Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Real-Chili Chili Mac Casserole

Real-Chili Chili Mac Casserole

This cheesy gratin is comfort food for the whole family

Chili. Cheese. Pasta. Bring ‘em on!

And this dish does, in delicious combination. It’s a quick-bake casserole that makes a perfect cold-weather meal. It even gives you an excuse to use leftover chili.

You can have this dish on the table in about 30 minutes, so it’s great for weeknight dinners. But it’s tasty enough for company, too.

So take this along to your next pot-luck event. Like maybe your neighbor’s annual Super Bowl party. Who cares which team wins the game? You’ve won the meal.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Cabbage Chili with Spicy Sausage

Cabbage Chili with Spicy Sausage

Black-eyed peas add savor to this healthy cold-weather pleaser

Cabbage chili? Yeah, not something you’re likely to find in Texas. But totally worth having.

Particularly since cabbage has almost no calories. Many of us are diet conscious this time of year, so that’s a winner.

But the biggest winner is the flavor. We’ve loaded this dish with lots of dried chile powder and other spices, so it has all the deep chili flavor you expect from, well, chili.

This dish makes a great weekday meal, but it’s good enough to serve at an informal weekend gathering with friends. Like, maybe, for football playoffs or the Super Bowl. Score!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

The Fanciulli Cocktail

The Faniulli Cocktail

This classic charmer is essentially a Manhattan made with Fernet-Branca

The Manhattan Cocktail is one of our favorites. It’s a smooth combo of rye or bourbon and sweet (Italian) vermouth, spiced up with Angostura bitters.

Well, replace the bitters with Fernet-Branca (an Italian liqueur), and you have the Fanciulli Cocktail. This drink is largely forgotten today, but it seems to have been quite popular in pre-Prohibition America.

Time for a revival, no? Especially since the the Fanciulli’s spicy flavor makes it perfect for winter sipping.

We like to serve the Fanciulli as a predinner drink, though it’s great any time of the day. Well, maybe not for breakfast. But you know what we mean.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Christmas Cookie and Cocktail Recipe Roundup

Cherry Winks Cookies

Indulge yourself this holiday season with some terrific goodies

Our consumption of cookies and cocktails goes up this time of year. The holiday season just inspires us to munch and sip.

So this week, we’ve collected some past recipes – for cookies and cocktails, of course – that we think you’ll find seasonally appropriate.

We’re ready for a holiday break, too, so this will be our last post of the year. But these recipes should warm the hearth until we see you again in 2017.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Cranberry Shrub Cocktail with Bourbon

Cranberry Shrub Cocktail with Bourbon

You can also make a kid-friendly version of this holiday drink

Ready for some holiday cheer? So are we.

The season calls out for cranberries, of course. And bourbon is perfect for warming a long December night. Mix them both with a tangy, vinegary shrub syrup, and you have a cocktail that even Santa can’t resist. (But we know some of his elves don’t drink, so we provide instructions for a nonalcoholic version of the cocktail, too.)

Wishing you a berry merry December.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Italian Sesame Cookies

Italian Sesamee Cookies

A grown-up treat that’s not over sweet

Christmas is coming up soon. And that means cookies. We bake lots of them at our house.

But sometimes we need to lessen the sugar overload. Which this cookie does, with style. It has just enough sweetness to satisfy, but not too much.

These cookies are great with tea or coffee, or with the classic glass of milk. They make a nice afternoon treat, too.

Even your kids will like these. And you? Let’s call it love.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Roast Carrots and Parsnips with Herbs

Roast Carrots and Parsnips with herbs

The deep, sweet flavor of this dish will please even the veggie averse

Roasting concentrates the flavor of veggies, coaxing out their savor and natural sweetness. Which makes roast vegetables perfect for a festive dinner – such as, say, Thanksgiving.

These roast carrots and parsnips aren’t just something you’ll eat because “they’re good for you.” In fact, their flavor is so inviting, you may find them stealing the spotlight from your main dish.

Moral of the story? Make extra. Loads extra.