The Life of a Blogger: A Truly Never-Ending Story: Chapter Fifteen–Family Recipes

The following recipes have long been a staple of My family. Some are over a 100 years old while others have been more recently acquired. Many have been gleamed by word of mouth and some by experimentation. Many of the recipes were lacking in accurate measures, of these I have done my best to give supply those measures based on taste testing the recipes. My mother cooked by taste, with no actual measurements written down, so it was with some difficulty that I was able to complete them. My mother just passed away in 2020, and this chapter is my attempt to make sure that her recipes don’t die with her. Of all the things that she enjoyed doing cooking and baking for her family were her passions. She had more recipes, but I am afraid they have died with her. This Chapter is Dedicated to my mother.

The following recipes are posted in no particular order, I am doing this to provide more fun in the exploration process. Because that is how it happened in real life. I have put an * by the recipes I believe to have originated with my family

Bean Soup

Ingredients

½ package of Acini de Pepe pasta

1-15 oz can of kidney beans

4 strips of bacon-cooked and chopped

1 celery stalk-chopped

1 small onion-chopped

1 clove garlic-crushed

1 T parsley

1 tsp basil

28 oz can chopped tomatoes undrained

6 c water

1 bullion cube chicken

Directions

Place kidney beans, bacon, celery, onion, garlic, parsley, basil, tomatoes and water in large pan.  Bring to a boil add bullion cube, salt, pepper to taste.

Cook and cover, slow heat for about 1-½ hours.

Raise heat add Acini de Pepe pasta.

Cook for about 6 minutes.

Beignets

Ingredients

1 c whole milk

¼ c + 1 T sugar, divided

¼ c vegetable oil

1 tsp table salt

3 ½ – 4 c all-purpose flour

1 scant T dry active yeast

½ c warm water

1 egg

Peanut oil for frying

Directions

Small saucepan combine milk, ¼ c sugar, vegetable oil and salt.  Heat over medium heat until small bubbles form around the edges of pan.  Remove from heat.

While milk is heating, combine yeast and 1 T of sugar with ½ water.  Let stand for 10 minutes or until very bubbly.

In bowl of stand mixer, combine heated milk and 2 c flour.  Mix, scraping bowl occasionally until smooth (2-3 minutes).

Add egg and mix until well combined.  Add yeast mixture.  Add enough flour to make soft dough that slightly sticks to your finger.

Place dough in a bowl sprayed with non-stick cooking spray and cover with a piece of sprayed plastic wrap and refrigerate dough up to 1 day.

Roll dough out on lightly floured surface.  Roll into large rectangle about ¼”, using a pizza wheel cut dough into 3” x 4” rectangles.

Slightly separate dough and cover with clean cloth.  Allow to rise for 30 minutes.

When dough is 15 minutes in.

Heat 2-3” of peanut oil to 325*, fry dough about 90 seconds to 2 minutes per side.

* Bologna Salad

2 packages of ground bologna

2-4 boiled eggs-chopped

Mayo-to taste

Baby Sweet Gherkin’s

Mix together, refrigerate and serve with bread as a sandwhich, or on crackers.

*Brown Sugar Cake

1 c white sugar

1 ¾ c milk

2 c flour

2 tsp baking powder

Pinch of salt

1 egg

Mix together put into a 9 x 13 pan.  Cook cake at 350* for 20-30 minutes.

3 c brown sugar

1 ½ c boiling water

Add the brown sugar to the boiling water, and then pour over the top of the cake.  It will go to the bottom as the cake cools.

Cabbage & Noodles with Bacon

Ingredients

1 head of Cabbage, chopped

1 pound of Bacon

1 large onion, chopped

2-3 large handfuls of egg noodles

Das of Black pepper

Directions

In a large skillet over medium-high heat, cook the bacon until crisp.  Remove from the pan and drain on paper towels, then break into bite-sized pieces.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to boil for egg noodles.  Add the noodles and cook until done.  Drain the noodles and set aside.

Drain some of the bacon fat from the pan, reserving enough to cook the onions.  Add the chopped onion to the pan and cook for about 1-2 minutes, or until the onions begin to soften.  Add the cabbage to the skillet and cook until tender, stirring occasionally.  When the cabbage is tender, add the egg noodles and bacon mixing thoroughly. 

Season with Black Pepper and serve immediately.

*Corn Chowder

1 lb of bacon-cooked

1-2 diced onions

1 green pepper diced

1 red pepper diced

4-5 potatoes diced

3 cans cream style corn

3 cans evaporated milk

2 Polska Kielbasa

Fry bacon, set aside. Sautee onions and peppers in bacon grease.

Dice potatoes and cook until tender.

Combine all ingredients and bring to a boil.

*Michigan Sauce

2 lb ground chuck

1 onion-chopped

3 (+/-) cans tomato paste

2 ½ T (+/-) chili powder

2 ½ T (+/-) French’s mustard

4 T (+/-) sugar

¼ tsp salt

Add meat and onions and brown.  Break meat up into small pieces. 

Once meat and onions are cooked add remaining ingredients, 3 (+/-) cans of water.

Mix together and simmer of about 1 – 2 hours stirring frequently.

*SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS

MEATBALLS

2 Pounds Ground Chuck

2 Eggs

1 Cup Bread Crumbs

½ Cup Milk

2 Green/Red Peppers – chopped

10 oz Grated Cheese

Garlic Powder

Parsley-few pinches

Basil-few pinches

Mix together with hands, shape into meatballs, and cook in large sauté pan.

SPAGHETTI SAUCE

5 Cans of Tomato Sauce

6 Cans of Tomato Paste

½ Cup Water

2 Green/Red Pepper – chopped

2-4 oz of Grated Cheese

¼ t Baking Soda

Garlic Powder

Oregeno-big pinches

Basil-big pinches

Parsley-big pinches

3 Bay Leaves

2 T Sugar

Mix together in large pot.  Bring to a simmer for 1 hour, then place Meatballs in and simmer for another 2 hours.

Shrimp Boil 2-100 Quart Kettles

Ingredients per Kettle

3 Old Bay Spice bags

½ box of salt (2 lbs)

½ container of Cayanne pepper (8 oz)

4 onions quartered

2 bunches of celery

12.5 lbs potatoes

13 sausage

40-50 ears of corn

15 lbs of shrimp

Onions, celery, potatoes boil for 15-20 minutes.

Corn and sausage let boil for 15-20 more minutes.

*X-mas Punch

1 gallon Hawaiian Punch

2 cans of Frozen Punch

½ gallon of Orange Juice

1 2L bottle of Canada Dry Ginger-Ale

1 can of Dole Pineapple Juice

2 jars of maraschino cherries. Place into a large punch bowl, or a large stockpot.  Best if refrigerated prior to serving.

Pepper Steak and Noodles

Ingredients

¼ c butter

1 ½ lb beef, cube steak-cut into strips

1/8 tsp garlic powder

1/3 c chopped onion

1-2 green peppers-sliced

1 can tomatoes

1 T cornstarch

2 T water

4 T soy sauce

1 tsp sugar

½ tsp salt

3 c wide noodles

1 c shredded cheddar cheese

Directions

In skillet melt butter, add beef and sprinkle with garlic powder.  Sautee stirring occasionally, until browned.  Remove meat from skillet.

Add onions and green pepper and sauté two minutes.  Return meat to skillet along with tomatoes and bullion paste. 

Blend together cornstarch, water, soy sauce, sugar and salt.  Add to meat and peppers, stirring constantly, until thickened.

Prepare noodles.

*Scalloped Corn

1 can cream style corn

4 saltine crackers-crushed

Big hand full of crushed corn flakes

Salt

Pepper

1/3 to ½ can of milk

Casserole dish with 1 beaten egg.

Oven to 350* for 20-30 minutes.

Zucchini Bread

3 eggs

1 c oil

2 ¼ c sugar

3 c flour

2-3 c zucchini-shredded

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

2 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven 350*F. Butter 2 loaf pans.

Beat eggs, oil, add sugar and vanilla, mix in zucchini and dry ingredients.

Bake for 55 minutes.

*Sourdough Hotcakes

2 c flour

2 c warm water

1 package of dry yeast

Mix ingredients well and place in a warm spot overnight.

By morning the starter will be ready for use.  The mixture will now be covered with small bubbles, pleasant yeasty odor.

Into that bowl add:

2 eggs

1 tsp salt

1 T sugar

1 tsp baking soda

Blend in all ingredients and beat with a fork.

Cook on a hot griddle with oil.

Rib Ticklin’ BBQ Sauce

1 ½ c Karo syrup

½ c ketchup

½ c finely chopped onion

¼ c cider vinegar

¼ c prepared mustard

¼ c Worcestershire sauce

In saucepan stir together all ingredients.  Stirring frequently bring to boil, reduce heat and boil gently 15 minutes until thickened.

*Pumpkin Pie Filling

Of course you need to have pie crusts already for the filling

2 eggs

Cinnamon

Nutmeg

Salt

2 c Heaping packed of brown sugar

Libby’s Pumpkin Pie (big can)

1 ¼ c (+/-) milk Mix together

Classic Crisco Pie Crust Recipe

INGREDIENTS

SINGLE-CRUST

  • 1/3 C. all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 C. cold Crisco® All-Vegetable Shortening
  • 3 to 6 Tbsps. ice cold water

DOUBLE-CRUST

  • 2 C. all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 C. cold Crisco® All-Vegetable Shortening
  • 4 to 8 Tbsps. ice cold water

DEEP-DISH DOUBLE-CRUST

  • 2/3 C. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 C. cold Crisco® All-Vegetable Shortening OR 6 to 10 Tbsps. ice cold water

DIRECTIONS

  1. STIR flour and salt in large bowl until blended. Cut shortening into flour mixture using pastry blender or fork until shortening pieces are the size of peas. Gradually add just enough water, 1 Tbsp. at a time, stirring with fork just until dough holds together and forms a smooth ball.
  2. SHAPE dough into a ball for single pie crust. Divide dough in half and shape into two balls for double crust pie. Flatten into 1/2-inch thick disk(s). Wrap disk(s) in plastic wrap. Chill 30 minutes or up to 2 days.
  3. ROLL dough on lightly floured surface, rolling from center outward. For 9-inch pie plate, roll into an 11-inch circle. For 9 1/2-inch deep-dish pie plate, roll into a 12-inch circle. Transfer dough to pie plate.
  4. For SINGLE-CRUST pie, fold edge under and press to form a standing rim. Flute edge as desired. Chill until ready to use.
  5. For DOUBLE-CRUST pie, roll disk for bottom crust, trimming edges of dough even with outer edge of pie plate. Fill unbaked pie crust according to recipe directions. Roll out remaining dough disk. Place dough over filled pie crust. Trim edges of dough leaving a 3/4-inch overhang. Fold top edge under bottom crust. Press edges together to seal. Flute edges as desired. Cut several 1/2-inch slits in top crust to vent steam. Bake according to specific recipe directions.
  6. HEAT oven to 425°F. Thoroughly prick bottom and sides of unbaked pie crust with fork. Bake on lowest rack in oven 15 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely on wire rack before filling.

Crow’s Nest

Ingredients

4 baking apples

1 box of bisquick mix

3 pads of butter

1/2 tablespoon of sugar

Directions

Slice apples and place in a round glass cake dish or large pie plate

Cover with Bisquick and milk mixed together and Bake @350 degrees

Take out of oven and flip upside down and then add 3 pads of butter and 1/2 tablespoon of nutmeg and 3/4 Cups of sugar.

Lightly mix until sugar melts.

*Homemade Whipped Cream

Ingredients

1/2 pint of heavy cream

1/2 tablespoon of of vanilla

1/2 cup of sugar

Directions

whip heavy cream and add vanilla and sugar and whip till achieve nice fluffy consistency

*Mom’s Turkey Dressing

Ingredients

1/2 loaf of dried bread slices

1 tablespoon of sage

1/4 cup of chopped onions

1/2 tablespoon of salt

1/4 teaspoon of pepper

1 cup of broth from turkey giblets

1/2 cup of water

Directions

In big bowl break up dried bread slices, add sage, chopped onions, salt, pepper, broth from giblets and cut up giblets and add water to soak bread. Stuff turkey and add remaining stuffing in water surrounding turkey.

*Homemade Apple Sauce

Ingredients

5 lbs of mcintosh apples (note you can use other apples if you have a preference, just don’t use Red Delicious apples)

5 tablespoons of sugar (this depends on the level of sweetness you prefer, it also depends on the type of apples you use as well)

1 dash of salt

1/2 tablespoon of nutmeg

Directions

peel and cut apples and place in cooking pan with high sides. This recipe is subject to taste, some people like apple sauce that is a little chunky., which is typical of homemade applesauce. This is what gives it the texture that separates it from store bought apple sauce. Add sugar again it will depend on the apples you use and how sweet you like your apples sauce. Once you dial it in you will never want toe eat any other kind of apple sauce. Add a dash of salt and your nutmeg. Start under low setting on the stove and stir. The original recipe was written for an open fire, how quaint is that?

*Rice Pudding

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups of white rice

5 eggs

2 1/2 tablespoons of sugar

2 3/4 cups of milk

3 dashes of salt

1/2 cup of raisins

Directions

cook rice in boiling water for 30 minutes water, add water to keep pan full

add 5 whipped eggs in a separate bowl and add cooked rice

add vanilla, milk, sugar, salt and raisins

bake on top rack in oven at 425 degrees for 1 hour.

BLACKEBERRY PIE


2 cans of blackberries (pour 1 can in a bowl with juice & then drain juice from 2nd can & discard, pour remainder in bowl)
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
2 dashes of salt
Mix well & pour in pie shell. Bake at 400 for 45 minutes.

CHRISTMAS COOKIES


***Creamed 1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla

***Sift 1 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
Stir into creamed mixture
Makes 3 dozens. Roll dough onto a log and chill for 1 hour.
Roll out thin on floured board. Cut with cookie cutter. Placed on lightly greased baking sheet. Bake at 350F for 6-8 minutes.

*HOMEMADE FROSTING


Sift 3 cups of confectionary sugar
1 stick butter
1 tsp vanilla
2 dashes of salt
3 tbsp milk
Beat butter with an electric mixer until creamy. Sprinkle salt over butter and stir again to combine.
Gradually, about ½ cup at a time, add powdered sugar, waiting until each cup is completely mixed before adding more.
With mixer on medium-low speed, add milk, one tablespoon at a time. Once ingredients are well incorporated, gradually increase speed to high and beat for about 30 seconds.
Add vanilla extract and stir well.
Pipe or spread frosting over cooled cupcakes. Top with sprinkles, if desired. This frosting will be fine at room temperature for 2 days or refrigerated in an airtight container for about a week.

*HOMEMADE FUDGE


2 c sugar
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp heaping cocoa
1/4 c milk
2 tbsp butter
Combine all ingredients and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Let bubble and boil for about 10 minutes then remove from heat. Add 2 tbsp butter and stir well until amost cool or thickens. The more you stir, the smoother the fudge. Pour into the prepared pan and spread out with a rubber spatula. Refrigerate until set, about 2 hours. Remove from pan and cut into small pieces for serving. Store in the fridge.

*MOLASSES COOKIES


Ingredients

1/2 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup molasses
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp nutmeg
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla
3 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder

Directions


Cream shortening and sugar and add eggs, beat for 2 min. Add remaining ingredients mixing lightly. Shape dough into balls. Pour granulated sugar into a small bowl. Scoop dough out and shape into balls nearly the size of a golf ball. Roll each dough ball through granulated sugar then transfer to baking sheets spacing 2-inches apart. Bake one sheet at a time in preheated oven 9–11 minutes until cookies are puffed and appear just lightly under-baked in the center.

PINEAPPLE UPSIDE-DOWN CAKE

Ingredients


2 tbsp butter, melted
1/2 c brown sugar
5 slices canned pineapple
5 cherries
1/2 c shortening
1 cup hot water
1 3/4 c flour
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 t cinnamon
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 c molasses
1 egg unbeaten
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder

Directions


Combine butter and brown sugar in an 8-inch square pan. Arrange pineapple & cherries in a pan. Blend together shortening and sugar creaming until light & fluffy. Beat in molasses, stir in egg and water. Sift together remaining ingredients. Beat at a slow speed.
Spoon the batter over the pineapples, carefully as not to shift or move the fruits. Using a spatula, spread and smoothen it evenly.
Bake in a preheated 350 F oven for about 45 to 50 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Remove from the oven and run a small spatula around the cake to loosen.
Place a serving platter over the baking pan and using hand mittens, carefully invert and turn out the cake onto the platter.

*SHORTCAKES


2 1/3 cup Bisquick
3 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp melter butter
1/2 cup milk

Heat oven to 450F. Mix all ingredients with fork to a soft dough. Knead 8-10 times on lightly floured surface. Roll dough 1/2″ thick. Cut with 3′ floured cutter. Bake on ungreased baking sheet about 10 min. Makes 6.
Use pie plates for whole cake and bake for 20 min.