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Turkey Fricassee

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

Thanksgiving In Paris

I spent one of my favorite Thanksgiving holidays in Paris.

They call it the “City of Lights”, and it’s an apt descriptor. During the day, Paris is beautiful, and you can walk for miles without noticing how tired your feet might be. The city has so much to offer you hardly want to sit and take in a meal; ...Read more

Almond Snickerdoodles

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

Gunk Gone

I love learning new things in the kitchen.

I have been cooking since I was six years old, so I have over a half-century of culinary learning under my belt (wow, that makes me feel old).

Most of the time I’m inventing new recipes, so I learn things about the ingredients and the processes related to cooking all the time. I ...Read more

Pork Lion Roast in a Slow Cooker

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

Grocery Shopping, 70’s Style

In 1970, the average grocery store carried 8,000 items. Today’s average grocery store stocks 77,000 items. In the 70s when we went grocery shopping we didn’t pull up in front of a mega-building where you can pick up everything from tires to toys; apples to zucchini. Grocery shopping was different.

In ...Read more

Pumpkin Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /


When I was six years old I walked into our family kitchen on a Saturday morning and asked my mother if she would teach me how to cook. My mother was busy. My mother was always busy. She was raising seven kids. She was always doing laundry, ironing, doing dishes, shopping for food, cooking the next meal or shuttling us around. She ...Read more

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

Halloween Treats

I like Halloween more than Christmas. My husband and I used to have huge celebrations on Halloween. We’d throw a costume party and would invite friends over for food and drinks. Although we no longer have parties on Halloween, it is still my favorite holiday.

Apparently we’re not the only adults who get excited ...Read more

Fried Pound Cake with Cream and Fruit

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

Satisfying “Baby” Desserts
15 Grams or Less

Snacking has become a mindless activity. No wonder we have an obesity crisis. I never once saw my dad snacking on a bag of chips. My mom, either. They ate their meals at the prescribed time and that was it. On rare occasions I would see them indulge in a small dessert. We might be at ...Read more

Yogurt with Fruit and Nuts

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

Say Cheese!

Getting your information from the internet can give you scary results. What do I mean by ‘scary’? I mean false. There are things published on the internet that are patently wrong. Reader beware.

On the other hand, the internet is the biggest source of information on the planet. I remember the days when that shelf that ...Read more

Apple Chips

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /


While developing Plan Z, I never really thought much about what I now call the Crunch Factor. I was never the kid in our family that face-planted in the bag of potato chips. I left that to my brothers. I went for the donuts.

I never wanted to eat the hard candy. I’d rather have a brownie or ice cream for my treat.

After ...Read more

Porcini Mushroom Sauce

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

The Porterhouse Primer

As one of seven children, I didn’t eat a lot of steak as a child. There were just too many mouths to feed and we couldn’t afford it.

I do remember when most of the older kids had left home, my parents took to serving fondue on Sunday evenings. There were just two of us kids of steak-eating-age at the time, so ...Read more

Sloppy Joes

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

Gobble Gobble

The avian flu outbreak across the country has already taken a toll. The price of eggs has jumped a minimum of 13 percent but in some places has risen as much as 50 percent. That’s a lot of yuk to the yoke of your budget.

The price of eggs on the wholesale level has risen, too. That affects other things you buy in the ...Read more

Butternut Squash Breakfast Casserole

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

The Vegetable that Tastes Like Candy

Talk about a maligned and shunned vegetable! I’ve been walking by this golden beauty in my grocery store for decades. I thought they just looked like massively large peanuts.

We ate acorn squash in my family. We didn’t venture past the big green acorn to try out other options. I’ve totally ...Read more

Pork Loin Chops with a Sizzlin' Cherry Sauce

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

My Summer Vacation

It’s located in the woods, on 20 acres with a pond. An idyllic setting. Gardens all around. Walking paths and places to just sit and take in the view. There are bird feeders filled to the brim. About a hundred goldfinches arrive daily to take in the bounty. You can just sit and listen to lots of other birds or even ...Read more

Peanut Butter Dream

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

The Party Report

I think you all know we had a big party here at Plan Z HQ. It was a Saturday night blow out. For those of you who could not make it, or would just like the live vicariously, I’m going to lay out a few of the highlights of how it all came together and how it went during the night...

homeandleisure/recipes/zola/s-1711695">Read more

Peach Salsa

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

How Now Brown Cow?

“Sugar — in the form of lactose — contributes about 55 percent of skim milk’s calories, giving it ounce for ounce the same calorie load as soda” — Neal Barnard, President of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.

That just happens to be one answer to a question we get asked every day at Plan Z ...Read more

Chicken Alfredo with “Almost Noodles”

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

School Lunch

President Truman started the National School Lunch Program in 1946. A little over a decade later I was born. I went to a Catholic School as a child. Most every kid stayed at school for lunch. It was an expected part of the program.

My mother fairly regularly volunteered as a “lunch lady” at the school. She went in early...Read more

Sweet and Spicy Pecans

Recipes / Recipes by Zola /

Party Time

Next week I’ll be preparing food for 80. Most people gasp at the thought and want to know how I do it. So I thought I’d lay out a few of my strategies in today’s column.

I also wanted to share the party a bit with those of you who can’t come. Believe me when I say I understand. There are thousands of you spread across...Read more

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