Whisk It Wednesday: Never too many cooks

Good Food, Good Fun


  • 5 brothers
  • 5 wives of the brothers
  • 5 hours at a lake cabin
  • Great food and good fun (too much to quantify)


My husband’s four brothers are scattered here and there across the country, but once each summer they make it a point to get together.

One brother volunteers to be the host, and along with his wife, they make a plan.

This year we all met at a lake cabin owned by one brother and his wife. This brother would make the grilled steaks that he is famous for. The wife would make a salad and twice-baked potatoes. The rest of us each recieved a food assignment.

I brought Rosy Radish Dip and fresh vegetables to snack on before the meal.

L made a wonderful fresh green salad with strawberries, oranges, green onions and caramelized almond slices. She offered two dressings that she had made — one was poppyseed dressing, the other, lemon grass vinaigrette. See that bottle with the white cap on the table? That’s the lemon grass dressing. It’s the one I chose. So light and fresh tasting, with just a hint of lemon. L got the recipe from a friend who got the recipe from a restaurant in Arizona. The restaurant recipe was enough to feed hundreds with a gallon of oil and 10 pounds of lemon grass. L has learned to blend the ingredients together (in much smaller amounts), tasting as she goes, until it tastes just right.


 Lemon Grass Vinaigrette

(inspired by a vinaigrette served at Tonto Verde in Arizona)

  • 2 1/2 pounds chopped lemon grass (My sister-in-law buys frozen chopped lemon grass at an Asian market)
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 1 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 cups apple cider
  • 2 cups lemon juice
  • 4 cups canola oil

Blend extremely well. Let stand for 24 hours, then strain twice. Shake well before using.

Host brother, J, grilled steaks that had been marinating overnight in the refrigerator. He seared the meat, sealing in the juices and giving the meat some great grill marks. And then he did his magic, making sure each steak was cooked just the way each person had ordered.

Marinade for Steak

  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • Garlic powder or fresh garlic
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar

Blend ingredients together. Pour over tenderloins. Marinate in refrigerator overnight.

My steak was so tender, it melted in my mouth. The flavor was incredible. Twice-baked potatoes were the perfect accompaniment for the steaks. My sister-in-law, J, made a wonderful salad with peas, green beans and white corn kernels. I’m waiting for the recipe.

And, of course, no family meal is complete without dessert. My sister-in-law, S, was assigned to bring a dessert. She said she went to her recipe box and found a recipe that came from our mother-in-law, Mary. I’ve shared some of her delicious creations with you at other times. Mary was a great cook and was always willing to share her recipes.

With full tummies and tired from an afternoon of sunshine and lake air, we said our good-byes and all headed home. Until next summer. Then, we’ll do it again.

 Mary’s Raspberry Dessert

  • 2 (10 oz.) packages frozen raspberries in syrup
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 4 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ¼ cup cold water
  • 50 large marshmallows
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1 ¾ cups graham cracker crumbs
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • ¼ cup chopped nuts


Heat raspberries with water, sugar and lemon juice. Dissolve cornstarch in ¼ C cold water. Stir into raspberries and cook until thickened, then cool. Melt marshmallows in milk over boiling water, cool thoroughly – stir occasionally as it cools. Whip heavy cream and fold into marshmallows. Mix graham cracker crumbs, nuts and melted butter. Pat into 9 X 13 pan. Spread marshmallow cream mixture over crumbs. Spread raspberry mixture over top. Refrigerate until firm. Serve with whipped cream. Can be frozen.


2 thoughts on “Whisk It Wednesday: Never too many cooks

  1. Sue, I have two monstrous lemongrass plants in my Florida backyard. I’ve been making lemongrass tea, but your vinaigrette sounds great! Thanks so much.

  2. Lynn, you are so lucky to have lemongrass right in your backyard. Lemongrass tea sounds very refreshing. Enjoy the vinaigrette.

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