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October Recipes

HARVEST PUMPKIN-SPICE BARS

You'll fall in love with these pumpkin bars! They have a light texture, are full of cinnamon, ginger, raisins and nuts and, best of all, are topped with cream cheese frosting!

4    Eggs

2    Cups Granulated Sugar

1    Cup Vegetable Oil

1    Can (15 oz) Pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)

2    Cups Gold Medal™ All-purpose Flour

2    tsp. Baking Powder

2    tsp. Ground Cinnamon

1    tsp. Baking Soda

1/2 tsp. Salt

1/2 tsp. Ground Ginger

1/4 tsp. Ground Cloves

1    Cup Raisins (if desired)

Cream Cheese Frosting:

1    pkg. (3 oz) Cream Cheese (softened)

1/3 Cup Butter or Margarine (softened)

1    tsp. Vanilla

2    Cups Powdered Sugar

1/2 Cup Walnuts (chopped) if desired

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease bottom and sides of 15x10x1 inch pan with shortening. In large bowl, beat eggs, granulated sugar, oil and pumpkin until smooth. Stir in flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, ginger and cloves. Stir in raisins. Spread in pan.

Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until light brown. Cool completely in pan on cooling rack, about 2 hours.

In medium bowl, beat cream cheese, butter and vanilla with electric mixer on low speed until smooth. Gradually beat in powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, on low speed until smooth and spreadable. Spread frosting over bars. Sprinkle with walnuts. For bars, cut into 7 rows by 7 rows. Store in refrigerator. Servings 49 Bars.

To ensure recipe success if using a vegetable oil spread, use a spread with at least 65% vegetable oil.

If using self-rising flour, there is no need to add baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Add a bit of lemon zing to the cream cheese frosting by substituting lemon juice for the vanilla and adding 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel.

Recipe From: Betty Crocker Cookbook


PUMPKIN BANANA SMOOTHIE

This pumpkin banana smoothie has a hint of cinnamon and brown sugar for a delicious on-the-go breakfast in the fall.

1 Cup Pumpkin Puree

1 Cup Milk

1 Banana (sliced)

2 Tbsp. Brown Sugar

1/4 tsp. Ground Cinnamon

1/4 tsp. Vanilla Extract

Spoon pumpkin puree into a re-sealable bag and freeze, 8 hours to overnight. Remove pumpkin from freezer and allow to soften at room temperature, 5 to 10 minutes. Pour milk into the blender; add pumpkin, banana, brown sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla extract. Blend until smooth, about 3 minutes. Servings: 2


CHUNKY APPLE CAKE

with CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

This fruit-filled sheet cake is packed with Granny Smith apple slices and toasted walnuts and covered with a thick, rich cream cheese frosting.

1/2 Cup Butter (melted)

2    Cups sugar

2    Large Eggs

1    tsp. vanilla extract

2    Cups All-purpose Flour

1    tsp. Baking Soda

1    tsp. Salt

2    tsp. Ground Cinnamon

4    Granny Smith Apples (peeled and sliced)

1    Cup Walnuts (toasted, chopped)

      Cream Cheese Frosting

      Chopped walnuts (toasted, optional garnish)

Stir together first 4 ingredients in a large bowl until blended.

Combine flour and next 3 ingredients; add to butter mixture, stirring until blended. Stir in apple slices and 1 cup walnuts. Spread into a greased 13- x 9-inch pan. Batter will be very thick.

Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Spread with Cream Cheese Frosting; sprinkle with walnuts, if desired.  Yield: 12 to 15 servings


CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

1 (8 oz.) Package Cream Cheese (softened)

3 Tbsp. Butter or Margarine (softened)

1 1/2 Cups Powdered Sugar

1/8 tsp. Salt

1 tsp. Vanilla Extract

Beat cream cheese and butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add sugar and salt, beating until blended. Stir in vanilla. Yield: 1 2/3 cups


SIMPLE ROAST CHICKEN

This simple roast chicken recipe is from chef Thomas Keller. It's an essential, delicious chicken recipe any cook can master and enjoy.

1   2 to 3 lb. Chicken

     Salt

     Freshly Ground Black Pepper

2   tsp. Thyme (minced, optional)

     Unsalted butter

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Rinse the chicken, then dry it very well with paper towels, inside and out. The less it steams, the drier the heat, the better.

Salt and pepper the cavity, then truss the bird. When you truss a bird, the wings and legs stay close to the body; the ends of the drumsticks cover the top of the breast and keep it from drying out. Trussing helps the chicken to cook evenly, and it also makes for a more beautiful roasted bird.

Salt the chicken— rain the salt over the bird so that it has a nice uniform coating that will result in a crisp, salty, flavorful skin (about 1 tablespoon). When it's cooked, you should still be able to make out the salt baked onto the crisp skin. Season to taste with pepper.

Place the chicken in a roasting pan and, when the oven is up to temperature, put the chicken in the oven. Leave it alone— don't baste it, Don't add butter; you can if you wish, but this creates steam, which you don't want. Roast it until it's done, 50 to 60 minutes. Remove it from the oven and add the thyme, if using, to the pan. Baste the chicken with the juices and thyme and let it rest for 15 minutes on a cutting board.

Remove the twine. Remove the legs and thighs. Cut the breast down the middle and serve it on the bone, with one wing joint still attached to each. The preparation is not meant to be super-elegant. Slather the meat with fresh butter. Serve with a simple green salad. Makes 2 to 4 servings.


SOUTHWESTERN VEGETABLE & CHICKEN SOUP

This hearty chicken vegetable soup tastes even richer with the smoky flavor from roasted poblano peppers and garlic. Serve this savory soup with tortilla chips.

2       Medium Poblano Peppers

2       tsp. Canola Oil

12     oz. Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs (cut into bite-size pieces)

1 1/2 Cups Onion (1 large, chopped)

1 1/2 Cups Red or Green Bell Pepper (1 large, chopped)

1 1/2 Cups Green Beans (cut into 1/4 inch pieces, or frozen, thawed)

4       Cloves Garlic (minced)

1       Tbsp. Chili Powder

1 1/2 tsp. Ground Cumin

6       Cups Chicken Broth

1       15 oz. Can Black Beans or Pinto Beans (rinsed)

1       14 oz. Can Diced Tomatoes

4       Cups Chard or Spinach (chopped)

1 1/2 Cups Corn (fresh or frozen)

1/2    Cup Fresh Cilantro (chopped)

1/2    Cup Fresh Lime Juice (plus lime wedges for serving)

To roast poblanos: Position oven rack about 5 inches from the heat source; preheat broiler. Line the broiler pan with foil. Broil whole poblanos, turning once, until starting to blacken, 8 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a paper bag and let steam to loosen skins, about 10 minutes. When the poblanos are cool enough to handle, peel, seed, stem and coarsely chop; set aside.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a large soup pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook, turning occasionally, until lightly browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

Reduce the heat to medium and add onion, bell pepper, green beans and garlic. Cook, stirring, until beginning to soften, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in chili powder and cumin and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in broth, beans, tomatoes and the chopped poblanos; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes.

Add the reserved chicken and juices, chard (or spinach) and corn; return to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes more to heat through and blend flavors.

Top each portion with 1 tablespoon each cilantro and lime juice; serve with lime wedges. 8 servings, about 1 1/2 cups each.


SPLIT PEA SOUP WITH ROSEMARY

Rosemary gives this earthy soup a unique herbal flavor.

6       Slices Bacon (cut into 1 inch pieces)

1       Small Onion (chopped)

1       Leek (thinly sliced)

1       Large Carrot (chopped)

2       Cloves Garlic (minced)

4       (10.5 oz.) Cans Chicken Broth

1 1/2 Cups Green Split Peas

2       Bay Leaves

1       tsp. Fresh Rosemary (chopped)

Place bacon in a large pot, and cook over medium heat until crisp. Stir in onion, leek, carrot, and garlic; cook until the vegetables are soft, about 8 minutes. Pour in chicken broth. Stir in split peas, bay leaves, and rosemary. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low; cover, and simmer until peas are cooked, about 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Servings: 6


ACORN STACKS

1 Box Mini Nilla Wafers

1 Bag Mini Peanut Butter Chips

1 Bag Hershey Kisses

1 Tub Chocolate Frosting

For each acorn place a dab of frosting on the bottom of a mini peanut butter chip and stick it in the middle of the top side of a mini nilla wafer. Unwrap a hershey kiss and place a larger dab of frosting on the bottom of it and stick it fast to the underside of the nilla wafer.

Display them in a pretty Fall themed dish and enjoy. Make as many as you have kisses for or as you prefer.

Recipe From: Mary Black


HALLOWEEN CHEESE FINGERS

Add a little fun to your Halloween party spread with these simple yet spine-tingling cheese fingers!

String Cheese Sticks

Cream Cheese (soft)

Red and Green Bell Peppers

Cut red and green bell peppers into fingernail-shaped squares. Slice each string cheese stick in half.

Attach bell peppers to uncut end of string cheese using a tiny dab of cream cheese as the glue.

Use the back of a butter knife to add knuckle lines to each finger.

*Nothing like disguising something healthy into a ghoulish treat this Halloween. The kids will love them!


CHICKEN BARLEY SOUP WITH MUSHROOMS

A bit of sherry vinegar brightens up this earthy soup.

1 1/2 Tbs. Olive Oil or Canola Oil

2       Cups Onion (finely chopped)

2       Cups Celery (finely chopped)

         Salt

2       tsp. Fresh Thyme (chopped)

3       qts. Homemade Chicken Broth or Low-salt Chicken Broth*

3 1/2 to 4 Cups Chicken (cooked, shredded)

3       Cups Barley (cooked until barely tender)

3/4    Lb. Swiss Chard (stemmed, cut into 1/2" pieces)

4       oz. Oyster Mushrooms (stemmed and sliced)

4       oz. Shiitake Mushrooms (stemmed and sliced)

1       tsp. to 2 Tbs. Sherry Vinegar

         Freshly Ground Black Pepper

         Freshly Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (for serving, optional)  

*Tip: You can use the meat from a store-bought rotisserie chicken if you use canned broth.

Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large (at least 8 quart), heavy-duty pot or Dutch oven. Add the onion, celery, and 1/2 Tbs. salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened and lightly browned in places, 4 to 6 minutes. Add the thyme and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds.

Add the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring, until the vegetables are completely tender, 20 to 30 minutes.

Stir in the reserved shredded chicken, barley, chard, and mushrooms. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until all are tender and the flavors meld, 5 to 10 minutes.

Stir in 1 tsp. of the vinegar. Taste, and add more vinegar, 1 tsp. at a time, if needed, up to 2 Tbs. Season with salt and pepper to taste and garnish each bowl with a 1 Tbs. of the grated cheese, if you like. Serves 6-8


PUMPKIN FUDGE

Pumpkin lovers will sing songs of praise over this holiday confection! Creamy and smooth, it will end any meal happily.

2       Tbsp. Butter

2 1/2 Cups Sugar

2/3    Cup Evaporated Milk

1       Cup White Chocolate Chips

7       oz. Marshmallow Creme

3/4    Cup Canned Pumpkin

1       tsp. ground Cinnamon

1       tsp. Vanilla Extract

Line a 9x9 inch pan with parchment paper, and set aside.

In a 3 quart saucepan, heat milk and sugar over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.

Mix in pumpkin puree and cinnamon; bring back to a boil. Stir in marshmallow creme and butter. Bring to a rolling boil. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 18 minutes.

Remove from heat, and add white chocolate chips and vanilla. Stir until creamy and all chips are melted. Pour into prepared pan. Cool, remove from pan, and cut into squares. Store in a cool, dry place. Servings: 16


HEARTY POT ROAST

1   Beef Shoulder Roast Boneless (2 to 2 1/2 lbs.)

1   Tbsp. Vegetable Oil

1/2 tsp. Salt

1    lb. Small Red-skinned Potatoes (cut in half, or into quarters if large)

4   Medium Carrots (cut into 2 1/2" pieces)

2   Medium Parsnips (cut into 2 1/2" pieces)

1   Small Leek, (white and pale green parts only, cut in half lengthwise then crosswise into 1 1/2 inch pieces)

1  Cup Beef Broth

4  Tbsp. Water

2  Tbsp. Cornstarch

Seasoning:

2 tsp. Seasoned Pepper Blend or Garlic-Pepper Seasoning

1 Tbsp. Minced Garlic

Combine seasoning ingredients; press evenly onto all surfaces beef roast. Heat oil in stock pot over medium heat until hot. Brown roast on all sides. Pour off drippings and season beef with salt.

Add broth to stock pot; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover tightly and simmer 2 hours. Add vegetables; continue cooking, covered, 30 to 45 minutes or until roast and vegetables are fork-tender.

Remove roast and vegetables; keep warm. Strain cooking liquid; skim fat, if necessary. Measure 2 cups cooking liquid (Add beef broth or water to cooking liquid to yield 2 cups, if necessary.); return to stock pot. Combine water and cornstarch; stir into cooking liquid. Bring to boil, stirring constantly; cook and stir 1 to 2 minutes or until mixture is thickened.

Carve roast into thin slices. Season with salt, as desired. Serve with vegetables and gravy. Makes 6 servings