The Newnan Times-Herald

Food

Cool food for hot August nights


  • By The Newnan Times-Herald
  • |
  • Aug. 11, 2016 - 5:53 PM

Cool food for hot August nights

The Newnan Times-Herald

– By Barb Wetherington

Sometimes it is just so hot that all we want for supper is a nice cool salad.

One of our favorite salads is a layered salad. They are filling. They are pretty. And they are delicious. This week I am sharing three of our favorites along with a cool after supper treat that people of all ages will love.

This can be made in a pretty clear glass salad bowl, or if you have youngsters in your house, you can simply layer them in a 9x13-inch baking dish for easier serving. Either way, have a good bread available and supper will be complete.

•••

Layered Pasta Salad

  • 3 cups (after cooking) of pasta shells, cooked and drained
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 (10-ounce) package frozen peas, thawed and drained
  • 8 ounces of chopped ham
  • 1/2 cup of mayonnaise
  • 1/2 to 1 cup of ranch dressing
  • 1 cup of cheese crumbles (or shreds - whatever you have on hand)
  • 1 or 2 cups of halved grape or cherry tomatoes

Layer the first 4 ingredients in a salad bowl.

Mix mayonnaise and dressing until blended and spread over the salad to the edge of the bowl. Top with cheese and tomatoes. Refrigerate until ready to eat and toss gently before serving.

•••

Layered Caesar, Pasta and Shrimp Salad

This salad is fancy enough for "date night.”

  • 1/2 cup creamy Caesar dressing
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 cloves of minced garlic (you can use the bottled kind for ease)
  • 1 bag of mixed salad greens
  • 3 cups (after cooking) of pasta shells, cooked and drained
  • 1 large tomato, chopped (or 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes sliced in half)
  • 1 cup of seasoned croutons (I buy those handy little bags in the produce section - they come in some wonderful flavors and can be kept on hand in your pantry)
  • 2 hard-cooked eggs, sliced
  • 3/4 to 1-pound of cooked and cleaned medium shrimp (can be bought in the frozen food department with all the work already done - just thaw them out)
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese

Mix dressing, mayonnaise and garlic until blended.

Place half of the salad greens in a bowl. Cover with pasta, tomatoes and part of the shrimp. Next comes the remaining greens, croutons, eggs. the rest of the shrimp and the cheese.

Add the dressing just before you eat and toss gently.

•••

Layered Greek Salad

Fancy enough for company!

  • 1 small bag of romaine lettuce salad
  • 1 small bag of baby spinach leaves
  • 3 cups (after cooking) of pasta shells, cooked and drained
  • 1 large tomato, chopped (or 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes sliced in half)
  • 1 cucumber, cut in half and then sliced crosswise
  • 1 small red onion, quartered lengthwise, and then thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1/2 to 1 cup of mayonnaise
  • 1/2 to 1 cup of creamy Caesar dressing
  • 1 package of crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 can of well-drained, medium-size pitted ripe olives

Mix mayonnaise and dressing until well blended.

Combine lettuce and baby spinach and put half in a salad bowl.

Cover with layers of the pasta, tomatoes, remaining lettuce/spinach mixture, cucumbers, and onions.

Spread dressing over the top of salad all the way to the edge Top with feta cheese and black olives.

Refrigerate until you are ready to eat and then toss gently before serving.

•••

Frozen Banana Pops

Although this recipe is something that needs to be made a bit in advance, everyone in your family will love it. As a matter of fact, Jim is so serious about popsicles in the summertime, that I went shopping at a gourmet cook's store in order to get those popsicle molds that make the large double pops we always bought from the ice cream man way back when. But you don't need those (unless you just can't stand not having them), just use whatever you always use - even paper cups! These taste so good that no one will care what shape they are!

  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk (NOT evaporated milk)
  • 1/2 cup of orange juice
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1 (8-ounce) container of vanilla yogurt

Blend all ingredients in the blender, stopping to scrape down the sides. Place mixture in your molds. Freeze 30 minutes and insert your craft sticks in the center of each. Continue freezing until firm (2 to 4 hours, depending on your own freezer).

Enjoy! From our kitchen to yours.