Summer days are approaching, so it’s time to ditch the warm baked menus and substitute fresh mealtime salads, quick skillets and seasonal fruit such as strawberries and rhubarb.
Enjoy the seasonal tastes.
Strawberries and Cream Cupcakes
- 1 angel food cake mix
- 1 1/4 c. cold water 300 mL
- 3 c. fresh strawberries 750 mL
- 125 g cream cheese, softened 125 g
- 2 tbsp. sugar 30 mL
- 1 tbsp. orange juice (use amaretto liqueur, if desired) 15 mL
- 1 1/2 c. whipped topping 375 mL
Heat oven to 375 F (190 C). Prepare the baking pans by putting a muffin liner in each muffin cup. In a large mixing bowl, beat the angel food cake mix and water with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds. Beat on medium speed for one minute. Pour batter into muffin cups, filling each 3/4 full.
Bake 12 to 20 minutes or until cupcakes are golden brown and cracks on top feel dry. Remove from muffin tins to cooling rack.
In a bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar and juice until well blended. Add whipped topping or cream, fold together gently until mixed. Refrigerate.
Put a spoonful of the cream mixture on each cupcake and arrange the strawberries on the cupcakes just before serving. Any seasonal fresh fruit can be used.
Strawberry variation: omit the cupcakes and just serve the berries stuffed with the creamed mixture.
Cut the tops off of the strawberries and stand upright on the cut side. Make two cuts with a paring knife in an X pattern about three-quarters of the way down from the tip of the strawberry toward the bottom. Open gently and fill gently with cream.
Use either a small spoon or pipe the cream through a bag.
Note: Filling the berries is much easier if the cream is cool. Grate chocolate over top if desired.
Rhubarb Oatmeal Cookies
Fresh rhubarb is something eagerly anticipated each spring.
- 1 c. butter/margarine 250 mL
- 1 1/2 c. packed brown sugar 375 mL
- 2 eggs
- 3 c. flour 750 mL
- 1 tsp. baking soda 5 mL
- 1/2 tsp. salt 2 mL
- 1 1/2 c. chopped fresh rhubarb 375 mL
- 1/2 c. oats 125 mL
- 1/2 c. chopped pecans, optional 125 mL
- 1 c. brown sugar 250 mL
- 2 tsp. cinnamon 10 mL
- 1 tsp. nutmeg 5 mL
Preheat oven to 375. Prepare a baking sheet. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
Beat in eggs. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt, then add to creamed mixture and mix well. Fold in the rhubarb, oats and pecans if desired.
In a bowl, mix together the topping ingredients. Drop the dough onto a baking sheet and sprinkle each cookie with topping. Bake for approximately 10 minutes or until browned.
Adapted from www.tasteofhome.com.
- 1/3 c. oil 75 mL
- 1 1/2 c. sugar 375 mL
- 1 tsp. vanilla 5 mL
- 1 egg
- 1 c. sour milk 250 mL
- 1 tsp. baking soda 5 mL
- 2 c. flour 500 mL
- 2 c. fresh rhubarb, cut fine 500 mL
- 3/4 c. brown sugar 175 mL
- 1 tsp. cinnamon 5 mL
Preheat oven to 375 F (190 C). Prepare muffin tins.
Mix oil and sugar, add vanilla, egg and sour milk. In a mixing bowl, combine the flour and soda, add to sugar mixture and stir until combined.
Fold in rhubarb and pour into muffin pans, filling about one-half full. Mix topping and sprinkle over the top of the batter. Bake in heated oven for 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Chicken and Asparagus Stir Fry
- 1/2 c. catalina dressing 125 mL
- 3 tbsp. soy sauce 45 mL
- 4 chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
- 10 to 15 asparagus spears
- 1 large red pepper, cut into thin strips
- 6 green onions, finely chopped
- cooked rice
Mix the dressing and soy sauce in a large skillet over medium heat. Once heated, place the chicken in the skillet, cooking for five minutes. Add the asparagus and pepper, stir fry for an additional five minutes or until done.
Top with the chopped green onions and spoon over rice.
Note: If desired, substitute other vegetables and swap the chicken for sirloin strips of beef.
This catalina recipe is sure to please.
- 1/4 c. ketchup 60 mL
- 1/4 c. sugar 60 mL
- 1/4 c. red wine vinegar 60 mL
- 1/4 c. onion finely chopped 60 mL
- 1/2 tsp. paprika 2 mL
- 1/4 tsp. Worcestershire sauce 1 mL
- 1/2 c. oil 125 mL
- salt and pepper to taste
Combine ingredients in a blender or mixer.
Put in a sealed container and store in the refrigerator. – Source: www.melskitchencafe.com.
Zesty Chicken Mealtime Salad
For busy or hot days, pick up a roasted rotisserie chicken from the store to make this filling but nutritious meal.
- 3 c. diced rotisserie chicken 750 mL
- 1 head of romaine lettuce, washed and torn
- 1 yellow pepper
- 1 small red onion
- 1 c. canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained 250 mL
- 5 to 6 cherry tomatoes
- half of a long English cucumber
- 10 rinsed baby corn
- bacon bits, croutons and shredded cheese, optional
Mix ingredients and use catalina, ranch, honey mustard or a vinaigrette for the dressing. Top with bacon bits, croutons and shredded cheese.
Jodie Mirosovsky is a home economist from Rosetown, Sask., and a member of Team Resources. Contact: [email protected].