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Brooke
Florida
This mama cooks and bakes!
Interests: cooking, baking, sewing, quilting
Recent Activity
It tastes like summer when there is no summer to be had! Get a Mythos beer and kick back with some roasty toasty kebabs this winter season! Pork Souvlaki with Tzatziki adapted from Joshual Bousel from The Meatwave; serves 4 Marinade: 1/2 cup olive oil 2 garlic cloves, minced 4... Continue reading
Posted Nov 30, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
Oh, you Southerners and your love of relish! I used to scoff at it's ever-present status at every gathering, but once I discovered how much I love anything smothered in flavored vinegar, the once-laughed at relish became my delight! This particular relish was shared with me by my decidedly Northern... Continue reading
Posted Nov 23, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
Greek debt crisis got you (or your 401k) down? Celebrate the finer parts of Greek life with my husband's absolutely favorite dessert ever, the galaktoboureko. If the way to my man's heart is through his stomach then this dessert is the culinary equivalent of an 18 wheeler on a rocket... Continue reading
Posted Nov 16, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
I am from California, and I blame it for why I can never leave the warm US states for the cold ones. Sure, Northerners have way better apples than the packing material we call apples in Florida, but warm climates gave us my favorite fruit ever: the avocado. You can... Continue reading
Posted Nov 10, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
No time to take good photos, too busy stuffing my face with funnel cake! We have a FryDaddy (actually, a CoolDaddy, but same thing, pretty much) and I use it to make French fries about once a week. When I first purchased my fryer, I had a lot of guilt... Continue reading
Posted Sep 28, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
Do you wish you could have Thanksgiving/Christmas dinner at times that AREN'T in November or December? Don't you want Thanksgiving splendor on some busy cold February evening? Or maybe you're my mom living in Ohio where it's already cold and want some Thanksgiving stick-to-your-ribs, now, in September? Are you my... Continue reading
Posted Sep 27, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
Okay guys, check any chili snobbery at the door. We welcome all kinds of chili in the Smith household. We've had the kind with beans, the kind without beans, the vegetarian kind, the nothing-but-meat-and-tomatoes kind. We've had chili in biscuits, chili with cornbread, and chili with a giant loaf of... Continue reading
Posted Sep 21, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
When individually refrigerated bread puddings came to my grocery store, I thought I was in heaven. While they are pretty good, once I realize how easy homemade bread pudding it is and how many servings this makes, I now just make this recipe regularly about twice a month. If you... Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
I try to bake once a week for no other reason than I find baking to be therapeutic. When the stress of my work/life/study balance gets to me, there is nothing that soothes my soul quicker than baking. I wrap Jenevieve in our ring sling and place Maiya on the... Continue reading
Posted Sep 7, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
Want to know a secret? My greatest gift giving weapon is from a boxed mix. Yup, the girl who spends hours making the perfect homemade from scratch birthday cake and refuses to buy whipped cream in a spray can, makes the best candy gifts from a box. Hypocrite! I first... Continue reading
Posted Aug 31, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
My favorite vegetable growing up was zucchini squash fresh from the garden. We always seemed to have a bumper crop of these in our arid Southern California summer gardens. I loved spending sunny warm evenings in the garden path watching the bright yellow-orange blossoms of zucchini give way to tender... Continue reading
Posted Aug 24, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
I am usually not a huge fan of meals that take only 15 minutes to cook. I think many meals that only take a quarter-hour to prepare tend to rely heavily on processed ingredients. They often taste overly salty to me and I'm sure that has something to do with... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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Let me tell you what's up. PORK SATAY IS WHAT'S UP! Tom's not a big fan of superspicy food. He likes food seasoned, but not spicy. I, on the other hand, am only completely satisfied when I have to blow my runny nose and dab at my runny eyes from... Continue reading
Posted Aug 16, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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When Tom and I first met, we were both working full time and I was attending school. We were so busy during the week, on weekends we preferred to not leave the house, eschewing going out for the DVR and board games. Our kitchen cabinets were never very full of... Continue reading
Posted Aug 3, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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I live in a small-ish town in Florida. What my town lacks in size, it makes up for with culture. As an outsider, I've often viewed Central Florida as this hayseed neo-Southern state that has a dastardly combination of rednecks and angry New Jersey snowbirds. While that could still be... Continue reading
Posted Aug 3, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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Every weekend, I make a grocery list based on what meals I anticipate making in the coming week. I used to try and be democratic about what meals were selected, in the effort to secure at least ONE meal that each household member liked for the week. However, once this... Continue reading
Posted Jul 18, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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Wandering the aisles of Costco, I often shy away from purchasing perishable items because my family can't consume giant boxes of celery, pears, and coffee cake quickly enough to keep it from spoiling. However, when our local Costco started stocking giant sleeves of fresh naan (the Indian version of pita),... Continue reading
Posted Jul 8, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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These bars are what I picture eating for dessert on a balmy New England summer evening. Actually, all of the following make me think of a New England summer: navy blue & white boatneck sweaters coupled with cleanly pressed Gap khakis the movie Sabrina. The black and white one with... Continue reading
Posted Jul 4, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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This is the best garlic bread you will ever have. I am THAT confident about this. I have made garlic bread many ways over the years. Pasta dishes are my de facto meal when I don't really want to put a lot of effort into cooking. I love that pasta... Continue reading
Posted Jul 1, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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My husband Tom is allergic to shellfish. I didn't think it was a sacrifice at first because I don't eat a ton of seafood, but as it dawned on me, I remembered all the things that I like on occasion that he cannot eat at all. Fried shrimp at the... Continue reading
Posted Jun 27, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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It's funny how the recipes I remember most from my childhood are utterly unpretentious. As much as I really enjoy juggling a bunch of dishes in the kitchen to compile a gourmet meal for my family, I love the reliability and consistency of the recipes from my childhood the read... Continue reading
Posted Jun 24, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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My recurring daydream is a simple one. I imagine a nice day off with my girls and husband. I spend the morning reading with my legs draped on Tom's lap while Maiya and Jeni paint on a giant roll of butcher paper getting paint all over themselves and giggling. After... Continue reading
Posted Jun 20, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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I came to Caribbean food as an adult. My naive self was't even aware that Caribbean was its own genre of food until I was about 20, but I have yet to find an Island dish that doesn't rock my world. Island food has a great combination of spice and... Continue reading
Posted Jun 17, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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Breakfast or dessert? It's your choice! From French toast to crepes, poached eggs to savory pancakes, brunch foods have the amazing versatility of pulling double duty in your cooking repertoire. This is one of my favorites to serve because it's more custardy than French toast usually is, but the crusty... Continue reading
Posted Jun 13, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen
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In our medium-sized town, we have a couple of farmer's market and one true flea market. The flea market is my favorite, because although we have a HUGE swap meet in Daytona Beach, this little flea market we have in my town has more character. There are people selling Sharpie... Continue reading
Posted Jun 10, 2011 at Brooker Cooker in the Kitchen