GREENSBURG — This coming weekend would be a good time for everyone to display our American flag to show that we are proud to be an American.
Cooking with fresh herbs is a good idea because we can use herbs instead of too much salt. I like to grow a few fresh herbs each year. When buying fresh herbs in the store, wrap them in a slightly damp paper towel, place in a resealable bag, press out most of the air and store in the refrigerator for five to six days. I also like to chop them up fine and save them for later use. Just put them in ice cube trays with a little water. You can also dry them by putting several stems together with a string or rubber band and hanging them upside down to dry in a warm airy room. When dry, crumble and put in small jars.
When substituting fresh herbs for dried use three times as much of the fresh ones.
I like using parsley for potato and chicken dishes and also in soups. With dill, both the seeds and leaves are flavorful. I like to use dill leaves in fish and soup dishes. And, of course, the seeds and the whole heads in dill pickles. Basil is one of the more common herbs used in stews, beef, fish and vegetable dishes. Herbs are good to try; learn to enjoy them in your cooking and baking.
Party Pesto Pinwheels
1 8 oz. tube of crescent roll dough
1/2 c. prepared pesto sauce
1/4 c. roasted sweet red peppers, drained and chopped
1/4 c. Parmesan cheese
1 c. pizza sauce, warmed
Unroll dough into two long rectangles and seal seams. Spread each roll with pesto then sprinkle with red pepper and cheese. Roll each up like a jelly roll. Cut each with a sharp knife into 10 slices. Place cut side down two inches apart on two ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 400 degrees until they are golden brown (about eight to 10 minutes). Serve warm with pizza sauce. Makes 20 pinwheels.
Herbed Bread Twists
1/4 c. softened butter
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. each dried basil ,marjoram and oregano
1 loaf ( 1 lb.) frozen bread dough
3/4 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 large egg
1 T. water
4 tsp. sesame seeds
Combine seasonings. Roll dough into a 12-inch square. Spread butter mixture to within 1/2 inch of edges; sprinkle with cheese. Fold dough into thirds. Cut width-wise into 24 strips. Twist each strip twice; pinch ends to seal. Place two inches apart on greased baking sheets. Cover and let rise in warm place until doubled (about 40 minutes). Beat egg and water; brush over dough. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake at 375 degrees until light brown (10 to 12 minutes.) Remove from pan to wire racks.
Nutty Broccoli Slaw
1 3 oz. pkg. chicken ramen noodles
1 16 oz. pkg. broccoli coleslaw mix
1 c. sliced green onions (about 2 bunches)
1 1/2 broccoli florets
1 6 oz. can ripe olives, drained and sliced
1 c. toasted sunflower kernels
1/2 c. toasted almond slivers
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. cider vinegar
1/2 c. olive oil
Set aside the noodle seasoning mix packet; crush the noodles and place in large bowl. Add the slaw mix, onions, broccoli, olives, sunflower kernels and almonds. In a jar with tight-fitting lid, combine the rest of ingredients and the contents of seasoning packet; shake well and drizzle over salad and toss to coat. Serve immediately.
Easy Key Lime Pie Trifle
1 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 c. heavy whipping cream
1/4 c. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 frozen Key lime pie (36 oz.) cut into 1-inch cubes
1 c. sweetened shredded coconut, toasted
1 c. toasted chopped pecans
In a bowl, beat cream cheese, cream, sugar and vanilla until soft peaks form. Place half of the pie pieces in a 3 qt. trifle bowl. Spread half the cream cheese mixture on top. Top with 1/2 c. coconut and 1/2 c. nuts. Repeat layers and refrigerate at least an hour. Makes 10 servings.
Quick Mango Sorbet
1 16 oz. pkg. frozen mango chunks, slightly thawed
1/2 c. passion fruit juice
2 T. sugar
Place all ingredients in a blender; cover and process until smooth. Serve immediately. For a firmer texture, cover and freeze for at least three hours. Makes 2 1/2 cups.