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Phyllis' Fixin's

I'm always looking for ways to cook, bake or fry potatoes or look for toppings to try on the baked ones. Butter and sour cream get kind of old all the time. I scrounged through some cookbooks and came up with a few recipes. The first one I got out of the Star Tribune, I think it was.

Make Your Own Chips

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly brush one side of four corn tortillas with 1/4 tsp. canola oil and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Add cajun mix, cumin, paprika, chili powder, etc. as desired. Stack the tortilla and cut into eight wedges. Arrange on lightly oiled baking sheets. Bake until crisp, about 8-10 minutes. Makes 32 tortilla chips.

Ham and Swiss-Topped Potatoes

3 medium baking potatoes

2 T. cornstarch

2 C. milk

1 T. Dijon mustard

1/2 tsp. pepper

1/2 C. shredded Swiss cheese

2 C. cubed fully cooked ham

2 C. steamed cut fresh asparagus

Bake potatoes at 375 degrees for 1 hour or until tender. Meanwhile, in saucepan, combine the cornstarch and milk until smooth. Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Reduce heat; stir in the mustard, pepper and Swiss cheese. Cook and stir until the cheese is melted. Stir in ham and asparagus. Cook for 5 minutes or until heated through. Cut potatoes in half lengthwise; place cut side up and fluff the pulp with a fork. Spoon 2/3 cup sauce over each half.

I read this article that said the typical symptoms of stress are eating too much, impulse buying, and driving too fast. Are they kidding? That's my idea of a perfect day!

Delmonico Potatoes

1 2 lb.pkg. frozen hash brown potatoes

1 (8 oz.) pkg. cubed processed cheese food

2 C. half-and-half

1/2 C. butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place frozen potatoes in a 9x13 inch baking dish. In a saucepan on the stove top or in microwave on low, melt together cheese and butter (or margarine). When melted, blend in the cream. Pour mixture over frozen potatoes, and cover with foil. Bake for 1 hour. Remove foil, and bake 15 minutes more. About 8 servings.

Potato Topped Meat Pie

1 lb. ground beef

1 medium onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 egg

2 T. Worcestershire sauce

1 C. dry bread crumbs

salt and pepper to taste

1 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen corn, thawed

1 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen peas, thawed

1 can Cream of Mushroom soup

1/2 C. milk

3 C. mashed potatoes, made with milk and butter

In a large skillet, cook the beef, onion and garlic over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Cool for 5 minutes. In a bowl, combine the egg, Worcestershire sauce, bread crumbs, salt and pepper. Stir in meat mixture. Transfer to a greased 9x13 inch baking dish. In a bowl, combine the corn, peas, soup and milk. Spread over meat mixture. Top with mashed potatoes. Bake, uncovered, at 375 degrees for 35 minutes or until lightly browned.

An elderly man, harassed by the taunts of the neighborhood children, devised a scheme. He offered to pay them a dollar each if they would return on Tuesday and yell their insults again.

The children did so eagerly and received the money. Then he told them he would pay only 25 cents on Wednesday. When they returned, insulted him again and collected their quarters, he informed them that Thursday's rate would be just a penny. "Forget it," they said, "it's not worth it"- and never taunted him again! (and they think we old people are dumb!)

If opportunity doesn't knock, build a door. Have a good week!