Monday, April 23, 2007

Garden Party

Get out your prettiest garden hat and join me for a Garden Party. With the weather having been so nice this past week in Texas, I would have loved to have gone to a garden party or a picnic. When I was a little girl, I grew up in the country with my grandmother, my great aunt and uncle, and they were always planning a picnic when I was with them. My aunt would make tuna or pimento cheese sandwiches wrapped in wax paper (oh what memories), homemade bread and butter pickles, chips, and sweet tea in a jug for us to have plenty of. We would head out for an afternoon of fishing down by the pond at the back of their land. Either my aunt or grandmother would make sugar cookies (or tea cakes as my aunt would call them). I thought I'd share some of favorite recipes for you to make at your next garden party or picnic, as well as the flowers in my garden.

Cold Cherry Soup

(if you're not into cold soup, this is so good, it's almost like a dessert)

1 quart cherries pitted
3/4 c. sugar
3 tablespoons kirsch
1 c. plus 3 cups buttermilk and
2/3 c. sour cream
fresh mint springs
PROCESS cherries, 1 c. buttermilk, and sugar in a food processor. Set aside. COMBINE remaining 3 c. buttermilk, sour cream, and kirsch in a large bow. POUR the cherry mixture into the sour cream mixture. STIR to combine, COVER, and chill. SERVE chilled with mint sprigs.

All American Chicken Pasta Salad

2 c. chicken breasts, shredded
3/4 c. cubed zucchini
1/2 c. thinly chopped celery
1/2 c. mayonnaise
4 1/2 t. dried basil
3/4 t. salt
1/2 c. sour cream
1 1/2 t. lemon juice
1/2 lb. rotelle pasta (spinach, tomato & egg)
1 t. dried oregano;
1/8 t. black pepper ; and
2 T. chopped fresh parsley for garnish

SHRED chicken and set aside. IN A LARGE POT of lightly salted boiling water, cook the pasta al dente. DRAIN and rinse well with hot water. Let cool. IN A LARGE BOWL, combine the chicken, pasta, zucchini, tomatoes, and celery. IN ANOTHER BOWL, combine the sour cream, mayonnaise, lemon juice, basil, oregano, salt, and pepper. FOLD into the chicken mixture, sprinkle on the parsley, and mix again. Chill for 2 hours before serving.
This salad is recommended for lunch buffets, but if you take it on a picnic remember to keep in it in an ice cooler until ready to serve since mayonnaise can go bad in hot weather.

Tapenade Spread

1/2 c. imported black olives, pitted 4 anchovy fillets 2 t. capers, thoroughly drained 1 c. fresh basil leaves, rinsed & patted dry (if fresh basil is not available, use 1 c. fresh parsley leaves and 2 teaspoons dried basil) 1/4 c. best-quality olive oil 1/4 c. green olives 1 garlic clove 1 t. lemon juice 1/4 c. mayonnaise (optional)

COMBINE black and green olives, anchovy fillets, garlic, capers, lemon juice and basil in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process until smooth.
WITH the motor still running, drizzle in the oil to make a thick, fluffy sauce. For a lighter sauce, ideal for raw vegetables, blend in the mayonnaise. TASTE and correct seasonings. PLACE spread into a bowl and cover. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Red, White, and Blue Trifle

BAKE any white cake (or use Sara Lee Pound Cake) CUT into 12 servings CUTE/CUBE each serving of cake into individual parfait glass or small dessert dish, making one layer of cake, a layer of whipped cream, a layer of cake, another layer of whipped cream, THEN garnish with blue berries (or any berry of your choice). For a really special dessert, mix VANILLA PUDDING and once chilled, substitute a layer of whipped cream for the vanilla pudding. Then top off with berries.

Let me know if you make any of these recipes, AND... don't forget to invite me to your garden party!!


  1. I'm making note of your recipes!

    I have several summery hats. Love to wear them!

    We used to have lots of picnics. We need to renew that "tradition". Waxed paper wrapped sandwiches taste so much better than plastic wrapped sandwiches!! At least that is my opinion!;-)

    Back Porch Musings

  2. That's a very yummy menu! I'd like to try the Cherry Soup this summer. Thanks!


  3. Love the recipes and pictures! I grew up on Sweet Tea,probably why I am doing Weight Watchers now LOL :)



  4. Oh I love your blog, all your photos! I live just outside of Conroe in Cut and Shoot!

    That soup sounds SO good!!

  5. I think that a Garden Party sounds perfect right now! and those recipes sound delicious. The Cherry Soup sounds yummy, and different. I don't even think I've heard my mother mention that (and she reads cookbooks like novels)---she'll be excited to have a new one!

    Very pretty garden photos, too...

  6. Your flowers are so pretty! Ours haven't grown that much this season. We had a hard freeze a couple of weeks ago. I would love to go on an old time picnic! When I home schooled my son, we had a picnic every day when the weather permitted, but he is 17 today and going to public school now, boy do I miss those days. I would love to be able to come visit you! I miss you!
    Theresa S.

  7. I'd love to have a garden party..I'm still working on my garden. Your flower pics are beautiful!

    SOuthern Hospitality


I so enjoy your comments and you stopping by!

Thank you so much for following: