Thursday, August 18, 2016

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When Cooking Becomes More Than Just A Task

Many people look at cooking as something so old fashioned and out dated, something no longer needed in today's fast paced - everything at your fingertip society. Wth TV dinners and microwavable everything at hand, after all who really needs cooking anyway... No one wants to stand in front of a hot stove for an hour cooking food from scratch, when you have many other options. How many people look at this blog or any other instructional cooking website and just pass it over as though it is nothing relevant...nothing worth learning, something nice to look at - but definitely not for me...

My friend, that is where you are so wrong. In this blog post, I am trying to bring you to reality. Cooking is related to many areas of your life. How many ladies for instance want to get married,  how many pray to marry prince charming and would love to start a family of their own and live that happily ever after. But wether you go to church or not; the truth of the matter is that unfortunately. You will NEVER get a blessing if you are not ready for it.

You want to get married, don't just hope and wish - that will get you no where. Get up - and do something about it. Practice what you will need, humble yourself and learn this new skill. Excel in everything you do, don't half do things, don't lazy around and sometimes do it, and sometimes don't... Your cooking needs to be Excellent.

How is cooking related to marriage? Marriage, is forever... Everyday for the rest of your life you and your family will need to eat. How can you as the woman of the house provide any kind of whipped together meal for those whom you love... No effort whatsoever. That shouldn't be okay, and maybe that is why you still haven't obtained your blessing, because something like that doesn't please God.

I'm a firm believer in, If you are going to do something - Do it all the way. Dive right in. Give it the absolute best that you have. Where it couldn't possibly be done any better by you.  If you aren't going to give it your best you minus well just not do it at all.

If you can't commit to giving your best in perfecting your cooking, then how can you be cut out for marriage and a family?

So yes, you want to be a wife? You want to have a family of your own? You want to be that guy that knocks your wife off her feet, by knowing your way around the kitchen. Then you are going to have to put in the effort, stand in front of the hot stove, sometimes for hours in order to come out with a masterpiece.

Only when cooking becomes to you more than just a task, when it becomes something important, something worth learning, something to excel in. That my friend, is when you are ready to take on a big responsibility like marriage.When you value the many resources you have at hand to learn how to cook and not keep the excuse of why you aren't a great cook, is when you are ready for prince charming.

Food for thought...

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Triple Chocolate Threat Cake

You know that food that is so bad for you, but you don't seem to care because it's just that good. This is that cake... Such a guilty pleasure.

Full of calories and nothing diet about it at all. But every bite is all so worthed. The perfect combination of soft crumbling cake, bite size chocolate pieces, crushed nuts giving it a nice crunch and a sticky-goey dulce de leche covering. Well worth your time to make.

Triple Chocolate Threat Cake
Servings: 10 servings
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 min
Source: Elsie Da Silva

1 cup butter
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 3/4 cups flour
3 tsp baking powder
1 cup milk
1/4 cup cocoa powder

1 Can condensed milk
1/2 cup Crushed Pecans
1/3 cup coconut
1/3 cup chocolate chips
chocolate syrup sauce (Can also be made by combining 1/2 cup cocoa powder and about 2- 3 tbsp butter in a small pot and cooking on medium low heat for about 5 min.)


Preheat your oven to 350F or 175C and start by making your cake

Grease a cake pan with a little butter and flour, then in a large bowl mix in your butter and sugar until smooth, add eggs and mix until smooth, add in flour and baking powder again mix and then add milk and mix until smooth. Lastly add in your cocoa powder and mix well.  Place mixture into your cake pan and cook in the oven for 45 min to 1 hour depending on type of cake pan used. For a bundt cake like the one pictured above leave in oven for 45 min. Generally for round cakes or cakes made in a pyrex it may vary from 55 min to 1 hour 10 min. Cake is ready when a toothpick or knife pokes the cake and it comes out dry.

While your cake is in the oven, Prepare your sticky topping by putting an unopened can on condensed milk into a pot of boiling water and leave boiling on medium high heat for about 1 hour, this is how you make dulce de leche caramel, very simple.  (If you own a pressure pot, it is much quicker if you put the can of condensed milk inside of a pressure pot and do the same thing...)  Once done, Be EXTREMELY careful when dealing with this HOT can. I suggest draining out the water and leaving the pot along with the can in cold running water for at least 3 - 4 minutes to ensure it cools off.

Open your can, once fully cooled of and frost your cake, if the dulce de leech is too thick a great trick is to add a little milk to soften it a bit.

After frosting the cake start mounting on your toppings. Drizzle your chocolate sauce lightly on top, Sprinkle on your crushed pecans, chocolate chips and coconut.

Cut, serve and enjoy.
Print Recipe
Excellent with a nice tea or coffee.

God Bless
From my kitchen to yours

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Quinoa (Great alternative to rice)


Quinoa - known as the super grain of the future is an excellent substitute to rice, For all the gluten free lovers, it is A naturally gluten free food. Now days you don't have to feel bloated everyday eating white rice, there are so many other healthier options on the market, things like couscous, bulgar wheat, wild rice, brown rice mix and quinoa which are all often even tastier than rice itself when prepared properly. In todays day and age, you only eat white rice and feel bloated if you really want to because there are plenty of really good options.

Here is a great alternative for you to try, Goes great with everything just as rice would. 

Servings: 4 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes

2 cup Quinoa
1/3 cup thinly diced olives
1 tomato diced
1/3 onion diced
1/4 cup diced parsley
salt, pepper to taste

Just as you would do with rice, since out your quinoa in a strainer and then place 3 cups of water, on Medium high heat boil that water adding a pinch of salt and olive oil to it. Once boiling add in your quinoa and reduce the heat to low, allow to cook for about 10 - 15 minutes or until your water is gone and the quinoa seeds are soft.

Set aside to cool, in a big bowl add in your cooled quinoa, and all of your diced ingredients (feel free to add to or take away from anything listed above. I've added other things to my quinoa before such as  sliced turkey, diced chicken cubes, other vegetable etc. you can do the same) Add in a pinch of your salt and pepper and mix it all in with a wooden spoon until all evenly mixed together.

Serve just as you would rice, great with fish, beef and chicken dishes.

God Bless
From my kitchen to yours

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Old Fashioned Bread Pudding

Bread pudding is a really quick and delicious snack or dessert that goes excellent with ice cream or whipped cream,

* Here is a good tip: Every time that I have bread that has gone stale, or bread ends. I always put them in a ziplock bag and throw them in the freezer. Then when I have enough bread ends I put them all together and make bread pudding. Thats a great way to make use of bread that you were going to throw away.

Old Fashioned Bread Pudding
Servings: 10 servings
Prep time: 15 min
Total time: 1 Hour 30 min
Source: Elise Jackson

1 loaf of bread
1 can condensed milk
3 cups milk
1/2 pack graham crackers
1/2 cup raisins (optional)
2 eggs
pics cinnamon


Preheat the oven to 350F,

In a large bowl mix together the condensed milk, milk, cinnamon  and eggs. Then in a large pyrex break bread into bite sized chunks and add raisins (optional),  Pour your milk mixture into the bread and let stand for 5 min until all the milk is absorbed into the bread.

Sprinkle graham crackers on top for a nice crunch and place in oven to cook for 45 min or until golden and dry to the touch. Let cool, cut and serve.

Serves great with vanilla ice cream
Print Recipe
From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Tips on setting a summery table

As we are now in the summer season here in the U.S. here is a great summery styled snack table. I found this online a little while ago and found it to be gorgeous. If you notice the items on the table are very simple. Just a cake frosted in chocolate and tiny finger foods. Tiny breads with an assortment of things on top such as cheese, tomato, cucumber, salmon, boiled egg etc. and in the far back fresh water with orange slices.

Take notice of how easily you can make something simple look extravagant by adding simple touches. Here they used 2 tier trays to hold the finger foods, a beautiful flower arrangement and cute butterfly ties to hold the napkins (which I've seen at the dollar store before, not expensive at all)

One trick which is used in this picture is the use of different levels to achieve a fuller, more fancy looking table and to create more space. If you have something elevated on a tray rather than flat on the table, this allows for you to then add something else underneath it onto the actual table.

Pay attention to the detail, they are not using plastic plates or cups, but instead summery colored plates and cups. Also instead of serving plain water, Oranges were cut up and added into the jar to create a hint of orange flavor and to look nicer.

Each hors d' oeuvre is formed and carefully put together. For instance lets look at the one with a boiled egg on top. To do this you could use a small cookie cutter or perhaps a bottle cap or something that would help you cut out the bread into a circular shape. Using sliced bread cut out that round shape. Boil an egg (for a smaller cuter looking egg, use quail eggs) lightly butter your bread and Cut the egg into a similar sized circle, gently place the egg on top of the bread and garnish with a piece of parsley.

God Bless

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Edible Arrangments fruit basket (made yourself)

Have you ever heard of Edible Arrangments? A very popular and creative basket made of fruits, a great alternative to giving a healthy gift to your loved ones instead of the same ol things such as flowers and a box of chocolate.

Though beautiful, popular and very fun to eat. Some don't get it due to its expensive prices. A fruit basket such as the one pictured above that can be made at home for about $10 - $20 at absolute most, this would cost you upward of $70 at Edible Arrangments.  More than triple the amount it would cost to make. Don't get me wrong, for those not willing to put in the work to make your own, Edible Arrangments is a sure place to get them, as they are the best in this field, their fruit baskets are spot on. But for those willing to put in just a little work and doing it yourself, it will save you lots of money and made with lots of love is often much better than just buying it in the store.

Take a look at how its done...

Edible Arrangments fruit basket (made yourself )
Servings: 2 servings
Prep time: 20 min
Total time: 45 min
Source: Elsie Da Silva

1 pack skewers
red grapes
8oz meltable milk chocolate or white chocolate
1/2 tsp butter
sprinkles, crushed graham crackers, crushed nuts etc.
(Feel free to swap any of these fruits for something else you like more)

As with Edible Arrangments, your fruit basket can be done in any size vase. Here we made it in a tall mug. Wash all of your fruit and set it aside to dry. Your fruit can be arranged a number of creative ways. On a skewer arrange all the fruit however you like. Mix and match  until you like what you see. Using your knife carve out shapes into your meatier fruits such as in this case the cantaloupe and pineapple.

As you notice in the picture above, some fruits are carved into a heart others into flowers, others into moon shaped pieces, circles etc. Go ahead and try, carve pieces into triangles, circles, squares, stars, hearts and whatever else you may want.

Once you've got your perfect cut pieces, put them on the skewers. Leaving for last your strawberries which will be dipped in chocolate.

In a small bowl pour out your sprinkles and into a small pot place your milk chocolate and butter, on low heat cook until all melted. With your strawberries on a skewer stick, dip the tip into the chocolate  and then into the sprinkles then set aside to cool and harden. Once hardened add it to your fruit basket.

To go an extra mile, add in cute things like the big purple butterfly in this basket (search your local dollar store for these cute little touches to the basket.) Wrap it in thick plastic and tie it with a bow to finish the entire look.

Remember this is a perishable item. Make sure to keep it refrigerated until you give it to the person as a gift.

From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Friday, July 15, 2016

Smooth Porridge

For a great breakfast or light dinner, try making porridge. You might remember porridge from the childhood story of Goldie locks and the 3 bears : - ) An age old recipe for such a hearty,smooth, filling and deliciously soft breakfast. Made in mere minutes. I can't get enough of it.

Servings: 2 servings
Prep time: 2 min
Total time: 10 min
Source: Elise Jackson

1/2 cup Oats
2 cups milk
2 tsp sugar
(optional - coconut, cinnamon, apples or whatever else you may want to add to the flavor)

In a blender put your oats and blend it until flaked.
In a pot add in your milk and put it on medium low heat, add in your flaked oats and sugar to taste and cook for about 4 minutes or until your porridge is noticeably thicker. Serve right away and enjoy.

From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Cold Cuts Platter

Take a look at this, I came across this picture just the other day and had to share it with you all. A very interesting way to place all of your cold cuts into one big tray and serve at fancy occasions. Very unique and undoubtably an eye catcher.

Try this at your next get together, quick and easy. A nice tip would be to alternate between cheese and something like ham or turkey slices, to have more variety.

God Bless

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

How to cook a whole chicken

Here in the U.S. one of our major holidays is thanksgiving. Where we enjoy a nice big turkey and all of the side dishes that go along with it. But funny enough, there are lots of people who don't like making turkey or even whole chicken due to the fact that it is such a big piece of meat and they are not quite sure how to clean and prepare it. 

I've had many people tell me that they don't cook whole chicken because they don't know how to. In this post, my aim is to help you have a better understanding of how to cook and clean whole chicken, the same goes for making big birds such as turkey.

For the easiest and best cooking method, First cut out the spine of the chicken to allow for it to lay flat in the pyrex whilst cooking. Turn to the back and with a pair of kitchen scissors cut along both sides of the chicken spine, the entire piece will be completely detached and you can throw it away. This will also facilitate with cleaning the insides of the chicken itself.

Once that is done, follow the normal procedure of cleaning chicken Here is a great example of how to properly clean your chicken. Next season the meat by first drizzling olive oil and then the seasonings of your chicken. Such as salt, pepper, garlic powder, lawrys all purpose seasoning etc. Rub it all in well. Here are more details on how to properly season

Preheat the oven to 425F or 210C. Place the chicken into a big enough pyrex drizzled with a little olive oil just for the chicken to not get stuck to the bottom.

Place it in the oven for about 1 hour to 1 hour 30 min. or until fully cooked all the way through and nicely browned.

Once cooked, set aside and allow to cool before cutting it into pieces. Serves well for cutting into whole leg quarters, wings, breast or serving as an entire half a chicken.

From my kitchen to yours

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Making A Pasta Dish

Are you a pasta person? Like anything as long as its pasta?

I love pasta, though its not one of the worlds healthiest food, it is such an enjoyable food to eat. Here I made a quick pasta dish. You can do the same at home and throw together what you have into a a pot and mix it in with your pasta and there you go. In mere minutes you have an enjoyably delicious meal.

Follow instructions below for Making the ideal pasta dish

Pasta Dish
Servings 4
Prep time: 30 minutes
Total time: 1 hour
Source: Elise Jackson

1lb meat (can be anything from bacon, ground meat, sausage, chicken, seafood, beef, pork)
2-3 cups Green vegetable
1 box Your choice pasta
Your choice sauce as listed below
seasonings: salt, pepper, garlic powder

Ingredients for Basic Sauces:
White wine sauce - 2 cup heavy cream and 1/3 white wine
White cheese sauce - 2 cup heavy cream and 1/4 cup cheddar cheese
Pink sauce - 1 1/2 cup Heavy cream and 1/2 cup tomato sauce
Red wine sauce - 2 cup tomato sauce and 1/4 cup white wine
red sauce - 2 cup tomato sauce

Lets get started, now that you have your meat, your green vegetable and your pasta. Start off by following the instruction on the back of your pasta and boil for the allotted amount of time instructed. Drain and set aside to cool.

Cut your meat into bite sized cubes, Take a big pot and adding a little oil, cook your meat for a few minutes on medium high heat until cooked all the way through and no longer raw. Choose which sauce you want and Add in your sauce ingredients to the pot ( feel free to add or take away from the suggested amounts of sauce to use.) Cook on medium high heat for 10 minutes, mixing once in a while to not stick to pot and get burned.

Lower heat to medium low, add in your seasonings and green vegetables and cook for another 15 minutes or until sauce slightly thickens.

To Serve neatly try plating the pasta first and then using a big spoon, scoop the meat and vegetable sauce on top in the center of your pasta. Mixing the pasta and sauce together into a big bowl before plating at times tends to come out a bit dry and not very saucy.

Note: Pictured above I made a " Crawfish Fettucini Alfredo" For my meat I used crawfish, my green vegetable was broccoli and my sauce was the white cheese sauce.

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From my kitchen to yours

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Beat the summer heat with refreshing 'Watermelon juice'

The summer is finally here, and the heat is not joking. I am in Louisiana, USA and yesterdays heat was a strong 92F and the summer has just began : - ) In days like this we need to discover smart ways to stay cool, refreshed and hydrated. Here is one of the ideas I came up with. Besides your very necessary intake of 8 cups of water a day (especially in the summer heat) I have started making big containers of fresh watermelon juice.

Did you know that one of the many watermelon qualities is that it is made up of 92% water...  besides all of the other nutritional facts. Watermelon is listed as one of the healthiest fruits on earth. Only consisting of 6% sugar.

Having such a high percentage of water is one of the main reasons why it keeps you so refreshed. Beat the summer heat by eating lots of watermelon  this summer. Follow the instructions below to make watermelon juice. Refrigerate it for a few hours and every time that you are overheating go ahead and pour yourself a tall glass of this cold, fresh watermelon juice and see how instantly refreshed you become.

Fresh Watermelon Juice
Servings 20
Prep time: 7 min
Total time: 10 min
Source: Elise Jackson

A whole Watermelon

Simply take your whole watermelon and cut it into large chunks at a time, throw it into your blender seeds and all, blend for a few minutes until smooth. Then take a strainer and strain out the blended juice into a big bottle or jar. This straining process will strain out the pulp and seeds; allowing for a fresher pulp free juice. (if you are having a hard time straining, use a wooden spoon and help by moving it in a circular motion as the juice goes through the strainer, sometimes it goes slow due to the pulp getting stuck in the wholes. Using the spoon ensures that you get out all the juice and that very few pulp is left over in the end. Don't loose juice, make sure that you get it all out of the strainer) Repeat the process until you have done the entire watermelon.

Here is an example of how to store the juice( a closed glass jar) as you can see, my husband and I are almost halfway through the bottle : - ) 

Refrigerate for a few hours and drink when needed.

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From my kitchen to yours

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Mini pudim de leite

Here is an idea for making pudim de leite. Instead of making the entire traditional bundt pan size, you can make them into individual small mini pudim's. Use cupcake trays and follow the recipe below. Easy, quick and cute.


Here is the recipe. Follow this, just place them into cupcake trays instead of the bundt pan and the cooking time will be 30 minutes rather than the time posted for the bigger pudim  pudim de leite recipe

For those who are more health conscious, Follow the same guidelines listed above, and do this pudim de leite which is fat free style with that same great taste.   fat free pudim de leite recipe

From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Louisiana Gumbo Recipe

Being new to Louisiana, residing in New Orleans. I've come to learn that their food is creatively delicious. Their Creole & Cajun styled food is full of flavor and completely different than the traditional American foods that I am used to.

Gumbo is one of the traditional New Orleans food. True soul food at its best. It consists of a pot full of meats. A very heavy meal to keep the family stuffed. Normally there are a variety of meats in the one big pot. The meats for the gumbo vary depending on which types of meats you prefer. Normally there is seafood, chicken and sausage for the best gumbo's. This is served alongside rice.

After trying Gumbo a few times, I decided to give it a try. So I made a Crawfish (Very common in Louisiana, similar to lobster and shrimp, in my opinion much tastier than both), Crab, Turkey neck, Chicken and Sausage Gumbo.

Now this recipe would be more for the advanced cooks, as it takes a LONG TIME to make. Though it isn't complicated to do at all. It requires lots of patience with slow cooking over a medium fire. But no doubt, well worth the wait.

Louisiana Gumbo
Servings: 8 - 10
Prep time: 45 min
Total time: 7 hours
Source: Elise Jackson

2 tbsp olive oil
1 lb crawfish
1 lb fresh crabmeat
1 lb chicken breast diced into big chunks
1 lb turkey neck
1 long sausage link cut into thick slices
seasonings: (Tony Cacheres creole seasoning, Tony Cacheres gumbo base, lawrys, salt, black pepper, garlic powder)

1 cup butter
1 cup flour


In a big pot put in your olive oil and add in all of your turkey neck, sausage and chicken, on medium high heat cook well for a few minutes until nicely browned. Once completely cooked and browned, add in your seasonings to the meat sprinkle in salt, lawrys, black pepper, garlic powder. Mix in until all well incorporated into the meats. Now fill your pot with water all the way till the top.

Leave on fire on medium high heat until the water starts to boil rapidly. Add in your creole seasoning and your gumbo base to the water and mix in with a wooden spoon. return to boil. Once it returns to a boil, lower your heat to medium low and leave it simmering for 3 hours mixing every once in a while.

While it simmers make your roux. A roux is an even amount of fat and flour. It can be done with lard, butter or oil. Whatever amount of fat you use, you would need to use that same measurement of flour. Roux is made to thicken any type of sauce. Excellent form of making anything thicker. Whether it be a white sauce, wine sauce, tomato sauce or soups and gumbo. Here I used 1 cup of butter so I also had to use 1 cup of flour.

There are different stages when it comes to making the perfect roux. You simply put in your butter into the pot, let it melt and immediately add in your flour and continue mixing every few seconds to not allow to burn on medium low heat. For this specific gumbo recipe you will let it cook for about 45 minutes, mixing every few seconds, until it becomes this dark brown color and consistency. This will allow our sauce for the gumbo to not lighten and change colors but to remain dark and gumbo like.

The different stages to making Roux.

~ White stage -( excellent for white and white wine sauces) cook for about 10 minutes
~ Peanut butter stage -( excellent for your average soups and red sauces, will become light brown and resemble the color of peanut butter.) cook for about 20 - 25 minutes
~ Dark brown stage -( excellent for dark sauces and things such as the gumbo we are making, helps keep the sauce a dark color, as adding white roux to an already dark sauce will lighten the color. To keep that rich dark color you need a dark brown roux) cook for about 45 min.
~ stone hard stage - (stays dark brown in color but no longer becomes smooth and sauce like but instead very hard. This will thicken any sauce almost immediately.)  cook a little longer than 45 min and you will notice a change in texture

After making your roux, set it aside

After your 3 hours of cooking the gumbo, add in your seafood, in my case the crawfish and crabmeat, mix in well and continue cooking for 1 more hour on medium low heat. Now add in your roux which will allow your sauce to noticeably thicken, be careful not to burn, leave on stove for another 1 hour 30 min to 2 hours mixing every once in a while. But as your sauce is thickening be carful for it not to burn.

Once your gumbo is a slightly thick texture and your meats are soft and falling apart, your gumbo is full of flavor and good enough to eat.

Serve with white rice, here is a good recipe

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From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Taco Bell tacos

Last night my husband and I enjoyed tacos. Something that is very simple to make and very fun to create. Done in mere minutes and an enjoyable light snack.

Servings 4
Prep time: 10 min
Total time: 12 min


4 Hard or Soft Shell Tacos
1 lb Ground beef
1/2 cup Tomato sauce 
1/2 Diced onion, tomato, carrot
1/2  lettuce Thinly sliced 
Shredded cheese
Optional: sour cream
Optional: Bbq sauce
Seasonings: salt, pepper, onion powder, taco seasoning


Take your ground meat and cook it in a little bit of olive oil, until nicely browned. To make the original hard shell taco bell tacos, you will season the meat with your taco seasoning mix, salt, pepper, onion powder etc. ( if you don't have taco seasoning, substitute it for something like chilli powder, or other seasonings) once your meat is the way you like it, seasoning wize, you can either leave it dry for the original taco bell way or add in your tomato sauce for a more juicy taco and mix in well, cook on low heat for another 5 min. Then set aside to cool.

On a plate, seperate each of you taco toppings just as I did pictured above to facilitate your taco construction : - ) this is also a fun way to set it up when serving guests or for the kids. It gives everyone the ability to build the taco the way they want.

The Taco Bell styled taco is built 2 ways. On you hard shell taco put in your ground meat and on top of that add a lot of lettuce, then sprinkle on your tomato, onion and last shredded cheese. Another way to do it you want a creamy center: add a tsp of sour cream directly on top of the meat before adding in the lettuce.

Now for my own soft shell taco recipe, it tastes absolutely amazing and would have never known until I tried it. Honestly, I liked this even better than the original Taco Bell recipe. Absolutely delicious.

Bbq Soft Shell Taco
Servings 4
Prep time: 10 min
Total time: 12 min
Source: Elise Jackson


1 lb ground meat
4 Soft shell tacos
Bbq sauce


Cook your ground meat until golden, add in bbq sauce and cook on low for 5 min, set aside to cool. Take your soft shell tacos and put them in a frying pan just to warm up and soften it. Warm for a few seconds then flip over to the other side and warm a few more seconds.

Put your taco together by adding the bbq meat, optional you can add in the lettuce, tomato, onion and cheese.

Seriously, very delicious...

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From my kitchen to yours

Monday, May 16, 2016

Chicken and Tuna kebabs

Like kebabs? Have that outdoor kebab on a grill experience done straight in your oven...
Delicious, fun to eat and great to be served in parties or even as a snack, all your meat and vegetables in one stick.

On the kebab you have your meal serving of meat and vegetables, all you need to add is your starch. Things like rice, mashed potatoes or pasta go well as a side. When making kebabs, there is no specific right or wrong way to make it, nor is there a right or wrong ingredient to add. What I typically do, is I search for all of my favorite vegetables and I add it to the skewer.

I've seen many people add things like onion, pepper, tomato etc. But if you are not the type of person to eat a whole half an onion. Don't add it to your kebab. It will just be taking up space and once roasted you won't eat it. Put things on the skewer that you would actually eat and enjoy.

(Makes 12 Kebabs)

12 Skewer sticks
4 chicken breasts (seasoned and diced into large chunks)
6 Tuna Steaks (optional)
3 Zucchini
10 Carrots
24 broccoli stems
12 Brussel Sprouts
12 mushrooms
1/2 cup melted butter
2 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
seasoning: Rock salt, salt, pepper, garlic powder, crushed garlic, parsley

Preheat oven to 400 F or 200 C.

On the skewer, slide in your raw chicken, which will take longer to cook, set it across a pyrex short wise, so that the sticks rest on top of the top of the pyrex. Place in the oven to cook for 20 minutes.

While in oven, work on washing and chopping your vegetables into large, thick chunks. Once the carrots are cut, put them in boiling water for about 5 minutes just until slightly softened, to facilitate the sliding of the carrots onto the skewer stick.(be careful not to overcook or they will break easily).

Remove skewers from oven and allow to cool. Removing the chicken pieces off of the sticks, softly, to not break. Fill in the skewer sticks however you want, alternating between the meats and the vegetables(If you will also be using Tuna, you can add the tuna onto the sticks now as you add in the vegetables, tuna cooks quickly) . Until they are full. Repeat the same pattern for all of your sticks.

Separately in a small bowl mix in your melted butter, salt, pepper, garlic powder, crushed garlic,parmesan cheese and parsley. Brush this butter mixture onto both sides of your skewers,being careful to get some of that butter on everything. (I  sometimes find it better, to use a spoon and drizzle it on the skewers one at a time, choose which method works best for you)

Place in the oven, for 15 more minutes, then turn each stick over to cook the other side. Cook for an additional 5 - 7 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle some rocks salt on top.

Serve warm with rice or the starch of your choice.

Tip: Kebabs are also great with meats such as beef and shrimp.

Print Recipe

From my kitchen to yours

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Brioche French toast for 2

Woke up earlier this morning and made a yummy breakfast for me and my sweetheart. Delicious Brioche bread french toast. Its really simple to make, done in minutes and really filling.We ate this huge breakfast and didn't feel like eating until late afternoon. We were stuffed and more importantly, left the breakfast table with a smile. A really delicious breakfast choice. Try it for your Sunday morning Brunch.

6 Thick sliced bread (I used Brioche bread)
3 egg
1/2 milk
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Set your bread aside, In a large bowl mix in all of your ingredients.

Turn your fire onto medium low heat, if your frying pan is not teflon and easily sticks spray a little pam.

Dip your breads on both sides, into the egg mixture. Then immediately put it in the frying pan and cook for about 2 minutes or until golden brown, then flip over and cook the same way on the other side.

That simple, your done

French toast goes well with things such as syrup, also great with fresh fruits and jam or whipped cream

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From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Friday, May 13, 2016

Honey Glazed Sticky Chicken

One of the simplest ways to make your chicken, its actually very tasty. For those of you who like chinese food or things like sweet and sour chicken, chicken teriyaki, bbq chicken, sesame chicken, or general tso's chicken. Here is a quick alternative and an amazing taste similar to all of the listed foods above.

Goes along great with just plain white rice or even creamy mashed potatoes. Give it a try.

Honey glazed sticky chicken.

3 chicken breasts
3 tbsp honey
1/4 cup brown sugar
4 tbsp water

Dice your chicken breast into nice sized chunks, clean it by washing it in vinegar and water. Once thoroughly washed put your chicken in a big pan with a little bit of oil and cook on medium high heat until nicely browned. Once it is nice and a dark brown color add in your brown sugar and water, mix well until all dissolved and lower the heat to medium low, add in your honey and mix well. It will all begin to look like a light brown color.

Lower your heat to low and allow to look for about 10 minutes, the sauce will get thicker and become a darker brown color. Once the sauce is nicely thickened and your chicken is fully cooked. Your done.

Done in minutes and very delicious with white rice. Here is a great white rice recipe to try with it.

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From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Friday, May 6, 2016

Fruit and Vegetable Blast Smoothie

According to the food pyramid, health experts and nutritionists. Daily we need to intake 5 fruits or vegetable and drink our 8 cups of water. But not many people do that. This is important because it helps our body to get all the nutrients and good for us, vitamins that it needs in order to continue having energy to live a productive life.

Sometimes we don't intake all of those fruits and vegetables due to not liking them , maybe due to lack of time to stop and pick up at least 5 fruits and vegetable pieces to eat throughout the day, maybe because you are not used to adding vegetables to your lunch and dinner meals etc. Even if you do eat your daily portions worth, you could always eat more, it won't hurt.

Drink health, energy and an immune system boost with this fresh fruit and vegetable smoothie made from scratch. You can add in your 5 fruits and vegetables into that one smoothie and have your daily portion all in one big cup. So fresh it needs to be drunk immediately after making.  Similar to the naked juice drinks ,drink to your health and give your body the strength it needs by giving it the stuff it needs. Made in minutes.

Here is how:

3 - 4 fruits of your choice
1 - 2 vegetables of your choice
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup pure fruit juice

Here I have kale, apple, honey dew melon, peach and strawberry. Add in 1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup fresh fruit juice and blend on high for about 3 minutes. Once smooth pour it in your cup and your good to go.

Tip: for a more refreshing drink add in a few ice cubes or freeze your fruit so that when its blended it will be much colder and have a slight ice crunch to it. Drink immediately

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From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Thursday, May 5, 2016

The perfect oven roasted chicken

Here is how to make the perfect oven roasted chicken drumsticks, nicely golden with a crisp crunch on the outside and a tender center. Almost feels like your cheating and eating fried chicken. But with no guilt at all, no extra calories from all that fatty batter and no frying necessary at all. Its all done in the oven. Quick to make (the oven does all the work)

Goes great along with a nice salad or green vegetable and rice. I tripled  up on my starches (Not recommended unless you need to gain weight) as pictured above. But I don't regret it one bit. It was super delicious. Here I have my chicken with white rice, a quinoa and kale sauté and coconut oil covered sweet potato and casava. This was good, I mean REALLY good. Try it for yourself and see.

How its done: All you need is this:
8 drumstick
A drizzle of canola or vegetable oil
Seasoning: salt, lawrys all purpose seasoning, black pepper, onion powder

First thing is first, as I posted a few years ago. It is really important to always thoroughly clean your chicken for many reasons, to remove the thick layer of slim, and any excess blood or dirtiness on the surface. I normally always remove the skin from any chicken I am making. Though it is your own preference. Some people like cooking with the skin on. I like removing it, as I feel it is a better clean and most importantly because there is a lot of fat in the skin alone. If you are watching your cholesterol or are trying to loose weight or just live a healthy lifestyle. That is extremely important to do. Here is how you can properly clean your chicken.

Once your chicken is cleaned, set your oven to 400F or aproximetly 200C. While it preheats start seasoning your chicken. Lightly drizzle your oil (oil helps the seasonings to stick and creates that nice golden crisp when in the oven.) Now a little at a time season. Be careful not to over season. Rub it all in well with your hands. Get a pyrex and lightly oil the bottom before laying your drumsticks on. Be sure to lay the drumstick flat onto the pyrex. Do not layer any on top of each other (this will prevent the browning)

Place it in the oven for about 30 minutes or until you see it is fully cooked and beginning to brown. Turn the chicken over and allow to cook for another 15 minutes on the other side or until you notice it is browned. Thats all, your chicken is ready to serve, eat and enjoy.

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From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Monday, April 25, 2016

How to make a Tuna Casserole

Looking for something simple and cost efficient to make? Try this.
All you need is a few ingredients, thrown together and tossed in the oven for a few minutes. Your quick and easy hot meal awaits. Great for those days that you are in a rush.
Kids love this, and mom can get back to doing whatever she has to do without being in the kitchen for long making lunch or dinner.

1 bag egg noodles
4 cans tuna
1/2 onion diced
1 can cream of mushroom soup
Your choice of green vegetable ( I used peas. Other options are spinach, broccoli, zucchini etc)
shredded cheddar or mozzarella cheese
Optional: Crushed Ritz Crackers

Boil your egg noodles for the amount of time required on the packet. Drain the water and set it aside.

Preheat oven to 350F. In a big bowl mix together with a wooden spoon the tuna, onion, pasta, vegetable and cream of mushroom soup. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. Lay it out on a pyrex and sprinkle cheese on top. Optional - What I like to do, to add a slight crunch is crush a few ritz crackers on top

Place in oven for about 10 - 15 minutes or until the cheese on top is nicely melted.

Your done, the entire meal is in that one pyrex. You have your vegetables, your starch and the meat. Can also be done with shredded chicken or shredded beef.

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From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Thursday, April 21, 2016

How to dry your lettuce

Such a useful item to have in every kitchen. This aids in helping you to dry lettuce when making salads. Making them come out dry and still crisp and not that mushy wet feel. I love it. Since discovering this, nothing else is the same. The old fashioned using paper towels to pat dry or shaking it in a big strainer doesn't compare to how using this makes it come out. Look for it next time you go to your local stores kitchen department. Very helpful.

From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Banana nut muffin

Today for snack, I tried this amazing banana nut bread recipe to make my muffins from scratch and they were absolutely amazing and easier than I thought it would be. Taste better than the store bought version and eating only one is a hard mind game. Very delicious. Try it.

What I did differently is I used almond and macadamia nuts, I crushed them and added it to the mixture. This recipe makes 6 huge muffins or 12 regular sized muffins.
 Check out the recipe I used

God Bless

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Low carb/ low calorie shepherds pie

Here is an option for those who want to minimize their carbohydrate  intake, for those who are vegetarian and for those who just want to try something new. Even if your filling is ground beef or something else altogether. Just the fact of making the shepherds pie with cauliflower rather than potatoes is already a plus. With less than half the calories of the original. This almost starch free shepherds pie is enjoyable both to the mouth and to your conscious.

In this Cauliflower based shepherds pie, I chose to make it vegetarian. I've made it more than once and on a few occasions I made the filling with ground beef and a red sauce which was amazing. In this version however I simply used various vegetables such as mushrooms, onions, peppers, tofu and a red sauce.

1 whole cauliflower
1 tbsp butter
pinch salt and pepper

Boil your cauliflower in a big pot with just a little water, allow to cook on high for about 15 - 20 minutes or until your cauliflower is so soft that a fork pokes into it easily. Once is it soft to the touch, drain the excess water and then mash it all up with a wooden spoon (If you want it to be very smooth and extra creamy use a handheld mixer instead) add in your butter, salt and pepper and mix well.

There you have your base.

Vegetarian filling
5 mushrooms
1/2 onion
1/2 pepper
1/2 square of tofu
8oz tomato sauce
4 oz water

For the filling I used in the picture above. I diced up all of my vegetables and sautéed in a pan on medium high heat for about 3 minutes, season with a little lawrys and 1 tsp sugar (Whenever using tomato sauce this is the ultimate trick. Tomato sauce is usually a bit on the acidic side. Adding a little sugar cuts the acidity and also adds that touch of sweetness which becomes amazing when combined together with all the other flavors of your sauce) add in tomato sauce and water and lower heat to low and allow to simmer for about 10 min.

If you want to use a regular ground beef filling which is my personal favorite. Use the same method stated above remove tofu and add in ground beef. Here is how you would do it.

Ground Beef filling
1 packet of ground beef
5 mushrooms
1/2 onion
1/2 pepper
12 oz tomato sauce
6 oz water
seasonings: pinch of lawrys, salt, pepper and garlic powder

Put a little olive oil in a big pot and on medium high heat cook your ground beef until nicely browned (about 15 minutes) season with a little Lawrys, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Dice up all of the vegetables and add in pan. continue cooking on medium high heat for about 3 minutes, (Whenever using tomato sauce this is the ultimate trick. Tomato sauce is usually a bit on the acidic side. Adding a little sugar cuts the acidity and also adds that touch of sweetness which becomes amazing when combined together with all the other flavors of your sauce) add in tomato sauce, water and 1 tbsp sugar and lower heat to low and allow to simmer for about 15 min.

Your filling is done. Now layer it onto a pyrex. Start by preheating your oven to 375F or 180C

In a small pyrex put your cauliflower base, then add on top of that your filling and then lastly cover the filling with your cauliflower base again. Place in the oven and bake for about 15 minutes just to get all those flavors cooked in together.

Tip: For an added touch you can sprinkle some shredded cheese on top before placing it in the oven.

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From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Friday, April 8, 2016

Tofu bites

Tofu is an excellent source of amino acids, iron, calcium and other great nutrients. A great alternative to meat for vegetarians and those who want to eat light. Depending on how its cooked it can taste a lot like chicken.Take a look at this site for more info on all the health benefits of this soya product.

You can eat it just as it is on a salad. One way I like to make it is fried in a little bit of olive oil and seasoned with a touch of sea salt, crushed red peppers and parsley. Tastes really good on salads, as a sandwich with a slice of cheese or just to eat on its own. Here, I fried it and served with a bit of sweet and sour sauce as a healthy and quick finger food.

Try something new, next time you are in the grocery store, pass by the fresh produce isle and buy tofu, give it a try. Its actually better than you would think it to be.

From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Thursday, April 7, 2016

How to cook with Zucchini

Today I made whipped mashed potatoes with a zucchini gravy and pan fried chicken breast cooked in lemon juice with caramelized onion slices on top. It was delicious, healthy and had your well balanced plate put in order. Every plate should have 1 serving of starch, 1 serving of your green veggie and 1 serving of your meat. Here on my husbands health and fitness blog you can learn more about creating the perfect balanced plate.

Creating your vegetable into a sauce is an excellent way of getting more vegetables in fewer bites. For instance. My husband is a enthusiast, but one of the few vegetables he dislikes is zucchini. So what I did here was I made the zucchini into a gravy to eat along with the mashed potatoes. He ate it and didn't even notice that it was zucchini. I told him afterwards but he didn't mind because it didn't have that texture and taste of a zucchini that he dislikes. This is perfect for eliminating those unnecessary extra calories associated with gravy. Make your own  homemade vegetable gravy.

I also made the zucchini into a similar sauce and used it inside of a shepherds pie instead of using a tomato sauce of a white sauce. There is your extra serving of vegetable right there with a great taste that doesn't compromise the taste of the dish.

Zucchini Gravy

4 Zucchini
Pinch of salt

How its done:
Whether it be for zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower. Whatever vegetable you choose to use. Simply cut it up and throw it in a pot with very little water on the bottom, cover the veggies a little less than half way in water, sprinkle a little salt on top and boil on medium high heat for about 20 minutes or until your vegetables are very soft. Set aside and allow to cool for about 10 minutes. Throw your vegetable and the little bit of water remaining in the pot into a blender and blend well until smooth, if it needs too be a bit thinner add a little more water. There you have your gravy. For a flavored gravy, use a bit of chicken stock or beef stock instead of water.

For a sauce you follow the same steps, but may require a bit more water. After blending you can return the mixture to the pot and cook for an additional 5 minutes adding chopped onions, pepper, parsley etc.

Here is another great zucchini recipe. Stuffed Zucchini

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From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Best cupcakes you will ever try (Royal Red Velvet Cupcakes)

There are cupcakes and then there are CUPCAKES...Without exaggeration, these are some of the best cupcakes I have ever tasted.  I had to ask them for permission to post their cupcakes on my blog. They are that good. Cant stop thinking about it.

Each cupcake carefully hand made by Seansay and her husband Alan; with so many fun flavors to choose  from with names like 'peanut butter perfection' or '24 carrot gold'.  I have yet to try every flavor but My favorites are of course their famous 'Red Velvet' and their 'Salted Caramel Chocolate Almond Velvet'.

If you are in the California area, you definitely need to try these cupcakes. Here is the website: You can order online. Check it out. Make sure you view their cupcake menu on the left hand side of the page to see all the flavors and their yummy looking pictures

If you are far from California like me, try giving them a call and see if you can get it delivered to where you are. I think depending on the distance it can be done.

Enjoy every bite : - )

From my kitchen to yours

Friday, April 1, 2016

How do I make a hearty soup?

When it comes to making a hearty soup. The greener the better. A great soup, is excellent for those cold rainy days. A day when you don't feel like cooking at all or for the day that you want to eat light and healthy. Here is a soup that I make often in my house. I've made it before with just veggies, with chicken and here I've made it with meatloaf. A good source of all your vegetables in one big bowl. Great for the heart indeed.

To make it, all you do is throw all of your favorite things in a big pot, add water and your good to go   : - ) It is really that simple. Choose to have it chunky style (just as is) or smooth style (blended and creamed)

1 pack of Collard greens or Kale
1/2 bag  lentils or mixed beans for soups
2 sweet potatoes (cut into big cubes)
4 regular potatoes (cut into big cubes)
vegetables of your choice: broccoli, zucchini, peas, cauliflower, corn, cassava cabbage etc.
Seasonings: Salt, Pepper, Lawrys
Meat of your choice: (Above I made meatloaf and added it to the soup but can be any meat. Beef, chicken or anything else.)

Rinse your  beans well then place it in the biggest pot that you have at home. Add water until the pot is almost filled. Bring to a boil for about 1 hour or until your beans are soft.  While that is boiling, take  all of your vegetables; rinse it well and cut it up into small chunks. Throw it into the pot and continue cooking for another 30 minutes. Add in your seasonings to taste. Take your cooked meat and add it to the pot, bring the fire down to a medium - low and simmer for 10 minutes. Here is the meatloaf that I added to my soup.

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Go ahead and enjoy, your hearty soup
From my kitchen to yours
God Bless

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Strawberry Shortcake (ready in minutes)

Here is a dessert that you can do in less than 5 minutes. Not very fattening at all. It can be done 2 ways. Tastes amazing and has that buttery soft flavor when you use pound cake but for those who are health conscious and want a guilt free dessert. It tastes equally as delicious with half the calories and a nice soft spongy feel with angel food cake.

1st step is to choose which cake you want to use.

Go head first and indulge - Pound Cake
Health conscious and half the calories - Angel food cake

In the picture above I used Angel food cake, I've done it with both before and to be honest both of them taste equally as good to me. Try it for y ourself and see which one you prefer.

To go even quicker when making this dessert, I usually buy the cake already made. But if you want to make the cake yourself from scratch here is an angel food cake recipe and here is a pound cake recipe.

It all depends on how many people you are serving, here is how its done.

2 slices of Angel food cake or Pound Cake (per person)
2 strawberries (per person)
Whipped cream spray
Jar strawberry jam

Simply plate your 2 slices of cake, then spread a good amount of your strawberry jam on top of the cake (the more the better). Slice up your strawberries and throw them on top of the jam spread and then freely spray your whipped cream on top of it all. Your done, ready in less than 5 minutes, a quick and delicious on the go dessert. Great for a nice picnic, kids party or just a grab and go light dessert.

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From my kitchen to yours

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