Poppy Seed Chicken Pasta Salad – Recipe



  • 2 cups fusilli (spiral) pasta
  • 1 1/2 cups cubed cooked free range, organic chicken
  • 6 tablespoons chopped sweet Mayan onion
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 1/2 cup poppy seed salad dressing


  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook pasta in the boiling water, stirring occasionally, until cooked through but firm to the bite, 12 minutes; drain, rinse in cold water, and drain again.
  2. Toss pasta, chicken, onion, cranberries, celery, and almonds together in a salad bowl; drizzle with poppy seed dressing and stir to coat.




Country Fried Cauliflower – Recipe

1 large head of cauliflower
2 large organic eggs, beaten with 1 Tbsp water
3/4 – 1 c King Arthur all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
1/4 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese, finely grated and divided
1/8 tsp sweet spanish paprika
Peanut or Canola oil for frying
1. Wash and cut cauliflower into thick (1/2″) slices* from top to bottom of head (the slice will look like a fan); remove all green leaves and excess root. Leave just enough “root” at bottom to hold the sliced clusters together.
2. Mix together flour, spices, and 1 tbsp parmesan cheese. Dip cauliflower in beaten egg mixture; then coat with flour mixture. Add enough peanut oil to cover bottom of skillet and heat to medium high temperature for frying. Cook cauliflower on both sides until golden brown; do not overcook (2 – 3 minutes each side). Drain on paper towels. Sprinkle on fried cauliflower the remaining 1 tbsp parmesan cheese.
3. Serve as side dish or with remoulade sauce for dipping. Delicious!
4. *Note: If some of the clusters break off into smaller pieces that is fine. Just dip them and fry!


Peanut Butter Pound Cake – Recipe



3 cups King Arthur all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup Jiff creamy peanut butter (don’t use natural)
1/2 cup organic sweet cream butter, at room temperature
3 cups granulated white sugar
6 large organic eggs
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips

1 1/2 cups sifted powdered sugar
1/4 cup organic whole milk
1/4 cup Jiff creamy peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup mini chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray 10-cup tube pan generously with nonstick spray (I like the Baker’s Joy).

2. Prepare cake: In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to cream together peanut butter and butter. Add sugar and beat an additional 5 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla; beat until well combined. Add dry ingredients a little at a time, beating just until incorporated. Stir in chocolate chips. Scrape batter into prepared tube pan. Tap it a couple of times on the counter to shake out any hidden air pockets.

2. Bake 1 hour and 20 minutes, checking on the cake at 1 hour to make sure it’s not browning too quickly on top. If browning too quickly, just place a piece of foil loosely over the top of the pan. When a toothpick is inserted into the center of the cake and comes out clean, your cake is done. Let cool for 20 minutes, then flip it onto a rack or platter and let it cool completely.

3. Prepare glaze: In a medium bowl, whisk together powdered sugar, milk, peanut butter and vanilla until smooth. Drizzle glaze over the top of the cooled cake, letting it drizzle down the sides. Sprinkle chocolate chips on top. The glaze will set eventually- if you’d like to quicken the setting process, just place it into the refrigerator for a bit.


Shrimp & Crab Macaroni and Cheese – Recipe

2 cups Barilla elbow noodles
3 tablespoons organic sweet cream butter ( plus some for greasing)
2 tablespoons King Arthur all purpose flour
2 cups organic half-n-half
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1 pinch cayenne pepper
4 cups Sharp cheddar cheese, grated & 2 cups Provolone/Mozzarella cheese , shredded
2 pinches kosher salt, to taste
2 pinches freshly ground black pepper, to taste
cooked shrimp, patted dry (tails removed)
1/2 cup crabmeat ( fresh, frozen or 12 g can, well drained)
1/4 cup fresh basil
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

In a pot of salted water, cook macaroni until tender, about 8 – 10 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350. Lightly butter an 8 x 8 baking dish and set aside.
In a large sauce pot, add the butter over medium heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring for 2 minutes. Using a whisk, slowly add the milk and cook until it thickens.
Remove the sauce from heat and mix in the half-n-half, paprika, cayenne, salt and pepper. Add 3/4 of the Cheddar cheese and the Provolone/ Mozzarella cheese. When the macaroni is cooked, drain it well. Add to it, the shrimp, crab and basil and gently add the white sauce. Spoon macaroni mixture into the prepared baking dish.
Top with the remaining Cheddar and Parmesan cheese.
Bake for 25 – 30 minutes or until the top is lightly golden.

Southern Flaky Biscuits with Chocolate Gravy – Recipe




  • 1/2 teaspoon lard
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons butter, frozen
  • 1 teaspoon bacon drippings
  • 1 cup buttermilk


  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). Lightly grease a baking sheet with 1/2 teaspoon of lard.
  2. Mix together the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder in a bowl. Grate the frozen butter and 2 tablespoons frozen lard into the flour mixture with a cheese grater; stir lightly 1 or 2 times to mix. With your fingers, make a well in the middle of the flour mixture, and pour the bacon drippings and buttermilk into the well. With just the tips of your fingers, stir lightly and quickly to just bring the dough together before the butter and lard melt. Dough will be sticky.
  3. Scrape dough out onto a floured surface, and gently pat the dough flat. Sprinkle the top of the dough with flour, and fold it in half; pat down, fold again, and repeat until you have folded the dough 4 or 5 times. With a rolling pin, roll the dough out to a square about 1 inch thick. Cut the biscuit dough into rounds with a 2 1/2-inch biscuit cutter or the floured edge of a drinking glass by pushing straight down (twisting the cutter will seal the edge and keep the biscuits from rising). Lay the biscuits onto the prepared baking sheet so the edges just touch.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven until risen and lightly golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes.


Southern Style Chocolate Gravy



  • 1/4 cup cocoa
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter, softened
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla


  1. Whisk the cocoa, flour, and sugar together in a bowl until there are no lumps. Pour the milk into the mixture and whisk until well incorporated. Transfer the mixture to a saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until its consistency is similar to gravy, 7 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir the butter and vanilla into the mixture until the butter is melted. Serve immediately.

Herbed Garden Couscous – Recipe


  • 1 cup whole wheat or plain couscous
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 medium cucumber, coarsely chopped
  • 1 medium green sweet pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup snipped fresh chives
  • 1/4 cup snipped fresh Italian (flat-leaf) parsley
  • 1/4 cup snipped fresh mint
  • 1/4 cup snipped fresh oregano
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, toasted


  1. Cook couscous according to package directions. Fluff with a fork.
  2. Meanwhile, in large bowl combine tomatoes, cucumber, sweet pepper, chives, parsley, mint, and oregano. Fold in couscous.
  3. In a small bowl whisk together the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Pour over couscous mixture and toss to combine. Spoon into serving bowl or cover and chill up to 24 hours. To serve, top with feta cheese and walnuts. Makes 12 side-dish servings.

Honey & Whiskey Marmalade – Recipe

Whiskey and Honey Marmalade

  • 8 Seville oranges
  • 1 quart honey
  • ½ cup Irish whiskey
  1. Scrub the oranges and set them on the rack of an electric pressure cooker. Cover them with water, and soften them in the pressure cooker by cooking them for ten minutes. Let the pressure naturally release, and then rotate the oranges to promote even softening of their rinds, and then pressure cook them a further five minutes. If you don’t have a pressure cooker, place the oranges in a heavy pot or Dutch oven, cover them with water and boil them for 2½ hours, rotating them to ensure even softening of their rinds. Reserve the oranges, and discard the water.
  2. Allow the oranges to cool enough to handle them comfortably. Split them in half cross-wise, and nudge the seeds from their flesh using a butter knife. Discard the seeds. Scoop out the pulp from the orange halves, spoon it into the pitcher of a blender and set it aside.
  3. Quarter the remaining orange rinds, then layer one piece on top of the other, and slice the rinds into matchsticks about ⅛-inch wide and 1-inch long. Drop them into the pot.
  4. Pour the reserved water into the blender with the orange pulp. Blend them together until smooth, and then pour the pulp into the pot with the orange rind. Stir in the honey, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Turn down the heat to medium, and stir the marmalade constantly until set, 30 to 35 minutes. Take the marmalade off the heat, let it cool for five minutes, and then stir in the whiskey.
  5. Spoon into clean jam jars, and process in a water bath for ten minutes.
2016 Valerie Renèe

Valerie’s Copycat Long John Silvers Fried Fish – Recipe

long john silvers fish


  • 2 pounds cod sliced into 3 ounce pieces
  • 2 cups flour

  • 1/4 cup corn starch
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 16 ounces club soda
  • Peanut Oil for frying


If you are not using a fryer, heat up 8 cups of vegetable oil in a heavy pot until the temperature reaches 350 degrees. Make the batter by combining flour, corn starch, sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda, onion salt, paprika, ground black pepper. Stir to combine all dry ingredients. Add club soda to dry ingredients. The batter will foam, continue to stir.

Drop pieces of fish into the batter. Coat fish with batter, drop into hot oil. Fry fish for 2 to 3 minutes or until the batter is golden and the fish pieces begin to float to the top of the oil. Drain fish on a wire rack.

Pressure Cooker Vegetable Beef & Rice Soup – Recipe

Pressure Cooker Beef Veggie Rice Soup


Ingredients :
  • 1lb. lean organic, grass fed ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large organic sweet onion, diced
  • 1 rib organic celery heart, chopped
  • 3 cloves organic garlic, finely chopped or pressed
  • 2 14-ounce cans organic chicken or beef broth
  • 1 14-ounce can organic crushed tomatoes
  • 1 12-ounce bottle Original or Spicy Hot V8 juice
  • 1/2 cup long grain parboiled white rice
  • 1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 large organic potato, peeled and diced into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 organic carrots, peeled then sliced into thin coins
  • 1/2 cup frozen organic peas, thawed
  • Kosher salt and Fresh cracked pepper
  1. Preheat the pressure cooking pot using the browning or sauté setting. Add ground beef to the pressure cooking pot and cook until browned. Remove to a plate lined with paper towels.
  2. Add oil to the pressure cooking pot. Add onion and celery and cook, stirring occasionally until the onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute more.
  3. Add beef broth, tomatoes, V8 juice, rice, garbanzo beans, potatoes, carrots, and browned ground beef to the pot and stir to combine. Lock lid in place, select High Pressure and 4 minutes cook time. When timer beeps, turn off pressure cooker and do a quick pressure release.
  4. Stir in peas and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Tiramisu Cupcake with Coffee Liqueur Mascarpone Frosting – Recipe

Tiramsu Cupcake with Marscapone Frosting

For the cupcakes:
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup organic sweet cream butter, softened
  • 2 large organic eggs
  • 3 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup cold coffee
  • ¼ cup organic sour cream
  • ¾ cup King Arthur all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup King Arthur self-rising flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup coffee liqueur, for soaking cupcakes
For the frosting:
  • ½ cup organic sweet cream butter, softened
  • 2 ounces mascarpone cheese
  • 2 tablespoons coffee liqueur
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • Dusting of cocoa powder, for garnish
For the cupcakes:
  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two standard cupcake tins with 15 paper liners.
  • Using a stand or hand mixer, cream together the sugar and butter on medium speed in a large bowl.
  • Slowly add in eggs, one at a time, and mix on medium speed until combined.
  • Reduce speed to low and add vanilla extract, coffee, and sour cream.
  • In a separate bowl, combine both flours, baking soda, and salt. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, and mix on medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes.
  • Using a large spoon, fill the cupcake liners three-quarters full and bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • When cupcakes come out of the oven and are still warm, poke holes in each cupcake with a fork. Slowly soak each cupcake with 2 teaspoons of coffee liqueur. Let cool.
For the frosting:
  • With a hand or stand mixer, beat softened butter and mascarpone cheese together on medium speed for 3 minutes.
  • Add coffee liqueur and mix on medium speed until thoroughly combined.
  • Slowly add powdered sugar and beat on low for 1 minute.
  • Gradually increase the speed to high and beat for 3 minutes, until fluffy.
  • Gently pipe each cupcake with Coffee Liqueur Mascarpone Frosting. Garnish with a dusting of cocoa powder on each cupcake.
2016 Valerie Renèe