Shopping Day!


Monday – time to visit Krogers and take advantage of their great frozen turkey price: 59 cents a lb (with $10 extra purchase). Not exactly knowing where our Christmas dinner will be, I purchased a 14.5 lb. turkey (usually I would go for 21+, but they didn’t have any out – mostly all were 14 pounders.) Also purchased the baking potatoes for my Knit groups Knit/Crochet MOVIE NIGHT! which is tomorrow. So far 9 people are coming and Krogers had a GREAT deal on HUGE baking potatoes – 2/$1.00 – I bought 14. I’m pretty sure the ladies will not be going for seconds (these are really REALLY BIG potatoes plus we’ll also have some sort of appetizer & dessert so I’m pretty sure that’s enough potatoes. Lots of people in the store early today  – probably just like me: taking advantage of the good sales. Got the mail today and, of course, the next Kroger flyer was there; glad to see they’re carrying out the 59 cents a lb. thing for another week. Two other small grocery stores I shop at both had their lowest price at 79 cents a lb. (and those were NOT name brand turkeys). I’m happy with what I bought.

Speaking of food – I mentioned that I’m getting lots of holiday recipes coming in – hard to chose which to post; they ALL sound yummy!


Green Bean/Wild Mushroom Casserole
with Shallot Topping

1 1/2 lb. fresh or frozen green beans
1/2 oz. dried wild mushrooms
1/2 C. boiling water
3 T. unsalted butter
1/2 lb. white mushrooms, diced
1/4 C. flour
1/2 C. chicken broth
3/4 C. milk
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
10 large shallots
vegetable oil

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick spray. If using fresh green
beans, trim stems off. If using
frozen, thaw & drain off any excess
water. Place dried mushrooms in a
small bowl & pour boiling water over;
let steep to rehydrate.
In large skillet melt butter over medium-
high heat. When it foams, add white
mushrooms, spreading into an even
layer. Do not stir or move the mush-
rooms for 3-4 minutes; let them brown.
then toss mushrooms & cook thoroughly
on other side. Drain wild mushrooms,
reserving the steeping liquid in a bowl.
Add wild mushrooms to skillet with other
mushrooms & cook, stirring, 2-3 minutes.
Add flour to mushrooms & stir to coat.
Add mushroom steeping liquid & chicken
broth; whisk liquid to break up any clumps.
Stir in milk & cook, stirring & whisking
alternately, until liquid is slightly thickened.
Remove from heat & stir in salt/pepper &
green beans. Spread into prepared dish.*
Peel & finely slice shallots; thoroughly wipe
out or wash the skillet & heat with about
1/2 inch of oil over high heat. When oil is
quite hot but not yet smoking, add shallots
in a thin, even layer. Turn heat to medium-
low & cook 10 minutes until light golden
brown. Stir occasionally if necessary to keep
shallots from burning or sticking together.
Remove shallots from oil using a slotted
spoon & stir half of them into green bean
mixture. Cover with foil & bake 50-60
minutes. Spread remaining fried shallots
on top of casserole & bake, uncovered,
5 minutes until topping is crisp. Let stand
5 minutes then serve. Serves 6

* At this point the casserole can be covered
& refrigerated for up to 24 hours.


Deep-Fried Stuffing

1/2 C. flour
1 tsp. poultry seasoning
salt/ground black pepper, to
2 eggs
2 T. milk
1 C. seasoned bread crumbs
1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp. ground black pepper
2 1/2 C. prepared stuffing
1 quart oil, for frying (or as

Combine flour, poultry seasoning,
salt/pepper in a shallow bowl. Beat
eggs & milk together in second
shallow bowl until smooth. Mix
bread crumbs, Parm. cheese &
1 tsp. black pepper together in a
third shallow bowl. Scoop prepared
stuffing (about 2 T. per serving) into
the palm of your hand & roll into a
ball, forming about 12 balls. Dredge
each ball through the flour mixture,
shaking off any excess. Transfer each
ball to egg mixture, evenly coat then
roll each ball in bread crumb mixture
until evenly coated. Set each stuffing
ball on a plate & allow to set to allow
the coating to stick to the stuffing. Heat
oil in a deep-fryer or large saucepan
to 350 degrees F.
Carefully lower 4-5 stuffing balls into
hot oil & fry until golden brown on
all sides, about 4 minutes. Transfer to
a paper towel-lined plate using a
slotted spoon. Repeat with remaining

Potato Pillows

2 lb. russet potatoes, peeled
1 T. flour
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 tsp. dried dill
kosher salt/ ground black pepper,
to taste
1 C. vegetable oil
2 T. chopped fresh parsley- garnish,

Place potatoes in large saucepan &
cover with cold water 1 inch past
potatoes. Bring to boil & cook until
parboiled, 6-7 minutes; drain & let
cool. Using a box grater, finely shred
potatoes. Use a clean dish towel or
cheese cloth; drain potatoes completely
removing as much water as possible.
Transfer potatoes to large bowl; stir in
flour, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano
& dill; season with salt/pepper, to taste.
The mixture should be workable but
dry; form potatoes into tater tots.
Heat oil in large stockpot or Dutch oven
over medium heat. Add tots to pan,
5-6 at a time, cook until evenly brown &
crispy, 3-4 minutes then transfer to
paper towel-lined plate. Serve
immediately, garnished with parsley,
if desired. Serves 6

Crockpot Apple Pie

8 apples, peeled, cored & sliced
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
3/4 C. milk
2 T. butter, softened
3/4 C. sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 C. Bisquick baking mix
1/3 C. brown sugar, packed
3 T. chilled butter

Place apple slices & spices in a
big bowl & toss. Spray insides of
crockpot with nonstick spray; place
apples in crockpot. Mix milk, butter,
sugar, eggs, vanilla & 1/2 C. Bisquick
very well. Place spoonfuls of the
batter mix over the apples. In a
small bowl cut up butter into
remaining Bisquick mix until
crumbly; lightly sprinkle this over
the batter in crockpot. Cover & cook
on Low 6-7 hours. Serves 10-12


Greek Spread
(overnight recipe)

1 C. + 1 T. chopped almonds, divided
1 (8 oz) pkg. crumbled feta cheese
1 (7 oz) jar roasted red peppers,
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 (8 oz, ea) pkgs. cream cheese,
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen chopped
spinach, thawed/drained

crackers or toasted pita wedges

Line a 2 qt. bowl with plastic wrap
then sprinkle in 1 T. chopped almonds.
In separate bowl mix 1/2 C. almonds,
feta, peppers, garlic, cream cheese &
spinach; blend well. Press mixture into
bowl over almonds. Cover & chill over-
night. Remove plastic wrap & invert onto
a serving dish. Press remaining almonds
onto outside. Serve with crackers or pita
wedges. Makes about 7 cups.

(recipe: Rhond G-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Balsamic-Maple Acorn Squash

1 large acorn squash (1 1/2 lb)
1/4 C. balsamic vinaigrette salad
dressing (Kraft)
3 T. maple syrup
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Cut squash lengthwise in half;
remove/discard seeds. Place halves,
cut sides down, on cutting board. Cut
each half crosswise into 6 slices &
place in large bowl. Mix remaining
ingredients until blended & add to
squash – toss to coat evenly. Spread
slices on foil-covered rimmed baking
sheet. Bake 45 minutes until squash
is tender, turning after 25 minutes.
Serves 6

(recipe: Kraft recipes)

Cranberry Bake
(cranberry sauce)

1 (16 oz) can whole-berry cranberry
1 (11 oz) can mandarin oranges,
1/2 tsp. lemon juice*
2 tsp. sugar

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 1 qt. casserole dish with
nonstick spray. In medium bowl
combine all ingredients & pour
into prepared dish. Bake 20-25
minutes until cranberries are hot
& bubbly.

*If you would like this a little more
tart: you can double the amount
of lemon juice


Pumpkin Poke Cake
(overnight recipe)

1 box yellow cake mix
1 (14 oz) can pumpkin puree-
not pumpkin pie filling *
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
1/2 bag Heath Bits (candy)
caramel ice cream sauce

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 9″ baking pan with
nonstick spray. Mix together
DRY cake mix, pumpkin puree
& pumpkin pie spice (do not
add other ingredients on cake
mix box). Pour batter into
prepared pan & bake 35-45
minutes until a toothpick inserted
into center comes out clean. Let
cake cool completely.
Use the handle of a wooden spoon
to poke holes all over the top of
the cake. Pour the sweetened
condensed milk over the cake,
gently pushing it into the holes
using the back of a spoon.
Refrigerate cake 1 hour until all
of the milk has soaked into the
cake. Spread thawed Cool Whip
over top of cake & sprinkle with
Heath Bits; drizzle caramel over
top & refrigerate 3-4 hours or

*using a 14 oz can of pumpkin
puree will yield a thicker batter.
You can add up to 1 C. more of
pumpkin puree if you would like
a thinner batter (which will yield
a slightly fluffier cake). IF you do
add more – you will need to adjust
the baking time and add a little
more pumpkin pie spice or

Slight variation on above recipe:
Same ingredients except:

15 oz can pumpkin puree
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 C. sugar
(omit Heath Bits)
graham cracker crumbs
chopped pecans

Prepare cake the same way, let cool –
poke holes/pour sweet’d cond. milk
on top & refrigerate 1 hour.
NEXT: Combine Cool Whip with cream
cheese & stir until combined; mix in
sugar until thoroughly combined &
spread over top of cake. Refrigerate
To Serve: drizzle top with caramel
sauce, garnish with graham cracker
crumbs & chopped pecans.


Crockpot Sweet Potato/Butternut
Squash Soup

1 lb. sweet potatoes, peeled/cut into
1″ cubes (about 3 C.)
1 lb. butternut squash, peeled/diced into
1″ cubes (about 3 1/2 C.)
1/2 C. chopped onion
1 (14 oz) can chicken broth, divided
1/2 C. (1 stick) butter, cubed
1 (13.5 oz) can coconut milk *
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. ground red pepper, to taste
1 1/2 tsp. salt, to taste
3-4 green onions, green & white parte,
finely chopped

Combine sweet potatoes, squash, onion,
half of chicken broth & butter in crockpot.
Cover & cook on High 4 hours until
vegetables are tender. Puree soup in batches
in a blender, 1 C. at a time, returning batches
to crockpot. Stir in remaining broth, coconut
milk, ground cumin, ground red pepper & salt.
Cook on High 15 minutes until heated through.
Ladle into bowls & sprinkle with chopped
green onion.


While I was out today I noticed that gas
prices have dropped even more: $2.13/9
now! GREAT! (I’m only down 1/4 tank,
so I might just wait a bit & see what
happens – hope I don’t regret that

Our weather is a balmy 64 degrees,
sunny with clear skies & a slight breeze-
very nice FALL weather! I’m all for this
going on for a very LONG time, but
having grown up here in good old
Michigan and lived here my entire
67 years, I know that’s not realistic.
I remember 2-4 inches of the nasty,
cold white stuff on Thanksgiving so
I’m just holding my breath that we
don’t get any of that any time soon.
Hey – a girl can WISH, can’t they?

Have a great day!




The URI to TrackBack this entry is:

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: