We have a tradition of taking a small trip every memorial day weekend, making the most out a 3-day weekend. This year we decided to head south, to Floyd and Grayson county, for a country escape. While this part of Virginia is absolutely gorgeous with its windy country roads rising through the blue ridge highlands, we came to connect to Ryan’s southern roots, where his beloved grandmother, Nan grew up.
As you can probably tell from my blog posts, I have been on an Italian kick lately. But lets be real…. I tend to always love cooking italian inspired dishes. One of our all time favorite dishes is chicken parmesan and the hubs is always asking me to make it. The key to good chicken parm is the sauce. While the perfect breading and the right amount of fresh mozzarella is essential, the sauce is what sets apart standard chicken parm from the best chicken parm of your life. The sauce in this recipe can be used as marinara sauce for pasta as well or just for dipping fresh crusty bread into it. it is really versatile and so damn easy it should be illegal.
Beets and goat cheese are a new love, something I would have never touched ten years ago, making me feel like a true grown up. I recently had both of these together for the first time at a favorite restaurant and I knew I had to combine them into a new recipe at home. This beet and goat cheese ravioli dish is really impressive and fairly easy but make sure you are not in a rush when making these bad boys. Pour yourself a glass of wine and enjoy the beauty of making your own filled pasta. This recipe is as delicious as it is impressive. Invite those snooty friends (who you have been dying to finally one up) over for dinner and wow them with these. Or just your besties who are the only one who truly deserve something this lovely…….. or your mom.
We have recently started dabbling in zucchini noodle making and cooking. I finally gave in and ordered a vegetable spiralizer off of amazon and its been the best kitchen purchase that I’ve made in a long time. I love getting my pasta fix without the carbs of pasta. I had been using spaghetti squash as a pasta substitute but the hubs did not not like that too much….. But I am happy to report that this recipe, zucchini noodles with kale, walnuts and garlic bread crumbs are husband approved. If you don’t have a handy vegetable spiralizer, you can also use your standard vegetable to make pappardelle like zucchini pasta.
One of our favorite weekend rituals is making a batch of banana pancakes with some thick cut bacon and a strong cup of joe. We usually enjoy these pancakes during leisurely mornings while we plan out our weekend. Our love affair with banana pancakes began years ago on Hermosa Beach in Costa Rica and I have been perfecting this recipe ever since. I must warn you that you may become addicted to these pancakes and no other pancakes will do after having these.
My new obsession this winter has been potato leek soup and I seriously cant get enough of it. I’ve even started hoarding it…. well what I mean is I have been making double batches and freezing it so I never have to go long without my potato leek fix. I decided to get a little crazy the other night and threw in sweet potatoes and it was the best yet. This is a great main dish paired with some fresh crusty bread, a salad…….. and with wine of course.
So as some of you may know, I am not a sweet tooth. I will take french fries over chocolate any day of the week. But these bad boys turn me into a sweet tooth and I literally have zero willpower around them. This recipe is from my mother in law, who is a wonderful baker and cook, desserts are her specialty! They are insanely good… ok enough talking about them you just have to try them for yourself!
So with Thanksgiving just a few days away I decided it was time to share my favorite mashed potatoes recipe with all of you. Let me tell you that I take my potatoes very seriously hailing from a very loud and proud Irish family. So if you have ever underestimated the power of a well seasoned and well mashed tater this is the recipe for you. I swear you will want to eat the whole bowl and not share it with a soul which it actually the complete opposite of the entire idea of Thanksgiving….. but seriously they are that good.
The hubs and I love Mexican food or really any Latin American cuisine. I equate that my love for Mexican food comes from being born in Arizona and only a few hours drive from the Mexican border. Mexican dishes are one of my favorite things to cook, since moving to the DC area I have trouble finding Mexican food the satisfies my cravings….. so I cook it myself. I blame my disappointment in east coast Mexican cuisine on growing up in Colorado where phenomenal hole in the wall Mexican food joints are as common as Starbucks. Ryan and I were craving Mexican the other night so we decided to whip up some shrimp fajitas since we had all of the ingredients in the fridge. I also made my Mexican quinoa which is a staple in our house as a healthier substitute to Mexican rice. Hope this dish makes you feel like your finally on that Mexican beach vacation sipping a big ole margarita!
Thanksgiving is almost here and we look forward to all the friends and family gatherings in the upcoming weeks. Here are some things Molly and I are preparing to take to all that are so gracious to host us this season! Continue Reading…