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By Laura Estes
Special to The Record-Times 

Welcome to My Kitchen


Last updated 6/16/2022 at 8:01am

Cool and rainy weather makes for a productive rhubarb year. I was asked how to freeze rhubarb so it works well in recipes. Freezing rhubarb is easy. Just slice or dice to desired size pieces, spread on cookie sheets in a single layer and freeze. When firm, package in airtight containers and return to the freezer.

Using frozen rhubarb requires a little attention to detail. For most recipes, do not thaw before using. Using in the frozen state will keep the end product from being mushy or soupy. Not too sweet, not too tart, Mom’s Rhubarb Cake, a recipe I found on, works well with either fresh or frozen rhubarb.

Mom’s Rhubarb Cake

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 Tbsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup butter or margarine

2/3 cup evaporated milk

1 egg, beaten

2 pounds rhubarb, cut in ¼-inch slices (about 6 cups)


1 package (3 ounces) raspberry or strawberry gelatin

1 cup granulated sugar, divided

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup butter or margarine

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Have a 9 x13-inch baking pan at the ready.

In a large mixing bowl, combine 2 cups all-purpose flour, brown sugar, baking powder and salt. With a pastry blender cut in 1/2 cup butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in evaporated milk and beaten egg.

Spread dough evenly in the bottom of baking pan.

In the same bowl combine rhubarb, gelatin and 1/2 cup of the granulated sugar. Scatter evenly over the dough in pan.

Again, in the same bowl, combine remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar and 1 cup all-purpose flour. Cut in remaining butter or margarine until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Top rhubarb with this streusel mixture.

Bake until the topping is golden brown and the filling is bubbly, about 45 to 50 minutes. Yield: 12-15 servings.

Sweet onion season has begun. Mild spring and early summer onions are delicious on hamburgers and sandwiches or tossed in salads. Vidalia Onion Relish, a recipe I found on, attributed to Janet Roth, Tempe, AZ, works equally well with Washington's own Walla Walla Sweet Onions. This is a savory sweet topping for all meat dishes.

Vidalia Onion Relish

4 large sweet onions, chopped

2 Tbsp canola oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/3 cup bourbon

4 plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped

1/2 cup golden raisins

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup, packed brown sugar

1/4 cup cider vinegar

1 tsp mustard seed

1/2 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp ground mustard

1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

1/4 tsp ground black pepper

In a large saucepan, cook onions in oil over medium heat 40 to 50 minutes or until onions are golden brown, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and cook 1 minute longer.

Remove from heat. Add bourbon, stirring to loosen the brown bits from the pan. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Return to stove and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered 15-20 minutes or until thickened.

Store in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Serve as a condiment with sausage or hamburger and other meats.

With the crazy weather this spring, I was sure there would be no fruit set on any of our trees, but to my surprise the Wolf River and the Harlequin have a fair amount showing. Coincidentally on that same day, I was asked to reprint the recipe I posted last year for a natural coddling moth trap.

They are not the prettiest thing hanging in your fruit trees but they sure catch lots of the moths and other bugs. In addition to the recipe ingredients, you will need gallon milk or similar type jugs.

Coddling Moth Traps

1 gallon milk jug, with cap

1 cup cider vinegar

1/3 cup dark molasses

1/2 tsp ammonia

Cut a small hole the size and shape of an egg, just below the shoulder of the jug opposite the handle. In a 2 quart measuring cup, combine vinegar, molasses and ammonia. Add enough water to make 2 quarts.

Pour mixture into prepared milk jug and replace the cap. Place in apple tree after the tree is done blooming, about now this year. Use a strip of cloth or sturdy twine to hang the jug by the handle from a sturdy branch.

As the season progresses, you will notice the mixture evaporating. Take a garden hose and add more water to the jug.

Keep the jug in the tree until after all apples are harvested. You will be amazed at how many moths have been trapped in the mixture. If your tree is large use 2 or 3 jugs spaced out in the tree.

Does it get them all? No, but in bugs and weeds, it is about control, not eradication.

Spring dill is volunteering itself in many local gardens. Dill Dip is a delicious way to use some of this prolific re-seeder. Delicious with raw vegetables, dressing for a salad or spread on hamburgers or sandwiches, it is especially good on many salmon presentations.

Dill Dip

1/2 cup minced fresh dill

1/4 tsp ground black pepper

1 cup mayonnaise

1 cup Greek yogurt or sour cream

1/2 tsp Accent (msg)

1/4 tsp onion powder

1/8 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp lemon juice.

Combine all ingredients and refrigerate at least 1 hour to develop flavors. Yield: 2 cups.

– Share your favorite recipes by sending them to: Welcome to My Kitchen, c/o The Record Times, P.O. Box 458, Odessa, WA, 99159, email or drop them in the Welcome to My Kitchen mail tin in the Odessa Record Office. Be sure to stir up the mulch in gardens and flower beds, watching for slugs showing up during these late spring rains.


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