Janet's Notebook
Perfect Picnics Make Warm Weather Even Sweeter

Man Catching Fried Chicken!

Is that summer I see ambling up the driveway onto my doorstep? She's early for the party this year, but we're ready! And nothing says warm weather fun like a good old-fashioned picnic. Care to join us??

First on the must-haves list are the amazingly snacktastic Pastry Wrapped Olives from Charleen Borchers. "Whenever I ask what to bring, these tasty pastry wrapped olives are on the top of the list," says Charlene. And we can clearly see why! These perfectly salty Spanish olives are wrapped in a simple dough laced with cheddar cheese, Worcester sauce and kicky Tabasco. We've found them to be at their absolute best when served at room temperature, so they're the perfect pack-along for your next picnic.

To add a whole other kind of spice to your life, you won't want to miss out on Leah Stacey's Man Catching Fried Chicken! The Tennessee cook is earning accolades galore for this sassy spin on classic fryers. "This chicken promises to 'catch a man,'" laughs Leah. "If he doesn't take the bait then he isn't worth having!" Amen to that! Spicy, savory and super satisfying, Leah's dish had us at hello! Heat things up and give this chicken a fry.

Now, if barbecue is a favorite at your family picnics, you'll want to listen up... Ms. Karen Carr is sharing the secrets to her mom's special barbecue sauce! "My mother always used this recipe for her ribs and chicken. It was always wonderful and always got rave reviews," says Karen, whose sauce sparkles with flavor thanks to rich ingredients such as mustard, Worcester and molasses. "I never remember a time she made bar-b-que ribs and chicken that she used bottled sauce," continues Karen. "She always made her own sauce and we loved it!" How great that this tradition is being carried on! We use this sauce regularly at home, adjusting the amount of vinegar up or down depending on how sweet we want it on any given day. (I don't know about you, but some days I just feel a little sweeter than others...)

For an all-American al fresco dessert nothing beats a traditional, homemade apple pie! Home cook Patti Smith knows a thing or two about sweet traditions, thanks to her mom. "My mother - my kids called her 'Ghee' - was a from-scratch baker," recalls Patti who recently shared with us her mom's Blue Ribbon apple pie recipe. "This was one of her favorite pies to prepare for all of us. Living in North Georgia, we are only an hour from the best apple orchards around. We used to go pick our own apples and by night fall, we would have a wonderful aroma calling us back to the kitchen for apple pie and ice cream." Using a prepared piecrust is fine if you're in a pinch. Patti tells us that it won't take away from the pie's outrageously good flavor. "My mother passed away over 7 years ago," she says, "but when I prepare this recipe, I am transported back to her kitchen with her love surrounding us."

These warm weather days are the perfect excuse for us to start building new memories of our own. Grab a basket, whip up a few of these tried and true goodies, and then bask in the warmth of the joy that surrounds us. A beautiful day awaits!

More Stories... Subscribe to RSS

lejone reyon - May 25, 2012
Nice recipe . I will try it very soon . If you post video of this recipe then its even better for understanding.
Black Kitchen Cabinets
Kim Biegacki - May 23, 2012
OK, all these recipes sound great but I think I will try the chicken first. I just checked to see if our "Ohio" Walmart carries the Kentucky Kernel seasoning and it looks like they do, so I will pick some up Friday. It will be my first time cooking chicken on the stovetop in an iron skillet, so wish me luck. :-) I hope I can do this recipe justice. hehe....sure sounds delicious. I may try the fry daddy if I chicken out on the frying pan.
Diane Powell - May 22, 2012
Thanks for all the great recipes, I will try them all.
melodee seiz - May 22, 2012
thank you for all these wonderful recipes!! i am so glad i found this site!! i use it often to cook many wonderful dishes :)