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May 30, 2017

I love slow cooker recipes; especially for those busy days where the thought of preparing dinner sounds exhausting.  This one is extra nice, because the prep work is fast and easy.  You can easily throw this together before you go to work or start your day.  I adapted this recipe from the May 2011 edition of Woman's Day Magazine.  I love the versatility of this recipe as well (see tips).  If you make these yummy hoagies, please let me know what you think!

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

Sometimes, I do not drain the tomatoes, and I add up to a pound more of the sausages.  If you decide to try this, just make sure you serve it with a slotted spoon.

For those who do not eat pork, I have made this with an Italian poultry sausage.  The results were excellent!

You can also serve this open-faced sandwich style.  Toast thick slices of bread, and place the meat-veggie mixture on the toast.  Top with cheese.

You can use any cheese you desire: asiago, goat cheese, feta, mozzarella...

I use mild Itali...

May 25, 2017

With summer upon us, I thought it would be a good idea to post this healthy snack.  These rich dark chocolate goodies taste sweet and indulgent while still being healthy.  I got this recipe from the January/February edition of Cooking Light magazine, and I believe they did an awesome job with these delicious brownies.  Give them a try and see for yourself!  Eating healthy can be a delicious thing.

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

When rubbing the skins off the hazelnuts, I place several hazelnuts between the palms of my hands and rub back and forth.  The skins come right off!

Preparation time is 40 minutes.  Chill time is 30 minutes.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup whole hazelnuts

  • 12 whole Medjool dates, pitted and roughly chopped

  • 2/3 cup almond butter

  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa

  • 2 tablespoons water

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Spread nuts on a small rimmed baking sheet.  Bake at 350 degrees F until lightly...

May 23, 2017

Are you looking for an easy weeknight meal?  Try this wonderful chicken dinner!  It is simple to put together, and my family approved of it heartily.  It would be a fine dish for company too.  I adapted it from the January 2014 edition of Southern Living magazine.  It is a lovely dish that brings to mind a rustic French countryside.  The lemon adds a brightness to the chicken, while the rosemary and garlic mellows the flavors into something quite extraordinary.  It really is delicious!  Serve with a crusty French bread to round out this meal and be prepared for compliments!

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

I like to smash my garlic cloves with the skin on.  Take your chef's knife, and give the clove a good smack.  The skin should peel right off the clove.

I was never a fan of capers, until I started to rinse them.  Now, I love them.  If you like them as is, then no rinsing necessary!

Preparation time is 30 minutes.  The cook time is 50 minutes.  The total time is 1...

May 18, 2017

This is a recipe I have been working on for awhile now.  I combined different elements of blueberry muffin recipes and created something new!  If you like muffins that are loaded with blueberries, you are going to love this recipe.

The muffins are sweet and cake-like.  They burst with blueberry flavor.  In order to get this amazing blueberry flavor, there is a cup and a half of whole blueberries in this recipe, and also an additional half cup of smashed blueberries.  The smashed blueberries add even more blueberry flavor to these delightful muffins!

The topping is something that I perfected towards my own taste.  I prefer the 'just enough' buttery sugar-cinnamon topping on my muffins.  Though, if you prefer more of a crunch to your muffins, you can simply double the topping ingredients  Let me know if you bake these Blue for You Blueberry Muffins!  I would love to know what you think of my recipe.

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

This recipe works best with blueberries that taste...

May 16, 2017

I adapted this wonderful pasta primavera from one of Giada De Laurentiis' recipes.  The pasta is loaded with vegetables and topped with parmesan reggiano cheese.  To make this pasta shine, use the best ingredients.  I often try to get clean, natural, and/or organic ingredients if at all possible.  You may pay more, but I find that there is definitely a difference in taste.  In the tips section, I mention a few of my favorite staple ingredient brand names that I use in this dish.

One of the reasons why I love this pasta primavera, is it is not loaded down with cream and fat.  It is light and delicious - a perfect embodiment of spring!  Primavera is the Italian word for 'spring'.  You can serve this dish for a main course or a side course, and if you miss the meat, you can simply add grilled chicken (or shrimp).  Serve this with a crusty artesian bread, and you have a lovely meal!

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

Make sure to read through the instructions before preparing thi...

May 11, 2017

This recipe comes from my mother-in-law, Linda.  I like this cake because the texture is a bit heavier than most traditional angel food cakes.  It holds up well under a pile of beautiful seasonal berries and a dollop of whipped cream.  If you want to present a special cake for a special occasion, why not give this lovely dessert a try?

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

You will need an angel food cake pan for this recipe.  You will also need a very large glass or stainless steel bowl when beating the egg whites.

When breaking the eggs, separate the yolks from the whites.  I do this over a drinking glass in case the yolk breaks.  If the yolk breaks, discard.  If any egg yolk gets in your egg whites, your eggs will not reach a stiff peak result.  Make sure your egg whites are room temperature!!!

Preparation time is 25 minutes.  Bake time is 35 minutes.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cup sifted flour

  • 1/2 cup sifted sugar

  • 2 cups egg whites (approximately 14 large eggs), room temperatu...

May 9, 2017

Here is a lovely quiche that I created when I needed to use some leftover roasted salmon.  The combination of leek, asparagus, and salmon is perfect for spring!  This dish makes for a lovely luncheon or a special occasion like Mother's Day.  I like to serve it with a fresh green salad with a French vinaigrette.  This quiche is simple but elegant.

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

My favorite way to make this quiche is with fresh salmon that has been oven roasted.  During spring when salmon is in season, I always buy extra to use in recipes like this one!

To test the quiche to see if it is done, simply insert a butter knife about 1/2 inch deep into the center of the quiche.  If it comes out clean, it is finished.

My water whipped pastry shell works great for this recipe.  And as a bonus, you will have an extra shell for pie!

Preparation time is 30 minutes.  Cook time is 45 minutes.

Ingredients:

  • 1 leek, thinly sliced (up to the green part)

  • 1 cup fresh asparagus, cut in 1/2 inch pieces

  • 1...

May 4, 2017

It's strawberry season, and I can't think of a better way to enjoy these scrumptious berries than in a pie.  This pie is an absolute favorite among my family, and I guarantee that if you love strawberries, you will have a difficult time only eating one slice.  This dessert is unforgettable - with whole strawberries placed on top of a sweet cream filling and a homemade strawberry glaze poured over the pie.  Give this pie of the month a try!  It really is amazing.

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

If you have any leftover glaze, you can refrigerate and use in plain yogurt or use like a strawberry jam.

Please refer to pictures when whipping cream.  You want soft peak for the initial whipping.  When you whip the cream and cream cheese together, you want a stiff peak.

Organic strawberries will give you the best strawberry flavor.  I highly recommend buying organic strawberries for this pie, even though you will pay more.

Preparation Time is 45 minutes.  Chill time is 3 hours.  Total time is...

May 2, 2017

I got this recipe from a magazine, and it has been in my food file for a long while now.  You might ask, 'What magazine?'  I have no idea!  But I am glad that I ran across it a few weeks ago.  If you love fish tacos, you are going to love this recipe.  It is so simple and so yummy!  These two tacos take about 30 minutes to prepare, so you can have them on the table fast.  They are perfect for Cinco de Mayo or for any weeknight meal.  These tacos are delicious, fast and healthy - that is my kind of dinner!  Give these fish tacos a try and let me know what you think.

Bon Appetit!

Tips:

I like to use the fajita size tortillas, but you can use any size you prefer.

For those who do not like cilantro, replace it with parsley.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound fresh or frozen skinless tilapia fillets (or other white fish)

  • 1/2 cup dairy sour cream

  • 1 teaspoon chipotle chile pepper in adobo sauce, finely chopped

  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 cup finely choppe...

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