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Showing posts from June, 2016

Perfect Potato Salad for the 4th of July!

Summer holidays and potato salad, always boiled down to the name “Aunt Frances," not only my Aunt Frances, but Bill’s Aunt Frances also.  

They were the “go to ladies” for potato salad back then, but unfortunately I never got either of their recipes and so am always on the hunt for the perfect potato salad recipe, and this one I’ve got for you today is close.

This recipe, slightly adapted here, was in the Chicago Tribune by Leah Eskin, in her “Home on the Range” food column.  

By the way, she has a great cookbook, Slices of Life, that’s not only filled with recipes, but a generous helping of her life stories that happened on her way cooking and baking when she was young, and later for her own family. 

Back to this recipe, it strays a little from traditional potato salad and makes the most of summer, with its surprising good taste.  

I would’ve never thought of including peas in potato salad ~ it’s a perfect match, accented by mayonnaise combined with sour cream, dill, lemon zest and D…

New Orleans Barbecued Shrimp

There is a huge 
Wow! factor with this shrimp dish!

This recipe, the source is a mystery to me; for shrimp on the grill is super simple and comes together easily. 

Shrimp marinates in a zesty sauce of garlic, lemon juice, oregano and parsley, plus a little sweet chili sauce, with a sprinkling of crushed peppers and hot sauce for heat.  Then its all quickly grilled to perfection.

I will be making this again soon for Bill to grill ~ we thought it was simply delicious!

With a side of stone-ground garlic grits ~ it doesn't get much better than this!

New Orleans Barbecued Shrimp
Printable recipe


1 pound raw large shrimp (21-25 per pound)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons chili sauce
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon minced fresh parsley
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
½ teaspoon dried oregano
¼ teaspoon hot pepper sauce


Wash shrimp well, using a pair of kitchen shears or knife, cut through the shell along the back of ea…

Dragon Fruit Colada Cocktail


Woo hoo!!!
It's the first day of summer!

It's the summer solstice!

It's the longest day 
and shortest night 
of the year! 

And, by the way:  today, the strawberry moon* will happen to coincide with the summer solstice, the first time that has happened since 1967, almost 50 years ago.  The next one won't occur again until 2062!

 ~ Toast to Summer Solstice  with this great drink ~

Pitahaya-producing cacti fruit, known in English as Dragon Fruit, isindigenous to Central America, but is also grown and exported from Israel and several Southeast Asian countries, such as Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia.  

Its succulent stem provides the uniquely delicious fruit with moisture in the arid climates where it grows.

Dragon fruit comes in 3 colors ~ 2 have pink skin, but with different colored flesh (one white, like the one I show here, the other red), while another is yellow (looks sort of like a pineapple with spikes), with white flesh.  

Best-Ever Barbecued Ribs for Dad's Day!

Bill buys his ribs from the local butcher ~ they’re perfectly trimmed and meaty.

He had the butcher cut a rack of ribs in half and bought another half, making 3-half racks, being more manageable in cooking on the grill.

I know there is a plethora of barbecue sauces at the grocery store, but I’ve yet to find one that rivals making my own from scratch.  It's easy to make, it tastes better, I know exactly what's in it; why buy bottled?

There’s nothing like smoky juicy ribs ~ they smell and taste like summer all the way ~ great for any Dad on Father’s Day!

Let’s grill now! 

Best-Ever Barbecued Ribs
Printable recipe


1½ racks pork ribs
1 cup Sweet and Tangy Barbecue Sauce*


Preheat gas grill.
Place ribs bone side down in the center of the cooking grate over direct medium low heat, making sure they are not over a direct flame.
Grill until meat is tender and has pulled back from the ends of the rib bones, about 1 hour.
Start basting the ribs 15-20 minutes near the end of cookin…

Sautéed Asparagus w/Mushrooms and Bacon

We bought a couple of bunches of great fresh asparagus at the farmer’s market yesterday, and then I looked around for a new way to prepare; this is how it went:

We loved this dish!  It’s excellent!

The recipe is a slightly adapted Martha Stewart recipe:  After cooking the bacon, I drained all but a teaspoon of the drippings in the skillet, added the asparagus and mushrooms, and then a little water to make sure the asparagus cooked evenly.

Asparagus has a unique taste and does a great job of working with other flavors, such as the Dijon mustard and bacon here.  

This recipe succeeded from start to finish, producing a stir-fry asparagus that was absolutely perfectly cooked, surprising us with an excellent side.

If you’re crazy about asparagus, give this a try!  It’s truly mouthwatering delicious!

Sautéed Asparagus w/Mushrooms and Bacon
Printable recipe


3 slices bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 bunches (2 pounds) asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 jar (6-ounces) sliced mush…

Christening Bill's New Grill

Bill is mighty proud of his new grill.  It's 3 connected grills:  one for gas, the second for charcoal and the third is a charcoal smoker.

For extra flavor, you can’t beat a charcoal grill, but sometimes we want quick and easy with the gas grill, and the smoker is a must for Bubba’s summer sausage and smoked salmon.

He's strip steak all the way and I’m filet mignon; although, if we come across a great looking sirloin steak at the butcher shop, it’s a go.

Bill has no grilling secrets; just those many years of watching my dad grill taught him to pay attention and don’t overcook the meat.

It’s pretty straightforward and pretty much my favorite meal:  a grilled steak with a green salad, sautéed mushrooms and the veggie du jour.

Shake a little salt on the meat before grilling, and a heavy sprinkling of garlic powder for me.  

Another thing my dad told Bill ~ no steak sauce, ever!


“He toasted his bacon on a fork and caught the drops of fat on his bread; then he put the rasher on his thick slice of bread, and cut off chunks with a knife, poured his tea into his saucer, and was happy.”

~ D.H. Lawrence, Sons and Lovers

ᴡᴏᴏ ʜᴏᴏ!!!

ᴡᴏᴏ ʜᴏᴏ!!!

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