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Sunday, October 19, 2014

It's Fall Again!

So my dear friends it is once again my favorite time of year! I live for the time when I can use & eat apples & cranberries :)  I started my baking season with one of my all time favorite recipes...Cranberry Buttermilk Cake. Its a recipe I found a while ago & it is quite simply perfect. Tart but not overly sweet & incredibly moist. You can also swap out blueberries for the cranberries(the adjustments are in the original recipe). It is also foolproof which makes it even better. I am sharing the recipe here with a link to the original recipe from
I truly hope you enjoy it as much as I do :)


½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
the zest from 1 orange zest
1 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
1 egg, room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. kosher salt
2 cups fresh cranberries
½ cup buttermilk

1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Cream butter with orange zest and 1 cup of the sugar until light and fluffy.

2. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined. Meanwhile, toss the cranberries with 2 tablespoons of flour, then whisk together the remaining flour, baking powder and salt.

3. Add the flour mixture to the batter a little at a time, alternating with the buttermilk. Fold in the cranberries.

4. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan (or something similar) with butter or coat with non-stick spray. Spread batter into pan. Sprinkle batter with remaining tablespoon of sugar. Bake for 35 minutes, then check for doneness by touching the top gently or by inserting a toothpick. If necessary, return pan to oven, check every five minutes or so — it took my cake a little bit over 45 minutes to cook. (Note: Baking for as long as 50 minutes might be necessary, especially if you made the batter in advance.) Let cool at least 15 minutes before serving

Monday, July 7, 2014


Hello All! So as I've said in a previous post, I am a serious carb junkie! My favorite of these wonderful starches is definitely pasta without a doubt! Maybe it's the Italian in me  :) One of my favorite pasta dishes is the classic Fettuccine Alfredo. Now I must say I think I'm a good cook but I admit my father (who is Irish/German) makes a killer Alfredo sauce! So here today I am sharing his recipe for this awesome, easy classic. I happen to like grilled chicken with my Alfredo so feel free to serve it with or without it :) BUON APPETITO!

Bobby's Alfredo: For 1lb Fettuccine
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup heavy cream
1 stick butter (I like to cut it down a bit to 1/2)
5-8 oz. Parmiggiano Reggiano cheese (use the best you can get)

*Boil water for pasta*
1) In large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add garlic & sautee until very lightly brown but not burned.
2) Add cream & raise heat to med-high. Bring to bubble. Reduce to simmer & add cheese.
3) Simmer until slightly thickened.
4) When pasta is done, toss in sauce & serve.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Quick and Easy 3

So my life lately has been a whirlwind with so much going on that coming up with something fast for dinner has been paramount. I dug into my recipe book the other night and was instantly hit with an old classic...QUICHE! How on Earth could I have forgotten about it? Quiche is fast,easy & satisfying-perfect!
I usually have all the ingredients on hand and its so versatile so I can change it up any way I want. Here is my tried and true recipe for my favorite Quiche...hope you enjoy it!

Classic Quiche:
4 strips bacon*
1 small onion,diced
9 in. Frozen pie crust
1/2 cup cheese,cubed(whatever you like-the classic is Gruyere but I like cheddar)
2Tbsp. Grated parmesan cheese
3 eggs,lightly beaten
1/2 c. heavy cream or half & half
1/2c. Milk
2 Tbsp. minced parsley
Salt & pepper to taste

1) Place oven rack in lowest position & preheat oven to 375
2) Heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon & cook 3-4 minutes until crisp, turning frequently. Remove & drain on paper towel. Pour off all but 1 Tbsp of fat from the pan. In the same pan, cook the onions over medium heat until they wilt, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes.
3) Crumble bacon and sprinkle over the pie crust along with onions & cheese.
4) In a bowl, whisk together eggs,cream,milk & seasonings. Pour into crust. Place on a baking sheet & bake 45-50 minutes or until firm but not dry.
Serve warm or room temperature

* If you want a vegetable quiche just replace the bacon with 1/2 cup of your favorite cooked veggies.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Smoothie Craze

We are all trying to stay healthy especially with Summer coming. I have recently lost 60lbs & feel awesome. Like many of you, I have gotten into the whole smoothie/juice craze that has swept the nation. I have always had a passion for my fave Jamba juice which is amazing & very healthy(try it soon if you never have!). The only problem is I don't have a Jamba close by! They did finally came out with frozen smoothie kits you can find in your grocery store. They are a little pricey at $3.69 a bag which gives you 2 drinks & really isn't that bad considering a small juice at the shop costs about $5. Today I am going to share with you my tips for making your own frozen smoothie kits at home. It's really not that hard. All you need is some non-fat yogurt,fruit & veggies, a sheet pan, icecube trays & a few ziploc bags. Whatever you do just use fresh produce! Ok, here we go!

AT HOME SMOOTHIE KITS: Each kit makes 1 8oz drink
1) 2 cups of your favorite fruits & veggies(my faves are strawberries,peaches & spinach*), rinsed & dried well with paper towel. If possible use a salad spinner for leafy veggies.
2) enough yogurt to fill an ice cube tray
3)fresh lemon juice

1) Prepare fruit. Berries can be left whole, stone fruits & banana can be cut in chunks.
2) Mix lemon juice with 6 Tbsp. water in a bowl. Give stone fruit & bananas a quick dip in the water & let dry.
3) Place fruit on a sheet pan & place in freezer until fruit is completely frozen-at least 12hrs. If using spinach or other leafy greens, puree them in a blender with a few tablespoons of water & freeze in ice cube trays.
4) Fill an ice cube tray with yogurt & place plastic wrap on top & place in freezer until frozen.
5) When fruit & yogurt cubes are frozen, place 4oz(mixture of fruit & yogurt cubes) in small ziploc baggies. Label bags!
To make a smoothie,combine 1 4oz bag of your mixture with 8oz juice(I like orange juice) & blend in a blender. You can also use a combination of juice & coconut water if you'd like.

I hope you will all join the juice craze and lets get healthy!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Quick and Easy 2

Hello All!
Sorry for my absence lately...getting ready for a craft show I'm doing for my jewelry business. Since my life has been so hectic lately, I have needed to reach into my quick & easy recipes quite a few times! Everyone is looking for different ways to cook our favorite things most commonly chicken and the good old pork chop. I remembered this sweet & sour pork chop dish that my father used to make years ago that I haven't had in a long time so I decided to make it tonight-all I have to say is I'm so glad my father & I both remembered what went in it! Hope you all enjoy it as much as I do!
*P.S.-This can be made on the stovetop or in the oven!*

Sweet & Sour Pork Chops
Makes 4-6 boneless chops 1 in. thick
1 1/4c. Ketchup
3 Tbsp. Soy sauce
1 Tbsp. Cider or red wine vinegar(I sometimes like to add just about a teaspoon more)
1 Tbsp packed brown sugar
1 20oz. can pineapple chunks,juice reserved
1 red pepper cut into chunks

1) If making in oven heat to 350 or heat your large skillet to medium high
2) For sauce: In saucepan,add all ingredients except the pepper & pineapple chunks & heat just until hot.  Add pepper & pineapple.
3)Brown pork chops in 2 Tbsp vegetable oil & drain.
4) If making on stovetop, return chops to skillet & add sauce. Cook with vented lid until chops are done. If making in oven place chops in baking dish & pour sauce over. 5)Cover with foil & bake until chops are done about 20-22 minutes depending on the size of chops.
Serve over white rice

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

YAY! Another post about chocolate...

Well My Friends, it's been a while since I wrote a post about my favorite ingredient-chocolate. I sadly gave up baking for Lent(call me crazy-everyone has!) but I have been craving sweet creation! I decided there was only one way to get around my Lenten sacrifice & still have the satisfaction of eating a yummy chocolate dessert without baking-Chocolate Cream Pie! I LOVE LOVE LOVE this recipe! Its so simple & so sinful :) I hope you will all enjoy it!

Chocolate Cream Pie
Serves 8

½ cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch, sifted
4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
2 cups milk
2 oz. chopped bittersweet chocolate
½ teaspoon vanilla
1 pre made Oreo cookie crust
sweetened whipped cream
chocolate shavings

1)In a small pot, stir sugar, cornstarch and cocoa powder together.
2)Whisk in milk and place over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil and starts to thicken.
3)Once hot and thick remove from heat and stir in chopped chocolate and vanilla.
4)Pour into pie plate and cover with plastic wrap. **Be sure to place the plastic wrap directly on the filling**.
**Refrigerate for 2 hours or until completely chilled and plastic wrap comes off clean**.
5) Spread homemade whipped cream over pie & cover with chocoloate shavings

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Dinner for One

Sorry for the long absence everyone! Just been so crazy busy. Well I think that even with the busiest schedules there are those rare times where we find ourselves alone for dinner. One of my all time trusty faves for those times is a good old sandwich-but not just any sandwich,a panini. Crispy bread,yummy prosciutto & mozzarella with homemade roasted peppers-how can you go wrong? Its satisfying,easy & the best thing-hardly any cleanup! So fix this yummy sammie & relax-you've earned it :)

Prosciutto,Mozzarella & Roasted Pepper Panini
2 pieces of Ciabatta bread,thinly sliced
3 slices prosciutto
2 slices mozzarella
2 oz. roasted red peppers

Preheat a grill pan or panini press
Build your sandwich making sure everything is in even layers.
Drizzle with olive oil
If using a grill pan,weight down the panini with a heavy pan.
Brown 2-3 minutes per side until cheese is melted.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Chilly Days,Warm Nights

Well Readers, if you're like me, you're getting sick & tired of all the cold & snow! On days when the weather is cold we need something nice & hot to keep us warm & satisfied. One thing comes to mind-a steaming hot bowl of soup. My favorite soup ever is Potato Leek. Many years ago, I was lucky enough to work with a wonderful chef who gave me the best recipe for this beautiful soup. I have tweaked it just a bit with the addition of one of my favorite ingredients-pancetta! Let's face it-everything's better with bacon but that's another post all together :) This potato leek soup is great served hot but can also be served room temp or even chilled. Also, if you add shredded rotisserie chicken to it its amazing! I hope you all will try & enjoy this recipe as much as I do.



4oz butter
1 Spanish onion,diced
1 bunch leeks,white & light green parts split,cleaned & sliced thin
2 quarts chicken stock
1 pint heavy cream
2 lbs. Russet potatoes,diced small
4 oz. pancetta, diced

1)In a large pot, sautee pancetta until browned but still soft. Remove & drain on paper towel.
2)melt butter; add leeks & onions. Sautee until wilted.
3)Add chicken stock & bring to boil. Cook 15 minutes.
4) Add potatoes-cook until very tender
5) Season well with salt & pepper.
6) Stir in heavy cream & return pancetta to pot. Serve with chopped chive or fried shallots(optional garnishes)

Hope you all enjoy this recipe...don't forget to Live, Love & Eat!! :)