All posts filed under: Barefoot Contessa

Cocktail of the Week: It’s About Thyme! Plus, Parmesan-Thyme Crackers

Last weekend, I planted four new thyme plants in my little herb garden, so in honor of that, I’m featuring thyme in this week’s cocktail and finger food! This was the first cocktail The Husband and I learned to make together.  Inspired by that year’s winner of the 2011 Signature Spring Cocktail Contest: “No Thyme Like the Present“; it was served as the signature drink at my 40th birthday party (my, how time flies)!  The original recipe is a Hendrick’s Gin cocktail flavored with fresh thyme, subtle hints of cucumber and finished with a float of white grape juice.   The drink was amazing! It was cool and refreshing and perfect for an outdoor summer gathering. What I remember most was that I only had one glass of it and I was the Birthday Girl!  Why do I always get cut off so early?  Well, that was a few years ago, and I think my tolerance has increased a bit since then! My version of the recipe uses more gin, less juice and incorporated the herbs …

The Year I Learn to Bake: Ina Garten’s Baked Chocolate Pudding

My stand mixer has been sitting on the countertop, patiently waiting for me to remember my New Year’s resolution to learn how to bake.  I’ll bet you thought I’d forgotten about it, too!  More likely, I’ll bet you thought it would be so much more fulfilling to resolve to be more organized or eat fewer calories…or perhaps even exercise more?  And not that there’s anything wrong with being virtuous, but aren’t most resolutions broken by the middle of February anyway? So, this was my way of setting myself up for success.   This is how you WIN at resolution-making:  make resolutions that you actually don’t mind keeping long-term! Being that it’s Valentine’s Day and I’m not adept at this whole baking thing yet, I decided to try something easy; something fairly fool-proof that didn’t contain anything terribly exotic and could be whipped up in mere minutes.  This recipe for Baked Chocolate Pudding fit the bill perfectly! I found it in Ina Garten’s “Back to Basics” cookbook and true to Ina’s form, there were only seven …

My Soup Addiction: Ina Garten’s Winter Minestrone

A couple of weeks ago, I was watching Barefoot Contessa on Food Network and Ina Garten made this soup on a cold, snowy day in the Hamptons and then ate it in front of a roaring fire!  I immediately thought:  I want that soup right now!!  I also thought: I want it to snow right now! That second thought being completely implausible, of course.  And not that I needed any excuse to make soup, the fact that the days are getting shorter and the nights are getting colder sure helped my resolve to make an enormous pot of Ina Garten’s Winter Minestrone.   This soup was amazingly good–rich and hearty and loaded with vegetables and tender pasta; it is a perfect, complete meal!  The soup is finished with a bit of white wine and basil pesto, which really adds a lot of depth of flavor.  I love that this soup features butternut squash, which gives it a subtle sweetness.  Plus, it is chock full of dark leafy greens!  The original recipe calls for the addition …