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Luncheon Ladies Recipe

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"The character behind these salad gals was my mother," reveals Harriet Rummel of Reynoldsburg, Ohio. "She'd serve them to my teachers each spring at a special luncheon she hosted. I did the same when my children were little. Nowadays, I make them when friends come over."—Harriet Rummel, Reynoldsburg, Ohio
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. + chilling
MAKES:4 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. + chilling
MAKES: 4 servings


  • 3 celery ribs
  • 4 hard-cooked eggs
  • 12 whole cloves
  • 4 pimiento slices
  • 20 carrot curls
  • 4 tomato slices
  • 4 lettuce leaves
  • 2 cups chicken salad
  • 12 ripe olive slices
  • 8 whole pitted ripe olives


  1. Cut eight 1-in. celery sticks and set aside. Cut eight 1-1/2-in. pieces from remaining ribs; with a sharp knife, make lengthwise cuts in each piece, as close together as possible, beginning 1/2 in. from one end. Place in ice water. Refrigerate until celery begins to separate, about 1 hour.
  2. To form ladies, place each egg on a salad plate. Insert cloves into egg for eyes and nose. Add a pimiento for a mouth. Surround top and sides of egg with carrot curls for hair. Position a tomato slice below egg for the body. Tuck the narrow end of lettuce leaf under tomato for skirt.
  3. Spoon 1/2 cup chicken salad under each lettuce leaf. Place three olive slices on each tomato for buttons. Drain frilled celery ribs; place next to tomato for arms. Place celery sticks below lettuce for legs. Place whole olives at ends of celery for shoes. Serve immediately. Yield: 4 servings.
Originally published as Luncheon Ladies in Country Woman May/June 1998, p47

Light-Bodied White Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a light-bodied white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio.

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