Turkey and Ricotta Meatballs

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Remember that chocolate cake from Julia Turshen I've been raving about? These Turkey and Ricotta Meatballs are another recipe from her book, Small Victories.  I've made them several times, and they are simply delightful. While the sauce she features in the book is great, I have chosen to use my favorite sauce recipe by Marcella Hazan, which is groan-worthy in it's own right, and so easy.

Twenty Things I Love From Childhood

Friday, January 27, 2017

I am grateful to my parents for providing a safe, nourishing and loving childhood for me. It is one of the things I am most grateful for in life. Every child in the world deserves memories like this. And while many of us have less than perfect starts in life, we are in control of the present and the future and have the ability to start today with creating a warm and loving environment in our home.

1. Crawling into bed with my parents on a stormy night, feeling safe between their warm bodies while the thunder ripped across a blackened sky.

2. Living on a 50-acre farm in Holmes County, Ohio where daily meals around the table were an important part of our lives.

Lemon Bars

Monday, January 23, 2017

bFearless Lemon Bars 

Nothing brightens a cloudy, damp day like a burst of sunshine, whether in the sky or on a plate, and these lemon bars do just that. From their buttery crust to their velvety lemon curd filling to the dusting of confectioner's sugar on top, these bars bring smiles and groans of delight.  This is the best recipe I've found, and I've tried quite a few. With just a few tweaks, this winning recipe from Smitten Kitchen will be my new favorite for this gloriously tart, lemon dessert.

Happy Wife, Happy Life Chocolate Cake

Monday, January 16, 2017

Happy Wife, Happy Life Chocolate Cake 

Winter days can seem to stretch on forever, but you can brighten someone's day by baking this decadent chocolate cake that's so easy it literally just takes minutes to assemble. It's similar to my own stash of favorite cake recipes - ones that are tattered from use with splashes of coffee and smudges of chocolate around the edges - but, quite frankly, one of the best I've made. Or tasted, for that matter. Many thanks to Julia Turshen for taking this recipe to absolute perfection. 

Gingerbread Waffles

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Gingerbread Waffles 
Gingerbread Waffles
(Yields 8 small waffles)


1 cup flour
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons ginger
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup yogurt
1/4 cup whole milk
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1 egg
3 tablespoons butter, melted


Mix all ingredients together in a bowl, just until combined. Cook according to waffle iron directions. I usually cook for 6 minutes. Transfer carefully to a rack to cool slightly. They will firm up within 30 seconds or so and will be easier to handle.

These are good to eat plain, just like a cookie, but feel free to garnish with whipped cream, fresh fruit and maple syrup.

Baked Oatmeal with Roasted Blueberries

Friday, January 6, 2017

Baked Oatmeal with Roasted Blueberries 

A Providential Journey

Coconut Tapioca with Caramelized Ginger Lychees (recipe below).

Hung Quach is no stranger to travel. Indeed, the life of this successful freelance photographer and stylist started out with a dangerous adventure many of us could barely imagine. At the age of nine months, Quach and her family joined the wave of "boat people" fleeing South Vietnam in the aftermath of the war.  Pushing off in a makeshift wooden boat with only a few meager possessions and the clothes on their back they cast their lot with fate and sailed for Indonesia, While many died during this exodus (from typhoons, pirates, starvation), Hung and her family were some of the lucky ones. The hand of Providence covered their journey, and, after sailing for two weeks, they arrived in Indonesia where they were placed in a refugee camp while their papers were processed. Later, that same hand guided them to settle in Australia where Hung spent her growing-up years in Sydney.