Question: I have been trying to find lemon-flavored gelatin in the stores. I prefer the sugar-free, but lately can't find either one. Please help--my holiday molds are much prettier with lemon, rather than orange or lime.
Answer: Gelson's Markets carry regular and sugar-free lemon-flavored gelatin in both the four- and six-serving size packages.
Q: I have two popover pans. I've used the recipes which came with them and had wonderful success until lately. Now they do not puff up and are no longer as hollow as they should be. What am I doing wrong?
A: If you have not changed any of your recipe ingredients or methods, it sounds as if the problem may be your oven. You might use an oven thermometer to check that the temperature is accurate. Perhaps the thermostat is not working properly.
Q: For years I have made batches of Tiny Tims, the miniature fruitcakes, for holiday gifts. A very important ingredient in this recipe is a packaged date bar mix. For the past year I have been unable to find this mix at any market. Can you tell me where to find it?
A: General Mills, makers of the 14-ounce Betty Crocker Date Bar Mix, tell us Stater Bros. is the only Southern California supermarket chain that carries the mix on a regular basis. Alpha Beta has ordered a shipment for the holiday season, so you may be able to find the mix in their stores in time to do your holiday baking.
Q: Frosted date balls, a recipe I took from the package panel of Dromedary dates, was always a favorite of my family as we grew up back in Indiana. I planned to send a supply of the cookies to my children and grandchildren, as well as introduce them to my new children and grandchildren here in California, but found the recipe must have been lost when I remarried and moved here two years ago. Could you possibly get this recipe for me? The date mixture is formed into balls and rolled in powdered sugar. It is at least 25 years old.
A: We contacted Nabisco Brands, which markets Dromedary dates. They say the closest recipe they can find is this one for Spice Bars. Perhaps another reader will have the recipe for frosted date balls and send it along quickly. We'd be happy to print it so you can still make them in time for the holidays.
1 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup buttermilk
1 (8-ounce) package chopped dates
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 cups flour
Combine shortening, sugar, eggs, buttermilk, dates, walnuts, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves with electric mixer until well blended.
Add flour, mixing well with wooden spoon. Pour into greased 15x11-inch jellyroll pan.
Bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes. Spread with Glaze while hot. Cool and cut into bars. Makes 52 (3x1-inch) bars.
1 cup sifted powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Combine sugar and vanilla with enough hot water to make a glaze of spreading consistency.