Sunday, June 10, 2018

Fresh Fruit Tart

Recipe Courtesy of Paula Deen. Often her stuff is too sweet, but this was just right and got lots of good comments. 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
For the crust: In a food processor, combine the confectioners' sugar, flour, and butter, and process until the mixture forms a ball. With your fingers, press the dough into a 12-inch tart pan with a removable bottom, taking care to push the crust into the indentations in the sides. Pat until the crust is even. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until very lightly browned. Set aside to cool.
For the filling and topping: Beat the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla together until smooth. Spread over the cooled crust. Cut the strawberries into 1/4-inch slices and arrange around the edge of the crust. For the next circle, use kiwi slices. Add another circle of strawberries, filling in any spaces with blueberries. Cluster the raspberries in the center of the tart.
For the glaze: Combine the limeade, cornstarch, lime juice, and sugar in a small saucepan and cook over medium heat until clear and thick, about 2 minutes. Let cool. With a pastry brush, glaze the entire tart. You will not use all of the glaze.
Keep the tart in the refrigerator. Remove about 15 minutes before serving. Slice into 8 wedges and serve with a dollop of whipped cream.

Beef Tenderloin Crostini with Whipped Goat Cheese and Pesto

This was amazing. I made this for a fancy party and will make this anytime I need a fancier appetizer. So good. What made this even simpler was that I bought a bag of the store bought precut bread for crostini and store bought pesto that I knew was good. These were super easy to throw together. The recipe also calls for tenderloin and I was on a budget and used top loin steak. Recipe originally from

Ingredients: ½ baguette, cut into ¼-inch slices (You should have around 25 slices.)
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
5 cloves garlic, divided
2 8-ounce pieces beef tenderloin
Fresh ground pepper
1/3 cup pesto of your choice 

For the Whipped Goat Cheese:
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 ounces goat cheese, softened
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Pinch of salt

Arrange the baguette slices on a large baking sheet. Lightly brush both sides of the bread with olive oil (you’ll need about 2 tablespoons of oil for this) and sprinkle with a little salt. Place bread under the broiler for 1-2 minutes on each side until lightly brown. Please pay attention while you do this, peeps, it is scarily easy to burn crostini. Peel 1 clove of garlic, and slice the tip off. Rub the clove on one side of each toasted baguette slice. Set crostini aside to cool while you get to work on your steak.

Pat the steaks dry with paper towels and season both sides generously with salt and fresh ground pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet or saucepan over medium-high heat. When hot, add the steaks and cook for about 4 minutes on each side for medium-rare. When you turn the steaks (after the first 4 minutes), smash 4 garlic cloves in their skins and add them to the skillet. Periodically use a spoon to baste the steaks with the oil/juices in the pan. Remove the steaks to a cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes before thinly slicing them against the grain. (Please don’t skip the resting step!!! You need to let all the beef’s glorious juices redistribute.)While the steaks are resting, get going on the whipped goat cheese. 

You have two options here: 1.) Place all of the ingredients in a food processor and process for 1-2 minutes until fluffy and smooth. 2.) Place all the ingredients in a bowl and beat with a hand mixer until fluffy and smooth. (I went with the latter bc I don’t like to clean my food processor, but you do you.)

To assemble your crostini: Spread each toasted baguette slice with whipped goat cheese. Top with a slice of steak and a small dollop of pesto. Done and done.

Red Cabbage Slaw

I made this for my sister-in-law, Kelly's, 40th birthday garden party. I changed the original recipe to make it a little sweeter, but it was so pretty! Recipe originally from Anne Burrell

1 head purple cabbage, tough bottom ribs discarded, leaves shredded
3 carrots, peeled and grated
1 red onion, peeled and very thinly sliced
1 cup malt vinegar
Kosher salt
1 1/2 to 2 cups mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/4 cup to 1/2 cup sugar

Combine the cabbage, carrots and onions in a large serving bowl. Douse the vegetables with the malt vinegar, season with salt and let set for at least an hour. This will soften the cabbage and make it seem almost cooked but still with a great texture.

Stir in the remaining ingredients and taste for seasoning. Serve cold or at room temperature. Refrigerate leftovers. 

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Homemade Taco Seasoning

I was asked to make the food for IF:Gathering this year. We had decided on a nacho bar for our Friday night "heavy" snack. We also had someone coming who was gluten free/dairy free and, y'all, gluten is in everything. So, I decided that I needed to make a from scratch taco seasoning and this is perfect. It is not too mild and it is not too spicy. The recipe below is for one pound of meat. So x30 that thing and put it in a container in your pantry! 


1 tablespoon chili powder
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon onion powder
¼ teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon paprika
1½ teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper


Combine all seasonings together and store in an airtight container.
I used one recipe in one pound of meat. Recipe can easily be doubled and use more or less to taste. I also like to add ½ cup of water to the meat and seasonings to make the meat more moist. 

This is super good on shredded chicken, if you like chicken tacos. 

Monday, October 2, 2017

Red Skinned Potato Salad

I've been making this for a couple of years, but haven't typed it up for posterity. I made it this past weekend for the family reunion and got lots of compliments from non-potato salad eaters. I could just eat plates of this at a BBQ and be very happy. I doubled the recipe, but didn't measure the mayo out. I just used a regular sized jar. I also like to add a sprinkle of smoked paprika when I serve it.

2 lbs clean red potatoes
6 hardboiled eggs
1 lb bacon cooked and crispy
1 onion, finely chopped
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
2 cups mayo
salt and pepper to taste

Cube your potatoes into bite sized chunks, leaving the skin on, and boil in salted water. Cook until tender, but still firm. About five to ten minutes once your water is boiling. I just poke them with a fork and see if they're done.

Drain and put into fridge to cool.

While your taters are cooling, chop the other ingredients.

Note for hardboiling eggs, just in case: Put your eggs in a pot and just cover with water, salt the water. On high heat, bring to a rolling boil. Then turn off heat and leave on burner for 25 minutes. Then peel and you're good to go.

Put all of your chopped ingredients (eggs, bacon, onion, celery and potatoes once cooled) into a bowl. Add your mayo and salt and pepper to taste. Chill for at least an hour before serving.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Banana Quick Bread and Muffins

This is a recipe that came with Aaron. He had a cookbook that his mother gave him when he went off to do his internship in California. In it she had dates and her thoughts on a recipe. Next to this one is 7/92 and "very good!" It is one that we also think is "very good" and want to keep using! We usually double this recipe and get around 2 dozen muffins. We always leave the nuts out because our people are allergic.

1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
2/3 cup of sugar
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1//2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup mashed ripe banana( we usually use 2 bananas for each recipe)
1/3 cup butter
2 tablespoons milk
2 eggs
1/4 cup chopped nuts, optional

In a large mixer bowl combine 1 cup of the flour, the sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add mashed banana, butter and milk. Beat on low speed till blended. Then on high speed for two minutes. Add eggs and remaining flour; beat till blended. Stir in nuts if using.

Pour batter into greased loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees for 55 to 60 minutes. Or, if making muffins, pour into greased muffin pans and bake at the same temp for about 25-30 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool for ten minutes on wire rack before removing from pan. Cool thoroughly on wire rack before storing in a closed container.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Spinach Artichoke Dip

A friend of ours brought this over for the Super Bowl party we had here... it is delicious!!! She got the recipe from Shondra at

Spinach and Artichoke Dip

1 pkg. frozen spinach thawed1 jar marinated artichokes, chopped8 oz. Philly cream cheese8 oz. sour cream3/4 c. shredded Parmesan cheese8 oz. shredded Monterey Jack cheese1/2 onion finely chopped1 stick butterred pepper flakes to taste
~Sauté onions in butter, adding ingredients while mixing and blending well after each addition. Add ingredients in this order: Spinach, Cream Cheese, Sour Cream, Parmesan Cheese, Artichoke Hearts, Crushed Red Pepper Flakes.
~Remove from heat and put in crocks or microwave dish. Top with Monterey Jack Cheese and melt.
~Serve hot with chips or bread.
***May also add Mozzarella Cheese on top and lightly brown.