Sandi is blogging from the WhistleStop Cafe kitchen. It's all about good home cooking; food, family and fun. Thousands of posts . . .

~In the south and around the world.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Elvis style breakfast

This is the way to start the day~ Elvis style!
Elvis loved peanut butter and banana sandwiches.

These was a great breakfast before we hit the beach... we needed a lot of energy to lay in the shade. Ok... I was laying in the shade~ for some, there was sunshine, a game of frisbee football, some kites to chase, and sand castles to build.
Energy in a peanut butter, banana bite
Peanut Butter~Banana Muffins
1/3 cup butter
4 Tbs peanut butter
3 bananas
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 pinch salt
Preheat oven to 350°
In a large mixing bowl combine butter, peanut butter and bananas. Microwave for 30 seconds to soften or allow to sit out until soft. Mix in sugar until smooth. Whip in egg and vanilla. Stir in dry ingredients and mix until blended. Pre spray muffin tins and fill with batter. Bake for 30-35 minutes. The large tins make really BIG muffins. Add pecans if you'd like~ I always have to do half & half.
Thank you,
Thankyou verrymuch,

This post was featured on Photograzing!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Lost Recipes???

Last night I spent an hour looking for this recipe that my sister gave me. Does that drive you crazy??

Now I am going to post it where I will always know where it is. I have all my recipes on the side bar... I may never have to publish another cookbook. Now if I would just throw away that stack of newspaper clippings and magazine recipes.

This Spicy Thai Bowl is a favorite with chicken or shrimp... perfect to use up some leftovers.

Spicy Thai Bowl
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 cup LIGHT coconut milk
3 Tbs red curry paste
juice from a fresh lime
1 Tbs grated ginger
1-2 cups fresh steamed green beans
1/2 red pepper cut into strips
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
lime wedges for garnish
1 store-roasted chicken shredded (2 cups meat)
2 cups cooked rice

In a deep saucepan over low heat, whisk together chicken broth, coconut milk, lime juice and curry paste. Add ginger, shredded chicken and steamed green beans. Cook until heated. Stir in cilantro and serve mixture over rice with a lime wedge. You will love this! It is so simple and yet so tasty.
Now... to clean out that recipe drawer~
Y'all enjoy!

Sunday Salad Samplers

For the past several months, I have joined my friends at Slow Travel posting salad recipes. A group of us from all over the world have joined in making a different salad every week. We have used every imaginable ingredient to make a salad... some I'll admit were a stretch for this southern cook!
The recipes are all on my sidebar (along with ALL the recipes on this blog), but here is a list...

I missed a few salads while I was in Italy, and another while at the beach. It is hard to keep up with this cooking crowd! We agreed to allow time off for travel~ we do love our travels.

Our gang of Slow Cookers have baked from Dolce Italiano, we scooped from The Perfect Scoop, we made soups through the winter and salads through the summer.
Now we are starting a new venture... this includes using a secret ingredient each week. This will be perfect as we come into football/holiday party season. Email me if you want to join in!

Next Sunday starts the Small Bites and our secret ingredient is Shrimp! Everyone will post a different recipe~ we'll have lots of recipes to share.

Y'all stay tuned!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Photohunt ~surprise

The photohunt for this week is 'surprise'
Every sunrise leads to a surprise. Who knows how the day will unfold?
Happy hunting y'all~

Thursday, August 27, 2009


When we are at the beach, one of our family traditions is to make our annual family photos.

Doug and Brad have decided that we may have to many family traditions!
We try to coordinate and plan for the perfect lighting and location. It rarely works... but we try! This year the color was white~
We obviously have some good genes.
Don't y'all agree?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Great Pancake Cook-off

While we were all at the beach, we decided to have a pancake cook-off. Not any pancake cook off... but The Great Perdido Pancake Cook-off. We were hoping that our Dad would be the ultimate judge (he has the most experience with pancakes), but unfortunately he wasn't able to make it.
I knew ahead and packed accordingly. I planned to make my sourdough pancakes (knowing dad is partial to sourdough). I put the sourdough starter in a zip loc bag and packed the dry ingredients separately. A little butter and Aunt Jemima on top and they were fantastic.

My sister was a little more sneaky... I should have known when she was buying a pancake MIX, chocolate chips, coconut and almonds. I think her secret was the light Aunt Jemima syrup- at least that kept us from all going into a sugar coma. Her almond joy pancakes were announced the winner.
I hate to loose!
Just wait till next year...

Sunday, August 23, 2009

I have a story that will make you Smile!

I have a story to tell... (I'll try to keep it short since I'm sure you are at work and the boss is going to be looking over your shoulder)

Y'all know we have spent the week at the beach in Perdido with my family from ALL over. It has been fabulous!
My daughter's boyfriend pulled us aside mid- week and asked for my blessings for them to marry.
In a rush of tears, I told him the story of the diamond ring that I had worn for 30 years, my mom had worn for 30 years before me, and my grandmother and great grandmother had worn for years before that. I gave him the ring ~after making it clear that this ring stays in the family~ and our blessings. It is a precious day when you know that your daughter has met the man who will love her, and protect her for the rest of their lives.
So... now I am empty fingered (we all know what a huge problem that would be) and trying to keep the secret. I wandered into a gift shop at Zeke's, one that I can remember going into years ago with Mom when she was struggling with breast cancer. It was always one of our favorite beach shops, and in our last trip there together she had bought special musical snow globes for her granddaughters. I cherish that memory. I wandered around and in the display of fabulous CZ's... is MY RING! Well, not exactly~ but close enough. There is a large 'diamond' in the center with one on either side. Perfect fit!! I quickly filled the empty spot on my finger.

2 days later, after dinner at a local restaurant and a romantic walk on the dock, he presented her the ring and popped the question. After they made it home, we all toasted with prosecco. She hadn't even realized that I had given away my ring.
The ring needs a little sizing, and had I known I was passing it on I would have cleaned out the pizza dough before we headed to the beach. It has a new home for another 30 years or so.
Now I am really going to have to pay attention to Kat's wedding plans~ opps I mean Kat's daughter's wedding plans~

Y'all stay tuned!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Photohunt~ ripples

The photohunt for this week is 'ripples'.Claudette left some ripples in the red flags,There are ripples in the sand and ripples in the waves.
Just another day in Paradise~
Happy hunting y'all!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Rookie

While we were having a girly day, the rest of the gang went deep sea fishing. 'The Rookie' proved to be no rookie, and Brady the deck hand showed them the ropes.
They were out 35 miles in the gulf, and had some wild stories to tell.
They had a great time... some did fishing, and unfortunately some were feeding the fish from below the deck.
Brady cleaned the fish for us and we had a mix of trigger, amberjack, and mackerel. The second night of 'kids cook' was a success.

Y'all have a beachy day!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


We took a break from the beach and met up with Just a Beach Kat and her lovely friend Linda in the city. Pensacola is a quick drive from Perdido, and we planned the perfect girls day with a little shopping at Duh!, and Celebrations, then lunch at The Fish House. Duh! is such a fabulous place~ they do a great job of mixing rustic and glitzy.We all enjoyed a big plate of Shrimp and Grits Ya-Ya, as Kat said to.dye.for!
We talked girl talk, Italy travels, and heard all about Kathy's upcomming wedding... we just have an automatic connection. We missed Bill and George (a tiny bit)

It was perfect~ because it gave Holly and I a reason NOT to go deep sea fishing. I promised to cook up any thing they brought in... once it resembled the seafood I get in the market.

I wonder what's for dinner??
Y'all have a beachy day~

Monday, August 17, 2009

This is what it is all about...

Sometimes do you wonder 'what's it all about' (Alphie)???

This week is the perfect example of why we work, and save throughout the year.

This is the week our whole family is getting together at the beach. I can't say that without knowing how thrilled my Mom would be to be there sharing with us.
We used to do this every year while we had babies, tots and then teens. It gets harder as we get more spread out. The kids are grown, so it has been more of an effort to arrange flights and rental cars. We managed to get everyone in~ from London, Boston, Charlotte, and Alabama.
I am as happy as a Momma duck in water. This is our family photo from several years ago. There are a few new smiling faces this year~ so we will be gathering for a 'casual' snapshot one evening on the beach. Thank goodness Claudette just breezed on through, she was not a welcome guest!
We are having the great pancake cook-off, some deep sea fishing, and a domino throw down. Our new tradition is that everyone is in charge of one meal (appetizers and drinks expected!!) Guess who came up with that idea...
I'll be posting when I can.
Y'all come along too~

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Potato Salad Sunday

It was my week to pick the Sunday Salad Sampler. This has been a tough decision. Everyone has a family favorite potato salad. This recipe is a combination between the southern potato salad with hard boiled eggs and the German mustard potato salad that is served warm. Call me indecisive!

I'll just call it a southern mustard potato salad.
Southern Mustard Potato Salad
1-2 pounds potatoes
4-5 hard boiled eggs
1 sweet onion, diced
1/2 cup diced celery
1/4 cup pickle relish
3 Tbs spicy mustard
1/2 cup mayo
Clean potatoes then boil them whole. Once tender, 15-20 minutes, remove from heat and allow to cool. Dice onion and celery. Dice potatoes into large chunks. In another bowl whisk together mayo, mustard and pickle relish. Add kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste. Stir all ingredients together. Finally, slice peeled hard boiled eggs and stir those in as well. Serve warm or cold.
It'll be fun to see what everyone else will post this week. They can use my suggestion, or come up with one of their own. Check out the other Sunday Salad Samplers and their fun 'Travel' blogs..

Jerry's Rants!
Baked Alaska
Churches in Venice
Happy Trails To Us
Keep Your Feet in the Street
My Place in the Sun
Old Shoes-New Trip
PalmaBella's Passions
A Winelover's Wanderings

Y'all enjoy!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Photohunt ~Artificial

The photohunt for this week is 'artificial'

Do y'all use artificial sweetners?
I painted a kitchen stool with a little splenda for my cup 'o Jo.
Can you smell the coffee?

Happy hunting y'all!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Shhhh~ it's our secret

I really hate to even be posting all of this...
because for years Perdido Florida has been our own little secret. It has been out of the rush of traffic that heads to Destin, Orange Beach and Panama City, just off the beaten path. In the past several years it has really started to bloom~ new grocery stores, new restaurants, new condos.

While progress is good, and they are doing a beautiful job; I will miss the quiet beaches of years ago.
I guess we'll just have to come back again in October!
Maybe one day I will grow up to be a 'snow bird'!
In the mean time we'll have a bushwacker for y'all,

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The joy of Creme Brulée

Lisa at Champaign Taste is hosting a Julia Child event! This is in celebration of what would have been her birthday, it is also just in time for all the movie hype. I am joining in with a Creme Brulée in honor of the one and only Julia Child. In Julie's Blog~ The Julie/Julia Project, she describes her experience making Creme Brulée. Julia Child's recipe is actually for Creme Anglaise, which is really similar to what we know as Creme Brulée.

This is a basic and simple recipe for Creme Brulée adapted from that Creme Anglaise... Julia loved the idea of firing up her blowtorch to caramelize a Creme Brulée. I don't have a blowtorch, so I just browned mine under the broiler. Not as exciting~ but it works.
Creme Brulée
2 cups heavy cream
4 egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract (or vanilla beans)
zest from one orange
3 Tbs sugar to topping
In a sauce pan heat cream until bubbly, but do not boil . Stir in extract or vanilla beans and orange zest and remove from heat to steep for 30 minutes to absorb the flavors. In another bowl, whisk egg yolk and slowly add sugar until it forms a thick ribbon. Slowly incorporate the hot cream into the yolks, being careful to bring the temperature of the yolks up slowly. Stir all the yolks and cream together, incorporate without making a lot of bubbles. When pouring the creme into small ramekins, pour through a small strainer to catch any bits of orange peel or egg yolk. Place the bowls in a 9x13 baking dish and fill partially with water to create a water bath. Bake at 300° for 30-35 minutes. The custard should be set, but jiggle in the middle. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Store in the fridge until ready to serve.

Just before serving sprinkle the tops evenly with sugar (a mixture of granulated and brown sugar works well). Either caramelize the tops with a hand held torch or place under the broiler for 2-3 minutes until the sugar melts. Apparently Julia had no trouble making the custard, but found the torching process harder in her own little kitchen. She used a 30 foot hose and a welder's mask to torch the tops of her Creme Brulée. It is much easier now! Julia Child can be credited with that as well. I topped these with some simple blackberries. Perfection!

Bon appétit y'all!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Fajitas ~de nuevo

I am talkin' leftovers today.

How often do you end up with a collection of little butter dishes of leftovers after a dinner?

We had chicken fajitas, and I had a refrigerator stacked with small containers. That is how I first came up with this chicken salad... since then it has become a favorite. I have added lots of different things... olives, cheese, bacon, topped with sour cream. This is the basic recipe.
Fajita Salad
2 cups orzo, cooked
1 cup diced chicken
1 cup corn salsa
1/2 cup black beans
1/2 cup diced purple onion
1 cup diced tomatoes
1/4 cup minced cilantro or Italian parsley
Zest and juice from one lime
Cook the orzo until just done, not mushy. Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl. Toss to mix well.
The corn salsa I LOVE is from Trader Joe's... it is yummylicious! I stock up whenever I go. It is almost like a trip across the border.
Well, almost!
We are doing our cooking class tonight at Birmingham Bake and Cook... I'll let y'all know how it goes! Or~ maybe I'll see you there.
Y'all enjoy,

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Happy Holledayz!

Happy birthday to my favorite big sister!
Holly's blog is Everyday is a Holledayz! She blogs mostly, to keep us up with her coming and goings as she travels back and forth between London ad Boston. It is the best way for me to keep up with where to catch her on skype.
I can't go for long without a call to my sister... that hasn't changed over the years.
We will be spending the whole week together at the beach in Perdido. I can't wait.
We'll celebrate then!
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