Butternut Squash and Red Lentil Soup (Shorabit Jarjir)

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 This is an amazing soup.  Other than a little olive oil, the soup is made primarily with fresh vegetables and plenty of spice.  I was surprised that a soup this creamy was made without any milk, cream or butter.  The vegetables and red lentils are cooked until soft then pureed to create a lovely, thick, hearty and filling simple main course. Lentils are another one of those super foods . . . Continue Reading

Mini Applesauce Spice Cakes with Browned Butter Cinnamon Buttercream

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 When I was a young woman just starting out on my own, I'd often make Applesauce Spice Cake as my easy go-to dessert.  I baked it in a 13x9 inch pan and added a dollop of Cool Whip on top.  It was so soft and light and tasted of cinnamon and allspice.  Duncan Hines really does have a good cake mix!  But times have changed and now homemade is preferred over boxed or store bought.  Dessert . . . Continue Reading

Homemade Peanut Larabars

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I carry my lunch to work everyday.  We don't have many restaurants in the neighborhood because my office is out in the country.  Other than the Courthouse, Sheriff's office and County office buildings, there's not much else in the area.  We are surrounded by Civil War Battlefields and 2 lane roads.  It is simply rural America. That makes my drive to work - better than most.  Since we . . . Continue Reading

Pumpkin Doughnuts with Caramel Icing & Toasted Pecans

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Are you all pumpkin'd out yet?  I hope not because I'm just getting started!  I was playing with a 2 ingredient pumpkin ice cream - but it's hard as a rock.  Unfortunately it needs more fat and sugar - I guess I'll keep trying.  But the day is not a total loss because these pumpkin doughnuts are completely fantastic!  The base ingredients are adapted from a King Arthur Flour recipe. I . . . Continue Reading

Butternut Squash Risotto with Sugared Walnuts & a Giveaway! (WINNERS ANNOUNCED)

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Celebrating a blog-iversary may seem silly to some.  But after 4 years of raising this baby, I can tell you I'm all about being silly!  Blogs are a commitment that require an investment of time, resources, creativity and dedication.  Blogging can overpower all your free time if you let it but it can also be one of the most rewarding adventures you undertake.  You may learn a lot about . . . Continue Reading

Southern Shores, NC – The Outer Banks

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We spent a glorious week on the Outer Banks with family we don't see very often.  The time we had visiting, playing games, kayaking, laying by the pool and walking on the beach was precious.  We laughed and enjoyed catching up.  One of the great things about vacationing after the busy season is the deserted beaches and manageable traffic.  Once the little ones get older, school will come . . . Continue Reading

Kitty Hawk Maritime Woods Reserve

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For the last month or so we've been completely off our normal routine.  We went camping in the Shenandoah Mountains, spent weeks working on the blog while we transitioned to WordPress, and then went out of town for a week to the Outer Banks in North Carolina.  I'm really looking forward to settling in for the next six weeks trying some new recipes and blogging on my regular schedule. . . . Continue Reading

Apple Cinnamon Scones

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While Autumn weather is knocking at the front door, we're squeezing in one last bit of summer by spending a week at the beach with our children and other family members.  It's raining today, but I don't mind.  I'm on vacation and beach vacations are good for the soul.  We've taken naps, ate too much, kayaked in Currituck Sound and walked on the beach.  We have a pool and hot tub and lots . . . Continue Reading

Succotash

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I'm really getting into this 'meatless Monday' movement.  My husband asked if we could eat less animal protein and fill our work-week with mostly whole grains, vegetables and fruit.  I'm quite sure we're going to eat something sweet on the weekends and it will most likely include dairy.  But Monday through Friday we can try a little harder and commit to a mostly plant-based 'clean . . . Continue Reading

Pita & Spinach salad with dates and almonds

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The past two weeks have been interesting.  Not only has my life been very busy, I jumped into the deep end of the pool with no time to learn how to swim.  Getting back into the kitchen with a somewhat normal routine will be a welcome change!  For months I've anxiously waited for my turn to migrate over to WordPress.  I had the best team in the world providing all the tools needed to . . . Continue Reading