Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween 2011

Embroidery Designs: 
Bow: Tutorial Coming this Friday!

Prettiest butterfly I have ever seen!

I hope you all have wonderful night celebrating!
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Friday, October 28, 2011

Deep South Eats: Corn Bread Deluxe

As the fall temperatures continue to drop, there is nothing that sounds better for dinner than a big bowl of soup with corn bread. There are so many recipes out there that are absolutely delicious. When I am looking for a rich, moist corn bread with that extra oomph, I turn to Corn Bread Deluxe from the Puffy Muffin cookbook. Serve it alongside a bowl of chili or even a vegetable plate and you will not be disappointed.


  • 1 1/2 cups self-rising cornmeal (yellow or white will work fine)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup cream-style corn
  • 2 Tablespoons onion, chopped (can be left out if you have picky eaters in your house)
  • 2 eggs, gently whisked together
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • If using a iron skillet, grease and preheat as well. If using any other baking pan, spray with cooking spray to coat the sides and bottom.
  • Gently mix all of the ingredients by hand and pour into prepared pan.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.
Don't forget to check out the Sprinkled with Love Baby Shower post from earlier this week.

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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Deep South Party: Sprinkled with Love Baby Shower

After helping host such a fun, Southern Wedding Shower with my mom I was excited for the next shower on her list. A good friend of our family is expecting a baby girl and we eagerly anticipated showering Lauren and Baby Girl (and Derek of course). When I think of Lauren, I think bold, beautiful and fun. I came across this adorable Sprinkled with Love baby shower at Hostess with the Mostess and knew the modern feel was perfect for Lauren. Using the bright, primary colors Lauren is planning for the baby's nursery gave my mom and I a new take on the Sprinkled with Love theme!

Our idea was solidified after we found these precious invitations from Minted.
Photo courtesy of

The table in the dining room adjacent to the foyer made a place for guests to sign or write a note in the children's book Guess How Much I Love You. With a copy of the invitation on the inside cover this book gives a wonderful memory of a special day. Pictures of Lauren and Derek over the years were fun to peruse.

Simple, primary colored hearts were cut out and threaded together to make a banner in the living room.

I know it is "pre-food" but this is the only picture I took of the balloon centerpiece. Imagine a cake stand full of decadent, red velvet cupcakes "sprinkled" with red crystal sprinkles. I love the way the heart bunting turned out in the background. I even saved it to pull out for Valentine's decorations.

Popcorn from Heavenly Gourmet Popcorn "sprinkled" with White Cheddar, Dill Pickle and Jalapeno Ranch flavoring.

Pigs-in-a-blanket "sprinkled" with cheddar cheese.

Vanilla cupcakes with caramel frosting and sprinkles...of course.

Chocolate cupcakes with chocolate buttercream.

The lemon bars "sprinkled" with powdered sugar were disappearing. I have never had to refill a platter so many times!

Lemonade "sprinkled" with strawberries and ice water.

The glowing mom-to-be, Lauren and her beautiful mother, Susan.
How blessed is this baby girl to be joining such a wonderful group of women?
Lauren's mother-in-law, mother, Lauren and grandmother.

Thank you Lauren for letting us share such a special day with you!

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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Deep South Eats: Mongolian Beef

I saw this pin for Mongolian Beef and finally decided I had to try it out. I am so glad I was excellent and very easy. This recipe is perfect for a weeknight meal because it can be made quickly, is very filling and will be enjoyed by even the pickiest eater. The beef was tender with the perfect balance of sweet and salty. It served well with brown rice and fresh, steamed broccoli.


  • 2/3 pound flank steak, sliced thinly across the grain (if you have the time, tenderize with small diagonal cuts to make a diamond pattern from this recipe, before slicing thinly across the grain)
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 teaspoons canola oil, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger (may substitute for 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon (heaping) red pepper flakes
  • pinch of salt
  • 2-3 large green onions, sliced
  • Pat the steak slices with a paper towel to wick away any excess moisture.
  • Toss the steak and cornstarch together. Shake away excess corn starch using a fine mesh strainer.
  • Mix together the soy sauce, water, brown sugar, red pepper flakes and pinch of salt (if substituting ground ginger for fresh, add it to this mixture) in a small bowl.
  • Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons of the oil in a large skillet or wok at medium-high heat and add garlic and fresh ginger. Cook for 30 seconds and slowly pour in soy sauce mixture. Cook for another 2 minutes and return pan contents to small bowl.
  • Turn the heat up to high and add the last 1 1/2 teaspoons of oil. Add the beef slices and cook, stirring until just browned.
  • Pour the sauce back into the pan and cook with meat, simmering for about 5 minutes or until thickened.
  • Place beef mixture on a bed of rice and top with sliced green onions.
This was wonderful with brown rice and fresh steamed broccoli.

Original recipe found at Handle the Heat.

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Monday, October 24, 2011

The Sweet Kitchen: What's on the Menu?

When it gets down to halfway through working 4 out 5 evenings, my ambition to cook exciting meals on work nights goes way down. Instead it becomes a survival mode of "make it work" at our house. After tomorrow night I am off for another two weeks which means many exciting recipes coming your way!

Monday (Work Night): Hot Dogs, Baked Beans and Fruit
Tuesday (Work Night): Pizza and Salad
Wednesday: Chicken Piccata with Angel Hair and Parmesan Roasted Tomatoes
Thursday: Corn Chowder with Sour Cream Pocketbook Rolls and Sugared Raspberries
Friday: Halloween Party at my husband's polo club
Saturday: Benefit Dinner for some friends of ours moving to Kenya for mission work
Sunday: Out to Eat after Trunk and Treat

Inspiration: Pinterest, Southern Plate, and Southern Living

What are you all eating at your house this week? I am most excited about making the rolls, so I can freeze the extras!

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Friday, October 21, 2011

Deep South Treats: Spooktacular Oreo Treats

How many of you all have fun Halloween parties coming up?
My sister-in-law, Michele had a precious party last night for the kids and I needed a quick treat to take to our wonderful hostess.
I pinned some Oreo Treats on Pinterest a while back and knew they would be perfect!
They are just like Rice Krispy Treats only with Oreos.

  • 1 regular sized package of Oreos (16 oz)
  • 5 cups marshmallows
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • Butter a square baking dish and cut Parchment paper to fit with a little overlap on two sides. Butter the parchment paper.
  • Remove Oreos from package and place in large ziploc bag. Seal tightly and take some anger out by crushing those Oreos. I used a combo of the rolling pin and smooth side of my meat mallet. You could also use a food processor if you are one of those people with no stress in your life.
  • In a microwave safe bowl, place marshmallows and butter. Heat for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes until puffed up.
  • Stir in Oreo crumbs until well combined.
  • Press into prepared pan (spray a little Pam on your hands to stop the sticking) and allow to set for at least 10 minutes.
  • Cut into bars (I cut for 16 bars). 
  • Put a few in a bag and tie with cute ribbon for a great Halloween treat. 
Original recipe source: Sweet Peas Kitchen
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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Deep South Eats: Broccoli Salad

***I left out an ingredient and have updated since this was first published.

Who has been to a potluck lately where there wasn't a broccoli salad? I sure haven't. A while back I had a craving for this salty-sweet goodness. I turned to my favorite resource for Southern cooking, Southern Plate, and found a delicious recipe. I made a few alterations to account for my family's taste preference, and it was a hit. I feel like the longer it sat in my refrigerator the better it became.

  • 4 to 5 cups chopped fresh broccoli (I prefer to chop just the florets but go ahead and throw the stems and stalks if you prefer)
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries (Craisins)
  • 1/2 pound bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1 cup mayonnaise (I used light mayo with fantastic results)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • Place the broccoli in a large bowl and add the Craisins, bacon, onion, cheese and sunflower seeds.
  • In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sugar, and vinegar until the sugar is dissolved to make a dressing.
  • Pour the dressing over the broccoli mixture and stir to coat.
  • Refrigerate until ready to serve.
This was served with ham rolls and fresh fruit. What is your favorite entree for broccoli salad?

Original recipe at

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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Deep South Party: Southern Wedding Shower

Last year in August, I threw a lovely shower for a friend who was having a very Southern wedding in Charleston. It was a celebration in burlap, hydrangeas. This year a friend of our family since childhood is getting married, and I jumped at the chance to help my mother with their Southern shower.

Our guests of honor
Reggie and Anna

It all started with these lovely invitations from
image courtesy of

Pears in a wide-mouth jar helped arrange the cotton stalks.
A chalkboard easel welcoming guests to the party.

Cotton stalks with limelight hydrangeas and magnolia leaves were a beautiful centerpiece atop a burlap overlay.

Mini mason jars with cream roses and cream candles added a simple but elegant decoration in the kitchen area.

Chocolate, strawberry and coconut cakes compliments of Wrights Gourmet.
These cakes were so moist (yikes, hate that word) that they were literally falling off the forks.
Everyone was fighting over not having to cut the cakes because it was soo messy but delicious.

Fruit placed on bamboo skewers was a fun way to serve the traditional "shower" fruit.

The amazing women who made this day possible.

And because I can....
Check out my amazing cousin (Graham) and best friend (Ashley) of Scobey Photography.
A wedding they shot a while back was featured in the winter of edition of Get Married Magazine.
I already knew they were amazing, but this just adds to the pride!

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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Deep South Eats: Garlic Mashed Potatoes

A month ago I featured MeMe’s Mashed Potatoes. They were creamy and classic with a surprise of evaporated milk. This past week my husband celebrated his 30th birthday. He requested I make an “oldie but goody” recipe of Garlic Mashed Potatoes. The recipe is from a good friend, Stephanie, who I believe received it from one of her friends. They are decadent and savory with enough garlic that you will still be smelling it on your fingers a week later (no...seriously).

The question is….are you creamy and classic or decadent and savory?

  • 5 lbs. red potatoes, washed and cubed
  • 8oz block of cream cheese, softened
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 10-15 cloves of garlic, peeled, smashed and coarsely chopped
  • 8 oz heavy cream (I have used milk in a pinch)
  • Salt
  • Place potatoes in a large stock pot and add enough water to cover the tops of the potatoes.
  • Bring potatoes to a boil and boil 15-20 minutes until fork-tender.
  • While potatoes are boiling, melt butter in saute pan and add garlic. Simmer until soft.
  • Drain potatoes and return to stock pot. 
  • Add cream cheese, garlic mixture, and heavy cream to potatoes and mix until smooth.
  • Add salt to taste.
Don't forget to check out MeMe's Mashed Potatoes if you are interested in trying both recipes out. I would love to hear what recipe of mashed potatoes are your favorite.

Up tomorrow: A Southern Shower Take Two

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Monday, October 17, 2011

The Sweet Kitchen: What's on the Menu?

Do you ever have times in your life that seem completely out of control? The last few weeks since our return from Italy have been absolutely out of control. We have had company retreats, kidney stones, food poisoning (not from my own cooking), high fevers and a 30th birthday for my dear husband. There is nothing I have wanted more than to sit down and blog a ton of fun stuff out to you guys. I think I have finally come up for air and am ready to return to the ol' blog.

Weekly Menu Inspiration: Deep South Eats Pinterest Pins

Monday: Leftovers (there is some serious fridge cleaning out to be done)
Tuesday: Chicken Soup with White and Wild Rice, Spinach Salad with Fresh Raspberries, and Cheese Muffins
Wednesday: Mongolian Beef, Brown Rice, and Sweet and Sour Broccoli
Thursday: Brown Sugar and Balsamic Glazed Pork Loin (slow cooker - woohoo), Cheesy Corn Casserole and Green Beans
Friday (Work Night): Leftovers
Saturday (Work Night): Daddy & Daughter Date Night Out while I deliver sweet babies at the hospital
Sunday: Small Group Meal

What are you all cooking this week and what is inspiring you?

On the blog menu for tomorrow: A Tale of Two Potatoes (mashed that is).

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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Sweet Kitchen: Whats on the Menu?

Well I apologize for the lack of posting lately, but we have been in ....Italy. I will definitely tell you guys more about my trip which was absolutely wonderful, but my first priority is catching up on about 2 weeks of laundry. In the meantime, since we have had our fill of pizza and pasta, our weekly menu is filled with classics and vegetables (that were terribly lacking in our diet last week).

Monday: Poppy Seed Chicken, Roasted Green Beans, and Corn Kernels
Tuesday: Taco Salads with Mini Cheese Quesadillas
Wednesday: Maple Mustard Ham Steaks, Baked Rice, and Sweet and Sour Broccoli
Thursday: Leftovers
Friday: Dinner at Reynolds Plantation
Saturday: Dinner at Reynolds Plantation
Sunday: Small Group Dinner

What is on the menu at your house this week?
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