all sorts of recipes, from me to you…


Thursday, May 26, 2016

Classic Strawberry Shortcake for Memorial Day


Three years after the Civil War ended, on March 5, 1868, John A. Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, established Decoration Day as a time for the nation to decorate the graves of the war dead with flowers.  

He declared that Decoration Day should be observed on May 30.  It is believed that date was chosen because flowers would be in bloom all over the country.  


This poster from 1917 shows the name change and honors the memory of the dead from the American Revolution, the War of 1812, the Mexican-American War, the Civil War, and the Spanish-American War.


Known commonly now as Memorial Day, it’s the day for us to reflect, honor and acknowledge those who gave their selfless service and the ultimate sacrifice for their country.  

It’s also a time to remember our present veterans and those in service now.  To them all, we owe an unplayable debt. Here’s Bill, my favorite veteran, my husband:


Home from Basic Training, 1965,  Private



 
Bamberg, Germany, early 1967, Sergeant




















Machine Gun Instructor
1st Engineer Training Brigade
Ft. Leonard Wood, Mo 
Fall 1967
Sergeant E5  











Here’s a little Memorial Day Trivia for you:


*  Red poppies are known as a symbol of remembrance, and it’s a tradition to wear them to honor those who died in war.

*  President Bill Clinton signed the National Moment of Remembrance Act on Dec. 28, 2000, designating 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day as a National Moment of Remembrance.  Television and radio stations play the “Taps” to give Americans pause during their busy Memorial Day.

*  The crowd that attended the first Memorial Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery was about the same size as those that attend today’s observance:  about 5,000 people.

*  It has been often reported that “Taps,” the most famous bugle song came from a Civil War captain who discovered his long lost son in a field of Confederate bodies, but this is nothing more than an urban legend.  In fact, the bugle song comes from Union Brig. Get Daniel Butterfield during the Civil War.  He didn’t care for the “customary firing of three rifle volleys at the conclusion of burials during battle” and wanted a softer and more somber bugle song to honor his fallen soldiers. 

*  More than 150 years later, the Civil War remains the United States’ deadliest conflict.  More than 620,000 people died during the war.  Many of the casualties occurred as a result of disease, rather than as a direct result of injuries.  The second deadliest conflict was World War II, in which more than 400,000 American soldiers lost their lives.

*  Memorial Day is now the second-most popular holiday (after the Fourth of July) for a sun-baked barbecue:    53% of people grill on the holiday, according to Hearth, Patio and & Barbecue Association.

*  And, to wrap it upThe National Hot Dog and Sausage Council notes that on Memorial Day, Americans will consume a stomach-busting 818 dawgs per secondThat’s just a few wieners short of 71 million in a day. They’re not sure how many packages that equals, but they’re betting the equivalent number of bun packs would fall short by, oh, 1.3 million or so.






Memorial weekend also ushers in summer.  
Woo hoo!
My favorite time of year!






It’s also the beginning of strawberry season.  And what better way to give a nod to it than classic strawberry shortcake!  




Here you won’t find any of those little sponge discs that look like sofa casters that you see displayed by the strawberries at the grocery store.  I always pass on them as they taste like I suppose foam rubber would. 

This is all about serving the juicy strawberries over rich, flaky buttery homemade biscuits made with cream and a touch of sugar, topping it all off with whipped cream, of course!


Classic Strawberry Shortcake

Ingredients:

1½ pounds strawberries, hulled and sliced, tossed with 2-4 tablespoons sugar; set aside.

For the shortcake:

2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoons baking soda
2 tablespoons sugar
¾ teaspoon salt
1½ cups heavy cream 
Whipped Cream, recipe follows

Method:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
In a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and sugar and salt.
Add cream, mix until just combined.
Place mixture in an ungreased 8-inch pan.
Bake until golden, about 18 to 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, while shortcake is baking, place a metal bowl and beaters in the freezer.
When shortcake is baked, remove from pan and place to a rack to cool slightly.
Cut into 6 pieces and split shortcake in half horizontally.
Beat all whipped cream ingredients in the metal bowl with chilled beaters about 1½ to 2 minutes, until peaks form.
Spoon some strawberries with their juice onto each shortcake bottom.
Top with a spoonful of whipped cream and the shortcake top.
Place a couple of strawberries over all and an additional dollop of whipped cream for garnish.

For the Whipped Cream 

1½ cups heavy cream, chilled
3 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
Makes 6 servings
Printable recipe


ENJOY! 



Here’s to Memorial Day
summer
and
strawberry shortcake!












Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Easy Smoked Turkey Sausage Skillet

 

 

Here’s a tasty quick little dish 
for your busy day!




This is a slightly adapted Hillshire Farm’s recipeUsing smoked turkey sausage, cuts fat and calories; substitute the regular if that’s what you prefer. 

Stir-fry the meat in a little chicken broth and water, then added a can of fire-roasted diced tomatoes.

Bill suggested it would do well with the sausage mixture served over a bed of rice, instead of combining it all in the skillet ~ I’ll do that the next time!  Most likely, the appeal of it would improve also.

My brain was on vacation when I served it though; I noticed the mozzarella sitting in the refrigerator after dinner.  It would've been great to have the cheese scattered over it…


SMOKED TURKEY SAUSAGE SKILLET

Ingredients:

1 package smoked turkey sausage, sliced thin diagonally
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large red bell pepper, large chop
1 white onion, chopped
1 package frozen broccoli, thawed
1 can (14.5) ounces, diced fire-roasted tomatoes
2 cups instant rice
1/2 cup shredded Mozzarella

Method:

In a non-stick skillet, place sausage slices and cook until browned, transfer to a plate.
Heat oil in skillet.
Add pepper, onion, broccoli, and tomatoes and simmer for 10 minutes until the vegetables are tender and the liquid is absorbed.
In the meantime, prepare rice according to package instructions.
Stir sausage and rice into the skillet, combine well.
Sprinkle with cheese!
Serve

ENJOY!



 



Thursday, May 5, 2016

Death by Chocolate Trifle for Mother's Day!



Delight your mom’s 
(and everyone else’s) 
sweet tooth 
this Mother’s Day!







Who can resist the lure of chocolate?  I don’t know what it is ~ there’s something about chocolate that gets us going.

I would say this dessert is one of the most decadent desserts ever, both sinfully rich and sinfully delicious!

Brownies add some chewiness, while Kahlúa and the whipped topping make it creamy smooth.  For a fine finish, top it off with a delectable toffee crunch!

You try this and I guarantee you that it is so delicious there will not be any leftovers…

This is a chocoholic’s dream!  It’s wickedly delicious! 


Death by Chocolate Trifle

Ingredients:

1 family-size fudge brownie mix
½ cup Kahlúa or coffee liqueur
2 (4.2 ounce) boxes Dr. Oetker Double Chocolate Mousse Supreme
8 (1.4 ounce) Skor or Heath candy bars
1 (12 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed

Method:

Preheat oven and bake brownies according to package directions.
Allow to cool completely.
Using a fork, prick holes in the top of the brownies.
Drizzle with Kahlúa.  Set aside.
Make chocolate mousse according to package directions.
Break Skor candy bars into small pieces by tapping on them with a hammer while in the wrapper.
Crumble half of the soaked brownies and place in the bottom of a trifle bowl or large glass dish.
Cover with half the mousse.
Layer with ⅓ of the candy.
Spread half of the whipped topping over the layers.
Repeat layers with the remaining ingredients.
Garnish with remaining ⅓ candy bits.
Makes 24 servings





Here’s wishing all of you moms ~
Happy Mother’s Day
full of  
happiness, love and relaxation
doing what you like to do best
because it’s
YOUR day!
ENJOY!!!








Monday, May 2, 2016

One-Pan Chicken Florentine Spaghetti Bake



This is about simplifying your day!
 



There’s very little prep work here ~ it’s a no fuss dish:  dry pasta, uncooked chicken, your favorite sauce, all blanketed with mozzarella cheese. 

To begin, break raw uncooked spaghetti in half, or thirds, over a layer of your favorite sauce; homemade or jarred, in a casserole baking dish. 

Cut the chicken into bite-size chunks and spread over the top, along with mushrooms and spinach.  Do this in two layers, finishing with mozzarella sprinkled over the top, then bake for an hour or so. 




That’s it!  One-pan, no fuss, little clean-up and a delicious comforting dinner for you and your family on a chilly day like it is here today!

It doesn’t get much easier!


One-Pan Chicken Florentine Spaghetti Bake

Ingredients:

8 ounces (1 box) dried spaghetti, broken in half or smaller
1 (10-ounce) package frozen spinach (thawed and squeezed of excess liquid)
8 ounce can sliced mushrooms, drained
14 ounces chicken breast, cut into bite-size chunks
42 ounces (one 26 ounce jar plus one 16 ounce jar) spaghetti sauce, or homemade
8 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese

Method:

Preheat oven to 350°.
Pour 1 cup of sauce in bottom of 13” x 9” baking dish.
Layer half of spaghetti over the sauce.
Layer half the mushrooms, half the chicken and half the spinach.
Arrange more dried spaghetti over all.
Continue with layers of remaining chicken, mushrooms and spinach.
Place remainder of spaghetti on top.
Spread remaining sauce over the top, covering the entire casserole.
Be sure all of the noodles are covered with sauce.
Scatter mozzarella over top.
Cover and bake for 40 minutes.
Uncover, and bake an additional 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

Printable recipe


ENJOY!



 

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Mustard Slaw


Mustard is my favorite condiment.  Bill and I had lunch at Red Robin yesterday, where he watched me smear my burger with mustard.  He told me that’s as bad as putting ketchup on a hot dog, which I would never do.  




Grandpa always spread his bread with mustard, so I learned about mustard at an early age.  But then, I always loved Miracle Whip spread on white bread for an after school snack too…

Speaking of Red Robin ~ have you been there lately and noticed a $1.99 charge on your bill for Entertainment Tax?  Seriously now!

Anyway, if you like mustard, here’s your slaw ~ that’s the secret ingredient with this fantastic slaw.
Mellow yellow mustard gives the slaw just enough bite; without overpowering the slaw, like a pungent spicy hot mustard.  

Adding the combination of mayo, a little sugar, half-and-half, celery seed, and a splash of vinegar makes the dressing creamy, sweet and tangy, having a very balanced flavor.




Purchase a bag of shredded cabbage mixture to eliminate your doing the doing the shredding and/or to save time.

This slaw is perfect with burgers, fish sandwiches or on pulled pork sandwiches.  

You will be hooked from the first bite, and hopefully your mustard naysayers will too!

This is pretty tasty slaw!


Mustard Slaw

Ingredients:

5 cups white cabbage, shredded
1 cup red cabbage, shredded
1 carrot, shredded
1 small onion, finely chopped
½ cup half-and-half
3 tablespoons yellow mustard
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon celery seed
1 teaspoon kosher salt

Method:

Mix vegetables in a large bowl.
Blend everything else in the blender or whisk well.
Pour over cabbage and toss.
Makes 6 cups
Printable recipe

ENJOY!




Friday, April 22, 2016

Shrimp Pasta w/Tomato and Basil


This is a great quick little pasta dish that’s ridiculously delicious!




It’s a delicate dish in a light slightly spicy sauce that’s not loaded in calories.  






I can’t say much more about it ~ it’s simple and flavorful, doesn’t require much effort, nor time and best of all, your family will love you for it when you cook it!


Shrimp Pasta w/Tomato and Basil

Ingredients:

8 ounces spaghetti
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
3 garlic cloves, minced
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon sugar
Salt and pepper, to taste1 (16-ounce) can Fire Roasted diced tomatoes
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
½ cup basil leaves, chiffonade
Shredded Parmesan for garnish, optional

Method:

Cook spaghetti in a large pot of salted boiling water according to package directions.
Place oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.
Add shrimp and garlic to skillet.
Cook shrimp about 1 minute on each side until they just begin to turn translucent.
Transfer to plate and set aside.
Reduce heat to medium and add canned tomatoes, cook for 1 minute.
Add red pepper, sugar and season with salt and pepper.
Stir in cherry tomatoes and basil, cook for 1 minute.
Return shrimp to pan and combine well.
Add cooked spaghetti, tossing well.
Cook for another 2 minutes.
Serve, garnished with Parmesan.

Printable recipe

Enjoy!





Friday, April 15, 2016

49 and Counting...




This is truly hard for me to fathom:
it has already been 
17,898 days,
roughly 429,567 hours
since Bill and I married
way back
 49 years ago, 
on April 15, 1967.  


Seems like it was yesterday, doesn't it, dear?



Our+wedding+day
April 15, 1967 ~ Louisville, KY


We were both young things 
in our early 20’s 
when we married 
and life has been 
good to us ever since.



Hawaii 2001 At the luau
Hawaii - 2001


It makes me happy that 
I found and married 
such an 
optimistic ~ loving ~ kind 
 husband 
with a witty sense of humo
that cracks me up daily.


He's a caring father 
for our 2 magnificent sons, 
plus
caring grandfather for our 
adorable groovy 
5-year-old grandson.


Bill, Jr.

Matt


2004 ~ Tucson


2006 Riviera Maya Mexico Hotel bar
2005 ~ Riviera Maya, Mexico


 2007 ~ 40th anniversary renewal vows in Las Vegas, with Elvis "officiating." 
The sun was very bright in this pic, but had to include it because of Elvis' pose!


Las Vegas 2008
2008 ~ Las Vegas


2010 Springfield KY
2010 ~ Springfield, KY

2013 ~ near home






We will be celebrating it low-key this year, with a delicious dinner at a favorite restaurant here in the Chicago area:  filet mignon for me, strip steak for him, with all the trimmings…


Toasting to our 49 years 
of wedded bliss
and Income Tax Day!