Archive for » October, 2011 «

Halloween: Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

One of my favorite Halloween traditions is bringing the kids to the pumpkin patch to pick out the one that has the best jack-o’-lantern-potential. Mind you this is no easy task, which is why we generally end up transporting three or four worthy candidates back to the house for consideration. Our pumpkin preferences read like a page out of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. My oldest daughter Chandler is always attracted to the largest pumpkin on the lot. But around here, those babies are way too big to fit in the family vehicle (thank God). [ ... ]
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Finger Food Friday: Crabmeat Mornay Tarts

< Sometimes I like taking elegant dishes, you know the ones that are often reserved for special occasions, and make them fun and approachable so they can be enjoyed often and in a more relaxed setting.  That’s what I’ve done with Crabmeat Mornay.  Instead of serving it in a fancy chafing dish or individual ramekins, I spoon the rich, cheesy mixture into mini-phyllo shells and serve them right out of the oven.  By doing so, I able to turn a regal appetizer into a perfectly portioned finger food.  What’s also nice is that the mornay can be made a day in [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Oven Roasted Boudin with Sweet and Tangy Dipping Sauce

South Louisiana is known for producing some really interesting and absolutely delicious food products.  And while most of us New Orleanians are quick to try just about anything put in front of us, people outside the area are not so eager.  Moving to North Georgia and entertaining new friends was a testament to that.  But although guarded, my new buddies were genuinely interested in and enamored by our food and food culture.  They just didn’t know how the heck to cook or eat half of it!  Through years of entertaining New Orleans style, we’ve enjoyed teaching our “Georgia Peaches” how [ ... ]

Twice Baked Potatoes

Twice Baked Potatoes need little introduction.  The basic recipe’s been around forever.  But it took my youngest daughter Blair to remind me that I don’t make this straightforward and deliciously simple side often enough. Blair is a foodie in her own right … has been ever since she took a stance against jarred baby food at the ripe old age of 9 months. She eats everything and anything and is quick to assess when too much time has passed since her last helping of a favorite dish (and there are many)!  Last week while digging in the pantry for an [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Chicken Nachos

My kids love the white cheese dip they serve at all the Mexican restaurants around here.  A couple of years ago, the son of one of those restaurant managers and my son ended up in the same class.  As a Mother’s Day gift, the students made a cookbook of favorite family recipes (that were collected with help from the dads).  When my son arrived home from school on that Friday before my special day, he came charging through the door waving the cookbook in his hand yelling, “I’ve got the recipe!  I’ve got the recipe!”  As luck would have it, [ ... ]

Roasted and Sautéed Beets

A few years back, we joined a Community Supported Agriculture program.  I thought it would be a cool way to eat healthier, support our local farming community and teach our kids where their food really comes from.  If you’re unfamiliar with them, CSAs connect farmers with consumers to share the risks and rewards of running a farm.  At the beginning of each growing season, members pay a set fee to a farmer in exchange for a weekly share of whatever they harvest. The fees help small farmers build working capital so they can earn a living while providing families [ ... ]

Finger Food Friday: Crawfish Jalapeño Poppers

The only thing left in our veggie garden is this crazy jalapeno plant.  Crazy because it’s still thriving even though it only reached about 12-inches in height and is forever tipping over from the weight of the mass quantities of spicy-delicious peppers it continues to produce.  We harvested so many jalapenos, in fact, that I’m struggling to use them up before they go bad!  Which is why I decided to make Crawfish Jalapeno Poppers today. With this recipe, I can knock out 24 or more (depending on their size).  That’ll leave me with a only handful.  Well, at least [ ... ]