Chicken Piccata

Several years ago a dear family friend visited a farm house in Italy, when she returned home she had something more valuable than a designer purse.  Instead, she possessed the perfect Chicken Piccata recipe. A savory combination of white wine, fresh lemon juice, capers, butter, and artichoke hearts make this dish simply fabulous.  It’s relatively uncomplicated and fun to prepare.  It’s my favorite dish for a cold winter night. While the recipe below serves 6 it’s extremely easy to double ingredients for a larger party.  Also, leftovers heat up perfectly for a day after meal!

Chicken Piccata

3 whole skinned boned chicken breasts, halved lengthwise

¼ cup flour

Salt & pepper

4 tbsp butter

1 package, sliced crimini mushrooms

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1 ½ cups Sauvignon Blanc wine – I recommend Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc

9 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice

3 tbsp flat leaf Italian parsley, coarsely chopped

1 container of capers (3.5 oz)

1 can of quartered artichoke hearts

To Cook Chicken Breasts:

Place chicken between two pieces of cling wrap and pound to ½ inch thickness. Sprinkle chicken breasts with salt and pepper and coat with flour. In a large skillet brown chicken in 3 tbsp of butter over medium heat for around 5 minutes or till lightly golden brown. Remove from skillet and keep warm.

Add remaining butter to hot skillet and cook mushrooms and garlic till tender. Add artichoke hearts and capers and simmer with wine and lemon juice. Simmer for around 5 minutes until the sauce has a sheen.  Add cooked chicken breasts back into the skillet and simmer for 5 more minutes. Add fresh chopped Italian parsley and simmer for 2 more minutes.

To Cook Pasta:

Fill large pot with one container of chicken broth, 2 bay leaves, a pinch of poultry seasoning, salt & pepper, and 1 cup of water. Bring to a boil. Cook pasta according to instructions. I recommend using a refrigerated fresh fettuccine pasta. Once cooked, drain it and squeeze a lemon on top and add a pat of butter.


On a large oval serving tray mound fresh pasta, then place chicken breasts and sauce on top of the chicken. Garnish with Italian parsley sprig.

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Tuesday Tip – Balsamic Caramelized Onions

Balsamic caramelized onioingredientsns…these three words make my tastebuds absolutely water in delight!  Nothing adds more punch to a turkey burger slider or more savory flavor to a goat cheese flatbread than these delightful little accompaniments! Put them on anything to pack a flavor punch, best of all they freeze so you can use them once you make them or store them in your freezer for when a seasoning need arises.

Today I’m sharing my favorite quick and easy recipe for balsamic caramelized onions.  For this recipe, you need – 4 sweet yellow onions, 1/4 stick of butter, 3 tablespoons white sugar, 4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (the more syrupy the better), and 2 teaspoons of kosher salt. IMG_7757

To start, slice all the onions into 1/4″ thick slices. Place a large skillet on the range and warm the pan to medium heat.  Place all the sliced onions in the skillet along with butter and salt.  Stir the onions occasionally, as the onions cook they will become more transparent. When the onions are almost transparent (approximately 15-20 minutes on the heat) add balsamic vinegar and sugar and continue cooking on medium heat.  The onions will IMG_7759take up the dark brown color of the balsamic vinegar. Continue to cook on the range until the onions are a uniform dark brown (another 5-10 minutes).  If at any time the onions begin to dry out just add a couple of tablespoons of water to keep them hydrated. Easy peasy!

Enjoy the fruits of your labor on cheese dishes, in omelets, or as a topper to slider burgers or flatbreads, you’ll love them and your guests will rave about them!


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Tuesday Tip – Triple Chocolate Brownie Bites

IMG_7671I LOVE brownies, I LOVE buttercream icing, & I especially LOVE Hershey’s Chocolate! Today I’m sharing this sinful little recipe for Triple Chocolate Brownie bites topped with Hershey’s buttercream icing. These bites are certain to satisfy!

For the brownies – you can make them from scratch….but my go to is the Betty Crocker Triple Chocolate Brownie Mix. I’ve found that the texture and flavor of this mix really can’t be beat.  Bake the brownies according to the instructions on the box. After the brownies are done baking, let them cool.  Once cooled, I like to use a cookie cutter to cut the brownies into little rounds or squares.

For the icing to kick these brownies into delish overdrive… I’m sharing with you my from scratch buttercream icing recipe. Admittedly I’m obsessed with icing, especially buttercream with plenty of powdered sugar and vanilla, and I’ve found pure and simple really tastes best!  First, set out a stick of unsalted butter and allow it to soften at room temperature. Whip the butter in your mixer.  Then slowly add 3 cups of powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract. Add a couple of tablespoons of milk to the icing mixture if the icing is too thick.

IMG_7669Now for the best part – adding the Hershey’s Chocolate. First melt the chocolate on the stove on low.  Once melted let the melted chocolate cool to close to room temperature.  Once cooled, slowly mix the chocolate into the icing.

After you’ve tasted the icing to make sure it is perfect, go ahead and spread the icing on the brownie bites. It’s always fun to embellish the brownies with Jimmies or sprinkles!  Enjoy!

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Tuesday Tip – Gem Class 101

What is a geode? What is an amethyst? What is an agate?  Do you ponder these all important questions??

Clients and friends often ask the difference between the raw materials we use in our products. So I’ve picked a few of our most commonly used minerals and am giving you an abbreviated geology lesson.

Embrace your inner rock hound and get ready to blow the Louboutins off your friends using your educated mineral lingo! Please refer to the picture to get an idea of what each of theFullSizeRender minerals look like.

1. Quartz – Quartz is pretty much the Mother Hen of minerals, trust me – this will make sense as you read the other mineral descriptions below.  It is a hard crystalline mineral made of silicon dioxide. Quartz is the most common mineral on Earth, making up 12% of the Earth’s crust by volume, and in its pure form is clear.  Quartz has a wide variety of applications including jewelry, scientific research, and manufacturing.

2. Amethyst – Amethyst is a variety of quartz that is distinguished by its purple color. The purple coloration is caused by oxidized iron.  The tone and saturation of color in an amethyst specimen determines its value.  The darker the purple color generally the more valuable the amethyst.

3. Agate – Agate is a type of micro-quartz called chalcedony that often appears in striking banded formation. Like other forms of quartz such as amethyst and clear quartz, its chemical makeup is silicone dioxide. Agate comes in a variety of natural colors and can also be dyed to be more vivid in color due to its porous nature.

4. Geode – A geode is a term that describes a rock containing a cavity lined with crystals or other mineral matter, typically with a rough and insignificant looking exterior.  Any number of crystals can from inside a geode, from smooth crystal such as an agate or more defined crystals such as amethyst.  HINT: An agate geode can be sliced into thin layers which we gold leaf and use as coasters!

This was definitely the short and sweet primer on some of our favorite minerals, I hope you feel like you are a little smarter than before after reading this tip! Stay tuned for another installment of Gem Class 101 so you can learn more about our beautiful minerals!

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Tuesday Tip – No Churn Ice Cream

ice cream 2Summer may be officially over, but here in big D the temps are hotter than ever!  In order to keep everyone cool with a chilly treat, I whipped up a batch of No Churn Ice Cream over the weekend and I have to say DELISH! A big hit will the kiddo & adults alike.

Before you get intimidated, don’t despair – this is such an easy recipe, only requires 3 ingredients, a rubber spatula, and a mixer.  The recipe is as follows:

Whip 2 cups of chilled whipping cream until stiff peaks are formed.  In the meantime in separate bowl, combine  1 can (14 oz) of ice cream 1condensed milk with 2 teaspoons of vanilla paste.  With a rubber spatula gently fold whipped cream into the condensed milk mixture in a freeze proof container (I used a glass loaf pan). Place foil over the top of the mixture and freeze until firm (about 6 hours). Lasts 1 week in the freezer.

Trust me your people will adore this sweet little something!  Place a scoop on a mini cone with sprinkles or if you happen to have any fresh late summer peaches around add a few slices to your bowl, yummo!


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Tuesday Tip – Summer Appetizer!

cayman shot

Addison & I cruising Grand Cayman!

Last week Addison and I went on a fabulous adventure to the Cayman Islands with 3 darling friends and their 9 children.  We were quite the crew!  From snorkeling to playing with starfish and laying in the sand it was a wonderful trip!

While on all these adventures we stumbled into a chic beachfront restaurant – Royal Palms.  And then it happened, we ordered the BEST, MIND-BLOWING appetizer (possibly of my life, no kidding) – goat cheese spread, cantaloupe, and serrano ham with wholegrain toast points. What made this dish so special was the goat cheese spread –  an amazing combination of green olives, capers, and currents. After sampling this tasty dish several times throughout the trip, I think I hacked the recipe.

Try this recipe at your next gathering, I promise it will delight!

– 1 Tuscan cantaloupe, made in into balls with a melonballer

– 3 tbsp green olives, sliced

– 2 tbsp capers, sliced

– 3 tbsp small currants, sliced

– Serrano Ham, 3 thin slices

– small goat cheese log

– 4 tbsp whipped cream cheese

– slices of rustic wholegrain bread cut in half, pan-fried with a bit of butter

–  juice of lemon to taste


Amazing Appetizer!

Combine the goat cheese, cream cheese, currants, capers, and olives in a bowl and stir till combined. Add lemon juice to taste.  Refrigerate the goat cheese spread for 30 minutes prior to serving to allow flavors to meld. Arrange the cantaloupe, ham, and toast points on a plate along with the spread. Serve and enjoy!

If you are ever on Grand Cayman make sure to stop by the Royal Palms and indulge in some fabulous fare!

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Tuesday Tip – Hawaiian Ham and Swiss Sliders!


Hawaiian Ham and Swiss Sliders

I still remember first tasting King’s Hawaiian Rolls…I was in Maui on my first “adult” post-college vacation with friends. We were limited on funds, so ended up surviving almost solely on King’s Hawaiian Rolls, guava jelly, and peanut butter for the entire trip! When we returned from the trip, much to our surprise practically EVERY grocery store in America carries these delightful rolls.

A few years ago I stumbled on a recipe for Hawaiian Ham & Swiss Sliders and after seeing King’s Hawaiian Rolls on the ingredient list I knew these little sammies would be a major hit! After a few tweaks and additions, here’s my recipe below.

Hawaiian Ham and Swiss Sliders


Spread the mustard mixture on the bottom layer of the rolls.

3/4 cup melted salted butter

1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1 1/2 tablespoons poppy seeds

1/4 cup brown sugar


Sandwiches with cheese and ham!

1/2 cup minced yellow onions, cooked until soft

2 packages King’s Hawaiian Rolls (12 rolls in each package)

1 pound thinly sliced Virginia or honey ham

1 pound thinly sliced baby Swiss cheese

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a bowl, mix together butter, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, poppy seeds, onions, and brown sugar.


    Sandwiches before cooking!

  3. Slice the entire package of Hawaiian rolls lengthwise. Separate the tops of the rolls from the bottom of the rolls.  Place the roll bottoms on a large piece of foil.
  4. Spread 1/3 of the mustard mixture on the roll bottoms.
  5. Layer ham and then the cheese on the roll bottoms. Place the roll tops on top of the cheese layer.
  6. Using a fork, pierce each of the roll tops gently.
  7. Spread the remainder of the mustard mixture on top of the rolls.
  8. Wrap the foil around the entire roll group and place on a disposable foil pan.
  9. Bake in the preheated oven until the rolls are lightly browned and the cheese has melted, about 30 minutes. Slice into individual rolls through the ham and cheese layers to serve.

Be warned, these little sammies will go fast!  Make more than you think you need and another tip, they make wonderful midnight snacks!


Sammie Time!

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