Perfect Prime Rib Roast

Perfect Prime Rib Roast.

On Christmas Eve this year, we decided on a Simple Surf and Turf Dinner menu to have with the family.  The Surf was Bacon Wrapped Scallops.  The Turf was Prime Rib.  Both were prepared simply, and turned out delish!  Baked potatoes, Roasted Brussels Sprouts and a Salad of romaine lettuce, apples, dried cranberries and walnuts accompanied the entrees.

I managed to quickly snap this iPhone photo of Hubby cutting the prime rib.  Not the best photo, but this recipe I found and slightly modified is such a keeper, I had to share!  The roasted vegetables not only help to make the perfect base for the au jus, they also taste great too as an extra veggie.

Whenever you want a simple, but elegant entree, this is a winner you will want to try.

Perfect Prime Rib Roast


  • 7-8 lb Prime Rib Roast (with bones)
  • 1-2 Tbsp Horseradish
  • 1-2 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
  • 2 tsp coarse salt
  • 2 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
  • 4 tsp fresh thyme
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 4-6 stalks celery, cut into 1-2 inch pieces
  • 1 cup carrots, cut into 1-2 inch pieces
  • 1 large sweet onion, quartered
  • 2 beef bouillon cubes
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp water


Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.  Rub roast with horseradish and mustard.

Combine salt, pepper thyme and garlic powder, and sprinkle over roast.

Place celery, carrot, and onion chunks in the bottom of a large roasting pan.  Place roast on top of vegetables.

Roast for 30 mins.  Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F, and roast until meat is 135 degrees F.

Remove from oven, cover with foil, and allow to rest for 30 mins.

Make  au jus sauce by placing pan drippings in roasting pan (veggies removed and reserved to serve) over a burner set to medium.  Stir in beef bouillon and water.  Bring to a boil.  Combine cornstarch and water, and whisk into sauce.  Allow sauce to thicken slightly, and serve with roast.


Cheers & Hugs,

The Perfect Hard Boiled Egg


The Perfect Hard Boiled Egg

It’s a age old debate, and there are likely as many methods as there are stars in the sky, but I recently tried this method from a great book I’ve started devouring that was recommended by a friend, Deep Run Roots by Vivian Howard.  This book is as much a story as it is a cookbook and as much an inspiration as it is picture book.  I am thoroughly enjoying it.  Vivian also has a PBS Series called A Chef’s Life and a restaurant called Chef & the Farmer.

So I tried Vivian’s method and loved it.  Complete simplicity and success.  A hard boiled egg generously topped with more salt and pepper than seems reasonable and a dab of Cholula hot sauce served on a bed of sprouts drizzled with fresh lemon juice = the perfect quick breakfast!

Here’s how to make them:

The Perfect Hard Boiled Egg

Place two eggs in a 2-quart sauce pan.  Cover with cool water to an inch above theperfect-hard-boiled-egg eggs.  Bring to a boil and cook for one minute.  Remove from heat, cover, and let sit for 10 minutes.  Drain the eggs, and run cold water over them until they are cool enough to handle.

If you are cooking more eggs, let sit 12 minutes.  

That’s it!  Simple!  Success!  The perfect food.


Cheers & Hugs,

Best Ever Meatballs

best ever meatball

Who doesn’t love a great meatball?!  Perfect little rounded balls of meat and cheese and bread and seasonings can be simmered in a rich tomato or marinara sauce served over a heaping plate of pasta.

They can be served on a soft Italian roll  smothered in melted mozzarella or provolone cheese.

They can be made into great party appetizers when simmered in a sauce of grape jelly or cranberries and chili sauce and eaten from tasseled toothpicks.

They can even be simmered in a cream and beef Swedish Meatball broth served over buttery egg noodles or eaten just as is from a fork for a tiny delectable delight.

best ever meatballs with spaghetti

Sometimes I just crave a nice plateful of spaghetti and meatballs.  When I do, this is my go-to best-ever perfect meatball recipe.  I’ve been known to substitute veal for the turkey or simply divide the recipe’s meats half and half with beef and pork.  It just depends on what I have on hand.

This week’s had turkey, beef, and sausage simmered in a spicy Puttanesca Sauce filled with chunky tomatoes, black and kalamata olives, capers, onions and garlic.  (Trader Joes’s makes a great base sauce that I “doctor up.”)  I served it atop whole wheat thin spaghetti, and we sprinkled with fresh, salty shaved Parmesan cheese.

If you are looking for the best-ever, perfect meatball recipe (that is baked, not fried) – look no further.  Here it is!

Mangia! Mangia!

Best Ever Meatballs

  • Servings: approximately 4 dozen
  • Print

Ingredients:best ever meatball

  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 lb ground Italian pork sausage
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbsp dried parsley
  • 2 cups Italian seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1 1/2 cups tap water


Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Combine ground turkey, ground beef and sausage in a large bowl.  Add minced garlic, eggs, salt, pepper, cheese, and parsley.  Combine thoroughly.   Add bread crumbs and water, and combine well using your hands.

Shape into meatballs.  You can make whatever size you like, but I make mine about 1 inch in diameter.

Line meatballs in a single layer on a baking stone (I love to use my Pampered Chef Stoneware Bar Pan) or any other shallow baking pan with sides.

Bake for approximately 20 minutes until browned and cooked through.

If you are making with sauce for spaghetti and meatballs, add fully cooked meatballs to sauce and simmer for several hours.

Leftovers make great meatball hoagies when served on fresh Italian rolls and topped with mozzarella or provolone cheese.

You can also use as cocktail meatballs by simmering in a sauce made from 1 32-oz jar of grape jelly or 2 cans of Jellied Cranberry Sauce and 2 12-oz jars of Chili Sauce.

No matter what sauce you like (or don’t) with your meatballs, this recipe will provide you with the best-ever perfect meatball.

Cheers & Hugs,

Perfect Pairs Wedding Shower Gift

Perfect Pairs Wedding Shower Gift Basket

Yesterday I shared the beautiful celebration of this adorable and perfect pair,  Candace and C.J. at the bridal shower I attended for Candace this past weekend.

perfect pair wedding shower gift framed photo

And, as promised, here is the “Perfect Pair” gift basket I made as my gift for them.

perfect pair wedding shower gift chip and dip bowl

It was so much fun trying to think of perfect pairings to include in this gift basket.

perfect pair wedding shower gift chips and dip salsa

I am sure there are so many more pairs you can think of, and you can customize the gift for your “perfect pair.”

perfect pair wedding shower gift cutting board and knife

Some things are simply practical, and others I found on Candace’s gift registry.

perfect pair wedding shower gift salt and pepper

Does anything “pair” better than peanut butter and jelly?

perfect pair wedding shower gift peanut butter and jelly

A pair of gloves just made perfect sense.

perfect pair wedding shower gift pair of gloves

I also had fun creating all the pear/pair tags with a variety of watercolor wash colors…

perfect pair wedding shower gift fork and spoon

and thinking of little things that would make their home cozy and special.

perfect pair wedding shower gift candle and light

Pen and paper… will they scribble little love notes?  create shopping lists?  wish lists?

perfect pair wedding shower gift pen and paper

A fun bag or basket pulls it all together and adds to the fun and practicality of the gift.

Perfect Pairs Wedding Shower Gift

If you are looking for a fun and creative bridal shower gift, consider this idea for your perfect pear  pair!

pear purple watercolor

Cheers & Hugs,


A Perfect Mother

good mom

Those of us with grown children can look back and know this is true.  But if there is anything I can say to young moms out there struggling to be a “perfect mother,”  I would say:

Cherish the moments.

Many of the days are long, but the years are short.

Even on your worst days, I’ll bet your children still think you are THE Best!

Your children will become what you are, so be what you want them to be.

Be their sunshine when their clouds are gray.

Embrace the gift you are given in your children…

and just LOVE them!

Happy Mother’s Day!

Cheers & Hugs,

Perfect Pot Roast

I always thought I made a decent pot roast.

Throw a frozen chuck roast in a crock pot or enamel roaster pan, add an envelope of Lipton onion soup, onions, carrots, water….

Not bad….

But then……. (drum roll please)…… I discovered Ree Drummond (aka The Pioneer Woman)’s Perfect Pot Roast recipe.

(Trumpets Sound and Angels Sing)

No turning back after you try this!

perfect pot roast

I forgot to take some nice pictures of the finished product (BAD BLOGGER Jodi!!!!), but hopefully these will begin to get your mouth watering.

And since when did Chuck Roast become such a premium price cut of beef?!!???!!!  It used to be CHEAP, but then I think people discovered the wonderful marbling and bits chunks of fat actually create A-M-A-Z-I-N-G flavor!

perfect pot roast 2

Here is the recipe I will use forever and ever from this day forward – love without end, amen.

You are going to LOVE it!

Perfect Pot Roast (original recipe from Ree Drumond, Pioneer Woman)

  • 1 4-5 lb. Chuck Roast
  • 2-4 Tbsp. Olive Oil
  • 3-4 cloves of fresh chopped garlic (I added this because garlic always makes it better!)
  • 2 Onions
  • 6-8 carrots
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 1 cup Red Wine (this is what MAKES it! – though Ree says you can use beef stock if you prefer)
  • 2-3 Cups Beef Stock (I used beef bouillon dissolved in water to make the “stock”)
  • 3 sprigs Fresh Thyme, coarsely chopped
  • 3 sprigs Fresh Rosemary, coarsely chopped (oh my obsession with fresh Rosemary! – this is #2 item that TOTALLY makes it!)

Generously salt and pepper your chuck roast.

Heat a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Add olive oil.

When the oil is hot, add the chopped garlic and quartered onions.  Brown nicely, then remove to a plate.  Do the same with carrots, adding additional olive oil as needed.

Place the meat in the pan and sear it for about a minute on all sides until it is nice and brown all over. Remove to a plate.

With the burner on high, deglaze the pan with the red wine – scraping the bottom with a whisk to get all of that wonderful flavor up.

When the bottom of the pan is sufficiently deglazed, place the roast back into the pan and add enough beef stock to cover the meat halfway (about 2 to 3 cups). Add in the onion and the carrots, as well as 3 or 4 sprigs of fresh rosemary and about 3 sprigs of fresh thyme.

Cover and roast in a 275F oven for 3-4 hours.


Cheers & Hugs,