Saturday, December 31, 2011

Old Fashioned New Orleans Creole Bread Pudding with Meringue

A rich, meringue topped, New Orleans style Creole bread pudding soufflé, drizzled with whiskey sauce and perfect for any special occasion, holiday or event. 
  A rich, meringue topped, New Orleans style Creole bread pudding soufflé, drizzled with whiskey sauce and perfect for any special occasion, holiday or event.

Old Fashioned New Orleans Creole Bread Pudding

When most of us think of bread pudding, we think of a simple country dessert, born out of leftover bread that is tossed together with a belly warming custard. It really is like a hug y'all!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Authentic Original Original 1952 Chex Party Mix

The authentic, original, original Chex Party Mix was very simple - containing only Wheat and Rice Chex cereals, butter, Worcestershire sauce, salt and garlic salt. As pictured, I've made a few changes, including substituting Corn Chex for the wheat and adding thin pretzel sticks.

Classic Oven Baked Chex Party Mix

We were talking on Facebook the other day about the many varieties of Chex Mix there are these days - seems a lot of us make multiple batches of it over the holidays because it's a nice snack to have around to keep the hungrys down and everybody out from under your feet in the kitchen. I confess to being pretty old school with my version, and it isn't that I don't love the add-ins that everybody has put in over the years, I do! It's just that for some reason I find a version pretty close to what I call the "Authentic Original Original 1952 Chex Party Mix" to be the version that is still my own personal favorite.

I know it sounds funny to say authentic original original but there is a reason for that, you see, because there are actually many different versions of Chex Party Mix out there that lay claim to being the original. Best I can tell, this one that appeared in an ad in Life magazine in June 1952, just two years after the launch of Rice Chex cereal, appears to be the true, authentic, original, original Chex Party Mix recipe.


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Old Fashioned Martha Washington Candy

Another old fashioned heritage confection, Martha Washington Candy is a rich mixture of buttery coconut and condensed milk with pecans, rolled into a tight ball and dipped in chocolate.
Another old fashioned heritage confection, Martha Washington Candy is a rich mixture of buttery coconut and condensed milk with pecans, rolled into a tight ball and dipped in chocolate.

Martha Washington Candy

These little scrumptious bite-sized confections have been a beloved Christmas favorite in families for years, often passed down for generations. People remember their mothers making them, and their grandmothers before them. I don't know how they officially got their name, except perhaps for their namesake, who I've read was quite a good cook. Maybe they came from her own recipe collection - that's one cookbook I don't happen to own!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Cajun Glazed Ham

A baked ham, glazed with a mixture of apple cider, mustard, brown sugar, cane syrup, Cajun seasonings and additional holiday spices, if you like.

Cajun Glazed Ham

This is really pretty much a play on the cane syrup glaze variation found on my Coca Cola Ham, except that I decided to play around with it a bit. Instead of using Coke, I decided to go with apple cider, like I did with my turkey this Thanksgiving. I also switched out the yellow mustard for Creole mustard, reduced the brown sugar slightly so I could use more cane syrup and bumped up the "holiday" spices a little bit, adding some cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger to the recipe, though the traditional holiday spices are completely optional of course. It was Cajun-Approved and delicious!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Forgotten Cookies

Forgotten Cookies are another heritage recipe that has been around for years. Made with egg whites and sugar whipped up into a meringue, and typically chocolate chips and minced pecans folded in, they are always a holiday favorite.

Forgotten Cookies

Traditionally, Forgotten Cookies were the last cookie to go into the oven on cookie night, the oven was then turned off, and the cookies left to dry overnight, which is where they got the name "forgotten." Best served fresh of course, so don't make them too far in advance, but meringue cookies will keep well for a few days, giving you at least a little bit of leeway for advance prep.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Crockpot Candy Peanut Clusters

Crockpot Chocolate Peanut Clusters are a favorite holiday candy made from a mixture of almond bark, baking chocolate, semi-sweet chocolate chips and peanuts.
Crockpot Chocolate Peanut Clusters are a favorite holiday candy made from a mixture of almond bark, baking chocolate, semi-sweet chocolate chips and peanuts.

Crockpot Candy

Crockpot Candy Clusters are a popular confection at Christmastime everywhere, and usually includes pretty much the same combination of ingredients - some kind of mixture of chocolate, along with almond bark and peanuts.  I wanted to use a combination of honey roasted peanuts along with regular dry roasted peanuts this time, so I decided to pair up the almond bark coating, with a bittersweet baking chocolate, instead of the German chocolate that is often typically used. I happened to have some Scharffen Berger bittersweet dark chocolate in the freezer which worked marvelously, though good ole Baker's bittersweet will also work just fine.

Old Fashioned Cold English Pea Salad

A heritage recipe, English Pea Salad is made up of frozen or canned peas, mixed, at minimum, with celery and onion, and dressed with a mayonnaise or sour cream based dressing. I've added some bacon, dill and chopped boiled eggs in mine here, but it's wide open for personalization.
A heritage recipe, English Pea Salad is made up of frozen or canned peas, mixed, at minimum, with celery and onion, and dressed with a mayonnaise or sour cream based dressing. I've added some bacon, dill and chopped boiled eggs in mine here, but it's wide open for personalization.

Old Fashioned Cold English Pea Salad

Cold Pea Salad is another holiday dish you may remember from your grandma's kitchen during the major holidays. Called English Pea Salad, it's more widely known these days as simply Cold Pea Salad, and is a long held holiday favorite, though it's really a great side dish for anytime of the year.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Shipwreck Casserole

Shipwreck casserole is a super easy to put together, layered casserole, made with ground beef, onions,  potatoes, and veggies - here I used carrots, bell pepper and celery - and added a layer of rice.
Shipwreck casserole is a super easy to put together, layered casserole, made with ground beef, onions,  potatoes, and veggies - here I used carrots, bell pepper and celery - and added a layer of rice.

Shipwreck Casserole

There is not a single thing particularly unique to me about this Shipwreck Casserole. It's just one of those meat and potatoes, family-pleasing casseroles with a funny name that's been around a long time. It's actually known by a couple of other names too, like Dinner in a Dish or Meal in One Supper, but there are at least two stories of lore that are attached to how the name shipwreck came about.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Old Fashioned Cornflake Candy

Cornflake Candy is another heritage recipe you may remember from your grandmother. They are a simple blend of sugar, corn syrup, peanut butter and cornflake cereal that are a Christmas classic.

Old Fashioned Cornflake Candy

Another one of those old fashioned treasures that's been around forever, cornflake candy is super easy, and is a treat that is certainly fondly remembered around the holidays. There are a few variations of it around these days, but this is the classic version, with the addition of some vanilla. Feel free to embellish to your heart's desire though, if you like. Coconut, peanuts, chocolate chips and raisins are a few of the typical, modern add-ins.

Like those old fashioned Ting-a-Lings, these are a well loved and easy treat to add to your holiday cookie and candy trays. The one thing that you need to remember is that this sets up quickly, so have everything ready and work quickly.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Ham and Cabbage Soup

A simple soup made from a chicken broth base, with leftover baked ham, bacon, a ham hock and cabbage.
A simple soup made from a chicken broth base, with leftover baked ham, bacon, a ham hock and cabbage.

Ham and Cabbage Soup

Soon as southern fall and winter weather fluctuates from flip-flops back to jackets, I instantly want a good warming soup and I love experimenting with different combinations. This one came about from having some leftover holiday ham and cabbage that I needed to use up, and knowing I had a frozen ham hock I could use to flavor the soup base. I don't bake a whole ham very often, though I really don't know why, but ham hocks make such a great flavoring stand-in for a ham bone for soups and beans, that they really should be a freezer staple. They certainly are for me!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Southern Fried Cabbage

Southern fried cabbage is a very simple cabbage dish prepared often as here, with a bit of butter, bacon & onion. I like to add cider vinegar and dried pepper flakes for a little extra flavor punch.
Southern fried cabbage is a very simple cabbage dish prepared often as here, with a bit of butter, bacon & onion. I like to add cider vinegar and dried pepper flakes for a little extra flavor punch.

Southern Fried Cabbage

We southerners know this dish as "fried" cabbage, even though it's actually more of a mixture of sautéing, and braising or stewing, being cooked low and simmered in its own juices, rather than being flash fried. 

I imagine a lot of folks raised outside of The South associate the words "southern" and "fried" to always mean something that is deep fried in a huge vat of boiling oil, like our fabulous fried chicken, for instance. Surely these people must think we crazy southerners deep fry some odd things - like cabbage and fried corn and fried apples, to name a few.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Simple Act of Popping Corn

Homemade buttered popcorn, made the old fashioned way, in a pot on the stovetop, can truly bring folks together. Make some and see where it takes you! Homemade buttered popcorn, made the old fashioned way, in a pot on the stovetop, can truly bring folks together. Make some and see where it takes you!

Old Fashioned Homemade Popcorn

Don't think I've gone off the deep end for publishing a "recipe" for popcorn. Today's post is more about a story than a recipe. It's a story about the simple act of popping corn.

I don't mean sticking a bag of popcorn in the microwave either. Not that there is a thing wrong with that of course! Heaven knows I've popped my share in that metal box, though today we most often eat it popped in a hot air popper {affil link}.

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