Category Archives: recipes

Mom’s Broccoli Salad

In case you need a last side salad as the summer grill season starts to end…

Mom’s Broccoli Salad

1 large bundle of broccoli, broken into florets
1/3 c. craisins or raisins
1/3 c. finely minced sweet onion
4 slices of crisp bacon

1 1/2 c. mayonaise
1/2 c. sugar
2T. vinegar

Pour the sauce over the other ingredients. Mix well. Enjoy!

Chicken and Pasta Salad

This is a “summer dinner” perfect for gardeners with lots of tomatoes and basil and everyone who needs to make a quick meal without turning on the oven!

1 pound of pasta: penne, bowties…
3 tablespoons lemon juice
4 oz. feta, crumbled
1 pound or so of fresh tomatoes, diced
3 cups or so of chopped rotisserie chicken (skin removed) or grilled boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup torn fresh basil leaves
salt and pepper to taste

Cook the pasta. Toss all the ingredients together. Enjoy! Serves 6+


Last weekend I made the cider-brined pork tenderloin and served Ann Barlow’s apple coffeecake with caramel frosting for dessert.  Tonight we are having risotto with squash and pancetta.  Just a few recipe ideas for those who might need one!

Balsamic Pasta Salad

I used to add Extra Virgin Olive Oil to the dressing, but it’s just not necessary. This has gone over well both times I’ve made it and it’s super simple.

1 pound bowtie pasta – cooked, rinsed and drained
3+ roma tomatos, diced
3-4 oz. feta cheese
a little bit of finely chopped vidalia onion
cooked chicken, cubed (optional – fine without if it’s a side, with makes a great meal)

Make dressing
1/4 c. balsamic vinegar
1+ Tbs. dijon mustard (to taste)
dash sugar
salt and pepper
2 Tbs. mayonaise (I used helman’s light — the light blue one.)

Toss dressing over other stuff. Refresh with a little more balsamic if it gets dry.

Pesto (a recipe Italian-style)

My maternal grandmother is 100% Italian and a cook by trade, so you can imagine she makes the most delicious food. One thing that is frustrating about it is that she cooks entirely by instinct for all of her signature dishes, and even if she tries to write it down just the way she does it, it never comes out the same for anyone else. She makes the world’s most delicious homemade ravioli and also pierogies (she married a Polish man, so she learned to cook Polish food as well.) Anyhow, when she relates how to make something, it does not come out in standard recipe form. In her honor (and because, I really do make it with taste and texture as my guides: Continue reading

Chicken with parmesan, garlic and herb crust

I got this from the Sweetpea Cooks! blog and we’ve really enjoyed it with lots of veggies on the side (such as green beans sauteed in garlic and steamed carrots.) It calls for fresh parsley, but I’ve made it with dried parsley and basil and also with fresh basil and dried parsley and it was good both times. We’re big fans of basil, though… it’s in my family taste palate. My grandma puts basil in everything. You should hear her talk smack about oregano.

Chicken with parmesan, garlic, and herb crust
Continue reading

Wimpies (aka Sloppy Joes)

I haven’t posted a recipe since Lexi was born and I want to get back into the habit. We’ve been eating a lot of easier recipes lately, for obvious reasons. Last night we had Wimpies. Some people call these Sloppy Joes. This is the recipe I have been eating since childhood, so I am rather partial to it. Vegetarians can make this with TVP, if you like the taste of that. Continue reading

Chicken Corn Chowder

Mike requested that I start making more soups this winter, so I have been working on Chicken Corn Chowder the last few weeks, combining several recipes and playing around. We’re pretty pleased with it.

Chicken Corn Chowder Continue reading

Cornbread Muffins

We’ve had these a lot in the last two weeks (with Mom’s Chili and Chicken Corn Chowder) and they are a family favorite. Kate and Mike give ’em two thumbs up for taste and I give them two thumbs up for being easy to make!

Cornbread Muffins Continue reading

Mom’s Chili

If you are an astute reader of this blog, you probably know that I love my mother’s cooking. Last night I made a big pot of her chili and thought I’d share the recipe with y’all. It’s a great basic chili recipe with lots of flavor that I (a non-chili aficionado) think tastes good even without sour cream and shredded cheese, which is saying a lot. It tastes better the second day, as chili often does. Mom used to make this sans-meat when we were vegetarians, though I am not sure if she added more beans. Let me know if you are curious about the vegetarian version and I will pass along any questions!

Continue reading

Cheesy Chicken, Artichoke and Mushroom Bake

I serve this with rice as a complete meal. It’s one of Mike’s favorites and something he frequently requests, even though it came from a healthy homestyle cookbook of my mother’s and has 7g of fat in each of the four (fairly generous) servings! Continue reading

London Broil and Mashed Sweet Potatoes

I typically try to post a recipe I’ve actually cooked recently, because then its fresh in my mind and I am more excited about it. So, I’ll share what I made last night: London Broil marinaded along the lines of a recipe I got from Laura Leigh, dear friend and occasional commentor on this blog, with our baby spinach, cranberry and walnut salad and mashed sweet potatoes on the side. Mashed sweet potatoes are easy and a nice change of pace. Peel, cube and boil like regular mashed potatoes. When soft, make the right consistency with milk and butter (a little less butter than you would for regular mashed potatoes). Sweeten with real maple syrup and brown sugar (roughly 2:1 MS:BS ratio).