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Category Archives: Cooking

Since my 86 years have started to catch up with me, I don’t cook as often, particularly experimenting with new recipes that I can share. I do still cook the family holiday meals, though, and every Sunday fix lunch for my two daughters which features a favorite recipe and is followed by 3 hours of various kinds of needlework and chatting. For these lunches, I always make something they especially like from my blogs of over 10 years and I thought it might be fun to share my Sunday desserts each week

 

We spent four days last week with my son and his family visiting from St. Louis, all centered on good food and eating, so I planned an easier, milder meal for this Sunday.  This week’s dessert is an easy chilled mousse-type dish that I devised, using what I had on hand.  I think the grated lemon adds something special.  From my 2012 post:

https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2012/06/19/lemon-pecan-dream-cups/

Lemon Pecan Dream Cups


Crust:

¼ cup all -purpose flour
2 Tblsp. butter, cut in small cubes
1/4 cup toasted pecans, chopped

Filling:

2 oz. cream cheese, softened
¼ cup granulated sugar
½ cup frozen topping, thawed
3.4 oz pkg lemon instant pudding (4 servings)
¾ cup milk

1/2 tsp grated lemon peel
1-½ tsp. lemon juice to enhance flavor 

Topping:

½ cup frozen topping, thawed (divided)
4 pecan halves

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Have four oven-safe custard cups at hand

To prepare the crust:

Place the flour and butter cubes in a small bowl.

Work the butter into the flour with your fingertips. Stir in chopped pecans.

Divide this mixture between the four custard cups and press mixture down in the bottoms of the cups. Bake @ 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Place cups on a wire rack to cool.

To make the filling:

Place cream cheese and sugar in a medium bowl.  

Stir until smooth. Stir in ½ cup frozen topping until blended. Spread this mixture on top of cooled crust in custard cups.

In the same medium bowl, place instant pudding mix and milk.  Beat until pudding starts to thicken – about one minute. Stir in lemon peel and juice. Spoon the pudding mixture on top of the cream cheese mixture in the cups.

Swirl 2 Tblsp. of topping on each cup and place one pecan half in the center.

Cover and refrigerate for at least ½ hour. 

Also served:  An easy-to-prepare Beef Stroganoff with noodles.  From my 2009 post:

https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2009/10/31/beef-stroganoff-and-rice-pudding/


Since my 86 years have started to catch up with me, I don’t cook as often, particularly experimenting with new recipes that I can share. I do still cook the family holiday meals, though, and every Sunday fix lunch for my two daughters which features a favorite recipe and is followed by 3 hours of various kinds of needlework and chatting. For these lunches, I always make something they especially like from my blogs of over 10 years and I thought it might be fun to share my Sunday desserts each week.

Today’s dessert is special because it commemorates my 86th birthday – a White Velvet Cake with Caramel Frosting made by my younger daughter. She made her first county fair prize-winning cake as a teenager and made this Best-of-Show cake as a young mother. It’s the cake I always request for my birthday. From my 2008 post, two wonderful cake recipes:

https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2008/07/22/county-fair-white-cake/

My youngest daughter’s adventures with baking award-winning cakes for our county fair started in 1983 when she was a 13-year-old 8th grader and never that interested in fairs – to attend or to exhibit. But her older sister and her mother were immersed in getting things ready for the Hamilton County (Cincinnati) Fair and she decided to enter the cake division.

Cakes were not allowed to be frosted, so all of the attention was centered on the attributes of the cake itself. She made the cake, I took it to the fair and she won a Blue Ribbon and even got her recipe printed in our community newspaper. Here is the recipe:

Blue Ribbon White Cake

2-3/4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1-2/3 cups granulated sugar
4-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 cup milk
2/3 cup Crisco shortening
1/3 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla
5 egg whites
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In large mixer bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add one cup milk and Crisco. Beat with electric mixer for 2 minutes at medium speed. Add 1/3 cup milk and vanilla and beat until smooth.

Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold into batter. Pour batter into two greased and floured 9?x1-1/2? round cake pans. Bake approximately 25 minutes until cake tests done when a toothpick is inserted near the center.

Cool in pans for 15 minutes, remove from pans and cool on wire rack. Frost as desired.

The years passed by, she married, had two children, and out of nowhere in 2006, 23 years after her first blue ribbon, she decided to enter again. But this time she was adamant that she was going to get a Best of Show Rosette. Her sister and I, seasoned fair exhibitors, tried to tell her it was very difficult to get the rosette which would represent the best cake out of all kinds of cakes – white, chocolate, spice, layer, sponge, angel food, pound, etc. She said the Rosette was all she really wanted and she would retire from fair competition after winning it. In spite of a broken oven, coping with two young children and taking the cake to the fairgrounds on a day so hot that we were afraid the cake itself would dissolve – she did it. She won the blue ribbon and the Rosette for Best of Show.

The cake was a favorite she had been baking for quite a few years as my birthday cake – White Velvet Cake from the Cake Bible cookbook.

4-1/2 large egg whites (4 full liquid ounces)
1 cup milk, divided
2-1/4 tsp. vanilla
3 cups sifted cake flour
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 Tblsp. plus 1 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. salt
12 Tblsp. butter, softened

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a medium bowl lightly combine the egg whites, 1/4 cup milk and vanilla.

In the large bowl of an electric mixer combine the cake flour, sugar, baking powder and salt and mix on low speed for 30 seconds to blend. Add the butter and remaining 3/4 cup milk. Mix on low speed until dry ingredients are moistened. Increase to medium speed and beat for 1-1/2 minutes. Scrape down sides. Gradually add the egg mixture in 3 batches, beating for 20 seconds after each addition.

Pour batter into prepared pans and smooth surface with a spatula. Pans will be about 1/2 full. Bake 25-35 minutes or until a tester inserted near the center comes out clean. Cakes should start to shrink from the sides of the pans only after removal from the oven.

Let cakes cool in pans on racks for 10 minutes. Loosen sides with a small metal spatula and invert onto wire racks. To prevent splitting, reinvert so the tops are up and cool completely.

Frost as desired.

Note: Two 9×1-1/2-inch cake pans should be greased, bottoms lined with parchment or wax paper and then greased again and floured.

Can be frozen for two months. Texture is most perfectly moist the same day as baking.

The fair exhibit rules called for a single layer with no frosting, but I’m including the recipe for the luscious caramel frosting that she always uses for my two-layer birthday treat.

QUICK CARAMEL FROSTING (Fannie Farmer Cookbook)

6 Tblsp. butter
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup milk
3 cups confectioners’ sugar

Melt butter and brown sugar in a heavy-bottomed pan, stirring over moderate heat until sugar is dissolved. Add the milk and blend. Cool in the pan. Then beat in the confectioners’ sugar until the frosting is thick enough to spread.


 

Since my 85 years have started to catch up with me, I don’t cook as often, particularly experimenting with new recipes that I can share. I do still cook the family holiday meals, though, and every Sunday fix lunch for my two daughters which features a favorite recipe and is followed by 3 hours of various kinds of needlework and chatting. For these lunches, I always make something they especially like from my blogs of over 10 years and I thought it might be fun to share my Sunday desserts each week.

Our dessert this Sunday was a carrot cake that I first tried in 1985. It was supposed to be the recipe of Mary Frann who was the wife on the Bob Newhart show about the country inn in Vermont.  It was one of my favorite TV shows and this cake became a favorite dessert.  From my 2007 post:  https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2007/11/04/marys-carrot-cake/

Mary's Carrot Cake


1-1/2 cups vegetable oil (I use Canola)
2 cups granulated sugar
3 eggs
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups grated carrots
1 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup drained, crushed pineapple

Grease and flour one 13×9 pan. I like to use two small antique tube pans (8 inches dia. x 2-3/4 inches high) and divide the batter between them.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large mixer bowl, combine oil, sugar and eggs – beat well.

In a medium bowl, sift together the cinnamon, soda, salt and flour. Add to large mixer bowl and beat well. Add vanilla, carrots, nuts and pineapple, beating slowly with mixer or by hand to blend.

Pour into prepared pans and bake @ 350 – approximately 50 minutes for the 13×9 pan and 30-40 minutes for the smaller pans.

Let cool on rack and frost with cream cheese frosting:

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
One pound confectioner’s sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

Also served:  An old-fashioned roast beef dinner with mashed potatoes, gravy, carrots, asparagus with Hollandaise Sauce, and homemade yeast rolls.  A reader had asked how a typical Sunday dinner would be prepared and I wrote this post in 2011:  https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2011/02/08/sunday-roast-beef-dinner/

 


Since my 85 years have started to catch up with me, I don’t cook as often, particularly experimenting with new recipes that I can share. I do still cook the family holiday meals, though, and every Sunday fix lunch for my two daughters which features a favorite recipe and is followed by 3 hours of various kinds of needlework and chatting. For these lunches, I always make something they especially like from my blogs of over 10 years and I thought it might be fun to share my Sunday desserts each week.

Our dessert this week is an easy-to-make chilled concoction from 1984 named The Next Best Thing to Robert Redford.  I received this recipe in an exchange back when we did things by snail mail and it has been a favorite ever since.  As I said in my post in 2010, Robert Redford still looks good to me (I’m 4 years older than he is).

https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2010/08/10/the-next-best-thing-to-robert-redford/

The Next Best Thing to Robert Redford

Crust:

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter, cut in small cubes
1/2 cup toasted pecans, chopped

Filling:

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
8 oz. carton of Cool Whip whipped topping, divided
Small package of instant vanilla pudding (four 1/2-cup svgs.)
1-1/2 cups milk, divided
Small package of instant chocolate pudding (four 1/2-cup svgs.)
Block of Hershey chocolate bar or Ghirardelli milk chocolate bar
Pecans for garnishing

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

To Make the Crust:

Mix the flour, butter and pecans well. Press mixture in a 9×9 baking pan. Bake @ 350 degrees F for 15 minutes until lightly brown. Cool

To Make Filling and Assemble:

Layer 1: Beat cream cheese and sugar until fluffy. Fold in 4 ounces (half of an 8-oz. carton) of whipped topping. Spread over cooled crust.

Layer 2: Mix vanilla pudding and 3/4 cup of milk until thickened. Spread over Layer 1.

Layer 3: Mix chocolate pudding and 3/4 cup of milk until thickened. Spread over Layer 2.

Layer 4: Spread remaining 4 oz. of whipped topping over Layer 3.

Grate the block of milk chocolate over the top of the dessert and garnish with whole toasted pecans.

Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.

Also served: A favorite beef entrée that cooks slowly in the oven and is served over rice – Really Good Ginger Beef. I always have steamed /sautéed broccoli and carrots with this meal.  From my post of 2007:

https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2007/09/22/really-good-ginger-beef/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Since my 85 years have started to catch up with me, I don’t cook as often, particularly experimenting with new recipes that I can share. I do still cook the family holiday meals, though, and every Sunday fix lunch for my two daughters which features a favorite recipe and is followed by 3 hours of various kinds of needlework and chatting. For these lunches, I always make something they especially like from my blogs of over 10 years and I thought it might be fun to share my Sunday desserts each week.

Dessert this week was Brown Velvet Cake from a 1988 recipe clipping. I won a ribbon for the cake at the Harvest Home Festival (Cincinnati area) and still agree with my notation from then: “My favorite chocolate cake.” From my 2010 post: https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2010/08/15/brown-velvet-cake/

Brown Velvet Cake

  • Servings: 8-10 slices
  • Print

The Cake:

1 cup of chocolate chips (I used Ghirardelli Milk Chocolate)
1/2 cup boiling water
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup softened butter
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup dark brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs plus 2 egg whites
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup buttermilk (or 1 Tblsp. white vinegar in a standard measuring cup with milk to equal one cup)

To Make the Cake:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease well and lightly flour two 9-inch round cake pans.

Combine the chocolate chips and boiling water. Let stand, stir and cool.

Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl, cream the butter and peanut butter. Gradually add brown sugar and granulated sugar, creaming well. Add 2 unbeaten eggs and 2 unbeaten egg whites, plus vanilla and cooled chocolate mixture, mixing well.

Add dry ingredients to this batter alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Blend well after each addition.

Turn into the two greased and floured 9-inch cake pans. Bake @ 350 degrees F for 35-40 minutes until a tester inserted in the center of a cake comes out clean. Let cakes rest in pans on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then remove from pans and let cool on the rack.

The Filling:

1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
1 Tblsp. cornstarch
1/2 cup undiluted evaporated milk
1/4 cup water
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup chopped peanuts
1 Tblsp. creamy peanut butter
1/2 tsp. vanilla

To Make the Filling:

In a medium pan, combine the brown sugar and cornstarch. Add evaporated milk, water and egg yolks. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until thick and mixture begins to bubble. Remove from heat, stir in all but 2 Tblsp. of the chopped peanuts, the peanut butter and the vanilla. Set aside to cool.

The Frosting:

2 Tblsp. butter
2 Tblsp. creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
1 tsp. vanilla
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
4-5 Tblsp. evaporated milk, undiluted

To Make the Frosting:

Cream together the butter and peanut butter. Add the melted chocolate chips and vanilla. Blend in the confectioners’ sugar alternately with the evaporated milk to spreading consistency.

To Assemble the Cake:

Place one cooled cake layer on a plate and spread the top with the filling. Place the second layer on top of the filling and frost the top and sides of the cake. Sprinkle the reserved 2 tablespoons of chopped peanuts over the top of the frosted cake. 

This makes a tall (3-1/2 inches) impressive cake …. and it’s delicious.

Also served: A 1940s era Tuna Casserole, like the one my Aunt Mabel used to make. I didn’t have any cheese crackers on hand this time and used a topping of buttered breadcrumbs. Old-fashioned goodness.  From my 2010 post:  https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2010/02/13/a-snowy-day-retro-meal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Since my 85 years have started to catch up with me, I don’t cook as often, particularly experimenting with new recipes that I can share. I do still cook the family holiday meals, though, and every Sunday fix lunch for my two daughters which features a favorite recipe and is followed by 3 hours of various kinds of needlework and chatting. For these lunches, I always make something they especially like from my blogs of over 10 years and I thought it might be fun to share my Sunday desserts each week.

Since we’ll be having a big cookout lunch for Labor Day tomorrow (with apple pies), dessert for this Sunday was simpler and lighter. These pineapple cups are from a 1940 Better Homes & Gardens reader and she describes the dish as, “ Double surprise! Comes cake, then custard hiding pineapple!” It’s easy to make and is a great light dessert. Note: The recipe is for 3 servings – it would be easy to double all ingredients and make 6 servings. From my 2010 blog post:  https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2010/08/20/summer-lunch-for-the-ladies/

Pineapple Cups

8 oz can pineapple tidbits, drained (reserve juice)
2 egg yolks
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 Tblsp. all-purpose flour
Dash of salt
1/3 cup juice drained from an 8 oz. can of pineapple tidbits
1-1/2 Tblsp. lemon juice
1 Tblsp. grated lemon peel
1 Tblsp. butter, melted and cooled
1/4 cup plus 2 Tblsp. milk
2 egg whites, beaten stiff

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Have 3 small ungreased individual baking dishes at hand. Boil water to pour into a flat pan with a lip that will hold the 3 dishes.

Drain juice from pineapple can into a cup – should measure approximately 1/3 cup. Set aside

In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, flour and salt. Add the lemon juice, lemon peel, cooled melted butter and milk, whisking until smooth.  Fold in the beaten egg whites.

Place tidbits in the bottom of three individual casseroles. Divide batter among the three dishes and pour over the pineapple. Place the dishes in a pan with a lip containing an inch of hot water.  Bake @ 325 degrees F for 45 minutes.  Cool on wire rack.

Pineapple cups are best served warm or at room temperature.

Also served, as in the original post: Corn-on-the-cob and Pecan Spinach Toss Salad from my post of 2010.  https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2010/08/20/summer-lunch-for-the-ladies/

 

 


Since my 85 years have started to catch up with me, I don’t cook as often, particularly experimenting with new recipes that I can share. I do still cook the family holiday meals, though, and every Sunday fix lunch for my two daughters which features a favorite recipe and is followed by 3 hours of various kinds of needlework and chatting. For these lunches, I always make something they especially like from my blogs of over 10 years and I thought it might be fun to share my Sunday desserts each week.

Our Sunday dessert this week is another version of an easy fruit kuchen, made this time with fresh blackberries and pears.  The cake layer is thin which lets the good fruit really shine and the flavors are wonderful.  From my 2017 post:
https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2017/08/30/blackberry-pear-kuchen-cake/

Blackberry Pear Kuchen

  • Servings: One 8-inch cake - 6 servings
  • Print

3 Tblsp. sour cream
3 Tblsp. milk
3 Tblsp. vegetable oil
1/4 cup granulated sugar
¼ tsp salt
1 cup + 2 Tblsp. all-purpose flour
¾ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. baking soda
1 cup blackberries
1 cup pear slices

Cinnamon-Ginger Topping: 2 Tblsp. granulated sugar
and 1/4 tsp. each of cinnamon and ginger, mixed together

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8-inch baking pan

In medium bowl, whisk together the sour cream, milk, oil and sugar.

Mix together the salt, flour, baking powder and baking soda, and gradually stir into sour cream mixture. Place batter in greased pan. The dough will be stiff and somewhat sticky. Dampen your fingers with water and then press the dough into the pan.

Arrange the blackberries and pear slices over the top of the cake.

Bake @ 350 degrees F for 20 minutes. Sprinkle Cinnamon-Ginger Topping over top of cake and continue baking for 5 more minutes.

Place on wire rack to cool for 5 minutes before cutting into 6 servings. 

Also served: A great crunchy chicken salad which features veggies (snow peas, green onions, red/yellow peppers, coleslaw mix and romaine) plus an interesting dressing.  From my 2012 post:  https://lillianscupboard.wordpress.com/2012/07/24/crunchy-oriental-chicken-salad/