I remember when I was a child and my paternal grandmother would make what I call “Chex Mix”. She didn’t call it “Chex Mix”. She called it “Trash”. I think because it had everything but the kitchen sink in it. I loved hers, because it was very salty and very garlicy.
When I got older, my mother gave me for Christmas one year a set of cookbooks inside which were treasured family recipes that she had labored for a year compiling. My mother’s recipe for what I call “Chex Mix” was in there. She called it “Nuts and Bolts”.
The first time I made the mix, it did not have enough of that garlicy, saltiness that I loved in my grandmother’s “Trash”. So, the next time I made it, I doubled the garlic salt and that did the trick. I’ve kept the recipe the same ever since. No matter what you decide to call it – “Trash”, “Chex Mix”, “Party Mix”, or “Nuts and Bolts”, I call it delicious!
1 box Rice Chex cereal
1 box Wheat Chex cereal
1 box cheese crackers (I think Cheese Its are the best.)
1 box pretzel sticks
1 one pound can of mixed nuts
1 pound salted butter (4 sticks)
2 TB garlic salt
1 TB Worcestershire sauce
In a very large roasting pan, mix together rice cereal, wheat cereal, crackers, pretzels, and nuts. In a medium sized bowl, melt butter in microwave. Add garlic salt and Worcestershire sauce to the butter and stir well. Pour one ladle full of the butter mixture over the mix. Stir mix gently with a large spoon or spatula until all of the butter is incorporated evenly into the mixture. Continue this process of ladling one ladle full of butter at a time until all the butter is used. Stir butter mixture well each time before ladling as the butter mixture has a tendency to separate when not stirred. Cook at 250 degrees for 1 hour and 20 minutes stirring well and gently every 20 minutes.
If it were possible to say that I have a “signature dish”, this might be the closest thing to it for me. It is what I get requests for at Christmas time. It is what I give to the kid’s teachers or send to friends in the mail as a little happy. It is what I have made for my husband’s hunting trips for years, and there is never any that comes home. I think there is almost nothing better than a bowl filled with Chex Mix and a cup filled with Coke to sit down and watch a movie or TV. Needless to say, we enjoy it and hope you do too!