abeautifulmosaic

Penne with butternut squash, sausage and sage

This meal is perfect for the week of Thanksgiving since many have these ingredients on the Thanksgiving shopping list.  The recipe calls for sage, something I always buy the last week of November, and butternut squash, an autumnal must.  This quick and easy meal is perfect on that busy week leading up to Thanksgiving as you []

Continue Reading

Chicken Cassoulet

 The recent onslaught of hurricanes and tropical storms have left its mark all along the Gulf Coast and Eastern seaboard.  Dark skies and heavy rains make for a perfect day for a cassoulet, a French stew made of white beans, vegetables, and meat.  Just add a salad and some crusty bread, and you have yourself the []

Continue Reading

Girl Scout cookies year round

Even before my daughter became a Brownie, I would stalk local grocery stores and malls for girls sporting bemedaled green sashes sitting behind a table piled high with those familiar colorful boxes.  I loved them all – Shortbread, Thin Mints, Tagalongs and of course, my particular favorite, Samoas (which is also known as Caramel De-lites).  Alas, these []

Continue Reading

Striped Bass and Mushroom Risotto

It was been raining steadily all day and I’ve been in the mood for risotto.  Done properly, risotto can be stick-to-your-ribs good and perfect for a dreary day like today.  I came across this recipe in the RSVP restaurant recipe section of the November 2008 Bon Appétit (one of my favorite features in the magazine).  []

Continue Reading

Throwing a tea party – American Girl style

My daughter recently turned eight, the minimum age recommended for American Girl dolls. It’s amazing, really, since before this age, my daughter wouldn’t give these dolls the time of day, and since these dolls are about $90 a pop, I wasn’t about to push it.  Just as she approached her birthday, however, her interest increased exponentially with every over-sized []

Continue Reading

Victory Brownies

  The campaign field office has been cleaned out, the lawn signs have been taken down, and I’ve had a few days to reflect on the extraordinary occurrences of the past week.  I suppose when you dive head first into a cause that you believe in with your entire being, the effects of its successes are magnified.  The surfeit []

Continue Reading

February Daring Bakers Challenge: Flourless Chocolate Cake

  The February 2009 challenge is hosted by Wendy of WMPE’s blog and Dharm of Dad ~ Baker & Chef.  We have chosen a Chocolate Valentino cake by Chef Wan; a Vanilla Ice Cream recipe from Dharm and a Vanilla Ice Cream recipe from Wendy as the challenge.   I thought last month’s challenge was simple, []

Continue Reading

Guacamole with blue cheese and pomegranate

My husband and I had a wonderful dinner at Xochitl on the Day of the Dead after a hard day of getting out the vote two weeks ago.  We ordered from the special Day of the Dead menu, but had to try the guacamole they prepare at the table.  We settled on guacamole with blue cheese and []

Continue Reading

October Daring Bakers Challenge: Pizza!

This month’s Daring Bakers Challenge was a pleasure to complete and eat – pizza is always welcome in our house.  Having to complete two kinds of pizza, I decided to make a family favorite, pesto and shrimp, and something new for me, a gorgonzola and grape pizza.  As I have mentioned before, I have been intensely involved []

Continue Reading

Bakers Challenge for January: Tuiles

  This month’s challenge is brought to us by Karen of Bake My Day and Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte aka Kochtopf. They have chosen Tuiles from The Chocolate Book by Angélique Schmeink and Nougatine and Chocolate Tuiles from Michel Roux.  My daughter turned 8 this month, and I decided to make tuiles tiaras, perfect []

Continue Reading

Fig Season Part III: Fig, arugula and prosciutto pizza

This is the last in my three part series on figs, and I saved the best for last.  I modified this from a recipe I found in the September issue of Bon Appetit,which featured recipes from famous and not so famous restaurants.  This recipe comes from Fahrenheit in Cleveland, although I did alter this recipe []

Continue Reading

August’s Daring Bakers Challenge: Chocolate Éclairs

This month’s Daring Bakers Challenge was hosted by MeetaK and Tony and I was excited to discover they had chosen chocolate éclairs.  Custards and pastry creams are a weakness of mine, and I still giggle when I recall a Christmas over a decade ago when I attempted a croquembouche as my pièce de résistance.  Suffice it []

Continue Reading