Regional cooks share their recipes


Even for those of us who don’t cook much any­more or have draw­ers stuffed with rec­i­pes, there is al­ways room for an­other cook­book.

That’s what Don Bright of Bowl­ing Green wrote in the note tucked in­side the Ohio Re­tired Teach­ers As­so­ci­a­tion Favor­ite Rec­i­pes. “I thought you needed an­other cook­book,” Mr. Bright wrote. He was jok­ing, but I al­ways en­joy a new cook­book, es­pe­cially those that are lo­cally pro­duced.

Frank Dick of Adrian made a sim­i­lar com­ment be­fore mail­ing Home Grown Rec­i­pes Vol­ume Three that was pub­lished by Gleaner Life In­sur­ance So­ci­ety and is ded­i­cated to his late wife, Shir­ley Dick.

The two cook­books fea­ture rec­i­pes from home kitch­ens that are not al­ways found in the large cof­fee ta­ble books that come with high price tags and of­ten with rec­i­pes that don’t fit into the av­er­age per­son’s bud­get or their time sched­ule.

Each book is rea­son­ably priced and pro­ceeds are for a worth­while cause.

Sales from the Ohio teach­ers’ col­lec­tion, rep­re­sent­ing the 90 as­so­ci­a­tions through­out the state and in cel­e­bra­tion of the 65th an­ni­ver­sary, go into the schol­ar­ship fund.

Pro­ceeds from Home Grown Rec­i­pes Vol­ume Three are given to the Emma Bixby Hos­pi­tal Med­i­cal Center Aux­il­iary in Adrian and to the Adrian Com­mu­nity Nurs­ery, a pre­school pro­gram, in mem­ory of Mrs. Dick.

Mrs. Dick gained a ded­i­cated fol­low­ing along with thou­sands of rec­i­pes in The Rec­ipe File, her col­umn that was pub­lished from 1986 to 2010 in the Na­tional Gleaner Fo­rum, a quar­terly mag­a­zine. Read­ers re­call that she fre­quently sea­soned the col­umns with per­sonal notes, like “this is re­ally good” or “not a fa­vor­ite.”

“Shir­ley was an ex­cel­lent cook, “ Mr. Dick said. They were mar­ried for 64 years.

He was the chief taster of the hun­dreds of rec­i­pes she tested through the years and can’t re­call even one dis­ap­point­ment. Mr. Dick de­fines the rec­i­pes as “down to earth and ru­ral,” re­flect­ing her back­ground grow­ing up in Jerry City, Ohio.

The Dicks moved to Adrian from Toledo in 1981 two years af­ter he be­came pres­i­dent of the Gleaner or­ga­ni­za­tion. A for­mer su­per­in­ten­dent of Toledo Pub­lic Schools, Mr. Dick re­tired from Gleaner in 2000, but Mrs. Dick con­tin­ued her rec­ipe col­umn.

Shortly af­ter Mr. Dick be­came Gleaner pres­i­dent in 1979, Mrs. Dick com­piled her first cook­book us­ing rec­i­pes culled from Gleaner mem­bers. A sec­ond cook­book was pub­lished in 1985.

After her death in 2010, the third cook­book was de­vel­oped by Mary Stout, wife of Ells­worth Stout, for­mer Gleaner pres­i­dent, and the com­mu­ni­ca­tion de­part­ment. Rec­i­pes from the first two cook­books are in­cluded in the third vol­ume along with new en­tries.

Just as they were in the first two vol­umes, the rec­i­pes are cred­ited to Gleaner mem­bers in Mich­i­gan, Ohio, In­di­ana, Il­li­nois, and Flor­ida who con­trib­uted them.

Mr. Bright was chair­man of the state­wide com­mit­tee that spent a year as­sem­bling the cook­book. He ad­mits that sift­ing through the 900 rec­i­pes re­ceived to de­cide on the 450 pub­lished was dif­fi­cult. “The rec­ipe had to be fairly sim­ple to make and be prac­ti­cal,” he said.

Rec­i­pes and cook­ing are old hat to the re­tired teacher in vo­ca­tional busi­ness ed­u­ca­tion at Bowl­ing Green State Univer­sity. For 20 years he was in charge of the sup­pers at First Meth­od­ist Church in Bowl­ing Green. His pop­u­lar ham loaves and bar­be­cued meat­balls are in the book.

The Re­tired Teach­ers As­so­ci­a­tion Favor­ites is $10, plus $2 post­age and can be or­dered through Don Bright, 9 Bain­bridge Way, Bowl­ing Green, Ohio, 43404. Home Grown Rec­i­pes Vol­ume Three is $15, plus $6 post­age, and can be or­dered through i­cations@gleanerlife.comcom­mu­n or by call­ing the com­mu­ni­ca­tions de­part­ment at 800-992-1894.

Mary Alice Pow­ell is a re­tired Blade food ed­i­tor.

Con­tact her at: mpow­ell@the­

Shirley Dick’s Pumpkin Cake

with Lemon Frosting

1 box yellow cake mix

2 eggs

1 cup canned pumpkin

2 teaspoons cinnamon

½ teaspoon ginger

½ teaspoon nutmeg

½ cup, or less, water

½ to 1 cup chopped nuts


1 cup powdered sugar

1 teaspoon lemon juice

½ teaspoon grated lemon peel.

Milk for frosting consistency

Combine and mix well the cake mix, eggs, pumpkin, spices, and ½ cup, or less water.

When mixed stir in nuts. Spoon into a lightly greased and floured bundt pan. Bake in 350-degree oven 45 to 50 minutes until it tests done. Be sure cake is cool before frosting the top.

For frosting, combine powdered sugar, lemon juice, and grated peel. Add just enough milk for thin frosting consistency and drizzle.

Don Bright’s 8 Ham Loaves

1 pound ground ham

½ pound ground fresh pork

½ pound ground chuck beef

2 eggs

1 teaspoon dried minced onion

8 soda crackers, crushed into crumbs

1 tablespoon ketchup

1 teaspoon mustard

½ cup milk


4 tablespoons ketchup

4 teaspoons mustard

4 tablespoons brown sugar

Combine meats with eggs, onion, cracker crumbs, ketchup, mustard, and milk. Mix gently but thoroughly before forming into 8 individual loaves and placing on baking sheet.

Combine topping ingredients. Make an indentation in the top of each loaf with thumb and spoon 1 teaspoon topping into it. Bake 2 hours in 300-degree oven.

Cook’s notes: Do not grind the meats together, but buy separately and mix gently. The pork and chuck beef neutralize the salt in the ham.