Labor Day and Julio: Options for some standby sides

 

Give potato salad a tangy twist with soy sauce, yogurt, cider vinegar and seasonings this Labor Day weekend. Flavor the holiday with variations to some family favorites.

Give potato salad a tangy twist with soy sauce, yogurt, cider vinegar and seasonings this Labor Day weekend. Flavor the holiday with variations to some family favorites. Photo by: tasteofhome.com

 

Jan Swoope

 

 

Labor Day weekends around my house growing up often meant patio dinners. I loved them. Today, I especially love the memories of them. Thinking back on those outdoor suppers evokes a warm, happy mash of extended family, laughter and my younger sister and I helping carry dishes to and fro. Labor Days also bring to mind Julio Iglesias, baked beans, potato salad and corn. More or less in that order. What a Latin heartthrob has to do with anything, you may wonder. Briefly, my music-loving father was a particular fan of the esteemed Spanish singer. Daddy had stereo speakers on the patio connected to the audio system in the house. For a long spell there, we seldom dined al fresco without accompaniment from Julio.

 

As for the baked beans, potato salad and corn, they were staples of those meals. Of course there were other dishes, meats and appetizers, but when Mama varied too much from our patio favorites, I'm pretty sure we young'uns put up a minor fuss.

 

When looking to this coming weekend, those standbys always feel homey to me. But that doesn't mean they have to always be prepared the same way. I sought out variations from a favorite online source that I think will suit my own pared-down 2020 Labor Day. Today, we've included recipe options for baked beans, potato salad and corn. I believe I'm going with the ranch potato salad, a creamy version with cheese, bacon and ranch dressing. The slow cooker sweet n' sour beans and the Parmesan corn on the cob sound tempting, too, although the baked corn dish shakes things up with vibrant flavors.

 

 

We may even play some Julio this weekend; it will do the next generations good. He is 76 now, and will never know the indelible place he holds in a Mississippi family's memory. But I do, that's enough.

 

Enjoy the holiday -- be safe, eat well, taste life.

 

 

SWEET 'N SOUR BEANS

 

Prep time: 20 minutes

 

Cook time: 3 hours

 

Makes 20 1/2-cup servings

 

 

8 bacon strips, diced

 

2 medium onions, halved and thinly sliced

 

1 cup packed brown sugar

 

1/2 cup cider vinegar

 

1 teaspoon salt

 

1 teaspoon ground mustard

 

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

 

1 can (28 ounces) baked beans, undrained

 

1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained

 

1 can (15 ounces) pinto beans, rinsed and drained

 

1 can (15 ounces) lima beans, rinsed and drained

 

1 can (15-1/2 ounces) black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained

 

 

  • In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove with slotted spoon to paper towels. Drain, reserving 2 tablespoons drippings. Saute onions in the drippings until tender. Add brown sugar, vinegar, salt, mustard and garlic powder. Bring to a boil.

     

  • In a 5-quart slow cooker, combine beans and peas. Add onion mixture and bacon; mix well. Cover and cook on high for 3-4 hours or until heated through.

     

    Nutrition Facts: 1/2 cup equals 210 calories, 6 g fat (2 g saturated fat), 9 mg cholesterol, 529 mg sodium, 33 g carbohydrate, 6 g fiber, 7 g protein.

     

    (Source: tasteofhome.com/Barbara Mena)

     

     

    TANGY POTATO SALAD

     

    Prep time: 25 minutes

     

    Cook time: 20 minutes + chilling

     

    Makes 9 servings

     

     

    2 pounds red potatoes, cubed

     

    2 hard-boiled large eggs, chopped

     

    1 small onion, chopped

     

    1 celery rib, chopped

     

    1/4 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise

     

    1/4 cup reduced-fat plain yogurt

     

    2 tablespoons cider vinegar

     

    2 tablespoons olive oil

     

    1 teaspoon reduced-sodium soy sauce

     

    1/2 teaspoon salt

     

    1/4 teaspoon celery seed

     

    1/4 teaspoon dried basil

     

    1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

     

    Dash garlic powder

     

    Dash ground mustard

     

     

  • Place potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Drain and cool.

     

  • Place potatoes in a large bowl. Add the eggs, onion and celery. In a small bowl, combine the remaining ingredients. Pour over potato mixture and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.

     

    Nutrition Facts: 3/4 cup: 148 calories, 7g fat (1g saturated fat), 50mg cholesterol, 235mg sodium, 18g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 2g fiber), 4g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 1 starch, 1 fat.

     

    (Source: tasteofhome.com/Michelle Gurnsey)

     

     

    RANCH POTATO SALAD

     

    Prep time: 30 minutes + chilling

     

    Makes 8 servings

     

     

    2 pounds red potatoes

     

    1 bottle (8 ounces) ranch salad dressing

     

    1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

     

    1 package (2.8 ounces) bacon bits

     

    1/4 teaspoon pepper

     

    Dash garlic powder

     

     

  • Place potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until tender, 20-25 minutes.

     

  • In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients (dressing will be thick). Drain potatoes and cut into cubes; add to the dressing and gently toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or until chilled. Refrigerate leftovers.

     

    Nutrition Facts: 1 cup: 316 calories, 22g fat (6g saturated fat), 27mg cholesterol, 649mg sodium, 20g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 2g fiber), 9g protein.

     

    (Source: tasteofhome.com/Lynn Breunig)

     

     

    BAKED CHILI-LIME CORN

     

    Prep time: 10 minutes

     

    Bake time: 35 minutes

     

    Makes 4 servings

     

     

    1/4 cup butter, melted

     

    2 tablespoons lime juice

     

    1-1/2 teaspoons grated lime peel

     

    1 teaspoon chili powder

     

    3/4 teaspoon seasoned pepper

     

    1/4 teaspoon salt

     

    4 medium ears sweet corn, cut into 3-inch pieces

     

     

  • In a small bowl, combine the first six ingredients. Place corn in a greased 13b-by-9-inch baking dish. Brush corn with half the butter mixture. Cover and bake at 400 F for 30 minutes.

     

  • Uncover; brush corn with remaining butter mixture. Bake, uncovered, for 5-10 minutes or until tender.

     

    Nutrition facts: 2 pieces: 182 calories, 13g fat (7g saturated fat), 30mg cholesterol, 248mg sodium, 19g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 3g fiber), 3g protein.

     

    (Source: tasteofhome.com/Lawrence Davis)

     

     

    PARMESAN CORN ON THE COB

     

    Prep/total time: 25 minutes

     

    Makes 4 servings

     

     

    1/4 cup butter, melted

     

    1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

     

    1/2 teaspoon Italian dressing

     

    4 ears corn on the cob

     

    1/4 cup water

     

    Salt, to taste

     

     

  • In a small bowl, combine the butter, cheese and Italian seasoning; set aside. Remove husks and silk from corn; place in a shallow microwave-safe dish. Add water. Cover and microwave on high for 7-10 minutes, turning once. Let stand for 5 minutes; drain. Brush with butter mixture; sprinkle with salt.

     

    Nutrition Facts: 1 each: 201 calories, 14g fat (8g saturated fat), 35mg cholesterol, 222mg sodium, 17g carbohydrate (5g sugars, 2g fiber), 5g protein.

     

    (Source: tasteofhome/Suzanne McKinley)

     

     

  • Jan Swoope is the Lifestyles Editor for The Commercial Dispatch.

     

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