3.20.2014

ANOTHER Blog by Cappy and Pegody?


   We've been mulling over the idea of making another Blog for just cooking, restaurant reviews, and things pertaining just to food. If you know us at all, by now you know we just 'up' and do a lot of things. Well...one day, Cappy just decided "dis is da day", so he did it. He created another Blog for our family and friends, if you'd like to peruse it, called, "The Round Robin's Cajun Cooking Blog". Since our last name is Robin, and the "round"...well, it should be rather obvious as to why we chose that part of the title, or it chose us.

   This "Cappy and Pegody's  World" blog is for our adventures, like fishing or tall tales, stories, family occasions, as usual. All the food stuff, or most of it, will be packed onto the Round Robins, just like in real life. (pegody rolls her eyes). 
   We look forward to hearing from you, on this blog or on the new "The Round Robin's Cajun Cooking Blog". We are open to opinions, comments, or encouragement of our videos, posts or anything you might want to say. C'mon, don't be shy. 
   We'll also take prayers on our new endeavor with the food blog, because as Cappy is thinking up more wonderful Cajun dishes to make and video, he's telling me we need to diet and lose weight; now how is that going to work? After a time, an even newer blog entitled, The Even Rounder Robin's Cajun Cooking Blogggg?
 :-) Anyhow, the link to the new one:  http://theroundrobincajuncountrycooking.blogspot.com/     

3.10.2014

March Square Foot Garden Report

This morning dawned clear and beautiful with the yard full of bird song.  Peg and I grabbed our coffee cups and headed out to one of our favorite spots; our wrought-iron chairs in the grape arbor.  As we looked through the luscious pink Yum-Yum (nectarine) flowers at the beautiful clear blue sky, we figured it was a good time to give this week's garden report.
The garden boxes are doing well,
and the yard is greening up nicely.
When I cut the grass I left a few patches of clovers to help attract the bees.  The plan seems to be working cause the Yum-Yum tree was buzzing when we walked past it.
Looking down the row of boxes the closest one is our salad box.
This loose leaf mix is wonderful and we have been picking enough for us to make huge salads, 4 or 5 times a week for 2 weeks now.
The next box is our asparagus patch.  It is off to a slow start like usual, however if ya look close
you can see a nice fat one just pushing up.
Next is the strawberry patch and although it has been flowering a lot no berries yet. 
In our 4' x 12' garden box we have bush beans for the Spring and they are all up but 3, and growing nicely.  On the far end, the green onions are beginning to spread and do their thing, and just in time cuz we are getting low in the freezer from last Fall's crop.  Bad thing about planting early is: frost got our cucumber plants that we planted on each end of the box.  We will replant them this week and hopefully we will see
them in next months report.
The Japanese aka Loquat plums are swelling and both trees are loaded, so it looks like a good year for them.  I have already had several inquiries about them from my wine-making friends.
Last, but far from least to report, is the budding of our fig tree.  It is the son of our last tree, that was wiped out by a hurricane.  It is finally getting big enough for us to have enough figs for a pie or something.  Time will tell.

 As we walked back to the house we were making plans of picking as many grapefruit as we can off our loaded-to-the gills tree. We squeeze them to make the sweetest, brightest juice. A lot of folks from around here say they don't like grapefruit, but we have a theory about why they don't. It is in the late Fall is when the citrus harvest begins, so along with lemons, limes, and oranges, they pick their grapefruit, too. We've learned that the grapefruit need more time to ripen to develop  their sweetness because they are so much larger. Here it is nearly March and this is when our grapefruits are at their peak. The folks who don't like grapefruit say that what they don't like is the sourness and bitterness. Well, that's because they've tried them when they were also trying the sweet oranges. That was too early.  To our credit, we have persuaded a few of our neighbors to at least give 'em another try. So, along with the grapefruit we plan on picking this afternoon to juice, we also have to bag some to bring to our friends who are now turned on to them...and they want the bags to be big...and loaded. We don't mind; there's plenty to go around. God has certainly Blest our yard, so we can in turn, bless others. Aint that how it's s'posed to work?   


2.26.2014

Cappy's Cajun/Italian Lemon Ice For Grown Ups

With so much lemon juice "burning a hole" in our freezer, Cappy keeps coming up with different ways to "spend it". The lemon jelly was great, lemon squares were wonderful, lemon zest candy disappeared quickly, and we gave friends bottles of the juice. I forgot to mention the jars of hot lemon pepper jelly that melts in your mouth if it's sitting atop a little cream cheese, which is then also sitting prettily atop a cracker. Brave souls try this hot pepper lemon jelly straight up and end up in tears. If they are persuaded to try it again, using the cream cheese and crackers route, they end up guzzling the whole jar and beg for another jar to take home. If they try it with the cheese and crackers at first blush, the end results are still the same. We've lost a lot of good jars of jelly that way.
I see I have gotten off topic again. So. Back to the lemon juice that is sitting in the freezer.  I use it on everything from salad dressings to marinades, and so does Cappy, and thus, here we sit with gallons of it in the freezer, and it's laden with all sorts of wonderful possibilities.
    Now, Cappy has heard me saying over and over again how much I love Italian Ice, and he's heard me whining that I can't find Italian Ice in most stores without wheat in it (Why wheat, of all things, in icy anything??) I've thought about freezing lemonade in ice cube trays, then whizzing the cubes in the blender, to make a fake lemon Italian Ice concoction, but never got around to it, seeing it was just for me, and thus, not a priority on my...uh...priority list.
    Since, as I mentioned, Cappy has heard me go on and on, time and time again about my missing my lemon Italian Ice, he got an inspiration. To quote the Grinch,"...he got an idea. An awful idea. The 'Cappy' got a wonderful *awful* idea!"  He went to making his version of ...well, he called it Cajun Ice...or...Cajun sherbet...or..."something like that".  Then, seeing that scheme worked and I ate the whole thing...hence the, *awful* part of the "wonderful awful" idea, he came up with another hideous twist for his delicious icy brew with me in mind. The Southern Snowball. You see, I'm already hooked on these. My friend, Louise got me hooked on 'em, and I've gotten my own Yankee victims hooked on them as well. It's hard to find a really good snowball down here in the south, but when you find the good ones, they become part of any excuse to find yourself back in that neighborhood, no matter how far away it is, and often. Not to be confused with the snow cones they sell up north, because those northern snow cones are like tiny pieces of hail, packed into paper cones, drizzled with blue or red, all-but-flavorless thick sugar water. To the uninformed, they may pass as refreshing on a hot Summer day. The vendor who would dare try passing these weak specimens off to customers down here in the South, would most likely have a pack of dogs sic'd on 'em and they'd be run "plum outa town". They can't hold a candle to the snowballs that they have down here. (Not that anyone would want to, or should hold a candle to a snowball anywhere, anyhow. Why would they?)
   Dang, I ran off the road, into the ditch and down across the field again as far as what I was trying to say, didn't I? Okay. Southern Snowballs. Wonderful shaved ice, flavored with the most delectable pungent tastes imaginable. And Cappy knows I love 'em. They might start out like Italian Ice, but then after the lemon or whatever flavor has been added, they add condensed milk or ice cream or both (loaded). They serve it in cups. Big cups, which they call "small" in most places and "medium" takes about an hour for me to finish. I've never imposed on my liver, adrenals or whatever regulates sugar/insulin, by trying the large size. The several  bouts of brain freeze brought on by trying to consume the small cup is enough for me. But...they are FABULOUS! And this is what my evil Cajun kitchen genius had in mind this time around. With all that being said, I will now let Cappy, via this latest little video do the rest of the talking. Your link:   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wQny4Bi04eo&list=UUe6CkaSkPG0EXROyp-xQkjw&feature=c4-overview     

2.15.2014

Charley Brown Cookies

Peggy found this amazingly simple gluten free cookie recipe.  It has become one of our favorites.  These lil guys are so tasty they wake ya up during the night seductively calling your name until ya have to go get one of them.
The recipe:
1 cup of peanut butter (we like extra crunchy)
1 cup of chocolate chips (take ya pick, milk chocolate, semi or dark.  even caramel chips if ya wanna)
2 eggs
1 Tablespoon of vanilla
a pinch of salt
3/4 cup of sugar 
(we use 1/2 cup of honey instead)
  Also when Peg aint lookin'I add another half a cup or so of chocolate chips.

 
Stir it up into a doughy consistency and spoon them out onto parchment paper on a cookie sheet.  No flour or oil needed that way. Bake at 350 degrees for ~12-14 min. til nice and lightly browned. (The color on the computer makes them look very brown) Remove them by pancake turner and cool them on a cookie rack for 5 minutes.

COOKIES!!


















In honor of Valentine day Peg made some heart shapes of some that we gave away as gifts.

This is the second time we made these wonderful cookies.  They were so good that we made some to share.  They are very healthy with no gluten and no added oil, which is amazing on acounta how good they are.  A wonderful Valentine day treat!
They gone.

2.10.2014

February 2014 Square Foot Garden Report

Yesterday, February 9, 2014 dawned clear and sunny with the temperature right at 70 F.  We decided what a great time to play in the yard!  We got our box gardens fixed up, did some pruning and getting ready to do our February fertilizing of the fruit trees and such.

These are our garden boxes.  The first 3 are 4 ft. x 4 ft., and the garden box is 4 ft. by 12 ft.  A good thing to remember is: the length of a raised bed doesn't matter, but it shouldn't be over 4 ft wide.  That way you can easily reach across it from both sides.
The first box is currently our salad bowl.  It is planted with a mix of leafy greens.

Looking close, you can see the salad greens are already just beginning to show.  The next box in line is our asparagus box, but it is currently dormant so we didn't include a photo for it.  By next month however the lil asparagus spears will be showing.  We can hardly wait.

After the asparagus box is the strawberry patch.  The plants are growing, and if you look closer they are flowering.

We have seen several flowers but no berries yet.  We think that's due to the lack of honey bees which seem to be napping now because of the cold spells we've been having of late.  There are plenty clovers in the yard and as soon as they bloom I am sure the bees will return.

We had to put up kitty fences on acounta our garden boxes look like litter boxes to them.  We didn't put the fence up til today 'cause we figure a lil kitty fertilizer wouldn't hurt.  We decided not to plant a winter garden this year, so last November we covered our garden with hay.  The kittys helped keep it stirred all winter and now its well on the way to compost.  The only thing growing in the garden now is green onions to the left of the picture, and Some romaine on the right that we sprouted from store-bought lettuce remains.  We figured 'stead of having them come up in the compost pile we would give a few of them a chance in the garden.  The hay makes a wonderful mulch for the garden.  You can see here that it is also a wonderful organic weed controller.

When we first put it down, it required some weeding as the hay seeds sprouted.  After the first cold snap it calmed down and is doing a great job.  We plan to spread little bare spots in the hay, exposing the soil where we'll plant each seed next month, then as the seed grows into plants, we'll move the mulch/hay back in closer to keep the plant from drying out and to keep weeds at bay.  We hope you find this helpful and informative, and plan to do more gardening posts this year in an effort to share our yard and gardening techniques with you. We don't know it all, and don't pretend to, but we keep learning; most of the time, the hard way. But we succeed enough to make it fun enough for us to keep trying.
So, get out there and play in your yard when you can.  We do, and the benefits are too numerous to mention, but top of 'em all has to be, its tasty!

2.03.2014

Healthy Cajun Deer Meat Jambalaya

In an effort to eat healthy and maybe lose a few pounds, Peggy and I decided to tweak one of our favorite ole Cajun dishes and make it more diet friendly, while keeping that yummy Cajun flair.
 
We seasoned up a couple pounds of cubed, lean deer meat (a gift from one of our friends) with our own special Cajun spice, some Crystal Hot sauce, and a couple splashes of Lee and Perrins Worcestershire sauce.
We added 2 diced yellow onions, and began carefully browning it in our well seasoned black iron pot with no oil.
Because we were using no oil, we had to stir often and deglaze with water until we had the meat browned.  Once the meat browned we added a can of Rotel tomatoes and a small can of drained mushrooms.
After a couple hours of simmering,
.
We added half a bell pepper and a handful of sliced green onion greens.  I put in 5 cups of water, a pinch of salt, and brought it to a boil.  
We put in 2 cups of long grain brown rice, let that boil for 7 minutes, then turned the fire way down, slammed the lid on and forgot about it for an hour or so.

With a few fresh veggies and a good ole Opelousas yam, it was fine eating indeed, but with no oil, no sausage, no etc., that us Cajuns like to add to jambalaya.  If this is diet food sign me up!:drool



1.29.2014

Gift Fish

While Peggy and I were busily repairing my ole recliner Sunday morning, (another story) I couldn't help but think that it would have been a great day to go fishing.  Warm outside, a 'cold front" was approaching, and the barometer was falling, which always gets the fishies excited.  They sense the weather change and stock up on whatever they can find to eat before the bad weather gets there.  If ya lucky, its your bait.
  While screwing my broken recliner back together, the phone rang and it was my buddy "Smokin' Sam" wondering if I wanted a dozen fresh caught "sac au lait".  Well, being me, I said, "SURE!", and it wasn't long before a bucket full of still-wiggling fish showed up!  While Peggy put the upholstery back together on my usta be recliner, now big comfy chair, I scaled the fish and removed the fins.  Cajuns call these delicious lil pan fish "sac au lait", which translates to "bag of milk".  It refers to their flakey snow white flesh.  You may know them as white perch, or crappie. 
The next day I took 4 of them and lightly dusted them with my own special Cajun seasoning.
Then I added some lemon juice, a few dashes of Crystal Hot Sauce, a little ketchup, and a handful of green onion.

They were then tightly covered with aluminum foil and put in a 350F oven for 30 minutes.  When ya remove the foil be careful not to get steamed.  There will be some natural fish broth in the pan, and its great to spoon on top of the fish.

This is a wonderful fish cooked with no oil in its natural juices.  Paired with some steamed veggies and a tossed salad with the dressing being the vinegar from the sliced pepperoncini.  It's hard to believe something so very tasty could be so healthy at the same time.

1.26.2014

Cappy! Why Are Ya Always Cooking So Much BBQ?

Surely you kindred spirits get this question from folks that don't understand us "pit heads".:grilling_smilie:  "Cappy, it's just the two of you, wtf ya cookin' so much chicken for???" Folks just don't get it.  "Why do a whole 12 lb. pork butt, or a big ol' brisket for just yall?"  Well, I guess the answer is...'cause it's fun!!!!:yahoo:We did like 8 lbs. of chicken thighs.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRMYM4Rdi_0

How do ya justify something like this?? Well, my answer is: I have learned over the years to be the 'master of leftover BBQ'.  I mean, let's face it; I aint got a restaurant or BBQ stand, as an outlet for all the food we cook. It's seldom that I can scare up enough folks to account for a pit full of so much meat, but I love doing it, so I have created a number of dishes that uses the leftovers. I figure that supports my logic for filling the pit, smoking up the neighborhood, and having a ball doing it. The weird thing is; most of the folks doing the questioning about it, do it with one of my ribs in their hand.:ROTF
Anyway, I digress. What do yall do with your leftover BBQ? How do you justify your pit passion??
Here is one of my favorite leftover chicken dishes: chicken and black-eyed peas.



Good cooks don't hafta measure most of the time. I like to think I might be one of them, so what I did was place a few pieces of leftover chicken in the bottom of our large cast-iron pot. I coulda used a smaller pot, but, but I had recently used and cleaned this pot, and had set it on the stove to dry, where it sat lookin' all seductive and handy. LOL...I tole ya I LOVE to cook, and from earlier posts,  you know I love my black-iron pots, like any good Cajun does. This particular pot has been in my family for over a hundred years and been to more gatherings and get togethers than even I would ever know about. So, I invited this beloved ol' "gal" to this "party" by whacking up an onion, a piece of Cajun sausage, and a spoonful of my own Cappy's Cajun spice, a pound of dried black-eyed peas, covered it with water and set it to simmering. A trick my Mama taught me is: when cooking dried beans, ya only add the water a lil at a time, as  needed.   So, that's what I'm doing. It's a great way to spend a Sunday, watching movies with a pot of beans simmering on the stove. It's also a great way to continue enjoying the 'fruits' of my rusty ole BBQ pit that I had fun with the other day.  :icon_biggrin:

Some people might also say that I'm easily amused, but I would say I just appreciate the little things in life. I take joy (Cajun joie de vivre) enjoying the "simple life". (...And I hope dat answers the question.)

1.25.2014

Cappy's Cajun Smoked, Hot Chicken Thighs

Funny how things change.  Thanks to the Buffalo Hot Wing craze ya can't get chicken wings for less than $2.50 a lb these days, while we often find leg quarters on sale for 50 cents a lb.  Well it didn't take this ole cost-conscious country boy long to load up on 10 lb sacks of leg quarters and cut them up and start making 'hot legs" or 'hot thighs" instead of hot wings.  I mean shucks, they got more meat on them anyways.


  .
I put my chicken marinating in a mixture of:


12oz. of beer
1/4 to 1/2 cup of my own Cappy's Cajun Seasoning to taste; approx.( I shake & don't measure.)
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons Crystal Hot Sauce, to taste
1 tablespoon Liquid Crab Boil
1 tablespoon Worchester sauce


The chicken soaks in the spicy marinade, then when we put the chicken on the pit. We pour the marinade in a small saucepan, add a stick of butter and reduce it by like 1/3.  Simmering the sauce kills any raw chicken germs as well as "marries" all the flavors and thickens the sauce.  We use it to "mop" onto the chicken as it cooks, to flavor and help keep it moist.

On accounta it was sleeting and freezing rain,

 I hadda fire up the charcoal chimney inside the pit to protect it from drippage.


Once the carcoal was lit,

 I put the chicken on the pit and the marinade in a small saucepan with a stick of butter, to reduce on a low heat..


Now we cookin':439: 
So now, on accounta it being an "icicley" kinda rainy day, I occasionally take a sip from the jug of "antifreeze" that lives on the windowsill of the shed.


After an hour I gave the chicken a mop.

.
When I  say "mop",  you can tell I  aint jokin':drool: 

After a couple hours it's mostly done so I turned it overNot for even cooking, but so I  could mop the other side.th_wsmsmile0ly.gif


After 2 and a half hours of moppin',moppin',moppin',floppin', moppin', I called them "did".



Job completed, I retreated back into the warm house with my "hot thighs" and sausage, and enjoyed the rest of the freezing cold, cloudy drizzly, icy icicles from inside, looking out the window, while all snuggled in my recliner enjoying the rewards of my fun, "miserable" Winter Day. Hope yall enjoying your winter wherever yall are at. 
   Well, it appears that since the last photo won't load on here for some reason, I'll give you the option to see it on the little video we made along with taking the photos you see here. To see the video, click on the link and as usual, it will take you to our "Cappyandpegody's channel" over there on youtube.    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRMYM4Rdi_0&list=UUe6CkaSkPG0EXROyp-xQkjw&feature=c4-overview