Lo’s NON-Traditional Guacamole


20150704_113254_20150704120627262Okay, so this is not a traditional guacamole recipe, but a least I’m not suggesting you add green peas. ūüôā

This recipe does have some ingredients you don’t find in “regular” guacamole. If that’s what you want, click here:

Real Authentic Mexican Guacamole

I often take MY version of guac to my writer’s group meetings. My writer friends insist they like mine the best of any they’ve tried. (Suddenly, I’m feeling like Mrs. Elton from Emma.)

So here goes: Lo’s NON-Traditional Guacamole
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Easy Chicken Corn Potato Chowder


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Great to warm you up on a frosty winter evening, this chowder is quick and easy:

Click here for the recipe

Sweet Potato and Pineapple Bake


Done! and so delicious!

As I continue cooking with my newfound love, sweet potatoes, I’m always looking to give new twists to familiar recipes. My sister provided this twist.  It is the same basic recipe as this one Cajun Spiced Sweet Potato Hash except the dish is baked and my sister insisted that chopped pineapple took the dish to a whole other level. She’s right.

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Parmesan Shrimp and Spaghetti Squash


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This is another recipe cobbled together from parts of other recipes, so I’ll include links to help things along.

Preparing the spaghetti squash takes the most time. Once the squash has been cooked and scraped from the shell, the dish comes together quickly, so preparation is the key. Have everything chopped, shredded and measured before heating the wok or skillet…

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Cajun-spiced Sweet Potato Hash


I spent most of my life thinking I didn’t like sweet potatoes. I’ve never been a fan of sweets and the only way I’d ever seen sweet potatoes served was “candied,” which means¬† they were so overloaded with brown sugar and maple syrup (or whatever was used) they’d make your teeth stick together. Have you ever tasted something so sweet it was bitter? That’s what I thought sweet potatoes were.

Over the last few months, I’ve learned better. I give credit to Pinterest. First, from “pins”¬†I saw on the site,¬†I tried oven-fried Sweet Potatoes and liked them very much.

Later on, I was on Pinterest looking for side dishes for Thanksgiving and ran across this Cornbread Stuffing with Sweet Potato and Squash recipe. I decided to try it, although as usual, I tweaked the recipe somewhat, including substituting cornbread from scratch for the boxed stuffing. It was very tasty, but pretty labor intensive, so obviously a special- occaision- only dish.

The best part of the recipe was¬†the preparation of the sweet potatoes, butternut squash and apples. It smelled heavenly and I couldn’t resist a few bites. Wow.¬†Fantastic (Essentially the part I’m talking about is the first two steps of the stuffing recipe.)

Since two sweet potatoes, a butternut squash and a Granny Smith apple makes a giant mound of food, I decided to streamline the recipe just using sweet potatoes.

Blog Sweet Potatoes 001Here’s a look¬†the starting ingredients. I call this sweet potato “medium” because some of the ones at the market were huge.¬† Cooking time on each step is approximate.How finely you chop your sweet potato and other items will determine cooking time.

Cajun Spiced Sweet Potato Hash

1 Medium Sweet Potato, peeled and chopped into 1-inch cubes

1/3 cup Green Bell Pepper, diced

1/3 cup Red Bell Pepper, diced

                                                                       1/4 cup Green onion, bulb and tops, diced

                                                                        1 clove of garlic, minced

                                                                        1/3 cup Canola Oil

                                                                        Cajun Creole Seasoning, to taste

Here's everything all prepped and ready to go!

Here’s everything all prepped and ready to go!

1. Heat oil in a wok or large, heavy skillet. Carefully add sweet potatoes. Stirring frequently, cook 8 to 10 minutes.

1. Heat oil in a wok or large, heavy skillet. Carefully add sweet potatoes. Stirring frequently, cook 8 to 10 minutes.

2. Add peppers and onions. Continue cooking and stirring 3 to 5 minutes.

2. Add peppers and onions. Continue cooking and stirring 3 to 5 minutes.

Just as the potatoes are fork-tender and the pepper and onions cook to translucence, add garlic. Stir and cook 3 to 5 minutes. Add Cajun seasoning to taste. The sweet and the heat combined really makes the dish pop.

Just as the potatoes are fork-tender and the pepper and onions cook to translucence, add garlic. Stir and cook 3 to 5 minutes. Add Cajun seasoning to taste. The sweet and the heat combined really makes the dish pop.

This is a beautiful side dish for three to four people or makes a lovely vegan lunch for two!

This is a beautiful side dish for three to four people or makes a lovely vegan lunch for two!

Black Bean Soup Recipe


Whenever I hit upon a recipe that my family goes crazy over, I always want to share it. This is one of those recipes. I love going to recipe sites, but usually don’t follow just one recipe. I take what sounds good from several recipes and combine or omit ingredients, depending on what I have on hand.
This recipe is quick and easy and tastes great!

Vegan Black Bean Soup

Two 14.5 oz cans organic black beans, undrained

One 14.5 oz. can organic black bean soup

One 14.5 oz. can vegetable broth

One 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes

2 cups shredded carrots

1 cup baby bella mushrooms, sliced

2 cups frozen whole kernel corn (drained, if using canned)

1/4 cup diced onion

2 Tbsp. minced garlic

1/4 cup diced red bell pepper

1 Tbsp. olive oil

2 -3 Tbsp.  cooking sherry (optional)

1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce (optional)

In a large soup or stock pot, saute onion, garlic, peppers, carrots and mushrooms in olive oil over medium heat until softened. Add canned beans, soup, tomatoes, corn and vegetable broth. Add sherry and Worcestershire sauce to taste.  Heat to boiling, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Serve over cooked rice.

Top individual servings with chopped jalapeno peppers,  hot sauce, salsa or sour cream if desired.

How easy is that? If shredding carrots sounds like a pain, buy a package of pre-shredded carrots. That’s what I used. ūüôā

This makes a large amount of soup and would probably serve 6 to 8 adults easily.

If you try it, let me know what you think of the recipe!

Armenian Pilaf


I love to cook. It’s the cleanup that makes me cringe, but that’s a whole ‘nother blog post.

I found this recipe in a cookbook years ago. The cookbook disappeared (probably during one of my manic cleaning episodes that occur only rarely these days) but I know this recipe by heart.

The resulting dish is a near-copy of a boxed “convenience food” you can find in any supermarket. You can make it for a fraction of what the boxed stuff costs.

Last week I made my own version of Spanish rice by reducing the amount of chicken broth by a half cup and adding a can of stewed tomatoes. My family loved it. You can also add garlic and onions to the recipe during the sauteing.

See what you can come up with!

Armenian Pilaf

There’s no reason to go to the market to pick up a box of¬† “the
San Francisco Treat”, as long as you have 4 simple ingredients
in your cupboard.

1/2 cup raw spaghetti broken into 1 inch pieces
3/4 cup raw white rice
One 14.5 ounce can broth or 1 3/4 cups of broth(chicken,beef or vegetable)
2 TBsp butter or margarine

Melt butter in medium-sized skillet or sauce pan over medium heat.¬† Add broken spaghetti. Saute’¬† spaghetti pieces in butter, stirring constantly until the spaghetti just begins to brown.
Add rice,  stirring until the rice is well coated with the butter and the spaghetti browns a little more (sound familiar so far?)

Reduce heat. Slowly and carefully pour in broth. When the liquid hits the hot butter there will be some splattering and sizzling. Return heat to medium. Simmer until liquid is absorbed.

Garlic and Herb Squash Casserole


I’m still trying to incorporate more vegetables into my family’s and my diet.

This is Garlic and Herb Squash Casserole is delicious.  My very picky son and vegetable-avoiding husband both had two helpings.

My three-year-old daughter even ate some of this. ¬† I’ve discovered if I let her help, she’s usually much more willing to try the dish. For this, I let her drop the vegetables in the bag and then add the (pre-measured) olive oil and spice mix. I sealed the bag, but let her shake it. Then she got to dump the coated veggies into the casserole dish.

This isn't a particularly good picture, but the casserole tasted great.

On to the recipe… See more…

There Once Was a Site Called LazyGourmets‚Ķ


Several years ago, I was the co-owner of a cooking and recipe website called LazyGourmets.com. It was great fun for about two years. We had thousands of newsletter subscribers and page-views in the tens of thousands every month.

After a time, the demands of running the site (keeping up with posting, moderating the message boards, testing recipes, responding to emails, etc, etc) began to overwhelm us both.¬† Then¬† hackers and spam-bots made us throw up our hands and say “Forget it!”¬† The site was allowed to wither and die.

So, LazyGourmets.com is no more, but I still have saved many of the newsletters, recipes and articles we used on the site.

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