Sunday, January 11, 2009

Cowboy Nachos and a Big thanks to PW!

Ever since I discovered her Blog a few weeks ago, I've been Super-inspired by Ree Drummond, aka, The Pioneer Woman. First of all, let me say right away that while her Life looks pretty Fantastic, I do not for a moment wish it was mine... Sure, her kids, or Punks, as she affectionately calls them, are Adorable, and her husband, or Marlboro Man, as she calls him, and their respective Families and their homes (yes, plural, because there's the main house and the Lodge they are remodeling in a grand, but totally comfortable, Pottery-Barn-meets-Architectural-Digest kinda way) all seem Perfect, the fact of the matter is I could never keep up with Everything her life requires. Including, but not Limited to the endless Cattle Ranch chores and the homeschooling for her Four children that Mrs. Drummond does and with her Whole heart in it, and makes appear so Effortless. So I'm perfectly content having Ree Drummond be her, while she Inspires me, her humble Blog guest, to be a Better version of me! That doesn't mean I don't covet the General-store style Flour and sugar drawers in her Kitchen or the natural way she seems to have with her Photography!

I've already shared The Pioneer Woman's blog with Carroll, my dearest friend up in Boston, and since I love the rest of You too much to hold out on you any longer, I'm mentioning it here tonight so you won't feel left out. Honestly, I couldn't call Carroll fast enough to tell her about The Pioneer Woman blog website after I reading her Love Story. You see, Carroll and I share the same appreciation for sweet Romance, so when I discovered PW's love story on her site, I just had to share it with Carroll. Carroll called me a few days Later to thank me because she loves PW now too, but she also confessed to not getting much else Done the day she followed my directions to the PW's Love story. I'm still not Sorry about it!  

As I mentioned, I've been inspired by The Pioneer Woman... How? Well, first of all, my Blog photos, heck! the photos I take in general too, have all Improved so much since I found all the photography tips she so generously Shares with her readers. After reading PW's tips on focus, lighting, composition, etc., and what she's learned about Photoshop and especially what she shared about creating her Blog Banner (which I love and wish for as my own!) I was inspired to: (A) locate and Read the owner's manual for my old Digital camera and Follow the directions! and, (B) Dust off that copy of Photoshop Elements I've been too afraid to install on my MacBook. Now, while my photos are Much better, I still haven't figured out how to produce a blog banner nearly as spectacular looking as PW's, but I do understand PS Elements more than I did before meeting her blog! And, the Good news is that at least now I have hope that One day, I might!

The last way I've been inspired, and by Last I only mean in terms of Category, by PW is through her recipes

While today was the First time I actually attempted one of PW's recipes, reading about some of her Creations has helped me improve some of my own organization and prep work in the kitchen. Before I share with you PW's Cowboy Nachos I made for my Very own Marlboro Man tonight, I want to also say that aside from her Wonderful photography, recipes and the stories she shares with her readers, Ree Drummond is also darn Funny too! So... If you don't click on at least ONE of the links I'm providing within this post of mine to check out the PW for yourself, I'll be forced to believe that you no longer Love me the way you say...

PW's Cowboy Nachos... More or Less!
after reading her Recipe and taking in all the Great photos of her Cowboy
Nachos I began to sulk a little realizing I didn't have the same beautiful baker
PW has. But then I remembered two things. One, I just Got a new Pampered Chef pie
plate that is just as pretty AND, two, that I already have the Best baker I could possibly hope
to have to accomplish PW's Cowboy Nachos! You see, in 1996, Susan McCann, a woman I worked
with at HCS, in Salinas, CA, invited me to my Very first Pampered Chef show, which launched me
off into a now, going-on Fourteen year obsession with their products... Any way, at Susan's show the
Pampered Chef lady prepared something she called a, Touch-down taco dip in this round stoneware
baker I immediately had to own! I've baked probably 50 whole chickens in my Deep dish baker since then,
which is why it is Perfectly seasoned, completely non-stick and the Only choice for my Cowboy Nachos!

Sorry, pretty Pie plate, but today's not your day... Back in your box you go!
chopping White onion for PW's pico
and tomatoes too!
I love Avocados and could eat them straight from
their peel with a Spoon. But I won't, not today
where's that Spoon?
once again, I bought a whole clove of Garlic but opted for my Dorot
frozen minced garlic cubes from Trader Joe's... Not because I was 
being Lazy but because he was hungry, so every minute counted!
some would Say my Pico isn't perfect because I don't use the
jalapenos; but I'm a heat-weenie and so is he, so I leave them out!
By the way... Is it just me or is it just a Coincidence that Pico ingredients
look like the Mexican flag? Now, before anyone gets Offended, please don't
because I'm happy to admit the German flag makes me think of Schnitzel! 
a little Mozzarella...
and a Boat-load of Monterey Jack - Yum!
adding corse Salt to my (less-heat version of) Pico
Okay, so here is where my Cowboy Nachos are nothing like PW's Cowboy Nachos, and
frankly, I'm more than a Little embarrassed... PW uses her left over Brisket and because we've
already Established that only PW can be PW, and because I didn't have time today to prepare
her brisket, I used the most Expensive, precooked shredded lean Beef I could get my hands on 
... and today, that just has to be Good enough. So I cooked my lean,
shredded Beef and began the Layering process. First, I placed round Tortilla
chips in the bottom of my deep Dish baker, then topped them with grated
cheeses and then topped them with my cheater-Brisket 
I topped all that with my Pico. And, I hope that
PW doesn't mind but I also added...
some Fresh sweet corn I cut right off the cob! And that about
does it for my Variations... I guess you could call this post,
Confessions of a Pioneer Woman fan, huh? 
More cheese, please...
the Second layer begins. Except, this time, I remembered the Beans!
more shredded Beef and cheese. No pico on this
layer - the reserved Pico will come after this bakes
Wow! I think I just made PW's Cowboy Nachos...
so if You're wondering what to whip up for that Superbowl game
(without the Dallas Cowboys, sniff, sniff) in a Few weeks... Stop wondering!
I cannot Finish this post without giving my Good old Pampered Chef
deep Dish baker another plug... Notice how completely Non-stick it is!
it is dishes like this one that make me even More sad that Brandon's gone
to Basic training now, because since William doesn't care for Nachos and
all my friends and Family are so far away, there's no one to Share them!

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