Comfort Food and Easy Entertaining

As a private chef, caterer and cooking instructor I am often asked "What do you enjoy cooking when you're at home on a weeknight or entertaining guests at your table?" I started this blog to answer that question. Here I will share with all of you the recipes that I find delicious and comforting. Many of the recipes are my own versions of classic dishes, some are contemporary twists on old ideas, and some are discoveries I made while perusing my grandmother’s vast collection of cookbooks dating back to the early 1900’s. Please enjoy these videos. I have also included links to some of the published articles I have written recently. Please feel free to comment here or email me directly with any questions, comments or general thoughts. My email address and information on my catering, private chef and private cooking classes can be found on my website:

Creamy Ranch Tomatillo Sauce, Black Beans, Cilantro-Lime Rice

Creamy Ranch Tomatillo Sauce

makes 6-8 servings
1 Cup uncooked Rice (long-grain, white rice)
1 tsp. butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
1 cup chicken broth (better then bouillon)
3/4 cup water
1 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
2 tsp. sugar
3 Tbsp. fresh chopped cilantro

In a saucepan combine butter and garlic over medium-high heat.  Allow butter to melt and sauté garlic until fragrant, about 4 minutes.  Add rice and stir to combine.  Add lime juice, stock and water.  Bring to a boil and cover pot.  Turn heat to lowest setting and set timer for 20 minutes.  After 20 minutes do not remove lid.  Turn off heat and keep covered for 5 minutes.

Remove lid and add lime juice, sugar and cilantro.  Stir to combine and serve.

Black Beans

makes 6-8 servings

2 Tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp cumin
2 (15 oz cans) black beans, drained and rinsed
Approx 11 oz tomato juice
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 Tbsp cilantro, minced

In a saucepan over medium-high heat add olive oil.  Stir in garlic and cumin and sauté for 4 minutes.  Add beans, tomato juice, and salt.  Stir and cover for about 10 minutes.  Once the beans are heated through they are ready to serve.  You may remove the lid and continue to simmer for a drier consistency.

Creamy Ranch Tomatillo Sauce

makes 1 quart

1 packet Hidden Valley Ranch mix (NOT BUTTERMILK)
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup mayonnaise
2 tomatillos, remove husks, diced
1/2 bunch cilantro
2 cloves garlic
juice of 1 lime
1 jalapeño

Mix all ingredients in a blender.  Process until well blended.

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