Pasta Toppings – Caprese Combo

pasta caprese comboSummertime is here and time for fresh farm produce and good prices for fruits and vegetables in-season. I am always looking for a bargain and I take advantage of buying produce this time of year and doing more meal planning using fresh vegetables and herbs.

One dish I love to make and eat is a non-cooked tomato, mozzarella and basil topping for cooked pasta. It is based on a very popular appetizer called Caprese Salad. It is named for the island of Capri and is very popular all over Italy and increasingly so in the United States. This salad is a layering of sliced tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and fresh basil which is then drizzled with olive oil.

The Creative and Multi-Talented Christopher Lowell

christopher lowellWhen my web master insisted that I start blogging, I wasn’t sure what to write about.  He said write about what you know and the people who are meaningful to you. So, the first person who came to mind was my friend Christopher Lowell.  He’s a renowned designer who George and I had the pleasure of working with when he did a total makeover on our home some 15 years ago.

Christopher is one of the most talented individuals I have ever met – he can “do it all”.

Finicky Dog Advice

finicky dog adviceFreddie, my three and a half year old Maltese, is a very finicky eater and has been since he was a pup.  I have tried every enticement to get him to eat his dog food. I would cook chicken, beef, turkey, eggs, anything to add to his dog food to get him to eat and finish his food. He likes the Innova dog food I feed him, however, he would still look for morsels of homemade food. He never seemed to eat with enjoyment or complete the meal. plus if I added “people food” to his dish, he would selectively pick it out before he took a few bites of his dog food.

Jazzed Up Baked Beans

jazzed-up-baked-beansA quick and delicious side dish is my jazzed-up baked beans. It is so simple to prepare and it will taste as if you have been cooking this all day long. This is a perfect recipe to accompany any outdoor grilling you are doing, such as hamburgers, frankfurters, chicken, and my all time favorite Barbecue Beef Brisket.


(See my BBQ Brisket Recipe for a video of this recipe)

Serves: 6

  • 1 28-oz can baked beans (any variety)
  • 1 small onions coarsely chopped
  • 4 tbs ketchup
  • 2 tbs brown sugar

BBQ Brisket

bbq brisketWhile living in Texas for many years, I became a devout fan of barbecue. In Texas, barbecue is an art and everyone competes for the best barbecue sauce. I loved all that I tried and now when I visit Texas, I have to make a stop at some of my favorite barbecue restaurants.

I never could duplicate the recipes to my liking, mainly because of the amount of time it takes to slow cook on the barbecue grill to get the true essence of great tender, flavorful barbecue. Eventually I found an easy and very delicious method for making barbecue beef brisket. Brisket is a tough cut of meat and needs marinating and slow cooking in order to become tender.