Look for a good shortbread cookies recipe

Look for a good shortbread cookies recipe

June 15th, 2011 in Life Entertainment

Good morning, good readers. We are mighty glad, as always, that you came. The requests with which to begin are vinegar slaw, sugar-free granola, shortbread cookies and quinoa salad.

The first request came from Flintstone Ga., resident Nadine Carden who "would like the recipe for vinegar slaw like that made at Bone's Smokehouse on East Brainerd Road."

Yeast of the Ridge wrote: "I saw the petticoat tails cookies that a reader requested at a shop in Hamilton Place and bought a package. They were labeled 'Petticoat Tails Shortbread' and were circles with indentations to break into pie-shaped wedges. They were delicious, and so now I am asking for a shortbread recipe. Also, I believe someone else asked for a sugar-free granola a good while back, but I never saw it printed. I would love to have that."

Finally, a neighbor bought a bag of quinoa but has no idea how to make a delicious summer salad that includes veggies as well. Can you tell her how to make a quinoa salad?

Here's the kind of answer we all dream of getting. The reader's request for tomato pie as served at the Olde World Bakery, formerly in St. Elmo, brought the authentic recipe for that pie from the very owner, Don Grant.

"I developed this recipe my second year in business," he said. "I always measure my ingredients by weight to ensure the same results."

I frequented Mr. Grant's bakery, and all his baked goods were delicious. His current area of expertise is fresh pasta; if you want to know more, please contact him through this column.

Olde World Tomato Pie

75 grams Asiago cheese, grated

75 grams Romano cheese, grated

150 grams Cheddar cheese, grated

150 grams mozzarella cheese, grated

1 (10-inch) deep-dish, uncooked pie shell

Heaping teaspoon dried basil

3 to 4 ripe, medium-sized tomatoes, sliced about 1/4 inch thick

1/2 cup milk or cream

2 large eggs (usually about 50 grams each)

Dash of salt

Mix all cheeses and layer 150 grams in bottom of pie shell. Sprinkle half of basil on cheese. Place sliced tomatoes in shell to just above top. Mix milk, eggs and salt, and pour over tomatoes. Top with remaining cheese. Sprinkle remaining basil on top of cheese.

Bake 45 to 50 minutes in preheated 375 F oven. Be careful not to burn the cheese.

Jenny Thomas wrote to affirm that the product now on local supermarket shelves, Ideal Brown No Calorie Sweetener, a powdered sweetener, is made from xylitol.

The company's award-winning chef, Don "Chef Ozzie" Godleski, tests recipes using this sweetener, and Ms. Thomas promised to enlist his help on any recipes we might need.

First, as per today's requests, we'll ask for a sugar-free granola. What interests you most? We'll pass it on to Chef Ozzie, who will test what he sends us.

This week I got a rare thing: a letter, written by hand, and several pages to boot. Inside its pages were tucked some favorite recipes from a former caterer, Maryland-born Diane Haidari, whose reminiscing these days always includes food she has served to others and enjoyed herself.

She sent a passel of recipes, but today we'll print her favorites, rosemary Porterhouse steaks and a tuna casserole that includes, of all things, pan-fried macaroni shells.

Of this steak recipe, Ms. Haidari wrote that the dish is "a bit pricey, but any leftovers make a killer sandwich with the meat sliced thin and placed on toasted sourdough bread spread with remaining olive mayonnaise and several thick slices of Vidalia onions."

Rosemary Porterhouse Steaks With Olive Mayonnaise

1 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup pitted Kalamata olives, chopped

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh dill

1 clove garlic, minced

2 Porterhouse steaks, cut 1 to 11/4 inches thick (about 1 pound each)

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt or salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Snipped fresh rosemary (optional)

1 recipe Herbed Potatoes and Squash (recipe follows)

For olive mayonnaise, in bowl combine mayonnaise, olives, dill and garlic. Cover and refrigerate for up to 1 week.

Brush steaks with oil. Combine rosemary, salt and pepper; rub on steaks. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.

For charcoal grill, place steaks on rack directly over medium-hot coals. Cover and grill 9 to 11 minutes for medium rare (145 F), turning once. For a gas grill, preheat and set to medium-high. Cover and grill as above.

Sprinkle steaks with fresh rosemary if desired; cut into serving portions. Serve with olive mayonnaise and herbed potatoes and squash.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Herbed Potatoes and Squash

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 pound red and/or white tiny new potatoes, halved

2 small yellow summer squash, cut in thick diagonal slices (about 2 cups)

Snipped fresh rosemary and/or dill

In a bowl stir together oil, rosemary and salt. Add potatoes and toss.

For charcoal grill, arrange medium-hot coals around drip pan. Place grill wok, basket or foil pan directly on rack above drip pan; heat 5 minutes. Add potatoes; cover and grill 10 minutes, stirring once. Add squash; cover; grill 15 minutes more, until potatoes are tender, stirring once. Transfer to serving dish. Sprinkle with remaining fresh rosemary.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Tuna-Cheese Bake

1/4 cup salad oil

2 cups (8 ounces) uncooked macaroni shells

1/2 cup chopped onions

1/2 cup chopped green pepper

1 tablespoon flour

21/2 cups milk

1 cup chopped or shredded sharp process cheese

1 can flaked tuna, drained

Bread crumbs (optional)

Pimiento-stuffed green olives

Heat oil in skillet. Stir in macaroni shells, onion and pepper. Sprinkle with flour. Cook and stir over low heat until macaroni yellows, about 10 minutes. Stir in milk, cheese and tuna.

Turn mixture into a greased casserole and sprinkle with crumbs if desired. Bake in a preheated 400 F oven about 35 minutes, or until macaroni shells are very tender. Garnish with sliced, pimiento-stuffed green olives.

Makes 6 servings.

It's been a long time since I thought about a tuna casserole, which was a staple in the leaner years at our house. But now we know how good fish is for us, and I've been cooking with canned wild salmon; can't tell much difference between it and the tuna, to tell the truth.

Today's column offers a good bit of variety: pies to bake summer's tomatoes in, vegetables to grill outside, steak when you're feeling flush and tuna when you're feeling economical.

Please send us your favorite in each category: summer veggies, special dinner menus and economical favorites. And come back, all of you, next week.

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.