Inner Chef

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Bacon & Egg Potato Salad

Bacon & Egg Potato Salad                            Serves: 8

6 cups cubed red potatoes (about 2 ½ pounds)

4 hard cooked eggs, chopped

1 small onion, chopped small

4 bacon slices, cooked and crumbled

2-3 stalks celery, diced small

1 cup real mayo

2 Tbsp. dill pickle relish

3-5 tsp. yellow mustard

½ tsp salt

½ tsp celery salt

½ tsp pepper

  1. Place potatoes in a Dutch oven; cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and cook for 10-15 minutes or until tender. Drain and cool.
  2. Place potatoes in large bowl. Add the eggs, onion, and celery.
  3. In a small bowl, combine mayo, relish, mustard, and seasonings. Pour over potato mixture and toss gently to coat. Gently toss in bacon pieces. Refrigerate until chilled.





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Rosemary Spaghetti with Roasted Asparagus


Rosemary Spaghetti with Roasted Asparagus

(Melissa’s Everyday Cooking with Organic Produce)

Here is the original recipe, as in the book. I used a lemon-infused olive oil and added diced chicken. This serves about 4-6 people.


1 pound asparagus, trimmed 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1⁄2 teaspoon coarse salt, such as kosher 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided use (see Cook’s Note) 1 large yellow onion, coarsely chopped 5 medium cloves garlic, sliced 1 1⁄2 cups chicken broth or vegetable broth 1 1⁄2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves 1 pound spaghetti, thick spaghetti preferred 1⁄4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus cheese for optional topping Salt and freshly ground black pepper Garnish: 8 sprigs fresh rosemary


  1. Adjust oven rack to upper third of oven. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spread asparagus on rimmed baking sheet in a single layer; brush with oil and sprinkle with salt. Roast until fork-tender, about 7 to 12 minutes, shaking pan halfway through cooking to redistribute stalks (roasting time varies depending on thickness of asparagus). Cut stalks into 1 1/2-inch pieces. Set aside.
  2. In large, deep skillet melt 4 tablespoons butter on medium-low heat. Add onion and cook until nicely browned, about 15 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Add chicken broth or vegetable broth and chopped rosemary; increase heat to high and reduce by half.
  3. Meanwhile, bring large pot of salted water to boil on high heat. Add spaghetti and cook according to package directions until al dente (tender with a little bite); drain, reserving 2 tablespoons pasta water.
  4. Add pasta and reserved cooking water to butter mixture. Add cheese, 1 tablespoon butter and asparagus. Gently toss. Season with salt and plenty of pepper. Garnish each serving with rosemary sprig.

Inner Chef Note: I made a homemade Roasted Garlic Butter:

Cut about 1/3 of the top of a large garlic bunch, drizzle a little Extra Virgin Olive Oil on the cut part and wrap garlic bunch in foil, open side up. Open foil just a bit so that the garlic can caramelize. Bake in a 400 degree oven for about 35-45 minutes, until garlic is tender. remove from oven and let rest. When cool enough to handle, squeeze garlic from paper. Add to unsalted butter and enjoy.


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Product Review: Yoshi Grill & Bake Mats

Yoshi Grill & Bake Mats

(Douglas Combs, Inner Chef Member)

Alright now went to Walmart (aka Wally World) the other day and came across the Yoshi Grill & Baking Mats®. Been a bit of a skeptic on these “As Seen on TV” items, but I went ahead and bought one.

I used it tonight for cooking chicken on the grill. I was duly impressed. Most of us know chicken can be very hard to cook on a grill without it flaring up because of the grease drippings. The Yoshi Mat did a very good job of controlling the flare ups, it cooked very evenly and it kept the chicken moist rendering great flavor.

Very underrated product, so if you’re interested, here is what they look like:

Yoshi Grill & Bake Mats

Yoshi Grill & Bake Mats


Yoshi Grill & Bake Mats

Yoshi Grill & Bake Mats

Douglas is an Inner Chef member and has given Inner Chef permission to post this product review. Douglas Combs was compensated by Yoshi for this review.


No Bake Cookies

No-Bake Cookies

2 Cups granulated sugar

8 Tablespoon (1 stick) unsalted butter

½ cups milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

⅓ cup baking cocoa

½ cup peanut butter

3 cups Quaker® Oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)


In medium saucepan, combine sugar, butter, milk, and cocoa.

Bring to boil over medium heat, stirring frequently. Continue boiling 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter, oats and vanilla.

Drop by tablespoonfuls onto waxed paper. Let stand until firm. Store tightly covered.

Serving Tips: *If using old fashioned oats, cool mixture in saucepan 5 minutes.


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Winter Produce

Winter Produce

We automatically know what produce is in season during the warmer months and how expensive they become during the colder months. You may be surprised to find out the delicious produce that is in season for us during the winter. You can find the produce at a cheaper price and still get great flavors for your cooking and baking needs.

  1. Mustard greens
  2. Collard greens
  3. Kale
  4. Sweet potatoes
  5. Bartlett pears
  6. Anjou pears
  7. Fennel bulbs
  8. Pineapple
  9. Cranberries
  10. Brussels Sprouts
  11. Lemon
  12. Lime
  13. Clementine
  14. Grapefruit
  15. Blood oranges
  16. Navel oranges
  17. Turnips
  18. Rutabaga
  19. Parsnip

So, grab some winter produce and start experiencing the amazement of flavor.

Many supermarkets and local produce shops will allow you to try produce that is new to you. Just ask. Don’t let the look of something shy you away from tasting it. You may be pleasantly surprised.


winter produce2




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Quinoa Caprese Casserole

Quinoa Caprese Casserole       5 servings

(Better Homes & Garden 16th Edition)

Nonstick cooking spray

2 cups water

1 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained

½ tsp. salt

1 ½ cups purchased marinara sauce

2 Tbsp. tomato paste

⅔ cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese

⅓ cup whipping cream

½ tsp. crushed red pepper

¼ tsp. black pepper

1 ½ cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (4 oz.)

¾ cup shredded fresh basil

6 oz. fresh mozzarella, cut into ½-inch cubes

Crusty Italian bread, optional

  1. PREHEAT oven to 350°. Lightly coat a 2-quart square baking dish with cooking spray, set aside. In a medium saucepan, combine the water, quinoa and salt. Bring to boiling; reduce heat and simmer, covered for about 15 minutes or until water is absorbed. Let stand for 5 minutes. Uncover and fluff with a fork; set aside.
  2. COMBINE marinara sauce and tomato paste in a large saucepan. Stir over low heat until smooth. Stir in Parmesan cheese, cream, crushed red pepper and black pepper. Bring to a boil; remove from heat. Add cooked quinoa; mix gently. Using a rubber spatula, fold in ¾ cup of the tomatoes, the shredded mozzarella cheese and ¼ cup of the basil. Spoon quinoa mixture into the prepared baking dish, spreading evenly. Top with fresh mozzarella cheese.
  3. BAKE, uncovered, about 30 minutes or until heated through. Top with remaining ¾ cup tomatoes and the remaining ½ cup basil. If desired, serve with bread.
Better Homes & Garden

Better Homes & Garden



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