Monday, June 18, 2018

How to Give a Chocolate Recipe a Little Extra Zing

Those of us who LOVE chocolate know there is no such thing as chocolate that tastes too good. There simply isn't. Granted, some chocolate may taste better than others. I personally prefer the flavor of Cadbury chocolate over Hershey chocolate, but that's just me. As long as it's real chocolate, it's going to taste great, no matter what. As someone who also loves to bake, I want to do whatever I can to give my chocolate recipes a little extra zing. One of my tricks is to use coffee instead of water. Whether it's a chocolate cake, chocolate cookies, or brownies, whenever the recipe calls for water, I use coffee, the stronger the better. The coffee enhances the chocolate flavor, giving it an extra boost. Did I mention there's no such thing as chocolate that tastes too good?


Friday, June 15, 2018

Rosie's Recipe -- Gingeroons

This classic cookie recipe, courtesy of Rosie's Riveting Recipes, is sweet and spicy. Perfect for your next party or get-together, or anytime you want delicious, fresh-baked cookies.

Sugar was rationed at the time this recipe was created, so other ingredients, such as corn syrup or molasses, could be used to help sugar go further. Dark corn syrup can also be used as a substitute for molasses. Enjoy.



   3 1/4 cups sifted enriched flour
   3 teaspoons baking powder (or 2 1/2 teaspoons double-acting)*
   1 teaspoon baking soda
   1 teaspoon salt
   1 teaspoon cinnamon
   1 teaspoon ginger
   1/2 cup shortening
   1 cup sugar
   2 eggs, unbeaten
   2/3 cup dark molasses

Sift flour once, measure; add baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices; sift together three times.

Cream shortening; add sugar gradually, beating until light. Add eggs, one at a time; beat about one minute after each addition. Add molasses; beat well. Add dry ingredients in 3 portions; mix well. Drop by spoonfuls onto greased baking sheets. Sprinkle lightly with sugar. Bake in hot over (400 F) for about 10 to 12 minutes until done. Do not stack or store until cold. Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cookies.

Note: If desired, decrease sugar to 1/4 cup; add 1/2 cup strained honey or corn syrup.

* Most modern baking powders are double-acting.

Modern adaptation: Dark corn syrup may be used as a substitute for molasses.

Friday, June 8, 2018

Lemon Mint Chicken

© Can Stock Photo / MaxPayne
A couple years ago I planted some mint in my garden, and it took off like weeds. So now it's time to create some new dishes that use mint as an ingredient. This was inspired by a recipe for lime chicken and mint, and it came out amazing. If you don't have fresh lemon it also works well with fresh oranges. I like to serve it on top of brown rice. Enjoy.



  • 5 or 6 chicken breasts OR
  • 7 or 8 chicken tenders
  • 1 large lemon
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup white cooking wine
  • 2 sprigs fresh mint

Preheat oven to 375 F. Grate lemon peel for zest, and squeeze the juice over a strainer and into a small bowl. Set aside. Chop mint leaves and set aside. Place flour, paprika and salt, (if desired) into a large plastic food storage bag and shake until well blended. Pour cooking oil into a skillet and heat. As the oil is heating drop the chicken into the plastic bag and shake until well coated. Place chicken in skillet and brown on both sides. Remove from skillet and place in a baking dish. Blend lemon zest and brown sugar together in a small bowl and sprinkle on top of the chicken. Blend chicken broth, cooking wine and lemon juice together in a medium bowl and pour over the chicken. Top with chopped mint leaves and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbling and the juices in the chicken are clear.

Monday, June 4, 2018

Asian Cabbage Salad

© Can Stock Photo / tycoon

I got this recipe years ago from a friend of a friend, at whose home I once had Christmas dinner. The hostess served the most delicious salad with her meal, and she was happy to write down her recipe for me. It's economical and oh so simple to make. Add chicken or shrimp and make it a meal.


   1 head cabbage, (green or red) shredded
   1 package Oriental flavor ramen soup
   4 to 6 stalks green onions, (scallions), chopped
   1 small package sliced almonds
   1 1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds

Place cabbage, green onions and almonds in a salad bowl. Break ramen noodles into small pieces and place on a baking dish. Add sesame seeds and toast in broiler until the noodles turn golden brown and crisp. Add to salad mixture.


   3 to 4 tablespoons rice vinegar
   1/2 cup oil
   3 tablespoons sugar
   ramen soup seasoning packet
   salt and pepper

Blend all ingredients together in a small mixing bowl. Pour over salad mixture and toss.

Friday, June 1, 2018

Rosie's Recipe -- Luncheon Soup

Sometimes soup can be a meal in itself, especially on those days when you just don't have the time to cook. This soup is both hearty and easy to prepare. Best of all, you probably already have most of the ingredients in your refrigerator. This recipe is included in, Rosie's Riveting Recipes, and it's as delicious today as it was in her day. Enjoy.



   3 1/2-oz glass or 4-oz cellophane roll dried beef*
   4 medium potatoes
   1 teaspoon salt
   3 tablespoons butter
   1/4 cup shopped onion
   3 cups milk
   1/8 teaspoon pepper

Peel potatoes and cut in tiny cubes. Cover with 1 quart boiling water, and salt and let cook gently until potatoes are tender. Do not drain. Meantime place butter in small saucepan and add chopped onion and beef broken into small pieces. Let cook gently until beef is frizzled and onion clear. Combine with potatoes. Add milk and cook gently for 10 minutes. Add pepper. Serve hot with toasted crackers. Yields 6-8 servings.

* Prepackaged deli sliced roast beef can also be used. For more zing add 1/2 teaspoon season salt and increase pepper to 1/2 teaspoon.