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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Tomato and Feta Salad!

This "Tomato and Feta Salad" is a simple salad with just a few ingredients, but it's full of fresh flavor!   It so good in the summer when tomatoes, cucumbers and basil are fresh.  I have basil growing out of every pot it seems right now and I look for different ways to use it, because I love the flavor!  
This is good with anything really, but I think it's especially complimentary to Italian, Greek and pasta dishes!   Here is what you need for this:
5-6 fresh tomatoes, diced
1 medium cucumber, peeled and diced
1 medium sweet onion, diced  (I used Vidalia)
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 Tbs. white wine vinegar or rice vinegar
2 tsps. sugar
1 tsp. Greek seasoning
1/2 tsp. fresh ground pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup Feta cheese crumbles (I used a sundried tomato Feta cheese)
Place the tomatoes, cucumber, onion and basil in a salad bowl.   In a separate bowl, whisk the vinegar into the olive oil along with the seasonings, sugar and minced garlic. 
Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss lightly.  Sprinkle the top with the Feta cheese.  Serve immediately.  This is best served right away! 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Buttermilk Lemon Cobbler!

When I posted the recipe for Chocolate Cobbler,   I had a reader write and ask me if I had a recipe for "Lemon Cobbler".   She said a local restaurant where she lived served it and it was to die for!   I didn't have a recipe, but it sounded like something wonderful, since I love lemon desserts.  This is what I came up with and it is downright yummy!   It's also easy as can be!  This definitely qualifies as an 'easy peasy' recipe!    Here is what you will need:
1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1 cup self rising flour
1 cup sugar
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. lemon flavoring or 1 tsp. lemon zest
1  (21 oz.) can or jar of lemon pie filling
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.   Place the stick of butter in an 11"x 7" baking dish or a 2 quart casserole dish works also!   Place in the oven just to melt the butter. 
In a bowl, mix the self rising flour, sugar, buttermilk, vanilla, and lemon flavoring. 
If you do not have self rising flour, you can substitute all purpose flour, plus 1 tsp. baking powder,  and 1/2 tsp. salt. 
Pour the batter evenly over the butter in the baking dish.  DO NOT STIR!
Pour the lemon pie filling evenly over the batter.  DO NOT STIR!
Bake at 350 degrees for 55 minutes to an hour!   It will be slightly brown on top!
This is best served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!   

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

No Bake Chocolate Eclair Cake!

When you want a great dessert, but you don't want to turn that oven on when it's in the 90's outside, this is the one to make!  This has been around for years and many of you have probably seen it or made it or at least, eaten it here or there.  It shows up at church potlucks and family reunions in the South a lot.  However, I have kicked up the usual recipe just a bit and if I do say so myself, it made it even better!   Now, there is nothing wrong with the original recipe and it is popular with so many, but you know I always have to add a little somethin' somethin' to everything!  It's just how I roll!   I didn't change it drastically, but my changes gave it some richness it lacked.   This is still a super easy recipe!
Here is what you will need:
1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup confectioners sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 (3.5 oz.) pkg. instant French vanilla pudding or just vanilla works also (can use sugar free)
3 cups milk
8 oz. frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 (16 oz.) pkg. graham crackers
1 (16 oz.) container of milk chocolate frosting
Beat the cream cheese with an electric mixer until fluffy.  Add the vanilla and confectioner's sugar.  Beat until incorporated.
Add in the dry pudding mixes and milk.  Beat until it starts to thicken.  Fold in the whipped topping. 
Line a 9"x13" baking dish with a single layer of graham crackers.  Spread 1/2 of the pudding mixture over the crackers. 

Place a second layer of graham crackers over the pudding mixture and then spread the rest of the pudding over those.
Uncover the frosting and microwave it for about 20 to 30 seconds.  Just long enough to make it easy to pour over the last graham cracker layer.  Make sure you get all of that foil off of the top of the container before putting it in the microwave.  I know this from!   The fireworks can be interesting!    Pour the frosting over the top and spread very lightly to cover.  Cover the cake and refrigerate for at least 10 to 12 hours...overnight works best! 
Cut in squares and...
Serve!  This has the texture of a light and yummy ├ęclair!