Cooking & Living in Small Spaces with Style

Appetizer Idea—Wild Salmon Eggs And Cream Cheese

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Wild salmon eggs and cream cheese appetizer

Wild salmon eggs and cream cheese appetizer

Wild salmon eggs (caviar) and cream cheese on toast points is an excellent appetizer for holidays, other events or just a self-indulging occasion. The appetizer is easy to assemble and fun to make. If it’s for an occasion, just be sure to have sufficient ingredients to cover for a lot pre-occasion tasting!

How to Assemble:


  • 2 ounces wild salmon egg (caviar)

  • Cream cheese, soft

  • Thinly sliced white bread

  • Optional: butter to cover the toast

  • Ideas for garnish: snips of Italian parsley, chives or the green stem portion of the spring onions.

  • Wedges of fresh lemon


Toast the white bread. (I had used a toaster because I was making a few for my “self-indulging” moment. And yes, it was great!) If you’re making a lot of appetizers, say for guests, it’s better to cut off the edge first. Cover with butter, if you choose to do so. (I didn’t add butter). Then cut the bread from opposite corners to create the triangles, place on a sheet pan, and under a broiler until toaster Note if you toast the bread first, sometimes the corners of the triangle will break off when you add the cream cheese.

Top the toasted bread points with a dollop of cream cheese then the wild salmon eggs. Garnish with your choice of herbs or the green onion. Serve with fresh lemon wedges..


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My Favorite Costco Snack

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If you’re fortunate to live near a Costco food store, then you know how delicious the food is. Most weekdays they entice you to buy even more with lots of food tasting stations. This is especially true on the weekends when they seem to double the number of tasting stations. Often I come home with at least one food item that I had tasted. This was true for their cranberry walnut round bread which is normally available during the Christmas holiday season.

Baked Tarragon Chicken Thighs And Rice

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This baked chicken thigh casserole started a quick and lazy way for me to get dinner on the table. Over the years, I’ve tweaked it by adding more flavors such as bell peppers and the tarragon. But the rice had always been mushy. My latest tweak is to use an earthenware dish that cooks more evenly and to remove the aluminum foil during the last 15 minutes of cooking. I confess, I’m still tweaking. My second confession: I can never get enough of the simple flavors I find in the dish.

Strawberry Shortbread Milkshake

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Have fun making a very thick milkshake poured over crushed shortbread and fresh strawberry compote. Top it with whipped cream and you have a drinkable strawberry shortbread milkshake. It’s a quick and delicious way to get all of the wonderful flavors of a strawberry shortcake with the added scrumptiousness of a milkshake. I kept the recipe simple only four ingredients; that is, I didn’t add anything to the milkshake. The whole beverage is sweet enough.

I used my delicious leftover Chunky Strawberry Compote. You can substitute your strawberry shortbread milkshake with strawberry preserve or even frozen strawberry that includes a syrup. But frankly, I preferred a compote that was made with fresh strawberries.

I used sugar-free shortbread cookies made by Vootman Bakery. The cookies measure 3” in diameter. If you can’t find this brand, then, of course, use another brand. I strongly suggest using a sugar-free shortbread cookie or simply bake your own.

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The Recipe
Yields 1 - 16-ounce glass

Tools: Electric blender and a long handle spoon


  • 1 pint vanilla ice cream, frozen

  • 1/3 cup whole milk

  • 2-3 shortbread cookies, crushed

  • 3-4 Tablespoon strawberry compote

  • 1 strawberry cut into quarters for garnish

  • Piped whip cream for garnish


  1. Pack the crushed shortbread cookies into the bottom of a glass.

  2. Add a layer of the strawberry compote to fill about 2” or more.

  3. In a blender, add 1 pint of scoops of ice cream.

  4. Add milk.

  5. Pulse the ingredients on chop (or mix) about 4-5. Take care to blend sufficient for a very thick texture.

  6. Pour milkshake into the glass to about 3/4” from the top.

  7. Top the milkshake with piped whip cream and garnish with a slice of strawberry


To keep the milkshake nice and cold, especially during the preparations, chill both the blender container and the serving glass. Add more shortbread cookies to yield about 2” at the bottom of the glass.


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Chunky Strawberry Compote

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I love making my own compotes. As in this strawberry compote, I can control and explore flavors. I can make it with fresh ingredients. I can make it chunky. If you love a strawberry preserve, this compote is several steps up the flavor range.

Fruity Nutty Salad With Orange Ginger Vinaigrette

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Salads don’t really have to be boring, nor does it take a lot of time to “throw” fresh ingredients together for lots of great flavors. In this fruity nutty salad with an orange ginger vinaigrette, I cheated a bit and bought a pre-packaged and already washed of greens. Cut up two of my favorite fruits and added pecan nuts. This delicious and refreshing salad was served for lunch.

From A Light Lunch Table Setting. The menu included a Two-Cheese Potatoes Au Gratin with Bacon. For dessert and to freshen the palate, a scoop of lemon sorbet with pecans and caramel syrup:

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The Recipe
Serves 2


  • 10 ounces of washed packaged mixed lettuce greens

  • 4 ounces fresh strawberries, washed, tops cut off and then cut into quarters

  • 1 sweet orange, peeled and segments cut into pieces

  • 2-3 ounces of whole pecans with some broken into large pieces

Orange and ginger vinaigrette (yields 1 cup):


1/3 cup orange juice
Juice from 1/2 orange
Grated orange from 1/2 orange
1/2 inch fresh ginger, grated or 1-2 teaspoons dry ginger
2 Tablespoons honey
1 Tablespoon white wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


Whisk together the first six ingredients, blending it well. Then continue to whisk while drizzling in the olive oil. Chill the vinaigrette for at least 1-2 hours. However, for flavors to best come together, make it the day before needed.

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Orange Ginger Vinaigrette—Best Ever!

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Fresh ginger, the zest of half an orange, and honey make this the best Orange Ginger Vinaigrette ever. Yes, I said it, the best ever! The flavors come to gather beautifully, adding just a little bite from the fresh ginger which pairs well with the sweetness of the honey.

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