dessert · Fourth of July · Main dish. · summertime

Fourth of July Favorite Foods

With Fourth of July coming up next weekend,  I thought I’d pull some of my favorite menu items from my blog and make a few suggestions for your cookout, just in case you’re looking for some new ideas!

Let’s start with the main course:

You can’t beat a hamburger on the grill, and this Herb and Cheese Stuffed Burger is one of the best!  It takes the term “Cheeseburger” to a whole new level!  The cheese is inside the burger, and it’s not just some cheese-flavored slab, this is an herb cream cheese, friends!

Herb & Cheese Stuffed Burgers

Ingredients
1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
3 teaspoons Dijon mustard, divided
2 green onions, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons dry bread crumbs
2 tablespoons ketchup
1/2 teaspoon salt
I1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
1/4 teaspoon dried sage leaves
1 pound lean ground beef (90% lean)
4 rolls, split

Directions
In a small bowl, combine the cheddar cheese, cream cheese, parsley and 1 teaspoon mustard; set aside.
In another bowl, combine the onions, bread crumbs, ketchup, salt, rosemary, sage and remaining mustard. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well.
Shape into eight thin patties. Spoon cheese mixture onto center of four patties; top with remaining patties and press edges firmly to seal.
Grill burgers, covered, over medium heat or broil 4 in. from heat for 5-7 minutes on each side or until a meat thermometer reads 160° and juices run clear. Serve on rolls with lettuce and tomato if desired. Yield: 4 servings.
Lettuce leaves and tomato slices, optional

If you’re going to grill steaks, use a great marinade to make them even more flavorful!  Here’s my go-to recipe:

Teriyaki Sauce

1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup salad oil
2 tbl molasses
2 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp dry mustard
3 cloves, garlic, minced

Mix well, then marinate meat at least one hour.

Oh, and if you need a side for either the burgers or the steak, the Onion Rings pictured above are some of the best!

Golden Onion Rings
Combine 1 cup plus 2 tbl all purpose flour, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 slightly beaten egg, 1 cup milk, and 2 tbl salad oil. Beat together just till dry ingredients are well moistened. Coat onion rings with batter. (I prefer a vidalia onion) Fry a few at a time in deep hot oil (375 degrees), stirring once to separate rings. when onions are golden, drain on paper towels. Just before serving, sprinkle with salt.

Now, let’s finish with a refreshing dessert!

Strawberry Pizza
Ingredients

Crust:
1 C flour
1/4 C powdered sugar
1/2 C butter

Filling:
1 (8 oz.) cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 C granulated sugar
1/4 tsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice

Topping;
1 C fresh strawberries, mashed
4 Tbsp. granulated sugar
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
8 – 10 strawberries sliced.
Instructions

Crust:
In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar and butter.
Form into a ball with hands and press into a 14 inch ungreased pizza pan (I used my Pampered Chef pizza stone) I floured my fingertips to keep it from sticking and I pressed it out with my hands.
Bake at 325 degrees for 15 minutes. Cool.

Filling:
In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, vanilla, sugar and lemon juice.
Spread on cooled crust.
Topping:
In a saucepan over medium heat, combine strawberries, sugar and cornstarch.
Simmer until thick and glossy. Cool.

Spread on top of cream cheese filling.  Cut fresh strawberries crosswise to make rounds that resemble pepperoni, place on pizza and serve.

I hope that inspires you to plan ahead for a fun and delicious 4th Of July menu!  

Anyone have a traditional recipe that you always fix for your family cook-outs?

Happy Independence Day!

Refreshment · summertime

Blessings In This Season

I’m sitting on the front porch in my rocking chair on this 54 degree morning.  I watched the sun pop up over the hill across the road.  The dew on the grass looks like silver glitter on green paper.  Morning sounds of people making their way to work and children piling onto  buses interrupt, but don’t stop the country’s slow awakening to a new day.

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Not only is this a new day, I also realize that we’re moving into a new season as August is coming to a seemingly fast halt.  How thankful I am for the summer season fading behind us.  It’s been full of blessings ~

  • Days at the ocean’s shores with sandy toes, foaming waves, bike rides on beautiful paths and breath-taking sunrises.
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  • Cookouts, ice cream cones, meals on the patio, while the sun melted between the hills behind us.
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  • Precious times with our twin grandsons included countless wagon rides, splashes in the the inflatable pool, watering cans, held by tiny hands sloshing their contents onto thirsty tomato plants and flowers. I remember little fingers reaching out to pluck off the ripened fruit from the vines, chalk drawings on concrete, Frisbee tosses, and cool streams from the water hose that trickled down refreshing sweaty heads.
  • Plenty of guests have entered our doors and filled our rooms and yard with laughter and with appetites for both good food and the nourishment from God’s Word.  Heads have bowed together in prayer while we stopped conversation with one another to talk and worship the God of our lives.
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I acknowledge His hand in this season of the year and  in the this season of my life.  He is so very good and so very generous.  May this season bring about people who are my “letter of commendation” written in my heart only if being with me helps move them to Christ.  What is the use of it all if that isn’t true?  It would be a season wasted.

Oh Lord, please use my life.  Use this new season we are approaching for Your glory.

May the Lord richly bless you as you use your days for His glory in this new season that is approaching ` and in each season of your life!

denise a

 

Dinner · summertime

Make One Sandwich – Feed the Whole Family

Do you remember Dagwood and his infamous sandwiches?

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They were stacked a mile high and secured with a toothpick.  Ever since his infamous concoctions, Americans have packed bread with all kinds of meats and cheeses in similar fashion.

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Another sandwich closely linked to it is the Sub Sandwich.  Instead of being piled high, it’s stuffed into a long loaf of bread.  One long loaf easily feeds a family!

Last night at church we had a sandwich fellowship time and I decided to make a sub sandwich, inspired by an old Kraft Cookbook of mine.  I am calling mine the Grand Slam Sub Sandwich in honor of it being summer, and also a real “hit” as a crowd pleaser!  Continue reading “Make One Sandwich – Feed the Whole Family”

Fast dessert · Outside decor · summertime · Sunday Dinner

Favorite Summer Happenings

I am enjoying summer SO much!  How thankful I am for this season that God planned as we read in Genesis 8:22 ~

While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.

I thought I’d share some photos with you from this week that share my love for what is happening so far this summer!

My hydrangeas are blooming!  I also love my Popcorn Roses! That means I get to make little informal bouquets for the table.  These are my favorite kinds of centerpieces!

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Patio Dining! This picture was from Sunday dinner.  I love having guests over and especially when we get to sit outside and enjoy the summer day and the view.  How precious to invite friends over and share the Word together and end our time in prayer for one another!

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Summer vegetables are coming up in my sweet friend’s garden and they graciously shared with us!  How beautiful are these radishes and beets?!

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Our Sunday dinner was Herbed Chicken Breasts, Potato Salad, Corn Casserole and Southern Green Beans.  I also fixed individual Berry Cobblers with ice cream for dessert!

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I’ll end with an adorable picture of my sweet Liza Jane.  She just seems to get more beautiful and lovable as the years pass!

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What has been your favorite part of summer so far?

I’ve shared with you about the radio broadcasts that I’ve been asked to record.  This is way out of my comfort zone, but I am just obeying God’s leading in each step!  The recordings are now available in podcast form at our church’s website.  That means that you don’t have to catch it only at the time it airs, but can listen at any time!  To listen to the podcasts, All you need to do is click here and then look across the top bar for “Refresh Her Podcasts.” Scroll down and you will see each podcast date and the title.  Click and listen!

I pray your weekend is refreshing as you go to a Bible believing/preaching church! Go with a hungry heart, a journal, a song in your heart and go looking to be a blessing!

denise a