Jalapeno Hush Puppies | Dishin & Dishes

Jalapeno Hush Puppies | Dishin & Dishes

At any given time, my husband could show up at our house with just-caught catfish.  Or, our freezer in the garage could have an entire shelf dedicated to frozen fish he’s pulled in from one of our Oklahoma lakes.

One night this summer, early on before the water all dried up, We cut up a giant catfish he’d caught and went outside to fry it up.  There aren’t too many evenings in the Wonderful household that we fry anything.  But fresh caught catfish lightly breaded in some cornmeal and spices is wondrous all by itself…

Or with Hush Puppies.

I had no idea how easy they were to make at home.

First you have to bring a large pot of oil to 365º. Or, if you have one of those neat deep-fryer things, use that.  I would love but..

#1 My hips would NOT love it and are crying out for more treadmill time.

#2  I have no idea where it would fit in my kitchen cupboards which are already crying out for more room.

A large heavy pot works just fine as a substitute.  We used canola oil but you could use vegetable oil as well.

In a large mixing bowl, dump in one and one-half cups of cornmeal, one-half cup of flour, one teaspoon of baking powder, and a tablespoon of sugar. Also in 1/4 cup of finely chopped onion and one large jalepeno chopped fine.  I removed the seeds and ribs from  the jalapeno by scraping them out with a spoon tip after I cut the pepper in half.  My family are spice pansies and they wouldn’t like things TOO hot.  But you can leave them in if you like.

Don’t worry! The addition of jalapenos are not too hot here! It just lends a nice little kick to your hush puppies.

In a separate bowl, crack two eggs and add 1/2 cup of milk, whisk it together.

Dump it right into the other stuff you added to the large bowl.

Mix this all up.

And then decide to be really brave and add in 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper into the mix. I PROMISE YOU! It’s not too hot. I’m a real wimp when it comes to spicy and I loved these.

This all came together in about one minute or less.  How easy is that?

Now, take a teaspoon or a cookie dough scoop and scoop up some of the dough.

Be very careful and hold the scoop or spoon down close to the oil and gently drop the batter into the oil.


And then continue to keep doing just like you did with the first one.  We did about 10 at one time.  Be careful not to add too many so your oil doesn’t cool down too quickly.

And let these go and bubble away.

Pretty soon, they float to the top and get nice and golden brown.

This will take about two to two and one-half minutes.At this point, scoop  them out with a slotted spoon.

And dump them gently into a paper towel-lined plate or bowl.  Mr. Wonderful used this cooling rack.

Look at those little darlings would you!?

If you want to, sprinkle them with a little salt while they’re fresh out of the oil.  Then make another batch until the batter is all gone.

Your family will be watching with baited breath.

Okay, that little guy may actually have fish bait breath..but still, he KNOWS what’s good!

Next time you fry up some fish, try these semi-spicy little balls of crispy goodness alongside your catch.  The traditional way to eat them is to break them open and spread them with a touch of butter, but I like them just like this.

Jalapeno Hush Puppies



  • 1½ c. cornmeal
  • ½ c. flour
  • 1 T. sugar
  • 1 t. baking powder
  • 1 t. salt
  • ¼ c. onion, chopped fine
  • 1 jalapeno, (large, chopped fine)
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ c. milk
  • ½ t. cayenne pepper
  • 4 c. oil, (peanut, vegetable or canola)
  1. Bring large pot of oil to 365º or heat up deep fryer. In a bowl, whisk eggs and milk until thoroughly mixed. In a large bowl mix together cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, onion and jalapeno with a whisk. Add wet ingredients to dry and mix well. Drop with cookie dough scoop (small size) into hot oil until they float and are dark golden brown (about 2½ minutes). Remove with slotted spoon to paper towel lined plate. Sprinkle with salt again if desired while still hot.


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Lemon Cheesecake Muffins with Lemon Curd


Close your eyes and let me paint you a picture in your mind…a slightly tart lemony muffin.  As you bite into it, you also get a creamy surprise, for in the center lies a soft, gooey, cheesecake-like filling. And accompanying both flavors, a cool, sweet-n-tart lemon curd for each delicious bite.

These muffins were so yummy.  Served with a spoonful of lemon curd, they were wonderful.

Before I show you how to make them, let me give you a little tip about baking with lemon zest.

I started with one tablespoon of lemon zest and one cup of sugar.

Put them into a bowl.


Take your fingers and begin to smoosh the lemon zest with the sugar.

See, the real punch of flavor you get from the lemon zest is from the oil in the peel.  When you begin to rub it with the sugar, it releases the oils from the zest into the sugar and intensifies the lemon flavor.  Your bowl will begin to smell marvelous.


Dump your newly made “lemon sugar” into your mixing bowl with 6 tablespoons of butter.

Beat it until light and fluffy and then add 2 eggs.


Continue to beat until smooth and creamy.

In a separate bowl, measure out 1 1/2 cups of flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon of baking powder.


Give it a fluff with your whisk.

Measure out 1/2 cup of buttermilk.  If you don’t have buttermilk, fill your 1/2 cup with 1 tablespoon of vinegar, fill it with regular milk, and let it set for 5 minutes.  It will work as a substitute.

Alternate adding the flour mixture and buttermilk to your sugar/butter mixture.



When you’ve added all of both, you’ll have a nice smooth creamy batter.


Take an ice cream scoop and spray it with cooking spray.  Also spray your muffin tins with cooking spray, or line them with muffin liners.


Scoop your ice scream scooper about half full and drop into the tins.



In another bowl, mix together 1/2 package of an 8 oz. cream cheese with 1/4 cup powdered sugar.


Spoon into a Ziploc baggie.


Seal the bag and using scissors, snip off one corner.


Squeeze a little dollop of your cream cheese filling into the center of each muffin batter.



Place into a 350º oven for about 15 minutes.  Stick a fork into one muffin, to one side of the filling and see if it comes out clean.  Leave in a few minutes longer, if need be, and check again.

Remove and cool.


Are you getting excited yet?

Serve one on a plate with a dollop of my Fuss-Free Lemon Curd and a nice cup of hot tea or coffee.



Have a bite of this wondrous creation.  It’s fabulous.


We took these to our class this Sunday, and didn’t even bring home one!

Cooking with Love,


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Mom’s German Light Rye Bread


You may remember my Mom’s Strawberry Jam recipe from last week.  I promised the bread recipe to go along with it.  Mom makes this every time she comes.  This recipe makes 4 of the smaller size bread loaves (I think they’re the 7 x 3 inch ones).  One demands to be sliced immediately and the other  three go into freezer bags to be savored for later.  We space out eating the other three as treats when we feel a need for something special until Mom returns to make it again!

The bread.  

This is a German light rye loaf that is soft and dense inside while the outside is crusty and yummy.  You can get the light rye flour from your local bakery or sometimes find it right at the grocery store.  This recipe has been handed down from one German-Russian to another.  My Mom came in possession of it years ago and makes it quite often.  When this bread is baking, my kids and Mr. Wonderful keep drifting into the kitchen to see if it’s ready to eat yet.  Someone inevitable pulls the freshly made strawberry jam and butter out in preparation for when the piping hot fresh loaves  come out of the oven.  Mom rubs them with water and lets them cool a bit, which makes us all the antsier!  This makes the crust extra-crispy for whatever reason, and it’s so delicious!  

Follow along with me as mom makes this delectable bread!

Begin by finding  a really HUGE bowl.  You will need it.  Mix together – 4 cups lukewarm water, 1 package of quick-rising yeast, 2 cups light rye flour and 4 cups of bread flour.  Mix with a strong spoon until all ingredients are mixed together well.  


It will be rather soupy at this point.  Cover with a clean tea towel and allow to sit six hours or overnite. 

When we pulled the towel off the next morning, this is what the “sponge” looks like.  The mixture should have puffed up and have what appears to be sponge holes in it. 


Now we added 2 tablespoons of salt  and 6 more cups of bread flour to the “sponge”.  



We don’t usually measure with plastic baggies.  Mom brought all the ingredients pre-measured with her.  She even brought the pans, scraper and salt….

 Now she mixed again, but this time with her hands (put a little cool water on them first)  until the dough began to pull away from the sides of the bowl into a nice lump of dough.  Knead it for a minute.  


Eventually this is what you want.


Cover this once again with your towel and let raise until it doubles in size.  This takes a couple of hours.

Now you probably need to wash your hands and dust your counter with bread flour. See that white scraper? This is very handy to scrape the dough out of the pan onto the counter.


Take your loaf pans, spray them with cooking spray, and sprinkle some flour in them as well. This keeps the bread from sticking to the pan.  


Have a little bowl of cool water handy and nearby. 


 Dump your dough out onto your floured counter top.


Dip your hands into the cool water from your bowl.  Using a large knife, cut your dough into four equal parts.  Mom says to dip the knife into the water also for easy cutting.


Wet your hands again.  Take one of your portions of dough.  Using your hands, mold your lump of dough into a oval loaf that will fit nicely in your pan.  Rub cool water over the top of the loaf before placing into the pan. This will make a nice smooth top and also helps make it crusty.


Place your bread into the pan.  


 Shake your bread lengthwise a couple of times in the pan to evenly distribute the dough in the pan and level it out.  Follow these steps for your other three loaves.

Put your pans away from drafts.  I think mom put hers in the oven to rise this time.  Let sit for another hour or so until the dough rises and puffs above the top of the pans.


Bake your bread loaves at 375° for 55 minutes to one hour.    Remove from the oven and again, lightly rub with the cold water.  


Carefully turn out of your pans.  


I wish you could smell this…or taste it.  

But wait.  Remember this?



You will need this to go alongside of your bread.  It’s like salt and pepper or soprano and alto…they just GO together!  Mom also brings Amish rolled butter from northern Michigan with her to go with the bread and jam.

And to accompany the German theme, I put them on the cutting board my German Grandpa Alex made me when I was little.  You can see where he scrawled my name across it using a “y” instead of an “ie” for Katie.  He used to call me Kucha actually in German, but I have no idea how to spell that properly!


It is the perfect serving board for the perfect bread.  



And, this is the perfect snack for morning, noon and even a late night treat before bed.  If you take the time to make this recipe, it’ll be a keeper!


Katie’s Printable Recipe – Homemade German Light Rye Bread

Katie’s Printable Recipe – Mom’s Strawberry Freezer Jam

Cooking with Love


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Iced French Vanilla Coffee | Dishin & Dishes

Iced French Vanilla Coffee | Dishin & Dishes

My Mom brought me this recipe when she came to visit recently from Michigan.  I think she got it from my cousin Diane.  Here are my cousins Karen, Diane and I last week in Michigan.  We had such a nice time together.  I miss my cousins.

I love iced coffee in the hot days of summer.  You probably remember this version that I made earlier in the year.  And currently we are over 20 straight days of 100 plus temperatures here in Oklahoma City, so what a great time to finally make it!  This gives you a nice coffee punch of caffeine for your day, but doesn’t leave you sweating. 

To begin, you’ll need to brew some double strength coffee.  To do so, you can do one of two things.  You can either put twice the amount of coffee grounds you normally use into your coffee filter and brew your coffee like normal. 

 Or you can make some espresso.

I opted for the strong coffee route.

Brew your coffee and then pour it into a large mixing bowl.


Add in cups of sugar.

Add in one teaspoon of vanilla extract.

And also add in 1 pint or 2 cups of half and half.

And  1 quart or 4 cups of milk.


Stir this all together really well and then you’ll need to freeze it. 

You can either dip it out with a small pitcher.


On second thought…if you have a large glass measuring bowl with a spout (like the 8 cup one I have and forgot about), that would be really nice to pour into the baggie.  But I realized this too late and had to make life difficult on myself.  So you could pour some of this into a freezer bag.


Zip it up and pop it into the freezer.


Or, you can do another way, a way I greatly preferred.  Pour it into a freezer container. 


Pop on the lid..




I really preferred this way of the two because…

#1  it was really hard to balance the wobbly liquid freezer bag to stand upright on the freezer shelf and I was worried about it leaking..and…

#2  Later on, when it came time to scoop the slushy liquid out, it was much easier and less messy out of the container.

Imagine scooping ice cream out of a freezer bag instead of a container?

Let this freeze up for several hours or until it gets nice and semi-hard/slushy.  Then scoop it into glasses.

 This makes a lot of iced coffee…probably about 6-8 tall glasses full, so it’s great to make this ahead of time and enjoy a glass each day when you’re especially run-down and sweltering.

I made this a second time subsituting Splenda (the granules, not the packets) for the sugar.  Use the same amount – 2 cups of Splenda granules.  I also used skim milk and fat free half and half for the regular milk and half and half.

It was pretty doggone good.  If you’re watching your waistline…try it!

Katie’s Printable Recipe – Iced French Coffee



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Chai Tea to Make at Home

Chai Tea to Make at Home

Last year my daughter had the privilege of going to India for a 40 day mission trip. Their “team” stayed in a large house and had an Indian woman who took care of cooking for them and cleaning the house while they were there.

She made a huge pot of Chai tea for them each morning in a large pot on the stove and it was waiting for them when they came down from sleeping on the flat stone roof they went up to escape the heat of the uncooled downstairs rooms.

When she returned from India, she raved about the Chai tea and I wanted to try to recreate it.  Fortunately, we have an Indian Spice market down the street from us and we were able to (cheaply!) find everything we needed.

Now we make this in a large pot on our stove.  It is a creamy spiced tea made with milk and flavored with the heady scent of cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods, cloves and black peppercorns and sweetened up with a bit of honey or sugar.  The recipes for Chai are many.  Some include star anise, some ginger. It can be made a latte by adding some frothed milk on top.

Anyway you make it …it is delicious.  Here’s how we made ours.

Add 2 cups of water to a good-size pot.  Bring it to a boil.  Add in 3 cinnamon sticks, 6 cloves, and 6 whole black peppercorns.

If anyone knows the secret to getting black off the bottom of a Le Creuset pot once you’ve burnt something, please let me know how?

These might be unfamiliar to you.  Cardamom pods are either green (called Elettaria when they’re younger), or black or brown (called Amomum when they’re more aged). These obviously are green.

They actually belong to the ginger family and they’re pretty potent, like ginger is.  If you can find them whole like this…take four of them and smash them with the flat side of a large knife.

Inside will be some tiny little brownish black seeds…that’s the flavor baby.  Scoop them up, shells and all and toss them into your pot.


Take a knobby piece of fresh ginger and cut a thumb size piece off…Cut it into chunks.  Don’t even bother with peeling it. Just make sure you give it a good scrub first for dirt.

Toss it into the hot water as well.

Let this all steep for 20 minutes.  I’ll confess, I leave mine a lot longer – like an hour…I love everything strong..tea, coffee and the spices in Chai tea. It’s your preference though.

Pour it into a medium-size bowl through a strainer.

Then pour it back into the pot and return it to the stove and bring it to a simmer again.

This time remove it from the heat and add 4 black tea bags or 3 tablespoons of loose leaf black tea (I got this which Kayla says was what they used in India at our Spices of India market).  Ceylon is good as well.

Bring it back to a simmer…then tie 4 black tea bags together for easy lifting.

Wrap them around a spoon handle to be able to remove them easily and set them into the hot liquid to steep again -but this time only for 5 minutes.

Remove the tea bags after 5 minutes and pour in 2 cups of milk.  Slowly heat it up, but don’t get it to a boil this time…just steaming hot.  Add in 3 tablespoons of sugar and taste.  Add more if you desire greater sweetness.  You can also add honey instead, as they do in parts of India.

Stir it up and then ladle it into cups.  It should be pretty hot but not bubbling.

If you are lucky enough to have a frother, froth up some milk and pour it on top…that’s a Chai Tea Latte…but I like to just sip it out of a cup.

Katie’s Printable Recipe – Homemade Chai Tea

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Blueberry Lemonade Smoothie | Dishin & Dishes

Blueberry Lemonade Smoothie | Dishin & Dishes

Quick refreshing smoothie for summertime.

Ingredients of Love:

ingredPlain vanilla yogurt, frozen lemonade concentrate, fresh or frozen blueberries, milk, ice, honey and lemon zest (optional)

Mix in your blender or smoothie maker:]

2 cups blueberries

3 T. frozen lemonade

1/2 cup yogurt

1 cup milk

3-4 cups of ice

1 T. honey

1 t. lemon zest

Throw all in a blender and blend until smooth!

Enjoy! SO refreshing for a summer day!

Blueberry on Foodista

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Strawberry Scone Bread | Dishin & Dishes


If you like the texture and not-too-sweet flavor of scones, this bar is for you.  But it’s without all the fuss of dolloping out dough or cutting dough into cute little scone shapes with cookie cutters.  This is a no-fuss scone type bread recipe that will give you the flavor of fresh strawberries and the density of a scone.

I made this last week on the same day I made my  Blueberry Crumble Bread Bars, and it really didn’t get a fair shake.  The Blueberry Bars were full of sugar and goodness and these are more of a tea and crumpet fair.  I also put it under the broiler for a few minutes at the end so as to brown up the crumb topping.

Me and broilers don’t mix very well.  I walked away for a minute, (I swear!) and the top got a few little black spots I then had to scrape off…

The thing you don’t know about us food bloggers is the chaos that sometimes ensues in our kitchen behind the camera.

Yes, food bloggers are human too.  We just fool you real well.

Now that I’ve thoroughly disallusioned you on me being perfect, let me show you how to make these elegant bars.

Begin by taking 2 cups of strawberries and chopping them up fine.  Put them into a bowl.

Pour 2/3 cup of sugar over them.


Give them a good stirring around and set a timer for exactly 5 minutes.  Let them sit.


While your timer ticks away, do the following.  Measure out 4  cups of  flour.  Add in 2 tablespoons of baking powder and 1 teaspoon of salt.


Turn your mixer on, and give your dry ingredients a quick fluff.

When your timer goes, off, pour one cup of heavy whipping cream into a separate bowl or measuring cup.  Add 2 eggs and 1 teaspoons vanilla.  Mix this up good.


Pour this mixture over your strawberry/sugar mixture.


Stir the 2 together well.


Add your strawberry mixture into your dry ingredients, a little a time.  Also add 1/3 cup of melted butter (not pictured).


Mix just until all the ingredients are well-blended.


Just look at those lovely bits of fresh strawberries! Yum..

Spread mixture into a 9 x 13 lightly greased pan.


Make your crumb topping.

Mix 2/3 cup of flour, 1/2 c pecans, 1/2 cup sugar 3/4 cup of butter and 1 teaspoon cinnamon until crumbs form.  I used a pastry cutter, but you could use forks or even your fingers.


Please try to get your bowl as messy as I did and the counter as well.

Thank you.

Now sprinkle your crumb mixture all over the top of your dough.


Put into a 375º oven for 30 minutes.  Check center with a toothpick or fork to see if it comes out clean.  If not, continue to bake until it does.  Top should be golden brown.

Enjoy these strawberry treats some morning when you feel like a cup o’ tea and some scones..you’ll say MMmmmm…


Katie’s Printable Recipe – Strawberry Scone Bread Bars

Cooking with Love,


Cream Scones on Foodista

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Poppyseed Muffins | Dishin & Dishes


Every once in awhile, I like to post one of these super-easy, nothing-to- it recipes that even a beginner can handle with no problem.  This is one of those recipes. That way, my old high-school friend Lisa won’t accuse me of being a Martha Stewart wannabe. Seriously, I’m not even close.  Do you hear me? Not EVEN!

If you only saw my life on a daily basis, the flour on my nose and shirt, the weeds in my garden, no one would ever accuse me of that again.

Actually, most recipes aren’t that difficult if you just enjoy it. But sometimes, you just don’t feel like cooking for a long time…or baking.

Saturday night, I knew I needed to make something for our class Sunday morning.  Unfortunately, it was almost midnight. And did I mention that I sent Mr. Wonderful out at 11:40 PM looking for coconut cream pudding for this recipe?

And that, my friends, is why I call him Mr. Wonderful.

Cuz he went.

And then later, he confessed that he really wanted to go to the Wal-Mart anyway to look at fishing lures.  BUT, he got my pudding…at another store, cuz Wal-Mart didn’t carry it.

I needed something quick, something with out a lot of fuss but it had to be something good.

These muffins came to mind.  A treat from the past, my mom used to make these as a quick bread, but somewhere along the line, they evolved into muffins.

Super moist and dense, they are a pleasant surprise to bite into.  The moistness comes from a packet of pudding and ….

Cake mix.

C’mon now, what is muffin batter anyway but flour, sugar, salt….all the ingredients in, YES, cake mix!

Throw a few simple ingredients into your mixing bowl and a mere minute later you’re pouring the smooth batter into bread or muffin tins. Try this recipe, you won’t be sorry!

Katie’s Printable Recipe- Poppyseed Muffins

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Pumpkin Scones with Pumpkin Spice Icing

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Sunday morning I took these pumpkin scones to our marriage class.  My kids were not very happy with me.  You see, I let them taste them the night before.  They were most distressed to learn that was the only one they were getting.

I’m going to have to make these again real soon to bring peace back to my household.

I am not a big fan of hard scones.  I like ones that have more of a softer give.  More cake-like.  These fit the bill perfectly, and if you love the flavors of pumpkin pie?

You’re going to love these.

First for your dry ingredients. Dump the following into a mixing bowl. 2 cups of flour, 1/3 cup brown sugar, and 2 teaspoons baking powder.

Also add 1/2 teaspoon of the following:
Cloves,Cinnamon, Ground Ginger, Nutmeg,  and Salt

Mix up the dry ingredients real good with a whisk.

Now take 1/2 stick of very cold or frozen butter.  Sigh…of course I’m doubling this, so pay no attention to my incorrect pictures, as usual.  HEY! Adults eat a LOT of scones on Sunday morning!

Cut your butter  into thin slices.


With a pastry cutter or 2 sharp knives, begin to cut your butter into the dry mixture.  Do not let a pastry cutter intimidate you.  It’s actually quite therapeutic.


You should start to see your butter and flour mixture begin to form little chunks about the size of peas.

Grab a new medium-size bowl.  Scoop in  1/2 cup of canned pumpkin.  To this add 1/2 cup of heavy cream.  Whisk them smoothly together.


Now crack one egg into a bowl. Whisk it with a fork.  Mix it into your pumpkin/cream mixture.


Now you’re going to take your pumpkin mixture or wet ingredients and add them slowly, a little at a time into your dry mixture.  Not too much! Just until everything is mixed thoroughly.  I used my dough hook, but this dough is wet enough, you could probably use your paddle as well.


When you’re done, you’ll have a pretty stick wet dough so I’d recommend spraying your hands with baking spray to handle it.

There are a couple different ways to cut scones.  Either way you use, place  your shaped dough form into the freezer for about 15 minutes to ensure even cutting and firming the butter back to its coldest form.

First, the round method.  Plop your dough onto a lined baking sheet or pizza stone that’s been sprayed.  Mound the center higher than the outsides edges of the dough.


After chilling for 15 minutes, cut with a pizza cutter into 8 wedges.  You can make them thinner if you like.


Or you can make a rectangular shape on a regular baking sheet.  I would aim for 3 inches wide unless you want really large scones.


Take your pizza cutter and cut lines across the width of the dough.  Then cut those squares in half diagonally.


I tried both and really favored the rectangular piece for ease of cutting, but liked the shapes of the wedges from the round one better. Next time I would make the rectangular piece longer and thinner as the pieces were humongous.

Whichever way you choose, make sure you lift your pieces with a spatula and pull them apart so all the pieces can bake around all sides.


Put your pan into your oven on the center rack and bake for 15 minutes.  They should be just starting to brown and when you stick a fork or toothpick into the  the center of the largest one , it should come out  clean and not wet at all.

Remove from the oven to cool.

While they’re baking, make your frosting.

Sift a cup of powdered sugar into a bowl.


Add 1 tablespoon of your canned pumpkin.

Add 1/4 teaspoon of each:

cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, ground ginger


I probably should have cleaned up that bowl before I took a picture, but we like to keep it real here in Reality Kitchen and those sifter thingies are hard to tame.

Begin to drizzle some more of your heavy cream into the powdered sugar mixture.  Whisk all the ingredients together until very smooth.  You’re looking for the consistency of molasses here.


Now, for those of you without a sweet tooth, you will be absolutely satisfied with a warm scone and a cup of tea.


But for those of you who want a little bit more…shall we say…SPECIAL?

Pour yourself a warm mug of cider or coffee and spread on the spiced frosting.


Lord have mercy…

Katie’s Printable Recipe- Pumpkin Scones with Pumpkin Spice Icing

Cooking with Love,

Pumpkin on Foodista
Pumpkin Scones on Foodista

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