Thursday, August 28, 2008

Charred Corn Guacamole with Corn Chips

My collection of recipes with southwest flavors just grows and grows. I've been anxious to try this one for a couple of weeks but haven't had the occasion until a couple of days ago. It was a hit even with the non-guacamole eaters so you know that made me happy!
Charred Corn Guacamole with Corn Chips is a Bobby Flay recipe, one of my many fabulous finds on Food Network. The instructions for actually grilling the corn is included but I'd like to add a side note:
Tuesday, when I was preparing the side dishes for dinner the remnants of Hurricane Fay brought much needed rain to drought stricken Georgia! Very happy to have the rain but the grilling was impossible. Plan B....I used my Calphalon Griddle to char the corn & start the cooking, brushed the ears with oil before putting onto the hot griddle. I felt they were not as done as I wanted but not to worry. Onto a plate, 3 minutes in the microwave, covering to steam after cooking, leaving until cool enough to handle & cut from the cob. I'm sure that the grilling would've added even more but as it was, we certainly did enjoy and will definitely make again!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

No Worries, continues...

This was Clinton on his own horse.
A beautiful demonstration, unbelievable control, gorgeous animal!

Just wanted to add a few more pics.

Heading back for the 2nd day, hope to have some more tonight!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

No Worries! ...horsemanship by Clint Anderson

A wonderful day of "innovation, inspriration, & instruction", today in Conyers at the Georgia International Horse Park with Clinton Anderson leading the way!

Looking forward to tomorrow &
thanks to Charles & Suzanne for a great day!
And thanks to Jonathan for most of these pics!
(down front & down under)

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Ultimate Mango Salsa

Mango Morning II by Sandra Blazel*

I've made & we've thoroughly enjoyed several salsa recipes that involve a mango! Earlier in the summer when my son Peter & his lovely bride Gloria were giving a bridal shower for his sister, (my daughter) Sara & (now son-in-law) Casey, I needed to make a double batch of to take to the party. So, the birth of this recipe, the combination of two great recipes that I've found on Food Network plus another recipe in a magazine...alas...

The Ultimate Mango Salsa

2 ripe mangoes, peeled and diced
1 cup watermelon, diced small
1 small red bell pepper, seeded and diced
1/2 cup peeled, diced European or English cucumber
1 finely chopped jalapeno
1 inch fresh ginger root, grated or minced
1/3 cup diced red onion
20 blades fresh chives, finely chopped
lime juice
1/3 cup roughly chopped cilantro leaves

Salt and pepper

Combine the mango, watermelon, cucumber, jalapeno, ginger root, red onion, chives, lime juice and cilantro leaves and mix well. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Use as a condiment to chips, the Rice & Black Bean Salad recipe, also on this blog, along side your favorite grilled chicken, shrimp or fish! ....which brings me back to Tortilla Soup! I now have a new addition to this recipe; adding a can of black beans & the kernals from 2 ears of corn gave this already great recipe an added bit of color, texture, flavor and took it to the next level....making a note to self AND in my recipe...

*Sandra suggests pouring the salsa over a block of cream cheese and spread that on crackers as is sometimes done with chutney. Great idea from this etsyian in beautiful Hawaii.

Aloha and Mahalo, I hope you all enjoy!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Delicious, Nutritious AND Economical Dinner!?!

I'm always looking for all of the above and have to please the less adventurous male eaters in the house but stumbled upon a keeper! We've had black beans & rice before but the addition of the corn and spices, cumin and coriander, update this classic combination.
For me, this was dinner, the salad and watermelon, of course! For the guys, they had to have a serving of meat--- tonight it was pork chops for them, but this salad can stand alone as a complete protein---delicious, nutritious AND economical.
Rice, Black Bean, and Corn Salad

2 cloves garlic
2 onions
2 ears of corn
1 1/2 cups water
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspon ground coriander
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2/3 cup long-grain rice (not converted)
1 1/2 cups drained canned black beans
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons lime juice

Mince garlic and finely chop enough onion to measure 1 cup. Cut enough kernels from cob to measure 1 1/2 cups.

In a small heavy saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, bring water to a boil with garlic, onion, cumin, coriander, and season with salt and pepper. Stir in rice and cook, covered, over low heat 15 minutes. Stir in corn and cook, covered, 3 minutes, or until water is absorbed and rice is just tender. Fluff with a fork and transfer to a large bowl to cool completely.

Rinse and drain black beans. Stir cilantro into rice with beans, lime juice, and season with salt and pepper.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Lemon Square

I finished this little project this morning & hoped to have a new listing in my etsy shop by early afternoon. Problems uploading my images mean that I've got to wait until my technical help makes his way home for dinner. So....I'll post here, just to show that I did something today! And, just so you're not disappointed if you thought there might be a recipe? Keep reading! It's here too!!!
Lemon Square Yo Yo Pillow
A bright modern lemon print by Alexander Henry combined with an old fashion yo-yo technique will add a cheery punch of sunshine to any room. Yellow buttons accent the center of each circle.

This is a 9.25" little lemon square with finished edges of yellow rick rack & white piping. Back is finished with a flap and a removable insert for easy cleaning. Insert was made of super soft fiberfill and is included.

Creamy Lemon Squares

1/2 cup (1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for the pan

1/2 cup confectioners' sugar, plus more for dusting

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup all-purpose flour (spooned & leveled)

4 large egg yolks

1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk

3/4 cup fresh lemon juice (from about 3 lemons)

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8-inch square baking pan. Line bottom with parchment paper leaving an overhang on two sides: butter paper.
  2. Make crust: Using an electric mixer, beat butter, sugar, and salt until light and fluffy. Add flour, and mix on low just until combined. Press dough into the bottom and 1/2 inch up sides of prepared pan; prick all over with a fork. Bake until lightly golden, 15 to 20 minutes.
  3. Make filling: In a large bowl, whisk together yolks, condensed milk and lemon juice until smooth. Pour over hot crust in pan; return to oven, and bake until filling is set, 25-30 minutes. Cool completely in pan.
  4. Refrigerate until filling is firm, about 2 hours or up to 3 days. Using paper overhang, lift cake onto a work surface; cut into 16 squares, and dust with confectioners sugar.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Back to School

My youngest is now a 4th hard to believe! Isn't it great to have a backpack full of new pencils, crayons, and the classic composition notebook? New NIKE sneakers & don't you know I love TARGET for new school threads?!? Today's lunch won't be the usual sandwich but leftover cheese pizza from Mellow Mushroom---last nights dinner.

These pics are from earlier in the summer in his awesome lemonade stand. The sign was a product of his newlywed-designer-big-sis Sara.

As the bus pulled away this morning I hit the pavement with Charlie & Cesar, back to working on the walk, putting into practice the idea that I'm the pack leader of these 2 canines!

On to the "to-do" list with the house to myself!!!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

It takes a village

and an awesome family & friends to pull off a wedding like this!

Thank you isn't enough for all who helped make Saturday, August 2nd such a fantastic day for my daughter Sara & her new husband Casey.

The picture above in the pasture where the ceremony took place. Antique windows from my daughter-in-law's family property in Cumming, GA set in frames of 2 x 4's, sided with deconstructed wood pallets & scrap lumber. The antique mantel & doors were furnished to us by Ian Keith Henderson at Warehouse Antique Mall, 216 Davis Street, Monroe, GA 30655. He has 2 great shops in Monroe; North building (770)266-6696, South Building (770)207-4976.

The outdoor wedding chapel was built primarily by Sara's dad/my fab. husband, Scott & the groom, Casey with help from little bro, Jonathan, pulling nails with Casey's dad Jeff.

Wedding location at my in-law's in Monroe, GA. They opened their hearts, home, land & life in order to make the dream wedding a reality! I couldn't have hung all those lights without the awesome tractor & its driver! Thanks Charles!!!

Neighbor, Charlene opened her property for parking, church friends Stephanie, Howard & Penny also volunteered their time & energy for the big day. The whole Hanks & Toombs family there & were active participants in so many jobs before & after the event to get the show going & disassemble the aftermath! A million times "THANK YOU!!!" to you all!!! Much love!

In the background but no less appreciated, Mom & Dad helping me make tea & lemonade, moving flower arrangements for delivery, picking up my house while I was in brother Jeff, his wife & my parents stepped in with caring for the young ones during the ceremony & reception. Ron & family for taking care of sound.

More to come! Blogging begins again in earnest!