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Best Meatloaf in the Whole Wide World!

Reviewed: Jan. 22, 2014
This was very flavorful and good, but I don't know if I would rank it "the best". However, it is definitely approved by a 5 year old; my husband said the meat was good, but the topping was a little too sweet for him. Here's a small tip for anyone who is in a hurry...instead of preparing the topping first, start by preparing the meat first, so that while the meat is in the oven for 30 min, THEN you can be multi-tasking and mixing the topping. It saved me several minutes! Also, I think that next time, I would put the bacon in the meat, rather than on top. The flavor of the bacon got completely lost in all of the sweetness. Overall it was a fun little recipe to try. Thanks!
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

Savory Onion Bread

Reviewed: Jan. 7, 2014
I baked this bread this past Saturday, and it came out great. I made it according to the recipe, with no mods, and my wife and I loved it. I used it in an appetizer... sliced long slices of the bread, buttered both sides and toasted in a stovetop pan, then coated with brown mustard, layered thinly sliced roast beef on it, and topped with salt, freshly ground black pepper, and provolone cheese. It also went well with home-made potato soup. Will definitely make this again!
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Photo by HongKongCV

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Living In: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

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Easy Turkey Gravy

Reviewed: Dec. 6, 2013
I wasn't very impressed. I didn't have turkey drippings, so I bought the unsalted chicken stock from the grocery store (which maybe that is where I went wrong). I followed the recipe exactly, and even added the seasoned salt, since I did use the unsalted stock. The flavor was ok, but it was as thin as water, and the color wasn't impressive. I stood there and stirred forever, and finally pulled out the corn starch, and THAT didn't even thicken it up to a normal consistency. I ended up putting it on the table anyway for the whole family, and I am the only person that tried it. The appearance must have turned everyone else off. Oh well.
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

Awesome Sausage, Apple and Cranberry Stuffing

Reviewed: Dec. 6, 2013
The flavor of this recipe is amazing. I followed the recipe, using recommendations from the reviewers. I will be making this again, but next time, I may do a few things different. My biggest issue with it was the consistency...there is so much going on, such as meat, cranberries, bread,etc, that it just kind of crumbled into a not so "stuffing-like" mixture of stuff. I don't want to remove any of the flavors, but next time, I may increase the bread in order to see if I can make it into a more traditional consistency. Secondly, the liver got lost in all of the flavors, so I don't think it is necessary. I will leave it out next time. As reviewers suggested, I tried sourdough bread, which was awesome; I bought the sage sausage, so I decreased the real sage by 1/2tsp, and I added pecans to the mix. Since I didn't have a turkey to stuff, I poured 2 and 3/4cups of turkey stock over the mixture and cooked for 40 min covered at 350 and then an additional 20 min uncovered. I got rave compliments. This is my new go-to recipe for stuffing!
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

Curry Stand Chicken Tikka Masala Sauce

Reviewed: Dec. 5, 2013
This is a great recipe. Add or delete to your taste, but I love it as is. I also use it with chickpeas instead of chicken for a great vegetarian meal.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Living In: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

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Slow Cooker Chicken and Dumplings

Reviewed: Nov. 12, 2013
Made this for dinner last night. It was ok and everyone ate it, but the biscuits didn't cook like dumplings in this recipe. Also, I would have to use low sodium soup because it was quite salty. I will modify and try again.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Ferndale, Michigan, USA
Living In: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

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Hawaiian Chicken Kabobs

Reviewed: Oct. 10, 2013
Maybe I'm just not a fan of Hawaiian chicken, but I didn't really care for this dish. I followed the recipe, and even used the "good" sherry. The marinade flavor was just ok. As long as I took a bite of pineapple with the meat, I liked it better, but without the pineapple, it was just ok.
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

Turkey Reuben Burgers

Reviewed: Sep. 27, 2013
The idea is right, but it needs a bit of work to be a 5 star recipe. As a complete sandwich, the flavor is pretty good, but the meat by itself is so bland. I did not taste a bit of dressing, and the bread crumbs made the consistency very strange. If I did this again, I would omit the Italian breadcrumbs completely, but maybe add some Italian seasonings and a bit of salt to give the meat some flavor. Adding additional dressing onto the top of the sandwich would be much more flavorful as well because I didn't taste any of it in the meat. However, even though it was bland, the grilled onions, sauerkraut, and rye bread were flavorful enough to make up for it. Also, I think Swiss cheese is a better fit, since this is supposed to mimic the Reuben. Overall, it was an OK recipe, but I think with some work, this could turn into a really yummy sandwich!
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

The Best Meatloaf I've Ever Made

Reviewed: Sep. 11, 2013
I liked this recipe, my family liked it too, but it didn't have the "wow" factor that I was expecting, based on the many reviews. It was very flavorful, and if you are looking for a nice standard meatloaf, this would be a good choice. I followed the recipe exactly, and my only reservation was at the very last step because it seemed so soupy that pouring milk into the mixture didn't seem practical. I double and triple checked the proportions to make sure that I didn't make a mistake, but everything I did looked correct. I ended up putting a bunch more bread crumbs in to make it thicker, and ended up not using the milk after all (which I don't think would have affected the taste anyway). The cooking times were perfect for this recipe. Overall, I think it is a nicely flavored meatloaf, but I may continue looking for others that give me that "wow" factor.
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

Absolute Best Liver and Onions

Reviewed: Sep. 10, 2013
This tasted EXACTLY like my grandmother's recipe that I grew up on a kid. This is my first time ever making liver and onions, and I am extremely excited that it turned out so well. I followed the recipe exactly, with the exception that I had halved the recipe for my family, and then accidentally forgot to half the amount of butter for the onions, but the buttery onions were delicious!!! I soaked the liver in whole milk for a little over an hour, and it had a pleasant, but not overwhelming "livery" taste. The only other thing that I love putting on my liver is bacon because it gives that extra bit of saltiness, and compliments it so well. Because it is not a very healthy dish, we don't eat it often, but I love having it for a special treat.
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

Pupusas de Queso (Cheese-Stuffed Tortillas)

Reviewed: Sep. 3, 2013
I totally agree with all of the other reviewers that making pupusas must be an art. I attempted, and my results weren't very pretty. Plus, I just don't think I am that big of a fan in general. I gave it a try because my son was begging, and even he didn't want to eat them in the end. He said that they don't taste like what he gets in restaurants.
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

Curtido (El Salvadoran Cabbage Salad)

Reviewed: Sep. 3, 2013
I've only had curtido once years ago, so I don't remember what it's actually "supposed" to taste like, but my half Salvadorian son was begging for pupusas, so I gave it a try. I followed this recipe exactly, and I also prepped it the day before for maximum flavor. My biggest comment is that the oregano was very overpowering, but maybe it is supposed to be that way. Overall, it was ok, but I wasn't overly impressed.
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA
Photo by HongKongCV

Serbian Pork and Beef Casserole

Reviewed: Aug. 12, 2013
Cooked this last night, and though it tasted surprisingly good for so few spices, there were problems. As a note, definitely use two onions... I used only one (two seemed a lot) and the dish could use the second onion. The rice was al dente... crunchy in spots. Next time I will put foil on it at least for the first 30 minutes or so to help the rice cook... it took the full 45 minutes to cook as it was. Also, the recipe would not fit in my 2-quart casserole dish... you'll need at least a 3-quart. I ended up making it in a 9x11 baking dish. Finally, though the recipe was tasty enough, it lacked any distinctive zing that would have made it "I-want-that-again-soon" tasty. Next time I will add a second can of sauerkraut, and substitute a cup of red wine, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, or even Dale's steak seasoning sauce for 1-cup of the chicken broth. This is a good, tasty, comfort-food casserole just waiting to be kicked up a notch. I'll keep working on it, because I think it has potential.
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Photo by HongKongCV

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Living In: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

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Tomato Cucumber Salad II

Reviewed: Aug. 4, 2013
Just like many other people, I added dill and white wine vinegar to this recipe to make it good. It is pretty hard to give the recipe as it is a good rating, because really it is very bland without these additions. I used yellow pear tomatoes because that is what i had on hand, and not even a quarter of a red onion, because unless you serve it immediately and there are no leftovers, the onion permeates the whole dish, making it taste VERY strongly of onion.
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA
Living In: Louisville, Kentucky, USA

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Italian Breaded Pork Chops

Reviewed: Jul. 31, 2013
Quick and tasty! Only took 18 minutes in the oven @ 350 for the pork to reach 145*. Will definitely make again.
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Photo by Sukey

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA
Living In: Mahtomedi, Minnesota, USA

Smooth Sweet Tea

Reviewed: Jul. 23, 2013
I wanted to see how close this tea was to the tea that I was raised on in Alabama. I was very pleasantly surprised. The proportions of ingredients are perfect. It's definitely sweet, without being painfully sweet. It's the perfect drink to sip on while you are sitting on the front porch! My 5 year old son tried it, and LOVED it! You made this Alabama girl proud! Thanks for the recipe!!!
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

Yellow Squash Casserole

Reviewed: Jul. 15, 2013
Like many other reviewers I felt the need to add more squash... like 2 more cups, in fact. Also more cheese, and onion, and crackers for that matter. It certainly would NOT have filled a 9X13 if I hadn't. I kicked up the seasoning a notch and added a few diced jalapenos from our garden. I really like that you don't boil everything to death in this recipe, and the light saute takes so much less time than the boiling aspect. Also, if you add the extra portions of those ingredients that I mentioned, the casserole needs to cook for about 40 minutes, not 25.
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA
Living In: Louisville, Kentucky, USA

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HERDEZ® Creamy Tomatillo Avocado Salsa

Reviewed: Jul. 9, 2013
When I saw this recipe posted on the main page, I was so intrigued that I went to the store, bought the ingredients and made it that night. It took me a few minutes to find the cooking sauce because I was just overlooking it among all of the salsas, but I eventually found it in the Hispanic foods section in Safeway. I thought it was really good, and very easy to prepare. It had a very small bit of spiciness to it, and I knew my husband liked a bit more of a kick, so I added a touch of cayenne pepper to it. I made tostadas, and poured the sauce over the top. So good. Honestly, I thought my husband would rave over it a bit more than he actually did, but he did mention that he liked it. We have a lot of it left over, so I'm going to use the rest as a dip.
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

Baked Ziti I

Reviewed: Jul. 5, 2013
I couldn't find Ziti pasta in the store, so the closest I came up with was Rigatoni. Other than that, I followed the recipe exactly and it was perfect! I had cooked it with intentions of having left overs for a little while, but my husband devoured so much of it, that we barely had any leftovers for the following day! :) He is already asking for me to bake it again! This was such an easy dish to prepare, and it is one that is definitely good to present to guests. Thanks for the great recipe! :)
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

Three Berry Pie

Reviewed: Jul. 1, 2013
This review is only based on the pie filling and cooking times/temp. This is the first berry pie that I have ever made. It was AMAZING and it was so simplistic! I loved the fact that there was only 1/2 of sugar to 4.5 cups of berries. The consistency was perfect, the cooking time was great. I had rave reviews in my home! My husband said it's the best berry pie he has ever tasted. I went easy this time(because it was 100 degrees in our house), and used a pre-made pie crust and did latice work with the second pre-made pie crust, but next time, I will have to give this pie crust recipe a try as well. Thanks for the great recipe!!!
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Photo by slfortson

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Montgomery, Alabama, USA

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