In this blog, I share my favorite food tips, tricks, and simple recipes. I have been cooking for most of my life, and over the last 20 years, I have developed a simple philosophy of smarter cooking built upon smart yet straightforward recipes, featuring fresh ingredients and global flavors cooked in an efficient yet straightforward manner. In every blog post, I will share tips, tricks and maybe a bit of food history – centered around the idea of an easy and ultimately tasty recipe.
Memorial Day is often the first big barbeque of the season! Read this post for tips on preparing for a stress-free, upscale barbeque. Included are homemade barbeque sauce recipes along with great grilling recipes, fresh salad recipes and a dessert that will have your guests asking for more!
Need some easy & delicious snack ideas? Wait until you try my yummy homemade soft pretzel recipes! They bake warm, tender, and just the way you love them. I am also sharing recipes for savory beer & cheese dip and German-style mustard.
For decades, the simple BLT has held an iconic spot on American diner menus. Let me show you how to elevate your Perfect BLT sandwich to new flavor heights with modern twists. BLTs are quick, easy to make, and offer unlimited options for your family’s dining pleasure.
When you have a well-stocked pantry, you can save time and money. Let me share some of my best pantry essentials tips & tricks, from maximizing your space to choosing essential ingredients. You will always have staples ready whenever you are ready to prepare a delicious meal!
Pasta is represented in just about all international cuisines. Let me show you how inexpensive & easy it is to make fresh homemade pasta from scratch! Use your noodles to make some of my best pasta-forward recipes. When it comes to yummy pasta dishes, it will be hard for your family to resist!
For ultimately tender and flavorful meat, brining is an excellent choice. The simple process of soaking it in salt water, herbs & citrus makes the toughest cuts fork-tender and infuses them with a phenomenal taste that your family will enjoy. Let me show you how easy it is to brine beef brisket to create succulent corned beef!
If you love chocolate desserts, wait until you discover how well it pairs in savory dishes! Try my easy recipes that combine cocoa with zesty Mexican-inspired spices to create mouth-watering barbecue rubs or savory chili. Chocolate adds subtle creamy, smoky nuances that send your taste buds into overdrive. Give into your chocolate cravings and try my elegant & tasty chocolate martini, too!
Instead of ordering take-out for your next family pizza night, why not create a yummy pizza from scratch? From making your own pizza dough to preparing a flavorful sauce, you will be amazed at how easy pizza recipes can be! Here are some of my favorite tips & tricks for the ultimate homemade pizza.
One of the keys to working efficiently in the kitchen is to have everything set up before preparing a recipe. The French call it mise en place, meaning everything in its place. Here are my best tips & tricks to help you save time.
The right usage of herbs & spices makes a big difference in your finished dishes. Try some of my delicious spice-forward recipes and discover how tasty seasoning blends can be! International recipes will develop your palate for tasty herbs & spices in all your cooking.
For centuries, vinegar has been an indispensable ingredient for home cooks. It preserves, pickles, and lends tangy flavor to sauces and dressings. Discover how easy it is to create herb-flavored vinegars at home to zest up many of your favorite recipes!
As an aficionado of vintage cookbooks, I discovered that braising has been a popular method of cooking for a long time. When I researched the technique, the earliest references I could find were from 18th century France. French cooks called the process of using dry and wet heat to prepare meat “braiser,” which morphed into our English word braising.
The healthiest diet adheres to some sensible and straightforward guidelines: Eat more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and eat less meat. These recipes will help you happily comply through breakfast, lunch, and dinner. On any given day, choose any of these dishes, making sure to eat a variety of ingredients and strike a balance between heavier and lighter. For more healthy eating tips, see these guidelines for a balanced diet.
Ask a kitchen pro what the secret is to creating dishes wrapped in full flavor and what you’ll hear is “go low and slow.” This is a secret the folks at Rival have known for decades, and it was the inspiration for today’s modern Crock Pot.
The winter holidays season is here, and it is time to warm up the oven. Baking goodies is a cherished holiday tradition for most families. I have compiled some of my best baking tips & tricks to help make your work easier and more efficient. Whether you are a novice or a seasoned baker, these helpful hints offer sweet success to everything you bake for family and friends!
A holiday table would not be the same without at least one scrumptious pie for dessert. Whenever I smell warm spices associated with fall, my mind goes back to my grandmother’s kitchen and her tasty pies fresh from the oven. Our family did not always have the traditional pumpkin pie for dessert. Often, Grandma surprised us with delectable varieties like walnut, Dutch apple, and gooseberry pies.
Thanksgiving is a holiday centered around the meal. Making a perfect meal is a lot of pressure on home cooks. It takes a lot of planning and prep work to cook a perfect Thanksgiving buffet. Without proper planning and preparation, it is very easy to become overwhelmed.
Are you running short on easy and quick dinner ideas? Why not serve up a plate of tasty pasta. Since October is National Pasta Month, I have gathered some of my best Pasta meals that are both simple to prepare and fairly budget friendly. With a modest investment, you can cook an easy, fresh and healthy dinner for your family in under 45 minutes.
National Vegetarian Month kicks off on October 1st. Although you might not be ready or willing for that matter, to go a 100% vegetarian, it is easy to dedicate one meal per week to be mostly vegetarian (I like to call it Meat On the Side or Vegetable First).
Breakfast is one of the most important meals of the day. It need not be a challenge to make healthy, easy and fresh meals for your family. Follow my helpful tips, tricks, and recipes for an easy breakfast.
Are you dreading packing your kids’ lunches for school? It doesn’t have to be difficult, follow our tips & tricks in this post and you can have a healthy & fresh lunch for your kids every day, with minimal effort.
Do you take time each day as a family to dine, catch up and share the highlights of your day? If not you are missing out on a golden opportunity to teach your child lifelong lessons. Learn how the family meal instills the importance of family and fresh food. Cooking a fresh meal need not be difficult, try one of my suggested family-friendly meals.
If you are a fan of catfish, you probably enjoy the traditional Southern style that is breaded and deep-fried in a cast iron skillet. You and your family will be pleasantly surprised with other ways you can prepare this flavorful fish. The aromatic spices pair well with the delicate catfish fillets.
One of the beautiful things about late summer is enjoying the bountiful peach harvest. No wonder August is crowned as National Peach Month! Take advantage of your stash of fresh peaches and incorporate them into one of these delicious recipes! Peaches can add pizzazz to any dish, whether it is a savory or sweet. Go beyond peach cobbler and sample some of these suggestions.
Are you ready to fire up the grill for the season? July is National Grilling Month, and a time to try new and exciting grilling recipes. Whether you use charcoal, gas, or electric, grilling food is economical and can be a healthy way of cooking. Consider some of these tempting recipes and invite your friends over for the ultimate barbecue!
There are is a plethora of ways to serve turkey. Think about the everyday recipes that you prepare for your family. Now, how can you change those recipes to incorporate turkey? Wouldn’t a leg or breast with barbeque sauce be amazing on the grill during this summer month? Enjoy National Turkey Lover's Month with some of these tempting turkey recipes.
Have you ever wondered how your favorite barbecue joint smokes their meats perfectly? Try some of these easy, mouthwatering recipes for meats, sauces, and rubs that you can use in your home smoker. Don’t have a smoker? Not a problem, because you can also get the same smoky results on your grill or in your oven. These outstanding flavors may encourage you to smoke meats more often!
Independence Day is the quintessential holiday for the grill. Try this scrumptious menu, featuring Jamaican-style BBQ ribs, savory grilled chicken, and a delicious vegan/vegetarian dish. Pair it with grilled corn salad, tempting desserts, and quick cocktails made by the pitcher. Sit back and enjoy the fireworks!
Caribbean cooking is easy because it uses many common ingredients. You can fire up the barbecue or use a slow cooker inside to do the work. Whatever you pair with your meats, make sure to add some unique fruits for sauces and blends that are out of this world. Is it any wonder that so many people adore Caribbean cuisine? Here are some tempting dishes that can be found on the islands.
When it comes to using dairy products in your recipes, you are only limited by your imagination. Most dishes, whether sweet or savory, feature dairy as a binder or a flavor-enhancing ingredient. No wonder we designated June as National Dairy Month! To celebrate, try this tempting dish that features the freshest dairy ingredients.
Instead of the usual soda, why not make a gallon of iced tea for your next meal? Enjoy tall, frosty glasses of your favorite tea, sweetened or unsweetened. June is National Iced Tea Month, giving you even more reason to try some exciting iced tea recipes for your family.
On June 19, 1965, two months after the Civil War ended, slavery was officially abolished in the American South. Although it began as an African-American tradition, Juneteenth has become a multiethnic celebration. Festivals and Low-land feasts are common. This Juneteenth, treat your family with some authentic soul food dishes.
Since their humble beginnings in post-war America, casseroles have been a family dinner favorite. Home cooks love casseroles because they feature everyday ingredients from the pantry, and are usually prepared in one dish. These iconic dishes can be savory or sweet and are ideal for any meal. Keep reading to discover elevated versions of classic casseroles and exciting international styles.
Do you enjoy the finely-balanced flavors of Asian-inspired cuisines? Discover some culinary delights from the island of Singapore! Their use of meats, fresh seafood, veggies, and flavorful spice blends will tantalize your taste buds. Celebrate National Asian-American Month with some of the food styles that Singaporeans often call the "Cuisine of Love."
Are you searching for ways to help your family eat healthier? Cuisines from the Mediterranean region are loaded with vibrant dishes that are as healthy as they are flavorful. The Mediterranean diet includes a variety of fresh seafood dishes, veggies, pasta, fruit, olive oil, and plenty of aromatic herbs and spices. As this blog will show you, eating healthy does not have to be boring!
It's a time for celebration and the quickest way to joy is through the stomach. Step it, absorb the culture and let's celebrate the Sinhala and Tamil new year together. We will learn how to make classics like Chickpea Sundal, delicious Spicy Indian Roasted Potatoes, and Paal Payasam that will leave you licking your lips and begging for even more.
Soul food is exactly what it sounds like. It's food which feeds the soul. It's food which brings people together and provides a sense of warmth. It has historically been made as a part of a community and used to bring people together. Read on, and learn how to make Gypsy Goulash, Romani Chicken Paprikash With Homemade Dumplings and more!
While you may think Scottish cuisine begins with shortbread cookies and ends with haggis, the truth is that Scotland has plenty of signature dishes to its name. Many of the region's unique dishes make use of one of nature's greatest multitasking crops: the potato; a fair few, including the iconic use of oats. Lastly, Scotland has whisky.
As all nut lovers know, pecans are more than a tasty addition to trail mix. Pecans have been a nutritious staple in the diets of people living in North America for centuries as an ingredient in recipes for both cold and hot meals and desserts. A wide variety of delicious recipes feature this delightful nut in different forms, including toasted, crushed, boiled and mashed.
This blog post includes information on the history of the soybean, which is the basis for many vegan proteins, including tofu and tempeh. They include some brief suggestions for vegan recipes, including a vegan dessert.
A healthy diet can greatly reduce your risk of developing cancer. In this blog, we explore the benefits of a healthy lifestyle and provide some delicious recipes that will be easy to incorporate into your new healthy routine.
Many people only consider potatoes, corned beef, and soda bread when they think of Irish cuisine. While these foods are common, they are only a sampling of what is served today in Irish homes and restaurants. Over centuries, Irish cuisine has evolved with foreign influences and Irish cooks continue to focus on seasonal ingredients and innovative techniques to expand their cuisine.
Wine and other spirits have been used for centuries to amp the flavor of food. Beer can be used in the same way. If you are a beer connoisseur, you are used to a cold beer being served in a frosted mug. However, beer can also be a wonderful ingredient. This quintessential drink imparts tantalizing flavors to meats, soups, and even dessert.
If you enjoy Asian food, then you will love the distinct style perfected in Korea. Cooking Korean food at home does not have to be intimidating when you understand some of the basics. After you learn about the spices and techniques that make Korean cuisine unique, you will be preparing delicacies that will impress your family and friends. Here are some useful things to know about Korean cooking.
With the popularity of veganism on the rise, many families are committing to its diet and lifestyle. Vegans take vegetarianism one step further—they do not consume or use anything to do with animals or animal by-products (such dairy, honey, or eggs). Choosing veganism for your family will not cost as much as you think. There are many inexpensive meals for a large family that are vegan.
Just a few years ago, quinoa was only known to frequent customers of health food stores. The average household in America had never heard of it—let alone pronounce it (kee-NWA). Today, you can find quinoa in just about any grocery store. Home cooks conclude that it is an ideal substitute for potatoes or rice.
When the summer heat is blazing and the swimming pool is calling your name, the last thing you want to do is be stuck with a sink full of dishes. These one dish wonders can be made in a sheet pan in the oven or in one pot on the stove. Your family gets a fast and easy meal, and you get a break with only one pan to wash. These menus will give you more time to have summer fun with your family!
One of the reasons that many of us do not do a lot of cooking is because of time shortage. Many vegetables, such as potatoes and carrots, need a while to get tender enough to eat. No wonder American cooks were fascinated with the pressure cooker. They were once found in almost every home.
Not only is homemade food more cost-effective, but it can actually be even more flavorful and healthier! Restaurants often use shortcuts that add unnecessary calories to food and affect the overall flavor. People often feel that cooking food at home is too time-consuming and challenging, when, in fact, cooking at home and fun, easy and quick! Mashed potatoes are a great example — they're actually super easy, a fantastic way to round out a meal. Did you know that potatoes aren't the only vegetable that's good for mashing? In fact, there are some other incredible, nutrient-packed veggies that make super flavorful mash. Here are some great examples that are perfect if you're on a low-carb diet and still want a delicious side dish.
Today, food is more expensive than it's ever been before. Even a routine trip to the grocery store can easily cost $100 or more, especially if you're cooking for a family! Fortunately, there are dozens of ways to spend less and still produce delicious, flavorful meals the entire family will love. Here's what you need to know.
We all know we should be cutting down on our fat intake, but it can be hard to find good recipe ideas for fat free foods – especially when you’re cooking on a budget! But wanting to cut the fat doesn’t mean you have to drain your bank balance too. Here are four cheap and easy tricks that you can use to transform any recipe into a low-fat feast.
Have you ever wondered why certain tomato sauces just taste so much better than others? Well, generally, it isn't an accident. Not only does good tomato sauce take time, but you have to balance all of the flavor profiles in just the right way. Homemade tomato sauce is one of the few dishes that combine all five: salty, sweet, bitter, tart and umami. To build all of these flavors, the sauce will take most of the day as you craft each, one on top of the other.
With thousands of varieties, tastes and textures made from just a few basic ingredients, bread still amazes, despite its ubiquity. Every world cuisine has at least one national bread, and each entered the culinary world from scratch, just like those you can make at home. After baking your first great loaf, you might never go back to store-bought bread, and after you realize the cost effectiveness, you might not want to.
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