The Secrets Are Out: Butterfield Cooks Share Their Recipes

Further evidence of Butterfield feeling like a big family is the occasional willingness to swap “secret” family recipes. A retirement move to the Village and the convenience of dining services doesn’t necessarily mean lifelong kitchen talents are shelved altogether. At times, BTV staff members have managed to convince residents to share time-tested favorite recipes, helping ensure those great flavors and traditions continue into a tasty future. We invite you to try three delicious choices that might just become part of your own culinary adventures!


Margaret Hunt’s Zucchini Bread

Yield: 2 regular loaves, 4 mini-loaves or 8 muffins

There are many recipes for a perennial favorite – zucchini bread. Delicious any time of year, this excellent and easy quick bread is especially helpful when the squash is in great abundance in the summer. Butterfield Financial Analyst Tricia Parette was able to convince resident Margaret Hunt to pass along the recipe for her own failsafe and fantastic version. This particular bread is full of texture, boasts a perfectly balanced flavor and freezes well. According to our taste-testers, it’s exceptional.


1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
3 eggs
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup raisin (regular or golden)
2 cups grated zucchini (skin on)
1/2 cup chopped pecans


• Pre-heat oven to 325° and prepare pans with cooking spray.

• Cream together oil and both sugars, then add eggs and mix well.

• Add next six ingredients, continuing to mix well. Stir in squash, then add raisins and pecans.

• Pour batter into loaf pans and bake one hour or until a straw or toothpick comes back clean from the middle of the loaf. Remove from the oven and turn bread out of pans onto a wire rack to cool.


Earlene Swepston’s Greek Rice

Most of us have vivid recollections of favorite foods prepared by friends and loved ones no longer with us – and having one of their special recipes helps rekindle our fond memories of them. The late Earlene Swepston kindly shared her excellent recipe for Greek Rice with BTV Director of Programs/Events Riki Stamps. This very unique dish is packed with flavors and textures, and makes an excellent potluck contribution because it’s great served hot or cold.


4 cups cooked brown rice
1 lb cooked, crumbled bacon
1 chopped red, yellow or orange sweet pepper
1 bunch chopped green onions
1 cup golden raisins
1 cup sweetened coconut
2 Tbsp nigella seeds (optional – can also use black or white sesame seeds)
1 Tbsp truffle oil (may wish to adjust to taste)
Garlic salt, to taste


 • Combine all ingredients and mix well. Flavors will intensify if refrigerated for a few hours or overnight.

 • A Christmastime variation of this recipe includes the addition of candied gingerroot and candied lemon peel. 


Marolyn Fields’ Famous Homemade Strawberry Jam (aka Quick & Easy Freezer Jam)

Yield: 6 half-pint jars

Those lucky enough to know resident Marolyn Fields are sometimes doubly lucky when she decides to make her homemade strawberry freezer jam. While the recipe for this wonderful treat is attributed to her in local circles, Marolyn readily admits it is actually found in the Sure-Jell fruit pectin box. “I just claim it as my own since I make it so often!” Her recipe was shared at the request of Butterfield Move-In Coordinator Dave Marks, who says his son Oliver can’t get enough of it.


2 cups crushed fresh strawberries (approximately 4 cups of whole berries)
4 cups sugar
1 package Original Sure-Jell fruit pectin


• Put crushed berries in a big bowl. (Marolyn purees hers in a food processor.) Add sugar and let stand at least 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to mix thoroughly.

Stir together one package of Sure-Jell Fruit Pectin and 3/4 cup of water in a small saucepan. (Pectin may be lumpy.) Bring to a boil on high heat, stirring constantly. Boil for one minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.

• Add pectin mixture to the fruit mixture; stir three minutes or until sugar is completely dissolved and no longer grainy. (A few sugar crystals may remain.)

• Fill jelly jars immediately, leaving at least 1/2-inch space at the top for expansion during freezing. Cover with lids.

• Let stand at room temperature for 24 hours or until set. Refrigerate up to three weeks or freeze up to one year.