Mennonite Girls Can Cook is a collection of recipes which were posted daily for a period of ten years from 2008 to 2018. We have over 3,000 delicious recipes that we invite you to try. The recipes can be accessed in our recipe file by category or you can use the search engine.

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Potato and Farmer Sausage Casserole

I remember how Lovella thought she might lose a “whack of readers” when she posted a recipe that called for farmer sausage. It’s funny how this smoked pork sausage seems to find its way into all kinds of recipes, where it’s readily available. If you prefer, you can substitute it with smoked ham. This is really just a version of scalloped potatoes and adding the meat makes it an easy family meal. I got the recipe from a friend, Karen, a number of years ago, but have changed up the sauce amounts a bit. If you use a few more potatoes, just double the first 5 ingredients of the sauce.

Ingredients:

  • 6 small / med. potatoes, peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 - 3/4 link farmer sausage, peeled and sliced

Sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ - 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup


  1. Arrange potatoes and farmer sausage in layers in greased 8 cup casserole dish. 
  2.  Melt butter; blend in flour, salt and milk gradually, stirring constantly. 
  3. Add cheese and soup, stirring until sauce cooks. 
  4. Pour over potatoes and sausage. 
  5.  Bake at 350 F for 1 1/4 – 1 1/2 hours. Serves 6

Cabbage Roll Soup


 I'd describe this soup as half way between Borscht and Hamburger Soup. And for me.....soda crackers with butter are a given when serving a tomato based soup....it's a taste from childhood for me. 
(This recipe if made as directed is gluten free)
Ingredients:

  • 1 pound lean ground beef or ground turkey
  • 1 medium onion, diced fine
  • 1 cup celery, sliced fine
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped fine
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 cups low sodium beef broth ( gluten free)
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 4 cups canned diced tomatoes 
  • 1/2 cup uncooked brown rice ( I use Kokuho Rose gourmet sticky brown rice, which is wheat and gluten free)
  • 2 cups cabbage, finely chopped (or more)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
Method:
  1. Fry ground beef in large soup pot over medium heat breaking up the ground beef as it fries to make it very fine.
  2. Once beef is half way cooked through add the onion, celery and parsley. Continue to cook meat and vegetables until onions are translucent. 
  3. Add water, broth, diced tomatoes and the spices and bring to a light boil. 
  4. Immediately add rice and cabbage. Turn to a low simmer and allow soup to cook for an hour, but it's even better if you leave it too cook for several hours for all the flavours to combine.
Note: This soup will be quite thick. If you like a less thick soup add an extra cup of water. 
If you don't have tomato sauce substitute with a can of tomato soup.

Portzelky (New Year Fritters)



By the sound of the name, I imagine that these New Years fritters were adopted from our Ukrainian roots. My own mother was not in the habit of making these, but the family I married into was, so I chose this recipe many years ago, submitted by a Mrs. J. H. Peters to the Mennonite Treasury of Recipes. The trick is to make sure that the oil is the right temperature, so it is good if you can use an electric pan or fryer where you can set it. This recipe makes 3 dozen.


Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups raisins
  • 1/2 cup prunes cut into small pieces
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 3 egg whites, beaten stiff
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons instant yeast
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
1 litre Canola oil (approx) for frying



Method:
  1. Rinse raisins with boiling water to plump
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine milk, water, salt, sugar, soda, raisins and prunes.
  3. Combine flour, baking powder and yeast, adding some to the liquids.
  4. Stir egg yolks into batter and then add the rest of the dry ingredients to make a heavy batter which will be rather stiff.
  5. Fold in beaten egg whites with spatula
  6. Cover and let rise until double in size. (half to one hour)
  7. Using two regular tablespoons (one for scooping and one for scraping) drop into hot oil (about 375° F or 190° C), turning over once and frying until brown. I also like to use a cast iron for deep frying. Pop in a few kernels of popcorn, once they pop, you know the oil is hot enough. 
  8. Scoop into a paper towel lined pan and roll in sugar while still warm.
Happy New Year!

Turkey Enchiladas



 Today is Thanksgiving Day in the United States and many of us will be gathering around the table with family and friends to have our traditional meal of Turkey with all the fixings and side dishes that our families enjoy. For dessert there will be pumpkin pie and other favorites. Over the next few days we might wonder what to do with the leftover turkey. Here is one idea for those leftovers.

  • Flour or Corn tortillas
  • Shredded cooked turkey
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Refried or whole beans (black, ranch or pinto)
  • Enchilada or Ranchero Sauce

Take one flour or corn tortilla at a time and fill with shredded leftover turkey, a little shredded cheese and refried or whole beans.  Fold and place seam side down in a casserole dish side by side. Cover with your favorite sauce and more cheese.  Bake in 350 degree oven for 30 minutes or until sauce bubbles well and cheese melts.

I used green enchilada sauce and flour tortillas because that is what I had on hand. Corn tortillas would lend themselves well to this recipe. A red ranchero sauce instead of the green enchilada sauce would be a moce alternative.You could also substitute your favorite salsa in place of the sauce for this simple turkey leftover dish. If you only need a quick meal for one, place ingredients in your choice of tortilla and heat in the microwave.


Happy Thanksgiving! We at MGCC are very thankful for all of you!

Linguini with Turkey and Sun Dried Tomatoes


After our family gathering on Thanksgiving weekend, I, like many of you, 
had leftover turkey in the fridge.
Here's what I did with it for supper last night.
  • linguini noodles to serve 4
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 a medium sized onion, sliced stem to root
  • 1 stalk celery sliced
  • 1/2 a yellow pepper cut into strips
  • 1 large clove garlic sliced into strips
  • 1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes (in oil) drained and cut into strips
  • 1 1/2 cups cut up cooked turkey
  • 2 tablespoon butter (I used leftover garlic butter)
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • salt and pepper
  • Parmesan cheese.

  1. Cook noodles to package directions until al dente.
  2. Drain and set aside.
  3. While noodles are cooking, saute vegetables in olive oil until soft but not browned.
  4. Add sundried tomatoes and turkey to the vegetables and set aside.
  5. Make cream sauce by melting butter, blending in flour and then adding milk.
  6. Cook, stirring often until thickened.
  7. Add  thyme and salt and pepper to taste.
  8. Add noodles to the saute' pan with the vegetables.
  9. Pour the cream sauce over the noodles and vegetables and toss to moisten.
  10. Add grated parmesan cheese  (be generous!) and serve.

Southwest Turkey (or chicken) Soup

Warm up a cold winter day with a bowl of steaming soup chocked full of healthy and satisfying ingredients...with a little kick of spice. I used homemade turkey stock for the base, and left over turkey. 
You can easily change up and use chicken or even a vegetable stock, adding a few more veggies and beans and omit the meat altogether. That's the beauty of many soups....use a recipe for a guide and make it your own by adding what you have on hand. Freezes well in large glass mason jars or freezer containers. Leave a little room in jars for expansion if freezing.
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 2 large cloves of garlic, minced
  • 4 cups turkey stock, or alternative of chicken or vegetable stock
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 can tomato soup
  • 2 cups chopped fresh tomatoes
  • 1 113g (14oz) green chilies
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1 540 ml (19 oz)can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cups cooked rice, brown or white
  • 2 cups turkey, chopped fine, or use chicken or extra vegetables in place of turkey
  • 2 tablespoons taco seasoning powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon lime juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Place oil in a large soup pot and heat. Add onions and garlic. Saute for 3-4 minutes.
  2. Add stock and water to pot. Stir in tomato soup. Bring to a slow boil.
  3. Add remaining ingredients. Stir and turn down to a medium/low.
  4. Cook soup for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Adding salt and pepper as needed. If you want it spicier, add more seasoning powder.

Turkey Pot Pies in Puff Pastry


Maybe you still have some left over cooked turkey in your freezer to try these for a ladies' lunch. These fancy turkey puffs are something my mom made for our engagement party and stand out in my memory because she rarely made something from a package. I think the recipe may have been on the Tenderflake Patty Shells box and must have looked good to her. I do not have that original recipe, but have re-created it according to memory and taste. 

Ingredients for 6 shells:
  • 1 pkg Tenderflake Patty Shells (frozen)
  • 1/3 cup onion, chopped fine
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp flour
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 3/4 tsp better than bouillon or 1/2 bouillon cube (chicken)
  • 1 - 1 1/2 cups cooked turkey, cubed
  • 1 cup petite peas, steamed 
Method:
  1. Bake patty shells at 400 F for about 20 - 25 minutes, until nice golden in color. Gently remove lid and remove any layers inside that appear wet. Discard them. Leave shells on cooling rack.
  2. In saucepan, cook onion in butter until soft. 
  3. Over low/medium heat, stir in flour and then slowly add milk, a little at a time, stirring to make a white sauce. Add chicken bouillon seasoning.
  4. Stir in turkey and peas. This filling should be a thick consistency. If needed, add more turkey.
  5. The shells are best if served fresh on day of, filled with hot filling and warmed in oven for 5 minutes. Filled patties can be reheated if served next day.

Easy Turkey Pot Pie

This is an easy to make Turkey Pot Pie. I used our leftover turkey and turkey broth that was frozen from our Thanksgiving meal. You of course can substitute chicken if that's what is in your freezer.

Ingredients:
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 Cup Onion chopped
  • 2 potatoes peeled and diced
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 4 Cups turkey Stock
  • 3 Cups turkey bite size pieces or shreds
  • 16 ounce package of frozen peas with carrots, thawed.
  • 1 prepared package of pie crust 
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1 egg for egg wash beaten with 1 tablespoon water

Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. In a large saute pan saute chopped onion and potatoes in melted butter till onion is translucent.
  3. Sprinkle flour over mixture and mix well and continue cooking for at least 2 minutes.
  4. Add all the turkey stock at once and heat to a boil.
  5. Add turkey and vegetables and mix well.
  6. Taste and season as needed.
  7. Empty the whole mixture into a 9 x 12 prepared casserole.
  8. Cover with the prepared pie crust. You might need to manipulate the crust to fit the dish.
  9. Brush the crust with the egg wash and place in preheated oven.
  10. Bake for 30 - 35 minutes or until crust is golden brown.


Turkey Vegetable Chowder

Although we are entering spring according to the calendar, it feels more like winter around here and so we are still enjoying our winter soups and fresh breads. I got this recipe for turkey chowder from a friend of mine many years ago, when she still had five children to cook for and this was one of their family favorites. What's not to like about it? It has become one of our family favorites as well and so I will pass it along for you to try.



Turkey Vegetable Chowder
  • 2 turkey legs
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 2 stalks celery (with tops), chopped
  • 4-5 potatoes, cubed
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 can cream-style corn
  • 1 can corn whole kernel corn
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup grated cheese
  • chopped fresh parsley for garnish
  1. Put turkey legs in a large stockpot with ten cups of water. Cover and bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 1 1/2 hours or until turkey is very tender. Using slotted spoon, remove turkey legs and set aside to cool.
  2. Add onion, potato, carrots and celery, salt, pepper, and basil...and simmer for about 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Cut turkey into bite sized pieces (discarding skin and bone) and add to the soup pot along with the corn.
  3. Using a wire whip, combine flour and milk and stir mixture into soup. Add grated cheese and cook, stirring constantly, until soup returns to a boil. Cook several minutes longer to melt cheese and thicken slightly. Sprinkle with parsley.

Notes: I buy turkey drumsticks in the frozen meat section of the grocer...and prefer the smoked turkey drumsticks. They are more pricey, but give the soup a bit a smokey flavour. I have also used turkey leftovers to make this soup. Fresh basil is a wonderful addition.


Buche de Noel with Mushroom Meringues


This simple to make chocolate cake roll is gluten free and whips up in no time. 
The instructions may look daunting but if you read through them you will see that they are easy to do.


You can serve this dessert simply by filling with whipped cream and dusting the top with powdered sugar or you can go all out and cover it with buttercream, garnish with chocolate bark and meringue mushrooms.


The meringue mushrooms are best made on a dry day and we haven't had many of them around the west coast so when we had a cold spell this last weekend I was delighted to make up a batch of meringues. 



Buche de Noel (Yule Log)

  • 6 eggs, separated
  • 3/4 cup sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • powdered/confectioners/icing sugar for dusting tea towel
  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.  
  2. Line a 10 X 15 inch jelly roll pan with parchment paper.  
  3. In a large bowl, beat egg yolks with 1/2 cup sugar until they are thick and pale.  Sift in the unsweetened cocoa powder, vanilla and salt and continue to beat until combined.
  4. With clean beaters,  beat egg whites in a large bowl with cream of tartar and slowly add 1/4 of the sugar.  Beat until stiff peaks form.
  5. Add a spoonful of the egg whites to the beaten egg yolk mixture and stir.  Add another spoonful and stir again.  This lightens up the batter.  Carefully fold the remaining egg whites carefully into the egg yolk mixture.
  6. Spread batter into prepared pan and bake 15 minutes.  Cake should spring back when lightly touched. 
  7. While the cake is baking, dust confectioner's/powdered sugar.  Flip the warm cake onto the powdered sugar and carefully remove parchment paper.
  8. Roll up from the long side.  Don't roll tight and be gentle.  Cool.


Filling for the Buche de Noel
  • 2 cups whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 packages whipping cream stabilizer (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. Whip together whipping cream and powdered sugar with the whipping cream stabilizer if you are using it.  If you don't have access to whipping cream stabilizer, you can use a heaping teaspoon of instant vanilla pudding but then eliminate the vanilla extract. Add in vanilla extract when soft peaks form.
  2. Gently unroll cooled cake.  Spread whipped cream evenly over cake and roll up again using the tea towel to help.
  3. Place seam side down on a platter.  Keep in mind that you will be cutting off a little piece of one end of the roll off to form a branch on the side.
Buttercream Frosting
  • 3/4 cup softened butter
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2 cups powdered/ confectioners/ icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla 
  • a bit of milk 
  1. Cream butter in a large bowl.  Sift together cocoa powder and icing sugar into the bowl.
  2. Beat together, adding vanilla and a bit of milk to make a spreadable consistency.
  3. Spread over the Buche de Noel.
  4. Cut a 3 or 4 inch piece of the cake roll off on a diagonal and place it on the side of the cake to make a branch.
Chocolate Bark
  • 1 cup chocolate chips or chocolate bar
  1. Melt slowly over low heat in a small pot or melt in the microwave, stirring every 15 seconds. 
  2. Spread the chocolate over parchment paper and chill until it hardens.
  3. Roll the parchment paper with the chocolate into a tube.  Unroll.  You should have bark like chocolate bark.
  4. Place chocolate bark all over the log.
  5. Sift with icing sugar.




Mushroom Meringues

  • 2 egg whites
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • cocoa powder
  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Beat egg whites in a large bowl with cream of tartar until foamy.  Add sugar a little bit at a time until stiff peaks form.
  3. Place a large hole piping tip into a piping bag. Fill with meringue.
  4. Pipe out meringue imagining the size of the mushroom cap you want to achieve.  Don't lift the tip until it is the size you want.  Stop pressure on the bag and lift up the tip.  After all the caps have been piped, use a damp finger to pat down the point.
  5. To make the mushroom stems.  Pipe stems, lifting the tip as you apply pressure.   Sift a tiny bit of cocoa powder over mushroom caps before baking. 
  6. Place in the oven.  Turn oven off after one minute and then leave in oven 2 hours.



Once meringues have cooled, cut a bit off the top of the stem.


Melt a bit more chocolate and spread the bottom of the mushroom cap with melted chocolate.



Put the stem on and allow to cool.  

Decorate your Buche de Noel with the mushrooms and use a bit of fake greenery to complete your masterpiece.  (mushrooms should remain at room temperature, so add them just before putting the Buche de Noel on display to serve)

Refrigerate until serving time.