May 31, 2013


"Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability." 
 ~Sam Keen

Summertime brings with itself unhurried mornings,
restful afternoons, and leisurely evenings.....

 Crockpots are a "must have" during the summer months! There are more important things to spending lazy afternoons daydreaming.....
I would imagine most people have prepared Golfer's Chicken before. Mother always made this during the summer. It was one of our most requested suppers....especially after spending the day out at Lake Cavalier boating and water skiing. Dinner was ready when we arrived home...tired and sunburned!

4 pounds chicken boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs
1 envelope onion soup mix
1 bottle (12 ounce size) Russian salad dressing
8 ounces apricot jam

Place chicken in your crockpot. Combine remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl and pour over the chicken. Cover the crockpot and cook on low for 6-8 hours.  Serve with rice and a fresh vegetable, such as broccoli!

May 30, 2013


Remember when you were a kid in summer?
The days seemed endless and all you had to do was play and have fun.

I adore these pictures of Luke and his little friend, Izzy!
Izzy has been featured on Estelle's before and is Atlanta born and bred!
She is the cutest Georgia Peach you will ever find! This was a play date at a local farm in Atlanta, which allowed children to roam, pet the farm animals and pretend they were country kids for a day!

Luke leads the way as they fun through the fields....
little one trying to keep up as best she can!

Don't you wonder what she was trying to ask Luke?
 Or better yet, what Luke was trying to explain to her!

Summer months, when we would go to The Jackson Farmer's Market with Mother, we always came home with fresh rhubarb. I am constantly amazed at the number of people I run into who have never heard of rhubarb or have never tasted fresh rhubarb! Oh darlings....please don't hesitate. It is one of life's greatest offerings! This little recipe is perfectly suited for a summer dessert!
4 to 5 cups of cubed fresh rhubarb
1 cup sugar
1 (3- oz) package of strawberry Jello
1 white cake mix
1 1/4 cup water
1/2 cup chilled butter, cut into pieces


Put ingredients in a buttered 9" x 13" baking dish in even layers in the order that they are given - do not mix. Cut the butter into slices spread out over the top of the cake mix. Bake in a 350° F. oven for 1 hour. Delicious served warm!

This is Mother's recipe for rhubarb sauce. She would serve this in Grandmother's cut glass crystal bowl and what an elegant presentation this made. I have shared it with many friends, and everyone agrees: Follow the recipe to a T and you will have the most delicious rhubarb sauce you have ever tasted.

2 cups water
2 scant cups sugar
3 pounds rhubarb cut into 1-inch pieces

Make a syrup with the water and sugar. Boil together a few minutes.Add rhubarb to syrup when it starts boiling in center. Watch closely and let boil just 1 minute.Now here is the trick that makes ordinary rhubarb sauce a Sauce Deluxe: Pour into a bowl or pan with a tight cover. Leave tightly covered until cold, and you will find a sauce very different from any you have ever eaten.


May 29, 2013


Memorial Day in Atlanta was a festive gathering and a perfect weekend for a Cajun crawfish boil!
The Divine Miss M and her hubby hosted friends on their newly completed deck and welcomed summer with delicious food, great Cajun soundtracks, along with ice cold wine and lime-o-rita's!

Even the smallest party can be quite an undertaking when you are setting the scene to ensure the look, feel and vibe of the party is fun and festive. I love how Miss M chose bright pops of summer colors! She decided on sunny yellow- golds and vibrant reds! The melamine plates and green acrylic stemmed goblets were found at Target! need to worry about broken china and glassware on the deck. The red placemats were found at Pier One and the tablecloth was bought from Kohl's! I love the mix of patterns on the paper napkins too! The fresh flowers were purchased at the grocery floral department! The colors are perfect for a Cajun summer theme!

I wish we could have been there! Looks just beautiful M!

Now that's ALOT of crawfish! Not to worry, if crawfish is not to your liking, there was plenty of jumbo spicy shrimp also!

Grandson Luke has decided that he likes hot and he likes spicy...demonstrating how to properly eat crawfish!

What a beautiful grouping of hanging baskets.
I hear the birds find this the perfect spot for nest building!
One of the dessert offerings was this delicious German Chocolate Cake....
I hear it received rave reviews!

2 1/4 C sifted Cake Flour 
1 t. baking soda
1 t. salt
2 sticks butter, softened
4 oz Sweet (German) Baking Chocolate
1/2 C boiling water
1 C Sour Cream
1 1/2 t. vanilla 
 2 C sugar, divided 1 3/4 C and 1/4 C
 4 large eggs, yolks and whites separated
 1/4 t. cream of tartar
Pre-heat oven to 350 F. Butter 3 round cake pans and dust with cocoa powder to keep the cakes from sticking. Sift your cake flour, measure out 2 1/4 C and then sift together the cake flour, baking soda and salt (set aside)
Finely chop your chocolate and separate your eggs, while your water is heating up to boiling.
Combine the chocolate shavings and water until it’s melted and smooth (set aside)
In a small bowl mix together sour cream and vanilla.
In a large bowl beat 2 sticks butter until creamy.
Slowly add in 1 3/4 C sugar.
Beat in 4 egg yolks, 1 at a time .
Add the melted chocolate and beat just until blended.
Add the flour mixture and Sour Cream mixture in alternating batches. 3 parts flour to 1 part Sour Cream. Beating each addition until fully incorporated. Use a spatula to scoop the sides and bottom, if needed.
In another large bowl beat 4 egg whites with 1/4 tsp cream of tartar, beat until soft peaks form.
Beat on high speed and add in 1/4 C sugar. Beat until stiff.
Gently fold into the batter and then pour into the 3 buttered and dusted pans. Let the pans settle before baking them.
Bake for 25 minutes or until the cake bounces back when lightly pressed in the center with your finger.
Let cool for 10 minutes in pans, remove to wire racks to finish cooling.
Smooth Coconut Pecan Frosting over each layer and build up and top with Coconut Pecan Frosting .

  The Frosting
1 (12 ounce) can evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter
4 egg yolks, slightly beaten
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 (7 ounce) package shredded coconut (about 2-2/3 cups)
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans

Blend milk, sugar, butter, egg yolks and vanilla in large saucepan.
Stirring constantly, cook on medium heat 12 minutes or until thickened and golden brown.
Remove from heat.
Stir in coconut and pecans.
Cool to room temperature and of spreading consistency.
Spread the coconut-pecan between each of the layers, and then over top of the cake.

May 28, 2013


Celebrate Summer

One of my all time favorite places to shop for food and gifts is Market Street.
We often browse the isles for the most beautiful produce, bakery items and deli casseroles. The master chef at Market Street, Chris Wilson,  shared this Peach Crumble recipe with us this past weekend. So that's the little secret for this delicious taste.....the snickerdoodles and ginger snaps! Why didn't I think of that? Oh yes, and the little twist of adding Mascarpone to the whipping cream....oh genius!

8 cups of fresh peaches, peeled and diced
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 t. cinnamon
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 T. sugar
1/4 cup rolled oats
12 ounces of combined snickerdoodle and ginger snap cookies
2 T. flour
1 cup Mascarpone Cream
1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare 8 individual ramekins with cooking spray. Peel and dice fresh peaches. In a mixing bowl, combine the peaches with 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 t. cinnamon and set aside.

For the crumb topping, place 6 ounces of snickerdoodle cookies and 6 ounces of ginger snaps in a plastic bag. Seal the bag and then crush the cookies into crumbs with a rolling pin, Take the cookie crumbs and place in a mixing bowl. Add the softened butter, sugar, oats and flour and combine with your hands until you have a crumble.

Place the peaches into the ramekins and top with the crumble mixture. Bake at 375 degrees F. and bake on a cookie sheet for 20-30 minutes. This heavenly scent will make you want to try one of these crumbles immediately......but wait!

For the Mascarpone cream, whip with heavy whipping cream in a cold, deep mixing bowl until soft peaks form. Add the mascarpone cream and sugar and continue whipping until you have stiff peaks.

Top the crumble with a dollop of the Mascarpone cream when ready to serve!

May 27, 2013


Hot, steamy, muggy, cloudy, rainy, breezy....all of this describes our Texas weather the past few weeks. Yet, with all of this, the pool water is still too cold. However, that has not prevented us from spending times outdoors grilling up some wonderful dinners! Grilling can be quick and easy and need not be extravagant, followed by a lot of kitchen clean-up. Don't you just love old time favorites with a little twist? This one really caught my attention with the addition of Meyer lemons and sweet red peppers. If you have never tried chicken sausage, why not pick some up and serve up delicious grilled sandwiches for your backyard party!

Slice a Meyer lemon thinly and brown it on the grill. Spread mayo in a split roll and add a chicken sausage link and half of a diced sweet pepper. Top with the grilled lemon slices.


May 25, 2013


    No Memorial Day celebration would be complete with that fabulous Southern Macaroni Salad! This one is soooooo very good! Do you serve a macaroni salad, along with an old family favorite potato salad? You bet you do...this is the south honey! Enjoy! Don't forget the sweet tea and cornbread!

4 cups elbow macaroni, cooked, drained, and chilled
1 cup red onion, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
1 cup frozen peas, defrosted
1/2 cup red peppers, chopped
1 cup carrots, grated
3 eggs, hardboiled and chopped
1/2 lb thinly sliced deli ham, diced

The Dressing
1-1/2 cups mayonnaise
3/4 cup sour cream
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
3 Tbsp white vinegar
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp ground black pepper
2 tsp kosher salt
1 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp celery seed

Combine the elbows, onion, celery, peas, red peppers, carrots, eggs, and ham in a large mixing bowl. Then, in a separate bowl, combine the mayonnaise, sour cream, Dijon mustard, vinegar, garlic powder, black pepper, salt, sugar, and celery seed. Mix until fully combined. Pour the dressing over the salad ingredients and fold until evenly coated. Chill and serve.

May 24, 2013



"If we win the lottery, there is no question where we would be!"
There is something so awakening when living near the ocean. While living in Maine, Darling and I would drive down to the bay and just stroll along the walking trails, watching the sailboats, lobster boats and island ferries. We would dream about owning one of those stunningly beautiful sailboats one day. It was almost as if we could not stay away from such a magical place. Those old Victorian homes overlooked this postcard scene and I always wondered what that would be wake up to that beauty each morning! It became quite apparent that many people shared our love for this Oceanside view. It cost nothing...all of that serenity. Sometimes, it may be that winning the lottery is just a state of mind.


1 stick butter
1 large onion, chopped
1 large green pepper, chopped
1 large red pepper, chopped
1½ to 2 quarts heavy whipping cream
2 to 3 cups Cheddar cheese, shredded
Creole seasoning, to taste
2 dashes Worcestershire
5 (16-ounce) cans jumbo lump crab meat

In a large saucepan, sauté onion and peppers in butter about 5 minutes. Add enough flour to soak up butter. Slowly stir in cream. When cream is hot and mixture thickens, turn heat off. Add cheese and seasonings. Stir until cheese is melted.
Fold in crab meat.
Spray large casserole dish with Pam. Spoon in crab mixture.
 Bake at 350 degrees f. 20 to 30 minutes, until golden brown.
This recipe may be created as a main course casserole or an appetizer dip.


May 23, 2013


What Has Mae Mobley Been Up To?

Finding a sunny spot to catch the morning rays
Oh my....squeezing into small spaces

Watching the dog walkers in the greenbelt,
waiting to see her birds at the birdfeeders

Sunrays make me sleepy...not much going on out there

Still Waiting

A new discovery......what is that....finally something is of interest

A Ladybug!

Enough of that....hmmm....feathers.....something to play with

Now we're talking....a sweet baby bunny

 The Classic Peanut Butter Cookie
1 cup unsalted butter
1 cup crunchy peanut butter
1 cup white sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

Cream together butter, peanut butter and sugars. Beat in eggs.

In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir into batter. Put batter in refrigerator for 1 hour.

Roll into 1 inch balls and put on baking sheets. Flatten each ball with a fork, making a criss-cross pattern. Bake in a preheated 375 degrees F oven for about 10 minutes or until cookies begin to brown. Do not over-bake.

May 22, 2013



Almost Summer.....
A summer barbecue is one of life's simple pleasures
This weekend, many of us across our country will be gathering together to honor and celebrate Memorial Day. Barbecues will be held at many homes and we will smell the aromas of burgers, briskets and smoked ribs. Chicken on the grill can be divine, but what do we do, when we are not skilled at an outdoor grill? Miss Judy asked me this very question! She wanted to host a holiday barbecue, but she wanted an idea that would be easier for her to prepare for her family and her guests. Hey, I have a great recipe for you! A homemade barbecue sauce that you can do in your crockpot! The truth of the matter is, once you have homemade barbecue sauce, you will never buy a store-bought brand again. 

4 large skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons mustard
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 dashes hot pepper sauce
8 sandwich rolls, split
Place the chicken breasts into the bottom of a slow cooker. In a bowl, stir together the ketchup, mustard, lemon juice, garlic powder, maple syrup, Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, cayenne pepper, and hot sauce until the mixture is well blended.
 Pour the sauce over the chicken, set the cooker to Low, and cook for 6 hours. Shred the chicken with two forks, and cook for 30 more minutes. Serve the chicken and sauce spooned into the sandwich rolls!







May 21, 2013


Undeniably Indulgent......birthday cake!

I feel the presence of my mother with every crumb-the toasted buttery smell of the cakes coming out of their pans. She made this cake so often she could have probably done it with her eyes closed. We probably all have our favorite cake recipe that we turn to for birthday celebrations! This year, I have chosen an old family favorite...a perfectly white cake...perhaps with strawberry buttercream......

1 cup whole milk at cool room temperature
6 large egg whites at cool room temperature
1 ½ cups sugar
4 tsp. baking powder
¾ tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 1/3 cups cake flour
12 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened but still firm
Heat the oven to 350 degrees F and adjust a rack to the center position. Grease two 9-inch cake pans with softened butter or cooking spray and cover the bottom of each pan with a circle of parchment paper. In a medium bowl stir together the milk, egg whites, and vanilla with a fork.

 Place the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the butter and ¼ of the milk mixture and mix on low speed until dry ingredients are moistened, about 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium and mix until the batter comes together, about 30 seconds. Increase the speed to medium high and mix for 2 minutes stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl once or twice. Add the remaining milk/egg white mixture to the batter in three batches mixing for about 20 seconds after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat on medium high until batter is homogeneous and light, about 30 seconds longer.
 Transfer the batter to the prepared pans and bake until the cake is lightly colored, feels set, and a cake tester comes out clean when inserted to the center, about 26 minutes, rotating the cakes 180 degrees halfway through the baking time. (Baking time will vary depending on your oven.)  Remove pans to cooling rack and let rest for 5 minutes. Run a thin knife around the sides of the pans and invert the cakes one at a time onto cooling rack. Reinvert cakes so the top is facing up and let cool completely. Makes 2 nine-inch cakes.

Estelle's Sweet Tip: the recipe said not to cream the butter with the sugar, as most recipes require, but to beat the softened butter with the dry ingredients and then the wet ingredients. It said this results in a soft, moist and delicate cake!

May 20, 2013


 Mother had saved this recipe from the back of a box of Bisquick. According to General Mills. this recipe is one of their most popular! Well ......that was all that I needed. That was SO Mother....kicking it up a notch and using "Hot" sausage, rather than mild.....I just love that! I AM my Mother's daughter! Hubba-Hubba!!

Without breakfast, I'm useless -- cranky, tired,
 completely ravenous by lunch time.
 I love breakfast, and breakfast loves me.
At least I think it does.

Southern Brunch Casserole
1 pound of hot bulk sausage
1/2 cup of chopped onions
1 cup of chopped red bell peppers
1 cup of chopped green bell peppers
1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup of grated pepper jack cheese
1 egg, beaten
1/4 teaspoon of Tabasco
1 1/2 teaspoons of a combination of salt, black pepper and garlic powder
2 cups of biscuit mix
3/4 cup of milk
1/4 cup of sour cream


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Brown the sausage and vegetables in a skillet over medium heat.
Drain off excess oil. Add the cheeses, egg, hot sauce and seasoning mix.
Make a batter with the biscuit mix, milk and sour cream.
Gently fold the sausage mixture into the batter
and put into a greased 9" x 9" baking dish.
Bake until light browned, about 45 minutes.
Remove from the oven and cool to room temperature.
To serve, cut into squares.

May 15, 2013


    Southerners love a casserole! This squash dressing is highly requested at any social gathering and is perfect to welcome a new neighbor, take to a new mom, to an elderly parent now living in an assisted living environment or a church potluck. We want to stay true to our Southern Roots and this simple casserole brings back many, many happy memories! Whenever there was a family gathering, Mother was always asked to please bring her squash dressing!

2 cups chopped yellow squash
2 cups crumbled cornbread
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 teaspoons dried sage
1 (10.75 ounce) can cream of chicken
2 eggs, beaten
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1/2 cup coarsely chopped celery
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 t. garlic powder
1/2 t. Cajun seasoning
1/4 cup milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a medium baking dish.

Place squash and onion in a medium sized saucepan, cover with water, add 1/2 t. salt and sugar and boil until tender. Saute the celery and green pepper in a small skillet in melted butter and sauté until tender.

Drain the squash and onion and combine with the sautéed celery and green all in a large mixing bowl. Season with salt, pepper, Cajun seasoning and garlic powder. Combine all together with the cornbread, sage, soup, eggs and milk. Transfer to the prepared baking dish and bake for 30-35 minutes until mixture is browned on top. Bake 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until lightly browned.

May 14, 2013


A comfy bed or porch swing, a ceiling fan, and fresh air sound like the
 perfect recipe for an at home escape!
I dream of sunrooms and sleeping porches in the summer.....
We all love quick and easy recipes to prepare for lunch or dinner. These two words, "quick and easy" capture my immediate attention! I had a few ingredients on hand which were actually left over from previous use, and came up with this oh-so-delicious vegetarian recipe with a Mexican flair! Don't you prefer to spend your time outdoors, enjoying the afternoon with nature and reading a good book? I believe this recipe will prove to be one that you will serve over and over again! And the great thing is, you can make it your own by adding your preference of ingredients! The title says it all!
1(10 ounce) package frozen creamed spinach
 1 cup ricotta cheese
 1/2 cup sour cream
2 cups cubed Monterey Jack cheese, cheddar cheese, Colby cheese
4 (6 inch) flour tortillas
1 (19 ounce) jar salsa sauce

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Microwave frozen creamed spinach for 6-7 minutes. Remove from microwave and begin to assemble your enchiladas. Place a flour tortilla on a plate and spoon about 3 T. creamed spinach over the tortilla. Gently spread about 2 T. ricotta cheese over the spinach. Sprinkle 2 T. cubed cheese over this mixture. Carefully roll the tortilla and place in a greased baking dish. Complete this process until all six tortillas are made and placed side by side in your baking dish. Spoon the salsa over the tortillas and top with additional cubed cheese. Bake at 350 degrees F. for about 25 minutes. Serve with fresh avocado and fresh tomato slices. Top with a dollop of sour cream!