Family Reunions: Food, Fun and Memories

We’re getting ready for the 110th Artley Family Reunion.  Our branch of the family is hosting the event this year in Middlebury, Indiana.  Lots of preparations are being made, the media have been alerted and the invitations have gone out.  We have games planned and are looking forward to visiting with family members we only see at this event.

One of the most important aspects of summer reunions and picnics is the food.  It is critical to keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold while serving at these gatherings.   We’re making memories and we want them to be happy ones!

Find food safety tips at www.befoodsafe.gov.   USDA reminds us about the four steps to food safety:  Clean, separate, cook, chill.

Clean:  Keep hands clean.  Wash before and after handling food and after using the restroom, touching pets, etc. Wash with soap and warm water for 20 seconds.

Separate:  Keep foods separate.  Use one cutting board for fresh produce and another for raw meat, poultry and seafood.

Cook:  Cook foods to the proper temperature and keep them hot—140 degrees F. while serving.  Use a heat source like a chafing dish, warming tray or slow cooker.

Chill:  Cold food should be kept at 40 degrees F. or less.  Keep food cold by nesting dishes in bowls of ice or use small serving trays and replace them often.· Perishable food should not be left out more than 2 hours at room temperature (1 hour when the temperature is above 90 °F).

Reunions Magazine www.reunionsmag.com recommends replacing empty platters with freshly filled ones on buffet lines.  Don’t add food to the serving dishes that have been sitting out.

Dorothy Viola’s Favorite Potato Salad

(With a twist:  Greek yogurt and sour cream)

Ingredients

  • 3 1/2  pounds potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 10 eggs
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cups celery, chopped
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  •  ½ cup sour cream
  • 1/3  cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup mustard
  • ¼ cup pickle relish
  • 1 Tablespoon celery seed
  • 3 large stems fresh rosemary, strip leaves from stems
  • course black pepper
  • celery salt
  • fresh parsley for garnish

Directions

  1. Place the potatoes and sweet potatoes in a large pan of water and boil over medium-low heat until tender, about 12 minutes. Drain the potatoes, and place in the refrigerator to cool.
  2. Place the eggs in a saucepan of cold water over medium heat, and bring to a full boil. Turn off the heat, cover the pan, and allow the eggs to sit in the hot water for about 15 minutes. Cool the eggs thoroughly under cold running water and shell them. Chop the cooled eggs and place them in a large salad bowl.
  3. Stir the onion, celery, yogurt, sour cream, mayonnaise, mustard, pickle relish, celery seed and fresh rosemary leaves into the eggs, and let the mixture chill in the refrigerator at least l/2 hour to blend the flavors. Mix in the chilled chopped potatoes, and refrigerate for at least 1/2 hour.  Season with course black pepper and celery salt to taste.  Garnish with fresh parsley.  Serve cold.

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