Thursday, August 28, 2014

Homemade Mini Pop Tarts

This recipe has been "Popping" up all over the internet.  It was too cute not to try.  It is surprisingly very easy, and relatively mess free.  I hope you have fun with these.


* Ready-made pie crust
* Strawberry jam
* 1 egg white
* White cookie icing (i bought mine from the store, but you can make with powdered sugar and milk)
* Colorful sprinkle topping


Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Roll out one pie crust so it is approximately 1/8 inch thick.  With a rectangular cookie cutter, cut 36 molds.

Place 18 rectangles on a parchment lined cookie sheet.  Save the remaining 18 rectangles for the tops.  Place 1/4 teaspoon of strawberry jam in the center of each rectangle.  Make sure the jam doesn't reach the edge.  With a small brush or your finger, brush the edges of your rectangles with the egg white.

Puncture holes in the remaining rectangles to allow for ventilation when baking, and place atop the prepared rectangles, making sure edges align.  Crimp edges with a fork.

Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes or until edges become golden.

When cooled, top each pastry with cookie icing and decorate with sprinkles.


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Vegetable Lasagna

Whenever I make this pesto vegetable lasagna at work there is hardly any left. So I know this is a must have recipe!


  • 16 oz store bought pesto (or you can make your own)
  • 2 zucchini, thinly sliced
  • 5 cups spinach, sauteed ( I usually measure with handfuls of spinach)
  • 1 cup mushrooms, sauteed
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1 package of lasagna noodles

1. Boil water in a large pot and add the lasagna noodles. Cook the noodles for about 3-5 minutes, or until the are soft enough to work with. Drain the noodles, but reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
2. Add the pasta water to the pesto sauce and mix well.
3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
4. For the lasagna pour some of the pesto sauce on the bottom of a pan, (just to coat the bottom) then layer the lasagna noodles, add some more of the pesto sauce,  mushrooms, spinach, zucchini, and the cheeses. Repeat this process 2 more times.  end with the rest of the vegetables, sauce and cheese on top.
5. Cover with foil and cook for about 40 minutes, take off the foil and finish in the oven for 15 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly.


Monday, August 25, 2014

Peach Guacamole

I LOVE guacamole, and one day at work while I was making guacamole there were peaches next to me. So, I thought what would happen if I put peaches in guacamole, and like 2 peas in a pod, I knew this combination was meant to be.  This might be Erin's favorite recipe of mine, so here you go sister!


  • 1/2 medium red onion, chopped
  • 2 peaches, small diced
  • 3 avocados, chopped
  • 2 lemons, juiced
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 jalepeno, small diced

1. Mix all the ingredients togerher. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving.
2. Re-season with salt and pepper if needed and serve with chips. 


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Nemo Treats: Great for Luch Boxes

It has been quite some time since my sisters and I have created a new post on this blog.  We have had many wonderful life changes over the past few years: new babies, a marriage, and a whole lot of wonderful memories created between us.  I have been busy in the kitchen this summer creating and experimenting with new recipes.  Some are my creations, others are wonderful delicious recipes from bloggers, authors, and family members.  I look forward to sharing them with you soon.  

The recipe I am posting today is so simple and creative.  It put a smile on my face when I first saw it.  I made a whole bunch today, and my little guy will be sent to school with them in his lunch box tomorrow.  

Nemo Treats

  • Dried apricots
  • White candy melts
  • Raisins

Prepare your fish by cutting one apricot in half.  This will be the front (head) and back of the body.  Cut another apricot in thirds.  The middle and one of the ends will be the body and tail of Nemo.  Repeat this step until you have your desired amount.  I made 24 fish.  

Melt white candy in a double boiler or microwave.

Begin by laying down the head of your fish on a parchment lined cookie sheet.  Dip part of the body in the white candy and attach it to the head.  Now dip the back of the fish in the white candy and attach to the body.  Finally dip the tail and attach it to the back.  Repeat until all your fish are assembled.  Once the fish are assembled on the sheet, do not attempt to move them until they are completely dry.  You can put them in the refrigerator to speed up the drying process.

Once you have completed the previous step, dip one raisin in the candy melt and attach it to the head.  Now your fish is complete.

Enjoy these cute treats at kid parties, one the road, or in a lunch box :)


Recipe adapted from

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Grilled Pork Chop in Chili Lime Cilantro Sauce

I recently moved home and in with my parents! Everyone asks "why did you leave San Diego for Fresno"? And the answer is simple, I missed my family, and I had a great job opportunity. I have been home for about a month now and I have no regrets. I have not started my new job yet... but it has been nice catching up with my sisters and their sons. Last night was beautiful outside and I made dinner for my parents. Nothing better then great food,  nice weather, and GREAT WINE!


  • 4 pork chops 
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 1 garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped 
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried hot red peppers ( more if you like a little kick)
  • 1/3 cup olive oil 
  • salt and pepper

Method of prep
  1. Make the chili lime cilantro sauce mix the lime juice, garlic, dijon mustard, cilantro, red peppers, and salt and pepper. In a slow stream add the olive oil and whisk until combined. Let rest for about an hour
  2. Turn the grill on medium heat. Season the pork chops with some salt and pepper.
  3. Grill the pork chops until the are done. Plate and drizzle the sauce over the chops. Serve immediately . 
  4. I served this with sauteed brussel sprouts with salt pepper and garlic in olive oil. 
Chefs nots: This sauce is great for grilling. You can make this sauce and add it to chicken, steak, or even fish such as halibut. 

Steak Fries

I also made this for my parents with the pork chops.


  • 3 large russet potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons seasoning blend ( I used lawrys seasoning salt) 
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 
Method of prep
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Cut the potatoes into medium wedges.
  3. In a big bowl toss the potatoes with salt, pepper, seasoning blend, and vegetable oil.
  4. Spread in a single layer the potatoes on a sheet pan fitted with a silpat if you have one if not oil the baking pan. 
  5. Bake in the oven for about 35 to 40 minutes or until tender.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Pork Chops Smothers in BBQ Sauce

OK so don't judge me, but this recipe is so easy its ridiculous. It is one pot and easy clean up.

4 pork chops bone in
1-2 cups bbq sauce (your preference)
1 red bell pepper
1 red onion
salt and pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder

Method of prep
1. preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large pyrex lay down a sheet of foil. Add the pork chops and season with salt pepper and garlic powder.
2. Cut the bell peppers and onions in strips and lay over the chops. Add the bbq sauce, (you can be heavy handed on this, the sauce will absorb).
3. Bake for about 40 minutes or until done. If the vegetables start getting burnt add foil over the top to finish cooking.

Since we used foil on the bottom of the pyrex all you have to do for clean up is throw away the foil and rinse out the pan. No fuss no mess.

I also paired this dish with broccolini. I learned to cook this at The Golden Door and it is also simple. Blanch the brocollini for 3 minutes ( Place them in boiling water, then add them to an ice bath to stop the cooking.) Then when your ready to eat heat up oil in a pan add the broccoli and 2 minced garlic cloves, sautee until hot, and you have an amazing side dish.

- Tara