Monday, January 19, 2009

Boneless Buffalo Wings...Sort of

Tonight for dinner I made Boneless Buffalo Wings...only with chicken tenders. So I suppose that would make them Boneless Buffalo Tenders? Hey, that has a nice ring to it!

I made them for John really. He loves going to Applebee's during Happy Hour (half price appetizers!) and ordering their classic boneless buffalo wings. But even at half price, those tastey little treats can be expensive. I did a little research online and found a Copycat recipe for them.

I changed very little. I left my chicken tenders whole instead of cutting them into bite sized pieces and I used half Original Louisiana Hot Sauce and half Wing Louisiana Hot Sauce.

They tasted very much like the real thing. In fact, if I hadn't made them myself, I would have thought someone had brought them in from Applebee's.

I think maybe next time I make them, I'll try baking instead of frying them.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

It's Always a Party with Shepherd's Pie

Last night for dinner, John made me Shepherd's Pie. Now you may think you love food, and you may think you have an all time favorite food, but there is no comparison to my love of Shepherd's Pie.

I had never even heard of it until I moved to England and John's best friend, Leon, had us over for dinner. When he told us he was making Shepherd's Pie, I automatically thought of a pie with crust. I pictured something very much like a chicken-pot-pie.

Now for those of you who may not know, I am not a big lover of cheese and not too long ago onions were my mortal enemy. So when he laid a plate full of something covered with browned cheese and several onions spilling out, I was thoroughly frightened and confused.

I politely said, "Oh, what's in this?". Trying with all my might to sound more interested in learning about the dish then terrified of it.

"Well, there's mince (the American translation is hamburger meat), onions, gravy, mashed potatoe, corn, cheese, and peas."

Oh no, peas?! Those tiny little green balls would be the death of me! What kind of country puts all those awful things together?! Well now they are both staring at me, waiting for me to take my first bite of Shepherd's Pie.

Oh and what a bite it was! It was on that fateful day that my addiction for Shepherd's Pie was born. Now I get John to make it for me as often as I can. Last night was one of those delightful times.

Moving away from one beautiful thing to another, Friday was my nephew's first birthday. Yesterday, was his birthday party.

He was very interested in eating the toys on his cake and was quite distressed when my sister took them out of his mouth. He was pleased once again when cake was put into his mouth instead.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Bring on the Chili

I have been craving chili for quite some time. Yesterday, I had a look through the cupboards and realized I have everything I needed to make not just chili but home-made cornbread as well.

While I have no written recipe for chili (I just throw in dice tomatoes, a variety of beans, chopped onion, etc.), I did find a good cornbread recipe.


2/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 2/3 cups milk
2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cornmeal
4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
  1. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Combine the eggs and milk. Combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with egg mixture.
  2. Pour into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking pan. Bake at 400 degrees F for 22-27 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cut into squares; serve warm.

I cut that recipe down to size for my family, but other than that I kept it as is. I thought it was more cakey than cornbready but it was still good. John said it was the best cornbread he'd ever had. In fact that's what he had to eat this morning for breakfast.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Sorry Sound of a Forgetful Blogger

Well I’d say I have been slacking off on my blog entries but I don’t think 5 months would be considering “slacking off”. I think that would be considered abandonment. I promise it was not intentional. When I was in High School, (goodness 4 years ago! Where did 4 years go?!) I was quite the little blogger. I must be growing boring and forgetful in my 20s. Such a sad and terrible age.

My Cooking Friends are responsible for lighting the fire again. Most all of those wonderful ladies have a blog of their own, and they contribute to it often. So why not me? They all lead busy lives and yet they managed to set aside a portion of their time to “the blog”.

Wow, that sounds menacing. “The blog”. And it sure can be. Putting your thoughts, hopes, dreams, out into cyberspace is a very intimidating thing. But I’ve managed to come this far with a few simple posts, why not go all the way!

We’ll pick up where I left off…recipes.

Christmas is barely over so there are many recipes to discuss. I’ll just tell you about my new favorite dessert that has quickly become a family tradition.

It’s officially called “Great Pumpkin Dessert” but the members of my family have deemed it a lesser sounding name, “Pumpkin Cake”. Inferior name, but the taste makes up for it. It’s a recipe I was turned onto by a friend and can be found on the website I’ve made a few changes which I will state in red.

Great Pumpkin Dessert (Pumpkin Cake)

1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree

1 (12 fluid ounce) can evaporated milk

3 eggs

1 cup white sugar

4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (I also sprinkled some cinnamon in)

1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix

3/4 cup butter, melted (I used 1 cup, otherwise not all of the cake mix absorbs it)

1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts (I used about 3 cups of pecans, I just prefer them and a LOT of them)

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9x13 inch baking pan.
  2. In a large bowl, combine pumpkin, milk, eggs, sugar and spice. Mix well, and pour into a 9x13 inch pan.
  3. Sprinkle dry cake mix over the top, then drizzle with melted butter. Top with walnuts.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 1 hour or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. (Mine took about 1 hour 10 mins)

I would have taken a picture if it had lasted that long. Note to self: always take pictures before you serve, BEFORE you serve!