Sweet Pickles…………Easy and Sweet!!!

4 Comments

Summer is coming to a close and the garden’s are producing some late blooming goodies.

I got my hands on some good seedless cucumbers or some might call them “burpless” even “English”, in any case I like using these cucumbers for making pickles, so I had about 30 minutes on my hands and I made Sweet Pickles 🙂

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Ingredients

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Slice the cucumbers, I used my Wolfgang Puck’s Crinkle Cutter 🙂

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Put into a colander, sprinkle with salt, let set for 30 minutes

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In a medium saucepan add, sugar, salt, onion powder, mustard & celery seed

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Add both vinegar’s

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Add colman’s mustard and stir to combine

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Bring to a boil

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Rinse the salted cucumbers

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I used a 2 quart jar

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add the cucumbers

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then vinegar mixture, fill to the top, put lid on, let cool about an hour on the counter, then keep in refrigerator 

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Eat them plan or on a burger…how about a grilled cheese 🙂

Recipe

4 Cucumbers (seedless, burpless, English)
2 tbsp. mustard seed
2 1/2 tsp. kosher salt, divided
2 tsp. celery seed
2/3 apple cider vinegar
2 3/4 cup white vinegar
2 1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. colman’s english mustard

Slice cucumbers and place in a colander, sprinkle with 2 tsp. kosher salt and toss, let stand in sink to drain for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile in a medium sauce pan add sugar, 1/2 tsp. kosher salt, onion powder, mustard & celery seed, then add both vinegar’s, stir in colman’s mustard, bring to a boil, let boil for 1 minute.  Remove from heat.
After 30 minutes rinse the cucumbers with cold water, then add cucumbers to the jar.  You can use any size jars, just fill your cucumbers to the top.   Add liquid to jars covering the cucumbers, put the lid on and let stand on the counter for an hour.  Keep in refrigerator, and eat them up 🙂  

I hope everyone had a great summer, I have been extremely busy and will continue to be busy into the fall, so bare with me as I might be even slower getting more recipes out, but more are to come I a sure you.
Thank you for stopping by and taking the time to read and enjoy my recipes!!  🙂

Brown Bread!!

12 Comments

No I don’t mean like Whole Wheat bread…I mean Brown Bread, this is a sweet or quick bread and bake in a CAN!!  

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Yes I said a can…you know a can that veggies come in or soup 

I grew up having brown bread in our house my Mom would make this as well as my Grandma…I don’t think I ever thought it was odd baking it in a can…I was a kid it was a cool thing 🙂

Wikipedia says – 

New England or Boston brown bread is a type of dark, slightly sweet steamed bread (usually a quick bread) popular in New England. It is cooked by steam in a can, or cylindrical pan.
Brown bread’s color comes from a mixture of flours, usually a mix of several of the following: cornmeal, wheat, whole wheat, graham flour, or rye, and from the addition of sweeteners like molasses and maple syrup. Leavening most often comes from baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) though a few recipes use yeast. Raisins are often added. The batter is poured into a can, and steamed in a kettle. While most variations are quick breads, and can be made in less than an hour, several commercial brands are available. Brown bread is somewhat seasonal, being served mostly in fall and winter, and is frequently served with baked beans.

I really had forgotten about this Brown Bread until I read this blog “A Small Insight” http://asmallinsight.wordpress.com/2013/04/09/mammas-fruit-loaf/
Lucy call it “Mamma’s Fruit Loaf and when I read this post and saw what it was, I immediately thought of Brown Bread 🙂 

So go to her blog and check her out and her recipe for her Mamma’s Fruit Loaf 🙂

All  know is that I really was not a big fan growing up, but now this stuff if great and I like mine with butter, now my Mom likes her’s with cream cheese.  So its up to you on which way you eat it, its also good heated in the microwave 🙂

My recipe here is is made with a couple of can, I also used small paper loaf pan, easy to give as gifts and I made some today for our office and I used a Bundt pan and it just came out so nice…perfect with you were having people over for coffee or tea, it’s perfect.

Now I did compare my brown bread to the ‘Can” kind you find in the store and let me say, I thought the store bought one was very dense, dry, very little raisins compared to mine.  And the flavor well I am sorry to say it was just plan awful…sorry if you like it, I just didn’t care for it 🙂

Store bought

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Ingredients

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Raisins and water in a small sauce pan

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add flour, salt, baking soda and bran/bran buds to bowl 

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Mix together
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cream butter and sugar

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stir in egg and vanilla

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add dry mixture and stir a little

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add raisin mixture

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Fold to combine

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pour batter into your containers

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bake

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this is the can

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this looks so good

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this is store on left and mine on right

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You can see that mine has so many more raisins

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Both buttered and ready to eat

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Out come, like I said did not care for the store bought, took one bite 😦

Mine oh it looks so good!!!!

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Brown Bread Recipe

1 1/2 -2 cups raisins
2 cups water
1 cup Bran or Bran Buds Cereal
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp. butter, softened
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla

4 – 16oz. cans (fill 2/3 full)- bake for 35-55 minutes, small loaf pans (fill half full) – bake 30 minutes, large loaf pan (fill half full to 2/3’s) – bake 40 – 50 minutes, bundt pan (whole recipe) – bake 45 minutes.  With any of these just keep an eye on it, when you stick a toothpick or skewer in bread it should come out clean, it then is done.   Cool upside down on a cooling rack.

Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees

In a small to med sauce pan add water and raisins, bring to a boil over med-high heat, once it boils, remove from heat and set aside for 10 minutes.

In a small bowl add flour, bran/bran buds, salt and baking soda, stir to mix…set aside
In a large bowl cream together butter and sugar for 1 minute, then stir in egg and vanilla, then add dry mixture, stir it a little and raisin mixture, fold to fully combine.

Pour into your WELL greased or spray baking container, and bake.  Let cool enough to handle and then you can dig in 🙂

The Bundt pictures

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Savory Tomato Cobbler!!

11 Comments

IMG_20130809_142435Okay so my Dad has a ton of Tomatoes…wait let me capitalize that “A TON” from his garden…I think he gets like 20 a day 🙂

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So I was thinking what could I make…hhmmmm oh what about at Tomato Cobbler!! 

Now this turned out in my mind just okay, after I made it I tasted a piece and thought I could make it better for sure 🙂

I then hopped in my car to take the over to my “food tasters” my “parents” 🙂

And they absolutely loved it!!!!!!!!  I was so surprised but very happy.

When I went to the office the next day someone brought in a huge bag of fresh roma tomatoes from somebody’s garden, and as people were in our kitchen getting the tomatoes 🙂  

Pat one of the many Great Men that work in our Corporate office, said “Oh I just love tomatoes”…I then said well you would love this new recipe that I came up with, I’ll take some of these tomatoes here and I will make it and bring it in for everyone to try.

So I did…and well as I’m sitting here typing this I have getting lots of emails and people stopping by and telling how good it was and can I get the recipe 🙂  Mostly from all the Great Women in our office 🙂

I am so happy that everyone loves it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   Now I did change it a little from the first time I made it today so here is the recipe!!

Ingredients – added fresh basil – not in picture

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score your tomatoes

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boil your water

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add tomatoes

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peel tomatoes

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chop or squish tomatoes add to a colander to drain, keep juices

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add melted butter and sugar together

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mix 

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add flour, seasonings, salt, pepper, baking powder mix

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then add cheese and fresh chopped basil

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add milk

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mix together

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baking dish I used

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add batter to baking dish

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smooth out

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add tomatoes

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then 1 cup of juices from tomatoes

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bake

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add basil and cheese and bake till melted

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this is the one I made of the office, didn’t take a picture till it was almost gone 🙂

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Recipe – Savory Tomato Cobbler

I used a 2.75 qt. baking dish   Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

Batter

1/4 cup sugar
1/2 stick butter, melted
1/2 cup milk
1 cup flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. Southwestern seasoning, **See Note below
1 tsp. Italian seasoning,  **See Note below
3 tbsp. fresh basil, chopped, plus extra for topping
1 2/3 cup fresh Parmesan/Romano cheese, shredded, divided  ***See Note below

1 3/4 to 2 cups tomatoes, skinned and drained

Spray your baking dish really good

Boil water in a large pot, score your tomatoes on the bottom with an “X”
Once water in boiling add tomatoes and boil for 30 seconds to 1 minute depending on size.
Pull them out and take a paper towel to pull skin off, then core and place in a colander over a large bowl.  Add all tomatoes to colander then squish with your hands to release all juices, let drain as long as you can or over night in the fridge.  (you will need the juice)

Batter – in a medium bowl add sugar and melted butter and stir to combine, then add flour, seasonings, salt, pepper, basil, cheese, baking powder and mix and fold to combine, then stir in milk.  This will be sticky, once combined then spread out evenly into baking dish.

Top batter with tomatoes, then use 1 cup of the juices from the drained tomatoes (if you don’t have 1 cup add cold water to make 1 cup)

Pour over tomatoes the 1 cup of juices, then bake for 1 hour,  once done you can top the cobbler with some more fresh chopped basil all over it and then sprinkle the rest of the cheese all over as well.  The cheese will melt a little or you can return to the oven for a few minutes more to melt.  Let set for 10 minutes before serving.

****Seasonings note – the southwestern blend that I used had a combination of cumin, garlic, oregano, cilantro leaves, coriander and chives.  To make this I would take a heaping 1/4 tsp of each, that would make up what you need for this recipe.  Or you can just use Italian seasoning entirely for this recipe.

****Cheese note – in my pictures I have Parmesan and Romano cheese, you do not have to use both you can just use Parmesan cheese.  But Please…you must you fresh….you can shred a wedge or you can buy in a tub already shredded.

DO NOT use the Non-refrigerated kind in the Jar!!!

This dish would be great with a nice big salad!!  I hope you will give it a try!!!  Enjoy!!

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Banana Bread!!!!

8 Comments

Okay who doesn’t like Banana Bread 🙂

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I love Banana anything…cakes, muffins, cookies, bread, ice cream, yogurt, candy!!!  

Oh and have you seen the **NEW** Dole Dippers, slices of bananas dipped in dark chocolate and FROZEN can you say

YUMMMMMMMMYYYY!!!!!!   download

I can, I have had them and they are addicting, they even have them with chopped almonds sprinkled on top too 🙂  They come 6 packages in the box, 100 calories a package, so well worth it 😛

So have a pack of those so when you have a slice of this Banana Bread you will not feel so guilty 🙂

So we’ve all had the few bananas sitting on the counter that are slightly or way past their prime…right 😛

I think what most people think of when that happens to the bananas is….BANANA BREAD TIME!!

So here’s my Banana Bread recipe 🙂  Hope you enjoy it!!

Ingredients

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whisk together, four, salt and baking soda

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add bananas to bowl and mash

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then add sour cream and vanilla to bananas

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mix together

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cream butter and sugar

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for about 3 minutes

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add egg yolks

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beat to combine

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fold in half flour mixture

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then add banana mixture and rest of dry

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beat egg whites just until frothy

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fold into batter, but don’t over work it

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I used mini loaf pans, you can also find paper baking loaf size too, for easy gift giving

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Then bake and done

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This recipe is so moist you will never use another 🙂

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Recipe

1 stick of butter, softened
1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, yolks and whites separated
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
4 tbsp. sour cream
3 overripe bananas, mashed
1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 325 degrees

pans – 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 x 2 1/2 loaf pan, or mini loaf pans or small bundt pan.

In a small bowl add mashed banana, sour cream and vanilla, mix to combine.

In another small bowl add flour, salt and baking soda, whisk to combine, set aside.

Cream butter and sugar together in a large bowl for about 3 minutes, then add egg yolks and beat until combined.
Fold in 1/2 of dry mixture, then add banana mixture and the rest of the dry.

In a clean dry bowl add egg whites and beat for about 30 – 45 seconds just until frothy, then fold egg whites into the batter.

Just until combined, try not to over work the batter.

Bake for regular size loaf pan 45 minutes to 1 hour, mini loaf pans about 30 minutes, check by inserting a toothpick in the center and comes out clean.

Enjoy!!!!

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Asian Flank Steak and Chicken Wings with homemade BBQ Sauce

1 Comment

 

 

 

This is a re-blog from last year but with grilling season still going strong is a great recipe for grilling out.

Hope everyone is enjoying the summer 🙂

 

This is the Flank Steak and Chicken Wing with homemade BBQ Sauce recipe I used when I grilled out with some friends and made the Mac and Cheese in the electric pressure cooker (previous blog)

I love this marinade I use is all the time!

Marinade

1/2 cup honey or brown sugar
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1 tbsp. garlic, minced
1 tbsp. whole peppercorns, or just ground black pepper will work too
Mix everything in a ziploc bag, place your steak inside and refrigerate up to 24 hours.  Grill about 7 minutes per side, for medium rare, slice thinly across the grain.

I made this steak sauce to be served with the steaks as well, but then I divided it and to half, I added a 1/4 cup more of brown sugar, stirred that in and used it as a BBQ sauce for our Chicken Wings…so good!!

BBQ Sauce/Steak Sauce

3/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2/3 cup ketchup
2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1/4 cup shallots, minced
1 tbsp. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/4 tsp. each of cinnamon, nutmeg and ground cloves

Add all ingredients to a medium saucepan, heat over medium-low heat, bring to a bubble, and then reduce to low, cook until shallots are tender, 15 – 20 minutes.  Let cool, store in an air tight container in the refrigerator.
Remember if you want to make half a BBQ Sauce, divide and add 1/4 cup brown sugar to half the mixture.

My go to veggies that I just love so so much are green beans, jicama and onions, I think I could eat that combo everyday.  All I do is clean and break the green beans, peel and slice the onions and the jicama you peel that like a potato, then I slice it and cut into matchstick like pieces (they kind of look like french fries). 

I toss all of together with a little olive oil and some salt and pepper, grill them in a sitr-fry basket until the desired doneness…I like me veggies with a little bit of crunch still.  You can also saute these up in a skillet if you don’t want to use the grill.

I really do love jicama, I first had it many years ago in mexico, I thought it was potato, but I quickly found out it was this big root vegetable like a potato.  I use jicama in my soups in place of potato, it really is go much better for you, I also will eat it raw just like carrot sticks.  It’s also great in salad or adding a crunch to salsa, if you have never tried jicama please go to your local produce dept. and ask them for it, you will not be sorry…Enjoy!!!

“Goodies Box” for July

1 Comment

A Goodie Box!!!  Who doesn’t like a Goodie Box 🙂

A box that comes to you each month with Goodies in it to surprise you…I love it!!

Well I have been so fortunate to be chosen to receive thus kind of box each month as long as I blog and review each item…Well I said “Of course, it would be my Pleasure” 😛

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First you too can get the same box ($7 per month) so you can too get to taste and enjoy the same products Check them out here https://www.goodies.co/

Okay here we go

The box and wrappings are all made with recyclable materials 

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What’s inside – Wow I like what I’m seeing

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a drink and snacks

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Okay so I am really liking whats in the box, I have seen some of these items around
but sometimes you don’t really want to buy somethings just in case they turn out
not so good 🙂

Okay so lets start
 
1.  Crunchmaster – http://www.crunchmaster.com/home.aspx

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These crackers were very very good, extremely crunchy, I thought they had a good flavor, along with everything you see on the package they are also Sugar Free, Vegan/Dairy Free, low saturated fat and Og Trans fat.

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These crackers are a great snack, I would totally buy them and if anyone has to eat Gluten Free I so recommend these crackers.   Check out their website (above) for other products they sell.

2.  Cosmos Creations – http://www.cosmoscreations.com/

So the front of the bag says “Heavenly Morsels of Baked Corn with all Natural Ingredients you can Pronounce”  I like this 🙂

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As you can see from the picture again Gluten Free, among other things, I did like these little cinnamon crunchy little puffs of goodness 🙂  I liked that the fact that I really did feel like I was eating popcorn without the Hulls or Kernels…YAY!!!

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These Crunchy good snacks come in 4 flavors – Cinnamon Crunch, Caramel, Sea Salt & Butter and Salted Caramel,  I’m wondering if the Sea Salt and Butter will taste like Buttered Popcorn 🙂
I hope these some in a snack pack size, because eating the whole bag could happen if you did not portion it out…so if you buy the big bag….which I do recommend this product 🙂  Scoop some out into a bowl first 😛

3.  Glaceau Fruitwater – http://www.fruitwater.com/

Okay so now I bet your thirsty by now, well I really did like this Fruitwater 😛

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This water was refreshing, bubbly and the flavor was not over powering, so many flavored waters the flavor is so strong and they are so sweet at least to me.  I like sparkling flavored water, but sometimes it hard to find, that’s why I really do like this one, they also have 5 flavors, Black Raspberry, Lemon-Lime, Watermelon Punch, Strawberry Kiwi and the one I had Orange Mango.  Also Zero Calories, 20% of the recommended daily value of vitamins b5 and b6, magnesium and zinc, and 50 milligrams of green tea extract.

This one is a buy for me can’t wait to pick up a few 🙂

4.  The Better Chip – Jalapeno with Sea Salt – http://www.thebetterchip.com/

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I absolutely LOVED these chips, they were very crisp and firm like, they would hold up to a thick guacamole or a cream cheese dip with out breaking.  The flavor was fantastic, spicy with just the right amount of sea salt, what I also liked about these chips was the fact you could see pieces of jalapeno.

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They come in other flavors too, Fresh Corn with Sea Salt, Spinach & Kale with Sea Salt, Sweet Onion with White Cheddar and Red Pepper with Salsa Fresca.

I totally would buy these, I think they are great just on there own or with salsa or any other dip they would be just fantastic!!!

5.  Gimbal’s – Cherry Lovers – http://www.gimbalscandy.com/

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I must say when I first saw the package I was so excited because I really love Cherry flavor in anything chewy 🙂

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I opened up that package and quickly sorted them out into flavors, there are 9 flavors in this package, once sorting them all, I was not pleased….flavors and how many – Chocolate Cherry – 1, Kiwi Cherry – 2, Cherry Cheesecake – 2 or 3, Cherry Vanilla 0 or 1 (it was was to tell with color but when I tasted it, I still was not sure if it was Vanilla or Cheesecake), Cherry Daiquiri – 2, Cherry Cola – 2, Bing Cherry – 2 I think, Wild Cherry -2 I think, Black Cherry – 9.

Let me say some of these were hard to tell which was which

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All and all I thought I did get one of each flavor, but after tasting each color, I am really not sure, Bing Cherry and Wild Cherry looked very much like the same 😦

I’ll say this Gimbal’s has other candy to choose from 🙂

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I just don’t think I would choose the Cherry Lovers, matter of fact I brought the rest of them with me to the office and they are still in a baggie in my desk drawer 😛  Cherry was the flavor, I just was not impressed 😦

So this months Goodie Box was 4 to 1, I think that is pretty good 🙂
Can’t wait to get August’s box!!

Herb Crusted……Prime Rib

7 Comments

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Do you like Prime Rib?!?!?

My family does, I fixed it for my Mom’s birthday dinner and it was delicious 🙂

I think some people are scared to make one but they really are easy to do, you can ask your butcher to help you out with the right size you need.  Our butchers in the Remke bigg’s stores are outstanding and will give you all the help you need.

They will also cut the bone off if you want and tie it up, I like the bone left on, I feel this will give you more flavor and it really is simple to remove the bone.

With our bone my Mom took it and added it to her stock pot and made vegetable soup, the flavor from the bone and the meat made for some mighty tasty soup 🙂

For this Prime Rib I went to Penzeys Spices to get some enhancements 🙂  We have a store in our area and I pass it every week and just never go in, a co-worker of mine loves going in there and trying all kinds of their spices and seasonings, so I finally made in there 🙂  So check your local area for a store or you can shop them online too at http://www.penzeys.com/

I used the Fox Point Seasoning, this is a combination of salt, shallots, chives, garlic, onion and green peppercorns , I also used the Horseradish Dip seasonings this had ground horseradish, salt, onion powder, lemon peel, dill weed, black pepper and chive.

Thought these would make a great crust for the prime rib 🙂

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Mix seasoning with black pepper and kosher salt

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add just enough olive oil to make a paste, I just eyeballed it
but start with 1 tablespoon and go from there

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when it looks like this

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I decide to lay the meat on a bed of baby carrots and sliced onions 🙂

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lay with bone side down, and crust the top, and you can rub some on the sides too

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Roast in oven and you have dinner 🙂

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Recipe

2 tbsp. heaping, Penzeys Fox Point seasonings
2 tbsp. heaping, Penzeys Horseradish Dip seasonings
1 tbsp. heaping, Ground Black Pepper
1/2 – 1 tbsp. kosher salt
1 – 2 tbsp. olive oil

3.50 – 5 lb. prime rib (if you have a bigger piece just make another batch of seasonings to cover)

Ask your butcher  to tie your prime rib, you can also have them detach the bone for you, but still tie the bone up with the meat.  If you did not, you can tie it yourself with butcher string, this is a good idea, it just holds it all together as it cooks.

In a small bowl add seasoning, salt and pepper, drizzle in oil mixing with your hand as you drizzle, only drizzle enough to make a paste, take the paste and make a crust on top of the beef and rub some onto the sides.

You can put the meat on a roasting rack, or make a bed of veggies to set it on, then you have some nice roasted veggies for your meal.

Roast in the oven at 400 degrees for 25 minutes then reduce oven to 325 degrees, cook until the internal temperature is *125(rare) – 130(med. rare)* degrees with a meat thermometer, this took about 45 mins. to an hour.  Remove from oven and place a tent of foil over top and let rest for at least 10 – 15 minutes.  

Take a pair of kitchen scissors or a sharp knife and cut the string off, if you kept the bone attached, take a very sharp knife and just follow the bone and slice it off, this is much easier with a smaller piece of meat (3-5 lb.), if you get a large piece I would have the butcher remove the bone and just tie up with the meat.

Slice and serve, your center pieces will be more rare to medium rare, as you move towards the outer edge the pieces will be medium, medium well and the outside piece being well done.  

***Note – even if you don’t like your meat rare or medium rare, remove from the oven once meat has reached 135 degrees, trust me!!
Your end pieces will still be tender, as for your center pieces, if you want them cook through a little more, just make an Au jus – take some of the beef juices from the roasting pan, add to a large skillet add a can or two of beef stock/broth, bring to a simmer, then add your slice of meat to the liquid cook 30 seconds to 1 minute each side.  You can serve some of this Au jus over the slices of meat as well.  

Some people like to serve a Horseradish sauce with this as well, just take some fresh prepared horseradish, add to a small bowl, add couple dollops of sour cream, mayo, a little cream or milk, stir and add until you get the flavor that you want.  (Consistency should be like a little looser than mayo)

ENJOY!!!

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