Stay tuned for my New Years eve finger foods!

Happy New Years eve! Tonight I am making some finger foods. This will include Broccoli bites, shrimp puffs, toasted ravioli, hot wings, meatballs, oreo balls(revamped), and of coarse… some black eye peas(the only non-finger food).  I hope that y’all enjoy the new year and happy cooking! I will post the food as I prepare it!

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Outbacks Alice springs chicken and Bennigans broc. bites! oh my!

For Bennigans Broccoli bites….

I took a 16 oz. box of frozen broccoli and de-thawed. I mixed that with a bag of shredded cheese, some chopped bacon bits( I used the pre-cooked  bacon, microwaved and chopped. I used half the box), 3 tablespoons of minced onion(sweet), and 2 1/2 tablespoons of flour. Mix that all together and place in the refrigerator for an hour(if you are in a hurry.. freeze for 20 min.). Take 3 eggs and whisk in a bowl. In a separate bowl take a cup of Italian bread crumbs and 1/2 cup of panko bread crumbs and mix together. Take your broccoli mixture and form into balls with your hands, place in the egg wash, then bread crumbs, then into a deep fryer(or oil in a dutch oven). Fry for about 2 min.(or until they are golden), then take out and place on a paper lined plate to drain. Serve with honey mustard.

Bennigans honey mustard

3/4 cup of sour cream(I use greek yogurt)

1/3 cup of mayo

1/ cup of Dijon mustard

1/3 cup honey

1 tblsp. lime juice

Mix all ingredients until smooth and refrigerate

Outbacks Alice springs Chicken:

1 cup Dijon mustard

1 cup honey

1 tsp. lime juice

4-6 boneless chicken breasts

1 pkg of mushrooms

2 tablespoons butter

salt and pepper to taste

8 slices of bacon,cooked

shredded cheese

Outback’s Alice Springs Chicken:

Mix(preferably with an electric mixer) mustard, honey, lemon juice and 1 tbsp of olive oil. Pour 1/2 of the mixture over the chicken in a ziploc bag and place in the fridge for at least 2 hours(but you can marinate overnight). Chill the remaining marinate to serve with the chicken. Once you are ready to start cooking…Spray frying pan w/ cooking spray(I use a cast iron skillet or a cast iron panini press), sear chicken on both sides until cooked(about 8-10 min. Per side). In a separate pan… Melt the butter and saute the mushrooms until golden. Take the cooked chicken, place in an oven safe dish. top each chicken breast with 2 pieces of bacon across each breast, top with mushrooms and shredded cheese. Place in the oven on (low) broil until cheese is melted and golden and sprinkle with parsley!

Walllaaaa! Happy eating y’all!

southern banana pudding

I did not make this today but…. it is an all time favorite! If you read my blog, you know that I am NOT a sweet person. BUT, OMG this is heaven! take 3 cups of COLD milk, 2 pkg.s of banana flavored instant pudding, 1 tub(8 oz.) of cool whip, thawed and divided. 1/2 box of Vanilla wafers, and 3 bananas, sliced

Pour milk into a large bowl. Add the pudding mix. Beat with a whisk until blended. let stand for about 10 min. genly fold in 1 1/2 cups oth the thawed cool whip. take about a 2 or 3 quart serving bowl and line the bottom with the wafers, then banana, then pudding and repeat until all of the pudding is gone. Then take the remaining whipped cream and place on the very top. I then like to line the bowl with more wafers! mmmmmmmmmmmmm that is some southern flavor y’all! Happy eating!

leftovers, leftovers, leftovers

Everyone who knows me knows that I do NOT know how to cook for 2! This means that I ALWAYS have left overs. I do my best to revamp them in some way. Well, tonight I did not feel like making a huge dinner(yes, even ppl. who love to cook sometimes don’t feel like it. lol) and I had leftovers in the fridge. So, I made 2 different dishes that took me about 10 min. and it was still yummy!

I had a bbq chicken breast left over from when I made the pork loin.so, I steamed some veggies and mixed with cheese and a little ranch dressing. easy peasy and still healthy!

I had 1/2 a chicken breast left over from last nights recipe (skillet chicken w/garlic linguine & tomato sauce). so, I boiled some frozen tortelinni and placed the chicken on top..

Waaallllaaaa! Tooo easy! Happy eating y’all!

skillet Chicken w/ garlic linguine & tomato sauce

The first thing that I did was pound out 2 chicken breasts with a mallet(if you don’t have a mallet, you can use a pan). Once the chicken breasts were flattened I cut them in half and seasoned with salt and pepper. Next, take a skillet and add a tblsp. of butter( I use I can’t believe its not butter). Once the butter is melted,add 1/2 sweet onion(diced),  a pkg of mushrooms, 1/2 tsp. Worshtishire Sauce and minced garlic. Saute until golden. Once the mushrooms & onions are golden, add 1 (14.5oz)can of diced tomatoes and 2 tblspns. of your fav. spaghetti sauce. season with a pinch of salt, pepper and oregano to taste. If your tomatoes are a bit tart… add a pinch of sugar to balance the flavor out!

While you are doing your sauce. Take a cast iron skillet and pour about 1 tsp. of olive oil (enough just to cover the surface of the pan). Once the oil is hot, add the chicken. Cook on each side for 8-10 min.

For the pasta: I took 1/3 of a box of whole grain linguine and placed in boiling, salted water. i cooked until aldente(about 8-1 min). drain all of the water(keep 1/3 cup of the startchy water just incase you need to loosen up the sauce). Mix the pasta with 1 tblsp. of butter and 1 tblspn. of minced garlic and lemon zest(or lemon pepper), and toss!

Place some pasta on a plate first. then, top with your chicken breast, tomato mixture, your fav. shredded cheese, AND…(I know you have left overs from the holidays) crispy onions(the ones you top your green bean casserole with)!

And, WAAAAALLLLLLAAAAAAAAAAA! A VERY Yummy meal!!!!!!!!! Happy eating Y’all!

The perfect pork loin

The first thing I do when I want to smoke any type of meat is soak wood chunks overnight. Soaking the wood allows it to smoke longer and not just light on fire. About an hour before I decide to even light the grill I season the pork loin with my fav. seasonings. Make your own dry rub. Everyone has diff. tastes. So, as I have said time and time again…. unless I feel that a particular spice is really relevant to the recipe, I feel that everyone has their own likes and dislikes. Then I injected the pork with Diet coke and beer. Yes, I know this sounds BIZARE! But,the coke gives a little sweetness and the beer just helps to make it sooooo moist.

Once the charcoals were ready, I placed the wood on top and placed the pork loin on the grill. I smoked the pork for 1 hour and then took off of the grill. Placed in a pan topped with my Fav. bbq sauce(Rudy’s from Texas), covered with foil and placed in a 250 degree oven for another hour. 30 min. in I injected with more beer. Once the meat is done, I let rest for 30 min. Letting the meat sit is vital! This keeps in the juices. If you cut it right away, the juices will pour out and the meat will dry out.

And that is it… Happy eating y’all ad MERRY Christmas!

mint choc. chip cookies, fresh dog treats… oh my!!

Last night my husband an I were invited over to a close friends house for a Christmas eve dinner. It was a last min. invitation so I was scrambling on what to cook to bring. I thought about a savory dish. But lets face it, a lot of warm dishes either don’t travel really well or, you would rather serve it when it is hot. So, I made deserts! Pepermint-oreo balls (posted recipe on 11/22.. and I have an idea for a new twist on them. Will post at the end), Mint Chocolate chip cookies and homemade dog biscuits for their 2 dogs. I can not take credit for either of these recipes. But they are so easy and so good!

For the mint Chocolate chip cookies:

I got this recipe from Betty Crocker. I am going to post the recipe as they have it printed. But, on a side note. I always put the dough for any cookie in the refrigerator until cool(over night if you can). 1 pouch betty Crocker sugar cookie mix

1/2 cup butter softened

1/4-1/2 tsp. mint extract

6-8 drops of green food color

1 egg

1 cup each creme de menthe baking chips and chocolate chips( i used dark)

Mix the first 5 ingredients in a bowl or food processor until the dough is soft. Then fold in the chips. using a scoop or a tsp.. drop dough 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 min. cool for 3 min. then remove from cookie sheet to a wire rack.

Doggie treats:

I got this recipe from Rachel ray’s October issue. My dogs absolutely love them so, I thought it would be a perfect gift for friends who have dogs. Every time I make these I have to add a ton more flour b.c the batch is so sticky. They still turn out good though.

2 eggs

1/2 cup canned pure  pumpkin puree

2 tbsp. dry milk powder

2 1/2 cups white or whole wheat flour

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees in a bow, stir together all of the ingredients;add 2 tsp. water or enough so that the dough comes together. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough 1/2″ thick. Cut into shapes with a cookie cutter. gather the scraps, combine, roll and form more. Repeat until all the dough is used.Place the biscuits 1″ apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 20 min, then turn over and bake until hardened,another 20 min. Let cool on the pan.

Idea for the peppermint  balls…. In the spring. Take reg. or white oreos and instead of reg. cream cheese…. use a flavored one like strawberry or pineapple then roll in white chocolate and take a spring colored m&m to top with.. VERY spring like and would be great for easter!!!

Happy eating y’all!

My version of P.f Changs Lettuce wraps

3 tablespoons hoisin sauce

3 tablespoons rice vinegar

2 cloves garlic, minced

salt and pepper

1 lb of chicken or pork(i used pork tenderloin last night cut into very thin strips and then cut those strips in half.. it was sooo good)

2 tablespoons of oil( i used sesame but you can use veg.)

1 pkg of mushrooms sliced

1/3 of a head of cabbage shredded and two carrots shredded (or you can use a pkg. of coleslaw mix. I prefer fresh but it does not matter)

3-4 scallions chopped up

and lettuce

the sauce..

I just mixed up a honey Dijon mustard, siracha sauce, rice vinegar and for a sweetness added a little thai kitchen pineapple and chili sauce… it’s in every grocery store(but it may taste good even with out it) it was just like P.F Changs!!! My hubby was impressed!

 

whisk the hoisin sauce, vinegar, garlic. season the meat of your choice with salt and pepper. Place meat in the mixture and marinate for 10 min.

 

heat oil in a wok (or skillet) over med-high heat Remove the meat from the marinate w/thongs (reserve the left over marinade). Cook until done (about 5 min.) and then move cooked meat to a plate.

 

Place in chopped mushrooms to the skillet with the remaining marinade. cook until golden and then throw in the cabbage/carrots(or cole slaw mix) and cook until wilted… throw in scallions and mix meat back in and walllahhhhh put in lettuce bibs and top with sauce..

It kinda sounds like a lot, but it was so quick and easy! Took less than 30 min. and was soooooooooo good! Let me know how you like it if you make it!