Recipes for Success

Published 5:02 pm Wednesday, October 25, 2006

By Staff
It was my intention this week to begin presenting recipes that would help you begin your holiday meal planning.
As you know, the road to you-know-where is paved with good intentions. But I have a really good reason for putting this one off.
On Saturday the Family Career and Community Leaders of America club at T.R. Miller High School held a cooking contest. I was lucky enough to cover the event and get a taste of the dishes that were prepared. Boy, what fun. And I even got a few recipes out the deal.
The winning recipe/dish is one that you might be able to prepare during the upcoming holiday season. It would make a beautiful presentation on the table during the Christmas season. With bright, red tomatoes and green lettuce surrounding the dish, it is very colorful. And the dish is mighty tasty and would surely suit many tastes.
I was only able to get three of the five recipes that were used in Saturday's cook-off.
When I get the others, I'll be happy to pass them along as well.
I'm going to do everything in my power to get the Fireman's Hamburger recipe that was prepared by Chase Crosby. They were wonderful, but he didn't have a copy of his recipe on hand.
Another recipe that I didn't get on Saturday was the one for Porky Pine Meatballs that was prepared by Eva Riddle and Britney Weaver. They were really good.
The recipes that I did get are listed here. Try one or all of them; I'm sure you'll have a great time with preparation and eating.
The first recipe is by Spinks Megginson who received an honorable mention. He says this is a family recipe. I certainly would love to be a part of his family. It was wonderful and very filling.
Hamburger Spaghetti Casserole
1 lb. ground beef
1 onion, chopped fine
1 pkg. angel hair spaghetti noodles
1 can tomato soup
1 28 oz. jar Ragu spaghetti sauce
Velveeta cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brown meat and onion, then drain. Cook noodles and drain them. Mix the meat and the noodles with one-fourth pound of cubed cheese. Add tomato soup and spaghetti sauce. Pour into casserole dish and top with one-fourth pound cheese. Bake until bubbly.
Told you it sounded good, and it really was. The Velveeta was such a change in the way I usually do a spaghetti casserole. It would be a hit with my family so I am sure to add this one to my recipe box.
The second place winner was a recipe prepared by Shane Thomas. With a great taste and hearty ingredients this is a meal all by itself. You may have a similar version in your recipe box and this one is certainly worth a try. The following is how Shane said to prepare this dish.
Taco Soup
First brown one pound of ground beef. Drain and discard the grease. In a stock pot or other large pot, add the following ingredients to the browned beef: 1 pkg. of taco seasoning; one pkg. of dry Ranch dressing; one can pinto beans; one can of black beans; two cans of diced tomatoes; one can of Rotelle tomatoes; one can of shoepeg corn; two cups of water. Chili pepper season can be added to your desired taste. Stir all ingredients together. Cook over medium heat for at least 30 minutes. Serve the soup over Tostitos or corn ships. Top with any of the following ingredients: sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, salsa and/or sliced jalapeno peppers.
The winning recipe in the contest was one prepared by David Wilson. His taco ring was a big hit with the judges and I must say I really liked it too. Anytime you combine bread and beef, it's sure to be a winner.
Taco Ring
One-half pound ground beef, cooked and drained
1 pkg. taco seasoning mix
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 tbsp. water
2 pkgs. Refrigerated crescent roll dough
1 medium green bell pepper
one-half head lettuce
1 medium tomato
1 small onion
one-half cup whole pitted black olives
1 cup salsa
sour cream
Preheat oven to 375. Combine cooked meat, seasoning mix, cheese and water in a two-quart bowl. Arrange crescent triangles in a circle on a 13-inch round baking stone with bases overlapping in center and points to the outside. There should be a five-inch diameter circle in the center. Using a medium scoop, spoon meat mixture over rolls. Fold points of triangles over filling and tuck under base at center. Filling will not be completely covered. Bake 20 minutes to 25 minutes or until golden brown.
Using a v-shaped cutter, cut off the top of the bell pepper. Shred lettuce and cube tomato. Chop onion and slice olives. Place bell pepper in center of ring; fill with salsa. Mound lettuce, onion, tomato and olives around pepper. Garnish with sour cream. Cut with a pizza cutter and serve.
What a day. Try these recipes and I'll bet you'll wonder how these high school students were able to prepare such great food. One of the things that impressed me most was that men ran four of the five kitchens in the competition. It's great to see guys follow in the steps of other great chefs. And from what I tasted on Saturday, they are well on their way.
Next week, I promise, to get into some holiday cooking ideas. If you have a recipe that you'd like to share or if you need a recipe for a particular dish, please let me know. You can either drop the recipe or request by the office on St. Nicholas Avenue; give me a call at 867-4876, or by email at
Until next week, Happy Cooking!

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