Pork Ragu over Creamy Polenta

Pork Ragu with Creamy PolentaWhen someone says that a recipe is idiot-proof, it’s usually for one of two reasons.  Either the recipe is so unbelievably simple that you can’t screw it up OR while it does have several steps and ingredients, it’s very forgiving of any shenanigans you throw at it.  This is definitely one of the latter.  This is one of those dishes that is super impressive and incredibly delicious, but most of all, it’s really hard to mess up.  Believe me, I tried. [Read more...]

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Caramelized Fennel with Goat Cheese

DSC_0195Quick.  Before spring comes in earnest.  Get in all of your comfort-food-eating.  And your cheese-melting. And your warm spice toasting.  Because spring is coming soon and it will be all strawberries and asparagus. I know it’ll be a month or two, or even three (God help us), before I’ll really be enjoying spring produce, but a girl can dream, can’t she?  I mean, the weather forecast for next week promises a day with balmy 47 degree temperatures.  I’m busting out the shorts.

Just kidding.  I don’t wear shorts. Ew. [Read more...]

Corn, Green Chile, and Potato Soup

Corn, Green Chile, and Potato SoupI like to think of myself as adventurous in the kitchen.  Apart from my recent cooking rut, I usually like to try a variety of new recipes, use new ingredients, come up with variations on old recipes.  But there are some things that I always wind up making the same way, over and over again.  Because they’re good, and good is good.  Don’t fix what ain’t broke and all that.  Potato soup was one of those for me. [Read more...]

Roasted Carrot Salad with Cumin Vinaigrette

Roasted Carrot Salad with Cumin VinaigretteHi.  I’m back.  I took a little hiatus for a week or so there, because with the holidays and all, it was just too much.  Too much fun, too much running around, too much gorging myself on festive holiday food.  All that.  And more.  But here I am, back at it, with a complete lack of originality in giving you a salad in time for your New Year’s resolutions.  Don’t worry, since I’m still me, I’ll have a buttery, sweet confection for you in time to celebrate the Epiphany in a few days (and completely sabotage your resolutions).  You’re welcome. [Read more...]

Sweet Potato Gratin with Sage and Garlic

Sweet Potato Gratin with Sage and GarlicIf there’s a holiday that makes me feel warm and happy and nostalgic, it’s Thanksgiving.  I feel about Thanksgiving the way that most people reserve for Christmas.  Some of my happiest childhood memories revolve around Thanksgiving.  Because of the food, yes.  And because of big parties with family and friends, of course.  But mostly, I really love Thanksgiving because of the time that I get to spend with my dad in the kitchen, helping him cook.   [Read more...]

Stuffed Carnival Squash with Wild Rice, Cheddar, and Apples

Stuffed Carnival Squash with Wild Rice, Cheddar, and ApplesCan we talk about kitchen disasters?  About food experiments gone awry?  And things that in theory, should be delicious, but just aren’t?

Those things happen to everyone who attempts to cook, whether they’re a pro or a novice.  Sometimes even more often when you’re an experienced cook, because you get daring and excitable.  Now I don’t consider myself a pro, but daring and excitable?  Check, check.  Mostly just excitable.  Sometimes I get ideas that I think will be the best thing ever, but turn out, in reality, to be the okayest thing ever.  After many years of this kind of thing happening  in my kitchen, I sometimes get a little foresight as this is happening.  It usually happens when I keep thinking, “And what if I add…?” And I keep repeating that thought one too many times.  I know I’m going overboard  but I just. can’t. stop. [Read more...]

Creamy Cauliflower with Cheddar and Dijon

Creamy Cauliflower with Dijon and CheddarOne of my favorite things to do is to take dishes that my family ate when I was younger and remake them in my own kitchen, with little changes to suit what my own little family likes.  It’s fun, and even if it’s not quite like I remember mom or grandma making, most of the time, we like it all the same.  And sometimes, sometimes…. it’s even a little better?  This is one of those.  And perhaps, most notably, this is the recipe that started Project: Get My Husband To Eat Cauliflower.  That’s right, it was after he tried this recipe, and loved it, that I realized that I might actually be able to get him to eat it in other incarnations, too.  This is a cauliflower recipe that might get you to like cauliflower for actually being cauliflower. [Read more...]

Pork Chops with Apples, Onion, and Thyme

Pork Chops with Apples, Onion, and ThymeA lot of quick meals happen in this house.  Have I mentioned that there are TWO tiny little humans here who both need my completely undivided attention, without fail, about twenty minutes before we should be eating dinner?  It’s perfectly delightful I assure you, but it doesn’t leave a lot of time for lengthy dinner prep most nights.  That doesn’t mean we don’t eat well. We do!  It just ain’t isn’t fancy.  And there ain’t aren’t any pictures.  Sorry I was trying to but cute with all that ain’t, but it’s just not cute; bad grammar isn’t cool, kids. [Read more...]

Bacon Bourbon BBQ Chicken Kebabs

Bacon Bourbon Barbecue KebabsOftentimes, I find an simple-looking recipe, tag it for a weeknight on sight, and go about my business.  Come the weeknight in question, I gather up my ingredients only to realize upon reading the recipe that the recipe has some weird quirks that make it not quite so simple. It might be lots of prep (endless chopping, anyone?), or a sauce that needs a bit too much attention at an hour when my children are both seemingly losing their minds, or, worst of all, the use of more than the absolute minimum requirement of pots and pans.  Recipes that sound simple, but aren’t, are the bane of my weeknight existence.  Sure, there’s a place for involved, slow, layered recipes.  Tuesday night is not that place. [Read more...]

Meatball Salad with Buttermilk Blue Cheese Dressing

Meatball Salad with Buttermilk Blue Cheese DressingThe jig is up.  I think it’s become pretty apparent that I have a weakness for putting things on top of a pile of lettuce and calling them salad.  Steak Salad.  Falafel Salad.  BLT Salad. Cheeseburger Salad, for goodness’ sake.  If you’ve eaten it on a bun, in a tortilla, or on a stick, I’ve most likely made it into a salad at some point.  So why not meatball salad?  It was the next logical step.  Would you like some blue cheese with that?  Yes, please. [Read more...]