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Lick the Spoon | Reaching into the archives

Shelly Moran’s column, Sharing the Best, was wide-ranging, and included submissions from an equally wide-ranging readership. Perusing past columns, such as this one from Aug. 3, 1993, is a trove of ideas. The first recipe, Tomato Cheese Pie, is particularly good, especially now with tomatoes coming in from gardens. The chocolate cake is another keeper, the others I have not tried.

Sharing the Best - Aug. 11, 1993

Over the weekend I received a letter and two recipes from Kristine Johnson of St. Peters, Mo. I’ve been racking my brain trying to decide If Kristine is someone I know, maybe by a maiden name. Anyway, she reads this column and sent delicious and unusual recipes. The first is ideal for this time of the year when fresh tomatoes are plentiful. Kristine wrote that she makes this recipe for lunch.

TOMATO CHEESE PIE

1 9·inch pie shell, unbaked

3 medium tomatoes cut into wedges

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. pepper

1/2 tsp. ground basil

1/2 tsp. ground oregano or Italian seasoning

1/4 cup chopped fresh chives (green onion may be substituted)

1/2 cup mayonnaise

3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Bake piecrust in a preheated 425- degree oven for five minutes. Remove from oven and reduce temperature to 400 degrees. Fill pie shell with tomato wedges. Sprinkle salt, pepper, basil, oregano and chives over tomatoes. Combine mayonnaise, mozzarella and cheddar cheeses. Carefully spread cheese mixture evenly over tomatoes, making sure it extends to all edges. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes, or until piecrust is golden. Can be served as an appetizer, side dish or main course, depending on the size of the slices.

Kristine Johnson, St. Peters, Mo .

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This next recipe has my mouth watering even more. It starts with a cream puff pastry base.

CREAM PUFF CAKE

1 cup water

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter

1 cup all purpose flour

4 eggs

3 (4-serving size) boxes instant vanilla pudding mix

1 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened

4 cups milk

1 (8-oz.) container frozen non-dairy whipped topping, thawed

Pour water into saucepan; add butter. Bring to a boil. Add flour, stir until well mixed. Remove from heat; let cool two minutes. Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Spread mixture into greased 9x13-inch baking pan. Bake in a preheated 400-degree oven 30 to 35 minutes (watch carefully; do not over bake). Remove from oven and cool.

Combine pudding mix, cream cheese and milk; mix thoroughly. Pour mixture over cooled crust. Cover with whipped topping. Drizzle with chocolate syrup. Keep refrigerated. Yield: 12 servings.

- Kristine Johnson, St. Peters, Mo.

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While on the subject of desserts, we should include Frances Buercklin’s very favorite chocolate cake recipe, which she says is super.

FRANCES’ FAVORITE CHOCOLATE CAKE

2 cups sugar

2 sticks oleo

2 eggs

2 cups flour

1/4 tsp. salt

4 Tbsp. cocoa

1/2 tsp. cinnamon 1 tsp. soda

1/2 cup buttermilk 1 Tbsp. vanilla

1 cup boiling water

Cream the oleo; add sugar, and cream together. Beat in the eggs.

Add the salt, cocoa, cinnamon and vanilla and mix well. Have buttermilk at room temperature, or warm a few seconds in the microwave; add the soda. (Frances says this is the secret to making the cake light because the soda begins working right away.) Add one cup of the flour alternately with the buttermilk. Then add the other cup alternately with the boiling water. Batter will be very thin. Pour into greased 9x 13 baking pan (or two 8-or-9-inch layer pans). Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 45 minutes. Prepare frosting while cake is baking.

ICING

4 Tbsp. cocoa

1 stick oleo

1 lb. powdered sugar 1/3 cup milk

1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 to 1 cup nuts

Beat all icing ingredients together just before cake is done. Add nuts. Remove cake from oven and spread icing over wann cake in pan. Forget the calories and enjoy!

-Frances Buercklin, Cabot

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We might as well indulge ourselves a liule more and print another “sweet” recipe. Anyone who likes pecans should love this. It came from a magazine thal Lois Rice subscribes to and she and her family have taste-tested it.

PECAN SQUARES

Crust:

3 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup sugar

1 cup butter or margarine, softened

1/2 tsp. salt

Filling:

4 eggs

1 1/2 cups light or dark corn syrup

1 1/2 cups sugar

3 Tbsp. butter or margarine, melted

1 1/2 tsp. vanilla

2 1/2 cups chopped pecans

In a large mixing bowl, blend together flour, sugar, butter and salt until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press firmly and evenly into a greased l5”x10”xl” baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, 10 another bowl, combine first five filling ingredients. Stir in pecans. Spread evenly over hot crust. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until set. Cool on a wire rack. Cut into 4 dozen squares.

(Note: Make sure pan is at least l inch deep.)

- Mary Lois Rice. Lonoke

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Okay, let’s be fair. After printing the above desserts, we must also include some for the diet conscious or those on a diabetic diet.

CHERRY CHEESECAKE

2 tsp. unflavored gelatin

2 Tbsp. cold water

Sugar substitute to equal 1/3

cup sugar

2 1/2 cups low-fat cottage cheese

1 tsp. vanilla

1 (16-oz.) can water-packed cherries

2 tsp. cornstarch

Sugar substitute to equal 1/4

cup sugar

1/8 tsp. almond extract

6 drops red food coloring

14 graham cracker squares, crushed

4 Tbsp. reduced-calorie margarine, melted

Sugar substitute to equal 1 Tbsp. sugar

Combine gelatin and cold water in small, cup; let stand one minute. Set cup in I/2-inch boiling water to dissolve gelatin; remove from water and let cool. Add sugar substitute equaling 1/3 cup sugar to cooled gelatin. Combine cottage cheese and vanilla in blender and blend until smooth, Gradually add gelatin mixture to cottage cheese mixture. Place mixture in bowl, and chill about 20 minutes or until slightly thickened; stir occasionally.

Meanwhile, drain cherries and reserve liquid. Mix cornstarch and cherry liquid in small saucepan; stir until smooth. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until cherry mixture comes to a boil. Reduce heal and cook 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in cherries. Cool to lukewarm and blend in sugar substitute equaling 1/4 cup sugar, almond extract and food coloring; set aside.

Combine graham cracker crumbs margarine and sugar substitute equaling 1 Tbsp. sugar. Press mixture firmly into 9-inch pie pan. Spoon cottage cheese mixture into crust; top with cherry glaze. Chill over night. Cut into 12 equal slices.

Yield: 12 servings. Each serving may be exchanged for: 1 non-fat milk; 1 fat.

-Mavis Knox. Crockett. Texas

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APPLESAUCE CAKE

6 Tbsp. reduced-calorie margarine, softened

Liquid sugar substitute to equal 1/3 cup sugar

1 tsp. baking soda

1 cup cold unsweetened 10· applesauce

2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted

1 egg, beaten

1 tsp. cinnamon

4 1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1/2 tsp. cloves –

6 Tbsp. raisins

6 small walnuts, chopped

Cream margarine with sugar substitute. Combine soda and applesauce and add to margarine mixture. Add remaining ingredients; stir just until blended. (Do not over-mix.) Pour into non-stick 7- x ll-inch baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for

40 to 50 minutes. When cake is cool, cut into 15 equal portions. Each serving may be exchanged for 1 1/2 bread and 1/2 fat.

-Mavis Knox. Crockett. Texas

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This is from a different column, but is added because I like it. Quick, and easy to increase for more people:

EGGS IN POTATO NESTS

2 servings prepared instant mashed potatoes

2 Tbs. chopped tomato, well drained

1 Tbs. finely chopped green onion (with top), or 1 tsp. instant minced onion

3 slices canned sliced jalapeño, drained and chopped

2 eggs

1 to 2 Tbsp. shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Stir tomato, onion and jalapeño into prepared potatoes. In lightly

greased pie plate, with spoon, potato mixture into two nests each center about 2 1/2 inches in

diameter. Break and slip 1 egg into each nest. Sprinkle with cheese. Cover with foil or another pie plate

Bake in preheated 375 degrees F. oven until eggs are desired doneness, about 12 to 18 minutes.

MICROWAVE: Prepare potato nests and slip in eggs as above. Gently prick yolks with tip of knife or wooden pick. Sprinkle with cheese. Cover with plastic wrap. Cook on full power until eggs are desired doneness, about 3 to 4

minutes.

[Note – When microwaving, poking a hole in the yolk is necessary. For the initiated, intact yolks will pop and make a mess. It is one of the quirks of microwave cooking, similar to the cup of coffee that boils over when cream is added after heating.]

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This column is for readers to share their recipes. The recipes need not be fancy or original; just good cooking that you and your family enjoy -a few sentences of history behind a recipe would be great.

Civic organizations, non-profit organizations, churches, school classes, EHC, 4-H, etc. can also take part. Collect six or seven recipes from members, include their names; tell about the purpose of the organization, maybe a little history; include when and where the group meets, and how to join. Keep it to 500 - 600 words.

When submitting recipes, include all ingredients and instructions. Give amounts and measures as well as sizes of cans and packages. It is also helpful to know sizes of dishes or pans used. Include a contact name, city of residence and phone number; the phone number will not be published but is needed should questions arise while preparing for print.

Please print if handwritten. Original photos of the recipe results are invited, but subject to space limitations; attach pictures to the email in jpeg format. Photos must not be copyrighted.

1- e-mail - send to news@cabotstarherald.com, with “Lick the Spoon” in the subject line

2 - U.S Postal Service: mail to Cabot Star-Herald, P.O. Box 1058, Cabot, AR 7202

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