that time of year..

I am in looooove with the holidays. Love all the movies, music (especially!), family… and could we even forget… the glorious FOOD. I am very excited for the upcoming holidays and even more so because in just a few days we are flying home to my hometown. Yay πŸ™‚ Lots of food to be enjoyed there, one thing Texas is far from short on is food. While the rest of the world starves, Texans are only getting fatter. πŸ™‚
Bring on the Tex-Mex and pumpkin pie! Yessss!
Now I have to face the fire and get back to my food blogging. Like seriously. Yeah it’s kinda fallen by the way side because my camera went kaput. But! I do have a recent photo.
We are eating light this week due to our travel but tonight we are having either baked potatoes (hah, surprise!) or MorningStar chicken patties (had to try them).
I just got the recent Rachael Ray (seriously, dont hate) and have really gotten into her recipes that are under $10. Realistically, they are not under $10. If you don’t have any of the ingredients and feeding just 2 people…not under $10. You buy up all the stuff and you end up with slimy parsley and a whole jar of pickled jalapeΓ±os that sit in your fridge because lets face it, you’re NEVER gonna use.

Well my mission was obviously clear: find a recipe with ingredients we already have. (‘member that whole blog post? ahhh!) Like a melon in a pumpkin patch, there was the perfect recipe in her latest mag. And super easy and was a bona fide 30-minute meal. Took me less time, in fact.
And what we had was a yummy, healthy, hearty meal:

Couscous with chicken, broccoli, raisins & sliced almonds
….super easy, and I’m going to make this quick: cook one box of couscous (according to directions *but* with chicken stock, not water!), season & cook 1 lb. skinless, boneless chicken breast in a large saucepan. remove from pan and shred with the back of a fork. add cut up broccoli, one cup chicken stock to pan and cook until broccoli is tender. add couscous and chicken to pan and stir. toss in 1/2 cup of raisins. serve with sliced almonds on top. voila!

Thanks Rach!

I won’t be in blogger-mode at all this week. I will be visiting friends and family for the Thanksgiving holiday but expect a Texas-sized (hah) update when I get back.
Happy Thanksgiving!! and happy cooking & eating!!

enjoy your turkeys!

C

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o.em.gee!

Ah! My camera is dunzo!!!! 😦 I dont know what happened. Its turning on and off and focusing by itself. Super nonproductive for this blog thing I have going here. I will proceed to totally stoop to a new low and show you pictures of food that I have now had to take with my: phone. 😦

I have not blogged in DAYS! Ahh!! 😦 So sad.

I didn’t cook that much over the weekend: Brandy Burridge Photography crashed at our place so they could shoot a wedding in West Palm Beach.

Tuesday night I made chicken fried steak, cornbread and black-eyed peas. (Besides chicken fried chicken…my fav dinner EVER. Please serve this when I am on my death bed. Thanks!) This wasn’t my infamous cfs. I usually use tons-o-buttermilk when making this dish but I had none. So I had to sub heavy cream. But, it came out just as good… I guess… Ok, it didnt. At all.

But one thing I do love now and I never even had thought of dreaming up before was the whole black-eyed peas, mayonnaise, onions, cornbread concoction. Awhile back at my husband’s dad’s house, we were all sitting around the ol’ picnic table about to dig into our dinner, when along comes B outta the house with the weirdest looking crap on her plate. The weird crap was, in fact, a goopy mixture of black-eyed peas, a heaping scoop of mayonnaise with onions and crumbled cornbread on top. Not being a food snob, I totally tried it and kinda loved it. From then on… I can be seen shoveling the mess on occasion, with my chicken fried steak. And can’t forget the sliced tomato. (Which we totally had and is not pictured.) And what’s also missing is cream gravy. 😦 Oh well… I kinda pulled this dinner outta my butt anyway.

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See? Very delish. And you can only use Duke’s, of course. πŸ™‚

enjoy your meals…

C

the lazy cook

This week has been uncharacteristically low key in our kitchen. I think dragging our butts in from a 10-hour drive at 11 p.m. Sunday night has plagued us with weary-syndrome thats carried well into the week, almost to the end. And rent was due on the 1st so our funds have dwindled. No truffles or filet mignon…hmph.

Monday was a dud – had some pizza. (Heh, we all get a little lazy sometimes). So, Tuesday started the week. I actually didn’t make an official menu, per say… just kinda moseyed around Publix, thinking of things we have and don’t have at home and came up with some improv items. One thing I am trying to work on is utilizing what we already have. I have a tendency to always want to get more or newer and fresher without thinking of the stuff we already have and can totally use. I get a little carried away with trying to invent something fabulous and different to eat every night that most things go to waste before using half of it. Shame on me! ..Workin’ on it.

After assessing the fridge situation, we had leftover flour tortillas, spinach and honey mustard dressing, so I decided to make wraps. Really, no need for applause here. It was pretty amateur. Publix has this awesome fried chicken and I really love their plump chicken tenders on occasion, and our favorite way to eat them is in wraps. Spinach, honey mustard, diced tomato, chicken and s&p in a tortilla. There it is. Dinner.

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Last night we had veggie burgers. I have never had a veggie burger, or any other “faux” burger. I’ve never eaten that Morningstar stuff… but have always been a little curious. It’s a little slimy right outta the box but once you slap it in a pan and saute it for a couple minutes, it’s …actually…pretty… good. I sliced sweet potatoes and made oven fries – also one of my favs – sprinkled with cinnamon, paprika, s&p. Once again, that leftover spinach made an appearance and the sliced tomato.

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…And right after that we watched Food, Inc. which, thank heavens it was a veggie burger.. or else I would have been barfing. I cant even tell you how super irritated I got watching that movie. I can’t believe what we’ve been eating! (ALL of us!..yes you, even the healthiest of healthys! You’ve eaten some form of government garbage too!) I need a farmer’s market NOW. Or I need my own farm… far, far away from the grasp of any Monstana reps.

What’s wearing me out right nowΒ is not that the weekend is 3 hours away but that I am absolutely clueless as to what we’re having for dinner. …Macee took a peak into the fridge, not a lot of options. Ahh!

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We still have spinach left… all else fails… πŸ™‚

enjoy your spinach…
C

Auburn eats (it)

JK!
They totally won Saturday and Auburn is a super fun, super cutes little hick town.

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Our weekend in Auburn was just what we needed: good food, victorious AU Tigers football game, cool weather & hoodies. (..and 2 nights of raucous Halloween partying!)
Even though I complained the entire 6 months it was cold in Chicago, I do miss throwing on a hoodie and calling it a day. ..There’s just something about the months of October, November, December that holla for cold weather. Its just weird waking up and the palm trees blowing in the 80-degree-100%-humidity wind… and it’s like, Christmas. Am I right?

So growing up in Texas and all.. I am a downright sucker for fattening, Southern food…. Alabama and Georgia are not short on it either. Once we got to Georgia, driving through the cotton field & pecan tree scenery, Shayne stopped at this humble little joint literally in the middle of nowhere. Couldn’t tell you what city it was in or near.
Fried chicken, catfish sandwiches… mmm good ol’ country cookin!

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Once we arrived in glorious Auburn, we found our way to the infamous, Momma Goldberg’s. It’s like THAT place you HAVE to eat at when you go to Auburn. In all honesty, yes, it was good but I am kinda irritated with them for messing up my order. Yeah, so I am one of those orderers.. (“I’d like the Ceasar salad with the dressing on the side, hold the anchovies, no croutons and extra pickle juice”) but c’mon. I ordered the cheese sandwich, with provolone instead of the American cheese, on sourdough instead of the wheat bun. How hard, people? …how hard?…
But THESEEEE were stupendous!!
Doritos + Monterey Jack + Jalapenos + Steamed = D E L I S H

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Shayne went for his usual turkey delight sandwich. I should’ve just shared with him 😦 My cheese sandwich was not so great 😦

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Hot dogs at the game.. num-nums. Then a horrible, ordered-in pizza to our room. OMG. Whatever pizza place that was, whoever you are, I forgot the name (you better be glad), was grotesque. 😦
And we managed to slither our drunken heads into Waffle House, for some yummy waffle, horrible hash browns and window tagging. (I hate Waffle House, fyi).

The only thing I regrettably didn’t get my hands on was Whataburger. But, we stopped at a little bbq place just off 75 somewhere in north Florida and got some of THESE:
Yep, you got it, fried green ‘maters on a styrofoam plate. Golly, I love the South. And..psh.. hello, can’t eat those without sweet tea to wash it down with.

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tea
So now I must get back to work. I have been so behind on this blog, ugh, and it’s bugging me! Our internet doesn’t work at home. Not too much going on in the kitchen this week, we had veggie burgers last night…ahhhh! OK, so they werent that bad. I actually brought one to work for lunch πŸ™‚ And the other night we just had plain baked potatoes and chicken/spinach wraps. Yummy, but very anticlimactic for a food blog. With that… I say, adios!

enjoy your *southern* meals… πŸ˜‰
C