Saturday, July 19, 2014

Smothered Chicken

We love smothered chicken that we find in restaurants, but don't love the price or the fact that we live 30 minutes from any restaurants around. For years, I've made sauteed mushrooms for my family as a side dish that they absolutely love! I decided to come up with a smothered chicken using the mushrooms, and this is what I came up with... done in the time it would take us to drive to town, and tastes much better than anything you could order in a restaurant. When I make it for friends, they always ask for the recipe! I even make it for large crowds, events and banquets! It's always a hit!

4 chicken breasts, pounded out to even thickness
1 large onion, sliced
1 - 8oz pkg mushrooms, sliced
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbsp Soy Sauce
Salt, Black Pepper and Garlic Powder
3 oz pkg Real Bacon Bits
4 thick slices of Monterrey Jack Cheese or Pepper-Jack for a nice kick

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Heat about a tablespoon of oil (or spray with cooking spray) in a large sauce pan. Sprinkle Chicken Breasts with salt, black pepper and garlic powder. Add Chicken to the pan and cook over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes per side or until done and no pink left in the center.

Caramelized a sliced onion in about a tablespoon of butter, 2 garlic cloves, minced and a tablespoon of soy sauce. Saute until the onions are golden brown.

Saute the mushrooms in a tablespoon of butter, 2 garlic cloves, minced and a tablespoon of soy sauce. Saute until the mushrooms have cooked off their juices and get a little color on them. (about 10 minutes)

When the chicken is done, place them in a casserole dish or baking pan and top with onions, mushrooms, bacon and cheese. Put the chicken in the oven for about 2 to 3 minutes or just long enough to melt the cheese.

Serve with 
a garden salad and some zesty garlic bread for a quick and easy supper!

Monday, July 7, 2014

A Tribute to Michele Wynn Gerhard ~ La Belle Cuisine

Years ago, I fell into a friendship that began on Southern With A Twist over some recipes I had posted and comments that were made on my blog...
"Wow! You know I love this, Lynn! When I read about your Mama making biscuits, I could picture my grandmother doing the same thing! Her biscuits were heavenly! When I would try to duplicate her efforts, I would always fall short! She'd smile and say, "Well, you're probably not holding your mouth right..." As with biscuits, so with pie crust and any other "short" dough... it takes a very light touch. Looking forward to much more from you, Lynn!" Going Back To Your Culinary Roots
And thus a friendship was formed. We found out that we had so much in common. It seemed that the more I wrote, the more we connected.
"Okay... as I was saying an hour or so ago... I LOVE your post! As you know, family culinary history is very dear to my heart! What you wrote reminds me of a long-ago 4th of July weekend spent with dear friends who helped organize a progressive party around a lake near McComb MS. It started out with Bloody Marys and went from there... Actually, there was some great food, but everyone remembered and talked about the Bloody Marys and the bottomless Daiquiri glasses served by a Delta pilot at his cabin. Apparently he was just sneaking up behind folks refilling their glasses. Best daiquiris I've ever had! And of course, a couple of the guys just HAD to have a swim across the lake. Mercy, mercy, mercy... Looking forward to your next post, Lynn!" Going Back To Your Culinary Roots
I loved the stories that we shared and the things we had in common... so much in history and food!
"Lynn, this really takes me back! I'm drooling all over myself! Actually the kind of meal you describe takes me back to Oklahoma when my grandparents had a place on Grand Lake. No crabbing there, but tons of fish! And my Grandmother Dolly had a fantastic vegetable garden. Mercy, mercy, mercy... As for the oysters and crabs, we spent some time in Colonial Beach VA, which is right at the mouth of the Potomac..... little oysters fresh out of the water, the sweetest I've ever had! I never did cook any crab in those days, but I sure did eat a lot!"  Soft Shell Crabs from Mitchum Creek
The more we connected, the more we felt connected!
"OK Lynn, I'm pretty sure your Grandmama Bradham and my grandmother were related! :)" Mama’s Date & Nut Bread
I think that her comment here is my favorite. I loved all her stories, but when she called me "Sistah!", I knew I was something special! 
"LOVE this, Sugah! Takes me straight back to long ago summers in Oklahoma with Grandmother Dolly and Granddaddy Mack! I still have vivid memories of watching her wring a chicken's neck, just the way you describe! And Granddaddy Mack cleaning squirrels and rabbits, and whatever else he might have brought home from the woods... We are soul sistahs fo' sho'! xoxoxoxo"
And a friendship bloomed, and we exchanged phone numbers. We had glorious talks on the phone! We rejoiced, complained, discussed, confided, cried, laughed and shared all manner of stories. I even sent her parts of my two books to review for me... In return, she sent me two cookbook, with a note attached...
"Read these! Look over them carefully! They are garbage! You are 100 times better than them!"
Michele was an awesome Mentor, Friend, Cook, Writer, Mother, Sistah and all around Woman! It was my PRIVILEGE to have known and loved her! I am a better person for having her in my life!

Oh how I'm gonna miss you my Sistah from another Mothah! I'll keep you in my heart Always and Forever! Until we meet again! XOXOXOXOXOXOXOXOX

Please visit Michele's beloved website La Belle Cuisine and get a look at the wonderful, amazing woman that I had the privileged to get to know and love!

Monday, June 23, 2014

A Grandmother's Secret and a Giveaway!

I'm having a giveaway! Almondina Cookies! Enter to win the same package that I received, pictured below! Just follow the instructions in the section at the bottom of this post. It's just that easy! Come back each day and get extra points! The contest ends on July 1st, 2014! Good luck!

Almondina ~ "To put a delicious healthful cookie on every table."

What a mission! I received this package of cookies to try and share. They are "all-natural, wonderfully crunchy almond biscuits" No cholesterol. No added fat, trans-fats, salt or preservatives.

As for the taste, I think a picture is worth a thousand words! :-)

Kendal digging into the Almondina with both hands, saying "Mo! Mo!"

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Elliott's Old School Country Ham

The other day the hubby and my son Elliott went to the grocery store. Elliott picked up a couple of packs of country ham pieces. When he got home, he asked me how you cook it. I told him that I usually cook it in the cast iron skillet. He told me, "No, Mama! For Country Ham, we are going old school!" He told me to find an old skillet that he could use outside. I came out back and found this...

 He cut vents in the bottom of a #10 vegetable can

so the fire could get air and he could add more wood.

He stoked the fire.

When the pan was hot enough, he added the ham.
Nothing like cooking "old school"!
Here are some recipes that you can make using country ham!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Aunt Vashti's Browned Squash in the Crock Pot!

I had a sweet lady at church bring me a bag of yellow squash. It was enough that I shared some with my brother. He loves Aunt Vashti's squash, but says that his crowd will only eat it if it's breaded and fried. I had enough for him to do both, thank goodness! Aunt Vashti's recipe is below, and then my crock pot version below that...

Aunt Vashti used:
Yellow Squash... about 4 or 5 
3 T butter
1 onion, minced 
3 cloves minced garlic
Salt and black pepper, to taste.

Cook in a sauce pan on medium low, stirring occasionally. I covered it for the first 30-45 minutes for it to cook down. Then let it simmer and turn golden brown. (about an hour to an hour and a half) Aunt Vashti's squash was always a deep bark brown,  and caramelized to perfection! YUM!

This time, I put all of the ingredients in my crock pot, and I added mushrooms. I cut it on high and got it up to temperature. Then I cut it back to low and let it simmer all night... Voila!

It was very good, but I still like it pan fried like Aunt Vashti made it!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Shrimp Scampi

My family doesn't always agree on what to have for supper, or how I fix shrimp for that matter. They do, however, all agree on Shrimp Scampi! 

1 (16 ounce) package angel hair pasta
1/2 cup butter or margarine
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup minced onion
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 1/2 pounds shrimp
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded

Bring a large pot of salted water (with a drizzle of olive oil added) to a boil over high heat. Add the angel hair pasta, and cook until done; drain. Reserve the pasta water. 

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in the garlic, onion, salt, pepper, and lemon juice. Once the mixture begins to bubble, stir in the crab. Cook and stir until heated through. Add in cooked pasta and toss. Add enough pasta water to create a sauce as thick or thin as you want. Taste and adjust seasonings. 

Serve sprinkled with Parmesan cheese and add a salad and some garlic bread to serve.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Memorial Day Weekend Celebration with Prime Rib at my Baby Brudder's House

When you are lucky enough to be invited to my brother's house when he's cooking, do yourself a favor and be there! Don't show up late either! The food waits for no man... or woman! LOL It was an awesome time with friends and family!

 My Baby Brudder, Master of the grill!

 The star of the evening... The Prime Rib!

 Prime Rib, hangin' out in the Au Jus!

 His BBQ chicken... awwwwesome skin!

 A little different from our Greek Potatoes, but very, VERY good!

 Christie, the birthday Princess! :-)

 Christie's Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad.
Here's a recipe for a Simple Pasta Salad.
Dinner Rolls... There was cake,
but I wasn't brave enough to come in between
the guests and cake! LOL