Blessed with recipes for Thanksgiving

Wednesday, November 21, 2001



A season of Thanksgiving and truly a time of thanks for all we have been blessed with. At the Senior Center we fixed a bulletin board where our customers could add their thanks list to the board. In reading those this week, it seems that family, friends, health and our freedom in this wonderful country were the most popular items listed.

Our freedom has certainly been brought to the minds of everyone in the last couple of months as national patriotism is at an all time high. Thank God for America and God bless the USA.

Carolyn Thomas of Thebes, Ill., was looking for a recipe for pear relish and we have several to share with her. Jodi Thompson of Jackson, Mo., has answered her request with a few different varieties.

Pear Relish

12 pounds hard pears; about 40, peeled, cored, and quartered

4 green peppers, seeded and quartered

2 pounds onions, peeled and quartered

5 cups white vinegar

4 cups sugar

2 1/2 tablespoons salt

2 tablespoons whole mixed pickling spice

2 tablespoons turmeric

Run pears, onions and peppers through food grinder. Drain off all liquid.

Combine vinegar, sugar, salt, pickling spice and turmeric. Boil 10 minutes.

Add pears, onions, and peppers. Boil 15 minutes. Spoon mixture into hot sterilized jars and seal quickly. This is very good with meats or vegetables.

Yields 8 or 9 pints.

Be sure to follow canning jar instructions for processing times, or the current USDA guidelines for safety.

Veal with Pear Relish

1 (16 ounce) can pears, sliced, in light syrup

1/4 cup raisins, golden

1/4 cup brown sugar, packed

2 tablespoon white vinegar

1 tablespoon onion, minced

1 pound veal cutlets, 1/4 inch thick

1/2 cup bread crumbs, seasoned

Margarine as needed

Drain and dice pears reserving 1/4 cup of the juice. In a small saucepan over medium heat, cook pears, juice, raisins, brown sugar, vinegar, and onion for 5 minutes. Stir occasionally. Keep relish warm until ready to serve. With a meat mallet, pound each cutlet to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut cutlets into 3-by-3 inch pieces. Coat cutlets with bread crumbs. In a 12-inch skillet over medium heat, melt 4 tablespoons butter or margarine. Cook veal cutlets until browned on both sides, about 2 minutes on each side. Remove cutlets to a warmed serving platter; sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve. Spoon relish on top and garnish as desired. Serves about 4.

Perky Pear Relish

8 quarts pears

6 onions

3 red bell peppers

3 green bell peppers

5 cups vinegar

3 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoons pickling spices

1 teaspoons turmeric

3 cups sugar

Grind vegetables. Combine with remaining ingredients; bring to a boil and boil until thickened, about 30 minutes. Seal in pint jars. Makes about 8 pints.

Pear Relish

1 peck pears

2 pound brown sugar

3 onions, chopped

1 pound raisins

2 cups vinegar spices

Pare and chop pears. Combine with other ingredients, adding spices to taste.

Mix thoroughly. Cook slowly, stirring frequently, until thick.

This next recipe is a little different than the usual cranberry relish. It goes wonderfully with poultry and pork and anything else for that matter. We like it so well that I keep bags of cranberries in the freezer so I can make it year around, not just when cranberries are in season. Like any other relish, it is best made ahead and will keep for at least 2-3 weeks in the refrigerator.

Cranberries will be on many tables Thursday as a traditional part of the feast. But this next recipe adds a spicy twist to an old favorite.

Santa Fe Cranberry Relish

1 (l2 ounce) package whole cranberries

3/4 cup sugar

1 medium jalapeno pepper, cut in quarters - you may add more if you like "heat"

1 green onion, cut in quarters

1 teaspoon dried cilantro

1/4 teaspoon cumin

Put all ingredients into food processor. Process until mixture is coarsely chopped. Store in refrigerator at least overnight to blend flavors. Makes about 3 cups.

If you are not going to try making pumpkin pies and would like to have pumpkin as part of your menu, try this cake recipe that is easy to prepare but big on flavor.

Pumpkin Crunch Cake

1 box yellow cake mix

8 ounces pumpkin

1 can evaporated skim milk

1 1/2 stick margarine

1 1/2 cup nuts

1 cup sugar

3 eggs

1 teaspoon cinnamon

Mix eggs, sugar, milk, pumpkin, cinnamon and pour into a 9-by-13-inch pan.

Sprinkle cake mix over top. Put nuts on top and pat in. Drizzle margarine on top.

Bake 55 minutes in 375 degree oven.

For the more ambitious baker, try this delicious cake roll. It is actually not as hard as you might think, and well worth the effort.

Pumpkin Roll with Toffee Cream Filling and Caramel Sauce

3/4 cup cake flour

1 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

3/4 teaspoon ground allspice

6 egg yolks

6 egg whites

1/3 cup white sugar

1/3 cup packed light brown sugar

2/3 cup solid pack pumpkin puree

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup confectioners' sugar for dusting

2 tablespoon dark rum or extract flavoring

1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin

1 cup heavy whipping cream

3 tablespoons confectioners' sugar

10 tablespoons crushed toffee candy

1 (16 ounce) jar caramel ice cream sauce, warmed

1/2 cup crushed toffee candy

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 15-by-10-inch-baking sheet with vegetable oil spray. Sift flour, cinnamon, ginger and allspice into small bowl. Set aside. In a large bowl, beat egg yolks, 1/3 cup white sugar, and 1/3 cup brown sugar until very thick, about 3 minutes, with an electric mixer. On low speed, beat in pumpkin, then flour mixture. Using clean, dry beaters, in a large bowl, beat egg whites and salt until stiff but not dry. Fold egg whites into batter in 3 additions.

Spread into prepared pan. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into cake comes out clean. Place smooth (not terry cloth) kitchen towel on work surface; dust generously with powdered sugar. Cut around pan edges to loosen cake. Turn cake out onto kitchen towel. Fold towel over one long side of cake. Starting at one long side, roll cake up in towel. Arrange cake seam side down and cool completely, about 1 hour.

To make the filling: Pour 2 tablespoons rum into small heavy saucepan and sprinkle gelatin over. Let stand until gelatin softens, about 10 minutes.

Stir over low heat just until gelatin dissolves, then remove from heat. In a large bowl, beat chilled whipping cream and 3 tablespoons powdered sugar until stiff peaks form. Beat in gelatin mixture. Fold in 6 tablespoons English toffee pieces. Unroll cake, sprinkle with 4 tablespoons English toffee pieces. Spread filling over. Starting at one long side and using kitchen towel as aid, roll up cake to enclose filling. Place cake seam side down on platter (can be prepared a day ahead). Cover with foil and refrigerate. Trim ends of cake on slight diagonal. Dust cake with powdered sugar. Spoon some of the warm caramel sauce over top of cake. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup toffee. To serve, cut cake crosswise into 1-inch thick slices. Serve with remaining sauce.

Have a wonderful day sharing thanks with family and friends and as always, 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 the Southeast Missourian staff.

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