Pepper Shrimp with Pad Thai Salad

Shrimp is one of my favorite seafood proteins. It has a sweet, unique flavor, a gorgeous color when cooked, and is the most versatile seafood ingredient available.

For this recipe, I kept the flavors on the shrimp simple with a touch of salt, and garlic powder, plus a bit more black pepper to pull in the spicy flavors from the pad thai dressing. So what you taste is a perfect ratio of sweet, spicy, crunchy and salty.

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Tuscan Grilled Halibut with Arugula on Toasted Ciabatta

Sandwiches are insanely versatile and are a great option for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  For me, a sandwich is first and foremost about the bread, especially ciabatta.  It has a wonderfully soft chewy center and crunchy outer crust that can hold up to anything you serve it with.  The next qualifier would be the ingredients to put in between the bread, and they have to have lots of flavor and texture.  Let’s be honest and admit deli lunchmeat just doesn’t do it.

This hearty sandwich is an ideal choice for your next winery picnic.  Pour yourself a glass of wine, and enjoy the delicious flavors of the fresh, delicate, grilled fish, the deep richness of the sun-dried tomatoes, the briny capers, and the bright hits from the fresh basil, parsley, and arugula.

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Tofu and Veggie Stir Fry in Spicy Peanut Sauce over Glass Noodles

I love this recipe – in fact, I’ve made it three times since I first created it because my husband, daughter and I all decided it was our new favorite. The aromas from the spicy peanut sauce and the vibrant colors from the vegetables immediately tell your taste-buds to get ready for that first flavorful bite!

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Ginger Glazed Pork Ribs with Apples, Cabbage & Noodles

I consider myself very fortunate to have had a Hungarian grandfather and a German grandmother. Not because their genes contributed to my curvaceous European figure, but because of the wonderful recipes their families brought with them to this country.

And even though the sticky, sweet, falling apart tender pork ribs were a big success the night I made this meal, it was the apples, cabbage, and noodles that really hit home. The very first bite took me back in time to weekend family dinners, raucous conversation, and rich, flavorful food.

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Grilled Salmon Gyro with Yogurt Flatbread

My family loves grilled salmon, so it’s a frequent item on our weekly menu. To add a little variety to our dinner one night, I decided to serve the salmon gyro-style. I knew the sweet, tender salmon would pair well with the creamy yogurt, fresh dill, and cucumber, but I have to admit, it was the first time I had ever attempted making my own flatbread.

Having now made them and experienced the freshly cooked, warm, tender, chewy flavor of a home-made flatbread, I’ll think twice before buying the store bought, preservative filled flatbread again.

It took a couple of tries with the first two dough balls, but I came up with my own process hack that made making them super easy. So, of course, I had to share my new-found hack with you!

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Grilled Portobello Caprese

It’s kind of a joke in my family how much I love fresh from the vine-ripened tomatoes, and it is common to see me pluck a ripe, juicy gem from one of the plants in our garden and pop it in my mouth before it even makes its way into the house. So this recipe is an homage to my obsession with summer ripened tomatoes and a twist on a traditional Caprese salad.

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Butterflied Cilantro-Lime Baked Shrimp with Salted Margarita Aioli

My favorite cocktail during the summer is a generous pour of silver tequila, fresh lime juice, a pinch of salt and a few ice cubes. It’s a tart drink, but it’s very refreshing. In fact, I just happened to be sipping on one of those delicious drinks while preparing this dish.

I had already planned to use the lime zest and cilantro to mix in with the panko coating but I hadn’t yet decided what to serve with the shrimp. Then I saw the bottle of tequila and the fresh limes and I had an epiphany. I was going to turn my drink into an aioli!

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Garlic Risotto with Viognier Steamed Mussels

Living near the Augusta Country Wine Trail has many advantages, the biggest one being year-round access to more than a dozen family-owned wineries. So depending on what I feel like cooking for dinner, it’s only a short drive to find the perfect wine, especially for this classic risotto dish.

Most risotto recipes call for a ‘dry white wine’ which leaves a pretty wide-open range of possibilities. Sauvignon Blanc tends to be most chefs first choice; however, for steaming muscles, I prefer an aromatic, dry, Viognier with a balanced level of acidity and one that pulls in flavors like fresh herbs, stone-fruits, and honey.

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Pork Posole Rojo

Many of my recipes go through a second or third iteration of ingredient tweaks until I feel they’re website worthy. This recipe wasn’t one of them. The first taste was a food revelation making this my new favorite stew.

Envision spicy andouille sausage, tender pork shoulder, flavorful vegetables and bold spices simmering in the slow cooker all day making your home smell warm and inviting. Dinner couldn’t come fast enough the evening I made this!

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Smoked Trout Fettuccini with Gournay Cream Sauce

Culinary smoke is one of those umami flavors difficult to explain until you’ve experienced it. I have several childhood food memories having liked various smoked meats, cheeses, and fish so when I got older and began cooking for myself, I inherently started adding those ingredients to my food.

I buy my smoked trout from one of my favorite restaurants called Annie Gunn’s. They have an amazing smokehouse deli attached to the restaurant and sell many of the ingredients they serve on their menu. For this recipe, I paired their trout with a light creamy cheese sauce, so you’ll taste just a kiss of smoke followed by the delicate flavor of the fish. Then when you swirl it onto a fork blended with chewy fettuccini, briny capers, and fresh dill, it’s a food memory you’ll never forget.

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