Saturday, April 30, 2011

Oven Barbecued Brisket

This girl, who had been born in Pennsylvania & grew up in Ohio, had never heard of brisket until we moved to Texas, almost 25 years ago.  A friend I met gave me this easy recipe & I've been doing it the same way ever since.  It's now a staple at our family gatherings.  It 's an inexpensive way to feed a crowd & so tasty, too.

1 brisket (I like the trimmed kind)
garlic powder
black pepper
1/3 cup liquid smoke
1/3 cup Worcestershire Sauce

Put the brisket in a large roasting pan.  Poke the brisket all over with a heavy duty fork.  Sprinkle with garlic powder & pepper.  Mix the liquid smoke & Worcestershire sauce & pour over the meat.  Cover & marinate in fridge over night. 

The next day, roast the meat, covered in a 225 degree oven for 8-9 hours.  Take the meat out, reserving the liquid.  Wrap the meat in heavy duty foil & refrigerate.  The meat is easier to slice when cold.  The reserved liquid can be strained & then refrigerated.  The fat will rise to the top & you can discard it.  Mix about 1 1/2 cups of the reserved liquid with a bottle of barbecue sauce.

Slice the meat across the grain.  This can easily be done with an electric knife.  Put the meat back in the roasting pan or in a baking dish.  I personally like to use an electric skillet. Pour the reserved liquid/barbecue sauce over the meat & reheat.  You can even chop the meat & serve in buns.  Whatever you do, it's a yummy meal!

Note:  Sometimes I marinate it all day & then cook it all night.  That works out really well, also.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Strawberry Pie

I cut this recipe out of the Columbus Dispatch probably over 40 years ago!  It is one of my all-time favorite recipes & I can't tell you how many pies I've made over the years.  I can tell you that my dear darling & I can finish off a whole pie to ourselves in two days!!  We justify this by saying that:  A.  It doesn't keep well & B.  It gets runny after it's cut!!!!  Please try our favorite pie.

1 pre-baked pie shell (try the No Roll Pie Crust)

1 quart strawberries, cleaned & hulled & set aside

3/4 cup sugar
3 T. cornstarch
1 cup water
2 T. light corn syrup
pinch of salt

3 T. strawberry gelatin

Combine sugar & cornstarch in a heavy saucepan & stir.  Add water, corn syrup & salt.  Cook until thickened & opaque in color.  Remove from heat & add gelatin.  The original recipe said to add red food coloring, but I never do.  Stir to dissolve the gelatin.  Cool.

Pour over the berries. I usually cut the berries in half.  Mix gently & pour into the baked pie shell.  Chill.

Serves 6-8 (or 2 people in 2 days!!!!)

Monday, April 25, 2011

No Roll Pie Crust

I clipped this recipe from a Penzey's Spice Catalog in 2002.  It makes a really easy pie crust for whenever you need a single crust.  Everyone should have all the ingredients & it's quicker than going to the grocery when you need a pie shell.    It is mixed right in the pie pan.  You'll be surprised at how flaky this crust is.   I hope you try it!

1 1/2 cups flour
1 t. sugar
1/2 t. salt
1/2 cup oil (I use canola)
3 T. milk

Put all ingredients in a 9 inch pie pan.  Mix with a fork until well blended & pat into the pan.  Push the pastry up the sides & form a nice edge with your thumb & finger.  Prick the crust with a fork to prevent bubbling of the pastry during baking.

Bake at 425 degrees for 10-12 minutes or until light golden brown.  I used my convection oven & turned it down to 400 degrees.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Chicken Noodle Soup

It was chilly & rainy today so I decided to use the rest of my rotisserie chicken & make chicken noodle soup.  Since there's just two of us now, we eat part of a rotisserie chicken one day & then I use the leftovers for either chicken salad,  soup, chicken 'n dumplings, etc.  The secret to this soup is to use Reames Homestyle Frozen Egg noodles.  I used to make homemade noodles, but these are so good. 

1 leftover rotisserie or roasted chicken, bones & all
 (& extra pieces of chicken, if needed)
1 onion, chopped
2-3 stalks celery
3-4 carrots, peeled & left whole
6 cups chicken stock or broth
4 cups water
1 bay leaf
1 T. dried parsley flakes
freshly ground pepper
salt, if needed
1- 12 oz. pkg. Reames frozen noodles

Put the chicken in either a crock pot or a large stockpot  or dutch oven with all the ingredients EXCEPT the noodles.   

Cover the pot & cook on low in the crock pot or, if using the stockpot or dutch oven, cook at 225 degrees  all day.  Take the chicken out &  let cool enough to handle.  Strain the broth into a large bowl.  Save the carrots & chop up.  Discard the bones, bay leaf, etc.  Chop the cooled chicken & return to the broth along with the carrots & put in the stockpot; bring to a boil & then add the frozen noodles.  Return to a boil & then simmer for about 20 - 30 minutes, or until noodles are done.  Taste the broth to see if any seasoning is needed.

Now sit back & enjoy a delicious bowl of soup!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Peanut Butter Easter Eggs

This recipe for the peanut butter eggs is actually the same one that I use for Buckeyes.  I made these for my 4 kids while they were young & I still make them even though they're grown! Now my grandchildren enjoy them, too.   Who doesn't love a yummy treat?  I certainly feel sorry for those with peanut allergies because these are SO delicious.  Please try this easy recipe.  Your family will be so "hoppy"!!!!


4 cups powdered sugar
1 stick butter or margarine, softened
1 1/2 cups peanut butter
1 t. vanilla


12 oz. chocolate chips
1 T. shortening (can you believe that, back in the day,  we used to use 1/2 bar of parafin?)

Mix candy ingredients together until smooth.  I do this in my mixer.  Form into eggs & place on a cookie sheet that is covered with wax paper.   I actually made 20 eggs from this recipe.  You can now put these in the freezer for about 30 minutes to get really cold.  You also can put  them in the fridge to do later.

Melt the chocolate chips with the shortening.  I keep the melted chocolate in a bowl & place that bowl in another bowl of warm water.  This way the chocolate stays smooth.  Don't get any water into the bowl of chocolate!  Dip the eggs in the chocolate & place back on the wax paper.  You can decorate them with sprinkles or pipe names on with some melted white chocolate, if you wish, or leave plain.  Store in the refrigerator. 

Now, don't you deserve to eat one????  Sure, you do!!!  There are plenty left to share.  Happy Easter!!!

Makes approximately 20 eggs, depending on size formed

Monday, April 18, 2011

Ice Cream Dessert with chocolate cookie crust

For my dear DIL, who loves fudge sauce, I decided to make this for her birthday to share with the family.  You can use a store-bought fudge sauce, but this one is SO good & very easy.  I hope you try it!

For the crust:
30 oreos
1/4 cup butter, melted

1/2 gallon of ice cream, softened at room temp. for about 15 minutes

For the hot fudge sauce:
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup heavy cream (evaporated milk works!)
4 T. butter
1 t. vanilla

1.  In a food  processor, crush the oreos.  Add the melted butter & pulse.  Put the crumb mixture into a 9 x 13" pan & pat until smooth.

2.  Add half of the ice cream on top of the crust & smooth out the surface .  Put into the freezer & freeze until firm, about 30 minutes.  Keep the other half of the ice cream  in the fridge.

3.  Meanwhile, prepare the fudge sauce.  In a 2 qt. saucepan over medium heat, cook sugar, cocoa, heavy cream & butter until mixture is smooth & boils, stirring constantly.  Remove the saucepan from the heat; stir in the vanilla.  Cool fudge sauce slightly.

4.  Pour half the sauce over the ice cream.  Return pan to freezer & freeze about 20 minutes.

5.   Remove the rest of the ice cream from the fridge.  Spread it on top of the fudge sauce.  Drizzle remaining sauce on top of the ice cream in a pretty design.  I sometimes need to slighty heat the sauce in order to drizzle it.  Return pan to the freezer & freeze at least 3 hours.  If dessert is not used the same day, wrap or cover tightly.

6.  Before serving, let sit out for about 15 minutes.

Makes 12-15 servings

Friday, April 15, 2011

Shrimp Scampi with Linguini

This is a great recipe for Lent.  It supposedly serves 4-6 people, but I cut way down on the pasta, use half the butter & oil & keep everything else the same & the two of us eat the whole thing!  The recipe is courtesy of Tyler Florence, on the Food Network  & slightly adapted by me.

1 pound linguini (I often use spaghetti)
4 T. butter
4 T. olive oil
2 shallots, finely diced (I often use scallions)
2 cloves garlic
pinch of red pepper flakes, optional
1 pound shrimp, peeled & deveined (I use frozen shrimp that has been thawed & I remove the tails)
Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley (I use dried & just a sprinkle)

For the pasta, put a large pot of water on to boil.  When it comes to a boil, add a couple of tablespoons of salt & then the pasta.  Stir to make sure it separates.  Cook for about 6-8 minutes or until the pasta is not quite done.  Drain the pasta.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, melt 2 T. butter in 2 T. olive oil over medium-high heat.  Saute' the shallots, garlic & red pepper flakes until the shallots are translucent, about 3-4 minutes.  Season the shrimp with salt & pepper,  Add them to the pan & cook until they turn pink, about 2-3 minutes.  Remove the shrimp from the pan & set aside. 

Add wine & lemon juice & bring to a boil.  Add 2 T. butter & 2 T. olive oil.  When the butter has melted, return the shrimp to the pan along with the parsley & cooked pasta.  Stir well & season with salt & pepper. 

* My addition is that I like to grate Parmesan cheese over the top before serving.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Best Rolls Ever

I received this treasured recipe from a good friend years ago.  I have to say that these rolls are fabulous! They are so light & airy in texture.   You can even roll out the dough, butter it up, sprinkle with sugar & cinnamon , roll up & slice for wonderful cinnamon rolls.  Here's the recipe:

1 1/4 cups warm water
1 T. yeast
1/4 cup sugar
1 t. salt
1/3 cup oil
3-4 cups flour

Put all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix.  I use my Kitchen Aid, but you can easily do this by hand.  Add the flour, starting with 3 cups.  I usually use about 3 1/2 cups of flour.  Cover the bowl & refrigerate for 1 day or up to 1 week.

Take the dough out of the refrigerator 2 hours before you need it.  Shape the dough into balls.  I usually get around 18-20 rolls.  I roll the balls into a little flour before shaping them because the dough is rather sticky.   I put them into a greased 9 x 13 inch baking pan. Cover & let rise until doubled in size.

Uncover & bake the rolls in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Note:  You can skip the refrigerator rising & just let the dough rise until doubled, punch down & then shape & let rise again until doubled.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Triple Berry Jam

I had some frozen mixed berries in the freezer & decided to make some jam.  Jams makes such wonderful hostess gifts & they're so easy.  You can use fresh berries, but I just happened to want to use what I had in the freezer.  Here's what you do:

2 pints strawberries (2 cups crushed
1 pint raspberries (1 cup crushed)
1 pint blackberries or blueberries (1 cup crushed)
(I used 4 cups crushed triple berries, which are raspberries, blueberries & marionberries)
1/2 t. butter
7 cups sugar
1 pouch Certo (you get 2 pouches per box)

1.  Prepare jars & bands by washing in hot, soapy water. I usually sterilize them in the dishwasher.  Pour boiling water over the lids in a saucepan & let stand until ready to use.

2.  Prepare fruit by crushing with a potato masher.  I do this in a large dutch oven.

3.  Stir the sugar into the fruit & add the 1/2 t. butter to reduce foaming.

4.  Bring to a full rolling boil (a boil that doesn't stop bubbling when stirred) on high heat, stirring constantly. 

5.  Stir in Certo quickly.  Return to a full rolling boil & boil exactly 1 minute, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat.  Skim off any foam with a metal spoon.

6.  Ladle into prepared jars, filling to within 1/2" from the top.  Wipe the top of the jar with a clean, wet paper towel.  You want to have a clean seal.  Cover with the lid, using tongs to get from the hot water.  Tightly screw on the band. 

7.  You can now process in a canner or do a trick that someone told me about over 30 years ago.  Take the hot, lidded, tightly banded jars & turn upside down on a kitchen towel.  Let sit for around 10-15 minutes. Do not allow the jars to stay upside down past the time or the jam will have a gap at the bottom!  Immediately turn right side up on the towel.  You should "hear" the jar seal within a few minutes.  Check to see if the middle is down.  If lid springs back, it is not sealed & will need refrigeration.  This method for sealing jam has always worked for me.  You can also just freeze the jam, if you prefer to skip the sealing method.

8.  Let stand at room temperature for 24 hours.  Store in a cool, dark place.

Makes 8 cups of yummy, delicious jam

Friday, April 8, 2011

Peppery Oven Fries

I got this recipe out of the newspaper.  The oven fries are really savory & delicious & a great side to burgers, steaks or roasts.  If you're making them for kids, you may need to adjust the seasoning.  However, I'll bet they'd like the parmesan flavor.

3 T. grated parmesan cheese
1 t. garlic powder
1/2 t. onion salt
1/4 t. red pepper flakes
1/4 t. black pepper
3 medium potatoes, peeled & cut into 1/2" wedges
cooking spray

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 

Combine the first 5 ingredients in a large plastic bag.  Set aside.

Coat potatoes liberally with cooking spray; place in bag with the cheese mixture.  Close bag & shake until potatoes are covered with cheese.  Arrange potatoes in a single layer on a jellyroll pan that has been coated with cooking spray.  Bake for 35 minutes.

Serves 4

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Oven Barbecued Ribs

I don't know where I got the recipe for the rub, but it's a good one!  I'm thinking that my dear darling & I put it together.  I usually double or triple the ingredients & keep the rub in an old spice container.

Rub for ribs:

1 T. celery salt
1 T. garlic powder
1 T. onion powder
2 T. paprika
2 T. kosher salt
3 T. sugar
2 T. brown sugar
1 T.  chili powder
1/2 t. cayenne pepper
1 t. dried oregano

To oven barbecue the ribs:

1 slab of baby back ribs
liquid smoke
barbecue sauce

1.  Brush the ribs with a little of the liquid smoke.  Sprinkle the rub on both sides of the ribs.  You will not need to use all the rub.  Save the rest for another time.

2.  Wrap the ribs in plastic wrap & put in the fridge over night.

3.  Unwrap the ribs & put them on a foil-lined,  rimmed baking sheet.  Cover with foil to seal.  Bake in a 250 degree oven for 5-6 hours.

4.  Uncover the ribs & pour off the accumulated juices.  Brush with your favorite barbecue sauce & cook an additional 15- 30 minutes.

Monday, April 4, 2011


These breadsticks are soft & wonderful & make the house smell so great while baking.  If you haven't tried making bread, try this easy recipe.  They are really addictive!

1 T. yeast
2 T. sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water
1 t. salt
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup butter, melted
Toppings:  choose parmesan cheese, Johnny's Garlic Spread & Seasoning, dried parsley or rosemary, sesame seeds or poppy seeds, etc

1.  Mix the yeast, sugar & warm water.  Add the salt & flour & knead for 5 minutes.  I used my Kitchen Aid mixer with the dough hook.

2.  Spray the top of the dough with Pam.  Cover with plastic wrap & let rise until double.  This takes about 1 hour.

3.  Place the melted butter in a large rimmed baking sheet. 

4.  Roll the dough out on a lightly floured counter into a 15 x 20 inch rectangle.  Using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into 12 strips.  Taking one strip at a time, dip the strip into the butter & then fold in half & twist.

5.  Place all the breadsticks in the baking sheet.  Sprinkle the breadsticks with your choice of toppings.  I used the Johnny's Garlic Spread & Seasoning on mine, which you can buy at Costco.

6.  Cover & let rise for 1/2 hour.

7.  Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.
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