Where does the time go??

Hi, I’m sorry I’ve been neglecting you! Been busy, busy, busy. I will keep it short – here is a recipe you will like – and it’s FAT FREE!!!

Sunshine Salad Dressing

Mix together:

  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard.

That’s it!


  • Add 1/4 tsp powered cumin for a Mexican dressing
  • 1/4 tsp Chinese 5 Spice for an Asian dressing
  • 1/2 tsp crushed fennel seeds for an Italian dressing

September 21, 2011 · Jude · Comments Closed
Posted in: Salads & Dressings

Mission Impossible?


EASY, INEXPENSIVE, ENJOYABLE – AND HEALTHY!   We are bombarded daily, through emails, internet, print media and TV with theories, threats and warnings on everything from obesity,  heart disease, salmonella outbreaks, cultural decline and rising food costs.  What can be done?

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is simply this: Fix a low fat, fun, fantastic, flavorful – yet frugal feast for your family and friends -  in a just a few minutes.  Can you do it?  This is America – of course you can.

In this rapidly changing world, it’s important to keep traditional alive; so here’s our time honored summer BBQ menu:  Bar T BBQ Chicken (low fat and healthy) Picnic Potato Salad (what’s a BBQ without it?) Wacky Watermelon Salad (very refreshing)  This menu is not a drain on the budget, is low in fat, low in calories and a snap to make.  In addition, actual cooking time is minimized to keep energy costs down, and you fresh and cool. 

For a mere 367 calories and 4 grams of fat – yes, only 4 grams of fat,  you can feast and not feel guilty about having seconds.  In addition, you are sharing a meal that is loaded with nutrients.  The watermelon alone is a treasure trove of antioxidants.  You guys out there pay attention – this magnificent melon contains more lycopene than a tomato.

Lycopene is on the frontline when it comes to protecting  you against prostrate cancer.  (And you thought watermelon seed spitting contests were just for kids).  The chicken breast will provide plenty of mean lean protein, and the carbs in the potato salad are good for brain function, and also for the building and repair of tissue, and will provide plenty of energy for fun and games. 

The strategy –   Up to a week or so in advance, prepare the Bar T Barbecue Sauce (15 minutes).  The day  before prepare the Picnic Potato Salad (30 minutes) Morning of the party, thaw the chicken and make the Wacky Watermelon Salad (10 minutes).  So, there you have it – a menu not so impossible.  This column will self-destruct in 5 seconds – unfortunately dirty dishes won’t – so use paper plates (from recycled paper, of course).

Show me the recipes!!

July 24, 2010 · Jude · Comments Closed
Posted in: Beef

Spring at last!

Instant Cole Slaw, Sugar Shack Pork and  Indian Corn sticks

Eating outside has always held a special fascination for me – and my biological clock is telling me we should be eating out on the patio NOW.

So far, this has been the rainiest spring in my memory. Maybe it is not my dampest spring, but certainly the wettest.

Growing up in San Francisco, where spring and summer are always enveloped in fog, the only two days nice enough to dine alfresco were the first day of school (naturally) and Christmas Day. Christmas of 1972 we actually had a picnic on the beach!

In the Mother lode, springtime provides a beautiful and very long lasting venue for ventilated vittles, or at least up until this year; I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Dining out of doors, unless we are trying to impress the neighbors or the boss, means informality. Plastic glasses are ok, and so is disposable plate ware. If you want to be a bit more “Martha-esque”, put out some gaily colored paper napkins (designer, of course). Be sure and weight them down with something heavy like a Waterford crystal paperweight or a can of Spam (depending upon your guest list).

The main concern, when eating outside in springtime, is keeping the food hot. If you have some of those electric warming trays or an electric frying pan stashed in a closet somewhere, this is a goodtime to dust them off. Fondue pots are helpful, and can be used to keep sauces or even a bit of chili hot if there is no room on the grill.

The other worry, and more so in other parts of the country, is the threat of a sudden rainstorm. Caterers on the east coast always have an alternate locale for garden weddings, just in case.

We don’t usually have to contend with such drastic weather changes (knock on wood), but this year, an alternate plan of action might be a good idea.

If you want to BBQ, plan on menu choices that are quickly grilled in 15 minutes or less, and could be alternately finished off inside, in case the weather turns. This is not the season for a nine-pound roast on the rotisserie!

It’s been a while since I saw a bug, but before you venture forth with the frankfurters, carefully check out the dining site for bees, mosquitoes and ants. And before you plunk down your bankroll for the designer paper napkins, make sure that the garden isn’t full of allergy-laden blooms, or they will turn into very expensive Kleenex.

Once you’ve cleaned and polished the grill, stocked up on citronella candles and located the fly swatter, you’re ready for the culinary kick-off of the calendar.

One of the great things about eating outside is you don’t have to dust, and it smells even better than furniture polish!

Show me the recipes!!

April 19, 2010 · Jude · Comments Closed
Posted in: Cole Slaw, Pork, Vegetables

The High-Tech Irish

Irish Pub Biscuits, Irish Oatmeal Shortbread, Potato Soup O’Brian, Waterford Wilted Cabbage Salad

James McElligott  immigrated from Ireland a long, long time ago.  He often spoke of his favorite pub.  When his great grandson left on a business trip to the old sod, he asked him to “have a pint for Papa”.

After the young man had checked into his hotel, he went straight to the pub. “What’ll it be me boy?” the bartender asked.  “I’ll have a Guinness – for my Papa!” he said, as he reached in his pocket for his cell phone. 

“Papa, I’m here at O’Malley’s – and I’m having a pint for you”. “Lad, look around, tell me what you see” the elderly man eagerly asked.  I see a mouse on the bar, next to the Apple; and I hear there’s a lot of RAM in the backroom”, he replied, tongue in cheek.

“Well”, said the old man with a sigh, “things haven’t changed a bit – O’Malley was always a bit of a slob”.

O’Malley’s notwithstanding, things have changed a bit.  Ireland is now the Silicon Valley of Europe. You will find a plethora of  PC’s and surprisingly, there are Mac’s everywhere!

A country that faced a long battle with poverty is now thriving. The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, is no longer the exclusive of Leprechauns.

Restaurants with all types of cuisines abound; and now there’s more on the menu than potatoes.  But, when St. Patrick’s Day rolls around; the Irish look to tradition.

No, you won’t find a lot of corned beef and cabbage – that is an American creation, but you will be served up potatoes, cabbage, carrots, oats and apples – all hearty Irish crops.

Traditionally, bacon was the main meat (Irish bacon closely resembles ham or Canadian bacon).  Next in line was lamb, poultry, fish and shellfish.

For the average Irishman, beef was scarcer than hen’s teeth; Even though English lords maintained herds of beef in Ireland for grazing; those herds were shipped back to England to grace the tables of the wealthy. 

Thanks to inventive Irish bakers,” bit of the sweet” served up with cream, topped off the meal.

Today, an Irish feast whether on the Emerald Isle, or in the Mother lode, has limitless possibilities.  But, to keep it traditional – potatoes, cabbage and a dessert are a must.  To be truly authentic, a glass of something a wee bit strong, is suggested.

And, of course, an Irish toast – “As you slide down the banister of life, May the splinters never point in the wrong direction”.

Show me the recipes!!

March 19, 2010 · Jude · Comments Closed
Posted in: Biscuits, Potatoes, Shortbread, Soups & Stews, Vegetables

Happy New Year!

May 2010 be the best year ever for you and your family!

January 1, 2010 · Jude · Comments Closed
Posted in: General