Archive for June, 2009

Strawberry Fig Jam


I had a hankering for some home made jam this weekend, so this is what happened. I wrote a lengthier post about it on my other blog, so go on over and read it if you want to!

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pizza night

Although we hadn’t done it in a while, Friday nights are usually Pizza Nights for Dev and me. I make a pizza and we settle in to watch bad cable, a netflix movie or Friday Night Boxing- whichever is on.

Because we hadn’t had home made pizza in a while, I decided to go half and half. One half is hawaiian (Canadian bacon, ham, pineapple and red onion) the other half is veggie (onion, mushrooms, tomatoes, spinach and parmesan).

I made a quick sauce from a can of crushed tomatoes, olive oil, red pepper flakes, garlic, red onion and a little sugar.

I love pizza night!

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BBQ Chicken

bbq chicken

Barbecued Chicken. It sounds so simple. Google it. You will be amazed at the number of recipes for sauces and methods you will find.

Chicken is one of my favorite things to roast and grill. And BBQ chicken is all that much better.

So I began to look around for a sweet, spicy sauce to slather all over some beautiful organic chicken quarters I bought at the store.

I found the perfect sauce recipe in the Foodtv magazine. And it was a Bobby Flay recipe. That suits me just fine, because I love his recipes for grilling, and I love the spice in his recipes.

Here’s the recipe- scanned right out of the magazine…

bobby bbq sauce

I’m pretty sure I followed it to the letter, although I think I substituted vegetable oil for canola.

The results were terrific! It is sweet and thick and spicy! Next time I will add a little more chipotle, though. After refrigerating it a few days, it lost some of the depth of the heat.

I roasted the chicken at 400 until it was about 10 degrees from done (it had reached 160 on an instant read thermometer), then I slathered on the sauce and put it back in the oven to reach 170.

The chicken shared the plate with some garlic smashed potatoes and roasted squash. A very yummie meal indeed. It will be repeated several more times before the summer season is over. I can’t wait to put this sauce on some grilled chicken, or even pork….the possibilities are endless!

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Originally uploaded by All Things Mimi

After we grilled some pork chops the other night, I had a craving for a smore.

So we broke out the bamboo skewers, the marshmellows and all the other fixins, and I got what I was after.

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Ice Cream Sandwich

Originally uploaded by All Things Mimi

It would seem after looking at the last few posts I’ve written, that I’m in a sandwich mood lately.

Dev and I have become really spoiled when it comes to ice cream. Sometime last year I purchased a cheap countertop ice cream maker. You know, the kind you have to store the barrel in the freezer til it’s time to use it. I think ours has a 2 quart capacity.

Anyhoo, we now can have really good home made ice cream whenever we want.

The other day I had a batch of vanilla in the freezer, when suddenly I had a WICKED craving for an ice cream sandwich. The kind I usually buy at the store has a 2 chocolate chip cookies with vanilla ice cream in between, so I thought, why not make a batch of home made cookies and then use the home made vanilla to make the sandwiches?

So that’s what I did.

I used the sweet cream ice cream base recipe from my Ben and Jerry’s book for the vanilla ice cream:

2 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
2 cups heavy or whipping cream
1 cup whole milk

Whisk the eggs in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy (1 to 2 minutes). Whisk in sugar, a little at a time, then continue whisking until completely blended (about 1 minute more). Pour in the cream and milk and whisk to blend.

I put the mixture in the freezer for about 10 minutes while I set up my ice cream maker. Then I turn on the machine, pour it in, and in about 20 minutes I have soft serve vanilla ice cream. I scoop it into a plastic container and put it back in the freezer to harden up before serving.

For the sandwich part, I used a Paula Deen recipe for Brown Sugar Cookies…

1 cup (2 sticks) butter; at room temp
2 cups packed brown sugar (I used light brown)
2 Tablespoons vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 cups self rising flour
2 cups chopped pecans
chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a bowl, cream the butter and sugar, then beat in vanilla. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well. Add the flour 1/2 cup at a time, continuing to beat. Stir in the nuts and chocolate chips.
Drop dough by heaping tablespoon onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until golden brown.

This recipe made 24 really big cookies for me. You can make them smaller if you aren’t using them for sandwiches.

So after the cookies cooled, I chose 4 of the biggest and made the ice cream sandwiches out of them.

It wasn’t entirely successful. I really think you need to use a softer cookie to make these, because when you bite into the sandwich, you want the cookie to give and allow you to get to the ice cream. These were a bit stiff. But they still tasted really good!

As for the foot in the picture, you all know who that is. Sometimes I wonder what’s wrong with that boy…. 🙂

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Shrimp and Pasta

Originally uploaded by lyricalmezzo

I was at the beach today and noticed the dolphins swimming close to shore and the fleet of shrimp boats coming into the channel. Leaving the beach I pulled into the first seafood place I saw and bought some fresh caught shrimp. Fresh caught shrimp the best and these were a nice size. I brought them home and peeled them and then very simply cooked them in olive oil and chopped garlic. When the shrimp were done, I coated them in paprika and squeezed ¼ of fresh lemon juice over top.

I served this with homemade macaroni and cheese and a beautiful salad of all fresh produce – cucumber, tomato, and romaine – all from Davis Produce. I also heated some bread which made a perfect instrument to sop up all the garlic and olive oil left behind by the shrimp. YUM.

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Chicken wing frenzy

Originally uploaded by lyricalmezzo

My sister had a craving for chicken wings so we went to store and picked up a bag. I made three sauces – one was a chipotle based sweet sauce, one was taco flavored, one was garlic and onion (smelly but good). I didn’t have any celery and it is a pain anyway so I used locally grown cucumbers and fresh blue cheese dressing.

Cooking the wings – there are lots of ways to do this; here’s my way

I sprinkled the wings with salt and pepper and then drizzled a bit of olive oil over them then cooked them in a 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes. I then removed the wings and tossed them in their respective sauces then put them back in the oven for about 5 minutes. I served them with the sliced cucumber and blue cheese and that was dinner. It was not healthy but you always have to respect the craving.

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This is a tried and true recipe and I think I may have even blogged about it before. I went to the store looking for what was fresh – they had fresh ahi for $7 a fillet. Sounds expensive, but it is usually about $15 so…I was happy to pay that for what was definitely some super nice tuna.

I seasoned the tuna with various spices – just use what you like – I can’t even remember exactly what I used, but for sure there was at least salt, pepper, red pepper, old bay and whatever else looked good at the moment.

Pan sear the tuna for about 3 minutes per side depending on how you like it cooked – these steaks were medium I’d say.

The Risotto:

Cut 12 asparagus spears into 3 inch pieces and cook for 2 in 3 cups of vegetable stock just at a boil. Remove the asparagus and set aside – keep the stock on low.

In a deep sauté pan – sauté ½ sweet onion (chopped) in olive oil and butter until the onion softens. Add ¾ cup of risotto and toss with onions for about 2 minutes. Add ¾ cup of white wine (sherry or champagne –whatever you have on hand) stir until liquid absorbs. Add ½ cup of stock and stir until it is absorbed. Continue this process until you have added all the liquid. Once you have added all the liquid add the asparagus and about ¾ cup of grated parmesan cheese. It is a bit labor intensive, but very tasty and it keeps well for leftovers.

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