Post image for Fennel Romano Coins & Salad Greens with Buttermilk Sriracha Dressing

Did you know that September 7th was Grandparents Day? Yes, I’m sure you all did. But here I am, a grandmother 3 times, and I’m without a clue. As usual. But the wonderful thing was, it coincided with me meeting my new granddaughter, Coralina (Coco for short), for the first time. She was born March 21st in Davis, CA and is now 5 months old. And sooooo cute. Here are some photos I took when they came to visit me in L.A. and see if you don’t agree that the level of cuteness is 12 out of 10.

Coralina 8.2014.1

Here she is, Coco, master toe grabber.

Coralina 8.2014.2

With the help of her dad, Coco the aspiring concert pianist.

Coralina 8.2014.3

In the most beloved place in the world, mommy’s arms.

Coralina 8.2014.4

Well, my salad certainly can’t compete with cute baby pictures, but I wanted you to have a recipe to take away with you. This recipe was inspired by Fine Cooking and it would make a really nice starter salad before your soup or main course. It’s pretty, the coins are crunchy and the dressing is so tasty.

Fennel Romano Coins and Salad Greens 2

I wanted to try this recipe because I was intrigued by the grated fennel component of the coins, which made them soft in the center and crispy on the outside. Also, I love my particular mix of salad greens with Italian parsley, arugula and pea shoots. You can use whatever greens you love or have on hand. Enjoy!

Fennel Romano Coins and Salad Greens 3

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Post image for Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes from Chef Mary Ellen Rae at Personal Touch Gourmet

I went to my first cooking class taught by Chef Mary Ellen Rae in April of 2010. My photos of her delicious recipes have been pinned and stumbled thousands of times, especially the Chicken, Sun-Dried Tomato and Basil Wrapped in Filo. So when Chef Mary Ellen recently invited me to a class she was teaching, which inclued her menu, I replied,”You had me at Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes!” How did she know crab cakes are one of my very favorite things?

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Korean Dak Galbi ~ Chicken Stir-Fry in Spicy Red Pepper Sauce with Gochugaru and Gochujang

Thumbnail image for Korean Dak Galbi ~ Chicken Stir-Fry in Spicy Red Pepper Sauce with Gochugaru and Gochujang August 18, 2014

Before we jump into the recipe in this post, I have some fist-pumping news. My little blog, Cook & Be Merry, launched in January of 2010, recently hit one million pageviews. That’s 1,000,000. If you had told me when I first started that I would hit that number in my lifetime, I would have fallen [...]

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NY Black & White Cookies

Thumbnail image for NY Black & White Cookies August 1, 2014

The other day I met a friend of mine for tea and we were talking about our upcoming blog posts. I asked her if she had ever heard of Black and White Cookies and she replied, “Are you kidding, I’m from New York! You can buy them everywhere, wrapped up in cellophane. Just make sure [...]

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Chipotle Swai Fillet with Rainier Cherry Salsa

Thumbnail image for Chipotle Swai Fillet with Rainier Cherry Salsa July 22, 2014

I grew up in Minnesota, the Land of 10,000 Lakes. My father was an avid fisherman, and my brother and I were included in many fishing trips from the time we were old enough. We fished from shore on little lakes, from fishing boats on big lakes, in an ice house in the dead of [...]

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Thai Beef Salad from Patricia Rose at Fresh Food in a Flash Cooking Class

Thumbnail image for Thai Beef Salad from Patricia Rose at Fresh Food in a Flash Cooking Class July 14, 2014

I am a cooking class junky. I love going to cooking classes. So imagine my happiness when I was recently invited to the Main Dish Salads Cooking Class by Patricia Rose of Fresh Food in a Flash. Her classes are hands-on and it is so fun to watch her students preparing her recipes, cutting and [...]

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Scotch Eggs with Garlic Butter Parmesan Fries

Thumbnail image for Scotch Eggs with Garlic Butter Parmesan Fries June 29, 2014

The signature or national dish of a country or state or city can be counted on to be interesting and delicious, because it has been around for ages and has been perfected by numerous cooks. A whole country can’t be wrong, can it? Unfortunately I am not going to be able to visit every country, [...]

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Oven Roasted Fries with Garlic Butter & Parmesan

Thumbnail image for Oven Roasted Fries with Garlic Butter & Parmesan June 13, 2014

Now that grilling season is here, I will be seeing quite a number of burger patties coming off the grates. There is nothing like the flavor of beef cooked over an open fire, or in my case, glowing coals, on a toasted bun with all the fixings. And what I love with my burgers are [...]

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Chile Verde with Pork & Ancho Chile Sauce

Thumbnail image for Chile Verde with Pork & Ancho Chile Sauce June 4, 2014

If you have been following along with my story, you know I moved into an apartment last January. I looked at several in the area I wanted to live, but fell in love with mine immediately. It’s interesting how you just know when it is a match. You walk from room to room and it [...]

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Grilled Shrimp & Potato Tomato Avocado Salad

Thumbnail image for Grilled Shrimp & Potato Tomato Avocado Salad May 24, 2014

Memorial Day. The kick-off of the summer grilling season. We wait all year for this day, don’t we? Well, I do. So I wanted to make a stellar salad with grilled shrimp and all my favorite salad veggies for this venerable holiday. Not only tomatoes, avocado and grilled little potatoes, but also olives and red [...]

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Springtime Apricot Cake at Grace-Marie’s Kitchen

Thumbnail image for Springtime Apricot Cake at Grace-Marie’s Kitchen May 17, 2014

Springtime Apricot Cake was the dessert recipe for the recent Easter Family Brunch class at Grace-Marie’s Kitchen at Bristol Farms in Manhattan Beach. This wonderful cake was the ending to a delicious luncheon which also included Easter Banana Muffins, Roasted Shrimp & Pineapple Salad, and “Croque-Madame” Brunch Gratin. Grace-Marie has always made such good desserts [...]

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Lamb Shepherd’s Pie & Parmesan Ricotta Potatoes

Thumbnail image for Lamb Shepherd’s Pie & Parmesan Ricotta Potatoes May 8, 2014

I’m a little late to the St. Patrick’s Day party with my Lamb Shepherd’s Pie, but it was the photos I saw during that celebration that inspired me to make my own version. So now I am suggesting Lamb Shepherd’s Pie for your Mother’s Day brunch. See how neat I worked that in? But really, [...]

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Pork Pot-Stickers with Lemon Soy Ginger Sauce

Thumbnail image for Pork Pot-Stickers with Lemon Soy Ginger Sauce April 30, 2014

About a month ago I showed you how to make your own gyoza wrappers, and then I left you hanging. You were probably thinking to yourself… but, but, but…what about filling and cooking them? Well, truly, I wouldn’t leave you in the lurch like that, but after I made them it was dark outside, so [...]

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Rib-Eye Carpaccio with Salmoriglio Oregano Sauce

Thumbnail image for Rib-Eye Carpaccio with Salmoriglio Oregano Sauce April 23, 2014

In my experience, there are two kinds of beef people. On one side of the spectrum are the rare or medium rare guys, who want theirs soft and red, possibly still kicking. And waaay on the other side, the well-done guys, who for some unfathomable reason, want theirs gray throughout with the texture of leather. [...]

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“Croque-Madame” Brunch Gratin with Asparagus & Prosciutto from Grace-Marie’s Kitchen

Thumbnail image for “Croque-Madame” Brunch Gratin with Asparagus & Prosciutto from Grace-Marie’s Kitchen April 15, 2014

“Croque-Madame” Brunch Gratin was the entrée recipe for the Easter Family Brunch class at Grace-Marie’s Kitchen at Bristol Farms in Manhattan Beach last week. I have to say, this Gratin was one of the best things I have eaten recently, with buttery crusted bread topped with Swiss cheese, prosciutto, asparagus, béchamel and a beautiful egg [...]

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4 comments Read the full article →