I am so happy that you have landed in my little corner of cyberspace. If you join me here, you will, hopefully, get to know a little about me. You will read my thoughts, my hopes and dreams, and see some of my favorite things. I hope you will visit often. I will try to update it regularly and hopefully you will see an improvement in the blog along the way. Thank you for stopping in to see me as I travel on this journey called "life"!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Potato Salad w/ Honey Thyme Vinaigrette


It seems like forever since I've been here to share anything with you.  It has been a whirlwind of activity around our house this summer and it has just started.  

I don't know whether or not I have told you about the Menu for the Future Discussion Group that David and I have been attending for the last six weeks.  Well, honestly, we haven't attended every week due to the chaos of moving and our summer activities; but, we have done the readings and attended when we could.  Long story, short.....you should look this up and if there is a discussion available in your area, I would encourage you to attend.  We learned so much and met some really nice people in our community in the process.

Last night, we marked the end of the discussion group meetings with a pot luck dinner.  What a fun time we had!  Monkey's dad participated in the noon meeting so we were blessed to enjoy dinner last night with their family along with my in-laws and some other family members who participated.

To get to the point of this blog post, I want to tell you about the dish that I brought.  When considering what to bring to this dinner, I happened across the most fabulous recipe featured by one of my favorite bloggers, Girlichef, who I am sure most of you know.  If by chance you haven't visited her wonderful blog, I encourage you to visit soon.  You will be so glad you did. The recipe that she posted looked so wonderful that I knew that I had to make it for the party.

I went in search of the fingerling potatoes that she used in her recipe and while I was able to find some of them, the market, also, had these other fantastic looking gourmet baby reds and purple potatoes and I had to pick them up, as well.  You know that I can't seem to make the recipe exactly as it's written.  My fingerling potatoes didn't cooperate with slicing them lengthwise down the middle like the original recipe called for so I ended up cutting them into about the same size as the other potatoes.

I was blessed enough to have the fresh thyme in my garden so the dressing recipe was perfect for using that.  I used a combination of regular thyme and lemon thyme.  And then there were the chive blossoms in the garden.....

Look at them! They were begging for me to use them in some way.  I have to tell you that my chives never bloomed in Louisiana so I had no idea that this occurred.  I am so thankful that the lady who lived in this house before me had planted some years ago.  These would be the perfect garnish for the top of the salad.

So without further adieu....here's my version of Girlichef's salad.

 Potato and Green Bean Salad w/ Honey-Thyme Vinaigrette
Adapted from Girlichef

salad ingredients:
1½ lbs. Potatoes
sea salt or kosher salt
8 oz. fresh green beans, ends snapped
1 smallish red onion, sliced paper thin
1 lb. bacon
2 oz. Feta cheese
Chopped Chives and Chive Blossoms, for garnish (optional)

honey-thyme vinaigrette:
¼ c. cider vinegar
1 shallot, peeled
2 Tbsp. honey
1 Tbsp. fresh thyme leaves
1½ tsp. Dijon mustard
½ c. canola or vegetable oil
sea salt or kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper

Combine cider vinegar, shallot, honey, thyme leaves, and Dijon in the jar of a blender and process until smooth. Throw in a couple pinches of salt and a few good grinds of pepper. With blender running, slowly pour in oil in a steady stream until thick. Set aside. 

Slice bacon crosswise into ¼-½" strips.  Place in a frying pan and cook gently, pulling them apart from each other with your spoon, until just done. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate to drain and cool.

Place scrubbed potatoes in a large pot with water to cover by at least an inch. Add about a teaspoon or so salt and bring to a boil. Turn heat to a simmer and cook for 8-10 minutes, or until just tender. Drain and then spread the potatoes out on a sheet tray to cool until you are able to handle them. 

Bring about a quart of salted water to a boil and add the green beans. Cook for 3 minutes or until just al dente. Quickly drain and shock the beans in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. Once they are cooled, drain beans for a few minutes.

If you use fingerling potatoes, slice them in half lengthwise or slice into rounds while they are warm and place them in a large bowl with the green beans and sliced red onion.  Toss them with about half of the dressing.  If you are not ready to serve it right away, cover it and place in the refrigerator until ready to serve.   

When you are ready to serve your potato salad, toss everything in the bowl around again.  Add chopped, cooked bacon and feta cheese and toss to combine again, adding more dressing if you'd like.  Sprinkle with chopped bacon, chives and chive blossoms.  This salad may be served warm, cold or at room temperature. Enjoy!

Thanks so much for stopping by!  I hope you have a wonderful week!

Hearth and Soul Hop at Zesty South Indian Kitchen

Tempt my Tummy Tuesdays


Miz Helen’s Country Cottage

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

No words necessary...

This post is being linked up here
for Wordless Wednesday.
Happy Wednesday!

Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Charred Corn Salad

There is nothing like fresh corn in the summer.
Can I get an amen?

I love it just about any way that it is prepared including just cutting it off of the cob and nibbling on it raw or throwing it raw into a salad with fresh greens.  I was so happy to find the first corn of the season in the market on Saturday.

I had planned to make something with it this past weekend and didn't get around to it with all that was going on around the house. As I was checking my Facebook page today, the perfect recipe appeared on my wall and I knew it was destined to be dinner tonight.  

It was fresh and healthy and I had all of the ingredients in the kitchen.  If only I had gotten this recipe before the party on Sunday, I would have made it a point to treat my guests to this dish.  It was fantastic!

So without further adieu, I give you.....

Charred Corn Salad
Adapted from Shutterbean

For the Salad:

4 cobs fresh white corn
extra virgin olive oil for brushing
1 orange pepper, diced *(I used a red pepper because that's what I had.)
1 avocado, peeled and chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded & finely chopped *(I roasted my only pepper before I found this recipe so I used that.  It made it really spicy.  Next time, I will use a raw one.)
2 green onions, finely chopped
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped (or cilantro!) *(I used cilantro!)
1 tablespoon fresh mint, chopped

For the Dressing:

1 large garlic clove, minced *(I had some roasted garlic left over from the weekend so I used that.)
1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon honey
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Preheat grill to medium high. Shuck corn and brush lightly with olive oil. Place on grill and cook for 12 to 15 minutes, until golden brown on all sides. Remove from heat and let cool.

For the dressing:

Combine garlic, ginger, lime juice, vinegar and honey in jar. Add in the olive oil and seal jar. Shake until dressing is uniform. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Scrape kernels off corn cobs with a knife and place in a large bowl. Add dressing and mix. Add in the pepper, jalapeno, green onions, parsley (or cilantro) and mint and stir until combined. When ready to serve, add the avocados.

I can't wait to make this again! 

This post is being shared here with the Hearth and Soul Blog Hop
and here with Let's Do Brunch.

Thanks so much for stopping by!

Hearth and Soul Hop at Zesty South Indian Kitchen

Lindt White Coconut Chewy Oatmeal Cream Pie Cookies

We had a little "Dads and Grads" party here this past Sunday in honor of our recent high school grad and the recent college grad and the dads in the family that we love so much.  It was our first party at our new home and I think it went well.  I wish my mom and step-dad could have joined us.  I missed them.

I didn't get any photos taken of the actual party and very few of the preparations for it. Can you believe that? We had a very sweet and very silly little monkey with us for a lot of the weekend and she pretty much stole the show. 

Pops and Granna were tag-teaming the entire time that she was here.  It was busy but so much fun.  

I was one tired puppy at the end of Sunday night!

We had a Mexican theme for the party which gave David a chance to break out the grill and make some fajitas.  We grilled chicken and steak and David made homemade flour tortillas for the first time since we moved North.

And I was a cookie-baking machine...

Not only did I make the Almond Peanut Butter Nutella Coconut Chocolate Chip Flourless Cookies that I told you about HERE and Lemon Cooler cookies...

which I may or may not tell you since they ended up being "not so newsworthy"; but, I made these babies....

These, my friends, are most definitely "news worthy".   I made Joanne's absolutely amazing Carrot Cake Cookies that she featured last week on her blog HERE.  You simply must go over there and get that recipe along with the thousands of other fabulous recipes she has featured there.   Oh.my.goodness.   You will be so glad that you did.  

Along with Joanne's amazing cookies, I made a cookie that I've been thinking about since I snagged one of those yummy bars from the house warming party at my stepson and daughter-in-law's house.  

I snagged it with this cookie in mind..... a Lindt White Coconut Chewy Oatmeal Cream Pie Cookie.  Well, I didn't think about the Oatmeal Cream Pie part until we tasted the Carrot Cake Cookies and David pronounced that we simply must sandwich some of that yummy cream cheese frosting in the middle of the oatmeal cookies....quickly!  I have to admit that he was right.  The cookies were pretty fabulous on their own; but, when we added the cream cheese frosting...which we had an abundance of because David and Connor and even Cass snagged some of the carrot cake cookies before I could get them frosted....it was the icing on the cake cookie.....


Run...don't walk....to the nearest store and grab one of those bars and make these cookies.  I am telling you that they are amazing. 

Lindt White Coconut Chewy 
Oatmeal Cream Pie Cookies 
Adapted from Scarpetta Dolcetto 
  • 12 Tbsp (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 C light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 C granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 C old-fashioned oats (not quick-cooking or steel-cut)
  • 1 C all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 Tbsp whole milk
  • 1 Lindt Excellence White Coconut bar, coarsely chopped
Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 5 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Frosting Directions:
Combine cream cheese and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on medium-high speed until well-combined and smooth, about 2-3 minutes.  Mix in vanilla.  Gradually beat in confectioner's sugar until totally incorporated.  Increase the speed and beat until smooth.  Mix in lemon juice.  Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Cookie Directions:
With a mixer, cream the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.  Add the egg and vanilla and mix to combine, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.  In a medium bowl, mix the flour, oats, salt and baking soda.  Add to the mixing bowl and combine.  Add the coarsely chopped White Coconut bar and mix well.
Refrigerate the dough for at least half an hour or until cool to the touch. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees and line your baking sheets with parchment and set aside.  Shape dough into generous tablespoon-sized rounds and flatten slightly.  Place 2" apart on the baking sheet and bake about 10-12 minutes until they are well browned and the centers are set.  Once the cookies have cooled, generously spread cream cheese frosting on the bottom of the cookie and sandwich one of equal size with it.  Enjoy!

Thanks so much for stopping by!  I hope you have a wonderful week!

Tempt my Tummy Tuesdays


Miz Helen’s Country Cottage

Monday, June 13, 2011

Mellow Yellow Monday...

This photo is being linked up
HERE for Mellow Yellow Monday.


I want to take a minute to thank you all for sticking around with my blog. It's a busy time in our life these days so I have been off enjoying time with family and not much time posting about it or time visiting your blogs like I love to do.  I still need to share with you our trip to Niagara Falls last week.  It was so much fun!  One day I will figure out how to do successfully live life and blog about it consistently.  I still don't know how you guys do it.

You are my heroes!

Until then, I'm going to continue to enjoy the summer with my handsome son before he heads off to college this fall....

And continue to spend time with family and celebrate the joys and accomplishments that they are making in their lives like my beautiful stepdaughter's graduation from college... 

Congrats Cass! 
 And spending more time with Monkey who will be staying with 
Pops and Granna more this summer while Mommy works at her new job...

I will be doing some traveling in and around New England and entertaining friends who are planning to visit this summer.  I look forward to sharing those adventures with you in the future.  We will be enjoying our new kitchen and garden and cooking some new things that I hope to be sharing with you going forward, as well.  

Thanks so much for stopping by!  I will hopefully catch up with each of soon. Have a wonderful week!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

I have received word that...

for my

Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken 
with Green Chile Cilantro Sauce
that I posted about here.

If you liked this post, I would appreciate it if you would hop over here and cast your vote for me.  If not, hop on over and see Lamb anyway.  She has a wonderful blog.  You will be glad you did.

Thanks so much for stopping by and for your consideration!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

It's hard to believe but....

My baby just graduated high school yesterday.
Where did time go?

Congratulations Connor!
I couldn't be more proud of you.
May all of your dreams come true.

I love you,

I hope you all are having a great weekend.  We are celebrating Connor and this special time in his life.  I will be back soon!

Thanks so much for stopping by,