Chattanooga cooks share illuminating advice on kitchen must-haves and a Trisha Yearwood snack recipe

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Good morning, good friends. Today, in the long wake after the Masters in Augusta, a nameless correspondent had a lament. He wrote, "I couldn't wait to eat egg salad sandwiches all day long, and they ran out of egg salad and pimiento cheese. Can anyone help me make Masters-style pimiento cheese and egg salad at home?"

We are still seeking entries in T.H.M.'s request for not just recipes, but menus, for easy meals. Sheet pan meals that you have tried and approved certainly qualify for this.


Tim Threadgill began the discussion of best and worst kitchen innovations, and we hope you will add yours. You will note his wit as well as his expertise.

The best kitchen technology, as per Mr. Threadgill, is "In order of priority: 1) Lighting 2) Lighting and 3) Lighting."

And fourth. "Did I mention lighting?

"Seriously, most older kitchens concentrate the light in the middle of the floor where it's not needed. If nothing else, invest in a few battery-powered light strips and put them under the cabinets, or get a kitchen cart to prep under the main light, or both.

"5) A cushiony floor mat or two covered in seamless, easy-to-clean substance.

"6) A quality chef's knife and a decent sharpener. You can get both, if you shop deals, for far less than you think.

"7) Anything ergonomic that makes time in the kitchen safer and less strenuous. Cabinets with wire pullouts to get to all the things stored in there or drawers instead of boxes if doing a remodel. Big plus for built-in garbage pull-out. Those trash cans eat up a lot of room.

"8) Several flexible cutting boards.

"9) A big, deep sink. We didn't think we needed it until we got one, then realized we needed it our entire lives.

"10) If you eat a lot of rice, a high-quality rice cooker. It does more than cook rice, and good ones hold it at temperature for hours without burning or drying it out, and they have settings for more than just white rice.

"11) High-quality vent hood that vents out of the kitchen. It will remove heat and dangerous gases that build up, especially if you cook with gas."

You wanted to know the worst? That list is shorter, and you will find it at the end of this column.


Joe Jumper's blog, if you look for "recipes I dig" in, has treasures that go way back.

He wrote, "This recipe is featured in the April 2010 issue of Country Living. It is part of the article on Trisha Yearwood's family recipes.

"I decided I would try making Mama's Sweet and Saltines, and boy were they good. This recipe is easy and would be great for any gathering."

Mama's Sweet and Saltines

40 saltine crackers

2 sticks unsalted butter

1 cup light brown sugar

8 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips

Heat oven to 425 degrees. Line a large, rimmed cookie sheet with aluminum foil and saltine crackers.

In a medium saucepan, melt butter and brown sugar together and bring to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, and pour over crackers, covering them evenly. Put cookie sheet into oven, and watch closely. Bake for about 5 minutes or until just bubbly.

Remove from oven, and pour chocolate chips over crackers. When chips begin to melt, spread them over crackers with a knife. Transfer pan to freezer for about 20 minutes, or until completely cooled. The chocolate-covered crackers will form a solid sheet. Break into pieces and store in airtight container.


Joy Yates' grandmother made Sally Lunn bread a half-century ago, and the recipe that she sent you today is "from the 1968 church cookbook 'Favorite Recipes of First United Methodist Church, Bristol, Tennessee.' I would assume you could use the same recipe to make rolls or the loaves of bread." If you have made rolls from Sally Lunn dough and have some specific instructions to share with us, please do.

Sally Lunn Bread

1/3 cup butter

1/3 cup lard

1 1/4 cups milk, divided

4 cups flour

3 eggs

1 yeast cake dissolved in 1/3 cup water

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon salt

Melt butter and lard in a little of the warm milk. Make a stiff batter with the rest of the ingredients. Let rise until double in size, then beat again.

Put in well-greased pans, and let rise for 2 hours. Bake for 1 hour, watching carefully from 40 minutes on, in a 350-degree oven.


One of you has been eagerly awaiting a "meaning of margarine" response to his question, and it came from Debbie Pataky, "using the old saying, 'I don't know, but I've been told.'"

Herewith, that saying: "You can put a stick of margarine out in the woods, go back a year later and it will still be there. Even the wild animals won't eat it."

In the Patakys' Lookout Mountain kitchen, "I am a cook who only uses real butter. And my name is not Paula Deen.

"Butta' is bettah."

Now, to the rest of you. Do you agree or disagree?


And finally, as promised, here are Tim Threadgill's worst gadgets for your kitchen. "Worst is a matter of circumstance and storage. Impulse is not your friend, and we all fall prey to it. That said:

"1) Stove pot filler. Yes, it is nice the few times we fill a big pot with water, not to lug the pot to the stove, but that pot still needs to be emptied. It also makes cleaning the backsplash harder, and it's awkward if you accidentally turn it on (which has happened despite having two valves).

"2) Most trends and things sold in infomercials. Please see the comment on impulse."


Last week's Weeknight Lemon Chicken Skillet Dinner looked intriguing to the occupants and visitors in the Odell Waddell home. Mr. Waddell, who has sent many good requests through the years, this week sent a photo of the dish, completed and ready for the table. The best part of this story, however, was the return of daughter Katherine to prepare the meal for her parents. Now there's an idea for you children-who-are-no-longer-children to copy.


- Masters egg salad and pimiento cheese

- Easy meals and menus


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, and know we cannot test the recipes printed here.

Mailing address: Jane Henegar, 913 Mount Olive Road, Lookout Mountain, GA 30750