Author Archives: Michele Humlan

About Michele Humlan

Welcome to River City Good Eats, a blog with recipes and cooking tips emphasizing seasonal ingredients and regional delights. Since making my first scratch cake at age eight, I have been enamored with cooking and all things food.

Chicken Noodle Root Vegetable Soup

january 23, 2018

chicken noodle root vegetable soup

Nothing is more comforting in cold and flu season than a hot, steaming bowl of homemade chicken noodle soup. Snow days beg for soup, as do those days when your head is clogged and your body aches. You needn’t be ill, however, to appreciate hot soup! Winter is that season for something that tastes like you, or someone, cooked all day to make that special dish just for your nourishment and pleasure. Continue reading

Peppermint Fudge Ice Cream

january 6, 2018

peppermint fudge ice cream

What to do with all that Christmas peppermint candy? Ice cream, that’s what, even though frozen treats may not be at the top of your wish list with this chilly start to the new year. To that, I say eat more ice cream and allow your body’s internal engine to crank up the heat for digestion of this all- season creamy dessert. Continue reading

Lemon Ginger Cocktail

december 26, 2017

lemon ginger cocktail

 

Do you love ginger beer with its nose-tickling heat and sweet? You will love this cocktail. Tis the season for holiday entertaining and this cocktail pairs well with crunchy, creamy, salty, chewy nibbles of all kinds. Your guests will think you’ve been toiling for hours, but just a little prep ahead of  time makes for a last minute assembly of a stunning libation. Continue reading

Holiday Chocolate Bark

december 8, 2017

holiday chocolate bark

Given the choice : homemade treat made with love, or store bought. Tough choice, huh? Bet you got it right! The thrill of knowing someone has taken the time, and effort, to craft an edible gift just for you? Well, priceless. That’s what this recipe is all about.

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Herbed Goat Cheese Stuffed Dates

november 24, 2017

herbed goat cheese stuffed dates

 

 

Holiday entertaining season is now in full swing. Offering homemade refreshments to your guests is the ultimate expression of love and hospitality. We are all time-starved during the big rush, and premade items are good for last minute visitors. With a little planning, you can present your guests with pretty, and pretty impressive, nibbles to go with your best holiday beverages.

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Butternut Squash Gratin

november 10, 2017

butternut squash gratin

 

Each year at Thanksgiving, folks divide up into two camps. Sweet potato and no sweet potato. For the sweet potato lovers, further subdivision yields the sweet sweet potato side dish aficionados  (marshmallow people, I’m talking to you) and those who insist on savory sweet potato dishes at the holiday table, like my Ginger Scallion Sweet Potatoes. Me, I like it all. I grew up with what my parents referred to as candied yams, sweet potato chunks swimming in a sweet glaze and more of an afterthought to the meal. It was our duty to serve them, but no one was clamoring for their presence. And if memory serves, they were canned and not fresh, an oddity because of the global availability of sweet potatoes in autumn. Continue reading

Chicken and Asian Pear Salad

october 27, 2017

chicken and asian pear salad

Rotisserie chickens are everywhere. Everyone sells them : grocers, big box stores, specialty carryout restaurants and food trucks. You buy one, eat half for dinner, then wonder what to do with the rest. The options are many, from simmering the remainder for soup or making a mayonnaise-based chicken salad, to simply slicing off pieces for your lunchtime sandwiches. Roasted chickens are the ultimate convenience food for time-strapped people who love the taste without the fuss and mess. But on occasion I have looked at the ingredient list of some of these chickens, and there are words that sound suspiciously like a science experiment and there are also fake flavoring agents masquerading as “natural flavor” enhancers which certainly don’t do us any favors. Continue reading

Brown Sugar Sweet Potatoes and Apples

october 18, 2017

brown sugar sweet potatoes and apples

It’s not the easiest thing to plan fall menus when the humidity and temperature are still elevated past September. The calendar, however, clearly shows autumn is in full swing and I am getting mentally prepared. Local summer produce has an inner time clock that tells production to halt making way for fall delights like squashes, sweet potatoes and hearty greens. There is change in the air. A stroll around my  local farm stand with beautiful rusty-dusty sweet potatoes and fragrant multi-hued apples tumbling from bins and boxes can bring back my inspiration every time this season of bounty rolls around. Continue reading

Sausage Cheese Vegetable Bake

september 29, 2017

sausage cheese vegetable bake

For several years, my client menus have included something I like to call Summer’s Bounty Vegetable Bake with Italian Sausage Tomato Sauce and Cheeses. That’s a mouthful, both literally and figuratively. It’s my homage to farmer’s market and roadside stand vegetables, roasted and nestled between layers of meaty tomato sauce and gooey cheese. For my vegetarian clients, the dish is made without sausage and substituted with nuts. For a vegan version, there are some tasty soy based products that perform like sliced mozzarella and various vegan parmesan-like sprinkles found at local natural markets. Continue reading

Zucchini Walnut Spice Cake

september 15, 2017

zucchini walnut spice cake

You know who you are. You’re that coworker, that neighbor, that friend who pokes around in your late summer garden and notices that the zucchini are big like kiddie baseball bats, and also numerous. What to do? You give them away. Your recipients scratch their heads and murmur thanks, wondering what will become of this summer squash on steroids and how they can possibly transform it into something edible. Knock on my door and I’ll be your best buddy! And if I’m feeling particularly magnanimous I’ll give you a slice of this cake.

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