June 25, 2008 · Updated 12:51 PM
"Margaret Walton is on vacation this week, so we've gone back into our archives and selected two recipes she says are among her favorites for holiday parties. We've run them before, but good a recipe never gets old.Favorite party salmon mousse1/4 cup cold water1 envelope unflavored gelatin1/4 cup bottled chili sauce1 cup plain lowfat yogurt1 pkg. (8 oz.) Neufchatel cream cheese, at room temp.1 t. dried crumbled thyme1 t. dill weed1/4 t. black pepper, or to taste8 oz. cooked salmon, flaked (preferably fresh; otherwise use 1 can skinless, boneless salmon, drained and flaked)1 large egg, hard-boiled, peeled and finely chopped1/4 cup finely chopped celery1/4 cup finely chopped pimiento or green olive (optional; I leave out the green olive)1. Coat a mold (I use a salmon shaped mold) with vegetable spray. Put the cold water in a small saucepan and sprinkle the gelatin over the water. Let stand 1 min. to soften the gelatin, then stir in the chili sauce. Cook over med. heat about 5 min., or until the gelatin is completely dissolved. Transfer to a bowl and set stand at room temp. for 15 min.2. Into the gelatin mixture (after the 15 min.), add the yogurt, Neufchatel cheese, thyme, dill and pepper. Beat with electric mixer until creamy. Fold in the salmon, egg, celery and pimiento/olive, if using, combining thoroughly. Spoon into the mold, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 3 hours or until well set. When ready to serve, unmold onto a bed of lettuce leaves and serve with small toast rounds and/or crackers. Note: If you have time and have used a fish-shaped mold, you can use an olive slice to make the eye and use very thin strips of green pepper or cucumber to mark the scales and tail lines.Party Pate8 oz. lean ground pork and 8 oz. ground veal1 med. onion (not too sharp), chopped2-3 cloves garlic, minced1/2 cup low-fat milk2 large egg whites1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs3 sprigs cilantro or parsley1/2 t. dried oregano1/4 t. dried thyme1/8 t. ground sage or 1/4 t. crumbled dried sage leaves1/8 t. freshly ground black pepper, or to taste1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a loaf pan with foil, with the foil standing about 1 inch above the pan on all sides; lightly grease the foil.2. In a skillet, cook the pork, veal, onion and garlic over med.-high heat until browned (about 10 min.). The pork should provide sufficient fat in which to cook these ingredients, and if you use a non-stick skillet, you won't have to add any oil. After cooking, drain off any fat.3. In a food processor or blender, process the meat mixture with the milk until almost smooth. Add egg whites, bread crumbs, and remaining ingredients, processing until almost smooth, but it should have a bit of character - don't make it like baby food. Spread mixture in the foil-lined pan, cover with foil and place pan in a larger baking pan. Pour water around the loaf pan to a depth of 1 inch and bake for 1 hour or until an instant-read thermometer inserted near the center reads 170 degrees. Cool on a wire rack for 1/2 hr. then refrigerate at least 6 hrs. or up to two days. When ready to serve, take hold of the foil edges you left standing and lift the pate out of the pan. Carefully remove all foil. Use a very sharp thin-bladed knife to slice the pate, making very thin slices. Cut each slice in half and arrange slices on a bed of lettuce or other greens, surround with tiny grape tomatoes and/or green grapes, or very thin cucumber and/or pickle slices, or green and black olives - or whatever pleases you. Serve with an assortment of crackers and/or small cocktail rye bread slices. "