Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

January 3, 2014

Looking forward to all the good in 2014

By Alice Woodhull
Daily News

---- — Here we are, another year has passed and we are beginning a new one.

I am just getting used to writing 2013 on my checks, and now I have to start all over remembering what to put on them. Last year was a good one, but I am looking forward to the new one. I hope I can rise above all the disappointments I had last year, and focus on all the good things life has to offer.

I am not looking forward to the weather that has been forecast for us for next week. They say it will be colder than it has been in the last 20 years. We just didn’t appreciate all the warmer than usual years we had. I am already trying to get warm. I guess I will just stay inside and look out. It seems the cold air just goes right through all the coats I manage to put on.

We can always look forward to spring and the warmer weather it promises. I hope you have marked April 7 on your calendar. That will be our International Night. We will be going to Indonesia this year. Maya, who has the Indonesian restaurant downtown, will be catering the meal and telling us about her homeland. After meeting her, I am looking forward to this evening. It will also be our Cultural Arts exhibit. So, get started working on your entry for this. The regular exhibit will be just like past years with the special exhibit being purses. Get your thinking cap on and sew up your favorite purse pattern. I forgot, it doesn’t have to be sewed. It can be crocheted,. knitted, or any other technique you want to use.

More details will be coming in the future so watch this column for them. We hope to have a large participation.

I always like to fix soup or stew on cold winter days. It seems to warm me up faster than anything else.

TACO SOUP

1 pound ground beef

1 large onion, chopped

1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 15-ounce can pinto beans, rinsed and drained

1 can Mexican corn

1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes with chilies

1 package taco seasoning

1 package ranch dressing seasoning

Brown ground beef and onion; drain. Add remaining ingredients. Simmer 30 minutes. Heat can be controlled by using regular corn or tomatoes. Serve with choice of toppers -- corn chips, shredded cheese, or sour cream.

FRENCH MARKET SOUP

1 bag mixed beans

2 quarts water

1 ham bone or hock

1 1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 16-ounce can tomatoes

1 large onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1 chopped chili pepper

1/4 cup lemon juice

Rinse bean mixture thoroughly. Place in a large kettle. Cover with water, and soak over night. In the morning, drain. Add 2 quarts water and ham bone. Simmer for 3 hours. Add remaining ingredients and simmer for 1 hour.

CHEDDAR CHOWDER

2 cups water

2 cups diced potatoes

1/2 cup diced carrots

1/2 cup diced celery

1/4 cup chopped onion

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/4 cup butter

1/4 cup flour

2 cups milk

2 cups Cheddar cheese, grated

1 cup cubed ham

Combine water, potatoes, carrots, celery, onion, salt and pepper in large kettle. Boil for 10 to 12 minutes. Meanwhile, in small saucepan, make white sauce by melting the butter. Add flour and stir until smooth, about 1 minute. Slowly add milk; cook until thickened. Add grated cheese to white sauce; stir until melted. Add white sauce and cubed ham to vegetables that have not been drained. Heat through. Yield: 6 servings.