Wednesday, June 19, 2013

There's Salsa ♪♫•*¨*• ...and then there's "Salsa!"

Fruits and vegetables...sweet and savory... "S-A-L-S-A"..... Yum!!!! Who doesn't love those homemade summer salsas and Margaritas, of course.  These recipes are a party goer's favorite & healthy snack.  I don't think I've ever had any left over after a get-together.  When the relatives come, just put out the salsa and chips and you have an instant party. There are many kinds of salsas to pick from.  These are just a few, but I think no matter what recipe you use when making salsa, you can't go wrong.  Before summer ends, and you don't know what to do with all those left over veggies that you've grown, try one of these.  It's an "instant" party!... 

#1 - Jicama Watermelon Salsa

1 cup red watermelon, roughly cut
1 cup yellow watermelon, roughly chopped
1 cup Jicama, peeled and roughly chopped
1 fresh Jalapeno chili, seeded
2 T. fresh cilantro
3 T. fresh lime juice
salt to taste
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and give it a few light turns until you get a medium chunky salsa
Enjoy on chicken, fish, pork or with chips!

#2 - Corn Salsa by Wishbone

1/2 cup Wish-Bone Italian Dressing
1 can (11 oz.) whole kernel corn, drained (about 1-1/2 cups)
1 medium tomato, diced (about 1 cup)
1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded and diced (about 1 cup)
1/4 cup diced red onion
4 tsp. finely chopped jalapeno pepper or hot pepper sauce to taste (optional)
1 tsp. grated lime peel
Combine all ingredients in medium bowl. Cover and marinate in refrigerator at least 30 minutes. Serve chilled or at room temperature with your favorite chips and grilled foods.
Also terrific with Wish-Bone Robusto Italian, Light Italian or Fat Free Italian Dressing

#3 - Frozen Mango-Lime Margaritas
To rim glasses
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 lime wedge
1 cup fresh chopped mango
1/4 cup freshly-squeezed lime juice
1/2 cup tequila
1/4 cup triple sec
Honey (optional)
2-3 cups ice
Lime slices for garnish (optional)
1. Pour the sugar in a small saucer, then wet the rim of each glass with the lime wedge. Dip the rim of the glass into the sugar to coat. Set aside.
2. Add mango, lim juice, tequila, and triple sec to a blender and puree. Taste for sweetness--depending on your mango, it may be plenty sweet already, or you may want to add honey, a teaspoon or two at a time, until it's sweet enough. Add 2 cups ice and blend completely, adding additional ice to attain desired thickness.
3. Pour into glasses, garnish with a lime slice if desired, and serve.
Can substitute Grand Marnier for the Triple Sec

#4 - Fresh Fruit Salsa

Author writes... "Use any fresh fruit in season, cut into small pieces. This salsa is wonderful i the summer with BBQ!"

Peaches, strawberries, apricots, bananas, kiwi, oranges, grapes,
Brown sugar
Lime juice
cilantro, chopped
Cut up a combination of colorful fruit, (2-3 cups) sprinkle approximately one tablespoonbrown sugar and the juice of one lime. Add chopped cilantro approximately one-two tablespoons. Refrigerate and serve.

#5 - Sweet & Spicy Strawberry Mango Salsa
Strawberry Mango Salsa (adapted from Eat, Live Run)
Yield 2 cups
3/4 cup diced strawberries
3/4 cup diced mango
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
2 T. diced red onion
2 T. chopped fresh cilantro leaves
2 tsps. honey, or more to taste
Juice of 1 lime
In a large bowl, combine strawberries, mango, jalapeno, onion, cilantro, honey and lime juice
Serve immediately...

#6 - Corn & Bean Salsa (aka Texas Caviar)
Cook the following ingredients to a rolling boil, stirring off and on and then let completely cool.
2 C. sugar
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. water
1 tsp. white pepper 
1 1/2 c. apple cider vinegar
1 c. vegetable oil
While the above is cooling, mix the following ingredients in avery large bowl...
1 small red onion, chopped
2 c. celery, chopped small
1 bell red pepper, diced small
1 bell green pepper, diced small
1 bell orange pepper, diced small
2 cans drained shoepeg corn
2 cans black beans, rinsed and drained 
2 cans regular corn, rinsed and drained

Add cooled liquid to the vegetables. Store in refrigerator overnight. Drain, and then serve with chips, or crackers or Scoops. If there are any leftovers, and in most instances there won't be, you can store in fridge for up to about a week.

#7 - Ultimate Frozen Strawberry Margarita

6 fluid oz. Tequilla
2 fluid oz. Triple Sec
8 oz. Frozen sliced strawberries in syrup
4 fluid oz. frozen limeade concentrate
Fill a blender with ice and crush.  Pour in the tequila and triple sec. Add the strawberries and limeade.  Blend for 30 seconds or until smooth. Serve inmargarita glasses with the rims dipped in sugar.
Makes 4 servings

I tried this recipe this weekend... it was "the Ultimate"....
Great recipe!!!

#8 - Pink Lemonade Margarita
1 tub CRYSTAL LIGHT Pink Lemonade Flavor Low Calorie Soft Drink Mix
1-1/2 cups cold water
1/2 cup cold orange juice
2 Tbsp. tequila
1 Tbsp. lime juice
5 cups crushed ice 

PLACE drink mix, water, orange juice, tequila and lime juice in blender container; cover.
BLEND on high speed until drink mix is dissolved.
ADD ice; cover. Blend on high speed until thickened and smooth. Serve immediately
Optional:  pour drink mixture over ice if you don't want a frozen Margarita

#9 - Fruit Salsa with Baked Cinnamon Chips
2 kiwis, peeled and diced
2 Golden Delicious apples - peeled, cored and diced
8 oz. raspberries
1-16 oz. carton of strawberries, diced
2 T. white sugar (more or less to taste)
1 T. brown sugar (more or less to taste)
3 T. fruit preserves, any flavor 
10 (10 inch) flour tortillas
Melted butter or butter flavored cooking spray
Cinnamon sugar:
1 cup white sugar
2 T. cinnamon

1. In a large bowl, thoroughly mix kiwis, apples, raspberries, strawberries, white sugar, brown sugar and fruit preserves. Cover and chill in the refrigerator at least 15 minutes.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
3. Coat one side of each flour tortilla with melted butter or butter flavored cooking spray. Sprinkle tortillas with desired amount of cinnamon sugar. Cut into wedges and arrange in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Spray again with cooking spray (not necessary if using melted butter).
4. Bake in the preheated oven 8 to 10 minutes. Repeat with any remaining tortilla wedges. Allow to cool approximately 15 minutes. Serve with chilled fruit mixture. This salsa can also be served with cinnamon graham crackers or cinnamon pita chips. Best when made and eaten the same day otherwise the fruit gives off too much juice and gets runny.

"Life's dessert first!"

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Summer Pasta Salad & Oatmeal Bread...

Spaghetti Pasta Salad

I'm sure everyone is like me, always looking for a salad that is good and easy for a compliment to a summer supper.  This recipe is an oldie, but goodie, but always a favorite.  Pair it with BBQ chicken, homemade oatmeal bread and iced tea, and you've got supper.

1 box spaghetti (break in 1/3's)
1 8 oz. bottle of Kraft Sun-Dried Tomato dressing (the original recipe called for Italian dressing,
            I prefer the Sun-Dried Tomato dressing)
1/4-1/2 jar Salad Supreme (you can find it in the seasoning isle of your grocery store)
1 small chopped onion (sweet vadalia) or scallions
1 green pepper
1 red (colored) pepper
1 can ripe olives (cut in half)
1 pkg. mushrooms
1 pkg. pepperoni (sliced & quartered)
1 pkg. summer sausage (optional) sliced thick and quartered
3-4 tomatoes - halved, scoop out seeds and then cut into chunks
5 or 6 pieces of string cheese or a brick of motzerrela cheese (cut into bite size pieces)

Cook the spaghetti el dente. Rinse with cold water and then store in refrigerator until needed.  Chop the green and red pepper into chunks, and halve the ripe olives.  Slice the mushrooms. (Tip... I use an egg slicer to make them pretty uniform) then slice in half. Quarter the pepperoni and slice the summer sausage in thick slices and then quarter).

Add all the ingredients in a bowl and pour the Kraft Sun-Dried Tomato dressing over everything.  Mix well.  Store in refrigerator for about an hour before serving.

Oatmeal Bread or Rolls

Many years ago when I did craft shows around the upper midwest, I purchased some pottery from another crafter. She had a recipe for her oatmeal bread that came with the pottery bowl.  I made the bread when I got back home and ever since then it has become one of my all time favorite breads.  It's very moist and the texture is wonderful. A great compliment to anything...

2 C. water
1 c. quick-cooking oats
3 T. margarine
1 pkg. active dry yeast
1/3 C. warm water
1/2 tsp. honey
1/3 C. packed brown sugar
1-1/2 tsp. salt
4-3/4 to 5-1/4 cups bread flour

Add oats, 2 cups water, and margarine for 1 minute.  Cool to lukewarm.  Dissolve yeast in warm water and honey. (The honey helps the yeast to bloom).Add cooled oat meal mixture to yeast mixture. Then add  sugar, salt and 4 cups of bread flour (1 cup at a time).  Knead in the rest of flour to form a stiff dough. Oil a large bowl and turn bread dough in bowl to coat.   Cover and let rise 1 hour.  (Tip: I cover the large bowl with plastic wrap and place in an oven that I heated to 250 degrees, turned off, and then waited for about 15 minutes before I placed the bowl in the oven). Punch down, cut in half for 2 loaves of  bread or cut into 18 rolls. 

Place in greased bread pan for bread or greased cookie sheet for rolls.  Cover and let rise on counter for about 30 minutes.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.
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I do hope you try both of these.  They are really great recipes.  Add that BBQ chicken, or steak and you have a wonderful summery treat.

"Life's dessert first!"