Sunday, September 9, 2018

Weekly Favorites 09/02/18 to 09/08/18

Time for another batch of Weekly Favorites! This week, there was no theme to follow, just whatever I found that was interesting. That's how I cook sometimes. Just go to the market without a plan and piece together a menu based off of what they have available!

Pommes Anna: French Melted Potatoes - via Sweet Paul

I've long a been a fan of Sweet Paul. He comes up with some pretty cool stuff! A classic potatoes au gratin has always a favorite comfort food dish of mine. Pommes Anna takes it to a whole new level!

Peaches and Cream Hand Pies - via Garden & Gun

I've discussed my love pastries and other baked goods in the past. These are portable, which of course, doubles their appeal! If you haven't checked out Garden & Gun before, they are such a great resource for southern comfort!

Herb Butter Salmon and Asparagus Foil Packs - Creme de la Crumb

I've eaten a few really good fish dishes lately, mostly in sandwich form. A few weeks ago in Seattle, I ate a really good Salmon Sandwich. Since then, I've had salmon on the brain! This easy salmon dish could really satisfy a craving!

How to Grow an Indoor Herb Garden - via Gardening Channel

For about a year now, I've had a spot set aside for a vegetable garden in the backyard. The spot is boxed in, ready for a raised garden to go in, but the grass is about two feet tall now. I still have plans to make a garden, someday. So, maybe an indoor herb garden is more my speed at this point.

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Simple Shrimp Scampi

I love how simple this recipe is. It has just a few ingredients, but still has big flavor! The lemon, butter, and shrimp are perfect together!

The Recipe:

Simple Shrimp Scampi
Simple Shrimp Scampi
  • 1/2 Pound Shrimp - Peeled and Deveined
  • 1/2 Cup Butter
  • 1/2 Dry White Wine
  • Juice of 1 Lemon
  • 1 Shallot - Minced
  • 3 Garlic Cloves - Minced 
  • 3 Scallions - Chopped
  • Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Linguini
  • Fresh Parsley

In a heavy bottom skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Sauté the garlic and shallots. Season with salt and pepper. Add some crushed red pepper flakes if desired. Add in the white wine and lemon juice. I prefer a dry white wine, like a sauvignon Blanc. 

Cook the shrimp until on both sides. The shrimp will cook fast, so just a few minutes per side. When the shrimp are almost done, add in the scallions and cook just long enough to heat. You don't want them to over cook.

Serve over linguine and garnish with the fresh parsley. If you're feeling up for an adventure, this is great with fresh pasta! This pairs really well with some Cheesy Garlic Bread!

Happy eating!

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Weekly Favorites 08/26/18 to 09/1/18

Well friends, this week the Weekly Favorites post is on time! I hate falling behind in my posts, but the good news, you're getting three weeks of favorites in one weekend! I'm also hoping to get some new recipes posted soon!

Prawn in Mustard Poppy Seed Sauce - via Twinkling Tina Cooks

Like a dog to a squirrel, I'm always drawn to prawns. Scrolling through Twitter, I had to stop and scroll back, because, well, I saw prawns! This prawns with a mustard sauce recipe looks amazing!

Raspberry Streusel Muffins - via Watch Jenn Bake

Have I told you how much I love pastries, specifically breakfast pastries? These raspberry streusel muffins made me do a double take! They sound like the perfect weekend morning pastry!

Go Go Goan Chicken Curry - via Hello Fresh

I'm always a fan of curry, especially with Chicken, and tomato based curry is right up my alley! Throw some naan bread in, and this would make a great night at home!

Savory and Refreshing Cucumber and Boiled Egg Toast - via Cooking with Anadi

I'll admit that I've jumped on the avocado toast bandwagon. Not that there's anything wrong with that! I've long felt that there could be more to it. What else could be layered on toast to give new flavor and texture profiles? I love cucumber on deli sandwiches, so why not mix it up with some eggs on toast?

Saturday, September 1, 2018

Weekly Favorites 08/19/18 to 08/25/18

Well I'm late again, no surprise there at this point! This post is this week's Weekly Favorites post, just a week late. At this point, you're probably think, "Does this guy write anything besides the weekly favorites?" In fact I do, and I'm working on a few new posts!

Vermicelli di Positano - via The Pasta Project

Pasta, my old friend! I've made a few pasta dishes like this and on a rainy or cold day, they can really hit the spot! There is just something about marinated tomatoes and veggies that is so good!

Pesto - via Pesto Champion

I love pesto. I also love history. This very brief history of pesto caught my attention and I had to shared. Now I have a question. Pine nuts or no pine nuts in your pesto?

Maseladar Chana dal Tadka or Spiced Yellow Split Peas with Ghee - via Cooking with Anadi

My wife and I cook fair amount of curry, usually chicken or shrimp. Our kids, surprisingly, love rice. I like to see variations on curry, and I've never really done one with a yellow curry. This one looks like one I am going to have to try out!

Weekly Favorites 08/12/18 to 08/18/18

Guys, I have to make a confession here, though I'm sure you already know what it is. I've been slacking here on the blog posts! So, here is the Weekly Favorites post from two weeks ago!

Strawberry Scones with Sweet Lemon Glaze - via All Tarted Up

I'm a bit of a self admitted pastry junkie. Specifically breakfast pastries. Seriously. The worst thing that can happen to me is for someone to bring donuts to the office. So when I saw this recipe for Strawberry Scones, I had to check it out. I'm especially excited about the sweet lemon glaze on these!

Easy Chicken, Spinach, and Tomato Pasta Bake - via Maune Legacy

If you've been following along, you know I've never met a pasta I didn't like. Especially pasta with chicken and spinach, and usually some tomato and cheese mixed. Basically every ingredient found in this pasta bake. It's like we were meant to meat each other!
Chifferi Elbow Pasta with Cannellini Beans and Tuna - via The Pasta Project

The combination of pasta and fish or seafood is almost legendary. Maybe it gets a bad rap because of the old tuna noodle casserole, but done right it can be a thing of beauty! This combination of the pasta, the tuna, and beans, sounds amazing!

Pan Seared Halibut with Garlic Crab Topping - via Ask Chef Dennis

I'm almost positive you've gone into a restaurant and seen a menu item or chef special that is some form of fish topped with crab. I'm also almost positive you have paid too much for it. It's okay, I have too. Now, courtesy of Chef Dennis, you can make it at home!

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Weekly Favorites 08/05/18 to 08/11/18

Last week, for Weekly Favorites, I decided to go with a sweets and desserts theme. This week, I decided to go with another theme, and include all pasta articles!

Baked Lumaconi Pasta Shells with Chicory and Porcini - via The Pasta Project

I've always loved stuffed and baked pasta dishes. Pasta stuffed with mushrooms is one of my favorites!

Creamy Tomato Alfredo Tortellini with Sautéed Arugula and Hot Sausage - via The Sweet & Savory Couple

If I'm being honest, I have to admit that I've never been a huge fan of Alfredo sauce. I am however, a fan of tomatoes and Italian sausage. And, I've always been fascinated by tortellini!

Corn Pasta with Bacon and Pecorino Romano - via Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks

We've been cooking with a lot of corn lately. Coincidentally, we made a corn and bacon pasta dish just like this a few weeks ago with some chicken! This combination of pasta and bacon and corn is great!

Rigatoni Filled with Spinach and Gorgonzola - via Make it Kitchen

Maybe it's because I watched a lot of Popeye when I was little, but I love spinach! It's great in salads, but especially in pasta! Pasta stuffed with cheese and spinach is a delicious combination!

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Seafood Pasta Diavolo

I've always loved pasta, especially with seafood. The textures and flavors go so well together. It's especially good with some added spice, like Seafood Pasta Diavolo! Diavolo sauce, or fra diavolo sauce, is typically a tomato based sauce with some red pepper or other spice added to it to give it some heat.

Let's cook!
Seafood Pasta Diavolo
Seafood Pasta Diavolo

The Recipe:

  • 1 14.5 oz Can Diced Tomatoes
  • 1 Shallot - Diced
  • 4 Garlic Gloves - Diced
  • 1 Cup Dry White Wine
  • Scallops
  • Whole Clams
  • Shrimp
  • Crushed Red Pepper
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Linguine
  • Fresh Parsley
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil

To start, heat the olive oil over in a skillet over medium-high heat. Season the scallops with salt and pepper. Pan sear the scallops for about a minute on each side, until well seared and golden brown. Remove the scallops and set aside.

Lower the heat to medium. In the remaining oil, sauté the shallot and garlic with red pepper flakes and salt and pepper. I like mine spicy, so I use a lot of red pepper flakes. When the garlic is golden, deglaze with the wine. A sauvignon blanc works great for this. Add in the tomatoes. When the sauce begins to reduce, add in the shrimp and cover. Keep an eye on the shrimp. They will cook really fast. Flip the shrimp about halfway through. You'll know to flip them, when the pink color starts to creep up the sides. 

After you flip the shrimp, add the clams and scallops in, and cover. When the clams open, the sauce is done, and you're ready to eat! I served this with linguine, but a spaghetti or angel hair would work as well. A fresh pasta would work great too. Sprinkle some fresh chopped parsley on top. This would also pair well with some cheesy garlic bread!

**A note about the seafood. I made this dish just for me. I used five shrimp, four clams, and three scallops. Depending on how many people you are cooking for, you would need to increase the amount of seafood. Use these numbers as a guide.

Happy eating!

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Weekly Favorites 07/29/18 to 08/04/18

One of the great things about me getting behind in the blog posts, is that you get two posts in one day! Here's another batch of weekly favorites. This week, it's all sweets and desserts!

Almond Ice Cream Bars - via Game of Cookies

When you've got two little boys at home, you have to stay on your toes. Finding new snacks to keep them occupied and interested can be a challenge. This one they can even help make themselves!

Macadamia & Raspberry White Chocolate Blondie - via Tania's Kitchen

This blondie has a few things going for it. The texture isn't the heavy texture you normally get some blondies. I've had some that are more like a cookie bar than a blondie. These flavors mesh together so well and have that added sweetness after being dusted with powdered sugar. This actually looks like it could make a good breakfast cake!

Sticky Date, Toffee Pudding with Butterscotch Sauce - via Tania's Kitchen

The thing that drew me in to this recipe, was the butterscotch sauce. Hot fudge is great on ice cream, but I've always been a sucker for a good butterscotch sauce! Combine that with the toffee pudding, and you've got a winner for me!

Chocolate Afghans - via Tania's Kitchen

You may have now noticed, that I dove headfirst and explored Tania's Kitchen this week! She as some great recipes beyond these three here! I always like to have an assortment of things out when I have friends over for dinner, and these look not only super yummy, but also super easy to make! They also look portable, which is a must for parties when most people are standing around, talking!

Weekly Favorites 07/22/18 to 07/28/18

I had every intention of getting this post up last weekend. I had all of my favorite posts ready to go! Here they are, a week later!

Grilled Turkey Kabobs - via Happy Foods Tube

I don't grill a lot of turkey, but these kabobs caught my eye! These flavors sound really good, and I especially like the idea of serving it over rice!
Cookies - via Kitchen Thyme

Kitchen Thyme is a an aggregator of sorts, featuring bloggers. Their posts tend to feature on a theme. This one, is all things cookies! I've always had a sweet spot for oatmeal raisin cookies, but the ones that really caught my eye are the Fudgy Chocolate Chunk Cookies!

Red Wine Pasta from Barolo with White Ragu - via The Pasta Project

If you've followed along at all, you know I'm an eater of all things pasta! Nothing seems too exotic. This ragu is making my mouth water just thinking about it!

Elegant and Delectable with Poached Egg and Bacon Bits - via Cooking with Anadi

We do a lot of avocado toast around here. Usually it's just like it sounds, avocado and toast. Stepping up to a guacamole sounds amazing and full of healthy nutrients! Can't wait to try this one out!

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Weekly Favorites 07/15/18 to 07/21/18

Another new batch of favorite food and restaurant articles!

Easy Protein Pancakes - via Maune Legacy

Don't me wrong, I love pancakes for breakfast, especially smothered in whipped cream, macerated strawberries, and maple syrup. But sometimes, I think it would be nice to get a little bit more nutrients out of them. This pancake recipe, packs an extra punch of protein!

Foodie Girl Chicago - via Kitchen Thyme

At first glance, I was drawn to the idea that this is a blog featuring bloggers, kind of like what I'm doing here! But then, I looked at the recipes Foodie Girl Chicago is writing. These all look amazing! The Lamb Meatball Gyro Bowl and the Mexican Street Corn Pasta were instant winners for me! I'm going to be back, visiting Foodie Girl Chicago's page to look for more!

Couscous Salad with Mixed Beans, Feta Cheese and Olives - via Green Lentil

I really need to start eating better. The trouble is, a lot of healthy food just doesn't sounds good to me, most of the time. This Couscous Salad on the other hand, sounds like something I could without hesitation. Maybe it's the fact that the salad in the picture is smothered in feta, a small weakness of mine. Either way, I am going to be eating this!

Tomahawk Steak - Reverse Sear - via Shakey Eats

Look, if you haven't tried out the reverse sear method for grilling steaks, you need to stop waiting on get right to it. I was hesitant at first. Steaks are expensive, and I really didn't want to through money away with an unfamiliar cooking method. As long you as you a decent grasp of grilling meat or cooking them in a pan over the stove top, it's hard to mess this up. It's all about indirect heat anyway. Shakey Eats even gives it an added shot of butter if you needed any extra coaxing!

 Saint Arnold Beer Garden Now Open for Houston Brewery Tourists - via Ronnie Crocker

This is cool. I've been a fan of these guys for as long as I can remember. Opening their new location was a big deal back in 2009, and they have continued to grow it. Now, with another expansion with a beer garden right next door, this is just another reason beer travelers and tourists to stop by and check out the brewery!

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Cast Iron Fajitas

If you've been following along for any period of time, you've probably noticed that I love fajitas! Whenever I go to a Mexican restaurant, at least two things are almost guaranteed to happen. First, I'll probably look over the entire menu, only to go back and decide on fajitas. Usually beef, sometimes with shrimp, and sometimes a chicken and beef combo.

Cast Iron Fajitas
Cast Iron Fajitas

A few weeks ago, I got a sample of the Kingston 10 Jamaican Jerk Spice from Seasonality Spices. When I opened the package to get my first smell, I immediately realized that this spice mix would be perfect as a fajita seasoning! I got a skillet and made some Cast Iron Fajitas!

Kingston Spice Mix from Seasonality Spices
Kingston Spice Mix from Seasonality Spices

The Recipe:
Cast Iron Fajitas
Skirt Steak in the Cast Iron Skillet

  • 10 oz Skirt Steak
  • 1 Tablespoon of Kingston 10 Spice Blend
  • 2 Tablespoons of Soy Sauce
  • 3 Garlic Cloves - Minced
  • 1 Onion - Sliced
  • 1 Green Bell Pepper - Sliced
  • Tortillas

Let the skirt steak marinate in the soy sauce, Kingston 10 spice mix, and garlic for about an hour.  Start heating a cast iron skillet over medium heat while you coat the skirt steak with the seasoning. 

It is important to remember to use a lower heat when you use a cast iron skillet. A good seasoning on your cast iron can take a long time to achieve. If the heat is too high, it can cook the seasoning right out of the cast iron. This took me a long time to learn.

Marinated Skirt Steak
Marinated Skirt Steak

When the cast iron is hot, it's time to put the skirt steak on. Cooking time is going to depend on personal preference and how done you want the meat. I like a nice crust on the outside, while it still pink in the middle, about a medium-rare.

When the steak is done, remove and set aside to rest. The cast iron is going to have retained a lot of heat from cooking the steak and will be perfect for the peppers and onions! As an added bonus, the peppers and onions will absorb some of the flavors left behind from the steak!

While the peppers and onions are cooking, slice the steak. I like to cut it in half and then turn it 90 degrees to cut across the grain. This makes the steak more tender and easier to eat.

Peppers and Onions in Cast Iron
Peppers and Onions in Cast Iron
With the peppers and onions removed, the last thing to do, is to put a couple of tortillas in the cast iron for a minute or so on each side to heat them up and get them a little crispy.

With all of your ingredients ready, it's time to assemble your fajitas with your favorite condiments. I like cheese, salsa, beans, and guacamole!

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Weekly Favorites 07/08/18 to 07/14/18

Time for another batch of favorite food and restaurant articles! This week, I'm exploring articles from Red Thai Curry Prawns, to Fried Squash Blossoms!

Chocolate Coffee Nice Cream - via Daffodils and Lemons

It's interesting to me that even though I am in no way trying to cut out any specific foods in my diet, I keep finding myself drawn to recipes using alternative ingredients. At any rate this "nice cream" looks pretty good to me!

Classic Red Thai Curry with Prawns - via Annalena's Heart(h)beat

Typically, I don't make curry, but when I get the chance to eat it, I always do! I like my curry pretty spicy too! I find that the spice goes really well with the coconut milk typically found in curry recipes!

Morning Maple Cranberry Oat Pecan Bars - via Fork and Spoon Recipes 

Some mornings, you just have to have a quick breakfast. And let's face it, sometimes that quick and breakfast needs to be something portable. These bars are definitely fit the bill for quick and portable breakfast, and the pack a huge punch of nutrition!

Fried Squash Blossoms Stuffed with Crab and Mascarpone - via Brina's Bites 

Alright, full disclosure here, these fried squash blossoms instantly reminded of Gilmore Girls. There's no shame there. I'll spare you the details of the scene. After the Gilmore Girls moment had passed, I explored the recipe. First, I love crab. Second, the crab and mascarpone combination is so good! I definitely want to try my hand at making these!

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Weekly Favorites 07/01/18 to 07/07/18

Time for a new batch of weekly favorites! I've found some more articles that I'm really excited to share!

Epic Bacon Burger - via Carly Bloggs

I think that at this point, you may have realized that I never met a burger that I sent away without eating it! Throw bacon into the mix and there's no way I'm saying no. Normally, I'm all about the grill. But for those of you who don't have a grill, this recipe demonstrates how to cook a burger stove top, which I find to be a suitable second option. There are of course some nights I am too lazy to go outside and fire the grill up.

Summer Tagliolini Pasta Recipe with Marinated Vegetables - via The Pasta Project

When I'm not chowing down on a burger, I turn to my Italian roots for food inspiration. I love a really simple pasta dish, where just a few ingredients can come together to make a dish full of flavor. This Summer Tagliolini recipe just that. The ingredients list is mostly vegetables, with a few others to enhance the flavors. This sounds amazing and should go perfect on a hot Houston, TX summer day!

Breakfast Casserole with Hash Browns, Sausage, and Eggs - via Mr. B Cooks

Without even looking at the article, the title of this post reminded me of the sausage and egg casserole my mom cooked every Christmas morning and still cooks every Christmas to this day. Diving in to it, the preparation is very similar. The key difference is the addition of the hash browns and the absence of bread cubes. The nostalgia alone, we enough to draw me in to this one!

Passion Fruit Eclairs with Italian Meringue - via Lil' Cookie

What drew me in to this one was the departure from what I think of as a traditional eclair. You know what I mean. I have never had an eclair that wasn't a pastry filled with either cream or custard, topped with chocolate. Not that I am complaining. Here, Lil' Cookie takes us away from that traditional eclair with the addition of fruit and a light meringue, perfect for summer!

Best of Houston

For the past few months, I've been working on a Best Houston - Kid Friendly post. Lately though, I've come in to a bit of a snag. I've found that one or two of the places I've picked to feature as a kid friendly Houston Restaurant, have come up closed. That leaves me with eight on a list of ten! As I'm sure every parent has experienced, finding a good place to eat where not only your kids feel comfortable, but you feel comfortable taking them, and there's actually something on the menu that they will even eat, can be a challenge!

That's where you come in, dear readers. I want to hear from you! Let me know in the comments below what your favorite Houston places are to take your kids when you want to get a bite to eat!

If you need a little inspiration, check out my previous Best of Houston posts, Best Houston Coffee Shops and Houston Essential Restaurants!

While your here, leaving a few comments, you can help me out a little more. I want to write a few more Best of Houston Posts, but I want to hear from you! Best Mexican? Best Italian? Best Pizza? Let me know where you like to go!

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Weekly Favorites 06/24/18 to 06/30/18

Time for a new batch of weekly favorite food and restaurant articles! This week, I have some exciting things to share!

Blueberry Friands - via Tania's Kitchen

When I came across this blog post and read the ingredients list, I knew it had to be good! How can you go wrong combining lemon curd and blueberry together?? For the gluten free readers out there, this recipe is perfect for you!

Oven-Baked Light and Fresh Chicken Tikka Sandwich - via Cooking with Anadi

For all of you Friends fans out there, I'm a little like Joey. I love sandwiches!! This chicken sandwich has a tandoori inspired chicken with some cucumber, tomato, and spinach! Can't wait to try this one out!

Simple Won Ton Soup - via Souper Diaries

Everyone loves a good soup, especially won ton soup! Lately, when we get Chinese food on one of those nights we're all too tired to cook, won ton soup has been the go to for my wife. So, I will have to try this out to make some won ton soup for her at home!

Pineapple Tartlettes with Lime Cream - via Lil' Cookie

It's summer time, and I don't know about you, but I am always looking for some delicious and light recipes to try when it's hot out. Pineapple and lime are the perfect summer flavors!

Vanishing Yeast Rolls - via i Food Blogger 

I've long searched for the perfect yeast roll. The frozen dinner roll variety usually does the trick, but sometimes I want something more. Maybe something more like what I find when I go out to restaurants! I may have finally found it with this recipe!
Vanishing Yeast Rolls
Vanishing Yeast Rolls
Photo Credit - i Food Blogger

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Weekly Favorites 06/17/18 to 06/23/18

Time for another batch of favorite food and restaurant articles! This week, we go from chicken fajitas, to a vegan, no bake chocolate cheese cake!

Chicken Fajitas - via The Indian Claypot

I've never been shy about my love for fajitas. So when a new recipe option comes available, it is sure to catch my eye! This one is an Indian fusion recipe!

Chicken Braised with Lemon, Sage, and Olives - via Villa Sentieri

I love olives. No, really, I may have a problem! Sometimes my salads are olives with a side of olives! This chicken sounds almost perfect with lemon, sage, and of course, olives! I can't wait to try this one out!

Spaghetti with Smoked Trout Carbonara - via The Pasta Project

One of the things I love about the Weekly Favorites series, is that it helps me find inspiration for foods I might not have otherwise tried or conceived! This Smoked Trout Carbonara is one of those! I would have never thought to combine smoke trout with pasta! I will have to add this to the list of things to try!

No Bake Chocolate Coconut Cheesecake - via Game of Cookies

At first, I wasn't sold on this cheesecake recipe. I'm a bit of a purest when it comes to cheesecake and the idea of a no bake didn't quite appeal to me at first. But then, two things struck me! The flavor combination of chocolate and coconut have been steadily growing on me. Also, my wife has been trying to avoid dairy, which means if I make a cheesecake at home, I'm basically baking for myself. Maybe that's not such a bad thing! So maybe, this no bake, vegan cheesecake could make for a compromise!


Weekly Favorites 09/02/18 to 09/08/18

Time for another batch of Weekly Favorites! This week, there was no theme to follow, just whatever I found that was interesting. That's ...