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Monday, May 28, 2012

Anytime Quiche

As with just about all my favorite dishes, this quiche has slowly changed over the years.  I found an awesome recipe for perfect quiche and then as years went by, I made it my own.
  This quiche has a basic foolproof body and all the extra can be changed and individualized.   Kinda dress it up or dress it down:) 
 Have it for breakfast, lunch and we have even had it for dinner:)  Oh yeah, it's perfect for bunch.
 So its anytime quiche!


  • 2 pie crusts
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 oz sliced mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 cup broccoli florets, bite size pieces
  • 8 slices of bacon, cooked crisp
  • 1 1/2 cups grated Monterrey jack cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups grated Swiss cheese
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
2. Bake crust for 8 minutes, remove and let cool on wire rack.
3. While crusts are cooking, fry bacon until crisp and chop into about 1/2 inch pieces.
4. Melt butter in large skillet and add mushrooms, raise temperature to med high heat to brown mushrooms. Because of the juice emitted from mushrooms during cooking, mushrooms have a tendency to just boil and become rubbery and tough. Temperature has to be high to brown them, just add 1 to 2 tablespoons of olive oil to help bring the butter up to higher temperature without burning.
5. Add broccoli at about the same time and saute or stir fry until done.
6. Divide your vegetable mixture between the two pie crusts, laying the veggies on the bottom of each pie shell, then add the bacon pieces to each pie.
7. Top with the cheeses
8. Beat eggs in a medium bowl, add half and half, basil, oregano and salt and pepper to taste.
9. Pour the egg mixture into each pie, equally. This is easier if the pies are placed on the oven rack prior to pouring and then just slide the rack with the pies into the oven.
10. Make a "tent" with enough aluminum foil to cover both pies and bake for 15 minutes at 425 degrees F then turn the oven to 325 degrees F and bake for another 15-20 minutes.
11. Remove foil and cook 1-2 minutes until golden brown and knife inserted in center comes out clean.
12. Let cool on wire rack prior to serving.
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Monday, May 21, 2012

Cedar Planked Pork Loin

I have been wishing to make a Cedar Planked Pork Loin for a couple years now but have not been brave enough to try it.
  I love the Cedar Planked Salmon and I  would always read and reread the recipe for  Cedar Planked Pork Loin and then put it away and grab the salmon.
  I finally dived in and bought a couple of nice pork loins, soaked my cedar planks and lit the grill.  
Oh my gosh,  it was totally  worth the wait!  The pork loin came out perfectly cooked  with just a touch of smoke flavor.  I served it with my awesome mango salsa, couscous and grilled asparagus. 
 Of course I timed the experiment when we were with family and  I was concerned at first.   What was I thinking, trying something new with no safety net and a hungry crowd.
 But not to worry and to quote my Fellow, " 

You nailed it, babe!""
Whooo Hooo!!

Cedar Planked Pork Loin

1-2 1/2 lb Pork Loin
1/2 cup Teriyaki Sauce
1 untreated cedar plank
olive oil

Start by soaking the cedar plank overnight.  Completely submerge the cedar plank in water, place a weight (heavy can) on top to keep it submerged.   Place the pork loin in a gallon size plastic bag and pour in the teriyaki sauce.  Place in fridge to marinade at least 4 hours.

 Heat outside grill to med heat.  Remove plank from water and brush  a small amount of olive oil on one side of the plank.  Place meat on oiled side of the plank and carefully place both on grill and close the lid.  I kept a close watch on the pork using a spray bottle of water to spray down any flare ups which did indeed happen several times.  Close lid and cook for about 1 hour until internal temperature reaches 150 degrees F.   Remove from grill, cover and let rest for 10-15 minutes. Throw away the cedar plank.
 Serve with Mango Salsa:)

Mango Salsa

1 Mango, diced
1/4 cup red onion. chopped
1 jalapeno, chopped (I used 2)
1/4 cup red bell pepper
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
salt to taste

Combine all ingredients, cover and chill in fridge.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Baja Fish Tacos

During my years living in Southern California, I met and fell in love with fish tacos.   
When I was first introduced to fish tacos, I was skeptical and frankly scared to even try them. 
 But when several deputies that I worked with returned from fishing in the Sea of Cortez in Mexico and hosted a fish fry featuring fish tacos, I tried them.  
They were wonderful!  
 Breaded fish chunks, creamy dressing, cool crunchy cabbage and spicy pico de gallo all folded into a soft warm corn tortilla.   
Being from West Texas, I had not had much exposure to seafood prior to our transfer to California.  But  this dish soon became one of my favorites and always reminds me of our years in Southern California.

 Good food=Good memories!

Baja Fish Tacos

  • 1 1/2lbs fresh sea bass, cod or halibut , cut in 1 inch cubes
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 12 fresh corn tortillas
  • 1 cup green cabbage,shredded
  • 1 cup red cabbage, shredded
  • 1 med onion, minced
  • olive oil
For the Creamy Chipotle Dressing
  • 3/4 cup Ranch Dressing
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 chipotle, diced with 1 teaspoon sauce
For the Pico
  • 2 tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 2 jalapeƱos, diced
  • 1 serrano chile seeded and diced
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • 4 green onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro
  • juice of two limes
  • salt to taste

1. Prepare the chipotle dressing (below) and the pico de gallo (below) , refrigerate until ready to serve.
2. Mix the cabbages and onion, set aside.
3. Combine flour, salt and pepper in a shallow bowl, dredge fish cubes in flour mixture until well coated.
4. Heat 2 to 3 inches of oil in a skillet until temperature reaches 350 F. degrees. 5. Gently drop fish chucks in hot oil and fry 2-3 minutes until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.
6. Heat corn tortillas. Fold the fish into the warmed tortilla, add some of the cabbage mixture, add a couple spoonfuls of chipotle dressing and top with pico de gallo to taste:)

Chipotle Creamy Dressing
1. In a small dish mix the ranch dressing, sour cream and the diced chipotle well, set aside
Pico de Gallo
1. In a medium bowl mix the tomatoes, jalapeƱos, Serrano chile and both onions. Season with fresh cilantro, juice of the limes and salt to taste. Set aside
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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Garlic Mashed Potatoes

We make these awesome Garlic Mashed Potatoes for Thanksgiving, Christmas and sometimes Easter.  I usually prepare them ahead of time, then pop them in the oven just before we eat.  It's an easy way to prevent that last minute rush and your potatoes always arrive on the table hot and steamy.  These Garlic Mashed Potatoes  are so creamy, cheesy and have a garlic flavor that is out of this world.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes

  • 6 Med Potatoes (2 lbs, 9 oz) peeled and cubed
  • 1 whole garlic bulb
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 cup shredded Fontina Cheese
  • 2 tablespoons ( 1/4 stick of butter)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of white pepper
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 2 quart casserole dish. Place the cubed potatoes in 2 quart pot, cover with water and boil potatoes until done.
2. Meanwhile cut a 8" square piece of foil. Rinse garlic bulb and pat dry, slice off just the very top of the bulb. Place garlic on foil, pour 1 tbsp of olive oil on top of the cut garlic bulb Bring all four corners up over bulb and twist to make closed packet. Place in oven and bake for 30-40 minutes until garlic is soft.
3. Carefully remove garlic bulb and allow to cool, save oil. As soon as garlic is cool, carefully remove the cooked garlic from the skins and mash in a small bowl.
4. As soon as the potatoes are done, drain and place in a large mixing bowl. Add the garlic paste, olive oil, butter, milk, cream, cheeses, salt and pepper. Beat until creamy. Add more milk if needed.
5. Place potato mixture in the buttered casserole dish. (At this time it can be cooled, covered and refrigerated for up to 8 hours but be sure to remember to remove potatoes from fridge and bring to room temperature about an hour prior to baking).
6. Bake 15-20 minutes, longer if needed until hot throughout and slightly browned. Drop squares of button on top
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