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Holiday weekend favorites

Our attention turns in many special ways during the busy month of May. From celebrating Mother’s Day, graduations, weddings, anniversaries, the end of another school year and Memorial Day, we also are celebrating the special gift of the birth of our first beautiful granddaughter Ella Leigh, who was born on May 11, to our son Tim and his wife Lisa. Memorial Day ushers in summer and marks the beginning of a long and wonderful season. This week I would like to share with you a few picnic favorites that we will be enjoying over the holiday weekend.

Different Layered Salad

Serving size: 16

4 cups mixed salad greens

2 large tomatoes, cut into wedges

1/2 bottle Italian dressing

1 1/2 cups mayonnaise

10 ounce package thawed frozen green


7 ounce package or 2 cups macaroni,

cooked and drained

8 ounce package shredded cheddar


2 cans shrimp, drained

4 cups shredded cabbage

In a large bowl, layer greens, cooked and drained macaroni, 1-1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, tomatoes, shrimp, peas and cabbage. Combine mayonnaise and Italian dressing and pour over salad. Top with remaining cheese. Cover and refrigerate for several hours. Salad can be tossed before serving. Garnish with additional tomato wedges.

Grilled Mushroom Swiss Burger

Serving size: 6

2 tablespoons butter

1 package (8 ounces) sliced fresh mush


3 tablespoons soy sauce

3 large garlic cloves, sliced or finely


1 1/2 pound lean (at least 80%) ground


1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

6 slices Swiss cheese

6 burger buns, split

2 medium tomatoes, sliced

1 medium onion, sliced

Heat gas or charcoal grill to medium heat. In 12-inch nonstick skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, soy sauce and garlic; cook until mushrooms are tender and liquid evaporates. Set aside; keep warm. Shape beef into six (1/2 inch thick) patties. Sprinkle with garlic powder, salt and pepper. Place patties on grill; cover grill. Cook with medium heat eight to 10 minutes, turning once, until meat thermometer inserted in center of

patties reads 160°F. Place cheese slices on top of burgers; cover and cook one to two minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Place burgers in buns. Divide cooked mushrooms evenly over burgers. Top with tomatoes and onion.

Angel Food Strawberry Dessert

1 angel food cake, torn into bite-size


1 pint strawberries, cut into large pieces

1 large package strawberry gelatin (I use

sugar free)

1 carton Cool Whip

Prepare gelatin in a rectangular dish (at least 7- by-12-inch) according to directions and cool until just starting to gel. Add angel food cake, making sure that it all gets thoroughly coated. Then immediately mix in strawberries. Continue cooling/gelling process until firm. Top with Cool Whip.

GARY’S TIP: You can make your own sweet onions by peeling an onion, cover with ice water and add 1 ½ tablespoons of sugar. Refrigerate overnight in a covered container.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: A picture is a poem without words.