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4th of July Celebration

Oktoberfest Celebration

Gather friends or family, savor this hearty meal and enjoy the best October has to offer.

Oompah-pah, oompah-pah, roll out the barrel and you'll have a barrel of Oktoberfest fun! Oktoberfest is a centuries-old German celebration. Originally lasting 16 days, it celebrated a royal marriage in Munich in the year 1810. Although times have changed, the celebration continues with great food, music and boisterous activity. So don those lederhosen, and let the good times roll!

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Make It Special!

Oompah-pah Activities

Create paper hats when guests first arrive to put everyone in the spirit. Supply paper, feathers and ribbon. Be sure to capture all the fun on film.


Pretzel rod and apple ring relay: Divide your group into two teams. Everyone gets a large pretzel rod (cigar size). Each team passes an apple ring, rubber band or round pretzel with a hole on the pretzels from person to person. Repeat once for additional fun!

Word fun: Prepare a list of German words with the aid of a German dictionary. Guests then guess what the words mean. Assign points for having the correct answer or being able to bluff others that an answer is correct. If your group knows the language, make it a "no English" event, and punish slipups with a silly penalty.

Polka Fun

Pass out song sheets. Everyone can sing along to polka music on CDs, or hire a live polka band for dancing and singing.


Place baskets of apples throughout the party area. Visit a local orchard for prime pics.

Scatter real or plastic fall leaves on tables.

Fill room corners and door entries with corn shucks, pumpkins and squashes.

Place German flags in vases; place miniature flags on appetizer trays.

Decorate walls with German posters picked up at travel agencies.

Hang lederhosen or costume parts on wall.

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Preparation Guide

Up to 3 Weeks Before

Make Beer-Lover's Peanuts

Make Bread Machine Caraway-Rye Bread slice, wrap and freeze.

The Day Before

Make Cheesy Reuben Appetizer up to the point of baking; refrigerate.

Cook the beets for German Beets; refrigerate.

Make Bread Machine Caraway-Rye Bread if not made earlier; slice and wrap.

Make Harvest pound Cake

The Morning Of

Make Cheesy Pretzels Make an extra batch if you expect hearty appetites.

Assemble Bavarian Pork Chops in casserole; refrigerate.

About 1 Hour Before Guests Arrive

Heat apple cider.

Make Jarlsberg, Onion and Apple Canapés up to the point of baking; refrigerate.

Bake pork chops.

Finish making German Beets.

When Guests First Arrive

Bake Cheesy Reuben Appetizer.

                Bake Jarlsberg, Onion and Apple Canapés.

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Oktoberfest Celebration Menu

Nonalcoholic beer or apple cider*
Cheesy Pretzels

Beer-Lover's Peanuts

Cheesy Reuben Appetizer

Jarlsberg, Onion and Apple Canapé

Bavarian Pork Chops

Bread Machine Caraway-Rye Bread

German Beets

Harvest pound Cake

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Bavarian Pork Chops

Barley, sauerkraut and an apple turn barbecued pork into hearty German fare!

1 bag (32 ounces) refrigerated sauerkraut, undrained


2 cans (14 ounces each) sauerkraut, undrained

1 large unpeeled cooking apple, chopped (1 1/2 cups)

2 medium onions, chopped (1 cup)

1/3 cup uncooked regular barley (not quick-cooking)

8 pork loin or rib chops, 3/4 inch thick

2/3 cup barbecue sauce

1. Heat oven to 350F.

2. Mix sauerkraut, apple, onions and barley in ungreased 2 1/2-quart casserole or rectangular baking dish, 13x9x2 inches. Place pork on sauerkraut mixture. Spoon barbecue sauce onto pork.

3. Cover and bake 1 hour 15 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes, uncovering for last 15 minutes, until pork is slightly pink when cut near bone, barley is tender and liquid is absorbed.


Beer-Lover's Peanuts

Serve these easy-to-make, spicy snacking nuts with plenty of ice-cold beverages.

2 teaspoons vegetable oil

1 1/2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning

1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper (cayenne)

2 cups lightly salted dry-roasted peanuts

1. Heat oil in 10-inch skillet over medium heat. Stir in Cajun seasoning and red pepper. Stir in peanuts.

2. Cook about 2 minutes, stirring constantly, until peanuts are evenly coated and hot. Cool slightly. Serve warm or cool. Store tightly covered up to 3 weeks.


Bread Machine Caraway-Rye Bread

Rye bread lovers, we didn't forget you. This light rye has the added bonus of nutty-flavored caraway seed. And, there's a recipe for Chive-Swiss Spread, too!

1 cup plus 3 tablespoons water

1 tablespoon butter or margarine, softened

2 1/2 cups bread flour

3/4 cup rye flour

2 tablespoons dry milk

2 tablespoons sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

3/4 teaspoon caraway seed

2 1/4 teaspoons bread machine or quick active dry yeast

Chive-Swiss Spread, if desired (See Below)

1. Measure carefully, placing all ingredients except Chive-Swiss Spread in bread machine pan in the order recommended by the manufacturer.

2. Select Basic/White cycle. Use medium or Light crust color. Remove baked bread from pan, and cool on wire rack.

3. Serve with Chive-Swiss Spread.

Chive-Swiss Spread

1 package (3 ounces) cream cheese, softened

2 tablespoons milk

1/2 cup finely shredded aged

Swiss cheese (2 ounces)

1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives

1. Mix cream cheese and milk until blended. Stir in Swiss cheese and chives. Store covered in refrigerator.


Cheesy Pretzels

Squirt 'em with mustard or extra cheese, or eat these easy-to-make treats plain!

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2/3 cup milk

1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese (2 ounces)

2 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1 egg

Coarse salt

1. Heat oven to 400F. Grease cookie sheet. Mix all ingredients except egg and coarse salt in medium bowl with fork until soft dough forms. Smooth dough gently into ball on floured board. Knead 10 times. Divide dough in half.

2. Roll half of dough into 12x8-inch rectangle. Cut rectangle lengthwise into eight 1-inch strips. Fold each strip lengthwise in half into 12x1/2-inch strip; pinch edges to seal. Twist each strip into pretzel shape. Place seam down on cookie sheet.

3. Beat egg in small bowl with fork until blended. Brush pretzels with egg. Sprinkle lightly with coarse salt.

4. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Repeat with remaining half of dough.


Cheesy Reuben Appetizer

If you’re a Reuben sandwich fan, you’ll love these easy-to-make appetizers.

1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened

1 1/2 cups shredded Swiss cheese (6 ounces)

1/2 cup Thousand Island dressing

4 ounces deli sliced corned beef, chopped

1/2 cup well-drained sauerkraut

Pretzel crackers, if desired

Cocktail rye bread slices, if desired

Chopped fresh chives, if desired

Sliced radishes, if desired

1. Heat oven to 400F.

2. Mix cream cheese, 1 cup of the Swiss cheese, the dressing and corned beef. Spread in pie plate, 9x1 1/4 inches, or quiche dish, 9x1 1/2 inches. Top with sauerkraut and remaining 1/2 cup Swiss cheese. (Cover and refrigerate up to 24 hours if desired.)

3. Bake about 15 minutes or until bubbly around edge. Serve hot with pretzel crackers or cocktail bread. Garnish with chives and radishes.


German Beets

Fresh ruby red beets at their best! Enjoy the sweet-and-sour flavors of this nutritious and beautiful side dish.

10 medium beets (2 1/2 pounds)

2 tablespoons cornstarch

2 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1 1/3 cups water

1/2 cup white vinegar

1. Cut off all but 1 inch of beet tops. Wash beets; leave whole with root ends attached. Heat 8 to 9 cups water, 1 tablespoon white vinegar (to preserve color) and salt (if desired) to boiling in 4-quart Dutch oven. Add beets. Cover and boil 40 to 50 minutes or until tender; drain. Cool, peel and slice beets.

2. Mix cornstarch, sugar, salt and pepper in 3-quart saucepan. Gradually stir in water and vinegar. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and boils. Boil and stir 1 minute.

3. Stir in beets; cook until hot.


Harvest pound Cake

Fresh apples, chopped nuts and a divine caramel sauce make a cake without equal!

2 cups sugar

1 1/2 cups vegetable oil

2 teaspoons vanilla

3 eggs

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 medium apples, peeled and finely chopped (2 cups)

1 cup chopped nuts

Caramel Glaze (See Below)

1. Heat oven to 350F. Grease and flour 12- cup bundt cake pan.

2. Beat sugar, oil, vanilla and eggs in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Stir in flour, salt and baking soda until smooth. Stir in apples and nuts. Pour into pan.

3. Bake 1 hour to 1 hour 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 20 minutes. Remove from pan to wire rack. Spoon Caramel Glaze over warm cake.


Caramel Glaze

1/2 cup butter or margarine

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

2 teaspoons milk

1. Heat all ingredients to boiling in 2-quart saucepan, stirring occasionally. Boil 2 minutes, stirring constantly; remove from heat.


Jarlsberg, Onion and Apple Canaps

These dainty open-face cocktail sandwiches balance sweet and salty flavors with soft and crunchy textures. We dare you to eat just one!

1 tablespoon butter or margarine

1 medium onion, cut into fourths and sliced

4 ounces thinly sliced Jarlsberg or Swiss cheese

16 slices pumpernickel cocktail bread

1 tablespoon Dijon-mayonnaise blend or Dijon mustard

1 to 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives

1 medium unpeeled apple, thinly sliced

1. Heat oven to 400F. Melt butter in 10-inch skillet over medium heat. Cook onion in butter 4 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender.

2. Cut cheese to fit bread. Spread each bread slice with Dijon-mayonnaise blend. Top each with onion, apple and cheese. Sprinkle with chives. Place in ungreased jelly roll pan, 15 1/2x10 1/2x1 inch.

3. Bake about 5 minutes or until cheese is melted. Serve warm.