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Showing posts from June, 2011

To Die For Blueberry Muffins

***Don't you just absolutely love waking up on a weekend to the smell of something delicious baking in the oven?  A few days after my recent surgery, my sister - Suzanne - got up early and baked these A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. blueberry muffins.  Honestly, one of my favorite moments during the week my two sisters were staying with us was being woken up by the wonderfully scrumptious smell of these muffins slowly wafting into my bedroom.  That sort of thing just makes you feel super loved and taken care of.  :) It's actually really funny, because when Suzanne was looking for a blueberry muffin recipe the night before, she picked this recipe before realizing I already had it on my blog.  I guess great minds think  It's not often that I post the same recipe twice, but these muffins are worth the extra attention.  They bake up nice and big, are packed with beautiful blueberries, and the cinnamon-sugar crumble on top makes these unforgettable.  I bet you never thought a sim

Chunky Chicken Noodle Soup - A Perfect Post-Surgery Meal!

***Folks, it's been quite a week around our house.  It all started last Friday when I had laparoscopic surgery.  Even though it was considered a pretty minor surgery, I was still REALLY nervous.  This was the first time that I had ever been put under general anesthesia, so I was extremely uncertain about that whole concept.  Luckily, I was blessed with an amazing team of doctors and nurses, and everything went perfectly. The day after my surgery, Brad had a serious kidney stone attack.  He ended up in the ER later that day, and was eventually scheduled for surgery a few days later.  Fortunately, his surgery also went well. So, after making it through two surgeries in one week, we are both recovering well...thank goodness!  I mean, WHAT ARE THE ODDS?  I still can't believe we both had surgery within a six day period. I don't know what we would have done without my little sisters here to help us through this terrible week.  They were like 2 angels sent to us to help

Fresh Cherry & Peach Tart

***I know it's officially summer when fresh, juicy peaches abound at all the farmers markets and groceries stores.  Piled high into perfectly peachy piles, I can't possibly pass by them without stowing a few away in my grocery cart.  This tart is a beautiful way to show off the season's prettiest fruit.   When my sisters were recently in town, one of Maranne's main missions was to find a tart pan, so we made a trip to Williams-Sonoma so that she could purchase a pan like my own.  This recipe is the first one she tried when she got home, and the photo of her Blueberry-Peach Tart was so delicious-looking that I had to try it too!   She emailed the recipe to me, and within minutes I was in the kitchen!  One of the only changes that I made was substituting the fresh blueberries for cherries.  Now, I don't have something against blueberries, in fact they are one of my favorites!  The truth is, I didn't have any fresh blueberries on-hand, so I had to use cherries

Fresh Orange, Coconut & Pecan Cake

  ***Every year, Brad's mom gives me a new "birthday cake challenge" for her birthday.  This year, she requested a cake that combined orange, pecan and coconut flavors.  It sounded like a perfectly decadent cake for these hot summer days, so I was excited for the new challenge. I searched the internet and my collection of cookbooks for inspiration.  I came across THIS recipe over at "Your Homebased Mom" and thought it looked like the perfect place to start.  It even won a blue ribbon at a fair once, so it sounded really promising! The only change that I made was to the icing.  The original recipe already included wonderful orange flavors, but the coconut and pecans still needed to make an appearance somehow.  I added both the shredded coconut and pecans directly into the icing recipe.   The pecans ended up really making this cake over-the-top delicious.  They brought the entire cake together, and the combination of flavors was incredible. My sisters, Suzan

Maranne's Chicken Pot Pie + A Debut Video!

***I don't know about you, but it seems like some of my favorite memories have always involved food somehow.  Whether it be baking up Christmas goodies with my Grandmother as a child, with a chair pushed up to the counter so that I could reach...Or walking into my GrannyRene's house and being greeted by the smell of fresh field peas and Chicken & Dumplings as soon as my feet crossed the threshold (I can smell it now!)...Or studying at the local coffee shop in high school, surrounded by my best friends and our favorite Frozen Mochas and pastries, to get us through the countless hours of cramming for exams...Or meeting and falling in love with my future husband at Joe Muggs Coffeehouse, while whipping up delicious cappuccinos and lattes for our caffeine-seeking customers...Or trying to learn how to cook as a young bride for said husband, spending many hours in the kitchen learning my way around souffles, dutch ovens, and the hundreds of ways to prepare a simple chicken bre