Yes, I got tagged for the very first time, for my very first Meme! I’ve read other Meme’s before and it is kind of cool because you get to know just a little bit more about some of your blogger friends that you visit! The person I want to Thank for this tag is Maryann, over at findingladolcevita she has been a great support to me from day one!! So here it goes! Oh, I just wanted to say, I felt I needed a picture added and this one gives you a little more insight to me.
I love coffee!! I need glasses to read!!! and I’m from the Chicago area!!

What 4 Jobs Have I Had?

1. Cookie Decorator
2. “Faux” Painter of wall finishes
3 . Airbrush Stencilist
4. Real Estate

4 Places I”ve Lived?

1. City of Chicago
2. Suburbs of Chicago
3. Pacific Northwest
4. Sorry only 3

4 Places I’ve Been On Holiday?

1. Florida
2. Arizona
3. Vegas
4. Italy

4 Favorite Foods?

1. Authentic Italian
2. Spicy Anything
3. All kinds of Veggies
4. Cannolli’s

4 Places I’d Rather Be?

1. Disney World with my Grandaughter
2. Walking the streets of Florence
3. Gazing at the Oregon Coast
4. San Marco ,Venice

4 Bloggers I’m Tagging!!! (They might have been tagged before,but even so, I’d like to learn a little bit more about them)

Well, I’m finished!! Hope I didn’t bore you to much! Have a great day, all of you!

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Cucina Italiana!

Cucina Italiana! That was the name of a cooking class that I was asked to host this past Friday. The theme was Italian Appetizers! Recently we became members of a local Italian American Club and once a month a different member gets asked to host a cooking class. After much thought I decided on doing 4 appetizers. The photo above is of Crispy Shrimp w/White Bean & Rosemary Bruschetta. It’s actually made with canned cannellini beans mashed up with garlic, parsley, rosemary and olive oil, slathered on a toasted baguette slice, then garnished with one crispy shrimp.
Next, was a Grilled Polenta Cake w/Roasted Tomatoes & Sausage, I made the polenta seasoned with Parmesan cheese, olive oil. After it was cooked I spread it all out on a cookie sheet to cool, then cut the polenta into circles with a cookie cutter. The roasted tomatoes were then placed on the warm polenta and garnished with a slice of Italian sausage.

I also made Mini Meatball Sliders that I did a previous post on. Homemade mini meatballs cooked up in a nice marinara,placed on toasted mini buns garnished with arugula.

It was a very casual and informal event, just the way I like it! Everyone gathered around in my kitchen drinking wine, laughing and eating while Italian music played in the background.

And last but not least, was a Creamy Pesto Cheese Ball. This is a really nice appetizer to serve with wine and to mingle with. It’s very simple you just have to allow time to chill it.


2 8oz packages of cream cheese (room temp)

4 oz of Mascarpone cheese (also room temp)

1/4 cup of prepared pesto

1/2 cup of grated Parmesan

toasted pine nuts

basil and sun dried tomatoes for garnish

In food processor mix together pesto and 3 cheeses and blend till completely mixed.

Line a round bowl with plastic wrap, place basil and sun dried tomatoes on bottom. Scoop cheese mixture into bowl. Pack down firmly and refrigerate for 3 hours. Remove from bowl, take off wrap, place on platter and press pine nuts on the outside of cheese ball. You can then place it back in the frig till 1 hour before serving. Serve with your favorite crackers or mini toasts!

Oh, and by the way I wasn’t crazy to cook all that in front of everyone, I made most of it ahead of time, and all I had to do was talk and give a demo as I was putting it all together.

That pretty much wraps up our Cucina Italiana, it was a fun night with a great group of people!

Buon Appetito!

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Today the girls in the family got together to make our annual Meat Ravioli’s. This cherished recipe is from my Daughter in Law’s Nana,
who by the way, is a Die Hard Foodie, and the women is in her 80’s!!! I thought I would share the fun day we had making them,with all of you.

Thank goodness for modern conveniences! The food processor makes wonderful dough!

The meat mixed with spinach and cheese were carefully formed into the perfect sized balls, not to big and not to little! and then placed on the dough in the ravioli trays.

Then another piece of dough was rolled out nice and thin and placed on top to cover the meat mixture.

Here’s how they looked when they first popped out of the trays!

I think they turned out just right with the perfect amount of meat!!

We put them on cookie sheets, and popped them in the freezer to freeze individually, then placed in zip locked bags. We counted them all up and realized we did 400 in 2 hours! We were on a roll!! We all had our specific jobs and it worked out great. We said our goodbyes and I went home with my bag of goodies!

Of course we had to try these fresh little Rav’s right away so, as soon as I got home Ipulled out my pan and made a quick marinara, olive oil, a little garlic, some basil, and good tomatoes!

I cooked them up, and as you can see NONE of them broke up in the water!!! Hubby was downstairs watching a football game ,he quickly ran up to get a plateful, then ran back down, and I didn’t hear anything from him, so I yelled out “Well, what do you think??” His exact words were” I can’t talk, …these are exquisite!!!!” I laughed, and called my daughter in law and she got a kick out of it too.

I guess that sums it up!!

Thanks Lena!!!

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