Bread. Yum. Bread seems to be on the outs with the food and nutrition world at the moment, and it is something my body really does better with in small quantities. However, fresh homemade bread – man is it good. Wintertime is a great time to bake and complement your stews, roasts, and soups …

I’ve been thinking of some truly awful metaphors to start this, my final contribution to the CG column, such as: It’s time to hang up my whisk, one last spin of the blender, the final dice. (This is me, pausing a moment to wait for the collective groan to subside. I really think I have a mut…

Summer is here at last! Everyone seems to kick into high gear with gardening and baseball and camping and fishing – when the midnight sun is shining, we just have to be out in it. After all, we earned some play time just for getting through last winter, right? Right! Today’s collection of re…

I am not sure I got the memo, did you? The one where "Household Hints" or "Kitchen Tips" are now known as "Hacks"? There seems to be a mountain of these things hitting my email lately – not that I'm complaining. Well, maybe I AM complaining, because I am always enthralled when I read these a…

Anyone who knows my family is well aware of the fact that we like food. In everything we do every day, we factor in food. Okay, so that’s pretty much normal with anyone. The wildly different variations of sustenance that decorates our lives tend to keep things interesting at times. As a fami…

We're just coming off Easter weekend, and I'm willing to bet lots of CG readers are dealing with the Ham Fatigue. You know what I mean. The big ham dinner on Easter includes all the trimmings and is just lovely. Cooks and power eaters are tickled that we can microwave leftovers for a day or …

We’re all looking toward Spring, and I can already hear those homegrown tomatoes and carrots and other good things calling my name – even though we have to wait a few months to enjoy them. We’re just now getting back our daylight and coming out of “hot and hearty” season – stews, casseroles,…

It took me several years to accept the truth that if I don’t follow a recipe, my soups are … well … lacking in flavor and palpability. I can wing a good chili and do a few tweaks here and there, but anything more than that, not so much. I also have the hurdle of a family full of soup skeptic…

It's August, and that means it's time for our annual Zucchini Fest of recipes here in the CG Test Kitchens. Did you celebrate "give away your extra zucchini" day on August 8th? (Me, either!) In the past week, the zukes have come on thick and strong around D-town – I saw some amazing examples…

It’s birthday week for the head chef here at the Carefree Test Kitchens, which means the truly kind hearted readers of this column will have to put up with my whims for what I believe are tasty treats for such celebrations.

Even though it’s still spring according to the calendar, most of us are in summer mode with the endless daylight, endless “to do” list, and endless potential for travel, parties, and guests. Cooking plays a large part in all these things, and anyone who knows their way around a whisk and a c…

I always have grand ideas of whipping up a casserole or three in my nonexistent spare time and tucking them in the freezer for days that I’m busy, tired, or just don’t feel like cooking. So far I’ve done this exactly three times in 32 years of marriage, so I’m not holding out hope that it’s …

Nothing comes to the dessert rescue better than a good old-fashioned bar cookie. They’re at the top of my list for lots of reasons: easy to put together, easy to bake, take, store, and serve. Most bar cookies freeze beautifully, and they’re great to toss in a backpack, too – what’s not to lo…

FA’ILTE!  (That’s “welcome” in Irish) We’re coming up fast on Saint Patrick’s Day – have you got your corned beef all ready to go? Whether you like a slow, all day simmer on the stove, or a set it and forget it routine in the crock pot, either way you’ll end up with tender and savory meat th…

I’ve been thinking of some truly awful metaphors to start this, my final contribution to the CG column, such as: It’s time to hang up my whisk, one last spin of the blender, the final dice. (This is me, pausing a moment to wait for the collective groan to subside. I really think I have a mut…

Summer is here at last! Everyone seems to kick into high gear with gardening and baseball and camping and fishing – when the midnight sun is shining, we just have to be out in it. After all, we earned some play time just for getting through last winter, right? Right! Today’s collection of re…

I am not sure I got the memo, did you? The one where "Household Hints" or "Kitchen Tips" are now known as "Hacks"? There seems to be a mountain of these things hitting my email lately – not that I'm complaining. Well, maybe I AM complaining, because I am always enthralled when I read these a…

Anyone who knows my family is well aware of the fact that we like food. In everything we do every day, we factor in food. Okay, so that’s pretty much normal with anyone. The wildly different variations of sustenance that decorates our lives tend to keep things interesting at times. As a fami…

We're just coming off Easter weekend, and I'm willing to bet lots of CG readers are dealing with the Ham Fatigue. You know what I mean. The big ham dinner on Easter includes all the trimmings and is just lovely. Cooks and power eaters are tickled that we can microwave leftovers for a day or …

We’re all looking toward Spring, and I can already hear those homegrown tomatoes and carrots and other good things calling my name – even though we have to wait a few months to enjoy them. We’re just now getting back our daylight and coming out of “hot and hearty” season – stews, casseroles,…

It took me several years to accept the truth that if I don’t follow a recipe, my soups are … well … lacking in flavor and palpability. I can wing a good chili and do a few tweaks here and there, but anything more than that, not so much. I also have the hurdle of a family full of soup skeptic…

Ready, set, grill! Is anything better than something cooked over charcoal or slow roasted over a low gas flame? From salmon to burgers to hot dogs to brisket, there are about a million things you can grill with very little experience or effort – it’s what goes along side the proteins that ca…