KCS Cooks Share
Thanksgiving RecipesPosted by Josh Flory on 11/19/2018
Cherrie Dirl, left, and Karen Householder prepare Green Bean Bundles at the Powell High School kitchen on Nov. 14, 2018.
Nervous about cooking Thanksgiving dinner for a house full of people? Knox County Schools is here to help.
The cooks, cafeteria workers and nutritionists of KCS serve more than 50,000 meals every school day, but this week Hall Pass asked them to share some go-to dishes for Thanksgiving dinner at home. They provided recipes for desserts, collard greens and a green bean dish that's enhanced with bacon, butter and brown sugar.
Green Bean Bundles / Karen Householder and Cherrie Dirl, Powell High School
1 pack of frozen whole green beans
1 stick of butter
1 cup of brown sugar -- will not use it all
1 pound of bacon -- cut each piece in half
Take 3-4 green beans and wrap a half piece of bacon around the middle of the bundle. Lay on a cookie sheet lined with parchment.
Keep repeating this process until all beans are gone or you run out of bacon.
Cut butter into small cubes, lay to side.
Take a pinch of brown sugar and top each bundle then lay a butter cube on top of that.
Bake at 350 degrees, usually 10-12 minutes or until bacon is golden.
Karen Householder, manager of the Powell High School cafeteria, began making Green Bean Bundles a decade ago, after George-Anna Goodin -- now the food service manager at A.L. Lotts Elementary -- brought them to a Christmas party.
"I said, 'I've got to have (the recipe) for my grandkids,'" Householder recalled.
On a recent morning, Householder and Powell High School cook Cherrie Dirl demonstrated the recipe. They said that every oven is different, so be prepared to adjust the cooking time depending on how dark you like the bacon and glaze. Dirl said kids are drawn to the butter and sugar in the Bundles, and are especially likely to eat them when they get to help with the cooking process.
Chess Pie / Deborah Cantonwine, Inskip Elementary School
1 Tsp. All Purpose Flour
1 Tsp. Yellow Corn Meal
5 Beaten Eggs
1 Tsp. Vanilla
½ Cup butter
2 Cups Sugar
1 Cup Milk
2 Tsp Lemon Juice
1 Unbaked Pie Shell
Cream Butter and Sugar
Beat in flour and corn meal, then add eggs, milk, vanilla and lemon juice. Beat well.
Pour into unbaked pie shell. Bake in oven, 350 degrees for 55-60 minutes or until knife comes out clean.
Deborah Cantonwine, the cafeteria manager at Inskip Elementary School, got this chess pie recipe from her grandmother, who made it for a family reunion 20 years ago. Cantonwine said the secret is to use yellow corn meal, because it helps the pie to brown on top.
This year, she'll be making the pie for a special Thanksgiving dinner with her son, who was on a military deployment last year. Even better, this year's holiday will include a new addition: Cantonwine's 7-month-old grandson.
Deborah Cantonwine is the cafeteria manager at Inskip Elementary School.
Southern Cooked Collard Greens / Sharon Meady, School Area Supervisor, KCS Nutrition
6 slices of bacon
2 tsp garlic
3 lbs collard greens
1/3 cup vinegar
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
Cook bacon until crispy, then add all the ingredients in a pot. Slowly cook for 2 hours or until collard greens are tender.
For Sharon Meady, collard greens bring back memories from her childhood. "We had probably an acre or two of land, and every year my parents would plant a garden," she said. "And greens is one of the things they would plant."
The key ingredient in this recipe? Pepper, for an extra kick: "I love hot and spicy."
Sharon Meady, pictured in the kitchen at Northwest Middle School, is School Area Supervisor for KCS Nutrition.
Pumpkin pie / Brett Foster, Executive Director, KCS Nutrition
¾ c brown sugar
1 tbsp flour
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ginger
1 tbsp melted butter
1 beaten egg
1 ½ c pumpkin
1 ½ c evaporated milk
1 unbaked pie shell
Whisk together brown sugar, flour, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, and ginger until well combined. In separate bowl, whisk together melted butter, beaten egg, pumpkin, and evaporated milk until well combined. Pour wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until fully combined. Pour into the pie crust. Bake in preheated 425 degree oven for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350 degrees; bake for 40 to 50 minutes until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours.
Brett Foster, who leads School Nutrition for KCS, said this recipe was originally from her paternal grandmother. When her paternal grandparents passed away, her maternal grandmother, Annie Everett, moved into their old house and found the recipe in a cookbook. She then made some modifications, so Foster said that "it's kind of a hybrid of the two of their recipes."
In fact, school nutrition is something of a family tradition. Foster said Everett, who she calls "Mammaw", was herself a school cafeteria worker.
Brett Foster, right, is pictured with her Mammaw, Annie Everett, second from right, and other family members.