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Cooking with 'Friends': Carley Shimkus' Apple Cake

CARLEY SHIMKUS’ GRANDMA’S APPLE CAKE
Ingredients:

3 eggs
1½ c. sugar
2 c. flour
1¼ tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt
¾ c. canola oil
4 c. granny smith apples
1 c. chopped walnuts

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Peel and dice apples.
In a medium bowl, beat eggs and sugar at high speed for 4-5 minutes or until firm.
Sift together flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Add to egg and sugar mixture. Add oil and mix at medium speed until smooth. Fold in apples and nuts. Note that the batter will be thick.
Spread batter in ungreased 13”x9” pan.
Bake for 55 minutes to 1 hour.

Cooking with 'Friends': Sandra Lee's Spring Baking

SANDRA LEE’S SPRING BAKING:
Sur La Table’s Lemon Buttermilk Quickbread Mix 3-Ways

LEMON BUTTERMILK QUICKBREAD MUFFINS
Ingredients:

1 pkg. lemon quick bread mix (Sur La Table recommended)
Blueberries
Lemon glaze

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Prepare lemon quick bread according to package.
Add blueberry muffins to batter and bake in muffin tins.
Top with lemon glaze that comes with quick bread mix
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SANDRA’S “WEE WHOOPIES”
Ingredients:

1 pkg. lemon quick bread mix (Sur La Table recommended)
Pink, green or yellow food coloring
1 jar white frosting
Flavor extract (optional)

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Prepare lemon quick bread according to package. Add food coloring to desired shades of pink, green and yellow. Flavor with extract, if desidered.
Pipe in small disks onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Bake for 8-10 minutes. Let cool.
Pipe white frosting for filling.

Optional: Substitute white cake mix for lemon quick bread mix.
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LEMON CAKE WITH WARM STRAWBERRY SAUCE
Ingredients:

1 pkg. lemon quick bread mix (Sur La Table recommended)
¾ c. sugar
2 tbsp. cornstarch
¼ c. cranberry juice
16 oz. strawberries, fresh or frozen

Instructions:
Prepare and bake lemon quick bread according to package.
For the strawberry sauce: In a medium bowl whisk together sugar, cornstarch and cranberry juice. In a large skillet combine strawberries with cornstarch mixture. Stir together and bring to a simmer over medium heat making sure to stir often. Turn down heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
Pour the strawberry sauce over loaf.
 

Cooking with 'Friends': Mike Emanuel's Spanakopita

EMANUEL'S SPANAKOPITA
Ingredients:

2 bags of fresh spinach
1 bunch of dill
1 bunch of parsley
1 bunch of scallions, chopped
3 sticks butter
1 lb. feta cheese, crumbled
1 c. fontinella Cheese, grated
16 oz. cottage cheese
1 package filo dough, thawed and covered with a dish towel to keep moist
6 large eggs, beaten

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Steam cook the spinach, then make sure all liquid is removed from spinach. Wash and drain the dill and parsley. Then chop the spinach, dill and parsley.
In a large skillet, cook scallions in one stick of melted butter for 5 minutes.  Add the scallions to the chopped dill, parsley & spinach in a large bowl. 
With an electric mixer, cream together the cottage cheese, feta and fontinella cheeses with the eggs in a large bowl. Add the creamed mixture to the vegetable mixture and mix well. 
Melt 1-2 sticks of butter in a saucepan. Butter a 9”x13” baking dish. Brush butter onto filo dough one layer at a time and place 7 layers on the bottom of the baking dish. Put the spinach mixture on top of the 7 layers and then repeat the 7 layers buttered on top.
Press filo together to seal edges. Score the top layers of filo into rectangles with a knife. Bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes or until golden brown. 
 

Cooking with 'Friends': Steve Hilton's Chicken Soup

INGREDIENTS:
1 large whole chicken
1 large onion
4 large carrots
4 parsnips
4 sticks of celery
4 leeks (white part only)
1 bunch Italian parsley
3 tbsp.  garlic oil
3 tbsp. white vermouth (Noilly Prat recommended)
3 tbsp. salt
3 tbsp. peppercorns
1 bouquet garnish
Water

INSTRUCTIONS:
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Peel and roughly chop vegetables into chunks.
Press down on chicken firmly to crack breastbone and make it a bit flatter.
Put a large Dutch oven (oval shape is best) on the stovetop over low to moderate heat. Add the garlic oil and heat without burning for a couple minutes. Add the chicken and brown gently on both sides. Pour the white vermouth over the chicken and let it steam and evaporate for a minute. Add a bit of water to prevent ingredients from burning.
Add in as many of the vegetables as you can around and on top of the chicken. Then add the salt, peppercorns, bouquet garnish. Top the whole thing with water, right to the brim. Add in the bunch of parsley using a wooden spoon.
Put the lid on the Dutch oven and put it in the preheated oven. Cook for at least 1 hour 45 minutes, up to 2 and a half hours.

TO SERVE:
Put some rice on to cook - however much you need per person. Set up a couple of bowls and large dishes on the counter.
Remove vegetables from the Dutch oven and put them aside in a dish. Then remove the chicken - it should have started to fall apart a bit - and pick off the meat, putting it in small chunks alongside the vegetables.
Toss out the bones, skin, chicken carcass etc. along with bits of vegetables you don't want to eat.
Strain the remaining broth from the Dutch oven. Then top the rice with broth, chicken and vegetables.

 

Cooking with 'Friends': Adam Klotz's Chicken Spinach Casserole

CHICKEN SPINACH BAKE CASSEROLE
Ingredients:

4 c. dried rigatoni or penne pasta
2 chicken breasts, baked and shredded
3½ - 4 c. baby spinach
1⅓ c. light thickened cream
1 c. sun-dried tomatoes
1½ c. parmesan
1 c. shredded mozzarella

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 325°F. Lightly grease 9”x13” dish.
In a large pot, cook pasta then drain.  Add chicken, spinach, cream, tomatoes and 1 cup of parmesan into a large bowl. Toss well and season with salt and pepper. Add in cooked pasta.
Spoon pasta mix into baking dish. Top with remaining parmesan and mozzarella.
Bake until cheese is melted on top.

 

Cooking with 'Friends': Carl Cameron's 'Soup'er Bowl Recipes

NEW ENGLAND CLAM CHOWDER
Ingredients:

2 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 medium onion, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
2 tbsp. flour
2 c. vegetable stock
2 (10 oz.) cans chopped clams in juice
1 c. heavy cream
2 bay leaves
1 lb. Idaho potatoes, cubed into small pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Pan toasted croutons (recipe below)

Instructions:
Heat  butter in large pot over medium-high. Mix in onion and celery and sauté until soft. Stir in the flour until mixed thoroughly.
Add vegetable stock, juice from 2 cans of chopped clams (leave the clams out for now), heavy cream, bay leaves, and potatoes. Stir to combine.
Bring to a simmer, stirring consistently as it thickens, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cook 20 minutes, stirring often, until the potatoes soften.
Then add clams and season to taste with salt and pepper, cook until clams are just firm, another 2 minutes.
Garnish with pan toasted croutons.
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PAN TOASTED CROUTONS
Ingredients:

2 to 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 baguette, cut into 1-inch cubes
3 tablespoons freshly chopped flat-leaf parsley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper


Instructions:
Melt butter in skillet, toss the bread cubes in the butter until browned and toasted, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add parsley and season with salt and pepper.
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PATRIOT CHILI
This is an adaptation of the first New England chili recipe to win the National Chili Title in 2007. I have altered Jerry Buma's recipe for tiny steak tips instead of ground beef.
Makes 10 servings.
Ingredients:
2½  lbs. lean steak tips, diced to the size of sugar cubes
1½ tbsp.. vegetable oil
1 medium red pepper, diced
1 medium onion, diced
4 large garlic cloves, minced
3 serrano chiles, minced
1 (10½ oz.) can double-strength beef stock (or 2½ c. beef stock boiled down to 1¼ c.)
6 tbsp. chili powder
3 tbsp. cumin
¼ tsp. dry oregano
½ tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. sugar
1 (28 oz.) can petite diced tomatoes
1 (6 oz.) can tomato paste
1 (19 oz.) can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

Instructions:
In 7-quart pot over medium-low heat, sear tips to medium rare.  Then drain and discard most of the rendered fat.
In a separate medium-size pan over medium heat, add oil and cook red pepper, onion, garlic, and chiles just until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes.
Add cooked vegetable mixture, beef stock, spices, sugar, and diced tomatoes to the big pot and simmer 1 hour. Add tomato paste; stir well and cook another half-hour, stirring occasionally. 
 

Cooking with ‘Friends’: Sandra Lee’s Touchdown Treats

The queen of semi-homemade shares her recipes for a winning Super Bowl party menu. For more recipes like the ones below, head to www.SandraLee.com!

END ZONE PIZZA 
Ingredients:
1 can refrigerated thin pizza crust dough 11 oz, (Pillsbury® recommended)
⅔ c. pizza sauce
¾ c. mozzarella shredded
¾ c. cheddar shredded
pepperoni sliced
4 packets string cheese

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 400°F. Lightly spray a large, nonstick baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray.
Shape or trim the pizza dough into an oval and place in center of prepared pan.
Top with sauce and shredded cheddar and mozzarella, then arrange a generous layer of pepperoni in the middle - in the shape of a football.
Arrange string cheese to form laces.
Bake for 10 minutes, or until crust is deep golden brown and cheese is melted.
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KICKOFF CAKE 
Make an easy-to-transport flat cake but use a football-shaped mold for fun! Simply bake your cake, frost it with fudge and pipe football details using a star
tip. When making chocolate cake, use coffee (or chocolate milk if you don’t like coffee) instead of water.
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FOOTBALL COOKIES 
Makes 2 dozen
Ingredients:
1 package (16 oz.) refrigerated sugar cookie dough
1 jar (16 oz.) chocolate frosting
2 c. powdered sugar divided
½ tsp. vanilla extract
1-2 tbsp. water

Instructions:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
Roll dough into 1-inch balls and press to fatten into oval shapes. Pinch ends with your fingers and pat into a football shape about ¼ inch thick. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes, or until edges are golden. Transfer cookies to rack to cool completely before frosting.
In a bowl, with an electric mixer, combine frosting and 1 cup powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Spread each cookie with a heaping teaspoon of frosting. Let stand for icing to set, about 30 minutes.
In a small bowl, combine remaining 1 cup powdered sugar and vanilla. Stir in water, 1 teaspoon at a time, until icing is thick and smooth. Transfer to a pastry bag fitted with a small round tip and squeeze a line of icing down the middle of cookies. Cross the line with 4 short perpendicular lines to resemble the laces on a football.
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BLACK SNAKE BITE
Makes 16 servings
Ingredients:
1 c. cider
4 (12 oz.) bottles lager, chilled (Guinness® Black Lager recommended)
4 (12 oz.) bottles hard cider, chilled
8 oz. Captain Morgan® Black Spiced Rum
8 thin slices red apple

Instructions:
In a large pitcher, combine cider, lager, hard cider, and rum. Pour into 8 chilled pint glasses. Add an apple slice to each glass and serve.
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SPICY BLOODY MARY 
Ingredients:
1 tbsp. cocktail sauce (McCormick® Extra Hot or Original recommended)
½ oz. lemon juice
1½ oz. vodka (Smirnoff® vodka recommended)
2 dashes red hot pepper sauce
Dash celery salt
Dash ground black pepper
Dash Worcestershire sauce
Ice cubes
Garnish: Pickle spear, pimiento stuffed green olives on cocktail picks, celery sticks

Instructions:
In a large glass combine vegetable juice, cocktail sauce, lemon juice, vodka, hot pepper sauce, celery salt, black pepper, and Worcestershire sauce. Pour into another large glass. Pour back and forth between glasses until blended.
Fill a tall serving glass with ice. Strain mixture into ice-filled glass. Garnish with a pickle spear, olives, and celery sticks