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When not teaching music, Parkrose High Choir Director Lesley Bossert, right, loves to entertain. She guarantees this broccoli salad adapted by her mom, Mildred Treis, to be a real crowd pleaser.
The next time you need a dish for a potluck, try this favorite of Lesley Bossert, Parkrose High choir director. Her mother, who she describes as a fabulous southern cook, made sure the family ate lots of fresh fruits and vegetables by serving a variety of salads. Bossert says this broccoli salad has been her favorite go to dish since her days teaching at boarding schools. Because meals are provided at these live-in schools, she rarely cooked, but found this salad to be so popular at family or faculty gatherings that she made plenty so there would be leftovers for guests to take home. Her mother adapted this recipe from one found in a Dayton's Department store employees' cookbook. (Dayton's is now better known as Target.)

Educated at South Dakota State University, University of South Dakota, University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and the University of Utah, Bossert began her teaching career at public schools in South Dakota. From there she moved on to boarding schools in Utah, Pennsylvania and Connecticut. Her first five years in Portland were spent teaching elementary music at Lincoln Park Elementary in the David Douglas School District. Her stint at Parkrose began 11 years ago. There she directs the concert choir, treble choir, A-choir and Debonaires.

As Mother's Day is this month, send a recipe handed down from your mom or grandmother or one you like to serve for special family celebrations. Tell us how you developed the recipe or where you found it and share a bit of your own story. Send your submissions, along with a photo, to Darlene Vinson at or 3510 N.E. 134th Ave., Portland, OR 97230 no later than Monday, May 16 for consideration for the June issue.

Broccoli Salad

2 medium bunches broccoli chopped very small, about 3 pounds
1 small red onion, chopped fine
1-1/2 to 2 cups of seedless red grapes, sliced in half
1 lb. bacon, fried crisp and crumbled
1 cup of sunflower seeds

For the dressing:
1 cup mayonnaise*
2 tablespoons vinegar
1/4 - 1/3 cup sugar*

In large bowl, combine broccoli, onion, grapes and bacon. In a small bowl, combine dressing ingredients adding sugar to your taste. Refrigerate. Just before serving, stir dressing into salad mixture and add sunflower seeds.

*Bossert uses light mayonnaise and substitutes Splenda for sugar to reduce the fat and calories.
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