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.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Chipotle Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Chipotle Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Smoky chipotle revs up this Thanksgiving favorite

Thanksgiving is coming soon here in the US. And that means sweet potatoes are on the menu.

Sweet potatoes are naturally, well, sweet. So let’s take those innocent little spuds for a walk on the wild side. Smoky, spicy chipotle chilies can teach them to sing – and dance on your tongue.

Best of all, there’s no need to confine this dish to the Thanksgiving table. It’s so tasty, we predict you’ll find yourself serving it all year round. Sweet.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Green Chile Cauliflower 'n Cheese

Green Chile Cauliflower 'n Cheese

A slimmed down, kicked up twist on mac ‘n cheese

We love mac ‘n cheese. And it loves us back. So if we eat too much, it sticks to our ribs. Like, permanently.

So sometimes we make a healthier, less fattening version by substituting cauliflower for macaroni. The cheese keeps this dish from being truly low cal, of course. But you get the idea.

And this dish tastes great! Spicy green chilies love to snuggle with cheese, and both blend happily with cauliflower.

This dish makes a great side for a weeknight, or even a fancy weekend dinner. Plus, it’s hearty enough to serve as a main – just add salad for a complete meal.

And if you’re looking for a new dish to accompany your Thanksgiving turkey or ham? You just found it.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

The Pink Gin Cocktail

The Pink Gin Cocktail

This blend of gin and bitters is a British Royal Navy original

Next Tuesday is election day in the US. Finally.

You’ll need a drink, of course – whether to celebrate victory or console yourself in loss. And you’ll want something bracing, with a bit of authority to it.

May we suggest a Pink Gin? It works great as a pre-dinner drink (the austere but perky flavor can wake up the tiredest taste buds). But it also makes a great libation when you just, well, want a drink. Or need one.

So here’s a toast to the end of campaign season. At last.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Pumpkin Ravioli with Herbal Butter Sauce

Pumpkin Ravioli with Herbal Butter Sauce

Use wonton wrappers to make this a doable weeknight dish

Love homemade ravioli, but can’t spare the time to make it? Well, we have a handy shortcut.

Wonton wrappers are a great substitute for homemade pasta when you’re making ravioli. Their taste and texture are similar, and you can buy them ready-to-use at most grocery stores.

This method is so convenient, you’ll be able to make ravioli for weeknight dinner. And it’s so tasty, you can serve it at weekend dinner parties, too.

Your grateful guests will think you labored all day in the kitchen. We won’t tell if you don’t.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Pumpkin and Pork Chili

Pumpkin and Pork Chili

Perfect for Halloween. And you can freeze the leftovers for Thanksgiving eve!

It’s pumpkin season in our part of the world. Chili season too.

So, hey, pumpkin chili. Pumpkin adds unique flavor (not to mention a rich, creamy texture), and it plays well with pork.

Sounds like a trick, we know. But it’s a real treat.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Curried Cauliflower and Chicken Soup

Curried Cauliflower and Chicken Soup

This Indian-style dish is comfort food at its finest

We admit it: As cooler weather moves into our part of the world, we turn into soupaholics.

And this hearty curried soup is becoming one of our faves. We made it with odds and ends we happened to have in the refrigerator (some leftover roast chicken and half a head of cauliflower that needed using).

Best of all, we put it together in about half an hour, so it made an easy weeknight dinner. And it tastes way better than anything you can buy in those red-and-white cans.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

The Journalist Cocktail

The Journalist Cocktail

Stop the presses! You’ll need one of these to survive election season

The political news lately has been . . . interesting. So let’s raise a glass to the journalists who insist on bringing it to us.

Journalists are reputed to be hard-living, hard-drinking folks – with a particular fondness for gin. So this drink is a fitting honor for them. And it has enough clout to soothe our nerves during the closing days of this presidential campaign.

So mix up a batch and remind yourself that the election will soon be over. Then no news will be good news.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Beet and Fennel Soup

Beet and Fennel Soup

A seductive hint of anise livens up this healthy starter

It’s autumn in our part of the world. Which means soup season! Time to ladle up this beet-and-fennel charmer.

The gorgeous color of beets and the anise undertones of fennel combine to make a perfect first course. This soup is full of flavor, but it’s not particularly caloric. So it will awaken your taste buds without filling you up.

You’ll even have room for dessert.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Cauliflower, Potato, and Pea Curry

Cauliflower, Potato, and Pea Curry

This vegan delight is a great way to eat your veggies

India knows how to cook vegetables. And one favorite flavor combo is cauliflower and potatoes. These two can be paired in hundreds of dishes. They blend particularly well with curry ingredients.

For this dish, we’ve added some green peas to the mix – making the combo even more healthy and colorful. This makes a great side for a vegetarian or vegan meal. But it’s equally at home with roast or grilled fowl or meat.

This is quick to make, too, so it’s perfect for weeknights. And no one will complain about having to finish their veggies.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Pasta with Zucchini and Mushrooms

Pasta with Zucchini and Mushrooms

Alfredo sauce and prosciutto make this rich dish sing

It’s still zucchini season in our part of the world, but cooler weather is strolling in. So we’re starting to enjoy richer dishes – like this one. It’s an all-time favorite of ours.

We particularly like to share this pasta dish with friends. Few can resist its creamy, cheesy goodness.

So don’t be surprised if your guests ask for the recipe. You have our permission to share it with them.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

The Boulevardier Cocktail

The Boulevardier Cocktail

This bourbon “Negroni” is the perfect autumn drink

Ever had a Boulevardier Cocktail? Right, we didn’t think so.

But you probably know the Negroni — that delectable combo of gin, Campari, and sweet vermouth. It’s become trendy during the past few years. Well, just swap bourbon for gin, and you have the Boulevardier.

This cocktail has a bittersweet flavor that makes it perfect as a pre-dinner drink. And bourbon gives everything a nice, warm glow – so it’s welcome as autumn approaches in our part of the world.

Time to haul out those sweaters and mix up a Boulevardier. You’ll need to take the chill off.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

The Paradise Cooler Cocktail

The Paradise Cooler Cocktail

Take leave of the heat with this Tiki refresher

It’s still hot in our part of the Northern Hemisphere. But this weekend we celebrate Labor Day in the US, which signals the end of summer. And that calls for a tall, cool drink.

Our friends down under are just moving into their warm season. Why not welcome it with one of these?

We can’t change the weather. But we can drink to it.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Chilled Beet and Cucumber Soup

Chilled Beet and Cucumber Soup

Beet the heat with this refreshing starter

Some dishes are better than others. But this soup is one of the best things we’ve made in years.

Who knew that the humble beet could be so dramatic?

This chilled soup makes a perfect first course for a summer dinner party.  Its delicious color (and flavor!) will have your guests demanding seconds.

So make extra.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The Missionary's Downfall Cocktail

The Missionary's Downfall cocktail

Fresh mint enlivens this Tiki “smoothie”

Want to join the green smoothie craze, but can't stand the taste? Have we got a drink for you!

Smoothies have been around since the electric blender became popular. And so have blender cocktails, like the Frozen Daiquiri. Or the Missionary’s Downfall.

OK, this drink isn’t as healthy as your typical green smoothie. But its color is striking. And it tastes sooo much better.

Besides, fresh mint is good for you. Isn’t it?

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Corn, Zucchini, and Bean Soup

Corn, Zucchini, and Bean Soup

Serve this Mexican-style soup hot or room temperature

It’s peak corn and zucchini in our part of the world. So why not combine them?

This soup is a perfect first course – or you can even make a meal out of it. And it tastes equally good hot or at room temperature. Which also makes it perfect for summer weather.

So no need to sweat it in the kitchen.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

The Vicious Virgin Cocktail

The Vicious Virgin Cocktail

Odd name, yes. But this Tiki drink offers great summertime flavor

Tiki drinks often sport unusual names – and this one may be one of the strangest. But don’t let that put you off.

The Vicious Virgin is slightly sweet, and definitely spicy. It makes a smooth sipper on a hot August afternoon. And it even works as a pre-dinner cocktail.

So serve this charmer at your next dinner party. The name alone will be a conversation starter.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Curried White Bean and Pasta Salad

Curried White Bean and Pasta Salad

Jalapeño peppers spice up this meatless side (or main)

So this year the we learned what a “heat dome” is (a high-pressure system that traps hot air underneath it, raising already hot summer temperatures well above average).

To cool down, we’ve been eating plenty of chilled salads for dinner. We love cold pasta salads in the summer, and adding white beans pumps up both flavor and nutrition. Perfect for Meatless Monday. Or any other day, for that matter.

Curry powder and jalapeño add even more zip to this dish. So it’s just the thing to take your mind off the heat.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Pusser's Painkiller Cocktail

Pusser's Painkiller Cocktail

AKA the Painkiller, this Tiki drink will soothe your soul

So it’s July, and both major US political parties are staging their presidential nominating conventions. It’s been a bizarre political season. Plus, the weather is miserably hot throughout much of the country. We need a drink.

Enter Pusser’s Painkiller. This refreshing, rum-based slow-sipper is a perfect summer cocktail.

So mix yourself one. Or two – you shouldn’t suffer through this alone.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Beet and Goat Cheese Salad with Mint

Beet and Goat Cheese Salad with Mint

Raspberry vinaigrette brightens this scrumptious starter

Beets have a thing for goat cheese. So let’s throw them together, we say.

Add some mint, drizzle on raspberry vinaigrette – and you’ve got a dish that sings with savor and flavor. One that’s easy to make, too. Great for stressless entertaining.

Which is perfect this time of year. Because on a hot summer evening, you don’t want dinner to turn into a goat rodeo.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

The Martinez Cocktail

The Martinez Cocktail

The Mother of all Martinis?

The Martini is the most iconic of cocktails. But it hasn’t always been the crisp, almost austere drink we know today.

Back in the 19th century, when the drink was growing up, it was much sweeter. And it probably was made with sweet vermouth (the red stuff). Which just happens to be a key component of the Martinez Cocktail – from which the Martini may have developed.

The Martinez has an old-fashioned vermouth-forward flavor that fits well with today’s craft cocktail scene. Although definitely sweeter than a Martini, it’s not cloying, so it works as a pre-dinner drink.

So mix up a true ancestral tipple. And tell your dinner party guests that you’re researching cocktail genealogy.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Rum Shrub Cocktail

The Rum Shrub Cocktail

For July 4th, serve a libation enjoyed by George Washington

Ben Franklin too. And no doubt many of our other founding fathers. That’s because shrubs – fruit preserved in a syrup of sugar and vinegar – were extremely popular in both America and Britain in those days.

Shrub syrup is even better if you add some strong spirits to the mix. But maybe you guessed that already.

You can use almost any booze, but we’re using rum. It was by far the most popular spirit in America around the time of the Revolutionary War. And the flavor of rum blends perfectly with shrub syrup.

Ready to fuel your patriotic fervor?

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Ice Cream Shrub Soda with Booze (or not)

Ice Cream Shrub Soda with Booze (or not)

The perfect summer dessert – for kids of all ages

Ice cream might be the ultimate summer dessert. You know all about that. But shrub? And why call this an ice cream soda rather than a float?

Patience, grasshopper. All will be revealed. For the moment, just think about cool, refreshing ice cream mixed with sweet but tangy shrub.

It’s great for the 4th of July. Especially since shrubs were extremely popular in colonial America. So this drink offers a taste of America’s culinary history.

Let the fireworks begin.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

The Bee's Knees Cocktail

The Bee's Knees Cocktail

Perfect for Father’s Day. Because Dad is, well, the bee’s knees.

In the US, Father’s Day is this Sunday, the 19th.  If you’re searching for an appropriate celebratory drink, look no further.

This cocktail is a charmer. Not to mention a terrific thirst quencher for the hot weather we’re having now in much of the country.

“Bee’s knees” was 1920s flapper slang for “the best.” And this drink – like Dad – is.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Berry Shrub (Nonalcoholic)

Berry Shrub (Nonalcoholic) title=

Use almost any berry or fruit to make this refreshing beverage

Shrubs were all the rage during colonial times, both here in the US and in Britain.

Shrub syrup is usually made from fruit preserved with vinegar and sugar. Berries are a popular choice of fruit – and they’re our favorite.

Shrub syrups tend to be used in drinks (with or without booze). Today we’re making a nonalcoholic shrub drink, so you can serve this one to the whole family. It’s easy to make too. Just add shrub syrup to soda water and you’ll have an old-timey beverage that’s better than commercial sodas.

So mix one up and quaff like Alexander Hamilton. No wig required.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

The White Lady Cocktail

The White Lady Cocktail

Perfect for toasting brides – past, present, and future

Wedding season is here. So you need a drink, right?

Fortunately, we have just the thing. The White Lady has a crisp, lively flavor that’s perfect for warm weather. It features a hint of sweetness, but not too much.

So it will whet your appetite for that overpriced reception dinner. And help you endure Uncle Harry. That’s our kind of white wedding.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Strawberry-Chipotle Soup with Mint

Strawberry-Chipotle Soup with Mint

Fresh OJ adds brightness to this chilled starter

Soup is cool. And in this case, chilled. Which is perfect for the warm weather we’re having in our part of the world.

We particularly like this dish because it allows us to use some of the fresh, ripe strawberries that are showing up in our market. Fruit is inherently sweet, of course. But add a bit of sourness (balsamic vinegar) and spicy heat (chipotle), and you have a savory starter.

Best of all, you can make this dish a day ahead. So any time you’re ready, soup is on.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Cauliflower Potato-Style Salad

Cauliflower Potato-Style Salad

Traditional flavor and savor without all the calories

Memorial Day is coming up soon here in the US. And that means the start of picnic and cookout season. Potato salad is a staple at these events. It’s easy to make, you can prepare it ahead of time, and most everyone loves it.

At least until they step on the scale the following morning. Because potatoes pack some calories.

So why not replace those potatoes with cauliflower? When steamed or blanched, cauliflower’s texture mimics that of boiled potatoes. Plus it combines well with onions, mayo, and the other ingredients in traditional potato salad. And cauliflower contains only about a third the calories of potatoes.

Best of all, cauliflower “potato” salad tastes really good. Who says there’s no (calorie) free lunch?

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Strawberry-Chipotle Salsa with Jalapeño

Strawberry-Chipotle Salsa with Jalapeño

Terrific as a dip, even better as a sauce

Fresh, ripe strawberries? We can’t resist. But what to do with all those cartons of luscious berries?

Sweets and desserts are a natural, of course. But strawberries like to go savory once in a while. Especially when they can flaunt a bit of heat, as they do here.

Serve this salsa with tortilla chips as an appetizer. Better yet, pair it with roasted or grilled meat, fish, or fowl. We particularly like to serve it with pork or duck, but it also works well with chicken or salmon.

We always knew strawberries could be saucy. But now they’re really hot.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

The Blue Moon Cocktail

The Blue Moon Cocktail

This classic drink has rare flavor

Ready to howl? We’ve got a cocktail for that.

May 21st marks the arrival of a blue moon (more on that later). So let’s celebrate! And what better way to toast the occasion than with the event’s namesake drink?

The aromatic Blue Moon Cocktail has just a hint of sweetness, but not too much. Which makes it a perfect pre-dinner libation.

So reach for the moon.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Cinco de Mayo Recipe Roundup

Hard-Shell Taco

Loads of tasty ideas for a Mexican-style feast

No new recipe this week. We have spring fever, and are playing hooky.

But we can’t let our readers go hungry. So we’ve collected some past recipes that are appropriate for Cinco de Mayo.

Get ready to fiesta like there’s no mañana.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Spicy Pork Vindaloo

Spicy Pork Vindaloo

Kinda, sorta like Indian chili con carne

Vindaloo has an incendiary reputation. But no worries if you’re heat-adverse — it’s easy to tame this dish by lightening up on the chile.

Which means you can share this vindaloo with even the most finicky dinner guests (and the flavor is so good, you’ll want to). You can also tell them that pork is really, truly authentic in this dish (more on that below). The vindaloos they’ve had in restaurants are copycats. They’ll feel honored to be at your table.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Indian Carrot Salad with Mustard Seeds

Indian Carrot Salad with Mustard Seeds

This spicy vegan dish doubles as a starter or side

Can vegan rock? We’ll let this dish answer for itself.

It’s colorful and easy to make. And it’s equally tasty at room temperature or chilled, so you can make it ahead of time.

And don’t tell your vegan friends, but it also goes great with meat or chicken (serve it with fried or roast chicken, grilled or barbecued meat or fish, or even tacos or a burger).

So feel free to use this dish as you like. We won’t say a word.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

The Bronx Cocktail

The Bronx Cocktail

Named after the Bronx Zoo, this charmer will bring out the beast in you

Spring is here, and we’re looking for a refreshing thirst-quencher. You know, something to restore us after a day of planting seeds and annuals.

What could be better than an OJ-tinged elixir? This one has soothing flavor – plus a hue that reminds us of the springtime sun.

The Bronx Cocktail is a smooth one. And not too heavy, so you can have two if you want. After all that planting, you deserve it.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Pasta with Cauliflower and Olives

Pasta with Cauliflower and Olives

Garlic and feta cheese liven up this easy main-course dish

Cauliflower and olives. Can they really get along?

Yup, turns out they’re a sensational together, particularly over pasta. Liven up their pairing with some garlic and feta, and a splash of quickly-made tomato sauce. Add a salad and maybe some crusty bread or garlic toast, and dinner is served.

This dish is easy enough to make on a busy weekday. But it’s tasty enough for guests too.

Two recipes in one. We like that.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Quick Lemon-Coconut Fudge

Quick Lemon-Coconut Fudge

Sure to please Easter bunnies everywhere!

One of our favorite flavors is lemon. And coconut. OK, that’s two flavors.

So why not combine them? That’s what we did in this quick and easy lemon-coconut fudge.

It’s perfect for Easter, which is this Sunday (March 27). This fudge comes together in minutes, and you can even shape the pieces into little Easter eggs if you like. Kids of all ages will be delighted.

You probably have all the ingredients for this recipe on hand, too, so you don’t need to make a special trip to the supermarket. Which will allow you to avoid all those commercial Easter candies. This year, your peeps won’t need Peeps.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Asparagus with Savory Whipped Cream

Asparagus with Savory Whipped Cream

Surprise your taste buds with a recipe from Alice B. Toklas

Whipped cream tends to stay offstage until dessert time, when the sweets come out. But why? We know that cream partners well with salt and pepper. And many savory foods depend on it (think creamy mashed potatoes or luscious quiche).

So we’ve decided to let whipped cream step out early, dressed in savory seasoning–and chaperoned by asparagus.

Asparagus is elegant by nature, of course. But whipped cream brings out its playful side.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Cheesy Grits with Jalapeño (or not)

Cheesy Grits with Jalapeño

This traditional dish is the perfect sidekick for breakfast, lunch, or dinner

Grits are all-American. That’s because they’re made from corn (maize), a key crop of the New World.

Grits are traditional in the southern states of the US, where they often serve as a breakfast side dish. In recent years, though, they’ve been getting more love in the rest of the country. And not just for breakfast—we often see them served at dinner, where they make a perfect bed for rich meat or seafood dishes.

We like to add jalapeño for a bit of spice, though you can omit this ingredient if you want something less incendiary. But don’t skip the cheese—it adds creamy richness.

With or without jalapeño, these cheesy grits will fire up your taste buds.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

The Hearn's Cocktail

The Hearn's Cocktail

Irish whiskey makes this drink perfect for St. Pat’s Day

St. Patrick’s Day is coming soon. So let’s have a drink!

We can suggest the perfect tipple: The Hearn’s Cocktail, born at the original Waldorf Astoria hotel bar in New York City.

New York was once home to thousands of Irish immigrants, so NYC bartenders knew how to handle Irish whiskey.

Let’s all benefit from their knowledge, and get our Irish on.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Warm Lentil Salad with Bacon

Warm Lentil Salad with Bacon

Top this bistro-style dish with poached egg for extra savor

Winter is waning in our part of the world, though spring is still snoozing. So warm salads, no?

This warm lentil salad is perfect for the season. It’s flavorful and filling without being too heavy. And it’s a double-duty dish. We like to serve it as a main course, but it could also be a starter.

You might say it’s two recipes in one. Perfect for in-between weather.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Vegan Mulligatawny Soup with Cabbage

Vegan Mulligatawny Soup with Cabbage

Chickpeas add depth to this spicy Indian-style soup

Happy World Cabbage Day!

OK, it’s not the best-known holiday. But we’ll take any chance to celebrate. So let’s get cruciferous.

Cabbage isn’t particularly traditional in mulligatawny soup. But we’d like to change that, because cabbage and Indian spices taste like they were made for each other. Our version of M-soup is also vegan and gluten free, so it will suit almost any diet. And it’s versatile: This soup makes a spicy starter, but is hearty enough to serve as a main.

Best of all, the flavor is wonderful. Once you taste this soup, you’ll be circling World Cabbage Day on the calendar. In red.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Duck, Lentil, and Kale Soup

Duck, Lentil, and Kale Soup

A healthy, flavorful way to use leftover duck

Duck (whether roasted or pan seared) is seriously good stuff. So if you find yourself with leftovers, you don’t want to waste them.

And because duck has such deep flavor, even a little goes a long way. Which makes it perfect for soup.

Especially with lentils—they’re magic when combined with duck. Add some kale, and you have an exceptionally nutritious (and tasty) dish.

Best of all? Making this dish is easy as, well, duck soup.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

The Washington Cocktail

The Washington Cocktail

A taste of American history

Presidential primary season has begun here in the US. So let’s kick it off with a Washington Cocktail, in honor of our first president.

This spritely drink combines dry vermouth with brandy (or cognac). It’s perfect before dinner. And it has a fairly low alcohol quotient, so it won’t slow you down if you need to make a quick escape from invading redcoats. 

Admittedly, no one knows for sure whether this cocktail was named after George Washington. It could have been named for the city of Washington, DC. Or some other Washington altogether.

But we mustn’t let facts get in the way. It’s political season, after all.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Slow Cooker BBQ Pulled Pork

Slow Cooker BBQ Pulled Pork

Easy recipe, succulent flavor

Mmmm, barbecue. Especially pulled pork. We can’t resist.

But this time of the year, we’re not really into hanging around outside in the cold and snow tending a smoker. We’d rather stay inside and let a slow cooker do its magic.

And “magic” is the word for this easy slow-cooker pulled pork. Just prep the meat, put it in the slow cooker, and forget about it. Then revel in deliciousness.

This recipe feeds a crowd, so it’s perfect for a Super Bowl party. And the dish is so good, you won’t even care who wins the game. No matter how it turns out, you’ll score big with your guests.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Slow Cooker Homestyle Chili

Slow Cooker Homestyle Chili

Easy—and just like mom used to make

There’s nothing like tucking into a big bowl of chili. It’s the best way we know to tame the winter cold.

And with football playoffs here, you can eat it while watching the game. Plus, this easy dish is a crowd pleaser, so it’s ideal for a Super Bowl party.

Speaking of easy, chili might be the best slow cooker dish ever. You just need to do some quick prep work, then let the cooker do its magic. Unattended. The chili will be ready when you are—no last-minute timing required.

So it’s perfect for entertaining. Or Saturday night supper after all those weekend chores.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Cabbage, Kielbasa, and Black-Eyed Pea Soup

Cabbage, Kielbasa, and Black-Eyed Pea Soup

This healthy and easy soup will warm you up

Winter has taken hold in our part of the world. So naturally our thoughts turn to soup.

As they generally do this time of year. After all the holiday goodies we pigged out on enjoyed, we’re looking for healthier dishes (especially ones that warm us up). This easy-to-make soup fits the bill perfectly.

So hit us with your best stuff, winter. We’re prepared!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

The Leap Year Cocktail

The Leap Year Cocktail

A smooth charmer from a legendary mixologist

We love to toast special occasions. Birthdays. Anniversaries. Fridays. We’ll drink to them all.

Including leap year. And since that comes around just once every four years, it calls for a special cocktail, don’t you think?

Lucky for us, bartender extraordinaire Harry Craddock felt the same way. So in 1928, he invented the Leap Year Cocktail (at London’s Savoy Hotel, where he was working at the time). His creation is a slightly sweet—but totally delectable—Martini-like drink. 

Once you taste it, you probably won’t wait 4 years to have another.