Busy families can catch the fresh taste of springtime with simple homemade salads. Some of Alabama’s top cooks share their favorite recipes in this month’s Country Kitchen offering everything from seafood to fresh fruit to tempt your taste buds.Los Osos Shrimp Salad
¾ cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon soy sauce
¾ teaspoon ginger
2 cups fresh bean sprouts
2 cups cooked shrimp
¼ cup minced green onions
1 (8-ounce) can water chestnuts, drained and rinsed
1 (3-ounce) can chow mein noodlesMake dressing by mixing thoroughly mayonnaise, lemon juice, soy sauce, and ginger. Set aside.
Cook bean sprouts in boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Drain and chill. Combine chilled sprouts with shrimp, onions, and chestnuts. Chill until ready to serve. Just before serving, toss dressing and chow mein noodles with salad.- Margaret Fox, Crenshaw CountySugar Free Fruit Salad
1 (8-ounce) cream cheese, softened
1 (6-ounce) carton vanilla yogurt
14 packets Equal sweetener
4 apples, chopped
2 cups grapes With an electric mixer, thoroughly mix first three ingredients. Stir in fruit; transfer to serving bowl and chill before serving.
Note: Any relatively dry fruit can be used in this recipe, but juicier fruits will affect results.
— Jo Ann Grantland, Morgan CountySawdust Salad
1 (3-ounce) package orange gelatin
1 (3-ounce) package lemon gelatin
1 ½ cups boiling water
1 ½ cups cold water
1 (20-ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
2 bananas, sliced or diced
1 (10-ounce) bag miniature marshmallows
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup pineapple juice
1 egg, beaten
1 (8-ounce) softened cream cheese
1 (8-ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheeseCombine both gelatins and boiling water in a bowl, stirring until dissolved. Add cold water, pineapple, bananas and marshmallows. Pour mixture into a 9- x 13-inch dish. Refrigerate until firm.
Combine sugar, flour, pineapple juice and egg in a saucepan. Cook, stirring, over low heat until thickened. Cool and pour over congealed layer.
Cream softened cream cheese with mixer. Fold in whipped topping. Spread over second layer. Sprinkle with grated cheese. Refrigerate overnight.
— Jo Ann Grantland, Morgan CountyBroccoli Salad
2 packages Ramen noodles, any flavor
¾ cup canola oil
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
½ cup sugar
1 package broccoli slaw
1 bunch green onions, chopped
1 cup toasted slivered almonds
1 cup salted sunflower seedsRemove seasoning packets from Ramen noodles package and crush noodles. Set aside.
To prepare the dressing, mix together oil, vinegar, sugar, and contents from seasoning packets from noodles. Pour over slaw and onions in a large bowl and refrigerate before serving.
Stir in crushed noodles, almonds, and sunflower seeds just before serving.
— Sarah Reed, Sumter County106 Marinated Salad
1 large bunch broccoli
8 ounces fresh mushrooms
1 or 2 tomatoes
1 red onion, sliced into rings
1 green bell pepper, sliced into rings
1 (15-ounce) can drained olives (optional)
Olive oil, just to cover lightly
Salt and pepper
Fresh minced garlic
1 (16-ounce) bottle Catalina or Russian salad dressingClean broccoli; separate into flowerets. Slice larger pieces. Slice mushrooms into broccoli, along with tomatoes, onion, bell pepper, and olives. Toss all with a little olive oil. Add seasonings and fresh garlic to taste. Pour salad dressing over all and toss lightly. Chill well before serving.– Margaret Fox, Crenshaw CountyStrawberry Pretzel Salad
¾ cup melted butter
2 cups crushed pretzels
1 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar, divided
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 small container whipped topping, thawed
1 (6-ounce) package strawberry gelatin
2 cups boiling water
2 (10-ounce) packages frozen strawberries, thawed
1 cup crushed pineapple Mix together butter, crushed pretzels and 3 tablespoons sugar and press into a 9- x 13-inch pan. Bake at 400 degrees for 7 minutes. Cool completely.
In a mixing bowl blend cream cheese, 1 cup sugar, and thawed whipped topping; spread over cooled crust.
In a separate bowl dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Add fruits with their juices to the gelatin and stir to combine. Chill slightly. Pour over cream cheese mixture and chill thoroughly before serving.
— Sarah Reed, Sumter County.