March 2018
Homeplace & Community

The Co-op Pantry



Frances Dahlke

This month, I am so pleased to feature a wonderful lady who it has been my privilege to know for almost 30 years, Ms. Frances Dahlke. When I began working at AFC, Ms. Frances was the only female Quality Co-op manager and absolutely one of the best managers, as well. If I have counted correctly, this will be 57 years that she has worked for a Quality Co-op.

Ms. Frances has worked several jobs and at several Co-ops. In 1955, she was first hired part time at Farmers Exchange in Cullman and was quickly hired full time. In 1961, she became a bookkeeper at Walker Farmers Co-op, moved up to assistant manager and, in 1974, she became the manager.

In 1978, she was named Manager of the Year!

Ms. Frances has also managed Cullman Farmers Co-op and Marshall Farmers Co-op in Arab.

In 1996, she retired, but decided she was bored and needed to do something to fill her time. She has traveled here in the states as well as in Europe. However, she missed her Co-op family and, to this day, still works part time at the Cullman store.

As for her personal story, Ms. Francis shared, "I was raised in Cullman County and was one of six children.

"When we got up in the morning, our mother would already have dinner cooking as we went to the field.

"After dinner, we three girls would wash the dishes and clean up the kitchen. Then it was time to go back to the field.

"I should have paid more attention to her cooking, but she could do it faster and didn’t really have the time.

"I am sharing some of my favorite recipes. I have always liked to make cakes (although I don’t do it now). When I was manager of Walker Farmers Co-op in Jasper, I would bake at least a dozen cakes, mostly pound cakes because they were easier to serve, for the Annual Membership Meeting and Customer Appreciation Day.

"I have truly been blessed because I still work part-time at Cullman Farmers Co-op."


For April, we will be featuring broccoli, carrots, crawfish and garlic, and ones for grilled cheese.

May’s recipes will feature asparagus, barbecue, beef, egg, hummus, salsa, shrimp, strawberries and tuna, ones for salads and to make hummus or salsa.

We are always interested in anyone who would be willing to be interviewed and share some of her … or his … favorite recipes with us. Contact us if you are interested.

We would love to hear from you … for recipes or to be our feature cook. Get those recipes rolling in!

~ Editor


1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1 prepared graham cracker crust pie shell
1 carton whipped topping

In a bowl, combine milk and lemon juice. Mix well. Pour into pie shell. Spread whipped topping on top. Refrigerate for at least one hour. It will freeze well.



1 large box strawberry jello
1 carton cottage cheese
1 large container whipped topping
1 large can crushed pineapple, drained

In a large bowl, mix all together. Chill.



1 cup oleo
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 cup sour cream
½ teaspoon vanilla
2 cups plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt

½ cup finely chopped pecans
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons brown sugar

In a bowl, cream oleo, sugar and eggs. Add sour cream and dry ingredients. Mix well.

In another bowl, mix pecans, cinnamon and sugar.

Into greased and floured tube pan, spoon ½ of batter. Sprinkle with ½ of topping. Add rest of batter. Sprinkle with rest of topping. Bake at 350° for 55-60 minutes. Cool completely before taking up.



2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
¼ cup finely chopped bell pepper
2 Tablespoons seasoning salt
1/3 cup finely chopped onion
l (8-ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
½ cup chopped pecans, extra for coating

In a bowl, mix all ingredients except extra pecans together. Roll into a ball. On parchment or wax paper, spread extra pecans. Roll ball in pecans. Chill.

Note: I usually make 2 balls.



3 cups sweet potatoes, cooked and mashed
3 eggs, well beaten
½ teaspoon salt
½ stick butter
½ cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup ground pecans
1 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup flour
½ stick butter

In a bowl, place first six ingredients. Mix well. Pour into a greased pan.

In another bowl, place all topping ingredients. Mix together. It will be crumbly. Pour on potato mixture. Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes.



½ cup butter
1½ cups sugar
½ cup buttermilk
3 eggs, beaten
3 Tablespoons flour
1 Tablespoon vanilla
1 9" unbaked pie shell

In a bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add remaining ingredients except pie shell. Mix well. Pour into pie shell. Bake at 350° for 30-45 minutes.



2 (3-ounce) boxes pineapple flavored gelatin
½ envelope unflavored gelatin
1 (20-ounce) can pineapple, drained and reserve juice
1 (9-ounce) container whipped topping
2 cups buttermilk

In a saucepan, dissolve gelatins in pineapple juice. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat and cool. Stir well. In a large mixing bowl, combine whipped topping and buttermilk. In a blender, puree pineapple. Add to buttermilk mixture. Stir well. Add gelatin mixture. Mix thoroughly. Pour into oiled mold and chill.




1 bag thin pretzels
1 cup + 3 Tablespoons sugar, divided
1 stick butter, softened
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 (8-ounce) container whipped topping
1 (6-ounce) package strawberry jello
2 cups boiling water
½ cup cool water
2 (10-ounce) package frozen, sliced strawberries

With rolling pin, crush pretzels while still in bag. Open bag and measure out 2 cups. In a bowl, combine pretzels, 3 tablespoons sugar and butter. Pat into a 13x9 pyrex dish. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes.

In a bowl, mix cream cheese and remaining sugar. Fold in whipped topping. Gently pour on cooled crust.

In a bowl, dissolve jello in boiling water. Add cool water. Add strawberries. Mix together. When partially congealed, spoon gently over cream cheese layer. Chill. Cut into squares to serve.



2 (10-ounce) packages frozen broccoli
2 cups cooked chicken
1 cup mayonnaise
½ teaspoon curry powder
2 cans cream of chicken soup
1 teaspoon lemon juice
½ cup grated cheese
½ cup buttered breadcrumbs

In a baking pan, place broccoli. Heat until crisp and tender. Drain. Place chicken on broccoli.

In a bowl, combine remaining ingredients except cheese and breadcrumbs. Spread over chicken. In a bowl, combine cheese and breadcrumbs. Spread on top. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes.



1 box lemon cake mix with pudding
1 small box lime jello
1½ cups oil
5 eggs
½ cup fresh orange juice
4 Tablespoons powdered sugar
½ cup key lime juice
1 box confectioner sugar
1 (8-ounce) container cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 stick butter

In a large bowl, add cake mix, jello, oil, eggs and orange juice. Mix well. Into 3 greased cake pans, evenly divide cake batter. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes.

In a bowl, mix powdered sugar and lime juice. Glaze cake while warm.

In a bowl, cream confectioner sugar, cream cheese, vanilla and butter.

On a plate, place a cake. Spread frosting on top and sides. Place another cake on top and frost. Place last cake on top and frost.



1 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
2 cups sugar
2½ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 cups apples, peeled and chopped
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup butterscotch morsels

In a bowl, beat together oil, eggs and sugar. Sift together next five ingredients alternately with apple to egg mixture. Mix well. Stir in pecans and half of morsels. In a greased 9x13 baking pan, spread batter. Sprinkle with remaining morsels. Bake at 350° for l hour.



1 box butter flavor cake mix, with need ingredients
Sour Cream Frosting
2 cups sugar
l (8-ounce) container sour cream
1 package frozen coconut, thawed
1 (8-ounce) container whipped topping

Prepare cake as directed for 2 layers. After each has cooled, split both make 4 layers.

In a bowl, blend all frosting ingredients reserving some coconut for coating. Chill.

In place, place a cake layer. Spread with frosting. Repeat for each layer. Add extra coconut to outside. Place in airtight container. Refrigerate 3 days before serving.

March Healthy Recipe


Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 0 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste, divided
9 ounces fresh, wild-caught crabmeat, fully cooked (or 1 can fully cooked crabmeat)
½ tomato, diced
½ orange or yellow bell pepper, diced
1½ Tablespoons chives, chopped and divided
2 avocados
¼ cup fresh lemon juice, squeezed from 1 lemon

In a mixing bowl, whisk together mustard and vinegar. Slowly whisk in olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

To another bowl, add cooked crabmeat, tomato, bell pepper and 1 tablespoon chives. Stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper.

Cut each avocado in half, place in a shallow pan and immediately pour lemon juice over each to keep them from turning brown. Using a small spoon, scoop out pit. Scoop out about 1/3 of fruit from each half and save.

Add scooped-out avocado to crabmeat mixture. Stir to combine.

Stuff each avocado half with crabmeat salad.

Sprinkle remaining chives over each half. Serve.

Note: As many of you know, I tend to read cookbooks for fun, exchange recipes and stalk cyberspace recipe sites – all in search of new recipes to try. Lately, I have been in an avocado mood. When I found this recipe, it combined one of our featured ingredients, crabmeat, plus AVOCADOS – I had to try it!! Loved it! Not only does it taste great but it is simple to make and involves no cooking! Enjoy!!


Mary Delph is an associate editor with AFC Cooperative Farming News. You may email her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Jena Klein is AFC’s Wellness Program Coordinator. You may email her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..