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Southwest Grilled Chicken and Rice

Welcome to Our Sunday Café, we are pleased you stopped by for a visit. Today we are offering another delicious recipe from our kitchen. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did…

Like many, I use cooking as an outlet for creativity. Sometimes it works and what I have in my mind really does come alive in the final dish. And truthfully, sometimes it doesn't.......

However this time it did!

Southwest Grllled Chicken and Rice
Southwest Grilled Chicken and Rice

While there is a fair amount of cookbooks in this house, sometimes the creative bug takes over. I also like recipes that can be broken down into steps that are manageable as time permits.

This dish is a combination of marinated and grilled chicken, over creamy brown rice, finished in the oven. And it is so delicious, I hope you give it a try.

grab a fork, it is time for dinner

Southwest Grilled Chicken and Rice
by the seat of my pants!
serves 4-6

6 - 8 chicken thighs, skinned
1 bunch fresh cilantro, snap off excessive stem
2-4 T oil (use a mild oil, like avocado)
1 T vinegar
1 rounded t Penzy's Arizona Seasoning or dash of chili, cumin, and oregano
1 clove garlic, minced

Place cilantro, 2 T oil, vinegar, seasoning and minced garlic in a food processor. Pulse until cilantro is finely chopped. You may have to scrap down the sides of the processor bowl, use more oil if needed. You want a minced cilantro slurry, not a smooth sauce.



Place chicken and marinade in a plastic bag. Secure top of the bag after removing excess air. Gently knead the contents so that the chicken is coated well. Refrigerate until ready to grill the chicken, 24 to 48 hours. We grilled at the 48-hour mark and the flavor is wonderful.


Grill chicken to brown outside edges, however, it should not be completely cooked, as this dish is finished in the oven.

To finish:

Grilled chicken
3 c cooked rice, brown or white
1 c sour cream
1 small can diced mild chilies
1 large green bell pepper, roasted, skinned and de-seeded, diced
garlic salt
fresh ground pepper if desired
1 small bunch cilantro, remove excess stem and chopped
1 c mild cheddar cheese

Combine cooked rice, sour cream, chilies, and roasted bell pepper, garlic salt and pepper.


Place in the bottom of a 2 qt casserole dish.


Sprinkle with cilantro, then cheese. Arrange grilled chicken over rice mixture.


Bake at 350 degrees 35-45 minutes or until bubbly.


Serves 4 - 6
Serve with your favorite salsa if desired.

Enjoy!

Thank you for visiting Our Sunday Cafe, as always we appreciate your time when you visit and your wonderful comments! 

If you like what you see here, we would appreciate it if you told your friends (we would love more followers!), if not, tell us. Our goal is to share relevant information that you will use and enjoy. 


And now, it is very easy to sign up for
Our Sunday Cafe posts by email. You will find the form located in the left sidebar, thank you for subscribing!

this post shared with:
weekend cooking @ beth fish reads
motivation monday @ a life in balance
happiness is homemade @ mommy on demand
homemade mondays @ frugal by choice
hearth and soul @ april j harris
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Cream Cheese Banana Bread

Welcome to Our Sunday Café, we are pleased you stopped by for a visit. Today we are offering another delicious recipe from our kitchen. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did…

I made this bread for sharing at our Sunday dinner. It is delicious! Deliciously different, with or without walnuts. The recipe is great for our family as we have nut lovers and those that do not eat nuts. Any time a recipe results in two loaves, it is so easy to please everyone...This recipe will also adapt very well to whole grains baking.

Cream Cheese Banana Bread, with our without nuts.
Cream Cheese Banana Bread

Cream Cheese Banana Bread
adapted from: Mel's Kitchen Cafe
makes 2 loaves
350 degree oven

1 1/2 sticks butter (3/4 c)
1 8oz block cream cheese
1 1/2 c sugar

3 large bananas (1 1/2-2 c)
2 eggs
2 t vanilla

3 c flour - next time I will use a 50/50 mix of all purpose and whole grain flours
1 t baking soda
1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
1/2 t cinnamon
1/8 t nutmeg

1 T sugar
1/4 t cinnamon

1 c finely chopped walnuts if desired

Cream butter, cream cheese and sugar together until fluffy. Beat in eggs, bananas and vanilla. Next add flour through nutmeg. Mix well.

 Prepare 2 8X4 loaf pans. Place half the batter into one of the pans, combine the sugar and cinnamon, sprinkle over top of dough.

Add walnuts to remaining batter, mix gently, spread in loaf pan.

Bake 45-55 minutes, or until done in your oven. Let cool 5 minutes in the pans, turn out to cool completely.

Cream Cheese Banana Bread, equally delicious with or without nuts.
Cream Cheese Banana Bread, with and without nuts!

Enjoy!

Thank you for visiting Our Sunday Cafe, as always we appreciate your time when you visit and your wonderful comments! 

If you like what you see here, we would appreciate it if you told your friends (we would love more followers!), if not, tell us. Our goal is to share relevant information that you will enjoy and use for yourself and your family. 

You can also sign up for Our Sunday Cafe posts by email, thank you for subscribing!



this post shared with:
hearth and soul @ april j harris



6

Potato Soup, the starting point for many great meals

Welcome to Our Sunday Café, we are pleased you stopped by for a visit. Today we are offering another delicious recipe from our kitchen. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did…

More and more I think of ways to make a variety of different tasting foods, without cooking everything from scratch each evening. Yes I do think that sounds a lot like leftovers, but hear this idea first, if you will.

Commercial kitchens often times work from a master recipe, which means that while everything is cooked fresh, everything does not start from a scratch beginning. Simply because there is not enough time. That seems to remind me of our home, after the commute...........

When you are feeding lots of hungry people, you must make a lot of food, but still have variety. Enter the master recipe, with variations. Take this idea a step forward for small families and you have a very convenient way to make a new dinner, without starting from scratch each time you need to make a meal.

Potato Soup, the starting point for many great meals.
Potato Soup, the starting point for many great meals.

Let's start with a soup, potato soup to be precise. Potato soup is delicious as is, but it is like a blank slate, ready to take on a new personality at a moments notice.

Potato Soup
by the seat of my pants
makes approximately 1 Gallon

4 slices bacon, diced
1 medium onion, diced

3-4 ribs celery, diced
4 large potatoes, peeled and cubed
8 c bone broth or water
1 1/2 t salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T thyme leaves, crushed

1 large can evaporated milk
2-4 T flour - you can customize your kettle of soup, more flour if you like chowder over soup

In a large kettle, fry bacon until beginning to brown, remove most of the fat, add onions and continue to cook until bacon is golden and onions are softening.

Add remaining ingredients - celery though thyme, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer approximately 1 hour or until potatoes and celery are soft.

In a small bowl, whisk flour into the milk. Add to kettle and return to a boil, cook and stir until soup has thickened slightly. Adjust seasonings.


Soup may be enjoyed plain or frozen for future use. To freeze, place 4 cups soup in a freezer container, cover tightly and freeze. When ready to use, thaw in the refrigerator overnight.

Flavor Suggestions: For each 4 cup container of soup, add one of the following.

Tonight we are having clam chowder

Clam Chowder: add one 6 oz can of chopped clams, including juice. Simmer 5-10 minutes, serve.

Corn Chowder:  add one 16 oz can of drained corn. Simmer 5-10 minutes, serve.

Broccoli Cheese Soup:  cook 2 cups broccoli florets until barely tender. Drain well, add to soup base along with 1 c grated sharp cheese. Heat until cheese has melted, serve.

Vegetable Chowder:  Cook 2-3 cups of mixed vegetables (green beans, carrots and peas) until tender, drain well, stir into soup base, heat and serve. Garnish with chopped hard cook eggs.

Ham, White Bean and Potato Chowder: drain one 16 oz can cannelloni beans, stir into soup base along with 1/2 c diced ham. When heated through, serve with Parmesan Cheese.

Smoked Salmon and Roasted Red Pepper:  Stir 1/2 c broken pieces of smoked salmon and 1 diced roasted red pepper into soup base, heat gently, serve.

What would be your flavor additions?

Enjoy!

Thank you for visiting Our Sunday Cafe, as always we appreciate your time when you visit and your wonderful comments! 

If you like what you see here, we would appreciate it if you told your friends (we would love more followers!), if not, tell us. Our goal is to share relevant information that you will use and enjoy. 


And now, it is very easy to sign up for
Our Sunday Cafe posts by email. You will find the form located in the left sidebar, thank you for subscribing!


this post shared with:
natural family friday @ natural family today
weekend cooking @ beth fish reads
happiness is homemade @ mommy on demand


6

Today you can find us at Little House Living!

Welcome to Our Sunday Café, we are pleased you stopped by for a visit. 


What a great surprise, to find this post today!

Thank you, Merissa @ Little House Living. It was great fun to be selected for this interview and review of our home, our philosophy,  and how we garden.

Have a great day!

Thank you for visiting Our Sunday Cafe, as always we appreciate your time when you visit and your wonderful comments! 

If you like what you see here, we would appreciate it if you told your friends (we would love more followers!), if not, tell us. Our goal is to share relevant information that you will use and enjoy. 

And now, it is very easy to sign up for
Our Sunday Cafe posts by email. You will find the form located in the left sidebar, thank you for subscribing!


PS, you may also enjoy our Homemade Household page, it can be found right at the top of the blog!
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Water Keifer or I haven't given up on a delicious probiotic beverage....progress report.

Welcome to Our Sunday Café, we are pleased you stopped by for a visit. Today we are offering another delicious recipe from our kitchen. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did…



Much like growing rhubarb, the journey to produce an enjoyable probiotic beverage has been difficult. Why, I am not sure. Maybe it has been in the timing, such as waiting too long. Maybe it has been in the process, where I am not certain - due to lack of experience, what I should see or understand is happening.

I started with Kombucha. Things seemed to be progressing, and then what I discovered was that while I could grow a new SCOBY, I was not producing a drink that was drinkable. Which was the point. I did not want a gallon of anything tasting like it really should be thrown out......

Next I tried a ginger bug, and while I did get one batch of homemade ginger ale made, on the next batch the bug molded.

And now......

What this post is about is Water Keifer. For this project, I am thinking small. Real small as in a quart at a time. While I have been gathering information and recipes for this beverage, I wanted to start with simple. Simple and small.

The grains are easy to work with. They have a faint lemony smell once re-hydrated. I ordered the envelope of grains from Amazon. They arrived and were promptly safely stored away in the pantry until I could not ignore them any longer.


The first step is to re-hydrate the grains. This is the easy part, you only need 3 items.....

Water Keifer Grains
4 c water
4-6 T sugar

Combine and let sit 3-4 day. At that point you may start brewing or place the jar in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. Giving you the time needed to complete the next steps. The instructions also indicate that you should not let the grains re-hydrate past 5 days.

Well we I did.

I remembered that I had grains re-hydrating about day 6, so I drained them and discarded the liquid.

And then we started on making what I hope will be a drinkable beverage. Start at the beginning or with the base.

Water Keifer Base

drained grains
1/4 c sugar
4 c water
1 1/2 gallon mason jar with white storage cap

Place water and sugar in the jar, stir until sugar is mostly dissolved. Add grains, place cap on jar - but do not tighten. You may also use a cloth over the top if you prefer, the goal is to keep out anything other than water, sugar and grains.

Tasting update: The Keifer Tea is really good! 

On day 4 or 5 you need to complete the second step or ferment. I decided to make Keifer Tea.

1 c water
2-3 tea bags
1/4 c sugar
mason jar of grains and fermented water

Boil the water add the tea bags, let steep until lukewarm. Add sugar and stir gently, you don't want to break the tea bags, these will go into the jar along with the brewed tea.

Using a fine mesh strainer, drain the entire contents into a large glass bowl, through the strainer to catch the grains. Set grains aside.

In a clean jar, combine the brewed tea, and the fermented water. Let ferment for 3 days then remove tea bags and refrigerate for longer storage and while consuming.

Make a new base:

Using another clean jar, add the reserved grains, 1/4 c sugar and 4 c water. Let the new batch ferment 4-5 days, then be prepared to flavor for a second ferment.


I am going for a simple flavor on batch two. It will be flavored with pure vanilla extract. I am hoping for a creme soda-esque flavor.

We shall see...................

Imagine, this comes very easy to so many. I bet they grow rhubarb too.........

Enjoy!

Thank you for visiting Our Sunday Cafe, as always we appreciate your time when you visit and your wonderful comments! 

If you like what you see here, we would appreciate it if you told your friends (we would love more followers!), if not, tell us. Our goal is to share relevant information that you will use and enjoy. 


And now, it is very easy to sign up for
Our Sunday Cafe posts by email. You will find the form located in the left sidebar, thank you for subscribing!

this post shared with:
weekend cooking @ beth fish reads
homemade mondays @ frugal by choice
tuesdays with a twist @ back to basics
hearth and soul @ apriljharris.com
9

Did I tell you about my friend Barbara?

While not particularly well written, these are the stories about folks I have had the pleasure to know and serve, this is the story about Barbara.

When I first went to work at my present job, one of the folks I was to meet was Barbara. She was everywhere and she helped with anything, for anyone she noticed needing help or had asked for help.

Then through the years, not only did I enjoy her company as we crossed paths on a regular basis, but to asked for help myself! A few years later I wrote about Barbara, and highlighted the delicious cheese spread that she gave me that Christmas.

Working with and for Seniors, these moments will come. Those moments where one must say goodbye. Yesterday was that day. But I will always, remember this Barbara.......a special lady and friend.

and then there's Barbara! From January 10, 2011

I received a lidded food container for Christmas. It was filled with a buttery cheese spread, made by Barbara. The recipe for this delicious spread had been safely carried around by her, for years and years. She indicated to me when I made my copy, that the copy she held, had even survived a fire.

Now let me tell you, Barbara is a wonderful woman. She has worked hard her whole life and still in retirement works hard. She does all that she can for her neighbors in our little community and enjoys keeping her granddaughter before and after school. Like I said, busy busy busy.

Years ago Barbara worked at a restaurant call:

THE PANTRY
Portland's favorite restaurant-lounge...across from the Lloyd Center. 

She thought it was about 1958, and probably her first job as an adult. In those days the waitresses wore a uniform consisting of a short skirt with lots of petticoats, and a garter belt. That garter belt held a working cap gun.....

All dinner entrees came with creamed spinach, and if you did not eat your spinach the waitress got to "shoot" you with her cap gun. Yes ladies and gentlemen those were the days! I hear tell that even though creamed spinach was on every plate (yes, every plate). But the story goes that not every diner enjoyed it. Either that or they loved the fun that the waitresses had with the cap guns. Honestly, knowing the Barbara I know today, I'm pretty sure she had a fun time with that cap gun as well.

The Pantry closed many years ago, but it must have been a popular restaurant. You can find a copykat recipe for their Chicken Bisque Soup,  here.

You are looking at a very poor scan of the copy I have.....

But this story is about Barbara and the delicious cheese spread. Since being given that little container of cheesy goodness, I have come up with a lot of reasons to have bread with my dinner. It is that good. But don't stop there, it would also be wonderful as a topping for a baked potato, or tossed with hot pasta.

On grocery shopping day I hope we remember to pick up more french rolls, because I want to slice one down the middle, spread  it thickly with this butter and run it under the broiler. What I might serve it with I haven't a clue, but I already know I will be having some delicious, buttery, cheesy bread for my dinner.

When Barbara started at The Pantry, this cheese spread was already a favorite of the patrons!

Cheese Spread
adapted from:
THE PANTRY Restaurant ~ Portland Oregon

1 pound butter
1/2 pound Sharp Cheddar Cheese - grated
1/4 pound Romano cheese - grated
1 t Worcestershire sauce
1/4 t garlic powder
1/2 t paprika

Have all ingredients at room temperature. Combine ingredients with a stand mixer, starting out slowly and increasing speed. Mix/whip until fluffy.

To use and enjoy: Spread on sourdough or French bread and toast under the broiler. Generously season a baked potato, or toss with some freshly cooked pasta. Use it to butter asparagus and then quickly run the spears under a broiler to finish the dish to perfection........but really the possibilities are endless!

Thank You for visiting Our Sunday Cafe, as always we appreciate your time and your wonderful comments!
5

Caramel Vanilla Liqueur

Welcome to Our Sunday Café, we are pleased you stopped by for a visit. Today we are offering another delicious recipe from our kitchen. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did…

Caramel Vanilla Liqueur, an easy to make liqueur.
Caramel Vanilla Liqueur

Caramel Vanilla Liqueur
by the seat of my pants
makes about 3 qt.

35-50 caramel candies - See note below.
1 1/2 c water
1 c sugar
2 T vanilla extract
4/5 qt of vodka


Unwrap candy, set aside. Bring water to a boil, remove from heat, stir in sugar. Stir to dissolve, add caramel candy, as the candy softens, stir until dissolved.


Set mixture aside to cool to room temperature. In a large container (1/2 gallon mason jar) combine, the caramel mixture, vanilla and vodka. Stir well.

To serve, fill a glass with ice, add Caramel Liqueur, swirl the glass to chill the drink, then sip and enjoy!

Or you could fill a glass with ice, add a splash of half and half, then top off with the Caramel Liqueur, swirl the glass to chill the drink, then sip and enjoy.....

Note:  this is a thick, rich tasting homemade liqueur, made with real ingredients. Be aware that the amount of caramel used will determine the texture or thickness of the final product. 

Update:  This liqueur will separate. When serving, you will want to stir it (if stored in a lidded mason jar) or gently turn the bottle over a couple of times to mix it up a bit.

Thank you for visiting Our Sunday Cafe, as always we appreciate your time when you visit and your wonderful comments! 

If you like what you see here, we would appreciate it if you told your friends (we would love more followers!), if not, tell us. Our goal is to share relevant information that you will enjoy and use for yourself and your family. 


You can also sign up for Our Sunday Cafe posts by email, thank you for subscribing!
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