Prather: Summer a prime time for vegetable salads

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Diane Prather

About a week ago, I had a pleasant phone visit with Craig resident Mary Matlock, and then she sent me two recipes. (Readers can look forward to reading them in an upcoming column.)

Mary made “Pea-Nutty Salad,” which was featured in this column recently, and she said everyone liked it.

So, this week, while browsing through my files, I found a similar recipe to “Pea-Nutty Salad.” This one has peas and peanuts in its ingredients, but some not in the “Pea-Nutty Salad.” I have not taken the time to make this new recipe yet, but you might like it.

“Crunchy Pea Salad” is made with the following: 2 cups of cooked spiral pasta; 2 hardboiled eggs (diced); a 10-ounce package of frozen peas (thawed); an 8-ounce can water chestnuts (drained); 1 cup celery (diced); ½ cup finely sliced green onions; ½ cup cheddar cheese; ¾ cup salted peanuts; salt and pepper (to taste); and Zesty Italian dressing.

Note: I’ll bet that you could use other kinds of pasta.

Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl. Mix well. Chill and serve.

When I was a girl growing up on the ranch, my mother canned lots of vegetables.

When she canned, she always took pains to make sure that the jar lids sealed. But, nonetheless, she taught us to boil the vegetables for a good amount of time (I think about 20 minutes). This was to guard against botulism.

I have remembered her warning to this day. Although I’m sure “storebought” vegetables in the can are processed correctly, I boil these vegetables for awhile, too, though not for 20 minutes.

So, I think about Mom’s making sure vegetables were boiled when I read the ingredients of the following salad recipe.

“Green Bean Salad” takes: 3 cans of French style green beans (drained); ½ cup onion (finely chopped); 1 pint of sour cream; 1 package Hidden Valley Ranch dressing; and 1 tablespoon dill weed.

Mix the sour cream with the Hidden Valley Ranch packet and dill weed. Then mix this sour cream mixture with the green beans and onions. Chill.

I’m sure that it is safe to use the green beans without cooking them, but my mother’s warning would have me cooking and then cooling them before making the salad.

The origins of this week’s recipes are unknown. I have not made the “Green Bean Salad” recipe yet, either. If you make these salads, let me know how they turn out. And, thanks to Mary for sending her recipes.

I have some rhubarb recipes to try out, hopefully soon, and then I’ll share them with you. Please send your recipes to me at Box 415, Craig 81626, or call me at 824-8809.

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