The store had fresh blueberries for $.88 per pint so I loaded up and now I am determined to use them up before they spoil or I have to freeze them.

Love these muffins; loaded with fresh juicy blueberries!

Damage is courtesy of my son...he likes to grab at whatever I am trying to take a picture of but at least you can see how yummy they are!

Blueberry Streusel Muffins
Adapted from
Makes 8 large muffins

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
1 cup fresh blueberries
1/2 cup white sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter, cubed
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease muffin cups or line with muffin liners.

Make Streusel Topping: Mix together 1/2 cup sugar, 1/3 cup flour, 1/4 cup butter, and 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon. Mix and cut with fork.

Combine 1 1/2 cups flour, 3/4 cup sugar, salt and baking powder. Place vegetable oil into a 1 cup measuring cup; add the egg and enough milk to fill the cup. Mix this with flour mixture. Batter will be thick. Add a little more milk if it is too thick. Fold in blueberries.

Fill muffin cups right to the top,

cover with streusel topping.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, or until done.

A little hummingbird (at the bottome of the picture) outside my kitchen window visiting the hosta blooms or as my daughter calls them "pasta" blooms.




First off, let me apologize for the pictures. This is the type of meal that you smell, see and want to eat the second you can and that is what I time for pictures! I also divided this recipe in half because all I could find was a split breast when I went to the market but that was perfect for our family. Make sure that you use a meat thermometer to test the temperature, especially if you are using a split breast because it was done sooner than 2 hours. I will post a recipe for the smashed red potatoes next..they were delicious!

Herb Roasted Turkey Breast
Adapted from Ina Garten
Serves 6

1 whole bone-in turkey breast
1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
2 teaspoons dry mustard
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons good olive oil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup dry white wine

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Place the turkey breast, skin side up, on a rack in a roasting pan.

In a small bowl, combine the garlic, mustard, herbs, salt, pepper, olive oil, and lemon juice to make a paste.

Loosen the skin from the meat gently with your fingers and smear half of the paste directly on the meat.

Spread the remaining paste evenly on the skin.

Pour the wine into the bottom of the roasting pan.

Roast the turkey for 1 3/4 to 2 hours, until the skin is golden brown and an instant-read thermometer registers 165 degrees F when inserted into the thickest and meatiest areas of the breast. (I test in several places.) If the skin is over-browning, cover the breast loosely with aluminum foil. When the turkey is done, cover with foil and allow it to rest at room temperature for 15 minutes.

Slice and serve with the pan juices spooned over the turkey.




It was the most beautiful summer day today; sunny and 70's...perfect for heading downtown to the Farmers' Market. I love going to the Farmers' Market on Saturdays but sometimes it is a little stressful with the kids in tow...I am usually in and out within minutes. So today was extra fun because I picked up my mom on the way which meant I had a babysitter...I mean a nana! I was able take my time to look everything over and find exactly what I wanted. I saw the most delicious looking zucchini and I instantly thought of Zucchini Pappardelle, a recipe that I have been waiting to try.

Pappardelle is Italian for "wide noodles", like fettuccine. The name derives from the verb “pappare,” to gobble up and that is exactly what I did with this dish. I am a pasta freak and I didn't miss the pasta at all.

Zucchini Pappardelle- Clean Eating
Adapted loosely from Emeril Lagasse
Serves 4

2 pounds medium zucchini (about 4)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves minced garlic
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 small red onion
1/4 cup chicken broth
1 1/2 cups fresh tomato sauce, recipe follows
1 cup cherry tomatoes, quartered
1/4 cup fresh herbs--equal parts minced fresh tarragon, sliced chives, pickled chervil, and chopped parsley leaves
Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (optional)

For Fresh Tomato Sauce:
2 pounds plum tomatoes (about 10), peeled, seeded and diced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 large cloves garlic, smashed
1 sprig fresh basil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Note/confession: I totally cheated and used jar tomato sauce...I don't know, when the time came to make the sauce I lost all motivation and I had a jar in the fridge just waiting to be used. Tasted awesome but I am sure Emeril's sauce would be great too! Let me know if you use this sauce recipe and how it turns looks pretty basic so I am sure you can't go wrong.

Make the tomato sauce:
Put the tomatoes along with the olive oil, garlic, and basil in a saucepan. Season with salt and pepper, and bring to a simmer. Cook for about 15 minutes. Discard the basil leaf and puree with a hand blender. Put the sauce in a bowl and set aside.

Trim the blossom off the zucchini. Use a mandolin and slice the zucchini lengthwise into very thin strips. Discard the center seedy pieces and separate the slices.

Warm the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, and red onion and cook until fragrant.
Add the zucchini and toss until just barley wilted, few minutes (if your zucchini slices are thicker like mine it may take a little longer.)

Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add the tomato sauce and bring to simmer while tossing. Add cherry tomatoes and remove from heat. Add fines herbs and toss again. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Divide the pappardelle onto plates and shower with the cheese. Serve immediately.




I posted a Greek Yogurt Smoothie recipe a few months ago and I had a good idea on there what to do with almost expired yogurt...check it out if you are interested. Truth is I mainly make these smoothies for my kids because I have a hard time with the smell and taste of yogurt. For you yogurt lovers out there you should love it and for you non yogurt lovers (like me) just add more honey and you wont be able to taste the yogurt. :)

Blueberry Yogurt Smoothie
Adapted loosely from The Pioneer Woman
Serves 2

1 cup Plain, Unflavored Yogurt (I prefer Greek 0% fat because of the high protein)
1 cup blueberries
1 banana
1/4 cup Skim Milk

(Note: Don't limit the flavor to blueberry and banana...use your choice of fruit: raspberries, Peaches, Pineapple, etc)

Place yogurt, fruit, milk, a handful of ice and honey to taste all into a blender. Blend until smooth. Taste it for sweetness and add more honey if needed.
Pour, drink and enjoy!

My little helper always has to be in charge of the blender; I am not allowed to touch it!

Hope everyone has a great weekend!




This dish is lovely; light and is so easy to make and tastes amazing. I especially love the lemon and capers combined. Everyone enjoyed it including the baby and 2 can't go wrong.

Chicken Piccata Pasta Toss
Adapted from Rachael Ray
Serves 4

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/3 pounds chicken breast tenders, cut into 1-inch pieces
Salt and pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 shallots, chopped
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 cup white wine
1 lemon, juiced
1 cup chicken broth or stock
3 tablespoons capers, drained
1/2 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 pound penne rigate pasta, cooked to al dente
Chopped or snipped chives, for garnish (optional)

Note: I used about 1/4 cup more white wine, 1/2 cup more chicken broth, 1 small onion, omitted chives and added Parmesan!

Heat a deep nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add a tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil and the chicken to the pan. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Brown chicken until lightly golden all over, about 5 to 6 minutes.

Remove chicken from pan and return the skillet to the heat. Reduce heat to medium. Add another tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter, the garlic and shallots to the skillet. Saute garlic and shallots 3 minutes.

Add flour and cook 2 minutes. Whisk in wine and reduce liquid 1 minute.

Whisk lemon juice and broth into sauce. Stir in capers and parsley. When the liquid comes to a bubble, add remaining 1/2 tablespoon butter to the sauce to give it a little shine. Add chicken back to the pan and heat through, 1 to 2 minutes.

Toss hot pasta with chicken and sauce and serve. Adjust salt and pepper, to your taste. Top with fresh snipped chives if you are using.

This girl was about 10 feet away from my kitchen window. The deer have a path that goes through the trees in our yard that leads to the river. On rare occasions they jump our rock wall and come close to the house and sometimes they are daring enough to go into my garden.




New food jag...I'm over bacon and onto molasses cookies. I can't get enough of them. I bought one the other day at Breadsmith and the next day at Kaladi's so I figured it is time I bake my own. I was searching for recipes online when I remembered I had one marked in my ATK cookbook. I was excited when I saw that it had a dark rum glaze...yum! These cookies are so good...too good for the freezer; they will actually be eaten up quickly in this house.

Molasses Spice Cookies with Dark Rum Glaze
Adapted from The Complete America's Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook
Makes 22 (made 26 with small Pampered Chef Scoop)

1/3 cup (about 2 1/3 ounces) granulated sugar, plus 1/2 cup for dipping
2 1/4 cups (11 1/4 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon finely ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
12 Tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup packed (2 1/3 ounces) dark brown sugar
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup light or dark molasses

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Place 1/2 cup sugar for dipping cake pan or shallow bowl.

Whisk flour, baking soda, spices, and salt in medium bowl until thoroughly combined; set aside.

In standing mixer fitted with paddle attachment (a hand mixer works fine too), beat butter with brown sugar and remaining 1/3 cup granulated sugar at medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to medium-low and add yolk and vanilla; increase speed to medium and beat until incorporated, about 20 seconds. Reduce speed to medium-low and add molasses; beat until fully incorporated, about 20 seconds, scraping bottom and sides of bowl once with rubber spatula. Reduce speed to lowest setting; add flour mixture and beat until just incorporated, about 30 seconds, scraping down bowl once. Give dough a final stir by hand to ensure that no pockets of flour remain at bottom. Dough will be soft.

Using tablespoon measure, (I use my small Pampered Chef Scoop-Love it!) scoop heaping tablespoon of dough and roll it between your palms into 1 1/4-inch to 1 1/2-inch ball; drop ball into cake pan or bowl with sugar and repeat to form about 4 balls. Toss balls in sugar to coat.

Set on prepared baking sheet, spacing them about 2 inches apart. Repeat with remaining dough.

Bake, one sheet at a time and reversing position of baking sheet from front to back halfway through baking, until cookies are browned, still puffy, and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft (cookies will look raw between the cracks and seem underdone), about 11 minutes. Do not over bake.

Cool the cookies on baking sheet for 5 minutes, then use wide metal spatula to transfer cookies to wire rack; cool cookies to room temperature and serve.

While cookies are cooling make the Dark Rum Glaze:
Whisk 1 cup confectioners’ sugar (about 4 ounces) and 2 1/2 to 3 tablespoons dark rum in medium bowl until smooth.

Drizzle glaze over cooled cookies with spoon, and spread glaze around cookie with the back of the spoon.

Allow glaze to dry for an additional 10 minutes.

If you don't like dark rum, I have heard lemoncello is a delicious substitute.

Printable Recipe



One of my favorite things about summer is my vegetable garden. I absolutely love walking outside barefoot in my backyard and picking vegetables and fruits. I love feeling the hot dry dirt under my feet, smelling a tomato that has been baking in the sun for hours or picking a hot juicy strawberry and letting it explode in my mouth. Those are the moments...the memories that dance through my head to make my long cold winters a little more tolerable.

Every spring I attempt to plant all the vegetables I need for Pico de Gallo, my favorite summertime treat. Sadly, this summer I have no cilantro to speak of and my jalapenos look awful. My friends better watch out for their know who you are!

So here is pico de gallo, a la graham (my style)! Make sure you taste along the way so you get it just the way you want it.

Pico de Gallo- Clean Eating
Makes alot...perfect for a party!

8 medium tomatoes
1 large sweet white onion
24 roasted garlic cloves, about 1/3 cup, I buy in a jar
1 bunch green onions
1 bunch of cilantro
2 large jalapenos

Chop the tomatoes...


green onions (dark and light green parts), cilantro (not the stems) and jalapenos.
I always keep all the jalapeno seeds in but if you are worried it will be too hot eliminate some or all of the seeds, likewise, want more heat add more jalapeno.

Ahhh, and don't forget the garlic. I LOVE garlic so I put almost the entire jar in (which if my calculation is correct, would be approximately 24 roasted garlic gloves!) Feel free to use less...or much less!

Put everything in a large bowl and combine. Let it sit for an hour on the counter so the flavors mingle. Before serving, add salt and pepper (to taste) and fresh squeezed lime juice.

Now, for what I really love!
Once I have my pico made I put it in 2 containers and to half of the pico I add...
30 ounces (2 cans) of organic black beans
15 ounces (1 can) of organic corn

This is the best...loaded with black beans!

And then.... I take 2 avocados

smash them up in a bowl with a fork and add about 1 cup of Pico for the most delicious guacamole ever!

Now you have 3 fabulous salsas/dips so you better make some
homemade flour tortillas and tacos!




These biscuits are so yummy and easy to make, I had to add them to my recipe collection. I cannot say that I ever crave biscuits but if I did these would be what I make. My family loved them...light, flaky and salty! If you don't like salty biscuits cut back a little on the salt in the recipe or don't add the sea salt on top.

I halved the recipe (as you can see in the pictures) and it still made 5 rather large biscuits. I would suggest using a a really good quality extra-sharp cheddar cheese.

Buttermilk Cheddar Biscuits
Adapted from Ina Garten, Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics
Makes 8 large biscuits

2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, diced
1/2 cup cold buttermilk, shaken
1 cold extra-large egg
1 cup grated Cheddar
1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water or milk
Sea salt, optional

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Place 2 cups of flour, the baking powder, and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. With the mixer on low, add the butter and mix until the butter is the size of peas.

Combine the buttermilk and egg in a small measuring cup and beat lightly with a fork. With the mixer still on low, quickly add the buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture and mix only until moistened. In a small bowl, mix the Cheddar with small handful of flour and, with the mixer still on low, add the cheese to the dough. Mix only until roughly combined.

Dump out onto a well-floured board and knead lightly about 6 times.

Roll the dough out to a rectangle 10 by 5 inches.

With a sharp, floured knife, cut the dough lengthwise in half and then across in quarters, making 8 rough rectangles.

Transfer to a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Brush the tops with the egg wash, sprinkle with just a little bit of salt, if using, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the tops are browned and the biscuits are cooked through. Serve hot or warm.

Loving summer...



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