lately, between me, my mother-in-law and my sister-in-law, we've been cooking the heck out of barefoot contessa cookbooks. over easter my sis-in-law started with ina's sour cream coffee cake (presented to us on a morning i told ella she couldn't have a cookie for breakfast but she could have cake. that wasn't one of my best moments). then she made us chicken piccata (so good. you'll want to do shots of the lemon sauce) and served it with mashed potatoes and while i can't find the exact barefoot contessa recipe, it goes something like this: potatoes, cream and butter. mashed. then she whipped up guacamole salad for lunch one day which would be so so so good in a tortilla.
you should print all these recipes and eat them asap.
my mother-in-law made roast loin of pork last weekend whilst entertaining my parents and craig and i. the pork is divine - it has this mustardy-thyme crust on top. i made the topping and put it on some chicken i was baking the other night and it was equally scrumptious. as an appetizer, i made pan-fried onion dip which is like the lipton onion soup dip we all grew up with but 100 times better. i used all low-fat ingredients and served it with baby carrots, broccoli, red peppers, all-bran crackers and fresh sweet potato chips from stew leonard's. i would've happily eaten the dip with a spoon, actually.
another barefoot recipe i'll be making a million times this summer is orzo with roasted vegetables. it's easy and versatile and makes a ton. it's good warm, cold or room temp. i omitted the eggplant (ick) and added in a yellow pepper. instead of feta cheese i used some gorgeous fresh mozzarella i had on hand. i want to use goat cheese next time i make it. also, the recipe says 1/3 cup of lemon juice is 2 lemons but i think you should use 3 or 4 lemons. it's lovely on its own or with leftover chicken cut up in it or maybe even tofu, if you're crazy like that.
finally finally finally, i made ina's peanut butter chocolate chunk cookies. now, chocochip cookies are pretty sacred to me and i have ONE recipe that i'm devoted to but i went out on a limb with these cookies and i'll say they're good. not great, but good (as if i haven't shoved 14 in my mouth already today). not enough peanut butter if you ask me!