20 November 2012

Traditional Thanksgiving Dishes

Each year for Thanksgiving we have turkey -- Michael makes the turkey whenever we're hosting.  I like turkey fine, but just a few pieces are enough for me (although I'm liking turkey more in recent years, now that I've been introduced to cranberry sauce).  And we like lots of the traditional sides -- potatoes (either mashed or "funeral potatoes," stuffing (I love Stove Top stuffing), and pumpkin pie is a favorite.  But what I look forward to the most are the three salads that I make each year.  We always had them growing up in my house, and it makes it even better that one recipe is from my mom, one is from Mamaw, my great grandma on my mom's side, and one is from Grandma Moore, my great grandma on my dad's side.  So I thought I'd share these three special recipes:

My all-time favorite Thanksgiving food (I quadruple the recipe so we can have leftovers for at least a week or two after serving lots with Thanksgiving dinner) is Grandma Moore's "Frosted Salad" (or "7-Up Salad").  I would make this more often, except the recipe is slightly involved, just because you have to make part of it, let it set, make another part, let it set, etc.  I guess it's not that involved, just takes some time to wait for the layers to set up in the fridge.  Plus, I guess if we had it all the time it wouldn't be very special when we got it on Thanksgiving.  [Oh, and this recipe calls for 2 large bananas, but the bananas are one of my favorite parts, so I double that and use 4.]

Frosted Salad
2 (3 oz) pkgs lemon Jell-O
2 C water, boiling
1 (13 1/2 oz) can pineapple tidbits (save the juice)
2 scant C 7-Up
2 C miniature marshmallows
2 large bananas [I use 4]
1/2 C sugar
2 T flour
1 C pineapple juice
1 egg, slightly beaten
2 T butter
1 pkg Dream Whip, beaten with 1/2 C milk
1 pinch of salt
Parmesan cheese
Salad: Drain pineapple.  Save juice.  Dissolve Jell-O in boiling water.  Cool.  Stir 7-Up into cooled Jell-O.  Chill until partially set.  Stir in drained pineapple, bananas, and marshmallows.
Topping: Heat pineapple juice in top of double boiler [I don't have a double boiler, so I just always used a pan -- just make sure to stir constantly, it's not very good if it sticks to the bottom or burns].  Combine sugar and flour with beaten egg.  Stir slowly into hot pineapple juice.  Cook until thick, stirring constantly.  Add butter.  Cool and mix with Dream Whip.  Spread topping over set Jell-O mix.  Top with a little parmesan cheese.  
     Recipe From:
Avagail Moore, Amy Chidester

And Mamaw's "24-Hour Salad" is always a favorite -- kids love it, and it's really easy to make up a large batch of it, (and quite inexpensive compared to some fruit salads, since it doesn't require any fresh fruit).  The only thing is that you can't wait until the day of to make it -- it has to be made at least 24 hours before you want to eat it, in order to give the flavors time to mix together, otherwise it will taste like mayo, which isn't very tasty   But when you make it a day or two in advance it is easy.  We always use our largest mixing bowl and triple this recipe.  [When you triple it, it takes about one 10 oz bag of mini marshmallows, and a 24 oz container of sour cream.]  In the notes of the recipe there are also instructions to use the fruit juice to make slushie drink.  I remember doing that as a kid, but haven't done it the last few years.

24-Hour Salad
1 large can fruit cocktail
1 (13 oz) can pineapple chunks
1 can mandarin oranges
1 container sour cream
2 C miniature marshmallows
2 T mayonnaise
Note: You can save the juice that you drain from the cans of fruit, strain it through a colander, and freeze it in a round cake pan.  Once the "slush" is frozen, cut out pieces of it and add to 7-Up to drink.
Directions: Drain juice from fruit cans and save (see note above).  Mix all ingredients well.  Refrigerate overnight.  (If you don't refrigerate it long enough, the mayonnaise taste will be too strong).  Serve cooled.
Recipe From: Frances Monk, Amy Chidester


And then there's my Mom's Layered Onion Salad.  My mom always made this growing up, and I just assumed she made up the recipe herself, but I guess I never asked her if she did or if she got the recipe from someone else.  She always served it in a really pretty clear crystally-looking salad bowl, which was nice because you could see all the layers of the salad from the outside of the bowl.  This salad taste even better the next day.

Layered Onion Salad
1 large red onion
1 med head iceberg lettuce, broken into chunks
3/4 C mayonnaise
2 t sugar
1/2 t salt
1/8 t pepper
1 (10 oz) pkg frozen peas, thawed
1 C swiss cheese, grated
3 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
Slice onion very thinly.  Separate into rings.  Place 1/2 lettuce in salad bowl.  Spoon 1/2 mayonnaise over lettuce.  Add a layer of onion and sprinkle with 1/2 sugar, salt, and pepper.  Top with 1/2 peas and cheese.  Repeat layers.  Refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours before serving.  Garnish with crumbled bacon and onion rings.
Recipe From:
Amy Chidester

1 comment:

Michelle said...

These sound really yummy. We will probably make our favorite ambrosia salad. Lucas mixes a little of the crushed pineapple juice with pistachio pudding mix and the adds drained fruit cocktail and whipped cream. We used to use whipped topping or cool whip but it tastes better with real whipped cream.

I would love to see pictures of the finished recipe. I hope you take some pictures before you eat it all up.