Memorial Day is right around the corner. If you are like me, you are looking quite forward to this day. I have always thought of this holiday as the commencement of the summer season. Parades will take place in most neighborhoods to show respect for those who have served our country, local swimming pools will open, and every other neighbor on your block will have a cookout. Below I have compiled a list of some my favorite Memorial Day recipes
Mom’s Potato Salad– Ever since I was a kid this recipe has been one of my favorite side dishes. My mom would always make it for family parties and I was always the guinea pig who got to do the taste testing.
Ingredients: Hellman’s mayonnaise, yellow mustard, russet potatoes, sugar, eggs, salt, and celery.
Directions: You must peel, cut into chunks, and cook your potatoes first. (How many potatoes you cook depends on the amount of people that will be at the picnic but my Mom always made about 10) Take half of a large celery stalk and cut and dice it, finely. Once, the potatoes are cooked -place in a large serving bowl with the celery- and add 2 tablespoons of the mayonnaise. Begin to mix the mayonnaise with the potatoes. Add a pinch of salt, a teaspoon of sugar, and a teaspoon of mustard. Begin to mix these ingredients together. Once everything is thoroughly mixed through add 1 tablespoon of mayonnaise and another pinch (or 2) of salt. Mix through, taste test, and enjoy!
Red Pepper Jelly Dip- This is an incredible yet easy recipe that my fiance loves to make.
Ingredients: At your local supermarket or specialty foods store ask for a jar of medium red pepper jelly. Please, note that you can get hot but it adds a few extra punches to the taste buds. Then, get 1 block of cream cheese.
Directions: Take the cream cheese out of the package and add to the serving plate. Open the red pepper jelly and pour over the block of cream cheese. Seriously, how easy is this? Serve with whole grain crackers.
Greek Pita Dip– This is a new recipe that I just started making but it has turned into a big hit!
Ingredients: 16 ounces of sour cream, handful of pitted Greek olives, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 5 oz of crumbled feta cheese, 8 ounces of diced red peppers, and one package of dry Greek seasoning.
Directions: Take 16 ounces of sour cream and pour into a mixing bowl. Add one packet of dry Greek seasoning and mix with sour cream until, thoroughly, combined. Take the crumbled feta cheese, olive oil, diced red peppers and add to the dip by mixing through. Lastly, take your pitted Greek olives and slice into tiny pieces. Add the olives to the dip and mix. Serve with pita crackers.
Isaly’s Ham Barbecue: I grew up in Pittsburgh and one of our staple cookout recipes are Isaly’s Ham Barbecue. They are absolutely delicious!
Ingredients: 16 ounces of Isaly’s regular ham barbecue sauce and 1 pound of chipped chopped ham.
Directions: Combine ingredients in a crock pot or stove top and cook on low until hot throughout. Eat this with a fork or on a hamburger bun.
Paula Deen’s Pretzel Jell-O Salad: What list would be complete without some mention of dessert? I have a huge sweet tooth so this is, probably, my first favorite dish on the list.
Ingredients: 2 cups crushed pretzel, ¾ cup melted butter, 3 tablespoons sugar plus ¾ cup sugar, one 8 ounce container of whipped toppings, one 8 ounce package of cream cheese, 2 packages strawberry gelatin dessert mix, 2 cups boiling water, Two 10 ounce packages of frozen strawberries, and one 8 ounce can of crushed pineapple (I have never had it with this added but sure it is very good)
Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. For the Crust, mix the pretzels, butter, and 3 tablespoons of sugar. Press this mixture into a 9 by 13- inch pan and bake for 7 minutes. In a mixing bowl beat together the cream cheese and ¾ cup of sugar. Fold in the whipped topping and spread over the cooled crust. Refrigerate until well chilled. In a separate small bowl dissolve the gelatin in boiling water and allow to chill, slightly. Add the strawberries and pour over the cream cheese mixture. Refrigerate for 2 hours before serving time and then cut into square pieces.