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

 Cella's News

September 2006



When people buy my cookbook I always write in the front "Never trust a skinny Cook!!!"  Then, I follow it with my signature and one of my favorite scriptures.  Instead of a poem this newsletter, I leave you with this, one of my favorite scriptures.

Matthew 6:25 - 34 (words of Jesus)

Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on.  Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?

Behold the fowls of the air:  for they sow not neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them.  Are ye not much better than they?

Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?

And why take ye thought for raiment?  Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:

And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?

Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?

(For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness:  and all these things shall be added unto you.

Take therefore no thought for the morrow:  for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself.  Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

My two grandchildren from Long Island, New York came to visit  me and my husband in early August.  What a grand time we had.  They had lots of fun picking blueberries from the bushes in our back yard.

I devised a scavenger hunt for the two boys, Nicholas, seven, and James, five, to participate in, teaming them up with one of their parents.  They had to gather as many flowers as they could find on our one acre.  One team found over 40, the other over 60.  The boys got one coin for each flower they found. 

Then we had them digging potatoes and  gathering vegetables, filling their green and orange plastic pails.  They got to throw 10 rotten apples at the old apple trees and then find one good store-bought apple I'd hid at the base of the tree.  Earlier in the day the boys had been looking for wild strawberries in the area they found them in on a previous visit.  Of course there were none.  But, I had purchased organic strawberries and placed them on plants in in our new strawberry patch.  The boys were just as excited finding them as if had grown that way.  At night I had Nicholas and James gathering Carpathian walnuts from under the nut tree (nuts I had gathered last year and dried, and placed under the tree for them to find). I gave each of the boys a hammer and they spent the next three days on and off hammering away at the nuts and placing the nut meats in jars.  Nicholas gently tapped his nuts open, while James whalloped them open in one swift swoop, with my meat cleaver, sending shells and nuts flying all over the kitchen.  The boys never hammered on anything they shouldn't have and never whacked their fingers.  All told, Nicholas and James cracked 2 1/2 quarts of nuts.  When the boys and their parents left, they took some blueberries, potatoes, a jar of nuts, and more nuts to crack.  

On his return home, Nicholas was excited to show his cousin Natalie and Grandpa and Grandma Feltman the blueberries, potatoes, and nuts he'd help harvest.  Even though we went to the Hamburg Fair and on the Arcade-Attica Railroad, Nicholas couldn't wait to show his classmates at school the potatoes he dug.

James helped me make ice cream, chicken fingers, ketchup, and fresh lemonade.  Both boys got to mow hay with grandpa in his cab tractor.  I thought my favorite things were cooking and baking; nope, it's playing with the grandkids.

I have a variety of recipes to share with you this month.  I have made the Strawberry Pretzel Jello®, the Ramen Noodle Salad, and the Chocolate Zucchini cake twice.  I had a request for breakfast recipes and have included two good ones.  

Strawberry Pretzel Jello®
(Kim Gerwitz)

Note:  Make this Jello® the day before you need it.

Bottom Layer:
2 cups crushed pretzels
3/4 cup melted butter
3 tablespoons white granulated sugar

Middle Layer:
8-oz. package cream cheese, softened

1 cup confectioners sugar
8-oz. Cool Whip

Top Layer 
2 (3-oz.) packages strawberry Jello®
2 cups boiling water
16-oz. package frozen sliced strawberries, partially thawed

Bottom Layer:  Mix together pretzels, melted butter, and sugar.  Press into bottom of 9x13x2-inch ungreased pan.  Bake 8 minutes at 400 degrees.  Do not over bake.  Middle Layer:  Mix together cream cheese and confectioners sugar.  Stir in Cool Whip.  Spread on cooled pretzel layer.  Top Layer:  Add boiling water to Jello®.  Add partially thawed strawberries and mix.  Let stand until slightly set.  Pour over cream cheese mixture.  Refrigerate over night.

Chocolate Chip Zucchini Cake
(Sharon Underwood)

Note:  To make sour milk, just add a teaspoon of cider vinegar to milk.

1/2 cup softened butter
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 3/4 cups white granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup sour milk or buttermilk
4 tablespoons cocoa
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups grated zucchini

1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, oil, sugar, eggs, vanilla, milk, and cocoa.  Mix in flour, baking soda, and salt.  Stir in zucchini.  Spread in a 9x13x2-inch greased baking pan.  Make topping:  combine chocolate chips and walnuts.  Spread on top of unbaked cake.  Bake in 350 degree oven for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in middle of cake comes out clean.

Creamy Garlic House Dressing from the Steak Loft, Groton, CT.
(Sharon Underwood)

2 cups mayonnaise  
2 cups sour cream
1/2-oz. white wine

1/4 cup Half & Half
3 cloves garlic (or more to taste)
white pepper to taste

Finely chop the garlic cloves and mix all the ingredients together.  Refrigerate.

Ramen Noodle Salad
(Deanna Briggs)

Note:  To ensure that the noodles retain their crunch, make this salad minutes before serving.  You can make the dressing ahead of time and keep it cold in the refrigerate.

2 packages Ramen Noodles (Beef or Chicken)
1 lb. package Cole Slaw Mix (with carrots)
1 1/2 bunches scallions/green onions
1 cup toasted slivered almonds
1 cup sunflower seeds

3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup white wine vinegar
1/2 cup white granulated sugar
2 packets of beef or chicken seasoning (that came with noodles)

Break uncooked Ramen Noodles into tiny pieces.  Reserve packets for dressing.  Place uncooked noodles, Cole Slaw mix, scallions, almonds, and sunflower seeds in a large bowl.  Make Dressing:  Mix together oil, vinegar, sugar, and seasoning packets.  Mix into salad ingredients.  Ready to serve immediately.  

Roasted Tomato Dressing
(Will Samuel/Alice Arlow)

Note on recipe:  "The roasted tomato dressing is awesome!!!!  Use it on regular salads, as a Cole Slaw dressing, or on other vegetables, steamed or raw."

1 large ripe tomato, halved (about 8-oz.)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Preheat broiler.  Place tomato halves on an oiled broiler pan.  Broil 10 minutes or until blackened.  Cool 10 minutes, peel and core.  Combine roasted tomato, basil, olive oil, vinegar, sugar, Worcestershire sauce, sea salt, and black pepper in a blender.  Process until smooth.  

Pineapple Cake
(Stephanie Watson)

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
20-oz. can crushed pineapple, drained; reserve juice
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
3/4 cup chopped pecans
3/4 cups coconut

  In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, eggs, and pineapple juice.  Mix in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  Stir in the crushed pineapple.  Spread batter in a greased 13x9x2-inch baking pan.  Mix together the topping ingredients:  brown sugar, pecans, and coconut.  Sprinkle topping on unbaked cake and bake in 350 degree oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. 

This past month I've been introduced to the Hallelujah Acres web site (hacres.com).  This site has lots of Health Tips and recipes for people interested in eating more raw "live" foods.  How much raw food do you eat each day?  How much do you serve your family?  I discovered that I was cooking my food to death.  So, I took my brand new juicer out of the box and starting juicing carrots.  I started eating raw fruits and vegetables for breakfast and lunch.  I've included two raw food recipes for you to try.  The Fresh Corn Salad is excellent.  It's easy to incorporate more raw fruits and vegetables into our diet, we just need to plan ahead.  I made Melanie's Spaghetti Salad and would make it again.  I served the raw vegetables on hot spaghetti one night for supper.

Fresh Corn Salad
(Krishan Gupta)

kernels from 6 ears of corn on the cob, raw or cooked and cooled
1 medium red onion, diced
1 medium tomato, diced (more if desired)
1/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro
juice from 1 lime (use 1/2 lime juice if using raw corn)
1 teaspoon sea salt
3 teaspoons sugar (I used Xylitol)

Combine corn, onion, tomato, cilantro, lime juice, sea salt, and sugar.  Serve immediately.

Morning Mix-Up
(page 168 of Cella's Cookbook)

2 cups cooked potatoes, diced 1/4-inch
1 cup cooked ham, cubed
1/2 cup onion, diced
2 tablespoons Canola vegetable oil
6 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
4-oz. Cheddar cheese, shredded

In a large frying pan over medium heat, sauté potatoes, ham, and onion in oil until onion is translucent.  In a medium-size bowl, whisk together the eggs and salt.  Add to the cooked potato and ham mixture and cook, turning eggs from time to time until eggs are set.  Remove from heat and gently stir in cheese.  Cover until cheese melts.  Makes 4 servings.

Sausage Hash
(page 173 of Cella's Cookbook)

1 pound mild bulk pork sausage
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1/2 cup onion, diced
1/2 cup carrot, diced
1/2 cup green pepper, diced
3 cups potatoes, diced and cooked
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

In a large frying pan over medium heat, fry sausage in butter or margarine until meat is brown.  Add onion, carrots, and green pepper.  Cook until crisp tender.  Stir in cooked potatoes, salt, and black pepper.  Heat through.  Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Melanie's Spaghetti Salad with Mustard Dressing
(recipe from Hallelujah Acres)

1 pound whole grain spaghetti, cooked and cooled (or serve hot with raw toppings)
1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cup broccoli, cut into small pieces
2 carrots, finely chopped
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
1/2 small sweet red onion, finely chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, finely chopped

Mustard Dressing:

1/2 cup organic mustard (I used Dijon)
4 tablespoons Flax or Udo's Oil (I used Wesson canola vegetable oil)
2/3 cup pure maple syrup
1 teaspoon dill weed

Mix dressing ingredients together in blender to combine.  Stir into pasta and veggies.  Refrigerate (or serve on hot pasta).

Correction for August Cella's Corner:  For David's Frosted Brownies, Frosting:  Use 1/2 cup butter, not 1 cup.

Mail your family's favorite recipes to Marcella Stockin, 5200 Riceville Road, West Valley, New York 14171 or to marcellastockin@yahoo.com.  "Providing you with recipes to help make you the best cook in the neighborhood."  Visit http://www.cellascookbook.com for more great recipes and archived newsletters.