RECIPE: SUMMER SALAD

  Austinite Carol Peterson sends this month’s recipe for a summer pea salad that she is “just like the one that was passed down through my family, from frontier times.”

Serves: 12

Ingredients

·       1/3 cup sour cream

·       1 Tablespoon mayonnaise

·       1 Tablespoon white vinegar

·       4 cups fresh green peas

·       8 slices bacon, cooked and chopped

·       1/2 small red onion, cut in half and sliced thin

·       6 ounces, cubed cheddar cheese

·       3 Tablespoons minced parsley

·       Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  Mix sour cream, mayonnaise, salt, pepper, and vinegar together to make the dressing. Stir 2/3 of the dressing into the peas until they are coated. Gently stir in the bacon, onion, cheese, and parsley. Taste and adjust seasonings. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate with extra dressing for 2-4 hours before serving.  

  Remove from the fridge, stir in the rest of the dressing to taste and sprinkle with parsley before serving.

RECIPE: SMASHED POTATOES

  Austinite Dede Larson sends this month’s recipe for yummy red potatoes that her grandmother made for her when she was a little girl. “Grandpop was a rancher and she used to feed this for dinner (lunch).”

Serves: 6

Ingredients

·       24 ounces yellow or red baby potatoes

·       2 tablespoons olive oil

·       3 cloves pressed garlic

·       1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

·       Kosher salt and ground black pepper

Directions

  Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Lightly oil a baking sheet or coat with nonstick spray.

  In a large pot of boiling water, cook potatoes until tender and drain. Place potatoes on the baking sheet. Using a serving fork, smash the potatoes until flattened but still in one piece. Top with olive oil, garlic and thyme.

  Place into oven and bake for 18-20 minutes, or until golden brown and crisp. Serve immediately.

RECIPE: HERSHEY CHOCOLATE CAKE

  Temple resident Dallas Simpson offers this month’s recipe for cake that her grandmother used to make, straight from a Milton Hershey recipe she got a century ago.

Serves: 12

Ingredients

·       2 cups sugar

·       1 ¾  cups all-purpose flour

·       ¾ cup Hershey's Cocoa

·       1 ½ teaspoons baking powder

·       1 ½ teaspoons baking soda

·       1 teaspoon salt

·       2 eggs

·       1 cup milk

·       ½  cup vegetable oil

·       2 teaspoons vanilla extract

·       1 cup boiling water

Directions

  Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans.

  Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans.

  Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans. Cool completely. Frost with chocolate frosting.

RECIPE: TRAIL BEEF STEW

  Pflugerville resident Jenny Sturgis sends along this recipe for a yummy stew that’s like the one her grandmother made.

Serves: 4-6

Ingredients

·       1 ½ lb. cubed beef stew meat

·       ½ cup flour

·       1½ teaspoons salt

·       ½ teaspoon pepper

·       ¼ cup vegetable oil

·       1 finely chopped onion

·       1 finely chopped carrot

·       ¼ cup finely chopped celery

·       1 tablespoon dried parsley

·       1 pinch thyme

·       3 ½ cups of beef broth

·       2 diced medium potatoes

·       2 diced carrots

·       2 diced onions

Directions

  Put flour, salt and pepper in a large plastic bag. Place meat in bag with the flour and shake until well coated. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven. Add meat pieces to the oil and stir until slightly browned, Add remaining flour from the bag and the chopped onion.

  Stir until well browned. Add finely chopped carrot, then celery, parsley, thyme and beef broth. Cover and cook over low heat for 1½ hours, stirring every 15 minutes. Add diced potatoes, carrots, and onions, cook for another 45 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

FEBRUARY PLANT TIPS

  From the Texas Farm Digest, 1896: “Sow beets, carrots, lettuce, mustard greens, peas, radishes, turnips and spinach in beds well worked and cultivated. Plant herbs in protected area from last frost. Ready beds for later spring planting, working the soil to a depth of at least four inches. Prune shrubs, hedges and fruit-bearing trees.”

 

RECIPE: CHOCOLATE BERRIES

  Longtime Austinite Claire Keller sends along this recipe from her grandmother, who she says used to dip seasonal berries in chocolate for a special treat throughout the year.

Serves: 18

Ingredients

·       1 pint medium-large strawberries

·       ½ cup semisweet chocolate chips or white vanilla baking chips

·       1 teaspoon shortening or vegetable oil

Directions

  Gently rinse strawberries and completely dry on paper towels. Line cookie sheet with waxed paper.

  Melt chocolate chips and shortening in 1-quart saucepan over low heat, stirring frequently. Remove from heat.

  Dip lower half of each strawberry into chocolate mixture, allowing excess to drip back into saucepan. Place on waxed paper-lined tray or cookie sheet.

  Refrigerate uncovered about 30 minutes or until chocolate is firm. Store covered in refrigerator. Serve with milk or cookies as dessert or afternoon treat.

RECIPE: COWBOY CAVIAR

  Austinite Donald Krueger sends this recipe a special “lucky dish” that his grandmother used to serve after the first of each New Year. “Eat it anytime in the month and you will have luck during the year,” he advises.

Serves: 12

Ingredients

·       1/2 cup olive oil

·       1/3 cup sugar

·       1/3 cup white wine vinegar

·       1 teaspoon chili powder

·       1 teaspoon salt

·       1 pound Roma tomatoes, seeded, diced

·       1 (15 ounce) can black-eyed peas, rinsed

·       1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed

·       1 (11 ounce) can sweet corn, drained.

·       1 red onion, diced. Can use sweet onion.

·       1/2 cup diced green bell pepper

·       1/2 cup diced red bell pepper

·       1 cup chopped cilantro (from 1 bunch)

Directions

  In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, sugar, white wine vinegar, chili powder, and salt. Add tomatoes, black-eyed peas, beans, corn, red onion, and bell peppers. Stir to combine. Stir in cilantro. Cover and chill at least 1 hour or overnight to blend flavors. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

RECIPE: AUNT CLARA'S JOHNNYCAKES

  Longtime Central Texas resident Belle Harper submitted along this month’s recipe from her great grandmother, which she says was used by her forefathers when they first arrived in Austin before the Civil War. “It makes a great breakfast with eggs and bacon on a cold winter day, just like the pioneers would have had, ” she says.

Serves: 4

Ingredients

·       1 cup milk

·       2 eggs

·       1 tablespoon honey

·       3 tablespoons vegetable oil

·       1 ½ cup cornmeal

·       1 teaspoon salt

Directions

  Beat milk, eggs, honey and oil together in a large mixing bowl. Add cornmeal and salt, and stir until moistened.

  Drop batter onto a hot greased skillet (a cast-iron skillet works best) in large spoonfuls. Cook both sides like pancakes until golden brown. Or the batter can be cooked like a cake in the skillet, then sliced into equal pieces and served at the table.

  Serve with maple syrup, molasses, fruit compote or applesauce.