Southern Baked Bean and Ground Beef Casserole

Southern Baked Bean and Ground Beef Casserole is another iconic Southern covered dish our family loves to share at family functions, Church Potlucks, picnics and even on some of the spring and summer Holiday gatherings.

This Casserole is a total cinch to make; combining VanCamp’s pork and beans, crisp bacon, lean ground beef, sweet red bell peppers, Jalapeno peppers, sweet onions, BBQ sauce, spicy brown mustard, and brown sugar.

If you have ever resided or visited the South and you’ve been to any gatherings at all where the community shares a covered dish aka casserole, then chances are you have tried a variation of Southern Baked Bean and Ground Beef Casserole. If not you are missing out on one of the best tasting Southern casseroles.What are you waiting for?

Let me just tell you this recipe is so darn good you will even find this being served at the homes of Trisha Yearwood,  Paula Dean, and Ree Drummond, just to name a few who know a good Southern covered dish at family gatherings. Now if one of y’all tell me you have no clue who these lovely women are; I am just gonna cry myself to sleep tonight. Continue reading

Lemony Tarragon Chicken Salad

Lemony Tarragon Chicken Salad it has a clean fresh taste, with a positive upside; Lemony Tarragon Chicken Salad is so easy to make in a matter of minutes; combining  diced chicken breast meat, freshly roasted chopped red peppers, crisp green celery, chives, mayonnaise, freshly squeezed Florida lemon juice, garden fresh Mexican tarragon, a little kosher salt and freshly ground peppercorns.

I know y’all love a good recipe for Chicken Salad and this Lemony Tarragon Chicken Salad is just what the doctor ordered to chase the winter blues away. Besides its citrus season in The Sunshine State and frankly,  it’s the perfect time to bring out the non-mama-drama recipes that y’all love and crave.

Have you ever got just got so tired of eating all those non-stop handy-me-down casseroles you just want something yummilicious and simple to make for lunch or even dinner? Don’t get me wrong, I know y’all love those winter casseroles; but how many times can we eat that same Mississippi Pot Roast or John Wayne Casserole from Pinterest?

Lemony Tarragon Chicken Salad it has a clean fresh taste, with a positive upside; Lemony Tarragon Chicken Salad is so easy to make in a matter of minutes; combining diced chicken breast meat, freshly roasted chopped red peppers, crisp green celery, chives, mayonnaise, freshly squeezed Florida lemon juice, garden fresh Mexican tarragon, a little kosher salt and freshly ground peppercorns.Speaking of that Mississippi Pot Roast recipe, did you notice now some people are classing up the name a bit and calling it, “The Pepperoncini Pot Roast?” Call it what you will, it’s the same darn Pot Roast with Italian Dressing VS Ranch Dressing. Funny thing is my mama lives right in Olive branch, Mississippi, and had no clue about Mississippi’s glorious Pot Roast on Pinterest until a few years back; and then I even jumped on the bandwagon making it myself. Continue reading

Green Goddess Dressing

Green Goddess Dressing is a beautiful minty colored green blast from the past made with plain Greek yogurt, buttermilk, Duke’s mayo, chervil, chives, anchovy, tarragon, lemon juice, and freshly ground pepper. It’s perfect for your Springtime freshly made salads.

It has been said in the past that Green Goddess Dressing’s origin points to the Palace Hotel in San Francisco in 1923 when the hotel’s executive chef Philip Roemer wanted something to pay tribute to actor George Arliss and his hit play, The Green Goddess. He then concocted this dressing, which, like the play, became a hit.

I have to admit I am an avid collector of anything vintage, including recipes.This dressing is right up my alley and definitely a delicious blast from the past on a wonderful crisp and cool salad. I adore the natural minty tinted color as well as the flavor of this dressing.

Green goddess dressing

I bet a few of you are wondering a few things…

What is Chervil? : Chervil, aka French parsley, is a delicate annual herb related to parsley.It is commonly used to season mild-flavored dishes and is a constituent of the French herb mixture fines herbs. Continue reading

Dill Pickle Dip

Mention Dill Pickle Dip to me and I will proclaim to you, it to be, What dreams are made of on a warm spring day here in Mississippi. It’s that deliciously simple to make dip we love to serve at family shindigs and church potlucks. I mean just the ingredient list alone gives me endless smiles thinking about it;  cream cheese, crunchy baby dill pickles, red onions,  fresh dill weed, minced garlic, and a subtle hint of Cajun Spice to bring it together.

Dill pickle dip reminds me of those delicious little ham, cream cheese, and dill pickle pinwheel sandwiches we devoured in the 80’s and 90’s as children. It’s the perfect dip to serve with crunchy kettle chips, soft pita bread, or your favorite crackers. Trust me if you love dill pickles you are surely going to swoon over this Dill Pickle Dip recipe.

Here in the South, we don’t wait for Game Days or the Christmas holidays to break out our favorite dips and spreads; those recipes are an all year around affair. We love to serve them at our gatherings and watch them disappear off the table like nobody’s business. In fact, we wait in anticipation to see how fast they vanish.

I like using those crunchy baby dill pickles in my recipe for Dill Pickle Dip, they just seem to have that wonderful crunchy texture and the perfect amount of dill pickle flavor. I always save about 5-6 of them that I thinly slice and use as a garnish for the top of the Dill Pickle Dip. Just gives it that fancy schmancy look we all love to see. Continue reading

Cowboy Caviar {Black-eyed Pea Salsa} aka Texas Caviar

Cowboy Caviar {black-eyed Pea Salsa} aka Texas Caviar is the delicious Southern cousin of Mexican Black Bean Salsa made with black-eyed peas, sweet corn, diced red plum tomatoes, chopped spicy jalapeño peppers, crisp celery, diced cucumber, red onions, finely sliced green onion, chopped fresh cilantro, and served with crunchy tortilla chips.

Southerners love their black-eyed peas, and the state of Texas is the birthplace of Cowboy Caviar {Black-eyed Pea Salsa} aka Texas Caviar. Cowboy Caviar aka Texas Caviar was created in the lovely state of Texas around 1940, by Ms. Helen Corbitt, the director of the food service for the Zodiac Room at Neiman Marcus in Dallas, Texas. Here’s the twist y’all, Ms. Helen Corbitt was actually a native of New York, not Texas.

I don’t know about y’all but I can surely forgive Ms. Corbitt for not being a native Southerner, since she created one of my favorite Southern iconic appetizers; bless her little heart, if it weren’t for her we might not have ever thought of this amazing concoction made from black-eyed peas on our own. So a big thank you is going out to that lovely fiery redheaded Northern gal.

Ms. Helen Corbitt was the notoriously famous for being the director of the food service at the Zodiac Room, in the Neiman Marcus in Dallas, Texas. She first served her well-known Black-eyed Pea Salsa on New Year’s Eve at the Houston Country Club. Ms. Corbitt, would later also serve the Black-eyed Pea Salsa at the famous Driskill Hotel in Austin, Texas, where then dubbed by its nickname, “Texas caviar,” as a humorous poke at real caviar, an expensive hors d’oeuvre of salt-cured fish roe. Continue reading

Purple Potato Salad Recipe

This vibrant looking Purple Potato Salad is Easy to make and deliciously gorgeous to look at on the dinner table; made from a spectacular tasting colorful medley of small purple potatoes, new potatoes, small red potatoes, crunchy baby dill pickles, crisp celery, red salad onions, sliced carrots, and garden fresh herbs.

It’s Springtime and the colorful veggies are popping up in every market here on the Memphis border, that means there’s a fresh bag of those brilliantly purple colored potatoes we all love and adore in stores here as we speak. I don’t know about you, but there’s something to be said for a lovely springtime Purple Potato Salad Recipe that you can serve with your favorite dinner items.

Awhile back my friend Francesca invited me over to dinner and made her mom’s version of Purple Potato Salad and by the way, it was delicious. Shortly after that decided I wanted to do my version to shall with all of you while purple potatoes were in season.

If you’re one of our diehard hardcore potato lovers but suddenly cut down on eating potatoes due to their bad reputation of being high in carbs/starches and causing weight gain, you may be in luck. Recent studies show it could be the potato you choose in addition to how the potato is prepared or cooked that make the difference. Instead, why not opt for some of these colorful purple potatoes? Continue reading

Lemony Italian Pasta Salad

Lemony Italian Pasta Salad is a quintessential salad recipe to have this spring combining Rigatoni pasta noodles, pepperoni, ham, grape tomatoes, red onions, quality black olives, green olives, sliced sweet peppers, Romano cheese, and a delicious homemade lemony Italian Salad Dressing.

Every Italian-American family has their own version of pasta salad, there really is no specific recipe for  a traditional Pasta Salad, only many variations, depending on on-hand ingredients in each  Italian-American household

One of the most important ingredients is the pasta noodles, I can not stress enough to you; cook pasta until it is al dente, firm to the teeth yet tender. Many Americans cook pasta until it is too soft, a minute or two less of cooking time then the directions on a package will give you authentic Italian pasta.

Lemony Italian Pasta SaladAnother key to making perfect pasta is to use a large cooking pot, better yet a pasta pot if you have one and plenty of salted water; this will stop the pasta from sticking to the bottom or each other and will also ensure every inch of pasta will be cooked through perfectly. Continue reading