As part of my effort to clear out and organize my utility room, I decided to also go through my Ladies Home Journal Recipe Treasure Box and throw out any recipes I no longer wanted.
What better way to do that, than to cook the meals on each card to see if I still enjoy them?
Sometimes I cook just to keep my tastebuds on their toes. Other times I do it because I don't want my tastebuds to age in such a way that old favorites no longer taste good to me.
Not only am I organizing my utility room and recipe box, I have a new way of shopping. Over the years, there have been times when I've gone to the grocery store to buy the ingredients for one menu but ended up changing the menu entirely on the spot because other foods struck my fancy in that moment. Now I check what I have on hand and then figure out the menu from there.
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One recipe I tested from my files was crisps. I love to get out my Pyrex baking dishes and coat them in butter. I use a paper towel to spread around the melted butter.
The thing I like most about making crisps, though, is deciding on the topping. Cool Whip is good, but ice cream is always better.
There's such a variety of fruits that can go into a good crisp. These three recipes will certainly not be retired from my treasure box. In fact, I can see making them a lot during the summer.
CRUNCHY FRUIT CRISP
Choices of fruit
6 cups cooking apples, peeled and sliced
1 21-ounce can of cherry pie filling
1 21-ounce can of peach pie filling with 2 tablespoons sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon stirred in
Fruit of choice
1/3 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/3 cup quick-cooking rolled oats
1/3 cup unsifted all-purpose flour
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup butter or margarine
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Butter 2-quart glass baking dish and add fruit. Combine remaining ingredients, except butter, in medium mixing bowl. Sprinkle over fruit. Melt butter, drizzle over top. Place dish on upper rack in oven.
Cooking time is 12-14 minutes.
4 cups fresh blueberries, washed
1 teaspoon lemon juice
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup self-rising flour
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup soft margarine
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place blueberries in buttered shallow baking dish. Sprinkle with lemon juice. Blend brown sugar, flour, cinnamon together and sprinkle on blueberries. Bake for 25 minutes. Serve warm.
CUMBERLAND APPLE CRISP
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons self-rising flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
8 cups Golden Delicious apples, peeled and sliced
1 cup self-rising flour
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
10 tablespoons butter
1 cup quick rolled oats
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 13- by 9-inch baking dish with nonstick spray. Combine sugar, 2 tablespoons flour and cinnamon in large bowl. Add apples. Stir to coat evenly. Pour into prepared baking dish. Combine 1 cup flour and brown sugar in medium bowl. Cut in butter with pastry blender or fork until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in oats and pecans. Sprinkle crumb mixture evenly over fruit mixture. Bake 30 to 35 minuets or until topping is golden brown.
Columnist Ervena Faulkner is a Port Royal resident and a retired educator who has always had an interest in food and nutrition.