Dear SOS: I am on a wheat-free diet and have found a great-tasting cookie at Mrs. Gooch's, in Los Angeles, called Oat-Bran-Date Cookies. The cookies are wheat-free; I'd love to have the recipe.
Dear Jane: Mrs. Gooch's referred us to Jeanann Hammer, of Jeanann's, a wholesale whole-grain food company in Pasadena. Their products, such as oat-bran muffins and fruit bars, are sold under store labels at Trader Joe's, Bristol Farms, Westward Ho, Naturally Fast and Follow Your Heart.
Hammer is a registered nurse who developed the cookies for cardiac patients. You and other wheat-free goodie-seekers will love making these healthful, very good cookies.
4 cups quick oats
2 cups oat bran
1 1/4 cups oat flour
1/2 cup soy flour
3/4 cup date sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/3 cups honey
1 cup soy oil
1 1/3 cups egg whites
3/4 cup mashed dates
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
Combine oats, bran, flours, date sugar, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in large bowl and mix well. Mix honey, oil, egg whites, dates and walnuts and add to oat mixture.
Roll out dough to 1/4-inch thickness, using additional oat flour to prevent sticking. Cut into 2 1/2-inch cutouts and bake at 350 degrees 5 to 7 minutes. Makes about 5 dozen.
Dear SOS: I've been trying to locate a recipe for a Cumberland Sauce, which my mother served with leftover ham. It was wonderful. Can you help?
Dear Cathy: Great idea for those who happen to have ham leftover from the Holiday feast.
1 (30-ounce) can fruit cocktail
1/4 cup frozen orange juice concentrate
1/4 cup currant jelly
2 tablespoons Sherry or Port
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Drain fruit cocktail, reserving 1 1/2 cups syrup. Combine syrup with orange juice concentrate, jelly, wine and ginger in saucepan. Heat until jelly melts, stirring occasionally.
Blend cornstarch and lemon juice until smooth and combine with jelly mixture. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens. Add fruit cocktail to sauce, heat 1 to 2 minutes and serve hot with ham. Makes 3 cups sauce.
Note: Sauce without fruit cocktail added can be used to baste ham during last 15 minutes of cooking time, if baking ham.
Dear SOS: Please help. My husband always orders pepper steak whenever dining out. I would love to prepare this for him as a surprise. However, I have searched all of my cookbooks but failed to find a recipe.
Dear E.E.: Let's try the recipe for pepper steak that's served at the Velvet Turtle, which we think is standard.
VELVET TURTLE PEPPER STEAK
3 tablespoons chopped mushrooms
1 tablespoon minced green onion
1 slice bacon, cooked and crumbled
Freshly cracked black pepper
1 (6- to 8-ounce) New York strip steak
1/4 cup beef consomme
2 tablespoons red wine
Maitre d'Hotel Butter
Melt 1 tablespoon butter in small skillet. Add mushrooms, green onion and bacon. Saute until green onion is tender. Season steak to taste with salt and pepper.
Melt 1 tablespoon butter in another skillet and add steak. Cook until browned on both sides. Remove steak from skillet and keep warm. Pour consomme and wine into skillet in which steak was cooked and deglaze, or cook until liquid is reduced to 2 tablespoons. Spoon over steak. Cover with sauteed vegetables. Top with dollop of Maitre d'Hotel Butter. Makes 1 serving.
Maitre d'Hotel Butter
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon minced parsley
Dash black pepper
Dash lemon juice
Combine butter, parsley, salt, pepper and lemon juice until well blended.