ManassasMa Recipe Reviews (Pg. 2) - Allrecipes.com (10181522)

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Cornmeal Yeast Bread

Reviewed: Mar. 27, 2009
After 40+ years of cooking, this was the absolute 1st loaf of yeast bread I ever attempted and it turned out GREAT. I mistakenly purchased RapidRise yeast (as opposed to Active) and had to make some minor adjustments to the initial steps so I don't know if the bread would have been even better if I had been able to follow the directions exactly. Except that I can't imagine how it could have been. Oh, yeah -- the recipe produced 2 loaves and the both of them together baked up wonderfully in my convection oven in 25 minutes.
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Quick Onion Bread

Reviewed: Feb. 28, 2009
I make at least 4 "quick breads" per week (so as to incorporate them into 6 "lunch pails" per day) so I was delighted when I came across this recipe. I doubled the recipe (so as to make 2 pies) and added a 1/2 cup more water [because I incorporated approx. 1/2 fistful of grated Parmesan cheese and 4 oz. Velveeta (sliced thinly and then halved); CHEESE is a MUST for my horde] into the batter. Result: 1 pie was DEVOURED at dinner with CLAMORS for lunch box inclusion (do I know my guys -- 2 sons, 1 SIL and DH -- or what? LOL). Still-pregnant Daughter wasn't tremendously impressed (might be hormones, but she's always been the pickiest of my kids) while I, personally, liked it alot. I haven't yet tried to bake this in either a loaf or muffin pan, but the batter consistency suggests it will "work" well in either. I would have given this recipe 5 stars -- except I did add the cheeses.
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Tuna Noodle Casserole from Scratch

Reviewed: Feb. 25, 2009
This is a excellent recipe, and it's quite adaptable. My family loves it, even though I rarely make it the same way every time. For instance, sometimes I use shell or elbow pasta instead of noodles, sometimes I add frozen peas and carrots instead of just peas, sometimes I substitute green beans for the peas, sometimes I use shredded zucchini and carrots (fresh), sometimes I include roasted bell pepper, sometimes I use 1/2 cream cheese and 1/2 American or Velveeta, etc. I ALWAYS include the onion (sometimes I use scallions/spring onions), celery, garlic and mushrooms, though. Not moist enough for you (especially the next day)? Often I add 1/2 pint of halved Grape tomatoes but adding 1 vegetable buillion cube to 1/2 cup of water while preparing the cream sauce has been known to work well for me.
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Easy American Potato and Tuna Casserole

Reviewed: Feb. 24, 2009
I, personally, have never used potatoes in my tuna casseroles (never thought to; DUH!) but my Daughter used this recipe as a base for a cooking class she's taking at our local CC. She "tweaked" it by using 4 cans of albacore tuna (it was on sale/50% off) rather than 3 and adding 1 Knorr's vegetable boullion cube to the "potato water". She added 1/2 stick of butter and 1 T. fresh chives to the potatoes when she "mashed" them (with our hand mixer) and tossed the tuna with 1/2 tsp. fresh dill, 1 tsp. ReaLemon, 1 stalk of celery (chopped fine), 1/2 medium zucchini, 2 carrots (she used our "vegetable peeler" to give them a "julienned" look) and some mushrooms (whatever I had in the refrigerator). Then she "layered" it: bottom layer - potatoes with parmesan cheese (all 3 T.); middle layer - the tuna mixture; top level - more of the potato mixture (no parmesan, but 3 slices of Mozzarella "folded" in). She TOPPED her "presentation" with 3 slices of Provolone (a little bit more of a "kick" but not overpowering) and baked it for 25-30 minutes. HER recipe made 2 "presentations", so she used 4 eggs, 3/4 cup of 2% milk and 1 cup of vegetable boullion (for moisture). My Daughter got an "A" for her assignment and I've been delegated to making no fewer than 6 of "her creations" for a Lenten "pot luck" at our Church. In brief: we felt this was a good basic recipe but only with her/our added "tweaks" would we give it 5 stars.
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Mozzarella Tuna Melts

Reviewed: Feb. 16, 2009
While there was nothing really wrong with these sandwiches, there are better recipes. For example, we enjoy melted Mozzarella cheese on many things, but not on these. It was just too bland (I wound up sprinkling all of the sandwiches with grated parmesan just to get some flavor). In the future, I will continue to use either Swiss, American or Provolone when I make Tuna melts for my family. And while we like Hamburger buns when I make hamburgers, we prefer I use more "flavorful" breads for tuna melts (some variations might include English muffins, seeded sandwich rye or potato bread). My daughter doesn't like tomatoes (she's 22 years old, so I think it's time she gets over that) so instead of slicing up a "beefsteak" or 2, I usually just halve or quarter some cherry or grape tomatoes and include them in the salad. Also, since we all like lettuce but some of us find it too "cumbersome" to top a sandwich with, I often simply run some through the food processor and fold it, too, right into the salad (a good "trick" to use if you've got older young children -- ages 7-10 or 11, perhaps; most of the time, they won't even know it's there, so they won't complain and even kids who actually like lettuce will find it easier to eat this way.) Oh, yes -- we're 6 adults (and my daughter is pregnant), so I use no fewer than 3 and sometimes 4 cans of Tuna; I can't imagine getting 4 servings from 1 6 oz. can.
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Basic Ham and Bean Soup

Reviewed: Feb. 4, 2009
My family LOVES when I cook with Great Northern and/or Navy beans. And, yet, in 40+ years of cooking, I had never before used "hocks" in my preparations. But my supermarket had them on sale ($0.99/lb.) so I thought I'd buy some and see what I might be able to do with them. Which is how I came across this recipe. I used 2 "hocks" and left out the haml other than that, I followed the recipe. My soup/stew was DELICIOUS. Not only will I be making this again and again, but I think I'll be using ham hocks in many of my preparations from here on out. Succulent and DELICIOUS, NUTRITIONAL and ECONOMICAL to boot. When one is attempting to feed 6 (+1 "on the way"), who can ask for more?
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Sweet Potato Soup

Reviewed: Feb. 4, 2009
This is a really good soup, but it seemed to lack "something" when I made it the first time. The SECOND time I made it, I substituted salted butter for the margarine and added 1 good sized Vidallia onion (skinned and sliced), 3 (fresh and scraped) carrots and 1 parsnip (ditto). When I served "my soup" to my family (adults), I called it "Root Soup". Except that, after they were finished giggling at Mom and her idyos, they gobbled it up like little I had ever seen before. Want to/need to add meat (which I plan to do in the future)? I'd suggest either Italian sausage or Kielbasa (something with FLAVOR). Want to add Cheese? My personal favorite is Velveeta (it melts so easily) but I think Parmesan, Locatelli, Romano and/or any "goat cheese" (perhaps FETA) would "work" very well here, too. In brief, while I genuinely like the idea of using this soup as a "base", there's SO MUCH MORE that it can be. IMO, "creaming" this soup is a MUST; use either 1/2+1/2 or heavy/whipping cream. I generally "pulverize" (using my immersion blender) at least 1/3 of my "pot" before I serve. I find that this allows to a really great texture/"dining experience".
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Turkey Noodle Stew

Reviewed: Dec. 28, 2008
We're not particularly great Turkey fans in my house, but this recipe is a genuine KEEPER. I made it just as written last night (using leftover turkey from Christmas dinner) and it was really quite good. But it does lend itself to "versatility" (a GOOD thing), too. Next time I make it I think: (1) I'll probably include fresh celery (finely chopped) and make my own "cream of" sauce; (2) instead of (or perhaps in addition to) the mixed vegetables, I'll use chopped broccoli, cauliflower and carrots;(c) I might toss in some canned or fresh mushrooms; and (d) I'll top "the dish" with a melting cheese (whether Cheddar, American or Velveeta -- although I think Swiss and/or Provolone would "work" really well, too). I don't think this meal -- however prepared -- needs to be baked (although some may want to do that). It was GREAT over wide noodles, but I'm thinking right now that I might either toss it over Penne pasta or over white rice the next time I make it. In brief, this is a really really good base recipe -- even for those among us who may not get particularly excited when/if we're eating Turkey.
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Lemon Garlic Tilapia

Reviewed: Dec. 28, 2008
My family LOVES Tilapia (our substitute for both Flounder fillets and Scallops, both of which are too expensive for us these days). I USED to egg batter and bread my fish fillets before either frying or baking them. But this recipe put an end to that! DELICIOUS as presented. But also REALLY good when braised (in either vegetable or chicken broth) with recommended seasonings (plus a sprinkling of paprika) and adorned with slices of tomato. Served with a "green" (I usually use Spinach, but Kale or Escarole work well, too) and over rice or Cheesy Polenta (a recipe I found here on AllRecipes) and, in my opinion, this is a dinner that can be served to royalty!
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Restaurant-Style Zuppa Toscana

Reviewed: Dec. 28, 2008
I make this soup (or some rendition of it) every Thursday night. It's a GREAT "base" recipe in that it's quite versatile. For instance, my husband likes the "bitter" greens (kale, escarole, collards, etc.) better than I do so whenever they're on sale I stock up; otherwise, I use Spinach (my preference). I sometimes leave out the sausage (but always include the bacon). I often substitute either (dried) Cannellini (white pinto) beans or Great Northerns for the potatoes. I usually cook the "greens" in my slow cooker/crockpot on Wednesday night (all night on low; when using beans, I toss those in too) and I "flavor" the pot with the onion, garlic and "stock" (sometimes homemade, sometimes bouillon) the recipe calls for. Approximately 1/2 hour before serving, I sautee the meats in just a little butter and, when cooked, I incorporate them (and their "grease") into the soup and then "warm it". Some of the time, I add some sort of dairy (heavy cream, 1/2-and-1/2, milk, evaporated milk) but a lot of the time I don't. And (trust me) it's just as good without it. I ALWAYS add CHEESE -- sometimes Parmesan, sometimes Provolone, sometimes Cheddar, American or Swiss. Salt, pepper (black, white and cayenne) are staples on our table. Who wants, adds; who doesn't want, doesn't add. In brief, this is a SIMPLE, DELICIOUS, NUTRITIOUS and ECONOMICAL meal -- even when you "improvise".
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Cindy's Tuna, Spinach, and Bacon Quiche

Reviewed: Dec. 27, 2008
This is a WONDERFUL base recipe, and so versatile. I make it (for myself, for lunch) at least once a week. I bake it "crustless" in a pyrex pie plate (which I "grease" with Olive Oil) because I don't particularly care for "prepared" pie crusts. I like it with Blue Cheese Dressing, but Ranch works nicely, too. I LOVE the Tuna/Spinach/Bacon mix, but (pre-cooked) boneless chicken breast (instead of tuna) works well, too. I LOVE Swiss chees, but sometimes I use Provolone, Velveeta or Pepperjack. Sometimes I include chopped onions, scallions, fresh mushrooms and/or bell peppers. One "pie" lasts me 2 or 3 days. Sometimes I make toast, sometimes I have Saltine or Ritz Crackers with it. Regardless, it's ALWAYS good.
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Good Old Fashioned Pancakes

Reviewed: Dec. 23, 2008
This is a very good recipe for "good old fashioned pancakes" and so incredibly close to how my Grandmother taught my Mother to make them and how my Mother, in turn, taught me. Of course, "variations on the theme" can be made/incorporated (and are oftentimes welcomed by family and friends), but my reason for posting is to add a couple of "tips" that have worked for me on more than one occasion, so here goes (hope I've helped): (a) Don't have a sifter? Can't find it right this second? Don't know what sifting means? Just let your mixed batter SIT ("breathe") for 1/2 hour or so then sir it again (preferably with a WOODEN spoon) before grilling/frying. Fluffy, fluffy, fluffy! (b) want thinner pancakes (perhaps for crepes)? Add another egg and perhaps another couple of Ts. milk. Set aside for no less than 1/2 hour (but 3/4 - 1 hour may be better, depending on your altitude) -- once again, allowing your batter to "breathe" -- before grilling/frying. Light. Thin. Delicious! (c) I always use "salted" butter when making my pancakes so I never include salt in my batter. I'll leave your choice of "shortening" up to you, but bear in mind that results may vary on account of it. Just my thouhgts.
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Noodle Pudding

Reviewed: Nov. 25, 2008
A wonderful recipe. I followed the recipe as written except that I used Angel Hair pasta (which I broke up into at least 1/3 pieces) because that's what I had) and it turned out great. A very nice offering when you're in a pinch. (I've only made this once so far, so I'm not sure, but I'm thinking that next time I make this, I'll omit the sugar and incorporate some thinly sliced onions as well as some shredded carrots and zucchini -- perhaps even some bell pepper slices, mushrooms (?) and sliced sausage -- and serve it either as a side dish or as a main meal, even. Smothered with cheese(s)? Sounds even better. JMTs
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Spinach and Carrot Quiche

Reviewed: Nov. 25, 2008
This is a KEEPER. I made this "crustless" by using pre-coooked white rice (1/8th cup per desired servings) instead of the pie crusts and tossed some parmesan cheese (n addition to the Jack) into the mixture (just what I do). I also used 4 eggs -- rather than 3 -- for every 8 portions I prepared. I served this (along side of other dishes) at my "faux Thanksgiving dinner" this past weekend. I don't know exactly who DEVOURED it (might have been "all of them"), but I can tell you that at the end of our "faux T-day dinner" there were NO leftovers of this particular offering. Enjoy!
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Easy Sausage Stuffing

Reviewed: Nov. 25, 2008
This recipe worked for me. Specifically because I used Bob Evans' Savory Sage Sausage, I saw no need to use any sort of "herbed" stuffing package; therefore, I used my own 2 day old "stale" and toasted bread (I think I used Wonder White; I may have used store brand "sandwich", though) and tossed in "some" (perhaps 1/2-3/4 T.?) Italian Seasoning (garlic, basil, oregano, parsley, cayenne, etc.). I use bouillon cubes rather than packaged stock (always have; always will). Given this recipe, BEEF cubes -- even though I was serving it along side of our "trial run" Thanksgiving Day Turkey (ratio: 1-1/2 cubes per 1 cup of water). I think the butter in this recipe can be reduced (at least by 1/3 - 1/2). But my family (6 adults at most given meals) gobbled it up as served.
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Succotash

Reviewed: Nov. 25, 2008
This was VERY good. I made it this past weekend to see whether or not I wanted to include it in my Thanksgiving dinner offerings this year. Decision: YES! I used frozen Baby Limas, frozen Niblets corn and fresh tomatoes. I did not include garlic as others suggested (at least not this time; too many "flavors" in T-day already) but I probably will next time (and there WILL be a next time). I think the tomatoes make the dish. Opinion? Don't even think about leaving them out.
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Slow Cooker Chicken Stroganoff

Reviewed: Nov. 15, 2008
This was really quite good. The Italian dressing adds a LOT. I TRIPLED the recipe using the meat from chickens I had cooked (boiled) previously rather than the chicken breasts. Also, I NEVER use condensed soups in recipes so what I did instead was toss 3 celery ribs (chopped) and 3 T. of butter into the crockpot along with 3 chicken bouillon cubes, "some" dried parsley (probably about 3 T.) and 3/4 cup of water at the onset. When I added the cream cheese (2 12 oz "blocks") I also added 1/2 lb. container of (fresh) sliced mushrooms, approx. 2 T. Cornstarch and 1 cup of milk (Half&Half would work well, too). Upon serving (over 2 pkgs. BROAD PD egg noodles, cooked separately), I made salt, black and cayenne pepper, paprika and sour cream available for "takers". We are 6 pretty "averaged size" adults -- but when dinner was over and I set the leftovers down for my dogs, both of them looked up at me with kind of an "is that all that's left?" expression on their faces. [I gave this a 4 on account of the changes I made, but given my changes, I'd rate it a 10+ and a definite keeper.]
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Creamed Cabbage Soup

Reviewed: Nov. 9, 2008
I make Cabbage Soup for my adult family (myself, DH, 2 sons, daughter, son-in-law and Angelica on the way) fairly often and it's always a hit. This version is particularly good and even better if left to "sit" for an hour or two before serving. I would recommend chopping the celery and onion particularly thin/small and making sure that the carrots are no larger than "bite-sized." If you need to "stretch" it (as I often do), serving it over white rice works well as does adding a can or two of white or pink beans before adding the cream or milk (sometimes I omit these all together and simply throw in a large can of diced tomatoes or tomato sauce). Other great additions include green beans and mushrooms. Finally, this works very well meatless or with ground beef, turkey or chicken or smoked turkey sausage or kielbasa, too. Adaptable, economical and delicious. Who could ask for more?
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Creamy Carrot Soup

Reviewed: Oct. 6, 2008
Oh, my goodness! This soup is DELICIOUS! I used "crystallized" ginger instead of powdered, bouillon cubes instead of broth, fresh basil instead of Rosemary (didn't have any) and 2% Evaporated Milk instead of Heavy Cream (which would have been my preference, but we're trying to "diet"). I also topped each bowl with some crusty bread and a thick slice of PepperJack cheese (any "hard" cheese would work equally well). We're a family of 5, and there wasn't a drop left. NOTE: next time I make it (and there WILL be a "next time"), I think I'll include some sliced up turkey sausage or kielbasa and serve it over pre-cooked rice or barley. What a meal THAT will be!
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Old World Escarole and Beans

Reviewed: Oct. 4, 2008
My grandmother used to make this (using any kind of pork she happened to have on hand, or meatless) all of the time and -- specifically because escarole is too bitter for my taste -- I never liked it and have always "adapted" her recipe by substituting spinach for it. But my husband likes escarole (he orders it every time we go to dinner at a local Italian restaurant), so the other day when escarole was on sale for $0.79 per pound and a bag of spinach was selling for $2.99, I thought I'd give him a thrill. I par-cooked 3 boneless pork chops (instead of the bacon) in a little bit of butter and a splash of olive oil, added a handful of baby carrots and a T. of granulated sugar to my pot and cooked everything together for 45 minutes. My husband loved it, and promised that if I would make this for him at least "sometimes", he'd never ever again spend $6.95 for a bowl of escarole soup (sounds like a plan). As for me? I still don't like escarole, but prepared this way, I had to begrudgingly admit that it was at least "quite edible".
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