Italian Lentil Soup


I AM SO COLD!

I don't know how else to put it!  We have had a lot of snow recently.  Not NEARLY as much as some places, but a lot for us.  And this cold.  It is so brutal.  When the weather is like this I will be honest with you, all I want is soup to eat.  However, soup is not always a hearty and filling as I want it to be.  Or is it?  When I want something that is going to fill my belly and warm my soul during these cold winter days, I turn to my delicious Italian Lentil Soup.  And with nutritious things such as lentils, Italian sausage, carrots, and kale, it not only warms my soul, but keeps my immune system boosted as well!  You are going to love this soup, and I can't wait to share it with you!

Let's get started!

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Roasted Truffle & Parmesan Fingerling Potatoes

Roasted Truffle and Parmesan Fingerling Potatoes

Yesterday I mentioned that chicken is America's go-to protein, and if chicken is our go-to protein, then potatoes are our go-to side dish.

I love potatoes.  I really do.  I like them mashed, boiled, fried, baked, roasted, you name it, I love it.  But sometimes potatoes can get a little monotonous.  That is why, when I can, I like to do little things to dress them up.  For example, while I was in Virginia Beach this past January I ate at this FANTASTIC place called Eurasia Cafe and they served these absolutely decadent Truffle Parmesan Rries with the most succulent NY Strip I have ever had.  I was instantly in love, and I knew I needed to recreate them, in some way when I got home!  That is when I went into Trader Joe's and saw these adorable "Teeny Tiny Fingerling Potatoes".  In that moment I knew they would be perfect for this recipe.

These potatoes are DIVINE and I can't wait to share them with you!  Let's get started!

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Lemon Pepper Chicken

Lemon Pepper Chicken

Where would the American home cook be without chicken?  Whole chicken, fryer chicken, skinless chicken, boneless skinless.  I would be willing to say that 4 out of the 7 nights a week you will find chicken on the table.  That's why I am ALWAYS on the lookout for quick, simple, but flavorful chicken recipes.

I love Lemon Pepper Chicken.  I will confess that, in the past, I would just season the chicken breast with some lemon pepper seasoning, fry it up in the pan, and call it done, but one day I was out of seasoning and I thought "There has to be a way to do this without the powder."  So I went to my pantry to see what I could come up with.  The result was DELICIOUS, and it couldn't be easier!  I can't wait to share it with you so let's get started!

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Stuffed Shells

Stuffed Shells

The weather in our area has been crazy.  One day it will be sub-zero temperatures, with tons of snow and ice, and the next day it will be 60 degrees and sunny.  No wonder half of the Mid-Ohio Valley is down with the flu.  I have been lucky enough to escape the flu bug, but I HAVE been battling a nasty little sinus infection.  All I have wanted to do is curl up with blankets and sleep, but alas, we've got to eat.  It is in times like these that I am all for using shortcuts to create great meals.

One such meal in my house are my Stuffed Shells with Italian sausage, spinach, and ricotta.  They are super simple, can be assembled in no time, and are assured to be loved by all!

I can't wait to share it with you so let's get started!

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Momma T's Famous Fudge

Fantasy Fudge

So here we are, the 13th of February, and it is the last post of my Choc-o-Palooza.  It has been a rough week, but I have pressed through, for you, my precious, precious readers.

Oh who are we kidding!  It has been a great week!  An ENTIRE week of CHOCOLATE!  No one in this house has been complaining I assure you!  And I have saved the best for last!


This is my mom, Teresa.

She is also known as Teesie, Momma T, Mamaw, Mother, etc.  Growing up there was one special treat that people went CRAZY over, and that was her fudge.  During the holidays, as a child, I remember standing over our stove, stirring, stirring, stirring, ENDLESS batches of this fudge.  People would PAY my mom to make it for them.  It is one of those recipes that has been embedded into my psyche, but it is OH SO GOOD!  Forget the box of candies this Valentine's Day.  You need to get into the kitchen and whip up this amazing fudge and I am going to show you how!

Let's get started!

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Crockpot Peanut Cluster Candy


Has this been a great week or what!?!

I know for me it has, and I KNOW it has for Studhubs!  (He thanks you all for this by the way.)  We have chocolate on every counter of my kitchen, and the hits just keep on coming! Today I am going to share one of my very favorite candies, peanut clusters.  Now I have to said more than once that I do not do fussy.  When it comes to candies and baking, I like it easy These candies could not be any simpler.  Why?  Because you are going let your crock-pot do all of the work!  YES! No standing there, constantly stirring.  No double boilers.  You are just going to dump and go!  It is that easy!

I can't wait to share this amazing sweet treat with you, so let's get started!

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For the Love of Chocolate Cake


 Chocolate cake.

I'm pretty sure I could stop right there and those two words would say it all, but this For the Love of Chocolate Cake, oh my, it is taking things to a whole other level.  I first experienced this cake at a church dinner many years ago.  The lady who brought it told me how to make it, but as with most things that I don't immediately write down, I forgot about it.  Then I was going through some recipes I found in my mom's recipe box and I stumble across it again!  I was so excited that I made it that night, and sure enough it was just how I remembered!

This cake is truly decadent and it could NOT be easier!  I can't wait share it with you so you can share it with your special someone this Valentine's Day!

Let's get started!

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Studhub's No Bake Peanut Butter Bars


This week I have decided to change it up a little on the blog.

Since it is the week before Valentine's Day, I am going to focus my kitchen energies on all things chocolate!  This came about when Studhubs (aka my husband John) asked me if he could play in the kitchen on Saturday.  I said "Only if you photograph it and do a guest post on my blog."  He agreed and the rest will be Kitchen Wife history!  *lol*

(John's kitchen pose of choice LOL)
Now a lot of wives would be scared if their husbands wanted to play in the kitchen, but if the truth were to be told mine is actually a decent cook.  He has made several things for me in the past, all of which have been delicious!  So from here on in I am stepping aside and giving all control to John and his No Bake Peanut Butter Bars!  You are going to love them!
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Poor Man's Vegetable Beef Soup

Poor Man's Vegetable Beef Soup_Title

What a wild and crazy weekend!

I don't even remember what I did Friday, but I DO know that Saturday was emotional to say the least.  If you follow me in Facebook, you know that my husband and I got our first smoker recently.  To christen our smoker we decided to smoke a Boston butt or pork shoulder.  I researched this thoroughly and read the instructions more than once.  I felt prepared and educated going in, but sometimes all the education and preparedness in the world can't help you.  Long story short.  We still have some learning to do, but the end result was TASTY!  Of course Sunday was the Super Bowl.  We had friends over and a buffet of yummy football goodness.  It was a great weekend!

However, here we are at Monday.  I am tried, and I don't feel like cooking a big heavy meal.  Not to mention it is COLD out there.  So I decided to hit my pantry to see what I come up with.  After perusing over my stock pile, I was reminded of this soup they used to make the children at one of the Early Learning Centers I used to work with.  It was a vegetable beef soup made with ground beef.  I was inspired so today I am going to share with you my version of this Poor Man's Vegetable Beef Soup!  It is quick, easy, inexpensive, and PERFECT for these cold winter nights!

I can't wait to share it with you, so let's get started!


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