Welcome fall into your homes with these recipes

Sunday, September 30, 2012

The official calendar season of fall has arrived, and I have to say I am ready. After the extremely long, hot, dry summer, I am ready for cooler weather, rain and the wonderful foods that fall brings to us. So, over the next couple of weeks, we will be concentrating on those amazing foods that welcome fall into our homes. If you have a favorite recipe you enjoy making this time of year, please send it in so it can be included in this column.

Home Canned Apple Pie Filling

There seems to be an abundant crop of apples this year. I have already made several crisps and now this recipe turned up at the senior center from Lorene Wood, when our head cook, Faye Sandusky, hauled in buckets and buckets of apples for people to take and cook with. It sounds easy enough and tasty. It will be great to have on hand this winter when the snow is flying.

8 to 9 pounds firm apples

10 cups water

4 1/2 cups sugar

1 cup quick cooking tapioca (Minute brand)

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

3 tablespoons bottled lemon juice

2 to 3 drops yellow food coloring, optional

Core, peel and slice apples. Combine water, sugar, tapioca, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and lemon juice in a large pan. Stir and cook on medium high heat until bubbly and thickened. Boil for an additional 2 to 3 minutes. Add apples to mixture, bring to a boil and cook at boiling for 1 minute. Do not remove mixture from burner. Fill jars to 1-inch of top. Adjust lids. Place in boiling water bath. Process pints or quarts for 25 minutes. Yields 6 to 7 quarts.

Ina's Corn Salad

Ina Winstead made this salad for a recent church supper, and I heard it was delicious. A friend of mine wanted the recipe, so I called Ina and she graciously gave me the recipe. And yes, it is a keeper -- you will certainly want to add this to your recipe files.

2 (15-ounce) cans whole-kernel corn, drained

2 cups grated cheddar cheese

1 cup real mayonnaise

1 cup chopped green pepper

1/2 cup chopped red onion

5 teaspoons olive oil

Salt and pepper, to taste

1 tablespoon lime juice

1 1/2 cups diced and seeded chopped tomatoes, or cherry tomatoes, cut in half

1 (10 1/2-ounce) package Chili Cheese Fritos corn chips

Combine all ingredients except tomatoes and Fritos. Refrigerate; just before serving, stir in tomatoes and Fritos. Serve immediately.

No-Peek Stew

As soon as the weather turned cooler, I heard people taking about making chili and stew. In one day I heard mention of chili three different times, then Rob Weeks walked into my office with a food storage container full of piping hot chili. It was delicious and a nice addition to our evening family meal. I will share a popular beef stew recipe with you here today.

1 pound beef stew meat or 1 pound roast cut into small, bite-size pieces

2 carrots, finely chopped

2 to 3 potatoes, cubed

3 celery ribs, finely sliced

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

2/3 cup water

1 (10 3/4-ounce) can of tomato soup

2 tablespoons dry tapioca

Combine all ingredients in slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours. Or, place all ingredients in a tight fitting Dutch oven or casserole dish, putting raw beef on the bottom of the baking dish. Cover and bake 5 hours at 250 degrees. Serve with freshly baked bread.

Parmesan Crusted Potato Wedges

A friend of mine emailed this recipe to me and it is very good and a nice change as a side potato dish.

1/2 cup butter, melted

1/2 cup boxed cornflake crumbs

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1/8 teaspoon onion powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 pounds white russet potatoes, cut into wedges

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place melted butter in a shallow dish. In another shallow dish, combine remaining ingredients except potatoes, mix well. Dip potato wedges in melted butter then in crumb mixture, turning to coat completely; place on baking sheets in a single layer and pour any remaining melted butter on top. Bake 30 to 40 minutes, or until potatoes are tender through.

Chewy Peanut Butter Caramel Bars

I was looking for a recipe recently on the Internet and this recipe popped up with a beautiful enlarged photograph and I thought "I want that." So, I copied off the recipe and here it is for you to try. I can only imagine that a very small piece would be plenty.

Nonstick cooking spray

1 package refrigerated sugar cookies

1/2 cup butter

1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

1 cup packed light brown sugar

1 cup granulated sugar

1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs

1 (11.5-ounce) bag milk chocolate baking chips

1/2 cup good quality creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup finely chopped dry roasted peanuts

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 13-by-9-inch pan (dark pan not recommended) with no-stick cooking spray or line with nonstick foil. Evenly arrange cookie rounds in pan. Bake 24 to 26 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool 15 minutes on cooling rack. Meanwhile, in 2-quart heavy saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in condensed milk, brown sugar and granulated sugar until blended. Add graham cracker crumbs; mix well (mixture will be thick). Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low; cook 5 minutes, stirring constantly, or until slightly thickened. Pour caramel mixture over warm cookie crust, spreading evenly. In medium microwaveable bowl, microwave chocolate chips on High 1 minute to 1 minute 20 seconds, stirring every 30 seconds, until smooth. Stir in peanut butter until blended. Spread evenly over caramel layer. Sprinkle with chopped peanuts. Refrigerate 1 hour or until chocolate is set. For bars, cut into 6 rows by 6 rows. Store covered in refrigerator.

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 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.

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