Mary Ann's Blog

Sugar Cookie Secrets

At holiday baking time, I save the best for last. The last cookie on my list that is. Sugar cookies are to Christmas what chocolate rabbits are to Easter. No holiday would be without them. I have to mentally prepare myself for making them because they take so much time. …

Time To Make The Cookies

Years ago, in fact, because of my mother, I started baking Christmas cookies on October 12, Columbus Day. Mom stashed them in tin canisters and kept them in an ice cold unused room in the rambling house where I grew up. The room was off limits and notice was given that if…

Nuts About Chestnuts

Oh those chestnuts! It’s the season to use them in Granny’s turkey stuffing, in sauces and just enjoyed simple roasted. However, they can be a challenge sometimes to peel. Just recently in Verona, Italy, I was watching chestnuts being roasted over open coals o…

Three Squash Soup with Orzo

Orzo is better known as pearl barley and is a favorite addition to soup and just right in this glorious and hearty soup made with chunks of butternut and zucchini squash and pureed spaghetti squash used to thicken the soup. Lots of flavor and texture is the result. An add…

Cod That’s Good!

Need a great and so easy to make fish dish good enough for company? Baked cod fillet with tomatoes, olives and onions is a fast supper in less than 30 minutes.Mediterranean Baked Cod Serves 42 tablespoons olive oil 1 small onion, thinly sliced 1 1/4 pounds fresh cod or h…

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So Many Zucchini

Growing zucchini makes you think…long and hard. What to do with such a prolific plant!  Most of us have our favorite recipes from zucchini bread to zucchini chips and, yes even apple/zucchini pie! Do I want to be bogged down with dreaming up new ways to use th…

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How Many Ways Can You Love Blueberries

Blueberries are in and they are as New England as lobster and clams! My biggest challenge is getting to pick them from my own bushes before the birds have breakfast! I could net the bushes I suppose but that takes away from the “look” and glamour of the expe…

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Lime Time

Ten Things to do with a bag of limes 1) The juice and zest are great in a dough for butter cookies instead of vanilla extract 2) Marinate chicken and fish in lime juice with chopped garlic, parsley, onion and red pepper flakes 3) Mix the juice with chopped mint and hon…

Savoring and Saving Fresh Herbs

Now is the time to capture the flavor of fresh herbs for (dare I say it) winter cooking. Whether you have an herb garden or buy them at your favorite market, herbs can make the difference in a dish tasting just so so or really full of flavor and we all need a little tasty…

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Tips for Eating in Italy

Summertime means travel time for many people and with the dollar strong against the Euro right now, it is an ideal time to visit Italy. One of the things to look forward to is of course the food, local, regional food. Where to eat can seem like a daunting task, given the …

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Ciao Italia Family Classics

Mary Ann returns to her family's humble beginnings to bring us a treasure trove of more than 200 time-honored recipes.

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