I can honestly say I don’t remember ever eating kale as a kid.  I knew it as an ornamental plant that lasted through the fall.  Come to find out, that is a different variety than what we eat.  A few years ago, I had Kale, Sausage, Potato and Bean Soup at Olive Garden.  It was very good, and everyone at the table loved it.  I decided I’d try it, and after searching for recipes online, I ignored them for the most part, and put my own combination together.  It is definitely reminiscent of old time, hardy soups.  The only thing I serve with it is corn bread.

I’m sharing my recipe, and I hope you’ll enjoy it – and make it your own.  Adjust as you like, you can’t ruin it as long as you cook the beans long enough (and the sausage of course).


Step by Step Directions

After cooking linguica for about 7-10 minutes, add broth and beans, simmer for about 20 minutes.  If you want potatoes in your soup, now is the time to add some bite sized pieces of potatoes.

All ingredients except kale simmering on stove.
All ingredients except kale simmering on stove.

At this point you can either let it cook at a slow simmer for about an hour or so, or pour it into a crockpot and let it cook on low for a few hours.  I wanted to spend some time outside, so I put mine in the crockpot.  I added the kale for the last hour of cooking.  I figure the last hour by when the beans are a bit too firm, but edible.   I’m not crazy about ‘al dente’ beans, and like them so I can smash them with the back of a spoon very easily.

All ingredients in crockpot, kale added.
All ingredients in crockpot, kale added.

At this point, all you have to do is stir it up, and let it cook until kale is soft and you are ready to eat.  If you added potatoes, they add more body to the soup, and also tend to help make the broth thicker.  Either way, it is a filling soup.   Chorizo will make it a bit spicier, as will hot sausage.


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What do you just love to eat?    I love to eat just about anything, although I haven’t jumped on the Brussel sprout bandwagon yet.   Lately, anything with BBQ sauce, corn bread, chorizo or cheese seems to be on my list.   Of course, chocolate, but I tend to eat that raw…



How’s this for nostalgia?  ~Candied Pecans~   I’ve never made them but remember my grandmother having them on special occasions and LOVING them.  So, as I was checking in with Twitter today, I came across a recipe, and the post includes a give away – for a 3 piece set of vintage bowls that are inspired by Pyrex.  As a side note, I hope to have an article by a collector/seller of vintage Pyrex- did you know there is a market for these old pieces?  Stay tuned…

vintage_charm_memory_lane_3pc_mix_bowl_set_1119310_stackedBack to the Candied Pecan recipe… The Wicked Noodle agreed to share the recipe here, and once you see how yummy and simple it is, you’ll have to check out her other recipes and enter the give away for a chance to win the Vintage Charm Bowls ~ good luck!

I plan on trying this soon, it sounds like a great holiday recipe also.  In my house, we are always snacking, and nuts are one of the healthier snacks.  Maybe the sugar isn’t the healthiest, but overall it is better than a lot of choices.  Homemade is always better than processed foods.  See, now don’t you feel better?

How to Make Candied Pecans


  • 1 pound pecan halves (about 4-5 cups)
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven to 250F.
  2. Beat egg white and water together until foamy. Toss pecans in mixture until well coated.
  3. Mix together remaining ingredients. Toss pecans in sugar mixture until well coated (your hands work best for this).
  4. Spread pecans onto a baking sheet and bake for one hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
  5. Allow to cool then store in an air-tight container.


I make a mean mac and cheese, and my pulled pork is pretty good too.  My corn bread is ‘ok’ but not as good as some older friends make it.  Do you have a really good recipe?  Fool proof?   If you’d like to share it in the comments, that would be great!   I do have some cute, cast iron, corn cob shaped corn bread pans.  One tip I learned (the hard way)- always heat up the pans while you’re preparing the bread.   I oil them up, put them in the oven while it pre-heats.  By the time the oven is hot and the bread batter is ready to pour, the pans are very hot.  That gives it a bit of a crispy outer layer, and they seem to hold some moisture inside.   The best part is they pop right out of the pan when you take them out of the oven, so no more crumbling corn bread!

A friend gave me a copy of a corn bread cook book, so I’m working my way through that.  Learning about yellow corn flour versus white corn flour, and some of the interesting variations on different recipes.   I’ll share more about the cookbook soon.   We’ll also be posting some ‘how-to’ information on caring for cast iron, and what the different marks mean on the pans.

April 2016

Corn bread… I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like it – but I know a lot of people who only like ‘their’ type of cornbread.  Moist, dry, white, yellow.  All different tastes for all different taste buds I guess.  I have a cookbook – a gift from a friend who loves cornbread – especially if I make it (or probably anyone else too).cornbread_gospels  Anyway, the cookbook is ‘The Cornbread Gospel’ by Crescent Dragonwagon.  It has so many different cornbread recipes – and I’ve tried a few.  I like the basic Durgin Park style recipe – its easy, and I always have the ingredients on hand.  It is a drier, semi-sweet cornbread.  Great sliced and pan fried in butter the next morning.  What is your favorite cornbread recipe?  Is it sweet?  Moist?  Savory?  I’d love to try it out – and I’m sure all our readers would love to see it.