Join the West Virginia Symphony League

Time to take down and put all your Christmas decorations away for another year, but not me — I will probably keep them up until the last of January. Since it took me nearly two weeks to get everything put up and decorated, I want to have plenty of time to enjoy everything. I am no longer a spring chicken so it takes me longer and more energy to do the things I want to do.

I like to decorate, so who knows, I may even keep them up to Valentines Day!

January is a more quiet and down time following all the excitement and craziness in December and the house looks so empty after all the decorations have been taken down.

Now in January, we must all adjust to the promises of things we want to do and start in the new year.

I am happy to announce that the West Virginia Symphony League-Parkersburg “Twelve Days of Christmas” fundraiser was very successful and I am also personally thrilled that this year’s winner of the grand prize was Jane Linscott, a dear and long-time friend of mine. I want to thank all of our supporters for your generosity and help during the year and want you to know that it is deeply appreciated.

I missed one meeting and the symphony committee punished me by committing me to add my Greek cooked meal to whoever this year’s winner might be.

The WVSL- Parkersburg would love to have new members joining our organization this year. It is for a great purpose providing great classical music for Wood County students and plus an enjoyable experience.

Season tickets are available by calling 304-485-4200. The next concert will take place at 3 p.m. Sunday, February 10 at the Blennerhassett Junior High School. The program on February 10 will feature Tony Desare —“SINATRA & BEYOND”

This is a great opportunity to expose and introduce your children and friends to good quality enjoyable music.

In last week’s newspaper there was a list of all the loved ones that departed this earth in 2018, which makes one stop and think, so live everyday to your fullest and enjoy life.

Until next week.

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Mushroom Spinach Salad

8 bacon strips, diced

1 1/2 cups thinly sliced fresh mushrooms

1 medium red onion, thinly sliced

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

10 ounces fresh spinach, torn

1/4 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese

2 hard-boiled eggs, sliced

In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, remove to paper towels to drain. Saute mushrooms and onion in drippings. Stir in vinegar. In a large bowl, combine the spinach, walnuts, cheese and bacon; toss with mushroom mixture. Top with egg slices.

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Cheese Croutons

3 eggs

2 cups shredded Swiss cheese

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons grated Romano cheese

1 1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

In a large bowl, beat eggs. In another bowl, combine the remaining ingredients; gradually add to eggs. Spread evenly into a parchment paper-lined 9-inch square baking pan. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan; cut into 1-inch cubes. Increase temperature to 450. Place cubes on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake 10 minutes longer, turning once. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

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California Tossed Salad

2 jars marinated quartered artichoke hearts, undrained

2 jars whole mushrooms, drained

1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes

1 1/2 cups cubed Monterey Jack cheese

2 large ripe avocados, peeled and cubed

1 6-ounce can pitted ripe olives, drained

2 tablespoons lemon juice

4 cups torn romaine

In a large bowl, combine the first 7 ingredients. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Just before serving, add romaine and toss to coat.

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Colorful Brunch Frittata

1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces

1/2 pound sliced fresh mushrooms

1 medium sweet red pepper, diced

1 medium sweet yellow pepper, diced

1 small onion, chopped

2 green onions, chopped

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

3 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped

14 eggs, lightly beaten

2 cups half-and-half cream

2 cups shredded Colby-Monterey Jack cheese

2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

3 tablespoons minced fresh basil

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

In a large skillet, saute the asparagus, mushrooms, peppers and onions in oil until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Add tomatoes, set aside. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, cream, Colby-Monterey Jack cheese, parsley, basil, salt and pepper; stir into vegetable mixture. Pour into a greased 13×9 baking dish. Bake, uncovered, at 350 for 45 minutes. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake 10-15 minutes longer or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting.

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Hot Fruit Compote

2 15 1/2-ounce cans sliced pears, drained

1 29-ounce can sliced peaches, drained

1 20-ounce can unsweetened pineapple chunks, drained

1 20-ounce package pitted dried plums

1 16-ounce jar unsweetened applesauce

1 21-ounce can cherry pie filling

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

In a large bowl, combine the first 5 ingredients. Pour into a 13×9 baking dish coated with cooking spray. Spread pie filling over fruit mixture, sprinkle with brown sugar. Cover and bake at 250 for 40-45 minutes or until bubbly. Serve warm.

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Kiki Angelos is a longtime food columnist for the Parkersburg News and Sentinel.

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