Appetizers, Salads, Preserves, Sauces and Condiments

Dot’s Broccoli Salad

Dot is a distant cousin of mine, who as a small child lived in the same fishing village as I did. Our mothers knew each other, but her and I were both very young, when Dot’s mother moved along with the two young girls to Ontario. We reconnected as adults while both doing genealogy research. One day she mentioned her Broccoli Salad to me and as it stands it is still my favourite version of this all time classic!

Crab Dip

In an attempt to find the ultimate crab dip, this one is the closest I found but still not quite there. I am looking for one which is served warm. This one is served cold.  It is the best cold crab dip I have found!

Gail passed away many years ago and unfortunately took many recipes with her. There were several which I never requested and later regretted not asking.  This cheese ball is easy to make and freezes well.

Ailene’s Chow

Ailene was always the matriarch to the Pharmacy Department at the hospital. She was fun, gracious and wonderful person. I have adopted several of her recipes and this one is extra special. This chow recipe tastes exactly the same as my Grammie’s recipe!


Crab Dip

In an attempt to find the ultimate crab dip, this one is the closest I found but still not quite there. I am looking for one which is served warm. This one is served cold.  It is the best cold crab dip I have found!

Gina’s Cranberry Sauce

Gina is one of my best friends and the  mother to two of Michael’s children. This recipe won me over as soon as I tried it. It isn’t too sweet and the orange flavour mellows the tartness of the cranberries. You can make it with fresh or frozen berries in less than 30 minutes. It takes a bit of time to set though, so make a few hours in advance of a meal. Orange juice can be replaced by an equal amount of Grand Marnier or an orange liqueur like Cointreau.

Classic Hard Sauce

Plum pudding is one of my favourite Christmas desserts. I don’t have it much anymore as it no longer seems to be a favourite of others. I came up with this hard sauce recipe in the mid ’70s trying to mimic the original hard sauce I once had at someone else’s home.

Brandy Hard Sauce

I like this recipe and used it a lot as it is a creamy version of the Classic hard sauce. It is served cold and melts to a nice smooth sauce over a warm dessert, whether it is plum pudding or gingerbread. It has egg white in it, so shouldn’t be stored too long before use.

Hot Nacho Dip

This recipe became so commonly used, that I think it ran its course. I rarely see it around anymore. To update its appearance, it can be served with pita chips instead of nachos!

Hot Spirited Sauce

This is a nice alternative to the traditional hard sauces as it is served hot. Besides being used as a sauce for plum pudding, it can be poured over sponge cake, gingerbread and even ice cream for a simple dessert.

A very simple dressing, light and easy to make.

Potato Pancake Syrup

This is just one of those odd ideas which actually work. For some reason you are out of maple syrup and you want to make pancakes. Possibly on your boat and you can’t sail over to the corner store and pick up something which would work. As long as you have potatoes, water, white and brown sugar this recipe will work. It has to be kept in a fridge for up to three days but can be frozen for future use!

Carol’s Pickled Beets

My mother made pickled beets for years and it wasn’t until I tried Carol’s that I realized there was something much better. I finally convinced my mom that adding some spices and sugar would improve her own recipe. I was about 17 or 18 and asked Carol for her recipe. Although Mom never indicated she followed this recipe afterwards, her beets started to taste identical!  I made them once and they were so very easy to make. The hard part is waiting a month for them to be “ready.”

Aggie’s Pumpkin Preserves

Another great recipe from Aggie. This is more like a marmalade without the bitterness from the citrus fruit. I can be used as a jam but also can be poured over plain cake or icecream (or both) for an easy dessert.  Even with sterilized jars, sometimes bacteria forms in this mixture (a pumpkin thing) and the jars are best if kept in the fridge

One summer I found I had an abundance of tomatoes in the garden. I have cilantro which grows wild. A perfect combination of ingredients to make salsa! Not sure how long this will last in the fridge, as my one jar I left out to eat, was gone in a day. I would expect only a week. Freeze the salsa and thaw, when needed.  You can double, triple or quadruple the recipe. The amounts of garlic and jalapeno peppers can vary. This recipe is mild to medium in strength and light on garlic. Fresh garlic and jalapeno peppers can be substituted. A can of corn could be used instead of the yellow pepper. Serve with multigrain nacho or pita chips!

Shrimp Dip (my favourite)

Sometimes I think I could live on this dip!  You can dip anything in it, but my favourite is rippled potato chips with loads of salt! I don’t remember at all where I got this recipe from. I don’t remember never making it! Am sure it has been in my recipe book for over 35 years!

Southwestern Dip

I am not a fan of these type of dips but I made this one and others loved it! It is great for dipping chicken wings and nacho chips!


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