Friday, June 25, 2010

Recipes of Marie Rush

Marie said she married Ishmael without knowing how to cook. Couldn't even boil water and she taught herself. She said it was a good thing her husband had a cast-iron stomach, 'cause in the beginning he ate a lot of flops.
Fried Apples

(NOTE: The Rush family ate this for any meal, but it was a breakfast delicacy in my family. We always ate it slathered in white crumbled bacon gravy. Yum!)

6 large apples
4 tablespoons bacon grease (fat leftover in pan from frying bacon. Marie had a little crock in her kitchen just for that purpose which she poured the hot grease into. I store mine in a cup and keep it in the fridge door).
¼ cup sugar

Core and slice apples thinly, leave peeling on. Heat grease until melted, then dump apple slices in all at once. Cover & cook until tender, stirring from time to time, doesn't take long. Just before serving, stir in sugar.
Creamed Corn or Peas

1. Drain the water off a can of corn or peas and dump contents into a saucepan if needing this for a quick meal, otherwise, cut sweet corn off the cob with a kitchen knife until you have about 2 cups of corn or remove peas from pea pods, measuring 2 cups. Rinse and drain, put into saucepan.
2. Pour a cup of milk into a clean jar with a one-piece lid (storebought pint jar), add 2 rounded tablespoons of cornstarch into milk, screw on lid and shake to mix. Pour over vegetables and stir.
3. Place saucepan on medium-high heat to cook on stove-top and stir until thickened. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve.
Ishmael's Favorite Cracker Cookies

1 package white almond bark
1 package Ritz crackers
Peanut butter or white marshmellow crème

Make several sandwich cookies of 2 Ritz crackers and peanut butter or marshmellow crème. Melt the white almond bark according to package directions and dip the pre-made sandwich cookies into the gooey candy coating and place on wax paper to dry.
Marie's Directions on How to Roll Out Pie Dough

1. Put a little (handful) flour on rolling surface whether a kitchen table or bread board. She said to give yourself plenty of room with elbow space.
2. Knead dough a little – 8 to 10 times. Not too much she said or crust will be tough.
3. Pat dough into a smooth round circle.
4. Roll rolling pin across the dough in an east to west motion.
5. Lift pin and gently turn dough over, smoothing flour under it, over it, and on pin.
6. Roll dough from middle to outside edges (lift rolling pin at edges of dough and bring it back to middle) in all directions lightly.
7. Roll dough over rolling pin gently and lift into pie pan and spread out.
8. Crease edges & cut off edges to trim.
9. Bake or fill with pie filling.
Custard Pie
(makes an 8-inch pie; 450°F – 15 min.; turn down to 350°F. – 25 min.)

3 eggs
½ cup sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
2 cups scalding hot milk
¾ teaspoon vanilla

Pour into a pastry-lined pie pan. Bake first at 450° F., then turn oven down to 350° F. Bake for the allotted times listed at top of recipe. Bake just until a case knife, inserted 1-inch from side of filling comes out clean. The center may still look a bit soft but will set up eventually. Serve slightly warm or cold.
(NOTE OF CAUTION: If you bake this pie too long, it will make the custard watery.)
Pumpkin Spread

Ishmael grew sugar pumpkins in his garden from which Marie made her pumpkin spread. I've used her cooking method to make mashed pumpkin from a jack-o-lantern pumpkin to be used for pumpkin pie.

1. Peel and seed one large pumpkin, cutting the flesh into 1 to 2 inches chunks. Place chunks into a soup pot or large crock pot, add a cup of water or so and cover. If cooking in a crock pot, cook chunks covered until fork-tender. If in a soup-pot, bake in the oven on 350° F. for an hour (check to see if fork-tender, if not, bake a little longer), or cook on stove-top until soft. Drain water & mash with a potato masher.
2. At this point, if saving for pumpkin pie to make later, place mashed pumpkin in freezer containers, cover, & burp air out. Label and store in freezer. If making pumpkin spread, add sugar, a little at a time, stir in, to taste. Place in freezer containers, cover, burp, & label. Store in freezer. Marie recycled margarine & cool whip containers as freezer containers.
Breaded Tomatoes

2 cups mashed, hot-water peeled tomatoes, fresh from the garden OR
1 can (16 oz.) tomatoes
1/3 cup sugar
3 or 4 slices light bread (homemade or store-bought)
Dash salt.

Cook tomatoes in a saucepan until mushy. Cut up if necessary. Add sugar and stir to dissolve. Put in torn up pieces of light bread and fold in until bread has soaked up juices and is soft. Add dash of salt. Heat through and serve.
Cooked Turnips

1. Wash up turnips if they are fresh from the garden. Cut off tops, root end and thinly peel.
2. Slice turnips (abt. ¼" wide) into a saucepan and cover with water.
3. Bring to a boil and cook at least 10 minutes or until the slices are fork-tender.
4. Remove from heat, pour water off, then cover with fresh water. Return to medium heat, throw in a chunk of butter (abt. 1 tablespoon) and sprinkle with a teaspoon of sugar. Cook until butter is melted. Remove from heat and serve.

She said the first boiling removes the bitterness from the turnips. I've had these many times and they are very good.
Light Bread
(makes 6 loaves; 350° F.; ½ hr. to 1 hr.)
Marie didn't have a written recipe for her homemade bread, so I watched her make it one time when we were "down home" visiting, writing it down, step by step, as she made it. Store-bought bread has nothing on this bread, fresh from the oven, slathered with butter and her homemade pumpkin spread. Mmm! Mmm! Yummy!
1. Mix all these ingredients together in a small metal pan & let raise until bubbly = 1/3 cup barely warm water, 2 to 3 tablespoons of flour, 2 to 3 teaspoons sugar and 2 packages of yeast.
2. Meanwhile, mix next ingredients together in a huge bowl or large clean dishpan with an electric mixer = 6 cups water, ½ cup shortening, lard, or oil, 1 ½ cups sugar, 3 teaspoons salt and 5 to 6 cups whole wheat flour.
3. After this is mixed really well, take a wooden spoon and stir in yeast mixture. With spoon, stir in 1 cup at a time (10 cups white flour), then knead in (in pan) 2 more cups of flour. Knead 5 to 10 minutes (pull dough from edges to center & punch down. Continue this way until dough is smooth.)
4. Roll ball of dough over in pan & cover with a clean cloth. Let raise until double about 2 hours in a warm place. (NOTE: Electric oven directions = preheat on lowest temperature for a few minutes; shut it off. Insert pan. Gas Oven directions = Let raise with just pilot light on or insert a pan of warm water below bread pan on bottom shelf.) To test dough to see if it is double in size = lightly & quickly poke 2 fingers into the dough. If the dents remain, it is doubled in size. If the dent fills up rapidly, then let it rise a little longer.
5. When bread dough is double in size, punch down. Knead on a greased surface about 5 minutes. (Marie used her kitchen table.) Knead with knuckles, pulling outer surfaces to the middle. Cut big mound into hand-sized wedges for 6 loaves. Pat into shape in greased loaf pans.
Cover pans with cloth & let rise again until double (1 ½ to 2 hours) on top of counter. Put pans into a cold oven—then turn oven to 350° F. Bake ½ hr. to 1 hr. until bread is golden brown. Turn bread from pans & butter tops. Let cool.
6. Marie would save the bread sacks from store bought sale bread she occasionally bought and stored her homemade bread in them in the deep freezer.
Fruit Cocktail Cake

1 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 can fruit cocktail
Mix 1 cup brown sugar and 1 cup chopped nut bits together. Spread over top of cake batter.
Bake 50 minutes at 350 degree F. oven.
Poor Man’s Cake Recipe

Wash and boil 1 cup raisins in 2 cups water until there is only 1 cup of water left. Add ½ cup lard. And let cool. Then add 2 cups flour, 1 cup sugar, 1 teaspoon soda, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon nutmeg, 1 teaspoon allspice, and ½ teaspoon salt. Beat well. Bake at 350* oven till it’s done.
Billy's Mock Apple Pie

16 crackers
1 stick butter
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cup water
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
Break each cracker in about 4 pieces in bottom of pie crust. Combine all rest of ingredients in a pan. Heat until margarine melts. Pour this over the crackers and put top crust on pie. Bake until light brown. 

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