Category Archives: Recipes

In the Kitchen | Martha Stewart’s Spicy Cheese Biscuits

Marlin’s been sick with a terrible headache since last night, so this morning I decided we’d stay home and I’d make one of his favorite breakfasts.

This is my favorite recipe from my copy of Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook. It’s her spicy cheese biscuits and they are perfect for breakfast, brunch or a side for dinner. Or for curing headaches (hopefully). They’re quick, easy, and they’ll keep really well in the freezer if you want to make extra. Let me just save you the time. You’ll want to make extra.

Ashley Terry 2012

The spicy secret of this is the smoky sweet paprika mixed with the dry ingredients and sprinkled over the top just before baking. If you wanted to get really brave, you could add a little cayenne pepper, but I prefer the paprika. Also, the red flakes add a beautiful pop of color!

Ashley Terry 2012

My favorite part? The cheese of course! The recipe calls for gruyere, a yellow Swiss cheese, but you can use whatever you have on hand, cubed or shredded so it mixes in well. This morning I used a mix of a sharp cheddar and my personal favorite, pepper jack, which goes well with the spicy flavor profile.

Ashley Terry 2012

The recipe also calls for heavy cream, which works beautifully. I don’t always keep cream around, so in a pinch I’ll use plain soy milk. The catch is to use less than the amount of cream the recipe lists, because the soy milk is thinner than cream, so if you use the same amount, your mix will be too watery. I used just under a cup here, where it asks for 1 1/2 cups of cream.

Ashley Terry 2012

Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes or just until they’re golden brown on the edges and cooked all the way through.

Ashley Terry 2012

These biscuits are heavenly all by themselves, straight out of the oven while they’re still hot and steamy when you open them. But the possibilities of sides you could put with them are endless.

Hopefully they’ll put a smile on Marlin’s face and have him feeling better soon. Happy Sunday! Now go make these!

Ashley Terry 2012




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Homemade Gift Idea: Candied Cinnamon Pecans & Almonds

This year we’re really blessed to have lots of great gifts to share with our friends and family for Christmas. Just walking by our little tree in the corner with presents overflowing underneath reminds me of how much we have, and we’re so lucky to be able to give it away. By now, the day before Christmas Eve, I’ve done plenty of shopping, but some of the gifts I’m most excited about sharing are the ones I’ve made: little pint mason jars of candied cinnamon pecans and almonds. They’re a perfect treat for snacking and sharing; they’re salty and sweet; they’re easy to make, and with a bright little bow on top, they’re a super sweet gift for anyone you know, so I thought I’d share the recipe with all of you, too.

Here’s the disclaimer: this is not my original recipe. In fact, I should probably call these Sweet Aunt Briggett’s Cinnamon Pecans & Almonds, but, well, that takes so much more energy. My Aunt Briggett sent me the recipe so that I could make favors for my cousin Katlyn’s wedding, and Marlin and I couldn’t stay away from them. They’re completely addicting. I wish they were more difficult to make; knowing how quick and easy they are is really dangerous.

Okay, here goes:

1 cup sugar (you could use white or brown)

1/2 cup cold water

3/4 teaspoon salt (I like kosher, especially for sprinkling over the top at the end)

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (this is no time for cheap substitutes–the real deal is irreplaceable)

4 cups pecan halves & almonds (or any mix of nuts you prefer)

Combine the sugar, water, salt & vanilla in a small saucepan. Boil to 24o degrees or about 4 minutes (whisking intermittently).

Remove from the heat and pour over the pecans & almonds in a large mixing bowl; add cinnamon.

Stir until the syrup forms an even sugar coating. Spread the nuts out flat on a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper for cooling.

Try not to eat them all in one sitting. Easier said than done.

Copyright Ashley Terry 2011

Copyright Ashley Terry 2011

The warm cinnamon makes these perfect gifts for Christmas and any winter holiday. Small glass jars and a big red bow make them a beautiful little gift for anyone on your list!

Copyright Ashley Terry 2011


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Recipe: Potato Basil Frittata (Inspired by the Barefoot Contessa)

This recipe is from yesterday’s post. I got the idea for a potato basil frittata by looking up a brunch menu from Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa. I say my frittata is inspired by because, as usual, I got the basic idea and then I made the dish myself and added my own special touches. That’s actually how I use most recipes, except for anything that involves baking, because that’s got to be exact.

So for this frittata I started with a 400 degree oven and the following ingredients:


2 tomatoes

2-3 red potatoes

Monterrey Jack cheese, shredded

Salt & Pepper

Milk (I had soy in the house, but you can use any kind you like, or even a cream for a more decadent meal)

Basil, chopped


I chopped the potatoes into bite-size chunks and fried them like I would hasbrowns, in a skillet with a very shallow layer of canola oil, then I set them aside to cool. I diced the tomatoes to sprinkle on top just before putting the frittata in the oven, and set those aside too. Before I diced them, I used a spoon to clean out the tomato and take all the extra juices and seeds out.

In the bowl with the potatoes, I pour my eggs (amount depends on how many people you’re feeding; I used the equivalent of four eggs to make one frittata that fed three people and left plenty of leftovers). I add the cheese and a splash of milk and a few dashes of salt and pepper. Then I add the chopped basil and stir it all together.

Pour the mixture into a nonstick skillet (or one that’s been greased) and sprinkle the tomatoes all over the top. Then I pop it in the oven just until the frittata is firm all the way through and the sides are just starting to brown up a little. If you want to test it, you can stick a toothpick or a knife in the middle like you would a cake.

For serving, I carefully slide it out onto a nice big plate with a couple of spatulas and then sprinkle a little extra basil or parsley on top to make it extra pretty.

Ashley Terry 2011

Ashley Terry 2011


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Recipe: Snap Pea Stir Fry

This weekend was full of international cuisine for the Terrys. On Saturday we had Greek from Zakia’s and I discovered how much I love falafels (why have I not tried these before)? On Sunday I decided to make the Asian food that we passed up on Saturday for the Greek. The best part of this meal is that you can do most of it ahead of time and then when you’re ready to eat, just blanch a bag of frozen stir fry vegetables and toss ’em in. It’s also great for families that eat in shifts, because you can keep the rice separate so it doesn’t get soggy and just mix it in when you plate up the food.

You’ll need:

1 bag of frozen stir fry vegetables of your choice (I obviously like the snap pea variety, and with lots of sliced carrots–lots of bright color and good crunch!)

Quick-cooking rice (again, your choice, but a healthier brown rice will also add a firmer texture and a nuttier flavor)

Granulated garlic, salt, pepper

Teriyaki sauce (low sodium is always a plus)

Boneless, skinless chicken breast (optional–this meal is totally delicious as a meat-free dish, too)


I marinate the chicken in the teriyaki sauce for as long as I can ahead of time. Usually at least an hour in the refrigerator is good, but whatever time you have is worth it. I also like to set the chicken on the counter about 10-15 minutes before cooking so it can come to temperature a little, which will help keep it juicier. I like to add the garlic and pepper while it’s marinating, too.

When I set the chicken out, I toss the veggies in boiling water and blanch them, drain them and set aside. In the same water I used for the veggies, I cook the rice according to package directions. *This will add more flavor to the rice and save water (aren’t you a superhero?!). If you really want to pump up the flavor, use chicken or vegetable stock instead of water to boil in. I drain the rice and empty it in the same bowl as the veggies, setting aside.

Then it’s time to bring your deep saute pan up to about medium heat, and just coat the bottom of the pan with a very thin layer of canola oil. While that’s heating, I slice the chicken into bite-size pieces and then toss it in the pan. I coat with teriyaki sauce and season with just a bit of salt (the teriyaki adds lots of it). When the chicken is cooked through, I toss in the rice and veggies, and add teriyaki sauce and vegetable (or chicken) stock until there’s just enough liquid to coat it all and loosen it up. You can add as much or as little as you like, tasting as you go.

This meal is delicious all hot and fresh, but it makes for great leftovers, after the flavors have a day or two to really mix in the refrigerator.

Ashley Terry 2011

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Recipe: Taco Pizza

I haven’t really shared any recipes on this blog, but I should tell you that I have a soft spot in my heart for good food. It makes me happy. Making my own good food makes me really happy, and on most days I’m quite content to end the workday making dinner with a nice glass of wine…it’s the little things.

I have three main vices: Mexican food, Italian food and dessert (any kind), and tonight I combined two of them because there’s really no way to go wrong there. It was actually Marlin’s idea, a taco pizza, but he didn’t have to do much convincing.

I’m sharing the recipe here because it was really quite tasty, but you should note that my recipes are not exact and I don’t always believe in measurements, so this should only be used as a guideline. And I always encourage making your own changes as you desire, because in my kitchen I’m executive chef and I imagine you feel the same way.

Taco Pizza

I don’t always have the time (who does?!) but when I do, I believe wholeheartedly in making your own pizza crust. Not only is it infinitely more delicious, but you just can’t beat the smell of fresh baked bread in the house and it’s quite therapeutic to knead the dough, especially if you’ve had a bad day. I wish I could take credit for my pizza dough recipe, but I got it from Emeril, so you can’t really argue with that. It’s perfect, and even though you have to wait for the dough to rise, it’s incredibly easy.

While the dough is rising, I prep my toppings so they’ll be ready to go.

In a deep saucepan, I saute lean ground turkey with 1 whole medium chopped onion (I like the sweeter yellow or red, but any color is fine) in olive oil. Season with salt when the turkey is cooked through and grate in 2 cloves of fresh garlic. Then I turn the heat down to low just to keep it warm and add 2 chopped tomatoes (I take out the seeds and most of the juice first, otherwise the sauce is too thin), 1 small chopped jalapeno, and your choice of green or red salsa. I prefer green tomatillo salsa because it’s lighter and has a nice tangy kick. I add just enough to cover the ingredients–you don’t want too much sauce. Then I just keep it warm until the dough is ready.

For the base of the pizza (where your tomato sauce would be on a traditional pie), I spread a thin layer of black bean hummus, which I make. The hardest part of this recipe is trying not to eat all of the hummus before you’re done cooking. It’s so good!

I use two cans of black beans, drained and rinsed in cold water. Then I dump them in the food processor with a little bit of canola oil and salt to flavor and I add just enough Cholula to give it a little kick. Process until smooth like a dip (you made need a little more oil to make it smoother).

After the dough has risen for about an hour, I roll it out on the pizza pan and pop it in the 450 degree oven (Emeril’s recipe says 500, but that’s too hot for my oven). I give it about five minutes just so it starts to firm up, then pull it out. I spread a thin layer of the black beans and pop it back in the oven for 2-3 minutes. Then I top it with the turkey mix and my favorite cheese and put it back in the oven until it’s nice and bubbly brown (that is a technical term–just ask Rachael Ray).

Let it cool and enjoy! We just had a glass of tea but you may prefer a margarita!

Ashley Terry 2011

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