Milkmaid's Recipe Box

FOOD, FOOD, FOOD! I'm such a FARMER at heart-- even a CALF knows that so much in life is about the FOOD! (A bit of a "bio" about me can be found way down near the bottom.)

You can find a recipe index entitled "Labels" down along the right side, starting below the picture of the farm. Then, below the "Label" list are pictures of some of my old "standbys"-- click on their picture and it should take you to the recipe.

You will see no advertising on my blog; this means there is no monetary benefit for me having "visitors" or "joiners"-- having said that, if you do wish to JOIN my blog, you can do so by scrolling w-a-y down to near the bottom of the page...

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Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Hamburger . Noodle . Crescent Roll Casserole*



Making something from what I already had-- that was my goal.   I had a pound of thawed ground beef, onion, creamed corn, tomato soup, Parmesan cheese, elbow macaroni, and a tube of crescent rolls.  This is quite a bit like what my mother would make during my young years.  I liked it then, and,... I like it now!  Since this was a recipe I'd "met" in the distant past, I was surprised to find an almost identical posting of it-- a posting by Dianne Clew in June of 2003.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 of 15-oz. can creamed corn
  • 1 of 10-oz. can tomato soup, undiluted (you could probably use a different "favorite" soup)
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 and 1/2 cups uncooked macaroni noodles, cooked according to directions
  • Desired seasonings, according to your taste.
  • 6 slices of American cheese
  • 1 of 8-oz. tube of Crescent rolls  (or a 12-oz. tube of small-type refrigerated biscuits)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a heavy skillet, brown beef with onion.
  2. Add creamed corn, the soup of your choice, and grated Parmesan cheese.
  3. Simmer for about 15 minutes, while cooking macaroni.
  4. Add cooked macaroni to the meat/onion/soup/cheese mixture.
  5. Season to taste.
  6. Pour into a greased or sprayed casserole dish.  (I used one that is considered to be 2.5 quart in size.  Check photos at the bottom to see this baked in a 9x13" dish.)
  7. Top with slices of American cheese.
  8. IF using Crescent rolls,  do not unroll them.  Instead, with a sharp knife, cut the UNrolled roll into about 14-15 slices like you would do for making a cinnamon roll. Place slices on top of the cheese slices.   (The reason I said to use a sharp knife for this is so that the roll won't be squashed down during the cutting process.  Sometimes, I've even used a thread for cutting things like this.)  IF you are using a tube of biscuits, just cut them in half to cover top of mixture.
  9. Bake at 350-degrees F. until the Crescent rolls or biscuits are browned to your liking.   I think it took me about 20 minutes to get them as shown in the photos.  (Check your own oven to see how this time might vary for you.)  I took mine out of the oven when it looked like this...


The sauce mixture was lightly bubbling in 
the openings between the rolls...


This was well-liked...


* IF you prefer to bake this in a 9x13 pan or glass dish, go ahead and do it like I did the second time through.  To make this work, I just increased the amount of American cheese slices FROM six TO eight.  Also, I cut the unrolled tube of Crescent rolls into 24 of only 1/4" slices to end up with enough to make six rows of four on the top of this larger surface...just like this...

The baking time for the 9x13" was about 
18 minutes.   Bake according to YOUR oven.



Sunday, March 23, 2014

Olive Cream Cheese Dip/Spread

IF you like olives, I think you will 
like this...  IF, that is!


I wouldn't need crackers, nor chips, nor veggie sticks to enjoy this dip because...Sh-h-h-h-h,... I could eat it off my FINGER, then lick the beaters, and lick the bowl!!!!  

About five years ago, I was in what was then the Country Store where they had a tray of crackers and little open containers of their "made in house" dips/spreads to sample.  I tried the creamy olive mixture and liked it... a lot!  I looked at the price on the container.  Oooooooh, I thought it was a bit pricey at $3.00 for quite a small amount, but ... I bought it... and wasn't sorry.  But,... since then, I hadn't had anything like it... until now!

Last week, I was looking through some recipes submitted by Kittencal* at http://www.kittencalskitchen.com/ and noticed that this one looked like it could be what I was hoping to find.  I made it up and "adjusted" it to take the olive part of it down just a tad bit by adding more cream cheese so that the rest of my family would like it better.  It worked!

This serves about 15 or more?

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 of 8 oz. packages cream cheese, softened.
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or adjusted to taste.
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil.
  • 1 fresh clove of garlic, finely minced (or 1 tsp. minced garlic from a jar).
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (I used bottled juice that was newly purchased).
  • 1 of 4.25-ounce can black olives, well-drained and chopped.
  • 1/2 cup pimiento-stuffed olives, well-drained and chopped.
  • Fresh ground black pepper, if desired (I didn't add it).
  • Crackers or pita chips or veggie sticks for dipping/spreading.


INSTRUCTIONS:
Stir together the first 5 ingredients until very smooth and well blended.
Mix in chopped olives, and then season with black pepper (if desired).
Serve with crackers or ????



* I do not know Kittencal, but,... I've liked her along with her writings and recipe postings for quite a few years, already.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Lemon Squares*



This is VERY ... LEMON'y!!!!
I love the strong "KICK of lemon" in here!
But,...I suggest that IF you want 
more sweet and LESS "tang",
try using only half as much lemon 
zest as the recipe calls for 
and see how that goes.


INGREDIENTS:

2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 tablespoons sugar
.....
2  of 8-oz. cream cheese, softened
2 of 14-oz. sweetened condensed milk
4 egg yolks
2 tablespoons lemon zest
1 cup lemon juice
....
1 and 1/2 cups thawed whipped cream or whipped topping.
Raspberries for garnishing, if desired

DIRECTIONS:

HEAT oven to only 325-degrees F.
LINE 9x13-inch baking dish or pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides.  Lightly spray the foil liner with non-stick spray.
MIX graham cracker crumbs, butter and sugar until blended and press onto bottom of prepared dish or pan.  I like to use my off-set spatula for this-- It looks like this:
 


  • BAKE the layer of pressed graham crackers for 10 minutes.
  • MEANWHILE, beat cream cheese with mixer until smooth/creamy.  Gradually beat in the condensed milk.  Add egg yolks (one at a time) and mix well.  Blend in lemon zest and lemon juice.  Pour over crust.
  • BAKE about 30 minutes or until center is set (since ovens vary, check after 25 minutes).  
  • COOL completely.  Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.  
  • USE foil handles to remove dessert from pan before cutting into bars.  By having this OUT of the pan and then using a really long knife, you can make very clean cuts (but, do wipe knife edge off between each cut).
  • SERVE topped with whipped cream or whipped topping.  Add raspberry(ies), if desired.

Because I only had FROZEN raspberries 
here, this isn't as pretty as it would 
be with a FRESH one!

Mm-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m....

* This recipe came from the Spring 2014 
edition of Kraft's Food & Family-- I  made 
the crust according to the original directions, 
but,................... my ingredient list shows 
everything else ALREADY doubled.
 (I wanted the lemon'y layer 
to be thicker like this!) 

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Sausage Gravy over Cheddar Cheese'y Biscuits



It was again time to feed my "southern roots" with some sausage gravy over biscuits.  

My mother was born in Texas, moved to Oklahoma, and then grew up in Arkansas before coming to this farm as a new bride in April of 1930.  I liked  loved making trips to the south with her-- the southern food made/served by her family made a strong impression on me.  For sure, the freshly made biscuits for breakfast EVERY morning-- they were so high, light, and delicious.  Besides variations of sausage gravy to go with them, I remember they often partnered their "blue ribbon biscuits" with a tasty warm pudding-type rice dish which had in it the most plump/sweet raisins I'd ever seen-- I've LIKED raisins ever since!!!!  
ooooooooooooooooooooo

Yesterday, I browned the sausage; then, made the gravy.  I refrigerated this overnight. Today, after church, I quickly made up the cheddar biscuits and this is what I ended up with.

GRAVY  INGREDIENTS:
  • 1 pound tube of pork sausage (I used the sage flavored variety)
..............................
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 of 12 oz. can whole evaporated milk
  • 1 of 12 oz. can water
  • salt and pepper, to taste.
GRAVY  DIRECTIONS:

I browned this sausage in a large skillet over medium-high heat until it was brown.  Then, I removed it from the pan with a slotted spoon  and set it aside, but left the drippings in the pan for making the gravy.
..................
  1. Stir the butter into the drippings until melted. 
  2. Sprinkle the flour into the drippings/butter mixture and stir until smooth.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium, and cook this drippings/butter/flour mixture only until light brown.
  4. Gradually whisk in the milk until all is smooth, and cook until thickened.  You must constantly stir this to prevent sticking/scorching. This period of cooking will "cook" the mixture and eliminate a "flour" taste.
  5. Season with salt and black pepper.
  6. Stir in cooked sausage.
  7. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 12 to 15 minutes.  If gravy becomes too thick, you can stir in a little more milk.
000000000000000000

BISCUIT  RECIPE:  
   
Here are the links to two of my favorite biscuit recipes-- they are already posted in this blog:  


...and,...the recipe for the biscuits I made today is here:




Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Chicken Breasts with Bacon, Cream and Peas*



Recipe background:  For the first time in my life, because of me having a stiff neck that had been getting "more stiff" over a period of five years, I was going to a chiropractor (I called him my "chiro-cracker").  ANYHOW,... on his desk, I saw the Cooking Light magazine and found it to be interesting.  Shortly after that, when our little foster girl brought home one of those dreaded wonderful fund-raising brochures, I decided I really did NOT need to buy anymore gadget'y gadgets because I already have the ones I wanted/use.   After I noticed there were magazine subscription options in the brochures, I went with that and ordered my own subscription to this Cooking Light magazine.  In my very first issue, I saw this recipe and decided I just had to try it...
I liked the end result of this recipe, but 
will admit I did not care for how many 
different "steps" of preparation are listed.  
Before the meal was finished, one of my 
guests asked for this recipe... so,
here it is!

Serves 4  (I think this could serve six!)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 and 1/2 ounces pancetta, chopped (I substituted with about 1/4 cup of bacon pieces)
  • 4  (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves (I cut each of these into half, and ended up with 8 pieces)
  • 3/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine (I used 1/2 chicken stock/broth, instead)
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken stock/broth (such as Swanson brand)
  • 2 tablespoons mascarpone cheese (I used same amount of cream cheese)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup frozen green peas, thawed

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat.  Add oil to pan; swirl to coat.  Add garlic; cook only 2 minutes, stirring frequently to PREVENT scorching/burning.
  2. Remove garlic from pan with slotted spoon; set garlic aside.  
  3. Increase heat to medium-high.  Add pancetta (or bacon pieces) to the same pan and saute for about 4 minutes or until crisp.  Remove meat from pan with a slotted spoon; set meat aside.
  4. Sprinkle chicken pieces with salt and pepper; saute in same pan for 4 minutes on each side.  Remove chicken from pan.  
  5. Add wine to same pan (I used chicken broth/stock); bring to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits.
  6. Cook until the liquid almost evaporates (about 3 minutes).  
  7. Return chicken to same pan.  Add the last one cup of chicken stock/broth.  Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook chicken for 6 minutes or until chicken is done.  Remove chicken from pan.
  8. Add mascarpone (I used cream cheese, cut into tiny pieces) to same pan, stirring with a whisk until smooth.  Combine water and flour, stirring with a whisk.  Add flour mixture to this pan; bring to a boil.  Cook 2 minutes to thicken and cook the "flour taste" away. 
  9. Stir in the set aside pancetta OR bacon, the set aside garlic, and the peas.  Cook 1 minute.  
  10. Serve sauce over chicken.  (If you would want a thicker sauce, you could, before serving, add one can Cream of Chicken soup to it-- but, if doing that, I'd dilute it with at least 1/2 soup can of milk.)

Something I did differently:  I followed the recipe as I typed it up, but then, as you can see in the SECOND picture from the top of this posting, I put the pieces into a 9x13-inch baking dish and then covered it with foil before putting it into the oven for about 25-30 minutes at 350-degrees.  The downside of that was... the tiny peas "aged" (and shriveled) a bit.    : (

Above:  Shown with the sauce/peas/bacon also 
spread over a piece of toasty garlic bread.

* Cooking Light, March/2014, page 89

Monday, March 10, 2014

Corn and Squash Soup*


Our daughter Pam made this Corn and Squash Soup just yesterday for our 51st Wedding Anniversary dinner (for us farmer-like people, "dinner" is the meal we eat at noon).  

Why this kind of soup?  Because, on Saturday, she found that her huge 20-pounder Hubbard squash had SAVED very well in the basement.  (This is almost six months after being brought in from the garden.)  

What to do with the 16+ cups of cooked/strained squash she got from that one Hubbard?  Look for a recipe! (Look for a recipe, find one, and then TRIPLE it!!!)  Yep,... she found this one in a Taste of Home cookbook, and this good soup was the end result.  

In fact, this ended up being such a goooooood soup that a number of the twelve guests here took seconds of it-- even our little 9-month-old great-granddaughter Lucy smacked it down.  This is a recipe I just have to keep handy-- that's why I am putting it in this blog.  Thanks!, Pam.

Even though this recipe was TRIPLED for yesterday, here is the recipe for a single batch...

INGREDIENTS: 

  • 12 bacon strips (1 lb. will do), cut into small pieces and cooked until brown/crisp.
  • 1 medium onion, chopped.
  • 1 celery rib, chopped or finely sliced.  (We used frozen celery from our freezer.)
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour.
  • 1 of 14.5 oz. can of chicken broth.
  • 6 cups cooked and smashed Butternut or Hubbard squash. (To get this, the whole squash was cut in half and "cleaned out"; then, each half was placed upside down on a baking sheet and baked for about 45 minutes at 350-degrees, or until fork tender.) 
  • 2 of 8 and 3/4 oz. each cans cream-style corn. (We used a 1 lb. bag of sweet corn kernels we'd frozen from last year's garden, but drained some of the "thawing" juice from the container before using.)
  • 2 cups half-and-half cream. (We added 8 oz. heavy cream to enough 2% milk to get this amount.)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley (We used frozen.)
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Sour cream, optional, for garnishing.

DIRECTIONS:
  1. In a large saucepan, cook (fry?) bacon over medium heat until crisp.  
  2. Remove browned bacon pieces from pan to a paper towel to absorb grease.  
  3. From the bacon grease still in the pan, reserve 2 tablespoons of it.  
  4. In the reserved drippings, saute onion and celery until tender.  
  5. Stir in flour until blended.  
  6. Gradually stir in broth; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until slightly thickened.  
  7. Reduce heat to medium.  Stir in the squash, corn, cream, parsley, salt, pepper and bacon pieces.  
  8. Cook and stir until heated through.  
  9. Garnish with sour cream if desired.
YIELD:  8 servings, or about 2.5 quarts.  While this recipe was TRIPPLED for yesterday, I have to say any left-over soup was SO good on this second day!  

And,... silly me!!!!, to think I was a bit SKEPTICAL about her making and me LIKING this kind of soup!!!  In fact, when Pam called other family members to come over and join us for yesterday, she told them what she was making and added, ".. so, that's what's on the menu.  If anyone thinks they won't like it, they can bring something they know they will  like!"   As it turned out,.... no worries with a winner like this!!!!

* This recipe was adapted from the original 
that was posted in Taste of Home by Janice Zook, 
White River Junction, Vermont.