Saturday, November 28, 2009

Glenda's Cranberry Sauce with Raspberry Vinegar

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Here's a yummy cranberry relish recipe with a hint of raspberry flavoring - a perfect accompaniment to your holiday turkey and bursting with flavor. It will become a holiday classic recipe as it is so good. It's from my buddy Glenda Stephens, pictured here with former co-worker Gail Maigue.

1-1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup raspberry vinegar
1/4 cup water
1, 12-oz package fresh cranberries
1 cinnamon stick
1 T orange zest

Combine the sugar, vinegar and water in a saucepan over medium high heat. Bring to a boil. Mix in the cranberries, cinnamon stick and orange zest. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 min. until the berries pop open. Cool. Discard cinnamon stick. Chill in refrigerator. Can be made one week in advance.

Chocolate Mousse Pie

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This is an old recipe that I found in my mom's recipe box. I made it for our Sunday family dinner when Stephen, Tim, Michelle and grandson, Sean, came to visit. It is very easy to make and rich tasting. You will love it!

4 squares (4 oz.) unsweetened baking chocolate
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
2 tsp vanilla
2 cups (1 pint) cold whipping cream
9-inch baked pastry shell, graham cracker crust or Oreo crust

In a 2-quart glass bowl, place chocolate squares, sweetened condensed milk and vanilla. Microwave on high for 2-4 min, stirring after each minute, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Let cool to room temperature about 1.5 hours. In a separate bowl, beat the whipping cream until stiff. Gradually fold in the chocolate mixture. Pour into the baked shell. Refrigerate 4 hours or more until set. Garnish with whipped cream and chocolate syrup (if desired). Refrigerate leftovers.

Oreo Crust
1-1/2 cups finely crushed Oreo cookie crumbs (approximately 20-22 Oreos)
3 tablespoons melted butter

Mix crumbs and butter in a bowl with a spoon. Press the crust into into a pie plate or springform pan.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Cambodian Spinach Leaf Appetizer

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We went to a cute Cambodian restaurant in the Mission District in San Francisco called Angkor Borei with Patti and Cliff. The restaurant received high ratings on and was mentioned in the SF Chronicle's article "Bargain Bites". We had the most wonderful spinach leaf appetizer, a dish bursting with an array of fresh flavors - sweet, sour, pungent and salty. We ate every bit of it. It is one of the most popular menu items and I can see why. I located this recipe on internet which closely resembles the dish. You can use your favorite dipping sauce to accompany this dish. The one below is a light and sweet Vietnamese dipping sauce used with spring rolls.

-Fresh spinach leaves (medium to large size)
-Coconut, shredded and toasted under broiler for a few minutes
-Roasted peanuts, salted or unsalted
-Fresh ginger, peeled and cut into tiny cubes
-Red onion, finely diced
-Serrano chili, seeds removed, finely diced
-Lime, diced small with rind removed
-Tiny dried shrimp (I substituted with fresh cooked baby shrimp)

Dipping sauce:
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup warm water
2T fish sauce
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup lime juice
1-2 tsp garlic chili sauce

Dissolve the sugar in the warm water. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Adjust seasoning to your liking. This sauce is light, full of lime and mild. If you want a hotter sauce, increase the garlic chili sauce. An alternative dipping sauce is Mae Ploy Sweet Chili Sauce which you can buy at Ranch 99 Market for $2.99 for a large 32 oz. bottle. It's thick, sweet and hot in flavor.

To serve, place the spinach leaves on a large tray along with the individual bowls containing the filling ingredients. Each guest places an assortment of the ingredients on an individual spinach leaf, then tops it with a spoonful of the sauce. It's so flavorful!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Hormel Chili-Cheese Dip

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Here's a recipe that a former co-worker gave me years ago. It's a hot dip that is delicious with tortilla chips and crowd-pleasing. You just layer everything in a pie pan,then microwave it ...very easy. The perfect thing to eat while watching Sunday afternoon football. Here's Tim and baby Sean, enjoying a 49ers game.

1, 8-oz pkg Philadelphia cream cheese
1 pkg Lawry's taco seasoning (to taste)
1 can Hormel chili WITHOUT beans
1+ cup Cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese, shredded

In a glass pie pan, layer the cream cheese, sprinkle the taco seasoning, Hormel chili and cheese. Microwave for 4-5 min. Serve with tortilla chips.