The World’s Best Sangria

Hi all! Sorry I haven’t posted in like two years. I’ve been busy with school. I know that’s not an excuse, but it is what it is.

It’s summer! With summer comes no school, beach days and barbecues. I love summer because I get to go swimming in my parents’ pond, I get to go camping and I get to have bonfires. Also: s’mores. Enough said, am I right?

For this recipe all I did was find a nice bottle of red wine and use what I had in my fridge. I encourage you to do the same. Sangria is something you can make with so many different ingredients that you definitely don’t have to follow the recipe to the T.

I hope you enjoy and have a great Father’s Day!



-1 bottle of red wine that you like

-16 oz of cranberry juice (no sugar added)

-8 oz of pomegranate juice

-handful of strawberries, hulled

-handful of raspberries


  1. Rinse fruit.
  2. Combine ingredients in a large pitcher.
  3. Refrigerate over night.

That’s it. It’s as easy as pie. No go out and enjoy this beautiful day!


Review of Black Lotus Brewery

I have been to the Black Lotus Brewery in Clawson, Michigan before, but today was different. I had never been there for lunch and I was introducing a friend of mine, Sarah, to it. I also met up with my friend Erin. They had never met, but I knew they would hit it off because they were both teachers.

The atmosphere at Black Lotus is perfect. There is a long list of beers on a chalkboard on the far wall as you walk in. The tables are well set up. There is seating outside for summer days just like today (sunny and a high of what seemed like 80 degrees Fahrenheit.)

The waitress that served us today was very friendly. She sadly didn’t introduce herself or I’d give her a shout out for being so wonderful. She was well-dressed. She asked me what I wanted to drink right away. I was reading on my Kindle while I waited for the girls to show up and she didn’t seem to mind. She kept my water filled as the lunch went along and was quick to bus the dishes.

I had a carrot-ginger soup to start off with. It wasn’t too creamy but it was just a little bit. I topped it with some oyster crackers that came with it. After that I got the house salad which was in a bowl that I had never seen before. The back of the bowl was taller than the front of the bowl. I had to toss the salad myself, but other than that it was good. I had it topped with grilled chicken which was perfectly seasoned and warm. I asked for Balsamic Vinaigrette and it was a perfect fit. I am really happy with what I ordered.

Erin got a sandwich with temp-eh on it. I had never tried temp-eh before so I gave it a taste and it was really good. She didn’t get anything to go with the sandwich so I didn’t get to taste a side of hers.

Sarah got a burger and fries which I must say is a very good choice for the Black Lotus. They have amazing burgers and their sweet potato fries are to die for. Sarah got regular fries, sadly, because she doesn’t like sweet potatoes. The burger also came with a pickle spear which I attempted to eat, but she was having none of it. She guarded that pickle with her life.

All in all it was a great lunch with some great people. I can’t wait to go back again.

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Dill Salmon Burgers

So today I wanted to make salmon burgers. I found a recipe that called for canned salmon. I refuse to use canned salmon. I want fresh fish. That’s just me, though. If you want to use canned salmon, you won’t have to do as much work. You can skip skinning the salmon and chopping the salmon. I would definitely drain it, though.

It was nice. I found salmon on sale at Meijer and bought every one they had (That would be one fillet, by the way). What can I say? I’m a pretty lucky gal.

I really enjoyed making these. They were pretty easy. They turned out good and I even have food for tomorrow since my boyfriend and I only had one patty each.



1 egg

1 lb Alaskan salmon

¼ medium onion

1 clove garlic, minced

½ cup panko bread crumbs

1 tbsp dried dill

1 tbsp olive oil


Romaine lettuce

Sandwich thins


  1. Skin the salmon fillet using a sharp knife. Put the knife in between the skin and the fish meat. Then, pull the skin away from the meat.
  2. Cut off about 4 oz. of the salmon fillet. Put in a food processor or blender for a few seconds.
  3. Roughly chop the rest of the salmon fillet.
  4. Add egg, salmon, onion, garlic, panko bread crumbs, and dried dill to a large bowl. Use your hands to combine all of these ingredients.
  5. Add olive oil to a grill pan. Heat the grill pan to medium heat.
  6. Make salmon patties.
  7. Cook the salmon patties for a few minutes on each side.
  8. Assemble burgers with mayonnaise and lettuce on sandwich thins.

Makes three patties.


Pork Chops with Apples and Onions

It’s fall and I love a good meat and potatoes type meal. I’m from the Midwest so it makes sense. That’s why this meal is perfect for this time of year. It has meat (pork chops) and it pairs perfectly with something like mashed potatoes or you could do baked potatoes or whatever you like. It’s really up to you.

This dish does call for hard cider, but feel free to substitute regular cider. I’m sure that would work just as well. Also, I used gala apples, but you can use whatever apples you have in your kitchen. I don’t want to make you buy a certain type of apples if you already have some on hand.















-4 pork chops

-vegetable oil

-2 tsp salt

-2 tsp pepper

-3 tsp dried rosemary

-2 tsp garlic powder

-2 apples (your choice), sliced

-1/2 sweet yellow onion, sliced

-1/2 red onion, sliced

-1 cup hard cider


1. In a small bowl, mix salt, pepper, rosemary and garlic powder. Season your pork chops liberally.

2. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Place 2 pork chops into pan. Cook on each side for four minutes. Take pork chops out and cook remaining pork chops the same way.

3. Place onions and apples into skillet. Pour in part of the hard cider (about 1/4 of a cup) and deglaze the pan while tossing apples and onions. Add the rest of the hard cider and let it simmer for about five minutes uncovered until the liquid reduces a bit. Add the pork chops back into the skillet and cover. Turn off the heat and let it sit for a couple minutes. Using tongs, take out the pork chops and place onions and apples on top. Serve and enjoy.

Serves four.

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Mexican Pulled Pork Tacos

Hi all! I know it’s been a long time since I posted and I apologize. I was in Peru for the summer so I didn’t really do any posting and I haven’t really cooked anything worthy of a post since before the summer. I always want to make something that isn’t too basic, but also tastes good. One of the things I tried making that was new didn’t turn out very good so I wouldn’t indignify my readers by posting a recipe that I didn’t like. I want to make sure that the recipes I post are practically fool-proof.

This week has been a yummy week. I had pulled pork sandwiches the other day and I only used half the pork shoulder so I was able to save the rest for these pork tacos. The pork tacos turned out fabulous. I was really happy. You can dress them up any way you want. I just used the basic taco toppings. Anyways, I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.



-1/2 pork shoulder

-1 15 oz can of tomato sauce

-1 tbsp chili powder

-1 tbsp ground cumin

-1 tbsp brown sugar

-1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

-1/2 tsp salt

-3 cloves garlic, minced


-your favorite taco toppings


1. Put pork shoulder into the crock pot.

2. Mix together other ingredients in a small bowl.

3. Pour sauce on pork shoulder.

4. Cook on high for 8 hours.

5. Pull the pork apart with two forks.

6. Add pork to tortillas

7. Add toppings that you like. I added lettuce, onion, black olives and sour cream.


Peas and Pasta Carbonara

Sorry I haven’t written in so long. I have been busy with school and stuff. I know it’s not a good excuse, but that’s all I’ve got. 

Anyways. It’s winter which means heartier meals. This pasta dish has a very thick creamy sauce that’s very yummy. It also comes with peas and ham which is always a good combo. Another thing that’s great is it’s enough for more than one night which means you’ll have a couple nights where you don’t have to cook which is always nice. Hope you enjoy!




-1 package fettuccine

-2 cups frozen peas

-2 tablespoons butter

-1 garlic clove, minced

-1-1/2 cups milk

-1 package cream cheese, cubed

-4 oz deli ham, cubed

-1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese



1. In a large pot, cook fettuccine according to package directions. Add peas during the last three minutes of cooking.

2. In a large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add garlic. Cook for one minute. Add milk and cream cheese. Cook until combined. Remove from heat. Stir in ham and Parmesan cheese. 

3. Drain fettuccine and peas. Toss with sauce. Sprinkle with pepper. 

Makes 6 servings.


It’s Pumpkin Time

Unless you have been living under a rock for the last month, you’ve been surrounded by the hoopla of “pumpkin spice everything.” The biggest thing is the pumpkin spice latte. I prefer to get mine from Starbucks. If you are in need of a good syrup for pumpkin spice syrup to put in your coffee, I recommend this recipe. I haven’t actually tried it, but it looks like it would work.

If you aren’t a coffee drinker and you are looking for an easy milkshake recipe, you are in the right place. If you love apples and the spice blend put in pumpkin pie, you are also in the right place. That’s right people, you are getting two recipes for the price of one today!

First, we have The Easy Pumpkin PIe Milkshake.

This milkshake is great for beginners or for people who just want a quick and easy milkshake.Image


-1 cup 2% milk

-1/2 cup canned pumpkin pie

-6 scoops frozen yogurt


1. Put all ingredients in a blender.

2. Blend together until smooth.

Serves 2.


The second recipe is the Pumpkin Spiced Applesauce. It’s a great breakfast item or it would be a good side dish with pork chops.



-four golden crisp apples (or whatever you have on hand)

-1/2 tsp of vanilla

-1/4 tsp cloves

-1/4 tsp cinnamon

-1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice

-1/4 tsp nutmeg

-2 tbsps brown sugar



1. Wash and peel the apples

2. Add the apples to a medium stockpot with about an inch of warm water.

3. Add all the spices, the vanilla and the brown sugar to the water.

5. Boil the apples.

6. Bring them to a simmer.

7. Cook on low until the apples are soft.

8. Get rid of extra water.

9. Mash apples with a potato masher or a fork.

Serves 2.


Cliff Bell’s (Detroit, Mi) Review

So first thing is first. I didn’t have a good experience here. I know, right? 

The food was good. I got a thing of mussels and a bowl of tomato bisque. The tomato bisque wasn’t as good as the mussels, but it was edible. The mussels were salty and garlicky and chewy. All the things that mussels were supposed to be. 

The biggest problem we had was the waiter. He did not want to serve us. He didn’t check up on us enough and he just didn’t seem to care. I had to go to the bar to ask for silverware and a soup spoon. It was ridiculous!

When I told him that I didn’t enjoy the soup, he complained that I had already eaten half of it. Of course I had! You hadn’t checked up on us and I was hungry and bored!

The music was also too loud. It was good jazz and all, but it was difficult to converse with l’ boyfriend and I do enjoy doing that.

Oh well. C’este la vie. 

Hope you find a better place in Detroit to go after a Lions game. That’s all I’m sayin’.

Chocolate-covered strawberries

Hey y’all. The Fourth of July has passed and I haven’t posted any patriotic-themed desserts. Sorry about that. I have been busy with my own Fourth of July celebrations. Last weekend I went to Caseville where people did fireworks on the beach. It was quite spectacular, I must say.

Yesterday, my boyfriend and I barbecued. We had burgers, four types of salad and fruit. He had beer and I had some hard cider. There were fireworks all over so we got to see some more which was really cool.

So I know that a lot of people have already celebrated the Fourth, but I am sure that some of you are celebrating this weekend. This recipe is great for a back-yard barbecue. It is bound to wow all your friends.











(Adapted from


Chocolate Sauce:

1/2 heavy cream

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

10 oz. dark chocolate chips

1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


1. Put butter and cream in a small stock pot. Bring to boil.

2. Take off the heat and wait two minutes for it to cool a bit.

3. Add chocolate chips and vanilla to bowl that can withstand heat.

4. Add cream mixture to chocolate chip mixture.

5. Stir well

6. Dip strawberries in chocolate sauce, holding onto the stems so you don’t get your fingers messy.


Paula Deen: Are her restaurants next?

Everyone seems to be voicing their opinion on the Paula Deen scandal that is all over the news. I thought I would put my ten cents in.

First, we should start with the facts.

There are many allegations against Paula Deen. Mostly, the media is going after Paula for her use of the N word over twenty years ago. Think about that.

Is honesty the best policy? Should she have lied and said she had never used the N word ever, not once in her entire White Southern belle life?

Let’s be realistic here. Slaves got their freedom by the way of the Underground Railroad on the way to the NORTHERN states not the SOUTHERN states. Understand?

Most of the more serious allegations seem to be against Brother Bubba. It’s basic pre-civil rights era rights that Blacks were told they didn’t have.

In the past, Paula Deen’s restaurants forced African Americans to enter in the back of the house, never be employed in the front of the house and had to use only one restroom.

Have you seen the Help? Half the movie was about how the Black maid was not allowed to use the same toilet as the family she was serving. The young journalist-hopeful made sure the woman employing that Black maid was humiliated by tricking the women in that town to recycle old toilets on the lawn of said White woman (too many prepositions? Don’t think so).

I don’t really understand how Paula Deen made planning a wedding racist. What can I say, the lady has talent when it comes to that sort of thing…

In the end, her restaurants will be affected in some way.

I am not surprised that she lost so many sponsors. Companies have to protect their bottom line which means avoiding bad press.

Anywho, this week, I’m going to be making some 4th of July treats! Come back and see us!