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Give your cooking a pop

By on February 7, 2008

photo by worak
coke bottle
A reader once asked for a pot-roast recipe on my forums and got many recipes that included cola. They claimed it tenderized the meat. This didn’t sound appealing to me, so I forgot about it. Through the years, I noticed more people mentioning cakes, pies and meat recipes that included pop as the secret ingredient. I still wasn’t convinced.

It wasn’t until I read “Fix-It and Forget-It 5-Ingredient Favorites” by Phyllis Pellman Good (Good Books, 2007) that I finally decided to give readers’ tried-and-true soda-pop recipes a try. I could kick myself for not trying these recipes sooner. Much like cooking with beer or wine, the flavor cooked isn’t the same as when you drink it. Cakes turn out super-moist, and meats are tender and juicy.

I’ve heard pizza dough can be made with ginger ale, too. If you’ve tried this and have a recipe, let me know.

Here are some soda-pop recipes sent by readers.

Lemon-Lime Soda-Pop Cake

3 sticks butter, softened
3 cups sugar
5 eggs
3 cups flour
2 tablespoons lemon extract
3/4 cup lemon-lime soda

1-1/3 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice

Preheat oven to 325 F. Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Gradually add eggs, one at a time. Add flour, lemon extract and lemon-lime soda. Pour into well-greased Bundt pan. Bake at 325 F for 1 hour, 15 minutes.
Mix together powdered sugar and lemon juice to make glaze and drizzle on top of cake once cooled.
Optional: Dust with powdered sugar instead of glaze.
— submitted by Maryann, Kentucky

7 Up Biscuits

4 cups Bisquick baking mix
1 cup sour cream
6 ounces 7 Up

Preheat oven to 400 F. Place baking mix in a mixing bowl, and cut in sour cream until mix is crumbly. Add 7 Up and combine by hand. Don’t overhandle. Roll onto floured surface to about 1/2-inch thickness. Drop or cut with biscuit cutter and place on greased baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Makes 15.
— submitted by Holly, New York

Honey Ginger-Ale Ham

6 pounds semi-boneless ham
1 (12 ounce) can ginger ale
1 cup water
1/4 cup molasses
several whole cloves
2 tablespoons honey mustard
3/4 cup brown sugar

Pour ginger ale, water and molasses over ham. Cover with foil and bake in preheated 350 F oven for 90 minutes. Add more water if liquid cooks off. Once ham is cooked, dot ham with whole cloves. Mix honey mustard and brown sugar to form a paste. Spread it on and bake until the glaze melts.
— submitted by Annie H., Illinois

Cola Pork Roast

1 Boston butt pork
1 (12 ounce) can cola
1 can cream-of-mushroom soup
1 package onion soup mix

Place roast in a slow cooker. Mix cola, mushroom soup and onion soup mix. Pour over pork roast. Cook on low for 7 hours.
— submitted by Amy, Ohio

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