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Sunfower Foods For The Holidays

Friday, December 1, 2000
filed under: Utilization/Trade

Sunfower Foods For The Holidays

Featuring award-winning recipes from Enderlin, ND “Sunfest”

Sure, you might be an in-shell sunflower seed junkie, and you might sprinkle the roasted kernels on your greens whenever you make a trip to the restaurant salad bar. However, sometimes it gets forgotten that the sunflower kernel can be used to enhance a whole lot of other foods.

Just ask the folks in Enderlin, N.D. Each September as a part of their annual “Sunfest” city celebration, they hold a sunflower cooking contest. This year judges sampled over 20 different entries in two categories: main dishes, salads, and appetizers; and sweets and breads. Entries are judged on taste, appearance, texture and creativity.

Following are this year’s top three award-winning recipes in each category. You can find even more ‘flower-focused recipes for the holidays—including apple sunflower strudel, sunflower cheese balls, caramel sunflower rolls, and sunflower pumpkin muffins—on the National Sunflower Association’s website, The online recipe section can be found under the publications and information link.

Main Dishes, Salads & Appetizers

1st Place-Nina Richardson

Grandma Shirley’s Broccoli Salad

1-bunch fresh broccoli, washed, drained and cut into flowerettes

1 lb. bacon, fried crisp and crumbled

1-cup chopped celery

1/2 cup chopped red onion

1/2 cup hulled sunflower seeds

1/2 cup raisins (grandma used golden raisins)


3/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup sugar

2-TBSP vinegar

Pour over above and toss to coat.

Cook’s note: To make a lower fat version of this salad I often use low fat

or no fat mayonnaise. The sugar and vinegar make it so that you can hardly

tell. I also halve or omit the bacon.

2nd Place-Tamra S. Kriedeman

Chopstick Sunflower Salad

1 cup ranch salad dressing

1-TBSP soy sauce

8 cups torn romaine lettuce

2 cups cooked chicken, cubed

1 cup chopped green onion

1-8 oz can sliced water chestnuts, rinsed, drained and halved

1/2 cup dry roasted sunflower seed meats

Wisk together the ranch dressing and soy sauce. Set aside. Combine

lettuce, chicken, green onions and water chestnuts. Toss with dressing just

before serving. Top with sunflower seeds.

3rd Place-Vivian Skramstad

Busy Day Cabbage Salad

1-16 oz bag shredded cabbage

1 cup slivered almonds

1 cup sunflower seeds

4-5 green onions and tops

3 oz pkg ramen noodles

Dash of salt, optional


1/2 cup sunflower oil

1/4 cup sugar

3-TBSP vinegar

Place all ingredients in a bowl. Pour dressing over and marinate 15-20

minutes before serving. Serves 4-6. Keeps well in the fridge.

Sweets & Breads

1st Place-Sheryl Dagman

Sun Nutty Coffee Cake

Melt 1-stick butter. Mix 3/4 cup sugar and 2 TBSP cinnamon. Spray no-stick

cooking spray on the bottom of a pie plate. Sprinkle 1/2 cup roasted,

salted sunflower seeds in pie plate.

Place 1/2 container of 16 oz. coconut-pecan frosting on sunflower seeds.

Dip each biscuit of 2 cans of refrigerated biscuits in melted butter, then

in sugar mixture. Arrange by overlapping on top of sunflower-frosting

mixture in pie plate. Bake at 350º for 25 minutes. Serve warm and place

upside down on a plate to show sunflower seed frosting.

2nd Place-Lisa Stoffel

Carmel-Apple Cheese Torte

1 can apple pie filling

6 oz. cream cheese, softened

1 egg

1-1/2 tsp vanilla

3-TBSP sugar

1-TBSP flour

1-6 oz. pkg cinnamon graham crackers, crushed with 2-TBSP sunflower seeds

1/3 cup caramel topping

1/2 tsp cinnamon.

Preheat oven to 375º. In a mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, egg,

vanilla, sugar and flour. Beat until smooth. Spread mixture over pie

crust. Combine apple pie filling, caramel topping and cinnamon. Gently

smooth over cream cheese mixture to keep two distinct layers. Sprinkle a few

more crumbs and sunflower seeds on top. Bake 40-45 minutes or until apple

bubble up around the edge of torte. Best served at room temperature. Store

in refrigerator.

3rd Place-Tamra S. Kriedeman

Chocolate Sunflower Shortbread

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup sugar

1-tsp vanilla

1 cup flour

1/4-tsp salt

1/2 cup David brand chocolate-covered sunflower kernels

Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in vanilla. Stir in

flour and salt. Add sunflower seeds. Press into 2-ungreased round cake

pans. Bake at 375º for 10-12 minutes or until just golden brown. Score, by

lightly cutting (not all the way through) shortbreads into 8 wedges. Let

stand in pans about 10 minutes. Invert onto cooling rack and cool

completely. Break into triangles.

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