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Once summer arrives we pretty much abandon our oven and move most of the cooking out to our grill – especially since we’ve moved to our house and upgraded our grill. We have started a new weekly tradition of making our own pizzas – usually on Friday nights just like I did with my own family growing up. When my friends at Peapod asked me to come up with a fun new grilling recipe, I knew I had to focus on pizza. Pizza on the grill has so many advantages: it cooks fast, the crust gets crispy, and the cheese and toppings get that perfect golden brown. We use an inexpensive pizza stone and experiment with all sorts of different recipes. read more

Do you ever get that feeling of summer-guilt? It’s when it’s so incredibly nice and warm outside, and you have that pang in your gut that says you should really be at the beach or drinking outside on a patio or going for a walk somewhere with a nice breeze. I that feeling this weekend. I think it happens in New England particularly because summer is so fleeting here. A mere 8 weekends, 9 or 10 if we’re really lucky, of that warm air and sunshine that passes by so quickly we feel guilty if we don’t take advantage of every second of it. read more

Remember my little farmer’s market weekly challenge I shared as part of my summer bucket list? Week one was a partial sucess: I didn’t make it to our farmer’s market because I’ve been spending some time at my parent’s house in New York. I did, however pop into their great gourmet grocery store and scoop up a ton of bright, fresh local produce to experiment with for my little challenge. My parents are on a health kick, so they were happy to be my taste-testers for a new veggie based recipe, and I was delighted to get to use their brand stove with a built in griddle burner to cook for them. I charred up sweet summer corn, peeled carrots strands, zucchini slices and a bit of red pepper on the griddle before tossing it with a homemade vinaigrette and fresh green onions. read more

I’m so excited that Memorial Day is coming up soon, because it means that summer activities like beach days and picnics and barbeques aren’t far behind. Those summer cookouts are at the top of my to-do list when the warm weather arrives, because there’s nothing better than a casual backyard gathering with all the tasty BBQ classics. read more

I have a mental arsenal of our weeknight dinner recipes; they’re so engrained in my head I never think to actually write them down. My friends at Peapod asked me if I had any easy recipes that I’m leaning on as a new mom with a busy schedule, and I knew just the one to share. It’s a quick and easy turkey burger, packed with flavor from BBQ sauce, spicy hot sauce, and chopped up scallions. read more

Every year at Christmas our family friends serve these amazing meatballs as an appetizer at their annual holiday party. It’s one of my favorite food traditions, and I was thinking about how delicious they were recently. I got the idea in my head to rethink the flavors in this tasty appetizer and give them a warm-weather spin to serve at summer parties. We’re huge fans of spicy food at my house, and drizzle hot sauce on just about anything we can get our hands on, and adding some heat to a meatball appetizer seemed like just the perfect idea. read more

I have been driving past our local nursery this week to scope out all of the gorgeous flowers that are out for Mother’s Day. Fittingly, gardens remind me of both my mom and my mother-in-law. When I was growing up my mom had a flower garden that ran alongside our house. All of my favorite flowers like snapdragons, black-eyed Susans and pansies were planted there each year. My mother-in-law has the greenest thumb of anyone I’ve ever met and when we gift her flowers for Mother’s Day she keeps them alive all summer long. I, on the other hand, struggle to keep a cactus alive. I love flowers but gardening is certainly my weakest domestic skill. You know what I’m really good at though? Mixing up cocktails.  read more

Cinco de Mayo a is pretty big celebration in our family because it happens to be my little sister’s birthday. We call it Cinco de Mara (she’s really lucky her name works so well in that pun), and since she’s been old enough to drink margaritas we’ve been fiesta-ing like there’s no mañana on the 5th of May. It just so happens that margaritas are one of her favorite drinks, too – how perfect! In celebration prep for this festive fiesta of a holiday, I’ve been thinking about some spins on the classic margarita to add to my repertoire.  read more

Growing up, a big tray of savory Italian Strata was a brunch staple; my Mom would make a variation of this for just about every holiday. It’s an awesome recipe for two reasons: 1) It’s a great way to use leftover bread that might be a little bit past its prime – crusty bread works great, and 2) you can make this recipe the night before and pop it in the oven in the morning. read more

Friday night pizza was always a tradition in my house growing up; a large cheesy New York pizza with the best toppings and usually a few garlic knots or “pizza rolls” made an appearance to close out the week. I wish we had pizza here like we do back home where I grew up in New York, I love living in Massachussetts but pizza, bagels and good delis are all things you just can’t replicate here. Lately, I have been picking up that tradition and making my own pizzas on our pizza stone as a little Friday evening treat. It’s no New York slice, but I experiment a bit each week and have been getting better at making a quality pizza at home. Last week I was scanning the fridge and doing a survey of leftover ingredients to see what I could make for a quick meal, and lots of my pizza toppings were stacked up begging for a little love. read more