Homemade Pickled Jalapeno Peppers

I decided to make a batch of pickled jalapeno peppers with my remaining garden produce. I have just enough of the peppers for three small jars. And surprise. It is really quite easy to make your own pickled peppers. These brined peppers turned out to be crunchy and full of hot flavor — much better than store bought ones, in my opinion. Although they can be kept in the refrigerator for several months, I doubt if they will last that long.

Continue reading

Pumpkin and Spice Snickerdoodles

It’s October — the season for pumpkins and gourds. I’m beginning to see small pumpkins for sale in grocery stores and farmers markets. These pumpkins are called sugar pumpkins and are best suited for baking and eating– rather than the huge ones sold for carving and decorations.  A recipe for Pumpkin Snickerdoodles caught my attention. Adding pumpkin puree to cookies is a unique way to use  pumpkin pulp; I thought I’d try to make a batch. 

Continue reading

Cajun-Style Shrimp Stuffed Jalapenos & Variations

I grew a bumper crop of jalapeno peppers in my garden this summer; these hot peppers are extremely easy to grow. One of my favorite appetizers at a local restaurant uses these peppers in a dish called “Crab Stuffed Jalapenos.” All summer I’ve attempted to duplicate and copy their recipe using my large crop of jalapeno peppers. Here are several of my variations and results. The stuffed jalapenos are delicious; I do recommend having a large glass of water nearby. Continue reading

Let’s Make a Chicken Shawarma-Style Bowl

Let’s try to make a Chicken Shawarma-style lunch bowl. I’d like to find a chicken shawarma recipe which is close to the real thing. For lunch, we love to eat at the nearby Greek and Lebanese Serop’s Express Cafe with a cafeteria-style lunch line. The chicken shawarma plate or bowl with chicken, rice, salad and feta cheese is my favorite. I could eat at this restaurant every day for lunch. (For the quick service and tasty food!) Continue reading

Sun-Brewed Darjeeling Iced Tea — Pros and Cons

While visiting in Germany last week, I discovered that folks there don’t drink iced tea. It’s not on restaurant menus, there was no instant ice tea mix or family sized ice tea-bags in grocery stores. Missing a glass of ice tea, my son and I bought tea bags and brewed our own. We randomly selected Darjeeling tea and it was actually the best iced tea I’d had in quite some time. After returning back home to Louisiana, I decided to attempt to make sun-brewed iced tea using Darjeeling tea bags. Continue reading

Homemade Waffle Ice Cream Cones

I think that ice cream always goes better with a cone, cookie or wafer; something crunchy. And so I treated myself a neat gadget, an ice cream waffle cone maker, to go along with the homemade ice creams that I like to make. I’m especially pleased that I found a recipe for waffle cones which uses only egg whites. Since I was taught never to throw good food away, I can use the egg yolks in the custard ice cream and the whites in the cones. I come out even with my use of eggs. Continue reading

Dark Chocolate Custard Ice Cream with Salted Caramel Pieces

It is summertime and a person can never eat too much ice cream. Here’s a recipe I found while sorting my recipe file box; it is from an old Bon Appetit magazine. It’s a custard-type ice cream made with egg yolks and dark chocolate squares. The ice cream is incredibly smooth and rich. For fun, I served the ice cream with chopped Dark Chocolate Salted Caramel slivers and homemade waffle cone pieces.

Continue reading

Spinach and Dill Rice

If you had told me that spinach and rice made a great combination; I might not have believed you. But while looking for ways to use my spring harvest of dill, I noticed a recipe combining spinach and rice along with dill and feta/Parmesan cheese. It’s from the cookbook, Vegetarian Epicure, Book Two. I’m not sure what region or type of cuisine this might be from; but it’s an interesting way to cook spinach and I’m trying to find creative ways to increase vegetables in my diet.

Continue reading

The Vegetarian Epicure: Baked Beans à la Charente

This week I’m travelling back in time to a recipe from the 1980’s. While searching through cookbooks on my bookshelves, I rediscovered one that I purchased during those years. I’m a collector and never throw anything away — this cookbook is a good one. Glancing through the pages, I saw marks by the recipes that I had made; most had “excellent” by them and many had memories associated with them. And this cookbook has a story of it’s own. I decided to try to make a one of the recipes — “Baked Beans à la Charente”, a vegetarian bean casserole topped with fresh tomato and eggplant slices. A little cognac in the beans gave some zing. Yum. Continue reading