Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Orzo Salad

This is a great summer salad. Very light, fresh and healthy!

3 cups cooked orzo
1 1/2 cup corn, can use canned but I used fresh corn, cut off the cob
Cherry tomatoes, cut in half (can also use sun dried tomatoes)
lemon juice of 1 lemon
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (2 TBS)
salt and pepper to taste

*you can also add grilled chicken*

Put on your favorite Hot Mama Apron, mix together all ingredients and chill at least one hour before serving! Yum!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Tuna Casserole

This is an EASY , inexpensive, family favorite. Some of you might think it is a little "white trash" but at my house, we think it is delicious!

2 boxes Kraft mac and cheese (the cheap kind with the powdered cheese)
1 12oz can Bumble Bee solid white tuna
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 1/2 cup frozen peas
Lays potato chips
Grated Cheddar Cheese

Put on Your favorite Hot Mama Apron. Prepare Mac and Cheese according to directions on the box. Mix in soup, peas, and tuna. Spread into a greased casserole dish, top with grated cheddar and crushed Lays. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Serves 6. My hubby likes to pour Franks Hot Wing Sauce on his...makes it even more trashy and tasty too!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Still Loving The Joy of Cooking!

Yep! I am going on my second week of cooking exclusively with recipes from The Joy of Cooking and I have not even scratched the surface! The book is so complete and the recipes and ideas are never ending. Last night we grilled Lamb Patties, served them over toasted garlic Naan/Pita bread and topped them off with a dollop of Tzatziki Sauce. It was an amazing blend of flavors and not very hard to make!

Ethan's Lamb Patties
1 pound ground lamb
Zest of 1/2 lemon
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 teaspoons sherry
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 1/2 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon dried Thyme
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 dashes hot red pepper sauce

Shape the mixture into two inch patties. Fry in skillet or on the grill until done. If you are grilling outside, you should wear a Jen Rosie Designs Chef Hat. Serve patties over toasted Naan bread (can also use pita bread). We put some garlic butter on the bread to give it just a little more YUM! Top with a dollop of Tzatziki sauce (recipe below).

Tzatziki Sauce
2 8oz containers plain yogurt (we use greek yogurt).
2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded and diced
2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
1/2 lemon juiced
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon chopped, fresh dill
3 cloves garlic

Put on your favorite Hot Mama Apron. Blend in food processor until well blended. Chill at least 2 hours before serving.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Joy of Cooking

I recently went to visit my husband's Aunt, Annette Harkey. She lives in Crystal City, Texas, is 80 years old, majored in home economics, and makes Martha Stewart look like an amateur. When I visit Annette, we discuss favorite recipes, gardening tips, grocery shopping and the like. Last Saturday she showed me how to make a pie crust from scratch using Crisco, flour, and water. She re-united me with her favorite cookbook and now mine, The Joy of Cooking. It is the most complete cookbook I own; it not only has delicious, easy to follow recipes, but it also has so many good ideas, instructions, and general cooking information. It is truly a MUST HAVE in all kitchens. Below is a scrumptious recipe for meat loaf.

Classic Meat Loaf
12 oz ground chuck
12 oz ground beef round
1 1/2 finely chopped onion
1 cup bread crumbs
2/3 cup ketchup
2/3 cup parsley
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp ground thyme
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Put on your favorite Hot Mama Apron. Knead the mixture with your hands until everything is well blended. Do not over mix.
Fill a loaf pan with the meat mixture and bake at 350 until the meat is firm to the touch and has shrunk from the sides of the pan. (about and hour and 15 minutes)

**to make individual meatloafs, place meat mixture into nonstick muffin tins and bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes. You can freeze left over servings for a later date. Flash freeze them on a cookie sheet, then place them in a ziploc and return them to the freezer. This way they will not stick together.

**For a little spice add 2 TBS dijon mustard


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Paula’s Perfect Mother’s Day Table

Paula’s Perfect Mother’s Day Table

By Brandon Branch, Design Director for Paula Deen Enterprises

I have learned that a lady looks her most gorgeous in subtle pink lighting. Pink is such a soothing yet playful color. So, setting a Mother’s Day table I knew I wanted to put on the pink! An intimate spot in the side garden of Paula’s house with all the snap dragons and foxgloves in bloom was the perfect place to do my own version of a “pretty in pink” table fit for a queen.

Think outside the dining room when you are decorating a table for a formal or informal meal. Over the years, I have set tables in bedrooms, cornfields, garages, and even in one master bathroom suite (don’t ask). This Mother’s Day luncheon table was no exception. As May is such a beautiful month in Savannah with all our spring flowers in full loom, the north garden at Paula’s home offered the perfect perch. A short distance from the chicken coop with a beautiful view of the river and smack in the middle of a cutting garden! What more could a girl or his mother ask for!

Here’s what I used:

imageTable and Tablecloth: The table is an old farmhouse table Paula keeps on hand for extra seating. The wood is so beautiful, I didn’t want to cover it all up, so I just added a simple square tablecloth in the center. Adorned with small pink flowers and green leaves, it is a cheeky vintage textile from the 1950’s and makes for such a sweet and fresh layer.
imageChina, Flatware and Glassware: Keeping with the pink theme, I used antique Haviland chargers and topped them with a mix and match group of gold rimmed antique Limoges floral dinner and salad plates. The glasses I’m obsessed with. They were borrowed from my friend, Brenda Anderson. I’ve been trying to purchase them from her for two years now and she just won’t let them go! The good thing is she is happy to let me borrow them anytime I want. I knew they would be perfect here as they are a simple 1950’s pink iced tea glass. I filled them with strawberry infused water to go along with the Sassy Strawberry Pie Paula made. I used Paula’s own good silver (who says you can’t take the good silver outside?) and the cutest thing of all was the napkin rings around a simple white linen napkin! It was such a fun craft to do and the best thing is I’m giving a set of six to my mom as a Mother’s Day gift. I used vintage buttons, but you could use new. Here’s how to make your own Mother’s Day Button Crafts.
imageCenterpiece: Paula loves cabbage roses, so I knew I wanted to use those. I stopped by the florist for a large bunch that were bright pink in color. The rest of the arrangement was cut from Paula’s garden. The vase I chose was a white antique English ironstone soup tureen. I filled it with water soaked florist’s oasis and just started layering in the bright pink cabbage roses, white garden roses and English Ivy. A perfect centerpiece for mom!
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