• Kitchen Adventures: Soup: Spice it up for fall

    For a foodie, the advent of fall means soup and chili season has arrived.

    Spicy tortilla soup is a good step between soup and chili. It’s spicy like chili but is a soup so it’s not as thick.

    I used less chili powder and cumin than the recipe suggests. Spices in a recipe usually can be adjusted for an individual’s taste.

    If you’ve cooked much with spicy chili peppers such jalapeno, you know there’s a risk of slight pain. Contact to the skin can cause a burning or stinging sensation.

  • Dash of Class: Fall memories and apple recipes

    Tomorrow would have been my dear mother’s birthday. As the temperatures cool and leaves turn, I think of the wonderful things Mama used to make in the fall. Her Fresh Apple Cake and Apple Crisp are some of the things for which my mom was noted.

    The Brown Bag Dutch Apple Pie is another one of my favorites of hers. The technique for making it is interesting, but it turns out to be a great apple pie.

    But if she was in a hurry, she would turn to my aunt’s Easy Apple Cobbler.

  • Kitchen Adventures: Sage advice for fall pizza

    Sometimes, you learn a little about yourself when trying a new dish. On this kitchen adventure, I learned two things.

    One, there is such a thing as too much sage. Two, I’m not a fan of goat cheese.

    Because fall is my favorite time of year, a pizza with a harvest theme sounded like a good thing to try.

    To keep costs down, I altered the recipe.

  • Dash of Class: Maria Barcenilla is 'One of Hardin County's Finest Cooks'

    This month’s “One of Hardin County’s Finest Cooks,” Maria Barcenilla, is a native of Spain who moved to the United States 17 years ago with her husband, Frank Calvana, and daughter, Natalie.

    Maria teaches Spanish at Elizabethtown High School and fellow teacher Bonnie Young nominated her. Young said Barcenilla often entertains co-workers and close friends at her home and “dining at Maria’s house is comparable to any five-star restaurant.

  • Kitchen Adventures: Apples plus snickerdoodles equals delicious

    Two items are staples in fall cooking — apples and pumpkins.

    And apples are ripe for the picking this time of year.

    After getting some fresh apples from an orchard, I was in the mood to bake something with them but wanted something a little different from the norm. A recipe for Apple Snickerdoodle Cobbler sounded perfect.

    Apples are good and snickerdoodles are good so this recipe had to be good, too.

  • Dash of Class: Three cakes for Recipe Roundup

    Here we are at the end of another month. My, how time flies.

    I have had a couple recipe requests I will share with you. One was requested by former “One of Hardin County’s Finest Cooks,” Suzanne Shircliff, which was a White Chocolate Almond Cake. I hope it resembles the one her family lost.

  • Kitchen adventures: A cook's dilemma

    Today’s adventure is something yummy that landed on the cheap side thanks to a couple sales at the grocery store. But it also fell victim to a common cooks dilemma.

    Some week’s dinner becomes the same-old-same-old. As I tried to decide what to prepare one night I thought back to some delicious stuffed peppers my sister-in-law once made. She’s one of those cooks who can throw a bunch of things together from her fridge or pantry and come up with something delicious. I usually need a recipe.

  • Kitchen Adventures: Baking with caramel for fall

    The first day of fall finally arrives Sunday. The air is cooler, the sun shines in a goldish tint and the smell of apple cider fills the air.

    With the arrival of fall, cooking with caramel and spices are a must and Caramel Stuffed Apple Cider Cookies fit the bill.

    Just reading the description of this cookie gave me the warm fuzzy feeling of sipping a cup of warm cider.

    While the cookies bake in the oven, the smell of the spices in the cider fill your home.

  • Dash of Class: A tribute to a fine cook

    Iva Lee Owsley and I became close as fellow members of Cecilia Homemakers. With her recent passing, it seems appropriate to revisit a few special words about her published recipes in June 2011 plus some of her special ones as a tribute to her memory.

    A fellow member of Cecilia Homemakers, Debbie McQueary, said about Iva Lee, “I think she is a lovely woman, inside and out, and I enjoy the stories she shares about her family.”

  • Cooking comes from the heart

    In the busy world we live in today, cooking and baking have become rushed, hectic tasks.

    We cook dinner to get it over with. Or worse yet, we don’t cook dinner at all and depend on the drive-thru or freezer for daily meals.

    More cookies now are made from refrigerated dough than from scratch. Not because we don’t know how to bake them, but because we think we do not have time.