Category — Recipes
Happy 22nd Birthday to my fabulous son, Connor!
Please know that even though I’m not with you today, you are in my heart and on my mind. I love you from here to the moon and back! xoxo
Here is the classic and easy to make chocolate sheet cake I made for my boy. With lots of pictures showing each step. I was camera happy this day!
May 24, 2013 4 Comments
Whenever I’m leaving town for more than a couple days, the first thing I think of, is how to use up all the fresh food in the refrigerator. The night before we leave, I usually make a big “garbage” pasta dish. “Garbage” as in, throwing any and every thing into it.
I’ll show you what that pasta dish looked like in a future post. Today, I’m showing you what I did with an unopened bag of arugula that would have been too much for the pasta.
I used it to make pesto and then I froze the pesto for later use.
Pesto is a sauce originating in Genoa, which is in the Liguria region of northern Italy (pesto genovese),and traditionally consists of crushed basil, garlic, and pine nuts that are blended with olive oil, Parmigiano Reggiano and Fiore Sardo (cheese made from sheep’s milk). The name is from the word pestâ (Italian: pestare), which means to pound, to crush, in reference to the original method of preparation, with marble mortar and a wooden pestle. The ingredients in a traditionally made pesto are ground with a circular motion of the pestle in the mortar. Nowadays it’s most commonly made in a food processor, at least in the States, it is.
Although basil, Parmesan, and pine nuts are the traditional pesto ingredients, feel free to use any variety and combination of greens or herbs, nuts, and cheese. Here are just a few combinations to get your creative juices flowing. Mix and match to make your own signature pesto.
- Cilantro and Pepitas
- Parsley, Anchovy and Capers
- Sage, Parsley, and Hazelnuts
- Spinach in place or in addition to the Basil
- Mixed Herb; Basil, Mint, Cilantro, Parsley, with Spinach and Asiago
- Dill, Lemon, Walnut and Romano
- Fennel Fond
I’ve given this tip before, but it merits repeating. When you have a thick or sticky mixture in a food processor. Remove what you easily can with a rubber spatula, then put the bowl back on the machine and process for just a second or two. The stuff on the blade will be thrown off to the sides of the bowl by centrifugal force and you’ll be able to get all the mixture easily from the bowl.
May 23, 2013 1 Comment
This is the final recipe from my Red, White & Blue holiday cooking class at Les Gourmettes. The summer provides three excellent chances to get together to celebrate our country; Memorial Day, Independence Day, and Labor Day. Invite friends over and enjoy!
Image via Country Living
The ingredient list for this chicken dish is lengthy, but please don’t let that scare you off. The marinade keeps the chicken juicy and is put together the night before.
The grill only needs to be manned for a few minutes, since the chicken is only “marked” on it… it is cooked through in the oven. This is a serious plus in Phoenix! The hottest 4th of July on record happened in 1989 when it reached 118°F. Manning a grill in that heat – no thank you! But if you live in a more moderate climate and you’d prefer to use the grill to cook the chicken through, that works too.
The BBQ sauce is sweet and tangy and is equally delicious used with shrimp, beef, or pork. It is an absolute delight.
I doubled the recipe for class, so you’ll notice I had to use two zip-lock bags to marinate in – the single recipe needs only one.
Image via Country Living
Patriot Picnic Menu
May 19, 2013 1 Comment
This potato salad was the second side to my patriot menu. The entrée and full menu will follow, tomorrow.
Creamy Dijon & Dill Potato Salad
3 pounds Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and left whole
1 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon whole-grain Dijon mustard
1 small red onion, peeled and diced
3 celery stalks, diced
1/3 cup tightly packed chopped fresh dill
Freshly ground black pepper
May 18, 2013 3 Comments
Another recipe from the Red, White, & Blue Menu that I taught the last night of classes at Les Gourmettes Cooking School. Again, no step by step photos … now worries, they are not needed.
May 17, 2013 4 Comments
This is the dessert I made for the last class of my 3-week cooking series at Les Gourmettes Cooking School. The semester ended last night – it is officially summer for me. No more classes until September.
Since I made this during class, I don’t have any step-by-step photos for you, but the recipe is straight forward.
This is the perfect dessert for Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Labor Day, or honestly for any day of the week this summer. Enjoy!
May 16, 2013 5 Comments
I have a recipe update for the Easy Mac & Cheese topped with Beef Short Rib Ragù which I posted in September of last year.
I happen to know that this is my friend and neighbor, Cindi Hancock’s, favorite recipe from this site. She and I often commiserate about, and then update each other on, the availability status of the prepared short ribs at Costco.
This is the product that Costco sold last September. Then, suddenly, it wasn’t available… right when Cindi was planning to make the dish for a dinner party. We were bummed.
I’d search for the ribs on my weekly Costco runs.
After few months of disappointment, I found that prepared short ribs were once again available at Costco. I sent Cindi a text while I was there, telling her of the good news. I purchased a package and tossed it into my freezer.
May 11, 2013 No Comments
My Mother’s Day menu was featured in yesterday’s Food & Drink section of the Arizona Republic.
Here are photos and links to the recipes.
May 9, 2013 1 Comment
I made this pretty and festive punch to take to a Cinco de Mayo party last Sunday. Needless to say, it was a hit! So much so, that it ran out before the party was over. At that point, we were just pulling the pineapple rings out of the jar and eating them. I brought home the rest and poured light rum into the jar. I’ll now have the bonus of pineapple infused rum… in a couple weeks. Two for one – Gotta love that!
The recipe makes a huge batch – but it can easily be cut in half. I also doubled the simple syrup and plan to use it for mojitos over Mother’s Day weekend.
My excuse? Seriously, something has to be done with all the mint in my garden … before it chokes out everything else!
Plus, I saved the mint leaves used in the simple syrup. I’m trying my hand at sugaring the leaves … and making mint flavored sugar at the same time. I’ll keep you posted on how that works out.
So much going on from just one punch recipe!
May 8, 2013 3 Comments
One of the things you’ll usually find in my refrigerator is caramelized onions, sometimes called onion jam.
The process of cooking the onions is slow, but crucial to achieve that soft, tender, sweet caramelized taste. On the plus side, they can be made days in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator or even frozen.
Considered the crown jewel of dates, Medjool are prized for their large size, extraordinary sweetness and chewy texture. They were once reserved for Moroccan royalty and their guests.
Put the sweet onions together with the sweet dates, wrap them in bacon, and you have perfection! Serve these to your family and guests and thank me later.
May 7, 2013 2 Comments