Saturday, July 18, 2015

Simple Supper

I was looking for something to cook for dinner that was fast and easy and didn't require a lot of clean up.  We love taco salad but my daughter had gotten some dental work done and would have had a difficult time chewing the chips.  I have made this numerous times and thought I would make it again but tweak it just a little.

 Here is the recipe:

1-2 lbs. ground beef (depending on how meaty you like it)
4 Tbs. chopped onion, divided
2 Tbs. chili powder
2 Tbs. cumin
1 Tbs. paprika (in place of chili powder, cumin, and paprika, you can use taco seasoning)
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 bottle Western style salad dressing (or  Catalina)
1 lb. box of pasta twists, cooked and drained 
1 c. chopped tomato
1/2 c. chopped green pepper, (or red or yellow or combination bell peppers)
1 small can sliced black olives
1/3 head of lettuce (iceberg)washed and torn into bite-size pieces
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 c. fresh corn kernels, or frozen corn, thawed 
1 1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese (not finely shredded)
2 c. Dorito brand tortilla chips, Cool Ranch or Nacho Cheese, broken up a little, optional

**Brown ground beef with garlic and 2 Tbs. of the onion. Add spices or use taco seasoning pkt. Cool slightly. Put all vegetables including remaining onion into a big bowl. Add pasta. Add meat mixture, and cheese. Pour dressing over all and mix. To serve, spoon onto plates, sprinkle with broken up Doritos. Serve immediately.  

We love this salad!!  It is very filling. And it is a quick cook, simple supper or lunch with fast clean up.  I have taken this dish to potlucks and added the salad dressing and mixed it in at the last minute 
to keep it crunchy. 
*Note* You can use light version of dressing and ground turkey in place of beef and fat free cheese without altering the outcome too much. It is still delicious! Also, you may omit chips or olives or beans if you so desire. 
 Have a great day!!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

My Mom's Cucumbers and Cream Recipe

I was frying chicken and was thinking of something refreshing to go with it since it was such a hot day (90 degrees) I know, I know some of you will say Hot?(well for Michigan that is hot), annyway I remembered my Mom making these cucumbers and cream all summer long.  They are delicious, cool and creamy!

So here we go~~

Get some cucumbers from your garden (if you have one) or if you live in the frozen tundra for gardening like we do and don't have cucumbers on the vine, just use little ones from the store.  I used 10 for this recipe. You will also need a sweet onion (I used a vidalia which are my favs) and cut into a medium dice, also heavy cream or half and half, vinegar (any kind except red wine vinegar, unless you want pink cucumbers and cream  lol ), sea salt, sugar and pepper.

Peel and slice your cucumbers into slices like this.  

Now layer them in a bowl with the chopped onion and add a sprinkle of sea salt on each layer and keep going until you have all the cucumbers sliced and layered with the onions and salt.

Now get a plate that will fit inside your bowl and turn it upside down on top of the layers and set it aside on the counter.  Let it sit for about an hour so the cucumbers will give up some liquid and get wilted.

After an hour, take the bowl to the sink and drain out the liquid while pushing down on the plate. (If you want to lower the sodium of the final dish, you can now rinse and drain the whole mess o" cucumber love but I just leave it the way it is.)  Get your vinegar, I used this white wine one today but it is delicious with apple cider vinegar, white vinegar, or rice wine vinegar.    I used about 10 small cucumbers and 3/4 ths of a medium size onion and I have about 4 cups of veggies, so I started with a third cup of vinegar and I just poured it on the cuke-onion mix.  Then pour in about three-fourths of the cream.  I used this......

But you can pour the whole thing in if you want it thinner consistancy.  It is a pint. I then add more salt (yes really because your cream mix needs a little salt love now.)     So salt to taste, add some black pepper and a couple teaspoons of sugar if you like it a little sweeter.  Stir and taste and adjust seasonings as desired.  Put into the fridge for at least an hour to chill.  Serve.  (It is really good and is better the next day after the flavors have had more time to blend.

OHHHH, it is SSSOOO good!!!  I remember my aunt used to make this from her spotless fresh cream right from the cream separator.  Those were the days!!  She was such a good cook......homemade bread and butter, homemade dill pickles...  The best pickles I ever tasted in my life were hers!!!  I miss her!!  She was a great lady!!  Boy, my mouth is watering just thinkin about her cookin'...........But for now I guess it's time for supper...........fried chicken, glazed carrots, cucumbers & cream and rolls with homemade lemonade...Yumm..........!

I hope you have a good evening.

Blessings ~~Annabell

Saturday, June 13, 2015

The blog......

I am writing this blog to document some of my life's details for my family and friends. I LOVE  to decorate, paint and sew.   I love living in the country.  Our home, though not very fancy, is comfortable and pretty and I am always changing things around.  My mom used to tease me about painting saying my rooms were getting