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Saturday, July 7, 2018

Happy World Chocolate Day!

It is World Chocolate Day! Is there a better way to celebrate than with chocolate? Check out some of my favorite recipes featuring chocolate. Happy World Chocolate Day!

Cheesecake Brownies and a Cheesecake Brownie Sundae

Chocolate Caramel Brownie Tartlets

Enjoy and Happy World Chocolate Day!

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Grilled Pork Tenderloin

Yesterday, I bought a pre-marinated Pork Tenderloin. I ordered the Garlic and Herb, but came home with the Garlic and Cracked Pepper. Wow! Spicy for me, but a wonderful product! I grilled it on medium high for about 12 minutes on both sides. It was juicy, delicious and perfectly cooked! It is an easy product to prepare. Just open the vacuum sealed package and put it on a preheated grill. Done! I tented it after removing from the grill and let it rest for a few minutes. 

If you have a tenderloin and need a marinade recipe, follow this one and marinate for a few hours or overnight.

1/4 cup oil

2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 garlic cloves, minced

2 teaspoons minced onion
1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt 
1/4 teaspoon Cracked Black Pepper

Put the tenderloin dry with paper towels. Combine the lemon juice, oil, garlic, onion, salt and pepper in a sturdy 1-gallon resealable plastic bag. Add the pork tenderloin and turn to coat with the marinade. Squeeze out the air and seal the bag. Marinate the pork in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours or overnight is best.

Preheat grill on medium high. Remove tenderloin from marinade and place it in the center of the grill. (protected from flare ups) Grill it on medium high for about 10 minutes on both sides. Tent it after removing from the grill and let it rest for a few minutes before carving. 

 Farm Fresh Corn on the side!

... and home grown tomatoes!

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Tuscan Soup... requested by a guy that hates soup!

Last time... "My guys don't eat soup. One night I was making this soup for my step-mother who wasn't feeling well. My son and husband were in the back of the house playing the play station. They came into the kitchen asking what the terrific smell was... Needless to say, I had to make another batch of soup!"
This time the hubby actually asked me to make this soup!  I decided to make it a little heartier. I used Kielbasa because that was all I had on hand. I added large chunks of mushrooms and a teaspoon of minced garlic. I also a cup of evaporated milk. The basic recipe is listed below. Fell free to add or take out what you'd like!

Tuscan Soup

6 cups chicken broth
1 onion, chopped
3 (3.5 ounce) links Johnsonville Italian sausage
3 large potatoes, cubed
1 bunch fresh spinach, washed and chopped
1/4 cup evaporated milk
salt and pepper to taste

Remove skin from sausage and crumble into frying pan. Add chopped onion, and cook over medium heat until meat is no longer pink. Place meat in a large pot; add stock and potatoes. Boil until potato is cooked. 
Add spinach. Continue boiling until spinach is lightly cooked. Remove soup from heat, stir in evaporated milk, and season to taste.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Chicken Wings!

I love fixing a big batch of chicken drummettes for any casual event. I give my guests a choice of plain or three sauce options. These are a favorite for kids of all ages

6-8 chicken drummettes 
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1 Tablespoon Hot Sauce
2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
Oil for frying

Make an egg wash by beating the eggs, buttermilk and hot sauce together in a shallow dish. Mix flour and spices in another shallow dish. Dip drummettes in egg wash then dredge in the flour mixture. For a thicker crust on the chicken, repeat that step again... egg then flour. In a heavy skillet, heat about 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch of oil to 365 degrees. (Or heat a deep fryer to 365 degrees) Place chicken in hot oil. (If the oil is not up to temp, the coating will not stick. Do not crowd the chicken in the pan or it will boil in the oil and not fry crispy.) Fry for about 5 minutes per side or until golden brown and no longer pink inside.

Lemon Pepper Sauce

1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp minced garlic
lemon pepper to taste

Combine ingredients in a sauce pan and simmer for a couple of minutes. Toss wings in sauce and serve.

Teriyaki Sauce

1/3 cup soy sauce
1 cup water
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 tbsp honey
2 tbsp cornstarch
1/4 cup cold water

Mix all but the cornstarch and 1/4 cup of cold water, in a sauce pan over medium heat. Mix cornstarch and water. Stir til dissolved. Add to sauce pan. Heat until thickened. Toss wings in sauce and serve.

BBQ Hot Sauce

1 yellow onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp oil
1 cup ketchup
1/4 cup brown sugar, light or dark
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup Texas Pete hot sauce*
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

Saute onion and garlic in oil in a large pan. Drain any excess oil. Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer about 10 minutes.

*Add more or less to your taste.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Fish Fry... with two sauces for dipping!

Thanks to my brother Charlie, I am stocked up on catfish once again. 

He is my main source, and why not? He brought in this 42 pounder!

I have already baked some in the oven with onion and lemon. (my favorite way to bake fish) So now on to frying some! 

Easy Fish Fry
  • Fish... catfish, cut into nuggets
  • Oil for frying
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon lemon pepper
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
Mix flour, cornmeal and seasonings in a plastic container with lid (big enough to fit fish inside). Place fish in the flour mixture and carefully shake. Remove fish and fry in deep fryer set at 350 degrees until golden brown and fish floats.

I didn't have any relish for the tartar sauce,
so I just left it out. It was still very tasty!

Cocktail Sauce

1 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1 small lemon)
2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
dash Worcestershire sauce
few drops hot sauce
salt to taste

Combine and blend all ingredients well.

Tartar Sauce

1 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish
1 tablespoon minced onion (optional)
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
2 tablespoons lemon juice 
salt and pepper to taste

In a small bowl, mix ingredients together. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Chicken Fajitas

At our house, we love tacos, burritos, enchiladas and fajitas! I have never made fajitas, and we don't care for bell peppers. I decided to try making some and substitute mushrooms for the peppers. It was delicious!


1 large chicken breast, cubed
1 large onion, thick slices
2 garlic cloves, minced
8oz mushrooms, thick slices
Fajita Seasoning

Saute the chicken in butter until no longer pink in the middle. Add onions and mushrooms and saute  until tender crisp. Add garlic and stir. Pour in about a 1/2 cup of water to lift any bits stuck to the pan. Stir in the seasoning and simmer until thickened.

For the fajitas:

Chicken mixture
Flour tortillas
Cheese, such as a Mexican blend

Sour cream
Fajita sauce

Heat the tortillas. Add the filling mixture, cheese and sauce. Add sour cream or serve it on the side. 

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Chinese Takeout at home!

I had a craving for Chinese Takeout. I've made all these dishes separately, but I hadn't made them all at one time. So, I took on the task of all three at one time. SCORE!!! It was awesome, and no leftovers!

Egg Rolls (click here for the recipe)

These egg rolls are really pretty easy to do! I think the part about egg rolls that people think is intimidating is just the assembly... the rolling. It's more like folding them into an envelope shape. The most complicated part is rolling the wrappers and sealing them well, but that gets easy after you do it a couple of times! Don't work on the stack of wrappers while filling and rolling. Assemble each one separately to keep them from getting wet and sticking together. Keep your work space dry and neat. If you lay a wrapper down in water, the water turns to glue. The wrapper will tear when you try to pick it up or fold it. Give it a try! If you have kids, let them try too! It's a fun activity for everyone. I think it would make a great kitchen party with all the guests learning how you roll! LOL

Beef and Broccoli with Cauliflower Rice (click here)

Beef and Broccoli served over rice with a substitution of cauliflower rice for those on the New Year's Resolution diets is the casserole of the week! Comfort food doesn't have to be fattening or loaded with carbs! Cauliflower is a great substitution for carb loaded vegetables and starches. It has a neutral taste that blends well with any flavors it is teamed. Try using it in place of rice or mashed potatoes!

Mama's Tempura Batter for Sweet and Sour Chicken (click here)

Mama's Notes and tips: “Great for shrimp, fish, onion rings, mushrooms, eggplant, even fried green tomatoes!”
Use cold water to prepare the batter. Chilled light beer or Club soda can be substituted. For best results keep the batter cold by placing the tempura batter on ice.

Mama's Red Sauce (click here)
I got this recipe from my Mama's recipe file and modified it a little. When I made it, I realized it tastes just like the Chinese Restaurant's Red Sauce! I had been trying to duplicate that sauce for years because that's the main reason the hubby eats Chinese Food! LOL Stumbling on to this recipe was a real find! Mama called this Hawaiian Sauce!