Mixing things up with the recipe swap

Sunday, June 9, 2013

For many months I tried to do this recipe column with a theme making all of the recipes a variation of a popular recipe. It seemed to be very popular and I received many comments that people liked the recipe variations. Now, the past few weeks I have just done a variety of recipes, whatever you send in or whatever I find that sounds interesting. Let me know what you like to see in this column and of course, send in your favorite recipes to share with other avid recipe collectors.

Thelma Brothers comes to the senior center everyday and she is such a joy to all of us. I have often called her the senior center cheerleader, as she loves the center and she tells everyone how much she enjoys coming each day. Recently she gave me this recipe, and it is a very rich dessert that can be made quickly and easily.

Crunchy Chocolate Peanut Stix

1 box rectangular buttery crackers (Club)

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1/2 cup milk

1 1/4 cups light brown sugar

1/4 cup granulated sugar

2 cups crushed honey graham crackers

1 1/4 cups milk chocolate chips

1 cup peanut butter chips

* Line a 9x13-inch baking pan with foil, leaving a few extra inches on each end. Line bottom with about 25 rectangular buttery crackers.

* In medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium high heat. Add milk, brown sugar and granulated sugar.

* Bring to a simmer and gradually stir in finely crushed honey graham crackers. Simmer, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes.

* Pour 1 cup of the mixture over the crackers and spread evenly. Place another layer of crackers in pan and spread remaining cup of sugar mixture over crackers. Top with another layer of crackers.

* Place milk chocolate chips and peanut butter chips in a medium bowl over a small amount of simmering water in a medium saucepan over low heat. Stir until smooth. Spread evenly over top layer of crackers.

* Refrigerate for at least 1 hour until set. Carefully lift out of pan and place on a cutting board. Cut into 1x4-inch bars with a serrated knife.

Zucchini Parmesan Crisps

1 pound zucchini or squash (about 2 medium-sized)

1/4 heaping cup shredded Parmesan cheese

1/4 heaping cup Panko breadcrumbs

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Freshly ground pepper, to taste

* Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line two baking sheets with foil and spray lightly with vegetable spray.

* Slice zucchini or squash into 1/4 inch-thick rounds. Toss rounds with oil, coating well. In a wide bowl or plate, combine breadcrumbs, parmesan, salt and pepper.

* Place rounds in parmesan-breadcrumb mixture, coating both sides of each round, pressing to adhere. The mixture will not completely cover each round, but provides a light coating on each side.

* Place rounds in a single layer on baking sheets. Sprinkle any remaining breadcrumb mixture over the rounds.

* Bake for about 22 to 25 minutes. You can dip in warmed Marinara sauce, if desired.

Crispy Cheddar Chicken

2 pounds chicken tenders or 4 large chicken breasts

2 sleeves round buttery crackers

1/4 teaspoons salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1/2 cup whole milk

3 cups cheddar cheese, grated

1 teaspoon dried parsley


1 (10 ounce) can cream of chicken soup

2 tablespoons sour cream

2 tablespoons butter

* Crush crackers. If using chicken breasts and not tenders, cut each chicken breast into 3 large pieces.

* Pour the milk, cheese and cracker crumbs into 3 separate small pans. Toss the salt and pepper into the cracker crumbs and stir the mixture around to combine.

* Dip each piece of chicken into the milk and then the cheese. Press the cheese into the chicken with your fingers. Then press the cheesy coated chicken into the cracker crumbs and press it in.

* Spray a 9×13-inch pan with cooking spray and lay the chicken inside the pan. Sprinkle the dried parsley over the chicken. Cover the pan with tin foil and bake at 400 degrees for 35 minutes.

* Remove the tin foil, bake for an additional 10-15 minutes, or until the edges of the chicken are golden brown and crispy.

* In a medium sized sauce pan combine the cream of chicken soup, sour cream and butter with a whisk. Stir it over medium high heat until the sauce is nice and hot. Serve over the chicken.

Strawberry Punch

This punch is so refreshing, once you try it, you may never forget it.

1 can (46 ounces) pineapple juice, chilled

2 1/4 cups water

3/4 cup thawed pink lemonade concentrate

3/4 cup sugar

1 quart strawberry ice cream

2 1/2 quarts ginger ale, chilled

* In a punch bowl, combine the first four ingredients. Add ice cream; stir gently. Add ginger ale; stir gently. Serve immediately. Yield: 6 quarts.

7-Up Biscuits

4 cups buttermilk baking mix

1 cup sour cream

1 cup 7-Up soda

1/2 cup butter, melted

* Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Mix buttermilk baking mix, sour cream and 7-Up. Dough will be very soft.

* Knead and fold dough until coated with your baking mix. Pat dough out and cut biscuits using a round biscuit or cookie cutter.

* Melt butter in bottom of cookie sheet pan or 9x13 casserole dish. Place biscuits on top of melted butter and bake for 12-15 minutes or until brown at 425 degrees.

Grilled Potatoes and Onion

Jodi Thompson of Jackson shares two recipes for grilled potatoes that sound very appetizing. While you have your summer grill fired up, add some potatoes to your menu.

4 potatoes, sliced

1 red onion, sliced

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground black pepper

4 tablespoons butter

* Preheat a grill for indirect heat. Measure out 2 or 3 sheets of aluminum foil large enough to easily wrap the vegetables, and layer one on top of the other.

* Place potatoes and onion in the center, sprinkle with salt and pepper and dot with butter.

* Wrap into a flattened square and seal the edges. Place aluminum wrapped package over medium heat, and cover.

* Cook for approximately 30 minutes, turning once. Serve hot off the grill. Makes 4 servings.

Grilled Rosemary- Onion Potatoes

6 medium baking potatoes, cut into 3/4-inch pieces (2 pounds)

1 medium onion, finely chopped (1/2 cup)

3 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil

1 tablespoon dried rosemary leaves

1 1/2 teaspoons chopped thyme

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

* Heat 1 inch water (salted if desired) to boiling in saucepan. Add potatoes to boiling water. Cook 5 to 10 minutes or until potatoes are crisp-tender; drain.

* Heat grill to medium heat. Mix onion, oil, rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper in large bowl. Add potatoes; toss to coat.

* Wrap potato mixture in large sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil. Cover and grill 4 to 5 inches from heat about 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork.

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. 63702. Recipes published have not been kitchen-tested by Southeast Missourian staff.

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