Thursday, June 26, 2008

Summer Eatin'

Big Mama is hosting a "what in the world can we cook in the summer that does not require lots of prep or cooking in the heat besides hot dogs ideafest!" Well, she might not be calling it exactly that, but that's the gist of it! My favorite thing in the summer is a quick, easy pasta salad, a great salsa with fresh tomatoes and an easy dessert ~ just to name a few. Don't know if Caroline or P will eat this ~ but there's always more hot dogs!!!

Two of my favorites pasta salads are:

Shrimp Pasta Salad:
1-2 bags baby shrimp (frozen, put in colander and run cold water over to thaw)
sm. box tri-color rotini or bowtie pasta
cheddar cheese cubes (the new Kraft crumbles are great)
salt and pepper to taste
add a few scallions if you like them
toss all together with enough mayonnaise to coat
Serve with a loaf of french bread

Easy Pasta Salad:
28 oz. cheese tortellini (fresh)
2 sm. jars artichoke hearts
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 cucumber, chopped
1 sm. can sliced black olives
one bottle Girards Light Caesar Dressing
Mix together and let sit a while to marinate if possible

The easiest pasta salad is just picking out what you like. Pick your pasta (tri-color, bowtie, penne, etc) and toss in whatever you and your family like. (Broccoli, artichokes (canned), grilled chicken, cucumbers, carrots, black olives, onion, spinach, bell pepper, mandarin oranges, almonds) The best dressing I've found is Kraft Creamy Italian or Girards Light Ceasar. Simple, cold and stores well.

Monterrey Jack Salsa (watch out, it's addictive)
1 can green chilies (chopped)
1 can black olives (chopped)
4 green onions (chopped)
*1 pkg. shredded Monterrey Jack Cheese
1-2 tomatoes (chopped) more if desired
½ cup Italian Salad dressing
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (more or less to taste)
juice from one fresh lemon and lime
Blend all ingredients and serve with tortilla chips. *Better with Monterrey Jack/Colby shredded cheese). If serving just a little at a time, add cheese as served.

Orange Fluff Dessert (or side salad)
1 small carton creamed cottage cheese
1 large carton cool whip
1 large can pineapple chunks - drained
1 can mandarin oranges
1 small package orange jello - dry
Mix all ingredients in order listed and chill. This can be put in a graham cracker crust for a pie of sorts. And I promise the cottage cheese does not make it gross.

1 comment:

Jenn said...

whatever Panera makes that's cheap and easy. LOL!!