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Illinois Country Living

Strawberry Preserve Cupcakes

The Proof Is In The Pudding

Who: The Community Service Center of Northern Champaign County
Cost: $10, plus $3 shipping
Details: paper-backed, staple-bound
Pages of recipes: 93
Send checks to: Andy Kulczycki, 520 E. Wabash, Rantoul, IL 61866

Photo by Catrina McCulley Wagner

Strawberry Preserve Cupcakes (above)

  • 1 pkg. strawberry cake mix
  • 2 C. sour cream
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 C. water
  • 1/3 C. strawberry preserves
  • 2 muffin pans
  • 24 baking cups

Preheat oven to 350° and put cups in the muffin pans. Stir together cake mix, sour cream, eggs and water until blended. Fill muffin cups 1/2 way with batter. Spoon
1/2 tsp. strawberry preserves in the center
of each cup. Top with batter, filling to 3/4 full. Bake for 20-25 minutes. (Be careful
not to over-cook.) Cool for one minute,
then remove from pan. Ice with your
favorite frosting.


Sausage bread

  • 1 loaf of frozen bread dough, thawed
  • in the refrigerator
  • 1 (8-oz.) pkg. sausage, cooked and drained
  • 1 (8-oz.) pkg. Mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 C. Parmesan cheese
  • 1 T. oregano
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2-3 T. melted butter

Roll dough out in a triangle to about 1/4 inch thickness. Brush dough with melted butter. Layer sausage, cheeses oregano and garlic on top, spreading ingredients out to the edge. Roll dough from the longest edge, making sure the ingredients roll tightly. Place seam side down on a greased baking sheet. Bake at 350° until the dough is golden brown, about 20-25 minutes. Let cool slightly, then slice and serve with marinara sauce.


Low Country Boil

  • 8 quarts water
  • 1/3 C. crab boil seasoning
  • 12 small red new potatoes
  • 1 lb. smoked sausage, cut into
  • 4-inch pieces
  • 6 ears fresh corn, broken in half
  • 3 lbs. lg. shell-on shrimp

In a large Dutch oven, bring water and crab boil seasoning to a boil. Add potatoes and sausage. Cook for 20 minutes. Add corn and cook 10 minutes. Stir in shrimp and cook for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and drain well.


Mango Bread

  • 2 C. flour
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 C. vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1-1/4 C. sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 C. diced mango
  • 1/2 C. chopped pecans or walnuts

Sift dry ingredients into a mixing bowl. Make a well and add eggs, mango and nuts. Mix until well blended. Pour into a greased and floured 9x5x3-inch loaf pan and let stand 20 minutes. Bake at 350° for about 1 hour, or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean.


Italian Marinated Vegetables

Encore Recipes

Who: Illinois Symphony Orchestra Guild
Cost: $20, plus $5 shipping
Details: hard-backed, comb-bound
Pages of recipes: 181
Send checks to: Illinois Symphony Orchestra Guild,
Attention: Elaine Cousins, 1 Alder Court, Bloomington, IL 61704

Photo by Catrina McCulley Wagner

Pam’s Killer Spinach Dip

  • 2 pkg. frozen chopped spinach, cooked
  • and drained, reserving liquid
  • 4 T. butter or margarine
  • 2 T. flour
  • 1/2 C. evaporated milk
  • 5-6 green onions, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. celery salt
  • 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 8-oz. hot pepper cheese, grated

Heat butter, flour, evaporated milk, half of reserved spinach liquid, and green onions together in a saucepan. Stir until smooth. Add pepper, garlic powder, celery salt, Worcestershire sauce, and hot pepper cheese and stir until cheese melts. Add spinach and stir. Serve warm with Fritos or crackers of your choice.



Turkey Lasagna

  • Vegatable oil spray
  • 1/2 C. chopped onion
  • 8-oz fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb. freshly ground turkey, skin removed before grinding
  • 3 C. no-salt added tomato sauce
  • 2 tsp. basil

Preheat oven to 375°. Lightly spray a 9x13-inch baking dish with vegetable oil. In a nonstick skillet, over medium-high heat, combine onion, mushrooms, garlic and ground turkey. Sauté until turkey is no longer pink. Cover pan and continue to cook until mushrooms have released juices; then uncover and evaporate juices over high heat. Add tomato sauce, basil, oregano and pepper. Reduce heat. In a bowl, stir spinach, cottage cheese and nutmeg together well. Set aside. Cook noodles according to package direction, omitting salt. Lay 1/3 of the noodles on the bottom of the dish and add 1/2 of the spinach mixture, 1/3 tomato sauce and 1/3 cheese. Repeat layers once more. Finish with one layer of noodles, 1/3 layer of sauce and remaining cheese. Cover with aluminum foil and bake 35-40 minutes.


Italian Marinated Vegetables (above)

  • 1 sm. head caulifl ower, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 3 carrots, diagonally sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, diagonally sliced
  • 1/2 green pepper, cut into 3/4 inch pieces
  • 1/2 red pepper, cut into 3/4 inch pieces
  • 1 can pitted large black olives, drained
  • 1/4 C. green olives, drained

Place caulifl ower, carrots, celery, green and red peppers, black olives, green olives and baby corn in a large bowl; set aside. Combine vinegar, olive oil, water, sugar, salt, dried oregano, and dried parsley fl akes in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Immediately pour over vegetables. Pour vegetables into a gallon zip bag and refrigerate. Turn several times to coat. Serve vegetables, drained, when chilled or the next day.


Flourless Chocolate Cake

  • 6 T. butter, plus a little more for the baking pan
  • 1-1/2 C. semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 6 lg. egg yolks
  • 6 lg. egg whites
  • 1/2 C. granulated sugar
  • Powdered sugar to dust on top of cake

Preheat oven to 275°. Butter a 9-inch springform pan with a little butter. Place butter and chocolate in a large microwavable bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds, stir and repeat until melted. Cool slightly. Whisk the egg yolks into the chocolate/ butter mixture. In another bowl, beat the egg whites to soft peaks. Gradually add granulated sugar. Beat egg whites until they are stiff and glossy. Whisk 1/2 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture. Gently fold the chocolate mixture into the remaining egg whites. Pour into the buttered baking pan and bake on the center rack of the oven until cake begins to pull away from the sides of the pan and is just set in the center, about 45-50 minutes. For a lighter and drier cake that is equally delicious, bake a few minutes longer. Cool completely on a wire rack. Serve with a dusting of powdered sugar and raspberries (optional).



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