Recipes fit for one of Missouri's first ladies

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The "Missouri 1821-1971 Sesquicentennial Cookbook, Updated and Republished for a New Generation of Missourians" by former Missouri first lady Betty Cooper Hearnes is now available and hot off the presses. This hardback book contains historical information about the writer's life growing up in Charleston, Mo., her family with her husband and their children and living in and restoring the governor's mansion in Jefferson City, Mo. The book has many color photographs and lots of stories along with recipe submissions from political figures from across America. You will enjoy not only the recipes but the history this book offers.

Green Tomato Relish

Submitted by Mrs. Leo W. Schrader, wife of state representative, Jefferson City

2 pounds or more green tomatoes

2 pounds apples

1 pound ground suet

1 1/2 tablespoons salt

1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon

4 tablespoons lemon rind, grated

1 teaspoon cloves

1 teaspoon nutmeg

2 cups raisins

1/2 cup lemon juice

1/2 cup orange juice

7 cups sugar

Wash and grind tomatoes, cover with boiling water, simmer for 5 minutes and drain. Cover again with boiling water. Let stand 5 minutes. Drain and add all other ingredients and cook for 1 hour or until thick. Stir frequently, put in jars and seal. Process in water bath for proper sealing.

Veal Stew with Red Wine

Submitted by Mrs. Ronald Reagan, wife of governor, California

1 1/2 pound boneless veal or beef

6 slices bacon, cut in halves

2 tablespoons bacon or other fat

12 small peeled onions

Cut veal or beef into 12 chunks. Roll each piece in 1/2 slice bacon. Dredge meat lightly with flour. Melt bacon or other fat in heavy skillet. Add meat and onions. Stir ingredients and permit to brown on all sides. Remove from pan. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of fat. Stir in 1 tablespoon of flour. Add and stir until smooth:

1 1/2 cups consomme or stock

1/2 cup dry red wine

Add veal and onions. Simmer ingredients closely covered for 1 1/2 to 2 hours until meat is very tender. Season and serve with a baked dish.

Pedernales River Chili

Submitted by Mrs. Lyndon B. Johnson, wife of President Lyndon B. Johnson

4 pound chili meat

1 large onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic

1 teaspoon ground oregano

1 teaspoon comino (cumin) seed

6 teaspoons chili powder, or more

1 1/2 cups canned whole tomatoes

2 to 6 generous dashes liquid hot pepper sauce

Salt to taste

2 cups hot water

Place meat, onions and garlic in large, heavy fry pan or Dutch oven. Cook until light colored. Add oregano, comino seed, chili powder, tomatoes, hot pepper sauce, salt and hot water. Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer about 1 hour. Skim off fat during cooking.

Chili meat is coarsely ground round steak or well-trimmed chuck meat. If specially ground, ask meat man to use 3/4-inch plate for coarse grind.

Ham Loaf

Submitted by Mrs. A.M. Spradling Jr., wife of Missouri state senator

1 pound cured ham, ground

1 pound lean pork, ground

2 eggs

1 cup milk

1 cup cracker crumbs

Mix and make into a loaf. Put in loaf baking pan. Pour the following sauce over loaf and bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees. Serves 6.

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup vinegar

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 1/2 tablespoons dry mustard

Rita's Spaghetti

Submitted by Edwina Carnahan

The Rita in the recipe's title is Mrs. Thomas Hart Benton. Her cooking skills were the subject of an article years ago in The Kansas City Star. When the late Clementine Paddleford came to Kansas City seeking great cooks, she was directed to Mrs. Benton and was invited to stay for dinner. This spaghetti was on the menu. From the 1969 "Come Into My Kitchen" cookbook.

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, chopped

1 pound pork tenderloin or pork chops, finely cut

1/2 pound mushrooms

1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste

1 can water

1 bay leaf

Salt and pepper

1 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 pound spaghetti

Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed skillet. Add onion and brown. Add meat, cut by hand, not ground. Add mushrooms, tomato paste, water and seasonings. Cover pan, simmer 30 minutes or until pork is tender. Cook spaghetti in boiling salted water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain, pour on sauce, stir to blend. Serve with cheese. Makes 4 portions.

One thing that undoubtedly contributes to making this an outstanding dish is the pork, which is hand cut. At least one reader commented that there was not quite enough sauce to suit her taste, she usually doubled that part of it.

White Chocolate Cake

Submitted by Mrs. Forrest H. Anderson, wife of governor, Montana

1/4 pound white baking chocolate

1/2 cup boiling water

2 cups sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup margarine

4 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup buttermilk

2 1/2 cups cake flour

1/2 cup pecans

1/2 cup coconut

Melt chocolate in boiling water, let cool. Cream sugar and margarine until fluffy. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating after each. Combine with chocolate mixture and vanilla. Alternate buttermilk with flour and baking powder, beating each into batter. Add pecans and coconut. Bake in three 9-inch layer pans in 350 degree oven, 30 to 35 minutes. Frost with white frosting.

Once again it was hard to pull just a few recipes from such a large book, but this can give you a small sampling of what the book has to offer. Have a great week, and until next time, happy cooking.

Susan McClanahan is administrator at the Cape Girardeau Senior Center. Send recipes to her at 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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