Monday, August 25, 2008

Okra and Tomatoes

I borrowed this recipe from

Oh, this was so good. (But I'm sure you have to like okra and tomatoes to begin with... LOL!)

8 slices bacon
1 large onion, chopped
2 (16 ounce) bags frozen cut okra (or 2lb. fresh okra, sliced into 1/2 inch pieces)
2 (14 ounce) cans diced tomatoes, undrained
salt and pepper

Original instructions:
  1. Fry bacon in a large skillet that can be covered, until crisp. Remove from skillet and drain on paper towels. Saute onion in bacon drippings until tender. Add okra and tomatoes, stir to blend. Cover, reduce to low heat. Cook for about an hour, or until okra is tender, stirring occasionally. Do not stir too much or too briskly, because the okra will fall apart. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  2. **Note: Nanny diced the bacon and fried it and the onion together. My family doesn't like the bacon cooked into it because the bacon becomes soft. If you do it my way, you can sprinkle the bacon on right before serving.

I diced the bacon and fried it with the onion together leaving large chunks of soft bacon mixed in with the okra and tomatoes. I thought it was great and the bowl was empty at the end of our get-together.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Dairy Free Pasta Salad

I received this recipe from a friend when I was out in the corporate world before kids. Thanks, Kay, we are still enjoying this recipe!

I eventually had to venture out into the world of cheese replacements instead of avoiding cheese all together... especially for this recipe (although, it might be just as tasty without the "cheese")!

This is my favorite summer pasta salad! I hope you enjoy it, too!

16 oz tri-colored spiral pasta, boiled and cooled
1 large cucumber, pealed and chopped
1/2 lb ham, chopped into cubes
1 small onion, chopped fine
1 small tomato, chopped (I do mine fine)
1/2 block "Cheddar Cheese", shredded
1/2 block "Mozzarella Cheese", shredded
16 oz bottle Kraft Creamy Italian dressing and dip (Yes! It is DF!)

Combine all ingredients in a LARGE bowl and let sit overnight. The dressing will absorb into the noodles and other ingredients allowing all the flavors to "mesh".

Monday, August 11, 2008

Non-Refried Refried Beans

I just made some refried beans that were excellent! Unfortunately, I didn't keep track of how much of anything I put in it. As a reminder to myself, here's what I did:

Pinto Beans
Garlic, minced

Soaked dried pinto beans 1 hour. Drained.

Put pinto beans, water, salt, and some cut up raw bacon in the crockpot. Cook on LOW about 8 hours. Add cumin and garlic to taste (and more salt if needed). Cook on HIGH 1 hour.

Drain beans, reserving liquid. Mash beans and bacon with potato masher. Add liquid back into the mashed beans until desired consistency is reached.