Sunday, July 31, 2011

cocktail hour

Tomorrow we return to work after a peaceful summer. Let the games begin with a Sunday afternoon cocktail invented by Spillmanville. This potent potable is sure to melt your last days of summer away.

Jezebel (title inspired by listening to some smooth Sade)
2 shots premium vodka, chilled
4 oz. LaCroix water, lemon flavored, chilled
1 tbsp lemon juice
garnish: a few blueberries, a strawberry slice and a couple of mint leaves


Wednesday, July 27, 2011

No Bake Cookies (doo-doo cookies)

Simply stated, I love cookies. I love making them and I love eating them. When I was a kid my mom made me cookies for my birthday. She would put them in a Toll House tin, and wrap them up just for me. I never shared.
One of my all time favorite cookies is quite possibly the easiest cookie to make. There are all kinds of ways to play with this one, but I am going to take the recipe straight out of Aunt Bee's recipe box.

No Bake Cookies are just that. They are not baked. The most cooking you will do is boiling and mixing. 
1/2 cup butter (don't use fake butter, never as good)
4 tablespoons cocoa
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup peanut butter (I prefer crunchy)
3 cups quick oats
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of salt.
In a saucepan combine butter, cocoa, sugar, and milk. Bring the mixture to a boil. Boil for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and add the remaining ingredients. Drop the mixture from a spoon onto waxed paper. (the wax paper is important) Set aside and let cool. They will harden a bit as they cool down. Don't try and cool these in the refrigerator. They just get all greasy. 
Makes about 3 dozen.
Spillmanville Eats likes the sugars..


Have you ever tried Quinoa? It is a grain and is very good for you and easy to prepare. Pick some up at your local grocery store. It comes pre-packaged in a box (or bag) and can sometimes can be found in the self-scoop bulk aisle. Quinoa can be served warm or cold. We like the cold "salad" version in the summer and in winter we serve it warm with parmesan cheese.

Summer Quinoa Salad
1. Prepare quinoa according to box directions (1 cup dry quinoa, 2 cups water). Bring to boil, cover, simmer on low 10-15 minutes or until all water is absorbed.
2. Put cooked quinoa in a large mixing bowl and allow to cool. Fluff occasionally with a fork to speed up cooling.
3. Add chopped vegetables, about 1/4 cup of each (cucumber, green onion, tomato, carrot- whatever veggies you like!)
4. Season with a little kosher salt, fresh black pepper, a splash of olive oil and a few tablespoons of something with acidity (rice wine vinegar or lemon juice works well). Chill before serving.

Friday, July 15, 2011

low carb pizza!

Bobby has the body type that can eat anything and never gain weight. Mel does not (think apple-shaped "Kermit the Frog" body). We both love pizza, but Mel simply cannot eat many carbs or her pants will be too tight within a day, literally.

Here is a lo-carb pizza that is so easy to make and tastes great. It is a quick dish and you don't have to waste time making sauce. The canned tomato paste seasons itself while cooking. We used feta and parmesan, but you could use any cheese you have on hand. Feel free to add your favorite additional toppings and have fun with this versatile recipe.

Lo-Carb Pizza (makes 1 pizza)
1 lo-carb wheat tortilla
1 tbsp grated parmesan
1 tbsp crumbled feta
1 tsp capers, rinsed
1/2 small can tomato paste
sprinkle of garlic powder
sprinkle of dried Italian herbs
fresh cracked black pepper
handful of chopped fresh basil
1 tsp. olive oil

Heat oven to 400 and put tortilla on cookie sheet, drizzle tortilla with olive oil. Smear tomato paste over tortilla then sprinkle with garlic powder and Italian herbs. Add cheese, capers and black pepper. Bake about 10-12 minutes or until crisp and cheese is melted. Top with fresh basil before serving.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

mozzarella salad

This is such an easy recipe it literally takes minutes to assemble. We did not use salt and never missed the sodium. It gets really hot in Memphis and the last thing we need is to be swollen from too much salt. Back to the recipe, this is so easy a kid could make it. Sorry we don't have a photo, this dish vanishes quickly.

Mozzarella Salad
10-12 small "balls" of fresh mozarella cheese, drained
12-15 cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
one medium cucumber, peeled if waxy and seeded if it has large seeds (we used a homegrown and did not need to peel or remove seeds)
1/2 medium vidalia onion, sliced thinly
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp chopped basil
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 tsp chopped garlic
1 tsp lemon juice
zest from 1/2 lemon
cracked black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and toss gently. Serve immediately and watch it disappear. Serves 4 appetizer portions.