National Rum Day

As most of you know, Mac & I like to have cocktail or two.  This means I’ll take a drink recipe and then add some type of alcohol. Today being Rum Day I thought I would share some beverages that I previously posted: Basil & Tea Mojito; Beer Mojito; Watermelon Slushie; and Apple Smash.

With rum being the alcohol in mojitos it only makes sense that 2 out of the 4 beverages are mojitos. The other beverage that I like is the basic Rum & Coke.  This is simply a shot of rum (can be spiced or regular) with a dark cola over ice. A squeeze of lime adds a nice twist. During the holidays, I do like a bit of spiced rum in my eggnog. So delicious!!

So no matter your preferences, have a nice drink with a dab of rum.

Creamsicle Smoothie

One of my favorite store bought ice creams when I was growing up was the orange creamsicle. I loved the vanilla inside the orange sherbet like shell. Whenever I see anything that sounds like this flavor, I have to try it. Here is a great smoothie recipe for this Creamsicle Day. Enjoy!

1 peeled & frozen navel orange
½ c. orange juice
1 c. plain yogurt
1 Tbsp. Vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. Honey
1 c. ice cubes

Combine all ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth.

Steak & Peppers with Chimichurri

The secret to this recipe from BHG Magazine is the Chimichurri sauce.  It gives that extra kick to a delicious steak. I didn’t have a yellow sweet pepper so I used a green bell pepper.

1 ½ to 1 ¾ lb. Beef flank steak
2 Tbsp. Plus 2 tsp. Olive oil
2 pablano peppers, stemmed & seeded
1 lg. Red onion, cut into 1/2” wedges
1 med. Yellow sweet pepper
1 c. cilantro, coarsely chopped
1 jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
2 Tbsp. Lime juice
1 tsp. Dried oregano, crushed
1 clove garlic, minced

Season steak with ½ teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper; set aside. Cut pablano & sweet peppers into 3/4″ strips. Heat a heavy 12” skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil. Add peppers, onion and a large pinch of salt. Cook 5 minutes without stirring. Cook 5 minutes more, stirring once, or until vegetables are lightly charred and tender. Remove from skillet; keep warm.

Add remaining oil to the skillet. Add steak. Cook 12 to 15 minutes or until medium-rare (145F), turning once halfway through. Transfer steak to a cutting board. Cover, let stand 5 minutes. Slice steak; serve with pepper-onion mixture and chimichurri.

FOR CHIMICHURRI: In a small bowl, combine cilantro, jalapeno, lime juice, oregano, garlic and a pinch of salt. Stir in 2 teaspoon oil.

Sneak Some Zucchini onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Day

We planted one zucchini plant this year.  Usually you get more squash than you can eat. Not this year. We have only gotten 2 huge zucchini and a couple small ones.  It’s funny that we pick vegetables on Friday before going to work on the weekend.  Than on Monday we end up with this size of zucchini. How did we miss it on Friday?

Whether you grow your own zucchini or buy them at the store. Try this Zucchini Parmesan Crisps by Ellie Krieger, Food Network.

Cooking spray
2 medium zucchini (about 1 pound total)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan (¾ ounce)
1/4 cup plain dry bread crumbs
1/8 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.

Slice the zucchini into ¼ inch thick rounds. In a medium bowl, toss the zucchini with the oil. In a small bowl, combine the Parmesan, bread crumbs, salt, and a few turns of pepper. Dip each round into the Parmesan mixture, coating it evenly on both sides, pressing the coating on to stick, and place in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet.

Bake the zucchini rounds until browned and crisp, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove with spatula. Serve immediately.

Dijon-Maple Salmon

¼ c. maple syrup
2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. Minced garlic
¼ tsp. Ground ginger
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
4 salmon fillets (1 lb.)
1 Tbsp. Oil

Mix first 5 ingredients. Refrigerate syrup mixture for 30 minutes.

Brush fish with oil. Heat skillet to medium-high heat. Place fish in skillet; cook 10 minutes or until fish flakes easily with fork, turning and brushing occasionally with syrup mixture.

Watermelon & Cheese Snacks

Here is an easy appetizer or mid-day snack for Watermelon Day. Cut  some watermelon into cubes. Then take whatever mild cheese you have and cut into cubes also. I used Swiss cheese but Baby Bel or Monterey Jack would also work. The next choice is what type of skewers to use. You can use the long bamboo or metal skewers. I used some small cocktail sword skewers for small bite size snacks.You will notice that I placed some extra watermelon cubes in the center of my plate since I had some extra watermelon cut.

Lime Guacamole

Today is Avocado Day and what can you make with avocados – guacamole. The lime juice and Serrano peppers give this guacamole a little kick.


2 ripe avocados
½ tsp. Kosher salt
2 Tbsp. Fresh lime juice
2-4 Tbsp. Minced red onion
2 Serrano peppers, seeded & minced
2 Tbsp. Cilantro leaves, finely chopped
Dash of freshly ground black pepper
½ ripe tomato, chopped

 

Slice avocados in half and remove seed. Using a spoon, scoop flesh into a medium bowl. Roughly mash with a fork. Stir in salt, lime juice, onion, peppers and cilantro. Season to taste with black pepper.

Refrigerate, covered until ready to serve. Stir in chopped tomato and adjust seasons if desired.