To me, summertime is fresh seafood, seasonal vegetables, and cold cheerwine. Every summer my Daddy does a shrimp boil (low country boil, frog more stew). We cover a table with newspaper and dump a pot of goodness right into the center. No plates. Silverware optional. Spicy horseradish. Happiness.
No matter how many mouths you need to feed the process is the same! Just get a bigger pot.
- 1/2 lb wild caught shrimp
- 3 red potatoes
- 2 ears of corn
- 1 kielbasa sausage
- Old Bay seasoning packet
Bring a big pot of water to a boil. Once boiling add the potatoes and old bay – cook for 10 minutes (until just tender). After 10 minutes add the corn and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Then toss in the sausage and cook for 3 minutes. Finally toss in the shrimp and cut the heat! Stir them and let them cook in the residual heat. They’re done when they’re floating and a beautiful pink.
Drain all the water. Toss the Old Bay. Go crazy.
I love a brownie. Especially the fudgey, slightly undercooked ones. But, spoiler alert, I use boxed brownie mix…. always. And quite frankly, I can’t tell the difference in a homemade brownie and a $3 boxed mix. BUT a decent boxed blondie mix isn’t so easy to come by. So I’ve had to find a homemade version that suits. Once again browned butter makes this easy treat shine. They’re the perfect mix up to your typical chocolate chip cookie or brownie night.
Browned Butter Blondie
- 1 and 1/4 cup cold butter
- 3/4 Granulated Sugar
- 1 and 1/4 cup Brown Sugar
- 1 T vanilla
- 3/4 t Sea Salt
- 2 whole eggs
- 2 egg yolks
- 3/4 t baking soda
- 2 and 3/4 cup AP flour
- 2 cups chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350! Line and grease a 9×13 pan.
In a small sauce pan brown 1 cup of the butter. (Remember melt, foam, brown – wait for the nutty smell!). Put the remaining 1/4 cup butter in your mixing bowl. Add the browned butter and begin to mix. This cold butter with help temper the heat from the hot browned butter!
Once all the butter has melted, add the sugars, vanilla and salt. Mix until combined. Add the eggs + yolks and blend. Toss in the baking soda and add the flour. (I recommend adding the flour 1 cup at a time and scaring down the sides.)
Fold in the chocolate chips! Pour into the greased dish and pop into the oven for 30 minutes.
Spoiler alert: I’m a tad bit southern. And with that comes a deep love of all things pimento cheese. My mom used to pack me a half a pimento cheese sandwich almost every day for lunch. Stan’s has always been my favorite brand but I’ve started making my own and it’s so easy! Here’s how it’s done:
- 1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 cup sharp grated cheddar cheese
- 1 cup grated Monetary jack
- 1/2 cup mayo (Duke’s if you can)
- 3 T pimentos chopped
- 1 t grated onion
- 1/4 t salt
- 1/4 t pep
- 1/4 t garlic powder
In a blender beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add all other ingredients and blend until smooth! If you like a chunkier texture you can skip the blender. Add jalops if you like it spicy.
Spread on a cracker, sandwich, burger or spoon. NOM
Mama’s dump cobbler is the victim of many late night nibbles. You literally can’t stop eating it. It’s as wonderful as a hug from your Mama. We also call this cuppa, cuppa, cuppa – you’ll see why…
Peach Dump Cobbler
- 2-3 cups of fresh OR frozen peaches
- 1 CUPPA sugar
- 1 CUPPA self rising flour
- 1 CUPPA milk
- 1 stick of melted butter
- 1 dash of vanilla
- 1 pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. In a pie dish or cast iron skillet place the sliced peaches.
Mix all other ingredients together and dump it over the fruit. Bake for 35-40 minutes until the crust is golden brown. Top with vanilla ice cream of whip cream.
Mix it up! Try blackberries, strawberries or blubs!
Chipotle Chili Powder is no joke. That has been my take away point from today. This is my take on a few pintrest recipes meshed into one. It’s creamy, fresh and healthy. Oh, and really spicy. It only takes about 20 minutes start to finish.
Creamy Avocado Zoodles with Chipotle Lime Shrimp
- 1lb shrimp (I like to leave the tails on)
- 2 ripe avocados
- 1/2 cup greek yogurt
- 6-8 basil leaves
- 4 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2-3 zucchini, spiralized into zoodles
- salt and pep
Step 1: Marinate the shrimp! Toss them with 1 T lime juice, chipotles chili powder, salt and pep. Set them aside while you make the sauce.
Step 2: Sauce time! In a food process or blender add: avocado meat, yogurt, remaining lime juice, basil, garlic, salt and pep. Blitz this until smooth.
Step 3: Cook! Cook the shrimp in a hot pan for 2-3 minutes per side. They should be pink and slight squishy. Keep and eye on them and use this time to make the zoodles.
Step 4: Combine! Toss the zoodles in your sauce. Top with shrimp – garnish with basil, parmesan cheese and lime juice!
YUM! Truly the shrimp alone are almost too spicy BUT when paired with the cool, creamy sauce it balances beautifully!
Greens are a beautiful thing. Collards, mustard greens, creasys, kale – they’re superfoods and southern classics. After visiting home for the holidays I found myself wanting more and more of the down-home classics. Greens, beans and cornbread were the staples of my childhood kitchen and every bite is nostalgic to me.
After making a mess of collard greens I realized I had so much pot likkor left over. This liquid is flavorful and chock full of vitamins but sometimes is overlooked. Pot likkor soup is the most classic use for the green liquid gold but while delicious, it doesn’t really transform the broth. So I decided to try and use it as the liquid in a rustic risotto. I love it when wild idea works out. Here’s how I did it.
**SAME TECHNIQUE AS THE LEMON THYME RISOTTO**
pot likkor risotto
- 3 cups of pot likkor
- 1 cup greens
- 1.5 cups arborio rice
- 1 can diced tomatoes drained
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 chopped shallot (onion is fine too this is just what I had)
- 1/4 cup grated parm
- 1 T butter
- juice of 1/2 lemon
In a heavy dutch oven heat EVOO and butter over medium high heat. Toss in shallot and garlic – when they begin to smell amazing stir in the rice. Make sure every grain is coated and shiny. Begin ladling in the pot likkor, one ladleful at a time.
Remember to keep stirring regularly. This give us that silky constancy that we love! You’ll be able to tell when the rice won’t take anymore liquid. Be sure to taste and see if your rice is cooked al dente! Once it’s ready – stir in tomatoes, cheese, and greens.
YUM. It’s all the flavors of greens you love – sweet, spicy, garlicy – in a creamy, indulgent bite.
Sometimes I think I’m a genius. Then I remember I’m the same girl who napped 3 hours today totally on accident….
Acorn squash are one of my favorite sweet treats but this week I switched up the game! I made a savory version of this little gem and it was just as amazing.
I first saw a version of this on Buzzed but then didn’t use their recipe. Typical.
Sausage and Apple Stuffed Acorn Squash
- 1 acorn squash!
- 1/2 lb Italian sausage!
- 1 apple, diced!
- 1/2 onion, diced!
- 1/2 t dry thyme
- 1 T fresh parsley, chopped!
- 1 garlic clove, minced!
- 1/4 t smoked paprika!
- salt and pep!
- 1/8 cup parm!
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut a small portion on the acorn bottom off, to give it a solid base. Then remove the top 1/4 and scoop out the seeds. Bake off until tender- about 1 hour. You essentially make a squash bowl.
While the squash is baking, brown the sausage. When cooked, pour off all the excess grease then add onion and garlic. Cook until the onion start to soften.
Mix the sausage love with apple, herbs and spices! (Over)fill your squash bowl with this mixture and top with the parm. Pop it back into the hot oven until the cheese melts, about 10-15 minutes!
As you eat be sure and get a squash scoop with every bite. YUM
Today I was exhausted. I’ve begun my surgery rotation and have been working at least 14 hours days. I walked 15,000 steps last Thursday! Makes you want to turn off the pedometer, ya feel? When I am that beat down I need just three things – a nap, an outing and comfort food. I got my power nap (praise) and we went to the pumpkin patch (so basic it hurts but check out my pumpkin).
All that was left was some comfort food! I had always found risotto really intimidating until recently. The steps seemed complicated, the window for perfection small. But I learned that risotto is really just a method and with a little faith and patience can be easily added to your culinary repertoire.
Lemon & thyme risotto
- 1/2 onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 T butter
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 1/3 cups risotto rice, preferably Arborio
- Approximately 1 quart vegetable stock ( or chicken!)
- 1/2 lemon, zested and juiced
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 4 tablespoons grated Parmesan
- Salt and Pep
In a saucepan heat the stock to a simmer. In a seperate heavy dutch oven heat 1 T butter and and olive oil heat the onion and garlic until fragrant. Mix in the rice, stirring to give it a good coating of oil and butter.
Begin to to add the stock to the rice, one ladle at a time and keep stirring until the stock is absorbed. Then add another ladleful and stir again. Continue doing this until the rice is al dente (soft but with a chew to it). You may need more or less stock but you can use some water if you run out of stock!
When it’s just right pop in the butter, cheese, lemon zest and juice, thyme and salt and pep! Mix it up and eat up! Risotto is good reheated- but it’s transcendent the moment it’s done.
My birthday is tomorrow! Woohoo. I’ve reached the age where a birthday is pretty much just another day – BUT it’s a beautiful day where I can eat cake and carbs with ZERO guilt. I started the carb train a night early… so sue me.
ricotta and sausage stuffed shell in brown butter sweet potato sauce
- 1/2 lb Italian sausage browned and drained
- 1 package pasta shells
- 2 cups ricotta cheese
- 1/2 shredded parm cheese
- 1 egg
- 1/2 teaspoon Italian seansonig
- 3 Tablespoons butter
- 3 cloves of minced garlic
- 1 Tablespoon AP flour
- 1 cup boiled sweet potatoes
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 cup milk
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Boil the shells but don’t cook them all the way! About 9 minutes. Drain and cool and set aside.
In your ninja or blender – blitz potatoes and water! Set aside.
Mix cooled sausage, ricotta, 1/2 the parm, egg and Italian seasoning together. Set aside. (I like saying set aside. It’s like a check off a check list.)
Browned butter can be tricky but the key is DO NOT WALK AWAY FROM IT. Place your butter in a large skillet and melt the butter. Bubbles will begin to form as the butter melts, keep whisking the butter as it begins to turn brown. You’ll see the color change and smell the nuttiness.
Remove from heat and add the garlic, cook or about 30 seconds. Whisk in 1 Tablespoon of flour. Add the milk, sweet potato puree and pepper. Whisk well and slowly add the remaining parm. Poor this sauce into a baking dish.
Fill each shell with a heaping tablespoon of your cheese/sausage goodie then place in the dish. Bake off at 375 until bubbly! About 25 minutes. Top with grated parm and something green!
Poblano peppers are perfect. They have flavor and a subtle heat. They come alive when roasted and you can truly stuff them with anything. I’ve been trying to ease off the carb train (which is funny because I also have begun to bake bread) so I didn’t want to stuff them with rice. Clearly jicama is the next choice… said no one ever….
jicama and andouille stuffed poblano peppers
- 2 cups jicama diced
- 3 poblano peppers
- 2 andouille sausages diced
- 1/2 red onion diced
- 1 avocado diced
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 dried cilantro (or 1T fresh)
- 1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
- Big pinch of salt and pep
Roast the peppers in a 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes. Allow them to cool before handling them! Slice in half and remove the seeds and pulp. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl mix jicama, sausage, onion, avocado and spices. Fill the peppers with your mixture and pop back into the hot oven. Cook covered for 20-30 minutes.
The jicama doesn’t completely soften but the texture is similar to the classic rice filling! Top with cheese, sour cream, salsa or cilantro!