This is one of my go-to recipes for company and we absolutely love it. I use whatever I have on hand and since I don’t eat meat, I either omit the sausage, or I include it for my carnivorous family, get over it and just fish it out… Continue reading Celebrating Mardi Gras: Sausage and Seafood Gumbo
I don’t like buying store bought products that I can recreate at home. The homemade version many times works just as well, or better, than its commercial cousin and eliminates trash. As an example, for the past few years, I have completely replaced store-bought commercial cleaners with a 50/50 solution of water and vinegar. It works great on all kitchen and bathroom surfaces and windows. Plus, it’s anti-bacterial, but works by denaturing, or unravelling, the bacterial proteins so it doesn’t lead to resistant strains of bacteria…
Since I got my all-purpose cleaner covered, I did some research on laundry detergents and tried a couple of different recipes. Continue reading DIY Liquid Laundry Detergent
I remember as a child watching my mother on special occasions preparing homemade mayonnaise and thought her to be the most magical person ever. I mean, who makes homemade mayonnaise? Even though her status as “most magical person ever” temporarily changed during my teenage years to less flattering titles (until I finally came to the realization that I may have not been all that magical myself) she continued to make homemade mayo. That being said, she is quite magical again.
Now that I have joined the ranks of magical moms I decided it was time to defend that title by venturing into the culinary world of permanent emulsions otherwise known as whipping up some mayonnaise. I felt like a superhero when my children dipped their fingers into the velvety goodness I had produced out of (almost) thin air and eagerly asked for more. They were ready to eat it with a spoon, that’s how good it tastes. It’s delicious!!! Continue reading Homemade Mayo – Or, What’s for Dessert?
What sounds better on a freezing winter day than standing outside with an ice cold snow cone in your hand?…. Actually, I can think of a few things, but apparently my children don’t mind. We usually stay clear of typical snow cones because of the large amounts of food coloring and artificial flavors involved. Not much of a treat (if you ask me!) when your tongue ends up glowing in the dark after enjoying a lime flavored snow cone.
Last summer, we came upon a snow cone stand that advertised a selection of natural syrups, which included all of 2 flavors, in addition to an overwhelming variety of “traditional” concoctions. We asked why they didn’t have more natural flavors, because we assumed people would be thrilled at the rare opportunity to indulge in “healthy” snow cones. To our surprise, we learned that, aside from us, nobody even asked to try the pale colored lime or soft pink natural fruit punch. And why would you, if you have mouthwatering flavors such as “Tiger’s Blood” or “Blueberry Blast” as an alternative? Not only do these two turn your mouth into a multicolored wonder, but dye your stomach lining to match… I tend to go on a rant when it comes to food coloring, because I really don’t see any reason why it should find its way into our food, other than the occasional birthday cake (yes, I use food coloring in my fondant and icing, but that’s it!). Anyway, let me try this again:
What sounds better on a freezing winter day, than standing outside with an ice cold snow cone in your hand?…. So when the first snow fell, my children asked me to make syrup for them and since I had a few bags of frozen raspberries in the freezer, I decided to comply: Continue reading Winter’s Bounty: Snow Cone Syrup
I make pancakes almost every weekend, and even though I sometimes try new recipes, I always go back to a very basic one I have used for years now – not even sure where I got it. Continue reading Tried and True Pancake Recipe
This Shortbread Cookie recipe is ridiculously easy and since it bothered me to only use 3 ingredients, I added salt and vanilla to the mix, just to make me feel like it was worth my while :). But seriously, you simply need sugar, flour and butter and you have yourself some buttery, tender goodness, waiting to be dunked into hot chocolate while curling up in front of a good movie… Continue reading Basic Shortbread Recipe
I always dislike throwing anything away, even if it goes into the recycling can, so I had a few tin cans waiting to be repurposed. Since Valentine’s Day is around the corner I decided to turn the cans not only into cookie cutters, but gift containers to hold my Valentine’s shortbread cookies as well. Continue reading Valentine’s Day Cookies in a Can
There is something about creating your kids’ birthday cakes yourself and with only a couple of exceptions, I managed to do do so for a combined number of 18 birthday cakes. In addition, I have made cakes for family and friends, school functions and even sold a few of them. I began by decorating with buttercream icing, but was soon intrigued by the multitude of decorating options that come with fondant. My first attempt of making traditional fondant was a disaster and purchasing already-made fondant is quite expensive. Finally, I ran across a recipe for marshmallow fondant on “What’s Cooking America” and never looked back! I have used this recipe (or slight variations of it) for over 7 years now… Continue reading Marshmallow Fondant