Friday, October 31, 2008

Layered Green Salad

This recipe is from Marjorie Clark. She was in my ward growing up and is one of the nicest people you could ever meet. She was (now retired) a Kindergarten teacher whose class was so well organized that you could hear a pin drop, everyone was always on task, and she spoke in a sweet tones. She is the mother of all boys. And she helped throw my bridal shower. This is the dish she made for it. (I have modified it a little - I like more spinach.) This is also one of Diane's favorite salads.
One thing I love about it is that there are lots of vegetables in it. But they are layered in such a way and chopped small so that you don't even see all that you are eating. This is an old school recipe, but everyone always raves about it. I have written this recipes out scores of times: when I make it, people always ask for the recipe. Another great aspect of it is, that it needs to be made ahead. A green salad that has to be made ahead? When I sign up to bring a salad to church but I have no time to do it right ahead of time, this is my salad. Any buffet or meal that you need a salad AND cannot do it ahead of time: this is a great one.

1 small head iceberg lettuce, cleaned, dried, and torn in small bite size pieces
2 cups fresh spinach, cleaned, dried, and torn in small bite size pieces
1/2 cup small cauliflower buds
1/2 cup diced celery
1/2 cup diced green pepper
1/2 cup small broccoli buds
1/2 cup chopped green onions

In a 9x11 Pyrex dish (clear glass is the most attractive) layer all ingredients, in order, starting with the iceberg. Scatter each one on top of the other.

Take one package of Frozen Peas, left frozen, and spread on top. The salad should be densely covered in frozen peas.

2 cups mayonnaise
2 Tbsp sugar

Mix together the mayo and sugar. Spread over the peas like you are frosting a cake, making sure the edges are sealed.

1/2 lbs shredded cheddar cheese
8 slices of bacon, fried crisp, drained, and crumbled

Sprinkle cheese and bacon over the top. Cover with plastic wrap and chill overnight or at least six hours.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Sweet Potato Casserole with Praline Topping

Arnold Palmer's Restaurant in La Quinta places Macaroni & Cheese under the heading of vegetable. Now, I am no nutrition or food science major, but that is pushing it a little. Classifying this dish as anything else but a dessert is pushing it a little too. There are, indeed, vegetables in it. But by the time you add all the goodies, well lets just say that children would never have issues with vegetables if we could find a way to make all of them taste like this one. The original recipe called for only 2 1/2 lbs. of sweet potatoes. I upped it to 4 so I could feel a little better about calling it a vegetable.This is also a favorite at Thanksgiving or Christmas. I start craving it as soon as I see a fall leaf decoration in a store. I am like Pavlov's dog. I become inexplicably drawn to the sweet potatoes. So I try to sneak an extra serving of this in October as well. Usually at a Caress Family dinner.

There is still the praline topping versus marshmallow topping debate. I find that marshmallows are a non-issue after one bite of this. I wonder how marshmallows would spruce up cauliflower?

1 cup flour
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted
1/2 stick of love (butter for those who are not fluent in Paula Deen)
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Combine in a small bowl, stirring to form a streusel. Set aside.

About 4 pounds sweet potatoes (canned or fresh. If fresh, boil them until soft before starting.)
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1/2 cup evaporated milk

Mash potatoes in a large bowl. Stir in other ingredients. Stir in 1 cup ONLY of the streusel. Mix well. Pour into a 2 quart casserole coated with cooking spray. Top with remaining streusel. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Serve warm.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Chicken Adobo

This recipe is from Jean Ginther (see Lumpia) This is a Filipino recipe. The texture of the onions is to die for so don't chop finely. Serve with steamed rice so it absorbs all the lovely juices.

1/2 cup oil
2 medium brown onions (medium chop)
2 lbs chicken breast, boneless, chopped in one inch cubes
pepper to taste
6 cloves of garlic, crushed
4 bay leaves (whole)
3/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup white vinegar

Heat oil and add all of the garlic, then onion and cook until garlic and onion is lightly browned. Add chicken and saute until the chicken is beginning to tenderize. Stir occasionally.

Add remaining ingredients and let simmer for 35-45 minutes or until chicken is tender. Stir occasionally.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Strawberry Freezer Jam

This recipe is from Portia Walker. Well actually it is from the back of the package, but Portia gave it to us at an Enrichment demo. It tastes like fresh strawberries. Portia brought homemade rolls to spoon it onto and normally I like the rolls better than any topping. This was an exception.1 pouch fruit jell freezer jam pectin
4 cups crushed strawberries
1 1/2 cups sugar

Combine sugar and pectin and stir well. Take 2 cups of strawberries and chop to desired consistency. Take the other half and puree in a blender. Combine strawberries with sugar mixture and stir for about three minutes. Ladle jam into clean jars or freezer containers, leaving a 1/2 inch head space. Apply lids. Let stand until thickened, about thirty minutes.

Refrigerate up to 3 weeks or freeze for up to 1 year.

Yields five 8 oz jars.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Scotchie Recipe

This recipe is from Kirsti McCleary. As with most of her recipes they are similar to others, but hers are just a notch above everyone else's. For example, most do not have enough of the chocolate. This one is very generous in the chocolate topping. It is our traditional treat to have while watching General Conference and the Superbowl. In fact, the first time we had it was when Kirsti brought it over for a Superbowl party. Since moving away from each other, I had to get the recipe because well, we just could not live without it. Kirsti is one of those people that is as nice as the day is long. She has a great singing voice and has done a few recordings and starred in a number of community theater musicals. She knows how to throw a party like no other. We were in the same ward when we were first married. Dave and Ryan have always been best golfing buddies. Kirsti and I were both in education. We have been there for each other and we hope that we can stay close forever. Anyway enough gushing. On to the best Scotchies ever.

1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cup light karo syrup
1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
1 box rice chex cereal
1 1/2 cups butterscotch chips
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Boil together the karo syrup and sugar. Add peanut butter and stir until smooth. Pour over cereal in a big bowl. Mix it together until the cereal is thoroughly coated. Spread it on two foil or waxed paper covered cookie sheets. Flatten it out to the edges. Melt the chips together in the micro wave for two minutes at 50% power. Stir until smooth. Fleck or spread over the chex. Let harden and then break up into chunks and serve.