Thursday, June 28, 2012

Sweet and Spicy Grilled Shrimp

These shrimp are a perfect summertime dish. You let them marinate for a day and then throw them on the grill and they are done. There is no messing up your kitchen, or turning on the hot oven in the heat of the summer! These shrimp have a great sweet and spicy combination that will certainly please a crowd. These are perfect for an appetizer or as a meal, served with brown rice!
Source: Our Best Bites

2-2.5 lbs of Shrimp, raw, shelled, and de-veined
1 tablespoon of Minced Garlic
1/4 cup of Minced Fresh Ginger
1/4 Cup of Hot Chili Garlic Paste
1/2 cup of Sweet Chili Garlic Paste
1 cup of Honey
1 cup of Lime Juice, freshly squeezed
1/2 teaspoon of Kosher Salt
1 teaspoon of Black Pepper
1 cup of Canola Oil


First, rinse the shrimp in cold water. Set aside.

Next, whisk together the garlic, ginger, hot chili garlic paste, sweet chili garlic paste, honey, salt, pepper , and oil.

Set aside one cup of the marinade.

Next, get out a container to marinade the shrimp in overnight.

Now, pour the rest of the marinade over the shrimp and seal the container.

Let them marinade for at least 24 hours and up to 48 hours.

When the shrimp are done marinading, skewer the shrimp. If using wooden skewers soak in water for 30 minutes before skewering.

Grill on each side for 1.5-2 minutes until you get grill marks. Shrimp cooks extremely fast so watch them.

Take the shrimp off of the skewers and then pour the remaining cup of the marinade over the shrimp.  Top with fresh squeezed lime and enjoy!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Salted Caramel Brownie Sandwiches

This is a rich and decadent dessert that you will only need one of, but it is oh so good. The sandwich is a perfect combination between a cookie and a brownie and the salted caramel frosting in-between could not get much better. The salted caramel is not too salty but has just the right kick to offset the sweetness.
Source: Baker Royale, originally Donna Hay


For the Brownie Cookie:
12 oz Chocolate, chopped
3 tablespoons of Butter
2 Eggs
2/3 cup of Sugar
1 teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
1/4 cup of Flour
1/4 teaspoon of Baking Powder

For Salted Caramel Frosting:
1 cup of Butter, softened
2 cups of Powdered Sugar
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1/4 cup of Caramel


For the Brownie Cookie:

First, pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.

Next, place 7 oz. of the chopped chocolate and the butter in a saucepan over low heat, stirring until melted. Set this aside.

Now, using a mixer, mix the eggs, sugar, and vanilla for 15 minutes. When it has reached a pale and creamy consistency, add the flour, baking powder, melted chocolate mixture, and remaining chopped chocolate, mix well.

Now, let the brownie cookie mixture rest for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, cover two sheet pans in wax or parchment paper.

Finally, spoon the mixture, about one tablespoon, onto the wax paper and bake 8-10 minutes or until done. Let them cool completely on the tray.

For the Salted Caramel Frosting:

First, place the butter in a bowl and beat until creamed. Add the powdered sugar and salt and mix until combined. 

Now, add the caramel and mix until combined.

The LAST step, take one brownie cookie and spread frosting, then add the other cookie on top. 


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Rosemary Lemon Skillet Chicken

This chicken dish is perfect for any time of year. It will always hit the spot. This is one of my favorite dishes because you make it all in one dish, easy clean-up. Perfect for an easy weeknight dinner. How many times can I say easy? It is so easy, really.
Source: Food Network

3-4 Chicken Breast, skinless and boneless
3/4 lb of Red Potatoes, quartered
10 oz of Cremini mushrooms, halved
2 cloves of Garlic, minced
2 Lemons, juiced and reserve skins
2 tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 1/2 tablespoons of Rosemary, chopped + 2 sprigs of fresh Rosemary
2 teaspoons of Kosher Salt
Red Pepper Flakes, to taste

First, pre-heat your oven to 450 degrees.

Next, get out a mortar and pedestal. Combine the rosemary leaves, garlic, salt, and red pepper flakes into the mortar. Combine until the ingredients form a paste.

Now, transfer paste to a bowl and add the olive oil and juice from one lemon. Add the chicken and coat well.  If I have time, I will do this part early in the day and let the chicken marinade.

Next, heat a large iron skillet over medium-high heat.

Add the chicken and cover for 5 minutes, until the skin browns. Remove the chicken and put on a separate plate.

Place the mushrooms and potatoes into the iron skillet. Put the chicken and any juices on top of the mushrooms and potatoes.

Next, put the rosemary sprigs, remaining juice of 1 lemon, and the skins of the lemons into the skillet.

Bake for 30 minutes or until chicken is done.


Monday, June 25, 2012

The "Hot Mess"

This creation is inspired from a recent episode of "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives." My husband and I love this show. Anytime we go to a new town we try to go to one of the famous restaurants. Pecan Lodge happens to be in Dallas, TX and guess what? I was going to Dallas the next day! Talk about coincidence. The show warned us to get there early, but we slept in and went late. We paid for it. They were out of the "Hot Mess" and the pulled pork sandwich. However, I did get to meet the owner. He was so nice and down to earth and not to mention humble! He said they were still trying to get all of the proportions of food to crowd ratio down and apologized. I told him I would be back and next time, I will get there early. That does not stop me from dreaming about the "Hot Mess" that I saw on TV. I knew I had to recreate it, so here it is! It was unbelievable. I would even venture to say one of the best bites I have ever had.
Source: Pecan Lodge

1 Sweet Potato
1/2 cup of Pulled Pork
1 Piece of Bacon, cooked and crumbled
A few tablespoons of Butter
A few tablespoons of Cheddar Cheese, Grated
1 tablespoon of Green Onions, chopped
Drizzle of Chipotle Cream


Pre-heat your oven to 450 degrees.

Wrap the sweet potato in aluminum foil and place in the oven for 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Remove the sweet potato and slice open horizontally.

Add the butter, and then the cheese.

Next, is the pulled pork.

Keep piling on the goodness, add the chipotle cream.

Finally, top with bacon crumbles and green onion.

Enjoy every last bite, because you will devour this! And be craving it for days to come ...

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Chipotle Cream

This is such a perfect cream sauce. It is perfect on enchiladas, tacos, baked potatoes, and just as a dip for veggies. This is seriously good and so addicting. It is spicy from the chilies and then the cream soothes the heat. The cilantro and lime gives it the fresh summer kick that it needs. Make a batch of this wonderful sauce and keep it in your fridge, it won't last long, I promise.
Source: Recipe Girl

16 oz. Sour Cream or Plain Yogurt
1 clove of Garlic, smashed
1 can of Chipotle Chilies in Adobo Sauce, 11 oz., use just the chilies and set the adobo sauce aside to use if you want more heat
1/2 teaspoon of Cumin
1/4 teaspoon of Salt
1 tablespoon of Cilantro, chopped
1/2 of a Large Lime or 1 Small Lime, squeezed


I used a food processor to make this cream sauce. It was very simple and took no time. However, you can make this without a food processor, just chop and dice all of your ingredients very fine and mix them together.

First, get a medium size bowl and add the sour cream or yogurt.

Add, the garlic, chipotle chilies, and cilantro. Mix well.

Then, add the cumin, salt, and lime.

Last but not least, taste. If you think it needs more cumin, add it. More lime, add it. Cater this sauce to your personal tastes. If it is too spicy add more sour cream or yogurt. Not spicy enough? Add more adobo sauce from the chilies.


Saturday, June 23, 2012

Dr. Pepper Pulled Pork

Here in the Barbee household we eat a lot of pork. I especially love pulled pork and this combination with Ethan's favorite, Dr. Pepper, was no exception. I knew this would be a winner. I served it with whole wheat rolls and cheddar cheese for Ethan. This was perfect and definitely had a kick to it from the cayenne, but the sweetness from the Dr. Pepper complimented it well.


1 Pork Tenderloin
2 teaspoons of Cayenne Pepper
1 teaspoon of Dry Mustard
1 tablespoon of Worcestershire Sauce
1/4 cup of Apple Cider Vinegar
1 20 oz. Dr. Pepper


First, mix the cayenne pepper and the mustard together. 

Now, rub the pork tenderloin thoroughly, getting into every crack and crevasse. 

Place your seasoned pork into your crockpot.

Pour the worcestershire sauce, vinegar, and Dr. Pepper into the crockpot. 

Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 5 hours. 

Shred the pork 30 minutes before you are ready to eat and let it simmer in the juices.

Serve on a bun or eat it by itself, I promise it is good however you decide. 


Friday, June 22, 2012

S'mores Cookies

These cookies are the perfect summertime cookie. They are reminiscent of camping, but indoors! These are perfect for any outdoor barbecue or sleepover for your kids. They are very easy to make and look impressive and unique! The cinnamon, marshmallow, chocolate, and graham cracker combination is not a force to be reckoned with, they are perfect.
Source: The Girl Who Ate Everything

11 tablespoons Unsalted Butter, softened
1 cup of Golden Brown Sugar, packed firmly
1/2 cup of Sugar
2 Eggs
1 teaspoon of Vanilla
1 teaspoon of Baking Soda
1/2 teaspoon of Sea Salt
1/2 teaspoon of Cinnamon
2 1/2 cups of Flour
1/2 cup of Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 cup of Mini-Marshmallows
6 regular-size Hershey's Bars, broken into squares
1 box of Graham Crackers, each bar broken in half


First, in a medium size bowl, whisk the baking soda, sea salt, cinnamon, and flour well, until combined.

Now, get another bowl out. Mix the butter,  sugar, and brown sugar.

After these ingredients are combined, add the eggs and vanilla.

Slowly start added the dry ingredients from earlier until combined well.

Next, fold in the mini-marshmallows and chocolate chips.

Put your dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes up to 24 hours.

Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees.

Line 2 sheet pans with wax paper.

Put the graham crackers on the wax paper. The crackers should be next to each other, touching. Make sure the crackers are broken in half, these are cookies!

Form the cookie dough into balls, about 1-1.5 tablespoon, and press onto the cookie.

Bake the cookies for 5 minutes, remove from oven and press each cookie with a Hershey square and bake for 5 more minutes. My first batch had bigger cookies on the graham cracker so they needed 8 more minutes. The second batch only need 5 additional minutes, so keep your eye on them!

Let cool and enjoy!