My garden is just starting to produce a few of my favorite spring-summer ingredients — the basil plants are looking robust and my English peas are climbing the trellises. I’m jumping on the opportunity to pluck the basil and blend up a batch of simple, fragrant homemade pesto sauce with a twist — this version has peas blended into the sauce as well as tossed whole with al dente pesto-coated pasta. The benefit of pesto is that even loosely following a recipe will yield good results, you can always play around with proportions and it’ll almost always taste good! Mix it with any pasta shape of your choice, I love these long curly fusilli that capture the pesto and peas in each twist of the fork. Get the full recipe below: read more

I am feeling so hopeful that some al fresco entertaining is in my near future with all of my friends and family on their way to be vaccinated. You better believe this party-loving-extrovert is going to be ready to host once it’s safe again! I’m honing my cocktail skills (tough work!) to get ready, and this Blackberry-Ginger Moscow Mule is going straight to the top of my menu when it’s time to gather again. It’s seriously crisp and refreshing, perfect for sipping around a picnic table on a warm summer night, and an ideal way to use up juicy farmer’s market blackberries. Get the recipe below:  read more

Now that grilling season is back in swing, I’ve been revisiting my favorite recipes and this simple grilled shrimp dish is a perennial favorite (it’s adapted from my cookbook New England Invite!). The fresh citrus and garlic flavors that pair so well with grilled seafood flavors, and just a hint of paprika adds a fragrant peppery note. read more

A big hearty breakfast sandwich is the way to my heart, and I made a special, savory cheddar waffle version in partnership with EatingWell magazine for their May issue to get inspired for Mother’s Day brunches. The waffles are full of the flavorful Kerrygold Reserve Cheddar, made with milk from grass-fed cows that are raised on small, family-run Irish dairy farms. I used more of the cheddar to melt in between fried eggs and crispy bacon — the best ingredients make for the best tasting dishes. Get the full recipe below, and catch it in the EatingWell issue on newsstands now! read more

Over the last few years, I’ve put a big focus on reducing food waste at our house. Being a food writer and stylist, there are weeks when we have a veryrandom assortment of leftovers and ingredients from various client projects taking up space in our fridge. I’ve developed lots of little tricks to make the most of what’s on hand to reduce the amount of food waste we create. It’s a great way to save money, but more than that, it’s better for the environment. The EPA estimates that in the United States, more food reaches landfills than any other single material in our everyday trash. And when food decomposes in landfills the nutrients in the food never return to the soil — the wasted food rots and produces methane gas. read more

A quick batch of hand-cut sweet potato fries are a go-to side dish for weeknight dinners, and I love to serve them with a chili-lime dip made with tasty sour cream. The sour cream is a perfect balance for the heat in the dip and I’ve even been known to add a little bit to the top of my burger bun for extra flavor too! A few secrets for getting the fries super crispy: dust them with corn starch before baking, space them out on the pan to so they have room to crisp, and wait to season them with salt until after they’re fully cooked! Get the recipe below: read more

If there is one dessert that is essential in our house, it’s a classic Rice Krispy treat! We make them all year round and I’m always thinking of creative ways to dress them up with seasonal flair for the holidays. With Easter coming up, I thought I’d make a batch with my classic recipe and top them some wow-factor — crushed Cadbury mini eggs and cute little carrot sprinkles. They look so colorful and festive, and the chocolate addition on top is a winner for the taste buds. Get the full recipe below! read more

Let me tell you about the refreshing spring cocktail I’ve been enjoying on repeat lately! I set out to make a Negroni a few weeks ago, only to realize I was out of Campari. After some research on Negroni variations, I came across a recipe for The Contessa, which swaps Campari for and orangey Aperol and dry vermouth for sweet in the classic Negroni. I have been making a riff on this, garnished with orange slices and topped with soda water (orange seltzer works too!) as my weekend treat. The bright colors and fragrant citrus make it such a nice drink for spring and summer months — get the full recipe below:  read more

This post was sponsored by King’s Hawaiian as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.

One of my first jobs as a teenager was working at a gourmet butcher shop in our little town. It had an old school vibe, and I spent most of my time refilling the bakery cookie displays and ringing up customers. One of the butchers that worked behind the counter used to go out back at lunch time and grill steaks. They’d get sliced thin and layered on toasty bread with melted provolone and the same garlic-herb butter that they used to make garlic bread. I think about those sandwiches all the time, and have recreated it at home ever since. This version is made with the same simple ingredients and gets layered between irresistible slices of KING’S HAWAIIAN® Original Sweet Sliced Bread. read more

I’ve got a tasty new recipe for homemade Honey Oat Granola Bars to share today in partnership with my friends at EatingWell Magazine and The National Honey Board! These are an easy snack made with pantry staples and simply sweetened with honey. Everyone in my family loves them; you just may want to make a double-batch because they go fast! Get the full recipe below: read more