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Showing posts from May, 2017

The Best Blueberry Pie

Blueberry pie has been one of my all-time favorite desserts.  As pies go, blueberry battles for top billing with apple and lemon meringue.  They each served as stand-ins for my birthday cake when I was a kid.  I've always preferred pie over cake. Have you made a pie lately?  Any time of year is the right time to make a pie, but spring and summer are the best for all the beautiful fruits and berries that are available.  If making pie crust gives you fits, try my recipe for food processor pie crust .  It's easy as pie! How to Make the Best Blueberry Pie (This post contains affiliate links that support the costs of publishing this blog.) A Classic Blueberry Pie is Perfect for Summer Blueberry pie can be a challenge when you are making it at home because thickening the filling's juice with the right mix can be a guessing game.  I've started using Clearjel in my blueberry pie filling to take out the guesswork.  The resulting filling holds together without bein

Legendary Blueberry Muffins

In New England, blueberry muffins from Jordan Marsh, one of our iconic department stores, were legendary. Jordan Marsh was absorbed by Macy's in 1996, but the blueberry muffin recipe lives on. This week I bought some beautiful, plump blueberries at the grocery store.  They were perfect for these Jordan Marsh Copycat Blueberry Muffins. My Copycat Jordan Marsh Blueberry Muffins (This post contains affiliate links that compensate me when you buy.) Copycat Jordan Marsh Blueberry Muffins You can find variations of the Jordan Marsh blueberry muffin recipe from several sites on the Internet. They all have two things in common, an abundance of fresh blueberries and plenty of sugar.  I love lots of blueberries in my muffins but prefer a little less sugar.  I have cut the amount of sugar in my copycat version to 3/4 cup, which I find to be plenty sweet enough. I think you'll like a couple of additions as well.  I added the zest of one lemon because I think it brightens and e

How to Plan a Summer Barbecue

The weather is finally warming up.  You've decided to host a summer barbecue for family and friends. Good for you!  Are you wondering just what you were thinking?  Is hosting anxiety setting in?  No need for panic.  Here is a summer BBQ menu that is easy to execute with a level head and some thoughtful planning. I've also prepared your road-map for getting things done without stress.  You don't want to be frazzled when your guests arrive!  This guide will help you to get organized and prepare for your party with a five-day schedule.  You can even choose to use your oven instead of your grill for most of the cooking and still get the flavor you want for your BBQ. How to Plan a Fun, Stress-Free Summer BBQ Don't be afraid to ask family members for help.  As the saying goes, "Many hands make light work." Most people would love to bring a dish.   Just be sure to be specific when you ask someone to bring a dish. This menu and plan assume you will do a

Easy Stovetop Shrimp and Pasta

Frozen shrimp is always on hand in my freezer because it is the perfect protein to reach for when you want a quick and easy dinner that seems a little special. This Stovetop Shrimp and Pasta dish is just one of the quick, easy, and special dinners. For this stove-top shrimp and pasta dinner, I used frozen, uncooked, cleaned, and shelled shrimp.  All the prep I needed to do was count the number of shrimp to defrost. A Quick, Easy, Delicious Weeknight Dinner  This dish is E-A-S-Y. Really, friends, I promise.  This meal is so easy you won't believe it. It is so easy you could even cook it on a hot plate! You can use any size shrimp you prefer. I usually buy the 16-20 or the 21-25 sizes of shrimp whenever they are on sale. If you can get them cleaned and shelled, even better.  That will cut down the amount of prep work you will need to do, making this dish even easier for a weeknight meal. As you read the recipe you'll see that you only cook your pasta

How to Kill Ants in Your Home

The ants have started their annual ritual of torturing me. It seems that as soon as the spring showers come, the ants show up in my house. This is one of the ways I battle them. An Effective, Homemade Ant Bait Do you have to do battle with ants in your home?  Do you feel as frustrated as I do when facing this yearly ritual?  The ants are back.  Yes, I'm very unhappy to report that the annual ant battle is underway in my home.   I have ants coming out of the woodwork. Literally, ants are coming out of the woodwork!  I saw a few little ants gathering around a speck on the floor.  When there is one, there are many.  Oh no! Ant Sighting! Let the battle begin!  What concerns me most about the battle of the ants is the questionable safety of the arsenal of weapons we have at our disposal.  I've used ant sprays, ant traps, and exterminators.  None of them have been particularly successful.  I am also uncomfortable about frequent applications of insecticides and potential

Cinnamon Streusel Sour Cream Coffee Cake

Everyone needs a good coffee cake recipe.  This is mine.   This Sour Cream Streusel Coffee Cake is a quick and easy coffee cake recipe for you to whip up in the morning to serve as a sweet addition to your breakfast or brunch.  It's the traditional kind of cake I picture when I hear someone say, "coffee cake". Cinnamon Streusel Sour Cream Coffee Cake  Traditional Streusel Coffee Cake Reasons You Will Love Cinnamon Streusel Sour Cream Coffee Cake The recipe makes nine generous servings.  You'll want to make this coffee cake in a 9x9 inch cake pan.  That way you can cut the cake into generous three-inch square portions.  No one wants a skimpy serving of coffee cake!   The cake is tender, with just the right amount of sweetness.  The streusel filling and topping are made with light brown sugar, which adds a little deeper flavor than you'll get with granulated sugar.   Walnuts add flavor and texture. Use finely chopped walnuts in the streusel for added texture.

The One Seasoning Mix I Can't Live Without

My love for this Southwest Seasoning Mix began long ago with a recipe that paired a roasted chicken that was rubbed with the seasoning mix and chipotle barbecue sauce .  I couldn't get enough of that yummy combination.  I made up a huge batch of the Southwest Seasoning Mix and a vat of the chipotle barbecue sauce and soon we were eating one or the other, or both several times a month. That happens frequently around here.  I get on a kick and my family comes along for the ride. Kick Up Your Dinners with My Southwest Seasoning Mix The truth is, this Southwest Seasoning Mix is always on hand in my kitchen.  I use it on all kinds of meats and seafood.  Vegetables go from bland to heavenly with just a sprinkle or two. You must make this seasoning mix!  You'll see that the recipe for the mix is intentionally vague.  It's the ratio of the ingredients that is important.  You can make a big batch or a small batch.  For example, if your "one part" equals 1/4 cup,