French Dip Jamie Style

DSC_0035-1

you will need:

Roast beast (beef) from the deli or stuff that is pre-packaged – I used Oscar Mayer Slow Roasted Roast Beef  (depending on how much meat you want on your sandwich, and how many people you are feeding will depend on how much you will need, I like a LOT of meat so I bought two packages)

hoagie roll or sandwich bread

Butter

provolone cheese

mayonnaise (optional)

Au jus

So I started by heating a cast iron skillet to medium heat and added in about 2 tbsp of butter,
DSC_0021-1

let the butter melt completely and make sure the whole bottom of the pan is coated in butter
DSC_0022-1

While it melts cut two of the hoagie or sandwich bread in half and once the butter has melted toast the inside part of the bread
DSC_0023-1

and get it nice and toasted! (this works best with cast iron skillet) should take about 3-5 minutes each slice of bread.

Then take the bread and place it on a plate
DSC_0024-1

Buttery toasted, GOODNESS!
DSC_0026-1

Then for the Au jus I just used Better Than Bouillon Beef Base.

(Source)

I used a small sauce pan and filled it with water and added a tbsp of the better than bouillon, you can add more or less. Be careful adding too much because it can be salty, then warm on the stove and stir occasionally.

To assemble your Jamie French dip:
Take the bread you toasted and smear some may-o on both slices (I love mayo)
then add one slice of provolone cheese, I cute it in half
then add the roast beast (beef)
Normy dipped his roast beef in the au jus and then put it on his sandwich
Then top with the other half of bread and cut sandwich in half and serve with a little bowl/cup of the au jus

DSC_0031-1

DSC_0033-1

DSC_0037-1

DSC_0039-1

 

Something about the toasted bread with the butter and the may-o and cheese, and meat and au jus, it just goes really well together!

DSC_0040-1

Glazed Doughnut Muffins

I think these should be called spiced muffins…to me they do not taste like a glazed doughnut…but more like a spice muffin…

Recipe

For the Batter
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
DSC_0041-1

DSC_0043-1

1/4 teaspoon baking soda
DSC_0044-1

3/4 to 1 ¼ teaspoons ground nutmeg, to taste (I used ¾)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
DSC_0036-1

DSC_0037-1

1 cup milk
DSC_0035-1

For the Glaze
3 tablespoons butter; melted
1 cup confectioners’ sugar; sifted
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons hot water
DSC_0077-1

1) Preheat the oven to 425°F. Lightly grease a standard muffin tin. Or line with 12 paper muffin cups, and grease the cups with non-stick vegetable oil spray; this will ensure that they peel off the muffins nicely.

2) In a medium-sized mixing bowl, cream together the butter,
DSC_0046-1

vegetable oil, and sugars
DSC_0047-1

DSC_0048-1

DSC_0049-1

till smooth.

3) Add the eggs,
DSC_0052-1

DSC_0053-1

beating to combine.
DSC_0054-1

4) Stir in the baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon,
DSC_0055-1

salt, and vanilla.
DSC_0057-1

5) Stir the flour
DSC_0058-1

into the butter mixture alternately with the milk,
DSC_0059-1

beginning and ending with the flour and making sure everything is thoroughly combined.

6) Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared pan, filling the cups nearly full.
DSC_0061-1

7) Bake the muffins for 15 to 17 minutes, or until they’re a pale golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the middle of one of the center muffins comes out clean.
DSC_0083-1

8.) In a medium bowl, prepare the glaze by mixing together the melted butter,
DSC_0079-1

DSC_0080-1

confectioners’ sugar,
DSC_0078-1

vanilla
DSC_0081-1

and water. Whisk until smooth.

9.) When muffins have cooled slightly, dip the muffin crown into the glaze
DSC_0086-1

DSC_0090-1

and allow the glaze to harden.
DSC_0087-1

At this point, you can leave them as is or go for the double dip. I glazed my muffins twice.
DSC_0088-1

10.) Serve warm, or cool on a rack and wrap airtight. Muffins will keep at room temperature for about a day.
DSC_0092-1

DSC_0096-1

DSC_0097-1

DSC_0101-1

DSC_0104-1

DSC_0109-1

DSC_0111-1

DSC_0116-1

DSC_0120-1

Here is that recipe for you again:
For the Batter
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 to 1 ¼ teaspoons ground nutmeg, to taste (I used ¾)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup milk

For the Glaze
3 tablespoons butter; melted
1 cup confectioners’ sugar; sifted
3/4 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons hot water

1) Preheat the oven to 425°F. Lightly grease a standard muffin tin. Or line with 12 paper muffin cups, and grease the cups with non-stick vegetable oil spray; this will ensure that they peel off the muffins nicely.

2) In a medium-sized mixing bowl, cream together the butter, vegetable oil, and sugars till smooth.

3) Add the eggs, beating to combine.

4) Stir in the baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla.
5) Stir the flour into the butter mixture alternately with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour and making sure everything is thoroughly combined.

6) Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared pan, filling the cups nearly full.

7) Bake the muffins for 15 to 17 minutes, or until they’re a pale golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the middle of one of the center muffins comes out clean.

8.) In a medium bowl, prepare the glaze by mixing together the melted butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and water. Whisk until smooth.

9.) When muffins have cooled slightly, dip the muffin crown into the glaze and allow the glaze to harden. At this point, you can leave them as is or go for the double dip. I glazed my muffins twice.

10.) Serve warm, or cool on a rack and wrap airtight. Muffins will keep at room temperature for about a day.

Goulash

I got the inspiration for this recipe from here…But I did a few things differently to make it my own

2 pounds lean ground beef
DSC_0003-1

1 pound hot ground Italian Sausage
DSC_0006-1

DSC_0009-1

1 large onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, chopped
3 cups water
1 (29-ounce) can tomato sauce
2 (15-ounce) cans fire roasted, diced tomatoes
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
3 bay leaves
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon House Seasoning, recipe follows
1 tablespoon seasoned salt
2 cups dried elbow macaroni (I did whole grain)
House Seasoning:
1 cup salt
1/4 cup black pepper
1/4 cup garlic powder

Mix ingredients together and store in an airtight container for up to 6 months.

Mix ingredients together and store in an airtight container for up to 6 months.

DSC_0034-1

DSC_0002-1

In a Dutch oven, saute the ground beef and ground Italian sausage over medium-high heat,
DSC_0010-1

DSC_0014-1

until no pink remains. Break up meat while sauteing; spoon off any grease. (I drained mine in a colander)
DSC_0015-1
DSC_0016-1

Add the onions, and green bell pepper to the pot and saute
DSC_0017-1

until they are tender about 5 minutes.
DSC_0019-1

then add in the garlic,
DSC_0020-1

cook that for a few minutes

Add 3 cups water, along with the tomato sauce,
DSC_0021-1

DSC_0022-1

add in fire roasted tomatoes,
DSC_0023-1

DSC_0024-1

DSC_0025-1

Italian seasoning, bay leaves,
DSC_0028-1

soy sauce,
DSC_0032-1

House Seasoning, and seasoned salt. Stir well. Place a lid on the pot and allow this to cook for 20 to 25 minutes.

Add the elbow macaroni, stir well, return the lid to the pot, and simmer for about 20 minutes. Turn off the heat, remove the bay leaves and allow the mixture to sit about 30 minutes more before serving.
DSC_0038-1

DSC_0042-1

DSC_0044-1

Strawberry-Almond Cream Tart

Recipe

Crust:
36 honey graham crackers (about 9 sheets)
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons butter, melted
4 teaspoons water
Cooking spray

Filling:
2/3 cup light cream cheese (I was trying to make this healthy as I could and I used vanilla yogurt instead)
DSC_0204-1

1/4 cup sugar (again trying to be healthy, used honey for this part)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract

Topping:
6 cups small fresh strawberries, divided
DSC_0210-1

2/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons sliced almonds, toasted
DSC_0182-1

Preheat oven to 350°.

To prepare crust, place crackers in a food processor;
DSC_0185-1

DSC_0186-1

process until crumbly.
DSC_0187-1

DSC_0189-1

Add 2 tablespoons sugar,
DSC_0190-1

DSC_0191-1

butter,
DSC_0192-1

DSC_0195-1

DSC_0196-1

and water;
DSC_0197-1

pulse just until moist.
DSC_0198-1

Place mixture in a 9-inch round removable-bottom tart pan coated with cooking spray, pressing into bottom and up sides of pan to 3/4 inch.
DSC_0199-1

DSC_0202-1

Bake at 350° for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool completely on a wire rack.

To prepare filling, combine cream cheese, (I did yogurt) 1/4 cup sugar (I did honey)
DSC_0205-1
and extracts
DSC_0207-1

in a medium bowl;
DSC_0208-1

stir until smooth. Spread mixture evenly over bottom of tart shell.
DSC_0231-1

To prepare topping, place 2 cups strawberries
DSC_0211-1

in food processor;
DSC_0212-1

DSC_0214-1

process until pureed.
DSC_0216-1

DSC_0217-1

Combine strawberry puree, 2/3 cup sugar,
DSC_0222-1

and cornstarch in a small saucepan
DSC_0223-1

over medium heat, stirring with a whisk.
DSC_0225-1

Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low; cook 1 minute. Remove glaze from heat, and cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally.

Combine 4 cups strawberries and juice; toss to coat. Arrange berries, bottoms up, in a circular pattern over filling. Spoon half of glaze evenly over berries (reserve remaining glaze for another use). Sprinkle nuts around edge. Cover and chill 3 hours.

Note: You can use either an 8 x 12-inch rectangular pan or a 9-inch round tart pan. The recipe also works with a 9-inch springform pan and a 10-inch pie plate

DSC_0232-1

DSC_0233-1

DSC_0234-1

DSC_0235-1

DSC_0236-1

Pulled Pork Sandwich with Homemade Bar B Que Sauce

Recipe

For Pork

1 8-10 lb Boston butt roast
2 tbsp. creole seasonings
2 tbsp. garlic powder
2 tbsp. onion powder
2 tbsp. chili powder
2 tbsp. black pepper
2 tbsp. paprika
1 tbsp. mustard powder
DSC_0253-2

1/2 c. brown sugar
DSC_0251-1

Mix all seasonings together.
DSC_0255-1

Rinse roast and pat dry, sprinkle half the seasonings on the roast.
DSC_0257-1

DSC_0259-1

DSC_0261-1

Marinate overnight if possible. Smoke roast at 220 degrees for 8 hours. Allow to cook and shred. (we have a smoker but we didn’t use it this time, I just placed the pork in the oven and cooked at 225 for a few hours (covered) then turned the heat up to 350 (uncovered) and cooked it the rest of the way until the internal temp was 160 degrees

DSC_0265-1

DSC_0263-1

DSC_0288-1

DSC_0292-1

DSC_0295-1

DSC_0293-1

For the Sauce:

2 c. ketchup
DSC_0267-1

DSC_0269-1

1 c. water
1/4 c. apple cider vinegar
DSC_0271-1

8 tbsp. brown sugar
DSC_0272-1

1/2 tbsp. black pepper
DSC_0274-1

1/2 tbsp. dry mustard
DSC_0277-1

DSC_0278-1

DSC_0279-1

2 tsp. creole seasonings
DSC_0281-1

1 tsp. garlic powder
DSC_0282-1

1 tsp. onion powder
DSC_0283-1

1 tbsp. molasses
DSC_0284-1

DSC_0285-1

1/2 tbsp. lemon juice
1/2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
DSC_0286-1

DSC_0287-1

DSC_0266-1

Mix well in a medium pot,
DSC_0304-1

DSC_0305-1

bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

To Assemble Sandwich:

Toast bun with a little butter,
DSC_0297-1

DSC_0301-1

pull pork with your hands or forks,
DSC_0302-1

toss in sauce and stack it!

DSC_0303-1

I made slaw for my pulled pork and this is the recipe

DSC_0309-1

DSC_0308-1

DSC_0313-1

DSC_0315-1

DSC_0317-1

and there you go!

Bacon-Cheddar Cauliflower Chowder

Oh man! I haven’t had bacon since Christmas! Crazy huh?! What is wrong with me!? HA! Just trying to eat healthier these days so I cut it out of my diet for a bit. But I have missed it and decided I needed to have some! Oh man I have missed it!!!

Recipe

Ingredients*:
8 slices center-cut bacon, chopped (half used for garnish) (I did 1 pound I LOVE bacon and I wanted extra)
1/2 small onion, chopped OR 1 teaspoon onion powder
1 celery stalk, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
salt & pepper
4 cups shredded or grated cauliflower (1/2 large head)
2 Tablespoons water
2 Tablespoons flour
2 cups chicken broth, divided
2 cups 2% milk
3-4 dashes hot sauce (or more or less)
2-1/2 cups (12oz) shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided (half used for garnish)
2 green onions, chopped (optional)
DSC_0203-1

1.Whisk together flour and 1/4 cup chicken broth in a small bowl then set aside.
DSC_0211-1

DSC_0212-1

DSC_0213-1

2.Saute bacon in a large soup pot over medium heat until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate then remove all but 1 Tablespoon drippings from the pot. Add chopped onion (if using,) celery,
DSC_0215-1

and garlic to the pot
DSC_0220-1

then season with salt and pepper and saute until vegetables are tender, about 4-5 minutes.
DSC_0222-1

3.Add cauliflower
DSC_0223-1

and onion powder (if using) to the pot then stir to combine. Add water
DSC_0225-1

then place a lid on top
DSC_0227-1

and steam cauliflower until tender, stirring a couple times, about 5-7 minutes. Add remaining chicken broth
DSC_0229-1

and milk
DSC_0230-1

DSC_0231-1
then turn up heat and bring to a boil.

at this point I blended my soup with my handy dandy hand blender to make it smooth
DSC_0233-1

4.Slowly whisk in flour/chicken broth mixture while stirring, then turn down heat and simmer for 3-4 minutes, or until chowder has thickened. Turn off heat then stir in 2 cups cheddar cheese until smooth,
DSC_0236-1

DSC_0239-1

then stir in half the cooked bacon. Taste and adjust salt, pepper, and/or hot sauce if necessary. Serve topped with remaining shredded cheese, cooked bacon, and green onions, if desired.
DSC_0245-1

DSC_0248-1

DSC_0250-1
*Use a food processor’s chopping and grating blades to make prepping veggies and cheese a breeze!

Here is that recipe for you again:

8 slices center-cut bacon, chopped (half used for garnish)
1/2 small onion, chopped OR 1 teaspoon onion powder
1 celery stalk, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
salt & pepper
4 cups shredded or grated cauliflower (1/2 large head)
2 Tablespoons water
2 Tablespoons flour
2 cups chicken broth, divided
2 cups 2% milk
3-4 dashes hot sauce (or more or less)
2-1/2 cups (12oz) shredded sharp cheddar cheese, divided (half used for garnish)
2 green onions, chopped (optional)

1.Whisk together flour and 1/4 cup chicken broth in a small bowl then set aside.

2.Saute bacon in a large soup pot over medium heat until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to a paper towel-lined plate then remove all but 1 Tablespoon drippings from the pot. Add chopped onion (if using,) celery, and garlic to the pot then season with salt and pepper and saute until vegetables are tender, about 4-5 minutes.

3.Add cauliflower and onion powder (if using) to the pot then stir to combine. Add water then place a lid on top and steam cauliflower until tender, stirring a couple times, about 5-7 minutes. Add remaining chicken broth and milk then turn up heat and bring to a boil.

4.Slowly whisk in flour/chicken broth mixture while stirring, then turn down heat and simmer for 3-4 minutes, or until chowder has thickened. Turn off heat then stir in 2 cups cheddar cheese until smooth, then stir in half the cooked bacon. Taste and adjust salt, pepper, and/or hot sauce if necessary. Serve topped with remaining shredded cheese, cooked bacon, and green onions, if desired.

*Use a food processor’s chopping and grating blades to make prepping veggies and cheese a breeze!

Blueberry Doughnut Muffins

DSC_0133-1

I saw these online and HAD to make them! They just looked and sounded SO amazing to me!!

Let me just tell you that my co workers are some lucky people! They get treats from me (like these) alllll the time!

Recipe

zest of 2 lemons
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
DSC_0071-1

1 1/3 cup fresh blueberries
DSC_0043-1

For the Glaze

3 tablespoons unsalted butter; melted
1 cup confectioners’ sugar; sifted
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon warm water
DSC_0019-1

1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Lightly grease a standard muffin tin, or line with 12 paper muffin cups.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the lemon zest

DSC_0030-1

DSC_0032-1

and sugars. Use your fingertips to incorporate the zest into the sugars until it is moist and fragrant.
DSC_0024-1

DSC_0027-1

DSC_0028-1

DSC_0029-1

DSC_0033-1

DSC_0034-1

DSC_0035-1

DSC_0037-1

3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment or in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer, cream together the butter,
DSC_0040-1

vegetable oil,
DSC_0042-1

DSC_0047-1

and sugars
DSC_0048-1

until smooth.
DSC_0052-1

Add the eggs
DSC_0054-1

DSC_0055-1

and vanilla,
DSC_0058-1

beating to combine.
DSC_0056-1

4. In a medium bowl, combine the flour,
DSC_0062-1

DSC_0063-1

baking powder,
DSC_0067-1

baking soda
DSC_0070-1

and salt.
DSC_0072-1

Stir the flour mixture into the butter mixture alternately with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour and making sure everything is thoroughly combined.
DSC_0077-1

Fold in the blueberries.
DSC_0079-1

DSC_0080-1

DSC_0084-1

5. Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared pan, filling the cups nearly full.
DSC_0086-1

DSC_0087-1

DSC_0088-1

6. Bake the muffins for 15 to 17 minutes, or until they’re a pale golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the middle of one of the center muffins comes out clean.
DSC_0090-1

DSC_0092-1

DSC_0095-1

DSC_0096-1

DSC_0097-1

DSC_0105-1

7. In a medium bowl, prepare the glaze by mixing together the melted butter, confectioners’ sugar,
DSC_0108-1

DSC_0110-1

vanilla, lemon juice and water. Whisk until smooth.

8. When muffins have cooled slightly, dip the muffin crown into the glaze
DSC_0113-1

DSC_0116-1

DSC_0117-1

DSC_0119-1

DSC_0120-1

DSC_0121-1

DSC_0122-1

DSC_0123-1

and allow the glaze to harden.
DSC_0125-1

At this point, you can leave them as is or go for the double dip. I glazed my muffins twice.

9. Serve warm, or cool on a rack and wrap airtight. Muffins will keep at room temperature for about a day.

Notes:

If you prefer a little more intense kick of lemon, feel free to substitute more lemon juice for the water in the recipe for the glaze.

DSC_0127-1

DSC_0128-1

DSC_0129-1

DSC_0131-1

DSC_0136-1

DSC_0138-1

DSC_0142-1

DSC_0146-1

here is that recipe again:

zest of 2 lemons
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 1/3 cup fresh blueberries

For the Glaze

3 tablespoons unsalted butter; melted
1 cup confectioners’ sugar; sifted
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon warm water

1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Lightly grease a standard muffin tin, or line with 12 paper muffin cups.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the lemon zest and sugars. Use your fingertips to incorporate the zest into the sugars until it is moist and fragrant.

3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment or in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer, cream together the butter, vegetable oil, and sugars until smooth. Add the eggs and vanilla, beating to combine.

4. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir the flour mixture into the butter mixture alternately with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour and making sure everything is thoroughly combined. Fold in the blueberries.

5. Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared pan, filling the cups nearly full.

6. Bake the muffins for 15 to 17 minutes, or until they’re a pale golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the middle of one of the center muffins comes out clean.

7. In a medium bowl, prepare the glaze by mixing together the melted butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, lemon juice and water. Whisk until smooth.

8. When muffins have cooled slightly, dip the muffin crown into the glaze and allow the glaze to harden. At this point, you can leave them as is or go for the double dip. I glazed my muffins twice.

9. Serve warm, or cool on a rack and wrap airtight. Muffins will keep at room temperature for about a day.

Notes:

If you prefer a little more intense kick of lemon, feel free to substitute more lemon juice for the water in the recipe for the glaze.

Carrot Ginger Soy Dressing

Recipe

This dressing is the BEST! Tastes like the Ginger dressing you get at a sushi restaurant! The first time I did this recipe I did it in my food processor as I didn’t have a blender. I recommend doing it in a blender as it is smoooooth…

ALSO the recipe calls for Iceberg Lettuce and I had green leaf lettuce, it does go better with iceberg. So I HIGHLY recommend what the recipe calls for…

(I doubled the recipe)

2 medium carrots, peeled, ends trimmed and sliced
2-inch piece ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
2 shallots, peeled and sliced
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon superfine sugar
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon salt
DSC_0162-1

1 large head Iceberg lettuce, quartered and cored (I used Green leaf as that is all I had at the time I made this)
Freshly chopped cilantro leaves, for garnish
1 large red Thai chile, seeded, deveined and thinly sliced, for garnish

Combine the carrots,
DSC_0166-1

ginger,
DSC_0169-1

DSC_0171

shallots,
DSC_0172-1

DSC_0174-1

soy sauce,
DSC_0176-1

vinegar,
DSC_0177-1

water,
DSC_0178-1

sugar,
DSC_0179-1

DSC_0180-1

and vegetable oil in a blender
DSC_0182-1

and puree until dressing becomes a slightly thick sauce. Season with the salt.
DSC_0186-1

DSC_0188-1

DSC_0189-1

DSC_0190-1

DSC_0191-1

DSC_0197-1

pour the dressing over the top of whatever lettuce you use. Finish with cilantro and chile.

DSC_0237-1

Aunt Michele’s Mexican Brown Rice

Got this Recipe from my Aunt Michele!

I feel her rice was better when she made it than mine. But I tried it! I added extra ingredients as I always do, to make it my own!

So you will need:
oil (I used olive)
2 cups Instant Brown Rice
2 cups water
1 Can Fire Roasted tomatoes
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
DSC_0337-1

1/2 Green Bell Pepper, chopped
DSC_0338-1

1 chicken Bouillon cube
DSC_0336-1

Start by preheating a pot or large skillet over medium heat on stove, Coat the bottom with Olive oil
DSC_0339-1

add the onions you chopped and saute
DSC_0341-1

DSC_0342-1

Cook for about 5-7 minutes then add in rice
DSC_0343-1

DSC_0345-1

saute the rice a little with the onions and oil, stirring constantly till rice and onions are a little bit more browned
DSC_0347-1

then I added in the green bell pepper (I didn’t add these with the onions, like you probably should, as I didn’t want the bell peppers to cook long, wanted them to be a little crunchy in the rice, not soggy)

DSC_0349-1

Stir in with rice

Then add in the fire roasted tomatoes with juice
DSC_0350-1

stir to combine with onions and Bell pepper
DSC_0352-1

then add in the 2 cups of water
DSC_0353-1

DSC_0354-1

DSC_0355-1

then add in the chicken bouillon
DSC_0356-1

DSC_0357-1

DSC_0358-1

turn heat down to medium low heat and place lid on pot and cook rice until there is no more water, about 10-15 minutes

Then take lid off and fluff rice a little with a fork
DSC_0359-1

DSC_0361-1

Serve with hot sauce or sour cream, or both! (not sour cream though, if you are trying to be healthy).

DSC_0364-1

DSC_0365-1

Extra Crispy Spicy Fried Chicken & Christmas

How Christmas works for us is we spend Christmas Eve with Normy’s family and then Christmas Day with friends. Before Normy and I were married I used to make my parents and bro dinner on Christmas Eve and that was always a tradition. But things change, and you get married and you have to go to more family things. So this year I wanted to continue my tradition that I have done in the past and I wanted to do dinner with my parents. We were going to go out to dinner. But then I was looking on Pinterest (damn it) and I found this recipe for extra crispy fried chicken and so I called my mom and was like hey mom how about I cook instead! We had decided to go out to eat to make less work for me. But come ON! I love being overwhelmed with tons to do! Especially cooking! And who wants to eat out? Not me! I like cooking my own food because I like HOMEMADE!  So I suggested instead of me cooking it all, we all chip in! My mom offered to make her potatoes salad and then my bro could make baked beans (ewwww) and then I could make the chicken and dessert. A southern style dinner! Not the healthiest, but (in my opinion) you’re supposed to be bad around the holidays! Oh and add in fried okra! Gotta have that! YUM! If you don’t already feel fat and bloated from the fried chicken add in some FRIED okra! MMMMMMMM

So whenever I make fried chicken I soak mine in buttermilk over night and I always add in Cajun seasoning. It just makes the fried chicken THAT much better! Then when you are ready to cook it drain the buttermilk

Here’s the recipe I used for the chicken
DSC_0188-1

So I slacked on the process of how the chicken was made because Normy cooked it and I was having fun talking with my family and opening presents!
DSC_0191-1

My mom and dad outdid themselves on gifts! appreciate it very much! Was nice, and a total surprise!

3 eggs
1/3 cup water
1 cup hot red pepper sauce (I like Louisiana Hot Sauce)
4 cups flour
2 teaspoon pepper
2 teaspoon paprika
3 teaspoons cayenne pepper
1 quart buttermilk (optional)
Salt, Pepper, and Garlic Powder (to taste)
1 (1 to 2 1/2-pound) chicken, cut into pieces (I used drumsticks and thighs)
Peanut Oil, for frying

1. Place cut-up chicken in a large bowl, and cover with buttermilk. Cover and chill for two hours, or overnight. This is an optional (but recommended) step.

2. In a large bowl, add eggs, water, and red pepper sauce. Whisk until combined.

3. In a large gallon freezer bag, mix flour, pepper, paprika, and cayenne.

4. Remove chicken from buttermilk (if marinated) and sprinkle lightly with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.

5. Place all chicken pieces in freezer bag with flour mixture.
DSC_0219-1

Shake until all pieces are evenly coated.

6. Remove chicken pieces one at a time, shaking excess flour. Dip each piece in the egg mixture,
and return to bag of flour. After all pieces have been dipped in the egg mixture and put back in the bag, give it a second shake to coat chicken pieces again.
DSC_0234-1

DSC_0237-1

7. Heat oil in deep fryer or deep pan to 350 degrees. Working in batches, drop each piece of chicken into the hot oil.
DSC_0212-1

DSC_0215-1

DSC_0218-1

DSC_0233-1

Fry for 15-18 minutes, or until golden brown, turning occasionally if oil does not completely cover chicken.
DSC_0238-1

DSC_0239-1
Keep in mind that dark meat chicken takes longer to cook than white meat. Watch your wing segments, as well; these will finish cooking first.

DSC_0286-1

DSC_0292-1

We drained the chicken on a plate lined with paper towels to drain the excess grease.
DSC_0251-1

MMMM now for the fried okra! We did the frozen kind. If it was summer I would have gone to the farmers market and got fresh okra. But it’s winter and well we had to do frozen!
DSC_0285-1

DSC_0291-1

Mom’s Potato salad, it’s the best!
DSC_0293-1

Dinner is served!
DSC_0294-1

Check out what my mom and dad got Normy!
DSC_0231-1

A Smoker! I am SOOOOOO looking forward to smoked meat and recipes and pictures of smoked MEAT! YUM!

My Normy, My Dad, My Bro and My mom! I loves them all!
DSC_0232-1

My turn!
DSC_0242-1

my mom has these dishes that I love, and I wanted hers! So she got me some of my own!
DSC_0246-1

DSC_0249-1

a little something we got my mom and dad
DSC_0299-1

and this was the best part! look at what my bro Made me!
DSC_0334-1

DSC_0335-1

I LOVE Ladybugs and I LOVE that he made this for me!

My family!
DSC_0340-1

Couldn’t leave Normy out of the picture!
DSC_0343-1

This one is great! Normy always wants Tang! I don’t know why? But he loves it and always says to me he wants Tang, guess my mom got the memo:
DSC_0198-1

DSC_0199-1