Sunday, October 29, 2017

Chilli, (because it's that time of year)

Like it or not..It's fall, y'all, and you know what that means! Let the chili bonanza begin. One of the worst things about summer is that you look like a total weirdo eating a nice healthyheaping bowl of chili; however, cool weather definitely calls for cozying up with a hot bowl.

But the problem with conjuring up the best chili ever is the fact that what makes a chili truly great is so subjective.

How bout crock pot chilli for starters-


  • 3 lbs hamburger, browned
  • 2 (14.5 oz) cans petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 (30 oz) can tomato sauce
  • 1 (15.5 oz) can chili beans
  • 2 c. water
  • 2 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 4 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp oregano
  1. In a large Crock Pot mix all ingredients together.
  2. Cook on low for 8-10 hours.
  3. Top with sour cream and cheese if desired.
There! Simple...Look for more Chilli recipes soon! Enjoy! Eat Well My Friends!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Asian Quinoa Bowl with Steak and Bok Choy

Okay folk, so I went real exotic with this one...Asian Quinoa Bowl with Steak and Bok Choa..That's a mouth full isn;t it?

As filling as it is delicious, this quinoa bowl deserves a spot in your weekly dinner round-up. Start by simmering quinoa and carrots in a savory Beef Stock. Top cooked mixture with seared, thin-sliced beef and bok choy. Drizzle with a zesty lime-ginger-garlic vinaigrette and garnish with crushed peanuts for a salty, nutty crunch. Prep an extra serving for your lunch tomorrow.


  • 3/4 cup uncooked white quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups Kitchen Basics® Original Beef Stock (Shameless product plug)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped carrots
  • 1 teaspoon grated lime peel
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 Thai bird’s eye chilies, seeded and chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons Thai Kitchen® Premium Fish Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon McCormick Gourmet™ Organic Ground Ginger
  • 1 pound boneless New York strip steaks
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 4 heads baby bok choy, quartered 
  •  2 tablespoons crushed peanuts
  • Rinse quinoa; drain well. Bring stock, quinoa and carrots to boil in small saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer 15 minutes or until quinoa is tender and liquid is absorbed.
  • Meanwhile, mix lime peel, lime juice, sesame oil, cilantro, chilies, garlic, fish sauce, sugar and ginger in small bowl until well blended. Set aside.
  • Season steaks with desired amount of salt and pepper. Heat oil in large skillet on medium-high heat. Add steaks; cook 2 to 3 minutes per side or until desired doneness. Let stand 5 minutes before slicing.
  • Meanwhile, add bok choy to same skillet; stir-fry 3 to 4 minutes or until tender-crisp.
  • To serve, toss cooked quinoa with 1/4 cup of the lime vinaigrette. Divide quinoa among 6 bowls. Top quinoa with sliced beef and bok choy. Drizzle with remaining lime vinaigrette. Sprinkle with crushed peanuts.
There it is...Enjoy! Eat Well My Friends!

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Slow Cooker Shrimp & Chicken Jambalaya

Heyyyyyyyyyyyyyy babies...I'm back with another New Orleans recipe....

My charactors from Escapades, (Shameless Blog Plug) Donnie Ray Alexander , Private Investigator

 and his wife, Attorney Olivia Bennett-Alexander
are having the staff over for dinner tonight...In addition to being a great Attorney,Olivia is quite a cook and this is a meal she learned from his sister...Last time they were in New Orleans..
 So tonight with guests, Attorney Beverly West, her niece..
Her significant other, Nelson East...also and attorney-
and their para legal-
Ms. Josie Boyd...They are about to partake of this delicious meal..

  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs, cubed
  • 1 package (12 to 16 ounces) frozen peppers and onions blend
  • 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 package (8 ounces) ZATARAIN'S® Jambalaya Mix, Original(shameless product plug)
  • 1 pound large shrimp, thawed, peeled and deveined
  • Place chicken, vegetables and tomatoes in slow cooker. Stir until well blended. Cover
  • Cook 3 1/2 hours on HIGH or 7 1/2 hours on LOW
  • Stir in Rice Mix and shrimp. Cover. Cook 30 minutes longer on HIGH or until shrimp turn pink and rice is tender
There it is......I hope you enjoy it as much as they are...Eat well my friends!

Monday, October 9, 2017

Parmesan Rice with Chicken and Tomatoes

Here is another groovy easy to make, one pot dish for the working man or woman...Parmesan Rice with Chicken and Tomatoes..Did I mention that it is creamy too?

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
  • 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 package ZATARAIN'S® Creamy Parmesan Rice Mix  (Shameless Free plug)
  • 1 cup baby spinach leaves
  • Melt butter in large skillet on medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook and stir 5 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. Add tomatoes; cook and stir 1 minute. Remove from skillet. Set aside.
  • Stir water and Rice Mix into skillet. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 25 minutes.
  • Stir in chicken and tomatoes; cover and simmer 5 minutes longer or until rice is tender. Remove from heat. Stir in spinach. Let stand 5 minutes.
That was easy enough, wasn't it? Enjoy! Eat well my friends! Eat Well!

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Cheesey Chicken Black Bean And Rice Chilli

It's Sunday or it could be Saturday...Game Day...You have some friends over the house...What's Not to like about this dish?

  • 2 tablespoons oil, divided
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size chunks
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
  • 1 package ZATARAIN'S® Black Beans and Rice
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook and stir 5 minutes or until no longer pink. Remove from skillet. Set aside. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil, onion and bell pepper to skillet; cook and stir 5 minutes or until tender-crisp.
  • Stir water, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, Rice Mix and chili powder into skillet. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 15 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent rice and beans from sticking.
  • Stir in chicken. Cover and cook 10 minutes or until rice is tender. Remove from heat. Sprinkle with cheese. Cover and let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Serve with Cornbread and a nice Salad.....Enjoy! Eat well my friends!

Monday, October 2, 2017

Braised Chicken Thighs with Lemons

Ahhh welcome to Fall, and Welcome to October...I have a nice comfort food dish for you.....Braised Chicken Thighs with Lemons for your pallet.

Use your cast iron skillet to make this bright and flavorful dish. We recommend serving this chicken and carrot dish over mashed potatoes so that not one drop of broth goes to waste.

  • 8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, trimmed (about 3 lb.)
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper, divided
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter
  • 1 pound large carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into 1 1/2-inch-long pieces
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 4 thyme sprigs
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  •  3 cups hot cooked mashed potatoes (optional)

Step 1
Pat chicken dry with paper towels. Sprinkle chicken with paprika and 3/4 teaspoon each of the salt and pepper. Melt butter in a large enamel-coated cast-iron skillet with lid over medium-high. Place half of chicken, skin side down, in skillet; cook until skin is golden brown, about 6 minutes. Remove chicken from skillet; repeat process with remaining chicken.
Step 2
Add carrots to pan, and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 7 minutes. Add flour to skillet; cook, stirring often, 1 minute. Add broth, thyme, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper; bring to a boil. Place chicken, skin side up, on carrots. Partially cover with lid; reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until chicken is done, about 20 minutes. Remove thyme sprigs. Stir in lemons, and, if desired, serve over mashed potatoes.

Very simple, very easy.....
Enjoy with your choice of wines!

Eat and Drink Well My Friends!

Food Safety Tips
Protect yourself against food-borne illnesses.

1. Use a "refrigerator thermometer" to keep your food stored at a safe temperature (below 40 degrees fahrenheit).

Cold temperatures slow the growth of bacteria. Ensuring that your refrigerator temperature stays at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or colder is one of the most effective ways to reduce your risk of food-borne illness. You can buy a refrigerator/freezer thermometer at appliance stories, home centers (i.e. Home Depot), and kitchen stores including online ones, such as

2. Defrost food in the refrigerator, the microwave, or in cold water... never on the counter!

Perishable foods should never be thawed on the counter for longer than two hours because, while the center of the food may remain frozen, the outer surface may enter the Danger Zone, the range of temperatures between 40 and 140 degrees fahrenheit, in which bacteria multiply rapidly. If you’re short on time, use the microwave or you can thaw meat and poultry in airtight packaging in cold water. Change the water every half-hour so it stays cold and use the thawed food immediately.

3. Always use separate cutting boards for raw meat/poultry/fish and cooked foods/fresh produce.

Bacteria from uncooked meat, poultry, and fish can contaminate cooked foods and fresh produce. An important way to reduce this risk is to use separate cutting boards for raw meat/poultry/ fish, and cooked foods/fresh produce.

4. Always cook meat to proper temperatures, using a calibrated instant-read thermometer to make sure.

One effective way to prevent illness is to use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature of meat, poultry, and egg dishes. The USDA Recommended Safe Minimum Internal Temperatures are as follows:

* Beef, veal, and lamb (steaks and roasts), fish - 145 degrees fahrenheit

* Pork and ground beef - 160 degrees fahrenheit

* Poultry - 165 degrees fahrenheit.

Cook meats like roasts and steaks to lower temperatures, closer to medium-rare, so that they retain their moisture. It is recommended that those who are at high risk for developing food-borne illness (i.e. pregnant women and their unborn babies, newborns, young children, older adults, people with weakened immune systems, or certain chronic illnesses) should follow the USDA guidelines.

5. Avoid unpasteurized/raw milk and cheeses made from unpasteurized milk that are aged less than 60 days.

Raw milk is milk from cows, sheep, or goats that has not been pasteurized (heated to a very high temperature for a specific length of time) to kill harmful bacteria that may be present. These bacteria, which include salmonella, E. coli and listeria, can cause serious illness and sometimes even death. The bacteria in raw milk can be especially dangerous to pregnant women, children, the elderly, and people with weakened immune systems or chronic illnesses. Raw milk cheeses aged 60 days or longer are okay, since the salt and acidity of the cheese-making process make for a hostile environment to pathogens.

6. Never eat "runny" eggs or foods, such as cookie dough, that contain raw eggs.

Even eggs that have clean, intact shells may be contaminated with salmonella, so it’s important to cook eggs thoroughly until both the yolk and the white are firm. Casseroles and other dishes containing eggs should be cooked to 160 degrees fahrenheit and you can use an instant-read food thermometer to check. Eggs should always be cooked fully and those who are at high risk for developing foodborne illness (pregnant women and their unborn babies, newborns, young children, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems or certain chronic illnesses should follow the USDA guidelines. If you can’t resist runny eggs or sampling cookie batter, use pasteurized eggs. They’re found near other eggs in large supermarkets.

7. Always wash your hands in warm soapy water for at least 20 seconds before handling food and after touching raw meat, poultry, or eggs.

You can pick up a lot of bacteria out in the world, so it’s important to always wash your hands before you eat or prepare food. You should also wash your hands after touching any uncooked meat, poultry, fish, or eggs, as the bacteria from these foods can contaminate cooked foods and fresh produce. Use soap and warm water and wash thoroughly for at least 20 seconds.

8. Always heat leftover foods to 165 degrees fahrenheit.

The USDA recommends heating all cooked leftovers to 165 degrees fahrenheit in order to kill all potentially dangerous bacteria.

9. Never eat meat, poultry, eggs, or sliced fresh fruits and vegetables that have been left out for more than two hours or more than one hour in temperatures hotter than 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

If you leave perishable foods out of the refrigerator or freezer for more than two hours they may enter the Danger Zone—the unsafe temperatures between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit, in which bacteria multiply rapidly.

10. Whenever there’s a food recall, check products stored at home to make sure they are safe.

You should discard any food that’s been recalled because it’s associated with the outbreak of a food-borne illness. But, according to a survey conducted by Rutgers University during the fall of 2008, only about 60% of Americans search their homes for foods that have been recalled because of contamination. For more information on food recalls, visit the website

Cavier & Vodka
Courtesy of The Lady (Bug) of the Household