NYC Deli Dogs. New Music From ameliarose.

I grew up in NYC and the street carts usually served their hot dogs with sauerkraut and yellow mustard. Sometimes there was tomato-onion sauce as an available topping.

There was NEVER cheese, gherkins or horseradishy special sauce tucked into the bun with the frank.

But, you know what? Those toppings are absolutely delicious on a hot dog.

Go ahead and call it a NYC Deli Dog if you want…you know that it isn’t really, but be assured it’s yummy.

NYC Deli Dogs


2 Tbs mayonnaise
2 Tbs ketchup
2 Tbs creamed horseradish sauce
4 slices Swiss cheese
Chopped gherkins
Yellow mustard
4 hot dogs, cooked
4 hot dog buns


1. Mix together mayonnaise, ketchup and creamed horseradish sauce.

2. Put a slice of swiss cheese inside each hot dog bun.

3. Add the hot dog and some of the mayonnaise sauce then top with sauerkraut and gherkins. Drizzle with mustard and serve.

Makes 4 deli dogs

Recipe from Olive Magazine

This is different.

“GOLIATH” is the new single from NY-based artist ameliarose. There’s a lot going on…insistent piano, little vocal squeaks, some brooding 90’s Alanis vibes, and an overall mesmerizing, chill feel. And she’s only 19 years old!

“I’m bitter & bold
I’m glitter & gold
I’ve lost control
& I need your hold”

Check out ameliarose on her Website where you can buy the music.


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Sweet And Salty Snack-Food Cake. New Music From Parks N’ Rec.

July is the beginning of birthday season in my house. There is a birthday every month culminating with JC’s on December 25th.

I made this Sweet And Salty Snack-Food Cake last November for my son’s birthday and it was the perfect, festive celebration cake. The brown sugar cake is frosted with a delectable brown sugar icing and coated with a thick chocolate ganache.

And then there is that snack food crumble!

A mixture of salty potato chips, crunchy cookies, sweet coconut is baked after being tossed with butter and brown sugar. Toss in some chocolate covered raisins and you’ve got the ultimate dessert granola. It’s a lovely flavor contrast to the cake, but would also be fabulous spooned over some ice cream.

Sweet And Salty Snack-Food Cake

Ingredients for the Cake:

1 cup unsalted butter, softened, plus more to grease the pans
2-3/4 cups flour, plus more for dusting the pans
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1-3/4 cups packed light brown sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1-1/2 cups buttermilk, at room temperature
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Ingredients for the Crumble:

3/4 cup crushed salted ridged potato chips
2 crunchy chocolate chip cookies, finely chopped
1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup chocolate-covered raisins and/or nuts, chopped

Ingredients for the Icing and Ganache:

1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream
1-1/2 cups unsalted butter, softened
Pinch of salt
2-1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped

Directions to make the Cake:

1. Preheat oven to 350˚. Butter the bottom and sides of two 9-inch round cake pans. Dust with flour and tap out the excess.

2. Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda in a medium bowl.

3. Cream the butter and brown sugar in a large bowl with a mixer on medium-high speed, until light and fluffy, about 6 minutes.

4. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until well combined. Continue to beat until well blended, 1 to 2 more minutes. Reduce the speed to medium low then beat in the flour mixture in three batches, alternating with the buttermilk and vanilla in two batches, until just smooth (the batter may look curdled at first, but it will smooth out).

5. Divide the batter between the prepared pans. Bake until the cakes are browned and the edges begin to pull away from the pans and the centers spring back when pressed, 35 to 45 minutes.

6. Transfer cakes to a rack and let cool 10 minutes in the pans. Remove the cakes from the pans and place on rack to cool completely.

Directions to make the Crumble:

1. Toss the potato chips, cookies, coconut, melted butter and brown sugar in a medium bowl until well coated.

2. Spread on a baking sheet and bake until lightly browned, about 10 minutes.

3. Let cool, then stir in the chocolate-covered raisins and/or nuts. Set aside.

Directions to make the Icing:

1. Mix the brown sugar and 2 tablespoons heavy cream in a small microwave-safe bow. Microwave, stirring once, until smooth, about 1 minute. Let cool slightly.

2. Cream the butter and salt in a large bowl with a mixer on medium speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the confectioners’ sugar in two batches until smooth.

3. Add the brown sugar mixture and beat on medium-high speed until fluffy and spreadable, 1 to 2 more minutes.

Directions to make the Ganache:

1. Combine the remaining 1/3 cup heavy cream and the chopped chocolate in a microwave-safe measuring bowl.

2. Microwave, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted, about 1 minute. Let the ganache cool until it’s thickened but still spreadable.

Directions to assemble cake:

1. Put 1 cake layer on a cake stand or serving plate. Top with 1 cup icing, spreading it to the edges. Sprinkle with a heaping 1/2 cup of the crumble, gently pressing it into the icing.

2. Top with the second cake layer. Cover the top and sides of the cake with a thin layer of icing (this is the crumb coat so it doesn’t have to be perfect). Refrigerate until the icing is set, about 15 minutes.

3. Frost cake with the remaining icing. Press some of the remaining crumble around the bottom of the cake.

4. Spoon the ganache over the top of the cake and gently spread, letting it drip down the sides. Sprinkle with the remaining crumble.

Serves 12

Recipe from Food Network

Parks N’ Rec, a new project by Toronto-based Marco DiFelice, has just released the EP ‘Wish I Was Here’.

Only a few notes into ‘A Little Cruel’ and I’m sitting on a beach with waves crashing and the sun kissing my face. It’s definitely a summer song that you need to blast right now.

Check out Parks N’ Rec on the band’s Website. You can buy the music here.


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Slow Cooker Asian Baby Back Ribs With Udon Salad. Listening To Brad Byrd.

(I apologize to anyone named Karen who stops by here. It must be a royal pain in the ass to have your name used in this way.)

It’s summer and it’s hot.

As a cool alternative to the grill to keep yourself from melting in the kitchen, look to a slow cooker. These Slow Cooker Asian Baby Back Ribs require very little prep and slow cook up terrifically tender. The sesame-ginger glaze is lovely as is the fresh tasting Udon Salad served on the side.

Slow Cooker Asian Baby Back Ribs With Udon Salad


⅓ cup soy sauce
½ cup packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 pounds baby back ribs (2 to 3 racks), cut into 8 pieces
1 (8.8-ounce) package udon noodles
1 bunch radishes (about 8), halved and thinly sliced
¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves
4 green onions, sliced


1. In a 4 to 6-quart slow cooker, mix together the soy sauce, sugar, vinegar, cornstarch, oil, ginger, and cayenne. Add the ribs and turn to coat.

2. Cover and cook on low until the ribs are tender, 6 to 7 hours, or on high for 3 to 4 hours.

3. Twenty minutes before serving, heat broiler. Place the ribs, meaty-side up, on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet. Strain the cooking liquid from the slow cooker into a medium bowl. Brush the ribs with half of the cooking liquid and broil, basting twice with the pan juices, until shiny and glazed, 3 to 4 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, cook the noodles according to the package directions. Drain and run under cold water to cool.

5. Add the noodles to the bowl of remaining cooking liquid from the slow cooker and toss with the radishes, cilantro, and green onions. Serve the ribs with the udon salad.

Serves 4

Recipe from Real Simple

Here’s a cool cover of The Cure’s ‘Lovesong’.

Check out Brad Byrd on Bandcamp where you can buy his music.


Posted in Pasta, Pork, Side Dish, Slow Cooker | Tagged | Leave a comment

Short And Sweet. Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwiches.

Summer is almost here! Pull some of these Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwiches out of the freezer for a refreshing treat that everyone will love.

Chocolate Chip Ice Cream Sandwiches


1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream or chocolate chip ice cream, softened
1 (16 1/2 ounce) roll refrigerated chocolate chip cookie dough
1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips


1. Line a 13 x 9-inch baking pan with parchment paper on plastic wrap. Spoon the softened ice cream into the pan, smoothing it into an even layer. Freeze for at least 4 hours or until ready to assemble cookies.

2. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

3. Roll cookie dough into 16 even balls. Place on prepared baking sheets and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool completely on a wire rack.

4. Use a 2 1/2 inch round cookie cutter to cut ice cream into 8 rounds. (I had a lot of ice cream left over). Place one ice cream round on the flat side of 8 cookies. Top with flat side of remaining 8 cookies.

5. Roll edges of cookies in miniature chocolate chips. Wrap each ice cream sandwich in plastic wrap and freeze for at least 4 hours before serving.

Note: Ice cream sandwiches can be made ahead and frozen up to one month.

Makes 8 ice cream sandwiches

Recipe from Paula Deen

Time for a short song that packs a long punch in its one minute and 48 seconds.

And a sweet song that seems sad AF.

“I want you back in my life”

Check out Call To Mind on Bandcamp where you can buy their music.

Learn more about Moon Tapes on Bandcamp where you can buy their music.


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Red, White And Blueberry Ice Cream Pie With Granola Crust. New Music From Welcome Center.

Q: What do you call raspberries playing the guitar?
A: A jam session.

Q: What do you call a sad raspberry?
A: A blueberry.

Q: What did one raspberry say to the other?
A: If you weren’t so sweet, we wouldn’t be in this jam!

Q: What do you call a raspberry that uses foul language?
A: Berry Rude.

Need a patriotic-looking dessert for Memorial Day? This cool Red, White And Blueberry Ice Cream Pie With Granola Crust has got you covered. Swirls of blueberry and raspberry sauces cover vanilla ice cream in a nutty, crunchy granola crust. You can make the pie ahead of time, so that’s a bonus.

Red, White And Blueberry Ice Cream Pie With Granola Crust


2 cups granola without raisins
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 tablespoon honey
3 cups vanilla ice cream or low-fat vanilla frozen yogurt, softened

Ingredients for raspberry sauce:

6 oz fresh raspberries (about 1 1/4 cups)
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch

Ingredients for blueberry sauce:

6 oz fresh blueberries (about 1 1/4 cups)
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9-inch pie plate.

2. In a food processor, pulse granola and walnuts until fine crumbs form. Add butter and honey and pulse just until blended. Press mixture onto bottom and up sides of prepared pie plate.

3. Bake 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool completely.

4. Spread ice cream into prepared crust. Freeze, covered, for at least 2 hours.

5. In a small saucepan, combine raspberry sauce ingredients. Bring to a boil then decrease heat to medium and cook, uncovered, 5-7 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, in another saucepan, do the same with the blueberry sauce ingredients.

6. Cool and press each sauce separately through a fine mesh strainer into separate bowls.

7. Transfer each sauce into a resealable plastic bag. Snip a small hole in corner of each bag.

8. Decorate pie as desired. I swirled most of the sauces over the pie, but be sure to see how pretty Marina’s pie is using a lighter touch of sauce.

9.Freeze pie, covered, until serving time. Serve with any remaining raspberry and blueberry sauces. Serves 8

Recipe from Yummy Mummy Kitchen

Welcome Center (Jesse Smith and Aaron Sternick) released a new single from their forthcoming EP “Talk Talk Talk” due out this summer. “Parasite City” delivers comfy indie-pop with all the flourishes one could want from the genre. It’s ace…just perfect for long weekend listening.

The video for ‘Parasite City’ gives off bad ass Rejection with a capital R vibes. It’s a crazy video. And did I mention that the song is ace?

Check out Welcome Center on Bandcamp where you can buy their music.


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Pizza Mac & Cheese. New Music From Pizzagirl.

Last night I ate inside of a restaurant for the first time since late February 2020.

I was uncomfortable the entire time and couldn’t even have a cocktail since I had to drive 2 1/2 hours home.

I know it will get easier, but I was so overwhelmed that I couldn’t even fully appreciate eating a lovely meal that I hadn’t prepared, with fun people who weren’t in my immediate family. Man, what a messed up time this has been. I hope you are being very kind to yourself.

If, like me, you have done a ton of kitchen duty over the past 15 months you may be feeling a bit burned out. Here’s an easy and fabulous casserole to feed the crew with hardly any effort.

Pizza Mac & Cheese cuts some corners by using prepared macaroni and cheese. Pile on some ground beef and pizza toppings, bake, then dig in.

Pizza Mac & Cheese


1 (7-1/4 oz) package macaroni and cheese dinner mix or 1 (12 oz) package of frozen macaroni and cheese
1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1 small green bell pepper, chopped
1-1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
1-1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
14 ounces pizza sauce
1/2 cup sliced pepperoni


1. Prepare the boxed macaroni and cheese according to package directions. If using the frozen kind, microwave according to package directions.

2. In a large skillet, cook the beef, onion and green pepper over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain.

3. Transfer prepared macaroni and cheese to a greased 2 1/2 quart baking dish. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese and 1/2 cup cheddar cheese. Top with the beef mixture, pizza sauce, pepperoni and remaining cheeses.

4. Bake, uncovered, at 350°F for 30-35 minutes or until heated through.

Serves 6

Recipe from Taste Of Home

Liverpool-based artist Pizzagirl (aka Liam Brown) has a new album ‘softcore mourn’ coming out this July. “Bullet Train”, the second single released, is pure electro-dance goodness. It’s technically sad, but it makes me very happy.

“Oh no, you kissed your plastic surgeon
With lips I know he’s working on”

Check out Pizzagirl on his Website where you can buy the music.


Posted in Main Courses, Pasta | Tagged | 2 Comments

Brown Butter Blondies With Caramel Almonds. Listening To Ellis.

If the title of today’s recipe didn’t make you smile, then that grinning possum surely must have. What a cheeky looking little guy.

These blondies are incredible. Salty-sweet caramel soaked almonds top a dense cake layer rich with the nutty flavor of the browned butter. Yum.

Brown Butter Blondies With Caramel Almonds


1 cup unsalted butter
1 ¾ cups dark brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups flour
¾ teaspoon fine sea salt
3 cups sliced almonds
½ cup butter, cubed
½ cup light brown sugar
¼ cup honey
⅓ cup heavy cream


1. Preheat oven to 350℉. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper.

2. In a skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Continue cooking until butter is a golden brown and gives off a nutty smell, around 5 minutes. Pour browned butter into a heatproof bowl and let come to room temperature, about 20 minutes.

3. Use an electric mixer to beat brown butter with brown sugar until well combined. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Continue beating until smooth. Fold in flour and salt. Do not overmix.

4. Transfer batter to prepared pan. Bake until middle is set, about 20 minutes.

5. Meanwhile, prepare the caramel almonds. Toast almonds on a baking sheet in oven until just starting to turn golden, about 5 minutes.

6. In a heavy saucepan over medium-high heat, combine butter, sugar, honey and cream. Cook, without stirring, until mixture reaches 116℉ on a candy thermometer, about 7 minutes. Carefully add nuts and stir to coat. Remove from heat.

7. When blondies are done baking, immediately cover with an even layer of the caramel almonds. Bake 10 minutes more. Let cool to room temperature before cutting into squares to serve.

Makes 16

Recipe from The Wall Street Journal

Not a smiling possum but for today’s music we go to Fat Possum (Records, that is). The arresting track “Embarrassing”, from Ontario-based artist Ellis, oozes darkness and the sadness of regret. Making it bearable is her lovely vocals and the swirl of music around it.

“Maybe you were right
when you said I love to play the victim
Maybe you were right
I’m always looking for attention”

Check out Ellis on her Website where you can buy the music.


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Morning Matzo. Listening To Kosha Dillz.

Happy Passover!

Got some matzo hanging around? Try this Pop Tart-like spin to sweeten up your morning.

Just sandwich some strawberry jam and cream cheese between matzos and spoon on a simple glaze and some pretty sprinkles.

Morning Matzo


4 matzo sheets
2 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 Tbs strawberry jam
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 1/2 Tbs water
1 drop red food coloring
Coarse sugar or sprinkles


1. Break each matzo sheet in half.

2. Combine cream cheese and jam. Spread mixture between matzo halves and sandwich together.

3. Make glaze by whisking the confectioners’ sugar with the water and food coloring.

4. Spread some glaze on each matzo sandwich and sprinkle with coarse sugar.

Recipe from Food Network

Ready to rap with Kosha Dillz?

You bet you are.

The artist’s name, the song title, every lyric, the threads of klezmer…all make me smile.

Check out Kosha Dillz on Bandcamp where you can buy his music.


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Rainbow Spaghetti. Listening To Black Pumas.

Back in 2011, I was really into rainbows in my recipes. There was the Tiered Rainbow Cake, Rainbow Cupcakes, Graffiti Rainbow Layer Cake (one of my favorite cakes ever), Rainbow Cheesecake, and Rainbow Pancakes.

A few years passed and then I made checked Rainbow Cakes, a Rainbow Sprinkle Cake, Rainbow Cookies and Miniature Rainbow Pancakes.

Fast forward another bunch of years and I was flipping through BBC Good Food magazine and came across this Rainbow Spaghetti. Pasta struck me as such a strange thing to give the rainbow treatment that I immediately knew I had to try it.

And try it I did.

It’s colorful and weird (and evidently a huge sensory play item…just Google it).

I loved it.

Rainbow Spaghetti


1 pound spaghetti
Gel paste food color (I used red, orange, yellow, green and blue. I love this brand.)
To serve: some melted butter, Parmesan cheese and cracked black pepper


1. Cook the spaghetti following package instructions. Drain, then divide between resealable bags or bowls.

2. Add a drop of food coloring to each bag. Mix well, adding a splash of water to help distribute the color, if needed. Leave for 5 minutes, then rinse the spaghetti under cold running water to set the color.

3. To serve the spaghetti, toss with the melted butter, cheese and a few grinds of pepper.

Serves 4

Recipe from BBC Good Food

A rainbow dish needs a colorful song.

‘Colors’ by Austin-based Black Pumas packs a soulful punch. It is unifying, powerful and wraps me every time in a bluesy hug.

“All my favorite colors
My sisters and my brothers
see them like no other”

Check out Black Pumas on the band’s Website and Bandcamp where you can buy their music.


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Leprechaun Cookies. Listening To Adrian Crowley.

Aren’t these guys adorable?

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a plateful of Leprechaun Cookies that only require a little cutting and pasting to decorate. So fun.

Leprechaun Cookies


Milano cookies
Vanilla icing
Orange food coloring
Orange sprinkles
Green gumdrops
Green fruit slices (I had to use spearmint candies since that was all I could find…looked as cute)
Candy eyes
Chocolate sprinkles


1. Use food coloring to tint vanilla icing orange.

2. Spread a thin layer of the tinted icing around edges of cookie to make the beard. Cover with orange sprinkles.

3. To make each hat, cut off the bottom of the gumdrops (this will allow it to stick to the hat’s “brim”), then cut the gumdrop in half vertically and stick it onto a fruit slice.

4. Use icing to attach the hat to the top of the cookie. Attach mini candy eyes with icing and a chocolate sprinkle for the mouth.

Recipe from Parents

Obs we should go to Ireland for music to accompany the leprechauns.

Dublin-based Adrian Crowley has put together a little story in this dreamy tune crooned in that warm, deep voice. It’s an incredible song.

“I am thankfully thankful”

Check out Adrian Crowley on Bandcamp where you can buy his music.


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