Friday, November 30, 2012

Summers by the pool

Jamaican Hibisus drink

This popular Jamaican drink may be served with or without rum. Plan ahead for steeping time.

8 cups water
2 cups dried hibiscus blossoms (Find in Jamaican or Mexican markets; sometimes called sorrel blossoms)
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1 cup sugar, or to taste
Jamaican rum (optional)

In a 4 quart stainless steel or glass pot, bring the water to a boil. Add the hibiscus and ginger. Turn off the heat, then cover and steep for 4 hours. Strain and sweeten with sugar to taste. Chill and serve, or serve with good rum, the amount according to your taste.

Yield: 2 quarts

No bake peanut butter bars

Truly a great warm weather dessert as there is no baking

2 cups peanut butter,divided
3/4 cup(1 1/2 sticks of butter), sofened
2 cups powdered sugar, divided
3 cups graham cracker crumbs
2 cups (12 -ounce package) semi sweet chocolate chips, divided

Grease 13x9 inch baking pan
Beat 1 1/4 cup peanut butter and butter in large bowl until creamy
Gradually beat in 1 cup powdered sugar.
With hands or wooden spoon,work remaining powdered sugar, graham cracker crumbs and 1/2 cups chocolate chips.
Press evenly into prepared pan.
smooth top with spatula
Melt remaining peanut butter and remaining chocolate chips in saucepan over low heat stirring constantly,until smooth.
Spread over graham cracker crust in pan.
Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or until chocolate is firm;cut into bars. Store in refrigerator.

Fresh Sytrawberry pie

Fresh strawberries are one of summer’s sweetest treats. This beautiful, easy-to-make dessert displays sweet whole berries in a shiny fruit glaze inside a crisp crust

Single crust for a 9-inch pie
1 quart fresh strawberries
3/4 cup water
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 of a 3-ounce package strawberry gelatin
2 tablespoons cornstarch

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Fit the pie crust into a 9-inch pie pan and flute the edges. Bake the pie crust for about 10 minutes, or until golden and crispy.
Wash and dry the strawberries. Hull them but leave the berries whole. Set aside.
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, whisk the water, sugar, gelatin, and cornstarch.
Cook, stirring, for about 10 minutes over medium heat, until the mixture thickens slightly. Set the saucepan aside so the mixture can cool.
Arrange the strawberries in the pie crust, beginning in the center with the largest berries and filling in with smaller berries as you move toward the edges. Fit berries in as you see fit so that the entire crust is covered with berries. Carefully pour the cooled gelatin mixture over the pie.
Cover the pie with plastic wrap and chill 4 hours.
You can vary the flavor of this pie by substituting raspberries or blueberries for some of the strawberries. You can also use a different flavor of gelatin. Cherry or raspberry also pick up the flavor of the berries.
This pie must be made at least a few hours in advance to give it time to chill, so it’s a good choice for a dessert for a special dinner as there is absolutely no last minute preparation. You can make the pie a day ahead and chill for up to 24 hours before serving.

Strawberry Dessert

This was one of my mothers favorite summer recipes. I took this as one of the dishes to "Summer Solstice 2009".

1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup chopped pecans
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
2 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 (12 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 1/2 quarts fresh strawberries, halved
1 (8 ounce) jar ready-to-use strawberry glaze

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix the butter, flour, and pecans in a bowl, and press into a 9x13 inch baking dish. Bake 10 to 15 minutes; do not allow to brown. Set aside until completely cool. In a bowl, mix the cream cheese and confectioners' sugar until smooth. Blend in the whipped topping. Spread over the cooled crust. Refrigerate 8 hours, or overnight. Top with strawberries and drizzle with glaze to serve.

Calypso grillled pineapple

When you are ready to throw these pineapple slices on the grill, let
everyone gather round while a good flame is going. When the rum hits the
fire it will flare-up, so keep your eyebrows out of range and let
everyone be awed by your grilling prowess as the flames shoot up as you
prepare this grilled dessert.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes

1 pineapple cored and cut into 8 wedges
1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup dark rum
Vanilla ice cream

Combine Worcestershire sauce, honey, butter, sugar and rum in a medium
saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat and simmer
for about 10 minutes or until it begins to thicken. Remove from heat and
allow to cool. Preheat and oil grill. Brush pineapple pieces with sauce
and place on grill. Cook for about 5 minutes turning occasionally.
Surface of the pineapple should brown. Remove from grill, top with ice
cream and remaining sauce.

Santa Fe Pasta Salad

1 16-ounce package bowtie pasta
4-5 quarts water
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup cooked yellow corn kernels
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup chopped green onion
2 tablespoons diced red bell pepper
2 tablespoons diced green bell pepper
1 chicken breast fillet, cooked and diced
1 1/4 cups V-8 juice
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
3/4 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Prepare the pasta by bringing 4-5 quarts of water to a rolling
boil in a large saucepan. Add pasta to the pan, and
when water
begins to boil again, cook for 8-11 minutes. Pasta should be
al dente, or mostly tender but with a slight toughness in the
middle. Whisk all of the dressing ingredients together in a
small bowl. Cover and chill the dressing until you're ready to
use it. When pasta is done, pour it into a large bowl. Add the
dressing, then toss. Add the remaining ingredients to the
pasta, and toss until combined. Cover and chill for several
hours before serving.

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