Welcome to Simple Fare, Fairly Simple. This is a place for me to post recipes of all kinds...along with other miscellaneous fodder from my so-called life here in the south. Who knows what you will find here. Could be anything from my husband...known as IT Guy...to my kids and beautiful grandbabies that are growing up way too fast right before my eyes. But...mostly this will be a place for food. I hope you'll see something you like and if you decide to try something from the list...leave me a comment and let me know!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Pretty-Close Mocha Frappachinos

Okay....did I find something you coffee frappachino lovers are going to enjoy. For those times when you can't make it to your favorite coffee house....or you're up late at night and need something to keep you going.....or your hair is in a tangled mess from a bad night's sleep and you're too embarrassed to be seen in public...or because you missed out at the big sale at Macy's....try this recipe for a good substitute.

Pretty-Close Mocha Frappachinos

For the coffee ice:
2 cups leftover coffee
3 tablespoons sugar

Combine coffee and sugar and freeze in an ice cube tray. (I don't have ice cube trays so I used my granddaughters Popsicle mold.)

For the chocolate syrup:
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 ounce milk chocolate, finely chopped (I've used chocolate chips...worked fine. I also used a milk chocolate candy bar...also worked great.)
1 1/2 teaspoons honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the frappes:
1 cup milk
Whipped cream, for topping


Make the coffee ice:
Stir the sugar into the coffee until dissolved. Pour into a 16-cube ice-cube tray and freeze until solid, about 3 hours or overnight.

Make the chocolate syrup:
Combine the sugar and cocoa powder in a saucepan and slowly whisk in 2/3 cup hot tap water. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, whisking, until the sugar dissolves, 3 to 5 minutes; do not boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate, honey and vanilla until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until cool. (I put the pan in my kitchen sink sitting in cold water and ice.)

Make the frappes:
Puree 8 coffee ice cubes, 1/2 cup milk, 1/3 to 1/2 cup chocolate syrup and 1 cup plain ice in a blender until smooth. Pour into 2 glasses, then repeat to make 2 more drinks. Top with whipped cream and more chocolate syrup.

For an extra special treat....I drizzled the inside of my glass with some of the chocolate syrup along with some caramel syrup. Yum!

Here's the stuff....
Chop, chop...

...stir, stir....

...add chocolate and stir, stir...

.....blend, blend....

...drink, drink!!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Easy Chicken 'n Dumplin's

I think there's nothing that tastes as good as homemade soup. This chicken soup is so easy when you start with a roasted chicken from the grocery store. You can use canned chicken if you want but I love the "chunkage" of chicken pieces. You can also cook a whole chicken yourself if you want to. Still good any way you do it!

1 2-pound roasted chicken
4 carrots – diced
4 celery stalks – diced
1 small onion – diced
2 32-ounce containers chicken stock
Olive Oil
1 teaspoon dried Oregano
1 teaspoon dried Rosemary
½ teaspoon Poultry Seasoning
½ teaspoon Marjoram
1 – 2 cans (10 count) refrigerator biscuits

In a large pot, cook onion, carrots and celery in Olive Oil until soft. Add chicken stock and seasonings. Let simmer while you bone the chicken. Give the chicken a rough chop and add to the pot. Let simmer for an hour or so. Open canned biscuits and cut them into quarters. Plop the quartered biscuits into the soup and let them cook for a few minutes until they are puffed up and cooked through…maybe 10 – 15 minutes. Serve!!

Here's whatcha need
Rough chopped...nothin' fancy.....
The casualty
Cookin' away
Little dumplin's
See how the biscuits puffed up? Can you smell the comfort?

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


I love my little house. It has a little kitchen that has taken some getting used to but overall it's very functional. One thing I was unhappy with when we moved into this house was the size of the pantry. I've never seen anything so small. I actually had to turn sideways to get in and get anything!  So...the wheels started turning and I came up with a solution that would include a new pantry and an uncluttered cabinet for my pots and pans.

Take a look and see how we solved the problem of a small pantry and an unhappy cook!

So to get an idea of what I had, take a look at this tiny door.  It's ridiculous.
This now is the home of my cookware. 

This was an unused coat closet on the other side of the kitchen.
Perfect pantry size!

We had to reroute some plumbing in the closet. 
Taking off the drywall on the kitchen side of the closet
The hole is complete....ready to put in the pantry!
Sliding in the pre-built pantry. Perfect fit!
All done!

Sunday, September 12, 2010


One of the things I love is dishes. I have lots. And lots. I enjoy having enough dishes that I can create different looks for different parties. I don't buy expensive dishes....a lot of them I get at TJMaxx and stores like that. I collect over a period of time until I think I have all I need or a store doesn't carry them anymore. One of my favorites that I've found over the years are these cute little yellow numbers. They are called "Cabbage Leaf" and they are made by a company in Portugal called Bordallo Pinero. I just love them. If you look hard enough you can find these in green....pink...purple....a pretty lime green color. Fun stuff!  I decided to stick with all yellow because it's so versatile. When my nephew got married,  the wedding colors were yellow and black. When I did his fiance's bridal luncheon....all I had to get were a couple of inexpensive black tablecloths and we had ourselves a party! I use them at thanksgiving, too. Love them. Love.

Here's my stash......

And here's my table all set with a yellow, gray and black theme. Ain't it purdy?

Friday, September 10, 2010


I've decided to add pictures here that are associated with cooking/kitchen/baking/eating but not necessarily a recipe. I've gone through a few years worth of pictures to find some tablescapes that I've done. Every now and then I'll add one that I think you might enjoy. Here's the first:

Thanksgiving tablescape

White Chocolate Cashew Popcorn

My mom gave me this recipe some time ago. Let me just say..it's pretty fantastic as far as a snack goes. Make a lot...make a little...but make it!! A little bit sweet....a little bit salty....a little bit crunchy and a little bit chewy....something for everyone!! It's great for parties. I made it for my granddaughter's birthday party and it was pretty popular.

White Chocolate Cashew Popcorn 

2 3-ounce bags microwave popcorn ~ popped
1 14-ounce bag white chocolate baking chips ~ melted
1 8-ounce container cashews ~ bits and pieces work great for this
1 cups Craisins

Pop popcorn according to package directions and take out all the old maids. Sprinkle cashews and Craisins on top of popcorn and toss to combine. Melt baking chips according to package directions and pour over popcorn mixture. Toss to coat well. Spread coated popcorn onto a lined, rimmed cookie sheet and let set until firm. Break into chunks….EAT!!

Here's everything you need to make this addicting little snack.
The popcorn all popped...with all the duds removed. Only the fluffies left. 
A sprinkling of Craisins and cashews
The popcorn and Craisins and cashews all mixed together with the melted white chocolate
All ready to eat!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Grilled Pimento Cheese Sandwiches

We went to an open house at the mayor's house (I know....don't ask me what I was doing there...it was surreal) the other day and one of the things that was served was this delicious little tidbit. I think I hovered around the buffet a lot longer than I should have because by the time we left, I had cheese dripping from my chin and a glazed look in my eyes. I was getting some very strange looks. Anyway...they were just regular sandwiches that the caterer cut into four strips then served on a big platter. I told myself...as my husband was dragging me away...that I would feature them on SFFS. As I was making them today...I made two whole sandwiches and ate BOTH of them. I'm so bad. Regardless...here's my version of what was served at the party...like it or not. But I hope you do.

Grilled Cheese Pimento Sandwiches

16 ounces sharp cheddar cheese – grated
8 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese – grated
1 4-ounce jar diced pimentos
1 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 – 2 teaspoons Cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon salt
Good white bread
Butter for slathering

Heat a grill pan on medium heat while preparing the other ingredients.

In a large bowl, combine cheeses, pimentos, mayo, Worcestershire sauce, Cayenne pepper and salt. Butter one side of each piece of bread then spread about a 1/4 cup of the pimento cheese mixture on one unbuttered side of the bread. Add the remaining bread on top…buttered side up….then grill for a couple of minutes on each side….until light golden brown. Remove from pan onto a plate and let sit for about 5 minutes until cool and cheese is no longer runny. To serve as appetizers, slice sandwiches into 4 strips and place on a platter.

                                             Our little friends....
                   Please grate your own cheese. Please, please, pretty please.
                                                 Drain the pimentos...

                                          All ingredients together in the bowl....
                                            Getting ready to grill....

                                             Are you feelin' the love, yet?
                                                  How 'bout now?