Dear SOS: Kennedy's in Long Beach serves the best chicken salad we've tasted. We have had no luck in prying the recipe from them. Would you please try?
--NATALIE Dear Natalie: Happy New Year.
KENNEDY'S CASHEW-CHICKEN SALAD 1 (2 1/2- to 3-pound) chicken
3/4 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup coarsely chopped salted cashews
1 cup sour cream
8 melon halves, optional
Season chicken inside and outside with salt and pepper. Bake at 350 degrees 1 1/2 hours or until very tender. Cool slightly. Bone and skin. Cut chicken meat into bite-size pieces. Combine chicken, celery, cashews and sour cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper if desired. Toss gently. Serve on bed of lettuce or in hollowed-out melon halves. Garnish with additional cashews. Makes 4 cups or 8 servings.
Dear SOS: Several years ago at the Brown Derby in Hollywood, I was served a delicious grapefruit cake. It was a white cake with grapefruit pieces between layers. I would appreciate the recipe.
--ANNE Dear Anne: The Brown Derby Grapefruit Cake has been such a popular cake throughout the years, we included it in our "The Los Angeles Times California Cookbook" (Abrams, $25 hard cover; New American Library, $9.95).
BROWN DERBY GRAPEFRUIT CAKE 1 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup oil
3 eggs, separated
3 tablespoons grapefruit juice
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
Cream Cheese Frosting
1 grapefruit, peeled and sectioned or 1 (1-pound) can grapefruit sections)
Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt into bowl. Make well in center and add water, oil, egg yolks, grapefruit juice and lemon peel. Beat until very smooth. Beat egg whites with cream of tartar until stiff but not dry. Gradually pour egg yolk mixture over egg whites and fold in gently until just blended. Do not stir. Turn batter into an ungreased 9-inch springform pan and bake at 350 degrees 30 minutes or until top springs back when touched lightly with finger. Invert onto rack and cool thoroughly. Loosen edges of cake carefully and remove from pan. With a serrated knife cut cake crosswise to make two layers. Reserve a few sections for frosting. Fill with part of Cream Cheese Frosting and grapefruit sections. Spread top and sides with frosting and decorate with additional fruit sections.
Cream Cheese Frosting 2 (3-ounce) packages cream cheese
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
3/4 cup sifted powdered sugar
6 to 8 drops yellow food color, optional
Reserved grapefruit sections
Soften cream cheese at room temperature. Beat until fluffy. Add lemon juice and peel. Gradually blend in sugar and beat until well blended. Stir in food color. Crush enough grapefruit sections to measure 2 teaspoons and blend into frosting.
Dear SOS: More than five years ago you published a recipe for Whistlestop Minestrone, which was excellent. But I find that I have lost the recipe. Can you help?
--FRANCES Dear Frances: The recipe comes from the Whistle Stop restaurant in Napa, Calif.
WHISTLE STOP MINESTRONE 1/4 cup chopped salt pork
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 large onion, chopped
7 cups water
7 chicken bouillon cubes or packets chicken seasoning mix
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 teaspoon basil
1 cup sliced carrots
1 cup sliced zucchini
1 cup sliced Italian green beans
1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, undrained
1 (1-pound) can stewed tomatoes, chopped
3/4 cup elbow or shell macaroni
Grated Parmesan cheese, optional
In large kettle, cook chopped salt pork until rendered. Add garlic and onion and saute until tender. Add water, bouillon cubes, parsley, celery, basil, oregano, carrots, zucchini, green beans, pinto beans with liquid and undrained tomatoes. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 1 hour. Add macaroni and cook 30 minutes or until macaroni is tender. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese, if desired. Makes 8 to 10 generous servings.
Note : Seasoning mix used by chef is called George Washington Golden Seasoning and Broth available in some markets.
Dear SOS: Some time ago you printed a recipe for Texas Style Meat Loaf, which had a topping of bacon strips and chili sauce. I have lost the recipe and my husband swears it was the best meat loaf he ever had. Can you help?
--CAROL Dear Carol: Thank you. Other readers have agreed with your husband.
SPICY TEXAS MEAT LOAF 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1/2 pound ground veal
1/4 pound ground pork
1/3 cup fine bread crumbs
1/4 cup minced shallots
1/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons green chile salsa
1 teaspoon minced basil
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1 teaspoon seasoned pepper
1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons chili sauce
2 slices bacon, halved
In large bowl combine beef, veal, pork, bread crumbs, shallots, milk, egg, salsa, basil, parsley, salt, pepper and soy sauce. Mix well. Shape into loaf in shallow baking pan. Spread chili sauce over top. Place bacon strips on top. Bake at 400 degrees 15 minutes. Reduce oven heat to 350 degrees. Bake 55 minutes longer. Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Only recipes of general interest will be printed. We are unable to answer all requests. Please include restaurant address when requesting recipes from restaurants. Send your letter with self-addressed, stamped envelope to Culinary SOS, Food Section, The Times, Times Mirror Square, Los Angeles 90053.