This could be your New Year’s Eve good luck meal!
Hoppin’ John is a Carolina rice and pea dish made with either red peas or cowpeas. The recipe can be traced back to roots in West Africa. There are a lot of variations but basically peas and rice are the main ingredients. I’ve add some bell pepper, onion and garlic; a little ham hock and fried/crispy pork belly never hurt a recipe.
Most recipes call for Carolina gold rice but I could not find that; maybe I’ll have to check out Amazon or put it on my list of things to look for when we go to “the city”.
Awhile back I used these red peas to do a pea and grits recipe which was quite good also. I think the next time I make Hoppin’ John I will saute’ some fresh jalapeno in with the onions and bell peppers for a little added heat. I think the recipe can also benefit from some sliced celery. Really, you can add just about anything. Maybe a sliced smoked sausage in place of the pork belly would add more spice.
I love these little chops!
What’s not to love about these cute little lamb chops; a very tender piece of meat, a beautifully Frenched bone and they look just like little “meat lollipops”. They make a perfect appetizer or several for a meal. For an appetizer these little lollipops can be eaten with your hands; no knife and fork needed. And, who doesn’t like eating meat off the bone?
When my mother use to fried bread pork chops or pork steaks, my favorite part was what was left on the bone and I couldn’t wait to eat that part of the chop/steak. We never had lamb growing up, never; and I guess that’s why it took me well into my adulthood to even try them. I have to say that I don’t buy them often unless I’m at Costco and then I will pick up a couple of packages and throw them in the freezer for something special I may be doing.
These would be great added to your holiday celebrations. My mouth is watering just thinking of making these again. I may be experimenting with some different sauces and dips for this little tidbits of juiciness.
A pasta dish to warm your belly on a cool Fall night.
I hope wherever you are living you are enjoying some cooler/colder weather. Even here in Texas we have cooled down considerably since all those 100° days of this past summer. Here in our area it may be cool/cold one week and warmer the next so you just never know what to expect. So as this recipe post it is in the 70’s but next weekend our highs are in the 50’s. Whatever the temperature, I think you will enjoy this dish.
Cooler temperatures have me wanting to make some good pasta dishes and since I have a pantry full of beautifully shaped pastas I will definitely be doing that. Usually, if I ask my husband what he wants on his pasta he says “olive oil” and cheese. BUT, I always convince him of a dish that is a little more interesting that pasta and oil. The pasta I used in this recipe just happened to be another one of my giant pastas I picked up and World Market.
The cold weather is here! Time for soup.
I love cold weather better than hot weather and the reason is I love making soups. After living in Texas for over 30 years now I decided long ago that you can’t wait for it to turn cold to have a reason to make a good belly warming soup; you just have to go for it and if you have to, turn your AC really cold and you will think its one of those winter months that’s begging you to make soup.
There are almost thirty soup recipes posted to this blog so when you are wanting a one pot dinner, take a look at my archives. I’ve been making clam chowder for years. My sister, Terry, and I have always used the same recipe that was suppose to be from a Noah’s Ark restaurant in St. Charles, Missouri. We thought it was easy and a no-brainer of a recipe; all Cambell’s canned soups that we would add clams and a bottle of clam juice. We would use a can of clam chowder, cream of celery, cream of onion, and cream of potato soups and then add some milk and the clams and bottle of juice. Well, it was/is easy but you have all those “canned” not homemade soups. Try it sometime. If you have all these soups in your pantry and you are rushed for dinner some night you can throw this together in a matter of minutes. I also use to add half a stick of butter to the soup pot. It’s good but nothing like a nice homemade pot of soup.
P-P-P-P’s – Peas Please!
I’ve always loved peas (maybe not English peas when I was a kid); black eyed, purple hull, field, lady, cream, and of course snow and sugar snap. The first peas are legumes but still a pea in my book My dad use to grown black eyed, purple hull and field pieces and my mother would mix them all together when she cooked them. I don’t grow my own peas but sometimes I will buy a can of each, drain and rinse and mix them together; I love the different shapes and colors together
The red pea is a variety I’ve never tried and recently ordered a package of Sea Island Red Peas from Amazon and after looking at several recipes, I knew what I was going to serve with them. Some good barely cheesy grits, topped with the red peas/gravy and topped with some crispy pork belly chunks. I’m making Hoppin’ John this week using the remainder of my bag of peas. Hoppin’ John is a dish I’ve never made before so I’m anxious to make it and maybe have a good crusty bread instead of cornbread.
I spend a lot of my time off from cooking at the brewery looking at recipes. Can you believe that? After helping in the kitchen four days a week; I still want to look at food? Either I’m searching my favorite wineries for recipes or watching food shows or movies about food.
Cooking for company is something I love to do and hope to get back to doing that. I can spend hours trying to pick out the perfect menu; not to fussy (just yet) and not too very complicated (although I do like a challenge) just a perfect meal to enjoy with friends and family. I also think it is fun to get guest involved in the cooking, only if they are into that sort of entertainment. And, I can’t wait to have my first tea party. I should say “tea” because tea party makes me think of old ladies in hats and I’m definitely not a “hat” person. So, if you are ever invited to “tea” you know you do not have to wear a hat.
Nice little app for your guest.
Don’t you just love using apples in recipes this time of the year? Fall weather is just begging for something homemade from apples whether it is something as simple as sautéed apples, an apple cake, apples cooked with your pork roast or as in this recipe a delicious appetizer made with pork and apple as two of the main ingredients.
Once I went on a field trip with one of my kids when we lived in Chicago (had to be one of the boys because my daughter was only about 3) and we went to an apple orchard somewhere in the north Chicago area. All I remember about that trip was some kid getting hit on the head with a falling apple and we got to see cider/juice being made in the mill at the orchard.
My favorite apple use to be Jazz but I don’t see those in the market right now. I like just about any apple that is juicy and tart and especially crisp. Delicious apple has to be my least favorite of all apples; just don’t see how a mealy soft apple appeals to anyone.
Absolutely the best salad ever!
Roaming around some of my favorite sites from wineries I came across this salad and I have to say it has become one of my all time favorites. I couldn’t decide whether to post this or not but then decided I would hate for you to never taste the combination of all these ingredients.
Frisee which I have always called “scratchy throat lettuce” mixed with peppery arugula, some haricots verte, toasted almonds, some fresh peaches, and I added the avocado tossed with a wonderful dressing makes a salad that I won’t easily forget and it will be top of my list to prepare for dinner guest. If peaches are out of season I would try some apple, pear, or fresh figs.
The night I made this the kids came over for dinner and I actually had thirds on this salad. Usually I’m doing good to finish the salad I have on my plate.
A use for leftover Charcuterie meats.
After making my charcuterie board on our girl’s trip to Waco, there was quite a bit of meat left over and I just threw it in the freezer when I got home thinking I might use if for our snack one night while having our “front porch cocktails”. Then recently when I was at Cost Plus World Market I bought several of their pastas. Ya know, buying different pastas is my weakness. Well, they had a giant fussily pasta that I thought would go perfect with my baby (the size of your little finger) zucchini that I picked up at Trader Joe’s. And the results were amazing.
I’m only using the prosciutto and the pancetta out of the meats. I wasn’t sure how frying and browning salami would work and I knew I wouldn’t like the mortadella. When I make this again I will have the pancetta sliced a little thicker so I can cube it and then cut the pancetta thin and in threads.
Perfect for your Labor Day backyard party.
The night we made this there was only the two of us. As you can see in the picture, we could have feed at least 4 extra people. Where were you?
This isn’t actually a “mixed grill” but I didn’t know what to call it. I had saved the basic ingredients from a Food Network recipe I had seen but then decided to go off road and add a lot of other things to the recipe. Usually a mixed grill has several kinds of meats and I only had my Eckerman’s Smoked jalapeno Sausage with Cheese and besides we didn’t need any other meats.
Good and easy!
A tapa, pintxos, meze (platter), pupu, zakuska, Hors D’oeuvres, canapés, antipasto, amuse bouche, finger food, charcuterie, and even crudites are all words for appetizers from all over the world. Who doesn’t love munching on something while having a great vintage cocktail before dinner?
I love appetizers and cocktail parties. I feel like I have master my cocktail making and I’ve been making appetizers all my married life and that’s 53 years now. I love a good “surprise” amuse bouche from the chef and I’ve never met a tapa or pintxos (I have a few of those on this blog I tried after returning from a Spain trip) I didn’t love. I remember one of my first amuse bouches was from Gramercy Tavern and the waiter brought out a tiny little dish filled with salt and it had a tater tot resting in the middle of the dish. Well, that tater tot was filled with a black tapenade and later after returning home the chef actually scaled down and sent the recipe to me. I still have not made that dish but I will one day soon.
Who says a cobbler has to have fruit in it!
I love cobblers and they are probably one of my favorite desserts especially in the summer when there are so many delicious fruits available; peach, blackberry, mixture of raspberry, blackberry and blueberry – you name it if it has fruit and a crust it will be on my list of favorite desserts.
My sister, Terry, told me about having a pecan cobbler that she liked so I had to start looking for a recipe and when I found one my first thought was “how could chocolate not make this taste even better”. Well, it did and it also made it a richer dessert and if you plan on serving it with ice cream start with a small serving since you can always go back for seconds. I ended up portioning my leftovers into small tin cups and freezing it so if we have a chocolate attack we can go get one and nuke it and add some vanilla ice cream.