Profiteroles with Chocolate Sauce Recipe – A Sweet Ending

Where do I start this post?  I have written it 4 different ways to date.  I want this post to be one that I share with you that will really inspire you to get all of the family time you can with your loved ones, because life really can turn on a dime (cliche, but all too true).

On May 4, 2008  Jeff was sweaty, hot and tired, but he had done what he set out to do.  He ran the Cincinnati Flying Pig Marathon to benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.  He felt good that after training so hard he had finished the race and he had raised so much money for this cause.

He did not know at the time that within weeks he would soon get devastating news, that he had been diagnosed with a very rare autoimmune disease, Amyloidsis, that would almost take his life.  He would be helped in his recovery by the same Leukemia & Lymphoma Society he had just run the race for…..soon he was to be in a race for his life.

Jeff has an interesting background.  He traveled the world with his parents and actually went to high school in Paris.  Eventually he would move back to the states for college and re-connect with a pretty girl that he had known since junior high, Sabrina.  They fell in love, got married and promptly moved to France so that Jeff could study at the highly acclaimed La Varenne culinary school.  After graduating from this renowned institution, Jeff and Sabrina traveled the globe and Jeff cooked for many celebrities, including Margaret Thatcher.

Jeff and Sabrina finally settled down back in the States and had two beautiful, intelligent daughters, Spencer and Matisse.  No one ever had to tell Jeff that his family was important.  Even with that being said, his illness and recovery has given him a very special insight into just how fragile life is and how everyday is a special blessing to be enjoyed and to be thankful.

Jeff’s illness was critical and he underwent extensive treatment including a bone marrow transplant and was in the Mayo Clinic for months, hundreds of miles from his precious family. Thankfully, after so many months the treatment was successful and Jeff was able to return to his family and he has been free from Amyloidsis since that time.

When Jeff finally got to return home he arrived with a new sense of purpose and dedication to his family.  He could not leave the house for quite awhile because his immunity was low and he was very susceptible to disease.   It was almost Christmas….Jeff stayed home and baked for his family for weeks….what did he bake?  He baked all of the cookie recipes that his mother had left so lovingly for his family in a handwritten cookbook that she presented to him in her own handwriting.  Every day the family came home to freshly baked treats made by dad with love from their grandmother’s recipes.

Jeff wanted me to share his very special story with you so that you can see why it is so important to carve out the time to be with your family because we really never know when a chair at the table might soon be empty.  You don’t need to say…..woulda, shoulda, coulda….just set the table and enjoy each other right now.

A very special thing has happened after I talked to Jeff about doing this story.  He has been nominated for “Man of the Year” by the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.  Wow……it really could not have happened to a nicer, more deserving guy.

I have volunteered to raise money for his cause, and you can too by making a donation, which in turn becomes a vote for him for “Man of the Year”.  Please, if you can,….help to make this possible.

Here is the link to his story in his own words and how you can vote for him by contributing to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Oh yes, back to the recipe for this week.  Jeff and his girls first baked this for Christmas dessert right  after his recovery… now is one of their all time favorites….please don’t be afraid to make it….it’s not as complicated as it appears…..2 young girls made it right in front of my eyes (with just  a bit of help from dad).  Perhaps you might want to make these tasty treats next Sunday for Easter!


Profiteroles with Chocolate Sauce

Yield: 2 Dozen

Prep Time: 25 Minutes

Total Time: 55 Minutes


Pate a Choux:
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup whole milk
1 stick plus one tablespoon unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup flour
6 large eggs - 1 egg is for the egg wash

Chocolate Sauce:
1/2 to 3/4 cup of heavy cream
8 oz. Valrhone chocolate (or fine quality chocolate), finely chopped

1 - quart vanilla ice cream


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper or lightly butter and flour the cookie sheets.

In a saucepan, place water, milk, butter and salt and bring to a boil and stir making sure that the butter is completely melted. Reduce the heat to low and add 1 cup of flour and cook for 3 minutes mixing rapidly with a wooden spoon. Transfer the mixture into a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat for 2 minutes so the mixture can cool.

Brush with egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1/4 cup water) and gently press the peaks down so that they do not burn. Bake for approximately 30 minutes till golden brown. Remove from oven and place on cooling rack.

Add the 5 eggs, one at a time, mixing well between additions. Important: turn off the mixer when adding each additional egg. Beat at fast speed for 1 - 1 1/2 minutes making sure the dough recovers its original texture before the next egg is added. Spoon dough into a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip. Squeeze out golf ball size amounts onto the cookie sheet.

Place the finely chopped chocolate into a bowl.

In medium saucepan add cream and let it come to a boil. Pour 1/2 cup of cream onto chocolate and stir with a wisk till combined. If the sauce is a bit too thick, add more cream a little at a time till you reach the consistency you desire (we used 3/4 cup of cream when we prepared this sauce). Sauce may be placed back in saucepan or double boiler to keep warm.

When ready to serve, cut the profiteroles in half, place a scoop of ice cream on the bottom half, cap with top half and spoon on the chocolate sauce.


Health Benefits of Eating Blueberries

Blueberries, oh how I love them, fresh picked or frozen.  Personally, I buy organic blueberries because of possible pesticide residue, and they are reasonably priced if purchased frozen.

One cup of blueberries contain only about 84 calories.  They are loaded with vitamins A, C and K and they also have significant amounts of potassium and water.  Blueberries are also a good source of fiber which our bodies need to prevent constipation and maintain bowel integrity.

This little berry contains loads of antioxidants, more than most other fruits or vegetables.  One of these antioxidants is anthocyanin.  Studies suggest that anthocyanin may help prevent cardiovascular disease. What else can antioxidants do?  They may protect us from free radical damage to cells and tissue.

Blueberries contain compounds that promote urinary tract health by preventing bacteria from adhering to the lining of your bladder and urethra.

Also, blueberries are high in anthocyanosides.  Studies have found that anthocyanosides may slow down vision loss and may delay some age related eye problems such as cataracts,  glaucoma and macular degeneration.

So, if you are looking for a fruit that’s delicious and beneficial for good health, you’ve just found it!

Disclaimer – Please note: the information presented is not intended as a diagnosis, treatment or prevention of any disease.  Please consult your physician if you are having any medical problems.

Benefits of Eating with your Family

Did you know that a study at Harvard Medical School discovered that children who ate with their families 4 times a week were 15 percent less likely to be overweight?

Food Blog Forum Seminar – A Wonderful Experience!

I’d like to share with all of you my wonderful weekend in Orlando.  No, amusement parks were not what made it wonderful….the folks at the Food Blog Forum were!  I can’t think of a better way to spend my wedding anniversary….well, maybe I can…but this was warm, sunny and filled with happy memories and that works for me.

We started the weekend at a “meet and greet” at Whole Foods where we were served delicious food and wine, including a creme brulee station!  I got the chance to meet some of my heroes in the food blogging world and make many new friends.

Saturday we all gathered at the Rosen College of Hospitality Management where Julie Deily of (who along with Jaden Hair and Dawn Viola, organized and hosted the event) did the introductions.  The energy was great from the start!

I was inspired time and time again, by the lovely and oh, so talented Jaden Hair of and her husband Scott, a fabulous motivational speaker.

Jaden Hair of

We heard about professional journalism and practices and how to get on a food editor’s radar from Jeff Houck of the Tampa Tribune and Heather McPherson of the Orlando Sentinel.

Next came Lindsay Landis of and Peter Scott of who spoke about SEO, design, and promotion.

A personal highlight was hearing Helene Dujardin of Tartlette explain her award winning techniques for food styling and photography.

Helen Dujardin of Tartlette

Lastly, Dawn Viola of charmed us and made us laugh while she gave tips on how to expand our readership.

I left the seminar (after winning a Le Creuset casserole!!)  knowing that I am on the right path to fulfill my goal of sharing my dream with all of you.

Later that evening, we all indulged in more great food and drinks at McCormick and Schmick’s  (the Florida Red Grouper with roasted plantains and black beans was my favorite!). They even closed their restaurant to entertain us!!!

Moving forward, I hope to make this blog even better and I’m more enthusiastic than ever to share my (but more importantly, your) Sunday supper stories!Update:  If you would like to see how my blog has improved, please check it out!

Blueberry Muffin Recipe – A Down East Treat

I wasn’t prepared to fall in love with Maine, but I fell quickly and hard.  It started innocently enough….short family trip to a small town.  I knew that Maine was different when I stepped off the plane in Bangor and everything was so much easier than any other airport that I had been to in years.  It was small, welcoming, and easy to navigate.

We got in our little blue rental car and headed to Camden.  We drove past beautiful small towns, fishing villages and fragrant forests…that is what is one of my favorite things about Maine…the heady smell of pine and sea air.  We arrived at a grey shingled mansion built in the 1800’s for a wealthy family to escape the heat of Boston.   This “summer home” was now converted to a sunny bed and breakfast.  We were given a tour of the grounds and we were shown into the large, Victorian kitchen and presented with a big cookie jar filled with freshly baked,  chocolate chip cookies and we were invited to raid the cookie jar any time of the day or night!  That set the tone for the whole trip.

We walked into town past lovely homes and well-tended gardens filled with the flowers of summer.  We past the Camden harbor filled with all manner of boats…large and small sail boats, motor boats and, of course, fishing boats.

View from the end of our street.

We meandered our way to a small restaurant that had been recommended.  As soon as we sat down, we were served a lovely basket of blueberry muffins.  I will always remember that day and those muffins.  They were small, warm muffins brimming with fresh blueberries.

In the years to come we would return to Maine often.  We would rent a tiny, apartment with a large deck where you could sit under the stars and view “where the mountains meet the sea”.  We would cook many Sunday suppers there with fresh ingredients purchased from the farmer’s markets.  Blueberries found their way into many of the dishes we prepared.

This is my adaptation of the blueberry muffins from Down East.


Blueberry Muffins

Yield: 12 average size muffins

Prep Time: 20 Minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 55 Minutes


2 cups sifted flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup milk
6 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
2 cups of fresh or frozen blueberries
1/4 cup confectioner's sugar


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease muffin cups. Line with paper liners if you like.

Sift together flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Blend in the lightly beaten eggs, vanilla, milk and melted butter. Do not over mix. Carefully stir in the berries.

Spoon batter evenly into muffin cups. Bake 25 - 35 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pan and let cool. Dust top with confectioner's sugar. Serve warm, if possible.