Perfect picnic fare or outside dining options offered by Dee Dee

05/27/2014 9:23 AM

05/27/2014 9:24 AM

It's picnic time and we're finding so many ways to eat outside before the “real” heat kicks in, which is just around the bend. When fresh peaches make their debut, I am going to make the peach salad I am featuring today, as well as the cucumber and spinach salad. The big Crock-pot is coming off the rolling metal cart and I am making barbecued spareribs made in the slow cooker next week.

The daylilies think they are in Kansas so only buds are appearing but by the looks of many of them, there will be some very showy flowers coming soon. And this is just in time for the Daylily Educational Exhibit on June 7, at the Botanic Garden -Oak Hall, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It's free; come vote for YOUR favorite daylily.

Stuffed Peach Salad

This is so easy and so delicious.

• Peel large ripe peaches. Halve; remove pits.
• Place on lettuce leaves and fill peach cavities with red raspberries.
• Serve with Cool Whip or whipped cream.

I also like other small fruit as a filler, such as blueberries or cut up grapes.

Cucumber and Spinach Salad

• 3/4 pound fresh spinach-leaves washed and dried-torn into pieces
• 2 large cucumbers, thinly sliced
• 1 bunch green onions-sliced including the green tops
• 1 small can Mandarin oranges-drained (11 ounce can)


• 1/2 cup plain yogurt
• 1 cup sour cream
• 1/2 teaspoon salt

1. Mix together the dressing ingredients and store in the refrigerator.

2. Reserve some of the green onions as a garnish.

3. Combine the rest of the onions with spinach, cucumbers, and oranges and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

4. When ready to serve, place individual portions of the salad on plates and spoon the dressing over the salad.

5. Garnish tops with sliced green onion that was reserved.

This serves 4-6.

Barbecued Crock-pot Spareribs

I prefer the slender regular spareribs for this recipe.

• 5 pounds spareribs
• 1 1/2 cups ketchup
• 1 1/2 cups water
• 4 Tablespoons brown sugar
• 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
• 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
• 1/2 cup pineapple juice

1. In a large skillet brown the ribs.

2. Place half the ribs in Crock-pot, reserve out the other half.

3. In a large saucepan combine all remaining ingredients (except the reserved ribs), and bring to a boil. Simmer for 10 minutes.

4. Pour half the sauce over the ribs that are in the Crock-pot and cover with remaining ribs, followed by the rest of the sauce.

5. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours OR on high for 5-6 hours.

6. One can make this recipe in the oven by placing all ingredients as mentioned above in a large casserole dish, cover and bake at 350 degrees for 1 1/2 - 2 hours.

This serves 6.

Tip of the week:

Hard boiled or raw? To tell if an egg is hard boiled or raw, just spin it. If it wobbles, it's raw. If it spins evenly, it's hard-boiled. If you need to store hard-boiled eggs with raw eggs and want an easy way to tell them apart, just add a small amount of balsamic vinegar to the cooking water. The eggshells will come out of the water with a slight brown tint that is easy to distinguish from the raw eggs. From all I have read, we keep hard boiled eggs no longer than one week.

What my Grandmother didn't teach me:

If you chill salad plates at least an hour before you need them, the salad will stay cold and crisper much longer. This really helps if you are eating your meal outdoors.

We are enjoying the Texas sweet corn that is coming into the markets. And the easy way we fix it is to remove the husks and silk, wash each ear with cool water, break the ears in half and steam for only a few minutes or until the kernels are tender. All they might need is a little butter, salt and pepper to taste.

Have another good week living in Parker County. Hope more rain comes our way soon.

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