Slow-Cooker Almond Sour Cream Cheesecake

Cheesecake cooked in a slow cooker has an unbelievably silky texture because the machine steams the cake as it bakes. The toughest part about making it is resisting the urge to peek inside the slow cooker—the lid must stay closed to retain heat.

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Gringo Chili for a Crowd with Sour Cream Cornmeal Muffins

Sounds amazing, but the thick heat and meat stew called chili con carne, or chile with meat, is as American as apple pie. It is a traditional homespun dish displaying the qualities of creativity and originality of its cooks born and bred in the borderland desert of the U.S. and northern Mexico.

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Winter Corn Pudding


One year my mother asked me to bring a vegetable side dish for our family Thanksgiving. Wanting to do something new, I brought the ingredients for this ultra simple corn pudding, from Irena Chalmer’s little Holiday recipe book, and whipped…

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Cobb Salad

I have had many Cobbs in my life, since it is an all-time favorite salad. Cobb Salad was created in the legendary Brown Derby restaurant in Los Angeles (which was constructed like an oversized hut), and its patronage included old Hollywood from the 40s and 50s, and new Hollywood faces from the 60s and 70s.

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Chocolate Cake of the Month: Italian Cassata

Smack dab in the middle of the end of summer heat, you’re asked to make the dessert for a grand occasion sit-down dinner. Then there’s a dessert for the family picnic. Old friends drop in at 3 p.m. and they’re staying for dinner. So, what can you prepare and serve, yet never turn on the oven? A host of beautiful, well-presented desserts that start with store-bought pound cake. The best of which is a Cassata Siciliana.

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Creamy White Chicken Chili with Pumpkin Cornbread Muffins

Really this was dubbed the “The Best White Chili Ever” by my sister Meg, who loves anything and everything creamy. This is a mild chili and utilizes leftover cooked chicken or a store-bought rotisserie chicken. Its almost a no brainer, out of the cupboard meal.

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Old-fashioned Tea Party/Tea Sandwiches-1

A ritual that has come right up from the Victorian times into the 21st century with all its charm is the afternoon tea ritual. If you visit a grand hotel, elegant department store, museum, or café that has a sign advertising a “Tea Room” or “Salon de Thé,” you will be offered a formal Cream Tea, a little meal sandwiched between lunch and dinner.

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Chez Dining Room: Mount Athos Monastery and Spanakopita

The food of Greece is wholesome regional and seasonal peasant food. One of the main foods is the pitta, or savory pie. Vegetables of all types, olive oil, herbs, grains, the famous thick yogurt, feta cheese are wrapped in phyllo, Greek for leaf. Greek cuisine, influenced by both Eastern and Western cuisines is considered one of the healthiest on the planet.

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Slow Cooker: Spinach Pesto Deep Dish Pie with Homemade Ricotta-A Summer Family Treat

Italian pasta casseroles are probably some of the most popular family cooking in all cuisines. The king of these is lasagna. Turns out the slow cooker pasta casserole that translates perfectly from the standard oven method is lasagna. A whole book could be written just on slow cooker lasagnas.

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A Perfect Crumb Crust/Yogurt Cream Cheese Honey Pie with Amaretti Crumb Crust

While regular pie doughs are de rigeur in the baker’s kitchen, my first foray into pie baking some 30 plus years ago was a graham cracker crust for an ice cream pie or cheesecake. I would buy the box of Nabisco graham crackers, eat a few dipped into milk while working, and crush the squares of crisp aromatic crackers between sheets of waxed paper with a rolling pin.

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