sweet and sour slaw

A sweet and sour slaw recipe

‘Twas 1976

I was just a tot of 9 when this recipe was published.

Not that I remember or should remember, but I’ve developed a sixth sense affectionately termed “internet stalking.” Rather than use my acquired skills for ill will, I use my skills for the betterment of nostalgic foodie-ism. Which brings me to this recipe.

I really had no reason to turn over the “sweet and sour slaw” recipe (see the two-sided scan below) Mom had apparently torn from a magazine. But “curious me” did turn it over!

Reading the recipe’s back revealed an authors name “James Farrell.” And his book, “The Dunne Family.” In two clicks I found the book’s publish year of 1976, our nation’s bicentennial. Keying in a few words from the article – specifically “james farrell 1976 it was late afternoon when we picked up our boat in Newton Falls” and I was taken to this. A scan of the article which revealed it was from the May 2, 1976 issue of FAMILY WEEKLY.

A scan of the May 2, 1976 issue of FAMILY WEEKLY showing Melissa Gilbert and her two Moms.I then found this black and white of the original cover that was from Florida (I think each city just printed their name on the front). Little House on the Prairie star Melissa Gilbert was on the cover with her two Moms. Melissa was a kid-time favorite of mine – bonnet and all. <– Shakes head, but true!

This recipe was a great find! It’s a kissing-cousin of cole slaw and the dressing is what makes it truly unique. Pineapple and lemon juice are the key dressing ingredients that make this crunchy salad a reacquired family favorite.

Hopefully this story reminds us all that sometimes things are greater than their initial face value. Turning over a stone here and there can be a good thing. In this case, I discovered another publication my Mom read when I was too young to take notice … plus I was able to reignite fond memories of a childhood friend … in just a few clicks.

foodie tips ~

  Unless you’re feeding a small village or love cabbage, I’d suggest easily “halving” this recipe! There were easily 15-25 servings based on the original recipe. I was eating slaw for days! The hips do not lie.

♥  This stored extremely well in the fridge. I think the flavors were able to buddy-up and become BFFs. At least that’s what my taste buds say.

  Whenever possible, use fresh ingredients vs. canned – in this case use fresh bean sprouts as I’ve never seen fresh water chestnuts.

i. ingredients

2 ½ pounds | cabbage, shredded
2 cans (16 ounces) | bean sprouts, drained
2 cans (8.5 ounces) | water chestnuts, drained and thinly sliced
1 ½ cups | mayonnaise
6 tablespoons | lemon juice
 cups | unsweetened pineapple juice
2 teaspoons | salt
1 ½ cups | onion, finely chopped
2 cans (4 ounces) | pimiento, drained and diced

ii. what to do

1. In a large bowl mix cabbage, sprouts and chestnuts. Cover and chill in the fridge.

2. Combine mayo, pineapple juice, lemon juice, salt and onion.

3. Pour dressing over the chilled veggies and toss until well coated.

4. Stir in the pimientos and serve!

Yields: 4 Quarts. QUARTS!

A scan of Mom's original sweet and sour slaw recipe

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egg roll casserole

tasty egg roll casseroleStop. Drop. And Egg Roll.

Before P.F. Chang’s, there was “King Wah”.

King Wah was the nicest Chinese food restaurant I had ever been to… until years later when my cousin Melissa married in San Francisco; after the ceremony we ate at a fancy Chinese food restaurant called the Empress of China, which was a beaut.

Flash back 1980s. King Wah was located in a white office building at the SE corner of Loop 410 and Wurbach road (1800 NE Loop 410) in my childhood home town of San Antonio.

Inside King Wah you’d findchop! chop! here are some of the ingredients for egg roll casserole.
white table cloths, fancily dressed wait staff and large round tables that the expanded family would gather around. Why, there must have been 10-12 of us feeding at a single table! While I only ate at King Wah with my Aunt Sister, Uncle Bill and the wolf pack (my cousins), it was one of the few times I can remember that felt more Thanksgiving than mere Chinese dining. King WOW!

Today I live precisely 270.42 miles from where King Wah was located. But thanks to this savory lip-smacking recipe featuring the egg roll, I can relive the mouth-watering memories growing up… and the taste of the exotic orient. I will be eating this again!

享受  (that’s chinese for “enjoy!”)

Let’s Roll!

i. ingredients

2 tablespoons | soy sauce
chinese pea pods in a pan - YEAH!2 tablespoons | dry sherry
1 teaspoon | sugar
½ teaspoon | salt
1 pound | beef round, cut into thin 4 x 3/4-inch strips
¼ cup | vegetable oil
1 package | frozen chinese pea pods, partly thawed
2 cups | celery, thinly sliced
1 cup | scallions, finely chopped
16-ounce can | bean sprouts, drained and rinsed
16-ounce can | condensed beef consomme
2 tablespoons | cold water
2 tablespoons | cornstarch
2 5-ounce packages | frozen egg rolls

ii. what to do

0. Preheat oven to 250°F.

1. Combine soy sauce, sherry, sugar and salt. Add to beef strips and ross to coat with mixture. Let stand 15 minutes, turning occasionally.

2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large skillet over moderate heat. Add Chinese pea pods and cook until pods have separated from one another and they’re tender crisp, about 2 minutes. Remove pea pods from skillet and reserve.

on the stovetop...mmmmm!

3. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of the oil to the skillet. Add beef strips and cook, stirring occasionally, until the beef loses its pink color.

4. Add celery, scallions, bean sprouts and consomme. Reduce heat to low (about 225°F). Cook, covered, a few minutes until vegetables are almost tender.

5. Stir cold water slowly into the cornstarch and add to skillet mixture.

6. Blend well and heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is smooth and thickened. Pour into a greased 1½-quart shallow casserole.

7. Cut egg rolls in half lengthwise and place spoke-fashion on middle top of casserole. Arrange cooked pea pods at edges of casserole.egg roll casserole in a bowl

8. Place in a preheated 350°F oven for about 25 minutes, or until rolls are crisp on top. Serve with rice, if desired?

Foodie Tips ~

♥ While the egg roll flavor was not specified, because this recipe calls for beef round, I suggest a simple veggie egg roll to accompany the beef.

 What’s a “Chinese Pea Pod?” It’s also known as a Snow Pea or a Sugar Pea. Technically they’re different than edamamme (a sweet bean). You’re likely to find them frozen vs. fresh at your local grocery.

“Serve with rice, if desired?” Of course it’s desired! Get outta my way ~ I’m hongry!   

mom's egg roll casserole recipe