Saving Thanksgiving: Chili and Brandy Alexander Pie! UPDATE

As everyone should know by now, I have "issues" with Thanksgiving that are in great measure about my family's utter inflexibility on the menu:The year I declared “NO PASTA” and served them a spinach/eggdrop soup, they sat around the table like it was a funeral. They kept asking me if this was how Germans eat Thanksgiving, and wondering why the soup couldn’t have little macaronis and meatballs in it.When I asked my mother-in-law if, these year, she was still including pasta in the gut-b … [Read more...]

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Father’s Day: Butter Cookies with 8 Hard Boiled Eggs

Growing up, I knew a lady who seemed ancient when I was little, and who finally died about two years ago, a few weeks shy of her 100th birthday. She was from Germany, and a stern lady with ram-rod straight posture, who never smiled or laughed in all the years I knew her, and yet she was never unkind or ungenerous. Some people just aren't into levity, I think.Anyway, anytime I crossed her line of vision she would feed me, rather like an Italian mom. She made heavenly ham/butter/mayo … [Read more...]

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Deacon Greg calls it “the best” Irish Soda Bread Recipe

Actually, he calls it the The Best. Soda Bread. Ever.The recipe also received a thumbs up from this blogger I don't even know, so that's nice.Irish Soda Bread is really nothing more than a delicious butter-delivery-system. Since I've just taken a batch from the oven, I figure it's time to share my mother-in-law's recipe, once again:4 c sifted flour 1 1/2 tsps baking soda 1 tsp salt 3/4 c sugar 1 c raisins (or cranberries for a nice change. Or both!) 2 tblspns melted butter 2 … [Read more...]

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Cream Puffs and Bourbon-berries: Our Traditional Recipe Swap

One of my favorite parts of Thanksgiving is becoming the annual recipe swap between Ace O' Spades HQ's Gabriel Malor and me, and our readers, too!In the past we've covered quick noshes, like Spiced Nuts, veggie side-dishes like Squash Stuffing, Roasted Parsnips and Apples, Turnips and Carrots (my personal favorite!), and desserts like Pumpkin Cheesecake Dip and Italian Rainbow Cookies.This year, Gabriel is offering Bourbon-berries "in lieu of the traditional can-shaped cranberry sauce" … [Read more...]

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St. Joseph’s Day Pastry!

Today is the feast of Saint Joseph, and there are lots of good pieces around, discussing the great husband of Mary and step-father of Jesus. There are a lot of Joseph's in New York. In our family we have Joe, Joseph, Joey, and so forth, and they're all gleefully awaiting supper, so they can enjoy Sfingi (pronounced sfINgy) for dessert!Basically, a Sfingi Di San Giuseppe is like a cannoli, but instead of a tubal cookie, the ricotta creme (or custard if you prefer) is served in a pâte à choux, … [Read more...]

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Mexican Meat Loaf

A while back, I mentioned on twitter that I was making a "Mexican Meat Loaf" recipe of my own design.Requests for the recipe came fast and furious and some are still asking for it, three months later.The problem is, since it's just something I throw together, I really don't have measurements for you. But it's kind of wet and rainy over here, and a little cool -- good weather for meatloaf, so here goes:You'll notice the hard-boiled egg in the illustration above. My husband's mother always … [Read more...]

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Shotglass Shortbread Cookies

Some nuns did a kindness for me, and I wanted to thank them with a little gift. A shortbread cookie recipe I'd recently gotten from my dear Mother-in-Law seemed to perfectly meet the case. She cuts them in a star shape, and they are thin, light and melt-in-your-mouth good.After searching the kitchen for an hour looking for an old cookie cutter, my husband reminded me that I'd done one of my periodic sweeps, where anything I determine to have been unused for too long gets tossed or donated … [Read more...]

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Quiche St. Pierre

"Perhaps it would be a good thing if every Christian, certainly if every priest, could dream once in his life that he were pope, and wake from that nightmare in a sweat of agony." -- Fr. Ronald Knox Today being the Feast of the Chair of St. Peter, (which, as one wag notes doesn't look too comfy) I have decided that for supper we will have a salad and some homemade Quiche St. Pierre.Honoring the Chair of St. Peter with Quiche St. Pierre is something I just made up this afternoon. Because I … [Read more...]

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My FIL now hates Ree Drummond

My Mother-in-Law and my Father-in-Law are living saints. They are people who never have a bad word to say about anyone; they're the first ones to go running to help someone in need, and usually, they'll bring food when they do it. They're Italian that way.They don't hate anyone. Dad, especially, is incapable of hating anyone. He receives everyone with gentle (and gentlemanly) good grace and acceptance. He never raises his voice. He smiles sweetly and allows a person to be who he or she … [Read more...]

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I hate Ree Drummond

This woman is killing me.I hate her hate her hate her.I want that cake.I am famous around here for not much liking cake.I want that cake. I love milk. I love sweet milk. I love cream. I love all milk by-products. My middle name should be Leche. I could be Lizzie Leche.I hate Ree Drummond. She eats this stuff and remains thin.But, oh, My family loves Ree Drummond.This horrible woman has a cookbook coming out in October, and I have already ordered mine and plan to give some as … [Read more...]

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