews

1 teaspoon baking powder

Warm butter, sugar syrup and water to 280 degrees, then add 3 cups of cashews and heat to 300 degrees. Be careful not to burn yourself. Add 1 teaspoon of baking soda and put on a greased cookie sheet to cool and harden. Break into pieces when cold.

Scalloped Pineapple

by Barbara Gerber

8 cups white bread cut in 1/2-inch squares

1 20-ounce cans crushed pineapple

6 eggs, beaten

4 cups sugar

2 cups butter, melted

Toss together bread and pineapple. Place in a greased 9×13-inch baking dish. Comgine eggs, sugar and melted butter, pour over bread and pineapple mixture. Do not stir in. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 50 to 60 minutes until top is browned. (Can be made up and refrigerated overnight before baking.)