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Jack Daniel's enhances flavor of bread pudding

| Wednesday, Oct. 26, 2005

For Karen Hereda of New Kensington, who wanted recipes for bread pudding. From Mary A. Ross, Scott. She writes, "In this case, the proof of the pudding is in the small amount of alcohol used. Very low proof, but enhanced flavor."

Bread Pudding with Jack Daniel's Whiskey Sauce

  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons pure vanilla
  • 2 1/2 cups milk
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups cubed sourdough bread
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans

For the sauce:

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup Jack Daniel's whiskey

Heat the oven to 325 degrees.

In a bowl, beat the eggs. Add the melted butter, vanilla and milk. Gradually add the 2 cups sugar and mix thoroughly until the sugar is dissolved.

Place the bread cubes in the bottom of a 9-inch round baking dish. Pour the egg mixture over the bread. Sprinkle with the pecans and push them down into the bread. Bake for 60 minutes.

To prepare the sauce : Combine all the sauce ingredients in a saucepan. Over low heat, stir constantly until the mixture reaches a low rolling boil.

Serve the bread pudding warm with the warm sauce on the side.

Makes 6 servings.

Romano Portobello Mushrooms

For Sara Divens, Irwin, who wanted a recipe for Romano portobello mushrooms. From Joanne Newingham, Spring Church, who writes, "For lunch, serve these with a salad and crusty bread. For dinner, serve as an appetizer."

  • 4 large portobello mushrooms, stems removed and discarded
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, plus butter to grease baking dish
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup finely cut pepperoni (about 4 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup fine dry bread crumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • Dash ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup grated romano cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 4 to 5 slices Asiago or provolone cheese

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a baking dish with butter.

Brush each mushroom cap with a damp paper towel to clean off the dirt.

Melt 1 stick butter and brush it over the mushrooms. Place the mushrooms in the prepared baking dish.

Heat a frying pan and saute the onion and pepperoni. Add the bread crumbs, seasoned salt, pepper, romano cheese and parsley.

Stuff the mushrooms with some of the mixture. You will be making layers of filling. Between each layer, add a small piece of Asiago or provolone cheese, ending with the cheese.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

Makes 4 servings.

Hot Pepper Jam or Jelly

For Nancy Juris, Sarver, who wanted a recipe for hot pepper jam. From Wendy Kozubal, Claridge, who writes, "Here is my recipe, adapted from the 'Ball Blue Book of Canning.' It makes enough for two batches in a hot water bath canner."

Editor's note: When seeding or cutting hot peppers, wear rubber gloves to prevent burns.

  • 7 large sweet red peppers
  • 10 hot peppers of choice, such as jalapeno, Scotch bonnet, cayenne or banana
  • 2 cups cider vinegar, divided
  • 2 cups apple cider or juice, more if needed
  • 2 cups finely minced hot peppers
  • 2 packages powdered pectin, such as Sure-Jell
  • 1 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 10 cups granulated sugar, divided
  • 2 tablespoons butter, divided
  • Red food coloring

Wash the peppers; stem and seed. Cut the sweet red peppers into 1/2-inch pieces. Halve or quarter the whole hot peppers.

Pure half of the red and half of the cut-up hot peppers in a blender or food processor with 1 cup cider vinegar. Turn into a nonreactive bowl or pot (nonaluminum) and repeat with the remaining sweet and cut-up hot peppers. Add the second batch of puree to the first and add 2 cups apple cider and the 2 cups minced hot peppers. Refrigerate overnight.

The next day, you can strain the mixture if you want jelly; otherwise, use as is for jam.

Measure 4 cups of the mixture for each batch. If you do not have a total of 8 cups, add more apple cider.

Combine 4 cups pepper mixture with 1 package powdered pectin and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir, using a wire whisk, to dissolve the pectin completely.

Bring to a boil in a 10-quart heavy pot over high heat, stirring constantly. Add 5 cups sugar; stir until dissolved. Return to a rolling boil. Boil hard for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.

Remove from the heat, add 1 tablespoon butter, stir and skim foam from the top. Add a few drops red food coloring.

Ladle into hot, sterilized 8-ounce canning jars, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Adjust two-piece caps and process for 5 minutes in a boiling water bath.

Remove and turn the jars upside down to cool to distribute the pepper pieces. Cool until partially set, then invert to finish cooling.

Repeat the process with the remaining ingredients.

Makes 17 cups hot pepper jam.

Does anyone have these recipes?

  • I am requesting a recipe for a Bisquick-type thin pizza crust that is flaky -- like pastry -- and also one for a dressing for salad similar to the one served at Baldonieri's Restaurant and Tap Room in Latrobe. It's a vinaigrette made with pineapple juice.

    -- Nancy Salvio, Greensburg

  • I'm looking for beef stew recipes to make in a slow cooker.

    -- Allison Smith, Washington, Pa.

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