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Dear Joyce: These two main dish salads were given to me by my two daughters-in-law. They are easily adjusted for different size servings.

Macaroni-Pepperoni Salad

1 cup elbow macaroni, cook and drain

1 cup sliced celery

1/4 cup diced red onion

2-3 oz. thinly sliced pepperoni cut into halves or fourths

1/4 cup Italian dressing

1 to 2 tbsp. pickle relish

1 tomato, diced

Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese for garnish

Toss all ingredients in a bowl except the cheese. Chill at least 1 hour uncovered. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese just before serving.

Serves 4.

A Different Taco Salad

2 lbs. hamburger

1 onion, chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

1 large bottle Catalina dressing

1 can pinto beans, drained

1/2 head lettuce, cut fine

1/2 pkg. (large) Dorito chips, crushed smaller

2 tomatoes, cut up

Shredded taco cheese

Brown hamburger and onion. Drain and cool in large bowl.

Pour 1/2 of bottle of dressing over meat. Mix well. Cover and chill overnight.

Just before serving, add the rest of ingredients and the rest of the Catalina dressing. Toss well. Sprinkle taco cheese to your taste on top. Serves 12.Enjoy!

I'm 84 years old, still love to eat well, so I cook. I often use recipes from your column. — Harriet M. Lee, Glasgow.

Dear Harriet: Fine salads. Excellent choices for a main dish. Thank you for contributing to the column, and I would love to hear from you again.

Dear Joyce: I was thinking of salads I enjoyed and remembered this from a few years back. It's time to serve it again.

Sweet Potato Salad

1 (29-oz.) can sweet potatoes or yams, drained (or substitute 4 fresh sweet potatoes or yams, cooked)

3 hard cooked eggs

1 bunch scallions, finely chopped (or to taste)

3 medium ribs celery, thinly sliced

3 tbsp. sweet pickle relish

1 tbsp. sugar

1/2 cup Durkee's Famous sauce

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/2 tsp. salt

Mash potatoes in large bowl. Finely chop eggs, add to potatoes, along with rest of ingredients and stir together well. Chill, covered, at least 2 hours before serving.

Salad will keep several days in refrigerator.

Serve this at your next picnic or barbecue and see how fast it goes. — Samantha, via e-mail.

Dear Samantha: This was one of my favorite salads way back when it was served at the Finley Hotel in Butte and later on at the Black Angus in Billings. Thank you for reviving a memory.

Please send your recipes and requests to: Just ask Joyce; c/o The Billings Gazette; P.O. Box 36300; Billings, Mont. 59107 or email to

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