Welcome to my site!

Welcome to my site!
I'm Cindy, and I love to cook! And, I love to eat... hence the size of my rear end! I come from a long line of cooks. My great great Grandmother was a cook in the original Harvey Houses. My grandmother Julia was an awesome cook, and my mom was incredible. I owe my skills to these great women. Especially my Mom who said this to me about making gravy... "Cindy Lynn, wallpaper paste is wallpaper paste & gravy is gravy. Never the two shall meet!" Shall we say my first experience at making gravy left a little bit to be desired! Thank the high heavens my cooking skills have improved since then! Enjoy!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

And the winner is...

The Blog Friends Forever award was given to me by Jill of Salem Daily Photo. Thanks very much Jill. You honor me!

Now, it is my turn to pass the award onto five other bloggers according to following rules:

1. Only five people are allowed
2. Four have to be dedicated followers of your blog
3. One has to be someone new or recently new to your blog and live in another part of the world. (Can that include another part of the U.S.?? I sure hope so Jill, because I don't have anyone that I am aware of that is from a different country. Many visit, but no one has left comments!)
4. You must link back to whoever gave you the award

Here are my choices upon whom I am bestowing this wonderful award:

The Jason Show
Mrs. Lincoln

Happy Blogging!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Red Beans and Rice

Traditionally Red Beans and Rice were served in New Orleans on Monday. This is because Monday was wash day, and the women could place the pot of red beans on the stove in the morning and let them cook all day while they did the laundry.
As far as I'm concerned, any day is a good day for this dish! Nothing better than a flavorful pot of Red Beans with Andouille Sausage served over rice.


1 pkg of Red Beans
1 Tbls olive oil
1 white onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, seeded and chopped
Chopped fresh parsley, about 1 handful
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbls Tony Chachere’s seasoning
14 – 16 oz Andouille Sausage, sliced into rounds (If you cannot get andouille, you could use a kielbasa)
1 ham hock
1 quart of chicken broth
1 ½ cup water
Cooked long grain white rice


Prepare the red beans. Soak overnight in water. Or, you can use the fast prep method described on the package. Do not use canned red beans. This recipe requires the long cooking time.
Whichever method of preparing the beans you choose, make sure to drain the soaking water completely and rinse the beans. It is said that disposing of this water will help reduce the amount of flatulence you get when eating beans.
Prepare the bell pepper, parsley, onion and garlic.

Heat the oil in a soup pot. (Make sure that you use a large enough pot so that there is room for the beans to boil for a prolonged period of time. The blue pot in my picture below was not large enough. I ended up having to transfer the mixture to a larger pot.)

Add the garlic to the oil and cook until it starts to sizzle. Be careful not to let it burn. Add onions to the pot and cook until translucent.

Add the bell pepper and parsley to the pot. Cook until the vegetables wilt.

Add the beans, chicken broth and water to the pot. Add the ham hock.
Bring to a boil. Add the Andouille sausage and the Tony's to the pan. Lower heat to a simmer. Cook until the beans are tender and then mixture has thickened. This will take about 3 - 4 hours.
Serve the Red Beans over hot white rice. You can adjust the amount of Tony's up or down depending upon your taste. I actually added a bit more to my recipe - but I like my red beans spicy.
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Thursday, October 16, 2008

Thai Red Curry Chicken

Do you have a Trader Joe's near you? If so, this is a very quick, easy and most importantly TASTY meal. It's perfect for a night where you don't really feel like cooking - don't have a lot of time to cook - or just don't know what to make for dinner. I always have a bottle or two of this on my pantry shelf. It's truly fantastic - and as full flavored as it is, I doubt anyone would guess that it came from a bottle!


1 bottle of Trader Joes Thai Red Curry Sauce
2 lbs of boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite size pieces
Cooked long grain rice
If desired, 1 white onion chopped (I don’t use the onion because my son prefers this with just the chicken and sauce)
1 Tbls Olive Oil
1 tsp Cumin Powder


1. Heat oil in non stick skillet.

2. If using onion, add onion to skillet and cook until translucent.

3. Add chicken to skillet; sprinkle with cumin powder. Cook until the chicken is cooked through and beginning brown.

4. Add the Trader Joes Thai Red Curry Sauce. Continue to cook until sauce is bubbling.

5. Serve chicken over cooked long grain white rice.

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Monday, October 6, 2008

Mediterranean Chicken and Orzo

This is a surprisingly easy and tasty recipe. For the amount of flavor contained in it, you would think it would take a huge amount of time to prepare. I love orzo, and the addition of the lemon and oregano to this dish makes me feel like I'm enjoying it on the Mediterranean. I've adapted it from the "Flat Belly Diet Cookbook", which is based on the Mediterranean diet and incorporates a lot of monounsaturated fats into your diet in order to make you feel more satisfied with less food. (Serves 4)


2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, slice in half lengthwise to make them half the thickness
Garlic Salt
1 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp olive oil
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup orzo
1 lemon, peeled and cut into chunks (try to remove as many seeds as possible)
20 pitted kalamata olives, rough chop
1 cup of marinated artichoke hearts, drained and cut into quarters
2 cups baby spinach
1 tomato, seeded and chopped
½ cup sliced roasted red pepper (I use jarred, but you could roast a fresh red pepper in the oven)
½ cup crumbled feta cheese


1. Pat the chicken breasts dry; sprinkle with garlic salt and oregano

2. Heat a nonstick skillet; add olive oil

3. Place chicken breasts into skillet; cook for 7 minutes turning once. Don’t overcook, but make sure they aren’t still pink in the middle. Remove to a plate.

4. Add the orzo to the pan; stir gently; add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add the lemon; reduce heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes, or until the orzo is tender.

5. Stir in the olives, tomato, red pepper, spinach and artichoke hearts. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring to heat through. Sprinkle with feta cheese.
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