Friday, March 26, 2021

Mother's Sesame Seed Dressing v.2.0

 This is my sister Jean's version of our mother's recipe from the 1950's.

In blender:

1/2 cup sugar

3/4 tsp. dry mustard

1 tsp. hot paprika

1/2 tsp. salt

2 tsp Sriracha (or other hot sauce)

3 drops sesame oil

3/4 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

1 tbl. toasted dry minced onion

1 cup olive oil

3/4 cup rice vinegar

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

2 tbl. toasted sesame seeds

Buzz once or twice.

Libby's Pumpkin Roll

From the back of the Libby's pumpkin label:

1/4 cup powdered sugar (to sprinkle on towel)

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup LIBBY'S® 100% Pure Pumpkin
1 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)

1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
6 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Powdered sugar (optional for decoration)

Preheat oven to 375° F. Grease 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pan; line with wax paper. Grease and flour paper. Sprinkle a thin, cotton kitchen towel with 1/4 cup powdered sugar.

Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt in small bowl. Beat eggs and granulated sugar in large mixer bowl until thick. Beat in pumpkin. Stir in flour mixture. Spread evenly into prepared pan. Sprinkle with nuts.

Bake for 13 to 15 minutes or until top of cake springs back when touched. (If using a dark-colored pan, begin checking for doneness at 11 minutes.) Immediately loosen and turn cake onto prepared towel. Carefully peel off paper. Roll up cake and towel together, starting with narrow end. Cool on wire rack.

Beat cream cheese, 1 cup powdered sugar, butter and vanilla extract in small mixer bowl until smooth. Carefully unroll cake. Spread cream cheese mixture over cake. Reroll cake. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour. Sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving, if desired.

Sunday, January 17, 2021

TKO’s Unusual Cornbread

This recipe comes  from my friend, Tom, who lives in British Columbia and who also gave me the recipe for Tallerone, which appeared on this blog in 2008. He also sent along this link to a fascinating article called The Real Reason Sugar Has No Place in Cornbread. If you read it, you may want to make this cornbread in a heavy black iron frying pan.

Tom says:

Somewhat cake-like, fine textured, moist.

Oven 400F

9x9” cake pan, oiled

Dry ingredients

1 C corn flour

½ C cornmeal

3/4 C flour (unbleached all-purpose, whole wheat, bread flour, whatever) 

2 T sugar (optional)

1 T baking powder

½ t salt

Wet ingredients

2 eggs

½ C oil

1 C yogurt (I use thick “Greek” style; others use buttermilk)

1/3 cup “milk” (cow, soy, rice, almond, oat, whatever)

½ C green onions, diced/chopped

Add drys to wets

Bake for about 45 minutes

Friday, January 15, 2021

Recipes For Pandemic Cooking

This is an end-of-2020 list of recipes from the New York Times that sounded so good and so different from what I've been cooking. 19 Recipes Our Food Staff Cooked on Repeat in 2020.

The list includes yummy-sounding dishes like Baked Tofu with Peanut Sauce and Coconut Lime Rice, Cumin-Lime Shrimp with Ginger, and Salmon Broiled in a Cast Iron Skillet. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Lemon Ricotta Pancakes

 Mix together:

2 eggs

1 cup ricotta cheese

3 tbl. vegetable oil

1 tsp. vanilla

Juice and grated rind of one lemon


1 cup flour

2 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

2 tsp. sugar

Add the sifted ingredients for the ricotta mixture, thinning the batter with up to a cup of milk until it is to your liking. Cook on a lightly buttered griddle. 

Green Pea Soup

Good old Campbell's Green Pea Soup in the red and white can has always been my ultimate comfort food. Now the company has discontinued it, so I guess not enough people shared my love of it. This recipe makes a fine substitute and I'm sure contains way less salt than the original canned version. 

You can make this soup on the stove or in the instant pot. Soak the peas before if cooking on top of the stove, but you can skip this step with the instant pot. 

2 cups split green peas, picked through and rinsed until water runs clear. Soak for 4 hours to overnight if cooking on the stove; skip this step if cooking in the instant pot

2 tbl. vegetable oil or butter

One large onion chopped

1 cup chopped celery

1-1/2  cups chopped carrots

1 clove garlic, chopped

1/2 tsp. dried thyme

A few grinds of black pepper

1 to 1-1/2 quarts chicken stock

Fresh lemon juice to taste

Saute the chopped vegetables in the oil or butter until the onions are soft. You can do this right in the instant pot using the saute function or on top of the stove, your choice. Add the peas, thyme, pepper, and chicken stock to cover. Cook for an hour and a half on top of the stove OR if using the instant pot choose the soup/broth function and cook under pressure, then let the pot sit to release the pressure naturally.

Remove the bay leaf, add lemon juice to taste, correct seasonings. 

I used an immersion blender to make a smooth soup. 

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Pandemic Cooking: Cook With the Ingredients You Have on Hand

I just came across a site called Fridge to Table ( that lets you search recipes by ingredient and type of diet (vegan, vegetarian, none, etc). This seems like a pretty handy approach at this time in our history, when we are avoiding grocery shopping as much as possible and cooking with pantry ingredients that we have on hand.

Of course we have always been able to find recipes online by searching an ingredient or two, but I found myself with a cup of freshly squeezed lime juice and when I searched for recipes just by googling "cup of lime juice" I found a variety of limeade recipes, but not much else.

Using the Fridge to Table site, "lime juice" as an ingredient gave me lots of recipes for ceviche, guacamole, fajitas, chicken, salmon, quinoa, shrimp, etc. The recipe results could then be sorted by course (breakfast, lunch, etc.), source (where the recipes came from), number of ingredients, and cook time--plus giving me the option to exclude certain ingredients or tailor the dish to a particular diet.

Perhaps I'll be making some Honey Lime Turkey Fajitas, which will leave me with just another 3/4 cup of lime juice to use in newly found recipes.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Roasted Grapes

We are staying at home because of the coronavirus outbreak. Since we are depending on a younger family member for grocery shopping we don't want to waste any food.

Because tired old grapes can't be fed to dogs, cats, or chickens, I googled "what to do with shriveled grapes" and found recipes for roasted grapes. They are delicious, as you can see from the crowd that gathered while I tried them for the first time. (Of course, dogs and cats may NOT eat grapes, but they wanted to convince me otherwise).

No more wasted grapes! 


Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Wash and dry grapes; remove all stems. Toss them with some olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Place on a foil-lined cookie sheet.

Roast for 35 minutes or so, stirring two or three times.

Cool and serve. I had mine on toast that was spread with cream cheese. Next time I might try peanut butter, which is also recommended.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Butterscotch Sauce

For the original version and photos, see Here are my pared down directions.

4 tbl. butter
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup heavy cream

1 tsp. vanilla

Melt butter in saucepan. Add sugar, salt, and cream, stir well to mix. Bring to a boil and simmer for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, add vanilla. Will thicken more as it cools. Store in a covered jar in the refrigerator.