Virginia Willis Tweeted Me

Georgia native Virginia Willis is an esteemed French-trained chef, renowned food author, and culinary educator of her “refined Southern” cuisine. A zealous fan, I followed Virginia on Twitter and to my surprise, she followed me back. When I realized she does this for all fans, I tweeted, “One of my Southern idols @VirginiaWillis followed me back, but she’s so hospitable, she follows EVERYone back.” To my great delight, she responded, “Oh now you just hush, Silly Goose. I liked your twitter handle!” Ladies and gents, I flew straight to [... more]

First, You Make a Roux

This delectable-looking appetizer caught my eye on Pinterest and when I realized it was from fellow Mississippian and food blogger Julie May at Menu Musings, I liked it even more. I seem to be a slave to seafood recipes, and the dishes themselves, of course. This gem for Louisiana Crab Claws Bordelaise fit my entertaining requirement of easy preparation with big-bang presentation.  What guest wouldn’t ooh and aah over these Cajun claws? Julie warns that you’ll want to “sop up” the buttery sauce goodness with a crusty piece of bread. And [... more]

Tequila and Lime Time

My mouth waters at just the name of this dish, “Tequila and Lime Marinated Steak.” As you line up the ingredients, you may ask yourself if you’re cooking or serving drinks. I personally would do both. After combining the tequila, lime juice, salt, and spices for marinating the steaks, celebrate with an icy cold margarita. Might as well make a whole batch because you’re going to want to share these perfectly marinated steaks with your friends. Let the party begin! Photo Source: The Boys Club

Say CHEESE!

Ricotta, mozzarella, Asiago, and Parmesan. OMG. A heavenly blend of cheeses adorn this Four Cheese Caprese Pizza. But a Caprese dish wouldn’t be complete without fresh tomatoes bursting with flavor and glorious basil. Hold on—I’m not done yet. A balsamic reduction drizzled over the top of this cheesy pie brings a tangy sweetness to your awaiting taste buds. Now…what is missing? A full-bodied cabernet and a Mediterranean sunset. Photo Source: Cooking Classy

Comfort Food at Its Best

What do you crave on a brisk, wintery night? How about something warm and steamy that simply screams comfort food! This recipe for French Beef Stew with Red Wine is just the fix for your cold winter itch. Tender and juicy beef stew with red wine atop homemade, creamy garlic potatoes warms your body (and your soul) when the temps drop outside. As a lover of wine, olives, and delectable beef, I revel in the fact that there are still a few weeks of winter left to [... more]

Second Act

Take advantage of what’s in your fridge to make a from-scratch pizza that’s easy and irresistible. This recipe for Pulled Pork Pizza with Maple Leeks, Roasted Garlic and Aged Cheddar calls for leftover pork. Honey mixed into the dough adds a hint of sweetness to the crust, and layers of Fontina cheese, leeks, roasted garlic, and cheddar cheese create a pizza packed with flavor. Bake until brown and bubbly, and drizzle with BBQ sauce. Photo Source: How Sweet It Is

South of the Border

Back in my college days, without going into TOO much detail, my fellow girlfriends and I would make a point to grab Mexican food at least once a week. Who doesn’t love Mexican, right? For years, I was convinced I would never be able to make any type of Tex-Mex dish and actually enjoy it until I stumbled upon these Fire Roasted Shrimp Enchiladas smothered in a creamy jalapeno sauce. Is your mouth watering yet because I am tempted to hop off of this computer and whip [... more]

Sunday Morning Sweetness

Sometimes certain foods evoke specific memories. When I saw the image of the Smoked Paprika Red Potatoes and Egg Bake, I recalled lazy Sunday morning meals. The well-cracked egg reminds me of my husband standing in the kitchen, always trying to make the perfect egg. We are a tough crowd, too. If the yolk is broken, someone is in big trouble. In this recipe, simple ingredients—eggs, potatoes, onions, garlic, smoked paprika, heavy cream—all come together to create a memorable family breakfast. Photo Source: Naturally Ella

Civilized Bacon

Though my recipe addiction is lifelong and bona fide, my head isn’t turned by every fondue, fricassee, or frittata. When it comes to entertaining, any recipe that makes my menu usually has to meet certain criteria: high drama, low effort, and a minimum of ingredients. In my mind, guests break into applause at the mere sight of each dish prepared, certain I’ve slaved for days to achieve such culinary grandeur. Despite its modest name, this Bacon-Wrapped Scallops recipe delivers the “wow” factor in presentation and taste with only a handful of [... more]

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