My version of BAM!

Name my Peas

Peas–not for breakfast anymore! (Photo credit: doolloop)

Yes, I know it is Monday and not Recipe day but on Saturday night I went to a dinner party and this was one of the side dishes and I just loved it, so I asked the hostess with the mostest to send it to me.

 Now be forewarned—it has more than the five requisite ingredients that I usually judge a recipe by ~ but salt, sugar, and pepper are not too exotic, nor are onions and peppers and peas. And who doesn’t love mayo and sour cream? Seriously, this is one good salad, and by adding the nuts you have then ramped it up a bit—adding the Emeril BAM! factor, along with the bacon. (Everything tastes better with bacon.)

 So, without further ado, here is the recipe:

Cold Pea Salad

4 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled

3/4 cup sour cream

1/8 cup mayonnaise

1 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt 

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 bag (20 oz.) of frozen sweet peas thawed and dried off

1/2 cup diced celery

1/3 cup of diced red onion or green onions

1/4 cup of diced green, red or yellow pepper

1/2 cup of cashews or pecan or walnut halves roughly broken


Cook the bacon, crumble and set aside.

Beat the sour cream with the mayonnaise to loosen it, adding the sugar, salt and pepper; set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl, add the peas, celery, onions and peppers.

Add the sour cream mixture, toss, cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Just before serving, toss in the nuts.

Make this and tell me I am a genius for having shared it!

Published in: on July 8, 2013 at 6:11 pm  Comments (26)  
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~ Making Bliss from the Unblissful ~

English: Swiss chard (Beta vulgaris) with vari...

English: Swiss chard (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This next recipe is for those who do not eat meat, but still eat eggs and cheese. Yes, I actually did make this recipe once. It is so unlike me, but we had an attack of Swiss chard in our little family garden, so it was in response to the abundance of green stuff that I actually turned the oven on.

Swiss chard is really good for you. Having said that, I have to admit that it is not my favourite leafy green, but it is nicely disguised in this recipe.

So, without further ado (drum roll please) here is some Swiss Chard Bliss (isn’t it amazing how I can work that word into anything?):

Baked Swiss Chard

1 lb. Swiss chard

¼ cup of butter (I probably used Becel, as that is what I usually have on hand unless it is a holiday)

1 large onion, sliced

2 eggs

Salt and pepper (to taste)

¾ cup grated cheddar cheese

Cut stems from chard, then cut into ¼ inch pieces and leaves into 1 inch strips. (Let’s be honest here, I threw out the stems). Melt butter, add onion and stems and cook until onion is transparent. Add leaves and cook for three minutes. Place in greased two quart baking dish.

Beat eggs; add salt and pepper, then pour over chard. Sprinkle with cheese and bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Serves 2-4  (Recipe taken from Country Cooking, by readers of Harrowsmith Magazine, attributed to Sandra Lintz ~ p. 163)

A wedge of Unpasteurised West Country Cheddar ...

Everything thing is better with cheese!  (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you are not a big fan of Swiss chard you will like this recipe. If you are a big fan of Swiss chard, you will love this recipe.

So what recipe do you use to turn a vegetable which is not on your bliss list, into something that resembles bliss? And do you agree that if you add cheese to something, it automatically becomes blissful?

Published in: on February 2, 2013 at 2:28 pm  Comments (39)  
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~ If It Is Saturday – It Must Be Recipe Day! ~

Vegetarians look away.

knife & fock

knife & fork (Photo credit: Elena Karelova)

I have told you about our “family cookbook”–the one that for about ten years all of my family contributed to at the behest of my sister Peggy. She covered binders in beautiful cloth for each of us, and only asked that every year at Christmas we contribute three recipes. Some years I was inspired–and some years I thought I was a comedian.

In 1995, it was a “comedian” year. So here was one of my contributions (I was young, I was stupid, I needed the money–okay this last one does not apply here):

*John K’s Favourite Meal #1

Ingredients: 1 very large steak, sufficiently marbled to cause a flare-up on the barbeque

A1 and Heinz steak sauce

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

1 bottle of HP steak sauce or Heinz 57 sauce



1. Tear off plastic wrapper.

2. Put on barbeque.

3. Cook on high. Burn. Turn over when flames reach three feet or neighbours call fire department.

4. Done when brown inside (better known as well done). If particularly hungry, done while still dripping in blood and transferred to microwave. Done when brown inside.

5. Put on platter. Enjoy with copious amounts of steak sauce and a Lot’s wife size amount of salt.

*John K’s Favourite Meal # 2

Ingredients: 1 very large slab of prime rib roast



Method: roast beef in oven until brown. Make gravy. Flood plate with said gravy over slabs of prime rib. Add enough salt to kill a horse and horse radish.

My cooking skills have since improved to the point where we no longer cook steaks or roasts until they are well done. We are sophisticated now–we like a little red in the meats that having a little red will not kill you, or send you to the emergency ward to have your stomach pumped.

My husband’s Neanderthal tastes have also been tamed. He now eats fruits and vegetables. His repertoire is not wide in these areas, and I am sure if left on his own, he would not need to supplement his meals with those pesky things like potatoes, rice, vegetables and salads. Good thing he has me–a mediocre cook who sometimes serves salad in a bowl, which he has to finish before he gets the rest of the meal.

Okay–here is one for the vegetarians, if you happened to read down this far:

Ingredients for making a fermented salsa. Cloc...

Ingredients for salsa. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


5 cups coarsely chopped tomatoes

3/4 cup of chopped spanish onion

3/4 cup of sweet red peppers

1 hot pepper

1 large clove garlic

5 1/2 oz can tomato paste

1/2 cup white vinegar

2 tablespoons white sugar

2 tablespoons lime juice

1 1/2 teaspoons pickling salt

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp oregano

Cook until thick.

Note: We also add hot sauce and extra hot peppers for more spice.

This was a recipe included in the Family Cookbook and submitted by Mark and Chrissie who are my nephew and niece by marriage. I have never made it as it has more than five ingredients–but I am positive it is good–because anything I have ever eaten at their house has been exceptional. Unfortunately, when I get a hankering for salsa, I buy it. The medium spicy. Unless Mark and Chrissie give me jar of theirs. Then I am in salsa heaven.

*my husband

Do any of you have stories to tell about your days before you became gourmet cooks?

Published in: on November 17, 2012 at 3:26 pm  Comments (45)  
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Stroke of Genuis ~ Lost to the Cosmos

“Always carry a notebook. And I mean always. The short-term memory only retains information for three minutes; unless it is committed to paper you can lose an idea forever.”  ~ Will Self, novelist


idea (Photo credit: Tony Dowler)

The fact that our short-term memory can only retain information for three minutes explains a lot. Sometimes this can be a good thing, as there are things we would rather not even retain for three minutes. But how about those other things—those things that we want to remember?

On the rare occasion when I come up with a good idea, I am sure it is so good that I will remember it forever—no need to write it down. Inevitably, I am left with later trying to piece together just what that good idea was. And if I cannot find it in my short-term memory, then it probably got filed in that vast vacuüm (at least in my brain) called long-term memory, never to be excavated at will.

Why do we never get good ideas at convenient times? Why is it when we are weeding the garden (okay, this is just an example—and yes, I have weeded my garden—just not lately)or burning—err….I mean cooking dinner, or hiking in the Appalachians? (No, I have never hiked in the Appalachians—I am not even sure people do hike in the Appalachians. And second: No, I have not hiked all that often—but I am using my imagination here.)

Amy Peters, in her book, “The Writer’s Devotional”, says that: “Ideas can—and do—surface at any time, and sometimes at the most inopportune moments. Chopping onions when the next great thought arrives? Put down your knife, pick up a pen, and jot it down. A stroke of brilliance arrives while you are en route to the store? When you stop at a red light or pull into a parking lot, take a moment to write it down.”

I am not sure what world Ms. Peters is living in, but if I am chopping an onion, I am probably doing it to create one of my wonderful gastronomically and palate pleasing creations, and could not possibly stop the artistry to write down an idea! And anyway, my eyes will be streaming because I did not take one of those precautions you are told to take when chopping an onion, so I would not be able to locate a pad and pen anyway because my eyes will be gushing onion tears!

A stroke of brilliance on the way to the grocery store? Stop and write it down? I am lucky to have remembered the list I took painstaking time to create and probably left at home on the dining room table (and thus will forget something basic like eggs and have to make a trip back to the store, and on the way to the eggs go by the bakery and pick up something verboten that I bypassed heroically on the first trip.)

The other advice Ms. Peters gives is to keep a notebook by the side of the bed, and “When you wake in the morning, record any thoughts that may have come to you in your dreams. Many writers find inspiration from their dreams.” Those who find inspiration from their dreams do not have the kind of dreams I have. When I wake up from a dream, which is usually confusing to start with, I am generally in no mood to write it down.

My dreams consist of three themes: not being able to find my geography lab in Windsor Hall at the university I attended almost four decades ago (I think I found it three times the whole semester of first year); believing I am awake while I am dreaming and wondering if I could do things in this dream that I would not dare do in real life, but not being convinced totally that I am dreaming; or having some kind of nightmare—and who wants to remember that?

Having said all that, I do carry a notebook with me almost all the time. But I do not use it to write down random thoughts. Whenever I have done that in the past, I go back to the notebook, find the supposedly “good idea” and cannot make heads nor tails of it. In what I thought was a stroke of genius, like “the red dog never dies” or “why can birds sit on electrical wires and not keel over”, I find the stroke of genius not so brilliant.

So, I am left with all those “good ideas” swirling around, lost in the cosmos. And you are left to read this. Sorry.

Published in: on August 6, 2012 at 1:34 pm  Comments (58)  
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