Cooks' Exchange: Sharing September's delicious leftovers

Cooks' Exchange: Sharing September's delicious leftovers


September has suddenly become a month of leftovers, not in Styrofoam packages filling refrigerator shelves, but instead leftover recipes patiently awaiting space in another column.

Featured in the August 21 column was a recipe “Joe” requested for Italian hamburgers to serve many at a picnic or large gathering. Mike Repas responded immediately and suggested the recipe would make an excellent Italian meatloaf. So, if you clipped the recipe from the column you might want to add his suggestion in red ink to remind you sometime in the future .

During the summer months when picnics are in full swing, potato salad recipes suddenly triggered thoughts of visiting favorite well-equipped grocery stores in search of bottled potato salad dressing. After studying vast selections of dressings without success, phone calls were made hoping to discover at least one on the market somewhere but the answer was only “no.” Puzzled as to why there were no bottled potato salad dressings available, the question followed me up north to Burnett County and the small town of Webster, Wisconsin, population 650, where 16 ounce jars of Marzetti’s refrigerated Potato Salad Dressing were available in the produce department at Wayne’s Grocery Store. Needless to say, two jars were immediately purchased and within minutes after returning home, a delicious potato salad was made with microwaved peeled and chopped red skin potatoes.

While in Burnett County, Siren’s annual fundraising Labor Day Weekend Sale was being held along lake park property, which eventually found me in the used book section in search of cookbooks to add to my own collection. I bought two from Publications International, Ltd., one being a 300 page softcover “Treasury of Campbell’s Recipes,” and the other, a 150 page “Meatballs: Favorite Brand Name Recipes.” Unfortunately, discovered later, the person who donated them for the sale had removed 16 pages of recipes from one and 19 pages from another. A request of my own today is letting me know if you happen to have these books in your own collection.

A few months ago recipes arrived for “Dutch Baby” pancakes and here are the final two, this one from Kathy Lampman, Deerfield, having received it from her sister, Bea Lapp, Fish Creek, who found it in a Lutheran cookbook.

Puff pancake

2 eggs

½ cup flour

½ cup milk

2 tablespoons butter

Combine eggs, flour, and milk. Melt butter in a 9-inch glass pie pan in 400 degree oven. Immediately after butter is melted, pour in batter. Place back in the oven for 15-18 minutes. Best served hot with syrup, jam, fruit or cheese.

Judi Page responded with a “Dutch Baby” recipe she has had for 40 years from a Finnish family who referred to it as Krupsu.

Dutch baby

2 eggs

2 cups milk

1 cup flour

Pinch of salt

¼ pound of butter

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Beat eggs well; add milk and mix. Add flour and salt and blend. Melt butter and swirl in an 8x8-inch cake pan until coated well. Pour remaining melted butter into the flour mixture and blend well. Pour batter into prepared pan, bake 40 minutes until golden brown and separates from the sides of the pan. Serves 4

Note: While baking, it will puff up, then settles again when removed from the heat. Serve warm topped with syrup, dusted with powdered sugar, or a favorite jam. This recipe is easily halved, or doubled, and refrigerated leftovers reheat nicely in a microwave.

I just finished talking about tomatoes, juice, and grilling out with Betsy Montzingo whose prolific tomato plants are worth mentioning along with her husband John’s expertise grilling out. Here is a 2005 Gourmet magazine recipe for tomato bread pudding from their Executive Food Editor Zanne Early Stewart that became a mandatory side dish 50 years ago to whatever his father was cooking on the grill at their summer lake house in Michigan.

Tomato bread pudding

5 cups (1-inch) cubes country-style bread (from a loaf), crusts discarded

1 stick (½ cups) unsalted butter, melted

14-ounce can whole tomatoes in juice

2/3 cup water

2/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

1 tablespoon tablespoon tomato paste

¾ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon hot pepper sauce such as Tabasco

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss bread cubes with butter in a 9x13-inch baking dish until coated. Puree tomatoes with juice in a blender 5 seconds, then transfer to a small saucepan along with water, brown sugar, tomato paste, salt, and hot sauce. Bring mixture just to a simmer, then pour over bread, stirring to combine. Bake uncovered, until edges are beginning to caramelize, 35 to 40 minutes.

Serves 6 to 8

Here is another recipe that will treat my macaroni and cheese loving grandson, Nate, when returning home some weekend from UW-La Crosse.

Broccoli mac and cheese casserole

2 cups elbow macaroni, uncooked

¼ cup butter

¼ cup flour

2 cups milk

½ lb. (8 oz.) Velveeta, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

2 cups small fresh broccoli florets, cooked

1 cup Kraft Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese, divided

½ cup french-fried onions

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Cook macaroni as directed on package, omitting salt.

Meanwhile, melt butter in large saucepan on medium heat. Whisk in flour; cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Gradually stir in milk. Bring to boil; cook and stir 3 to 5 minutes or until thickened. Add Velveeta; cook 3 minutes or until melted, stirring frequently. Drain macaroni. Add to Velveeta sauce along with broccoli and ½ cup cheddar; mix well. Spoon into 8-inch square baking dish sprayed with cooking spray; sprinkle with remaining cheddar. Top with onions. Bake 20 minutes or until heated through.

Recently mentioning the LOFT (Lots Of Fun Times) and its manager, the late Ace Karp, brought wonderful responses from readers remembering those special high school days from way back then, one in particular from Glenn Hovde telling me he still has his LOFT card and wondered if I did, too, and yes, I sure do. Also heard from Ace’s sister, Norma, thanking me for mentioning him and telling me how much Ace loved banana cream pie. Here is a recipe in memory of the one and only Ace Karp and the LOFT.

Banana cream pie

1 baked 9-inch pie shell

2/3 cup sugar

3 tablespoons cornstarch

¼ teaspoon salt

3 egg yolk

1 cup evaporated milk

1 cup water

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 ½ cups sliced banana

Whipped cream or whipped topping

Mix sugar, cornstarch, salt and egg yolks together thoroughly in a saucepan. Combine evaporated milk and water; stir into sugar mixture until smooth. Cook over low heat, stirring until thickened, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla, and let cool completely. Arrange bananas in baked pie shell. Cover with cool custard. Spread with whipped cream or whipped topping and refrigerate.

Recipe from “Blue Ribbon Pies: The Most Mouthwatering, Award-Winning Recipes from America’s State, County, and Local Fairs”

Recent request: Salsa verde recipes

Contact the Cooks’ Exchange in care of the Wisconsin State Journal, P.O. Box 8058, Madison, WI, 53708 or by email at

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