Welcome to my site!

Welcome to my site!
I'm Cindy, and I love to cook! And, I love to eat... hence the size of my rear end! I come from a long line of cooks. My great great Grandmother was a cook in the original Harvey Houses. My grandmother Julia was an awesome cook, and my mom was incredible. I owe my skills to these great women. Especially my Mom who said this to me about making gravy... "Cindy Lynn, wallpaper paste is wallpaper paste & gravy is gravy. Never the two shall meet!" Shall we say my first experience at making gravy left a little bit to be desired! Thank the high heavens my cooking skills have improved since then! Enjoy!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Quinoa - Mediterranean Style

Yesterday I posted information about Quinoa. In the new year we are trying to make more healthy eating choices. Quinoa seems to be a food that is not only good for you - but extremely tasty too! So, here’s my first attempt at making Quinoa. I decided to keep it simple, because we had not eaten quinoa before. I didn’t want to disguise the flavor of it with a lot of spices and added ingredients. So, I just added some olive oil, lemon juice and zest, salt and pepper. At the last minute, on a whim, I chopped a bit of cilantro and added that as well. I’m really pleased with how this turned out. I’m definitely going to make quinoa again, and I’ll probably get a little more adventurous with adding other ingredients the next time.


1 c. uncooked quinoa
1 c. chicken broth
1 c. water
1 lemon, zested and juiced
Olive oil
Salt & Pepper
If desired – chopped cilantro, or perhaps flat leaf parsley


Thoroughly rinse quinoa in cold water. I used one of my fine meshed sieves to run the water through without losing any of the grain. Drain thoroughly twice before cooking.

Note: Don’t add salt to quinoa until it has cooked fully (the grain will not open completely if you do so).

Bring the water & chicken broth to a boil in a saucepan that has a lid. Add the quinoa and bring back to a boil. Cover and simmer for 10 – 15 minutes. Quinoa is done when soft and translucent and the
quinoa’s spiral-shaped germ ring has separated.

Remove from heat and fluff with a fork. Add the lemon juice and lemon zest. Lightly drizzle olive oil over the quinoa. Salt & Pepper to taste. If desired, add cilantro or parsley.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

So... What IS Quinoa?

Quinoa (pronounced Keen-wah) is usually thought to be a whole grain. However, it is actually a seed. Quinoa can be prepared like whole grains such as rice or barley. I’m going to make it for dinner tonight. My friend, Laura, really loves it and has spoken very highly of its taste and versatility.

I’ve read it takes less time to cook than other whole grains – just 10 to 15 minutes. It is said that quinoa tastes great on its own, unlike other grains such as millet or teff. Of all the whole grains, quinoa has the most protein. Quinoa provides all 9 essential amino acids, making it a complete protein. It is also a gluten-free and cholesterol-free whole grain, is kosher for Passover, and is almost always organic.

Quinoa was a staple food for thousands of years in the Andes region of South America as one of just a few crops the ancient Incas cultivated at such high altitude.

Hopefully my first attempt with Quinoa will be successful and I’ll have pictures and a recipe for you tomorrow. Wish me luck!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Garlic Rosemary Beef Tenderloin

Beef Tenderloin. Mmm Mmm good! So tasty and delicious. If you're not "wild" about rosemary and garlic, you could season the tenderloin as you like. The trick is the roasting method; high temperature and fairly quick. So moist and tender - it just melts in your mouth.


Beef Tenderloin
Salt & Pepper
Garlic Cloves
Fresh Rosemary


Preheat oven to 500 degrees F.

Take the tenderloin out of the fridge. Let it stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes.

Using a mini chopper make a paste out of garlic cloves and fresh rosemary. Use enough garlic and rosemary to make enough paste to rub over the tenderloin. I used 5 cloves of garlic and the leaves from a 12” – 16” stalk of rosemary.

Rinse the tenderloin and pat it dry. Place the tenderloin on a baking sheet. Rub the garlic and rosemary over the tenderloin; season with salt and pepper.

Roast in the oven for exactly 22 minutes for rare and 25 minutes for medium-rare. (According the Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa)

Remove the tenderloin from the oven. Allow beef to stand for about 20 minutes before slicing.

Note: I made some Bearnaise sauce to drizzle over the beef. My secret? Knorr packaged Bearnaise sauce. It’s FANTASTIC!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Wholly Guacamole

I WON! The "Wholly Guacamole" contest from Foodie Blogroll.

What a wonderful surprise there was waiting for me on my doorstep when I arrived home today!

I knew that I had won, but I had forgotten. I received the email over the Christmas weekend. Hubby called me to ask "What did you order now?" I couldn't remember ordering anything - so I was stumped. But when we opened the boxes I knew right away and was so excited.

We've already tried the chips and the "spicy guacamole". YUM-O. Definitely TWO THUMBS UP! There were coupons included too. I see a trip to the grocery store in my future... as soon as all these wonderful goodies are gobbled up... which probably won't be very long!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Calamari Tomato & Caper Salad

I made Giada De Laurentis' Calamari Tomato and Caper salad as the first course for our New Years Eve dinner. It was excellent. Deliciously succulent and so fresh tasting with the lemon and capers.

here to be redirected to the Food Network site and Giada's recipe. One word of caution - make sure to purchase already cleaned calamari. I didn't pay very close attention to the box that I purchased at our grocery store. What should have taken me about 15 minutes to prepare ended up taking me about 2 1/2 hours. Oy!
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