4 Labor Day Burgers!

Buffalo Chicken Burger

What is YOUR favorite burger?



Juicy Beef PattiesBonus Patty Making Tip

Or do you prefer pulled pork?

Smoked Pork Sandwich
Smoked Pulled Pork with BBQ Sauce & Bonus Smoking Tip

What's your bun of choice?

Honey Whole Wheat? 

Honey Whole Wheat Buns

Crusty, chewy, French bread?

Crusty French Bread Buns

Oh, and you should try the Classic Burger Sauce.  You'll never go back to ketchup and mustard...

Classic Burger Sauce

Any way you like your burger, make sure you enjoy it with family and friends.

Have a safe, wonderful and food-filled holiday!


6 Cherry Lime Ricky & So Much More!

The weather is cooling down in Utah, but you never know when the heat will turn up!  Using OXO's cherry pitter gave me an idea. 

Why not make my own cherry juice?

Cook the juice even further and you will have cherry syrup!

Just think.  Cherry syrup that is all natural, with no artificial flavors or ingredients!

Think of all the ways you can use your homemade cherry syrup:

As a dessert topping.

Waffle or pancake topping.

Italian soda anyone?

Put a spoonful or two into your favorite soda: Lemon/Lime, Cola, or Dr. Pepper.  Add a dash of real vanilla ... or ...

How about a Cherry Lime Rickey?

Not too sweet, with the tang of lime, this is the perfect summer-ending drink.

I love knowing that I am not adding anything artificial!

I made this with club soda.  You can use chilled water, if desired.


Print Friendly and PDF
Cherry Lime Rickey
Ice in 12 oz glass
1 T. (.5oz) fresh squeezed lime juice
2 T. (1.5 oz) cherry syrup* or more to suit your taste
8 oz seltzer soda water

*Cherry syrup:
1 pound dark sweet cherries, pitted
1 cup sugar
2 cups water 

Put ice into a drinking glass.  Add lime juice, cherry syrup and soda water. 
Stir and serve with a slice of lime on the glass rim.

To make cherry syrup:
In a small saucepan over high heat, combine ingredients and stir.  
Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce to simmer and cook for 20 minutes, or until mixture is reduced by half.
Pour mixture through a fine strainer, reserving the liquid and discarding the skins. 


2 Homemade Cherry Juice & Syrup

After trying OXO's cherry pitter, I decided to make cherry syrup.  It is so simple, so easy, and tastes great with a variety of foods.  Pour this on your pancakes, waffles, French toast, ice cream, or simply stir it in your favorite Coke drink.

All you need is one pound of dark sweet cherries, pitted and one cup of sugar...

Add 2 cups of water and stir.

Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce it to a simmer.

Simmer for 20 minutes and pour mixture through a fine sieve or strainer...

I like to use a rubber spatula to push the fruit against the strainer and get more juice.

Toss the skins.  At this point, you will have cherry juice!  Serve cold and drink it up.  It's good!

If you want a cherry syrup, all you need to do is put the juice back into the saucepan and simmer for another 20 minutes, or till it is reduced to half.  You will notice that it will darken and thicken.

Refrigerate until ready to use; it will keep for several weeks.

Stay tuned for a Cherry Lime Rickey recipe ... a cool refreshing drink that I'm sure you will love!

Print Friendly and PDF
Cherry Juice & Syrup 
1 pound dark sweet cherries, pitted
1 cup sugar
2 cups water


In a small saucepan over high heat, combine ingredients and stir.  Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce to simmer and cook for 20 minutes, or until mixture is reduced by half.
Pour mixture through a fine strainer, reserving the liquid and discarding the skins. This is your cherry juice.  For syrup, return to saucepan and simmer for another 20 min. until thickened and reduced by half.
Refrigerate the syrup until ready to use; it should keep for several weeks.
Add syrup to carbonated water, lime juice or lemonade for a refreshing drink or on French toast or ice cream. 


18 Stephens Fry Sauce, Utah State Fair, & TWO Giveaways!!

If you have been in Utah, you have heard of fry sauce.

If you try to ask for fry sauce anywhere outside of Utah, you will be met with a blank stare and the words, "Fry ... what?"

I've heard of many versions of fry sauce, but the basic formula is mayonnaise and ketchup.  My son prefers more ketchup, hubby prefers more mayo.

Now we have the perfect combination;  in a bottle, ready to dip and eat ~

introducing Stephen's Fry Sauce!

Yes, Stephen's makes my favorite mint chocolate gourmet cocoa, and now they are making another Utah favorite: fry sauce.

 Hey, it's not just for fries ...

 It's for hamburgers, corn dogs and whatever you can think of!

Doesn't that look good?  It is.  It is not simply ketchup and mayo... it is mild, with a very slight tang, which will be pleasing to even the pickiest of family members.

Never tried it?

Want to win some?

You can!

Stephen's has graciously given me TWO bottles to give away to two of my readers!

It's easy to enter.  Use the Rafflecopter widget below. It's open to ALL my US readers!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

But wait ...

There's more!

Wanna take your family to the Utah State Fair Sept 6-16?

Stephen's is offering two family passes (four tickets each) for TWO of my readers!  Yay!
I will also mail a bottle of Stephen's Fry sauce to each of the winners.  How does that sound?

Here's how to enter:
(1) Think of a recipe that highlights Stephen's Fry Sauce (beyond the burger) or what you love to dip into their fry sauce. Make sure you enter it as a comment at the bottom of this post. Be as creative as you can and Stephen's will feature your recipe on their FaceBook page!

(2) Enter using Rafflecopter.  There are four easy ways to enter!

At a local parade, the lady next to me was dipping her bagel into a bowl of fry sauce!  She told me she loved it better than cream cheese.  That's saying a lot.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow Stephen's Fry Sauce on FaceBook
Follow Stephen's Fry Sauce on Twitter

$1 OFF Stephen's Gourmet Fry Sauce Coupon!!  Available till Sept 1, 2012 .... hurry!

Stephen's Fry Sauce is graciously sponsoring the Utah State Fair giveaway and has provided the bottles of Fry Sauce for sample and giveaway.  No other compensation was provided and all opinions stated are 100% my own and not influenced in any way. 


28 IKEA Love & A Cool Kitchen Tool Giveaway!

I have to admit, before IKEA came to my town, I couldn't understand what all the hoopla was about.  My friends and neighbors were traveling over 600 miles to visit this store in another state.

Now I understand why.

At first glance, you may take a look at their simplified, ready to assemble, modernist style furniture and think to yourself, "That is not my style."

But IKEA is more than just furniture.   Take a closer look and you will appreciate the ingenuity behind their designs.  Space-saving organization comes to mind when I think of IKEA.

Eco-friendly is something else that should come to your mind as well.  IKEA has a goal of running their company on 100% renewable energy, with a wind farm in Sweden and using solar power in the Draper, Utah location, the first of its stores to do so.

IKEA has rolled out their NEW 2013 catalog and is worth taking a look!

The Marketplace is where I love to shop at IKEA.  Here are some of my favorite finds!

Fill several of these with ice water or juices for your next dinner or brunch

Pressure cooking is fast and affordable!

This is pure genius ... A silicone magnetic trivet!  

Speaking of genius, I LOVE these clips!

 They are one of my cool kitchen tools ~ I have so many uses for them.  A package of 30 comes with 20 small (2") and 10 large (4") clips and cost under $2.

These clips have SO MANY USES!  Take a look ...

These clips:

Close my decorating bag for frosting, deviled eggs, and even churros!

Keep my bread fresh ...

Keep my crackers and chips from going stale ...
Fold bag into thirds and clip

Chips stay fresh and crisp

Keep my trail mix from spilling everywhere...

Keep my marshmallows soft...These are peppermint marshmallows from *gasp* last December.

Help squeeze every last ounce of toothpaste...

and help keep my cords organized!

To share the IKEA love, I'm giving away a bag of these clips AND a magnetic trivet!
Please follow the easy Rafflecopter instructions...I do check and verify the winning entry!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

IKEA of Draper invited a group of bloggers and provided us with a yummy breakfast and a small stipend to spend however we chose. Opinions expressed are 100% mine and not influenced in any way.  The giveaway is sponsored by Frieda Loves Bread, a lover of IKEA kitchen products.


2 Cool Kitchen Tool: OXO Cherry Pitter

Have you seen OXO's new cherry pitter?

Let's see if this qualifies as a Cool Kitchen Tool ...

This cherry pitter measures 5 1/4" x 3 1/4".  It has a locking gray tab on the end, which makes this tool easy to store.

The splatter shield twists off for easy (dishwasher safe) cleaning and for more compact storage.

The handles are made with a heavy duty, pressure absorbing non-slip rubberized plastic. The rounded corners feel comfortable in my hand.

Simply put the cherry stem side up and give it a quick squeeze.  It is helpful to keep the clear plastic removable "splatter shield" close to the surface or bowl to further minimize the juice splatter.

The pit comes out easily and cleanly, leaving the cherry intact with its flesh and juice.

I pitted 1 pound of cherries in minutes and only found 2 pits that stuck to the cherry itself.

Does this tool serve more than one purpose?

Of course!  You can use it to pit olives... I need to try this on Kalamata olives.

Will I use it often? Most definitely, even if it is only during cherry season.

You can find this at Williams Sonoma for $13, Linens & Things $19.99 (free shipping) or Amazon.com for $12.99.

That makes it a great deal and one Cool Kitchen Tool!

I love OXO products and they sent me this product to use and review.  I was not compensated monetarily and all opinions expressed are 100% mine.  Thanks, OXO!
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