It’s the Holiday season, time to warm up the oven, spice up the wine and share some good cheer! We all have a few favorite recipes that we like to cook up this time of year. Shields would like to share a few of ours in the hope that you will send us one of yours to include (please use the contact us form)!

Happy Holidays!

Ali: Nana’s Pizzelles

Ingredients:

6 eggs
1 ½ cups white sugar
1 cup butter, melted
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder

  1. Simmer In a medium bowl, beat the eggs with an electric mixer until light. Add the sugar, butter, lemon zest and vanilla, mix well. Stir in the flour and baking powder.
  2. Heat pizzelle iron. Drop batter by teaspoonfuls onto the center of the patterns, close the lid and cook for about 30 seconds. Test the cooking time on the first one, because temperatures may vary. Remove cookies carefully from the iron and cool on wire racks.
  3. Dust with powdered sugar.

Megan’s Magic Cookie Bars

Ingredients:

1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 (14 ounce) can EAGLE BRAND® Sweetened Condensed Milk
2 cups semisweet chocolate morsels
1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
1 cup chopped nuts

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F (325 degrees for glass dish). Coat 13x9-inch baking pan with no-stick cooking spray.
  2. Combine graham cracker crumbs and butter. Press into bottom of prepared pan. Layer evenly with: walnuts, chocolate chips, coconut (in that order!). Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over everything.
  3. Bake 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool. Cut into bars or diamonds. Store covered at room temperature.

Normally I make these as Christmas cookies, but they’re too good not to have year-round! Simple, easy and no-stress. :)

Steve’s Chicken and Rice with GREEN Stuff and Frank’s RED Hot

Ingredients:

A couple of pounds of thinly sliced chicken breast
Italian salad dressing
Bread crumbs
Olive oil
A box of rice
Some kind of green vegetable for a side

  1. Crack open a beer and fire up a Podcast.
  2. Get that rice on the burner so that it can cook while you’re preparing the chicken.
  3. Slice and trim the chicken breast so that it meets your wife’s standards. She doesn’t like “weird” looking pieces of chicken.
  4. Marinate sliced chicken in Italian salad dressing in a bowl.
  5. Coat chicken in breadcrumbs.
  6. Have a spouse or loved one prepare some type of green vegetable to create the illusion of a healthy meal.
  7. Coat some frying pans with olive oil, set the heat to medium and wait a few minutes. Then, add the chicken.
  8. Wait for the chicken to become golden brown, then flip. Hopefully the Health Inspector won’t show up, because I never check the internal temperature. I just eyeball it.
  9. If you timed it correctly, the rice and green stuff should be wrapping up with the chicken.
  10. Serve with salt and Frank’s red hot.

PRO TIP: Let your wife or loved one fill up on the green vegetable. That way you can stock up on the chicken and rice.

Sheryl: Nannie’s Banana Nut Bread

Ingredients:

3/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1/4 cup sour cream
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup mashed bananas
1 cup chopped walnuts
2 tsps. Vanilla

  1. Cream butter and sugar together.
  2. Add eggs and sour cream.
  3. Alternate combined dry ingredients and bananas, beginning and ending with dry ingredients.
  4. Stir in nuts and vanilla.
  5. Pour into greased and floured pan(s).
  6. Bake at 350 for an hour or until knife comes out clean when inserted.

Wrap in foil, and a pretty dishtowel, tie on a bow and you’re ready to share the love with those you care about!

Sally’s Mulled Wine

Ingredients:

Wine (I like Cabernet or Merlot, doesn’t need to be expensive)
Fresh oranges
Cinnamon
Mulling spices: Whole cloves and star anise
Sweetener: Sugar, Maple syrup or honey
Extra liquor: brandy, bourbon, cognac or Triple sec (whatever you prefer)

  1. Set aside a glass of wine for sipping.
  2. Place all ingredients in a saucepan.
  3. Simmer over medium heat (do not let it boil or the alcohol will go away and you will be sad).
  4. Reduce heat to low, cover, and let the wine simmer for at least 15 minutes but it can be for a few hours (no more than three).
  5. Using a strainer, remove and discard the orange slices, cloves, cinnamon sticks, star anise and ginger. Taste and stir in desired amount of extra sweetener if needed.
  6. Serve warm in heatproof mugs.
  7. Garnish with orange slices and cinnamon sticks.

Enjoy while roasting chestnuts by an open fire!

Paula’s Matzo Ball Soup

Ingredients:

Box of Matzo Ball & Soup Mix
Boneless chicken breast
Onion
Celery
Carrots
Sweet potato

It’s your soup - add as much or as little as you want.

  1. Open box, prepare soup as directed.
  2. Add all other ingredients.
  3. Simmer until vegetables are soft and chicken is cooked.
  4. Shred chicken.
  5. Prepare matzo balls as directed on the box and add to soup.
  6. Cover tightly.

Without cheese, before baking

Mary’s Delicata Squash Rings

I have several variations on this dish and it all depends on the amount of time I have, my ingredients on hand and if it needs to be vegan, or not.

Ingredients:

Chopped arugula
Chopped fresh parsley
Shallot or fresh garlic
Red pepper 
Fresh cranberries cut in half
Handful of freshly cooked black beans (optional and not necessary)
Pinch of red chili flake if you want kick
If you have anything else colorful, go for it.
Other ingredients I typically sauté together with extra virgin olive oil (and you do not need lots of these ingredients!):

  1. Slice squash into rings about 3/4”, remove seeds- feed to animals outside.
  2. If you have the time, cook up a small amount of tri-colored quinoa, set to the side. If you do not have the time, use plain Japanese panko crumbs.
  3. Cook other ingredients, don’t cook too long, maintain bright color.
  4. Combine the quinoa, or panko to mixture and stir in.
  5. Spoon mixture into the rings, top with Parmesan cheese (optional).
  6. I like to spritz the tops lightly with either balsamic vinegar or Mrs. Braggs liquid aminos (soy alternative that is much healthier).
  7. Bake around 375 for maybe 30 minutes until rings are tender.

Note:
YOU EAT THESE SQUASH SKINS!

Mary’s Roasted Vegetables

Make a huge sheet pan of assorted roasted veggies, put olive oil on pan before putting ingredients on. Favorite combos include cubes of butternut squash, red or yellow pepper, carrots, Brussels sprouts cut in half face down, cauliflower, sweet potato, red beets (put on one end then stir in after cooking since they will stain the other vegetables), fresh cranberries, and great when you have fresh herbs to add like parsley, chopped arugula or rosemary and sage in the warmer months. Sea salt lightly if desired, or lightly spritz with liquid aminos. Roast around 400 until vegetables are tender and herbs are crispy.

Nicole’s Lemon Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup sugar
10 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup powdered sugar

  1. Cream the butter and sugar in your stand mixer until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes then add in the lemon zest, vanilla, egg and lemon juice and combine fully.
  2. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together then add it to the stand mixer on medium speed and mix until just combined.
  3. Wrap the dough in saran wrap and refrigerate for at least two hours (preferably overnight), then when you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  4. Using a tablespoon scoop, drop tablespoon amounts into powdered sugar and roll until well covered then place onto a cookie sheet.
  5. Bake for 9-11 minutes, do not brown the cookies, they’ll be soft when they come out and harden as they cool.

Source: dinnerthendessert.com

Additional Recipes from Clients, Family and Friends

Scallops with Parmesan Risotto
Submitted By Leia McBroom

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon butter
1 minced clove garlic or 1 minced shallot (or both)
1 cup arborio rice
1/2 cup white wine
3 cups of chicken broth
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon oil
1 pound jumbo scallops
1 tablespoon
Garlic Spinach or Kale

  1. In a large non-stick skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the garlic or shallots and saute for a minute or two,until soft and fragrant. Add the arborio rice, stir to coat with butter. Add the white wine and enjoy the sizzles. Add the broth, 1/2 cup at atime, and simmer/stir after each addition until the rice is soft and creamy. I usually err on the side of more liquid to get a creamier texture.Add the parmesan and stir until incorporated. Salt + pepp to taste.
  2. Heat oil in nonstick skillet. Pat scallops dry (VERY DRY, as dry as possible), sprinkle with salt, and add to pan.They should sizzle (if not, you need a hotter pan.) Shake gently to prevent sticking. After 2-3 minutes, flip each scallop over. They shouldhave a pretty golden brown exterior and an opaque inside. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate to absorb excess oil. Serve immediately.
  3. Sautéed Spinach: Heat the oil over medium low heat. Add the garlic, stir for a minute to get the flavor going. Add the spinach or kale and stir until wilted.
  4. Put a few tablespoons of butter in a clean skillet over medium heat and stir it while watching it closely – when it starts to look golden and foamy, remove from heat, transfer to a heat-proof bowl to cool slightly, then drizzle over the risotto, scallops, and greens.

Source: pinchofyum.com

Hershey’s Magical Kisses
Submitted by Cindy Wright

Ingredients:

1 cup butter or margarine (2 sticks) , softened
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup HERSHEY’S Cocoa or HERSHEY’S SPECIAL DARK Cocoa
1/2 cup powdered sugar for rolling
About 48 HERSHEY’S KISSES Brand candy cane Kisses, unwrapped

  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Beat butter, granulated sugar and vanilla in large bowl until creamy. Stir together flour and cocoa; gradually add to butter mixture, beating until blended. Mold scant tablespoon dough around each chocolate piece, covering completely. Shape into balls. Place on ungreased cookie sheet.
  2. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until set. Cool about 1 minute; remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely. Roll in powdered sugar. Roll in sugar again just before serving, if desired. Makes about 48 cookies.

If you freeze them, it’s critical to do a second roll-in-confectionery-sugar once they’re defrosted. For optimum sugar shock, LOL!

Also, you really need to put very little batter around the kiss.

Source: www.hersheys.com

Theresa’s Anisette Cookies
Submitted by Lucille Cassis

½ stick butter
1 1/3 cup sugar
4 eggs
¼ teaspoon of anise flavor
2 ¾ cups flour
2 ½ teaspoons of baking powder

NOTE: Make sure eggs are at room temperature before proceeding. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  1. Blend first 3 ingredients together, adding the eggs one at a time. Then mix dry ingredients and add it to the egg mixture.
  2. To set the batter, put it in refrigerator for one hour.
  3. Then, by teaspoonfuls, place on cookie sheet about an inch or two apart.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for about 10-12 minutes. Test with a toothpick. If it comes out clean, they are done. They will dry out if overcooked.

Frosting:

To one cup of confectioners sugar, add a few drops of hot water to desired consistency. Drizzle over cookies when they are warm, but not if they are too hot (frosting will just melt off). Then quickly add colored, pearl shaped sprinkles, or other holiday sprinkles on top of the frosting.

Enjoy!

Hungarian Mushroom Soup
Submitted by Megan McBroom

Ingredients:

4 tbsp Butter
2 cups Onions, chopped
1 lb Mushrooms, sliced
2 cups Chicken or vegetable stock
1/2 cup Dry white wine
2 tsp Dried dill
2 tsp Fresh thyme
2 tsp Paprika
2 tbsp Soy sauce
1 cup Milk
3 tbsp Flour
1/4 cup Sour cream
2 tbsp Lemon juice
2 tbsp Fresh Italian parsley

  1. In a heavy pot or dutch oven sauté onions and mushrooms in butter over medium heat until onions are soft and translucent, about 15 minutes. Add dill, thyme, paprika, chicken broth, soy sauce and white wine. Bring to a simmer and cook until the liquid reduces by half. In a small bowl, whisk flour into milk until smooth. Add the milk mixture to the soup and cook until the soup begins to thicken, about 10 more minutes.
  2. Over low heat, slowly stir in the sour cream, and lemon juice until both are completely combined. Garnish the soup with parsley and serve hot.

Source: themodernproper.com

Eggplant
Submitted by Diana Wahrlich

Ingredients:

2 small - medium eggplants
4 - 6 tomatoes
6 cloves garlic sliced large
Italian breadcrumbs
Big bunch fresh basil
Parsley
Olive oil
Crushed red pepper
Salt and black pepper

  1. Put olive oil in a Teflon skillet, add large sliced garlic, add crushed red pepper flakes, sauté not long at all ( just warm it). Cut up eggplant into 1 inch chunks and throw into skillet, start cooking it med hi to high. Keep tossing occasionally. Chop up tomatoes and add inn. Keep tossing again occasionally again throughout the process. Chop up fresh basil and parsley.
  2. You are cooking pretty on high to remove the liquid. Add salt and pepper. Keep tossing. You probably will have to add more olive oil 2 or 3 times within the whole cooking  process if it dries up too fast. You do want it to Carmelize a bit so it does have to brown some time too.
  3. Sprinkle with italian breadcrumbs lightly and let it rest. Enjoy!

Red lentil, Cilantro and Lime Soup
Submitted by Arica McCarthy

Ingredients:

1 lb of red lentils about 2 ½ cups
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
1 large bunch of cilantro, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 freshly squeezed limes

  1. Spread the lentils on a large plate and remove any small stones and other debris
  2. Rinse lentils in a fine-mesh colander and rinse well until the water runs clear
  3. In a large soup pot, boil lentils in 8 cups of water until tender, about 20 minutes. The lentils will turn yellow. Skim and discard any white from the surface, if any.
  4. While the red lentils are cooking, heat olive oil in a medium-size skillet sauté cilantro and garlic for 3-4 minutes or until the cilantro turns dark green. Set aside
  5. When lentils are tender and cooked garlic and cilantro, lime juice and stir well.
  6. Simmer for an additional 20 minutes.

Source: mayihavethatrecipe.com

Oh, So Crunchy Cold Noodle Salad
Submitted by Phyllis M. Cahaly

Ingredients:

Kosher salt
1/2 lb. thin spaghetti
1 lb. sugar snap peas
1 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/3 cup soy sauce
3 Tablespoons sesame oil
1 Tablespoon honey
2 cloves of minced garlic
1 teaspoon of minced fresh ginger
3 Tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
2 red bell peppers, thinly sliced
1 carrot, julienned
4 scallions
3 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 Tablespoon sliced almonds

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the spaghetti and cook according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  2. Bring another large pot of salted water to a boil, add the sugar snap peas, boil, and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until crisp.
  3. Dressing: mix the vegetable oil, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, garlic, ginger, 2 tablespoons sesame seeds and peanut butter in a medium bowl.
  4. Combine the spaghetti, sugar snap peas, peppers, carrot, scallions and sliced almonds in a large bowl.
  5. Pour the dressing, mix and scatter with remaining sesame seeds.

Get crunchin’!

Tip: you can add in any favorite veggie like squash, broccoli, purple cabbage, etc.

P’s Peanut Butter Cookies
Submitted by Phyllis M. Cahaly

Ingredients

1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup softened butter (1/2 stick)
1/4 cup shortening (Crisco)
3/4 cup peanut butter
1 large egg
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Tip: Using an ice-cream scoop keeps cookies uniform for even coking!

  1. Mix: sugars, butter, shortening, peanut butter and egg
  2. Stir in remaining ingredients
  3. Cover dough and refrigerate at least 3 hours
  4. Heat oven to 375 degrees
  5. Shape dough into balls
  6. Place three inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet
  7. Flatten with the floured bottom ; add a crisscross pattern with a floured fork
  8. Bake until light brown, 9 to 11 minutes
  9. Cool 2 minutes on the cookie sheet, remove cookies and place on a wire rack to finishing cooling
  10. Stand back as crowd rushes by to devour!

Makes about 3 dozen

P’s Gingerbread Buddies
_Submitted by Phyllis Cahaly
_
(almost too cute to eat!)

Ingredients:

¾ cup shortening
1 cup honey
1 egg
¼ cup dark molasses
3 cups flour
½ tsp. salt
2 tsp. baking soda
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
1 Tbsp. ground ginger

  1. Mix all ingredients together and chill dough for 1 hour.
  2. Lightly flour your counter and roll dough to ¼ inch thick and use your favorite cookie cutter shapes.
  3. Place on lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes.
  4. Let cool completely before decorating.

For the icing:

Icing brings your Gingerbread Buddies to life! Royal Icing works best — to make from scratch:

3 ¾ cups of confectioners’ sugar
3 large egg whites
½ tsp. cream of tartar
Just a pinch of kosher salt
Food coloring if preferred

  1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the sugar, egg whites, cream of tartar and salt. Whisk until stiff peaks are glossy.
  2. Transfer frosting to piping bags fitted with very small round tips (sizes 1 to 2 work best). Pipe frosting onto cooled cookies and let set, at least 2 hours.

Tip: be sure to chill the dough

Jalapeño Popper Wontons_
Submitted by Leia McBroom_

Ingredients:

Wonton wrappers
Cream cheese
Sour cream
Bacon
Shredded cheddar cheese
Jalapeños

  1. Press wonton wrappers gently into greased muffin pan and pre-bake. This step is essential to ensure crispy (not soggy) wonton cups.
  2. Prepare filling by mixing ingredients together. You can either refrigerate the filling for later or use it right away by spooning it into pre-baked wonton cups. (*If you plan to save it for later, be sure to store your baked wonton cups in an airtight container.)
  3. Bake filled wonton cups until golden brown; garnish as desired.
  4. Store leftovers in the refrigerator and re-heat in the oven.

Source: www.lemontreedwelling.com

Christmas Eve Fish
Submitted by Gail Snow Moraski

While neither me and my husband are Italian, we’ve always loved the Italian premise of serving seven fishes on Christmas Eve, and have often served fish to our Christmas Eve guests. Here are two recipes that we’ve made and served together on a recent Christmas Eve.

Pesto Swordfish

Ingredients:

Fresh swordfish steak (size of steak and how many steaks you will need will vary by the # of people you need to feed).
Lemon juice – fresh from several lemons or from lemon juice container like the plastic lemon-shaped ones you buy at the grocery store
Salt
Pepper
Paprika
Extra virgin olive oil
One small tub pre-made basil pesto sauce (found in refrigerator section of grocery store, often produce section, where they sell fresh pasta)

  1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees – yup, 500! Fish comes out best when it’s cooked for a short period of time in high heat.
  2. Place your steak(s) in one or several casserole dishes.
  3. Squeeze lemon juice on top of your steak(s).
  4. Drizzle about a teaspoon of olive oil over each steak.
  5. Sprinkle salt, pepper, and paprika on each steak.
  6. Note that you don’t want to put your pesto sauce on your steak until it comes out of the oven. There is no need to cook or heat your pesto sauce.
  7. Depending on thickness of steak, cook for about 15 to 20 minutes. We’ve found 15 minutes is usually good for each inch thick a steak is, but sometimes, you need to cook it a bit longer. When you take it out of the oven, cut into it and look to see if the meat of the fish looks cooked. You don’t want to overcook it, or the steak will be tough, not moist and soft. You want guests to be able to cut it with their fork.
  8. As soon as your swordfish comes out of the oven, spread a layer of cold pesto sauce on your steak – how much you put on is up to your liking. The warm steak will melt and warm up the pesto sauce.

So easy and so yummy! Guests will be impressed and love it!

Panko-Breadcrumb-Crusted Haddock

Ingredients:

Fresh Haddock Filet (assume 0.75 lb. piece for every two guests)
Lemon juice – fresh from several lemons or from lemon juice container like the plastic lemon-shaped ones you can buy at the grocery store
Salt
Pepper
Paprika
Extra virgin olive oil
Container of panko bread crumbs

  1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees – yup, 500! Fish comes out best when it’s cooked for a short period of time in high heat.
  2. Place your haddock filets in one or several casserole dishes.
  3. In a small bowl, mix about 3/4 of a cup of panko breadcrumbs with at least a tablespoon olive oil (if you want your breadcrumbs extra crispy, you may want to add a bit more olive oil). Add a teaspoon of paprika, a tablespoon of lemon juice, half teaspoon of salt, and half teaspoon of black pepper. Mix all together, so your breadcrumbs are nice and orange in color and breadcrumbs are moist. Give mixture a taste to see if you want and need to add a bit more lemon juice, salt or pepper, or paprika, based on your and your family’s tastes. If it tastes a bit too spicy for you, just add in some more breadcrumbs to tone it down a bit. Note: this mixture covers one 0.75 – 1 lb. filet, so if you want and need to coat a much larger quantity of fish, you will need to adjust the breadcrumb recipe accordingly.
  4. Evenly coat the top of your filets with the breadcrumb mixture, so that it’s about ¼ inch or so thick.
  5. Place your coated fish in your preheated oven and cook for 10 minutes for each inch of filet thickness. You may want to cook longer, depending on how your family enjoys your fish to be cooked.

With its yummy, crunchy breadcrumb coating, you can even get finicky eaters and non-fish-lovers to enjoy this fish!

RJ’s Notorious Italian Pork Chops
Submitted by RJ Ciccolo

A little bit of this, a little bit of that - no measuring required!

Boneless pork chops (if very thick cut in half lengthwise)
Eggs (beaten)
Flour
Breadcrumbs
Canadian bacon slices
Olive oil
Garlic (chopped)
Butter
Salt and pepper
Marinara sauce
Shredded cheese
Spaghetti
Steamed broccoli (optional!)

  1. Dredge pork cutlets in eggs - flour - breadcrumbs (in that order)
  2. Heat oil and butter in a large skillet - add garlic. Saute until soft, being careful not to brown
  3. Add pork and saute until each side is lightly browned
  4. Remove cutlets to baking dish and top each with a slice or two if the Canadian bacon and couple of spoonfuls of the marinara sauce - spread
  5. Top each with shredded cheese of your choice
  6. Bake in a 350º oven for approx. 20-25 minutes or until cutlets are cooked and cheese is melted
  7. Meanwhile cook pasta until el dente
  8. Add to skillet with pan drippings and toss
  9. If desired add broccoli

Serve with pork cutlets and a glass (or two) of an Italian red wine

MANGIA!