Tag Archives: banana

Snowed in, liquored up

8 Feb

If you don’t live on the East coast, you might not know, but we were hit with 22 inches of snow on Saturday. To make things even more interesting, we are hearing predictions of another foot to a foot and a half this coming Wednesday. Ah winter, you make me miss Florida.

In any case, when you’re cooped up in the house all day, after all the cleaning, cooking, napping, TV watching and Wii playing, you need a drink. Thankfully we were stocked! It’s easy to make a dry martini, but it makes it more fun to come up with cocktails that add a little excitement to the snowy day. I’ll admit that our happy hour started a little before 5, but it was 5:00 somewhere, right?

I started the night with lemon basil martinis. They are refreshing and light. It’s a great one to stimulate the appetite too.

Lemon Basil Martini

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon basil, roughly chopped
2 oz lemon vodka
2 oz water

shake all the ingredients with ice

The the next martini I made is pictured above and I called it a breakfast martini…sounds weird, but I promise you it is fantastic!

Breakfast Martini

2 oz vanilla vodka
2 oz banana rum
1 tablespoon real maple syrup
pinch of cinnamon

shake all ingredients with ice

Give these a try on the next snow day, they are sure to cure cabin fever

Always thinking of the next meal


Early Thanksgiving

23 Nov

So my mother-in-law celebrates Thanksgiving the Sunday before the holiday every year. It’s great because it makes the holiday family flip-flop that comes with marriage, a little easier. This year I was asked to bring desserts. As a rule, we celebrate my father-in-law’s birthday the same day that we celebrate Thanksgiving. This makes the dessert a little more difficult. Not that birthday cake is difficult, but a chocolate cake just doesn’t quite fit in with the usual requirement of pie.

So the menu had to fulfill the need and want of a variety of pies, and fulfill the want of a celebratory dessert that isn’t a pumpkin pie with a candle in it. So here’s what I decided to make. First, the traditional pie, caramel pumpkin pie. Second, the celebration, banana cream pie. Yes, I know that this is not a traditional Thanksgiving dessert, however, it is my father-in-law’s favorite. I also make an Italian apple cake, and sugar cookies for the kiddies. I felt like it was a bit of a hodgepodge combination, but it worked.

Thank goodness for the cookies too, because they were by far the most popular. Here’s the recipe:


1 1/2 cups butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
1 cup 10x sugar
4 eggs
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

1  In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour (or overnight).

2  Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Roll out dough on floured surface 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Cut into shapes with any cookie cutter. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake 6 to 8 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.

And what to do with all those leftovers? Well, I don’t know about you, but I’m completely over turkey chili. So I came up with this little beauty. It’s a leftover turkey pizza! I’m so excited about it, because it is seriously tasty. When you are doing your shopping, pick up a sack of pizza dough, or some Boboli bread. The day after, when you’ve returned from your black Friday escapades, simply put this pizza together for another simple family feast.

Thanksgiving Leftover Pizza

Pre-heat the oven with a pizza stone or cookie tray in it, to 400 degrees. When the tray comes up to temperature, take out of the oven and spread the dough or lay out the baked crust. Spread with leftover cranberry sauce. Layer with turkey and anything else that you might have remaining. (I would skip the desserts though.) Top with leftover cheese, or treat yourself and top with shredded gruyere. Bake for 15-20 minutes and then garnish with minced parsley, thyme, and sage. If you don’t have these herbs, use what you have, it is leftovers after all. You just don’t want to go back out to the grocery store. Ahem, LEFTOVER PIZZA, thank you.

Whatever your holiday holds, enjoy. It’s that once a year celebration that is all about eating, which is after all, the most important thing.

Always thinking of the next meal