My Go-to Cucumber Salad

I LOVE Cucumbers! LOVE LOVE LOVE!

I love Cucumber salad! I could eat cucumbers EVERY day of my life! I really could! They never get old to me!

So whenever I make cucumber salad this recipe is the one I think of:

On the blog post where I got the recipe the original name for it is called “Kelsie’s awesome cucumber salad

So you will need:

The original recipe is a larger batch, I adjusted the recipe a little to make it my own
3- 4 large cucumbers, peeled and sliced thick, or thin (I did them thick)


2 medium tomatoes, chopped
1/2 medium red onion, diced

For the Dressing:

In a small bowl whisk together all the dressing ingredients.


1/2 cup cider vinegar


4 Tablespoons canola oil


2-3 Tbsp honey, (If you want it to taste sweeter, add more honey)


1 tsp celery salt


1 tsp dried basil


1 tsp ground mustard


1 tsp garlic powder


salt (to taste)


1/2 tsp dried oregano


few dashes of cayenne pepper

Now for the salad:

Place the cucumbers in a large bowl

 

Then add the onion

then the tomatoes

then pour the dressing you made over the cucumbers, onion, and tomatoes

Toss everything together

I feel like the longer the cucumbers sit in the dressing, the better it is. I’ve even let it sit overnight and tossed it a few times and it kind of pickled the cucumbers and the flavors were amazing! I’ve tried it right after I made it, without letting it sit and it’s still good, but I think it’s even better if it sits longer.

So if you are in a hurry, then mix everything together and eat it. If you have an hour, then let the salad chill in the fridge for an hour or 30 minutes. If you can let it sit overnight, I recommend letting it sit.

Recipe:
3- 4 large cucumbers, peeled and sliced thick, or thin (I did them thick)
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
1/2 medium red onion, diced

For the Dressing:
In a small bowl whisk together all the dressing ingredients.
1/2 cup cider vinegar
4 Tablespoons canola oil
2-3 Tbsp honey, (If you want it to taste sweeter, add more honey)
1 tsp celery salt
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp ground mustard
1 tsp garlic powder
salt (to taste)
1/2 tsp dried oregano
few dashes of cayenne pepper

Now for the salad:
Place the cucumbers in a large bowl
Then add the onion
then the tomatoes
then pour the dressing you made over the cucumbers, onion, and tomatoes

Toss everything together

I feel like the longer the cucumbers sit in the dressing, the better it is. I’ve even let it sit overnight and tossed it a few times and it kind of pickled the cucumbers and the flavors were amazing! I’ve tried it right after I made it, without letting it sit and it’s still good, but I think it’s even better if it sits longer.

Easy French Bread Pizza

Found the inspiration for this recipe from http://www.twopeasandtheirpod.com

1 loaf French Bread
Pizza sauce, homemade
freshly Shredded Mozzarella cheese

favorite pizza toppings
They suggested sausage,
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caramelized onions, roasted red peppers
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Preheat oven to 400 degrees
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Cook Sausage
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and Caramelized onions
I used this recipe for the caramelized onions:
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I made my own Pizza Sauce as well

Grab a sauce pan and coated the bottom with a little vegetable oil
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added 2-3 cloves of minced garlic
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I added in
1 15 oz can of tomato sauce
1 8 oz can of tomato sauce
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1 6 oz can tomato paste
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1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
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Garlic salt, to taste
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Freeze dried basil, to taste
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Freeze dried Parsley, to taste
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dried Oregano, to taste
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Stir everything together
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Season with Salt & Pepper, To taste
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Then add in 1 Tbsp brown Sugar
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Stir everything together and turn to medium low and let simmer until you need the sauce
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Slice French bread loaf in half lengthwise and then each half in half and place on baking sheet.
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spread the pizza sauce over the bread evenly.
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Then add roasted bell peppers
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Then add the Caramelized onions
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Then add shredded cheese
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Then add sausage
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Bake for 10-12 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and melted
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You can cut the slices in half again or leave whole and Serve up nice and hot
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Recipe

  • 1 loaf French Bread
  • Pizza sauce, homemade
  • freshly Shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • favorite pizza toppings-
  • They suggested sausage,
  • caramelized onions, roasted red peppers
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Cook Sausage
  • and Caramelized onions
  • I made my own Pizza Sauce as well
  • Grab a sauce pan and coated the bottom with a little vegetable oil
  • added 2-3 cloves of minced garlic
  • I added in
  • 1 15 oz can of tomato sauce
  • 1 8 oz can of tomato sauce
  • 1 6 oz can tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • Garlic salt, to taste
  • Freeze dried basil, to taste
  • Freeze dried Parsley, to taste
  • Oregano, to taste
  • Stir everything together
  • Season with Salt & Pepper, To taste
  • Then add in 1 Tbsp brown Sugar
  • Stir everything together and turn to medium low and let simmer until you need the sauce
  • Slice French bread loaf in half lengthwise and then each half in half and place on baking sheet.
  • spread the pizza sauce over the bread evenly.
  • Then add roasted bell peppers
  • Then add the Caramelized onions
  • Then add shredded cheese
  • Then add sausage
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and melted
  • You can cut the slices in half again or leave whole and Serve up nice and hot

Oven-Fried Chicken Drumsticks

Recipe

6 chicken drumsticks
2 eggs
2 tablespoons water
4 tablespoons butter
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
olive oil
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Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.

While the oven is preheating grab a medium-sized bowl/dish and whisk together the eggs
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and water
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In another medium-sized bowl/dish combine the breadcrumbs,
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cheese,
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salt, smoked paprika,
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garlic powder,
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onion powder,
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oregano,
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basil
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and the freshly ground pepper
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Grab your cast iron skillet and place the butter in the skillet
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and place it in the preheated oven to melt

Dip the drumsticks in the egg mixture
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Then dip the drumsticks into the breadcrumbs
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pressing the breadcrumbs and seasonings coating each piece firmly and getting a nice good coating
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once the butter is melted in the pan, pull it out of the oven
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and after coating each drumstick, place them into the pan with the melted butter,
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then drizzle a little olive oil over each drumstick
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Bake the chicken for 30 minutes then flip the drumsticks and bake for another 15 minutes
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cool for 5-10 minutes and then serve

Recipe

  • 6 chicken drumsticks
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • olive oil
  • Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.
  • While the oven is preheating grab a medium-sized bowl/dish and whisk together the eggs and water
  • In another medium-sized bowl/dish combine the breadcrumbs, cheese, salt, smoked paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, basil and the freshly ground pepper
  • Grab your cast iron skillet and place the butter in the skillet
  • and place it in the preheated oven to melt
  • Dip the drumsticks in the egg mixture
  • Then dip the drumsticks into the breadcrumbs pressing the breadcrumbs and seasonings coating each piece firmly and getting a nice good coating once the butter is melted in the pan, pull it out of the oven and after coating each drumstick, place them into the pan with the melted butter, then drizzle a little olive oil over each drumstick.
  • Bake the chicken for 30 minutes then flip the drumsticks and bake for another 15 minutes cool for 5-10 minutes and then serve

Homemade Ranch Dressing and Stacey’s Birthday Dinner

So back in August (yes I know I am so far behind on my postings) I wanted to make my good, great, awesome friend Stacey dinner for her birthday. So I emailed her and asked her what she wanted for her dinner…Stacey is a busy lady and she lives 90 miles from me so we don’t get to see each other often and I have never cooked her a Jamie meal, so I wanted to cook her and her hubby and kids a nice meal of things she liked. So I asked her and this is what she requested: fried catfish, with hush puppies, watermelon and salad with REAL ranch dressing, not the bottled stuff or packet stuff…OK you got it…

So I decided on The pioneer woman’s ranch dressing because I LOVE the Pioneer woman

I doubled this recipe as I LOVE ranch and I was cooking for 7 of us and I wanted leftover ranch for a salad for myself for the next couple of nights with dinner. Because (again) I LOVE ranch).

3 cloves of Garlic, minced
Salt, To Taste
1/4 cup Italian Flat-leaf Parsley, chopped
2 Tablespoons Fresh Chives, minced
1 cup (Real) Mayonnaise
1/2 cup Sour Cream
Buttermilk (as Needed To Desired Consistency)
White Vinegar (about 2 tablespoons)
Worcestershire Sauce, (few dashes)
Fresh Dill (I did about 1/3 a cup)
Cayenne Pepper (I did a teaspoon)
Paprika (I did a teaspoon)
dried Oregano (I did a teaspoon)
Tabasco (5-6 dashes)
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Mince the garlic
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then sprinkle about an 1/8 to ¼ teaspoon of salt on it
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and mash it into a paste with a fork.
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Then Chop the parsley,
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chives
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Dill, finely
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and set aside

In a bowl combine the Mayonnaise
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Sour cream
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and buttermilk
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Vinegar (I added in 2 tablespoons)
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few dashes of Worcestershire Sauce
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a teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper (Stacey likes things spicy, so I kept that in mind)
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Paprika (about 1 teaspoon)
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Dried Oregano (about 1 teaspoon)
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5-6 dashes of Tabasco
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I also added in about a teaspoon of garlic salt
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(and of course) I also added in about a teaspoon of creole seasoning
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I also added in about 1/4 a teaspoon of salt
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Mix everything together with a whisk and mix really well.

I tasted mine several times for flavoring
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then I added in the garlic I smashed up earlier and all the fresh herbs as well
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I decided to bust out my electric hand blender to make sure all the herbs were nice and chopped up finely, I didn’t want someone to get a big chunk of dill or parsley
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I blended the dressing really well
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then tasted it for seasonings again, add in more of what it was missing, if it’s not missing anything, then leave it as is! Mine was perfect!
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Looks like ranch dressing!
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I LOVE ranch dressing!
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I added mine to a bottle, to make it easier for pouring
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These are the 4 extra seasonings that I ended up adding in on my own, about a teaspoon of each
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I let the dressing chill most of the day, while I cooked everything else, tasting it to make sure I got the seasoning right!

I also made Stacey a brownie cake. She LOVES Brownies, Pecans and Caramel. So I made her a turtle brownie cake
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I wanted this cake to be pretty amazing, just like my friend!
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I also made homemade bacon bits for the salad as well with REAL bacon!
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Watermelon
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The Birthday girl
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I had Stacey’s son Blaise sample the ranch dressing to make sure it was ok…he approved!
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Hush puppies
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cards the kiddies made their momma!
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mmmmmm salad with homemade ranch dressing…the BEST!
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catfish
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Happy Birthday Dear Friend!
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Recipe

  • 3 cloves of Garlic, minced
  • Salt, To Taste
  • 1/4 cup Italian Flat-leaf Parsley, chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons Fresh Chives, minced
  • 1 cup (Real) Mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup Sour Cream
  • Buttermilk (as Needed To Desired Consistency)
  • White Vinegar (about 2 tablespoons)
  • Worcestershire Sauce, (few dashes)
  • Fresh Dill (I did about 1/3 a cup)
  • Cayenne Pepper (I did a teaspoon)
  • Paprika (I did a teaspoon)
  • Fresh Oregano (I did a teaspoon)
  • Tabasco (5-6 dashes)
  • Mince the garlic
  • then sprinkle about an 1/8 to ¼ teaspoon of salt on it
  • and mash it into a paste with a fork.
  • Then Chop the parsley, chives Dill, finely
  • and set aside
  • In a bowl combine the Mayonnaise, Sour cream and buttermilk
  • Vinegar (I added in 2 tablespoons)
  • few dashes of Worcestershire Sauce
  • a teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper (Stacey likes things spicy, so I kept that in mind)
  • Paprika (about 1 teaspoon)
  • Dried Oregano (about 1 teaspoon)
  • 5-6 dashes of Tabasco
  • I also added in about a teaspoon of garlic salt
  • (and of course) I also added in about a teaspoon of creole seasoning
  • Mix everything together with a whisk and mix really well.
  • I tasted mine several times for flavoring
  • then I added in the garlic I smashed up earlier and all the fresh herbs as well
  • I decided to bust out my electric hand blender to make sure all the herbs were nice and chopped up finely, I didn’t want someone to get a big chunk of dill or parsley
  • I blended the dressing really well
  • then tasted it for seasonings again, add in more of what it was missing, if it’s not missing anything, then leave it as is! Mine was perfect!
  • I let the dressing chill most of the day, while I cooked everything else, tasting it to make sure I got the seasoning right!

Pork Carnitas

Original recipe makes 12 servings

1/4 cup vegetable oil
4 pounds pork shoulder, cut into a few large pieces
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3 tablespoons kosher salt
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
3 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp chili powder
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp ground cumin
The original recipe calls for- 4 (14.5 ounce) cans chicken broth, I just used better than Bouillon.
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Preheat your oven to 400 degrees

grab a large dutch oven and place it on a large burner and heat burner to high heat, and add the veggie oil to the pan.
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Season the pork with salt
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Then place the pork in the pan,
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brown on all sides, (takes about 10-12 minutes)
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Add the onion,
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garlic,
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lime juice,
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chili powder,
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oregano, and cumin.
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Pour in the water for the chicken Bouillon and then add amount of Bouillon it calls for on the jar, and bring to a boil.
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Lower the heat to medium-low, cover pot with lid, and continue to simmer until pork is very tender, about 2 1/2-3 hours.
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Transfer the pork shoulder to a large baking sheet, reserving the liquid.
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Drizzle with a small amount of the reserved cooking liquid and lightly season with salt.
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Place pork back in the oven and bake until browned, about 30 minutes. Drizzle more of the cooking liquid on the meat every 10 minutes, and then shred the meat as it browns.
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I had Normy stop at Santiago’s on his way home to get some green Chile, to go with our Carnitas. THE BEST Green chili ever!
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I served my Carnitas with flour tortillas, sour cream, cheese and homemade pico de gallo and green Chile
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Recipe

  • Original recipe makes 12 servings
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 pounds pork shoulder, cut into a few large pieces
  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 3 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • The original recipe calls for- 4 (14.5 ounce) cans chicken broth, I just used better than Bouillon.
  • Preheat your oven to 400 degrees
  • grab a large dutch oven and place it on a large burner and heat burner to high heat, and add the veggie oil to the pan.
  • Season the pork with salt
  • Then place the pork in the pan,
  • brown on all sides, (takes about 10-12 minutes)
  • Add the onion, garlic, lime juice, chili powder, oregano, and cumin.
  • Pour in the water for the chicken Bouillon and then add amount of Bouillon it calls for on the jar, and bring to a boil.
  • Lower the heat to medium-low, cover pot with lid, and continue to simmer until pork is very tender, about 2 1/2-3 hours.
  • Transfer the pork shoulder to a large baking sheet, reserving the liquid.
  • Drizzle with a small amount of the reserved cooking liquid and lightly season with salt.
  • Place pork back in the oven and bake until browned, about 30 minutes. Drizzle more of the cooking liquid on the meat every 10 minutes, and then shred the meat as it browns.
  • I served my Carnitas with flour tortillas, sour cream, cheese and homemade pico de gallo and green Chile

Chili

I just made this recipe up…wanted chili one night for dinner so just went with it and this is what I came up with…

I did use this recipe for the Chili seasoning mix
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
2 1/2 teaspoons seasoning salt
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
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In a bowl,
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stir together paprika, seasoning salt, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne, seasoned pepper, thyme and oregano.
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Whatever you don’t use, store in an airtight container.

OK now for what you will need for the chili:
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2 green bell peppers, chopped in small chunks
1 red bell pepper, chopped in small chunks
1 28 oz can, diced tomatoes
1 28 oz can, crushed tomatoes
1 15 oz can, black beans, drained
1 15 oz can, Pinto beans, drained
1 5-6 oz can, Tomato paste
1 15 oz can, tomato sauce
Garlic salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Kosher salt, to taste
Chili powder, to taste
about a pound and 1/2 lean ground beef
2-3 garlic cloves, smashed and minced
3-4 celery stalks chopped into small dice
2 jalapenos peppers (I left the seeds in for extra spiciness, you can remove them)
2 yellow chilies
1 yellow onion, chopped
chili seasoning
10-12 roasted green chilies, skin and seeds removed and chopped
(not in picture but I also used about 3 cups of water and Worcestershire sauce)

So start by chopping all your veggies: bell peppers, celery, jalapenos, yellow chilies, onion, green chilies and set aside
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Grab a deep pot and place on burner and heat burner to medium high heat and add ground beef
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Season with Salt and Pepper, to taste
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Cook beef and ground up into small chunks and brown meat
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Add a little chili seasoning to beef, to taste (I never measure so I always say, to taste because that’s what I do… to taste)
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stir beef and chili seasoning together and then add onions and stir together with beef
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then add garlic
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cook for a minute or two, until you smell the garlic and stir everything together. Then add celery
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stir
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then add a little more chili seasoning, again…to taste
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stir in with meat and veggies
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add red bell pepper
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green bell pepper
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stir everything together
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Add Jalapenos and Yellow Chile’s
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Then add green chilies
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Add Beans
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Then add, canned tomatoes and sauce
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I filled the 15 oz can of tomato sauce with water once I poured the sauce into the chili
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stir everything together
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then add a generous amount of chili powder, to taste
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then I added a few dashes of Worcestershire sauce
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then I added in a couple more cups of water
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Then added tomato paste
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stir everything together, really well, taste for seasonings and add more if needed. Or leave as is.
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let chili simmer 30-45 minutes uncovered, stirring occasionally

Then serve it up in a nice large bowl with freshly grated, extra sharp cheddar cheese
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Recipe

  • Chili seasoning mix
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons seasoning salt
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • In a bowl,
  • stir together paprika, seasoning salt, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne, seasoned pepper, thyme and oregano.
  • Whatever you don’t use, store in an airtight container.
  • OK now for what you will need for the chili:
  • 2 green bell peppers, chopped in small chunks
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped in small chunks
  • 1 28 oz can, diced tomatoes
  • 1 28 oz can, crushed tomatoes
  • 1 15 oz can, black beans, drained
  • 1 15 oz can, Pinto beans, drained
  • 1 5-6 oz can, Tomato paste
  • 1 15 oz can, tomato sauce
  • Garlic salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Chili powder, to taste
  • about a pound and 1/2 lean ground beef
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, smashed and minced
  • 3-4 celery stalks chopped into small dice
  • 2 jalapenos peppers (I left the seeds in for extra spiciness, you can remove them)
  • 2 yellow chilies
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • chili seasoning
  • 10-12 roasted green chilies, skin and seeds removed and chopped
  • (I also used about 3 cups of water and Worcestershire sauce)
  • So start by chopping all your veggies: bell peppers, celery, jalapenos, yellow chilies, onion, green chilies and set aside
  • Grab a deep pot and place on burner and heat burner to medium high heat and add ground beef
  • Season with Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • Cook beef and ground up into small chunks and brown meat
  • Add a little chili seasoning to beef, to taste (I never measure so I always say, to taste because that’s what I do… to taste)
  • stir beef and chili seasoning together and then add onions and stir together with beef
  • then add garlic
  • cook for a minute or two, until you smell the garlic and stir everything together. Then add celery, stir
  • then add a little more chili seasoning, again…to taste
  • stir in with meat and veggies
  • add red bell pepper, green bell pepper
  • stir everything together
  • Add Jalapenos and Yellow Chile’s
  • Then add green chilies, Add Beans
  • Then add, canned tomatoes and sauce
  • I filled the 15 oz can of tomato sauce with water once I poured the sauce into the chili
  • stir everything together
  • then add a generous amount of chili powder, to taste
  • then I added a few dashes of Worcestershire sauce
  • then I added in a couple more cups of water
  • Then added tomato paste
  • stir everything together, really well, taste for seasonings and add more if needed. Or leave as is.
  • let chili simmer 30-45 minutes uncovered, stirring occasionally
  • Then serve it up in a nice large bowl with freshly grated, extra sharp cheddar cheese

Taco Seasoning

Got the recipe from here

1 tbsp chili powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
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In a small bowl, mix together chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, red pepper flakes, oregano, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper.
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Recipe

  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • In a small bowl, mix together chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, red pepper flakes, oregano, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper.