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Patty Craig: A Slice of Time

Even though our weather doesn’t yet feel like fall, leaves are beginning to turn and fall decorations are coming out. We’re also in apple and pumpkin harvest time. So, fall foods are on my mind, and as the weather turns cooler, I’ll be using the following recipes.     


Kathy’s Toffee Apple Dip

8 oz. cream cheese, softened

¾ c. packed brown sugar

½ c. sugar

Splash of vanilla

8 oz. Bits-O-Brickle (May substitute crushed Heath bar.)

Directions:  Mix cream cheese, sugars and vanilla. Stir in Bits-O-Brickle. Serve with sliced apples.


Britney’s Taco Dip

1 lb. ground beef

1 packet taco seasoning

8 oz. cream cheese

1 can refried beans

1 jar chunky salsa

1 bag shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook and drain ground beef. Mix in taco seasoning. Soften cream cheese. Mix cream cheese and refried beans. Spoon the cream cheese and bean mixture into an 11x7-inch casserole dish. Next spoon the taco meat into the dish. Pour the salsa on top of the meat. Sprinkle shredded cheddar cheese on top. Bake at 350° for 20-30 minutes or until cheese is melted. Serve with tortilla chips or taco shells.


Marilyn’s Beef Stew

2 to 3 lbs. beef stew meat

3-5 diced potatoes

3-5 carrots, cut into bite-size pieces

1 onion, chopped

1 envelope onion soup mix

2 cans cream of celery soup

1 can cream of mushroom soup

¼ tsp. black pepper

¾ c. water

Directions:  Grease the bottom of the Dutch oven or other pan for baking (May use an aluminum pan on a cookie sheet.). Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Layer beef in the bottom of the pan, and add potatoes, carrots and onion on top. Sprinkle onion soup mix over vegetables. In a mixing bowl, stir together the soups, black pepper and water. Pour the soup mixture over the vegetables. Cover the pan. Bake at 275° for 5 hours, stirring mid-way through baking. Yield: 6 servings.


Mexican Corn Bread

2 eggs

½ c. vegetable oil

8 oz. sour cream

1 ½ c. corn meal mix

1 can cream-style corn (14-15 oz.)

½ c. chopped onion

¼ c. chopped green peppers

¼ c. chopped hot peppers or to taste (May drain and chop canned hot banana peppers.)

1 c. shredded cheddar or sharp cheddar cheese

Directions:  Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease 9x13-inch pan. Mix eggs, vegetable oil and sour cream. Stir in corn meal. Add corn, onion, peppers, and cheese. Stir well. Pour into greased 9x13-inch pan and bake for 40 to 45 minutes at 400°.


Pumpkin Muffins

1 cake mix (spice or yellow mix)

1 can 15 or 16 oz. pumpkin puree (not pie filling)

Optional: May add chocolate chips

Directions:  Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Mix the cake mix with the pumpkin puree. Scoop into lined or well-greased muffin pan. Bake for 18-20 minutes (until toothpick comes out clean). Yield: 12 muffins.


Pumpkin Chess Pie

Pie Crust:

3 oz. cream cheese, softened

½ c. butter or margarine, softened

1 c. all-purpose flour

Directions:  In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese and butter, beat until smooth. Add flour; blend well. Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate for 30 minutes. Then, press dough into bottom and up sides of 9-inch pie pan. If desired, flute edges. Fill and bake as directed in pie recipe.

Pie Filling:

1 1/3 c. sugar

6 T. butter or margarine, softened

4 tsp. self-rising corn meal mix

½ tsp. salt

½ tsp. cinnamon

¼ tsp. ginger

¼ tsp. nutmeg

¼ tsp. cloves

1 can of canned pumpkin (not pie filling)

¼ c. plus 2 T. half-and-half

1 tsp. vanilla

2 eggs

Directions:  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In medium bowl, combine sugar and butter; beat with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add all remaining pie filling ingredients; beat until well blended. Pour filling into unbaked pie shell. Bake at 350° for 45 to 50 minutes or until knife inserted 1 inch from center comes out clean. Pie will continue to set as it cools. Cool on wire rack for 1 hour or until completely cooled. Refrigerate until well chilled before serving. If desired, serve topped with whipped cream. Store in refrigerator. Yield: 8 servings.


According to Mary Berry, “Cooking and baking is both physical and mental therapy” ( I enjoy cooking and baking as long as I don’t have to rush. Hopefully, you’ll enjoy these recipes.


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