It’s time for fun outdoor party food

This year has flown by, but I guess we say that every year. It is already May and with graduation and the Memorial Day holiday just a week away. It’s time for backyard parties or pool parties so we start to think of some fun party food. I have some party food I have loved for years and want to share them with you. My all-time favorite is a shrimp mold. I got this recipe from a dear friend, DiAnn. We go back 35 years to San Antonio and Houston. She grew up on the coast and we ate shrimp ’till it came out of our ears. SHRIMP MOLD Dissolve one packet of Knox gelatin in 1/2 cup of water’I do this in the microwave. Stir in 1 can of tomato soup, then add: 1 cup of Mayonnaise 1 8 0z. cream cheese Mix this until smooth. ADD: 1/3 cup of chopped green onion 1/3 cup of chopped bell pepper 1/3 cup of chopped celery Then add 1 pound of cooked, finely chopped shrimp. Pour this mixture into an oiled copper mold and chill at least 8 hours. It will set in 4 hours but the flavors will come out more the longer it is chilled. Unmold, garnish and serve with your favorite crackers. RYE BREAD TREATS This simple, tasty bread treat is always a big hit at parties. You can add your own combination of toppings. Just use the mini loaves of party rye bread. In a small mixing bowl, combine mayonnaise with grated parmesan or Romano Cheese until the mixture is fairly thick. Then add your favorite flavorings. I like: Chopped green onions Capers Saut’ed Mushrooms Jalapenos Any finely chopped seafood’shrimp, crab or salmon. This list could go on but you get the idea. Spread the mixture on the bread and place on a baking sheet. Cook in a 350 oven until the topping is slightly browned and bubbly. Your guests will love them. CHEESE BALLS Every party has to have a cheese ball. I have a couple that I use a lot and seem to be a big hit. PINEAPPLE CHEESE BALL Mix 2 -8oz. cream cheese with : 1/4 cup of chopped green onions 1/4 cup of chopped bell pepper Add a 3 1/2 oz can of drained, crushed pineapple 1 cup of finely chopped pecans 1 Tsp. of seasoned salt Blend together and chill overnight. Form a ball and roll in some finely chopped nuts. You may add more onions and peppers to taste. “CHEEZ” BALL Mix 2 jars of Kraft Old English Cheese 1 jar of Kraft Roka Blue Cheese 2 small cream cheese. Cream these together . Add 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce 2 tsp. garlic salt Chill overnight and for a ball, roll in chopped nuts. One little hint’coat your hands with butter or cooking spray before handling the cheese and it won’t stick to you. I hope you enjoy these little treats Until next time, happy dining.’Barbara

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