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Celebrate 2017 with these fabulous Spam recipes

By Deirdre Parker Smith

deirdre.smith@salisburypost.com

Remember, way back in the fall, when we promised you the winning Spam recipes from the N.C. State Fair?

Well, with the holidays over and the doldrums of January upon us, it seemed the perfect time for Spam. You may now start humming “Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam” and remembering that wonderful Monty Python sketch.

Not your thing? Well, Spam is a delicacy in Hawaii, where it comes in more flavors than we’ll ever see here.

Keep in mind, that you can use ham or pork in place of Spam in most of these recipes. Spam has a long shelf life and has been around since 1937, marking this as its 80th year. It was a standby during World War II and is now sold in 44 countries around the world.

It comes in 16 varieties, including one seasoned as Portuguese sausage and Spam Tocino, which is very popular in the Philippines. It is said to be slightly sweeter.

We could bore you with tons of Spam facts, but …

First place winner, Lauren Robertson, Weddington

Hawaiian Crack

45 saltine crackers

1 12 oz. can Hot and Spicy Spam

1 Tbsp. butter or margarine

1 cup brown sugar

2 sticks salted butter

2/3 cup macadamia nuts, chopped

1 cup coconut flakes

Place canned Spam in freezer for 15 minutes. Line an 11-by-17 baking pan with non-stick foil. Place crackers salt side down on baking pan. Remove Spam from freezer and cut from can. Shred Spam on a grater. Melt 1 Tbsp. butter in a skillet and cook the shredded Spam over medium-high heat until crispy. Remove Spam from pan and place on a paper towel.

Place brown sugar and 2 sticks of butter in a small pot. Stirring frequently, cook over medium-low heat until sugar is melted. Once sugar is melted, increase temperature to medium-high heat. Boil for 2-3 minutes. Do not stir.

Pour brown sugar mixture over crackers. Next, sprinkle over crackers in the following order: Spam, macadamia nuts and lastly, coconut flakes. Bake for 13 minutes at 350 degrees.

Let cool 15 minutes. Pull apart into individual crackers.

Second place: Domino Ireland, Raleigh

Spammy Cristoz with Raspberry Jam Sauce (Spammy’s)

1 can (12 oz.) Spam, cut into 1⁄2 inch diced cubes

1 cup gruyere cheese, chopped and shredded
1 can (8 count) refrigerated buttermilk biscuits

1 egg

1 Tbsp. heavy cream

1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. powdered sugar

1/2 cup raspberry jam

1 Tbsp. vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add Spam and cook for about 3 minutes, stirring until edges are lightly crisping. Allow Spam to cool.
In a medium size bowl, beat egg, cream, cinnamon and nutmeg.
In another bowl, mix Spam and cheese. Separate into 8 even scoops.

Press out each of the 8 biscuits to form 6 inch rounds. Place Spam mixture on one half of each biscuit round. Fold dough over the filling and press the edges to seal to make Spam-filled folds – SPAMMY’S!

Place on ungreased cookie sheet and brush egg mixture over top of each folded Spammy’s. Put in oven and bake 15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Heat the raspberry jam in the microwave for a minute or so to reduce to liquid. Serve Spammy Cristoz with warm jam on the side to dip in and enjoy.

Third place: Joi Jackson, Raleigh

Spam Fried Rice with Pineapple Siracha Glaze

4 cups cooked cold day-old white rice

1 1/2 cups frozen mixed vegetables
2 eggs, beaten
1 (12 oz.) can Spam, cubed

1 small white onion, chopped
1 can pineapple tidbits (save 1/2 cup juice for glaze)

3 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 Tbsp. fish sauce
1 tsp. sesame oil
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil, divided
Black pepper to taste

Glaze:
1/2 cup pineapple juice

1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup sriracha sauce

2 Tbsp. honey

Heat 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil in a large skillet. Add beaten eggs and cook for 1-2 minutes, turn only once. Remove eggs from skillet and put on a plate and cut into small pieces, set aside. Add the remaining vegetable oil to the skillet and add the onion. Cook until translucent, and then add Spam. Continue cooking and stirring until the Spam is browned and a little crispy. Now add the rice and cook until heated through. Then add the fish sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil and pepper to the rice and fold in. At this point the rice should have a light brown coloring. Let it simmer for 1 minute, then add frozen veggies, pineapple and egg and cook until warmed through. Fold together and reduce heat to low to keep warm while glaze cooks.

Glaze: Bring pineapple juice, soy sauce, sriracha and honey to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat, reduce to low and simmer for 3-5 minutes to thicken slightly. Let cool 5 minutes and drizzle over fried rice for that sweet, hot fire!

Youth

First place: Sydney Ann McCoy, Apex

Tropical Thai Spam Salsa

12 oz. can Spam Lite, diced into small cubes

1 can crushed pineapple, including juice
3 Tbsp. Thai sweet chili sauce
1 cup yellow corn

1 cup diced strawberries
1 cup black beans, drained

1 cup green zucchini, diced

1 cup red onion, diced
1/4 cup cilantro, diced

Dice Spam and marinate overnight with pineapple juice.
In a non-stick pan, sauté Spam in pineapple juice with Thai Sweet Chili Sauce.
In a bowl, combine corn, pineapple, strawberries, black beans, zucchini, red onion and cilantro and sautéed Spam.
Chill in the refrigerator for a few hours.
Serve with chips or crackers.

This recipe is easy to prepare, low in cost and full of your daily nutritional needs.

Second place: Emily Niewoehner, Smithfield

Crispy “Spam” Stickers

3 tsp. honey
3 tsp. yellow mustard
12 oz. can Spam, finely chopped
4 cups Napa cabbage, chopped
4 spring onions, trimmed and finely chopped

Sesame seed oil
Olive oil or canola oil
Wonton wrappers
Water

In a frying pan add 1/2 tsp. olive oil and chopped Spam, fry until golden brown. In a bowl, add spring onions to Napa cabbage and mix. Once the Spam is cooled, add it to the cabbage mixture. It is important to cool it so it will not wilt the cabbage. Then add the honey and mustard to the Spam filling and stir to combine. Lay out one wonton wrapper and put a spoonful of filling in the center. Wet the edges of the wrapper with a little water, fold over and pinch to seal. Put olive oil or canola oil with a drop of sesame seed oil into a frying pan and fry wontons until crispy and golden brown on both sides. Combine equal parts honey and mustard to make a dipping sauce.

Third place: Sarah Salvador, Sanford

The Glorious Spam and Rice Recipe

1 can Spam Lite
1 cup bulgogi sauce
8 Tbsp. sweet chili sauce
1 Tbsp. sugar
1 1/2 cups broccoli, steamed to desired doneness
5 cups rice, cooked according to package instructions

Slice Spam lengthwise into 1/4 inch pieces.
Dip in bulgogi sauce.
Cook in a pan on medium heat until golden brown and crisp on both sides. Mix together sweet chili sauce, sugar and remaining bulgogi sauce.
Place Spam and broccoli on top of rice and drizzle with sauce.
Serve and enjoy!

What in the world is bulgogi sauce, you say? Good question. Bulgogi is a Korean recipe for thinly sliced beef. A check on the internet found one source for what is described as Korean BBQ Sauce, World Market. Recipes for the dish use Asian pears or apples for fruitiness. Not sure what you could substitute, maybe a spicy/sweet barbecue sauce? If anyone tries this, please let us know.

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