Potluck desserts

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I was thumbing through my sister Nancy’s recipe collection when I came across these special treats. She was known to bring these treats to potlucks to share with everyone. Once you saw her treats on the table, you made sure to grab one the first time through the line. If you waited, the odds were that the pan was empty when you went back, a sure sign of a food hit!

With recent May/June rains, it looks like the strawberries are going to have a bumper year. That is always an exciting sign and an opportunity to try new recipes. I found a recipe for Strawberry Bread that is loaded with strawberries. I can’t wait for the patch to open so that I can start making a new treat to share. Enjoy!

Rhubarb salad

4 cups diced rhubarb

1 1/2 cups water

1/2 cup sugar

1 package (6 ounces) strawberry Jello

1 cup orange juice

1 teaspoon grated orange peel

1 cup sliced fresh strawberries

In a saucepan, over medium heat, bring rhubarb, water and sugar to a boil. Cook uncovered until rhubarb is tender (6-8 minutes). Remove from heat. Stir in Jello until dissolved (2-3 minutes). Add orange juice and peel; mix well.

Chill until mix begins to thicken. Fold in strawberries and chill again. Garnish with mayonnaise, mint leaves and additional strawberries if desired.

S’more brownies

1 (21.5-ounce) package brownie mix

6 graham crackers

1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows

8 (1.5-ounce) bars milk chocolate, coarsely chopped

Prepare brownie mix according to package directions. Spread into greased 9 x 13 pan. Bake 15 minutes. Remove from oven.

While brownies are baking, in a medium bowl, break graham crackers into pieces; toss with marshmallows and milk chocolate bits. Sprinkle evenly over top of warm brownies and return to oven for an additional 10-15 minutes. Allow to cool before cutting.

Creamy lemon squares

20 Nilla Wafers, finely chopped

1/2 cup flour

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 cup cold butter

1 package cream cheese, softened

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

2 tablespoons flour

3 tablespoons lemon zest, divided

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

2 teaspoons powdered sugar

Line an 8-inch square pan with foil. Mix wafers, flour and brown sugar. Cut in cold butter until crumbly. Press into bottom of pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, beat cream cheese and sugar until creamed. Add eggs. Blend in flour, 1 tablespoon zest, juice and baking powder. Pour over crust. Bake an additional 25-28 minutes. Cool. Refrigerate 2 hours. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and remaining zest.

Raspberry Bundt cake

1 plain white cake mix

1 (10-ounce) box frozen red raspberries, thawed, or 1 1/4 cups crushed fresh berries, plus juice

4 eggs

2/3 cup salad oil

Mix all ingredients together and beat 2 minutes. Bake in greased Bundt pan (or loaf pan) at 325 degrees for 50-60 minutes. Drizzle with powdered sugar glaze when cool.

Strawberry bread from Preppy Kitchen

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 large egg

1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups plus 2 tablespoons flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cup diced fresh strawberries

Glaze:

3 tablespoons diced fresh strawberries

1 cup powdered sugar

1 teaspoon milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray loaf pan with baking spray.

In a medium bowl, whisk together sugar, milk, oil, egg and vanilla. In another medium bowl, stir together 2 cups flour, baking powder and salt. Add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture and stir until just moistened.

In a small bowl, combine strawberries and 2 tablespoons flour, tossing to coat. Fold strawberries into the batter. Pour batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake 55-60 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let the bread cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Remove bread from pan and cool completely on a wire rack.

For the glaze: Mash strawberries. Stir in powdered sugar and milk. Spoon evenly over cooled bread. Let stand for 30 minutes or until glaze sets before serving.

As their four children pursue dairy careers off the family farm, Natalie and Mark Schmitt started an adventure of milking registered Holsteins just because they like good cows on their farm north of Rice, Minnesota.

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