By Don Bingham
Most of us have cookbook collections and the newest publication for your recipe enjoyment is the Junior Auxiliary of Conway’s cookbook “Simply Irresistible…Too” which celebrates 50 years of food, service and local history.
Junior Auxiliary of Conway is a chapter of a national nonprofit organization of women and this cookbook highlights their service projects over the 50-year span, with stories, historical information, photos and wonderful recipes that range from quick and easy to fancy and fabulous.
The purpose of the Junior Auxiliary is to foster interest among its members in the social, economic, educational, civic and cultural conditions around them; to encourage members to render service in their communities; and to cooperate with civic groups performing similar services.
The timeless theme of “Care Today – Character Tomorrow” has been around a long time, since 1941 actually, with the first Junior Auxiliary meeting held in Conway on Jan. 8, 1959, at the Faulkner County Library. Mrs. Howard Groth was president and Mrs. A.E. Burdick was vice president.
There are many examples in Conway of the group’s service to others over the years – including support of the Faulkner County Day School, Help for Abuse Victims in Emergency Need (HAVEN) and Independent Living Services, and “Safety Town” for incoming kindergarten students. “Deck the Doors” is one of the group’s annual events aimed at raising funds to support the group’s programs.
The Conway chapter has 50 members and meets monthly.
The recipes in the cookbook are fun and practical. Submitted by life, associate and active members, the recipes are all taste-tested.
Among the stars of the book are the Butter Meltaways with Pink Frosting (Susie Walker) and the Lemon Blossoms (Chris Jennings). Some recipes have also been contributed by old Downtown Conway establishments.
Members of the cookbook committee included Chris Jennings, Beth Ann Shunkey, co-chairmen; Christi Baker, Leslie Eddy, Tanya Ford, Stacy Fulmer, Vicki Hawk, Mandie Hoelscher, Ginny Hogue, Casey Griffith, Christy King, Cristal Lambert, Julie LaRue, Jennifer Lindsey, Ashley Mickel, Monica Pinkett, Amanda Potts, Missy Thoelke and Pat Wilson.
“Simply Irresistible…Too” is available at Conway’s Classic Touch, Rose Cottage and the Kitchen Store, and from any JA member. For more information on this cookbook, please go to www.jaconway.org.
Apple and Squash Soup
1 large butternut squash, peeled and cubed
3 Granny Smith apples, peeled and chopped
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
¼ teaspoon chopped rosemary
¼ teaspoon dried marjoram
2 (32 oz.) cartons chicken broth
3 cups water
Salt and pepper to taste
2 slices white bread
1/3 cup heavy cream
Garnish with chopped parsley
Combine squash, apples, onions, rosemary, marjoram, broth, water, salt, pepper and bread in a stockpot. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 45 minutes. When cool, puree soup in batches. Return to pot. Bring to boil. Stir in heavy cream. Garnish with parsley. Serves 12-14.
Rye Bread Pizza
1 pound mild bulk sausage
1 pound Velveeta, cubed
½ teaspoon garlic salt
½ teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 loaf party rye bread
Brown sausage in a skillet. Drain drippings. Add Velveeta, garlic salt, oregano, Worcestershire sauce and ketchup. Stir until cheese melts. Spread hot mixture over rye bread. Bake at 450 degrees for 8-10 minutes.
Note: Great to place in freezer bags and freeze. Pull out and heat when needed.