Valentine Heart Thumbprint Cookies

Valentine Heart Thumbprint Cookies - Chew Nibble Nosh 5

If you’re looking for a little something simple and sweet for your loves this Valentine’s Day, these little gems are the perfect thing.  They are deceptively simple and, in all honesty, pretty darn cute.  My girls were more than a little excited when they came home to find these waiting for them after school.  Ah, the life of a food blogger…celebrating life’s holidays a little bit early, every time.

I started by gathering my ingredients, all of which I happened to have on hand already, which is always nice.

The usual cookie suspects: Butter and sugars in one bowl.  Flour, baking powder and salt in the other.

Asian Slow Cooker Beef Stew

Asian Slow Cooker Beef Stew - Chew Nibble Nosh.

Sometimes, it’s a lot of fun when worlds collide.

 I can safely say that I’ve spent most of the mornings during my lifetime watching The TODAY Show.  I grew up watching Jane Pauley and Bryant Gumbel, watched it in college to catch up on the news before classes, and as an adult, I watch it, and enjoy it, more than ever.   When I was in New York over the summer at a blogging conference, I spoke with some people from the show, who were there to promote their online parenting community called TODAY Parenting Team.  It’s a place where everyone from TODAY Show guests and experts, to “Mom of Two, from Cleveland” can contribute to the conversation about what parenting looks like today.  It’s a great concept!  I have checked it out online, and enjoyed many parenting segments on the show as I sip my morning coffee.  Being a food blogger, though, the Parenting Team wasn’t really my writing niche. So, when I received an email from TODAY about their new TODAY Food Club, I got really excited, because THIS was a place I could really sink my teeth into.

Easy Oven Roasted Chicken Shawarma with Tabbouleh

Easy Oven Roasted Chicken Shawarma with Tabbouleh - Chew Nibble Nosh

I won’t mince words.  This is really, really tasty.  I have to thank my sister-in-law, Karin, for sharing this recipe with me, and I have to apologize to the rest of you for waiting so long to make it, and share it with you.

It’s really that good.

And it couldn’t be easier to throw together.

Lentil Soup with Balsamic Roasted Winter Vegetables

Lentil Soup with Balsamic Roasted Winter Vegetables - Chew Nibble Nosh

This, my friends, is EXACTLY the recipe we need for today.  This morning, at 5:00 AM, my phone pinged, telling me that my kids officially had their first two-hour weather delay of the season.  We only got a couple of inches of snow overnight, but it came down at just the right time to throw a kink in the bus schedule.  The kids were thrilled, I was excited to set my alarm for a little bit later, all was well with the world.  My husband texted me a while later and suggested I stay at home, if possible, because the road conditions stunk. OK, sounds good to me.

Slow Cooker Italian Pork Chops with Zucchini and Tomatoes

Slow Cooker Italian Pork Chops with Zucchini and Tomatoes - Chew Nibble Nosh

Thursday nights have become increasingly busy around here, so I’ve now dubbed them Slow Cooker Thursdays.  There’s no way I’m going to be able to cook a dinner in between shuttle stops, so I’m thankful I have a good number of tasty slow cooker meals in my back pocket.  This one can now be added to the list.

I honestly can’t remember a time where I’ve cooked whole, bone-in pork chops in the slow cooker, and I was pretty happy with how they turned out.  The pork was fall-off-the-bone tender, and had a ton of flavor from a delicious herb-garlic rub.  It was topped with tomatoes, zucchini, and a speedy quick gravy that I made from the leftover juices after cooking.

Za’atar Salmon with Vegetables and Couscous

Za'atar Salmon with Vegetables and Couscous - Chew Nibble Nosh

One of the greatest things I’ve learned along my food blogging journey is that there are some spectacular cooks floating out there on the interwebs.  I’m thankful that my platform here has connected me with many of these talented folks, and in turn, they inspire me to bring some of their amazing creations into my own kitchen.

My friend, Peter, posted this salmon recipe on his beautiful blog, Feed Your Soul Too, and as soon as I saw it, I knew I needed to try it out. (Thanks, Peter!!)  Over the past couple of years, I have easily fallen in love with Za’atar.  Za’atar is a flavorful, Middle Eastern spice blend.  It lends so much vibrant flavor to everything I’ve managed to sprinkle it on.  Everything from simple hummus to this tasty salmon.

Slow Roasted Tomato BLTs with Basil Mayo

Slow Roasted Tomato BLTs with Basil Mayo - Chew Nibble Nosh

Well, that’s it.

The holidays are over.  The kids head back to school today and life as we previously knew it will ease back into view.  I’m currently in that “I can’t believe I ate so much cheese/I am just not into cooking anything right now because I’ve been cooking for a month” frame of mind.  Don’t get me wrong.  I love to cook (obviously).  But the fact is, I’m totally over it right now.  Give me a few days to de-bloat and green smoothie my way back into normalcy and I’ll be right back in the swing of things.

Lasagna Soup

Lasagna Soup - Chew Nibble Nosh .

This winter has been so weird.  Balmy on Christmas, then a three-day monsoon and flooded roads, and now we’ve finally reached “kind of chilly”.  This soup is the perfect thing for those crummy days when all you want to do is snuggle under a blanket, read a good book, and watch the weather do strange things.  It takes all of the flavors I love from my favorite lasagna recipe and puts them right into the middle of a creamy, cozy, bowl of soup.

Roasted Beets with Horseradish Vinaigrette

Roasted Beets with Horseradish Vinaigrette - Chew Nibble Nosh

I don’t know about you, but this week is a pretty busy one for me.  So busy, in fact, that I contemplated just letting the ol’ blog go this week and not adding anything into the mix until after Christmas.  Then, looking through the leftovers in the fridge, I was reminded that I really should share this one special recipe with you before Christmas hits.  Not only is it beautifully festive for the holiday table, it’s unbelievably delicious, and became an instant hit in our household.  Don’t like beets?  You may change your mind once you try them this way.

Double Chocolate Peppermint Crunch Cookies – The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2015

Double Chocolate Peppermint Crunch Cookies - Chew Nibble Nosh 7

It’s that time of year again!  It’s time to announce this year’s contribution to The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap!  This is my fifth year participating in this fabulous event, hosted by Julie at The Little Kitchen and Lindsay from Love & Olive Oil. My job?  Bake up a fantastically new cookie recipe and ship out boxes of treats to three hungry food bloggers, Secret Santa style.  These delectable little cocoa-peppermint gems are what made the cut this year.  Dark, and fudgy, but with a peppermint zing that seems just about perfect this time of year, I couldn’t wait to send them out to this year’s recipients, Ginger from Stark Raving Delicious, Kellie from The Suburban Soapbox, and Annie from Annie One Can Cook.  Based on the response I got, I think they really enjoyed them!  Hope you do too.