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by on May 27th, 2016

Shrimp and Crab Stuffed Pasta Shells


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Stuffed shells perfect for summer get together.

Do you cook more shrimp in the summer or are you like me and cook it year round when you get them on sale. This dish would be great with some lobster thrown in to the mix.

I love shrimp in just about any recipe. I’ve pickled them,  corn dogged them, skewered them, coconut fried them, Bang Banged them, and like Bubba Gump I could go on and on listing the ways I like shrimp.

This recipe just happens to have crab meat in it along with the shrimp. After making this dish I decided that maybe the next time around instead of stuffing the shells this would be great just mixed in with a penne or rigatoni pasta; saves some time stuffing and the taste is going to be just the same.

Sour cream was supposed to go in this dish but my carton container something other than that when I opened it and I was in luck since grandson Thomas had just been for a visit and left behind a carton of plain yogurt. I like the yogurt and would probably use that the next time instead of the sour cream.

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by on May 21st, 2016

Fiesta Catfish with Guacamole

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I had to convince my husband to try this combination.

Sometime back in May with Cinco de Mayo behind us I was thinking about Mexican flavors and how they would fit into a catfish recipe. 

Growing up the only way we ate catfish was fried. In my opinion, that is the best way to eat catfish. Although, lately I have been coating it and baking it in the oven and I have to say it is almost as good as deep-fried. Still crunchy like fried but not nearly as many calories since it isn’t swimming in oil. 

My first thoughts were to put in some Mexican seasonings like cumin and chili powder then I got carried away and added some garlic powder, cayenne and paprika. Very tasty. There were also a few avocados lying around just waiting to be made into some good guacamole so after it’s made and the fish is done I added some to the tops of the crunchy, out of the oven catfish filets along with a sliver of tomato. 

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by on May 15th, 2016

Chocolate Tacos

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A big hit with my bunco group.

Since our May bunco fell the day before Cinco de Mayo we were asked to bring a Mexican themed food. So I did, in dessert form.

Everyone loves tacos, right? We were married when my husband was in his last year of college and I remember we would go and buy tacos for 25 cents each. Were they ever good! And I always served tacos to my kids when they were still at home. What’s not to love — crunchy shell, spicy ground beef filling, some shredded lettuce, tomato and cheese with a spicy taco sauce drizzled over the top.

Have things ever changed. My first fish taco was in LaJolla, CA at a place called George’s at the Cove and since then I have become a taco aficionado. Experimenting with all kinds of fillings, I have made a Pork Belly Taco, Pulled Pork Taco, Fish Tacos, and one of my favorites, Grilled Salmon Tacos with Schirarch Cream. So, you see I have been experimenting with a lot of things other than ground beef; so why not a dessert version.

A few years ago a friend told me about this bed and breakfast she went to in California, the Oak Knoll Inn in Napa (Looks like the Inn has been sold, shucks, we never made it there.) and how beautiful the food was and the owner had a Chocolate for Breakfast Cookbook by Barbara Passino. The book is full of wonderful breakfast items and many, many chocolate recipes. I fell in love with a chocolate taco picture (is that possible?) of a taco full of fruit and topped with a pansy and a big scoop of raspberry sorbet. 

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by on May 9th, 2016

Tipsy Beans

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You may know these as “drunken” beans.

These beans were a fitting side dish for a going away party that we did for our neighbors, Maria and Ricky, one weekend in April and a perfect day for using our outdoor kitchen. Pulled pork sandwiches with cabbage topping, truffled parmesan fries, tipsy beans, coleslaw, and some appetizers

People have been doing drunken beans for years I guess. We grew up eating those baked beans that are loaded with bacon and brown sugar, mustard, ketchup and baked a long time in the oven.

Most recipes for drunken beans just call for pintos but I’ve started using a mixture of beans even in my chili. For these beans I used kidney, black and pinto beans combined. I used a dark beer but any kind of beer will work. The one thing I did wrong in this recipe was to not brown my bacon. Don’t ask me why I didn’t do it. I have always browned the bacon in baked beans or any kind of dish that calls for bacon. I got in a hurry and just threw it in the pan with the onions and it never browned.

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by on May 4th, 2016

Elote Dip

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If you like Mexican corn on the cob, you’ll love this dip.

Coming up blank for an idea for your next cookout? Sometimes I have problems putting together a menu; don’t know why because I have an endless supply of recipes I want to try or to recreate from places I have been or ideas that friends have told me about. Corn of some type is almost always on our menu as a side dish when we bbq.

Corn isn’t actually a vegetable, it’s a grain but I always called it a vegetable because it was one of the few so-called vegetables my kids would eat when they were young; green beans – sometimes, fried okra – of course, no on salads, no on broccoli, spinach etc. So I had to call corn a vegetable so I would feel like I was half-way getting my kids to eat healthy. Of course, now, they eat everything.

Elote Cafe in Sedona is famous for their Elote (corn) appetizer. A friend of mine went there a few years ago and loved the cafe so much they ate there three times. 

Elote corn is sold by street food vendors in Mexico. Usually it will be cook in the husk, the husk will be pulled back and used for a handle to hold on to the corn and the corn will be smeared with butter, mayonnaise, lime juice, chili powder (I add some cayenne too when I make it this way), and sprinkled with some cojita cheese. It is delicious for any summer cookout and if you like that then make some Elote dip. All the same ingredients but cut off the cob and put in a bowl and baked for you to enjoy with some really good tortilla chips.

My favorite corn is yellow corn or even the peaches and cream variety which is yellow and while. The weekend I made this Elote Dip I could only find white corn. If you have a choice go with the yellow variety because it makes a prettier dip and I personally like the taste better.

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