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Turn your kitchen into a salami source

Have you thought about making homemade salami? Many cooks have been doing so for years. The essential ingredient, Morton's Tender Quick Salt, a curing salt, is sometimes difficult to find, but Judie Coar of Largo has ordered it online at Ground beef is combined with seasoning ingredients, kneaded and refrigerated for four days, during which it is kneaded once each day. Then the salami is shaped into rolls and baked for eight hours.

Corn bread can be prepared a number of ways, and this quick bread is a perfect accompaniment for soup, pork and just about anything else. Lou Kinsey sampled corn bread with diced red, yellow and green peppers in Indiana and asked for a recipe. Nancy Eggert has shared one made with Cheddar cheese and chopped tomatoes, green pepper and onion. She also sends a Tex-Mex recipe that includes cream-style corn, Cheddar cheese and chopped jalapeno peppers or green chilies.

Evelyn Winslow sends two favorite corn bread recipes, too. One is made with cream-style corn and chopped scallions, but, Evelyn notes, diced bell peppers can be substituted for the scallions. Her second recipe makes a large pan of moist, flavorful corn bread that serves a crowd nicely.

For: Kathy Staneh of Spring Hill

From: Mary Petras of Clearwater

Recipe: Homemade Salami

Homemade Salami

5 pounds lean ground beef

4 teaspoons Morton's Tender Quick Salt

2{ teaspoons mustard seed

1{ teaspoons garlic powder

1{ teaspoons coarsely ground pepper

1 teaspoon hickory smoked salt

1{ teaspoons sausage and poultry seasoning

Combine spices. Put a layer of ground beef in a large bowl; sprinkle with a layer of spices; continue until all is used. Knead well and cover with plastic wrap and a lid. Refrigerate.

Knead well every day for four days. On the fourth day, knead and shape into four rolls, rolling tightly. Lay on a cookie sheet with sides; don't allow rolls to touch each other. Bake at 150 degrees for 4 hours. Change cookie sheet and bake 4 more hours.

Cool; roll in plastic wrap and foil. Refrigerate. May be stored in freezer for use as needed.

Note: For easier cleanup, we suggest lining a baking pan with heavy foil. Also, make sure your hands are well washed before kneading the meat and that the meat is properly stored in the refrigerator to prevent spoiling.

For: Lou Kinsey of St. Petersburg

From: Nancy Eggert of Dunedin

Recipe: Garden Corn Bread

Garden Corn Bread

2 eggs

1{ cups milk

2 cups Martha White self-rising corn meal mix

2 cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese (8 ounces)

1{ cups peeled, chopped tomatoes

1 cup chopped green pepper

\ cup chopped onion

Beat eggs in mixing bowl. Add remaining ingredients; blend well. Pour batter into greased 9-inch square baking pan. Bake at 400 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before serving. Best served warm. Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Note: Fresh garden vegetables make this casserole bread perfect with grilled pork chops.

Tex-Mex Corn Bread

1 egg

1 cup Martha White self-rising corn meal mix

1 8{-ounce can cream-style corn

{ cup milk

2 tablespoons vegetable oil or melted shortening

1 teaspoon sugar

1 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese (4 ounces)

2 tablespoons chopped jalapeno peppers or chopped green chilies

Beat egg in large mixing bowl. Add remaining ingredients; blend well. Pour batter into greased 8-inch square baking pan.

Bake at 450 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in pan 10 minutes before serving; corn bread will be very moist. Makes 6 to 9 servings. Especially good with a bowl of bean soup.

Note: Martha White yellow self-rising corn meal mix may be used in this recipe.

From: Evelyn Winslow of Spring Hill

Recipe: Double Corn Bread

Double Corn Bread

1 cup yellow cornmeal

1 cup all-purpose flour

\ cup sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

{ teaspoon salt

\ teaspoon plus [ teaspoon coarse-ground pepper, divided

3 scallions, chopped (about { cup), divided

6 tablespoons margarine, divided

1 8{-ounce can cream-style sweet corn

} cup milk

1 egg

2 tablespoons chopped parsley

1 teaspoon grated lime zest

Combine cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and \ teaspoon pepper. Add scallions (reserve 1 tablespoon).

Melt 4 tablespoons margarine; stir in corn, milk and egg. Stir into the cornmeal mixture until well blended. Put into 8-inch square pan that has been sprayed with vegetable spray; bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes until golden and toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes. Remove from pan and cool on rack. Combine 2 tablespoons softened margarine with [ teaspoon pepper, parsley, lime zest and reserved scallions; spread on corn bread. Serve warm.

Note: Use chopped bell peppers instead of scallions if you wish.

Corn Bread

2 cups yellow cornmeal

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup sugar

2 tablespoons baking powder

{ teaspoon salt

2{ cups milk

1 cup vegetable oil

5 large eggs

In large bowl, mix together the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.

In a second bowl, whisk together milk, oil and eggs until just blended. Stir in the cornmeal mixture until just blended. Pour into a greased 9- by 13-inch baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes until top is golden. Test with a toothpick. Let bread cool slightly in pan on wire rack. Cut into desired sizes and serve warm.

Recipe requests

Pam Kennedy of Land O'Lakes often enjoys the bourbon chicken served at the Golden Inn Chinese restaurant in the Land O'Lakes/Lutz area. Pam writes that it is regularly part of the buffet, and she is hooked. She would like to know how to prepare it at home. Can you help?

Eve MacKay of Homosassa Springs writes that her aunt gave her a chocolate cake recipe more than 50 years ago, but the recipe was lost in moving. Eve remembers the ingredients _ butter, sugar, flour, sour cream, eggs, unsweetened chocolate and vanilla _ but not the amounts of each. A single recipe used a loaf pan, and a double recipe used a tube pan. If a round or square layer cake pan was used, the cake would fall. If you can complete the recipe for Eve, please share it.

You Asked for It is a reader mail column. If you have a cooking question or the answer to someone else's question, write to: You Asked for It, the Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731. Be sure to include your full name, city and phone number.