Saturday, February 28, 2015

(Home Made) White Cheddar and Chive Potato Soup w/ Ham Sandwich

Dinner Tonight: (Home Made) White Cheddar and Chive Potato Soup w/ Ham Sandwich

 White Cheddar and Chive Potato Soup w/ Ham Sandwich

Started off the morning with some Simply Potatoes Hash Browns and a couple of Jennie - O Turkey Sausage Breakfast Links and a cup of Bigelow Decaf Green Tea. 12 degrees this morning but little to no wind chill. Mostly sunny but more snow coming in Sunday. Ran an errand for Mom and stopped off and got my Saturday Night Lotto Tickets. I'll buy a couple every now and then and watch the Ohio Lottery Show on Saturday Evening. For dinner tonight a new recipe, (Home Made) White Cheddar and Chive Potato Soup w/ Ham Sandwich.

Came across the White Cheddar and Chive Potato Soup Recipe in an issue of Cooking Light. I love a good Thick Potato Soup. Actually Campbell's Chunky Baked Potato with Cheddar and Bacon Bits is my favorite Potato Soup. So when I came across this one it seemed like a winner, and it was!

Start with Shallots and Garlic

The recipe calls for; 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 1/3 cup chopped Shallots, 2 Garlic Cloves (minced), 2 tablespoons All-Purpose Flour, 3 1/2 cups chopped Yukon Gold Potatoes (about 1 pound), 1 3/4 cups 1% Low-Fat Milk, 1 1/2 cups Organic Vegetable Broth (such as Swanson), 3/8 teaspoon Kosher Salt, 1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper, 2 ounces Sharp White Cheddar Cheese (shredded about 1/2 cup), 1/3 cup Fat-Free Sour Cream (divided), and 2 tablespoons minced fresh Chives.

To prepare it heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Add shallots and garlic; sauté 1 1/2 minutes or until tender. Sprinkle flour over pan; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add potatoes, milk, broth, salt, and pepper to pan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Remove pan from heat. Mash potato mixture with a potato masher to desired consistency. Stir in cheese until melted. Stir in 1 tablespoon sour cream. Place 1 cup soup in each of 4 bowls. Top each serving with about 1 tablespoon sour cream and 1 1/2 teaspoons minced chives and serve! Makes a delicious, thick, and chunky Potato Soup. If you like you can add some crumbled Jennie - O Turkey Bacon to it for even more flavor. Got one of those Keeper Recipes.

Boar's Head Smoked Honey Ham

To go with the Soup I made a Ham and Swiss Sandwich. Using; Boar's Head Smoked Honey Ham, Sargento Ultra Thin Swiss Cheese, Kroger Brand Whole Grain Hamburger Buns, and topped with Kroger Private Selection Sweet Hot Stone Ground Mustard.  (my favorite Mustard.) For a dessert/snack later Organic Whole Grain Tortilla Chips with Simple Truth Organic Black Bean and Corn Salsa.

White Cheddar and Chive Potato Soup
Luscious, creamy potato soup uses just one pan for fast weeknight comfort and even faster cleanup. We love the look and tang of sharp white cheddar.

Yield: Serves 4


1 tablespoon canola oil
1/3 cup chopped shallots
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 1/2 cups chopped Yukon gold potatoes (about 1 pound)
1 3/4 cups 1% low-fat milk
1 1/2 cups organic vegetable broth (such as Swanson)
3/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded (about 1/2 cup)
1/3 cup fat-free sour cream, divided
2 tablespoons minced fresh chives
1. Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add oil; swirl to coat. Add shallots and garlic; sauté 1 1/2 minutes or until tender. Sprinkle flour over pan; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly with a whisk.

2. Add potatoes, milk, broth, salt, and pepper to pan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Remove pan from heat. Mash potato mixture with a potato masher to desired consistency. Stir in cheese until melted. Stir in 1 tablespoon sour cream. Place 1 cup soup in each of 4 bowls. Top each serving with about 1 tablespoon sour cream and 1 1/2 teaspoons minced chives.

Nutritional Information
Amount per serving
Calories: 263  Fat: 9.6g  Saturated fat: 4.2g  Monounsaturated fat: 2.5g  Polyunsaturated fat: 1.1g  Protein: 11g Carbohydrate: 34g  Fiber: 3g  Cholesterol: 20mg  Iron: 1mg  Sodium: 562mg  Calcium: 286mg

Flip My Food with Chef Jeff

I've been watching the show Flip My Food with Chef Jeff and following the website of the same name for a while now. I just wanted to pass along the links to the site to everyone. It's full of some fantastic and delicious recipes. BBQ, Cajun, Side Dishes, Healthy, the site has it all. Check it out when you get a chance. It's shown locally here at Noon Monday-Friday.  Below is one of the recipes you can find on the site. Below is one of the many fantastic recipes you find on the site.

Fried Chicken and Waffles


2 chicken breasts
2 ½ cups all purpose flour
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon cracked black pepper
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 cups light buttermilk
2 eggs, farm fresh
Salt and pepper to taste
Peanut oil for frying
Syrup topping



-      Season chicken breast with salt and black pepper to taste

-      In a bowl mix together 1 cup all purpose flour, salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder and cayenne pepper

-      Dust chicken breast in all purpose flour mix

-      Heat peanut oil to 375-degrees and add chicken breast and fry for 6 to 8 minutes

-      Add remaining all purpose flour, baking powder, buttermilk and eggs to bowl and whisk to smooth consistency to make waffle batter

-      Heat waffle maker and add ½ cup of batter and cook for 1 to 2 minutes

-      Plate fried chicken over waffles and add syrup to serve

Saturday's Chili Recipe - Chili

This week's Saturday's Chili Recipe is Chili. Plain and simple C-H-I-L-I. It's comes from one of my favorite sites, CooksRecipes. Need a recipe of any kind check them out!


A slow cooker recipe for a hot, comforting chili packed with beef, beans and spicy flavors.

Recipe Ingredients:

2 pounds stew beef, cubed into bite sized pieces
1 large sweet onion
2 jalapeños, seeded and minced
1/2 (4 fluid ounce) bottle mesquite flavored liquid smoke
2 heads garlic, minced
1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes with jalapeños
2 (15 ounce) cans chili flavored beans with jalapeños
1 (14.5 ounce) can red kidney beans
1 (14.5 ounce) can tomato sauce with garlic and onions
1/2 cup Splenda® Brown Sugar Blend
Hot pepper sauce, to taste

Cooking Directions:

1 - Combine beef, onions, jalapeños, liquid smoke and garlic in a slow cooker.
2 - Cook on low for 6 hours.
3 - After 6 hours, add the tomatoes, chili beans, kidney beans, tomato sauce, Splenda® Brown Sugar Blend to the beef. Add hot pepper sauce if desired.
4 - Cook for an additional 2 hours.
5 - Taste the chili after 2 hours to determine the need for additional Splenda®Brown Sugar Blend or hot pepper sauce.
6 - Garnish with diced jalapeños, chopped and shredded onions, and cheese if desired.
Makes 12 servings.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (1/12 of recipe): Calories: 400; Calories from Fat: 180; Total Fat: 20g; Saturated Fat: 7g; Cholesterol: 50mg; Sodium: 810mg; Total Carbs: 35g; Dietary Fiber: 7g; Sugars: 11g; Protein: 21g.

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

Some Scallop tips from the Better Homes and Garden website...

Scallop Cooking Basics

* Regardless of the cooking method you choose, follow a few general tips when working with scallops.
* Thaw scallops, if frozen. You can thaw them several hours or overnight in the refrigerator, or you can thaw them in the microwave if you take care to not cook them in the microwave. Use the defrost setting (30 percent power) and check them every 30 seconds. Do not thaw them at room temperature.
* Rinse scallops and pat them dry with paper towels before cooking. If scallops have too much moisture on the outside, they won't brown properly.
* Cut large scallops in half to assure even cooking (as shown above).
* Minutes count -- cook scallops just until done or until they are opaque; otherwise they can get tough quickly.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Buffalo Bone in Ribeye Steak w/ Mushrooms and Scalloped Potato Casserole

Dinner Tonight: Buffalo Bone in Ribeye Steak w/ Mushrooms and Scalloped Potato Casserole

Cold morning to start the day (5 degrees) but lots of sunshine all day but only a high in the teens. Started off with a Breakfast Sandwich; I Egg Sunnyside Up, a Jennie - O Turkey Sausage Pattie (made from the Jennie - O Ground Breakfast Sausage), a sprinkle of Sargento Reduced Fat Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese, on a Healthy Life Whole Grain Muffin. Healthy and delicious! From that a good house cleaning, a small load of laundry, and took apart 3 fans we had in the house and cleaned the insides of them up. Got the big gun of Wild Idea Buffalo out for dinner tonight! I prepared a Buffalo Bone in Ribeye Steak w/ Mushrooms and Scalloped Potato Casserole.

Used the Wild Idea Buffalo 16 oz. Bone-In Ribeye Steak (Cowboy Steak), And what a beautiful cut of meat these Ribeyes are! It’s about 1 1/2″ thick with just enough of marbling to make it perfect. To prepare it I preheated the oven on 400 degrees. I then rubbed the Ribeye with a light coat of Extra Virgin Olive Oil and then seasoned it with a sprinkle of Garlic Powder, a shake of Ground Roasted Cumin, and McCormick Grinder Sea Salt and Black Peppercorn. To start I pan fried it, using a Cast Iron Skillet on medium heat about 3 minutes per side. Then I put the Skillet in the oven and roasted it until it had internal temperature of 150 degrees for a medium rare, and it came out perfect, love using Cast Iron Skillets; from the stove to the oven! After removing it from the oven I put the Ribeye on a plate and lest it rest for 5 minutes before serving. These Steaks are so moist and tender and with that distinct Wild idea Buffalo flavor. The juices off the Steak was just incredible! Way to big for one meal, I’ll have the leftover for breakfast or lunch tomorrow. Love that Wild Idea Buffalo!

Served it with some Sauteed Steak Cut Mushrooms, could have made a meal out of these! Seasoned with Ground Roasted Cumin, Dried Thyme, Dried Rosemary, and Sea Salt.

I prepared a box of Idahoan Scalloped Potato Casserole. Another easy to prepare and delicious dish. A breeze to make just mix the ingredients and bake at 450 degrees for 25 minutes and you have some delicious Scalloped Potatoes. Plus their only 160 calories and 20 carbs.

Wild Idea Buffalo 16 oz. Bone-In Ribeye Steak (Cowboy Steak)
The Ribeye cap and bone add the extra richness to this cut. Our Bone-In Ribeyes make for a perfect presentation, and luckily they aren’t just for cowboys. Our bone-in ribeye was a featured winner of the 2012 Cooking Light Artisan Products Award. Cut to 16 oz. each.


Product Description
There’s no better way to start a hearty Scalloped homestyle casserole than with world-famous Idaho® potatoes, which is why you’ll taste only 100% grown-in-Idaho potatoes in this rich & creamy side. For family meals or for special occasions, this creamy, delicious dish is sure to please.

Baking Instructions

PREHEAT oven to 450°F. COMBINE potatoes and sauce mix in 1 1/2 quart baking dish.
STIR in 1 1/2 cups boiling water, 3/4 cup milk, and 1 1/2 Tbsp. margarine or butter with whisk.
BAKE uncovered for 25 minutes or until top is golden brown and potatoes are tender (sauce will thicken slightly when cooling).
Remove from oven and let stand a few minutes before serving.
BAKING NOTES: To prepare 2 casseroles at once, double all ingredients, increase baking dish size accordingly, and bake about 30 min. To bake potatoes and roast meat at the same time, bake at 375°F for about 45 min; 350°F for about 50 min; or 325°F for about 60 min.

Jennie - O Turkey Recipe of the Week - Slow Cooker Turkey Cheese Dip

Got a good one for the Jennie - O Turkey Recipe of the Week, Slow Cooker Turkey Cheese Dip. Made with JENNIE-O® Ground Turkey and JENNIE-O® Lean Hot Italian Turkey Sausage. You can find this and all the other healthy and delicious recipes on the Jennie - O website.

Slow Cooker Turkey Cheese Dip

1 (20-ounce) package JENNIE-O® Ground Turkey
1 (19.5-ounce) package JENNIE-O® Lean Hot Italian Turkey Sausage, chopped
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, cubed
1 (8-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
1 (8-ounce) container sour cream
1 (8-ounce) container cottage cheese
8 ounces Cheddar cheese, cubed
1 medium onion, diced
1 (11-ounce) can sliced jalapeño peppers, drained
1 (1-pound) package processed cheese, cubed
3 cloves garlic, minced
crackers or corn chips, if desired

Cook ground turkey and sausage as specified on the package. Always cook to well-done, 165°F. as measured by a meat thermometer; drain. Transfer to slow cooker.

Add cream cheese, tomatoes, sour cream, cottage cheese, Cheddar cheese, onion, jalapeño peppers, processed cheese and garlic to slow cooker. Cover and cook on HIGH 1 ½ to 2 hours or until cheese is melted. Serve with crackers or corn chips, if desired

Nutritional Information
Calories 280 Fat 20g
Protein 19g Cholesterol 80mg
Carbohydrates 7g Sodium 780mg
Fiber 1g Saturated Fat 10g
Sugars 3g

Diabetic Recipes: Low-Carb Desserts

Have your desserts and eat them too! From the Diabetic Living On Line website it's Diabetic Recipes: Low-Carb Desserts, Enjoy!

Diabetic Recipes: Low-Carb Desserts
If you thought desserts were out of your meals forever, think again! From cheesecake to cookies and ice cream to cakes, here are delicious diabetic dessert recipes that have 15 grams of carbohydrate or less per serving.

Barley-Oat Chocolate Chip Cookies

Whole wheat flour, rolled oats, barley flour, oat bran, and wheat bran pack these yummy chocolate chip cookies with grainy goodness. And they're only 11 grams of carb per cookie!....

Incredible Apple Tart

Jonathan, Rome Beauty, Winesap, and York Imperial apples are all great choices for this party-special tart. You and your guests will never believe that this diabetes-friendly recipe is only 15 grams of carb per serving......

* Click the link below to get all the Low-Carb Desserts

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

Thank you to Viggie for passing these Baking Hints along.....

Grease pans using a piece of paper towel, rub a small amount of shortening, butter or margarine evenly over the bottom and on sides of pans, if directed. A small amount of pan spray may be used and spread over the pan, also using the paper towel technique.

Cool cakes completely in the pans before trying to remove them. Don’t cool on the stove where there’s heat, they’re best cooled on a rack placed on the counter. Gently insert a knife between the outside of the cake and the inside of the tin. Run it along the edges to loosen things up before turning over.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Baked Bone-In Whole Chicken Breast w/ Steam Crisp Sweet Corn and Cut Green Beans & Potatoes

Dinner Tonight: Baked Bone-In Whole Chicken Breast w/ Steam Crisp Sweet Corn and Cut Green Beans & Potatoes

Colder day out there today, back to a wind chill. They had predicted some snow overnight but it missed us, thankfully!. After a light breakfast, Whole Grain English Muffin topped with Sugarless Black Berry Jam, I worked out and done some minor chores around the house. Then and afternoon of some Computer sprucing up and cleaning. Updated some programs, deleted some programs, ran all the computer checks and such. Quiet day! For dinner tonight I prepared a Baked Bone-In Whole Chicken Breast w/ Steam Crisp Sweet Corn and Cut Green Beans & Potatoes.

I used the PERDUE® OVEN READY Whole Seasoned Roaster Bone-In Breast. As it says “Oven Ready’, already seasoned, and little clean-up needed plus always delicious. To prepare it just preheat the oven to 400ºF. Cut open outer bag and remove Oven Ready Roaster Bone-In Breast, sealed in a cooking bag. Place in a shallow roasting pan, seasoned side up. Cut one small 1″ slit in cooking bag over the breast to vent during cooking. If cooking from Fresh: Place pan with breast (still in cooking bag) on lower shelf of oven and roast for approximately 80-90 minutes, until internal temperature of the breast reaches 180ºF. Comes out piping hot, well seasoned, and delicious! Plenty leftovers for some Chicken Sandwiches or Burritos! Such an easy way to have an excellent Baked Chicken Dinner!

Got the big three of vegetables tonight; Corn, Green Beans, and Potatoes! For one side I heated up a can of Green Giant Steam Crisp Super Sweet Yellow and White Whole Kernel Corn. My favorite canned corn, delicious Sweet Corn. Then I also heated up a couple of cans of Del Monte Cut Green Beans & Potatoes. Love this, contains my 2 favorites of Green Beans and Potatoes all in one can. We also had Healthy Life Whole Grain Sliced Bread. For dessert later a bowl of Breyer's Low Carb Vanilla Ice Cream.

* And I got to try out my newest Kitchen Aid, Bear Paws. Great purchase I love using these. They lift and carve hot food, shred chicken and pork for sandwiches, and the handles stay cool. These are great to have around the Kitchen. I left the details of these at the bottom of the post.

PERDUE® OVEN READY Whole Seasoned Roaster Bone-In Breast (3 lbs.)

Deliciously seasoned and juicy, whole bone-in chicken breast. Oven ready for convenience. Cooks perfectly in the bag for easy clean up.

*Ingredients: Chicken, water, salt, potassium and sodium phosphates, brown sugar, dextrose, carrageenan, yeast extract, maltodextrin, natural flavor.

*Seasoning Ingredients: Dextrose, modified food starch, onion, maltodextrin, natural flavor, garlic, cottonseed oil, dried carrot, xanthan gum, dried parsley, calcium chloride, potassium chloride, carrageenan.
Keep refrigerated or frozen. Thaw in refrigerator or microwave. Cook thoroughly.
**If breast temperature is below 180ºF, return to oven and continue cooking, checking the temperature every 10 minutes until the temperature reaches 180ºF.

• Preheat oven to 400ºF. Cut open outer bag and remove Oven Ready Roaster Bone-In Breast, sealed in a cooking bag. Place in a shallow roasting pan, seasoned side up.
• Cut one small 1″ slit in cooking bag over the breast to vent during cooking. Note: Cooking bag will expand during cooking; allow enough room for the bag to expand without touching oven rack or walls.
• Cook from Fresh: Place pan with breast (still in cooking bag) on lower shelf of oven and roast for approximately 80-90 minutes, until internal temperature of the breast reaches 180ºF.**
• Cook from Frozen: Place pan with breast (still in cooking bag) on lower shelf of oven and roast for approximately 80-90 minutes until internal temperature of the breast reaches 180ºF.**
• Remove from oven and let stand for 10 minutes. Cut open cooking bag (use care to avoid hot steam and juices) and transfer breast to serving plate or cutting board. Remaining juices in bag can be used for a delicious seasoned gravy.

Nutrition Facts:

Serving Size 4oz (112g)
Servings Per Container about 11
Amount Per Serving (* % of Daily Value)
Calories 170
Calories from Fat 80
Total Fat 9g (14%)
Saturated Fat 2.5g (13%)
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 60mg (20%)
Sodium 360mg (15%)
Total Carbohydrate 0g (0%)
Dietary Fiber 0g (0%)
Sugars 0g
Protein 20g

Bear Paw Meat Handlers

* Lift and carve hot food
* Dishwasher safe
* Shred meat and chicken
* Great to use for outdoor grilling or in the kitchen
* Stay cool handles

Bear Paws are like an extension of your own hands. Made from hard, durable plastic, they are perfect for lifting hot food items from the pan to the platter. Securely holds food while carving. Perfect as a meat shredding tool.

Herb and Spice of the Week - Parsley

Parsley leaves and flowers

Parsley or garden parsley (Petroselinum crispum) is a species of Petroselinum in the family Apiaceae, native to the central Mediterranean region (southern Italy, Algeria, and Tunisia), naturalized elsewhere in Europe, and widely cultivated as a herb, a spice, and a vegetable.

Where it grows as a biennial, in the first year, it forms a rosette of tripinnate leaves 10–25 cm long with numerous 1–3 cm leaflets, and a taproot used as a food store over the winter.

Parsley is widely used in Middle Eastern, European, and American cooking. Curly leaf parsley is often used as a garnish. In central and eastern Europe and in western Asia, many dishes are served with fresh green chopped parsley sprinkled on top. Root parsley is very common in central and eastern European cuisines, where it is used as a snack or a vegetable in many soups, stews, and casseroles.

Garden parsley is a bright green, biennial, plant in temperate climates, or an annual herb in subtropical and tropical areas.

Where it grows as a biennial, in the first year, it forms a rosette of tripinnate leaves 10–25 cm long with numerous 1–3 cm leaflets, and a taproot used as a food store over the winter. In the second year, it grows a flowering stem to 75 cm tall with sparser leaves and flat-topped 3–10 cm diameter umbels with numerous 2 mm diameter yellow to yellowish-green flowers. The seeds are ovoid, 2–3 mm long, with prominent style remnants at the apex. One of the compounds of the essential oil is apiol. The plant normally dies after seed maturation.

Parsley leaves

Parsley grows best in moist, well-drained soil, with full sun. It grows best between 22–30 °C, and usually is grown from seed. Germination is slow, taking four to six weeks, and it often is difficult because of furanocoumarins in its seed coat. Typically, plants grown for the leaf crop are spaced 10 cm apart, while those grown as a root crop are spaced 20 cm apart to allow for the root development.

Parsley attracts several species of wildlife. Some swallowtail butterflies use parsley as a host plant for their larvae; their caterpillars are black and green striped with yellow dots, and will feed on parsley for two weeks before turning into butterflies. Bees and other nectar-feeding insects also visit the flowers. Birds such as the goldfinch feed on the seeds.

Leaf parsley
The two main groups of parsley used as herbs are curly leaf (i.e.) (P. crispum crispum group; syn. P. crispum var. crispum) and Italian, or flat leaf (P. crispum neapolitanum group; syn. P. crispum var. neapolitanum); of these, the neapolitanum group more closely resembles the natural wild species. Flat-leaved parsley is preferred by some gardeners as it is easier to cultivate, being more tolerant of both rain and sunshine, and has a stronger flavor, (though this is disputed while curly leaf parsley is preferred by others because of its more decorative appearance in garnishing. A third type, sometimes grown in southern Italy, has thick leaf stems resembling celery.

Root parsley

Another type of parsley is grown as a root vegetable, the Hamburg root parsley (P. crispum radicosum group, syn. P. crispum var. tuberosum). This type of parsley produces much thicker roots than types cultivated for their leaves. Although seldom used in Britain and the United States, root parsley is common in central and eastern European cuisine, where it is used in soups and stews, or simply eaten raw, as a snack (similar to carrots).

Although root parsley looks similar to the parsnip, its taste is quite different from it. Parsnips are among the closest relatives of parsley in the family Apiaceae. A similarity of the name of parsnips to turnip is a folk misattribution, parsnip meaning "forked turnip"; it is not closely related to real turnips biologically.

Parsley is widely used in Middle Eastern, European, Brazilian and American cooking. Curly leaf parsley is used often as a garnish. Green parsley is used frequently as a garnish on potato dishes (boiled or mashed potatoes), on rice dishes (risotto or pilaf), on fish, fried chicken, lamb, goose, and steaks, as well in meat or vegetable stews (including shrimp creole, beef bourguignon, goulash, or chicken paprikash).

In central and eastern Europe and in western Asia, many dishes are served with fresh green, chopped parsley sprinkled on top. In southern and central Europe, parsley is part of bouquet garni, a bundle of fresh herbs used as an ingredient in stocks, soups, and sauces. Freshly chopped green parsley is used as a topping for soups such as chicken soup, green salads, or salads such as salade Olivier, and on open sandwiches with cold cuts or pâtés.

Persillade is a mixture of chopped garlic and chopped parsley in French cuisine.

Parsley is the main ingredient in Italian salsa verde, which is a mixed condiment of parsley, capers, anchovies, garlic, and bread soaked in vinegar. It is an Italian custom to serve it with bollito misto or fish. Gremolata, a mixture of parsley, garlic, and lemon zest, is a traditional accompaniment to the Italian veal stew, ossobuco alla milanese.

In England, parsley sauce is a roux-based sauce, commonly served over fish or gammon.

Root parsley is very common in Central and Eastern European cuisines, where it is used as a snack or a vegetable in many soups, stews, and casseroles, and as ingredient for broth.

In Brazil, freshly chopped parsley (salsa [ˈsawsɐ]) and freshly chopped scallion (cebolinha [sebuˈɫĩɲɐ]) are the main ingredients in the herb seasoning called cheiro-verde ([ˈʃejɾu ˈveʁdʒi], literally "green aroma"), which is used as key seasoning for major Brazilian dishes, including meat, chicken, fish, rice, beans, stews, soups, vegetables, salads, condiments, sauces and stocks. Cheiro-verde is sold in food markets as a bundle of both types of fresh herbs. In some Brazilian regions, chopped parsley may be replaced by chopped cilantro (coentro [ˈkwẽtɾu]) in the mixture.

Parsley is a key ingredient in several Middle Eastern salads such as Lebanesetabbouleh.

Freeze-dried parsley

Parsley is a source of Flavonoid, and Antioxidants (especially luteolin), apigenin, folic acid, vitamin K, vitamin C, and vitamin A. Half a of tablespoon (a gram) of dried parsley contains about 6.0 µg of lycopene and 10.7 µg of alpha carotene as well as 82.9 µg of Lutein+Zeaxanthin and 80.7 µg of beta carotene.

Excessive consumption of parsley should be avoided by pregnant women. It is safe in normal food quantities, but large amounts may have uterotonic effects.

Diet-Friendly Comfort Foods

Diet-Friendly Comfort Foods, all from the EatingWell website!

Diet-Friendly Comfort Foods

We've made these American classics healthier and diet friendly so that you can indulge and stay slim.
Everyone has one—that special dish that immediately makes you feel good. Unfortunately, comfort foods are notorious diet derailers: high in calories and saturated fat. But don’t despair: we’ve lightened your favorite recipes so they can fit within your calorie goals, while keeping the traditional flavors intact.

Loaded Twice-Baked Potatoes
Potatoes are one of the great comfort foods, especially when stuffed with a satisfying mixture of lean ground beef and broccoli florets plus reduced-fat sour cream and Cheddar cheese. Add a tossed salad and you have a healthy and hearty meal that will leave you feeling good.....

Oven-Fried Chicken
Great news—crunchy, flavorful fried chicken can be healthy. We marinate skinless chicken in buttermilk to keep it juicy. A light coating of flour, sesame seeds and spices, misted with olive oil, forms an appealing crust during baking. And with only 7 grams of fat per serving rather than the 20 in typical fried chicken—that is good news.....

The addition of richly flavored dried mushrooms and the whole-grain goodness of bulgur increases the vitamins and minerals and decreases the saturated fat of this meatloaf. The loaf is free-form, rather than baked in a loaf pan, which means more delicious, browned crust. This recipe is large enough to feed a big group or, even better, have leftovers for a cold sandwich the next day.

* Click the link below to get all the Diet-Friendly Comfort Foods

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

Buying tips for Shrimp....

Not sure which shrimp to buy? Here are a few flavor profiles to guide you:
* Tiger shrimp: Mild flavor with a sweet taste and a crunchy texture.
* White shrimp: Mild flavor with a slightly salty, shrimpy taste and firm texture. Great for salads and stir-fry.
* Pink shrimp: Mild to medium flavor with a medium texture. Perfect for shrimp cocktail.
* Brown shrimp: Full, robust flavor with medium texture. Best when used for full-flavor dishes like gumbo or for frying.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Cubed Pork Steak Sandwich w/ Baked Fries

Dinner Tonight: Cubed Pork Steak Sandwich w/ Baked Fries

Not too bad out this morning, compared to what we've been having. Plenty of sunshine and in the 20's today. Had to go to the family Doctor for my 4 month checkup, on sugar, cholesterol, and such. Then ran an errand for Mom and stopped by Walmart, needed a package of the Aunt Mille's Reduced Calories Hamburger Buns. Walmart is the only store that carries them now for some reason. Back home and not a whole lot going on., some light housework was it. Prepared a Cubed Pork Steak Sandwich w/ Baked Fries for dinner tonight.

I had bought a couple of packages of Cubed Pork Steak at Kroger last week, I froze one and had the other package last week. Got the other package out and let it thaw overnight in the fridge. To prepare it I seasoned it with McCormick Grinder Sea Salt and Black Peppercorn, a shake of Garlic Powder, Hungarian Paprika, and a couple of shakes of Dried Thyme. Then rolled it in flour, shaking off the excess. Next I heated up a medium size skillet, that I drizzled with Extra Virgin Olive Oil, on medium high heat. Added my Cubed Pork and fried both sides about 4 minutes per side, till each side was golden brown. As the previous package of Cubed Pork it came out delicious! Moist and very tender with a fantastic flavor from the Paprika and all the other ingredients. Served this one as a Sandwich using a Aunt Millie's Reduced Calorie Whole Grain Bun.

For a side I baked some Ore Ida Steak Fries, served these with a side of Hunt’s Ketchup for dipping. For dessert/snack later I had some thin slices of Boar's Head Beef Salami along with some Ritz Whole Wheat Crackers.

Boar's Head Beef Salami
Made of carefully selected cuts of beef combined with real spices. Cube and serve with our Havarti Cheese or use for salads and sandwiches.

* Gluten Free
* Milk Free
* Sugar Free
Not a reduced calorie food.

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size Serv Size 2 oz (56g)
Serving Per Container Varied
Amount Per Serving
Calories 120 Calories fom Fat 80
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 9g 13%
Saturated Fat 3.5g 17%
Trans Fat 0g
Monounsaturated Fat 4.5g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 35mg 11%
Sodium 470mg 19%
Potassium 140mg 4%
Total Carbohydrate 0g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Sugars 0g
Protein 10g

Ritz FRESH STACKS Whole Wheat

Whole wheat goodness, on the go. Same great original RITZ taste baked with whole wheat, in convenient Fresh Stacks!

Serving Size 15g
Servings per Container about 22
Amount Per Serving
Calories 70 Calories from Fat 25
  % Daily Value*
Total Fat g 4%
Saturated Fat 0.5g 3%
Trans Fat 0g 0%
Monounsaturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 120mg 5%
Potassium 30mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 11g 4%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Sugars 2g 0%
Protein 1g 0%
Vitamin A 0% Calcium 0%
Vitamin C 0% Iron 0%

Chicken Tetrazzini

From the Cooking Light website, Chicken Tetrazzini. A comfort food Casserole classic!

Chicken Tetrazzini
A classic that makes great use of leftover turkey or chicken. It’s so creamy and comforting that you’ll be glad it makes two casseroles—one for now and one for later.

Cooking Light MARCH 2003

Yield: Serves 12 (serving size: about 1 1/3 cups; 6 servings per casserole)

1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Cooking spray
1 cup finely chopped onion
2/3 cup finely chopped celery
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 (8-ounce) packages presliced mushrooms
1/2 cup dry sherry
3 ounces all-purpose flour (about 2/3 cup)
3 (14.5-ounce) cans fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
2 1/4 cups (9 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese, divided
1/2 cup (4 ounces) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
7 cups hot cooked vermicelli (about 1 pound uncooked pasta)
4 cups chopped cooked chicken breast (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1 (1-ounce) slice white bread
1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. Melt butter in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add onion, celery, black pepper, salt, and mushrooms; sauté 4 minutes or until mushrooms are tender. Add sherry; cook 1 minute.

3. Weigh or lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Gradually add flour to pan; cook 3 minutes, stirring constantly (mixture will be thick) with a whisk. Gradually add broth, stirring constantly. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat.

4. Add 1 ¾ cups Parmesan cheese and cream cheese, stirring with a whisk until cream cheese melts. Add pasta and chicken; stir until blended. Divide pasta mixture between 2 (8-inch-square) glass or ceramic baking dishes coated with cooking spray.

5. Place bread in food processor; pulse 10 times or until coarse crumbs form. Combine breadcrumbs and ½ cup Parmesan cheese; sprinkle evenly over pasta.

6. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly. Remove casserole from oven; let stand 15 minutes.

To freeze unbaked casserole: Prepare through Step 5. Cool completely in refrigerator. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing to remove as much air as possible. Wrap with heavy-duty foil. Store in freezer for up to 2 months.

To prepare frozen unbaked casserole: Thaw casserole completely in refrigerator (about 24 hours). Preheat oven to 350°. Remove foil; reserve foil. Remove plastic wrap; discard wrap. Cover casserole with reserved foil; bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 1 hour or until golden and bubbly. Let stand 15 minutes.

This recipe was updated for the November, 2012 25th anniversary issue.

Nutritional Information
Amount per serving
Calories: 422  Fat: 12.1g  Saturated fat: 6.5g  Monounsaturated fat: 2.7g  Polyunsaturated fat: 0.8g  Protein: 35g Carbohydrate: 39.6g  Fiber: 2.3g  Cholesterol: 76mg  Iron: 2.7mg  Sodium: 702mg  Calcium: 272mg

Wild Idea Buffalo Recipe of the Week - New Mexico Green Chili

Got a good one for this week's Wild Idea Buffalo Recipe of the Week, New Mexico Green Chili. Using Wild Idea Ground Buffalo and Wild Idea bulk Chorizo. Another good one from Jill O'Brien of Wild Idea Buffalo.

New Mexico Green Chili
By: Jill O'Brien

New Mexico Green Chili
This recipe is super easy and quick to make. Before I added the cilantro, I wasn’t so sure if the seasonings were in balance, but after adding it, it was a game changer, and was just terrific! Serve chili by itself, and accompany with with cornbread, or tortillas. Or, pour the chili over squash, enchiladas, or chips and top with cheese, just to name a few!

1 – pound Wild Idea Ground Buffalo
1 – pound – Wild Idea bulk Chorizo
4 – tablespoons salted butter
3 – onions, diced, about 3 cups
3 – garlic cloves, minced, about 2 tablespoons
2 ½ – tablespoons cumin
2 – tablespoons salt
1½ – tablespoons Mexican oregano
1½ – tablespoons black pepper
½ – tablespoons chili powder
¼ – cup masa/corn flour
2 – pounds roasted Hatch green chilies, flash processed or diced
2 – cups organic chicken broth
1 – bottle Tecate or other beer
2 – tablespoons lime
1 – tablespoon sugar
1 – bunch cilantro, chopped
*Optional, 2 – cups cherry tomatoes, chopped
*Grated queso or pepper jack cheese

1)   In heavy pot, over medium high heat, melt the butter. Add the ground meats, breaking into pieces to the pan, along with the onions, garlic and spices, stirring occasionally as the meat and onions brown.
2)   Sprinkle corn flour over browned meat and stir.
3)   Stir in green chilies, beer, and broth, and bring to a full boil.
4)   Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and simmer for a half hour, covered.
5)   Remove lid and simmer for an additional half hour uncovered, stirring occasionally.
6)   Stir in the lime and the sugar. Turn the  heat off and cover until you are ready to serve.
7)   Right before serving stir in cilantro and season to taste.
8)   Serve with diced tomatoes and cheese for toppings.

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

Kick up the flavor of your Chicken....

To tenderize chicken and give it a unique flavor, try basting it with a small of amount of white wine while it cooks.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Chicken Breast Strips w/ Cut Green Beans and Mashed Potatoes

Dinner Tonight: Chicken Breast Strips w/ Cut Green Beans and Mashed Potatoes

It's been a hectic day around here today! Had a light Breakfast and worked out. Then off to Kroger to pick up a few items for Mom and myself. Came back home and I had to follow Mom over so she could drop her car off to be worked on, nothing serious. Back home and I had to work on the clothes dryer, a leg on the base came off so I had repair good enough to run until the Repairman can come over and replace it. I had planned to do a new recipe but sure as I would start to prepare it, the car repair would call and I would have to leave to take Mom to pick it up. (and they did!) So it was a simple and easily prepared meal tonight, Chicken Breast Strips w/ Cut Green Beans and Mashed Potatoes.

Nothing easier and more delicious than Pilgrim’s Southern Style Breast Strips, it’s always a great go to when you want that easy to prepare meal! It’s the best Frozen Chicken that I’ve found by far. Very easy to prepare; Preheat oven to 350° F. Arrange frozen chicken breast fritters in a single layer on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes, to an internal temperature of 165° F as measured by use of a food thermometer placed in the thickest part of the chicken breast fritter. And Chicken is served! As I said it’s some of the best frozen Chicken you can find! Excellent seasoned breading and very meaty, and easy to prepare. Served it with a side of JB’s Fat Boy Sticky Stuff BBQ Sauce.

For one side I heated up a can of Del Monte Cut Green Beans. Then I microwaved some Betty Crocker Creamy Butter Mashed potatoes. It comes in a microwavable cup, just add water and microwave. I also had a slice of Klosterman Wheat Bread that I buttered with I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter. For dessert later a Healthy Choice Dark Fudge Swirl Frozen Greek Yogurt.

Pilgrim’s Southern Style Breast Strips

Pilgrim’s Southern Style Breast Strips evoke memories of growing up in a sleepy southern town. The crickets chirping, the moss hanging from the trees, the air humid and everything moving slow in the heat. And your grandmother’s delicious home cooking brought the entire family around the table on the weekends.

Our Southern Style Breast Strips feature a juicy piece of chicken with a breading just right to deliver that southern flair. Our special blend of spices and seasonings with the whole muscle goodness of white breast meat will please kids and old-timers alike.

Ideal as:

*Lunch or Dinner Entrées
*Crowd Pleasers

Cooking Instructions:

Oven: Preheat oven to 350° F. Arrange frozen chicken breast fritters in a single layer on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes until no pink remains or an internal temperature of 165° F as measured by use of a food thermometer placed in the thickest part of the chicken breast fritter.

Fryer: Heat oil to 350° F. Fry frozen chicken breast fritters for 6 minutes or an internal temperature of 165° F as measured by use of a food thermometer placed in the thickest part of the chicken breast fritter.

Due to variations in equipment, heating times and/or temperature may require adjustment. DO NOT MICROWAVE.

Nutritional Guide
Serving Size: 4 oz. (112g)
Calories per Serving: 190

Servings per Container: About 8
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 6 g 9 %
Cholesterol 40 mg 13 %
Sodium 940 mg 39 %
Total Carbs 17 g 6 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g 4 %
Sugars 1 g
Protein 17 g

Our Best Low-Carb Pasta Recipes

From the Diabetic Living On Line website, Our Best Low-Carb Pasta Recipes. Now you can have your Pasta and eat it too!

Our Best Low-Carb Pasta Recipes
Carb control is essential in maintaining healthy blood sugar levels, but that doesn’t mean you have to completely cut out noodles. With pasta salads, soups, and traditional spaghetti, our healthy pasta recipes will satisfy your cravings for the hearty comfort foods without weighing you down.

Chicken Alfredo

Ribbons of fresh zucchini and snipped parsley add lively color and nutrients to this easy chicken pasta recipe featuring whole grain noodles, lean chicken, and a light, creamy homemade Alfredo sauce.....

Poblano Pasta Salad

Taste a touch of the Southwest with this low-calorie pasta salad that’s perfect for a relaxed afternoon on the patio. Make it ahead of time and add the dressing just before serving.....

*Click the link below to get their Best Low-Carb Pasta Recipes

Diabetic Dish of the- Fruit Kabobs

Add some fruit to your meals, and it's Diabetic Friendly!

Fruit Kabobs


3/4 cup bite size Cantaloupe Chunks
3/4 cup bite size Honeydew Melon Chunks
3/4 cup small fresh Strawberries, hulled
3/4 cup bite - size fresh Pineapple chunks
1 small Banana cut into 1 - inch - thick slices
1 cup Orange Juice
1/4 cup Lime Juice
1 6 - ounce Vanilla Low - Fat or Fat - Free Yogurt
2 tablespoons frozen Orange Juice Concentrate, thawed
Ground Nutmeg or Ground Cinnamon (Optional)


1 - On eight 6 - inch skewers, alternately thread Fruit chunks and slices. Place Kabobs in a glass baking dish. In a small bowl combine Orange Juice and Lime Juice; pour evenly over Kabobs. Cover; chill Kabobs for at least 30 minutes or up to 60 minutes, turning occasionally.

2 - Meanwhile, for Dip, in a small bowl stir together Yogurt and Orange Concentrate. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

3 - To serve, arrange Kabobs on a serving platter; discard Juice Mixture. If desired, sprinkle Nutmeg or Cinnamon over Kabobs. Serve with Dip.

Nutrition:  62 calories, 0 g total fat, 20 mg sodium, 14 6 carbs, 1 g fiber, 2 g protein

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

Lobster buying tip....

Live lobsters should be active and should curl their tails under when picked up. Frozen lobster should be completely frozen. Thaw them according to frozen fish instructions.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage with Red Bell Peppers w/ Cool Bean Salad

Dinner Tonight: Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage with Red Bell Peppers w/ Cool Bean Salad

Went out to get the morning papers and it's one cold morning out there, about 8 degrees with a wind chill at minus 3. Plenty of sunshine but the temperature didn't go up a lot today. Tomorrow being garbage day, it's always clean the fridge out of leftovers also. I got that done and on to laundry. The effort of cleaning and salting the driveway and curb yesterday paid off, as everything froze last night. Those that let theirs go have one frozen mess today. For dinner tonight I prepared a couple of new favorites, Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage with Red Bell Peppers w/ Cool Bean Salad.

Came across the Thin ‘n Trim All Natural Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage with Red Bell Peppers at Kroger last week. I had prepared one for my lunch the other day and it was so good I thought I would have them for my dinner tonight. They are pre-cooked, so all you have to do is heat them up and they’re ready to serve. I heated mine up in the microwave and served it on a Healthy Life Whole Grain Bun and topped with French’s Spicy Golden Mustard. It’s a great tasting, meaty Sausage with excellent flavor. The Red Bell Peppers with the Chicken Sausage is perfect, and so easy to prepare. They have different varieties so I’ll be trying the others also.

I had prepared a Cool Bean Salad a couple of nights ago and having the leftovers tonight. Another easily prepared item using a can of Read 3 Bean salad as the main ingredient. Makes a tasty and refreshing side dish. I left the complete recipe at the end of the post. For dessert later a Healthy Choice Dark Fudge Swirl Frozen Yogurt.

Thin ‘n Trim All Natural Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage with Red Bell Peppers

A low sodium, traditionally sweet Italian sausage flavor of anise and fennel mixed with diced red bell peppers. Great for grilling or use in various Italian dishes.

Made from Skinless Chicken Breast and Chicken Thigh Meat. Diced red
bell peppers and fennel are the accent flavors.
Skinless Chicken Meat, Red Bell Peppers, Water, Contains less than 2% of
Sea Salt, Fennel, Turbinado Sugar and Natural Flavoring

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 Link (56 g)
Servings Per Container 5
Amount Per Serving
Calories 70 Calories from Fat 25
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2.5 g 4%
Saturated Fat 0.5 g 3%
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 20 mg 7%
Sodium 250 mg 10%
Total Carbohydrate 1 g 1%
Dietary Fiber 0 g 0%
Sugars 1 g
Protein 12 g

Cool Bean Salad

1 can(s) 15 oz can of Read 3 Bean Salad (drained)Read 3 Bean 2
1 c chopped small Red Pepper
1 c chopped small Red Onion
1/2 c White Vinegar
1/3 c Sugar or use Splenda
1/4 tsp ground Black Pepper
Chopped Parsley

1. Heat together vinegar, sugar & onions. Cool and then add the oil.
2. After cooled pour over the rest of the ingredients then add black pepper and parsley.
3. Chill for several hours or overnight and serve.

One of America's Favorites - Caesar Salad

A Caesar salad

A Caesar salad is a salad of romaine lettuce and croutons dressed with Parmesan cheese, lemon juice, olive oil, egg, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, and black pepper. It is often prepared table side.

The salad's creation is generally attributed to restaurateur Caesar Cardini, an Italian immigrant who operated restaurants in Mexico and the United States. Cardini was living in San Diego but also working in Tijuana where he avoided the restrictions of Prohibition. His daughter Rosa (1928–2003) recounted that her father invented the dish when a Fourth of July 1924 rush depleted the kitchen's supplies. Cardini made do with what he had, adding the dramatic flair of the table-side tossing "by the chef." A number of Cardini's staff have said that they invented the dish.

Julia Child said that she had eaten a Caesar salad at Cardini's restaurant when she was a child in the 1920s. The earliest contemporary documentation of Caesar Salad is from a 1946 Lawry's The Prime Rib (Los Angeles, California) restaurant menu, twenty-two years after the 1924 origin attributed to the Cardinis.

A simple Caesar salad

The original Caesar salad recipe (unlike his brother Alex's Aviator's salad) did not contain pieces of anchovy; the slight anchovy flavor comes from the Worcestershire sauce. Cardini was opposed to using anchovies in his salad.

In the 1970s, Cardini's daughter said that the original recipe included whole lettuce leaves, which were meant to be lifted by the stem and eaten with the fingers; coddled eggs; and Italian olive oil.

Bottled Caesar dressings are now produced and marketed by many companies.

The trademark brands, "Cardini's", "Caesar Cardini's" and "The Original Caesar Dressing" are all claimed to date to February 1950, though they were only registered decades later, and more than a dozen varieties of bottled Cardini's dressing are available today. Some recipes include mustard, avocado, tomato, bacon bits, garlic cloves or anchovies. Cardini's Brand original Caesar dressing is somewhat different from Rosa's version.

Many variations of the salad exist; for example, by topping a Caesar salad with grilled chicken, steak, or seafood. Certain Mexican restaurants may improvise on items such as substituting tortilla strips for croutons or Cotija cheese for the Parmesan.

Common ingredients in many recipes:

* romaine or cos lettuce
* olive or vegetable oil
* fresh crushed garlic
* salt to taste
Common Caesar salad variation shown here topped with grilled chicken
* fresh-ground black pepper
* lemon or lime juice - fresh squeezed
* Worcestershire sauce
* raw or coddled egg yolks
* freshly grated Parmesan cheese
* freshly prepared croutons

There are limitless variations. However, some of the more common are:

* other varieties of lettuce
* grilled poultry (most often chicken), meat, shellfish, or fish
* capers
* Romano cheese
* anchovies
* bacon

There is inherent risk of infection by salmonella bacteria occasionally found in raw egg from cracked or improperly washed eggshells. This is a concern with many similar dressings that are emulsified with eggs, though generally the pH level is thought to be acidic enough to kill those bacteria. Nevertheless, later versions of the recipe call at least for briefly cooked coddled eggs or pasteurized eggs. Recipes may omit the egg and produce a "Caesar vinaigrette". Many variations of this salad exist; yogurt is sometimes substituted for the eggs to maintain a creamy texture and others call for using mayonnaise, oil and vinegar.

A Caesar salad
A simple Caesar salad
One of the most common Caesar salad variations, shown here topped with grilled chicken

"Meatless Monday's" Recipe of the Week - Dukkah

This week's "Meatless Monday's" Recipe of the Week is Dukkah. Dukkah is an Egyptian spice mixture. It's from the PBS website, which has a fantastic variety of recipes.


Dukkah is an Egyptian spice mixture.

8 pistachios, shelled
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
2 teaspoons black peppercorns
2 teaspoons coriander seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/2 teaspoon dried mint leaves
1 teaspoon sea salt

* Add the pistachios to a mortar and pestle and set aside. (Alternatively, you could do this in a food processor or electric spice grinder.)
* To a small skillet, set over medium heat, pour in the sesame seeds and moving the pan continuously, toast until lightly golden brown, about 30 seconds. Transfer to a mortar and pestle and repeat the toasting process with the black peppercorns, coriander seeds, cumin seeds and fennel seeds. Add the dried mint leaves to the mortar and pestle; mash and twist and mash and twist again until the spice mixture is all ground up.
* Take a closer look throughout the spice mixture and be sure to mash up any peppercorns or seeds that are still whole (there will most likely be a few). Transfer to an air-tight container. Dukkah goes well on everything from hummus to scrambled eggs to avocado toast—its applications are truly endless!

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

Thank you to Henry for passing this Fish tip along!...

Frozen fish should be solidly frozen. Avoid fish with white, dehydrated areas — this is a sign of freezer burn. Examine the package for ice crystals that may form around the inside of the package or be concentrated in one area of the package. Both of these indicate a moisture loss from the fish flesh, and this is most likely the result of thawing and refreezing.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Ground Pork Burger w/ Baked Fries

Dinner Tonight: Ground Pork Burger w/ Baked Fries

A break from the snow today and not real cold today. But it looks as though we are in for a week of cold weather, below zero a few mornings and below freezing all week. Did a few chores indoor and then outside clearing the driveway, again! Got most of slush and snow off and salted it . I wanted to get all I could off before the big freeze tomorrow. After that settled in for a day of NASCAR and College Basketball. For dinner tonight it's a Ground Pork Burger w/ Baked Fries.

I bought a 1 lb. package of Kroger Ground Pork at Kroger the other day and made 5 Pork Burgers out of it, freezing 4 of them and having one for my dinner tonight. I seasoned it McCormick Grinder Sea salt and Black Peppercorn. Then pan fried it in a small skillet in Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 4 1/2 minutes per side. Served it on a Healthy Life Whole Grain Bun and topped it with a slice of Simple Truth Muenster Cheese. The Ground Pork is always so moist and flavorful, again Kroger has some of the best Pork Products around. I also baked some Ore Ida Steak Fries, served with a side of Hunt's Ketchup. For dessert later a Del Monte No Sugar Added Peach Chunk Cup.

Ore Ida Steak Fries

Big meals, meet your match.
Thick and flavorful, but still crispy and fluffy. With their home-style russet potato

FAT 3 g
SODIUM 290 mg
CARBS 19 g

Maize Dishes - Grits


Grits refers to a ground-corn food of Native American origin that is common in the Southern United States and eaten mainly at breakfast. Modern grits are commonly made of alkali-treated corn known as hominy.

Grits are similar to other thick maize-based porridges from around the world such as polenta. "Instant grits" have been processed to speed cooking.

The word "grits" derives from the Old English word "grytt," meaning coarse meal. This word originally referred to wheat and other porridges now known as groats in parts of the UK. Maize, unknown in Europe in the Middle Ages, is a food derived from corn. (In U.S. English, corn is a specific New World plant; however, "corn" is used generically to describe cereal grains in the U.K. and in many European regions.) "Grits" may be either singular or plural. Historically, in the American South the word was invariably singular notwithstanding its plural form (cf. food names such as "spaghetti" or "linguine", also plural in form).

Grits with cheese, bacon, green onion and poached egg

Grits have their origin in Native American corn preparation. Traditionally, the hominy for grits was ground on a stone mill. The ground hominy is then passed through screens, the finer sifted material used as grit meal, and the coarser as grits. Many American communities used a gristmill until the mid-twentieth century, farmers bringing their corn to be ground, and the miller keeping a portion as his fee. State law in South Carolina, requires grits and corn meal to be enriched, similar to the requirement for flour, unless the grits are made from the corn a miller kept as his fee.

Three-quarters of grits sold in the U.S. are bought in the South, in an area stretching from Texas to Virginia that is sometimes called the "grits belt". The state of Georgia declared grits its official prepared food in 2002. Similar bills have been introduced in South Carolina, with one declaring:

Whereas, throughout its history, the South has relished its grits, making them a symbol of its diet, its customs, its humor, and its hospitality, and whereas, every community in the State of South Carolina used to be the site of a grits mill and every local economy in the State used to be dependent on its product; and whereas, grits has been a part of the life of every South Carolinian of whatever race, background, gender, and income; and whereas, grits could very well play a vital role in the future of not only this State, but also the world, if as Charleston's The Post and Courier proclaimed in 1952, "An inexpensive, simple, and thoroughly digestible food, grits should be made popular throughout the world. Given enough of it, the inhabitants of planet Earth would have nothing to fight about. A man full of grits is a man of peace."

In the South Carolina Low Country, the uncooked ground corn is known as "grist", and the cooked dish is "hominy". This is distinct from the usual use of the term hominy.

Grits are either yellow or white, depending on the color of corn. The most common version in supermarkets is "quick" grits, which have the germ and hull removed. Whole kernel grits are sometimes called "Speckled". Grits are prepared by boiling the ground kernels into a porridge until enough water has been absorbed or vaporized to leave it semi-solid.

Whole kernel grits are prepared by adding five or six parts boiling water (seasoned with salt - 1/4 tsp for each cup of water) to one part grits and cooking for 20 to 30 minutes. Grits expand when cooked and need periodic stirring to prevent sticking and lumps forming. Grits are most typically served seasoned with salt and pepper, as well as generous amounts of butter. On occasion they are served with grated cheese, sausage, bacon, or red-eye gravy. Grits may also be seasoned with butter and sugar, and a small amount of salt, giving them a salty-sweet flavor similar to kettlecorn.

Prepared grits

Although usually eaten with eggs and bacon, grits may also accompany fried catfish or salmon croquettes.

Shrimp and grits is a traditional dish in the Low Country of coastal Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Louisiana, South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia and Virginia. It is a traditional breakfast dish.

"Charleston-style grits" are boiled in milk instead of water, giving them a creamy consistency.

Solidified cooked grits may be sliced and fried directly in vegetable oil, butter, or bacon grease, or they may first be breaded in beaten egg and bread crumbs.