Tuesday, January 27, 2009

I'm so excited to share the OFFICIAL Legend Spice Company website with everyone.
Tess and Julian at http://www.julianwysocki.etsy.com/ did an absolutely amazing job at creating this website. They truly went above and beyond my expectations! If you are ever in the market for a web site or any computer graphics (banners, avatars, etc.) I HIGHLY recommend this team of professionals who offer quality and efficient service at a completely affordable rate for all small and home based business, organizations and more. Feel free to contact me anytime for more details or a referral for them.

So...what do you think? I can't wait to hear your comments! Please make a comment here on this blog (see below), or by contacting me thru my new email address: elaine@legendspicecompany.com

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Chicken Soup - just like Grandma made!

Grandma's Chicken Soup: http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=18825647

I get so many people asking me who that picture is on the label of Grandma's Chicken Soup. So I figured it was time to blog and tell the world that YES! That IS my Great Grandma.

My Great-Grandma Morris was the sweetest little lady - my personal memories of her include that she was quiet and small, very non-imposing. She always invited me to sit on her lap while she read me a book. However, my mother and her cousins have many different stories to tell.

Grandma and Grandpa Morris farmed in south-east Nebraska until their retirement. They were hard working, good hearted people who weren't afraid to get their hands dirty or to help a neighbor in need. Some years the crops brought in a profit, but other years the budget was stretched as thin as can be. A huge vegetable garden was kept to help feed the family throughout the year. Most everthing was canned or kept in the fruit cellar for later use.

Times were especially hard in the early 1900's and one year was the coldest anyone could recall. The siblings recalled having to form makeshift beds in the kitchen one night so the cookstove could keep them from freezing in their sleep. Even with this extra bit of heat the family woke up unexpectedly in the middle of the night to glass breaking and popping. Upon investigation, they found that some of the mason jars in the pantry got so cold the contents inside were freezing, causing the jars to break. Everyone hurridly brought the rest of the panty contents into the kitchen with them in order to save the rest of the food.

That story always comes to mind in the frigid cold days of winter, like most of the country is experiencing right now. While I will probably still complain about the icy roads and my cold fingers I do count my blessings for our furnace - and of course for all the sacrifices and hard times my Great Grandparents faced in rural Nebraska that many years ago.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Blue Plate Special!


Stroll down mainstreet ....smell that wonderful aroma coming from the diner across the street? It's "Georgia's Blue Plate Special" .... mmmmm... the BEST meatloaf around!
A wonderful blend of herbs and spices fill this dish with down-home goodness, while a light brown sugar glaze gives it an honest goodness that will have everyone asking for second helpings!

Meatloaf has long been a staple in American kitchens, and now you can bring it home to your family with this easy to prepare meatloaf mix. Just add your choice of ground meat and enjoy! Many meatloaf recipes are rather time consuming, but who has time to mix and measure and still have dinner on the table in time. Try this mix for a fast meal - your family will think you spent all day in the kitchen.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Venison Anyone?


Like many of you across the country I live in a small town where 90% of the people go hunting each fall. Deer is the favorited game in Michigan and many people stock their freezers with Venison to help feed their family for the rest of the year. We're always looking for new ways to cook this low fat, healthy choice meat so I came up with a VENISON SEASONING dry rub. It is very flavorful with a slight smoky taste for an added "boost". It is great rubbed into Venison steaks or sprinkled on ground Venison for burgers.

The Legend I wrote for the label was meant to be a bit silly and to poke fun at all our "great white hunters" who head for the woods each fall. Many hunters in todays modern society spend days and lots of dollars getting ready to head into the woods for deer season each fall. If you've ever been in a sportsmans shop in October or November you'll know what I'm talking about. Bad economy? Not when it comes to deer hunting! One would think that all is needed is a good gun or bow, some ammunition, a warm coat and boots and a sack lunch. But, nooooooo....there is the instant glove heating packs, warming cushions to sit on while passing the time in a deer stand, deer urine (yes, they pay good money for this stuff!), spray on stuff that masks the human scent (I don't even want to know what that smells like since it's on the same shelf as the deer urine). And of course the right color camo clothes to hide yourself with the coordinating bright orange hats so everyone can see you and not mistake you for a deer hiding in the trees!

Ohhh...I do love Deer Hunting Season and my silly sense of humor hopefully portrays that in this latest Legend: http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=18593358
As you can see in the photograph I've included a very generous portion of this spice blend so you can enjoy it on more than one meal. Try it today!!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

With the beginning of the New Year many people are making RESOLUTIONS to improve their lives somehow. Polls show that most resolutions include a vow to eating healthier. FISH is one of the better main dish choices you can make when chosing to eat healthy. However, a lot of people seem to be leary of buying or cooking fish simply because they don't know how to cook it properly. I developed the FAT MERMAID Sea Salt Seasoning Blend to be used on any choice of fish or seafood. In fact, I used this seasoning on our Salmon Steaks last night and the kids gobbled it up! I'm hoping they love it because it is so tasty, not because they associate it with The Little Mermaid (a favorite Disney movie).
Yes, we are DISNEY fans at our house - The Little Mermaid VHS tape completely wore out when my daughter was younger. After about 100 times of listening to this movie I began to get a little cynical about this castle under the sea and as my husband and I became more "Disnified" (comparable to stupified) the snarky comments began. Now..now...don't give me that look! Seriously! How can you ignore the fact that one of this girl's best friends is a CRAB! That's just open waters for a good joke! (pardon the pun). Ultimately, the FAT MERMAID was born in my mind - she is the Little Mermaid's lesser known sister. Disney doesn't show her because she was too busy in the kitchen of course! Thus, this SPICE BLEND was born. I invite you to try it out soon.
Still not sure about cooking fish? Here is a super easy recipe to follow:
1. Chose your favorite boneless fish fillet - For a mild, less fishy taste I like a simple "whitefish" or "perch" or sometimes "Salmon". (Trout or Bass are a little more fish-flavorful and also tasty choices). You can buy fish fresh or frozen - if you buy it fresh be sure to ask the guy behind the counter the date the fish you want was put out (sometimes the keep the fresher cuts behind the ones you see in the front of the case).
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
3. Use a glass baking dish - spray with a non-stick cooking spray OR lightly coat with a cooking oil (I use Canola or Olive Oil)
4. Lay your fresh or frozen fish fillets in the baking dish (don't stack them).
5. Using a spoon, dip into this SPICE PACKET and sprinkle seasonings onto each Fillet. Use as much or as little as you like. (I use about 1 teaspoon per 4" fillet)
6. Bake for about 30 minutes - check often as the thickness of your fillet will determine actual cooking time. To see if the fish is ready, use a fork and pick at the corner of a fillet - if it comes apart in flakes, or layers then it is done. If it is still hard to pull apart then it needs to cook a little longer.
note: You can also cook your fish in a frying pan using this same method - cover your pan with a lid during cooking time to trap in the flavor and moisture. When the underside of the fillet is "done", use a spatula to flip it over and cook the other side. Test for doneness using a fork as explained above.

Monday, January 5, 2009

As promised, I am going to tell you a little history about each of the "Legends" behind my Spice Blends.

Today I'll give you the history of "Ol' Harold's Wheel of a Deal Fried Chicken Seasoning" - which is available for sale here : http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=19079682

Ol' Harold is really my dear ol' Dad - who actually was a Car Salesman for 37 years and was known to most people as Ol' Harold. He owned and operated Rowe Motor Company in Nebraska City, NE from 1967 - 2004. He had quite a personality and loved to talk to his customers and tell funny stories (maybe that's where I got it from!). I chose the western theme for this story because of his love of watching old black and white westerns on Sunday mornings. The cartoon on the label was drawn of him in the 1970's by Paul Fell (artist) and was used in many newspaper ads over the years. And, yes, he did love Fried Chicken, so this Spice Blend is definately fitting.

This SPICE BLEND is so easy to use. The directions are included on the label of the packet, but here are more detailed directions if needed:

1. Rinse your chicken and pat dry (paper towels work great for this)

2. In a mixing bowl, combine this spice packet with 2 cups of flour.

3. In a seperate smaller bowl, slightly beat two eggs (take a fork and break up the yolks)

4. Put a large skillet on the stovetop and add 2-3 Tablespoons of cooking oil (I use Canola)

5. Take a piece of chicken and dip in the egg mixture, then in the flour mixture until thoroughly coated.

6. Place coated chicken in frying pan and cook until golden brown. To test for doneness, just cut open one of the larger pieces - if the meat is white (not pink) then it is done!

*note: See all those crumbles left in your skillet? They make great chicken gravy! Here's how:

1. Add 2 Tbl. flour to 1 cup milk - wisk together

2. Pour milk mixture into the hot skillet and stir till a gravy forms.

3. Enjoy on top of your fried chicken, or with mashed potatoes. YUM!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Legend Spices - a tale of two spices

Sugar and Spice and everything nice .... well, it's nice, but is it really enough?

I didn't think so which is why I developed my Spice Blends. I LOVE to cook and try out new recipes. It didn't take me long to realize that the key to cooking tasty meats and fish was all in the seasoning. And, it took even less time to realize that my family enjoyed dinnertime much more when the main course of chicken, pork, beef or fish was properly seasoned.

The cute, informative or funny stories that are attached to each Legend Spice Blend are a result of my creative and sometimes warped mind as well as my love of making up and telling stories. Not to mention, it's a whole lot more fun for me to tell my 7 year old that we are having CAVEMAN CHICKEN for dinner (it always opens up a fun topic of dinner conversation!).

Right now I have 7 different Spice Blends available for sale here: http://www.legendspicecompany.etsy.com/

I have many more blends that will be introduced in the next few weeks - including Vegetable Mix seasonings and more.

Finally, I would like to give a little applause here to a great group of other "edible" sellers that also sell their fares on Etsy.com They offer everthing from Gourmet Dipped Apples to Cheesecake to Tamales - check them out here: http://etsyedibleartsteam.blogspot.com/