Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Chicken Pepperoni Skillet

We had two large grilled chicken breast leftover from a previous meal and I decided to turn them into a chicken pepperoni skillet meal using the peppers, onions, pepperoni, cheese and a partial jar of Rao’s Marinara - I had everything on hand.  You may recall that chicken pepperoni originated from the Goldie Hawn and Chevy Chase movie entitled “Seems Like Old Times.”  We have made the original dish a couple of times and always enjoyed it so I decided to try creating this dish with the following recipe.

Chicken Pepperoni Skillet

The Ingredients:

Two large grilled chicken breast, cut into bite sized pieces (see note)

Friday, July 30, 2021

Caprese Salad

Bev mentioned she would like to turn some of our tomatoes into a Caprese Salad so I went on line looking for a recipe and found one I liked from Taste Of Home - I picked it because of the vinaigrette.  I’ve had the normal version with sliced tomatoes and thought it was just so-so and I had a pile of cherry tomatoes from our very prolific plant so I modified the recipe to get the one below.  The original can be found buy clicking on the link along with this pic.

Monday, July 26, 2021

A Visit From The Walkers, Finally

As best we can tell, the last time we saw Bev’s son and his kids was August, 2019 so we were pretty exited when they came to visit us this week.  They came and went at various times with the three girls and two boyfriends coming in on Monday.  Hard to believe their ages are now: Madison-23, Reece-21, & Riley-19 and they will all be attending the University Of Charleston (SC) this fall.  This leaves only Eric and family that we have not seen since Jul, 2019.

Friday, July 16, 2021

Salmon Omelet For Breakfast

Normally I would just post this at the end of the previous salmon supper blog but it was so good I decided it deserved its own post.  For breakfast the next morning, I sauteed some of our asparagus and cherry tomatoes then added some of the leftover salmon and Mediterranean topping to warm it. 

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Grilled Salmon With Easy Skin Removal

In spite of watching it easily done by TV chefs and fish mongers, I find that using a knife to remove the skin from raw salmon to be a somewhat exasperating experience.  So rather than trying, I use my grill to get it off.

We had three nice pieces of salmon in the freezer and opted to have them for supper and top them with a Mediterranean topping.  After thawing I kept the salmon covered in the fridge until an hour before cooking time.

Saturday, July 10, 2021

Green Chile Cheddar Egg Bake

I’ve had green chile fritatta on my list for a while and since I wanted something simple for this day it made it onto the menu.  I began with the recipe for Green ChileCheddar Egg Bake from Five Heart Home but modified it for the larger can of green chiles that I had on hand.  Pease click on the link for Samatha’s original recipe and more pics like this.

Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Country Ham Broth & Hash And A BBQ Feast

Like many people, we like to cook our beans with some form of pork and it is usually a ham hock but I have found a method I like better than dealing with the pork for each pot of beans.

We stopped at Benton’s Country Ham’s the other day and picked up a half dozen free ham bones from where they debone the hams prior to slicing and a couple of hocks.

I covered them in water and cooked them overnight to make a very rich broth, then it was strained and defatted.  We froze it in quart bags which we will add to our beans along with additional water for the broth.  This is a shot after freezing'

Sunday, July 4, 2021

Hip Surgery Diet - Tri Tip Roast

    Happy Birthday America

It’s time to get very serious about losing weight in prep for a likely second hip replacement surgery so I can get to where I need to be in two months.  I will be doing the same as prior to the last replacement and using a combo of Mediterranean, low carb, and low-calorie diets.  While I am not going completely the keto high fat, low carb, low protein route (so I can eat healthy legumes), my meals will look pretty keto friendly.

So, it will be lots of vegetables, meat, salads and no alcohol.  As a result, I may not have as many blog-worthy meals but we’ll see.

My first meal up comes from Debbie on her A Feast For The Eyes blog and uses her recipe for Santa Maria Tri-tip roast but I amended the process to get the recipe below.    You can click on the link to her blog for the original recipe and more pics like this.

Thursday, July 1, 2021

Parmesan Pacific Cod & Foghorn

After 75 years of living in the USA and comparing today’s citizen behaviors with those of the late 50’s. I can agree with this with high confidence:

Monday, June 28, 2021

Upside Down Broiled Seafood Platter – Part 2

Since the crab cakes and onions were such a hit with the seafood meal, I thought they deserved a separate post.  But before I get to that, here is my Keto friendly breakfast the morning after the seafood meal.

Friday, June 25, 2021

Upside Down Broiled Seafood Platter

When I traveled to Pittsburgh, PA on business during my working days, one of my favorite restaurants was Poli’s, located a few miles east of center city in Squirrel Hill.  The restaurant opened in 1921 and closed in 2005 and when I ate there, it was always the broiled seafood platter.  It was the best I ever ate and I’ve often fantasized about being able to recreate it at home.

For this meal, I began with recipes from All Recipes and Mr. Food to get the basics – the originals can be found by clicking on the links.  I was going for something like this.

Monday, June 21, 2021

Oysters, Wings, And Jerk Chicken

As you may recall, during our RV trip in April to Pensacola, we made a couple of stops at Joe Patti’s Seafood and one of the things we bought was shucked oysters, which I froze.

I had been advised that the frozen ones were not that good when eaten raw but just as good as fresh when cooked so we deep fried them.  I thawed and drained the 24 oz container which contained 20 select oysters that looked fresh shucked.

Friday, June 18, 2021

Lemon Garlic Swordfish

Of the four people who regular eat at our house, Cindy and I are “never met a fish I didn’t like” kind of folks and Pat and Beverly are very picky, especially Pat who will only eat fried mild fish.  While Bev will eat salmon, oysters, etc, when it comes to fin fish it’s only salmon and fried mild fish for her as well – think fried crappie.

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

The Texas Kids Annual Visit – Final Days

For their final days at Almost Heaven South, our visitors began with a busy Monday.  The girls all went to a local nail shop for manicures and pedicures courtesy of Meme, then they all went to Gatlinburg for a round of Hillbilly golf and supper at the Cherokee Grill.

Saturday, June 12, 2021

The Texas Kids Annual Visit - Low Country Boil For Seventeen & Karaoke

Along with the burgers and fried potatoes that we ate on Friday, Kathy always requests low country boil during their visits and we ended up with 17 diners on Sunday evening - I was ready to fire things up at 4:30.

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

The Texas Kids Annual Visit – Part 2

Each of the guest couples had decided to make at least one meal during the week and so far Katelyn & Xavier have made meatloaf and Lauren & Jackson made the stir fry, but I got no pics of either one.  However, when Jennafer & Chase (a Californian), made Loco Moco (Hawaiian) for breakfast, pics were definitely required.  I had never heard of the dish or even the concept but it begins with a bed of rice (or leftover fried potatoes for Bev & I) topped with a cream cheese stuffed grilled burger, scrambled or fried egg and all topped with brown gravy – gravy on burger for fried egg like this web shot.

Sunday, June 6, 2021

The Texas Kids Annual Visit – Part 1

After missing last year due to Covid-19, we have all been excited about the annual visit from Kathy and her girls, except this time with a twist – the girls all brought a boyfriend.  When we built our house on the lake, this is exactly what we had in mind and we are thrilled that the grandkids, who are now adults, still want to come visit with us.

Katelyn, the oldest, and her fellow came in on Saturday from a nine person college friends trip to Glacier NP.  For Sat evening we cooked a reverse seared coulette (sirloin cap, picanha) with broccoli casserole and salad.  

Thursday, June 3, 2021

Loaded Cauliflower Casserole

I saw this recipe on Food Network and thought it would be great for my low-carb diet and to turn it into a main dish, I added two cups of cubed Kentucky Legends Ham.  The recipe calls for roasting the cauliflower prior to assembling the casserole but since I’m not a fan of roasting veggies, (except potatoes), I steamed the florets until they were nearly done.  Also, since I like every bite to be the same, I mixed everything in a large bowl (except the final cheese topping) rather than adding dollops after baking.  You can click on the above link for the original recipe.

Monday, May 31, 2021

Pan-Seared Crusted Seasoned Salmon With Mango Salsa

We like salmon (except Pat) and the girls are big fans of mango so when I saw this recipe on the Ask Chef Dennis blog, I knew it had to be tried.  Since I had three pieces of salmon, I increased the spices by 50% and I doubled the salsa to accommodate the two pieces of chicken that I was cooking for the non salmon eaters.  You can click on the above link for the original recipe and pics.

Friday, May 28, 2021

Beef Tri-Tip

Tri-tip is very popular in the western US, but it is generally hard to find around these parts, so while Bev was in Knoxville the other day, I asked her to stop at Publix to see if they had any and she bought the only one they had.  They are not readily available, in part, because there are only two per cow.  Here is a shot from the web.

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Garlicky Greek Chicken

In keeping with my low carb meal plans and discovering some chicken thighs in the freezer that needed to be used, I found a recipe forGarlicky Greek Chicken on the Cooklist site and followed it with a few additions - here is a shot from Cooklist.

Saturday, May 22, 2021

Creamy Tuscan Shrimp

After gaining weight during the pandemic, and having my other hip degrading toward replacement, I must once again shed some pounds and just as before, I’m using the keto diet.  So when I discovered the recipe for Creamy Tuscan Shrimp on the Gimme Delicious blog, I decided it would work beautifully with our Royal Red Shrimp. Below is the original recipe which I altered to use more shrimp, since we were not serving a starch with it. (my changes).  The is the pic from Layla's site.

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Maryland Crab Cakes

Thanks to our Sitka Salmon Shares, in our freezer, we had four Dungeness Crab halves and half of a snow crab and I had been wanting to make crab cakes.  When we invited our friends Laurie and David over for happy hour, we thought they would make a nice light meal along with some salad, steamed asparagus, and desserts that they brought.  I started thawing the crab the previous day and that morning I assembled my picking station and went to work.

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Salsa Verde Baked Chicken

After a year and a half of our every Thursday meals for our friends, we have backed off to monthly (they now have gvmt help) and this was the first one since our trip to Pensacola, FL.  To make it easier for both parties, I’m trying to use dishes that we make up ahead of time and they can bake at their suppertime. 

Thursday, May 13, 2021

Greek Salmon

We now have several pieces of salmon in the freezer that we need to work thru and I know there are many recipes for Asian flavored salmon and that was what I was looking for.  But somehow I came across the recipe for Greek Salmon from Delish and since Greek is one of my favorite flavors (especially when Feta is included), I opted to put off Asian until the next time.  Even though I had more salmon than the recipe called for, I followed the ingredients for the topping and here is the pic from their site.

Monday, May 10, 2021

Rao’s Meatballs

After discovering Rao’s Marinara Sauce during an RVing trip to Wisconsin a couple years ago, it has become our go-to as we like it better than any other store-bought version and as well as our best homemade. 

Somewhere along the line Bev came upon the recipe for Rao’s meatballs and they have also become our preferred version.  Even though we’ve made them a couple of times, I can’t find that I ever blogged about them until now.  Bev was making them to have when Kathy’s family visits in June plus to have some on hand so the recipe below is tripled the original.  Click on the link above for the original recipe and this pic of theirs.

Friday, May 7, 2021

Tuna Macaroni Salad Deluxe

We had a couple pieces of Albacore Tuna in the freezer from our Sitka Salmon Shares and I have been exploring what to do with them when along came Chef Dennis’ recipefor Tuna Macaroni Salad Deluxe on his Ask Chef Dennis blog which used canned albacore tuna.  I modified the recipe for the amount of tuna I had and changed the directions a little but you can visit his site for the original recipe and more pics like this.

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Swordfish With Tomatoes And Capers

With all of the seafood we brought home from Pensacola, it was time to get serious about eating what we already had on hand beginning with some swordfish.  About nine years ago, we made this dish using a recipe from Ina Garten and Bev decided she was a swordfish fan after eating it.  Since then, we have made and enjoyed several toppings but decided it was time for this one again.

Saturday, May 1, 2021

Florida Trip – Days 16-18 - The Campground & Trip Home

It was our last day and with nothing scheduled, so my girls and a few others went into old downtown Pensacola to look around and do some shopping while I puttered around and readied the coach for the next days drive.  Since it was supposed to rain overnight and in the morning, we did as much as we could the day before, including attaching the car.

You may remember that I classify the places we stay as campgrounds, RV Parks, and RV resorts and I would call this a low end RV park as the roads and sites were all gravel but they did have paver brick patios at each site.  Check in was friendly and efficient and we were guided to our site even though it was raining.

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Florida Trip – Days 14 &15, NAS Pensacola, Grizzly Axes, Fin & Fork

The big event for Wednesday was a visit to the Pensacola Naval Air Station to watch the Blue Angels practice but unfortunately, we were having some issues and were unable to attend, which was a bummer as this was likely our last chance to see them.  Here are some photos of the flying and the museum from those who went.

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Day 13 (Evening) - Treehouse & Birthday

And the second important thing for me was to go to our rally hosts home for an afternoon in their treehouse – yep you heard right.  After years of searching for a lot upon which to build a home, they finally found one which had a Live Oak large enough for a treehouse which was a main criteria.

Sunday, April 25, 2021

Florida Trip Days 12&13 (Morning) – McGuire’s & Joe Patti’s

For this day most of the group wet down to Pensacola Beach for a beach walk, shopping, and lunch but the dogs and I hung around the coach to watch the folks who came to wash and wax it – it was in real need.  They did an excellent job and it looks nearly like new and should be protected for many months.  

Friday, April 23, 2021

Florida Trip Days 10 & 11 On To Pensacola & Cookout

Saturday was moving day and we left East Point a little after 10am and headed west for Pensacola to attend our RV Club Rally.  Our route was US-98 to Port St Joe, FL-71 north to I-10 west to Pensacola.  The roads were all good except for a few rough spots on FL-71 and the drive was four hours plus a stop for fuel just before the campground.  Other than driving in the rain on all of I-10 including a thunderstorm it was a nice, uneventful trip.

Our destination was the Pensacola RV Park located in the northwest part of the city.

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Florida Trip Days 8 & 9, East Point, FL – Campground Review

We slept late on day eight and by the time we ate breakfast, thunderstorms moved in so we spent the day relaxing and doing a little coach reorganizing.  We ate no meals out and for supper we had pan fried burgers on the hot dog buns that we had on hand so I just shaped the meat to fit them.

Monday, April 19, 2021

Florida Trip Days 6 & 7, East Point, FL

Four of our Tennessee Traveler friends were staying in Port St Joe and we decided we would like to see that area so we joined them on Tuesday at Krazy Fish Grille for lunch.  But before eating, we toured their campground – Presnell’s Bayside Marina & Resort and drove up to Mexico Beach. You may remember Mexico Beach as taking a direct hit from category five Hurricane Micheal in 2018 and it’s the only place I’ve been where most of the structures were brand new as rebuilding goes on.  There were only a few trees still standing in the pine forests that lined the road heading into town.  I see why it is popular as they have a nice beach.

Friday, April 16, 2021

Florida Trip Day 5, East Point, FL

Day four began with a few errands for some basics then a meet up with some Tennessee Traveler friends at Lynn’s Quality Oysters for lunch.  Lynn’s gets great reviews even though they have no kitchen and do most of their cooking in microwaves.

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Florida Trip Day 3&4, East Point, FL

We got on the road from Pine Mountain, GA a little before 10am and drove the following route to East Point, FL – GA-18, I-185, US-27, FL-263, US-319, and US-98.  While US-27 is two-lane north of Columbus, GA, it was a nice four lane to the south.  While all of the road surfaces were drivable, like everywhere, they all needed, or soon will need, work.  US- 98 was the worst or them.  We left in the rain and drove in the rain, heavy at times, all day taking six hours to make the 260 mile trip.

Sunday, April 11, 2021

Finally On The Road Again – Pine Mountain, Ga

After an 18 months hiatus for Covid-19, we are finally all vaccinated and back on the road in the RV.  We had the chassis serviced, replaced the six rear tires, cleaned the coach inside and out, packed it, and we were ready to hit the road around 10am.

We were barely out of the driveway when we realized we had no 120v power and as I was trying to figure out what could be wrong, Bev asked “isn’t there something you do up there (control panel) and I realized we had forgot to turn on the inverter, which fixed the problem.  Hard to believe how much we have forgotten over the 18 months.

We were headed for the Florida Gulf Coast but our first stop was Pine Mountain, GA for a visit to Callaway Gardens (CG).  We had been to the area twice before and again stayed at the Pine Mountain RV Resort the last time.

Saturday, March 27, 2021

Roasted Orange Salmon With Caper Sauce

Cindy wanted to cook fish for her meal this week and I sent her my saved recipe from Chef Lea Ann to look over.  Since it has some of our favorite items – salmon, capers, sauce – I thought she might want to consider this recipe forSuper Easy Oven Roasted Orange Salmon With Caper Sauce and she immediately said yes to it.  Since we used more fish than Lea Ann, Cindy doubled the sauce amount to get the recipe below.  The original recipe and more pics like this one can be found on Lea Ann’s Cooking On The Ranch blog by clicking on the above link.

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Dublin Coddle For St. Patrick’s Day

For St. Patrick’s Day, I wanted to try something different than our usual corned beef and cabbage and along came Chef Dennis with a recipefor Dublin Coddle on his Ask Chef Dennis blog.  According to Dennis “It’s a traditional Irish dish that was typically served on less affluent dinner tables in Dublin.  Dublin Coddle originated in the 1700’s and has been made a variety of ways. You’ll see it made with sliced sausage and sliced potatoes, but a Dublin Coddle is a stew, a one pot meal that is rustic in nature.”

I scaled his recipe back for the amount of meat I had but the original along with many great pics like the one below can be found by clicking on the above link.

Sunday, March 21, 2021

Smoked Pork and Turkey

My last pork butt smoked on the gas grill was okay but not what I’ve come to expect from myself, so I changed up my method a little.  To ensure the juice collecting pan was not exposed to direct heat, I set it on a rack in a sheet pan so the grill operated more like a real smoker.  With the two end burners on low, it maintained a 240-250F temperature and I used oak and apple wood for the smoke. 

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Getting Ready To Hit The Road – Travel Update – Pickled Red Onions

After not traveling for the past 18 months, it’s nice to be getting ready to travel again.  If all goes as planned we will all be fully protected from Covid-19 by April 1. 

Spring is definitely in the air.

Monday, March 15, 2021

Beef Fajitas & Burrito Breakfast

For the Thursday night meal for our friends, we opted for beef fajitas using flank steak and a marinade recipe for Grilled Flank Steak Marinade from Chef Lea Ann on her Cooking On The Ranch blog.  For my amount of meat I doubled her amounts to get the recipe below and I changed the instructions a little. For the original recipe and pics you can click the above link to visit Lea Ann’s site. 

Monday, March 8, 2021

Red Lion Swordfish & Cheesy Cauliflower

This is Chef Lea Ann Day at Almost Heaven South as our entire meal came from her blog recipes for the Swordfish and the cauliflower.  I changed both recipes some so let’s start with the swordfish.  I used the same amount of vegetables for four servings as she did for two but I used it as a topping.  Bev and Pat prefer chicken to fish and I thought the topping would work equally well with it.  Below is what I did but you can click on the above link to go to her site for the original recipe from the Red Lion Inn and pics.

Saturday, February 27, 2021

French Toast Ala Beverly

Bev had made an extra loaf of bread a while back and it was somewhat stale so she decided that she wanted to turn it into French Toast – about a once-a-year event around here.  She went on line and found a recipe for Challah (Jewish bread) French Toast from The Barefoot Contessa, you can’t hardly go wrong with an Ina Garten recipe.  She followed the ingredients list as written, but we cooked and topped them differently than Ina.  You can click on the link for the original recipe and a how-to video.

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

BBQ Pork Pizza

Bev had a pizza dough she needed to use but I was smoking a pork butt so we didn’t need both for supper so I suggested a BBQ pizza but Bev was a little reluctant.  When I pointed out that pizza crust was just another form of bread to make an open faced BBQ sandwich, she went in search of recipes and whipped up a batch of slaw.

But before we get into the pizza, let’s look at the pork.  I used my gas grill as a smoker and used apple and oak for the wood smoke.  I like mine with a deep mahogany color rather than black, so here it is about two thirds cooked (it got darker) and before being wrapped in foil to finish cooking.

Friday, February 19, 2021

French Dip Crescent Ring

Cindy said she had been wanting to make this for a while and finally had time to do it this week.  She used a recipe from Delish and followed it as written below.  This is a shot of theirs.

Monday, February 15, 2021

Chicken, Bacon, and Spinach Pasta

When I saw the recipe for Chicken, Bacon, Spinach Pasta on Claudia’s What’s Cooking Italian blog, I knew it had to be tried and since we had some spinach and grape tomatoes that needed to be used, this was the night.  I revised the recipe for the way we made it but you can click on the link above for the original, cooking tips, and more pics like this one.