Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Thirsty Thursdays: Sparkling Apple and Cranberry Champagne Cocktail

Sparkling Apple and Cranberry Champagne Cocktail
Sparkling Apple and Cranberry Champagne Cocktail

Check out today's post on A Cocktail Life for this celebratory drink!

The Year in Review - 2014

The Year in Review - 2014

At last we've come to the end of 2014 and not a moment too soon. I'm not gonna lie, this was not my favorite year and I'm looking forward to waking up tomorrow morning with a fresh new attitude and endless possibilities.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Glazed Orange Cranberry Crumb Loaf

Glazed Orange Cranberry Crumb Loaf

OK, so Christmas is over and the long Christmas weekend is over and you've eaten all the cookies in the house. You might have even made some public statements about being sick of sweets and ready for a healthy new year. But... the new year isn't here quite yet and you're getting hungry again and you do sort of still want something sweet. Or maybe that's just me.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Of Travels and Lighthouses and Christmases Long, Long Ago

Of Travels and Lighthouses and Christmases Long, Long Ago
OK, not long, long ago. Just two years ago. But I'm a little obsessed with Christmas music these days and the song It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year with the line "And tales of the glories of Christmases long, long ago" was running through my head. Just like the line from The Carpenter's Home For the Holidays that reads "I met a man who lives in Tennessee and he was headin' for Pennsylvania and some homemade pumpkin pie" was looping in my brain the other day when I made pumpkin pie. I'll be over this soon, I promise.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Double Chocolate Pumpkin Pie

Double Chocolate Pumpkin Pie

I have Christmas music playing pretty much non-stop these days. When I'm at my desk, when I'm at the gym...it's my annual binge. And, come the new year, it will be banished again until after next Thanksgiving. One of my favorites has always been Home for the Holidays by The Carpenters and it's made me associate Christmas with pumpkin pie.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Chocolate and Peanut Butter Crumb Bars

Chocolate and Peanut Butter Crumb Bars

I like giving homemade food gifts because I think the love and effort that goes into making them truly expresses to the recipient that they were important enough to you to make the effort. And so I spent the morning of my dearest friend's birthday in the kitchen, baking these treats for her. I also have a treat for you today because Peanut Butter & Co. will send 4 jars of their peanut butter, in your choice of flavors, to the winner of my giveaway below.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Thirsty Thursdays: Hot Buttered Rum Nog

Hot Buttered Rum Nog
Hot Buttered Rum Nog

Check out today's post on A Cocktail Life for this warm and comforting seasonal favorite.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Morsel Snack Cakes

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Morsel Snack Cakes

If you think that I'm capable of walking past a package of chocolate chips stuffed with peanut butter then it's obvious that we've never met. It was definitely one of those "stopped in my tracks" moments in the baking aisle when there, next to the chocolate chips and the peanut butter chips, was the combo of my dreams. Thank you, Nestle, for your new DelightFulls filled baking morsels. Or snacking morsels, as the case may be. Or just buy two and do both.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Savory Cheesecake with Honeyed Walnuts


Tracking PixelToday I have the pleasure of working with Mirassou on some great holiday entertaining ideas.

Savory Cheesecake with Honeyed Walnuts

We're deep into holiday entertaining mode around here. Cocktail parties, appetizers before dinner, something special for New Year's Eve perhaps? I have some great wine and that needed a great appetizer to match. Wine and cheese is a given but a savory cheesecake is so much more impressive. And I promise you there won't be a sliver left because it's just too good.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Banana Cashew Pancakes

Banana Cashew Pancakes

Have I ever mentioned to you that I am a cashew thief? I mean that, if there's a bowl of mixed nuts around, I will surreptitiously steal all the cashews. And if you happen to comment on how few cashews there are in the bowl, I will stand there and complain to you about how the mixed nut companies are shorting us on cashews while pretending there is an equal number of them in the can. This has happened.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

The Month in Review - November 2014

The Month in Review - November 2014

Excuse me but can somebody please tell me what happened to the first part of December? These days it seems like I blink and I'm handing out Halloween candy, blink again and I'm roasting Thanksgiving turkey and and now all my get-it-done at the start of the month December plans are late. Some of you may be getting Christmas cards for Valentine's Day if this keeps up.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Easy Baked Rice Balls (Arancini)

Easy Baked Rice Balls (Arancini)

Tracking Pixel Today I have the pleasure of partnering with Minute® Rice to create this mouth-watering recipe. As always, thank you for supporting the products I love and use in my kitchen.

We all have our guilty pleasures and, while mine are usually sweet, rice balls have the savory honor. There's a gourmet Italian market dangerously close to my apartment and they make the most perfect arancini. They also have an amazing produce selection which is why I go there...cough, cough...OK, moving right along.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Mediterranean Tapas Potatoes

Mediterranean Tapas Potatoes

Every year it seems like I spend the month of December coming up with creative ways to feed guests. Oh, planning a dinner is easy enough but what about those in-between, buffet type foods. A cold cut platter, cheeses, crudites, something more special?. But what?

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Cheesy Polenta and Spinach Baked Eggs

Cheesy Polenta and Spinach Baked Eggs

If you recall, a couple of weeks ago I was whining about not being motivated to make a fuss over breakfast and calling it a successful meal when I've actually poured milk into my bowl of cereal. But, it's the holiday season and making a good breakfast for someone you love or visiting guests is such an act of love. And, in fact, it is on holidays and birthdays that I haul out the bacon and eggs and French toast to make people happy at breakfast. But that's kind of the problem because the recipients are happy but the cook is eating leftover cold French toast crumbs while cleaning the kitchen. Wow, I guess I wasn't done whining.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Chocolate Gingerbread Crumb Cake


The post-Thanksgiving weekend comes with certain traditions around here. Pumpkin and turkey decorations are put away, I can hear the Christmas tree vendors setting up down on the sidewalk and my kitchen smells like gingerbread.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Thirsty Thursdays: Hot Cocoa Martini

Hot Cocoa Martini
Hot Cocoa Martini

Check out this special Friday after Thanksgiving post on A Cocktail Life for a comforting treat in boozy form!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Gratitude, Tears and Reflection

Gratitude, Tears and Reflection
Autumn beauty in the city.
No recipe today, my friends.  Those of you cooking tomorrow’s feast already know what you’re making.  But before we break for the long weekend, I wanted to say a few personal words about life and love and this past year.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Savory Butternut Squash Bread Pudding

Savory Butternut Squash Bread Pudding

When it comes to Thanksgiving foods, I tend to favor tradition. There's comfort in the familiar and expected. However, what exactly constitutes traditional and familiar is different in every family and culture. In my house, we prefer butternut squash over the better known sweet potato side dish and so that is the flavor we expect.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Salted Caramel Apple Pie

Salted Caramel Apple Pie

Apple pie is a Thanksgiving tradition in my house. And Thanksgiving foods are, after all, about tradition. So while I'm not willing to forgo this familiar treat, I've been known to mess with it a little over the years. Last year I did away with the top crust altogether in favor of a peanut butter crumb topping.  And I don't recall hearing any complaints about it, either.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Buttery Breakfast Quick Bread

Buttery Breakfast Quick Bread


Lately I've been thinking a lot about breakfast. And that's pretty unusual for me since it's never been a meal I gave much thought to. It always seems like, no matter how early I get up, I have so much to do before the day "officially" starts and I'm always running behind. So breakfast ends up being a bowl of cold cereal. And I'll admit that I've been known to skip the milk and just eat the cereal bits like little snack bites in between other morning chores. So not inspiring.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Thirsty Thursdays: The Maple Leaf

The Maple Leaf
The Maple Leaf

Check out today's post on A Cocktail Life for this flavorful cool weather cocktail!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Homemade Za'atar Pita Chips and Quick Labneh Dip

Homemade Za'atar Pita Chips and Quick Labneh Dip

If you follow me on Instagram (and if you're not, why aren't you??) then you know that my tag line says "currently sprinkling za'atar on everything."  I'm obsessed with it and with labneh (strained Greek yogurt cheese) too.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Roasted Autumn Vegetable Pot Pie

Roasted Autumn Vegetable Pot Pie

What are your cold weather comfort foods?  I have a few but pot pies are high on the list because they're fully enclosed comfort.  I don't have to make side dishes for a roast or add bread or croutons to a hot soup. Here the hot, creamy, comforting filling is wrapped with delicious pastry dough and served in my own individual portion. Just tuck me into bed with a good movie and this is cold night dinner heaven.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Maple Walnut Shortbread Cookies

Maple Walnut Shortbread Cookies

Cookie Week is in full swing and I'm back today with another of my favorite cookie treats. Despite my love of chocolate and my obsession with peanut butter, my all time favorite type of cookie is shortbread. Thick, crumbly, buttery and not overly sweet. Just pour me a cup of tea alongside a good stack of them and I'm a happy woman.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Want Some Cookies?

Girl in the Little Red Kitchen Bakeshop Cookies
Little Red Kitchen Bakeshop Cookie Flavors
All week long, several of my fellow bloggers and I are celebrating Cookie Week with great recipes and an awesome giveaway.  But today I have an extra special giveaway for you. My friend Susan of The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen now has an online bakeshop and her cookies put mine to shame.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Dark and Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies

Dark and Crunchy Peanut Butter Cookies

Welcome to Cookie Week.  Several of my fellow food bloggers and I have some great recipes for you and an awesome giveaway.  Scroll down past the recipe for prize and entry information. And, as a bonus, I'll have an additional, extra special giveaway (hint: it involves free cookies) for you tomorrow.

Cookie Week Sponsor and Giveaway Information

Welcome to the second annual Cookie Week, hosted by Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Susan of The Girl In the Little Red Kitchen! We've teamed together with 10 other talented bloggers to bring you 5 fantastic days of cookie recipes to get you in to the holiday spirits.  Now is the time to break out the flour, butter, sugar and eggs.  Bring your friends and family together for cookie exchanges or a giant baking party, we have got you covered!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Thirsty Thursdays: Caramel Apple Martini

Caramel Apple Martini
Caramel Apple Martini

Check out today's post on A Cocktail Life for this autumn drink that's sure to wow holiday guests!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Month in Review - October 2014

The Month in Review - October 2014

It's finally chilly in New York and the leaves are turning fast. Actually the whole month was fast and I'm not sure how it can already be almost November. The food around here has definitely taken a turn toward autumn fruits and warming comfort. It also seems to have been fixated on caramel, not that there's anything wrong with that.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Apple Pie Crumb Bread with Cinnamon Caramel

Apple Pie Crumb Bread with Cinnamon Caramel

Have you all noticed how popular coconut oil has become? Everywhere I look I see recipes with it and articles talking about the health benefits. I confess that I'm not the biggest fan of coconut flavor and I mostly just like it in my pina coladas.  Still, this merited some research.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Tender Slow Cooked Roast in Red Wine Reduction

Tender Slow Cooked Roast in Red Wine Reduction

Sundays in the chilly autumn make me want to cook something low and slow. Something mouthwatering that will make my whole house smell delicious and dinner will be an eagerly awaited event. Something like a Sunday roast

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Apple and Gorgonzola Biscuit Tarts

Apple and Gorgonzola Biscuit Tarts

My good friend Renee and I are bonded over our mutual love of food, cocktails, photography and doggies. Not necessarily in that order, of course. She's also the creator of the Magnolia Days blog where she shows off her talents. But today she's on vacation, eating and drinking her way through Germany, and she asked me to keep her readers entertained with a good recipe. My pleasure, Renee! And I expect you to bring me back a strudel.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Farmer's Market Deconstructed Apple Pie

Farmer's Market Deconstructed Apple Pie

I'm a big fan of our city's green markets so it was a huge honor to be invited to do a cooking demo at one of them this past Saturday. I spent the week before going over everything with the market director and wandering around the various stalls, with their dizzying array of options, trying to decide what to make. For all the possibilities, though, my eyes kept coming back to the glorious display of apples.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Ginger Poached Pears with Gorgonzola and Walnuts

Ginger Poached Pears with Gorgonzola and Walnuts


When summer fruit season ends, I usually mourn until I hit the market and discover the autumn bounty of figs, apples and pears.  Especially the pears. For out of hand, sweet juice dripping down your chin, eating, I'm partial to Bartletts.  But for any cooking or baking, I turn to the slightly firmer Boscs. I also happen to think they're the prettiest.  What? You don't think pears are pretty?  Pfft.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Marbled Chocolate Pumpkin Bread with Pumpkin Caramel

Marbled Chocolate Pumpkin Bread with Pumpkin Caramel

I don't understand how it's nearly the middle of October already.  And I certainly don't understand why this is my first pumpkin bread of the season.  I normally like to greet the first nip in the air with the aroma of fresh baked pumpkin bread.  Oh, well, still not to late.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Nutty Peanut Buttery Caramel Apples

Nutty Peanut Buttery Caramel Apples

My fellow holiday food bloggers and I are cooking up Halloween treats today.  Mine aren't spooky but they're totally holiday ready!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Hey, was that a nip I just felt in the air?  Is that quiet from the fact that the constant hum of the air conditioner has been turned off and the windows opened?  This weekend was the first time this season that I wore a jacket and enjoyed warming up under my down comforter.  I love summer and I tell myself I will hold onto it as long as possible but every year, the first chilly day, a leaf falling at my feet and a display of pumpkins sends me into a daze of autumn happiness.  I love autumn!

Thursday, October 2, 2014