Welcome to One Little Corner of the World. I share with you new recipes, some family recipes, and the antics of my kids. Enjoy reading!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Love

I just want to go on the record as saying that I never thought I could love someone as much as I love each of my kids. My heart just fills with joy whenver I look at them. My head also gets frustrated too - when they don't follow directions and such, but mostly it is just love. I can't wait to see what type of people they become, but I don't want them to grow up too fast. They are such a joy to me and the greatest gift from God. I just wanted to say that. Look at your kids and watch your heart fill to its fullest. There is no better feeling.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Great Wings Like Fast Eddie's in Alton, IL

There is a restaurant in Alton Illinois called Fast Eddie's Bon Air. They don't serve many different foods, but what they do serve is fabulous. I am in the process of trying to recreate some of their items. The one I think I have mastered so far is Hot Chix on a Stick. Fast Eddie's takes chicken wings, puts seasoning on them and grills them on a kabob stick. They are wonderful. What follows is my take on the recipe. Enjoy.

5 lbs. chicken wings - not frozenEmril's Essense or grill seasoning of your choice.
Rub seasoning on fresh chicken wings and let marinate for 1 hour in refrigerator. Preheat oven to 300. Spread wings on sheet pan and bake for 20 minutes in oven. Take wings out of oven and finish on grill over medium to medium high heat.

You can either skewer these or not. My husband and I have made them both ways and we feel that cooking them without the skewers is a little easier.

We have made these several times and everybody who has eaten them has just loved them. We are going to try them next time with hot sauce on the grill. We will keep you posted

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Cooking for Kids

Okay - I had this great idea that I got while in Chicago. I had a flatbread pizza with bbq chicken and it was really good. I decided to try to recreate it at home. I cooked some chicken breasts in the oven with spices, tore them up with a fork and dumped them in a pan with bbq sauce to slow cook for a while. In the meantime, I took out some flatbread, put bbq sauce as the base and added cheese. When the chicken was warmed up, I put it on top of the pizza added more cheese and baked the pizzas in the oven at 450 degrees. My husband thought it was very good, but my youngest child thought it was terrible.

I then decided to try regular pizza with the rest of the flatbread. My husband loved it, I mean loved it, and both my kids, of course, thought it was terrible. I guess you can't win. I will make pizza again, but I will try it with a regular crust. Maybe this time they will like it.

Have a nice day.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Mexican Pasta with Shrimp and Sausage

This is a recipe I created. I love to cook and try new things. Once I tried Chorizo sausage, I knew I had to create a recipe that incorporated the sausage and my other favorite food group – shrimp. My family loves shrimp and sausage. This makes a tasty dish. Serve it with a salad and bread. It is great!

Servings 4

Ingredients
1 pound uncooked chorizo sausage links.
1 pound peeled and deveined shrimp
1 large handful cilantro
4 cloves garlic - minced
1 cup white wine
1 1/2 cup chicken stock - or broth
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon cajun seasoning
1 lb linguini
2 tsp pepper divided
1 tsp salt divided
juice and zest of one lime
1/2 cup olive plus 1 tbsp

Prep
Slice sausage and cook in a large skillet with 1 tbsp olive oil until cooked through. Drain well both skillet and sausage. While sausage is cooking marinate shrimp in olive oil lime juice and zest, cajun seasoning, 1/2 salt and pepper. Cook pasta per package directions. While pasta is cooking saute garlic in the same skillet as sausage; add shrimp and cook until pink; deglaze pan with white wine. Add sausage, chicken stock, cumin, rest of salt and pepper, and cook for 5 minutes. Add drained pasta, cilantro, and toss to combine. Serve immediately.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Things I am Thankful For

Okay, I am copying from my friend's blog and writing about the things for which I am most thankful. I think it is a wonderful idea to remember what makes us give thanks; every day.

1. I am so thankful for my kids. I look at them each day and thank God for the most beautiful gift. I think, like most moms, that I have the most precious, terrific kids. I can't imagine life without them.

2. I am thankful for my husband. He truly is the one I never thought I would meet. That line comes from our wedding song - Slow Dancing. It is true, though. He is my best friend and one of the best people to come into my life.

3. I am thankful for my in-laws. I don't have family very close to me, but my in-laws are always there for us, and I truly am thankful. They make good friends too!

4. I am thankful for my familytoo. As it grows smaller, I realize how fortunate I have been to have such wonderfully supportive people around me. I miss my grandparents and mother every day of my life and still cry over the loss. I am thankful, though, that I had so many years to share with them and learn from them. I am lucky to still have family left. My dad and stepmother are very caring, and my aunt is one of the most wonderful people in the world. My Grandma is a wonderful person who makes me laugh. I have been able to get a little closer to my brother and that makes me feel good. I am very lucky.

5. I think I have some of the best friends in the world. Dot - you stepped in when my mom died and I love you for it. You are a wonderful person. Patti, thank you for always listening to me and just being there; you too, Beth, my dinner buddy. Kathleen, my friend from my single days - always there to remind me how much we have changed and grown. Andrea, my college buddy and probably best friend in the world. We have been through so much together - I am so thankful for our friendship. I am also thankful for my new friends too - Robin, Katrina, my school friends - you all help me in many ways and make my life so much better. Thank you. There are other friends I haven't mentioned, but you know who you are and how much you have been there for me - thanks so much. I am truly blessed

6. I love my house - we moved in about two years ago and have had much fun decorating it. It is the house of our dreams.

7. I love malls. I admit it. I love to go shopping. It is one of my favorite things to do. I am thankful someone created them.

8. I am thankful for the feeling of family, love, and togetherness that only comes around during the holidays.

9. I am thankful for every day - each day is a gift, a precious gift.

10. I am thankful for the little things in life that make one smile; a beautiful day, gorgeous flowers, great perfume, a well prepared meal, and all the other things that bring a smile.

Remember this holiday season to give thanks for all your gifts. Have a great holiday!!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

People I would like to meet III

I have always wanted to meet Laura Ingells Wilder. When I was a little girl, I wanted to be her. As a child, she was my idol. Her life seemed to be so interesting and I was always sort of depressed that I couldn't ever experience things like that for the first time.

I remember talking to my great grandma one time about the changes in her life because I thought it was so cool that she was born before airplanes, televisions, cars, and things like that. I think the main reason for my fascination about Laura Ingalls Wilder was the fact that she was able to experience for the firs time, things I have always taken for granted. I thought it was so sad for her that she died just a couple of days after she got a new refrigerater for her house. It was a birthday present from her daughter

The other part that I really liked about her was that no matter what she went through, life was still a joy. I wish more of us could look at life like that.

Pay it Forward

The other day, I made a turkey with all the trimmings for my husband. I love cooking food that my family loves to eat. My kids didn't like the turkey, but my husband sure did. I bought two bone-in breasts, and with the bones, made turkey soup. I sent some home with one of my friends for her mother and some to one of the guys who works with my husband.

It is nice to be able to give. I am always reminded of that movie - Pay it Forward. I think we should all try to pay it forward. My goal for this holiday season is to try to pay if forward as often as I can. We are so lucky to have the life we do, and I want to try to share some of that with people.

How can you pay it forward?

Friday, November 16, 2007

People I Would Like to Meet Part II

I would love to meet Sara Jessica Parker. She is never afraid to try something different when it comes to fashion. I wish I could be a little more like that. I like to think I am fashion savy, but in reality I pretty much stick to the same types of clothes all the time. If she could just give me a little advice, that would be great. I will tell you that some of the things she wore on Sex and the City were not my taste at all, but it really isn't about wanting to dress like her, it is about wanting to be able to figure out more easily what looks good on me. Who do you want to meet?

Thursday, November 15, 2007

People I would like to meet

I just read the book, Night, by Elie Wiesel. I would love to meet him. He survived the concentration camps during WWII and wrote about his experiences in such a touching and riviting way. My students, who also read the book, tell me that they now look at the Holocaust in a totally different way because of his story. I would like to thank him for sharing what had to be the worst time of his life. He put such a human face on a part of history. Right now I am reading Dawn, the second book in the trilogy. Pick up a copy if you have a chance. It will open your eyes.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

We are having a potluck at school tomorrow. I said I would make chilimac because I have some canned chili. When I got home however, I found that I didn't have any chili. I had to make it. It was quite interesting, rifling through my cabinet looking for the ingredients. I ended up using some of the tomatoes I froze at the end of the summer. I think the chili turned out good. I hope my coworkers like it tomorrow.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Trying new recipes

I am getting ready to try a new recipe. It came to me as I was driving. I love Jambalaya. It is one of my favorite dishes to make and can. I am going to try chicken with a jambalaya sauce. You knwo sausage, shrimp, peppers, the works. I can't wait. I am going to try it on Thursday when I am home from school. If all works well, I will be entering this recipe in a contest. Stay tuned!!!

Cooking for family and friends

I made Spagetti and Sausage for my family the other day. I made a very large batch so I could send some to one of the oler ladies in town. She can't cook much now but she still likes to eat home cooked food. I have been sending her food for almost a year now. I like being able to help people and cooking for someone is just a big bonus for me.
My father-in-law just had surgery last week, so I brought him some crumb cake - he loves desserts and sweets. He said it was so good it must be bad for you. I don't want him to know that it took 3 sticks of butter to make the two round cakes. The knowledge alone would clog his arteries.
One of my great dishes to send in Cold Tuna Noodle Salad. It is Steve's grandma's recipe and I, of course, make a poor imitation. People seem to like it though. I will put the recipe in my next post for those who might want it.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Cooking Family Memories

This past weekend, my family and I went to visit my side of the family. I was reminded how important it is to keep family alive for my kids. One of the best ways is through food. One of the staples of my growing up was fried potatos. My aunt and grandma make the best fried taters I have ever had. The secret ingredient is bacon grease. That is what makes them the best.

Get a skillet very hot, add bacon grease, potatos, salt and pepper. Let the potatos cook until they start to turn golden brown on the bottom. Turn the potatos and cook until done. They are fabulous!!! Cooking these potatos for my family is one way I can keep my side alive for them.
What do you have in your family food vault that can bring some family memories for you?

Sundays

For the past year, my husband and I have been working on a recipe for Chicksen wings. We go to this restaurant in Alton IL where they serve Hot Chick on a Stick. They totally rock. I have been trying to mimic the cooking method for the past year and tonight I think I really got it.
All you have to do is put your favorite rub on fresh - not frozen - chicken wings, let them sit in the fridge for a while - about an hour, bake them in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes, and finish them on the grill - cooking slowly at medium until they are done. They are fabulous and they require no sauce unless one chooses to put some on.

Try cooking your favorite restaurant meal. It is fun to try to recreate something that tastes so good to you. Have fun grilling.

Christmas in July

Ok, it is Christmas in July. I am very excited. My husband just bought me a Kitchen Aid mixer. I am ready to make some bread and some great desserts. There are some really cool recipes that came with the mixer. I can't wait to start working with it.
For the Fourth, we will be grilling. I am going to try to copy some wings I ate at a restaurant called Fast Eddie's at Bon Air. It is a killer restaurant. It looks like a dive, but the food is fabulous. Only adults are allowed in this place, and you stand in line to order your food.
There aren't many choices; burgers, brats, pork kabobs, hot chix on a stick, the big elmo - not sure about that one, peel and eat shrimp, and a couple more. You can also get french fries. I think you have to order a couple of drinks too. I have never seen the place not busy, there is always a line for food.

After talking to the owner, I found out that the restaurant will be featured on Asphalt Dining - I think that is the name - with Alton Brown on August 1.

I will let you know how the chicken comes out. Happy Fourth!!!!!

Vacation

My husband and I went to the Biltmore Estate for a few days. It is such a beautiful house and we have lots of fond memories of the place. One of the really neat places there is the stable restaurant. They have a chicken that is to die for. I found the recipe and made the chicken today.
I have never had such tender chicken in my life. One has to start by soaking the chicken in a brine that has sage, salt, onion powder, and garlic powder. After you soak the chicken in the brine for 1 and 1/2 hours, you put a rub on it that has paprika, salt, pepper, and garlic. The chicken bakes for about an hour in the oven. I tried it and it was wonderful. I think there is so much I can do with this chicken. I am really excited to work with it tomorrow.
It is great to be able to remember trips that one takes. It brings back the memories and keeps them fresh. Share your trip with others through food!

Monday, June 4, 2007

Canning - the answer to quick food Part two

My canner is making noise as we speak. I cooked 16 pints of chili and 5 quarts of jambalaya. I usually cook my soups and chilis one day and can them another day. This way any grease that is in the dish makes its way to the top of the pot, and it can then be scraped off. This makes your dish even healthier.Canning is one way I take care of my family. I know what they eat, how it is prepared, and what goes into their food. It is one of my little ways to let them know how much I love them.

Canning - the answer to quick food

On Sunday my friend came over and we made Jambalaya and chili. The jambalaya turned out great. She brought this great spicy sausage that really added a great flavor to the dish. We chopped, sliced, diced, and generally made a huge mess in the kitchen. My friend hadn't canned before, so this was a learning experience for her. I think the canning process was easier than she originally thought. Canning isn't that difficult. The really neat part is that you don't have to spend all day in the kitchen. We did because we decided to make two different meals. My big tip for anyone wanting to can soups and chilis is to cook them one day and to can them the next. The reason for this is the grease that will rise to the top after cooling off in the fridge for the night. We cooked a large batch of chili and while the flavor was great, I could taste grease in the chili I ate the day we made it. After letting the chili sit all night, there was quite a bit of grease that had risen to the top. Not only is this healthier for a person, I think it tastes much better with no grease. I know. You are thinking that I should just drain the meat, right? I did, but the meat I used came from a split side of beef and some of it is greasy. For anyone who wants to know, canning chili is simple. All you have to do is cook your chili, put it into clean, sterilized canning jars, add lids and liners, and place it in a canner with enough water so that 1/3 of each jar is covered. Put the lid on the canner and adjust to 10 pounds of pressure. Bring the canner to a boil and cook under ten pounds of pressure for 35 minutes.Have fun canning! It is a great way to have the good food you like any time you want

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Yummy Dinner

Two of my favorite foods are sausage and shrimp. Put them together and you have a great meal. I sauted garlic in olive oil, added white wine, chicken stock, cumin, chili powder, salt, pepper, and lemon, and cooked the liquid down. I added cooked anduille sausagde, shrimp, and asiago cheese. After everything was heated through, I added parsely and the pasta. I tossed everything together, added a little more asiago cheese and ate dinner.It was a very good dinner, and it only took a few minutes to make. There is nothing better than cooking a wholesome meal for your family

The Cook's Corner

This is the blog of a foodie. I love cooking and I want to share my love of cooking with anyone who cares to listen. I will be posting different entries that center on what I am cooking and what I would like to cook. I would love input from other people. Sharing a love of cooking is a wonderful thing.

What is your banjo (your light, what brings you joy)? Mine is my family, cooking, and writing. For me cooking and writing are my ways to express myself. Instead of saying I love you over and over; even though I say it all the time, I show my family in other ways. I cook for them. I try to give them the best food, prepared the best way I know how. Chopping fresh herbs; using good ingredients; making up recipes; and amazingly enough, cleaning up are all things I enjoy doing not only for my family; but for myself as well.

Canning is another favorite hobby of mine. One of the neatest aspects of canning is that I can have homemade food at the drop of a hat. There really is no limit to the things one can can. I have canned chili, jambalaya, tortilla soup, taco soup, clam chowder, and tortilla soup. After gaining fifty pounds eating fast food while I was in school, it is great that I can eat healthy without much fuss at night.