super simple turkey pot pie (and yes, I cheated)

turkey pot pie

WHEN YOU HAVE A FRIDGE FULL OF TURKEY and a house full of guests, the best way to handle both is a big casserole of turkey pot pie, just like this one. It’s a new riff on the Barefoot Contessa’s chicken pot pie recipe we made over once (and still the number one recipe of… 

Read More »

whole wheat dried apricot tarts (or jam tarts, or prune tarts, or…)

fruit tarts in the pan, foodlets

WHEN GRANDMA COMES TO TOWN, our kitchen goes into overdrive. Paul’s mom and dad were here for a visit over Thanksgiving and made one of Paul’s childhood favorites, apricot tarts. It’s an old recipe, the original could have, maybe come from a newspaper but this version has definitely been passed around church groups, through family… 

Read More »

one pot dinner: sauteed cabbage & chicken with dried cranberries & toasted almonds

cabbage and chicken

HERE’S THE PINT-SIZED REVIEW FOR THIS ONE: “I like it a little bit.” That would be Phoebe (4) when I served this cabbage dish for dinner the other night. Estelle (2) and George (1) were equally enthusiastic. And you know what? That works for me! A few bites here, a few bites there, and pretty… 

Read More »

it’s turkey time! our new favorite nut-free cheddar & cream cheese ball

turkey shaped cheese ball for kids

DID YOU KNOW MOST CHEESE BALLS INCLUDE NUTS? And all sorts of spicy ingredients? At least the recipes I found do. This was a problem because two forces aligned this week: it was our turn to take the preschool snack and my former Martha Stewart Omnimedia alum, Michelle Buffardi, has an adorable new book out… 

Read More »

maple roasted acorn squash

acorn squash

PHOEBE CALLED THIS “THE BEST IN THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD”. She is also four and when two-year-old Estelle doesn’t share stickers, markers or whatever the hot commodity of the day is, Phoebe declares the incident “the worst in the whole wide world”. The whole wide world is mentioned a lot these days, so take the… 

Read More »

maple syrup sweet potato whoopie pies

sweet potato whoopie pies

IT’S ON. Fall is here and things are so pretty in our corner of North Carolina that I don’t miss Rome one bit. Except for maybe the food. And the amazing architecture. And the 1 euro cappucini on every corner. And the general public’s unabashed love for children. Except for that stuff. But here’s something… 

Read More »

spicy pasta with chicken, spinach and goat cheese

chicken, butternut squash pasta

I’M BREAKING A PRETTY BIG RULE HERE. The idea of making two meals, one for the kids and another for the adults, is just too exhausting for me to even consider on most days. But for our Halloween lunch, I decided to spare the moms those mummy turkey dogs. Instead we adapted a recipe from… 

Read More »

easy penne pasta with cauliflower, sausage & parmesan cheese

cauliflower penne pasta with sausage

IT’S NOT ALWAYS EASY TO GET KIDS EATING veggies. Especially those with a funny smell when you cook ‘em. That’s right cauliflower, we’re talking about you. The good news is, we’ve discovered three ways to make cauliflower an easy sell at dinner. Roasted cauliflower, baked into macaroni and cheese, and this way right here. I… 

Read More »

when all else fails, make baby food: roasted sweet potato and apple baby food

roasted sweet potato and apple baby food

“IT’S NOT GOING WELL”, says my tired old self. “Except that it is!” says the hopeful part of me, the one that remains rosy cheeked despite 2 sleepless nights with our little guy’s new cold. So it’s a bit of both, that’s how I’d sum up this move and here’s why: It’s a complicated process…. 

Read More »

Roasted fall vegetables: potatoes and fennel

roasted potatoes and fennel

I’VE SAID IT BEFORE AND IT’S STILL TRUE: if your kids are reluctant to eat veggies, the best thing you can do is roast them. The veggies, not the kids. Here’s my favorite way to prepare almost any vegetable, and bonus, the best way to slide a new one in there too. We combined a… 

Read More »

mini chicken pot pies with flowers & star crusts

mini chicken pot pies, foodlets

I MADE THESE POT PIES TWICE RECENTLY, once big (for the family) and once small (for each person). The second time I used leftovers from Gwyneth Paltrow’s delicious Rotisserie Style Roast Chicken. Estelle LOVED it. Phoebe was sick. Paul liked them both though he did say that more crust on the bigger version was better…. 

Read More »

Mashed potatoes with pork gravy

mashed potatoes with pork gravy

OLD SCHOOL AND PERFECT for cold weather, I made a variation of Shepard’s pie this week with steamed broccoli on the side. I also learned something in the process: toddlers are excellent at mashing potatoes. Destroying something with no regard for making a mess along the way? Why didn’t I think of this earlier?

Toasted apple butter hand pies (a Martha Stewart makeover)

apple butter handpies, foodlets

DESPITE THE UBER-URBAN SETTING, I WAS OBSESSED with all things domestic during my NYC days. Single, living in a series of 4th floor walk-ups and working all hours…it was an unlikely fit. (And definitely not very cool.) Then there was the question of space. None of the six apartments I eventually lived in had what… 

Read More »

pumpkin spice mini muffins

2 pumpkin mini muffins, foodlets

DON’T GET ME WRONG, I STILL LOVE my Barefoot Contessa. But today’s makeover recipe from Paula Deen looked so good — and had so many amazing reviews (766 and counting!?) — on Food Network.com that I couldn’t really resist. They’re both big ladies with even bigger personalities, and all that laughing. Come on, it’s joy… 

Read More »

Ina Garten’s Lentil soup with sausage

WE LOVED IT, PHOEBE DIDN’T. Such is life, especially when you’ve got a toddler. This lentil soup, originally inspired by the Barefoot Contessa, is a favorite for Paul and me but this time I added a couple of special ingredients: lentils that Paul got from the Salone Del Gusto food festival plus fresh turkey sausage…. 

Read More »