2 Steps to the Best Whipped Cream You’ve Ever Had

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I was that kid who wanted a tiny slice of pie under a mountain of whipped cream. Fluffy, white, gooey, sweet deliciousness. Back then, I wasn’t particular about the brand or the type: Reddi-whip, Cool Whip, whatever! Drown me in it.

Since then, I’ve become much more moderate. I’ve also discovered that real whipped cream makes the difference between good pie and amazing pie. And it’s so simple and quick to make!

Since then, I’ve become much more moderate. I’ve also discovered that real whipped cream makes the difference between good pie and amazing pie. And it’s so simple and quick to make!

Lauri2 Steps to the Best Whipped Cream You’ve Ever Had

Free “Love Your Leftovers” Guide

Tasty browned roast turkey

The salad is shot. The turkey is toast. The dressing is done. Now what does the resourceful chef do with this carcass on the countertop?

What if I told you that long ago, they figured out the best way to handle turkey, and I do it today and love it? Come learn the secrets of our grandparents (and probably the pilgrims!) to make the most of your Thanksgiving feast!

LauriFree “Love Your Leftovers” Guide

How to Make Amazing Vegetables Every Time

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I am thrilled to have found a new favorite way to cook veggies. Roasting them in a hot oven brings out a lovely caramelized flavor, slightly crisp on the edges and creamy in the middle. Even vegetables I’ve never really cared about, like cauliflower or acorn squash, are suddenly amazing. Roasting vegetables is easy and rewarding: Cut your vegetables into manageable pieces: cubes, slices florets (peel if appropriate) Toss with a bit of olive oil and salt. Roast in a hot oven 400-500 degrees F for 15-40 min (It depends on how hard the veggie is, so squash takes longer than cauliflower). Delightful flavor. Why haven’t I been doing this for the past 15 years? Here are some more specifics if you want them. Try tossing just olive oil & salt with: Acorn squash, peeled & cubed 1/2” (425* for 40 min, flip halfway) Butternut or buttercup squash, peeled & sliced 1/8” (425* for 20 min) Sweet Potatoes, peeled & sliced 1/4″ Asparagus Parsnips, peeled & sliced Try cauliflower (cut into florets) tossed with: 1 Tbsp olive oil 1 Tbsp lemon juice preferably fresh 1/4 tsp pepper 1/4 tsp onion powder a pinch of salt Roast 15 min @ 500* (stir halfway) Here’s how I did our acorn squash tonight Cut your standard acorn squash in half lengthwise Scoop out the seeds Before you cut any further, peel off all that you can Then cut in the grooves between the wedges Peel the rest (it really is so much easier if you’ve already peeled what …

LauriHow to Make Amazing Vegetables Every Time

13 Simple Romantic Home Date Night Ideas (& Chocolate Fondue recipe)

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  Staying on the same page as a couple is paramount for us. Before kids, we took dates whenever we wanted, but now it’s a bit trickier. We try to have date night twice a month, and then set apart the opposite weeks for “Home Date Nights” after the children are in bed. We don’t need to spend a bunch of money to get us face to face conversing and having fun. We just need to get a little creative and remember that fun and connection are the goal! Here are some favorite Home Date Night ideas, hoping to appeal to both people: Board games (preferably cooperative ones like Forbidden Island, but Carcassonne and Dominion are fun too) & ice cream 1000 piece puzzle (Springbok are our favorites, and I love this “Color of Money” one. Usually, we find that puzzles filled with paraphernalia are more fun than landscapes) & popcorn Crackers with cream cheese or goat cheese and jalapeño jelly or green olives Exchange massages (with or without massage oil, consider foot rubs if this is new to you) Cook a late dinner together Netflix movie & tea Warm brie cheese with crackers and jam, maybe a glass of wine YouTube dancing lesson (which could be instructional, or just turn out to be a hilarious time!) Play Wii / video games Eat Takeout & Read/discuss a New Yorker (or other thought-provoking) article Bake dessert together Hot tubbing (if you have one; we don’t so it’s on the inexpensive date night ideas list) Luscious Velvety Chocolate Fondue (recipe …

Lauri13 Simple Romantic Home Date Night Ideas (& Chocolate Fondue recipe)

Making Monkey Bread from Roll Scraps

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Perhaps I’m a sucker for cinnamon-sugar.  One day I stumbled upon this way of making use of the scraps from baking rolls.  My mom always rolled the scraps back out into more rolls, but I’m a bit lazy for that.  Making rolls is enough work already, right?  So here’s the roll recipe and the monkey bread method (which is even better!

LauriMaking Monkey Bread from Roll Scraps

My Favorite Playdough Recipe

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I’ve tried quite a few play dough recipes, and many are too sticky, too slimy, smell funny, or crystallize.  This one is fantastic!  It’s nice and elastic, smooth, and not crumbly.  It lasts for months. It’s cheap and easy. My kids love it and as a side benefit: if they eat it, it won’t hurt them.

LauriMy Favorite Playdough Recipe

Breakfast 4 Dinner and a Recipe: Waffles of Insane Greatness

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After realizing we were regularly going out to eat at Cracker Barrel for breakfast foods, we endeavored to master breakfast for ourselves.  In fact, we liked it so well that we began a tradition of having Breakfast 4 Dinner on Sunday nights.  Gradually, we began asking people to join us.

Now we host Breakfast 4 Dinner just about every week, and our daughters have taken to inviting people to come also!  It’s great to have a few recipes to rely on, and this one from Aretha Frankensteins has proved it’s amazingness again and again:

Waffles of Insane Greatness:

LauriBreakfast 4 Dinner and a Recipe: Waffles of Insane Greatness

How to make Celery last so much longer!

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Celery is required in tons of recipes, especially soups!  Unless I’m chopping a veggie plate or scooping peanut butter boats for the kids’ snacks, I don’t use it up very quickly. But I’ll want it handy when that recipe rolls along.

I learned a storage technique that greatly increases the life of my celery:

LauriHow to make Celery last so much longer!

Chicago Dog

Dogs Chicago

If you’ve never tried Chicago-Style Hot Dogs, you’re in for a treat.  We’ve heard them described as being “dragged through the garden” first, delicious! 

Ingredients:

LauriChicago Dog

New Wife Cooking 101

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​I keep thinking about several friends who just got married, and I remember my years of marriage learning-curve: managing a home, meshing two people’s habits and schedules and preferences, actually cooking regular meals… oy vey! What do I wish I’d known about cooking when I jumped into this beautiful madness?

LauriNew Wife Cooking 101