Donna McDonald supplied a recipe for alfajores for Evelyn Bogaert gleaned from Company's Company for Christmas cookbook. Thanks also to Kathleen Simard of Stonewall, Vanessa Friesen and Lorna Reschke of Pinawa for taking time to reply.
Now onto recent requests:
Jocelyne Samborski writes, "This will be the first year I do some Christmas baking. I'm looking for recipes for bars, cookies or squares that would be great to have during the holiday season." Please send in tried-and-true recipes.
Elizabeth Yakmission is on the hunt for an old recipe for tea biscuits using 7-Up for the liquid instead of milk or cream. The pop was supposed to make the biscuits lighter and flakier. She also requests a recipe for a loaf made with parsnips.
Gary Yakimoski has lost his recipe for root beer ribs. Can anyone help?
Please send any requests or responses to Recipe Swap, c/o Ilana Simon, Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB R2X 3B6, send a fax to 697-7412 or e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include name, address and daytime telephone number in case any ingredients or directions must be checked.
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup (50 mL) milk
1/2 cup (125 mL) flour
1 1/2 teaspoons (7 mL) salt
1/4 teaspoon (1 mL) pepper
3 tablespoons (45 mL) olive oil
3 tablespoons (45 mL) butter
1 small green pepper, cut into strips
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 lb (250 g) small mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 clove garlic, mashed
1 cup Marsala wine
1 envelope instant chicken broth
1 lemon, cut into 6 thin slices
Flatten chicken pieces between sheets of wax paper with rolling pin or wooden mallet. (Pieces should be 1/4-inch thick.)
Combine egg and milk in a shallow dish. Combine flour, salt and pepper on wax paper. Dip chicken pieces into egg mixture, then into flour mixture, to coat all sides. Repeat to use all the egg and flour mixtures. Refrigerate 2 hours and then proceed to next step.
Heat oil and butter in large skillet. Brown chicken pieces on both sides. Remove to platter.
Sauté green pepper, onion, mushrooms and garlic in skillet until barely tender. Remove to platter.
Add wine and chicken broth to pan; boil, uncovered, 10 minutes to reduce liquid.
Return chicken and vegetables to pan; heat thoroughly. Arrange on serving platter. Top chicken pieces with lemon slices. Serve with buttered noodles, and tossed green salad.
Taste-tester notes: This excellent dish is perfect for serving to company or enjoying with your family. If desired, add another garlic and a small red pepper, also sliced in strips. Also, if you use a nonstick skillet, a total of 2 or 3 tablespoons (25 to 45 mL) of olive oil is plenty and you may omit the butter. The Marsala wine imparts wonderful flavour to the sauce.
300 mL sweetened, condensed milk
1/2 cups (375 mL) butter or hard margarine, softened
3/4 cup (175 mL) granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 egg yolk (large)
1 teaspoon (5 mL) finely grated lemon peel
1 1/4 cup (300 mL) cornstarch
3/4 cup (175 mL) all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon (5 mL) baking powder
1/2 cup (125 mL) fine coconut
Empty milk into 8 inch (20 cm) glass pie plate. Put 1/4 inch (5 mm) hot water into 2 quart (2 L) shallow casserole. Set pie plate in water. Bake at 425ºF (220ºC) for about 1 1/2 hours to caramelize. Set aside caramelized milk.
Cream butter and sugar in medium bowl. Beat in egg and egg yolk.
Add lemon peel, cornstarch, flour and baking powder. Stir.
Work with your hands until dough sticks together. Let dough rest for 15 minutes.
Roll dough a scant 1/4 inch (5 mm) thick on floured surface. Cut into 1 1/2 inch (3.5 cm) circles.
Arrange on greased baking sheet. Bake in 325º F (160º C) oven for 10 to 15 minutes. Cookies should look dry, but not browned. Cool.
Sandwich 2 cookies together with a layer of caramelized condensed milk.
Spread a thin layer of caramelized milk around outside edge of alfajores, and roll edge in coconut.
Makes 30 alfajores.
Taste-tester notes: These tasty cookies are not exactly quick to prepare with the various components, but worth the effort thanks to their great taste and presentation. I found the sweetened condensed milk was caramelized at well under 1 hour of baking time. Check at the 45-minute mark. You want it to be browned and thick, but not burned on top. If desired, add another 1/2 teaspoon (2 mL) of grated lemon peel to give the cookies a more lemony flavour. Check cookies after 12 minutes.