Holiday Cocktails & A Sparkly Mini Cooper Giveaway

In the hustle and bustle of the holidays, we are constantly looking for ways to add effortless sparkle to the table. Throughout the season, we want to have the freedom to invite a few neighbors or friends over on a whim and be ready to quickly throw out a few delicious nibbles and fun cocktails. We stock our refrigerators with special cheeses, our pantry with a variety of crackers and our bars with a couple of bottles of bubbly. Freixenet ("fresh-eh-net") is a great, affordable holiday bubbly to keep around. Not only does the … [Read more...]

Rose Romano’s Italian Peppers

It's been a week of feasting, for sure! It's the kind of week where calorie counting is put on pause and you just enjoy each meal as a gift. This week I've enjoyed my husband's rich, slow roasted lamb, my daughter's hand rolled sugar cookies, my cousin's first ever roasted turkey, a friend's super soaked rum cake and of course...homemade cinnamon buns. I have received gourmet food toys, such as dark chocolate with pink pepper and citrus notes, tarragon dijon kale crunch and chipotle spice sipping chocolate. Friends and family … [Read more...]

Friends & Farms

Living in Baltimore City, we are surrounded by the urban jungle. The rolling farmlands, bursting with fresh produce are about a 1/2 hour drive outside the city limits. In the past decade or so, the Farmer's Markets, CSA's and at home produce delivery services, like Friends & Farms, have been exploding. There are so many options! I've looked at a few at-home delivery service sites that promise to deliver fresh farm products right to your door. I have to admit, I've never clicked the button to commit. Seeing as we have 7 … [Read more...]

Woodberry Kitchen

If you ever visit Baltimore, or if you live in Baltimore and you've never visited Woodberry must! Woodberry is unique to the Baltimore food scene. Owners Spike and Amy have built a farm to table food culture right in the heart of our city. Their commitment to stay local is changing the way Baltimore sees it's resources. We always knew we had Eastern Shore Crabs. I think crab cakes are on every menu in Baltimore. Devon and I use to joke, that every menu in Baltimore had variations of the exact same offerings. Years … [Read more...]

Moroccan Chicken in the GE Advantium

I made this recipe in my GE Profile™ Advantium® oven the other day.  I think it was around 5 pm and I realized I hadn't planned a thing for dinner. I'd like to say this was not normal, but with five kids, homeschooling 3 of them, carpooling the other 2, gymnastics, baseball, etc...dinner tends to get away from me. So, this day was like most. I knew I was going to make chicken "something". When 5 pm rolled around, I began to flip through recipes and see what ingredients I had on hand to make a quick meal. Since the … [Read more...]

Advantium Bakes Taco Meatloaf

A couple of weeks ago, we had a new member join our family...GE Profile™ Advantium® oven. I have to admit, once it was installed, it was a little intimidating. It promised to be a microwave, European convection oven, warming oven and Speedcook oven all in one.  Not even the other members of my family can deliver all those promises in one.  I was wondering if the Advantium would be a good fit. We started testing her out by simply heating up food in the microwave.  That's a language our family of 7 fully understands.  My kids … [Read more...]

Breville to the Rescue…Once Again!

My husband popped in, mid-day, to grab his forgotten lunch and to give me a kiss.  Okay, truth be told, I think he wanted another shot of espresso.  So, he hit the grinder button and...nothing.  It didn't work.  He cleared out the grinds, checked the cord and still...nothing.  "You have got to be kidding!" he said.  "We've had this grinder (Cuisinart) for less than a year." He gave me a kiss, grabbed his lunch and headed back to work.  I hopped in my 'burban and went to the mall.  I walked straight in to Williams and … [Read more...]


Honestly, I didn’t know what Cherimoyas were a week ago. The Minneapolis Tribune did a tiny “meet and greet” this fruit article. So, I thought it would be the perfect “food toy” (see our definition of a food toy at the end of this post) purchase. At $9.99 a pound, it wouldn’t be my everyday go-to fruit! But, for “the blog” I went to hunt them out. Two grocery stores later, I found them high on a shelf at Byerly’s. When I went to pay for them, nobody knew what they were and it sent managers and check- out people a flutter as to … [Read more...]

Chantrelle Risotto and Food Toys

I was exposed at a young age to mushrooms.  My mom loved them, I hated them.  (Of course, looking back, she prepared only canned, slimy, rubbery mushrooms.)  When I married an aspiring chef, he was bound and determined to convert me.  I thought it was impossible.  I can't remember the exact dish...or the type of mushroom...probably at that point, portobellos were the mushroom of choice.  All I know is, I was a convert! I love mushrooms of any shape and size!  But, one of my favorites is chanterelles.  If you've never cooked … [Read more...]

Inspired at the Food Toy* Museum

After our incredible meal at Momofuku, we geared up...hats, gloves, coats...and braced ourselves for the crisp, frigid New York air.  We were back on the streets with one destination in mind.  Dean and Deluca!  The Food Toy* Museum!  The moment I walked in, all of my senses took over!  Visually, I didn't know where to rest my eyes.  I found myself walking up to a display of fruit and lingering, like I did when I first cast my eyes on The Birth of Venus in Florence.  The textures, vibrant colors and brilliance were breath taking!  … [Read more...]