DEAR SOS: I would like to offer an alternate response to Miriam for the "typical" noodle kugel as presented in the Culinary SOS column. I believe it is more flexible (and tastier), and can be presented hot or cold if made the day before.
DEAR JAN: Because so many readers have offered their "alternate" versions of noodle kugel, we thought we would print your recipe, which can be modified with seasonings and other ingredients suggested by readers.
For example, Colette of Redondo Beach suggests adding Dijon mustard and hot pepper sauce, parsley and grated sharp Cheddar cheese to the basic mixture. And Seiver of Los Angeles adds chopped apples and white raisins and substitutes 2 eggs plus 3 beaten egg whites for the eggs called for.
JAN'S NOODLE KUGEL
2 cups milk
1 cup cottage cheese
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup golden raisins
2 tablespoons vanilla
1 pound egg noodles
2 tablespoons butter, melted
Combine eggs, milk, cheese, sour cream, sugar to taste, raisins, vanilla and salt to taste. In pot cook noodles in boiling, salted water. Then drain. Place noodles in 13x9-inch baking dish. Add egg mixture. Adjust seasonings to taste. Pour melted butter over top. Bake at 375 degrees until set and golden, about 45 minutes. Makes 8 servings.
Each serving contains about:
466 calories; 254 mg sodium; 189 mg cholesterol; 16 grams fat; 63 grams carbohydrates; 17 grams protein; 0.35 gram fiber.
* Note : For sweet kugel, add cinnamon, nuts and more sugar to taste to egg mixture. For savory kugel use less sugar.
DEAR SOS: Sometime in the '20s my half-sister used a recipe for upside-down fruit pudding that our family enjoyed immensely. Unfortunately, the recipe disappeared from our family trove. By any chance can you duplicate this recipe?
DEAR HARRIET: We don't have the original recipe you requested, but you can try this updated version, which might work. It was also known as dump cake because the ingredients are dumped in a pan and baked.
UGLY DUCKLING PUDDING CAKE
1 (1-pound, 2 1/4-ounce) package yellow cake mix
1 (1.1-ounce) package lemon-flavored instant pudding and pie filling mix
1 (1-pound) can fruit cocktail
1 cup flake coconut
1/4 cup oil
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional
Blend together yellow cake mix, pudding mix, fruit cocktail with syrup, coconut, eggs and oil in large mixer bowl. Beat 4 minutes at medium speed of electric mixer. Pour into greased and floured 9x13-inch pan. Sprinkle with brown sugar and nuts.
Bake at 325 degrees 45 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly pressed and pulls away from sides of pan. Do not underbake. Cool in pan 15 minutes. Spoon hot Butter Glaze over warm cake. Serve warm or cool with prepared whipped topping, if desired. Makes 1 (13x9-inch) cake, or 8 servings.
Each serving contains about:
756 calories; 697 mg sodium; 142 mg cholesterol; 35 grams fat; 109 grams carbohydrates; 7 grams protein; 0.70 gram fiber.
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup evaporated milk
1 1/3 cups flake coconut
Combine butter, sugar and milk in saucepan. Boil 2 minutes. Stir in coconut.
DEAR SOS: I am looking for a cheese spread made with jalapeno chiles and sharp Cheddar cheese. Do you have a recipe?
DEAR HERBERT: We love this timeless chile-cheese spread recipe from the late James Beard's syndicated column when it ran in The Times many years ago. We also happen to prefer that strong, characteristic Cheddar bite.
JAMES BEARD'S CHEDDAR-CHILE SPREAD
1/2 pound grated sharp Cheddar cheese, at room temperature
2 canned jalapeno chiles, chopped
1/2 can pimientos, chopped
1 small clove garlic, grated
1/2 cup softened butter
3 to 4 tablespoons brandy, Sherry or bourbon
Few drops hot pepper sauce
Half and half or milk, optional
Chopped toasted nuts, chopped parsley, or chopped chives, optional
Mix cheese, chiles, pimiento, garlic, butter, brandy, pepper sauce and salt to taste in electric mixture or blender, or mash with fork until mixture is of desired spreading consistency. If too stiff, add half and half or milk, few teaspoons at time, until desired consistency is reached.
Serve in crock or form into large ball or log. Then roll in chopped toasted nuts, chopped parsley or chives to taste. Serve with crackers, Melba toast or sliced French bread. Makes about 2 1/2 cups.
Each 1-tablespoon serving contains about:
47 calories; 66 mg sodium; 12 mg cholesterol; 4 grams fat; 0 carbohydrates; 2 grams protein; 0.05 gram fiber.