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Category Archives: appetizer

Marinated Chicken Wings – Our Super Bowl Choice

As I have been shopping in the grocery stores over the past week, I have been amazed at all the party food that is available for the Super Bowl.  It has truly become an event that includes food and it includes some of our favorite appetizers and fun time foods. I  I think by now many of us have broken all of our New Year’s resolutions and are ready for a special treat.

We will have the usual of chip and dip, cheese and crackers and the marinated chicken wings I am sharing with you today.  This recipe was sent to me by my California cousin and it seems to be a good one and easy to make.

Marinated Chicken Wings

20 whole chicken wings (about 4 lbs.)

1 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup white wine or chicken broth

1/4 cup canola oil

1 tbsp sugar

2 garlic cloves/minced

1 tsp ground ginger.

Cut chicken wings into 3 sections and discard the wing tips.  Put wings in large resealable plastic bag.

In small bowl whisk the remaining ingredients until blended

Add to chicken wings, seal bag and turn to coat – refrigerate overnight

Transfer chicken and marinade to slow cooker.  Cook covered on low for 3 to 4 hours until tender.

Using tongs transfer to plate and serve.

I love buffalo wings but sometimes they are just too hot and spicy.  This seems to be a a great alternative.

I hope you are planning a great Super Bowl Sunday with special friends and family.  We aren’t big sports fans anymore but we do love the food that goes along with the game.

Thanks for stopping by.


A Snowy Weekend – Let’s Have Barbecued Meatballs

Over the weekend we had a significant snowfall here in the foothills of North Carolina.  Actually, it is my favorite type of snowfall.  It began on Friday afternoon with big fluffy flakes of snow.  It continued through the night and snowed for a short period of time on Saturday morning.  I think our accumulation totals was eight inches.

Another reason I liked this snow is because it happened on the weekend and we didn’t have to go to work and could just enjoy watching it snow.  I was also appreciative of the fact that it was snow and not sleet or freezing rain.  The kids in our neighborhood had a good time in the snow but it was extremely cold all weekend.  Of course, I don’t think kids ever admit they are cold when they are playing in the snow.

Here are some pictures:











Before the snow, I had chosen the following recipe to share with you.  I thought it was such a comforting recipe for a cold January day.  Of course, I love barbecue so it really appealed to me.  It is from a recipe book from a local cook that compiled recipes of her friends and family and named the book, “Susie’s Dinner Bell.”



I hope you enjoy the recipe.  If you are experiencing a snowy day, I hope you are safe and warm.  Thanks for stopping by.

Fried Okra

On one of my previous posts I mentioned that I was going to try to fry okra this summer.  I have tried it in the past and had disastrous results.  Surely a southern girl that loves to cook would be able to master this task.  As I have been seeing okra at the farmer’s market weekly, I decided it was time to give it a try.

I searched through my cookbooks for the best recipe.  I chose one from The Glory of Southern Cooking Cookbook by James Villas.  I love the cookbook and it is such a wonderful collection of southern recipes from all over the South.  The recipe I am sharing seemed very traditional and I love James comment about how the fried okra could be served as an appetizer.  Mr. D and I have wondered many times why people in the South and restaurants in the South do no serve fried okra as an appetizer.  I think that is a great idea.IMG_4443

Above is a picture of the fried okra I prepared.  I used an electric skillet instead of a cast iron skillet.  I have a hard time regulating the heat on my stove and that is how I messed up my fried okra the last time I gave it a try.  If I was going to improve on this first attempt at this recipe, I would try for sure to make my pieces of okra a more consistent size.  I also used the fine grain cornmeal and I did not like the texture.  It was almost gummy.  I would try to find the old fashioned corn meal to use.  Also,  when I placed the okra in the batter, I think I should have left it in the batter for a couple of minutes as that seemed to help to coat the okra. By the way, I don’t cook with lard so I used vegetable cooking oil.

I had never heard of parboiling the okra first.  I did that and I think it helped to make the batter adhere to the okra.

Here is the recipe.




We were very happy with the results.  I know many people think okra is just gross; however, if it is prepared correctly that isn’t necessarily true.  I do plan to make this recipe again before the fresh okra disappears at the farmers market.

Thanks for stopping by.

Santa Fe Cheesecake

I love to browse through cookbooks.  When we have an upcoming holiday such as Easter, I start to browse through my cookbooks for new recipes.  I like to mix it up and serve something that has become a tradition in our family along with a couple of new dishes.  I have been contemplating making some type of cheesecake for Easter.  I have made the New York style cheesecake before and was wonderful; however, this year I wanted to do something different.

As I was browsing through some of my cookbooks, I saw this recipe and I think it definitely has a “WOW” factor.  It is an appetizer and combines the wonderful Mexican flavors of green chilies, Monterey Jack cheese and Jalapeno with cream cheese.  As I read through the recipe I saw that it will take some time to prepare this but I do agree with the writer of the recipe that it would be well worth it. This recipe is from Music, Menus and Magnolias by the Charleston Symphony Orchestra of Charleston, South Carolina. It is definitely going into my “Recipes I want to make” file.

santa fe cheesecake

As the NCAA College Basketball tournament is being played now in the US, I thought this would be a great appetizer to serve during the games.  I am not talking about my team this year as they didn’t make the tournament.  The reason they aren’t playing is because they only played half of a season.  Yes, they did show up for all the scheduled games but they only played in the first half.  You can’t make the tournament that way.  However, win or lose, I will always be an NC State fan.

Hope you are enjoying your weekend and thanks for stopping by.

Carolina Panthers – Super Bowl and Alton Brown WIngs

Image result for carolina panthers

I have to say that I am getting excited about the Super Bowl game on Sunday and the possibility of the Carolina Panthers winning it all as they play the Denver, Broncos.  I live about 60 miles from Charlotte and that is the home of the Panthers.  Needless to say, there is a lot of hype and excitement about the game here.  For some time I have not been that excited about professional sports in general.  I do watch Nascar and that is or was a very Southern thing at one time.  Most professional sports have become so corporate and I know from my corporate days that it is a “meet and greet” event for so many companies. Lots of people can’t afford the tickets anymore.

However, I did watch the Panthers win the championship game two weeks ago and I have to admit that it was exciting. I know I will be excited again on Sunday Night as we watch the game. Before I share the Chicken Wings Recipe I will be making for Sunday, I do have a few snippets about the Panthers that I want to share with you.  Some of them are from local newscasts over the last couple of weeks.

One of the Panthers defensive players was asked what he thought of playing Peyton Manning and he said if he intercepted one of Peyton’s passes he would then go to Peyton and bow down to him.  I am a BIG Peyton Manning fan too.

The Panthers tradition this year that was started by Cam Newton is to give the football to a child after scoring a touchdown.  I love to see that and the excitement of the kids in the end zone.

Ron Rivera, the coach of the Panthers, had a wonderful sendoff from his neighbors and his yard and neighborhood was decorated with encouraging fans as he left for San Francisco on Sunday.

There was a pep rally in Charlotte last Friday and 30,000 people attended.  On Sunday as the Panthers left for California, people had lined up for hours along their destination route to the airport to cheer them on.

And lastly, I have always thought Payton Manning was such a classy quarterback and have always wanted him to win, but not this time.  I also think that Cam Newton is a great role model.  There has been much criticism about him but when I watched him in the championship game, I saw a player that has a great passion and love for the game.  By the way, Peyton was born in New Orleans and Cam was born in Atlanta.  Hmmmm, just two good old Southern boys that have done good.

Today, I am sharing a link to a food network post of Alton Brown and it is for chicken wings.  It has a video of Alton preparing the wings and I think that is a great help.  Mr. D and I wanted crispy wings that were then basted in a sauce.  That is what appealed to me about Alton’s version. We are looking forward to making these on Sunday.

I hope you will join with me and pull for the Panthers on Sunday.  Winter isn’t my favorite time of the year but the excitement of the Super Bowl has changed my focus and given me something special to look forward to.  I hope the Panthers Keep On Pounding and lots of kids in the end zone get Cam Newton footballs.  YIPPEE!  YAY!  YAY!



Appetizers for New Years Eve: Sausage Balls, Barbequed Franks, Fruited Cream Cheese Dip

As New Year’s Eve is approaching, I wanted to share three recipes that have been part of our celebrations for years.  The sausage balls are great and I can remember having them even as I was growing up in the sandhills of North Carolina.  By the way, they freeze very well if you want to serve some and save some. The barbequed franks are a family favorite and we have them many times during the winter months.  The fruit dip is a special occasion dip and very easy to make.  The first two recipes are from a brochure of recipes that I collected during the very early years of our marriage.  The fruit dip recipe was clipped from a Southern Living Magazine when readers submitted recipes to the magazine for publication.  That was one of my most favorite parts of the magazine when I started subscribing to it.

sausage balls fruit dip cocktail franks

The currant jelly for the barbequed weiners is sometimes hard to find and you may substitute grape jelly.  I am wishing for you a very prosperous and Happy New Year.

Thanks for stopping by.

Baked Pecan Dip, Etc.

As I was preparing this post, I began to go through my South Carolina cookbooks because I wanted to feature a recipe from that great state.  I have two Hilton Head cookbooks that were published in the 80’s and that is where I found the recipes I am sharing with you today. I know this is tailgating season and I can imagine how much you would enjoy one or all of these recipes at your favorite team’s game or race.

I have never heard of pecan dip but I think it would be wonderful with a salty cracker or even a graham cracker.  The other recipes are bonuses as they were on the same page and I thought they were great options.  I love butter pecan ice cream and the idea of southern salted pecans sounds wonderful. (Just add cream)

pecan dipThe recipes are from my Island Events Cookbook published in 1986. The food of Hilton Head is just one of the reasons it is such a special place for us.

I think these recipes would be good for tailgating or any holiday event.  I also think they would be a great surprise when you want to do something extra special for your family.

Thanks for stopping by.


Williamsburg Recipes for Cheese Balls or Cheese Dip

This is an easy post for me as I love Williamsburg and I love cheese.  I had lunch with my friend Dixie this week and afterwards I remembered this wonderful Williamsburg cookbook she gave me recently.  As I browsed through it, I had wonderful memories of visiting Williamsburg.  When you go there it is almost as if you stepped back in time.  It is a Disney World of our past. You learn so much about our country during the colonial days and there are so many fun ways to gain that knowledge.

I have a special fondness for Virginia because it is my favorite place to visit in the fall.  We can get there very quickly from our home and visit the Mabry Mill area and the parkway.  It is charming, not very commercial and exploding with seasonal color.   Here is a picture of Mabry’s Mill that is my header on my blog right now. This is one of the most photographed locations on the Blue Ridge Parkway and is located near Meadows of the Dan, Virginia.

IMG_0503 - Copy

As I was browsing through the from Williamsburg Kitchens cookbook by Kay Willard, I saw the recipes for cheese balls and cheese dip.  As people are tailgating at football games this time of year, I think these would be great.  Also, I think they would be good choices for a Halloween party.  I love cheese and I think these recipes are tried and true recipes.  This cookbook was published in 1968 and I don’t think they have gone out of style.

cheese balls etc

I hope you are experiencing beautiful fall weather and enjoy your weekend.  Thanks for stopping by.

Our Choice For Sunday Dinner – Carolina Okra Beignets

I keep a list of recipes that I want to make.  For a year now, the above recipe has been on that list.  I saw it last Summer in Our State Magazine and clipped it but did not make it before all the fresh okra of the summer had disappeared.  I will tell you that in the past I have not been very successful in making fried okra. I have never been able to fry the okra and have the breading to attach to the okra successfully. This recipe seemed quite different and I loved the idea of adding the green pepper and onion to the okra.

Here is the picture of our okra beignets.


The recipe is time consuming because you do have to slice the okra, chop the onion and bell pepper.  However, compared to making fried okra from scratch it takes about the same amount of time.  I used panko crumbs for my bread crumbs and it made the beignets very crispy.  Also, instead of using a skillet, we used our small deep fat fryer.  Here is the recipe.

okra beignets

The crispiness of the beignet along with the small amount of tabasco sauce made this a great alternative to the fried okra that is usually breaded in cornmeal. This is a great choice for a diabetic because of the small amount of flour and breading included in the recipe.

Mr. D has already asked if we could have this again and I do think this one is a real keeper.  If you haven’t ever tried okra, this would be a great way to sample it.  It is far from the slimy okra that seems so unappetizing.

Thanks for stopping by.

Something Old: Granny’s Peach Pie Something New: Peach Salsa

At our local farmers market peaches are everywhere.  As dry as the weather has been in our area, they have been delicious.  Today I want to share two recipes for peaches that I have shared on this blog before.  The old one is my Granny’s peach pie recipe.  I can remember how wonderful Granny’s house smelled when she baked and she did enjoy baking.  I think this pie is relatively easy to make and so good with fresh peaches.

Granny’s Peach Cobbler

2 and 1/2 cups fresh or canned peach slices

1/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 Tablespoons all purpose flour

1 cup all purpose flour

1 tablespoon sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons shortening

1/3 cup milk

Place peach slices in bottom of one quart casserole.  Mix brown sugar, 2 tablespoons of the flour, and salt;  pour over peaches.  Sift together other dry ingredients; cut in the shortening.  Add milk to make soft dough and drop by teaspoonful over peaches.  Bake in a hot oven   (425 degrees) for 30 to 35 minutes.

The second recipe would be a newer way to use fresh peaches by making peach salsa.  I can’t imagine my Granny ever making it but I will say she was very open to trying new products and ideas.  In fact, the first pizza I ever ate was at my Grannys and even though it was Chef Boyardee I thought it was wonderful.  I made this salsa last weekend and it is easy to make if you don’t mind peeling and chopping.  It does deteriorate very quickly so you must consume it quickly and that isn’t hard to do.  I served it with tortilla scooper chips.

Peach Salsa

1 pound peaches, chopped (  I peeled my peaches even though that isn’t specified in the recipe)

1 small vine ripened tomato, chopped

3-4 green onions, chopped, including part of the green

2 tablespoons pickled jalapenos, chopped

1 and 1/2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon lime juice

1 tablespoon honey

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl and refrigerate.  Can be kept for 3 days in a tighly covered container.  I served my salsa with tortilla chips and corn chips and it was really tasty with just enough heat to be tasty but not overpowering.

I still have a few things I want to make while summer vegetables are available.  This weekend I will make tomato and okra succotash and I still have a couple of other things in mind that I want to try.  Quality fresh okra is coming into season here in North Carolina and who knows I might try a fried okra recipe again as I have never mastered it in the past.

I hope you are enjoying fresh peaches and can prepare something delicious with them.  If you don’t want to take the time to try either one of these recipes, there is nothing better than grilled peaches drizzled with a little honey.  Yum and thanks for stopping by.

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