Carol’s Baked Potato Soup

Contributed by: Carol Haworth (LaFerney)

  • 3 med. Baked potatoes (prepare soup while potatoes are cooling)
  • 3T. Butter (or margarine
  • 1c. Diced white onion
  • 2T. Flour
  • 4 c. chicken stock
  • 2 c. water
  • 1/4 c. cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 c. instant mashed potatoes
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1/4 t. pepper
  • 1/2 t. basil
  • 1/8t. Thyme
  • 1-2 cups half and half (start with 1 cup; add according to thickness)

    Melt butter in a large saucepan, and sauté onion until light brown. Add the flour to the onions and stir to make a roux. Add stock, water, cornstarch, mashed potatoes and spices to the pot and bring to a boil.

    Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

    Add chopped baked potato and half and half to the saucepan, bring soup back to boil, then reduce heat and simmer the soup for another 15 min. or until it is thick. (Do not boil any longer or the milk will clabber and make the soup look unappetizing.

    Garnish with shredded cheese, crumbled cooked bacon (or bacon bits), chopped green onions)

  • Carol’s California Quiche

    Contributed by: Carol Haworth

  • 1 10 inch uncooked pie shell
  • 1/4 c. real bacon crumbles or bits (I use Oscar Mayer)
  • 8 oz. Grated Jack cheese
  • 1 can (4 oz.) Ortega diced green chilies
  • 1 1/2 c. fat free half-and-half
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 medium onion quartered.

    Sprinkle bacon, cheese and Chilies onto bottom of pie crust… Put cream, eggs and onion into blender; blend for about 10 seconds (or mince onion and mix with beaten eggs and cream). Pour cream mixture into pie shell. Bake in preheated oven 350, or until top is golden brown and quiche is set. Remove from oven and allow to set for 5 minutes before serving. Serves 6.

  • Carol’s Sausage-Egg Casserole

    Contributed by: Carol Haworth

  • 6 eggs
  • 1 lb. sausage browned and drained
  • 1 c. sharp cheddar cheese shredded
  • 1 tsp. Mustard dry
  • 1 tsp. Nutmeg
  • 6 slices white bread with crusts removed
  • 1 1/2 c. milk

    Add mustard to sausage, place bread in bottom of oblong casserole dish. Beat eggs. Add milk and nutmeg. Sprinkle sausage over bread. Pour egg and milk mixture over bread and sausage. Sprinkle shredded cheese over top. Refrigerate over night. Bake 1 hour at 350 degrees. Serve with fruit and coffeecake.

  • Dave’s Pot Roast

    Contributed by: David LaFerney – Adapted from my mother’s method

    When we were kids. Sunday dinner without roast and potatoes just wasn’t right. If you want to make someone happy let them smell this when they walk in the door at the end of a cold workday.

  • Prep time – 20 minutes
  • Cooking time – 2 to 2 1/2 hours
  • Meat – 2 to 4 lb. beef or pork roast of any cut – economical cuts may actually be best, because the long cooking time will make them tender, and they have more flavor than the more expensive tender cuts
  • 8 medium potatoes – peeled or not – any kind, but we always used Idaho russet because they were most economical – cut into pieces big enough to require 2 or 3 bites in polite company
  • 1 large onion coarsely chopped
  • 1 envelope Lipton onion soup mix
  • 1 regular size can (10 ¾ oz) of Campbell’s vegetable beef soup
  • 1 can of peas or a cup of water
  • Carrots cut into 1 1/2″ pieces – enough to fill the pan

    Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

    To a lightly oiled heavy 4-6 qt roasting pan, add the ingredients in this order:

    Meat, 1/2 of potatoes, handful of carrots, 1/2 Lipton soup mix, remainder of potatoes, onions, more carrots, can of vegetable beef soup, can of peas or water, remainder of Lipton onion soup. Ok, the order isn’t important, but I like it to kind of in layers instead of all mixed up. And I do like the meat on the bottom.

    Cover tightly and place in the middle of the preheated oven. Don’t add any liquid at this time, plenty of juice will cook out initially. Cook for 1 hour at 425 degrees. Lower temperature to 325 degrees, and check to make sure that you have plenty of liquid left. If the vessel isn’t 1/3 to 1/2 full of liquid then add hot tap water to this level. Don’t add more water than is absolutely necessary or you will be stewing instead of roasting. Cook for about 1 more hour at 325 degrees until fork tender.

    For gravy: Decant liquid from the pan, allow to stand for a few minutes until the fat separates to the top and skim off, then do one of two things:

    1) Put the juice in a saucepan over medium heat. Mix 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with COLD water in a coffee cup until the starch has dissolved. Stir cornstarch mixture into juice.

    2) Or put 1 tablespoon of fat into a saucepan over medium high heat, to hot fat add 1/4 cup flour (any kind) stirring furiously. When a paste has formed and it has mostly stopped bubbling add the juice (about 1 -2 cups).

    Stir continuously and bring to a simmer, taste, adjust seasoning if needed then serve immediately. In other words, have everything else on the table before you make gravy.

    Tips:

    You don’t have to use the two kinds of soup mix. Almost any savory dish can be seasoned with nothing more than salt, pepper and garlic. It just takes more skill with a dish like this where the seasoning can’t easily be adjusted.

    1) The size of the roast and the number of potatoes and carrots isn’t at all important, just add your ingredients to the pan as you prep them, and stop when the pan is full.

  • David’s 30 Minute Chili

    Contributed by: David LaFerney

    Source: From a word of mouth recipe that I was taught by my Mother.

    By thawing the meat in the microwave, you can literally have this on the table 30 minutes after you start.

  • 1 pound of ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon of chopped garlic (I usually use the kind that is pre chopped in a jar)
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 bell pepper (any stage of ripeness) chopped
  • 12 oz more or less of canned spaghetti sauce (Prego, or hunts for example)
  • < Or 12 oz tomato sauce Or 6 oz of tomato paste and 6 oz of water
  • 1 package of chili seasoning Or 1 tablespoon chili powder

    Or your herbs and spices, hot sauce, Salsa or what have you

    Or plain old salt and pepper if it is all you have. It will still be great.

  • 1 tablespoon of cooking oil (I prefer olive oil, but you can use any kind including butter or margarine)
  • 30-60 oz of canned beans (I prefer 1/2 or more of this to be pork and beans, and the remainder to be canned pinto beans, but any kind of pre cooked beans will be fine including left over home cooked ones)In a heavy 4-qt. pan over medium to high heat, start browning the onion, peppers, garlic and meat in the oil.   Add the chili seasoning or spices. When the meat is browned, pour the meat mixture into a colander to drain any fat that has cooked out. While the meat is draining, lower the heat to medium and add the tomato sauce to the pan. Stir until the sauce comes to a simmer (this will loosen the brown bits from the meat) and then add the meat mixture back to the pan. Add the beans and return to a simmer (stirring often to prevent sticking) then lower the heat to very low and cover. This is the time to taste the sauce and add more salt, pepper, spices or hot sauce if needed. Simmer for a few minutes and serve with corn bread, crackers, corn chips, and/or grated cheese and iced tea. This makes good leftovers for a few days.

    Tips:

  • 1) When a recipe calls for browning meat, try not to add too much meat at one time. If during the process you see a noticeable amount of water bubbling away in the pot, then you are sweating and not browning. If this happens, there are several things that you can do:
  • A) Turn the heat up
  • B) Push the meat (and veggies) over to the side of the pan, and brown things a little at a time in the center especially until the water evaporates.
  • C) Remove some of the food from the pan and brown a little at a time.Remember, browning means the food should actually have some brown on it (caramelized) not just boiled gray.
  • 2) Leftovers will freeze pretty well, think “chili dogs”.You might notice that this is very similar to “30 minute Spaghetti”. Recipe overlap makes it easier to shop and keep your kitchen stocked with staples. .
  • David’s 30 Minute Spaghetti

    David’s 30 Minute Spaghetti

    Contributed by: David LaFerney

    Source: From a word of mouth recipe that I was taught by my Mother.

    Shirley’s Father (Earl Jean Maxwell) and before him Her Grandfather (John H Wilmoth) always raised cattle and would give a fattened calf to our family and each of Shirley’s siblings at least once a year. Because of this we always had a plentiful supply of beef in our freezer, especially ground beef, and it was a staple in our household.

    This recipe is inexpensive, quick, and delicious so our family had it at least once a week for years (plus leftovers). By thawing the meat in the microwave, you can literally have this on the table 30 minutes after you start.

  • 1 pound of ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon of chopped garlic (I usually use the kind that is pre chopped in a jar)
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 bell pepper (any stage of ripeness) chopped
  • 26 oz more or less have canned spaghetti sauce (Prego, or hunts)
  • Or 26 oz tomato sauce
  • Or 12 oz of tomato paste and 12 oz of water
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon of cooking oil (I prefer olive oil, but you can use any kind including butter or margarine)
  • 4-8 servings of pasta (according to package directions) we usually use spaghetti, but any kind will work

    In a heavy 4 qt. pan over medium high heat start browning the onion, peppers, garlic and meat in the cooking oil. Season lightly with salt and pepper. If you are using packaged spaghetti sauce be careful not to over season. When the meat is browned, pour the meat mixture into a colander to drain any fat that has cooked out. While the meat is draining, lower the heat to medium and add the tomato sauce to the pan. Stir until the sauce comes to a simmer (this will loosen the brown bits from the meat) and then add the meat mixture back to the pan. Return to a simmer (stirring often to prevent sticking) then lower the heat to very low and cover until the noodles are ready. This is the time to taste the sauce and add more salt or pepper if needed. Toss together the sauce and noodles and serve with Parmesan cheese, salad, bread, and iced tea. This makes good leftovers for a few days.

    Tips:

  • 3) Nobody likes over cooked pasta. If the package says, cook for 9-11 minutes start tasting it at 7-8 minutes and drain it immediately as soon as it is no longer crunchy.
  • 4) Season the pasta water with 1 tablespoon of salt and butter or oil.
  • 5) Wait for the water to boil before adding the pasta then bring it back to a boil and lower the heat to medium low. Don’t cover the pan or it will boil over.
  • 6) Don’t add spaghetti noodles to the water in a bundle. Fan them out as you add them or they will stick together in a mass and be disgusting. Stir the water as you add them to prevent this. Once the water comes back to a boil (30 seconds if you are on high), the danger of sticking is over.
  • 7) Try to avoid holding the noodles once they are drained and ready or they will again stick together. Adding oil or butter to the water helps to avoid this, but the best thing is to be ready to mix the sauce and noodles as soon as the noodles are ready.
  • 8) If you drain the noodles in the same colander that you already used to drain the meat, the hot water will go a long way toward getting the colander cleaned up.
  • 9) If you add the noodles to the sauce in the pan that you cooked the sauce in, and serve it out of the same pan, you will only have one pan that is really very dirty. This is a worthy thing after a workday.

    Put leftovers in an uncovered casserole dish; heat in the microwave, top with cheese and brown in a 350-degree oven as a variation.

  • Donna’s Chicken and Rice Soup

    Donna’s Chicken and Rice Soup

    Contributed by: Donna Wheatley

    When Earl and I were very young and living in New Orleans with two babies, I did all I could to conserve funds. I used to buy whole chickens for forty-nine cents a pound on sale, take them home, cut them up, and freeze the “good parts” for meals, and then put all the wings, backs, necks, giblets, and skin from those four chickens into the pot, instead of the whole chicken I now use. Honestly, there was just as much meat from the scrap parts of those four chickens as is in one whole chicken, and I considered it to be “free”.

    A variation of this recipe is to cook the same ingredients in a Crock Pot with NO water all day. When it’s done, you’ll be amazed at how much liquid cooked out of that chicken! Be sure to chill it and scrape off the fat, which will be considerable. You will get the richest, most delicious, fat free broth you can imagine! I often do this, then use the meat for casseroles and use the stock for other things, like Turkey Dressing.

  • In a big pot, place
  • 1 whole chicken (remove giblets)
  • 2 stalks of celery, sliced
  • 3 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 large clove of garlic, minced
  • 1-tablespoon salt
  • 1-teaspoon thyme
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned pepper (or 1/2-teaspoon black pepper)

    Cover with water and bring to a boil. Cook about one hour until the chicken is cooked through and tender. Remove chicken from pot, cool, and remove meat from the bones. Discard skin and bones. Put meat back into the pot. Add a can of stewed tomatoes and 1/2 pound frozen peas and carrots, if you want to.

    Cook rice in a separate pot. (Bring to a boil, 2 cups of water and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Add 1 cup of raw rice. Cover, and cook on low for 20 minutes.)

    To serve, put some rice in the bottom of a bowl and ladle the chicken soup over it.

  • Grandma Jean’s Pepper Steak

    Contributed by: David LaFerney

    Source: Mom AKA Grandma Jean (Esther Jean LaFerney, Crockett)

  • 1-pound round steak – cut into thin strips
  • 1 tablespoon Bacon grease or oil (bacon grease may be one of the tastiest substances known to man, and it has no Trans fats)
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 green pepper – cut into strips
  • 1-tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1-teaspoon sugar
  • 1 beef bouillon cube
  • 1-tablespoon cornstarch mixed with a little bit of COLD waterPrep time – 20 minutes
  • Cook time – 1 hour and 10 minutes
  • 1 1/2-hour totalBrown steak strips, onion, and celery in oil. Add black pepper, sugar water and bouillon cube. Stir, cover, reduce heat and simmer about 1 hour. Add green pepper and simmer 5-10 minutes or longer. Simmering longer at this point will reduce the flavor of the green peppers. Some people like them nearly raw, others will prefer them well cooked. It’s just a matter of personal taste. Blend cornstarch/water and soy sauce, add to steak mixture and stir until sauce thickens
  • Grandma Jean’s Missouri Hash

    Contributed by: David LaFerney

    Source: Mom AKA Grandma Jean (Esther Jean LaFerney, Crockett)

  • 2 Large Onions – chopped
  • 2 Sweet Green Peppers – chopped
  • 1-Pound Hamburger
  • 2 Cups canned tomatoes – mashed
  • 1/2 cup plain rice – uncooked (plain as in not minute rice)
  • 1-teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4-teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Prep time 15 minutes
  • Cook time 45 minutes

    Brown the hamburger and drain any excess grease, add onions, green peppers, tomatoes, rice and seasonings. Pour into covered casserole and bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 45 minutes or until rice is done.

  • Granny Mac’s Chicken Casserole

    Contributed by: Alma Marie Maxwell (Wilmoth) – Shirley LaFerney’s Mother

  • 4 Chicken Breasts (or cooked pork chops)
  • 1 – 5 oz can of evaporated milk
  • 2 cans Cream of Chicken Soup
  • 1 stick margarine
  • 1 egg
  • 1 pkg jiffy mix cornbread mix
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • Cut up chicken into bite sized pieces and boil until tender, mix with soup and milk and put into a casserole dish. Combine Cornbread mix, egg, chicken broth and margarine. Mix well and spread over chicken mixture. Bake 20 minutes at 325 degrees.