zucchini quiche

Sheesh! Another Quiche?

You Betcha! My Mom “Betty” definitely loved quiche. This is the third quiche recipe here at Betty’s Cook Nook and yet the first one that is all vegetable as well as the first one that features zucchini.

Somehow I’m surprised with each and every quiche recipe – they seem to be wondrously unique in their own rightful way and yet super easy to make. I think you will enjoy this recipe!

Foodie Tips

❤  We initially debated over whether to use a frozen pie crust or a refrigerated pie crust. We went with a Pillsbury frozen crust because it was likely what was most common in the 1970s. Just like ready-to-cook tortillas weren’t readily available in the 1970s, 80s, 90s, and until the 2000s until recently, either. 

❤  I’m duly noting that a 10-inch pie shell was not to be found at my local grocery. In a post-COVID era when product sizes are getting smaller while prices are growing larger we scored a 9-inch deep dish Pillsbury crust at H-E-B.

❤  If you truly love quiche click this link and scroll down for the full meal monty of my Mom’s recipes.

i. Time

Prep: About 20-25 minutes prep and 30 minutes for baking.

Zucchini Quiche Ingredients

Late To The Party Pic: Mushrooms!

ii. Ingredients

9-10-inch   pie shell, frozen or fresh
3 tablespoons   butter (my grandmother insisted on falfurrias brand butter)
1 cup   white onions, chopped
1 cup   mushrooms, brushed clean, cut in half, and then sliced (I suggest white or baby bella ‘shrooms)
1 cup   zucchini, cut into half moons
1 cup  ½ and ½ cream
cage-free or free-range (pasture raised) eggs
1 cup   swiss or mozzarella cheese, shredded
to taste  salt and pepper

iii. What To Do

1. Preheat your oven to 375°F.

Zucchini Quiche Pie Shell

2. Place the pie shell in the oven and bake for 3-4 minutes. Remove from the oven and prick the shell with a fork. Return to oven for 5 minutes more.

Zucchini Quiche Sauté3. While the pie shell is in its second bake… in a medium-sized sauté pan place the 3 tablespoons of butter and melt it over medium heat. Add the onions, mushrooms, and zucchini. Sauté for 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and let rest. Tip: to drain, tilt the pan by placing the lid underneath and a crumbled-up paper towel in the opposite corner. Let the paper towel soak up the juices then discard the paper towel.

4. Transfer the drained sautéd veggie mixture into the pie shell.

Zucchini Quiche Poured Eggs5. In a measuring cup or bowl, whisk the 3 eggs then stir-in the 1 cup 1/2 and 1/2 cream and 1 cup of your chosen cheese. Pour the egg-cheese-cream mixture over the veggies/pie shell.

Zucchini Quiche Prepared6. Bake for about 30-35 minutes or until an inserted knife comes out clean.

Yield: About 8-10 servings.

~ Patrick

Betty’s Son
Founder and “Nostalgic Food Blogger” of Betty’s Cook Nook

Zucchini Quiche Recipe

A Scan Of Mom’s Original Zucchini Quiche Recipe

11/30/21


peachy blueberry cobbler

Peachy Blueberry Cobbler Recipe A Summertime Flavor Sensation

When I was a kid, if I heard the word “cobbler” I knew there was likely going to be an extra-special treat coming my way!

After a trip to Dime Box, Texas in the 70s, our San Antonio garden was graced with dewberry plants that were given to us by a family member who had them growing on their farm. What’s a dewberry? Dewberries are very similar to blackberries and they are a favorite berry for many Texans. One of my favorite dessert memories of all time was when my Mom, “Betty,” made dewberry cobbler with he fruit coming from our very own garden!

We liked this peachy blueberry cobbler because it wasn’t overly sweet and it sure tastes great for summertime meals. This recipe is super-easy to make and if you have a kid or two handy they could even join-in on the fun. As Joe said, “this is definitely a recipe worth sharing!” So here it is from us to you!

This recipe hails from a July 1980 Southern Living magazine from a special “Summer Glows With Peaches” section devoted to great culinary ways to create with peaches. You can see the original recipe scan below and you’re getting extra peach recipes to boot!

Peachy Blueberry Cobbler RecipeFoodie Tips

❤  You can easily adapt this recipe by using your favorite fruits. Pineapple, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, etc. would all make a tasty cobbler.

❤  If peaches and blueberries are in season I suggest using fresh. You can also substitute frozen berries that have been thawed, rinsed, and drained.

i. Time

Prep: About 75 minutes, including 15 minutes for prep and 1 hour for baking. 

ii. Ingredients

1 cup   sugar
1 cup   all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons   baking powder
1 teaspoon   salt
1 cup   milk
⅓ cup   butter, melted (my grandmother insisted on falfurrias brand butter)
3 medium   peaches, peeled, sliced and lightly sugared
⅔ cup   fresh or frozen blueberries
to serve   Bluebell vanilla ice cream (optional but recommended!)

Peachy Blueberry Cobbleriii. What To Do

1. Preheat your oven to 350°F.

2. Prepare the peaches, sprinkle with sugar and set aside.

3. Combine the dry ingredients (sugar, flour, baking powder and salt) in a medium-sized mixing bowl.

4. Combine the milk and melted butter and pour over the dry ingredients. Mix everything until it’s smooth.

5. Pour the batter into a greased 12″ x 8″ x 2″ glass baking dish.
How To Make Peachy Blueberry Cobbler

6. Spread the sliced peaches evenly over the top of the  batter and then top with the blueberries.

7. Bake for 50-60 minutes or until the batter rises through the fruit and the top is golden brown.

Peachy Blueberry Cobbler

8. Serve your Peachy Blueberry Cobbler warm and top with ice cream, if preferred.

Blue Bell Ice Cream

Yield: About 8-10 servings.

~ Patrick

Betty’s Son
Founder and “Nostalgic Food Blogger” of Betty’s Cook Nook

Southern Living Peachy Blueberry Recipe

A Scan Of Mom’s Original Peachy Blueberry Cobbler Recipe

11/30/21


fondue

Fondue Recipes From Bettys Cook NookFor The Love Of Fondue

Growing up the youngest of three boys meant I was the small, quiet one. The one who listened and watched to center stage from afar.

Older me tells younger me that’s AOK because it helped me make the most of the precious time I had with my parents. I was able to soak it all in and pick up on a few tips I still hold near and dear to this day… including a few memories like the joy of fondue.

I’m not sure the first time I had fondue but I was likely about the age of 12.

My family would gather around the spirited fondue pot to create our meal using individual spears, dipping things in hot oil or cheese and then a sauce or two that Mom would create. The simple things.

Little did I know back then but fondue was more than “just that.” Fondue marries food with the imagination and to me, there’s nothing better!

Santa and Fondue CheeseA Christmas Story

This summer I stumbled upon a random search result for a vintage fondue pot that reminded me of the one my parents had. I knew what I had to do.

A few days later the electric fondue set arrived at my home and I set it aside for a special day when I would unveil the 1970s fondue pot. It sat in the dark since then as most of 2021 brought some challenging times caring for – and parting with – my secondary shadow in the form of my yellow Lab, Harley.

This Christmas Day I thought there was no better way to round out the year than by revving-up the fondue pot and reliving and sharing this foodie form with my family and here, with you.

If you’re not already a fondue fan, I hope you give fondue a try! It’s remarkably simple and will treat you to the joy of this dish with Swiss origins!

Vintage Oster Electric Fondue SetFon-dos and Don’ts

❤  Fon-do try these out: I’ve included a variety of my favorite recipes that caught my Mom’s eye below – cheese and beef fondue and a few sauce suggestions, including butter-browned mushrooms, caper butter, mustard, and a red sauce! Scans of the recipes from her cookbook are also below.

❤  This is a dish of variety! Fon-don’t just try one dip or item to be dipped – go for a range of flavor and put the power of the fondue pot to the fullest! For the cheese fondue you can try cubed pears or apples as an appetizer entry or a dessert dismount! I don’t have two pots but I’m only guessing that cooked beef fondue dipped into cheese fondue is a double fondue delight!

❤  Fon-do check out some of the vintage fondue pots I found strolling on Etsy. They’re hot so get yours before they’re gone!

Vintage Oster Fondue Poti. Time

Total prep: There’s no rush here in the land of fondue, but I’d allow at least 90 minutes – 2 hours for the whole shebang. 

Emmentaler Swiss Cheeseii. Ingredients + directions

cheese fondue:
to dunk  french bread, torn or cut into bite-size pieces
¾ pound (about 3 cups)
  swiss cheese, cut into thin julienne strips
1 tablespoon   flour
1 clove   garlic, halved
1 ¼ cups   sauterne (a sweet french wine)
dash  fresh cracked black pepper
dash  nutmeg
3 tablespoons  dry sherry

Fondue Julienned EmmentalerSauternes Fondue

cheese fondue directions: 1) I toasted up my bread a bit to give it a little crunch. Toasting the bread on a foil-lined pan for 5 minutes at 350°F should do the trick. 2) Toss the cheese with the flour to coat and set aside. 3) Rub the inside of the fondue cooker vigorously with the cut surface of the garlic clove. 4) Add the sauterne and warm it just until air bubbles start to rise. Don’t cover and do not let it boil. 5) With a wood or silicon spatula stir constantly from this step forward and in the same direction – a process known as “shear thinning” which helps the cheesy fondue become thinner. Add a handful of cheese strips and wait until the cheese has melted before tossing in another handful. Keep stirring! After all the cheese has been incorporated and the mixture is bubbling gently, stir in the pepper, nutmeg and the sherry. 6) Dunk spears of the cubed bread into the cheese, twirl and enjoy! If the cheese becomes too thick pour in a little warmed sauterne (or butter, if you are channeling my inner foodie).

Beef Fonduebeef fondue:
4-5+ cups
  salad oil, for cooking (vegetable, canola, corn, peanut, etc.)
1 ½ pounds   beef tenderloin, trimmed and cut into ¾ inch cubes
to serve  your chosen sauces/sidekicks (recipes below)

directions: 1) Pour the salad oil in the fondue pot to 2″ or no more than ½ full. 2) Heat to 425°F or until the oil slowly boils. 3) Spear a beef cube with your fondue fork and place it in the oil. 4) Rotate the beef so it’s evenly cooked to your desired doneness. It doesn’t take long! Dip the beef with your sauce and enjoy!

butter-browned mushrooms:
2 tablespoons  butter (my Grandmother “Nanny” insisted on Falfurrias)
2 cups  fresh mushrooms, sliced

directions: 1) Melt butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. 2) Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until evenly browned. Season with salt and better and serve alongside the beef fondue.

Fondue Caper Buttercaper butter:
½ cup   butter, softened
3 tablespoons  capers, with liquid

directions: 1) Place the butter and capers, with liquid, in a small mixing bowl. 2) Beat until light and fluffy. 3) Serve alongside the beef fondue.

mustard sauce:
bottle   dijon style hot mustard (we used french’s stone ground dijon mustard)

directions: Simply squeeze the mustard into a serving bowl and use it as a dipping sauce for the beef fondue. What could be easier?

red sauce:
¾ cup   catsup
2 tablespoons   vinegar
½ teaspoon   prepared horseradish

directions: Combine all the ingredients together in a small bowl and let chill and mingle for at least 30 minutes. You’ve just made a tangy dipping sauce for the beef fondue. I used leftovers on a homemade hamburger and it was great for french fry dipping!

From the simple to the savory and everything in between, I hope you have fun creating your own special fondue tastes and memories to last a lifetime!

~ Patrick

Betty’s Son
Founder and “Nostalgic Food Blogger” of Betty’s Cook Nook

I’m still on the hunt for what publication these recipes came from (below). I recognize the font and some of the type treatments and I think this likely hails from the 1970s or possibly the 60s. The fabulous food of skiing!

Fondue Recipes The Fabulous Food Of Skiing

A Scan Of Mom’s Fondue Recipes

Vintage Fondue Pot

Oster Fondue Inside Label

A Scan Of The Insert Inside My Vintage Fondue Pot


pumpkin cheesecake

Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe From Betty's Cook NookLet’s Break For Cheesecake

With all the pumpkin proliferation that erupts at the tail end of summer this is a recipe that might stand out from the orangey crowd.

I was a little leery about baking a sour cream topping but I was reminded that folks in these parts don’t mess around with sour cream. Go on – feel the force – the sour cream worked and made a nice topping for the cheesecake.

I don’t recall eating cheesecake until the 80s, when I dove fork first into a Sara Lee cheesecake. With origins to the 1940s Sara Lee cheesecake had been my north star for what a cheesecake should be. Nowadays baking a homemade cheesecake is simply worth the extra love.

Foodie Tips

❤  The amount of graham crackers caused some intense discussion in our household. We netted out that “18 double graham crackers” actually meant 18 sheets of 4-up crackers, which is 72 total crackers not 36. I guess in the golden days a single cracker was assumed to be a 2-up cracker whereas today it would likely be considered 2 separate crackers.

❤  Make sure your spring form pan is well seated and sealed. Mine leaked a little bit in the oven which I solved by placing a pan underneath to catch any drips. After a few minutes baking the cake had set and all was good!

❤  You definitely do not want to over bake your cheesecake. Over baking will likely form cracks through and on the top resulting in a dry vs. moist end result. I’m reminded that the creamiest cheesecake I ever had was the one we water bathed in our oven. To do so we just wrapped the bottom of the springform pan with foil and placed it in a small pan of water while it cooked. The extra moisture will treat you to an amazingly moist cheesecake. I’ll try this method on the next go of this recipe!

i. Time

Prep: About 1.5 hours, including 30 minutes for prep and 1 hour for baking. Most people prefer their cheesecake chilled, so cooling it in the fridge for a few hours or overnight is recommended!

ii. Ingredients

18 sheets (72 total)  graham crackers, crushed and divided
1 cup (2 sticks)   butter, melted (my Grandmother “Nanny” insisted on Falfurrias)
3 (8 ounce) packages  cream cheese
1 ½ cups  sugar
4  cage free eggs, separated and beaten
15 ounce can   pumpkin
2 teaspoons  ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon   ground ginger
½ teaspoon
   ground cloves

for the topping:
1 pint (16 ounces)   sour cream
4 tablespoons   sugar
1 teaspoon  vanilla

iii. What To Do

1. Preheat your oven to 375°F.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Making Crumble Topping2. Crush the graham crackers in a bowl by hand or you can place them in a Ziploc bag, seal, and crush with a rolling pin or simply by hand. Mix the butter into the crumbs and press it into the bottom of a spring form pan. Reserve enough of the crumbs to cover the top in step 8 below.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Making Sour Cream Topping3. Cream together the cream cheese, sugar, beaten egg yolks (not the whites yet!), the pumpkin and the 3 spices.

4. Hand fold-in the egg whites.

5. Pour everything into the spring form pan and bake for ~25 minutes at 375°F. I was using my gas oven and needed to add an additional 10-15 minutes for the cake to set.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Fresh From The Oven6. When done remove the cheesecake from the oven and let it cool a bit. We’re not done with the oven yet – increase the temperature to 475°F.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Sour Cream Topping7. While the cake is cooling lets make our topping by hand-stirring together the sour cream, sugar and vanilla. Pour this mixture on top of the cheese cake and return it to the oven to bake for 5 minutes at 475°F

Pumpkin Cheesecake Crumble Topping8. Remove the cheesecake from the oven, sprinkle on the remaining (reserved) buttery graham cracker crumbs from above and let it cool. I let my cheesecake rest on the bottom of the springform pan insert and chilled it in the fridge for a few hours until we were ready to cut it into slices and enjoy it!

A Slice Of Pumpkin Cheesecake

Yield: About 8-16 slices, depending on how hungry you are.

~ Patrick

Betty’s Son
Founder and “Nostalgic Food Blogger” of Betty’s Cook Nook

Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe Scan

A Scan Of Mom’s Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe

11/30/21


lemon pie hawaiian

The Hawaiian Pie Of My Eye

This pie definitely tastes like it flew straight out of the 1950s or 60s and flashed forward into my mouth. And based on where this recipe was located in my Mom Betty’s cookbook, I’m likely not that far off on its origins. I’ll continue some research to see if I can determine the publication for this recipe because I recognize the size, format and paper.

The original recipe below claims this pie is a cross between lemon chiffon and lemon meringue. I had to Google the difference between both in order to put my stink eye at ease.

I love that this recipe calls for a pre-made pie crust vs. fresh (hey, this era was a time often about making fast meals which were often a combination of part scratch and part ready made). This has a definite sweet-sugary taste which is one of the reasons I recommend unsweetened coconut – you don’t need extra in this.

I’m not sure how Hawaiian this pie actually is but with coconut in it, the taste will likely remind you of soothing tropical sunsets and beautiful beaches. You can read more about my Texas family’s connection to Hawaii through a few more Hawaiian-inspired recipes. Enjoy!

Foodie Tips

❤  What’s a pie shield? It’s typically made of silicon and it can help prevent the top edges of your crust from burning. Here’s ours from Williams-Sonoma which is adjustable and its been a life saver! You can also make your own impromptu version by using foil and shaping it around the crust’s edge.

❤  A word about the filling. We had a lot of filling left over but we didn’t opt to make a second pie as we were on diets (yeah, that’s the ticket)! We poured the extra filling into some custard cups to devour on some weak moments after our initial pie festival.

i. Time

Total prep: Allow 1 hour for Hawaiian pie prep plus 4 hours for chilling. 

ii. Ingredients

8 ¼ ounce can  crushed pineapple, drained (I could only find an 8 ounce can of Libby’s)
¼ cup  brown sugar, packed
¼ cup  unsweetened flaked coconut
2 tablespoons  unsalted butter, softened (my Grandmother “Nanny” insisted on Falfurrias)
9-inch  pastry shell, unbaked
4-serving size  regular lemon pudding mix
½ cup  granulated sugar
1 ¾ cup  water
cage free egg yolks, slightly beaten (save the whites for below!)
2 tablespoons  fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon  more butter
cage free egg whites
¼ cup  more granulated sugar
to garnish  toasted coconut (optional but highly recommended)

iii. What To Do

0. PREP
Set out your butter to soften to room temperature. Preheat your oven to 425°F

1. MAKE THE PIE BASE
Combine the drained pineapple, brown sugar, ¼ cup of the coconut and 2 tablespoons butter. Spread it over the bottom of the pastry shell.

2. BAKE THE PIE’S BOTTOM
Cover the edge of the pastry with foil or a silicon pie shield. Bake in your preheated oven at 425°F for 15 minutes, removing the crust protector after the first 5 minutes of baking. When done, remove the pie from the oven and set it aside to cool.

3. LET’S MAKE CUSTARDY FILLING
In a  medium-sized saucepan over medium-high heat combine the pudding mix with a ½ cup of the granulated sugar. Stir in the water and egg yolks and cook and stir until things are bubbly. Remove from heat. Stir in the lemon juice and the remaining butter. Cover with clear plastic wrap and let things cool, stirring occasionally.

4. LET’S PREP THE WHITES
In a bowl beat the egg whites on high speed with your mixer until you see soft peaks. Gradually beat in the remaining ¼ cup sugar until everything forms stiff peaks. Fold the egg whites into the cooled filling. Pile everything on top of the baked pastry shell.

5. PREPARE FOR DISMOUNT
Place the pie in the fridge for at least 4 hours. When ready to serve garnish with some toasted coconut.

~ Patrick

Betty’s Son
Founder and “Nostalgic Food Blogger” of Betty’s Cook Nook

A Scan Of Mom’s Original Recipe Clipping


brazil nut chips

Brazil Nut Chips HeroGet Ready To Go Nuts

I’m not sure where Brazil nuts have been hiding my entire life. It’s likely because as a native Texan “nuts” really just means “pecans” which have been the center of my world since I was a younger me. Also surprising to me is that Brazil nuts aren’t nuts per se but seeds that hail from the Amazon rainforest’s Brazil nut tree.

Low and behold we were on a low carb diet and had ironically had just purchased a big bag of them from Costco. Even at only 2 net carbs for about 9 nuts they had a buttery good flavor but a little too bland right out of the bag for my liking. Turns out a little lovin’ from the oven transforms the nut-seeds into a rightfully righteous super snacker!

Butter and Brazil NutsFoodie Tips

❤  These nut chips are super-easy to make and eat! You might just want to go ahead and multiply the recipe so you’ll have extra for impromptu snacking or pop-ins. Jarred and wrapped with a ribbon these also make great gifts!

❤  This is a simple recipe that literally heightens the flavors that you use for seasoning. The next time we make these (oh, and we’ll be making them again) we’re eyeing some cayenne (for heat) and for herbs thyme, oregano or rosemary. You can’t go wrong!

i. Time

Total prep: About 20 minutes.

Kirkland Organic Whole Brazil Nutsii. Ingredients

1 ½ cups  whole brazil nuts, shelled
2 tablespoons  unsalted butter, melted (my Grandmother “Nanny” insisted on Falfurrias)
½ teaspoon  seasoned salt*

* A word about seasoned salt: A family favorite for as long as I can remember is Lawry’s brand seasoned salt. It wasn’t until my post-college years when I was convinced my taste buds needed more “oomph” when I switched to Lawry’s seasoned salt with black pepper. That’s what I used for this recipe and it was amazing, as always!

Brazil Nuts On The Stovetopiii. What To Do

1. To Soften The Nuts
Place the Brazil nuts  in a medium-sized saucepan. Cover with water and over a medium-high heat bring things to a boil. Simmer 2-3 minutes then drain.

2. Make Nut Slivers
While still warm shave each nut lengthwise into thin slices with a paring knife. We left the skin on for extra flavor.

Brazil Nut Slivers Dotted With Butter3. Season & Bake
Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line a shallow baking pan with foil. Spread the Brazil nut slivers into the pan and sprinkle “dots” of butter all over them. Lightly season and bake until lightly browned and crisp for about 12 minutes, stirring or shaking along the way (about every 2-3 minutes). With each stirring I added a little bit more seasoning until I arrived at my preferred taste.

Brazil Nut Chips In A Baking Pan4. Enjoy
Remove the prepared nut chips from the oven and let them cool a bit. Dig in and store any leftovers in a container with a tightly-fitting cover. This just might be the perfect time to learn more about the Brazil nut with this article while you enjoy your newest culinary creation!

~ Patrick

Betty’s Son
Founder and “Nostalgic Food Blogger” of Betty’s Cook Nook

Brazil Nut Chips Recipe

Delicious! I can eat an entire 2-cup batch by myself!

More About This Recipe
I found the recipe recipe tucked in my Mom Betty’s Black Recipe Cookbook. From the looks of the yellowed paper and because older recipes came from the black recipe book closest to when my Mom and Dad married I’d say this recipe is from the 1950s or 1960s. 

Brazil Nut Chips Recipe

The Original Scan Of the Brazil Nut Chips Recipe From Mom’s Cookbook


pumpkin dump cake

Pumpkin Dump Cake Recipe by Betty's Cook NookA Bit Of Dump Cake History

The folks at Epicurious describe the dump cake as “the worst name in the history of desserts.” I, on the other hand, snickered when the name first graced my being. In fact it was more of a snortle of sorts.

The year was 2005 and my Cousin Julie had emailed me the dump cake recipe below that she was impressed with. Being one of the early bathroom humor pioneers (poo-oneers?) I simply replied: “you know I’ll try this because it has the word DUMP in it!” Well that email got filed away with good intentions and sadly forgotten. This year when I was missing my Cousin I went digital dumpster diving into my old email account and a few clicks later the recipe floated to the surface (pun intended).

Flashback: Dump Cake

Before we dive into this recipe I was curious the glorious origins of the dump cake. While some online posts said the first dump cake would send us to 1980, others threw me off track saying the dump cake actually went by other names, including “wacky cake.” For my purposes my culinary etymological research is purely of “dump cake.”

The Los Angeles Times Economy Cook Book No. 5 Dump CakeAs can be seen by the Google Books Ngram Viewer let’s have a peek at the usage of dump cake over time. There it was – nestled on page 50 of 1917’s The Los Angeles Times Economy Cook Book No. 5: Practical and Economical Recipes by Skilled Cooks – this nugget for Dump Cake. Albeit the recipe instructions read more like a conventional cake (think more effort), the origins of the name take us back to when my Grandmother “Nanny” was 17. You can click this link and see for yourself! I can’t wait to let this useless trivia factoid rip at my next party!

What’s even more interesting is I discovered I lived at the trifecta of perfection – when word usage of dump cake and two sidekicks near and dear to my heart – “pac man” and “bean roll” – were in pure alignment. The year was 1979 and little did I know I was living the glory days. Who knows if this moment in time will rise again?
Google Books Ngram Viewer Dump Cake Pac Man Bean RollFoodie Tips

❤  I have to admit I was leery that this cake would come together. But just as the name implies the magic of the dump cake took over once it was in the hot oven and things began to mingle.

❤  Striving to curtail holiday overeating (which later proved to be a farce) we split the recipe into three greased 9″ round foil pans. I was nervous if they would turn out OK and they did! We gave two cakes to unsuspecting neighbors who said they enjoyed it greatly.

i. Time

Total prep: About 60 minutes.

ii. Ingredients

29 ounce can  Libby’s 100% pure canned pumpkin
12 ounce can  evaporated milk
cage free eggs
1 cup  sugar
1 teaspoon  salt
3 teaspoons  cinnamon
1 box  Duncan Hines classic yellow cake mix
1 cup  Texas pecans, chopped
¾ cup  unsalted butter, melted (my Grandmother “Nanny” insisted on Falfurrias)
to serve  whipped cream or ice cream (optional)

iii. What To Do

1. Preheat oven to 350°F degrees.

2. Mix the first six ingredients until well blended and pour the batter into a 9″ X 13″ greased pan.

Making Pumpkin Dump Cake

3. Sprinkle cake mix on top and then sprinkle that with pecans.

Pumpkin Dump Cake

4. Pour melted butter or margarine over top. Bake for 50 minutes.



Serve warm with whipped cream or ice cream. My Cousin Julie topped her cake with dulce de leche and said it was really good!

~ Patrick

Betty’s Son
Founder and “Nostalgic Food Blogger” of Betty’s Cook Nook

Let’s have a peek at some vintage Libby’s pumpkin ads:

October 1986 Great Pumpkin Cookie Recipe

Libby's 1964 Pumpkin Pie Ad Typo

Libby's Pumpkin Life Magazine Ad 1950


texas kolaches

How To Make Texas-Czech KolachesWhere Old Meets New

In the golden days of past my Mom “Betty” subscribed to Southern Living magazine and to this day, so do I. 

In SL’s most recent September 2020 issue they gave claim to the seven “Cooks of the Year” for their culinary innovations. I, too, love innovators for without them we’d be eating the same thing day after day… (fancy some porridge and toast?). But I will continue the foodie fight to honor those in the rear view mirror – the ones who fed our bellies when we were kids. Our Mothers, Grandmothers, and best of all – the ones likely before we can remember. These are the true culinary geniuses who made mealtime a favorite time without the aid of modern kitchen contraptions like microwaves, silicon utensils, immersion blenders, air fryers, and bluetooth ovens (I’m guilty of owning all these items)!

The Missing Piece

With more than 200 recipes here at BettysCookNook.com, the Southern Living kolache recipe fills a missing puzzle piece in my Mom’s culinary legacy; Mom’s kolache filling recipes (below) had been in her cookbook without their much needed pastry crust recipe until now! And since kolaches hold a near and dear place in the heart of Texans right up there with queso, big hair, and cowboy boots you have plenty of recipe ideas thanks to my Mom’s 3 filling recipes below – apricot, prune, and cottage cheese. In addition, there’s a streusel recipe to top things off!

Thanks to Southern Living Magazine I’m gratefully able to connect the past with the present. I hope you try and enjoy this recipe! Thank you, Lydia Faust, for sharing a slice of the great days with the rest of us! #HatsOff

While I usually veer off the I-35 interstate in the city of West, Texas for some of the world famous savory Czech Stop kolaches (bless you, jalapeño, sausage and cheese) let’s not forget their sweet kolache friends! I didn’t make all 3 fillings but the apricot filling was my first pick and it was dy-no-mite! I’d suggest starting with that one first.

This is a recipe for those with a little kitchen grit. I found kolaches much easier to make than homemade tamales (which had me sore for 2 days) or puffy tacos (Joe does most of that work) and you’ll have plenty of leftovers to share with friends and family. I’ll never bat an eye at how much these cost as I found hand making these to be a labor of pure love.

Foodie Tips

❤  This kolache recipe made 53 of the yeasty delights and ironically Mom’s apricot filling recipe filled them all to the last scoop!

❤  It’s customary for the kolaches to touch while baking; they often come out of the oven square-ish. I had giant stainless baking sheet pans so my kolaches came out round. Despite the tweaked shape they tasted the same!

❤  To form the hole we wrapped a spice jar with saran wrap to prevent the dough from sticking and pressed away (shown).

❤  I remember growing-up my Mom’s friend “Miss Joyce” called some savory pigs in a blankey “koblasniky.” Turns out she wasn’t kidding – the sweet treats are kolaches and the savory friends koblasniky. I was happy to confirm in this article. My Moravian ancestors would be proud I stand corrected! Here in Texas folks just refer to anything wrapped in the billowy dough kolaches and we all know what’s involved.

How To Make Kolaches

i. Time

Total prep: Your entire morning. (includes 60 minutes for baking)

ii. Ingredients

for the kolache pastry:
1 ½ tablespoons  active dry yeast
½ cup  warm water (105°F115°F)
¼ cup  unsalted butter (my Grandmother “Nanny” insisted on Falfurrias)
¼ cup  vegetable shortening (Crisco)
1 ½ cups  lukewarm whole milk (100°F105°F)
6 cups  all-purpose flour, divided, plus more for the prep surface
¾ cup  evaporated milk
⅓ cup  granulated sugar
1 tablespoon  kosher salt
2 large  cage free eggs
1 large  cage free egg yolk
5 tablespoons (or more)  unsalted butter, melted

for the apricot filling:
1 pound  dried apricots
¾ cup  granulated sugar
3 tablespoons  unsalted butter

for the streusel:
½ cup   granulated sugar
½ cup   flour
½ cup   butter, melted

iii. What To Do

1.
Sprinkle the yeast over warm water and stir to combine. Set aside. Place the butter and shortening in a large microwavable bowl, and microwave on high until melted, about 1 minute. Stir well to combine. Whisk in the lukewarm whole milk and yeast mixture.

2. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Sift 3 cups of the flour over mixture. Add the evaporated milk, sugar, salt, eggs, and egg yolk. Beat on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Remove the whisk attachment and replace it with a dough hook. Gradually add the remaining 3 cups flour; beat on medium speed until dough is smooth, about 2 minutes. Let the dough sit at room temperature for 5 minutes; then beat it on medium-high speed until the dough is elastic and very smooth, about 10 minutes.

Kolache Dough Rising3. Brush the top of dough with 1 tablespoon of the melted butter. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise until it has doubled in size, about 1 hour. Punch the dough down and cover it again and let the dough rise until doubled, about 30 more minutes.

Making Kolaches

4. Generously flour a work surface. Gently roll dough out to a 1-inch-thick rectangle (about 18 x 14 inches). Using a 2-inch round cutter, cut out circles, and place them 1 inch apart on parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Brush the tops with 2 tablespoons of the melted butter. Let rise in a warm place until almost doubled in bulk, about 20 minutes.

How To Make A Kolache

Texas Kolache
Apricot Kolache Filling5. While the dough rises, let’s make the apricot kolache filling. Prepare the apricots according to the package directions (I boiled mine in water for about 10 minutes then drained the water). Add the sugar and butter. I used an immersion blender to get things soft but I was careful not to over process it; you still want it a bit thick (not like apple sauce) and a few chunks here and there are OK. Set the filling aside.

6. Let’s continue on by making the posypka (streusel topping): Use a pastry cutter (suggested) or your fingers to combine the sugar, flour, and butter to form a crumbly texture. Store this in the refrigerator until ready to use.

7. Back to the kolaches! Make one small indentation in the center of each dough circle (see tip above or you can use your fingers), and fill each with about 1 tablespoon of the filling. Sprinkle each kolache with 1 to 2 teaspoons of the posypka. Let the kolaches rise until they’ve doubled in size, 20 to 30 minutes.
Kolache with Apricot Filling
8. Preheat your oven to 350°F. Position racks in top third and lower third of oven. Bake the kolaches until golden brown, about 20 minutes, rotating baking sheets between top and bottom racks halfway through the baking time. Remove from oven. Brush the kolaches with the remaining 2 tablespoons melted butter and transfer them to wire racks. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.

Apricot Kolaches

You may be tired by this point so sit back and enjoy a few bites of the sweet life!

~ Patrick

Betty’s Son
Founder and “Nostalgic Food Blogger” of Betty’s Cook Nook

Apricot Filling Recipe For Kolaches

A Scan Of Mom’s Original Apricot Kolache Filling Recipe

Prune Filling Recipe For Kolaches

A Scan Of Mom’s Prune Kolache Filling Recipe

Cottage Cheese Filling Recipe For Kolaches

A Scan Of Mom’s Cottage Cheese Kolache Filling Recipe

Streusel Topping Recipe

A Scan Of Mom’s Streusel Topping Recipe


mrs. copple’s banana bread

Mrs. Copples Banana Bread RecipeBreadwinners

Back in 2012 I posted this banana nut loaf cake recipe (which is really just banana bread, disguised with the “loaf” part). It has remained a family favorite to this day and I look forward to making muffins out of my Aunt’s recipe on our next go.

My friend Suzanne will be delighted to hear that Mrs. Copple’s banana bread recipe doesn’t call for nuts (shorthand for pecans, here in Texas). She and I continuously arm wrestle over whether banana bread should or should not have nuts and since I’m the fingers behind this post we know that “with nuts” wins. Yay me! But I will admit – this banana bread packs a great taste. Even if the nuts were forgotten! 🤠

Regardless of nuts and butter (or no nuts and margarine), I think we can agree we’re “breadwinners” when we enjoy a baked banana slice of home sweet home.

Foodie Tips

❤  You won’t see a bread picture in this post. Why? We decided to gift some of this sweetness to neighbors and thought muffins would be more portable than slices of bread. This recipe yielded 6 large (jumbo) muffins and 12 mini muffins (yielding 18 in total). For the large muffins you’ll cook about 25 minutes at 350°F; the minis were ready in 15 minutes.

❤  In addition to arm wrestling over nuts or no nuts, you can add butter vs. margarine to the list! We used butter in this recipe vs. margarine. Sorry, Mrs. Copple! During the 2020 COVID-19 lockdown all we stock is unsalted butter so that’s what we used. There are some culinary differences between butter and margarine that you might want to read more about in this post.

❤  I thought it interesting lemon juice was called for to prevent turning the bananas brown (the bananas wouldn’t be sitting out for a long period of time). But I’m not willing to risk a brown banana bread so in the lemon juice went!

❤  To serve, my favorite way to enjoy a bread or muffin is “toasty warm” with a smear of plain Philadelphia Whipped Cream Cheese on top! There’s nothing better!

banana bread mini muffins

i. Time

Total prep: About 40-75 minutes (depending on whether you make mini muffins or bread)

ii. Ingredients

1 stick  |  margarine or unsalted butter (my Grandmother “Nanny” always insisted on Falfurrias brand butter)
1 cup  |  sugar
|  cage free eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon  |  baking soda
1 teaspoon  |  baking powder
1 teaspoon  |  salt
2 cups  |  flour, sifted
|  bananas
a tad  |  fresh lemon juice

the best banana bread muffins

iii. What To Do

1. In a mixing bowl cream the margarine (or butter) and sugar together.

2. Add the room temperature eggs and beat well.

3. In a separate bowl add the baking soda, baking powder, and salt to the flour.

4. Mash the bananas and sprinkle them lightly with a squeeze or two of fresh lemon juice to keep them from turning brown.

5. Mix together the flour mixture and the creamed butter/sugar mixture.

6. With a spatula hand mix-in the bananas and your banana batter is ready!

7. Decide whether or not you’re making bread or muffins. Prepare your chosen baking pan (we used nonstick spray) and fill ¾ full.

8. Bake for 50-60 minutes for the bread; about 25 minutes for jumbo-sized muffins; or 15 minutes for the mini muffins… all until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

~ Patrick

Betty’s Son
Founder and “Nostalgic Food Blogger” of Betty’s Cook Nook

A Scan Of My Mom “Betty’s” Coveted Banana Bread Recipe (in her handwriting)


lela’s grits

True Grits

Grits were born in the 16th century thanks to the Muskogee Native American tribe of Tennessee, Alabama, and Georgia.

Flash forward 400-ish years later and we’re still enjoying cornmeal that’s often served with a seemingly endless assortment of sweet and savory sidekicks.

Because grits don’t have much flavor all by themselves, they are super versatile adopting the taste of their foodie sidekicks like bacon, cheese, onions, shrimp, sausage and more. Butter is a given! I’ve included some ingredient options below, although Lela’s original recipe just called for garlic cheese. Sometimes the simple foods provide the greatest comfort!

My orientation to grits was via the 1970s greasy spoon diner sitcom Alice. I spent many hours watching Flo Castleberry find a delightfully southern and spunky way of telling people to “Kiss my grits!” Here’s a video compilation of some of her sassiest moments:

Truth be told – one bite in and you may just kiss these grits. I enjoyed reminiscing over this dish and hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Foodie Tips

❤  Garlic cheese roll? Yeah, you won’t likely readily find it at the grocery store. This good ol’ classic has been discontinued by Kraft but you can score a way to make your own Garlic Cheese Roll at home with this Betty’s Cook Nook recipe (scroll to the bottom for the bonus cheese roll recipe).

❤  This pimiento cheese recipe tastes great in lieu of the garlic cheese roll.

❤  I discovered a recent Southern Living magazine article with some ingredient options to enjoy grits three unique ways: Option 1: Scrambled eggs, cubed ham, shredded cheddar cheese, halved cherry tomatoes, and chopped fresh chives. Option 2: Fried egg, cubed chorizo, cubed avocado, crumbled queso fresco (fresh Mexican cheese), and hot sauce. Option 3: Poached egg, crumbled bacon, sautéed spinach, and shaved Parmesan cheese.

i. Time

Total prep: About 25 minutes

ii. Ingredients

3 cups  |  boiling water
1 cup  |  grits
to taste  |  salt
1 roll  |  garlic cheese roll
1 stick  |  unsalted butter (my Grandmother always insisted on Falfurrias brand butter)
|  cage free eggs
to serve  |  cheddar cheese, shredded
to garnish  |  bacon, crumbled (optional)
to garnish  |  green onions, sliced (optional)

iii. What To Do

1. In a saucepan bring the water to a boil.

2. Slowly stir the grits into the boiling water. Reduce heat to medium-low and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally for 4-5 minutes until thickened.

3. Add the salt, garlic cheese, butter and eggs and continue cooking until everything melts, about 2-3 minutes. The cheese should cool the grits a bit – you’ll want to make sure you don’t scramble your eggs!

Optional step: We transferred the grits into a buttered casserole dish, topped the grits with the shredded cheddar cheese and baked it at 350°F for 10 minutes to give the grits a cheesy crust up top.

4. To serve (if using): Sprinkle the bacon and sliced green onions on top and enjoy!

~ Patrick

Betty’s Son
Founder and “Nostalgic Food Blogger” of Betty’s Cook Nook

A Scan Of Mom’s Original Grits Recipe Card

Who is Lela?

When I was growing up Lela Swinny lived at 3006 Northridge in San Antonio just 2 doors around the corner from my family’s home at 2927 Trailend.

The Swinny family was a delightful bunch of folks and my family spent almost as much time at their house as our own so naturally “fooding” was a part of the times our two families shared.

Mom’s dear friend “Lela” taught me many things ~ the joy of laughing, how to swim in their awesome pool, and how to cook a memorable breakfast treat called “Egg In A Nest,” which is also posted here at Betty’s Cook Nook.

True family fact: Back in the 1970s Lela was throwing out an old desk that caught my Mom’s eye. A coat of red paint later and it was a cornerstone in my brother Tim’s red white and blue bedroom (it was around the time of our Country’s Bicentennial celebration so red white and blue was extra hot). In the 1990s I painted the desk black and it’s the desk where I author this cooking blog to this day, proving that Lela is still with us, heart and soul!

You’ll find a picture of Lela and me in the “old family photos” tab and you can search for her by name to connect with more of her spirited recipes here at Betty’s Cook Nook.

Cheers to two great friends – my Mom Betty and Lela!