about me

 

Jacquelyn Grandy - Marin mama cooksHi, and welcome to Marin Mama Cooks!  My name is Jacquelyn and I’m a single mom to 2 adorable kids, Zoe and Eli.

IMG_0570Do I think I’m an expert at cooking?  No way, I’m not a trained chef by any means, but just a mom who loves to cook healthy and delicious meals for her family. I love experimenting and trying new recipes and this is my venue to do just that. I try and find recipes that are fairly easy to make and replicate. Basically, if I can make something on this blog, then you can. 

Where do you get your recipes from and tell me a bit more about your blog?  Most of the recipes on my blog are from cookbooks, magazines, friends and other blogs.  There are some recipes that I have created on my own through trial and error, but most are adaptations from another source.  I only post recipes that my family and I love, as I want to pass on recipes that will hopefully become family favorites in your house. I want this to be your one stop blog, so I try and compile a bunch of family approved recipes ranging from salads, soups and sides to dinner and dessert. Basically if you have similar taste buds to my family and I, then you will like most of the recipes on this blog.  I would say that my cooking style is a cross between Ina Garten and Heidi Swanson.  I like a balance between comfort and healthy cooking.  Life is about balance, so I believe food should be as well.

Why the name Marin
Mama Cooks? Plain and simple, I live in Marin (which is 10 minutes north of San Francisco) and I am a mom that cooks. Perfect name, right?
I just hit my one year blog anniversary in October 2012.  You can check out my post here to see before and after shots, as well as learn a bit more about me.

roasted broccoliWhat’s up with all the photographs? I know for myself that I love seeing a photograph of a recipe before I attempt to make it (come on, you have to see the finished product, right?) and step-by-step instructions are a bonus. I decided then that I would include photographs and step-by-step instructions on my blog to make cooking easier for everyone. I want you to feel like I am right there cooking alongside you in your kitchen. All of my photographs are of real food that we’re actually going to eat.  When you make one of my recipes, your dish should look pretty similar to the one in my photograph.  

I like using real ingredients in my cooking. It may take a bit longer to prepare a meal, but if
you plan it out ahead of time then it’s a fairly easy task to accomplish. I
always prep my ingredients ahead of time so when the real cooking starts I have
everything on hand ready to go.What else am I interested in besides cooking and blogging?  I love to read, (historical fiction, classics, spiritual books as well as science fiction, yes I read and loved the Twilight series) hike, climb mountains, run in the woods, be in nature, mountain bike, spend the day with my feet in the sand on the beach, photograph, travel, clean (yes, sadly I love to clean) and just spend my time hanging out with family and friends.  I beleive we’re here to live life to the fullest and to connect and love one another, so I try and do things that connect me with people, nature and life.

This blog consists of family friendly meals, favorite desserts as well as “mommy” meals. There also might be a few random tips here and there. I hope you find some new favorite recipes from my blog that you can incorporate into your recipe box.  Feel free to email
me or leave a comment if you have a question or just want to say hi! 

Have fun and get cooking!

xoxo, Jackie

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Comments

  1. Anonymous says

    Hi, Jacquelyn. I found your blog last week and I absolutely love it! So many wonderful things to try! Finding you was an accident….I was in search for a kale salad recipe and you were spot on. It was awesome. Thanks! Best to you and family in 2013!

    • jackiegrandy says

      Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting. I’m so glad you stumbled across my blog and that the kale salad was exactly what you were looking for. As you can see, I’m a fan of kale! Let me know if you give anything else a try! xoxo, Jackie

  2. says

    So funny, I just found your blog looking for a kale recipe as well! Lacinato kale, to be exact. I have it growing in my garden. I planted it but had absolutely no idea what to do with it. I am going to try your salad recipe…Looking forward to going through your other recipes, looks like lots of great stuff! (BTW formerly from Marin, recently moved to Napa)

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Michelle! That’s hilarious that you discovered my blog twice today :) It was meant to be, right? I’m actually going to try and grow some lacinato kale myself this spring as well as some heirloom tomatoes. Wish me luck! I think you will love the lacinato kale salad. It’s so easy to whip together and uses basically pantry ingredients. My kids even love it, so that should tell you something. I also love the miso kale salad. I’m glad to hear you’re a local gal as well. I love Napa and when my kids are in college, John and I plan on moving further north to have some land! Thanks for stopping by and let me know how the kale salad turns out for you when you make it :) xoxo, Jackie

  3. CCAlex says

    Guess what? Just bought some Lacinato kale at my local grocery and did a search for recipes. I went to several sites and then found yours. Charming – love the photos! I will be trying your kale salad tonight & will let you know how my husband and I liked it!

  4. says

    I just have to tell you that the chickpea burgers ARE the BEST ever! I first discovered them I think in June and since the have made them at least a dozen times, always to high acclaim! you do a WONDErful blog/job. Just to mention I am a trained Cordon Bleu (London) cook.

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Sharleen! Thanks for stopping by and letting me know about the chickpea burgers. I’m SO HAPPY that you love that recipe. I’m also very impressed with your culinary background. You must have some pretty amazing recipes and tricks up your sleeve. Thanks for the sweet compliment about the blog as well. It’s a lot of work maintaining it and keeping it fresh so I love hearing peoples thoughts :) xoxo, Jackie

  5. Analise says

    Hi Jackie,

    My favorite aunt’s name is Jackie too, strangely, she too is a excellent cook. I’m just an average 19 year old girl who stumbled onto u blog one day when searching for a good chocolate chip cookie recipe, and i found that and so much more. I LOVE this blog, you’re a real person, making real (and delicious) meals, and the commentary is super helpful (not to mention adorable). Just wanna let you know that you have a fan forever.

    – Ana

    • jackiegrandy says

      Oh Ana you’re too sweet for words and I love that you’re 19 and so amazingly sweet. I have high hopes for my 12 year old now! I love to hear that you enjoy cooking. I think it’s such an important skill to have as you get older and eventually get a place of your own. To be able to cook a nutritious home cooked meal rather than eating out every night is such a great way to stay on budget as well as keep things pretty healthy.
      Thanks for all of your wonderful comments above. I really took your words to heart and they mean so much to me, so thanks again. I’m glad you enjoy reading the blog as well as making the recipes. It’s great feedback for me. Please make sure you stop by and say hi again! Have a wonderful week Ana! xoxo, Jackie

  6. Anonymous says

    Hi! I didn’t know you had a food blog!! Everything looks delicious! I strive to be a Minneapolis mom that cooks. Maybe when Grayson gets to be a little bit older…
    I will be trying several of your recipes; I love being able to see the step by step. Beautiful photos.
    I miss you and hope to see you this summer!
    xoxo
    juliana

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hey Juliana! Thanks for stopping by girl! I never thought to tell you about the blog, I figured Brandt or Jeanne would have told you. I started this blog a little over a year ago and it’s been such fun! I just started it as a fun little hobby, but it’s become such a huge part of my life. I LOVE cooking and experimenting with recipes, photographing food, writing, you name it. It’s a great creative outlet for me.
      I didn’t really start cooking until Zoe was 8 and actually started liking and eating food. I mean I cooked before, but it was really basic, kid friendly stuff. My kids have become such adventurous eaters since I started the blog, so it’s been a win win. I’m glad you like the step-by-step photos. I’ve been getting a lot of positive feedback on that recently and I love hearing that people like it, as it takes a lot of time to write and photograph each step. I can’t wait to hear what you try! Let me know if you have any questions on any of the recipes.
      We missed you last August when we came to MPLS, but we will be back again this summer, so lets try to coordinate it at a time when you will be there. Alex and Brandt are also talking about getting together for a family reunion in CO. Were in for that as well. Anyway, I’m writing a novel here. Thanks for stopping by Juliana. Love and miss you as well! xoxo, Jackie

  7. Anonymous says

    I love your site. You are beautiful and so is your family. You are a great help to moms out there who are just beginning to cook. God bless you and your precious family!

  8. Anonymous says

    I just read this section for the first time. You look stunning! I love your blog and so happy you are sharing your amazing talent for finding family friendly easy to do recipes with the world!
    xoxo,
    Carey

    • jackiegrandy says

      Oh Carey! I didn’t just see this comment till now! Thanks for the amazing compliment. You are one of the people that keeps me inspired to keep this blog going when I’m ready to throw in the towel. I love you for that! xoxo, Jackie

  9. Kristy Meghreblian says

    Hi, Jackie. I was directed to your blog from TasteSpotting and instantly recognized your picture. We went to college together! I was class of ’92 and I think you were the same year or 1 year behind me. Anyway, great blog! Food is my life, so I will be sure to check back frequently. Glad to see you are doing well, and keep up the great work!

    -Kristy

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Kristy! Wow, small world, right? Go RWC! Yes, I graduated in 92 as well as you. Anyway, I’m so glad that you found my site via TasteSpotting, and I do hope that you find some recipes on the blog to make. Make sure to say hi when and if you make something, as I would love to hear what you think! :) xoxo, Jackie

  10. Paul B says

    Love the recipes, and all the incredible photographs. You are San Francisco’s answer to Nigella Lawson ( I hope that came out as a compliment! ) but with that incredible freshness of the Bay Area produce. Very inspirational – thank you.

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Paul! Yes, that totally came out as a compliment, and thank you so much! I love Nigella :) I hope you find some recipes on the blog that inspire you, and if you end up making something, let me know how it turns out. Have a wonderful night! xoxo, Jackie

  11. paul broder says

    Great. Well I tried the Salsa tonight but because I was using Beef AND Refried Beans I added a chopped mild green pepper and a teaspoon of of fresh grated horseradish to give it a mild kick. THe girls, 11 and 13, didn’t complain about the heat as it dissipated very quickly. Thanks for the recipe.

    Paul

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Paul! Glad to hear that you made the salsa. I’m assuming you made the mango and avocado one. I like that you gave it a bit of a kick, but not too much for the girls. I may try and add a bit of jalapeño next time myself! I think the kids will like it as they are liking spicier things! Have a great night :)

  12. says

    Just discovered you and love your recipes and blog. Such fresh recipes that suit our vegetarian way of life. Thank u for all the time u must spend on this. Im in australia and it confirms again that we are all the same and wanting the same things and juggling family and work all the same way! Can’t wait to try these recipes! Cheers !

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Andrea! I’m so glad you discovered the blog. It’s not a complete vegeterian blog, but I do offer many vegeterian recipes, so I know you will find some that you love. My favorites are the chickpea burgers, the quinoa patties and quinoa cakes, and of course all of the kale salads and soups. I just met a great family from Australia at Disneyland and we were chatting away about food and life. Yes, we can live in different parts of the world, but still share the same tastes in food and managing a household! Have a wonderful day and thanks so much for taking the time to say hi! I can’t wait to hear what you whip up! xoxo, Jackie

  13. Sheila says

    Hi Andrea, I just found your blog, too, and when you mentioned Ina and Heidi in one sentence and that you love to cook for your family and read, well I knew I had to take a closer look! I look forward to trying some of your recipes. I have been cooking for my family for 24 years and it is always an adventure. We only have one kiddo still at home, but we still sit down for dinner together every night – just the three of us. We are always looking for new recipes to try. The kids all cook now, too, which just makes it more fun (when they are here). In fact, my middle child is at UC Berkeley where he has been known to cook on occasion for the entire fraternity. I taught him well! ha. Your site is lovely and I look forward to following it.

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Sheila! So glad that my about me page pulled you in and inspired you to check out the blog a bit more. I love that your family eats together every night. I really think it makes a difference and bonds a family to have that dinner-time routine. I also love that your kids learned to love cooking though you and it’s so cool that your son cooks for his fraternity on occasion. He’s going to make some woman happy down the road :) I hope that you find some recipes that your family likes. Let me know what you end up trying :) xoxo, Jackie

  14. vanessa Meza says

    Hello ; its me , that crazy lady that fell on her bike a week ago..hehehe I have been looking at your blog and Oh my heavens YOU ARE AMAZING AND SO GORGOUS .I love all your recipes cant wait to try them ALL, if I can LOLOL , I will try. You have a wonderful talent , cooking is not easy maybe bacause is not my thing …lol. You have a beautiful Family and thats Priceless.Thanks for sharing your meals , this helps a lot . See you on instagram cutie. Thanks for following Me:)

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hey Vanessa! At first I was asking myself and my hubby if we ran into a lady on the bike path that fell? We were both stumped and then I remembered Instagram. SO funny how you can get mixed up with where you know someone from. I’m so happy you made it to the blog and checked it out! My recipes are easy girl, seriously, I’m an everyday cook, not anything more than you, so if I can make any one of these recipes, than you can too! Please let me know what you make for yourself and the family! Thanks for amazingly sweet comment and I will see you on Instagram! ;) xoxo, Jackie

  15. says

    Hi,
    We’ve recently launched the website RecipesUS.com. It’s a search engine that aims to gather all the best recipes from US websites and blogs in one place. RecipesUS.com is part of the world’s second largest family of recipe sites, with sites in 37 countries and hundreds of thousands of visitors every week. We’ve noticed that you have a lot of great looking recipes on your blog that we would love to feature on our site. To read more about how it all works and to sign up with your blog, please visit: http://recipesus.com or send us an email on info@recipesus.com. We look forward to hearing from you!

    Kind regards,
    Senka

  16. Nicole says

    Hi! I just found your blog through a pin on Pinterest. I made the mango avocado salsa last night and was blown away by how delicious it was, especially considering it only took about 10 minutes to throw together! I’m looking forward to trying out more of your recipes. I live in San Francisco, it’s nice to see a food blogger from the Bay Area!

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Nicole! Thanks for stopping by to say hi. It’s always nice to hear from local peeps. I’m so glad you made and loved the mango avocado salsa. I have been making that up so much myself and I still never tire of it. I hope you find some other recipes to enjoy just as much! xoxo, Jackie :)

  17. Rashmi says

    Hi,

    Love your blog. I live in Thailand and was looking for thai style burger recipes and bumped into you. Was curious to see who this thai lady was ;) hahahha. Fantastic recipes. Keep up the great work. Good luck to you and your adorable family.

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Rashmi! So funny that you found my blog via searching thai style chicken burgers, only to get linked all the way out to a lady in California :) That’s the internet for you, it makes it seem like such a small world. Thanks for kind words and I hope you find some recipes that you enjoy from the blog. :) xoxo, Jackie

  18. Colleen says

    Hi fellow California girl!
    I was born in San Francisco, raised in San Jose and the Bay Area! (Unfortunately I left the Bay Area in 1966 and have lived in Arizona ever since… :(

    I also came across your blog accidentally but am hoping to bookmark it and then keep coming back! Are you on FB?

    Question… do you do Gluten-Free recipes at times? I hope so!

    I sincerely hope to catch up on previous entries soon!

    Colleen

  19. says

    i found you on instrgram…not sure how~but i’m glad i did! you cook like i do…so i can’t wait to be inspired! i read your bio on how you love to be outdoors and clean~i LOVE the outside, but getting me back inside to clean…lets just say i would rather clean the outside of the house! thanks for taking the time to operate this blog…i will be a new follower. thanks!

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Marnie! Thanks for your sweet comment and I’m so glad you found me on Instagram as well. I love Instagram! It’s my favorite social media outlet. It’s just so personal and fun. Great to hear that we have the same cooking style and love of the great outdoors! I can’t wait to hear what recipes you end up trying and thanks so much for following :) xoxo, Jackie

  20. says

    found your site tonight while googling overnight steel cut oats. going to do your recipe tonight, combined with alton browns in the morning. I love the results but 40 minutes to fix!.
    I lived in marin thru the 70’s. still the favorite place I’ve ever lived.
    i’ll be trying some more of your recipes.

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Clint! I’m so happy that you found my site! So wonderful that you lived in Marin as well. I was living in upstate NY during the 70’s, so we we’re on opposite coasts :) I hope you enjoyed the steel cut oats and that they were a time saver for you. I actually made a fresh batch myself last night to enjoy this morning. I have to check out Alton Brown’s recipe as well to see what you’re combining it with. Have a happy Saturday! xoxo, Jackie

  21. Lauren says

    Jacquelyn,
    I just love your blog! I find myself coming back for more recipes each week. I finally wanted to thank you after making your lemon chicken breasts and kale mashed potatoes last night and once again, my boyfriend and I just loved it! You’ve helped me fool him into thinking I’m a great cook, but I always give you the credit ;) Lauren from Chicago

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Lauren! Wow, you’re just the sweetest! I’m so happy you love the blog and that you’ve found some recipes on here that are boyfriend approved ;) We just had the kale mashies tonight for dinner with the parmesan crusted pork chops. Oh my goodness, it was such a great combination, much like the lemon chicken. We omitted the garlic in the mashies tonight and added some sautéed shallots, just because we were cooking them up anyway, and it was great! You’re a great cook because you’re the one cooking it, right? I’m doing the same as you, just following someones recipe, that’s how it all starts. So glad you’re inspired girl ! Thanks for stopping by and saying hi! Be sure to let me know what you make up next! xoxo, Jackie

  22. Debasis says

    Hello Jacquelyn !
    thanks for sharing so many good recipes here. These are much more informative and delicious.
    keep it up… !!
    ohh ! one more thing… u are very pretty. :)

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Star! Thanks so much for the super sweet comment! I’m so happy you stumbled on my blog :) I hope you liked the orange cranberry bread! xoxo, Jackie

  23. katie says

    Hi Jackie, I was looking for a israeli couscous salad recipe, and found your blog – it’s great, I’m going to try yours tonight. Still looking for a version with some fruit in it – so will have a look further on your blog!
    Thanks, K

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Katie! I don’t have an Israeli couscous salad with fruit in it, but great idea. I will have to look into that! I hope you like this verson. xoxo, Jackie

    • jackiegrandy says

      Thanks Jenni! I hope you love the broccoli lemon pasta. It’s one of our faves! Both the quinoa cakes and patties are both so good! :) xoxo, Jackie

  24. Kate says

    Hi Jackie,
    I stumbled across your blog via a Runs Like A Mother tweet:) I will be trying your pork tacos soon and the mango/avocado salsa that everyone keeps mentioning. My family lives in Indonesia so it will be fun to use mango in something besides my smoothies. I don’t usually comment on blog posts, etc, but I was so struck by the kind way you answer your readers. I think that is amazing and I wanted to tell you that. Have a great weekend! Kate

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Kate! Wow, you’re so sweet and I’m so happy that you decided to say hi! Wow, it’s so cool that you live in Indonesia :) I love that I have readers in all corners of the world. It truly makes the world seem smaller! Mangos are not in season right now where I live, so you’re lucky that you get to enjoy them now! I love that salasa as well as my avocado-tahini dip. I could just eat those both all day :) I hope you enjoy both recipes and thanks again for saying hi Kate! I truly enjoy hearing from readers! xoxo, Jackie

  25. Monica Taylor says

    I really love your blog and I too live in NorCal (Vacaville, CA) I LOVE that you enjoy Historical Fiction and thanks to my podcast addiction, I am obsessed with audble.com. Now I can “read ” on the go and often cook and listen.

    thanks for what you do.

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Monica! So nice to hear from another California neighbor! I’ve never heard of audble.com, but I will have to check it out. Let me know if you’ve read any great historical fiction books lately, I’m in a total book rut :) xoxo, Jackie

  26. Lena says

    Hi Jackie!
    I am a new mom of an adorable 3 month old. I stumbled across your website after googling how to cut kale, lol. I do not really cook and have little time to cook these days. Which recipes would you recommend that take little time to prepare and can become my regular go-to recipe to fix myself (and my hubby) a nutritious and tasty meal? Sorry, I don’t have time to go through all the recipes! Thanks and I hope this will become my one stop food blog in the future!

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Lena! I’m so happy you stopped by and that you’re excited to cook from the blog :) Ok, there are lots of easy recipes on here that take no time to make. I would recommend my lacinato kale salad, as that’s super easy to whip up and uses pantry ingredeints, plus it lasts for 3 days so you have 3 days worth of salad. You can also try my miso tofu caesar salad. That’s a meal and again lasts for a few days. Men really like the miso roasted tofu beleive it or not, even my kids like it.
      Spaghetti squash tacos are super yum and the only part that takes some time is roasting up the squash, which is easy! Any of my weeknight meals are easy to prepare. Just click on the link on the sidebar called weeknight dinners. Easy skillet chicken parm is super yum and takes 30 minutes and you will have 2 nights worth of meals. I also love the Paul McCartney’s refried bean tacos. I make those weekly! The green bean and shallot ravoili is wonderful as well as the pasta with kale and the broccoli lemon pasta. Those pastas I made a lot when the kids were little and I still make them to this day because they are easy and taste great. My cauliflower soup is super easy and only required 5 simple ingredients as well as my easy weeknight chicken soup. The chicken soup takes 30 minutes to make once you roast the chicken, which I always do ahead of time. You can roast and shred the chicken earlier that day while your baby is napping or while you’re just at home playing with your baby. I always serve up that soup with some popovers which are super easy to make. Anwyay, I hope those ideas help. If I can think of anymore I will comment again. Congrats on your 3 month old! Kids rock and they really show you what love is all about! Have a great week and let me know if you make anything! xoxo, Jackie

  27. Lena Lee says

    Hi Jackie!
    Wow, thanks so much for your reply and for all the suggestions! I really appreciate it! I’m so glad I found your blog. The idea of sifting through tons of recipes over the internet seems really time-consuming and overwhelming, so I’m glad I can just come to your blog to find delicious and easy meals to make. :) As I said, I don’t really cook much :/ but really want to start cooking more since I have a little one and want to provide delicious yummy meals for her in the future and our family. :) To someone that doesn’t really cook, it all seems very intimidating! But hopefully one day I will love it and not find it so scary anymore. I will let you know which recipes I try out this week! Thanks again!

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Lena! That’s why I started this blog. I wanted a one-stop place for people to go to. I figure I will sift through recipes and then pick my faves and put them on this site. This is pretty much the one-stop place for all of my friends, so they truly along with my readers keep me motivated to keep this blog going and to keepp trying new recipes. I never cooked much until my daughter started liking food and it was intimdating at first, but once I did it more often, it just got easier and easier. Don’t feel intimdated, just get in the kitchen and give it a try. I do the step-by-step photographs because I find that it makes it easier for me, even when I cook from my blog, I look at the photos and I’m the one who put them on there :) I can’t wait to hear what you end up trying girl! Best of luck :) xoxo, Jackie

  28. Lena Lee says

    Hi Jackie!
    So last week I showed my husband your blog and asked him to pick something so I could make it for dinner. He picked the deep dish pepperoni pizza. I’ve never made pizza before and was quite scared! We had a cast iron skillet but it had ridges on the bottom, but we just used it since we had nothing else. I sent my husband out to get pizza doe from Trader Joe’s and they ran out of the original kind, so he used another flavor that had herbs in it. Didn’t taste so good! Anyway, I had some trouble when smoothing out the dough – it started thinning out and getting holes in it. I got frustrated :/ and just bunched up the dough to cover the holes. The dough ended up being super thick in the end :/ but my husband said it still tasted good (he could tell I was being hard on myself). I wasn’t able to get the dough to stay on the side of the pan. How do you do that? My husband went out to buy a regular cast iron skillet and he tried to make the pizza again himself a few days ago. He had the same problem with getting the dough to stick to the sides. He also got crushed tomatoes instead of diced, and what a big difference in taste that made! A bit too sour for the both of us!… I also made the cauliflower soup – I should’ve read the recipe first because I didn’t know it required a blender or hand blender – I couldn’t find my hand blender so I had to find my blender which I’ve never opened or used yet! It became quite the process, but in the end I’m glad I made the soup because now I can use the blender. The soup was very good and tasty :) but next time I will use vegetable stock. (is stock and broth the same thing? Is it okay to use broth instead of stock?)… I used a chinese chicken broth that I had but my husband wasn’t a big fan of that. :/ Oh, and I forgot to put on the top of the blender so there was cauliflower soup going all over the place! I also put in all the soup to blend at one time, instead of doing it a little at the time… It was quite the scene!…. but yay, I actually attempted to try out a recipe from your blog. I will try to make the chicken soup next, as well as the other recipes you suggested. Will let you know how it goes! Thanks again, and thanks so much for this blog. It really will be my go-to blog in the future. :)

    • jackiegrandy says

      Wow Lena! You have been busy :) Ok, first off let’s talk skillet pizza. Yes, that pizza is tough to get the dough perfect on the sides. I do have to work with it a bit before I can get it up the sides and it doesn’t always look pretty, but I do get it there with some elbow grease. I try and make sure the dough is fresh as that makes a difference, and that it is at room temp so that it’s more pliable. I always take it out from the fridge and the plastic wrapper 20-30 minutes before I use it to get it to room temp. It just takes practice and patience and a good dough. Sometimes you get a batch of better dough than other times.
      Ok, the soup, I love it with chicken stock and it tastes good with the veggie stock, but not the same as chicken stock. I would recommend chicken stock over veggie broth or chicken broth, as stock has a richer and fuller flavor that you just can’t get with broth. You should be able to find cartons of stock in the same isle as where the chicken broth is. So, basically if a soup recipe calls for stock, use stock because you will have a richer soup.
      If I were you since you’re new to cooking, I would try and stick to the exact ingredients in the recipes. I know that when I started cooking, I did that because I didn’t have the confidence yet to know how to adapt ingredients and what substitutes would work for what. I can now feel confident with substitutions, but not for all recipes.
      I’m proud of you for trying both recipes :) The skillet pizzas can be difficult, so maybe stick to the roasted red pepper pizza or the asparagus and gruyere cheese pizza if you’re looking to make a pizza :) The skillet ones are amazing, but do take some labor and a good dough! Sometimes Trader Joe’s has great dough and other times, it’s just not good at all!
      xoxo,Jackie :)

  29. Sarah McCarty says

    Such a beautiful blog! All of your food is so fresh, the pictures fab, this all makes me want to rush to the kitchen, fast! We just harvested kale at a community garden in Berkeley & I love your ideas! I’m vegetarian & your food is perfect for our entire family! I also love it that we are both in the bay area & I can follow what is fresh & local. Thanks!!

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Sarah! Thank you SO much for your super sweet comment! You made me smile :) Oh, if you want kale recipes you came to the right blog, because I am kale obsessed! Try the lacinato kale salad, as well as the kale lemon pasta. My kids love both, and both are super simple to make! It’s always nice to hear from a local neighbor! Let me know what you end up making, as I would love to hear!

      xoxo, Jackie

  30. says

    Love your recipes and your photography as well. We used to live out in the little town of Marshall (north of Point Reyes). Reminds me of those times.

    Thanks!

    Casey

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Casey! I totally know Marshall and I love that area! Point Reyes is pretty spectacular! THanks so much for saying hi and I’m happy to hear that you love the recipes! :) xoxo, Jacquelyn

  31. Mary M. says

    Hi Jacquelyn! I’m so glad I stumbled upon your blog. There are so many awesome healthy recipes on here that I can’t wait to share with my family. I’ll be visiting often :)

  32. Angela says

    I just found your blog today when looking for a way to make celery juice without a juicer for home-cured beef brisket. Wow, I started clicking around, and I’ve been here for hours! I cook A LOT, and I can’t wait to make a variety of the things I’ve found. Yum!

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Angela! Welcome! I’m so happy that you stumbled on my little blog, and I can’t wait to hear what you end up making! xoxo, Jacquelyn :)

  33. Patti Wack says

    Sweet blog! I just came across it by accident, I’ve been browsing through your recipes :) As a single gal living alone I find it really hard to find interesting and easy meal ideas, I find it harder to add variety to my food diet as I always gravitate towards buying the same things at the grocery store (and therefore, get bored, and sometimes lose the will to make anything at all). Looking forward to trying some of the recipes on your blog!

    • jackiegrandy says

      Hi Patty! I’m so happy that you stumbled on my blog! Thanks so much for your super sweet comment. I’m a single mom these days and the nights that I don’t have the kids, I do find it hard to motivate to cook just for myself, but when I do, I feel so much better. I tend to make my kale salads a lot, as well as soups! If you want any recommendations as far as some of my favorite recipes, let me know! I can’t wait to hear what you try! Have a blissful weekend! xoxo, Jacquelyn

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