Saturday, July 30, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Rachael/Rita's Pan-Fried Pork with Blueberries Recipe...

Once again, I think Rachael and I have rocked our family's taste buds with another amazing recipe! This one is from the June/July 2008 magazine and is totally summer delicious! I even thought that with a few alterations the blueberry "gravy" could be a wonderful syrup for pancakes. I also want to use the breading for the pork chops and chicken without the sauce sometime. I didn't use as much oil so that the pork chops wouldn't be greasy. I also served boiled squash with onion and green beans with this supper as well. So here is the recipe...

Ingredients:
2 pounds boneless pork lion, cut crosswise into eights (I got 8 boneless pre-cut pork chops family packs)
1/2 cup red wine
salt and pepper
1/4 cup flour
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 3/4 cups chicken broth
1 cup blueberries
1 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon parsley, finely chopped
1 teaspoon cilantro, finely chopped

Instructions:
1. Place the pork chops in a large zip lock bag with the red wine and let marinate for 3 hours in the refrigerator.
2. In a medium bowl, season the pork with the salt and pepper. Add the flour and toss to coat. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Shaking off any excess flour, add the pork to the skillet and cook, turning once, until browned, about 5 minutes total. Transfer to a platter. (I placed the flour, salt, pepper, parsley, cilantro all in a medium size bowl. Then took each pork chop out o the zip lock bag and placed them one at a time into the flour mixture to cover it completely and then placed it in the hot skillet - then follow the cooking process in step 2.).
3.  Add the onion to the skillet and cook, stirring, over medium-high heat for 1 minute. Add the chicken broth and blueberries, bring to a boil and cook until reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Stir in the butter and season with salt and pepper. Turn off the heat and return the pork and any juices to the skillet. Divide the pork among 4 plates and spoon the sauce on top.  (I added the marinate and the remaining flour mixture which was about 2 tablespoons to the skillet too...)

This meal was really delicious!!! We grow our own blueberries so it was a great way to use the extras...ummmmmyyyy Now depending on the heat index tomorrow, I am planning to make banana bread and blueberry bread tomorrow...we shall see...=)

Love, Blessings, & {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com
Friday, July 29, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Not so much Rachael/but more Rita's Steak Sandwich Supper Recipe...

We have been cooking our way through a couple of Rachael Ray's summer 2008 magazines this week, but yesterday, instead of making her "Steakhouse Salad" was inspired to only use her salad dressing recipe, well, sort of and I made a steak sandwich instead of the salad. So here is what I did with her inspirational recipe...

Ingredients for the sandwich:
6 kaiser rolls, cut in half
6 boneless strip steaks cut 1 1/2 inches thick
1 cup of red wine
1 tablespoon cilantro, chopped finely
1 tablespoon minced garlic
salt and pepper
fresh spinach
1/4 cup of feta, crumbled
1/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons red wine (I used the marinate from the steaks, see instructions)

Instructions for the sandwiches:
1. Place the steaks on a wood cutting board and beat them with a meat hammer to tenderize. Then place them in a large ziplock bag. Add the red wine, cilantro, garlic, salt and pepper. Marinate in the refrigerator for 3 hours or overnight.
2. In a salad dressing bottle or a bowl, mix the feta, buttermilk, mayonnaise and red wine together well and place in the refrigerator to chill. It will be ready for the spinach/strawberry salad later and you can add some to the sandwich too...umy!!
3. After the steaks have marinated, take them from the ziplock bag and lay them on paper towels but don't press them dry. Then grill them for 3 minutes on each side.
4. For the sandwiches, layer the steak, spinach leaves and dressing on the rolls.

For the spinach and strawberry salad, all you need is fresh spinach leaves and thinly sliced strawberries tossed with the buttermilk feta dressing. It is delicious even the next day. Add a potato salad and you have a wonderful meal...We call this a double salad wham home run supper, usually served with polish sausage hot dogs but...steak sandwiches are just as good! =)

Enjoy....Love, Blessings & {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com
Wednesday, July 27, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Rachael/Rita's Beefy Tex-Mex Stir-Fry/Taco Salad

This week, we are cooking Rachael Ray recipes at our house, revisiting some magazines from her summer 2008 collection. This recipe, "Beefy Tex-Mex Stir-Fry", came from the insert for Thursday in the August 2008 issue. I added my own twist to it plus some extra seasonings, creating more of a taco salad, and I thought it whipped up very nicely. Also, I have some big guys at my house that needed a little more added to the meal, so I popped sweet potatoes in the oven this morning and baked them all day, umy, and some turnip greens on to simmer while I made this delicious dish...It is filling and very good...so here's what's for supper tonight...(btw, that's is Garrett's plate...he had to take the picture lol...he is an artist of creating the perfect plate.)...

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (I omitted; used cooking spray instead)
1 poblano chile, seeded and finely chopped (I omitted, our family doesn't eat spicy)
1 onion, chopped (I keep 2 large onions chopped in the fridge/prepped for times like this)
1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder (I also added 1 teaspoon each cilantro, parsley; 1 tablespoon garlic)
1 pound ground beef (I used 2 lbs lean ground beef)
1 tomato, finely chopped (I used 3 Roma tomatoes)
2 cups crushed tortilla chips (I used a large bag, 32 oz I think lol)
salt and pepper
2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend

Instructions:
1. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the poblano, onion and chili powder and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 4 minutes. Add the beef and cook, breaking up the meat until the meat is just cooked through, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomato and tortilla chips and season with salt and pepper. (I did this differently...In a large skillet sprayed with cooking spray, saute the onions until tender. Add the meat and cook through. Drain the meat and rinse thoroughly with hot water, getting rid of the grease. Then return to the skillet, add the chili powder, cilantro, salt, pepper, tomatoes, 1 cup of the chips, and cook for 2 minutes. Pour mixture into a baking dish, top with cheese and top cheese with chips.)
2. Divide the meat mixture among 4 plates and top with the cheese. (I added the mixture to the plates and topped with fat-free sour cream. Umy!!!

I love these recipes and especially making them a little more healthy. I use olive oil rather than any other oil and butter instead of margarine...I love the flavor and hope that all I have read is true that they are better for my family. I LOVE to cook and someday think I will cook live on my ustream channel, once the kitchen is rebuilt...umy...maybe even cook for you!!! =) Wouldn't that be rockin' awesome!!!!

Love, Blessings, & {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com
Tuesday, July 26, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Rachael/Rita's Cheesy Grilled Eggplant Sandwiches Recipe...

First, lol, I won't apologize for using paper plates! It is over 100 degrees in Alabama and OMGosh nobody wants to worry about dishes especially if you are cooking or grilling! =) This week, we are cooking Rachael Ray, revisiting some of the recipes in my summer 2008 magazines and this one is just as the others, fabulous!! It is the Cheesy Grilled Eggplant Sandwiches and Jerry and I added our own twist to them plus put a lettuce wedge on the side to complete this meal. There was plenty for the guys to take them for lunch on Monday as well...This is from the August 2008 Rachael Ray magazine insert for Wednesday. I love eggplant and because of recipes like this, my family loves vegetables as well! A great meal, so let's get started...

Ingredients:
1 pound eggplant, trimmed and thinly sliced, lengthwise (I peeled, sliced instead, placed in salted ice water until they were ready to be used to keep them from turning dark)
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
10 ounces or 2 1/2 cups jarisberg cheese, shredded (I used swiss cheese since I couldn't get this cheese)
One 4-ounce package thinly sliced prosciutto (I used honey backed deli ham since I couldn't get prosciutto)

Instructions:
1. Preheat a grill to medium. In a large bowl, toss the eggplant slices with 2 tablespoons olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Grill, turning once, until softened, about 4 minutes. (I use a large ziplock for this, saves mess and cleanup.)
2. Lay the bread on a work surface. Top 4 slices with a layer each of cheese, proscuitto, eggplant and another layer or proscuitto and cheese. Top with the remaining bread slices. (Ok, I did this totally differently because we are cheese lovers and I wanted cheese touching every element of the sandwich...so this is how I did it...slice of bread, cheese, ham slice, cheese, eggplant slice, cheese, ham slice, cheese, bread slice. It wasn't messy or too cheesy, besides, is there a such thing? lol)
3. Brush the outside of the sandwiches with the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Grill, covered, turning once, until crisp, about 2 minutes.
4. Then we added lettuce wedges with ranch dressing and tomato slices...umy!!!

Enjoy...Love, Blessings & {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com
Monday, July 25, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

I have discovered a new purpose in crocheting...

Can you say, "WOW"?! Yes, You Can!!
Even the fiber loves it because it is "Espresso"...=)

 I really enjoy crocheting and it is odd that during 100 degree temps of the summer that I would pick up fibers and decided to make something much less get inspired to REALLY create several items from a single book! Well, that is just what happened. I was in the book store one day, flipping through magazines and crochet just inspired me that day. After not finding anything I wanted to make in the magazines, I went to the craft section. I gathered all the books they had on crochet, which stacked pretty high, walked by customer service and informed them that if someone was looking for that particular subject, then just send them to the cafe. =)...

It was then that I found authors Janet Bristow and Victoria A. Cole-Galo's book "The Crocheted Prayer Shawl Companion". The colors and stitches within the books just spoke to me but not in the theme of the book, I just wanted to make the shawls to learn the stitches. So, I had Caron's One Pound Espresso Fiber that I wanted to use and the first pattern was Rita Glod's "Original Crocheted Prayer Shawl" and was perfect to begin with.

When I began working on the pattern, several saw me and asked about the project. Someone in my family said to me one day, "We know someone that is going through a really serious crisis right now and she might could use this if you would like to give it to her." I immediately brightened and was thrilled with the idea! I knew exactly who I would ask to bless this shawl for our friend, the WINGS ladies group at our church! They are prayer warriors!! Perfect...God was working in this I could feel it...He was bringing the positive thoughts and prayers together and happiness was filling my being and my fingers as the stitches flowed...I now had a new purpose in crocheting...

Now, since making this one, I have progressed halfway through my second prayer shawl and the positive thoughts have flowed to whom it will go to and I pulled fibers for two more shawls and the patterns I thought of from the book when I saw these colors are the perfect match in weight for the fibers. Can you tell I am excited!!! The sentences are running on and on lol...

I have many creative interests and mediums. I can encourage others through them as well. So, I pray God will use them as well. So, please say a prayer for the person getting this Espresso Prayer Shaw that she will have courage, strength and feel hugged in prayers with this prayer shawl.

Love, Blessings, & {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com

Saturday, July 23, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Rachael/Rita's Open-Faced Grilled Greek Burgers Recipe (Rachael Ray & I did Good!!)

Rachael Ray's Greek Burgers with Rita's Oven-Fried Potatoes & Jerry's Spinach Salad
...that's what's for supper...
& no, it wasn't at all greasy!!! 

Open-Faced Grilled Burgers Recipe
(from Rachael Ray's August 2008 Magazine Menu Insert)
Ingredients:
1 1/2 pounds ground lamb (I used 2 lbs lean ground beef = 1/2 burgers!!!!!)
1 cup (or 5 ounces) crumbled feta cheese
1 teaspoon dried oregano (I used 1/2 teaspoon more to cover the extra lb of meat)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing
One 6-ounce package portobello mushroom caps (I totally missed this on my grocery list, bummer)
1 red onion, cut crosswise into 3/4" thick slices (I used sweet white onion, it was what I had)
Four 1" thick Italian bread slices (I used hamburger buns, I knew my guys would want a BUN lol)
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar (I omitted, but Jerry used for the Spinach salad dressing)
2 tablespoons Italian bread crumbs (umy addition)

Instructions for the burgers:
1. Preheat a grill to medium. In a large bowl, mix together the meat, feta, oregano, salt, pepper, (bread crumbs). Shape meat into four 3/4" thick patties.
2. Brush olive oil all over mushrooms (remember to buy them!!! lol), onion and bread slices (or buns). Season the patties and vegetables with salt and pepper and grill, covered, until the patties are just firm to the touch, about 3-4 minutes on each side. Brill the bread until toasted, 1-2 minutes on each side.
3. Divide the bread among 4 plates and top each with a mushroom cap, a meat patty and some onion slices;p drizzle with the vinegar.

Now, I added oven fried potatoes to this meal...simply cut 3 lbs of russet potatoes, skin and all into cubes and put them into a large zip lock bag. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 chopped sweet onion, 1/4 teaspoon cilantro, salt and pepper and shake the bag. Then poor them onto a cookie sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Bake at 400 degrees until brown. Serve hot. Sprinkle your favorite cheese on top or serve with sour cream.

There is a lot of olive oil requested in these recipes, but I always use oil, butter, and cheeses in moderation. I get the leanest meats possible and get fat free products when possible. I took a year and cooked Rachael Ray recipes...that was before Julia/Julie movie ever came out and before I ever thought of blogging, wow, that could have been Rachael/Rita LOL...We loved every recipe and they really do only take 30 minutes, but we also gained a few pounds too! So, I have learned to make the meals a little differently now and substitute some of the ingredients but the best thing that year taught me, and, well, my family was to eat things we never had and to cook with ingredients we had never tried, like leaks and butternut squash soup - two of my son's favorite foods now! Imagine that...

So, I decided to cook my way down memory lane of 2008...this week we are cooking Rachael Ray recipes from two of her magazines that summer, June/July and August...how fun will those pinup pages be!! LOL...loving it...

Love, Blessings, & {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com

Louise's Zucchini Pancake Recipe

Louise's Zucchini Pancake Recipe

Thursday morning, I woke at 4 am saying that if I was a good wife and mother, one would think I would make pancakes for my family...so not! I was going back to bed!! =) However, I added, that I just might make pancakes for supper that night. Our cousin, Louise Bennett, an amazing personal chef, posted a recipe for zucchini pancakes. OMGosh!! I couldn't post enough after we made them that night how much we absolutely loved them! They were so very good! So here is her recipe and I am encouraging her to blog more of her wonderful recipes!!! She is a true talent...

Ingredients:

4 cups zucchini, shredded
1 small onion, grated
2 eggs
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 1/2 cup flour 
bread crumbs with garlic to taste (optional, but delicious)

Instructions: Cook just as you would any other pancakes, we used a griddle to make our pancakes, sprayed with cooking spray and a tad of butter. Takes about 1 minute on each side. Louise suggested serving with sour cream or pepper jelly, since I had both, we tried both...ummmmmyyyy...oh yes, it was so very good...

Thank you, Louise, for an amazing supper dish recipe...Loved it...


Love, Blessings, and {{{Hugs}}},

Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com


Friday, July 22, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Rita's Razzle Dazzle Zucchini Bread Recipe

Rita's Razzle Dazzle Zucchini Bread Recipe

I took several recipes that I found several years ago and combined them into one of my favorite recipes. There was a lady that lived on Smith Lake that inspired me to come up with something more creative than just your typical zucchini bread recipe, although I do make the average bread when time doesn't allow for me to make this recipe. You will love the flavors this recipe has within it. It really makes your mouth razzle and dazzle as each flavor pops! You can freeze it or eat it immediately! Enjoy because here we go...

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon nutmeg
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon real vanilla (no imitation stuff please)
3 eggs
1 cup of butter, melted (don't use margarine, but you can substitute oil)
1 cup honey
1 cup crushed pineapple
1/4 cup orange juice
2 1/2 cups shredded zucchini (you can use frozen zucchini...let it thaw and then chop it up, it will be mushy but that texture is fine)
3 cups of self-rising flour

Instructions:
1. Preheat oven at 350 degrees.
2. Spray 2 loaf pans with cooking spray and set aside.
3. Place all the ingredients except the butter and the flour in the electric mixer and mix well. 
4. Then add the butter to the mixer and mix well. 
5. Finally add the flour a 1/2 cup at a time until well mixed together. 
6. Pour the batter evenly into each pan.
5. Bake for 1 hour or until knife inserted in center comes our clean.
6. Serve warm.

Totally enjoy...I know we will...

Love, Blessings and {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com

Monday, July 18, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Scrapbooking with the New Center Girlfriends!!

I am working on the Heritage Cookbook...totally fun...

Beverly is working on a project for her "Little Sister"
at college...we can't show you, but it is FABULOUS!!!

Just PART of my stash I carry LOL...

Bobbie working on her Studio J...she does amazing layouts
on the computer using Studio J, then prints them off on 
paper and does her paper layouts...amazing layouts...

Sadly...ARGH...I didn't get good photos
of Sandy and Chelsea!! Both are great
scrapbook artist...I think Chelsea did like
14 or so pages....

More of my stash lol...

We have a great time and meet the 2nd Saturday of the month
at New Center Baptist Church Fellowship Hall
in Hartselle. It is totally free too!!
On this occasion, there was something going on at the church,
so we met at Bobbie's house...wow, she has a lot of stamps
and a great studio space...we were totally jealous lol...
Anyone is welcome to attend...we are not fancy
scrappiers, just love hanging out and having a good time...

Love, Blessings, & {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com

Wednesday, July 13, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Recycled a Purse into a Baby Mini Scrapbook Album!!!

This is one fun project!! When I saw this purse hanging in one of my favorite thrift stores, it just screamed "mini scrapbook album!" So, I saved it for a few months until I couldn't stand it any longer! The tile cover is one piece, hand stitched so I had to be careful not to break the tiles and not to cut the stitching. It worked out perfectly to have three rows of the tile as the spine and leave the remaining tiles as the back and front. The handles were in great shape so I polished them and left them with them as part of the mini album. The purse portion was pretty dirty so I threw it away but kept the zipper head and part of the zipper to use on another project later. I loved the papers which came from two previous projects that I worked on sometime last year and horded them until just the right thing came along and THIS was so it...I loved it!!!! This is so stinkin' cute and adorable!!!

Love, Blessings & {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com
Friday, July 8, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

It's all in a name "Papaw Hutty" scrapbook layout...

 
"papaw hutty" scrapbooking layout
from "The Heritage Cookbook Photo Album" Scrapbook
by Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs


My grandfather Thomas Jefferson Hutcheson was a pretty quiet man. I always made sure I listened if he ever said anything because I knew it was going to be important or at least I hoped it would be. =) He was a farmer but I only remember him having pigs but my dad talked about him having cattle too and raising various types of vegetables and corn. He and my uncle Johnny Holcomb had a small country store that sold gasoline too. I loved that store because living in Decatur, Alabama Monday through Friday and coming to the family farm my parents owned on the weekends was a treat for me. I got to visit the store and get candies and cokes that I couldn't get in the city. Papaw carried Mr. Pib and the soft peppermint sticks in gallon jugs right by the cash register. It was ok to put peanuts in my Mr. Pib, something that my city friends frowned on. I never had to worry when I was on the farm about such or when I was around my cousins.

One time though, I did get into an embarrassing moment but for me, I never knew I was embarrassed lol...I just let such as that roll off my shoulder just like hurt feelings or if someone was making fun of me...I never knew they were if they did it...I walked to my own drummer much like our son Ethan...God made me the way I am and I just walk by faith, happy and "go lucky" as my daddy called it. However, I am off the subject...

I grew up at 1202 6th SW, Decatur on Monday through Friday so that my dad could work at Thompson Caterpillar.  Our neighbors, the Bozeman's had a beauty shop in their home. Mrs. Bozeman was from somewhere near Phil Campbell where the Hutcheson's were from and where Papaw Hutty's store was located, which by the way was right next door to his house. I think she was from Red Bay but that is neither here nor there. One day, I went over just to sit in her shop and listen to the ladies chat, which wasn't unusual for me to do. I often played or hung out with her daughter, Vicky. On this day, Mrs. Bozeman asked me, "Rita, are you related to a Jeff Hutcheson?" I thought about this for a minute and finally replied, "No, I don't think so." I went about the afternoon and finally went home and asked my mother when I thought about it to which she replied rather shocked and appalled, "Why, Rita, that is your grandfather!!" I was stunned...how was I suppose to know, I had never ever heard him called anything other than "Papaw Hutty!" So, image the laughter when I went back over to the shop and told them the findings of my inquiry...lol, rather funny...

I was proud of my grandparents. Papaw Hutty never held my hand that I remember. He never taught me anything new that I remember. He never read me a story that I remember. He never gave me deep words of advice that I remember. He never drove me anywhere that I remember. But one time after I sung at church, he put his hand on my shoulder and said, "You sing just like your mamaw, she would have loved to hear you sing," and he put his fedora hat on and walked out of the church, shaking hands as he went. I just watched him as he went. My dad teared up as we watched him go. I will always remember that moment.

He had a neat truck though...like my grandfather Newell, I wonder what happen to it...wish I had both of those trucks today and my dad's white pick up, wouldn't that rock lol...I need to get photos of all of them...

Love, Blessings, & {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com
Wednesday, July 6, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

My version of Mediterranean Inspired Lentil Stuffed Peppers...

My version is a little different, but yet so yummy...

First I have to give credit to Jay, a 16 yr old ((WOW)) at The Vegan Foodie which has the complete recipe below along with a ton more amazing recipes, reviews that you will absolutely enjoy. So I encourage you to zip over and check out his blog. However, I did make a few changes to the recipe to use what I had on hand. So I made some notations in "(-)" within the recipe that I did, indeed, copy from his blog directly to my blog so that you could make this recipe too...Thanks, Jay, for helping this artist have a great meal ready for tomorrow night...I will make this recipe again...and I will try it in my Crockpot Sisters =)...Hugs...and here we go...Let's cook...

Ingredients
1 cup of lentils {Jay: I used plain old brown lentils, but you can use any lentils you have on hand} (Rita: I used a can of red kidney beans & a can of black beans, rinsed)
4 Bell Peppers (Rita: I used 5 peppers since that is how many I would be feeding for supper)
1 onion, chopped (Rita: chopped finely)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 stalk of celery, cut into small pieces
1 small carrot , cut into small pieces
1 small zucchini, cut into small pieces
2 large tomatoes or 1 14 oz can of tomatoes (Rita: I used 6 Roma tomatoes, chopped finely)
2 cups or more spinach chopped or any other leafy green (Rita: I used a can of mixed greens, drained)
2 tablespoons olive oil (Rita: I used cooking spray and no olive oil at all)
1/4 teaspoon rosemary
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon thyme
1/2 cup vegetable broth (Rita: I did use broth)
half a lemon (Rita: I didn't use lemon)
Salt and Pepper to taste 
For the Lemon Panko Topping 
1/2 cup of panko breadcrumbs
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon thyme
1 tablespoon olive oil (Rita: I didn't use)
1 tablespoon fresh parsley
In a saucepan add the lentils and about 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. When it is boiling bring the heat down to a simmer. Simmer the lentils for 15 minutes, you don’t want them to go mushy so keep an eye on them. They should still retain their shape. After 15 minutes, drain the lentils and set them aside. (Rita: I didn't have to cook the lentils since they were already cooked.)
Meanwhile, cut 4 bell peppers in half, take the seeds out but leave the stem intact. Bring a pot of water to a boil. After the water is up to a boil, drop the peppers in the water and blanch them for 3-5 minutes. Immediately add them to a bowl of ice water. (Rita: I left my pepper whole and cut off the top and cleaned out the inside.)
Preheat oven to 375.
In a food processor, pulse the two tomatoes until they are chunky and their juices release. {Jay: Skip this step if you are using canned tomatoes.}  (Rita: I used fresh tomatoes and cut them up finely, adding them to the ingred that were in the skillet letting them cook down with the onions/garlic/celery/etc-see below what is done with them- and it worked great, but I had tomatoes I needed to use so I opted for that.)
Now time for the filling!  Heat a skillet over medium heat with two tablespoons of olive oil. Add the onions, carrots and celery and saute for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant. Now, add the zucchini or any other vegetable you are using. Saute the zucchini for about 2 minutes. Now add the tomatoes, vegetable broth, and herbs. At this time season with salt and pepper. Cook the mixture for a few minutes. Now add the spinach and cook until wilted. Add the lentils and cook for another 2 minutes. Add the parsley and lemon juice. Re-season if necessary. 
Lightly oil a casserole dish. Place the peppers in the casserole dish. Now stuff them with the lentil mixture genoursly. Cover them with tin foil and bake them for 25-30 minutes. After 25-30 minutes take the tin foil out and sprinkle the peppers with the topping. Bake uncovered for another 15 minutes until the top is golden brown. That’s it! Let cool for a couple of minutes and serve with plenty of lemon slices!
For the Lemon Panko Topping
Heat a small pan over medium heat with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the panko bread crumbs and thyme, cook for a few minutes until the panko bread crumbs are well coated. Now add the lemon zest and parsley, Season with salt and pepper. That’s it! ~ Jay, The Vegan Foodie 

Now, doesn't this sound wonderful!!! I am so excited about this meal... Also, a friend sent us some fresh squash so I have that in a crockpot and some potatoes in another. It will be a great supper tomorrow night and I can't wait! I have more time to create and enjoy and great supper with my family. It is so hot in Alabama and any meals I can prep in the cooler part of the evening the night before, it rockin' awesome!!

Love, Blessings, & {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com
Monday, July 4, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Recycling plastic container into a WOW!!! Paper Project!!

I needed a visual element for the
children's time at church to show how
God can take something ugly/unusable
and make it beautiful/handsome/usable
and this came to mind...I made it in about
20 minutes using scraps...

I added bling to the lace to make it pop...
I wanted the lid to have the 
embellishment and accents as well...


I added the circle to the inside of the
lid too and ribbon to the outside edge...

The flowers, lace, and ribbon around
the paper edge just made it pop...

I added a Tim Hotlz ticket and a 
beaded stick pin that I made prior
to the project. The large brad has copper
toned glitter and I left the flowers white...

The large tag is from 7Gypsy's...
I just tied a string around the top of the
container to hold the tag. It covers the
back seam nicely. =)

Quick/simply and a great way to 
house a gift for a friend or to display
something on your desk...

A top view of the creation/container...The button
called for the flower/bling don't you think? =)

The whole creation just makes me 
SMILE =) Happiness screams...

I need to find more of these tiny flowers...
they were in a RAK and I don't know who
they were from...

The scripture I used during children's time was in reference was to the potter taking the yucky ugly clay and creating a beautiful piece of pottery and how it has to be refined in the fire. So I used Jeremiah 18:6 which says, "Like clay in the hand of the potter so you are in God's hand." How true that is...I love creating with my hands and making something out of nothing, recycling things that are cast aside into something beautiful...I am so honored God has blessed me with that talent. If there was an art show like the FoodNetwork show "Chopped" but in the basket giving me items to recycle into art, like these in featured in these photos, I would be in my element, happy and complete. I love what I do as an artist. 

Love, Blessings, & {{{Hugs}}} for a Happy July 4th!!!
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com

Saturday, July 2, 2011 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Baking is Dirty Business...

 "baking is dirty business" scrapbooking layout
from "The Heritage Cookbook Photo Album" Scrapbook
by Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs
(I still have to add journaling/memories)


My mother is an awesome cook and baker! OMGosh, is she talented! Growing up, we ate at home and come 6:00 pm, supper was on the table and my friends were at the door hoping a plate would be set at the table for them to join us. My mother was the perfect hostess and would comply with a smile, knowingly having enough for them and leftovers for the next day. However, she would add something to the leftovers the next day so that if they showed up again that there would be plenty for them too. =) My daddy often worked late and a plate would be kept warm in the oven for him. Then there was always desserts in the house, homemade, not a package kind from the store. I can still remember my first purchased chocolate chip cookies! They weren't MOTHER's either!!

I still make the peanut butter cookies by the recipe my mother used, but I don't have to use the recipe even though I have the original copy and I use butter instead of oil. Then there is the Dirt Cake that is in the scrapbook layout in the photograph above with my mother's photo below it. She makes this every Christmas and any other time her grandson Joel and granddaughter Amanda can get her to do so. Then the two of them fight over it and hide it from each other. Before they leave the house, Mother pulls out a fresh container for each of them to take home which delights both of them and gains them hugs given to her and if they are truly excited they just might give each other hugs too which surprise both cousins and us! =)

The original Dirt Cake recipe calls for making it in a clay pot like you put flowers in and adding gummy worms but my mother snarls her nose up in the cuties way about doing such. She would rather put hers in a plastic container and add lots of Oreo cookies, more than the recipe calls for and will even make a sugar free cake too if you wish...which is just as good too! We love my mother's cooking, but as the years have passed, we have noticed a decline in how she cooks. Her age doesn't get her around as she use to but we have her recipes and we have our memories and that is why I am making this recipe scrapbook. I want to scan the pages and make six books, one for my sister and one for each of the grandchildren so they will have all the photographs my mother has at our house and the recipes she has collected over the years. That way we can share these memories and the blogs I am writing about each page I make...

I think I will just start scrapbooking ALL my photos this way! Since I have only been scrapbooking about a year and a half, I am more than overwhelmed with more than thirty years of my personal photographs so...why not...food and family just mesh together don't you think? So...I can embellish with more than just cooking, can't I? Of course I can...just watch me lol...flour or flowers...=)

Love, Blessings, & {{{Hugs}}},
Rita
www.RitaHutchesonCobbs.com

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