Maple Cranberry Sauce with Pecans, Orange, and Apple

Maple Cranberry Sauce

Maple Cranberry Sauce with Pecans, Orange, and Apple


Mmm Thanksgiving—it just wouldn’t be the same without cranberry sauce. When I was little, I couldn’t understand how the adults could eat whole berry sauce. The good sauce was the one that came out of a can and you could slice it, that’s what I thought. Now I wonder how I could have eaten that and liked it..agh!

For years I’ve been making my mother’s cranberry orange sauce, and then I’ve throw in pecans and delicious chunks of apples or pears, to give added texture and flavor. This year, I decided to try the sauce with a natural sugar. Thinking that honey would lend too strong a flavor, I opted for maple syrup. This resulted in a sauce that was a little less tart than other years, but the maple syrup adds a layer of complexity that I find very interesting. I keep going back to taste it to compare it with my memory of past sauces. Each time I taste it the conclusion is the same, it’s very good! And, if I’m not careful there won’t be much left for my guests. Try Maple Cranberry Sauce with Pecans, Orange, and Apple. I’m sure you’ll love it! And don’t worry about the alcohol. It will evaporate in the cooking process, and leave a 5-Star flavor.


Prep Time: 8 minutes     Cooking Time: 10 minutes       Servings: 8-10



¼ cup orange juice

¼ cup brandy, or Gran Marnier

¼ cup plus one tablespoon water

2/3 cup maple syrup, grade B

12 ounce bag cranberries (sorted and washed)

½ cup roughly chopped pecans

1 apple, peeled, seeded, and roughly chopped

peel of one orange, finely chopped (Do not use the white underside of the peel)



1. Bring the first 5 ingredients to a boil, and then add the remaining ingredients.

2. Cook until the cranberries start to pop, about 10 minutes. Remove it from the stove top and place it in a serving bowl. The sauce thickens as it cools


This recipe is also posted at Slightly Indulgent Tuesday



Avocado Tzatziki- 50 Women Game Changers – Cat Cora #48

Avocado Tzatziki

Avocado Tzatziki


This week is #48 following Gourmet Online’s “50 Women Game Changers” and it’s dedicated to Cat Cora, who gained visibility on the television program The Iron Chef. Follow along with me and other bloggers as we learn more about her.

Of Greek heritage, Cat Cora was raised in Mississippi. Like some of the previous game changers, she had restaurant life in her blood; both her father and her grandfather were restaurateurs. Her cooking career began when she attended the Culinary Institute of America. Afterwards, she apprenticed at various restaurants in New York: the Arcadia, and the Beekman Tavern; and in France with two three-star chefs, George Blanc and Roger Verge. She made the move to Napa Valley, California, to be Chef at Bistro Don Giovanni. However, if you asked Cat she would say that it was her family, and her Greek Community that had “an incalculable” influence on her career.

Television has treated Cora well. Besides the Iron Chef America, Cora has appeared on the Melting Pot with Rocco Di Spirito, Kitchen Accomplished, Celebrity Cooking Showdown, and her own show My Country My Kitchen: Greece, Date Plate, to name a few. And she has three cookbooks: Cooking From the Hip: Fast, Easy, Phenomenal Meals; and Classics with a Twist and Cat Cora’s Kitchen: Favorite Meals for Family and Friends. Her approach in these books is fast, healthy, and family friendly recipes.

Cat used her notoriety to create Chefs for Humanity a non-profit organization that attempts to offer resources to communities in times of need, and she works with Michelle Obama to promote healthy eating in schools.

The avocado tzatziki recipe is courtesy the Cat Cora website, which I have slightly modified. It makes a delicious sauce to spread on a falafel, or to accompany roasted chicken, or meat.


Prep Time: 15 minutes

Yield: about 3-1/2 cups

Servings: 7 servings of ½ cup



2 cups plain non-fat Greek yogurt

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and grated

1-1/2 avocados (peeled and diced)



In a medium bowl, mix together the first five ingredients. Next, add the cucumber and avocado and stir well. Refrigerate before serving.


Check out what these other great cooks have come up with:

Val – More Than Burnt Toast, Joanne – Eats Well With Others, Taryn – Have Kitchen Will Feed, Susan – The Spice Garden, Heather – Girlichef, Miranda – Mangoes and Chutney, Jeanette – Healthy Living,  Mary – One Perfect Bite, Kathleen –Bake Away with Me  Sue – The View from Great Island, Barbara – Movable Feasts, Kathleen – Gonna Want Seconds,   Linda A – There and Back Again, Mireya – My Healthy Eating Habits,  Veronica – My Catholic Kitchen,  Annie– Most Lovely Things , Claudia – Journey of an Italian Cook,  Amrit Beetles Kitchen, Alyce – More Time at the Table, Jill – Saucy Cooks, Sarah – Everything in the Kitchen Sink
This recipe is also posted at Full Plate Thursday and Pennywise Platter


Red Bell Pepper Sauce

Red Bell Pepper Sauce

Red Bell Pepper Sauce

Red Pepper sauce is so delicious and easy to make. It goes especially well with vegetables, poultry, pork, or use over potatoes instead of gravy. You may see many bell pepper sauce recipes that use see use cream, but dairy-free red bell pepper sauce is flavorful and creamy without the addition of the unwanted saturated fat from that cream has. And by consuming this sauce you’ll also enjoy the wrinkle protection that red peppers offer, which you can read about in this recipe for roasted red bell peppers. So go ahead and try it!

This sauce goes perfectly with Turkey meatloaf (coming next week) and sautéed Swiss chard.


1 to 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil

½ medium onion

1 clove garlic, peeled and sliced

1 tablespoon flour (white or whole wheat)

2 red bell peppers (*optional – use 1 bell pepper and 2 Roma tomatoes for a more acidic             taste)


White pepper


1.) Add the olive oil to a 2-quart pot and then add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds. Next, add the onion and stir until they are translucent.

2.) Add the flour and stir for three minutes. Next, add the chopped peppers and water to cover. Stir frequently and cook approximately for 20-25 minutes, adding water as needed.

3.) Blend the peppers when they are very tender. I like to use a stick hand blender, but can use a stand blender. If your blender is not powerful enough to blend the sauce to a smooth cream, you may need to strain the sauce to remove any remaining pepper skin.

Add salt and white pepper to taste.