BWA History - Told Through Recipes

The Bryan Women's Auxiliary was founded by First Lady Mrs. Alice Mercer in 1957.  Her husband, Dr. Ted Mercer, was Bryan's president from 1956-1986.  Since its beginning, BWA ladies have often used their cooking and baking talents to honor the Lord and to raise funds that provide for campus needs. This page shares a small piece of the first 30 years of BWA's history by highlighting one item from three decades—1960s, 1970s, and 1980s—and providing sample recipes associated with each. Maybe you'll find a "new" recipe you will want to try!

TasteFest Recipe Fair – August 1964

The BWA sponsored the TasteFest Recipe Fair in August 1964.  Approximately 70 women brought samples of their food specialties for viewing and tasting.  Recipe cards were placed alongside each dish at the fair.  In addition, nearly 20 recipes were featured in two stories about the fair that were published in the August 27 and September 17, 1964, editions of the Chattanooga News-Free Press.  Monies donated during this unique fund-raising event went toward a BWA project to furnish the lounges in the then-recently completed Long and Huston residence halls.

Vanilla Wafer Cake by Gladys Porter

1 cup butter or margarine
2 cups sugar
6 whole eggs
1 box (12 oz.) vanilla wafers
½ cup milk
1 pkg. coconut (7 oz.)
1 cup chopped pecans
Cream butter and add sugar.  Beat until smooth.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Add crushed vanilla wafers alternately with milk.  Add pecans and coconut.  Pour into a greased and floured tube pan.
Bake at 275° for 1½ hours.

Praline Cake Squares by Mrs. Raymond Wallace

1 pkg. yellow cake mix
½ cup butter or margarine
1 pkg. brown sugar
1½ cups chopped pecans (also coconut, if desired)
2 T. flour
2 eggs, beaten
1 t. vanilla
Prepare cake mix as directed.  Pour batter into greased and floured 9x13 pan.  Bake at 350° for 20 minutes.  Remove from oven and leave in pan to cool.
In large skillet melt butter; add sugar, flour, and eggs.  Cook 3 minutes, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat; add vanilla, nuts, and coconut.  Spread evenly over surface of cooled cake and return to oven and bake 400° for 8 minutes.  Cut in squares when cool.

Chicken Cashew by Nell Gregg

1 chopped onion (large)
2 T. butter
1/3 cup chicken broth
Black pepper (fresh ground)
1 can chow mein noodles
1 cup diced celery
1 can mushroom soup
1 T. soy sauce
2 cups diced chicken (cooked)
½ cup cashew nuts
Sauté onion and celery in butter until clear (not brown).  Add mushroom soup, broth, and season with soy sauce and pepper.  Add chicken and simmer few minutes.  Pour into quart casserole; add noodles and nuts. 
Bake in 350° oven for 20 minutes, or until bubbly.  Serves 4-6
Can be made day before and refrigerated.  Adding noodles and nuts just before putting in oven to heat will assure proper flavor. 

Chinese Cashew Crunch by Clarice Eschenbrenner

Mix together:
1 can (rinsed) tuna [white albacore tuna]
1 can cream of chicken or cream of mushroom soup
2 cups chopped celery (about 5 stalks)
¾ cup chopped cashew nuts
¼ cup milk
Put in greased casserole.
Top with one can chow mein noodles
Bake at 325° for 20 to 30 minutes or until it bubbles.

Cinnamon Candy Salad by Pearl Wallace

½ cup red cinnamon candies
3½ cups water
2 pkgs. Cherry jello
1½ cups chopped apples
1 cup chopped nuts
1 cup celery
Place candies and water in saucepan and bring to boil.  Remove from heat and stir until candies are dissolved.  Pour over gelatin in a bowl and stir until gelatin is thoroughly dissolved; chill until partly thickened.  Fold in remaining ingredients.  Turn into 12 individual heart-shaped molds or one large mold; chill until firm.

Pound Cake with Lemon Glaze by Granny Russell

1 pkg. Duncan Hines Lemon Supreme cake mix
½ cup sugar
¾ cup Crisco oil
1 cup apricot nectar
4 eggs
Mix ingredients and add 4 eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Pour into greased tube pan and bake at 325° for 1 hour.
Topping:  After taking cake out of oven, let set for 1 minute and while cake is still hot, turn it out of pan and ice with following juicy mixture:
Sift 2 cups of confectioner’s sugar into the juice of 2 lemons and stir. 

Keeping CHRIST in CHRISTmas - December 1975

The December 1975 (second edition) publication entitled, Keeping CHRIST in CHRISTmas is the source for these recipes:

Peanut Brittle by Zelpha Russell

2 cups raw peanuts (small red-skins are best)
1 cup sugar
3 T. water
1 tsp. soda
½ cup Blue label Karo
Dash salt
Mix all ingredients with exception of soda and cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly until syrup begins to thicken and looks dark.  The peanuts would begin popping which means they have been roasted by the hot syrup.  This is a split second operation.  Over-cooked or under-cooked does not make good candy.
Remove from heat and quickly stir in the soda.  Spread immediately on buttered cookie sheet.  When cool, break into pieces and store in air-tight container.  (Tupperware is excellent for peanut brittle.)
WARNING: Do not make peanut brittle when weather is damp or when humidity is high even on a clear day.  High moisture content causes candy to be tough rather than brittle.

Chocodiles by Esther Cammenga

1 cup butter (no substitute)
¼ tsp. salt
1/3 cup crunchy peanut butter
3 cups flour (unsifted)
1 ¼ cup brown sugar
Beat on low speed then add:
2 beaten egg yolks
1 tsp. vanilla
Press into 15x10 inch pan.  Bake 30 minutes at 350° until light brown.  Cool slightly and frost with:
1 cup chocolate chips
2 cups chopped pecans
½ cup crunchy peanut butter
Melt the last three ingredients together.

Cranberry Nut Bread by Alice Mercer

2 cups flour
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
2 cups cranberries cut in half
½ cup chopped nuts
2 T. salad oil
1 cup sugar
Juice and grated rind of 1 orange
1 egg + enough water to make ¾ cup
Sift together the dry ingredients.  Add the orange juice and rind, oil, egg and water.  Stir until the mixture is damp.  Fold in ½ cup chopped nuts and cranberries.  Spoon the batter into a 9x5x3 inch loaf  pan or 2 smaller tea loaf pans.  Be sure to grease the pans first; and when you put the batter in, make the sides and corners higher than the middle.  Bake at 350° for 50-60 minutes.  Store overnight for easier slicing.

Christmas Apple Cake by Violet Cather

1¼ cup cooking oil
2 cups sugar
3 large eggs
3 cups diced apples
3 cups flour sifted with 1 tsp. salt and 1 tsp. soda
1 cup nuts (walnuts or pecans)
1 tsp. vanilla
Mix in order given and pour into greased baking dish or pan.  Bake at 325° for one hour.  Allos cake to remain in pan and cover while warm with glaze.
For glaze:
½ cup brown sugar
½ stick margarine
1/8 c. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
Combine and cook for 2½ minutes, stirring constantly.  Spoon over cake while both are warm.  Garnish top with red (or red & green) maraschino cherry halves.  Cake will stay moist for days.

Mid-Holiday Casserole by Bernyce Clementson

1½ cup celery, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
¼ cup onion, chopped
1½ cup brother or bouillon
3 cups diced turkey
1 8-oz pkg. macaroni cooked and drained
1 small can mushrooms
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup milk
2 oz. can pimento, drained
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
½ cup cracker crumbs
2 T. butter
Simmer celery, green pepper, and onion in the broth until tender.  Combine all ingredients except crumbs and butter.  Pour into greased 3-quart casserole.  Top with crumbs and dots of butter; sprinkle paprika over top.  Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until golden brown.  Serves 12.

Jubilee Salad Fair Luncheon & Handicraft Exhibit - October 1980

These recipes are copied from a BWA publication entitled Salad Recipes from the Bryan College Jubilee Salad Fair Luncheon and Handicraft Exhibit, October 6, 1980.

Blueberry Supreme by Jackie Ferguson

1 3-oz. pkg. black cherry jello
2 bananas, sliced
1 can blueberry pie filling
1 16 oz. can crushed pineapple
½ cup pecans
Dissolve jello in 1 cup boiling water.  Fold in all fruits and nuts.  Chill until firm.
Topping:  1 8-oz. pkg. cream cheese
1 8-oz. carton sour cream
½ cup sugar
1 t. vanilla
Beat all until creamy and spread on jello.  Serves 12. 

Quick Cranberry Salad by Billie Doty

1 3-oz. pkg. orange jello
1 cup boiling water
1 can whole cranberry sauce
1 small can, crushed pineapple
Grated peel from 1 orange
¾ cup chopped nuts
Dissolve jello in boiling water.  Add the other ingredients in the order listed.  If desired, allow to set in a mold.  If desired, add chopped tart apples and celery.  This salad is especially good with chicken and turkey dishes.

Chicken Salad by Pearl Wallace

4 cups cubed cooked chicken
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup halved seedless green grapes
1 pkg. slivered almonds, toasted
1 t. salt
¼ t. pepper
¾ cup mayonnaise
¼ cup sour cream
Combine the first four ingredients in a large mixing bowl.  Sprinkle salt and pepper over the mixture.  Add mayonnaise and sour cream and mix thoroughly.  Chill well before serving.  Serve on lettuce.  Serves 6.

Broccoli Medley by Linda Pendergrass

1 large bunch fresh broccoli, chopped, stalk and all
4 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
1 medium purple onion, chopped
12 stuffed olives, sliced
8 fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 cup mayonnaise
1 t. lemon juice
1 t. sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
Combine the first five ingredients.  Combine the remaining ingredients and toss with the vegetables.  Serves 6-8.

Spinach Salad by Susan Wilhoit

1 pkg. fresh spinach
1 small onion
2 or 3 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
1 cup whole dry-roasted nuts
½ c. salad oil
4 T. lemon juice
1 t. salt
1 t. sugar
½ t. pepper
Wash, remove stems, and dry spinach; break into pieces.  Mix ingredients together and toss with the dressing, the ingredients of which have been shaken in a jar with lid.  Serves 6.