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Tell me why ...

August 22, 2012
By Pat Jensen , Marshall Independent

Why do we get unexpected company on the day the house is a mess?

Why does the phone ring just as I'm about to go out the door?

Why does the man playing golf using the most expensive set of golf clubs always have the worst score?

Why do big men drive small cars?

Why does the lady who has divorced two husbands always seem so eager to give advice to a new bride?

Why does a stock go up right after you sell it?

Why does the guy with the cheap fishing rod catch the most fish?

Why is it that you drive for miles along a wide road and don't see another vehicle until you come to a narrow bridge - only to meet a wide truck?

Why is it you water the garden and then 1 inch of rain falls the same day?

Why is the gal with a closet full of clothes always complaining she has nothing to wear?

Why is it you can't find something until after you've replaced it with a new one?

Why does a child express the need to "go potty" shortly after you have left the house?

Why is something marked down to half price in a store - the day after you buy it?

These are just some of the mysteries of life ... for which there seems to be no answer. I'm sure you can think of many more.

Requires lots of attention, but so worth it


2 large chicken breasts, split in half (Allow bone and skin to remain)

2 tsp. sea salt

1/2 cup warm water

4 T. butter, melted

2 T. canola oil

2 tsp. lemon juice

1 tsp. Mrs. Dash Grilling Blends (chicken)

Use low heat setting on gas grill.

Grill chicken over low heat 15 min; turning every 5 minutes.

Dissolve salt in warm water. Cook the chicken for another 30 minutes, turning every 5 minutes, basting the breasts with the salted water just before you turn them.

In a small bowl, combine butter, canola oil, lemon juice and seasoning blend. Do not baste with salted water from this point. Continue to cook chicken for 15 min, turning every five minutes, basting with the butter mixture.

Notes: As you might guess, a kitchen timer is very helpful. Use tongs to turn the chicken. Keep a spray bottle of water near the grill in case of flare-ups. (Spray the flames, not the chicken) Try to keep cover on grill closed as much as possible. If grilling small breasts, reduce the cooking time.

I purchased a family pack of large split whole chicken breasts (with ribs and skin) used four of the halves and froze the remaining chicken to be used at a later date. The grilled chicken was moist and full of flavor ... and I didn't burn a single piece!

Our sweet Sue shares this recipe -

TEXAS CAVIAR (Bean salad or dip)

1 can pinto beans, rinsed and drained

1 can blackeye peas, rinsed and drained

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 can whole kernel corn, drained

1 red onion, chopped

1 green bell pepper, chopped

1 red bell pepper, chopped

Combine in large bowl. Prepare dressing and pour over vegetables, mixing well. Refrigerate until serving. Very colorful and delicious.

Sue uses Dressing No. 1

3/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 cup (or less) sugar

1 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. pepper

Mix well.

I chose to make Dressing No. 2

2/3 cup apple cider vinegar

2 tsp. Dijon mustard

1-1/4 tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. minced garlic

1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. sugar (that's all!)

1/4 cup plus 3 T. olive oil

Mix well.

Notes: I served the Texas Caviar as a dip for chips. Try Scoops/multigrain. Sue likes to use these chips also. May substitute a sweet white or yellow onion for the red. I used 1 cup of chopped onion. The cans of beans and corn are the standard 15 ounce size.

My sister, Judy, often shares recipes with me and I love her for it. Judy got this treasure from her daughter, Laurie.


14 oz. flaked coconut

2/3 to 3/4 cup mini chocolate chips

1 can (14 oz.) sweetened cond. milk

1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350. Cover cookie sheets with parchment paper. Set aside. Combine all four ingredients; mix until well blended. No electric mixer is needed. I use a large spoon or firm rubber spatula. Drop dough 2" apart onto prepared pans. Use a cookie scoop if you have one. Press dough gently with back of spoon to flatten slightly. Bake about 15 min. or until light golden brown. After removing from oven, just slide parchment paper and cookies off baking sheet onto a double layer of newspaper which has been placed on counter or table.

Guess what ... I have more notes!

If you don't have a cookie scoop, drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls onto cookie sheet. No parchment paper? Then be sure to spray cookie sheets with non-stick spray. Let cookies cool for 1 min. before placing onto wire racks. I used air-bake pans which I covered with parchment paper. Used the center rack position in my oven. My cookies were done in only 14 minutes. (Ovens do vary) We enjoyed the soft chewy texture.

Yield: 40 to 45 macaroons. Warning: You won't be able to eat just one.

Just a thought: Summer is a season divided into three parts: anticipation, vacation, recuperation.



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