Home » a little Catch-UP: Cooking through Ree’s Frontier

a little Catch-UP: Cooking through Ree’s Frontier

Oh my where do the time go?  So here’s what I’ve been cooking from The Pioneer Womans second cook book, Food from my Frontier.  If you are new and wondering what the heck I’m talking about right now then you might want to catch up here first.  And yes if you are wondering if I’m wearing my sssta-retchy pants right now…yes!…black ones, is there any other color?


Cooking through Ree’s frontier means butter….more butter, and did I mention that cooking through The Pioneer Woman Cooks involves butter?  A girl after my heart.  Fire up the stove and lets melt some bud-ah, in our stretchee punts.



If for no other reason than to have the recipe for Restaurant Style Salsa, you must have this cookbook!  I have made this so many times, I don’t even look at the recipe any more.  It’s perfect and lovely, and I could drink it….but we’ll get to the drink at the end.

Restaurant Style Salsa two thumbs up.

I grew up on Spanish Rice…at least that’s what my Mom called it.  Ree calls hers Mexican Rice.  I have to say I have tried this recipe two other times, and it turned out gloppy and sticky, but this time it turned out perfect. My family loved it!


Mexican Rice two stubby digits up. 

Drool…slurp….Quesadillas de Camarones are perfection, for me any way.  I loved everything about this recipe.  It was easy, and it looks so purdy.  But my kiddos had a complaint about it, I’ll tell you about that in a minute.  For now let us just savor the yumminess of this quesadilla…full of spicy shrimp, peppers, and cheese.  Come to momma.


Quesadillas De Camarones received thumbs up from me and Kenny, but me kiddos had some complaints.

A new ingredient.  I love this stuff.  I was worried that my grocery store would not have it.  But low and behold they carry it.  The late Fred Meijer, may he rest in peace, was saying “oh ye of little faith”.  It just adds that extra hutz-pah to any Mexican dish.



This would be the Barbecue Chicken And Pineapple Quesadilla.  I felt like Dora the Explorer while eating this…I kept repeating Yum Yum Yum.  I made the Quesadillas de Camarones the same night and had my in-laws over for a little QuesadillAH par-TAY.

The adults in the room gave Barbecue Chicken and Pineapple Quesadillas two thumbs up, kiddos said, “too much stuff”.

So here’s the SCOOP: my kiddos were super excited when I started Cooking through Ree’s Frontier, but now 26 recipes into it they are whining….just like before.  The names haven’t started yet, but oh Ree I’m sorry to say I’m afeeerd it’s comin’ girlfrand.   The peppers are what started it.  So far many of the recipes I have picked have included peppers.  Apparently my family is not fans of  “the peppah”.  So there you have it!  I had one reader ask, “how do you handle it when there’s a recipe you know your family won’t eat?”.  Answer to that is I have made a smaller portion, but mostly I say TOUGH TOOKIES!  Eat whats on the table and stop your whinin’.   But I did take a little break from cooking from The Pioneer Woman cooks, and I think when I start back up we will steer clear of recipes including peppers….at least for now.




White Chicken Enchiladas, although they contained peppers they were a hit.  There where no leftovers this night.  Can I get an Amen!  I did see a couple peppers picked out off to the side of a few plates….oh well!  Whatcha gonna do?


White Chicken Enchiladas received two thumbs way up. 

I will just add that there ain’t no way this recipe is making it into anyones diet plan.  HOLY CRAP 1 1/2 cups of heavy cream, plus sour cream, and cheese, lots and lots of cheese.  NO wonder these enchiladas are so good!   2words…stretchy pants.



Mushrooms how I love thee let me count the ways……

Unfortunately my family does not feel the same way.  When I first met my husband he wouldn’t let a mushroom anywhere near his precious lips.  I have reformed the man….in more ways than I dare say in this post, but let’s just say he is a fungi eater now….I did not say fungi lover…just fungi eater.   But for that I am thankful.  So although I was super excited about this next recipe, I was afraid once again that I was going to be met with a heap-O-complaining.


Fancy Mac and Cheese

The clouds cleared and the Heavens rejoiced…..this Mac and Cheese is to be revered.  Nuff said polka dot period. Well maybe I do just need to clarify that I think the bacon is what won my family over….and the fact that I only put mushrooms on one side of the dish….I know I talk a tough talk, but I am a softy. Shush now!


Fancy Mac and Cheese two short phalanges up.

Peach Whiskey Chicken this recipe received rave reviews by one and all!  It is so easy.  Ree is right, this is “a fabulous throw-together meal” for any night of the week or  for dinner guest.  It’s easy and elegant and super delicious.  Very impressive.  Only complaint was 12 chicken legs were not enough for my piggly wigglies!  Well, and the fact that it emptied my bottle of Jim Beam…sheesh make me look like a drunkard.


Peach Whiskey Chicken two thumbs up.

Prepping for Chicken Parmesan.

I once dated a guy, who’s mom mispronounced parmesan.  Well, that actually is being kind.  She massacred the word.  And to this day I cannot say it, eat it, or look at it with out hearing that woman’s voice saying par-meee-zi-anne.  Ugh…it’s weird how some things stick with you.


Oh it tis a happy day when you put this on the table.  Chicken Parmesan is dinner perfection.  My Kenny loved this, just like MM.  Hey Ree not only do you and I have loads in common, but our honey buns both love Chicken Parmesan!

Chicken Parmesan was a two thumbs up from my sweet cheeks, and the rest followed suit with a MMmmm-yum


Corn Chowder 

I was the only one that loved this chowder.  I leee-uvd it.  So as the saying goes, “more for me”.  My family ended up eating cereal.  They all took the courtesy taste, and then headed for the pantry.  Ken turned up is nose, when he rolled in at midnight and said, “nahw I’ll have cereal, that’ll give me gas.”.  Since when is my husband worried about gas?  What-ev.  More for me.  Ree’s Corn Chowder is  sweet and spicy and creamy.

Two thumbs way up from Moi, but sorry to say this was a thumbs down from the fam-bah-lee.



So now, before the finale, I just have to prod and poke you a little Ree my Dear.  Are you coming to West Michigan or what?  Because when you do, and you notice I say when you do…I really hope you do your book signing at Schuler Books & Music in Grand Rapids. It’s lovely, and quaint, but large enough to hold the crowds you will surely attract, and they have a yummy little cafe.  So Big D took this picture and put it on Instagram and I Twittered you about it. I know, I know,  you said you’ve been a bad twitter reader, I’m sure you missed it.  But here it is…your invitation (again) to come to G.R..  We will show you a good time girlfriend.  I promise you that!  Just give me a heads up please, so I don’t go making plans to be out of town or something crazy.


Bloody Mary’s

Now let it be known…. that I never said that I would not, on occasion, veer from the written recipe.  And in this case I knew that P-dub would be all about my veering off on to Bacon Boulevard.   Now as you might suspect I did not feed these to my kiddos for dinner, but I did serve one up to my gal Heather poolside one morning for breakfast in Florida.  WOW and OOO-DOGGIE, these were good, I did dump a little pickle juice in there too….eeeee ya, couldn’t help myself.

Ree’s Bloody Marys received two thumbs, as well as ten toes up.  We were setting in beach chairs so of course our toes were up…pointing straight at the sun.


Remember if you use the Instagram App you can follow me at Eat2gather and get a preview of what I’m cooking, or follow me on Twitter, because I always post my Instagram #cookingthrureesfrontier photos to Twitter too!  Or if you don’t Tweet and you don’t use Instagram, well then surely you have a Facebook, where you can follow this cooking adventure.  Well, if you don’t do any of those, but you are reading this you must have a computer so then you can surely subscribe to my RSS feed, or subscribe via Email up yonder in the sidebar there under my Welcome.

COME ON NOW be a follower!  There’s alot more to come!




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  1. Just stumbled on your website- I wonder if we know the same person- I have been saying “par-mee-zee-an” for years after I had a friend who pronounced it that way and it has stuck with me for years. So much so, that my kids actually thought that was the correct pronunciation.

    1. She will come…eventually I will wear her down and she will come. I just hope I don’t have a full head of grey hair when she does…and a cane, and dentures ; ) Thanks for stopping by!

  2. I have the cookbook ready to go but no recipes completed yet. Although some of the “old standards” from PW’s blog I have made before like Chicken Parmesan. You totally inspired me to at least tackle 26 recipes! My family is good about peppers. We’ll see how it goes. I’ll be following your blog now. Love your home cooking style.
    @katpinke (Twitter and Instagram)

  3. Nothing beats a great recipe from Ree, unless it’s an even greater Bloody Mary!! And yes, P-Dub needs to come to Michigan. When she sees Lake Michigan, she’ll think she’s @ the ocean and GR rocks-so many sights to see and places to go. Come on girl–come to Michigan for a book signing, it’s not scary like the news media portrays it…it’s BEAUTIFUL!

    1. Oh my garshk it’s so not scary…I hope she doesn’t think its scary. She’s comin’, mark my word we will get that Lady to GR, Meechigan!

  4. Ohhhh you make it all sound so fun and nummy! I’m so sad that I just started counting calories for the summer 🙁 That chicken enchilada looks to die for. Ree will be my undoing with all her plated heaven.

  5. It would be so awesome if Ree came to Grand Rapids! I don’t know if this is good or bad, but they have her newest cookbook at Costco for $16 or $17 dollars. (I had purchased mine earlier). Here is what I have made so far: Pizza dough (I use this recipe all the time!), Thai chicken pizza (ended up purchasing the peanut sauce), Spicy Dr. Pepper (diet coke) pulled pork, White chicken enchiladas (Yummy, a little extra work, very rich sauce – ended up being able to freeze 1/2 of them for another meal), Corn casserole with peppers, Pots de Creme (made this at school with my students for Valentine’s day), and the Knock You Naked Brownies. I’m planning on making the Pasta with Tomato Cream sauce tomorrow night (will try throwing in a little pesto and chicken). That is all for now!

    1. Kim,
      I will be shouting it from the rooftops, when I find out that she’s coming to town for sure. You will probably be able to hear me in Hudsonville for sure!!! Wow you’ve been busy too. I think I might have a what have you cooked from PW’s cookbook linkup for my next book giveaway. So surprised Costco has it already and so cheap. I hear you on the enchiladas, I thought they could be way easier and much less fattening….but Oh they were good!
      xoxo Sheila xoxox

    1. Ok yes! and yes again, you would definitely be driving your hiney up here for a girls PW getaway. I’m gonna email here right now!

  6. Ha! I live in wyoming, mi and would so LOVELOVELOVE her to come here. That schulers books us less than 10 minutes from my house! Please Ree? Pretty please with Bacon sprinkled on top?

    1. Melle, Darlin you are a Michigan Girl! Yes we need to drag her purdy hiney up here!! Also, you need to send me your full name and address so I can send you your Hip Hostess Apron!! You won! Did you get my email? xoxox Sheila

      1. Ooh ! I just emailed you! I hadn’t seen an email from and the post where I entered for the apron was the last one that came thru my email. 🙁 not sure why yahoo is being a spaz but I’m resubbing using my gmail address (where I emailed you from) and hopefully won’t miss any more posts!

  7. Cooking fool…that’s now what I am going to call you!!!

    Shall I start stalking our dear friend P-Dub about coming to GR or will that make you a bit nervous…I don’t want cause you undue stress or the need for extra under arm powder!!!

  8. Hey Girl! Cannot wait to catch up with you now that Spring Break vacay is over. I am in awe…. you’ve been cooking up a delicious storm!!! We need to live closer to one another. 🙂 Seriously, this all looks amazing. You know my deep love for all Mexican food and Mac ‘n Cheese. I’m drooling. Love ya!