May 28, 2020

When I was trying to come up with a title/subject for this week's blog, I turned to Jerry; he said it should be about family night. Initially, I was hesitant to use that title as we aren't officially married yet --can I call us a family? He assured me that I can and that we are. 

I love planning little special occasions to break up the monotony of the week. This week is the twin's 13th birthday, so I wanted to ensure that their time with us was extra special. I normally cook or bake at least one dish with the boys the week they're at our place, but I wanted to plan more.

On Monday (Memorial Day), we barbecued. Jerry grilled up some cheeseburgers and hot dogs, and the boys helped me make homemade lemonade with freshly squeezed lemons and boiled simple syrup. It was so good. 

On Tuesday, we made a No Fuss Lemon Tart (recipe by It's ironic that "no fuss" was in this recipe's title, especially since...

May 20, 2020

Last week, Jerry and I jumped on the healthy-eating bandwagon (after all the baking I've been doing, it was needed!), which meant I needed to find some great salad recipes. Here is what I whipped up for us.

Cilantro Lime Shrimp Ceviche Chopped Salad

This salad or "ceviche" was our absolute favorite. It is made with cooked shrimp, red onion, avocados, tomatoes, fresh lime juice, fresh cilantro leaves, sea salt and pepper. It's light, refreshing, and super yummy. Recipe by Clean Food Crush.

Broccoli Salad

We bought a huge bag of broccoli from Costco, so I wanted to figure out a new (to us) way to prepare it --rather than air frying, baking, steaming... This salad is sweet and savory with blanched broccoli, raisins, bacon, cheddar cheese, sunflower seeds, sour cream, mayo, sugar, and white vinegar (I slightly modified Sugar Spun Run's recipe). I find broccoli to be quite bland, even when infused with garlic and lemon, but this salad definitely added loads of flavor and texture to this veggie....

May 11, 2020

Chicken -- it's what's for dinner. To keep things fresh, I've been preparing chicken a variety of ways lately, sautéing white meat for fajitas, air frying dark meat, putting it into pies, baking it... Here are three ways that I've recently prepared chicken. 

Filipino Chicken Adobo

For those of you who don't know, I am half Italian, a quarter Chinese, and a quarter Filipina. My mom often cooked us chicken adobo as I was growing up, so this dish is pure comfort food for me. I tried one other chicken adobo recipe but quickly concluded that Mom's is my favorite. Made with fluffy white jasmine rice, this chicken dish is such a treat. And Jerry loved it. I prefer to use dark meat, but you can use white meat and even pork. I sautéed my chicken legs in lots of garlic, white vinegar, soy sauce, peppercorns, a bay leaf, then waited for it to reduce, and added a spoonful of sugar to the sauce at the end. The finished dish is deliciously salty and garlicky with a touch of sw...

May 1, 2020

Those who know me, know I live for sweets. Seriously. This is why I love to bake (because I love to eat!) and have always dreamed of opening a bakery/café. But I've been baking way too much lately, so I decided to scale back and only bake one dessert this week. I gave the boys three options: apple pie, peach cobbler, or chocolate chip cookies. They chose apple pie. Excellent choice!

Jerry joined me in the kitchen twice this week. I recruited his help for my Cheesy Beef Empanadas and Dutch Apple Pie with fresh whipped cream. Here are a few things I learned this week. 

Our Dutch Apple Pie came out perfect! I researched a number of dutch apple pie recipes before committing to this one: Dutch Apple Pie.  I also researched the best apples to use. We went with Golden Delicious and Honeycrisp. We followed the recipe to the tee. TIP: I brushed the bottom crust with egg wash as I heard this prevents a soggy bottom. 

Jerry and the boys helped with the pi...

April 21, 2020

This past week, I used some fun kitchen gadgets. I finally used my food processor (which I bought over a year ago) for the graham cracker crust on my New York-style cheesecake (Martha Stewart's recipe).

Cheesecakes are a labor of love. It's a process that takes hours, but my man wanted cheesecake, so he got one and it turned out delicious. It was rich and creamy, yet light and refreshing with a hint of lemon. We had cheesecake for dessert every night with different toppings: cherries, caramel, Nutella and crumbled Reese's Peanut Butter cups. 

I also cooked a rack of lamb for Easter (for the first time!), and it was surprisingly simple and very tasty. The store was out of fresh rosemary and mint jelly (No! Mint jelly is my lamb chop staple.), however, the recipe (by Ina Garten) worked well with dried rosemary and sans jelly. I like my meat pretty rare and these came out perfect --roasted for 25 minutes.

But what I was most excited about this week was...

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