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Nov 29, 2009

Christmas Fragrance

Christmas Fragrance

2 c. water
1 Tbsp. whole cloves
3 cinnamon sticks
1 whole nutmeg or 1 tsp. ground nutmeg

Christmas Boil: To fill the house with the aroma of Christmas spices, brew a spicy mixture on the stove. Simmer all ingredients in a medium size pan. Add additional water and spices when needed.



16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter at cool room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg at room temperature
2 cups all purpose flour, bleached preferred
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup seedless raspberry jam or any smooth seedless jam
Confectioner's sugar for sifting

The cookies can be made and assembled a couple of days ahead of time and
stored in an airtight container. I do like the look of confectioner's sugar
sifted over the top of the cookies and that should be done just before
serving. DO NOT CUT OUT any of the cookies until you have found both sizes:
one for the cookies and a smaller one to cut out an opening in the tops. I
found that an apple corer works very well for this task -- you can quickly
stamp holes in dozens of tops.

Place the butter in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat on medium high
speed until pale and light, about 3 minutes. Add the sugar and beat until
light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add
the egg, and beat until combined, about 30 seconds.

Add the flour and salt and mix on very low speed until the dry ingredients
are moistened and a rough, crumbly dough is formed. Shape the dough into a
disc, wrap in plastic and refrigerate until firm but pliable, about 2 to 3
hours. (The dough can be made up to 2 days ahead but should be allowed to
sit out for about 20 minutes to become workable.)

Meanwhile, heat the oven to 350 degrees and adjust a rack to the center
position. Working with half the dough at a time, roll out on a floured
surface to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut out in desired shapes (be sure to have
both large and small cutters selected before you start) and transfer onto a
parchment-lined cookie sheet using a thin metal spatula. Using a very small
cutter, make a hole in the center of half of the dough shapes. The cutout
pieces will be used as the top half of the finished cookies, so be sure you
have an equal number of tops and bottoms.

Bake for about 10 minutes, rotating the cookie sheet 180 degrees half way
through the baking time, or until the cookies have taken on a very light
color around the edges. Cool completely on a rack. Repeat with remaining

Flip over the cookie bottoms (the pieces without cutouts) so that the baked
underside is facing up. Stir the jam well to make it looser and more
spreadable. Spread a thin layer of jam on each cookie bottom. Top with
cutout cookie top. Once filled, the cookies will keep well in an airtight
container for a couple of days. Just before serving, sift confectioner's
sugar over the top of the cookies.

Makes about 30 2-inch cookies



11/2 cups granulated sugar
2/3 cup Carnation Evaporated Milk
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups miniature marshmallows
1 1/2 cups (9 ounces) Nestle Toll House Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels
1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Method: Line 8-inch-square baking pan with foil. Combine sugar, evaporated
milk, butter and salt in medium, heavy-duty saucepan. Bring to a full
rolling boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Boil, stirring
constantly, for 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

Stir in marshmallows, morsels, nuts and vanilla extract. Stir vigorously for
1 minute or until marshmallows are melted. Pour into prepared baking pan;
refrigerate for 2 hours or until firm. Lift from pan; remove foil. Cut into
1-inch squares.

Makes 64 pieces

Butter Cookie Snowmen

Butter Cookie Snowmen

1 cup butter (no substitutes), softened cup sugar
1 tablespoon milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
Red and yellow paste food coloring
Miniature chocolate chips

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add milk and vanilla; mix well.
Gradually add flour. Remove cup of dough to a small bowl; tint with red food
coloring. Repeat with 1/3 cup of dough and yellow food coloring; set aside.

For snowmen, shape white dough into 24 balls, 1 inches each; 24 balls, about
1/2 inch each; and 24 balls, about 1/8 inch each. For bodies, place large
balls on two ungreased baking sheets; flatten to ~-inch thickness.
Place -inch balls above bodies for heads; flatten.

Shape red dough into 24 balls, 1/8 inch each, and 24 triangles. Place
triangles above heads for hats; attach 1/8-in. white balls for tassels.
Place red balls on heads for noses. Divide the yellow dough into 24 pieces;
shape into scarves and position on snowmen. Add chocolate chip eyes and
buttons. Bake at 325 degrees for 13 to 16 minutes or until set.

Cool for 2 minutes before carefully removing to wire racks.

Yield: 2 dozen.

Red And Green Cheddar Balls

Makes 24 small balls

1/2 pound cheddar, shredded (2 cups)
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, softened
2 tablespoons medium sherry or beer
Minced parsley

Combine cheese and butter, beat until smooth; gradually beat in sherry or
beer. Form into tiny balls. Roll half the balls in paprika and half in
parsley. Chill. Serve alone or on round crackers.

Cinnamon Sugar Snackers

Cinnamon Sugar Snackers

You'll think you're eating warm cinnamon and sugared doughnuts,
but they're biscuits, and they're baked, not fried!

Prep: 30 Min

2/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/3 cup margarine or butter, melted
1 (12-oz.) can Pillsbury® Golden Layers® Refrigerated Buttermilk

1. Heat oven to 400°F. Lightly grease cookie sheets.

2. In small shallow bowl, combine sugar and cinnamon; mix well.
Separate dough in 10 biscuits. Separate each biscuit into 3 to
4 layers. Dip each layer in melted margarine; coat both sides
with cinnamon sugar mixture. Place 1 inch apart on greased cookie

3. Bake at 400°F. for 6 to 8 minutes or until golden brown.
Serve warm.

Makes 30 to 40 snack chips

Homemade turkey soup.

Homemade turkey soup.
Layer the following ingredients in a glass jar

60 ml (1/4 cup) red lentils
30 ml (2 tbsp) dried onion
20 ml (1-1/2 tbsp) chicken-flavored bouillon granules
7 ml (1-1/2 tsp) dried dill weed
0.5 ml (1/8 tsp) ground celery
0.5 ml (1/8 tsp) garlic powder
1 small bay leaf
250 ml (1 cup) uncooked medium egg noodles.

Then, cover the lid with a round or square of fabric that is cut a bit
larger in diameter than the top of the jar and fasten with a ribbon and a
greeting and the following instructions:

Turkey Noodle Soup: 2 L (8 cups) water, 1 jar Turkey-Noodle Soup mix, 1 305g
package (10 oz.) frozen mixed vegetables, 500 ml (2 cups) cooked, diced
turkey or chicken.

Method: Bring water to boil in large saucepan over high heat; stir in soup
mix. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer 15 minutes. Discard bay
leaf. Stir in frozen mixed vegetables and cooked turkey. Cook 5 minutes
longer or until noodles and vegetables are tender.

Chocolate Chubbies

Chocolate Chubbies

8 squares (8 oz) semisweet chocolate
3 squares (3 oz) unsweetened chocolate
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups toasted walnuts, chopped
1 1/2 cups toasted pecans, chopped

Preheat oven to 325 F. Grease three cookie sheets. Melt chocolate with butter in double boiler over simmering water. Cool to room temperature. Beat eggs with sugar in mixer bowl until ribbon forms when beaters are lifted. Beat in chocolate mixture and vanilla. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl and stir into chocolate mixture just until combined. Do Not Overmix. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Drop batter by quarter-cupfuls 2 inches apart onto prepared cookie sheets. Do Not Flatten. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until barely firm and tops are just dry and slightly cracked. Cool on cookie sheets 2 minutes. Gently transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Yield: 25 cookies



1/2 pound sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
1/4 pound Roquefort or blue cheese
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 teaspoons grated onion
Cayenne pepper to taste
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 cup finely minced parsley
1 cup chopped pecans

Thoroughly mix all ingredients except parsley and pecans. Combine parsley
and pecans and blend half of them into cheese mixture. Spread remaining
parsley mixture on sheet of waxed paper. Form cheese into a ball and roll it
in parsley mixture until well coated. Chill before serving. Freezes well.

Holiday Green Beans and Bacon

Holiday Green Beans and Bacon
7 slices bacon
2 - 9-ounce packages frozen whole green beans, thawed
6 medium carrots, cut into 3- to 4-inch-long strips
2 tablespoons margarine or butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon pepper

In a large skillet cook bacon, uncovered, over medium heat for 8 to
10 minutes or until just crisp, turning occasionally. Remove bacon,
reserving 2 tablespoons drippings in skillet; drain bacon on paper

Add green beans, carrots, margarine or butter, and garlic to
reserved drippings in skillet. Stir-fry over medium-high heat about
5 minutes or until vegetables are crisp-tender.

Crumble bacon. Stir pepper into vegetable mixture. Remove from heat.
Transfer to a serving bowl. Top with crumbled bacon.



1 8-ounce bag chocolate kisses
1/2 cup solid shortening
3/4 cup creamy or crunchy peanut butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1 egg
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Granulated sugar

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Remove wrappers from kisses. Beat
shortening and peanut butter in large bowl until blended well. Add
1/3 cup granulated sugar and brown sugar; beat until fluffy.

Add egg, milk and vanilla; beat well. Stir together flour, baking
soda and salt. Gradually beat into peanut butter mixture.

Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll in granulated sugar and put on
ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in preheated oven 8-10 minutes or until
browned lightly.

Immediately press kiss into center of each cookie. (Cookie will crack
around edges.) Remove from cookie sheet to wire cooking rack and cool

Makes about 4 dozen cookies.



1/2 cups butter
1 1/4 teaspoons seasoned salt
4 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
2 cups Corn Chex
2 cups Rice Chex
2 cups Bran Chex
2 cups Wheat Chex
1 cup salted mixed nuts

Heat butter in large shallow roasting pan. Stir in seasoning; add Chex and
nuts. Mix until all pieces are coated. Heat 1 hour at 250 degrees. Stir
every 15 minutes. Makes 9 cups. May be frozen; thaw at room temperature in
container in which it was stored.


Makes 6 servings

You can't have leftovers without a pan of tetrazzini, but this version is
far better than so many gloppy renditions. For the rest of the year, it's
also great with leftover roasted or grilled chicken.

8 ounces spaghetti
5 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, chopped
1 celery rib, chopped
1/4 cup flour
1 cup turkey or chicken broth or stock
1 cup whole milk
1 bay leaf
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Pinch of cayenne pepper
2 cups cooked bite-size pieces of turkey
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until almost tender.
Drain. Toss with 1 tablespoon butter.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 2- to 3-quart casserole.

Melt remaining 4 tablespoons butter in a heavy large saucepan over medium
heat. Add onion and celery. Saute until tender, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle
with flour. Cook 2 minutes. Gradually stir in broth, then milk. Add bay
leaf, pepper and cayenne. Simmer until mixture thickens. Remove bay leaf.
Season with salt. Stir in turkey and pasta.

Pour mixture into prepared pan. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake until bubbly,
about 25 to 30 minutes.



2 dozen cooked beef and pork tamales, husks removed
3 1/2 cups Ro-Tel tomatoes with diced green chiles, with juice (28 ounces)
1 (16-ounce) package grated three-cheese blend (mozzarella, Cheddar and Jack
2 cups chopped onion
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dark chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 to 3 teaspoons kosher salt, or to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, crumble tamales by hand into bite-size pieces. Do not mix
in a mixer or a food processor, which makes the stuffing too dense. In
separate bowl, combine tomatoes and green chiles with juice, cheese, onion,
garlic, oregano, chili powder, cumin and salt. Add to tamales and toss.

Put in large greased baking pan or two (9-inch) ovenproof dishes and bake
20-30 minutes, or until brown and hot throughout.

2 dozen cooked beef and pork tamales, husks removed
3 1/2 cups Ro-Tel tomatoes with diced green chiles, with juice (28 ounces)
1 (16-ounce) package grated three-cheese blend (mozzarella, Cheddar and Jack
2 cups chopped onion
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dark chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 to 3 teaspoons kosher salt, or to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, crumble tamales by hand into bite-size pieces. Do not mix
in a mixer or a food processor, which makes the stuffing too dense. In
separate bowl, combine tomatoes and green chiles with juice, cheese, onion,
garlic, oregano, chili powder, cumin and salt. Add to tamales and toss.

Put in large greased baking pan or two (9-inch) ovenproof dishes and bake
20-30 minutes, or until brown and hot throughout.

Fruitcake Cookies

Fruitcake Cookies

3 cups chopped dried figs
2/3 cup raisins
2/3 cup candied cherries, chopped
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons dry sherry
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 pinch salt
2 1/2 cups chopped walnuts
1 cup unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup super fine sugar
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg

In a large bowl, combine fruits, honey, sherry, lemon juice, salt
and walnuts. Cover and marinate overnight.

Soften the butter or margarine to room temperature and cream
together with cloves, and white and dark sugars until smooth. Add egg
and mix well. Mix together the flour and salt and slowly add to
butter mixture. Do not overmix. Blend in the fruit and nut mixture.
Chill dough until stiff enough to handle. Lightly flour work surface
and divide dough into 2 equal portions. Roll into logs and cover.
Place dough in freezer for at least an hour.

Preheat oven to 350F. Cut logs into thin rounds and place on cookie
sheet. Leave 1 inch between slices. Bake 10 to 13 minutes or until
golden brown.

German Spice Cookies

German Spice Cookies

3 eggs
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp pepper
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped walnuts

In a large bowl, beat the eggs. Add the brown sugar, cloves, cinnamon, and the pepper. Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add to the egg mixture. Stir in the raisins and the walnuts. Drop by tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto lightly greased baking sheets. Bake at 400 F for 8-10 minutes or until the surface cracks. Remove to wire racks to cool. Makes 3 1/2 dozen cookies

Peppermint Stick Sauce

This is perfect for the holidays and also makes a delicious hostess gift.

1 1/2 cups finely crushed peppermint candies
1 1/2 cups whipping cream
1 (7 ounce) jar Marshmallow Creme

Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat until smooth
and candy is melted, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Remove from heat.
Pour into an airtight container and refrigerate.

Serve chilled over ice cream or pound cake.

Servings: 8

Honey Crunch Cookies

2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup honey
2 eggs
1 cup flaked coconut
1 cup butterscotch chips
4 cuprs rice cereal

Sift together the flour, baking powder, and the salt. Set aside. In a large bowl, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Add the honey a little at a time. Beat well after each addition. Add the eggs, one at a time. Beat well after each addition. The mixture will appear curdled. Gradually add the dry ingredients. Beat until moistened. Fold in the coconut, chips, and the cereal. Drop by teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart onto greased baking sheets. Bake at 350 F for 12-14 minutes or until golden brown. Remove to wire racks to cool.
Makes about 5 dozen

Buffalo Chips

1 cup Butter
1 cup Shortening
2 cups Brown sugar
2 cups Granulated sugar
4 Eggs
2 ts Vanilla
4 cups Flour
2 ts Soda
2 ts Baking powder
2 cups Oats
2 cups Corn flake cereal
2 cups Chocolate chips
1 cup Coconut
1 cup Pecans

Melt together butter and shortening. Cream with brown sugar, granulated sugar,
eggs, and vanilla. Sift together the flour, soda, and baking powder. Add to
creamed mixture. Mix in oats, cereal, chips, coconut and pecans. Drop large
spoonful onto cookie sheet. Bake in 350 degree oven for 15 minutes.

Black Forest Pudding Cake

1 1/4 cups Sugar
1 cup Flour
3 tb Cocoa, unsweetened
2 ts Baking powder
1/4 ts Salt
1/3 cup Butter, melted
1/2 cup Packed brown sugar
1 1/2 ts Vanilla
1/4 cup Cocoa, unsweetened
1 1/4 cup Hot water
1/4 cup Kirsch or 2 tb. water
1/2 ts almond or rum extract
1 Can cherry pie filling

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a medium-size bowl, combine 3/4 cup of the sugar, flour, three tablespoons of
the cocoa, baking powder and salt
Blend in milk, melted butter and vanilla; beat until smooth
Spread into an 8 inch square pan
In a small bowl, combine remaining 1/2 cup sugar, brown sugar and remaining 1/4
cup cocoa; sprinkle mixture evenly over batter
Combine hot water and kirsch; pour over batter. Do not stir
Bake for 40 minutes, or until center is almost set. Let stand 15 minutes
Transfer to dessert dishes and spoon pudding from bottom of pan over cake
Serve with cherry pie filling as sauce

Cranberry Apple Relish Salad

Cranberry Apple Relish Salad

2 c raw chopped cranberries
2 cups diced Tart apples
2 cups sugar
2 c diced celery
2 c chopped walnuts
1 pkg Strawberry Jello
1 pkg. Orange Jello
3 c hot water

Mix jello and water, refrigerate till starts t set. mix cranberries & sugar.
When jello is set, add cranberries and all remaining ingredients.