February 14, 2016

Valentines Day ~ Recipes to Warm the Heart

Happy Valentine's Day! I hope you are spending it with those who mean the most to you!

Due to the bitter cold we are experiencing here in New Jersey, we are going to stay close to home today. I plan to make a couple of old favorites that scream comfort food to us.

In just a little while, I'm heading into the kitchen to bake up some Cream Cheese Cookies that are consistently one of our favorites!

Cream Cheese Chocolate Chip Cookies

These cookies are always soft and cakey, which is the way we prefer them... if they last more than a day, you can keep them in an airtight container for up to a week.

Dinner will be cooking low and slow with my absolute favorite Red Wine Braised Short Ribs!


Serving these short ribs over creamy mashed potatoes is the perfect comfort food on a cold winter day - especially one that has negative degree wind chills in the air! You still have time to go and get some nice meaty short ribs from the grocery store to make these for your favorite people today.  They braise in the oven for around 2 - 2 1/2 hours... and the scent coming from your oven will be heavenly!

Wishing each of you who come to visit my little space on the internet a day filled with love and happiness! I'd love to hear what delicious treats you enjoy on this special day!

Please note that all photos and content belong to Patsy Kreitman, unless otherwise noted. If you want to use something please ask first.

January 24, 2016

Super Simple Snow Day Pancakes

I imagine that if you weren't on the East Coast this weekend, you enjoyed a relatively uneventful weather weekend. Those of us in the path of Winter Storm Jonas had the pleasure of staying home on Saturday while snow swirled around us for the majority of the day. The end result? About 30 or so inches in my town.

We are forever thankful that we did not lose power and that we have snow blower that allowed my husband to get out during the snow storm and attempt to keep up with the piles of snow every few hours. There are many others who were not so lucky that lived closer to the coastal areas and further south of us. My heart goes out to them, especially those who are still trying to recover from Hurricane Sandy!

When we are fortunate enough to have a winter storm happen on a weekend, it means a relaxed day at home where we can stay cozy, watch movies and I spend some time cooking. It truly makes me happy when I can have day to make a few things in the kitchen and wander in and out to watch movies with the family.

I don't typically make breakfast on the weekends, even though it would seem the perfect time to get in there and make something special. We often have too many errands or other places to be early in the day to accommodate doing this on a regular basis. So, Saturday morning I made a super easy homemade pancake recipe that I've tweaked from one I found on All Recipes when I ran out of Bisquick one morning.

Snow day pancakes #breakfast #snowday #pancakes

January 3, 2016

Glazed Chocolate Bundt Cake to bring in 2016

Welcome to 2016! Are you ready for the new year and all the possibilities that it has to offer?

I always feel like the new year sneaks up on me and the previous year flew by at lightening speed. I am ready for what 2016 has in store and am working on goals rather than resolutions. It just seems to me that resolutions are something that are so easy to give up on after a short time, whereas a goal is something that you plan out and find a way to make it happen. So, no resolutions here... just well thought out goals that I am going to plan out the steps to reach them. What do you plan to accomplish in this new year?

We had the pleasure of bringing in the new year with our friends and neighbors. It's always a fun evening and filled with more food than anyone can possibly eat, but we enjoy nibbling until it's time to watch the ball drop on tv together.

Of course, being someone who loves to cook I asked what I could bring to share and she asked me to bring dessert. So, I began searching for something decadent and chocolatey to add to the celebration.

Chocolate glazed bundt cake | www.famfriendsfood

November 8, 2015

Arroz Con Pollo (Chicken & Rice) ~ New Family Favorite!

Every once in awhile, I come across a recipe that I decide to take a chance and try. This time it's a recipe from Skinnytaste. I was looking for something I could make on a weeknight and that would be a little different from anything else I typically make for dinner.

After going to through a number of appealing recipes, I settled on Arroz Con Pollo. Nothing like a kicked up version of chicken and rice to make dinner more interesting, right?

Arroz con pollo

When we were in Puerto Rico last summer, we enjoyed some of the local cuisine. I decided that I do love mofongo and hope to find a recipe to try to make that one at home soon. My Youngest tried the Arroz con Pollo and really enjoyed it, especially the flavor of the rice. So, I knew that at least a couple of us would like this dish since I was drawn to the flavors already.

What I didn't expect was for everyone to dig in and go back for seconds and even third helpings! The flavor from the Adobo seasoning and the Sazon Tropical, were what I think brought this dish to that level of being hard to stop nibbling.

This was truly a one pot meal since everything cooks together in the same pan. Just keep an eye on it as the rice on the bottom could get dried out faster than the rest of it so, you might need to add a little bit more water if it's getting too dry.

I'm going to send you over to Skinnytaste for the recipe... be sure to check it out!

Here are some other Spanish recipes that I hope to try soon:

One Pot Spanish Chicken and Potatoes from Pinch of Yum
Sweet Fried Plantains from The Kitchn
Bocadillo El Camino from Food52
Tortilla Española from Trissalicious

Just thinking about these recipes has me wanting to head into the kitchen and start experimenting with these classic dishes!

Please note that all photos and content belong to Patsy Kreitman, unless otherwise noted. If you want to use something please ask first.

November 3, 2015

Braised Brussels Sprouts from My Paris Market Cookbook

It's November already? Seriously... someone needs to slow down time for me! While we thoroughly enjoyed October and celebrating all the spookiness the goes along with Halloween, now it's time to think about Thanksgiving... and, I'm still not quite ready.

Sometimes you have to move forward because time keeps moving forward, which also means I had every intention of sharing today's recipe and cookbook review with you a couple of weeks ago... and, well... life happens sometimes. Thank goodness for cookbooks to provide inspiration because the last month or so has not been filled with trying new recipes or even a lot of homemade cooking. We are all missing it, and it's time to get back to it.

So I am so happy to finally be sharing My Paris Cookbook by Emily Dilling with you! For those of us who not only enjoy recipes, but a bit of storytelling as well this cookbook is a delightful read! Each section has tidbits about different markets in Paris at different times of year. As I continue to read through it, I find myself daydreaming about a future trip to see and enjoy everything described for myself.

The book is nicely divided by season, which we all know is the ideal way to enjoy fresh produce at it's peak. The recipes vary in difficulty, but all ingredients are easy to find if you have access to a decent grocery store and farm markets.

I can't wait to try so many more recipes from this cookbook! Ranging from Five Herb Baked Tomatoes in the summer to Slow Cooked Chicken in Wine and Mushroom Sauce on a cold winter day to Chocolate Mousse in spring (did you know that spring is the season of chocolate in Paris?). Each season brings some mouth-watering recipes to the table.

Braised Brussels sprouts

This time of year, I am on the hunt for different vegetable side dish recipes, so I decided to try two different recipes. The one I'm sharing today is an incredible way to prepare Brussels sprouts, and one that will be making a repeat appearance on my dinner table - Kristen's Braised Brussels Sprouts.

I've leaned toward roasting them in the past since we enjoy the crispness that roasting adds to the outer leaves. It's a simple recipe and always turns out perfectly. But, now that I've tried braising them, both preparations will be in heavy rotation!

The flavor from the wine gently infuses the sprouts as they cook, and we found it hard to stop going back for more. The term braise often makes you think that it's a long cooking process, but in this case they are done in under 20 minutes. Not a lot of hands on time, so you can work on the other components of your meal.

Recipe shared with permission from the publisher. 

Kristen's Braised Brussels Sprouts

Recipe by Emily Dilling, My Paris Cookbook

Yield: 4 servings

  • 4 tablespoons salted butter
  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts, halved
  • dash salt and pepper
  • 2 medium shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup dry white wine
Cooking Directions
  1. Melt butter in a large pan. Add halved Brussels sprouts face down.

  2. Cook in butter on medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Add salt, pepper, shallots and dry white wine. Cover and cook for 4 minutes.

  3. Stir lightly. Cover and cook on low heat for another 5-7 minutes.

  4. Serve immediately.

Note: I was provided with a review copy of this cookbook, and all opinions are my own.

Please note that all photos and content belong to Patsy Kreitman, unless otherwise noted. If you want to use something please ask first.

October 25, 2015

Spice Rubbed Braised Beef #SundaySupper

When the weather gets cooler and the leaves have begun to change... it's time for those dishes that warm you from the inside out. This week's Sunday Supper theme is Warming Trends... and we are all sharing those dishes that warm us up when it's getting colder outside.

I fell in love with braising the last couple of years... and as a result, the use of my French oven goes into heavy rotation once we get into fall. Nothing like putting a dish together and allowing it to simmer and do it's magic all afternoon on the weekend. The house smells amazing and the meat becomes so tender that you would never consider putting a knife on the table when you are ready to eat.

Spice rubbed braised beef

We recently re-started our Dinner Club group - just 2 other couples and us - because we wanted to get back to trying new recipes. This first get together was to bring together comfort foods, because I was craving braised beef. The recipe I decided to try was from My Recipes and had a blend of spices that I knew would make the dish sing.

This is one of those dishes that you keep going back for a little bit more and a little bit more because the flavors keep calling to you. It is ideal when served with mashed potatoes and some crusty bread (yes a carb-fest!) to soak up that sauce. My mouth is watering just thinking about this dish again!

You know you will want to give this dish a try during those cold days in the Winter when the idea of going outside is simply not appealing.

Spice Rubbed Braised Beef

Recipe Adapted from: MyRecipes.com

  • 1 tablespoon half sharp paprika
  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 3 pounds boneless chuck rust, trimmed of excess fat
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 28 ounces crushed tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 6 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Cooking Directions
  1. Combine paprika, brown sugar, garlic powder, salt, mustard and ground red pepper; then rub all over the roast. Place in a large ziploc bag for at least 1 hour, but overnight is ideal to ensure the beef is infused with the spices.

  2. Heat a large Dutch (or French) oven over medium heat; add olive oil and when hot, add onion, crushed red pepper and minced garlic; cook for 2-3 minutes while stirring. To the onion mixture add: crushed tomatoes, water, 6 tablespoons brown sugar, red wine vinegar and tomato paste. Bring to a boil; then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add salt and black pepper an stir.

  3. While sauce is simmering, preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

  4. Add the roast to the pan, cover and bake for 2 and a half hours.

Now, head on over and check out the rest of the Warming Trends recipes from the rest of the #SundaySupper bloggers!



Main Dishes and Soups

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It's easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

Please note that all photos and content belong to Patsy Kreitman, unless otherwise noted. If you want to use something please ask first.

October 12, 2015

Apple Barley Salad

Note: I received a review copy of the cookbook I share in this post. All opinions are my own. 

Looking for a salad that you can make on the weekend and have ready for healthy, quick and easy lunches? Then you are going to love this recipe!
Apple barley salad

When I was asked if I'd like to check out The Age GRACEfully Cookbook, I was intrigued. I have done a lot of reading into different ways of eating healthfully the last couple of years and am always looking for new ways of making recipes healthier and part of a cleaner eating style.

September 26, 2015

Soft Sugar Cookies with Cookie Dough Frosting

The last couple of weeks have been filled with the Jewish High Holy Days, so needless to say we have been a little bit busy going to temple and enjoying family dinners. For Rosh Hashanah we typically head to my in-laws for dinner, which features some of our favorites: Chicken in Phyllo Dough and Carrot Soufflé.

Since we drive about an hour to see them, I usually bring a dessert that travels well. I brought two this time! I hadn't made Cinnamon Apple Cake in many years, so it was nice to revisit an old favorite that always turns out perfectly.  I also wanted to bring something that would appeal to the kid in all of us, so I went to one of my favorite cookbooks: The Cookie Dough Lover's Cookbook. Every recipe I've made from this book has been to-die-for!

When I saw the recipe for Soft Sugar Cookies with Cookie Dough Frosting, I just knew we'd have another favorite... my only hesitation was the instruction to roll out the dough. I rebelled... I opted to hand shape the cookies, and they turned out beautifully for me. You see... rolling out dough for cookies, pie crusts or really anything is not something that works well for me... it tends to become kind of ugly in my kitchen when I'm attempting it.

Soft sugar cookies with chocolate chip cookie dough frosting

These cookies will remind you of the supermarket cookies that you get that have the frosting on them... only better because you know all the ingredients that go into them and you can change up the frosting according to what you like... but, I would highly recommend going with the chocolate chip cookie dough frosting from this recipe!

I reached out to the lovely, Lindsay Landis who wrote the cookbook and currently writes the blog, Love and Olive Oil and she gave me permission to share the recipe here so that you can also make these incredible cookies!

Soft Sugar Cookies with Cookie Dough Frosting

Recipe by Lindsay Landis, The Cookie Dough Lover's Cookbook

For the cookies:
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour (or more as needed)
For the frosting: 
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 cups powdered sugar, or more as needed
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
Cooking Directions
  1. Using a stand mixer, beat together shortening and sugar at medium speed until light and fluffy. Add each egg individually, allowing to incorporate before adding the next.

  2. Add in the heavy cream and vanilla and continue to mix until smooth. Add the salt, baking powder and baking soda to the mixture; then add the flour, one cup at a time. Once the dough is mixed, it will be soft, but not sticky. If it is sticky add a little more flour (1 tablespoon at a time) until it is no longer sticky. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  4. Shape dough into round discs about 1/4 inch thick using about 2 tablespoons of dough for each cookie - my cookies were about 2 inches wide. Place on parchment lined baking sheets. Allow to bake for 8-10 minutes, watch to ensure that they do not overbake!

  5. Prepare frosting by combining butter and brown sugar in a mixing bowl and mix until light and fluffy. Add in flour and salt, then vanilla. Once those ingredients are incorporated, add 4 cups of powdered sugar to the mixture - one cup at a time. Once mixed in, add the heavy cream and beat until fluffy. If needed add additional powdered sugar to reach a thick, yet spreadable consistency.

  6. Using an offset spatula, frost each cookie with a heaping tablespoon of frosting. Sprinkle with chocolate chips, lightly pressing to ensure that they "stick" to the frosting.

  7. The cookies will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator of up to 3 days, if they last that long!

Please note that all photos and content belong to Patsy Kreitman, unless otherwise noted. If you want to use something please ask first.

September 13, 2015

#SundaySupper Grandma's Greek Salad

Happy Grandparents Day! This goes out to my mom and my in-laws because they are all pretty amazing grandparents to my boys.

I'm really happy to be joining in with Sunday Supper as part of my effort to get back into blogging again. Such a fantastic group of bloggers coming together and sharing meals that they are serving their families. This week is all about recipes that came from our grandparents, and the recipe I'm sharing is from my grandma.

My grandma was an incredible cook and when she knew you liked something in particular, she made sure to make it during every holiday and family gathering. I am the proud owner of a notebook she gave me with some of her favorite recipes when I got married. It's something that means so much to me since I can't just call her up and ask her how to make something anymore.

Growing up, I spent a lot of time with my grandparents on my mom's side. I would spend weekends and go shopping and just play in their living room while they watched tv or read the newspaper. It was like a mini vacation since it was just me visiting them.

My grandma was quite a prankster and I fell for her tricks every single time. I was annoyed at the time, but looking back I laugh about it and have some pretty funny stories to share with my boys now.   I miss her terribly as she has been gone almost 14 years now, so she didn't get to meet either of my boys. So, I try to make recipes from her notebook and share a bit about her every once in awhile so that know her through my memories.

She was an amazing cook and even had one of her pie recipes published in the paper out in Kansas City, which was later compiled into a cookbook. She had quite a knack with pie dough and she tried to teach me how to do it, but I am still pie challenged. I try every once in awhile thinking that at some point, I'll finally understand how the dough is supposed to feel.

The recipe I'm sharing today is one she marked in the notebook as one of my favorites, and it truly is. I haven't made it in quite some time so this week's theme inspired me to get the recipe out and let my boys try it. I really have no idea why this was called Greek Salad because it doesn't have a distinctive Greek flavor to me... but, that's the name it has on the recipe, so I'm going with it.

Grandma's Greek Salad | www.famfriendsfood.com

It couldn't be easier to make... gather your ingredients and prep what needs to be chopped. Add it all to a bowl and stir to combine. Put in in the fridge and chill. Seriously, that's all there is to it. It's got a great crunch because of the cauliflower and the green bell peppers and pimientos add a nice amount of color.

Greek Salad

Recipe by Louise (AKA: My Grandma)
Prep time: 10 minutes

  • 2 cans cooked shrimp, salad size
  • 1 small head of cauliflower
  • green bell pepper, chopped
  • onion, chopped
  • 1 jar pimientos
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 2-3 drops hot pepper sauce
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
Cooking Directions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl.

  2. Serve cold.
It really doesn't get easier than this!

Sweets that are the Sweetest
Savory Meals with Special Memories
5 Tips for Preserving Family Recipes and a Grandparents Day Tribute by Sunday Supper

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board.

Please note that all photos and content belong to Patsy Kreitman, unless otherwise noted. If you want to use something please ask first.

September 6, 2015

Apple Picking & Meeting a Long Time Blogging Friend

We have been enjoying incredible weather the last couple of days here in New Jersey! Lovely temperatures and gorgeous, sunshine-y days. This is my favorite time of year and I want to savor each and every moment before we head into fall.

Don't get me wrong, I do enjoy fall and the changing of the leaves to incredible jewel toned colors and the re-introduction of pumpkin flavored treats and there is also apple picking. Apple picking season starts late August here at the local farms and we took advantage of it this weekend and brought home some gorgeous apples!

Apple Picking at Battleview Orchards | www.famfriendsfood.com

We were already in South Jersey spending time with family and decided rather than fight the crowds at the shore, that we'd head the other direction and pick apples at Battleview Orchards.  They have a nice variety of apples available for picking now.  Peach season is nearing it's end but you might be able to still pick some if you get there soon.

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