Thursday, April 03, 2014

Catching up –

Bow Tie Pasta with Walnut Sauce (Yummy recipe will follow)

It’s been a while since I posted a recipe, yet with everything going on, I want you all to know I did cook and was able to take some photos….

So I survived the holidays,  I’m not sure if it’s only me, but the holidays beat me up each year – it’s true I am on a stress  level  that’s  not enjoyable.  The pressure starts around Halloween and lasts through New Year’s Day - yet I do what I can for everyone around me – oh they all hear the whining, and the sighs but those are covered-up quickly or just ignored. Ha!

We started our new year with our traditional Eggs Benedict and French toast breakfast…or brunch.

At the local beach, we cast our stones into the water.   

This year collectively  we want to read good, have good grades – be loved, stay healthy, have fun, be happy, succeed, feel peace; etc., etc. etc.

Honey BBQ Wings served on Super Bowl Sunday!

Yes, we had a Super- Bowl party just family came; it was fun!


We left the vast frozen land of the north east (btw I do notice Amelia not wearing her hat - just acting cool about it) and headed south to visit the Mother-In- law, brother-in law, sister-in-law and this little fellow.

 This is little Lucky!

Of course we missed our Teddy !

 We all thawed out, a bit!


…and relaxed

Visited some old friends

 connected as a family (a not so shameless selfie)

We have been back for some time now …still battling the cold long winter, going along our daily schedule, and now I’m fighting off an ear infection and a case of not sure what I want to write about…syndrome!

Oh, my gals and I had a girl’s night out; we call it feet and eat we went to a foot spa, got our feet and back massaged!  Oh how relaxing!

Then we went to a local pub; when I posted on Facebook where I was; guess who showed up?

Sista with her Mista! Another not so shameless selfie….

After dinner, my friends and I had this:


A Cronut …it was good (sorry no pics to share too much fun!)

Therefore, nothing much more to say…always busy; but busy at what…its life…right? We all do what we can! Let’s have fun doing it!!!!

Mangia, Mangia…No Talk!!!

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Here I am .... I'm back!!!

Here I am again!!!!!

Here is a quick explanation of what happened; on New Year’s Eve, I noticed that my posts, on both blogs did not have any pictures.  All my pictures were gone and replaced with a minus sign inside of a box.
My Bitstrip of me; the closest picture I had of what I felt like.

Huh? ….. Oh no! I thought I knew what happened right away – see the day before, I noticed that my Google account had added recent pictures that I took with my phone -  Huh I thought again; how did these get on my Google account I did not add them on the site?  I panicked and removed all the pictures on Google; even though my settings were set to private, I removed every single one of them.  I did not like that the pictures on my phone automatically linked onto my Google account without my doing.  Yet once I realized what had happened, which is, I think it has something to with URL addresses. Do you know that all your photos on your post have an URL address? Well I do now, and I think that once they are loaded onto the posts they are also stored on Google, without that link they can’t load onto the post.  Arrgh!  A cycle, huh!  I decided as long as the pictures on my Google account are set to private then it’s okay to leave them there….

So my next step was to try to restore all the deleted pictures back onto Google, thinking that the pictures would magically link to my blog posts that each picture belong to; well that did not work. 

So alas my only option was to reload all the pictures on each post, one post at a time.

It took me 12 weeks!!!

Last Week I finally completed fixing up my blog posts for Mangia, Mangia…No Talk and SquaareKat.

23 posts on SquaareKat and 64 posts on Mangia, Mangia…No Talk! 

 YAY!  Hip, Hip hooray!


Normally I am not a patient girl…there are things that I feel that are blood-clutching torture! Gardening being one of them; folding socks too and switching seasonal clothing! I guess what I’m trying to say, things that take a looong time.

Although this project felt like it dragged on – it was somewhat pleasant.

Yes, I had many silver linings,which are:

  •  The pictures that are on the posts are now grouped in individual folders named after the         post.
  •   All pictures reloaded onto its post have a watermark on it.
  •   All posts that have a recipe also have a print-friendly recipe button.
  •    Lastly, I got to see and enjoy all my past posts all over again.
 I was able to go down a memory lane.

I encourage you to do the same; here are some of my favorite posts: 

I Heart Garlic

Crumb-Cake Cupcakes

It should go without saying the posts that featured my grandparents top them all!  Yet I wanted to showcase some of the ones that were fun and special to me as well….

Please visit some of my past posts; and stick around for more… I have so much more to write and share with every one of you.   One last favor please, please talk …let me know what you think!  Leave me a comment and join the party!

Mangia, Mangia…No Talk!!!

Sunday, January 05, 2014

It’s over! Whew!

I have to say that on Christmas morning, my head was not on right!  It’s true, I was quite concerned about many things…

 Did the kids have a great Christmas?     

 Did we give them enough gifts?    
       Did we overdo it?  

My husband wanted to know what I wanted for Christmas this year and my answer was, “I want my kids to have a great Christmas!”

I got my wish!

We had a wonderful Christmas!
Christmas Eve was spent at my sister’s home…
…we had a wonderful time rejoicing in Christmas, we ate a spectacular Seafood feast and celebrated my nieces’ birthdays!
On Christmas Day I had my parents over, I made a fresh ham, wore my new Mangia, Mangia…No Talk apron that was given to me by a friend and co-worker.

How awesome is this apron?

Yet as I mentioned earlier, my head was in a fog, not sure why, but perhaps the holiday stress took a toll on me this year. I moved like a robot yet somehow I achieved what I needed to. I was not in the game; I know this because I forgot to take pictures of my feast and table.

Well, I did capture the appetizers and the before shot of the fresh ham.

Dad’s Seafood Salad!

Cured Black Olives
  Seasoned with minced/crushed garlic, red pepper flakes, and a couple of drops of extra virgin Olive Oil

Smoked mozzarella and Ricotta Salata cheeses.

Fresh Ham ready to be placed in the oven
On a bed of mirepoix seasoned with salt and black pepper, garlic cloves inserted all over
The ham was 16 lbs cooked on a low convection heat of 325 for about 5 1/2 hours; it was removed from the oven when the temperature was at 155 degrees   I covered it with tin foil, once the temperature was between 160-165 degrees it was carved and eaten.   My guideline was 20 minutes per pounds; I also basted this darling with chicken stock.  The juices were poured in a sauce pan,  I added a few dabs of gravy master, seasoned with a pinch of black pepper and a very tiny pinch of salt; (I tasted it first and felt it needed the salt and black pepper).  I continued simmering the gravy for a minute or two, and with an immersion blender, I blended and pureed the mirepoix into creamy gravy.

On a side note, on New Year’s Eve I noticed that all my pictures on my posts were gone…could it be Y2K or just a human mishap? Whatever it is, what is done is done. Therefore, slowly and surely I am re-uploading all my pictures accordingly.  Am I upset? Yes, a little bit …because I know why it happened; besides I can’t do any about it except reload the pictures one post at a time. The silver lining is that I can add watermarks to the pictures of the older posts; I am also inserting print friendly recipes as I go along…so if you are visiting and come across a post without pictures, don’t worry about it I will get to it eventually.

Mangia, Mangia…No Talk!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Ching e Ching Christmas is Coming!
We are in the final stages…
Christmas will soon be here
Who is excited?
Who’s nervous?                            
Who can’t wait for it to be over? 

The one thing I look forward to is our traditional Italian Christmas Eve Feast!  
Plus we need to listen to Dominick the Donkey! Enjoy!

What is a traditional Italian Christmas Eve Feast it is a seafood spectacular banquet (YAY!) … Many Italian families call it the feast of the seven fishes, in my family we never counted how many fish recipes were made. Therefore, we didn't call it the Seven Fishes Feast. We call it Christmas Eve. Quite honestly I am not sure why we eat fish on Christmas Eve, I always thought it was similar to following the Lenten rule during advent, and thought that as Catholics we are not supposed to eat meat on a holy day; I also read that it started so that one can attend midnight mass.  At this point I am not really sure and even though I attended Catholic school I now realize that I don't ever recall the nuns telling us not to eat meat during advent or on Christmas Eve. Having said all of that bottom line it's a tradition, that is what we do, and it is Seafood Yum!.

This year as in the past we will be at my sister‘s house; that is my second sister Claudia….we celebrate it at her house because we also celebrate my nieces birthday; yes they were born on Christmas Eve….

We always start out with my dad’s famous fish salad

Then we will have Spaghetti with vongole (clams)

The table will be filled with so many wonderful seafood dishes.  It’s a tradition and we all know how to pace ourselves and enjoy each bite.

Shrimp Scampi will probably be served

Fried Calamari definitely …oh my mouth ….I cannot wait!  

On the side, we will have a salad, broccoli rabe (maybe), potatoes (perhaps); but without a doubt mom will make these

Cardoons – have you ever tried them they are delicious - my mom makes these – read what Epicurious wrote about them I inserted below the pictures.

Only a culture that loves food could have come up with multiple techniques for cooking the cardoon—this thistle (a cousin of the artichoke that also tastes like one) with the texture of overgrown celery requires meticulous preparation. But the fact that Italians and Italian-Americans alike scour the markets for it come fall is evidence enough that it's worth it. A light coating and deep-frying really enhance the vegetable's subtle flavor.

These are not my pictures… my pictures and recipes of a sea faring culinary feast will follow!

Mangia, Mangia…No Talk!


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