Category Archives: good food

Go To Recipes

Hello friends! I hope your Memorial weekend is going great! On Friday I posted about my favorite blogs and today I wanted to share some go to recipes from some of these bloggers. I love to cook and get friends together for a meal. A few years back B and I actually competed with friends in a local Iron Chef competition. What a blast that was!

We have a pretty small house but a huge yard so get togethers generally happen in the warmer months. I have always loved the idea of a monthly get together of good friends and food. I read an article last summer on this company in TX called Neighbor’s Table. The concept of something so simple bringing people together inspired me to start having potlucks last summer. Right now we are limiting ourselves to one other couple who are practicing social distancing as we are.

**A caveat, all photos are from the bloggers sites. I am a newb at photography so would prefer to post their glorious photos instead.

Its seems my go to appetizer consists of bread + fruit/veggie + cheese + herb generally speaking. Yummy bites to nosh on for me sometimes are a great light dinner during the warmer months.

I found the recipe for Cranberry Brie bites on a blog that no longer exists. [Although I am friends with her on Facebook – internet for the win!]. I brought these for a Friendsgiving a few years ago and totally need to make these more often! I love me some sweet and savory and cheese so these were right up my alley!

cranberry brie bites

I also brought these Gruyere, Mushroom & Caramelized onion bites to the same Friendsgiving [I was in charge of the appetizers].

Gruyere Mushroom & Caramelized Onion Bites

You can never go wrong with bruschetta. In fact often this is a summer dinner treat for me. I always add mozzarella but burrata melts even better so the next time I make this I will be trying with that!


I have been getting in to bread baking lately too! I have been wanting to bake bread for a while and ordered the book The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day .I made their basic bread recipe and it turned out well, lighter in color than I would like but that’s OK. At the time I didn’t have a Dutch Oven which I have since corrected [I bought the 4.5 quart in Caribbean blue].

I found this sourdough starter and bread recipe from Half Baked Harvest that I have been making quite a bit. Fresh baked bread straight from the oven has been wonderful! Bread baking has become such a thing right now it’s been hard to get yeast and flour. I ordered two pounds of yeast online and a friend bought 20 pounds of flour at the store, we shared with each other and now we each are the proud owners of an air tight food grade 5 gallon bucket full of flour!

Also from Halfbaked Harvest is this Swirled Garlic Herb Bread. I made a second loaf Friday night [my actual photo on the right].

If you have discovered from my camping essentials post yesterday we love a good panini! This honey apple cheddar bacon panini is super yummy! Just the right amount of sweet and savory for my pallet. I just made this recently but would totally bring all the ingredients camping [we always pre-cook bacon & sausage and just reheat].


I currently have beets growing in my veggie garden and I can’t wait to harvest them for this beet, goat cheese & avocado sammy. I have even made this as a salad.

beet goat cheese avocado

Generalyl speaking I do not like nuts in anything but I mae an exception for this Waldorf chicken salad. I have eaten this on lettuce and on bread.

waldorf chicken salad

The first time I made the swirled garlic herb bread I served it with this Curried Butternut Squash Soup by Minimalist Baker. Curry is one of those flavors that you either like or you don’t but this soup is light on the curry flavor. So good and so right!

Curried Butternut Squash Soup
Photo Credit


I am not a beef chili fan but another soup I have made a few times is Martha Stewart’s white bean chicken chili. Just the right amount of heat and sooo good on a cold day with some amazing sourdough bread!

white bean chicken chili

We love us some pizza around here and purchased a wood pellet pizza oven a couple years back [link is to similar – they don’t sell ours anymore]. We even took it camping. A friend of B who has a wood fired pizza oven in his kitchen got him the book American Pie which has been an interesting read. People really take their pizza seriously! I made their Margherita pizza dough Thursday night and a variation of this pizza recipe, again from Halfbaked Harvest – see a trend here? We had pesto as our sauce base, artichoke, Kalamata olives, salami, pine nuts, sun dried tomatoes, mushroom and burrata cheese melted on top.


I love Mediterranean food and have both of Debbi Mazar and husband Gabrielle Corcos cookbooks Super Tuscan & Extra Virgin. Everything I have made from their cookbook is amazing. I especially love the paella!

Butternut squash is something I planted in the garden this year and I really love it for cooking with! I have tried this butternut squash ravioli recipe and I had issues with the dough. I will try it again and possibly make this recipe next.


I’m a sucker for a good salad and I love me some sweet and savory mixed together! This Strawberry Burrata Quinoa Salad with Pistachios is soooo goood! I make it all the time and generally speaking have all of the ingredients at home or in my garden. This was the first time I ate burrata cheese and oh man! Love!


Another go to salad recipe that is amazing [trust me] is Watermelon Basil & Feta with Spiced Pumpkin Seeds. I actually got this recipe from a friend in the hospitality business. I never remember how to make it so found this one to print out.

Another quinoa recipe I recently made was quinoa burgers with sweet potato fries and beer caramelized onions. I substituted Cavatica Stout from Fort George Brewing for the lighter lager beer in her recipe.


We really enjoy salmon and I recently found a recipe for tuna cakes but substituted smoked salmon instead. Trust me when I say a generous amount of peanut oil is your friend when you cook these. Great way to prevent everything from sticking to the pan!

tuna cakes

This is a quick dinner recipe I found when I was doing the Whole 30. B loves it and we call it by its nickname, Crack. Egg Roll in a Bowl is made with ground pork but we always make it with ground turkey. Recently all we had was purple cabbage, I would NOT recommend. It tastes great but the color is off putting.


I’ve been crazving some sweets lately and when a friend posted this Earl Grey Blackberry Scone with Lemon Glaze recipe on FB I knew I needed to try it! I didn’t have blackberries on hand but I did have raspberries. We had these Friday morning with eggs and sausage. I have given a few away to friends [a gal who buys are chicken eggs and a neighbor B had social distancing driveway beers with last night].
Photo Credit

I am not vegan but I have had some amazing vegan food. The first time I tried Jackfruit was from this little vegan food truck at one of our favorite breweries when we head up north to Bellingham. If you are ever in the area you must get food from Sage Against the Machine. They make amazing BBQ Jackfruit. Anyway, somehow I came across this BBQ pulled “pork” jackfruit taco recipe which I have made camping. Recently B found grilled corn in a can [shall see how tasty that can be] and I have Jackfruit on hand so will likely be making this again soon.


Another yummy taco I have made a couple times are these sweet corn & jicama tacos with garlic lime mayo. The last time I made them I added chicken. The dressing is to die for!

corn and jicama tacos

B and I love a good cocktail. We recently set up a bar on a dresser we have in our kitchen that houses napkins, kitchen towels, aprons, the Dutch oven and some serving pieces. My mom got us some great round tumblers for Christmas that sit right on the bar ready to serve us up!

Generally my go to cocktail is a dirty vodka martini. You just really can’t go wrong when you order one.

dirty martini

Now that it’s warmer I have been drinking vodka soda with lime more often.

vodka soda

I went to a party years ago and had some really good jalapeno margaritas and recently went searching for a recipe. I generally don’t care for margarita’s but discovered it’s because of the really sweet mixer most places use. This jalapeno margarita recipe is fresh lime & orange juice, agave nectar, tequila & jalapeno. I did not do the salt rim.

Margarita Jalapeno

Another go to cocktail for us is an Old Fashioned. We prefer Redemption Whiskey but Bulleit Bourbon is no slouch! Over the last year we have refined our own recipe so I have noted it below.

  • two ice cubes
  • double shot whiskey or bourbon of your choice
  • half shot simple syrup [we have been purchasing Barsmith instead of making]
  • 3 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 3 dashes orange bitters
  • maraschino cherry
  • orange twist

Old Fashioned

There are some other cocktails and recipies I would like to explore. I hope I have made you hungry enough to try some of these! What is your favorite recipe? Share in the comments!

Cozy Yummy Meal

Happy Monday friends! The weekend was full of me battling ivy [and winning!]. I am slowly getting rid of the ivy that is creeping along the front bed of our property. Almost all of the veggie seeds I planted are coming up. Still waiting on the zucchini. The grass seed I planted a couple weeks ago is making its appearance too! Got some raspberry plants from my mom too.

Last night I made a very satisfying and yummy but simple meal. Curried butternut squash soup and swirled garlic herb bread.

Curried Butternut Squash Soup


Swirled Garlic Herb Bread

After a day of working in the yard this was a welcome meal!

Street Corn & Jicama Tacos with Lime Mayo

Hello and happy Thursday!

I don’t know about you but all this sheltering in place has really brought out my domestic side. We have been doing a LOT of cooking up in here! In fact, in the last five weeks we have ordered take away exactly once. That is strange for us as we generally eat out a couple times a week and boy are we missing our favorite local Italian place!

So let’s get to it. The recipe couldn’t be easier to follow. I always make a recipe exactly the first time and then tweak it. B usually tweaks everything. He’s a “from the hip” sort of cook and that is NOT a bad thing. I have enjoyed all of this experiments.

But I digress…..


[photo source]

I’m posting her photo because it is MUCH better than mine [I’m an infant at this DSLR thing].

Not exactly sure how I came across Jessica’s blog but I am SO glad I did! I had made this recipe last summer and was really craving it. This time I added chicken seasoned with pepper, salt, paprika & chipotle. We did not have fresh corn on hand so we used canned and “grilled” it on the stove. The flavor turned out pretty nice. Today for lunch B used the left over mix with fish in a quesadilla with purple cabbage.


Salmon Cakes

I came across this tuna cake recipe the other day by Emily Bites. All of her recipes include weight watchers values if you are following that plan. We had all of the ingredients at home but tuna wasn’t sounding like something I wanted. We had some smoked salmon so thought I would try it with that.


They turned out amazing! I’m sure with tuna it would be good but the flavor of the smoked salmon combined with the panko and parmesan cheese was perfect! We served them with roasted brussels sprouts and sweet potato fries.

Salmon Cakes

One thing I did notice was how wet the patty’s were after I and coated them with the panko/parm mixture. We ended up with seven patties instead of nine even though I used a 1/4 measuring cup to make them per the instructions. As they sat while the cooking oil was getting up to temp [see below] they firmed up so I felt better and that is something to keep in mind.

One caveat to her instructions. She says to use 1 tablespoon of olive oil to cook your cakes in. In the past that has just not worked for me. My patties end up sticking to the pan and crumbling and frustrating the heck out of me. I used a generous amount of peanut oil [probably 1/4 deep in a large pan that would hold all seven patties at once] and let the oil get really hot in the pan. Peanut oil has a higher cooking temp and is good for this sort of thing. Better than canola for sure!

Once the oil is really hot [flick some water on the surface from your hand – if it sizzles its ready] and then place your patties. Let them cook for a while and get browned on one side then flip to finish.

The below WW values are from her recipe with tuna. Tuna and salmon are rated the same points wise but I did use full fat mayo when I made it. I generally don’t by lite or diet items.

Blue: 2, Purple: 2, Green: 3

Yummy Meals – Tuscan Chicken

A few months back I did the Whole 30 for the second time. A friend turned me on to a blog called 40 Aprons. OMG! I have made a bunch of her recipes now and considering a lot are based on a W30 you DO NOT feel like you are “on a diet” when you are eating her recipes. B is out and about today with some Geocaching lackeys [they work at Geocaching HQ] and I stayed home to get some things done. Tonight I made Creamy Tuscan Chicken. It was so good! I have found many recipes on her blog that are satisfying and flavorful and don’t make me think that I am “eating healthy”. Bonus, B loves them as much as I do. Go check out her blog and make one of her recipes. I dare you!