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Tzimmes

Behind, as usual, I’m finally getting this post on here. You can thank a friend who recently visited and wanted the recipe. So here goes.

Tzimmes:

  • 1c chopped onion
  • 2lb sweet potatoes
  • 3/4c chopped dates
  • 1 1/2t cinnamon
  • 1/2t salt
  • 3 large carrots, sliced
  • 1 large apple or pear, chopped
  • 1/2c orange juice
  • 1/2t ginger
  • 1/2c walnuts or pecans, chopped

Peel and chop the sweet potatoes and boil until tender. Saute the onions and carrots and then mix everything together. Bake at 350 for 40-50 minutes. Bear in mind, if the dish is shallow, you will bake for a shorter amount of time. Most tzimmes recipes have prunes in them. If you want to add prunes to yours, feel free, but I suggest you schedule an appointment with your therapist immediately afterwards.

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(I do apologize for the picture. I thought I had pictures of when I made it, but apparently I was wrong. So I got this picture off of another site.)

 

The Best Sweet Potato Casserole Ever

I was recently at a carry in Thanksgiving meal, and the oddest thing happened. I went to the table and saw at least three different sweet potato casseroles, but not mine. My son and I wanted mine. I asked where it was. Someone had taken a big ole bite out of it and set it on the table behind them. I was hurt at first, and then I was told why.

Apparently they thought it looked so good that they had to try it. Once they tried it, they thought it tasted so good that they didn’t want it gone before they got to eat (they being the servers). When they finally got to eat themselves, they nearly cleaned my dish out and then came over to tell me, “Best sweet potato casserole ever.”

I am one of those cooks that doesn’t like to give away really good recipes. It’s a power trip thing. It makes me feel good to know that there’s something out there that I’m better at than at least one other person. Yes, it’s childish; yes, it’s wrong; yes, I’m working on it-hence this post.

I actually got this recipe from my aunt, so that made it a family one, so I had an excuse. But she said she got it from a friend, and that it wasn’t very different from others she had tried. So, I decided to start with this one as far as giving out certain recipes that I hold dear. But I will probably go to my grave with others. Some have been in the family for generations and aren’t going anywhere. Here it is:

mix:
3c mashed sweet potatoes
2 eggs
1/2c butter (you can use less)
1c sugar
1t vanilla
1/2c milk
(I often add more potato and less sugar. Experiment to find your mixture, but I would not cut below 3/4c sugar the first time. I used half once, it wasn’t very good)

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mix topping:
1c brown sugar
1c pecans
1/3c butter (do not use less)
1/2c flour

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Blob (yes blob. It is the technical term) the topping on the other stuff (another technical term) as best you can and bake at 350 for 30 minutes. If you make it ahead of time and stick it in the fridge overnight before baking, bake for a little longer, like 5 or so minutes.

Warning-this looks a whole lot worse than it is. It rode for over an hour in the car before it got cooked, so it was a bit of a mess. But it tasted good!

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7-Layer Salad

The first time I made this was last week.  And then I used croutons because I was out of turkey bacon.  It was great!

You will need:

  • 1 head iceberg lettuce
  • 6 boiled eggs
  • 1 15oz can peas (I used kidney beans, and it worked well)
  • mayo
  • salt.pepper
  • 3-4 chopped green onions
  • shredded cheese, preferably of the cheddar variety
  • 4 strips turkey bacon
  • a deep 9X13 casserole dish

seven layer salad

Chop up the lettuce and make a thin layer on the bottom of the dish.  Slice two of the eggs and place them on top.  Sprinkle 1/3 of the can of peas (or beans) on that.  Blob some mayo and try to smear it around as much as possible (good luck with that part).  Remember not to do too much because this is the first of three layers.  Sprinkle with onion, salt, pepper, and cheese.  Tear the bacon up and add 1/3 of that.

Now, start over.  You’re going to make 3 layers of this.  Chill and voila!

Quick and easy peach cobbler

I love a gourmet dish like anyone else, but this couldn’t be simpler.

You will need:

  • 1stick butter
  • 1c flour
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 1/2tsp salt
  • 2 – 15oz cans of peaches
  • nutmeg
  • cinnamon
  • 1 egg
  • 1c sugar
  • 9X13 dish

peach cobbler recipe

Melt the butter completely in the dish and swish it around until the sides are well greased.

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In a separate bowl, mix the flour, sugar, powder, and salt.  Add the egg and roughly mix.  Scatter over the melted butter.

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Drain one can of the peaches and scatter it over the top.  Then dump the entire other can, drizzling the juices from it all over the dish.  Sprinkle with nutmeg and cinnamon to taste.  I like a lot of it.

easy peach cobbler

Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

cobbler

Yummy!  Remember, cobbler is a quick easy.  You can’t mess it up, so don’t worry:)

peach cobbler

Simple, Hearty Soup (Cheap!)

We found these soups on sale At Krogers the other day.  We bought a bunch of different ones.  Some veg, some chicken, some beef, and some mixed.  The sirloin is the best.  The meat is edible, and it actually tastes good.  A lot of the chicken ones were too runny to use, so keep that in mind.  I probably spent $2 feeding everyone (three people) a filling meal.

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I use little 5” ramekins for baking single servings of casseroles.  It lets me make a casserole for one more cheaply without a bunch of leftovers.  This is great if it’s something only I like, or if I want to be all fancy like.  As you can see, here’s what it looks like.  That’s not spices on top, it’s soup or something.  Who knows what it is in my kitchen!

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Now, I divided the soup equally into three ramekins.  That may not be enough soup for some, but was the perfect amount for the biscuit topping.

The biscuit is made this way:

  • 4T butter
  • 2c flour
  • 2t baking powder
  • 1/2t salt
  • 3/4c milk

Mix the unmelted butter and flour together until crumbly.  The butter should be completely mixed.  I use my hand, it goes quickly and easily that way.  Add baking powder and salt, mix well.  Add milk and stir until combined.  Divide into three and glop the dough onto the top of each soup filled ramekin.

Don’t let the dough be too thick, or it won’t cook all the way through.  Dividing into 2 servings instead of three is almost too much biscuit, and almost too much for the ramekin,.

Bake at 400F for 20 minutes.  Serve on plates because that ramekin is HOT!

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I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do!

Vegetable Mess

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This is one of those recipes that is completely up to the chef and family as to what they like.  For example, in this written version, there are carrots.  My husband hates carrots, but replace them with 1 green pepper, and you have a winner for him.  You can also change the cheese to be any type of variety that your family likes, what you have on hand, or what you think will compliment it better.  I used Mexican blend because it is what I had on hand.  Feel free to experiment and enjoy new and different combinations!

  • 2c flour
  • 1t baking powder
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 good sized yellow (summer) squash
  • 1 good sized zucchini
  • 3 carrots
  • 1/2c red onion
  • 1c corn
  • 1c spaghetti sauce
  • chopped garlic
  • milk
  • corn oil
  • shredded Mexican cheese blend

Helpful NOTES:  The red onions were NOT hot in this recipe.  Leftovers tasted good or even better, possibly due to mingling in the fridge.  Of course, salt, pepper, and garlic are all to taste-we like garlic, so if you do not, you might want to try reducing our amount.  I used frozen zucchini, so fresh is not required and does really well.  If you’re one of those that really needs precision and exact measurements of everything, I’m really, really sorry.

Start by chopping up all the veg.  (My carrots did really well this year-yay!!)

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Saute in oil, adding salt and pepper and 1t chopped garlic.  Cook and stir until your desired doneness.  Add the spaghetti sauce and heat through.

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While that’s cooking, mix the flour with the baking powder and 1/2t salt.  Add enough milk to make a sticky dough.  Heat enough oil in a pan and add a 1/2t of garlic.  Spread it around and plop in some dough, flattening it with the spatula.  Think of this as a vegetarian yorkshire pudding.  You want it about an inch thick.  It’s going on the bottom and will absorb veggie juice-delish!  Those dark specks are garlic…yum!

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I had to cook three different pieces of the dough in order to make the right sizes and such.  Flip and fry the other side too.  It doesn’t have to be completely done, just mostly.  It’s getting baked later.  Place these pieces in the bottom of your dish to form a single layer.  You want a taller dish with a thicker bottom layer of bread.

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Dump in the veggie mix

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Place the cheese on top and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

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Raspberry Cup Pies

Raspberries are in season and I wound up with a bunch in one day.

raspberries

Recently indulging in watching Pushing Daisies, we remembered Chuck’s creation of pies made in a muffin tin.  I don’t remember what she called them, but we call them “cup pies.”  So, I made raspberry cup pies.

  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 1/3c whole wheat flour
  • 3 T water
  • raspberries
  • sugar
  • muffin tin

Crumble the butter and flour together until completely mixed, tiny crumbs form.  Add enough water to make a dough that you can handle.  Sprinkle sugar on the table and roll the dough on the sugar like you would flour.  Roll out and place thin dough in the muffin pan.  I use paper cups.  Fill with raspberries and pour a spoonful of sugar on top of each one.   Bear in mind the berries will shrink down, and the sugar will mix in on its own.  (also bear in mind how old and used my pan is-sorry)

cup pie

Bake at 425 for 20 minutes.  Enjoy!

mini raspberry pie

Crème Brulee Recipe

My husband took up cooking for a short while.  One of his creations was crème brulee.  this is how he made it, and it is very popular!

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Main dish:

  • 3 eggs
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1/2c sugar
  • 1 1/3c heavy cream
  • 1 1/3c milk
  • 1t vanilla
  • ramekins

Fluff together the eggs and yolks.  Mix the sugar, cream and milk together in a sauce pan.  Stir while it heats up until fully dissolved.  Add vanilla and let cool for 5 minutes.

Add this mixture to the eggs a slow, small amount at first, tempering the eggs as needed.  Whisk together and pour into the ramekins.

Put the ramekins in a dish and fill the dish with water up to halfway or so up the ramekins.  Bake at 275 for 1 hour.  Carefully remove and refrigerate for 2 hours or more, preferably overnight.

Caramel topping:

  • 1c sugar
  • 1/c water
  • 1 stick butter
  • 2/3c heavy cream
  • 1/4c milk

Using medium heat, mix all the ingredients together, stirring often.  As it starts to darken, be careful, removing from the heat as necessary and being careful to not let it stick too much on the bottom.  Once it’s brown to your satisfaction, remove completely from the heat and mix well.  Can be reheated once stored in the fridge.

Scalloped Eggs

This is an excellent way to eliminate all those eggs your chickens leave you with.  If you have more eggs than you can handle (like us), use this recipe in a 9X13 dish.  If you don’t have chickens, you can half this recipe in a smaller, square dish.

You will need:

  • 12 hard boiled eggs
  • melted butter
  • bread crumbs, crushed croutons, or Panko, whatever you desire
  • salt/pepper
  • milk or cream (cream is best, but milk is still good)

Butter the bottom and sides of the dish liberally

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Put a layer of crumbs on the bottom.

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Slice the eggs and put half of them as a layer on the crumbs.  Salt and pepper.  Drizzle with melted butter.

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Layer with more crumbs, the other half of the eggs, and salt/pepper.  Top with more crumbs.  Drizzle with melted butter or dot with cold butter.

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Pour just enough milk or cream in the corners to cover the bottom of the dish.

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Bake at 375 for 20-30 minutes.  You’ll want it heated through with brown crumbs on top.

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Leftovers can be microwaved, but heating in the oven is preferable.

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