Turtle Cookies. New Music From Gilbert Lee.

These Turtle Cookies are a cross between a cookie and a fudge candy. The sweetened condensed milk gives the cookies a chewy texture while the crisp pecans add some crunch.

The irony of me making this recipe is that it calls for mixing up the batter in the microwave and my microwave died after being a workhorse for over 14 years. Just when I wanted to make these cookies! The good news is that the good old stove works just as well.

Turtle Cookies


4 tablespoons unsalted butter
12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups chopped pecans, toasted
1-1/4 cups caramel bits (I chopped up a caramel filled chocolate bar instead)
Icing (recipe follows)
1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
2 teaspoons shortening


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

2. Microwave butter on high until melted. Add chocolate chips and milk to the butter and microwave until chips are melted, stirring every 30 seconds.

3. Stir in vanilla. Add flour and mix well. Stir in pecans and caramel bits.

4. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto prepared baking sheets. Bake until edges are set, 7-9 minutes.

5. Cool cookies 2 minutes then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Makes about 4 dozen



1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
2 teaspoons shortening


1. Microwave chocolate chips and shortening on high until chocolate is melted. Stir until smooth then drizzle over cooled cookies. Store in an airtight container.

Recipes from Taste Of Home

Ready for some swamp rock? I haven’t heard that term in awhile, but here we are with a little slice of countryish soul. The persistent percussion is addictive.

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


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Roast Jerusalem Artichoke, Chestnut And Thyme Soup. New Music From CHANCES.

My husband absolutely adores Jerusalem artichokes. I could take or leave the knobbly tubers, but mostly because I detested peeling the damn things. Now that he grows his own, the skin is much thinner so all the artichokes need is a good scrub before using in recipes.

If you are looking for a warm, earthy bowl of vegetable soup that would be perfect on a chilly November night, give this different Roast Jerusalem Artichoke, Chestnut And Thyme Soup a try. The sweet chestnuts are an unexpected, yet very delicious, match to the Jerusalem artichokes.

Roast Jerusalem Artichoke, Chestnut And Thyme Soup


600g Jerusalem artichokes, scrubbed and sliced
olive oil
2 onions, sliced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 sprigs thyme, plus more to serve
200g cooked chestnuts
600ml chicken stock
400ml heavy cream


1. Preheat oven to 180℃/350℉.

2. Spread the artichokes on a baking tray and drizzle with some olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, and roast for 15-18 minutes until golden brown and tender.

3. While the artichokes are roasting, add 1 tablespoon olive oil to a pan over low heat. Add the onion, garlic and thyme and cook for 10 minutes until soft and translucent.

4. Add the cooked artichokes and half of the chestnuts to the pan with the onions. Stir in the chicken stock and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the cream and bring to the boil. In a blender (or using a handheld blender) process soup until smooth.

5. Chop the remaining chestnuts and dry fry until they become a little crunchy. Remove from pan an allow to cool a little.

6. To serve, pour soup into bowls and sprinkle with the chopped chestnuts. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil and a few fresh thyme leaves.

Serves 4

Recipe from Olive Magazine

I love the energy in “Rishikesh”, new from Montreal-based group CHANCES. Most amazing thing? Per the band, the song is “built around a loop of voices recorded on iPhone on the banks of the Ganges in the holy city of Rishikesh, India.”

“Say what you mean
Mean what you do”

Check out CHANCES on the band’s Website where you can learn of upcoming shows in Canada and buy their music.


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Chicken Pot Pie Ragu. New Music From Lucas Oswald.

When you don’t have time to work with a pastry crust, you can get all of the delicious flavors of chicken pot pie in this delicious ragu and toss it with a warm bowl of noodles. A crisp sprinkling of toasted panko on top is the perfect finishing touch.

Chicken Pot Pie Ragu


3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup panko
2 small carrots, quartered lengthwise and sliced
2 leeks, white and light-green parts only, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 teaspoon flour
1 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup chicken stock
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cubed
1/2 cup frozen peas
12 ounces extra-wide egg noodles


1. In a large skillet, melt 1 tablespoon of butter over medium heat. Add the panko, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside.

2. In the same skillet, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Add the carrots, leeks and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Add the flour and stir until the vegetables are coated, 2 minutes. Add the cream and stock and bring to a boil. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is reduced by half, about 8 minutes.

3. Add the chicken and peas. Cook the ragu over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through, about 8 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

4. Meanwhile, cook the noodles to al dente then drain. Return the noodles to the pot and toss with the ragu. Divide the pasta among bowls and top with the toasted panko.

Serves 4

Recipe slightly adapted from Rachael Ray

Anyone who has struggled with depression will appreciate Lucas Oswald’s new album ‘Whet’. “I Believe In Trying” throws the challenges into a beautiful song where the lyrics feel suspended in the musical atmosphere.

“Still holding on
but who am I?”

Check out Lucas Oswald on his Website where you can learn of upcoming shows in the UK and buy the music.


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Caramel Apple Crisp Bars. New Music From Kedr Livanskiy.

I am just back from a week in Russia to visit my daughter who is studying in Moscow for the fall semester.

What a trip!

Moscow is a glorious capital city full of beautiful things to see. My girl knows her way around and has a firm command of the language so all I had to do was relax and let her work her tour guide magic. We were able to spend a long weekend in Saint Petersburg which was truly magical, too.

Here are a few photos.

Hands down, my favorite place in Moscow was Red Square. It’s larger than life. All of the iconic buildings are more beautiful and impressive in person than any picture can really convey.

Inside the churches stilled my heart.

So many gorgeous things to look at.

And the food?

Oh my, is it good. Even the ubiquitous beet borscht is a revelation with shreds of beef in a warming beef broth. Georgian cuisine, new to me, was a favorite with heady breads filled with cheese and egg, dumplings filled with delectable spiced beef and egglplant roll-ups filled with cheese and pomegranate. The Russians know a thing about pastry, cake, beignet-style donuts, and coffee…It was a good thing that we walked for miles and miles every day or I would have done some serious damage on the scale.

There were some beautiful floors at historic sites.

So we had to wear wookie-like protective foot gear. lol.

A WC that really excited this music freak. What a sink!!

We ate at the tallest restaurant in Europe.

We went to the ballet, of course. Romeo and Juliet in the new Mariinsky Theatre.

And we went to a cat talent show. That sums up the awesomeness of this trip.

The long journey home brought me to Vermont in the throes of late autumn. The trees are bare, the wind is howling and my cavernous house is back to 52°F beckoning for the heat to finally be turned on.

Another way to get toasty warm is to fire up the oven and bake some warm, comforting desserts like these Caramel Apple Crisp Bars. Two types of apples are sandwiched between a sweet crust and a nutty, buttery oat streusel. A cloak of caramel tops it all off.

I miss Russia, I miss my girl, but it is so good to be back in the kitchen.

Caramel Apple Crisp Bars


3 large Granny Smith apples, peeled and thinly sliced
3 large Honeycrisp apples, peeled and thinly sliced
1 cup granulated sugar, divided
3 2/3 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 1/2 cups plus 2/3 cup packed light brown sugar, divided
2 Tbs cornstarch
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3 cups old-fashioned oats
1 3/4 cups unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1 cup chopped pecans
11 oz unwrapped caramel squares
2 Tbs heavy cream


1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line the bottom and sides of a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with aluminum foil and then parchment paper, letting excess extend over sides. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl beat oats, butter, baking soda, 3 cups flour, 1 1/2 cups brown sugar and 1 teaspoon salt with a mixer until well combined and crumbly. Press 4 cups of the mixture evenly into the prepared baking pan. Add pecans to remaining oat mixture and set aside.

3. Bake crust for 25 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes.

4. In a large bowl combine the sliced apples and 1/2 cup granulated sugar. Let stand for 30 minutes.

5. Drain apples, discarding liquid. Stir 2/3 cup each flour and brown sugar into the apples. Add cornstarch, cinnamon, 1 teaspoon salt, vanilla and nutmeg. Stir until well combined.

6. Evenly layer the apples on top of the warm crust. Sprinkle the apple layer with the pecan-oat streusel.

7. Bake for 40 minutes or until the streusel is golden brown.

8. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for at least 20 minutes then chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.

9. Lift the foil and parchment out of the pan using the overhang on the sides and cut into bars.

10. In a medium saucepan, heat caramels and cream until smooth and melted.

11. Drizzle bars with caramel. Let stand until set, about 5 minutes.

Make ahead tip: The bars will stay fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3 days.

Makes about 16 bars

Recipe from Paula Deen

Let’s go to Moscow for our music today. ‘Sunrise Stop (остановка рассвет)’ is new from Kedr Livanskiy aka Yana Kedrina.

Believe me that these lyrics are ace. (Bandcamp translates) :)

“И никуда не уйти, никуда не убежать
Автобуса нет, остановка рассвет”

Check out Kedr Livanskiy on Facebook. You can buy her music on Bandcamp.


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Crispy Baked Taco Wings. New Music From FEHM.

Q: Why don’t chickens like people?
A: They beat eggs.

Thinking about what to serve while watching some football? Give these Crispy Baked Taco Wings a try. The corn chip coating gets super crisp in the oven while the chicken stays nice and moist inside. Easy and fun.

Crispy Baked Taco Wings


1/2 cup flour
1 (1 oz) envelope taco seasoning
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 3/4 cups crushed corn chips
2 1/2 pounds chicken wingettes and drummettes


1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

2. In a shallow bowl, mix flour and taco seasoning. Place melted butter and corn chips in separate shallow bowls.

3. Dip wings in flour mixture to coat both sides then shake off excess. Dip into butter, then in crumb mixture, patting to help coating adhere.

4. Transfer wings to a greased 15 x 10 x 1-inch baking sheet.

5. Bake, uncovered, 30-40 minutes or until juices run clear.

Makes about 2 dozen wings

Recipe from Taste Of Home

Oh, 80s’ music, Wherefore art thou?

Apparently right here in FEHM’s new song ‘Human Age’. Let those synth waves wash right over you.

Check out FEHM on the band’s Website where you can buy their music.


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Avocado Hummus. New Music From CHILDCARE.

Did you hear about the vegetarian that died during dinner? Police are calling it a hummus side.

If you want to eat hummus until you die, this lemony avocado hummus would be a good one to start with. It’s super creamy and delicious with pita chips or chopped vegetable dippers.

Avocado Hummus


1 (15 oz) can chickpeas
2 small avocados
1 tablespoon tahini
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
3-5 tablespoons water
Salt and pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil, to drizzle


1. Process first 5 ingredients in a food processor until very smooth.

2. Add some water to thin out the dip to the desired consistency then season to taste with salt and pepper. Drizzle with a little extra-virgin olive oil to serve.

Recipe from Imagelicious

‘Getting Over You (By Dressing Up Like You)’

Now that is a solid song title. Lucky for us, the tune to go along with it is a rollicking good time.

Check out CHILDCARE on the band’s Website where you can learn of upcoming shows in the UK. You can buy their music here.


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Chocolate Bourbon-Spiked Banana Bread. New Music From Jared Saltiel.

I always put chocolate chips in my banana bread, but it never occurred to me to add some booze. A hit of bourbon gives this impossibly moist bread a fun flavor boost. It’s the ultimate comfort food with an extra dose of comfort!

Chocolate Bourbon-Spiked Banana Bread


2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 3)
1 tsp lemon juice
3 Tbs bourbon
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips


1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350℉. Grease and flour a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan.

2. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt.

3. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes.

4. Add eggs one at a time, beating for 1 minute between each addition. Stop the mixer, scrape down the sides of the bowl and add bananas, lemon juice, and bourbon. Beat until well incorporated.

5. Turn the mixer to low and add the flour mixture all at once. Beat until just incorporated. Use a rubber spatula to stir in the walnuts and chocolate chips.

6. Spoon batter into prepared loaf pan.

7. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until a tester inserted in center of the loaf comes out clean.

8. Remove from the oven and allow loaf to cool in the pan for 20 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely.
The bread will keep for up to 5 days, well wrapped, at room temperature.

Makes one 9 x 5 inch loaf

Recipe from the Joy The Baker Cookbook by Joy Wilson

Brooklyn-based artist Jared Saltiel has an epic new ballad out. ‘Wayward Queen’ builds in emotional with plenty of strings to enhance that reflective mood.

“If love is true, I’ll never need
To choose between another one and you”

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


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