Monday | October 23, 2017
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Let’s Talk Food: Best of the best from Texas cookbook

My friend Rosemary went to San Antonio, Texas, to visit her grandchildren and she brought me back “Best of the Best from TEXAS Cookbook.”

Cookbooks and food magazines are my preferred bedtime reading. I read a cookbook cover to cover and usually find interesting recipes. But there are some things like Roundup Rattlesnake, with Sweetwater rattler as the main ingredient, that I don’t think I will ever be making, not in Hilo! Of course, there are chicken fried steak with milk gravy and hot cheese grits recipes that are a standard in Texas.

Hot Cheese Grits

“Texas Historic Inns Cookbook”

(Lamplighter Inn,

Floydada, Texas)

Serves 30

“You simply cannot find a more Southern dish than grits. Those Yankees who come South turn up their noses at one of the best foods that ever originated in America. What would a slice of tender fried ham be without grits and redeye gravy? Some prefer grits with their breakfast egg, because Mother always served them that way. And there is nothing better than a bowl of grits with melted butter and a touch of salt to start the day. There is quite an art to cooking grits so they aren’t too watery and certainly not lumpy. The exact consistency may take a few practice cookings, but once you get the knack, you’ll “kiss My Grits!”

Bring to boil in a large pot:

8 cups water

Slowly add to boiling water:

2 cups quick grits

Turn off heat. Add:

1 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 sticks butter

8 ounces Kraft hot jalapeno cheese

16 ounces Kraft garlic cheese (I wonder if KTA Super Store has this?)

Cool mixture.


2 eggs, beaten

2 tablespoons sherry

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce

2 (12 ounce) cans green chilies, chopped

Spoon mixture into greased baking dish and bake for one hour at 300 degrees.

Note: This freezes well. Water will appear on top but just remix and reheat. Superb with ham or chicken.


I thought of David, who has a couple of wonderful avocado trees and brings to Rotary meetings:

Avocado Logs

“Of Magnolia and

Mesquite Cookbook”

Yields 2 logs

Combine all ingredients and mix well:

1 cup mashed avocado

1 1/2 cups dry-roasted cashew nuts, chopped

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup Sharp cheddar cheese, grated

2 teaspoons lime juice

1 garlic clove, crushed and minced

1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon salt

Dash hot sauce (Tabasco)

Cover mixture with plastic wrap, refrigerate for 30 minutes, until mixture is firm. Divide in half, shape each into a roll. Sprinkle waxed paper with:


Turn roll to cover paprika.

Wrap each roll in foil an d refrigerate until ready to serve. Slice and serve with crackers.


Here is a cabbage soup that may have been a fad in the past. People claim to have lost weight with a cabbage soup diet.

“You can eat all you want because it is made with ‘free vegetable.’ Curb you appetite by eating this during the day if dining out at night. Remember it takes more calories to digest than the soup contains; therefore negative calories. So the more you eat, the more you lose!”

Reducing Soup


International Cooks

Makes 1 1/2 gallon

Using a 2 gallon stock or soup pot, mix together:

2 quarts water

1 head shredded cabbage

4 large onions, chopped

5 ribs celery, chopped

1 large bell pepper, chopped

4 garlic cloves, pressed

1 package dry onion soul mix

1 fifth Bloody Mary mix

2 can beef broth

1 can chicken broth

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Bring to boil and simmer to for 15 minutes.


2 zucchini, diced

2 yellow squash, diced

1 cup broccoli florets

Bring to boil, simmer until vegetables are softened.


Texas is known for their large pecans and Texans would say their pecans are better than any other region in the United States. Ask any Texan and they will tell you that.

Here’s an easy pecan log recipe using ready- made frosting mix and caramels:

Pecan Log

“The Dallas Pecan Cookbook”

Yields 64 slices


3 tablespoons butter, melted

4 tablespoons milk

Stir in:

1 (15 1/2 ounce) package creamy white frosting mix

Mix until well blended. Form into two 8-by-1 1/2 logs. Wrap each in foil and chill for 2 hours.

Melt over low setting:

28 vanilla caramels (8 ounces)

2 tablespoons milk

Spread melted caramel on top and sides of the chilled rolls, reserving 1/4 of the mixture. Sprinkle on two sheets of foil:

1 cup pecans, chopped

Coat logs evenly with pecans and reshape as needed.

Wrap each log, seal and chill before serving.

When ready to serve, remove from refrigerator and let stand about 30 minutes, then slice into 1/4-inch pieces.

Foodie Bites

The Hawaii Community College’s Bamboo Hale is featuring the foods of Peru this week through Friday. Call 934-2591 for reservations starting at 11 a.m.

Tickets are available for the Rotary Club of South Hilo’s 10th Annual Hilo Huli on Sunday, May 4, at Coconut Island. Get them from any member of the club and at Most Irresistible Shop in downtown Hilo.

Please feel free to email me at if you have a question. Bon appetit until next week.


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