Greek Layered Appetizer Dip

mediterranean dip - layers of hummus,tzatziki, tomatoes and olives garnished with fresh dill and served with pita and vegetables

Appetizers & Beverages | April 25, 2019 | By

Greek Layered Appetizer ~ hummus, tzatziki, olives and feta layered for a simple, healthy dip. Add chicken for a light entrée.

A weekend in Northern Michigan for a girls’ wine weekend meant lots of laughs and good food. Everyone brought their favorite wine, dishes to share and . . . I did mention wine? There was plenty.

Chips and dip and sheet pans of pizza rolls with ranch dressing were brought out for late nights. We could have used a healthy appetizer like this Greek Layered Dip. I guess that’s why there’s “next time”.

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Strawberry Bread Recipe

glazed sliced strawberry bread with whole strawberry garnish

Breakfast, Dessert | April 19, 2019 | By

Strawberry Bread recipe ~ moist, lightly sweet bread loaded with fresh strawberries and topped with a simple cream cheese glaze.

This Strawberry Bread is a simple to make quick bread, meaning no yeast or kneading and it takes full advantage of the abundant crop of Florida strawberries coming north this time of year.

Keep the recipe on hand in early June too when bright red, sun-sweetened homegrown berries can’t be beat. Because the bread isn’t overly sweet, a thick slice is delicious with morning coffee and equally good for dessert in the evening. Bonus: it whips up in less than 10 minutes.

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Easy Soft Pretzel Bites

easy soft pretzel bites with everything bagel seasoning served with a bowl of cheese sauce

Appetizers & Beverages | April 10, 2019 | By

Easy Soft Pretzel Bites ~ Made from canned refrigerated biscuit dough generously sprinkled with Everything but the Bagel Seasoning and baked until warm, golden, lightly crisp outside and soft inside. Enjoy with cheese sauce or add to a charcuterie board for a unique twist.

Warm, fresh from the oven salty pretzels dipped in warm, gooey cheese. One of my favorite pub appetizers and today they’re getting an upgrade.

Everything but the Bagel Seasoning ~ an outrageously good balance of sea salt, garlic, onion, poppy seeds and black and white sesame seeds. Mmmm . . . did I mention garlicky? Basically everything you ever wanted in seasoning and the thing that takes these pretzel bites to the next level.

These bite size soft pretzels come hot and fresh from the oven liberally seasoned with Everything but the Bagel Seasoning and are served up with a pot of golden, gooey melted cheese sauce. Life just got a little better.

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Brown Butter Honey Glazed Carrots

Brown Butter Honey Glazed Carrots ~ tender carrots roasted in a delicious nutty, brown butter honey-garlic sauce.

Side Dish | April 5, 2019 | By

Brown Butter Honey Glazed Carrots ~ tender carrots oven roasted and glazed in a delicious nutty, brown butter honey-garlic sauce. 

Almost every family has a picky eater. Mine ate peanut butter and jelly every single day of first grade. Growing up, she stubbornly refused to eat a vegetable other than corn and potatoes. She called carrots “the devil’s vegetable”.

She loved chicken (still does) and couldn’t pass up a french fry if her life depended upon it (still can’t). For the record, she still won’t eat a carrot but if you do and you’re looking for a simple, gourmet level side dish, this is it.

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Au Gratin Potatoes

Easy Au Gratin Potatoes ~ layers of tender potatoes in a creamy, cheesy sauce and golden brown slightly crispy top. A classic comfort food side dish.

Side Dish | March 26, 2019 | By

Au Gratin Potatoes ~ easy classic recipe for tender sliced potatoes blanketed in layers of creamy, cheesy sauce and a golden, slightly crispy top.

If you’ve already started planning your Easter menu a big high five to your organizational skills. To the rest of us frantically scrolling through Pinterest the day before the holiday, we’re kindred spirits. We’re not alone and I have us all covered.

There’s no better sidekick to that Easter ham than pretty much anything blanketed in layers of creamy, über cheesy sauce. Enter: Au Gratin Potatoes or if you got an instant pot for Christmas and are still waiting to take it for a spin, how about the BEST Mac and Cheese.

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Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

carrot cake cupcakes ~ easy recipe from scratch shows cream cheese frosted cupcakes sprinkled with finely chopped pecans.

Dessert | March 15, 2019 | By

Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting ~ easy Easter dessert recipe from scratch! Freshly grated carrots and applesauce make these cupcakes moist and delicious. Top with homemade cream cheese frosting and finely chopped pecans.

I’m not sure if it’s a blessing or a curse when you learn to make your favorite dessert at home. The only thing I can say about these Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting right now is that latest batch is gone. Completely and totally gone because I didn’t trust myself to have so many of them in the house.

I sent some home with my daughter and donated the rest to the YMCA.  After my workout, the only thing left was an empty container and I haven’t gotten them off my mind since. 

They’re cupcakes that act like a muffin (at least in my book) because they contain fresh carrots. That gives us license to have one with our morning coffee without judgement. Boom. 

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Classic French Onion Soup

French Onion Soup ~ classic soup loaded with caramelized onions + a rich, flavor-packed beef-wine broth. Top with toasted croutons and gooey melted cheese.

Dinner, Soup | March 10, 2019 | By

Classic French Onion Soup ~ recipe inspired by two of my favorite chefs, Ina Garten and Julia Child. Caramelized onions in rich, flavor-loaded beef-wine broth topped with toasted croutons and gooey, melted Gruyere cheese.

Whenever my daughter sees French Onion Soup on the menu, she orders it.  It’s been this way since she was a child. From the time they were small, we encouraged them to order for themselves in restaurants. Served us right, I guess because although she professed to love French Onion Soup, she really only liked the soup-soaked croutons and gooey melted cheese. Who could blame her?

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Spicy New Orleans Style Shrimp

spicy new orleans style shrimp ~ cooked shrimp in spicy sauce in the skillet plus lemon wedge and crusty bread.

Appetizers & Beverages, Dinner | February 27, 2019 | By

Spicy New Orleans Style Shrimp ~ in time for Mardi Gras ~ easy, tasty baked shrimp in a rich, spicy buttery Cajun sauce served over rice or with crusty bread.

We spent a few days this winter in New Orleans. My one regret is not staying long enough to taste more of the amazing seafood but that means a return trip is in order.

Spicy New Orleans Style Shrimp is a one-pan, any-night meal loaded with spicy flavor. Don’t limit it to Mardi Gras though. Serve it up anytime you’re craving spicy seafood with rice, some good crusty bread and a few lemon wedges.

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Greek Stuffed Peppers

greek stuffed peppers ~ red bell peppers filled with greek seasoned ground turkey, feta, orzo, spinach and chickpeas baked in a Greek flavored tomato-herb sauce.

Dinner | February 22, 2019 | By

Greek Stuffed Peppers recipe ~ ground turkey, orzo, feta cheese, spinach and chickpeas baked in bell peppers and a Greek-style tomato-herb sauce.

I still *occasionally* eat pizza rolls, have a heavy hand with salt and rarely pass up dessert so when I created and fell in love with this Greek Stuffed Peppers recipe I couldn’t wait to share it with you.

I’ve been stuffing peppers with my favorite flavors for a while now. It’s a great option if you’ve indulged over the last few weeks months like I *may* have for an easy, feel good healthy comfort dinner.

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Irish Guinness Beef Stew

Irish Guinness Beef Stew: chunks of tender, seared beef, potatoes, onions and carrots in a thick, stew made more robust with the addition of Guinness beer.

Dinner, Soup | February 19, 2019 | By

Irish Guinness Beef Stew ~ tender seared beef, chunks of potatoes, onions and carrots in a thick rich beef-Guinness gravy.

St. Patrick’s Day isn’t complete for my sister-in-law Gloria without hats and strands of beads for the group, including my reluctant brother-in-law. Irish green shirts, a round or three of drinks, plenty of laughs and some good Irish food like this Irish Guinness Beef Stew round out the day.

Her enthusiasm is contagious; it’s a party you don’t want to miss. This stew has everything you need for St. Patrick’s Day: chunks of tender seared beef, potatoes, onions and carrots in a thick stew enhanced with the flavor of Guinness beer. Just don’t forget the hats and beads.

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