Random header image... Refresh for more!

Posts from — November 2010


Picture by Marissa, read the info at the bottom of the post!

Not that kind of housekeeping! I’m not Martha Stewart, I don’t give a darn how you fold your sheets and I certainly hope you do NOT iron them! No, I’m talking about some minor “blog housekeeping” – Firstly, thank you to each and every one of you who have already commented in the last 24 hours, trying to help me reach my goal of 1027 comments by December 31, 2010. We are already up to 994 – fabulous! And somehow, by some wonderful miracle, the comments actually outweighed the blog spam today!

Secondly, for those of you who may have missed it or who live out of the Phoenix area, here is THE LINK to the S’Mores Party clip from yesterday’s Valley Dish. Great fun, too bad we were missing Connor, although I’m sure he was staying warm up in beautiful Flagstaff that Friday night. OK, housekeeping finished – on to today’s recipe.

[

November 30, 2010   13 Comments

goals are good

Everyone should set goals for themselves. Most people do so at the beginning of a new year. Today I am setting a goal for my blog. It is a short-term goal that is to be accomplished by the end of this year, and I need YOUR help to achieve it!

[

November 29, 2010   16 Comments

2nd appetizer from BFCP

Here is the second recipe promised from the Black Friday Cocktail Party. It would make a great addition to any Christmas buffet too, just play up the red and green a little more, and it’ll fit right in. Enjoy!

[

November 28, 2010   4 Comments


There were about 25 lovely ladies at my BFCP last night, none of whom actually went shopping earlier in the day. A few did admit to cyber-shopping, but no one went near the malls… smart friends, have I!  

Below is the light menu I served and while typing it up I realized that it is basically a vegetarian menu, even though none of the attendees are vegetarians. You can get away with this when it’s an all-girls group, but don’t try it when men are involved!

I say “basically vegetarian” because my shooters used chicken stock, but one can easily substitute vegetable broth. And luckily, everyone loves cheese, because just about every recipe has it!

The first three dishes have already been posted here and you can access them by just clicking on the desired recipe name. The final two are from a wonderful cookbook called The Big Book of Appetizers by  Meredith Deeds and Carla Snyder. Meredith taught classes last week at Les Gourmettes Cooking School and these were two of the delicious recipes she demonstrated. Not only was the food great, but Meredith was a wonderful and entertaining teacher. I highly recommend the book, check it out on Amazon by clicking on the title above. With Meredith’s permission, I am posting the recipe for the tart today and the dip will be up tomorrow. Bonus: There is a special “Black” playlist to go along with the menu at the bottom of this post.

Black Friday Cocktail Party Menu

Hot Feta and Tomato Spread with Pita Chips
Edamame Hummus with
Potato, Parsnip, Pear, and Parmesan Shooters
Blue Cheese Marinated Mushrooms
Rustic Goat Cheese Tart with Caramelized Balsamic Onions
Feta Cheese, Roasted Red Pepper, and Pine Nut Dip

Splits of Freixenet
Red and White Wine
Martinelli’s Sparkling Cider

[

November 27, 2010   1 Comment

Black Friday Party

Who in the world would have a party the day after Thanksgiving, coming off of a cooking marathon? Me! Crazy, I know, but I am still really looking forward to seeing my friends at an impromptu get-together before the holiday rush. In fact, it’s sort of a kick-off to the madness of the Holiday Season, called a Black Friday Cocktail Party.

I’m making about half dozen appetizers and serving darling little splits of Freixenet Cordon Negro; the brut champagne in the little black bottles. Here is one of the dishes we’ll be slurping on, I’ll post more recipes and pictures tomorrow and for a few days to come. All will be more than appropriate for your own holiday party or to bring along to the ones you’ll be attending.

[

November 26, 2010   2 Comments

Happy Thanksgiving!

“He who can give thanks for little will always find he has enough”~ Unknown

[

November 25, 2010   5 Comments

Pumpkin Pie … Not!

Thanksgiving is tomorrow!!! Don’t know that I can help you now if you haven’t gotten busy yet, but just in case, I give you – Complete Thanksgiving Planning Guide and Timeline.

OK, so I have caved and I have made the dough for the potato rolls. How can I not, after The Audrey Files made them for her family and then raved about them on her blog? I’d feel like a heel if I stood my ground on that one. But I must rebel in some small way, so I am NOT going to make a homemade pumpkin pie this year! Instead I am making a pumpkin bundt cake, so take that, my whining family! But, I even felt a little guilty about that, so I purchased a little pumpkin pie at Trader Joe’s… oh well.

I do not trust a bundt cake to come out of the bundt pan cleanly. So I never, and I mean never, use Pam to grease it. I always melt plenty of butter and brush it on every visible interior surface and then dust the pan with flour. That usually does the trick, but not every time, sometimes it just sticks in one little spot, just to spite me.

[

November 24, 2010   7 Comments

new item alert #2

Turkey-Day is only 2 days away!!! Complete Thanksgiving Planning Guide and Timeline. Better get there now!

I’ve known this fact for about a year now, bloggers are very nice and supportive people! Look at this sweet post from a fellow blogger and often, nice comment sender, Audrey Larsen, of The Audrey Files. She is my new BFF – so sorry Jen and Peggy and Anne!

Wanna know something that makes my day (in addition to having a new BFF)? Finding a cool new item at Trader Joe’s, that’s what! While standing in the dried fruit/nut aisle I was scanning for dried cranberries. Not that I really need another bag, I’m guessing that I have at least a half dozen partial bags of dried cranberries tucked behind various other partial bags of nuts and fruits and chocolates in one of my two extra freezers, but I am too busy/lazy to dig for one. That is really a whole other story and could be a post on its own! Anyhow, as I stood there scanning, I saw, the new item – dried pomegranate seeds.

Awesome! I was so excited to try them, I had to control the urge to open the package right there and then. The very second I was in the car, I ripped into it. They are tasty, and according to the package they are a “good source of fiber” too. There you go, run out and snag a couple of bags so that it becomes such a popular item, there is no way TJ’s would even consider discontinuing them. Even though I am enjoying eating them straight from the bag, I decided to create a Thanksgiving recipe using them and share it with you… hey, it’s just how I roll.

[

November 23, 2010   1 Comment

black friday for foodies

Turkey Day is only 3 days away!!! Complete Thanksgiving Planning Guide and Timeline.

If you love shopping, then you probably love Black Friday. As for me, absolutely NO WAY! I never venture out on that day or any Saturday or Sunday between now and December 24th! But for those of you diehards, I give you some Foodie Deals I found while searching the web for the upcoming ads. The things I do for you… it’s only Monday, so keep your heart rate down and start planning ahead!

As expected, many of these are “limited quantity” doorbuster deals so please rely on the fine print and exact details in each specific ad in Thursday’s newspaper or online ads. None of the information is guaranteed – remember, I found all this on the internet! But maybe it will help give you a helpful heads-up before you head out to the malls. Have fun, I’ll be praying for you.

[

November 22, 2010   3 Comments

drama free holiday

Turkey-Day is only 4days away!!! Complete Thanksgiving Planning Guide and Timeline.

Honestly, our Thanksgivings are drama-free. But we’ve all heard those stories of families that just let it fly on that special day. When you have a small group, let’s say just four people for dinner, those problems probably won’t arise.  Another thing that is different about Thanksgiving without the crowd is the “turkey-situation”. Unless everyone is a huge fan of leftovers, a big turkey may seem like too much, so instead, how about opting for turkey breast?  It’s most everyone’s favorite part of the bird anyhow, and takes much less time to roast. Or, maybe you have just a few too many people for one turkey and don’t have the room to roast another. The addition of a breast or two is the answer!

I am going to skip my usual two birds and do just that, one bird and 1 extra breast half for our crew this year. My dilemma was how do I show you how to do the breast without having to do one ahead of time for this post? I worked it out by stuffing and roasting a boneless chicken breast instead.

To be clear, the recipe is for turkey breasts, the photos are of chicken breasts. Follow the recipe and you’ll be fine.

[

November 21, 2010   1 Comment