My Substitute for the Sun

I know April showers bring May flowers, but the trees outside my window are already blossoming. I don’t need any more rain, not after the last wonderfully warm weekend!


But since the weatherman predicted rain, it must come true. And when the temperatures drop and the skies fall, I crave soup. Something warm and filling to thaw my toes and unfreeze my fingers.   Continue reading for recipe.


April 25, 2012. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Midweek Meals. Leave a comment.

Frozen With Fear

4 months. A full third of a year. That’s how long it’s been since I last cooked meat in my kitchen. Yes, I can hear the vegetarians cheering in victory and the carnivores groaning in agony. But after my vegan challenge ended in early July, there was still something appealing about not worrying if raw meat juices oozed all over my countertops or if pesky little bacteria infected my sponges.


Then again, when I realized I had a frozen chicken breast in the freezer with more ice on it than meat, it was time to face my fears and thaw him out. But how to cook him?   Continue reading for recipe.

September 19, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Midweek Meals, Satisfying Sides. Leave a comment.

The Lost Art of Simplicity

Nothing beats a two-ingredient dinner. But really, the only time that ever happens is when dialing take-out to order an entrée and side. Not exactly the healthiest—or cheapest—option… But this easy dish solves that dinner dilemma.    Continue reading for recipe.

March 25, 2011. Tags: , , , , , . Midweek Meals. 7 comments.

What To Do When The Weatherman Rains On Your Parade

Just when I thought I saw a sliver of spring sunshine peeking through, the winter rains returned—in full force. I should have learned my lesson ages ago… Never trust the weatherman. Especially if said weatherman is standing right next to you, showing you the “partially sunny” icons on an iPhone while raindrops fall on your head.


On the “bright” side, the showers did give me a second chance to pull out some recipes for the wintery comfort foods I never quite got around to making. Continue reading for recipe.

March 16, 2011. Tags: , , , , , . Midweek Meals. Leave a comment.

Not Your Typical Nursery Rhyme

Other than “Mary Had a Little Lamb” and “Baa, Baa Black Sheep,” not much enters my mind when I hear someone mention lamb. I don’t live in Scotland, so sheep don’t wander around my town’s grassy meadows, which limits my encounters to the occasional internet photograph or trip to the petting zoo.


Until I prepared a shepherd’s pie a few weeks ago. Then I got up close and personal with lamb. I enjoyed its savory flavor in the dish, but there was just one problem. Two-thirds of a pound still sat in my fridge after I cooked the pie. What was I supposed to do with all of that leftover meat?    Continue reading for recipe.

March 3, 2011. Tags: , , , , . Midweek Meals, Satisfying Sides. 5 comments.

S is for Shepherd’s Pie

This letter of the alphabet has been simmering on the back burner for a while now. Months ago, someone told me that although Trader Joe’s (my favorite grocery store) typically stocks tasty frozen dinners, their shepherd’s pie was thoroughly disappointing. He insisted that he could make a better one, and seeing as he enjoys cooking about as much as a trip to the dentist, I thought if he could, why couldn’t I?      Continue reading for recipe.

February 6, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , . Alphabet Adventure. 4 comments.

A Grown-Up’s Simple Pasta Sauce

Webster’s has the definition of winter entirely wrong. Winter should be defined as “the season where people crave and cook comfort food,” not just “the colder half of the year.” True, it is marked by dreary skies, freezing fingers, and frost-covered ground, but all of those make me long for something comforting, something that fills both me and my stomach with joy.


Even though childhood comfort foods are always satisfying, sometimes I still want the grown-up version. I recently reminisced and made a pasta sauce for picky eaters, but this time around, I wanted to dress it up a tad. The trick was maintaining that comfort feeling, even with adding in extra adult ingredients.      Continue reading for recipe.

February 1, 2011. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Midweek Meals. 2 comments.

To Be or Not To Be, That Is The Question

I’m pretty close to being a vegetarian.  I don’t eat that much meat, just the occasional piece of chicken or salmon fillet, and I’m perfectly content getting my protein from beans, milk, and yogurt.  I could never go vegan—I enjoy cheese too much!  But vegetarian…  I think I could handle that.      Continue reading.

January 18, 2011. Tags: , , , , . Midweek Meals. 6 comments.

Perfect Pairing

When I was younger, I always ordered ham and cheese, from sandwiches to omelettes.  I must admit, it took years before I was ready to branch out and try different meats on my sandwiches, and it was even longer before I put any veggies in my omelettes.  There’s just something completely comforting about the simple ham-and-cheese combination.  So when I started craving that childhood comfort combo, I decided to branch out in the other direction – no sandwich, no omelette, and no quiche, all of the typical ham-and-cheese dishes.  Instead, I went for… pasta!   Continue reading for recipe.

December 22, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , . Midweek Meals. Leave a comment.

P Squared

Growing up as a California girl, we rarely ever served meat and potatoes for dinner.  We ate lots of pasta, salads, and the occasional pork tenderloin or barbequed hamburgers (almost never ribs or steak), and potatoes were reserved for veggie stir-fries or mashing on Thanksgiving.  Yet strangely enough, I was craving potatoes again.  There’s something about this chilly winter weather that has me lusting after pan-fried potatoes, with their crispy golden skins and soft delicate insides.  Add a generous sprinkling of salt on top, and they’re absolutely irresistible.  Thankfully, this time I was prepared, and I had a couple of small red potatoes sitting in my fridge.  And the perfect complement to potatoes?  Pork chops!   Continue reading for recipe.

December 10, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , . Midweek Meals. Leave a comment.

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