Monthly Archives: June 2013

Chimichurri Shrimp



This is my sister’s debut as the official sous chef, FINALLY. She’s a tried and true shrimp lover, so we convinced her sewing shrimp onto skewers was calling her name. I really like that this sauce is both a marinade and leaves a bit of leftover sauce for topping on some grilled veggies or meat a few days later. It’s from the Party Like a Culinista cookbook and is also really pretty.

I’d also like to nix my comment on using the pizza stone on the grill after we sadly lost our pizza stone to the overly hot heat of the grill yesterday. Um, guess there’s a reason it’s only supposed to go in the oven…All the more reason for me to frequent Cook’s Warehouse soon! Since this chimichurri sauce is comprised of cilantro, parsley, lime, and cumin (along with a slew of other ingredients like ginger, cinnamon, garlic, EVOO, sugar), we went with the Mexican theme and paired it with some Spanish rice and delicious veggie mix. Easy peasy: Marinate shrimp for a few hours and throw on the grill on skewers for like 5-6 minutes until JUST pink!


My dad makes a really good Spanish rice with those canned diced tomatoes with jalapenos or chiles, tomato paste, onions, garlic, and chicken broth I think. Then for a quick improvised veggie dish, I sauteed some cauliflower, kale, red beans, and corn with a spice mixture of paprika, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, S&P. To thicken it up, I also added some tomato paste and chicken broth. Make this marinade this summer for any grilled food or as a pretty topping 🙂

DSCN1351Use your leftover ginger to make a stir-fry later on or some of that peanut sauce from my post a few months ago. It’s also great for making apple-ginger muffins that have a real kick




DSCN1358She’s a skewer pro



Buttermilk Brined Chicken with BEETS



Poor performance on my attendance to this blog. Apologies. It’s been a busy June and although I’ve cooked quite a bit, I haven’t had much time to post and take pics. Also, my camera broke so I’m borrowing my sister’s cam and my mom’s iPad.

Here’s a little recap of some of the cooking extravaganza’s of late:

– We went to St. Augustine, FL and baked molten lava cakes for the first time. My mom has discovered a new age cooking technique. I call it yoga-mixing, mostly because she was beating eggs and butter and sugar together whilst holding the yoga-tree position steadily for a solid 4 minutes. Clearly we are a bit of ying and yang in the kitchen since I have zero flexibility but manage to coordinate baking lava cakes until juuuuust done.

– I tried  to make cauliflower pizza crust with Arianna which was cheesy but a bit off. She’s used to my crazy attempts and puts up with my antics, so it was still some good sisterly bonding time!

– We made some homemade peach ice cream for Father’s Day which was delicious except for the fresh peaches part. My suggestion is that you stick to the pureed peaches for the flavor and if you really want chunks, add them AFTER you’ve fully prepared the ice cream according to the maker’s instructions. Otherwise they become essentially ice chunks.

– I got the Party like a Culinista cookbook!!!! Woop woop. I keep taking it in the car with me for “a little light reading.” Dont ask…but now I’m sooo excited to make some of the recipes!

Ok, back to the meat of the post. HA. My best  friend’s mom is my recipe guy, okay well recipe girl. I wish I lived in a big city where I could be like, “Yea these beets are going to be great because you know I’ve got a great beet guy.” What I’m trying to say is my best friend Cessie’s mom is an amazing chef and everytime I want to get the deets on a recipe, she can tell me if it’s legit or not. She raves about Deb’s buttermilk roast chicken so since I had some leftover buttermilk, we thought we’d try it.

In the summertime, we try to use the grill as much as possible, so we improvised a bit. My dad’s a little obsessed with our pizza stone, so we tried it as a “pan” on the grill. Success! On one half of the grill, we grilled some beets wrapped in foil that we bought at a local farmer’s market. Then we let the pizza stone heat up before adding the chicken directly on top. If only it hadn’t been raining….

To prepare this chicken, basically follow the marinade on Deb’s recipe (we halved it) and let your chicken juice up for a few hours or overnight. We had some boneless skinless breasts, so the cooking time was pretty short for us, but she says you can use any cuts of chicken. When I make this again, I will definitely let it marinate overnight to increase tenderness. After reading some of the comments on her post, I found out that the buttermilk is the magic ingredient to the most tender chicken. I agree! And it’s a very easy recipe good for beginners!

Ingredients for marinade (minus the buttermilk)



Smashing the garlic helps let out some of the flavor


I call this one “the art of arranging food” because my Dad was showing me how I needed to better arrange the beets around the chicken. It was totally worth me stepping away because he really is good at food styling!! **Thanks Dad**

photo (25)


photo (23)

Popcorn cookies to share



**This one goes out to you Coffield**

I’ve been wanting to try this recipe ever since I got the Smitten Kitchen cookbook back in December. After reading Deb’s hysterical writing on how she decided to add popcorn to a cookie recipe, I couldn’t help but feel that maybe I was in on the funny story too? Like I was actually in on the joke with her. So as I’m making this cookies, I was smiling to myself about this joke that I have with Deb Perelman but now that I’m thinking about it, I was just unnaturally happy because Deb and I weren’t laughing back and forth together….in fact, I just made the cookies by myself.



Well I certainly didn’t eat them by myself! I whipped these up for the first summer barbeque back in Atlanta for a reunion of sorts. Though I wanted to make a pie or some sort of fruit dessert to contribute to the pulled pork, buttermilk chicken, and cheese grits dinner, these were the easiest to transport. And you know, since we’re only two months or so out from the Great Cake Toppling of 2013, I’m still recovering. Recap: cookies are easy to drive over to a friend’s house. Or, when you’re sharing a car with my popular sister, they’re easy to carry in the passenger seat when you’re getting dropped off.

These cookies made my house smell so good, from the lingering buttery popcorn smell to that quintessential creamed butter and sugar marriage that brings a smile to my face. There was no wasting in this recipe either. Though my sister decided she didn’t want to join me in baking, the smell of popcorn is sure to lure her out of her room. Those extra popcorn pieces really brought us together!

I think these were recieved quite well, however I would like to add chocolate chunks to the recipe next time. I think they needed some more flavor along with the crunchiness of the popcorn. Let me know what you think if you’ve also tried this recipe! The next day, I made some cracker-jack-salty-peanut-chocolate cookies to remedy my longing for chocolate.