Celebrating a 32 year history, the Whitland Avenue 4th of July over delivered in every way. First of all, the weather was gorgeous with little humidity, a slight breeze and low temperatures. With an 11 AM kick off, the celebration looked like the quintessential Norman Rockwell painting with kids on bikes, babies in strollers, fashionistas dazzling in red, white and blue; I was proud to be an American. Some of the highlights of the day were: the symphony under Jay Dawson’s direction and their rendition of Somewhere Over the Rainbow, Chief Justice A.A .Birch’s heartfelt and humorous speech to the crowd, the amazing and FREE hot dogs (Hebrew Nationals) and finally, the contest for the best dessert and entree. Imagine being Carrington Fox and her illustrious judges wolfing down the numerous delicacies to meet an 11:45AM announcement deadline . Whew! It’s a tough job even if there was a breeze.
My neighbor Susan Trotman won 1st place for the Tomato, Basil and Cheese Pie. I entered my recipe a couple of years ago and only scored a 2nd place ribbon. If Angela Sandoval is a reader, I’m still trying to track down the recipe for your dessert. Please don’t tell us it’s an old family recipe and top secret. With tomatoes beginning to burst at the seams in the produce markets, I thought you may want to read the winning entree recipe. Also, get a glimpse of some of the fashionistas attending this venerable celebration. Pretty styling for a picnic. The 4th of July marks summer’s half way mark. So far, it’s been grand.
3/4 cup mayo
3/4 cup blue cheese, crumbled (or feta)
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Baked pie shell
Red onion, thinly sliced
Mix together and spread 1/3 mixture in bottom of baked pie shell. Layer thinly sliced red onion, crumbled bacon, tomato slices (salt and pepper the tomato), and fresh basil leaves. Then, layer the rest of the cheese mixture, onion, more crumbled bacon and fresh sliced tomato. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Sprinkle grated or shaved Parmesan over the top during the last five minutes of baking.