The first time I attempted lady fingers, they looked a lot more like thumbs, but the taste was delicious. I decided I should just make Madeleines. They, too, are delicious and buried in creamy fruit salad do not have to be pretty. Anticipating the holiday parties, it might just be the hit of the meal.

Fresh tomatoes off the vine in your garden won’t be here for the holidays, so enjoy them in this tangy salad now.

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of the home bakers who entered the baked goods competition at the Blue Ribbon Country Fair last week. Y’all outdid yourselves and picking a winner was no small task. Although it was a delicious task. Keep on baking and planning your entries for next year. Those of you who didn’t enter this year, please consider next year!

Fruit n’ Cream

1 1/2 cups half and half

1 (3.4 ounce) French vanilla instant pudding mix

3/4 cup sour cream

1/3 cup frozen (thawed) orange juice concentrate

2 (11-ounce) cans Mandarin oranges, well drained

1 (20-ounce) can pineapple tidbits, well drained

1 (15-ounce) can sliced peaches, well drained

2 sweet/tart apples, diced

In a large bowl, prepare pudding mixture. Add fruit to pudding mixture; stir gently to combine. Chill until serving time.

Club Wrap

For the spread:

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder

1/4 teaspoon onion powder

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

Pinch of cumin

In a small bowl, whisk together. Cover and set aside to blend flavors.

Spread thinly on the tortilla, flavor of your choice.

Layer: lettuce, tomato, crisp bacon, thinly sliced deli ham and turkey, thinly sliced cheddar and Swiss cheeses. Wrap tightly, but diagonally through the center. Enjoy!

Madeleines

3 eggs, separated

1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

1/4 cup sugar

1/3 cup sugar

3 tablespoons water

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

3/4 cup all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

In a mixing bowl, beat egg whites with cream of tartar until foamy. Add the 1/4 cup sugar, one tablespoon at a time. Beat on high speed about six minutes.

In a mixing bowl, beat yolks with 1/3 cup sugar three minutes. Add water and extracts.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Stir into yolk mixture. Fold batter into egg whites, carefully and thoroughly.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a baking sheet or spray parchment paper lightly with Bakers’s Joy.

For lady fingers:

Put mixture in a piping bag and pipe onto the prepared baking sheet in ‘fingers’ about two inches long.

For Madeleines:

If you don’t have a Madeleine pan, drop batter onto the prepared baking sheet by heaping tablespoonfuls and spread a little with the back of the spoon.

Bake 10-12 minutes or until very lightly golden around the edges. Cool on the pan five minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack. Store, tightly covered in the refrigerator.

Tomato Salad

Thickly sliced tomatoes, about two for each guest

Lettuce leaves

Chopped sweet or green onions

Chopped parsley

1/2 cup oil

2-3 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 garlic clove, grated

1/4 teaspoon mustard powder

1 teaspoon herb blend of your choice (Italian is my preference)

Salt and pepper to taste

In a medium bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar, garlic, mustard powder, herb blend, salt and pepper. Set aside a few minutes to blend flavors.

Layer lettuce leaves on an appropriate size platter. Arrange tomatoes over lettuce. Pour most of the dressing over the tomatoes. Garnish with onions and parsley. Drizzle remaining dressing over all. Serve immediately.

The options are limitless for filling the tortilla for these club wraps. If I added all the items I thought of, you would have to eat it flat. Onions, mushrooms, avocados, marinated artichoke hearts, thinly sliced rotisserie chicken and thinly sliced roast beef.

For vegetarian preferences, omit the meats and add paper thin slices of summer squash, zucchini and carrots.

Build one with your favorite foods. Add extra lettuce and you’ll have salad too.

Miss Olivia Sipe is the owner of Miss Olivia’s Table in Maryville.

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