Sunday, November 29, 2009

Pork Loin with Red Pepper Sauce

This is a great simple recipe from Cooking Light - Fresh Food Fast cookbook.
  • 4 (4-ounce) boneless center-cut loin pork chops
  • 2 tsp steak seasoning
  • Olive oil-flavored cooking spray
  • 1 cup bottled roasted red bell peppers, drained
  • 1 chipotle chile, canned in adobo sauce (I used 2 - we like spice)
  • 2 T. Water
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin

  1. Sprinkle pork evenly with steak seasoning. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pork with cooking spray. Add pork to pan; cook 4 minutes. Turn pork over; cook 3 minutes
  2. While pork cooks, place bell peppers and next 3 ingredients in a blender or food processor and process until smooth. When pork is done, remove pan from heat. Remove pork from pan; cover and keep warm.
  3. Add pepper mixture to the pan; return pan to medium heat. Cook 1 to 2 minutes stirring often. Spoon 2 T. sauce onto each of 4 serving plates. Top each with a pork chop.

Calories 194, Fat 9 g, Protein 23g, Carbs 1.7g

Friday, November 27, 2009

Abby's Kentucky Pecan Pie

Back about 1970 I found this recipe in the paper from "Dear Abby". Are you old enough to remember Abby? I have probably made this recipe about 80 times since then. It is the best Pecan Pie I have ever had. Enjoy. It is very, very easy!

Kentucky Pecan Pie

  • 1 C. White Corn Syrup
  • 1 C. Dark Brown Sugar
  • 1/3 tsp. Salt
  • 1/3 C. Melted Butter
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla
  • 3 Eggs, Slightly Beaten
  • 1 Heaping Cup Pecans

Combine syrup, sugar, salt, butter, vanilla and mix well. Add slightly beaten eggs. Pour into a 9 inch unbaked pie shell. Sprinkle pecans over all. Bake in 350 degree oven for approx. 45 minutes.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Mango and Avocado Salsa

2 Ripe mangos, peeled and chopped
1 Large avocado, peeled and chopped
1 Medium red onion, diced
2-4 Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
Juice of 2 limes
Salt and Pepper
Optional: 1 Jalapeno, stemmed, seeded and minced

Mix all but the lime juice and then squeeze the lime juice over all. Stir gently and chill.

Serve with chicken or fish. Or serve with tortilla chips for an unusual flavor.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Jalapeno Chutney

If you are like us, you put a pepper plant or two out in the spring and then you get more peppers than you know what to do with. They are so easy to grow. Usually Kirby just slices and pickles them but I wanted something more so he made me this wonderful chutney. We put it on everything - but the best is a grilled chicken breast or a nice pork loin.

4 medium fresh mangos
3/4 cup raisins
1/2 cup light brown sugar
3 cups white sugar (Kirby used Splenda)
1/2 tablespoon fresh garlic, minced
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup vinegar (white works well)
1 tablespoon ground fresh ginger or 1/2 T. dry ginger
1 - 2 cups diced fresh jalapenos
1 tsp. salt
1/2 T pepper

Peel the mangos and remove from the pit. Chop into chunks. Place all ingredients into large pot. Bring mixture to boil and continue boiling uncovered for 25 minutes.

Mixture will thicken slightly as liquid is reduced.

Pour into large bowl of food processor, pulsing briefly to coarsely mince the chutney before serving. Makes approximately 4 cups.

Serve over chicken, pork or turkey. Can be refrigerated for 2-3 weeks.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Mexican Bean and Pasta Salad

This is a recipe that I developed while living on our boat in Mexico. I began with a great recipe for Bean Salad that had given me 30 years or so ago and I decided to try to "spice it up" just a little. When I make it I seem to just put it all in a bowl and mix it up so I never wrote down any amounts. I will take a stab at the amounts here but please experiment for your own tastes.

For the dressing mix together the following in a large bowl and stir well to dissolve the sugar.
1/2 C. Salad Oil
1/2 C. Vinegar (white or cider work well)
3/4 C. Sugar
1/2 tsp salt, pepper
1-2 tsp Cumin depending on taste

To the dressing add the following -
1 can Black Beans drained and rinsed
1 can Kidney Beans drained and rinsed
1 can Garbanzo Beans drained and rinsed
10 - 16 oz Salad pasta or Elbow Macaroni, cooked, drained and rinsed with cold water
2-3 stalks of celery, chopped
1 Green Bell Pepper, chopped fine
1 cup Cilantro (picked from the stems, washed and dried)
4-5 Roma (Plum) tomatoes chopped

Mix it all together and refrigerate for at least 2 hours to allow the flavors to meld. You can leave out an item here and there or make substitutions but the cumin, tomato and cilantro are must haves.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Rhubarb Crisp

This is a great old summertime recipe that I have been making for years. It is extremely easy and always a hit. Serve it warm over vanilla ice cream.

  • 6 Cup Diced rhubard
  • 1 1/2 Cup Sugar
  • 2 T Water
  • 1 Cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 cup butter

Combine rhubarb, 1 cup of the sugar (reserving 1/2 cup), and water. Turn into a shallow 1 1/2 qt. casserole dish. Combine flour, remaining 1/2 cup sugar, cinnamon and salt. Cut in butter with a pastry blender until crumbly. Sprinkle evenly over rhubarb. Bake at 350 degrees until rhubarb is tender, hot and bubbly, about 50 min. Serve warm over ice cream. Makes 6 - 8 servings.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Red Rice with Chicken

This hearty, well-seasoned dish is budget friendly as well as delicious.

Makes about 6 servings

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 ½ pounds chicken pieces of your choosing

¾ to 1 teaspoon Cajun Seasoning (to taste)

3 large red bell peppers, seeded, cut in strips

1 large onion, cut in strips

8 large garlic cloves, chopped

1 tablespoon dried oregano leaves

1 tablespoon paprika

1 ½ cups long-grain white rice

2 cups (or a little more) chicken broth

2/3 cup cream of tomato soup

1 ½ cups frozen small peas, thawed

1/4 cup parsely, chopped

Heat the oil in a large heavy pot over medium-high heat. Season the chicken with Cajun Seasoning. The 15-minute pre-cook: add the chicken, and cook for 10 minutes, then add bell peppers, onion, garlic and oregano to the pot. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes. Mix in the paprika and rice and stir to coat. Add the chicken broth and tomato sauce. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to medium-low.

Simmer until the chicken and rice are tender and the liquids are absorbed, about 20-25 minutes. Add more broth if the mixture becomes dry during the cooking time. Stir in the peas and parsley and add more Creole Seasoning if desired. Cook until the peas are heated through, about 3 minutes. Serve

NOTE: Since red bell pepper are $1.50 each in my local supermarket, I substitute green bell pepper.

If you choose skinless, boneless chicken pieces, cube them and reduce the pre-cook time from a total of 15 minutes to 5 minutes.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Mole Sauce

Yeild: 2 qts

8 Each Ancho Chilis, Dried
4 Each Pasilla Chilis, Dried
8 Cups Chicken Stock
1/2 Cup Vegetable Oil
3/4 Pound Roma Tomatoes
1/4 Pound Tomatillos, Whole, husked, rinsed, halved
1/2 Each Plantain, peeled, sliced, fried
2 Tablespoons Raisins
1/2 Cup White Onion, sliced
2 Cloves Garlic
1/4 Cup Almonds, whole
1/4 Cup Unsalted Peanuts
1/4 Cup Pecans Halves
2 Tablespoons Pumpkin Seeds, Roasted, raw, green
1 Each Cinnamon Stick
4 Whole Cloves
1/2 Teaspoon Allspice Berries
1/2 Teaspoon Cumin Seeds
1 Each Corn Tortilla, fried
1 Slice French Bread, fried
2 Ounces Mexican Chocolate
2 Teaspoons Brown Sugar
2 Teaspoons Salt
  1. Wipe chiles clean with damp cloth. In large skillet, toast in batches until slightly blistered and aromatic, about 10 seconds. Remove stems, veins and seeds.
  2. Bring stock to boil; add chiles and simmer until soft, about 10 minutes. Remove chiles and continue to simmer stock over low heat.
  3. In the skillet, heat 1/4 cup of oil; fry tomatoes and tomatillos until mixture forms a past. Transfer to a bowl. and reserve.
  4. Give the skillet a quick wash; saute onion and garlic until lightly browned. Add to stock with chiles, plantain and raisins; let cool.
  5. In another skillet, toast almonds until aromatic. Add peanuts, pecans and pumpkin seeds; toast until light brown. Transfer to a bowl; reserve.
  6. In the same skillet, toast cinnamon stick. Add cloves, allspice and cumin and toast 1 minute. Add to nut mixture; let cool.
  7. In batches, blend stock, tortilla and bread in a blender. Add nut mixture and tomato-tomatillo paste; puree until smooth; adding more stock or water if necessary.
  8. In a deep, heavy pot, heat remaining 1/4 cup oil. Add blended mixture from the bowl; bring to a boil. Let liquid reduce 20 minutes, stirring constantly to prevent sticking. Stir in chocolate until melted. The mole should have consistency of gravy. If it is too thick, add more water. Add sugar and salt to taste; simmer 20 minutes, cool. Mole keeps, refrigerated, for one week.
NOTE: Ingredients will soon be available on FoodieAffair.Com. This site is still under construction, but promises to be available very soon.

Enchiladas de Mole Poblano

Serves: 8

1 Cup Canola Oil
24 Each Corn Tortillas
6 Cups Chicken, cooked and shredded
3 Cups Mole Sauce (recipe in Sauce section)
1 Cup Sour Cream
2 Cups Monterey Jack Cheese, shredded
1 Each Red Onion, sliced
  1. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Dip tortillas in oil one at a time briefly frying until soft. Blot with paper towels.
  2. In a separate skillet, warm chicken with mole sauce.
  3. To assemble enchiladas, place 2 tablespoons chicken-mole mixture in center of each tortilla, roll into a log.
  4. To serve, place three enchiladas side by side in center of plate. Pour mole sauce generously over enchiladas; top with sour cream, cheese and red onion.
NOTE: Of course homemade mole is the best, but it is a time consuming project to say the least, and some of the ingredients are hard to find. If you can't find prepared mole sauce in your local supermarket, you can order it on FoodieAffair.Com. This site is still under construction, but it is promised to be up and running soon.

Lovely, Fluffy, Mexican Rice

Serves 6

1 Cup Long-grain White Rice
1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil
1 1/2 Cups Chicken Broth
1/2 Each Onion, finely chopped
1/2 Each Green Bell Pepper, finely chopped
1 1/2 Teaspoons Jalapeno Pepper, chopped
3 5/8 Fluid Ounces Tomatoes With Green Chilies
2 Tablespoons Tomato Sauce
1/2 Each Chicken Bouillon Cube, Knorr's
Salt and Pepper, to taste
1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cumin
1/2 Cup Cilantro Leaves, Whole
1 Clove Garlic, minced
  1. Saute rice in oil over medium heat for bout 3 minutes.
  2. Carefully, pour in chicken broth, and bring to a boil.
  3. Stir in onion, green pepper, jalapeno, tomato sauce, and can of tomato & chilies. Season with bouillon cube, salt and pepper, cumin, cilantro, and garlic.
  4. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to very low. Cook for 20 minutes.
  5. Fluff with fork and garnish with fresh cilantro.
NOTE: Rather than opening a can of tomato sauce only to use 2 tablespoons, you can substitute with a little tomato paste from one of those convenient tubes. The addition of the sauce or paste is mainly for color. Another option is to use Knorr's tomato bouillon with chicken rather than the just chicken flavor called for in the recipe. Yet another option, although I would say the last option you should use, is to use a bit of ketchup.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Almond Biscotti

Recipe Courtesy of Darlene O'Connor Raiente (Bridgeport / Stamford, CT)

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 1/4 cups sugar, divided
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
Dash salt
1/2 cup chopped almonds (toasted)
2 teaspoons milk


In a mixing bowl, cream butter and 1 cup sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla. Combine dry ingredients; add to creamed mixture. Stir in almonds. Line a baking sheet with foil and grease foil. Divide dough in half; spread into two 12-in. x 3-in. rectangles on foil. Brush with milk and sprinkle with remaining sugar. Bake at 375 degrees F for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown and firm to the touch. Remove from oven and reduce heat to 300 degrees F. Lift rectangles with foil onto wire rack; cool for 15 minutes. Place on a cutting board; slice diagonally 1/2 in. thick. Place slices with cut side down on ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes. Turn cookies over; bake 10 minutes more. Turn oven off, leaving cookies in oven with door open to cool. Store in airtight container.

Optional: Melt some chocolate chips over a double boiler and dip cookie in on one side or the whole bottom of the cookie to make it look fancy.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Chicken Calabcita Stew

Serves 4

3/4 Pound Chicken Breasts, cut into strips
Salt and Pepper or Fajita Blend Spice
1 Tablespoon Canola Oil
1/2 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/4 Cup Onions, chopped
7 Ounces Stewed Tomatoes with Chiles
1/4 Teaspoon Pepper
1/2 Teaspoon Cumin Powder
1/2 Cup Sweet Corn, frozen
1/2 Pound Squash, Zucchini, fresh or frozen
1/8 Cup Green Bell Pepper, chopped, optional
2 Teaspoons Chicken Bouillon Powder or 1/2 Knorr's Cube
1 Cup Water*
  1. Salt and pepper chicken strips. Cook chicken in pot until brown on all sides.
  2. Add all other ingredients and bring to a boil.
  3. Lower heat, simmer covered for 15-20 minutes.

* Add 1 - 1/2 cups water to make this into a delicious soup. Add more spice to taste.
NOTE: For the Texas folks, HEB has a Calabacita Blend of vegetables in the frozen section.

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Mexican Cornbread by Paula Dean, Tweeked by Kittencal

This quite possibly might be the best cornbread you will ever have, it bakes out high, light and fluffy, it really should be called a corn cake lol! The jalapenos can be substituted with one small finely chopped green bell pepper, or one 4-ounce can green chilies, drained. Since I prefer the taste of olive oil I used that instead of the melted butter, this is a recipe of Paula Deen's tweeked slightly I think for the better ;-) Posted on by KITTENCAL

My three most trusted recipe sources: Paul Dean, RecipeZaar and most of all Kittencal.

This recipe has 17 5-star ratings to date

45 min | 10 min prep

SERVES 9 -12 , 1 (8x8-in) pan

* 1 cup yellow cornmeal
* 1/2 cup flour
* 2 tablespoons white sugar
* 2 tablespoons baking powder
* 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (optional)
* 2/3 cup half-and-half cream (or use milk)
* 2 large eggs
* 1 1/2 teaspoons seasoning salt or 1/2 teaspoon white salt
* 1/3 cup melted butter or vegetable oil
* 1 small onion, finely chopped or green onion
* 1 (14 ounce) can creamed corn
* 1 cup frozen corn, thawed or drained canned corn niblets
* 1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese
* 2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and finely chopped (or to taste)

1. Set oven to 350 degrees.
2. Butter a 8 x 8-inch or a 9 x 9-inch square baking dish.
3. In a large bowl mix together cornmeal with flour, sugar baking powder, garlic powder, milk, eggs, seasoned salt and melted butter or oil until well blended.
4. Add in onion and creamed corn and thawed corn; mix to combine.
5. Pour half the batter into prepared baking dish.
6. Sprinkle the layer with grated cheese and jalapeno peppers.
7. Pour the remaining batter on top of the cheese and jalapeno peppers.
8. Bake for about 35-45 minutes or until golden on top and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean (baking time will vary slightly depending on the size of pan used).
9. Allow to cool slightly before slicing.

NOTE: Some of the reviewers said the baking time needs to be longer, so test it with a toothpick before you pull it out of the oven.

RESOURCES: Texas Cornmeal and dried Jalapeno peppers will be available soon at

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