Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Kix Brooks Jambalaya

Hubby and I watched "You've Got Mail" last night on the CMT channel.  I never watch the CMT channel because I don't listen to country music, as a matter of fact, I can't stand it!  But please don't judge.  Anyways, during commercial breaks this guy, Kix Brooks is not only a country music star but he has come out with his own cookbook titled, "Cookin' It With Kix".  So during the commercials breaks, he and his hostess (can't remember who she is or her name) made this dish and I watched it intently just as I did the movie.  It looked so good!  Oh the power of suggestion, I fall for it every time!!  I went to the store today to buy the ingredients I needed.  I made half the recipe only because it's just hubby and I and I knew I would still have leftovers.  I will include the the original recipe (Kix' version) and will add my version in parenthesis.

1 4-6 lb. chicken or duck (I used two boneless chicken breasts)
2 tbsps. KB's Shreveport Shake seasoning or other Cajun/Creole seasoning.  (I used Old Bay seasoning)
2 tbsps. vegetable oil (I used canola)
1 lb. andouille sausage cut into 1/4 inch slices
2 cups chopped yellow or white onions (I used half of one yellow)
1 cup chopped green or red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped celery (completely forgot to buy this so I used a tsp. of celery seed)
1 tsp. salt ( I ended up not using salt at all)
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 cups peeled, seeded, and chopped tomatoes - optional (I used one)
1 tbsp. chopped garlic
3 bay leaves (I used two)
2 cups long-grain rice, white or brown
2 tsps. minced fresh thyme
2 quarts chicken broth (I used one)
1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup minced flat-leaf parsley

 Season the chicken with two tablespoons of the seasoning.  Heat oil in a large heavy pot over medium-high heat.

Add the chicken (skin side down) and sear for 5 minutes.  Turn and sear the other side for 3 minutes.  Remove chicken from the pot and drain on paper towels.

Add the sausage to the pot and cooking, stirring until browned.

Add the "Holy Trinity" of onions, bell pepper and celery (remember I used celery seed) and salt, cayenne pepper and black pepper. 

 Cook, stirring often until the veggies are softened, about 5 minutes.

 Add the tomatoes, garlic and bay leaves and cook, stirring until the tomatoes release some juice, about 2 minutes.

Add the rice

Cook, stirring for 2 minutes.

Add the broth and thyme, stir

Add the chicken and bring it to a boil.  Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and simmer.

Stir occasionally until rice is done about 30 minutes.
Season the shrimp with remaining seasoning and add the shrimp to the pot.  Cook until the shrimp turn pink, about 5 minutes.  Remove pot from heat and let set for 15 minutes.

Serve immediately and garnish with green onions and parsley

Today is National Gumbo Day but I made Jambalaya instead!  This bowl was full of goodness, it had 3 of my favorite meats, chicken-shrimp and andouille sausage.  One bowl was plenty though and I'm so glad there are leftovers to have for lunch tomorrow.  I made this dish all because I watched "You've Got Mail" and I recorded it so I can watch it again.  I say this is a win-win!!

Until next time,

Friday, August 5, 2016

Sweet and Sour Trout

1 lb. trout fillets boned and skinned
1/4 cup cornstarch
4 tablespoons sesame oil
2 tbsps. sherry cooking wine
1 green pepper, cut into 1" pieces
1 red pepper cut into 1" pieces
1 medium onion cut into 1/4 wedges and separated
8 oz. can of pineapple chucks, drained, RESERVING all juice
2 cups cooked rice (white or brown)

1/2 cup pineapple juice
2 tbsps. brown sugar
2 tbsps. cornstarch
2 tbsps. cooking sherry wine
2 tbsps. vinegar
2 tbsps. catsup
2 tbsps. soy sauce

 Before you start on anything, if the rice isn't cooked yet, do it now. 
 I like to cook rice in our handy dandy rice cooker.  Just throw it in the pot, cover and leave it until it's ready.

Next, make the Sweet and Sour sauce.  In a small bowl, combine all sauce ingredients.
Mix well,  set aside.

Heat sesame oil in a large skillet over medium heat.

Pat the trout fillets dry with paper towels and dredge in cornstarch.

Cook the fillets for 5-7 minutes on each side.  Upon turning add 2 tbsps. of the sherry cooking wine.

Remove trout from pan and place on a platter, cover with foil to keep warm.

Heat 2 tbsps. of Sesame oil to the same skillet.  Add peppers and onions.  Stir fry for 3 minutes.  I stir fried mine a little longer just because I like my vegies a little chard and more tender.

Add the sauce mixture to the skillet with the vegetables.

Stir sauce until it thickens.

 Add the pineapple chunks and cooked till heated.

Serve with rice and enjoy!
Back during the Independence Day weekend, my hubby, our son and grandson, brother-in-law chartered a boat to go out on Lake Michigan to go fishing.

Here is our son holding the actual Lake Trout we just had for dinner tonight :)

Here are the men returning from their fishing trip.

I have never cooked trout before in my life but I figured it was similar to cooking Tilapia or perhaps even Salmon.  I googled the lake trout recipe and as soon as I saw the link to this recipe and knew I had to look no more.  This recipe is copied from  I knew I couldn't go wrong with that selection. 

Hubby loved this dish much more than I expected.  It was so good he even asked for seconds!!  Shhh! Don't tell his doctor! ;)  I loved it as well, when I read "Sweet and Sour" you didn't have to ask me twice.  I now know how to cook trout! :)

Until next time,

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Latest Creations for Sale

My days are overwhelmingly busy. I started my own small business  from home with the help from my hubby who is also my financial  advisor. I am an artist/handcrafter. I repurpose pallets to turn into all kinds of rustic signs but also use pine boards to paint on.

My son and grandson also came up for a visit during the holiday weekend, their first visit since our move up here to NW Mi.

I sell most of my hand painted items at a local artisan shop but I've also been busy with some custom work.

Here is what's keeping me busy:

I'm so fascinated with retro travel posters. The artistry involved in them can keep me busy studying them for hours. So, I was inspired to create one for our small resort town.

This is a custom made sign I made for a client.

Pinterest inspired

Pinterest inspired

Pinterest inspired

and then here's my small collection of business signs titled,
 "Taking Care of Business":

You can tell which ones are double sided. So you do is flip the sign around.

My grandson. We had the opportunity to introduce him to his Native American roots at our annual Powwow.

Please follow me on social media:

I have to run now, I work at the shop all afternoon through closing time. Miss and love you guys but I continue to read your post blogs to see what's going on!  Have a great weekend!!