Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Nine months ago I started a journey with 18 strangers in a program through Ohio Farm Bureau called AgriPower. If you aren’t familiar with the program it is designed to empower farmers and ag professionals through intensive training of communication, advocacy and our diverse industry to become a powerful voice of agriculture.My AgriPower group came together with diverse agricultural backgrounds, but a shared passion for agriculture. Farm Bureau immersed us in a comfortable learning environment and gave us a BIG picture look at the ag industry and the tools we need to make vital and influential messages as political advocates, spokespeople and overall leaders.In our first session we were told to present a short speech on a topic of our choice. I chose a passionate topic for me — the kitchen table. I quoted Doris Christopher, the founder of The Pampered Chef. She states in her book “Come to The Table,” “Round or square, mahogany or oak the table is the heart of every home, the nucleus of domestic life.” The food is what gets us to the table providing the bread of life, but the table is the secret ingredient. In a lifetime, close to 18,000 meals are shared over a table. Around the table, celebrations, family deals, homework and wanted and unwanted advice is given and taken. Through shared meals, families and people are able to unplug, connect and share laughter creating priceless memories of a lifetime.Just like the family table, the AgriPower table brought together 19 strangers. Through a relaxed environment many discussions across the table (conference) were had, regarding GMO labeling, pesticide useage, CAUV and other hot button issues affecting agriculture today. Around the table, correct manners and other lessons improving our public speaking, policy making and political processes were learned.We enjoyed some fantastic food as well, including visits to Fogo de Chão, Filomenia. We shared over 35 meals as well as countless laughs, creating a bond that helped us establish a connection for years to come. Over the last meal we shared together, we listened to Jack Fisher charge us to get involved and to become the leaders of tomorrow. He talked about the book “Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action.” We came as strangers to the table and left as friends with an allegiance for life. Go lead, inspire and share your passion AgriPower VII. Stay in touch and I can’t wait to see the BIG things in store for us!Eat well and healthy!Shelly Here are some recipe favorites from my AgriPower friends. Poticia Dough Jeff Adams, Champaign CountyThis is an old family recipe, Pennsylvania Dutch via Slovenia. We make it once a year and enjoy it every Sunday morning. Dough2 pkg. yeast4 Tbsp. lukewarm water1 tsp. sugar1 ½ c oleo1 cup sugar4 cups scalded milk12 cups flour,divided2 Tbsp. salt.2 tsp. lemon rind6 beaten eggs2 tsp. vanilla Nut filling (Nut goo)3 pounds pecans, ground1 ½ c scalded milk1 cup butter½ cup honey2 ½ c sugar2 pinches salt4 tsp. vanilla6 beaten eggs4 tsp. cinnamon Nut filling: Cook and stir over low heat until butter is melted and heated through. Divide for number of loaves.Dough: Stir 1st 3 ingredients together and let sit. Cut up oleo and 1 cup sugar and put in a large mixer bowl. Pour scalded milk over oleo and sugar. Mix in 6 cup flour. Add salt, lemon rind, eggs and vanilla, yeast mixture in this order, separately. Knead in last 6 cups of flour for 15 minutes. Let rise till double. Divide into 12 balls and roll each into a rectangle. Spread nut filling and cinnamon/sugar mixture. Roll up and let rise again, covered for 1 ½-2 hours or until double. Brush with beaten egg. Prick top to prevent bubbles. Bake 350° for 20 minutes. Corn CasseroleLibby Bender, Marion CountyThis is one of my family’s favorites. 1 box jiffy muffin mix1/3 c sugar1 can regular corn1 can creamed corn1 stick butter1 egg2/3 c sour cream Bake in a greased 9 X 13. Bake for 375° for 45 minutes until done. Gramma Jean’s Rhubarb Strawberry PieElaine Beekman, Lorain CountyMy Gramma’s favorite dessert recipes. She was an awesome baker and regularly donated pies for charity auctions or baked cookies for after Sunday services. One year she had some pies go for over $800 at the Lorain County Jr. Fair Dairy Auction and usually they went for $500-600 each. She always seemed embarrassed when they sold for so much and sometimes would bake pies for the losing bidders to make up for them not winning. 3 c. Rhubarb3/4 c. Strawberries1 1/2 c. Sugar (or less to taste)2-3 T. Cornstarch (sometimes it takes more to thicken depending on how juicy the strawberries are)2 T. Tapioca Heat the rhubarb and strawberries in a saucepan. Mix together sugar, cornstarch, and tapioca, then add to fruit mix. Pour into unbaked pie shell and cover with a second pie crust or crumb crust. Bake at 375 for 45 minutes. Butterscotch BarsJessica Elson, Ashland CountyThis recipe is for my mom’s butterscotch bars, they are so delicious! 1/2 cup butter – melted2 cups brown sugar2 eggs2 cups flour1 tsp vanilla2 tsp baking soda Preheat oven to 350 degrees.Mix together melted butter and and brown sugar. Add eggs to mix one at a time. Mix well after each egg. Blend in remaining ingredients.Pour mixture into 9×13 greased baking dish and bake for 25 minutes. Let cool. Cut into bars and enjoy! Rum CakeMandy Way, Pike This is a family recipe passed down from multiple generations of my mother’s family. It’s a required dish every Christmas Eve at my grandmother’s house. I love to share this cake with family and friends! CAKE1 cup chopped pecans 1 18-1/2 ounce yellow cake mix 1 1-3/4 ounce (4 serving size) instant vanilla pudding 4 eggs 1/2 cup cold milk or water (either will work) 1/2 cup vegetable oil 1/2 cup Bacardi rum GLAZE 1/2 cup butter 1/4 cup water 1 cup sugar 1/2 cup Bacardi rum CAKE Preheat oven to 325 degree. Grease and flout a 12-cup bundt pan. (or you can use Baking Pam). Sprinkle nuts on bottom of pan. Combine all cake ingredients (except nuts) in a mixing bowl. Beat for 2 minutes on high with electric mixer. Pour into prepared bundt pan with nuts. Bake for 1 hour. Cool in pan. Invert on serving plate. Prick top with fork. Drizzle glaze over top of cake. Use brush or spoon to put extra drippings back on cake. Use all of glaze.GLAZE Melt butter in saucepan. Stir in water and sugar. Boil 5 minutes, stirring constantlyl. BRemove from heat and stir in rum. NOTE – The rum will cause steam. Be careful not to burn yourself. Pour glaze over cooled cake as above.Refrigerate. Keep cool.