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Traveling has been one of Ellen Siemens’ favorite things to do with her husband. They’ve been to Hawaii several times and for their 50th anniversary, they enjoyed an Alaskan tour. Ellen and Frank Siemens have celebrated 57 years of married life together. For their 55th anniversary, they enjoyed a train ride out west.
Ellen and Frank live on a farm outside of Renwick. Ellen is a homemaker who is semi-retired and working part time at Boone Valley Implement in Renwick. Frank is a farmer and is fortunate to have a great hired man that helps him. Ellen grew up in Brookville, IN, and graduated from Whitewater High School in Indiana, and then attended Ozark Christian College in Joplin, MO. Frank grew up in Goldfield, graduating from Boone Valley High School and then did his tour of duty in the United States Army. They met while at Ozark Christian. They were married in 1957.
They have three children, four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. Their children are Tricia (Rod) Roberts, Ron (Monica) Siemens and Karen (Joe) Provance. Tricia is Foundation Director at St. Anthony Hospital in Carroll.
Rod is Director with the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals for the State of Iowa. They have two children: Brett is a corporation lawyer in Chicago, IL. Lindsey is a high school teacher in Malvern. Lindsey and her husband have two sons, Jack who is 8, and Ryan who is 7.
Ellen and Frank have Ron close by, as he is the owner and manager of Boone Valley Implement and Wright County Trucks in Renwick and Goldfield. Monica is a Physician Assistant at Gabrilson Clinic in Clear Lake. They have several dogs as their family.
Karen is an accountant for Hy-Vee Food Stores in Blue Springs, MO. Joe is a driver for Schneider Trucking in Kansas City, MO. They have two sons, Jeremy is a senior at William Jewell College in Liberty, MO, and Brad is a freshman at Community College in Blue Springs, MO.
Ellen and Frank attend Park Church of Christ in Goldfield. Ellen enjoys reading, some quilting and lots of traveling. She has made four quilts for her grandchildren. She told me that she keeps them until they get married. Frank enjoys Western art, farming and travel. They list their favorite meal to be steak, cheesy hash browns and a salad. She shares some of her family’s favorite foods with us.

Ham Balls
3 pounds ham and pork, ground
3 eggs
1 cup milk
3 cups crushed Wheaties
1-1/2 teaspoons smoke flavoring
Mix all together. Shape into balls and line them up in your pan. Bake at 350 degrees for one-half hour.
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 cup catsup
Mix all together and pour over the balls. Bake another 15 to 20 minutes.

Oatmeal Bread
2 cups boiling water
1 cup quick oatmeal
1 tablespoon butter
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon white sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
2 packages dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water
5 cups unsifted flour
Mix oatmeal and 2 cups boiling water. Add butter, sugars and salt. Let oatmeal set for 3 to 4 minutes. Soften the dry yeast in the 1/2 cup of warm water. Add to oatmeal mixture, which should be lukewarm by now.
Add flour gradually and knead 3 to 4 minutes. Let rise until double in bulk. Punch down and put into 2 greased loaf pans. Let rise.
Bake in a 350-degree oven for 30 minutes. Also, you can make 2 dozen cloverleaf rolls from this recipe. Bake these in a 350-degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes. The top of the loaves of bread will almost look burned when baked.

Crockpot Potatoes
Ellen got this recipe from a friend. Recipe makes 8 cups or about 12 servings.
5 pounds potatoes, cooked and
6 ounces cream cheese
1 cup sour cream
Mix and put in refrigerator. Cook in crockpot approximately 3 hours. Stir and add 3 tablespoons butter or oleo.

Zucchini Chocolate Cake
She also received this recipe from a friend.
1/2 cup oleo
1/2 cup oil
1-3/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup sour milk
2-1/2 cups flour
4 tablespoons cocoa
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cloves
2 cups zucchini, finely chopped
1/4 cup chocolate chips
Cream oleo, oil, sugar, eggs, vanilla and sour milk. Beat well. Stir in dry ingredients and beat well. Stir in zucchini. Put batter into a greased and floured 9 by 13 inch pan. Sprinkle chocolate chips on top. Bake in a 325-degree oven for 40 to 45 minutes or until done. This cake needs no frosting.

Cranberry Candy
Melt 1 can of cranberry jelly. Break up with a spoon.
Add 3 boxes of raspberry Jell-O gelatin.
Heat just to boiling. Let set 20 minutes. Pour into a buttered 9 inch square pan. Let set for 24 hours. Cut and roll in granulated sugar. This is kind of like gummy bears, etc.

Danish Puff Pastry
1 cup flour
1/2 cup butter or oleo
2 tablespoons water
Cut butter into flour. Sprinkle and mix in water. Divide into 2 strips, 12 by 3 inches each, on an ungreased cookie sheet. Set aside while preparing the following:
1/2 cup butter
1 cup water
1 teaspoon almond flavoring
1 cup sifted flour
3 eggs
Bring butter and water to rolling boil. Add almond flavoring. Beat in, by hand, flour and then one egg at a time until smooth and thick. Spread evenly over strips. Bake in a 350-degree oven for one hour. For frosting, mix 1-1/2 cups powdered sugar, 1/4 cup oleo and 1/4 teaspoon almond extract. Sprinkle with nuts. At Christmas time, you may decorate with candy cherries.

Fruit Cobbler
She got this recipe from her sister in 1985.
1 stick margarine
1 cup sugar
1 cup flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
1 can fruit, NOT drained
Melt margarine in a 7x12 inch casserole pan. Beat together sugar, flour, baking powder, salt and milk. Pour this over the melted margarine, but do not stir. Pour the fruit and juice over batter. Do not stir. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 30 to 40 minutes or until done. This cobbler serves 6 to 8 people.

Apple Butter
16 cups applesauce
8 cups sugar
1 cup vinegar
4 teaspoons cinnamon
nutmeg and cloves
Cook in the oven until desired color and thickness. Ellen says she has made this in a crock pot, cooking on low for 6 to 8 hours.

Crockpot Potato Soup
This recipe is also from her sister.
8 to 10 potatoes, peeled and cut
into bite size pieces
2 onions, chopped
1 carrot, sliced
4 chicken bouillon cubes
1 tablespoon parsley
4 to 5 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
pepper to taste
1/3 cup butter
13 ounce can evaporated milk
Put all ingredients except milk into crockpot. Cover and cook 10 to 12 hours on low (4 to 5 hours if on high). Stir in evaporated milk during the last hour of cooking. If desired, you can mash the potatoes before serving.

If you are reading this, then you probably enjoy new recipes. If you would like to share some of your recipes with the community YOU could be Cook of the Week. Please contact me, Sally Cuthbertson, if you would like to be in this column some week. I can be reached by phone at 515-373-6346 or email me at sacuthbe@msn.com.
I will be happy to email or send you my short questionnaire and set up a time to come and visit you at your convenience. I’m always looking for NEW Cook’s of the Week. Also, if you are new in town, this is a good way to introduce yourself to the Humboldt community and surrounding communities. I look forward to visiting with you.
The COOK OF THE WEEK 3rd Edition Cookbook is available. Cost per copy is $10.70, plus $4.80 shipping/handling. Order a copy today by sending a check or money order, along with name and shipping address, to: Humboldt Independent, 512 Sumner Ave., Humboldt, IA 50548.