Monthly Archives: May 2013

Crockpot Beer Black Beans

Black Beans

Black Beans

Here’s an easy way to cook your black beans. They are perfect eaten all alone and absolutely wonderful in nachos.


  • 8 oz dried Black Beans, that’s about half a bag. Stones picked out, rinsed and soaked in water overnight. Drain before putting in the crockpot.
  • half a good-sized onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • half a jalapeno, minced
  • 1 heaping TB Chicken Base
  • 1 bottle of Beer, 12 ounces
  • 2 cups water.

Place all the ingredients in your crockpot, stir well. Cook on high for 2 hours, then reduce the heat to low and cook the rest of the day. (At least a total of 7 hours). Season with salt and pepper if needed before serving. They are ready to eat when they are soft and fully cooked. Try using them in Nachos, burritos or all on their own. These beans are also great for re-fried beans.


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Posted by on May 22, 2013 in Beans, Rice


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Cranberry Cherry Coffee Cake

Cranberry & Cherry Coffee Cake

Cranberry Cherry Coffee Cake

There’s nothing better on a lazy weekend morning than a delicious coffee cake. This recipe won’t disappoint.

Topping Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
  • 2 TB unsalted butter, softened, diced

DSC_1010 (2)Batter Ingredients:

  • 1 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup fresh tart cherries
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 1 egg, beaten with a fork
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 TB brown sugar

Preheat your oven to 375 and butter a cake pan.

In a small mixing bowl combine all the topping ingredients and stir well. Using your fingers work the softened diced butter into the mixture. If you’re not a fan of using your fingers a pastry cutter will work just fine. Set aside when finished.

Using a food processor or blender process the cranberries and cherries until they are well minced.

In a large bowl combine the sugar, shortening and egg, thoroughly mix using a rubber spatula. Add in the milk and stir until the sugar has dissolved. In a second bowl sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Using your fingers crumble the brown sugar into this flour mixture. Blend the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Fold in the cranberry cherry mixture. Spread the batter into the cake pan. Sprinkle with the topping mixture. Bake 40 to 50 minutes. The coffee cake is done baking when a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. 


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Posted by on May 18, 2013 in Breakfast


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Cilantro Jalapeno Crema

Cilantro Jalapeno Crema

Cilantro Jalapeno Crema

Want an authentic, traditional crema sauce just like you find when vacationing in Mexico. Here it is and it’s easier than you think to make.


  • 3 TB fresh Cilantro
  • half a Jalapeno
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 TB Queso Fresco
  • 1 cup Mexican Crema
  • pinch of salt

Using a food processor add all of the above ingredients and process until smooth. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before using.

Tips: When using Jalapeno remember that if you like mild heat then remove the seeds and membrane, but if you like it hot leave them in place. I love using this crema when making my nachos, but it’s also great on tacos or taquitos.


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S’mores Chocolate Bark

S'mores Chocolate Bark

S’mores Chocolate Bark

After making the Easter Chocolate Bark I just had try my hand at making a S’mores Chocolate Bark. So easy and oh so good. Here’s my recipe, give it a try.


  • 1 package of Graham Crackers, whole
  • 1 @12 oz bag of  Nestle’s Chocolate Chips
  • 1 TB shortening
  • 3 cups miniature white marshmallows

Line a cookie sheet or baking pan with parchment paper, then place the graham crackers on the paper.

You’ll need a medium size sauce pan and a large Pyrex bowl that sits well atop of that pan along with a rubber spatula.

Fill the pan with about 2-inches of cold water, or enough to simmer while not touching the Pyrex bowl when placed atop of it. Heat the water over medium heat until the water starts to steam. Place the bowl on top. Combine the shortening and chocolate chips in the bowl and start stirring. Melting the chocolate and shortening will take 5 to 7 minutes or so. (Slow is safe) Stir constantly and remove the bowl when the chocolate chips are almost completely all melted. Place the bowl on top of a towel to absorb any water residue that has gathered on the outside. (If water gets into your chocolate it will be ruined.) Quickly stir in the marshmallows. Spread the chocolate marshmallow mixture evenly over your Graham Crackers and freeze for about 20 minutes. Remove from the freezer and cut into pieces. 


Suggestions: The next time I make these I’ll try crushing one more package of Graham Crackers and sprinkling them over the top of the chocolate mixture before freezing.


Posted by on May 11, 2013 in Desserts


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Beer Bread


Generally when I’m making Beer Bread I add different cheeses or herbs. Never the same way and I make it often. Today I thought why not just make a simple beer bread recipe. So here is my beer bread base recipe. (Sorry about my photo, I forgot to snap a picture until I had the leftovers all wrapped up.)


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 TB plus 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 TB sugar
  • 1 bottle of Beer, 12 ounces, (Consider the beer’s flavor and how it will affect the taste of your finished bread, I usually use regular Budweiser.)
  • 3 TB salted butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 and butter a bread loaf pan.

In a large bowl sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Stir in the light brown sugar and sugar. Pour the beer in and mix with a wooden spoon until blended. Pour the bread batter into the buttered loaf pan and pour the melted butter over the top. Bake for 50-60 minutes. The bread is done when a toothpick inserted in the middle of the bread comes out clean.


Posted by on May 8, 2013 in Breads


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Collard Greens

Collard Greens

Collard Greens

I  have fallen in love with Collard Greens. But the last time I picked them up I forgot to pick a pork shank to cook them with. “Paula Deen’s” recipe was the only way I knew to prepare them. Well the other thing I forgot about is that Paula’s recipe takes 2 hours to cook and I only had 45 minutes before dinner. So here is what I did.

Ingredients:  serves 2 people

  • 1 bunch of Collard Greens
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 heaping tablespoon of bacon grease
  • 1/2 a stick of salted butter
  • 1 TB Hot Sauce
  • 1 TB all meat seasoning
  • 1/2 an onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

DSC_0947In a medium pot combine the chicken broth, bacon grease, butter, hot sauce, all meat seasoning, onion and garlic and over high heat bring to a boil. While your waiting for the boil rinse the Collard Greens and remove the leaves from the stem. Toll them up and slice them in about 1/2-inch wide strips. Add the strips to the boiling ingredients, lower heat to medium, cover and simmer for 30 minutes until the greens are tender. Strain and serve.


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Leftover Turkey Enchiladas

Turkey Enchiladas

Turkey Enchiladas

So you need a quick and easy dinner, or you just need to go shopping but also need to cook one more dinner before going out. Enchiladas or Casserole?  Well for me enchiladas are a casserole. I make them in the traditional style and I also use all kinds of leftovers to make them. That’s how I was taught many years ago to use up my leftovers.

This recipe is one I threw together when I needed to go grocery shopping but also needed to make dinner. Lucky for me I always have leftovers of some kind in the freezer.


  • a couple of cups of leftover turkey pieces, diced
  • about 1/2 cup leftover sweet corn kernels
  • half an onion, diced
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • seasonings consist of cumin, cayenne pepper and salt
  • 12 corn tortillas, I always have tortillas in my freezer, broke down by the dozen
  • a couple of cups of enchilada sauce, that I had in the freezer, but please use canned if needed
  • a couple of cups of shredded cheddar cheese, I always have a mexican blend of shredded cheese in my freezer
  • a couple handful of fresh spinach, shredded

Preheat your oven to 350 and spray a baking dish with a pan spray.

DSC_0906Combine the turkey pieces, sweet corn, onion, garlic and about 1/2 a cup of the cheese. Sprinkle with some cumin, cayenne pepper and salt, toss everything well. Use warmed and soft corn tortillas, I heat mine in the microwave. Spoon about a tablespoon of the meat mixture in the center of the tortilla and firmly roll up. Work your way through the dozen tortillas placing them side by side in the baking dish. Once all the enchiladas are in the dish spoon the enchilada sauce over the top of them, making sure every single one is well covered. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese over the top of that. Cover the baking dish with foil that has been sprayed with a pan spray so that the cheese doesn’t stick to it. Bake covered for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 20 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve over the shredded spinach, it’s an easy way to get your greens in.

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Posted by on May 4, 2013 in Casseroles, Left-Over Delights


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