Sweet salads are no-cook treats

Published 2:36 pm Wednesday, August 17, 2005

By Staff
I had several comments about the no-cook recipes found in this column a few weeks ago. I'm certainly glad that you found them helpful and tasty. That's what I love to hear!
Since the weather is still a little on the warm side and family reunions and homecomings are still being held around the area, I thought you might find these cool dishes a treat for just such an occasion.
The first time I ever had anything like this was at a church homecoming event. When I asked what it was I was told "pink stuff." Yep, it was pink all right, but I really wanted to know what it was. Everybody I asked gave me the same answer. However, someone found the nerve to tell me that it was also called a "congealed salad." The very nerve of that person - a salad has lettuce or potatoes or cabbage in it - not whipped cream!
In the years following my first exposure to such concoctions I have learned that the "pink stuff" name was very fitting. Most of these types of dishes are simply created by inventive cooks. Hence, names like pink stuff and green fluff.
As I stated earlier, this type of dish never has seemed right at the "salad" end of the table. I usually get a little helping on my plate with the full intention of waiting until the end of my meal to devour the fluffy dish!
Whenever you like to eat this type of dish, either at the beginning or the end of a meal, I hope you enjoy the recipes.
Summer Pineapple Fluff
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 and one-third cups mayonnaise
1 (20 ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained with juice reserved
1 pint heavy cream, whipped
1 (10.5 ounce) package miniature marshmallows
In a large bowl, stir together softened cream cheese, mayonnaise, pineapple, and three tablespoons of reserved pineapple juice. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold whipped cream and marshmallows into the mixture. Add more pineapple juice, if needed, without making it too wet. Transfer the salad to an attractive serving bowl, smoothing top with a rubber spatula or large spoon. Cover, and refrigerate eight hours, or overnight. Serve chilled.
Here's another recipe that sounds a little odd - a salad made with buttermilk. Yeah, I know. My mom says buttermilk is made to help leftover cornbread easier to eat. I've never liked mom's way of using buttermilk (except in making biscuits and cornbread from scratch) but I sure do like a good buttermilk salad - even if it does sound crazy!
Buttermilk Salad
1 (20 ounce) can crushed pineapple, undrained
3 tablespoons white sugar
1 (6 ounce) package orange flavored gelatin
2 cups buttermilk
1 (8 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
Mix pineapple and sugar together in a medium saucepan, and bring to a low boil, stirring occasionally. Stir in gelatin until completely dissolved, remove from heat, and cool to room temperature. Add buttermilk, and refrigerate 1 hour, or until partially set. Gently fold in whipped topping. Pour mixture into a lightly oiled gelatin mold. Refrigerate eight hours, or until completely set.
I'm not sure why this next recipe has "champagne" in the title. There isn't any champagne in the recipe. Go figure. Probably got its name the same way the "pink stuff" did. Anyway, this one sounds good enough to give a try.
Champagne Salad
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 cup white sugar
1 (15 ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
1 (16 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 (10 ounce) package frozen strawberries, thawed
3 bananas, diced
1 cup chopped walnuts
In a large bowl, cream together the cream cheese and sugar. Fold in the pineapple, whipped topping and strawberries and mix well. Stir in bananas and walnuts. Freeze for four to six hours or overnight. Remove from freezer one to two hours before serving.
A person named Tiffany submitted this recipe and what she says is exactly the way I feel. "This dish may be a salad but if there are leftovers," she says "I eat it anytime."
Anytime Fruit Salad
24 ounces cottage cheese
1 (12 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 (6 ounce) package orange flavored gelatin mix
2 (11 ounce) cans mandarin oranges, drained
1 (20 ounce) can pineapple chunks, drained
In a large bowl, combine the cottage cheese, whipped topping and gelatin mix. Stir in the oranges and pineapple. Chill in refrigerator.
These recipes really are good for anytime, but are especially good during the warm months. I do enjoy these types of dishes throughout the year. By choosing fruits and berries wisely, you could change any of these recipes so that it becomes a wonderful holiday treat. How do you think cranberry sauce was invented? Someone wanted a little something different and experimented with recipes that already existed. You could be the next inventor of a wonderful dish!
I hope you are enjoying this column. I certainly do enjoy putting the recipes together in a way that you can use. It's fun for me and I hope interesting for you.
If you have a recipe or cooking tip to share, I'd love to hear from you. If there is a recipe you've lost and would like some help in locating a replacement, I'll certainly be glad to help in the search. Just let me know what you need, and I'll do what I can to assist you. You can reach me by leaving a message at the newspaper office or by email at lisa.tindell@brewtonstandard.com. I look forward to hearing from you soon!
Until next week, Happy Cooking!

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