December’s Entertaining Tips: How to Gift Homemade Granola

Ok… This “How To” post is more about homemade gifting than it is about entertaining… but it does make a great hostess gift or party favor!  Does that count?!  Or better yet, make it with a group of friends so ya’ll can tackle some gifting together. This homemade granola makes a great gift because… It is the best darn granola I have ever tasted! It looks adorable packaged in mason jars.  (Those tags though… *Swoon*) It stays fresh in an airtight container for up to 6 weeks!! Shipping friendly! (See reason above ^^) Easy to make HUGE quantities at once! AND…. Its not Christmas cookies or candy. We all get…

Creamy Horseradish Mashed Potatoes

These mashed potatoes are made to accompany the herb crusted pot roast.  The hint of horseradish balances and complements the richness of the pot roast and the mashed potatoes provide the perfect pillowy base to soak up all of the amazing juices from the roast. Yes, these mashed potatoes are ah-mazing on their own; they are creamy pillows of mashed potato after all.  But with the pot roast…. the combination of the two honestly are one of the best things I have ever eaten.  To put this in perspective, I don’t even like meat, and I would put this in the top 5 best things I have ever tasted.  The…

Ultimate Herb Crusted Pot Roast

Last week we saw our first glimpses of unmistakably winter weather.  Frost on rooftops, icy windshields, slick roads, and ice crystals in the ground that went crunch on my morning trail run. If you live in the Pacific northwest, you will understand this.  These cool crisp days are some of the most beautiful!  The most breathtakingly beautiful!  You can see the snow capped mountains so clearly it looks like they are closer than ever before! Winter weather has me craving winter food!  Last week, the roasted butternut squash mac ‘n cheese.  This week: pot roast. Ya’ll, I am not a big meat eater.  I was vegetarian for years, but you…

Soft and Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies

I want to give a little update to my chewy ginger molasses cookie recipe, including some new photos!  Its the same suuuuper soft and chewy recipe filled with extra molasses, ginger (two kinds!), and brown sugar! Just with a little photo facelift. Also, I said it before, but I would just like to reiterate it.  Gingerbread cookies and I aren’t buds –  Way too tedious!  They are a lot of work for something dry and not all that delicious.  These chewy ginger molasses cookies take the best parts of gingerbread flavor and put it in a soft, roll and bake style cookie.  Sign me up for that! Chewy on the…
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Mascarpone Cheesecake with Gingersnap Crust and Maple Cranberry Compote

If someone said, “What is your favorite dessert of all time, Maria?”  My answer would be  this Mascarpone Cheesecake. Even as a kid, I loved cheesecake.  I remember requesting it on my birthday as young as 7.  But those cheesecakes weren’t this cheesecake.  This cheesecake made me fall in love alllll over again. I would explain my discovery of mascarpone cheesecake this way….  Its like really liking your new mini-van until you take a Porsche for a spin…  For the sake of my sad little metaphor, we will call this the Porsche of cheesecakes.  It feels fitting; this cheesecake is a little bit sophisticated (don’t worry, its still super easy…
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