Happy Birthday USA!

The Mentos display can be a fun option for 4th of July fireworks. Photo by D’Ann Dreiling.

The Dish


Photos and column by  D’Ann Dreiling

     The 4th of July is all about commemorating the birth of our great country with family and friends.  Whether at the lake or in your backyard, the grills will be smokin’. Dinner guests, donned in their red, white and blue, will be singing “Yankee Doodle Dandy” even if they don’t know the right words, after feasting on these delicious, tried and true recipes.

Mentos display

And what’s the 4th of July without fireworks?!!!  Not allowed in your neighborhood?!!!

Well, lest ye forget, remember that old sixth grade science experiment……..bring on the Mentos and Diet Coke! (outside only, and be sure to use Diet Coke or things could get a little sticky.)

Mentos display

  • 1 2-liter bottle of warm Diet Coke
  • 1 tube of Mentos mint candy

Find a level spot for the open Coke bottle.  Open mint tube at the end.  Pour mints into Coke and step back!

Side Dishes and Dessert

     Hot dogs, hamburgers, steaks are a given, but it’s time to step up with some fabulous side dishes.

     The appetizer   

  • 2 large ripe avocados, peeled and diced
  •  2 tomatoes, diced
  •  1/4 cup red onion, chopped
  •  1 tablespoon parsley
  •   1/2 teaspoon oregano 
  •   2 tablespoons olive oil
  •   tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 4 oz. feta cheese
  • salt to taste

Mix all ingredients and serve with Tostitos

  Quick and easy wild rice casserole

  • 1 stick melted butter
  • 10 1/2 oz. can beef consommé, undiluted 
  • 10 1/2 oz. can onion soup, undiluted 
  •  8 oz. can sliced water chestnuts, drained
  • 8 oz. cam sliced mushrooms, drained
  •  6 oz. box Uncle Ben’s long grain, wild rice w/seasoning

 Preheat oven to 350*. Stir ingredients in a 1-½ quart casserole dish.  Bake uncovered for 1 hour.


      Mandarin Orange Salad

  •  6 to 8 cups mixed greens
  • 4 green onions thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries 
  • 1 cup walnuts toasted in 2 T. butter & 2 T. br. sugar
  • 1 15oz. can Mandarin oranges drained and patted dry
  • 1 cup crumbled feta

 The dressing 

  •  1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar 
  • 2 tablespoons orange marmalade
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 or 2 dashes Tabasco

Blend all ingredients together and serve over salad.

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The greatest dessert in the History of the Entire World

The Greatest Dessert in the History of the Entire World 

“ The Red Coats will be climbing over your fence for a taste of this”!

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) melted butter
  • 1 box vanilla ice cream (softened to spread)
  • 1 jar caramel sauce ( you can substitute hot fudge)   

Preheat oven to 400*   

            Mix together first five ingredients and spread mixture evenly on large baking sheet.  Bake 15 minutes turning once.  Using a 9×13 baking pan, crumble half of the mixture in bottom of pan.  Top with 1/2 of the caramel sauce. Spread all of the softened ice cream on top of sauce.  Add remaining crumbles then remaining sauce.  Freeze.







        GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!!!

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