Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Grilled Salsa Verde #CookoutWeek

Welcome to Day 3 of Cookout Week where we are sharing our favorite picnic, potluck, cookout and bbq recipes all week long.  The ladies of The PinterTest Kitchen have gathered over 40 bloggers to participate in this great event. They have also arranged for a fantastic giveaway for our readers valued at over $400.  You can learn all about the great prizes and enter to win by going to my Welcome Post.

Yesterday I shared this amazing recipe for Grilled Honey Lime Chicken Fajitas.  When I made this dish I topped the Fajitas with a smoky, spicy Grilled Salsa Verde that I am sharing with you today and a wonderful Grilled Corn Salad that I will be sharing with you tomorrow.

I started out by grilling up some wonderful fresh veggies to put into this salsa.  I had some sweet Vidalia Onion that I slice and put into a grill pan.

And some Tomatillos, Poblano Peppers and a Jalapeno Pepper that I tossed with olive oil, salt and pepper and placed right onto the grill grates to soften and char.  I got the idea for this salsa from one for Roasted Salsa Verde found in Cuisine at Home.  I adjusted the amounts and the ingredients to meet our tastes and used the grill instead of the oven for roasting.

I ended up with this vibrant and beautiful salsa that brought some brightness and heat to the fajitas. This salsa is also delicious with chips and can be used in any dish that you enjoy with red salsa.  This salsa lasts for 2 weeks in the refrigerator and could be preserved canning it using the water bath technique for longer shelf life.

I know that you will enjoy this vibrant, bright and delicious salsa and I know you will find other recipes that you can't wait to try following this recipe.

Grilled Salsa Verde
adapted from Cuisine at Home

5 Tomatillos, husked
3 Poblano Chiles
4 (1/4") slices of Sweet Onion
1 Jalapeno pepper
1 T. olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
3 garlic cloves, peeled
1 handful cilantro leaves
juice of 1/2 a lime
1 t. sugar + more to taste

Toss the tomatillos, poblanos, onions and jalapeno in the olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Place on a grill over med high heat and grill until charred and softened.  You may wish to use a grill pan for the onions so they don't fall through the grates.

Remove from grill and remove the charred, waxy skin from the peppers.  Place the tomatillos, peppers, and onion into the bowl of a food processor.  Add the garlic, cilantro. 1 t. sugar and lime juice.  Puree to desired consistency, adding water if salsa is too thick.  Taste and season with additional sugar and salt if desired.  Print Recipe

More Cookout Creations

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Red White and Blue Bundt #July4Recipes

Our friend, Ellen of Family Around the Table, suggested we all post a #Patriotic theme on our blogs today to help our readers prepare for the upcoming July 4th Holiday.  Ellen suggested we share table settings, decoration tips, DIY projects and, of course, recipes.

Here is Ellen's invitation:
July 4th, 1776 is the date the Second Continental Congress adopted The United States Declaration of Independence effectively ending British rule. Now we celebrate our independence each year on July 4th with fireworks, picnics, parades and backyard barbecues across our nation. Join these 11 bloggers as we celebrate and share some patriotic themed recipes!

We have been super busy lately, with no end in sight, so there has not been much DIY except for yard work.  I don't have any new decorations to share and my table settings have been sporadic.  But....there is a always a recipe to share.

This is an easy, peasy recipe from Betty Crocker, using a boxed white cake mix and some food coloring.  You make the cake per package directions, divide the batter, and add the color.  Put the red in the bottom, then add the white and then the blue. No need to swirl, just stick it in the oven.

It comes out of the oven looking like a normal bundt cake.  Let it cool and then decorate it up to your liking.  The original recipe had you coloring your frosting red white and blue as well.  I just melted up some canned, prepared frosting, drizzled it over the cake and added sprinkles.

When you slice it you have a beautiful red white and blue celebration for your Holiday table.  My colors were very subtle as you can see.  Should you want deeper, richer color you will need to add much more food coloring.  I think an overabundance of food coloring changes the flavor of the food. That might all be in my head but I take it easy with the food coloring, none the less.

Make sure you scroll past my recipe to find links to all the other fun, festive, holiday ideas being shared today. I have also linked this post to Celebrate 365.  Check out all the fun posts there as well.

Red White and Blue Bundt
source: Betty Crocker

1 white cake mix
water, egg whites and cooking oil as listed on the box
red and blue food coloring
1 can prepared white frosting
Patriotic sprinkles

Make the cake as directed on the box.  Remove 2 cups of the batter, placing each into it's own bowl. Tint one cup red and the other blue.  Pour the red tinted batter into the bottom of a bundt pan that has been liberally treated with baking spray.  Pour the white batter directly onto the red.  Pour the blue batter in a ring around the center of the white batter.  Place in a preheated 325* oven and bake as directed on the box, until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake removes cleanly.

Remove the cake from the oven to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes before turning it out of the pan to the rack to cool completely.  

Remove desired amount of frosting from the can to a glass measuring cup. (I used about half a can). Place in the microwave for 30 seconds, until melted.  Place the cake onto a serving platter and drizzle with the melted frosting.  Top immediately with sprinkles. Print Recipe

More July 4 Recipes

Honey Lime Chicken Fajitas #CookoutWeek

I am so excited to be sharing some recipes with you for #CookoutWeek2017.  This is such a wonderful event and it is all thanks to the ladies at The PinterTest Kitchen.  They not only wrangled up a slew of bloggers to share their favorite Cookout Foods and Recipes but they also gathered up numerous sponsors so that you, our readers, can enter a fantastic giveaway worth over $400. Wooohoooooo...Run over to my Welcome Post and enter right now!  I will wait to share my recipe for these amazing chicken fajitas until you return.


Welcome back....I am keeping my fingers crossed that you are the lucky winner!!  Even if you don't win this amazing prize package you will still be the winner, winner chicken dinner when you serve up this great meal that I am sharing with you all week long.  

We are grilling up some vegetables to make a grilled salsa verde, and some corn to make a great, fresh salad with tomatoes and avocados.  You can pile those on top of a cheesy grilled tortilla that is covered with a juicy tender chicken breast that is marinated in honey and lime, 

Or you can enjoy that delicious roasted corn salad as a side instead of on top...but better both!!

Today, let's start with the chicken fajitas. I adapted this recipe from one I found in my 2008 issue of Cuisine at Home.  I think the best tip that I got from this recipe/article is to grill the cheese right onto the tortilla rather than serving it in a bowl to be added afterwards.  Using this method you don't lose on drop of that ooey gooey cheesy goodness.

The marinade is a wonderful mix of ingredients that you probably already have on hand.  Whisk together some lime juice, honey, garlic and hot sauce and pour it into a gallon size plastic bag that seals shut.  Add your chicken, press out the air and refrigerate for a half an hour while you enjoy a refreshing Mango Peach Margarita.

After a half an hour, carry that Margarita out to the grill, along with that bag of chicken, and grill over medium heat until it is perfectly cooked to a tender, juicy 165*.

Don't miss all the other great recipes being shared during #CookoutWeek.  You will find links to all of them being shared today immediately following this recipe that served 6 adults with leftovers.

Honey Lime Chicken Fajitas
adapted from Cuisine at Home

3 large or 6 small boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 lbs)
Juice of 3 large limes
1/3 c. honey
1/4 c. minced garlic
2 dashes hot sauce
12 large flour tortillas
1 (2 cup) package shredded Mexican Blend Cheese

Wash and trim the chicken and place into a gallon size plastic bag that seals shut.  Whisk together the lime juice, honey, garlic and hot sauce.  Pour over chicken, press out air, seal and refrigerate for 1/2 an hour.

Heat grill to medium.  Remove chicken from marinade, discarding the marinade. Grill the chicken for 5-6 minutes per side, until it reaches an internal temperature of 165*. Remove from grill and set aside to rest for a few minutes while you make the tortillas.

Reduce grill to low heat and grill tortillas for about a minute, flip over and sprinkle with some of the cheese.  Continue to cook until cheese melts.

Slice the chicken breast into 1/4" pieces and serve along with the tortillas and your desired toppings. Print Recipe

More Amazing Cookout Fare

Monday, June 26, 2017

Welcome to #Cookout Week and a Great #Giveaway


 Get those grills fired up... because it's #CookoutWeek 2017! This week, I'm joining forces with over 40 food blogger friends to bring you delicious recipes perfect for every backyard BBQ, picnic, summer party, or cookout. We also have a fabulous giveaway featuring products from the brands who have made #CookoutWeek possible! You can enter below to win:
  • From blog host The PinterTest Kitchen: $100 Amazon gift card, to use to buy all the supplies you need for your next cookout
  • From our sponsor The French Farm: A gift pack of gourmet products hand-crafted by small businesses and using only the finest ingredients - La Favorita Genovese Pesto, Caprichos del Guadalquivir Cadenera Orange Marmalade, and L’Abeille Occitane Lavender Honey
  • From our sponsor Smokin'-Os: A sampler pack of their "smokin'-os" wood rings, to help you add wood-fired, smokey taste to your grilled foods, even if you don't own a smoker
  • From our sponsor Primal Kitchen: $200 of Primal Kitchen goodies, including condiments made with avocado oil and bars and shakes with grass-fed collagen
  • From our sponsor Langers Juice Company: Your choice of 10 bottles of Langers Juice, with flavors including traditional Apple and Grape, as well as interesting mixes such as Pineapple Orange Coconut, Cranberry Blood Orange, and Mango Peach
  • From our sponsor True Made Foods: A 3-bottle sampler pack of sauces with real flavors made from real vegetables and less sugar - Ketchup, BBQ, and Veracha
This prize pack has an ARV of over $400! You have until July 1 at 11:59 PM to enter by following our sponsors and bloggers on social media.

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Stay tuned... remember, throughout the week, all of the participating bloggers will be posting delicious cookout recipes.  I am posting a dish each day so that by the end of the week you will have a complete Cookout Dinner to enjoy for the weekend.  It is quick.  It is easy.  It is delicious.  I can't wait to share it with all of you.

Here are all the bloggers who are part of #CookoutWeek 2017.

As one of the bonus entries in the giveaway, leave a comment on this blog post... what is your favorite dish to eat at a cookout?

Here are some recipes being shared today

Cinnamon Rhubarb Muffins #MuffinMonday

It's rhubarb season again and what better way to use up some rhubarb than with some light fluffy muffins with a cinnamon sugar topping?

These muffins that I'm sharing with you on the Muffin Monday are adapted from a recipe found at Fine Cooking. They were written as a sour cream muffin but I used half sour cream and half ricotta cheese since that was what I had in the refrigerator.  I also used almond extracts as I was out of vanilla.  They were absolutely delicious and lasted exactly 2 hours once they were baked.  I took a few to a friend's house and the rest were gobbled by me, Frank and our Little Miss.

Cinnamon Rhubarb Muffins
adapted from Fine Cooking

2 c. flour
3/4 c. sugar
2 1/2 t. baking powder
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. baking soda
pinch of salt
1/2 c. sour cream
1/2 c. ricotta cheese
1 T. milk
1 stick butter, melted and cooled
2 eggs
1 1/2 c. small dice rhubarb
Cinnamon Sugar for sprinkling (1 t. cinnamon + 1/4 c. sugar)

In large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder cinnamon, baking soda and salt.

In med. bowl whisk together the sour cream, ricotta, milk, butter and eggs. 

Make a well in the dry ingredients and add the wet ingredients all at once into the well.  Stir just until combined then fold in the rhubarb.

Divide the batter between 12 cup muffin tin that is treated with baking spray or lined with paper cups. Sprinkle generously with Cinnamon Sugar.  You can make your own cinnamon sugar using the amounts indicated above.  Store any extra in a sealed container or baggie in a dry location.

Bake in a preheated 400* oven for about 20 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the center removes cleanly.  Print Recipe

More Marvelous Muffins

#MuffinMonday is a group of muffin loving bakers who get together once a month to bake muffins. You can see all our of lovely muffins by following our Pinterest board.

Updated links for all of our past events and more information about Muffin Monday, can be found on our home page.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Let the Visiting Begin.....and the Weekly Menu

Our son from Denmark, Dian, his girl, Helena and their baby, Jordan, arrive this afternoon for a 3 week visit to the USA.  We are so excited to meet Helena and Jordan and can't wait to spend time with Dian who was fondly referred to as "Bratski" while he lived with us.

This is the first day of company from out of town staying with us for the summer.  My brother, Larry, and his wife, Mary, arrive July 6th for the month.  While they are with us, some of Mary's friends are coming in from California too so we will have them for a few days as well.  It is going to be a hectic, busy, fun filled summer!!

Yesterday was spent going to the Farmer's Market, Butcher and Grocers to have full cupboards, pantry and refrigerator for our guests.  The afternoon was spent on yard work and then we attended a Graduation party for Frank's cousin's son.

Today we are going to 9:30 am Mass and then heading over to a neighboring town for an Art Fair. Dian and family should be arriving to the house about 3 or 4 pm.  Tingting and Melody will be over to welcome them.  Dian was living at our house and attending school with Tingting.  It was he who let us know that she needed a home for the second semester.  We invited her to stay with us and the rest is history. 

Dian's favorite food while he was here was hamburgers so that is what we are serving for his first dinner home. We are going to play the rest of the week by ear.  I have a meeting at church to attend on Monday afternoon and we are picking John and Kirsten up at the airport late Wednesday evening when they return from Japan.  I can't wait to hear all about their trip.

So here is the Weekly may be switched up depending on what activities we decide on during the week but at least I will have a plan in mind.

Graduation Party

Potato Salad
Baked Beans

Meatless Monday
Spinach and Cheese Ravioli
Caesar Salad
Tomato/Blue Cheese Salad
Garlic Bread

Chicken Enchiladas
Spanish Rice
Refried Beans

Meatballs in Mushroom Gravy
Horseradish Mashed Potatoes
Steamed Broccoli

Asst. Grilled Sausages
Asst. Salads

Fish Friday
Shrimp Scampi
Pasta Agli Olio

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Lahma Bil Basal #EatLikeAnEgyptian

Today marks the end of Ramadan, a time of prayer and fasting for those of the Muslim faith, reminiscent (to me) of the Lenten Season of the Christian Community.  This Holiday is known as Eid al-Fitr.
"What is Eid al-Fitr? The arabic name Eid al-Fitr translates to 'festival of the breaking of the fast' in English. It marks the end of the month-long fast of Ramadan, and the beginning of the Islamic month of Shawwal."

My friend, Sue of Palatable Pastime invited us to Eat Like An Egyptian in support and celebration with our Muslim friends.

When I finished my Google search to learn what this holiday was all about, I conducted another to find an Egyptian Recipe.  Many of the Middle Eastern Foods that I am crazy about: hommus, baba ghanouj, chicken shwarma, mujadara, baklava, stuffed grape leaves, and kebabs are included in this group.

I also found a recipe for this delicious, tender Beef in Rich Onion Broth that I knew would be easily adaptable to the crockpot.  

I had a funeral to attend that was several hours away.  It was on a Wednesday and we watch our Little Miss Melody on Wednesdays so Frank remained home with her so I could attend with our friends, John and Kirsten.  I left him with this recipe from and asked him to make it and then put it in the crockpot to finish cooking so that we could enjoy it for dinner when we returned home.I forgot to tell him to reduce the amount of water for the crockpot version. So the gravy was not very thick.  We chose to just use a slotted spoon and a little ladle for the au jus.  You can halve the amount of water or use a roux to thicken the gravy if you prefer.

When we walked in the door our mouths started watering.  It smelled delicious and we couldn't wait for Frank, who was returning Melody to her mom, to get home so we could eat.  Frank served this up with white rice and corn.  This is no surprise, Frank always chooses white rice over brown and corn is the only vegetable he ever makes when he is cooking dinner.  Not that I am complaining.....I am always very grateful that he is always so willing and able to step up to the (dinner) plate.

The recipe was adapted only slightly.  We used 2 lbs of beef instead of 1 and where it called for a bay leaf, Frank read basil (probably because of the name of the dish) and plucked one from my basil plant to add instead of the bay leaf.  Oh.....and, of course, it was made in the crockpot.

Lahma Bil Basal (Beef in Rich Onion Sauce)
adapted from 

2 lbs. beef stew meat
2 T. butter
1 T. canola oil
2 large Vidalia onions, thinly sliced
2 chicken bouillon cubes
1 bay leaf (or basil leaf works too LOL)
salt and pepper to taste
1 1/2 c. water ( I would lower this to 3/4 c for the crockpot)

Melt the butter and oil in a large skillet over med high heat.  Season the beef with salt and pepper. Add the beef to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally until lightly browned.  Transfer to a slow cooker along with the onions, bouillon cubes, water and bay leaf.  Set on low and cook for 6-8 hrs. Print Recipe

More Enjoyable Egyptian Eats