Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut squash soup is my go-to soup in Fall.  

I love it!  It’s rich, yet light, creamy yet without any cream and warm and delicious! The perfect solution to gloomy Fall days!

It is incredibly easy to make, very good for you and cheap to make! The hardest part is cutting up the squash, but at least you get a great arm workout as well as delicious soup!

Butternut Squash Soup

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30-Minute Recipes – Coleslaw

30-Minute Recipes - Coleslaw

On our recent trip to England, this was one of the many recipes I BEGGED my Mum to make!

I love her Coleslaw!

It is probably the best I have ever eaten!  I’m not sure what makes it so good as there are no secret ingredients or hidden techniques – but it is just delicious!

30-Minute Recipes - Coleslaw

This is one of the simplest recipes I have ever posted……the only slight time consuming thing is chopping the vegetables, but if you have a food processor you will be laughing!

There is a basic recipe which you can then add to with whatever ingredients take your fancy.

Captain America hates raisins – so he got a special bowl without them.  Mum, Dad and I all love raisins so they are a must for our Coleslaw.  This time Mum added pineapple for a little sweet twist.  We also prefer a fruity Coleslaw but for many people I know this isn’t a preference.  We also add nuts and seeds to ours for crunch! Continue reading

Labor Day Celebrations

Labor Day Celebrations

Labor Day…….a day off, a time for BBQ’s, making the most of the last of the summer weather, spending hours in freeway traffic with everyone else who is trying to ‘get away’ for the long weekend, a last chance to wear white pants…..or something more??

According to Wikipedia, Labor Day is defined as:

Labor Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the first Monday in September, that celebrates the economic and social contributions of workers. It was first nationally recognized in 1894 to placate unionists following the Pullman Strike. With the decline in union membership, the holiday is generally viewed as a time for barbeques and the end of summer vacations.

 

For those of you reading this who are not Americans, or at least living in America, Monday September 2nd will pass unnoticed….so while you go about your daily lives remember us here as we ‘party’ away the day!

 

With that in mind let’s all celebrate, by BBQ-ing, wearing white pants (including you men!) and making the most of the summer weather…….while remembering and celebrating “the economic and social contributions of workers”!

 

I gathered together a selection of the ‘Best Of The Best’ of summer BBQ-ing and party recipes to inspire your celebrations this Monday!

 

Whatever you do to celebrate, have fun and stay safe!

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30-Minute Recipes: Summer Pasta Salad

Summer Pasta Salad

We are now back in California and back to normal again following our wonderful vacation in England visiting my family and friends.

I know we haven’t posted any recipes for a while – but WE ARE BACK and today we have a delicious summer salad treat for you!

I recently made this Summer Pasta Salad for our pot-luck lunch at our church.

I was serving up to 12 people so the ingredients listed serve that amount. It was very easy to prepare, light and fresh and perfect for summer – in less than 30 minutes – even catering for 12 people!!

Essentially you could use many different ingredients in this salad – we added chicken as we were serving it as a main dish, but you could easily make a vegetarian version, or serve it as a side dish.

I also lasted very well in an airtight container in the refrigerator, and tasted just as good a few days later!

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Celebrate 4th July

4th July Party

We have a few more days left to finalize you plans for Celebrating 4th July.  If you haven’t already made plans – don’t worry there is still time!  If you have plans, but are panicking about what to cook/take to a party DO NOT WORRY! I compiled a list of the favorite summer recipes from our blog – with something for everyone!

We are still finalizing our plans for 4th July but we are starting the day with a 4th July Parade in downtown Clayton with the family, followed by an afternoon of cooking and eating delicious food with some great friends.  I will be sporting some red, white and blue…..and I promise not to bring my British Flag!

Here is my guide to the best recipes to make this 4th July extra special.

Most of the recipes are very simple, so even if you are a beginner, there is something here that you will be able to pull together really easily.

The following list coincides with the pictures above (from top left to bottom right):

1. Banana Cupcake & Strawberry Frosting

2. Foil Roasted Potatoes

3. Strawberry Balsamic Salad Dressing

4. Turkey Burgers

5. Fruit Pie #2

6. Herb Lemon Marinade

7. Grilled Corn

8. Fruit Pie #1

9. Italian Balsamic Salad Dressing

10. 5-Minute Peach Sorbet

12. Flank Steak Marinade

13. Three Bean Salad

14. Captain America’s Iced Tea

15. Captain America’s BBQ Marinade

16. Ranch Dressing MIx

Enjoy!

Celebrate 4th July – Foil Roasted Potatoes

Foil Roasted Potatoes

Okay, Okay! I know there is a HUGE irony with the British lady doing a series of recipes about Celebrating 4th July.  However, in my defense, I am married to an American, I do live in America and the 4th July is a great holiday which I am willing to embrace in (nearly!) all it’s glory!

I have done all sorts of things to celebrate over the past 6 years, including volunteering at our church fireworks booth (where the tagline “Let’s face it, you wouldn’t even have this holiday if it wasn’t for us Brits!” usually went down like a storm and raised us quite a chunk of money…..luckily all our customers had a sense of humor!)

One of my favorite things to do to celebrate is watch a small town parade in all it’s red, white and blue glory, and then go somewhere with lots of friends, soak up the wonderful California summer sunshine and grill some meat! If that doesn’t sound American I don’t know what does!

Yesterday, we featured Grilled Corn, a local favorite! Today we are featuring my personal favorite, Foil Roasted Potatoes, because what British woman, with Irish roots, doesn’t love potatoes!

I love potatoes and I can’t get enough of them!  I love them roasted, boiled, mashed, smashed, baked and grilled, large or small, red, white or…….brown! I am a carbs girl who would eat potatoes for breakfast, lunch and dinner! I am literally salivating at the thought of boiled new potatoes with lashings of butter which I will be eating by the pound when I am in England in a few short weeks!

Here is our simple recipe for the best Foil Roasted Potatoes EVER!

Enjoy!

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Celebrate 4th July – Grilled Corn

Grilled corn

Okay, Okay! I know there is a HUGE irony with the British lady doing a series of recipes about Celebrating 4th July.  However, in my defense, I am married to an American, I do live in America and the 4th July is a great holiday which I am willing to embrace in (nearly!) all it’s glory!

I have done all sorts of things to celebrate over the past 6 years, including volunteering at our church fireworks booth (where the tagline “Let’s face it, you wouldn’t even have this holiday if it wasn’t for us Brits!” usually went down like a storm and raised us quite a chunk of money…..luckily all our customers had a sense of humor!)

One of my favorite things to do to celebrate is watch a small town parade in all it’s red, white and blue glory, and then go somewhere with lots of friends, soak up the wonderful California summer sunshine and grill some meat! If that doesn’t sound American I don’t know what does!

So to kick this Celebrate 4th July series off we are starting with a California staple……Grilled Corn.  It grows like weeds around our local area so the corn we can get right now is REALLY fresh white corn, grown less than 25 miles away……..and it’s delicious!

Here is our very simple recipe for Grilled Corn

Enjoy!

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Three Bean Salad

Three Bean Salad

This Three Bean Salad is one of the most delicious salads I have ever eaten…there I said it! I had this at the church pot-luck lunch a few weeks ago and I ate WAY too much of it.

I immediately asked for the recipe to share it with you all here!  My apologies as I cannot give credit to the original recipe creator as I have no idea where it came from….but whoever you are, you are a genius!

Three Bean Salad

Willie, the lady from church who made this Three Bean Salad allowed me to share the recipe here and she actually made the version you see here….I just took the photographs!  She said it was very labor intensive but she doesn’t have my secret weapon, Crate & Barrel Herb Scissors, which would make the process much faster.  Also, if you have a Vitamix or food processor then you could use that to chop the celery and onion.

Three Bean Salad

This made the perfect accompaniment to Captain America’s BBQ Marinated Chicken and my Herb Lemon Chicken – you should try it next time you grill or want a fresh summer salad!

Enjoy!

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Hummus

hummus

Hummus is one of my favorite snack foods, although I rarely buy it as I feel like I am being ripped off at the grocery store being charged such a huge amount for something I can make myself for much cheaper. Yes, I know most houses don’t have tahini in their pantry but it really is worth buying that one ingredient and then having the privilege of being able to make your own hummus whenever you want.

This particular recipe took a little bit of perfecting (aka me running backwards and forwards with a spoon full of hummus to Captain America who was writing his sermon for Sunday morning, saying “taste this! What’s missing?”) hence the HUGE batch we ended up making….but we are serving it to 30 extended family members, so it’s fine! Obviously if you don’t want to make such a huge batch of it, just reduce all of the ingredients accordingly, or just make the huge batch and eat it all…..because I promise you with one taste you will want to eat more and more!!

Ingredients:

3 15oz cans of garbanzo beans (chick peas)

4 cloves of garlic

1/2 C lemon juice

1/4 C tahini

1 tsp cumin

2 tbsp fresh cilantro (I use the Gourmet Garden brand found in the chilled section in most grocery stores)

cilantro

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp paprika

2 tbsp olive oil

2/3 C cold water

1 tsp salt

Directions:

Add all the ingredients, except the water, into a blender or Vitamix or food processor (basically anything that will smoosh the ingredients together!), then slowly blend all the ingredients adding the water a little at a time.

If you like a chunkier hummus blend the ingredients a little less, and if you like hummus smooth, then blend it until it’s dead!

hummus chickpeas

hummus dips

Christ in the Passover Dinner

Christ In The Passover Dinner

During a Christ In The Passover Seder meal, it is common to share in a full meal as well as celebrating the festival of passover using the traditional elements.

There are some very traditional foods that are served during this meal, and Captain America and I cook for our Christ In The Passover Dinner each year, sticking to the traditions.

Here is a guide to the foods we ate, including all the recipes, so you too can host your very own Christ In The Passover Dinner.

We both LOVE roast lamb, and this recipe resulted in some of the best I have tasted, even if it did take all day to cook! Tzimmes are one of Captain America’s favorite vegetable dishes-he wants to eat them throughout the year! They are very simple to make, after you have finished all the peeling, of course!

We added some additional seasonal foods to make the meal more well-rounded, a Simple Green Salad and sautéed asparagus! Delicious!

If you are hosting your very own Christ In The Passover follow the links below for all the recipes:

Matzah Ball Soup

Christ In The Passover Desserts

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