✢ Farmer’s Market Finest

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You know summer is here when the Farmer’s Market in Marion Square in downtown Charleston is brimming with locals as well as visitors.  Everyone carries baskets brimming with fresh fruits and veggies and brightly colored flowers and herbs from farms surrounding our beloved Low Country.

Our find this weekend? Okra and more Okra.

My friend and past neighbor, John Taylor of Hoppin’ John’s, shared an easy (and I do mean easy) and delicious pickled okra recipe.  This one comes from his Hoppin John’s Charleston, Beaufort, and Savannah Dining at Home in The Low Country cookbook.  It’s a classic.

Now on to pickling perfection!  Great with any meal, as an appetizer, or in a spicy Bloody. ❈

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✢ Yum!

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Cafe Zest in Charleston is our company’s new meeting place!  Chef Jon Anderson of La Cuisine  peeks from the kitchen to personally greet each visitor.  He is witty, fun, and incredibly creative preparing food.  In fact, he gets so excited, he pops open items he is about to place on his “pick up something on the go” shelf to allow us a taste.
Today: Gazpacho.  Fresh Guacamole.   Supper…..check!  Kids…let’s go to the park.
Do yourself a favor, Go see Jon at Cafe Zest.  334 East Bay St.  Charleston, SC
One word:  YUM!  ❈

✢ Let Them Eat Cake…(Hummingbird Cake that is) along with our family RECIPE! Bon Appetite, friends.

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My middle child was Confirmed last week, and we opted to celebrate Pic-Nic style with Friends, Fried Chicken, Tomato Pie, Mac & Cheese, etc.  As something special for him and his friends, I simply changed the shape of the cake, et voila!  ENJOY! ❈

A special “thank you” to Mary at Lotus Flower who gave two teenage boys oasis to make this project possible.

Hummingbird Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3 large eggs, beaten

1 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup applesauce

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 (8-ounce) can crushed pineapple, undrained

1 cup chopped pecans

2 cups chopped bananas

Cream Cheese Frosting

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened

3 Tablespoons warm milk

2 cups powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Beat all ingredients in a bowl with electric paddle or beater until desired consistency is reached.

Preparation

Combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl; add eggs and oil, stirring until dry ingredients are moistened. (Do not beat.) Stir in vanilla, pineapple, 1 cup pecans, and bananas.

Pour batter into three greased and floured 9-inch round cake pans. Bake at 350° for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans, and cool completely on wire racks.

Spread Cream Cheese Frosting between layers and on top and sides of cake. Store in refrigerator.