Category Archives: Uncategorized

Frozen meals – not-so-bad convenience or evil food?

I can’t help but be tempted by some of these foods (that’s one of my favorites pictured above-Shrimp Hacao from Fresh and Easy).  What do you think? From writer Anneli Rufus on

“When TV dinners first entered American supermarkets in the mid-1950s, serving or eating them implied that one didn’t know how to cook” — full article here

Fresh Blueberry Tart

Made this for breakfast today.  Thawed the puff pastry overnight in the refrigerator, prepped the blueberries last night, quick bake this morning, served with a spot of vanilla Greek yogurt. Recipe here.

Roasted Baby Belles with Preserved Lemon Vinaigrette

I am in the enviable position of having a friend who doesn’t cook much and has the most amazingly productive lemon tree I have ever seen.  As the happy recipient of many of these lemons, I have taken up making marmalade, lemon curd, candied peels, and most recently, preserved lemons (so easy and so much better than store-bought).

Renee Shepherd got me interested in making tagines a few years back, and the preserved lemons are a key ingredient in many of those recipes.  However, one can only eat so many tagines, so I set out to find other ways to use preserved lemons.  I stumbled upon a Moroccan vinaigrette recipe that is fabulous and is especially good over our roasted mini-bell peppers.  This has become my go-to dish for potlucks and buffets. They are always a hit.

Roasted Baby Belles with Preserved Lemon Vinaigrette
Dressing recipe adapted from Cooking at the Kasbah by Kitty Morse

10-12 servings

You can make the peppers and the dressing up to 8 hours ahead, but don’t dress the peppers until ready to serve.  This is not a marinated dish; you want the contrast of the sweet peppers against the tangy dressing.

Leave the stems on the peppers so folks can just pick them up and pop them into their mouths.

2 pounds  mini bell peppers
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced preserved lemon rind
1½  teaspoons ground cumin
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup fresh lemon juice

1.    Roast peppers: this can be done on a grill or under a broiler.  Spread peppers in single layer directly on a grill or on a baking sheet under a broiler, expose to heat source, and turn as skin begins to blacken and blister.  Place roasted peppers in a paper bag to sweat for 10 minutes.
2.    Peel peppers.  Since the mini bells have tender skins, it is not necessary to peel completely – just remove large blackened pieces of peel.
3.    Place on a serving platter in a single layer.
4.    Make dressing: whisk together remaining ingredients, or put in a jar and shake.
5.    Pour over peppers and serve at room temperature.

Super Bowl XLV ☞ Be the host with the most this Sunday!

You have to love Super Bowl Sunday. Team rivalry, half-time entertainment, good company to watch the game with, and excellent food! Here are some recipes that are sure to kick off your day of sports with a bang. Click on any of the titles or pictures to take you directly to the recipe page on our website.


Pork Spareribs with Rum Barbecue Sauce: No matter what, ribs will always be a hit at parties because they are fun, require no silver-ware, and taste down-right amazing.


Savory Roasted Prime Rib : Perfect for those meat lovers out there. A nice smoky and savory flavor. This dish also makes great sandwiches and leftovers.


Potato Salad is always a hit whether you are at home or tailgating before a game. We have two recipes for you. Old-Fashioned Potato Salad is a traditional potato salad like grandma used to make.  Picnic Perfect Potato Salad with Arugula Pesto puts a twist on the old and brings in some of the new.

Old-Fashioned Potato Salad

Picnic Perfect Potato Salad with Arugula Pesto


Chicken and White Bean Chili: Simply put, this dish is a crowd pleaser. A great contrast to the traditional chilis out there. This recipe has a creamy texture and a slightly smoky flavor.


Nectarine and Arugula Salad: Sweet nectarines work wonderfully with sharp arugula (baby spinach or mixed greens can be substituted for arugula).


Cowboy Caviar is a fancy name for a great dip loaded with Indiana corn, whole black beans and avocado.  It will disappear quickly, so make plenty.


Barbecued Chicken, Onion and Apple Pizza is exotic and like no other pizza, but still satisfies that pizza craving. Why call for delivery when you can have it this good?


Dijon Crusted Chicken Wings can be served at room temperature, making them a great take-along dish.  These are again and again a favorite of Foodie Kitchen followers.


Congo Bars are the perfect party sweet treat. Melt in your mouth goodness, easy to make, yet a bit unexpected – not quite a brownie, not quite a cookie.


No matter who you are rooting for, or what your tastes, you are sure to find a recipe that strikes your fancy on Can’t find what you are looking for? Write to us, we”ll help.

November Recipe Contest Winner Announced!

This winning recipe for Butternut Oyster Stew was entered by DuWayne Heupel.  Being a fan of both butternut squash and oysters, I found this recipe to be creative and delicious.  Squash is plentiful right now and stews are so comforting in cooler weather.

Be sure to check out our next Contest here.  Enter!  You could be a winner!

Find these recipes, hundreds more, and great tools on

Mash Those Potatoes!

There are multiple steps in creating a Thanksgiving feast.  (See my blog on pulling it all together for detailed tips on timing and preparation).

For those of you who believe no Thanksgiving dinner is complete without mashed potatoes, this tool is for you.  Not only is it a great conversation piece, it gets the job done in half the time as a regular masher.  One of the kids may actually volunteer to mash the potatoes just for the fun of using the Simply Mash Potato Masher.  In the spirit of products with multi-use capabilities, it works for yams and avocados as well.

And don’t forget to check out my recipe for Old Fashioned Mashed Potatoes.

September Recipe Contest Winner Announced!

The September recipe contest theme was “Put an Egg on It”.  This category, suggested by one of my readers, was an opportunity to think of eggs beyond breakfast.  Michael Cohen won for his innovative recipe, Thai Bird’s Nest with Poached Eggs.  Give it a try for a delicious and unique way to enjoy poached eggs.

Be sure to check out our next Contest here.  Enter!  You could be a winner!

Find these recipes, hundreds more, and great tools on

Eat Some Vegetables! Better Yet, Grow Some!

The story in today’s New York Times about Americans not eating enough vegetables really got to me.  I had just harvested from my small garden, was happy with my beautiful bounty (pictured above),  thinking about what I would make for dinner tonight.  I harvest this much at least every other day, in September, and this doesn’t include the other basket of hot peppers and herbs that I collected. Anyone with a little outdoor space that gets sunlight can throw some seeds in the dirt and grow their own foods, even in a few pots on a balcony.  What are you waiting for?  The results are so rewarding!

Seed Source: Renee’s Garden

Varieties pictured: Spanish Padrons (Tapas Peppers), Baby Belle Peppers, Pole Beans, Sungold Tomatoes and Carmello Tomatoes

What to do with Spanish Padrons: recipe

Tea Smoked Chicken Wings with a Honey Glaze

I made these last night and served with Thai-Style Slaw and some steamed brown jasmine rice.  Incredibly tasty and not-too-heavy meal!

Make these for a party and I guarantee they will be the first things to disappear.  Everyone, from kids to fussy old-timers, loves these scrumptious wings.

For the marinade:
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 medium onion
1/4 cup rice vinegar
3 tablespoons honey
1 thick chunk of ginger, 1 inch long
4 large cloves garlic
2 tablespoons sesame oil

24 chicken wings

For the smoking mixture:
1/2 cup rice
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup loose black tea, such as Lapsang Souchong or pekoe
6 whole cloves
3 star anise pods
1 tablespoon orange zest

For finishing:
2/3 cup chopped scallions
1 tablespoon sesame seeds

Special Equipment:
Smoker, such as Brinkman electric smoker

1.  Blend the marinade ingredients in a food processor or blender.
2.  Place wings in zippered bag or bowl and pour marinade over. Toss to coat wings, then refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
3.  Preheat smoker.  In a bowl, mix all smoking mixture ingredients together.
4.  From double layers of heavy-duty aluminum foil, make a tray small enough to fit on heat source in smoker.  Put 1/2 the smoking mixture in tray. (Do not use a water bath for this smoking.) Place tray directly on heat source.
5.  Place wings on oiled rack and place rack on lowest level in smoker.
6.  After 30 minutes, remove tray and pour in the remaining smoking mixture.  Return to smoker.
7.  Smoke for 30 minutes more or until done.
8.  Remove to serving platter and sprinkle with scallions and sesame seeds.

Music in the kitchen – Jason Vieaux

Find this recipe, and hundreds more, at

Thai Style Slaw

Crunchy cabbage, refreshing lime, dressed up with mint, basil and cilantro – a heavenly salad! This is a favorite in our house, where the young ones will only eat cabbage when prepared in this fashion. You can have it as a side with a meal, as a starter, or use it as a base to top with roasted chicken, grilled shrimp or grilled, thinly sliced top sirloin. The portions here feed 4 as a side, 2 for a main dish salad.

3 tablespoons lime juice
1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon nam pla (fish sauce)
4 cups finely shredded Napa cabbage or tender green cabbage
1/2 cup very thinly sliced red onion
2 carrots, peeled and finely julienned
2 tablespoons chopped mint leaves
1 tablespoon chopped basil leaves
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

1.  In a non-reactive bowl, mix lime juice, oil, sugar and nam pla.  Stir until sugar is dissolved.
2.  Add the vegetables and herbs and toss to coat.  Let rest 1/2 hour before serving to allow flavors to meld.

Find this recipe, and hundreds more, at