Last weekend I informed my husband I was craving a oven baked ham like I used to do before the days of the wonderful smoker prepared hams he does so well. I have to say I have enjoyed the past few years with Greg smoking the turkey and ham which gave me the room in the oven and the time it took. But like they say, you can take the girl out of the country but you can’t take the country out of the girl. I think the same goes as you can take the cook out of the kitchen but you can’t take the kitchen out of the cook. Yep, I was craving it and you may have figured something out about me, I will not be denied. As I was baking this wonderful and best smelling ham, my mind was already going to making all of the extra meals.
The pictures show several ways to use a baked ham. As someone who doesn’t like to waste any food, I will share a list of selections of how I will use leftover ham. I start thinking of what meals I use the meat at the onset of preparing it.
How to use a baked ham for many meals without getting tired of it:
Ham and rice (cook the rice in some broth with the ham pieces). Add garden peas and carrots or celery for flavor.
Ham and stewed potatoes (Stew potatoes with onions and add ham pieces to enhance the potatoes) You can add vegetables but I prefer the ham and potatoes.
Make a ham crusted pie. Use a bag of frozen vegetables thawed and a can of cream of celery or mushroom thinned with some heavy cream. Add cubed ham and mix with salt and pepper, garlic salt if you like, place in a frozen pie crust that you can bake but not brown and cover with another pie crust. Bake at temperature on pie crust package.
Breakfast suggestion: Slice ham and place in hot skillet to fry slightly and use in biscuits with fried or scrambled eggs. The slightly browning will make a great taste change from baked ham.
Cube ham pieces and add to soups. You can freeze the cubes and conveniently add to so many dishes as needed.
I could keep listing meal suggestions but you can use your own ideas once the creative juices begin to flow like the ham juices that come from making your own. I love fast and easy preparation but taking some time and preparing the foundation foods are worth every minute. Thanks for allowing me to share my ham ideas with you. It is great the first meal, fantastic the second round, and even more wonderful when you can freeze some for the next time you crave some old fashioned, slow baked ham by thawing it out and not even having to cook dinner. Until We Cook Again…..Happy Meals from Arline Miller, the Reinvention Queen.
(C) Copyright, 2012-2021 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third Party Material is sourced to original location and author if known for credit references.
From the number of views on the last post about using my InstaPot, I could tell a lot of you are interested about learning more about these convenient ways to cook. I have to say that when my husband purchased my InstaPot, I was slightly apprehensive from the stories of the old style pressure cooker and did not use it “instantly”. I want to put that worry to rest. As with any appliances, you should follow the instructions and only the methods they have approved. I love my InstaPot now and My Power Air Fryer Oven is the bomb.
What I would like to give you are some tips on using the air fryer for the handy-dandy leftover warming magician:
We prepare a large amount of sausage, bacon, and other meats, burgers, etc. for the convenience of having a quick put together breakfast, lunch, or snack. A few minutes and all of these foods warm up without getting the microwave softening. Easy to clean, no pots to wash, so we use ours sometimes several times a day.
Leftover biscuits, rolls, croissants, buns, and toast as well as pastries brown so easily and have a crispy outside crust. This has sold me on the air fryer.
Using the air fryer oven saves us time as we can use it, remove the grill shelf which washes great in the dishwasher, and we are done.
I haven’t figured out why hot dogs taste incredible in the air fryer, but it is almost like grilled hot dogs without having to crank up the grill.
French fries are like the fast food restaurants if you use the method they suggest. We have the turn barrel and I can’t tell the difference except for the absence of so much grease from the fast food fries.
I can go on and on about using the Power Air Fryer Oven but it will be more fun if you get on the air waves and make something yummy and so convenient. I take my door off mine, keep it clean by easy method, and it sits on my counter ready to make my life easy.
Happy Meals to You….Until We Cook Again….Arline Miller, Reinvention Queen.
(C) Copyright 2012-2021 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third Party Material is sourced if known to original location for credit references.
First, let me say, and some of you already know, I am an avid Southern style cook and baker. Born in Georgia, and a true Georgia Peach, I was taught to cook, fry, and bake at an early age. I stirred, mixed, separated, and whisked with the best of southern cuisine. Oh yes, I can roll out dumplings and bake a mile high cake. I love to plate pretty food using colorful combinations. While I can do this with a easy skillset, I have learned to use tools, appliances and ways to make my kitchen life easy. These methods don’t take away from taste at all. It’s in the seasoning my friends, use those herbs, spices, and broths to bring it all together……just simpler and easier. Does this mean I have stopped my southern style meals? Not hardly, I combine my styles and I am not always hovering over a hot stove every meal.
Yesterday, I took out ground chuck and also saw a pack of stew beef and took out that package too. When my husband called saying he was on his way home from his American Legion Leader Conference and it would be over an hour, I took a look at the package of stew beef and my InstaPot was calling my name. I grabbed the pot down from its place on the shelf. Here is how simple and in 35 minutes of pressuring, it was so tender and hot when Greg walked in the door.
InstaPot Stew Beef made entirely in 40 minutes from package to noodles:
1 pkg of good quality stew beef (already in chunks so no chopping
1 Large Onion (chopped in large chunks
1 pkg Ranch Dressing Mix
1 pkg. Lipton Dry Garlic & Herb Soup mix
1/2 carton Beef Broth
Salt and Pepper
Directions: Saute the beef after sprinkling both pkgs of Dry Seasoning mixes with a Tablespoon of Olive Oil. Add chopped Onions and Salt and Pepper
Add small amount of Beef Broth to deglaze bottom. Once deglazed, add the rest of beef broth. If not adding other optional ingredients, close lid and follow instructions for Meat and Stews and locking procedures. Pressure for 35 minutes.
Optional add ingredients: Carrots, potatoes, peppers, mushrooms. Serve over rice, mashed potatoes, or noodles (I used pre-cooked linguine, so easy for quick meals)
Air Fryer Drumsticks
Before I go into this quick and easy way to make a lot of drumsticks (our grands love drumsticks), I think we are all watching our budgets as food costs are rising but you can use this recipe for thighs, and breasts. Remember that breasts are drier so don’t overcook them.
Instant Pot Chicken Drumsticks
These Instant Pot Chicken Drumsticks are so easy to make – brush them with BBQ sauce and broil in the oven for crispy chicken!Prep Time5 minsCook Time20 minsTotal Time25 minsCourse: Main CourseCuisine: AmericanKeyword: chicken drumsticks Servings: 4 servings Calories: 308kcal Author: Taylor Stinson
3/4 cup water
8 chicken drumsticks
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp each salt & pepper
1/2 cup BBQ sauce
Add water and trivet to the bottom of Instant Pot. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix together spices then coat chicken in the mixture, rubbing well all over.
Place lid on Instant Pot and make sure valve is set to seal. Press the pressure cook button and set to high, then cook for 10 minutes. Instant Pot will take about 5-10 minutes to come to pressure then pressure cook for 10 minutes.
Let the Instant Pot do a natural pressure release. Meanwhile, set oven to broil on medium-high and adjust wrack to the second highest placement.
Open the lid when pressure gauge has dropped and the lid opens easily. Carefully remove chicken with tongs, then transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Broil drumsticks for 1-2 minutes per side, watching closely so they don’t burn.
Add chicken to a large bowl then toss in BBQ sauce. Serve and enjoy!
As I get older and not so sure about the wiser, I have been returning to my childhood days and finding out that we may have the clue to life. For all of you who are younger, much younger, this message may question all the healthy plans you have but even if it doesn’t change your mind, it may encourage you to lift you eyes, head, and even your body away from your almost permanent fixture called Iphone. Bear with this ole gal as I give you a glimpse of life before all this technology.
First, let me give you a clue. In the 40’s, 50’s, and even 60’s there were hardly any obese children. Some adults were overweight, but not a large majority. It wasn’t that we didn’t eat carbs and sugars, we ate plenty of the fats too. It was activity both in work and relaxation. I smiled thinking of how many calories we burned while playing ball, swimming, running and chasing, climbing, and any other activity we could find. We walked, we ran, and we used every limb of our body as well as every limb in every tree we could climb. We MOVED!
Work was physical. I can remember working at Sears while still in school and my job was filling bags of returned merchandise which weighed at least 40+ pounds and throwing those bags on a pile which by the end of the day got very high. I thought nothing of it. I was strong and I got paid to do it. Nuff said. When I got off work, I studied. I didn’t play video games and I also did my chores around the home.
Don’t get me wrong, I got tired. What is wrong with getting tired? I am not writing this complaining about my younger life, I am proud of what I could do physically. Today, it seems as if people have to go to a gym to get a work out, and they boast about what they can lift or how many miles they can do on a machine. What happened to morning runs in the fresh air? What happened to doing yard work? What happened to growing a garden to provide those healthy foods? Man, we are ordering our food online and getting it delivered so no exercise going up and down the aisles. Are you beginning to see the picture of why we are in the fix as a human race?
I don’t have factual proof but I am sure that the experts have looked at this so why would the majority of people think we have to change our entire eating habits? Leafy greens, yes but we ate mustard, turnip, and collard greens on a regular basis. No bread? What, we had bread at every meal but our bread was not filled with preservatives since we ate it before it could go bad. Sweets, by all means but they were a treat and not a staple. We would look forward to a home made treat, a pound cake, save our leftover biscuits for a biscuit pudding, or oatmeal cookies. But we MOVED. We washed our dishes and dried them before putting them away. We didn’t plop down on the sofa as we had our baths to take, clothes to be ironed after washing them and Wait for it, hang them on the line to dry. There hasn’t been a laundry additive invented that will rival the fresh air line dried clothes. I remember sticking my nose and smelling them as I put them in the basket after taking the clothes pins out.
Here are my recommendations to healthy life changes:
Activity is important so clean up your home by cleaning out closets, utility rooms and houses, rearranging furniture, and even remodels if possible. Vacuum cleaners give a natural workout as I have never seen it work without some pushing activity. Window cleaning, floor sweeping, and a multitude of gym activities can be replicated without ever leaving home and a lot of pride when it is spic and span.
Cooking food for your family. You can choose the type and what goes in each dish and the fresher the better. I chose several years ago to cut portions and not food groups. I eat from every food group but I don’t eat a lot from any of those groups. You would be surprised by learning control without elimination of the foods I like. Example: We were looking forward to eating from Olive Garden for a night away from cooking. I skipped appetizer and yes, even salad and chose Cheese Ravioli. Greg had gotten mozzarella sticks (Oh no, not fried mozzarella sticks you are thinking). I pulled out two sticks and here’s the amount I ate with those two sticks, I ate 2 cheese raviolis and was totally full. I didn’t eat bread. I felt satisfied. I don’t know if this works for anyone else and am not advocating this is the only way to eat. All I know is I have slowly taken off 41 pounds and feel like I don’t live to eat but eat to live and it feels good.
Development of a MOVE attitude. Get off Social Media, do some stretches, clean and organize, take a look at your clothes and develop “I will get back into those smaller sizes”, and realize who actually controls your mind, body, and life style. There’s nothing wrong with going to the gym, I am definitely not saying that but you may find you get a better workout if you get up off your backside, quit feeling sorry for yourself and do what you can to get moving, even if it is a small task, DO IT. You don’t have to run marathons but even getting in gear and walk some.
For those of you who say, I don’t know what I am talking about, maybe you are right but at 72, I still cook and clean (I have help every two weeks just to be transparent) but younger I did all of it myself while working full time (and for me full time was about 60 hours), and work full time and oversee a million dollar web system. I do my hair even cutting and styling. I do laundry and happily say my husband will do a load in a heart beat. I have written three novels and many inspirational quotes so I recommend exercising our minds as well. I don’t say this boastingly as I have battled Diabetes for almost 1o years and have it almost normal levels. I meant I wasn’t going to let it win. Am I skinny? I am laughing as I am typing. I am not in bad shape either. Do I get inspired? Yes, when I see 89 or 90 year olds still giving it their all, I want to do more.
I hope you give this message a few minutes thought. I hope you look at how you live your life in a new light. It is all decided in your mind and your body will follow. Enjoy life by saying to yourself, It is my life and I will take care of myself by controlling how I live it. Have fun!
(C) Copyright 2012-2021 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced to original location if known for credit reference.
As most of my friends know, I am a huge fan of Brenda Gantt’s and share her Cooking With Brenda Gantt’s posts often. She is the real deal, very down to earth and even with her now celebrity status, she is inviting to watch and I have truly learned some great tips from her. Not to steal any thunder from her, but I love to learn new ways, shortcuts, and ideas on how to prepare great food with simple instructions. This is how this blog topic has originated when I watched Brenda show us how to make a blooming onion her way.
I am not going to post Brenda’s video on the blooming onion as I feel you might miss a lot of good cooking videos so I invite you to follow her on Facebook, at Cooking with Brenda Gantt (look for the blue check for the authentic page).
She loves buttermilk drenching and used it in the video. She took her time and opened the onion to make sure the buttermilk coating got all the way down. She added seasonings and then placed the coated onion in flour and even taking more flour and pouring it into the petals of the onion. She has more patience than me was my thought at the time. Her blooming onion turned out fantastic and she took her now famous crunch test by biting it. Yes, total success for her.
Since I love a blooming onion and have paid a hefty price in restaurants, I decided to give a shot and I thought I followed her instructions to the letter. As you can see in the photo, mine looked okay but was not “Brenda crunchworthy” to the bottom of the onion.
Hey, it was good but I could do better for my taste. So here comes the Arline wants the crunch idea. I had seen onion petals in restaurants as a menu item so what if I cut all the way through and release the petals prior to coating them and that is what I did for me. It worked and set the stage for the blog topic which you will see shortly.
Once I had found what was easy for me and produced the quality and taste I prefer, I thought I would share it on one of the cooking/baking groups I am a member. This is the focus of the blog, not the success of the onion petals. A lot, and I mean a lot of members loved my idea (it wasn’t a new idea as others have made them before). So many said they would try it this way, but a lot and I mean a lot of others told me how I guess me and Brenda should have iced watered the whole onion which seems like a lot of work and I wasn’t comfortable adding a lot of water to an already full of liquid onion. I am not faulting anyone for their ideas and it was a good response post and that is what we bloggers look for, the reaction.
What was intriguing was all of the attention over an onion. A blooming onion or onion petals? It fascinated me with all the hoopla over a simple food. I realized something very impressive. Maybe we have gone overboard with all of the freedom of social media that we feel a need to respond to each post and or blog or a group. It may be healthy but I saw strong opinions, yes very firm opinions over an onion. This led me to a deeper thought.
If we took the same approach to homelessness, downtrodden and scarred people who even by their own fault fell into this trap of life, could we, would we solve this tragedy in our country?
If we took the same approach to education of our young children and teenagers to see what and how we can improve the quality of good education and not meet the demands of those who want to think for our children, could we, would we solve and move our educational goals higher?
I we took the same approach to caring for our elderly, who have given their time to take care of us when we were children and now left to live so frugally and sometimes even impoverished and left without proper medical care and treatment, could we, would we have a better outcome for their senior years?
I could go on and on listing all of the areas we can focus and insert input and solutions to the problems we, and others face. Onion, Spunion! Could it be possible to use the analogy of how so many responded to the Onion Saga, but never lift a finger or voice to the true causes of problems. I will give you a hint, It’s not due to an Onion so we can choose to make blooming onions or onion petals, or guess what, even Onion Rings. My point is there are many options to solve and recommend how to do the best activity to produce lasting and high quality outcomes.
(C) Copyright 2012-2021 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced if known for credit references.
Arline’s Hot Pockets from Smoked Ribs (can also use other smoked or grilled meats like chicken, turkey, and even leftover steak)
My tips for reinventing leftover meat: As delicious as smoked and/or grilled meats are, if you have a grill master that loves to have a big amount of meat, try to think of ways to present this delightful meat in many different, reinvented ways to have an easy new meal. It will seem entirely different but not taking up all your time in the kitchen and who doesn’t like food in a nicely wrapped package like a hot pocket.
Additional tip: My husband used the bbq sauce Sweet Baby Ray’s and I used some of the sauce I made for the shrimp salad which was over the top for these hot pockets. You can look back at the shrimp salad post for this recipe.
If I don’t get to post the next way to finish off those luscious ribs, and I say they are the best ribs he has made, I will give you a hint. Think of stew beef! I will take and cube the rest of the ribs, add some onions and some broth and seasonings and stew it for only a few minutes. Once I have the onions and rib meat flavors married, I will add two bags of Success Rice and allow them to combine and wallah, a quick new meal in minutes.
I would love to hear from you on how you reinvent a certain leftover. There are more ways to cook than to start all over again. You will change the mind of a person who makes the statement……I hate leftovers….to…..How are you going to reinvent this meal?
Until we Cook Again……Happy Meals……..Reinvention Queen…….Arline Miller
(C) Copyright 2012-2021 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration and Reinvention Queen with all rights and privileges reserved. Third Party Material is sourced, if known, to original location/author for credit reference.
Join me to learn how the vegetables and herbs make a delish meal and for those who are following to see what I will do to the leftovers if there are any, is I will add some flour and panko bread crumbs to stiffen cold squash and fry the fritters for a bright new taste. Nothing magical except the results.
As a cook I don’t like to waste food of any kind especially fresh vegetables so when my squash said “Cook Me” I listened. I didn’t take a lot of photos or videos as it is pretty cut and dry. I did a few things differently than my usual squash casserole and it was delicious. Here is the recipe and my notes on how to prepare it:
Arline’s Squash Casserole
6 medium fresh squash (cubed)
1 Vidalia or Sweet Onion (chopped)
Fresh herbs from garden crushed (dried parsley and Italian Seasoning
if fresh are not available) Dill, chives, flat parsley were my choices
1 stick of butter
2 TBS bacon drippings (Use vegetable oil or EVOO if you do not have bacon drippings)
¾ cup of Chicken Stock (or vegetable broth if you do not want chicken stock)
Place squash and onions in heated seasonings, drippings, and broth after it heats up.
Cook until tender (about 10 minutes) and sprinkle Paprika to taste with Salt and Black
Pepper. I added Garlic and Herb Seasoning and allowed the liquid to cook out. I left the leftover butter/seasoning liquid in pan after I slot spooned the squash/onion mixture into buttered casserole dish.
I mixed the following in a bowl and added to squash/onions in casserole dish after it was creamy:
1 cup mayo (Hellman)
½ cup sour cream
1 can cheddar cheese soup
2 sprinkles Onion powder
2 sprinkles Garlic Salt or Powder
1 beaten egg
4 oz Sharp Cheddar Cheese shredded
4 oz Mild Cheddar Cheese shredded
Salt and Pepper to taste
Sprinkle of Paprika
I crushed 2 short sleeves of saltine crackers and add Cheddar Cheese Sour Cream crushed potato chips into a bowl (other favorites will work). Pour 2/3 stick of melted butter and the leftover liquid from squash pan and stir until crackers/chips are covered. Place on top of the mixture in casserole dish.
Place in preheated oven 375 degrees for approximately 35-40 minutes. If browning too fast, check at 30 minutes and slide a piece of aluminum foil over the top and continue baking until bubbly.
Note from Reinvention Queen: When I cook, I cook volume amounts of meat and sometimes vegetables so I can rearrange the sides to freshen the meals. I found that if I change flavors it seems like a brand new meal. Until We Cook Again……Arline Miller
(C) Copyright 2012- 2021 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material, is sourced if original location is known for credit reference.
I can make a Pimento Cheese Sandwich from the deli type and enjoy it but nothing is better than a portion of homemade pimento cheese on a buttery cracker or some toasted bread splashed with the “real stuff” as I like to call it. I will walk you through my simple method of how I make this dish that if properly stored will last a long time in the refrigerator….but I never have to worry about it staying around very long. Tasty!
I am not creating a video until I make this dish and then I will include the way I make a grilled pimento cheese on Rye bread and White Bread in the Air Fryer Oven to demonstrate how crispy and crunchy it makes the sandwich.
Here are some tips I use while making the pimento cheese:
I use my small chopper and place any of my ingredients that require grating. It is a lot easier, less mess, and I can see how much I am creating in volume.
Pimentos can be chopped using this method in a few seconds and you avoid having large pieces in the pimento cheese mixture. The juice also blends into the mixture adding more flavor.
Using a variety of cheeses makes this dish an incredible blend and all of the cheese blend together creating a mixture of delightful flavors. Pimento cheese can be made with any one of these cheeses but combining all of them makes this cheese unique.
I use a combo of Hot Spicy Paprika and Smoked Paprika. Either will work but I love both so I half the flavors.
Pimento Cheese can be made with mayo or yogurt only, but for the best blend, use all three, sour cream, mayo, and yogurt and you will notice the difference.
Don’t forget the sugar, but if you are watching sugar, try Stevia or another sugar substitute. I use regular sugar and I love the small amount of sweetness with all of the seasonings but you can avoid putting any sugar into this dish.
I hope you will try my Pimento Cheese Recipe and send me feedback with any changes and/or additions you like in your Pimento Cheese. I have seen nuts, peppers, other cheeses, so I would love to hear from all of the fine cooks out there. Kitchens are great therapy sessions and stirring and mixing are good spurts of energy.
Happy Meals to You until We Cook Again…..Reinvention Queen, Arline Miller
(C) Copyright 2012-2021 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material, if source is known, will be stated for credit reference.