Thursdays are for cooking….

| June 27, 2019

Vegetable have feelings, too!

Summer’s here and the simpler the food is to fix, the better, right?  Outdoors with the grill is one thing, but if it’s raining, don’t you guys just take the grill into the garage and run it there?

There is an old – very, very old – recipe for a summer dish that takes very little time to fix, can be fixed ahead and keeps well in the fridge as long as it’s covered: seven layer salad. It is quick to fix, keeps well, and goes along with corn on the cob, BBQ chicken (or anything like that) and only requires a spot on your plate. To keep it cold outdoors, set the pan on a bed of crushed ice.

Layer the following in order using a 9×13 pan.

  • lettuce – chopped or shredded – iceberg works well for this
  • onion – chopped (both red and green/spring onions are okay and add color)
  • green bell pepper – diced – you might want to use the other color sweet peppers in this
  • celery – chopped
  • green peas – fresh if you can get them; otherwise, thaw a small bag of frozen peas
  • dressing – mayonnaise – about 1.5 cup
  • cheddar cheese – shredded – be generous with this
  • bacon – nice crispy bacon, cut into 2″ pieces and cooked to crips

Do NOT mix it together before serving. Just provide a big spoon for people to dish it up onto their plates. Salt and pepper are NOT in this mix at all.

It’s the simplest thing to put together, along with potato salad. Enjoy!

Category: Economy

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The photo makes for a good oil painting still life. :mrgreen:


Summer- time for Silver Queen corn on the cob, crab cakes, and thickly sliced tomatoes.

Learned this on the waterfront in Souda Bay, Greece. Thickly slice your tomatoes- 1/4 inch or so. Arrange on a platter. Salt&pepper. Scatter shredded basil leaves over all. Add on thick slices of feta cheese or crumbled if preferred. Drizzle all with olive oil- break out the good stuff for this and don’t be stingy. Have crusty bread nearby.


skip olive oil and go for a really nice basalmic, add figs

5th/77th FA

OooH, Oooh, Oooh. I love a salad that has been turned into bacon. Also love a thick sliced, vine ripened tomato… with cheese…thick crusty bread…with thick sliced bacon. Some assembly required.

The ladies made one of yo layered salads for the family reunion Ex. Remember having to cook up another pound of the thin sliced bacon just for it. It went over bigly.

Some grilled crab cakes with all the trimmings (read low country boil) would be kinda tasty ‘Ed.


My neck of the woods it’s a crab boil, with corn on the cob, new potatoes, sausage, and of course hard crabs with lots of Old Bay. These are social occasions, and you’ll starve but for the other goodies, unless you know your way around the inside of a crab. You’ll know when your in the presence of a serious crab eater when all he or she uses is a butter knife and gets every bit out of the shell with it.

Crab cakes as I know them are too fragile to handle a grill. Mine are either oven broiled, or more likely pan fried.

5th/77th FA

Roger AW1Ed. We use way yonder more shrimps, because of the availability. Will throw in some crab legs too, usually frozen and it works OK. I’ve built your crab cake recipe and grilled them in a cast iron skillet. Prolly not as good as y’all can do (different product quality and lack of repetitive tries). Need to get myself back up towards the PDRofMD just so we can watch the game and pig out.

5th/77th FA

Tanks Ex. Still trying to hone that skill. Use olive oil, just a tad bit covering the bottom. Keeping the cakes from falling apart when I flip is a work in progress. Now that the heat has set in down here in God’s Country the oven and I are not on speaking terms. Any grilling and smoking being done is well into the evening hours. This time of year I get very intimate with my crocked pots. I do need to replace my bread baker machine.

Tho my HVAC machines are built by Trane, I give thanks everyday to Mr. Carrier.


Pro Trick. After you form the cakes, dust with flour and stick ’em in the reefer for an hour or so to chill. Then pull ’em out and pan fry. They will be much firmer and less likely to break up. They still need to be carefully handled, but you won’t be trying to stick them back together with a spatula.

Don’t be stingy on the oil, either. A good neutral oil like Canola, about 1/4 up the side of the crab cake is just about right.

5th/77th FA

Spanks to you Mateys. Didn’t think about chilling them rascals and know now that I had too little oil. Practice makes perfect. Go back to stove top also, can control the heat on the gas better. I did like the smokey flavor infused when I put the skillet on the hot coal fired grill and closed the lid. I’ll dig around and find me some double spatula thingys in a store somewhere or send this linky to my daughter. I don’t buy on line…at all. She does and she is constantly looking for things I’d want but might not buy for myself.


You also used olive oil- very low smoke point. Save that for salads or low heat cooking vegs and the like. You’ll do much better with a high smoke point oil like Canola or peanut. These are pretty neutral as flavor goes, also unlike olive.

5th/77th FA

Rogo Bro. Damn old sawbones had told me about a year ago to not use anything but olive oil for cooking. But then again, that was the same one that said basically not to eat anything but grass, so screw him. I know more old cooks and linemen than I do old doctors, so I’ma be gonna get me some canola back in stock.

Ya da man. You do pretty good for a squid. Still need to get back up there tho. My fondest memory of that area was the Chesapeake Bay Seafood House. We ’bout shut them down in ’88. The manager finally came out and said we had done had ALL the shrimps and crab legs we could eat. GOOD TIMES! Mrs AW1Ed might want to increase the perimeter security.


“You do pretty good for a squid.”

High praise from a dirt digging doggy.*grin*

In case you forgot:

World’s Best Crab Cakes

Keep it simple.
1 pound crab meat.
2 eggs
1/4 cup mayo
Juice and zest from 1 lemon
a few dashes Worcestershire sauce
Old Bay
Panko crumbs as needed

Mix eggs, mayo, juice and zest, Wooster sauce in a bowl. Add S&P, Old bay, mix. Gently fold in the crab meat. Add just enough Panko to firm up the mix. Form into patties and dust with the flour.

Refrigerate for at least an hour (this is key for pan frying- skip flour, etc if broiling).

Cook ’em up. Pan fry for about four minutes a side, or broil until brown, flip, repeat.

I’d allow tartar sauce, if made in front of me, but a squeeze of lemon is all you really need. Corn-on-the-cob and sliced tomatoes as mentioned above.

5th/77th FA

My Main Man. Gonna write it down and keep up with it this time. Had to go back thru 10 months of threads to find the recipe last time I tried ’em. Missed the part about chilling ’em. Will be making a provision run next day or so and will get what I need. Mention me to AnotherPat if you hear anything. Hope that one is doing OK, AP is missed. RTR/HBTD/Hope Navy wins every game…but ONE.



Sea Dragon

Sea Dragon’s Summer Farro Salad

1/2 cups farro
2 cups water
1 cup apple cider vinegar
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups frozen corn kernels, defrosted
1 pint pear tomatoes, halved
1 cup sliced black olives
1 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 red onion, diced
2 tsp minced garlic
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1/3 cup fresh lime juice or balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 cup cilantro or parsley, chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste

Rinse farro. Boil farro in water and vinegar for 15-20 minutes, or until al dente. Drain and let cool to room temperature.

Mix farro and the next ten ingredients in a large bowl. Refrigerate for an hour or overnight.

Prior to serving, salt and pepper to taste and add cilantro or parsley.