"providing you with recipes to help make you the best cook in the neighborhood"

 Cella's News

April 2008



Just a Worm?
Ephesians 2:10

A little green worm was crawling around

a farmers garden one day.

He startled the worm by stooping right down

to hear what it had to say.

Because he was prone to pity himself,

this creature was seldom seen,

He thought of himself as just a worm,

worthless and ugly and green.

The man shared ways worms blessed the ground,

enriching the fruit of the earth.

The worm wore a smile and perked right up,

considering what he was worth.

Our cute little worm points out the fact

that persons are often depressed.

They think of themselves in negative terms

and seldom achieve life's best.

(David Y. Bevington)

It's great yard-working weather and I know that some of you would rather be outside raking and planting than inside cooking.  Me too.  Only, I thought I saw a black snake with yellow dots on it in one of my flower beds.  My neighbor lady said it was probably a certain type of rare salamander.  She's probably right.  She seems to know the names of all the flowers around and the critters as well.  What a relief.  I hate snakes, but dislike salamanders less.  Fortunately for me that flower bed has been raked of leaves and I won't be going near it for a long time.  I've got to concentrate on planting flowers and vegetables after I get my blueberry bushes mulched.  One of my co-workers told me about a web site squarefootgardening.com and I'm considering trying to make a 4x4 foot framed bed with Mel Bartholomew's recipe of 1/3 peat moss, 1/3 coarse vermiculite, and 1/3 compost with 12-inch grids for planting whatever my heart desires.  You'll have to visit Mel's site to find out exactly the type of ingredients used.  As the prices of veggies keep going up in the store, why not consider growing some organic vegetables of your own this year?  If you're new to gardening, I think the square foot gardening just might get you excited about planting your own food.  Fresh is best.  Get the kids involved.

I've got a couple of crock pot meat recipes this month that will be great for eating when you come in from working in the yard.  For diabetics that might feel left out for having a nice refreshing cold drink, besides water or unsweetened tea, why not try my Italian Cream Soda.  Just a small juice glass hits the spot.  For cold days, try the cocoa.

The pork dishes with rosemary were ideas I got from a Suzanne Somers Cookbook.  I've never cooked meat with rosemary.  Rest assured, your house will smell enticingly wonderful while the meat bakes and I guarantee that it'll taste great.  I had to laugh and shake my head when I served my rosemary-covered meat to my neighbor.  He asked if he was suppose to eat the pine needles on top.  Yes, of course, eat the pine needles (rosemary).  Many at our church dinner raved about the shoulder roast.  Who knew something this great was so easy to make.  Just remember to baste the meat every half hour and you'll have success.

If you can't make up your mind whether to make the pulled pork in the crock pot or the pork and gravy, make both.  Divvy up the meat between the barbecue sauce and the gravy when you shred it.  Great way to try two recipes at once.

I shared some of my channa dal soup at work with Shashi Khanna and the next day he brought me some of his stuffed Indian Bread as well as the recipe.  The bread is excellent and fun to make.  I opened mine up and added more diced raw jalapeno and onions and loaded it up with sour cream.  Yumm.  Be sure and try this recipe when you're inside on a rainy day.

Low-Carb Hot Cocoa
(Good for diabetics - Marcella)

Note:  When you compare the carbohydrates in heavy cream with milk, you'll see why I call this low-carb cocoa.  You can adjust the amount of cocoa and Xylitol as desired.

1/3 cup heavy cream
2/3 cup water
1 1/2 tablespoons Hershey's cocoa powder
2 tablespoons Xylitol sugar

Place heavy cream, water, cocoa powder, and Xylitol sugar in a small saucepan.  Use a whisk to combine ingredients until smooth.  Heat until hot.  Serves 1.

Low-Carb Italian Cream Soda
(Good for diabetics - Marcella)

Note:  Don't let the heavy cream in the recipe scare you off.  Good ice cream is made with heavy cream.  This recipe reminds me of ice cream melting in a root beer float.  Buy the good vanilla extract.  Try this recipe first in a small juice glass.  This size is always sufficient for me.

1/2 juice glass Club Soda
1/2 juice glass heavy cream
capful Watkins pure vanilla extract

Combine Club Soda, heavy cream, and vanilla extract in a small juice glass.  Stir and drink immediately.

Rosemary and Garlic Pork Shoulder Roast

7 pound pork shoulder roast
salt and pepper
10 whole garlic cloves
2 tablespoons rosemary, dried
Mixture of 1/2 cup white cooking wine and 1/2 water for basting meat every half hour

Place pork shoulder roast in a large baking pan.  Salt and pepper meat.  Use a long sharp knife to cut 10 deep slashes into meat from top.  Insert whole garlic cloves into meat slashes.  Sprinkle rosemary on top of meat, rubbing it in with your hand.  Mix together 1/2 cup white cooking wine and water.  Baste this mixture onto the meat.  Place meat, uncovered, in 400 degree oven and bake for 30 minutes to crust meat.  Turn oven down to 325 and baste meat.  It is important to baste the meat every half hour with basting mixture and meat juices until tender (180 degrees internal temperature for slicing meat or 190 to 195 for meat falling apart).  If you need more basting sauce, make another batch.  Don't cook meat over 325 degrees or meat juices will burn in pan.    

Rosemary and Garlic Country Pork Ribs

Note:  The Country Ribs are less expensive than ribs and have lots more meat. - Marcella)

1 four-pound package country ribs (6 to 8 pieces)
salt and pepper
2 tablespoons rosemary, dried
minced garlic for topping ribs
olive oil to coat and baste ribs

Place country ribs in a baking pan, salt and pepper, sprinkle with rosemary, and top with minced garlic.  Brush top of meat with olive oil.  Place in a 325 degree oven, uncovered.  It is important to baste meat every half hour until meat is tender with meat juices and additional olive oil as needed, about 2 hours.

Barbecued Pulled Pork
(Renee Kraczyk)

Note: Cook in crock pot for 7 hours.

5-lb. boneless pork loin
garlic powder
19-oz. jar Jack Daniel's Barbecue Sauce or your own favorite barbecue sauce

Cut pork loin in thirds and place in a crock pot, resting on rack, or jar rings.  Sprinkle meat with garlic powder.  Cover crock pot (do not add any water, it will make its own) and cook on high until fork tender, about 7 hours.  Remove meat and shred with forks.  Drain liquid out of crock pot and discard or save for another use.  Place shredded meat back in crock pot and stir in barbecue sauce.  Heat until hot and serve on buns.

Pulled Pork and Gravy
(Renee Kraczyk)

Note: Cook in crock pot for 7 hours.

5-lb boneless pork loin
2 (12-oz.) jars Heinz Home Style Pork Gravy

Cut pork loin in thirds and place in a crock pot, resting on rack, or jar rings.  Sprinkle meat with garlic powder.  Cover crock pot (do not add any water, it will make its own) and cook on high until fork tender, about 7 hours.  Remove meat and shred with forks.  Drain liquid out of crock pot and discard or save for another use.  Place shredded meat back in crock pot and stir in pork gravy.  Heat until hot and serve on buns.

Mexican Cheesecake
(Deanne Rodriquez)

Note:  I liked this best served warm with the cream cheese oozing out - the cinnamon sugar mixture on top reminds me of warm cinnamon-sugar donuts - Marcella.

2 (10.1-oz.) tubes big and buttery Crescent rolls
2 (8-oz.) Philadelphia original cream cheese, softened
3/4 white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon butter (for top)
1/2 cup white sugar (for top)
1 teaspoon cinnamon (for top)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line bottom of ungreased 9x13x2-inch cake pan with one package of crescent rolls.  In a mixing bowl, mix together the cream cheese, 3/4 cup white sugar, and vanilla until smooth.  Spread mixture on top of crescent roll.  Place 2nd package of crescent rolls on top of cream cheese layer.  In a small bowl, use a fork to mix together the butter, 1/2 cup white sugar, and the cinnamon.  Sprinkle on top of cake.  Bake for 30 minutes.  

Stuffed Parantha
(Stuffed Indian Flatbread - Shashi Khanna

Note:  This Stuffed Indian Flatbread can be served with yogurt or sour cream.  I loved it with the sour cream.  I even opened up the flatbread and added more onions and hot peppers.  This is a good recipe to use with leftover mashed potatoes.  Easy to make.  Just have all your ingredients ready at the same time.

1 cup King Arthur unbleached white whole wheat flour
2 2/3 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 cup water

3/4 cup boiled mashed potatoes, cooled
salt and pepper
4 teaspoons Serrano or Jalapeņo pepper, finely diced
4 teaspoons finely diced onion
4 pinches cayenne pepper (red ground pepper)

Butter or Ghee for frying bread
Serve with sour cream or yogurt

Dough:  Use a fork to combine the flour, butter, and water in a small mixing bowl.  Turn out onto a very lightly floured work surface and gently knead the dough until no longer sticky and elastic; just a couple of minutes.  Divide dough into 4 equal balls.  Use fingers and heels of hands to form dough into 4-inch circle.  Use a rolling pin if needed.  Lightly salt and pepper mashed potatoes and divide dough into 4 equal portions.  Filling:  Place one portion of potatoes in middle of dough, using a spoon to distribute evenly in a 3-inch circle.  Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of  peppers and 1 teaspoon of onions.  Lightly sprinkle on cayenne pepper.  Use fingers of both hands to pull up the outside dough around circle, carefully bunch up the rolled up dough and roll it under and place it on top of the dough circle.  Use a floured rolling pin to gently roll an 8-inch circle, being careful not to push too hard and break into filling.  Keep rolling pin floured throughout and you shouldn't have any trouble.  Heat a skillet (cast iron if you have one) and brush with ghee (clarified butter) or butter, place one filled dough in skillet and cook until lightly browned on bottom.  Meanwhile, brush ghee or butter on top of dough that is cooking.  Turn dough over and cook other side until lightly browned.  Turn onto paper towels.  Repeat with other dough and ingredients.  Serve warm.

Send your favorite family recipes to Marcella Stockin, 5200 Riceville Road, West Valley, New York 14171 or e-mail me at marcellastockin@yahoo.com.  I'd love to hear from you.  Providing you with recipes to help make you the best cook in the neighborhood.  Visit my website at cellascookbook.com for more recipes and archived newsletters.