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Southern Style Turkey Gravy

Make Lots!

Ingredients

liver and giblets removed from turkey prior to cooking

2 - 3 hard boiled eggs

strained broth from turkey or use 1 - 2 cans Swanson's Chicken Broth

mixture of flour and water for thickening

salt and pepper to taste

Boil liver an giblets until done and set aside to cool. Mix flour and water together and set aside. In clean pan bring broth and seasoning to a boil. Slowly add flour/water mixture to pan, stirring the whole time to prevent lumps. Cook over low heat, continuing to stir frequently until mixture thickens to desired consistency. Add chopped liver and giblet pieces and sliced hard boiled eggs. Serve warm. Hint: my secret for making gravy without lumps is to mix the flour, water, and seasonings in a glass jar with a lid. Shake well until well mixed and then add to the broth mixture slowly. Works every time.

Southern Style Dressing

This recipe is served as a side dish and not stuffed inside the bird. It will feed about 6.

Ingredients

1 prepared batch of packaged cornbread mix

3 raw eggs

chopped onions - 1/2 to 3/4 cup

salt and pepper to taste

poultry seasoning to taste

strained broth from turkey or use 1 - 2 cans Swanson's chicken broth

Dressing is made by taste as much as anything. Start out by crumbling the cornbread in a large bowl. Then add raw eggs, onions, salt and pepper, poultry seasoning, and enough of the broth to make everything damp but not soggy. Mix well with a large spoon. Taste mixture and add seasoning as desired. You should include enough broth to hold everything together without making it runny. Some people like to add finely chopped celery also. Place mixture in a cake pan or any other baking dish with sides. You can make it as deep as you like. The deeper you make it, the less crisp it will be. Bake at 425 degrees until brown on top and done in the middle. Serve as a side dish with gravy. Hint: you can mix the dressing ahead of time (even the night before) and store it, uncooked and covered, in the refrigerator until ready to bake.

Gagaw's Pecan Raisin Cake

This recipe is around 150 years old, back when people didn't worry about things like fat content. They just wanted things to taste good.

Ingredients

6 eggs

2 cups sugar

1 cup shortening

4 cups flour

1 quart chopped pecans

1/2 to 1 box raisins

1 cup sweet pickle juice

1-1/2 teaspoons nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon salt

Combine eggs, sugar, shortening and mix well. Add flour, nutmeg, salt, and juice and mix well. Mixture will be thick. Stir in raisins and pecans. Bake at 350 degrees about 1 hour in a well greased tube pan lined on the bottom with brown cooking paper. The brown paper keeps it from cooking too fast and becoming dry so be sure to use a tube pan that allows you to line it. May take longer to cook so be sure to test the middle with a toothpick before removing from oven.

Divinity

Don't try to make Divinity if it is raining or excessively humid. It won't set.

Ingredients

2-1/2 cups sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup white syrup (found in the syrup aisle)

3/4 cup water

1 egg white

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 - 1 cup chopped pecans

Combine sugar, syrup, water, and salt in a sauce pan. A heavy pan works best. Boil until a small amount of the syrup forms a firm ball when dropped in cold water. Or use a candy thermometer to test when the temperature reaches 255 degrees. It takes a good while to reach this stage. Set aside to cool for about 5 minutes and beat egg white (use mixer) until stiff. Add cooked mixture slowly into egg mixture, beating constantly. The hardest part of making divinity is deciding when it is ready. When the mixture looses it's sheen it is ready. At this point quickly add the vanilla and pecans. You can pour all the mixture into a shallow pan to harden, or drop spoon size portions onto waxed paper to form individual pieces. Eat a piece to reward yourself for successfully making a batch.

Chicken Pie

I don't know if this pie is unique to my family or if every other house in Georgia has it every other Sunday since my family left Georgia when I was 6. All I know if that I have never had anyone else ever make a chicken pie the way my mother taught me to make one. These are so good and worth all the time they take. The good thing is you can make it ahead of time and cook it at the last minute. It doesn't freeze well though so don't make it any sooner than the night before you want to serve it.

Ingredients

2 to 2-1/2 pound chcken fryer, boiled and deboned

broth from the cooked chicken

4 slicked hard-boiled eggs

2 large potatoes

two piece pie crust (you can make your own, but the refrigerated kind work just fine too)

milk

salt and pepper

Boil the chicken in a deep pan, making sure it is completly covered in water. Cooking time will vary depending on size of bird. If unsure of cooking time, ask for advice from grocery butcher. It is important that the bird be done without being tough. When chicken is cool enough to handle remove from broth and let it cool some more. DON'T DISCARD THE BROTH.

Strain the broth to remove any grissle or other impurities and return it the stove in a clean pan bringing back to a low boil. It still needs to be a large pan. (If you using refrigerated pie crust dough make sure at this point that it is sitting out to become at room temperature so you can work with it. If you are making dough from scratch you will need to make it at this point.)

Peel and slice the potatoes into chunks and add them to the broth and let them cook about 15 minutes. Take half the pie crust, rolled to pie crust thickness, and cut quarter inch strips to create dumplings. Drop the dumplings into the broth and continue cooking another 10 minutes. The dumplins need to cook about 10 minutes, but use your judgement on the potatoes. You don't want them to get mushy and their whole cooking time will depend on the size you cut them.

Meanwhile, debone the chicken, cutting it into bitesize pieces. Layer the chicken and the sliced hard-boiled eggs in the bottom of a deep, 3 quart casserole dish.

When the potatoes and dumplins are done, carefully add them, along with plenty of broth, to the casserole using a soup ladle. Don't fill the dish all the way to the top with broth because you want to be able to add some milk to top it off. At least half a cup, but 3/4 cup is even better. Add salt and pepper to taste.

The last step is to top with the top pie crust. cut a slit or two to allow for steam and seal the edges. I like to hit mine with a mist of Pam to add a shine to the crust.

Bake 30 - 40 minutes at 350 degrees. It might bubble over so you might want to put something on the bottom shelf to catch spills.

Nancy's All Occasion Spectacular Cookies

I make these cookies up ahead of time and freeze them without icing them. Then it is quick process to ice and serve at a moment's notice. After many years I highly recommend that you use the butter and shortening as noted below. All butter makes them too hard and all shortening doesn't taste as good.

Ingredients

1/2 cup shortening (Like Crisco) and 1/4 cup real butter (softened)

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

2-1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

Add baking powder and salt to flour and set aside. Mix butter, shortening, sugar, eggs, and vanilla, using an electric mixer. Mix well. Add flour mixture and continue mixing until all ingredients are well mixed. Chill dough at least 1 hour. Roll out 1/8 inch thick on floured surface and cut into desired shapes. Place about 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees until delicately golden brown - about 6 to 8 minutes. Just prior to serving, ice with recipe below or other of your choice. To serve without icing you can sprinkle sugar on top before baking. You can also add nuts to the dough before baking.

Cookie Icing

This recipe makes enough to ice one batch of cookies

Ingredients

2 cups confectioners' sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla or other flavoring

a few tablespoons warm mile

Food coloring as desired.

Combine sugar, salt, and flavoring. Add drops of food coloring if desired. Slowly add warm milk until spreading consistency is reached.

Southern Cream Cookies

These cookies feature Sour Cream and are usually crispy, but may be made thick and chewy as well. This recipe makes a big batch and they keep well in the freezer.

Ingredients

1 cup shortening

2 cups sugar

2 beaten eggs

1 teaspoon vailla

1 cup sour cream

5 cups flour

3 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Cream shortening and sugar together using mixer. Add eggs, vanilla, and sour cream and mix well. Mix baking powder, salt and soda in with the flour and add to creamed mixture. Drop 1 inch balls on greased cookie sheet. Lightly grease the bottom of a flat glass, dip in sugar for each cookie and press cookies flat. Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes. Edges and bottoms should be a light brown when done.

Salmon Ball

This recipe is good for a party.

Ingredients

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

1 small can salmon

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 teaspoons dried, powdered, onion

1 teaspoon horse radish

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke (found in seasoning aisle)

1/3 finely chopped cup pecans

1 box Ritz crackers for serving

parsley for decoration

Drain salmon. Remove skin and bones if necessary. Mix all ingredients, form into a ball and refrigerate. When firm, roll in parsley. Serve with Ritz crackers.

Hot Chocolate Mix

This is a great recipe for gift giving. Once it is made you can big small amounts to use as stand-alone gifts, combined with mugs, or tucked in a basket with other goodies. This recipe got me through a couple of lean holidays.

Ingredients

1 8 ounce box of powered milk

1 16 ounce jar of Coffee Mate

1 two pound jar Nestles Quick Chocolate Mix

1 two pound box powdered sugar

1 teaspoon salt

Combine ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. To make chocolate add 1/8 to 1/4 cup mix to boiling water. Stir and top with marshmallows if desired.

Fork Cookies

This is the first thing that I ever learned to cook. My sister and I called them "Fork" cookies because you mash the tops with a fork as the final step. I think we were 7 or 8 when we started cooking. It never occurred to me to include them on this page until my oldest daughter insisted they must be included, so here they are. You absolutely must use lard to make these. If you use anything they will be really blah. They freeze well to have on hand for company.

Ingredients

1 cup lard

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

2-1/2 cups flous

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1-1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup chopped nuts or 1/2 cups raisins if desired.

In a mixer, mix lard, sugar, eggs and vanilla until creamy. Add soda, salt and cinnamon to flour and slowly add to creamy mixture until well blended. If adding nuts or raisins, stir them into the mix. Drop by teaspoon onto greased cookie sheet, about 2 inches apart. Gently press each cookie with a fork dipped in flour. Bake at 350 dgreees 10-12 minutes until lightly brown on bottom and edges.

Apple Cider

I needed a hot drink for a Christmas party and found this one in my 1950's Betty Crocker cook book. It is yummy!

8 cups apple cider or apple juice

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

6 inches stick cinnamon

1 teaspoon whole allspice

1 teaspoon whole cloves

1 teaspoon shredded orange peel

thin orange wedges (optional)

spice bag (6 inch square of 100% cotton cheesecloth)

In a large saucepan combine cidar and sugar. Put cinnamon, allspice, cloves, and orange peel in spice bag and fasten tightly with clean string. Add spice bag to cider mixture. Bring to boil and reduce heat. Simmer covered for 10 minutes. Before serving remove spice bag and discard. Serve cider in mugs. Garnish with orange slice.

Makes 8 cups