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Monday, January 28, 2013

Red Beans and Rice Monday

So I am still working on this ham. Time to make some red beans and rice.

Husband said, "you've never made red beans and rice??" Well, I have eaten a lot of red beans and rice, but technically NO, I have never made my own. So time for the tradition to make it to my kitchen!

Red Beans and Rice (trial)

1 green pepper, diced
1 onion, diced
3 stalks celery, diced
3 cloves fresh garlic, minced
2 cans kidney beans
2 cups chicken broth/stock
about 1 cup or so cooked ham, diced
2 tbls. creole seasoning (aka Tony's)

sour cream, if you like

Prep your vegetables, etc. and put in the dutch oven. Saute for about 7-10 minutes until slightly soft. Drain and rinse kidney beans. Add all other ingredients to the dutch oven but the rice. Simmer for about 30-45 minutes stirring occasionally. Prepare rice.

Serve red bean concoction over rice...and maybe with a dollop of sour cream. Positive reviews and full tummies.

I will probably continue to tweak this recipe. I think a little thicker would suit our taste, but it was a great start. Also, this is relatively spicy. It was fine for me (I definitely like spice), but the Tabasco fiend added his usual extra spice.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Ham and Tomato Quiche

So I had to do something with some of this leftover ham...enter quiche.

Ham and Tomato Quiche
1 lb. cooked ham, chopped
1/2 onion, diced
3 eggs
4 small tomatoes chopped
1 frozen pie crust
2 tbls. flour
1 cup milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dried parsley flakes
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
pepper to taste

I'm usually pretty liberal with the herbs/spices.

Whisk the eggs with the milk and then add all the other ingredients in a large bowl. Spray the pie plate and cook the pie crust according to the instructions on the box. Pour the mixture into the pie plate and bake in the oven at 375 for about an hour. I think it took a little over an hour in our oven.

All in all, it turned out to be tasty.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Turning over a new leaf

Come on get happy!!!

Yes, I need to change my attitude (yet again). More happy, less worry! I like the above post for its commentary on what happy people do differently. I particularly like the part about "they focus on health." Yes health. Health can be so much more than eating right and exercise. Health encompasses the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of life. This is more of what I am trying to focus on this year. A little introspection, if you will.

Let's all try to remember to be happy about life. What makes you happy???

I'll give you one thing that makes me exceptionally happy. This little beast

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Black Bean Soup

Now I must say that most of my recipes are not originals, but I do adapt them to our personal taste. We do love spicy food in this house so most recipes might have an edge to them, but there is always a way to turn down the heat. Enjoy!

Black Bean Soup (delicious and healthy!)

boneless, skinless chicken breasts (~2 cups cooked, diced)
3 cans black beans
1 can Rotel (we use the HOT Rotel)
1 can green chiles
1 onion
1 jar roasted red peppers
~3 cups chicken stock
chopped parsley or cilantro (your preference)
black pepper
1 tb cumin
1 tb minced garlic
1 tb oregano

sour cream, cheese, crackers or whatever you like for topping!!

I baked my chicken in the oven and diced it.
Chop the onion. Drain red peppers and chop fairly thin.  Drain and rinse black beans. Add all ingredients to the crockpot except chicken and garnish. Cook on high for about 4 hours. Add the chicken in and turn the crockpot to low. Cook for about 15-20 more minutes for the chicken to absorb flavors.

Garnish with parsley and sour cream. Pretty darn good!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Ode to 2012-- Love and Loss

A year. 52 weeks. 365 days. So many things happened in my life this past year. I will describe a brief recap of the year to begin this blog (and give everyone a heads-up to my sometimes crazy life). Brad (my soon to be husband) was promoted at his work, where they started a new company. I found and started a new job in my field of study. (yay!) We got MARRIED!!!! We honeymooned in Belize and absolutely loved it. The Alabama Crimson Tide was on the road to the national championship game! However, with the highest happiness I have ever felt, this year also brought great heartache with Grandma and Grandpa passing. My two other grandparents were also hospitalized around the same time. I was blessed with 4 wonderful grandparents for so long it has been difficult to cope with the loss of two in the same year. The year seems like a blur, yet I will never forget 2012: both happy and sad.

Why the blog?

I want this blog to be a way for me to communicate with others on the web and become a better person through support and inspiration. I want to create a place to grow for myself and for my relationship.

Also, I love to cook. I may frequently post recipes, both triumphs and failures. Brad will be the ultimate sacrificial guinea pig. Do not worry, the man has an iron stomach that begins and ends with Tabasco. I will often be sarcastic, cautiously judgmental and silly. I love to read and I love to write. I am able to say much more in writing than I will ever be able to speak in words.

The reason I would like to embark on this journey is to start a new outlook on life. I want to grow in many areas. I want to give. I want to live. I want to be my best self for me, my husband and that hound dog. I welcome all the comments and criticism that a blog might bring. I have an open mind and sometimes an open heart.

May this blog inspire the readers and the writer...

Always, GRD