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Monday, May 24, 2010

Hummingbird Cake

Ok, this is going on my to do list! It's from the Food Network magazine. Its looks like a winner.

Ingredients

  • Unsalted butter, for greasing
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 cup pecan pieces
  • 3 ripe bananas, chopped
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh pineapple
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil

For the Frosting:

  • 2 packages cream cheese (8 ounces each), at room temperature
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed, at room temperature
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

Make the cake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter two 8-inch round cake pans and line with parchment paper. Butter the parchment and dust with flour.

Spread the pecans on a baking sheet and bake until fragrant and toasted, about 8 minutes. Let cool slightly, then roughly chop. Toss with the bananas, pineapple and 1/2 cup flour in a small bowl.

Whisk the remaining 2 1/4 cups flour, the cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, baking soda and salt in a bowl. Beat the eggs and granulated sugar in a separate bowl with a mixer on high speed until thick and light, 5 minutes. Gradually beat in the vegetable oil.

Sprinkle the flour mixture over the egg mixture, then gently fold to make a thick batter. Fold in the pecan-fruit mixture, then transfer the batter to the prepared pans. Bake until the cakes are firm and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean, 50 to 55 minutes. Cool in the pans on a rack, 25 minutes, then invert the cakes onto the rack to cool completely.

Make the frosting: Beat the cream cheese in a large bowl with a mixer until fluffy, then gradually beat in the butter until combined. Sift the confectioners' sugar over the cream cheese mixture and beat until smooth. Add the lemon zest and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy.

Place one cake layer on a serving plate. Spread about half of the frosting on top, then cover with the other cake layer. Spread the remaining frosting over the top and sides of the cake.

Friday, May 14, 2010

T.G.I.F.

I am so glad it's the weekend. It's not like we have big plans or anything. As a matter of fact my husband will be working tomorrow. It just feels like this has been the longest week ever! I think we are going to open the pool up. The frogs won't be happy. They have started a whole frog family on the cover. There are babies everywhere. They make so much noise at night. I've threatened to get my frog gigger out several times!

For those of you that know me, you know that I have a 12 year old boy trapped inside me. I laugh at the stupidest (is that a word?) stuff. Today was no exception. I saw this soup package in the store today and within minutes had tears rolling down my face.


People were looking at me like I had lost my mind!! Who names it this though? Really? I will never make it, but I had to buy it. Ha!

I think I'm going to let the laundry wait and go relax with one of these............

Have a great weekend!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Heaven On Earth With An Onion Slice

May is National Hamburger Month. I love burgers on the grill. The classic cheeseburger is always good, but sometimes you want to spice it up a bit. That's when I make Black and Blue burgers. They are so good!

Black and Blue Burgers

6 burgers

* 1 lb ground chuck
* 1 lb ground beef round
* 6 fresh kaiser rolls, split
* 3-6 leaves romaine lettuce, torn
* 2 tomatoes, sliced
* 1 red onion, sliced
* 1/3 lb premium blue cheese (not crumbled)

For the Blackened Spice Mix

* 2 teaspoons dried oregano
* 2 teaspoons dried thyme
* 1 1/2 tablespoons paprika
* 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
* 1 teaspoon black pepper
* 1 tablespoon salt
* 1 1/2 tablespoons garlic powder
* 1 tablespoon onion powder

For the Dressing

* 3 ounces premium blue cheese
* 1/4 cup mayonnaise
* 1/4 cup sour cream
* 1 clove garlic, minced
* 1/4 teaspoon onion powder

  1. You will need 1/2 pound blue cheese total (get the block type cheese, not the crumbled stuff in packages).
  2. Prepare your dressing by crumbling 3 ounces of cheese and mixing it thoroughly with the other dressing ingredients and setting aside to chill (do not do this more than a few hours before).
  3. Mix together your spice mix in a large shallow bowl or plate and set aside until needed.
  4. Mix together chuck and round, then separate mixture into 1/3 pound pieces (just over 5 ounces)- you should have 6.
  5. Divide each piece in half and form into a thin patty and place onto wax paper on whatever platter you are working with.
  6. Take the 1/3 pound of blue cheese and cut into 6 divided sections (approximate) and place thin slices onto 6 of the patties you have formed.
  7. Cover these patties with the remaining 6 patties and form a pinched seal around the edges, making it tight.
  8. Pick up each patty, and gently reform the burger and pat it back out to thinness, if needed; rest them on waxed paper.
  9. Take patties one by one and coat in the seasoning mixture, not forgetting to coat the side edges and patting them nicely flat when finished; rest on waxed paper.
  10. Cook over heated coals or on gas grill until it is cooked through or temperature reads 160F (do not press on patties while grilling).
  11. Allow patties to rest 10-15 minutes after cooking for cheese to settle.
  12. Serve on split kaiser rolls (may toast them if you like) with appropriate condiments: lettuce, tomato, sliced red onion, and a little blue cheese dressing (instead of mayo; optional).


And wouldn't it be cute to show up for you Memorial Day cookout wearing this hamburger dress?? Too funny!
I'm not too sure about the dress, but you can't go wrong with the recipe!

What would National Hamburger Month be without a little Cheeseburger in Paradise?

Saturday, May 8, 2010

We're Gonna Fuel The Fire, Gonna Stoke It Up

I love a good bonfire. We have quiet a few of them in the summer. We turn the music on in the "yard cabin," the kids draw or play cards.


It's a great time to hang out with the neighbors and share a s'mores and a Blue Moon.

Or a hot dog or two!

Bonfires are also great for teaching your boys about fire safety. ;)


And don't forget the ghost stories. Here's one of my favorites..........


The Hook

The reports had been on the radio all day, though she hadn't paid much attention to them. Some crazy man had escaped from the state asylum. They were calling him the Hook Man since he had lost his right arm and had it replaced with a hook. He was a killer, and everyone in the region was warned to keep watch and report anything suspicious. But this didn't interest her. She was more worried about what to wear on her date.

After several consultation calls with friends, she chose a blue outfit in the very latest style and was ready and waiting on the porch when her boyfriend came to pick her up in his car. They went to a drive-in movie with another couple, then dropped them off and went parking in the local lover's lane. The blue outfit was a hit, and she cuddled close to her boyfriend as they kissed to the sound of romantic music on the radio.

Then the announcer came on and repeated the warning she had heard that afternoon. An insane killer with a hook in place of his right hand was loose in the area. Suddenly, the dark, moonless night didn't seem so romantic to her. The lover's lane was secluded and off the beaten track. A perfect spot for a deranged mad-man to lurk, she thought, pushing her amorous boyfriend away.

"Maybe we should get out of here," she said. "That Hook Man sounds dangerous."

"Awe, c'mon babe, it's nothing," her boyfriend said, trying to get in another kiss. She pushed him away again.

"No, really. We're all alone out here. I'm scared," she said.

They argued for a moment. Then the car shook a bit, as if something…or someone…had touched it. She gave a shriek and said: "Get us out of here now!"

"Jeeze," her boyfriend said in disgust, but he turned the key and went roaring out of the lover's lane with a screeching of his tires.

They drove home in stony silence, and when they pulled into her driveway, he refused to help her out of the car. He was being so unreasonable, she fumed to herself. She opened the door indignantly and stepped into her driveway with her chin up and her lips set. Whirling around, she slammed the door as hard as she could. And then she screamed.

Her boyfriend leapt out of the car and caught her in his arms. "What is it? What's wrong?" he shouted. Then he saw it. A bloody hook hung from the handle of the passenger-side door.



Sunday, May 2, 2010

Three-Six-Five

I haven't been too chatty lately, so I will just share some photos. I'm really loving this 365 challenge.


This is looking into the window of the local elementary school.

This is one of my favorites. The post processing, of course, gives it an old feel, but I also think the lady looks like she could have stepped out of the 70's. I loved the 70's, btw!

This one is priceless! How did he miss the sign?

This is my baby. Hard to believe he will soon be 13. Wow!

Another one with a 70's feel.

Old fire truck in downtown Locust Grove.

This car looks like Andy and Barney's!


This is my grandparents old house in Woolsey.

Unusual angle of a see saw. Whenever I see a see saw, I always remember jumping off and letting the other persons butt slam on the ground. Ha! Y'all did that too right??

I just liked the angels in this one.

This is from my first Jimmy Buffett concert. I painted my friend's "party bus" on all sides. I think this is the only decent picture of the night. I can't imagine why! We had so much fun!

Just random people hanging out on a Sunday afternoon.