New Series: Food for Thought

Food for Thought is a new category I am starting on my blog. A few weeks ago I bought a sketch journal for drawings and I decided to turn it into a culinary experience. This journal will serve as an outlet and learning center for all things food. I plan to research individual foods that make up some of the most important ingredients to dishes and some of the ingredients we take for granted. The first two I researched and journaled were garlic and onion. This journal and now blog category is dedicated to my passion for cooking and desire to learn more about the culinary world. I hope you enjoy the little tidbits and facts from each post.

Garlic - Double Knotted Apron

Onion - Double Knotted Apron

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Simply Southern Boiled Peanuts

Simply Southern Boiled Peanuts - Double Knotted Apron

One of my all time favorite snacks are boiled peanuts! Whether you are Southern by birth or by palette, you can be sure to enjoy these salty morsels with an ice cold Coke!

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 lb green peanuts
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • large pot
  • water

Rinse the peanuts to rid them of any dirt or other impurities.

Simply Southern Boiled Peanuts - Rinse and Clean - Double Knotted Apron

Pour the peanuts into a large pot and cover with 1/2 cup Kosher salt.

Simply Southern Boiled Peanuts - Add Half Cup Salt - Double Knotted Apron

Simply Southern Boiled Peanuts - Half Cup of Salt - Double Knotted Apron

Next, cover the peanuts with water. Fill the pot 3/4 full. Stir to mix the salt in with the water.

Simply Southern Boiled Peanuts - Cover with Water and Boil - Double Knotted Apron

Boil the peanuts for at least 1.5 hour and then open one of the larger peanuts to see if the inside meat is soft and tasty. If so, reduce to a low simmer and let the peanuts soak for 15 – 20 minutes. If the peanut was still crunchy or hard continue boiling for another 30 minutes. Be sure to check a few more in between to not over cook. You may also have to add some more water to the pot if you boil for more than an hour, just keep an eye on the water level. You can’t want to scorch the nuts.

Simply Southern Boiled Peanuts - Boil for one and half hours - Double Knotted Apron

Once the peanuts are done, let them soak in the salt water for 10 – 15 minutes before draining. Keep some of the salt water to add to the storage container or bag with the peanuts to keep them from drying out. Keep in mind if you are boiling more than a pound you will need more salt as well as a longer boiling period.

Simply Southern Boiled Peanuts - Drain and Enjoy - Double Knotted Apron

Once drained, serve immediately with an ice cold soda and enjoy! I also love boiled peanuts cold…so if you can’t finish them in one sitting (which I don’t recommend, ha!) you can always finish the the next day or throughout the week!

**I am dedicating this post to one of my best friends, Rachel. I was so blessed to have been able to call her my friend and sister in Christ for three years before she was called home by our heavenly Father. Some of my favorite memories of her are when she, her sister (my other best friend!) and myself camped out around their kitchen table with our college books and homework strewn around our laptops munching on boiled peanuts, peanut M&Ms and ice cold Coca-Colas. We were talking and laughing about everything but our homework and enjoying time together as best friends. I think of so many good memories when I munch on boiled peanuts and know that she is smiling down and remembering those sweet times as well. Until we meet again, I will always be thinking of her and her infectious smile and laugh… and love for boiled peanuts!**

Enjoy!

xo – M

Crawfish Low Country Boil

Crawfish Low Country Boil - Double Knotted Apron

If you’re feeling a little cajun or just want something delicious for dinner, run by your local grocery or seafood market and pick up a couple pounds of crawfish. This is one of the easiest crowd-pleasing meals you can make in less than an hour.

What You’ll Need:

  • 2 lbs frozen crawfish, thawed
  • 1 dozen small/medium red potatoes, halved
  • 2 sausage links, precooked and cut into 2 inch pieces
  • 4 ears of corn, halved
  • 1/2 onion, coarsely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 lemon slices
  • 2 tbsp Old Bay Seasoning

In a very large pot (mine is called a belly pot) fill 3/4 full with water. Add the Old Bay Seasoning, garlic, onion and lemon slices and bring to a boil. Boil for ten minutes and then add potatoes. Boil potatoes for ten minutes and then add the sausage and corn. Boil for another ten minutes. Check the tenderness of the potatoes and if they are fork tender, add the crawfish.

Crawfish Low Country Boil - 2 lbs Crawfish - Double Knotted Apron

Boil the crawfish for about five minutes or until bright red. The tails will pull off easily from the body when completely cooked. Don’t over cook or the meat will be tough.

Crawfish Low Country Boil - Old Bay Seasoning - Double Knotted Apron

Remove from heat and drain. Pour the contents out over baking sheets or newspaper (if you are feeling authentic)!

Crawfish Low Country Boil - Drain and Serve - Double Knotted Apron

Serve with some cocktail sauce, lemon and butter. Make sure you have plenty of wet naps around because it is about to get messy!

Enjoy!

xo – M

 

Spicy Chicken Enchiladas

Spicy Chicken Enchiladas

 

I am excited to share this ridiculously easy enchilada recipe with you. These spicy little numbers come together in no time and can be served with whatever your favorite Mexican sides may be (Spanish rice, black beans, salsa, etc.). Get ready to get your spice on!

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 lb package of chicken tenderloins
  • 1 package Old El Paso Chipotle Mexican Cooking Sauce
  • 1/4 cup pickled jalapeños
  • 4 oz. monterey jack cheese, shredded
  • 8 flour tortillas
  • 1/4 medium onion, sliced

Prepare your chicken with salt and pepper to both sides. Place in a nonstick skillet coated with 2 – 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Cook the chicken on medium heat. Add the sliced onions to the pan and sauté while the chicken cooks though. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Chicken Enchiladas - Double Knotted Apron

Once the chicken is no longer pink in the middle, remove from the pan and shred. Place the shredded chicken back into the sauce pan and reduce to low heat. Add the package of Old El Paso Chipotle Mexican Cooking Sauce and heat through for about five minutes.

Chicken Enchiladas - Chicken and Sauce - Double Knotted Apron

Coarsely chop the pickled jalapeños and add them to the pan with chicken and sauce. Mix well.

Chicken Enchiladas - Jalapenos - Double Knotted Apron

Chicken Enchiladas - Chicken and Jalapenos -Double Knotted Apron

Remove eight flour tortillas from the package and one-by-one add some of the chicken and sauce mixture to each tortilla.

Chicken Enchiladas - Load the Quesadillas with Chicken - Double Knotted Apron

Top with the shredded cheese and then roll the tortilla.

Chicken Enchiladas - Load the Quesadilla with Chicken and Cheese - Double Knotted Apron

Place in a glass 13×9 baking pan (spray the sides and bottom with non stick spray) along the bottom until it is filled.

Chicken Enchiladas - Pre Baked - Double Knotted Apron

Top with more cheese and jalapeños. Bake at 350 for 10 – 15 minutes or until the cheese has melted.

Chicken Enchiladas - Post Baked - Double Knotted Apron

Remove and serve immediately along with your favorite sides! We paired our enchiladas with black beans, salsa and sour cream.

Enjoy!!

xo – M

Spicy Chicken Enchiladas Recipe Card – Double Knotted Apron

 

 

 

 

 

Roasted Grape Tomatoes with Onion and Garlic

roastedgrapetomatoestext

Now this is one delicious dish. Whether you decide to pair it with pasta or add as a side like my husband and I did tonight, you can’t go wrong! The roasted flavors bring out the Italian in us all!

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 dozen grape tomatoes
  • 1/4 onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 tsp basil
  • 1/4 tsp parsley
  • 2-3 tbsp EVOO (olive oil)
  • salt and pepper

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and prepare a baking sheet with tin foil, shiny side down, and spray with non stick spray.

Rinse the tomatoes and peel the onion and garlic cloves. Slice each grape tomato in half, coarsely chop the onion and garlic.

Grape Tomatoes with Onion and Garlic - Double Knotted Apron

Add these three ingredients into a small mixing bowl and coat with olive oil, parsley and basil. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and then mix with a spatula.

Add EVOO basil and parsley - Double Knotted Apron

Once completely coated pour and spread evenly onto a prepared baking sheet.

Spread veggies on pan and roast - Double Knotted Apron

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Just wait until you smell how wonderful this dish is, ohhhh mama!

Roasted Grape Tomatoes with Onion and Garlic - Double Knotted Apron

We enjoyed this dish as a side with our New York strips, steamed lemon pepper broccoli and baked sweet potatoes.

Use as a side or a main dish - Double Knotted Apron

You can serve the tomatoes on angel hair pasta, a toasted Italian loaf or as a side like my husband and I did!

Enjoy!

xo – M

Roasted Grape Tomatoes with Onion and Garlic Recipe Card – Double Knotted Apron

 

South Georgia Sweet Tea

South Georgia Sweet Tea - Double Knotted Apron

 

One of my favorite drinks is a tall glass of good ole sweet tea. I’m not talking about the iced tea mockery they try to slip past you at most restaurants these days, I am talking down-home-front-porch-rockin-put-a-lemon-in-it-good-ole-southern-sweet-tea. If you are like me and can’t take the flavorlessness of unsweet or the sugar inducing coma pre-made sweet tea at the store, then try out my family’s recipe for South Georgia Sweet Tea. A perfect pitcher every time and good until the last drop.

What You’ll Need:

  • 3 Liter pitcher
  • 3 Luzianne family size tea bags
  • 1 cup granulated sugar

Fill a 1 quart glass measuring cup with water and microwave on high for 5 minutes. (You can also use a tea kettle if you prefer. The microwave is just quicker.) Remove from the microwave and drop the three tea bags in the water and let steep for 20 minutes.

After 20 minutes lightly pinch the tea bags to drain the remaining water and then throw away. (For stronger tea let steep at least 30 minutes.)

Add a cup of sugar to the bottom of your three liter pitcher and then pour the steeped tea over the sugar to melt. Stir, stir, stir. Add water to the tea mixture to fill to the 3 liter mark. Place in the fridge to chill before serving.

Pour over ice and add a lemon slice!

sweet tea

Sip and Enjoy!

xo – M