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June 2007 Issue
by Ronda L. Halpin and Victoria Smith
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Summer is about lazy days and food that calls to childhood memories and the wide assortment of fresh ingredients available. To that end, we are sharing a special blend of recipes that will have you spending a little extra time with that cup of coffee or taking lunch, snacks or dessert out on the porch.

We begin with a recipe perfect for a leisurely breakfast or brunch. On those days when the afternoon sun has you looking for shade, take advantage of the morning and relax with one of these, a cup of coffee and the newspaper out on the porch.
 

Coffee Walnut Chocolate Chip Muffins

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 3 tablespoons instant coffee
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet chips
  • 1 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
Preheat the oven to 350. Grease and flour a muffin tin. Cream the butter with the sugars, coffee and vanilla. Beat together the eggs and milk. Combine the flour, salt, and baking powder. Alternately add the wet and dry ingredients to the butter mixture. Stir just to combine. Add the chocolate chips and walnuts. Fill the prepared tins full. Bake for 25 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes, then remove the muffins from the tins and cool on a rack.
  • Yields: 1 dozen
  • Preparation Time: 45 minutes
 

This salad brings the taste of summer's freshest ingredients to your table. Hearty enough to be a main course, it's equally at home with your favorite sandwich or a cup of soup made with fresh ingredients.

 

French Summer Salad

  • 3 diced potatoes, skins on
  • Chicken stock (enough to cover potatoes)
  • 8 oz. smoked turkey, shredded
  • 1 10-oz. package petite peas, blanched slightly
  • 1 large carrot, cleaned, grated
  • 1 small red onion, very thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon tarragon
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup garlic mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • 3 tablespoons apple brandy
  • Spinach leaves, freshly washed and dried
Poach the potatoes in the chicken stock until soft.

Combine the potatoes, turkey, peas, onions, salt and pepper.

Mix the tarragon, sour cream, garlic mustard and brandy. Toss with the potato salad and place the mixture on spinach leaves. Serve immediately.

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes
 

This recipe harkens back to the days of playing with siblings in the backyard for hours before Mom called you back to enjoy a sweet treat. These simple bars are really quick to put together and will have you feeling nostalgic and pampered.

 

Mom's Brown Sugar Bars

  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (12-oz) package semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped almonds
Beat the butter and brown sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Add the egg and vanilla beating until well blended.

Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt; gradually add to the butter mixture, beating until well blended.

Press the dough into an ungreased 15-x10-inch jelly- roll pan.

Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes or until golden. Place the pan on a wire rack and sprinkle chocolate morsels evenly over the warm cookie. Let the pan stand for 5 minutes; spread the chocolate evenly over the top. Sprinkle evenly with chopped almonds. Cool completely in the pan on a wire-rack. Cut into squares.

  • Yields: 3 dozen
  • Preparation Time: 30 minutes
 

Nothing says summer like a fresh fruit crisp. This one takes advantage of either apples or peaches. We recommend you try both variations! Having vanilla ice cream on hand will mean you have everything you need for this great dessert on hand all summer long!

 

Fresh Fruit Crisp

  • 1/2 cup quick cooking rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 lbs apples (6 med) or 2 1/2 lbs peaches (10 med)
  • 2 tablespoon granulated sugar
Combine all of the dry ingredients except the granulated sugar in a food processor. Cut the butter in - no need to soften. Blend in the food processor until the butter is in small pieces and is well mixed. Peel, core and slice the fruit to make 5-6 cups. Place the fruit in a 10x6x2-inch baking dish and sprinkle with granulated sugar. Cover the fruit with the crumb mixture. Bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes. Serve warm with ice cream.
  • Yields: 6 servings
  • Preparation Time: 1 hour
 



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