Fall recipes and family traditions

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

As temperatures turn cooler, I am amazed at how many people are looking into their recipe files and telling me about a new recipe or an old forgotten one they have found. Over the past several days nearly everywhere I have gone conversations have turned to recipes and what people are making for different occasions. Although they don't often have the recipes with them, it is still fun to hear stories about how families spend time together and about food traditions.

Amish Oatmeal Whoopie Pies

Nancy Kester of Cape Girardeau requested the recipes for small hand-held oatmeal pies with a cream filling. Although there are thousands to choose from, I liked this one the best.

2 cups light brown sugar, packed

3/4 cup butter, softened

2 large eggs

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cups flour

2 cups quick-cooking oatmeal, not instant

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

3 tablespoons boiling water

For the filling:

1 egg whites

1 tablespoon vanilla

2 tablespoons milk

2 cups powdered sugar

1/4 cup vegetable shortening

For oatmeal cookie mixture:

Cream butter, sugar and eggs. Sift together flour, salt and baking powder and add to creamed mixture. Add cinnamon and oatmeal. Mix well. Add soda to hot water and add to batter. Mix well. Drop by tablespoon onto greased cookie sheet. Bake 19 to 15 minutes in 325 degree oven.

For the filling:

Combine egg white, vanilla, milk and 1 cup of powdered sugar. Cream together very well. Beat in mixing bowl about 10 minutes. Add rest of ingredients and beat an additional 2-3 minutes. Put filling between 2 cookies. Wrap each whoopie pie cookie in plastic wrap.

Black Bean Chili

Cheryl Mothes has been sending me a vegetarian recipe each week to pass along. This is her favorite recipe for this week.

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 cup chopped onions

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 green bell pepper, diced

1 box (4) Spicy Black Bean Veggie Burgers, thawed

1 can black beans, rinsed

2 cans diced tomatoes with green chiles

1 cup frozen corn or 1 can of corn

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 tablespoon cocoa

1 teaspoon oregano

In a large soup pot, heat the oil over medium high heat and add onion, garlic and bell pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes until softened. Crumble up the veggie burgers, and add it with all other ingredients to the pot. Bring to a boil. Serve in bowls. Cornmeal muffins are a great side.

For a change, once chili is heated thoroughly, pour into a glass baking dish, prepare cornmeal muffin mix, pour on top, and bake as directed.

The chili bakes into the bottom of the muffin mix and is s really tasty tamale pie.

Overnight Apple Butter

My mother's cousins gather each year to make apple butter in a large copper kettle over an open fire, using the long-handled stirring paddle that her cousin made. Not everyone wants to cook 6 bushels of apples at a time or has the means to do so. This is an easier version for you to make in a small batch.

1 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup honey

1/4 cup apple cider

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/8 teaspoon ground mace

10 medium apples, peeled, cored, and cut into large chunks (about 2 1/2 pounds)

Combine all ingredients in a 5-quart electric slow cooker. Cover and cook on low 10 hours or until apples are very tender. Place a large fine-mesh sieve over a bowl; spoon one-third of apple mixture into sieve. Press mixture through sieve using the back of a spoon or ladle. Discard pulp. Repeat procedure with remaining apple mixture. Return apple mixture to slow cooker. Cook, uncovered, on high 1 1/2 hours or until mixture is thick, stirring occasionally. Spoon into a bowl. Cover and chill up to a week.

*** Apple Pancakes

This time of year everything seems to include apples. The stores are loaded with apples so I thought in keeping with that, I would include this delicious recipe for pancakes and an easy syrup to serve on top.

1/2 cup apple cider

3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar, divided

1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch

1/2 cup whole-wheat pastry flour

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 large egg

1 large egg white

1/2 cup nonfat buttermilk

1 medium apple, peeled and finely diced, about 1 cup

4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

1 teaspoon canola oil, divided

For the syrup: Combine cider, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, lemon juice and cornstarch in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking, and cook until thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Set aside.

For the pancakes: Whisk whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda and the remaining 1 tablespoon brown sugar in a small bowl. Whisk egg, egg white and buttermilk in a large bowl. Stir in the dry ingredients, apples and bacon until just combined. The batter will be thick. Brush a large nonstick skillet with 1/2 teaspoon oil and place over medium heat until hot. Cooking 4 at a time, use about 1/4 cup batter for each pancake and gently spread it to make them about 3 inches in diameter. Cook until the edges are dry and bubbles begin to form, about 2 minutes. Flip the pancakes and cook until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes more. Repeat with the remaining oil and batter, reducing the heat as necessary to prevent burning. Reheat the cider syrup, if desired, and serve with the pancakes.

Have a wonderful week, and until next time, happy cooking.

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

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: