Shirley’s Favorite Snickerdoodles with Cinnamon Toast Crunch Topping

Sweet Snickerdoodle SensationShirley’s Favorite Snickerdoodles with Cinnamon Toast Crunch Topping Dessert Snickerdoodles are one of Tom’s favorite cookies, and when I came across a snickerdoodle recipe that rolled the cookies in Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal …. Whaaat? We immediately purchased a box of cereal to try, but we ate it before I could get to the cookies. How have I never tried this cereal before? Crunchy cinnamon perfection! Now all I needed was the perfect Snickerdoodle recipe to go with the Cinnamon Toast Crunch Topping. Which brings me to a former co-worker, Shirley. She shared two snickerdoodle recipes, but said this one was her favorite. And although Shirley retired years ago, when you mention her snickerdoodles everyone’s eyes light up … Read more…

Peach and Pancetta Risotto

Peachy Keen RisottoPeach and Pancetta Risotto Side or Main It was nearing the end of peach season in early September, and since I had two ripe peaches calling my name, I wanted a new way to utilize one of our favorite fruits for dinner. Tom and I were in the mood for risotto (which is often), so I decided to toss them in at the end and … Wow! Good choice. Risotto is a go-to meal at our house, either alone or as a side dish depending on how hungry we are. Our current favorite combination is shallots and orange zest (when in season in late fall and winter, Cara Cara are our favorites). Risotto combinations are endless. I’m thinking … Read more…

Dijon Panko-Crusted Baked Salmon

Salmon Chanted EveningDijon Panko-Crusted Baked Salmon Main As I may have mentioned before, we don’t eat a lot of seafood here in MaiTai Tracy’s Kitchen, we leave that to long time traveling companion Mary (seen here at a fish feast when we visited Croatia).We did dine on plenty of clam chowder along with fish and chips on our trip to Oregon, plus we have been enjoying copious amounts of ahi tuna rolls lately, so maybe our horizons are broadening? When I saw this on Food Network claiming to be the best baked salmon recipe, I thought what the heck, sounds pretty good, and we really need to eat more fish. Brush the salmon with Dijon mustard, pat on a layer … Read more…

Baked Beans with Chipotle and Bacon

Bountiful Beans Baked Beans with Chipotle and Bacon Side Years ago we tasted the best baked beans with friends Kevin and Melissa. Kevin’s grandma’s baked bean recipe, which is a spin on Carolina Barbecue Beans using three kinds of beans: baked beans in tomato sauce, red kidney beans and green lima beans are terrific. Green lima beans? Yes! This three bean combo is amazing. Grandma also tossed in bacon and cheese for good measure. Carolina Barbeque Bean recipes usually call for a can of pork and beans, which in the U.S. are made with brown sugar and molasses, resulting in a sweeter sauce. Grandma’s recipe specifically called for baked beans in tomato sauce, which is a total British thing. While … Read more…

Potato Salad with Lemon, Rosemary & Pancetta

Piquant Potato SaladPotato Salad with Lemon, Rosemary & Pancetta Soup and Salad When it comes to potatoes, there aren’t many tuber techniques we won’t at least try once.  That includes one that has become a summer side favorite over the years … Potato Salad with Lemon, Rosemary & Pancetta.  This potato salad pairs perfectly with everything from Spicy Buttermilk Fried Chicken to Mr. C’s Grilled Flank Steak. Try to use a Meyer lemon, which has a nice sweet, lemony flavor that you won’t get from a regular lemon. We are fortunate that the neighbor’s lemon tree hangs over into our yard, providing Meyer lemons for most of the year. As for the rosemary, if you have room in your garden … Read more…

Spicy Black Bean Burgers with Guacamole and Cilantro Slaw

Marvelous Meatless BurgerSpicy Black Bean Burgers with Guacamole and Cilantro Slaw Main With meatless burgers becoming more and more popular, I decided to try these burgers for a meatless Monday.  Although Tom is a registered meat-aholic, he was on board with my experiment, because he likes beans and also acknowledged that we should try to eat a little healthier. This recipe from Southern Living calls for baking the beans first to dehydrate them and then refrigerating the patties before cooking so they don’t crumble when cooked. Sounded good to me! I followed the recipe exactly the first time and they were good, but I knew they could be better. I am currently obsessed with Trader Joe’s Italian Bomba Hot Pepper … Read more…

Scrambled Eggs, Bacon and Cheddar Breakfast Crescent Roll Ring

Bringing Home The Bacon … and Eggs … and Cheese Scrambled Eggs, Bacon and Cheddar Breakfast Crescent Roll Ring Breakfast After salivating over a Kerrygold ad that featured an egg crescent ring dish, I emailed Kerrygold and they sent me the recipe together with some coupons! I had not tried either of the sweet cheddar cheeses called for in the recipe — Dubliner and Skellig — but they were both so good we will be adding them to our charcuterie platters from now on. The Skellig is “produced with milk from grass-fed cows that graze on the green lush pastures of Ireland. Kerrygold Skellig is for the real cheese lover; it delivers exceptional flavor – rich and tangy, with a … Read more…

Strawberry Balsamic Bruschetta on Cinnamon Sugar Crostini

Sweet Strawberry StarterStrawberry Balsamic Bruschetta on Cinnamon Sugar Crostini Starter Here is a recipe I came across in one of my favorite food magazines, Fine Cooking. With flowers blooming and strawberry season pumping into high gear, this would be the perfect appetizer at that Mother’s Day brunch you’re hosting for your mom this year. So happy to SEE everyone at last! What sets this recipe apart is the cinnamon sugar crostini. Toast the baguette slices in the broiler for one minute. Take them out to cool and then spread the other side with the cinnamon sugar butter … Yes, cinnamon sugar butter! Return to the broiler for one more minute until the toast is bubbling and golden brown. Don’t walk … Read more…

Mr. C’s Strawberries Armagnac

A Berry Boozy Dessert Mr. C’s Strawberries Armagnac Dessert Just when I thought I didn’t have any more recipes from my late stepfather Mr. C, I rediscovered this delicious way to serve those gorgeous strawberries that are just coming into season. I love the first berries of spring as they are so big and juicy, and ooze strawberry deliciousness. There is a lot of booze in this recipe, and I do not have a substitute for any of it, so I would not serve this to any of the under-21 set. (You don’t need to use the bottle of cognac below that we were told by a server cost $3,000 at the bar in Le Château Frontenac in Quebec City … Read more…

Guinness Chocolate Pudding with Irish Whiskey Whipped Cream

The Proof Is More Than In The PuddingGuinness Chocolate Pudding with Irish Whiskey Whipped Cream Dessert Here is a recipe I found on BBC Goodfood, which uses rich dark chocolate and Guinness stout. Guinness is Tom’s favorite beer, and I love chocolate! It seemed like a good recipe to attempt for St. Patrick’s Day. I think it is better than lava cake … light, yet super chocolatey that falls somewhere between a brownie and a truffle … Wow! I combined a bar of Lindt 85% cocoa dark chocolate with a Lindt dark chocolate sea salt bar. The Lindt flavored dark chocolates are only 47% cocoa so be sure to use at least one bar of the 70% or greater. Next … Read more…