Mexican Seasoning Blend

Mexican Seasoning Blend 2

We recently moved Savannah home again. She will be doing an internship in January, and it was impossible to find a six-month lease near the college. So, for six-months, she will make the daily drive to college.

I questioned how living together would be after she has been on her own for so long. I’m trying really hard to remember she’s not a child any longer. It is coming with some benefits also. She has become very independent…she doesn’t want me doing her laundry, and she has become an excellent cook!

Fajitas is a specialty of hers, and I am using every excuse I can think of to have her cook them often. Her secret is this awesome seasoning blend that she makes. I even seasoned a roast with it, and it was delicious.

Savannah does not have an exact measurement for the meat and veggies. To feed two people, she typically uses one to two boneless, skinless chicken breast, two green bell peppers, one large onion, and two to three Roma tomatoes.

Savannah seasons her meat with salt, pepper, paprika, and garlic powder. Then saute’s it in a little oil until done. She then removes the meat from the skillet to saute green bell peppers and onions. Once the veggies are tender, add chopped Roma tomatoes and a heaping tablespoon of the fabulous seasoning, plus the juice of half a lime. Add the meat back to the skillet, stirring to combine and serve.

Try this tasty Mexican seasoning blend on burgers or grilled meats for extra wonderful flavor!

 

Mexican Seasoning Blend
 
Author:
 
Ingredients
  • 2 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. Mexican oregano
  • ½ tsp. ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp. chili powder
  • ¼ tsp. ground cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Mix all ingredients in a small bowl until combined. Store in a small jar.

 

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Venison Medallions with Blueberry-Sage Sauce and Compote of Leek and Wild Mushrooms

venison-medallions-with-blackberry-sage-sauce-and-compote-of-leek-and-wild-mushrooms-11

You can definitely tell that deer season has started here. Our lives revolve around food plots, deer stands, and trail cameras. Right now it's bow season and my son hunts with a bow. My guys both eat what they kill, but they kill very few deer. They are members of a deer management club, and the rules are pretty strict.  I can usually count on at least one of two deer per season going into the freezer though. When I first married Greg, I hated the thought of cooking and eating deer. However, almost 29 years later things have changed a little. One contributing factor is the quality of the food we buy. Knowing that much of the meat in our stores has added hormones and antibiotics discourages me from purchasing it. For that reason, and the fact that I have figured out to cook more than venison chili, I have grown to enjoy venison. Today I'm sharing a fabulous recipe from The Mansion on Turtle Creek Cook Book. It looks fancy, and you would think it would be difficult. There are a few steps involved, but this recipe is very simple to prepare and delicious to eat.  
Blueberry-Sage Sauce
 
Author:
 
Ingredients
  • 2 c. zinfandel
  • 1½ pints blueberries, fresh or frozen, rinsed and well drained
  • 2 c. brown veal demi glace
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • Salt, to taste
  • Juice of ½ lemon or to taste
  • 2 sprigs fresh sage
Instructions
  1. Place Zinfandel in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook until liquid is reduced to about ½ cup.
  2. Add the berries, and return liquid to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes or until berries are soft.
  3. Add demi-glace and bring the liquid to a boil. Lower heat and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or to coat the back of a spoon.
  4. Strain sauce nd whisk in butter. Season with salt and lemon juice to taste. Place sage in sauce and steep for 10 to 20 minutes or until ready to use. Keep warm. Remove sage sprigs before serving.
Notes
You can find Classic French Demi-Glace in some grocery stores. The brand I used was More Than Gourmet.

Compote of Leek and Wild Mushrooms
 
Author:
 
Ingredients
  • 1 lg. leek, white part only
  • 1 c. chopped assorted wild mushrooms
  • ½ c. heavy cream
  • Salt to taste
  • Juice of ½ lemon or to taste
Instructions
  1. Cut leek into 2-inch sections. Cut sections into fine julienne strips.
  2. Combine leek strips, wild mushrooms, and cream in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, lower heat, and cook for about 5 minutes or until the cream has thickened.
  3. Remove from heat and season to taste with salt and lemon juice. Keep warm.
  4. Compote may be prepared several hours ahead. Keep warm or reheat gently.
  5. Sauce may be prepared several hours ahead. Keep warm or reheat gently if necessary.

 
Venison Medallions with Blueberry-Sage Sauce and Compote of Leek and Wild Mushrooms
 
Author:
 
Ingredients
  • 8 (3-oz.) medallions from the backstrap of venison
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3 tbsp. canola oil
  • Blueberry-Sage Sauce (recipe follows)
  • Compote of Leek and Wild Mushrooms (recipe follows)
Instructions
  1. Season venison with salt and pepper, to taste. Heat oil in a large cast-iron skillet over high heat. Bring oil to smoking point.
  2. Place medallions carefully in the pan and saute for 3 minutes, being careful not to crowd the pan. Turn and cook for another 2 minutes for medium-rare. Repeat as needed to brown all fillets.
  3. Spoon Blueberry-Sage Sauce over the bottom of each dinner plate Place with 2 medallions in the center of each plate and nestle a small mound of Compote of Leek and Wild Mushrooms above the medallions. Serve immediately.

 

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Grilled-Bacon-Wrapped Dove, Quail, or Pheasant

 

Grilled-Bacon-Wrapped-Dove,-Quail,-or-Pheasant

Almost 29 years ago I married a hunter. He enjoys hunting almost anything, and he likes to fish too. When Wes was born a little over 23 years ago, Greg knew he had a life-long hunting partner. Hunting and fishing are sports that the men in this family have enjoyed for generations. When we were young married, with no kids, I would spend the weekend at deer camp with Greg, my father-in-law, and my brother-in-law.

I even went hunting by myself one time. Yes, you read that correctly…one time. After convincing my best friend, Loretta, to take a Hunter’s Safety class with me, I sat in a stand, with a gun, by myself. I enjoyed being in the woods. Every sound I heard I imagined a huge deer, bigger than anything Greg had ever seen, walking straight to me. I ended up shooting at a deer and missing and crying all evening. I’m not sure how I would have handled it had I killed the deer.

That was my last time hunting with a gun. Since then I have taken my camera. I still enjoy the peacefulness of the woods, but for some reason, Greg won’t take me because he says I’m not quite enough. We are passed those young married days when he wanted to spend every moment with me so now I’m left at the house. (I’m actually okay with that, though!)

I have had to cook my share of fish and game over the years. Dove season opened here last Saturday so I thought I would share this easy Emeril recipe that Greg and Wes love. This recipe works well with dove, quail, or pheasant, and probably any other bird you wanted to try. Simply adjust the cooking times to accommodate the size of your bird.

Grilled Bacon-Wrapped Quail, Dove or Pheasant with Bourbon Pepper Glaze
 
Author:
 
Ingredients
  • 8 quail, dove, or pheasant, dressed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 strips thick-cut bacon
  • ½ c. pepper jelly
  • 3 tbsp. bourbon
  • ½ tsp. Worcestershire sauce
Instructions
  1. Season each bird with salt and pepper. Wrap a slice of bacon around the bird and secure with a toothpick.
  2. Preheat grill to medium-low.
  3. In a bowl, whisk the pepper jelly, bourbon, and Worcestershire sauce until smooth.
  4. Place the bacon-wrapped quail on the grill and cook, turning frequently, for 12 minutes or so, or until the bacon is beginning to caramelize in places and the birds have grill marks on all sides.
  5. Brush the birds with the glaze and continue turning, glazing, and cooking until the birds are nicely glazed and grilled on all sides and the flesh is cooked through, about 12 minutes longer. (Internal temperature of 165°F).
  6. Remove from grill and rest briefly before serving.

 

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Cheeseburger Egg Rolls

 

Cheeseburger-Egg-Rolls

 

Whoop whoop…today is the day I have been looking forward to for weeks now!  I get my cast off today!!  Pure joy!!  I have been out of the house several times now, but always with an escort.  Getting down the stairs has been easiest for me.  I can hold onto the railing and hop down one footed.  Getting up the stairs has been a different ballgame.  For a couple of weeks, I felt that Greg or Wes needed to be here to help me up.  I recently figured out that I could crawl up the steps.  It’s not very comfortable on your knees, but sometimes we just have to do what we have to do.

amye-1

March 11, 2016
This was how my leg looked for about a week after surgery.

When the cast comes off today, I go into a boot.  I’ve never had one of those before so I’m not sure what to expect.  I know I can take it off to shower so no more showers with my leg hanging out of the door!  Oh, the little things we take for granted!  Dr. Spivey originally told me that I would wear the boot for four weeks, so hopefully that is still the case.

amye-2

This is the angle my foot has been in since surgery.

I am hoping that I will be able to walk well. I’ve been a little nervous since they told me at my last visit that walking would be slow and that I “might not even be able to walk out of the office” the day I get my cast off. Hmm…that’s not the news I wanted to hear. In situations like this, I always tend to think, in the back of my mind, that I’ll be the exception? I’ll be able to run out of the office today! I’ll be sure to update you on that! Either way, today I am closer to walking that I was on March 11th!

Today’s recipe for Cheeseburger Egg Rolls is a great little appetizer. They are so simple to make and are much more impressive than your run of the mill dip. Don’t get me wrong; I love a good dip. These turn heads, though. They are different, and you can make them with beef, turkey, or if you have a hunter in the house, venison. I mixed up mayo and stone ground mustard to serve as a dip. You can simply serve with mustard and ketchup if you prefer.

 

Cheeseburger Egg Rolls
 
Author:
 
Ingredients
  • 1 lb. ground beef, ground turkey, or ground venison
  • ½ medium yellow onion, minced
  • 1 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 5 sliced American cheese
  • ½ c. diced dill pickles
  • 13 to 14 egg roll wrappers
  • 1 egg white
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • Condiments of your choice, ketchup, mustard, and mayonnaise.
Instructions
  1. Preheat a skillet over medium heat. Add a tablespoon of oil and the minced onions. Salute until onion is translucent.
  2. Add the ground meat and cook, stirring got break up as much as possible, until well done. Drain off any juices and spoon meat into a mixing bowl.
  3. Break up the cheese and add to the meat. Mix until all of the cheese has melted. Stir in the pickles, and salt and pepper, to taste.
  4. Heat 1 to 1½-inches of vegetable oil in a skillet.
  5. While the oil heats, gently whisk the egg white in a small bowl and set aside.
  6. To roll the egg rolls, position the egg roll wrapper in front of you in a diamond shape. Spoon 2 tablespoons of the cheeseburger mixture, in a line off slightly off center, nearest corner near you, leaving about 1-inch on each side. Gently and carefully, fold the corner nearest you over the meat filling and tuck it under the filling. Using a pastry brush or your finger, lightly brush some of the egg white onto the wrappers edges. Fold in both sides of the wrapper, then roll the egg roll up.
  7. Fry egg rolls in batches until golden brown, turning as needed to brown on all sides. Remove to a paper-towel lines plate.
  8. Serve with condiments of your choice.

 

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Venison Steaks in Sweet-Sour Sauce

It’s no secret that I live with two men who love to hunt.  They expect me to cook up something wonderful with what they kill so I am always on the hunt for new recipes.  To be honest, I will not eat all cuts of wild game meat and when I do I prefer a sauce on it.  The sauce just seems to help cover up any wild taste that it may have.

This is a great recipe from Essential Pepin by Jacques Pepin.  It was really easy and quick too, which I loved!  I used the back strap for this recipe and it is a recipe I will definitely make again!

 

Venison Steaks in Sweet-Sour Sauce
 
Author:
 
Ingredients
  • 1 venison loin or large tenderloin (about 1½ pounds), trimmed of fat
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 tbsp ketchup
  • 1 tbsp. seedless raspberry jam
  • 2 tsp. soy sauce
  • ¼ c. cold water
  • 1 tbsp. peanut oil
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp. chopped shallots
  • 2 tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. hearty red wine (such as Cabernet Sauvignon)
Instructions
  1. Cut venison into 4 steaks and using a meat pounder, pound the steaks gently until each is about ¾-inch thick. Rub the steaks with olive oil and sprinkle with the thyme. Arrange the steaks in a single layer on a plate, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 8 hours before cooking.
  2. Mix the ketchup, jam, soy sauce, and water together in a small bowl, set aside.
  3. When you are ready to cook the steaks, heat the oven to 160 degrees.
  4. Heat the peanut oil and 1 tbsp. of the butter in a large heavy skillet until hot. Sprinkle the steaks with salt and pepper, place them in the skillet, and sauté over medium-high heat for 2 to 2½ minutes on each side for medium-rare. Transfer the steaks to an ovenproof plate, leaving the drippings in the pan, and keep warm in the oven while you make the sauce.
  5. Add the shallots to the drippings and sauté for about 20 seconds. Add the vinegar and wine and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 1½ minutes. Add the jam mixture and mix well, then stir in the remaining 1 tbsp. butter. Boil for 10 seconds, then strain through a fine strainer.
  6. Place a steak on plate, coat the steaks with the sauce, and serve.
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