Lemon Garlic Yukon Gold Potatoes

Hey there strangers! I’ve missed you!

Right now I’m at my parents house in Ohio cuddled up in bed with my cats. I only have 2 more days left with them before I leave for China and I am going to love their faces off while I still can. It’s been a pretty traumatic couple of weeks for them so I think they’re appreciating this cuddling down time.

2 weeks ago Tiffany flew home with my sister. Then Biggie had to adjust to her being gone and I moved everything out of the apartment and she was really not happy about that. Then, 1 week ago Biggie flew home to Ohio with me. Once in Ohio I expected a beautiful reunion between the 2 of them but that just didn’t happen. Instead Biggie hissed at Tiff and Tiff sat there with a sad look on her face and it took 3 days for them to get back to normal. It didn’t help that there are 2 other cats in my parents house so tension is already high and they have basically been locked up in my room for the past week.

Wish there was a way I could explain all of this to them. I know they will get lots of love and attention at my parents house but it doesn’t make this process much easier. I’m sad, they’re sad, and there is just no way to tell them why it’s all happening. So while I can I am cuddling with them, playing with them, and, like I said, basically loving their faces off. 🙂

But today’s post isn’t just about cats. I also have a recipe to share today. (woohoo!) I made these potatoes a few weekends before the mass craziness of moving ensued. Lemon Garlic Potatoes are a great way to add variety to your menu by taking a break from your usual side dishes. They come together quickly, require minimal work, and I love the subtle but fresh flavor of the lemon. Plus, it’s nice that the ingredients are all things that I usually already have on hand. The baking time is a little longer than some side dishes, but since that time is basically hands off you can work on the main course or just sit back and watch and episode of FRIENDS.

Lemon Garlic Yukon Gold Potatoes

1-1/2 lbs Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into quarters
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp salt
Juice of one whole lemon
2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese, grated

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a medium baking dish, toss the potatoes with the melted butter, garlic, and salt, then drizzle with lemon juice. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake for 35 minutes. Remove the foil, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and bake for another 15 minutes, uncovered. When they start to turn golden brown and are fork tender, they are done.

Slightly adapted from Pennies on a Platter

Creamy Mustard Potato Salad

In most parts of the country I imagine summer cookouts are starting to slow down and football parties are starting to pick. The good news is this recipe will work for both.

I come from a very large family, so when we all get together we usually have foods that are easy to produce in mass quantities . Cold cut trays, sloppy joes, coleslaw, and potato salads were regulars at our parties. They might not be considered upscale, but they bring back loads of memories of fun times with my wild family. And I don’t know very many people that don’t enjoy an occasional creamy potato salad.

This recipe has a perfect balance of creaminess from the mayo (and Greek yogurt, I had to add) and tang from the mustard. It was great the day I made it and even better the next day after all of the flavors had time to work together. I was conservative with the chopped pickles because I didn’t want the pickle flavor to be too strong, but next time I’ll use the full amount and the recipe below reflects that.

Creamy Mustard Potato Salad
(Adapted from The Cooking Photographer)

6 medium-large potatoes, I used Yukon golds
2 hard boiled eggs, chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 Kosher Deli-style dill pickle, chopped fine (about 1/4 cup)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp dry dill leaf
1/4 tsp celery seed, rubbed between palms
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp dry mustard
Freshly cracked pepper, to taste
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup Greek yogurt
2 Tbsp prepared yellow mustard
2 to 3 Tbsp dill pickle juice from the jar

Peel, dice, and boil potatoes in unsalted water until tender, but not so soft they fall apart. When done, place in a cold water bath, until cool, then strain well. Mix all dry spices and liquid ingredients together in a small bowl.

Add potatoes, onion, egg, and pickles to a large bowl, and gently stir in the seasoning mixture until well mixed. Chill at least an hour before serving.

For a nice presentation, sprinkle with paprika and garnish with fresh parsley before serving.

Lemon Greek Chicken


I am a jet-lag fighter. I like to think that I can go from one time zone to another with out missing a wink. I fully expected to come back from China and need about a day or two to adjust and then be fine. HA! I think the fact that I fell asleep on the couch by 8 pm 4 out of 5 nights this week proves otherwise.

I was exhausted this week, which was a huge bummer because I had a lot of plans to jump right back into my kitchen and make dinner every night. The night I made lasagna was a huge personal accomplishment and utterly wore me out. To the point that the next night we just had sushi. By Thursday I needed something simple. This one-dish meal (well one dish and a measuring cup) was just what the doctor ordered.

Besides being fast and easy to throw together, this meal is light but filling at the same time. The lemon really brightens the potatoes and chicken. Jesse liked to take each bite and rub it into his lemon slice. Flavor wise this is the perfect summer meal and in San Diego, where there is a breeze and the temperature is in the mid-70’s, I don’t mind turning my oven to 400 degrees. But, if you’re in the part of the country that is over 100 degrees you may want to wait until it cools down a little!

Lemon Greek Chicken
(Adapted from The Pampered Chef Stoneware Inspirations)

2 lemons, divided
1/4 olive oil
4 large garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp dried oregano
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 lbs chicken breast (I used boneless, but it originally called for bone-in split breast)
8 small potatoes cut into fourths *
1 medium onion, cut into 1 inch wedges
1 medium bell pepper, cut into strips **
8 ounces whole mushrooms **

*I found a package of red, yukon gold, and purple potatoes at Trader Joes
**Your eyes are not playing tricks on you, there are no peppers or mushrooms in the picture. 15 minutes into roasting I realized I had forgotten to add these, but I’m including them in the ingredients because I know they will be great.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Zest then juice one lemon into a 2 cup measuring cup. Add oil, garlic, oregano, salt, and pepper to the cup and mix well. Slice the second lemon into thin slices

In a large oval baking dish, or a bar pan with at least 1 inch tall sides, lay out the onions, potatoes, peppers, mushrooms. Pour 1/2 of the lemon juice over the vegetables and use (clean) hands to evenly coat. Add the chicken and lemon slices to the dish and arrange so the vegetables are surrounding the chicken. Pour the remaining lemon juice mixture over the chicken and use a pastry brush to evenly coat. Cover the dish tightly with a lid or aluminum foil.

Bake for 30 minutes then remove the cover and bake for an additional 15-30 minutes, or until the juices of the chicken run clear and the potatoes are fork tender. Occasionally baste the chicken and vegetables with the pan juices.