Saturday, June 21, 2008


If you have come to my site here sometime in July and if this blog has no postings for awhile, it is because I am unable to publish at this site. I am lucky to have been able to post this today.
This is due to changing my sign-in name and password AND therefore cannot get into my blog. If this happens it will be rather obvious and an unfortunate happening for me. Hopefully I can get back in and continue posting to my blog.
For now I can give you the LENS where I will post the NEW ADDRESS which is
OR you can contact me at with Granny's Tasties in SUBJECT.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Shrimp Season is now open on the Gulf Coast

I am certainly looking forward to this summer with the shrimp season opening. I understand they will be pricey due to the increase of cost of fuel but the shrimp will still be a great item for summer salads, cold shrimp, fried shrimp and casseroles. I found something interesting on how to prepare the jumbo shrimp over at SEASONED WITH ABANDON. The recipe suggests cooking the shrimp in less time so as not to become tough and then stuffing the shrimp using crab meat. Here is the recipe:

Crab-Stuffed Shrimp
Serve 4 shrimp as an entree, or 1-2 as an appetizer.
For stuffing
1 cup chopped mushrooms (about 1/4 pound)
3 tablespoons minced shallots
1 tablespoon minced garlic (about 3 cloves)
3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley leaves
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 pound lump crabmeat, picked over
1/8 cup minced ham or prosciutto
1/4 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup grated parmesan
1/4 cup white wine
24 Ritz crackers, crushed into coarse crumbs
For Shrimp:
16 jumbo shrimp (about 2 pounds), shelled
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon paprika
Garnish: chopped fresh parsley leaves
Accompaniment: lemon wedges
Preheat oven to 375°F. and butter a large baking dish.
Make stuffing:In a large heavy skillet cook mushrooms, shallots, garlic, and parsley in butter over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened and liquid mushrooms gives off is evaporated. Add ham and crabmeat and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, 3 minutes. Stir in broth, wine, parmesan and cracker crumbs and remove skillet from heat. Mixture should be fairly moist.
Butterfly shrimp by cutting lengthwise along inside curve, almost completely through. Split open shrimp and devein. Mound about 2 tablespoons stuffing onto each shrimp, pressing gently, and put shrimp, stuffed sides up, in baking dish. Melt butter and drizzle over shrimp. Add a small amount of wine or broth to the pan. Sprinkle shrimp with paprika and bake 20 minutes, or until stuffing is golden.
Garnish shrimp with parsley and serve with lemon wedges.
This is fantastic and will make a great meal along with salad and maybe a baked potato. What I like about it is there is no rich cream sauce and it is baked versus a fried shrimp platter.
Here is an idea for using summer squash in a casserole. I cannot find where it was posted but here is the recipe without any quantities.
My mom slices the yellow squash, puts sliced fresh tomatoes on top, and then sliced sharp cheddar cheese slices on top of that. Bake till veggies are tender. I'm sure you could use different cheese, too, but there's just something about cheddar cheese and tomatoes. Can't get much easier than this. I definitely want to make this even if in a small quantity.

Monday, June 9, 2008

To All Cookbook Collectors

Here is something you may just like to have if you collect cookbooks or really use it for all your books. It is a software where you catalog all your books. Really fascinating. It is called "ALL MY BOOKS". A must-have program for every book collector and book lover! Get your book collection organized! This was taken from the website where you can download it today--FREE. YEAH!!! Just think, you can put all your cookbooks into this file on your computer. Best part here is that you can use the internet to get all the info on a cookbook and store it there for future viewing. I know, why do you want all this on your computer. Well why not. If someone needs to know what cookbooks you have, all the information is already available and you can send your friends an email description. Anyway I have been playing with this today since I downloaded it and it is great. Course you can
also use this software to list all your other books as well. I normally do not talk much about software and computers but this is too good to pass up being that it is FREE. I hope you were able to download it.
Come over and visit my NEW FOOD LENS called "Cooking to Satisfy your Taste" . I decided to set up my food blog in another way for other foodies to visit, so I decided on Squidoo. It was fun setting it up and I tried to separate things in certain modules showing my favorite sites, cookbooks and other sources. Eventually I will add recipes and tips and ideas. Leave a comment, if you wish, as I am always open for suggestions or maybe there is something you would like to see there.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Enjoy Your Memorial Weekend!

With all the hoopla of parades, bands and cooking out, my town is having a concert in the park. Great idea to listen to some music while munching on some great food from the grill. Oh yeah, there always is a food stand where you can buy what you want but food from home sure tastes better.
What better way than to have a Twinkie or cupcake from Hostess. I found a way to make my own Twinkies over at "Top Secret Recipes" by Todd Wilbur. This is a how-to video for you to follow which is quite easy. I know it is so much easier to pick up a pack at the grocery store for your picnic. So try this some time soon. I read about even having a fried Twinkie but have not gone that far yet. But I did find a recipe for fried cheesecake bites at that I sure want to try.
How about freezing green onions or fresh grown herbs? I happened upon Lunchinabox blog by Biggie where she described how to do this using empty water bottles. So simple but makes sense. Now as she says there is a time limit to keeping these items in the freezer. Sooo, it sure beats throwing this out and having them available, pronto.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Finger Licking Good

I have been all over the cooking blogs today and found some great recipes. For starters go to The PioneerWoman for some down home, finger-licking recipes. Carrot cake, oatmeal crispies, apple dumplings and fried onion strings. The latter, onion strings, I made a batch yesterday and thoroughly enjoyed them along with my hamburger sandwich. Now that I think about it, I should have put some on my hamburger. Duh! Here is the place for the PW's Fried OnionStrings recipe. Here is the site to pick up alot of her recipes. BTW, she also has a great blog for every day. Atta-a-girl.
Get a free book FROM BARILLA PASTA for 2 UPCS. I use alot of pasta so this is not too hard for me to come up with the UPCS. To redeem your free book, simply mail in two valid Barilla Piccolini UPCs with your name, phone number, email address and mailing address to: Barilla Book Offer,
557 Broadway, P.O. Box 711, New York, NY 10012.
Cookware with graduation and wedding season upon us. Retailers will be cooking up some enticing promotions. Even if you're not in the market for a graduation or nuptial gift, you can get your hands on some brand new kitchen goods, which will come in handy for all that summer entertaining. Here are two places that are offering some good deals:
- Save 40% instantly on kitchen & home from
- Special offers on small appliances from

Friday, May 9, 2008

Happy Mother's Day to All

This is the REALLY BIG weekend to celebrate your Mom. Everyone has a reason and mine is as follows: Thanks Mom for how to cope with all the tricks of life that can come along. You were a good example to follow. I have learned to live my life each day as it comes.
Many of the cooking blogs/sites are giving ideas for what to do/give on Mother's Day. Whatever you decide to do, Mom will appreciate the thought. The best gift for me was to go out to eat being as I cooked for 6 people each and everyday. This was a great treat to be waited upon especially for a meal I would not normally prepare. I usually got to choose where to go, as well.
I came across a new cooking blog today at "Cooking Light" called "OUR TABLE". Lots of interesting foods to peruse thru. What I like about the magazine itself, is that there is a different take on cooking more healthy meals. Cooking for 2 makes a big difference as well. On the home page for "Cooking Light" look for the ad for 2 free issues(down at the bottom of page.) If you wish you can always cancel later on. I find getting magazines this way, gives me a chance to decide if I want to subscribe to them.
I just finished baking a 'lemon pound cake' in a loaf pan from "Taste of Home". Strawberries are available again, so I planned the baking in time.
Ingredients: Loaf Lemon Pound Cake
· 2/3 cup butter-flavored shortening
· 1-1/4 cups sugar
· 2 tablespoons lemon juice
· 1 teaspoon lemon extract
· 2/3 cup milk or 1/2 c yogurt
· 2-1/4 cups cake flour *
· 1-1/4 teaspoons salt
· 1 teaspoon baking powder
· 3 eggs
· Confectioners' sugar
In a large mixing bowl, cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in lemon juice and extract. Add milk; beat for 30 seconds. Sift cake flour, salt and baking powder; gradually add to creamed mixture. Beat on low speed for 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Pour into a greased waxed paper-lined 9-in. x 5-in. x 3-in. loaf pan. Bake at 300° for 1 hour and 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool completely. Remove waxed paper. Dust with confectioners' sugar.
* I used 1 3/4 c regular flour + 1/4 corn starch
** Have all your ingrediets measured and at room temperature.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Chicken, chicken and more chicken!

Chicken seems to be quite dominant on my weekly menu lately. I like chicken, mainly the breast meat, as I find many different ways to use it. Every month there is a sale at the food markets for .99/pound which is pretty good. So I usually buy a large enough package and freeze each piece individually. Sometimes the breast is rather large, so I cook the whole piece and make two meals out of it. Here is a list of meals I have made--baked as is, chicken tenders, chicken pot pie, chicken sweet and sour with rice, chicken parmesan with spaghetti and chicken nuggets. I know there are lots more but these are pretty much it. When I go out to eat, I notice I look for anything but chicken cuz I do pretty good on that at home. With the price of food going out of site, I am glad I like my own cooking. Also look at what the whole chicken can offer such as the legs and thighs as well. The thigh meat can be used for chicken pot pie or chicken salad. The legs are the legs. Not much to change there and who doesn't go for only chicken legs, breaded and baked. You may have noticed I don't mention fried chicken. True, southern fried chicken is terrific but how about all the fat. I, for one, stay away from it as far as cooking it. So all in all, chicken and all its parts can make for many different meals for one person or a family. Try some variety in your chicken meals and your family may just like it. Two sites that have some great recipes are GROUP RECIPES.COM and EONS-COOKING FOR ONE/TWO(links are to the left.)
Also, try some fish now and then. Broiled or baked filets are great with a salad and baked potato. I may have mentioned that catfish filets are our local venue. True they are not as reasonable as chicken but oh so tasty. This is one item I like to order in a restaurant. I am looking forward to us getting fresh fish markets in operation again where the fish is fresh off the boat.
Now that summer is here and fresh vegetables will be available, try cooking at home more often.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Cookbooks to check out

I feel sure many of you have cookbooks you love to look thru for a certain recipe. Or you may have cookbooks you thought you just had to have and still have not opened. I usually order a cookbook cuz I like the way the author cooks. One thing I like to do is copy out special recipes and save them to my own special cookbook.
Here are two new cookbooks I would like to bring to your attention. "Eating-Well-Healthy-Heart-Cookbook" by Philip Ades offers great recipes to help us out to eat better when it comes to our heart. No fast food stuff but good tasting and healthy. On April 29th this book--The-Oprah-Magazine-Cookbook-2008 will be available. These recipes are from O magazine showcasing great chefs who submitted their ideas to her magazine. In the event you don't get her magazine, here is a chance to get those recipes from great chefs all in one book.
Here is a tip I picked up at the food blog--Lunch in a Box . Look for April 15th and how to freeze meats. When I get ground meat I like to separate it into patties for future use. The idea here is to open and place the packaged meat into a baggie; flatten it out to about a 1/2 inch. Now take a long chop stick or ruler and "rule" out the portions. Close the baggie and freeze. This makes for taking individual portions out when needed as it should break off easily. Whether for hamburgers or chili or spaghetti, you now can take out just what you need. Can't get much easier! Try it and see how it works.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Ever had a shrimp po-boy!

Looks like I am slacking off some. Could be the weather being that it is so nice, I have been outside just enjoying. I have been crusing the area for new places to eat and what is on their menu. The menus vary with the restaurant but mostly the seafood is really great. Our waters were rather stirred up since Katrina and the oyster beds are being restocked and the catfish look really good. The biggest problem is where to find fresh seafood as so many of the places were wiped out. Anyway I got a great shrimp po-boy yesterday with the biggest shrimp going. If you don't know what a po-boy is, here goes.
A good roll or french bread loaf
Freshly fried breaded shrimp
lettuce and tomato
mayo (mainly)
Mayo the bread and place lettuce and tomato on it. Place lots of fried shrimp on top of this and top it with more bread. Some folks press the bread with all the goodies(like a panini) which makes the bread nice and crispy. This definitely is a great way to eat shrimp or any other seafood or meat as well.
Living on the coast seafood is plentiful but what is better is to get it fresh off the boat. In June the shrimp season opens and there are so many dishes that can be made. The shrimp can be just cooked and eaten with cocktail sauce, deep fried shrimp, shrimp salad and casseroles as well. Besides shrimp, I feel catfish comes in second followed by bait and hook fish--flounder, red fish and snapper. Not to leave out blue crab for crab cakes. So with seafood so plentiful, I love to search out new restaurants to see what their ideas may be.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Carrot cake or cupcakes

How do you feel about carrots? Maybe take them or leave it alone!!!! Well it seems baking carrot cake or cupcakes is the online "in thing" for baking. Numerous sites are touting using carrots, so I figured I may just as well join in. I have just recently taken to eating the baby carrots with a meal but now I am into using them in baking.
My favorite is the carrot cake but not so much the three layer one as it is just too much cake for me. I went to visit Martha's site and found a great recipe for cupcakes that I turned around and make a 8 X 8 one layer. Yep, even spread the cream cheese frosting which really makes it all the better. Here are the ingredients and go over to her site and get the how-to which is just combining the ingredients and baking at 350º.
Martha Stewart's Carrot Cake Cupcakes
Makes 12 cupcakes or 8 x 8 pan
1 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled) 1 1/2 cups FINELY shredded carrots
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup shredded coconut, plus more for garnish
8 ounces bar cream cheese, room temperature
3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
So I now have a great recipe to take care of carrot cake. A much bigger sheet cake is here Lots of other carrot cake recipes at Group Recipes.
If you would like to read more about carrot cake and its origin, I found a wealth of information at FoodTimeLine by Lynne Olver (IACP & ALA), editor.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Pound cake is anytime!

Hope everyone had a great Easter weekend. I know this is late but I am going to do it anyway. Mainly because I love pound cake and all that you can do with it.
Before I get into the recipes I want to share with you some ideas about making a pound cake. This came off of which I seem to be going to quite often lately.
Here is a list of things to do when making a pound cake.
1. Use only a standing electric mixer.
2. All ingredients must be a room temperature.
3. Use only US Grade AA butter.
4. No substitutions--no margarine, no skim milk and use regular flour.
5. Prep ingredients in advance. Sift flour, bp and salt at least 3 times. Measure the sugar in another bowl.
6. Blend flavoring into the milk in a glass.
7. Keep eggs next to mixer for easier access.
8. Cream butter and sugar at med-low speed. Take care not to overbeat.
9. Be certain pan is of a light color inside.
10. Never bake a pound cake longer than 1 1/4 hours @ 325º.
11. Let cake cool for at least 30 minutes in the pan.
12. Never store cake in the refrig. It will keep for a week.
This is my favorite recipe--Yellow Vanilla Pound Cake. The secrets of a successful pound cake, by renowned Southern cook Edna Lewis
Here is a list of other type pound cakes.
Lemon Loaf Pound Cake
Sour Cream Pound Cake
Certainly one of these should touch your fancy. Strawberries are in right now, so go for fresh strawberries on top of pound cake for dessert.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

St. Patrick's Day

It is time to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. It doesn't matter if you are Irish or not cuz the meal is what counts. True, you do need to like corned beef but I also like the leftovers. Anyway I toodled around and found a classic recipe by Diana Rattray @
that takes care of the cooking part.
Corned beef dinner with rutabagas, carrots, onions, potatoes, and cabbage.
1 corned beef brisket, about 4 pounds 1 small bay leaf
6 peppercorns
2 to 3 rutabagas, cut in chunks
1 pound carrots, 8 to 10, trimmed, scraped, and left whole
12 small whole onions, peeled
6 medium potatoes, peeled
1 medium head of cabbage, cut in wedges
Place meat in a deep stock pot or kettle; cover with water. Add bay leaf and peppercorns. Bring to a boil; skim off foam. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 3 hours. Add vegetables; simmer for about 45 minutes longer, or until vegetables and meat are tender. Serve corned beef surrounded with vegetables. Serves 8 to 10.
If you can find a smaller brisket, just cut this recipe in half. Enjoy the moment and then go for a Reuben sandwich with the leftovers. How much better can this get the next day!
Easter is coming up soon, so I will post my favorite pound cake. I have a recipe from my Mom as well, so I will post something. If you want, look around for a Bunny mold and fancy it up.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Today is National Banana Bread Day

According to, today is National Banana Bread Day. Here in the south bananas are plentiful as we get boatloads of them daily. When not so plentiful, I let them get yucky looking and stick them in the freezer for a later date. Personally I like to eat them as is, on cereal and of course, in baking. I must have a half dozen recipes that I have made and like, so I just pick one and go for it. I like to use the mini baking pans and that way I take out one little one at a time. Course this is a good way to give some away to friends who love the bread but don't do much baking. You don't have to have a holiday to share this goodie.
The one recipe I like came from Food and sometime last fall. This was posted there by the writer but came from Beth Hensperge--PILLSBURY COOKBOOK 1998. It is just one loaf pan but you can always use the minis and spread the dough into at least 3 small ones. Anyway it is one of my favorites which I am sure you have yours as well. I looked in my files for a picture but there were none. Imagine that!
I got my copy of the Southern Living 2007 Annual Cookbook. To say the least there are many recipes to enjoy but I was really dissappointed in that the pictures were like a centerfold only. I like to see the picture on the recipe page itself which makes me inclined to make it. See for yourself. One thing I did get by ordering it was a springform cheesecake pan with a recipe book as well. Yes, yes, I am definitely going to make myself something for Easter. This is going to be one of those rich, creamy ones with a cherry topping.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Valentine's Day is coming soon

Valentine's day is upon us and chocolate is upon us. This looks scrumptous and is so simple to make. They are called Chocolate Kumquat Spring Rolls and was posted Feb 9th, 2008 by Ellen Slattery at Slashfood. She in turn tells us the the recipe can be found at
Epicurious. So I will give you the ingredients and then you go check the how-to at Epicurious.
5 kumquats, cut into 1/4-inch slices and seeded, juices reserved 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream
1/8 teaspoon of salt
8 1/4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 large egg yolk
1 tablespoon Grand Marnier
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
Thirty-six 5-inch square spring roll wrappers
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Canola, vegetable, or other neutral oil for deep-frying
As noted, please read both articles as each has interesting info on these lucious, chocolatey items. This is a fantastic treat.
Here is a malt chocolate cupcake from Rachel Ray via Slashfood from Marisa McClellan. Rachel has her own site at Coconut&lime where she discusses and shows a picture of the cupcakes. She uses malted milk powder which gives a different taste but oooooh so good. These I am going to serve my family as a treat for Valentine's Day.
This info I found very interesting. The wierd use of foods. This covers a myriad of foods and how to use them in your daily life. Like using peanut butter to remove gum from a carpet, for example. There is a slideshow at
AOL, so I hope you can get to it. Let me know if you cannot and I will get some of the suggestions and add them to my site.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Try some citrus desserts!

I am back from a great vacation in Hawaii. That is Honolulu, Oahu and Lahaina, Maui. Still in jet-lag as Sunday rolled into Tuesday in nothing flat. Everything seemed to be with pineapple and macadamia nuts so I enjoyed. I also tried fruitbread, purple sweet potato, poi and Korean noodle soup(ugh on the last two.) Finally got a grilled hamburger with some good fries at the airport that brought me back to the mainland.
Anyway today I came across a blog by Smitten Kitchen with a list of citrus desserts to link to. The list is after a colorful array of candied grapefruit peels pictures. My favorite was the lemon bars so I may try them this afternoon. I also want to try the espresso-chocolate-shortbread-cookies/ by Dorie Greenspan. I love this site as I am always surprised each time I read it.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Slow-Cooker Recipes

I got an email this morning from BHG showing 2 slideshows on slow cooking recipes. With the weather changing here in the south, I am always looking for goodies for those really cold days. The first one is for soups . The other one is for dinners and desserts . Now I realize these recipes can feed a load of folks but there are some good ideas here. With the soups you can always freeze the leftovers. Right now I am defrosting some vegetable soup from the last cold snap. Stay warm.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Your Own Steak Sauce

Now that the holiday recipes are over with, let's look at what we can do to improve our meals as well as our eating habits. For the latter it seems nutritionous meals are being touted by eating a balanced meal and what makes up the major food groups. That I will touch on another day.
Right now I want to share a great steak sauce by Chef John. As he says, "no more bottles, make some homemade sauce." Here is a simplified version:
· 1/2 cup cold water
· 1/4 cup raisins preferably white
· 1/2 cup aged balsamic vinegar. (aged because it tends to be a higher quality.
· 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
· 1/4 cup ketchup. (Gives us a nice color, sweetness and acidity.)
· 1/4 cup Dijon mustard. (Don't substitute or you won't get the same product.)
· a pinch of cayenne for some heat (optional)
· 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
· 1 garlic clove cut in half. Don't crush it.
Combine the Steak Sauce Ingredients
Mix and cook on low simmer heat for 15 minutes. When I say low simmer, I mean we want the bubbles just breaking the surface.
After 15 minutes, strain this through a fine mesh strainer. Squeeze out all the juice.
Let this cool completely. If you season this hot, it will taste different when it's cold.
Once it's cool, then taste for salt and pepper. So adjust for your own taste.
Serve the Steak Sauce
Visit Chef John's video to get his take on the sauce.
SpiceAdviceChart--I found a valuable chart to use when cooking with spices that you may wish to keep handy while cooking. The spices are listed with foods they would enhance. Sometimes you just need that extra "bam" for your dish and maybe you could search thru this list.
COOKING ERROR REMEDIES. How many of us have found our dish ruined by too much salt or too hightly seasoned? Here is a site that might save the day. I found some ideas here that could help me out and maybe you also.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

The holiday eating is over.

Well the holiday eating binge is over and I still feel stuffed yet I still reach for another ginger cookie. Not only did I make cookies, I also got them from Santa. Duh!
The picture above is something to try the next time you have mashed potatoes. Chef John at Food Wishes suggests combining potatoes with cauliflower. Makes for an interesting dish. Wander over and view his video and maybe you might want to try it.
I still keep finding good cookie recipes. This one is called
Chocolate-Dipped Shortbread Logs. It is found at in their cookie section. I like shortbread as is but dipped in chocolate just makes it better. Really any cookie is good dipped in chocolate. Right! It really is a simple cookie that can go well with a hot cup of tea on those really cold days.