He Looked Cold

He Looked Cold1

 

Paw pring

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Habanero Hot Sauce*

* Ooops!  I forgot the title ’til I saw that “untitled post” had been favorited.  Fixed

DSC_8828 (1600x1060)I have many more habanero peppers than I will ever use.  I hate to waste such pretty things so I went Google diving, looking for a recipe I found last year and used.  I’m not sure if I posted anything about it.  I did a post that included a sauce recipe using habs but this one is a little different:

Habanero Hot Sauce

About 12-15 (give or take…) Habanero peppers. Remove the seeds.
1 can sliced peaches in either heavy or light syrup.
1 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup molasses
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup yellow mustard
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon allspice
The original recipe called for 1/2 cup mustard but it seemed like too much so I halved it. Blend it all on high until liquified. Refrigerate overnight or use right away. You can also freeze or can jars of it. It’s also supposed to keep for a long time in the refrigerator. I canned the extra out of the first batch but I’m going through it so fast, after filling my old tabasco bottle with it I just freeze the rest until ready to use.

I’m not a huge fan of molasses so I used only a little, and subbed some of my whole grain mustard for the yellow.  After it all was processed in my machine it seemed a bit thick so I added some seasoned rice vinegar.  I have a pint of the finished sauce in the fridge, and 5 half pint jars full that I processed in a boiling water bath.  DSC_9021 (1600x1060)I guess how big the can of peaches is will make some difference – I used some re-hydrated peaches that we bought dried.  They were just too chewy to eat as is but when soaked in water for a day or two in the fridge they were pretty good.  Not like fresh or canned by any means.  The water they soaked in turned into a liquid nearly the same as syrup from canned, sweet even without any added sugar.DSC_9024 (1600x1060)

Cajun Food Pr0n – Gumbo

DSC_9004 (1600x1060)I always send folks to this page when they ask for a gumbo recipe.  It’s for a chicken and sausage gumbo but easily adapts to whatever meat you have on hand.  The pictured gumbo has the chicken and sausage, plus precooked shrimp and crawfish tails that were added just at the end to warm through.

Dessert Pr0n – Raspberry Crumb Pie

DSC_9018 (1600x1060)This is still sitting on the windowsill, cooling.  I bet it will be good.  We saw a picture of a raspberry pie some fellow on another blog posted in comments that looked great.  No idea what recipe he used but this one appears to be similar.

Friday Dinner Music: Make You Feel My Love

Have loved this song forever. Now Adele is covering it. Found out something I NEVER knew. Bob Dylan wrote it.

Friday Recipe Exchange: Lots of Kabobs

Kabobs

Happy Labor Day weekend. This will be a quick exchange before I run out the door. Oh, I’m not going anywhere for the weekend, we’re still working on potty training with Bixby. LOL. His latest update is here.

I decided on shish kabobs for the recipe exchange because they are a favorite for large get-togethers. I can prepare them a day ahead and then pop them on the grill when guests arrive. They cook up quick and everyone can get theirs cooked to their idea of perfection. And if you’re lucky and everyone is staying at your house, you can form an assembly line to put them together.

Pictured above is one of my go-to skewers, easy marinade and simple to assemble for a small family dinner or a big get-together. It’s equal parts vegetable oil, soy sauce, lemon juice, and toss in some crushed garlic cloves. Mix together and marinate cubed pieces of steak (sirloin works well) for at least an hour or overnight. I remove the steak pieces from the marinade and then toss the veggies with the marinade quickly before alternating meat, vegetables and pineapple chunks on skewers. The ones above really need some cherry tomatoes, too. Grill over high heat, turning frequently until steak is cooked to desired style.

Some other fun food on a stick:

Fajita Chicken and Vegetable Kabobs can be found here.

Grilled Chicken and Papaya Skewers are here.

Lamb Kabobs recipe is here.

And a variety of other Marinades can be found here, to create any number of skewers to grill.

What’s on your plate for the weekend? Grilling anything tasty?

For tonight’s featured recipe, I thought it would be fun to make sure dessert was included in the mix.

Spicy Fruit Kabobs

You can substitute or add any fresh fruit you’d like in this recipe. 

  • 1 cantaloupe or honeydew melon, seeded
  • 2 pears, cored
  • 2 apples, cored
  • 2 bananas, peeled & quartered
  • 8 wooden skewers, soaked in water
  • ½ cup warmed honey
  • ½ cup warm water
  • ¼ cup limejuice
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded & chopped
  • 1 to 2 tsp chili paste

13×9 glass baking dish, blender

Cut fruit into large chunks, alternate fruit on skewers, ending with banana chunks to hold fruit in place. Place in baking dish. Blend together honey, water, lime, jalapeno & chili paste until smooth. Pour over fruit. Let set during dinner (approximately 30 minutes at room temperature. Grill over low coals 5-7 minutes, basting with marinade. Serve immediately.

Banana Split Kabobs

(serves 4)

  • 12 fresh large strawberries, hulled
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 bananas, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 12 fresh pineapple chunks
  • pound cake, cut into 2-inch cubes
  • chocolate syrup
  • shredded, unsweetened coconut

4 long bamboo skewers, 4 dessert plates

Roll strawberries in sugar, coating lightly. Alternate fruit and cake on the skewers. Place on plates and drizzle with chocolate syrup and garnish with coconut. Serve with additional syrup for dipping if desired.

That’s it for this week. Have a safe and fun holiday weekend.  – TaMara

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Bixby Diaries: Week Two

Bixby Diary WK 2 Final

8.20 Fell out of bed last night (I fall out probably once a night), but no one noticed, so I went exploring and found a great treat. (TaMara’s note: Shelby, Einstein, Duncan, Coty and Sadie are going to come back and haunt me because they were NEVER allowed on the bed or other furniture).

8.21 Today I learned about timeouts. While biting a litter mate is expected, biting one’s person is frowned upon. (TaMara’s note: the timeout was more for me than him. Really took me by surprise nipping at my face)

8.22 My person cleans out the kitty potty spots every morning. This morning I decided to help her by carrying the plastic bag. I was rewarded for my good deed with a fun game of chase. Also worked really hard to climb onto the couch for naptime. (TaMara’s note: Sigh, let the haunting begin, because I let him sleep there).

Sleepy puppy

8.23 Went for a walk in a new place today. Lots of water, flowers, weeds and great smells. My person calls it the Ponds. I’m still unsure about getting too far from the house or car, I’m not all that impressed by my person’s ability to smell her way back. I don’t think her eyes are all that good, either. So far my vigilance has kept us from losing our way.

Time to Smell

8.24 Woke up this morning and found out I could now easily reach the counters by standing on my back legs. How awesome is that!  I must have grown a whole inch last night. So much to see up there.  (TaMara’s note: No, no, not awesome)

8.25 Spent a lot of time in the car today, I usually like my crate, but today I thought it would be fun to howl and bark. When we got home, I got another timeout, this time for chasing the cats. Is it my fault they run away all the time? (TaMara’s note: Again, timeout more for the cats and my sanity)

8.26 My person works too much, so I decided to take over her desk. She’ll have to find something else to do.

Desk surfing

8.27 Spent the day at the office again. Boooring. Came home and power napped. I feel a growth spurt coming on.

So sleepy

8.28 Big day. Learned sit and come – because steak, baby! I do anything for bits of steak. Also went to the vet for my weekly weigh in – and got to meet my vet. Got a shot and didn’t even feel it. I’m a big boy! 27.6 lbs and 17 inches at my shoulders. I’ll be 10 weeks old on Saturday.

See you next week, or when my person has time to type for me – BixbyPaw pring

Dinner Menu: Stuffed Burgers and Cajun Sweet Potato Fries

Stuffed Burger Uncut Snap

Thought it was time for some end-of-summer burgers. I make these all the time because they really are easy and a great way to have a cheese burger without losing half the cheese to the grill. And the sweet potato cajun fries are the perfect sweet, spicy combo.  Grill some plums or peaches and dinner is done. Enjoy.

On the board tonight:

  1. Jalapeno-Cheddar Stuffed Burgers
  2. Kaiser Rolls
  3. Cajun Sweet Potato Fries
  4. Raw Vegetable Tray
  5. Plums

Jalapeno-Cheddar Stuffed Burgers

Stuffed Burger Final

Ingredients for each burger:

  • 4 oz ground beef
  • salt, pepper
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp crushed garlic (opt)
  • 1 oz sharp cheddar, sliced thin
  • 2 or more slices of pickled jalapenos

Mix salt, pepper and garlic into the ground beef. Form two, 2-oz patties. Place jalapenos on one burger, cheese on the other.

Prep2

Place the two sides together and seal the edges completely. Gently flatten the burger, but be careful because you don’t want the cheese busting out of the center.

Prep1a

The key to grilling or frying these is low and slow. Medium heat seals them and allows the cheese to melt without drying the burger out. I flipped at the 5 minute mark, but depending on the heat, 3-4 minutes may be enough to flip. They’re thin, so the beef cooks quickly, but you want to make sure the cheese melts. I would say minimum 4 minutes per side.

If cheese starts to leak out, flip and flip again as needed. DON’T press down on these burgers while you grill, you’ll have a cheesy mess.

Now the warning. Did I say WARNING? Yes I did. You’ll need to rest these burgers to let the cheese cool a bit. Otherwise you could be biting into a scalding cheese center. You’ve been WARNED.

That’s the basics, now let your imagination run wild. Maybe I should have titled this, How To Stuff A Wild Burger.

Cajun Sweet Potato Fries

  • 3 large sweet potatoes, scrubbed and peeled
  • 1 to 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp Cajun seasoning
  • ¼ tsp cumin (opt)

large bowl or baking dish and baking sheet

Cut potatoes into quarters lengthwise, then cut each quarter into 2 or 3 lengthwise slices. In bowl, toss with remaining ingredients and place in a single layer on baking sheet. Bake at 450° for 15 minutes, turn and bake an additional 10 to 15 minutes, until golden brown outside and tender inside.

Plums

If you grilled the burgers you can also grill the plums. Slice in half, remove the pits and grill over low heat

Shopping List:

  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 4 oz shredded cheddar or jalapeno jack
  • sliced jalapenos (I use pickled)
  • 4 green onions
  • 1 tomato
  • 3 large sweet potatoes
  • 4 large Kaiser rolls
  • Favorite raw vegetables
  • Vegetable dip
  • 4 to 8 plums

Also: cumin, Cajun spice, sugar, salt, pepper, olive oil, crushed garlic

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Tidbits

DSC_4847 (1600x1060)Lots of praying mantises today.  This one had a hold on a hummingbird before Mrs J, hearing a small commotion in the bush, reached in to rescue it.  She said she thought it was hung in a spiderweb at first and only saw the mantis when the bird’s foot didn’t come clear.DSC_4857 (1600x1060)This fellow is in the coleus but isn’t the same one from the other day.  That one had green eyes.  I’m not sure if mantises can change colors, a quick search found answers all over the map.  Some said yes, some no, and a few were firmly in the sometimes camp.DSC_4855 (1600x1060)I’m pretty sure this one is the same one from before.  He is in a green coleus right next to the vari-colored one, both of them in pots Mrs J has set in the shade of a small crabapple tree.DSC_4858 (1600x1060)My habaneros are loving this August heat.  I picked this bush once already and there are as many ripe now as before.  These are more than I will use.  Need any?DSC_8964 (1600x1060)We’re loving the big slicer tomatoes the garden is producing.  They are perfect for BLTs, or BELTs, as is the case here.DSC_4845 (1600x1060)Toby is still not sure I won’t do something to him he won’t like.  Ginger plays with him quite a bit and Toby doesn’t seem to mind, but let Homer come by and there will be trouble.  Toby has taken a serious dislike to that boy and we’ve had to separate them lest fur fly and the dogs become fearful for their own safety.DSC_8971 (1600x1060)I’ll close with a few more sammiches.  I fired up the panini press for this reuben and all the cheese ran out.  The pickle is a bread and butter spear.  Tasty!DSC_8968 (1600x1060)Last is a mushroom Swiss burger.  I sauteed some brown buttons in butter and olive oil, added beef stock with cornstarch for a thickener, and ladled them all over the cheese covered patty.  It’s a classic burger recipe, and for good reason.

Life According To Bixby: Falling Off The Bed

 

Bixby Life and falling out of bed

 

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