Saturday, September 15, 2012

Party Shrimp Shooters

Hey Y'all!
It's tailgating season right now, so here is an awesome recipe that you can use at a tailgating event or just for entertaining at home. If you make it at home, I like to use clear shot glasses for the "wow factor", however, if you are transporting it to a tailgate party, store the shrimp in a zip loc bag, and the salsa in separate bag (keep cold on ice in a cooler) and assemble them on site. For practical purposes, you can purchase some 2 oz. plastic containers from a local restaurant (the kind they use for dips, dressings and salsas) or you can also just use 3 oz. Solo plastic cups. Bring along some tortilla chips, because you won't want to waste a drop of this delicious salsa; believe me, it is THAT good! Enjoy the up coming fall season and this easy recipe!

Party Shrimp Shooters
1 -1 pound bag, fully cooked frozen shrimp, (large size, with tails on), thawed
     40 -50 ct. per bag
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp lemon pepper
1 Tbl Parsley flakes
1 tsp.fresh lime juice
  1. In medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Gently stir with a spoon to coat shrimp with spices. Cover and refrigerate.
Pineapple & Mango Salsa
4 green onions, chopped fine

2 cups store bought Mango, Red Pepper Salsa  (I found this at Sam's)
1 cup crushed pineapple, drained
1 cup finely chopped green bell pepper, (about 1 medium)
Juice of one lime * (I squeeze out one tsp first to use on shrimp, then use the remaining juice for salsa)
1 1/2 tsp lemon pepper
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp salt
1 Tbl granulated sugar
4 drops bottled hot sauce * optional
1/4 cup finely minced fresh cilantro
Tortilla chips
  1. In large bowl, combine all ingredients. Stir with a spoon to blend well.
  2. Divide evenly into 20 shot glasses or individual 2-3oz plastic cups
  3. Top each cup with two chilled shrimp, tails hanging over edge of cup or glass.
  4. Serve immediately, or refrigerate, well covered until serving
  5. Yields: 20 shrimp shooters 
Serve with tortilla chips on the side
* Tip: For ease in chopping fresh cilantro, I like to cut off just the leafy parts and place in a large measuring cup. Using kitchen shears, I simply cut the cilantro into tiny pieces.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Tutti Fruity Veggie Pops

Hey Y'All,
Here in the Low Country, our summers are hot & humid. For a delicious, refreshing cool treat, these pops are the perfect answer, on a hot summer day. By combining fresh carrots, fresh peaches, honey, frozen orange juice concentrate, and non fat, Greek yogurt; this becomes a very healthy and nutritious treat. The pretty peach color is reminiscent of my childhood push pops, with a new flavor twist combination. Hope you enjoy this cool, healthy treat!


1 1/2 cups, fresh carrots, (peeled, & ends cut off), and sliced into 1/4 " coins    (approximately 2 very large, or 4 medium)

 3 fresh peaches; (medium size) peeled, pitted, and sliced

 1 1/2 cups water

 1/4 cup frozen orange juice concentrate

 1 (5 oz carton), Dannon, Non Fat, Oikios, Honey Flavored, Greek Yogurt

 2 teaspoons honey

1. In medium saucepan, combine carrots and water. Cook over high heat, bringing water to a boil; reduce heat to medium, cover and cook for 18 minutes.

2. Add peaches to pan, bring water back to a boil, cover and continue cooking over medium heat for 14 -15 more minutes, checking & stirring occasionally to make sure there is still a little water in pan. If needed add 1/4 cup more hot water, to keep mixture from sticking. After second cooking, remove pan from heat, and allow mixture to cool, while keeping pan covered.

3. After mixture cools a minimum of 45 minutes, remove lid, and thoroughly mash mixture with a potato masher; (do not drain any remaining liquid). Place mixture in a blender, along with honey, and frozen orange juice concentrate. Pulse on liquefy setting, for about 10 -15 seconds. Stir mixture, and scrape sides of blender to make sure all of mixture gets well blended. Repeating scraping & pulsing if necessary, until mixture is smooth and creamy.

4. Add yogurt to mixture in blender; pulse again at liquefy setting, for 10 -15 second intervals, until mixture is well blended, and creamy. Repeat stirring, scraping and pulsing of needed.

5. Pour mixture into an 8 portion, silicone brownie pop mold, or into 6 ( 3oz) Dixie or Solo cups. Place in freezer, and freeze for 30 -45 minutes. Using lollipop sticks for brownie pop size, (or wooden sticks for Dixie cups size)insert sticks into center of each pop. Freeze for several more hours, or overnight until mixture is frozen firm** Tip: If using Dixie Cups or Solo cups as molds, place cups in the individual sections of a mini muffin pan, so they won't tip over while freezing.

6. To release pops from silicone mold, or Dixie Cups, run quickly under warm water.

Yield: 6-8 pops

Easy Summer Salsa

Hey Y'all,
I developed this recipe because my daughter was tired of the processed salsa at the store and I was looking for something fresh that utilized the summer vegetables. It is especially good with whole grain tortilla chips for a healthier alternative. It will keep for at least a week in the refrigerator, but ours don't last that long because we usually eat it up so fast! It is so delicious,  I hope you enjoy it!  Note; make sure all vegetables are washed thoroughly, before using.     


3 Large Fresh Tomatoes; (preferably from the garden or farmer's market) stem removed, chopped fine. (leave peel on tomatoes)

1 Large Green Bell Pepper; remove seeds & stem and chopped fine

1 Medium Vidalia (or sweet) Onion, peeled, and chopped fine

1/2  Bunch Fresh Cilantro; remove stems, use leaves only

2 teaspoons, Lemon Pepper

1 teaspoon salt; preferably Kosher or Sea Salt

1 teaspoon Garlic Powder

Juice of one Lime

1 -2 drops hot sauce, or pepper sauce  *optional

1. Place tomatoes, green pepper and onion in a large bowl. Sprinkle with spices, add hot sauce, drizzle lime juice evenly over vegetables, stir to mix well.

2. Place cilantro leaves in a large measuring cup. Using kitchen shears, chop cilantro, using quick cutting motions, inside the cup. You can also chop the cilantro very fine, or use a food chopper, but to me this is the easiest way. After chopping, the amount will be reduced to about 1/2 cup minced cilantro. (if you do not like that much cilantro, you can reduce the amount by half, but my family loves it!)

3. Stir well, to blend all ingredients; cover and refrigerate a few hours or overnight for flavors to meld. Serve with tortilla chips.

Yield: Makes about 4 1/2 to 5 cups Salsa

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Low Country Shrimp and Rice

Hey y'all!

This recipe is one I created one day when I was craving some fresh shrimp. It's so great living here on the coast, where I am blessed to be able to get really fresh, locally caught, seafood. But, you can also substitute shrimp from your local supermarket as well if you need to. I buy them deheaded, with the shells still on. (more about that later) It is fairly easy, and it is so delicious. Give it a try, I'm sure you will enjoy it!


1 1/2 lbs fresh shrimp; (25-30 count per lb.) deheaded, shells still on
5 cups water
2 cups regular, long grain white rice
1 tsp Old Bay Seasoning
1 tsp. Lemon pepper
1 Tbs. vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt

3 Tbs. olive oil
1 small vidaila onion, chopped
1 medium Green bell pepper, chopped
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
2 tsp. Lemon pepper
1 1/2 tsp, Garlic powder
1 tsp. Old Bay Seasoning
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 (13 1/2 oz pkg.) Smoked Sausage, sliced into 1 " pieces
1 (14 1/2 oz can, Rotel, diced tomatoes

  1. Rinse shrimp in cold water, place shrimp in a bowl, reserving shells.

  1. Place shells in large saucepan with the five cups water. Bring water to a boil; reduce heat, & simmer for five minutes.
  2. Remove shells from water, throw shells away, but reserve the water. Measure 4 cups of water that shrimp shells were cooked in. If needed, add a little more water to bring it to 4 cups. Place water back in saucepan, add the 1 tsp. Old Bay Seasoning, 1 tsp. Lemon Pepper, 1 Tbs. vegetable oil, and 1/2 tsp. salt. Bring water with seasonings, to a boil. Add rice, cover and cook for twenty minutes. Remove lid, fluff rice with fork, recover rice and set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, while rice is cooking, in a large skillet, over medium heat, saute onion, & green and red peppers. Add smoked sausage,  shrimp, and remaining seasonings. Cook about 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally, till shrimp is no longer transparent.  Add Rotel tomatoes. Cook for an additional 1-2 minutes.
  4. Serve over rice in large bowl or platter.
  5. Yields 4-6 servings


Monday, May 28, 2012

Black Bean and Corn Salad

Hey y'all!

This recipe was inspired by a salad I once enjoyed at a Ladies Luncheon at our church. They served it with tortilla chips, and I enjoyed it so much that I came home and recreated it myself.

Not only is the recipe quick, easy, delicious, and very versatile. Of course you can simply serve it with tortilla chips, but you can also serve it as a party appetizer by scooping some into a clear shot glass and garnishing it with a grilled or boiled shrimp. You can also turn it into an entree by placing it on top of a plate of shredded lettuce and then placing pieces of grilled chicken breast atop that. it's pretty to also garnish it with a wedge of fresh lime. Fiesta time!

I hope you enjoy it as much as my family and friends do.........   Lulabellle

Black Bean and Corn Salad

1 1lb. bag, frozen whole kernel corn, thawed

1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 green bell pepper, chopped fine

1/2 red bell pepper, chopped fine

1/2 medium sweet vidalia or red onion, chopped fine

4 tbls. olive oil

Juice of one lime, (plus an additional lime for garnish * optional )

1/2 tsp. salt

1 1/2 tsp. lemon pepper

2 tbls. fresh cilantro, chopped very fine

2 tbls. fresh parsley, chopped very fine

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Stir well to mix. Cover and refrigerate overnight to allow flavors to blend.

yields about 12 -18 appetizer servings or 6 entree/ salad servings

Easy Peasy Pickles

OK y'all; let me first explain these pickles have absolutely nothing to do with peas. LOL! It is just a term I am using to let you know how simple these pickles are to make. My daughter from Missouri first told me about them and I couldn't believe how easy the are. Yep, I am originally from the show me state, so I had to see it, to believe it, and they made a believer out of me.

How simple? Just two ingredients. Cucumbers and leftover jarred pickle juice.

Here is what you do. The next time you eat up all your (dill/ kosher/sour/ ) pickles, save the juice in the jar and keep the lid on it and refrigerate it. Preferably, get some fresh cucumbers from the local farmer's market or produce stand (I haven't tried cucumbers from a regular grocery store, but I'm sure they would work too, however, the fresher ones are better)

I use a 24 oz pickle jar, and two fairly good size cucumbers. I pour half of the juice into a glass and reserve it. Next stand up cucumbers along side of jar to measure how much to cut off the end of each. The goal is to have the height of the cucumbers match the height of the jar. Cut each cucumber into spears and pack tightly into jar of juice. Pour remaining juice over cucumbers, to fill to the the brim. Save any remaining juice in a jar and refrigerate for another jar of pickles.

Next, simply refrigerate pickles and let them cure for at least one week, however, they do get better the longer they cure (if you can wait longer!)

Viola! you now have delicious pickles similar in taste to Clausens. I used a spicy pickle juice the first time and they were sooo good! You can also enhance them by adding fresh dill, garlic cloves, and or small hot peppers and a little salt if you so desire. 

I am now experimenting with using fresh green tomatoes (instead of cucumbers) and plan to try fresh okra as well. Will keep you posted on the results.

So there you have it. Easy, peasy, pickles. Enjoy!!!

Rise & Shine Muffins

Hey Y'all!

This recipe is one I created for a friend who was coming to visit me. Now I have a confession to make: Even though I probably have over a hundred cook books ( no kidding!) I love to just look in the fridge, see what I have and just get crazy and start creating. LOL!

When I was a child, I would watch my mother and grandmother cook like this and was amazed at their cooking~ no recipes, just a little bit of this and a little bit of that & I longed to be able to do the same.

 I've been cooking since I was ten years old, but actually started out cooking by following recipes. As I became more confident, I would change the recipes up a bit, tweaking it and finally making them my own. The more I experimented, the more confident I became. It is much easier to do this with with regular cooking, however not so much with baking, because baking is more of a science, and the ingredient proportions need to be precise in order for the recipe to turn out just right. So, it surprises even me when I can just start combining ingredients to create a baked product.

This recipe is easy and will keep fresh for several days in a sealed Tupperware container in the refrigerator, then you can reheat them for 7-10 seconds in the microwave. They are also delicious spread with a little softened cream cheese on top. Yum Yum!

I hope you enjoy them!........ Lulabelle

Rise and Shine Muffins

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups regular flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1  1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 cup peeled, grated carrots
1 granny smith apple cored; grated with peel left on
3/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 shredded coconut

1 cup powedered sugar, *** for tops of muffins after baking

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

1. In large mixing bowl, combine granulated sugar, eggs, & oil. Beat at low speed 2 minutes to blend well.

2. In separate bowl, combine all dry ingredients; stir well with fork.

3. Add dry ingredients to oil, eggs & sugar and beat for two minutes to blend.

4. Add remaining ingredients, and beat just till blended.

5. Place 18 paper cupcake liners in regular sized muffin pans.

6. Fill each cup 3/4 with batter. Bake for 20 -22 minutes till done, or till a         toothpick inserted in the center of muffins comes out clean.

Top with sifted powdered sugar

Yield 18 muffins

*** Tip: If you have a food processor, you can put the cored apple cut into wedges along with a cup of carrot chunks into the processor and pulse just till they are shredded. however, do not do this with the walnuts; they need to be larger pieces.