How to Ripen and Prepare Kiwifruit – All in Pictures

Fresh, ripe kiwifruit (kiwi)

I love kiwifruit (also known as kiwi, named after New Zealand’s national bird) for its fresh zesty flavor, texture and potent nutritional punch. And, wow, all that good stuff means so much more during the winter months when fresh produce with real life to it is tough to find.

Kiwis are actually native to southern China, where they’re known as Chinese gooseberries, but are now grown plentifully around the world. They have a wonderfully fresh fruity flavor that’s a cross between bananas, strawberries and pineapple. They’re rich in vitamins A, C and E, and their black seeds, when crushed or chewed, are an excellent source of beneficial Omega-3 fatty acids. Ripe kiwis are slightly tender to the touch. Usually, though, the fruit comes to market under-ripe and very firm. The easiest way to ripen under-ripe kiwis is to put them in a paper (not plastic) bag, close the top the way you would close a lunch bag, and keep the bag at room temperature out of direct sunlight. You can see how to do that by clicking either picture on this page for complete easy to follow step-by-step picture book directions. Just beware ripening takes at least a few days – sometimes more than a week. Read more »

Quick & Easy Warm Spinach & Pear Salad – All in Pictures

Warm Spinach and Pear Salad

No matter where you live, I’ve gotta’ imagine the weather, and specifically, the temperatures you’ve had the pleasure of experiencing, have hardly been consistent this winter. With that in mind and considering it just cooled down rapidly – even with wildly blowing wind and snow this week, here’s a very quick and easy way to heat up a fully flavorful sweet and savory salad made with spinach, pear and your choice or a combination of walnuts, dried cranberries and feta (or any cheese) that’ll warm your body and soul on a bone chilling night. Emmm…you bet! Read more »

Coow Woow’d at the Wayside!

Coow Woow Cocktail

I got a short, direct comment from a friend on Facebook saying that a family-favorite whiskey & ginger ale recipe I’d recently posted is a  “descendent of the coo(w) woo(w) – America’s oldest cocktail, still served at the Wayside Inn in Sudbury, MA: Ginger brandy and rum”.

Yah, all right! So, two Sundays ago after getting off the ice teaching kids skating in Marlborough, I drove to the Wayside, which for years has been one of my favorite magical cycling destinations. The place looked great that night with snow on the ground contrasted by warmly lit windows still decorated with holiday wreaths.

Wayside Inn, Sudbury, MA

The bar was a quick right just inside the front door. It’s apparently one of the original rooms from when the house was first built in the 1700’s. The room’s small, all wood floor to ceiling, and had a fireplace that was full-on. I asked the bartender, Rich, about the Coow Woow. As I recall, which you’ll soon find out became kind of sketchy, I thought he told me the drink was made 3 parts white rum, 2 parts ginger brandy. He asked if I wanted a sample. You bet. Read more »

Quick & Easy Brussels Sprouts Chips – All in Pictures

Brussels Sprouts Chips

Really? Brussels sprouts chips an excellent quick, flavorful and even healthy alternative to commercially bagged chips? “C’mon, Bruce. What’s on tap next – fried celery just as good as a hot fudge sundae?” All I can say is: I didn’t believe it either.

In fact, I was never a big Brussels sprouts fan until I was very recently introduced to this recipe and another recipe made with Brussels sprouts, bacon and onions that I’ll lay out real soon. All I can say is try them – my kids and I loved ’em – and then let me know what you think.

Here’s all you need to make these chips. As always, just click any picture on this page for a direct link to an easy to follow step-by-step picture book recipe.


  • 1 Pound Brussels Sprouts
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive or Vegetable Oil
  • Dash of Salt
  • Ground Black Pepper

Ingredients needed to make Brussels Sprouts Chips


  • Baking Pan
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Potholder or Folded Dishtowel
  • Colander or Strainer
  • Small Sharp Knife
  • Tablespoon
  • Bowl

Equipment needed to make Brussels Sprouts Chips

Whiskey and Ginger Ale – All in Pictures and More!

Whiskey & Ginger Ale

Here’s a really simple and flavorful drink to make that’s been a winter tradition in my family, especially with freshly roasted chestnuts. Great stuff! Funny thing: I posted the drink on The Good Men Project the other day, promoted it on Facebook this morning and right away got a comment from a friend that the drink is a “(d)escendent of the coo woo – America’s oldest cocktail, still served at the Wayside Inn in Sudbury: Ginger brandy and rum”. The Wayside is one of my favorite biking destinations – I just zipped by it yesterday. Gorgeous! Here’s a shot of the place, and…

Wayside Inn, Sudbury, MA

…yah, that’s where I’ll be early this evening after teaching skating not far away at all in Marlborough. More about that – with pictures – real soon!

Here’s all you need to make whiskey and ginger ale. As always, just click any picture for a complete step-by-step picture book recipe. Just a note on whiskey: I prefer Canadian blended whiskey for this – in our family, we call the drink “Canadian Club and ginger ale”, but any whiskey will work.

Needed to make Whiskey & Ginger Ale




Hot or Cold Cereal with Egg Nog – Quick, Easy and All in Pictures

Hot or Cold Cereal with Egg Nog

Happy New Year!

Wow, the holidays come and go so incredibly quickly. Here’s a great way to hold onto holiday flavor by substituting egg nog for milk with your favorite hot or cold cereal. Just click either picture on this page for a complete, easy to follow step-by-step picture book recipe.

Here’s a picture showing all you need to make it. Easy. And, yah, you’ll see a few more ingredients than just cereal and egg nog. Those added ingredients are just suggestions to give you an idea about how you can vary the flavor. As always, though, imagination is your only limit.

Hot or Cold Cereal with Egg Nog Ingredients & Equipment

Fresh Whipped Cream: Quick & Easy Step-By-Step Picture Book Recipe

What doesn’t go great with whipped cream? I have the measuring cup you’ll see in this recipe loaded and good to go in the refrigerator whenever I need it. Fresh whipped cream goes great in coffee, on pancakes, French toast or with fresh fruit – and it’s incredibly easy to make! Just click the picture above for a direct link to easy to follow step-by-step picture book directions.

Mind Food: Olga Serebrennikov and Math Altitude Take Thinking to New Heights

I commented to a fellow and very friendly Corridor Nine Chamber of Commerce member at a local food drive recently that downturned faces are everywhere. I see those sad, stress-etched faces in grocery store aisles, on sidewalks and in cars driving by on the road. My Chamber friend Karen smiled and agreed. Read more »

Turkey Leftovers? Turkey Nachos: Quick, Easy and All in Pictures

Got turkey leftovers? No problem! Just click any picture on this page for step-by-step picture book directions showing how to make turkey nachos quickly and easily. All it takes is your favorite corn (or any) chips, leftover turkey, canned beans (optional) and melted cheese topped with your choice or a combination of sliced avocado, chopped tomato, chopped onion, sour cream or plain yogurt and/or salsa. Read more »

Quick & Easy Pie Crust Made From Scratch Step-By-Step Picture Book Recipe

What’s Thanksgiving without pie? You gotta’ have it!

Pie fillings are usually very easy. But what about the crust?

I used to think pie crust was too delicate and required being way too precise even to want to try to make it on my own. But last year I gave it a shot. My first crust turned out fine though it stuck like glue to the waxed paper as I rolled it out because I very purposefully blew off the part in the directions I used that mentioned refrigerating the dough before rolling it out. Read more »

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