Five-Spice Stir-Fried Soba Noodles

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What comes to mind when you think of the word “vegan”?  If you’re like me, your first thoughts don’t immediately go to words like “tasty”, innovative”, or “satisfying”.  As a little girl in the 70’s I remember going to a few vegan restaurants with my mom and her friends…let’s just say I wasn’t anxious to return!  Of course, over the years I’ve come to learn that vegetarian and vegan recipes use the same fresh produce, herbs and spices I use in my everyday cooking, with a few tweaks and replacements here and there.   My perspectives became even more positive when I had the opportunity to read Vegan: The Cookbook.

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4th of July Fun Foods

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I can hardly believe it’s JULY already ~ can you?!?  It is, though, and that means it’s time for another edition of The Recipe Box in Direct Magazine!  Summer is a great time to get kids into the kitchen, and Independence Day lends itself to making these easy and patriotic treats using chocolate candy melts and sprinkles.  Be ready to hear as many “oooo’s and ahhhh’s” for your creations as you do for the fireworks! Just for you, I’ve included a couple of super fun bonus ideas for the quintessential outdoor summer treat – s’mores – scroll down for the recipes!

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Peanut Butter Blondie Ice Cream Sandwiches

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Father’s Day means grillin’ and chillin’ in the summertime heat, and Peanut Butter Blondie Ice Cream Sandwiches fit the bill for a cool finish to any BBQ celebration. The blondies are rich and chewy, perfect for pairing with ice cream. Served plain, rolled in crunchy toppings, or dipped in chocolate, they’re a surefire way to let Dad know what a special guy he is!  They’re such fun to make, and they’re my feature for The Recipe Box in the June issue of Direct Magazine.

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Mother’s Day Lemon Pudding Cake

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Show mom lots of love with rich and delicious Lemon Pudding Cake, May’s edition of The Recipe Box in Direct Magazine.  A batch of my favorite whipped cream cheese frosting makes both strawberry filling and lemon icing to complement it perfectly. It’s so easy that kids can make it with a bit of help, and Mom will be delighted with this extra-special dessert!

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Sweet & Smoky Pear & Onion Pizza

Sweet & Smoky Pear & Onion Pizza 1

Disclosure: OXO provided the featured kitchen tools for me to use and review for this post.  I was not compensated in any other way, and all the opinions are my own.

I don’t think I’ve met anyone who doesn’t like pizza.  It’s a staple in busy homes and college residences, and more artisan pizzerias are opening everywhere you look.  I’m not complaining, though – bready crust, gooey melty cheese, a plethora of different topping combinations to suit one’s every mood…what’s not to love?  But as much as I enjoy eating a delicious pizza out or having one delivered to my door, I am much more likely to make my own pizza at home now.  I love making the dough with the added flavors of fresh herbs, and experimenting with different cheeses and toppings.  And now that I have some awesome new pizza tools that make prepping and serving super fun and easy, I’m even more likely to skip the restaurant and create my own “U Make – U Bake” pizzas!

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