Good morning, readers. You have challenges to meet and recipes to copy, so let's get on with it.
First, the requests: Iris Collins wrote from Hixson that she and her husband don't like store-bought tartar sauces, and they are counting on you to provide an original homemade tartar sauce.
Multiple requests came from a Nashvillian who did not record his or her name but wrote that "I have been in Nashville for 22 years now but still remember the tastes of these foods as if it were yesterday: from Town and Country, au jus, cinnamon coffee rolls and hamburger steak. Then, Fehn's fried chicken, Read House Bavarian cheese pie, Lott's roast beef, shrimp at the Shrimp Boat near Eastgate."
David Vine is a seasoned cook, as his recipes attest. Here's his version of Irish soda bread, discovered through an Athenian, bridge-playing friend, Kay Murphy.
Jennifer's Irish Brown Soda Bread
3 cups stone-ground flour
1 cup all-purpose white flour
2 to 3 teaspoons salt
1 level teaspoon baking soda
1 level teaspoon baking powder
10 fluid ounces buttermilk
3 to 4 fluid ounces water
Mix stone-ground flour, white flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Add buttermilk and water, and make a dough, kneading it until it looks right and sticks together. Don't knead it too long or it will toughen. Shake flour over the outside if it is sticky. Form into a flat, round shape. Cut a cross on the top with a knife. Bake in a preheated 375 F oven for about an hour; turn over and bake an additional 15 minutes.
Bread may be done in an hour total on a baking stone.
The next recipe you may have seen before, and you will need to dish it up accompanied by my apologies. I omitted the two cups of self-rising flour necessary to make the cake correctly; sender Jill Noll printed this recipe precisely by hand. Please use this recipe, as it is the accurate one.
A kind correspondent, Jane McClure, discovered the problem and guessed at three cups of self-rising flour, which produced a "crumbly-but-still-moist cake." She also decided that next time she would use the minimum lemon juice required for the glaze -- that is, the juice of two lemons, as the three-lemon version was pretty tart. You can trust her words: "By the way, I am 70 years old, and have dusted a lot of cake pans."
Jill-O's Plum or Apricot Cake
2 cups sugar
1 cup Wesson or Crisco oil
2 cups self-rising flour
1 cup fresh-peeled and mashed plums or 2 jars apricot baby food
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cloves
Ginger to taste
Nutmeg to taste
1 cup chopped black walnuts
12/3 cup golden raisins, plumped in boiling water, drained and thoroughly dried
Combine sugar, oil, flour, eggs, plums, vanilla and spices. Pour into greased and floured 10-inch tube pan. Place nuts and raisins atop batter, patting gently with a spoon so they are slightly beneath the batter. They will sink while baking but won't stick to the bottom
Bake in a preheated oven at 325 F for about 50 minutes. Remove from oven. Prick top of cake with knife. While still warm, pour this mixture over cake while still in pan.
11/2 cups confectioners sugar
Juice of 2 to 3 lemons
Bring confectioners sugar and lemon juice to a boil. Let cake cool a bit after pouring glaze over top while it is still in the pan. Remove cake from pan; glaze will now be on the bottom. Serve with sweetened fresh-whipped cream and top each serving with a lemon slice.
Variation: You may substitute baby food apricots, but use pecans instead of walnuts. Also, you may sprinkle a little nutmeg atop the whipped cream for color.
Here's another in the vast landscape of quiches, from Sue Mickel. I do believe it's our first Michigan quiche, from the Castle in Grand Rapids. This one is different from the norm at the bottom: whole-wheat cracker crumbs make up the crust. And also at the top: it has an added topping, a mix of mayonnaise, half-and-half and dill.
Michigan Mushroom Quiche
11/4 cups whole-wheat cracker crumbs (about 24 large crackers)
1/3 cup (1/4 stick) butter, melted
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
11/2 pounds mushrooms, sliced
4 green onions, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
2 teaspoons oregano
2 teaspoons basil
11/2 teaspoons salt
11/2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon marjoram
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1 cup half-and-half
Juice and finely grated peel of 1/2 lemon
11/2 cups mayonnaise
1/3 cup half-and-half
2 teaspoons dried dill (optional)
For crust: Combine crumbs and 1/3 cup butter in medium bowl and blend well. Pat into 9-inch pie plate. Chill while preparing filling.
For filling: Position rack in lower third of oven and heat oven to 375 F. Melt 1/4 cup butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, onion and garlic, and sauté until liquid is evaporated, 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in oregano, basil, salt, pepper, marjoram, thyme and mustard, and cook 2 minutes. Let cool 5 minutes.
Combine eggs, half-and-half, lemon juice and peel in large bowl, and beat well. Fold in mushroom mixture. Turn into prepared crust. Bake 25 minutes. Let cool slightly.
For topping: Combine mayonnaise, half-and-half and dill in a small bowl. Spoon evenly over quiche. Continue baking until top is set, 20 to 25 minutes.
Margaret Decker has a favorite version of easy potato soup. The original recipe called for milk, but she enriched hers with half-and-half. This one came from "The Best 1,001 Easy Recipes Cookbook."
Easy Potato Soup
1 (16-ounce) package frozen hash brown potatoes or O'Brien potatoes
1 cup chopped onions
1 (14-ounce) can chicken broth
1 (10-ounce) can cream of celery soup
1 (10-ounce) can cream of chicken soup
2 cups half-and-half
Salt and pepper to taste
Garnish: shredded cheese, diced cooked ham (optional)
In a large saucepan, combine potatoes, onion and 2 cups water. Bring to a boil.
Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Stir in broth, cream of celery soup, cream of chicken soup and half-and-half, and heat thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish if desired with grated cheese or cooked ham.
To Reach Us
Fare Exchange is a longtime meeting place for people who love to cook and love to eat. We welcome both your recipes and your requests. Be sure to include precise instructions for every recipe you send.
* Mailing address: Jane Henegar, 913 Mount Olive Road, Lookout Mountain, GA 30750.
* E-mail: janehenegar @gmail.com
* Fax: 423-668-5092