RECIPE

Chocolate Bon Bons

Chocolate Bon Bons

My favorite kind of chocolate to work with is cocoa. However, that doesn't work for making dipping chocolate. At least I don't know how to do that. I have several candy recipes I make every Christmas, but Anne's favorite is my Chocolate Bon Bons.

I came across this candy recipe a few years ago. It certainly didn't look like a candy recipe. What candy lists flour among its ingredients? This is the only one I know of.

Soft Molasses Cookies

Soft Molasses Cookies

There are handsome gingerbread men. This is not that recipe. This is an, oh, so soft, ginger flavored work of art. The aroma lingers in the air long after you bake a batch. Your kids coming in the door from school will head straight for the cookie jar. This is a cookie to make when a cold west wind is swirling snow around the yard and you hope the kids get the mail from the mailbox when they get off the bus so you won't have to go out in it. It is that kind of cookie.

Liver Patties

Liver Patties

Not everyone likes liver. It is safe to say that most people dislike liver. I love liver. My daughter Anne hates it. We live together, so I can only fix it if she is not going to be home that day. That out of the way, let me tell you why I like liver. Well, I don't know why, I just do.

Fruitcake

Fruitcake

Why does fruitcake get such a bad rap? They aren't all hard and tasteless. I like mince pie and I like fruitcake. To me they are in the same class of food. To prove it, I have a recipe to share with you for a Mincemeat Fruitcake.

Goat Salami

Goat Salami

We sold my dad's farm to some folks from Chicago. I shouldn't say that these Chicago people were different, but they were. They had never farmed before. This was to be an adventure. Yeah right, adventure! It was hilarious watching those city dudes adjust to country living. They stood out on a goat farm in a county that didn't do goats. We couldn't give them any advice on how to raise goats. We recognized a picture of a goat when we saw one. That was about it. Fortunately, for the goats, their enterprise thrived.

Fried Green Tomatoes

Fried Green Tomatoes

We all have our own recipe for Fried Green Tomatoes. I have mine and will share it with you. Green tomatoes fresh from the garden are best, but nowadays, you can buy them at the grocery store. I buy a couple whenever I see them, even though they cost the same as the ripe ones. Do you think, like I do, that they should be cheaper, since they're not ripe? Oh well.

Baked Cake Toppings

Baked Cake Toppings

To eliminate the need for frosting and/or to have the cake ready to eat as soon as it is cool enough, some cakes can be made with a topping spread on the batter before baking. They are quick and easy to make and eliminate the necessity of frosting the cake after baking. Baked toppings are best on cakes baked in square or oblong pans. The following recipes will make enough topping to frost them. If you are making a cake in a large jelly roll pan, double the recipes.

Legs! Legs! Turkey Legs!

Legs! Legs! Turkey Legs!

When I roast a turkey, everyone in my family goes for the white meat. I am the only one opting for the drumstick or thigh. That is, until I fix Turkey Legs and Gravy. Years ago in the 60s, turkey legs in the meat case at the store went for thirty-nine cents a pound. I could afford that. The problem was to figure out a recipe that my family would eat.

Club Sandwiches

Club Sandwiches

We have gotten away from the club sandwich. McDonald's and Burger King have spoiled us with their tasty hamburgers and fries. I remember seeing my first Mickey D's. There was no going back to just plain sandwiches, or even club sandwiches. Back in the day, every lunch counter had their specialty club sandwich. They were made fresh as you watched the counter girl pile on the goodies. Most homes didn't have fresh tomatoes or lettuce out of season. What a treat!

CREAMED EGGS

CREAMED EGGS

This is a good dish to make at Easter time when you have an abundance of decorated hard boiled eggs. Don't use any that have been out of the fridge over a few hours. This is a good dish to serve on toast or hot biscuits for lunch. Sometimes we forget how versatile eggs can be. Don't let hard boiled eggs go uneaten. Fancy them up either as Deviled Eggs or Creamed Eggs.

Baking with Cocoa

Baking with Cocoa

These days, there are a number of types of chocolate to use in our dessert making. For instance, we use Baker's Sweet Chocolate for making German Chocolate Cakes. A variety of chocolate chips find their way into our candy and cookie recipes. But I like baking with cocoa.

Back in the day, cocoa was cheaper than chocolate baking squares. On a limited budget, cost was everything: almost. I could get more mileage from a box of cocoa than I could from those skimpy chocolate squares. It had a longer shelf life as well. That made cocoa a winner for me.

Homemade Popcorn

Popcorn

When the heat source is wood or coal embers, use a long-handled wire popper. Put only enough corn in popper to cover bottom. Shake gently to get tender puffy kernels.

When popping on your kitchen range, use a large kettle or deep skillet. Add about 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil or shortening. Don't use butter or margarine. Add ½ cup popcorn to hot skillet. Cover and shake gently and constantly over medium heat. You can hear when the popping stops. Remove from heat to a large bowl and add salt. 1 cup unpopped corn makes about 5 cups when popped.

Coconut Drop Cookies

Coconut Drop Cookies

I like coconut in just about anything sweet. This is an easy quick recipe that is cheap to make. Do you have all your ingredients measured out before you make a baking recipe? It is wise to do so even if you have made it a dozen times before. Forget any ingredient and the recipe will suffer for it. There is nothing worse than to start on the process of stirring up a batch of cookies and finding you only have one egg when you need two or three. It is also wise to measure everything out in their own dishes so you won't add too much milk for instance.

Baked Spaghetti

Baked Spaghetti

This is a good dish to make for a Sunday after church potluck, or for any occasion when you are short on time. Put it together the night before, refrigerate, and bake the next morning while getting the family ready for church. Since the casserole is chilled, it will take a little longer to bake than the time given below.

Black Walnut Drops

Black Walnut Drops

Anyone who knows me knows of my taste for black walnuts. When my kids were small and money was tight, I would load the three youngest ones in the pickup. After a fall's hard freeze, we would head for my favorite walnut trees along country roads. Each child would have his or her own pail. “Pick 'em up as fast as you can,” I would yell.

Sometimes, neighbors took offense with our picking up the walnuts, even if the walnuts were out in the roadway. We did get run off occasionally, but it didn't take long to fill the pickup bed with the ones we could get.

Homemade Corn Salsa

Homemade Corn Salsa

I like corn salsa. It is best made in the summertime with fresh vegetables. Red tomatoes in the winter don't taste as good as tomatoes fresh from the garden. That goes for sweet corn, too. We like sweet corn freshly cut from the cob and fried with butter, salt and sugar. Oh well, that is another dish. For this salsa, canned whole kernel corn can be used as well. I learned to appreciate red onions while working at Arby's in Halls. I was introduced to jalapeno peppers when we moved to Tennessee. Before that, I only used the yellow hot banana peppers.

Oatmeal Crisps

Oatmeal Crisps

This is a good cookie recipe for those who are gluten intolerant. It is a little tricky to make, but even at your first attempt if the cookies break up when you take them off the cookie sheet, they will still taste good. Add ½ cup chopped walnuts or pecans for added flavor.

Daffodil Cake

Daffodil Cake

I should have written about this cake back in the spring when daffodils were in bloom. It’s called “Daffodil Cake” because of its white and yellow color. But why can’t we call it a “Chrysanthemum Cake”? They are yellow, too. That would be in keeping with the Autumn season.

Have you ever heard of a Daffodil Cake? It is not an angel food cake. It has egg yolks in it. It’s not a chiffon cake either. It doesn’t have any oil. Nope. It’s in a class by itself.

Puffy Omelet and All

Puffy Omelet and All

How do you like your omelets? Mother never made one as I remember growing up. Eggs were either fried or hard-boiled. With no electricity or ways to keep food cold and a well stocked chicken coop, my family ate a lot of eggs. Mother never heard of omelets back in the day. Dad liked his eggs only one way, fried with the yolk soft and on buttered toast. Mother had no reason to fix eggs any other way.

Lemon Snaps

Lemon Snaps

When as a child you first learned to cook, what was the first recipe you tried? For me, it was cookies. It is hard to mess up a cookie recipe. Pies can be tricky and cakes have a multitude of things that can go wrong. Cookies are more forgiving. You might have had your mother squeeze the lemon for this recipe, but that would be the only hard part. Or for your first time making cookies, your mother could stir up the dough and then let you prepare the cookies for baking.

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