In my home state of FLORIDA, there are lots of gators! For fun, we actually like to go out and shine headlights or spotlights on the water to see if we can see some GATOR EYES (the eyes shine in the lights! It's way cool.) (Yes, this is true! And you definitely don't want to get too close, right?)
But even more fun than spying gator eyes, is eating some gator eyes... except we ONLY eat the ones made out of pickles, cream cheese, and lunchmeat ham!
My sister-in-law is SUPREMO at making these. Her gator eyes far surpass mine. But, luckily she shared the recipe with me and I gave 'er a whirl this weekend. They were delicious! Not as beautiful as my sister-in-law's gator eyes, but delicious!
These are great for potlucks, packing for lunch, pretty much any holiday or picnic.
This is how we make Gator Eyes, AT HOME MY WAY:
- 1 jar of large whole pickles (We prefer kosher dills from Vlasic but sweet pickles are also really, really good!)
- 1 (8 oz) cream cheese (I use low fat)
- 1 package of lunch meat ham (the packages that are rectangles and it should be "cooked ham" not honey ham or boiled ham (I don't know why this makes a difference, but it does.)
(I bought this kind and it worked great):
Bring the cream cheese to room temp or so that it is spreadable. Dry off each slice of ham that you use (1 ham=1 pickle), dry both sides very well.
Dry off each pickle that you use very well.
Spread cream cheese on each slice of ham, then wrap the cream cheese/ham (cream cheese side to the pickle) and wrap up.
Place all the wrapped pickles on a plate, wrap with plastic wrap, and place in the fridge for several hours or overnight.
Right before serving, slice the pickles.
The Plus: The maker of these pickles gets to eat all of the ends! Woo-hoo!