Comfort foods are an American family tradition. Try your hand at this menu filled with feel-good recipes and easy-to-follow tips.
-- Simple Beef and Noodles
-- Skillet Pot Roast with Cherries
-- Twice-Baked Potatoes
-- Mashed Sweet Potatoes
-- Saucy Apple Dumplings
Simple Beef and Noodles
Precooked beef tips speed up this traditionally slow-cooked dish. Ready in just 25 minutes, it pairs well with a crisp green salad and crusty roll.
Skillet Pot Roast with Cherries
Cherries in a pot roast? You bet! The fruit, along with balsamic vinegar, adds a little sweetness to the sauce of this one-pan entree.
Once you master the basic Twice-Baked Potatoes recipe, try making the rich Bacon-Cheddar potatoes shown here. Take a look at the next three slides for a closer look at some of the recipe's key steps.
Step 1: Scrub the Potatoes
Scrub the potatoes with a brush and rinse thoroughly under cool tap water. The next slide shows how to poke holes in the potatoes.
Step 2: Prick the Potatoes
After scrubbing the potatoes, use a fork to prick the potatoes all over. This lets steam escape so the potatoes don't explode during baking. Step 3 demonstrates how to scoop the potato pulp from the skin.
Step 3: Scoop Out the Pulp
After baking the potatoes the first time and letting them cool slightly, hold each half with a paper towel or pot holder. Carefully scoop out pulp, leaving a 1/4- to 1/2-inch shell. The next slide shows how to mash the potatoes.
Step 4: Mash the Potatoes
After scooping out the potatoes, mash or beat the pulp until nearly smooth, then mix in the other ingredients. Step 5 gives the best way to scoop the pulp into the skins.
Step 5: Filling the Potato Skins
Once you've added ingredients to the mashed potatoes, use two spoons to scoop the mashed potato mixture into the potato shells. Mound the potato mixture slightly.
Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are a hit on the holiday table -- or any other day of the year -- with just a pat of butter on top, but they're versatile enough for sweet add-ins, such as the maple syrup and hazelnut topping shown here.
Saucy Apple Dumplings
Purchased puff pastry transforms slightly sweetened apples into neatly packaged dumplings. Top with a two-ingredient sauce. The next four slides walk you through the essential steps.
Step 1: Cutting Rolled Pastry
Using a sharp knife, cut the rolled pastry into four equal squares. The next slide shows how to prepare the pastry for sealing.
Step 2: Preparing Pastry
After cutting the pastry and filling the apples with the sugar mixture, brush the egg mixture on pastry edges to help seal them. Step 3 shows how to pinch the pastry over the apple.
Step 3: Pinch Pastry
Once you've brushed egg on the pastry, start from the corners and pinch the pastry edges together; pleat and fold as necessary. Step 4 shows the proper spacing of the dumplings in the baking pan.
Step 4: Arrange Dumplings in Pan
After sealing all the dumplings, arrange them in a baking pan so they are not touching. Brush dumplings with more of the egg mixture.
Anyone Can Cook
Anyone Can Cook is an innovative cookbook that encourages those new to the kitchen to make simple yet tasty meals, while providing the tools to move on to more complex recipes.
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