Friday, November 18, 2016

After 8 Rewarding Years, My Carolina Kitchen Says Good-bye

Salmon with Marsala Sauce

My Carolina Kitchen quietly celebrated its 8th blogging anniversary this past October. I feel that 8 wonderful years is a respectable time to say good-bye.

I am not planning on disappearing totally. I hope, from time to time, to post some of our new favorite recipes on My Carolina Kitchen 's Facebook page, link here, and hope you'll follow along.  altogether.

Blogging has been a wonderful journey for me and brought great pleasure into our lives. I have truly enjoyed getting to know each of you and I thank you for your continued support of My Carolina Kitchen. Along the way Meakin and I have been fortunate enough to have met a number of you in person and we will always treasure those friendships.

Before I say my final good-bye, I would like to share an idea with you. In the last several months I’ve been creating new recipes from old favorites. This idea is not novel or new, but I’ve found it to be truly rewarding and I think you will too.

Here’s how it works – find one of your favorite recipes, choose a component from it, and take that component to create a new recipe.

As an example, I choose Pork Marsala and took the Marsala sauce from Pork Marsala, link here, as the component and, instead of serving it over pork, I served it over salmon.

Pork Marsala

What I discovered was that the Marsala sauce was equally as delicious on salmon as it was on pork. Take a look.

Salmon with Marsala Sauce

Broiled Salmon with Marsala Sauce
Adapted from Pierre Franey, 60 Minute Gourmet & First Home Love Life – serves 4 
Printable Recipe 

1 1/2 pounds boneless fresh salmon fillets, preferably with the skin intact
2 to 3 teaspoons grape seed oil, or other neutral tasting oil
Kosher salt or sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

Cut the salmon into four pieces approximately the same size and weight. Put salmon on a plate, rub with oil, season with salt & pepper, and allow the salmon to sit at room temperature for 10 to 20 minutes.

Preheat the broiler. Arrange the salmon in one layer, skin side down, on an unheated sheet pan lined with heavy duty foil for easy clean-up. Place the salmon under the broiler about six to seven inches from the source of heat. Broil 8 to 10 minutes or just until the pieces are cooked through. It is not necessary to turn the salmon. If salmon starts to get too crispy on the top, change from broil to bake and bake at 400 degrees until done. Do not overcook or the salmon will be dry. Allow to rest for a few minutes, then  serve with the Marsala sauce.

Marsala Sauce 
Slightly adapted from First Home Love Life, serves 4
Printable Recipe

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
8 ounces sliced baby bella mushrooms
2 peeled and thinly sliced shallots
2 peeled and chopped garlic cloves
½ cup dry Marsala wine
½ cup low-sodium, low fat chicken broth or homemade
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried
4 fresh thyme sprigs for garnish

Heat olive oil and butter in a 10” non-stick skillet over medium-low heat. Add the mushrooms and sauté, stirring occasionally until they have rendered their juices and are brown. Add shallots and garlic and cook for 1 – 2 minutes more, taking care that the shallots and garlic don’t burn. Add the Marsala wine and chicken broth. Using a wooden spoon, scrape up the fond (brown bits) from the bottom of the pan. Add the chopped fresh thyme, stir to incorporate, then cover the pan and let simmer for about 5 to 8 minutes more.

If the sauce has not thickened to your liking, make a slurry of arrowroot (or cornstarch) and cold water and mix equal parts of arrowroot and water in a small dish and stir with a spoon. Then stir the slurry into the sauce until the sauce is sufficiently thickened. Serve hot. This sauce goes well with pork, salmon or chicken.

Chicken Marengo

Another new recipe was created from another old favorite – Chicken Marengo, shown above, link here. I took the Marengo sauce and served it over lean, bone-in pork chops and it too was a hit. (I apologize for no photo – the dish was half gone before I remembered to photograph it.)

Marengo Sauce
Slightly adapted from “With a Jug of Wine” by Morrison Wood, serves 4
Printable Recipe

2 tablespoons olive oil
4 small white onions, peeled & chopped
1 small clove of garlic, minced
1 ½ cups sliced fresh mushrooms
2 tablespoons minced parsley
4 tomatoes, peeled and sliced (canned, crushed first, are fine, including their juices)
1 cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon brandy
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon flour
Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley for garnish

Heat olive oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat and sauté chopped onions, garlic, mushrooms, parsley in 2 tablespoons olive oil. Cook this mixture, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are tender. Add the tomatoes and their juices, dry white wine, brandy, tomato paste and 1 tablespoons flour. Mix and blend the ingredients well and allow to simmer over a medium flame for about 20 to 25 minutes. Serve the sauce hot over pork chops or chicken breasts garnished with chopped parsley.

You get the idea I’m sure. Here’s another example of taking a component from one recipe and trying it in another.

Chicken Provencal

I chose a Provencal sauce as the component and, instead of serving it over chicken, (link here) I served it over pork and it was excellent as well.

So voila, as you can see, new recipes can be created from old favorites and at the same time your recipe file will expand. Creating new recipes is rewarding and fun experiment. I hope that you’ll give it a try.

For better viewing, chick photos to enlarge.

Before I go, once again I want to thank each of you for your support of My Carolina Kitchen through the last 8 years. I hope that you’ll continue to try new recipes as well as experimenting with old ones. I know I plan to l continue to do the same.

I'm not planning to totally disappear. From time to time I plan to post some  of our new favorite recipes on My Carolina Kitchen's Facebook page, link here, and I would love it if  you to followed along.

I’ll leave you with some wise words from Julia Child.

Moderation. Small helpings.
Sample a little bit of everything. These are the secrets of happiness and good health.

- Julia Child


  1. Happy Bloganniversary! Sad to hear that you won't be blogging anymore... Anyway, I've enjoyed every single post of yours and I wish to thank you for the great time.



  2. I've enjoyed your posts and thank you for the things you've taught me over the years Sam! I wish you a very Happy Holiday Season-take care:@)

  3. Happy Blog Anniversary, Sam. Thank YOU for sharing all your wonderful recipes during all those years, I really appreciate it!
    Have a wonderful weekend!

  4. Congrats on your 8 years of blogging! I am saddened though to read you will no longer be blogging. I've enjoyed and been inspired by your posts. Thank you for sharing.

    Best wishes and lots of love and hugs for the two of you ~ FlowerLady

  5. Blogging is not what it was when we started 8+ years ago but I've kept my website and occasionally do a post -- for my pleasure and posterity. I will continue to follow your posts on FB which, in fact, is what brought be here today. Best to you and Meakin.

  6. Wishing you the very best Sam! I'm glad you'll be around on FB!!


  7. Great recipe idea Sam. Sorry to see you go as I have enjoyed your blog and will miss the recipes and photos, but I sure understand, especially after 8 years. Let's be sure to keep in touch and try to get together when in each others area.

  8. Your blog has had a wonderful run! And this salmon marsala is another delectable example of the marvelous recipes you've shared with us all. I'll keep up with you on facebook. xoxo

  9. I have enjoyed getting to know you..I am sorry that you will no longer blogging..
    Congratulations on 8 years and yest taht is very respectable..
    I am not on FB..

    however I wish you and Maekin SO WELL! And thank you.

  10. It'a been a wonderful ride and many of your recipes have become staple in my kitchen repertoire. I'll continue to peruse your archives whenever I need inspiration. All good wishes to you and Meakin, Sam!

  11. Well I am so happy that we did get to meet in person! It has been a joy to get to know you. I do follow you on facebook, so I will keep up with you there. Thank you for all of the wonderful recipes!

  12. Well Sam, all I can say is 8 must be the magic number...I've been at it the same length of time and am slowing down my blog too. I still have about 2 or 3 months in drafts so will use those starting in January. It's been a great 8 years and I've loved getting to know you and your family and follow along on your travels. So pleased you will post once in a while and there's always Facebook!
    Best to you and Meakin, as always.

  13. I know that you all thought long and hard about this. We will miss your posts here but look forward to keeping up with you on Facebook. Keep on rocking, you two!

  14. I remember when I "found" your blog, I was so excited! Eight years is a long time and the recipes that you shared with us are always "first cabin"! Thank you so much. I will miss your posts but I am happy that we can still remain in touch through Facebook!

  15. Sam, Sorry to see you go but I do understand as I've considered discontinuing my blog site as well...or at the least backing off on the number of posts. I don't do Facebook but perhaps Laurie can pick you up as that's her game. Love that beautifully plated Salmon entree! Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

  16. Eight wonderful years…sorry I wasn't around for the first three. You will be missed by all of us but I certainly understand. Enjoy your new kitchen and all the new dishes you will be preparing in it. like the idea of revamping old recipes with new ingredients.

  17. Sam, I'm sorry to hear this, and I'm happy to say I've been a follower of yours for a long time. Your blog is great and I enjoyed your stories and great recipes. Here's wishing you the very best. Take care

  18. Been so nice knowing you here:).

  19. I will miss seeing you here on your blog, Sam, butas I already follow you on facebook so I'll catch up with your new recipes and food ideas there. Best wishes on all your new adventures!

  20. I wish you the best. It has been a fun journey!

  21. Love your blog and I will miss it but as you say you are not totally disappearing that sounds hopeful. By the way my FB page is under Dulcie Beak if you should wonder who she might be! Take care and don't completely lose touch. Diane

  22. Sounds delicious! Hope to be seeing you around from time to time :)

  23. I've certainly felt the need to back off from blogging myself from time to time, Sam, do I totally understand where you're coming from. Congratulations on eight great years! I've backed off Facebook in lieu of Instagram so maybe I'll see you there at some point :)

  24. Congratulations Sam on eight wonderful years of My Carolina Kitchen. When I started blogging some 6 years ago, this was one of the first blogs that I would visit. You have been a role model for me and I will surely miss your blog, but will keep up with you on Face Book. Thank you for all the years of giving us wonderful travels and recipes, you are the greatest and I wish you the very best!
    Miz Helen

  25. Hello Sam,
    I shall miss your posts. I do understand.
    Wishing you a blessed Thanksgiving and fondest wishes

    Helen xx

  26. Sam, I thought I had already posted on this last blog entry! You know you will be missed here by all of us. We did start blogging at about the same time. Your professionalism and great photos ( Thanks Meakin) plus inspired recipes have been such a part of my weekly feed, that it will be hard to give them up. But I hope our friendship will endure. It has been such a pleasure knowing you and we plan on keeping it up. Love to you both.

  27. Take care and congratulations on 8 years :)

  28. I just put away my pen and you are the first person I thought of . Yes eight years is a long time for both of us even though I have to say it's been fun and most rewarding. I will keep track of you on FB and hope our friendship will continue for a long time. You know how to reach me. Merry Christmas and all the best for the new year. J


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