Eating is a necessity. However, we choose what to eat. The choices we make reveal a great deal about us. The food you eat can tell quite a bit about your heritage, your family, your fears, your sense of adventure, your attitude toward yourself and others, and a myriad of other personal tidbits to anyone paying attention. Everything about eating is a glimpse into your soul.

I hope to reveal a little bit about myself to you through my food. I enjoy cooking. I enjoy eating. I find pleasure in bringing pleasure to others. I hope that by sharing my recipes I bring you a little bit of joy.

Cook my food. Feed it to the people you love.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Cheeseburger Gnocchi

Cheeseburger Gnocchi
We are still staying in as much as possible even though restaurants are opening up. Most years, I try to come up with a new burger recipe for Memorial Day, as burgers are great for summer and summer is just beginning. However, lockdown has forced me to get creative and try changing up old ideas.

Cheeseburger Gnocchi is a twist on Cheeseburger Pasta which is a twist on the  Burgers we all know and love. This is really easy to make and takes no time and no talent. Inexpensive and kid friendly,  Cheeseburger Gnocchi is also really tasty, comfort food.

Servings: 4-6
Hardware:  A cutting board and knives, measuring spoons and cups, a can opener, a skillet that can be used on the stove top and in the oven, a large pot, a colander, a slotted spoon or a skimmer, a wooden spoon 
Time:  Cook time: 30 minutes, active time: 20 minutes, Dinner in about 40 minutes

  • 16 ounces gnocch
  • 1 ½ ground chuck
  • 1 cup chopped onion (5 oz)
  • 1 can of Original Ro-Tel-drained
  • 3 tablespoons of ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon Montreal steak seasoning
  • ½ tablespoon of mustard
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • ½ + ½  cups shredded Cheddar cheese
  • Optional: seeded and chopped tomatoes, chopped green onions
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 400˚. Chop the onion. Open and drain the Ro-Tel. Put the large pot of water onto boil.
  2. Cook and crumble the ground chuck over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until the meat is no longer pink. This should take about 7 minutes. Drain. Return the meat mixture to the skillet.  Stir in the ketchup, steak seasoning, mustard, soy sauce, and drained Ro-tel. Turn to low.
  3. Add the gnocchi to the boiling water. Gnocchi cooks in 3-4 minutes. It is done when it floats. Use the slotted spoon or skimmer to scoop the floating pasta out of the pot and place it in the skillet with the meat mixture.
  4. When all the pasta is in the skillet, add ½ cup of cheese and stir. Taste and adjust the salt.
  5. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top of the dish. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the cheese is bubbling. 
  6. Rest for 5 minutes before serving.You can top the gnocchi with chopped tomatoes and green onions before serving.

Sunday, May 3, 2020

Walnut Crusted, Oven Baked, Lemon-Dill Tilapia

Walnut Crusted, Oven Baked, Lemon-Dill Tilapia

This is the beginning of our eighth week of the shelter-in-place order to slow the spread of the coronavirus. We are only going out when we absolutely must. My mother lives with us and is immuno-compromised because she is receiving chemo. Last Thursday I made a grocery run. We have been eating shelf-stable food (cans and jars.) I needed something fresh! I bought fish.

I purchased tilapia because my mom will eat it. I decided to encrust it because it keeps the fish moist and because it is yummy! I had walnuts so I chose to use them. You could use pecans. I love Honey Mustard, so I made a Honey Mustard Cream Sauce. You could also choose to use different seasonings and sauces. If you wanted to use Cajun seasoning, you would serve this with Rémoulade Sauce. Replace the lemon-pepper with taco seasoning and the dill with cilantro and use Lime Chipotle Mayo as a topping for a south of the border dish.

I served the fish with Orzo Pilaf (I replaced the onion with garlic) and fresh steamed broccoli with a squeeze of lemon.

Servings: 4-6
Time:  Prep:10 minutes; Cooking:12-15 minutes; Dinner in less than 30 minutes.
Hardware:  An airtight container, measuring spoons and cups, 2 forks, paper towels, 2 large shallow bowls or plates with high sides (I use pie plates for this), foil, a baking sheet, a large spatula (or a fish turner)


  • 1-pound tilapia fillets
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • ¾ cup ground walnuts
  • 1½ cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon + ½ tablespoon lemon pepper seasoning (salt free)
  • 2 teaspoons + 1 teaspoon dried dill
  • S&P to taste
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 egg
  • Cooking spray
  • A little chopped parsley for garnish

Sauce Ingredients:

  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • A pinch of salt

  1. Mix the sauce ingredients in the airtight container and put it in the fridge until dinner.
  2. Preheat the oven to 450°.  Line the baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
  3. Rinse the fish in clean water and pat dry. Cut into serving sizes. Generously salt and pepper both sides of the fish pieces. Season them with ½ tablespoon lemon pepper seasoning and 1 teaspoon dried dill. Set aside.
  4. Mix the crumbs, walnuts, and the rest of the lemon pepper seasoning and dried dill in one of the bowls/plates. Beat the egg and yogurt together in the second bowl. Put the flour in the last bowl.
  5. Dip each fillet into the flour, then the yogurt mixture, then into the crumb mixture. You may need to press a little of the crumbs onto the fish to make sure that it is completely coated.
  6. Place the fish onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake the fish for 7 minutes and then turn with the spatula. Bake for 5-7 minutes on the second side depending on the thickness of the fillets.  Be careful to not over cook the fish.  It is done when it is opaque and flakes easily.
  7. To serve top each piece of fish with some sauce and sprinkle on some chopped parsley.