Friday, February 11, 2011

Happy 11th/5th anniversary!

Baked Shrimp Scampi, Parmesan Green Beans, Ribeye with wild brown rice.
Sauteed Fresh Green Beans with Parmesan cheese

Perefectly Grilled Ribeye
Prepping the shrimp
Lining up the shrimp and adding the topping!

My husband and I recently celebrated our 11th Anniversary...5th year marriage. This was the dinner I made for our quiet evening at home. Well as quiet as could be expected with a 4 yr old and a 1 yr old :)
 Baked Shrimp Scampi, Fresh Parmesan Green Beans, and Ribeye with Brown Wild Rice

From Ina Garten


  • 2 pounds (12 to 15 per pound) shrimp in the shell
  • 3 tablespoons good olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons dry white wine
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 4 teaspoons minced garlic (4 cloves)
  • 1/4 cup minced shallots
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 extra-large egg yolk
  • 2/3 cup panko (Japanese dried bread flakes)
  • Lemon wedges, for serving


Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Peel, devein, and butterfly the shrimp, leaving the tails on. Place the shrimp in a mixing bowl and toss gently with the olive oil, wine, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Allow to sit at room temperature while you make the butter and garlic mixture.

In a small bowl, mash the softened butter with the garlic, shallots, parsley, rosemary, red pepper flakes, lemon zest, lemon juice, egg yolk, panko, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper until combined.

Starting from the outer edge of a 14-inch oval gratin dish, arrange the shrimp in a single layer cut side down with the tails curling up and towards the center of the dish. Pour the remaining marinade over the shrimp. Spread the butter mixture evenly over the shrimp. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until hot and bubbly. If you like the top browned, place under a broiler for 1 minute. Serve with lemon wedges.

RIBEYE Steaks with brown wild rice
I seasoned the ribeyes, salt, pepper, 2 shakes on each worshteshire sauce. Let steaks get to room temp. Then cook to your liking :)
Let steaks rest then slice.
Serve with your choice of rice or other sides.

Easiest chicken parmesan you will ever make :)

Easiest Chicken Parmesan EVER!
Here is my version of Chicken Parmesan...I find it to be very simple and extremely flavorful!
Chicken breasts
seasoned bread crumbs
italian dressing (any brand will work)
Fresh Mozzarella
Fresh Parmesan

Preheat oven 375
1. Allow chicken to marinate. You can place chicken into a container with dressing that covers the top of the chicken. You can marinate for an hour or overnight.
2. Coat chicken in seasoned bread crumbs.
3. Saute Chicken with 4 tsps  of EVOO in a frying pan. Only for 3 minutes on each side. Just to brown, not to cook fully.
4.  Place chicken on a sheet pan (if your frying pan cannot stand the heat of the oven) cook in oven for 15 minutes. Remove chicken from oven.
5. Place a few tbs of fresh marinara on chicken, then add the Fresh cheeses on top of the chicken  and place back into the oven until cheese are bubbly and melted.

Fresh Marinara ( I make my is one that I like)


  • 1 tablespoon good olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped yellow onion (1 onion)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup good red wine, such as Chianti
  • 1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, or plum tomatoes in puree, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Heat the olive oil in a large (12-inch) skillet. Add the onion and saute over medium heat until translucent, 5 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the wine and cook on high heat, scraping up all the brown bits in the pan, until almost all the liquid evaporates, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, parsley, salt, and pepper. Cover, and simmer on the lowest heat for 15 minutes.

Fresh Mozzarella and Fresh Parmesan!
Marinated Chicken, seasoned bread crumbs, fresh cheese.

Chicken Parmesan, Salad, and Foccacia bread

Shrimp 'n grits y'all!

Shrimp and Grits! YUM
(sorry for the shadowed pic...flash was not on :()
After a recent trip to Savannah I have been craving GOOD shrimp and grits! Savannah is known for shrimp and grits with greens. Here is a recipe I found that definately hit the spot!

From William Sonoma Catalog:
1 1/2 lbs. large shrimp (peeled and deveined)
salt and fresh pepper to taste
2 tbs all purpose flour
1/2 cup diced red peppers
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup of sliced green onions (white and green parts)
2 plum tomatoes, diced
1/3 cup of chicken stock
4 tsp of lemon juice 
1 1/2 tsp tabasco sauce

*serve with grits with cheese

Pat shrimp dry. Put in shallow bowl, season with salt and pepper and toss with flour to coat evenly. In fry pan over medium-high heat, warm tbsp of bacon fat. Working in batches, brown shrimp until almost cooked through, about 2 minutes, transfer to plate.

Return pan to medium-high heat; warm 2 tbs bacon fat. Add bell pepper, garlic, salt, pepper;cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 5-7 minutes. Add shrimp and accumulated juices, bacon, green onions, tomatoes, stock, lemon juice and tabasco. Cook, stirring frequently, until shrimp are opaque, 2-3 minutes.

Divide grits amon 6 bowls; top with shrimp mixture. Serve immediately. Serves 6.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Happy early BDAY to me:)

   As any chef or home cook know LeuCreuset is a dream come true! I am fortunate enough to own many pieces. However there is always a new fun piece you would like to have...isn't there? Lately I have been in the need for a LARGE skillet/frying pan. My husband and I went out to Leu Creuset and and found the perfect one! (you will see it in use in the pictures below). Needless to say while we were there I came across another wish list gratin dishes, in flame, that match my other pieces...I got 2 :) (also pictured below).
       Now that I had my new pieces I was ready for our next meal. Ina Garten, aka Barefoot Contessa, recently made an HERBED EGG looked amazing!(and she used mini gratin pans) Since I just recieved these I needed to put them to use! Check it out...


  • 1/4 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated Parmesan
  • 6 extra-large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Toasted French bread or brioche, for serving


1.Preheat the broiler for 5 minutes and place the oven rack 6 inches below the heat.

2.Combine the garlic, thyme, rosemary, parsley, and Parmesan and set aside. Carefully crack 3 eggs into each of 2 small bowls or teacups (you won't be baking them in these) without breaking the yolks. (It's very important to have all the eggs ready to go before you start cooking.)

3.Place 2 individual gratin dishes on a baking sheet. Place 1 tablespoon of cream and 1/2 tablespoon of butter in each dish and place under the broiler for about 3 minutes, until hot and bubbly.
4.Quickly, but carefully, pour 3 eggs into each gratin dish and sprinkle evenly with the herb mixture, then sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Place back under the broiler for 5 to 6 minutes, until the whites of the eggs are almost cooked. (Rotate the baking sheet once if they aren't cooking evenly.)
5.The eggs will continue to cook after you take them out of the oven. Allow to set for 60 seconds and serve hot with toasted bread.
I served sauteed spinach and rosemary potatoes.
1 clove of garlic
2 tsp of olive oil
salt and pepper
Place olive oil, chopped garlic, in skillet, let it saute for a few minutes. Then place spinach and allow to wilt...toss and serve...season.
Potatoes any you would like
Olive oil
Fresh Rosemary
2 garlic cloves
salt and pepper
Dice potatoes. Place olive oil, garlic, and entire sprigs of rosemary into the olive oil. Allow to marinate together...add potatoes on top...allow to crisp...then place entire pan into the oven @350 and allow to cook for 15 minutes.

Do you remember me?

Hey everyone! No I haven't forgot about you :) My camera wasn't working...couldn't upload pics..then they deleted...crazy week at school, so now things are fixed and we are back into business! Here are two meals I made this past week. ENJOY! Tomorrow night is girls night. This is a monthly get together with some of the best ladies I know. I will post what I am making for our potluck later on :)

Country Chicken Medley is a dish that my mother has made for years! People crave it. It is not very hard to make but holds a lot of flavor. I believe she originally got the recipe from a LAND O LAKES wrapper or something? then simply added her twist. 


4 Chicken Breasts
2 cans of kernel corn
2 tbsp. dried basil
2 sticks of butter
4 large baking potatoes
2 cups of seasoned bread crumbs
Salt and pepper to taste

PREHEAT oven to 325

1. Take 13X9 casserole dish and spray dish with cooking spray.
2. Slice potatoes in 1 inch slices...layer in the bottom of the dish.
3. Open cans of corn and top potatoes with it. Add salt and pepper to    corn/potato mixture.
4. Cut Breasts of chicken into two pieces..directly down the middle.(2 large chunks, if you will)
5. Place butter in a microwaveable dish and heat....let it cool to room temperature.
6. Take Chicken and place in the melted butter (after the butter has cooled)
7. Place breadcrumbs in a pie dish and bread the chicken
8. Place breaded chicken on top of the corn/potato mixture. 
 9. Season with salt pepper and sprinkle with dried basil.
10. Cover dish with foil.
 11. Bake at 325 for 90 minutes...the last ten minutes take foil off and continue cooking.
** For those of you who have had might taste a little different because I use Jacque seasoning...this is a family seasoning that is made...I don't even have the recipe to that !**  This version is still very delicious :)

Monday, January 3, 2011

EASY Chicken Bake...and I mean EASY...

                      I was looking for something simple for dinner this evening, when I came a across this...I have made it before and it just doesn't get old.  Usually when I make this, it is because it reminds me of Thanksgiving in a casserole! Who doesn't LOVE Thanksgiving? Give it a try!

1 pkg. STOVE TOP cornbread muffin mix
1- 1/2 lb. of boneless chicken breasts (cut into 1 inch pieces)
1 can of cream of chicken soup
1/3c. of sour cream
1 bag of frozen mixed vegetables ( I substitute and use Fresh)

1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Prepare stuffing mix as directed on package; set aside.
2. Mix chicken, soup, sour cream, and vegetables in a 13x9 backing dish; top with the stuffing.
3. Bake 30 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.

This makes 6 servings.

Leeky Linguine with Shrimp

Leeky Linguine with Shrimp 
Recipe by Rachael Ray
                   I came across this recipe in a EVERYDAY Rachael Ray magazine. I thought hmmm..leeks with linguine...why not? So I cut out the recipe and set in aside, with the other thousand recipes I have cut and placed to one day be made. Last weekend I was at the farmer's market and came across leeks.  My mind went directly back to this recipe and said we will be having this for dinner this week!
                  The recipe is very simple for all of those culinary virgins out there...this is a friendly one :)
This was last nights dinner...

1 pound large shrimp, shelled and deveined
1/4c. extra-virgin olive oil
1 tbsp. grated lemon peel
2 cloves of garlic, grated or finely chopped
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper
salt and black pepper
1 pound of fresh linguine
4 leeks-trimmed, halved lengthwise, thinly sliced crosswise and washed
**(the easiest way to wash leeks: cut leeks like above...then place them in a bowl with cold water...swish them around and allow the sand and dirt to fall to the bottom...then scoop up the leeks that are floating on the water)
1/2c. dry white wine
1/3c. finely chopped flatleaf parsley

1. In a bowl, toss the shrimp with 2 tbsp EVOO, the lemon peel, garlic and crushed red pepper, season with salt and black pepper.
2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt it, add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 5 minutes.
3.While the pasta is working in a large skillet, heat the remaining 2 tbsps of EVOO, 2 turns of the pan, over medium-high heat. Add the leeks, season with salt and black pepper and cook until wilted, about 5 minutes. 

4.Push the leeks to the side of the pan, add the shrimp to the skillet and cook until pink and firm. Pour in wine and stir, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.

5.Add the pasta to the skillet"season with salt and black pepper. Add the parsley and toss.


Saturday, January 1, 2011's what's for dinner...

Yesterday we did some grocery shopping and I definately was wanting steak for dinner! Therefore for tonight's dinner we had Ribeyes with scalloped potatoes and sauteed green beans.

RIBEYE: I crushed fresh peppercorns, sea salt, and 2 tsp of worsetshire sauce. Then I smothered the steaks with the mixture.

Sauteed Green beans: 
1/2 an onion
1 lb. of fresh green beans
salt and pepper
1 tsp. of soy sauce

1.I took fresh green beans, picked the ends off. 
2. Slice onion, place in saute pan, pour soysauce..allow to carmelize.
3. Add green beans, allow to cook through.
4. Add salt and pepper to taste.


It's a little bit a chicken fried...

Sometimes you just need that Chicken Fried!

 Thursday night we had Paula Deen Fried Chicken, Cornbread Casserole, and a Baked Potatoe.

Here is Paula's Chicken recipe: 
* I and cajun seasoning to the flour to give it a kick


  • 1 (3-pound) chicken, washed and cut into 8 serving pieces
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 cups all-purpose or self-rising flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • Peanut oil, for frying


Liberally sprinkle each piece of chicken with salt and pepper several hours before cooking. Place it in a dish, covered with plastic wrap, in the refrigerator.

Place the flour in a plastic kitchen storage bag. When ready to cook, beat the eggs with the milk. Dip the chicken pieces into the egg mixture, then place each piece in the bag. Shake until chicken is coated. Set the floured chicken on a plate while you heat the oil. Pour enough oil into a cast iron skillet to come only about halfway up the sides of the pan. This is important, as the oil rises when each piece of chicken is added.

Turn the heat to medium high; test by adding a drop of water to the oil. If it sizzles, the oil is ready; this takes about 4 to 5 minutes. Place about 4 pieces of chicken into the hot oil. Allow to cook on the first side about 8 minutes, and on the second about 6 minutes, until brown and crispy. Pieces with large bones, the legs and thighs, may need an additional minute per side to get completely done. Remove the chicken from the oil and drain well on brown paper bags. Cook the second batch of chicken.

Wrap tightly in aluminum foil to keep warm or place in aluminum pans with parchment paper between layers of chicken.

Cook's Note: Be careful not to let the oil spill out while the chicken is frying; it can cause serious burns or cause a grease fire if the grease lands on a gas flame or electric cooktop.

INGREDIENTS:  1 box of Jiffy corn muffin mix
                               1 can of creamed corn
                               1 can of corn
                               1 small container of sour cream
                               1/4c. of sharp cheddar cheese


1. Take all items and mix in bowl.
2. Pour mixture in a square sized baking dish (such as a pyrex or a brownie pan)
3. Bake at 425 for 45 minutes (covered)
4. Remove cover and make an additional 10 minutes.