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                                         National Cooperative Month
                                         Celebrates The Cooperative
        Board of Trustees
                R.E. ADAMS
            President • Union Springs

                                                  hy are cooperatives recog-          get new businesses started and sup-
          PARKER GRAY MOUNT                       nized nationally with their         port their local communities.
            Vice President • Mathews              own month? It turns out
            B.B. SPRATLING JR.          there are many great reasons to cele-           ✷ If you do not like what your coop-
           Secretary/Treasurer • Roba
                                        brate cooperatives, especially at this        erative is doing, let us know.After all,
               SARA BOYKIN              point in time when it seems like there        we are a local part of your community
                                        is a new corporate scandal revealed           and are here to serve you.
               AARON ELLIS
                    Shorter             every week.
             I.D. McCLURKIN                What are some of the top reasons             ✷ Cooperatives are good employers
                      Cecil             that people have to celebrate coopera-        and the money employees earn and
               ALBERT PERRY             tives? Here are just a few:                   spend stays in the local community.
                 Union Springs
                JAMES SIKES                ✷ Cooperatives provide goods and            ✷ Cooperatives have been playing a
                   Pine Level
                                        services that may not otherwise be            major role in improving the lives of
                IRVIN WELLS
                   Pike Road            available, or at least, available at a rea-   Americans for many years.
                                        sonable price. In our case, cooperatives
               Locations                provide electricity, but 48,000 coopera-         A recent survey conducted by the
                                        tives all over the nation provide hous-       National Cooperative Business
            MAIN OFFICE                 ing, childcare, healthcare, groceries,        Association (NCBA) and the Consumer
          402 EAST BLACKMON             hardware, telecommunications and              Federation of America (CFA) showed
          POST OFFICE BOX 30            financial services.                           that these attributes are important to
        UNION SPRINGS, AL 36089                                                       most Americans. More specifically, the
          PIKE ROAD OFFICE                ✷ When you get services from a              survey found that Americans believe
          10613 TROY HIGHWAY            cooperative, you are more than a cus-         the business structure of cooperatives
          PIKE ROAD, AL 36064           tomer—you are a member-owner in               is more trustworthy than the structure
                                        that business.                                of large, publicly traded companies.
        ARROWHEAD OFFICE                                                              People feel that positive business
        9100 ATLANTA HIGHWAY              ✷ Cooperatives are accountable to           attributes like trustworthiness, ethical
        MONTGOMERY, AL 36117            you, the member-owners.This arrange-          operations and customer service better
                                        ment results in more competitive pric-        describe cooperatives than large, pub-
                                        ing, reliability and efficiency.              licly traded corporations.
             Office Hours
                                                                                         At Dixie Electric Cooperative, we are
              8 A.M. - 5 P.M.             ✷ Profits (margins) are returned to         committed to our member-owners and
              MONDAY-FRIDAY             our member-owners or used to make             we are proud to serve a portion of the
        Telephone Numbers               improvements to the electrical sys-           more than 120 million people who are
                                        tems. Either way the money stays in           members of cooperatives in the United
               MONTGOMERY               the local economy.                            States.We are proud to be a coopera-
              334.288.1163                                                            tive – businesses people trust.❖
              UNION SPRINGS               ✷ Cooperative members have a say
              334.738.2500              in the future of their cooperative
                TOLL-FREE               because they own the cooperative.
          TO REPORT A POWER               ✷ Cooperatives are socially responsi-
        OUTAGE, PLEASE USE OUR                                                                          Gary Harrison is
                                        ble organizations, dedicated to the well
                                                                                                        general manager
          www.dixieec.com               being of your community.They provide
                                        programs to area schools, sponsor and                           of Dixie Electric
         TERRI FAULKNER - EDITOR        participate in local charitable events,                         Cooperative.

4   Alabama Living October 2003

         You can now pay your bill online using a credit or debit card. In order to
         access our online billing system, you must first register for a username and

         Visit us on the Web at www.dixieec.com and select the pay bill button on
         the home page. Then read the instructions on the online billing page. If you
         select the option to register, you will be taken to a registration form to com-
         plete and submit to our office. Once your registration is processed, you will
         receive a username and password via e-mail.

   by    If you already have your username and password, select the pay bill button
         on the home page. Then select the access online billing system option on
         the online billing page. You will be taken to a page containing information
         about our online billing system. After reading about the system, simply
         select the customer login button to reach the login screen to enter your user-
         name and password.

Paying   Our online billing system will also allow you to view a current or previous
         bill on your account. This information can be useful in monitoring and
         managing your usage patterns in your home or business.

         If you have questions about the online billing system, e-mail us at
         billing@dixieec.com or give us a call. We hope this innovative new system

         allows us to better serve you.

                                                             Alabama Living October 2003   5
                                              COMMUNITY COMMITMENT

    The Tricks and Treats of the Trade
    By Terri Faulkner

   Thousands of pumpkins will illumi-      easier to carve and paint than small      that these tools can be dangerous and
nate the doorstep of homes through-        pumpkins.                                 should not be used by children. Be
out our area come Halloween, some            Do not carve your pumpkin too           sure to take safety precautions when
with elaborate carvings, others with       many days before you need it              carving a pumpkin.
simple faces and all able to delight       because carved pumpkins can shrivel
children as they eagerly await the         and mold. If you wish to keep your        Let the Carving Begin
time they can trick-or-treat.              pumpkin for a long time, take mea-
   For some pumpkin carving is not         sures to preserve the pumpkin.               Once you are ready to begin carv-
just a holiday tradition, it is an art       To protect against dryness and          ing, place the pumpkin on layers of
form.They search for the perfect           mold, cover the carved pumpkin with       newspaper and clean the outside of
pumpkin and plan a design that will        plastic wrap and put the pumpkin          the pumpkin with a wet rag to
leave neighbors and friends in awe.        into the refrigerator when it is not on   remove dirt and debris. Use a long,
Just how do these pumpkin artists do       display.You can also use specialized      thin bladed knife to cut out the top
it? We have researched and found           spray-on treatments that fight mold       of the pumpkin around the stem.The
some tricks of the trade to help you       and help pumpkins last longer.To          best opening is a five to six sided
surprise your family with your own         reduce shriveling, coat the cut edges     opening that is cut at an angle so the
fabulous jack-o’-lantern this              of your carving with petroleum jelly.     lid will not fall into the hole. If the
Halloween.                                 You can revive a shriveled pumpkin        bottom of the pumpkin is not flat
   First, it is important to select your   by soaking it in water for 1 to 8         enough to accommodate a votive
design before you choose your pump-        hours.After removing it from the          candle, some prefer to cut the bot-
kin.The shape of the pumpkin will          water, let it drain for one-half hour     tom of the pumpkin instead.
ultimately impact the look of your         then dry it carefully. If your pumpkin       After the lid is removed, begin
jack-o’-lantern. Some prefer to draw       molds or turns soft, there is nothing     removing the seeds and membrane
their own design, while others rely        you can do.                               from the inside of the pumpkin with
on ready made templates.These tem-           Be sure to have the tools of the        your hand or a large spoon. Continue
plates can be found in party supply        trade handy when you start carving        using the spoon to scrape the inside
stores and online. Our Web site,           your pumpkin.The experts recom-           of the pumpkin. For basic designs,
www.dixieec.com, contains links to         mend a scraper, poker, boning knife       the wall of the pumpkin should be
several Web sites where free template      and small hand saws.The more              approximately one inch thick and for
downloads are available.                   adventuresome carvers also use drill      more detailed designs, the wall
   Once you have selected your             bits and power tools. Some compa-         should be approximately one-half
design, you are ready to head out to       nies actually have pumpkin carving        inch thick.The thickness will deter-
the pumpkin patch. Be sure to              kits on the market that you can pur-      mine the difficulty in cutting the
choose a pumpkin that is ripe and          chase at most party supply stores. Ice    design.
has no bruises, cuts or nicks.Also,        cream scoops and large spoons can            Draw your design on the pumpkin
check to see if the pumpkin has a flat     be used as scrapers. Nails can be used    or tape a template to it. If you use a
bottom and a smooth texture.               as pokers to transfer the patterns        template, you may need to use a copi-
Remember that large pumpkins are           onto the pumpkin.Always remember          er to enlarge or reduce it to fit your

6   Alabama Living October 2003
                                             COMMUNITY COMMITMENT

pumpkin.Transfer the design using a
nail to make pinpoint marks 1/16 inch
to 1/8 inch apart along the design
lines.When the design is completely
transferred, take the pattern off the
                                            Pumpkins, Pumpkins
   Using carving saws or a sharp, thin
blade knife, cut along the dots or the
lines of the design you have drawn. Be
sure to gently saw up and down                and plenty of food to eat
through the wall of the pumpkin to
avoid breaking the saw or knife.
Experts recommend starting with the           When planning your pumpkin carving activities, do
smaller sections first. If you enjoy
using power tools, consider using a         not forget to try some pumpkin recipes as well.
drill for small holes in the design.
Drills can also be used to remove long      Pumpkins are not only tasty; they are just plain good
thin sections in your design.               for you. Most people do not realize pumpkins can
   If you choose to use a votive candle
in the pumpkin, consider cutting a          offer nutritious variety to a meal or dessert. They are
chimney area out of the back of the
pumpkin to allow heat and smoke to          low in fat, low in calories and loaded with vitamins.
escape from the pumpkin once the lid
is in place. Flashlights and battery can-                                          or blender about 2 minutes, scraping
dles can also be used to illuminate            Pumpkin Cheesecake                  down sides 2 or 3 times, until thick
your pumpkin.                                                                      and smooth.Add brown sugar,
Paint on a Happy Face                          1
                                                ⁄3 c reduced-calorie margarine,    process until sugar dissolves.Add
                                                                                   eggs and egg whites then process
                                                     room temperature.
                                                                                   just until blended.Transfer to a large
  Although carved pumpkins are more            2 c graham-cracker crumbs
                                                                                   bowl. Stir in pumpkin, cornstarch,
traditional, many people have started                                              spice and vanilla until well blended
painting them for a more colorful              Filling:
                                                                                   and smooth.
look. Painting causes less mess and                 1 container (24 ounces)
will extend the life of the pumpkin as                nonfat cottage cheese
                                                                                     Pour into crust. Bake 1 hour and
long as a lid is not cut and the pulp                 (3 cups)
                                                                                   20 minutes or until top of cake
and seeds are not scraped from its            12 oz light cream-cheese
                                                                                   looks set. Shut off oven. Cool com-
interior. If you have small children, you      11⁄4 c packed light-brown sugar
                                                                                   pletely on wire rack. Cover and
may wish to paint your pumpkin so                   2 large egg whites
                                                                                   refrigerate in pan at least 6 hours or
they are able to participate in the pro-            2 large eggs
                                                                                   up to 4 days. Serves 8.
ject.                                               1 can (16 ounces) solid-
  When painting, you will need art                    pack pumpkin
paints and brushes. Durable art paints              2 tablespoon cornstarch
                                                    2 teaspoon pumpkin-pie
                                                                                                 continued on page 8
are best suited for this type project
because they last longer than wash-                   spice
                                                    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
able watercolors.
  You can put a design on the pump-
kin by drawing freehand or by trans-          Lightly grease bottom and sides of
ferring the design from a template          9x3-inch spring form pan.
using the pushpin or poker method as
described earlier. Once the design is in      Crust:
place, paint the design using the col-        Mix margarine and cracker
ors you prefer. Fluorescent colors          crumbs in a bowl until evenly moist-
work well to create a glowing night-        ened. Press over bottom and 2 inch-
time effect.                                es up sides of prepared pan.
  The most important thing to remem-
ber when decorating your pumpkin              Filling:
for Halloween is to be creative and           Heat oven to 325 degrees F.
have fun.As with any project, practice      Process cottage cheese and cream
makes perfect.                              cheese product in a food processor

                                                                                              Alabama Living October 2003   7
                                               COMMUNITY COMMITMENT

               Pumpkin Butter                        Pumpkin Seeds                        Chili, Pumpkin Style
       ⁄4 c1
                dark brown sugar, packed      Extract seeds from pumpkin.                    2c    fresh or canned pumpkin
2 tbsp.         sugar                       Separate and discard pulp.                   3 lbs.    Lean ground beef
       ⁄4 c     water                       Thoroughly wash seeds in warm              2 cans      red kidney beans
  ⁄2 tsp.       allspice                    water. Spread seeds out onto a cookie              2   medium onions, chopped
  ⁄4 tsp.       ginger                      sheet. Sprinkle with salt.                 3 cans      (15 oz.) cut tomatoes
  ⁄4 tsp.       cloves                                                                 2 tbsp.     Chili powder
  ⁄4 tsp.       nutmeg                         Put in oven and bake at 350
                                                                                         ⁄4 tsp.   red pepper (optional)
  ⁄2 tsp.       cinnamon                    degrees for approximately 20 min-          2 tbsp.     Sugar
    11⁄2 c      pumpkin (canned puree or    utes. Check every five minutes and          1 tsp.     salt
                make your own)              stir adding more salt to taste. Check              2   bay leaves
                                            seeds to see if they are done by                 1c    mushrooms (optional)
  Combine the two sugars, water, all-       allowing several to cool and tasting. If
spice, ginger, cloves, nutmeg and cin-      the insides are dry, they are done.           Brown ground beef and drain off
namon in a 4-cup glass measure. Mix         Allow to cool and serve.                   excess fat. Put ground beef into a
well on high 3 minutes; stir.Add                                                       large pot.Add each ingredient into
pumpkin and mix well on high 5                 For flavor variation, try using         the pot. Cook on low for 1 to 2
minutes. Let cool and refrigerate.          cheesy popcorn, taco or Cajun sea-         hours. Serve with crackers.
Keeps several weeks in refrigerator or      soning.Want more ideas? Just think of
can be frozen. Use as you would             all the popcorn seasoning varieties
apple butter.Yields 2 cups.                 and try them out on the pumpkin
                                                                                         Here are some statistics on
           Pumpkin Nut Bread                  Leftover seeds can be kept fresh in         the nutritional value of
                                            an airtight container or frozen for
           1 c fresh or canned pumpkin      extended periods.                               one cup of pumpkin
           2 c sifted flour                                                                         puree:
           1 c sugar
               2 eggs                                  Pumpkin Pie                                Calories: 80
            ⁄2 c milk                                                                     Carbohydrates: 19 grams
            ⁄4 c soft butter or margarine        11⁄2 c cooked, strained pumpkin
           1 c chopped walnuts                           (or canned)                            Cholesterol: 0
    2     tsp. baking powder                       2
                                                    ⁄3 c sugar                              Fat: less than 1 gram
     ⁄2   tsp. baking soda                         1
                                                    ⁄4 c brown sugar
    1     tsp. cinnamon                          11⁄2 c evaporated skim milk             Potassium: 588 milligrams
     ⁄2   tsp. nutmeg                         3
                                               ⁄4 tsp. cinnamon                               Protein: 2.4 grams
    1     tsp. salt                           1
                                               ⁄8 tsp. ground cloves
                                               ⁄4 tsp. ginger                             Vitamin A: 310% of RDA
  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Stir           1 tsp. grated orange peel                    Vitamin C: 20% of RDA
together the flour, baking powder,
                                               ⁄4 tsp. nutmeg                                                Source: USDA
baking soda and spices.
                                               ⁄4 tsp. salt
                                                       1 unbaked pie shell
  In a separate large bowl, combine                    3 eggs
pumpkin, sugar, milk and eggs.Add             Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Mix
dry ingredients and butter to pump-         pumpkin, sugars, orange peel and
kin mixture until well blended. Mix         spices in large bowl.Add evaporated
in chopped nuts.                            milk and eggs. Mix all ingredients
                                            well. Pour pumpkin filling into pie
  Pour into greased loaf pans (9x5x3).      shell. Bake at 450 degrees for 15 min-
Bake in oven for 45 to 55 minutes.          utes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees and
Check with a toothpick. It is done          bake for 45 minutes more.
when the toothpick comes out clean.

8         Alabama Living October 2003

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