Grilled Lime Chicken with Zucchini and Rice

Saturday, July 31, 2010
Marinade is a wonderful lime and pineapple bath all day! When I came home to grill this is was tender, juicy and delicious

1 green squash zucchini cut in slices
1 yellow squash cut in slice
1 cup mushrooms sliced
1 cup chunk pineapple
6 chicken thighs or 3 breasts sliced in long pieces
1 bell pepper sliced in long pieces
2 limes
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 cup olive oil
sea salt and black pepper
2 cups plain boiled rice

In a large glass dish place all spices and chicken and mix all together. Squeeze one limes juice all over the chicken. Marinate for at least three hours or overnight.
In a large grill wok pan ( you can find at any store that sells grills) sprayed heavilly with non stick spray oil, place all the vegetables and chicken with oil and seasonings all in the wok, stir fry till chicken is cooked through. Serve over boiled rice and add sesame lime sauce over chicken.

Sesame Lime Sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon orange juice
1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon grated fresh ginger root
2 1/2 teaspoons fresh squeezed lime
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
Printable Recipe

Strawberry or Blackberry Freezer Jam Recipe

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Strawberry chunky freezer jam with wonderful fresh flavored fruits that will stay fresh in the freezer around one year! Going back to school, this is perfect for the kids to have a healthier lunch made with love! I love these tiny container for a portable spread, the sandwich doesn't get soggy and they add it last themselves...all the school kids were always jealous with this homemade jam.

Amazing jam that takes no time to make and is always fresh from your freezer! I was so happy to be off the weekend, and catch up on my blogging. I have strawberries, blueberries and blackberries in the fridge. So guess what I have been up to? Last night I decided to finally try blackberry for something different instead of my traditional strawberry flavored or blueberry. My favorite is blackberry jam, but I never tried using them for this recipe, so glad I did!

Either one of these comes out great! But remember this is a chunky fruit jam not a spread or clear, that will make the jam not set if you have too much liquid in this recipe.
I used plastic to freeze this in. I have seen others use glass that always worry me that it will crack and clumsy me would drop it for sure!

Just to make sure everyone knows jam has fruit pieces in it while jelly is a puree, so be sure not to puree your berries when making this. Secondly, it's important to do just one batch at a time, but this recipe will work fine doubled as well. This is worth the time to take and very economical , plus it tastes great and is healthier!

2 cups measured crushed fresh strawberries or crushed blackberries mashed by hand with a potato masher or pulse with seconds to leave chunks of fruit, but remember to re measure after crushing them for a full 2 cups as the liquid makes a difference crushed.
4 cups sugar
1 (1.75 ounce) package dry pectin
3/4 cup water less 2 tablespoons
2 tablespoons Grand Marnier orange flavored liqueur ( this is optional the jam is thicker if you omit water or liqueur) I prefer to use the orange liqueur.
Mix crushed strawberries with sugar, and let stand for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, stir the pectin into the water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, and boil for 1 minute. Stir the boiling water into the strawberries. Allow to stand for 3 minutes before pouring into freezer style storage containers. It's just that simple!
Place tops on the containers leave 1/2 inch of head space, and let sit at room temperature for 24 hours. Place into freezer, and store frozen until ready to use or refrigerate some of this for up to three weeks. This makes around 18 to 24 small 4 oz plastic containers as shown in the first picture above or 4 -12 oz glass or plastic freezing jars/containers.

Freezer jam is meant to be stored in the freezer. In fact, it will keep beautifully in the freezer for up to a year. You can also keep freezer jam in the refrigerator for up to three weeks. Once you open a container of jam, you should use it within three weeks as well. Just remember never to keep freezer jam at room temperature, or it will spoil.
Again don't forget to enter for this great giveaway and $60 gift card drawing . Good Luck, spread the word and


Grilled Fresh Florida Seasoned Redfish with Lime Butter Sauce

Monday, July 26, 2010
Fresh caught Seasoned Grilled Redfish in a Lime Butter Sauce.....
Hoping my good friend Drick at Drick's Rambling Cafe likes this one as his fish stories, wonderful fish recipes and food blog always inspire me and this recipe is a little like the Cajun way!

A big thanks goes out to my fabulous fisherman husband Nemo, who caught one of our favorites this morning at 7am! Below is the heavenly butter sauce that will go all over this delightful fresh catch! Lime, butter and garlic....smells so good, while its cooking.
Cajun seasonings, olive oil, lime and more are rubbed all over this beauty!
Seasoned to perfection and then grilled until fish is done and flakes away with a fork. Careful art goes into making great filets..he did a great job no bones about it!

You may have seen a previous post on Fried Florida Redfish Italian Style , which has instructions on how to filet this. Or maybe you never heard of this kind of fish, Redfish and your missing out on this. This is one of the most sought after fish along with Snook, in Florida waters, in the rivers and beaches, they feed and live in shallow water in seagrass and hard to come by. So last year my husband Nemo finally got a Kayak so he can go out and fish for is his first catch of this season!

Amazing catch this wonderful Sunday morning in the Indian River Lagoon near Cocoa, Florida, just before 7am. My adorable hubby caught this awesome Redfish for our lunch today, so lucky this Redfish, was in the right slot size at 26 inches, this bad boy was coming home with papa Nemo!

Ok so here's what you do!
Grilled Redfish:
Aluminum foil
2 large fresh Redfish cleaned made into filets preferably with skins on as it will stay juicier as it cooks on the grill the skin will fall right off the fish when cooked (he totally skinned this one before I could tell him to leave it on)
Olive oil
2 teaspoons of minced garlic
garlic powder
1 bottle of worcestershire sauce
Cajun seasonings( I used Weber seasonings)
rose salt or sea salt
fresh limes 2 or 3

Lay a big enough piece of foil out to fit your filet on, one for each piece of fish. Pour olive oil on the foil around 1/4 cup, coat fish on both side. Generously sprinkle with worcestershire sauce on one side, sprinkle top with garlic powder, cajun seasoning, rose or sea salt, and juice of 1/2 lime. Fold up the sides and middle of foil. Place on grill. Cook till fish is white and gently pulls away.
Lime Butter Sauce
In a large fry pan:
melt 1 stick of butter
add 2 teaspoons of minced garlic
add a drop of worcestershire sauce
Whisk all together.
Add 2 tablespoon chopped cilantro or italian parsley, and the juice of one fresh lime. Cook just a few minutes on low, making sure all the flavors have combine. Pour over grilled Redfish~
Printable Recipe

Baked Zucchini Tater Fritter Appetizer Recipe

Sunday, July 25, 2010
Appetizer or side dish..I know you think of a fritter as fried and yes they taste better, but this is a healthy baked version with taters in them. I make these when I have lots of summer zucchini squash and leftover mashed potatoes.. They go great with any meal.

A mixture of mashed potato, zucchini, cheese, bread crumbs and spices then eggs!
The inside is soft with a cheesey garlic flavor.

1 cup mashed potatoes

1/2 small zucchini grated or half a large one pulse in food processor

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, cayenne pepper, parsley, oregano, salt, pepper

1/4 cup Italian flavored bread crumbs or more to hold together, should be a firm drop mixture

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

2 tablespoon grating cheese

optional 2 tablespoon olive oil

Mix grated zukes and mashed potato all together, add cheese and spices, drop by tablespoons on a parchment lined cookie sheet bake at 400 until cheese is golden brown on top.


Simple Things in Life and Berry Cherry Pancakes

Saturday, July 24, 2010
The simplest things in life are right there in front of us, the fruit of life begins with love. Our love for life. If you cherish it, you also need to respect the privilege.

My posts are usually just full of rambling things about how to make a certain something in a recipe , seems to be the attraction, of course this is a cooking site, duh! ( laugh) so I will promise a recipe after this long winded observation.
I was thinking this morning, its time to write about something a little different today, how amazing life is to wake up everyday, and beat the many odds and obstacles we encounter and are against us throughout the day, and still be lucky enough to come home and talk about it. The obstacles we run into during the day are many to change our lives, and the gamble is so high. We encounter several issues we may never know about, like the many drunk drivers on the road. Do we take it for granted? I think so. So often, too much in a hurry, we don't realize how close we came to harm that day to appreciate our lives on a daily basis. Looking back at all those close calls while driving with reckless drivers on the road, they are texting or talking on cell phones, that alone scares the crap out of me. We definitely need strict laws enforced everywhere. Then how about the many times through the years, almost falling from slipping on something, or not thinking when plugging something in with wet hands, being in a hurry can really hurt you lots of close calls, I will bet you all have your own right?. I guess, we all need to slow down a bit. Never take precious life for granted, love the family and friends you have, appreciate them, make more time for what's important. I am thankful to all my readers, family and friends and hope that you all are having a safe wonderful summer and have wonderful stories to tell each day for decades to come~
Not much of a post without a recipe and I pormised, so here is the simplest pancake recipe and have a Berry Cherry Day everyday for the rest of your life!

Pancake Recipe:
Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl, whisk, set aside:
2 cups flour
2 tbsp sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp fine salt
Combine the wet ingredients in a second bowl, whisk:
2 cups buttermilk
4 tbsp melted butter
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 beaten eggs

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and whisk until just combined. Fry in a pan with butter. Top with rainer sliced cherries, blueberries, strawberry and blackberries, pour lots of maple syrup over the top.... have blessed day!

Printable Recipe

Chicken and Fresh Green Beans Pomodoro over Linguine

Monday, July 19, 2010

Amazing how wonderful fresh vegetables are. Summer is the time to experience the best of all of them. Right now I had the pleasure to get some fresh picked green beans at the local vegetables stand. There everywhere in Florida along side the roads. So I bought a pound and thought fresh beans, tomatoes garlic and chicken.. the dish was still light and perfect on these hot days. Not to filling or heavy.

Here's the recipe~

4 boneless chicken breasts sliced in half lengthwise
1 pound of fresh green beans cleaned and snipped boiled in salt water on low for an hour
3 cloves minced garlic
6 plum tomatoes sliced in halves
1 1lb can of whole tomatoes pulsed through blender till smooth
2 cups of water
1/2 cup white wine
1 fresh bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon oregano, dried basil, garlic powder, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, thyme
1/2 cup sliced carrots (they add sweetness to the sauce)
olive oil for sauteing

1 lb of linguine cooked in salt water, to your desired doneness. Toss with 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup of reserved water from cooking linguine in, 2 tablespoon chopped parsley, 1/4 cup of grating cheese and 14 teaspoon black pepper. Set aside, keeping warm.

In a 5 quart saucepan, add olive oil and garlic. Saute chicken in oil for around 4 to 8 minutes turning twice on each side with garlic cloves. Add cooked beans, carrots, spices, wine, all tomatoes. Simmer for around 1/2 hour till vegetables and chicken is cooked through. To serve place linguine on a plate top with chicken and spoon sauce of the top. Add more grating cheese and serve.

Frangelico Cappuccino Mocha Frappe Recipe with Nutella

Saturday, July 17, 2010
A frappe so delicious all year long, you won't want to wait for hot weather to enjoy this one, its so addicting.

When Natasha from 5 Star Foodie Culinary Adventures sent me an email to tell me I had won her giveaway, I was so excited. I had wanted a new Magic Bullet for a year now. I had use my other one so much I burned it out and really missed it.

I just got this fabulous giveaway prize yesterday and couldn't wait to try it . Please visit her site, she always has something wonderful cooking up. I can't thank Natasha enough for my lucky win and sponsor Magic Bullet for sending this to me! I love this prize and it will have a good home for sure....thank you so much! If you haven't had one before its time you tried one out!

1/2 cup cold coffee
3 scoops of chocolate or coffee ice cream
1/4 cup Nutella or chocolate syrup
1 1/2 cup crushed ice
a shot of (hazel nut liqueur) Frangelico
chopped hazelnuts
1 cup whipped cream
In a Magic Bullet or any regular blender, combine coffee, ice cream and chocolate syrup. Blend until smooth. Top off with shot of Frangelico liqueur Garnish with a dollop of whipped cream, chocolate syrup and chopped hazelnuts and serve.


Almond Paste Cake with Amaretto Hot Fudge Sauce

Saturday, July 10, 2010

This cake will make you think about it all day just looking at it, then you will ask yourself, why haven't I tried this one before, after you've had your first piece.
Always a favorite growing up. Dense like a pound cake and rich in almond flavor, simple. The chocolate sauce will make everyone go for that second piece as well.....enjoy~

Almond Paste Cake
2 sticks butter, softened, more for buttering pan
1 cup sour cream, at room temperature
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour (measured after sifting)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
7-oz tube almond paste, cut into small pieces
4 eggs
1 teaspoon pure almond extract
Recipe Below for Amaretto Hot fudge Sauce

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter sides and bottom
of one 9-inch spring form pan. Mix together the sour cream and baking soda in a small bowl. Sift the flour and salt into another bowl. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle, cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the almond paste, a little at a time, at medium speed, and beat for 8 minutes.
Beat in the egg yolks one at a time, and mix until incorporated. It will look curdled; don't worry. Blend in the almond extract and sour cream mixture. Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually add the flour mixture, just until blended. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly.
Bake about 1 hour. It is done when you press the top and it returns to its shape, and also shrinks from the sides of the pan. Remove from the oven and place on a baking rack to cool in the pan. Make Hot Fudge Amaretto sauce while cake is baking.

Amaretto Hot Fudge Sauce Recipe
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
2 (1 ounce) squares unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons Amaretto
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine condensed milk, chocolate and salt in top of double boiler over rapidly boiling water. Stir and cook until chocolate melts and mixture thickens, about 10 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in water, a little at a time, until sauce reaches desired consistency. Cool slightly and stir in Amaretto and vanilla . Drizzle over cake. Refrigerate any unused for up to a week.
Printable Recipe

Italian Fried Shrimp Turned Firecracker Shrimp Recipe

Tuesday, July 6, 2010
I made 24 Italian seasoned fried shrimp and am very lucky I had any left for the hot sauce version. These are great naked. But making them around the 4th of July, they were a perfect treat for the holiday. I have seen them so many places that have them on the menu and thought why not, we love wings lets try these out...Well my husband ate them as fast as they could come out of the frying pan but I managed to get a few with hot sauce.
The shrimp is a crispy coating on the outside and the hot spicy taste of this sauce makes them famous for their name firecracker hot shrimp.

Just like eating popcorn chicken~ can't get enough!!

24 large shrimp cleaned, no tails on and water squeezed out if frozen
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
Beat egg and milk together add shrimp to mixture.
In a large plastic bag add:
1 cup flour
3 tablespoon corn starch
1/2 teaspoon salt, pepper, cayenne pepper and garlic powder.
In a large frypan heat about 2 cups of oil on medium high heat till hot.
Add a few shrimp at a time and fry till brown.
1/2 cup of favorite hot sauce, I use Franks hot sauce.
4 tablespoon melted butter
Mix together pour over shrimp. Add blue cheese or ranch dressing on the side.

Grandma Italian Spongecake with Dark Rum

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Not too many steps, a easy old fashioned Italian Style Sponge cake, my grandmother made this often...and was her favorite cake, soaked in dark rum.

When I was little grandma and I would occasionally walk to a local bakery to buy miniature rum cakes, they were so good. They had delicious rum pudding filled sponge cakes. That is also a great alternative in making this fresh cake into that special filled pudding rum cake, recipe at the end, ....and it makes an amazing cake! She has long sinced passed in 1975. RIP grandma...and thank you.

At 94 years old grandma still loved her rum soaked sponge cake. Although she loved her homeland and was orginally straight from Rome Italy, she really loved our country, and the 4th of July she knew well and respected this day. She always would make her cake with plenty of fresh fruits and homemade whipped cream. Back in those days they got their heavy cream skimmed off the top of whole milk that was delivered to the house. They actually had a milk man in those days! I can vaguely remember that guy coming over in the early morning to drop it off. But they always were able to make fresh whipped cream off the top,it was awesome! Grandma would pour rum straight onto the cake layers when dad had it around and then top with fruits and cream, what a treat! I thought this would be a perfect light dessert for the 4th of July festive and pretty in her honor! Thanks grandma, everyone is sure to love your recipe.....

Italian Sponge Cake...
Cake Batter
6 eggs separated
6 tablespoons water
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cup sifted flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons cornstarch
pinch a salt
1 teaspoon lemon flavoring
1/2 teaspoons lemon zest
Dark rum to your preference pour over the bottom layer (optional)
Beat whites until very stiff, set aside.

Beat yolks in a separate bowl until thick and lemon colored. Add sugar, cornstarch, baking powder, salt , sifted flour and flavoring.
Fold in egg whites. Pour into prepared pan.
Pan recommendations:
Use two small 8 inch rounds, or brownie pan for tiramisu do not grease sides of pan just the bottom only. You can also use a tube pan if you just want a plain cake no fillings or topping.
Bake at 350 for 45 minutes or till brown. Cool. Your cake is now ready for your favorite creation.
Grandma would pour straight rum on the first layer, you can see some of it in the picture above. Then top with fresh fruit of choice her actual favorite was either peaches or pineapple. But this is a special edition for the 4th of July in red, white in blue....

Suggested fruits would be pineapple, peaches, strawberries, blueberry, cherries, red or blackberry, banana or just plain with powdered sugar.......
Cake with a pastry cream filling if you would prefer (grandma's favorite):
Italian Pastry Cream
2 cups whole milk
3 teaspoons dark rum
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
6 egg yolks
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Filling: In a medium saucepan, heat the milk and vanilla to a boil . In a bowl, whisk the egg yolks and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Add the cornstarch and whisk vigorously until no lumps remain. Whisk in 1/4 cup of the hot milk mixture until incorporated with milk and vanilla. Whisk in the remaining hot milk mixture. Using strainer into the saucepan, pour the mixture through a strainer back into the saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat, whisking constantly, until thickened and slowly boiling. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter and rum Let cool slightly. Chill at least 2 hours
Fill cake layer. Top with whipped cream.