Archive for the 'Food and Recipes' Category

Happy Memorial Day + A Recipe

Hope you’re all enjoying your day off! We celebrated last night by grilling out with friends – burgers, hot dogs, grilled salmon and the most amazing grilled corn a girl could ask for. So good, in fact, I thought I’d share my secret. I’m generous like that.

Grilled corn with cilantro lime butter

Peel back the corn husks and discard the silks. Tie the husks with kitchen string or, if you’re like me and don’t have kitchen string, tear off a longer husk and use it. This creates a sort of handle for your corn.

In a blender or food processor, combine 1 stick butter, a handful of fresh cilantro, zest from 1 lime and juice from 1/2 a lime. 

Brush the corn cobs with butter, grill over medium heat for 8-10 minutes, or until slightly charred and bright yellow.

Remove from heat, brush with cilantro lime butter again, sprinkle with salt and parmesan, serve immediately.


Bacon Vegetable Quiche

Aaron’s been hinting that he’d like me to make a quiche for weeks, and finally finding a Sunday morning when I wasn’t rushing out to do yard work, I was able to make one this weekend. And it turned out SUPER DELISH. So I thought I’d share the recipe!

Bacon Vegetable Quiche


1 9-inch pie crust

6 slices bacon

1/3 large onion

1/2 large zucchini

6-8 stalks asparagus

6 oz package spinach

3 eggs

1 1/3 cup milk

1 cup shredded mozzarella

1/2 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese

Salt, pepper, Cavender’s seasoning to taste

small handful grape tomatoes, halved (optional)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line pie plate with crust. This is a good recipe for pie crust or you can be like me and use a refrigerated crust because, c’mon, it’s 10:00 a.m. on a Sunday morning. Bake for 5-7 minutes until light golden brown. If you pull out the crust and it’s ballooned on the bottom, just poke it with a fork.

Reduce heat to 325 degrees. In a large skillet, cook the bacon, then transfer to a plate with paper towels to drain. While the bacon is cooking, chop your onion, zucchini and asparagus. For the zucchini, I sliced it very thin then halved the pieces. When you’ve removed the bacon from the skillet, add the vegetables to the grease and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. If you keep a jar of bacon grease in your refrigerator (ahem) and would like to add a bit more, feel free. When the vegetables are tender, add the spinach and toss until it’s wilted. The spinach should soak up any extra moisture in the skillet. If not, drain the liquid.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs, add the milk, crumble the bacon and add it, stir in the vegetables and season with salt and pepper (and Cavender’s if you’re like me and add it to everything). Stir in cheeses until just combined then pour into the prepared pie crust. I topped the quiche with the halved tomatoes and even though we aren’t big tomato people, it turned out really well.

Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour or until set. Remove from oven and let cool for at least 20 minutes before cutting. Thank me later.

{It’s a safe bet that you could substitute mushrooms, squash, bell peppers or just about anything else. I just used the vegetables I had on hand. Same goes for cheese – this would probably be amazing with Gruyere.}

My Miniature Obsession with Miniature Foods

Two things you should know about me:

1. Every time I eat something delicious, be it at home, a restaurant or a party, I immediately begin to think of ways to turn said delicious food into an adorable, bite-sized party food.

2. I love Southern foods.

Combining #1 and #2 means miniature Southern foods make my little heart go pitter patter as seen here, when I threw a Southern brunch for a friend. That said, I squealed with joy when I came across an entire SPREAD on miniature party foods in this month’s issue of Southern Living.

Cracker Spoons with Creamy Pimiento Cheese

Shrimp Boil Skewers

Fried Green Tomato Sliders

Buttermilk Chicken and Waffles (I love you, Southern Living, but I totally did this first.)

Chicken Salad Tarts

Mint Julep Gelees

Mini Berry Cobblers

Those miniature skillets KILL me. I have to get some to make individual servings of my Triple Berry Bourbon pie. What’s your favorite Southern food?

Happy Thanksgiving + A Gilded-Giving Tablescape

Oh my, Thanksgiving snuck up on me. I’d planned to post this earlier in the week, but alas! It’s 8:30 the night before Thanksgiving and here I am. C’est la vie!

Saturday night, we had a small group of friends over for a Thanksgiving-themed dinner party. It was so much fun to bust the leaves out for my dining table and make recipes that you’ve always wanted to try but can’t on the actual holiday without complaints from your great Uncle Ed.

Know what I mean?

Anyway, I used my pottery-esque plates, woven placemats and olive green cloth napkins and accented the earthy colors with gold-speckled votives and gilded table linens. I love mixing rustic and gold elements, so I put this little tablescape together:

{clockwise from top: hydrangeas, wishbone, serving bowl, woven charger, dinner and dessert plates, votives, napkin rings, olive napkin, glassware}

As for what I cooked – a lot of the recipes I used came from Pinterest!

Apple-Bourbon Turkey and Gravy – Aaron made the turkey and it was amazing! The apple-bourbon marinade smelled like heaven!

Martha Stewart’s Macaroni and Cheese. This recipe is killer. I’m making it again for family festivities tomorrow. White sharp cheddar and gruyere with torn bread cubes on top? Martha wins, as usual.

Apple Pecan Cornbread Dressing – I had to try this recipe after having it at a friend’s house last year. Her’s was so delicious. While it was still good, mine turned out a little dry and probably could have used more apple juice.

For dessert – s’mores pie! The pie “crust” was closer to cookie dough and needed significantly more flour than the recipe called for, but other than that – it’s marshmallow creme and Hershey’s bars between graham cracker pie crust. You can’t go wrong.

There was much more, but we had pretty much demolished it before I even remembered I should take photos.

And that, my friends, is what Thanksgiving is allllllllllllllll about.

Have a good one!


Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

I came home from work a bit early today because I have a few friends in town for the weekend. In honor of their arrival, I made some pumpkin whoopie pies.

They even got the Nom of Approval from Aaron “I hate all things pumpkin” Nichols.

I used this recipe from Camille Styles and didn’t really make any changes save for an extra sprinkle of pumpkin pie spice!

What? You don’t style your homemade baked goods on a pretty platter with fresh flowers then photograph them? Shame on you.

Recipe Recommendation : Pioneer Woman’s Big Steak Salad

I’ve decided to occasionally recommend recipes that Aaron and I try. About 99% of the recipes I make come from the internet somewhere, and since I’m always falling down on my blogger job of taking pictures while I cook, I figure I should just post a link tot the original recipe here. So I’m gonna do that sometimes. Ok? Cool.

Tonight’s recommended recipe: The Pioneer Woman’s Big Steak Salad

Oh. Em. Ree.

I could seriously eat this every day, and I’m not a steak person. Never have been. My dad was always appalled when he’d grill steak, and as a kid, I’d have to smother it in ketchup to eat it. But the marinade that Ree’s recipe calls for makes this steak sooooo delicious. I added a little extra lime juice and sriracha and let the steaks marinate overnight, so they’d been in the marinade about 24 hours when Aaron threw them on the grill. Also, the dressing is so good I want to keep it in my fridge to put on salads all the time.

Also, we’re not bleu cheese people, so I sprinkled some shredded monterey jack on top of the salad because it’s all we had in the fridge. It wasn’t bad, but you also couldn’t really taste it, so next time, I’ll save myself the calories and not use a cheese at all. Trust me – it doesn’t need it.

My only other note is that I was lazy and used French’s french fried onions instead of frying my own. Oh, and despite what the recipe says: DON’T PUT YOUR PECANS ON WAX PAPER. It will totally stick and you will desperately pick out the pecans for way longer than you’d like to admit.

We’re medium-well people, so I’m a little weirded out by these photos. A band-aid and a good vet and this cow would be good as new. Do you eat steak? And if so, are you part wolf like Ree?

{all images via the Pioneer Woman}

I was going to do stuff tonight.

When I got home from work today (after stopping by the store to get paint samples!!!), I had big plans to get started on the hall bathroom, do some cleaning and finish up some laundry. After I “whipped up” enchiladas for the first time.

I’ve never made enchiladas, and I did what I normally do where I scan a recipe, make sure I have everything that’s necessary for the recipe and don’t pay attention to how much time it takes to actually cook.

Fast forward two and a half hours and here we are. Just sitting down to eat enchiladas. But it’s worth the wait because these enchiladas are DOPE.

I just got off the phone with my friend Lyddy who I consider a connoisseur of Mexican food. She reminded me that they sell enchiladas “pre-made” at Mexican restaurants everywhere. But Aaron shook his head fiercely in protestation, proclaiming my enchiladas better than even the great, almighty Senor Tequila.

I used the chicken enchilada recipe from Annie’s Eats and stuck to it pretty closely. I highly recommend Annie’s blog. I’ve made a million of her recipes and they’ve all become staples. Most of them are boyfriend and family friendly, too. Her panko-crusted salmon is a weekly meal for us these days because it’s super quick and easy.

As for the enchiladas, I’m proclaiming these bad boys as “weekend” or “special occasion” foods only. I think I just started planning my next Mexican fiesta house party. You bring the ‘ritas. See you there.

Sunday brunch.

This weekend, Aaron and I are celebrating two years of courtship. Hawt. We had date night last night, then this morning, I got up and made an asparagus tart. It was DELISH.

I followed this recipe, except there were only two of us and I only had  a half sheet of puff pastry, so I cut everything down a bit. It turned out perfectly.


pickled tink!

I’m too excited about my weekend pickling expedition to worry that my heading sounds slightly pervy!

You read that right. I finally gave pickling a shot. And to be perfectly honest, I’ve got high hopes for the outcome. I say this, of course, because while my pickles and okra look amazing, I have to wait a few days to try the pickles and two weeks to try the okra!

I used this recipe for bread and butter pickles, a longtime favorite of mine because my grandmother had a bowl of them out at every meal when I was a kid. The spicy pickled okra recipe came from here.

My only regrets, in retrospect, are not packing the pickles and okra tightly enough into the jars. As it was my first try, I only wanted to make one jar of each, but when buying the cucumbers and okra, I was unsure how much would fill a jar. Now I know. You see in the photo above that there ended up being plenty of extra room for more goods.

If you’re interested in making your own, I followed the Mommy’s Kitchen and recipes pretty closely, so I won’t repost them here. But I was able to take a few photos of the process that I thought I’d share.

I started by sterilizing my jars. Because my kitchen is so small, I don’t have room for a bigger saucepan than this little one. So yeah…I sterilized those puppies one at a time.

Including the jar tops!


And while this was a tiring process for me, Lula just couldn’t last a moment longer:


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Sundry Mumsy