Thursday, June 21, 2007

Picnic by the River for June 20

The Lord gave us a beautiful evening for our picnic by the river this week. It was warm and sunny, but so breezy that I needed a sweater down by the water. We were able to get to our picnic spot about 10 minutes earlier than usual, too, which gave us time for a walk along the riverbank after we ate.

For this week’s picnic, I made hot ham & cheese sandwiches, sweet potato oven fries (an experiment that turned out well!) and also brought along 3-bean salad. I’ve discovered the 3-bean salad in a can, and it’s really very good. I believe Del Monte makes this, but I haven’t been able to find that in the stores here. I buy the Read brand at our local Super Walmart. It’s around 90¢ per can and we find that one can is just enough for the two of us. For the picnic, I transferred it to a covered plastic bowl and just brought along a slotted spoon.

For the sandwiches and fries, I didn’t really use a recipe, so I’ll just tell you what I did.


The amount of ingredients really depends on how many people you want to serve. These are the ingredients I used for 4 sandwiches:

1 1/2 Tblsp. light butter spread
1 Tblsp. horseradish mustard (I used the kind containing whole mustard seeds)
1 tsp. dried instant minced or chopped onion
6 slices deli ham (8 slices would be better, but 6 is what I had)
Approximately 1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese
4 hamburger buns

In a custard cup, stir together the butter, mustard and onion. Divide this equally among the cut sides of the hamburger buns. On one side of each bun, layer 1 1/2 slices of ham, folding slices if necessary to better fit the bun. On the other side, sprinkle about 2 Tblsp. of shredded Swiss. Put the 2 halves of the bun together and wrap in foil. Place on a baking sheet and bake 20-30 minutes at 350º.


Again, this is what I did to serve the 2 of us. You could surely double, triple or quadruple the ingredients to serve your group.

1 large sweet potato
1 Tblsp. olive oil
1/4 to 1/3 cup flavored dry bread crumbs
1 Tblsp. Parmesan cheese
Dash or two of salt
Dash of cayenne pepper

Peel the sweet potato and cut into wedges. The sweet potato I had was quite large, so I cut it into thirds horizontally and then cut each third into 8 wedges. Place the wedges in a ziplock bag -- I recommend the gallon size -- with the olive oil; seal the bag and shake well to coat the wedges with oil. Then add the remaining ingredients to the bag; seal and shake again so the wedges are coated lightly with the crumb mixture. Arrange on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake at 350º for 50 to 60 minutes.

For the picnic, I wrapped up the finished fries in their foil, and placed them and the foil-wrapped sandwiches in a small insulated bag. It kept them nice and hot.

So that is this week’s picnic. What a breath of fresh air it was in the midst of a busy week to just sit by the river and take in the beauty of God’s creation!

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