Chocolate-Pistachio Sablés

It’s a double-edged sword to have a kid who loves to bake. On the one hand, I can print out recipes for sinful treats and within a couple of days I’m enjoying warm goodies right out of the oven, thanks to him. On the other hand, I can’t keep myself from invading the cookie jar 12 times a day when something is a smash-hit like these Chocolate-Pistachio Sablés!

They’re super-easy to make: you roll the dough into logs, chill, slice and bake. They’re rich and a little crumbly, with the crunch of pistachios and the creaminess of chocolate chunks. They’re not too sweet. And they’re sprinkled with sea salt. Need I go any further?

Whether you’re looking for…

I’m an especially lucky mom these days. One of my guys adores baking, and if I text him a recipe that has a drool-worthy picture, chances are pretty good he’ll whip up a batch within a day or two.

Such was the case with these decadent peanut butter cookies. They’re rich little treasures, filled with peanut butter cream and mini chocolate chips. I found them in a Food52 post on Friday, and when I got home from a very cool car show with my auto enthusiast son on Sunday, there was a plate of these—beautifully made—on the kitchen counter. Bless his heart!

Generous guy that he is, he made the cookies about three times larger than called…

I haven’t done a recipe blog post in months, but I made this bowl of scrumptiousness the other night and couldn’t keep it to myself!

It’s a recipe from Andrew Zimmern in Food & Wine, and as soon as I read it, I knew it had to be Sunday dinner. This bolognese is layered, complex, luscious and indulgent. There are nuances of smokiness from the bacon, fruitiness from the wine and sweetness from the butternut squash. But what stands out, amazingly, is the delicate veal flavor.

My whole family was, quite simply, blown away. And it takes a lot to blow us away culinarily. They can’t wait for me to make it again, and when I do, I…

Baked S’mores Bars

Oooey-gooey s’mores. They conjure happy memories of warm summer nights under the stars: toasting a marshmallow to golden perfection, carefully sliding it onto a crisp graham cracker, topping it with a square of chocolate and another cracker, and watching all the melty lusciousness ooze out the sides of the sandwich. Comfort food doesn’t get much better than that!

While I can’t promise that these baked s’mores bars will transport you right to that same happy place, they do have the potential to make even the grumpiest monsters smile. The top and bottom crust (the “graham cracker”) is soft like a blondie. The chocolate is literally some chocolate bars placed on top of the crust. And the marshmallow…

Sure, chocolate’s the expected choice for a Valentine’s Day dessert, but c’mon, doesn’t this sweet and glossy raspberry dream look festive and romantic too?

A traditional English dessert, Eton Mess is commonly made with strawberries, layered with meringue and whipped cream, and it’s named for the college in the UK where it was created back in the 1800s. This variation, adapted from the Barefoot Contessa, features plump, glorious raspberries. The sweet meringue pieces contrast the tangy berries and add a delightful crispy crunch, and it all swirls together on your spoon with the help of fresh whipped cream.

To top it off, Eton Mess is a cinch to make. The raspberry sauce takes but a few minutes on…

Tiramisu, the classic Italian dessert featuring creamy, sweet mascarpone cheese and lady fingers dipped in spiked espresso, is my twins’ favorite comfort food dessert. They order it anywhere it’s on the menu, and often have opinionated discussions on the merits of each particular tiramisu recipe. For a while, they’ve wanted to try making it at home, and have pored over dozens of tiramisu recipes to find one that sounded good.

What they didn’t know until recently is that when they were much younger (back in the days when they though it was called “Tirami Soup,”) I was the tiramisu queen. I used to throw them together for dinner parties, much to the swooning admiration of my appreciative guests, who…

comfort food, spicy chicken wings

Is there any better Super Bowl comfort food than chicken wings? Crispy skin. Spicy, tangy sauce that drips down your chin and tempts you to lick your fingers. Chased by refreshing gulps of frosty, crisp beer.

Chicken wings, of course, are perfectly suited for an endless variety of sauces. Buffalo sauce, barbeque sauce, sticky-sweet teriyaki sauce. All good, and all in our rotating chicken wing repertoire. But we came across a recipe that blows away all other chicken wings. The star of the show is Thai hot sauce, also known as sriracha, and the supporting flavors include the warm — almost exotic — nuances of cinnamon, coriander and cumin. Fresh cilantro cools the sauce, while lime juice…

Baked Kale Chips

Our whole family has fallen head-over-heels with kale chips! What’s not to love about a crispy, healthy snack that’s a snap to make? It’s literally no more difficult than slicing up kale leaves, tossing with olive oil and baking for 20 minutes. What emerges from the oven is delicate and delicious, satisfying the crunchy-salty snack craving.

What type of kale works best? I’ve tried both Lacinato (“dinosaur kale”) and the curly variety. Both have that mild cabbage-y flavor, but I prefer the Lacinato, as it’s easier to cut and comes out flat.

Jazz it up any way you like by adding herbs or other flavors during the tossing step. You can try grated parmesan or asiago cheese,…

Spicy Tomato Soup

You need to make this tomato soup. It’s bright and spicy and savory and sweet and best of all, easy. In fact, with very little effort, you can bring a smile to a tableful of eaters, especially if you pair it with yummy grilled cheese. I know I did last week!

The key is to adapt the spiciness to your taste by adjusting the amount of crushed red pepper. Start with less and add until you’re happy with the zing. Remember, you can always add more, but you can’t take it out. Once it’s got the right degree of heat, blend and strain it, and you’re ready to go.

The soup was so simple to make that…

Andrea’s Potato Latkes

I have a couple of gifts for y’all during the holiday season, beginning with my recipe for crunchy-on-the-outside, soft-on-the-inside Potato Latkes. I developed the recipe years ago when my boys were little, and it was an instant family favorite. Now I have to double or triple it (oy!) so that I manage to get a few of these scrumptious, savory treats myself before my bottomless-pit teenagers descend!

To all who celebrate, sweet wishes for a Happy Hanukkah. May it be eight nights filled with warmth, light, love and miracles.

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