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Mint Coffee

1/2 cup coffee flavored liquer; (optional)
4 cup hot coffee
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 container (8oz) frozen; thawed whipped topping
1/4 cup green creme de menthe
4 mini mint patties

Pour coffee liquer evenly into 4 coffee glasses. Divide coffee and cinnamon evenly as well. Mix. Spoon whipped topping evenly over each coffee. Drizzle creme de menthe over the whipped topping. Place a mint pattie on top of each coffee. Serve immediately
Also try putting the mint pattie in with the hot coffee and just let the mint and chocolate melt into the drink.
Please Drink Responsibly.

Toffee Blondies

1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter; room temperature
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans
1/2 cup toffee chips

Heat oven to 350°F. Coat a 13x9x2-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
Stir together flour, baking powder and salt in small bowl.
Beat butter with both sugars in bowl until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla, then flour mixture. Fold in 1/4 cup pecans and toffee chips. Pour into pan. Sprinkle with remaining chopped pecans.
Bake in 350°F oven for 25-30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on rack.

Fudgy Chocolate Raspberry Brownies

1 cup packed raspberries, fresh or thawed
4 oz unsweetened chocolate, chop
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cubed
3 eggs
1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon icing sugar

In food process or blender pure raspberries; pass through fine sieve to remove seeds. Set aside.
In top of double boiler over hot (not boiling) water, melt chocolate with butter; let cool slightly.
In bowl, beat eggs with sugar for about 5 minutes or until pale and thickened. On low speed, beat in vanilla and chocolate mixture; beat in raspberry pure. With wooden spoon, stir in flour.
Scrape batter into greased 9-inch square cake pan. Bake in 350°F 180°C oven for 25-30 minutes or until cake tester inserted in centre still has moist crumbs clinging to it. Let cool completely in pan on rack. Sprinkle with icing sugar. Cut into squares.
[Squares can be covered and stored in refrigerator for up to 5 days or frozen in airtight container for up to 1 month.]
Serve with a raspberry sauce and fresh raspberries for an elegant presentation, or simply sprinkle with icing sugar.

Green Chile Stew

2 lb lean chuck; cut in small cubes
2 tablespoon oil
1/2 medium onion; chopped
4 medium potatoes; peeled and diced
4 medium zucchini squash; chopped
12 large green chiles; roasted and peeled
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup water

Brown the chuck in a little oil in a large deep pan. Add the onions, saute 3-5 minutes. Add the potatoes. When the ingredients have browned pour off any oil. Add the zucchini, if used, the chiles cut up, garlic salt, salt and water. Bring to a boil and simmer for at least 1/2 hour. Stew should be eaten with a spoon like a hearty soup.

Mediterranean Salad

1 medium head romaine lettuce, torn
3 small toamtoes, diced
1 medium cucumber, sliced
1 small green bell pepper, sliced
1 small onion, cut into rings
6 radishes, thinly sliced
1/2 cup parsley, chopped
1/3 cup olive oil
3 tablespoon lemon juice
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 salt & pepper
1 teaspoon mint
1 pita halves

Most of these ingredients are available year round now. If not, replace as needed.
Combine lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, pepper, onion, radishes & parsley in a salad bowl. Whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper & mint. Pour over salad & toss to coat. Serve immediately with warm pita halves.

Corned Beef Dinner

4 lb corned beef brisket
12 oz bottle of beer
1 small onion, peeled
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
4 black peppercorns
2 stalks celery with leaves
8 potatoes, peeled and halved
8 large carrots, peeled and halved
1 medium head green cabbage, quartered
Place the brisket in a deep kettle and add cold water to just cover.
Add the beer, onion, bay leaf, cloves, peppercorns and celery. Cover and bring to a boil. Immediately reduce the head and let simmer about 4 hours (about 3/4 to 1 hour per pound of meat) until tender.
About 30 minutes before the meat is done, remove and discard the onion and celery. Skim the excess fat from the liquid. Add the potatoes and carrots; simmer 15 minutes.
Add the cabbage quarters and simmer an additional 15 minutes, or until the vegetables are done to the desired tenderness. Note: Additional water can replace the beer in this recipe.
This may be a more economical and practical Christmas Dinner for some.

French Bread

1 pkg dry yeast; (2 1/2 tsp)
1 cup warm water; (105 to 115°F)
3 cup bread flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 cooking spray
1 tablespoon water
1 large egg white

Dissolve the yeast in warm water in a small bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; and level with a knife. Place the flour and salt in a food processor, and pulse 2 times or until blended. With the food processor on, slowly add yeast mixture through food chute, and process until the dough forms a ball. Process 1 additional minute. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead lightly 4 to 5 times
Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover dough, and let rise in a warm place (85°F), free from drafts, 45 minutes or until doubled in bulk.
Punch dough down, and shape into a 6-inch round loaf. Place loaf on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Cover dough and let rise 30 minutes or until doubled in bulk.
Preheat oven to 450°F. Uncover dough, and make 3 diagonal cuts 1/4-inch deep across top of loaf using a sharp knife. Combine 1 tblsp water and egg white, and brush mixture over top of loaf. Bake at 450 degrees for 20 minutes or until loaf sounds hollow when tapped.
Notes: This bread is best when eaten the same day it is baked. If you have any left over, do as the French do: Use it to make French toast or a bread pudding. To make a baguette, let the bread dough rise once. Punch dough down, and roll into an 18x9-inch rectangle on a lightly floured surface. Roll up the dough, starting at the longer edge, pressing down firmly to eliminate any air pockets; then pinch seam and edges to seal. Cover the dough, let rise, and bake according to recipe instructions above.

Citrusy Garlic Chicken

2 whole heads garlic
4 chicken legs, skinned
2 teaspoon grated orange rind
1/4 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil (or 1 teaspoon; dried)
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt

Separate garlic heads into cloves and peel; arrange in 8 inch square baking dish. Place chicken over top.
Stir together orange rind and juice, basil, oil, pepper and salt; pour over chicken. Cover and bake in 325°F oven, basting once, for 1 hour or until juices run clear when chicken is pierced.
Pour pan juices and garlic into food processor or blender; puree until smooth. Broil chicken for 3 to 5 minutes or until well browned on top. Serve with sauce. Makes 4 servings.

Citrus-Marinated Pork Chops

2 chipotle chiles; dried
1/2 cup frozen orange juice; thawed
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1 orange; medium, **
6 pork loin or rib chops; *
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoon orange peel; grated
1 clove garlic

* Pork chops should be cut about 1/2-inch thick.
** Orange should be cut into 6 wedges.
Cover chiles with water. Let stand until softened, about 1 hour. Drain and finely chop. Place pork chops in a shallow glass or plastic dish. Place chiles and remaining ingredients, except the orange, in a blender container. Cover and blend, at low speed, until smooth. Pour over chops. Cover and refrigerate at least 3 hours, spooning marinade over chops occasionally. Set oven control to broil. Remove chops from marinade and sit marinade aside. Place chops on rack in a broiler pan. Broil, with tops of the chops 3 to 5 inches from the heat, until light brown, about 10 minutes. Turn the chops and brush with the marinade. Broil until chops are done, about 5 minutes longer. Garnish with orange wedges and serve.

Marinated Mushrooms

1 lb fresh medium mushrooms, stems removed
1 cup olive oil
1 grated zest of 1 medium orange
1 grated zest of 1 medium lemon
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
2 large garlic cloves, very finely chopped
2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon mustard seed
2 teaspoon finely chopped cilantro leaves
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Place mushrooms, oil, zests and juices in a non reactive saucepan over high heat. Bring just to a boil and remove from heat. Transfer mixture to a glass jar or bowl, and stir in garlic, salt, mustard seed, oregano,cilantro, cayenne, and pepper. Allow to cool completely, then cover and refrigerate, stirring occasionally, for at least 24 hours before serving. Drain mushrooms and serve. Serves 4.

Beef Stew With Cranberries

2 tablespoon safflower oil
2 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 lb stewing beef or lamb or pork cut into 1-in cubes
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 freshly ground pepper
2 large garlic cloves; peeled
2 medium onions; peeled
3/4 cup dry red wine
3/4 cup beef stock or beef broth
2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 1/2 cup fresh cranberries
1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
2 tablespoon flour

Heat 1 tablespoon each of oil and butter in 6-quart pot. When oil is hot, add half the beef and brown it well on all sides; remove and reserve. Heat remaining oil and butter and brown remaining meat. Remove pot from heat, remove meat and discard fat. Return meat to pot and toss with 1/2 teaspoon of salt and freshly ground pepper. Metal blade: Turn on machine, drop garlic through feed tube and process until minced; add to pot. Medium shredding disk: Use firm pressure to shred onions. Use slotted spoon to lift onions from their juice and add to pot. Discard juice. Add wine, stock or broth, vinegar, tomato paste and remaining 1/4 teaspoon of salt to pot and bring to boil. Reduce to simmer, cover and cook until meat is tender--about 2 hours. Metal blade: Pulse to chop cranberries coarsely with brown sugar and flour. Add cranberries to pot, stir well and cook for 10 minutes longer. Can be served immediately, but best if made up to 4 days in advance, refrigerated and gently reheated. Adjust seasoning. Can also be frozen up to 3 months.

Basil-Garlic Chicken Breasts With Peaches

1 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup molasses
2 tablespoon freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 cup basil; roughly chopped
3 tablespoon garlic; minced
1/4 cup olive oil
4 whole boneless chicken breasts**
salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
4 peaches; halved and pitted

Note: ** 10 to 12 ounces each. If you can't find boneless chicken breasts with the two halves still attached, substitute 8 halves.
Instructions: In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the vinegar to a boil and cook until it is reduced by half, 20 to 25 minutes. Stir in the molasses and black pepper, remove from the heat and set aside.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the basil, garlic and olive oil, and mix well. Rub the chicken breasts with this mixture, sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper, and grill over a medium fire, skin side down, until the skin is crispy, 8 to 10 minutes. Turn the breasts over and grill for another 6 minutes. To check for doneness, nick one of the breasts at the fattest point; the meat should be fully opaque with no traces of pink.
As the chicken breasts are finishing up, place the peaches on the fire, cut side down, and grill until they are nicely browned, about 2 minutes. Flip them over, brush the cut side with the balsamic glaze, and continue to cook for another 2 minutes. Remove the peaches from the grill, give them another coat of glaze, and serve whole or sliced with the chicken breasts.

Lamb Hash And Poached Eggs

2 tablespoon butter
2 celery stalks; finely diced
1 medium onion; finely diced
2 tablespoon flour
1 cup finely minced cooked lamb
2 medium potatoes
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 ground black pepper
12 poached eggs

Melt 2 tblsp butter in a small saucepan over medium heat, add the celery and onion and cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with flour, and cook, stirring constantly, another minute. Remove from heat and scrape mixture into a mixing bowl to cool. Add the lamb. Wash the potatoes but don't peel them. Shred them on the shredding blade of a food processor, or coarsely grate them by hand. Add the potatoes to the bowl and mix well. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Melt 1 teaspoon of butter in a 6-inch non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add about 3/4- to 1-cup of the hash mixture, or about a 2-inch thickness. Cook without stirring or moving the hash for 3 minutes. Flip the hash, which will have formed into a patty. Reduce heat to low and continue to cook another 5 minutes. Repeat with the remaining mixture. As each hash patty is done, transfer to the oven and keep warm. To serve the hash, place 2 poached eggs on each serving.

Leek and Potato Soup with Ham

1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
3 tablespoon olive oil
6 leeks; thinly sliced (about 4 cups)
10 potatoes; peeled and cut into
1 cup cooked ham; cut into 1/2-inch
10 cup chicken stock
3 cup red cabbage; thinly sliced
salt & pepper

In a large stock pot heat cumin, caraway and fennel seeds over medium heat until lightly toasted and fragrant; do not burn. Remove to a small plate. Add oil and heat over medium-low heat. Add leeks and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add potatoes, ham and stock, bring to a boil, then add cabbage and reserved seeds. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Remeber, you can substitute that ham and stock with another meat and stock, or omit it all together.

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