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Melissa Morton

Wilmington, NC USA

Art articles written by Melissa Morton

November's "LIVE!" was quite an affair. EBSQ members and patrons gathered to swap gift idea's and recipes. There were so many, that we can not include them all but rest assured that there are holiday treats, easy casseroles for when company descends and festive ideas for gifts and decorations.

Linda Falge is going to make candy canes this year and she shared the recipe with us. Candy Canes

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup white corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 tsp. peppermint extract

Place first three ingredients in a sauce pan. Boil without stirring until the crack stage or until a few drops become brittle in cold water. Remove from heat. Add peppermint extract. Divide candy into two parts. To one part add red food coloring. Pour on buttered platters. When cool enough, pull each separately, then twist one around the other, forming into canes or sticks.

Victor McGhee 's Ham Marinade

Good as a glaze and on any type of pork. Ingredients:

  • Soy Sauce
  • Worcestershire Sauce
  • Honey
  • the Professor and Mary Ann (oops, sorry)
  • Thyme
  • Rosemary
  • Garlic
  • Applesauce
  • Pineapple Rings
  • OJ
  • White Vinegar
  • Whole Cloves

Do about an hour before baking:

1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup Worcestershire
1/2 cup honey

whisk these three together in a large bowl till you get a smooth consistency.

add: 1 tsp. ginger (I've only used dry so I don't know what that would be using fresh)
1/2 tsp fresh thyme (or dried) If you get the fresh, rub it in your hands before adding it to release the oils
1 tsp rosemary leaves (whatever you get from 1 sprig)
salt and pepper to taste
3 or 4 cloves of garlic, minced.
1/2 cup applesauce
Juice from large can of pineapple rings
splash of orange juice
1/2 cup white vinegar

pour it over the ham and marinade it for about an hour turning it over occasionally. If there's not enough liquid depending on the size of your ham, add more juice and Worcestershire to keep the balance, or you can simply add in 1 cup chicken broth. Don't dilute the ginger flavor that much. Remember to keep the main flavors in balance as best you can.

Score the skin on the ham in cross hatches. On each "square", press in a whole clove. Insert a Meat Thermometer as close to the bone as you can. Lay pineapple rings on the ham held in by toothpicks. Pour the mixture over the ham and roast at 375 degrees uncovered until the thermometer gets to 160 degrees. Baste it every half hour so it stays moist.

Melissa Morton-Woodall 's favorite Scottish Shortbread Ingredients:

  • 1 pound unsalted butter
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup white sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).

Cream butter and sugar with mixer. Add flour and mix with a wooden spoon. Use hands to thoroughly mix.

Press into a jelly roll pan. Prick to bottom all over with a fork being sure the fork hits the bottom and the pricks are close together.

Bake for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to 300 and continue to bake for 40 minutes more. Wait 2 minutes then cut into finger size bars. Cool thoroughly in pan.

You can add about a tsp of vanilla and/or cut the flour by about a cup.

Lori Rase Hall s Tater-Tot Casserole Tater Tot Casserole. Stuff you'll need

  • 1 lb. very Lean ground beef
  • large bag of generic frozen Tater Tots (they are like mini hashbrown potatoes-in a fun lil' cork shape!)
  • shredded cheese
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 1 cup milk
  • black pepper
  • 2 cans of Campbells Cream of Mushroom soup or Cream of Chicken Soup

*This time I used a can of Cream of Chicken/Mushroom and a can of Cheddar Cheese, because it was all I had

Chop up the onion, put in a pan with the beef and cook until meat is browned. Add some black pepper. Drain well and set aside.

TIP: Use as lean of beef as you can find.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the two cans of soup and aprox. 1 cup of milk. Some people don't use any milk, but I like to...

In a large 10" x 13" casserole dish (lightly oiled) dump out the whole bag of frozen Tater Tots. (Tip: I buy the generic Tator Tots -not the "Oreida" brand, because I've found they are a little less greasy when cooked and they have less fat grams)

Add the cooked beef & onion on top of the Tots...

Pour the soup mixture on top...

I kinda separate the tots a little so the soup gets down in around them...

Add the shredded cheese on top (I used a mexican cheese blend) Pop into a 400 degree PRE-Heated oven and bake for 45 mins. or so--- just make sure the tots are nice and crispy brown on top.

ALL DONE! It's not a fancy meal, by any means. It tastes like having a hamburger and fries.

The can of cheddar cheese soup tasted great! Kids love this recipe. That's it!

If you are looking for a project for gift giving or to decorate your own home, here are some ideas.

Lori Rase Hall 's Candle-ma-bobs

Well, we are waiting for our friends to arrive for a little get together here at our house tonight. Finger food and cocktails---should be a fun evening! While I'm waiting I wanted to show you this little project I did. I made these little votive candle-ma-bobs! Cool egh?

I took some glass baby food jars (that I've had for mixing paints) torn white tissue paper and some liquid starch. You tear or cut the tissue paper into small 2" x 1" aprox. pieces, and pour some starch into a small bowl. It's like doing papier mache. You just put some starch on the glass jar using your fingers, and keep layering the tissue paper til' you think it's covered the glass well. Keep it smooth by adding more starch. Let the jars dry naturally if you can...of course I was in a rush, so I helped mine along with a blow dryer.

After they were dry I tied some gold 1/4" fabric ribbon around the rim of the jar.

Another idea from Lori is to make magnets.

Take flat bottomed marbles like you find in the floral department. Cut an image to the size of the marble and glue between the marble and a round magnet.

You can print copies of your own work and cut interesting parts to show case or use wrapping paper, wall paper or any paper you like.

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