To Blanch or Not To Blanch….

“What is blanch?”  my daughter asked as I began this blog.  Add an “e” at the end and it’s French for white, but in cooking, it means to boil about 30 seconds and I like blanching certain vegetables, like carrots, broccoli and cauliflower, before adding them to my winter salads.  It takes the edge off… Read more »

A Wine Pairing Worth Noting

Our wine tasting group reunited this weekend.  For a decade plus 8, we’ve been blind tasting wines, rating and ranking them, discussing their attributes and testing our ability to guess varietal, vintage and more.   This time we tasted zins from Dry Creek.  Living in the bulls-eye of California wine country, in Sonoma, we have more… Read more »

Pea Soup Anyone?

At less than $2 per person, I’m beating the cost of a Happy Meal.

Go Asian!

My family members appreciate when I do a twist on the salad dressing.  I first learned this recipe when I worked at two of Lisa Hemenway’s Santa Rosa restaurants while I was attending Sonoma State.  It’ll instantly add an Asian flare to any vegetables or salad. 2 parts unseasoned rice vinegar 4 parts oil (you can use part sesame… Read more »

Ooh La La, They’ll Be Begging For French Dip Sandwiches

Lucky’s had a good deal on a several pound tri tip roast a couple weeks ago. I bought it for just under $15, cut it in half and sent it to the freezer. Given that it was mid-week, I was tempted to use the Schilling packet of au jus we had on hand. The food… Read more »

Homemade Valentine's For School This Monday

This Monday is an exciting day at school and once again, we will be making heart shaped sugar cookies for the classroom exchange.  It’s a fun activity to do with kids because they get to do a lot of decorating.  I’ve found the perfect cookie bags in the cake department at Michael’s.  They are just the right size… Read more »

Superbowl Pretzels

Ramona asked for the recipe for the Superbowl Day Pretzels… I’m thrilled she’s still reading! I point to the Food Network (Alton Brown, see below) recipe with 5 stars and almost 300 reviews, it’s a winner. Kids love to make pretzels and their parents love to eat them. It’s a fun family project that will… Read more »

Superbowl 45

Fresh Pretzels (OMG, these were over the top) Homefried Corn Chips (thank you Susan!) and Guacamole Way-Asian Wings Simply Mojitos Dallas Chili & Mashed Spud Sliders Green Bay Slaw Tolltaker Cookies

Tale from the Trenches: On Background Checks

Beginning this year, Bolt Staffing started performing criminal background checks on all employees prior to placing them on long term assignments with our clients.  Until now, we’ve followed industry practice and performed checks on people placed in positions of trust such as accounting personnel, or when requested by our clients. While that has proved adequate, we… Read more »

Put some pasta in your pilaf….

My brother taught me two things about rice pilaf. Actually, three things. The first: to use just a 1/4 of a cup of minced onion, not too much. The second is to add vermicelli and the third is to bake in the oven instead of stove top. Tonight I tried the last two of his… Read more »