Like most people, I love the movies, love going to the movies, love watching movies at home and, yes, you could say I am enamored by the movies. This is why I especially love Oscar night as the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences hosts the most spectacular event of the year. The gowns, the makeup, the handsome actors in tuxedos, the beauty of everyone in the room!
But as many Americans feel these days, I feel the award shows have lost their luster due to the tumultuous political climate we live in today. I don’t begrudge anyone sharing their thoughts and views on any subject. Our first amendment gives us that right. However, I do believe there is a time and place to express political views, hold protests, etc. If I want to engage in any of those activities, I can do so at my choosing. Not during an award show or sports event.
The Oscars (and any award show for that matter) used to be entertaining, providing a little escape from reality where we could just enjoy a bit of Hollywood ambiance. Quite frankly, much as when I watch a movie, I simply want to enjoy the show and be entertained. Isn’t that the point?
So tonight I will enjoy this wonderful Bacon-Wrapped Filet Mignon! I’ll steam my asparagus and will make a loaded baked potato. For dessert, I think I’ll have a piece of Chocolate Kahlua Swiss Roll which I’ll pull from the freezer.
I’ll sit down to enjoy my meal and hopefully will enjoy watching the Oscars, as well. Of course, if the monologue and speeches get completely out of hand, I can always turn the channel. It’s my choice! It’s great to be an American!
Mix all Compound Butter ingredients in a bowl then spoon onto a parchment paper or plastic wrap. Roll into a log of about 2 inches diameter and chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
Preheat your grill at maximum temperature. Season the steaks on both sides with the coarse sea salt, freshly cracked black pepper
and dried onion flakes; Wrap 1 or 2 slices of bacon around each steaks and tie them securely using butcher string.
Grill the steaks over high heat for 4 to 6 minutes per side with the lid closed; Flip the steaks of a quarter turn for the bacon to face the grate and grill for 15 seconds per side or until the bacon is brown and lightly crisp.
Use an instant read thermometer toward the end of cooking to achieve desired doneness: 120°F for rare, 130°F for medium rare; Remove steaks from the grill.
Cut four slices of compound butter of ⅛ to ¼ inch thick and placed them on each steak. Let the butter melt over the steaks for 8 to 10 minutes before serving. Enjoy.
As much as we want warm weather to be here for good, I suspect we have a few more days of cold temperatures. At least for the evenings, with it being warmer during the days. That’s what we’re looking at in the Atlanta area for the coming days.
Which makes it an opportune time to make this wonderful beef stew. I mean it is really good. I could eat it everyday for weeks, and well, being single, I think I did! The flavor is just really good. And instead of stew meat, I purchased a rump roast that was on sale (cost less than the stew meat) and cut it up into chunks. It was the tenderest meat which I think also added to the overall deliciousness of this stew. A definite “winner, winner, best beef stew dinner”!!
2 pounds beef rump roast, (cut into bite-sized pieces)
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp pepper
1 medium red onion, finely chopped
2 celery ribs, sliced
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
6oz can tomato paste
32oz beef broth
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 cups baby carrots carrots
4-5 small red potatoes,cut into bite-sized pieces (about 3 cups)
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon oregano
1 cups frozen peas
1 cup frozen corn
¼ cup flour
¼ cup water
Combine beef, celery, carrots, red onion, potatoes, salt, pepper, garlic, parsley, oregano, Worcestershire sauce, beef broth, and tomato paste in the crock pot. I used a 6 qt crockpot for this stew. Cook on LOW for 10 hours or on HIGH for 6-7 hours.
About 30 minutes before serving, mix the flour and the water together in a small dish and pour into the crockpot. Mix until well combines. This will add a nice thickness to the stew. Next add in your frozen peas and corn. Continue cooking covered for 30 minutes.
I recently posted the fact that I don’t cook many soups mainly because I don’t have that much experience with them. Growing up in Florida, we just didn’t have a lot of soup during the winter. Mom would make chili, beef stew, white bean navy soup and such which were all delicious. Our winters were short and not nearly as cold as winters I’ve experienced since moving to Georgia! But I digress. The point I’m trying to make is that I do tend to incorporate homemade soup much more frequently here in Georgia than I ever thought of doing in Florida. I am learning!
This recipe I found on Epicurious. It is actually from Bon Appetit and I’ve adapted it a bit from that recipe. It’s great, hearty (there is that word again), delicious and quick. And I love the smoky flavor from the Chorizo. Really appetizing. You’ll love it too! Add a chunk of homemade fresh bread and you’re all set!
Hint: If you plan to not have leftovers make as is. If you plan on leftovers, I would add the spinach as you go. It will be fresher!
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add sausage and cook, turning occasionally, until browned and cooked through, 15-20 minutes. Transfer sausage to a plate.
Reduce heat to medium. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in same skillet. Add onion, garlic, and thyme sprig. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is softened, 5-8 minutes. Add beans and broth and cook, until slightly thickened, 8-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add spinach by handfuls and cook just until wilted, about 2 minutes.
Slice chorizo and fold into soup. Divide soup among bowls. Enjoy
Serving size: 1 cup Calories: 570 Fat: 33g Fiber: 11g
Aw, I can’t think of anything more comforting on a cold winter’s night than this wonderful dish, Shepherd’s Pie, for dinner. The flavor is robust and the meal is hot and hearty. Can’t beat that combination when its freezing outside. Add a fire in the fireplace and a few after dinner hot toddy’s and I call that evening a great success!
The recipe below was adapted from Alton Brown’s recipe. His called for lamb which you can definitely use. I prefer ground beef.
I also like the individual soufflé cups instead of one large dish but if you were serving a family, the large dish would be better. For me, the soufflé cups help a bit with portion control and Lord knows, we all could use a bit of help there! 🙂
Try making this tonight! It will satisfy your entire family and you, too!
Peel the potatoes and cut into ½-inch dice. Place in a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Set over high heat, cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, uncover, decrease the heat to maintain a simmer and cook until tender and easily crushed with tongs, approximately 10 to 15 minutes. Place the half-and-half and butter into a microwave-safe container and heat in the microwave until warmed through, about 35 seconds. Drain the potatoes in a colander and then return to the saucepan. Mash the potatoes and then add the half and half, butter, salt and pepper and continue to mash until smooth. Stir in the yolk until well combined.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
While the potatoes are cooking, prepare the filling. Place the canola oil into a 12-inch saute pan and set over medium high heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the onion and carrots and saute just until they begin to take on color, approximately 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and stir to combine. Add the ground beef, salt and pepper and cook until browned and cooked through, approximately 3 minutes. Sprinkle the meat with the flour and toss to coat, continuing to cook for another minute. Add the tomato paste, chicken broth, Worcestershire, rosemary, thyme, and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer slowly 10 to 12 minutes or until the sauce is thickened slightly.
Add the corn and peas to the meat mixture and spread evenly into 8 individual souffle cups. Top with the mashed potatoes, starting around the edges to create a seal to prevent the mixture from bubbling up and smooth with a rubber spatula. Place on a parchment lined half sheet pan on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 25 minutes or just until the potatoes begin to brown. Remove to a cooling rack for at least 15 minutes before serving.
I named this blog post and recipe, Low Country Boil Packets but in reality it should be Low Country Foil Packets because, well, these are cooked in foil packets on the grill. Yes, on the grill. No need to pull out the outdoor cooker and make a ton of food if you don’t need to although that’s always fun to do if you are having quite a few guests for dinner. But if not, this is definitely a great alternative.
And what a perfect thing for single people or those cooking for two! It’s just perfect. Just use the amount of ingredients you need for the foil packets and save the remaining ingredients for another day. Or invite a couple of friends over to enjoy dinner with you!
I put the shrimp in frozen but everything else is fresh and thinly sliced, as you can see in the photo. It all cooks and the flavors meld so nicely in the foil packet! You can add more spice if you want or less if that suits you better. It’s very easy to individualize each packet for the person.
Just a perfect meal anytime of year but especially during the summer months. It’s quick and easy and fool proof. Try it and let me know what you think!
Cut 4 sheets of foil about 12 inches long. Divide shrimp, garlic, sausage, corn, and potatoes evenly over the foil sheets. Drizzle with olive oil. Add the Old Bay seasoning and season to taste with salt and pepper. Toss gently to combine. Top each mixture with parsley, lemon and a tablespoon of butter each.
Fold the foil packets crosswise over the shrimp boil mixture to completely cover the food. Roll the top and bottom edges to seal them closed.
Place foil packets on the grill and cook until just cooked through, about 10-15 minutes.
I’ve made this recipe before and honestly couldn’t figure out how to display the finished product to give my readers a reality of the finished product. So, I just came up with this shot. It’s not the prettiest thing but it does show the end result.
This “go to” recipe is perfect for whole chickens, as the recipe dictates. When cooking time is complete, you simply pull the meat off the bone and you have all this wonderful white and dark chicken meat to do whatever you want with!
I use it for tacos, quesadillas, chicken salad, barbecue chicken sandwiches, or any kind of chicken pasta dish you might want to try. It’s perfect for any of those dishes.
Or simply serve over salad greens or as a main course with steamed vegetables! The possibilities are endless!
It’s funny, I’ve had my Crock Pot for many, many years now and I love using it and do so almost weekly. Its typically a weekend when I’ll load it up with my favorite ingredients and then I’ll head out to do some photography. Love coming home to a house filled with the aromas of that night’s dinner which is perfect because I’m usually too tired to stand in the kitchen to cook!
Try this recipe one work day or weekend and see how you like it.
Growing up in Panama City my family would go to a Mexican restaurant to eat dinner every Thursday night way out in Callaway. Well, at the time it was way out. The restaurant’s name? Sombrero Mexican Food Restaurant! And it’s still there on Tyndall Parkway. My, how I loved going there. Oddly, I didn’t have a love for Mexican food at the time. Again, I was a child, a tween, at best. I remember ordering the kid’s fried chicken or the kid’s spaghetti. Yes, indeed, I did. I think I finally progressed to a taco. Imagine that! I never looked back!
We’d love having dinner and then we’d visit the many goats living on property behind the restaurant. Funny goats of all shapes and sizes that would climb up on makeshift log bridges and knock each other off. Quite comical! It, too, is still there. If you’re in the area, you should stop by.
If you happen to visit, rest assured I have no idea how the food is today. I just read some terrible reviews on Google from a few years back. It is a family owned restaurant that has been there for 50+ years. More recent reviews are favorable.
You would never know my love for Mexican food started out like that as I absolutely LOVE it today. Did I say I love Mexican food? I do and I love cooking it at home. It is usually inexpensive, fast, and very filling. And I usually have leftovers for days on end. Which I also adore. And in today’s economy, stretching our grocery dollars is what it’s all about plus you save time in the kitchen. I also like the idea of not slaving in the kitchen every night, even though cooking is one of my passions.
These days I am cooking less, simply due to economics. Peanut butter and jelly are my friend! But when I do cook, it’s usually something that I can use for meals for days on end. When you’re single, you get used to this sort of eating, trust me. And to stretch things even further, I freeze ALOT!
So for the weekend, I decided to make Barbecue Pork Sandwiches! And as a side, the ever popular and delicious Champagne Cole Slaw. A perfect compliment to the spicy barbecue pork sandwiches. Your mouth will appreciate the coolness of the slaw flavors!
To start, I used my Crock Pot Beer Chicken recipe using two pork tenderloins instead of the chicken. I love both but for some reason I wanted shredded pork for my sandwiches. And the beauty of this recipe is you start it in the morning and you can have dinner ready in minutes that evening.
When I was a kid, my family would take our boat on the weekends to Shell Island (in Panama City, Florida) and often times if Mama and Daddy didn’t want to grill, we’d swing by a wonderful barbecue restaurant (at the time) called Old South Barbecue, located on Highway 98 in St. Andrews. It’s no longer there, of course, but back in the day it was a mainstay. Funny, I don’t remember ever going there to eat “inside” and quite frankly I don’t even know if they had a dining room. I do remember we’d pick up chopped pork and barbecue sauce “to go” that we’d use to make sandwiches later at the island. Mom would have the buns and we’d have chips or slaw or something else for a side. The pork sandwiches were the star of the lunch though so everything else is a very vague memory! But, oh those sandwiches. The best in all the land!
I guess I was feeling a bit melancholy when I decided to make my version. I did shred my pork instead of chopping it but the end result is the same – most delicious and if I say so myself, the best in all the land! And I have leftovers for days so no need to worry about dinner for some time now! Oh, I can’t forget the Barbecue sauce! This recipe is so good I could probably take a straw and drink it straight from the pan! The combination of the pork, flavored perfectly and the barbecue sauce which kicks everything up a notch is just perfect!
One day I came across this recipe and decided to give it a try. With beer being one of the key ingredients, I figure it had to be good, right? And it is! It’s also low fat and low calorie and did I mention good? And oh so easy!
I usually make it for dinner one night and then make Chicken Salad out of the rest or even Barbeque Chicken Sliders. It’s great either way. Watch for both of those recipes shortly! They’re a coming!
What is an Animal Style Burger you ask? If you’ve ever been to an In-N-Out burger joint (locations in Arizona, California, Nevada, Oregon, Texas, and Utah) you’ve likely had one. If you haven’t, it’s possible you’ve heard of it, as I have.
This recipe came across my Facebook newsfeed one day and I immediately said “I must make that” and I did. I wanted to find out for myself what the fuss was all about. And I did. Honestly, the ingredients to this burger are all basic ingredients usually or sometimes added to burgers. I think it’s the sauce that makes the difference and the way the burger is cooked (can’t beat that mustard crust) and then there is the assembly.
It seems backwards to me as I’m used to having the lettuce and tomato layered on top of the beef patties. Their way, you layer those items on the bottom. In the end, it doesn’t really matter as it all winds up in the same place, right?
But there is something truly different and wonderful about this burger. Not something you want to have all the time but definitely a treat when you have dinner guests and burgers are warranted. This recipe will set your burgers apart from the one’s next door, for sure.
cooked frozen french fries, for serving (optional)
Heat 2 tbsp. of vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until caramelized, about 20 minutes. If the onions are browning too quickly, turn down the heat and add a splash of water. Set aside onions and wipe the skillet clean.
Meanwhile, make the special sauce. Mix together mayonnaise, ketchup, relish, sugar and vinegar in a small bowl. Season to taste and set aside.
Heat the remaining vegetable oil in the pan over medium-high heat. Season both sides of the hamburger patties with salt and pepper before adding them to the pan. Cook for about 2-3 minutes, until the bottoms have developed a nice seared crust. Spread about ½ tsp of yellow mustard on the top (uncooked) side of each patty before flipping. Flip the patties and cook for another minute. Add the cheese slices on top of each patty and cook until the cheese melts.
Top each bottom bun with a heaping tablespoon of the sauce, a tomato slice, pickles and a piece of lettuce. Add a cooked patty to each bun and top each with caramelized onions. Top the onions with another patty each, then top with top bun. Serve with fries (garnished with extra sauce and onions).