Nesco Honey Baked Cola Ham

Nesco Honey Baked Cola HamRecipes in this Post

Merry Christmas to all! I make a ham on Christmas so I can have Hoppin’ John on New Years day. I also like to make quiche and I found a recipe for soup that I will be posting in a few days.

No one can stand a ham that is all dried out. Thank goodness for the Nesco which keeps your ham nice and moist. I had heard that Coke-a-cola made for a really moist ham, so I decided to try it. Who doesn’t like Honey Baked ham glaze? I wanted to make a glaze with similar properties, and I was able to do that with the help of a little coffee. Yes, coffee!

Nesco Honey Baked Cola Ham YouTube Video


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Apple Streusel Bundt Cake

Apple Streusel Bundt CakeRecipes in this Post

I found this recipe on the back of the Zulka brown sugar bag.  The cake looked great on the package, I happened to have apples in the refrigerator, and I wanted to try something new.

The instructions on how to make the cake on the bag make no sense, therefore, I changed it to the traditional method of creaming the butter and then creaming the butter and sugar together.  Okay, so you don’t know what creaming is?  It’s very simple.  Put room temperature butter into a large bowl, and then beat it with an electric beater until it is nice and smooth.  If you don’t have room temperature butter, you can cut the butter up into small pieces and then cream it.  The best way to beat is with a stand mixer, but a hand mixer will do just fine.  Don’t try this with a whisk, it’s too difficult.

This is a very moist cake, and may take quite a while to bake. The original instructions said 40-55 minutes, mine was in over 80 minutes, your mileage may vary.

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Cream Cheese Cranberry Stuffed Celery

Cream Cheese Cranberry Stuffed Celery
Recipes in this Post

Thanksgiving Day, and I have an extra bunch of celery after making the stuffing, what to do with it? We were having a small dinner party, and I think it’s nice to have a little appetizer with your wine whilst waiting for the big attraction, the turkey.

I wanted to make something that would stick with the theme of the dinner. Usually, I stuff celery with blue cheese and cream cheese, but this time, I wanted something different. Stalk the pantry, and there, in the front, is a bag of dried cranberries. Perfect!

This was a real hit at our gathering. Thankfully, as chef, I made one for myself to taste test. Good thing, because I didn’t get one when I set the tray out – it was gone in minutes. My guests really liked them!

When you make this, please use the hearts of celery. If you cannot get hearts, then at least remove the tough strings. There is nothing more embarrassing than biting into a piece of celery and having strings hanging out of your mouth! Just take a knife, start at either end of the stalk, and pull the strings out. That’s better!

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Easy Puff Pastry Apple Pie

Easy Puff Pastry Apple PieRecipes in this post

It rained today, and it’s a bit chilly, the night before Halloween. Social media is talking about killer clowns coming out in my city, so I’m double locking the doors, just to be on the safe side. It’s a perfect night for apple pie.

Someone gave me a can of apple pie filling, and a package of frozen puff pastry. When I received the gift, I put both away, thinking I would use them for other things. But, today, I realized I could put them together and make a wonderful pie. There is no need for a pie pan, just a sheet pan, and some parchment paper to keep the pastry from sticking. Of course, you could use other fillings, cherry or blueberry would be great.

Easy Puff Pastry Apple Pie on YouTube


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How to Roast a Perfect Turkey in a Nesco Roaster Oven

Recipes in this PostRoasted turkey in a Nesco Roaster

Every Thanksgiving, The Good Plate goes crazy with people wanting to know how to roast a perfect turkey in a Nesco oven. Since I wrote the first article in 2009, I have made some significant changes to the preparation of the bird, mostly to cut down on time, but also to increase flavor and crispness of the skin. This year, in 2015, my bird was truly perfect, and everyone exclaimed about how much they don’t like breast meat because it’s too dry, but loved mine because it was nice and moist. If you want the older recipe with the liquid brine, please visit How to Make a Perfect Turkey in a Nesco Roaster Oven.


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Chocolate Dipped Peppermint Fudge for Valentines

Recipes in this Post

Finished Chocolate Dipped Peppermint Fudge

Sometimes you get lucky and someone gives you a whole bunch of boxes of Christmas Peppermint Candy Canes. I was lucky, my friend gave me six boxes of candy someone had given her. She was surprised when I said I wanted it, and she wanted to know what I was going to do with it. I said, “Make Peppermint Fudge, of course!”

Span was excited to help me because he got the job of breaking up the candy canes into more manageable pieces. First he did this with his hands, came and showed them to me and I said, “You know, breaking them goes quicker when you use a hammer.” So, he got a hammer, and he started banging away at them. I was washing dishes and didn’t realize he had started, or where he was going this. I now have little bits of candy cane on the floor in the living room. No big deal, I will vacuum them up. The point is he had a good time, and really felt he was helping.

We made the fudge last night and put it in the refrigerator to firm up. I was thinking of dipping the pieces in chocolate, but I only had unsweetened chocolate. If that happens to you, it’s not a show stopper.

How to Make Dipping Chocolate with Unsweetened Chocolate

Double BoilerI like to melt my chocolate in a double boiler. I also prefer to make my own double boiler by placing a metal bowl above pan half filled with water. The bowl’s circumference is much larger than the pan, so a) there is no chance of the chocolate falling into the water, and most importantly, b) because of the large circumference, there is little chance of steam getting to the chocolate and making it seize. Once chocolate has seized, about the only thing it’s good for is breaking up for chocolate chip cookies, or beating the heck out of it to make chocolate ganache.

Making Dipping Chocolate with Unsweetned ChocolateI found myself in a quandary as I did not have enough semi-sweet chocolate to dip all the fudge, and I didn’t want to waste time going to the store to buy more. It’s actually not a problem, you can add sugar to melted chocolate, and it will be just fine. As a matter of fact, just as in using salted butter gives you little control over saltiness in dishes, using semi-sweet chocolate also gives you limited control over the sweetness of the chocolate. The important thing to remember is that you must use the finest grain pure cane sugar you can get to avoid grittiness. Add the sugar to the melted chocolate, slowly, stirring all the while. Whatever you do, don’t let the sugar liquefy or you’ll just have a mess of seized chocolate. The ratio is about 1/4 cup of sugar to every ounce of unsweetened chocolate. You will have to test it for taste, though, depending on how sweet you want the final product.

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