×
×
homepage logo

Making meals unforgettable

By Staff | Feb 4, 2011

Linda Ransom serves up a helping of her caramel rolls. Ransom said her cooking is still based on her mother’s original recipes.

By ROBYN KRUGER

Farm News staff writer

OCHEYEDAN – Linda Ransom, who lives near this northeast Osceola County community, said that growing up the oldest of five children on the family farm taught her the fine talents of country cooking and keeping a tidy home.

She has been busy in the kitchen since she was 12 when she learned to cook for the family of seven so her mother could help with farm chores.

Ransom said she learned to do everything from cleaning chickens to making them into the finest chicken soup in the county.

Linda Ransom bakes her caramel rolls in a heart-shaped pan. She also prepares cheesecake in the pan for Valentine’s Day.

“My mother was an excellent cook and taught me everything I know,” Ransom said. “Many of the recipes I use are her originals.” She has revamped some of her mother’s recipes so she can use more modern appliances.

Ransom said she often uses her bread maker to mix her breads and then bakes them in her oven allowing them to have a softer crust and be in a more desirable form. She also enjoys using her Kitchen Aide mixer for mixing cookies and, of course, she uses her microwave oven for many things.

“One of my earliest memories is watching my Aunt Clara make a homemade angel food cake without using a recipe or measuring cups,” Ransom said. “She knew just what ingredients to add and how much.

“I’ve learned to do the same thing through the years.”

Ransom’s talents are well known in the area. Her husband, Earl Ransom, worked at the Farmers Co-op Elevator in Ocheyedan for 40 years. During that time employees and farmers who stopped by the elevator for coffee enjoyed her baked goods.

Though Earl is now retired from the elevator, he still hears requests for her caramel rolls when he is helping the elevator with the fall harvest or when he stops in for coffee with the boys. His wife, he said, does not disappoint.

She is often asked to make her famous chicken soup, for which there is no recipe, for area events. The secret to great chicken soup, she said, is to throw in a handful of raisins.

“I enjoy cooking and baking when there is someone around to eat it,” she said. Her children are all grown now with families of their own, but all look forward to the holidays when Linda’s special talents shine.

Not only does she enjoy cooking a variety of special foods for her family, she also collects table clothes and enjoys decorating her table and home for each festivity. Her table is adorned with a special centerpiece she designs herself. She said her goal is to make each holiday special.

Ransom taught each of her three girls how to cook and now she enjoys teaching her grandchildren.

“Even my children and grandchildren, who didn’t enjoy cooking or baking growing up, seem to call and want my advice when they are grown and cooking for themselves,” she said with a chuckle.

One of Linda’s favorite assistants in the kitchen is her youngest grandson Tate, who is 7. “He really enjoys baking breads and rolls. I think he’s even played sick from school a time or two just so he could come to grandma’s and bake,” she smiled, “but we won’t tell his mom and dad that.”

Linda’s prime rib

(Served each Christmas)

Rub raw meat with a combination of onion and garlic powders, lemon pepper and seasoning salt, or whatever seasoning is preferred on the meat. Place meat into a disposable aluminum roasting pan that is 3 or 4 inches deep, since there will be a plentiful amount of juice and would ruin a good pan.

Place this on a jellyroll pan in case of a leak. (“This recipe will make a mess in your oven anyway, but you don’t want a fire,” Ransom warned.)

Heat oven to 500 degrees. Bake meat at 6 minutes per pound uncovered. After this turn off oven but do not open for 3 1/2 to 4 hours. Without opening oven, reheat oven and meat to 250 degrees and then bake for 30 minutes.

Cut and serve with au jus.

Leah’s Salsbury steak

(A recipe from Linda Ransom’s daughter)

1 pound of ground beef

1/2 cup of chopped onion

3/4 cup of bread crumbs or dressing mix

1 egg

1/2 cup of milk

Salt and pepper to taste

Mix above ingredients and shape into patties. Fry until browned on both sides. Put patties into a casserole dish.

Then mix:

1 can cream of chicken soup

1/2 can of tomato soup

1 can of beef gravy

Pour over patties and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Cheesecake fit for the president

(Ransom makes this in a heart-shaped pan and serves it on Valentine’s Day.)

1 stick of butter

1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs

1 3-ounce package of lemon Jell-o

1 8-ounce package cream cheese softened

1 cup of sugar

1 can of evaporated milk, chilled

Melt butter in frying pan. Add graham crackers crumbs and gently toast, stirring to prevent burning. Line the bottom of an 8-by-10-inch pan with half of the crumbs.

In a mixing bowl, add 1 cup of boiling water to Jell-o. Refrigerate until it just begins to set – do not let it set completely.

In another mixing bowl combine 1 cup of sugar to the cream cheese and whip together.

In another bowl whip the chilled evaporated milk until stiff like whipping cream. Fold in cream cheese mixture and Jell-o mixture and mix until creamy.

Pour over graham cracker crumbs in pan and sprinkle top with remaining crumbs. (Can be inverted if placed in a specially shaped pan or mold.)

Refrigerate. Serves 8-12

Linda’s cinnamon/caramel rolls

1 cup of warm milk

1 teaspoon of salt

1/2 cup butter

1/3 cup sugar

2 large eggs

Place the above ingredients into your bread machine and add 4 1/2 cups of flour and 3 teaspoons of yeast. Combine ingredients in your machine’s dough cycle.

When cycle ends, roll out dough, spread with butter and sprinkle with desired amounts of sugar and cinnamon. Roll up flattened dough and slice into rolls. Put in pans and let rise one hour.

For cinnamon rolls: Bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes and frost with your favorite powdered sugar frosting. Linda adds a little cinnamon to the frosting.

For caramel rolls: Heat just until melted:

1/2 cup of butter

1 cup of brown sugar

1 cup of vanilla ice cream

Pour caramel into a greased 9-by-13-inch cake pan and set unbaked roll slices on top of caramel. Let rise for one hour and bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Let cool about five minutes and turn over onto a cookie sheet or tray. Serve.

Contact Robyn Kruger at rangerob@hickorytech.net.

Please Enter Your Facebook App ID. Required for FB Comments. Click here for FB Comments Settings page

Making meals unforgettable

By Staff | Feb 4, 2011

Linda Ransom serves up a helping of her caramel rolls. Ransom said her cooking is still based on her mother’s original recipes.

By ROBYN KRUGER

Farm News staff writer

OCHEYEDAN – Linda Ransom, who lives near this northeast Osceola County community, said that growing up the oldest of five children on the family farm taught her the fine talents of country cooking and keeping a tidy home.

She has been busy in the kitchen since she was 12 when she learned to cook for the family of seven so her mother could help with farm chores.

Ransom said she learned to do everything from cleaning chickens to making them into the finest chicken soup in the county.

Linda Ransom bakes her caramel rolls in a heart-shaped pan. She also prepares cheesecake in the pan for Valentine’s Day.

“My mother was an excellent cook and taught me everything I know,” Ransom said. “Many of the recipes I use are her originals.” She has revamped some of her mother’s recipes so she can use more modern appliances.

Ransom said she often uses her bread maker to mix her breads and then bakes them in her oven allowing them to have a softer crust and be in a more desirable form. She also enjoys using her Kitchen Aide mixer for mixing cookies and, of course, she uses her microwave oven for many things.

“One of my earliest memories is watching my Aunt Clara make a homemade angel food cake without using a recipe or measuring cups,” Ransom said. “She knew just what ingredients to add and how much.

“I’ve learned to do the same thing through the years.”

Ransom’s talents are well known in the area. Her husband, Earl Ransom, worked at the Farmers Co-op Elevator in Ocheyedan for 40 years. During that time employees and farmers who stopped by the elevator for coffee enjoyed her baked goods.

Though Earl is now retired from the elevator, he still hears requests for her caramel rolls when he is helping the elevator with the fall harvest or when he stops in for coffee with the boys. His wife, he said, does not disappoint.

She is often asked to make her famous chicken soup, for which there is no recipe, for area events. The secret to great chicken soup, she said, is to throw in a handful of raisins.

“I enjoy cooking and baking when there is someone around to eat it,” she said. Her children are all grown now with families of their own, but all look forward to the holidays when Linda’s special talents shine.

Not only does she enjoy cooking a variety of special foods for her family, she also collects table clothes and enjoys decorating her table and home for each festivity. Her table is adorned with a special centerpiece she designs herself. She said her goal is to make each holiday special.

Ransom taught each of her three girls how to cook and now she enjoys teaching her grandchildren.

“Even my children and grandchildren, who didn’t enjoy cooking or baking growing up, seem to call and want my advice when they are grown and cooking for themselves,” she said with a chuckle.

One of Linda’s favorite assistants in the kitchen is her youngest grandson Tate, who is 7. “He really enjoys baking breads and rolls. I think he’s even played sick from school a time or two just so he could come to grandma’s and bake,” she smiled, “but we won’t tell his mom and dad that.”

Linda’s prime rib

(Served each Christmas)

Rub raw meat with a combination of onion and garlic powders, lemon pepper and seasoning salt, or whatever seasoning is preferred on the meat. Place meat into a disposable aluminum roasting pan that is 3 or 4 inches deep, since there will be a plentiful amount of juice and would ruin a good pan.

Place this on a jellyroll pan in case of a leak. (“This recipe will make a mess in your oven anyway, but you don’t want a fire,” Ransom warned.)

Heat oven to 500 degrees. Bake meat at 6 minutes per pound uncovered. After this turn off oven but do not open for 3 1/2 to 4 hours. Without opening oven, reheat oven and meat to 250 degrees and then bake for 30 minutes.

Cut and serve with au jus.

Leah’s Salsbury steak

(A recipe from Linda Ransom’s daughter)

1 pound of ground beef

1/2 cup of chopped onion

3/4 cup of bread crumbs or dressing mix

1 egg

1/2 cup of milk

Salt and pepper to taste

Mix above ingredients and shape into patties. Fry until browned on both sides. Put patties into a casserole dish.

Then mix:

1 can cream of chicken soup

1/2 can of tomato soup

1 can of beef gravy

Pour over patties and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Cheesecake fit for the president

(Ransom makes this in a heart-shaped pan and serves it on Valentine’s Day.)

1 stick of butter

1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs

1 3-ounce package of lemon Jell-o

1 8-ounce package cream cheese softened

1 cup of sugar

1 can of evaporated milk, chilled

Melt butter in frying pan. Add graham crackers crumbs and gently toast, stirring to prevent burning. Line the bottom of an 8-by-10-inch pan with half of the crumbs.

In a mixing bowl, add 1 cup of boiling water to Jell-o. Refrigerate until it just begins to set – do not let it set completely.

In another mixing bowl combine 1 cup of sugar to the cream cheese and whip together.

In another bowl whip the chilled evaporated milk until stiff like whipping cream. Fold in cream cheese mixture and Jell-o mixture and mix until creamy.

Pour over graham cracker crumbs in pan and sprinkle top with remaining crumbs. (Can be inverted if placed in a specially shaped pan or mold.)

Refrigerate. Serves 8-12

Linda’s cinnamon/caramel rolls

1 cup of warm milk

1 teaspoon of salt

1/2 cup butter

1/3 cup sugar

2 large eggs

Place the above ingredients into your bread machine and add 4 1/2 cups of flour and 3 teaspoons of yeast. Combine ingredients in your machine’s dough cycle.

When cycle ends, roll out dough, spread with butter and sprinkle with desired amounts of sugar and cinnamon. Roll up flattened dough and slice into rolls. Put in pans and let rise one hour.

For cinnamon rolls: Bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes and frost with your favorite powdered sugar frosting. Linda adds a little cinnamon to the frosting.

For caramel rolls: Heat just until melted:

1/2 cup of butter

1 cup of brown sugar

1 cup of vanilla ice cream

Pour caramel into a greased 9-by-13-inch cake pan and set unbaked roll slices on top of caramel. Let rise for one hour and bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Let cool about five minutes and turn over onto a cookie sheet or tray. Serve.

Contact Robyn Kruger at rangerob@hickorytech.net.

Please Enter Your Facebook App ID. Required for FB Comments. Click here for FB Comments Settings page