Fantasy Menu Planning — Easter Dinner # 1

Fantasy Menu Planning - Easter Dinner # 1

Easter Dinner Menu # 1

It took quite some time to make my selections and  gather the links to all of these scrumptious menu items because I became so distracted during the search.  There are some amazing blogs out there and the variety of recipe creations are without limit.

For this menu I began with the main dish as roasted ham, which has been fairly standard for our home-cooked feasts during this holiday.  I found an intriguing version entitled “Sweet & Spicy Ham” found at “What’s Cookin’ Chicago?” and I decided this would be a perfect place to begin.  I thought a great accompaniment would be “Potato Galette” with thinly sliced Yukon gold potatoes and sweet onions.  Head over to “Yummy Supper” to check out the full recipe and beautiful photographs.  Going along with our more traditional theme, we’ll add “Green Beans with Walnuts” to go with the pink ham and the lovely golden potato galette.  (

Because everything else is traditional, we are going to zing our guests with a more non-traditional salad.  Check out “Recipe Girl” for the instructions for their version of “Marinated Kale Salad with Apples and Oranges.”  This salad looks magnificent and I would be excited to serve this to my guests.

After this delicious meal it is time to wind down and relax with some dessert and coffee.  Returning to my traditional boundaries I have decided on pie, found at “Cosmo Cookie.”  Beautiful “Raspberry Pie” sounds so sweet-tangy and spring-like.  When I perused the photographs of this pie on their website I was influenced by how simple and delicious this would be to set off a great meal.  It isn’t  too different, but it is a little more exotic than the more common fruit pies.  I would like to pair the pie with some delicious “Iced Coffee” and I found one I liked at “Sugar & Cloth” because it looked so creamy & refreshing.


Okay – let’s recap!

Sweet & Spicy Ham

Potato Galette

Green Beans with Walnuts

Marinated Kale Salad with Apples and Oranges


Raspberry Pie

Iced Coffee

Check out my fellow bloggers by following the links from the listed menu items. 

They have a lot to offer and I am sure you will enjoy reading.

Check back for Fantasy Menu Planning for Easter Dinner # 2….by DebraJ

Keeping Cake

Keeping Cake
Great gift idea.

I came across this recipe in one of those fun coffee break moments at work when everyone is escaping tasks and chores for a few moments and recycling their brains with some chatter about home.  I have used the recipe a few times, mostly around the holidays,  and I have found the assertion that it “keeps” for a lengthy period of time to be absolutely true.  In fact, as difficult as it may be to believe, it improves with age (as most women do, of course).

Keeping Cake
  • 3 cups cranberries, rinsed and divided
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon orange peel
  • 2-1/4 cup flour
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon cloves
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large saucepan, combine 1-1/2 cups cranberries, sugar and orange peel.
  3. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring constantly, until berries pop and mixtures thicken (about 5 minutes).
  4. Remove from heat.
  5. Chop remaining cranberries and add to the cranberry mixture.
  6. Cool
  7. In a large bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, baking soda, and salt.
  8. In another bowl beat eggs with sour cream.
  9. Stir egg mixture into dry mixture.
  10. Stir in butter, cranberry mixture and pecans.
  11. Pour into two greased and floured 8X4 inch loaf pans and bake 1 hour or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  12. Cool the cakes in the pans 10 minutes before removing from pans and cooling completely on wire racks.
  13. Wrap cakes in aluminum foil and allow to age 1 week.
  14. The flavor will continue to improve over several weeks.
  15. The cakes will keep up to 3 months in a cool, dry place.


Keeping Cake
Tastes great with fresh brewed coffee.

FREEZE ME — Freezes gracefully and when defrosted tastes great.  Freezing prolongs the “keeping”

This is a perfect recipe for GIFTS!

Refill my coffee, please…..DebraJ.

I have not received any compensation or free gifts for creating this post.  The ideas and opinions are my own.

With Soup the Heart Grows Fonder – Happy Valentine’s Day, Dear Hubby

I think the men have it a lot easier when it comes to gifts for Valentine’s Day because, let’s face it, the female recipients are a LOT easier to buy for when it comes to a simple little “pretend” holiday like V-Day.

Valentine’s Day is a little tricky when it comes to buying gifts for men.  They aren’t usually quite as touched by flowers or chocolate, or something that smells good.  So what’s a girl to do to show her affection for that special guy?

This year I decided to go with true practicality.  Dear Hubby loves soup, and if we have it around the house he will eat every can, every day, until it is gone.  For that reason, I don’t buy it very much to avoid all the negative things that come  with eating canned food every day.


So this year, I bought him soup.  Yes, that’s right,  soup.  You’ll notice that I did select one of the healthier varieties – Progresso LIGHT.

I also hopped into Dollar Tree to pick up some snazzy decorations to make a pretty presentation.

So, with something in my imagination (which doesn’t always work!), I proceed.


I chose a transparent red bag type wrap (the kind you use to wrap gift baskets) and a heart-shaped mini-balloon and some pretty curly bows.  Okay – the bows are more for me than him since he won’t even notice, but they make me happy.

I realized that I couldn’t just place the cans of soup into the bag as they were or it would look like a sack of soup.  So, I used a piece of cardboard cut a size large enough so that I could sit the four cans of soup in a square.


After that I just bunched up the bag, inserted the balloon on a stick and wrapped the twisty tie around the top.  Oh — and I placed the beautiful bows on, too.


Happy Valentine’s Day, Dear!


NOTE:  I did not receive any compensation or free products to create this post.  The ideas and opinions were my own.


Happy Valentine’s Day!

BBB_Valentine's Day coffee

I don’t know why, but Valentine’s Day is one of my favorite holidays.  I love all the red and the pink and the hearts!  Yes, I love the sappy hearts.

I realize it is basically a “made up” holiday without any real significance, but who can be upset with a day where you make a point to tell someone you love them.  I know you can say “I love you” any other day of the year, but this is the “SPECIAL” day.

So as you sip your coffee or tea or Diet Coke in the morning, allow yourself to be drawn into the festivity and enjoy the experience. 

BBB_Valentine's Day coffee.2

Happy Valentine’s Day!  ….from DebraJ