A new year brings new recipes

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

With the ushering in of a new year, I have to stop and count my many blessings -- which add up to far more than I deserve. Among those many gifts I have been given are members of my precious family.

As my nieces become adults I have a different relationship with them, and it's so much fun. My niece Christa has been trying new recipes occasionally and she has one that is a real keeper. Add this recipe to your files for this new year.

Seafood Pizza

1 (6 1/2-ounce) package pizza crust mix

3 tablespoons butter, divided

2 tablespoons flour

3/4 cup milk

1/4 cup chicken broth

1/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese

1/4 cup shredded Swiss cheese

1/4 pound uncooked bay scallops, chopped

1/4 pound cooked shrimp, peeled, deveined and chopped

1/4 pound imitation crabmeat, chopped

2 cups (8 ounces) shredded Mozzarella cheese

Paprika (optional)

Prepare pizza dough according to package directions. Press onto a lightly greased 12-inch pizza pan; build up edges slightly. Prick dough thoroughly with a fork. Bake at 400 degrees for 5 to 6 minutes, or until crust is firm and begins to brown.

Meanwhile, in a saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Stir in flour until smooth. Gradually stir in milk and broth. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes, or until thickened. Reduce heat. Stir in Monterey Jack and Swiss cheeses until melted. Remove from the heat.

In a skillet, melt the remaining butter over medium heat. Add scallops; cook until firm and opaque, approximately 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the shrimp, crab and 3 tablespoons cheese sauce. Remove from the heat.

Spread remaining cheese sauce over the crust. Top with the seafood mixture; sprinkle with Mozzarella cheese and paprika, if desired. Bake for 13 to 16 minutes, or until golden brown. Let stand for 5 to 10 minutes before cutting.

I saw an article in a magazine about the St. Peter's Lutheran Church in Lebanon, Wis., and their new cookbook. After reading the article, I had to have the book. It came this week and I would like to pull a couple of recipes from the book to pass along. The church has an annual cookie sale and they have included more than 100 cookie recipes in this book. Now that is my kind of book!

Almond Cookies

1 cup butter or margarine

1/2 cup sugar

2 tablespoons water

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon almond extract

2 cups sifted flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 cup chopped, toasted almonds

Sugar

Almonds

Cream butter, 1/2 cup sugar, water, vanilla and almond extract. Sift together flour and baking powder; add to creamed mixture, add almonds. Mix well. Chill. Roll into 1-inch balls and roll in sugar. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Press a whole almond onto each cookie. Bake at 350 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes until golden brown. Cool on rack.

Eggnog Spritz

2/3 cup sugar

1 cup butter, softened

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 teaspoons vanilla

2 1/4 cups flour

Glaze:

1 cup powdered sugar

1/4 cup butter, softened

2 tablespoons water

1/4 teaspoon rum extract

Heat oven to 400 degrees. In a large mixer bowl, combine sugar, butter, egg, salt, spices and vanilla. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until mixture is light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add flour. Beat at low speed, scraping bowl often, until well mixed, 2 to 3 minutes.

If dough is too soft, cover and refrigerate until firm enough to form cookies, 30 to 45 minutes. Place dough in cookie press. Form desired shapes 1-inch apart on cookie sheets. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. For glaze, in small bowl, stir together powdered sugar, butter, water and rum extract until smooth. Drizzle or pipe over warm cookies.

Germantown Cookies

1 cup sugar

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup butter or margarine

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon orange peel

1 cup oats

1 cup coconut

1 cup pecans, chopped

Chocolate stars

Preheat oven to a moderate 350 degrees. Cream together sugars and butter or margarine. Add eggs, then vanilla. Sift dry ingredients (flour, soda, powder and salt) together. Add this and the orange peel to first mixture. Add oats, coconut and nuts. Stir well.

Drop by tablespoonfuls onto cookie sheets. Bake for 12 minutes. Let cool on pan for 2 to 3 minutes. Move to cooling surface (paper towels or cooling tacks) and let cool completely. Top with chocolate stars.

Grapefruit-Cranberry Cookies

1/2 cup snipped dried cranberries or cherries

1/2 teaspoon finely shredded grapefruit peel or zest, set aside

3 tablespoons grapefruit juice

1 tablespoons light-colored corn syrup

1/2 cup butter or margarine

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 egg

1 3/4 cups flour

1/2 cup chopped pecans

Grapefruit icing

Combine cranberries or cherries, grapefruit juice and corn syrup in a small bowl. Let stand for 15 minutes. Beat butter or margarine with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar, baking powder and salt; beat until combined.

Drain dried fruit; add liquid and egg to sugar mixture. Beat until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in grapefruit peel, drained fruit, any remaining flour and pecans.

Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls 2-inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 9 to 11 minutes or until edges are very lightly browned. Transfer cookies to wire racks to cool. Drizzle with Grapefruit Icing.

Grapefruit icing: Stir together 1 1/2 cups sifted powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons softened butter or margarine, 1/2 teaspoon finely shredded grapefruit peel and enough grapefruit juice (1 to 2 tablespoons) to make of drizzling consistency.

A non-cookie recipe from the book that sounds great to me includes the use of beef tenderloin. How can you go wrong with that?

I hope you will clip and add these recipes to your collection and use them to add enjoyment to a holiday or upcoming event you might be hosting. Until next time, have a happy new year and happy cooking.

Susan McClanahan is administrator at the Cape Girardeau Senior Center. Send recipes to her at smcclanahan@semissourian.com or by mail at P.O. Box 699, Cape Girardeau, Mo. 63701. Recipes published have not been kitchen-tested by Southeast Missourian staff.

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