Monday, November 23, 2009

Requested recipes :)

When you've got a house full of guests for the holidays, lunches can be a challenge. Here are two sandwich fillings that are very popular in our house and that often get requested for parties, etc. The first is my grandmother's recipe for pimento cheese spread. The secret is in the cheese you use, so if you want it good and cheesy, make sure to read my notes at the end. The second recipe is my "famous" chicken salad recipe that has grapes and pecans in it. It's always a hit and usually requested for "tea sandwiches" as well as other events. Enjoy and let me know what you think if you try them!

Pimento Cheese

8 oz Cheddar cheese
8 oz Sharp cheddar cheese
8 oz Velveeta cheese
1 dash Salt
1 dash Pepper
1 1/2 tbsp Sugar -- or substitute 2 pkts Splenda
1 cup Mayonnaise
4 ounces diced pimento -- undrained

Shred cheese. Mix mayo, salt, pepper and sugar together to blend. Add pimentos with liquid to mayo mixture. Fold in cheese. Refrigerate for 2 hrs or overnight for best flavor.

From Betty Wood Calvert

Christi's notes: I normally try and get Cracker Barrel cheese, 1 block extra sharp and 1 block sharp. They are 10 oz. each so I just use the full amount plus 8 oz of Velveeta. This makes a drier" mixture, but we like it a little less creamy. If you want it more creamy, increase the mayo to 1 1/4 cups or so.

The Velveeta shreds better when very cold so I usually freeze it for 15 minutes before shredding for best results.

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Chicken Pecan Salad

Serving Size : 8

2 cans chicken in broth -- drained (9.75 oz each)
1 cup sour cream
1 cup mayonnaise
2 stalks celery -- diced
2/3 pound seedless green grapes -- sliced in half
1 cup pecan halves -- toasted and roughly chopped
1/2 cup fresh dill -- chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

In a large bowl, mix sour cream and mayonnaise until throughly blended. Add salt, pepper and dill. Fold in chicken, celery, grapes and pecan halves. Refrigerate, covered, for at least 2 hours or overnight to blend flavors. Serve on a bed of greens, or as a sandwich on croissants with fresh fruit. Wonderfully refreshing!

You can use fresh poached chicken instead of canned if you prefer. When I make this for large groups the canned is easier, but the poached is better tasting. I would do 4 chicken breasts to substitute.

The fresh dill really does make a difference, but if you just CAN'T do fresh, substitute about 2 tbsp dried.

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