Friday, June 27, 2014

Shrimp & Grits

I found this recipe on Pinterest and was so excited to try it.  My kids actually really love shrimp but they had not tried grits.  They liked the grits okay but gobbled up the shrimp.  My husband also really enjoyed this.

Shrimp and Grits - click to link to the recipe.

Recipe notes:  I pretty much made this recipe as described.  But I used 2 cups of broth in place of the water and bouillon cube, because that is what I had.  I also used my own Cajun Spices, adjusted for this recipe and to reduce the heat for my kiddos.  See spice adjustment below:

1/2 t seasoned salt
3/4 t garlic powder
3/4 t onion powder
Pinch white pepper
1/2 t black pepper
Pinch cayenne pepper
1/2 t thyme
1/8 t oregano

Gluten-free notes:  Grits should be gluten-free but check the label for those and the broth.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Cajun Spices

I recently made a couple of recipes that called for cajun spice mix.  When I looked at the grocery store, I was surprised to find that the first ingredient for this spice mix was often salt, and lots of it.  So, I decided to make my own spice mix for both recipes. 

The spice mix I use came from a little cajun cooking cookbook that I am pretty sure is out of print.  A guy I used to work for, of Creole descent, gave me a copy of the book.  He frequently made many of the recipes and said the book was a good representation of the kinds of foods his family used to make.  I will share the recipes soon.  The recipe below is the basic spice mix.  I generally adjust it to our taste, depending on what I am making.

Cajun Spices
Source:  Step-by-Step Cajun Cooking by Confident Cooking 

1 T garlic powder
1 T onion powder
2 t white pepper
2 t cracked black pepper
1 ½ t cayenne pepper
2 t dried thyme
½ t dried oregano

Mix the spices together and store in a spice jar.  Makes 4 2/3 tablespoons or 14 teaspoons of mix.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Simple Summer Shower

Happy 1st day of summer!!  We had a baby shower this weekend for a dear friend of mine.  My husband and I are perfectly content with our two kids are not planning any more.  So, I LOVE to celebrate and play with my friends' and families' new babes.  I am so excited about this little baby coming in a few weeks.

At the shower, we had a light dinner with dessert.  It was perfect for a bunch of ladies ohhing and ahhing over little baby things.  I wanted to share the food menu with you, of which most items were allergy friendly!  I tried to serve things that could be prepared ahead of time and did not require a lot of last minute cooking.  I also tried to have a nice variety so regardless of food sensitives there would be something for everyone. 
Here is a picture of the food for the shower.  We had . . .

      Tossed Salad:  field greens, romaine, tomato, red onion, cucumbers, grilled chicken with
          Panera Bread Balsamic Vinaigrette (Egg-free, Dairy-free, sources say Gluten-free)
      Herb Breadsticks (Egg-free, Dairy-free)
      Shrimp cocktail with cocktail sauce (Egg-free, Dairy-free, Gluten-free)
      Pigs in a Blanket (Egg-free, Dairy-free)
      Chilled Cheese Tortellini with Pesto 
      Fruit:  Pineapple, cantaloupe, honeydew, grapes, strawberries, watermelon (Egg-free,
         Dairy-free, Gluten-free)
      Cheese cubes (Egg-free, Gluten-free)
      Iced Water (Egg-free, Dairy-free, Gluten-free)
      Iced Tea (Egg-free, Dairy-free, Gluten-free)

For dessert we had a light punch, sugar cookies and decant chocolate cake!
      Punch:  equal parts ginger ale and white grape juice with an ice ring made from punch and fresh
         strawberries (Egg-free, Dairy-free, Gluten-free)

My friend made this beautiful chocolate cake filled with chocolate ganache and fresh raspberry and topped with with butter cream frosting.  So beautiful!  So Delicious! 

 Here is a picture of the pretty center pieces for the shower.  I bought bulk light blue painted hydrangeas from Sam's Club.  The flowers were delivered two days prior, as requested.  They were so lovely.  It was the best deal ever for flowers for an event.  My friend made the darling containers out of baked bean cans covered with yarn!  Would you have ever guessed that?!  So cute!  Then we put them on white fabric table cloths with a strip of silver mesh.  It was simple but so nice.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Ham and Cheese Crescents

Techincally, summer hasn't even started yet and my schedule is already crazy busy.  So, I am way behind on posting ideas for June.  I am going to post something quick I made a while ago but never posted.  If you need a quick easy summer meal, try these ham and cheese crescents.

If you like this recipe,  you may also like Pizza Roll Ups (EF).

Ham and Cheese Crescents

2 tubes of refrigerated crescent rolls
16 think slices of ham
8 slices of cheese, halved

Fold up ham and place with half a slice of cheese on unrolled crescent.  Rull up and put seam side down on baking sheet.  Bake according to the directions on the crescent roll tube.

Makes 16