Recipes from State Fair winners

Here are the winning recipes from some of the national recipe contests at the State Fair:

Turtle-nut thumbprint cookies

1 cup butter or margarine

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup light corn syrup (Karo recommended)

2 eggs, separated

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 cups finely chopped pecans

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 (12-ounce) jar hot caramel ice cream topping

1 (16-ounce) container prepared fudge icing

- Beat butter, sugar and vanilla together in a large bowl with mixer at medium speed, until smooth. Beat in corn syrup and egg yolks. Stir in flour, 1 cup nuts and salt until well blended.

Cover and chill until dough is firm.

- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.

- Scoop dough into 1-inch balls. Place dough balls 2 inches apart on cookie sheet. With your finger, make a well into the center of each cookie.

- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.

- When cookies are removed from oven, spoon caramel into center of warm cookie and lightly sprinkle centers with the remaining nuts.

- Place prepared icing into a piping bag. Heat in microwave for a few seconds so that icing can be drizzled onto cooled cookies.

- From Helen Mavroftas of Columbia, first place, Karo Corn Syrup Kids Cookie Contest, best baked entry, S.C. State Fair

Nut and honey graham party squares

Makes 24 bars

2 1/2 cups Malt-O-Meal Honey Graham Squares (ground fine in a food processor)

1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts

3/4 cup flaked coconut

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1/2 cup old-fashioned quick oats

5 1/2 tablespoons melted margarine or butter

1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk

- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place the first 5 ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Stir to combine.

- Add melted butter and sweetened condensed milk.

Mix until well blended.

- Spread batter evenly in a greased 9- by 13-inch pan.

- Bake 22 to 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool in the pan on a wire rack 5 to 10 minutes. Cut into bars.

- From Tammy Michalec of Leesville, first place, Make it with Malt-O-Meal recipe contest, S.C. State Fair


Makes 10-12 skewers

1 (12-ounce) SPAM Classic

12 ounces plain bacon

1 (20-ounce) can pineapple tidbits

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 tablespoon honey

Medium-size barbecue skewers

- Heat oven to 400 degrees. Line cookie sheet (lip style) with aluminum foil.

- Place bacon slices on large cutting board. Sprinkle with brown sugar and then rub into bacon. Drizzle with honey. Cut bacon strips into thirds.

- Cube Spam to fit one piece into each bacon third. Add a pineapple tidbit to each portion.

- Wrap bacon around firmly and place onto skewer. Three pieces for each skewer works well.

- Place skewers on lined cookie sheet and cook for approximately 30 minutes, rotate and cook another 15 minutes, or until desired crispness.

- Can be served alone on skewers or used to top grits, mashed potatoes, rice or polenta.

- From Valerie Ingram of Columbia, first place, the Great American Spam Championship, S.C. State Fair

Thyme for a cure raspberry and cheese ribbons

1 package active dry yeast (Fleischmann's recommended)

3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup hot milk (120 degrees)

2 eggs

3/4 teaspoon lemon zest

1 teaspoon fresh thyme, finely chopped

Shortening to grease bowl

Raspberry cheese filling:

2/3 cup fresh raspberries

1 tablespoon sugar

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 teaspoon water

3 ounces cream cheese at room temperature

3 ounces fresh goat cheese at room temperature

1 egg yolk

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Powdered sugar

- Combine yeast and 1 1/2 cups flour in bowl of heavy-duty mixer.

- In medium mixing bowl, add melted butter, sugar and salt.

- Add warmed milk to the yeast mixture and stir until just combined. Add sugar and butter mixture, eggs, lemon zest and thyme. Beat on medium speed for 3 minutes.

- Add remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, at low speed to make a soft dough.

- Place in a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 4 hours to overnight.

- To make filling, combine first 4 filling ingredients in a small nonstick skillet and bring to a boil, stirring constantly.

- Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes or until very thick. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

- In a mixing bowl, combine last 4 filling ingredients. Add the cooled raspberry mixture and mix on medium speed until smooth.

- Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface and divide into 2 equal sections.

- Refrigerate portion two until ready to fill. Take portion one and roll into a 10- by 12-inch rectangle. Cut into 2-inch by 12-inch strips with a pastry wheel.

- Wet the edges of the pastry and place approximately 1 tablespoon of filling down the center of each strip. Pinch the edges of the dough around the filling to seal. Shape into a ribbon and place on parchment-lined or greased cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining dough.

- Let rise uncovered for 20 minutes. Bake in a preheated oven at 375 degrees for 13-15 minutes until puffy and brown.

- Cool on a rack and dust with powdered sugar. Serve warm or at room temperature.

- From Mary Thompson of Lexington, first-place, Fleischmann's Yeast "Bake for the Cure" baking contest, kneaded bread, S.C. State Fair

Let the sun shine in cake

10-12 servings


3 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup sugar

2 1/4-ounce envelopes rapid rise yeast (Fleischmann's recommended)

1 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup milk

1/4 cup water

1/2 cup butter or margarine

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon lemon zest

1 teaspoon lime zest

1 teaspoon orange zest

1/2 cup orange juice


2 ounces cream cheese (room temperature)

1/2 cup crushed pineapple, drained

1 cup powdered sugar


1 (16-ounce) container white cake frosting

- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine 1 cup flour, sugar, undissolved yeast and salt.

- In a medium bowl, heat milk, water and butter until warm in the microwave. Gradually add to flour mixture.

- Beat 2 minutes on medium speed of electric mixer, scraping bowl occasionally. Add eggs and 1 cup flour. Beat 2 minutes at high speed.

- Stir in lemon, lime and orange zest and remaining flour to make a soft batter. Transfer batter from bowl to greased 9-inch bundt pan. Cover; let rise slightly in a warm, draft-free place, about 1 hour.

- Bake for 35-40 minutes in the preheated oven or until done. Cool in pan for 10 minutes.

- Take cake out of pan and while still warm, drizzle orange juice evenly over cake. Cool completely.

- In a medium bowl mix together filling ingredients, cream cheese, pineapple, and powdered sugar.

- Slice cake in half making two layers. Spread filling over the bottom cake layer. Place top of cake back on top. Decorate as desired.

- From Tina Finders of Lexington, first place, Fleischmann's Yeast "Bake for the Cure" baking contest, no kneading bread, S.C. State Fair

Believe it or not Butterfinger bars

Makes 24-36 bars

6 cups corn flakes (crushed fine)

1 cup sugar

1 cup Karo Lite Syrup

2 cups creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup Nestle butterscotch chips

1 package (12 ounces) milk chocolate chips

- Line the bottom of a 9- by 13-inch pan with foil extending 2 inches over each end.

- Place corn flakes in a zip-lock bag. With your hands or rolling pin, crush until fine and set aside.

- In a 4-quart sauce pan, stir the sugar, Karo syrup, peanut butter and butterscotch chips on medium heat. Allow mixture to get hot. Do not boil.

- Remove from heat and add crushed corn flakes. Mix until all is combined.

- Pour into prepared pan and press with the back of a spoon, spreading evenly being sure to get into the corners.

- While the mixture is still warm, pour the chocolate chips evenly over the top. Set aside and allow the chocolate chips to melt completely. This takes about 10 minutes. n With the back of a spoon, spread the melted chocolate covering the peanut butter mixture. Place in the refrigerator to harden 30 to 60 minutes.

- Lift mixture out of pan using the extended foil. Cut into desired bars.

- From Tammy Michalec of Leesville, first place, Karo Corn Syrup Kids Cookie Contest no-bake winner, S.C. State Fair

Go green veggie pizza

8 servings

2 packages refrigerated crescent rolls

1 package cream cheese (softened)

1 cup fat-free sour cream

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1 package Hidden Valley Ranch original dressing mix

1/2 red bell pepper, chopped

1/2 green bell pepper, chopped

1 cup fresh broccoli, chopped

1 cup fresh cauliflower, chopped

1 cup carrot, grated

1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated

- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pat crescent roll dough onto baking sheet and let stand for 5 minutes.

- Prick holes in dough with a fork and then bake for 10 minutes.

- Combine sour cream, cream cheese, mayonnaise and Hidden Valley Ranch original dressing mix. Mix until well blended and then set aside.

- Once dough is golden brown, remove and let cool. Once cooled, spread Hidden Valley Ranch mix on dough.

- Sprinkle with all the fresh vegetables and top with cheddar cheese.

- Cut into squares and serve.

- From Heather Doggett of Irmo, first place, Hidden Valley Dressing "Fresh Taste for the Family" recipe contest, State Fair