Monthly Archives: October 2010

The Savoury Side of Halloween

Initially I had planned on showcasing a number of sweet culinary delights for my Halloween blog post. I had a stack of magazines with numerous pages folded over all ready to go, each detailing a sugary treat bound to satisfy the sweetest of sweet teeth.

It was going to be epic.

But between all of the sugar induced comas resulting from school Halloween parties, back-to-back birthday celebrations let alone the anticipated haul of candy on the big night itself; I became sugared out. As a result, I thought it would be fun to showcases the savoury side of Halloween.

First off I took the recipe for the most amazing Chutney Cheese Torte (click here for the recipe) and gave it a fun face full of veggies and a head full of mango chutney. The cheese mixture can be made a day ahead, leaving very little prep to do the day of your party.

Next I made a fun and slightly creepy appetizer that came from Taste of Home Magazine, called Bloodshot Eyeballs (click here for the recipe). It’s a basic devilled egg but before you peel off the shell you crack the egg and let it soak in a hot water and vinegar mixture doused with your food colouring colour of choice. This leaves a fun pattern on the outside of the egg. Add a slice of olive and some chopped pimento and voila – creepy eyeballs! NOTE: Mr. Spock has a severe devilled egg addiction (his only request for our wedding menu) but was so disturbed by the appearance of these eggs that he not so politely refrained from partaking. His loss – they tasted great!

Another recipe I tried was for Puffy Sausage Mummies, also from Taste of Home Magazine click here for the recipe). I opted to use breakfast sausages which I precooked to get them nice and brown, prior to wrapping them in the puff pastry. These were great in both taste and visual impact! This was definitely a favourite with the kids.

To round off my Halloween spread? A veggie tray of course! In order to jazz up the presentation I hollowed out a small pumpkin and set a dish with dip inside. Not only did this look great, but put some ice in the bottom of the pumpkin and it will keep your dip nice and cool.

What are some of your favourite Halloween treats? I would love to hear what you crave this time of year. Got a spooktacular recipe? Please share!

National Popcorn Poppin’ Month

One of the world’s most popular snack foods has an entire month dedicated to its consumption. Yup – October is officially National Popcorn Poppin’ Month, and the folks over at The Popcorn Board (a non-profit organization funded by US popcorn processors) are busy raising awareness and promoting the consumption of this tasty popped snack food. For more than 25 years popcorn has been celebrated during the month of October, and in 1999 the designation became official. Why October? Because this is the time when the popcorn harvest takes place in the Midwest.

Corn was first discovered in South America close to five thousand years ago, and quickly spread to North America where Native Americans introduced it to the English in the 16th and 17th centuries. It is the small droplet of water within the corn kernel that causes it to expand and pop when exposed to high heat, turning the kernel inside out. Popped corn was an integral part of Aztec Indian ceremonies, where it was used to decorate headdresses, necklaces and other ceremonial ornaments.

Today, the majority of popcorn comes from the United States where 16 billion quarts is produced each year (52 quarts per person). It has even become the official state snack for Illinois! Popcorn comes in a variety of shapes including; ‘snowflake’ or ‘butterfly’ (looks and pops big) and ‘mushroom’ (used for candy confections due to its round shape and because it doesn’t crumble). It also comes in an assortment of colours such as red or blue kernels, although no matter what the colour of corn all kernels will pop white. Popcorn also comes in a wide variety of flavours, everything from extra butter to chocolate-marshmallow, Cajun and even jalapeño. No matter your taste preference guaranteed there’s a flavour shaker just for you!

Because popcorn is a whole grain, it provides carbohydrates and fibre and is naturally low in fat and calories. Of course like anything healthy, douse it in enough bad oil, butter and salt and suddenly popcorn ain’t so good for you anymore! In fact, a recent study conducted on movie theatre popcorn found that a medium-sized popcorn and soda can pack the nutritional equivalent of up to three Quarter Pounder Burgers topped with 12 pats of butter. Yikes – all those calories for mediocre tasting popcorn that has been sitting way too long under a heat lamp and costs more than the actual movie ticket.

The invention of microwave popcorn in the 1980’s helped catapult this popular munchie to the top of the snack food chain. In fact, popping popcorn has become the main function of microwave ovens with the majority of machines having a specific popcorn setting! However in our household the favourite way to enjoy popcorn is simply to pop it over the stove (click here for the World’s Best Popcorn recipe). Definitely healthier not to mention tastier than movie theatre popcorn, although plain air-popped popcorn is the healthiest way to indulge at 31 calories per cup, with oil-popped corn 55 calories per cup and movie theatre popcorn 60-80 calories per cup.

Want to add flavouring? Why not try Chef Michael Smith’s addictive Butterscotch Popcorn (click here for the recipe) or Gale Gand’s Cheddar Cheese Popcorn (click here for the recipe). Confession? Ever since my trip to Chicago I have been craving the city’s famous Garrett’s Chicago Mix Popcorn, so I ended up mixing the two flavours and making my own version!

Bon Appétit Magazine: October Cover Recipe

Apple Torte with Breadcrumb-Hazelnut Crust

Rating: 2 out of 5 (incredibly frustrating recipe, results were poor)

Initial Thoughts:
Oh goodie – another dessert! And this slice of apple torte looks like fall served on a plate. Yum…

The Test:
Because this dish looked so appealing on the cover of Bon Appétit, I decided to make this for my family’s Thanksgiving dinner. Whoa – did all of the entertaining gurus out there all just gasp in unison?! I know you aren’t supposed to try a new recipe when you have a bunch of people turning up to your house to eat; it’s too risky. But in this case I was sucked in by the pretty picture and the fact that famed Italian chef Lidia Bastianich developed the recipe. What could possibly go wrong?


I didn’t get a chance to properly read through the recipe until the day of our Thanksgiving dinner. (Another faux pas when trying a new recipe for the first time and dinner guests mere hours away from descending upon your house). If I had read it beforehand I would have immediately noticed that the recipe is confusing and doesn’t make a whole lot of sense! The list of ingredients for the crust calls for 8 cups of fresh breadcrumbs, but in the directions it says to use 3 cups. Hold the phone; am I missing something here?! But the clock was ticking so I shrugged off my doubts and got to work.

Because the recipe calls for ‘fresh’ breadcrumbs, I bought two loaves of French bread. Slicing the crusts off fresh bread was not fun. Not to mention incredibly messy! I tore the bread into bite sized pieces and measured out 8 cups which I toasted in the oven. Then I ground the bread in my food processor and measured out 3 cups of crumbs. Ha! So that’s how they got 8 cups to make 3 cups. Lidia’s math wasn’t off after all…

After chilling my dough for the suggested amount of time I proceeded to press out 9 inch disks to fit my pie plate. Quickly I realized there was no possible way I was going to be able to shape this strange breadcrumb dough into a large enough size. What were they thinking?! The recipe describes the whole process as if you were working with regular pastry dough and offers no tips or advice. In the end I made smaller sized crusts which fit perfectly into my individual sized tart pans. They looked cute but how would they taste?

One for the torte…

…and one for the cook!

It was at this point that I grabbed a Tenderflake pie crust from my freezer, doctored up a can of pure pumpkin I happened to have on hand, and started baking my plan B.

Next I moved on to the apple filling which also proved to be a frustrating experience. The recipe dictates that you must cook the fruit until tender, but mine just turned into apple sauce mush. Tasty, but definitely not the structured filling one desires in a torte.

At this point plan B was promoted to plan A.

The Results:
I was beginning to develop a complex about my cooking skills until I went online and read other comments posted about this recipe. What made it a flop? Lack of clarity for one thing. I wish the recipe had provided more direction; in particular the differing amounts of breadcrumb quantities, tips for the crust preparation, and even husking the hazelnuts (for which absolutely no instruction was provided). If it hadn’t been for the fact that I recently made Gale Gand’s Chocolate-Hazelnut Spread I would have had no idea how to best go about this process.

Before taking my first bite of the torte I thought to myself that perhaps the taste would make worthwhile all of the sweat and tears I shed for its preparation. If it tasted good I would be happy. Course I would never ever make it again, but I would still be happy.

Unfortunately the taste was just another in a long line of disappointments when it came to this recipe. The texture of the crust was incredibly odd, and instead of holding a true hazelnut flavour it merely tasted like breadcrumbs mixed with melted butter. I would have preferred to have had the hazelnuts featured more prominently in the overall taste. The lemon zest in the crust was a little startling, and the filling was very ordinary.

In the end we all cast aside the torte and focussed on the pumpkin pie. Thank god for canned pumpkin and pre-made pastry shells!

(For a copy of October’s recipe, please click here)

As part of my culinary new years resolutions, I have committed to creating each month’s cover recipe from Bon Appétit Magazine. Inspired by a New York restaurant owner who has been making the magazine’s cover recipes each month for the last 25 years, I decided to attempt to do the same while blogging about my monthly experiences along the way.

NOTE: If any of you would like to follow along with me and join in on the fun, I’d love to compare notes! So pick-up a copy of the latest issue of Bon Appétit and get cooking. Be sure to send your comments and photos

Bon Appétit celebrates the world of great food and the pleasure of sharing it with others. Every issue invites readers into a hands-on experience, engaging them in all aspects of the epicurean lifestyle—cooking, dining, travel, entertaining, shopping and design. For more information please visit

First Year Anniversary Book Giveaway!

Today is the one year anniversary of my blog, CookThatBook!

To think that a full 365 days have passed since I first (nervously!) launched this website seems impossible. As the old adage says; how quickly time flies when you’re having fun. When I reflect upon the past year I am incredibly thankful for all of the wonderful people I’ve met, the new foodie friends I’ve made, and the numerous culinary experiences I have enjoyed along the way.

In celebration of CookThatBook’s one year anniversary, I will be giving away a copy of Dorie Greenspan’s “Around My French Table” to one lucky reader! To enter for a chance to win, post a comment below telling me about your favourite cookbook of all time. On October 31st one name will be drawn randomly from the list of comments. A huge thank you to the folks over at Thomas Allen & Son, Ltd. for donating a copy of the book for our giveaway!

I initially began this website because of  my out of control cookbook collection! With two small children at home I found myself searching for a project that went beyond my roles as wife and mother – something just for me. One night I found myself staring at my cookbooks, thinking about how the majority of my obsession had never been used. It was at that point I decided to create a food blog as a means of actually doing something with my cookbooks besides simply collecting them. They needed a purpose in life! As a result, I came up with the idea of starting a blog dedicated entirely to the review of cookbooks. One by one I would make my way through the stacks of books taking over my house, testing three recipes from each book, recording the results and providing an overall review to share with others.

So a year after launching my site has my cookbook collection decreased in size? Absolutely not! I doubt it ever will.

A heartfelt thank you to my loyal readers, all of the celebrity chefs I have interviewed, and the publishing houses who have been so wonderful in feeding my cookbook addiction by sending review copies.


In Search Of Pakoras

Always perfectly seasoned and served with an addictive homemade tamarind sauce and mint chutney, Rasoi Fine Indian Cuisine is my favourite place to indulge in these delicious fried fritters.

The Source Newspaper (October 12)

Past articles are now available online

In Search Of Turkey

Just because Thanksgiving has come and gone – at least for us Canadians – doesn’t mean you need to forget about turkey. Turkey is no longer considered a special occasion meat reserved for one or two times a year. In fact, turkey is one of the healthiest meats you can buy, with ground turkey being 2% leaner than skinless chicken breasts. The secret to replacing turkey in your recipe repertoire for dishes like tacos, chili and meatloaf? Add spices to the raw meat instead of during the cooking process. This will ensure the meat takes on the flavour of the spices rather than just taste like turkey.

Read my recent article on The Turkey House & Deli:

The Source Newspaper (October 5)

Past articles are now available online

The Roasted Turkey Sandwich is The Turkey House & Deli's number one selling sandwich: Full of stuffing, white and dark meat, cranberry sauce, lettuce and tomato - yum!

Bon Appétit Magazine: September Cover Recipe

Triple-Beef Cheeseburgers with Spiced Ketchup & Red Vinegar Pickles

Rating: 3 out of 5 (pretty tasty overall, waaaaaay too much work!)

Initial Thoughts:
Oh it’s on Bon Appétit – bring it baby! As I browsed through this month’s cover recipes (emphasis on the plural) I could picture the magazine executives chuckling amongst themselves as they planned revenge on all of us cheeky little food bloggers who dare to make each cover and pretend like we know it all. Their retribution? A cover that not only features the world’s most complex burger patty, but also involves making burger buns from scratch, homemade pickles, doctored ketchup and a coleslaw side. Fasten your seatbelts folks; this is going to be a bumpy ride…

The Test:
I have no problem admitting that I avoided making this recipe for as long as possible. Fear was the main motivator behind my procrastination. Can you blame me?! I was completely intimidated! This burger is the invention of Cambridge (MA) restaurant Craigie on Main chef-owner Tony Maws, and took him six months to develop. Served with a spiced ketchup, vinegary pickles and a homemade sesame bun, this burger has become one of the restaurant’s most popular dishes.

In the magazine intro to the recipe, Bon Appetite says “we predict it will be a hit at your house too.” I’m not so certain. But despite my misgivings I am a Capricorn so if I’ve committed to making every single cover recipe this year than by golly that’s what I’m going to do!

Luckily for me I have the world’s best butcher who got me all of the ingredients I needed to make the burger patty. This included beef brisket, short ribs, skirt steak, beef suet and beef bone marrow. Yes you read correctly; suet and bone marrow. Unfortunately there was some miscommunication as I thought my butcher was going to grind everything for me, but when I arrived home with my prized package I quickly realized that I was going to have to grind it myself. Great. Just after I finished writing a post about Mr. Spock wanting a meat grinder and how creepy I thought the whole idea. Is it too late to change my mind honey? Can I fully support your creepiness now that I have a pile of various cuts of meat and bone to deal with? Come to think of it…did you call the butcher and tell him not to grind the meat?! Is this all part of your ploy to gain a grinder of your own?!

Moving on…

The Results:
The beef patty itself was pretty good; nice and rich and very steak like in taste. Was it worth all of the effort and expense of using all of those different cuts? For the average home cook I would have to say…don’t bother. Yes it’s good but definitely not worth the effort (not to mention the cost of ingredients!) If you happen to have access to a commercial kitchen then it might be worth pursuing this recipe.

The ketchup had a nice kick, the celery root slaw was a nice departure from the usual cabbage concoction, and the pickles were phenomenal (will definitely be making these again). But the buns were a flop and completely inedible. In the words of my four year-old: “Mommy, do we have any real buns?” You bet we do sweetie. You bet.

(For a copy of September’s recipe, please click here)

As part of my culinary new years resolutions, I have committed to creating each month’s cover recipe from Bon Appétit Magazine. Inspired by a New York restaurant owner who has been making the magazine’s cover recipes each month for the last 25 years, I decided to attempt to do the same while blogging about my monthly experiences along the way.

NOTE: If any of you would like to follow along with me and join in on the fun, I’d love to compare notes! So pick-up a copy of the latest issue of Bon Appétit and get cooking. Be sure to send your comments and photos to

Bon Appétit celebrates the world of great food and the pleasure of sharing it with others. Every issue invites readers into a hands-on experience, engaging them in all aspects of the epicurean lifestyle—cooking, dining, travel, entertaining, shopping and design. For more information please visit

Foodbuzz Challenge #4: Picture Perfect


This week I received a review copy of culinary legend Dorie Greenspan’s new cookbook release, Around My French Table. As soon as I spied the front cover I began to drool, and knew immediately that should I make it to round four of Project Food Blog that this would be the recipe I would choose for my post. Tasked with documenting (through photos) a recipe that instructs readers in a step-by-step format, I wanted to create something that was visually interesting and made people want to leap into their kitchens and make it for themselves. I’m happy to say that I did advance to round four (thanks for all the support!), and that I did make the cover recipe from Dorie Greenspan’s book. Only thing left is to find out if my post is inspiring enough to have you try the recipe!

The recipe pictured on the cover was for chicken in a pot (click here for the recipe). The whole concept of cooking a chicken in a casserole dish sealed tight with a flour and water dough mixture placed around the edges of a Dutch oven, was a technique I had never seen before let alone attempted. I was intrigued!

First order of business – preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

While oven is preheating, peel half of a preserved lemon. This proved to be embarrassingly challenging and in the end I had to resort to brute force in order to pop the lemon out of the jar. NOTE: a preserved lemon (or citrons confits) is a Moroccan and Middle Eastern specialty, and involves making deep slits into lemons which are subsequently marinated in a brine of salt and lemon juice for a minimum of three weeks.

Chop the lemon rind into small pieces. Next, bring water and sugar mixture to a boil and add the lemon peel. Cook for 1 minute; drain and set aside.

Okay now it’s time to prep all that veg!

This includes chopping celery into 1 inch pieces…

…separating (but not peeling) 4 heads of garlic…

…and peeling 16 mini white onions. Yes – peeling those lil’ itty bitty onions are just as much of a pain as it looks! But they are definitely worth the effort as they become lovely and caramelized and just pop in your mouth.

Next, peel and slice carrots and yams into equal sized chunks, approximately 2 inches.

Whew – veggies are prepped and ready to go!

Sauté vegetables in Dutch oven over high heat until starting to brown. I found it useful to do this in two batches which was more time consuming but ensured all veggies browned nicely.

Remove vegetables from the heat and stir in herbs and reserved lemon peel.

Heat a skillet over high heat and add the chicken, browning on all sides and seasoning with salt and pepper as it cooks. I used a pair of tongs to turn the chicken which worked quite well.

Nestle the browned chicken in the Dutch oven, surrounding it with the vegetables. Mix together the chicken broth, white wine and olive oil mixture and pour over the chicken and veggies. Set aside.

Mix the flour and hot water to make a pliable dough.

Using your hands, roll the dough on flour dusted surface into a rope that is long enough to go around the entire rim of the Dutch oven. If the dough breaks, simple press back together.

Press lid into dough to seal the pot. Place in the oven and bake for 55 minutes. NOTE: being sceptical that a chicken this large (4 lbs) could cook in such a short period of time, I left it for longer and the chicken turned out to be overdone. Luckily the sealed pot technique kept the meat moist, but the bottom line here folks is to trust Dorie. She knows what she’s talking about!

Okay at this point it is important to do three things:

First, arrange for take-out food for the kids because earlier in the day you decided to take them to the pumpkin patch and didn’t get home till much later than planned and apparently an hour is just too long for them to wait.

Next, clean up the disaster in the kitchen. If you have no mess to clean up because you are one of those people who are always annoyingly vigilant about cleaning up as you go, kindly keep this information to yourself.

Now take the remainder of the white wine and pour yourself a nice big glass. It’s well deserved!

And finally, be sure to take a moment to put your feet up and relax. Gotta love recipes that allow for some downtime!

Once the chicken is done, Dorie recommends using a screwdriver to help pry the lid free. However, I found the lid lifted easily on its own. Be careful not to get burnt by the steam when breaking the seal, and be prepared for intoxicating smells to waft through your kitchen. No need to sound the dinner bell…they will all come running to the table!

We carved the chicken in the kitchen and brought the pot of vegetables to the table, sopping up the delicious sauce with chunks of fresh bread.

This meal is the epitome of comfort food. The simple flavours let the ingredients speak for themselves, the casual nature of the meal allowing guests to connect with their food in a true spirit of togetherness and camaraderie.

Simple. Tasty. Perfect.

In celebration of CookThatBook’s one year anniversary, next week I will be giving away a copy of Dorie Greenspan’s “Around My French Table” to one lucky reader! Stay tuned for more details. Book courtesy of Thomas Allen & Son, Ltd.

Follow Project Food Blog for contest updates and to find out who will be the next Food Blog Star! Voting for the fourth round is from October 11-14. (NOTE: you will need to create a Foodbuzz profile in order to vote. This just takes a minute so please don’t be deterred!)

Interview – Gale Gand

Gale Gand is a nationally acclaimed pastry chef, James Beard Award winner, Food Network star, successful restaurateur, and celebrated cookbook author. Some things you may not know about Gale? She has a degree in silver and goldsmithing, and owns a root beer company!

Based in Chicago (IL), Gale Gand has seven cookbooks to her name including her most recent release – Gale Gand’s Brunch!: 100 Fantastic Recipes for the Weekend’s Best Meal. The down-to-earth approach she takes in regards to recipes endears her cookbooks to home cooks, who love how she demystifies the secrets behind successful cooking and baking.

Gale Gand is a firm believer in sustainable agriculture and eating locally, and is an active member in several community organizations including Chicago’s Green City Market, Art Smith’s foundation, and Common Threads. As if this isn’t enough to keep her busy she also has three children including a 13 year-old son and 5 year-old twin girls.

While visiting Chicago I got an opportunity to dine at the world renowned restaurant Tru (owned by Gale Gand, Rick Tramonto & Rich Melman), and was thrilled when Gale managed to find time in her busy schedule to chat with me about her latest cookbook.

To read my interview with Gale Gand, please click here.

To read my review of Gale Gand’s Brunch! please click here.

For a copy of the recipe for Gale Gand’s Almond Ciabatta French Toast, please click here.

Foodbuzz Challenge #3: Luxury Dinner Party


Dear Martha,

I’m sorry you were unable to join us for dinner this past weekend. We even set a place for you at the table in case you managed to show up last minute. Not to rub it in or anything, but boy did you miss out!

Recognize the place card?! We downloaded one of the clever little templates you have up on your website!

The theme for the night was Greek. When devising the night’s menu I wanted to ensure that people were not thrown entirely out of their culinary comfort zone, but that they were still given an opportunity to experience some unfamiliar flavours and dishes. This is partially the reason why I opted for Greek cuisine, as most people have tried at least some aspect of this type of food yet it still left me with room to expand the scope of dishes served and include some lesser known items.

Here’s what was on our menu for the evening:

To start the night off with a bang; saaaaannnnngriiiaaaaa! Everyone brought a bottle of red wine to go into the communal sangria bowl, which was a fun way for people to contribute to the festivities. (For a copy of Mr. Spock’s Winter Sangria, click here).

To be honest, the beginning of a meal is my favourite part and sets the tone for the evening. I try to include food that is not fussy, tastes delicious and needs to be eaten with your hands. I remember reading in one of your magazine issues that starting off the night with finger food is a good way to have people really connect with their food. Couldn’t agree more!

There was a nice variety of appetizers, including Roasted Feta with Olives & Red Peppers, Garides Saganaki (shrimp with tomatoes & feta), Dolmades (stuffed grape leaves), Spanakopita & Tzatziki (Traditional Greek Spinach & Feta Cheese Pie), along with an assortment of crackers, grilled pita & Greek olives. (NOTE: to view individual recipes please click on each dish).

Dolmades were the one thing I was unsure about, yet they ended up being the most beloved item of the night. These little guys had so much life compared to the slimy, tasteless deli prepared offerings we’ve had in the past! Have you ever made Dolmades? Perhaps we could swap recipes some time…

The whole idea of connecting with the food was continued by adopting a casual, family-style approach of dinning. Just because you’re throwing a luxury dinner party doesn’t mean you need to necessarily eat in an overly stuffy manner with the correct fork at the correct time. It is important to me that my guests feel relaxed and have an opportunity to take pleasure in the food!

So what did we serve as the main? You’ll kick yourself for not making more of an effort to join us when you hear that Mr. Spock served up a glorious – and you know I don’t use that word lightly when referring to food – Rotisserie Oregano-Crusted Leg of Lamb (click here for the recipe). It was absolutely heavenly, roasted to perfection and full of flavour. He chose to use a bone-in leg of lamb, which he deboned and marinated overnight. The next afternoon my handy hubby trussed the meat back around the bone and slow cooked it on the rotisserie. To go with the lamb I served Roasted Greek Potatoes and a Greek Salad, both of which were incredibly tasty (click here for the recipes).

To finish the meal we enjoyed a delicious Mediterranean Almond Cake served with Amaretto Cream, a nice dessert which was not overly sweet. The best part? Leftover cake which we devoured for breakfast the next day!

As the ‘queen of entertaining’ I’m sure you have an infinite number of hosting tips, but here’s a list of the things that I found useful while executing my dinner party:

  • Wear comfy shoes – never ever underestimate the crippling power of uncomfortable shoes. Footwear can make or break your evening as a host!
  • Prep! Prep! Prep! I tried to make as much food as possible ahead of time so I wouldn’t be stuck slaving away at the stove all night. Your guests are here to socialize with you and should not have to endure your absence while you toil away out of sight, nor should they have to smell the results of all that toiling! (NOTE: The night before the party Mr. Spock marinated the lamb while I made the Spanakopita and Mediterranean Almond Cake. The next morning was dedicated to making the Dolmades and prepping the shrimp for the Garides Saganaki, leaving as little food prep as possible for after the guests arrived).
  • Don’t be afraid to delegate. Okay so this is something that my inner control freak always struggles with, but in the end I realize that as much as I might think I have superpowers I am not a culinary immortal like you. Most guests are keen to help!
  • Wear an apron and avoid browning potatoes in hot oil while sporting a new silk dress. I had to learn this tip the hard way.
  • Clean up as you go. This is how I stay sane during the unavoidable craze of cooking a large meal.
  • If you are limited on kitchen space try and use a BBQ or rotisserie in order to free up as much oven space as possible. Another option is to convince your gracious in-laws to let you throw your dinner party at their house!

Anyways my dear friend, this letter ended up being much longer than I had originally anticipated. Everyone sends their love and wishes you had been able to partake in the weekend’s festivities.

Hope to catch up with you soon!

Follow Project Food Blog for contest updates and to find out who will be the next Food Blog Star! Voting for the third round is from October 4-7. (NOTE: you will need to create a Foodbuzz profile in order to vote. This just takes a minute so please don’t be deterred!)