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Kitchen Mailbox: Stuffing, ice cream pie recipes marvelous holiday finds

Thursday, November 18, 1999

By Arlene Burnett, Post-Gazette Staff Writer

For the cook, we can sum up the Thanksgiving holiday in one word -- hectic. And with the help of our readers, we've come up with recipes that can be prepared a day in advance so you can enjoy what Thanksgiving day is all about -- time together with family and friends.

If you're looking for a new stuffing recipe, we have one you're going to love. It's Old-Fashioned Herb Bread Stuffing -- and it's delicious. Fresh whole-wheat and white bread are cut into cubes and baked -- these toasted cubes are then combined with carrots, celery and onion that were sautéed in butter. Fresh parsley, sage and thyme add even more flavor. The stuffing is kept moist by the addition of chicken broth.

For dessert we have something unique -- Butterscotch Pecan Pie in Ice Cream Shells. The ice cream shells are simple to make and the filling is just as easy. What can you say about a pie that begins with a smooth ice cream pie shell and a filling made with butterscotch pudding, pecans and whipped cream? Delectable!

Jo Ann Wenzel of Franklin Park, sent us her father's recipe for Blue Cheese Salad Dressing.

Blue Cheese Salad Dressing

4 ounce package of Blue or wedge of Roquefort cheese (we used Blue cheese)
1/2 pint of sour cream (1 cup)

Add the following to taste:
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Tabasco sauce (we used 1/2 teaspoon)
Dry mustard (we used 1/2 teaspoon)
Garlic powder (we used 1/8 teaspoon)

Divide cheese in half, grating or pressing half through a sieve. Blend cheese into sour cream. Add remainder of ingredients, blending thoroughly. Crumble other half of cheese and fold into the dressing. Refrigerate until ready to use.

J. Zinski of Carnegie requested a recipe for a turkey stuffing made with whole-wheat bread and carrots. Here's a recipe sent in by Helen Laminson of Carnegie.

Old-Fashioned Herb Bread Stuffing

1 1-pound loaf each unsliced whole-wheat and white bread, crusts removed, cut into 1-inch cubes (16 cups)
3/4 cup finely chopped Italian parsley
1 tablespoon salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
2 1/2 cups each diced onions, cel- ery and carrots
1 tablespoon each chopped fresh garlic, thyme and sage leaves
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 cups chicken broth

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place bread in 2 shallow roasting pans. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, tossing once or twice until toasted. Transfer to bowl; cool. Toss with parsley and salt.

In large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add onions, celery and carrots; sauté 12 minutes. Add garlic, thyme, sage and pepper; sauté 3 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add to bread mixture with 1/2 cup broth; toss with large spoon (can be made 1 day ahead and refrigerated).

Use enough to loosely stuff a 15- to 18-pound turkey; place remaining stuffing in greased baking dish. Drizzle with remaining 1 cup broth. Cover with foil. Bake in 325-degree oven 35 minutes (while turkey is resting), uncovering after 20 minutes of baking.

Note: May be prepared one day ahead and refrigerated. Do not stuff turkey ahead of cooking time. The USDA's guideline for turkey suggests that stuffing, whether cooked in the turkey or in a separate pan, should be cooked to 165 degrees.

Connie Shaw of Bethel Park requested a pecan pie recipe using butterscotch pudding. Since we recently ran that particular recipe, we thought you might find this pie interesting. Butterscotch Pecan Pie was sent in by Helen Laminson of Carnegie.

Butterscotch Pecan Pie

2 ice cream pie shells (recipe below)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 small box butterscotch pudding and pie filling
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chopped pecans
2 cups heavy cream

Add the brown sugar to the pudding mix. Prepare the pudding as directed on package. Cool; add vanilla. Whip the cream. Add the pecans to the butterscotch mixture, fold in the whipped cream. Pour into two 8-inch ice cream shells or one 9-inch and freeze.

To serve, cut into wedges.

Ice Cream Pie Shells

1 1/2 pints any flavor ice cream (we used vanilla)
2 8-inch pie pans or 1 9-inch pie pan

Cut ice cream into 1/2-inch slices and place on the bottom of pie pan. Cut remaining slices in half and place around the pie pan to form a rim; fill spots where ice cream is needed. With the tip of a spoon, smooth the ice cream crust. Freeze until firm before adding the filling.


Raymond E. Wilson is looking for a recipe for buckwheat cakes that is made the night before using yeast and molasses.

If you want to answer a recipe request from a reader or are looking for a recipe yourself, please write to Kitchen Mailbox, c/o Arlene Burnett, 34 Blvd. of the Allies, Pittsburgh 15222, or e-mail to aburnett@post-gazette.com. Please include a name, neighborhood and a daytime phone number on all correspondence. All recipes are kitchen-tested by the Post-Gazette.

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