Looking to kick your party up a notch? These Jalapeno poppers have just the right amount of heat to be exciting. With a velvety cheesy filling in a crunchy coating, they are a two-bite wonder. Baking them reduces the prep time and the calories without losing any of the texture and great taste. Serve this easy appetizer and watch your guests go wild. Oh, and plan to make way more than you think you need. They are that good.
This dramatically delicious squash will up the ante on your holiday side dishes. It is both naughty and nice with its sweetness contrasted with a spicy accompanying dip. The acorn squash wedges are very simply oven roasted. It’s what happens next that takes this dish to a whole other level. At the time of serving, it is drizzled with a pomegrante molasses-maple syrup glaze, pomegranate seeds and salty, freshly-toasted pepitas. As if that wasn’t yummy enough, there is a side of kickin’ hot buttery dip. The dish steals center stage! Continue reading
Tourtière is the traditional Christmas Eve dish in French Canada. A lightly spiced, finely ground pork pie enveloped in a flakey melt-in-your-mouth crust, it is the center of the réveillon, a midnight feast served after Christmas mass. The addition of cinnamon, ground cloves and allspice is what makes this savory pie so unique. Served by generations of Québécois families, it is a memorable tasting experience should you be lucky enough to be served a slice. So beloved, it has spread far beyond the borders of the province of Québec where it originated.
I know, I know! One day I’m tempting you with Snickers candy in your banana bread and the next, a salad??? In this season of excess, a salad is just what the doctor ordered! Most college freshmen gain the traditional 15 pounds. Our youngest actually lost almost twice that and asked me to cook him Mediterranean food when he arrived home for Christmas break. What? No cheese steak requests? Taken off guard I looked in the pantry, fridge and freezer to scrounge the making of a meal on the spot. And so was born this recipe, an improvised Niçoise salad of sorts. A sizzling Ahi tuna steak seasoned with capers and Kalamata olives served alongside whole grains and garlicky sautéed spinach. A tasty lunch evoking the Mediterranean and keeping this young man on his healthy journey. The salad just might transport you to a quaint little Greek island, escaping the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. I could escape there myself, right about now! Continue reading
There is nothing like a homemade gift from the kitchen. A banana bread loaf is a great offering as it can be served for breakfast during a busy season of entertaining. It can easily be frozen by the recipient to be enjoyed long after the holiday season, if preferred. Adding your favoirte candy bar chopped up into the batter of your go-to recipe is an indulgent addition befitting the holidays. In this recipe I added chopped Snickers bars as they have peanuts, caramel and chocolate, perfect partners for banana bread! Decadent? You bet! At the end of the post I will share several wrapping ideas for the gifting of banana bread loaves. Continue reading
If you’re trying to be good in between all the excesses of the holiday season this is a quick meal that packs bold flavor from fresh winter fruit and is quick to prepare between all that shopping, baking and decorating. Rich in antioxidants, it will keep you energized as you tick off that endless to-do list. The salsa can be made ahead one day. Continue reading
It would not be Christmas without the famous cookie tower in our family. Throughout the month of December I make and freeze several types of cookies. This is a true labor of love as I am NOT a baker! The anticipation builds as the month progresses. Come Christmas Eve, we host a Réveillon dinner party and the cookie tower is the star of the menu. Constructed by stacking 5 glass cake stands or pedestal dishes in gradated sizes, it becomes a towering display of Christmas sweets. The great thing about the tower is that it can be replenished as the cookies vanish. Continue reading
Love works in mysterious ways. At Christmas 30 years ago, I was going through a painful divorce, far from my family, in a new city I had moved to for the crumbling marriage and would be alone. Just before Christmas, a surprise package arrived. Inside I found a Christmas stocking that had been filled with thoughtful little gifts so mine would not remain empty, and a box of homemade cookies. Continue reading
These cookies are one of my favorites yet I have never encountered them anywhere. I like to make them during the holidays when fresh cranberries are available but they are good anytime.. The red chunks of fruit and the white and dark chocolate drizzle make them attractive on a cookie platter. Their texture is moist with the nice crunch of the toasted almonds. Continue reading
Coconut lovers rejoice! This foolproof 5 ingredient, one bowl, coconut macaroon is fast, easy and simply delicious. Before you can sing through Jingle Bells, you’ll have a tasty batch of these ready! With a nice chewey texture, this cookie is pretty much all coconut with a bit of egg white as a binder. Continue reading