Blueberry Sour Cream Skillet Bread with Streusel Topping

Today, July 11th, is National Blueberry Muffin Day. Okay, so this is not a blueberry muffin, it is something better. And I mean way better! My skillet bread uses a simple batter that could be used for muffins, but why when you can make skillet bread. The cast iron skillet allows the bread to cook evenly and gives a nice crust to the outsides of the bread.

The sour cream and lemon juice add a nice tang to the sweet and tartness of the blueberries. You will want to definitely make this for breakfast tomorrow. I should have made two because my first bread was gone in a couple of hours. I had to hide a piece for my wife to have when she got home. Darn kids wouldn’t stop eating it. :))

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Bacon and Egg Bake with Sausage Gravy

Okay so the kids have been out of school for over a week now. I am trying to figure out a schedule that works for me and them because it usually takes me a few weeks to get used to a new routine. Of course they are already bored and letting me know there is nothing to eat in the house or all the food is the “same old same old”. I was tired of hearing them complaining the other morning, so I came up with this quick breakfast bake using ingredients I had on hand. There are many versions of this recipe on the web, but none topped with sausage gravy. Yum!!

Bacon and Egg Bake with Sausage Gravy

The great part about this recipe is you can add any ingredients your kids like. They could even make this themselves. Quick and easy and maybe the kids will not complain for a couple of days.

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Cornbread Salad

This weekend is the unofficial start of Summer. As I sit here at my desk it is a balmy 42°F outside. I know our community plans to open the pool on Friday. I think my swim trunks will stay in the closet. Trust me that is good news for everyone.

Many people have cookouts planned for this weekend. My Cornbread Salad recipe is a great easy dish to bring to your cookout or potluck. It is amazing how well the cornbread mixes in with this layered salad. People might look at you funny when you tell them the name but not after tasting it. Add jalapeno if you would like it a little more

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Pretzel Dogs

Okay I love homemade pretzels. I have been making this recipe for many friend and family gatherings over the last year. Friends don’t believe these are homemade. Let them be impressed, but don’t tell them how easy they are to make.

I have been on a yeast kick lately and this recipe is another wonderful type of yeast bread. My recipe is for pretzel dogs, instead of plain pretzels. I do use the excess dough to make pretzel nuggets as an added treat. This makes a great appetizer for kids and adults or a fun dinner for a kid’s birthday party. It will make a great appetizer for Easter. They also freeze well and heat up easily in the microwave.

The dough recipe is from Alton Brown and is simply the best. I use it as a base for different pretzel treats. Very versatile.

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Rosemary Focaccia Bread

I have been experimenting with different yeast breads lately. Yeast is easier to work with than you think. Don’t be scared; if you have a stand mixer, with a dough hook, you are in business. This recipe lets the mixer do all the work, kneading the dough.

This makes a very large loaf. I think I will try this again making 3 smaller loaves to get more of the yummy crunchy edges.

The recipe calls for a large amount of oil but it needs it to get the crunchy edges.

Goes great with my Lasagna or a hearty Bolognese sauce. The bread also freezes well.

Blogger note…. I’ve made this recipe many times with great results. I was ready to post last week but couldn’t find my finished product pictures. Not fun, but it happens. So of course I had to make another batch last Friday. My neighbor “Amber” loves this bread, but I think she is going to kill me if I keep making it and giving her samples. She says I am trying to make her fat. No chance she is very thin. Now she can make Focaccia bread herself and stop blaming me. I will send her a sample of one of my new creation’s soon.”

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Basic French Toast

Basic French Toast20150224_075221

I have been known to spoil my kids with food. They all have exceptional palates. Many mornings, before school, I will fix them a hot breakfast. I also like to make a nice breakfast, on the weekends, when they have a sleepover with friends.

Everyone needs a basic go to French toast recipe. I add a little more vanilla and cinnamon than most recipes. If I’m out of cinnamon sometimes I will substitute pumpkin spice. I like to use Texas toast in my recipe because the thicker slice bread holds together better. Cook it on a slightly lower temperature and a little longer to firm up the bread. This keeps the toast from soggy in the middle.

(TIP: Be sure to butter your griddle or pan before each batch.)

I fix a whole loaf of bread when I make french toast. It freezes well and can be reheated in the toaster straight from the freezer. (To make a smaller quantity just cut the recipe in 1/3rds. See bottom of post for recipe.)

This recipes makes 15 slices of French Toast.

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Quick Ciabatta Bread

This bread is a cross between Ciabatta and rustic French Boule. It is very good right out of the oven or for breakfast the next day, toasted, topped with almond butter and blackberry jam. Yum!!!

Quick Ciabatta Bread,
Quick Ciabatta Bread,

If you have not worked with yeast don’t be afraid it’s not that difficult. Make sure you use yeast that has not expired and lukewarm water. The water needs to be between 100° and 115°. To cold and the yeast will not activate, to hot and it will kill the yeast.

This goes great with my Beef Daube Cajun Style.

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Beef Daube Cajun Style

Beef Daube Cajun Style,
Beef Daube Cajun Style,

In honor of New Orleans, Mardi Gras and french influence’s on their local cuisine, I wanted to share my recipe for Beef Daube Cajun Style.

Beef Daube Cajun Style
Beef Daube Cajun Style

I made this dish yesterday to have for dinner tonight. It is better if served the next day but can be served immediately. I also made fresh Quick Ciabatta Bread which goes great with this hardy dish. It is very cold and snowy today and a warm hearty dish will hit the spot.

Quick Ciabatta Bread,
Quick Ciabatta Bread,

I spiced up the traditional Beef Daube by adding Cajun blackened seasoning. I use all natural Cajun’s Choice brand. This adds just enough kick to add a New Orleans flare.

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Mexican Ground Turkey served on Authentic Sopes

This recipe is the second in my Cinco De Mayo series. For your appetizer see my post for Mexican Black Bean Dip.

This recipe is a twist on basic taco meat filling. I use ground turkey quite often in our house and I am always looking for ways to use it instead of beef. The little sweet peppers used in this recipe are awesome. I found them at my local Kroger’s produce department. I made an authentic Sope (pronounced “SOH-peh”) as the base for the filling.

Sope is as popular in Mexico as is the tortilla and is made with the same ingredients. It is a thick, hand formed type of tortilla, with the edges crimped into a shallow bowl, when fried it becomes a container for lots of different fillings. It will take you a few times to get the thickness right. If you don’t have the time or patience for Sopes, this filling works great for tacos or enchiladas.


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Spicy Cheese Straws

Spicy Cheese Straws

Once a month, during the fall and winter, we are get together with a group of old neighbors to play cards. We usually get together once a month . The group can be large at times. It is very casual and everyone brings an appetizer to share. I always try to make something new and last month I decided to make spicy cheese straws. This is a fairly simple appetizer and makes for a nice presentation. I found this while looking for new ideas for appetizers. I adapted the recipe to my own taste and doubled it. The original recipe is from Ann Maloney at The site has a large selection of unique recipes.

Makes about 36

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