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“On Saturdays, Mom would pack us five kids into the car, and we’d drive into the country looking for wild apple trees alongside the road. With the apples we picked, she’d bake this strudel, our traditional fall Sunday-morning breakfast.” —Beth Dauenhauer, Pueblo, Colorado
Meet the Cook: With my dad being a farmer who grew them, sweet potatoes have graced our table for as long as I can recall. These, though, resulted from an experiment at a church bake sale when we had excess pastry. People couldn't get enough!
-Marilyn Moseley, Toccoa, Georgia
If your children or grandchildren are looking for a perfect gift to give their teachers, these may be the answer.
Dress up each tart with a paper doily, place on a colorful plastic or paper plate and cover with clear wrap. Secure with a festive bow or a gift card and tag. And don't forget to include the recipe for the tart. When I gave this as a gift to each of the secretaries at the high school where I work, it soon became a hit with their families, too!
I AM of Czechoslovakian descent, and baking kolaches is my specialty. These sweet yeast buns with fruit or poppy seed filling are a true Czech tradition. They are also popular in other Slavic nations, which sometimes use the spellings kolacky or kolachke. From a young age, I’ve enjoyed baking. But it wasn’t until we retired from farming and moved to town that I started making large quantities of kolaches. The Cherry Kolaches recipe I’m sharing reflects my filling preference. But I also make apricot, apple, pineapple, prune and poppy seed kolaches. I make my fillings from scratch, but you can easily use canned filling instead.
My twin sister and I (we're 18) love to bake together, and this was one of the first yeast breads we tried. Any day becomes a special occasion when these rich buttery twists are on the menu! But plan ahead...the dough needs to rise overnight.
-Charys Rockey, Rochelle, Texas
Banana and chocolate is such a irresistible combination that I make this quick dessert often. I sometimes sprinkle on a dash of sea salt. You can also top with any leftover butter and brown sugar mixture.—Thomas Faglon, Somerset, New Jersey