Apple Pudding

Pudding with a bread-like density and texture.

Original recipe:

1 egg
1 cup sugar
1 cup chopped apples
1/2 cup chopped nuts
6 tblsp. flour
3/4 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
stir & bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour


Lisa’s blender adaptation:

3 small apples, chunked
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
1/2 cup nuts (cashew, almond, pistachio trail mix)
12 tbslp. flour
1 tsp. baking power
3/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
blend & bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour

Corn Fritters – Mary Schmidt Schwaller


“I only eat Corn Fritters with butter and syrup – simple and delicious.” Mary Schmidt Schwaller, niece of Betty Wrysinski

This recipe for Corn Fritters came from the 1949 edition of Joy of Cooking. (My mom wrote it out by hand for me as part of a wedding shower gift.)

1 cup cooked green corn or canned corn.

Drain and mash with a potato masher.

Beat until light and add:

2 eggs


6 tblsp. flour

1/2 tsp. any baking powder

1/8 tsp. nutmeg

Melt in a small skillet:

2 tblsp. butter

When it is very hot, add the batter by the tablespoonful. Permit the bottom of the cakes to brown, reverse them and brown the other side.


In the Joy of Cooking, the recipe begins with this story.  My mom used to read to me.

When I was a child, one of eight, my father frequently promised us a marvelous treat. He, being an amateur horticulturist and arborculturist, would tell us of a fritter tree he was going to plant on the banks of a small lake filled with molasses, maple syrup or honey, to be located in our back yard. When one of our children felt the urge for the most delectable repast, all we had to do was to shake the tree, the fritters would drop into the lake and we could fish them  out and  eat fritters to our hearts’ content.

My mother was a good cook and a good helpmate, so she developed the fritter that was to grow on and fall from the tree into the lake of molasses or maple syrup or honey, as the case might be. Mr. William N. Matthews.

Joy of Cooking, 1949 excerpt, reprinted with publisher permission.


Guest Post by Mary Schmidt Schwaller


Adrian (Bud) and Virginia (Ginger) Windus Schmidt

While researching genealogy, I found Lisa’s Shared Tastes blog. It had pictures of my Aunt Betty as well as some of her recipes.  It was clear that she left her mark on her family. I wish I had known her.  We both entered apple pies in contests.  She won first place, I won second.


Adrian (Bud) and Virginia (Ginger) Schmidt on their wedding day. (Mary Schmidt Schwaller’s parents.)

There is a picture of a birthday celebration; the meal was pork roast and sauerkraut.  My dad Adrian, Betty’s younger brother, loved that meal.  He used to say, “If I die today, I will die a happy man,” after eating it.  This tradition lives on in Park Falls as this meal is served at most restaurants for “Sunday supper.”

We didn’t have much money so my parents had to be inventive when trying to create special treats.   I clearly remember Sunday evening Disney movies on the TV and the dining room table full of homemade deep fried potato chips and French fries.   The recipe would be as you would expect, fresh potatoes, boiling oil, and lots of salt.

I was asked to share a Wisconsin Schmidt recipe.  Every recipe I considered was already there from Grandma Betty.  Potato dumplings, casseroles, pork roast, etc.

Through the blog, I was able to connect with my California family.  I have gotten to know my cousin Mary and was lucky enough to meet my cousin Peggy in October, 2016.  It is odd how similar our lives have been even though we lived so far apart.



Lisa’s Notes about Names:

I asked my Aunt Mary (family historian) to help sort out the names for this post. Her response clarified why the confusion exists:

“Bud equals Adrian.  Betty equals Elisabeth.  Josie equals Joanne.  Stanley equals Gus.”

“I asked Uncle Bud (Adrian Schmidt) once if anyone was ever called by their given name.  He said the German community in Park Falls had nicknames for a lot of people.  Below is part of an article he wrote for 100 Years on the Flambeau, a local history book about the Price County area in upper Wisconsin.  Apparently nicknames were a tradition.”







Mini – Pineapple Upside Down Cakes


The Cake


2/3 cup sugar (can substitute applesauce….but may need to add more flour if it makes the mixture too ‘soupy.’)

4 tablespoons pineapple juice

2/3 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

The Topping

1/4 cup butter (1/2 stick or 4 tablespoons)

2/3 cup brown sugar

1 (14 ounce) can pineapple rings or crushed pineapple (drained)

maraschino cherries

Set oven at 350°. Spray or coat muffin tins with oil (nut oils such as almond or hazelnut work well.)

In a mixing bowl, blend together wet ingredients; eggs, sugar, and pineapple juice. Beat for 2 minutes. Add dry ingredients and mix till smooth.

In a sauce pan on low, melt  butter then add the brown sugar – stir constantly.  Remove heat once sugar is melted. *Watch this step closely so that the sugar doesn’t burn.

Build your mini cakes from the bottom up. 1st add a tablespoon of the butter / sugar mixture to each muffin tin. Next, place  cherry in the middle, top this with the pineapple then add enough batter to fill the muffin up to the half-way mark.

Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a wooden pick in the center of cakes comes out clean.

five minute ficitonShort Fiction paired with the Recipe

Sarah’s Words – a woman uses baking to express her feelings

Sarah picked up the salt dish. As she held the small, decorative container in the palm of her hand, her thoughts drifted to another time. Aunt Rose gave this to me when I was twelve. She laughed so hard when I told her how I used to make fairy stew in it with the long-handled glass spoon. The fine lines at the edges of Sarah’s eyes deepened when she smiled.


Sarah gathered a small mound of the crystals between her forefinger and thumb. She gently rubbed them together over a pile of four so that that the Celtic Sea Salt would distribute evenly. In Aunt Rose’s, day the salt in this container would have been Morton’s.

These Mini Pineapple Upside Down Cakes are going to be so cute!  she thought as she hefted the bowl into the crook of her arm. Her hand and arm began to move in circular motions. The happy family recollections faded. A small frown appeared b as Sarah thought about why she was making the cakes.

Sarah didn’t consider herself an overly emotional person. She was proud of the fact that she was known for being ‘on point,’ extremely focused, dependable and very hard working. When people around her were suffering, her standard response was a pat on the back, and a gruff, “Just keep going, it will pass,” type of comment.

But this time was different.  Sarah had a hard time grappling with the reason for the gathering that she and her family were about to attend. Her standard responses would not apply here. For a well-educated and well-spoken person, Sarah was at a loss. She, truly, did not know what to say. So she poured her love, comfort and concern into the little cakes. She hoped that showing up, and the care that went into the baking of them would make a difference.

Ultra Chocolaty – Chocolate Coma Cake

Ultra Chocolaty - Chocolate Coma Cake

Ultra Chocolaty – Chocolate Coma Cake

Three 8″ round cake pans lined with wax paper.


5 oz. (1/2 a bag) Ghiradelli bitter sweet baking chips
16 oz. (two 8 oz. bars) Ghiradelli semi sweet chocolate bars
2  1/2 sticks butter
1 heaping cup of sugar
1/2 cup flour
12 egg yolks – slightly beaten
12 egg whites whipped into stiff peaks


Apricot Pineapple (or any other type of fruit) Jam
**fruit pie filling would also work well
Fresh pineapple (or other soft fruit) slices

Preheat oven to 350˚
Whip the egg whites and set aside.
Beat egg yolks set aside.
Have the sugar and flour measured and standing by in their measuring cups.

Break up chocolate bars into small pieces. On low heat, melt chocolate and butter. Constantly stir with wire whisk until everything is melted and smooth. Immediately remove from heat.

Pour chocolate / butter mixture into a large bowl. Slowly stir in egg yolks till completely mixed. Add sugar in the same manner followed by the flour. Once this is completely blended, add half of the whipped egg whites. Gently fold this in until thoroughly mixed. Repeat with remaining egg whites.

Pour batter into wax paper lined pans. Trim wax paper excess (otherwise it will smoke inside the oven).
Bake for 35-40 minutes until a thin crust forms on top (when it smells and looks done –  i.e. ‘spongy,’ gently and quickly tap on the top of the cake with with a finger to check for the crust. ( Caution: DO NOT try this if it still looks like batter as it will cause a burn.)

**the toothpick doneness method does not work with this cake.

Remove cakes from oven and let cool until the centers appear to sink. (This is normal….the sink holes are a perfect place to fill with wonderful things…) While still warm, flip them over onto a wire rack. Gently pull away the wax paper.

cake out of oven

Ganache Icing:

24 oz. (three 8 oz.) Ghiradelli semi sweet chocolate bars
approx. 1 cup heavy whipping cream

Break chocolate bars into small pieces. On low heat use wire whisk to gently stir until mixture is smooth. Slowly pour in small amounts of the whipping cream while whisking until desired consistency is achieved.  Let it cool some before frosting cake. (But not too long as the icing will harden.)


Place first layer of cake on a decorative dish. Gently spread fruit (jam or pie filling) evenly over the top leaving enough space around the edges so it won’t squeeze out when the next layer is put on.  [On the cake pictured above, I put fresh pineapple slices on the bottom layer only.] Repeat with cake and jam layering leaving the top of the cake jam / fruit free.  Once the cake has been assembled, gently trim any jaggedy edges with a large serrated knife.


Place cake in the refrigerator for a few hours to harden the frosting. (If you plan to put candles on…do that before it goes in the refrigerator.)

finished cake


Tiramisu – Kid Style

This ‘kids version’ of Tiramisu was a great hit in my son’s classroom for the holidays….especially because he made it all by himself.

This is a simple recipe that comes together quickly.

It’s a real confidence booster for an up-and-coming foodie.

tiramisu kid style

2 pkg. lady fingers

2 pints heavy whipping cream

powdered sugar to taste

hot chocolate mix (made with hot milk or water) to taste

grated Ghiradelli Chocolate


Use a fine grater or a food processor to grate chocolate.

Prepare hot chocolate mix (sweeter than you’d usually drink it)

hot chocolate

In a deep bowl mix 2 pts. heavy whipping cream with about 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar.
With an electric mixer, blend on ‘high’ or ‘whip’ until the mixture starts to thicken.  Do a taste test to see if the sweetness is to your liking. Add more if needed.
Continue blending until stiff peaks form.


Using a deep, clear sided bowl or baking dish, assemble.

1st. Put down a layer of lady fingers.sauce

2. Slowly spoon or pour liquid hot chocolate mix over the cookies until it’s absorbed the liquid (but not swimming)

3. {See note below for cream cheese variation} Spread a layer of whipped cream.

4. Repeat.

5. Top with grated chocolate.chocolate shavings


Almond /  ‘peppermint pattie’ variation

to the whipped cream & powdered sugar – add a few drops Almond extract

Peppermint Cream Cheese Filling

1 pkg. cream cheese – softened

powdered sugar – to taste

peppermint flavoring (food-grade Peppermint Oil) to taste

blend all together till smooth

carefully & gently spread over first layer of chocolate covered lady fingers

Additional Information:

Wikipedia – Tiramisu 

Persimmon Pudding

2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 cups sugar (or maple syrup)
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped nuts
2 cups fresh persimmon pulp
2/3 cup milk (or soy milk)
2 tsp. vanilla extract
zest from 1 lemon

persimmon pudding










Mix all dry ingredients. Add liquid ingredients and stir till smooth.

Place mixture into greased loaf pan.

Bake at 325° for about 50 minutes or until knife comes out clean.

Top with Coconut Milk Whipped Cream

One Bowl Devils-Food Cake – Grandma & Jeanette

1-3/4 cup sifted flourchocolate cake
1-1/3 cup sugar
2/3  cup cocoa powder
1-1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
3/4 tsp salt
2/3 cup spry
1 cup milk
1-1/2 tsp vanilla
2 eggs

Sift dry ingredients into mixing bowl. Drop in spry, add milk, vanilla and eggs and mix all until smooth.
Bake in 2 deep 8-inch spry-coated layer pans at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes.


Jeanette ( 3rd Daughter, child#5) : This recipe card was written in my grade-school handwriting, so I’ve had it for a long time. There seemed to be a lot of dessert-making when we were growing up; we had a lot of well-used stand-by recipes. Dad seemed to insist that there should be dessert after every dinner, PLUS, it seemed to be the assigned job of “the girls” to make desserts for “the boys” to bring back to college when they came home every two weeks.


Chocolate Cake – Grandma’s

2 cups flourpeggys 9th bd
2/3 cup cocoa
1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder


1 2/3 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup mayonnaise
1 1/3 cup water

mix all together

Bake at 325 degrees for 35 minutes




peggys birthday


lisa grandma grandpa


One Bowl Yellow Cake – Grandma’s

3 cups sifted flourgrandpa dan cheryl
2 cups, 2 tblsp. sugar
3 3/4 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 cup Spry (altrnatives Crisco / butter / lard or coconut oil…if you live in a climate where it stays solid)
1 1/4 cups milk, or more
1 1/4 tsp. vanilla
3 eggs, unbeaten

Sift flour, baking powder, sugar and salt into mixing bowl, drop in Spry, add milk and vanilla.  Beat 150 strokes, scrape bowl & spoon often through out mixing, add eggs, beat 250 strokes, add remaining milk, beat 50 strokes.  Don”t make batter too thick.

Betty’s side bar notes: DUMP EVERYTHING IN BOWL, MIX WITH ELECTRIC MIXER.  Bake 375 – 30 to 40 minutes.

More notes:  This is a world War II recipe – I use 2/3 cup powderd milk with approx 1 1/2 cup of water. And Don’t let bake too long or it will be dry. Take out as soon as toothpick comes out dry.