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Archives for April 2010

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JP’s Marinara

by TT April 30th, 2010| Recipes, Spreads & Sauces
It's April vacation week in our state, so the kids have had a relaxing week.  With no school there also has been no gymnastics, no track practice, no conditioning sessions, no dinner has to be served at an exact time to meet our schedules' needs.  Of course, that doesn't mean that it was a quiet week here.  When you have a teen and almost teen in your house, time off from school equals time spent with friends.  So, for three of the four weeknights there were sleepovers either at our house, a friend's house, or both.

On the fourth night,
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Oster Professional Series Blender

by TT April 28th, 2010| Equipment Reviews
Most mornings I am a creature of habit.  Without the aid of an alarm, I am awake at 6:00.  By 6:15 I am starting that day's workout.  Some time after cooling down, I make my breakfast.  Typically, this breakfast is an egg white wrap or a fruit smoothie.  The egg white wrap never was a problem; cook a few eggs in the skillet, throw them in a wrap, and add some spinach or veggie sausage and cheese, and breakfast is ready.  The smoothie, however, was a bit of a problem.

I've owned a few blenders, and all of them have
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A Great Farm to Table Restaurant

by TT April 26th, 2010| Restaurant News
I had an interview scheduled with Ed Aloise last Monday at 10:00 a.m.  Ed is the co-owner and restaurant manager of Republic in Manchester, New Hampshire.  I arrived at the designated time and was informed that Ed was not there but would return shortly.  My initial impression was that perhaps he had forgotten the interview.  However, after a few moments waiting, I received a phone call from Ed; he hadn't forgotten.  However, his restaurant had had a greater crowd than anticipated over the weekend. Therefore, he was trying to restock before Monday's lunch diners arrived.

When Ed arrived a
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Oven Baked Burritos

by TT April 21st, 2010| Main Dishes, Recipes
One of the great things about having access to a grocery store with a fabulous butcher is the amazing variety of meats we can purchase.  When we first visited this grocery store, we were excited to see sections for lamb and veal, each of which were as big as the chicken section in a typical store.  With a department this big and only two freezers in which to store our purchases, we experimented with new cuts, seasonings, and meats in each shopping expedition.

The variety of sausages available there is just as amazing as the rest of the butcher department.  They
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Yogurt & Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

by TT April 19th, 2010| Breads, Recipes
Sometimes recipes are created because of the ingredients that happen to be in my kitchen.  This recipe is the perfect example of that.  Yesterday afternoon I noticed that the two bananas remaining from a recent shopping trip were very ripe.  I also knew that most likely they wouldn't be eaten plain in the next day or two.  The bananas became the starting point for my recipe.

I could have made a banana bread using a tried and true recipe.  However, when I got butter out of the refrigerator for the recipe, I noticed that we had vanilla yogurt.  The yogurt led
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Simple Cheese Sauce

by TT April 16th, 2010| Recipes, Spreads & Sauces
On Wednesday I posted the recipe for Black Bean & Beef Nachos.  In the directions, I noted that you can top the nachos with either shredded cheese or cheese sauce.  As observant readers would have noticed in the picture, the kids opted for a cheese sauce topping on their nachos. While the thought of making cheese sauce from scratch may sound daunting, it really isn't.

This simple to make cheese sauce also is quite versatile.  It can be used with cooked pasta to make homemade mac and cheese.  It also can be used as a topping for steamed veggies or
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Black Bean & Beef Nachos

by TT April 14th, 2010| Appetizers, Recipes
Some nights the dinner menu is based on the weather, such as serving homemade soup and bread on a cold, dreary day.  Other nights the menu is based on our schedules.  If we have a night where everyone is running in opposite directions, a simple crockpot dinner may be in order.  Occasionally, the dinner menu is based on a whim.

That was the case on Monday night.  Typically, one of the kids chooses the menu for their Monday dinner, as my husband and I eat a late tapas meal that night.  However, due to this, that, and the other thing, we
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Greek Pockets

by TT April 12th, 2010| Appetizers, Recipes, Tapas Monday
It's Monday, and as such I am creating tonight's tapas menu.  While doing this, I realized that I had published only one of the two recipes that I created for our menu two weeks ago.  Having already shared the recipe for Eggplant Rolls, it certainly is time to share the recipe for Greek Pockets.

I made this dish with the intention of creating a fairly simple item for our dinner that had an assortment of Greek ingredients.  Lamb sausage seemed like the perfect main ingredient for this dish.  The bigger question was how to deliver the lamb sausage.  For me,
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Oreo Ice Cream Pie

by TT April 9th, 2010| Desserts, Recipes
We hosted Easter brunch at our house last weekend.  With a group of twelve, there was plenty of food to share.  Mini quiches, lemon poppy seed bread, roasted asparagus, fruit salad, maple glazed sweet potatoes, and ham were served for our early afternoon meal.  Having filled our stomachs sufficiently and having been graced with blue skies and very warm weather, we headed outside for an hour or two of basketball, baseball, and an egghunt.

Of course, all of that fresh air and exercise reinvigorated our appetites.  Thankfully we had two desserts to quench any hunger pangs: almond pound cake with strawberry-rhubarb
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Eggplant Rolls

by TT April 7th, 2010| Appetizers, Recipes, Tapas Monday
Although there were five Mondays in the month of March, there were only two Tapas Mondays at our house.  Due to a hectic business schedule, only the first and last Mondays were available for such a designation.  While I could be an independent woman and eat tapas alone at 9:00, it really isn't as fun as it might sound. . .

So, after a 3-week hiatus from tapas, I was ready to create a meal consisting of new dishes.  With our love for cheeses (especially melted cheese), I knew I had to include some in our menu.  As I had seen
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Sugar Biscuits

by TT April 2nd, 2010| Breads, Recipes
We celebrated my husband's birthday this past Sunday evening, which meant that he chose the entire menu.  It was a simple menu: grilled steaks topped with butter, broccoli, and Caesar salad.  I asked if he wanted some sort of starch, and he requested sugar biscuits.  That is where the simple menu became more difficult.  Yes, I don't know when not to ask for more. . .

While sugar biscuits may seem easy, and they are, the problem is that he likes a particular type of sugar biscuits served at a Maryland restaurant, Friendly Farm.  So, instead of simply being a request
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