See what’s cooking: Holiday recipes from faculty and staff

Holiday cookiesFor the fifth year, SMU Forum is featuring holiday recipes from all over campus, and the world. Make sure your favorite is among them! We’re looking for side dishes, main courses, desserts, sweets, food gifts, game-day snacks, kosher and ethnic treats, vegetarian recipes…you name it. Post your recipes to the comments section, or send them to Kathleen Tibbetts, 214-768-7672.

Meanwhile, get started with the following classics from previous years’ comments and this year’s e-mail. Find them below the link.

The holidays provide countless opportunities to share favorite dishes with family and friends. Whether you’re cooking dinner for 30 or bringing a treat to a party, these recipes from SMU staff and faculty members are sure to please.

To add your own recipe, post it in a new comment below.

Submitted by Cherri Gann, News and Communications:

Microwave Peanut Patties

2 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup light corn syrup
2 to 2-1/2 cups raw Spanish peanuts
2 tbsp. stick butter (not margarine)
1 tsp. vanilla
10-12 drops red food color

Combine sugar, water, salt and syrup in 2-quart glass bowl. Set microwave timer for 20 minutes and cook on high. After about 5 minutes, start to watch bowl. When mixture starts to boil, let cook for 3 more minutes. (This may take less than 20 minutes, depending on your microwave.) Use potholders to remove VERY hot bowl from microwave. Stir the mixture. Add peanuts and stir to coat. Cook on high for 7-9 minutes more; carefully remove.

Stir in butter, vanilla and color until well mixed. Cool mixture in bowl for approximately 20-25 minutes. Stir vigorously with wooden spoon until mixture looks opaque and creamy, but still shiny. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto waxed paper or greased cookie sheet. (Mixture will still be hot.) Cool until set. Makes about 2 dozen 2-inch patties.

Submitted by Terri Gwinn, Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility:

I am from a Portuguese family. On Christmas morning we always had two Portuguese favorites, pickled pork and sweet bread (tastes like King’s Hawaiian bread).

Portuguese Pickled Pork

1 boneless pork loin roast (3-4 lbs.), cut into cubes or thick slices
1 cup water
1 cup apple cider vinegar
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 cup pickling spices
1 tbsp. crushed red pepper

Mix all ingredients together in large glass bowl and marinate, covered with plastic wrap, for two or three days. Be sure to stir it once every day as it marinates.

Remove pork from marinade and roast in a 350-degree preheated oven until internal temperature reaches 170 degrees. Makes 6-8 servings. Serve with scrambled eggs and sweet bread.

The recipe for sweet bread can be found at Warning – it is not easy to make and the recipe is long.

Submitted by Sarah Hanan, News and Communications:

Christmas Morning Crockpot Oatmeal

2 cups milk
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp. butter, melted
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 cup quick cooking oats
1 cup finely chopped apple
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or almonds

Grease the inside of crockpot. Put ingredients inside crockpot and mix well. Cover and turn on low heat. Cook overnight or 8-9 hours. Stir before serving. Makes 4 cups (4 servings).

Submitted by Kathy Hargrove, Annette Caldwell Simmons School of Education and Human Development:

Roasted Vegetables with Blue Cheese and Walnuts

Select any mixture of vegetables from the list below. The only required vegetable is butternut squash!

Butternut squash
Whole carrots (better than small snack-sized ones)
Assorted peppers – red, orange, yellow, and green
Onions (thick slices)
Leeks (I use as a foundation for the dish)
Garlic cloves
Olive oil
(Feel free to add other vegetables if you like.)

1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
Thyme to taste (fresh or dried)
1 cup blue cheese, crumbled
1 cup chopped walnuts

Cut the vegetables into chunks or slices (eggplant and onions). If you use a small squash, there is no need to pare it – skin will be tender.

Put in a large plastic zip bag and add olive oil. The amount will depend on the quantity of veggies. You want each one to be coated. Arrange in a large roasting pan, onion slices on top and leeks on bottom. Add garlic cloves to taste.

Cover and roast at 350 F until vegetables are almost tender (about an hour), then uncover and sprinkle with balsamic vinegar (again, amount depends on vegetables, but for a big pan, I use about 1/3 cup). Raise oven temperature to 400 F and brown the vegetables. Watch so that nothing burns.

Remove from oven and sprinkle generously with fresh thyme. You can use dried if fresh is not available. Sprinkle with about 1 cup of blue cheese and 1 cup chopped walnuts. Delicious!

Submitted by Sharon Gambulos, University Development:


1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 can condensed milk
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1-1/2 sticks butter, cut in small pieces
Dash of salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. almond extract
2 cups chopped pecans

Add first 6 ingredients in large saucepan; cook on medium heat to thread stage (use a candy thermometer). Stir during the cooking process.

Remove from heat; add extracts and pecans. Stir until mixture begins to thicken. Working quickly, drop spoonfuls of mixture onto greased wax paper. Let pralines sit out several hours; even overnight to set completely. Keep in airtight container.

About Kathleen Tibbetts

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2 Responses to See what’s cooking: Holiday recipes from faculty and staff

  1. Kathleen Tibbetts says:

    A whole raft of holiday recipes from the SMU Alumni Giving and Relations Team:

    “Perfectly Chocolate” Chocolate Cake
    Submitted by Stacey Paddock

    2 cups sugar
    1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
    3/4 cup cocoa
    1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
    1-1/2 tsp. baking soda
    1 tsp. salt
    2 eggs
    1 cup milk
    1/2 cup vegetable oil
    2 tsp. vanilla extract
    1 cup boiling water
    “Perfectly Chocolate” Chocolate Frosting (recipe follows)

    Heat oven to 350 F. Grease and flour two 9-inch round baking pans. Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla; beat on medium speed of mixer 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans.

    Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Cool completely. Frost with “Perfectly Chocolate” Chocolate Frosting. 10-12 servings.

    “Perfectly Chocolate” Chocolate Frosting

    1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine
    2/3 cup cocoa
    3 cups powdered sugar
    1/3 cup milk
    1 tsp. vanilla extract

    Melt butter. Stir in cocoa. Alternately add powdered sugar and milk, beating to spreading consistency. Add small amount of additional milk, if needed. Stir in vanilla. About 2 cups frosting.


    Nana’s Salmon Cakes
    Submitted by Mindy Rowland

    1 can quality salmon
    1-1/2 cups cooked rice
    2 eggs
    3 cups Ritz crackers, crushed (reserve 1-1/2 cups to roll cakes)

    Mix all ingredients except reserved cracker crumbs and shape into ovals. Press firmly to keep their shape.

    Heat 1/4 cup of vegetable oil. Roll cakes in reserved cracker crumbs. Fry until done.


    Submitted by Amanda Pritchard

    3 medium yellow squash, sliced, boiled and drained
    2 eggs
    1/2 tsp. pepper
    1 tsp. salt
    1/4 butter
    1 cup grated cheddar cheese
    1 cup mashed saltine crackers
    1 cup milk
    1 cup onion
    1 small green bell pepper, diced
    3 jalapenos, diced (optional)

    Mix all ingredients together. Pour into casserole dish. Sprinkle bread crumbs or cracker crumbs on top. Bake uncovered at 350 F for one hour.


    Mango Salsa Dip
    Submitted by Holly Myers

    2 cans corn
    2 cans black beans
    3 tomatoes, chopped
    2 avocado, chopped
    1 can chopped green chiles
    2 mangos, chopped
    Juice of 1 lime
    Salt and pepper to taste

    Mix all ingredients in a big bowl, and enjoy with chips!


    Oreo Snowballs
    Submitted by Lyndsey Hill

    8 oz. softened cream cheese or whipped cream cheese
    18 oz. package Oreo cookies, crushed
    2 cups white chocolate chips

    Mix cream cheese with electric mixer until fluffy (also works in a food processor). Add Oreos and mix until well blended. Chill for several hours. Roll the chilled mix into one-inch balls.

    Melt the white chocolate using a double boiler. Dip the balls completely into the melted chocolate; place on wax paper. Cover with white, silver, or clear sprinkles. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve. Makes 3-4 dozen (depending on the size).


    Holiday Pretzel Treats
    Submitted by Allison Curran

    Bite-size waffle-shaped pretzels
    Hershey’s Hugs candy kisses
    M&M’s candies (red and green!)

    Heat the oven to 170 F. Set a number of bite-size, waffle-shaped pretzels (one for each treat) in a single layer on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, then top each pretzel with an unwrapped Hershey’s Hug. Bake for 4 to 6 minutes (the white chocolate will melt more quickly), until the chocolates feel soft when touched with a wooden spoon. Remove the cookie sheet from the oven and quickly press an M&M’s candy into the center of each kiss.

    Allow the treats to cool for a few minutes, then place them in the refrigerator to set, about 10 minutes.


    Baked Potato Soup
    Submitted by Shea Furlong

    3-4 baking potatoes (2.5 lbs)
    2/3 cup flour
    6 cups 2% milk
    1 cup sharp cheddar, shredded
    1 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp pepper
    1 cup sour cream
    3/4 cup green onion, finely chopped
    Bacon (optional)

    Preheat oven to 400 F. Pierce potatoes with a fork several times; bake for one hour until tender. Cool, peel (discard skins) and coarsely mash.

    Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup. Place in a large soup pot or dutch oven. Gradually add milk, stirring with a whisk until blended. Cook over medium heat until thick (about 8-10 minutes). Add potatoes, 3/4 cup cheese, salt and pepper. Stir until cheese is melted. Remove from heat. Stir in sour cream and 1/2 cup onions. Cook over low heat for 10 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Do not allow it to boil. Serve with cheese, onion and bacon sprinkled on top.


    Baked Artichoke Dip
    Submitted by Julie Griffith

    4 oz. cream cheese
    10 mixed Greek olives, pitted and chopped
    10 marinated artichoke quarters, chopped
    10 cloves roasted garlic, chopped
    3 oz. fresh goat cheese
    2 oz. grated asiago cheese

    Preheat oven to 500 F or broiler to 375 F. Mix all ingredients, except asiago, together and place in a ovenproof dish. Sprinkle the asiago over the dip. Place in oven or broiler until brown on top. Serve with crostini and red wine.


    Angel Hair Pasta Salad
    Submitted by Julie Griffith

    16 oz. angel hair pasta, cooked, rinsed and drained
    1 tbsp. Accent
    1 tbsp. Lawry’s seasoned salt
    3 tbsp. lemon juice
    4 tbsp. vegetable or canola oil

    1 jar diced pimento
    3/4 cup chopped onion
    1 can chopped ripe olives
    2 cup diced celery
    1 cup chopped green pepper
    1/2 cup mayonnaise

    Combine cooked pasta with next 4 ingredients; marinate overnight in refrigerator. Add remaining ingredients. Let stand in refrigerator several hours before serving. Add chicken, shrimp or crab if desired.


    Jennifer’s Poppyseed Chicken
    Submitted by Andrew Snow

    1 roast chicken, shredded
    8 oz. sour cream
    1 can cream of chicken soup
    2 tbsp. poppyseeds
    1 sleeve Ritz crackers
    2-4 tbsp. butter, melted

    Preheat oven to 375 F. Stir together sour cream, cream of chicken soup and poppyseeds in a large bowl. Add shredded chicken, and pour into a lightly greased casserole dish. Crush Ritz crackers in sleeve, and mix with melted butter in small bowl. Sprinkle the crackers over the chicken mixture. Bake at 375 F for about 45 minutes.


    Steamed Pudding with Golden Syrup
    Submitted by Lindsey Graham

    8 tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter
    4 oz. superfine sugar
    2 eggs
    2 tsp. vanilla extract (optional)
    1 cup self-rising flour, sifted *
    1-2 tbsp. milk
    4 tbsp. golden syrup

    Butter a 3/4-quart or 1-quart cake or pudding mold. Cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Gradually beat in the eggs and vanilla. Fold in the flour and enough milk to make a loose, dropping batter.

    Pour golden syrup into the bottom of the mold. Pour batter into the mold and secure the top with wax paper and foil, pleated to allow room for the sponge to rise. Steam for 1-1/2 to 2 hours. Turn out onto plate and serve hot with crème anglaise.

    * Make your own self-rising flour by adding 1 tsp. baking powder and 1/2 tsp. salt for each 1 cup of flour.

  2. Kathleen Tibbetts says:

    A new recipe from Misty Solt, director of the Center for Family Counseling at SMU-in-Plano:

    No-Bake Cheesecake

    1 package lemon flavored gelatin (small)
    1 cup boiling water
    3 tbsp. lemon juice (or 1 tsp. of lemon flavor)
    1 8 oz package cream cheese
    1 cup sugar
    1 tsp. vanilla
    2 packs graham crackers
    1/2 cup butter, melted
    1 can Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk, chilled

    Dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Add lemon juice or flavor and let cool. Cream together cheese, sugar and vanilla. Add gelatin and mix well.

    Whip chilled condensed milk until light and fluffy and add to gelatin/cream cheese mixture. Mix with spoon.

    In a separate bowl, crush graham crackers and add melted butter. Put 2/3 of the mixture on the bottom of a 9 x 13 x 2″ pan and pack firm. Add filling mixture and sprinkle the remaining 1/3 graham cracker crumb mixture on top. Chill for 2-3 hours.

    Preparation time: 15 minutes. Chill time: 2-3 hours. Feeds 12. 1/12 cake = 379 calories.

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