Thursday, August 31, 2017

Feeling Thankful on a Thursday and the Weekly Menu, early for a change......

My husband, Frank, went into the hospital yesterday for a heart cath.  He had 2 stents put in a couple of years ago after this vacation when we noticed that he got very breathless with very little exertion.

While on our Alaskan Cruise a couple of weeks ago we again noticed that he was getting breathlesss
without sufficient reason.  I urged him to call the cardiologist when we got home and they scheduled him for a stress test which resulted in yesterday's heart cath.  They found another blockage in the same area as the first two stents but lower in the artery.  Another stent was installed and he spent the night in the hospital.

He is being released this morning and will have no physical restrictions so we will be able to start a walking program in earnest and hopefully prevent this from recurring.

This makes me very happy because I really like having this goofy guy in my life.  Here he is getting ready to join Lili and Spencer in the hot tub last Friday.  

I was scheduled to have a DoTerra Oil party this Saturday but, since I wasn't home to prepare and only 2 of my friends were available, I have canceled it.  Amy is having a party next month and my group will be invited to hers.

Saturday Pierre and Nicole will have a booth at the art fair in a neighboring town so perhaps we will stroll around there before Mass on Saturday night.  After Mass, we will walk across to the river where our little town is also hosting an art fair.

Sunday we are picking up Lili at her dorm and going to spend the morning at Eastern Market, a large farmer's market in the City of Detroit.  I think we are going to love having our Lilibug only an hour away as opposed to the 5 hours to get up north to see her.

Monday is Labor Day.  We don't have any plans as of yet but if the weather warms up we will probably hang out around the pool.  If the weather doesn't warm up we may be closing up the pool.

On Wednesday, late afternoon, Frank is having a refresher course for our friend, Fr. Slaten and his friend, Fr. White.  They will join us for dinner after the class.

Thursday, I am meeting my friend, Sue, for lunch.  It has been far too long since we have gotten together. Thursday night choir practice begins again for the year.

So that's my upcoming week....hope yours is just as pleasant.  You will find our Weekly Menu below. What's on your menu this week?

Pork with Pears
Walnut Wild Rice
Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Hamburger and Cabbage Casserole

Meatless Monday
Kale and White Bean Stew

Pork Chop Suey
Steamed Brown Rice

Wednesday-CPL Class
Braised Beef Shank Gremolata
Buttered Egg Noodles
Steamed Broccoli
Honey Chia Seed Pudding


Fish Friday
Cod with Lentils

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

The Rachel Burger

Oftentimes, when Frank gets a hankering and we go to the deli so he can have a Reuben, I will enjoy a Rachel.

I prefer coleslaw on my sandwich over sauerkraut. I do like my Sauerkraut adapted from my mother in law's recipe, but don't care for the stuff right out of the jar, bag or can.  The dressing on the slaw for this burger is a homemade Thousand Island.  Perfect for a Rachel burger.

Turkey and Corned Beef are pretty much even on my likeness scale. It depends completely on my mood on any given day.  It would be kind of hard to make a burger from corned beef though so we are using turkey today.  Ground turkey stuffed with swiss cheese, yum!!

Each patty is 1/4 lb., consisting of 2 thin patties covering a mound of shredded Swiss cheese.  You could use slices as well but I had shredded in the fridge.  Brown them up in a pan.  A cast iron skillet is perfect for these burgers if you have one.

Place it on toasted rye bread with some of the slaw and a little extra dressing, if you like, and it is ready to serve.

I was on the FMD eating plan when I made these burgers.  They would be Phase 3 friendly if omitting the cheese and using sprouted grain bread.  I didn't.....I cheated and I'm glad I did....they were delicious.

This recipe was called Swiss Cheese Stuffed Turkey Burgers with Thousand Island Slaw in the Cuisine at Home where I found it.  I thought that was a pretty big mouthful.  I named it after my favorite sandwich as it had all the same great flavors.  I hope you enjoy it as much as we.

The Rachel Burger
adapted from Cuisine at Home, Issue #47

1 lb ground turkey burger
2 T. applesauce
salt and pepper, to taste
4 T. shredded Swiss cheese
8 slices rye bread, toasted
1/2 c. safflower oil mayonnaise
1 T. ketchup
1 T. sweet relish
1 T. chili sauce
juice of 1/2 a lemon
1 t. grated horseradish
2 c. cabbage, thinly shrredded
1/2 c. red onion, thinly sliced

Using clean hands, incorporate the applesauce, salt and pepper into the turkey. Divide the burger into 4 equal pieces and the divide each piece in half.  Shape one piece into a patty the size of a piece of rye bread, cover with a T. of the cheese.  Shape the other piece into a patty and cover the cheese. Use a fork to crimp and seal the edges forming one patty.  Repeat 3 more times.

Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat.  Reduce heat to low and add the burgers to the skillet.  Cook each side for 7 minutes, until cooked through and a nice crust is achieved.  

Meanwhile, whisk together the mayo, ketchup, relish, chili sauce, lemon, and horseradish. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.  Remove 1/4 c. of the dressing and toss with the cabbage and onion, reserving remaining dressing.

Spread remaining dressing on the rye toast slices.  Top one piece of toast with a quarter of the slaw, one patty and another toasted rye slice. Print Recipe

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Dream Biscuits and a Book Review of "My Grandmother asked me to tell you she's sorry" #FoodiesRead

Some of you may have read my review of A Man Called Ove.  It was a great book and it turned into a good movie.

So I was excited to order up this novel by the same author.  I again ordered it on and loved the narrator, Joan Walker.  Joan did an excellent job of bringing the characters to life and what characters they were.

This is a story of a young girl, Elsa, who loses her grandmother, her very best and only friend in the world.  Grandma was a hoot.  Some thought she was certifiably crazy, but others?  Others knew she was a true superhero and did not doubt Elsa nor the stories her grandmother shared of a different kingdom in the land of almost asleep, one little bit.  In fact, as Elsa will learn, many of the people who come from that kingdom live in her very own house.

I started listening to this on the plane en route to our cruise and finished listening to it on the balcony of our ship while viewing the majesty that is Alaska.  It made for a perfect morning.

Did I like it as much as A Man Called Ove?  I did, perhaps I might have enjoyed it a smidge more.

The story revolves around all the people who live in an apartment building as seen through the eyes of Elsa.  There is the crabby busy body, the drunk, the monster, the woman in the black skirt, Elsa with her mother and stepfather who are expecting a child, the grumpy old man, the mother and son with a disorder, and the nice couple who are always quick to offer cookies whenever they see Elsa.

These cookies were called "dreams" and Elsa shares them with "the worse".  What is "the worse"?  You will just have to read or listen to the novel to find out.

The "dreams" caught my attention.  It took me a bit to realize they were cookies.  At first I thought they were a candy.  Once I knew they were cookies, I wondered if there really were such a thing.

A google search answered that they are a Swedish Cookie translated from Drömkaker.  I found numerous recipes but finally settled on this one from Saveur.

I enlisted the help of my granddaughter.  I hope some day she has great memories of our time together to help her cope with life.

We baked them up and each had one to try.  They are a dream!!  They are crispy outside, airy inside and melt in your mouth.

The rest were packaged up and taken to our Church Picnic to be enjoyed by others. You really should make these Swedish Dreams that are traditionally served at Christmas.  They are easy to make but bake slowly so take a little more time than your average cookie. 

Not to fear though because while you are waiting for them to bake you can get back to reading this wonderful novel.

I am linking up over at Foodies Reads 2017.  I love finding out what others are reading and seeing what they are inspired to create.  Head on over and check it out.

Swedish Dream Cookies
adapted from Saveur

1 2/3 c. flour
1 t. baking soda
1 stick butter, softened
1 1/4 c. sugar
1 t. vanilla
1/3 c. canola oil

In large bowl of stand mixer, fitted with paddle attachment, cream butter, sugar and vanilla, on med speed, until light and fluffy, 1-2 minutes.  Add the oil and mix until smooth.  Add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed, just until combined.

Using a small cookie scoop, place 2" apart on a parchment or silicone lined baking sheet.  Place one tray at a time in a preheated 300* oven for 25-30 minutes, until cookies are just set and cracking on the top.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool.  Print Recipe

Monday, August 28, 2017

Lemony Olive Oil Muffins #MuffinMonday

I made these lemony olive oil muffins one morning to enjoy while watching Moana with my Little Angel Face.  She is on a serious Moana kick and is going to have a Moana themed birthday party next month when she turns 3.  Yep, I blinked and now my Melody is a "big girl" who loves to help Grammy bake.  I couldn't have made these muffins without her.

When we made these muffins I was still detoxing from a week long cruise to Alaska where I spent, what felt like, 20 hrs a day eating and drinking.   We started each morning with mimosas and eggs benedict or smoked salmon platter, had coffee drinks during morning trivia, had a snack after morning trivia, cocktails with lunch, drinks by the pool after lunch, wine with dinner and after dinner cocktails while watching shows. 

I came home feeling bloated and fat!!!  The Monday I returned home, I started the Fast Metabolism Diet again for a 28 day detox that my body really needs.  

While these muffins are not FMD friendly, they are from Cooking Light, so they are healthier than your average muffin.  I had a bite to make sure they were good before giving them to Angel Face, Mama and Grampy.  They loved them and ate away while I sipped a beet and blueberry smoothie for breakfast.  I like that they only make 6 muffins, they were all gone in a day so I didn't have temptation staring me in the face.

These muffins are very lemony and light.  Perfect for a summer brunch or for a portable breakfast while watching a movie LOL.

Lemony Olive Oil Muffins
adapted from Cooking Light

1 c. flour
1/2 c. sugar
1 t. baking powder
pinch of salt
1/2 cup light sour cream
grated rind from 1 lemon, with 1 t. reserved for glaze
2 T. olive oil
2 T. rice milk or low fat milk of choice
2 t. lemon juice + 3 T. lemon juice for glaze
1 egg
1 egg white
1 c. powdered sugar

Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl.  Create a well in the center.  In a small bowl whisk together the sour cream, all but 1 teaspoon of the lemon rind, olive oil, milk, 2 teaspoons of  lemon juice, egg and egg white.  Dump into the well of the dry ingredients and mix just until combined.

Divide the batter between a 6 cup muffin tin that has been treated with baking spray.  Bake in a preheated 350* oven for 25 minutes or until a skewer inserted removes cleanly.

Cool completely on a wire rack.  While cooling, mix together the powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon lemon rind and 3 tablespoons of lemon juice.  When muffins are cool, drizzle with the glaze and allow to set before serving. Print Recipe

More Magnificent Muffins

#MuffinMonday is a group of muffin loving bakers who get together once a month to bake muffins. You can see all our of lovely muffins by following our Pinterest board.

Updated links for all of our past events and more information about Muffin Monday, can be found on our home page.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Four Bean Salad for #SundaySupper

This month, the Sunday Supper crew requested that we provide recipes that will help our readers get ready for the last hurrah of the season, Labor Day.

Labor Day is often the last big grill out event of the year.  Then kids start back to school, sports commence and fall starts to creep into the air. Grills, picnic tables and pools are replaced with Fire pits, lawn chairs and hot tubs.  I'm not ready for summer to end yet but autumn has almost gotten me entranced with the thought of cool, crisp air and long walks with the leaves crunching under my feet.

I decided to share a side dish that is perfect with whatever you decide to throw on the grill, from hotdogs to steaks.  I served mine up with the best barbecued Baby Back Ribs ever.

It helps you use up some of the beans that are prolific right now in your gardens or at roadside stands and farmer's markets.  I used a combination of yellow and green beans but you can use any fresh beans that you like and/or have on hand.  I have made this with soy beans, purple beans and fava beans.

You can also use whatever canned beans you happen to have in your cupboard, including green and yellow beans if you don't have fresh.  I happened to have kidney and garbanzo beans this time but I often use cannellini, northern, pinto and black beans.  You can have more than 4 kinds of beans as well, it just happened that these were what I had available.

There is not a lot of work involved.  Trim, halve and blanch the fresh beans.  Rinse the canned beans and chop your fresh herbs and veggies.

Toss it all together in a vinaigrette and chill until ready to serve or to take with you to your potluck. It is a great side salad when eating outdoors as there is nothing that needs to be kept cold and it can sit out without worry.

Four Bean Salad

1/2 lb each fresh green and yellow beans or 1 lb of either
1 (16 oz) can garbanzo beans
1 (16 oz) can kidney beans
1 stalk celery, diced
1/2 c. diced sweet onion
chopped fresh parsley, to taste
1/4 c. olive oil
1/4 c. red wine vinegar
2 T. sugar
salt and pepper to taste

Trim and halve the fresh beans.  Drop into boiling water for about 3 minutes.  Remove and immediately immerse into an ice bath.

Rinse the canned beans well and place into a large bowl.  Drain the fresh beans and add to the bowl with the canned beans.  Add the celery, onion and parsley to the bowl.

Place the olive oil, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper in a small jar with a lid and shake until well combined. 

Pour over the beans and vegetables.  Toss to coat and refrigerate until ready to serve.  Print Recipe

Labor Day Menu Ideas

Scrumptious Labor Day Sides and Starters

Delicious Labor Day Entrees

Luscious Labor Day Desserts

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Here's what's up....and the Weekly Menu

I had a marvelous birthday celebration.  I got tons and tons of love, gifts, cards, flowers, posts.....I was stunned and overwhelmed.

We had our Little Miss Melody and it was a gorgeous day out so we headed to the zoo to get a dose of Vitamin Z.

We looked at the fountain and watched the ducks for a while.

Then decided to get some face painting done.

My Little Princess insisted on T Rex for her face.

We visited all the animals that were out and about until we reached the restaurant where we stopped to have some lunch.

After lunch we went for a ride on the carousel, mosied on over to see if the Polar Bear felt like visiting.  He didn't.  All we saw was his tail end hanging out of his cave.  Walked back towards the exit on the other side of the park to see what animals were out and about over there and then headed back to the car.

She lasted about 5 minutes and was out for the remainder of the hour ride home, slept as we carried her into the house and wasn't happy with me when I woke her up after another hour and 15 minutes so we could make our dinner reservations.

As I write this, I am waiting for Jen, Randy and Lil to arrive.  I'm not sure if Spence is coming or if he had to work.  Keeping my fingers crossed that he is with them.  Frank is getting the steaks seasoned.  He has already shucked the corn and put the potatoes on the grill to bake.

Tomorrow, we are attending an 80th Birthday celebration for Kim's mom, Janet.  I am bringing a charcuterie board.  We are also getting our Little Miss for a few days while Mama goes on a much needed vacation.

Sunday we will go to Mass and then find something fun to do, hopefully outside if weather permits. The rest of the week we will play be ear.  We are free all week except for Wednesday which will be spent at the hospital while Frank has a procedure done.

So here is the Weekly Menu.  This Monday is #MuffinMonday and I have some Lemony Olive Oil muffins to share. of my gifts is a new Instant Pot so I will be playing with that this week and if things turn out well I will be sharing photos and recipes with you.  See you soon.

Birthday Party for Janet

Black Bean Soup
Caribbean Grilled Cheese

Grilled Sweet and Sour Pork
Steamed Brown Rice

Curry Coconut Chicken Kebabs
Coconut Couscous

TBD- Depending on Frank's Procedure


Mediterranean Shrimp Skewers
Pasta Salad

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Lemon Shred inspired by The Practice House #FoodiesRead

The Practice House was one of the deals of the week offered by Kindle.  I find that I normally enjoy the selections they make and this time was no exception.

The Practice House by [McNeal, Laura]

It is the story of  Aldine McKenna from Australia.  It begins in 1929 when Aldine comes to America seeking to find a husband and make a life for herself. 

Aldine answers an ad for a teacher in a one room school house in rural Kansas.  Aldine arrives expecting this place to be like New York, the only other location she has been in the United States.
She finds herself in the middle of the great drought.  Funds have dried up and the school has no money with which to pay or house her.  Having no money herself and too proud to ask her family for help, she finds refuge at the home of Ansel Price, the man who placed the ad.  

The Price family are dirt poor themselves and a family divided.  His wife and eldest daughter hate the farm living and wish to move to California to be with the wife's family, who are successful and wealthy. The middle and youngest child, love the farm and can't begin to imagine ever leaving their father's childhood home and his dream of making the farm successful again.

Aldine finds herself thrust into the middle of all this drama.  She is met with cautious kindness that turns into disdain by some of the family and deep love by others.  It is the story of love, sacrifice and humanness.  

There is a lot of food in this novel.  Mrs. Price is a wonderful cook, even in rural Kansas where food is scarce and much of the time is spent daydreaming about the foods they used to eat and enjoy.  The family does end up moving to California where Mrs. Price opens a restaurant.

I didn't make any of Mrs. Price's wonderful dishes.  I was touched by the longing that Aldine had for a taste of home, specifically lemon shred.

I had to look up lemon shred to find that it is a lemon marmalade popular in the UK and founded in 1864 by James Robertson.  I found this recipe for Lemon Shred at Canadian Living website.

Foodies Read is a great group ran by Heather of Based on a True Story.  The members love to cook and love to read.  Nearly every book you read can inspire some kind of dish. When it does, we create and share that recipe on the monthly linkup.  You will find a lot of great books even if you don't want to cook and lots of great recipes even if you don't want to read.  If, like us, you love doing both then please don't hesitate to join us.
This marmalade is easy to make, looks gorgeous and tastes amazing. I zested my lemons rather than peeling and thinly slicing the rind.  This was a mistake as mine looks more like jelly and doesn't have the shreds for which this dish is named.  I will rectify this when I make the next batch and there will be a next batch. I will make it and get a headstart  on my handcrafted gifts for the upcoming holiday season.

Scrub your lemons and cut off both ends.  Thinly peel the rind, leaving the white pith, and cut into thin slices.  This is where I messed up by using a zester.  All of my rind just disintegrated into the jelly. Juice the lemons, reserving all pieces including the seeds. 

Wrap the squeezed lemon and seeds in a double thickness of cheesecloth and tie shut with kitchen twine.  Place the lemon juice and rind into a large dutch oven along with the cheesecloth and bring to a simmer.  Cook, occasionally stirring and pressing on the cheesecloth, until the rinds are mushy, about one hour.  This releases pectin into the liquid.

Remove the bag and allow to cool.  Once cool squeeze any liquid from the bag into the dutch oven. You should have 4 cups of liquid.  If too little add water to make 4 cups in too much boil until reduced to 4 cups.

Add 4 cups of sugar to the liquid in the dutch oven.  Cook and stir over high heat until sugar is dissolved and the mixture is boiling. Continue to cook and stir until mixture thickens, about 10 minutes. Pour into sterilized jars, seal and process for 10 minutes using the water bath method.  

Lemon Shred 
adapted from Canadian Living

5 large lemons
4 c. sugar
5 cups water

Scrub lemons and trim off the stem and blossom ends.  Peel off the rind, leaving the white pith.  Cut rind into thin strips and set aside.

Juice the lemons over a strainer into a large pot or dutch oven, retaining the seed and the squeezed lemons.

Add the reserved rind to the pan with the juices.  Place the squeezed lemons and seeds onto a 15" square of double thickness cheesecloth.  Gather together the ends in the middle and tie it shut.  Add to the juice in the pan along with 4 cups of water.  

Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring and pressing on the lemons occasionally, for about 1 hour.  The lemons and rinds will soften and be mushy.  Remove the bag and let cool, then squeeze juice from the bag back into the pan.

You should have 4 cups of juice, add water or boil to reduce as necessary.  Add sugar to the mixture and bring to a rolling boil.  Cook and stir for about 10 minutes, until free of foam and thickened. Pour into sterilized jars, seal and process in a water bath for 10 minutes. Print Recipe

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

My Birthday Gift to Me......

Today is my birthday.  My final year in my 50's heading toward the big 60 now. I often say that my 40's were my best decade but the 50's have been pretty good to me too.

I received this gorgeous cake made from flowers from my sister in law, Rebecca, it fits in perfectly with my theme for this post.  This is a cake that I can truly enjoy!!  Isn't it beautiful?

For my 50th birthday, I decided to start running and be ready for a 5K by the time my 50th rolled around.  I started a couch to 5K program and on the 4th of July, over a month before my birthday, I ran my first 5K.  During my 50th year I ran a 5k every month.  By the time my 51st birthday rolled around, I was in pretty good shape.  I continued running but mixed in other exercise with it, Zumba, Kickboxing, Yoga.

Eventually, I slowed down.  A little more each year until it was just a trickle.  The pounds started coming on......and not at a trickle either.....So here I am approaching my 60th year and heavier than I have ever been in my life.

Oh, sure, there have been spurts of exercise and clean eating over the past few years but nothing that lasted.  I would lose 15 or 20 lbs and then find excuses to not workout and they would creep back on along with the breads, cakes, cookies, pizzas, wine, beer and cocktails.

We got home from a wonderful Alaskan Cruise that we enjoyed the first week of the month.  We had so much fun and I am so happy that we had the opportunity.  You can see a video of our trip right here.

We ate and drank like there was no tomorrow.  Then we got home and guess what?  Tomorrow arrived.

We continued our celebration over the weekend and then on Monday morning I buckled down and began the Fast Metabolism Diet in earnest.  I started walking and doing a beginners total body workout that I found on Youtube.  I am so out of shape that after the first workout, I could barely move for a day and a half.

But I stuck to it.  Day 9 was yesterday and found me 7 lbs lighter than when I first started.  My goal is to be in the same shape on my 60th birthday as I was on my 50th.  No, I won't be running but I will be more active and more cognizant of my food intake.

You can learn more about the FMD eating plan at this post that I wrote when I did the program last year.  We have our Little Angel Face each Tuesday and Wednesday.  Spaghetti is her favorite food in the whole world so we normally have spaghetti every Tuesday evening.

Last week they enjoyed spaghetti and I ate leftover chicken stir fry but this week I decided to make a Slow Cooker Meat Sauce that is found in the FMD Cookbook so that I could enjoy pasta with them.

I adapted the recipe to work with what I had on hand but not in any way that disrupted the integrity of the dish.  I browned my meat before putting it in the crockpot, but it was still a very easy recipe.

You just put everything into a slow cooker and walk away for 8 hrs.  When you are ready for dinner, simply boil your pasta and enjoy.

It was very delicious but more of a hamburger soup with noodles than a sauce.  In fact, the leftovers went into the freezer and I think I will add some brown rice to it for a meal during Phase 1 next week.

Tonight, we are going out for dinner.  We are now in Phase 2 which is protein and vegetable heavy. We are going to my favorite steakhouse, Louis', where I intend to enjoy a filet mignon, salad and vegetables.  See you tomorrow.

Slow Cooker Meat Sauce
adapted from The FMD Cookbook

2 lbs. lean ground beef
1 zucchini, diced
1 summer squash, diced
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 (10 oz) pkg grape tomatoes
5 mini sweet pepper, cored and chopped
1 (8 oz) pkg. baby bella mushrooms, sliced
1 onion, chopped
2 c. vegetable broth
1/2 c. tomato paste
3 cloves garlic, minced
sea salt and pepper, to taste
Brown Rice Pasta, prepared per package directions

Season the ground beef with salt and pepper and brown in a large skillet over med high heat.  Place into a crock pot along with the zucchini, squash, tomatoes, peppers, mushrooms, onion, broth, tomato paste and garlic.  Season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Stir to combine and cook on low setting for 8 hrs. Serve over Brown Rice Pasta.

One serving= 1 cup pasta and 1 cup sauce.  Print Recipe

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Corn Casserole ala Second Hand Lions #FoodnFlix

I was so excited when Courtney of Fictional Fare chose Second Hand Lions as this months FoodnFlix movie.  You are welcome to join in the fun.  Courtney tells you how in her announcement post.

Food 'n Flix
This movie has been a family favorite since it first came out in 2003.  Not many people have heard of it, unless you are our friend, then you have heard of it and have watched it.  Probably more than once. We watch it at least twice a year.  It is funny, touching, heart wrenching, exciting and has a great moral to the story.

It never really made a splash on the big screen.  I don't know why.  I hadn't heard of the movie until my TC family brought it down on one of their visits shortly after it came out on dvd and Frank and I were immediately hooked.  We went out and bought our own copy that we have passed out to all of our friends.  We always make sure we get it back though because we know we are going to want to watch it again.

Image result for second hand lions

It is the story of Walter, a young boy that is unceremoniously dropped on the doorstep of his eccentric great uncles by his sorry excuse of a mother.

The uncles have had quite a colorful past and Walter learns how to wheedle the stories of their adventures out of them.  The uncles are believed to have a hidden treasure of millions of dollars which leads to numerous people coming to their property in the hopes of getting a piece of the prize.

The uncles, played by Michael Caine and Robert Duvall, handle these interlopers by sitting on their porch with shotguns taking pot shots at any and all salesmen that dare to enter.  One salesman is more persistent than the others and Walter convinces his uncles to take a look at what he has to sell.

This leads to many fun and exciting purchases including seeds to start a vegetable garden that turn out to be all the same, giving them a huge crop of corn.  They also order up a "dangerous lion" with the intent of getting some hunting in, however the lion turns out to be a pussy cat who considers the corn field his jungle.

Image result for second hand lions

There is not a lot of food in this movie but there is some.  There are breakfasts eaten and a great scene at a bbq restaurant where the uncles are confronted by a bunch of punks who quickly realize they picked on the wrong "old" guys.

I had to go with corn though.  Those poor guys were eating corn until it came out of their ears.  I have mentioned before about Frank's love affair with sweet corn.  If it were up to him that would be the only vegetable served in this household.  Luckily, it is not up to him but I do try to appease him with corn at least once a week during the winter and several times a week when sweet corn stands are overflowing.

You would think I would run out of corn recipes and I haven't even shared all of the recipes using cornmeal.  Well, I haven't run out yet and I don't know that I ever will. 

The recipe I decided to share with you today, in honor of Second Hand Lions, is a casserole that our sister in law, Rebecca, serves us when we go to her home for get-togethers and often brings to pot lucks.

I asked her to share her recipe and she laughed a little and sent it to me.  It is amazingly simple and uses canned corn so it can be served year round.

Simply mix together a box of corn muffin mix, 2 cans of corn, some sour cream, an egg and some butter and turn it into a casserole that has been treated with cooking spray.

Let it bake up for an hour, uncovered for the last half of the baking time, until golden brown and a skewer inserted removes cleanly.

It is almost like a corn pudding.  The boxed mix along with the corn adds a little sweetness to it.  I thought about using fresh corn for this and I'm sure that you could.  I also thought about making my own corn muffin mix.  Then I knocked myself upside my head.  Everyone that is served this version, made by Rebecca, loves it.  Why mess with success?!

Our friend, Amy of Amy's Cooking Adventures, and her family shared dinner with us the evening I served this dish. It all got gobbled up and I watched people going back for seconds.  I am glad that I listened to my sensible side and left well enough alone.

Corn Casserole
courtesy of Rebecca Klik

1 box corn muffin mix
1 (15 oz) can creamed corn
1 (15 oz) can golden corn
1 stick butter, melted
1 (8 oz) carton sour cream 
1 egg

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.  Pour into a casserole that has been treated with cooking spray.  Cover and bake in a preheated 350* oven for 30 minutes.  Uncover and bake for an additional 30 minutes or until golden brown and a skewer inserted removes cleanly.  Print Recipe