Category Archives: TWSM Foodie Review

TWSM Recipe Review ‘Lasagna’

Growing up in an Italian household there was always some type of pasta or bread. Over the years when I got into the restaurant industry my love for lasagna grew even more because of how much I could experiment with it. I will say serving lasagna in a restaurant fashion is interesting at times and can be very annoying but, when it is done right it is so good. This is a basic recipe but still so good. As usual when I make this, I make several pans of it and freeze so that I always have some on demand.


  • 1-2 packages lasagna noodles
  • 1-2 jars of a good quality Marinara sauce
  • 22 ounces of ricotta
  • A container of Parmesan and Romano blend grated
  • Fresh parsley
  • Fresh basil
  • S&P
  • Dried oregano
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1-2 bags of Shredded Mozzarella
  • 1 bag of Shredded asiago

Boil the noodles in heavily salted water. You may need to cook two pots for both packages. Do not cook the noodles to al dente drain them about a minute to a minute and a half before. Next in a large bowl put in all the ricotta. Next mince garlic, parsley, and the basil. Put it in the bowl with the salt, pepper, dried oregano, and a heavy handful of the parmesan mixture.

Next mix it with a spoon and in a separate bowl add the shredded mozzarella, asiago, and the parmesan mixture. Now get your pan or pans together and start building. Here are how the layers should be from bottom to top: Sauce, noodles, ricotta, sauce cheese, noodle, ricotta, noodle, ricotta, sauce, cheese noodle, sauce, cheese.

Now you can either bake at 425 right away but I recommend putting in the fridge for 10-15 minutes to set then bake covered with foil for 30 minutes then uncover and bake until golden brown. Also rub the foil with olive oil so the cheese does not stick.

~The Prosperous Plate

TWSM Recipe Review ‘Cucumber and Radicchio Salad’


Cucumber and Radicchio Salad

I was missing the summer weather so I figured I would put together a summer salad as a side. If you are not familiar radicchio it is in the chicory family. Raw it has a bitter and spicy taste to it. It is fantastic when paired with something sweet or salty, the bitter balances out the flavors. A great addition to this salad would be cherry tomatoes and capers.

Prep Time: 5 minutes           Assemble Time: 2 minutes


  • 1 large cucumber
  • Half a head of radicchio
  • Fresh dill
  • Good quality Italian dressing
  • Fresh parsley
  • S&P
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • A small shallot
  • Olive oil
  • Lemon juice
  • Grated parmesan

First slice your cucumbers into half-moons, then cut the radicchio to the same size or smaller than the cucumbers. Now mince the fresh dill and add it to the bowl with the vegetables.

Now how much dressing you make will completely depend on your taste. I absolutely drowned mine, so I will not include the measurements. Roughly you will need 1.5 cups of the Italian dressing shaken, ½ cup of lemon juice, a hand full of parsley, the garlic and shallot, 1/3 cup of the parm, and S&P then blend it all together. You want it to be as thick as Caesar, if it is to lose add more oil or to thick add caper juice, lemon juice, or white balsamic. Once you have the desired texture taste it then adjust seasonings. Now just pour over the veggies and serve immediately. If you want to save some DO NOT dress all the salad. Only dress what you will serve then you can save and serve again with out it being watery.

~The Prosperous Plate

‘Experiencing the world one bite at a time.’

TWSM Recipe Review ‘Pan Seared Salmon’

Pan Seared Salmon

This is one of my all-time favorite recipes. The easiest and best way to cook salmon in my opinion. I don’t normally use sockeye salmon, but it was the freshest I could find at my local fish market. There are several differences in sockeye salmon. It has more of a red hue, usually thinner cut and it has less fat than a regular salmon. I prefer fatty salmon, but there are many perks to the sockeye. Like it is much better on the grill then a farm raised salmon because of the fat content.

Prep Time: 10 minutes                Cook Time: 10-15 minutes


  • Fresh dill
  • S&P
  • 1 lemon
  • Fresh salmon (Skin on!)

Pull your salmon out of the fridge and rinse it off. Run your fingers over the meat of the salmon and check for pin bones. If you find any you should be able to pull them out with your nails.

Next pat your fish dry and place skin up on a plate or board. Find your sharpest knife and make 3 cuts diagonally on the skin. Now you do not want to go deep, you just want to cut through the skin and barely into the meat. Next mince your dill and zest your lemon in a small bowl. Heavily season your fish with the S&P, lemon zest and dill. Make sure you get it inside the cuts you made.

Let the salmon sit and rest for 5-7 minutes until it is almost room temp. The reason you made the cuts is to draw out some of the liquid when the fish is sitting and when it is cooking.

When your time is up, put a nonstick sauté pan on your stove at about a 7 or medium high heat. When you pan is hot lay your fish down skin side first and lay it away from you (towards the back of your stove, so the oil splashes away from you). Leave this fish alone for 1-2 minutes on the heat and then move it to another burner and set it on about 4 or medium low. This is the key part you are going to wait and let it cook. The skin will protect it from burning and you will watch the heat rise through the fish slowly cooking it.

Once the fish looks like the bottom half is cooked turn the heat on another burner back up and carefully flip the fish. Now push the fish towards the sides of the pan so you sear the sides of the fish. Then move it back to the middle of the pan and leave it for about a minute. Then do the same thing as the beginning and move it to another burner. Give it about 3 minutes and temp it. Good quality salmon can be eaten raw and I like mine on the rarer side. The proper temp for cooked fish is 145 Fahrenheit. I wish I could describe how it feels when it is cooked properly but that is just something you pick up over time.


The Prosperous Plate


TWSM Recipe Review Chicken Or Turkey Soup


Everyone knows that a good homemade soup can take away any cold. This “base” recipe is a great building block for creating the perfect soup. I used some leftover turkey for this recipe. The best thing to use is left over chicken or rotisserie chickens. Trying to fight off a nasty cold? Load this soup with tons of extra garlic and cayenne pepper. It will help boost your immune system to fight whatever it may be. Whenever I make soup or broth, I always make a large amount to freeze, you never know when you might need some homemade soup.

Prep time: 20 mins                   Cook time: 3-4 hours


(Note: This list is a base-increase, decrease, add, or subtract any ingredients.)

  • 2 onions
  • 4 medium carrots
  • 5 celery stalks
  • 10 cloves of garlic
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Chicken bouillon to taste
  • 6+ quarts of chicken broth
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • Cayenne pepper to taste
  • 1 LB shredded turkey or 2 rotisserie chickens shredded

Find your biggest stock pot and place it on your counter. Get all your vegetables and cut them up how you please. Personally, I julienned my onions very thin and left my garlic in large chunks. Put all the vegetables into your stock pot with the bay leaves and start with about a tablespoon of salt, pepper, as well as a teaspoon of cayenne pepper.

Put your turkey or chicken on top of all the vegetables. Begin pouring your stock into the pot until it reaches the handles of the pot. Turn your stove to high and let it boil for about 25-30 minutes. During that time add your bouillon.

After about 30 mins reduce your soup to a medium low heat and cover. Let it simmer for several hours, at this point taste it and adjust your seasoning. Once you got the perfect seasoning let it simmer for a couple hours or until you get hungry. Store any extras in freezable containers to have the perfect soup for a dreary winter day.

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TWSM Recipe Review ‘Quick Braised Short Ribs’

‘Quick’ Braised Short Ribs 

This is one of the best cold weather recipes to start this holiday season. With most people still stuck at home with family or their pets, this recipe can feed a group of four or one. There are a variety of ways you can alter this recipe for a more traditional French, classic Italian, warming Indian, etc. Below I have taken a twist on a Korean braised short rib also known as Galbi-jjim. I wanted to keep those traditional flavors while making it easy for a home cook to replicate. This recipe has some kick to it so if spice isn’t your thing, I recommend making the gochujang 1 ounce instead. The only necessary item for this recipe is a cooking vessel that can handle 500 degrees Fahrenheit such as cast iron, a good quality metal, or a high-quality ceramic. If you would like to see other variations of this recipe or a full length braised short rib recipe, comment below or email my blog. Thank you and enjoy:)

Prep time: 15 mins                 Cook time: 4 hours roughly



  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 medium piece of ginger
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 pear
  • 2.5 ounces of soy sauce
  • 2 ounces of mirin AKA rice cooking wine
  • 2.5 ounces gochujang (The paste NOT flakes)
  • 2 ounces orange juice
  • 1.5 ounces of rice wine vinegar
  • 2 ounces sesame oil
  • A pinch of S&P
  • Secret Ingredient, 2.5 ounces of tomato paste


  • 2 pounds of short rib

 As I stated before there are many ways to start this recipe. Here’s how I did it… I started the day before and washed my ribs off. Then I soaked them overnight in water. Only plain water, yes you can make this a salt brine, but I wanted a “Cleaner” taste in my meat. You can also just soak the ribs for 4 hours instead. Don’t be alarmed when the water looks “bloody” that is normal. It is myoglobin, a protein that’s found in the muscle tissue of meat.

The next day preheat your oven to 500 degrees and place your cooking vessel in the oven while it preheats. While this is preheating remove the ribs from the water and rinse them off. Then pat them dry and season them heavily with salt and pepper. Next let them sit while you make the sauce. It’s very simple put every ingredient into a blender and blend together until you have a uniform sauce.

Next taste it and take a minute to see if you want to add anything else or adjust seasoning. You want the sauce to have almost a cake batter consistency, if it is too thin add more oil. If it is too thick add water.

Remove the pan from the preheated oven and place a small amount of oil in the pan then the ribs and quickly put back into the oven. It is going to smoke some wait about 10-15 minutes until the meat is lightly seared. Now remove the meat from the oven and pour the sauce over the meat.

Cover the pan with tinfoil and put back into the oven for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes drop the oven temp to 450 for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes drop the oven temp to 400 for an hour.

After an hour drop then the temp to 350 for 2 hours. Now after the last hour check the ribs if they are not falling off the bone cook another hour until they are.

Serve over rice and enjoy!

~The Prosperous Plate

TWSM Cheesy Shrimp & Grits Recipe Review

Cheesy Shrimp & Grits

On our first date, River and I got to know each other over a big plate of shrimp and grits at the local “date place” restaurant. We quickly bonded upon discovering we both enjoyed the dish as a favorite. Since then he and I have sampled shrimp and grits together at multiple restaurants in multiple cities. And no two dishes of shrimp and grits have been the same. I’ve wanted to discover a simple recipe for the dish that could be served as written or could be adjusted to include different flavors all with the same base so River and I could cook it together at home.

After trying several recipes, Self Proclaimed Foodies’ version of Cheesy Shrimp and Grits is the clear winner. It’s simple, but not simplistic, with full flavor from the cheese, shrimp stock, lemon juice, and Worcestershire sauce. I’ve made this recipe both with white wine and cooking sherry in the water to cook the grits and have discovered I like the richness from cooking sherry slightly more. Although choice either is delicious. I also used locally sourced and ground grits. While I know those might be challenging to find, a recipe like this really calls for the highest quality ingredients you can find and afford.

This recipe for shrimp and grits makes four servings. For date night, we only needed two servings, especially with a kale salad on the side. So River and I cut the recipe in half. This worked well, except we both felt it needed slightly more sauce. I’d encourage you to make the full amount of sauce. Any leftovers could be used for another dish later. I bet it’d be great on a lovely piece of sauteed cod! We also used bacon fat to sear the shrimp, opting to impart the smokiness bacon fat provides. The entire dish paired nicely with a dry prosecco. A crisp riesling would also be delicious.


Mini Almond Flour Chocolate Cakes

Mini Almond Flour Chocolate Cakes 

As I’m typing this I’m currently day three into a seven day self isolation period awaiting COVID-19 test results. Dylan has gone to spend a couple weeks with his dad. I top off my self isolation period by taking my mother to the hospital to have heart surgery (the reason behind the COVID-19 test). So I’m not exactly living my best life at the moment. In fact I’m trying hard to be grateful for the time alone for the first time since the end of March but occasionally failing.

I’ve rattled around my house alone after work hours knitting, sewing, listening to live stream music performances, binge watching Netflix and FoodNetwork shows, craving food I can’t go get, and wanting to do things that have to be put off for a few weeks. I’ve learned to find little ways to indulge in self-care. One of those ways calls for drowning my frustration with chocolate. And that’s okay. But drowning emotions in chocolate can also lead to food guilt. So I’m also trying to be gentle with myself. No dessert is perfectly healthy. Mini almond flour chocolate cakes from Snappy Gourmet are at least semi-keto friendly as well as gluten free. The recipe also makes only two servings. If you’re not quarantining you could share with a confidant. If you are alone, save the other serving on the counter or in the refrigerator for the next day.

Add a few berries for some freshness and whipped cream (from a can is fine!) to cut the richness of the chocolate on these almond flour cakes. Or splurge on a small scoop of vanilla ice cream like I did. Snappy Gourmet says you can substitute the almond flour for wheat flour if desired. I did not try that option.




TWSM Smoked Salmon Flatbread Pizza Review

Smoked Salmon Flatbread Pizza

One of the things I’m discovering about working from home is how nice it is to take a break and pop into my own kitchen to make my lunch. All the ingredients I may want are there. I don’t have to prep something at 6:30am. If I decide on something different or have a craving for something, it’s easy to change my mind. I can also take my lunch on the deck on nice days and enjoy fresh air while recharging for the afternoon tasks.

As a result I’ve been on the search for cool, easy to prepare, and tasty meals that may not have been considered for a lunchbox meal when I was working in an office away from home. Smoked Salmon Flatbread Pizzas by Three Many Cooks absolutely fit the bill. Even though this recipe is pricier than I would normally invest in, it was well worth the extra money. And because I prepared the flatbread only for myself (Dylan generally doesn’t care for seafood), I’ve been able to make the ingredients work for other meals as well. Smokey, salty, lemony, creamy… The smoked salmon flatbread with a lovely blend of flavors in the cream cheese, hit all the notes for me.

The recipe calls for using naan as the base for these flatbreads, which I think would be perfect. I’m in love with a gluten free pizza crust from a local bakery, so I used it instead. Otherwise, I followed the recipe exactly. Be sure to enjoy this with a cold glass of sparkling water and a squeeze of lemon to help cut the fattiness and richness of the cream cheese and smoked salmon. Or if serving this with a brunch, prosecco would be lovely. And we all know how much I love a good brunch. Leftover cream cheese spread is good on crackers for an afternoon snack. Extra smoked salmon would be nice on a personal charcuterie board for lunch another day.

TWSM Tuna Recipe Round-Up Review

Tuna Recipe Round-Up

Early on in the pandemic inspired-shutdowns and stay at home orders my boss gave me two cases of canned tuna. That’s a lot of tuna. Dylan and I quickly grew tired of the simple tuna salad sandwiches I normally make on a hurried Saturday afternoon full of chores and errands. A mission to find alternative recipes and ideas for canned tuna ensued. I asked friends and people on foodie Facebook groups for their favorites, and I tried several to narrow it down to our three favorites.


Tuna Casserole for One from One Dish Kitchen

Dylan and I made tuna casserole one rainy evening when we both needed comfort food. It was easy to double to make it “for two” and utilizes standard pantry staples. I did discover as I was preparing the dish there was no lemon juice in the house. Cooking sherry proved to be a good substitute that provided a richness and elevated the dish. I also included some celery for nostalgia and crunch. Tuna casserole was a hit, and I’m pleased to find a recipe that can be easily prepared even on evenings I’m alone.


Spicy Sriracha Tuna Wraps from Gimme Delicious


Who else misses sushi? There isn’t a sushi place open around my area yet, and I’m having withdrawals for a good spicy tuna roll. Spicy Sriracha Tuna was a wonderful substitute to satisfy my cravings for now. Because I needed something easier to eat than a wrap while eating lunch at my desk to meet a deadline, I turned the tuna mixture into a salad of sorts on a bed of spinach. Perfect for a working lunch! It would also be fantastic picnic fare. In addition to a wrap, I feel it would also be good stuffed in an avocado half or cucumber boat.

Easy Tuna Dip from Pamela Salzman

When I described this tuna dip via text to my dear friend River, he said “So it’s a tuna hummus,” which I thought was a good way of describing it. Because I never use anchovy paste, after some research, I substituted it for Worcestershire sauce, which worked perfectly. The capers provided a wonderful saltiness and “umammi.” I used the suggested white beans, although optional avocado would give this a nice creaminess I think would be fantastic. Dylan wasn’t interested in trying this tuna dip, so I was able to enjoy it all to myself on the deck one lazy Sunday afternoon following online church worship services. It was excellent with gluten free nut crackers, bell pepper slices, carrot rounds, and celery sticks. I think a good crusty toasted bread would also be a tasty choice.



TWSM Southwest Quinoa Salad Recipe Review

Southwest Quinoa Salad

Dylan and I are continuing to observe stay at home recommendations and social distancing. Even though we treat ourselves to a curbside pickup meal from a local restaurant on occasion, we’ve made almost 200 meals at home in the last two plus months. Because our tastes are often vastly different, we’ve come to a point sometimes I eat one thing and Dylan eats another. It works for us for now. Southwest Quinoa Salad from Kristine’s Kitchen is one of those meals I naturally gravitate toward, but Dylan wouldn’t enjoy.

This past week the weather looked like it was going to warm up for several days. I was craving something cold as well as filling. A green salad wasn’t going to cut it. I also had a bag of quinoa in my cabinet. Did you know quinoa is naturally gluten free, low in fat, and high in protein, fiber, and iron? It makes an excellent addition to a vegetarian meal. Quinoa is also extremely versatile. It can be eaten cold or hot; in salads; as filler for patties; as substitution for rice; even toasted in granola!

This southwest quinoa salad is no different. The first night I ate this salad was cold as a side with a piece of cod sauteed with butter and seasoned with chili powder. The next day the weather turned cold and rainy, and I served myself a big bowl of the salad warmed with a slice of homemade bread for lunch. I’ve enjoyed it both ways. While I haven’t tried it yet, I also think it would be good mixed with an egg for binder, formed into a patty and shallow fried. Several comments I read on this recipe noted the addition of chicken to the mixture, which I think would be delicious!

No matter how you serve southwest quinoa salad, it’s a great recipe to have in your rotation for an easy summer supper, a side dish with chicken or fish, or in a medley of other salads.