Easy No-Knead Bread

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 Some of us may lack the time and patience to bake our own bakery-style artisan loaf. Granted, handy bread machines are fantastic for certain recipes. That said, wouldn't it be great to make an extra crisp artisan round with little effort? Professional baker Jim Lahey is the genius of no-knead bread dough. His recipe is so easy. It does require the dough to rest for 4 hours, and then another 30 minutes before baking. A Dutch oven (which I used here) makes a super crispy loaf, which I love it to...

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12 Thanksgiving Recipes…ideas for your table and leftovers

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These are some of my favorite Thanksgiving holiday dishes, including leftovers (originally posted in 2014). Well worth recycling again this year...they're keepers. That's not to say I don't serve a few of them year round! Happy Thanksgiving! To view a recipe, click the underlined link below each picture. Roasted Root Vegetables Brussels Sprout Casserole Garlic Mashed Potatoes Spiked Cranberry Sauce Candied Yams Turkey Gravy From Homemade Stock Roasted Italian Turkey Mull...

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Pork and Beans

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If you like the heartiness and flavor of pork and beans, and can't get yourself to buy  canned...then take my advise, homemade are quite easy to make. I intended to use dried Navy beans but my local health food store didn't have any, so I bought canned organic low-sodium Navy beans - which saved me the time of soaking overnight and precooking. The only pork involved here is a small chunk of salt pork. I bought a chunk, cut it into pieces and put the rest in the freezer for future batches. I ...

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Speedy-Shortcut Homemade Chicken Broth/Soup

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Need a comfort soup you can throw together in a hurry? I just discovered while poaching chicken breasts (for enchiladas), the leftover liquid made a pleasant broth. It was clean, light and user friendly. I stuck it in the fridge overnight, and the next day made a satisfying tasty chicken soup in short order. I heated the broth and tossed in some leftover shredded chicken, chopped veggies from the fridge and frozen corn and peas from the freezer. I even threw in a carb - cooked rice. In just a fe...

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Tamale Casserole

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I went for as authentic a flavor as possible, in this tamale casserole - in the form of homemade tortillas made from organic masa harina corn flour. Some recipes call for store bought tortillas, which I've used before (still an option for you, if desired). I have a tortilla press, which is recommended here (manual or electric), because I've always struggled with hand rolling homemade tortillas successfully, without sticking. An investment well worth the expense, especially if you like homemade t...

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Veggie-Rice Medley

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When I need a carb based side dish other than potatoes and bread, I turn to rice.  This recipe has become a standby for me, using a few simple chopped vegetables. Today I used a basmati medley (from Trader Joe's), last time it was all white basmati rice; brown rice works, too. I sauteed carrots, zucchini, red bell pepper and shallots until caramelized - then folded into the rice (which is cooked in chicken broth). Simple, easy and tasty! I use coconut oil for its low smoke point, health adva...

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Italian Sub…a Saturday tradition

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On many a Saturday morning when I was a kid, we made a beeline with my mom to Dalvia’s Italian Bakery in Montrose, California. Mr. Dalvia's Italian rolls (and apple turnovers) were to-die-for; getting there late wasn't an option (slim pickings to none). Cold cuts were a must from Monte Carlo’s (Italian Market in Burbank). I'm talking about Genoa salami, capicola, and provolone cheese. Not to mention bread sticks, biscotti, olive oil, olives, pasta, gelato, pastries, fresh mozzarella, canned ...

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Got Fresh Roma Tomatoes?…..make 4 fabulous Italian sauces!

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Tomatoes are peaking and if you've got a bunch of Romas, these 4 authentic tasting Italian tomato sauces are an excellent choice. Whether you can or freeze the sauce, you can enjoy fresh tasting tomato sauce for months to come. Here are 4 previously posted recipes I love make with fresh Romas - fresh tomato basil sauce, homemade meat sauce, garlic tomato sauce, and fancy pomodoro sauce. Sure, you do need to put in a little effort - but these are tried and true, straight forward Italian family re...

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Cool Off With Gelato – 11 flavors

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Strawberry Gelato It's peak summer and warm, hot, and possibly sweltering, depending on where you are. Gelato is the perfect cool down light desert, packed with flavor and fantastic served with summer fruits. Unlike regular ice cream, gelato is made for the most part with milk and a much smaller amount of cream. So it's not as filling and has a lower fat content - less guilt and no shortage of creaminess and flavor. Here are 10 fabulous flavors I make year long (just click the links). You do ne...

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Strawberry Raspberry Hand Pies

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There's nothing like a slice of homemade pie. But change is good, as in these rugged handheld little gems. Extra flaky, tender berry filled pastry squares, sealed together...with a sweet-tart fresh fruit center. They're rustic, so no expertise nor perfection required; just an honest interest and desire to create something fun and delicious. Make the pastry first. I recommend using a food processor, it's quick and easy. The butter should be very cold and hard. Pulse until the dough sticks t...

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