Hawaiian Haystacks

This recipe was originally published on August 4, 2011!! Probably one of our first ones and by our good friend, Kara.  Just thought it would be cool to pull this one out of the archives and share with you today.  This is a fun recipe to do if you want to really freak somebody out who is funny about mixing different foods together.  
This meal is fairly versatile. And when I say fairly, I mean EXTREMELY–making it easy to serve because there is something for everyone! You can make the really simplified version, or the harder version depending on your mood and/or time constraints.
I’ll give you the “hard” version–although I will tell you this: If it’s really THAT hard, I’m not going to do it. I have small children and, let’s face it, a lot of time could be wasted on dinner no one will eat. I like to feel appreciated at the end of a meal. 🙂 (What cook doesn’t?)
Look for substitutions at the end of the post to help you simplify, if needed.
4 Cups Cooked Rice
4 Cups Seasoned Chicken Broth (this can be canned or made from Bouillon)
1/3 Cup Cornstarch
1/4 Cup or less Cold Water
2 – 3 Cups Cooked, Shredded Chicken (sometimes I boil some chicken breasts or grill them on my panini maker.)
Salt and Pepper to taste
A variety of Veggies, etc. It comes down to what you have on hand. Mix and match, try this or that. Find YOUR favorites.
I recommend any of the following:
Peas (fresh or thawed frozen)
Green Peppers
Green Onions
Pineapple (Cubed Fresh or Canned Tidbits)
Slivered Almonds
Sunflower Seeds
Shredded Coconut
Sliced Water Chesnuts
Chinese Chow Mien Noodles
Grated Cheese
For the Sauce:
1. In a medium sauce pan, bring your chicken broth to a boil over medium-high heat. Because I use Bouillon to make my broth, I use 4 Cups water. (This is also when I start my rice, but you can start yours when it’s good for you.)
2. While you’re waiting for the broth to boil, combine the cold water and cornstarch in a small bowl with a lid. Shake it up till it’s a nice liquid consistency.
3. When boiling, add your Bouillon (if needed) and then whisk in your cornstarch mixture.
4. Whisk until thick and clear. Don’t worry too much if you feel like it’s not getting super thick. Sometimes mine is gravy-like. Sometimes it’s more soupy. Either way it tastes good so don’t sweat the small stuff!
5. Add your shredded chicken and stir till well combined. Add your salt and pepper, too. Keep warm over low heat, stirring occasionally.
6. Chop or de-can your sides. (Is de-can even a word? You all know what I mean, right? No? Okay, if you’re using canned fruit or veggies, get them out now)
7. Put each topping into an individual bowl.
8. To make your haystack, begin with rice and your soupy or gravy-like chicken sauce. Then go to town and add whatever suits your fancy! Or, if you’re like my #1 kiddo, just eat it as chicken and rice.


Cooked Chicken = 2 Cans of Cooked White Chicken Breast
OR if you’re running really low on time and need a good meal fast:
Chicken Sauce = 1 Can Cream of Chicken Soup (No lie! And it’s still tasty!)
Source: Janet Hales, From My House To Yours, Big Piney-Marbleton Communities 1995, Relief Society Cookbook

Old Bay Shrimp Boil


I know this didn’t make it in time for your July4th shindig, but we had it for ours and it was amazing.  Have you ever tried one of these shrimp boils/low country boils/whatever boils?  So easy and so much fun to eat.  No plates or utensils required.  Easy-peasy clean up and easy to double or triple, depending on the size of your hungry crowd.  And kids even like it–have pizza delivered if there are a few hold-outs.  This was the first time that I have ever personally been in charge of making the boil–usually my sister Amy prepares it–but she wasn’t staying at the beach for the 4th and my Dad really wanted to have it for a big family meal.  He calls it a “Shrimp Dump.”  As you can see from the picture above, that is a good description.  

Here are a few time-saving tips if you can spare a few more dollars–and it is well worth it:

  • Buy the mini frozen ears of corn–I got store brand.
  • The mini red or white potatoes that are already washed and ready to cook work great
  • This can be cooked on your stove, but we have a propane-powered turkey fryer and it was so great being able to do this instead of having two large stock pots on the stove at the same time.
  • Have your Dad pay for and pick up the shrimp fresh the morning of your meal–ours was caught the night before and they were so fresh and tasty.
  • Use plastic, disposable tablecloths because when you are done with the meal and have put away any small amount of leftovers, you just roll those tablecloths up and toss them in the garbage can, shells and all.
  • I purchased some cute cardboard food trays that were displayed with the tablecloths and these were perfect for guests to put their shrimp shells into.

Get at it!

Shrimp Boil
Serves 8
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  1. 1/2 cup Old Bay Seasoning
  2. 2 T. salt
  3. 1/2 c. minced onion (you can use large Vidalia onions cut in quarters)
  4. 4 quarts water
  5. 1-2 pkgs. of ready-to-cook baby white or red potatoes, skin on
  6. 2 lbs. Hillshire Farms Turkey Kielbasa, cut into 2-inch chunks
  7. 2 pkgs. (6 each) mini frozen corn cobs
  8. 4 lbs. medium shrimp, in shells
  1. In an 8-qt. stock pot, bring Old Bay, salt and water to a boil.
  2. Add potatoes and onions; cook over high heat for 8 minutes.
  3. Add kielbasa; continue to cook on high for 5 minutes.
  4. Add corn and boil another 7 minutes.
  5. Add shrimp, shells on, and cook for about 4 minutes. Once they turn pink they are ready. DO NOT OVERCOOK.
  6. Drain your liquid from the pot and pour contents onto your table--make sure the tablecloths are on. You could also use newspaper.
  1. Original recipe calls for 1 (12-oz.) can of beer, but we don't drink so we just left it out and added a little more water.
  2. We use Crosse & Blackwell Cocktail Sauce and just pour it right onto the tablecloth in as many "piles" as you need.
  3. Also good to melt several sticks of butter and put into small bowls on the table so that guests can either dip their corn in it or maybe their shrimp. Or why not the spuds?
Adapted from Food.com
Adapted from Food.com
Mormon Mavens https://www.mormonmavens.com/