Seasoned Haddock w/ Mac & Cheese and Baked Potato

September 30, 2014 at 5:03 PM | Posted in fish, Stouffer's, Zatarain's | 2 Comments
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Today’s Menu: Seasoned Haddock w/ Mac & Cheese and Baked Potato




Seasoned Haddock Mac and Cheese 008
Had an early Breakfast and went to the hospital to see my Dad. Looking a lot better and stronger, he should be released sometime this week. Came back home and caught up on laundry and did some house cleaning. Another beautiful day out but wasn’t outside to enjoy a lot of it. For dinner tonight I prepared, Seasoned Haddock w/ Mac & Cheese and Baked Potato.



I had the fillet of Haddock in the freezer so I let it thaw overnight in the fridge. To prepare it I rinsed the fillet in cold water and patted dry with a paper towel. Then sliced the fillet into smaller pieces. I then seasoned it with just a bit of Sea Salt and put the pieces in a Hefty Zip Plastic Bag where I then added Zatarain’s Lemon Pepper Breading Mix. Shook until all the pieces were well coated. Shook off the excess and pan fried them in Canola Oil, frying them about 3 minutes per side until golden brown. Haddock and Zatarain’s Lemon Pepper Mix, the perfect combo. It’s a meaty delicious and mild tasting fish. I think I could eat Seafood everyday!



For one side I tried a new Stouffer’s Frozen Food item, Stouffer’s Classic Mac & Cheese Mac Cups. Frozen individual Mac Cups, just microwave and serve. Finally a great tasting Mac and Cheese in a single serving cup! Tastes great, excellent Cheesy Mac. Then I also had a small Baked Potato that I seasoned with McCormick Grinder Sea Salt and Black Peppercorn. Quite a dinner, have I said how much I love Seafood! For dessert later a Healthy Choice Vanilla Bean Frozen Greek Yogurt.





Zatarain's Seasoned Fish Fri   Lemon Pepper

Zatarain’s Seasoned Fish Fri Lemon Pepper

Zatarain’s Lemon Pepper Fish-Fri

The secret of authentic Southern Style fried fish is the crispy combination of corn flour, spices and lemon juice captured in this special Zatarain’s Frying Mix.
Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 2 Tbsp.

Servings Per Container: Servings per container – 40
Amount Per Serving % Daily Value
Calories: 50
Calories from Fat: 0
Total Fat: 0g 0%
Saturated Fat: 0g 0%
Cholesterol: 0mg 0%
Sodium: 1140mg 48%
Total Carb: 11g 4%
Dietary Fiber: 0g 0%
Sugar: 0g




Stouffers Mac Cup

Stouffer’s Classic Mac & Cheese Mac Cups

Freshly made pasta with 100% real cheddar cheese sauce

Stouffer’s Classic Mac & Cheese Mac Cups are just the right size of delicious Stouffer’s Mac & Cheese.

Stouffer’s Classic Mac & Cheese Mac Cups:
* 100% real cheddar cheese
* No preservatives
* Stouffer’s in a cup


Cajun Salmon Pitas with Ginger Stir-Fried Vegetables and Zingy Crème Fresh

September 30, 2014 at 12:22 PM | Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Homemade With Mess

If I could describe this recipe in three words it would be zingy, fresh and scrumptious – in my eyes it’s a dish that has it all. Now, one might say I am bias as I made it, and you would probably be right but these pitas are stuffed to the brim with juicy salmon, Cajun spices, heaps of vegi goodness, multiple textures and cooling creaminess – now who can argue with that?

Honeymoon 004

Serves 2-4 (makes 4 pita’s or 2 pitas plus extra for your plate)

For the Salmon

  • Juice 1 lime
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp ground coriander
  • Pinch soft brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Salmon Steaks

For the Stir Fry

  • Handful Samphire
  • Thumbsize piece ginger – peeled and grated
  • 6 sprigs asparagus – roughly chopped
  • 6 sprigs purple sprouting broccoli – sliced in half if chunky and roughly chopped

View original post 249 more words

It’s all about the Chicken – Ground Chicken

September 30, 2014 at 5:18 AM | Posted in It's All About the Chicken | 1 Comment
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Ground Chicken

Ground chicken is simply chicken that has been ground or finely chopped. Ground chicken can be prepared at home or it can be bought from supermarkets, grocery stores or butcher shops. Ground chicken is minced or cubed chicken meat preferably from the less tender and less popular cuts of the chicken. Ground chicken or minced chicken is made of finely chopped chicken, minced by a meat grinder. One recipe example using Ground Chicken is Buffalo Chicken Chili.




Buffalo Chicken Chili


1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
2 pounds ground chicken breast
1 large carrot, peeled and finely chopped
1 large onion, chopped
3 stalks celery, finely chopped
5 cloves garlic, chopped
5 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground paprika
sea salt and pepper to taste
3/4 cups Swanson’s reduced sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup hot buffalo wing sauce, Frank’s® REDHOT Buffalo Wing Sauce or to taste
2 (15 ounce) cans tomato sauce
1 (15 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 (15 ounce) can white kidney or cannelloni beans, drained
1 (19 ounce) can red kidney beans, drained

1. Heat olive oil and butter in a large pot over medium-high heat. Place chicken in the pot. Cook and stir 7 to 10 minutes, until chicken is no longer pink. Stir in the carrot, onion, celery, garlic, chili powder, cumin, paprika, and salt and pepper, and cook and stir until the onion is translucent and the vegetables are beginning to soften, 3 to 4 more minutes.
2. Stir in the hot sauce, tomato sauce, crushed tomatoes, and white and red kidney beans. Bring to a boil, and simmer over medium-low heat about 1 hour, until the vegetables are tender and the flavors have blended.



Optional toppings:

Sargento reduced fat shredded cheddar
chopped scallions
Daisy reduced fat sour cream

Ohio festivals – September 25-28, 2014

September 30, 2014 at 5:17 AM | Posted in Festivals | Leave a comment
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A lot of festivals this week!



September 25-28, 2014 51st Annual Barnesville Pumpkin Festival
Barnesville, Ohio
The Barnesville Pumpkin Festival has become a tradition for families and friends who come each year to enjoy one of Ohio’s oldest and most popular festivals. Always held during the last full weekend in September, the Festival includes four days of fun-filled contests, entertainment, tastes, sights and sounds. The festival started in 1963 in the basement of the Catholic Church and has has evolved from a small street fair to a premier event with visitors attending from all over the United States. Both adults and children will enjoy harvest-inspired arts and crafts, home-style foods, entertainment on two stages, a giant weigh-in of champion pumpkins, lots of fun contests and the Giant Pumpkin Festival Parade on Saturday. There is plenty to see and do and, admission is free.

September 26-27, 2014 Annual Ohio Swiss Festival – Sugarcreek, Ohio
Held in Sugarcreek, the Little Switzerland of Ohio, with parades, queen pageant, musical entertainment, rides, 5K Swiss Cheese Chase, cheese auction, cheesemaking contest, Steintossen stone throwing, yodeling Swiss cheese eating and Swiss costume contests. Sample award-winning wine and cheese from our local artisans throughout the festival.


September 27, 2014 32nd Annual Country Applefest – Lebanon, Ohio
The streets of historic downtown Lebanon will be filled with homemade crafts, great food and entertainment. Enter the apple bake off contest.

September 27, 2014 Community Chocolate Festival – Dayton, Ohio
(no website)
The theme for this year’s festival is Tropical Chocolate Paradise. Private and commercial vendors will provide a variety of themed chocolates for festival guests. Live music and entertainment on stage throughout the day plus Children’s Play area, Games and Prizes, and a Chocolate Recipe Contest add more fun to the event. Live music and entertainment will be available on stage throughout the day. The festival is sponsored by Faith and Friends The Chocolate Festival will be held in the Montgomery County fairgrounds coliseum.


September 27-28, 2014 35th Annual Germantown Pretzel Festival
Germantown, Ohio
Fall festival held on the fourth full weekend in September, since 1980, featuring handcrafts, good food, and free entertainment with live music & shows, baked goods & pretzels!


September 27-28, 2014 51st Geneva Grape Jamboree – Geneva, Ohio
Celebrates the harvesting of the local grapes. Taste freshly squeezed grape juice, wine, and various other grape products. All grand-stand entertainment, including the grape stomping contest, is free. Miss Grapette is featured in the two giant parades each afternoon. Rides, crafts, food, and other concessions pack the downtown streets during this grape filled weekend.

Kitchen Hint of the Day!

September 30, 2014 at 5:15 AM | Posted in Kitchen Hints | Leave a comment
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Bacteria love eggs, so if you find a cracked egg in the carton, throw it out; it is probably contaminated. The refrigerator shelf life of eggs is about five weeks from the “sell by” date.

Chicken Breast Strips w/ Cut Green Beans and Mashed Potatoes

September 29, 2014 at 5:16 PM | Posted in Bob Evan's, greenbeans, JB's Fatboy Sauces and Rub, Pilgrim's Chicken | Leave a comment
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Today’s Menu: Chicken Breast Strips w/ Cut Green Beans and Mashed Potatoes



Pilgrim Chicken Breast Strips 004
They say we have another beautiful week of weather ahead, bit warmer during the days but no humidity. It was 55 degrees this morning and sunny. Had a light Breakfast, Healthy Life Whole Grain English Muffin topped with Smucker’s Sugarless Blackberry Jam. My Dad is doing better, barring any setbacks he should be home sometime this week. So for my dinner I wanted a hot meal but I wanted one that was easy to prepare. So tonight its Breaded Chicken Breast Strips w/ Cut Green Beans and Mashed Potatoes.


Nothing easier and more delicious than Pilgrim’s Southern Style Breast Strips, it’s always a great go to when you want that easy to prepare meal! It’s the best Frozen Chicken that I’ve found by far. Very easy to prepare; Preheat oven to 350° F. Arrange frozen chicken breast fritters in a single layer on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes until no pink remains or an internal temperature of 165° F as measured by use of a food thermometer placed in the thickest part of the chicken breast fritter. Chicken is served! As I said it’s some of the best frozen Chicken you can find! Excellent seasoned breading and very meaty, and easy to prepare. Served it with a side of JB’s Fat Boy Sticky Stuff BBQ Sauce.


For one side I heated up a can of Del Monte Cut green Beans. Then I also prepared some Then I heated up some Bob Evans Mashed Potatoes, just microwave and done. I also had a slice of Healthy Life Whole Grain Bread that I buttered with I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter. For dessert later a Healthy Choice Dark Fudge Swirl Frozen Greek Yogurt.






Pilgrim’s Southern Style Breast Strips
Pilgrim’s Southern Style Breast Strips

Pilgrim’s Southern Style Breast Strips evoke memories of growing up in a sleepy southern town. The crickets chirping, the moss hanging from the trees, the air humid and everything moving slow in the heat. And your grandmother’s delicious home cooking brought the entire family around the table on the weekends.

Our Southern Style Breast Strips feature a juicy piece of chicken with a breading just right to deliver that southern flair. Our special blend of spices and seasonings with the whole muscle goodness of white breast meat will please kids and old-timers alike.


Ideal as:

Lunch or Dinner Entrées
Crowd Pleasers


Cooking Instructions:

Oven: Preheat oven to 350° F. Arrange frozen chicken breast fritters in a single layer on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes until no pink remains or an internal temperature of 165° F as measured by use of a food thermometer placed in the thickest part of the chicken breast fritter.

Fryer: Heat oil to 350° F. Fry frozen chicken breast fritters for 6 minutes or an internal temperature of 165° F as measured by use of a food thermometer placed in the thickest part of the chicken breast fritter.

Due to variations in equipment, heating times and/or temperature may require adjustment. DO NOT MICROWAVE.


Nutritional Guide
Serving Size: 4 oz. (112g)
Calories per Serving: 190

Servings per Container: About 8
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 6 g 9 %
Cholesterol 40 mg 13 %
Sodium 940 mg 39 %
Total Carbs 17 g 6 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g 4 %
Sugars 1 g
Protein 17 g

Ohio Festivals – September 24-27, 2014 Apple Butter Making Week

September 29, 2014 at 9:03 AM | Posted in Festivals | Leave a comment
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September 24-27, 2014 Apple Butter Making Week
Sauder Village, Archbold, Ohio

The aroma of apples and spices mixed with wood fires and falling leaves signals a change of season and apple butter making at Sauder Village. Produced in the fall as a way to preserve part of the apple crop, apple butter was historically a community project – bringing families and neighbors together each fall. Guests can watch as we boil the cider down, add the thinly sliced apples and then cook the homemade apple butter in copper kettles over an open fire. There will be cider pressing and other apple-themed activities as well as homemade apple dumplings, pies and other treats to enjoy! Enter a homemade pie in our pie baking contest on Saturday.

“Meatless Monday” Recipe – Vegetable Bolognese

September 29, 2014 at 6:37 AM | Posted in Meatless Monday, vegetables | Leave a comment
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This week’s “Meatless Monday” Recipe is Vegetable Bolognese and it comes from the PBS website ( If you’ve never checked out the Recipes on the PBS site, check them out!

Vegetable Bolognese

This vegetable Bolognese recipe is made with mushrooms, carrots, and red bell pepper in replace of meat for an equally filling meal.PBS3
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 shallot, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
7 to 8 cremini mushrooms, diced
2 carrots, peeled and grated using a box grater
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1/4 teaspoon dried majoram
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
2 sprigs of fresh thyme
1 teaspoon salt
Pinch of crushed red pepper
1 (15-ounce) can of diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan-Reggiano, plus more for garnish
1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 pound of dried pasta
Italian parsley, for garnish


To a large pot, heat two tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the shallot. Cook until the shallots turn translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic, mushrooms, carrots, red bell pepper and spices: marjoram, oregano, fresh thyme, salt and crushed red pepper.
Next, pour in the can of tomatoes. (If you’re using a can of cherry tomatoes, take the back of your spoon and crush them.) Add 1/2 cup (you can eyeball this measurement) of water to the empty tomato can, swishing it around so you get all of the remnants of tomato juice; pour the tomato water into the pot and stir. Bring the tomato sauce to a slight simmer and then turn the heat down to low. Cover the pot and cook for 20 minutes, stirring frequently. At the 20 minute mark, stir in the tomato paste, balsamic vinegar, Parmesan-Reggiano and a splash or two of water, if it’s cooked down a bit too much. Cover the pot once more and cook for an additional 10 minutes, until the sauce is fragrant and has thickened slightly. (If at any time the sauce becomes too thick, you can simply add a bit more tomato paste and a 1/4 cup of water or veggie stock.) Right before tossing with the pasta, add the butter and mix until melted.
Meanwhile, boil some salted water and cook the pasta per the box’s instructions. (Mine told me 10 minutes exactly.) Toss the pasta with a few tablespoons of sauce and serve with a few spoonfuls of Bolognese on top. Garnish with more Parmesan-Reggiano and a sprinkle of Italian parsley.
Yield: 4 servings

One of America’s Favorites – Gooey Butter Cake

September 29, 2014 at 6:34 AM | Posted in One of America's Favorites | Leave a comment
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A slice of Gooey butter cake, garnished with powdered sugar and raspberries.

A slice of Gooey butter cake, garnished with powdered sugar and raspberries.

Gooey butter cake is a type of cake traditionally made in the American Midwest city of St. Louis. Gooey butter cake is a flat and dense cake made with wheat cake flour, butter, sugar, and eggs, typically near an inch tall, and dusted with powdered sugar. While sweet and rich, it is somewhat firm, and is able to be cut into pieces similarly to a brownie. Gooey butter cake is generally served as a type of coffee cake and not as a formal dessert cake. There are two distinct variants of the gooey butter: a bakers’ gooey butter and a cream cheese and commercial yellow cake mix variant. It is believed to have originated in the 1930s.

The St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission includes a recipe for the cake on its website, calling it “one of St. Louis’ popular, quirky foods”; the recipe calls for a bottom layer of butter and yellow cake batter, and a top layer made from eggs, cream cheese, and, in one case, almond extract. The cake is dusted with confectioner’s sugar before being served. The cake is best eaten soon after baking it. It should be served at room temperature or warm.

The cream cheese variant of the gooey butter cake recipe, while close enough to the original, is an approximation designed for easier preparation at home. Almost all bakeries in the greater St. Louis area, including those at local grocery chains Schnucks and Dierbergs, use a slightly different recipe based on corn syrup, sugar and powdered eggs—no cake mix or cream cheese is involved.


A legend about the cake’s origin is included in Saint Louis Days…Saint Louis Nights (ISBN 0-9638298-1-5), a cookbook published in the mid-1990s by the Junior League of St. Louis. The cake was supposedly first made by accident in the 1930s by a St. Louis-area German American baker who was trying to make regular cake batter but reversed the proportions of butter[3] and flour.

John Hoffman was the owner of the bakery where the mistake was made. The real story is there are two types of butter “smears” used in a bakery: a gooey butter and a deep butter. The deep butter was used for deep butter coffee cakes. The gooey butter was used as an adhesive for things like Danish rolls and stollens. The gooey butter was smeared across the surface, then the item was placed in coconut, hazelnuts, peanuts, crumbs or whatever was desired so they would stick to the product.

Hoffman hired a new baker that was supposed to make deep butter cakes, but got the two butter smears mixed up. The mistake wasn’t caught until after the cakes came out of the proof box. Rather than throw them away, Hoffman went ahead and baked them up. As this was around the Great Depression that was another reason to be thrifty. The new type of cake sold so well, Hoffman kept producing them and soon, so did the other bakers around St. Louis.

Another St. Louis baker, Fred Heimburger, also remembers the cake coming on the scene in the 1930s, as a slip up that became a popular hit and local acquired taste. He liked it well enough that Mr. Heimburger tried to promote Gooey butter cake by taking samples of it with him when he traveled out of St. Louis to visit other bakers in their shops. They liked it all right, but they couldn’t get their customers to buy it, with reactions tending to regard it as looking too much like a mistake, and “a flat gooey mess”. And so it remained as a regional favorite for many decades.


Many St. Louis area grocery stores sell fresh or boxed gooey butter cakes. Haas baking sells a widely distributed, square and packaged version in a box that depicts a colorful, if anachronistic scene of aviator Charles Lindbergh’s plane the Spirit of St. Louis flying past downtown St. Louis, the Gateway Arch and the modern cityscape in clouds. Independent or family bakeries make gooey butter cakes, from a time when there were still many neighborhood corner German and Austrian American bakeries in St. Louis, in neighborhoods like Dutchtown, Bevo Mill, and the Tower Grove area, and others. There are now several businesses that specialize in different flavors of gooey butter cake and sell them in coffee shops, or to walk in customers, or by order or shipment.

Panera Bread Company (original name: St. Louis Bread Company) makes a Danish with a gooey butter filling for the St. Louis market. More recently, Walgreens sells wrapped, individual slices of a version of St. Louis gooey butter cake as a snack alongside muffins, brownies, and cookies.

Gooey butter cake is now widely available outside of the St. Louis area, as Walmart has been marketing a version that it calls Paula Deen Baked Goods Original Gooey Butter Cake. However, Walmart calls it “Paula’s signature dessert” and makes no mention of its St. Louis origin.

Modern versions of this confection, originally sold as a breakfast pastry or “coffee cake”, have shown up on upscale restaurant menus across the Midwest and even the West coast. The first such interpretation is believed to have happened in 1991 at a small fine dining restaurant located in Springfield, Missouri. The restaurant, called Clary’s after the surname of the two brothers who originally opened it, offered their customers a blueberry version of the gooey butter cake with vanilla bean ice cream and blueberry sauce. The dessert was originally called Gary’s Favorite after Gary Tombridge, a friend of co-owner James Clary, served the chef a raspberry flavored gooey butter cake after dinner at Tombridge’s home. The chef remarked what a wonderful pastry it was and wondered why no one had ever served it as a dessert. The dessert, along with Clary’s signature souffles, became a staple at the eatery. Clary left the restaurant business in 2008 but says he still serves the gooey butter cake to friends and catering clients. The sweet dessert can now be found on many restaurant menus including the popular Kansas City chain Ya Ya’s, Murray’s in Columbia, Missouri, and even as far as Seattle, where The Five Spot serves a pumpkin version of the classic pastry.


Kitchen Hint of the Day!

September 29, 2014 at 6:30 AM | Posted in Kitchen Hints | Leave a comment
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When adding raw eggs or yolks to a hot mixture, be sure to mix part of the hot mixture into the eggs, and then gradually add this new mixture into the hot mixture. Called”tempering”, it may be extra work, but it makes the eggs less likely to curdle and separate.

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