Monday, November 30, 2020

Roasted Donkey Cabbages #AGrimmThanksgiving


Okay, I really have no idea what a donkey cabbage is. I opted to use the title of the tale to serve roasted Brussels sprouts for our 2020 Thanksgiving Grimm Menu though. This is my usual way to serve Brussels sprouts though this Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad is also delicious.

"The huntsman winds up in a cabbage patch and realizes he has been tricked. Some of the magic cabbages cause the man to become a donkey while others turn him back into a man. He feeds these cabbages to the maiden and her mother. The mother dies but the huntsman transforms the maiden back into her human form. The two are married." 
~Donkey Cabbages

Ingredients serves 8
  • 2 pounds Brussels sprouts, halved
  • olive oil
  • freshly ground salt
  • freshly ground pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Slice the Brussels sprouts in half, then place them in a mixing bowl. Drizzle them with enough olive oil to coat them and make them glisten. Season with salt and pepper.

Roast for 10 minutes. Move the sprouts around in the pan. Roast for another 10 minutes. When cooked and slightly browned, season with more salt and pepper and drizzle with more oil.

Serve hot or at room temperature.

The Ear of Corn-bread Stuffing #AGrimmThanksgiving

If you're wondering about the 'Ear of Corn' in the title, this was served alongside our roasted Cornish game hens for our Grimm Thanksgiving last week. You can read the rest of the food at my post: A Grimm Menu.

"One day a woman was walking along a grain field, and her little child, who was jumping along beside her, fell into a puddle and got his clothes dirty. The mother tore off a handful of the beautiful ears of grain and cleaned his clothes with them.

 The Lord was just then passing by, and when he saw her doing this, he became angry and said, 'From this time forth the grain-stalk shall bear no more ears of grain. Humans are not worthy of this heavenly gift.'

 The bystanders who heard this were horrified, fell to their knees, and begged him to leave at least something on the grain-stalk, even if they did not deserve it, at least for the sake of the innocent chickens, who otherwise would starve to death." 
~The Ear of Corn

I don't make stuffing (or dressing, depending on where in the country you are from) often, but when I do, I use a recipe I have been using since college...which was probably the last time I actually cooked a traditional menu turkey and all! 

This one uses bacon from local-to-me Pig Wizard which is our family favorite! And if you are wondering why I made so much, especially when we had a sheltered-in-place feast, that's a good question. But I did use the leftovers in some Savory Bread Pudding that was delicious.

Ingredients serves 10
  • 1/4 pound bacon, diced (if you are local-to-me, I use bacon from PigWizard)
  • 1-1/2 cup onions, diced
  • 1-1/2 cup celery, diced
  • 1 cup carrots, diced
  • 1/2 cup butter, diced
  • 4 Tablespoons fresh sage, thinly sliced
  • 4 cups sourdough, cubed
  • 3 cups French bread, cubed
  • 4 cups cornbread, cubed
  • 2 to 3 cups chicken stock
  • freshly ground salt, to taste
  • freshly ground pepper, to taste

Add diced bacon to a large pot. Cook until fat is rendered, but bacon is not crisped. Stir in the onions, celery, and carrots. Toss to coat them evenly with the bacon fat. Cook until the onions soften and begin to turn translucent, approximately 6 to 8 minutes.

Add in the diced butter and sage. Heat until the butter is melted and the sage is fragrant. Stir in the cubed bread and stir to coat.

Pour in 1/2 cup of stock at a time until the mixture comes together in clumps or how moist you prefer your stuffing. This will depend on how dry your breads are. I used 2-1/2 cups stock total.

Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve warm.

A Sneak Peak: The #ItalianFWT Bloggers Talk Italian Bubbles


This month, I am leading a discussion for the Italian Food Wine Travel bloggers about sparkling Italian wines...just in time for the holidays. 

You can read my invitation, here. You'll find more details in that post about the difference between Frizzante and Spumante; the different processes of creating bubbles - Metodo Classico, or Metodo Champenoise, versus Charmat, or Martinotti Method; and, while Prosecco is probably the most well-known Italian sparkling wine, at least in America, there's an entire range of Italian sparklers, including Prosecco Superiore or Prosecco DOCG, Lambrusco, Franciacorta, and more.

A few bloggers received a selection of Prosecco Superiore from the Consorzio of Prosecco Superiore DOCG, but everyone was free to explore any and all sparkling wines from Italy. Here's what the group will be sharing...

  • Terri of Our Good Life says Beviamo alla nostra! Prosecco Superiore and Happy Christmas!
  • Marcia of Joy of Wine is Celebrating the Season with sparkling Freisa.
  • Cindy of Grape Experiences writes about Pure Trentodoc – Sparkling Wines from the Mountains.
  • Jill of L'Ocsasion encourages us to Be in Italy for the Holidays with This Bubbly Wine Lineup.
  • Gwendolyn of Wine Predator pushes Beyond Prosecco? Try These Sustainable Sparkling Wines from Italy's Erbaluce, Franciacorta, Lambrusco, Pignoletto.
  • Lynn of Savor the Harvest gives us Valdobbiadene DOCG Prosecco to Make Your Holiday Sparkle - La Tordera Rive Di Guia.
  • Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm says Cheers to 2021...2020 Don't Let The Door Hit You On The Way Out.
  • Susannah of Avvinare pours Versatile Lambrusco for the Holidays.
  • Deanna of Asian Test Kitchen serves Val D'Oca Prosecco Paired with Party Starters.
  • Payal of Keep the Peas offers A ‘SeeYaNever2020’ Toast with Italian Bubbly.
  • Linda of My Full Wine Glass says Hello Again, Lambrusco - Everyone Deserves a Second Chance.
  • Jane of Always Ravenous pairs a Frizzante with Holiday Sweet Treats.
  • Robin of Crushed Grape Chronicles pours Prosecco - Joyful Bubbles to “Wring” Out 2020.
  • Jen of Vino Travels is ready to Sparkle up the Holidays with Italian Prosecco. 
  • Martin of ENOFYLZ Wine Blog offers A Taste of 21st Century Lambrusco; Paltrinieri Lambrusco di Sorbara Radice.
  • Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla is Celebrating with Prosecco Superiore Amidst the Pandemic.

And we'd love to have you join the live Twitter chat on Saturday, December 5th at 8am Pacific time. Follow the hashtag #ItalianFWT and be sure to add that to any tweets you post so we can see it.

Sunday, November 29, 2020

Olive Oil Gingerbread Muffins #MuffinMonday

Earlier in the year I saw a post from one of my favorite bloggers - Wendy at A Day in the Life on the Farm - and I realized that they've been having a muffin party for years without me. LOL. I emailed the host, Stacy of Food Lust People Love and got the scoop: "...last Monday of the month and no themes. We've been baking together since August 2015! Only one rule, you must use the muffin method (folding wet ingredients with dry - no creaming butter and sugar, etc.) to bake muffins."

I've been happily joining in for months now. This month is the penultimate Muffin Monday of 2020! Here's the muffin line-up...

Olive Oil Gingerbread Muffins

Yes, I am a little gingerbread-mad. Every year, after Halloween, I start thinking about different ways to make gingerbread. 

I am not joking when I say that I have gingerbread obsession. Really. Gingerbread is a family favorite and we love exploring different kinds of gingerbread cookies. We've made Danish Honningkagehjerter and Mexican Puerquitos (Gingerbread Pigs); I have created a Speculaas recipe that's similar to what I remember from the's not perfect, but it'll do! I have posted some Sherlock-inspired Gingernuts and Pierniczki (Polish Gingerbread Cookies). And those are just the cookies.

On the savory side of things, I have shared a Gingerbread Stuffing and for a French Winophiles Fête: Foie Gras on Pain d'Épices. So, for this event, I knew I needed to make a gingerbread muffin!

Ingredients makes 12 muffins
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3/4 cup dark molasses
  • 3 cups flour 
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1" knob of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1/2 cup organic dark brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • optional: paper liners, if desired; raw sugar for sprinkling


Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line your muffin pan with paper liners or grease the hollows of the pan. Set aside.

Place all of the ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.

Stir with a spatula or wooden spoon until everything is moistened and just combined.

Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin pan. Sprinkle the tops with raw sugar. Then, place the pan in the oven.

Bake at 425 degrees Fahrenheit for 5 minutes. Then reduce the temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and bake until the tops are cracked and the centers set, approximately 16 to 18 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean.

Allow to cook in the pans for 10 minutes before inverting the muffins out onto a wire rack. You can serve these warm - that's how we like it - or room temperature.

Saturday, November 28, 2020

Savory Bread Pudding #HolidayLeftovers #SundayFunday


Today we're in our fourth week of a new blogging group; a fun group will be sharing recipes on Sundays. Low stress, just a great group of gals that I am happy to blog alongside. Thanks to Stacy of Food Lust People Love, Sue of Palatable Pastime, Rebekah of Making Miracles, and Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm for coordinating.  Today Stacy is hosting and she's given us the prompt of using holiday leftovers. Perfect timing really as we are still sheltered in place, and just had the four of us around the table, but I didn't really adjust the sizes of what I usually make. Whoops.

In any case, here's the line-up of how the #SundayFunday bloggers are using their holiday leftovers...

Stuffing Repurposed

Here's my stuffing in its first iteration: as stuffing on our Thanksgiving plate, doused with a sweet paprika gravy.

And here it is as an individually-portioned bread pudding. My trio totally leveled up on the revamp by adding a dollop of mashed sweet potatoes and topping it with a gravy. Yeah, was pretty awesome, if I might say so myself. For this, use whatever version of stuffing (or dressing, if you call it that!) that you  have in your fridge. You don't need any extra seasoning because the stuffing is already seasoned. It's super simple and wonderfully tasty. 

Ingredients serves 6

  • 6 cups leftover stuffing
  • 3 eggs
  • Also needed: butter for greasing the muffin pan; mashed sweet potatoes and/or gravy for serving


Butter the muffin pan - or whatever you plan to use for baking - and preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Place the stuffing and eggs in a medium mixing bowl. With a wooden spoon or your hands, combine the stuffing and the eggs until evenly coated.

Scoop 1 cup of stuffing into each muffin hollow and gently compress the mixture to it forms to the shape of the pan.

Place the pan in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes, the bread pudding should be firm to the touch and slightly raised. Let cool in the pan for 5 minutes before running a butter knife around the edge and gently unmolding each portion.

Serve warm with a topping of sweet potatoes and/or gravy. And I served it with a Cornish game hen salad on the side. This was a super simple lunch when we came back from chopping down our Christmas tree. 

The holidays are definitely upon us, even though this year is vastly different with no friends and family around as we continue to shelter in place in the hopes of stopping this pandemic.

Next week the bloggers will return with cookie  recipes for Santa with Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm hosting. Stay tuned...

Cornish Game Hen Salad #HolidayLeftovers

If you, like me, have leftover roasted poultry from Thanksgiving, this is an easy way to use that up and give it a different look. Since we are still sheltered-in-place and didn't have a big Thanksgiving feast, I opted to roast Cornish game hens as an individual sized main dish. 

The boys joked that these were turkeys for elves or hobbits. Okay. And since we had such a large menu, we ended up with lots of leftover hen meat. 

Ingredients serves 4

  • 2 cups cooked Cornish game hens, shredded (or use chicken)
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup diced pickles (I used homemade bread and butter pickles)
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons mustard, depending on preference (start with 1 teaspoon)
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • freshly ground salt, as needed
  • freshly ground pepper, as needed
  • Also needed: bread, lightly toasted (I used a homemade sourdough) or crackers for serving


Pull the meat from the hens. I ended up with about 2 cups. Roughly chop the meat and place it in a medium mixing bowl.

Combine all ingredients together and stir with a fork until well-combined. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 

Serve on lightly toasted bread - I used some of my homemade sourdough - or crackers.

The Turnip and Potato Soup, The Three Green Twigs Salad, + Louis Jadot 2019 Rosé #TurkeyDayRosé #AGrimmThanksgiving #Sponsored

  This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Kobrand Wine and Spirits in conjunction with their #TurkeyDayRosé  event. Complimentary wine was provided for this post 
though no other compensation was received. This page may contain affiliate links.

This was part of the second course in my Grimm Thanksgiving menu. You can see the entire line-up here: A Grimm Menu + #TurkeyDayRosé Pairings.

"At length it was so enormous that by itself it filled a whole cart, and two oxen were required to draw it, and the farmer had not the least idea what he was to do with the turnip, or whether it would be a fortune to him or a misfortune. At last he thought, "if you sell it, what will you get for it that is of any importance, and if you eat it yourself, why, the small turnips would do you just as much good. It would be better to take it to the king, and make him a present of it."
~The Turnip

"The hermit, after he had converted the three sinners, lay down to sleep again under the stairs. In the morning, however, they found him dead, and out of the dry wood on which his head lay, three green twigs had grown up on high. Thus the Lord had once more received him into his favour."
~The Three Green Twigs 

The Three Green Twigs Salad didn't end up being very photogenic, however, it was just salad greens, a nice vinaigrette, blanched asparagus (twig number one), blanched green beans (twig number two), and cucumber spears (twig number three). So, this post will only include the turnip and potato soup.

The Turnip and Potato Soup
The Three Green Twigs Salad
Louis Jadot 2019 Rosé

During the Fall and Winter I make a lot of soups. I love that you can just throw everything into a big pot, put it on the stove and you have a filling meal. You can also, as I did for this version, roast the veggies before using them in soup. That brings out some of the sweetness in the root vegetables.


  • 2 cups turnips, scrubbed and halved or quartered, depending on how big the turnips are
  • 6 cups potatoes, scrubbed and halved or quartered, depending on how big the potatoes are
  • 1 cup onions, peeled and halved or quartered, depending on how big the onions are
  • freshly ground salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup bacon, diced (if you are local-to-me, I use bacon from PigWizard)
  • 1/2 cup onion, peeled and diced
  • 3  to 4 cloves garlic, peeled and pressed
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup milk or half-and-half
  • 1/4 cup fresh herbs (I used a mixture of parsley and thyme)

  • 2 turnips, scrubbed and thickly sliced
  • olive oil
  • freshly ground salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • fried onions (you can make your own, I bought them at Whole Foods)
  • Also needed: sourdough bread for serving


Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Place turnips, potatoes, and onions on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and peppers. Place in the oven and roast for 25 to 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes these won't be completely cooked, but the edges should start to have a golden or brown tinge to them. That color adds delicious flavor to your soup. You can adjust the time on the bake if you want even more color on your root veggies.

While the vegetables are roasting, start on the stove-top part.

Add diced bacon to a large pot. Cook until fat is rendered, but bacon is not crisped. Stir in the onions and garlic. Toss to coat them evenly with the bacon fat. Cook until the onions soften and begin to turn translucent, approximately 6 to 8 minutes.

Remove your tray of veggies from the oven and place them in the pot with the bacon. Toss to coat evenly with the bacon fat. Pour in the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until the turnips are easily mashed with a fork.

Remove from heat and let cool for 5 to 10 minutes. Then, in batches, process in a blender until smooth.

Return the pureed soup to the pot and stir in the milk. Heat to warm again, then fold in the herbs. Season to taste with salt and pepper, as needed.

Garnish: Baked Turnip Chips
Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Place sliced turnips on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place in the oven for 22 to 25 minutes. The turnips should be crisped and nicely browned on the skins. Set aside until ready to serve.

To serve, ladle into individual serving bowls. Garnish with fried onions and a few baked turnips chips.

Offer a slice of sourdough bread of the side. Serve immediately.

Louis Jadot 2019 Rosé

Founded in the mid-nineteenth century by the eponymous Louis Henry Denis Jadot, the Louis Jadot estate has established itself as a reliable producer of both red and white Burgundy wines. This wine, from the Côteaux Bourguignons AOC, is a single varietal wine made of 100% Gamay grapes.

To the eye, this Rosé is a lovely pale salmon color. On the nose it had aromas of light florals and raspberries. However, on the palate, the wine was more tart than I anticipated. Flavors of red currant were pronounced and provided a lively note alongside my creamy, earthy turnip and potato soup.

on the web, on Facebook, on Twitter, and Instagram
*Disclosure: I received compensation in the form of wine samples for recipe development and generating social media traction. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the organizer and sponsors of this event.

Friday, November 27, 2020

The Crumbs on the Table Around a Sausage-wrapped Egg + Chateau d’Aqueria 2019 Tavel Rosé #TurkeyDayRosé #AGrimmThanksgiving #Sponsored

 This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Kobrand Wine and Spirits in conjunction with their #TurkeyDayRosé  event. Complimentary wine was provided for this post 
though no other compensation was received. This page may contain affiliate links.

"...the countryman let [his little puppies] have no peace until at last they went, and got on the table, and ate up the bread-crumbs with all their might. But at that very moment the mistress came, and seized the stick in great haste, and beat them and treated them very hardly."
~The Crumbs on the Table 

The Crumbs on the Table Around a Sausage-wrapped Egg
2019 Chateau d’Aqueria Tavel Rosé

When I started thinking about what to make that used breadcrumbs, I remembered that Hansel and Gretel dropped breadcrumbs in the forest to find their way back home. But I had already planned to make Hansel and Gretel Gingerbreads. So, I thought about my favorite breaded appetizer: a Scotch egg.

And I had just picked up a dozen duck eggs from Lake Family Forest Farms at our Sunday farmers' market where I was also picking up some meats from Pig Wizard. That sounded like a serendipitous match!

Ingredients serves 8
  • 1 pound ground sausage with no casing (I bought this Sicilian sausage locally at PigWizard), divided into 2 ounce portions
  • 8 large boiled eggs, peeled (I used Peking duck eggs from Lake Family Forest Farms, boiled for 2 minutes, then let them cool in the water before peeling)
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • ½ cup bread crumbs (I used Italian-style to match the Sicilian sausage flavors)
  • Also need for serving: assorted pickles on the side, microgreens for garnish


Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Place beaten egg in one bowl and bread crumbs in another bowl.

Flatten sausage into a thin patty and place the egg in the center. Gently wrap the egg with the sausage, pressing gently until it's completely covered and sealed around the egg.

Roll the sausage in the egg wash. Then roll in bread crumbs until completely covered.

Place finished eggs on the prepared baking sheet and place in the oven. Bake for 22 to 24 minutes until sausage is fully cooked through.

Serve warm. I served these with an assortment of pickles including carrots, beans, beets, onions, and peppers. I haven't posted all of the pickle recipes yet, but this course included my Dukkah-Spiced Quick Pickled Carrots. And I poured the 2019 Chateau d’Aqueria Tavel Rosé from Kobrand Wine and Spirits* as a match.

Tavel Rosé

This Rosé, a Grenache-based blend of grapes typical of the southern Rhône Valley, was a stunning clear geranium color in the glass. The grapes were hand-harvested from the Château d’Aqueria estate whose vineyards span 163 acres across the sandy slopes of Tavel. It was interesting to read how the each of the grape varieties are destemmed and macerated to extract color, then blended two at a time to achieve desired color and structure. The wine is fermented in stainless steel for just over two weeks and is blended twice before bottling.

As I wrote - to the eye - this wine is a gorgeous color. On the palate it was a bone-dry but hefty Rosé that could hold its own against the sausage-wrapped eggs.


on the web, on Facebook, on Twitter, and Instagram
*Disclosure: I received compensation in the form of wine samples for recipe development and generating social media traction. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the organizer and sponsors of this event.