German Hallapse

With the holiday season upon us, I thought it might be the season for some traditional  Christmas ethnic recipes. Being of German decent, I’m starting with a German recipe for Hallapse.

1 small head cabbage
1 lb minced beef
1/4 c uncooked rice
1 egg
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 c water
2 Tbsp butter
1 c tomato juice

Lightly grease a casserole dish. Cut cabbage leaves loose at stem and steam for 10 minutes. Mix minced beef, uncooked rice, egg, salt and pepper. Place heaping tablespoonfuls on steamed cabbage leaves. Wrap and place with loose side down in greased casserole dish or roaster. Pour water over and dot with butter. Cook for about 1-1/2 hours. Cover with tomato juice. Continue baking for 1/2 hour.

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Bear Steak

With bear season in full swing, I thought it was time for another bear recipe. Here’s the bear steak recipe you’ve been waiting for.

Marinate your bear steak for 24 hours; wipe dry.

Sauce ingredients:

4 sliced onions
3 Tbsp butter
1 c water
Salt and pepper to taste
1 clove garlic, crushed
3 Tbsp chives
1 tsp prepared mustard
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 dash Worcestershire sauce

Sauté onions in water and butter. Season with salt and pepper. Add remaining ingredients and simmer a few minutes. Broil steak to desired doneness. Plate and pour sauce over steak. Add buttered sautéed mushrooms if desired.

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Squirrel and Gravy

Sitting in my tree stand the other day the silence was broken, and I was jerked back from an unexpected nap, when a young squirrel started barking about 2 feet above my head, giving me holy hell.  For a few minutes I forgot about waiting for a deer to walk under me, but rather thought about how that squirrel would taste in gravy. I even took the time to choose this recipe.

1 squirrel, cut up
2 Tbsp flour
1/8 tsp salt
Dash of pepper

Place squirrel in a 1-1/2 qt pot. Cover with water and cook over low heat for 1-1/2 hours or until tender. Remove squirrel and drain off all but 2 Tbsp of the drippings. Stir in flour, salt and pepper. Add 1 cup of water or milk; place squirrel in gravy and heat.

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Creamed Soup

Like Ole Mother Hubbard who went to the cupboard – instead of getting a bone – you went there for a can of creamed soup. But when you got there, no soup was to be found. What do you do? You make a base (roux) for what ever kind of soup you need. If you need cream of chicken, use chicken stock or chicken broth for half the liquid and add 1/4 tsp of poultry seasoning or sage. If you need cream of tomato, use tomato juice and add a dash of basil, garlic, onion powder, etc. If you need cream of mushroom, celery or chives, sauté 1/4 cup of needed item in butter before adding the flour. I think you get the idea. Use your imagination!

To make 1 can of soup:

3 Tbsp butter or oil
3 Tbsp flour
1/4 tsp salt
Dash of pepper
1-1/4 c of liquid, milk or stock

Melt the butter or heat the oil in a skillet and stir in the flour. Add and stir in the salt, pepper and any other desired spices. Cook over medium heat until everything is thoroughly mixed. Stir constantly while slowly adding the liquid to prevent lumps from forming. Bring to a boil and cook until thick.

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Biscuits -1890 Recipe

I was paging through my grandmother’s recipe book and found this biscuit recipe she had jotted down on a scrap piece of paper and decided to share it with you.

2 c sifted flour
1 tsp salt
3 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 c shortening or oleo
1 egg beaten in 1/2 cup water or milk

Measure 2 heaping tablespoons of the flour and use for flouring board. Put remaining flour in a bowl. Make a hole in the center of flour and into this add salt and baking powder. Add shortening and pour in egg/milk mixture. Use fingertips to gradually mix flour and liquid into a soft dough. Turn onto floured board and pat gently to half-inch thickness. Cut into small size biscuits with cutter. Place on greased pan. Bake at 400 degrees until brown on bottom, around 10 minutes, then place under a preheated broiler for a minute to brown tops.

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Taco Shells

It must have been back in the 90’s at a state vocational conference that Otto Schmidtlap stuck me with one of those fancy taco shell making molds on a handle. The association was having a silent auction, taking written bids, on donated items. I seen Otto go up to the tables, but thought nothing of it, even though he came back with a feces eating grin on his face. Luckily no one threw a second bid on the taco shell maker and I was the lucky recipient, after forking over a $10.00 donation, of the unique item. I still haven’t figured out how to use the contraption but here’s a recipe for making taco shells.

1-1/2 c cold water
1 c all-purpose flour
1/2 c cornmeal
1/4 tsp salt
1 egg

Mix all 5 ingredients together using a hand beater and fry like pancakes. Pour a scant 1/4 cup of dough into a skillet and rotate the skillet to make a nice round ring. After placing your desired toppings (tomatoes, heated ground beef, cheese, lettuce, onions, etc.) onto the shell and wrap it up before eating. You could drape the still warm shell over a small bundt pan, bowl, etc. and let the shell cool to use as a taco shell bowl.

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Maple Bacon Mashed Potatoes

Here’s a recipe for mashed potatoes that will make your friends ask for ‘your’ recipe for the potatoes.

2-1/2 lbs gold potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
3/4 c milk
1/2 c light cream
2 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp maple syrup
4 slices cooked bacon, chopped, plus additional for topping
Salt and pepper to taste
Freshly chopped chives for garnish

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until a fork can easily slip into the center of the potato chunk, about 15 to 20 minutes. While the potatoes are cooking, heat the milk, cream and butter in a small saucepan over low heat until the butter melts. Stir in the maple syrup. Drain the potatoes and return to pot. Using an electric beater, slowly blend the milk mixture into the potatoes until smooth and creamy. Stir in the chopped bacon and season with salt and pepper, to taste. After placing in serving bowl, top with the chopped chives and additional chopped bacon. Serve immediately, refrigerating any leftovers.

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