Who doesn’t love the layered yumminess that is au gratin potatoes? There’s one drawback, however, to this dish, and that’s the amount of time it takes to prepare and cook. An easy shortcut for weekday dinners are these cute and delicious au gratin potato stacks that are made in a muffin tin! Use a regular...
This is my version of one of the Olive Garden’s popular soups. I was going by memory, but I think it is very similar – minus all the sodium that you can just taste in every drop from the restaurant version. It’s filling, nutritious and with a few of my tricks you can keep the...
Staying pleasantly crispy is never hard at Bacon, a hippy-chic eatery on the north-east corner of Lamar and 10th Street in Austin. Upon first glance, one might notice the huge pink pig resting on top of the restaurant, proudly claiming domain and uttering the words “Abandon hope all ye who enter here, for within lies...
I absolutely LOVE stuffing pork roasts in this way – not only do they look and taste stunning, but once you’ve mastered the technique of butchering the meat, they are crazy easy and versatile. For this roast, I used a combination of an already prepared artichoke pesto I bought from the store, fresh kale and...
Montreal ribs, dry garlic ribs, Chinese ribs… they go by so many different names but they’re results are always DELICIOUS and remarkably easy to make. When living in Canada, I used to be able to buy the sauce already made; you simply pour the contents over ribs and simmer until cooked. Moving to Texas, however,...
A friend posted a recipe for Blueberry Crumble Cheesecake Bars that she happened to stumble upon, and while it took me several weeks to get around to trying it, try it I finally did. The recipe was adapted from the I Wash, You Dry blog , and while I MOSTLY followed the recipe, well …...
I haven’t cooked this recipe in a while, but when I had my business it was always a popular and highly recommended dish. Full of simple flavors, it is at once hearty and soul-satisfying. This dish can be made low fat by using fat-free or low-fat ricotto, but I would not use fat-free mozzarella –...
Easier to make than you might believe, this hearty stew is just packed full of delicious flavor. Unlike a traditional stew filled with chunks of potatoes, carrots and other veggies, a Hungarian goulash is all about the meat. Give yourself plenty of time to make this dish, however, as the longer and slower it cooks,...
I challenge all brussels sprouts haters to try this simple and delightful recipe. Even my husband, who would run screaming from the house (OK, not really) when I made brussels actually had seconds of these. The KEY is not to overcook them. They should still be tender crisp, otherwise they get that funky flavor that...
This was a new creation – I’m forever browsing recipes and take ideas of this and that and merge them together and sometimes, like with these peppers, it results in amazing yumminess! I used the recipe for my Spanish Rice to help flavor the filling and the result was tender, delicious and my kids gobbled...
When I’m running short of time and need to get something on the table fast, I often turn to my 15-minute tomato sauce. This amazingly flavorful sauce can be made with cherry tomatoes, roma tomatoes, or whatever you have on hand, and it has the benefit of being LOW in sodium compared to grocery store...
Ahh, the humble apple cake, for which there must be thousands of recipes. My family and I just happen to love this buttery concoction of fresh apples, cinnamon, and, did I mention butter? Nothing is more perfect on a rainy fall afternoon with a cup of tea – cut a slice for yourself today!
To julienne vegetables, one must make very thin, equally sized knife in order to get thin strands of vegetables. This can be a very time consuming task and it can also result in a lot of waste. To make the process easier, you can buy a ‘julienner’, for lack of a better term. This handy...
This is the perfect dish for fall – it’s a bit labor intensive but you can easily do it in parts, AND the results are so very worth the effort. I used a combination of chicken and pork sausage, just to keep the calories on the lower end, but any combination of sausage would work....
Shepherd's Pie, or Cottage Pie, is heart-warming food at its best!
I write about restaurants for a living, so I must say it feels a little odd to be writing a review for myself, rather than for a client. Nonetheless, hubby and I had the opportunity to try the Paggi House for dinner the other weekend. We had been for brunch before, which is one of [...]
Once considered primarily a spring vegetable, today asparagus can be found just about all year long. When it goes on sale at my local store I pounce; buying several pounds at once and gobbling them down, meal after meal. My favorite asparagus preparation also happens to be very healthy – healthy and favorite don’t often [...]
I’m not sure who actually created the first toasted ravioli, but I’d sure like to thank them. This tasty treat might hail from St. Louis, and in particular, The Hill area, but now savvy diners can find these tasty morsels on Italian restaurant menus all around the country.
Toasted is a bit of a misnomer; toasted [...]
Well, in pursuit of the perfect spaetzle, I’ve tried yet another variation and I think I’m in love.
So, there I was, standing in front of an open fridge looking for spaetzle inspiration when I saw the bacon. A little lightbulb went off in my head. Eureka! Bacon spaetzle, and let me tell you it tastes [...]
You may be familiar with the name “Toad in a Hole.” This quintessential English breakfast dish is basically a hunk of sausage buried in a rich egg custard and then baked. Did I mention the use of lots of butter or oil? Well, this healthified version uses crumbled turkey sausage instead of pork, light cheese [...]
Ever wonder what to do with zucchini that is a little bit different from your usual preparations? Well, here is a recipe for zucchini carpaccio that is refreshing, delicious and makes great use of zucchini.
4 small zucchini or about 1lb
4 tbsp good quality olive oil
2 tbsp lemon juice (fresh squeezed)
1 tsp capers, chopped [...]
Photo by Franz Conde
Carpaccio is simply raw meat prepared in a particular way. For many, the idea of ingesting raw meat is unpalatable, especially in a state where barbecue reigns supreme. Carpaccio however, has evolved to mean more the style of preparation rather than the original raw beef dish.
Carpaccio was first served in 1950 [...]
So it was a lazy Sunday afternoon when I realized that the leftover turkey I had planned for dinner had been nibbled at (substantially) and I was without a plan for dinner. Then the dreaded question struck: what’s for dinner? A moment of panic ensued and then I calmed and rationally debated with myself on [...]
Not to toot my own horn but I think that dinner invitations to my feasts ought to be the hottest ticket in town! HA! How pretentious does that sound? I only wish that my self-confidence matched my ego!
Nonetheless, last night we had hubby’s cousin and her son over for dinner. And, it’s fall. Fall for [...]
Hubby and I had the rare occasion to utilize the services of a babysitter in order to have a date night. What?!?! I know, seriously! He’d been working so many overtime hours on a project at work that they gave him a nice hefty gift card to Gumbo’s, a local legend here in these parts.
There’s a little cafe in Orangeville, Ontario that I like to go to when visiting my family. They have manage to maintain the same high standards since opening, and their food truly is a delight. One of my particular favorites is their soup of the day. The soups are always high quality, home made and [...]
Long, hot days of summer have driven me far, far away from my stove and oven, and the steamy air has robbed my brain of all but the very least creative ideas for meals. It has only been with the recent approach of fall’s cooler air and school starting again (when I can send one [...]
This recipe is for a twist on oven baked chicken. Gone are the dried out, bland and unexciting chicken pieces of yore, and welcome to moist, tasty, chicken with a gravy that is to die for!
Oven Baked Chicken
12 chicken thighs with bone and skin
1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
salt and pepper
2 tbsp vegetable oil
I recently made this lasagna at a family gathering and it received rave reviews. While nothing terribly special, this home cooked layered fan favorite offers a layer of spinach and ricotta as well as a bechamel sauce on the top that combines with loads of cheese to form a soft yet golden brown topping.
This is a recipe that my family has been making for years. It is a ridiculously tasty dish that also happens to be insanely nutritious and low in fat. Ok, so what’s the downside to all that? Well, it is a bit labor intensive. Like many great Asian-American meals, there is a fair bit of [...]
Almost always in the mood for pasta, I was scrounging around trying to figure out what to make for dinner while at the same time using up bits of things that were in the fridge and freezer. I’m a horrible bit keeper. I’ll keep a bit of this, and a bit of that and before [...]
I admit to being a fan of just about anything pork. Granted, there are some bits of Wilbur that I am not interested in eating despite my half German heritage (think feet, tails, snout…) but on the whole I love me some pork! One of my favorite things to do with pork when I have [...]
Being half German I grew up eating a wide variety of both eastern and western European foods and must say that some were definitely better than others. German food in and of itself is not particularly stunning, but the influences of other European cuisines has helped make German food recognizable the world over.
Originating in Austria, [...]
Winter isn’t quite done with us yet here in Central Texas. A few days ago we were all thinking spring as we were frolicking in the 75 degree sunny weather, and then just yesterday we had snow! Snow is almost unheard of here in Austin, but the white fluffies did fall and even accumulated enough [...]
Now with 10 locations in the southwestern US, Z Tejas is an Austin-born restaurant that incorporates flavors of the southwest into food that is not necessarily southwestern. Think rotisserie chicken that is smoked with the flavors of chilies or pork chops that are marinated in Adobo sauce. This is the kind of food that Z [...]
Ok, so I’ll be the first to admit that putting on a lavish fondue spread for guests is a lot of work that begins days ahead gathering all the exotic ingredients you’ll need for your feast. But, I’ll also be the first to admit that I don’t mind doing the work because it is just [...]
So who doesn’t love a warm and slightly toasty baked goodie smothered with butter for breakfast? I know I certainly do, but I am heartily sick of purchasing these delights from the grocery store or even a bakery (not that there are any of any decent quality around me) because they are full of nasty [...]
I credit my Mother-in-Law, Kay, for giving me my first taste of corn chowder about a million years ago. We were visiting in the heart of winter (long before we moved to Texas) and she served up a heaping bowl of corn chowder yumminess and I fell in love. Of course I’ve made it three [...]
Spaetzle is the German equivalent of pasta – minus all the tedious kneading, rolling and shaping. This Bavarian staple has been consumed in quantity since Medieval Europe, and possibly even earlier. Simply put, spaetzle are noodles that are made with a thick, eggy batter that is then pressed through holes into boiling water. They cook [...]
I’m not entirely sure how this particular cookbook ended up in my VAST collection. I must have been some time during the turmoil of my catering days, but it has sat for some time, neglected, on my shelf and I decided to take it down, dust it off and give it a good once over.
Last spring there was a very damaging hail storm in our area that not only polka dotted our cars but put an end to the barbeque that I had been lovingly using for close to ten years. Granted, it was a cheap BBQ to begin with and the flames were huge due to the gas [...]