Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Creamy Corn Chowder

There is something about comforting about soup on a cold day. This is a good recipe, but I'm going to change it a bit. I don't have all the ingredients tonight, but it will still be good.
I'm going to use smoky ham instead of bacon, no carrots,  and no onion, so I'll add some celery and chives, and I;m going to mix cream corn and frozen corn kernels.  so this will be more a like a meal.

Corn Chowder


1 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 strip of bacon or 1 teaspoon of bacon fat (substitute 1/2 Tbsp of butter for vegetarian option)
1/2 large yellow onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
1/2 large carrot, chopped (about 1/3 cup)
1/2 celery stalk, chopped (about 1/3 cup)
3 ears of sweet corn, kernels removed from the cobs (about 2 cups), cobs reserved (see steps for taking corn off the cob)
1 bay leaf
3 1/2 cups milk, whole or low fat
1 medium Yukon Gold potato, or Russet, peeled and diced
1/4 red bell pepper, chopped (about 1/4 cup)
Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves


1 In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the bacon strip (skip this step for vegetarian option, just add more butter) and fry until the bacon renders its fat, but doesn't begin to brown, 3 or 4 minutes. Add the onion and saute for 4 to 5 minutes, until soft. Add the carrot and celery and cook for 4 or 5 more minutes.

2 Break the corn cobs in half and add them to the saucepan. Add the milk and bay leaf. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to a bare simmer. Cover the pot and cook for 30 minutes. Make sure the heat is as low as can be and still maintain a gentle simmer (on our stove we had to use the "warm" setting) to prevent scalding the milk on the bottom of the pan.

3 Discard the cobs, the bacon strip, and the bay leaf. Raise the heat, add the potatoes, red pepper, 1 teaspoon of salt, fresh ground pepper to taste, bring to a simmer and reduce the heat to maintain a simmer for 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are almost fork tender.

4 Raise the heat, add the corn kernels and the thyme. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer for 5 minutes.

Serves 4.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Lemon Cream Pie


1 pie crust, unbaked
4 large eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice (from about 4 lemons)
1/4 teaspoon salt


1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin (from a 1/4-ounce envelope)
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup sugar


1.Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line crust with aluminum foil; leave an overhang and fold over edge. Fill crust with dried beans, pie weights, or uncooked rice. Place crust on a baking sheet; bake until set and lightly golden, about 20 minutes. Remove foil (and beans). Bake without foil, 5 to 10 minutes more; if crust bubbles up, press down gently. Cool.

2.Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk eggs, sugar, sour cream, and salt; gradually whisk in lemon juice. Pour mixture into crust. Place on a baking sheet; bake until barely set (center of pie will still wiggle slightly), 25 to 35 minutes. Cool completely.

3.Make topping: Place 2 tablespoons cold water in a small saucepan, and sprinkle with gelatin; let soften about 5 minutes. Heat mixture over very low heat, stirring, until gelatin dissolves. Let cool.

4.In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat cream and sugar until very soft peaks form. While beating, slowly add gelatin mixture, and continue beating until soft peaks form. Using a rubber spatula, spread over cooled pie. Refrigerate until ready to serve, at least 1 hour or, loosely covered, up to 1 day.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Cream of Asparagus Soup

As it gets cold, I always think of making big pots of soup. I like asparagus; it seems classy somehow...

2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
2 cups milk
3/4 pound fresh asparagus
boiling water
salt and pepper -- to taste


Make the white sauce: Melt butter in a saucepan over low heat. Blend in flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Stir until smooth. Add milk; cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and begins to bubble.

Set aside.

Wash asparagus and cut in 1/2-inch pieces. Cook asparagus in a small amount of boiling water until tender, about 5 minutes. Drain, reserving the cooking liquid. Set aside a few of the asparagus tips or pieces aside for garnish, if desired. Mash or blend remaining asparagus; set aside. Add enough boiling water to cooking liquid to make 1 cup; add white sauce and pureed asparagus. Heat thoroughly; season to taste with salt and pepper. Add whole asparagus pieces and serve.

Serves 4 to 6.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Chicken Tetrazzini

what you need

1/2 lb. spaghetti, uncooked
1 lb.  boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
red pepper, chopped
2 cups  sliced fresh mushrooms
4 oz. (1/2 of 8-oz. pkg.) PHILADELPHIA Neufchatel Cheese, cubed
1/4 cup  flour
1 can (14 oz.) fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth
3 Tbsp.  KRAFT Grated Parmesan Cheese, divided
1/2 cup KRAFT 2% Milk Shredded Mozzarella Cheese

make it

HEAT oven to 350°F.
COOK spaghetti in large saucepan as directed on package. Meanwhile, cook chicken and vegetables in large nonstick skillet 5 min. or until chicken is no longer pink. Remove from skillet; cover to keep warm.
BRING Neufchatel, flour and broth to boil in same skillet, stirring constantly with whisk; simmer on medium-low heat 5 min., stirring frequently.
DRAIN spaghetti; return to saucepan. Add Neufchatel sauce, chicken mixture and 2 Tbsp. Parmesan; mix well. Spoon into 2-qt. casserole; cover.
BAKE 25 min. Top with mozzarella and remaining Parmesan; bake, uncovered, 2 min. or until mozzarella is melted

Friday, November 25, 2011

Easy Pork in Chive & Onion Sauce

when you get tired of the turkey left overs try this  

pork tenderloin (1 lb.)
1 pouch  SHAKE 'N BAKE Original Pork Seasoned Coating Mix
3 cups whole wheat egg noodles, uncooked
1/2 lb.  fresh asparagus spears
2 tsp. canola oil
1 cup  sliced fresh mushrooms
1/2 cup (1/2 of 8 oz. tub) PHILADELPHIA Chive & Onion 1/3 Less Fat than Cream Cheese
3/4 cup  fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth

make it

HEAT oven to 400°F.
COAT meat with coating mix; place in shallow foil-lined pan. Bake 30 min. or until done (160ºF), cooking noodles in unsalted water as directed on package for the last 15 min. of the meat baking time.
MEANWHILE, steam asparagus 6 min. or until crisp-tender. While asparagus is cooking, heat oil in medium skillet on medium-high heat. Add mushrooms; cook 5 min., stirring occasionally. Add cream cheese spread and broth; cook 2 min. or until cream cheese is melted and sauce is well blended, stirring frequently.
DRAIN noodles and asparagus. Slice meat. Top noodles with meat, then sauce. Serve with asparagus.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Swiss Turkey Bake

what you need

6 cups French bread cubes (1/2 inch), divided
1-1/2 cups  KRAFT Shredded Swiss Cheese, divided
1-1/2 cups chopped cooked  turkey
3/4 cup  chopped red pepper
2 cups  milk
1/4 cup GREY POUPON Country Dijon Mustard

make it

LAYER 3 cups of the bread cubes, 1 cup of the cheese, turkey and the red pepper in greased 2-quart oblong baking dish; top with remaining 3 cups bread cubes.
BEAT eggs, milk and mustard with wire whisk until well blended; pour over bread layer, being careful to evenly moisten the bread. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup cheese; cover. Refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight.
PREHEAT oven to 325°F. Bake, uncovered, 45 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Let stand 10 minutes before 

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Cranberry Relish

2 bags cranberries

2 cups sugar

2 cups water

1/4 cup orange juice

1/2 tsp orange rind - grated

Combine all ingredients in a large sauce pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 5 minutes or until berry skins pop. Chill and enjoy!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Buttermilk Mashed Potatoes


  • 2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup chicken or vegetable broth
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper


  • In a large saucepan, combine the potatoes, water, broth and garlic. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 12-15 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
  • Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, heat buttermilk until warm. Drain potatoes and garlic; mash with buttermilk. Stir in the onions, salt and pepper. Yield: 6 servings.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Hot Rolls

No feast would be complete without good hot yeast rolls. My Great- Grandmother Myers could bake rolls that made you cry they were so good.

anyway these are also good. Don't forget the butter.


  • 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
  • 2 cups warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 6 to 6-1/2 cups all-purpose flour


  • In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the sugar, egg, oil, salt and 4 cups flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a firm dough.
  • Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Punch dough down; turn onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into four portions. Shape each portion into 12 balls. To form knots, roll each ball into an 8-in. rope; tie into a knot. Tuck ends under. Place rolls 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes.
  • Bake at 350° for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool. Yield: 4 dozen

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Roast Turkey

This is easy. Don't be afraid of the bird. 

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. 
Pull the neck and giblets out of the cavity; ditch the liver and save the rest of the neck and giblets for gravy. 
Dry the turkey with paper towels, then season inside and out with salt and pepper. Fill the turkey with aromatics like chopped onions, celery,  carrots, apples and herbs, then place breast-side up in a roasting pan and brush with melted butter. Tent with foil and roast for 2 hours (for a 10- to 12-pound turkey; add an extra 15 minutes per pound for larger birds). 
Remove the foil, baste with more melted butter and crank the oven to 425 degrees F. Roast for another hour or until the meat at the thigh registers 165 degrees F. Let rest while you make the gravy.

Friday, November 18, 2011

"Jack" Pumpkin Pie

2 9-inch rich pastry shells [I've always had good luck making a crust with half sweet butter, half shortening; but he gives a recipe with egg as well.

2 cups mashed pumpkin (canned is "ideal")
6 eggs
2 cups heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoons ground cloves
1/2 cup finely cut preserved or candied ginger
1/4 teaspoon mace
2 oz Jack Daniels whiskey

Fill pie shells with foil and beans and bake at 425 degrees for 12 minutes. Remove foil and beans.

Place pumpkin in a bowl and make a well in center. Add lightly beaten eggs combined with the heavy cream, seasonings and ginger. Right before baking at the whiskey. Blend thoroughly. Correct the seasoning -- you may want a spicier pie. Pour into the partially baked pie shells and bake at 375 degrees till the custard is just set.

Let the pies rest. Just before serving Top with fresh whipped cream.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Cornbread Stuffing

Some folks insist on cornbread stuffing... It is good and it is a southern tradition. So here's a goodie

This sturdy corn bread works well in stuffing.

Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 2 and store in a plastic bag in the freezer for up to 1 month. Thaw before continuing.


2 cups cornmeal, preferably stone-ground
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 cups skim or low-fat milk
2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
2 cups chopped onions (2 medium)
2 cups chopped celery (4 large stalks)
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 1/2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
Freshly ground pepper to taste

 Preheat oven to 375°F. Coat an 8-inch square baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

Combine cornmeal, flour, baking powder and 2 teaspoons salt in a large bowl and mix well. Whisk together egg, milk and 1 1/2 tablespoon oil in another large bowl; add to the dry ingredients and stir just until evenly moistened. Turn the batter into the prepared baking dish and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pan on a rack. Cut into 1-inch cubes.

Heat the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and celery and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and add the cubed corn bread and parsley; toss to mix. Slowly add broth, tossing until the corn bread is well moistened. Season with salt and pepper.

Recipe reprinted by permission of © EatingWell Magazine. All rights reserved.

Date Added: 01/01/2008

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Everything goes Better with Gravy

What is the one thing you don't like doing for holiday meals? other than the dishes? For me it's making the gravy. It all ways comes out lumpy, runny thin.... ug. So, i decided to turn to me friend the Internet to see how to really make gravy, because after all mashed potatoes and stuffing wouldn't be special without the gravy. Here are two, one is traditional, and one is very easy.

First Tradition:


1 1/4 pounds giblets and neck from turkey
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped celery
1 pinch ground white pepper, or to taste
2 (1.2 ounce) packages dry turkey gravy mix
3 (14.5 ounce) cans chicken broth, or more as needed
1 3/4 cups turkey drippings
1/4 cup quick-mixing flour (such as Wondra®)
1/2 cup milk (optional)


1.Remove the wrapping, and place the giblets and turkey neck into a large saucepan with onion, celery, white pepper, and turkey gravy mix. Pour the chicken broth over the mixture, bring to a simmer over medium-low heat, and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove the turkey liver and set aside. Allow the stock to simmer for 2 1/2 more hours. Stock should equal about 3 cups; add more chicken broth if necessary. Remove the giblets and chop them if you want to put them back into the gravy. Chop the liver if desired. Strain the stock into a saucepan; discard bones and spent vegetables.

2.When the turkey is finished roasting, pour the drippings into a fat separator or bowl, and skim off the fat. In a bowl, whisk the quick-mixing flour with the pan drippings until smooth, then whisk the flour mixture into the stock. Bring the gravy mixture to a simmer over medium heat, whisking constantly, and add the chopped giblets, if desired.

Second easy:

1/4 cup all-purpose flour, or more if needed
1/4 cup turkey drippings
2 cups water
2 chicken bouillon cubes


1.In a skillet over medium heat, whisk the flour with turkey drippings until smooth, then reduce heat to low and cook, stirring frequently, until dark brown, about 10 minutes. Stir in the water and bouillon cubes, and simmer until the cubes have dissolved and the gravy is thickened and smooth, about 10 minutes.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Cranberry Apple Salad

And... how about something diffrent with dinner? In stead of cranberry relish.. Serve a small salad. After Thanksgiving this would also be good with some leftover turkey on it.

4 cups mixed greens

1 large honey crisp apple, sliced thin
1/2 crushed walnuts
½ cup dried cranberries
2 oz cheddar cheese crumbles

1 large navel orange, juiced
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon honey
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Sourdough Bread Stuffing

Thanksgiving: OK,  not one of my favorite holidays... but there are some great recipes out there, and a person gets to show off in the kitchen.

When I was little we always had turkey, stuffing, peas, mashed potatoes, hot yeasty rolls, sweet potatoes, cranberry relish,  and a choice of pie... mincemeat, pumpkim and pecan. (I was really glad when we stopped having mincemeat.)

There was always way to much food and football.  When I got older, we girls would go to the movies after the dishes were done and leave  the footballers to argue over who was going to win.

By the way,  the stuffing was always cornbread based. When I got older, and started to discover new tastes, I discovered sourdough bread stuffing... OMG... it was so good. ,it was hard to go back to cornbread.

This particular stuffing had a ton of butter, ribbons of slices onion and celery, and the aroma of  a dry Riesling, becauce that is that the turkey was basted with.

Well, I found this little gem the Food Network. don't you just love the cooking shows at the holidays?



1-pound loaf sourdough bread
8 tablespoons butter
10 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced 1/2-inch thick in both directions
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 to 4 stalks celery with leaves, halved lengthwise and sliced
1 medium onion, chopped
About 10 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves stripped from the stems
10 to 12 fresh sage leaves, chopped
3 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
3 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley leaves


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 2-quart baking dish and set aside.

Cut or tear the bread into 1-inch cubes and spread it evenly on 2 baking sheets. Toast the bread in the oven until completely dry and beginning to crisp and brown, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.

Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and a few pinches of salt and saute, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 6 to 8 minutes. Add celery, onion, 2 tablespoons butter, and thyme. Once the butter has melted, cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables have softened, about 5 minutes. Add sage and remaining 4 tablespoons butter. Add chicken broth to skillet and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Transfer toasted bread cubes to a large bowl. Pour the chicken broth mixture over the bread cubes and toss to combine until the bread cubes absorb the liquid. Pour the mixture into the greased baking dish, and sprinkle with parsley. Bake in the center of the oven until heated through and the top is golden brown, about 40 minutes. Remove the stuffing from the oven and allow to cool about 15 minutes before serving.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Sopapilla Cheesecake

This is an office party favorite. 


2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon Mexican vanilla extract
2 (8 ounce) cans refrigerated crescent rolls
3/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/4 cup honey


1.Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Prepare a 9x13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.

2.Beat the cream cheese with 1 cup of sugar and the vanilla extract in a bowl until smooth.

3.Unroll the cans of crescent roll dough, and use a rolling pin to shape each piece into 9x13 inch rectangles. Press one piece into the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Evenly spread the cream cheese mixture into the baking dish, then cover with the remaining piece of crescent dough. Stir together 3/4 cup of sugar, cinnamon, and butter. Dot the mixture over the top of the cheesecake.

4.Bake in the preheated oven until the crescent dough has puffed and turned golden brown, about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and drizzle with honey. Cool completely in the pan before cutting into 12 squares.

Gluten free Gnocchi

Once upon a time in Santa Rosa, CA at my one of my favorite little eatery’s, (Mary's Pizzza), I discovered something so tasty, so good...