simple flavors jamming together

3 Sep

This week has been all about discovering what I do and do not love, so naturally, I decided to work with some simple flavors and a big fat grill today. It’s been an interesting week looking for a new job. I went on random interviews and loved all of them, but the choice right now is, what do I want to do. Right now, I’m not sure, so experimenting in the kitchen gave my mind some time to relax from graduate school and job hunting.

I had a massive batch of super ripe strawberries that needed to be used, so I decided to hop over to Whole Foods and get some pectin and jar up some yummy jam, but make sure that it was simple and wholesome. I never realized how easy it is to make jam! Can you believe from masher to jar it took about a half hour!? So simple. For some reason I always thought jam was a lengthy process. Super jazzed that it was so quick and easy.

For dinner, I decided to go with some simple flavors. I had chicken drummies (which also is what we call Dexter Doodle Puppy) in the freezer from U.S. Wellness Meats. I don’t know if you’ve heard of U.S. Wellness meats, but they are grass fed yumminess that you order online and the prices are unbelievable!

I picked up some sweet potatoes, for a healthy super food starch and hericot vert. I love hericot vert (for those that need the translation, hericot vert are green beans, and yummy ones at that). So here is my homage to simple flavors on the grill. By the way, sweet potato is a GREAT superfood for puppies and they gobble it up!



  • two large pints of strawberries
  • 2 tablespoons of honey
  • 3/4 cup sugar in the raw
  • 1.5 tablespoons pectic (I got the all natural, no preservative, no sugars pectin from Whole Foods)
  • 1 orange
  • 1 lemon

Easy Peasy:

Wash and hull your strawberries. Take your orange and slice out the sections. Pour the strawberries and oranges in a large dutch oven. Turn the heat on medium to warm up the berries/oranges and start mashing away! Mash to your heart’s desire. Some like chunky jam and some like smoother jam. Once they are all mashed, turn the heat up to high and mix in the honey and sugar and mix until well incorporated and dissolved. Add pectic and bring to a boil. Boil all together for 2 minutes on high, stirring occasionally. Turn the heat off, ladle into your jars, cap the jars, let them sit until at room temperature and you’re done! You’ll hear  a pop after about a half hour meaning that the jars sealed. This makes about 1.5 jars of jam, or 2 small jars. You can put it in the fridge and use it over the next few weeks. YUM!


Ingredients for sweet potato mash:

  • 3 large sweet potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon grass fed butter (Kerrygold or regular butter if you aren’t into grass fed)

HEAT UP THAT GRILL! Turn the grill and place it on high. Take the three sweet potatoes, prick them with a fork and wrap them in foil. Place on high heating grill for 1 hour. These are what take the most time. The drummies and sweet potatoes will cook together at one point, so the rest of the steps are below.

Ingredients for chicken drummies:

  • 6 chicken drummies
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup balsamic
  • 1 tablespoon parsley
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried onion
  • 1 tablespoon oregano

Ingredients for hericot vert:

  • hericot vert, about 50 beans, or a small bag
  • 1 tablespoon stone ground mustard
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • splash of balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste

Take a gallon sized large plastic bag and pour in the chicken drummies. Pour in all of the ingredients listed above; olive oil, salt, pepper, dried onion, oregano, parsley, balsamic and work for a couple minutes so it is all mixed well and coating the chicken. Place in a glass bowl in your fridge, or if cooking soon, place on your counter for the meat to marinate at room temperature for at least an hour. If placing in fridge, it can marinate for up to 24 hours.

After the sweet potatoes have cooked for about 45 minutes, place the chicken drummies on the grill. They take about 8 minutes on each side, but you can determine based on your grill temp since this is a dark meat. Your grill should be placed at medium heat now. Therefore, the sweet potatoes can still cook and the drummies can cook evenly. Pour the leftover marinade on the drummies and save a bit for when you turn the drummies over.

After about 8 minutes, turn the drummies and pour on the rest of the marinade. Take off your sweet potatoes and set them to cool. Once the sweet potatoes are cool, peel off the skin and cut off the nubby ends. Mash the sweet potatoes with a fork and add the butter, salt, pepper and honey. Cover with foil to stay warm while the hericot very cook.

Take the drummies off of the grill and place under a foil tent to finish steaming and stay warm. To prep hericot vert, wash and cut off the ends. place on foil, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper, balsamic and a nice lump of stone ground mustard. Pack them all up in the foil and place on grill. These take only about 6 minutes. Carefully open up the packet and mix the green beans so that the warm mustard coats them all. I like my hericot very al dente, where they are bright green and hot, yet not fully cooked so they have a nice snap!



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