Bring On The Tailgate Fun With #10DaysofTailgate

Welcome to #10DaysofTailgate!

Picture this – almost two dozen bloggers with over one hundred recipes scheduled to inspire you through an entire tailgating season. We’re talking chicken wings, skewers, sweet treats, and cocktails.  Kickoff starts today, September 20th and runs through September 30th.  Just promise me this – your fork and your monitor are non-mixy thinsg.  Fork does NOT go into the monitor .. no matter how droolworthy these dishes are, okay?  Great.  Now that we’ve got that clear –  

Get ready…get set…


Let’s start with a huge – HUGE! – thank you to our event sponsors who have graciously donated prizes for our readers. These sponsors have contributed great prizes for a gigantic giveaway. We have an incredible giveaway for this event. There are fourteen different prize packages (yes I said it- 14) which are detailed in the rafflecopter. The rafflecopter is below and will go live on September 20th. Please check back, if you’re reading this before our kick-off.


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Cooking ‘Round The Web

Cooking Round The Web - Cooking In Stilettos Finally, with a moment to breathe, I’m able to catch up on my feed reader and decided that it was time to do a new edition of Cooking ‘Round The Web.   Here are some fab posts that came across my path that might make you laugh, smile, think or just get your stilettos in the kitchen.

First of all, can I say how much I wanted to stomp my stiletto when I saw how much fun Jen from One Curly Fry had on her recent trip to Vegas? You must check out her recap (she even had a Frrrozen Oreo Hot Chocolate at Serendipity3).

One of my other fave people, Candice Kumai (aka the Stiletto Chef) poured her heart out in 30 Things I’ve Learned (or wish I had) Before 30. What’s that phrase – “if I knew then what I know now” – so very true true!

Mother Would Know has a great granola recipe and a cost breakdown that will have you making your own and never buying it from the store again.

To go with the granola – you really need to check out Alana from Eating From The Ground Up’s recipe for Crock Pot Greek Yogurt.  I go through a TON of greek yogurt with both myself and also for the SousPug (he needs yogurt to mask the taste of one of his meds) and knowing that I can control the ingredients makes it SO much better..  Alana – my wallet is singing your praises right now.

Muy Bueno Cookbook has a killer Tacos Al Pastor With Roasted Pinapple Salsa that is begging to be made this spring!

Marisa from Food In Jars got an interesting package the other day – her own cookbook. Amazon started shipping these lovelies out early (I got my copy the other day) and, let me tell you, I’m ready to start canning in stilettos after reading some of it. Congrats Marisa!

Not Without Salt threw the doors to her kitchen open with the post My Mess.

Tasha from The Housewife Diaries recaps her visit to the 2012 Taste of The Nation event here in Philly. I so need to go to that next year.

Creative Culinary has a great cocktail with this Limoncello and Prosecco Cooler with Raspberry Ice cubes – perfect for Mother’s Day.

Finally, a bit of food for thought with La Phemme Phoodie – she tackles a tough subject, Bullying, in her Keeping It Legal series which focuses on legal issues that affect food bloggers. It’s a must read.

What’s one post that has you obsessed this week – leave it in the comments!

Kids Are Taking Over The Kitchen

When I was growing up, the only cooking show that I was even vaguely familiar with was Julia Child’s PBS show and, to be honest, I was more interested in watching MTV.  Cooking and I never really got along until about 10 years ago.  As a “latch-key” kid, memories of cooking with my mother are very rare – I do remember doing the dishes tho.  I remember coming home after school and, I’ll confess, I was not a stranger to the “mustard sammie” and other things I could muster together that did not require cooking.  Let’s just say, my cooking skills left alot to be desired until I finally got bit by the culinary bug.

I was so excited to hear about Kids Who Love To Cook – an amazing web series that, you guessed it, teaches kids how to cook.  So many of my friends have little ones who often tell me that they want to be the next Giada or Rachael and I always want to encourage them to follow their dreams.  Plus – with the convenience of processed foods, it’s refreshing to see kids learn that they can make something that doesn’t always require a box.

So, if you have a future budding chef in training, why not take a moment and sit down with them and show them that there are Kids Who Love To Cook.  Then, let them find a recipe that inspires them and pass them the apron and a spatula and see what they can whip up in the kitchen.

Teriyaki Salmon from Kids Who Love To Cook on Vimeo.

12 Days of Giftmas – Blogger Edition – Part II

Ok – where does the time go? It’s December 22 and we’re T minus 3 days and counting. Oy Vey! So, here are a few more fabulous bloggers that told a little birdie what was on their holiday wish list this year.

12 Days of Giftmas - Day 10 - Bloggers Edition



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Cooking ‘Round The Web – Thanksgiving Edition

Have you started to panic that Thanksgiving is almost upon us?  Have you finalized that menu, planned the grocery list and started to prep?  Don’t worry – I haven’t either – but I’m in panic mode now.

Here are a few links to some fabulous reads that will help you get your holiday plan in order.

First up:  Blissfully Domestic has a Thanksgiving Cooking Checklist that is a must read.

Lana at Never Enough Thyme has some ideas for Thanksgiving Menu Planning.

Jen at One Curly Fry In A Box Of The Regular has her priorities set with Thanksgiving Cocktails.  I know I’ll also be serving Sunny’s Bourbon Cider Twist – love that cocktail!

Megan from This Girl Can Eat has you covered with Wine Pairing Ideas for Your Thanksgiving Dinner.

If you watched Food Network’s Thanksgiving LIVE! yesterday – you probably noticed that the chefs all talked about the importance of appetizers (and cocktails) to keep hungry guests from driving you nuts.  Sue over at Food Network Musings has a great idea for Tiny Thanksgiving Tarts that will have your guests “ooh-ing and ahhh-ing” over these stunning (yet simple) appetizers!

Michelle from Taste As You Go has a great idea for Bacon Wrapped Brussels Sprouts that also would make a great appetizer!

Thanksgiving isn’t always just about the turkey -the sides play a vital role, imo.  Kicking off the sides spotlight is Susan over at Sticky Gooey Creamy Chewy with her Killer Candied Sweet Potatoes that not only sound delicious but, thanks to the photos, look scrumptious!

If you like a little spice in your sweet potatoes, why not try Alli – n- Son’s Chipotle Mashed Sweet Potatoes instead?

Loralee at one of my favorite magazines, Where Women Cook, has a great recipe for a Broccoli Salad.

Do you serve soup as a starter?  Instead of the typical butternut squash soup, why not try this Pumpkin Black Bean Soup from Ali Girl Cooks.

Gina at SkinnyTaste has a Make-Over Corn Casserole which is a cross between a corn pudding and a cornbreak that is waistline friendly.

Thanksgiving also requires that stuffing (or dressing) must be on the menu.  Brown Eyed Baker has a Sausage Fig & Cranberry Stuffing which was adapted from the Barefoot Contessa that will definitely be on the menu in addition to my Bampa’s Chestnut Dressing.

Mother Thyme also has a Wild Rice and Cranberry Stuffing which is another great stuffing idea.

Chinese Grandma has a quick & easy recipe for a Easy Cranberry Sauce that will have you put away the canned stuff for good.

I’m going to attempt to make my own gravy (that is hopefully LUMP FREE) this year.  One idea I have is from Michael Ruhlman and his foolproof method for a fabulous Turkey Gravy.

Brown Eyed Baker also has a recipe for Homemade Gravy that looks simple yet full of flavor.  Did someone say Brandy?

Instead of the typical dinner roll, why not try Creative Culinary’s  Pumpkin and Sage Biscuits with Sage and Caramelized Shallot Brown Butter.

Not Rachael Ray has a fabulous recipe for Pumpkin Cheddar Muffins that will also be on the menu this week.

Now – turkey prep time and everyone I talked to is all about the brine.  I’m still considering but, if I do, I’m definitely going to try Annie Bakes’ recipe for Turkey Brine.

The first turkey I roasted – let’s just say it was a learning lesson.  I have gotten MUCH better over the years but I’m always learning new tips and tricks.   Michael Ruhlman comes to the rescue again with a new method for a Roasted & Braised Turkey.

We Are Not Martha also examines How To Cook A Butterball Turkey.

Finally, The Kitchn (which is always a wealth of information) discusses How To Cook A Turkey.

No Thanksgiving would be complete with dessert, right?  I am pretty positive that Pumpkin Cheesecake will be on the menu this week as my dear friend Bec is rumored to be sending one down to Philly with my dad.  Her recipe has spoiled me for any and all other pumpkin cheesecakes and – if she agrees – I might just have to disclose it here on Cooking in Stilettos.  However, not having it here won’t help you this week so I found some alternatives.

When I’m looking for tried and true dessert ideas, one of the first blogs I think of is Emily from Sugar Plum and, sure enough, she has you covered with a Layered Amaretti Apple Pumpkin Pie.

I know many are all about the cupcakes (yes Jen – I also mean you!) and Something Swanky has a delectable Apple Cider Cupcakes and Salted Caramel Buttercream. (this is SO going in the recipe arsenal!)

Want something chic for dessert at the Thanksgiving table?  Why not try Loralee of  Where Women Cook delish Blueberry Lemon Mini Tarts.

Finally, another idea for a delightfully unexpected dessert instead of the typical pie comes from Susan of Sticky Gooey Creamy Chewy with her Maple Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars.

What to do with Thanksgiving leftovers? Jaden at Steamy Kitchen has a great Turkey Gumbo that will be on the menu this year.

Not a gumbo fan?  The Merry Gourmet has you covered with a delicious Turkey Tetrazzini casserole.

Don’t forget to make some Turkey StockEmily Malloy’s Cleanliness Is Next To Godliness has you covered.

Finally – no Thanksgiving would be perfect without a fabulous table.  The Decor Girl has some great ideas on how to dress your holiday table for impact.

What’s on your menu for Thanksgiving this year?

 Finally – because I’ve never done this before but thought “Why Not” – if you have a great Thanksgiving Recipe post, why not link below.

Something Shiny and New To Brighten The Day

This past month has kicked my butt in ways I didn’t even know could exist. Between all the medical drama with the Sous Pug, balancing the day to day with hospital visits, dog nutrition research (home cooked diet v. canned dog food), learning medical jargon, etc., I am wiped out. Shortly after the Sous Pug went home, he was rushed back to the hospital and had to undergo quite the surgery and had to stay there for basically another week to recover.

Officially the Sous Pug is home for good. However it’s a delicate balancing act between the morning feedings, the noontime check (and his midday snack), the evening feedings and don’t even get me started on the amount of medication I have to give him daily.   When it comes to meds, that pug is smart and I can’t hide it in a daggone thing. If he finds it, he spits it at me and it’s a 45 min. wrestling match to get him to swallow just one pill. Add to that an ever watchful eye, his constant need for attention, his temper tantrums, doctor appointments and turning my home into a quasi hospital suite, well then, cooking (for me at least) has not been a high priority.  I have, however, been cooking for him regularly as he’s not a fan of the new prescription dog food. This is a dog that adores spice and to remove that and leave him with bland chicken, hamburger and rice is heartbreaking. So, that has been my life for the past month and, quite frankly, I’m hoping this is the last month we will see with Wiggy’s pancreatitis and, if all goes well, they will remove his feeding tube. I can’t even begin to tell you how fabulous Hickory Veterinary Hospital is – they essentially saved my little guy’s life. Their doctors, techs and staff are all top notch and I think that some treats have to be made for those wonderful people. Of course, Wiggy won’t be able to partake but, who knows, perhaps one day.

In other news, with all that is going on, I found a little somethin’ somethin’ in the mailbox this weekend that had me clickin’ my stilettos with glee – namely, my shiny new Blog Tag. I have become a tad obsessed with jewelry lately and when I found out that Courtney from Coco Cooks is also a fab jewelry designer, well I had to take a peek. And when I saw that she did blog tags, well you know I needed to have a Cooking In Stilettos blog tag to add to my jewelry collection in my favorite metal – copper.  Something bright and shiny to bring up the mood, right? She has some other stunning pieces and is so gifted when it comes to jewelry design so I know I will be adding some more Coco pieces to my collection.

If you would like a blog tag of your very own or some seriously chic pieces to add to your jewelry collection, check out Courtney’s jewelry site.


Cooking ‘Round The Web

What a week!  Well here are a few things that piqued this gal’s interest this week.