Italian Wedding Soup

Italian Wedding Soup

Any excuse to make soup is okay with me.  So when my son was home sick the other day, I asked him what he’d like for dinner.  “Soup”, he replied in a sad, pitiful, scratchy whimper.  “The kind with the little meatballs in it, but not a spicy one”, he added.  I knew just what he was talking about as we’d had it about two months ago and he loved it.  Let’s face it-any soup with meatballs in it is going to be a hit kids. Although I’m sure this soup has been served at weddings the name actually comes from … Continue reading

Grilled Pizza Two Ways

Grilled pizza with arugula pesto

After desperately trying to avoid ordering pizza on my last post, yesterday pizza was exactly what I was in the mood for.  The weather was so wonderful that the thought of cooking them indoors just seemed wrong.  So the obvious choice was to grill them.  Now if you haven’t tried to grill your pizza you’re missing out.  First, they cook very fast and second, they get a nice smoked flavor that I just love.  The real trick to grilling pizza is about planning and having everything you need within reach.  You don’t want to be running into the house to … Continue reading

Creamy Orzo with ham and peas

Creamy Orzo with ham and peas

Some of the best recipes we home cooks come up with is when we’re pressed for time and didn’t make it to the grocery store.  Such was the case the other night as I found myself frantically trying to avoid the call for pizza delivery.  It was 5:30 pm, the phone had been ringing off the hook, kids were getting hungry and I was getting stressed.  Opening the refridgerator door and staring into the cavernous compartments revealed little that inspired.  Before making what seemed like the inevitible call, I decided to delve into my treacherous freezer once again.  Wow-two times in a … Continue reading

Turkey Meatballs

Turkey Meatballs

Everyone loves a good meatball.  Well, maybe not everyone but most do.  Just think how much better a good plate of spaghetti is with a hearty meatball along for the ride.  My family is no exception to this-they LOVE meatballs.  I’ve made them over the years using beef, sausage and veal in differing amounts, but a couple of years ago I was trying to lose weight and tried them using ground turkey.  I was expecting “yuck dad, what’s wrong with these” but got a completely different response.  They liked them far better with the turkey and from then on I’ve been … Continue reading

Overly Stuffed Shells

Overly Stuffed Shells

Years ago when I was looking for an alternative to lasagne, I went rumaging through the pasta isle at my local grocery store.  I was familiar with the normal spaghetti, penne, lasagna and macaroni product; but when I took a step back and really concentrated on the variety of pasta available I was taken aback.  The variety was HUGE.  When did this happen?  Just the other week it seemed there were merely a few to choose from and now I had to get a pasta dictionary just to figure out what all these were.  Was this some kind of marketing … Continue reading

Easy Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Easy Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Few side dishes can compare with simple, creamy mashed potatoes.  They’re the perfect compliment to most any meat.  Steak,braised short ribs, barbecued ribs, fried chicken, grilled chicken, roasted chicken, pork chops, pork roast and the list goes on forever.  The kids like it and adults do too.  But unfortunately when I have them at a restaurant, they’re often not creamy and buttery, but more like the taste of what I imagine eating cardboard would be.  The potatoes are on the plate merely as an afterthought.  Would it kill them to add a little flavor to the potatoes?  After all, they went through the … Continue reading