Creamy Cucumber Tomato Salad

Light and refreshing, 
this creamy cucumber tomato salad is a hit with any meal!

It’s a classic salad that’s good on its own or served with grilled chicken, fish, pork or burgers or grilled steak. In other words, it’s a tasty side dish that goes for most any meat!

Versions of this salad have been floating around for years, including, vinegar, sugar, yogurt, ranch dressing, mayonnaise, red wine or balsamic vinegar in the dressing, adding all sorts of fruits and veggies the mix:  bell peppers, cranberries, grapes, or radishes.  Then there are herbs:  parsley, dill, basil, and on and on.

This is my take on it:  a sour cream, celery salt based dressing combining cherry tomatoes, cucumbers and red onions.  

It’s pretty simple, pretty easy, and pretty good!

Creamy Cucumber Tomato Salad
Printable recipe

For salad:
1 cucumber, diced
½ pint cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
1 red onion, sliced

For dressing:
½ cup light sour cream
½ teaspoon celery salt
½ to 1 teaspoon seasoned pepper
½ teaspoon garlic powder

Combine dressing ingredients in a bowl.
Add vegetables and combine gently.
Chill before serving.


Chicken with Olives, Salsa and Lime

If you need an effortless 
dish for dinner 
that comes together in 20 minutes, 
this saucy chicken dinner is for you.

Chicken breasts braised in flavorful pico de gallo (salsa) and salty green olives for tender, delicious meat...

I love a recipe such as this that calls for the juice of a lime!  This is an adapted Real Simple recipe.  To speed up the process, I found a jar of pico de gallo sauce in the grocery store’s refrigerated section.  You may prefer to chop your own mixture of onions, tomatoes and herbs.

Bill and I thought this was great. It’s easy peasy ~ it became one of my favorite chicken recipes, maybe it will be yours also!

Serve this dish with rice or a simple green salad and crusty bread ~ dinner doesn’t get much easier than this.

Don’t forget the lime wedges at serving time!

Printable recipe


2 tablespoons olive oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
4 cups pico de gallo
½ cup chopped green olives
Lime wedges, for serving


Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high.
Season chicken all over with salt and pepper.
Add chicken to skillet and cook until golden brown on both sides, flipping half way through about 4 minutes per side.
Add pico de gallo and olives, and bring to a simmer.
Simmer until chicken is cooked through and sauce is slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
Serve chicken with lime wedges.


Fresh Peach Cobbler

Ripe juicy peaches with spicy cinnamon and a 
buttery cobbler crust,
baked until golden brown and delicious ~
who doesn’t like a sweet treat now and then...

Here, we all like fresh peaches and I was happy to see ripe white peaches at the farmers’ market the other day.  

July 4th Best Potato Salad

Bill has probably not met a potato salad he didn’t like, I used to take it or leave it, as in too mushy, too wet, and swimming in mayo. 

Then I made it this way...

Potato salad has been around for many cook outs, a classic for the 4th of July!  The dish has been served since the early 20th century and things haven’t changed much with it.  


This isn’t a fancy or complicated recipe...
Flavorful and irresistible, these garlic potatoes are good for any meal of the day.

I'm a fan of potatoes made about any way, with the exception of potato soup ~ found something else for dinner when Mom made that years ago. 

Down East Crab Cakes

Down East Crab Cakes 
taste great, 
less filler!

The Down East Crab Cake name comes from crabmeat mixed with eggs and sauce, 
no mayonnaise included!

Most of us love the sweet, briny crab meat that comes from the coasts.  Crab cakes started out as a measure of thrift.

Creamy Chicken-Broccoli Mac & Cheese with Mushrooms with Birdwatching on the Side

  With this version of mac and cheese, you can eat all you like ~ there’s a helping of greens is in it, as in broccoli.  Broccoli is full of vitamins and minerals and is a classic example of a superfood. 

Actually, there has not been much cooking here lately, as Bill and I have been busy “birding" for a while ~ watching 2 bird nests in bushes on the side of our house; one, a nest of cardinals and the other, a nest of robins.  

Black Forest Trifle and a Chuckle of the Day for You!

Brownies made their debut at the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893, so in my way of thinking, that officially makes brownies the state dessert for Illinois, which leads on to this decadent sweet dessert...

It has all the flavors of a Black Forest Cake, but without the fussiness of a layer cake:  it’s Black Forest Trifle.  

Chicken Cutlets Blue Bloods Way

I’ve said it before, I’m a huge fan of “Blue Bloods” TV show 
and haven’t missed one episode. 

The Blue Bloods Cookbook  
is just as good!

Dinner was Oven-fried Catfish!

I gave catfish a lighter spin by baking the fish last night.

There’s no problem in finding catfish here in the Midwest.  Virtually every body of water in Illinois contains at least one species of the catfish family, with the most common members being channel catfish, flatheads, blue catfish and several species of bullheads.

Coconut Cashew Cake

It goes by sanwin makin in Myanmar.  It's a traditional favorite sweet cake there that's full of flavor, and very moist ~ a one-bowl cake; meaning, wet and dry ingredients are mixed together in one bowl.

I’m a fan of the good taste and texture of semolina bread and was intrigued when I saw Thomas Keller on his Milk Street PBS show making this cake.  I just happen to have the The Complete Milk Street TV Show Cookbook but evidently cruised on by this recipe.

Savory Sour Cream Cornbread, it's Divine!

Cornbread is the perfect vehicle 
for sopping up the things 
that are 
on your plate!

Those cracks are a good thing in cornbread!

Everyone has their foibles ~ for me, it’s that corner slab of cornbread ~ the slice with two crispy edges.  Grandma liked it crumbled, submerged in a glass of cold buttermilk, and eaten with a spoon ~ whatever floats your boat...

Herb-Crusted Sirloin Tip Roast and More than you Wanted to Know

With beef being one of the 
Midwest’s favorite meats, 
definitely mine, 
here’s an intensely flavored sirloin tip roast!  

A lean cut from the bottom sirloin, this economical choice is delicious when roasted with a rub and carved into thin slices to enjoy its rich, deep beefy flavor.  

Roasted Robusto Italian Chicken Breasts with Mushrooms

This recipe is truly simple and seriously satisfying!

I’ve mentioned more than once that I’m a big fan of Wish-Bone Robusto Italian Dressing.  It’s not only great on salad; it does a great job of marinating meat also.

Chicken and Stuffing Bake and Some Winter Diamond Dust!

Not since 1873 has it been this cold, 
on this date, March 4th, 
here in Chicagoland, 
blame it on the polar vortex!

Our thermometer read -4° this morning, that's with a windchill of -20°.

Diamond dust over Lake Michigan, Chicago

Diamond dust has been in the air this bitter cold winter ~ tiny ice crystals falling from an apparently clear sky, when the temperatures are subzero.  In sunlight, moonlight, or artificial light, the ice crystals glitter and shine like diamonds. 

Golden Baked Turbot with a Twist

It’s the 
"champagne of the flatfish," 
according to the famous 
German TV-cook Johann Lafer. 

Turbot is not an easy fish to find in the markets around here.  So I was happy when Bubba told me that Fresh Market had turbot for sale.

Healthified Broccoli Cheddar Soup on a Cold Winter Day!

Sometimes, on a chilly day, you just need a bowl of hot, creamy, cheesy soup for a comforting meal, just not all the calories and fat though.

I found a plethora of recipes on the internet for broccoli soup and settled on this healthier version of it, a recipe courtesy of Food Network Kitchen. 

Southern Fried (Baked) Chicken ~ à la Blue Bloods

Bubba knows my weaknesses ~ 
cookbooks and “Blue Bloods!”  
 He surprised me with this 
great cookbook 
for Christmas and I could tell 
this "fried" baked chicken recipe 
would be a winner!

Southern cooks and barbecue pitmasters may want to skip right past this recipe, because it’s a bit of a Southern cooking sacrilege, per The Blue Bloods Cookbook.

Delicious ~ One-Skillet Italian Sausage Pasta!

The alluring temptation of a one-skillet meal, what cook can resist?

I’ve seen this recipe many times, many places, had the ingredients on hand, and plunged in.  The original has just 5 ingredients ~ I cooked it with 7 ~ added mushrooms and black pepper.

Heloise's Olive Pecan Spread and a Harsh Winter!

Tom Skilling is predicting lows of -22°, that’s 22° below 0°for tomorrow night, and -20° for Wednesday night-----windchill -42°!
He says the highs will be 3° Tuesday, -12° for Wednesday, and -2° Thursday.

We're having the harshest, coldest winter here in decades...

And to top it all of, we had another 6” of snow overnight! 

Just plowed!

The Best ~ Classic Chicken and Dumplings

This is an all-time favorite meal here at our house!  
And for good reason ~ 
it’s a delicious comfort dish for chilly snowy weather!

Chicken always gets top billing, but it’s the dumplings that sway people so easily.  There are a plethora of ways to make this dish, and this time I followed Paula Deen’s most of the way...

You know,

nobody can ever

cook as good as

your Mama.

~ Paula Deen

You know, nobody can ever cook as good as your mama. Paula Deen
Read more at:
You know, nobody can ever cook as good as your mama. Paula Deen
Read more at:


Jules-Alexandre Grun

ᴡᴏᴏ ʜᴏᴏ!!!

ᴡᴏᴏ ʜᴏᴏ!!!

ᴍɪɴɴɪᴇ ❤ ʀɪᴘ ❤

ᴍɪɴɴɪᴇ ❤ ʀɪᴘ ❤
May 5, 2004 - July 21, 2019--15 yrs, 77 days

ᴍᴏᴏᴄʜᴇʀ ❤ ʀɪᴘ ❤

ᴍᴏᴏᴄʜᴇʀ ❤ ʀɪᴘ ❤
May 5, 2004 – Dec 16, 2014--10 yrs, 225 days



Total Pageviews