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President’s Day Cherry Feast: Create a Cherry Themed Dinner for this American Holiday

The legend of George Washington chopping down the cherry tree (it’s also been associated with Abraham Lincoln) may not be true but, cherries have become the traditional food of President’s Day. You know the story – the young man chopped down the cherry tree and when his angry father asked who did it, he confessed not being able to tell a lie. (Sounds like propaganda) In any case, it is nice to have a minor holiday that is dedicated to the flavor of cherries.

Here is a menu just for President’s day featuring cherries.

Cherry Cheeseball

Let’s start off with an appetizer that is really easy to make and delicious.

Ingredients:

  • 1 (8 ounce) package Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1 (10 ounce) package sharp white Cheddar Cheese, shredded
  • ½ cup dried cherries, chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ cup pecan pieces, toasted with a little butter and finely chopped.

Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl combine both cheeses by mashing with a fork until well blended.
  2. Stir in cherries and spice.
  3. Shape into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and put in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
  4. Before serving toast pecan pieces with a little butter in a skillet and let cool.
  5. Roll ball in chopped pecans and set on a plate to be served with crackers.

Cold Cherry Soup

The kids will think they are getting dessert first with this soup. It is pretty sweet so watch how much you give them.

Ingredients:

  • 1 (16 ounce) can pitted sour cherries
  • 1 – ½ teaspoon cornstarch
  • ½ cup cold water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 cup sour cream

Directions:

  1. Drain cherries but reserve the liquid placing it in a medium saucepan. Set cherries aside.
  2. In a mixing bowl combine cornstarch and cold water.
  3. Mix well and add to cherry liquid in saucepan.
  4. Boil for 5 minutes stirring constantly.
  5. The mixture will become clear and thicken.
  6. Add sugar and lemon juice.
  7. Make sure sugar dissolves and remove from heat.
  8. Chill completely (it is best to let it cool then refrigerate it overnight.)
  9. Add sour cream and drained cherries.
  10. Mix well and ladle into bowls to enjoy.

Sweet and Sour Cherry Chicken

This Asian dish is a twist on regular sweet and sour chicken. It also is sweet and most kids love it not to mention that the adults in the family that will ask for it over and over again.

Ingredients:

  • 2 to 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1 small onion, sliced thin
  • 4 boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1 large carrot, sliced thin
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon grated ginger (not the kind in the can – use a finger of ginger)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 cups pitted tart cherries
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds
  • Rice, cooked

Directions:

  1. In a skillet melt butter.
  2. Add garlic and onion and stir for about 3 minutes.
  3. Push to sides and add Chicken Breasts browning on all sides.
  4. Continue to cook chicken until done and juices run clear.
  5. Transfer to a plate and set aside. Add a little more butter to the skillet and throw in the carrot. Sauté for about 2 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, in a bowl combine broth, honey, soy, vinegar, and ginger.
  7. Pour in the skillet with the carrots.
  8. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer 10 minutes.
  9. Add cherries and simmer 5 more minutes.
  10. In a cup combine cornstarch with 1 tablespoon water.
  11. Stir into skillet and stir constantly for about 2 minutes or until thickened and bubbly.
  12. Stir in cherries and onions and heat through.
  13. Serve over hot cooked rice with almonds sprinkled on top.

Are you ready for dessert? How about something light.

Cherries in the Snow

This is so easy to make even the kids can do it.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Angle food cake (buy them in the grocery store)
  • 2 (16 ounce) cans cherry pie filling
  • 1 large size Non Dairy Whipping Cream

Directions:

  1. Pull the cake apart in chunks.
  2. Spread half the cake chunks in the bottom of a 9 x 13 x 2 inch cake pan.
  3. Put one can of cherry pie filling over top.
  4. Take half of the Non Dairy Whipping Cream and layer that on top.
  5. Now take a big spoon and squish it all down to make an even layer.
  6. Top this layer with more chunks of cake, another can of cherry pie fill and the rest of the Non Dairy Whipping Cream.
  7. Again, take your spoon and squish it down and even it out.
  8. Chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
  9. When ready to serve cut into squares and enjoy.

You may not get a lot of sleep the night you make this meal it is so sweet and delicious. But, President’s Day only comes once a year and your family will love these recipes.

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