I love this time of the year when produce is beginning to hit the stands and sprout in our own gardens. We were a little late putting in our vegetable garden this year due to the late frost and rainy spring (I am definitely NOT complaining, because Texas heat is coming). I look forward to our hot and sweet peppers making their appearance. Be sure to check back to see our “Galvanized Garden” we are putting the finishing touches on thanks to my friends at Jabo’s Ace Hardware – my offical HWT blog sponsor. You can check out the first video we made on how to prepare for proper drainage in your containers on my Home with a Twist YouTube Channel here . Big favor — if you could please subscribe to my channel it allows me to have very own YouTube address for my blog rather than just a series of letters and numbers.
Anyway, since grilling season is also here, homemade savory and sweet salsas always make an apperance for dinner. I love this recipe from My Turn for Us blog because it’s not too hot. You could always add in heat, but if you like a milder salsa, this one packs its punch with fresh mango!
1 Mango, diced
1/4 cup red onion. chopped
1 jalapeno, chopped (I used 2)
1/4 cup red bell pepper
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
salt to taste
1. Combine all ingredients, cover and chill in fridge until ready to serve
We served it with grilled salmon, but think fish or breakfast tacos, pork tenderloin and shrimp. Oh, my. Summer is coming folks!
This an interesting story from the Washington Post of Dorcas Reilly and her famous green bean casserole. It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving for Mr. and Miss Bee if I didn’t make her beloved side dish for them every holiday.
It started with a call from the Associated Press and a question: What’s a good recipe for a vegetable side dish that features common pantry products?
In 1955, the AP, like other newspapers and magazines of the time, was running a feature of an easy-to-make Campbell’s Soup side. The question came with a caveat: the recipe had to be built around green beans and Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom Soup, two items most Americans regularly had in their homes in the ’50s.
The request fell to the Campbell’s Soup Co. test kitchen in Camden, N.J., an arm of the company that focused on coming up with recipes for its products. Dorcas Reilly, a supervisor for Campbell’s home economics department, was tasked with leading her team to figure out what could be done. The group would test and grade recipes repeatedly. Only a perfect score would qualify it as ready to go. In November of that year, Reilly and her team settled on what would be first known as “the Green Bean Bake,” an easily adaptable six-ingredient recipe of green beans, cream of mushroom soup, milk, soy sauce, black pepper and French fried onions that takes 10 minutes to prep and 30 minutes to bake.
“We worked in the kitchen with things that were most likely to be in most homes,” she told NPR in 2015. “It’s so easy. And it’s not an expensive thing to make, too.”
When Campbell’s started to put Reilly’s recipe on the cans of its cream of mushroom soup in 1960, the popularity of the dish hit new heights. More than 60 years since the dish was invented, green bean casserole is a Thanksgiving staple, with an estimated 20 million-plus American households expected to serve it this year, according to Campbell’s.
Throughout her life, Reilly, a culinary trail blazer during a time when women were often on the sidelines in corporate America, remained astonished at the success of a dish based on green beans and cream of mushroom soup, one referred to by Campbell’s as “the mother of all comfort foods.”
“We all thought this is very nice, etc., and then when we got the feelings of the consumer, we were really kinda pleasantly shocked,” she said in a Campbell’s promotional video for the dish. “I’m very proud of this, and I was shocked when I realized how popular it had become.”
Reilly, an influential innovator of beloved comfort food in the U.S., died on Oct. 15 of Alzheimer’s disease in Camden. She was 92. A visitation and celebration of her life will be held on Saturday in Haddonfield, N.J.
“We are deeply saddened by the passing of Dorcas Reilly, the creator of one of the most beloved American recipes, the Green Bean Casserole,” Campbell’s said in a statement, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. “Dorcas was an incredible woman whose legacy will live on for years to come. She will be missed by her Campbell colleagues and all those who were impacted by her creativity and generous spirit.”
Born on July 22, 1926, Reilly was raised in Camden. She would become one of the first members of her family to attend college, earning her bachelor’s degree in home economics from the Drexel Institute of Technology, now known as Drexel University, in 1947. She headed to Campbell’s in 1949, where she was one of two full-time employees developing recipes for the company’s home economics department.
With the economy flourishing in the ’50s, there was an appetite for meals that were easy to make, delicious and cheap. Reilly found success with a tuna noodle casserole, a tomato soup cake and a Sloppy Joe made from tomato soup. “It was about the team working together,” Reilly said in her college alumni biography. “I didn’t do it; we did it.”
But things were different when it came to her most notable side dish. Campbell’s has estimated that 40 percent of its cream of mushroom soup sold in the U.S. goes toward making Reilly’s green bean casserole. And millions of Americans have adopted it as part of their Thanksgiving celebrations.
“Thanksgiving is the Super Bowl for green bean casserole,” Jane Freiman, director of Campbell’s Consumer Test Kitchen, told NBC’s “Today” in 2015.
Reilly’s cuisine hit new heights in 2002, when Campbell’s donated the original recipe card written by Reilly to the National Inventors Hall of Fame. The yellow recipe card resides in the same place as Thomas Edison’s lightbulb and phonograph and Enrico Fermi’s first controlled nuclear reactor.
Her son, Thomas B. Reilly, told the Philadelphia Inquirer that his mom was humble about her career never spoke about the achievement when he was growing up. It only started to come up more when she was recognized as the inventor of the dish.
“I think she was surprised,” her son said to the Inquirer. “I think she was even more surprised at how much of a big deal it became. She was not a flashy person. She didn’t bask in the limelight. She just went in and did her job every day, like most blue-collar people.”
Though she was known for her work, Reilly had said how “food should be fun and food should be happy.” It was a mantra she carried with her in bringing green bean casserole to the Thanksgiving table. And millions would follow.
“I loved to go to work every day,” she said at Drexel in 2009. “It was just another day’s work. ” She added: “I hope you enjoy green bean casserole forever.”
For inspiration on how to put a twist on Mrs. Reilly’s famous side dish, go here for more recipe ideas.
Tomato Basil soup and grilled cheese are at the top of my best-of list. Soup is a perfect dish for winter and when I found this recipe for Creamy Roasted Tomato Soup on Pinterest from Cafe Delites, I wanted to give it a try.
First, I always wash my vegetables with Thieves fruit and vegetable spray. It’s all natural, filled with essential oils and smells amazing. It’s really important to clean your vegetables thoroughly before you slice or eat them.
You roast the tomatoes and garlic in the oven first and it makes the house smell heavenly.
For step four I don’t have an immersion blender, so I ladled the soup in batches into my food processor to make it creamy. I think you really need to blend the soup because otherwise you might be overwhelmed by the skins from the tomatoes. It brought the ingredients to a creamier state perfect for dipping your sandwich.
For my grilled cheese I always use English toasting bread from the bakery and extra sharp cheddar cheese I slice from the block. It just oozes deliciousness.
Plate it all up on the cutest soup and sandwich set from Sur la Table. And, since the soup is red why not serve it for your Valentine on Wednesday!
My sweet niece gave me a wonderful cookbook for Christmas – Love Welcome Serve: Recipes that Gather and Give by Amy Nelson Hannon. I swear I want to make everything in this book – every recipe sounds so delicious!
Starting with this recipe for Broccoli Salad. Our neighbors had a get together for Super Bowl and I took this dish. It transports well, makes enough for about 8-10 people and I think would be a perfect side salad with sandwiches, too. Don’t be afraid of the mayonnaise and sugar addition; it makes the perfect sauce.
1 cup golden raisins
1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 large head of broccoli, cut into bite-sized florets
1/2 red onion, finely chopped
1 cup cashews
Put the raisins in a small bowl and splash them with a few tablespoons of water. Heat them in the microwave for about 15 seconds, stir them, and let them soak in the water so they’ll plump up and become tender.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sugar, and vinegar. In a medium bowl, toss together the broccoli, red onion, and cashews. Drain the raisins and add them to the mix. Stir in the mayonnaise sauce and coat everything well. Cover and chill for 30 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
The June issue of Southern Living magazine features a series of recipes where the star is a vegetable. One of my favorite things about this time of year is the plentiful bounty of garden vegetables. Growing up, Mother made stuffed green bell peppers usually with ground beef and rice. I have never been a fan of the green bell pepper, but serve me their cousins “red, orange, and yellow” and I am sold. So, when I saw this recipe for Stuffed Peppers with Grits and Sausage I knew I had to give it a try.
Note: Miss Bee does not eat red meat or pork. I substituted the pork sausage for turkey sausage (Jimmy Dean’s breakfast sausage crumbles). It was the perfect switch and Miss Bee gave it two-thumbs up. This is a big deal, folks.
The recipe can be found here. But I will also provide. It takes about an hour to prep and cook this dish, so be sure to allow yourself enough time, but it will be well worth the investment.
3 large red bell peppers
1 TBL canola oil
3 hot Italian sausage links, casings removed (I used one bag of Jimmy Dean’s Turkey Sausage breakfast crumbles. They are precooked so I just warmed them up with the onions in a skillet).
1 cup chopped sweet onion
1/2 cup coarse cornmeal (they recommend McEwen & Sons, I used the regular cornmeal I bake with).
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 cup whole milk
1 tsp. kosher salt, divided
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
3 oz. mozzarella cheese, shredded and divided
3 TBL. olive oil
2 TBL. white wine vinegar
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 cups heirloom grape tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup basil leaves
Preheat oven to 350. Microwave bell peppers on HIGH for 2 minutes in microwave. Cut bell peppers in half through the stem. Remove seeds and white membranes using a serrated tomato corer or melon baller, leaving stem intact. Discard seeds and membranes.
Heat canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add sausage to skillet and cook 4 minutes, stirring to break into small pieces. Add onion to skillet; cook, stirring occasionally, until sausage is cooked and onion is tender, about 3 minutes. Remove sausage mixture from pan. Add cornmeal to skillet and cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add broth, milk, and 3/4 tsp. of the salt to the skillet; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to a medium and cook stirring occasionally until liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Stir in parsley, sausage mixture, and half of the cheese. Divide mixture evenly among bell pepper halves. Place side by side on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese.
Bake in a preheated oven until cheese is browned and peppers are tender, about 30 minutes.
While the peppers are baking, whisk together olive oil, vinegar, black pepper and remaining 1/4 tsp of sale in a medium bowl. Add tomatoes and basil; toss to coat. Serve over peppers.
The inside is so delicious and is the perfect filling to accompany the pepper. I couldn’t help but think this would be a hearty entree to serve for brunch because it has grits, sausage and cheese.
The family loved it so the recipe is now torn out of the magazine and into the permanent recipe binder. Let me know if you make it and how you liked it!