Newest Post

More on the New Blog

The new blog started on January 1, 2019.  It is located here: February ?customize=3 ?customize=3 January ?customize=3 ?customize=3 ?customize=3

Moving the Blog (as of January 1, 2019)

I started the new year by moving my efforts to a new essentiallycooking website and blog. It is powered by Zenfolio. The new site/blog will have an index that will link back to the recipes here, until such time that I might move them from the old blog to the new blog... or I might not. The link to the new blog is: .  After landing on the new blog, you can use the links and tools in the sidebar to sign up for updates or access my Instagram feed. An RSS feed is also available should you collect your blog updates using a feedreader. The first recipe on the new blog is this one: Oatmeal, white chocolate, and craisin cookies

Meatloaf Burgers

As built by Laurie and cooked by Peter.  Recipe from Plain Chicken. I’ve decided that I like these meatloaf burgers better than just plain burgers.  It must be all the add-ins (mustard, Ketchup, and Worcestershire sauce, to name a few) that make them so tasty.  Cooking them on a charcoal grill also helped. Interestingly (to me), when I asked Laurie where the recipe came from and what modifications she made, she told me the list of ingredients came from (which I found interesting since this recipe uses beef) and that she had changed absolutely nothing on the list (the Plain Chicken recipe is here ).  That amazed me, as it rarely happens that way.  But I have to say, I don’t think the recipe needs any tweaking.  I’m looking forward to this becoming a summer “classic”. What is more classic than meatloaf? Browse the internet and you’ll find quite a variety of meatloaf burger recipes.  Some add onion, where this one adds onion powder.  Omitting real onio

Simple Salmon Cakes

As cooked by Laurie. Recipe from Eating Well with some variation. I’m not really much into eating fish… unless you count lobster, clams, shrimp, scallops, oysters and mussels.  But I don’t think they technically fit the definition, though “shellfish” does have the word “fish” in it. I have never even tried sushi.  (I even had to ask Laurie how to spell it right.  I was so far off that even spell check on my MacBook couldn’t help me.) But Laurie has two great salmon recipes and I love them both.  One is already posted here and uses Salmon fillets.  The other is this one: salmon cakes.   Like meatloaf.  Just mix everything in a bowl with your hands! Laurie starts with a recipe from the book Comfort Foods Made Healthy , by Eating Well. I tried to chase down the recipe online, but couldn’t find it, though there are many other salmon cake recipes that may be just as tasty or similarly simple. This is an easy salmon to use. Separate into four balls and

Baked Oatmeal Cups

As made by Laurie.  Recipe from without modification. I very much enjoyed the batch Laurie made, but I debated for a while whether to post information about these oatmeal cups. They look a lot like muffins.  That's the problem, because they don't taste like muffins. If you are anticipating a muffin that will rival a blueberry or lemon poppy-seed muffin, or some other sweet or cake-like muffin, this recipe will not do it for you. (Unlike a muffin, you will see that there is no flour in this recipe.) On the other hand, if you are interested in an easy or on-the-go breakfast alternative to a bowl of hot oatmeal, then this recipe might be for you. And I can tell you that two of these "cups" with a yogurt and a couple of servings of fruit can make a rather nice lunch. The recipe makes a dozen.  They freeze well, too.  Just take them out of the freezer the night before you plan to eat them.  Once thawed, I found that 15-30 seconds in

Happy Belated "National Chocolate Chip Day"

It's horrible!  I missed yesterday's National Chocolate Chip Day.  So, I figured I'd better celebrate today, belatedly, with a couple of these bad boys: Traditional Toll House cookies. With Mother's Day having been this past Sunday, Toll House cookies make me think of my mom, who frequently had batches coming out of the oven as my brother and I walked in the door from the school bus. It doesn't get much better than warm cookies and milk.  (I'll ignore the fact that she used "Crisco" because butter was too expensive.)

Roasted Cauliflower

As cooked by Laurie. This is such a simple way to cook cauliflower.  It takes just a few ingredients, a sheet pan and parchment paper, and the sprinkle of Parmesan cheese at the end we view as a requirement for great taste. Served for dinner with pan-cooked frozen pot stickers and spinach What you need: One head of cauliflower cut into florets 3 Tablespoons of olive oil Coarsely ground black pepper to taste Kosher salt Garlic Powder Parmesan cheese What to do: In a bowl, mix the cauliflower florets with the olive oil, pepper, salt, and garlic powder until the cauliflower is evenly covered. Spread the cauliflower mixture in one layer in a sheet pan that has been lined with parchment paper. Sprinkle grated parmesan cheese over the cauliflower. Cook in a preheated oven at 450F for about 20 minutes, until tender to a fork.

Turkey Meatloaf with Feta and Sun-dried Tomatoes

As cooked by Laurie. This is a colorful looking and tasty meatloaf that can be found at the  It's by Giada de Laurentiis. I've provided a link at the bottom. Meatloaf is one of my favorite meals.  In fact, last year when Laurie asked me what I wanted for my birthday dinner I chose meatloaf (not this recipe because we didn't know about it then), roasted potatoes and broccoli. As far as meatloaf goes we both scored this very high. I'd say it is one of the three best recipes for meatloaf that we have, and we have cooked many. At one point Laurie dubbed it a "Mediterranean Meatloaf" because of the feta cheese and sun-dried tomatoes. These photos show a few of the steps which I grabbed while Laurie put it all together for dinner: The sun-dried tomatoes and fresh parsley add nice color. The feta cheese pieces don't really melt when cooked, and so they look great within each slice. Everything has been added and mixed

Crock Pot Balsamic Pork Roast

As cooked by Laurie The modification Laurie made to this recipe from is to use 3 1/2 pounds of "boneless pork butt" instead of 2 pounds of "boneless port shoulder roast".  This is the cut of meat the butcher recommended, plus the meat was priced at $1.79 per pound. That's about $6 for this 3 1/2 pound roast! I really enjoy tender meat that falls apart when you touch it with a fork.  Laurie could barely get it out of the crock pot because it kept falling apart as it was pulled out of the juice in the crockpot. She served in over mashed potato and with roasted cauliflower as the side dish. 3 1/2 pound boneless pork butt After 8 hours Meat was removed from the crockpot and any large veins of fat were removed and discarded To keep the meat warm and moist until the rest of the dinner  was ready, it was placed back into the crock pot full of  flavorful liquid and broth. Ready to be served!  (Just a portion... th

Turkey Sausage, White Bean, Carrots, Spinach, and Butternut Squash Soup

As cooked by Laurie This is one of our favorite winter soups.  Laurie has made it a lot.  The recipe is actually a Weight Watchers recipe.  It is hard for me to believe that something with sausage in it, and would taste so good, would be a weight watchers recipe, but so be it. The combination of the sausage and the butternut squash is what makes it so very tasty in my book.  The broth is so yummy. You will see in the recipe instructions at the bottom of the post that Laurie has added carrots and spinach to the original recipe.  Plus she has an idea for making it a bit thicker.  Both of us like thick soup, rather than just broth with a few food items floating around in it. Photos below are random grab shots, in order: Saute chopped onions Remove casing from sausage Sausage added to onions Sausage sauteed in onions Butternut Squash These are the beans we had in the pantry.  Recipe calls for 19 ounce cans, but Laurie has been unable to find