St. John’s Eats

We just wouldn’t be Lutheran if we didn’t have lots and lots (and lots!) of food!
Here are some goodies that we thought were particularly tasty:

Strawberry Pretzel Squares (Kraft Foods)

provided by Kristine Harwood

  • 2 cups finely crushed pretzels
  • ½ cup sugar, divided
  • 2/3 cup butter or margarine, melted
  • 12 oz (1 ½ 8 oz. pkg.) cream cheese, softened
  • 2 Tbsp. milk
  • 1 cup thawed Cool Whip
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 pkg. (8-serving size) strawberry gelatin
  • 1 ½ cups cold water
  • 1 qt. (4 cups) strawberries, sliced

Preheat oven to 350°F. Mix pretzels, 1/4 cup of the sugar and the butter. Press firmly onto bottom of 13 x 9-inch baking pan. Bake 10 minutes. Cool.

Beat cream cheese, the remaining ¼ cup sugar and milk until well blended. Gently stir in whipped topping. Spread over crust. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Meanwhile, stir boiling water into gelatin in large bowl at least 2 minutes until completely dissolved. Stir in cold water. Refrigerate 1 ½ hours or until thickened (spoon drawn through leaves definite impression).
Stir in strawberries (or press them into the cream cheese layer). Spoon gelatin over cream cheese layer. Refrigerate 3 hours or until firm. Cut into 20 squares to serve. Store leftover dessert in refrigerator.

Makes 20 servings, 1 square each.

Calories: 200, Fat 13g, Carb 20g

Note: may be made with lower fat ingredients

Cracked Wheat Bread

Kristine Harwood’s award-winning bread recipe!

Original recipe:

  • 2 cups 100% cracked wheat
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsps. butter
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 packages active dry yeast
  • ½ cup warm water
  • 5 to 5 ½ cups unbleached white flour

Combine cracked wheat, brown sugar, butter and salt in large mixing bowl. Pour boiling water over mixture. Let cool to warm. Meanwhile soften yeast in warm water. Combine both mixtures. Gradually beat in 4 cups of flour. Turn onto floured surface and knead in enough of the remaining flour to make moderately stiff dough. Continue kneading for 8 to 10 minutes. Place dough in greased bowl, turning to grease surface. Cover and let rise in warm place until double, about 1 ½ hours. Punch down, divide dough in two portions and shape in two loaves. Place in greased loaf pans (8 ½ x 4 ½ x 2 ½ or 9 x 5 x 3 – inch) and turn to grease surface. Let rise until double, about 1 hour and 20 minutes. Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes. Makes two loaves.

Adapted for bread machine:

  • 1 cup 100% cracked wheat or cracked 7-grain
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  • 1/2 Tbsp. salt
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 2 ½ cups unbleached white flour and 1 Tbsp. gluten
  • or 2 ½ cups bread flour

Combine cracked wheat, brown sugar, butter and salt in large mixing bowl.
Pour boiling water over mixture. Let cool to warm. Meanwhile soften yeast in
warm water. Combine both mixtures and pour into machine’s baking pan. Put
flour on top, or per your machine’s directions for dry ingredients.

I use the sweet bread setting on the machine because it has an extra
rising time and the whole grain breads turn out best on that setting.

Uncle Don’s One Dish Breakfast

made by Kristine Harwood and Elaine Ryerson for Linda Schmitt’s 20th Anniversary brunch on July 9, 2006

  • ½ lb sausage
  • ¾ cup sliced mushrooms
  • ¼ cup sliced green onions
  • ½ lb. Velveeta cheese, cubed
  • 4 cups bread, cubed into ¾ inch squares
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 eggs

Brown sausage. Stir in mushroom and onions. Put bread into a bowl or pan. Add sausage mixture and cheese, mixing as you go. Place into a baking dish. (recipe doubles well for a 9×13 pan) Beat eggs and milk. Pour over the mixture in the baking dish. Let stand overnight if you wish. Put a few pats of butter on top and bake about 50 minutes at 350 degrees.

Rhubarb-Cinnamon Muffins

made by Kristine Harwood for Linda Schmitt’s 20th Anniversary brunch on July 9, 2006


  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 c. plain yogurt or buttermilk
  • 1/4 c. oil
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 3/4 c. chopped rhubarb


  • 2 c. flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon (I use a little more)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Mix wet and dry ingredients separately, then combine. Bake 25 minutes at 375.

Simple Spinach Salad

made by Connie Avey for the Food for Thought book group on May 13, 2006

  • 1 bag (6 ounces) fresh baby spinach
  • 1 cup chopped cucumber
  • 1 cup fresh broccoli florets
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins (if golden not available, regular raisins work fine)
  • 1/2 cup bacon bits
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/4 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion


  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

In a large salad bowl, combine the spinach, cucumber, broccoli, raisins, bacon bits, almonds, mushrooms, and onion. In a small bowl, whisk the dressing ingredients until smooth. Drizzle over salad and toss to coat.
Yield: 9 servings (For the Food for Thought group, I doubled the recipe.)

Taco Soup

made by Elaine Ryerson for Lenten Wednesday supper, March 15, 2006

cook and drain 2 lbs. ground beef and 1 small chopped onion.

Put the following items all together in large six-quart crock pot:
(do not drain any of the canned items)

  • cooked meat and onion
  • 2 cans Pinto beans
  • 1 can Hormel Chili with peppers
  • 1 can Mexican-style stewed tomatoes( with peppers, garlic, & cumin)
  • 1 can Rotel Tomatoes & Green Chilies
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups sour cream
  • 1 lb. Velvetta cheese- cubed
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic salt
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper

Heat in crock pot on high for one hour, then on low for 2 or more hours. Serve with crushed Doritos on top

Triple Peanut Pizza

from Connie Avey

  • 1 tube (18 oz) refrigerated peanut butter cookie dough
  • 1 cup (or a 6 oz bag) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups chopped peanut butter cups (about 15 large)

Press cookie dough onto a greased 14 inch pizza pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Sprinkle with chocolate chips; let stand for 4-5 minutes. Spread melted chips over crust. Freeze for 10 minutes or until set.

Meanwhile, in a small mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, peanut butter, brown sugar, and vanilla until creamy. Spread over the chocolate. Sprinkle with the peanut butter cups. Chill until serving. Refrigerate leftovers. Yield: 12-14 slices.

(I used an oblong baking stone instead of the pizza pan and was able to get more than the 12-14 pieces.)

Creamy Potato Soup

from an Amish Cookbook
made by Kristine Harwood for Lenten Wednesday supper, March 15, 2006

  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 large potatoes, diced
  • 3 Tbsp. parsley, chopped
  • 3 stalks celery and leaves, chopped
  • 2 large carrots, chopped or grated
  • 2 tsp. salt (note: this can be reduced)
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika
  • 1 1/2 cups boiling water
  • White sauce (see below)

Saute onion in butter until tender. Add remaining ingredients except white sauce and cook until vegetables are tender. Add white sauce and stir until combined.

White Sauce

  • 4 cups milk
  • 2 Tblsp. flour
  • 4 Tblsp. butter
  • 2 chicken bouillon cubes
  • 1 tsp. salt (note: this could be reduced here too)
  • ¼ tsp. pepper

Mix ½ cup milk with flour. Heat remaining milk just to boiling. Add flour mixture and stir constantly until thickened. Add remaining ingredients and stir until bouillon cubes are dissolved.

Note: Don’t boil the milk or the soup after the white sauce has been added. I added ground sausage, cooked, when I made this soup.

Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Custom Websites by Graddy Solutions