Thursday, March 21, 2019

Community Potluck for March.

I know I'm late posting this, but hey, life happens and well, better late than never. 

Pardon me, but I couldn't resist using a few cliches.

We had our monthly Community Potluck last week, no surprises, lots of great food.  
Quite frankly, I'm running out of new ways to phrase this, so I'll go with the same old, same old. 
We have a lot of great cooks here, who love to make and bring not only great tasting food, but also food that is interesting visually as well. 
And here's the offerings,
Smoked Sausage and Sauerkraut
Lasagna
Biscuits
Meatballs
Pasta with ham
Broccoli Salad
Rice Stir fry
Rice Salad
Deviled Eggs
 and more Deviled Eggs
Chile
Chutney Ribs (I'll share how I made them in a day or so)
Cake
More Cake
 Red Velvet Cake
 Banana Pudding
 Strawberry Cake
 A shot of the desserts with Santa
 Who always accompanies the Pineapple
Well that's it for this month's food. 

I swear if you go home hungry from one of our potlucks, that's your problem.

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Saturday, March 16, 2019

Klar suppe med melboller og kødballer (soup with meatballs and dumplings)

This month for Soup Saturday Swappers, the theme is Meatball soups.    Sneha of Sneha's Recipe is our hostess and she was the one who suggested Meatballs.   And I'm thankful she did because I got to make one my favorite Danish soups for this. Although I did twist it up smidge.

Mom used to make this once in awhile, although she'd also load it up with vegetables.
But...
This is a great tasting soup, and relatively quick to make as well.   I also realized it's been a long time since I've made Melboller, (flour dumplings) which just happens to be my favorite thing to put in soup.
Klar suppe med melboller og kødballer

So here goes.
True confessions time.  I was out of ground pork, so I made my own.  Which was so dead simple to do, I'm shocked, shocked I tell you,  that I've  never made my own.
HELLO!!!!  I think I'll be making my own from now on.  
Ground pork for Klar suppe med melboller og kødballer

I also played with some interesting seasonings.  I used some Healthy Solutions Italian Meatball seasoning in the meat as well as the soup. and figured if I was going to be that good and not use salt, I'd also throw in some Turmeric.
I'm glad I did.
Klar suppe med melboller og kødballer


Yield: 2 Servings

Klar Suppe med Kødballer og Melboller (Clear Soup with Meatballs and Dumplings

prep time: 15 minscook time: 15 minstotal time: 30 mins
This is a fun soup for kids and adults, or anyone who likes meatballs and dumplings

ingredients:

Meatballs
  • 1/2 lb. ground pork
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 egg
  • 4 tablespoons flour
  • 1/4 cup finely minced onion
  • 1 teaspoon Healthy Solutions Italian Meatballs Seasoning
Melboller
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp. salt (opt.)
Soup Stock
  • 4 cups chicken stock, no salt added
  • 2 teaspoons Healthy Solutions Italian Meatball Seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon ground Turmeric
  • 1 carrot, thinly sliced

instructions:

  1. Bring the soup stock and carrot  to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes.  Turn the heat down. 
  2. Form the meat into small balls and add to the soup stock, but don't let it boil.   If it comes to a boil, add an ice cube or two to bring it back down.  (use the instructions for the melboller as a guide.)
  3. Cook until the meatballs just rise to the top of the soup, about 6-7 minutes.  Remove to a bowl while you make the Melboller. 
  4. When both are cooked, place some of the meatballs and some of the Melboller into a bowl and pour the stock over them and serve. 
Melboller
  1. Bring water and butter to a boil in a saucepan, turn down the heat, add the flour all at once and stir it with either a Danish Dough Whisk or a wooden spoon. Continue to cook over low heat, stirring constantly until the mixture forms a ball and pulls away from the side of the pot, leaving a thin film on the bottom. Remove from heat, let cool a little, not too much, maybe 3-5 minutes or so. Beat in one egg by hand. The mixture will look ropy and gloppy, but it will pull together. As soon as one egg has been incorporated, add the second egg and continue to beat, until it is also incorporated. Set aside for a few minutes while you bring your broth to a boil, turn down the heat, and then make the melboller. Take a small spoon, I used an Ice Tea spoon, dip it into the broth which should be just below the boil, then dip it into the dough, forming a nice little oval shaped ball. Place it gently into the broth, and continue to make the dumplings until all the dough has been used up. Keep the heat on under the broth/soup, but don't let it boil. If it does get too hot, and boils, dump a little cold water into it to stop it, or do as I did, put in a couple of ice cubes. If it boils, the dumplings come apart and while they may taste good, they won't look all that great. Continue to cook for about 10 minutes or so, until the dumplings are cooked through. Serve with the soup as is or take them out, cook some vegetables in the soup stock, and then add the dumplings just before serving so they get a chance to heat up.
Created using The Recipes Generator
Check out what the other Meatball Soup the  bloggers have made for March 2019!

Meatball and Noodle Soup (Sopa Albondigas con Fideo)  by Palatable Pastime
Zucchetti and Meatball Soup  by  Home Sweet Homestead
Green Gram & Chicken Meatball Clear Soup  by  Sneha's Recipe
Albondigas Soup by A Day in the Life on the Farm
Shrimp and Pork Meatball Wonton Noodle Soup  by  Karen's Kitchen Stories
Clear soup with meatballs and dumplings (Klar suppe med kødboller og melboller  by Sids Sea Palm Cooking
Spanish Meatball Soup with Saffron and Kale by A Spoonful of Thyme
One-Pot Fennel & Stout Beef Meatball Stew  by  Faith, Hope, Love, & Luck Survive Despite a Whiskered Accomplice http://faithhopeloveandlucksurvivedespiteawhiskeredaccomp.

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Friday, March 15, 2019

Margarita Shrimp Tacos for #FishFridayFoodies

Time for Fish Friday Foodies, in which we bloggers make and share a recipe and pictures, of course celebrating the theme of the month.
The theme this month is Tacos or Taquitos and our hostess is Karen of Karen's Kitchen Stories.

Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm was the instigator for this group, and she welcomes new people all the time.  Just leave her a comment on her blog if you'd like to participate.
So...
I put my thinking cap on and debated, for about 15 minutes.  I was debating between something kinda sweet or something savory to stuff the taco's with.  

Well, last week I did a cooking demo at a local RV park and made and shared the recipe for Margarita Shrimp and Tomatillo Cheese Grits.  My take on Southern style Shrimp and Grits.  Both recipes are from my latest cookbook, Simple Shrimp Recipes - 25+ easy Shrimp Appetizers, Entrees and Sauces.  I know, shameless plug here, but if I can't plug myself, who will?  hmmmm...

I'd forgotten how much I like Margarita Shrimp, and then the thinking cap flew off.
I could stuff tacos with those shrimp.
So I got some more shrimp, made them up, and stuffed my newest obsession, Cauliflower Tortillas with the shrimp and my mouth went ERMAGARD, and promptly downed two of them.  They were almost totally guilt free as well, calorie, gluten and carb wise.  
Can anyone say Trifecta?
'
The only thing that might have made them better, would have been the addition of a slice or two of ripe avocado, or maybe a drizzle of crema or Creme Fraiche.

But for now, I'll take them any way I can get them.


Seriously, they're that good.

Yield: 2-4 servings

Margarita Shrimp Taco's

prep time: 10 minscook time: 10 minstotal time: 20 mins
These make a great light dinner, lunch or even a snack? You can serve them to pescatarians almost guilt free. You can even make them for your gluten free family and friends.

ingredients:

Poaching Liquid
  • Poaching liquid for Margarita Shrimp
  • 2 pounds shrimp, in shell or shelled.
  • 2 quarts water
  • 2 tablespoons lightly cracked peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon or more to taste, cayenne pepper
  • 1 bottle beer
  • 1 lemon, quartered and juice squeezed into pot
  • 1 teaspoon dill
  • 1 teaspoon celery seed
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 bay leaves
Margarita Shrimp
  • Lime Tequila Shrimp
  • 2 lbs. Poached Shrimp (use above recipe or make your own)
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 oz. tequila
  • 2 oz fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Taco Shells - Corn, Flour or Cauliflower
Toppings - Lettuce, Tomato, Cilantro, Crema, Avocado, Cheese

instructions:

Poaching Liquid
  1. Prepare poaching liquid by letting it come to a boil and simmering it for a few minutes to release the spices into the water.
  2. Add the shrimp to the boiling water, one third at a time. Remove the shrimp after a couple of minutes, or when they start to float up and turn pink.
  3. Place them on a baking sheet to cool down so you can peel them later if needed or desired. Set them aside while poaching the rest of the shrimp.
Margarita Shrimp
  1. Melt butter in pan, add shrimp, tequila, lime juice and cilantro.
  2. Warm through for just a couple of minutes or less, then serve, stuffed into the Cauliflower Tortilla shells, or your choice of taco shells.  
  3. Top with a combo of Cilantro, tomato and avocado or crema or whatever you like
Created using The Recipes Generator

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Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Cauliflower Tortilla Shells

I've seen and read a lot about using Cauliflower to make pizza crusts and other things, like these tortilla shells.
Cauliflower Tortilla Shells
As well as using them as a sub for mashed potatoes, or ricing them and eating them instead of rice. 
And well, gee, I was neutral on the whole idea. 

I love cauliflower, but I like eating it raw, or steamed with a little butter or my favorite,  Cauliflower with Herbs.

I don't make it that often, cause I can eat the whole head all by myself.   Which is OK, except for all that butter. sigh

And then last week, I bought a head of cauliflower and realized I already had one in the fridge, and we were going to be eating out a lot that week. 
What to do?
I decided to try making tortilla shells out of riced cauliflower. so I googled it and there were all kinds of sites out there with recipes.  Which all boiled down to the same basic recipe.  1 head of cauliflower, riced, 2 eggs and seasonings. A couple of places mentioned adding cheese to it, but the amount they suggested seemed like a lot.
So I did what I usually do with something like this.   I played with it.
And while I love corn tortilla's and flour tortilla's, I can happily make and eat these Cauliflower Tortilla shells.
Cauliflower Tortilla Shells
 Literally, I can eat these plain, OK so a little cheese on top doesn't hurt either.
Cauliflower Tortilla Shells

And...
They cook perfectly in my little toaster oven.  In fact, I cooked some in my big oven and some in my little toaster oven, and I liked the ones in the toaster oven better.  Which is a good thing because we're coming into the hot season here, and the regular oven tends to heat up the house.

I made these for Taco Tuesday last week, and I'm making more this week as well.  
Cauliflower Tortilla Shells
 Cause they were that darn good.
Cauliflower Tortilla Shells
 I had to include one picture taken with my phone,
Cauliflower Tortilla Shell Taco

I even used one under my Huevo Ranchero's for my Sunday breakfast.   And I didn't miss the regular tortilla at all.
Cauliflower Tortilla Shells under Huevos Rancheros
If you make more than you'll eat at one meal, just wrap them well and keep them in  the fridge for up to 3 days.



Yield: 6 tortilla's

Cauliflower Tortillas

prep time: 5 minscook time: 10 minstotal time: 15 mins
These don't taste exactly like a corn tortilla, but you don't miss the corn either.

ingredients:

  • 1/2 head Cauliflower, riced in the food processor
  • 1 egg - beaten lightly
  • 1/2 cup shredded monterey jack/cheddar cheese (Cojack) (optional)

instructions:

  1. Cook the cauliflower in a food safe bowl in the microwave for 1-2 minutes at 80 % power.  Press out as much liquid as possible, using either a cheese cloth or a cloth pressed on top of the cauliflower.  Allow to cool.
  2. Mix in one egg, until it is well mixed.   Add 1/2 cup cheese if desired. 
  3. Measure out 1/4 cup of the mixture, and press into a rough circle (4-5 inches wide) on parchment paper.    Bake in toaster oven at 400 degrees for about 8 minutes, then turn over and bake an additional 2-3 minutes.  (my toaster oven does two at a time).  Remove from parchment paper and continue until all the tortilla's are cooked.  Fill with taco meat and toppings.  
  4. These are fairly sturdy, but will not act like a traditional taco shell.  They do sometimes come  apart as you eat them. 
Created using The Recipes Generator

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Friday, March 8, 2019

Dumbo Style Cake

A friend asked me a couple of months ago if I would make a Dumbo cake for a baby shower.   I casually tossed off, sure no problem, happy to do it.
Dumbo style Baby Shower Cake
And I was, but then came the test, how to make a Dumbo.
I went online, I googled, I checked Pinterest and even Etsy.
Did you know you can buy Dumbo figurines made of fondant? 
You can, and you pay for the artist who made them.  They're not that cheap.

No problem, I thought, I used to do some clay sculptures, back in my way, way, way younger days and maybe I could play with fondant and make my own.

Well, that idea hit the skids almost right away.
I live in the south, and the humidity would have made for a sorry looking Dumbo, he would have been all flollopy.

Yes, that's a word, flollopy, the same way you get when you have one drink too many.
Sorry, I got caught up in a word there.

Well, last year I made Calla Lilies out of gum paste for a wedding cake I made and I decided to play with the gum paste.  I thought the Calla Lilies turned out pretty good.   
Calla Lilies made from Gum Paste

Calla Lilies made from Gum Paste
I'd made a few extra's so put them on a little cake for the Bridal Shower.
Calla Lilies made of Gum Paste
So I was pretty confident I could do something with Gum Paste.
Honestly, I kinda impressed myself with how well it turned out.


Here's a few pictures of the process of making my Dumbo.

I did use this website as a guide though, and I want to give Kudos to him/her for the clear pictures.

I also wasn't going to post about the process, so I just used my phone to take pictures, and then I thought well, maybe someone might be interested in the process. 

I used Gum Paste and made the basic figure, added the front legs, then the collar,  I used toothpicks to make a kind of ruffle around it.

Dumbo style topper for  Baby Shower Cake

Dumbo style topper for  Baby Shower Cake
Let it dry, and then added the ears, flaring them out slightly. 
Dumbo style topper for  Baby Shower Cake
After that, I made his little hat
Dumbo style topper for  Baby Shower Cake
Let him dry for a couple of days and then painted him using gel food coloring mixed with a little gum paste and water.  Next time, I'll thin it out with some vodka so that it may dry faster, I hope.  We had really humid weather that week.
Dumbo style topper for  Baby Shower Cake
Dumbo style topper for  Baby Shower Cake
Here he is on top of the cake.   Thanks to the high humidity, he still glistened as he wasn't completely dry.  I thought he resembled a porcelain figurine, myself.
Dumbo style Baby Shower Cake
And there you have it, my venture into modeling a figurine with Gum Paste.
I had fun with him.
I even bought some more gum paste to play with. giggle. 

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Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Spice Bundt Cake with Lemon Cream

I made such a good cake last week for the Legion Cake Raffle.
Spice Bundt Cake with Lemon Cream and Peanut Brittle topping

I know I've mentioned that I do this a bunch of times already, so I won't bore you with the details.

I also like to make something different every time, and this week was no exception.

However, I had a fail cake, something that rarely happens to me.    This cake barely rose, and in fact, it may have risen a little, but it sure wasn't by much.
So... I did what any self respecting baker would do, I made another one, and threw it gently into the freezer to cool.
The top one was the final cake, the bottom one, the fail.

I'd also had the idea that I could put a layer of homemade Lemon Curd in the middle, and so I made some.
While I don't want to call it a total mistake, it was a trifle strong.
OK, so my taste buds puckered up and went into hiding when I taste tested it.  Gee...
But I wasn't down for the count yet.
I grabbed some whipping cream out of the fridge, whipped it up and then folded the lemon curd into it.
WOW, is all I can say, it tempered the sharpness of the lemon curd, and well, let me just say, I have an idea that I want to play with for the future.  But for today, I just cut the cooled bundt cake in half, added some of what I'm now calling lemon cream, and then added more to the outside of the cake.
I'd had enough batter from the second cake that I also baked a little mini cake, so I taste tested it. 
Dang, it was good.
However, I did feel that there needed to be something more, and then the light bulb lit up.  I'd made some Peanut Brittle for a friend, and had made two batches, so I had some on hand.  I chopped it up and sprinkled it on top. 
And that was the crowning touch.
Perfection... even if I say so myself.



Yield: 12 Servings

Spice Bundt Cake with Lemon Cream

This Spice Bundt cake goes so well with the Lemon Cream topping and is perfect for any special occasion.

ingredients:

Cake
  • 3/4 Cup Butter
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2-3 teaspoons Spice Mixture (recipe follows)
  • 2 3/4 cups sifted self rising flour
  • 1/4 cup potato starch
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
Spice Mixture
  •  2 tablespoons Cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons whole allspice - ground or 1 tablespoon ground allspice
  • 2 tablespoons ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
Lemon Cream
  • 2 cups Lemon Curd
  • 2 cups lightly whipped cream
  • Optional:  2 teaspoons sugar added to the cream.
  • You can add more sugar to this if you like.  Just whip it into the cream.

instructions:

Cake
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees, and grease and flour a 10 cup bundt pan/.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar together for at least 5 minutes, until it is lighter in color. While it is creaming, sift the flour, potato starch and spices together.
  3. Add the eggs, one at a time and mix well.
  4. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture, mix together and add half the milk.
  5. Alternate adding the flour and milk together, finishing off with the flour. I like to add the vanilla to the milk when mixing the cake.
  6. Pour the batter into the bundt pan, and bake for 55 minutes, testing for doneness by using a toothpick and also by touching the top of the cake lightly and seeing if it springs back.
Lemon Cream
  1. Lemon cream - Whip the cream lightly, not stiff. Fold the Lemon curd into the cream, refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. Let cool and then cut the cake in half, spread 1 3/4 cups of the Lemon Cream in the middle. You can use less, but aim for a good layer.
  3. Frost the outside with the remainder of the Lemon Cream. I find that if I pipe it onto the sides with a star tip, it's easy to spread out. Decorate the top with the remainder of the Lemon Cream
  4. You can also dress it with some crushed and chopped peanut brittle if desired.
  5. Refrigerate until ready to serve
Created using The Recipes Generator

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Monday, March 4, 2019

First Monday Favorites - March - 28

It's time for First Monday Favorites and I had a grand choice of two things.  I didn't bake or make a whole lot of new things this past month.  I've had a lot of other things on my plate and quite frankly, I wasn't feeling like doing much of anything new.
First Monday Favorites

I made a PB&J cake for the Legion, which was new, and while it was good, it wasn't my favorite recipe of the month.
PB&J Cake
I also made a favorite of mine from many years ago, Mini Toad in a Hole.
Mini Toad in a Hole

Well, guess which one won?

The Mini Toad in a Hole.  
Mini Toad in a Hole

Mini Toad in a Hole
I made it for breakfast, two or maybe three? days in a row.

Nothing like overdoing it, is there?

Nah, not a bit, but having it one day, reminded me of how much I loved it when I'd made it in the past, for dinner.

But boy does it work well for breakfast.

I want to know what your favorite recipe was from last month.

Not just the one with the most views but your own personal favorite.   You know, the one recipe that you know you're either going to make a lot or the one that you've already made multiple times.

Yup, that one.


Inlinkz Link Party

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