Cayenne Pepper Uses and Benefits Beyond the Kitchen

With the garden overflowing with hot peppers, I find myself looking for as many cayenne pepper uses as I can come up with.  Looking at the number of hot peppers I use in my kitchen nowadays, I am amazed at the fact that I had never even seen one until I was in my 20's.  I grew up in New England on baked beans and pot roast.  It was certainly tasty food but definitely not what I would call spicy.  When I decided to follow my boyfriend (now husband) down to Houston, Texas I had no idea what I was getting myself into in terms of food.  All of a … [Read more...]

Lemon and Thyme Infused Sea Salt is the Perfect Seasoning for your Next Seafood Recipe!

Having grown up in New England, right on Long Island Sound, I can honestly say there are very few varieties of seafood that I don't like.  Oysters.  Those things are nasty.  But, everything else is delicious....and even MORE delicious when flavored with fresh herbs.  Thyme is one herb that I actually grow in my own herb garden and it comes back year after year.  By combining fresh herbs, a little bit of citrus, and some course sea salt, you have the perfect infused sea salt recipe to really bring out the flavor of your fish. And by making this … [Read more...]

Homemade Cajun Spice Mix for your next Mardi Gras Recipe

I grew up in New England and the most exciting 'ethnic' food I remember having as a kid was pizza.  For those of you who are not familiar with New England cooking, to say it is bland is a bit of an understatement.  Don't get me wrong....I love New England clam chowder and homemade baked beans and my mom's pot roast.  But they aren't making my mouth scream "WOW...spicy!".  When I moved down to Texas after college, my taste buds went through a bit of culture shock!  Suddenly I was inundated with jalapenos and shrimp … [Read more...]

What You Need to Know about Midnight Snacking #24Hours

This midnight snacking post is brought to you from McDonald's but all opinions expressed are my own.I live in a very early to bed and early to rise sortof house.  In fact, we get up disgustingly early even on the weekends. I remember the days of sleeping until noon when I was fresh out of college but since then, once the sun comes up I am out of bed.  I realize that my family is a bit odd like this.  My teenagers will often ASK to go to bed...usually around 9 PM if we have cut off the mind numbing effects of teenage television.  They, too, … [Read more...]

Back to School Breakfast Suggestions and a Hamilton Beach Giveaway!

My kids headed back to school a couple of weeks ago.  In preparation for our slightly more chaotic mornings I stocked up on several boxes of whole grain cereals to make sure they got a healthy breakfast before heading out for the day.  Of course, we are only 2 weeks into school and they are already sick of cereal!  I don’t get this, really.  I have always been a big fan of cereal and would happily eat it for breakfast, snacks and even dinner if I had the chance.  The kids, however, like a little bit more variety in their diet, apparently.  That … [Read more...]