Fried Nutella Pies

This post is LONG overdue. I made Fried Nutella Pies on one of my last nights in Chicago, while I was sitting at home bored. I had spent the day packing and running errands, so when I was got home I didn’t have anything to do until my friends got home from work. While I was waiting on Laura to get home so we could head to my final going away party with some friends at Club Lucky (I highly recommend making a stop if you’ve never been), I decided to make these yummy looking Fried Nutella pies and Peanut Butter Nutella cookies (post to come soon)!

I had some food I needed to get rid of before the move and Nutella was one of the ingredients! I found the recipe on Our Best Bites and was excited to give it a try. I didn’t have all of the ingredients, but I had some things I thought would work as a substitute. They turned out pretty good once I got the frying thing down.

Fried Nutella Pies (adapted from Our Best Bites)

Pillsbury Pie Crust (I didn’t have wonton wrappers – but I did have pie crusts I needed to get rid of!)

Nutella

Craisins

Cinnamon and Sugar (mixed)

Peanut Butter

Chocolate Chip

Coconut

frying oil

Let the pie crusts sit out until they are at room temperature. Fill a bowl with cinnamon and sugar and mix. Set aside the bowl (near the stove) for dipping the “pies” once they are fried.

Cut the pie sheets into small squares and fill them with a small bit of Nutella and any other ingredients you want. I added craisins to some, peanut butter to a few and to be honest, I can’t remember what else I used, but I know I pretty much cleaned out my pantry of sweet stuff. I just put Nutella on all of the pies and then made some with chocolate chips and peanut butter, some with just craisins, some with coconut, etc.

In a large frying pan, heat the oil, but make sure it doesn’t get too hot or the pies will burn. Remember the Kitchen Adventure I had with Caprese Wontons? Once the oil is hot enough, begin folding the pies together and adding to oil. Fry until the outsides are golden brown and then immediately add to the cinnamon and sugar mixture.

My first few attempts didn’t go over so well. The pies were falling apart and getting stuck in the cinnamon and sugar mixture. I figured out that the oil wasn’t hot enough and the pies weren’t really frying, so I turned up the heat and let the oil get hotter before I added the pies.

After a few attempts they turned out pretty good – and didn’t taste bad either! They weren’t my favorite dessert, but they were definitely something different and they were fun to make. I love anything with cinnamon and sugar on them, so they got my approval!

Up next: Peanut Butter Nutella Cookies

xoxo,

Lucia

Banana Bread

Where has this summer gone? Oh yea, it just started here in Chicago! I haven’t posted in a while, but I’ve still been cooking and having adventures in all kinds of kitchens! The summer started off to a great start, so I thought. I couldn’t wait to head home to Indy for the Italian festival in June. Ryguy had just gotten home from Europe so I was not only going to get to see my family, but finally spend time with him! Long story short, I got to Indianapolis and instantly felt sick. I was lucky enough to make it to the festival Friday night, but honestly, I couldn’t enjoy it because I felt so miserable. Ryguy definitely enjoyed himself though and I’m pretty sure he tested food at every booth, which is a good thing because we didn’t make it Saturday night and got stuck staying in with a no fun, sick girl watching movies! Here are a few pictures of some of the delicious food I remembered to take this year.

Breadsticks

Cheesecake

Before I left for the Italian festival I was so anxious to finally see Ryguy and get home to my family and I couldn’t sit still. Whenever I’m anxious, nervous or stressed, all I want to do is cook. For some reason, it calms my nerves and really allows me to think clearly. Maybe this is because it takes me out of my head and allows me to just be in the moment – in the food – which is what I need sometimes! So, while I was waiting for my fun-filled (or so I thought) weekend, I baked Banana Bread! I didn’t have a family recipe for this (that I know of, hint hint Mom!) so I used the cookbook, Baking, my sister gave me last year as a present for my blog! I didn’t have all of the below ingredients and kind of just went on my own with this one – and it didn’t turn out the BEST, but it was still good and I enjoyed them, but I am going to share the actual recipe below!

Banana Bread

Ingredients:

Butter, for greasing

1 cup flour

3/4 cup light brown flour

Pinch of salt

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

2 large ripe bananas, peeled

3/4 cup orange juice

2 eggs, beaten

4 tbsp canola oil

Preheat the oven to 350°. Lightly grease a 2-lb loaf pan. Sift the flours, sugar, salt and the spices into a large bowl.

In a separate bowl, mash the bananas with the orange juice, then stir in the eggs and oil. Pour into the dry ingredients and mix well.

Spoon into the prepared loaf pan and bake in the preheated oven for 1 hour; then test to see if the loaf is cooked by inserting a skewer (I use a knife or toothpicks) into the center. If it comes out clean, the loaf is done. If not, bake for an additional 10 minutes and test again.

Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan. Turn the loaf out, slice and serve! This recipe serves 8.

(Sorry for the awful quality of this photo!)

The banana bread wasn’t my best, but I was glad to finally attempt making one of my favorite breads! Stay tuned for adventures of an Italian out west and one of my new favorite recipes!!

Girl and the Goat, Girl in the City

I like to believe I have self-control, strong will power, determination, endurance, motivation….the ability to stick with something longer than a few weeks. I mean, I started this blog over a year ago and continue to stick to making new recipes and learning to be a better cook. I think in some aspects of my life I display some of those characteristics, but sticking to diets and eating healthy is an area where I fail on all counts. Not one of those words describes my behavior or my characteristics when it comes to sticking to a healthy, or shall I say healthier lifestyle.

Yes, you may have guessed it, but I failed at the South Beach Diet. I did really well for over a week, but the socialite in me beat down the “wanna be skinny bitch” in me and I caved. I just don’t have the self-control or will power to turn down a night on the town with my friends or having a few cocktails at a wedding. And once I cave, there is no going back. I mean, I live in Chicago where drinking and eating are more than just past times, they are a way of life here and keep you from jumping into lake Michigan in the winter. So, that was the end of the South Beach Diet attempt. Maybe I will try it again. I felt great and my energy was up without all the booze and the carbs, but I was also super bitchy because I don’t like being hungry. End of story.

You may think I have this lovely pig picture up due to my lack of self-control and not sticking to my diet, but that is no the case. The pig face is here because that is what I ate for dinner last night. It’s nights like last night that prove my point above. It is impossible to stick to a diet in this city because at every turn there is an opportunity to experience something very cool and you just can’t turn it down. Life is too short. My friend made reservations at Girl and the Goat months ago and it is nearly impossible to get in. We tried to change our reservations and the next available night was in September. The menu is always changing and it’s just overall a really cool experience. If you have been reading my blog (and I hope someone is) you will know I have slowly started to grow out of my picky eater habits. I will no longer allow anyone in my life to call me a picky eater because not many people can say they have tried pig face. It wasn’t gross either. Actually, it was good. I also tried the Escargot Ravioli and although the thought of it makes me squirm today, it tasted like a mushroom and it was really good.

Pig Face

Pig Face at Girl and the Goat

I have not had time to be in the kitchen lately, which is something I find to be sad, but I’ve been busy attempting to be healthy and staying away from my one true love, pasta. It’s been a tough few months and it is one of my harder breakups I’ve gone through, but I am hoping one day I can rekindle the romance. Once the gym and I get a better understanding of each other, hopefully I can find a good balance between the two. Until then, it’s my sisters type of pasta (the multi-color healthy kind that makes me think “ick”, but it’s edible). She is a “skinny bitch” so I am trying to adopt some of her lifestyles. This veggie pasta is currently one of them.

Speaking of my break up with pasta…The Holy Rosary Italian Festival is this weekend and I have a feeling I am going to have a rebound. Everyone goes back a few times after a breakup anyway, right? I think it’s allowed. I will be eating all kinds of pasta this weekend and I won’t feel bad about it. Well, I will, but if I just let Ryguy (I think that’s what I will call him here from now on) buy all the food and I take bites off his, it won’t really count. Stay tuned for some highlights of my true Big Fat Italian Life back in Indy – it’s where the Italian magic happens. Hopefully this year I will remember to actually take pictures of the food!

Phase One, Day 3 – Spicy Turkey Burgers

With summer quickly approaching I decided it was time to take the “Fat” out of “My Big Fat Italian Life.” It’s not that I’m fat, because I’m not, but I want to start feeling better about myself and overall, healthier. I joined a gym again and decided to start the South Beach Diet. I started almost two weeks ago and by the first Friday I was still doing OK, but for a girl who eats a lot of carbs (and I mean a lot), this has been a shock to my system. My dad even asked me if I was going through withdraw symptoms because I am a carb addict. During Phase one on the South Beach diet you also have to cut out all alcohol and fruit from your diet. The fruit I can handle. The alcohol has been a challenge as being social in Chicago pretty much requires drinking. So, in response I have holed myself up in my apartment and plan to do so until I complete phase one.

I was worried that I would get bored with the food I was allowed to eat in phase one, but after making these Spicy Turkey Burgers, my attitude changed. I decided this was actually going to be fun and something I could incorporate into my blog! I altered the original recipe a bit, as I didn’t have all of the ingredients, and they were still delicious! I even froze a few and had them for dinner a few days later.

Phase One Spicy Turkey Burgers

South Beach Diet Phase One Spicy Turkey Burger

Ingredients:

1 tbsp cumin
1 dash pepper
1 dash salt
3 tbsps olive oil
1 1/4 lbs ground turkey
1/2 cup chunky salsa
3 tsps hot sauce

Mix ground turkey (lean if available), 1/2 cup mild or medium chunky salsa,  3 tablespoons oil, hot sauce, cumin, salt, and pepper in large bowl. Shape turkey mixture into four 3 1/2 to 4″ diameter patties on wax paper. Heat cooking spray in large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add burgers; cook until brown, about 3 minutes per side. Do not move around burgers until they have browned or they will fall apart. Reduce heat to low. Cover pan and sauté burgers for 2 minutes. Cover and sauté until burgers are cooked through  – another 2 minutes.

The picture of the turkey burger may not look that delicious, but trust me, it was. I was so glad I came across this recipe and not just because it helped to get me through the first week without carbs. It was delicious. I can’t wait to make these again and I will even recommend that my family and friends make these even while they are not on the South Beach diet! They were that good. I can’t even imagine how they would have tasted with cheese, ketchup and a bun!

Stay tuned for more yummy South Beach diet recipes! I promise, as soon as I am back to my “normal” self, the yummy pasta recipes will be back! Life is all about a healthy balance…and I’ve been off kilter for a little too long!

Page Family Meat Pie

While I was home for Easter I got to spend that Saturday with my mom and my cousin Concetta cooking, laughing and just having a fun girls day. When I woke up Saturday morning, it was to my favorite smell in the world, my mom’s spaghetti sauce! I told her that I hope heaven smells like her sauce and she laughed at me. She might have been laughing at the fat girl who is inside of me, or maybe she was just flattered. I will choose to go with the latter. Her sauce not only smells delicious, but it reminds me of home. It reminds me of my childhood, of my Grandparents house for Sunday dinners and our Thursday night pasta dinners we had growing up. It reminds me of family and is always equated with good memories and most of all, love. I may just love to eat pasta, but honestly, there is more to it. There is a history that I enjoy “coming home to” every now and then.

While the sauce was cooking, I decided to make something of my own. I had come across a recipe in a family cookbook for a meat pie that was my Grandpa’s family recipe and thought it would be the perfect addition to my family recipe collection. It turned out great (I did a little altering though!) and I got the seal of approval from my Grandpa and his sister, my Aunt Marie, who happens to be the “Meat Pie Queen.” It was actually her recipe I used, so thank you for sharing Aunt Marie!

Page Family Meat Pie

Ingredients (makes 2 pies)

3 lbs ground beef

1 large onion, chopping finely

2 tbsp olive oil

2 tsp ground sage (taste before using all the sage)

5 potatoes

2 pie shells

1/2 cup milk

1/2 stick of butter

Peel potatoes and finely chop onion. Add the potatoes to a large pot of salted water and bring to a boil. In a large skillet, heat oil and add beef and onion. Season with sage, salt and pepper. Once the beef is cooked, set aside to cool. Then, once the potatoes are fully cooked, remove and put into a mixing bowl. Add the milk and butter and mash. Be sure to leave some chunks in the potatoes. Mix with the beef and add to the pie shell.

Once the mixture is in the pie shell, spread some melted butter to the top of the pie in order to make the pie shelly crispy and to get a golden brown color.

Preheat the oven to 350° and bake for 45 minutes to an hour. Slice and enjoy!

I had dinner plans that night to go to my Uncle Hank’s Italian restaurant in Indy, Amici’s, so I wasn’t able to enjoy the pie for dinner, but luckily my Uncle Phil stopped by for a visit and had dinner with my parents.

It’s been a pretty busy spring and I have been really bad about posting, and just as bad about cooking. It’s sad, but it really is hard to find the time to get to the grocery store and make the time to actually cook something! I was at a wedding last weekend though, and had some of the BEST food I’ve ever had. I ate so much my dress barely fit by the end of the night!

It was such a fun weekend! We had a great girl’s getaway and spent the weekend gambling, eating, laughing and dancing the night away to celebrate Leah and Rob’s wedding!

Italian Adventures around Chicago

The Italian Expo was in Chicago this past weekend, so my Grandparents, parents, and my Aunt all came into town to check it out! They took a bus down with the Indianapolis Italian Heritage Society and stayed at a hotel downtown. I was beyond excited they were coming, not only because I missed them, but because they would get the chance to see where I am living and a glimpse into my life here in Chicago! They aren’t exactly thrilled that I live away from home, so it was nice for them to see how great it is here and how close it really is….just a bus ride away!

I met them downtown on Saturday morning and we all walked over to Navy Pier for the expo. It was a pretty nasty morning out and it was a little rainy, but we still decided to walk and enjoy the city. We weren’t exactly sure what to expect, but it definitely was not what I had imagined. There were no decorations, everything was plain and there were no activities. You just walked in a big square from table to table. The only good part about it was the food sampling, but I wasn’t exactly hungry for Pasta at 11:30 AM. OK, that’s a lie, I am always hungry for pasta, but I felt guilty indulging mid-day. My phone was still broken at this point in the day, so I didn’t snap any photos, but there really wasn’t anything to show you, so no worries!

That night we enjoyed a nice dinner at Phil Stefani’s steak house, 437 Rush. After dinner we went to the Signature Lounge in the John Hancock building, on the 96th floor. I had never been there and was really excited to do something “touristy” in the city! My cousin Nick is like a walking Chicago information handout, so he knew all about it, including the most random facts all about Chicago, and I mean ALL about it. There would be a random building on the side of a road and he would know what the history was.

Sunday morning my family and I went on an adventure around Chicago in search of all things Italian! Our first stop was at D’amato’s bakery and Bari, an Italian grocery. They were both old Italian establishments here in Chicago and were very cool. I love being able to walk into a grocery and see all of the amazing foods I was able to enjoy in Italy right HERE in Chicago!

After traveling to D’amatos and enjoying some filled cookies we ventured on over to Taylor Street, which is where Little Italy is located. It was so unfortunate to see how much it has changed. It definitely does not resemble a little Italy, but we did get to enjoy lunch together at the original Rosebuds! It was a little chilly out, but it was a gorgeous Fall day so  we decided to sit outside. My Grandpa, per usual, ordered the calamari for an appetizer. I used to be such a picky eater (I still have my issues, but am a lot better!), but my Grandpa convinced me to try calamari one random night and I realized how much I LOVE IT!! Fried deliciousness. I can even eat the kind with tentacles.

Speaking of tentacles, my Dad and I enjoyed staring at the baby octopus on our final Italian adventure around Chicago when we traveled to Caputos in Elm Wood Park. I didn’t get a picture with my phone, but I think my Dad did. Unfortunately I do not have it -so I will spare you the visual. Anyway, he told me how his Grandmother, who was from the Calabria region in Italy, used to make stuffed octopus for dinner. I’m not talking about little tiny octopus. This thing was huge. The thought of it made me extremely happy that he did not acquire a taste for that cuisine growing up!

I love the grocery store and could have spent an entire afternoon at Caputo’s. I must get that from my Grandpa because I think going to Caputo’s was what he was most excited about the entire weekend! Hopefully I can go back soon and pick up supplies for my next kitchen adventure. They had an ENTIRE aisle dedicated just to pasta. Literally, my heaven. I was proud to say that I only walked out with one item and that was only to come home and provide Laura with a good laugh. I came across this chocolate roll that I had completely forgotten about eating while we were in Italy. I am sure it has an equivalent here in America, but since we ate anything and everything while in Italy, this chocolate/sweet roll was among our favorites. I must have blocked it out of my memory, because I completely forgot about ever eating anything like this. Anyway, I had to buy it for her. Good thing it has been over 2 weeks and it isn’t gone yet….we are making progress in self-control!

This past weekend I did not have any kitchen adventures, but I did have a pretty big adventure in my life! I decided to run a 5k this past Saturday for The Race for the Cure! I was so proud that not only did I finish the race, I ran the entire 3.1 miles without stopping (3.1 miles in 32 minutes isn’t too shabby since I can’t remember the last time I ran more than 2!). It was so much fun that I have already signed up for two more marathons! As my sister said, it’s time to grow up, so last weekend I chose BOOBS over BOOZE and spent my Saturday morning feeling great, energized and running (instead of in bed!).

From Italy to Chicago

Hello all!  I am sorry I have not had the chance to share my cooking adventures with you, but life has been fairly crazy the last few months! I moved into a new apartment and work has been pretty busy…I will share with you all the hard work that has been going on once everything calms down. Also, my sister is getting married next weekend and I have been trying to avoid the kitchen in all honesty…I can’t wait for the wedding and to share all of the pictures and GREAT food from the big day, but for now all I can share with you is a preview of what is yet to come.

I moved in with my best friend and my Italian partner in crime. We spent 4 great months together in Italy and I am excited that we will get to cook together (well, she can enjoy my cooking). But her 25th birthday is on Sunday, so I am treating her to an Italian feast. I am planning on making Lasagna and Tiramisu to celebrate her accomplishment of being a quarter of a century old!! Happy early birthday Laura – I can’t wait to celebrate this weekend and have an Italian reunion in our new kitchen!

Here is a picture of our kitchen in Florence. Our new kitchen is not as cute as this petite red kitchen and it does not include our washing machine next to the stove, but it is just as homey and will include just as many good meals as this one did, just not as often!

Holy Rosary Italian Street Festival

With much regret, I have to say that with all of the excitement, work, and fun going on during the Italian festival, I got really distracted and forgot to take pictures of the most important part…the food!  Friday was a pretty hectic day, considering it took me forever to try to get out of Chicago.  The Hawks had just won the Stanley Cup and the city was going crazy.  There were millions of people outside my office building all day and all the streets around me were closed off.  I made it to the bus stop with about 3 minutes to spare – only to encounter problems with a bus driver who did not want to let me on the bus!  Good thing I know how to get my way…he finally let me on so I could make it home in time for the festival!

A few of my cousins and my sister during the festival!

I know I can’t share with you what the food at the festival looked like, but I can tell you all about what I ate and everything the festival had to offer.  Friday night, I must admit, I was too busy enjoying many Peronis to eat anything, but I did try a bite of a breadstick (amazing as always) and some fettuccine.  I try the fettuccine every year (I’ve never not tried it for as long as I can remember), and it is always, without fail, satisfying.  I was very proud of myself though for not tasting any of the desserts (when you are looking at them all night, it’s hard to resist the urge to take a few bites of heavenly chocolate or my all time favorite, cheesecake).

A few desserts served at the festival – Lemon Cake and Chocolate Mousse

Saturday night was a different story. I gave in to all of my urges and just went for it.  I had tortellini in a red sauce, tried some vegetable lasagna, fried ravioli, pizza, breadsticks, and a new addition to the food line up, not sure what they are called, but they were fried balls stuffed with mushrooms, spinach and artichokes.  They were ok – but my favorite of the entire night was the vegetable lasagna and for dessert a Cannoli (if you have never had one of these before, I suggest you find one at an Italian bakery and indulge!!).  Before you start judging me and the amount of food I consumed, realize that I only took a few bites of all of these things.  With my large family holed up in a tent all night, there is a plethora of food around!  I only ate a small bowl of the tortellini on my own – that I was not willing to share!

My Dad, Grandpa, Brother and Cousins – All enjoying the storm under the tent!

Overall, the festival was a great time.  The rain did try to put a damper on the weekend, but Italians never let anyone or anything rain on their parade!  Saturday night, when the rain started to come down around 9:00PM, most of the people left or headed for shelter inside the church.  The parking lot was almost empty, except for one tent. The Pastry stand. As I headed down the street to help cleanup, I saw my Grandfather, standing inside the tent, surrounded by a mass of people, selling as many pastries as he could.  Now that is dedication.  It was thundering and lightening outside, but my Grandpa wasn’t going to stop until he did everything he could to make money for the Church. There are very few people in this world who have as much heart, dedication, and a sense of hard work as my Grandpa.  He is a true role model, a wonderful man, Grandfather, Dad, and an even better Italian.  Although we didn’t make as much money as last year, due to the weather, the Festival was, as usual, a great time and made a lot of money for the Church.

Me and my Grandpa – serving Cannoli’s at 11PM in the rain!

Rain or shine, the Italian Street Festival will always be one of my favorite weekends of the year.  It is so much more than a festival, to me and to many other people who volunteer away their weekend, who get to spend quality time with loved ones, and who are able to make great friends.  Sometimes we can view it as a burden, but when it is all said and done, and you look back on the weekend, it has to put a little smile on your face.

I apologize for the lack of food, but this is a major part of my Big Fat Italian Life, so I hope you enjoyed a glimpse of life as an Italian!

Food Extravaganza

“Other things may change us, but we start and end with family.”― Anthony Brandt

I came across this quote and I wanted to share it.  Of everything I know, this quote is something I know to be 100% true.   No matter what, no matter where, no matter when, family should be at the core of you.  This is definitely a quote I try to live my life by, and I hope you all take a minute to appreciate your family today!

Last weekend I spent some time with my parents and on Saturday we went to the NRA Food Convention here in Chicago.  My Dad was helping out a friend, so my mom and I met him there for the end of the day.  We got to try some really good food…not healthy food, but good and saw some really cool companies!  I tried to hold off on the free samples considering we had a big dinner planned at Cibo Matto, but it was certainly hard to resist.  On the plus side, I was finally inspired for my sisters shower I am helping to plan with my aunts and came up with some great ideas for favors and table decorations. Below are a couple of photos I took at the convention.  The pickles picture was taken specially for Alyssa…

I loooove Gelato, so I couldn’t resist 🙂

Cibo Matto was a really good restaurant, but it was unanimous that we liked the wine more than the food.  I ordered the carbonara, and while it was really good, I must brag that mine tasted just as good, if not better.  I know I am biased, but I’m just throwing that out there.  Everything else we ate was good…but not amazing.  It could be because my parents are food snobs (in a good way) and I walked away happy, yet not ecstatic.  We went  to the Cheesecake factory for dessert because it was close to their hotel and my Dad wanted cheesecake.  Good thing we shared a piece between the three of us because the Red Velvet Cheesecake contains 1800 calories.  No, I did not go and look this up.  We asked the waiter and he told us…with much hesitation.  My Mom and I definitely let my Dad have the majority of the bites…

I was planning on spending Sunday in the kitchen making pizza dough and preparing the ingredients for my pizza party, but Chicago made other plans for me!  It was such a gorgeous day and I was forced to spend the day on the beach…tough life, I know!  I am heading home for the Indy 500 this weekend and am going to try my hardest to include a Kitchen Adventure into my weekend.  Hopefully Monday I can help prepare the food for my brothers graduation party.

CONGRATULATIONS Jack!!  I can’t belive you graduated high school and are so old….I remember the day you were born and I tried to send you back 🙂  You can thank Mom for not allowing that to happen….Love you!!

 

 

Cubs & Cooking

Aaah finally…spring in Chicago!  The weather has been beautiful, the sun has been shining, and everything seems to be going great!!  I went to my first Cubs game on Saturday, am heading to Minneapolis to visit one of my best friends this weekend, then spending a week in Florida with my mom.  I start my new job in May and am finally feeling like a resident of Chicago.  It’s been a long trek after college trying to get my feet on the ground, but can finally say I am employed!! Sunday I went to 33 Club for brunch and Mimosa’s with the girls and spent the day hanging around the house and making dinner! It was a very relaxing day and MUCH needed!

Wrigley Field

First Cubs Game!!

For dinner Sunday night, I made my Grandpa’s Artichoke Sauce with penne pasta.  It is a fairly simple sauce to make, but you need to make sure you really cook the flour so your sauce doesn’t taste too much like flour.  All you need is whipped butter, chicken broth, heavy whipping cream, parsley flakes, salt & pepper, quartered artichoke hearts, and of course Pasta.  It was a pretty long weekend, so dinner was not as exciting as previous “Sunday Dinners,”  but it was Nikki’s first time making it to dinner, which was exciting because she enjoys cooking as much as I do!

The sauce before adding the artichoke hearts

Pasta with Artichoke Sauce

MMM…Dinner!

This weeks Kitchen Adventure was not as “adventurous” as previous ones…but the weekend was full of craziness, so that makes up for it!  The sauce was also really good and I am so glad I finally learned how to make it!  This weekend I will be in Minneapolis and will be on a plane to Florida Sunday night, so my Kitchen Adventures next week will have to be canceled.   Hopefully, since it will be just my mom and I in Florida, there will double the amount of cooking adventures to share when I return!