Harbingers of Spring

My Favorite Things - A Cup of Kathy

A carpet of snow blankets the ground. The temperature on a good day hovers around the freezing mark. On bad days, it dips into the mid-20s. On really bad days, the temperature plummets into single digits. And then you factor in the wind chill. Welcome to winter in New England. Since I’ve lived my whole life here, you’d think I’d be used to it. Continue reading

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The Big Chill

My Favorite Things - A Cup of Kathy

Cold. That would be an understatement to describe the weather here in New England. It’s been frigid some days; others have been downright cold; some days have actually reached freezing point of 32 degrees Fahrenheit; and some are considered chilly. And please don’t mention the snow! I’ve learned to enjoy the chilly days, LOL, as I think about the coming of Spring. Continue reading

McCormick Scores Again!

Recipes - A Cup of Kathy

Chicken.  So versatile…so tasty…and served so often in our home.

And because of our fondness for chicken, and my ability to buy boneless, skinless chicken breasts for between $1.69 – $1.99-a-pound with regularity, my recipes needed a little refresh.

I’d had family-pleasing success using the McCormick Bag and Season for Pot Roast, so I was inspired to pick up their Bag and Season for Chicken during my last trip to Stop & Shop. Continue reading

Beef – From Bottom To Top

Recipes - A Cup of Kathy

Why have I never made a roast before? I asked myself that recently while in Stop & Shop as I admired a bottom round roast that I couldn’t pass up. What had my family and I been missing? I knew McCormick made cooking bags and spice combinations that would make this an easy and tasty dish, which inspired me to give making my first roast a whirl.

And we were all glad I did. Continue reading

GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL!

My Favorite Things - A Cup of Kathy

I’ve always liked to read. As a young girl, I devoured Nancy Drew books. I couldn’t get enough of Nancy and the mysteries she solved.

It was only natural that I gravitated toward literature during my pursuit of undergraduate and graduate-level college degrees. The literature world was my oyster. I took undergraduate courses in Medieval Lit, Russian Lit, Modern European Lit, Lit for Young Adults. I took three major literary figures classes – Shakespeare, Chaucer, Milton – with the same professor, who made those authors’ words come alive. I studied and enjoyed F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, and Norman Mailer (though I felt he must’ve gotten paid by the word). I found I didn’t much care for Victorian Lit (I dropped the class) or D. H. Lawrence (nor did I care for the professor). I also took writing classes that included freshman composition and advanced composition. Continue reading

All In A Stew

Recipes - A Cup of Kathy

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the meals my mom made as I look for meal inspiration for my own family.

Mom’s spaghetti and meatballs, macaroni and cheese, chicken soup, Swedish meatballs, pork chops, stuffed peppers, the list of her delicious meals is endless, whether for a weekday dinner or a large holiday gathering. And then it hit me – mom’s beef stew, rich, thick, loaded with potatoes, celery, carrots, onions, mushrooms and meat…and dumplings floating on top. I also remembered that somehow, I always managed to get the serving with the bay leaf, lol. Continue reading

A Perfect Fall Day

My Favorite Things - A Cup of Kathy

Tuesday (October 27th) was the perfect autumn day for a socially responsible face-to-face in Old Wethersfield with my dearest friend, Elaine. We’ve not seen each other as much as we would like during the pandemic, so we seized the opportunity this gorgeous day provided.

We strolled and explored the picturesque charms, heritage and rich history of this classic New England village’s colonial homes, museums and quaint shops featuring antiques, handmade crafts and artwork. We also marveled at the creativity of the record-setting 60 or so offerings constructed by residents comprising the 25th annual Scarecrows Along Main in Old Wethersfield, sponsored by the Old Wethersfield Shopkeepers Association. Continue reading

Bagging It

My Favorite Things - A Cup of Kathy

Bags, glorious bags.  Believe me, I’ve got bags.  Not under my eyes, mind you – these bags are in the trunk of my car. 

I started the “collection” when I bought a couple of reusable bags for use when shopping at Aldi after they opened a store in our town…and then the state announced, in the interest of keeping plastic out of our landfills, plastic grocery bags would be subject to a 10-cent tax.  I figured that though the state officials said the tax was enacted to combat the effects plastic was having on our environment, it was really about helping to bridge the looming gap in the state budget.

Continue reading

Punched Up Potato Salad

Recipes - A Cup of Kathy

Celery. Celery. My queendom for a bunch of celery.

I was making potato salad to go with last night’s dinner – and horror of horrors – there was no celery in my fridge. How can that be, and more importantly, what can I use to bring flavor, color and crunch to my potato salad?

I needed inspiration and I needed it fast. Continue reading

Easing Into Autumn

My Favorite Things - A Cup of Kathy

I’m trying to hold onto summer and ease my way into fall, but the days are getting shorter and the longer nights bring a bit of a chill. Fall has arrived, and while I’m trying to soak up every last sunny and sandy minute I can, I’m also longing for the enjoyment of local fairs, festivals, the Eastern States Exposition (The Big E), and fair food.

Oh yes, the many delicious and tempting aromas of the varied fair food offerings. The delights and calories of fried Snickers, chocolate ganache cream puffs, giant smoked turkey legs, and bacon cheeseburger, chicken parm, and taco chompers – all among my favorites. And caramel apples. I can’t forget caramel apples. There’s nothing like hearing the crunch as I bite into a crisp, tart Granny Smith apple that’s been richly coated in sticky, gooey caramel. Continue reading