Sunday, August 23, 2009

Sour Cream Lemon Pie

Being a lover of Lemon Meringue pie, this recipe caught my attention several years ago. It was delicious! I recently had a friend tell me they saw my recipe in the Hershey cookbook and their family was a little skeptical of the sour cream in the recipe. Then she made it and her family loved it too! Give it a try and I bet you will find it a delicious way to end a meal. You could probably substitute a graham cracker crust so you could avoid turning on the oven to bake the crust. I'm planning on trying it as a parfait with no crust at all.

Sour Cream Lemon Pie

1 c. sugar

3 1/2 T. cornstarch

3 egg yolks, beaten

1 T. grated lemon peel

1/2 c. fresh lemon juice

1 c. milk

1/4 c. butter

1 c. sour cream

1 baked pie shell

1/2 pint whipping cream, whipped

Mix sugar, cornstarch, egg yolks, lemon peel and juice, and milk in a heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick. Add butter and stir until butter is melted and blended. Let cool to room temperature and then blend in the sour cream. Spread in the pie shell and top with whipped cream. Store in refrigerator.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Spicy Beef Tortillas

Now that my garden has yielded onions and is finally giving me some tomatoes and peppers, I thought I would share a long-time family favorite. Enjoy!


4 Large flour tortillas
1 pound ground beef round (extra-lean beef)
1 green pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
3 tablespoons medium hot salsa sauce
Sour cream or unflavored yogurt

Wrap tortillas in foil, heat in 350 degree oven until warm, about 5 minutes or heat in microwave for about 1 minute on high, wrapping them in a paper towel. Cook and stir beef, pepper and onion in a large non-stick surface skillet over medium heat until beef is browned. Stir in salsa sauce, heat until hot. With slotted spoon, place beef mixture in each tortilla. Serve with sour cream or yogurt.
Yogurt further decreases the calories.

This is delicious and doesn't need extra cheese,lettuce, or tomatoes to make it good. An easy way to serve the sour cream or yogurt (both are good) is to spread it on the tortilla with a knife as if you were buttering it before adding the meat mixture. This gives every bite a taste of the sour cream. When my kids were young they preferred these over any other taco. I liked them because they aren't heavy on salt like tacos made from commercial taco seasoning mixes.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Fresh green beans make a great stir-fry!

Sesame Beef with Green Beans

1 lb. green beans, ends trimmed
1 Tbsp oil
3/4 lb. flank or round steak, cut into thin slices
2 1/2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 1/2 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. sesame oil
4 tsp. toasted sesame seeds

Slice beans into 1 1/2-inch diagonal slices. Parboil four to five minutes or until tender-crisp. Drain and set aside.
Heat oil in wok over high heat. Add beef and stil-fry one to two minutes, or until meat is no longer pink. Add beans and stir-fry 30seconds.
Add soy sauce, sugar and sesame oil. Stir-fry 30 seconds. Remove from heat. Add sesame seeds and toss. Serve hot or cold.
Makes 4 servings.

I discovered this recipe in my early years of doing the cooking spot and it is definitely a family favorite. I've never eaten it cold as suggested but it would be good that way too. I use top round, sirloin tip or sirloin for the beef. I also make it with pork, usually using pork sirloin.

Sesame oil is a great flavoring found in the Oriental foods section of the grocery store and you could skip the sesame seeds but I look the looks of stir fry with the sesame seed accent. Remember the sesame oil is for flavoring, not to use as the oil in the recipe.

I buy sesame seeds in bulk at a health food/natural foods grocery store and then keep them in a container in the fridge. I admit, I don't always toast them, usually just tossing them in just a little earlier when I'm still cooking the stir-fry.

Here's a quick definition of parboiling: To parboil at home, fill a pot on the stove with boiling water and prepare the food you intend to parboil. When the water boils, toss the food in, and cook it until it starts to soften. Drain the food and run cold water over it so that the color will set and the food will not turn to mush. Set the food aside until you are ready to throw it into the primary dish you are cooking, or put it into a storage container if you do not intend to use it right away.

This is almost the same as the blanching method I use to prepare my garden beans for freezing, except the beans are only in the boiling water for 3 minutes. I do freeze a few small batches of my beans to have ready for this recipe after my garden has quit producing. The frozen beans aren't quite as crisp but good all the same. I adjust the quantities up and down depending on how many people I'm serving. It's a great way to stretch a small amount of meat because the beans are so filling and delicious! Enjoy!