Step one of butterflying a chicken breast - slicing from the side with hand on top

Butterflying and Halving Chicken Breasts

March 18, 2015

I love to cook chicken because it’s so versatile, and always have a few breasts in the freezer. Now, is it just me, or are chicken breast halves getting larger and larger these days? I find that, most of the time, one breast half is plenty to serve two people. The problem is how to… Read more »

basket filled with Blueberry Lemon Muffins

Muffin Baking Tips

March 10, 2015

I love to make muffins. They are super easy to prepare, and tend to freeze well, so you can make a bunch and have some ready for later. Here are some tips for making your muffins come out great every time: Don’t over mix your batter. Just mix until the ingredients are blended. If you… Read more »

pancakes-with-blueberries-and-syrup

Pancakes – when to flip?

February 9, 2015

I love to make pancakes as a special treat for Robert’s breakfast on Sunday mornings from time to time. To my mind, the key to a good pancake is cooking it through to a golden brown color, without drying it out. In my cooking classes, I often get two questions about pancakes – how to… Read more »

Buying and storing fresh ginger

January 9, 2015

I love the flavor of ginger, and you will find it in many of our recipes (see some examples below). I especially like to use fresh ginger when I can. When purchasing ginger, look for 2 to 4-inch long pieces in the produce section of your grocery store. It’s often in a basket. Make sure… Read more »

Get the particulars on plums

December 4, 2014

When you ask folks to name a stone fruit, they’re apt to say peaches, cherries or even apricots. Sometimes overlooked for flashier fare, the plum is a delectable, low-calorie choice that’s packed with nutritious value. Sometimes called a gage, the plum boasts more than 2,000 varieties. Here in the U.S., fruit connoisseurs can choose from… Read more »

White Chocolate: Not really chocolate?

December 3, 2014

As it turns out, white chocolate shouldn’t really be called ‘chocolate’ at all! Interestingly, chocolate must contain chocolate liquor to receive the chocolate moniker. Good white chocolate contains cocoa butter, sugar, milk solids, vanilla and lecithin. Despite that, white chocolate likely got its name for the similar way that it’s made in relation to its… Read more »

Health benefits of chocolate

November 20, 2014

Have you had your flavonoids today? Once you know the benefits of what was once called Vitamin P, you’ll be asking yourself this daily! Derived from natural sources, flavonoids help protect plants by shielding them from environmental toxins and helping repair damage. Where does one find these flavonoids with antioxidant power? Chocolate! Flavanols are the… Read more »

Jam, Jelly, Preserves, Marmalade – what’s the difference?

November 16, 2014

Some people like jam, some like jelly, some insist on marmalade. What’s the difference? Let’s start first with what they have in common – they all are basically some sort of fruit that has been combined with sugar, boiled until the sugar dissolves and then put into sterilized jars. So, what differentiates them? Jellies –… Read more »

Storing, Cleaning and Using Fresh Mushrooms

October 15, 2014

You know the difference between a white button, cremini and shiitake, but do you know how to keep mushrooms at their freshest? Mushroom care begins the moment you arrive home from the grocer. If your mushrooms are loose, transfer them to a paper bag with the top loosely folded over. You’ll then want to get… Read more »

Lee Clayton Roper

Welcome!

I’m Lee Clayton Roper, and I’m passionate about making cooking and entertaining easy, elegant and fun. Here you’ll find scrumptious recipes, helpful tips and seasonal menus that will spark inspiration in your kitchen!
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