Slow Cooked Short Rib Ragu Over Penne Pasta

 

Wow!  This Slow Cooked Short Rib Ragu over Penne Pasta will blow your mind!  We had dinner this weekend at a newer restaurant in our town called Locanda Ravello.  Honestly, I can’t get enough of the place.  It’s the kind of Italian restaurant where there is always a wood-fired pizza oven burning in the center of the restaurant, the staff speaks more Italian than English and every once in a while, if you’re lucky, they’ll break into song during your meal.  After being inspired by the special Short Rib pasta I ordered and how scrumptious it was, I needed to try to recreate it.  This is my version.

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Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

 

My sister-in-law Lisa is the one behind this recipe for these Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies.  Around our house, we call them “Lisa’s Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies”.  She loves to bake and every year when she and my brother come to visit for Christmas, she gets us all in the kitchen baking.  My daughter looks forward to it every year!  The cookies are delicious and the recipe is super simple and quick.  Lucky for us, she passed on her secret recipe…I’m pretty sure my daughter doesn’t even need the recipe to make them anymore because she’s made them so many times.

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Roasted Boneless Leg of Lamb

I was born in New Zealand and my dad’s side of the family all still live there.  My husband is half Greek.  Basically, our kids have no choice but to love lamb, it’s a double whammy!  This Roasted Boneless Leg of Lamb always reminds me of Christmas.  We usually have it on Christmas Eve at my mom’s house.  It’s funny, I grew up having it prepared this way by both my mom and dad, not sure who taught who, but it is clearly a Julia Child recipe for the marinade.  I will tell you this, I have found no better way to prepare any cut of lamb than with this recipe.

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Chicken Marsala

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Chicken Marsala is another classic that is so easy to make but tastes and looks beautiful on the plate.  Definitely do-able for a weeknight family style dinner or fancy enough for a weekend dinner party.  Pounding the chicken thin keeps in tender and cooking time is quick.

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Five Cheese Mac & Cheese

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That’s right….I said it…Five Cheese Mac & Cheese!  We were invited to a Halloween party last night and I volunteered to bring a Mac and Cheese dish.  Well, I couldn’t decide on which recipe I wanted to make…so I made two!  After returning from vacation where I was out of the kitchen for a week but filled with daily cooking inspiration, I jumped at the chance.  That may sound weird, but it is actually really tough for me to stay out of any kitchen!  So, this is the first one, stay tuned for the second, I’m sure it will surface soon.  Hint….it included bacon!

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French Onion Soup

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It is a rainy weekend here in the SF Bay Area, but after years of a bad drought, rain is always welcomed here.  Whether as an appetizer or it’s own meal, soup is perfect on a day like today.  It’s always cozy, warm and comforting…easy, cheesy French Onion Soup!

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Coq Au Vin

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Coq au Vin is a classic French dish of braising chicken with wine, mushrooms, garlic and bacon.  You can use bacon or pancetta, it’s a win-win either way, right?  Julia Child helped make this dish increasingly popular in the United States, it was often thought of as one of her signature dishes.  Red wine, specifically Red Burgundy is typically used, although you could always try it with a different varietal if you want.

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Roasted Vegetable Beef Stew

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Fall is in the air…football is on tv, temperatures are dropping, I hear some places are getting quite a bit of rain!  None for us here yet in the SF Bay Area but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t waiting anxiously for it.  I love cooking comfort foods, they are such a perfect weekend meal!  Roasted Vegetable Beef Stew is another great recipe you can put together during the day, let it simmer and it will be ready for you by the time dinner rolls around.  Plus, your house will smell wonderful, cozy and inviting. Continue reading →

Chicken Parmesan

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Chicken Parmesan is the ultimate classic comfort food and everyone has their own version…this is mine.  Now to the inspiration for my Chicken Parm.  I am not necessarily a huge fan of NFL football, however, during the season, it’s usually on at our house.  To me, this is also known as “background noise”…sorry, but it’s true.  Last year, after hearing months of Peyton Manning hum “Chicken Parm, you taste so good” during the Nationwide Insurance commercials, I was moved on more than one occasion to whip up a batch for the family. Continue reading →