Monthly Archives: June 2009

Nothing says ‘July 4th Celebration’ like HOMEMADE ICE CREAM

Alzheimers-MakingIceCreamDo you remember sitting on top of the hand crank ice cream maker?  Homemade ice cream is a delicious treat on a hot, summer day. We like to make homemade ice cream for our July 4th celebration – it’s a family tradition. 

Below are three ice cream recipes that my family has enjoyed for years. All of these ice cream recipes are no-cook meaning you don’t have to pre-cook the ingredients prior to freezing. For best results, use name brand ingredients.

No-Cook Vanilla Ice Cream
5 eggs beaten for 10 minutes
1 cup sugar
1 can Eagle brand milk
1 can Carnation evaporated milk
2 pints whipping cream
2 Tablespoons Vanilla extract
fill container with whole milk
Freeze mixture in ice cream freezer according to the unit’s instructions.

Chocolate Ice Cream*
Makes 4 quarts
16 ounces cool whip
1 can Eagle brand milk
1/2 gallon Nestle Chocolate Milk – Use the name brand…it makes a difference.
*If you want to make Butterfinger Ice Cream, add 4 Butterfinger candy bars, crunched at this time.
Freeze mixture in ice cream freezer according to the unit’s instructions.

Frozen Passion Ice Cream
1 64 ounce Shasta Strawberry Drink
2 cans Eagle brand milk
1 package frozen strawberries
Freeze mixture in ice cream freezer according to the unit’s instructions. You may need to transfer this ice cream to a container to finish freezing it. Delicious!


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Filed under Celebration, Dessert, Holiday, Spring, Summer

Patti’s Secret Herb Mix

Detox-HerbsDo you have a special herb mix to add that ‘SOMETHING EXTRA’ to your favorite dish?  This herb mix is fantastic and I use it on everything – so much better for you.

Use 1 teaspoon of this herb mix with good olive oil and dip hot, crusty bread in it or sprinkle a little along with the Parmesan cheese on your cheese tortellini.  I also use it in my pasta salads instead of salt.  It’s great on homemade pizza or added to grilled chicken or beef. 

Store mixture in an airtight container in the refrigerator.  You can chop herbs finely or use a food processor to create a less coarse mixture.  If you want the recipe for a larger quantity, just let me know.

1 tablespoon crushed red pepper

1 tablespoot freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon dried oregano (or 3 tablespoons fresh)

1 tablespoon dried rosemary (or 3 tablespoons fresh)

1 tablespoon dried basil (or 3 tablespoons fresh)

1 tablespoon dried parsley (or 3 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley)

1 tablespoon garlic powder

1 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic (same amount for fresh – you don’t increase the amount of fresh garlic)

1 teaspoon sea salt


Filed under Beef, Cheese, Chicken, Dip / Spread / Sauce / Seasoning, Fish / Seafood, Pasta, Pork

Fried Mac and Cheese Balls

TGIF_Mac&CheeseFried mac and cheese balls are kind of the craze right now.  If you like macaroni and cheese, you will love this recipe.  Just be sure not to glance at the nutritional impact of this offering.  One piece of advice, make the balls smaller, rather than larger-golf ball size.  Use small elbow macaroni.  Also anytime you use milk in a recipe, you should grate a small amount of fresh nutmeg into the mixture.  It will make a huge difference – just a touch.

1 pound small elbow macaroni

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 cups milk

1 1/2 pound grated Cheddar cheese

salt and pepper

fresh grated nutmeg

2 large eggs

3 cups seasoned bread crumbs – or you can make your own

Cook the macaroni according to package instructions.  Drain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.  Drain again and set aside.

In the same pan you cooked the pasta, add butter and flour and stir with a whisk for about 2 minutes – like a blond roux.  Gradually add milk, whisking to blend.  Cook about 2 minutes until thickened.  Remove from heat, add nutmeg and cheese.  Stir until cheese is melted.  Add salt and pepper. 

Fold the cheese sauce into the macaroni.  Pour the mac and cheese into a shallow pan and refrigerate until cold, at least 2 hours.  Shape the cold mac and cheese into small meatball sized balls and place on waxed paper tray.  Freeze the balls overnight.

Beat the eggs and 2 tablespoons milk to form an egg wash.  Remove the mac and cheese balls from the freezer.  Dip the frozen balls into the egg wash and then into the bread crumbs.  Put the balls back into the freezer until you are ready to fry.

Heat the oil in a deep fryer to 350 degrees.  Fry the mac and cheese balls until golden brown – approx 5 minutes.  Only fry a few at a time so the oil won’t cool down too much.  Drain on paper towels.

Serve with your favorite marinara sauce or a horseradish mustard sauce (recipe follows).  Feel free to play with the concept, using more or less horseradish, eliminate the sour cream for a spicier sauce, or using a sweet and spicy mustard in place of the Dijon.


2 tablespoons prepared horseradish

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1/4 cup buttermilk

1 tablespoon sour cream

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon chopped rosemary or basil

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Filed under Cheese, Pasta

Caramelized Onion Dip

When I read this recipe I immediately had to make it.  It is fantastic.  Homemade onion dip!  Thank you Chow for sharing this recipe.  See more recipes at:

oniondip290The addition of goat cheese mimics the zip of Lipton’s famous onion soup mix.
By Kate Ramos
We’ve updated classic onion dip by swapping the pack of dehydrated Lipton soup mix for real caramelized onions and goat cheese—but the sweet, salty, tangy flavors you remember are all there. Reminisce with a bag of potato chips.
Game plan: The dip can be made up to 2 days in advance and refrigerated in a covered container; stir briefly before serving.
This recipe was featured as part of our summer dips story.
Total Time: 25 mins, plus chilling time
Active Time: 25 mins
Makes: 2 cups (6 to 8 servings)

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, medium dice (about 2 cups)
1 medium garlic clove, finely chopped
1 cup sour cream
4 ounces fresh chèvre (goat cheese)
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh chives
Heat oil in a medium frying pan over medium-low heat. When it shimmers, add onion and garlic, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are caramelized and brown, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
Combine sour cream, chèvre, and chives in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment, add onion mixture, and pulse until combined, about 10 pulses. Adjust seasoning with salt and freshly ground black pepper and pulse a few more times to mix in seasoning.
Transfer to a serving bowl, cover, and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour. Serve with potato chips or crudités.


Illustration by Christoph Niemann

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Filed under Autumn, Celebration, Cheese, Dip / Spread / Sauce / Seasoning, Spring, Summer, Winter

Pim(i)mento Cheese

pimento cheeseNothing says summer like a homemade pimento cheese sandwich.  My friend Ashley Dacus, who is a Realtor Sales Associate with Henry Turley Realtors – All About Downtown Memphis, shared the perfect recipe for the absolute perfect pimento cheese.  She got the recipe from Southern Living Comfort Food cookbook – EVERYTHING in it is marvelous!

3/4 c mayonnaise
1 4 oz jar diced pimiento, drained
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
1 tsp finely grated onion
1/4 tsp ground red pepper
1 8 oz block extra-sharp cheddar, finely shredded
1 8 oz block sharp cheddar, shredded
2 medium jalapeno peppers, seeded and minced

Mix it up. Serve it up. Enjoy the compliments.


Filed under Cheese, Dip / Spread / Sauce / Seasoning, Spring, Summer

Smoked Brisket Nachos

smoked brisket nachosAs an empty nester, I find it more difficult to cook for 2 than I do a full house.  I used smoked brisket for this recipe, but you could use chicken or shrimp too. I usually smoke 2 briskets at a time so I always have some on hand . . . it freezes so well.


The ONLY way to cook a brisket is by smoking it for many hours in the smoker….trust me on this. I use hickory wood chips in the smoker and cover the brisket with a heavy dusting of Cavender’s All Purpose Greek Seasoning. This seasoning is simple and allows the beef flavor to stand out.


Nacho Chips – I prefer white or blue corn chips and lean toward the organic.  I guess you could call me a ‘chip snob’.

Black Beans or Pinto Beans – drained, your choice, but don’t forget to drain the
beans. No one wants soggy nachos.

Cheddar Cheese, grated

Pepper Jack Cheese, grated

Pico de Gallo, drained (recipe on this site)

Brisket, smoked and chopped

1-can Enchilada Sauce

Guacamole (recipe on this site)


  • place nacho chips into a baking dish or cookie sheet
  • top with black beans (drained)
  • next add smoked brisket (to which you have already added one can of enchilada sauce and heated on the stove top) – chop the brisket so it will fit the size of your chips
  • top with grated cheddar and pepper jack cheese
  • sprinkle with fresh Pico de Gallo minus the liquid…again no soggy nachos
  • broil until cheese is bubbly.
  • top each nacho with a spoon of guacamole.

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Filed under Beef, Brisket, Mexican

Pico de Gallo

picoGo to your local farmer’s market and look for tomatoes that have an acidy bite to them. You can also use the traditional Roma tomatoes; make sure they are ripe, but firm. Truthfully, any ripe tomato will work.  Also, another key ingredient, second only to ripe tomatoes, is fresh cilantro. I love the smell of cilantro and how it adds that extra freshness to any dish. Chop everything pretty small, not minced. Pico only lasts one day, but you won’t have to worry about leftovers…they will eat every bite!  If you are going to use pico on your nachos and in your guacamole, you might want to double the recipe.  Remember, Pico is all about the right balance of your ingredients.

5 Roma tomatoes, ripe, but firm

1 small onion

3 Jalapenos, no jar stuff!

Cilantro, a nice size amount

Lime Juice, ½ lime, use fresh only.

Salt; taste first, then salt lightly if needed. Don’t forget, your chips will have salt on them.

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Filed under Celebration, Dip / Spread / Sauce / Seasoning, Mexican, Salad, Side Dishes / Vegetables, Spring, Summer