An ode to a legend: Julia Child’s French Bread Recipe

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“Welcome to the Daring Bakers, You are tasked with making the one thing in the world that absolutely terrifies you.”

Yup, that’s how it felt. I finally decide to go and join up with the rest of the blogging world and try this baking stuff out only to find that my three worst fears had been realized on my very first challenge.… Read the rest

Parmesan Garlic Home Fries Recipe and thirteen things I almost *Never* order at a restaurant

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(I’m combining this post with my weekly Thursday Thirteen, if you were just here to see the TT, scroll to the bottom of the post.)

As foodies we are sometimes driven to try the most recent trend in foods. To go after more exotic ingredients and preparation methods. To push our cooking skills and palate’s further than they have ever gone before.… Read the rest

Cat Cora, Cooking From the Hip

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Ladies and gents, I just received my copy of Cat Cora’s Cooking from the hip. I’ve only had a moment to flip through it at this point, but at first glance I get the feeling I’ll be visiting this book often. I’ll let you know more when I’ve had a chance to sit down with the book, a good hot cup of coffee and an hour or two.… Read the rest

Steak and Field Green Salad with Tzatziki and Feta Recipe

Steak and Field Green Salad with Tzatziki and Feta Recipe

As a long time cook I am well aware that nearly nothing I make is a completely original creation. In most cases I probably couldn’t tell you what the original dish that inspired me was. It may have been something I saw in a cookbook, a magazine or on television several years ago. It may have been a dish I used to make when I cooked professionally, well over 20 years ago.… Read the rest

Smoked Salmon Pizza Recipe

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If you’re looking for a meal that is cool, light and refreshing, look no further than this simple pizza. While it may sound odd for me to talk about cool meals in the wanting days of February, our part of the world has seen some pretty strange weather this winter, with temperatures ranging from the sunny and a bit over-warm 80’s, then dropping to a very crisp 24 degrees the very next day.… Read the rest

Beef and Butternut Squash Chili with Beans Recipe (a.k.a Jerry’s Texoma Chili Recipe)

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As much as I appreciate Texas Red Chili, it’s not what I crave when I’m in the mood for a bowl of chili.  The chili I crave is a variation of the chili my father used to make when I was young and even though it’s never won a competition, I’ve never had a single ladle-full come back from one, either.… Read the rest

Spicy Chocolate Peanut Hearts, a sure way to spice up Valentines

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The goal: A supremely simple yet still sweet and unexpected Valentine’s gift for my wife.

The result: Chocolate Peanut Perfection, with a kick from Cajun spices.

I don’t usually “do” Valentine’s Day, at least not in the sense of buying flowers or going out to the best place in town for dinner. (Which would have required reservations made before Thanksgiving.)  I prefer to use my own grubby little mitts to create something that’s mildly surprising and special. … Read the rest

Spicy Salt-Roasted Peanuts Recipe

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Peanuts are a part of daily life, at least around this house.  They’re consumed as butter, as a recipe addition, as a snack, and pretty much any other way I can come up with to use them.  I started working up a recipe for Valentine’s day a little earlier in the week and I knew from minute one that I wanted it to include peanuts, but not just any peanuts, these needed to have a kick.… Read the rest

Roasted Stuffed Acorn Squash Recipe, a Sage Sensation

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A while back my wife and I decided that if we were going to justify storing our cookbook collection, we needed to make at least one recipe from each book every week.It sounded simple enough, and I happily joined her in browsing through Taste of Home magazine’s Prize winning Recipes (spring 2006), the first of the books on our target list, picking three recipes as we went.… Read the rest

Refried Beans (Frijoles Refritos) Recipe

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When I heard that my friend Susan, The Well Seasoned Cook was hosting a roundup of legume recipes because she’d seen that it was National Bean Day that morning on “Your Morning Cuppa”, I was not only honored and flattered, but I knew I just had to be a part of it.  I thought about making several different things, from a 5 bean soup, to several varieties of bean-based salads and even a relish, but in the end, there are really two ways I think of beans most commonly. … Read the rest

Sauteed Spinach and Mushrooms with Feta Recipe

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We are lucky enough to live very close to the school where my wife works, so on most afternoons she just pops home for lunch.  After two months of pretty hefty holiday meals, we’ve both been feeling the need to go a little lighter.   Even with my inherently carnivorous nature, there are times when I do not feel compelled to have a large meal with proteins as the primary ingredient, or in fact to have them present at all. … Read the rest

Valentine Heart Chocolate Chip Pancakes with Blackberry Syrup Recipe

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If you’d like to make something special for that certain someone this Valentine’s Day, why not say I Love you with breakfast in bed?  And if you’re going to do that, why not make sure that the meal you serve is fit for the occasion and make it heart shaped as well?

While Valentine’s Day was certainly part of the inspiration for this dish, the clincher for me was finding a set of silicone pancake molds at the local grocery. … Read the rest

S.O.S. (Sh*t on a Shingle) – A new Milennium Comfort Food Makeover

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It’s time to begin the comfort food makeovers!  I mentioned that I would be doing so this year, and I’m not about to let Y’all down.

I know I can’t be the only one who grew up eating S.O.S., also known as “Creamed Beef on Toast”, or “Sh*t on a Shingle”.  As a kid it was one of my favorite dishes, since it was only made occasionally.… Read the rest