Joanne Fluke’s Gingerbread Cookies

Joanne Fluke's Gingerbread Men

Joanne Fluke’s Gingerbread Men

Joanne Fluke’s Gingerbread Cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) softened, salted butter 

1 cup white sugar

1/2 cup hot strong coffee

2/3 cup dark molasses

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt

2  1/2 tsp. ground ginger

1/2 tsp. ground cloves

1 tsp. cinnamon

4 3/4 cups flour (DON’T SIFT IT — pack it down in the cup when you measure it)

In a large bowl, mix the softened butter with the white sugar.

Add the half-cup of hot strong coffee and then stir in the dark molasses.

Mix in the baking soda, salt, salt, ground ginger, ground cloves and cinnamon.  Stir well.

Add the flour in half-cup increments, mixing after each addition.  Give everything a final stir and then cover your bowl with plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator overnight.

The next day, preheat the oven to 375 degrees, rack in the middle position.

Divide the dough into four parts for ease in rolling.  Roll out the first part of the dough on a floured board.  If you plan to use gingerbread men or reindeer-shaped cookie cutters, roll your dough out to 1/4 inch thick. (Arms and legs tend to snap off when you frost them if they’re rolled too thin.)  Otherwise roll your dough out to 1/8 inch thick.

Dip the cookie cutters in flour and cut out cookies, getting as many as you can from the the sheet of dough.  Use a metal spatula to remove the cookies from the rest of dough and place them on an UNGREASED cookie sheet.  Leave at least an inch and a half between cookies.

Once you’ve cut out your cookies, there will be leftover dough.  You can gather it into a ball, re-flour the board, and re-roll it.  (I’ve done this up to 3 times — the 4th time the dough got too stiff to roll well.)

If you want to use colored sugar or sprinkles to decorate, put it on NOW, before baking and press it down just a bit with your fingers or with a spatula.  If you’d rather frost the cookies, wait until they’re baked and completely cooled.

Bake 1/4 inch thick cookies at 375 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes.  Leave them on the sheet for a minute or two and then transfer them to a wire rack to complete cooling.

Bake 1/8 inch thick cookies at 375 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes.  Leave them on the cookie sheet for a minute or two and then transfer them to a wire rack to complete cooling

Cookie Icing

2 cups sifted confectioners sugar (powdered sugar)

1/8 tea. salt

1/2 tea. vanilla (or other flavoring)

1/4 cup cream

Mix up icing, adding a little more cream if it’s too thick and a little more powdered sugar if it’s too thin.

If you’d like to frost the cookies in different colors, divide the icing and put it in several small bowls.  Add drops of desired food coloring to each bowl.

Use a frosting knife, or use a brush to “paint” the cookies you’ve baked.

Yield: 3 to 4 dozen cookies made with small cutters, 2 to 3 dozen cookies made with large cookie cutters.


Pumpkin Mousse

Pumpkin Mousse

Pumpkin Mousse

This recipe, Pumpkin Mousse, is the perfect dessert for Fall evenings when you’re craving the spices that remind you of family and holidays.  Low in fat and only 13g of carbs.


Pumpkin Mousse Recipe

Pumpkin Mousse

1 (1 oz.) pkg. sugar free instant vanilla pudding

1 cup fat free milk

½ cup pumpkin puree

½ tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. ground allspice

¼ ground ginger

2 ¼ cups Light Whipped Topping, divided

¼ tsp. ground nutmeg


Whisk the instant pudding and milk together and let it set for 2 minutes until it thickens up.

Add in the pumpkin puree and spices and mix well.

Gently fold in 1 ½ cups whipped topping until well combined.

Divide into 6 dishes (about ½ cup per serving.)

Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Before serving, top each dessert with 2 tablespoons of light whipped topping and sprinkle ground nutmeg.


(Recipe for Pumpkin Mousse, Diabetic Connect, 2015)


Citrus Salmon with Orange Relish

Citrus Salmon with Orange Relish

Citrus Salmon with Orange Relish

This recipe, Citrus Salmon with Orange Relish, I wanted something different for dinner, so I looked through all my recipes (over 100).  I came across a small pamphlet from McCormick Spices for Health, which I’ve had for at least 12 years, and I haven’t looked through it since I picked it up at the A & P.  Well, you had to put the salmon in a marinade for up to 30 minutes or longer.  Of course I choose the latter, because I HAVE NEVER HAD SALMON BEFORE.  Well, it was SO GOOD, that I made it the next day, and have bought more salmon because I’m making it this week again.


Citrus Salmon with Orange Relish Recipe


Citrus Salmon with Orange Relish

¼ cup orange juice

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1 1/2 tsp.  McCormick Thyme Leaves, divided

4 salmon fillets (about 1 lb.)

1 Tbsp. brown sugar

1 tsp. McCormick Perfect Pinch Garlic & Herb SALT FREE Seasoning


Orange Relish

½ tsp. grated orange peel

2 seedless oranges, peeled, sectioned and cut into ½ inch pieces

2 Tbsp. chopped red bell pepper

1 Tbsp. honey

1 Tbsp. chopped red onion

1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley

½ tsp. McCormick Ground Ginger


FOR THE SALMON:  Mix orange juice, oil, and 1 teaspoon of the thyme in small bowl.  Place salmon in large resealable plastic bag or glass dish.  Add marinade; turn to coat well.  Refrigerate 30 minutes or longer for extra flavor.  For the relish, mix all ingredients in medium bowl.  Cover.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.

MIX brown sugar, Perfect Pinch, remaining ½ teaspoon thyme in small bowl.  Remove salmon from marinade.  Discard any remaining marinade.  Rub salmon evenly with the Perfect Pinch marinade.  Place salmon on foil-lined baking dish.

BAKE in preheated 400 F. oven 10 to 15 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork.  Or grill salmon over medium-high heat 6 to 8 minutes per sides or until fish flakes easily with a fork.  Serve with Orange Relish.             4 servings


(Recipe for Citrus Salmon with Orange Relish, McCormick Spices for Health, 2015)


Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins

Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins

Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins


Recipe provided courtesy of Taste of Home magazine.  Find more great recipes at


This wonderful treat can be served as a breakfast or brunch bread.  The spices and cranberries really put people in the holiday spirit!

          Lisa Varner                                                                         Charleston, South Carolina

Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins Recipe


Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins

2 ¼ cups flour

½ cup packed brown sugar

2 tsp. ground ginger

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

¾ tsp. salt

½ tsp. baking soda

1 egg

¾ cup water

½ cup fat-free plain yogurt

1/3 cup molasses

¼ cup canola oil

1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries, coarsely chopped


In a large bowl, combine the first seven ingredients.  In a small bowl, combine the egg, water, yogurt, molasses and oil.  Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened.  Fold in cranberries.

Coat muffin cups with cooking spray or use paper liners; fill ¾ full with batter.  Bake at 350 F. for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in muffin comes out clean.  Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack.        1 dozen


(Recipe for Cranberry Gingerbread Muffins was in, 2014)


Toffee-Pear Crisp Bread Pudding


Toffee-Pear Crisp Bread Pudding

Toffee-Pear Crisp Bread Pudding

Recipe provided courtesy of Taste of Home magazine.  Find more great recipes at


My son loves pear crisp, but one night I was making bread pudding.  He asked if I could make both.  I compromised by combining two desserts into this one dish.  It’s absolutely FANTASTIC!

             Kurt Walt                                                                            Redwood City, California


Toffee-Pear Crisp Bread Pudding Recipe

Toffee-Pear Crisp Bread Pudding

1 ¾ cups 2% milk

1 cup butterscotch-caramel ice cream topping

¼ cup butter, CUBED

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

½ tsp. ground ginger

2 eggs

4 cups cubed day-old French bread

2 cups sliced peeled fresh pears (about 2 medium)

Topping:     ½ cup flour

½ cup packed brown sugar

1/3 cup cold butter

1/3 cup English toffee bits


Preheat oven to 350 F.  In a small saucepan, combine milk, caramel topping, butter, cinnamon and ginger.  Cook and stir over medium-low heat until butter is melted.  Remove from heat.

Whisk eggs in a large bowl; gradually whisk in a third of the milk mixture.  Stir in remaining milk mixture.  Add bread; stir to coat.  Let stand 10 minutes.  Gently stir in pears; transfer to a greased 11 x 7 inch baking dish.  Bake, uncovered, 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, for topping, in a small bowl, combine flour and brown sugar; cut in butter until crumbly.  Stir in toffee bits; sprinkle over bread pudding.  Bake, uncovered, 20-25 minutes longer or until puffed, golden and a knife inserted near the center comes out clean.  Let stand 10 minutes before serving.  Serve warm.  Refrigerate leftovers.          12 servings


(Recipe for Toffee-Pear Crisp Bread Pudding was on, 2014)


Shrimp Stir-Fry

Shrimp Stir-Fry

Shrimp Stir-Fry


Recipe provided courtesy of Taste of Home magazine.  Find more great recipes at


When I need to fix a quick meal, I frequently turn to this well-loved dish that takes only a few minutes to cook.  I’ve also used chicken instead of shrimp with delicious results.  I enjoy preparing holiday meals for my family when everyone can be together.


Shrimp Stir-Fry Recipe

Shrimp Stir-Fry

1 ½ cups broccoli florets

1 small sweet red pepper, julienned

1 small green pepper, julienned

1 to 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil

1 lb. cooked shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 Tbsp. cornstarch

2 tsp. brown sugar

1 to 1 ½ tsp. ground ginger

1 cup orange juice

¼ cup soy sauce

Hot cook white or brown rice


In a skillet, stir-fry broccoli and peppers in oil until tender.  Add shrimp; stir-fry for 3-5 minutes or until shrimp turn pink.

Combine the cornstarch, brown sugar, ginger, orange juice and soy sauce until smooth; add to skillet.  Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.  Serve over rice.            3-4 servings


(Recipe for Shrimp Stir-Fry was on, 2014)


Teriyaki Beef Burgers


Teriyaki Beef Burgers

Teriyaki Beef Burgers

Recipe provided courtesy of Taste of Home magazine.  Find more great recipes at


Everyone who tastes them agrees that these are not your ordinary burgers!  A flavorful Asian-inspired marinade and crunchy water chestnuts make them a surefire crowd-pleaser.  * This recipe is Diabetic Friendly! *

                  Mitzi Sentiff                                                                       Annapolis, Maryland


Teriyaki Beef Burgers Recipe

Teriyaki Beef Burgers

1 ½ lbs. lean ground beef (90% lean)

1 can (8 oz.) water chestnuts, drained and chopped

½ cup reduced-sodium soy sauce

1/3 cup sherry or reduced-sodium beef broth

2 green onions

1 Tbsp. brown sugar

2 garlic cloves, minced

½ tsp. ground ginger

6 lettuce leaves

6 hamburger buns, split


In a large bowl, combine the beef and water chestnuts.  Shape into six patties.  Place in a 13 x 9 inch dish.

In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, sherry or broth, onions, brown sugar, garlic and ginger.  Pour ½ cup over patties; cover and refrigerate for 2-3 hours or overnight.  Cover and refrigerate remaining marinade for basting.

Drain and discard marinade.  Using long-handled tongs, moisten a paper towel with cooking oil and lightly coat the grill rack.  Grill patties, covered, over medium heat or broil 4 inch from the heat for 5-7 minutes on each side or until  a meat thermometer reads 160 F. and juices run clear, basting occasionally with reserved marinade.  Serve on lettuce-lines buns.          6 servings


(Recipe for Teriyaki Beef Burgers was on, 2014)


Fresh Pear Ginger Crisp


Fresh Pear Ginger Crisp

Fresh Pear Ginger Crisp

Recipe provided courtesy of Taste of Home magazine.  Find more great recipes at


Gingersnaps lend crunch to my heartwarming cool weather classic, featuring the season’s juiciest fruit.

           Linda Robertson                                                                               Cozad, Nebraska


Fresh Pear Ginger Crisp Recipe

Fresh Pear Ginger Crisp

1 cup crushed gingersnap cookies (about 20 cookies)

½ cup old-fashioned oats

½ cup packed brown sugar

¼ tsp. ground ginger

¼ tsp. ground cloves

1/8 tsp. salt

1/3 cup butter, softened

7 medium pears (about 2 ½ lbs.), peeled and thinly sliced

2 Tbsp. flour

Vanilla ice cream, optional

In a small bowl, combine the first six ingredients.  With clean hands, work butter into oat mixture until well combined.  Refrigerate for 15 minutes.

Place pears in a small bowl; add flour and toss to coat.  Transfer to a greased 8 inch square baking dish; sprinkle with oat mixture.

Bake, uncovered, at 350 F. for 35-40 minutes or until topping is golden brown and fruit is tender.  Serve warm with ice cream if desired.            9 servings


(Recipe for Fresh Pear Ginger Crisp was on, 2014)


Potluck Spareribs

Potluck Spareribs

Potluck Spareribs

Recipe provided courtesy of Taste of Home magazine.  Find more great recipes



These ribs are guaranteed pleasers at potlucks.  I always bring home an empty dish.

              Sheri Kirkman                                                                                     Lancaster, New York


Potluck Spareribs Recipe

Potluck Spareribs

6 lbs. pork spareribs

1 ½ cups ketchup

¾ cup packed brown sugar

½ cup white vinegar

½ cup honey

1/3 soy sauce

1 ½ tsp. ground ginger

1 tsp. salt

¾ tsp. ground mustard

½ tsp. garlic powder

¼ tsp. pepper

Cut ribs into serving-size pieces; place with the meaty side up on racks in two greased 13×9 inch baking pans.  Cover tightly with foil.  Bake at 350 F. for 1 ¼ hours or until meat is tender.

Remove racks; drain and return ribs to pans.  Combine the remaining ingredients; pour over ribs.  Bake, uncovered, for 35 minutes or until sauce coats ribs, basting occasionally.  Ribs can also be grilled over medium-hot heat for the last 35 minutes instead of baking.          12 servings

(Recipe for Potluck Spareribs was in


Barbecue Meatballs

Barbecue Meatballs

Barbecue Meatballs

Recipe provided courtesy of Taste of Home magazine.  Find more great recipes at


I came across this recipe while living abroad many years ago.  These meatballs are as finger-licking good as barbecued ribs but easier to eat.

                Dane Harvill                                                                              Mosca, Colorado

Barbecue Meatballs Recipe


Barbecue Meatballs

2 eggs

½ cup evaporated milk

1 cup dry bread crumbs

1 small onion, chopped

1 tsp. salt

½ tsp. pepper

2 Lbs. ground beef

Sauce:    1 ½ cups water

2/3 cup packed browned sugar

¼ cup chili sauce

3 Tbsp. cider vinegar

3 Tbsp. soy sauce

2 Tbsp. ketchup

1 ½ tsp. ground ginger

¼ tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. pepper

Dash Worcestershire sauce

In a large bowl, combine the first six (6) ingredients.  Crumble beef over mixture and mix well.  With wet hands, shape into 1-inch balls.  In a large skillet, brown meatballs in small batches over medium heat, turning often.  Remove with slotted spoon and keep warm; drain.

In the same pan, combine sauce ingredients.  Bring to a boil over medium heat.  Reduce heat; add the meatballs.  Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes or until sauce is absorbed.       6 ½ dozen


(Recipe for Barbecue Meatballs was on – 2012)

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