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Sep 4, 2009

Vine Ripe Spaghetti Sauce

1,5 kg (3 lb) ripe tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 tsp parsley
few celery leaves
20 g (0.7 oz) butter
100 g (3.5 oz) butter
100 g (3.5 oz) flour
beef broth
3-4 Tbs red wine
30 g (1 oz) sugar
lemon juice


1.Sauté onions in butter with parsley and celery. Add tomatoes and cook until done. Remove from heat, let cool. Puree the sauce.
2.FOR ROUX: Melt butter, add flour and whisk in low heat. Add broth and wine and cook until thickend. Add pureed tomatoes, sugar and salt. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes. Add lemon juice.


Cheese and Orange Marmalade Sandwiches

1/2 cup cream cheese

1/2 cup cream

1/2 cup orange mamalade
Spread half the slices of buttered bread with the cheese, softened with the cream. Spread the other slices with orange mamalade. Press the slices together.

Cheese and Banana Sandwiches

1 cup cream cheese

1/4 cup cream

2 bananas

1/4 cup mayonnaise
Mash the bananas and mix with the cream cheese. Add the cream and mayonnaise and spread on slices of white bread.

Salmon Sandwiches

1 cup canned salmon, drained and bones removed

1/4 cup mayonnaise

salt and pepper to taste

Fresh dill sprigs and lettuce

Bread of your choice
Mix the salmon and mayonnaise until it is creamed. Spread on the bread slices and top with a small sprig of fresh dill and a fresh lettuce piece. Note: This basic recipe can be used for tuna or the small canned shrimp that have been chopped finely. You can also substitute watercress, argula or add very thin slices of cucumber or radish.

Radish Tea Sandwiches

1 cup minced radishes

1 tsp. poppy seeds

1 cup cream cheese, softened

6 slices homemade or homestyle bread

3/4 tsp. salt

24 leaves of young argula, spinach or raddichio
Combine the minced radishes, poppy seeds, cheese and salt. Blend well. Cover 3 slices of the bread with the radish mixture-about 1/4 " thick. Top with the lettuce leaves and another slice of bread. Cut each sandwich into small squares or triangles with a sharp serrated knife. You can vary this by adding VERY thin slices of cucumber on top of the cheese, and Bibb lettuce. For a crunchy treat use Romaine. You may have left over radish mixture depending on the size of your bread.

Pear and Walnut Tea Sandwiches

8 ozs. cream cheese, softened

4 ozs. blue cheese, crumbled

1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts

2 (16-oz.) cans pear slices, drained

8 ozs. thinly sliced ham

Your choice of bread: mini bagels, mini croissants or slices of homemade sweet bread, such as Sally Lunn or Oatmeal.
In small bowl, combine cream cheese, blue cheese and walnuts; mix well. Spread cheese filling on bottom half of the bread you chose, followed by a layer each of ham slices and pear slices. Top sandwiches with remaining halves. If you are using regular size bread, use a sharp knife to cut into quarters. Note: You can slice canned pears yourself OR use fresh pears as well

Cucumber Shrimp Tea Sandwiches

1/3 cup minced green onions

1/4 cup soft cream cheese, room temperature

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup plain low-fat yogurt

2 tsp. fresh minced dill

1/4 tsp. garlic powder

1/4 tsp. black pepper

6 thinly sliced slices of homestyle white bread

1 1/2 pounds medium shrimp, cooked and peeled

1 cup thinly sliced cucumber

1/2 cup thinly sliced radishes

6 lettuce leaves
Combine first 7 ingredients in a bowl. Cut rolls in half horizontally. Spread the cream cheese mixture on three slices of bread. On the other three slices add the shrimp, then arrange the cucumber and radishes evenly on top. Next add one lettuce leaf to each slice, then top with the slices that were covered with the cheese mixture. Press down lightly and cut into triangles with a serrated knife. If necessary you can place a decorative toothpick in each triangle. Notes: Use your favorite type of lettuce. You can also buy small salad shrimp and diced them up into the cheese mixture instead of using the bigger ones.

Cucumber and Nasturtium Sandwiches

2 medium sized cucumbers

8 thin sliced brown bread

4 nasturtium leaves


onion juice or powder
Peel, half, seed and finely chop the cucumbers. Place in a bowl and add a dash or two of the onion juice or powder and enough mayonnaise to make it spreadable. Butter the slices of bread, and for each sandwich spread on enough cucumber mixture to cover lightly. Lay a leaf on top of each piece of bread and top with another one. Trim the crust. Makes 4 sandwiches. Note-you could substitute any nice lettuce or watercress for the nasturtium. Also when you place these on a platter or each plate be sure to garnish with a nasturtium bloom!


A Summer Tea Menu

Near the end of the summer, when it's just starting to cool off, is a lovely time to give a small tea party with family and friends. Pick a bouquet from your flower gardens for your centerpiece. If you have a vegetable garden, send some of your harvest home with your guests along with a small bouquet. The cherry recipes use dried cherries, but if you have fresh cherries in your area be sure to place some in a pretty bowl for guests.

Herbed Quiche Appetizer

10 eggs
2 cups cottage cheese
1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
1 pound Swiss cheese, grated
1 can sliced mushrooms (8 oz.)
1/2 cup butter -- melted
1 tablespoon minced herbs---oregano, parsley, minced
garlic, basil, chives, chervil, etc.
salt and pepper to season

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In large bowl, beat eggs, cottage cheese, flour, baking powder and seasoned salt. Stir in cheese, mushrooms, butter, salt, pepper and the herbs. Pour into a 13 x 9 x 2 inch glass baking dish. Bake uncovered 15 minutes at 400 degrees . Reduce heat to 350 degrees and continue baking for 35-40 minutes. Cut into bite-size squares. Serve hot or cold.

Mini Onion Tarts

1 1/2 cup butter cracker crumbs
1/3 cups butter
2 cup chopped sweet onion
3/4 cup milk
2 eggs
3/4 tsp. salt
3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 tsp. sweet paprika
1 tsp. minced fresh parsley

Combine crumbs and two-thirds of the butter in a bowl and mix well. Press the mixture on the bottom and up the sides of mini muffin tins. Heat remaining butter in a skillet, over medium heat, add onions and sauté for 10-12 minutes, until tender and just beginning to caramelize. Divide onions among muffin cups. Now combine milk, eggs, and salt and whisk well. Pour over the onions into muffin cups. Divide the grated cheese between muffin cups and sprinkle with paprika. Bake at 350 degrees, until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from oven and gently remove from muffin tin. Garnish with minced parsley and serve warm.

Cherry Scones

1/3 cup dried cherries
1/2 cup boiling water
1 1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 tablespoon baking powder
1/3 cup Half and Half -- plus 1 tablespoon
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1 egg, separated
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon almond extract

Soak cherries in hot water for 10 minutes and then drain and set aside. Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Using a pastry blender, cut in the butter until mixture it resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside. In a small bowl, mix together the egg yolk, sour cream, cream and extract. Add the sour cream mixture to the flour mixture and stir until a soft dough forms. Mix in the cherries and then knead the dough lightly on a floured surface just until dough can be handled. Shape dough into a ball and pat into a 6-inch circle on a greased baking sheet. Cut into six wedges and brush with beaten egg white and then sprinkle with sugar. Bake at 400 degrees F. for 15 to 20 minutes.

Cherry Cheese Spread

1 cup dried cherries
1 cup water
2- 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon lemon zest

In a small heavy pan simmer the dried cherries in water until water is reduced to about a tablespoon. Remove pan from the heat and cool. In a medium sized bowl, beat the remaining ingredients together with the cherries and water once they have cooled. Serve with scones or crackers.

Cherry Tea

6 cups water
1/4 cup maraschino cherry juice
4 tea bags---black or green tea
1 teaspoon lemon juice

Boil the water, remove from heat and add the tea bags. Brew for 5 minutes. Pour into a teapot with the juices. Serve in cups warm, or over ice. This is easily doubled.

Homemade Bread--Easy as Pie!

You will need:


1 large mixing bowl

1 large spoon

1 tablespoon measure

1 large mug or glass for proving the yeast

Greased baking pans


5-lb bag of all purpose or bread flour

1 tablespoon salt

1 tablespoon granulated sugar

1-tablespoon vegetable shortening; lard or bacon grease

1 cup of cold milk

3 cups of boiling water

1 package of dry yeast


In a large mug or glass, pour about four fluid ounces of almost hot water-not too hot; it will kill the yeast. Add a small pinch of sugar and the package of yeast; stir and set aside to "work."

In a large mixing bowl place the salt, sugar and shortening. Add three cups of boiling water and stir until dissolved. Add the milk; stir.

Check the yeast; it should be bubbly and almost to the top of the glass. Add to the milk mixture in the large mixing bowl and stir well to distribute the yeast evenly.

Add flour a cup at a time, and stir well after each addition. When dough becomes too difficult to stir with the spoon, start balling it up with your hands. Add enough flour to keep your hands from sticking to the dough-don't over flour-it will make the bread hard! Keep the dough the consistency of a marshmallow. You won't need to use the whole bag of flour!

Then I knead this dough within the bowl (it will still come out perfectly!). Knead the dough until it is smooth and soft-about seven minutes. The sides of the bowl should be clean. You will know the dough is ready for the first raising, when you can poke your finger into it, and the hole springs back at you.

Grease the dough all over with a used margarine wrapper; place in original bowl and cover with a paper towel. Set in a warm place near the woodstove or in an airing cupboard-a temperature of 85 degrees is ideal.

When the dough has doubled its bulk-punch down and knead again but don't add more flour. Divide dough into balls, for rolls; long "sausages," for a braid and place in greased baking pans or place formed dough into loaf pans. You can even roll some out to make a pizza, at this stage!

Cover again with paper towels and set in a warm place for the second raising.

When raised, bake in a 400-degree oven for about twenty minutes, until golden brown. The bread will be done, when it makes a, "hollow" sound, when tapped on the bottom of the loaf with your knuckles.

On removing from the oven, grease all sides of the bread crust with butter, margarine or shortening. Leave to cool on a rack-if you can wait that long!

Baking Powder Biscuits

(from a 1933 Recipe)


2 cups sifted flour
2 tsp. baking powder
4 tablespoons butter or shortening
1/2 tsp. salt
about 3/4 cup milk

Sift Flour once, measure, add baking powder and salt, and sift again. Cut in shortening or butter. (this is where I use my hands by rubbing the butter into the flour). Add milk gradually, stirring until soft dough is formed. Turn out on slightly floured board and lightly "knead" for 30 seconds, enough to shape. Roll 1/2 inch thick and cut with 2 inch floured biscuit cutter. Bake on ungreased sheet in a 400 degree oven for 12-15 minutes. Makes 12 biscuits. You can also make tiny tea biscuits that are only 1 1/2 inches wide with a small cutter or glass bottom. These are great served with tea, jam or honey. Makes 24.

Thyme and Cheese Biscuits

2 cups flour
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. fresh minced thyme
1/2 tsp. minced fresh parsley
1/2 tsp. minced fresh rosemary
1/2 cup cheddar cheese
5 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup milk
Preheat over to 400 degrees. Grease a cookie sheet and set aside. Mix flour, baking powder, herbs and cheese in a large mixing bowl, using a fork. Cut in the butter. Mixture will be crumbly. Add the milk and stir until dough holds together, you may add more milk if necessary. Drop by large spoonfuls on the cookie sheet an inch apart. Bake 10-12 minutes.

Pecan Biscuits

2 1/2 cups biscuit baking mix
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons melted butter or margarine
Preheat over to 450 degrees. In a large bowl, combine baking mix and pecans. Add cream and stir until a soft dough forms. On a lightly floured surface, use a floured rolling pin to roll out dough to 1/2 inch thickness. Use a floured 2-inch biscuit cutter to cut out dough. Place on greased baking sheet and brush tops with butter. Bake 7-10 minutes or until light brown.

Almond Biscuits with Berry Butter

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup toasted sliced almonds
2 tablespoons honey
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in medium bowl. Using a pastry blender cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Combine milk, almonds and honey. Add to butter mixture, mixing just until flour is moistened. Knead dough gently; shape into a ball. Roll out or pat down dough on a lightly floured surface to 3/4 inch thickness. Using a floured 3 inch heart shaped cutter, cut out the dough, rerolling as needed. Place about 1 inch apart on unbuttered baking sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes or until golden. Serve warm with Berry Butter.

To make butter:

Place 1 stick softened butter, cut into pieces, 1/3 cup strawberry preserves and 1/4 cup sliced fresh strawberries in work bowl of food processor; process until smooth. Or, you may stir together by hand. Transfer to covered container; refrigerate until ready to use.

Yogurt Herb Biscuits

2 cups buttermilk baking mix
2/3 cup plain yogurt or sour cream
2 tablespoons snipped parsley
1 tablespoon snipped chives
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Mix all ingredients until soft dough forms; beat an extra 20 strokes. Smooth dough into a ball on a surface dusted with baking mix. Knead 5 times. Roll dough 1/2 inch thick. Cut with floured 2 inch cutter. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake until golden brown; 8-10 minutes. Makes 10-12 biscuits.