Mixed Fruit and Basil Crumble

Have you ever opened the fruit drawer in your refrigerator and seen a sad assortment of fruit that has been left behind and forgotten in their little plastic containers?  A dozen raspberries, five or six strawberries (looking a little sad), a handful of cherries, or a slightly wrinkled peach? You could blitz it all together into a smoothie (which, I understand, some people enjoy 😖) or you could pull together this quick and easy Mixed Fruit Crumble!  The combination of the tart and jammy fruit filling with the buttery and crispy crumble topping is impossible to resist! With addition of basil in the fruit filling, and a final touch of vanilla ice cream, I’m gonna start purposely ‘forgetting’ I have fruit in the fridge all the time!  (Read more…)

Pecan Bars with Shortbread Crust

As a Southern girl born in Chattahoochee County, Georgia, I have pecan pie running through my veins.  It’s one of the first desserts I can remember Olga Mae (my Grandma) ever serving me, and it might be my favorite overall flavor combination.  The deep, caramel flavor with a little salt, a lot of sweet, and the crunch of the nuts… it covers all my craves right there!  But, over time, I’ve gotten to where I don’t really want all the gooshy parts of the pie.  You know what I mean.  I don’t want too much of the sweet stuff that surrounds the pecans, I just want all the pecans!  My Pecan Bar recipe has all the best parts of a pecan pie, without an overload of the sticky part of the filling.  It’s got a salty and sweet pecan mixture on top of a tender and buttery shortbread crust, and it’s delicious! (Read more…)

Mexican Caesar Salad

Mexican Caesar Salad 2

When my kids were little and we were living in San Diego, one of our favorite places to eat was El Torito.  I know, I know, we’re in San Diego, home to the best Mexican food in the world, why would we go to a chain restaurant?  This Mexican Caesar Salad (and their sweet corn cakes, but I’m still breaking the code on those)!  Even my then 3 year old daughter could finish off almost an entire bowl of this fantastic salad by herself!  Well, when we moved to New Jersey, El Torito was no longer an option, so I had to break it down for myself.  What results is, if memory serves, an incredible rendition of the best salad I ever ate!  (Read more…)

Blueberry Streusel Muffins

The internet is full of blueberry muffin  recipes.  I know, I’ve tried most of them.  I made my boss’ recipe for blueberry muffins every day for over a year.  I ate blueberry muffins from almost every bakery I went into, every brunch buffet I sidled up to, and every grocery store where I shopped.  I began to wonder if I really just didn’t like blueberry muffins 😢   But I was sure I did.  I mean, I like muffins and I like blueberries.  Hello?  I just had to figure out what I was looking for in a blueberry muffin and make it happen.   And I did.  Does the internet need another blueberry muffin recipe? Maybe not.  But it’s my blog and I’ll do what I want to. (p.s. did I say “blueberry muffin” enough times?)  (Read more…)

Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

Ranch Dressing is a classic.  There is even an actual Hidden Valley Ranch, where it was originally developed.  I’ve tried ranch dressing over the years.  It was fine, though kind of plastic tasting to me.  But Ranch Dressing was never something my Korean mom kept in the house.  As a matter of fact, I can’t remember my mom having very many American style condiments in our refrigerator.  We had soy sauce, and gochujang, and things soaking in solutions of soy sauce and gochujang.  I even remember fried Spam sandwiches on white bread with mayo that must have been stored somewhere.  But Ranch?  Nope.  So I never developed that All-American love of ranch dressing.  And neither did my kids.  Because I raised them like my mom raised me.  So, if I was going to serve Ranch Dressing, it wasn’t going to come out of, and taste like, a plastic bottle.  I was going to make it myself.  (Read more…)