Test Kitchen

Test Kitchen

I played test kitchen today with two new recipes from a Taste of Home Brunch Cookbook.  I altered the egg recipe a bit but made the raspberry coffee cake as printed.  Both turned out great.

Chupa is sniffing out something yummy!



We ate by the fire and enjoyed egg strudels, hushpuppies, fruit, sausage and raspberry coffee cake.   I couldn’t find my phone and my camera batteries were dead so the next food photos I am using are the ones from the Taste of Home Website.  All credit goes to them and their obviously skilled photo stylists.

First up is the egg strudel.  It called for ham but I omitted it and added an extra egg.  Olivia didn’t want the ham and I wasn’t too crazy about it either.   Another change I made was out of necessity.  It calls for 1/2 cup of the filling to be rolled in the phyllo dough, but I used 1/3 cup and made 8 instead of 6.  It was too difficult to roll 1/2 cup in the phyllo dough.   Here is the original recipe as submitted by Jo Groth of Plainfield, Iowa.


Ham and Cheese Breakfast Strudels

  • 3 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup shredded Swiss cheese
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 pound ground fully cooked ham (about 3/4 cup)
  • 6 sheets phyllo dough (14×9-inch size)
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley


  1. In a small saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Stir in flour until smooth; gradually add milk. Bring to a boil; cook and stir 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in cheeses and salt.
  2. In a large nonstick skillet, melt remaining butter over medium heat. Add eggs to pan; cook and stir until almost set. Stir in ham and cheese sauce; heat through. Remove from heat.
  3. Preheat oven to 375°. Place one sheet of phyllo dough on a work surface. (Keep remaining phyllo covered with plastic wrap and a damp towel to prevent it from drying out.) Brush with melted butter. Sprinkle with 2 teaspoons bread crumbs. Fold in half lengthwise; brush again with butter. Spoon 1/2 cup filling onto phyllo about 2 in. from a short side. Fold side and edges over filling and roll up. Brush with butter. Repeat with remaining phyllo, butter, bread crumbs and filling.
  4. Place on a greased baking sheet; sprinkle each with 1 teaspoon cheese and 1 teaspoon parsley. Bake 10-15 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately.
    Freeze option: After topping strudels with cheese and parsley, freeze unbaked on a waxed paper-lined baking sheet until firm. Transfer to a freezer container; return to freezer. To use, bake strudels as directed, increasing time to 30-35 minutes or until heated through and golden brown.
    Yield: 6 servings.

The next new recipe I tried was submitted by Debbie Johnson of Jefferson City, Missouri.  The only change I made to this recipe was the fact that my nine-inch cake pan was on top of the others and I didn’t want to dig for the eight-inch one.  It worked out beautifully in the 9-inch pan and filled the cake stand better so I will probably continue to make it with that sized pan.  I shortened the baking time approximately 5 minutes to accommodate the larger pan and thus thinner cake.


Raspberry Almond Coffee Cake

  • 1 cup fresh raspberries
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds
  • ICING:
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons 2% milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Additional raspberries, optional
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a small bowl, toss raspberries with brown sugar.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In another bowl, whisk egg, sour cream, melted butter and vanilla until blended. Add to flour mixture; stir just until moistened (batter will be thick).
  3. Transfer half of the batter to a greased and floured 8-in. round baking pan. Top with raspberry mixture. Spoon remaining batter over raspberries; sprinkle with almonds.
  4. Bake 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool.
  5. In a small bowl, mix confectioners’ sugar, milk and vanilla until smooth; drizzle over top. Serve warm. If desired, serve with additional raspberries. Yield: 8 servings.

And now I’m heading out to the yard to spread some grass seed in some bare spots.  I’m about ready to install artificial turf or just liberally spread pinestraw EVERYWHERE. I’ve seen people do that in my neighborhood.  Their whole front yard is trees and subsequently underneath all that shade is bales of spread pinestraw.    The rest of us grass warriors pass by and smugly acknowledge that they have given up and don’t care about their curb appeal.  Ha!

Well, I’m just about to that point and don’t care how many smug looks I get.  Bermuda grass does NOT grow in the shade that my yard has in abundance.  It makes for a pretty view out my windows as shown below  but it also makes for a pitiful lawn.  So, I’m out to give it one more try to help the lawn, but I don’t hold out much hope. It is always such a waste of money.   I might as well open my wallet and dump the dollars directly on the lawn.  At least they would be green!!!!


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2 Responses to Test Kitchen

  1. Merry Carol April 24, 2016 at 6:58 pm #

    I think I’d love the raspberry coffee cake. It looks delicious!

    • Julie April 24, 2016 at 7:16 pm #

      It was very good. I was surprised that the recipe was successful the first time. Usually I have to try them a few times before I am satisfied with the results.

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