With so many Oklahomans having to stay home in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, the need to get creative when it comes to meal time has taken on a bit of urgency.

The Made in Oklahoma Coalition wants to offer a spark to your culinary imagination with dishes that feature ingredients from coalition members.

If your Easter celebration resulted in a good deal of leftover ham, add it to the MIO Coalition’s recipe for Italian Pasta Salad to turn a side dish into an entree.

This salad is made even more special by using pasta by Della Terra, an artisan small-batch pasta maker with unique shapes and a homemade quality you can taste. And it’s best to make this salad several hours before serving, to give the flavors the chance to meld.

For something sweet, turn a lunch box staple into a treat with PB&J Muffins, with a peanut butter batter augmented with a spoonful of real fruit spread.

For more information of MIO Coalition products and where to find them: miocoalition.com.


1 package Della Terra Fusilli Pasta

1 cup Dianne’s Legendary Italian Salad Dressing

1 12-ounce package Schwab’s Ham, diced (or use leftover ham)

2 tablespoons Scissortail Farms Thyme, stems removed and finely chopped

2 cups Scissortail Farms Baby Spinach

½ cup sun-dried tomatoes, thinly sliced

½ cup Leonard Mountain Olives, quartered

1. Make pasta according to package directions. Allow pasta to cool.

2. Place all chilled ingredients into a large mixing bowl, toss gently and serve.


For topping:

⅓ cup brown sugar

⅓ cup granulated sugar

¼ teaspoon cinnamon

¼ teaspoon salt

½ cup Braum’s unsalted butter, melted

1½ cup Shawnee Mills all-purpose flour

For batter:

1¾ cups Shawnee Mills all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon cinnamon

1 large egg

½ cup packed brown sugar

2 teaspoons Griffin’s vanilla

6 tablespoons Braum’s unsalted butter

¾ cup peanut butter

¾ cup Braum’s milk

12-ounce jar Gina’s Gourmet Strawberry Spread

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2. Make the topping by blending together both sugars, cinnamon, salt and melted butter until combined, using a wooden spoon. Add the flour and continue mixing until it becomes sandy in texture. Set aside to use for topping.

3. For the batter, in a large bowl whisk flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.

4. Line a muffin tin with liners, and spray them with nonstick spray.

5. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the egg, brown sugar and vanilla until smooth.

6. Place the butter and peanut butter together in a bowl and microwave for 30-40 seconds. Stir well — the mixture should be fully incorporated and warm, but not hot.

7. Combine the butter and peanut butter mixture with the egg and sugar mixture until it is smooth. Add the milk while mixing until smooth. Pour the wet mixture over the flour mixture, gently folding with a spatula until you have a thick, smooth dough. Do not to over-mix.

8. Fill the liners about three-quarters of the way full. Use an ice cream scoop or equal measure for each. Place a tablespoon or so of the strawberry preserves into the center of the batter, pressing it into the middle. Cover the tops of each generously with the crumb topping. Bake for 18 to 22 minutes.

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James D. Watts Jr.




Twitter: watzworld