Creole Seasoned Brown Sugar Pecan Crusted Baked Tilapia

Creole Seasoned Brown Sugar Pecan Crusted Baked Tilapia.  Now that I have your attention, let me share with you this delicious recipe developed in the Places In The Home test kitchen over this past Mardi Gras celebration weekend.  In this the season of crawfish, Mardi Gras and Lent, fish recipes are in the menu spotlight.  Mama Places In The Home (my mother) picked up a 2lb. bag of Tilapia fillets at our Walmart Neighborhood Market Friday afternoon, and promptly placed her order for fish.

tilapia fillets

Dave the Builder requested potatoes in cream sauce topped with fresh parsley, and my brother placed his order for my family famous creamy coleslaw.  I do like a now we’re cooking weekend.

A bag of pecans and a bag of walnuts left over from holiday baking started the wheels of recipe development turning.  Creole seasoning is always on hand, and everything is better with brown sugar on it. Baking fish, chicken, chops, etc… is healthier not to mention I can’t stand the smell of fried foods in the house.  I contemplated soaking the fish in buttermilk, mustard and Tabasco, but will keep that flavor key exclusive to my catfish recipe.  Traditional bread crumbs, fresh lemon slices and fresh chopped parsley round out the ingredient list.

tilapia on plate (1)

Creole Seasoned Brown Sugar Pecan Crusted Baked Tilapia


2 pound bag (approximately 9 fillets)

1½ cups traditional bread crumbs

¼ cup brown sugar

1 Tablespoon Creole seasoning (see recipe below)

1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts, finely chopped

2 sticks butter

2 lemons, sliced

½ cup chopped fresh parsley


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  In a baking dish, stir together the breadcrumbs, chopped pecans/walnuts, brown sugar and Creole seasoning.

creole seasoning pecans walnutsLine a cookie sheet with heavy duty aluminum foil.  Place defrosted tilapia fillets on foil lined sheet.  Melt one (1) stick of butter.  Pour melted butter over fillets to lightly coat.


Working with one fillet at the time, dredge each fillet in dry mixture, coating each side.  Place the fillets on the cookie sheet.  Top each fillet with a lemon slice.  Top each lemon slice with a pat of butter (1½ teaspoons).

coated tilapia baking sheet

Place cookie sheet in preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes.  Turn oven up to 400 degrees F.

fresh parsley1

Remove the cookie sheet from the oven and top each fillet with a generous pinch of fresh parsley.

baked tilapia1

Return the cookie sheet to the now 400 degree F oven.  Continue baking fillets for an additional 5 minutes.  Serve immediately.

pecan walnut crusted baked tilapia2

Recipe for Creole Seasoning

1/3  cup paprika

3 tablespoons dried oregano

3 tablespoons ground black pepper

2 tablespoons dried basil

2 tablespoons kosher salt

1 tablespoons cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon granulated onion

4 teaspoons dried thyme

4 teaspoons granulated garlic

In a medium bowl combine paprika, dried oregano, ground black pepper, dried basil, kosher salt, cayenne pepper, granulated onion, dried thyme and granulated garlic.  Stir to combine.  Can be stored in an airtight container for up to three months.







Good Movies With Great Music

Good movies with great music offer the much appreciated alternative to the he said she said conventions and media circus the last two weeks. Roku, Netflix and Amazon Instant Video gaveled in a call to order of what do you want to watch-I don’t know, what do you want to watch.  A majority ruled over the suggestion to match good movies with great music.  A good movie can easily become a great movie when the soundtrack or songs from (not all songs in a movie make it onto the soundtrack) make a lasting impression.  Here’s what’s on the screen and stream:

Silver Linings Playbook

Comedy/Drama starring Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence.

Good movies with great music

Don’t You Worry ‘Bout A Thing- Stevie Wonder


Frankie & Johnny

Drama/Romance starring Al Pacino and Michelle Pfeiffer.

Frankie and Johnny

Clair de Lune- Claude Debussy



Crime/Action starring James Caan.


Soundtrack – Tangerine Dream

Dave the Builder and I watched this movie over and over when we were dating.  James Belushi, Dennis Farina, William Petersen, and Robert Prosky all claim Thief as the first film of their acting careers.  The soundtrack by Tangerine Dream and Composer Craig Safan is mesmerizing.


The Graduate

Drama starring Anne Bancroft and Dustin Hoffman.

The Graduate

Sunporch Cha-Cha-Cha- Simon and Garfunkel


Jackie Brown

Thriller/Drama starring Pam Grier and Samuel L. Jackson.

Jackie Brown

Strawberry Letter 23- The Brothers Johnson


 High Fidelity 

Drama/romance starring John Cusack.

High Fidelity

I Believe (When I Fall in Love It Will Be Forever)- Stevie Wonder


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A Good Book: My Under the Weather Reading List

Read any good books lately?  As a matter of fact, I have read several over my week of recovery.


Reading is proving to be a fundamental part of my under the weather routine and with good reason.  A good book has the power to transform thought, enlighten the soul, teach the mind, lift the heart and take the reader on an all expenses paid trip to places and spaces through inspiration and imagination no plane, train or automobile can get us to.

Susan+Greenleaf+San+Francisco+Home+upholstered+BD2ig9bAH9TlDomaine via Lonny

First up on my under the weather reading list is Paris Flea Market Style by Claudia Strasser. The ooh la la factor and how to get it, emulate it, and incorporate it into our design and decor needs no introduction.


Love of family, faith, Louisiana and balancing a politically mixed marriage-I like the yin and yang world of Mary Matalin and James Carville that noticeably makes this political power couple tick.  Their this works for us attitude is the prominent feature in Love & War: Twenty Years, Three Presidents, Two Daughters and One Louisiana Home.


A smart, funny read with witty observations that rate hilarious on the laugh-o-meter, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)
by Mindy Kaling is a gem of a good read. This book accomplishes exactly what it sets out to do by taking the reader on a most entertaining ride with hilarity riding shotgun.


Veranda A Passion for Living: Houses of Style and Inspiration is a gorgeous review of gorgeous style from cover to cover! Beautiful addition to any bookshelf or coffee table.

Dave the Builder is embracing his role as runner, and I reassured him there is a beginning, middle and end to this new duty.  I like going to the neighborhood parish library to check out the new offerings and to check out books.  There are books that pique your interest but give pause to actually purchasing it for your home library.


Toni Braxton’s autobiography, Unbreak My Heart, has been on my check it out list for awhile now.  She’s a personality that flies under my radar most of the time, but I do love her voice and think her story will make for a good read.


What book is on your must read list?

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For Your Dining Pleasure: Dinner Party Ideas And A Course in Bob Ryan 101

With May, June, and July graduations, weddings, and festivities comes the celebratory ritual of culinary and social interaction and entertaining, the dinner party.  Bob Ryan is a larger than life fictional character from the HBO series Entourage.  Portrayed by Martin Landau,  Bob Ryan is a lovely idea of a man.

Martin LandauMartin Landau as Bob Ryan

He is well spoken in the language of ramble, but what he has to say is about the art of dining is worth a listen.  Bob will have no part of stressful topics being discussed before, during, or after dining.   Ambiance is key in the art and aid of proper digestion, a priority high on his list of dinner party ideas.

top hat owl

Bob Ryan reasons that proper digestion is an important part of the dining experience.  Fictional or real, the wise old owl has got a point.   What if I was to tell you a rich cup of  Louisiana coffee or tea, fine wine, accent lighting and great music is Bob Ryan 101 at Casa Places In The Home.  In the immortal words of Bob Ryan, “Is that something you might be interested in?”

dinner party ideas

From menu to music to the personalities of the diners, you’ve got to put some thought into it.  Much like the perfect wine pairing, getting it right enhances the flavor of the event.  I don’t believe it is terminal if the music or the wine selection doesn’t perfectly fit with a course, but it can feel like there’s been a death when we are paired with bad dinner guests.  There is an art to accomplishing that particular pairing- a social sommelier, if you will.  In case of social emergency, make sure the wine is flowing and hope the whole is greater than the sum of the parts.


Melvin Sokolsky ~ Jump, Paris, 1965

If the quickest way to a person’s heart is through their stomach, music is the shortest route to their soul.   A casual meal goes well with the greatest hits of whatever decade you have the fondest memories from.   A romantic meal naturally slows down the pace of life, speeds up the pace of the heart, and goes well with a smooth groove.  Music makes the mood, and no respectable formal dinner party is complete without the music.


Your crowd doesn’t have an Appetite for Destruction?


There’s a lot to be said for the advice offered up from a fictional character in a cable series.  Palatable peace existing in perfect harmony in the name of digestion is at the top of my dinner party ideas list.

And yes, Bob, that is something I am very interested in.

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Valentine’s Day Gift Ideas

We’re T-7 until the holiday of hearts and love. What  special gift do you have in mind for that special someone for Valentine’s Day?  Need Valentine’s Day gift ideas?  I do!


Valentine’s Day gifts range from the traditional flowers and candy to extravagant hot air balloon rides and diamond jubilees and everything between. Coming up with the perfect gift is part of the fun.  Let me share with you some of that fun.


A homemade love letter cookie gets to the heart of the matter~ Love.  I’m not exactly sure, but I think this sweet for your sweet will score big brownie points, or in this case sugar cookie points.  The creative minds at Country Living also provide the sugar cookie and royal icing recipe and buying information for the food-safe marker.



Stay in the loop with this stylish daily planner from Sugar Paper.

peonies-throw-pillowPeonies – perfect in any form!

chocolate-gift-boxDude, Sweet Chocolate

 A custom made retro brown lunchbox from Dude, Sweet Chocolate says, “Dude, Happy Valentine’s Day” in a dude kind of way.

Marc-Jacobs-DaisyMarc Jacobs Daisy Rollerball Trio

The three R’s of Valentine’s Day – rollerballs, Romance and Red.


A special and intimate dinner for two prepared at home is an excellent opportunity to show off one’s own culinary skills or at least one’s good taste in culinary kiss the cook treats. Set the table and set the mood with Valentine’s Day themed serving accessories and decadent sweets.

heart-shaped-platesXO Heart Plates

rose-plateRose Plate

rose-cakeHeart Rose Chocolate Cake

I’ve taken the liberty to put together  The Power of Love  playlist of love songs for your listening enjoyment.  Click on the link to view my Valentine’s Day playlist on Spotify.


Pop the corn, grab the remote and cuddle up together to enjoy an after dinner romantic movie or miniseries of epic romantic proportion.


Dinner and a movie continues to impress as a Valentine’s Day option for couples.


What do these Valentine’s Day gift ideas and Cupid’s arrow have in common? They both aim straight for the heart!  I hope these ideas help to get your ♥ into the planning, the spirit of, and the love of Valentine’s Day. Happy Valentine’s Day shopping!

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Holiday Inspiration and Festive Favorites

The holiday season is in full swing, and there are so many sites and sights to see.  This is the time of year when treasures, goodies, ideas, and pretty images flood the day in the best possible way.  Holiday inspiration is all around.

holiday inspirationPinterest

Olive by Farrow & Ball is festively featured in the gentleman’s study designed by Tammy Connor at  The Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles Christmas House.

the night before Christmas

The 12 Days of Christmas crackers from Williams-Sonoma are a Noël novelty done elegantly and festively right.

George Sheridan KnowlesPinterest

The Duet by George Sheridan Knowles masterfully exhibits the allure of green in shades of trend.

vintage ChristmasPinterest

When I can’t sleep I don’t count sheep, I try to recall the stores and shops that lined the downtown area from when I was a kid.  Do you remember shopping downtown at Christmas time?  Santa Claus in his red house with white trimmed windows, Christmas lights and tinsel stars strung from store front to store front, and department stores display windows decked out in holiday finery.  Lerner Shops, Bakers, JCPenney, W.T. Grant, S. H. Kress & Co., Rexall, Morgan & Lindsey’s…

Charlie Brown Christmas

Christmas time is here!  Have a great weekend!