It's not always easy coming up with a recipe each week for my food column. In fact, it's seldom easy. But it's worth the effort. This food column is one of the most rewarding things I do, especially in recent years since my daughter, Anna, started taking the photographs for me.
I cannot tell you the pleasure it brings me when someone tells me, "I look forward to reading your food column every week." And it happens often. Just ask my kids; they like to tease me about it!
Just a few days before Christmas, one of my son's former high school teachers stopped me at a store to tell me she tries my recipes often and had recently made my microwave peanut brittle and rocky road fudge. Her comments made me smile.
This past year, as I've struggled with heart-breaking grief after my mother's death, just 11 months after my father's death, I've really relied on the routine of trying new recipes, sharing them with my readers and hearing feedback as therapy. It's amazing how far a little encouragement and thanks will go (not to mention a hot bowl of soup or a sweet treat) to mend a broken spirit.
Again this year, I decided to use this year-end column to re-publish some of my favorite food column recipes for the year. I wasn't sure there were any memorable ones until I started looking through our archives and realized it was this year I shared so many recipes that I'm still making such as a super yummy veggie filled ham and cheese pie that my husband and I adore.
I make honey mustard pasta salad at least once a month for lunches, and I keep Chicken Tetrazzini Florentine in my freezer for nights I don't want to cook.
My daughter often requests that I make pizza melts, and my husband looks forward to nights I make seasoned turkey burgers.
Son Robert requested a fruit pizza for his Christmas Eve birthday. We all love this easy recipe.
And my recipe for microwave bread and butter pickles was one of my most popular ones ever. For weeks after that one ran, I got calls and e-mails from people telling me how much they loved them.
So in case you missed these favorites, here they are again.
Thank you for reading my column every week, and please don't stop. I got cookbooks for Christmas, and I'll be experimenting and sharing!
The best recipes of 2010