scratch pie crust

This recipe elicits all the feels from my childhood. My grandmother always mysteriously had “one more” scratch made crust in her freezer to make a fresh pie when my family would come for unannounced visits to their farm. It is simple and straightforward and uses ingredients readily available anywhere.   Serves: one deep dish 9″…

meat balls

To my friend Carol who taught me how to make Sicilian pasta sauce again I say thank you for also schooling me on her meatballs. I have adapted the recipe to ingredients readily available where ever I may be. These are sure to please any appetite. I often make them in large batches and use…

bread sticks

My family loves a good bowl of pasta. These breadsticks are crusty on the outside and soft on the inside, perfect for lapping up the pasta sauce left in the bottom of the bowl. Serves: 8 large breadsticks, 8 guests Tools: mixing bowl baking pan baking mat measuring cups Ingredients: .25 oz or 1 1/2…

thai stir fry

I spent a summer in Thailand and came away with a love for the people and their cuisine. I took a cooking class there and this dish has been a staple in my menu ever since. It is as beautiful in presentation as it is healthy. Serves: 4-6 guests Tools: wok chef’s knife cutting board…

homemade pizza

Homemade pizza loaded with veggies is a crowd-pleaser, family-favorite and kid-friendly. Nearly every week this is requested in the meal plan. Take the basic pizza as your foundation and build on it what you like. Serves: 2 large rectangular pizzas if you use the pizza crust & pizza sauce recipes Tools:  chef’s knife cutting board…

autumn in a pot

I love the smell of Autumn; unfortunately living in a crowded city perks the senses to pollution above all else. So when I am expecting company or just missing my mid-western Fall, I compile these ingredients and let them simmer away on the stovetop filling our flat with the senses of changing seasons. Serves: one…

pizza sauce

The jarred pizza sauces in our country have a funky aftertaste, so one day I embarked on my own and just added a little of this and a palmful of that and came up with a recipe for pizza sauce. I will never go back. It can be made ahead and frozen in pizza-sized batches….

candied carrots

One of my sister’s favorite side dishes growing up was candied carrots. I almost forgot about this sweet and savory side until I was stuck on a dinner menu and only had carrots in the cupboard. Sometimes necessity begets the best ideas. The response from the family was to keep it coming back. Serves: 4-6…

garlic mashed potatoes

The perfect side for just about any meat, garlic mashed potatoes are lite on both effort and time. It’s a win win for both the chef and the guests. Serves: 1 potato per guest ~ make as much as you like Tools: stock pot chef’s knife hand blender Ingredients: 6 medium potatoes – washed, peeled…

chicken pot pie

Oh my chicken pot pie. This one is at the top of our family fav list. I tore this recipe out of a Food Network Magazine years ago and have carried it with us wherever we have lived. I have adapted it to use staple ingredients I love and require basic kitchen tools. This recipe…

mint water

With a hint of mint this drink will refresh you all summer long. Mint grows wild outside our flat making this delightfully convenient and it’s especially pretty for hosting. Serves: as many as you have jars to fill Tools: glass jars (reuse glass juice or milk bottles, thoroughly washed and dried) Ingredients: fresh picked mint…

cereal treats

Something about this treat brings back all the feels of childhood. So simple to whip up, cereal treats are perfect for a crowd and for kids. Serves : 10 guests, there will be seconds if you’re lucky. Tools: 1 9×13 deep glass baking dish large plastic mixing bowl spatula small sauce pot medium glass bowl…