cajun boiled peanuts

homemade boiled peanuts

Boiled peanuts are a Southern thing, or so I am told. I know nothing different than boiled peanuts. Sure, there are roasted, salted, honey roasted and candied. But: I know boiled. Raw “green” peanuts  boiled in a spicy, salty broth… Cooked peanuts take on a different texture than traditional roasted; they are nutty and meaty, almost like a bean but not as mealy. And, fun to eat, like Edamame. Sometimes; food you have to work at tastes better…. for instance: Seafood. Crab legs, lobster, peel and eat shrimp… Candy. Tootsie pops, blow pops…. And: seeds and nuts: pistachios, sunflower seeds, […]

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corn dog muffins

corn dog bites

Your kids will love these. Don’t have kids? That’s okay… you will love them, too. You don’t love them? That’s okay, too… your dog will be in heaven. No dog? Your cat will paw at it, chase it and eventually eat it on your pillow at 3:42 am. And, probably puke at 4:21am. Because cats puke sometimes. No cat? My goodness… get a Tegu. They eat anything. But, chances are, there won’t be leftovers for your pets. Heck, there might not be any left for your kid, for that matter. Shhhh…. make these in the middle of the night, and […]

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festivals and fair days

Our local fair comes into town every January. When I was a kid, my mom would tell the school that my sister and I had a dental appointment, and pull us out early. In our lunch boxes on “fair day” she would place a tiny note, with a happy face and a ferris wheel picture… and we would excitedly wait in class for the school secretary to come pull us from our class, for our “dental appointment”. As I grew up,  the days of going to the fair with my mom and sister ceased, and I began to prefer the […]

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homemade spaghetti Os

homemade spaghetti Os

Spaghetti-O’™s are one of those quintessential american kid food. Up there with mac and cheese, chicken nuggets, fish sticks, and of course, PB&J. Unfortunately, so many “kids foods” are laden with… well, crap. I’m not a fan of entire meals from a box or a can, and I really try to create from scratch whenever possible. But: there are somethings that are close to impossible to recreate. For example: Spaghetti O’s ™ Because, if you ever look closely, they have three different sized O’s. So…. it has taken me 5 years to re create this perfectly. 5 years hunting down the […]

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Meatless Monday: Smothered Burritos

smothered burritos

 These are what’s for dinner tonight. Vegetarian burritos, smothered in a spicy tomato and green chile sauce and gooey melted cheese. This meal will make you look forward to leftovers, too- because it makes a lot. You’re welcome. Two dinners in one, woo-hoo.    I realize there is a lot of Latin foods here. I just showed y’all homemade tortillas, there’s tamales, and I am pretty sure there will be a post with black beans here shortly. But, remember: I was born and raised (and still living) in south Florida, with lots of Latin influence. So: these are part of […]

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homemade tortillas

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There is something about making homemade tortillas. Something that goes beyond the food aspect of it. Maybe ….it’s because right now in our homeschool  I’m teaching a period of history that is before the discovery of baking powder, yeast or other leavening. Most cooking was done by the meal, and over an open fire.  Maybe…. it’s because there is something about adding water to flour and somehow, a bread like product is produced once you roll it and heat it on a cast iron skillet. Maybe…. it’s because it takes me back to ancient times, where life was more simple […]

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New Years, 2017

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This photo was snapped New Years day, 2017. It’s my daughter, at sunrise on St Augustine beach. Of course, St Augustine is not our home… we were visiting in celebration of our 10 year anniversary. Ten years. So, our mini vacation consisted of a beach sunrise, and lots of delicious nibbles here and there…. Of course, we had to stop at the macaroon shop…   And, we wondered why the girl at the counter decided to crush one of the macaroons in order to fit them in the bag, they were delicious nonetheless. Do you see that sign? DOLE WHIP! […]

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paprika and peppercorn shrimp with spicy sesame sauce

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This is one of those recipes that you want everyone to try. Seriously,  folks -when I made this I was very tempted to run to all of my neighbors and have them try a bite ! Unfortunately, there wasn’t enough of it to go around. (Sorry, everyone!) Succulent shrimp sautéed in a buttery sauce with smoked paprika and fresh cracked pepper. Nestled upon a bed of baby kale and arugula; and drizzled with a spicy sweet sesame and soy  sauce that is downright addictive. But first: let me share something with y’all: I would have never made this recipe if […]

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The Floridian

The Floridian

This, my friends is the Floridian: This is the sunshine state in a glass, with bright ruby red grapefruit,a squeeze of sweet orange, tangy lime, and tropical coconut, poured over ice in a salt rimmed glass, it’s like a visit to the beach that you hold in your hands and drink. Minus the sand and sunburn, of course. As a Florida native, I know these flavors well. When I was a child, my mother would take me to “the groves*” as she would call it, and we would take a tram ride into a forest of citrus trees, pregnant with […]

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sparking wine and glitter

citrus sparkler

Note: This is a sponsored post, however the opinions expressed are my own. This time of year, I tend to see random flecks of glitter…. everywhere. Be it that I have little girls, and nowadays it seems like all the clothing is embedded with glitter, and,  that every holiday card I get in the mail has glitter, and be it that most of my ornaments sparkle with… you guessed it: glitter. So: I’m not surprised when I glance in the mirror to fine glittery specks on my forehead. I’m convinced there is a glitter elf that sprinkles glitter on my […]

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cherry-almond biscotti and other hard things in life

cherry almond biscotti

Spell check does not like the word biscotti. It underlines it for me, in its bright red zig zag pattern, mocking my confidence in cookies. Like the  mother in law that still remembers the times you did not hold to her standards, spell check is there: saying “that is wrong”. Well, spellcheck, it’s right.   Biscotti. The cookie that feels so wrong as you make it. I mean, really: it goes against every typical cookie recipe, because you bake it, slice it and then bake it again… to the point where it’s a cookie rock. But that’s what your coffee […]

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Thanksgiving Heroes

This Thanksgiving, as we embrace the calm after the storm of the presidential election, it’s time to take a step back and reflect on the things we are thankful for; aside from the standard of the individual “inner circle” of blessings, it’s time to reflect on the other people and things we are thankful for. Especially now. Our country is in a state of division; although there was a time, many years ago that we were completely united, we clung to one another and cheered each other on. That wasn’t that long ago. We embraced the first responders, we embraced […]

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butter chicken and other adventures

butter chicken

  Butter Chicken~ (n) : A savory, spicy concoction of Indian spices in a creamy coconut sauce, that makes me wonder why it’s called butter chicken since there really is not that much butter in it to merit a word in the title of the recipe. Mmmmm, Butter Chicken. It took me close to ten years to introduce this to my husband. However: I  have  had “Butter Chicken” on my weekly-monthly-want-to-make list forever. Well, about ten years, but: who’s counting? Oh wait. Me. I’m counting. I’m counting a lot these days. Now, I am down to a count down. But: […]

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breakfast stir fry

breakfast noodles

 Breakfast stir fry, breakfast noodles (n)~ A savory concoction of bacon, spinach and a golden egg to keep you full, happy and nice all day… or at least past 10.   Days when you eat a decent breakfast are worth an extra dish in the sink.  Because, you never know when you might be stranded on the side of a highway waiting on a tow truck. Hungry because your breakfast biscuit and tea wore off thirty minutes after you ate….   and it’s no fun when breakfast  wears off and your hungry tummy makes you (ah-hem) mean. I know you’re not […]

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#reclaiminghappiness

  There are days where it is a battle to maintain an outlook beyond what I can see. There are days when the glimmer of hope in the future is nothing but an ember smoldering on a candle on a birthday cake. A tiny orange hued speck representing the past years, slowly fading away with the stream of smoke vanishing before me. There are days when I am drawn away into the nothingness that the years seemed to have become. Vanishing. I have days when I am lost in the dark, and I struggle to blow it off, much like […]

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