Category Archives: Recipes

Flavorful Flank Steak with Tomato Relish!

As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about…….. loving more delicious dinners on the grill! I’m always so inspired by the fresh and beautiful flavors of the summer, especially sweet and juicy tomatoes. One of my favorite memories of my grandfather is eating the tomatoes we helped him pick right off the vine from his garden. Maybe that’s why I am so partial to this Flavorful Flank Steak with Tomato Relish.

Just like the Boy Scouts, I love to be prepared! This dinner is so tasty and simple; you’re going to love it too.

Flavorful Flank Steak

Serves 4-6


1 – 2 ½ lb flank steak

2 tsp brown sugar

1 tsp cayenne pepper

1 tsp cracked black pepper


Place flank steak on a foil lined, rimmed baking sheet

To make the rub, in a small bowl, mix;


Cayenne pepper

Cracked black pepper


Rub the rub all over the steak on both sides

Cover and refrigerate

Tomato Relish:

1 cup chopped red onion

3 Tbsp white wine vinegar

2 – 10 oz containers of grape tomatoes halved

½ cup chopped green olives

2 Tbsp olive brine

2 Tbsp horseradish

1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce

A couple dashes hot pepper sauce

½ tsp celery seeds

¼ cup olive oil

In a medium size bowl, mix;


1 Tbsp vinegar

Allow the flavors to blend for about 10 minutes, mixing often





In a medium bowl, whisk;

2 Tbsp vinegar

Olive brine


Worcestershire sauce

Hot pepper sauce

Celery seeds

Slowly, whisk in oil

Add the liquid mixture to the tomato mixture

Season to taste with salt and pepper

Cover and refrigerate until dinner

When you’re ready for dinner, pre-heat the grill to medium-high

For medium-rare, grill for approximately 5-7 minutes per side

Allow to rest for approximately 10 minutes

Cut steak against the grain and serve with Tomato Relish


My family loves a piping hot bowl of creamy mashed potatoes on the side

If you’re lucky enough to have a little relish left over, it’s awesome as a topping on a grilled hot dog, served…..Chicago Style!

More reminiscing, more fresh ingredients, more do ahead dinners, more mouth watering meals………

To schedule and Interior Design appointment, a Life Style consultation or a speaking engagement, please email me at



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Sweet And Savory Pork Chops on the Grill!

As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about…….more maple pork chops! I’m sorry; nothing says summer like the beautiful blend of sweet and savory on the grill. While I’m not particularly a briner, whenever I do think of brining, Thanksgiving turkey is the first thing that comes to mind. However, these Maple-Brined Pork Chops served with Maple and Butter Glazed Grilled Peaches were to die for!


Brining is meant to make the meat moist, and boy did it ever! The beauty is that the meat is prepped in the brine the night before and when you’re ready for dinner, you just toss the chops on the grill, which is easy and awesome.


Maple-Brined Pork Chops

Maple and Butter Glazed Grilled Peaches

Creamy Homemade Risotto


Maple Brined Pork Chops


3 cups of water

¾ cup chicken broth

2 tsp allspice

6 cloves of garlic, minced

1 bay leaf, crumbled

2 Tbsp salt

3 Tbsp maple syrup

4 boneless pork chops


In a sauce pan, pour;









Bring to a boil, stirring until salt is dissolved


Allow the liquid to cool

Place pork chops and the liquid into a re-sealable baggie

Chill over night


Pre-heat grill to medium-high heat

Remove pork chops from brine, discarding the liquid

Sprinkle the pork chops with salt and pepper

Grill for 3-5 minutes per side, or until cooked through

Remove from the grill and set aside


Maple and Butter Glazed Grilled Peaches

I chose 3 peaches and 3 plums. While the plums were very nice, the grilled peaches struck a perfect note with the pork.

3 peaches

3 plums

Slice in half and remove pits

Pre-heat grill to medium-high



2 Tbsp melted butter

2 Tbsp maple syrup


Sprinkle peaches and plums with a little salt and pepper

Brush butter and syrup generously onto peach and plum halves

Place fruit face side down on the grill for approximately 3-4 minutes



Creamy Homemade Risotto

This is one of my favorite sides. It’s elegant and delicious!


1 – 32 oz container of chicken broth

8 Tbsp butter

¾ cup diced onion

1 cup of Arborio rice

¾ cup white wine

1 cup grated Parmesan Cheese

Salt and pepper to taste


In a sauce pan, heat broth and reduce to simmer


In a skillet, melt 6 Tbsp butter over medium heat

Add onion and sauté for approximately 3 minutes, until nice and tender

Add rice, stirring to coat with the butter


Add the wine, simmering for approximately 3-4 minutes, until the wine evaporates

Add the broth, 1 cup at a time, stirring until the broth is absorbed into the rice

It should take 25 minutes or so until all of the broth has been absorbed

Remove from the heat

Add 2 Tbsp of butter

Stir until well combined

Add the cheese, stirring until nice and creamy

Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste


Serve and enjoy a sweet and savory sensation!


More maple syrup, more summer grilling, more pork and peaches, more delectable dinners……


To schedule and Interior Design appointment, a Life Style consultation or a speaking engagement, please email me at

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Summer Grilling……Having a blast!

As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about……more summer grilling! It’s absolutely amazing to me that there are so many ways to prepare a fabulous chicken dinner. Braised, baked, roasted, smoked, fried, grilled; the possibilities are endless. However, with family life in the summer being so unpredictable, I’m a huge fan of streamlining my meal plans whenever possible, which is why I love to marinate!

Because more of everything is always better, when I know we’ll have a particularly busy week, I like to make enough of a dish to serve as two meals. On day two, just pop it in the microwave and dinner is served in a snap!

Mediterranean Grilled Chicken

Garlic Roasted Broccoli

Classic Mashed Potatoes


Mediterranean Grilled Chicken

Not only is this a delectable dish to serve for dinner, but it’s great for a party as well. Marinade your chicken and make the tasty drizzle the day before. Bring the drizzle to room temperature and toss the chicken on the grill. How easy is that?

Because the kids had friends over for dinner, I made 8 chicken breasts and 10 drumsticks with this recipe……

Chicken and marinade:

In a large bowl, combine;

1 cup lemon juice

½ cup fresh flat parsley, chopped

2 cups olive oil

14 cloves garlic, minced

3 tsp fine ground seas salt

2 tsp cracked black pepper

Place 8 chicken breasts in a 2 gallon re-sealable plastic bag

Place 10 drumsticks in a 1 gallon re-sealable plastic bag

Divide marinade between them to completely cover

Place bags of chicken on a rimmed baking sheet or pan and refrigerate over night



8 garlic cloves, minced

4 heaping tsp of kosher salt

4 Tbsp lemon juice

 ¾ – 1 cup olive oil (depending how intense you want the flavor, more oil dilutes the impact a bit)

In a mortar, using a pestle, mash the garlic and salt to create a nice and thick paste (You can always use a small bowl and mash the garlic and salt with the back of a spoon, but a mortar and pestle is a great addition to your kitchen arsenal)

In a bowl (preferably with a nice lid), add;

Lemon juice

Olive oil

Garlic paste

Whisk together, cover and refrigerate over night. Bring to room temperature before using.

Meal prep:

I made 5lbs of mashed potatoes, peeling, cubing, washing and placing in a large stock pot, before I started the grill. Once I got the chicken going, I cooked the potatoes.

Pre-heat grill and reduce to medium-high

Remove the chicken pieces from the marinade and place on the grill rack.

I like to place the breasts skin side up first so I can gage how quickly the grill is working. I like to avoid scorching the skin side especially because the grill is going to be smoking like a son-of-a-gun because of all of the oil in the marinade. Make sure your chicken is cooked all the way through (salmonella is always a huge drag, even if you’re merely enjoying a family dinner). Insert an instant read thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken, checking until it registers at 165°. It may take a good 30 minutes or so.

Remove chicken from the grill and tent with foil until ready to serve.

Garlic Roasted Broccoli:

I thought we should live on the edge by roasting our broccoli rather than blanching it in boiling water for a change of paste. It was light and tasty.

This recipe serves 4

12oz bag of broccoli florets

2 Tbsp olive oil

3 garlic cloves, minced

Dash of crushed red pepper flakes

Pre-heat oven to 425°

In a small bowl, combine;

Olive oil


Crushed Red Pepper

In a large bowl, combine;


Oil mixture

Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil

In a single layer, place broccoli on baking sheet

Roast in oven for about 15 minutes, watching to make sure the florets roast, but don’t burn

Remove and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper

On a plate, place a heaping, helping of mashed potatoes, roasted broccoli and grilled chicken, drizzling the drizzle all over the chicken……enjoy, floss, brush and repeat!

More easy marinades, more summer grilling, more meals for family and friends…….

To schedule and Interior Design appointment, a Life Style consultation or a speaking engagement, please email me at

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Tuna Steaks; Chicken of the Sea…….

As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about…….more tuna steaks for dinner! While Chuck is a huge fish fan, there is not a chance that I could possibly get our kids to eat fish (not even fish sticks dipped in ketchup, and my people consider ketchup one of the food groups…… right next to chocolate.). Every now and again, however, I throw caution to the wind and make them hamburgers so we can enjoy a delicious and healthy dinner full of fresh fish.


Tomato and Onion Smothered Tuna Steaks

Grilled Vegetables

Brown Rice – Who doesn’t love a little Uncle Ben’s long grain brown rice?


Tomato and Onion Smothered Tuna Steaks

As a rule, summer makes me dream of grilling, but this recipe is quickly whipped up in a skillet right in your kitchen.

Serves 2


2 ahi tuna steaks, approximately 1” thick

5 Tbsp olive oil

½ large onion, diced (about 1 ½ cups)

4 garlic cloves minced

3 medium tomatoes, chopped (about 1 ½ – 2 cups)

½ – 1 cups of rough chopped basil

1 Tbsp capers, rinsed


In a large skillet, heat 3 Tbsp of oil over medium heat

Sauté onions, until tender, for approximately 5 minutes

Add garlic and sauté for an additional 3-5 minutes

Stir in tomatoes, basil and capers

Simmer for approximately 15 minutes, until the mixture thickens


In the meantime, heat 2 Tbsp oil in another skillet

Sprinkle fish with course sea salt and cracked black pepper

Cook until golden brown on each side, approximately 6 minutes total

Remove tuna steaks and place in pan with tomato mixture

Simmer until the fish is opaque in the center, about 5 more minutes


Plate fish and smother with tomato and onion mixture


Grilled Vegetables

This is super easy and super tasty. Slice and dice your favorite veggies and marinade in a balsamic vinaigrette for a few hours or overnight. I like to use a Zip-loc baggie for quicker cleanup.

Pre-heat grill to medium-heat

Place vegetables on grill, horizontally, to make nice char marks. Grill until cooked through, approximately 10-15 minutes (beware that your grill may smoke like a son-of-a-gun because of the salad oil).

You’re in for a real treat if you sprinkle your grilled veggies with a little crumbled feta cheese. With any luck, you’ll have leftovers!


Plate your fish, veggies and rice for a Heavenly summer treat!


More tasty meals, more fresh fish, more summer dinners……


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Homegating; Popcorn, Peanuts, Cracker Jack’s and DiGiorno!

As the More is More Mom®, I’m all about……..more Home-gating! Why head to the stadium to tailgate with the kids piled in the car, packed with everything but the kitchen sink, when you can enjoy the big game in the comfort of your very own home? My mantra is more of everything is always better, especially time spent with family and friends. What better way to re-connect than nibbling and noshing over a tasty buffet while cheering on your favorite team……

I absolutely love entertaining and Homegating provided the perfect party inspiration! As an Interior Designer, I crave authenticity, which is why I was crazy about all of the little details that went into making our Homegating party a huge success.


Homegating Dinner Buffet

Popcorn, peanut's and Cracker Jack's

Charming decorations strike the perfect tone; a blue plaid stadium blanket, blue and gold rooter poms, home-made felt pennants and an apothecary jar filled with gumballs in our team colors graced the buffet and bar. A picnic basket, brimming with popcorn, peanuts and Cracker Jacks made for an inexpensive and delightful centerpiece.


Cold Beverages; soda, wine and Miller Lite....

To get the party rolling, I set up a little bar so our guests could help themselves to cold sodas, wine and long neck bottles of Miller Lite.


Wrigley, 92lbs of fun!

For a pre-game warm up, the teenagers amused themselves by playing running bases and Bago’s, while keeping the ball away from our 92lb Chocolate Lab, Wrigley, was the real challenge. To make the day a little more festive, we brought my homemade Wrigley Field replica scoreboard out to the yard so the kids could manually score the game.



With the concession stand serving as such great inspiration, the menu was easy….


Homegating Party Menu

Popcorn, Peanuts and Cracker Jack’s

DiGiorno Pizza

Homemade Nachos

Hot Dog Bar; Chicago Style, BLT and Philly Cheese Dogs

Ooey-Gooey Chewy Bars


It’s not delivery, it’s DiGiorno!

DiGiorno Pizza....

DiGiorno has so many great toppings to choose from, but my people are total meat lovers. They were so crazy for the sausage and pepperoni pizza that there wasn’t a slice left on the tray!

While nachos at the ball park are fine, nothing beats those that I make at home (and for a fraction of the price!). The beauty is that everything can be prepped in advance and tossed in the oven 10 minutes before you’re ready to serve. Ole!


Pre-heat oven to 400°

2 lbs of ground beef, browned.

2 packets of Taco seasoning, combined with the browned beef according to the package directions.

Refrigerate until ready to use. Warm up in the microwave for 2 minutes when it’s nachos time.

1 large bag of your favorite tortilla chips

1 – 8 cup bag of shredded cheddar cheese

Your favorite toppings, such as;

Diced tomatoes

Diced onions

Sliced olives

Coat a 13×9 baking dish with non-stick spray

Place a layer of tortilla chips in the baking dish

Smother with cheese

Pop into the oven for 3-4 minutes, until the cheese starts to melt

Add another layer of chips

Cover with browned beef and more cheese

Generously sprinkle with tomatoes and onions

Cover with more cheese

Top with sliced olives

Cook for another 5-7 minutes, or until cheese melts

Hot Dog Bar;

Grill hot dogs, slide into a hot dog bun or brat roll, and place on a serving tray

Offer a variety of condiments to build your favorite hot dogs

Chicago Style Dog;

Yellow mustard ~Dill pickle spears ~Diced tomatoes ~ Diced onions ~ Sweet pickle relish ~ Celery salt

BLT Dog;

Mayonnaise ~ Bacon Strips ~ Shredded lettuce ~ Diced tomato

Philly Cheese Dog;

Cheese sauce ~ Bell pepper and onion strips (sautéed in olive oil until tender, about 10-15 minutes) ~ Dash of hot sauce


And for dessert…….

Ooey-Gooey Chewy Bars (with Nestlé’s chips)

Pre-heat the oven to 350°

In a large bowl, mix together;

3 cans of sweetened condensed milk

1 box of graham cracker crumbs


1 bag Nestlé’s milk chocolate chips

1 bag Nestlé’s butterscotch chips

Blend well

Line a 13×9 baking dish with parchment paper and coat with non-stick spray

Spread mixture into the dish

Cook for 30 minutes, or until a light golden brown

Cool until easy to handle

Lift parchment paper out of dish, place on a cutting board and remove the parchment paper (no stick! No mess!).

Cut into bars (I prefer to remove the edges so the bars are nice and even)

Place on a serving dish and enjoy…….   


The only thing that beats a visit to your favorite stadium is enjoying a Homegating party with your closest family a friends! Let’s play ball…….

To schedule and Interior Design appointment, a Life Style Consultation or a speaking engagement, please contact me at

I’m excited to have been asked to be a part of this campaign for Collective Bias and DiGiorno; a Homegating Game Time Party! Hosting family and friends, enjoying our buffet and playing games as we cheered on the home team was a blast!


Filed under Entertaining, Family Life, Friendship, Interior Design, More is More Mom, Personal Style, Recipes