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Posts tagged ‘Soul Food’

For the Love of Pie:  Sweet Potato Candied Pecan Pie 

Yes, it has been a ton of Sundays since I posted.  I apologize for staying away so long; but I needed to sort some things out while I adjust to my new environment.  Well, now I am fairly adjusted and I am back in the kitchen creating.  In time for the holidays, I bring you pie.  I give to you a recipe that combines 2 of my favorite pies: sweet potatoe pie & pecan pie.  Enjoy 😋

Sweet Potato Candied Pecan Pie

1 traditional pie crust

Candied Pecan Filling:

1 1/2 cup chopped pecans

3/4 cup organic sugar

1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract

1/3 cup unsalted butter

Preheat oven at 350 degrees.

ONEAdd sugar, vanilla extract, and butter to a medium sauce pan on medium heat.

TWOTurn heat off.

THREEStir in pecans.

FOURPour pecan mixture into pie shell.

Sweet Potato Pie Filling:

1/4 cup unsalted butter melted

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 large sweet potato baked (sppon out inards & discard the skin)

2 tablespoons milk

1/3 cup organic sugar

1 tablespoon flour

1 pinch cinnamon

Little less than 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

ONECombine all ingredients, except for flour, into a food processor.  Blend until smooth.

TWOStir in flour to thicken mixture.

THREEPour, carefully, the sweet potato mixture over the candied pecan mixture.

Pie Layered

Layers of Yummy Goodness

FOURBake pie for about 40 minutes or until pie is done in the middle.

Slice of Happiness

FIVEEnjoy 😋😋😋

NOTEServe with whipped cream or ice cream. For an extra treat, sit some candied pecan filling aside & top pie slices with a dollop of candied pecan filling.

Grits with a Twist:  Roasted Veggies & Cheesy Grits

I know what you are thinking.  It is okay.  There are days I can’t believe it either & I wanna know what the hell am I doing putting vegetables in a dish that should contain a protein that runs and jumps.  

Lately, I have been eating less meat.  Truth be told, I feel a whole lot better now that I have consistently eat more vegetables.  I don’t feel sluggish.  I have more energy than I had when I was in college.  I’m kinda liking what I see in the mirror.  My stomach isn’t so flabby.  My legs are shaping pretty good. 

In order to NOT miss meat, I am remixing my own recipes.  My key to eating more vegetables is seasoning.  You can go from Cajun cauliflower to lemon pepper cauliflower by simply changing spices.

This flavor remix is to my Shrimp & Cheesy Grits recipe.  Instead of shrimp, I turned the flavor on an array of roasted vegetables 🙂 and black beans.

Roasted Vegetables

1 Red Bell Pepper
1 Head of Cauliflower
1 Small Green Zucchini
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Chipotle Chili Pepper
1 teaspoon Onion & Herb Seasoning

ONEPreheat oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
TWOClean veggies & cut into small pieces.
THREEPlace veggies in a bowl.
FOURAdd EVOO & seasonings.
FIVEToss until all veggies are well covered.
SIXPlace veggies on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
SEVENRoast veggies in the oven for about 15 minutes or until veggies are browned.

Roasted Veggies

Roasted Veggies

Black Beans

1/2 cup canned vegan black beans rinsed
1 tablespoon chopped shallots
1/2 teaspoon garlic
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil

ONEAdd oil to a skillet on medium heat.
TWOSauté garlic & shallots until translucent. Be careful to not burn the garlic.
THREEAdd beans to skillet & sauté for about 5 minutes.

Cheesy Grits

1 1/2 cup shredded aged white cheddar cheese
1 ounce cream cheese
2 cups water (plus a 1/4 cup of water set to the side)
1/2 cup grits

ONEAdd water & grits to medium saucepan.
TWOCook mixture on medium heat.
THREEWhisk mixture to prevent from sticking.
FOURAs mixture thicken, turn heat to low.
FIVEAdd cheese to mixture & continue to stir until all cheese is melted.
NOTEAdd a little extra water if necessary prior to adding the cheese. If grits look dry, add a little bit of water.

Assemble Roasted Veggie & Cheesy Grits with Black Beans

ONEAdd grits to a bowl.
TWOAdd beans.
THREETop with roasted veggies.

Roasted Veggies & Cheesy Grits with Black Beans

Roasted Veggies & Cheesy Grits with Black Beans

It’s Not Goodbye. It’s Hello.

I missed soooooooo many holidays. I missed soooooooo many possible posts. This chick was busy making some changes before 2016.

I know July was my last post; but I was busy saying, ‘Until we meet again’, to my favorite city, Chicago. I traded pizza, lemon pepper wings, and State Street for clam chowder, sourdough bread, and Market Street. I moved to East Bay area of California.

When I settled in the Bay Area, I had felt the need to visit Brown Sugar Kitchen, located on Oakland’s Westside.

Brown Sugar Kitchen

Brown Sugar Kitchen

Each time I visited Brown Sugar Kitchen there was a wait. And honestly, the food was well worth the wait. Chef Tanya Holland’s soul food creations will make your taste buds happy. My favorite item on the menu is the Cornmeal Waffle. The light and airy waffle served with brown sugar butter & apple cider syrup truly dissolves in your mouth with minimum effort.

Chicken & Waffles

Chicken & Waffles

Check out Brown Sugar Kitchen’s website for the hours & location. I have added a few pictures detailing my taste excursion.

Chai Tea Latte

Chai Tea Latte

Brown Sugar Kitchen

2 Eggs, Chicken Sausage, Toast, & Breakfast Potatoes

Breakfast Potatoes

Breakfast Potatoes

Brown Sugar Pop Tarts

Brown Sugar Pop Tarts

Happy Birthday Stop Two: Grub Restaurant

See, I keep my promises. I told you I would come back to birthday stop number 2 🙂 Birthday stop number 2 was at Grub Restaurant located in Chicago’s University Village neighborhood at 1230 W. Taylor Street.

Grub Restaurant

Grub Restaurant

When I first read about the soul food restaurant that opened a few months ago, I was a little skeptical. I rolled my eyes when I read that Grub was a ‘healthy’ soul food restaurant. I smirked to myself because I have experienced too many soul food restaurants that served dishes that were too salty and too greasy.

I went to Grub one afternoon for lunch. I ordered The Double Crunch entrée. The Double Crunch consists of Chef Emanuel Washington’s signature fried chicken and mac & cheese muffin (it isn’t a muffin; but a serving of Mac & cheese). I also ordered a side of collard greens.

Food at Grub Restaurant

The Double Crunch

After one bite, it was evident that Grub is a restaurant that delivers on its promise of being healthy while delivering on taste. The only thing that was a disappointment was when I ran out of macaroni & cheese. I ate this side I think in less than a minute.

I am happy that Grub is a not a counter service or buffet style soul food restaurant. It is nice to be able to sit at a cloth covered table with cloth napkins inside a contemporary decorated atmosphere. I like that Grub shows the elegant side soul food without emptying your wallet.

I waited to post this review because I thought I would have gone back to Grub to experience their Sunday brunch. Yep, they serve Sunday brunch from 11 am to 5 pm.  And I will be checking them out for brunch.