Chicken Parmesan Meatballs

Hi guys! I hope everyone is feeling a little bit less stressed than they were a couple weeks ago. I, for one, was feeling really great… until I asked Siri how long it was until Christmas. He (my Siri sounds like Hugh Grant) told me it’s only 37 days away. I was completely gobsmacked by that response (Hugh taught me that word). The only thing I’ve done in preparation for the holidays is to put up my Christmas tree. I decided to do it much earlier than I usually do, but I think a lot of us have decided it’s high time we added some joy to 2020.

The other thing I’ve been doing is seeing how many meals I can meatball. What? Yes, I’ve once again taken a meal that isn’t a meatball, and meatballed it. First there was my Chicken Piccata Meatballs (my most popular recipe to date!), coming soon are my Thai Coconut Curry Meatballs, and today I’m bringing you the recipe for my Chicken Parmesan Meatballs! Why? Because it’s 2020 and rules no longer apply. Anything can happen. Murder Hornets can be immortal and I can meatball an entire meal. How? (Read more…)

Ham and Swiss Buttermilk Biscuits

Hello biscuit fans and biscuit fans-to-be! I have created a variation on my Buttermilk Biscuit recipe that will get even those on the biscuit fence excited. Being a Southern Girl at heart (and by birth in Chattahoochee County, Georgia), it’s in my DNA to love biscuits, but it was the work of most-of-a-lifetime to get the recipe just right. And what do I do when I think I’ve mastered something? Mess with it, of course. Like most of my pandemic-era recipes, this new biscuit was developed when I wanted to make something for my family, in this case for breakfast, without having to go to the store. I looked in the refrigerator that morning and saw just a bit of leftover ham and Swiss cheese (not enough for even one sandwich) and that was all it took. These beauties were born. (By the way, no one understands how my brain works. Not even me. Science is baffled.)

These Ham and Swiss Buttermilk Biscuits are amazing on their own, or slathered in Sausage Gravy (hey, we all need more protein after 8 months indoors). Don’t let the idea of biscuit making intimidate you. With simple ingredients and simple directions, you’re going to make something amazing! (Read more…)

Chicken Piccata Meatballs

First of all, I love chicken. I know, I know. A lot of people think chicken is boring, and that can be true. But fried or roasted, smothered or skewered, I really love chicken. And if a classic roasted chicken with lemon is good enough for Ina and Jeffrey, who are we to judge? Seriously. Adding the refreshing, acidic punch of lemon to my beloved chicken dinner? I swoon. No really, I’m actually in danger of swooning just thinking about it right now.

I don’t even know where my love of lemon chicken originated. I mean, as I’m sitting here writing this, I pause, wracking my brain, and I cannot think of when was the first time I had any type of lemon chicken. It certainly didn’t come from the Korean side of my family. And if my grandma Olga Mae did anything with lemons, it was probably in the form of a dessert (helloooo lemon pound cake). I can only guess it must have been at some Italian-American Banquet Hall function in New Jersey, when I first met my husband’s family. Silver rows of massive chafing dishes filled to the brim with steaming stacks of Chicken Française (Fran-cay-see in New Jersey speak) or Chicken Piccata. Can you picture it? The velvet-lined walls, for whatever reason? Classic Jersey Italian stuff. Wherever it was that my tastebuds first met lemon chicken, it quickly became a love everlasting. Swoon with me. Ahh. Over the years I have played around with various lemon chicken recipes, and I make a pretty great Chicken Piccata, but lately I’ve been seeing people turning a lot of things that aren’t meatballs into meatballs and I thought “Why not?” So, let’s make some lemon chicken meatballs! (Read more…)

Garlic Butter Naan

It’s the last day of Summer y’all and I’m finally finishing my Mediterranean Dinner series. We started with my Greek Chicken Skewers with Tzatziki Sauce, accompanied that with my Greek Salad with Herb Marinated Feta, and we’re going to “wrap” it all up in my Garlic Butter Naan. Wrap it up. Get it? I’m cracking up… I mean, I crack myself up 😳 (2020… ) I know, I know, Garlic Butter Naan is not a true Mediterranean flatbread (Hello Iran and India), but it’s the one I like the most. I use it instead of pita, in place of tortillas, and cover it in pizza toppings. I think once you try making my Garlic Butter Naan for yourself, you’ll find yourself making it naanstop.   (Read more…)

Italian Frittata

Frittatas are one of the most deceptive weapons I have in my culinary arsenal. They look super fancy and never fail to impress, but no one needs to know that they can be easily made from almost anything you have in your pantry. A kind of ‘Choose your own adventure” – with eggs! You can take almost any savory flavor combination and frittata-cize it, like the frittata I based on my favorite bagel combination. This morning I decided to riff off of a frittata I used to make when I worked in a pastry shop: an Italian frittata with Italian sausage, sautéed veggies, and double the cheese for double the flavor (Read more… )

Chicken Chilaquiles Verdes

I grew up in San Antonio, Texas and lived for many years in San Diego and I never once came across the common Mexican breakfast of chilaquiles. How did that (not) happen? The first time I had ever even heard of the dish was when I was watching The Best Thing I Ever Ate on Cooking Channel. Marcella Vallodolid described chilaquiles she ate at Talavera Azul in Chula Vista, Ca (a town where where I once lived) and I was obsessed. Tortilla chips for breakfast? Tortilla chips bathed in a zingy tomatillo salsa with chicken and cheese? Tortilla chips FOR BREAKFAST?! So obsessed was I, that most of a vacation that The Boy and I recently took to San Diego centered around going to the same restaurant and eating the same chilaquiles as Marcella. True story.

Today, The Boy and I are 2,807 miles away from the Chicken Chilaquiles Verdes of our (my) dreams and I have no choice but to recreate them. The recipe is easier than you’d think and can be on the table in 60 minutes, start to finish. Let’s do this!  (Read more… )

Cajun Salmon Pasta

I just realized that, since the beginning of the pandemic, I’ve only posted one non-baked good, and it was a big pan of Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes with Ham. That’s crazy! I’m more than baked goods! I am also all the other carbs!  Like this recipe for Cajun Salmon Pasta. It starts out sounding healthy (cuz y’know, salmon) and then BAM 💥 PASTA! But let’s be honest for a second, things are whacked out right now. I will worry about my relationship with carbs later. Or not. But, right now, we all just want to eat something that will fill this empty hole where normal life used to be. That’s healthy, right? I think so! Seriously, this is a (generally) healthy meal, with a zip of spice, all those Omega-3 fatty acids everyone is raving about… and some noodles. Doesn’t that sound nice? Yes, yes it does.  (Read more…)

Skillet Cornbread


Cornbread holds a special place in my heart for a few reasons. I went to elementary school in San Antonio, where the cafeteria would serve cornbread the way rest of the country served plain bread.  I also grew up the grandchild of Olga Mae from Noxubee County Mississippi, who made Skillet Cornbread almost every day of her life.  The best part of her Skillet Cornbread was a not so well kept secret in the South – bacon fat.  Olga Mae, like most resourceful Southern women of her time, kept a coffee can full of bacon fat on her kitchen counter that found its way into most of the foods she cooked, especially her Skillet Cornbread.  Why buy butter or oil when you get bacon fat for free every time you cook bacon?  So when I think of my Ultimate Skillet Cornbread, it has to include bacon fat. I’m not saying anyone should go on an all bacon fat diet, just don’t throw it away the next time you cook a few slices.  There’s a cornbread waiting to bake (Read more…)

Seared Salmon in Lemon Dill Cream Sauce

I don’t recall eating a lot of fish in my childhood.  I know I had fried catfish when I visited Grandma Olga Mae in Mississippi.  I remember my brother and I lying that we caught some rainbow trout in Yellowstone (we paid a guy five bucks for his) and our mom cooking it.  I also recall my mom catching a bucket full of sun perch in Canyon Lake, Texas when I was a kid, but I think I was too traumatized by her killing them by hitting their heads on a rock to remember  if I ate any.  So yeah, other than whatever fish they use in the Fish and Chips at Long John Silvers, I really don’t remember a lot of fish in my life.

And then I moved to Oregon and ate salmon.  Oh my, The Salmon.  My gateway fish.  The fish that opened the the flood gates for fish to enter my life.  And still my absolute favorite fish to cook and eat.  This recipe is kind of an homage to the Parmesan Baked Salmon  my oldest daughter loved from The Mesquitery in Hood River, Oregon.  It’s lightened up with lemon juice and fresh herbs, but I think she’ll like it.  I think you will too! (Read more…)

Mini Cast Iron Dutch Babies

I love breakfast.  I really, really do.  Sometimes I want something savory, like biscuits and gravy or anything with bacon.  Sometimes I want something sweet, like pancakes or waffles (and also bacon).  One problem:  when I wake up, I usually just want my cup of coffee and breakfast to magically materialize in front of me.  Don’t get me wrong, I love to cook.  You know this about me.  But there are those mornings, you know the ones, where it would sure be awesome to have someone to take care of those little details for you.  Well, these fluffy Dutch babies are a compromise.   Dusted with powdered sugar and filled with citrus marinated fruit, they take only 10 minutes of hands-on time and bake up in a mere 20 minutes.  They’re also easy enough for someone else to make for you, and they take just enough time for you to drink enough coffee to make you… nice to be around.  (Read more…)