Sunday, July 24, 2011

Goat Cheese Crostini with Minted Grapes

Ok - so I've gotten onto Mom for doing this post-before-you've-tried-to-make-it thing, but as I was perusing old magazines this lazy Sunday I found this recipe.  And since mint is my new cilantro (but let's be honest, nothing can ever top cilantro), this will be next in my grocery cart!!! Reminds me of an appetizer with goat cheese and figs I had at my friend's house last year.  From November 2010 Traditional Home, here you have it.

Broiled Goat Cheese Crostini with Minted Grapes
. 12 (1/4 inch thick) diagonally sliced whole grain baguette
. 2 tablespoons olive oil
. 2 teaspoons minced garlic
. Salt and ground black pepper
. 4 ounces goat cheese (chevre) or other soft, spreadable goat cheese
. 1 teaspoon olive oil
. 2 teaspoons minced shallot
. 1-1/2 cups red seedless grapes, quartered
. 3 tablespoons green onion, minced
. 1-1/2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh mint
. 1/2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

Preheat oven to 350°F. Arrange bread slices on baking sheet. Combine 2 tablespoons olive oil and the garlic; brush on bread. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Bake 12 minutes or until bread is lightly golden.

Remove toasted bread slices from oven and change oven setting to broil. Spread goat cheese evenly over each crostini and broil 4 to 5 inches from heat 1 to 2 minutes or until goat cheese is melted.

In small skillet, heat 1 teaspoon olive oil over low heat. Add minced shallot and cook until golden brown. Transfer shallot to medium mixing bowl. Add grapes, green onion, mint, and balsamic vinegar. Toss to combine.

Spoon heaping tablespoon of grape mixture over each crostini and serve. Makes 6 servings (12 crostini).

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Bourbon Popsicles

Faster than you can say “cupcake fatigue,” gourmet popsicles have become the latest fully saturated food trend. Now you don’t even have to leave your house to have them. here’s a DIY home brew popsicle recipe with an adult twist.

Don’t be fooled by the Lolita-esque styling of these pops. The crushed peaches in these popsicles were soaked in a bourbon bath to cool you down and chill you out. Mix it with a little simple syrup and some plain yogurt and you’ll have cocktail popsicles in just a few freezing hours.

. . . And of course, lick responsibly.

Bourbon Peaches and Cream Popsicles


Makes 18-22 popsicles

· 1 cup ripe peaches, crushed

· ¼ cup bourbon

· ½ cup simple syrup, cooled (recipe follows)

· 2 cups plain yogurt


1. Peel and slice peaches. Use a potato masher to crush the peaches. Combine crushed peaches and bourbon in a bowl, mix to combine. Add the simple syrup in slowly and taste to preference. Add yogurt to bourbon peach mixture and combine.

2. Score top edge of Dixie cup with scissors for easy peeling. Pour mixture into Dixie cups. Freeze for two hours or until mixture starts to solidify enough to hold a popsicle stick upright. Continue to freeze until mixture is completely frozen into a popsicle, about 5-6 hours. Peel off Dixie cups. Serve.


Simple Syrup

· ¼ cup water

· ¼ sugar


1. Place water and sugar in a sauce pan over medium heat. Heat and stir until sugar dissolves.


A few notes:

· Use the simple syrup sparingly. Taste the mixture as you mix to make sure it’s to your liking. Use more for a sweeter tasting popsicle and less for a popsicle that will have a stronger bourbon flavor.

· If you do not have ripe peaches on hand, use canned peaches in light syrup (make sure to drain before use). If you use canned peaches, bypass the simple syrup.

· To shave some time, use vanilla yogurt instead of plain yogurt to skip the simple syrup portion. Keep in mind this version will be much sweeter as vanilla flavored yogurt is sweetened. If you are using this in combination with canned peaches, rinse the peaches and add 2-3 tablespoons bourbon in addition to the ¼ cup in the recipe. The added tablespoons will offset any sweetness that may overpower the bourbon.

· Of course you can omit the bourbon completely for a simple Peaches and Cream Popsicle~ But How Boring is That !!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Spoon Bread

Oh so good!  Reminds me of potroast in the winter at Mema and Pop-Pop's house!  This is a souffle, southern-style!

2 pints milk (2% or whole)
1 ½ c corn meal (yellow or white)
2 T butter
2 T sugar
2 t salt
6 egg yolks, beaten
6 egg whites, beaten stiff

At 150 degrees, scald milk (right before boiling); gradually add corn meal and cook slowly until thick and smooth, about five minutes, stirring constantly until thick.  Cool slightly and add butter, sugar and salt. Add egg yolks then fold in whites.  Bake in greased baking dish in 325-350 degree oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour. 

Serve immediately with plenty of butter. Serves 8.  Great leftover too with that leftover potroast...

Ethlyn's Green Bean Casserole

MMMMMmmmm.  Not your B-rate generic housewife version.

Italian breadcrumbs
garlic powder
1 can artichoke hearts, drained and quartered
2 cans whole green beans
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
4 oz swiss cheese
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1/2 cup mayo
1 cup sour cream
2-3 green onions, chopped

Butter 9 x 13 dish. Sprinkle with Italian breadcrumbs and garlic powder. Add artichoke hearts to dish. Add both cans whole green beans, drained.

Layer next 1 can diced tomatoes, drained. Then add Swiss cheese and Parmesan. Mix together: ½ c mayo, 1 c sour cream, and small chopped onion. Spread on top and sprinkle with more breadcrumbs. Cook 350° for 30 to 40 minutes.

Kee's Onion Rice

Oh this is so indulgent and heavenly smelling while it cooks!

1 can onion soup
1 c long grain white rice
1 can water
1 small drained can mushrooms
1 stick butter, cut into “pats”

Grease a casserole dish. Mix, cover with foil. Bake for 1 hour at 350°.

Simple Asparagus

Jimmy used to despise asparagus until he realized how good and crunchy it can be!
1 bunch of green thin asparagus
kosher salt
extra virgin olive oil

Cut tough ends off asparagus.

Place asparagus into 9x13" dish. Drizzle olive oil and sprinkle kosher salt. Toss the asparagus around until fully covered. Place in 400 degree oven for 8-10 minutes or until tender but not soft.

Pop-Pop's Okra and Tomatoes

Mema and Pop-Pop had vegetables for every meal, and in fact often just had a huge spread of okra and tomatoes, corn, green beans, black-eyed peas, and buttermilk cornbread!  Well... as simple as this recipe is, I wanted to know exactly how Pop-Pop did it so I could recreate it for Jimmy!

2 medium to small onions, chopped
cooking oil (extra virgin olive oil)
1 package cut frozen okra or fresh if available (about 1 pound)
1 large can diced tomatoes (no flavor added)
freshly ground black pepper
2 small bay leaves

Sauté the onions in as little oil as possible until slightly done. Add frozen okra or the equivalent in fresh okra. Turn heat very low and cook for five minutes after okra has thawed. If fresh okra is used, simply cook five minutes. Add tomatoes, salt and pepper to taste and bay leaves. Cook on top of stove over extremely low heat until thick, about forty-five minutes to an hour. This dish is especially good with pork.

Onion Pudding

Described as a pudding, I would have to insist it is much more of a cassarole... old-fashioned terms should not be phased out though!!  We have this every Thanksgiving Day!
3 lb. yellow onions
1 ½ stick butter
2 eggs
1 cup (or more) Italian breadcrumbs
¾ cup milk

Cut off ends of onions and peel them. Boil onions until tender then drain cut with knife and fork. Pour into bowl, Add remaining ingredients and mix together. Grease a circular casserole dish and pour mixture into it. Add milk until just to top of casserole. Sprinkle breadcrumbs on top. Cook uncovered at 350 for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Maybe longer.
-Aunt Sister (Pop-Pop's sister)

Hashbrown Casserole

Oh my this is quite a favorite of ours for impromptu backyard BBQ's and sports-watching gatherings at a friend's house.  A huge hit always!

1 2-lb bag frozen hash brown potatoes, thawed
½ c butter, melted
1 t salt
½ t black pepper
½ c chopped onion
1 c sour cream
1 can cream of chicken soup
8 oz cheddar cheese, grated

Mix all 8 ingredients in a large bowl. Pour into two 9x9 inch pans or one 13x9 inch pan. If freezing is desired, do so at this point; then add topping before baking.

2 c crushed potato chips or corn flakes
2 T butter, melted

Mix crushed potato chips or corn flakes with butter and spread on top. Bake at 400 for 30 minutes, or until bubbly. If frozen increase baking time to 1 hour at 350. Yield: 12-15 servings.

Crispy Fried Goat Cheese

From TheHungryMouse:

These h’ors d’oeuvres are really easy to throw together on the fly. Basically, you take slices of goat cheese, dip them in beaten egg, then coat them in seasoned panko breadcrumbs, then fry in a little olive oil until crispy.

The outside crust is unbelievably crunchy and flavorful. The inside cheese is warm, creamy, and really smooth. The combination makes for a killer app.

The best part? Because goat cheese is more of a dry, crumbly cheese, it won’t melt and ooze all over as it cooks. (Granted, it’s in and out of the pan in a flash…)

You could also serve it as more of a main dish (say, for brunch), over a salad with some good garlic bread and a glass of red wine.

Tips for slicing goat cheese
To make the cheese a little easier to slice, pop it in the freezer for about 15 minutes before cutting to firm it up.
Use a sharp, non-serrated knife and wipe it down with a paper towel and warm water in between slices.
Try cutting it cheese-shop style, with a piece of clean stainless steel wire—or unflavored dental floss.
This recipe is easy to scale
This is one of those recipes that’s easy to scale up or down, depending on how many people you’re feeding. Once you get the basic technique down, it’s simple.

If you wanted to get really fancy, you could also mold the cheese into different shapes before frying.

Crispy Fried Goat Cheese
16 oz. goat cheese log
1 cup panko bread crumbs
2 tsp. dried parsley
1 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. granulated garlic
1/2 tsp. ground white pepper
pinch of kosher salt
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup of flour
olive oil

Yields about 8 pieces of fried goat cheese, depending on how thick you cut the cheese

Chill your cheese
Grab your goat cheese. I used Laura Chenel goat cheese, which comes from Sonoma County. Pop it in the freezer for about 15 minutes to firm it up so it’s easier to slice.

Prep your dredging station
While your cheese is chilling, put together the stuff you need to bread the cheese. Grab your panko bread crumbs.

Panko are extra crispy Japanese bread crumbs, made from crustless white bread. You can find them at most major grocery stores these days. If you can’t find panko, you can order them online, or substitute regular breadcrumbs in a pinch.

Put the panko in a medium-sized bowl. Add the parsley, thyme, granulated garlic, ground white pepper, and kosher salt.

Stir to combine well.

Crack the eggs in a bowl. Beat to scramble them.  Line a sheet pan or plate with wax or parchment paper.

Put the flour on a plate or in a shallow bowl. Slice & bread the cheese.

Grab your cheese out of the freezer. Slice it into 1/4 – 1/2-inch pieces. Use a sharp knife.  Wipe the knife off with a warm, wet paper towel in between cuts.

Now, your slice may crumble a little. If it does, don’t fret. It’s cheese, after all: Just smoosh it into a rough round shape and keep going.

Put the cheese in the flour. Flip it gently to coat on both sides.  Drop the floured cheese into the beaten egg. Flip it gently to coat with egg on both sides.  Lastly, put it into the seasoned panko breadcrumbs. Flip it to coat on both sides.

Your finished cheese should look like it’s wearing a crunchy little sweater by the time you’re done.

Put it on your lined pan or plate.

Repeat with the rest of the cheese. You could do this maybe an hour ahead of time and keep them in the fridge.

Fry the cheese
(Sigh. Those words just make me happy…) Put a little olive oil in a nonstick pan. Use just enough to coat the bottom of the pan. Set it on the stove over high heat. When the oil shimmers, you’re ready to fry.

Grab one of your slices of breaded goat cheese.  Set the cheese down gently in the hot oil. It should start to bubble around the edges immediately. Repeat with the rest of the cheese. Depending on the size of your pan and how many pieces you’re frying, you might need to fry in batches so you don’t crowd the pan. (A crowded pan means your food will almost steam, instead of fry, and you’ll wind up with soggy cheese….and nobody needs that.)

Keep an eye on your cheese…it cooks fast. When the cheese is brown on the bottom (this will happen very quickly), flip it over carefully with a spatula.

When it’s brown on the second side, remove the cheese from the pan, and transfer to a paper towel or paper bag lined plate. If you’re fying a lot of these little guys, you could try keeping them warm in a super low (like 150 degrees) oven, so the cheese doesn’t melt.

Serve and enjoy!
Transfer the fried goat cheese to a serving platter.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Blue Cheese Dip

This is such an easy hit!

4 oz tub of BC crumbles
8 oz block of cream cheese
1 cup of chunky BC salad dressing ( Maries Premium)
1/2 cup of toasted pecan pieces. (I like to add almost 1 cup)

Mix together and serve in small dish chilled.  So good and simple!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Julia Child's Onion Sandwich

From Once Upon a Plate - I made this last week - delicious!

Julia Child's Onion Sandwich


One English muffin per sandwich, split. I toast them
For each sandwich place one slice of onion on top to match the size of the muffin. I chop up the onion, as finely as my knife aptitude will let me.
Spread mayonnaise on top of the onion slice. I mix the chopped onions with mayonnaise, just enough mayo to make the onions kind of stick together.
If you're using chopped onions w/mayo spoon enough on each muffin half to cover it.
Top onions & mayo with parmesan cheese.
Place sandwiches about 6 inches under preheated broiler until parmesan cheese browns, maybe 5 minutes, but watch very closely, when the cheese starts to brown it goes very quickly!!
I'm sure Julia Child would have advised the Ladies Who Lunch to remove their gloves before eating. I, on the other hand, dig right in!
Posted Monday, August 6, 2007

Port Wine Reduction Sauce

Port Wine Reduction
1/2 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped carrots
2 bay leaves
3 cups port wine
Combine all of the ingredients in a medium-size saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil. Continue to boil the mixture until it thickens and reduces to about 1/2 cup, about 45 minutes.
Strain through a fine-mesh strainer and let cool. Use at room temperature.
Makes 1/2 cup.

Mushroom Bread Pudding With Port Wine Reduction Sauce

Initially brought by the Irvins every year for our Christmas Eve party - now it is a staple we can't do without!

Exotic Mushroom Bread Pudding
Recipe Courtesy of Emeril Lagasse

3 tablespoons butter
3 cups onions, julienned
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 pound assorted exotic mushrooms, such as shiitakes, chanterelles, oysters, etc., wiped clean and julienned
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
5 large eggs
2 cups heavy cream
Dash of hot pepper sauce
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
8 slices white bread, crusts removed, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 4 cups)
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Parsley, garnish

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 2 quart glass rectangular pan with 1 tablespoon of the butter. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the onions. Season with salt, cayenne and black pepper. Cook, stirring, until the onions are soft, about 4 minutes.

Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring, until they are slightly soft, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and cool.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk the eggs until smooth. Add the cream. Season with salt, cayenne, pepper, hot pepper sauce, and Worcestershire sauce. Whisk the mixture until blender.

Add the onion-mushroom mixture and bread crumbs and mix well. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the top with the cheese.

Bake until the pudding is golden brown and bubbly, about 55 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes before serving. To serve, spoon the pudding in the center of each serving plate.

Arrange a few slices of the tenderloin around the pudding. Spoon the Worcestershire sauce over the beef. Garnish with parsley. Serve the Fresh Cranberry Compote on the side.

Polenta With Spinach and Cheese

From Wives with Knives!  Looks so good- I am planning on making it next week!

Polenta with Mushrooms, Spinach and Cheese
Bob's Red Mill Polenta

6 cups water
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 cups Red Mill Corn Grits
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

In a large, deep pan over high heat bring water and sea salt to a boil. Gradually stir in polenta.  Reduce heat and simmer gently, stirring frequently to prevent sticking, until mixture is very thick (about 30  minutes).  Use a long handled wooden spoon because mixture pops and bubbles and can burn the skin.  Stir in butter, more salt if needed and grated cheese.  Serve either hot and creamy right out of the pot or pour into an oiled pan and chill for at least 4 hours.

Polenta Gratin with Mushrooms, Spinach and Cheese

10-12 3-inch polenta slices
2 tablespoons butter
3/4 pound assorted sliced mushrooms
2 cups coarsely chopped spinach leaves
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1 cup Alfredo sauce
3/4 cup fontina cheese, grated

Arrange polenta slices in an oiled baking dish, allowing them to overlap.  Set aside.

Melt butter in a medium skillet.  Over medium-high heat saute mushrooms for about 2 minutes. Add spinach, garlic, salt and basil and continue to cook for another 2 minutes.  Stir in 1 cup Alfredo sauce.  I usually use bottled sauce because there is so little used in this recipe.  If I happen to have homemade  I would use that.  Either one is delicious.

Spoon the Alfredo mixture evenly over the polenta slices.  Top with grated cheese.  Bake for 10-12 minutes in a 400 degree oven until bubbly.

Tomato and Goat Cheese Tart

Tomato and Goat Cheese Tarts
2008, Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics

1 package (17.3 ounces/2 sheets) puff pastry, defrosted
Good olive oil
4 cups thinly sliced yellow onions (2 large onions)
3 large garlic cloves, cut into thin slivers
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons dry white wine
2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme leaves
4 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan, plus 2 ounces shaved with a vegetable peeler
4 ounces garlic-and-herb goat cheese (recommended: Montrachet)
1 large tomato, cut into 4 (1/4-inch-thick) slices
3 tablespoons julienned basil leaves

Unfold a sheet of puff pastry on a lightly floured surface and roll it lightly to an 11 by 11-inch square. Using a 6-inch wide saucer or other round object as a guide, cut 2 circles from the sheet of puff pastry, discarding the scraps. Repeat with the second pastry sheet to make 4 circles in all. Place the pastry circles on 2 sheet pans lined with parchment paper and refrigerate until ready to use.
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium to low heat and add the onions and garlic. Saute for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring frequently, until the onions are limp and there is almost no moisture remaining in the skillet. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, the wine, and thyme and continue to cook for another 10 minutes, until the onions are lightly browned. Remove from the heat.

Using a sharp paring knife, score a 1/4-inch-wide border around each pastry circle. Prick the pastry inside the score lines with the tines of a fork and sprinkle a tablespoon of grated Parmesan on each round, staying inside the scored border.

Place 1/4 of the onion mixture on each circle, again staying within the scored edge. Crumble 1 ounce of goat cheese on top of the onions. Place a slice of tomato in the center of each tart. Brush the tomato lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with basil, salt, and pepper. Finally, scatter 4 or 5 shards of Parmesan on each tart.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the pastry is golden brown. The bottom sheet pan may need an extra few minutes in the oven. Serve hot or warm.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Warm Fudge-Filled Cheesecake

Warm Fudge-Filled Cheesecake – cheesecake and chocolate, what could be better?

Be sure to heat up slices of this in the microwave if you happen to have any left over.

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/3 cup sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon vanilla, divided
2/3 cup chopped pistachios
4 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 (12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate mini-morsels Sweetened whipped cream (optional)
Garnish: chocolate shavings

Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; add 1/3 cup sugar, beating well. Gradually add flour, beating at low speed until blended. Stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla and pistachios. Press into bottom and 1

1/2 inches up sides of a 9-inch spring form pan.

Bake at 350° for 12 to 15 minutes or until golden. Cool on a wire rack.

Beat cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until light and fluffy; gradually add 1 1/2 cups sugar, beating well. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until yellow disappears. Stir in remaining 2 teaspoons vanilla.

(Do not over mix.)

Pour half of batter into crust; sprinkle with chocolate morsels to within

3/4 inch of edge. Pour in remaining batter, starting at outer edge and working toward center. Place cheesecake on a baking sheet.

Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until set. Cool on a wire rack 1 hour. Serve slightly warm with sweetened whipped cream, if desired. Garnish, if desired.

Friday, July 1, 2011

A Very Special Lasagna

This lasagna takes a little extra effort compared to our traditional lasagna - but it is amazing and completely worth it! Plus it is fun to make the bechamel sauce...  I really feel bad I can't remember the source - but Mom probably does and I'll update after I ask her!

A Very Special Lasagna

1 lb lean ground beef
½ cup chopped onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 16-oz cans whole tomatoes, drained
1 ½ teaspoon seasoned salt
2 teaspoon chopped parsley
1 teaspoon basil
½ teaspoon oregano
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ cup butter
4 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk
1 cup chicken stock
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 egg
8 oz ricotta cheese
1 ¾ cups grated Parmesan cheese
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
8 oz mozzarella cheese, sliced
8 oz lasagna noodles (not with the curly edge) – Barilla no bake noodles

Meat sauce: Sauté beef, onion and garlic in olive oil. Add tomatoes, seasoned sallat, parsley, basil, oregano and pepper; simmer 30-40 minutes or until very thick. Skim fat.

Béchamel sauce: melt butter, add flour and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly with a whisk. Slowly add milk and chicken stock; stir until smooth. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Add salt.

Ricotta Filling: Beat egg and add ricotta, ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, nutmeg, and salt. Mix well.

Assembly: Layer in an 13x9x2 inch pan a little meat sauce, noodles, meat sauce, ½ of béchamel, ½ cup Parmesan, ½ of mozzarella, ½ of ricotta filling. Repeat layers, ending with meat sauce. Top with remaining Parmesan and dot with butter. Bake at 400 for 30 minutes. This can also be frozen before baking. Yield 8 servings.

Chicken TortIlla Soup

Chicken, Tortilla and Lime Soup

In this classic soup, called sopa de lima, from Mexico's Yucatan region, the chicken is not cooked directly in the soup broth because it will make it cloudy. Be careful not to add too much chili or the soup may be too fiery for comfort. You want to maintain a good balance between the tartness of the lime and the heat of the chilies. One large avocado, halved, pitted, peeled and diced, makes a soothing garnish to the spicy broth. Although it's not authentic, 1 cup corn kernels may be added to the soup with the tomatoes.

4 quarts chicken stock
Vegetable oil for deep-frying
3 corn tortillas, cut into strips 2 inches long
1 1/4 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 Tbs. olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
2 Tbs. minced garlic
2 to 3 tsp. finely minced jalapeño chili, with or
  without seeds, to taste
1 1/2 cups peeled, seeded and diced tomatoes
  (fresh or canned)
6 Tbs. chopped fresh cilantro
6 Tbs. fresh lime juice
1 1/2 tsp. salt, or to taste
1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
12 paper-thin lime slices, cut into quarters

In a large saucepan over high heat, bring 3 1/2 quarts of the stock to a boil. Reduce the heat so the broth boils gently and boil until reduced by half to about 7 cups, about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a deep-fry pan, pour in vegetable oil to a depth of 2 inches and heat to 375°F on a deep-frying thermometer. Working in batches, drop in the tortilla strips and fry until golden and crisp, about 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the fried tortilla strips to paper towels to drain.

In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the chicken breasts with the remaining 2 cups stock. Bring to a simmer and cook gently until the chicken is opaque throughout when cut with a knife, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and, when cool enough to handle, cut the chicken breasts into bite-size pieces. Set aside. Discard the broth or reserve for another use. If not using immediately, cover and refrigerate.

In a large saucepan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until tender and translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and jalapeño chili and cook for 1 to 2 minutes to soften. Add the reduced broth, increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, add the cooked chicken, tomatoes, cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper, and simmer until the chicken is heated through, about 5 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasonings.

Ladle the soup into warmed bowls. Sprinkle the lime pieces and tortilla strips evenly over the top. Serve immediately.  Serves 6.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Lifestyles Series, Soup for Supper, by Joyce Goldstein (Time-Life Books, 1998).

Greek Panzanella Salad

Good olive oil
1 small French bread or boule, cut into 1-inch cubes (6 cups)
Kosher salt
1 hothouse cucumber, unpeeled, seeded, and sliced 1/4-inch thick
1 red bell pepper, large diced
1 yellow bell pepper, large diced
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 red onion, sliced in half rounds
1/2 pound feta cheese, cut in 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 cup calamata olives, pitted
For the vinaigrette:
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup good red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup good olive oil

Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large saute pan. Add the bread cubes and sprinkle with salt; cook over low to medium heat, tossing frequently, for 5 to 10 minutes, until nicely browned. Add more olive oil as needed.

Place the cucumber, red pepper, yellow pepper, tomatoes and red onion in a large bowl.

For the vinaigrette, whisk together the garlic, oregano, mustard, vinegar, 1 teaspoon salt and the pepper in a small bowl. While still whisking, add the olive oil and make an emulsion. Pour the vinaigrette over the vegetables. Add the feta, olives and bread cubes and mix together lightly. Set aside for 30 minutes for the flavors to blend. Serve at room temperature.

Hopkins Boarding House Squash Casserole

Hopkins Boarding House Squash Casserole
Pensacola Junior League Some Like It South

3 pounds yellow squash
½ cup chopped onion
½ cup butter
2 eggs, beaten
¾ cup crushed Saltines
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper

Wash and trim squash and boil in salted water until tender; then drain and mash.  Sauté onions in butter and add to squash mixture.  Beat eggs and add to squash along with crushed Saltines.  Add salt and pepper.  Mix well and put into buttered 2-quart casserole.  Bake at 325° for 20 minutes.

Mema's Thanksgiving Cranberry Salad

1 17oz. can jellied cranberry sauce
1/2 cup Red Wine
1 package raspberry jello
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped pecans

Place cranberry sauce in saucepan and crush with a fork.
Add wine and heat to simmering. Remove from heat and add
Jello. Stir till dissolved. Add lemon juice,salt celery
And pecans. Pour into molds or 13 x 9 pan.

Penne with Cream Sauce

Penne in Cream Sauce with Sausage
(Penne in Salsa di Crema con Salsiccia)


1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb Hot Italian sausage, casings removed
2/3 cup dry white wine
One 14 and 1/2-ounce can diced peeled tomatoes with juices
1 cup whipping cream
6 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley

1 lb Penne pasta
1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano cheese


Melt butter with olive oil in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and saute until golden brown and tender, about 7 minutes. Add sausage and saute until golden brown and cooked through, breaking up with back of spoon, about 7 minutes.

Drain any excess drippings from skillet. Add wine to skillet and boil until almost all liquid evaporates, about 2 minutes. Add tomatoes with juices and simmer 3 minutes. Add cream and simmer until sauce thickens slightly, about 5 minutes.

Stir in 4 tablespoons parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove from heat.

(Sauce can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until 'al dente'.

Drain pasta; transfer to large pot
Bring sauce to simmer. Pour sauce over pasta.

Add 3/4 cup cheese and toss to coat.

Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup cheese and 2 tablespoons parsley. Serves 6.

That's it!

Chicken or Pork Marinade

1/4 cup soy sauce
2 Tablespoons lemon Juice
3 Tablespoons oil
3 Tablespoons white wine
Garlic powder
Rosemary and Thyme

Ethlyn's Red Meat Marinde

12oz. Soy Sauce
6oz. Red Wine Vinegar
1 med. Onion chopped
1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 teaspoon Oregano
1 teaspoon Basil
1 teaspoon Thyme
1 stick butter ~ melted

May be halved.  Absolutely delicious!

Ethlyn Caldwell

Fish Marianade

1/3 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup lime juice
Garlic powder
2 teaspoons Dijon Mustard
1/2 cup olive oil

Mix Together place fish in plastic bag~ pour marinade over fish.

Vidalia Onion Dip

Another of our family favorites!  Great with fritos scoops..

1 large vidalia onion - coarsely chopped
1 cup mayo
1 cup swiss cheese (or more)
lemon juice

Mix all ingredients and cook in a 350 degrees oven for about 25 minutes or until brown and bubbly.