Guys, if you have never cooked or worked with vanilla beans, you are in for a treat!
So easy, and such out-of-this-world fresh vanilla flavor!
I buy my vanilla beans at Costco - two tubes (5 beans in each) run about $15.00 - the price is so much better than anywhere else, and the quality is top shelf as well!
Snow after snowy day, temps so cold that it is hard to get out of our warm beds in the morning! I'm sure Spring and glorious summer will eventually get here - we're dreaming about being out on Lake Erie on a sun-filled day with blue skies and blue waves, but until then, time to cook up a little comfort food!
I started by whipping up three batches of our favorite Banana Bread and Chocolate Banana Bread. We love to make these as individual miniature cakes - so moist and filled with wonderful banana flavor. For a little something extra, I like to glaze the top of my banana bread with some slow moving maple syrup when I take it out of the oven - it keeps each little loaf sealed and moist for days - if they ever lasted that long! For supper Grandpa's favorite Meatloaf recipe, together with some Cheesy Company Hash Browns are exactly what we need today!
What a wonderful Valentine's weekend we had! President's Day holiday made for a long and relaxing weekend, with lots of time to cook and bake my favorite Valentine treats for the ones I love!
Katie helped with the Salmon with Champagne & Raspberries (one of our favorites from Gunflint Lodge) and Fresh Asparagus; Kelsey and Aiden helped with the Valentine Cupcakes, Melissa learned to make her first Texas Sheet Cake. Emily and Adam were on hand to help with the Valentine Brownies. Is there a better way to celebrate than with champagne, chocolate and raspberries? Good thing that I bought four pints of fresh beautiful raspberries - our grandbabies gobbled up every berry we didn't cook with!
Aiden was so excited to celebrate his first Valentine's Day party, working so hard to write his name and put together valentine treats for all of his three-year-old friends.
It was so nice to have long days to relax, cook and snap some photos. It snowed every day this weekend - beautiful, fluffy, shiny snowflakes that tumbled from the sky. And in the mornings, some warm and wonderful Cinnamon Crumb Coffee Cake and coffee. We had relaxing family dinners every night and shared lots of memories, laughter and love - a perfect Valentine celebration. Hope you love our favorites as much as we did!
Don't you love discovering new food products for Valentine's Day? I was so excited when I found these heart-shaped four cheese ravioli at our local Costco store - a beautiful combination of deep red and fluffy white valentine pillows!
The kids always get a kick out of fun-shaped ravioli and macaroni products - it's fun to find something new to surprise them with!
So simply to make as well - I whipped up a batch of fresh sun-dried tomato and basil cream sauce, sprinkled with some fresh grated Parmesan cheese and some ribbons of fresh basil - you will love how fragrant, fresh and flavorful this dish is.
The tangy bite of sun-dried tomatoes and fresh basil adds a ton of fresh flavor to this dish - I just wish I could get my hands on some garden fresh roma tomatoes. As pretty as the forced varieties are this time of year, there is nothing that compares to ruby red tomatoes, vine-ripened and fresh from the garden!
Just got a new seed catalog in the mail today, so I'll be doing some day-dreaming about all of the wonderful things I want to plant in the garden this year. Are you looking forward to Spring as much as I am? Sunshine and warmth....hopefully headed our way soon!