Archive for the ‘Dinner’ Category

Shrimp and Grits

Shrimp and GritsToday I finally decided to conquer the Shrimp and Grits dish that I have fallen in love with. I was never a lover of grits, moving to the south I have finally learned to enjoy and discover how good they can be. My FAVORITE grit dish is Shrimp and Grits. This past Saturday I found some stone ground grits from our a CSA pick, Faucette Farms and I have a big bag of Shrimp sitting in the freezer just waiting to be used. Now off to google recipes, I needed some easy like a crock pot recipe but I wanted something with a little kick and twist. I found both in 2 different recipes so I did what any adventurous cook would do, merge them. Oh boy was it TASTY I’m in love.

  • 4 cups of broth
  • 1 cup of stone ground grits
  • 1 cup of shredded cheese (cheddar or colby mix)
  • 2 Tbsp of butter
  • 1 lb of shrimp
  • 6 slices of bacon
  • 1/2 large onion chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • can of chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 tsp of red pepper flakes

In a crock pot put the grits and broth cook on low for up to 5 hours. Rinse and dry shrimp. Fry bacon in a large skillet, drain well. Saute  the onions, garlic and shrimp in bacon grease until shrimp are pink. Add cheese and butter to grits mix well. Then add shrimp, bacon and tomato. Season with red pepper flakes cook for another 30 minutes.


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So in an effort to eat less gluten because it helps make my tummy feel better and less bloated I have ventured off on different preparations for gluten coated fish sticks and chicken nuggets. I have a great gluten free chicken nugget recipe we love here, which I’ll post later.

3 lbs of cod filet (ended up being 3 filets)
3/4 cup of almond meal
1/2 cup of finely shredded coconut
1/4 tsp of sea salt
1/8 tsp of ground pepper
1/2 tsp of ground ginger
1/2 cup of coconut milk
half of lemon or lemon juice

Pat dry the cod filets, sprinkle with salt, pepper and squirt with lemon juice. Pour 1/2 cup of coconut milk over filets. Turn to ensure both sides are coated. Let them sit for a 15 minutes to marinate.

Now prep the breading by mixing almond meal, shredded coconut, ginger, salt and pepper in a shallow bowl. Drain fish and coat in breading.

Fish can either be baked in the oven at 500 degrees for 10 minutes turning halfway through or fried in coconut oil. I fried mine and they were tasty but totally not coated. I need to work on that.

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Jerk Chicken Nachos

6 cups tortilla chips
3 cups shredded chicken
2 cups shredded cheese
2 tbsp Jamacian Jerk Rub
1 small yellow pepper & red pepper
1 lime
1 tbsp snipped cilantro
1.4 cup sour cream + 1 tsp Jamacian Jerk Rub

Preheat ove n425 arrange chips in large round baking dish
combine chicken, 1 tbsp of rub. Sprinkle chicken over chips bake 5-7 minutes until cheese is melted. mix lime juice, peppers and remaining rub. Spoon this over chicken and chips sprinkle with cilantro If desired combine sour cream and rub then pipe this mix over nachos. Garnish with Lime slices

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Rib Rub the right way

Today Dave tried this Rib Rub prior to grilling and sauteing in Sir Charles BBQ sauce.
1/3 cup paprika
3 tablespoons dry mustard
3 tablespoons onion powder
3 tablespoons garlic powder
2 tablespoons ground basil
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon salt
2 teaspoons red pepper

Combine all ingredients. Store in an airtight container. When applying to ribs, coat heavily and massage into the meat. If you want to make a sweet rub add 2 tablespoons of brown sugar.
cook on the grill at 250 for about 30-45 minute a side in a foil wrapped and paritally open for 15 minutes rib side up and then direct heat on grill 10 minutes each side.

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A few years ago a dear friend back in Indiana gave us the recipe. She gleamed it from a cooking program when they lived in Florida, years ago. It has become one of our family’s favorite winter stew’s, it encompasses the fall vegetables and the coastal fish. So it’s perfect North Carolina meal.

2 Tbsp of butter
1 C finely chopped onion
1 C finely chopped celery
1 C finely chopped green pepper
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp curry
1 tsp salt
3 medium potatoes
3 medium carrots
2 lb of cod
2 butternut squash or 4 cups chopped
64 ounces of chicken broth

Melt butter in large pot, add onion, celery and green peppers; saute until soft. Add broth and bring to boil. Add potatoes, carrots, cubed squash. Add salt, pepper and curry. Boil until veggies are tender about 20 minutes. Add cubed cod, boil for 5 minutes and serve.

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I grew up eating Pat Vaughn’s Sloppy Joe’s. My mother made them whenever we had a big gathering, be that family or friends. It was one of her favorite easy go to meals. Pat Vaughn was our next door neighbor when I was a young girl. Her oldest daughter and I would play in our adjoining yards, in the winter sledding down my terrific hill in the side and front yard, climbing trees – well mainly I would climb tree’s I was the tom boy, Laura was more of a girly girl. Not that there is anything wrong with that.

To this day, Pat will always have a special place in my heart. Both her and her husband Joe were a great influence on me and a wonderful support. They loved and treasured me just like I was there daughter and I appreciate that today.

Well I must give up my memory lane and put pen to paper or shall I saw fingers to key board and document this recipe. Because tomorrow I will be making it for our first ever Pumpkin Carving Party. I am hoping we can carve pumpkins outside in the driveway. Hurricane Sandy is threatening to give us rain shows, but maybe they will only go as far as the Triangle area. Keep your fingers crossed.

Sloppy Joe’s ala Pat Vaugh

1 lb of ground beef
3/4 C ketchup
1/2 C water
1/4 Vinegar
2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp minced onion
1 1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tsp dry mustard
2 T sweet relish (maybe 3 to taste)

Brown the beef in the pan, then combine with ketchup, water, vinegar, sugar and spices. It can be kept warm in a crock pot for easy serving.

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This is our favorite go to meal for our family. Dave has this recipe memorized we have had it so much in our married life. Natalee now loves it too.

  • 500 g/1 lb of spaghetti (we use 100 g per person)
  • 2 Tbsp of olive oil
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 4 Tbsp of chopped parsley is using dried substitute 1 tsp per 1 Tbsp of fresh
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 C of grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • salt & pepper

Heat olive oil and add the chopped garlic and parsley. Stir continually over low heat, gradually adding drained and flaked tuna. The heat should remain low so that none of the ingredients changes color

Cook the pasta, following directions. Drain pasta, add sauce and stir well. Next add lemon juice, grated cheese, butter divided into small pieces, salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Stir well.

* Another more strongly flavored version of this sauce can be made leaving out the cheese and butter and adding 3 chopped anchovy fillets, 1/2 small chilli pepper to the intial frying of the garlic and parsley.


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