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November 2007 Issue
In Loving Memory
by Victoria Smith
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Penne with Fennel, Tomato and Cheese

  • 8 oz. penne or other dried pasta shapes
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 fennel bulb
  • Pinch of sugar
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 1/4 cups strained tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 4 oz. cheese -- your choice
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Cut the fennel bulb in half. Cut away the hard core and root. Slice the fennel thinly, then cut the slice into strips.

Bring a large pan of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta, and cook for 10-12 minutes until just tender.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a small saucepan. Add the fennel and shallot, and cook for 2-3 minutes over a high heat, stirring occasionally.

Add the tomatoes, sugar and oregano. Cover the pan, and simmer gently for 10-12 minutes, until the fennel is tender. Add salt and pepper to taste. Drain the pasta, and return it to the pan. Toss with the sauce. Serve with cheese crumbled over the top.

  • Yields: 2 servings
  • Preparation Time: 40 minutes


Orange Cake

  • 2 3/4 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons soda
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 3 eggs (1/2 to 2/3 cups)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped nuts
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange peel
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour baking pan, 13x9x2 inches, or two 9-inch or three 8-inch round layer pans. Measure all ingredients into large mixer bowl. Blend 1/2 minute on low speed, scraping bowl constantly. Beat 3 minutes high speed, Scraping bowl occasionally. Pour into pans.

Bake oblong 45-50 minutes, layer 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool. Frost cake with the Butter Frosting listed below.


Butter Frosting

For oblong cake or two 9-inch layers
  • 1/3 cup soft butter
  • 3 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 3 to 4 tablespoon orange-flavored liqueur or, if desired orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons grated orange peel
For three 8-inch layers
  • 1/2 cup soft butter
  • 4 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 4 to 5 tablespoons orange-flavored liqueur or, if desired orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange peel
Blend butter and sugar. Stir in liqueur and orange peel; beat until smooth.


International Coffee

  • 1/3 cup instant cocoa mix
  • 1/4 cup instant coffee
  • 4 cups boiling water
  • Sweetened whipped cream
Mix cocoa mix and coffee in heatproof container. Pour in boiling water; stir. Top each serving with whipped cream.
  • Yields: 6 servings
  • Preparation Time: 5 minutes

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