Friday, March 21, 2008

The Goodies

While Mary Hell bustled around the kitchen and I sat on the bar stool observing this flurry of activity, we reminisced, laughed, and gossiped as much as we could. Once in a while Betty Crocker tried to sneak out of me, offering suggestions on what might make a delightful addition to the goodies. For the most part, I kept her at bay, not wanting that monster to rear it's ugly head. hehehe. Now this was not intended to be a sit-down meal, just a "help yourself when you feel the urge to nibble" sort of thing. That said, here are the results:

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This salad/dip was created from frozen mixed veggies containing mini bow tie pasta. They were steamed for a few minutes, then left to cool while Mary H. chopped fresh peppers, (orange and green), and celery. Next addition was fresh grated carrots and some thinly sliced green onions. Finally it was dressed with Dorothy something-or-other dressing. (Betty C. suggested Berstein's Cheese Fantastico would also be lucious). It then went into the refrigerator to cool and meld the flavors. It was yummy!

Next..........more chopped/sliced veggies for the Shrimp salad:

Shrimp salad, a family favorite

This has been a family favorite for many, many years containing fresh chopped tomatoes, celery, green onion, radish, cucumber and head lettuce. Betty sometimes adds some Romaine and baby spinach. Toss together with one can (or more, for a crowd) of whole med shrimp, the costly kind (about $4, but worth it for the flavor). Cover and put it the fridge for the flavors to meld. Just before serving, dress it with plain old mayo (NO Miracle Whip)...it needs the delicate flavor. Again, Betty C. adds a little milk to thin the mayo so it isn't as heavy on the delicate lettuce. This salad is great for a light supper, served with fresh French bread and BUTTER, of course.

A simple meat entree came next:

Italian meat balls-juicy, spicy and succulent

This dish was the easiest of all, thanks to the Schwann Company. You, know the one that delivers that fabulous ice-cream to your door. I forgave Mary H for this one because a girl needs help once in while, doncha think? They went into the crock pot, along with some gourmet beef broth from a box, (No, not Swanson)and a little extra seasoning (whatever trips your trigger) and then simmered on low until hot, bubbly, and juicy. It was my first time to try these and I must say, they were delicious. I shall contact the Schwann man in my area.

And, of course, the bread:

Cheesy Italian bread sticks-made from scratch

These beauties took about ten minutes to make. To a simple baking powder biscuit dough, Mary H, added about a cup-and-a-half of grated Parmesan and Romano cheese and about a tablespoon of dried Italian seasoning. A little milk was added to these dry ingredients to form a soft dough, which was kneaded for a short minute, them rolled out to an oval about 1/8 of an inch thick. She then sliced the dough, diagonally, about 3/4 in wide. Each of these strips was given the spiral twist you see in the picture. About a half pound of butter was melted onto a cookie sheet, after which each bread stick was rolled in the butter and placed on the same sheet. Into the oven for about ten minutes at, I'm guessing, 375 degrees, or until golden brown. As you can see, she almost forgot the second batch, but they were delicious!

Great food, perfect for any informal get together. As an added note, there were crackers and chips, cheese, etc. for snacking. One creation, I particulary enjoyed was made using Lay's Scoops white corn chips. (looks like micro mini taco salad bowls) It was a spoonful of the veggie/pasta salad, put into the Scoop, topped with an Italian meat ball. Cold, warm, and yummy all at once. The food was enjoyed by all. You will see some of those folks next time. Have a wonderful Easter everyone!

1 comment:

Michelle said...

wow! Everything looks delicious! Its early morning and I'm drinking my coffee but its still making me drool!!!