Turkey Shepherd’s Pie

An excellent recipe for using up cooked turkey and gravy over the holidays.  Creamy potatoes mix with sharp cheese and flavorful turkey in this pie.

Ingredients

2 cups chopped cooked turkey

turkey-shepherds-pie
Use your favorite vegetables in the recipe

1 cup sliced carrots

1 diced onion

1 cup sliced mushrooms

2 cups turkey or chicken gravy

1 tsp sage

2 cups mashed potatoes Continue reading Turkey Shepherd’s Pie

Easy Trifle

Layer this recipe in a clear bowl so that you can see the layers. The jam and gelatin powder can be adjusted to your favorite flavors.

Ingredients

1 box of French Vanilla cake mix

trifle
The vanilla cake can be changed for Angel Food Cake.

2 boxes raspberry jello powder

1 jar raspberry jam

1 can custard powder

whipped cream

1 tbsp sugar

Mix cake mix according to instructions on the box.  Bake in a parchment lined rectangular pan according to manufacturer’s instructions. Remove from oven and cool before proceeding with recipe. Continue reading Easy Trifle

Double Cookies

Double cookies are a patterned sugar cookie.  Color each portion of  dough with your favorite color.  It can also be colored for the season; red for Christmas, orange for Halloween or pink for Easter.

Be creative with the design.  Use stars, hearts, or triangles for simple designs.

Ingredients

1 cup butter

double-cookies
Vary the color and design with the season.

1/2 cup sugar

4 egg yolks

1 tsp vanilla

2 1/2 cups flour

3 tsp cinnamon

liquid food coloring Continue reading Double Cookies

Cranberry Tarts

Tart and tangy these mini tarts are perfect for Thanksgiving or Christmas.  The tarts make a colorful addition to any party platter.

The tarts store in the refrigerator for several weeks and freeze well.

Ingredients

Pastry

cranberry-tarts
Tart and tangy these mini tarts are perfect for Thanksgiving or Christmas.

3 cups flour

1 tsp salt

1/2 lb vegetable shortening

1 egg

milk

Mix flour, salt and vegetable shortening until crumbly.  To a measuring cup add 1 egg and enough milk to make 1/2 cup.  Pour wet mixture into flour mixture and combine.  Chill for at least an hour.

Cranberry Mixture

3/4 cup cranberries

1/4 cup raisins

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 tbsp flour

dash salt

1/3 cup hot water.

Combine above in blender until mixture is smooth.  Pour into prepared tart shells using the pastry recipe above.  Bake in a 400 degree Fahrenheit oven for 20 minutes.

Jam Sunflower Squares

These squares are ooey and gooey, and are popular with chocolate lovers. You can use your favorite jelly or jam for the second layer.  I prefer raspberry as it goes well with the chocolate.

Serve this dessert plated with a fork and tea.

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups flour

jam-sun-flower-bars
I use raspberry jam.  It goes well with chocolate.

1 cup sugar

1/4 cup shelled sunflower seeds (unsalted)

1 beaten egg

1 cup cold butter

jam (your favorite flavor)

chocolate chips Continue reading Jam Sunflower Squares

Christmas Helpful Hints

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    Christmas Helpful Hints

    Never leave an open flame unattended, especially near a Christmas tree.  Many fires are caused over the season from candles.

  • Wrap presents in colorful comic strips, sheet music or wallpaper that you have around the house.  Decorate with bows , baubles or greenery.
  • Have a scavenger hunt for small trinkets to keep children busy while you are preparing the meal.  They’ll have fun and you’ll have more time to prepare the turkey.
  • Prepare as much of the food as you can ahead of time.  Even better delegate specific dishes to family members who are coming to visit.  Everyone will have more time to visit.
  • Keep plenty of batteries on hand for gifts that unexpectedly need batteries or for cameras.  You don’t want to be without your camera to record the fun.
  • If you must drink invite guests to stay over for the night or alternatively take a taxi home.
  • Make a garland from snapshots of your children from the past year and hang above the fireplace.  Alternatively,  children’s artwork can be cut in snowflakes, trees or snowman and strung in a garland as well.  It’s a fun way to keep your children’s treasures without having to store reams of paper.

Yule Log

This show piece for your Christmas table takes some time to make but the recipe isn’t hard.  Use your imagination to decorate the tree stump.  You can be traditional and make it look like a tree or you can be more abstract as in my example.  Either way the chocolate icing against the light and airy cake is delicious.

Ingredients

5 eggs( separated)yule-log

1 cup sugar

2 tsp vanilla

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup cocoa

dash of salt

1 package ricotta cheese

2 cups cranberries

1 cup water Continue reading Yule Log

Helpful Hints

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Helpful Hints
  • Store marshmallows in the freezer to keep them from going dry.
  • Dip scissors in hot water when cutting marshmallows or sticky candy.
  • Keep nuts in the freezer to keep them from going rancid.
  • Store peanut butter upside down to allow the natural oils to combine with the peanut mixture.
  • When doubling recipes always use the original amount of salt.
  • Coat your measuring cup with oil before measuring out sticky liquids like molasses or honey.
  • Spray beaters with vegetable oil before using.
  • Roll dried fruit in a light coating of flour to prevent it from sinking to the bottom of batters.
  • Sprinkle your cake plate with sugar to prevent the cake from sticking to the pan when serving.
  • Place a slice of apple on your cake plate to keep your cake fresh longer.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Clusters

This no-bake cookie has the classic flavors of chocolate and peanut butter.  You only need one of these cookies to satisfy your sweet tooth as the cookies are delightfully sweet.

Ingredients

1/2 cup brown sugar

Chocolate Peanut Butter Clusters1/2 cup corn syrup

1 cup creamy peanut butter

3 cups corn cereal (The flaked kind)

5 squares of baking chocolate melted (I like dark chocolate)

Mix ingredients together in a large bowl until thoroughly combined.  Line a cookie tray with parchment paper and drop mixture by spoonfuls onto parchment.  Chill.  Serve cool.