comfort food

NATIONAL NO DIRTY DISHES DAY

May 18 marks a fun holiday, National No Dirty Dishes Day.  This is a day that gives us all a break from the regular daily routine.  There are two options for this day.  You can eat all meals out. If that is possible, would also be a bonus treat. Or, you can use disposable paper plates, cups and silverware.  To stay earth friendly, choose ones that are biodegradable.

Compostable Paper Plates 250 Pcs Disposable Dinnerware Set Heavy-Duty Quality Natural Bagasse Made of Sugar Cane Fibers Biodegradable Plates and Cutlery for Party, BBQ, Picnic(Natural)

by Gezond
Compostable Paper Plates 250 Pcs Disposable Dinnerware Set Heavy-Duty Quality Natural Bagasse Made of Sugar Cane Fibers Biodegradable Plates and Cutlery for Party, BBQ, Picnic(Natural)

by Gezond

HOW TO OBSERVE

Go out to lunch or dinner with friends or have a barbecue and serve everything on paper plates with disposable utensils. Use #NoDirtyDishesDay to post on social media.

Shop Amazon - Grilling and Outdoor Cooking Products
Shop Amazon – Grilling and Outdoor Cooking Products

See also National Visit Your Relatives Day. Maybe you can combine the two…

Greek Gyros Meat

1lb ground lamb
1 lb ground beef
3 Tbsp minced garlic
1 Tbsp Onion powder
1 1/2 tsp Marjoram
1 tsp Rosemary
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper

Silicone Bakeware Set | 3-Piece Professional Non-Stick Silicone Baking Set by Boxiki Kitchen | Includes Round Cake Mold Pan, Square Cake Mold Pan, Bread Loaf Mold Pan  by Boxiki Kitchen  Silicone Bakeware Set | 3-Piece Professional Non-Stick Silicone Baking Set by Boxiki Kitchen | Includes Round Cake Mold Pan, Square Cake Mold Pan, Bread Loaf Mold Pan

by Boxiki Kitchen

Directions


  1. Preheat oven to 325°
  2. Add beef, lamb, onion powder, garlic, marjoram, rosemary, salt and pepper to food processor.
  3. Process for 1 – 2 minutes until thick paste forms.
  4. Smooth mixture onto lined baking sheet with edges.  About 1 – 2 inches thick.
  5. Press firmly into rectangle shape.
  6. Make sure to pack firmly together.  (A loaf pan can also be used just make sure it’s filled only a couple inches high.)
  7. Bake for 20 minutes, taking care not to over bake it.  Drain any grease from pan, if using loaf pan, about halfway through bake time.
  8. Let stand and cool at least 10 minutes before slicing.


CINCO DE MAYO

Cinco De May’s deeply rooted history in the Franco-Mexican War influenced Mexican-Mexican American communities in the early years of the American Civil War. In the early 1860s, as the Civil War erupted, these communities took up the banner of the Cinco De Mayo celebration as a way to commemorate the cause of freedom and democracy. Today, in the United States, Americans celebrate Mexican-American heritage and pride annually on May 5th.

Fiesta Fun Party Pack (16 Fiesta Luncheon Napkins, 8 7" Fiesta Fun Plates, 8 10" Fiesta Fun Plates)

by amscan
Fiesta Fun Party Pack (16 Fiesta Luncheon Napkins, 8 7″ Fiesta Fun Plates, 8 10″ Fiesta Fun Plates)

by amscan

My husband’s birthday happens to be this day too. So we combine the Cinco De Mayo theme as we celebrate his birthday. Jen’s Loaded Nachos, Jen’s Tres Leche cake, Family Taco Night,
and maybe some Mojito Sherbert Punch, give this party a fiesta feel. So check out these recipes for your party.

Cinco De Mayo Fiesta and Birthday Party
With many more to come.

Cinco de Mayo is Spanish for “fifth of May.”

Cinco de Mayo
Cinco de Mayo

On June 7, 2005, the United States Congress issued a Concurrent Resolution. The resolution invited the President of the United States to issue a proclamation calling upon the people of the United States to observe Cinco de Mayo with appropriate ceremonies and activities.

Please stay safe as the Coronavirus is still out there. Just because there might be tequila, involved please observe guidelines. Especially if you live in a state that is reopening.

According to José Alamillo, professor of ethnic studies at Washington State University in Pullman, a 2006 study found more than 150 official events celebrating the day.

Celebrations surrounding the observance in the United States take on a significance beyond that in Mexico. They include displaying of banners and events highlighting Mexican culture, music, and regional dancing. School districts also hold special events to educate students about its historical significance. In the U.S., commercial interests the day by celebrating Mexican products and services with an emphasis on beverages, food, and music.

HOW TO OBSERVE #CincodeMayo

Celebrate Mexican heritage, culture, and history. Explore foods like Quesadillas with avocado, Margarita Sangrias, and traditions, music, and cinema. La Fiesta at your house.
Immerse yourself in the language and discover new connections. Uncover long lost history and share your treasures. Share your Mexican heritage and use #CincodeMayo to post on social media.

CINCO DE MAYO HISTORY

In 1861, the Battle of Puebla pitched 6,000 French troops against a small, under-supplied Mexican force of 2,000 men. Not expecting to win the campaign, the Mexican army overcame the French in under a day. While the battle didn’t win the war, the victory held great symbolism for Mexico during the Franco-Mexican War and buoyed the army throughout the conflict. Each year, Mexico commemorates the day with celebrations across the country, though it is not a federal holiday.

<a href="<a target="_blank" href="https://www.amazon.com/b/?ie=UTF8&node=9013937011&ref_=assoc_tag_ph_1399067780014&_encoding=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&linkCode=pf4&tag=jensperspe0fe-20&linkId=717b210ed2c233ee575b682b1172098b">Shop Amazon – Wearable Technology: Electronics</a>""Shop Amazon - Wearable Technology: Electronics
Shop Amazon – Wearable Technology: Electronics

Happy Easter

Lots of people around the world will be observing Easter very differently this year. It seems strange with no grandchildren running through the house. We didn’t color eggs, make easter baskets, or plan a big family Easter dinner.

Happy Easter


The only plans we have are to make an easy attempt at “What’s for dinner?”. So here it is our Easter menu this year. We’re skipping brunch and egg hunts. Due to Coronavirus,we’ve had our fill of ham. So I’m doing a fruit salad, steamed asparagus, and my oven-roasted pork. If I’m feeling really ambitious, I’ll add Lemon Greek potatoes too. Check back for these recipes. Check out our Recipe page for more great meals to share with those you care about.

Unlimited reading from over 1 million ebooks *Unlimited listening to thousands of audiobooks *Read on any device *Membership plans are also giftable
Unlimited reading from over 1 million ebooks *Unlimited listening to thousands of audiobooks *Read on any device *Membership plans are also giftable

For starters I did all my shopping through pick-ups or delivery. We have health issues that would make even minor exposure very bad. We have stayed out of stores, pharmacies, and any public places. If you haven’t tried any of these it’s well worth the time.

Walmart pick up. Sadly we do not yet have delivery here yet. Fingers crossed they will soon. So we vie for limited pick up spaces. I find late nights to be a good time to sneak in. You can shop mast items to your cart before a time becomes available.

I start adding items to my cart days before I am anticipating an opening. Even a small amount in your cart can lock in your slot. Check out even if full shopping not done. I use a credit card because I know I can add items after I check out to a certain time. People loose their slots by waiting until full order is done to reserve a time and check out.

Instacart and Shipt. Here in northwest Florida we don’t have places like Whole Foods Market by Amazon. So a separate service does the shopping. Instacart gives us access to Publix. I have used them previously and was really happy when some alternatives arrived. I’m sure my experience was not the norm as I know quite a few who love their service.

We started using Shipt in addition to our Walmart pickups. This service has been phenomenal. They give us access to Winn Dixie, Target, and even pick up prescriptions from big name pharmacies.

Things are crazy so I know I need to order early. Don’t wait until you’re out. Low stock, hoarding, and traffic at stores means, what you need may not be in stock. It took me three orders to get bread and some non-perishable items like soup.

Your shopper has nothing to do with stock available for you. As these people are braving, crowds, iverworks grocery employees, and the health risks associated with a store.

I have the most flexibility in my schedule so I check on items and opportunities often. I finally found an online place that has both toilet paper and paper towels. I’ve been using Boxed for a few years now. We love the ability to purchase bulk items without the membership fees. If we had a Costco, it might be different. We haven’t tried BJ’s yet as they opened here after the pandemic started.

Shop Amazon Gift Cards. Any Occasion. No Expiration.
Shop Amazon Gift Cards. Any Occasion. No Expiration.

What ever your plans may be I hope that 2020 has taught us all to cherish the time and memories with those special to you. If you learn nothing else from Coronavirus, know that nothing in the future is guaranteed.

Have a safe, healthy, and Happy Easter. Don’t forget those CDC guidelines during egg hunts.

Happy Easter color page
Easter color

NATIONAL CHILI DAY

National Chili Day on the fourth Thursday in February honors one of America’s favorite winter dishes–chili. It’s also known as chili con carne (chili with meat). February 27, 2020.

Chili is most commonly made up of tomatoes, beans, chili peppers, meat, garlic, onions, and cumin.  However, cooks offer up so many variations to the basic chili recipe. And, with so many varieties, chili cook-off competitions love to feature chili as a favored entry.  

Crock-Pot SCCPVP600-S Smart-Pot 6-Quart Slow Cooker, Brushed Stainless Steel

by Crock-Pot
Nothing beats coming home after a long day to hot, ready to eat chili.
Nothing beats coming home after a long day to hot, ready to eat chili. Crock-Pot SCCPVP600-S Smart-Pot 6-Quart Slow Cooker, Brushed Stainless Steel

by Crock-Pot

American frontier settlers used a “chili” recipe of dried beef, suet, dried chili peppers and salt. All this was pounded together and formed into bricks and dried. They could then boil the bricks in pots on the trails. 

At the Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893, the San Antonio Chili Stand helped people from all over the United States appreciate the taste of chili.  Because San Antonio was a significant tourist destination, it helped Texas-style chili con carne spread throughout the South and West.  In 1977, House Concurrent Resolution Number 18 of the 65th Texas Legislature designated chili con carne as the official dish of the U.S. state of Texas.

Before World War II, hundreds of small, family-run chili parlors (also known as chili joints) popped up throughout the state of Texas as well as other places in the United States. Each new chili parlor usually claimed some kind of secret recipe. 

Lodge 6 Quart Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven. Classic Red Enamel Dutch Oven (Island Spice Red)

by Lodge
Lodge 6 Quart Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven. Classic Red Enamel Dutch Oven (Island Spice Red)

by Lodge


Ways to enjoy chili

There are many ways that people enjoy the great taste of chili, some of which include:

  • Add chili to hot dogs to create chili dogs.
  • Top burgers with chili and enjoy a chili burgers.
  • Combine chili and cheese with fries and make chili cheese fries.
  • Make the ultimate baked potato by stuffing it with chili.
  • “Frito pie” is chili with spaghetti noodles.
  • Transform mac and cheese into chili mac.
  • Mix rice and chili for another flavor favorite.

HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalChiliDay

There are so many ways to enjoy chili. Just about everyone has their own recipe, too.

Jen’s Easy Chili
White Chicken Chili

Use #NationalChiliDay to post on social media.

Take it for lunch! Sistema Microwave Collection Soup Mug 22.1 oz, Red

by Sistema
Take it for lunch! Sistema Microwave Collection Soup Mug 22.1 oz, Red by Sistema

NATIONAL CHILI DAY HISTORY

Rich Kelly of Hard Times Cafe in Arlington, VA founded National Chili Day. The day has been celebrated with cook-offs, pot lucks, feeds and bottomless bowls since at least 2006. 

Shop Amazon - Gift Cards for Weddings
Shop Amazon – Gift Cards for Weddings

NATIONAL BANANA BREAD DAY


February 23rd annually recognizes a well-known food holiday, National Banana Bread Day.
A moist, sweet, cake-like quick bread, banana bread is made with fully ripe, mashed bananas.  Some recipes call for yeast, and then the finished banana bread is sliced, toasted and spread with butter. 


With the popularization of baking soda and baking powder in the 1930s banana bread first became a standard feature of American cookbooks. It appeared in Pillsbury’s 1933 Balanced Recipes cookbook, too. Banana bread later gained further acceptance with the release of the original Chiquita Banana’s Recipe Book in 1950. 

KitchenAid KC448BXERA 17-piece Tools and Gadget Set, Red

by KitchenAid
KitchenAid KC448BXERA 17-piece Tools and Gadget Set, Red

by KitchenAid



Despite the banana’s arrival in the United States in the 1870s, it took a while before they appeared as an ingredient in desserts.

Early Banana Bread

One early recipe came from The Vienna Model Bakery. It advertised banana bread as something new in the April 21, 1893, edition of St. Louis Post-Dispatch.  A new restaurant/bakery chain owned by Gaff, Fleischmann & Company, The Viena Model Bakery was known for its baked goods and was likely one of the first to produce banana bread in the United States. The recipe was made with banana flour, which is made by drying strips of the fruit, then grinding it to a powder. This process had long been used in the West Indies.


In Hawaii during World War I, a surplus of bananas resulted from very few ships available to export the fruit.  To prevent waste, alternative uses for bananas were developed. For example, bakeries started incorporating the fruit into their bread.


This recipe was printed in The Maui News on April 12, 1918, for banana bread:
2/3 banana
1/3 flour
Yeast, coconut milk or water
There was also rationing of staple food items such as flour.  Banana flour was a suggested substitute.  It was touted as a health food and recommended for a vegetarian diet.

Meatloaf and Bread Pan | Gourmet Non-Stick Silicone Loaf Pan by Boxiki Kitchen | for Baking Banana Bread, Meat Loaf, Pound Cake | 8.5” FDA-Approved BPA-free Silicone, Steel Frame + Handles

by Boxiki Kitchen
Meatloaf and Bread Pan | Gourmet Non-Stick Silicone Loaf Pan by Boxiki Kitchen | for Baking Banana Bread, Meat Loaf, Pound Cake | 8.5” FDA-Approved BPA-free Silicone, Steel Frame + Handles

by Boxiki Kitchen


This, of course, is not the quick bread we know today.  A recipe submitted by Mrs. Dean in the February 18, 1918, issue of The Garden Island paper for a banana muffin might more closely resemble the quick bread we think of today.


1 cup cornmeal
3-1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
2 tablespoons of sugar
1 sifted banana
3/4 cup rye flour
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
1 egg
1 tablespoon Crisco
Mix dry ingredients, add banana, milk and egg and Crisco.

Quick Bread and Muffin

The difference between a quick bread and a muffin in baking has a lot to do with the type of fat and how it is mixed creating a different crumb or texture to the bread.


In 1927, Unifruit (a wholesale produce company) offered a free cookbook called From the Tropics to Your Table. The book offered recipes full of bananas as ingredients including banana muffins and breads. This little cookbook would have been handy during the Great Depression which was just around the corner. At the time, families utilized every scrap of food, including overripe bananas. They cooked overripe bananas, as well as other fruits and vegetables, into breads, stews and other dishes when flavor and texture were not as appealing raw.

KitchenAid KL26M1XOB Professional 6-Qt. Bowl-Lift Stand Mixer - Onyx Black

by KitchenAid

KitchenAid KL26M1XOB Professional 6-Qt. Bowl-Lift Stand Mixer – Onyx Black

by KitchenAid
We use this for breads, cakes, cookies, frosting and anything else we create in the kitchen. My mother has had this same mixer for over 40 years. It still does the job like we bought it yesterday. This experience has taught us to look for this brand for it’s features and durability.



HOW TO OBSERVE #NationalBananaBreadDay

Bake your favorite version of banana bread to celebrate. With so many varieties to try – banana nut, chocolate banana and more – you can make more than one! Invite someone to join you or give a loaf or two away. The celebration is just too good not to share! We like ours warm from the oven with butter!

Use #NationalBananaBreadDay to post on social media.

Brides and grooms will receive the following key benefits: *Up to 20% completion gift off most products on Amazon *World's largest selection, plus Amazon's reliable fast shipping and world class customer service *It's universal - add items from other websites with the universal button * Fast, free shipping - Free shipping on orders over $25 or fast, FREE delivery on millions of items with Prime.
Brides and grooms will receive the following key benefits: *Up to 20% completion gift off most products on Amazon *World’s largest selection, plus Amazon’s reliable fast shipping and world class customer service *It’s universal – add items from other websites with the universal button * Fast, free shipping – Free shipping on orders over $25 or fast, FREE delivery on millions of items with Prime.

Jen’s Loaded Nachos

I These started out as a great alternative to traditional recipes of tacos, enchiladas, Doritos casserole. They make a great meal, snack, or game day favorite too.I wash mine in the dishwasher and reuse at parties, on special occasions and if it breaks it was disposable to begin with.

Ingredients

2 lbs minced beef or chuck
1 medium yellow onion diced
1/2 medium bell pepper chopped
2 Roma tomatoes diced
Sour cream (we like Daisy in squeezeable application)
Chucky salsa (we like taco bell mild)
1 – 16oz fiesta blend shredded cheese
Guacamole if desired
1 lg bag Tostitos Scoops (you can use any kind of totilla chip you prefer these just make handy cups)
2 pkg McCormick Taco seaoningChopped jalapeno, black olives, melted cheese sauce, are optional.
You can make to many variations to list, including chicken, steak, salsa verde, lime, and anything else you can dream up.  I make mine like our family taco night.Farberware 22001 Buena Cocina Deep Nonstick Frying Pan / Fry Pan / Skillet with Lid and Helper Handle - 12 Inch, Black  by Farberware  Farberware 22001 Buena Cocina Deep Nonstick Frying Pan / Fry Pan / Skillet with Lid and Helper Handle – 12 Inch, Black.    by Farberware

Directions

  • In medium pan, brown ground meat.
  • Drain excess fat
  • Add 1/2 cup water and taco seasoning stirring well to coat meat.
  • Continue over medium heat until water has evaporated.
  • Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  • Chop or dice vegetables as needed. I found a few great shortcuts if there is no one around to help.  You can get shredded iceberg lettuce like the restaurants use in the produce section at your local Walmart. If I don’t have the time the also have pico de gallo instead of dicing onions and tomatoes yourself. They add cilantro and typically Serano peppers. 
  • Spread chips or cups on big tray. 
  • Evenly sprinkle with cooked, seasoned meat, vegetables, cheese and toppings as desired. 
  • Feeding a diverse crew?  Set everything up and let them add their choices as they like them.  This concept also works well for parties and game days too.


Try with a virgin or real margarita and maybe Tres Leche cake for dessert.
%d bloggers like this: