The Odessa Record -

Recipe Column

Series: Recipe Column | Story 50

Many requests have come in for several cookie recipes. Peanut Butter Chocolate Toffee Crunch, brought by Shelly Hauge to a recent potluck, is a super sweet treat, especially appealing to young folks. It is easy to make, bakes quickly, but does require an hour of chilling time.

Peanut Butter

Chocolate Toffee Crunch

4 1/2 cups Reese’s Puffs cereal

1 cup butter

1 cup packed light brown sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla

1 bag (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips, melted

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

2 cups miniature pretzel twists, coarsely chopped

1/2 cup salted peanuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 15 x10 x 1 inch pan with parchment paper. Pour cereal in an even layer in pan, clustering cereal tightly. Set aside.

In a 2 quart saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add brown sugar, stirring until well blended. Heat to boiling; cook about 5 minutes or until dark golden brown. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla. Drizzle evenly over cereal, using a spatula to spread evenly.

Bake 10 minutes. Cool 3 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir melted chocolate and peanut butter until well blended. Drizzle over slightly cooled cereal layer, spreading evenly. Sprinkle with pretzels and peanuts. Press into chocolate mixture.

Refrigerate about 1 hour or until chocolate is set. Remove from pan; cut into 5 rows by 4 rows. Cut each square diagonally into 2 triangles. Yield: 40 triangles.

Gwen Clavell made Gluten-Free Cocoa Molasses Cookies for a recent women's event. If no one tells, you won’t know these are gluten free. The secret to bring out the chocolate flavor is a teaspoon of espresso powder, not enough to make it taste like coffee, but enough to enhance the chocolate flavor. Gwen found this easy to prepare recipe at The espresso powder is her addition.


Cocoa Molasses Cookies

1 3/4 cups Gluten-Free Multi-Purpose Flour

1/4 cup Dutch-process cocoa

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

3/4 tsp salt

1 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground ginger

3/4 tsp ground cloves

3/4 tsp xanthan gum

1 tsp espresso powder

3/4 cup butter

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 large egg

1/3 cup molasses

In a medium-sized bowl, combine gluten-free flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and xanthan gum.

In a separate bowl, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and molasses, scraping bowl between and after additions.

Add dry mixture and mix until just combined. Cover and refrigerate dough for at least one hour or overnight for optimum results.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheets with parchment paper.

Scoop tablespoon-sized amounts of dough and roll in sparkling or granulated sugar if desired. Place on prepared sheets allowing room to spread during baking.

Bake 8-11 minutes, or until set. Yield: 20-24 cookies.

St. Patrick's Day falls between recipe columns this year, and being mid-week, not the easiest day for many cooks to prepare a traditional boiled corned beef and cabbage dinner. Try this colorful and tangy Corned Beef and Cabbage Salad, a recipe I developed to utilize canned corned beef, a commodity the Food Bank got a lot of back when I was coordinator. (I am still looking for a copy of “How to Make Stone Soup When You Are Out of Stones”).

Corned Beef and Cabbage


1 can (12 ounces) corned beef

6 cups finely chopped green cabbage

1 cup grated carrot

4 green onions, thinly sliced

1/2 cup finely chopped red or green sweet pepper

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup prepared honey mustard salad dressing.

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1 tsp cider vinegar

1/8 tsp ground black pepper

Crumble corned beef into a medium skillet and cook over medium heat until fat is melted and runs freely but do not brown. Drain on paper towel lined plate and set aside to cool.

Meanwhile, combine cabbage, carrot, green onion and sweet pepper in a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle with salt and let stand while you prepare dressing.

In a small bowl, combine honey mustard salad dressing, mayonnaise, vinegar and black pepper, mixing well. Thin with a teaspoon or two of whole milk if dressing does not run easily from the spoon. Stir into cabbage mixture. Add corned beef when cooled, tossing ingredients gently to combine. Chill one hour before serving to blend flavors. Yield: 4-5 servings or 6-8 as a side salad.

Looking for a salad that can be made several days in advance? Italian Fisherman’s Salad, a recipe from the Basin Piecemakers Blog, is easy to prepare and is best made 2 days in advance.

Italian Fisherman’s Salad

1 pound vermicelli noodles

2 cups thinly sliced celery

1/2 cup each, red and green pepper

3 hard cooked eggs, peeled and chopped

1 pound crab or shrimp meat

3/4 cup sliced almonds for garnish

2 packages, Good Seasons Italian Dressing mix

2 cups buttermilk

2 cups mayonnaise

Cook and drain noodles according to package directions. Chill noodles. In a large mixing bowl, combine noodles, celery, peppers, eggs and seafood. In a medium bowl combine Italian Dressing mix with buttermilk and mayonnaise, mixing well. Pour over noodle mixture and toss well to coat noodles and vegetables.

Chill salad 48 hours before serving, it will firm up as flavors blend. Yield: about one gallon of salad.

Share your favorite recipes by sending them to: Welcome to My Kitchen, c/o The Odessa Record, P.O. Box 458, Odessa WA 99159, email or drop them in the Welcome to My Kitchen mail tin in The Odessa Record office. Good Friday, traditional potato planting day, is quite early this year. Considering how much rain we have had, I am waiting until the first week in April.


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