Now that it’s Fall, I’ve notice my cravings for comfort foods are beginning to ramp up. Warm, gooey, yummy, home-cooked meals. And since my boyfriend loves macaroni and cheese (and I love cheese in general), mac & cheese seemed to … Continue reading
Today was one of those days. Nothing was wrong and I have no explanation for it, but I wasn’t my usual peppy, happy self. I suppose it’s one of those wonderful, unexplainable things that comes along with being a woman. … Continue reading
During my visit to Door County, Wisconsin a few weeks ago, I visited this adorable little shop called Pipka’s. Pipka’s has all sorts of custom, handmade vintage-style artwork, home decor, jewelry, collectables and more (made by Pipka herself.) And if … Continue reading
Getting motivated is always tough. Staying motivated can be even more challenging. Continuing to be motivated on the weekends? … Well, that’s next to impossible!
Eating right, working out and saying “no” are some of the biggest obstacles I have faced in a while, but I am determined to see this through and find the me that makes me happy. You know what they say: “Nothing good comes for free.”
So if you’re trying to motivate yourself to live a better lifestyle, to start working out, you’re having trouble staying motivated, or just need a little push to help get you through the weekend without giving in, this one’s for you. Print these out. Hang them on your wall. Frame them in your office. Write these messages on your bathroom mirror. Whatever it takes – YOU’VE GOT THIS!
I made this for dinner tonight and it was so good, I had to share! I have been on an egg kick lately, for whatever reason. I want an egg on everything I eat. Mostly fried, poached or boiled. On … Continue reading
A secret family recipe is OUT!
Some of my favorite memories of my childhood have to do with Cheesy Egg Bake. Strange, right? I remember being a little girl and always going to my godparents’ house for special occasions, get-togethers or post-church lunches. Aunt Kathy, my godmother, is one of the most amazing women anyone could know. She is barely 5-feet tall, has the best hats and shoes, is full of personality and one of the best cooks in this world (seriously.) She and Uncle Charles (my godfather) have been friends with my dad for years and have been a part of mine and my sister’s lives since we were born. They lived in Savannah, GA (where I grew up) and moved to Jacksonville, FL (where I live now) when I was a young girl. We would always make special trips to see them … to go out on their boat, to visit with their family or just for a weekend getaway.
My sister and I loved it. We’d always look forward to playing dress-up in her closet, wearing her T-shirts as dresses with a belt wrapped around the waist, prancing around in her high heels and big hats, and eating the Cheesy Egg Bake. When we couldn’t make it to Aunt Kathy’s on a Sunday, my mom would receive several requests from the two of us to make CEB after church or on a Saturday morning. So, needless to say, when I moved out on my own, I gave Aunt Kathy a call for the recipe. She was delighted to share it with me and I just think it’s too good to keep to ourselves!
I will say, though, that we aren’t much for exact measurements, but I am going to do my best to get the recipe as close as possible. The good thing – you can modify it many ways and it will still be delicious, and it’s so easy to make even a four-year-old can do it!
What you’ll need:
(Note: My photos show slightly different from the ingredients below, because I made it for a large group and had to use a few substitutions.)
* 6-8 eggs
* 1-2 cups whole milk
* 2 cans cream of chicken soup
* 1 onion, finely diced
* 1 pkg. shredded cheddar cheese
* 6-8 slices pre-cooked Canadian bacon (found in the lunch meat section)
* 1 loaf Rye bread
* Garlic salt & pepper to taste
Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees. In a large saucepan, mix 2 cans of soup, 1 cup of milk and 1 package shredded cheddar cheese on medium heat.
Whisk together until cheese is melted. If the mixture is too thick, add more milk 1/4 cup at a time. You want it to form a cheesy, creamy paste, but not too thick and you don’t want it to be runny.
Sprinkle garlic salt and pepper to desired taste. (I do about 2 pinches of garlic salt and 1 pinch of pepper.) Stir in the diced onion. And, as my niece Bailey says, “It’s very important to taste it before you cook it, Aunt Blakeley.”
Pour the cheese mixture into a glass or ceramic baking dish. Once the cheese mixture is poured evenly in the dish, begin cracking the eggs into it, one at a time, trying not to let them touch. You can usually get 3-4 eggs in a row.
Place in the oven for approximately 30 minutes, or until egg whites appear white and cooked and the yolks are not jiggly.
While the egg bake is in the oven, cook the Canadian bacon and toast the bread (1-2 pieces of bread per egg). To cook the bacon, cook on medium-heat in a skillet or on a griddle, about 45-50 seconds on each side. If you are good at multi-tasking, toast the bread while cooking the bacon. Otherwise, it can wait until after the bacon is cooked. Don’t worry about the toast or bacon getting cold. You are going to pour the hot, baked cheese mixture over it.
Once eggs are fully cooked, remove dish from oven.
Spoon one egg atop the bread and cover with cheese sauce. If you’re anything like me, you’ll want a little toast with your cheese … it’s so good! (I seriously could just lick the bowl.)
Serve immediately and enjoy! I really hope you like it. If you do, be sure to think of the sweet Kathy Davenport the next time you make it. I know it will make her so happy knowing someone else is enjoying her delicious recipe. (And if you’re looking for a realtor in the Jacksonville, FL area – she is the BEST!)
Let me know what you think!
And, since I mentioned it being so easy even a four-year-old can make it, I will leave you with this video of my niece’s “Cooking Show.” (Watch out, Paula Dean!)
A few months ago Jimmy and I were in Tampa, FL for a conference, and met up with some friends for Happy Hour. We had eaten a late lunch and weren’t super hungry, but we figured we would get an appetizer to split while having a few drinks. We ended up at Brickhouse Tavern and Tap, a slightly trendy, not-exactly-like-everywhere-else kind of place.
We decided to order the deviled eggs in the “Snack” section of the menu because: A – Who has deviled eggs on their menu? I’d never seen it before. B – They had bacon (which Jimmy loves) and jalapeno (which I love) in them. And C – They were only $4. Win x3.
Our “snack” arrived on a silver tray with six egg halves lined in the center of the tray. They were VERY good, and the presentation of them was very colorful and fun! (This is the best picture I got? Really? I take a million pictures of everything and this is the best I got? I am ashamed.) (P.s. The PBR was not mine, I swear. I was drinking a Blue Moon …)
I figured they couldn’t be that hard to make, and people would love them at parties or potlucks. Deviled eggs are always a hit with just about anyone and they are SO easy, so why not spice them up a bit? (Get it?! HA…)
So I decided to give it a shot. They were easy, delicious and I got a ton of compliments on them.
So here’s how I did it ….
I don’t know about you, but I HATE boiling eggs. I know it’s supposed to be one of those easy things that anyone can do, sort of like boiling noodles or scrambling eggs, but I really suck at it. I never know if they’re boiled all the way, it takes too long and I always mess them up when trying to peel them. Thank goodness I discovered these nifty pre-packaged and pre-boiled eggs at Publix! They’re $3.89/package for 12 eggs, they taste delicious and it saves so much time.
You will need the eggs, as well as mayonnaise, mustard, bacon, a jalapeno, salt, pepper and paprika. I cheated and used Real Bacon bacon bits, but you can definitely pre-cook fresh bacon (I did the 1st time I made these) if you have the time. I discovered that since it gets mixed with so many other things, it still tastes the same and isn’t worth the extra time. I also prefer the mayo made with olive oil to regular, for a little less fat and calories, but you can definitely use regular.
First, slice the eggs in half lengthwise. Remove the yolks and place in a small mixing bowl. Lay the egg halves on a plate or egg serving tray, hole-side up. Then, chop the jalapeno in to small pieces, removing any seeds. It’s important to do this after slicing the eggs if using the same cutting board, otherwise the eggs will be extremely spicy.
The kicker: My mom suggested I get a whole chicken, cover it with foil and cook it in the oven for about an hour. She said it makes the chicken super juicy, tender and delicious. Yeahhhh …. she failed to tell me how disgusting prepping the chicken was going to be!!
BUT – not to worry. I thought to myself, I am a grown woman. I love to cook. This is just a measly little chicken. There is no reason I can’t handle this. So, I sucked it up and got down to business. I removed the chicken from the packaging and rinsed it off in the sink.
It was a little slimy and his skin was stretchy, but hey, nothing I can’t handle. Then I was stuck! I didn’t know what to do next. So I called my mom (a.k.a. my lifesaver every time I am in the kitchen) for step-by-step instructions. And that’s where it stopped. The second I realized I had to pry its frozen legs open (apparently it hadn’t thawed all the way), I had to stop. And THAT’s when I called in my Knight in Shining Armor (a.k.a. the boyfriend.) Not that he has prepped a whole chicken before, but better him being grossed out than me, right? So here we are:
I am on the phone with my mom. My mom is telling me what to do. I am relaying the instructions to Jimmy (my Knight). Jimmy is dealing with the chicken. And my mom is hysterically laughing at this entire situation. Watch for yourself, if you’re brave enough! Click to watch the “chicken video”.
At this point, my mom (all the way in Savannah, GA) has us on speakerphone and she and my step dad are DYING laughing. Did I mention that their dog ran in to a screen door (twice) trying to get in on the excitement?!
So we thought ….
An hour rolls around, still a raw chicken. Two hours rolls around, still has a long way to go. By this point it is 8:30 p.m., we are hungry and that dang chicken is my worst enemy. So we did what any normal person would do – called an angel (a.k.a. Papa John’s)! Sure it was going to be another 45 minutes before that sent-from-Heaven delivery man showed up at our doorstep, but I no longer had any desire to cook at this point. So instead of slaving away in the kitchen any longer, I poured a glass of Pinot Noir, snuggled on the couch, propped my feet up and relaxed.
Well, Wednesday rolls around and I finally had a chance to pick up where I left off – with a COOKED chicken this time – and made our chicken & dumplings.
Lesson learned: Go with a pre-cooked rotisserie chicken next time or stick with pre-cut chicken that can go straight in a pot for boiling. Better yet, I’ll just go to Cracker Barrel for the real thing … without the disaster!
Ok, I must be on a food kick right now … sorry. But I absolutely love to cook and bake, especially if the presentation is fun. And THIS is fun.
See, there’s this website, www.tablespoon.com, and it’s ah-maz-ing. They have the most unique, original and FUN recipes ever. Everything is extremely creative, fun to make and always a crowd pleaser. Too cute not to share!
I am talking about Double Rainbow Cake Jell-O Shots, of course! (Yes, this is the adult version.)
This recipe caught my eye for multiple reasons:
A. One word – rainbow. First of all, who doesn’t love rainbows? They are beautiful, colorful, fun and HAPPY. And these Jell-O shots are happy (and will make you feel happy, too!)
B. What social gathering is complete without Jell-O shots?
C. Everything is better when you add color and a little fun!
So go ahead, give them a try. I’m sure all the guys would just LOVE them for football tailgates and parties …. (well, they might not admit it). You could even change around the colors to coordinate with your favorite sports team!
*Instead of frosting, try Cool Whip or Whipped Cream. It’s a little lighter and easier to work with.
Get the recipe HERE.