Take a weekend to celebrate (or mourn?) the end of summer, a chance to holler "Take This Job And Shove It", fire up the smoker and the grill, invite a bunch over to chow down and have fun! Then get ready to knuckle down to Fall happenings and of course School "Daze"!

Here are some suggestions to really brighten up that party!
Sparkling Sangria
Blueberry Lemonade
Canapes For a Crowd
Baked Cheese and Chile Squares
Fresh Corn Soup
Oriental Salad
Bacon Burrito Dogs
Spicy Barbequed Hotdogs
Red River Burgers
Sausage and Beef Burgers
Pork Spiedis
Grilled Cowboy Steaks
Grilled Corn on the Cob
Lone Star Baked Beans
Hidden Valley Potato Salad
Country Cucumber Salad
Moomie's Beautiful Burger Buns
Decadent Fudge Cake
SPARKLING SANGRIA
Mix up a huge jug of this for everyone to sip on and cool off with while that grill is smokin'!

1/4 cup Sugar
1/4 cup Water
1 Lime
1 Orange
1/2 Lemon
1 bottle Dry White Wine (25.4 oz.)
1 tablespoon Grand Marnier
1 cup Club Soda Water -- chilled

In a small saucepan, combine sugar and water. Cut off ends of fruits; add ends to mixture in saucepan. Bring to boil; boil 3 minutes. Cool; discard ends. Cut remaining lime, orange and lemon into thin slices. In a 1-1/2 quart container, combine sugar-water mixture, wine and the Grand Marnier liqueur; mix well. Add fruit slices; refrigerate. Just before serving, add club soda and stir gently.

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BLUEBERRY LEMONADE
Then make up a big jug of this for the young'uns and the designated drivers!
Recipe By: Bobby Flay (Food TV Network)

3 cups blueberries
3/4 cups sugar
2 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice
3 cups cold water
Ice cubes

Place the blueberries and sugar in a blender and puree. Place the lemon juice and water in a pitcher and strain the pureed blueberries through a medium mesh sieve into the pitcher. Stir well and pour into tall icefilled glasses. Yield: 4 servings but should be easy to double or triple.

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CANAPÉS FOR A CROWD
Kathy of "Kathy's Korner" send this out to all her friends as one of her Recipes Of The Week. These are really yummy minchies.

1 pound lead ground beef
1 pound hot or mild bulk pork sausage
1 pound Velveeta cheese -- cubed
1/2 package dry onion soup mix
2 loaves cocktail-size rye bread
In a large skillet, brown ground beef and sausage until no longer pink, breaking up lumps with a fork; drain off fat and liquid. Add cubes of Velveeta and soup mix. Stir constantly over low heat until Velveeta is melted. Spread on the rye bread. Serve immediately, or to freeze for later use, place canapes on cookie sheets and place in the freezer. When frozen, put them in freezer bags or freezer containers. To re-heat, bake in a preheated 350F oven for 10 to 15 minutes.
VARIATIONS:
1. Add a dash of Tabasco sauce to perk it up.
2. Substitute taco seasoning or Mexican seasoning for the onion soup mix.
3. Add some Italian seasoning.
P.S. Be sure to check out Kathy's website---lotsa terrific recipes. Her link is on my Links Page.

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BAKED CHEESE AND CHILE SQUARES
I don't remember where this came from, but these li'l guys are really great; and don't worry, they're not real spicy. For an outdoor party, BBQ or picnic, keep the pan covered with foil and chilled. To re-heat, place einto a 350-degree oven 15-20 minutes or onto a side burner of your grill.
Yields 8-9 squares

3 cups shredded Montery Jack cheese
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
2 cans chopped green chiles (4 oz.ea.)
1 small tomato -- diced
2 eggs
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
Preheat oven to 375 degrees; Liberally grease an 8-inch square baking pan. In a bowl, combine the cheeses and spread half on the bottom of the prepared pan. Sprinkle with the chiles and top with the diced tomato; top evenly with remaining cheese. In a bowl, whisk the eggs; then whisk in the flour. Pour over the cheese and bake 30 minutes or until set. Cut into squares and serve warm.

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FRESH CORN SOUP
I found this in Gourmet Magazine last year. It's a terrific way to use up the last of the fresh corn, serve a crowd, and keep it simple to boot! Great served, hot, at room temperature, or even sort of "coolish".
Serves: 6

8 cups fresh corn kernels (10-14 ears)
1 tablespoon kosher or sea salt
6 cups water
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
Simmer corn with salt in water, covered, 20 minutes or until very tender. Puree soup in batches in a blender until very smooth (use caution blending hot liquids). Pour puree through a coarse sieve, pressing on solids, into a saucepan. Reheat soup, stirring a few minutes. If soup is too thick, thin with a little cream or water. Serve sprinkled with chives.

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ORIENTAL SALAD
This recipe was sent to me a few years ago by my good friend "Albedo". It's a great way to perk up any meal but especially great to accent an outdoor get-together!
Serves: 10

2 bunches Green Onions, tops only -- chopped
1 bunch Green Leaf Lettuce -- shredded
1 bunch Red Leaf Lettuce -- shredded
1 head Iceberg Lettuce -- shredded
3 packages Oriental Rice Noodles (ramen) -- crushed
1/2 cup Sesame Seeds
DRESSING:
2/3 cup Vegetable Oil
1/3 cup Sesame Oil
1/4 cup Rice Vinegar
1/4 cup Red Wine Vinegar
1/2 flavor pack from Oriental Noodles
1/2 cup Sugar
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Pepper
Place washed and dried greens and remaining ingredients into a large bowl; mix well. In medium bowl, combine all dressing ingredients; mix well. Pour dressing over salad; toss gently and serve.

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BACON BURRITO DOGS
The young 'uns in the crowd will love these! This is about as close as anyone can come to the ones you can get at Pink's Famous Chili in L.A.

For each serving, you will need:
1 (12-inch) flour tortilla
2 premium all-beef hot dogs, steamed or grilled
2 slices American cheese
1/3 cup chili (homemade is best, but Texas Pete will do fine)
3 slices crisp-cooked bacon
2 tablespoons diced onions
On a flour tortilla, place all ingredients, in the order listed. Begin rolling-up tightly, folding top and bottom in and over the ingredients to form a sealed envelope.

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SPICY BARBEQUED HOT DOGS
Nothin' more to say about these----just totally yummy! Vary the toppings to whatever you like.
Serves: 8

2 large kosher dill pickles (about 1/2 cup) -- finely chopped
1/3 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1/3 cup commercial barbecue sauce
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
8 large German-style hot dogs or kielbasa
8 large hot dog buns
2 tablespoons melted butter
Preheat grill. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine pickle, red pepper, onion, barbecue sauce, vinegar and Tabasco sauce. Cut 3 small 1/8"-deep slits in the top of franks and place on the grill over hot coals. Grill 9-10 minutes. Meanwhile, brush cut sides of hot dog buns with melted butter; place on the cool side of the grill during the last 2 minuntes of grilling. To serve, place one hot dog in each bun and top with barbecue sauce mixutre.

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RED RIVER BURGERS
Careful with these----not exactly for wimps! Those chiles are hot! Feel free to cut down on the amounts if you wish.
Serves: 4

1/2 cup finely chopped green or white onions
2 tablespoons dry bread crumbs
2 red or green serrano chiles, seeded -- minced
3 canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce -- minced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 pound lean ground beef
4 hamburger buns -- split or 8 1"-thick slices Italian bread -- toasted
Roasted red pepper ketchup or other flavored ketchup -- optional
Pickled green tomatoes -- optional
Sliced red onion -- optional
Chopped red serrano chiles -- optional
In a large mixing bowl combine green onion or white onion, bread crumbs, serrano peppers, chipotle peppers, and salt. Add beef; mix well. Shape meat mixture into four 3/4-inch-thick patties.

Grill hamburger patties on the rack of an uncovered grill directly over medium coals for 12 to 14 minutes, or until no pink remains, turning once. To grill bread or buns, brush lightly with olive oil or margarine. Grill directly over medium coals for 30 seconds to 1 minute or until just toasted, turning once. Serve burgers on grilled or toasted bread or buns with desired catsup, green tomato slices, red onion slices, and serrano chiles, if desired.

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SAUSAGE AND BEEF BURGERS
I can't lay claim to this one----it was published by Tennessee Pride Sausage Company; BUT, I DO use Jimmy Dean instead---I just like it better.
Serves: 10-12

1 pound bulk pork sausage
2 pounds ground beef chuck
1/4 cup minced onions
2 cloves garlic -- mashed with salt
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon coarse-ground black pepper
Favorite burger toppings
In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients and mix gently with hands. Form into 10-12 patties; place on waxed-paper-lined sheet pan, cover and chill at least 1 hour and up to 3 hours. Grill, broil or fry in a skillet 5-6 minutes per side or to desired doneness. Serve with everyone's favorite toppings.

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PORK SPEIDIS
Spiedis (pronounced "speed-eez") are considered a specialty in New York where a Spiedi-Fest is held in August, featuring this dish made of all different kinds of meat. Beatrice Riddell of Chenango Bridge, New York, sent this to Taste of Home Magazine; her specialty is pork.
Serves: 1

4 pounds Pork Tenderloin -- cut in 1" cubes
2 cups V-8 vegetable juice
2 large Onions -- Finely chopped
6 cloves Garlic -- minced
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon Dried Basil
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Pepper
12 slices Italian bread
Combine first 7 ingredients in bowl; cover and refrigerate overnight. Drain, discarding marinade. Thread pork onto small skewers. Grill or broil for 15-20 minutes, turning occasionally until meat is no longer pink and pulls away from skewers. To serve, wrap a slice of bread around about five pork cubes and pull off skewer.

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GRILLED COWBOY STEAKS
Definitely for the beef-lovers in the crowd, this is super! Out west where I'm from, this would feed only one....welllll, maybe two. If you want it all yourself, invite vegetarians to your party! Plan a day ahead for this.
Serves: 2-4 depending on crowd hunger

1 2-pound prime porterhouse steak
CHIPOTLE PASTE:
8 cloves roasted garlic
6 tablespoons chipotle chile powder
6 tablespoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon coarse-ground black pepper
6 tablespoons peanut oil
Combine all chipotle paste ingredients in a bowl to form a paste. Rub paste into both sides of the meat thoroughly. Place meat in tightly sealed plastic bag and refrigerate 4-8 hours. Prepare charcoal or wood fire in the grill. Grill steak over hot coals 10 minutes on one side, and 8 minutes on the other side (for medium-rare). Do not overcook. Allow meat to rest 5 minutes before slicing and serving.

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CAJUN GRILLED CORN ON THE COB
Might as well throw some of these on the grill while everything is cooking! Just make sure the corn is as fresh as you can get it!
Serves: 12

1/2 cup Butter -- softened
1 cup chopped fresh Parsley
2 cloves Garlic -- minced
1/2 teaspoon Salt
2 teaspoons Red Pepper flakes
12 ears Sweet Corn -- husked
In a small bowl, combine first 5 ingredients until well-blended. Spread about 1 tablespoon on each ear of corn; wrap individually in heavy- duty aluminum foil. Grill 12-15 minutes over medium coals, turning frequently.

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LONE STAR BAKED BEANS
This was published in the 2/23/97 issue of the Sunday Parade Magazine; it's their version of Texas beans. Anyway, who cares----they're really yummy!
Serves: 8

1 pound dried Navy Beans
6 ounces slab Bacon -- cut in 1/2" cubes
1 large Onion -- chopped
1 Red Bell Pepper -- cut in 1/4" dice
1 Green Bell Pepper -- cut in 1/4" dice
1/2 pound cooked smoked Ham -- cut in 1/4" dice
1 smoked Pork Chop -- cut in 1/4" dice
1 can Plum Tomatoes (28 oz.), juices reserved -- drained and chopped
1 cup Ketchup
3/4 cup Dark Brown Sugar
1/4 cup Honey
1/4 cup Molasses
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon Colemans Dry Mustard
1 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon coarse-ground Black Pepper
2 tart Apples, peeled and cored -- cut in 1" cubes
Soak beans overnight; drain and rinse. Put beans into large kettle; add water to cover by 2 inches. Bring to a boil; lower heat and simmer 45 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In an ovenproof Dutch oven, cook bacon over low heat until fat is rendered; remove bacon and set aside. Add onion to pot; cook 10 minutes. Add peppers; cook 5 minutes. Add reserved beans and bacon, plus all remaining ingredients except apples and reserved tomato juice; mix well. Cover; bake 2 hours. Add apples and 1/2 cup of reserved tomato juice; bake uncovered 2 hours. Serve hot.

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HIDDEN VALLEY POTATO SALAD
Nothing could be easier or quicker than this---plus, there's no worry about mayo if you're outside!
Serves: 6

1 pound small red potatoes -- unpeeled
1/2 cup sliced green onions
1 cup Hidden Valley Original Ranch with Bacon
Paprika
Chopped chives
Scrub potatoes and place them whole into a medium saucepan; cover with water, add salt and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain thoroughly; cut into 1-inch cubes and place into a serving bowl. Add green onions and dressing; toss gently. Dust top with paprika; garnish with chives if desired. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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COUNTRY CUCUMBER SALAD
Nothin' fancy---easy as pie! And so refreshing on a hot afternoon.
Serves: 6

2 Cucumbers, unpeeled
1 Onion -- thinly sliced
1/2 cup White Vinegar
1/4 cup Sugar
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1/8 teaspoon Pepper
Slice cucumbers crosswise very thinly (use a slicing machine or a mandoline if available); put into glass serving dish. Add onion and mix well. Whisk remaining ingredients in small bowl until sugar is dissolved; pour over cucumbers and onions and mix well. Cover and refrigerate at least 24 hours before using, stirring occasionally.

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MOOMIE'S BEAUTIFUL BURGER BUNS
This is a special recipe from Moomie, a great friend on King Arthur Flour's "Baking Circle" message board. A bunch of us has tried these, and everyone has gone crazy for these delicious buns. The flavor and texture is out of this world! You'll never buy another plastic bag of squishy buns again!
Make these in your bread machine as Moomie does, or by the manual/mixer method as I do. The key to success is to remember that soft rolls require soft dough. It's easy to double---everything can be increased by the same proportions.

Yields 8-10 buns or one 8-1/2x4-1/2 loaf

3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (King Arthur's) *
1/4 cup sugar
3 teaspoons instant yeast
1/2 teaspoon dried onion flakes or 1 tsp.onion powder -- optional
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter -- melted
1 egg
1 cup warm water (100-105 deg.)

Manual/Mixer Method: In a mixing bowl, place flour, sugar, yeast, onion flakes or onion powder if used, and salt; mix well with paddle attachment of mixer. Add egg and melted butter; begin mixing on low with paddle attachement. Gradually add water; mix dough until well-combined. If kneading by hand, turn dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead about 15 minutes or until smooth and elastic (dough should still be quite soft). If kneading by mixer, change to dough hook and knead 3-4 minutes, adding flour or warm water as needed, until dough is soft, smooth and elastic. Place dough into an oiled bowl; cover with plastic wrap and set aside until doubled in size.

Bread Machine Method: Place ingredients into bread machine in the order required by manufacturer. Let the machine run its complete cycle. Turn out onto floured surface and knead by hand 1-2 minutes until dough feels "right".

Divide the dough into 8 or 10 pieces. Moomie says "Slap the dough 4-5 times into bun shape, about 7" in diameter"; or shape into rounds for dinner rolls. Put buns on a lightly oiled cookie sheet and let rise about 30-40 minutes. Bake in 375-degree oven 12-15 minutes or until golden.

For burgers, split buns horizontally, butter cut surfaces and fry in butter in a large skillet.

----------------------- For Bread: Keep dough in one piece, shape into a loaf and place into an oiled 9-inch loaf pan. Use a shine-y 9 inch aluminum pan, bake the loaf at 350 for 35 minutes exactly. As soon as it's pulled it from the oven, turn it out onto a wire wrack and brush the entire surface with butter. YUMMY!!!!

--------------------- For fabulous mini-buns or dinner rolls: It's our favorite! When I do dinner rolls, I divide the dough into 12 pieces, put it into a greased 9x11 inch pan, bake at 375 for about 15 minutes. They are high light and squishy!!!!

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DECADENT FUDGE CAKE
I got this as an advertisement in the mail for Southern Living "Five-Star Recipe Collection" (8/96) ----if anybody ever gets through all this decadence, it will be time for a diet!! It's wonderful and a perfect way to end a perfect party day!!
Serves: 12-14

1 cup Butter or Margarine -- softened
1 1/4 cups Sugar
4 Eggs
1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 cup Buttermilk
2 1/2 cups All-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups Semisweet Chocolate Mini-morsels -- divided
2 bars Sweet Baking Chocolate (4 oz.each) -- melted and cooled
1/3 cup Chocolate Syrup
2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
4 ounces White Chocolate -- chopped
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons Shortening -- divided
Preheat oven to 300 degrees; Heavily grease and flour a 10-inch Bundt pan. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter until fluffy; gradually add sugar, beating at medium speed of electric mixer. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Dissolve baking soda in buttermilk, stirring well. Add to creamed mixture alternately with flour, beginning and ending with flour. Add 1 cup of the mini-morsels, the melted chococlate, chocolate syrup and vanilla; stir just until blended (do not overbeat). Spoon batter into prepared baking pan; bake 1 hour and 25-35 minutes, or until cake springs back when touched. Immediately invert cake onto a serving plate and let cool completely.

Combine 4 ounces choped white chocolate and 2 tablespoons of the shortening in top of a double boiler; bring water to a boil. Reduce heat to low; cook until mixturwe is melted and smooth. Remove from heat. Drizzle melted white chocolate mixture over cooled cake. Melt remaining 1/2 cup mini-morsels and 2 teaspoons shorening in a small saucepan over lopw heat, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat and let cool. Drizzle over white chocolate.

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