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Quick recipe to get the room talking

September 18, 2012

By GRACE STRAHAN

Why is it that every person that claims ‘not-to-be-a-cook’ has a recipe that everyone wants?

Self proclaimed non-cooks generally have at least one recipe in their repertoire that has been perfected over time. Anytime he or she has to attend an event, this will be the dish brought. Once you’ve had a taste, you are going to covet this very recipe for your own. I’ve known many of these people in my lifetime and have snatched up quite a few of these recipes.

I have observed that non-cook recipes contain a classic combination of ingredients that are both easy and universally appealing to the palate. How so? These are desserts containing ingredients like sweetened condensed milk and cream cheese or something similar. Or, there is the ever-so-tasty appetizer with sour cream and cheese. Come on! Who doesn’t love any of these ingredients? Usually, it’s a basic combination of ready-made ingredients that almost anyone loves. Well, I suppose, unless you are lactose intolerant, and in that case, I’m not sure what to say.

When it gets right down to it, think about your own childhood comfort foods. I’m sure that some of these memories include something as simple as the cheesecake made straight from a box mix. Who can resist a creamy dessert with a graham cracker crust and fruit topping? Sure, these are not going to be the menu items you find on a five star menu, but even the most refined chef or foodie has memories of these simple, humble items that would certainly cause them to clean a plate.

I knew a teacher that worked with my mother when I was in high school — Georgia. She was young, single and fresh out of college. Whenever there was a potluck or need for her to bring a dish, she would bring “Dumb Salad."

I know that may not be the most politically correct name for a recipe. I’m a former kindergarten teacher. My students thought underwear was a dirty word, and someone had certainly cursed if your said “stupid” or “dumb."

I have seen this recipe called Cherry Fluff, and this might be a better description. But, I still love Georgia’s name for this dessert. Call it whatever you want. You will love it and so will everyone who eats it.

Dumb Salad

1 can of sweetened condensed milk
1 can of cherry pie filling
1 can of pineapple tidbits, drained
1 large tub of Cool Whip, thawed

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and chill until ready to serve.

Email Grace Strahan at gstrahan@SynergeticsDCS.com.

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