December Savor the Flavor Recipes

Savor the Flavors is excited to be bringing you into the New Year with some exciting new recipes and helpful suggestions to make your meal planning easier.  We are still looking for people who love to cook and share their ideas to write to me and become a guest contributor to the column.  Let us kick the New Year off  filled with lots of ideas and cooking fun.

Vanilla Magic Custard Cake
Prep time:  15 mins
Cook time:  45 mins
Total time:  1 hour
Serves: 9-12

½ cup unsalted butter-melted and slightly cooled
2 cups milk-lukewarm
4 eggs-separated
1¼ cups (150g) powdered sugar
1 Tablespoon water
1 cup (115g) flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
powdered sugar for dusting

Preheat the oven to 325°F
Lightly grease 8x8 inch baking dish, set aside
Whip the egg whites until stiff peaks form, set aside.
Beat the egg yolks and powdered sugar until pale yellow.
Mix in melted butter and the tablespoon of water (for about 2 minutes) until evenly combined.

Mix in the flour until evenly incorporated.
Slowly beat in the milk and vanilla extract until well combined.
Fold in the egg whites (1/3 at a time, then repeat until all of the egg whites are folded in).
Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 40-60 minutes (until the cake is barely jiggly in the center). Baking time might vary depending on your oven or pan you use, but start checking after 40 minutes. If the top browns too quick before the minimum of 40 minutes, you can cover the cake with aluminum foil.
Cool the cake completely before dusting with powdered sugar. Even cooled, it will be slightly jiggly because it has custard layer in the center.  ~~ENJOY~~


Rainbow Punch
1- 2 litre of Hawaiian Punch
1 - 64 oz orange juice (chilled)
1- 2 litre of Gingerale
Add all ingredients well. Mix in 1 - small tub of orange sherbet or rainbow sherbet ice cream, drop by tablespoons into mixture… Serve chilled..
Very easy for any of your young people to make and serve.  ~~ENJOY~~

Dried Apple Slices (Kids Can Cook)
2 apples (Gala or Fiji is best)
½ tsp ground cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 225°F.
 Slice apples as thinly as possible, about 1/8-inch or thinner (use a mandolin if you have one). Arrange slices in a single layer on 2 baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Sprinkle with cinnamon if using. Bake 1 1/2 hours; flip slices and continue baking 1 1/2 hours longer or until completely dry and crisp (they will not crisp more upon cooling). Timing will vary depending on the moisture content of the apples and the thickness of the slices. Let cool. Store in an airtight container up to 1 week. These are great for an after school snack. Put a few in a baggie and take on the road or in your favorite bag for a quick pick me up. ~~ENJOY~~

VEGETARIAN CHILI (For those cold winter night suppers)
2 pounds lean ground turkey
1 package McCormick Chili Seasoning (For Slow Cookers)
2 cans (14 1/2 ounces each) diced tomatoes, undrained
2 cans (16 ounces each) kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 can (15 1/2 ounces) tomato sauce

Brown turkey in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Drain fat (if any).
Place cooked turkey, seasoning mix, tomatoes, beans and tomato sauce in slow    cooker.Stir until well mixed. Cover.
Cook 8 hours on LOW or 4 hours on HIGH. Stir before serving. Makes 8 servings. ~~ENJOY~~

2 quarts apple cider
1/4 cup sugar
10 whole cloves
6 whole cloves of allspice
4 sticks cinnamon
Combine ingredients in a large saucepan. Heat slowly to a boil; boil for 5 minutes. Discard spices or strain to remove. Serve hot with orange slices or whole cinnamon sticks, if desired.
Makes 8 1-cup servings. (Great for those cold nights by the fireplace or wood stove) ~~ENJOY~~

15 ounce cans black beans, undrained
1 16 ounce can vegetarian broth
1/2 cup salsa
1 tbsp chili powder
shredded cheese (optional)
sour cream (optional)
chopped onion (optional)
fresh chopped cilantro (optional)

Mash one can of black beans with potato masher or, pulse the beans in a food processor with a little bit of extra water if needed, until they are mostly smooth.
Pour both cans of beans into medium saucepan. Add vegetable broth, salsa, and chili powder. Bring to a boil. If desired top with shredded cheese, sour cream, onion, and cilantro.
Makes four low-fat servings of vegetarian black bean soup.. ~ENJOY~~

TURKEY HASH WITH COUNTRY GRAVY - Use leftover turkey from Christmas.
1/2 pound hot Italian sausage, casings removed
1/2 cup frozen chopped onions
1/2 cup frozen chopped green pepper (recommended: Pict Sweet)
2 tablespoons chopped pimientos
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 cups leftover stuffing
2 eggs
2 cups diced turkey meat

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Crumble sausage into skillet. Add onions, peppers, and pimientos. Cook 6 to 8 minutes or until sausage is just cooked through, stirring often to break up sausage. Transfer to a large bowl. Clean pan and heat oil.
Add stuffing, eggs and turkey to bowl with sausage mixture and stir to combine. Add to heated pan and press down with spatula until bottom of skillet is covered with hash. Brown 5 to 7 minutes untouched. Use a spatula to flip over hash and continue to cook another 5 to 7 minutes.
Meanwhile, take leftover gravy and heat in a saucepan over medium heat. As gravy heats up, whisk in enough milk to thin to desired consistency.Serve hash topped with poached egg and warmed turkey country gravy ~~ENJOY~~

8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup strong brewed coffee
Assorted fresh fruit (whatever you like, grapes, kiwi, orange sections, pineapple, apples, melon, strawberries)
In a heavy saucepan, melt chocolate with milk over low heat, stirring constantly.
 Stir coffee into chocolate mixture; keep warm.
Serve with fruit. Yield: 2-1/2 cups. ~~ENJOY~~

3lbs tart green apples, peeled,cored, and sliced thin
1⁄2 cup sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
1⁄2 cup apricot jam
2 lemons zested or grated
freshly grated nutmeg
apple pie spice
1 cup chopped and toasted walnuts
1⁄2 cup unsalted melted butter
1⁄4 cup apple juice
1 package egg roll wrap
caramel sauce

Place apples, apple juice, sugar, jam, zest, nutmeg, and apple pie spice in a large heavy skillet. Cook over med-high heat, covered, until apples are tender, about 10-15 minutes. Stir in walnuts and taste and adjust seasonings.
Place several tablespoon of filling at an angle in the center of an eggroll wrapper.
Roll up like an envelope. Lightly moistening edges with water to seal. Place seam-side down on buttered baking sheet.
Repeat until all filling is used. Brush tops with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar.
Place under hot broiler until golden about 3-5 minutes
To serve: Place caramel sauce into individual dessert plates  and place egg rolls on top. ~~ENJOY~~

As the New Year approaches, many cultures around the world prepare and serve special food on New Year's Day. Some believe that eating certain foods on the first day of the New Year will bring good fortune. “Many people will ‘eat for luck’ . . . and plan to eat special foods that, by tradition, are supposed to bring them good luck.” One such New Year's Day food tradition is black-eyed peas, considered in many cultures to symbolize prosperity, being said to represent copper coins.

Along with black-eyed peas, some cultures, particularly many African Americans serve greens, such as collards, turnips, or kale. Cabbage is another green vegetable served on New Year’s Day. Such green vegetables represent prosperity in the form of paper money
Similarly, some cultures will make sure that rice, another so-called good luck food, is eaten on New Year's Day. Hoppin John, southern dish that combines black-eyed peas and rice, might be a considered a “double dose of luck.”
Several nationalities include pork on the New Year’s Day menu. The Pennsylvania Dutch tradition of eating pork and sauerkraut on the first day of the New Year is said also to bring good luck and protection. This practice may be traced back to Europe when wild boars were hunted and killed on the first day of the year. When Austrians, Swedes, Germans and other European settlers arrived in the United States, they may have brought this custom with them.
Another New Year’s food tradition comes from Spain, where it is customary to eat 12 grapes at the stroke of midnight. Each grape signifies one month of the upcoming year. A sweet grape means the month will be good. A sour grape means the month will be bad.
Other cultures include some form of fish as a lucky dish. People in the Northwestern part of the U.S. may choose to eat salmon on New Year’s Day. Some Germans and Poles choose herring, which may be served in a cream sauce or pickled. According to German folklore, eating a herring at the stroke of midnight will bring luck for the next year. Other Germans may choose to eat carp.
Many cultures believe that any food in the shape of a ring will bring good luck, as the closing of the ring means 'coming full circle' and represents a fresh start in the New Year. For example, lentils are symbolic of prosperity, so lentil soup or lentils with rice make up the first meal of the New Year in Brazil.

Please remember that Savor the Flavors is asking for your input on these articles. We want to see your ideas and recipes, so please email us with your ideas.

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