Thursday, May 21, 2009

Hot weather cooking, or cooking for the lazy

Looking at the weather forecast, it is supposed to be HOT this weekend. Good for the garden, good for the animals, not so great for those of us stuck in the kitchen. Plus, it's a holiday weekend, and I don't want to be stuck in the kitchen.

Time for a preventive strike. My solution to this problem? Make up some salads and throw 'em in the fridge. I made a nice Greek salad last night (tons of veggies), this morning, before it gets too hot, I am making two types of potato salad, a macaroni salad, egg salad, and a bacon pea salad. Why so many? Can you tell my family is picky? The more choices, the more likely they won't get too tired of any one of them. For my family, it's better to make two different types in smaller amounts, than one big one. It doesn't take a huge amount of additional time, and you are already working with most the same ingredients.

This way, when the kids come in and say they are starved, I can tell them to have some salad, plus throw a hot dog in the microwave, and there's a meal! No mom-guilt.

I'll even shoot a great recipe your way! My lovely mother-in-law taught me this recipe, and it's super yummy.

German Potato Salad

A few pounds of potato's, boiled, peeled and cubed
One yellow onion
One pound of bacon
Mayonnaise (cannot be Miracle Whip)
Salt and pepper to taste

Make up the potato's. While they are cooking, Fry up the bacon. Work in smaller batches, pouring off grease as needed (I save the grease for other cooking). Do not disturb the browning's! Once all the bacon is crispy, pour off nearly all of the excess grease, and cool the pan slightly. While the pan is cooling, break the bacon into smaller pieces, and dice the onion. While the bacon pan is still slightly warm, add a cup or more of mayo to the pan. Stir firmly to scrape off all the browning's off the bottom of the pan, making sure the browning's are well incorporated to the mayo.
Combine the potato's, onion and bacon in a large bowl. Taste the dressing, add salt and pepper to taste (remember that the bacon is smoky and salty, but that the potato's will absorb a lot of salt. So it needs to be to taste.), and carefully fold in the dressing over the potato mixture.

Place in the fridge, and let stand for a few hours (a day is better!) before eating.


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