Old favorites and new twists to try for Thanksgiving

As area families make plans to get together and share the Thanksgiving holiday with extended relatives, there are some tried-and-true favorites at each dinner. Thanks to submissions from our readers, we are able to offer you a glimpse into other families’ favorite dishes. (Courtesy photo)

As area families make plans to get together and share the Thanksgiving holiday with extended relatives, there are some tried-and-true favorites at each dinner. Maybe it’s Grandma’s special mashed potatoes or Aunt Sal’s never-fail pies, but there’s a recipe tradition tied to holiday meals.

Thanks to submissions from our readers, we are able to offer you a glimpse into other families’ favorite dishes. Who knows? This year’s new recipe may become a favorite in your holiday gatherings as well.

Tom’s 7-Minute Deviled Eggs


• 1 dozen store-bought eggs

• Miracle Whip

• Sweet pickle relish

• Yellow mustard

• Paprika

Boil eggs in a rolling boil for nine minutes. Drain and cool by putting in a bowl of water in the refrigerator to cool overnight. (Eggs peel easily when quite cool.) Remove shells, cut eggs lengthwise and pop yolks into a mixing bowl. Put the halves of the egg whites onto a serving tray. Mash yolks with fork until all lumps are gone. Put in two large tablespoons of Miracle Whip and stir until mixture is thick, adding more Miracle Whip if needed. Add 1/2 teaspoon pickle relish and 1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard, or other amounts to suit your taste. Mixture should be thick but not runny. Spoon mixture into egg white halves. “Plump” each egg up. Mixture should be enough for all 24 egg halves. Sprinkle paprika lightly on eggs for color. Cover eggs and put in refrigerator to prevent drying out. Serves 20 people, more or less.

“These are my ‘7-minute eggs’ because they will be gone in seven minutes, guaranteed! I almost never have any left over.”

— Tom Seager, Rodney

Chocolate pudding pie, with the whipped cream topping decorated with mini chocolate chips and dusted with cocoa powder. (Courtesy photo)

Chocolate Pudding Pie



• 2 cups (180g) graham cracker crumbs (about 14 full sheets)

• 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, melted


• 2 large egg yolks

• 2 Tablespoons (30ml) cold water

• 1 teaspoon gelatin

• 2 cups (480ml) whole milk

• 2/3 cup (130g) granulated sugar

• 3 Tablespoons (23g) all-purpose flour

• 6 ounces (170g) bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

Whipped Cream

• 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream/heavy whipping cream

• 1/4 cup (30g) confectioners’ sugar

• 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

• optional: fresh berries, chocolate shavings, fresh mint, etc., for topping


Make the crust: Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Mix the graham cracker crumbs and melted butter together until completely combined. Press tightly into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie dish. Pre-bake crust for 8 minutes.

Make the pudding: It’s best to measure out all of the pudding ingredients before beginning because you will need to move quickly. Whisk the egg yolks together in a bowl. Set aside. Whisk the cold water and gelatin together in a medium saucepan. Allow to sit for 2 minutes to slightly thicken, then turn the stove on to medium-low heat and place the saucepan on top. Whisk in the milk, sugar, and flour. Whisk aggressively to dissolve the sugar, then slowly whisk as the mixture heats.

When the mixture is warm and slowly simmering (not boiling!), slowly drizzle about 1/4 cup (60ml) of it into the beaten egg yolks while whisking it all together. The point of the slow pour and the whisking is to temper the egg yolks. Once the 1/4 cup is added, very slowly pour the egg yolk mixture into the saucepan. Whisk it all together as the mixture begins to thicken. Once bubbles begin to burst at the surface, whisk in the chopped chocolate until combined. Whisk for about 1 more minute as the pudding continues to thicken and bubble. Remove the pudding from heat. If you notice lumps, you can strain the pudding through a fine sieve, but that’s optional.

Pour pudding into the prepared pie crust. Immediately cover the top of the pudding with clear plastic wrap (directly on the surface of the pudding). Allow pudding pie to cool for 1 hour at room temperature before putting into the refrigerator to chill. Refrigerate for 4 hours and up to 24 hours until the pudding has completely set.

Make the whipped cream: Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the heavy cream, confectioners’ sugar, and vanilla on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form, about 5 minutes. Spread or pipe onto the chilled pie. Garnish with optional toppings. Slice and serve.

— Ariel Moreno


Spinach Mini Quiches


• pie/pastry dough

• 2 eggs

• 1/2 cup half-and-half

• 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

• 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (or garlic salt)

• 1/4 teaspoon pepper

• 9 ounces frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed to drain

• 3 tablespoons chopped onion

Heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line bottom and sides of 24 ungreased mini muffin cups with pie/pastry dough, extending dough about 1/4 inch above edge of cup. In medium bowl, beat eggs. Stir in half-and-half, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder and pepper. Stir in drained spinach and onions. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of mixture into each muffin cup. Bake 16 to 18 minutes or until puffed and golden brown. Cool 5 minutes before carefully removing from pan to cooling rack. Serve warm or cool, store covered in refrigerator.

— Flora Sermon


No Bake Pumpkin Pie


• 9-inch prepared graham cracker crust

• 0.25 ounce package unflavored gelatin

• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

• 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

• 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

• 1/2 teaspoon salt

• 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk

• 2 eggs, beaten

• 15 ounce can pumpkin puree

In a heavy saucepan, combine gelatin, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt. Stir in condensed milk and beaten eggs, mixing well. Let stand one minute, then place on burner over low heat, stirring constantly for about 10 minutes or until gelatin dissolves and mixture thickens. Remove from heat. Stir in pumpkin, mixing thoroughly, and pour mixture into graham cracker crust. Chill for at least 3 hours before serving. Yield: 8 servings

— Flora Sermon


Pecan Pie Muffins


• 1 cup brown sugar

• 1/2 cup flour

• 1 cup chopped pecans

• 2/3 cup melted butter, cooled slightly

• 2 eggs

Mix together all ingredients. Spoon mixture into mini muffin cups. Bake at 350 degrees F for 25 to 30 minutes. cool for a few minutes and remove carefully from pan. **Do not use muffin liners/paper — these muffins will stick to the liners.**

— Flora Sermon


Cinnamon Almonds


• 1 cup sugar

• 3 cups raw almonds

• 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon

• 1/4 cup water

In a large skillet combine the sugar, cinnamon and water. Add almonds and stir constantly over medium heat on stovetop, coating almonds with the syrupy mixture. Keep stirring until the sugar crystallizes. Remove from heat and scoop almonds onto wax or parchment paper. Let the cinnamon almonds cool before serving. When completely cool (2 to 3 hours) store in airtight container.

“You may substitute walnuts, pecans or any other nut for almonds, or use a variety of nuts. I use 1 cup each of almonds, pecans and walnuts.”

— Flora Sermon


Impossible Pumpkin Pie

Serves: 8

Ready in: 1-2 hrs


• 16 ounces pumpkin pie filling

• 12 ounces evaporated milk

• 2 tablespoons butter

• 2 eggs

• 3/4 cup sugar

• 1/2 cup Bisquick

• 2 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

• 2 teaspoons vanilla

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 10 x 1 1/2-inch pie plate. Beat all ingredients in blender on high speed 1 minute or until smooth, or beat the mixture with a mixer on medium speed about 2 minutes or until smooth. Pour into pie plate. Bake 50 to 55 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.

“Usually I get a large can of pumpkin and just double the recipe. If using the tin foil pie tins the doubled recipe will fill three and may take an extra 10 to 15 minutes to cook. Just keep an eye on it.”

— Laura Marsh


Betty Crocker pumpkin bread can be a tasty treat while waiting for the main course of the Thanksgiving meal. (Pioneer photo)

Betty Crocker Pumpkin Bread


• 1 can (15 ounces) pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)

• 1 2/3 cups sugar

• 2/3 cup vegetable oil

• 2 teaspoons vanilla

• 4 eggs

• 3 cups Gold Medal® all-purpose or whole wheat flour

• 1/2 cup coarsely chopped nuts

• 1/2 cup raisins, if desired

• 2 teaspoons baking soda

• 1 teaspoon salt

• 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

• 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

• 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1. Move oven rack to low position so that tops of pans will be in center of oven. Heat oven to 350ºF. Grease bottoms only of 2 loaf pans, 8 1/2×4 1/2×2 1/2 inches, or 1 loaf pan 9x5x3 inches, with shortening.

2. Stir together pumpkin, sugar, oil, vanilla and eggs in large bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients. Pour into pans.

3. Bake 8-inch loaves 50 to 60 minutes, 9-inch loaf 1 hour 10 minutes to 1 hour 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes. Loosen sides of loaves from pans; remove from pans and place top side up on wire rack. Cool completely, about 2 hours, before slicing. Wrap tightly and store at room temperature up to 4 days, or refrigerate up to 10 days.

— Laura Marsh


Mimi’s Cole Slaw


• 1 head of cabbage

• dash of salt

• 1 cup half & half

• 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

• 1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar

Shred cabbage and sprinkle with salt. Mix vinegar, sugar, half & half, and a pinch of salt in a small bowl. Pour over cabbage and sir. Taste for tartness, if too tart add more sugar. Let marinate in the cream. Put cinnamon on top and serve.

— Mary Lou Wright


Lettuce and Banana Salad


• iceberg lettuce

• 2 – 3 bananas

• 1 cup Miracle Whip

• milk

• 1 to 2 TBSP sugar

Tear up the lettuce into a large bowl to the amount you want for your salad. Add 2 to 3 bananas, mix well.

In a small bowl mix miracle whip sugar, add milk to a dressing consistency; taste to see if needs more sugar. Pour over lettuce and bananas. If there doesn’t seem to be enough dressing, mix a little more Miracle Whip, sugar, and milk and mix into salad.

— Mary Lou Wright


Scallop Corn


• 2 cans of cream style corn

• 4 TBSP flour

• 2 eggs

Beat eggs and cream style corn together in bowl, add the flour to thicken. If mixture is still very runny, add a little more flour. Pour into greased baking dish.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until set.

— Mary Lou Wright


Old Buttermilk Pie that ‘Washington asked seconds for’


• 2/3 cup sugar

• 4 1/2 TBSP corn starch

• 1/2 tsp. salt

• 2 1/4 cup buttermilk

• 1/4 cup lemon juice

• 1/2 tsp grated rind of lemon

• 3 eggs separated

• baked deep dish 9 inch pie shell

• 6 TBSP sugar

Mix sugar, corn starch and salt together with buttermilk in heavy sauce pan. Gradually stir in lemon juice and lemon rind.

Cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and boils. Boil 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.

Beat egg yolks; add a little of hot mixture to egg yolks, beating it in. Add a little at a time to hot mixture, mix and blend all in hot mixture, cooking 1 minute more, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; when cooled a little, pour into baked pie shell. Beat three egg whites to stiff but not dry, gradually beat in 6 TBSP sugar, a little at a time until stiff and glossy. Pile lightly onto pie filling careful to seal meringue to edge of shell to prevent shrinking. Brown meringue lightly in 400 degree oven 8-10 minutes.

“This was served to President George Washington. No idea on who in the family was where President Washington was at the time of the pie being served to him. It has always intrigued me, though.”

— Mary Lou Wright


Mimi’s Butterscotch Pie


• 2 eggs, well beaten

• 1 cup packed brown sugar

• 2 TBSP flour or corn starch

• 2 TBSP butter, melted

• 2 cups scalded milk

• 9-inch unbaked pie shell

Mix all ingredients except the pie shell. Bake in deep dish 9 inch (unbaked) pie shell.

Bake 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Turn down heat to 350 degrees and bake 35 to 45 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.

— Mary Lou Wright

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