Deviled Potato Salad

This is Hubby’s favorite. I don’t make it often, but if there’s something that screams the words “summer”, “picnic” or “holiday” it would probably be this one. I usually just throw the ingredients in and make it it to taste, but I will try my best to give you some more accurate measurements in case you decide to try it. And if you’re a deviled egg fan then you are going to love this potato salad.

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Deviled Potato Salad

3 large potatoes, peeled, cut and boiled

9 eggs, hard boiled

3/4 cup mayo

3 T yellow mustard

1/4 cup dill relish

1 T white pepper

1 tsp salt

2 tsp dill

Please bear in mind that these measurements are extremely adjustable, so be prepared to taste, taste, taste, and adjust, adjust, adjust until you get it just the way you like it.

1. After eggs have cooked and cooled, peel them and separate the whites from the yolks. Chop up the whites and throw into a large bowl along with the cooked and cubed potatoes.

2. In a medium bowl combine the yolks with the relish and mustard. I use a fork to break up the yolk and mix everything together. Use whatever kitchen tool you like to make this mixture creamy smooth (will be lumpy from the relish, of course).

3. Stir in mayo, salt, white pepper, and dill. Taste. Add anything you feel is needed.

4. Fold the dressing into the potato and eggs. If you don’t feel that there is enough dressing you can adjust by adding in a few tablespoons of mayo at a time, then adjust the flavors by adding in a bit of mustard and other ingredients slowly.

5. Taste, taste, taste. Refrigerate until cooled (this helps the mayo infuse with the other flavors) and until ready to serve.

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Parmesan & Chive Quinoa Patties

Wow, these were good! Everyone enjoyed them and I definitely will be making them again. They were the perfect side to my Honey Lime Chicken Kabobs, and just as satisfying as my Rice Fritters but with less mess (always a good thing around here). You should yield about a dozen 2-inch cakes, however size and number will vary.

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Parmesan & Chive Quinoa Patties

2 1/2 cups cooked quinoa

4 large eggs, beaten

1/2 tsp sea salt

6 green onions, sliced thin*

1/3 cup fresh shredded parmesan

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup panko bread crumbs

EVOO

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1. Combine the quinoa, eggs, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir in the chives, onions, cheese, and garlic. *When cutting up the green onions, use the entire thing. Add the panko, stir, and let sit a few minutes. If the mixture is too wet add more panko, if too dry add water.

2. Heat 1 T oil at a time in large skillet over medium high heat. Form your patties into approx. 2 ounce/1-inch circles and place into the pan. Fry until bottoms are considerably browned then flip over and cook the tops. Drain on paper towels.

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Honey-Lime Chicken Kabobs

These kabobs were super delicious, but more than that was the marinade. It was easy to whip up and it made the chicken tender and just plain awesome. Even without the skewers, this would make an excellent grilled chicken meal any way you serve it.

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Honey-Lime Chicken Kabobs

3-4 large chicken breasts

3 T soy sauce

2 T honey

1 T EVOO

juice of one lime

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tsp sriracha*

2 T cilantro, chopped

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1. Place wooden skewers in some water with a pinch of salt. This will keep them from burning while on the grill. I’ve let skewers soak for anywhere from 5 minutes to a couple of hours. There is no right or wrong, just make sure they get some time in the water prior to loading them up with food.

2. In a small bowl combine the soy, honey, oil, lime juice, garlic, sriracha, and cilantro. Mix thoroughly. *I used a heaping tsp of sriracha and it was just the right amount of heat for us, but if you like your dishes to have a little more kick then you can add up to 2 tsp and even some red pepper flakes.

3. Clean and cut up your chicken into the pieces you want for your kabobs. Pour marinade over the chicken and turn to coat. Cover and allow to marinate for at least 1 hour.

4. Skewer the chicken, placing a few vegetables in-between. I used mini bells and mushrooms, but tomatoes and squash are good, too.

5. Grill on medium high heat until done. Makes 6-8 kabobs, depending on how much meat you put on each skewer.

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Vanilla Coconut Rice Pudding

Several months ago Hubby and I went on a mini-vacay to Virginia Beach where we stopped at a Greek restaurant and ate dinner. It was Hubby’s very first ever Gyro! (I know, right? I couldn’t believe it either.) Well, of course he loved it and we went back for lunch the next day. This was during my Gluten-Free February so I ate a huge Greek salad with gyro meat on it and it was divine! But that’s not what this post is about today (sorry to tease you). We also had an awesome Greek-style rice pudding for dessert and ever since I have been craving some rice pudding. Now this isn’t the same recipe by any means but if you’re a rice pudding fan I think you will like this one.

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Vanilla Coconut Rice Pudding

2 cups of cold, cooked rice*

2 cups 2% or whole milk

1 1/2 cups coconut milk (not coconut water)

1 T vanilla extract

pinch of salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1 T powdered sugar

Combine all the ingredients, except the cinnamon and powdered sugar, together in a saucepan and simmer on medium-low heat for about 45 minutes; until thickened. *I like to reserve about 1/2 cup or so of the rice to add in after the cooking process for a little extra chewy factor, but you can cook the rice as you like. Allow to cool and then stir in the cinnamon and powdered sugar. Sprinkle additional cinnamon on top, if desired. Enjoy 🙂 Easy-peasy and super delicious!

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Happy Memorial Day

I hope everyone has been having a wonderful, relaxing, and reflective Memorial Weekend. Like many, many others, we celebrated grill-out style with friends at the lake. The kids played on the jet ski and the boat went out for a spin; there was corn hole (bean bag toss) and other various frivolity; we had hamburgers and hotdogs on the grill and I brought two desserts to share.

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These are not new recipes but worthy of a repost. Easy to make and tote to a gathering, these desserts are always sure to please.

Click on the titles above the pictures and link to their original posts. Try them, you won’t be sorry.

Happy Memorial Day and don’t forget to remember those who have fought for our liberties and freedoms.

Luscious Tropical Dream Cake

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Peanut Butter & Chocolate Crumble

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Handsome Hubby with our friend David.

Handsome Hubby with our friend David.

Lucky Number One with two beautiful girls to hang out with all day.

Lucky Number One with two beautiful girls to hang out with all day.

Number Two playing near the dock.

Number Two playing near the dock.

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Kids everywhere :)

Kids everywhere 🙂

See ya later!

See ya later!

Southwest Chicken Wraps

The other night I was going to a friend’s house for an evening of homemade pesto on pasta, wine, and girlfriends (the best kind of evening!) so I decided to make these easy wraps for all my boys so they would have something for dinner. I know, I’m so nice.

This is a great recipe for when you have leftovers or if you’ve pre-planned a little bit. I knew I was going to make these wraps so I had already poached some chicken breasts and cooked the rice. Then all I had to do was throw everything together and it was ready in no time.

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Southwest Chicken Wraps

1 cup cooked rice*

1 cup cooked & shredded chicken

1 can black beans, drained & rinsed

1 (4 0z) can chopped green chiles

1/4 cup bell pepper, chopped **

1/4 cup red onion, chopped fine

1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

juice of 1 lime

1 tsp chili powder

1 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp garlic salt

1 tsp southwest seasoning

2 cups shredded cheddar

flour tortillas

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Preheat oven to 350* and line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.

Mix rice together with the chili powder, cumin, and garlic salt. *If using precooked rice make sure it is not cold; room temp or even a bit warm is best.

Add the remaining ingredients except for the cheese because you may not use it all, though mixing it into the chicken mixture would certainly not be a crime, so by all means do it that way of you wish. **For the bell peppers I used 3 mini yellow bells. You can use any colors you like.

Arrange cheese and chicken in the center of tortillas and fold in the sides, making a little pillow. Place seam side down on the baking sheet. Bake for about 10 or 15 minutes or just until the tortillas brown slightly.

Serve with avocado, sour cream, salsa, green onions, and tomatoes. Yum! Recipe yields about 6 burrito-sized wraps or a dozen smaller (6 inch) wraps.

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Strawberry Tart with Basil Cream

I love this tart. In fact I just plain ol’ love pastries so any tart is good for me. The best thing about something like this is that the ingredients are minimal and as long as you keep some refrigerated puff pastry in your freezer you can whip something like this up quickly and customize it to whatever fruit you have on hand. I am a sucker for fresh basil so that’s why I made this particular tart but you can mix fresh mint into your cream, or go wild and experiment with spices and flavors. For example, I see an awesome banana tart with fresh cream whipped with cinnamon and nutmeg and drizzled with some caramel or chocolate sauce (or both!) See how easy that was? Now it’s your turn 🙂

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Strawberry Tart with Basil Cream

1 sheet puff pastry, thawed

1 cup heavy cream

4 or 5 T powdered sugar

1/3 cup fresh basil, chopped

1 pint strawberries

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Preheat oven to 350*. Roll out pastry sheet on a floured surface until thin, about the size of a square foot. I do this because I have a great 14-inch square-shaped baking sheet, but you can do a rectangle shape if you like. Trim about an inch off the edges of the sheet and use a little water to build the edges up a bit.

Line baking sheet with parchment paper and place the sheet on top. Make sure you prick the pastry with a fork so the air can flow. If you’ve ever missed this step you’ll know the pastry will balloon up. It’s fixable for this tart but not ideal.

Bake for 20 minutes then allow to cool completely.

While the pastry sheet is cooling you can whip up the cream using a mixmaster or electric beaters with the powdered sugar until it’s set and just beginning to form soft peaks. Gently fold in the basil (save some for sprinkling on top of the tart).

Spreading the cream might be a little hard if it gets too stiff (mine did) and especially if the shell wasn’t pricked with a fork prior to baking and is breaking up (guilty), so I used a small ice cream scoop to place blobs of the cream all over the pastry. Then I used a slightly wet silicone spreader to gently spread the cream out. Mine came out pretty thick but I really liked it anyway.

Slice the strawberries and place them all over the top of the tart. I put mine in rows, overlapping each edge, covering the whole thing. You can put your strawberries on however you like.

Sprinkle any remaining bits of fresh basil on the top.

Enjoy!


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Bourbon BBQ Sliders with Garlic Aioli

Oh my, these little sammies were sooooo very good. I must tell you now that 1 pound of ground beef will only yield 10 (2 oz. each) burger patties, and 10 sliders is just not enough for the four of us. So if you decide to make these awesome sliders, make 2 lbs! The recipe for the bbq sauce and the aioli is plenty for twice the patties. All you have to do is saute a little extra onion, garlic, and peppers.

This recipe is in 3 parts, so I am going to start with the aioli since it will need some time to chill. I recommend any recipe that has lots of mayo in it to refrigerate as long as possible so all the flavors can infuse and there won’t be an overwhelming mayo taste.

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Garlic Aioli

1/2 cup mayo

1 T fresh lemon juice

1/2 jalapeno pepper, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

Combine all the ingredients and refrigerate. *If you have an immersion blender I recommend giving this mixture a quick blending to really get those pieces of jalapeno and garlic minced as much as possible. Also this helps blend all the flavors real well.

Bourbon BBQ Sauce

1 onion, minced

1 jalapeño pepper, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup BBQ sauce

1/4 cup bourbon

1/4 cup brown sugar

Chop up the veggies as fine as possible. If you don’t like much pepper you can use just the leftover half from the aioli. Saute in EVOO and allow a few minutes to cool. Only use about 3/4 of this onion mixture and reserve the rest for the meat.

Combine the onion mixture with the bbq sauce, the bourbon, and the sugar. Taste and add more sugar or bourbon as needed.

Set aside.

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Bourbon BBQ Sliders

1 lb. lean ground beef

1/4 of the onion mixture you made for the bbq sauce

1 pkg fried onion crisps

1 pkg Hawaiian sweet rolls

Add the remaining onion mixture with the meat and combine well. You can even add a few tablespoons of the Bourbon BBQ sauce to the meat but not too much or your burgers will not stay together.

Grill burgers and toast the rolls.

Assemble your slider by putting a small dab of aioli on the bottom portion of the roll, then a patty, topped with a dab or two of bourbon bbq sauce and some fried onions. Place top half of roll on top and enjoy!

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Four Bean Salad

Recently I went to a dinner at a friend’s house where everyone brought sides to go around the main course, and it was there I discovered this awesome bean salad. Now, I know some of you will say this is old news, but to me it’s not and I had to make one of my own and share. I love the flavors of the balsamic mixed with sugar. It’s not too sweet and not too bitter. Just perfect.

There are lots of things you could add into a salad like this, such as onion and bell pepper, but I just wanted to keep this simple so it’s strictly beans and dressing. And really, you could use any combination of beans you’d like.

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Four Bean Salad

1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed

1 can green beans, drained and rinsed

1 can navy beans, drained and rinsed

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

1/4 cup EVOO

1/2 tsp salt

Combine the beans in a large bowl. Whisk vinegar, sugar, oil, and salt until sugar dissolves.

Pour vinegar-sugar mixture over beans and toss well to coat.

Cover and refrigerate over night. Stir several times.

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Cajun Chicken Fritters with Cajun Aioli

These fritters were super yummy, and the best part is with all these flavors you could easily swap the meat out for crab or shrimp or any other fish you like. The aioli definitely made this dish so don’t forget to whip up some and refrigerate for a bit while you’re making your fritters.

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Cajun Chicken Fritters

3 or 4 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded

1 cup flour

1/2 cup cornmeal

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

4 eggs, separated

1 cup buttermilk

1 T butter, melted

1 tsp srirachi or other hot pepper sauce

1-2 tsp cajun seasoning

1 1/2 tsp liquid crab boil

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 cup chopped bell peppers (any colors)

Cooking oil

Cajun Aioli

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1 T grain mustard

1 tsp cajun seasoning

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1. Whisk ingredients for aioli together and refrigerate. *This recipe can easily be doubled or tripled, depending on how much you like.

2. In a large mixing bowl combine flour, cornmeal, salt, and baking powder.

3. In another bowl combine buttermilk, butter, slightly beaten egg yolks, hot pepper sauce, cajun seasoning, and crab boil.

4. Stir to combine the buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture. Add in peppers, garlic, and shredded chicken.

5. Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form and then fold into the chicken mixture completely.

6. Heat cooking oil (about 1 inch) in a dutch oven or heavy skillet, and drop chicken mixture by spoonfuls into the oil, about 4 at a time so they have room to cook and don’t stick together. Flip and cook until golden brown. Drain on paper towel-lined plate.

7. Serve with cajun aioli and something creamy and crunchy like cole slaw.

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