Archive for the ‘Main Dish’ Category

I’m a part of an amazing group, on Facebook, called The Mix. It’s based on a mutual love of essential oils, and it has grown into a community that shares healthy (and not-so-healthy) recipes, workout tips, “Scent of the Month”, DIY, skincare, and more!

I happen to be a leader in our culinary team and some of our members have come up with an amazing recipe using Young Living’s Lavender Vitality. I mean, look at it! It looks so juicy and inviting! The combination of bright lemon and floral lavender really elevates this dish to a whole new level.

Try this recipe out and tell me how you like it!

Photo by: Nicole Ahart Radmacher

Lavender Chicken (from The Mix)


>> 1 lemon, zest and juice
>> 2 sprigs of thyme, leaves pulled off stem
>> 2 tablespoons olive oil
>> 2 drops of Young Living Lavender Vitality
>> 2 tablespoons honey
>> 2 pieces of bone-in, skin-on chicken, either breast or leg
>>  Pinch of salt and pepper
>> Sprig of culinary lavender and twist of lemon slice for garnish


Combine Lavender Vitality oil, olive oil, honey, thyme, and lemon zest and juice. Mix well.
Add chicken pieces and spoon marinade over chicken until well coated. Cover and marinate for 30 minutes (or up to 4 hours).

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Put chicken and marinade into roasting pan. Sprinkle tops of chicken with salt and pepper. Roast chicken for 45 minutes, turning pieces over halfway. Cook chicken until it has an internal temperature of 165°F or when thickest part is pierced with a skewer, the juices run clear (not red or pink).

Serve chicken with cooking juices poured over and around.

To order Young Living Lavender Vitality, either message me or talk to whoever you have talked to about Young Living before.


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Chorizo Cornbread

Storms came rolling into the area today and dropped the temperatures to the low to mid-eighties. That means, in Texas, that you can use the oven…. perhaps even wear a light jacket.

At the store, the shelves were emptied of the hot cocoa and marshmallows… In Texas, there are very few times that we will empty the shelves. First, at the whiff of a tropical storm, the water will be gone. Second, when Blue Bell stopped production, I offered $50 a spoonful of some contraband Homemade Vanilla to anyone willing to play listeria roulette. Lastly, when the temperatures fall below the eighties, we take full advantage of pretending that both Fall and Winter exist here. Sure, I may be sweating bullets… but we really need to take these adorable Winter wonderland photos for our greeting cards that I found on Pinterest.

What was I talking about? Oh… oven-cooking…

I had a hankerin’ for some cornbread and a pound of veal chorizo that needed to get cooked… so, chorizo cornbread it is!

It’s spicy, flavorful, and…. best of all…. a one-pot wonder!

It’s almost like a Texas version of shepherd’s pie… but with cornmeal and BIG Texas flavor.

Before I go off on another tangent, I’ll share this recipe with you.

For the Cornbread:

3/4 cup cornmeal
1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 cup quinoa
1/4 cup red onion, diced
1/4 cup red bell pepper, diced
1/4 cup pepper jack cheese, shredded
1 egg
1 cup milk
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
1 fresno pepper, sliced
1 pound of chorizo (I use organic veal chorizo)

Preheat your oven to 400°

  1. In a mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the milk, egg, and grapeseed oil.
  3. Slowly pour the milk mixture into the dry mix. Stir in the peppers, onion, and cheese. Set aside.
  4. In your cast iron skillet, brown the chorizo but do not cook through.
  5. Pour the batter over the chorizo, top with the sliced fresno peppers.
  6. Place your cast iron skillet on the middle shelf and bake for 35-40 minutes or until golden brown.
  7. Allow to cool for about 10 minutes before slicing into wedges.
  8. Serve with your favorite condiments. I love serving my cornbread with fresh guacamole, black bean and corn pico de gallo, and salsa.

Fresno PepperBefore CornbreadAfter Cornbread

Chorizo Cornbread

And there you have it! Delicious Chorizo Cornbread with black bean & corn pico and guacamole!


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Yesterday was Labor Day! I hope that you all enjoyed spending time with your families and relaxed. It’s a little difficult to do that here, with a baby, but he’s still quite enjoyable and we had a good time snuggling and playing.

We were in the mood for good ole’ BBQ. We had four slabs in the deep freezer that needed to be used. So, I took out a slab and decided to get creative.

We looooove spicy food. If you don’t, then you probably should skip ahead to another post. This recipe is all about kick!

Now, we have only attempted smoking ribs once before and it was….okay. So, we’re novices in this department. However, with a little experimentation, I think we about have it down!

Peach Habanero Ribs!

First, you need to trim, rinse, and pat your ribs dry. Take the membrane off the back and trim the fat. It helps the flavor to really get into that meat!

Dry rub:
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp black pepper
1 tbsp smoked Paprika
1 tbsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp Cumin
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp Chile Powder

Mix and rub that goodness into your meat! Allow to sit for 10 minutes before your put it on the grill


We found the 3-2-1 method worked best for us. At 225°, 3 hours on indirect heat, 2 hours wrapped in foil with a little liquid of choice (I was bad and used cola), and 1 hour, out of the foil, being basted with bbq sauce and cooked on indirect heat again to get a good crust.


Peach Habanero BBQ Sauce
1 can Peach halves in heavy syrup
2 cups Ketchup
1 tbsp Dijon Mustard
2 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup Habanero hot sauce (not like salsa)
1 habanero
1 tsp chili powder
1/4 yellow onion

Place all ingredients into a blender and blend till smooth. Place in a heavy pot and simmer for about 15 minutes. Use to baste ribs and serve on the side.



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I am sometimes not a fan of fish. It tastes….well…fishy when it’s not fresh and I am very particular when it comes to fresh fish. I like fried mostly…though I know it’s not very healthy.. (Croaker, Crappie, Flounder, Redfish, Sheepshead, etc). You can fry pretty much anything and it will taste delightful.

In comes Mahi Mahi. It’s so good. you have to say the name twice. I kid!

My first encounter with this delightful fish was at Dewey Destins in Destin, Florida. It was on a plank and marinated in Teryiaki goodness. I didn’t think non-fried fish could ever be so yummy. I did a little happy dance in my mind and decided that I could actually have fish that wasn’t dripping in oil, surely canceling out the health benefits.

I once visited a restaurant in the Outer Banks of North Carolina and we stopped at a family restaurant. I ordered a Mahi BLT because blackened and bacon were in the description. They saw me coming! Wowza it was delicious! It had crispy delicious bacon, the fish was flaky and clean, good flavor, and came with a spicy remoulaude (made without pickle relish). I still think about this sandwich!

There are also two places in Pensacola worth mentioning. The Fish House and Shaggy’s. The Fish House, albeit a little on the expensive side, has amazing fish tacos. Shaggy’s blackened Mahi sandwich is dripping in teryiaki and also comes with a grilled pineapple and a house sauce similar to Thousand Island.

Before I get carried away with this mental road trip, I should come back to the subject at hand. Homemade fish tacos!

These are nice and spicy and you must add the Corn and Black Bean Relish and Jalapeno Coleslaw to get the full effect!

Spicy Fish Tacos

3 fillet of Mahi (or my favorite, Lionfish… but you probably won’t find that anywhere unless you are besties with a diver or you are a diver…I digress…let’s get on with the recipe)
Juice of one lime
2 tbsp oil (olive, canola, grapeseed)
2 tbsp Colombian Seasoning (You could use Adobo)
1 tsp Cayenne

Combine the oil, juice, and seasonings. Pour over fish, in a freezer bag, allow to sit for 30 mins.

Broil for 8-10 minutes, turning fish over halfway through broil. Grilled is better, but do what ya gotta do!

Cut into pieces and build…your….taco!

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Growing up, having fried chicken was a family treat! We didn’t eat it all the time but when we did, I would savor every bite. However, when I got married, it seemed that I had NO idea how to make fried chicken. My very first attempt to make heavenly fried chicken for my beloved husband ended up turning into an episode of half cooked chicken and me crying at my failure. Little did I know, and what became my saving grace that evening, my husband didn’t really care for fried foods anyway. So, I was off the hook, at least I thought I was. Yes, although my husband doesn’t care for fried foods, I do! I love fried chicken! But what was I to do? Make fried chicken (the right way, following my mother’s recipe!) and make my husband sit there with a gurgling belly as I savored each glistening piece of poultry perfection? No, of course! As a dutiful wife, I must make the great compromise! Who knew that compromise could actually taste good? Well, I can tell you that it does. I used our shared interest of flavors and made “fried” chicken that is both moist, juicy and delicious! So, please enjoy the following “fried” chicken recipe that won’t make your house smell of frying oil and will actually be a little more friendly to your waistline!

Buttermild Chipotle Ranch “Fried” Chicken

  • 8 pieces of bone-in chicken (cut evenly)
  • 2 cups of buttermilk
  • 1 cup of Chipotle Ranch Dressing (1 cup of Ranch Dressing, 2 chipotle peppers and 1 clove of garlic blended)
  • 2 cups of Instant Potato Flakes
  • 2 tbsp Paprika
  • 1 tsbp Cayenne
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

– In a medium baking dish, combine the buttermilk and Chipotle Ranch Dressing
– Place the chicken in the dish and coat both sides
– Cover the dish and allow the chicken to soak 6 hours to overnight
– Take a small baking dish and add the potato flakes, paprika, cayenne, salt and pepper. Mix.
– Take each piece of chicken and coat before placing on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper
– Cook at 400° for 40-50 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and clear juices run

Chicken soaking in Buttermilk Chipotle Ranch

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Thanks to a great friend here in Mobile, a few of us Coast Guard wives were able to get together yesterday for a BBQ. She won a Backyard BBQ from the local FOX news channel and we had a catered BBQ dinner from a local joint. We had a great time! There was a lot of leftover food. So, I was able to bring home a bunch of leftover chicken. Now, we could very well just eat it as is. However, we all know that we can get in a taste bud rut after a while. So, my brain started thinking about other ways that I could transform this chicken into something spectacular. So, I came up with this simple and flavorful way to transforming leftovers into a zesty chicken salad with a Southwestern flare. I hope that you try it out and enjoy it!

  •  2 cups of shredded leftover chicken
  • 1/4 cup of Ranch dressing
  • 1 Chipotle pepper in Adobe
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 2 tbsp of lime juice
  • 2 tsbp of chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup of corn
  • 1/4 cup of black beans
  • 1/4 cup of sliced red onion (caramelized)
  • 1/4 cup of diced avocado
  • 1/4 cup of diced tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Shredded lettuce, flour tortillas, chips, or anything you’d like to serve it with

– In a food processor, combine the Ranch, chipotle pepper, garlic, lime juice, and cilantro. Process until smooth.
– In a large mixing bowl, combine the shredded chicken, Ranch mixture, corn, black beans, caramelized red onion, avocado, and tomatoes. Toss until evenly coated in the Ranch mixture. Add salt and pepper to your taste.
– Serve either on shredded lettuce, as a wrap, or as a dip! You can even serve it warm (that’s how I like mine)!

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So, I was all set to make Taco Soup yesterday….. until I realized that I didn’t have corn or ranch style beans. So, I had to scrap it and try something different. I had a can of adobe chipotle peppers and a can of my favorite enchilada sauce sitting there all lonely and desiring to be used. So, I tried something new…. and boy did it hit the spot! This is REALLY spicy…. so diner beware!



  • 1 pound of lean ground beef
  • 1 cup each of dried black, red, and kidney beans
  • 1 large yellow onion diced
  • 1 large can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 medium can of tomato sauce
  • 1 can of hot rotel tomatoes
  • 1 package of hot taco seasoning (or 2 tbsp each of chili powder, cumin, paprika, pepper, and cayenne)
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • 3 chipotle peppers from a can of chipotle peppers with adobe
  • 1 small can of your favorite enchilada sauce (Mine is Old El Paso)
  • 2 cup of water
  • salt and pepper to taste

– First, you need to prepare the beans. Clean, place in a pot of 4 quarts of water, season with salt, and boil for 10 mins. Turn off, let sit overnight, and drain. Set aside.
– Using a small blender or food processor. Mix a half cup of the diced tomatoes and the chipotle peppers until smooth.
– In your pot, add the beef and onions. Brown the meat, add the spices and garlic. Add the rotel and enchilada sauce. Add the beans, chipotle/tomato mix, and tomatoes. Add the water, stir and add whatever spices you believe needs to be added for taste.
– Allow to simmer for hours for best results. Add homemade flour tortilla chips, cheese, guacamole, or any other condiment you desire.



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