HASH (BROWN) It Out

I LIKE potatoes. I am not in LOVE with them. Yukon Gold & Red potatoes are the one’s I really like preparing. When I travel South I always eat at the Cracker Barrel and they have a great hashbrown casserole. Today I decided to make my version. The internet is like Disney World for Chef’s, Cook Enthusiasts & Foodies alike.

Only eating Fish & Seafood has caused me peruse the internet for meal ideas. I had some Sweet Potatoes for pie and red potatoes. The recipe called for pre-made hashbrowns but I opted out ans just combined the red & sweet potatoes. I LOVE sweet potatoes and add them to recipes suggesting potatoes.

I made eggs with mushrooms since I had them and did not want them to go bad. As I stated before most recipes I create or recreate are measured by eye.

Shredded Red Potatoes

Shredded Sweet Potatoes

Chopped Onions

Sour Cream

Melted Butter

Cream of Celery Soup

Salt

Pepper

Combine all ingredients and place in a greased dish. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes. If you want it a bit more CRISP on the top then turn it to broil and broil for 3-5 minutes.

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No HAM In This Burger

So this NO CHICKEN or TURKEY kick has its GOOD days & BAD days. Today was A GOOD DAY (Ice Cube voice). I’ve been preparing Fish & Veggie dishes for the past 3 months. Again GOOD days & BAD days. I’m a Chef so I cook chicken, turkey & beef for my clients and its CHALLENGING as all outdoors. I have eaten a few pieces of chicken but my body did not respond well to my fall off the wagon. So I’ve decided I either have to come up with a way to combat the rection from my body or not eat chicken again. The jury’s still out on this… I took some fresh Salmon and put it in the food processor to make Salmon Burgers. I couldn’t see buying pre-packaged Salmon Burgers. This way I can season them as I wish. I even added some shrimp to the mixture along with red, orange & yellow peppers. I also added an egg & bread crumbs to bind the mixture together. I made patties and refrigerated them for 2 hours….This *Gives the seasoning time to marry with the fish *Gives the mixture time to bind together While this was refrigerated I create some SOUTHERN SLAW and made Sweet Potato Fries…I also createda spicy mayo. Siracha & Mayo.

Stir Fry Stir Crazy

I am Day 10 on this no chicken or turkey kick. Today wasn’t a struggle as was day 8. I had to talk myself through this. Again meal planning is CHALLENGING. Thank goodness I have fish & other seafood in my freezer. This is one of things thats making this not so hard

As of late I’ve been having a craving for mushrooms so I went out and purchased some organic mushrooms & green onion. I had baby corn & spinach. I sauteed all the ingredients and added some leftover sauce from making Lo Mein.

I loved this dish. The fresh green onion made this dish even more DELISH. Not sure how many more days I can STAY STRONG but I am staying the course and keeping my end of the bargain.

One Day We’ll MEAT Again

My daughter FORCED me to go MEATLESS. I say FORCED. As a Chef how can I go MEATLESS and not feel guilty & angry, HOW? I am a person who will try to keep their word. The one thing I noticed is I am ANGRY. Not sure if its a mental thing from going meatless or I’m just having a bad/challenging week. I haven’t sworn off seafood so I try to incorporate that along with fish.

With so many fish thats not good for you WHAT DO YOU EAT? So tonight I went with a Salmon. The other day I made a Brown Sugar Ginger Glazed Salmon but tonight I decided to go FRIED…..YUP FRIED…..

So while on this NO MEAT craze I decided to cut down the carbs. So I decided to make veggies. What better veggies to make than OKRA? So I sauteed Okra & Tomatoes a southern dish. I had to tap into my South Carolina roots.

Now just because I am not eating meat doesn’t mean I should deprive others. So I made him Fried Chicken, Mash Potatoes & Okra….

My Slamon was Fried to perfection. Crispy on the outside. Seasoned juicy goodness on the inside. When you love food its extremely important that it comes out hust how you want it otherwise you will not be satisfied.

Today my Fried Salmon was amazing and caused me to make a decision to continue my NO MEAT MEALS. Eliminating Meat has made meal planning rather challenging. My fush guy is giving me a great deal on lobsters in the morning. This coupled with this great meal has reaffirmed my dedication to NO MEAT…So Until We MEAT Again….

Southern Slaw

As a child I hated cole slaw. If it was put on my plate I viewed it as a form of punishment. You couldn’t pay me to eat it. Growing up with a Mom who was always experimenting with some recipe or another, I learned to appreciate certain dishes she prepared. As I began to delve into the culinary world I took a different approach to some dishes. I want to ALWAYS stay true to my southern roots. 

My Grandmother Annie Mae took pride in being “GEECHIE”. One who is from the South Carolina Coast. I loved her stories about her childhood & the foods she ate. My Grandmother made certain dishes so frequently that I vowed to never eat them again. EVER. 

Like Black Eyed Peas. She usually infused these with some kind of smoked pork. I despised them until I made a salad with them to include Tomatoes, Garlic, Red Onion, Jalapeños & Cilantro. AMAZING 

Getting back to my Southern Slaw…..

I decided to change it up…Instead of just Green Cabbage I added Purple Cabbage, Collard Greens & I spiralized Sweet Potatoes. I wanted as much color as possible yet breaking away from the traditional ingredients 

 Pastelón & A Fork

Pastelón is a sweet-and-salty Caribbean dish of sweet plantains, meat, cheese, and sauce. The meat varies by location but traditionally pastelón is made with ground meat. Since I don’t eat red meat I used ground Turkey.

I sauteed onion, garlic, red & orange peppers in advocado oil rhen added the ground turkey that I seasoned with Sazón and other seasonings. 

I beat 2 eggs and layered the bottom of the pan with half of egg mixture, then fried plantains, added meat, mozzarella cheese, meat then more mozzarella and topped with more plantains and remainder of egg mixture.

I LOVE Sweet Plantains so this was one of those must try recipes for me. 

Holy SHEET Pan

I L-O-V-E trying new recipes…LOVE. I love food. Not sure why I didn’t pursue being a chef earlier. Growing up there weren’t many Black Chef’s. My Mom & Grandmother certainly inspired me. They were AMAZING cooks & knew their way around the kitchen. They used what was available to them and it didn’t consist of a lot of fresh ingredients. As I began delving into food I found more & more fresh ingredients and incorporated them into my foods. Anywho….I ran across this recipe for Sheet Pan Nachos. What better food is there to eat on a chilly Friday? 

THIS RECIPE by Damn Delicious used ground beef. I don’t eat red meat so I found a more befitting  substitute SHRIMP…..

Easy Peasy recipe. Very flavorful, filling  & fantabulous.