Category: Dinner

Tomato Zucchini Bisque Soup

I sat staring at the screen of my phone yesterday morning, astonished and somewhat confounded, after my husband informed me via text that this coming weekend is, in fact, Labor Day weekend. You know, that extra long weekend that marks end of summer and the beginning of the steady march into autumn (and then the dreaded winter season…don’t even think about that four-letter “s” word that ends in “now”).

zucchini carrots celery onion

When did this happen?

chopped vegetables

Ok, so some of the early foliage is turning yellow. Sure, that could be a clue. And nights have been cooler. Back to School ads are everywhere and yeah, ok, it’s been a few weeks since I changed out my monthly contacts at the beginning of August, but who’s counting? Clearly I haven’t been. Read more →


There are so many things to love about summer. Long evenings, a plethora of outdoor activities, sun streaks in your hair and no need for an excuse to get ice cream. I also love the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables that are readily available at your local grocery store, or better yet, hand-delivered to your office by a regular mall walker.

sliced zucchini

flour panko egg

Imagine my shock and delight upon receiving not one, but two foot-long (plus!) zucchinis. I often purchase the ones in the grocery produce section that barely reach lengths worth boasting about. Read more →

jalapeno cheddar biscuits

I’m going to make a confession: dough used to intimidate me.

jalapeño chive

When I’m reading through recipes, aside from the “oh that makes me hungry” twinges, I’m often weighing whether or not I think I can succeed at making a particular recipe. Most of the time I feel pretty confident that an edible item will result, especially when the recipe is a relatively simple combination of good ingredients plus the addition of heat. Read more →


Cooking isn’t unique to me within my family. My aunts, my grandma and my mom, who often claims to barely cook, are all exceptional at creating great meals. My mom is responsible for expanding my palate beyond the juvenile Happy Meal. Though, admittedly, I was sure that those golden arches stood for Melissa and begged for trips to my namesake on the regular.

My mom makes the best chicken soup. So good that there’s a brief moment upon taking the first bite where winter is no longer my least favorite season.

lasagna noodles onion garlic

She bakes a delicious zucchini bread with chocolate chips. It seems an unlikely combination when thinking about the two ingredients alone on a plate, but add a little flour, sugar and butter (and more…and yes, we’ll cover this one day) and magic happens. Read more →


Hot, thick, seriously delicious french fries have been known to cause blissed out moments of joy. No joke.

Kind of like a warm towel fresh from the dryer.

Rolly-polly fuzzy puppy kisses.

Stretching your toes through flippy floppys on the first warm spring day.

New haircuts (Kari, thank you). Happy times.
I love ordering fries at a restaurant, though that infatuation can be a bit on the scary-obsessive side. It’s not easy to mutter the vague, “what kind of fries do you have?” when what I really want to know is, “Are they so good that you’ll probably sneak one off my plate before you bring our food to our table?” Yes? Oh, thank goodness. I’ll take em.

I know what you’re thinking. Sweet potato fries are not french fries. Read more →

Pasta Al Pomodoro

Let’s get something straight here: I like to read. Thrillers, comedy, cookbooks, romance, sci-fi/fantasy, bios of neat people. If it’s a good read, I’ll consume it greedily. Like french fries. I like to think I can read myself to sleep but then get so involved that suddenly it’s 2am and I need to get up for work in 5 hours.

Just one more chapter.

I mean it this time.
Right now I’m reading this fantastic series. The less bookish know it as an HBO Series that immediately made me want more; the catalyst in firing up the Kindle to seek out George R.R. Martin with an urgency that in pre-Whispernet days would have gotten me a speeding ticket. Read more →

Ginger Soy Grilled Salmon

It’s commonly accepted that the Midwest is the epicenter of “American Food.” Beef, corn, cheese, wheat, pork, apples, wild rice and cranberries are predominant in our little breadbasket of America.
Sure, we have our ubiquitous freshwater perch and walleye, but unless it’s Fish Fry Friday, fish was often overlooked as a main staple in this WI resident’s diet. Read more →

Sweet & Spicy Chicken Fajitas

Ok, so here we go.  It’s my first blog post for Friends with Fridges and I’m so very excited to share recipes and little bits of knowledge about the food we eat.  So excited, in fact, that it’s taken me all week to decide what to cook.  I’ve been staring into my pantry, opening and closing the refridgerator repeatedly.  I’ve been thinking about cheeses at work, contemplating meat or mushroom in the car, internally debating pasta versus potato while I take the dogs for a run, and worst of all, zoning out while talking with my husband because something he just said  made me think of avocados.  You see, it’s not just any blog post…it’s my first blog post.  I want it to be impressive and delicious.  I want you hooked. Red peppers, cilantro and pineapple
If any of you are familiar with the state of Wisconsin (cheeseheads, shaped like a hand, noteable breweries and a plethora of dairy cows), you’ll know that March is generally gray and chilly.  I live here and that’s the truth.  And although March is preferable to January, it’s one of those teaser months where old piles of snow adorn every curb and parking lot, freezing mornings give way to almost spring-like 40+ degree days and cloudy skies mixing with rain, sleet and snow dominate the forecast.  Normally.  But this morning I checked the forecast before choosing between a warm sweater with pants or a warm sweater over a dress to find that, oh my goodness, it’s going to be 72 and Sunny today!  And it doesn’t stop there.  70s and 80s stretch across my weather app, and no, it hasn’t defaulted back Cupertino.  It is really and truly going to be an absurdly beautiful week. Read more →