Savory summer recipes


Below are a handful of savory summer recipes shared with The Tribune by home cooks across Cullman County. To submit a recipe, email


Sweet and Spicy Chicken (from Dodge City Mayor Tawana Canada)

Add to Instant-Pot and mix these ingredients:

  • 4 or 5 boneless chicken breasts cut into thirds
  • 1 can pineapple chunks with juice
  • 1 lg bell pepper cut into chunks
  • 1 red bell pepper cut into chunks
  • 2 onions cut into chunks
  • 1 can water chestnuts
  • Juice and zest from 1 lime
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. ginger
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup orange Juice
  • 2 tbsp. corn starch


  1. Cook on high pressure for 5 minutes.
  2. Release pressure and simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. Mix together 1/2 cup of orange juice with 2 tbsp. corn starch 
  4. Add to mixture to make sauce. Stir well. Cook another 3 minutes or until thickened.
  5. Serve over rice.

Mr. Guido’s Tomato Sauce (from Friends of the Public Libraries of Cullman County Secretary Renée Welsh)

Prep Time: 30 minutes | Cook Time: between 1-2 hours | Servings: 12 | Difficulty: Easy


  • 2 cans of whole tomatoes- 28 oz. sized cans
  • 2 small cans tomato paste
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic chopped
  • 8 oz. portabella mushrooms chopped
  • fresh or dried basil 3-5 tbsp.
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 pinch baking soda (baking soda is a base, reducing the acidity of the tomato)
  • 4 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan or Romano Cheese
  • 28 oz. water
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 pound hamburger meat (browned) (optional)


  1. Heat the olive oil in a 5+ qt. pot over medium heat, and add the onion and salt.
  2. Sauté for 10 minutes or so, stirring often and being careful not to burn it.
  3. Add the chopped or pressed garlic and chopped mushrooms.
  4. Heat for another 5 minutes, making sure not to burn the garlic, then add all the whole tomatoes, black pepper and basil. Stirring often, bring to a low boil.
  5. Immediately reduce heat to low and stir in the tomato paste and 28 oz. of water (use the empty tomato can). Simmer for 1-2 hours stirring every 30 minutes.  After the first 30 minutes, stir in the baking soda and pepper flakes and browned meat.
  6. For the first half of the simmer time, do so with the pot uncovered, then cover.
  7. After the 1-2 hours, add the cheese, stir in and continue simmer for 5 minutes.

Note: We add grated cheese to the sauce recipe for basic flavor. When typically served over pasta, you can add more cheese to the pasta and sauce mixture.


Marinated Cheese (from Friends of the Public Libraries of Cullman County Secretary Renée Welsh)

Note from Welsh: We have lived in over a dozen cities throughout the U.S. and outside this great nation. It was important to us to have a strong school system for our daughter, and a welcoming Catholic church which for us translated to a welcoming choir. Choir members love to get together to celebrate birthdays and holidays – just for any ole reason. This cheese and cracker dish has been served throughout the East Coast – many homes and Parish centers. And because of the greens and reds in the marinade – makes a spectacular Christmas presentation!

Prep time: 30-45 minutes

Refrigerate: 8 hours before servings


  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3 tbsp. minced green onions
  • 3/4 tsp. dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 jar (2 oz.) diced pimento, drained
  • 3 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley (not dried)
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 5/12 x 2 x 1 block (8 oz.) sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1 block of cream cheese (8 oz.) well chilled (not low-fat)


  1. Combine first 10 ingredients in a jar, cover and shake until well blended – set aside.
  2. Cut block of cheddar cheese in half – lengthwise.
  3. Cut cross-wise into 1/4 thick slices and set aside.
  4. Do the same with the cream cheese.
  5. Arrange slices alternately in a shallow dish and pour marinated mixture over slices.
  6. Cover and refrigerate for 8 hours.
  7. Transfer cheese slices onto a serving platter and pour marinade over all.
  8. Serve with assorted snack crackers.

Gin’s Zucchini Bread (from North Alabama Agriplex Youth Educator Nicole Taylor)


  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups zucchini, grated (do not peel, add to above)
  • 2 tsp. vanilla

Measure and sift into above ingredients:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 3 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • Add nuts if desired


  1. Pour into 2 greased bread pans (or 4 small mini pans).
  2. Bake at 325 for 1 hour.

Memaw Noodles (from Ellen Berry)

Note from Maggie Darnell: This is my own contribution. It’s my favorite thing my grandmother fixed when I was a kid. It brings nice memories and her cooking is like no other!


  • 1 package egg noodles (8 oz.)
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 soup can of milk (pour milk into used cream of chicken soup can and pour in)
  • 1 can chicken, shredded or pre-canned (if desired)
  • Black pepper


  1. Cook noodles until done; drain.
  2. Return to pan, stir in soup, milk and chicken.
  3. Heat through; add pepper to taste.


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