Friday, November 29, 2013

Holiday Recipes - Part One

Season’s greetings! One of the best parts of this magical time of the year is the festive food we enjoy at family gatherings and on cold winter nights throughout the season. This December we will be sharing some of our staff’s favorite holiday recipes and encourage you to try them yourself! Of course a lot of the time these kinds of dishes are tied to a tradition or memory so the staff may also reflect on what their choice means to them or why it is their favorite. Have fun trying out the staff’s favorite recipes and for more seasonal meals and treats check out one of the library’s many holiday cookbooks!

Our first recipe is from Jessica Lawrence. Jess is sharing a traditional family recipe for Dilly Bread. The dish is very special to her and sounds delicious! 


It has been a tradition for the past 40 years in the Lawrence family to make Dilly Bread at every family gathering. It is simple, but filled with so much flavor and love. It always looks so lovely on the holiday table steaming fresh from the oven and with the scent of butter and dill unfurling in your nose. It is so well-loved that it makes other appearances throughout the year, but is an absolute necessity at every holiday meal. 

It was a prize-winning recipe in the 1960 Pillsbury Bake-Off Contest, but the matriarch of the Lawrence family got the recipe from a magazine and started making it in the 1970s. She has since passed it down to almost every member in the family and from there it has been shared with friends, neighbors and co-workers across the country who continue to share the recipe with their friends, neighbors and co-workers. 

I enjoyed it at the very first Christmas celebration I spent with my husband's family, and he has made it for me every year since then. This year, I tried my own hand at making it and shared it at my family's Thanksgiving feast. It turned out fabulously, and I was glad I brought copies of the recipe to hand out! 

I am thrilled to be able to spread the love and tastiness on to you. I hope you enjoy it as much as our families do.


2 to 2 2/3 cups all purpose flour 
2 tablespoons sugar 
2 to 3 teaspoons minced onion 
2 teaspoons dill seed (or to taste)
2 teaspoons dill weed (or to taste)
1 teaspoon salt 
1/4 teaspoon baking soda 
1 pkg. active dry yeast
1/4 cup water 
1 tablespoon margarine or butter 
1 cup small curd cottage cheese 
1 egg 
2 teaspoons butter, melted 
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt, if desired 

1. In large bowl, combine 1 cup flour, sugar, onion, dill seed, 1 teaspoon salt, baking soda and yeast (mix yeast with warm water first as described in instructions); mix well.

2. In small saucepan, heat water, 1 tablespoon butter and cottage cheese until pretty warm (120°F.). Add warm liquid and egg to flour mixture; blend at low speed until moistened. Beat 3 minutes at medium speed.

3. By hand, stir in remaining 1 to 1 2/3 cups flour to form a stiff batter. Cover loosely with greased plastic wrap and cloth towel. Let rise in warm place (80 to 85°F.) until light and doubled in size, 45 to 60 minutes. 

4. Generously grease 1 1/2 or 2-quart casserole dish or loaf pan(s). Press down batter to remove all air bubbles. Turn into greased dish. Cover; let rise in warm place until light and doubled in size, 30 to 45 minutes.

5. Heat oven to 350°F. Uncover dough. Bake 30 to 40 minutes or until loaf is deep golden brown and sounds hollow when lightly tapped. If necessary, cover with foil to prevent over-browning. Remove from dish; place on wire rack. Brush loaf with melted butter; sprinkle with coarse salt. Cool 15 minutes. Serve warm with pads of butter on each slice.


For more seasonal recipes check out one of our holiday cookbooks.  The library has a great selection of holiday recipe books that can be found in the nonfiction section both on the main floor and children’s floor. We have a large variety of seasonal reading so also be sure to browse our holiday displays. Happy holidays! 

Posted by Terry Pierson, Library Clerk and Jessica Lawrence, Librarian