Category Archives: Recipe Instant Queue

RIQ: Harry Potter Edition

In continued celebration of the man with the lightening scar, here are some amazing treats. I am in awe of these bloggers- these ideas are so creative! Some are straight out of the books, others are homages to the wizarding world. A slight word of caution: this post is heavy on the dessert, low in health food.

5. Cauldron Cakes

via the Pastry Affair

What did I tell you! Simply magical!! Click on over to the Pastry Affair to get the recipe and how to.  There is some seriously amazing goodie’s on Kristin’s blog- so don’t miss out!

4. Pasties

via Diamonds for Dessert

Diamonds for Dessert has recipes for both Cornish and Pumpkin pasties, a Hogwarts must. Talk about thorough! Check out some of her other Harry Potter inspired recipes!

3. Butterbeer Cupcakes

via Amy Bites

Buttery, butterscotchy cake with butterscotch buttercream? Count me in.  Click on over to Amy Bites.

2. Harry, Ron & Hermione Cookies

via Bake at 350

Get the whole tutorial and some other great ideas over at Bake at 350. (Did I mention that Bridget is pretty much my sugar cookie hero? LOVE her blog!)

1. Butterbeer

via Bakingdom

I’m with Darla on this one. I chose her recipe largely because it does not contain clarified butter. I LOVE butter and I felt weird about pouring it into my soda. So I went with Darla’s advice and used imitation butter flavoring. All things in moderation, and I think it really makes the difference here.

And if you still haven’t had enough, check out some of these great ideas over at the Leaky Cauldron, the official location of all Harry Potterdom. (Yes, I’m a member. I told you I was obsessed!)


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RIQ: Nostalgic Fourth

The 4th of July is a nostalgic summer holiday. At least it is for me. I’ve been thinking about some of my favorite 4th of July memories, and recipes that would best represent them. Five recipes, five memories.

5. Firework Cookies

Martha's Fireworks cookies

I grew up on a small cul de sac, and in the summer all of the kids would play in the street. We’d bounce from house to house, sampling the food offerings. My mom always had Kool-Aid and sandwiches. I loved to sneak across the street, where our neighbors always had the soft Lighthouse cookies that I loved. These sugar cookies are a more sophisticated replica and have a beautiful Americana feel.

4. Yesterdog Hotdogs

Yesterdog featured on SeriousEats

The summer before college, a group of us met at Yesterdog before the display was held. I remember how happy I was, ready to head to college, bursting with energy and pride.  That happy high forever linked with Yesterdog.

3.Strawberry and Lemon Verbena Summer Drink

from Maria Teresa Jorge, via Food52

Kool-Aid is quintessential summer and I want to remember it that way. I always loved the “Pink Swimmingo” kind. I loved it, begged for it whenever my mom went to the grocery store. Maria Teresa Jorge’s fizzy pink drink is the perfect substitution. I added gin (Maria suggests rum) when I tested the recipe and it was perfection.

2. Flag Cake

Ina Garten's classic

Must have flag cake. The one of my childhood generally involved jello and Cool Whip, so this is a vast improvement. You could go with a cool reinvention of the classic, like this one from Baked Bree or this one from 17andBaking. But I like Ina’s. It’s homey. And it has lots of cream cheese. Win-Win.

1. Sour Cherry Slab Pie

Deb's Sour Cherry Slab Pie

Being from Michigan, Sour Cherries are our thing.  Except we call them Tart Cherries. There is a big Cherry festival in Traverse City, generally near the 4th of July. Because what better way to celebrate Michigan’s proud fruit than to have a festival?  And this cherry pie is portable. Handheld, even. Perfection. Once again, Deb is the master.


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RIQ: korean Tacos

I’ve got just one recipe for you today. Mostly because I’m across the pond, on vacation. Mr. Radar let me tag along on one of his very important trips to London.

Korean Fusion Tacos

via the Steamy Kitchen

Every summer, Mr. Radar and I visit the Finger Lakes region of Upstate New York. Mr. Radar generally works a few days at a fancy-pants engineering school, and I get to visit my family and drink lots of wine.  The Americana Vineyard has a WONDERFUL cafe, and Mr. Radar ordered kimchi tacos. And I’ve been trying to recreate the experience ever since. Steamy Kitchen’s recipe looks fabulous and extra BBQ sauce is okay with us.


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RIQ: Arugula

I planted a lot of great vegetables in the community garden this year, but many were lost to the weirdo storms and torrential downpours. But my arugula survived. Thrived, even. I’m so proud of my baby lettuces, I don’t want to relegate them to a salad. So here some new uses for arugula.

5. In Potato Salad

Arugula Potato Salad, via theKitchn

All that starch could use a little green, right? Potato salad with dill and arugula at theKitchn.

4.  In a Panini

Delicious Panini from Phoebe of Big Girls, Small Kitchen

Prosciutto and Fontina panini with arugula and pickled shallots. Yes, Please. Phoebe and Cara have a new cookbook, too. It looks really great and frugal. My favorite kind of recipes.

3. Pile it on top of pizza.

the Pioneer Woman continues to amaze.

Figs, Prosciutto, Parmesan? Count me in. I think Gorgonzola would also be a delicious choice here instead of the Parmesan. just saying!

2. In Pasta

Jamie Oliver's Spaghetti with Prawns & Rocket

A little recipe from everyone’s favorite Brit. It looks good, doesn’t it?

1. With a Great Grain

via Tea and Cookies

Farro, Beet and Arugula salad from Tea and Cookies blog. Oh, and that feta Tara mentions in the recipe? I’d use a local goat cheese…

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RIQ: Strawberries

Did I not promise a Recipe Instant Queue devoted to strawberries? Eat your heart out.

5. Strawberry Focaccia

From Saveur

You might think I bonked my head.  Last week I suggested grilled salad and this week its strawberry pizza. But I love strawberries in a savory application.

4. Strawberry Pineapple Crumble

Joy the Baker's crumble

Pineapples and strawberries, best friends in a fruit salad but rarely seen together otherwise.  Joy the Baker has changed all that. Take this to your next potluck and  you’ll have legions of fans. Just ask Joy.

3. NOLA Style Shortcake

Ezra Pound Cake's New Orleans style Strawberry Shortcake

Yes, please. Technically this is called Ponchatoula Strawberry and Brown Butter cake. It’s a mouthful in the best way possible.

2. Strawberry and Poppy Seed Muffins

from fresh365

I hate muffins. Truly.  We all have our quirks, just generally not broadcasted over the internet. Muffins bother me in an inexplicable way. But these could be the ones that turn me over to the muffin dark side. (Mr. Radar is now going to demand these, I know. He always wants muffins and I always refuse to make them).   Take a gander over to fresh365. I recently discovered the site, and wow!

1. Gluten free and Nut!! Free Cupcakes

From Elana's Pantry

I have several friends that are gluten free for health reasons. I am NOT gluten free for health reasons, mainly due to my allergies to most nuts. I’m allergic to nearly all tree nuts except for almonds and hazelnuts, and I usually have to blanch those nuts before eating to remove any contamination acquired during processing. It isn’t a big deal to me and I continue to make Thistle’s granola by using gloves and utilizing a taste-tester, usually Mr. Radar or an unsuspecting passerby.

This recipe? A winner for the GF and nut-free camps. No outside taste tester needed. Elana has a number of wonderful GF books, in case you are interested.

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Recipe Instant Queue: Memorial Day Sunshine

We’ve had a very soggy spring. It has been raining nearly perpetually since April. We’ve had a lot of flooding and (not) enjoyed some very frightening and bizarre weather.  So I’m hoping that Memorial Day is warm and sunny, full of friends, family and food.

5. Lobster Rolls

Lobster Roll, from the Foodist

There are recipes abound, but I trust Deb at SmittenKitchen and The Amateur Gourmet. I love, love lobster. It generally conjures memories of Christmas, as my parents always served lobster at Christmas as part of the Feast of Seven Fishes. Mr. Radar and I haven’t had lobster since we married, largely due to the fact that we live in a landlocked state.  Maybe this weekend is the time to break out the lobster rolls. In case you need to brush up on your lobster roll lore, check out this article from Food & Wine..  You could even make your own buns. I do. Ask Steve the Weather Watcher.

4. Grilled Vegetables, All Kinds

Grill the Salad!

Grilled Salad at Fine Cooking

Grilled Romaine with a homemade blue cheese dressing? Topped with bacon? More please. You can put all sorts of vegetables (and fruit!) on the grill- butter lettuce, potatoes, artichokes. Be adventurous and put a leafy green on the grill. Grill the potatoes BEFORE they go in the potato salad. It will taste better, I promise. Check out this article, 10 Things You Didn’t Know You Could Grill  at Fine Cooking for more great ideas.

3. Refreshing  Beverage for the Big Kids

Bourbon & Orange Smash from Eat, Make, Read

I’ll be using Bulleit, because this cocktail is delicious, but not good enough to use Mr. Radar’s beloved Woodford Reserve.  For Everyone Else, There’s Lemonade.

2. Big Burger.

Chef Jason's New Englandah Burgah

It’s got maple syrup. Apples. Cheddar Cheese. All of my very favorite things. I’ve used this recipe many a time, and it has become my go-to burger recipe. I’ve tweaked it a bit, mostly to reduce serving size. I also liked to add grilled Vidalia onions. But go for this recipe. So if you can’t embrace the New Englandah moniker, think of a state you like better. Chances are if its say, Michigan, Wisconsin, or Ohio, they’ve got apples, maple syrup and cheddar cheese, too. That’s what I did. This summer, my goal is to create the Michigan burger. I’ve got a plan. And it involves cherries. (And yes, I’ve considered the irony of creating a Michigan burger in Ohio).

1. DESSERT. Multiple Kinds. Preferably with Strawberries.

Deb at SmittenKitchen has pretty much cornered the market on strawberry desserts.

I couldn’t leave it at one dessert. I think in a few weeks, I’ll do a whole RIQ for just strawberries. But for now, tide yourselves over with these:

Some strawberry cupcakes would be good, too. Strawberry shortcake is a classic, how about giving Martha’s Strawberry Shortcake with basil a try? I love the strawberry/basil combination.  Feeling a little international? Try Caroline’s Eton Mess.  I already know Mr. Radar will want this one =)

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Recipe Instant Queue: Pesto Edition

Pesto and I have history. For every birthday, I would request pesto with homemade pasta, lovingly made for me by my mother. Every year she would ask if I wanted the Cocola family “meaty” sauce and I always refused. Only pesto. It was the one for me. When I first met Mr. Radar, he would not go on a date with me, but like pesto, I was convinced he was the one. So I seduced him, wielding my pesto and homemade pasta recipe. And we all know how that went =) Pesto has worked out pretty well for me thus far, so the more recipes the merrier.

5. Stinging Nettle Pesto

This both intrigues me and freaks me out. I hate stinging nettles, and they are the first weed to be abolished from my garden. But stinging nettles are everywhere, and this could be a budget friendly idea for the adventurous eater. From the Amateur Gourmet

After gloves, a little boiling, the stinging nettles become pesto

4.Fennel Frond Pesto from In The Kitchen With A Good Appetite

I like the fronds of fennel better than the bulb. So useful!

I love Melissa Clark’s new cookbook, In the Kitchen with a Good AppetiteI wanted it since Christmas, but when our local Borders went out of business in March, I snatched up a copy for $7.99. Practically criminal, especially considering how high quality this book is.

3. Red Pesto & Ravioli


I love Heidi Swanson. Her blog is one of my absolute favorites, one that I started following many years ago. I’ve been meaning to try this for years, and haven’t yet. Maybe this weekend!

2. Wild Ramp Pesto

saenyc's Ramp Pesto is a stunner

I have tried this one. I first saw this last year.  Mike Malone of Hungry Toad Farms gave me a bunch of ramps last year. So I made this pesto. And IT IS TO DIE FOR. Go get yourself some ramps and make this, seriously.

1. Pasta with Mint Pesto, Peas and Ricotta Salata

Sara Kate Gillingam-Ryan's Understated Dish

Because of all the rain we’ve been having, mint is abundant. Mine is practically going wild. My plan: this pesto.

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