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

Easy Cook: Homemade Instant Peach Ice Cream

I confess that I have many favorite homemade ice cream flavors; my most favorite flavor is peach ice cream. The summertime with ripe, juicy peaches is the perfect time to make this ice cream. Here is a recipe for peach ice cream that literally takes less than 10 minutes to mix up. You just need 4 ingredients, a wire whip and an ice cream churner. How simple can that be? And this ice creams is smooth and really quite delicious. It is much lower in fat and calories than commercial ice cream. You will surely impress family and friends.

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Garden-Fresh Cottage Cheese Salad

This summer, I’ve started on a mission to eat more fruits and vegetables each day. Here’s one way to meet that goal. This recipe features cottage cheese — which was a staple in our meals when I was growing up — and pairs it with fresh summer vegetables. I’d forgotten how tasty this combination was –cottage cheese and garden vegetables.  It is one way to meet my goal.

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Classic BLT Sandwich

I’m searching for ways to use my ripe tomatoes that I purchased from a local farmer’s produce stand. One of my favorite ways is to make a Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato Sandwich. I love this sandwich made with a juicy ripe tomato and a few pieces of bacon. And in the  process of researching BLT sandwiches, I learned a little trivia about sandwich bread.  Continue reading

In Search of the Real Cajun Jambalaya

Will the REAL jambalaya recipe please come forward? Ever since President Trump served “Carolina Gold Rice Jambalaya” in April at a state dinner honoring French President, Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte, controversy has been brewing in Louisiana. That is not “jambalaya,” folks protested. This set off a flurry of newspaper editorials, recipes and opinions in our state. The truth is that there are many variations of jambalaya and many good recipes. Here’s own recipe, I think it’s one of the best!

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Ripe Louisiana Tomatoes and Tuna Fish Salad

I like to support local farmers whenever possible and to purchase their produce. While driving through the countryside about an hour north of here last week, I saw a sign pointing to the Naquin Family Tomato Farm. Wow, I love garden-ripened tomatoes in the summertime. I took a quick detour and stopped in at the roadside packing building. I left with a large bag of vine ripened Celebrity tomatoes. Now to savor the tomatoes and make a few of my favorite dishes such as ripe tomatoes and Tuna Fish Salad.

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Baby Back Pork Ribs with Cajun Spice Rub and Apricot BBQ Glaze

For the Fourth of July, I have a mouth-watering recipe for baby back pork loin ribs. They are tender and juicy seasoned with Cajun spices and finished with an Apricot BBQ Glaze. It is so hot here in Louisiana; I roasted these in the oven to keep from getting outside in all the heat. So simple!

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Louisiana Root Beer Chocolate Birthday Cake

Once again my daughter is far away at a camp in the woods of the lower peninsula of Michigan for the summer and I want to mail her a birthday cake. Something special but also something that will make it through the mail intact. I browsed the internet for possibilities. Cupcakes were frequent suggestions and also petit fours with a fondant icing. But I want to mail a cake; and settled on a dense chocolate cake. For a Louisiana twist, I added a bottle of Abida Springs root beer with cane sugar to the cake. Continue reading

Easy and Elegant: Blueberry Dump Cake Dessert

I’m on a mission to cook recipes with the blueberries on my backyard bush. It has my creative ideas going. The berries don’t last long — it’s a huge crop (for me). Here’s a second easy and elegant dessert to make with the blueberries. It is so simple — it fools you. This is a “dump” cake recipe, meaning that you just dump the ingredients directly into the baking dish and mix– no mixing bowls clean up.

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Crunchy Blueberry and Apple Crisp

I have three treasured blueberry bushes in my backyard. The oldest ls loaded full of blueberries this year and the fruit ripens in May. I’ve watched the blueberries all spring, hoping I could pick them before the birds found and ate them. I’ve been thinking of recipes to make and decided on this easy dessert, “Blueberry and Apple Crisp.” 

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