February / 2000
Kentucky Cooks

A dinner for dancing
by: Linda Allison-Lewis

  Cupid's month is here again-one of my favorite times of the year. I love memories of elementary school boxes decorated with bright pink and red tissue and paper doilies. Chocolates and candy hearts were given to special friends and family members. I still love to celebrate Valentine's Day by cooking a special meal for those I love. 

  The Buttermilk Chive Biscuits are filled with cheese and melt in your mouth. The Avocado Salad and Brussels Sprouts a L'orange are a great accompaniment to the Beef Tips with Mustard Cream over Rice. Finish off this great meal with a light cranberry ice and who knows-you may feel like dancing with that special someone!


BUTTERMILK CHIVE BISCUITS

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup chilled vegetable shortening
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1/4 cup Parmesan or Romano cheese, grated
1 cup fresh chives, snipped, or 1/2 cup dried chives
Milk

Preheat oven to 450°. Sift together flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Cut in the chilled shortening with a pastry blender or fork until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Make a well in the center and pour in buttermilk, cheeses, and chives. Blend well until mixture holds together. Knead on lightly floured board 5 or 6 times. Do not overwork. Pat dough to 1/2-inch thickness and cut with floured biscuit cutter. Place on ungreased pan and brush tops with milk. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until browned. Makes 1-1/2 dozen.


AVOCADO SALAD

2 (3-oz.) pkgs. lime gelatin, or 1 (6-oz.) pkg.
2 cups boiling water
1 cup mayonnaise
2 mashed avocados
1 (8-oz.) pkg. and 1 (3-oz.) pkg. cream cheese
1 small jar pimentos
2 cups celery
1 small onion, grated
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
Garlic powder to taste
Salt and cayenne pepper to taste
Lettuce leaves

Mix together gelatin and boiling water. Add remaining ingredients, except lettuce, and adjust seasonings to taste. Pour into prepared lightly oiled mold. Chill several hours until well-set. Serve on lettuce leaves. Makes 6 servings.


BRUSSELS SPROUTS A L'ORANGE

1 pound fresh Brussels sprouts
1 small orange, unpeeled and cut into wedges
1/3 cup fresh orange juice
1 Tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon butter or margarine, melted
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed

Wash Brussels sprouts and drain. Combine Brussels sprouts and remaining ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat. Simmer 8 to 10 minutes or until tender. Remove Brussels sprouts with slotted spoon and serve. Serves 4.


BEEF TIPS WITH MUSTARD CREAM OVER RICE

1 pound top sirloin or rib-eye steak, cut into 
pieces and dredged in Kentucky Kernel brand flour
6 Tablespoons butter
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 teaspoon minced onion
1/3 cup heavy cream
2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
White pepper to taste
2 cups cooked rice

Sauté beef tips in butter until well-browned on each side. Transfer to platter and keep warm. Add to the skillet wine and onion and simmer 2 minutes. Stir well to deglaze the pan. Add cream and cook until thickened. Stir in mustard and white pepper. Arrange beef tips over rice and pour sauce over beef. Makes 4 servings.


CRANBERRY ICE

2 (1-lb.) cans jellied cranberry sauce
2 cups lemon-lime soda
Mint leaves for garnish

Beat cranberry sauce on high speed with electric mixer until smooth, about 5 minutes. Gently fold in lemon-lime soda. Divide mixture to fill 2 ice cube trays. Freeze until firm. Transfer cubes to food processor and mix until frothy. Pour into 1-quart container and cover. Freeze until 30 minutes before serving. Spoon into serving dishes and garnish with mint leaves. Serves 8.

Linda Allison-Lewis writes from her home in Bullitt County. She is the author of Kentucky's Best-Fifty Years of Great Recipes. Send letters, recipes, or requests to Kentucky Cooks, Linda Allison-Lewis, P. O. Box 40, Hillview, KY 40129.