Sunday, August 30, 2009


What Really Bugs Me...

About a year ago, my oldest boy handed me a print out of recipes that he received while taking home economics. The recipes where all about how to cook bugs, grubs, worms and even included nutritional values. I'm pretty open minded and I enjoy watching Bizarre Foods on the Travel Channel as well as the next person, but admittedly I put that print out under a stack of papers and completely forgot about it. That is until I came across some boxes of Crick-Ettes (the other Green Meat) Sour Cream and Onion at a convenience store located within an Indian Casino just outside of San Diego. They were pretty pricey at $1.99 per box of roughly 12 crickets, but hey- they've got to pay someone to run around at catch them, don't they? I grabbed three boxes and while checking out, I gleefully mentioned how funny it will be to see the look on my children's faces, when the cashier said he found them quite delicious and had just polished off a couple boxes.

When I arrived home, I called out to the kids that I had a "treat" for them and placed the box in their hands. Expecting to hear "EEWW" and "GROSS", I was surprised with their excitement in opening the boxes. They completely gobbled them up and not to be a sissy, I tried one, too. They tasted like a sunflower seed shell or a small dried leaf with flavoring. It really wasn't that bad. Though, the one thing that really bugs me is when you get cricket stuck in your teeth!

HOTLix Grover Beach, CA 93433
Phone (805) 473-0596

"To me a lush carpet of pine needles or spongy grass is more welcome than the most luxurious Persian rug."-Helen Keller

Monday, August 24, 2009

Invitation to view tex-mex's Picasa Web Album - 22 Dutch Ovens...................

Tex-Mex was kind enough to send more pictures.
Click the link below!
Message from Tex-Mex:
Dian caters a wedding of 200, pulled pork, cheese potatos,
and cherry,apple, and peach cobblers..................
I got there in time to help serve and clean up, as I was
catering a golf tournament of 150 earlier in the day, in Burley.
22 Dutch Ovens...................
Aug 22, 2009
by tex-mex

Friday, August 21, 2009

There's No Place Like Home!

It's good to be home now. It's interesting that no matter where we wander, the best place on Earth is the place we call home...

Looking at my entries for the blog and noticed in August there where only 9! Not for long, while on the road I've gathered so much good stuff to share, that I'm just trying to figure out where to start!

Monday, August 17, 2009

No-Boil Veggie Lasagna!

You'd never guess how easy this is to make! Hot and cheesy, "No-Boil Lasagna"!


8 oz. Lasagna Ribbons

15 oz. Ricotta Cheese

2 Eggs Slightly Beaten

30 oz. jar of Spaghetti Sauce

1 Tablespoon Italian Seasoning

1 Package Frozen Chopped Spinach (thawed)

1 1/2 Cups Chopped Zucchini

1 Cup Parmesan

2 Cups Mozzarella Cheese

1/4 Cup Water


Preheat Oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl combine Ricotta Cheese, 1 Cup Mozzarella Cheese, 1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese, Eggs, Italian Seasoning, Spinach and Zucchini.

In another bowl, mix Spaghetti Sauce and Water.

In a 9x 13 inch glass baking pan, spread evenly 1 1/2 cups Sauce, place 1/3 Dry Lasagna Ribbons over Sauce, then spread your Ricotta Filling over the mixture, top with 1 1/3 cup of sauce and repeat layering- until the last layer is the Lasagna Ribbons. Top with remaining Sauce, Mozzarella, Parmesan and a sprinkle of Italian Seasoning.

Cover tightly with non-stick (or Pam sprayed) Tin-Foil and bake for 45-50 minutes, or until fork tender.

Let it rest for 10 minutes and dig in!


**Recipe and Photo courtesy of "Sunshine, CA"

Thank You, Sunshine!

Invitation to view tex-mex's Picasa Web Album- Cassia County Fair 2009

To view photos of the 2009 Cassia County Fair Dutch Oven Cook Off please click the links below!

Thank you Tex-Mex for sending these awesome pictures, I so appreciate it and they are already making my mouth water!

You are invited to view tex-mex's photo album: Cassia County Fair 2009
Cassia County Fair 2009
Aug 15, 2009
by tex-mex
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Friday, August 14, 2009

Can't Wait To Come Home!

I've been away for a bit traveling across the USA gathering up lots of good info on restaurants and products that I can't wait to share with you! Will be back to River-Rose very soon!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Local Dutch Oven Events!

Omar Alvarez is a Southern Idaho Dutch Oven gem! His involvment with competition Dutch Oven cooking in additiona to his barbeque team "Lonestar BBQ", consisting of himself, Matt Pelton and Robert Murphy lends him unique experience within the culinary world. This month, Mr. Alvarez is holding a couple events that any Mini-Cassia foodie would love:

SATURDAY, AUGUST 8th, 11: 00 A.M.


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

"Food Review" Village of Trees RV Resort BBQ Cook-Off!

I received an invitation to be a judge at the 2nd Annual Village of Trees RV Resort’s Barbeque Cook-Off, and prior to the event a meeting was held by four Kansas City Barbeque Society certified judges with the purpose of educating us on the proper way to judge entries. The main points of the meeting were based on the realization that all of the contestants have spent countless hours and money refining their grilling skills for this very moment. The utmost respect to sampling all dishes must be given, therefore, there are rules. No talking while sampling the dishes. Always clean your palette before every sampling and never judge one dish from another, as each item must stand on its own merit. With that, one begins to see that there is more to grilling than meet the eye. The real action is in the preparation; and for some participants, the preparation has been occurring for years. Secrets, techniques and recipes handed down by generations, refined into an art form. One of the judges explained that refining his own technique has become a way of life for him and his family. When one thinks BBQ they often think of the cooking technique- “low and slow” which this judge says explains the very essence of why it is so enjoyable. Barbeque cannot be rushed and the time spent creating the smoky smell that lingers in the air causes mouthwatering anticipation of sharing a great meal, cooked from the grill…low and slow.
Village of Trees RV Resort- Travel Stop 216274 Highway 25, Declo
Winter Hours: 7 a.m.- 9 p.m./ Summer Hours: 6 a.m.-10 p.m.
Take out: 654-2133
Chicken, Pulled Pork, Pork Ribs and Brisket are judged upon appearance, taste, and texture. It is a blind tasting, which means that the judges do not know who cooked what item. In all categories there were entries that looked as though they were taken right out of a glossy picture from Bon Appetit magazine. It was obvious that much care had been taken into the consideration of plating and when its appearance makes one want to just dive in, that’s when they receive the highest score which is a 9. In taste, there are many variations from smoky, spicy, tangy, and sweet to citrus. For my palette, it is most pleasing when one taste does not overwhelm another. There were a few entries that made you want to finish off the whole item, plus lick your fingers, and when that occurred they received the highest score. There were also a few items that had such overwhelming taste that it overpowered the flavor of the meat itself and when that occurred it resulted in a lower score. Finally is texture, which is actually quite important in barbecue. With texture, one can tell if an item has been cooked too long or not long enough. For instance, in the category of ribs we often hear the phrase “fall off the bone tender”. This is actually not something one should strive to achieve and indicates that the item is overcooked. When biting into a pork rib, no more than the bite itself should come clean off the bone and when the bone is exposed to air, the juices should immediately oxidize. This indicates a perfectly cooked rib. When a combination of perfect appearance, taste, and texture occurs in one item, it’s pure magic! The great part about this event is that it was free to the public and if you wanted to do your own taste test, the cost was only $2 per plate. If you missed it this year, mark your calendars for the 3rd Annual Village of Trees Barbeque Cook-Off on July 30 & 31st of next year.

(208) 678-6643



1st Place -R&R BBQ
2nd Place - Utah Smoke
3rd Place - HQO

1st Place - PackerBacker BBQ
2nd Place - Crazy Cajun
3rd Place - Utah Smoke

1st Place - PackerBacker BBQ
2nd Place - HQO
3rd Place - Utah Smoke

1st Place - R&R BBQ
2nd Place - Skinny Boys BBQ
3rd Place - LoneStar BBQ

274 Highway 25
Declo, ID 83323
Phone: 208-654-2133
Fax: 208-654-9550

**Photos courtesy of Omar Alvarez**

A Dutch Oven, Two Guys,and A Cookbook!

Meet the world of Dutch Oven along with Matt Pelton and Omar Alvarez. Matt is the author of From Mountaintop To Tabletop, which is no small feat (hence the title). While Mr. Alvarez is literally the World Champion in Dutch Oven Competition 2008. In Mr. Alavarez' own words..."Dian Mayfield & myself , have been competing together for 5 years. We had never cooked in a dutch Oven until 2005, in 2007 we placed fourth place at the World's, then in 2008 we won it all"

This is Matt Pelton's third book The Cast Iron Chef. Looking through the book, the evolution of the journey completely amazes me. The book begins with the science of Dutch Oven Cooking and advances to the balance between simple and complex. A wide array of dishes to experiment with- from "A Basic Roast" to "Etife". C'mon now, you know you want to cook this stuff without electricity. If you desire to be schooled on Cast Iron, please check out this book!

"If the doors of perception were cleansed; everything would appear as it is-infinite"
-William Blake

Saturday, August 1, 2009