Author: Mary Zalmanek

Beet salad

Beet Salad

I fell in love with beet salads long ago when the best way to prepare a beet was to steam it for an hour.  Since that salad took so long to prepare, we only ate it on special occasions. Several years ago I noticed something new (to me): packages of […]

Sweet and Spicy Pecans

Sweet and Spicy Pecans

If you are looking for a satisfying snack, try these Sweet and Spicy Pecans. I also keep some on hand as an addition to salads and veggie dishes. My dear friend, Bonnie Hildebrandt, created this recipe decades ago. Every time I read her recipe, I laugh. The heading on my […]



Calabacitas, a tasty Mexican squash and corn dish, is the perfect complement to tacos, burritos, and other Mexican entrees. My brother-in-law, Mark Zalmanek, developed this recipe after eating it in a Mexican restaurant many years ago.  Thank you, Mark, for another delicious recipe. The trickiest part of preparing calabacitas is cutting the […]

Herb Butter Salmon

Salmon with Herb Butter

Recently the brother of a dear friend reminded me of the first time we met decades ago. Hank said, “You grilled salmon with herb butter, and it was amazing!” I vaguely remembered a recipe like that, but I had no idea where I’d found it. Shortly after that I noticed tubes […]

Fried tacos

Grilled Tacos

Made with carnitas, diced chipotles, corn tortillas, and cheese, grilled tacos have  flavors similar to birria tacos, with a fraction of the effort. (They are grilled in a skillet or griddle like grilled cheese, not over a charcoal fire.) On a recent motorhome trip to Albuquerque, I struck up a […]

Roasted Radicchio Salad

Roasted Radicchio Salad

Roasted radicchio salad is my attempt to recreate the grilled radicchio salad we first ate decades ago at Lambert’s of Taos, a popular restaurant in northern New Mexico. Radicchio looks a bit like red cabbage, but it’s actually a type of chicory. It has more in common with artichokes and […]

Traditional Balsamic Vinaigrette

Traditional Balsamic Vinaigrette

A key ingredient of Grilled Radicchio Salad, a delicious salad we fell in love with at Lambert’s of Taos, is a traditional balsamic vinaigrette. The first time I tried to recreate this salad, I combined roughly equal parts traditional balsamic and olive oil. That works great for flavored white balsamic, […]

Chocolate oatmeal cookies

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

When I was a kid, one of my favorite treats was chocolate oatmeal cookies. My dad was usually the cook when it came to desserts, but this recipe was easy enough for my mom to make.  Recently I looked through their 3-ring binder filled with delicious recipes. I made these […]

Chutney Pepper Steak

Chutney Pepper Steak

Over the years, Jim and I have celebrated many special occasions in Colorado Springs at one of the Broadmoor Hotel’s restaurants or the Peppertree Restaurant. Often one or both of us would order the chutney pepper steak, which was flambeed at our table.  An advantage of tableside preparation is that […]

pear cranberry crisp

Pear Cranberry Crisp

When friends sent us a dozen Harry & David Bosc Pears for Christmas, I used several of them right away in two of my favorite salads: Pear Date Salad and Pear Blueberry Salad. That still left enough to make pear crisp for dessert three times over the next two weeks. […]