Blog

Food

Grilled Salsa Roja

dsc00934

My family loves salsa. We have eaten so much of this wondrous, spicy, delectable sauce over the years that it flows through our veins. That may be a slight exaggeration, but we have consumed our fair share of every kind of salsa. We love everything from restaurant salsa to store bought. Our favorite salsa is homemade.

Fresh salsa can’t be beat. This super simple recipe for salsa roja is fantastic. Just as good, if not better than any restaurant. A few minutes on the grill brings out the sweetness of the tomatoes while adding a rich flavor. I use an immersion blender, but a regular blender works well too. If you have never made salsa this is a great one to try. 

Happy Eating!

You will keep in perfect peace the steadfast of mind, because he trusts in You. Isaiah 26:3

 

dsc00915

Grilled Salsa Roja

Ingredients

2 lbs Roma tomatoes

1 large onion cut in half

3 to 6 garlic cloves

1 large bunch of fresh cilantro

1 jalapeño pepper

juice of 2 limes

3/4 – 1 tablespoon salt

1/2 tablespoon black pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat grill to high.
  2. Grill onion halves for 5 to 10 minutes. Long enough to char the onions, then remove them.
  3. Grill the tomatoes and jalapeño long enough to char them. When the tomato skins split on all sides remove them from the grill. This takes just a few minutes.
  4. Using tongs, remove the tomato skins and cut off the stems.
  5. Place grilled tomatoes, onions, and jalapeño in a large mixing bowl. Add garlic, cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper. Blend thoroughly with an immersion blender. Or place all ingredients in a regular blender and blend.
  6. Taste, and adjust salt and pepper to your liking.

Notes:

  • Half of one jalapeño gives the perfect amount of spice. Add more or less to make it as hot as you like.
  • Add more or less garlic to your preference.

dsc00919

dsc00920

dsc00922

dsc00923

Food

Steak and Potato Foil Packs

dsc00897

Steak and potato foil packs make a perfect summer meal. Tender steak and savory potatoes melt in your mouth. No need to heat up your oven on a hot day. Throw these foil packs on your grill, and in about thirty minutes you will have a delicious supper.

Foil packs are often used while camping, which is a great idea. You can easily cook them on your grill too. This simple, flavorful dinner adds variety to your cookouts. You don’t need to marinade the steak. Just toss everything together and cook. The most time consuming part is the prep, but so worth it.

If you’ve never made foil packs I hope you give these a try. They are yummy!

Happy Eating!

For our God is a consuming fire. Hebrews 12:29

dsc00888

Steak and Potato Foil Packs 

Yield: 4 servings 

Ingredients

1 1/2 to 2 lbs top sirloin steak cut into thin 1 inch pieces

1 1/2 lbs baby potatoes cut into 1 inch pieces

1 medium yellow onion, diced

4 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons worcestershire sauce

juice of one lime

4 cloves crushed garlic

1 tablespoon dried thyme

1 tablespoon dried parsley

1 tablespoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon onion powder

1/2 tablespoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

1/2 to 1 teaspoon red pepper flake (optional)

fresh chopped parsley for garnish (optional)

4 tablespoons butter (1 T. each) for the top of meat/potatoes before sealing the foil 

Equipment

heavy duty aluminum foil cut into 4 large squares approximately 12 x 12 inch

 

Instructions 

  1. In a large mixing bowl whisk together olive oil, worcestershire sauce, lime juice, garlic, thyme, parsley, oregano, onion powder, salt, pepper, and optional red pepper flake.
  2. Add steak, potatoes, and onion. Mix really well to coat everything.
  3. Drizzle about a 1 tablespoon of olive oil on each foil square. Evenly divide the steak and potato mixture between the four pieces of foil.
  4. Salt and pepper each pile, and add 1 tablespoon of butter to the top.
  5. Fold the foil in half like an envelope. Tightly seal the sides and top with a double fold.
  6. Grill the foil packs over medium high heat for 15 minutes per side, for a total of 30 minutes.
  7. Let the foil packs sit for 5 minutes before opening. They will be very hot. Carefully cut a small “x” shape at the center and peel back the foil. Garnish with fresh parsley. Enjoy!

Notes 

  • The steaks will be well done using this method. If you prefer your steak with some pink at the center you will need to cut the steak into 2 inch pieces and cook for 10 minutes each side, or until desired doneness. The potatoes will need to be boiled for 5 minutes before adding to the seasoning mixture and before grilling, if you want medium steaks.
  • While grilling the packs, rotate them a few times per each 15 minutes so they don’t burn.
  • Use the heat of the grill, and try and avoid the flame. If you want to place the foil packs over direct flame you will need to double the foil to prevent burning. 
  • Only turn the foil packs over once on the grill. 
  • If a foil pack tears just add another piece of foil over the tear and continue grilling. 

dsc00881

dsc00882

dsc00884

dsc00885

dsc00887

Photo credit: Meghan E. White 

sickness

The Prayer Shawl

img_6304

The memories of my mom came flooding back when I found this blanket in a closet. I was looking for something, I don’t remember what, when I saw what I thought was a blanket folded up. Then I remembered, Mom’s friend had knit this prayer shawl for her during her chemo treatments for lung cancer.

While I was at my mom’s house right after her death I spent maybe an hour or two going through a small amount of her stuff. This prayer shawl was handed to me by her husband, and I just added it to my little pile of keepsakes. I had not given it a second thought until the other day when I took it off the shelf.

Mom’s precious friend knit the prayer shawl and prayed over it while she was creating this sweet gesture of love. The three stitch pattern represents Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Each time mom wrapped the prayer shawl around herself she was reminded that God’s love covered her.

The prayer shawl has no magic or special powers. It is just a beautiful symbolic picture of God’s love and the power of prayer. When I look at the prayer shawl I see kindness and compassion from a dear woman who cared about my mom. To make something with your hands for the sole purpose of encouraging a suffering human is an act of love.

I am grateful to have this lovely prayer shawl as a reminder of my mom’s suffering and the love of our Heavenly Father holding her in His mighty hands. She was covered in the best way possible, by the power of God. Mom still had pain and cancer never left her body, but God, carried her through all the way home.

The prayer shawl reminds me to pray for the hurting. To lift others up, and be an encouragement when surrounded by discouragement. To pray for God’s covering over the sick and suffering.

Christians are to be people of prayer, all the time. Now, more than ever we must be fervent in our prayers. Don’t stop praying. Pray all those big prayers that are absolutely impossible in our strength. Pray and ask God to heal, to save, comfort, convict, to seek and save the lost. Pray, and pray, and pray.

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Mark 11:24, NIV

Love you all,

Meghan

Father God,

We praise and thank You for Your goodness, faithfulness, and love. There is none like You. We lift up all those who are sick. Heal them, comfort them, and draw them close to You. Cover them in Your love. Encourage all the sick and suffering. You are close to the brokenhearted. May they feel You closer than ever.

In Jesus precious name,

Amen

Food

S’mores Bars

dsc00871

I love s’mores. When our kids were little, camping was a summer tradition that included campfires and s’mores. There is something so heavenly about toasted marshmallow and chocolate sandwiched between two graham crackers. Kuddos to a Girl Scout troop leader, from many years ago, for creating this lovely treat. It’s now a classic.

I have been experimenting with these wonderful bars since last summer. I wanted all the goodness of a s’more without the use of a campfire. After many attempts and tweaks, I feel good about sharing this winning dessert with all of you. It’s so simple, yet full of the perfect amount of sweetness to put a smile on your face.

No fire is required, just the heat of your oven. The Hershey chocolate bar is essential to get that nostalgic taste. Feel free to use chocolate chips if you prefer. Use as much or as little marshmallows. Tweak the toppings to your liking. Bring this to a barbecue or a potluck for a fun treat. To all my s’more loving friends out there, you will love this one. Enjoy!

Happy Eating!

Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. Matthew 5:9

dsc00875

S’mores Bars

Ingredients

3/4 cup salted butter ( 12 tablespoons) softened

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 egg yolk

2 sleeves of graham crackers ( use 14 for the crust and the remaining 4 crackers for the topping)

6 Hershey chocolate bars (regular size)

10 oz. bag of mini marshmallows

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line a 9 x 13 pan with parchment or aluminum foil.
  2. Place 14 graham crackers for the crust in a food processor to make fine crumbs. Break up 4 graham crackers into bigger chunks and save for the topping.
  3. Using a hand mixer, cream butter and sugars. Add the egg yolk, and the graham cracker crumbs. Mix until combined. Press the crust mixture evenly into pan.
  4. Bake crust for 20 to 25 minutes, until lightly brown. Let cool for 5 minutes.
  5. Place 6 Hershey bars on the hot crust. As the chocolate melts use a rubber spatula to spread out evenly.
  6. Sprinkle approximately 1 to 2 cups of the marshmallows on the melted chocolate. Now sprinkle about half of the broken graham cracker crumbs on top. Add another 1/2 to 1 cup of marshmallows on top of that. Now add the remaining graham cracker crumbs.
  7. Change the oven to broil on low. Put the bars under the broiler for 2 to 3 minutes depending on how toasted you want the marshmallows. Stay by the oven and watch. Marshmallows can burn quickly. Let cool. Cut into bars and enjoy!

Notes:

  • Place the warm bars in the fridge to speed up cooling.
  • Spray a knife with cooking spray for easier cutting.
  • Store at room temp to keep the marshmallows soft.
  • Extend the foil or parchment over the edge of the baking dish and then pull the bars out when you are ready to cut.
  • Use as much or as little marshmallows as you prefer.
  • If you don’t have a food processor, use a freezer bag and a rolling pin to smash the graham crackers.

dsc00862

dsc00863

dsc00864

dsc00865

dsc00866

dsc00867

dsc00868

dsc00869

dsc00870

Food

Mexican Street Corn

IMG_1608 (1)

There is nothing like fresh, local corn in the summer. Grilled, and covered in butter has always been my favorite way to eat it. I now have a new favorite way to enjoy corn on the cob. Mexican Street Corn, or elote, is so delicious I may never go back to plain old butter. This fantastic portable concoction is a common street food in Mexico. It’s covered in a creamy sauce and coated with cotija cheese. After my first bite I was hooked, and I think you will be too. 

Corn and Mexico have a long history. In America we are used to the standard golden kernels that we find at farmers markets and grocery stores. In Mexico corn can be white, red, yellow, blue, and black. Some ears even have several colors. There are fifty-nine varieties of corn native to Mexico. A majority of Mexican farmers still save their seeds and plant native strains. Corn is a big deal in Mexico.

Street food is a big deal in Mexico too. No trip south of the border is complete without it. With the trend of food trucks, much of this street food can be found here in the U.S. at local markets and fairs. Or, you can make this deliciousness at home. It cooks up quickly on the grill. 

“For he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.” Psalm 107:9

Happy Eating!

 

 

 

Grilled Mexican Street Corn

 

¼ cup mayonnaise

¼ cup sour cream

1 garlic clove minced

juice of 1 lime

1 teaspoon chili powder

6 ears of corn

½ cup crumbled cotija cheese

¼ cup chopped cilantro

 

  1. Preheat a gas or charcoal grill to 400°.
  2. In a small bowl combine mayonnaise, sour cream, garlic, lime juice, and chili powder.
  3. Place husked corn directly onto grill grates. Grill for several minutes on each side until the kernels turn golden and charred. Remove corn from the grill onto a plate.
  4. Using a brush spread the cream mixture on all sides of the corn.
  5. Sprinkle with cotija cheese and cilantro.

 

Notes:

*I folded back the husks and tied them with twine. It creates a pretty handle.

*Feta or Parmesan cheese can replace cotija cheese.

* Mexican crema, which is slightly salty, can be used instead of sour cream. 

*You may want to add a little salt if you use sour cream.