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Have Homemade Tastes Without The Hassle This Holiday

Contributed by: NAPSA

Have Homemade Tastes Without The Hassle This Holiday
(NAPSA) - For many home cooks, the holidays are the time of year to pull out all the stops and make a special meal from scratch. Yet with the demands of office parties, driving the kids to school pageant rehearsals and shopping for gifts, cooking a traditional holiday dinner from start to finish can be a stressful rather than pleasurable experience.

With the right mix of creativity and modern conveniences though, you can save time for the more involved dishes by utilizing timesaving tips and simple recipes on must-have dishes such as mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie.

"With the chaos of the holidays, families have less time to create elaborate meals. But we still want to feel that we're doing something special," says Jenny Harper, director of recipe development for Carnation Evaporated Milk. "A remarkable meal can be accomplished with easy recipes that demonstrate your love for your family."

For example, you can save time spent to cook and mash potatoes by using instant mashed potatoes. Just add evaporated milk instead of water or regular milk and your mashed potatoes will have a rich and creamy, homemade taste. Even recipes such as pumpkin pie are easy to make. Just mix, pour and bake! There's nothing better than the smell of a freshly baked pie that fills your home with holiday scents. Best of all, without the extra time spent on these must-have dishes, you'll be able to spend more time on the stuffing for the turkey.

Here are some other timesaving tips that are sure to make the homemade holiday meal easier.

  • Inspire creativity amongst guests. Rather than frosting all the holiday cookies yourself, invite your guests to take part in the fun! All you need is a batch of white frosting, a variety of food colorings and sprinkles.

  • Guests love to feel involved. Think through the menu ahead of time and ask guests to bring a favorite side dish to share.

  • Making several recipes at once? Save time by chopping the amount of vegetables and herbs you need, such as onions, carrots and parsley, at the same time.

Here are two recipe ideas that will impress your holiday guests with easy, homemade flavor.

Libby's Homemade Pumpkin Pie

  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 can (15 oz.) LIBBY'S 100% Pure Pumpkin
  • 1 can (12 fl. oz.) NESTLÉ CARNATION Evaporated Milk
  • 1 unbaked 9-inch (4-cup volume) deep-dish pie shell
  • Whipped cream (optional)

MIX sugar, salt and spice in small bowl. Beat eggs in large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk.

POUR into pie shell.

BAKE in preheated 425 F oven for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350 F; bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours. Serve immediately or refrigerate. Top with whipped cream.

Makes 8 Servings

Sweet Potato And Pineapple Puree

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter or margarine
  • 2 lbs. (about 3 large) sweet potatoes, cooked, peeled
  • 2/3 cup (5 fl. oz. can) NESTLÉ CARNATION Evaporated Milk
  • 1 can (81/2 oz.) crushed pineapple, drained, divided
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Fresh mint or parsley leaves (optional)

MELT butter on medium low heat in large saucepan; remove from heat. Add sweet potatoes; mash with a fork or spoon. Add evaporated milk. Reserve 2 tablespoons pineapple for garnish. Stir remaining pineapple, sugar and cinnamon into sweet potato mixture.

Cook on low heat, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes or until part of liquid evaporates. Serve warm. Garnish with reserved pineapple and mint leaves, if desired.

Prep time: 1 hour - Cooking Time: 15 minutes

Makes 8 Servings


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