March 1, 2012

Ella’s Kitchen

We have had a mild winter, but many of us are still getting cabin fever waiting for spring. Spring is a great time for cruises, so have a party and bring on a cruise theme!

[Ella can be contacted at or Ella – 50+ Lifestyles, 804 W Lombard Street, Davenport, IA, 52804]

Pelican Goodies

1 lb. lean ground beef
1 lb. hot pork sausage
2 medium onions
2 to 3 cloves garlic, crushed, or garlic powder to taste
2 lbs. Velveeta or mild cheddar, cut in chunks or grated
1 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
3 loaves party rye or pumpernickel bread

Brown beef and sausage in a large skillet. Drain well. Add onions, garlic and Worcestershire sauce; cook 5 more minutes. Lower heat, add cheese and stir until melted. Mixture will be gloppy. Drop by spoonfuls onto party rye or pumpernickel. Broil until cheese bubbles.
NOTE: This can be a make-ahead recipe. Keep on hand for unexpected occasions. Make up hors d’oeuvres, freeze on
baking sheets and transfer to Zip-loc bag.
Broil from frozen state as needed.


Pirate’s Citrus Punch

1  (46 oz.) can grapefruit juice
2 (46 oz.) cans pineapple juice
3  quarts orange juice
3/4 cup Maraschino cherry juice
(or just enough to make a
pinky orange color)
Ginger ale and orange sherbet
Orange, lemon and lime slices to garnish

Mix first four ingredients. This is your punch base. Unused base can be frozen for future use. Or freeze some in a ring mold to use in place of ice in a punch bowl; or freeze in ice cube trays. When ready to serve, add ginger ale and sherbet scoops or balls. Garnish with fruit slices. Ratio of ginger ale to base should be about 1/3 ginger ale to 2/3 punch base.


Short Ribs Marengo

3 to 4 lbs. meaty beef short ribs
Oil to cover bottom of Dutch oven
2 medium onions, sliced
4 carrots, cut in quarters lengthwise
2 Tbs. flour
1 (1 lb.) can tomatoes, drained, seeded and coarsely chopped
1 (11 oz.) can beef bouillon
1 soup can water
1/2 cup dry white wine or vermouth
1 bay leaf
1/2 t. thyme
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat oil in a heavy Dutch oven. Brown meat well on all sides, using tongs to turn. Do not crowd pan. Remove meat as it browns. When all meat is browned, pour off all but 2 tablespoons oil. Add onions and carrots and sauté until brown. Stir in flour. Replace meat, add tomatoes, bouillon, water, wine and seasonings. Do not add salt. Bring to a boil, lower heat, cover and simmer 2 hours, or until meat is tender. Remove meat. Boil liquid to reduce to desired thickness. Remove as much fat as possible from surface. Before serving, reheat meat in sauce. Taste for seasonings.
NOTE: It’s a good idea to make this the day before serving and refrigerate. The fat hardens and lifts right off. For added flavor, use a combination of vegetable oil and olive oil, or all olive oil.


Whipped Cream Potatoes

1 (32 oz.) bag of frozen
shredded hash brown potatoes
2 1/2 pints whipping cream
small box Velveeta cheese (cut into cubes)

Mix all ingredients and put into a 13×9 pan. Put 3 pats of margarine on top. Bake at 350 for 1 hour, stirring once halfway through
cooking time. Delicious and great for all holidays, picnics
and graduations. Serves 15
This recipe was submitted by Janice Bradley. Thanks, Janice!