In The Kitchen

April 4, 2020

Rumaki Appetizer



Hello Love!

We hope you're well and finding a bit of beauty in your days.  Here's a new bit of goodness we're sending along with love from the countryside. xxx

This is our absolute favorite appetizer. And I would say our signature bring-to-any-gathering app. It disappears in minutes. Kids and adults love it.
Our 4 boys beg for it. Not kidding. Over the years we've made lots of changes as to how we make it, this is our current fave.
If you want to make these even more interesting, try the Devils On Horseback version. It's a date stuffed with blue cheese then wrapped in
bacon. We use the same sauce and sometimes do half and half for parties, holidays etc.
This recipe is also fabulous with a piece of cooked liver alongside the water chestnut, bacon wrapped and using same sauce.
These are a great make-ahead, pop-back-in-the-oven-to-heat-and-serve option. As for me, a plate of these with a salad and a glass of wine is dinner!

Makes approximately 50 appetizers

Arrange bacon side-by-side a parchment-covered sheet pan.
Place bacon in cold oven and heat to 425, cooking for 12-15 minutes.
Remove bacon from oven, let cool, then cut each piece in half.
Wrap each water chestnut with a half piece of bacon, and secure with a toothpick.
Arrange each wrapped chestnut on a parchment covered sheet pan.
Place back in oven for 12 minutes or until bacon looks brownish.
Place cooked chestnuts on paper towel to absorb remaining grease and place into a oven-safe baking dish.
Mix ketchup, brown sugar and soy sauce together with a tablespoon of garlic powder and a pinch or two of Italian seasoning.
Coat the wrapped chestnuts with sauce and place back in 425 degree oven for 15 minutes or until bubbling.

2 cans whole water chestnuts
1 cup ketchup
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 1/2 lbs bacon
garlic powder
Italian seasoning

March 5, 2020

Big Ol' Griddle Sandwiches


At least once a week we make big ol' griddled sandwiches - crowd pleasers matter when you have four teenage boys who eat as much as ours do.
This is one of those dinners that's super easy and if there are leftovers, they don't last long the next day. A vegan version of this would be fabulous, but our boys like meat in their sandwiches so we go for it and layer things up.
These are incredibly satisfying, and while I'm not a huge sandwich person, I cannot resist these. I often make an aioli and slather it on thick; it's usually Gus who asks for that as he scoots his way out the door for basketball practice, knowing he's coming home to these beauties. But mayo and mustard do the trick, too. Or, thousand island...oh...better yet: blue cheese dressing!! ...yeah perfect.
There's no wrong way to concoct a hearty sandwich. For us it sort of comes down to what's on hand. We often add leftovers into these, if there are any. This is one dinner we make that many of you have seen in our stories, and have asked for a video. Hope you enjoy it!
Cheers + love from our country kitchen to yours!

February 12, 2020

Smashed Potatoes

When the two of us get in the kitchen to cook good food and make cocktails the video can go a bit long.  Making good food that our four boys swoon over is no question one of our favorite things to do. We also love to entertain, and swoon-worthy bites are a must! These easy-to-make smashed potatoes always win.  We make them often and change the toppings on a regular basis. You can make them fanciful as we do for our Christmas Eve fete, when we top them with crème fraîche and caviar, or make them crowd-pleaser style as we're sharing in this recipe. Give yourself the freedom to try all sorts of toppings and combinations. I told John the other day I was craving these with a chunk of lobster and a nice aioli.  Can you stand it?What are you going to top yours with when you make them?
Cheers and love from the countryside!

(Click HERE to download a PDF of the recipe)

February 6, 2020

Pot Pie

A good old fashioned homemade pot pie in a cast iron pan is one of our families favorite dinners...(and leftovers!). We typically make two huge pot pies that our four teenage boys inhale like there is no tomorrow. John and I both cook dinners in our home, often side-by-side as we hash over the day's news and chit chat with our boys, if they're around. We also wing most of our dinners sans recipes. Pot pie, while easy and something we've been making since our boys were babies, isn't something many people I know make on a regular basis. I think people view it as complicated, and I get it. I remember when I wanted to start making it part of our dinner repertoire and questioning my sanity. Roast the chicken then debone it. Make the stock or have a bunch of it in the freezer. (not happening) Make the dough...from scratch. We had four kids under the age of six and we both worked full time outside of our home and dinners around our table were something we made a priority. Good and mostly healthy dinners. I needed a pot pie in our mix! But I also needed my sanity. I learned shortcuts early on-much thanks to my mom who is an absolutely fantastic cook. Things that I had done pre-kids needed some reality checks. She was good to lovingly point them out. I stopped making homemade stock and bought the boxed version. I quit making my own dough and bought the pre-made kind you unroll. I also buy my chicken de-boned. What an awesome time-saver that is.
Our goal in sharing the things we do is to inspire you in any way we can. So if our time-savers aren't for you, then by all means, make the dough. Roast the chicken. Make homemade stock. Amen. 
Cheers and love from the countryside xxx
(Click HERE to download a PDF of the recipe)