2010 Holiday Recipe Contest Winner

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Congratulations to Kathleen Ciminelli with her delicious "Heath Bar Cake"! We had so many wonderful recipes sent in. It was really difficult to choose but here is a taste of some of the best!

Heath Bar Cake
1 box Duncan Hines angle food cake
1 1/2 cup cold coffee (instead of water)
1 pint heavy whipping cream
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3-4 heath candy bars

Mix cake and bake as on box but use coffee instead of water. Cut cake into 3 layers when cool. Whip together Cream, sugar and vanilla. Chop heath bars and add to cream. Spread between layers and frost. Refrigerate at least 4 hours uncovered before serving.

Ellen's Potato Knishes OMG!!!!!!
2 packages of refrigerator biscuits (10 in a package)
3 medium peeled potatoes
2 chopped onions
4 cloves of garlic
2 tablespoons oil-either canola or olive
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup milk
1 egg yolk mixed with a small amount of water

Saute the onions in oil and butter until soft and lightly browned and add the garlic. Cook the potatoes in salted water until soft. Smash the potatoes with 1/4 cup of milk. Add the sauteed onion and season to taste with salt, pepper and paprika. Separate and roll out the 20 biscuits. Place 1 heaping teaspoon of the potato filling in the center of each biscuit. Roll each biscuit like a jelly roll, spreading the mixture through the knish. Pinch each side of the knish to keep the filling inside. Place each knish on a cookie sheet which has been lined with parchment paper. Brush with egg yoke and water mixture. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until brown. Knishes are ready to eat!!!!
This freezes beautifully as each roll can be cut in half before thawed

Ellen's To Die For Potato Pancakes (Latkes)
5 pound bag of Yukon gold potatoes
1 1/2 to 2 large grated sweet onions
4 large eggs
Salt and pepper
Canola oil

Cube and grate un-peeled potatoes in batches in food processor with regular blade. Place grated potatoes and onions in a colander over a large bowl press the potatoes allowing the water to drain out into the bowl. Potato starch will form under the water at the bottom of the bowl. Place the drained potatoes and onion mixture into a large bowl. Beat the 4 eggs and add to the potato mixture. Season with salt and pepper. Pour out the water from the drained potato mixture. Add the thick potato starch to the potato batter. (READY TO FRY) Pour oil into large frying pan about half way up. Make sure the oil is very hot. Add heaping tablespoons of the batter into the oil to form the potato pancakes turn pancake over using a fork after they get crispy and fry on the other side. After the pancakes are finished frying on both sides put on a tray lined with paper towels. SERVE AND ENJOY!!!!


Preheat oven to 350*. Grate cheddar into large mixing bowl and combine well with softened butter. Add egg yolk, flour, salt and cayenne and combine well. Stir in pecans. Divide dough into two parts and roll each into a log on a floured surface. Wrap each log in plastic and chill for at least 1 hour - can be frozen at this point for later use if desired. Slice a chilled log into thin rounds and place on a foil-lined baking sheet greased with baking spray. Bake 12-15 minutes until lightly browned and crisp on the edges. Let cool completely and remove from baking sheet with a spatula. Serve at room temperature.

Dough: 1/2 lb. margarine (softened)
1 1/2 cups sifted flour
3 T. sour cream
1 egg plus 1 egg yolk

Mix ingredients together, make into small balls about the size of a walnut. Put on greased plate and refrigerate overnight.
1 lb. of English walnuts ground fine
1 cup sugar
2 or 3 whole eggs ( filling should stick together but neither be too dry or too runny so you may not need third egg)

Roll out one ball on heavily floured counter to size of a small rectangle (letter). Put a small tsp of filling in center. Pull up long sides to center, pressing together slightly, then roll up each small side to as close as you can to filling. Pat down. Bake on cookie sheet with parchment paper on it at 375* for about 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned. Watch carefully. Remove from sheet and let cool on rack. Then sprinkle with sifted confectioner's sugar. Makes anywhere from 12-24 depending on the size of your dough ball. Note: This is a recipe that has been in my family for three generations and can be adapted to any holiday. They are simply filled cookies: Valentine Love Letters, New Year's Pillows, etc.

Crab Bisque Recipe
Serves 4
Stock ingredients:
4-6 cups crab shells
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 large yellow onion, sliced or chopped
1 carrot, roughly sliced or chopped
1 celery stalk, roughly sliced or chopped
2 Tbsp tomato paste
2 sprigs of thyme
Several sprigs parsley
1 bay leaf
10-15 whole peppercorns
2 teaspoons salt
Soup ingredients:
2 Tbsp butter, unsalted
1/3 cup shallots, chopped
3/4 cup dry white wine
4 cups stock
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 1/4 lb. or more of cooked crabmeat
1 1/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Put shells in a large stock pot and cover with an inch (but no more than an inch) of water. Put the stove temperature on medium high and slowly heat the shells in the water. As the bubbles come up to the surface a film of foam will develop on the surface. Spoon to skim away this foam. Let the shells cook like this for about an hour; skim the foam every few minutes. The foam comes from shells releasing impurities as their temperature increases. Put the thyme, bay leaves, and parsley in cheese cloth. Secure with kitchen string. Once the stock has stopped releasing foam, you can add the wine, onions, carrots, celery, tomato paste, herbs and peppercorns. Bring to a low simmer and reduce heat so that the stock continues to simmer, but not boil, for 30 minutes. If more foam comes to the surface, skim it off. Add salt and remove from heat. Pour the stock into the strainer. Makes 2-3 quarts. Reserve 4 cups for the crab bisque, refrigerate or freeze the rest.

Now on to the bisque... In a large, 4 or 6 quart saucepan, melt butter on medium heat, add the shallots and cook gently until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the wine, stock, and tomato paste. Raise the heat and bring to a simmer; reduce heat to continue to simmer until rice is completely cooked, about 25 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for several minutes. Add about two thirds of the crab meat to the soup. Working in batches, ladle the soup into a blender and puree until completely smooth. Return pureed soup back to soup pan. Add cream and gently heat soup until it is hot enough for serving. Add the remaining one third of the crab meat. Add salt and cayenne pepper to taste.

Baked Ziti
1 (16 ounce) package dry ziti pasta
1 pound lean ground beef
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 (15 ounce) cans tomato sauce
12 ounces brown gravy
1/2 cup half-and-half
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

In a large frying pan, cook and stir ground beef until brown. Add garlic, tomato sauce, gravy, cream, Parmesan cheese, oregano and basil. Simmer for 30 minutes. Cook pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water until al dente. Drain. Combine the cooked ziti and the sauce, and spread into a greased 9x13 baking dish. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes, until bubbly.

1 package yellow cake mix
1 (16 oz) can solid pack pumpkin
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup melted butter
whipped topping

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease bottom of 13x9 pan. Combine pumpkin, evaporated milk, eggs, sugar, pumpkin pie spice, and salt in large bowl. Pour into pan. Sprinkle dry cake mix evenly over pumpkin mixture. Top with pecans. Drizzle with melted butter. Bake for 50-55 minutes or until golden. Cool completely and serve with whipped topping. Refrigerate leftovers, if you have any...it's PUMPDILI-ICIOUS!!

1 refrigerated pie crust (I use the rolled ones and put into my pie pan)
cup mayonnaise
cup milk
1 tbsp. corn starch
2 eggs
1 tsp greek seasoning
cup goat cheese
1 cup shredded Mexican style cheese
1 bunch asparagus - steamed
cup (more or less is ok too) chopped sundried tomatoes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix mayonnaise, milk, cornstarch and eggs in large bowl. Add greek seasoning, both cheeses and steamed asparagus. Pour into unbaked pie crust. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 30 minutes or until lightly golden. You can substitute the asparagus and cheeses for sausage and cheddar cheese, or spinach and feta.