By Sparta Live | November 14, 2006 12:00 am
Thanksgiving is the time of year when people reflect on all the blessings they have been given, and for one White County lady it is the most enjoyable holiday of the year.
Kathy Stamper has been cooking Thanksgiving Dinner for her family 57 years, and she finds much joy and pleasure in preparing a bountiful feast for the ones she loves.
“I have cooked Thanksgiving dinner all these years,” said Stamper, “and I guess I always will,” One year, all the kids had obligations to spend the holiday with other family members, but I cooked it all anyway and sat down and ate by myself.”
This year, two of her children and their families are planning to be home for the holiday, and Stamper is looking forward to preparing all their favorites.
“I love cooking turkey dinner because you only have it once a year, and it never gets old,” said Stamper.
Stamper is well known among her church family and friends as being an excellent cook and has shared her secrets for the perfect holiday feast. Her menu includes turkey, ham, dressing, green beans, corn, sweet potato casserole, cranberry salad, cranberry sauce, fruit salad, rolls, chocolate pie, apple pie, pumpkin pie and usually a cake.
She starts preparing several days before and makes everything from scratch.
Stamper cans her own apple pie filling and green beans, as well as “putting up” her own corn.
Stamper buys a large turkey so she can make leftover sandwiches, salad and casseroles after the holiday.
“I love cooking,” said Stamper, “and Thanksgiving is the most enjoyable time of the year because all the kids come home, and we reflect on all the ways God has blessed our family.”
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Clean the turkey well (Stamper does not stuff turkey)
Melt butter and pour on top
Salt inside and out
Wrap in foil
Cook about 18 minutes per pound (package will have exact time per pound for specific turkey)
Toast bread to harden
Make cornbread and let sit out to harden
Crumble together toasted bread and cornbread
Chop up celery and onion and add to bread mixture
Sprinkle sage and poultry seasoning in mixture
Let sit overnight
The next morning add turkey broth and mix to desired consistency.
Put in baking dish and put butter on top
Bake at 350 degrees
1 lb. cranberries
3 pkg. red Jell-O
1-1/2 or 2 cups sugar
1 cup chopped pecans
Grind berries. Grate rind on one lemon and one orange.
Add chopped nuts.
Dissolve the Jell-O and sugar in 3-1/2 cups boiling water. Cool to room temperature. Add juice of orange and lemons.
Add cranberries, nuts and rind. Put in 9X13X2 pan and chill.
Stamper’s famous chocolate pie
(“I cheat on the crust,” she said. “I don’t always make it from scratch. Sometimes I buy the crust.”)
1 cup sugar
4 heaping tablespoons flour
3 heaping tablespoons cocoa
3 eggs separated (put the yolks in a 2-cup measuring cup and fill the remainder of the cup with milk)
Mix together and cook on stovetop while slowly stirring (It will stick if not stirred.)
Beat well after cooking.
Add 1 teaspoon vanilla and 1/2 stick butter mix and pour into shell
Whip eggs until stiff add 1 teaspoon sugar, beat again
Pour on top of chocolate and bake on 350 until brown. (Watch closely making sure not to burn.)