Holiday Cooking is always exciting and festive and I often wonder why I allocate these culinary wonders to a couple days a year , rather then utilizing them year round. I love ham, but frankly the only time that I cook it is either on Easter or Christmas Eve. Ham will feed a crowd and get you a couple meals to boot! This year I tried a new Ham recipe and it was just divine.  Super Market Hams can be a bit rubbery, but with a little TLC they become something new and fabulous. The Main Event   1 Large Ham Bone in Glaze 1Read More →

This is one of those wonderfully versatile recipes- it works with whatever happens to be in your fridge. It works equally well with firm tofu, ground chicken or ground pork. Feel free to swap in any veggies that you have. Serves 2 -4 people depending on hunger level. The cooking time is rather quick so it’s wonderful for a quick dinner after all your evening chores are done. 1/2 Package Rice Noodles – I prefer the thin noodles 1 Package Ground Turkey 1 Cup Diced Zuchini 1/2 Cup Fresh corn 1 bunch scallions 4 tablespoons chili garlic sauce-  Huy Fong can be found in mostRead More →

This time of year we are generally all rich in squash and corn and although the summer may not immediately make us think of soup- it is a wonderful way to use up that bumper crop. This is a super easy recipe and the soup can be made ahead – with finale being hours later with the squash blossoms. Squash & Corn Soup 2 Medium squash cut into dice 2 ears corn – corn removed from the cob 1 medium onion diced 5 cups chicken stock – if you have homemade lovely otherwise no worries 2 slices crusty bread cut into- if you only haveRead More →

It’s a universally loved food with both children and adults. Pizza dough is versatile stuff – if I’m trying to whip up a quick dinner, I’ll make one large Grandma Style Pizza on a cookie sheet or if the kiddos seem to be looking for something to do we’ll make individual pies. Either way it is a great way to incorporate all types of ingredients. When the kiddos make their own pies I put out as many ingredients as I can find in the fridge or freezer. The kids have a great time making designs on their pies and eagerly eat whatever they create. It’sRead More →

I love setting tables. It’s the frustrated artist in me coming out. I start with a color scheme and go from there. I like to mix the everyday with the special pieces and add layers to make the table fun. Remember – the food is King – but sitting at a well-laid table really adds the perfect touch. Incorporating decorative accents from around the house and whatever looks bright & cheery in fruit and vegetable department creates a beautiful and unique table design. Don’t get me wrong, I love fresh flowers, but I’m usually running around like a crazy person so getting to the storeRead More →

I realized early on that you have to market veggies to kids. Be loud, be proud of what you are serving—shout it from the rooftops: “Hey, there, dinner is ready and guess what we are having? Broccoli YEAH!!!!” You would be amazed at how just a little enthusiasm will all of sudden make that dread thing on their plate into something wonderful. Be a promoter of the mighty vegetable—market the heck out of those veggies to your kiddos : “Small people, did you know that Carrots will help you see in the dark?” or  “Green Makes you grow—who wants to be the tallest?” From an earlyRead More →

Painting is a great way to scratch that design itch. Within hours of that eureka moment you can have a completely different look somewhere in your home. A few easy steps will get you a fresh new feel. Painter’s Tape is the key to a clean professional look—a complete pain in the ass, but worth all of the work. Over spring break I could not bear the abysmal condition of our front porch. It had been painted a drab prison grey by the former owner and large swaths of paint were missing and the front door was a gritty white. I’m into instant gratification andRead More →

I find baking incredibly satisfying. There’s something zen about starting with basic ingredients and ending up with a cake.  I try to bake as many cakes as possible for family birthdays & the occasional holiday. For Easter I made a Coconut Cake with Lemon Icing which  was decorated with Easter Candy . There’s something wonderfully sweet about baking cake for a birthday or holiday meal. Please don’t take that to mean that I make all of the cakes—sometimes I’m slammed and I’m happy to enlist the help of the local baker or supermarket (a great source for flashy & fun kids’ cakes). Anyway, I have oneRead More →

I hold onto everything. When Gourmet closed it was heartbreaking, so I kept every copy I could lay my hands on. Flipping through a pile of Gourmet magazines in the basement ( I spend a bit too much time down there)  I was struck with how beautiful the covers were. Framed those babies, and they now grace my pantry in the country. They make me happy whenever I see them. “Waste not want not” was my Grandmother’s mantra. It really stuck with me. You know those collections of remnant fabrics and wallpaper you have lying around like the ghosts of projects past? I have becomeRead More →

I find nothing more satisfying and simple to pull off then the one pot dinner. They are great year-round and if you can work the vegetable into the scenario – even better!  The other advantage is it makes your home smell awesome all day. This is one of my favorites and it can be served in a myriad of ways. Most recently I served it with rice and avocados tossed with lime and tortillas, but it works just as well with mashed potatoes. The only real labor is the marinade. Garlic Marinated Pork Shoulder with Beans Marinade 4 oranges or tangerines 1/2 cup cider vinegarRead More →