Red Lentil Pasta Salad

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Memorial Day is just a couple of weeks away, which means BBQ season is in full swing.  One of the most popular sides at a BBQ are those delicious pasta salads.  The ideas of what to create for a pasta salad are endless.  I personally love adding fresh herbs to mine.  It makes for added freshness and taste.  To this salad I wanted to have a healthier choice on the pasta, so I found a red lentil gluten free penne pasta.  The combination of this salad is one that will make your guests keep coming back for more.  Make it in the spur of the moment or ahead of time.

Ingredients salad;

12 oz red lentil penne
10 cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 cup pearl mozzarella balls
Salt & pepper, to taste
12 slices salami, chopped
1/2 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
14 oz can hearts of palm, chopped


Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Make sure to season the water with plenty of salt.  Follow the cooking instructions on the packaging.  Cook until AL DENTE about 10 minutes with this pasta.  Drain and cool off.

Place all the ingredients in a large bowl and set aside.

Ingredients dressing:

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup lemon juice
Salt & pepper, to taste
8 pieces basil
2 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard


In a food processor add all of the ingredients.  Process until well combined.  Pour over salad.  Toss everything together and serve.

Check out the other great dishes from this week’s Food Network Blog #SensationalSides below

Feed Me Phoebe: Spicy Shrimp Pasta Salad with Asparagus and Sundried Tomatoes
The Lemon Bowl: Roasted Garlic Vegetable Pasta
TasteBook: Quick & Easy BLT Pasta Salad
Dishin & Dishes: Asian Noodle Salad
Weelicious: Summer Succotash Pasta Salad
Homemade Delish: Red Lentil Pasta Salad
The Mom 100: Pasta Salad and Salmon with Ramp Dressing
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Spring Pasta Salad With Sundried Tomatoes, Broccoli & Spinach
Taste with the Eyes: Lemon Ricotta Pasta Salad with Figs and Mint
FN Dish: Picnic Pasta Salad Season Is Here

Cheesy Zucchini and Summer Squash

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Let’s get cheesy with zucchini and summer squash. Tis the season for vegetables that keep on giving.  We plant zucchini, and it’s one of those vegetables that we end up with so much.  This recipe is a great side dish to any meat or poultry platter.  It gets even better when you add some Gruyere cheese, which in my opinion is the perfect cheese to add to anything baked.


2 summer squash, cubed
1 large zucchini, cubed
1 small onion, chopped
2 cups Gruyere cheese, shredded
1 cup seasoned Panko crumbs
2 tablespoons butter, melted
Salt & pepper, to taste
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons fresh oregano


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a large bowl add zucchini, summer squash, 1 cup of cheese, onions, oregano and salt and pepper. Toss everything. Place on to a baking dish. Top with remaining cup of cheese. In a small bowl mix melted butter with Panko crumbs. Crumble on top. Place in the oven and bake for 35 minutes or until golden brown crust has formed.

Check out the other great dishes from this week’s Food Network Blog #SensationalSides below

The Lemon Bowl: Spelt Salad with Apples, Cheddar and Scallions
Jeanette’s Healthy Living: Loaded Mashed Cauliflower Casserole with Bacon and Caramelized Onions {Low Carb}
Creative Culinary: Cilantro Serrano Rice
Virtually Homemade: Stove Top Mac and Cheese with Apples and Bacon
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Mary Lane’s Pasta With Pesto Tomato Sauce
Red or Green: Cheesy Polenta with Spicy Leeks
The Wimpy Vegetarian: Cheesy Beer Bread with Quinoa, Millet and Jalapeño Peppers
Homemade Delish: Cheesy Zucchini and Summer Squash
Daisy at Home: Bell Pepper Pizza
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Indian Cottage Cheese & Bell Pepper Quick Stir-Fry
Weelicious: Cheesy Turkey Meatballs
Swing Eats: Frico: Parmesan Cheese Crackers (gluten-free)
The Mom 100: Leek, Mushroom and Goat Cheese Quiche
FN Dish: 6 Ways to One-Up Side Dish Favorites with Cheese

Chile Rellenos

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Everyone in my house is a big fan of Mexican food. In fact my daughter could eat tacos every night if we would let her. But Mexican food isn’t just about tacos and quesadillas.  There are so many different dishes that people should try. Chile rellenos is one of them. The poblano is a mild chile pepper with delicious flavor when charred.  It’s traditionally stuffed with cheese but you can get creative and stuff it with whatever you may like.  It’s a super easy dish for any night of the week.  Give this a try and I promise you will fall in love.


4 poblano chile peppers
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 jar Goya sofrito sauce
1 cup shredded aged cheddar cheese
1/2 shredded Monterey Jack cheese
2 large egg whites, plus 2 egg yolks, room temperate
1 tablespoon water
Vegetable oil, for frying
All purpose flour, for dredging


Char poblano chiles on top of the stove top or in broiler until blackened all around. Remove and place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrapper for 10 minutes (this will help with softening the peppers and easy to peel).

Do not rinse the peppers after removing skin. Using a knife make a slit on the side of the pepper length wise. Remove seeds and inner membrane. Repeat step with each pepper. Next add both cheeses to all of the peppers about 1/4 cup to each. Season with salt and pepper.  Take a tooth pick and close the pepper making an X. This is to secure the filling so it doesn’t leak out while frying. Dredge the poblanos in flour and set aside.

In a large bowl beat the egg whites and water with a pinch of salt until soft peaks. Next add the egg yolks and gently stir them into the egg whites. Batter is ready.

Heat about 1 1/2 inches of vegetable oil in a deep large skillet over medium to high heat.

Holding each chile by the stem gently dip them into the batter and place them in the skillet. Fry each side for about 2 minutes until golden brown. Place on to paper towel to drain.

Mean while add the sofrito to a pot and heat. Once heated add to a shallow bowl. Top with poblano chile and source cream. Serve immediate and enjoy.

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Peas that Please

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Peas are not in a lot of people’s forte.  It just seems very plain with nothing too crazy about it;  So people tend to keep passing it on at the table.  I think with this recipe you will want to give it a try; not once, but twice.  These peas are perfect for any special occasion especially a BBQ.


1 large onion, sliced
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
Pinch of sugar
3 cups frozen peas
1/4 cup scallions, chopped
1/4 cup crushed almonds, optional
1/2 cup goat cheese
1 teaspoon thyme


In a large skillet on medium to medium low heat add butter and olive oil.  Next add sliced onions.  Stir until well coated with butter and oil.  Add salt, pepper and thyme.  Spread the onions out nice and evenly, and cook.  Stir occasionally.  After about 5 minutes add the pinch of sugar.  Cook for another 10 minutes or so until nicely caramelized.

Now add the peas to the skillet with the caramelized onions.  Stir until everything is well incorporated.  Cook for about 3 minutes.  Next add 1/4 cup of the goat cheese.  Stir until melted.  Place on to a serving dish and top with scallions, almonds and remaining goat cheese. Enjoy!

Check out the other great dishes from this week’s Food Network Blog #SensationalSides below

Creative Culinary: Peas with Bacon and Crispy Leeks
Daisy at Home: No-Cook Spring Succotash
Weelicious: Summer Pea Salad
Virtually Homemade: Green Pea Hummus
Homemade Delish: Peas That Please
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Marinated Peas & Peppers Salad
Red or Green: English Pea Mash on Garlic Rubbed Bruschetta
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Cauliflower and Peas Stir-Fry
Taste with the Eyes: Pasta with Peas, Bacon, Mint, and Ricotta
The Mom 100: Spring Ramp and Pea Risotto
Dishin & Dishes: Sesame Sugar Snap Peas
FN Dish: The Freshest Ways to Pass the Peas, Please

Taste of the Nation Philadelphia


Its back one of my all time favorite events in Philadelphia. Actually one of the 1st that I attended as Homemade Delish. An amazing night for all foodie lovers for a great cause.

Premier tasting event, which supports No Kid Hungry’s work to end childhood hunger in America, will feature Philadelphia’s top chefs and mixologists united for a cause: making sure all children in this country get the healthy food they need.

Guests will have the opportunity to taste dishes and cocktails from 50 of the city’s most influential people in the food and drink scene. They’ll also enjoy live entertainment and a historically competitive silent auction.

Debuting for the first-time this year, the Chefs Behind Bars happy hour series is an additional promotional fundraiser leading up to the main event. Philly’s top chefs trade in their aprons for cocktail shakers. For a flat $15 donation {100% proceeds go directly to the No Kid Hungry Foundation} guests will get to mingle with top chefs and enjoy a special complementary cocktail. The first Chefs Behind Bars happy hour was hosted by Charlie was a Sinner and included Chef Ted Manko and Top-Chef winner, Jen Carroll.

The final Chefs Behind Bars happy hour will be hosted on Monday, April 27 at Jerry’s Bar in Northern Liberties from 5-8pm. Tickets for Taste of the Nation will be available for purchase at the door at a discounted price.

2015 Restaurant Lineup:

Aldine, The Avenue Deli, Bank & Bourbon, Barbuzzo, Barren Hill Tavern & Brewery, Bing Bing Dim Sum, Bistrot La Minette, Blue Duck Sandwich Co., Bru, Buddakan, Capofitto, Charlie was a sinner., Creekstone Farms, Elements, The Farm and Fisherman, Fond, Fork, The Good King Tavern, Grand Lux Café, Helm, Jerry’s Bar, Kensington Quarters, Lacroix at the Rittenhouse, Lo Spiedo, Mercato, Nectar, Opa, Petruce et al., Pod, Pub & Kitchen P’unk Burger R2L Red Owl Tavern Russet Shake Shack Square 1682 Taproom on 19th Townsend, V Street, Vernick Food & Drink, Will BYOB, and Zeppoli

2015 Mixologist Lineup:
1 Tippling,, Brick & Mortar, The Good King Tavern, Olde Bar, Vedge, and Vesper

For more information and to purchase tickets visit:

“Philadelphia’s Taste of the Nation is more than just an chance to eat and drink—though that part is pretty great,” said Linda Huss, co-chair of the event. “It’s the opportunity to give baPhiladelphia’s Taste of the Nation® for No Kid Hungry returns Sunday, May 3 to the Loews Philadelphia Hotel with an additional first-ever, Chef Behind Bars Happy Hour series, concluding at Jerry’s Bar on Monday, April 27. Theck and connect children in need to healthy meals. It’s a fantastic night out for a deserving cause.”

Kerrygold Grilled Cheese

Grilled cheese is such a classic sandwich.  Many people have created different versions using different cheeses and breads.  I don’t think I have ever met someone who didn’t like a good homemade grilled cheese.  It reminds me of childhood and enjoying it with a cup of tomato soup for dipping.

A good cheese and bread are obviously important for making it the best; so I partnered up with Kerrygold Cheese ,one of my favorite brands, to create these 2 delicious grilled cheese sandwiches just for you.  The first one is a jalapeño and bacon grilled cheese using Kerrygold Blarney cheese and the classic Kerrygold Dubliner, but it’s also an inside and out grilled cheese.  The second I made a doughnut grilled cheese with fig jam, which I used Kerrygold Dubliner.  I hope you enjoy these little creations.

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Jalapeño bacon grilled cheese

1/2 cup shredded Kerrygold Dubliner
1/2 cup shredded Kerrygold Blarney
2 tablespoons Kerrygold salted butter
1/4 cup jarred jalapeños slices
2 slices whole wheat Panini bread
2-3 slices of bacon


Take bread slices and butter both slices. Next add the cheese to the top of the butter. Now add more cheese to the non buttered/cheese side. Close and on medium skillet on medium to high heat. Press the bread slightly. Cook until golden brown about 3-5 minutes on each side.

Serve with soup, salad or on its own.

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Doughnut and fig jam grilled cheese

1/4 cup Kerrygold Dubliner cheese
1 tablespoon fig jam
1 old fashion doughnut, cut in half
1 tablespoon Kerrygold salted butter


Cut doughnut in half and spread butter on to both sides. Now spread jam and cheese.

Take doughnut and add to skillet on medium to high heat. Slightly press down on doughnut. Cook until golden  brown 3-5 minutes.  Enjoy!

Grilled Pineapple spinach salad

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I’m excited to be part of the Food Network dish series called “Sensational Sides.”  In this post I wanted to share a delicious green salad with grilled pineapple.  Adding fruits to the salad gives it that extra delicious flavor.  This is great as a side or for a main course.  Try grilling different fruits and adding it to your salad on occasion; you may be surprised at the flavors.

I wanted a tropical feel to this salad so I made a coconut dressing.  All of the flavors compliment each other perfectly.


8 ounces baby spinach
1/2 red onion, sliced finely
1/4 cup mint, chopped
1/4 cup crumbled bacon
1 avocado, chopped
1 pineapples, peeled, cored and sliced
1/4 cup Coconut oil, melted

Dressing recipe:
1/4 cup pineapple juice
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt & pepper
1/4 cup raw agave

Prepare grill or grill pan. Brush pineapple slices with coconut oil. Lay pineapple on grill. Cook for about 3 minutes until golden.

In a small bowl whisk all the dressing ingredients and set aside.

In a large bowl add spinach, onions, avocado, mint and bacon. Add the dressing and toss everything together. Top with grilled pineapples.

Check out the other great dishes from this week’s Food Network #SensationalSides below
Creative Culinary: Mixed Greens with Smoked Mozzarella and a Warm Roasted Garlic Dressing
The Cultural Dish: Three Quick and Easy Salad Recipes
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Salad Greens with Sun Dried Tomato Vinaigrette
Red or Green: Salad Greens with Basic Balsamic Vinaigrette
The Heritage Cook: Chopped Steakhouse-Style Salad (Gluten-Free)
Weelicious: Southwestern Salad
Taste with the Eyes: Teacher Appreciation Farmers Market Salad
Swing Eats: Kale Salad with Lemon, Pecorino Romano, and Toasted Walnuts
Virtually Homemade: Spinach and Bacon Salad
Domesticate Me: 8 Gorgeous Green Salads for Spring
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Arugula and Grapefruit Salad
Dishin & Dishes: Tangle Thai Rainbow Salad
Homemade Delish: Grilled Pineapple Spinach Salad
FN Dish: Why Side Salads Are the Best Salads

Citrus Chicken

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Chicken as we all know is one the easiest meats with which to cook. It is just so versatile. Lately I have been on a citrus kick, I guess I’m just loving the warmer weather. This recipe was simple and my family loved. Pairs well with some salad and a glass of Riesling. Enjoy

1 1/4 lbs of chicken breast
1 orange, sliced
1 lemon, sliced
3 garlic cloves, minced
Salt & Pepper
1 tablespoon of fresh thyme
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Season chicken with salt & pepper, drizzle olive oil over chicken and add garlic. Toss together. Take chicken and lay onto baking dish. Sprinkle thyme over chicken and lay slices of oranges and lemons on top of chicken.

Bake in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes.

Homemade Garlic Bread


Being that my father is a baker, we always had bread around the house growing up.  One of the things he would make would be homemade garlic bread.  Everyone knows this pairs up great with a pasta dish and a glass of vino.  This recipe is simple and the fresh herbs really stand out.  Once you try this you will never want frozen garlic bread again.  Enjoy!

1/3 cup fresh parsley
1/3 cup fresh basil
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
4-5 large garlic cloves
Salt & pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons butter
1 french baguette, cut in half


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a food processor pulse garlic, parsley, basil and s&p; until you get fine little crumbs.  Set aside

Now in a small skillet on medium to high heat add olive oil.  Next add your fresh herb mix.  Cook for about a minute, you don’t want garlic to burn.

Take the bread and cut in half.  Place on top of a baking sheet.  Smear the butter on the slices.  Next take your olive oil and herb mix and smear it on top of the butter.

Turn your oven now to broiler.  Add the bread.  Should take 5-6 minutes until bread is toasted and golden brown.

Rittenhouse Row Spring Preview Party


Excited to be attending and judging some cocktails at The Rittenhouse Row 2015 Spring Festival Preview Party on April 16th, featuring cuisine from Rittenhouse Row’s best restaurants, cocktails from their best bartenders and a silent auction with Rittenhouse Row experiences and merchandise

Participating bars and restaurants include: 1925 Cocktail Lounge, a. Bar, a. Kitchen, Ben & Jerry’s, Butcher and Singer, The Continental Mid-town, The Dandelion, D’Angelo’s Ristorante Italiano and Lounge, Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse, Devon Seafood Grill, The Foodery at Rittenhouse, Lacroix, Ladder 15, Library Bar, Marathon Grill, Melograno, Parc, Qdoba, Ranstead Room, Rouge, Sbraga, Termini Bros. Bakery, Volver, Zama and more.

Proceeds from the event will benefit Rittenhouse Row, a non-profit organization devoted to promoting the Rittenhouse Square neighborhood (bold) The Rittenhouse Row Spring Festival Presented by Capital One will be held on Saturday, May 2 from noon to 5 pm rain or shine. Held on Walnut Street from Broad to 19th, the annual event showcases Philadelphia’s finest fashions, cuisine and entertainment and attracts more than 50,000 people to enjoy the best of Rittenhouse Row. For more information and to purchase tickets visit Hope to see you there.