Recipe of the Week – Yankee Salad

I spent the weekend in Des Moines with Stacie and while she and her friend were off shopping (my least favorite activity), I spent all day Saturday in the hotel working on paperwork and getting ready for this week’s catering jobs. A far more exciting activity in my opinion.

So I text Mark and asked him to send me his recipe of the week. Yankee Salad. OK? Not one I had heard of before, but that’s part and parcel to this experience for us: to try new things. So we do.

Then Monday rolled around and I took a look at his salad: he had made my favorite salad from our restaurant days!

Without realizing it – by using a different pasta – he had made Frog’s Eye Salad.

OK, technically not. He made Yankee Salad because of the pasta choice in this salad: Orzo. Here’s the recipe:Yankee Salad

The first time our salad lady made her version of this salad (frog eye salad), I was definitely skeptical. But that first taste then was the same as I got yesterday when I put the Yankee Salad in my mouth: Heaven. It was like coming home.

The chilled whipped topping held together by the Orzo pasta puts a completely different texture than you are expecting in your mouth. Then you throw in the mandarin oranges and the pineapple and you have your sweetness factor (I’m a huge sweet-eater) brought to the forefront.

Yankee SaladThis is a thick, heavier salad, mostly because the whipped topping chills and is thickened by the pasta. It doesn’t get that whipped, light taste that you expect a salad with whipped topping to have. I think that’s another thing I like about it, that it doesn’t conform to expectations of a whipped fruit salad.

What can I say? It reminded me of our days in the restaurant and begging Mark to make that salad for me even after we were no longer in the restaurant business.

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