John and Stacey Peter of Dedham have five girls: Kara, a 3rd grader, Kalee, a 5th grader, Kolbi, 1 year old, Kaci, in preschool, and Kendra, a 7th grader.
John and Stacey Peter of Dedham have five girls: Kara, a 3rd grader, Kalee, a 5th grader, Kolbi, 1 year old, Kaci, in preschool, and Kendra, a 7th grader.
Monday, January 17, 2011

DEDHAM — Five happy and healthy daughters mean 10 helping hands in the kitchen. Stacey (Dailey) Peter and husband, John “JP”, of Dedham, share kitchen duty and are lucky to have willing helpers on their hands.

Stacey, a 1993 Carroll High School graduate and administrator of Mallard View Inc., since 1995, and JP, a 1988 Kuemper Catholic High School graduate and driver/salesman for Auen Distributing, take turns cooking family meals, although Stacey admits JP cooks 75 percent of the time.

The Peter family enjoys using recipes that are easy and use common ingredients. Dinner needs to be relatively hassle-free since the three oldest girls are actively involved in sports.

Oldest, Kendra is in 7th grade, Kalee is in 5th grade, Kara is in 3rd grade, and Kaci is in preschool. All attend Kuemper Catholic School. The youngest of the five girls is Kolbi, who just turned 1. Kendra and Kalee both play basketball and Kara loves soccer. JP enjoys coaching the girls’ sports teams.

Between school and sports, the family enjoys eating dinner together, although mealtime can vary with busy schedules.

The four oldest girls love to help their mom and dad prepare dinner. Seventh- grader Kendra even likes to start dinner on her own. Preschooler Kaci, loves going through the cupboards to find the right ingredients. She will ask cute questions, like, “What color is the bottle?” and “Mom, does it start with this letter?”

Stacey and JP appreciate all the help they can get. Their rule is, “If you help cook, you can rest after dinner, otherwise you are in charge of clean up.” This definitely motivates the girls to assist with dinner preparation, while teaching them how to cook along the way.

The Peter girls love snacks and desserts, especially for their birthday parties. Stacey says she always has extra food on hand because even with five daughters of her own, there always seem to be extra children around!

Hamburger Soup

This is a “kid friendly” recipe from Stacey’s late grandmother, Rita Tigges, of Willey. Her grandma passed away in 1991 and she was very special to Stacey. No matter what, her Grandma Tigges always made her feel important. When Stacey was a child, she and her grandma would read stories and make homemade play-doh. Her grandma was also great at cooking family dinners and this was a family favorite served on the weekends.

Stacey said she has never met anyone who does not like this soup and it’s a definite favorite of all five Peter girls. It is good as leftovers and freezes well.

Recently, Stacey’s 1-year-old daughter, Kolbi’s had her first shot at eating solid foods. She loved it and even had second helpings.

1-1 1/2 lbs browned hamburger

1 diced onion

6-7 cups water

5 beef bouillon cubes
2 cans of cream of celery soup
1 cup of canned carrots (diced or sliced)

2 (6 oz) pkgs of frozen noodles

4-6 Tbsp of Worcesterhire sauce


Combine all ingredients except noodles. Bring to a boil, then add noodles. Bring to another boil and simmer for 8 minutes and serve. Freezes well.

Pizza Burgers

These sandwiches are an alternative to the usual sloppy Joes. If your kids like pizza, they will like these too. The meat freezes well for quick sandwiches on a busy school night in between activities.

1-1/2 lb hamburger

1 Tbsp garlic salt

1 diced onion

8 oz mozzarella cheese 

4 oz. cheddar cheese

1 Tbsp oregano

1 can tomato soup

1/4 cup vegetable oil

Brown hamburger with onion and cool completely. Then add mozzarella, cheddar, oil, oregano, and tomato soup. Mix well and add to hamburger. Pile on an open faced bun. Broil 3 to 5 minutes and replace top of bun.

Ham and Turkey Stromboli

This recipe comes from the wife of Stacey’s brother, Ben Dailey. Ben, wife Emily, and daughter, Alice, live in Loveland, Colorado. Stacey says Emily is an amazing cook. The Peter family served these Stromboli this year at Christmas.

1 loaf of frozen white bread dough

1/3 lb shaved deli turkey breast

1/3 lb shaved deli ham

sliced or shredded Swiss cheese

sliced or shredded sharp cheddar cheese

dried oregano

On a baking sheet coated with nonstick cooking spray, thaw bread dough according to directions. Once dough is thawed and has risen, stretch to cover baking sheet. Begin by layering Swiss, then ham, then turkey, and top with cheddar. Sprinkle with oregano. Roll up dough to cover ingredients. Make sure the ends are tucked under and the seam is down on the baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap sprayed with nonstick cooking spray for about an hour. Dough will rise a bit more. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Zesty Cheese Dip

This is an easy dip perfect for Super Bowl Sunday to serve with most any kind of cracker.
2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese
2 8-oz packages of softened cream cheese
1 (1oz) pkg of Hidden Valley Ranch Dip mix
1/2 to 3/4 cup beer
chopped green onions for garnish

Additional shredded cheddar cheese for garnish

In a bowl, combine cheddar cheese, cream cheese and ranch dip mix. Gradually stir in beer until mixture reaches desired consistency. Transfer to serving bowl. Garnish with green onion and additional cheese. Serve with crackers.

Strawberry Cookie Dessert

Stacey’s girls are big fans of this treat. It’s especially good in the summertime when strawberries are in season. The recipe comes from Wendy Sapp, of Carroll, who has babysat for the Peter girls for 10 years. Stacey says Wendy makes the best treats!
1 tube sugar cookie dough

1 8-oz pkg cream cheese softened and mixed with 1 tsp sugar
1 container of strawberry glaze-sliced strawberries

1 tub of whipped topping (thawed)

Bake cookie dough as directed in a 9 x 13 pan. Cool. Spread softened cream cheese and sugar mixture over the cookie crust. Spread glaze on to cream cheese mixture. Top with sliced strawberries and spread whipped topping over strawberries.

Salted Nut Rolls

These bars are simple to make and a good treat to share with family and friends. They are perfect for “treat day” at work.

1 (12 oz) pkg of peanut butter chips

1 can sweetened condensed milk

1/4 cup butter

1 (10 oz) pkg mini marshmallows

1 (16 oz) jar of salted peanuts

Melt peanut butter chips, sweetened condensed milk and butter in a pan until completely melted. Mix in marshmallows and stir until marshmallows are coated. Place half of the peanuts in the bottom of a greased 9 x 13 pan, then pour mixture on top and spread evenly. Sprinkle remaining peanuts on top. Let cool completely before cut. These bars freeze well.