2 cups warm water or milk
2 pkgs dry active yeast
6-7 cups bread flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 t. salt
1/4 cup oil
1 egg
Directions for challah bread:
1. In large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water (careful of the temperature or it won't rise. You can use a thermometer to check the temperature. You want 75-120 degrees.) Stir in sugar and salt. Add 3 cups flour and mix well. Add oil and egg and mix well. Then add remaining flour. (The dough will be a little sticky but don't add more flour.)
2. Wet a clean dish towel and ring it out. Cover the bowl of dough with the towel. Put the bowl in the refrigerator and let stand overnight.
3. When dough is doubled in size braid as follows:
Divide the dough into 3 pieces. Cut 1 piece into thirds; with your hands roll each piece into a 16 inch-long rope or snake. Place ropes side by side and braid as you would hair.
Pinch ends of braid to seal. Place on cookie sheet the bottom loaf. Repeat with another piece for another loaf. Cut remaining dough into 6 pieces; roll each into 17 inch-long ropes. Braid each set of three ropes; pinch ends to seal.
Place each smaller braid on top of a large braid; tuck ends of top braid under bottom braid stretching top braid if necessary.
4. Arrange loaves (This recipe makes 2 loaves) at least 5 inches apart on oiled or greased cookie sheet; cover and let rise in warm place until doubles in size. (Depending on your house temperature—try to find a warm place.)
5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake bread for about 35 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and brush top and sides of loaves with butter. Let cool on wire rack.

Too busy for all that? Then read this “Super Jiffy” 2 hour method: *If you have are having a problem with finding a nice warm moist place to get the dough to rise, try your microwave! Here's what to do. Make half the recipe at a time; the trick is to really dissolve the yeast well - so use your mixer or food processor and beat it until it foams up tall. Then add the sugar and mix it well until it is dissolved well. The mixture is VERY foamy by this time. Then add the ingredients until you have a stiff dough (I have bread hooks on my mixer, and use the cutter down in the bottom of the food processor) When you are ready to let it rise, take a wet (not sopping wet, but wet) towel and put it in the microwave to heat for about two minutes. Careful! It is very hot when you take it out! Then put it across the top of the dough bowl and set the bowl in the microwave with the door shut for 30-60 minutes...just long enough to rise up to the top of the large bowl. Works great! Then as you begin to braid the bread, turn on your oven to 350 degrees to warm the top of my electric stove (those of you with gas stoves have a pilot light for this purpose). Then place your cookie sheets (Airbake cookie sheets work well for this project!) on the top of the electric burners (Make sure that they are not turned on!). Take braided bread and place them onto the heated cookie sheets. Then heat another damp towel in the microwave for a few seconds to go across them while they rise again. Just remember that the secret is having a nice warm and moist place to raise your bread dough to do the job quickly!



3 c. flour
1-1/4 tsp. baking powder
1-1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
4 eggs
3 c. sugar
1-1/2 c. oil
3 oz. melted & cooled chocolate
1-1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. almond extract
3 c. coarsely grated zucchini
1 c. chopped nuts
1/2 c. chopped dates

Sift together flour, baking powder, soda, salt and cinnamon. Set aside. Beat eggs in large bowl until frothy. Gradually beat in sugar and oil. Add chocolate, vanilla and almond extract. Fold in dry ingredients. Squeeze excess moisture from zucchini. Fold zucchini, nuts and dates into batter. Pour into greased and floured 10 inch tube pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 15 minutes to 1 hour and 25 minutes. Test with a toothpick. Let stand inverted on wire rack 20 minutes. Remove pan. Cool, cook completely on rack


Apple Salad

(Ready In: 1-2 hrs)

1 can (20 oz size) pineapple chunks (juice reserved for dressing)
2 quarts chopped red skinned apples (skins left on)
2 cups green seedless grapes, halved
1 1/2 cup toasted pecans
1 cup celery

reserved pineapple juice
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup mayonnaise

Drain pineapple, reserving the juice and set chunks aside.

Dressing: In small sauce pan combine the pineapple juice, butter, sugar, and lemon juice and bring to a boil over medium heat. In a small bowl combine the cornstarch and enough water to make a smooth mixture; add to the boiling juice. Reduce heat and cook until mixture is thick and smooth. Chill. Whisk in the mayonnaise.

Place the pineapple chunks and the remaining salad ingredients in a large bowl. Toss well; then mix in the chilled dressing.


Not Disappointing Au Gratin Potatoes

1-¼ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1-¼ cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons cornstarch
3 pounds Russet or Idaho potatoes—peeled and sliced 1/8 inch thick—use food processor or mandoline slicer—cannot hand cut to thinness needed!
¾ cup heavy cream
½ cup chicken broth

Combines cheeses—Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Toss cheese and the cornstarch in large bowl until evenly coated.

Assemble gratin—Shingle half of the potatoes in large gratin dish, sprinkle evenly with ¾ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper, and half of the cheese mixture. Repeat potato layer, salt, and pepper layer. Combine cream and broth in large measuring cup and pour over potatoes. Top with the other half of cheese mixture.

Bake—bake until golden brown and fork inserted into center meets little resistance, about 75 to 90 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes to setup and then serve. Enjoy!




Makes 1 dozen large muffins

Remember, if you're short on time, you can melt the butter, mix it with the eggs, and stir it into the dry ingredients. When thoroughly mixed, beat in the yogurt and proceed with the recipe. To cinnamon-coat muffin tops, dip warm muffins in melted butter, then in mixture of one-half cup granulated sugar and two teaspoons cinnamon.

3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon table salt
10 tablespoons unsalted butter , softened
1 cup granulated sugar , minus 1 tablespoon
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups plain low-fat yogurt
3 tablespoons instant espresso powder
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Vegetable cooking spray or additional unsalted butter for muffin tins

1. Adjust oven rack to lower middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in medium bowl; set aside.
2. Beat butter and sugar with electric mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in one-half of dry ingredients. Dissolve instant espresso powder in yogurt and beat in one-third of yogurt. Beat in remaining dry ingredients in two batches, alternating with yogurt, until incorporated. Fold chocolate chips into finished batter.
3. Spray twelve-cup muffin tin with vegetable cooking spray or coat lightly with butter. Use large ice cream scoop to divide batter evenly among cups. Bake until muffins are golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes. Set on wire rack to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. Remove muffins from tin and serve warm.

Filling the Muffin Tin

1. For clean dispensing and uniform size, use an ice-cream scoop to fill muffin tins.

2. When baking less than a full tin, fill empty compartments with water to ensure that heat is evenly conducted.


The lemon curd is optional, but I encourage you to use it. Lemon pairs well with blueberries. It gives this healthy smoothie recipe a sweet tartness that really adds flavor. You can find lemon curd near the jellys in your supermarket.
Pom Wonderful makes a nice all-natural blueberry juice. Feel free to use cranberry or a cran-blueberry juice instead.

Cherry Berry Smoothie

1-1/2 cups frozen unsweetened blueberries
1 cup frozen pitted dark sweet cherries (unsweetened)
2/3 cup blueberry juice or cranberry juice
1/2 cup nonfat vanilla yogurt
1 Tbsp lemon curd (optional)

Add ingredients to your blender in order listed. Blend on high until mixture is smooth (you shouldn't be able to see any chunks of fruit). You may need to stop the blender in order to stir the fruit with a tamper or long spoon if the blender gets stuck.

Serves 3


Rich and Creamy Macaroni and Cheese

Serves 8-10

13” X 9" Baking pan

1 lb. box if elbow macaroni

2 lb. shredded extra sharp cheddar

8oz. block of cream cheese

½ cup of sour cream

1 10 ¾ oz can cheddar cheese soup

Milk—enough to make mixture loose and soupy

2 eggs

Milk, Salt & Pepper

Directions: Boil & Drain macaroni, add softened cream cheese, mixed with the ½ cup of sour cream, soup, 1 lb. of shredded cheddar, and eggs. Mix well, and add milk until mixture is loose and soupy.

Pour your mixture into baking pan. Sprinkle the remaining shredded cheese over top. Bake approximately one hour at 400 degrees, OR until browned on top.