Boozy Spin on National Blueberry Month!

July is officially in full swing and many are celebrating National Blueberry Month by heading to blueberry fields with family and friends. If you’re looking for more ways to incorporate all your freshly picked blueberries into seasonal recipes, why not try one of these delicious cocktails featuring Pomegranate Blueberry SPARKLING ICE.
  • 1 Part Reisling
  • 1 Part Pomegranate Blueberry Sparkling Ice
  • Pomegranate Seeds
  • Blueberries
  • Cranberries
  • 1 Teaspoon Agave
  • Mint (to garnish)
  1. Mix all ingredients in a pitcher
  2. Pour contents into wine glasses
  3. Add mint to garnish
  • 1 Part Dry Champagne
  • 1 Part Pomegranate Blueberry Sparkling Ice
  • Mint (to garnish)
  • Blueberries (to garnish)
  1. Mix all ingredients in flutes
  2. Add fresh mint and blueberries to garnish

Orange Chicken Meatballs

from: Life Made Simple


My 6 year old is like most others – a picky eater. He has never, EVER liked pasta (seriously? Did they switch babies on me at the hospital?), would live off of pb&j sammies if I’d let him, and has recently started having hunger attacks at 8:07pm every night.

However, one of his favorite things in the world to eat is Chinese Orange Chicken. Yep. You heard me. SPICY Orange Chicken. Again, if he could eat it every day, he would.

So, when I found this variation, I asked him if he’d like me to make it. He said, “Yeah! Sure! That’ll be good!”

I was unsure. I’ve tried variations on other things he likes and it goes over like a lead weight.

Much to my surprise, he did love it, and wanted seconds! He is also currently eating Round 3 as an after-school snack.

For the meatballs

  • ¼ c. milk
  • ½ c. panko breadcrumbs
1½ lb. ground chicken
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp. green onion, minced
  • 2 tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
  • ¼ tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

For the sauce

  • ½ c. low-sodium chicken broth
  • ½ c. freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 tbsp. freshly grated orange zest
  • ½ c. granulated sugar or honey
  • ⅓ c. white or rice vinegar
  • ¼ c. low-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ tsp. ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbsp. cold water
  • 1 tbsp. cornstarch
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Line a standard size baking sheet with parchment paper or a baking mat, set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the milk and panko breadcrumbs. Allow to soak for 5 minutes. Add the chicken, egg, garlic, green onion, soy sauce, ginger, salt and pepper. Using your hands, mix together just until combined (overworking it will cause the meatballs to be dense).
  3. Shape into meatballs and place onto the prepared baking sheet. Place in the oven and bake for about 15 minutes or until cooked throughout (internal temperature of 165).
  4. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan set over medium-low heat, combine the chicken broth, orange juice, orange zest, sugar or honey, vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, black pepper and red pepper flakes. Bring the mixture to a low simmer. In a small bowl whisk together the cold water and cornstarch, add to the saucepan. Whisk until combined, continue cooking for 5 minutes or until the sauce thickens (I usually let mine go for about 8 minutes).
  5. Place the meatballs in a large bowl and cover with sauce. Toss to coat, serve hot.

Vegetable Ramen Stir Fry


adapted from Life Made Simple

Yield: 4-6 servings
  • 3 tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 8 oz mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, julienned
  • 1 medium carrot, julienned
  • ½ yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 packages instant noodles (ramen or yakisoba)
  • ½ small cabbage, chopped
  • 1 cup canned bean sprouts
  • 1 tbsp. white wine
  • 3 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. oyster sauce
  • 1 tsp. brown sugar
  • 1½ tsp. sesame oil
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper
  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet set over medium-high heat, add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the mushrooms and cook for 2-3 minutes, then add the garlic, bell pepper, carrot and onion. Saute for 5 minutes.
  3. Place the noodles in the boiling water, cook for a few minutes, they do not need to be fully cooked. Drain and set aside.
  4. Add the cabbage and sprouts and saute for 2 minutes, then pour in the wine.
  5. In a small mixing bowl whisk together the soy sauce, oyster sauce, brown sugar, sesame and black pepper. Add the noodles. Pour the sauce into the skillet, toss together and cook for an additional minute or two. Serve hot, garnish with sesame seeds if desired.

Classic Movie Night Snacks

Grab your family’s favorite movies and curl up in the living room with these cute twists on classic theater treats from FamilyFun magazine. These simple and fun recipes are the perfect way to get kids excited about helping in the kitchen before a fun family movie night.


Image courtesy of FamilyFun Magazine


Little movie critics will slurp this super slushie right up.

Makes 2 servings

  • 2 cups cream soda
  • ½ tsp. Kool-Aid Ice Blue Raspberry Lemonade powdered mix
  • 3 cups crushed ice
  • 2 drops blue food coloring
  • 2 Rainbow Twizzlers
  1. Help your child measure the cream soda and Kool-Aid into a blender. Add ice and food coloring, and blend until smooth.
  2. Cut the ends off Rainbow Twizzlers, stick them in the drinks as straws, and all the kiddos will have to worry about is brain freeze!

Image courtesy of FamilyFun Magazine


This pizza-parlor staple goes mini—turning it into the perfect food for your viewing party.

Makes 5 servings

  • 2 cans refrigerated smallbiscuit dough
  • 60 slices pepperoni (about half a 6-oz. package)
  • 20 one-inch cubes of mozzarella cheese, cut from cheese sticks
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • ¼ tsp. dried Italian seasoning
  • ⅛ tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 jar (14 oz.) pizza sauce, warmed
  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking pan.
  2. Help your kids roll out each biscuit to ⅛-inch thick. Place 3 slices pepperoni and 1 cube cheese on each round. Pull the edges up around the filling, and pinch dough together at the top. Place in the pan, with the seam side down.
  3. Repeat with all the dough rounds, slice two vents in the top of each, and brush with olive oil. Sprinkle with dried herbs and garlic powder.
  4. Bake 30 to 35 minutes, until golden brown and cooked through. Serve with pizza sauce.

Image courtesy of FamilyFun Magazie


Sweet! Salty! Crunchy! This pumped-up popcorn is a winner.

Makes 5 servings

  • 10 cups popped popcorn
  • 1 cup broken pecans
  • 1 cup chopped dried apricots
  • 2 cups thin pretzel knots, broken into pieces
  • 1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • ¾ cup butter
  • ½ cup light corn syrup
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  1. Heat oven to 250°F. Line two baking sheets with nonstick foil.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the popcorn, pecans, apricots, and pretzels.
  3. In a saucepan, combine brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, and salt (an adult’s job). Cook over medium heat until it boils. Boil for 2 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla and baking soda.
  4. Pour caramel over popcorn, stirring. Spread onto baking sheets. Bake for 45 minutes, stirring twice. Remove from oven and cool completely. Break into chunks and serve.

Sarafina’s One-Pot Pasta

Sarafina's One-Pot Pasta|Sarafina's Kitchen

  • 16 ounces linguine
  • 12 ounces cherry or grape tomatoes, halved or quartered if large
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced (about 2 cups)
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
  • 2 sprigs basil, chopped or chiffonade
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (I used 1 T lemon olive oil with 1 T regular – yum!)
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 1/2 cups water (or 3 cups of broth and 1 cup of white wine)
  • 2-3 small Parmesan rinds to add to the stock (for creaminess)
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving
  1. Combine everything into the pot but the grated Parmesan. Make sure the pasta lays flat.
  2. Bring to boil over high heat.
  3. Boil mixture, stirring and turning pasta frequently with tongs, until pasta is al dente and water has nearly evaporated, about 9 minutes.
  4. Season with salt and pepper and top with grated Parmesan.

Sarafina's Kitchen | One-Pot Pasta

Sarafina's Kitchen | One-Pot Pasta

Chili Rellenos Casserole

Chili Rellenos Casserole | Sarafina's Kitchen

From That Skinny Chick Can Bake

  • 8 eggs
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • A pinch of red pepper flakes, optional
  • 3 7-ounce cans of whole green chilies, split open
  • 1 pound shredded cheese, I used mild white cheddar
  1. Grease an 8 x 8 or 9 x 9 inch pan (or similar sized casserole dish).
  2. Beat together, eggs, milk, flour and seasonings.
  3. Layer a third of the chilies, then a third of the cheese and repeat.
  4. Pour egg mixture over cheese.
  5. Let rest for about a half hour while you preheat the oven to 350º.
  6. Bake for 40-45 minutes, Let sit 20 minutes before serving

Homemade Pimento Cheese

Thank you so much to the folks over at Tabañero for sending me two free bottles of their amazing hot sauce. I use it in a lot of recipes…but this one is my favorite.


Homemade Pimento Cheese | Sarafina's Kitchen

  • 8 oz sharp shredded cheddar
  • 4 oz diced pimento; drained
  • 4T mayo
  • 2T green onion
  • 2t garlic powder
  • 5-6 dashes Tabañero
  1. Mix together. Seriously. That’s it.
  2. Makes awesome grilled cheese or put it in a Mason jar and use a spoon and some crackers.

Bread Crumb Salsa

Bread Crumb Salsa | Sarafina's Kitchen

  • ½ cup + 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and coarsely ground pepper
  • One 1 1/2-pound plain focaccia bread, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • ½ cup minced shallots
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup drained small capers
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh thyme
  1. Preheat the oven to 350.
  2. Working in batches, pulse the focaccia in a food processor or blender until it is chopped into crumbs.
  3. Transfer the crumbs to a large bowl and toss with 2 tablespoons of the extra-virgin olive oil.
  4. Spread the bread crumbs on a large rimmed baking sheet and bake them for about 30 minutes or until browned, turning and stirring occasionally, until the crumbs are dry and golden.
  5. Let cool.
  6. In a large bowl, mix the shallots with the vinegar and let stand for 15 minutes.
  7. Add the capers and thyme, then slowly whisk in the remaining ½ cup of olive oil until blended.
  8. Add the bread crumbs, season with salt and pepper and toss well.

Marinated Mushrooms and Asparagus Salad

Adapted from 

Marinated Mushrooms and Asparagus Salad | Sarafina's Kitchen

  • 1 pound of mushrooms, quartered
  • 1 pound asparagus, bottom two inches cut off
  • 1 bunch scallions chopped large
  • 5 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 small zucchini, quartered lengthwise and sliced thin
  • a small bunch chives, cut one inch long
  • 2 tablespoons capers
  • 2 tablespoons fig balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Fill a large pot of water for blanching and bring to a boil. Add salt until it tastes like the ocean.

  1. While you are waiting for the water to boil, coat a sauté pan with oil and turn to high heat. Add the mushrooms to the hot pan and let them sit for a minute to gain color. Shake them every minute or two to brown them on all sides. After five minutes and when they are deeply browned, add the chopped garlic. Gently toss or stir a few times, then remove from heat and place in a mixing bowl. Add the vinegar and scallions. Toss and let cool.
  2. Blanch the asparagus in the boiling salted water for two minutes. Remove and shock in ice water. Let sit in the ice water to completely cool, about two minutes. Remove and cut each spear in thirds on a bias and add to the mushroom bowl.
  3. Finally add your fresh chives, capers, and zucchini. Season with salt and pepper, and then toss one last time. Keep in the refrigerator until served. This will hold up well for three days.
%d bloggers like this: