Scotcharoos:
Adapted from a recipe from AllRecipes.com

1C light corn syrup
1C white sugar
1 1/2C peanut butter
6C rice crispys
1 bag butterscotch chips
1 bag semisweet chocolate chips (regular chocolate chips are okay, but kind of overpoweringly sweet!)

1. Grease (pereferably with butter) a 9×13 baking pan. If you don’t, you’ll be sorry–these things are stickystickysticky!

2. Mix corn syrup, sugar and peanut butter together in a pot over medium heat, stirring until melted. Bring just to a boil (watch out for burning!), and then remove from heat and quickly stir in rice crispys. This may work better by transferring the peanut butter mixture to a big bowl containing the rice crispys, or using an oversized pan on the stove.

3. Pour/scoop/transfer the rice crispy-peanut butter mixture to the greased pan. Push it into place with a spoon or your hands. It should be cool enough to touch at this point. It helps if you grease your hands or the spoon with a little bit of cooking spray.

4. Melt over low heat the butterscotch chips and the chocolate chips until just barely melted. Be careful not to burn them! Spread over the tops of the cereal-peanut butter mix and let cool.

*****

Enchiladas:
Sauce recipe from my great-aunt, the rest I made up from scratch based on a variety of recipes out there in random cookbooks

Sauce:
1/2C oil
2 onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 small cans tomato paste
3C water
1tsp each oregano, salt, cayenne pepper
4tsp chili powder
2tsp vinegar
2tsp sugar

Fillings:
4C mexican blend shredded cheese
2C monterey jack shredded cheese
2 small cans green chilies
1 large can sliced black olives or 2 small cans diced black olives
2C sour cream
3C mushrooms, sliced
1 onion, chopped

Also:
tortillas, corn or flour
3tbsp butter

1. Heat the oil for the sauce, and add the onions, garlic and tomato paste. Simmer 3 minutes. Add the rest of the sauce ingredients and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occassionally. May need more salt/pepper/cayenne pepper to taste.

2. Saute the mushrooms and onions for the fillings in the butter for about 15 minutes, then set aside to cool.

3. Mix the shredded cheeses, green chilies, black olives, and sour cream.

Optional: Slightly fry tortillas in hot oil to make them crisper. I don’t think this is necessary, but it’s how my mom does it.

4. When the sauce is done and has cooled a bit (beware burned fingers), dip a tortilla (both sides) in it to thoroughly coat, fill with the mushroom/onion mix, then the cheese mix. Roll and place in glass baking dish (helpful to put a little sauce on the bottom of the dish). When the dish is full, pour extra sauce over the enchiladas and sprinkle some extra cheese on top.

5. Bake at 350°F for about 25 minutes.Serve with refried beans, sour cream, and diced tomatos and lettuce.

This makes about 10-12 enchiladas, depending on how full you fill the tortillas.

*****

Pie Crust with V*dka:
From the December issue of CI:

2 1/2 C unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon stable salt
2 tablespoons sugar
12 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1/2 C cold vegetable shortening, cut into 4 pieces
1/4 C cold v*dka
1/4 C cold water

1. Process 1 1/2 C flour, salt and sugar in food processor until combined, about 2 one-second pulses. Add butter and shortening and process until homogenous dough just starts to collect in uneven clumps, about 15 seconds (dough will resemble cottage cheese curds and there should be no uncoated flour). Scrape bowl with rubber spatula and redistribute dough evenly around processor blade. Add remaining cup flour and pulse until mixture is evenly distributed around bowl and mass of dough has been broken up, 4 to 6 quick pulses. Empty mixture into medium bowl.

2. Sprinkle v*dka and water over mixture. With rubber spatula, use folding motions to mix, pressing down on dough until dough is slightly tacky and sticks together. Divide dough into two even balls and flatten each into 4-inch disks. Wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.

The dough may require up to 1/4 C flour to roll out. Enjoy! This is one of the best pie crusts ever!

*****

Daffodil Sponge Cake:
From a Southern Living Cookbook
I guarantee you that this recipe will get nearly every bowl you own dirty, as well as most of your kitchen, but it’s so incredibly tasty.

1C sifted cake flour
1/2C sugar
4 egg yolks
1/2tsp lemon extract
10 egg whites
1tsp cream of tartar
1/2tsp salt
3/4C sugar
1/2tsp vanilla extract
Lemon Glaze
Garnishes: lemon roses, fresh lemon balm leaves

1. Sift flour and 1/2C sugar together 3 times; set aside.

2. Beat egg yolks at high speed of an electric mixer 4 minutes or until thick and pale. Add lemon extract; beat at medium speed 5 minutes or until thick. Set aside.

3. Beat egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt at high speed just until foamy. Gradually add 3/4C sugar, 2T at a time, beating until stiff peaks form and sugar dissolves (2 to 4 minutes).

4. Sprinkle one-fourth of flour mixture over beaten egg whites; gently fold in, using a rubber spatula. Repeat procedure with remaining flour mixture, adding one-fourth of mixture at a time. Divide egg white mixture in half.

5. Fold vanilla into half of egg white mixture. gently fold beaten egg yolk mixture into remaining egg white mixture.

6. Drop batters alternately by spoonfuls into an ungreased 10-inch tube pan. Gently swirl batter with a knife to create a marbled effect.

7. Bake at 350° for 45-50 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Invert pan, and cool 40 minutes. Loosen cake from sides of pan using a narrow metal spatula; remove from pan. Place on a serving plate.

8. Drizzle cake with Lemon Glaze. Garnish, if desired.

Lemon Glaze:

1 1/2C sifted powdered sugar
1tsp grated lemon rind
1/8tsp lemon extract
2 to 3tbl lemon juice

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl, stirring until smooth.

*****

Dutch Babies
or, if you prefer, Puffed Oven Pancakes
From the Betty Crocker Cookbook (I think)

3 eggs
1/2C milk
1/2C flour
1/8tsp salt
2Tbl butter

1. Put the 2Tbl butter into a frying pan and place the pan in the oven. Preheat to 400°. Yes, put the pan in there during the preheat. It melts the butter.

2. Beat the eggs with a whisk. Blend in the remaining ingredients.

3. Pour into pan on top of melted butter. Bake at 400° for 20min or so. Should be light and fluffy and puffed up along the edges of the pan.

4. Cool slightly before eating. Don’t worry if if deflates a bit.

I eat this “as is”, since the butter makes for a nice topping. John puts syrup on it, and it’s also great with jam or just about anything else that you’d put on a pancake. So long as whatever the topping is goes well with butter.