Independence Day Menu

26 June 2024

The Fourth of July is generally a time of parties, picnics, or just sitting on the patio watching the fireworks. If you are looking for some interesting items to serve or bring to an event, here are some recipes that sound fun and many items can come from your own vegetable garden or fresh from the local farmers’ market.

Watermelon Gazpacho

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups cubed, seeded watermelon
  • 2 English cucumbers, chopped
  • 2 bell peppers, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
  • 2 tablespoons minced ginger
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice
  • mint leaves for garnish
  • small pieces of watermelon for garnish

Directions:

  • Working in batches, put all ingredients into a blender or food processor and blend for 30 seconds per batch. There should still be a bit of texture.
  • Refrigerate for 1 hour.
  • Garnish with mint leaves and watermelon.

Cauliflower Casserole

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower, chopped
  • 2 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted

Directions:

  • Steam cauliflower until fork-tender, about 5 to 8 minutes.
  • Beat cream cheese and milk. Stir in Parmesan and cheddar.
  • Mix bread crumbs and butter in a small bowl.
  • Place steamed cauliflower into a 2 1/2 quart casserole dish. Add cheese mixture and stir. Top with bread crumbs.
  • Bake in an oven preheated to 350 until brown and bubbly, about 20 minutes.

Bleu Burgers

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1 large bell pepper, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 packages (4 ounces each) crumbled bleu cheese

Directions:

  • Mix ground beef, bell pepper, garlic, and salt and pepper. Divide and form 16 patties.
  • Place 1 ounce bleu cheese on top of each of 8 patties and top with another plain patty. Press sides together to hold cheese inside.
  • Cook on a preheated outdoor grill to desired doneness. Suggested 160 degrees internal temperature.

Blackberry Cherry Salsa

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups dried cherries
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped almonds
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
  • 1 tablespoon line juice
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup fresh blackberries

Directions:

  • Combine all ingredients.

Raspberry Icebox Cake

Ingredients:

  • 24 graham crackers, crushed
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 (6 ounce) package raspberry flavored gelatin mix
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 cups raspberries
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 20 large marshmallows
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream, whipped

Directions:

  • Mix crushed graham crackers, melted butter, and brown sugar until combined.
  • Reserve 1/4 graham cracker mixture.
  • Press the remainder into a 9 X 13 baking dish or pan. Bake in an oven preheated to 350 for 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.
  • Dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Add raspberries, stirring until combined. Chill until partially set.
  • Spread gelatin mixture over graham crust.
  • Pour milk into a microwave-safe bowl and heat until warm. Add marshmallows and stir until melted. Cool slightly.
  • Combine whipped cream and marshmallow mixture. Spread on top of raspberry mixture. Sprinkle with reserved graham topping.
  • Chill 3 to 4 hours before serving.

Red, White, and Blue Dump Cake

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups strawberries
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 package (18.25 ounce) white cake mix
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted

Directions:

  • Place strawberries and blueberries into a 9 X 12 inch baking dish.
  • Pour cake mix on top. Drizzle with butter.
  • Bake in an oven preheated to 325 for about 45 minutes or until top is light golden brown.
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