Cooking is all in the family PDF Print E-mail
Written by DEBBIE ROGERS, Sentinel Staff Writer   
Tuesday, 01 July 2014 08:26
Sue Stolar, of Walbridge, with her spread of easy-to-make summer dishes. (Photo: Enoch Wu/Sentinel-Tribune)
WALBRIDGE - Cooking is a family affair for Sue Stolar, her six sisters and brother.
Well, for almost all of her siblings.
Baby sister Betty Lou takes after mom Beverly, and does not rule the kitchen. That can be said quite candidly, Sue Stolar said, because the family is so close.
Until very recently, the sisters, who live in the northern Wood County and Toledo area, used to gather twice a year for sleepovers. They'd play games for small prizes, take a group picture, talk - and share favorite dishes.
"We used to do it once a year, but we hated waiting a year (to all get together)," Stolar said.
The sisters, in order, are Maralyn, Ruth, Sue, Vivian, Linda, Charlotte, Janet (deceased) and Betty Lou. The brothers are Jimmy and Danny (deceased).
The family grew up in Walbridge, where sister Linda Bates still lives and where Stolar served this week's Cook's Corner recipes.
Stolar came up with a vegetarian spread that's light and easy to put together for a last-minute Fourth of July meal. Or, it could be made a day ahead so the cook doesn't have to spend the holiday in the kitchen.
"Came up with" isn't exaggerating either. Stolar is hard pressed to write down a recipe as she likes to cook by feel, taste and whatever's in the pantry.
For example, she said the marinated vegetables can be adapted to what's in season and what's on sale.
"It's not a recipe. It's just what I do for my family," Stolar said. "You can interchange the vegetables. … There is not too much, or not enough of everything."
To add some meat to this meal, Stolar suggested grilling smoked kielbasa.
"Everything's easy," she said of the menu.
Stolar and her husband, Ed, celebrated 55 years of marriage last week. The two have lived in Rossford most of their lives and have four children.
She prefers to make spicy food, such as stuffed hot peppers and Indian dishes. She became fond of the latter while babysitting two girls from an Indian family and preparing their meals years ago. Her husband's favorite dinners are steak and Hungarian peppers, which are a nod to his heritage.
Whatever she is making has her own touch.
"Whenever I do a recipe, I do it. Then I change it to my way."
She said she cooks by "trial and error. I still burn things. I still forget."

Pineapple Cream Pie
20-ounce can crushed pineapple with juice
1 small package instant vanilla pudding (or banana)
1 cup sour cream
8-ounce container of whipped cream
Two prepared graham cracker crusts, combined

Blend the pineapple, pudding and sour cream together, then fold in the whipped cream. Pour into the crusts. Stolar said nuts could be added to the filling or as a garnish, along with more whipped cream. Let set in refrigerator before serving.

Marinated Vegetables
2 cups thinly sliced carrots
2 cups celery
1 whole bell pepper (any color)
4 tomatoes, preferably “on the vine”
1 long, Burpless cucumber
16 ounce zesty Italian dressing

Layer the chopped vegetables in a large bowl, with the tomatoes last. Stolar said any vegetables can be put in this salad.
Pour the dressing over the vegetables, but don’t stir. Let it marinate for a few hours or overnight. Stir before serving.

Cornflake Cookies
1 stick butter
10.5-ounce bag miniature marshmallows
5 cups cornflakes

Microwave butter for 30 seconds. Add the marshmallows and microwave 3 to 3.5 minutes, stirring until they melt. Add the cornflakes. Use a rubber spatula to separate and spoon out; Stolar said wet hands also help with the stickiness. Add food coloring if desired.

Pierogi Casserole
9 cooked lasagna noodles
2 sticks butter
3 onions
5 cups instant potato flakes (Stolar prefers Hungry Jack)
5 cups water
2 cups milk
8-ounce package shredded cheddar

While the noodles are cooking, saute two minced onions in one stick of butter.
In a separate, large cooking pot, boil the water, then add the milk. Salt and pepper to taste. Pour in the potato flakes and stir. Scrape the onion mixture in, then stir in the cheese.
Layer three noodles in a 9x13 dish and top with one-third of the potato mixture. Repeat two more times.
Saute the second butter stick with the last onion, minced, and pour over the lasagna. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Let it rest for 15 minutes before slicing and serving. If not serving immediately, cover tightly with foil.
Last Updated on Thursday, 03 July 2014 07:39

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