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!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

I think I've mentioned on here once or twice how much we love Mexican food. One of our most favorite places to go when we lived in California was Rubio's. They had YUMMY pork carnitas!! That was my standard order every time. So when my mom gave me a pork butt the other day I knew right away what I would be doing with it. I added a chipotle paste to the roast as it cooked, but if you don't like the heat, just leave it off. Makes it good...I gotta say.

Chipotle Pork Carnitas 
in the Crock Pot

1 11/2 - 2 pound pork butt (boneless)
2 Chipotle peppers
Salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon water

Place roast in the crock pot, add water and season with salt, pepper and cumin.

In a food processor pulse the chipotle peppers with 1 tablespoon of water until blended. Spread chipotle paste on top of the roast.

Turn the crock pot on high and let it go for 5 - 6 hours. Then with two forks, shred the meat into thick chunks and turn the temp down to low and cook for an additional hour or two.

Serve with warmed corn tortillas, salsa, chopped onion, chopped fresh cilantro, chopped avocado and queso fresco cheese (the crumbly kind you get in restaurants).

Here's what you need to get the carnitas going.

Put the roast in the crock pot then 
add the water and seasonings. 
Then put the chipotle paste on top of the roast.

Let it cook on high for a few hours 
then shred the meat and let it cook on 
low for another two hours or so.

Here's all the goodies that 
go with these yummy carnitas!

SO good!!!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Okay...so IT Guy wasn't a big fan of this cake...I'll tell you that up front. The reason? He's doesn't like peanut butter! Can you imagine? I don't get that. This cake WAS good..I don't care WHAT he says! So, SO good! I loved the frosting/filling. Make sure you keep this cake in the fridge. You can make it layered or in a 9x13 inch pan. It's delish!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake

1 box Devil's Food cake mix
1 8 ounce container Cool whip
1 large box vanilla instant pudding
1 1/4 cups milk
1/2 cup peanut butter
Mini Reese's peanut Butter cups
Chocolate Ice cream Topping for drizzling (optional)

In a medium bowl, combine pudding mix and milk. Whisk until well combined.

Add peanut butter and mix until well blended.

Gently fold in Cool Whip. Cover and place in the fridge for an hour or so.

Prepare cake as directed on box using two 9-inch pans or one 9 x 13 inch pan.

Bake cake and allow to come to room temperature.

Place one cake layer on a serving platter and top with some of the peanut butter frosting. (Or frost cake in 9x13 pan.)

Top with remaining layer and frost cake.

Sprinkle with peanut butter cups and drizzle with chocolate topping.

Store in the fridge.

Here's all you need. Bake the cake 
according to the box directions.

Mix the pudding with the milk. 
Then stir in the peanut butter.

Then add the Cool Whip.

Pop it in the fridge for a while to let it firm up.

Then frost your baked and cooled cake.

Add the mini peanut butter cups. 
I also drizzled some ice cream 
fudge topping that I had warmed 
a teeny bit all over the top.

So so good!!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Chocolate Dipped Pretzels

With the holidays coming up, I thought I'd give you guys a quick tutorial on how to dip rod pretzels. Actually they're very easy and a really fun and inexpensive gift or treat to take a cookie exchange. I made these the other day and they went pretty fast. Make 'em for Halloween...Christmas....any holiday or party! Yay for easy treats!!

Chocolate Dipped Pretzels

1 10-ounce bag rod pretzels
1 14-ounce bag Candy Melts (found at crafts store or Walmart)
Vegetable oil
Assorted sprinkles

In a medium sized microwave-safe bowl, melt the Candy Melts for two minutes, stirring at 30 second intervals.

Stir in 2 - 3 tablespoons of oil to thin out the candy. This will make dipping the rods easier.

Transfer the melted candy to a tall, skinny container. I used a drinking glass.

Holding the pretzel at one end, dip the other end into the melted candy, as far as you want. I only went half way.

Immediately spoon some sprinkles over the chocolate and set aside to cool and harden. I placed mine on some parchment paper.

Repeat with all the pretzels.

Here's what you need. Oops..looks like I forgot the oil. But don't YOU forget it. It'll make dipping so much easier! 
Here's what you need. Oops..looks 
like I forgot the oil. But don't YOU 
forget it. It'll make dipping so much easier!

Melt your chocolate then stir in the oil. 
Melt your chocolate then stir in the oil.

Transfer the chocolate to a tall container. 
Transfer the chocolate to a tall container.

Then dip! Shake off any large amounts of excess chocolate. 
Then dip! Shake off any large 
amounts of excess chocolate.

Immediately add the sprinkles. 
Immediately add the sprinkles.

See how cute? Set aside to cool and allow the chocolate to harden. 
See how cute? Set aside to cool 
and allow the chocolate to harden.

You can wrap them in little plastic bags designed just for these. I've seen those at Joann's. Or put them in boxes to give away. Fun and yummy! 
You can wrap them in little 
plastic bags designed just for these.
I've seen those at Joann's. 
Or put them in boxes to give away. 
Fun and yummy!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Here's a fun little treat that would be great to go with breakfast or for a late night snack. I'm not a big banana lover on their own, but I certainly don't mind when it's mixed into things like this. 
Very yummy!

Banana Fritters

2 ripe bananas
2 tablespoons milk
2 eggs
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1 cup  flour
4 tablespoons  sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 pinch ground nutmeg
oil for frying
Powdered sugar for dusting

In a large bowl, mash the bananas. Mix in milk, eggs and butter until smooth.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir dry ingredients into wet mixture. Add 1/2 cup of mini chocolate chips at this point, if desired.

Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pan to medium  - medium high. Drop batter by spoonfuls into hot oil, and cook, turning once, until browned, 2 to 8 minutes.

Drain on paper towels and dust with confectioners' sugar.

Okay...let's do this.

Mash the bananas.

Then add the milk, eggs and melted butter.

Combine the dry ingredients.

Then add the dry to the wet.

Mix well. At this point you can add about 
1/2 cup of mini chocolate chips. Or not. Your call.

Drop by small scoopfuls to oil that's been heated to medium heat. That's between a 6 and 7 on my stovetop. Cook until golden brown on both sides. Drain on paper towel and sprinkle with lots of powdered sugar.

Soooo tasty!!!

Monday, October 22, 2012

As always, I'm forever on the hunt for easy desserts. This one is about as easy as you can get....but the flavor factor is WAY high! We love cinnamon rolls around here and I enjoy making them when I have time. But I don't always have the time. So this quick little gem couldn't be better. It only makes one 9-inch pan sized cake...and that's perfect for us. This can be made for a brunch or like we did....dessert. And breakfast the next day. 
And maybe a snack.

Cinnamon Roll Coffee Cake

1 egg
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup milk
1 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
Dash of salt
2 tablespoons oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9" cake pan with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, mix together the egg, sugar, flour, baking powder and salt. After mixture has come together, beat in the oil.

Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Top with Cinnamon Roll Topping (recipe follows)

Let's go!

Mix everything for the cake in a bowl
...EXCEPT the oil.

After it's all mixed, add the oil and beat well.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

Cinnamon Roll Topping

1/2 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 stick butter ~ softened

Combine ingredients in a small bowl and sprinkle over cake batter.

Bake for 20 - 30 minutes until done.

Spread with powdered sugar glaze. (recipe follows)

Here's the stuff for the cinnamon topping.

Mix the ingredients in a small bowl.

Then drop small amounts all over the batter.

Bake!!! See all the nooks and crannies? 
That's a GOOD thing. Just you wait and see!

Powdered Sugar Glaze

1/4 stick butter ~ softened
1 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Splash of milk

In a mixing bowl, cream butter with powdered sugar and vanilla. Add enough milk to make a thick, pourable glaze.

Drizzle over baked cake.

Here's the stuff for the glaze.

Mix it all in a small bowl.

You want it nice and smooth.

Then pour the glaze over the warm cake. 
Make sure you get the glaze into all those 
nooks and crannies so it melts down into the cake.

Allow the cake to cool for a bit then cut 
yourself a nice slice, go hide from your kids...and eat!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

After a busy day there's nothing better than something easy for dinner. And these ribs match that criteria. You could do this with chicken just as easily but we really enjoyed the boneless country style ribs. Easy to fix....easy clean-up...it doesn't get any...well, easier!!

Oven Cajun Ribs

1 1/2 to 2 pounds boneless country-style ribs
3 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 cup barbecue sauce

Wash ribs and pat dry. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a shallow baking pan with foil.

Combine Cajun seasoning, garlic powder and onion powder. Rub mixture all over the ribs. 

Arrange ribs on the foil. Cover with another piece of foil and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until very tender. Uncover and brush with barbecue sauce; bake uncovered for about 15 minutes longer, or broil for about 5 minutes.

Here's all you need.

Combine the cajun seasoning, 
the garlic powder and the onion powder.

Rub the seasoning mixture all over the ribs. 
Place the ribs on a foil lined pan. 
Cover and bake.

After an hour or so, remove the top foil 
and brush some BBQ sauce over the ribs. 
Cook an additional 15 minutes.

Broil on high the last 5 minutes 
to caramelize the BBQ sauce. Serve and enjoy!