2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 garlic cloves, FINELY minced
1 tablespoon chopped FRESH thyme leaves
1 tablespoon chopped FRESH oregano**
1 tablespoon chopped FRESH Italian flat leaf parsley**
1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
1/4 cup WONDRA flour
1 small shallot, FINELY chopped
2 cups grape or small cherry tomatoes, halved
4 chicken breasts

  • Mix together the softened butter, thyme and parika in a small bowl.
  • Season to taste with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Melt 1 tablespoon of your herb butter in a heavy skillet over medium heat.
  • Season chicken breasts with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Dredge chicken breasts with Wondra flour and then add to the sizzling butter. Sear breast on each side for 3-4 minutes until cooked through.
  • Transfer chicken to plate, tent with foil and keep warm while you prepare the sauce.
  • Increase heat slightly.
  • Add shallots and tomatoes to pan, stirring occasionally, until they begin to char, about 5 minutes.
  • Mash tomatoes slightly to release their juice.
  • Add remaining butter, stirring to blend.
  • Season to taste.
  • Plate chicken and spoon sauce over.

**NOTE: I like to buy the “Pasta Mix” in the produce section. It is a combination of oregano, basil, thyme and Italian parsley.


Hubby wanted swordfish last week, but finding it proved to more difficult and truly impossible in this area so we settled for a Rockfish. I wasn’t even sure what Rockfish was but after an in depth online search I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it is related to my all time favorite, Red Snapper.

There used to be a mom and pop seafood house near where we lived. They made an amazing Blackened, Cajun like Red Snapper before Cajun or Blackened was even a popular thing, at least on the west coast.

I also wanted a sauce so made one based on Julia Child’s French butter sauce.


2 Rockfish or Red Snapper fillets
2 tablespoons Pampered Chef Chile Lime seasoning
2 tablespoons lemon garlic seasoning
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon avocado oil
1 tablespoon butter

  • Rinse fish and pat dry.
  • Whisk together the seasonings.
  • Gently rub fish fillets with the seasoning rub.
  • Heat avocado oil and butter in a skillet over medium heat.
  • Sear fillets 3-4 minutes on each side until fish begins to flake.
  • Plate fish and keep warm while you prepare the sauce.

Pan drippings
1 tablespoon WONDRA flour
1 tablespoon FRESH chopped thyme leaves
1 green onion, minced
Juice of 1 LARGE lemon
4 tablespoons COLD butter, diced into small pieces

  • Over medium high heat heat pan drippings and 1 tablespoon of the butter until melted.
  • Add onions and saute 1 minute.
  • Whisk in flour until combined.
  • Whisk in lemon juice and thyme leaves until smooth.
  • Whisk in butter, one piece at a time until all melted and smooth consistency.
  • Serve immediately over fish fillets.



1 whole tri-tip, about 2-3 pounds
3 + tablespoons of your favorite beef rub
6 + tablespoons dark brown sugar

  • Trim silver skin from roast.
  • The meat may have a thick layer of fat, some of which can be sliced off, but keep a
  • good amount to help baste meat and keep it juicy.
  • Sprinkle meat with your rub and massage lightly all over.
  • Pack the brown sugar over the rub, pressing to adhere.
  • Cover and refrigerate at least an hour or as long as overnight.


  • Remove from refrigerator an hour before cooking.
  • Prepare grill to high.
  • Place roast on grill and sear one side well, 6 to 8 minutes, checking for flare-ups.
  • Turn the roast and sear other side another 6 minutes.
  • Lower to medium-high or move the meat to a cooler part of the charcoal grill.
  • Turn meat again and cook another 8 to 10 minutes.
  • Flip and cook another 6-8 minutes.
  • The roast is ready when an instant-read thermometer reaches 130° when inserted into the thickest part of the meat.
  • Cover roast with foil and rest on a cutting board 10 to 20 minutes.
  • Slice against the grain.


  • A 2-pound roast will require about 20 to 25 minutes total cooking time.
  • The trick is to carve the tri-tip against the grain, which can change directions in this cut. The roast is shaped like a boomerang. Slice the roast in two at the place where the fibers change direction. Carve each piece separately.
  • Left overs make AMAZING sandwiches.


  • Prepare meat with rub and refrigerate as instructed.
  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Add 2 tablespoons of avocado oil to a large, heavy ovenproof pan.
  • Heat pan on high until pan is very hot, then add tri-tip, fat side down.
  • Turn heat to medium-high and sear roast for about 4 minutes.
  • Turn the roast and put the pan in the oven.
  • Cook 10 minutes a pound, checking with an instant-read thermometer until it reaches 130 for medium-rare.


3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup QUALITY honey
1/2 cup champagne vinegar
3/4 cup avocado oil
1 tablespoon grated onion
2 teaspoons poppy seeds
1 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard (optional)

  • Combine sugar , salt and vinegar in a sauce pan, heating over LOW heat until sugar dissolves.
  • Remove from heat and whisk in honey.
  • Pour into a quart jar.
  • Add avocado oil, onions, poppy seeds and mustard if using.
  • Shake WELL to mix.
  • Refrigerate until needed.
  • Shake before serving.

NOTE: This is a perfect dressing to serve over FRESH fruits like watermelon, peaches and avocados.


This is the perfect recipe to enjoy with a nice cold beer.

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast steaks
1 1/2-2 cups salted pretzels, any shape
1 tablespoon FRESH thyme leaves, chopped
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 LARGE eggs
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons avocado oil

  • Place the pretzels in a food processor and grind until fine.
  • Heat a large stainless steel skillet with butter and vegetable oil over medium high heat.
  • Transfer the ground pretzels to a shallow dish, add the thyme, salt and pepper.
  • Beat 2 eggs in a second shallow dish with a splash of water.
  • One at a time, coat each chicken breast in the egg and then the ground pretzels.
  • Add the pretzel-coated chicken breast to the skillet, cooking in a single layer, about 3 or 4 minutes on each side, until the juices run clear and breading is evenly browned.

FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups milk
2 1/2 cups, sharp yellow cheddar cheese, shredded (see notes)
2 heaping tablespoons mayonnaise
FRESH chopped Parsley leaves
1/4 small Vidalia onion, finely chopped

  • While the chicken is frying, in a medium sauce pan over medium heat, melt the butter and add the flour to it.
  • Cook flour and butter for 1 minute and then whisk in the milk.
  • When the milk comes to a bubble, stir in the cheese and mayonnaise until smooth.
  • Season with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Remove from the heat.
  • Plate chicken and drizzle with the cheese sauce.
  • Sprinkle with parsley and finely chopped onion if desired.


  • Changing the cheese can change the flavor profile A LOT!

Originally posted June 29, 2011 without a picture so I updated it 😀


There is a sentimental backstory to this recipe. When I was in college I was a server in a steakhouse that had these skewers on the menu. This was a highly coveted dish by ALL the staff on busy nights because you could seriously eat a bite on your way through. I can’t even count how many of these plates we all shared eating a bite here and there.

At the restaurant we used a pre-prepared sauce from the distributor, but I’ve been working to develop a scratch recipe that I was happy with. I can report that I’ve done it.

Yakitori literally means ‘grilled bird’ in Japanese and is prepared on charcoal grills on skewers as they were designed for portability as a “street food”. Charcoal is the preferred method of cooking as it produces high heat and strong flames while giving off little to no water vapor.

After grilling the skewers are usually dressed in a “tare” sauce which is a dipping sauce best described as a sweet thickened soy based sauce, but there are MANY different variations. Many cooks will season the skewers while they are grilling in addition to a dipping sauce.

One of the keys to success with this dish is uniformly sized pieces of everything on the skewer.


1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 LARGE bunch green onions or 1 Vidalia onion cut into wedges
1 pineapple cut into 1 inch cubes
avocado oil
10 to 12 (5-inch) bamboo skewers

  • Soak skewers in water for 30 minutes.
  • Cut the white and light green part of scallions into 1 inch pieces.
  • Cut chicken into 1-inch cubes.
  • Alternate each chicken slice with a piece of pineapple and a scallion lined up perpendicular to the skewer.

½ cup Bragg’s liquid aminos
½ cup mirin
¼ cup sake
¼ cup water
2 tablespoons PACKED brown sugar
1 teaspoon FRESH grated ginger
2 green onions, green tops minced

  • In a small saucepan whisk together the mirin, liquid aminos, sake, water, brown sugar, grated ginger and green parts of scallion, and bring it to a boil over high heat.
  • Reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until the sauce is reduced by at least half. It will take about 30 minutes.
  • Let it cool to room temperature before using. The sauce will thicken with a glossy shine as it cools. Reserve ⅓ of the sauce in a small bowl for final coating after the chicken is  cooked.

Note: You can make the sauce ahead of time omitting the green onion part. Store in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 months.


  • Heat grill to medium high.
  • Grease the grate of the grill to avoid the chicken sticking on the grate.
  • Place the skewers on top.
Sear for 4 minutes.
  • Turn skewers and sear the other side for 4 minutes.
  • Brush with sauce and grill 2 more minutes.
  • Flip and brush the other side and grill 2 more minutes.
  • Repeat the flipping and brushing until chicken is cooked through.
Transfer the skewers to a serving plate.
  • Brush the chicken again with the reserved sauce.


I’m still featuring my Mary & Martha GRACE meal prayer box on Faith and Food Friday, hosted by Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom.

THIS WEEK’S PRAYER: Thank You Lord, for good things to eat, for refreshing things to drink, for the love and laughter we share, for the blessings. You pour on us each day. We love You! Amen.

2 LARGE boneless chicken breasts
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup Wondra
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
2 LARGE eggs
1/2 cup Panko crumbs
2-4 tablespoons butter (enough to keep chicken from burning~add as necessary)

  • Rinse and pat dry the chicken breasts.
  • In a shallow glass pan, pour buttermilk over chicken 1-2 hours prior to cooking.
  • Make sure to coat chicken well and turn at least once during soaking.
  • Drain, but do NOT rinse the buttermilk off.
  • In a medium sized fry pan melt the butter over medium heat. As butter melts and begins to very slightly sizzle, prepare breasts.
  • In a shallow pan mix together the flour, salt and pepper.
  • In another shallow pan whisk eggs until well blended.
  • In another shallow pan add Panko crumbs.
  • One at a time, dredge each chicken breast in flour mixture, then egg mixture and then Panko crumbs.
  • Add to sizzling butter.
  • Cook 4-6 minutes each side depending on plumpness.
  • Keep chicken warm.

2 pounds russett potatoes
1 SMALL bunch green onions
several sprigs FRESH thyme
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 LARGE eggs, lightly beaten
3-4 slices crumbled bacon pieces

  • Drape a clean cheesecloth over a colander.
  • Grate the potatoes and onion and place inside the lined colander.
  • Sprinkle with salt, toss and let drain in the sink for 20 to 30 minutes.
  • Squeeze as much moisture as possible out of the potato-onion mixture.
  • Combine with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, lemon juice, lemon zest, beaten eggs, bacon pieces and panko and in a medium bowl and mix to form a pasty mixture.
  • Fold the thyme into the mix.
  • Cover with plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Place a 10-inch cast-iron skillet on medium heat and allow to heat for 5 minutes.
  • Also, preheat the oven to 350°.
  • Add 4 tablespoons of the oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan.
  • When oil is hot add potato mixture and gently press with spatula to flatten the mixture so it evenly covers the bottom of the pan.
  • Cook on medium heat for 5 minutes.
  • Transfer to oven and bake for 10 minutes. By this time, the latke should be firm enough to flip without falling apart. Transfer the pan to the stove.
  • Place a plate over the pan and carefully invert to flip the latke.
  • Slide it back into the pan and bake for another 10 minutes.

WHOLE milk ricotta cheese
1 green onion, FINELY minced
Juice of LARGE lime
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

  • Whisk everything together until smooth and chill until needed.

1 LARGE can chopped green chiles
1 bunch green onions, chopped
Handful FRESH Italian Parsley
couple sprigs FRESH thyme
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons WONDRA flour
2 cups homemade chicken bone broth
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste

  • In a food processor combine green chiles, green onions, Parsley and thyme.
  • Pulse until smooth.
  • In a large sauce pan melt butter over medium high heat.
  • When butter is sizzling sprinkle with flour and whisk until golden.
  • Whisk in green chile mixture and bone broth.
  • Bring to a SLOW boil, reduce heat and simmer until reduced and beginning to thicken,
  • Season to taste with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.



4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper
2 tablespoons avocado oil
1 LARGE stalk celery, FINELY diced
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 mini bottle Honey Jack Daniels
1 tablespoon Bragg’s liquid aminos
1 tablespoon Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard (optional)
1/2 cup SMALL chopped toasted pecans
2 tablespoons QUALITY honey
1/2 cup unsalted butter, COLD and diced

  • Whisk together the brown sugar, Jack Daniels, liquid aminos, Worcestershire sauce and Dijon if using. Set aside.
  • Generously season chicken breasts with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Heat avocado oil in large skillet over medium high heat.
  • Sear chicken breasts 4 minutes on each side JUST until cooked through.
  • Remove chicken to platter and keep warm.
  • Add celery and asparagus if using, sauteing 2-3 minutes.
  • Add Jack Daniels mixture to skillet and bring to a simmer.
  • Turn off heat and add cold butter, whisking until smooth.
  • Stir in the honey and pecan pieces.
  • Return chicken to pan, turning to coat in sauce.
  • Plate chicken pieces.
  • Drizzle with sauce and serve immediately.


  • You can find the small little travel size Jack Daniels bottle in the liquor store with various flavors. I’ve tried most of them and find you can’t go wrong 🙂 Apple is great also as is Fireball Cinnamon.
  • I eliminate the mustard due to a life threatening allergy, but I hear it is a wonderful flavor addition.
  • I also like to saute’ some asparagus tips in the sauce for a bit more elegant flair.

Pampered Chef KANSAS CITY RUB Grilled Pork Chops

Pampered Chef KANSAS CITY RUB Grilled Pork Chops
This isn’t as much a recipe as a it is a testament to Pampered Chef’s new Kansas City Rub.

I rubbed these thick pork chops on Friday afternoon and covered them for the refrigerator. I rubbed them again on Saturday and by Sunday they were PERFECT for grilling.

The flavor was absolutely amazing! AND they were so tender you could almost cut them with your fork 😀



4-6 bone-in pork chops
1 cup Italian salad dressing
1/2 cup pear apple sauce
1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup Frank’s original hot sauce
1 LARGE lime juiced
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper

  • Whisk together all ingredients except pork chops in large bowl.
  • Place pork chops flat in large container with a lid (like a Tupperware marinader).
  • GENEROUSLY season with FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Pour marinade over chops and put lid on.
  • Let chops marinate over night (at least 8 hours), inverting ever couple hours if you can.
  • Pre-heat grill to medium and oil grate.
  • Remove chops from marinade.
  • Pour marinade into sauce pan and heat over medium heat to SLOW boil.
  • Let marinade boil for at least one minute then remove from heat
  • Place chops on grill and baste occasionally.
  • Grill for about 5-6 minutes per side until seared, cooked through and no longer pink.


I’m still featuring my Mary & Martha GRACE meal prayer box on Faith and Food Friday, hosted by Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom.


Oh, the Lord is good to me. And so I thank the Lord for giving me the things I need. The sun and the rain and the apple seed. The Lord is good to me. Amen.

ANTIPASTO SALAD adapted from Valerie Bertinelli

2 tablespoons QUALITY red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard  (optional)
1/2 teaspoon Calabrian chile paste, crushed red pepper flakes or sriracha 
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning 
1/2 small shallot, minced 
FRESH ground sea salt and tri-color pepper
3 tablespoons avocado oil 

  • Whisk the vinegar, mustard if using, chile paste, Italian seasoning, shallot and 1/4 teaspoon salt together in a small bowl.
  • Gradually whisk in the avocado oil.
  • Pour into a cruet and shake.

4 radishes, thinly sliced (watermelon OR yellow radishes if you can find them)
2 celery heart ribs, thinly sliced 
1 romaine heart, cut into 1/2-inch-wide strips 
1/2 head iceberg lettuce, cut into 1/2-inch-wide strips 
1/4 pound provolone, cut into 1/4-inch cubes 
1/4 pound mozzarella balls
1/4 pound Genoa salami, cut into 1/4-inch cubes 
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved 
3 tablespoons sliced pickled pepperoncinis
3 tablespoons sliced pickled cherry peppers

  • Combine the radishes, celery, romaine, iceberg, provolone, salami, tomatoes, pepperoncinis and cherry peppers in a large salad bowl.
  • Toss with the vinaigrette and serve immediately.


  • I like to add a generous drizzle of a QUALITY balsamic glaze.
  • I also like to refer to this as a kitchen sink salad because I use up whatever is in my crisper bins and deli drawer 😀


12 ounces Dr. Pepper
1/2 cup Heinz chili sauce
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon vinegar
2 cloves garlic FINELY minced
FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
3-4 pounds of your favorite chicken pieces or wings

  • In a large sauce pan whisk together the Dr. Pepper, chili sauce, vinegar, garlic and sugar over a medium high heat and bring to a SLOW boil.
  • Reduce heat to medium low and simmer 20 minutes or so, stirring often until reduced and thickened. Set aside.


  • Prepare grill to medium direct heat grilling. (I use a non-stick spray).
  • Generously season the chicken with the FRESH ground sea salt and black pepper.
  • Place chicken skin side down over direct heat and sear 5 minutes.
  • Flip chicken skin side up to indirect heat. Close lid and cook 25-30 minutes until chicken is JUST about cooked through. (No blood or pink meat)
  • Generously brush chicken with sauce ever 5 minutes for 15-20 minutes more.