Author: smincoff

Easy Homemade Hamburger Buns

Easy Homemade Hamburger Buns

Making homemade hamburger buns is fun, easy and way better than pulling weeds… Just ask Pepé Summer weekends often seem to involve a lot of grilling or gardening and this one was going to be both. We planned on grilling some burgers on Sunday, but […]

Best Homemade Grilled Burgers

Best Homemade Grilled Burgers

My hubby makes the best grilled burgers   It was a lazy summer day without any plans other than to relax by the pool, so I made these Easy Homemade Hamburger Buns and my hubby grilled his incredible perfect burgers. He’s been making them for years, […]

Easy Chimichurri Sauce

Easy Chimichurri Sauce

Easy Chimichurri sauce with Cilantro

Is it a sauce or a marinade?

Well, it’s both. Or as my hubby would answer… “Yes”. If I ever ask two questions in a row… a “is it this or that”, “do you want to go here or there“ question, you can count on him to always just say yes. It drives me crazy and I don’t know why I haven’t totally learned not to do it. That being said, it really is either. You can marinade your meat with this sauce or just spoon it over your food after it‘s cooked. Either way it’s delicious on so many things. Some options are to serve it as a sauce with grilled meat such as this Chili Lime Pork Tenderloin, or it also goes well with steak, chicken, shrimp, fish or kabobs of just about any sort, grilled veggies… Seriously, just about anything grilled would be great with this sauce. You might want to make a double batch.

Best Chimuchurri Sauce

Cilantro or Parsley?

Pepé and Claude are having another heated debate over whether chimichurri should be made with cilantro or parsley. Some people hate cilantro and think it tastes like soap, so if you’re feeding them, you might to skip the cilantro. But overall, you can either use all cilantro, all parsley or a mix of both. This sauce is very flexible and it’s totally up to you. Sorry Pepé and Claude, but neither of you win that debate.  However, you can still taste victory in the success of this easy and amazing sauce with whichever way you choose to serve it.

Easy Chimichurri Sauce Ingredients

Pepé is all ready to blend this up into the best chimichurri you’ve ever had.

Easy Chimichurri Sauce
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Easy Chimichurri Sauce

This easy and fast sauce or marinade will add another dimension to so many main or side dishes. It’s not just delicious, but very versatile as well. You can substitute or delete many of the ingredient to suit your own tastes.  
Total Time5 mins
Servings: 1 Cup

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups Cilantro fresh
  • 3 Cloves Garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 Tablespoon Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1/2 Cup Olive Oil extra virgin
  • Salt and Pepper to Taste

Instructions

  • Blend all ingredients together in a blender or food processor, but don’t blend it so much that you can’t see bits of leaves and other ingredients. Start with the garlic, wine and lemon juice, then add cilantro and other ingredients keeping a good eye not to turn this into a mousse. Store in a jar for a few weeks or until you’ve eaten all of it. It goes great on so many things. Some options are to serve it as a sauce with grilled meat such as this Chili Lime Pork Tenderloin, or it also goes well with steak, chicken, shrimp, fish or kabobs of just about any sort, grilled veggies... Seriously, just about anything grilled would be great with this sauce. You might want to make a double batch.

Notes

Note: You don’t want everything pureed to the point of no texture. You want to see bits of different stuff as well as have some texture.
Grilled Sweet Potatoes & Asparagus

Grilled Sweet Potatoes & Asparagus

Grillin’ & Chillin’ We just grillin’ & Chillin’, but Pepé is confused as always. He wants to know why I’m putting my sweet potatoes in the microwave when I said we were grilling. Fair question I guess. I like to put my veggies on the […]

Chili Lime Pork Tenderloin & Chimichurri Sauce

Chili Lime Pork Tenderloin & Chimichurri Sauce

Well, the Game of Thrones finale may have been disappointing, but my dinner was a hit! I originally wanted to do a pig roast. Not your ordinary pig roast, but cooked via sous vide, then on a spit. I saw the idea from ChefSteps® and […]

No Flip Chicken Quesadillas

No Flip Chicken Quesadillas

Cinco de Mayo dinner

No flip, no mess, no stress

Hey, thanks for stopping by. There are probably 40,000 chicken quesadilla recipes out there, so I have no idea how you landed here, but I’m glad that you did and I really think you’re gonna love this recipe.  I had a professional chef eat them at my house when I served them at a party I was hosting and he thought I bought them from an authentic Mexican restaurant. He thought they were amazing. Yay! (insert pat on back here) 

If you have a griddler or panini maker, you don’t even have to flip them, therefor no worrying about the good stuff flying out during the flipping process, and they cook twice as fast as they do in a skillet, so bonus! #hooray 

You can serve these quesadillas as an appetizer or a meal. This recipe makes quite a lot, so feel free to cut it in half or quarter if you want. Or… You can freeze the leftovers for a day when you don’t have time to cook. Sometimes I just freeze the mix and assemble and cook the quesadillas another day. #timesaver

Onions and Peppers for quesadillas

Cut onions and all peppers. Heat a large skillet on med/high. Add oil to skillet and once that is hot, sauté onions and peppers for about 5-10 minutes. While that’s cooking, cut up your chicken. Place that in the skillet along with the minced garlic, and cook that for a few minutes. Then add all the seasonings and lime juice and cook that for another few minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. 

chicken, onions, jalepenos, peppers

Divide mixture into 6 even amounts. I already used two before I remembered to take a photo.

I like to set up a cutting board for assembly. It works for building and cutting. Build two. One goes in, and then later, one comes out. You will have room to cut the finished quesadilla while the other waits it’s turn to be cooked. Chicken Quesadilla in Griddler

Griddler or panini maker make this faster and easier

Check for doneness after 2-3 minutes. Cut into equal portions. I like to serve with my awesome homemade Guacamole, sour cream and salsa. Here are some optional side dishes if you want to make it more of a meal. Delicious Jicama Mango Slaw or this easy Light Mexican Corn Salad.

What goes with Chicken quesadillas

Chicken, Cheese, Mexican, Quesadilla, Tortilla, Cinco de Mayo, Tex Mex, Easy

No Flip Chicken Quesadillas

Whether you’re looking for an appetizer or a main for Cinco de Mayo, these No Flip Chicken Quesadillas have got you covered. #timesaver
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Appetizer, Lunch, Main Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 6 Medium Quesadillas

Ingredients

  • 3 Cups Boneless/Skinless Chicken Thighs or Breasts Cut into small pieces
  • 1 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 Cups Yellow Onions
  • 1 Cup Bell Peppers remove stem and seeds
  • 2 Large Jalapeños remove stems and seeds
  • 3 Large Cloves of Garlic minced
  • 1 Teaspoon Ground Cumin
  • 1 Teaspoon Ground Coriander
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoon Mexican Oregano Regular is fine too
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 2 Teaspoon Sweet Paprika
  • 1 Lime (juice only)
  • 12 6 Inch Flour Tortillas
  • 2 Cups Shredded Mexican Cheese Blend

Instructions

  • Cut onions and all peppers. Heat a large skillet on med/high. Add oil to skillet and once that is hot, sauté onions and peppers for about 5-10 minutes. While that’s cooking, cut up your chicken. Place that in the skillet along with the minced garlic, and cook that for a few minutes. Then add all the seasonings and lime juice and cook that for another few minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
  • Heat your Griddler® on med/high (or a skillet if you don’t have a Griddler®) and start the assembly. Place one tortilla on a cutting board with 1/4 cup of the cheese on top. Place 1/6th of the chicken mixture on top of that and then another 1/4 cup of the cheese on top followed by one more tortilla. You do not need to fill these edge to edge, as everything cooks, melts and is pressed, it pushes the mix to the edges and sometimes beyond. Gently place this in the griddler, close the lid and let it cook for 3 minutes or until quesadillas are light brown. While it’s cooking, assemble another quesadillas so it’s ready to go in when the other one comes out.
  • When done cooking, place on cutting board and cut into 6 pieces. I like to serve with my awesome homemade Guacamole, sour cream and salsa.

Notes

Note: The Griddler makes cooking these super easy because there’s no flipping it since it cooks on both sides at once. That also makes it faster than a skillet. Bonus!

Light Mexican Corn Salad

Light Mexican Corn Salad

Because there are other options besides rice and beans Why does almost every Mexican meal in the United States come with rice and beans? OK, I like rice and beans, don’t get me wrong, but really? Let’s step it up already. Plus this Light Mexican […]

Bitter Salty Perrotini

Bitter Salty Perrotini

Margaritaville was too crowded Sometimes you just don’t want a margarita with your Mexican food. I mean let’s be serious… They’re good, but I can never drink more than one or two before I need to scrape all that sweet and sour stuff from my […]

Sage Corn Bread Dressing

Sage Corn Bread Dressing

baked cornbread stuffing

What’s the Difference Between Dressing and Stuffing?

It’s so simple… Stuffing gets “stuffed” inside the turkey or whatever is being stuffed, and “dressing” is cooked outside the bird. A particular brand of stuffing may or may not have had something to do with the fact that nobody calls it “dressing” is anymore. So, call it what you want, but Pepé and I call it delicious! Sorry to those who are gluten intolerant, I have no substitute for you… Unless you want more meat. Yes, eat more meat or healthy veggies… I guess those are options, and don’t forget dessert.  

Could it be a North or South thing?   

Something I’ve noticed, is that it seems like the people that I know from the northern states tend to lean towards traditional bread dressing and the people that I know from the southern states tend to lean towards cornbread dressing.  My hubby, who is from way up north (ya, you betcha ‘der, eh?), And my step-father prefer the traditional bread dressing. Good news is, you don’t have to take sides. They are both delicious, so Pepé and I just make them both and everyone is happy. 

Sage Corn Bread Dressing

It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving at our house without this southern style cornbread dressing. It smells and tastes like the fall season. Goes great with turkey and gravy too.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Servings: 9 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 Pan Corn Bread (8" x 8") (crumbled)
  • 1 1/4 Cup Onion (chopped)
  • 1 1/2 Cup Celery (chopped)
  • 1/2 Cup Butter
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons Fresh Parsley (finely chopped)
  • 2 1/2 Teaspoons Dry Rubbed Sage
  • 1 Teaspoon Fresh Rosemary (minced)
  • 1 Tablespoon Fresh Thyme (stems removed)
  • 2 1/2 - 3 Cups Chicken Stock or Turkey Stock (homemade)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Make corn bread (box or homemade) and let sit over night to get stale. Crumble in large bite size chunks into a bowl.
    cornbread stuffing ingredients
  • Chop onions and celery.
    fresh herbs for dressing
  • Mince the fresh herbs.
    sauté veggies for stuffing
  • Heat skillet on medium hight. Melt the butter in the pan then add the onions and celery. Season with salt and pepper and sauté until slightly tender (a couple of minutes).
    mixed cornbread dressing
  • Transfer butter, onion and celery mixture to the bowl with the crumbled corn bread. Season with herbs, and at least half of chicken stock. Season, stir and taste. Mixture should be somewhat wet, but not soupy. The less you stir, the more large bits of cornbread you will have. If you get it too wet, don’t worry... Just cook it longer until it’s the firmness or dryness you desire. Overall it should take 35 minutes in a preheated 350°F oven. It should just slightly turn brown on the top.
    baked cornbread stuffing

Fresh Herb Bread Dressing

Fresh Herb Bread Dressing

Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme Or should I say, comfort, strength, love and courage? These are just some of the ingredients that go into this classic herb bread stuffing, but because I was writing the recipe and I just happened to list the ingredients in […]

Easy & Juicy Smoked Turkey

Easy & Juicy Smoked Turkey

Pepé Wants to know if it’s Legal to Smoke Turkey?  Um, well Pepé, it’s not that kind of smoking, so yes, it’s totally legal. We will not be interrupted by the police today. Now, the fire department… Uh… Well, hopefully not. We are just gonna […]

Super Cute Turkey Cheese Ball

Super Cute Turkey Cheese Ball

Is it Too Cute to Eat?

No. It is not too cute to eat. It’s too delicious to go to waste. Pepé and I always have to be the first to dig in and put some of this yummy turkey cheese ball on a cracker. People may not want to be the first one to take a knife to it, but, once they taste it, they will gobble it up! It may look like it takes a lot of time, but I timed myself putting those almond slivers on, and it was only 5 minutes. The hardest part is the tail feathers, but it’s really not complicated and the cheese ball is chilling anyway, so you have time. You can always skip that part and just use pretzel sticks for the tail feathers if you want, but it won’t be as cute. Seriously, people will be impressed, but you don’t have to tell them it was really easy. Let them think you spent all day on it. LOL 

Step by Step Instructions

Cheese ball ingredients

Mix 8 ounces cream cheese, 4 ounces blue cheese crumbles and the 5 ounce jar of cheddar cheese spread. Form into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.

turkey cheese ball wrapped in plastic

dyed cream cheese

While that’s going on you can create the tail feathers. Don’t do this too far in advance, the crackers will get soggy and fall over. An hour or two is plenty. You can do the rest days in advance. Mix 1/4 cup cream cheese with orange gel food coloring until you achieve the color desired and thin with a tiny amount of water to make it about the consistency of toothpaste or slightly thicker.

Place orange colored cheese mixture in a plastic bag or piping bag, snip a very tiny end of one corner of the bag. Pipe orange part onto 4 crackers first. (It’s best to actually pipe it onto a few spare crackers just in case any are not up to your satisfaction, or in case one falls onto the floor).

gel food coloring in cream cheese

Cut a much larger corner from the bag and squeeze the remaining dyed cheese back into the bowl. Add red gel coloring to the cheese and repeat the previous process with the brown gel food coloring until you’ve piped on all three colors. It’s nice to start with the orange, so you don’t have to have 3 separate amounts in three separate bowls.

turkey tail feathers for cheese ball

Next, cut a sliver out of a red bell pepper that will become the head and neck of the turkey. red bell pepper for turkey neck

After the ball is done chilling, take it out of the fridge, place it in the center of your serving platter (making sure you have room for your crackers), smooth it out if necessary and start adding the almond slivers as shown above.

turkey cheese ball with almonds

Attach the red bell pepper to the cheese ball and pipe small dots onto the pepper for eyes. Insert the tail feathers into the back of the ball as seen in photo) and arrange crackers around the turkey cheese ball. I personally like these “Keebler Flip Side” crackers because the pretzel side that I pipe cheese onto for the tail feathers, stays crispy longer than the cracker side.

Turkey cheese ball for thanksgiving

Super Cute Turkey Cheese Ball

This super cute turkey cheese ball is sure to be a hit at your next Thanksgiving gathering, but you might have to be the first to dig in. People often think it’s too cute to eat and they don’t want to destroy your creation.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Course: Appetizer, Dip, spreadable
Cuisine: American
Servings: 1 pound Ball

Ingredients

  • 8 Ounces Cream Cheese
  • 1/4 Cup Cream Cheese (optional for piping tail feathers)
  • 4 Ounces Blue Cheese Crumbles
  • 5 Ounces Kraft Old English Cheddar Cheese Spread
  • 1/4 Cups Almond Slivers
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper (for the head and neck)
  • Gel Food Coloring (orange, red, brown)
  • Oval Crackers for tail feathers and for serving

Instructions

  • Mix 8 ounces cream cheese, 4 ounces blue cheese crumbles and the 5 ounce jar of cheddar cheese spread. Form into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  • While that’s going on you can create the tail feathers. Don't do this too far in advance, the crackers will get soggy and fall over. An hour or two is plenty. You can do the rest days in advance. Mix 1/4 cup cream cheese with orange gel food coloring until you achieve the color desired and thin with a tiny amount of water to make it about the consistency of toothpaste or slightly thicker.
  • Place orange colored cheese mixture in a plastic bag or piping bag, snip a very tiny end of one corner of the bag. Pipe orange part onto 4 crackers first. (It’s best to actually pipe it onto a few spare crackers just in case any are not up to your satisfaction, or one might fall onto the floor).
  • Cut a much larger corner from the bag and squeeze the remaining dyed cheese back into the bowl. Add red gel coloring to the cheese and repeat the previous process until you’ve piped on all three colors. It’s nice to start with the orange, so you don’t have to have 3 separate amounts in three separate bowls.
  • Next, cut a sliver out of a red bell pepper that will become the head and neck of the turkey.
  • When ball is done chilling, take out of the fridge, place it in the center of your serving platter (making sure you have room for your crackers), smooth it out if necessary and start adding the almond slivers as shown above.
  • Attach the red bell pepper to the cheese ball and pipe small dots onto the pepper for eyes. Insert the tail feathers into the back of the ball as seen in photo) and arrange crackers around the turkey cheese ball. I personally like these “Keebler Flip Side” crackers because the pretzel side that I pipe cheese onto for the tail feathers, stays crispy longer than the cracker side.


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