Tag Archives: Entertaining

Easy, Peasy Taste of Fall – Perfect For Dinner Any Day Of The Week

15 Nov

Perfect for cool outdoor weather, this dish is satisfying, flavorful, and optionally gluten-free!

If you enjoy lots of flavor, you’ll love this dish! This simple and delightful fall meal takes just minutes to prepare:


These brands are the ones I use for this easy fall dinner, but feel free to switch things up a bit depending on availability in your region or personal taste!

Main Dish:

–Spinach & Garlic chicken sausage by Bilinski. I buy it because it contains no pork casing – the fact that it’s delicious is a bonus!

–Pumpkin Parmesan Pasta sauce by Williams Sonoma.

–Ancient Grain Quinoa Pasta (any shape – I had elbows on hand). Feel free to substitute your favorite pasta.


–Fresh baby spinach.

–Apples (unpeeled). Gala or Honeycrisp both work well with this recipe.

–Walnut halves/pieces.

–Blue Cheese crumbles – use sparingly, as the flavor is very strong. Consider placing it in a separate small bowl, allowing your guests to help themselves.

–Olive oil vinaigrette dressing. (I like Newman’s Own).


–Grill sausage whole on medium-high for ~4-5 mins each side.

Quick tip: Opt for grilling the sausage earlier in the day and then refrigerate it until needed. Simply slice and warm the sausage along with your sauce while pasta is cooking.

–Cook pasta according to package directions.

–Warm Pumpkin Parmesan Pasta Sauce in a saucepan while pasta cooks.

–Chop apples and assemble the salad. Toss in olive oil dressing.

–Drain pasta and toss lightly in olive oil. Return to cooking pot (should be emptied of all cooking liquid), and toss with pasta sauce, coating evenly. Top with chicken sausage and fresh parmesan cheese.

For easy decorating, add a mini pumpkin to each dinner plate and toss a few leaves on your table.

Enjoy the flavorful taste of fall Around Your Home!

Summer Sweet Potatoes? Why Not!

26 Jun

Sweet potatoes are a terrific compliment to almost anything you prepare on your outdoor grill!

Sweet potatoes are an acquired taste for some people. I happen to love them – pretty much any way they are prepared.

Though traditionally served during Thanksgiving (U.S.) and Christmas, I enjoy this super-food year-round.

Sweet potatoes are a terrific compliment to almost anything cooked on the outdoor grill. They are loaded with Vitamins B, C, and D, potassium, magnesium, and have a low glycemic index (minimal impact on blood sugar).

Trouble is, I’ve not had luck preparing them “just right”. Until recently, when I surrendered my strong stance against owning a microwave oven.

So, if you like sweet potatoes, and you’re not opposed to the use of a microwave oven, read on for the quickest, and in my opinion, tastiest way to prepare them.  Continue reading

Make Your Own Fresh Pasta Sauce in 15 Minutes

19 Jun

Summer is a great time to cook outside. But when it’s too hot or too rainy, you can still enjoy the outdoor taste of summer indoors by making your own fresh pasta sauce.

It’s easy to do, and completely changes the flavor of your favorite pasta dish.

Just follow the simple recipe below: Continue reading

The Only Salad You’ll Ever Need To Make

12 Jun

The simple toss of a few ingredients in a light olive oil dressing will cause your guests to rave!

The title of this post is a bit of an exaggeration, but not by much.

This salad is my go-to side for dinner parties, whether I’m playing the role of host or guest. The main entree could have been slow-roasted for 24 hours in special seasoning salt that was trailered in, yet the guests can be heard going on and on about the salad!

I’ve been making this recipe for so long that I don’t even remember where I learned it or who from. It’s really simple and ridiculously good.

If you don’t like one of the ingredients, simply leave it out and your salad will still be super-tasty.


–Baby Romaine Lettuce

–Shaved or shredded parmesan cheese – 2 palmfuls

–Red onion – 1 palmful

–Walnut pieces (optional) – tip: give people the option to add their own by placing small bowls of walnut pieces around the table

Newman’s Own Olive Oil Vinaigrette or make your own vinaigrette. All you need is enough to lightly coat the salad, but not saturate it.

–Toss all ingredients and serve immediately.

That’s all there is too it. Bon appétit!

Aunt Pat’s Chicken: The Perfect Meal for Easy Entertaining

3 Apr

This easy and sure-to-please chicken dish is a modified twist on a recipe that my Aunt Pat shared with me several years ago. It’s a delicious, healthy, and inexpensive meal that is simply perfect for entertaining.

The best part about this dish is that you get to mingle with your guests while it bakes in the oven.

My Aunt Pat's Chicken Dish never disappoints!

The recipe as written is intended to serve 4 adults, so adjust the quantities and cookware to make larger portions if needed.


–4 split chicken breasts, leg quarters, or a whole cut-up broiler. Use bone-in chicken with the skin on. It’s easily removed after cooking and makes a huge difference in both the flavor and moisture level of the dish.

–5 to 7 medium red potatoes

–½ lb. of carrots (I typically buy a bag of peeled, cut baby carrots)

–1 whole onion

–5-7 cloves of garlic, peeled but not cut (use less if you’re not a big garlic fan – we love garlic Around My Home)

–1-2 lemons (depending on how much lemon you like)

Optional: 3-4 Fresh Rosemary twigs (I typically omit the Rosemary)

–Salt & Pepper to taste

–Extra Virgin Olive oil (drizzled)

–Couple of small pats of butter


Continue reading