I took a “classic” macaroni salad recipe and made a few changes to turn it into a chicken and macaroni salad, suitable for a meal. The white balsamic vinegar gives this dish a different flavor from the usual versions – I like it a lot.
BALSAMIC CHICKEN AND MAC SALAD
2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 Tblsp. white balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. yellow mustard
3/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. celery seed
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 Tbsp. dried minced onions
1 Tblsp. chopped pimiento
1 cup shredded cooked chicken
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the macaroni and cook until tender, 8-9 minutes. Rinse under cold water and drain. Dry the pasta as much as possible, blotting with a paper towel. Set aside.
In a large bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, mustard, salt, garlic, celery seed, black pepper, minced onions and pimiento. Stir in the drained macaroni. Add the chicken breast.
Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving, preferably overnight.
I’m posting a repeat of three recipes from 2008 that my family thinks make the best Lenten meal. I make this every Friday during Lent (7 Fridays in a row) and although I like more variety in my meals, my younger daughter loves this lunch so much that I go through the one-hour prep time so the two daughters and I can enjoy Our Favorite Lenten Meal: Salmon Patties, Macaroni and Cheese, and Scalloped Tomatoes. These three items just seem to go together so well.
Mom’s Salmon Patties
I make these patties the way my mother used to make her “salmon” patties, which were actually mackerel. Mother didn’t have the money for the expensive salmon and I think mackerel was about 10 cents per can back in the 1940s. Although I loved her version and didn’t have a very big food budget when I married, I always made the patties with salmon and used her method of adding only crackers, onions and seasoning to the mix, no egg (my mother used as few eggs as possible in every dish). My family prefers them this way and they are never as crispy on the outside and moist on the inside as when they are fried in Crisco.
MOM’S SALMON PATTIES
- 1 Tblsp. olive oil
- 1/2 cup chopped onions
- One 14-15 oz. can Alaskan pink salmon
- 12 saltine crackers, crushed
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Crisco for frying
In a small skillet, heat oil and saute onions on low heat until they are soft but not brown.
Drain salmon and remove any bones. Place salmon in a bowl and add the sauteed onions. Add the crushed saltines and a grind or two of black pepper. The saltines add enough salt for our taste. Mix together and form into 6 patties. The mixture should hold together but still be slightly moist.
Melt Crisco in a large skillet and add the patties, browning/cooking about 5 minutes on each side.
I’ve used several good macaroni and cheese recipes through the years, but this one has become my favorite because, with the use of lower fat ingredients such as milk, cheese and cottage cheese, it is not too bad cholesterol-wise and is still delicious.
SHANNON’S MACARONI & CHEESE
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9×9″ pan with non-stick spray
Cook macaroni in salted boiling water for approximately 8 minutes. Drain. Place in large bowl, add cheese and onion.
In a blender or food processor, blend cottage cheese, milk and mustard. Pour over the macaroni mixture. Add salt and pepper. Pour macaroni into prepared pan. Sprinkle bread crumbs on top of macaroni and add a sprinkling of the Parmesan cheese.
Bake for 20 minutes @ 350 degrees F.
Yield: 6 servings
Old Time Scalloped Tomatoes
This dish has been a family favorite from over 25 years ago when I had a lot of tomatoes at all times. My husband had every variety in large amounts in his garden and I spent a lot of time canning and freezing them for use all through the year.
Old-Time Scalloped Tomatoes
1 Tblsp. oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
One 14-15 oz. can whole peeled tomatoes, drained
One 14-15 oz. can crushed tomatoes
2 Tblsp. butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
Dash of salt and a few grinds of black pepper
2 cups soft bread crumbs
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
In small skillet, heat oil and saute onions on low heat until soft. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper.
In 8×8″ baking pan place tomatoes. Roughly cut up the whole tomatoes. Add the sauteed onions.
In the same skillet used for the onions, melt the butter, stir in brown sugar until dissolved. Add to tomato mixture and stir to blend.
Sprinkle crumbs on top of tomato mixture and bake @ 350 degrees F for approximately 20 minutes until tomatoes are heated through and topping is browned.
Yield: 6 servings
Serve everything piping hot.
The salmon can be made into patties ahead of time and refrigerated until ready to serve. The two side dishes can also be made earlier in the day and then baked at the same time, adding 10 minutes if the dishes are cold.
You may not want to eat this meal 7 weeks in a row but it would make a delicious Good Friday supper.
I wanted to dress up a grilled cheese sandwich and went around the kitchen picking up things – some good homemade raisin bread, Havarti cheese, a small amount of jam left in the jar, a tart apple, and butter. This was definitely a welcome change from the usual cheddar cheese sandwich.
HAVARTI, APPLE AND JAM SANDWICH
For each sandwich:
1 Tblsp. butter, divided
½ Golden Delicious tart apple, sliced 1/4 inch thick
2 slices raisin bread*
1 slice Havarti cheese
1 Tblsp. jam or apple butter
In a small skillet, melt 1 tsp. butter and add apple slices. Cook apples until light brown on each side and fork-tender. Set aside.
*My favorite raisin bread
Wipe out skillet and place on burner over medium heat. Butter a slice of bread, add a slice of cheese and the jam.
Place the apple slices on top of the jam and add the remaining slice of bread, buttered side up.
Place the sandwich in the skillet and brown on each side until cheese is melted.
Makes one delicious sandwich.
I first made these muffins in 1998. I had bought a muffin cookbook to send to my daughter-in-law in St. Louis, but first copied recipes that appealed to me. These muffins are very good, just a tiny bit of sweetness and the flavor of cheddar cheese along with raisins and crunchy nuts. I consider two of these small muffins as a good serving for a breakfast treat. They are also nice to serve along with summer salads.
I have a note in my binder: “January 23, 1998 – This is one of David’s (my husband) favorites. Very good.”
BEER CHEESE MUFFINS
1/2 cup beer
1/2 cup raisins
2 Tblsp. oil
1/3 cup granulated sugar
¾ tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2.5 oz shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup chopped nuts
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
Grease 12 muffin cups or insert paper or silicone liners
In small pan heat beer to boiling. Remove from heat, add raisins and let cool.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg, oil and sugar. Whisk in the soda, nutmeg and salt.
Stir in the beer/raisin mixture and flour. Stir in the cheese and chopped nuts.
Divide the batter between 12 muffin cups and bake in preheated 375 degree F oven for 15 minutes. Muffins should be golden brown on top and a tester inserted in the center of one muffin should come out clean.
Allow muffins to cool in the pan for 7-10 minutes.
Remove muffins from pan or silicone liners and allow to continue cooling on a wire rack.
Yield: 12 small muffins
These muffins are delicious warm from the oven and can be warmed a few seconds in the microwave if necessary.
Tag; cook,cooking,recipe,recipes,baking,quick bread,muffins,beer,cheese,cheddar,nuts,raisins,breakfast,lunch
This recipe is from a favorite cookbook I received as a gift in 1982 – Seasoned with Sunshine, a collection of recipes from Florida. This is a thin, delicious, moist cake that is easy to make. It makes a nice luncheon or supper dessert.
DELICIOUS DATE CAKE
- ½ cup dates, chopped
- 1/2 tsp. soda
- 1/2 cup boiling water
- ¼ cup butter, softened
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- 1/8 tsp salt
Preheat oven @ 350 degrees F. Grease an 8×8 inch pan.
In a small bowl, mix dates, soda and boiling water; set aside to cool.
By hand or in an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar, add egg. Sift flour and salt together and add to creamed mixture. Blend in cooled date mixture with liquid. Pour into well-greased 8×8 pan. Sprinkle on Pecan Topping* ingredients, beginning with brown sugar, then pecans and then the chocolate chips.
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup pecans, chopped
- ½ cup chocolate chips
Bake @ 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
6 servings. Delicious plain ….
… or with ice cream, whipped cream or whipped topping.
This dish for supper incorporated mushrooms and broccoli which needed to be used, roasted chicken breast which I always have in the freezer, and some tasty Asian condiments. I added the dried cranberries and walnuts for extra crunch and color. A very tasty and satisfying meal.
TERIYAKI CHICKEN, VEGETABLES AND RICE
- 1 tsp olive oil
- Large sweet onion, sliced
- 1 cup mushrooms, sliced
- 2 cups broccoli florets, steamed fork tender
- 1 cup cooked chicken breast, shredded
- ½ tsp. sesame oil
- Dash or two of Mongolian Fire Oil (optional)
- 1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
- 2 Tblsp. dried cranberries
- 2 Tblsp. chopped walnuts
- 4 servings of cooked rice
In a large non-stick skillet, heat the olive oil and saute the onion slices over medium heat until translucent.
Add mushroom slices and cook until mushrooms start to soften. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper.
Stir in steamed broccoli, cooked chicken breast, sesame oil, fire oil and teriyaki sauce.
Cook until mixture is hot and serve over cooked rice with a sprinkle of cranberries and walnuts on top.
This dish is adapted from an internet recipe from several years ago. I no longer remember the source, but this makes a delicious light lunch with a lot of different textures and crunch going on. I highly recommend just a light drizzle of sesame oil – the mild, smoky flavor is wonderful.
- 4 burrito size wraps
- 6 oz. cream cheese, divided
- 2 cups cooked chicken breast, shredded
- Sesame oil for drizzling
- 2 green onions, chopped, including green part
- ½ cup red bell pepper, diced
- 8 oz. can of pineapple tidbits, drained*
- 8-10 oz. can of mandarin oranges, drained*
- ½ cup salted cashews
*Save the drained juice for other uses – too good to throw away. I always have a jar in the freezer to save bits of drained juice and just mix it together to use in gelatin desserts.
Place burrito wrap on a flat surface and spread burrito with ¼ of the cream cheese.
Add ½ cup of chicken breast, drizzle lightly with sesame oil. Add ¼ of green onions,
bell pepper, pineapple, oranges
and salted cashews.
Fold top and bottom of wrap, roll from one side to make a tight roll.
Cover with plastic wrap. Repeat with remaining three wraps. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
When ready to serve, remove plastic wrap, place burrito on plate and cut in half on diagonal.
When I was getting ready to fix lunch today, I found three containers of leftovers – steamed cauliflower, mashed potatoes and some carrots from our Sunday roast beef dinner. I decided to use everything up and make a cauliflower soup which had a great flavor and was thick and substantial. It made a nice lunch along with a warm roll on a chilly November day.
CREAMY CAULIFLOWER SOUP
- 3 slices bacon
- ½ cup chopped onion
- ¾ cup chicken broth
- 1 Tblsp. all-purpose flour
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup mashed potatoes
- 2 cups steamed cauliflower, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1 cup cooked baby carrots, cut into slices
- Salt/pepper to taste
In a large pan over medium-low heat, cook the bacon until crisp.
Remove bacon to drain on a paper towel. In the bacon grease, brown the chopped onion until soft. Add the chicken broth. Turn up heat to medium-high.
In a small cup, mix together the milk and flour; add to broth mixture. Add the mashed potatoes and stir or whisk until smooth. Stir in the cauliflower and carrots. Continue to cook over medium-high heat until bubbly and hot, stirring occasionally.
Place soup in bowls and sprinkle with reserved bacon which has been crumbled.
Makes 3 to 4 servings.
This recipe is adapted from one in a beautiful Crabtree & Evelyn (England) cookbook. It was originally an appetizer recipe and I added a favorite sauce to the pesto to make a very flavorful topping for pasta.
TORTELLINI WITH CILANTRO PESTO
Sauce can be made in advance. Refrigerate and warm over low heat before serving.
- ¼ cup dry roasted peanuts
- 1 cup packed flat-leaf parsley leaves
- ¾ cup packed fresh cilantro leaves
- ¼ cup light olive oil
- 2 Tblsp. red-wine vinegar
- Salt/pepper to taste
In food processor, pulse peanuts, then add parsley and cilantro and pulse to produce coarse paste. With motor on, drizzle oil and vinegar through feed tube. Add salt/pepper and process briefly to blend. Set aside.
- 2 Tblsp. butter
- 2 Tblsp. olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/3 cup white wine
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- Freshly ground pepper
Melt butter in oil, saute garlic briefly. Add wine, boil gently 2-3 minutes. Stir in lemon juice and pepper. Stir the pesto into the sauce. Sauce should be hot when served.
1 to 1-¼ lbs. fresh cheese tortellini
Bring large pot of salted water to a boil. Add 1 Tblsp. olive oil and tortellini to boiling water and cook until pasta is tender – al dente, stirring occasionally.
Drain pasta (do not rinse) and place in a large bowl. Place sauce in a small container and let each person spoon sauce over a serving of pasta. Top with grated parmesan cheese and serve with some good bread. I made a quick and easy batter loaf and cut into wedges for sopping up the good sauce. Click here for the bread recipe.
Servings: 4 to 6