Let’s hear it for the red, white and blue. Independence Day is a time to remember who we are as a country and where we came from. It’s time to celebrate with parades, fireworks, marching bands, family and picnics.
What could be more appropriate for a holiday meal than a red, white and blue picnic? Get out the red checkered tablecloth and set out a mix of red and blue plates, cups and utensils with white napkins to finish the color combination and plan a meal using patriotic colors.
You may be limited on food choices in keeping with the color theme. Not all your foods are likely to be red, white and blue unless you are into food coloring. (Who wants a blue bun for your hamburger anyway?), but what cannot can be served on colorful dishes. Blue potatoes taste like white ones and could make a potato salad flavored like the ones you like.
At any rate there are some red, white and blue surprises that will look appealing and taste delicious. Blueberries tend to star in these presentations.
Strawberry Surprise Salad
(Makes 12 to 15 servings)
3/4 cup margarine, melted
2 1/2 cups crushed pretzels
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 large package strawberry gelatin
3 cups chopped chilled strawberries
1 cup sugar
1 8 ounce package cream cheese, softened
1 small container whipped topping
Blueberries for garnish
Canned whipped topping for garnish
Combine margarine, pretzels and brown sugar in a bowl and mix well. Press into the bottom of a lightly buttered baking dish. Bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Cool.
Dissolve gelatin in 2 cups boiling water. Cool slightly. Stir in strawberries. Chill until partially set.
Cream sugar and cream cheese and then fold in whipped topping. Spread over pretzel crust. Spoon thickened gelatin mixture over the cream cheese layer. Chill until set.
Garnish with a dollop of whipped topping and a few blueberries then serve.
American Flag Cake
Cake mix flavor of your choice
Cherries or strawberries
Mix cake according to package directions and bake in a dripper pan or jelly roll pan. Cool thoroughly.
Spread cake with whipped topping. Place 50 blueberries in upper left corner of cake pan in nine horizontal rows. The top row should have six berries; the second will have five, the third six, the fourth five and so on. The bottom row will have six berries.
Place strawberries rows on the top and bottom edges of the cake and then make 5 more rows of berries leaving whipped topping white stripes between them. To be totally authentic, you should have four red stripes that end at the blueberries and three that extend the length of the cake below the blueberry field.
1 cup flour
1 cube butter or margarine
1/2 cup powdered sugar
Mix together all ingredients and press into cupcake tins. For a fancier look, roll dough out thin and cut with a large fluted cutter and lay in cupcake tins pressing around sides. Bake at 400 degrees until light golden brown – about 7 to 10 minutes.
No-cook cheesecake filling:
1 8-ounce package cream cheese at room temperature
1 8-ounce carton cool whip
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Blend cream cheese, sour cream, sugar and vanilla together and mix until there are no lumps. Fold into cool whip. Place in tart shells and chill until firm.
Fresh strawberries or raspberries
Canned whipped topping or other
Red food coloring
Strawberry or raspberry ice cream topping
Place coconut in jar with a few drops of red food coloring and shake to color.
Drizzle plate with ice cream topping. Top half of tart with strawberries and the other half with blueberries. Top with a dollop of whipped topping and sprinkling of colored coconut.
1 recipe brownies baked as instructed below
1 small bottle raspberry jam
White chocolate melted and poured to cool in a thin layer
Fresh strawberries or fresh raspberries
1 envelope gelatin
1/4 cup cold water
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1 1/4 cups milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups frozen whipped topping, thawed.
Make brownies using mix or a favorite recipe. Spread over jelly roll pan and bake as instructed until done.
Top with thin layer of raspberry jam.
Make mouse as follows: In a small saucepan sprinkle gelatin over cold water and let stand one minute. Stir over low heat until gelatin is completely dissolved. Stir in butter until melted.
Blend milk, sugar, cocoa powder, and vanilla in blender or food processer until blended. Pour into bowl then blend in whipped topping. Spread over cooled brownie topped with jam. Chill until firm.
Break white chocolate into large pieces. Stand pieces over top of mousse so that each slice will have some on top. Serve with raspberries or strawberries and blueberries laid along side of the mousse.
1 large can fruit cocktail, drained
1 package colored miniature marshmallows
1 12-ounce cartons small curd cottage cheese
1 4-ounce package finely chopped pecans
1 8-ounce carton sour cream
1 small can crushed pineapple, drained
1 cup coconut
Combine all ingredients in a bowl mixing well
Garnish with cherries or strawberries and blueberries
Banana-blueberry cream pie
(Makes 12 to 14 servings)
3 bananas, sliced
2 baked 9-inch pie shells
1 cup sugar
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
1 large carton whipped topping
1 can blueberry pie filling
Cream sugar and cream cheese in a bowl until smooth and fold in whipped topping.
Slice bananas into pie shells. Spread cream cheese/topping mixture over bananas. Top with pie filling and chill until serving time.
Garnish each slice with a fresh strawberry, raspberry or cherry and serve.