Friday, July 29, 2011

Deep South Party: Sneak Peak

A little teaser for a party coming up next month. 
Finished up the invites yesterday and love them!

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Thursday, July 28, 2011

Deep South Eats: Sesame Broccoli

I have had the recipe for Sesame Broccoli flagged for quite some time. All I can say now is why did I not try it sooner? It is incredibly easy to make and the taste is phenomenal. I am so glad to have another quick, easy and very healthy side dish in my arsenal. Everyone in my family that ate this went back for seconds, even my husband which is amazing that he even consumed a green vegetable to start with. I would seriously make this every other day if it weren't for the potentially scary effects of eating broccoli every other day.


  • 1 pound of fresh broccoli cut into spears
  • 1 Tablespoon of sugar (helps the medicine go down you know)
  • 1 Tablespoon of soy sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon of vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons of vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons of toasted sesame seeds (you can toast these yourself or buy pretoasted and warm them up a tad)


  • Steam broccoli in steamer, steam basket or microwave for 5 minutes until crisp-tender. I prefer to steam our broccoli in the microwave in a covered casserole dish with 1 Tablespoon of water because it is less to clean up and the covered dish can become a serving dish if needed. Place steamed broccoli on a serving platter in even layer.
  • Stir together sugar, soy sauce, oil and vinegar in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, until sugar is completely dissolved and mixture is heated through.
  • Drizzle sauce over broccoli and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
  • Serve immediately.
Original recipe from Southern Living Quick and Easy Weeknight Meals which is apparently out of print.

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Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Sweet Kitchen: Whats on the Menu....And a Winner!

I do apologize for the lack of posting the last few days. We decided to take an impromptu road trip with my husband on one of his business trips. You see the hotel that he was staying at had an AWESOME pool, and what is a better way to beat this Southern heat?

After a road trip where I consumed enough junk food to make me feel absolutely disgusting, we are keeping the menu this week light! Lots of fruits and veggies this week to balance the grease that was consumed.

Monday: Out of Town
Tuesday: Out of Town
Wednesday: Taco Salad with Chipotle Ranch Dressing*, Fresh Fruit
Thursday: Grilled Cheese with White Cheddar, Bacon and Tomato* with Strawberry Spinach Salad*
Friday: Girl's Night at Our Home (I am making the salty foods like my famous Hot Onion Dip*, Pork Empanadas*, and Bruschetta*)
Saturday: Grilled Chicken Tenderloins in a Honey Lime Marinade*, Oven Roasted Potatoes, and Grilled Green Beans*
Sunday: Leftovers

And of course the winner of the Southern Cakes giveaway using is ... Alli! Email me your address at and I will get it in the mail!

I am planning on starting a monthly giveaway that will debut at the first of the month each month. Some months may be bigger things and others will be a group of small items!
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Saturday, July 23, 2011

Saturday Sweets: Southern Cakes Giveaway

Who loves cake? If your hand isn't raised...flee...flee for your life. Cakes to me are a true work of art no matter how simple. There is a glimpse into true perfection when you cut into a cake and the layers look so even and level and the icing is just the right amount. 

A few weeks ago I was in one of my favorite stores in Brunswick, Georgia, The Market on Newcastle, which is full of all kinds of hilarious books including People of Walmart and Pat the Husband. In addition to always finding an addition to my quirky book collection they have awesome gifts and cookbooks. I found this cookbook, Southern Cakes. I think it was written personally for me. I searched the foreword and acknowledgement and think the author may have just had a slip of mind in not dedicating the book to this girl.

I quickly added it to my wish list along with its sister book Southern Pies (I would have purchased it right then and there but shopping with a three year old is so easy you know). There are so many awesome recipes in this book and I love how the author gives a little background into each recipe. I can't wait to try the Caramel Cake, Brown Sugar Pound Cake, and the Buttermilk Cake with Old-Time Fudge Icing.

I love this cookbook so much that I would like to share a copy with one of my readers!
Southern Cakes: Sweet and Irresistible Recipes for Everyday Celebrations

Three ways to enter:
1. Tell me your favorite kind of cake.
2. Become a follower of Deep South Sweets (and leave me a comment saying you are a follower).
3. Become a Facebook fan of Deep South Sweets (same as above).

Giveaway ends Monday, July 25 at 8:00pm EST

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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Deep South Eats: Sweet and Savory Flank Steak

Sweet and Savory Flank Steak is a regular contender around our house. It is super easy and amazingly flavorful. I love to throw it together on a Saturday morning, let it marinate all day and have a delicious dinner ready for that night. I could see this being served on a bed of mixed greens with for a quick weeknight salad. We love it with some fresh summer veggies like grilled corn, asparagus, or crisp broccoli. If you intend to make this for a party larger than 4 I would most definitely double the recipe as it gets eaten very quickly and the leftovers are still fantastic.

Assemble the necessary ingredients: up to 2lbs of flank steak, pineapple juice, soy sauce, olive oil, ginger (ground or fresh - I use ground because it is cheaper and always on hand), brown sugar, 4-5 cloves of garlic.

Score your 2lb flank steak using a diagonal line diamond pattern. Take care not to go too deep, and use only the tip of your knife. This helps to tenderize the meat.

Now lets make the marinade. Stand a large ziploc bag up inside of a mixing bowl. Roll the zipper edge over towards the outside.

Add 1 cup of pineapple juice, 1/2 cup of soy sauce, 1/2 cup of olive oil, 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 1 Tablespoon of fresh ginger/ 1/8 teaspoon of ground ginger, and 4 to 5 cloves of garlic finely minced to the bag and mix well.

Remove 1/4 cup of marinade and set aside in refrigerator.

Add flank steak to the bag and turn to coat. Seal bag making sure to remove any air. Refrigerate 8 hours or overnight. Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes prior to grilling.

Place steak on grill and cook 5 to 10 minutes each side. Use the marinade that was set aside previously to brush over steak while grilling. Flank steak should still be pink in the middle when done cooking. Remove from grill and allow to stand for 5 minutes prior to slicing.

Slice flank steak at an angle against the grain to give you even thin slices, and enjoy!

Flank steak may also be cooked under a broiler if you are lacking a grill. Broil on broiler pan on the upper rack for about 5 to 10 minutes per side. Watch carefully to make sure it doesn't burn! You can always move your rack down if it appears to be burning too much.

Original recipe from Our Best Bites.

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Monday, July 18, 2011

The Sweet Kitchen: Whats on the Menu?

This week is BUSY, BUSY, BUSY! I am working like a mad woman (for me) and then will enjoy a nice length of time off. I still want to work in some new recipes, but have to find things that fall in the quick and easy category.

Monday (Work Night): Grilled Cheese Sandwiches with Tomato Soup (totally bring this over from last week as it did not actually happen last week)
Tuesday: Enchilada Casserole with Fresh Fruit Salad
Wednesday (Work Night): Leftovers
Thursday (Work Night): Barbecue Pork Chops, Mashed Potates and Green Beans with Garlic Butter
Friday: Tomato Basil Pizza and Tossed Garden Salad
Saturday: Flank Steak with Rice Pilaf and Sesame Broccoli
Sunday: Small Group Bible Study Meal

What are you eating this week?

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Friday, July 15, 2011

Deep South Home: Controlling a Fruit Fly Invasion

It seems that every single summer we have a fruit fly invasion. It always comes on the heels of a return from being out of town and forgetting to have someone take our trash cans out on trash day. Slowly over the few days after returning from vacation the fruit flies have their own vacation and migrate from the trash can into our home. They drive me absolutely insane!!! After a few years of dealing with small invasions here and there I have learned how to get it under control in the shortest amount of time possible.

  1. Clean any dishes out of your sink and wipe your sink and counter tops down very well. 
  2. Clean your disposal (make sure it is clear of any food scraps) and send a little bleach down all your sinks in your house.
  3. Sweep your floors to make sure there are no little crumbs that they can get.
  4. Make a trap for the remaining little boogers: fill a glass jar with fruit juice, white wine vinegar, or cider vinegar; add a little bit of vegetable oil or dish soap (helps trap the flies); cover the jar with plastic wrap and poke little holes in the top. Over time the flies will fly in and get stuck in the liquid (if you are for trapping them alive and releasing look elsewhere for tips). Each morning dump and the liquid outside and replace until you are no longer catching any flies.

Works in like 2-3 days hands down and you will feel like you aren't about to lose your mind over pesky fruit flies. Maybe one day I will learn to hire someone to come take our trash to the street while we are out of town, but until then...

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Thursday, July 14, 2011

Sweets from the Bookshelf: The Help

Fruit Fly Invasion 2011...dislike
Getting my chipped tooth fixed this morning...dislike
Having a new recipe completely bomb last night...dislike

Finishing reading The Help while at the beach last loved!
The Help

I am not a fantastic book reviewer, but this is in my Top 10 favorite books. Completing 480something pages in 4 days is no easy feat. I laughed, I cried (which I know is totally cliche). I felt like I knew the characters and could picture them. I loved the bravery of Miss Skeeter and the spunk of Minny. I was able to understand a little what life was like in the south for my mother as a very young girl, and ask her questions about those times.

I cannot wait to see the characters come to life in the movie this August!

What books are you loving this summer?

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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Deep South Eats: Knock You Naked Brownies

I made these babies a little while back and have no clue how I forgot to share them with you. Maybe I should rename them "Knock You Senseless Brownies" since I lost all since not to pass these beauties on to you. These brownies are amazingly rich and best when eaten in small portions (that way you have more for later of course). I think they would be great to serve company with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or wrap up and enjoy on a picnic.

  • 1 (18.5 oz) German chocolate cake mix
  • 1 cup of finely chopped pecans (I toasted mine before chopping)
  • 1/3 cup evaporated milk
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk (additional needed for different steps)
  • 60 whole caramels, unwrapped (these are found in your grocers candy section or baking usually)
  • 1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar (optional)
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a large bowl, mix together cake mix, chopped pecans, 1/3 cup of evaporated milk, and melted butter. Stir until well combined. The mixture will be very thick.
  • Pat the mixture down in your bowl until even, and score a line down the middle. Press one half of the cake mixture into a well-greased 9x9 baking pan. Bake 8 to 10 minutes (ummm so I totally missed this step the first time I made them which is why they are a little slanted in the picture above).
  • In a double boiler (you can always use a heat proof bowl over a saucepan of boiling water), melt caramels with the additional 1/2 cup of evaporated milk. When melted and well combined, pour over baked brownie base.
  • Sprinkle the chocolate chips evenly over the caramel.
  • Turn the remaining dough out onto work surface. If you have a silicone baking mat, set your baked pan on one half of the mat and turn your dough onto the other half of the mat. Shape the dough into a large square a little smaller than the pan. Use a spatula to remove it from surface and set on top of caramel and chocolate chips. If you are using a silicone mat simply flip the pressed square mat and all over onto the pan and peel back gently.
  • Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool to room temperature. Once cooled, cover and refrigerate for several hours.
  • When ready to serve, sift powdered sugar over the surface of the brownies and cut into desired number of squares. Carefully remove from pan and enjoy brownie heaven!
Original recipe from The Pioneer Woman.

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Monday, July 11, 2011

The Sweet Kitchen: Whats on the Menu?

Some weeks when I feel at a loss for what to cook, I will grab one cookbook randomly and try and plan the majority of our meals from that book alone. This week that book was Southern Living: 40 Years of Our Best Recipes. There are so many phenomenal recipes that I use out of this book, but this week I picked three that I have never tried before.

Monday (Work Night): Taco Salads and Fresh Fruit
Tuesday: Pork Tenderloin, Skillet Pecan Rice, and Steamed Broccoli
Wednesday: Turkey Piccata, Whole Wheat Linguine, and Green Beans Amandine
Thursday: Lime Grilled Chicken, Jamie's Spinach Salad
Friday (Work Night): Leftovers
Saturday: Out to Eat with Friends
Sunday (Work Night): Grilled Cheese and Soup

What is cooking at your house this week?
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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Deep South Eats: Dill Potato Salad

Hope everyone had a fabulous July 4th! Ours was wonderful with our annual tradition of watching fireworks from the roof of the beach house. In celebrating the 4th, what is more American than an excellent potato salad? I have been searching for a dill potato salad recipe to match the one I love at a local restaurant Never Enough Thyme. While I still haven't reached perfection, this recipe is SO close I can just...well...taste it.


  • 10 unpeeled red potatoes
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 Tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 white onion, minced
  • 1 stalk of celery, finely diced
  • 1 teaspoon of celery salt
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon of dried dill weed
  • Place potatoes in a large pot and cover with water.
  • Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium (medium-low if you want more firm potatoes) and simmer until potatoes are cooked through. I prefer soft potatoes in my potato salad so I cook 25-30 minutes. If you prefer more firm potatoes cook about 20 minutes.
  • Remove potatoes from water and let cool. Cut in to small bite size pieces and set aside.
  • In a bowl, stir together sour cream, mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, onion, celery, celery salt, and salt and pepper to taste.
  • Place potatoes in large bowl and sprinkle with dried dill. Pour the dressing over the potatoes and mix lightly.
  • Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and serve cold.
Original recipe: Southern Dill Potato Salad from (I omitted the eggs and Dijon mustard because I knew they were not in the potato salad I was trying to achieve).

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Friday, July 1, 2011

Deep South Eats: Tomato Basil Pizza

I obviously have a fondness for all things tomato basil as evidenced by past recipes of Tomato Basil Soup and Tomato Corn Salad (with fresh basil). This Tomato Basil Pizza tops the charts and is just absolutely amazing. It was one of those meals that I just could have devoured every last bite (had it not been waist line enhancing). The pesto instead of fresh basil adds so much flavor and saves you precious time.

  • 1 whole recipe of your favorite pizza dough (homemade or store bought)
  • 1 jar of prepared pesto (if serving to company be aware that your pesto might contain pine nuts for those with allergies)
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • Fresh mozzarella
  • Roma tomatoes - I used approximately 4 for the size of pizza I was making
  • Parmesan cheese

  • Preheat oven to 500 degrees.
  • Press the pizza dough into a sheet pan (a pizza stone will work fine too). Lesson learned - use a large enough pan to allow for expansion. I used too small of a pan and had stuff spilling over into my oven.
  • Smear the pesto over the crust leaving a one-inch border and sprinkle with Kosher salt.
  • Slice the mozzarella thin and cover the pizza.
  • Slice the Roma tomatoes thinly and lay evenly on top of the mozzarella.
  • Grate some fresh Parmesan cheese over the entire pizza.
  • Bake according to your crust of choice directions.
This pizza is super easy and so good. It serves nicely with a tossed garden salad.

Original recipe from The Pioneer Woman.
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