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Showing posts from July, 2012

Braised Green Beans

Growing up, Mom always made green beans with a little ham, bacon, or new potatoes; in any combination ~ or just plain bacon grease.I still like them prepared any of those ways, but this new version makes me happy too!


The green beans are braised in chicken broth that’s doctored up with garlic cloves and thyme.Add a drizzle of olive oil and a little salt and pepper, and enjoy this dish that is a Martha Stewart recipe.
In my way of thinking, you can never have enough fresh green beans in the summer time ~ I hope you try this quick braise!

Braised Green Beans
Ingredients:
1 cup chicken or vegetable broth 5 peeled cloves garlic 1 pound trimmed green beans 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves Salt and pepper, to taste Extra-virgin olive oil Lemon slices
Method:
In a large skillet, bring broth and garlic cloves to a simmer over medium-high heat. Add green beans and thyme and cover. Cook until desired amount of tenderness. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil. Serve with lemon slices.

Delicious!!!  I …

Creole Catfish with Vidalia-Olive Relish

President Ronald Reagan declared June 25th National Catfish Day in 1987, due to its symbolism of American summertime fun.  Catfish is also the fifth (see #5) most popular fish in America.
I know a lot of you, like me, think it’s great and the rest of you, wouldn’t dream of cooking up a batch; however, you should try this recipe for baked catfish. It just might cause you to like catfish!
Catfish takes on the flavors that it’s cooked with and in this case, spices add snap to the catfish, while the sweet onions and tangy olives in the relish make this dish mouthwatering delicious!



This simple catfish recipe is adapted from Cooking Light.  If you don’t like corn meal, substitute flour.  The blackened seasoning adds a definite kick to the fish ~ adjust to your liking.   Fried catfish is delicious, but baking it is a great change of pace and a healthy alternative.  It’s spicy delicious with the relish!

Creole Catfish with Vidalia-Olive Relish
Ingredients:
1 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon canola oil 1…

Fresno Potatoes

Potatoes are so versatile ~ you can even make a battery with them!  Check it out here...



It was in South America, about 5 thousand years ago, when scientists believe the first potato was cultivated.  The Incas learned how to mash and dehydrate them into what they called chunu, which could be stored up to 10 years; guarding against crop failure.  The tuber was first introduced to the colonies in the 1600’s by the British governor of the Bahamas, then on to the White House where Thomas Jefferson served the spuds to his guests.  From then on, the potato has grown in popularity to become one of the most widely used foods around the world. 
I love potatoes, pretty much any variety, prepared any way. When I first came across this recipe, I knew it was a must try ~ potatoes, bacon, onion and cheese.    The only puzzling thing about this dish is, why the name Fresno?  Do you know?
This would be a great side dish for about any meal; perfect for anything from brunch to a cook out!  Try this if yo…

Quick Dill Pickles

The worker at the farmers' market brought in a basket of Kirby cucumbers while I was there yesterday, so I bought some to make this recipe of Martha Stewart’s that I’ve been hanging on to.
The word “quick” got my attention, and that they are, no canning involved.  There’s a great blend of pickling spices and garlic to go with the vinegar and a little sugar.  I let the flavors mingle in the refrigerator over-night and popped a couple in my mouth early this morning.  Yum!  They’re good and crisp, a little salty.





These are definitely worth making!To me, nothing makes a sandwich taste better than a dill pickle topping it, or on the side ~ plus a handful of potato chips!

Quick Dill Pickles
Ingredients:
1 pound Kirby cucumbers, sliced 2 tablespoons coarse salt 1 cup water 1 cup white vinegar 1 tablespoon pickling spice 2 teaspoons salt 1 clove garlic A few sprigs fresh dill 1 tablespoon sugar
Method:
Toss sliced cucumbers with coarse salt. Chill 1 hour. Rinse and drain. Combine remaining 7 ingredients. St…

Pork Medallions with Blackberry Chutney

Imagine wearing a long-sleeved shirt tucked into long pants ~ a hot summer day under the scorching sun ~ trudging through the field, with a basket swinging from your hand ~ heading toward the blackberry brambles by the creek…



We picked baskets full of large, juicy blackberries and carried them back to the kitchen for Mom to bake her mouthwatering blackberry pies.  There was a price to pay though ~ torn clothing, and scratches on our hands from the briars plus, a few bug bites on our necks.  Not to mention, magenta-stained fingers.  It was all worth the effort though ~ because of a slice of fresh blackberry pie later.
Those days, growing up on the farm, are long over.  My blackberries come from the farmers’ markets now ~ not as plentiful, nor as good as fresh-picked, but delicious nonetheless for blackberry cobblers and pies, jam; and even as a snack with a piquant cheese, or a sauce made from the recipe below.




This blackberry chutney, a Martha Stewart recipe, is the perfect accompaniment…

Garlicky Pattypan Squash with Spinach

Pattypan squash ~ I don’t believe I’ve ever seen it in the produce section of the grocery store or at the farmers' markets here.


Anyway, they caught my eye at a specialty market recently as they are colorful and resemble tiny flying saucers with ruffled scalloped edges.  I bought a pound of them and when “Googling,” learned they are a summer squash.  The name “pattypan” derives from “a pan for making a patty.”  The ones I bought were yellow, but they can also be white or green.  Its French name, pâtisson, derives from a Provençal word for a cake made in a scalloped mould. 
Pattypan squash has creamy flesh on the inside that is somewhat sweeter than other summer squash.  This recipe is adapted from one by Bon Appétit.  The squash has a mellow taste, being sautéed with spinach that is perked up with plenty of garlic.  Do not sauté for long as the squash can turn to mush quickly.   I will be looking for the cute pattypan squash at the farmers' markets here soon!




Garlicky Pattypan S…

Happy 4th of July & I'll be back later...

Here’s wishing you all a
Happy
Safe &
Delicious
4th of July!!!








I’m sad to say, my dear sister-in-law, Barb, has lost her 4 year battle to ovarian cancer.  She is in good hands now, and free of pain and suffering.  I’ll be away for a while…




Peach Fluff

I kid you not ~  when I was young, Mom must’ve served strawberries in one form or another ~ from jam to strawberry shortcake ~ with every meal in the summer…
So ~ when I saw this recipe, it was for Pink Fluff, using strawberries; Mimi stated that other fruits substitute well.  We all like peaches here, so I’m calling it “Peach Fluff.”  If  you don’t know Mimi, you can find her blog of mouthwatering recipes right here.

According to Mimi, this is a recipe from her mom’s very old sorority cookbook.It originally called for dream whip and Mimi updated it with heavy cream.It is delicious and a perfect summer dessert!

The sweet ripe peaches are combined with whipped cream and topped with a brown sugar crumble.  Then place the pan of deliciousness in the freezer for a cold summer dessert.  Remove it from the freezer 10-15 minutes before serving to make slicing easier.  You want it slightly soft to taste all the flavors and make it easier to eat. 
Try any combo of fresh fruits you like, blackberri…









Summer was our best season: it was sleeping on the back screened porch in cots, or trying to sleep in the treehouse; summer was everything good to eat; it was a thousand colors in a parched landscape…

~ Harper Lee, To Kill a Mockingbird






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