Thursday, September 25, 2008


Jason participated in a golf outing last week and won a box of steaks. We are now the proud owners of ten Michael's 10-ounce New York Strip steaks, which currently reside in our freezer. I have never cooked a strip steak, and haven't cooked any other kind of steak for a very long time since it's one of the foods on Jason's do-not-eat list. Seriously. But now he thinks he might actually like steak, because he ate one at said golf outing and, "whatever it was they did to prepare it made it taste really good."

Does anyone have any suggestions for preparing a NY strip steak? I know how to cook one but I guess I'm looking for tips on seasonings. Please leave a comment if you do!

Sunday, September 21, 2008


I came across a recipe for "Spicy Bean Salsa" on awhile back. It averages a 5-star rating (out of 5) with over 600 reviews so I figured it must be good. I made it to take to bible study one night and it was a hit. I served it with Tostitos Scoops which worked great for holding everything (and no I didn't actually scoop out individual servings... I just did that for the picture because it was more attractive than showing the salsa in the bowl).

Here is the recipe as it is listed on The only things I did differently were to drain the black-eyed peas (since it doesn't indicate to do that), used diced green chiles since I couldn't find jalapenos, and I used "fire-roasted" diced tomatoes instead of regular. It really didn't seem very spicy to me. Next time I might try to add some tabasco, cumin or chili powder to kick it up a little.
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black-eyed peas
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 (4 ounce) can diced jalapeno peppers
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 cup Italian-style salad dressing
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
In a medium bowl, combine black-eyed peas, black beans, corn, onion, green bell pepper, jalapeno peppers and tomatoes. Season with Italian-style salad dressing and garlic salt; mix well. Cover, and refrigerate overnight to blend flavors.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Amazing French Toast

4 eggs
2/3 cup whole milk
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
6 slices Texas toast thick bread
3 tablespoons butter
powdered sugar

1. Mix together the eggs, milk, flour, sugar, vanilla, salt & cinnamon.
2. Heat a large skillet, or griddle. When the skillet is hot, add 1 tablespoon butter. If the butter smokes, your pan is too hot; turn down the heat.
3. Dip each slice of bread into the batter for 30 seconds on each side. Let some of the batter drip off, then put in skillet.
4. Cook each slice 1 1/2-2 minutes per side until each side is golden brown.
5. Add more butter, if necessary, to cook all of the slices.
6. To serve, put on plate, dust with powdered sugar. Serve with butter & hot syrup.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Pure Sugar and new fave blog

I've always been a fan of pure sugar. For instance, as a kid I was always a huge fan of cotton candy, and I also never understood why I couldn't (well, wasn't allowed to) just open a sugar packet at a restaurant table and pour it directly into my mouth. This love of sugar has carried over into an appreciation for a more socially acceptable dessert (which is still basically pure sugar): the meringue kiss.

I made a batch last night and was reminded why I like to make them so much. They are really easy, but look impressive and have a texture like nothing else. They literally melt in your mouth.
Then I was reminded of another dessert I love to make that is really easy (albeit more time consuming than the meringue kisses) yet impressive AND basically pure sugar: homemade marshmallows. At some point in the near future I'll have to make a batch of marshmallows and blog about them. But on my lunch break I started looking online for some inspiration. "Gourmet" homemade marshmallows are popular among food bloggers because you be creative with flavors and appearances. Case in point here.

In the course of my clicking through various food blogs looking at marshmallows, I somehow stumbled across a blog called "Blake Bakes." It's written by a guy named Blake who... bakes. It's a pretty great web site, but from there I discovered what may be my new favorite food blog (and it's not even about food, really): Blake Sips. It's only been live for a few months so there is not much there, but what's there I LOVE. Blake and a guest blogger named Jason review drinks and post recipes. The recipe for Papa Gator's Margaritas sounds delicious so I might have to try that before autumn comes. And there is a beer review that my dad might enjoy reading. (Come to think of it, Dad... I should talk to you about contributing as a guest blogger on here!) And coincidentally, tomorrow (September 5) is the one-year-anniversary of my first blog entry, which was about a beverage!

So, lunch break is over and it's time for me to get back to work, but in the meantime enjoy Blake's blogs and I'll try to post more sugar-filled recipes soon. Here's the recipe for the meringue kisses:
4 egg whites, room temperature
2 teaspoons almond extract
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup sugar
Heat oven to 225 degrees. Combine egg whites, almond extract and cream of tartar in large bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until soft peaks form (about 1 minute). Increase speed to high. Beat, gradually adding sugar 2 tablespoons at a time and scraping bowl often, until stiff peaks form and sugar is almost dissolved (2 to 3 minutes).
Spoon level tablespoons of meringue, 1 inch apart, onto parchment-lined cookie sheets, using a knife or spatula to remove meringue from spoon. Swirl top of meringue with knife or back of spoon. (I actually used an icing piping bag and tip to squeeze the meringue into the swirly shape.)
Bake for 1 hour. Turn off oven; let stand in oven for 1 hour.