Beef Stew with Charred Rainbow Carrots

Oh Top Chef you've done it to me again.  I swear I watch that show and just am blown away but the creativity that comes out of those chefs on the fly and under stressful conditions.  On a recent episode one of the chefs charred carrots on a wood smoker and then used them as the star of his vegetarian dish.  The judges went wild for it and, for me, it reinforced the idea behind how I like to cook - highlight one simple ingredient to make a twist on a classic dish. While this isn't ... Continue Reading

Steak Bites over Bacon Wrapped Potato

with truffle mushroom and horseradish sauce Steak and potato.  Yeah, it's been done about a million different ways so there's nothing new under the sun here except we are just going to go for it in the decadence department.  I'm throwing it all in.  Juicy New York steak, bacon wrapped around a slice of potato and then crisped to perfection, mushrooms sautéed in butter and then tossed in black truffle oil. Oh and to top it off there is a creamy horseradish sauce and of course a few chives ... Continue Reading

Greek Kebab Skewers

If you can't travel to Greece this year then bring the flavors and aromas of Greece to you. We are all missing travel right now and looking for ways to stay connected to the world around us.  I love watching cooking travel shows on Netflix like 'Feed Phil' and 'Chef's Table' for inspiration and to feel like I've actually been somewhere! When I was a young twenty something I had the chance to go to the Greek Islands and let me tell you it was an experience I'll never forget and, especially now, ... Continue Reading

Smoked Salmon Spread

What is the difference between a spread and a dip?  In my book, a spread should be thicker (not runny) and a dip should be able to be scooped up and eaten with a chip or a delicate cracker.   You don't want your spread dripping through your bread and making it soggy and you don't want your chip to get stuck mid dip - like a tire in the mud. This smoked salmon and cream cheese spread is meant to slather on toast or a bagel for a simple but delicious breakfast.  But, I will say, that I did ... Continue Reading

The Perfect Giant Meatball

Let's face it, there is something really appealing about eating a giant meatball.  It's like a feat.  Sure you can eat ten smaller meatballs and you are bound to be just as full but there is so much less satisfaction than knowing you conquered the giant meatball, right?  And just the presentation alone is worth it, friends.  Here's your plate and your one giant meatball.  Enjoy.  People get a kick out of it.  Well...at least I do. I've made a lot of meatballs in my life and there are ... Continue Reading

The Perfect Meatball

Oh yeah.  I said it.  It's a bold move to call this the perfect meatball but I really think I may have a winner.  Take it from the girl who has made countless meatballs over the years and tried every kind of technique and recipe out there.  This recipe is culmination of my years of learning and refining.  And the best part?  It's a pretty straightforward, basic recipe.  No gimmics.  But trust me....this ain't your mamma's meatball.  It is crunchy on the outside and oh-so-tender on the ... Continue Reading

Tea Sandwiches

These tea sandwiches are perfect for any crowd and any occasion when it comes to easy entertaining.  There is a vegetarian version and a meat version so you can have all the bases covered and they both have a scrumptious herbed butter on the bread that resembles the classic watercress tea sandwiches served in England.  Perhaps best of all is that this is one of those easy, no-cook recipes but still looks fancy for entertaining.  These tea sandwiches can be part of a brunch, bridal shower, ... Continue Reading

Beef Short Rib Mini Tacos with Pickled Radish

Looking for that great appetizer that will make you look like a chef?  This is that kind of a dish.  It's not a traditional taco with Mexican flavors.  It's has more of a hearty beef flavor to it from the slow cooking process with wine and herbs and tomato paste.  By itself it's not spicy at all.  But I definitely recommend serving it with an array of toppings including the pickled radish.  When you serve something as rich as slow cooked beef you need something to cut through that ... Continue Reading

Flank Steak Fajita Roll Ups

Flank steak makes a wonderful fajita because it's a flavorful cut of meat that isn't too expensive and, when cooked right, it's super tender.  I really like to marinate the steak as long as possible, at least for a few hours, but overnight is even better.  The steak is the star of the dish here, closely followed by the sweet peppers and onion and the creamy Garlic Parsley Spread so it's important to get the cooking of the steak right.  Cumin is a classic flavor with fajitas but if you ... Continue Reading

Crispy Potato with Flank Steak and Horseradish Creme Fraiche

The holidays are all about gatherings and good times and food is such a central part to that.  When I entertain at the holidays, whichever holiday it is, I like to pick dishes that use seasonal ingredients and where the flavors are reminiscent of that holiday.  For me, the Christmas season usually has some kind of a beef dish with horseradish sauce involved, which is a rich dish, so I though it would be fun to make a dish with those classic ... Continue Reading