Culinary Travels to Texas

Culinary Travels to Texas
  Up until this July, I had never been to Texas.  My husband was actually born there however has never returned.  This year’s USPCA (United States Personal Chef Association) conference was being held in San Antonio and I can tell you that I was more than excited to attend.  Initially, I was looking forward to be surrounded by other chefs, like myself, but as the departure date drew closer I knew I was going to have fun exploring the culinary world of the South.  Not liking to fly, I choose to drive the 1200 miles to San Antonio via New Mexico.  Yes, I was avoiding the planes but I validated the ...

My Garden Fresh Tomato Favorites

My Garden Fresh Tomato Favorites
We wait all year long for fresh ripened tomatoes as they taste unlike any you purchase at the store. Why is that? Well I am sure there are lots of reasons but the store bought tomatoes simply just don’t compare. So now that garden fresh tomatoes have arrived, what do we do with them all? Or should I ask, what do we do with the ones that actually make it into the kitchen as I know many don’t travel that far. Here are my favorites:   Caprese Salad Layers of fresh ripened garden tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil leaves, my best olive oil, salt and pepper. For more flavor drizzle with good ...

The School of Essential Ingredients, by Erica Bauermeister 2010

School of Essential Ingredients
I may appear to be obsessed with the ingredients in my kitchen however the ingredients of my life is what truly matters to me. The School of Essential Ingredients was a fun book to read, less about the ingredients of recipes and more about the people in our lives and their importance to us. I have to admit that as much as I enjoy teaching my students how to be successful in the kitchen, I love the diversity each and every one of them brings to my life. This book is a great example of how the common desire of food, cooking and eating can bring people of such diversity ...

For the Love of Lavender

For the Love of Lavender
When many people think of lavender, they envision purple flowers, soap, oils and candles. When I think of lavender, I think lemonade, cookies, and creme brûlée. No surprise right?

The Flavor Bible

The Flavor Bible
I am often asked.. “What is your favorite cookbook?”  or “What cookbook could you never live without?” or something of the like.  Well, yes I am a cookbook addict.  I admit it.  I am sucker for cookbooks of all kinds especially ones with pretty photos, not just usual photos though, you know the photos that you can taste and smell (well imaginatively speaking of course).  Some chefs claim that the best cookbooks don’t have photos.  I can understand this statement from an educational perspective however we all know “pretty” sells.  I have cookbooks ranging from culinary text, yard sale finds to best sellers.  I use them all for inspiration and love different perspectives ...

My Family’s 3 Favorite Food Groups

My Family’s 3 Favorite Food Groups
Every now and then we must indulge, enjoy and savor what life has to offer. Enjoying each bite of life truly helps me appreciate what I have and what more there is to come! This cake is not the norm at our house but sometimes we just really need to celebrate life. This cake, however does have my family’s three favorite food groups; butter, cheese and sugar. I felt much better about the cake after drizzling it with a fresh berry coulis….at least it had fruit in it!

What Is In Your Spice Pantry?

What Is In Your Spice Pantry
Most of us can relate to the saying “Spring Cleaning” however for me Fall is the season to take inventory of my pantry, specifically my spice pantry. Yes, I do cook with spices year round and to the level of obsession sometimes, however fall and winter menus tend to require more dried herbs and spices than summer and spring dishes when fresh ingredients are more readily available. So as the colder months approach I want to be prepared with the best ingredients. Here are a few tips to help you with your spice pantry. Storage – make sure your spices are well sealed and stored in a temperature stable area.  Do not store ...
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