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This BLT Salad will be a Mother’s Day Favorite!

If you are looking for a great salad to add to your picnic for Mom’s Day, graduation, or just a get-together, try this BLT Salad…..all the flavors of that favorite  bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich in a bowl! Simple and delicious!

BLT PASTA SALAD

with

Creamy Bacon Dressing

 

To keep the dressing from curdling, be sure to cool the bacon drippings to room temperature before adding to the mayonnaise.

Makes 20 servings 

COOK:

1 lb. dry campanelle pasta
1 lb. thick-sliced bacon, diced

WHISK:
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. minced shallots
2 Tbsp. minced fresh basil
2 Tbsp. cider vinegar
2 tsp.sugar

Salt and black pepper to taste

STIR IN:

4 cups chopped romaine lettuce 4 cups halved grape tomatoes

Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water according to package directions. Transfer pasta to a bowl of ice water; drain well.

Cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp. Transfer bacon to a paper- towel-lined plate. Reserve 3 Tbsp. drippings; set aside to cool.Whisk together mayonnaise, reserved drippings, shallots, basil, vinegar, and sugar in a large bowl; season with salt and pepper.

Stir in pasta, romaine, tomatoes, and bacon; toss to coat. Season salad with salt and pepper.

Dear Friends! I hope you enjoy this delicious salad! This year, I used medium sized ball jars for individual servings….they looked super cute on the table, and made serving easy (the best!).

This year will be my daughter, Jodi’s, first “Almost A Mom’s Day!” They are deciding what to name the baby, and I’m trying to decide what the baby will call Steve and I. 

Check out some of my fun finds! As always, thanks for swinging by and have a wonderful Mother’s Day!

Cheers! Laura

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Gallery

Gimme S’more Lovin’ this Summer!

Ahhhhh….summertime! Picnics and seasonal celebrations calls for putting a twist on your favorite treats! 

All the ‘fixins’ for a desert s’mores buffet seems like a great idea until the next day when the ants have invaded the delicious droppings from the well intended sweet treat. “What was I thinking,” you remind yourself.  

Well, alas, here is an inviting alternative to the work and the mess while preserving the integrity of the sweet s’more…. S’Mores Cookies which I found in a back issue of Cuisine Magazine.

No more long, hot, dangerous pokers prancing around the fire in the dark, carrying a flaming marshmallow in search of that elusive graham cracker and chocolate. This delicious cookie even looks the part!

S’Mores Cookies

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Enjoy the delicious taste of s’mores without the mess with these S’Mores Cookies!

Makes 4 dozen cookies
1 cup all-purpose flour

  • 3/4 cup fine graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/2 tsp. each baking soda and kosher salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened (8 Tbsp.)
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup each granulated sugar and packed
  • brown sugar 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 24 large marshmallows, halved horizontally or the new flat ones 
  • 48 Hershey’s chocolate bar pieces (4 bars)IMG_8128

Preheat oven to 375°.

  1. Whisk together flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking soda, and salt in a bowl.
  2. Cream butter, peanut butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar in a large bowl with a mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, 5 minutes.
  3. Beat in egg and vanilla until incorporated. Blend in flour mixture on low speed just until incorporated.
  4. Scoop dough with #60
    scoop (about 1 Tbsp.) onto ungreased baking sheets.
  5. Bake cookies 4 minutes. Top each with a marshmallow half and bake until golden, 4–5 minutes more.
  6. Transfer cookies to cooling racks, press chocolate pieces on top, and let stand 5 minutes. 

Dear Friends, Cheers to summertime, picnics and all of the celebrations that create great memories! I love this s’mores cookie, because the thought of rescuing the little ones from flaming marshmallows and dangerous sharp pokers is relieving at best! Feel free to shop my latest finds for trends in style for home and you!

Cheers and happy baking!

🍷 Laura

P.S. Don’t forget to check out my new shop, FOLIO TRENDS, for the latest in ladies’ fashion. These are a few of my faves + FREE SHIPPING!

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Gallery

CELEBRATING DAD

I feel so blessed to have both of my parent’s still living. My mom is 85 and my dad will be 89 this August. Married for 64 years and still living in the same home I grew up in, I find that their needs are so simple and their wants are few. The greatest gift is time spent together. I have tried, with not great success, to purchase gifts for my dad, Paul. His comfort zone is pretty small, and still drives, so he pretty much gets what he wants for himself.IMG_0389

I can’t believe some of the things I’ve tried to buy for both my parents and my visiting Grandparents from New York over the years. One year, I went to F.W. Woolworths, the five & dime store, and purchased cool bottles of cheap cologne for everyone. That didn’t go well, and it was hard not to show my hurt feelings when it was ‘suggested’ that I return them. One year, I creatively purchased everyone Hawaiian button down collared shirts, carefully choosing ones that were a little different from each other! Yikes! I really never realized that as we get older, we need so much less and frivolous spending is just that. 

The picture above shows Paul regifting to my Steve a treasured gift from past Dad’s Days! Regifting is a great way to share past memories with family members!
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My Jodi celebrating every day she can with Lynn & Paul. She loves to brighten their day.

 

And now for the fun part….DAD’S DAY DINNER!

Paul has a simple palate….depending on the restaurant. Shrimp & lobster sauce for Chinese, lasagna roll ups for Italian, hot pastrami on rye piled high for Deli, and then there’s the grill! Aside from ribs, hot sausage sandwiches oozing with grilled onions and peppers are the hit of the day. Throw in some grilled redskin potatoes and corn on the cob…..you have our Paulie’s heart!

GRILLED HOT & SWEET ITALIAN SAUSAGE SANDWICHES with ROASTED ONIONS & PEPPERS

IMG_0823

SUPER SIMPLE AND A GREAT DO AHEAD! SERVES 6

1 pound sweet Italian sausage
1 pound hot Italian sausage
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 large cloves garlic, crushed
4 large onion, sliced in 1/2 inch slices
1 cubanelle pepper, sliced and seeded
1 each red, yellow & orange bell pepper, seeded and sliced in 1/2 inch slices
1/8 t. salt and pepper 

6 crusty submarine sandwich rolls

Pre-heat oven to 400*F. Combine cut up peppers & onions in a roasting pan. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper, & toss to combine.

Roast, turning occasionally for 30-40 min. until soft but not mushy.

While the onions & peppers are roasting, light the grill to med-high heat. Grill the sausages until lightly browned on all sides and cooked through, approximately 10 min. total. Split the sub rolls and place open side on the grill for about 1 min.& set aside.

Combine sausage with onions & peppers and serve!

 

IMG_4496Make it a one pot, super easy meal! Throw in 1 1/2 lb. quartered small redskin potatoes with the onions & peppers and roast as directed above.

GRILLED CORN ON THE COB

This is a perfect way to grill corn on the cob adapted from Bobby Flay!

Grilled corn on the cob

Heat the grill to medium.
Pull the outer husks down the ear to the base. Strip away the silk from each ear of corn. Fold husks back into place, and place the ears of corn in a large bowl of cold water with 1 tablespoon of salt for 10 minutes.
Remove corn from water and shake off excess. Place the corn on the grill, close the cover and grill for 15 to 20 minutes, turning every 5 minutes, or until kernels are tender when pierced with a paring knife. Remove the husks and eat on the cob or remove the kernels. Serve with butter on the side.

(Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/bobby-flay/perfectly-grilled-corn-on-the-cob-recipe.html?oc=linkback)

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Cheers to celebrating the dad in your life! At our house, we love to show appreciation for all of the wonderful and individual ways dads positively influence our children at all ages.

Children live what they learn’….no truer words have ever been spoken.