Freezing Fresh Herbs

Freezing Fresh Herbs ~ preserve fresh herbs by freezing in olive oil in ice cube trays for fresh herb flavor anytime in soups, stews, roasts and gravies.

Dinner | August 18, 2017 | By

Freezing Fresh Herbs ~ preserve fresh herbs by freezing them in olive oil in ice cube trays for fresh herb flavor all year in soups, stews, roasts and gravies.

Freezing Fresh Herbs ~ preserve fresh herbs by freezing in olive oil in ice cube trays for fresh herb flavor anytime in soups, stews, roasts and gravies.

I know I shouldn’t be fast-forwarding when there’s still summer left, but sometimes I can’t help myself. I’m already thinking about pumpkin creamer, jeans and warm sweaters, cute leather boots, trips to the cider mill and big pots of spicy chili.

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Honey Orange Chicken

Honey Orange Chicken ~ a lighter version with fresh citrus flavor, sautéed vegetables, tender bites of chicken without heavy breading = an easy under-30 minute meal.

Dinner | August 13, 2017 | By

This lighter version of Honey Orange Chicken has fresh citrus flavor, sautéed vegetables, bites of tender chicken, but no heavy breading for an easy, weeknight, under-30 minute meal.

While I was going through A Gouda Life’s index the other day I realized I’ve been sharing a lot of seafood recipes lately, like Creamy Honey Mustard Salmon and Grilled Shrimp Scampi. You wouldn’t guess, but we actually eat a lot of chicken in our house, like this Honey Orange Chicken. Heads up ~ if you’re used to the restaurant version with a thick coating, this isn’t it. But if you’ve been scanning Pinterest for a lighter version of the classic restaurant takeout,  you’ll love this dish, because while you won’t find the chicken buried in a thick breading, you will find it buried in flavor.

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Snickers Cheesecake Bites

Snickers Cheesecake Bites ~ easy decadent 1-2 bite sweet-salty dessert. Pretzel crust topped with creamy cheesecake, chocolate ganache and caramel.

Dessert | August 5, 2017 | By

Snickers Cheesecake Bites ~ decadent, sweet and salty blend starts with a pretzel crust filled with creamy candy-cheesecake drizzled with chocolate ganache and gooey caramel.

Snickers Cheesecake Bites ~ easy decadent 1-2 bite sweet-salty dessert. Pretzel crust topped with creamy cheesecake, chocolate ganache and caramel.

I love a really tasty dessert, but I’ve been known to eat a mediocre dessert or in an ‘emergency’ a handful of animal crackers to satisfy my sugar craving. These Snickers Cheesecake Bites are one of the best desserts around. I may have eaten one. . .or three today alone.

I used to make a full-size Snickers Cheesecake years ago that was a total show stopper but the days of full size anything in our house went by the wayside when we became empty-nesters. It’s much easier to share extras of single-serve or bite-size anything so I repurposed that cheesecake into these Snickers Cheesecake Bites ~ equally fabulous but just because they’re mini doesn’t mean you have to stop at one. 

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Lemon Blueberry Zucchini Bread

Lemon Blueberry Zucchini Bread ~ easy, moist, blueberry packed quick bread, made with shredded zucchini and yogurt, drizzled with lemony glaze

Breakfast, Dessert | July 29, 2017 | By

Lemon Blueberry Zucchini Bread ~ an easy, moist quick bread packed with fresh blueberries and a light burst of lemon. Shredded zucchini and yogurt make moist and the lemony glaze drizzled on top makes it a delicious dessert, brunch or breakfast bread.

Zucchini is one of those unassuming vegetables that effortlessly transforms into a delicious side, ramps up a marinara sauce or in this case, adds moisture a delicious quick bread.

Zucchini are everywhere right now from farm stands to farm markets to our local grocery stores. My daughter’s vegetable bin is already filled with zucchini from her garden. She asked if this recipe was easy to whip up (she’s the mother of two toddlers). The answer is yes ~

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Creamy Honey Mustard Salmon

Creamy Honey Mustard Salmon: crispy pan-seared salmon topped with light, creamy sweet-tangy herbed honey mustard sauce goes stove to table in 20 minutes.

Dinner | July 25, 2017 | By

Creamy Honey Mustard Salmon ~ crispy pan-seared salmon topped with a light, creamy sweet-tangy fresh-herb honey mustard sauce.

I don’t have anything against take-out. I really don’t ~ in fact take-out has saved the day in my house just like it has in yours. So when I ask ‘would you skip takeout if I told you I had a really delicious, healthy recipe that goes from stove to table in under 20 minutes?’, I ask this with all due respect to the takeout industry. But would you? Skip takeout that is.  

How about Creamy Honey Mustard Salmon, a 20 minute meal with a sauce so ridiculously good you’ll not only want to eat with a spoon but you’ll be looking for other things to serve it over.  Do I have your attention yet?

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Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad - charred sweet corn, pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans + bacon and a delicious creamy, tangy, slightly spicy dressing.

Side Dish | July 21, 2017 | By

Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad ~ an easy summer side you won’t find at every picnic. Fresh sweet corn sautéed in bacon drippings blended with pasta, peppers, tomatoes, black beans and of course  crispy bacon tossed in a delicious creamy, tangy slightly spicy dressing.

Dannnng! I’m late to the table again and just when I ditched my 8-track for a Walkman. Kidding of course, but this time it’s Mexican Street Corn ~ would you believe I just tried it? 

My daughter has mentioned 2 or 10 times “we” should try making it. I know that’s code for “Mom, make this next time I’m over”.  The truth is I drug my feet because it just didn’t sound appealing. Mayonnaise slathered on beautiful, fresh, sweeter than sweet summer corn is almost sacrilegious.

But practically every time I went on Pinterest I saw so many recipes for Mexican Street Corn I figured I could sacrifice a single ear of corn to try it. The only thing was, my daughter wasn’t over that day. Oops ~ but OMG the flavor had me wishing for a whole bushel of it ~ and not just Mexican Street Corn, but Mexican Street Corn ~ everything.

This Mexican Street Corn Pasta Salad is like pasta salad and Mexican Street Corn had a baby. I’ll leave you with that.

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Creamy Rosé Pasta

Creamy Rosé Pasta ~ tomato cream sauce ~ with sautéed mushrooms, blended with fresh pasta and is ready in under 30 minutes.

Dinner | July 17, 2017 | By

I hate to blow my own horn. . .who I am kidding ~ toot-toot. You’ll do the same when you make this Creamy Rosé Pasta ~ so quick, so easy and so delicious that I actually felt like I was being rewarded for my laziness today.

No Rosé wine was actually sacrificed in the making of the sauce (though I would definitely recommend a glass with it); the name comes from its beautiful color. 

Creamy Rosé Pasta (sometimes called tomato cream sauce) is a quick marinara made creamy (and rose-colored) with heavy cream and parmesan cheese. Since fresh-made pasta cooks more quickly than dry, it’s the ideal choice for this weeknight one-pot meal that’s designed for busy people who crave a good meal at the end of the day ~ isn’t that everyone? 

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Grilled Shrimp Scampi

Grilled Shrimp Scampi: a twist on the classic-fresh shrimp grilled basted in rich, buttery-garlic white wine sauce, topped with fresh mixed herb gremolata.

A couple of weeks ago I ooohed and aaahed at the adorable baby rabbits small enough to fit in a cereal bowl romping around my yard. Sometimes they’d come right up to the patio door. That was then. Now those little darlings have munched their way through my perennials and moved on to the vegetables like it’s their own private product market. Thankfully they don’t seem to have an interest in my herbs. Yet. So while I still have herbs left, it’s time to make Grilled Shrimp Scampi ~ a twist on the classic ~ fresh shrimp grilled and basted in a rich, buttery-garlic white wine sauce, topped with fresh mixed herb gremolata. This meal is quick enough to enjoy on a weeknight, but if you’re entertaining this summer, this is your meal. As light as white summer wine and loaded with flavor.

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Raspberry Mojito

Raspberry Mojito ~ a refreshing twist on the classic Mojito ~ tangy lime, a blast of cool, refresthing mint, a little sugar + fresh summer berries.

I’m usually a wine drinker but there’s something about summertime and the over abundance of everything from sunshine to fresh produce that practically begs for a cold, fruity cocktail like this Raspberry Mojito. I tasted my first classic Mojito ~ which isn’t fruity at all, but a citrusy combination of rum blended with a blast of cool, refreshing mint, tangy lime and a little sugar (stay with me, I’ll get there) ~ on a gorgeous sunny day in Mallory Square , a place in Key West where vacationers and islanders alike gather to watch the sunset. Some say Mallory Square is one of the best places to see a sunset anywhere. I can’t argue. It was breathtaking and that’s not the Mojitos talking. This Raspberry Mojito is a rum-based burst of summer fruit flavor with a twist of citrus and if you’d prefer a mocktail, skip the rum without sacrificing taste a bit.

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Garlic Butter Scallops Appetizer

This Garlic Butter Scallops Appetizer shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. The following content is intended for readers who are 21 or older. #Chardonnation #NotableSummer #CollectiveBias

Garlic Butter Scallops Appetizer: tender, pan-seared scallops in a light, lemony garlic butter sauce. Serve alone or nestled in risotto.

Summer is probably my favorite time to entertain. Fresh ingredients, beautiful weather ~ it automatically puts everyone in a good mood and entertaining in the summer is about as easy as it gets.

What more do you need for a fun evening than family or a few friends, tasty food, some good wine and music to set the tone? I like to keep the food simple, yet special like this Garlic Butter Scallops Appetizer and while I used to find the wine aisle a confusing place, that’s no longer so. Read on and see what I’ve discovered.  

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