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YOU’VA FRIEND IN THE KITCHEN: You'vah's back with answers to readers' questions


Editor’s note: This column first appeared in the Quill on Jan. 9, 2018.

My hiatus was a blessed time spent with family and friends; I hope yours was also.

With the number my family has grown to, it is almost impossible for us to be together in one place at one time: Each grandchild has parents and two sets of grandparents to spend time with plus they cannot always get time off from work at the same time. So, as usual, I wind up with several separate celebrations by the time I have been with all of them.

The flu has not been kind to my family (as with many, many families) during the holidays. Two of my granddaughters have been unable to get everyone on their feet at the same time but we will have our "get-together" when they recover.

My daughter Sally was unable to be with us but she has scheduled a three-day weekend to spend with me celebrating Christmas as well as my birthday. I am really looking forward to that. (I still have my "big" 2-foot Christmas tree up so we can celebrate in style.)

I hope 2018 will be your best year ever: Wishing you blessings!

I will start this year off by answering two questions and apologize for the delay.

1. How do you reduce the heat of food that is too spicy hot?

Answer: Depending on the recipe, you can add butter, cream, sour cream or oil or a sweetener such as sugar, honey or maple syrup. For chili a small amount of sugar will help but sour cream does even better. For salsa, etc. again a small amount of sugar will help but olive oil does the best job. The very best bet is to taste-test as you add the spice. Per the old saying: Prevention is the best medicine!

2. What is the difference in "Memphis" and "St. Louis" spareribs?

Answer: A full rack of spare ribs (usually referred to as "Memphis ribs") contain the brisket bone and surrounding breast meat, and weighs about 3.5 to 4 pounds. When the brisket bone and breast meat are trimmed off, producing a narrower, rectangular rack, then you have "St. Louis ribs." These are usually what you find in meat markets and are much preferred for grilling.

Hope this information helps.

I am going to start this new year's recipes off with some of Eleanor Marquardt's contributions. If you have a favorite meat you will surely find a recipe for it in this collection. Thanks, Eleanor, happy New Year.

. . .


From Eleanor Marquardt

1 3-ounce package ramen noodles

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 cup finely diced onion

1/4 cup finely diced bell pepper

2 16-ounce cans pink salmon, drained and flaked

2 eggs, lightly beaten

2 tablespoons oil

Place noodles, seasoning packet & flour in food processor; process until noodles are finely chopped; set aside.

In a large bowl combine veggies, salmon and half of noodle mixture; add eggs and stir to mix well. Place remainder of noodles on a plate. Form salmon mixture into 8 patties; press each side of patty in noodles. Heat oil in large skillet over high heat; add patties and cook 3 to 5 minutes per side or until golden brown. Serve with a side of tartar sauce, sweet and sour sauce or spicy mustard.

. . .


From Eleanor Marquardt

1 1/2 pounds boneless pork, cubed

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

4 cups water

1 tablespoon chicken bouillon granules

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 bay leaf

10 or 12 small red potatoes (about 2 pounds)

4 medium tart apples, peeled and sliced into wedges

2 tablespoons cornstarch

2 tablespoons cold water

In large Dutch oven, brown pork cubes in oil; add next 5 ingredients. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to simmer; cover and simmer 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until pork is almost tender. Add potatoes and simmer 15 minutes. Add apples; cover and cook 10-12 minutes or until apples are tender crisp. Stir cornstarch into cold water until smooth. Stir mixture into pork; bring to boil, cooking and stirring for 2 minutes or until thickened. Remove bay leaf and discard.

. . .


From Eleanor Marquardt

1 pound lean ground beef

1/2 cup chopped bell pepper

1/2 cup onion, chopped medium

1/3 cup barbecue sauce

1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese

1 cup Bisquick

1 cup milk

2 eggs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees; spray 9-inch deep-dish pie plate.

In skillet, over medium heat, cook beef, pepper and onion 8-10 minutes , stirring and cooking until beef is browned. Stir in barbecue sauce and spread in prepared plate. Sprinkle half the cheese over mixture. In medium bowl thoroughly combine Bisquick with milk and eggs; pour evenly over beef mixture. Bake 25 minutes; sprinkle remaining cheese over pie. Bake 5 minutes longer or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Serve with additional (heated) barbecue sauce if desired.

. . .

This cake sounds delicious and requires no icing.


From Eleanor Marquardt

1 20-ounce can crushed pineapple

1 15-ounce can sliced peaches in light syrup, undrained

1 15-ounce package yellow cake mix

1/2 cup butter, cut in thin slices

1 cup brown sugar, packed (ALWAYS)

1/2 cup flaked coconut

1/2 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees; spray 13x9-inch cake pan.

Mix pineapple and peaches and spread in prepared pan. Sprinkle cake mix evenly over fruit; top with butter in a single layer, covering cake mix as near as possible. Combine remaining ingredients and sprinkle evenly over top. Bake 40-45 minutes. Cool at least 15 minutes before serving.

If you’d like to share a good recipe with You’vah, you can write her at 320 S. Harlin, West Plains, MO 65775 or via email at yschafer@yahoo.com. Although she does not take recipes over the phone, she invites your suggestions, questions and conversations at 417-293-5333.