Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Foodie Friday -- Thanksgiving Edition

 Welcome to the  Thanksgiving Edition of Foodie Friday.
Many of you are on the road today, traveling to a loved one's home; others are rushing around the kitchen, putting the finishing touches on a traditional meal. 

Bandwidth and I have been baking for two days. This is the first year that we've cooked ahead of time, and the refrigerator is jammed with goodies. Here are a few: an orangey cranberry sauce; old fashioned cornbread dressing; Tennessee Caviar (blackeyed pea salsa); a pineapple-cream-pecan cheese ball. I'm also attempting to make a fruit kabob tree. My brother bought a Honey Baked Ham. Mother is 85, but she made her famous green beans and yeast rolls. My eldest son, the chef, arranged for a local Red Lobster to send two lobsters, a humongous salad, and cheese biscuits. Bandy baked his very first Deep Dish Pecan Pie (I helped a little), which included a scratch crust.

 
Deep Dish Southern Pecan Pie
 
Pie Dough:
 
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup cold butter (1 stick), diced
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • Flour, for rolling the dough

  •  
     
    Mix flour, sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add cold butter. Use a pastry cutter to blend the butter into the flour mixture. Add the egg. Shape dough into a ball, cover with Saran Wrap, and chill for at least 30 minutes. When you are ready to make the crust, remove pie dough from fridge and turn out onto a floured board. Using a rolling pin, shape the dough. Place in a deep dish pie pan and flute the edges. Prick bottom of crust with a fork.  Bake in a 375 degree oven (you can use weights in the bottom) for 20 -30 minutes or until crust is lightly brown. Remove crust and cool.
     
      
     
    Filling for a deep dish: 
    • 2 sticks unsalted butter
    • 3 cups packed light brown sugar
    • 2 1/4 cups light corn syrup
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 2 1/2 cups chopped toasted pecans
    • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    • 4 eggs, lightly beaten plus 2 egg yolks
    • pecan halves for garnish
     
    In a large saucepan, add butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt. Mix. Over medium heat, bring mixture to a boil. Stir constantly! Cook for exactly 1 minute. Remove from pan from the burner. Mix in pecans and vanilla. Cool mixture. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs. Add to the cooled filling and beat until smooth. Pour into pie shell. Place on a baking pan (in case mixture bubbles and spills into your oven. Arrange pecans over the surface of the pie in concentric circles. Bake 40 minutes at 350 degrees. Use a pie guard to prevent edges from burning. If the pecans are starting to brown too quickly, cover the pie with tin foil. After baking, remove pan from oven and cool. Serve with whipped cream.

    Note: Our family recipe for pecan pie didn't yield enough to fill a deep dish plate. We tripled the filling, and that's why the recipe calls for larger quantities. But we tinkered a little. The original recipe called for three eggs; I've never used nine eggs in a  pecan pie, so I reduced the quantity to four. Then I began to worry. At the last minute, I added two egg yolks. I'll let you know how this odd chemistry worked out after Thanksgiving.


     
    If you are participating in Foodie Friday, locate the blue Inlinkz icon in the lower, left-hand portion of this post. Click on the icon and follow the directions. After you complete the process, you will see a red "x" beside your name. This allows you to delete your link if you made an error; the red "x" is visible to you only.

    For a complete guide to this linky party, click HERE.

     
     
    ** Would you like to add your recipes to the "Consuming Passions" group board at Pinterest?
    It can be found HERE.  Foodie Friday folks and pinners are always welcome to "pin" with us and chat about food. Just leave a comment on one of my recent "pins," so I'll be sure to see it, and I will send you an invitation. Or you can email me.

     We wish all of you a happy, food-filled Thanksgiving holiday!



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    Sunday, November 24, 2013

    Foodie Friday Favorites: Thanksgiving Picks

    Are you ready for Thanksgiving?
    Still looking for scrumptious recipes?
     
    Here are a few "Most-Viewed" recipes from November Foodie Fridays,
    along with other popular dishes. I visited the archives and posted a few of your favorites from 2011 and 2012.
     
    We'll begin with soup and end with dessert. You'll find
    the recipes by clicking on the link that's above each photo.
     
    Note: To "pin," please click on the links above the photos and pin from the blogs, not from here. Thanks.
     
     
    Starters
     
    Harvest Soup

     
    Asparagus and Ham Alfredo Rolls (Plus a Thanksgiving Bucket List)
    #1 Most-Viewed Recipe--November 8 Foodie Friday
     
     
     
    French Onion Soup
    



     
    Side Dishes
     
    
    Potato Gratin with Rosemary Crust

     
    Trader Joe's Roasted Brussels Sprouts
    #1 Most-Viewed Recipe -- November 22 Foodie Friday
     
     
    Cornbread Dressing: A Taste Test
    #1 Most-Viewed Recipe -- November 15 Foodie Friday
     
     
     
    Rustic Style Herb Bread Dressing
     
     
     
    Bourbon or Brandied Sweet Potatoes
     
     
    French Onion Green Beans
     
     
    Bread
     
    Lib's Famous Cornbread
    #1 Most-Viewed Recipe -- November 1st Foodie Friday
     
     
    Homemade Rolls
     
     
     
     
    Desserts
     
    Slab  Apple Pie
    #1 Most-Viewed Recipe -- November 2011
     
     
    Mini Pumpkin Pies
    Most Viewed Dessert -- November 16, 2012 Foodie Friday
     
     
    Jam Daisy Drops
    Popular Pin on Consuming Passions Pinterest Group Board--November 2013
     
     
     
    White Chocolate Pound Cake


    Carrot Cake Cheesecake
    
     
    

     
    Pumpkin Bread in a Jar



    Biscoff Pumpkin Cheesecake Mini Pies

    For more great recipes, visit the latest Foodie Friday recipe parties:
    November 21st
    November 15th
    November 8th
    November 1st

    This week's Foodie Friday will be posted on Wednesday, Nov. 27, at 7pm central time.
     
    Hope you are having a peaceful, sunny Sunday.
    Have fun visiting these great blogs.
     
    
    

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    Thursday, November 21, 2013

    Foodie Friday

    Welcome to Foodie Friday.
    He Who Shall Not Be Named and I just got home from
    a routine doctor's visit in Nashville. 
     
    Now HWSNBN is happily curled up with a cup of hot cocoa.
     
    A view of Nashville's skyline.
     
    For those who have been following the kitchen reno,
    here's the latest. The top layer of trim was removed from the cabs,
    corbels were removed, the clock was moved back, and a faux chimney hood was built to
    make the hood seem faux functional. I incorporated many of the great ideas that you all have given. Thanks so much!
    I'll post updates on Saturday.
     
    Do you want to know which recipes are trending on Foodie Friday? Tonight and tomorrow, I will give updates about the most popular dishes on Facebook and Twitter.
     
    Without further ado, here is your Foodie Friday! 
     
    Note: Since next Thursday is Foodie Friday, I will post the link Wednesday, November 20th, at 7 pm central time.
     
     
    If you are participating in Foodie Friday, locate the blue Inlinkz icon in the lower, left-hand portion of this post. Click on the icon and follow the directions. After you complete the process, you will see a red "x" beside your name. This allows you to delete your link if you made an error; the red "x" is visible to you only.

    For a complete guide to this linky party, click HERE.
     
     
    ** Would you like to add your recipes to the "Consuming Passions" group board at Pinterest?
    It can be found HERE.  Foodie Friday folks and pinners are always welcome to "pin" with us and chat about food. Just leave a comment on one of my recent "pins," so I'll be sure to see it, and I will send you an invitation. Or you can email me.

     Thanks for stopping by the party. Have a great weekend.

     




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    Monday, November 18, 2013

    Renovation Diary: Courting Behavior

    A small, square courtyard sits in the front of Rattlebridge.
     
    As my general contractor said, the area is pretty but it was built weirdly, without regard to
    the slope of the land and without the use of a building level.
    You can't really turn your car around in the courtyard or you will
    bump into a rosebush hedge or the front porch. Everyone uses
    the blacktop strip as the "turn-around."
     
    A view of the turnaround.
     
    One day Bandwidth and I began to wonder how the courtyard might look if
    steps were added in the center. I tried to create an image with my
    limited photo-editing skills.
     
    My general contractor thought that steps would add to the curb appeal,
    even though we would need to level the inner part of courtyard.
     
    A few ideas were tossed around. Concrete or Bomanite would
    be very, very expensive. Since this area isn't really functional as a
    parking space, why not turn it into a formal courtyard with sod, boxwoods, and
    a walkway?
    Bringing in truckloads of dirt can be a "spendy" thing, too.
    Bandy suggested that we use the dirt that had been moved to make way for the steps.
    My GC perked up and said, "Dr. W wants his pond dug out--we can use that dirt to fill
    the courtyard."
    Dr. W. loved that idea. He will finally get a "Duck Island," to protect the furry critters from
    foxy predators.
     
    Demolition began.
     



     
    You can see the deep tilt of the existing courtyard. Much of this will be hidden by
    shrubs, though. Will and our GC have a few ideas for the structure, too.
     
    Later, the blacktop will be removed and soil will be added.
    Come spring, the Lord willing, we will add the garden details.
    Also, the bricks will be painted SW's Tennessee Limestone, to match the house.

     
    My GC built the steps to echo the porch design. They sweep out, with columns at the base.
    We love them.
    We haven't decided what to put at the base. Another garden? Pavers? Benches?
    We have plenty of time to think about it. And, with surgery looming for a certain, unnamed family member, he is looking forward to dreaming about outdoor projects. I am looking forward to
    dreaming this dream with him.

    I love this photo of father and son as they admire the steps. They are so alike, right down to their body language.  Had to share it!
     
     
    In other news, the steps to Will's garden are finally in progress.

     
    Weather permitting, the structure should be finished before Thanksgiving.
     
    We also have a terrible leak near the swimming pool, like, under the Bomanite. The pool
    also needs a new liner.
    It takes up quite a bit of space in the rear courtyard. We need to decide if we want to fill the pool with dirt (my favorite idea--I'm not a fan of pools).
    Traditional Patio via Houzz
     
     
    Or we could make the pool smaller--a lap pool, for example. Will thinks that swimming is great exercise for old folks like ourselves.

     
     

     
    Well, that's it for now.
    Wherever you are today, I hope it's sunny!
     
    Metamorphosis Monday contribution. 
     
    
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