Lyndal Curry shares recipes collected from friends in various places

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By Ann Cipperly

Lyndal Curry and her husband, Tim, have lived in a number of places across the country. Lyndal has a love of cooking and has gathered recipes from friends at each place they have lived. She now has a large collection and preparing the recipes brings back wonderful memories of friends in every location.
Growing up in Atlanta, GA., Lyndal was influenced in cooking by her grandmother, who was from Texas. She spent summers with her grandmother in Charlotte, N.C. She taught Lyndal how to cook, and they would cook together, creating delicious cakes and other baked goods.
Lyndal’s father, Bill Myrick, was the lifestyle editor for the Atlanta Journal and Constitution newspaper. Later, they moved to Birmingham where her father worked for the Birmingham News. Her father grew up on a large farm in Slap Out, Elmore County.
Tim is from Birmingham, but they did not meet until they were students at Auburn University.
After Lyndal and Tim graduated and got married, they moved to Birmingham for Tim to accept a position at US Steel. The company transferred him to various places, including Memphis, Tenn., Oregon, two places in San Francisco and then came back south.
When they moved to San Francisco, she worked part-time for the City of Concord in the parks and recreation center. Later, they moved to Walnut Creek, which was closer to the city.
“After we decided to leave San Francisco,” says Lyndal, “we stepped out in faith and moved to the Pensacola area to work.”
She taught full time at the University of South Alabama, while Tim was working with the Mobile Fire department. They are both paramedics. From Pensacola, they moved to Spanish Fort.
In 2011, the Currys moved to Lee County. Lyndal worked full time at Southern Union as an EMS instructor for five years When she retired, Lyndal began teaching classes online for Southern Union. While Tim retired from the fire department, he works part-time teaching EMS . They also work part-time at the medical school on the Auburn campus.
The Currys have two daughters. Daughter Brennan and her husband, Justin Townsend, live in Greenville, S.C. and have three children, Eliza, 10; Rhys, 8; and Ann Marin, 6 years old. Their other daughter, Erin, and her husband, Jeff Radford, live in Birmingham. They have two children, Saxby, 13, and Alcee, 11.
Lyndal and Tim still enjoy traveling. They recently visited Calgary and Lake Louise in Canada. “Every day we were treated local snacks such as maple cream cookies,” says Lyndal. “One day our guide said we were having Nanaimo Bars. They are named after the city of Nanaimo on Vancouver Island, and they are well known in Canada. They were good, but not as good as the recipe my friend in Walnut Creek gave me. Her husband was Canadian, and the recipe was his mother’s.”
Another favorite cookie is the Almond Joy Cookies embellished with milk chocolate chips, coconut and almonds for a yummy treat. Lyndal will bake a few and then scoop the dough into a quart sized Ziploc bag. She mashes the batter out to flatten and freezes them. When ready to bake, she breaks off part, lets it thaw and then bakes the cookies.
A unique recipe is the Grits Dressing. She was given this recipe in Charleston from a family that had handed down the recipe for about 125 years.
Lyndal enjoys entertaining. She will prepare most of the meal in the morning. She suggests getting everything done ahead when entertaining, so as guests arrive you are relaxing with a glass of wine and not rushing round.
The Conecuh Sausage and Asparagus Pasta is a favorite to serve when entertaining, and it is a recipe she created. Tim will grill the sausage and freeze some to have on hand for adding to the pasta.
Another go-to dish for company is the Mexican Meatloaf. She will prepare three at a time and freeze them. Sometimes after church, they will invite friends over. She will pull out one of the meatloaves that takes about an hour to cook. She will whip up potatoes and assemble a salad to complete the menu. The meatloaf glaze is spicy sweet prepared with fresh or canned tomatoes, mustard, onions, chilis and brown sugar. She will also freeze the glaze topping.
The Hot Fudge Pie is her standby dessert to mix quickly for company. She serves it topped with ice cream.
Lyndal is organized in the kitchen. “I like to cook smarter, not harder,” she says. When she gets a bag of lemons, she will go ahead and juice and zest all of them. She puts the zest in pill bags and the juice in ice trays to freeze for later use.
She discovered a way to boil eggs that are easy to peel. She puts them in a steamer basket over water and boils for 12 minutes. Then she puts them in ice water. They are easy to peel every time.
Lyndal got the idea for the Black-Eyed Pea Soup from the Wish Bone Café in Montgomery. She came home and copied the idea.
Along with eating good food, the Currys enjoy scuba diving. Tim was a scuba diving instructor in Oregon and San Francisco. They now go to the Caribbean to scuba dive.
Lyndal also enjoys being in the Community Bible Study at First Baptist Church.
Following are a variety of wonderful recipes collected over time. “I like to share my recipes that I have collected from friends along the way,” says Lyndal. “I generally have a story with each recipe that brings back memories of friends and good times.”

Cipperly can be contacted at recipes@cipperly.com.

Recipes:

Mexican Meatloaf
This recipe doubles very easily and freezes well. Wrap in a couple layers of heavy duty foil and freeze in freezer Ziploc bags. I usually make more glaze, and it freezes well too. Adjust chilis and brown sugar to your taste.
Makes 1 large loaf
Meatloaf:
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 medium carrot, finely chopped
1 -2 ribs chopped celery
1 lb. ground beef
1 poblano chili, roasted, peeled, diced
¼ tsp. each black pepper and cayenne
2 eggs, beaten
¼ cup sour cream
½ cup finely chopped onion
1 garlic clove, minced
½ lb. breakfast sausage
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. cumin
¼ cup ketchup
½ cup dried breadcrumbs
Glaze:
2 medium tomatoes, cored (I use 1 can of whole tomatoes when out of season)
¼ medium white onion
2 garlic cloves
1 – 3 serrano chilies ( I use jalapenos)
¼ cup brown sugar
1 Tbsp. chipotle chili in adobo sauce, minced
1 Tbsp. yellow mustard
Kosher salt
Preheat oven to 375.
In a heavy skillet, heat oil over medium high heat. Add onion, celery, carrot and garlic. Sauté, stirring until veggies are soft, about 8 minutes. Set aside to cool.
In a large bowl combine meat, chilis and veggies
In medium bowl, combine salt, pepper, cayenne, cumin and eggs. Add ketchup and sour cream and mix well with a fork. Pour this on top of meat mixture along with breadcrumbs and mix well.
Shape mixture into loaf and place in loaf pan. Bake until thermometer reads 160°, about 45 minutes.
Glaze:
In a heavy skillet or Dutch oven, add tomatoes, onion, garlic cloves and chilis. Cook turning frequently until lightly charred on all sides. Allow to cool.
Pulse the tomato mixture in blender until chunky and then pour into small skillet.
Stir in sugar, chipotle chili and mustard. Boil over medium until slightly thickened and season with salt.
Spoon glaze over meatloaf and serve.

Almond Joy Cookies
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
4 eggs
3 tsp. vanilla
4 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
5 cups milk chocolate chips
2 cups sweetened coconut
2 cups chopped almonds
Pre-heat oven to 375. Lightly grease cookie sheets – parchment paper works best.
Combine dry ingredients; set aside.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars together. Beat in eggs, one at a time, stir in vanilla. Stir in dry ingredients until well mixed. Then stir in the chocolate chips, coconut and almonds. Drop by rounded tablespoons full onto the prepared cookie sheets.
Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
This recipe makes 10 dozen cookies so be prepared. I mix all the ingredients together with the mixer then mix in the nuts, coconut, and chocolate chips by hand.
The dough freezes well. Fill a quart bag and squash the batter flat and freeze.

Nanaimo Bars
Old favorite recipe from Nanaimo, British Columbia (Vancouver Island). I got this recipe from an Australian friend whose husband was Canadian.
½ cup butter
¼ cup sugar
3 Tbsp. cocoa
1 egg beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 cup chopped coconut
½ cup walnuts, chopped
¼ cup butter softened
2 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
2 Tbsp. instant vanilla pudding
2 Tbsp. milk
2 squares baking chocolate
1 tsp. butter
Heat first 3 ingredients in double boiler. Add eggs and vanilla and stir well. Remove from heat, add cracker crumbs, coconut and walnuts. Press dough into an 8 inch greased pan and put in refrigerator.
Cream butter and confectioners’ sugar and stir in pudding and milk. Mix until smooth. Spread over chilled dough and set in refrigerator.
Melt chocolate and butter and pour over creamed layer. Rotate dish to spread chocolate. Chill. Store in refrigerator.
Cut with a very warm sharp knife into small pieces like fudge.

Tamale Pie
2 lbs. ground beef
1 onion
1 green pepper
16 oz. jar roasted tomato salsa
Pinch of oregano
½ to 1 tsp. dry chipotle pepper
1 tsp. salt
2 pkgs. jiffy cornbread mix
1 cup Mexican cheese shredded
8 oz. canned or frozen (thawed) corn
Start browning beef, onion and peppers.
Stir in salsa.
Stir in salt, oregano and chipotle.
Let meat mixture sauté then simmer.
Meanwhile, mix together one pkg. of Jiffy, as directed.
Pour batter into greased 9×13 baking dish.
Top with the corn.
Top with half of the cheese.
Top with the meat mixture.
Mix the second box of jiffy, as directed and stir the rest of the cheese into the batter.
Top the casserole with the cheesy batter, leaving ½ inch uncovered around edges.
Bake on 350 for 50 minutes.

Avocado/Mango Guacamole
3 ripe avocados, pitted and cubed
1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
¼ cup finely diced red onion
1 small jalapeno, seeded and finely diced
1 tsp. cumin
Salt and pepper to taste – requires more than you would think.
1 lemon, juiced
1 large mango, pitted and cubed
2 – 3 Tbsp. chopped cilantro
Chili powder or cayenne
Tortilla chips
Combine avocados, garlic, onion, jalapeno, cumin, and salt and pepper in bowl. Mix to desired consistency with fork until combined, leaving some chunks of avocado whole. Stir in lemon juice, mango, and cilantro. When serving, sprinkle with cayenne and serve with warm tortilla chips.

Black-Eyed Pea Soup
2 cups dried peas
1 onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
2 Tbsp. bacon grease
2 Tbsp. butter
½ cup whipping cream
1 can Rotel (or other spicy canned, chopped tomatoes)
6 cups savory chicken broth (use chicken soup base, Tone’s)
Soak peas per pkg. directions then cook peas.
When done, sauté vegetables in butter and bacon drippings until onions are clear. Stir in Rotel to taste; add chicken broth and peas. Heat. Remove from heat and add whipping cream.
Season to taste with Luzianne or Tony’s seasonings as needed.
I have added ham/bacon/prosciutto for flavoring
Also, if you want it thicker, I blended a cup or two with the immersion blender and returned it to the soup.

Conecuh Sausage and Asparagus Pasta
All the ingredients can be prepared in advance except boiling the pasta. Just warm the sausage and asparagus and mix in the remaining ingredients according to the recipe.
1 lb. Conecuh sausage
1 lb. asparagus spears
¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
4 cloves garlic
½ cup sliced almonds
2 oz. fresh oregano
2 whole lemons
1 cup heavy cream
½ lb. gemelli or penne rigate (#76)
Olive oil
Grill sausage (or cook in skillet) and chop in ¼ – ½-inch slices. Roast asparagus whole in the oven at 425 for about 5 minutes – check for tenderness but don’t overcook. Chop asparagus in 1-inch pieces and combine with sausage and set aside.
Prepare gremolata: Place washed oregano leaves, whole fresh garlic, and almonds on cutting board and chop until fine. Drizzle a few tablespoons of olive oil in skillet over medium low heat.
Add the gremolata mixture and cook, tossing it around for 3 – 4 minutes until it becomes lightly golden brown. Season with salt & pepper. Remove from heat and zest 1 tsp. of lemon directly into the pan and stir.
Cook ¾ lb. of pasta in boiling salted water about 6 minutes or to your desired tenderness.
Drain well and add the sausage, juice from 2 lemons, asparagus, gremolata, half the Parmesan cheese and pasta. Mix well. Add a drizzle or two of olive oil and enough heavy cream to make the pasta creamy. Serve with remaining Parmesan. Makes 4 entrée servings.
All the ingredients can be prepared in advance except boiling the pasta. Just warm the sausage and asparagus and mix in the remaining ingredients according to the recipe.

Hot Fudge Pie
1 cup sugar
½ cup butter, melted
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp. vanilla flavoring
½ cup flour
2 Tbsp. cocoa
½ cup nuts (optional)
Melt butter and sugar over med heat and stir well. Remove from heat and add remaining ingredients and mix well.
Put in a butter pie plate and bake at 325° for 30 minutes.
Serve with vanilla ice cream.
You can substitute 2 squares of unsweetened baking chocolate for the cocoa and use ¼ cup of butter rather than ½.

Eddie Mae Byrd’s Grits Dressing
This simple recipe came from Charleston, S.C. and served at Thanksgiving and Christmas for five generations, converting waves of in-laws with their first taste.
Bacon grease, room temperature
2 cups cold prepared grits
16 slices white bread including heels, crumbled (spread out pieces and leave overnight, they will be hard, just right to crumble)
3 ½ cups turkey or chicken stock
2 eggs, beaten
2 medium onions, chopped
Generous salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 350. Liberally prepare a 9 X 13-inch clear glass baking dish with bacon grease.
In a large bowl, combine grits, crumbled (not crumbs) bread and stock until “slack” (meaning a little lose but thick), using hands to thoroughly incorporate.
Add eggs, onion, salt and pepper; mix thoroughly. Let sit for 15 minutes. Add to baking dish; brush top with bacon grease.
Bake for 45 minutes or until browned (center may not be totally firm). Allow to reach room temperature to “set up” before cutting into squares for serving. We generally serve at room temperature with hot giblet gravy, but it is easy to warm in the microwave or in the oven while the turkey is resting. Makes 8-10 servings.
Sometimes I will throw in a half bag of prepared cornbread dressing (Pepperidge farms).

Homemade Onion Rings
Cook time: 15 minutes
1 whole large onion
2 cups buttermilk
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. (scant) salt
1/4 tsp. (to 1/2 tsp.) cayenne pepper
1 quart (to 2 quarts) canola oil
Black pepper to taste
Slice onion very thin. Place in a Zip-Lock bag and cover with buttermilk and soak at least 1 hour.
Combine dry ingredients and set aside.
Heat oil to 375 degrees.
Grab a handful of onions, throw into the flour mixture, tap to shake off excess, and plunge into hot oil. Fry for a few minutes and remove as soon as golden brown. Don’t cook too many at a time.
Repeat until onions are gone.
Eat before your family sees them.
Repeat with another onion, because they’ll be really mad they didn’t get any. Makes 2 servings.

Cathead Biscuits
Preheat oven to 450.
1 stick salted butter, melted in iron skillet (don’t allow to burn)
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ Tbsp. sugar
1 ½ Tbsp. baking powder
2 scant cups of buttermilk
1 ½ tsp. salt
Mix together and spread into the hot skillet and slice into single servings before baking or drop in serving sizes into skillet. Bake for 20 minutes or until browned.
These are thick, heavy biscuits that make great breakfast sandwiches. Fill with fried egg, bacon and cheese. Wrap in foil and head out the door

Bran Muffins
2 cups boiling water
2 cups Kellogg’s All Bran
1 heaping cup shortening
3 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 quart buttermilk
5 cup all-purpose flour
5 tsp. soda
1 Tbsp. salt
4 cups Kellogg’s All Bran
Raisins/nuts, optional
Pour boiling water over 2 cups All Bran; set aside.
Cream shortening and sugar in very large bowl. Add eggs and beat in well. Add buttermilk and scalded Bran. Sift flour, soda and salt together and add, with the 4 cups All Bran, to the liquid mixture. Beat until just blended. Add raisin or nuts if desired.
Bake in greased muffin tins for 15 – 20 minutes at 400.
This is an old farm recipe that makes a very large quantity – 7 or 8 dozen. The batter will keep in a tightly closed container for a month or more in the refrigerator. I always give some batter to friends. It’s easy to scoop out just enough batter for a couple of muffins at a time.
** I often substitute 2 of the 4 cups of All Bran with 2 cups of oatmeal.

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