White Peach and Blueberry Buckle

White Peach and Blueberry Buckle

White Peach and Blueberry Buckle

In truth this comes out tasting very much like a coffee cake, but saying, “I’m making a buckle” is just so much more fun.

I adapted a recipe from Taste of Home to include white peaches and added a little more milk and vanilla to to the batter.

Served shortly after coming out of the oven with some vanilla ice cream, this is really tasty.


  • ¼ cup butter, softened
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¾ milk (maybe more as needed)
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1 cup white peaches, peeled, and sliced into pieces


  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • ½ cup flour
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ⅓ cup cold butter, cubed


  1. Preheat oven to 375°
  2. In a small bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add vanilla.  Beat in egg, combine the flour, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition.  Fold in fruit, pour into greased 9-in square baking pan.
  3. For topping, in a small bowl combine the sugar flour and cinnamon; cut in butter until crumbly.  Sprinkle over batter.
  4. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.  Cool on a wire rack.

Approx. 9 servings

Weight Watchers Points: 5 (excluding ice cream)


Poached Salmon with Artichoke Confit

Poached Salmon with Artichoke Confit

Poached Salmon with Artichoke Confit

In celebration of our 17 year anniversary, I wanted to make something extra delicious and also try something completely new.  As usual Bon Appetit provided lots to choose from.

Because it was a weeknight, I opted to buy prepared artichoke hearts rather than going through the process detailed in the recipe.  It worked okay, although I’d say if you’re going for the faster method artichoke bottoms would probably work better than artichoke hearts.

We served it with rustic Italian olive bread and a delicious pinot noir.  Tasted like celebrated love.



  • 5 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided
  • 4 artichokes
  • 6 sprigs thyme
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  •  cups olive oil
  • ½ cup fresh fava beans (from about ½ lb. pods) or frozen, thawed
  • Kosher salt
  • ½ cup shelled fresh peas (from about ½ lb. pods) or frozen, thawed
  • ¾ cup green olives, coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup pea shoots (tendrils) or fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves with tender stems
  • ½ cup torn fresh mint leaves
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  • 4 sprigs flat-leaf parsley
  • 4 sprigs dill
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 6-oz. skinless salmon fillets


  • Add 3 Tbsp. lemon juice to a large bowl of cold water. Working with 1 artichoke at a time, remove tough dark outer leaves. Using a serrated knife, trim top of artichoke to just above the heart. Trim stem, leaving about 1” intact. Using a paring knife or vegetable peeler, remove dark outer layer from stem. Halve artichoke lengthwise and scoop out choke with a spoon. Transfer artichoke to lemon water to prevent discoloration.


  • Drain artichokes; pat dry. Cook with thyme, garlic, bay leaves, peppercorns, and oil in a large saucepan over medium heat until oil around artichokes is bubbling. Reduce heat and cook, turning artichokes occasionally, until stems are tender when pierced with a knife, 15–20 minutes; let cool in oil.
  • Meanwhile, if using fresh fava beans, cook in a medium saucepan of boiling salted water until tender, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a colander set in a bowl of ice water. Drain and peel; place in a large bowl. (If using frozen fava beans, cook 2 minutes; do not peel.)
  • Return water in saucepan to a boil; add peas and cook until tender, about 2 minutes. Drain; transfer to colander in ice water. Drain and add to bowl with fava beans.
  • Using a slotted spoon, transfer artichokes to bowl with peas and fava beans. Add ¼ cup artichoke cooking oil, olives, pea shoots, mint, and remaining 2 Tbsp. lemon juice; toss and season with salt and pepper.
  • DO AHEAD: Artichokes can be poached 1 day ahead. Keep in oil; cover and chill.


  • Bring parsley, dill, lemon slices, lemon juice, wine, peppercorns, and 3 cups water to a simmer in a large saucepan over medium heat; season with salt. Add salmon; cover. Reduce heat and simmer gently until just opaque throughout, 6–8 minutes. Using a large spatula, remove salmon and lemon slices from poaching liquid. Serve salmon with artichoke salad and lemon slices.
Culinary Travel Party: China

Culinary Travel Party: China

China-inspired Deliciousness

Last night was that wonderful time again when Cass, Darlene, Monica, Brian and I go through the kitchen portal to some far-off exotic land to sample the cuisine.  Last night was China and it was delicious.  Some 15 HOURS later and I’m still full.

Here’s the menu:


– Homemade Pork Potstickers These little suckers are harder to pleat that you’d think, unless you’re Darlene.  Some were perfect, some were misshapen but all were delicious.  I love the process of frying, then steaming, then frying again — soft on top, crispy on the bottom.  We ate two pans full with a sauce made from chili oil, rice vinegar, soy sauce and red pepper garlic paste.


Green Onion Pancake

Green Onion Pancake– Like the filling for the potstickers the pancake dough arrived magically andexpertly created.  My contribution was rolling out the dough before they were fried to perfection.  We used the same sauce as the potstickers.

Ma Po Tofu

Ma Po Tofu – Brian has been fascinated with the effects of Sichuan peppercorns and wanted to make something that used them.  He added baby corn and bamboo shoots and fried the tofu in chili oil before adding it to the mix. The result was delicious, though he wanted it to be spicier.  I’ll be having some for lunch.

We rounded out dinner with baby bok choy sautéed with ginger and garlic.

Monica discovered our new favorite late summer cocktail: Red Lotus: equal parts vodka and lychee liqueur with a splash of cranberry for color.

Dessert was homemade Five Spice Ice Cream with Darlene’s gingerbread cake, which worked very well together.  Because dinner conversation tends to be about food and travel we discovered that Chinese Five Spice is made up of star anise, cinnamon, cloves, ground fennel and ground sichuan peppercorns.  We’d used the little tingly buggers a second time without even knowing.

Italy Dinner

Culinary Travel Party: Italy

Slow-grilled Pork Ribs, Homemade Pasta with Sugo, Sautéed Broccoli Rabe with Fava Beans and Braised White Beans

Slow-grilled Pork Ribs, Homemade Pasta with Sugo, Sautéed Broccoli Rabe with Fava Beans and Braised White Beans

One of my most anxiously-awaitited evenings on an ongoing basis, is our Culinary Travel dinner party.  Cass, Darlene, Monica, Brian and I get together periodically and choose a cultural theme for dinner.  Our collective love for travel and food would have us globe-trotting non-stop.  Unfortunately, the pesky day-to-day concerns like employment and financial reality keep us from being our true selves, but somehow we manage .

There will ultimately be recipes posted, but in the meantime while I gather them, here is the menu:

Cara Cara Triple Sec (which Darlene made), Vodka, Meyer Lemon juice and soda

Garlic Fava Bean Crostini
Prosciutto Wrapped Cantaloupe
Homemade Papardelle with Sugo
Slow Cooked Italian Rub Pork Ribs
Sherry Braised White Beans with Onions and Fresh Thyme
Sautéed Broccoli Rabe