Category: <span>Josmo’s Cafe</span>

Oven Baked Chicken Fajitas

My friend Esty always finds the yummiest and easiest recipes that can serve a crowd! This one is from


  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes with green chilies (Rotel)
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 12 flour tortillas
  • Toppings such as cheese, sour cream, and guacamole – if desired

*** For an extra-easy version, substitute McCormick Fajita seasoning package for all the spices.


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place chicken strips in a greased 13×9 baking dish.
  2. In a small bowl combine the oil, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, dried oregano, and salt.
  3. Drizzle the spice mixture over the chicken and stir to coat.
  4. Next add the tomatoes, peppers, and onions to the dish and stir to combine.
  5. Bake uncovered for 30-35 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender.
  6. Serve on tortillas with desired toppings.

Blueberry French Toast

This is a perfect dish for a weekend crowd. Assemble the dish the night before and refrigerate. Remove from the fridge and preheat the oven when you pour your first cup of coffee. 30 minutes later, put it in to bake. The smell will get your guests out of bed and ready for a feast! While it’s baking, make the fresh blueberry sauce. You may want to double the sauce recipe – it’s that good!

12 slices day-old white bread, crusts removed

2 packages (8 oz each) cream cheese

1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

12 eggs

2 cups milk

1/3 cup maple syrup


1 cup sugar

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1 cup water

1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

1 tablespoon butter

·   Cut bread into 1 inch cubes; place half in a greased 13×9 inch x2 inch baking dish.  Cut cream cheese into 1 inch cubes; place over bread.  Top with blueberries and remaining bread cubes.

·    In a large bowl, beat eggs.  Add milk and syrup; mix well.  Pour over bread mixture.  Cover and refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.

·   Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking.  Cover and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.  Uncover; bake 25 – 30 minutes longer or until golden brown and center is set.

·    In a small saucepan, combine sugar, cornstarch and water until smooth.  Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook and stir for 3 minutes.  Stir in blueberries; reduce heat.  Simmer for 8-10 minutes or until berries have burst.  Stir in butter until melted.  Serve with French toast.


Yield 6-8 servings (1 ¾ cups sauce)

Emily’s Gazpacho

4 medium tomatoes, seeded and chopped

1 small cucumber, seeded and chopped

1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped

½ green bell pepper, chopped

½ red bell pepper, chopped

½ small red onion, chopped

½ tsp garlic powder or 1 clove fresh minced garlic

3 T flat leaf parsley, chopped

3 T fresh basil, chopped

2 cups tomato juice

2 teaspoons beef bouillon granules

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp ground pepper

2 T Worcestershire sauce

1 T vinegar

6 dashes Tabasco


In a food processor, puree tomatoes, cucumber, peppers, garlic, parsley, and basil about 30-60 seconds.


Add the rest of the ingredients. Pulse a few times to mix well.


Pour into a covered container, preferably glass, and chill several hours.


Serve with a dollop of sour cream on top. Stir it in and enjoy!


Makes 4 servings.

Hidden Valley Oyster Crackers

 Submitted By:
Hidden Valley ® Ranch

Prep Time:

10 Minutes

Cook Time:

20 Minutes

Ready In:

30 Minutes



“Oyster crackers are baked with a dusting of Hidden
Valley® Original Ranch® Seasoning Mix, dill, and other
optional spices until golden brown for an easy, crispy


1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 (16 ounce) box oyster crackers

1 (1 ounce) packet Hidden Valley®

Original Ranch® Salad Dressing &

Seasoning Mix

1/2 teaspoon dill weed

1/4 teaspoon lemon pepper or garlic

powder (optional)



Place crackers in a gallon-size Glad-Lock®
Zipper ™ Storage Bag. Pour oil over
crackers; seal bag and toss to coat.


Add dressing mix and spice; seal bag and
toss again until coated.


Bake on ungreased baking sheet at 250
degrees F for 15 to 20 minutes or until
golden brown.


Printed from 2/23/2013

Heavenly Homemade Onion Soup

I have yet to figure out how to eat onion soup in public without getting it all over me, so it’s a perfect dish to have at our home-based Josmo’s Cafe!

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 4 sweet onions, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tsp ground thyme
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2-3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 quarts beef broth – store bought
  • 1 baguette, sliced
  • 1/2 pound Gruyere cheese

Melt the stick of butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions,  garlic, thyme, and salt and pepper and slowly cook until the onions are very soft and caramelized, about 25 minutes, watching carefully and stirring often.

Add the wine, bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer until the wine has evaporated and the onions are almost dry, about 5 minutes. Dust the onions with the flour and give them a stir. Turn the heat down to medium low so the flour doesn’t burn, and cook for 10 minutes to cook out the raw flour taste. Now add the beef broth, bring the soup back to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Cheese toast – here’s an easy way to make the cheese toast to float on top.  Using a cheese slicer for extra thin slices, slice the Gruyere cheese. Do not use a substitute cheese. Gruyere is what makes it so good. Place the thinly sliced cheese on the bread and toast it in a toaster oven or under the broiler until lightly brown and bubbly.

Ladle the soup in bowls and place the cheese toast on top. Serve extra cheese toast on the side, if desired.


Kathy’s Cowboy Salsa

Football season calls for healthy munchies to feed a crowd!

There are many variations of Cowboy Salsa, but when my cousin Kathy served this to us, John and I quickly deemed this our favorite.  There are no tomatoes so it’s not messy to eat and no cilantro which John doesn’t care for.  Enjoy!

Mix together:

1 can pinto beans – rinsed and drained
1 can black-eyed peas – rinsed and drained
1 can black beans – rinsed and drained
1 can shoe peg corn – drained
1 can regular corn – drained
1 jar small pimentos – drained and chopped


1/2 cup chopped red onion

1 large avocado – peeled and diced
2 tablespoons (or to taste) jalapeño peppers (optional)
4 chopped green onions
1/2 chopped yellow bell pepper
1/2 chopped red bell pepper
1/2 chopped green bell pepper
3 ribs chopped celery


3/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1/2 cup sugar (more or less to taste)
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

In a saucepan, bring dressing ingredients to a boil. Let it cool. Pour over all drained beans and vegetables. Mix well and chill.

Serve with Scoops chips.

Makes a ton and keeps well in the fridge for several days.

Dill Pickle Dip

When I read the recipe in the Charlotte Observer, I thought yuk!  Two days later, our friends Mary Beth and Rick came to dinner and brought the dip. MB is a southern gal and thought it sounded great. It was!!

FYI, MB modified the recipe using only 1 cup of dill pickles and added 1/4 tsp of fresh ground pepper.

From “The Southern Bite Cookbook,” by Stacey Little (Thomas Nelson, $24.99).

1 1/2 cups finely diced kosher dill pickles

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 to 4 tablespoons pickle juice

Crackers, potato chips or vegetables for serving

Combine the pickles, cream cheese, garlic powder and salt in a medium bowl. Gradually whisk in the pickle juice to get to a dipping consistency. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes. Serve chilled with crackers, chips or raw vegetables for dipping.

Yield: About 2 cups.

Cheese Pastry Hors D’Oeuvres

These rich and pretty hot hors d’oeuvres are always a hit!  Make them ahead and freeze unbaked. Directions below to defrost and bake.

2 1/2 cups flour

1 cup butter – softened

1 cup sour cream

Seasoned salt


3 cups shredded orange Cheddar cheese – best if shredded right before using



Combine flour, butter, and sour cream in bowl and mix. Divide into 4 portions. Wrap and chill for several hours or overnight.

Roll out one at a time on floured surface to 12″x6″ rectangle. Sprinkle surface with seasoned salt and pepper, then with 3/4 cup cheese.

Starting with 12″ side, roll up jelly-roll style. Seal edges and ends. (At this point, you can freeze by wrapping each roll separately in plastic wrap. To defrost, take out roll and let defrost in refrigerator. Proceed with recipe.)

Place seam down on ungreased cookie sheet. Cut each roll halfway through at 1″ intervals. Sprinkle with paprika.

Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes until light-golden brown.

Once out of the oven, cut each roll through at the 1″ intervals. Serve immediately.

Makes 48 pastries.


Recipe from Three Rivers Cookbook. 1973. Published by Child Health Association of Sewickley, Inc.

Josmo’s Cosmo

Josmo’s Cosmos

Coat the rim of 4 Cosmo glasses with lemon and chill


16 oz Absolut Citron Vodka

8 oz Triple Sec

4 oz White Cranberry Juice

Juice of 1 lime

To Serve

Shake with finely crushed ice

Allow to sit 5 minutes

Serve in frosted glass with a twist of lemon

Twist the lemon over the glass for an added spritz of flavor

Banana Cream Pie

One of John’s favorite desserts is Banana Cream Pie. After years of requests, I finally baked him one. I cheated a bit and used a Harris Teeter refrigerator pie crust. Other than that, it was made from scratch. I hadn’t scalded milk, made fresh meringue, or used my double boiler in years. It was great fun! The pie was as delicious as it looks.

The recipe is from my favorite pie cookbook. The Southern Heritage Pies and Pastry Cookbook by Oxmoor House, Birmingham, AL. 1984

1/3 cup cornstarch

2/3 cup sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 cups milk, scalded

3 eggs, separated

2 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 large ripe banana, peeled and sliced ( I used two bananas)

1 baked (9-inch) pastry shell

2 tablespoons sugar

Combine cornstarch, 2/3 cup sugar, and salt in top of a double boiler; mix well. Gradually add scalded milk; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, just until thickened.

Beat egg yolks until thick and lemon colored. Stir one-fourth hot mixture into yolks; add to remaining hot mixture, stirring constantly. Cook an additional 2 minutes or until thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat; stir in butter and vanilla.

Place banana slices in pastry shell. Pour filling over top.

Beat egg whites (at room temperature) until soft peaks form; gradually add 2 tablespoons sugar, and continue beating until stiff peaks form. Spread meringue over filling, sealing to edge of pastry. Bake at 350° for 5 minutes or until meringue is golden brown. Serve pie warm or chilled.