Thursday, August 21, 2014

Chili and Lime Roasted Salmon with Blueberry Corn and Basil Salsa

Today I am sharing another Tried and True recipe review from my sister's kitchen in Anchorage, Alaska from the great food blog, - Chili and Lime Roasted Salmon topped with Blueberry Corn and Basil Salsa by Chef Heather Christo.   

My sister absolutely loved this recipe, both the salsa and the salmon!  She said most people would not think to pair blueberries, corn and basil together (I wouldn't), it's seems like such a strange combination (it does), but it's so so good, so right on top of salmon!  She is already making plans to make this meal again.  I am excited to make the salsa soon too.  Instead of salmon, I plan to top grilled chili lime chicken with this gorgeous salsa!

This is the review my sister left for Chef Heather regarding her fabulous recipe: 

"What a fabulous recipe! I live in Alaska and we have a freezer full of salmon. I am always looking for different fresh and healthy fish recipes. I made this with the blueberry, corn and basil salsa a few nights ago and it was amazing. The only variation I made was sprinkling some Hungarian paprika on my salmon because I pulled a fillet from last summer’s catch from the freezer (Silver aka Coho) and it was not as red and beautiful as yours in the picture. I LOVE the grated jalapeño! I did not tell my boys because they would have refused to eat it… It gave the fish just the right amount of heat – AND THE SALSA… that will be a staple in our house. It’s so refreshing, fresh and crisp and the flavors are music in the mouth. Really, it’s such a great recipe, flavorful and healthy!"

The Blueberry Corn and Basil Salsa recipe would be terrific on top of a variety of fish, chicken and pork or served with your favorite tortilla chips.  

The salsa above was served on top of this Chili and Lime Roasted Salmon pictured below...

Head over to for the recipe and to see how beautiful the Chili Lime Salmon is topped with the Blueberry Corn and Basil Salsa!  

A big thank you to my sister for this great recipe find, photos and share!

Thanks for stopping by!


Monday, August 18, 2014

"Man-Pleasing" Maple-Dijon Chicken

This week I have another Tried & True recipe that rocks, Man-Pleasing Chicken from Witty in the City!  

After seeing this recipe time and time again on Pinterest and pinning it myself, I had to see what all the fuss was about.  I headed over to Witty in the City where I originally saw the recipe.  After reading loads and loads of rave reviews again, I decided to make it for dinner last night.  The original recipe is from Trader Joe's Cookbook, which I don't have, so I'm not sure how much the recipe is adapted.  You can find this recipe online often called Maple-Dijon Chicken, Maple-Mustard Chicken and Holy Yum Chicken.  I am just going to call it good - really, really darn good chicken - family pleasing chicken!  Both my girls loved it (11 and 17 years old) and my husband thought it was absolutely delicious, full of flavor!  I loved it too, it was wonderful!  What I loved the most was how simple it was to make.  Just a few ingredients with very little prep time and in under an hour you have a fabulous meal.  

These are the only ingredients you need along with bone-less, skinless chicken thighs and salt and pepper...

"Man-Pleasing" Maple-Dijon Chicken
Head over to Witty in the City for the full recipe.

Boneless, Skinless Chicken Thighs
*Maple Syrup - see Tips section
Dijon Mustard
Rice/ Rice Wine Vinegar
Fresh Rosemary
Salt and Pepper

I followed the recipe as directed, only adjusting the amount of chicken thighs from 1.5 lbs to 2 lbs for my family of four and a smidgen more of each ingredient.  I lined my baking dish with foil for a quick and easy clean-up.  I also lightly sprayed the foil with non-stick cooking spray before adding the chicken.  I served it with wild rice, steamed broccoli and salad.  If you make this, be sure to spoon the maple-dijon sauce over the chicken, wild rice too!  De-lish!    

  • Unless you want to spend hours cleaning your baking dish, COVER IT WITH FOIL!
  • *Maple Syrup - Witty in the City only uses Pure Maple Syrup.  After reading the comment section, some people say use pure maple syrup, some say you do not need to.  I didn't have pure maple syrup and used Log Cabin - the chicken turned out great. When I make it again, I plan on using pure maple syrup and will let you all know if it makes it even better. 
  • If you want your chicken to brown, you may need to place it under the broiler for a few minutes.  Be sure you are using a metal, heat-safe baking dish.
  • Fresh Rosemary is a must have!    
  • Bake the chicken uncovered.
  • People have used chicken breast and bone-in chicken thighs with this recipe.  You can read more in the comment section at Witty in the City

Head over to Witty in the City to print a copy of this wonderful recipe!

Thanks so much for stopping by!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

S'mores Crazy Cake

Last weekend I was forced to be creative when I made a Crazy Cake for my girls.  I had nothing in the house for frosting, not even powdered sugar (I'm still filling my pantry since our big move).  What I did have was ingredients for S'mores, so I made them a s'mores topped Crazy Cake.  They LOVED IT!  Such a fun summer treat!    

Important:  If you make this cake, be sure to use a heat-proof baking dish under the broiler - I DO NOT recommend glass, it could easily shatter - use a metal baking pan.

For a step-by-step picture tutorial on how to make Crazy Cake, head here

S'Mores Crazy Cake

Cake Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 Cups flour (all-purpose)
  • 3 Tbsp. cocoa (unsweetened)
  • 1 Cup sugar (All purchase sugar - Granulated Pure Cane Sugar)
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp.  salt
  • 1 tsp. white vinegar
  • 1 tsp.  pure vanilla extract
  • 5 Tbsp. vegetable oil 
  • 1 Cup water 
  • Hershey bars, regular size (approximately 4)
  • Marshmallows (large or small size, enough to cover top of cake in a single layer.  I used large marshmallows, cutting them in half)
  • Graham crackers, crushed (approximately 4 whole crackers) 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Mix first 5 dry ingredients in a greased 8" square metal baking pan.  Make 3 depressions in dry ingredients - two small, one larger.  Pour vinegar in one depression, vanilla in the other and the vegetable oil in third larger depression.  Pour water over all.  Mix well until smooth.

Bake on middle rack of oven for 35 minutes.  Check with toothpick to make sure it comes out clean.  Remove cake.  While cake is still warm, top with Hershey bars, then top with marshmallows and broil until lightly toasted.  Stay next to oven and watch - they toast very fast!  Once toasted, pull from oven and top with crushed graham crackers.    Serve warm or cold!   Enjoy!

Oven cooking times may vary, be sure to check your cake to make sure you do not over bake.

Mix batter in a bowl for neater, easier mixing.  Be sure to follow the directions the same way - mixing the dry ingredients then making the depressions for the wet ingredients.  Don't forget to grease your pan. 

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Easy Baked Ziti and Cheddar Cheese Pull Apart Rolls

Here are two tried & true recipes that were huge, and I mean HUGE, 
hits in my home for dinner last night....

All I heard coming from the table was "mmmmmm, this is so good," and "oh my gosh, I love this!"  Isn't that what every cook wants to hear!  Every single plate was clean as a whistle.  I mean clean!  If you are looking for a crowd pleasing meal, I highly recommend these two recipes!   

First recipe, Easy Baked Ziti from The Country Cook!  This recipe was so simple to make, so darn good.  Brandie (The Country Cook) never fails to deliver delicious recipes that are quick and easy!   This is another recipe I will be saving and making time and time again.   

Easy Baked Ziti 

  • Penne Pasta
  • Ground Beef
  • Garlic Alfredo Sauce
  • Spaghetti Sauce 
  • Onion (optional)
  • Mozzarella Cheese 
I followed the recipe as directed, using the same Alfredo and spaghetti sauce as The Country Cook.   The only ingredient I did not add was onion - but only because I didn't have one.  Next time I make this (which will be soon), I'll be adding onion.  I also sprinkled a little sweet basil on top of the mozzarella after baking.  

Head on over to The Country Cook for the full recipe, your family and friends will thank you!


Next recipe...Easy Cheesy Pull Apart Rolls from Family Fresh Meals!  Corey from Family Fresh Meals was not kidding when she said it was easy!  Only a 5 minute prep...pop them in the oven and they are ready in under 20 minutes from start to finish!   These rolls were devoured!  Devoured.

Cheddar Pull Apart Roll (Easy Cheesy Pull Apart Rolls)

  • Refrigerated Biscuits
  • Cheddar Cheese
  • Fresh Parsley
  • Olive Oil
  • Onion Powder
  • Garlic Powder
I only made a few changes to the recipe, using what I had in the house.  I used Pillsburry Grands Homestyle Buttermilk Biscuits - 8 Big Biscuits and cut them in fourths.  I was able to make 10 large rolls, placing 3 "chunks" of dough mixture in each muffin cup (regular size muffin tin).  After filling 10 muffin cups, I had two chucks of dough left over, so I made another roll that was a little smaller.  I didn't have fresh parsley, so I sprinkled on some dry parsley from my spice rack.  Next time I make these, I'll be using fresh parsley!  Yum!  

Head over to Family Fresh Meals for the full's awesome!  

A big thank you to Brandie and Corey for two wonderful recipes!

Thanks so much for stopping by!  

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Copycat McDonald's Sweet Tea

Sweet Tea fans, here is a great recipe that is sure to hit the spot on a hot summer day!  According to my girls and their friends, it tastes just like McDonald's Sweet Tea! Sweet, smooth, refreshing....summer in a glass!

A few years ago, I stumbled onto, looking for a way to make iced tea smooth and less bitter.  Who knew all it took was a PINCH OF BAKING SODA!!!  Don't be scared of the baking soda (I was), you'll be telling everyone this tip!  The baking soda also helps to keep the tea clear.  So long bitter, cloudy tea!   

Today's recipe is being shared by request from my youngest daughter's friend -  she loves my sweet tea and recently moved.  I told her I would post the recipe so she could make it in her new home.  As promised, here it is  ...

Copycat McDonald's Sweet Tea 

Print Recipe 
Ingredients (Makes 4 quarts = 1 gallon)
  • 3 Family Size Lipton iced tea bags  
  • pinch of baking soda 
  • 4 cups boiling water
  • 12 cups cold water
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
Drop a pinch of baking soda in the bottom of a heat-proof, one gallon pitcher (plastic pitchers are best when working with boiling water).  In a small sauce pan, bring 4 cups of water to boil.  Remove from heat, add tea bags and allow to brew for 15 minutes, dunking tea bags up and down a few times while brewing. Remove tea bags, pressing out excess tea with a spoon.  Transfer hot tea to pitcher, add sugar, stir and allow to dissolve completely.  Add 12 cups cold water and stir.  Store in fridge until chilled. Serve over ice.   Enjoy!   

  • Plastic pitchers work best - NEVER pour boiling water in glass pitcher that is not heat-proof, it may shatter.  
  • Adjust sugar amount to desired taste.  My girls like a little more sugar, but I always use less. 
  • Try different flavored tea bags, like peach. YUM!
  • If you like stronger tea, add an additional tea bag(s).
Thanks for stopping by!

I'm sharing this recipe at this great party:

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Mixed Berry Salad

Today's recipe is another great one from my sister's kitchen...

This salad is simply wonderful...refreshing...delicious!  What's great about this salad, you can change it up and make it your own!  Even better - it's so simple to make. Throw some grilled chicken on top and you have a meal!  

Mixed Berry Salad

Ingredients (adjust quantity of each to liking)
  • 5 oz bag spring mix salad 
  • 1-2 cups Romaine lettuce (for texture/crunch)
  • 1-2 cups fresh sliced strawberries
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 11 oz can mandarin oranges, drained
  • 5 oz Feta cheese, crumbled 
  • 1/2 cup candied walnuts or pecans
Bottle of Brianna's Blush Wine Vinaigrette  - so good!

Wash and dry lettuce, place in large salad bowl.  Top with fruit, cheese and nuts. Lightly dress with Brianna's Blush Wine Vinaigrette, toss and enjoy!  

  • Blackberries and raspberries are a delicious addition.
  • Substitute feta for Gorgonzola or blue cheese. 
  • Make your own homemade vinaigrette dressing, like Raspberry Vinaigrette
  • Add grilled chicken on top for a meal.

Thanks for stopping by!

I'm sharing this yummy salad at this great party...

Friday, July 25, 2014

Smile, It's Friday!

Free clipart - right-click to copy and paste and save to your computer!