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March 18, 2012

Lemon Butter Wafers

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups sifted flour
2 tablespoons very finely minced lemon zest (see notes)
1/3 cup ground almonds (see notes)

In the large bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter until smooth and add the sugar, beating until creamy. Beat in the eggs, scraping down the sides of the bowl. Add the flour, beating just until combined. Add the lemon zest and almonds, stirring until well incorporated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator until well chilled, at least 3 hours.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a non-stick cookie sheet. Using a 1/2 tablespoon measure, spoon out level 1/2 tablespoons of chilled cookie dough onto the cooking sheet, placing them 3 inches apart. Bake for about 10 minutes or until the cookies have just flattened and are lightly browned around the edges. Cool the cookies on racks. Stir in a covered tin.

Makes 64 cookies

Note: It is best to grind the almonds an mince the lemon zest in a small electric grinder such as a clean coffee grinder. The result is superior to that obtained with an ordinary food processor.

Variation: Spread 1 tablespoon best quality seedless raspberry jam on the bottom of one cookie, then place the bottom of another cookie on top. This makes a delicious lemon-raspberry cookie sandwich. Makes 32.

Canterbury Jumbles

1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
2 cups dark brown sugar, firmly packed
2 large eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
1 cup coarsely chopped macadamia nuts
1 1/2 cups raisins
3 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, beat the shortening, butter and brown sugar together until smooth. Beat in the eggs, then stir in the buttermilk and vanilla. Blend the flour, baking soda and salt together in a small bowl; stir the flour mixture into the butter mixture until incorporated. Stir in the coconut, nuts, raisins and chocolate chips. Drop by level half-tablespoons onto greased cookie sheets. Bake for 7-10 minutes, until the cookies are puffed and slightly brown. Cool on a rack. The cookies keep well in an airtight tin.

Makes 11 dozen

Almond Poppy Seed Muffins

4 large eggs
2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups (13 ounce can) evaporated milk
1/4 cup milk
2 cups vegetable oil
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 cups flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 cup poppy seeds

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line 30 muffin cups with paper liners. In a large mixing bowl, beat together the eggs, sugar, evaporated milk, milk, and vegetable oil. Sift together the baking powder, salt and flour. Gradually add the flour mixture to the egg mixture, beating until well combined. Add the extracts and poppy seeds, stirring only until well combined. Using a 1/3-cup measure, pour the batter into the muffin cups. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Makes 30 muffins

Monster Cinnamon Rolls

DOUGH:

3/4 cups (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 cup milk
3/4 cup plus 1 teaspoon sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
3 (1/4 ounce) envelopes active dry yeast ( 7 1/2 teaspoons)
1/2 cup warm water
5 large eggs
8 1/2 to 9 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

FILLING:
5 cups firmly packed brown sugar
1 1/4 cups (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
3 tablespoons ground cinnamon

FROSTING:
1/2 pound cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup whipping cream, approximately
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 to 4 cups powdered (confectioners’) sugar, sifted

For the DOUGH, heat the butter with the milk, 3/4 cup of the sugar, and the salt in a small saucepan until the butter is melted. Set aside to cool. In a large mixing bowl, sprinkle the yeast over the warm water, add the remaining teaspoon sugar, stir, and set aside for 10 minutes, until the mixture is bubbly. Add the lukewarm milk mixture and the eggs and beat until well combined. Add the flour a cup at a time, stirring and using enough flour to form a stiff dough. Turn out on a floured board and knead until smooth and satiny, approximately 10 minutes. (Or place in the bowl of an electric mixer and knead with a dough hook until the dough cleans the sides of the bowl, approximately 5 minutes.) Place the dough in a very large buttered bowl, turn to butter the top, and allow to rise, covered loosely with a kitchen towel, in a warm place until doubled in bulk, approximately 1 hour. Punch the dough down and roll out to a large rectangle, 24 inches by 36 inches.

Butter two 9x13 inch glass baking dishes. For the FILLING, beat together the brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon until well combined. Spread evenly over the surface of the dough. Roll up lengthwise and cut at 2-inch intervals to make 12 rolls. Place 6 rolls in each buttered dish. Cover loosely with a kitchen towel and allow to rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. (Refrigerate overnight after covering with kitchen towel if you want to bake them the next morning. They will rise in the fridge).

Preheat the oven to 350° F. Bake the rolls for about 20 to 30 minutes (40 if they go into the oven from the fridge) or until puffed and browned. Cool to room temperature on racks.

For the FROSTING, beat the cream cheese, cream, and vanilla until well combined. Add the sugar and beat until smooth and soft, not stiff. Frost the rolls and serve immediately.

Makes 12 large rolls.

March 9, 2012

World’s Best Honey Cornbread

2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
4 eggs
1/2 cup honey
1 1/3 cups milk
2 1/3 cups flour
1 1/2 Tablespoon baking powder
1/2 cup corn meal
1 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cream sugar and butter. Add in eggs, honey and milk and mix well.

Mix together flour, baking powder, corn meal and salt. Mix dry ingredients with wet ingredients carefully. Do not overmix. Batter will be lumpy.

Pour batter in greased 11×14-inch baking pan. Bake for 35 minutes or until golden brown.

March 1, 2012

Tuna Cakes

* 2 cans (5 oz. each) light tuna in water, drained, flaked
* 1 pkg. (6 oz.) STOVE TOP Stuffing Mix for Chicken
* 1 cup KRAFT Shredded Mild Cheddar Cheese
* 3/4 cup water
* 1 carrot, shredded
* 1/3 cup KRAFT Real Mayo Mayonnaise
* 2 Tbsp. CLAUSSEN Sweet Pickle Relish

# MIX all ingredients. Refrigerate 10 min.
# HEAT large nonstick skillet sprayed with cooking spray on medium heat. Use ice cream scoop to add 1/3-cup portions of tuna mixture, in batches, to skillet.
# FLATTEN into patties with back of spatula. Cook 6 min. or until golden brown on both sides, carefully turning patties after 3 min.