Ringin’ in the Appalachian New Year


My older daughter and I went to a really great event on Sunday called Ringin’ in the Appalachian New Year.  It was held in the large cafeteria of Holy Family school in Price Hill (a suburb of Cincinnati).  As you can see by the poster, there was something for everyone with continuous music from 1 PM to 5 PM….

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One portion of the program included hoe-down style square dancing and I was so glad to see my daughter on the floor enjoying herself after two years of medical problems …

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Admission was something for the potluck dinner, although no one was turned away who wanted to eat.  I brought my Swiss Chicken and Orzo Casserole which I baked and then put in a hot pot to keep warm.  There was a wonderful spread of food including chicken, ham, three kinds of bean casseroles, cornbread, salad, bread and lovely desserts – all delicious.  There was a contest for the best “corny” dish and a pie contest.  I haven’t entered a pie contest in over 30 years but brought along my favorite Concord Grape Streusel  pie and won first prize.


The Memory Quilt mentioned in the poster is a collection of memories of Appalachian and country life that attendees have written over the years and collected in binders – a quilt made by writing rather than sewing.

We don’t usually have anything special that we look forward to after New Year’s in January, but from now on, this event will be highlighted on our calendar.

Holiday Fried Wontons


I first had fried wontons at the home of my son and his wife in St. Louis in 1993.  My daughter-in-law liked to try different dishes and this was new to all of us.  They are delicious, crispy and not difficult to make, although a bit time-consuming.  Allow about a half-hour to sit down and assemble the wontons.  The good news is they can be made up to 3 days in advance and stored in single layers in a closed container, with waxed paper between each layer.

We have these wontons every year for Christmas and New Year’s Eve.  I like to serve them with dipping sauces – our favorites are hoisin, sweet and sour, and duck sauce.



  • Servings: 48 wontonbs
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  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 2 tsp. dried thyme
  • 6 Tblsp. parmesan cheese, grated
  • Salt/pepper to taste
  • 12 oz. package of wonton wrappers (about 48)
  • Peanut oil for frying
  • ¼ cup water mixed with 1 tsp. cornstarch

In a small bowl or food processor, combine cream cheese, sour cream, thyme, parmesan, salt/pepper and mix until smooth.


Lay out a piece of waxed paper and place 9 wonton wrappers on it.  Keep remaining wrappers covered with waxed paper.  On each wrapper, place a tsp. of filling.
Dip a finger into the water/cornstarch mixture and moisten the edges of the wrapper.  Bring one corner up to form a triangle and seal.  Bring the two side points together and twist to seal.
Place the finished wrapper on an ungreased sheet and cover sheet with waxed paper while completing the rest of the wrappers.

The wontons can be fried immediately or can be refrigerated for up to 3 days in a covered container.  Place wontons in a single layer and separate with pieces of waxed paper.

To fry the wontons, heat about 2 inches of peanut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.

Fry the wontons in a single layer, turning once to brown on both sides.
Remove fried wontons to a piece of paper towel to drain and serve immediately.  Wontons can be kept warm in a 170 degree F oven for 10-15 minutes and still retain their crispness.

Makes about 48 wontons.  Serve with dipping sauces of your choice.