Making Restaurant Quality Stocks

The Foundation of Great Sauces Could you imagine having to create a singular sauce with singular ingredients for every dish on the menu? Long ago, European chefs realized that it was a much more efficient way to run a kitchen to have sauce components on hand that could be altered or made into a sauce […]

The post Making Restaurant Quality Stocks appeared first on The Reluctant Gourmet.

Original source:

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

These award-winning cookies will make you an addict. Lemon Crinkle Cookies are chewy, soft, and bursting with hints of lemon in every bite!

I made these Lemon Crinkle Cookies for a recipe contest and won! Approved by all who taste them, these lemon cookies are soft, but still slightly crunchy, tart, but still really sweet. I bet you have all the ingredients too. Easy to make, made with simple ingredients, and done in 30 minutes, this recipe is made for the novice chef.

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

Lemon Lover

I think we all can agree that I am a lemon freak. I love love love lemon ridiculously. It’s in the genes. My Mom is the same way. Lemon and I are buddies, especially when it comes to desserts– my thighs can prove it. I have made a Lemon Cream Pie that’s to die for. Blueberry Lemon Coffee Cake Muffins? Oh, mama.

But these cookies……ohmygoodgravy–they caught me at a moment of weakness and I ate them up. Fresh out of the oven, they taste like lemon bars. But they are still super good a day or two later. Let me give you some advice. Run, don’t walk to your kitchen. Make these cookies today if you can.

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

As said above, Lemon Crinkle Cookies use simple, everyday ingredients to make the most delicious lemony treat. You should have most if not all of these ingredients already on hand.

  • Butter – use real butter, nor margarine for these cookies. Some readers have had problems making these and it’s because they used margarine.
  • Granulated Sugar – to sweeten.
  • Vanilla Extract – this is a super nice complimenting flavor to the lemon.
  • Egg – for structure and texture.
  • Lemon Zest – a lot of commenters said that they’d prefer more lemon flavor, so feel free to add in more zest.
  • Fresh Lemon Juice – you can use store-bought lemon juice if you like. It’s just not as fresh.
  • Salt – balances out the sweet and sour.
  • Baking Powder and Baking Soda – this gives the cookies their rise and texture.
  • Flour – this fills the cookie out and gives them some structure.
  • Powdered Sugar – rolling the dough in powdered sugar puts the crinkle onto these lemon cookies.

Lemon Cookie Dough

How to Make Lemon Crinkle Cookies

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease light colored baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray and set aside. Or cover with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Whip in vanilla, egg, lemon zest and juice. Scrape sides and mix again.
  3. Stir in flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder slowly until just combined. Scrape sides of the bowl and mix again briefly.
  4. Pour powdered sugar onto a large plate. Roll a heaping teaspoon of dough into a ball and roll in powdered sugar. Place on the baking sheet and repeat with remaining dough.
  5. Bake for 9-11 minutes or until bottoms begin to barely brown and cookies look matte {not melty or shiny}. Remove from oven and cool lemon crinkle cookies about 3 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
*If using a nonstick darker baking tray, reduce baking time by about 2 minutes.
Lauren’s Latest original recipe! You saw it here first, folks!!

Cookie Dough

My cookies won’t spread!

A lot of you have mentioned to me that these cookies don’t spread. This problem happens because there is too much flour in your cookie dough!

Fluff up your flour, spoon it into your measuring cup and then level the top. That is the correct way to measure flour and how I measured it for this recipe. So be careful when measuring and you’ll have perfect lemon crinkle cookies.

My cookies spread too much!

A common problem when making these Lemon Crinkle Cookies is that they flatten out way too much! Why?


This recipe calls for softened butter, not melted butter. The best way to get softened butter is to plan ahead. A couple of hours before you make these cookies set 1/2 cup of butter on the counter. As it sits there is will soften.

But if you are in a pinch you can microwave butter to soften it instead. Microwave in 5-second intervals rotating your cube of butter each time. Please please please use caution when softening this way. It can easily go from solid to melted in seconds! And in turn, your cookies will spread way too much.

Lemon Cookies rolled in powdered sugar

My cookie dough is sticky!

If you already used melted butter instead of softened butter, and your lemon crinkle cookie dough is sticky don’t worry! You have two options to fix this.

Pop your dough in the fridge for 30 minutes to solidify the dough a bit.


Add in small amounts of flour until your cookie dough comes together better. Definitely use my photo of the cookie dough above to base your cookie dough off of.

Freeze These Cookies

Luckily these cookies freeze super well. This is a great way to make Lemon Crinkle Cookies ahead of time.

To freeze, simply follow the directions, including rolling the dough in powdered sugar. Don’t bake! Instead flash-freeze on a parchment paper-lined plate. After an hour, stick all the dough balls in a freezer-safe bag. You should be able to keep these in the freezer for about 2 months before you want to use them.

To bake, put them directly on the cookie sheet and pop them in your preheated oven. Sometimes the cookies need an extra minute or 2 to bake correctly as well so check them often!

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

Variations of Lemon Crinkle Cookies

This post was originally posted in 2011! Since then I’ve received over 300 comments about how amazing these lemon cookies are. In some of these comments, I’ve noticed people putting their own spin on things, which I love! You are making these cookies for you, your family and friends so make it your way! I thought I’d share some of my favorite renditions of Lemon Crinkle Cookies below.

White Chocolate Chips. Add some creamy chocolatey-ness to your lemon crinkle cookies by mixing in white chocolate chips. Yum!

Gluten-Free. Yes, you can make these cookies gluten-free. Simply replace regular flour with your favorite, gluten-free flour blend (same amount needed). So easy, so thank you faithful and adventurous readers who did the experimenting for us.

Glaze. Either top with a simple vanilla glaze or with a lemon glaze. Mix together milk, powdered sugar and your choice of flavoring.

Different Citrus.  You can use an entirely different citrus to make these cookies. Think of the possibilities. Lime, Orange, or Grapefruit flavored crinkle cookies.

More Cookie Recipes to Try!

  • Glazed Lemon Cookies
  • Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies with Zucchini
  • Orange Cranberry Crinkle Cookies
  • Chewy Glazed Lemon Sugar Cookies
  • Lemon Sour Cream Sugar Cookies

Lemon Crinkle Cookies

These award-winning cookies will make you an addict. Lemon Crinkle Cookies are chewy, soft, and bursting with hints of lemon in every bite!

  • ½ cups butter (softened)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoons salt
  • ¼ teaspoons baking powder
  • ⅛ teaspoons baking soda
  • 1-½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cups powdered sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease light colored baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray and set aside. Or cover with parchment paper.

  2. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Whip in vanilla, egg, lemon zest and juice. Scrape sides and mix again.

  3. Stir in flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder slowly until just combined. Scrape sides of the bowl and mix again briefly.

  4. Pour powdered sugar onto a large plate. Roll a heaping teaspoon of dough into a ball and roll in powdered sugar. Place on the baking sheet and repeat with remaining dough.

  5. Bake for 9-11 minutes or until bottoms begin to barely brown and cookies look matte {not melty or shiny}. Remove from oven and cool cookies about 3 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

*If using a non stick darker baking tray, reduce baking time by about 2 minutes.

The post Lemon Crinkle Cookies appeared first on Lauren's Latest.

Original source:

There Is No Salsa In Yunnan

Southwestern China has its own way with charred tomatoes, cilantro, and chile. The moment I spotted the recipe for “Raw Vegetables with Charred Tomato–Chile Sauce” in Cooking South of the Clouds, a masterful exploration of the food of Yunnan in southwestern China published in 2018, I had one immediate thought: Chinese crudités! The book’s author, […]

The post There Is No Salsa In Yunnan appeared first on TASTE.

Original source:

Crispy Fried Zucchini (Deep fried or Oven Fried)

Crispy Fried Zucchini is a delicious way to enjoy all of that summer zucchini from your yard…or your well-meaning neighbor or coworker. Zucchini is sliced into medallions, coated in a parmesan breadcrumb mixture and fried until crispy! 

Zucchini fries, grilled zucchini, and this fried zucchini recipe are exactly what you should make when you are trying to find new ways to prepare and cook zucchini. You’ll never run out of ways to serve this abundant garden veggie!

Fried zucchini chips stacked on a plate.

How to Make Fried Zucchini

This is the easy part! Make as much as you have zucchini for by doubling up the recipe…oh, and give some away, too! Feel free to make these with panko which is pre-packaged and pre-seasoned. Or make them with breadcrumbs and season them yourself like the recipe below. Easy peasy!

  1. Wash and dry the zucchini and trim the ends off. Slice each zucchini into ½” medallions.
  2. Prepare the egg mixture and the breadcrumb mixture (per recipe below).
  3. Dredge zucchini in flour, dip in the egg mixture, and then coat evenly in the bread crumbs. Press down on them to make sure they are completely coated. Repeat with remaining slices.

Zucchini slices being dipped in flour, an egg mixture, and then breaded.

How to Fry Zucchini

When it comes to frying zucchini there are a few different ways to do this. You can fry it in a pan with oil, in an air fryer, or avoid the oil altogether and bake them in the oven. No matter how you choose to cook them they will end up crispy, crunchy & delicious!

  • In a Pan: Preheat oil in a frying pan, drop the coated zucchini in. Cook on each side about 2 to 3 minutes or until the coating is crispy and golden brown on both sides.
  • In an Air Fryer: Preheat the air fryer to 375°F. Place the zucchini slices in a single layer, cooking for 8 mins or until crispy and golden brown.
  • Oven-Fried: If baking in the oven without oil, simply place the coins in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes in an oven preheated to 400°F degrees.

Zucchini slices breaded on a baking sheet.

Drain on paper towels and serve hot with an assortment of dipping sauces. Try them with buttermilk ranch dip, a spicy chipotle mayo, or your favorite dipping sauce!

Still Have Zucchini?

  • Zucchini Noodles – a light and refreshing pasta!
  • Roasted Zucchini – just 5 mins prep
  • Easy Baked Zucchini – tender & crisp!
  • Zucchini Casserole – 3 main ingredients
  • Easy Stuffed Zucchini Boats – perfect family meal!
  • Zucchini Bread – freezes well

Fried Zucchini

Crispy Fried Zucchini is a delicious way to enjoy summer zucchini! Sliced into medallions, coated in a parmesan breadcrumb mixture and fried until crispy, this crispy fried zucchini will definitely become a family favorite.

  • 2 medium zucchini (about 1 1/2 lbs)
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese.
  • 2 cups seasoned bread crumbs
  • canola oil for frying
  1. Trim ends off zucchini and slice into 1/2″ slices.
  2. Beat eggs with salt and pepper to taste. Combine parmesan cheese and bread crumbs in a separate dish.
  3. Pour oil into a pan to 1/2″ deep and heat over medium heat.
  4. Dredge zucchini in flour, dip in eggs and finally dip in bread crumbs. Repeat with remaining slices.
  5. Add zucchini to the pan, a few at a time (don't crowd) cooking 2-3 minutes per side.

  6. Drain on paper towels.

Fried Zucchini chips stacked on a plate.
Fried Zucchini chips stacked on a plate.
Top image - fried zucchini chips stacked on a plate. Bottom image - sliced zucchini breaded on a baking pan.

Original source:

Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler – perfect balance of sweet & tart!

Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler may become one of your family’s all-time favorites. It’s an almost magical combination of fruity-sweet strawberries and sour-tart rhubarb, tied together with a buttery cake layer, making every bite indescribably delicious.

Like Peach Cobbler, this dessert is best served warm and topped with scoops of vanilla ice cream or dollops of whipped cream. Who knew this dessert could be so good!

A serving of strawberry rhubarb cobbler with a scoop of ice cream on top.

What is Cobbler?

Cobbler is a dessert with sugar-sweetened fruit baked with cake batter in the same pan. The batter threads its way to the top (looking like a cobbled street) as it bakes, delivering moist and melt-in-your-mouth tender globs of buttery cake in every bite. Cobbler can also be made with a biscuit-style topping (like  I use in my blueberry cobbler recipe).

Cobbler shouldn’t be confused with a fruit crisp; a crisp has a streusel-like topping with oats and at times nuts, fruit cobbler is made with a biscuit or cake-like layer. Making it a sweet, cakey, gooey dessert.

Two images showing the steps to prepare the sugar-sweetened strawberry rhubarb mixture.

To Make Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler

The flavor options are endless for cobblers. Any fruit or berry that goes in a pie can also be used in cobblers. The combination of rhubarb and strawberry, however, produces a perfectly sweet & tart balance.

  1. Simmer strawberries & rhubarb in a pot with sugar until tender.
  2. Combine cake ingredients in a separate bowl (per recipe below).
  3. Melt butter in the bottom of a pan. Scoop the cake batter over the butter and carefully spoon in the fruit over the batter. Do not mix in.
  4. Bake until bubbling hot. Let sit and serve while still warm.

Two images showing the steps to prepare strawberry rhubarb cobbler.

How to Store It

Like any baked dessert, strawberry cobbler tastes best served fresh on the same day you make it.

  • To Refrigerate: Leftovers can be stored tightly covered at room temperature for 2-3 days, or in the fridge for up to four days. Although you’ll find the cake becomes soggy, the cobbler will retain its amazing flavor.
  • To Freeze: You can also freeze it for up to four months.
  • To Reheat:  Pop in the microwave for a few seconds, or in a 350°F oven until heated.

Strawberry Rhubarb cobbler baked in a pan.

Slow Cooker Cobbler

Cobbler cooks up great in the slow cooker too. Just follow the same procedure to prep and assemble as the oven-baked version.  Cook on high for 6 hours, or on low for 7-9 hours.

What a great treat to come home to after a long day at work!

More Delicious Fruit Cobblers

  • Blackberry Cobbler – perfectly sweet & tart
  • Apple Cobbler – simple & delicious!
  • Blueberry Cobbler – quick & easy dessert!
  • Peach Cobbler – sweet & juicy peaches!

Rhubarb Strawberry Cobbler

Fresh strawberries and tart rhubarb with a tender cobbler base.

  • 1 lb fresh or frozen strawberries (sliced 1/2" thick)
  • 1/2 lb fresh or frozen rhubarb (thinly sliced)
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar (divided)
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup butter
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

  2. Place strawberries, rhubarb, and 1/2 cup of sugar in a medium saucepan. Simmer over medium heat until fruit is tender.

  3. In a large bowl, combine flour, remaining sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Stir in milk.

  4. Melt butter in the microwave and spread into the bottom of a 9×11 glass baking dish.

  5. Drop batter over the butter. Spoon the warm fruit over the batter, trying to keep it relatively even. Don't stir it in!

  6. Bake 45-55 minutes or until cake is set.

  7. Let the cobbler cool for about 10 minutes before serving.

A serving of strawberry rhubarb cobbler with a scoop of ice cream on top.
A serving of strawberry rhubarb cobbler with a scoop of ice cream on top.
Top image - a serving of strawberry rhubarb cobbler with a scoop of ice cream on top. Bottom image - ssugar-sweetened rhubarb and strawberry mixture in a pot.

Original source:

Sriracha Grilled Shrimp (Appetizer or Meal)

Sriracha Grilled Shrimp is one of our favorite spicy summer recipes. Tender shrimp is marinated in a flavorful sriracha & garlic marinade and grilled to juicy perfection. 

This summer seafood favorite is perfect as an appetizer, snack or great tucked into shrimp tacos!

Sriracha Grilled Shrimp on a plate with lemons and parsley

This post is sponsored by Mirum, all opinions expressed are my own.

Summer Grilling

Summer is my favorite time of year for making great food on the grill (like Grilled Steak Fajitas). Grilling is easy, delicious and means we don’t have to heat up the house with the oven!

Unfortunately, along with grilling sometimes comes heartburn. In fact, Omeprazole ODT commissioned the “Prevent the Summer Burn” survey of 1,029 American heartburn sufferers and found that 42 percent categorize summer as the worst time for heartburn and more than half of sufferers claim that outdoor barbecues worsens their heartburn. This shouldn’t stop us from eating our favorites!

Always talk to your doctor or a licensed professional before taking a new medication.

If you’re a frequent heartburn sufferer, being proactive and taking Omeprazole Orally Disintegrating Tablets (also referred to as ODT) helps keep heartburn at bay. ODT can provide affordable relief to those of us that suffer from heartburn two or more days/week, and you can grab it at Walmart (or other retailers) while you’re grabbing your groceries! Find Omeprazole ODT at a retailer near you. If you’re like me, it’s not always easy to remember to take medication on time. Having tablets that can easily dissolve on the tongue means I can keep a stash in my purse and discreetly take them any time and any place (without water). Perfect for someone like me who is on the go all of the time!

Relief can come in as little as 24 hours but it can take up to 1-4 days for full effect and is not for immediate relief). They’re so convenient, simply place the strawberry-flavored tablet on your tongue and let it dissolve (they’re the same small size shown on the box). Being able to take heartburn medication easily and discreetly makes summers easier and definitely more enjoyable… and allows me to enjoy my favorite summer foods like these Sriracha Grilled Shrimp!

Use Omeprazole ODT as directed for 14 days to treat frequent heartburn. Do not take it for more than 14 days or more frequently than every 4 months unless directed by a doctor.

Raw shrimp with a grilled shrimp marinade ready to be mixed

Sriracha Marinade

This marinade is easy to make and it’s a little bit sweet and a little bit spicy!

I start with frozen shrimp (of course fresh works if you have it available in your area) and defrost in the fridge or under really cold water. Peeled & deveined shrimp is easy to make and easy to eat plus it’s better to enjoy the flavor of the marinade.

Marinate the shrimp for 30-60 minutes.

Spicy sriracha shrimp marinating in a bowl and ready to grill

How To Grill Shrimp

The key to keeping shrimp juicy and tender when grilling is to be sure you don’t  overcook it.

To Make Spicy Grilled Shrimp Skewers:

  1. Soak bamboo skewers in water for at least 30 minutes. This will help keep the shrimp from sticking to them, and prevent the wood from burning when it hits the grill.
  2. Marinate the shrimp in all of the ingredients for 30 minutes. Shrimp doesn’t need to marinate long, as it is a light seafood.
  3. Thread the shrimp on the skewers, and grill for 6-8 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

Sriracha Grilled Shrimp on skewers on a plate

What To Serve With Grilled Shrimp

Grilled shrimp is perfect with other summer favorites. I love enjoying them with creamy cucumber salad, mojitos, any summer salad – really. They’re perfect in tacos, and as a topper for just about any pasta dish – mainly scampi.

Spicy food is my favorite (you’ll find me adding jalapenos to just about everything I can), but heartburn is always a risk with my favorites. It doesn’t have to stop you from enjoying recipes like this one!

A bowl of sriracha grilled shrimp ready to serve with lemons

More Recipes You’ll Love

  • Shrimp Salad – great for lunch!
  • Bang Bang Shrimp such a fun appey
  • Garlic Grilled Shrimpperfect dinner
  • Sheet Pan Shrimp Boilanother summer favorite
  • Easy Shrimp Ceviche Recipe so fresh

Sriracha Grilled Shrimp

This grilled sriracha shrimp is one of our favorite spicy summer recipes! 

  • 1 lb medium shrimp (peeled and deveined)
  • 1/4 cup butter (melted and cooled)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon parsley
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 3 tablespoons sriracha
  • cilantro for garnish
  1. Soak bamboo skewers in water for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and toss well. Marinate 30 minutes.
  3. Thread shrimp on skewers. Preheat grill to medium high heat.
  4. Grill shrimp 6-8 minutes or until cooked through.

Taking Omeprazole ODT is simple: 1 dose every 24 hours for 14 days.  Do not take Omeprazole Orally Disintegrating Tablets for more than 14 days and do not take it more often than every four months unless directed to do so by your Physician.

I am excited to have partnered with Mirum to bring you this belly-warming recipe.  While I was compensated for this post, all thoughts and opinions are my own.  Working with great brands I love allows me to keep bringing you the great recipes you love!
We love making this sriracha grilled shrimp with honey recipe for salads or shrimp tacos. It's a delicious grilled shrimp recipe that everyone loves! #spendwithpennies #srirachagrilledshrimp #grilledshrimp #srirachashrimp #sriracha #shrimp #grilled
We love making this sriracha grilled shrimp with honey recipe for salads or shrimp tacos. It's a delicious grilled shrimp recipe that everyone loves! #spendwithpennies #srirachagrilledshrimp #grilledshrimp #srirachashrimp #sriracha #shrimp #grilled

Original source:

Cucumber Tomato Salad (easy and fresh)

Cucumber Tomato Salad is a classic salad, light, cooling, and oh-so refreshing. This easy salad is made with sliced cucumbers & juicy tomatoes and enhanced with slivers of red onion and a tangy vinaigrette dressing.

Serve cucumber tomato onion salad next to grilled or roasted meats or fish, such as marinated beef or chicken kabobs, grilled salmon, or pork tenderloin.

Cucumber tomato salad in a wooden bowl.

How to Make Cucumber Tomato Salad

When the farmer’s markets start overflowing with juicy garden fresh veggies, I take my cue to make a big bowl of cucumber tomato salad.

  1. Combine all dressing ingredients (per recipe below).
  2. Slice all vegetables and toss with the dressing.

I love using a combination of fresh or dried oregano and basil in this salad to bring out its Mediterranean essence. Chopped fresh dill and-or parsley deliver equally excellent herbal notes.

Overview of cucumber tomato salad ingredients in a wooden bowl.

English cucumber is ideal for this recipe. The peels are tender enough that there’s no need to remove them, and the seeds are virtually nonexistent. If you only have regular salad cukes on hand, those are perfectly suitable as well. Just peel them, and, if the seeds seem tough, scoop them out and then slice.

Dressing for Cucumber Tomato Salad

Honestly, this salad really doesn’t need much, a simple dressing allows the flavor of the veggies to shine and keeps the salad light and fresh.

A splash of vinegar and a bit of olive oil with salt & pepper. I most often use red wine vinegar but you can use your favorite (infused oils and vinegars are great here too).

Cucumber tomato salad ingredients in a wooden bowl with dressing being poured on top.

Can I Make it Ahead?

This salad tastes great served cold and can be made ahead. Of course it’s best made the day you’re serving it but you can keep it for a couple of days and drain any juices. Whenever I’m planning this dish and need to get a jump on dinner, I partially prep the tomato-cucumber salad.

  1. In the same bowl you plan to make the salad, whisk together the wine vinegar, olive oil, herbs, salt and pepper.
  2. Peel and cut the onion into slivers and toss in the vinaigrette.
  3. Cover and refrigerate for up to a day in advance.

The onions will stay crunchy while helping the dressing mellow and develop flavor. To assemble the salad, all you have to do is slice the cucumbers and tomatoes, toss with the onion and vinaigrette mixture, and briefly refrigerate before serving.

More Fun Additions

You can have a lot of fun with this recipe, by treating it as a foundation. Go ahead and layer in other fresh and tasty ingredients like crumbled feta, mozzarella balls, avocado chunks or chopped fennel bulb. Got stale bread? Even better, turn this into a Panzanella Salad to make it a meal!

The options are limited only by your own creativity!

Salads with a Cucumber Crunch

  • Creamy Cucumber Salad – summertime staple!
  • Cucumber Onion Salad – light & refreshing
  • Cucumber Avocado Salad – simple 3 ingredient dressing!
  • Cucumber Dill Salad – made with a lemon vinaigrette
  • Creamy Cucumber Pasta Salad – potluck favorite!

Cucumber Tomato Salad

This fresh summer salad provides the perfect crunch!

  • 1 long English cucumber (sliced)
  • 2-3 large tomatoes (diced)
  • 1/2 red onion (sliced)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh herbs (parsley, basil and/or dill, optional)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • salt & pepper (to taste)
  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and toss well.
  2. Refrigerate at least 20 minutes before serving.

Cucumber tomato salad in a wooden bowl.
Cucumber tomato salad in a wooden bowl.
Top image - cucumber tomato salad in a wooden bowl. Bottom image - cucumber tomato salad ingredients in a wooden bowl with dressing being poured ontop.

Original source:

Chantilly Cream Recipe

Simple yet perfect Chantilly Cream! This recipe is an essential part of every sweet tooth’s kitchen. A perfect whipped topping to almost any dessert. If you love the taste of this chantilly cream with fresh berries, you will definitely love my decadent Berry Chantilly cake recipe. Ingredients for Chantilly Cream Heavy whipping cream– Make sure…

Read On →

The post Chantilly Cream Recipe appeared first on Simply Home Cooked.

Original source:

Blueberry Ricotta Pancakes

Easy to make Blueberry Ricotta Pancakes recipe! These delicious light and fluffy pancakes are easy to make and a perfect go-to pancake recipe. If you love blueberries on your pancakes or even crepes, then you have to make this blueberry pie filling. This recipe was originally posted on July 22, 2016, we’ve tweaked it a bit…

Read On →

The post Blueberry Ricotta Pancakes appeared first on Simply Home Cooked.

Original source:

50 Healthy School Lunch Ideas

Back to school time means we’re all looking for easy and healthy school lunch ideas. Browse this list of 50 ideas to get more variety in your day.

I’m posting these 50 Healthy School Lunch Ideas because my daughter is starting school in September. And, wouldn’t ya know my child doesn’t like sandwiches. GREAAAAAAT.

School Lunch Ideas

But, I was exactly like her growing up so lucky for me I know a thing or two about lunches that don’t completely revolve around sliced bread and meat. My mom always packed a healthy, well-balanced lunch that I for the most part enjoyed. Sometimes, I’d get the occasional sandwich, but all in all, it was just a series of snacks put together that covered all the basic food groups. That’s usually how I throw lunches together for Brooke. Protein (dairy included in this), carb, fruit, veg.

School Lunch Ideas

So, here’s a list of 50 {yes, that’s FIFTY!} healthy lunches that my daughter happens to like that you can try out on your little ones this coming school year:

1. Greek Yogurt, granola, peppers, baby tomatoes, grapes, mini muffin

2. Ham & cheese mini bagel, banana, a cup of greek yogurt, sugar snap peas

3. Peanut butter & Banana tortilla roll-ups, unsweetened applesauce pouch, celery sticks

4. Cracker pizza, broccoli with ranch, apple slices

5. Hummus & Veggie Wraps, dried fruit, crackers

6. Tex-Mex Chopped Veggie Taco Dip, tortilla chips, orange slices, frozen Greek yogurt tube

School Lunch Ideas

7. Four Cheese Pepperoni Pizza Knots, carrot sticks, a cup of diced unsweetened peaches

8. Southwest Pepper Turkey Egg Cups, watermelon cubes, fruit leather, celery sticks

9. Veggies and dip, cheese stick, banana mini muffin, trail mix

10.  Tuna fish on a croissant,  mini chocolate doughnut muffins, baby carrots, yogurt

11. Tuna Pasta Salad with Dill & peas, unsweetened applesauce pouch, red pepper slices

Cottage Cheese and Fruit

12. Basil & Pecan Chicken Salad, crackers, cucumber slices, blueberries

13. Macaroni Salad, cheese stick, apple, fruit leather, cauliflower pieces

14. Tuna California Club Sandwich, babybel cheese, dried fruit, celery sticks.

15. Hummus, pita, cucumber slices, carrot sticks, homemade granola bar

16. Cottage cheese, peanut butter sandwich crackers, strawberries, baby carrots

17. Roasted Red Pepper Dip, deli turkey, soft pita, veggies, grapes

Pita Pockets

18. Coconut Curry Chicken Salad, tortilla chips, cherries, tube yogurt

19. Turkey and cream cheese tortilla pinwheels, dried fruit, baby tomatoes,

20. Cucumber tea sandwiches, apple slices with peanut butter, cheese stick

21. Chicken Caesar Pasta salad, homemade granola bar, strawberries

22. Homemade Lunchables with meat, cheese, crackers + juice box, raspberries, unsweetened applesauce pouch

Lunch Box

23. Mini Salad Pita Pockets, pretzels, carrot sticks, mandarin oranges

24. PB&J tortilla roll up, Cocoa-Nut Almond Energy Balls, grapes, bell pepper slices

25. BLT on a soft roll, fruit leather, cheese stick, sugar snap peas

26. Ham & Cheese Melt Deviled Eggs, tube yogurt, strawberries, celery sticks

27. Laughing cow cheese wedges, pretzels, fresh cherries, lemon poppyseed mini muffin

28. Chicken & Ranch Wraps, goldfish crackers, peach, celery sticks

Turkey Slider

29. Sesame Noodle Salad, mixed fruit cup, yogurt, watermelon cubes

30. Turkey and cheese roll, goldfish crackers, green pepper slices, strawberries, nectarine

31. Fancy Chicken Salad on a mini bagel, dried fruit, black olives, cauliflower pieces

32. Green smoothie, peanut butter sandwich crackers, pear slices, trail mix

33. Jalapeño Artichoke Dip, crackers, orange bell peppers, sugar snap peas, watermelon, dried apricots

Vegetables, Chips and Dip

34. Homemade Pizza Lunchable with pita, pizza sauce, grated cheese, pepperoni, grapes, black olives, broccoli + ranch

35. Chicken soft taco, banana, unsweetened applesauce pouch, mini muffin

36. Apple slices turned into peanut butter sandwiches, yogurt raisins, cheese stick, baby tomatoes

37. Mini bagel ham sandwich, cheese stick, cucumber slices, apple, pretzels

38. Leftover slice of quiche, cherries, celery and carrot sticks, homemade crackers

39. Mini Cheese tray: Brie cheese wedge, crackers, grapes, strawberries, baby carrots

40. Tuna Fish, crackers, cheese cubes, pear, yogurt covered raisins

Cheese and Fruit

Warm School Lunch Ideas

41. Chicken Noodle Soup, crackers, apple slices, homemade granola bar

42. Homemade Spaghetti-Os, pear, cucumber slices, soft dinner roll

43. Easy Chicken Tortilla Soup, trail mix, cornbread muffin {leftovers :)}

44. Secret Ingredient Tomato Soup, biscuit, a cup of greek yogurt, fruit leather

45. Irish Beef Stew, crackers, blueberries, side salad

46. Simple Chili, grapes, cheese stick, trail mix

47. Macaroni and Cheese, a cup of fruit, carrot sticks, ranch

48. Tomato Basil Alphabet Soup, chocolate milk box, garlic toast, strawberries

Bagel Sandwich

49. Sweet and Sour Meatballs, rice, yogurt, apple slices

50. Spaghetti, fruit smoothie, yogurt raisins, broccoli and ranch

Looking for even more school lunch ideas?

  • 50 (more!) School Lunch Ideas
  • School Lunch Guide
  • Packing Healthy Lunches for Back to School
  • After School Snack Board

The post 50 Healthy School Lunch Ideas appeared first on Lauren's Latest.

Original source:

This Week at the Brennans’

Our entire family is re-entered back into the real world after our vacation to Maine and man was it a hard, boring week. Can’t wait until school starts again.

Here’s what happened this past week:

When we got back from Maine, we had the mini crib waiting for us! So we got that all set up and ready. Just missing the baby now! I also got sheets, a diaper bag, a few different kinds of pacifiers (because you just never know which one will be preferred) and a white blessing outfit. All the clothes are folded and organized and I even have a coming home outfit for the little guy too! 5 more weeks! Eek!

I’m doing weekly doctors appointments now and have them all scheduled until baby’s arrival.

Like I mentioned last week, I’ve had some pretty severe pain with pregnancy that I’m trying to live with. It is not easy!! My doctor says its totally normal and it will go away after I deliver the baby, so there’s that saving grace, but I hate that I’m uncomfortable with every movement I have. I wish I could enjoy these last few weeks as much as I enjoyed the first six months, but it is so challenging. I don’t know how people can live with chronic pain in their lives. So, I am counting the days, basically. But it’s been really fun to go back and read the baby updates I wrote when I was pregnant with Blake and Eddie. I’ve had this blog for a long time and am so grateful I have these little glimpses.

On Sunday, we went picnicking with friends in Central Park. We almost didn’t go because walking makes me really sore, but I decided to just bite the bullet and go. So glad we did! We ended up staying 3 hours talking, playing and exploring. Gordon worked the whole weekend, so it was just me and the kids, but glad there was a decent turn out to keep my little ones occupied.

I posted some pretty tasty recipes this week! Amazing Cherry Pie, super delicious chicken salad and bakery-style blueberry muffins. I’ve also instituted a recipe of the day on instagram! I like going into my archives and finding old recipes that you never knew existed 🙂 I have 1400 recipes!! Bringing a few back from the dead is always a good thing!

Since being enormously pregnant in August isn’t torturous enough, we’ve decided to do a no technology rule until school starts. Our kids are so much happier without screens in front of their faces. The first few days are rough, but beyond that, things get better and their minds and imaginations start working again. It’s been hard for me to compartmentalize my work so that I’m not staring at my phone during the day as frequently, but I’m getting used to it.

Gordon is back to shift work! For a good long stretch, he had a consistent schedule, but we knew it wouldn’t last forever and here we are again, back to shift work. I think this will be super helpful once the baby arrives but until then I’m a bit annoyed with it. There are definitely pros and cons to both schedules and I can complain about both for sure (haha!) but am mostly just so grateful that he still loves his job.

Brooke got her hair cut a few days ago! I love being able to braid her hair, but she wanted it short for school, so we chopped it. She loves it right at her shoulders, so there it will stay. One more thing off my to do list!

And finally, we are dog sitting this week! Our little pal, Brady, showed up a few days ago and the kids are in heaven. Certainly makes the no technology rule more bearable for my kids. The first night, he was barking and whining a bunch which was terrible but things have gotten significantly better since then and this little dog is over the moon happy to have kids wake up and play with him ALL.DAY.LONG. Brooke is especially pushing for a dog of her own, but I keep reminding her that she’s getting another brother instead 😉 Haha! Poor girl doesn’t like that answer.

Since Gordon is doing some shift work, we were all able to go to HomeGoods and pick up a few things for the apartment and baby’s room. Gordon wanted to get this shark outfit for Eddie but he refused to wear it, but Blake certainly tried it on! These boys are so fun. So glad we’re getting another one in our family soon.

Catching a ride on our way home from grocery shopping. Notice his big smile!
Our little pal, Brady.

Here’s what is coming up this next week:

Another doctors appointment for the little nugget. Assuming all will be well 🙂 Still in pain, but apparently that’s all normal. Down to weekly appointments now!

More dog sitting 🙂

Hopefully doing a little painting in the baby’s room/office…still transitioning things over. 5 weeks left!

Never Miss a Week!

Last week: This Week at the Brennans’

Two weeks ago: This Week at the Brennans’

Three weeks ago: This Week at the Brennans’

The post This Week at the Brennans’ appeared first on Lauren's Latest.

Original source:

Interview With the Vampiro

How the vampiro, a crunchy antojito from Sinaloa, Mexico, came to captivate the South Los Angeles street food scene. Of the many possible combinations of meat, cheese, salsa, and tortilla that make up an essential portion of Mexican cuisine known as antojitos (snacks or “little cravings”), there’s nothing I would rather sink my teeth into […]

The post Interview With the Vampiro appeared first on TASTE.

Original source:

50 Shades of Furikake

What started as a Japanese calcium supplement became a seasoning to supercharge everything from crudité to spaghetti. In Japan, a simple shake of furikake transforms white rice into a stand-alone meal. In Hawaii, it’s used liberally on everything from popcorn to spam musubi and baked salmon. Despite these differences, the textural mix of slivered nori, […]

The post 50 Shades of Furikake appeared first on TASTE.

Original source:

Easiest Crock Pot Chicken Fajitas

crockpot chicken fajitas

Crockpot Chicken Fajitas are an easy, weeknight slow cooker dinner that come together with just a few simple ingredients! Chicken breasts are tossed in crockpot with sliced peppers and spices to create this mouthwatering dish!

Crockpot recipes are a lifesaver around here, regardless of whether it’s busy school weeknights or the middle of summer holiday chaos. Turning a traditional chicken fajita recipe into a slow cooker meal is great for busy weeknights and a favorite with the whole family!

Chicken fajitas with peppers and a sauce cooking in a white crockpot with rice and cilantro on the side

How to Make Crockpot Chicken Fajitas:

Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas are a dump and go recipe. Once everything is in the pot, they just hang out until they’re done, and you really don’t have to do anything to serve them.

  1. Add chicken breasts and broth to crockpot. Season well with homemade chicken fajita seasoning (per recipe below).
  2. Add vegetables and sprinkle with remaining seasoning.
  3. Spread salsa on top in a thin even layer to keep everything moist.
  4. Cover and cook.

When it comes to cooking, the exact time will depend on your preferences and how your slow cooker cooks. I’ve found 4 hours on low to be lots, and you could also cook for 2 hours on high.

If you need to leave it longer, be sure that your slow cooker switches to keep it warm once the cook time is over.

crockpot chicken fajitas with peppers, salsa and sour cream on white platter with rice and tortillas in the background

Can I Make These Chicken Fajitas on the Stovetop?

Yes! You can easily make these fajitas on the stove if you don’t have a slow cooker. Or while the weather is still nice, try making grilled chicken fajitas on the barbecue! Or try fajitas in the oven!

Simply add all of your ingredients to a large saucepan with a lid, bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, then reduce heat to medium and simmer for 15-20 minutes until your chicken breasts reach an internal temperature of at least 165°F.

Let chicken breasts rest on a cutting board for 5 minutes before slicing.

two crock pot chicken fajitas with peppers in tortilla with cilantro, sour cream, salsa and rice in the background

What to Serve With These Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas:

Grab some corn or flour tortillas, and whatever toppings you enjoy with crockpot fajitas, and you’re set! Some of our favorite things to serve with these Chicken Fajitas are:

  • Shredded cheese
  • Avocados or Guacamole
  • Fresh tomatoes or homemade Pico de Gallo
  • Sour cream and salsa
  • Cilantro Lime Rice or Spanish Rice

More Crockpot Dinner Ideas:

  • Crockpot Chicken Tacos – only 5 simple ingredients!
  • Slow Cooker Chicken Breasts – perfectly juicy & seasoned
  • BBQ Crockpot Pulled Pork – so easy & flavorful
  • CrockPot Beef Stew– ultimate comfort food!
  • Pork Carnitas Recipe (Slow Cooker) – tender & succulent meat!

Crockpot Chicken Fajitas

These Crockpot Chicken Fajitas are an easy, weeknight slow cooker dinner that come together with just a few simple ingredients!

  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 red bell pepper (thinly sliced)
  • 1 green bell pepper (thinly sliced)
  • 1 yellow bell pepper (thinly sliced)
  • 1 onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1 cup tomato salsa
  1. In a small bowl, combine chili powder, salt, brown sugar, garlic powder, cumin and cayenne pepper.

  2. In a 2.5-4 quart crockpot, add broth and chicken breasts in a single layer. Sprinkle chicken with half of the seasoning.
  3. Top with peppers and onion and season with remaining seasoning mix.

  4. Add salsa and spread into a thin layer on top of the peppers.
  5. Put the lid on and cook on low for 3-4 hours, or on high for 2 hours, until chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165F degrees.

  6. Serve with tortillas, salsa, rice, sour cream, and cheese as desired.

These Crockpot Chicken Fajitas are an easy, weeknight slow cooker dinner that come together with just a few simple ingredients! #crockpot #slowcooker #chicken
These Crockpot Chicken Fajitas are an easy, weeknight slow cooker dinner that come together with just a few simple ingredients! #crockpot #slowcooker #chicken
These Crockpot Chicken Fajitas are an easy, weeknight slow cooker dinner that come together with just a few simple ingredients! #crockpot #slowcooker #chicken

Original source:

Italian Pasta Salad

Italian pasta salad is one of my favorite cold pasta salad dishes!  Fresh and colorful vegetables, cheese, salami, and Italian vinaigrette are tossed with your favorite pasta to create an unforgettable dish for just about any summer occasion.

Pasta salads are one of my go to potluck dishes from easy and fresh Greek Pasta Salad to a delicious Caesar Pasta Salad and of course my famous Dill Pickle Pasta Salad! Not only does everyone love them, pasta salads are super easy to make and  they’re even better when made ahead of time!

A bowl full of colorful Italian Pasta salad ready for a potluck!

Potluck Perfect Pasta Salad

Whenever summer rolls around, we always seem to be headed to barbecues, potlucks, and patio parties. Of course I’m always asked to bring a big pitcher of Classic Mojitos (it’s the drink I’m known for) but I almost always bring a cold pasta salad recipe along too!

This Italian Pasta Salad recipe is a really fun twist on a classic pasta salad because it’s loaded with so many goodies. It travels well and goes with pretty much anything.

Big Bold Flavors

This easy pasta salad recipe is loaded with flavor, you can add in your own favorite Italian inspired ingredients; diced artichokes and sun dried tomatoes also make great additions! 

Ingredients for pasta salad:

  • Bold Flavors: cheese, salami, olives and Italian seasonings add a big punch of flavor
  • Crunch: Bell pepper adds great  for color, crunch and flavor
  • Veggies: I love the juicy tang tomatoes add, throw in some cucumbers or any veggies you have on hand

A small serving of colorful Italian Pasta salad ready for a potluck!

Noodles for Pasta Salad

Tri-color rotini does an amazing job at holding the cheese and Italian dressing in the crevices for max flavor, but you can use shells, or whatever medium noodles you happen to have handy!

Cook the pasta al dente so it isn’t mushy and it holds up well to the dressing.

Tips to Make the Perfect Italian Pasta Salad

  • Cut your veggies small: Cutting your vegetables into pieces slightly smaller than bite-sized will ensure that you get a taste of everything in each bite!
  • Don’t overcook your noodles: Overcooking will make a mushy pasta salad as the acids from the dressing will break down the starches farther. Shock your noodles once they are cooked al dente in cold water for best results!
  • Cool your pasta before adding the toppings: You don’t want to begin to cook your vegetables while you toss everything together!
  • Let your pasta salad sit before you serve it: This gives the dressing a chance to really permeate your veggies and pasta, resulting in a more flavorful and delicious Italian pasta salad!
  • Keep it colorful: If you are adding some extra veggies you have on hand, keep your pasta salad fun and colorful! I love adding things like artichokes, shredded carrots, sun-dried tomatoes, peppers, etc.

A bowl full of colorful Italian Pasta salad ready for a party!

Italian Pasta Salad Dressing

To make this recipe quick and easy, I use a bottled Italian dressing but of course homemade Italian Dressing is amazing if you have the ingredients on hand.

Make ahead… The best thing about this pasta salad recipe is that it gets better as it sits and the flavors blend! It’s the perfect make ahead side dish, it takes 20 only about minutes to prepare. What could be better than that?

As this Italian pasta salad sits in the fridge, the acids in the dressing actually work to help break down the starches in the pasta and the proteins in the veggies, resulting in a more flavorful and tender pasta salad (so be sure not to overcook your noodles)!

To Make Homemade Italian Dressing combine the following:

Favorite Pasta Salad Recipes

  • Caprese Pasta Salad
  • Creamy Tuna Pasta Salad
  • Bow Tie Pasta Salad
  • BLT Pasta Salad
  • Easy Greek Pasta Salad
  • Dill Pickle Pasta Salad

Italian Pasta Salad

Tender pasta, ripe juicy tomatoes, crisp bell peppers, salami and mozzarella cheese are tossed in an Italian dressing for the perfect make ahead side dish.

  • 16 oz tricolor rotini
  • 1/2 green bell pepper (diced)
  • 1/2 orange bell pepper (diced)
  • 1/2 red bell pepper (diced)
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes (halved)
  • 1/2 cup sliced black olives
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese (cubed)
  • 1/3 cup red onion (diced)
  • 8 oz salami (chopped)
  • 1 cup bottled Italian vinaigrette dressing
  • 1/3 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 3 tablespoons fresh parsley (chopped)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • salt & pepper (to taste)
  1. Cook pasta al dente according to package directions. Rinse under cold water.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Add dressing and toss.
  3. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.

Repin this Super Summer Salad!

Italian pasta salad is one of my favorite cold pasta salad dishes!  Fresh and colorful vegetables, cheese, salami, and Italian vinaigrette are tossed with your favorite pasta to create an unforgettable dish for just about any summer occasion. #spendwithpennies #summersalad #pastasalad #easysidedish #easyrecipe #pastarecipe #healthyrecipe #freshsidedish

Original source:

Amazing Cherry Pie

Nothing screams summer more than a sweet cherry pie! Get this homemade, from scratch recipe that calls for a flaky crust filled to the brim with fresh dark cherries.

With summer and cherry season coming to a close, there is no better recipe to make than this Cherry Pie recipe! I love apple pie and a fabulous mixed berry streusel pie, but this easy cherry pie is where its at! Tastes best with the sweet cherries from the Pacific Northwest, but just as tasty any time of year made with frozen.

Special thanks to Northwest Cherry Growers for sponsoring this post

As Sweet as Cherry Pie

There are so many variations and options when it comes to making cherry pie. You can use fresh cherries, frozen cherries, buy a pre-made filling, cook your own filling or make one fresh. This recipe calls for 5 cups of fresh, dark pitted cherries that are tossed together with a combination of sugar, flour, cornstarch, lemon juice and almond extract.

Add that filling to a homemade (or store bought!) flaky pie crust, add a lattice and bake.

Best cherries for Cherry Pie

The sweet cherries I used for this recipe are big, plump, fresh Northwest Cherries. When we lived in Oregon, we got SO spoiled enjoying these kinds of cherries every summer. After moving across the country to New York, we are always on the prowl, looking for the Northwest cherries because they are the best of the best.

The Northwest has unique growing conditions. Because of those conditions, Northwest-grown sweet cherries have an exceptional flavor profile and the perfect amount of sweetness. That’s why we like to cook with them whenever we can find them. Northwest-grown sweet cherries are available across the country through early August, so now is the time to buy!

How to pick the best cherries to buy

When shopping, look for cherries with firm, shiny and smooth skins. In general, the darker the cherry, the sweeter. With the most common varieties, this is a sign of ripeness.

Frozen vs. Fresh Cherries in Pie

Both frozen and fresh cherries can work when making a cherry pie. Success ultimately comes down to water content in the fruit and adding enough thickener to the filling so you don’t get a watery, sloppy mess after baking. This may take some trial and error on your part, especially since fruit varies so much season to season, as do the brands of frozen cherries.

In general, there is more water in frozen fruit than fresh, so add 1-2 tablespoons extra flour to your filling compensate.

Also, when in doubt, add in an extra sprinkle of cornstarch for extra stability and let the pie cool completely before cutting and serving.

How to freeze fresh cherries in three simple steps:

If you have extra cherries on hand and would like to freeze them for baking at a later date, here is how you do it:

  1. Wash and pit all the cherries. This is the pitter I use and love. Works like a charm.
  2. Place cherries onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet and freeze flat for 12-24 hours.
  3. After this initial freeze, transfer frozen cherries into a large plastic zip-top bag.

Cherries should keep 3-6 months as long as they are in an air-tight, freezer safe bag.

Be sure to save/print/bookmark/pin this tasty recipe! You’re not going to want to lose it 🙂 Have a great day, friends!

Amazing Cherry Pie Recipe

Nothing screams summer more than a sweet cherry pie! Get this homemade, from scratch recipe that calls for a flaky crust filled to the brim with fresh dark cherries.

  • 2 pie crusts (homemade or store bought)

For the cherry pie filling

  • 5 cups fresh cherries (washed and pitted)
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup corn starch
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon coarse sugar (optional)
  • vanilla ice cream or whipped cream (optional, for serving)
  1. Roll one pie crust into the bottom of a glass pie plate and refrigerate while making the filling.

  2. In a large bowl, toss fresh cherries together with sugar, lemon juice, almond extract, flour and corn starch. Pour into pie plate and spread cherry filling out to fill evenly.

  3. Top cherry filling with lattice pie crust or a vented full crust. Crimp edges. Brush top crust with heavy cream and sprinkle with coarse sugar.

  4. Bake at 400 degrees for 1 hour or until the bottom crust looks golden brown. If top crust starts to get too dark, cover with foil until bottom has fully cooked.

  5. Remove from oven and cool completely before cutting and serving.

*If using frozen cherries, add an extra tablespoon of flour or cornstarch for extra stability.

Love this cherry pie recipe? Here are some others you will love:

  • Lemon Cream Pie with Fresh Raspberries
  • Creme Brulee Lemon Pie
  • Buttery Apple Pie
  • Fail-Proof Pumpkin Pie
  • Easy Double Chocolate Cream Pie

The post Amazing Cherry Pie appeared first on Lauren's Latest.

Original source:

Pesto Isn’t Just Ligurian, It’s Italian

From the Dolomites to Sicily, there are as many styles and shades of pesto as there are regions in Italy. I love pesto the way I love driving a red Fiat 500 around Florence and bingeing on Luca Guadagnino films: unapologetically and with full knowledge of how deeply I’m buying into the cliché. But my […]

The post Pesto Isn’t Just Ligurian, It’s Italian appeared first on TASTE.

Original source:

Asian Noodle Salad packed with fresh veggies!

Asian Noodle Salad is a quick and tasty salad with freshness, crunch, and a taste you’ll love! This fun twist on a traditional spaghetti salad has noodles, crisp fresh veggies and juicy mandarin oranges are all tossed in a sesame ginger dressing to make every zesty bite sensational.

Packed with healthy raw veggies, Asian noodle salad, (like ramen noodle salad) is easy to prep and makes a terrific lunch or fresh casual summer dinner. Serve with a glass of cucumber water for a refreshing meal!

Asian noodle salad in a wooden bowl.

What’s in Asian Noodle Salad?

Asian noodle salad is a practical go-to recipe anytime you have leftover pasta or grilled chicken breasts on hand from last night’s dinner or barbecue. Other ingredients come from the fresh produce aisle:

  • Base: spaghetti or pasta noodles, sesame ginger dressing
  • Crunch: broccoli florets, carrots, sugar snap peas, bean sprouts
  • Flavor: green onion, chopped cilantro
  • Garnish: toasted slivered almonds, mandarin oranges
  • Optional Add-Ins: chicken, salted peanuts

Asian noodle salad ingredients in a glass bowl.

How Long Does Noodle Salad Last?

Asian noodle salad can be made a well in advance and enjoyed for lunches throughout the week. Toss with sesame ginger dressing before storing it to allow all of the flavors to blend.

If you adding in freshly cooked chicken breasts, you can store leftovers in the fridge for about three days in a tightly covered container. However, this dish contains so many raw vegetables, it is not a good candidate for the freezer.

Two images showing the Asian noodle salad ingredients before and after dressing is poured ontop.

What to Serve it With?

If adding grilled chicken, this is a perfectly balanced one-pot meal. Starch, veg, and meat all in one bowl means no need to fuss with side dishes! It’s a great side for Teriyaki Grilled Chicken Thighs too!

Dress up the meal by serving it Asian restaurant-style, with crunchy fried noodles and bowls of hot and sweet dipping sauces. An icy cold pitcher of strawberry lemonade will complete the meal.

More Delicious Salads

  • Creamy Cucumber Salad – refreshing summertime staple!
  • Avocado Salmon Salad – made with a light lemony dressing
  • Arugula Salad with Berries – light, refreshing & easy!
  • Creamy Broccoli Slaw – crunchy, crispy summer salad
  •  Mediterranean Orzo Salad– tangy & nourishing side dish

Asian Noodle Salad

Delicious salad with the freshness, crunch, and taste of the Far East!

  • 8 oz linguine or spaghetti (cooked and cooled)
  • 1 red bell pepper (sliced)
  • 1 cup broccoli florets (cut small)
  • 1 cup sugar snap peas (sliced diagonally)
  • 1/2 cup carrots (julienned)
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons almonds (slivered & toasted)
  • 2 green onions (sliced)
  • 1 cup mandarin orange segments (drained)
  • 1 cup sesame ginger dressing (store bought or homemade)
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds (for garnish)
  1. Place pasta, red bell pepper, broccoli, sugar snap peas, carrots, and bean sprouts in a bowl.

  2. Add dressing, sesame seeds and soy sauce. Toss well.

  3. Mix in cilantro, slivered almonds, and green onions (reserve a little bit of each for garnish).

  4. Garnish with orange slices and remaining cilantro and green onions and toasted almonds.

Asian noodle salad in a wooden bowl.
Asian noodle salad in a wooden bowl.
Top image - Asian noodle salad in a wooden bowl. Bottom image - Sesame ginger dressing being poured over an Asian noodle salad.

Original source:

Decadent Caramel Chocolate Trifle

Caramel Chocolate Trifle is a decadent, easy, and divine to look at dessert. Chocolate cake, chocolate pudding, fudge sauce, caramel, and whipped topping are layered to create this decadent treat!  

A trifle is a keeper for sure when you want a dessert recipe to impress your guests or celebrate a birthday, it’s easy to make…but looks fancy!

Caramel Chocolate trifle garnished with mint, caramel squares and whipped topping.

What Exactly Is a Trifle?

A trifle is a layered dessert, often referred to as a ‘fool’, or even a parfait. Essentially, pieces of cake, fruit, creamy fillings, and whipped cream are layered in a clear glass bowl, chilled and then served. But, the amazing twist to this trifle recipe is that the layers are brownie-like cake, caramel, and pudding! It’s pure chocolate and caramel decadence!

Keep this recipe close by for those special celebrations when you want to elevate an ordinary chocolate cake!

Overview of Chocolate trifle ingredients.

Can It Be Made in Advance?

This particular version of a trifle can (and definitely should) be made in advance. It actually tastes better after it’s been chilled a little bit and the sauce has a chance to soak into the cake a bit. Make sure it is covered or sealed tightly before putting it in the refrigerator so it doesn’t absorb the odors or flavors of the other items.

Let it sit at room temperature a few minutes before serving and top with freshly whipped cream and maybe even some chocolate shavings or colorful sprinkles!

Two images showing the steps to layering the trifle with cake chunks and pudding.

Can a Trifle Be Frozen?

Even though it’s a layered dessert, a trifle can be frozen if it is initially prepared in a casserole dish. Just tightly cover, label and place in the freezer.

Once thawed, refresh this trifle with a little extra fudge sauce or caramel sauce and some whipped cream and you are good to go!

Other Great Things to Add to a Trifle!

One of the great things about a layered dessert is that literally anything can be added to it as long as it fits with the basic recipe.

For this Caramel Chocolate Trifle recipe, why not add a colorful layer of sliced strawberries or bananas? Even a layer of roasted chopped nuts like walnuts or peanut would be a super tasty complement to this recipe!

More Chocolate-y Desserts

  • Texas Sheet Cake – moist, decadent cake
  • Chocolate Caramel Cake – delicious & fully loaded with caramel!
  • Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake – just 10 mins prep!
  • Caramel Chocolate Covered Pretzels – perfectly sweet & salty
  • Chocolate Cake Mix Cookies – only 4 ingredients!

Caramel Chocolate Trifle

This Caramel Chocolate trifle is not only one of the easiest desserts to put together, but it's definitely one of the tastiest too!


  • 1 box chocolate cake mix plus ingredients required to make cake


  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1-3/4 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water


  • 2 boxes chocolate pudding mix
  • 4 cups milk


  • 1 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup cocoa
  • 6 tablespoons cornstarch
  • pinch of salt
  • 4 1/4 cups milk
  • 2 tablespoons butter


  • 1 (12oz) container frozen whipped topping ((such as Cool Whip))
  • 1 cup caramel sauce ((homemade is best))
  • 1 cup fudge sauce ((homemade is best))


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. If using a box mix, bake cake according to package directions in a 9×13 pan.

  2. For homemade cake, grease and flour a 9×13 pan.
  3. In a large bowl, combine sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  4. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla to dry mixture and mix with an electric mixer on medium for about 2 minutes. Gently mix in boiling water. Note: Your batter will seem thin, it’s ok.. it’s supposed to!
  5. Pour into prepared pan and bake 35-40 minute. Cool completely.


  1. Mix both boxes of pudding mix with 4 cups milk according to package directions.
  2. OR for homemade pudding, combine sugar, cocoa powder, cornstarch and salt in a saucepan, mix well. Add in cold milk, stir until combined.
  3. Turn heat onto medium high stirring constantly until mixture comes to a boil.
  4. Allow to boil for 1 minute while stirring, remove from heat and stir in butter. Cool completely stirring occasionally to avoid a skin forming.


  1. Cut cake into small cubes. Reserve 1 cup of whipped topping for garnish.
  2. In a trifle dish, layer 1/2 of the cake, 1/2 of the fudge sauce, 1/2 of the whipped topping, 1/2 of the caramel, 1/2 of the pudding. Repeat layers.
  3. Top with reserved whipped topping. Refrigerate 4 hours or overnight.

Chocolate Trifle shown in a clear trifle bowl.
Chocolate Trifle shown in a clear trifle bowl.
The top photo shows Chocolate Trifle in a clear trifle bowl. The bottom photo shows the process of layering the brownie and caramel sauce.

Original source:

Homemade Banana Cream Pie from scratch!

Banana Cream Pie is an old-fashioned pie made from scratch. A flaky pie crust is filled with layers of banana and a rich creamy vanilla custard. It’s all topped off with mounds of freshly whipped cream.

When it comes to dessert, you can’t go wrong by serving this luscious homemade pie.

A slice of banana cream pie on a plate.

Crust for Banana Cream Pie

This pie can be made with either a traditional pastry pie crust or a no-bake graham cracker crust.

Graham Cracker Crust: A graham cracker crust doesn’t require baking. Store bought graham crusts tend to be a bit thin and don’t hold up as well. Making a graham crust takes only about 5 minutes.

Pastry Crust: If using a pastry crust (either homemade or frozen from the store) you will want to blind bake the pie crust (bake it empty).

Overhead image of Banana Cream Pie ingredients on a cutting board.

How to Make Banana Cream Pie

Making banana cream pie from scratch creates a filling that is richer with a fuller flavor than the kind that comes from a box. I’m sure you’ll agree it’s not difficult and its well worth the little extra effort involved!

Banana Cream Pie Filling:

  1. Heat the sugar, cornstarch, and milk in a saucepan.
  2. Temper the eggs: When the milk mixture is steaming hot, slowly spoon a bit into beaten eggs while stirring. Add the egg mixture back into the pan and cook until thickened.
  3. Transfer to a bowl, press a piece of plastic wrap over the surface to prevent a skin forming and refrigerate.

Tip: Tempering Eggs

Tempering eggs just means to warm them slowly so they don’t turn into scrambled eggs or get lumpy when mixed into a hot liquid.

To temper eggs, whisk eggs in a bowl. Add a little bit of hot liquid (usually about 1/2-1 cup) while whisking the eggs. This will gradually bring the temperature up.

Next add the egg mixture back into the remaining hot mixture and cook until thickened.

To Assemble the Banana Cream Pie

  1. Spread a small amount of custard (per recipe below) in the graham cracker crust or prebaked pie shell.
  2. Cover with sliced bananas.
  3. Top with remaining custard and heaps of whipped cream. Refrigerate.

Two images showing the Banana Cream pie being layered.

To Store Cream Pies

Once the crust is finished, this pie recipe requires no baking. It tastes best when served chilled so refrigerate at least 3-4 hours uncovered before serving!

  • Refrigerator: You can keep it in the fridge up to 3 days, if you keep it too long, the bananas may get a bit weepy but it’ll still taste great!
  • Freezer: Can Banana Cream Pie be frozen? Sure, you can freeze banana cream pie and it can be served frozen or partially frozen too.

Overview of banana cream pie with a slice next to it.

The next time you’re planning a backyard barbecue or party, delight your family and guests with this light, refreshing dessert. It’s the perfect finish for any meal.

Delicious No Bake Pies

  • Ultimate Coconut Cream Pie – deliciously fluffy!
  • No Bake Key Lime Pie – Sweet, tart and delicious!
  • No Bake Strawberry Pie – Summer perfect!
  • Fresh Strawberries & Cream Pie – Zesty lemon filling
  • Snickers Cream Pies – bite-sized snacks!

Banana Cream Pie

An old-fashioned pie made entirely from scratch!

  • 1 single pie crust (baked)
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/3 cups whole milk
  • 4 eggs (beaten)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 large bananas
  • 1 cup heavy cream (whipped)
  1. In a small saucepan, combine sugar, cornstarch, salt and milk. Whisk over medium heat until hot and bubbly. Let boil 1 minute and remove from heat.
  2. Whisk 1/2 cup of the hot mixture into the eggs a spoonful at a time until incorporated.
  3. Pour the egg mixture back into the pot and whisk. Bring to a low boil and let cook 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and butter. Transfer to a large bowl and cover with plastic wrap allowing the wrap to touch the surface of the custard mixture. Refrigerate 30-45 minutes.
  4. Spread a thin layer of custard into the prepared pie crust. Add sliced bananas and remaining custard.
  5. Spread with whipped cream and refrigerate at least 4 hours.

A slice of banana cream pie on a plate.
A slice of banana cream pie on a plate.
Top image - a slice of banana cream pie on a plate. Bottom image - banana cream pie being layered with a custard pudding filling and sliced bananas.

Original source: