Olive Tapenade

Carbs… carbs are one of my biggest weaknesses. Especially little crostini’s… you can literally put anything on them & they will be delicious. Toast them, don’t, either way… yum!

Girl time is special to me. My closest girlfriends, are, ironically, 3000 miles away from me at any given time. Living across the country from the people you love most, really makes you appreciate the time you have with them. My sister was able to sneak away from her job as a labor & delivery nurse in Connecticut for a few days to come out & visit with us. Spending time with her is always so much fun. Isn’t it funny how the person you grow up arguing & fighting with ends up being your best friend as you get older?



Anyway, one of our favorite things to do is a little wine tasting. She loves going in Connecticut but the green hills of New England are definitely a totally different view than what we have in the desserts of Southern California. Especially after three years of little to no rain. Our golden hills are definitely a sight you don’t see in Connecticut’s vineyards.

New England wineries generally create some form of blends of local grapes &, from what I understand from many of the wineries I’ve been to, grapes that have been shipped in from warmer climates like here in California.

Big, indoor, cottage like décor is what you usually can find on the east coast rather than the outdoor, Mediterranean feel you get out here at a vineyard.

It is definitely a different wine here on the west coast compared to cold New England.


What’s nice about going wine tasting with girlfriends is they enjoy the same snacks that I do, & everything Chris doesn’t like.

Usually when I go wine tasting Chris and our friend Patrick come, and they like…. Well pizza. And that’s it. My idea of a fun wine tasting day is veggie spreads, Italian meats & an amazing cheese to go with the wine. (Not a greasy slice of pepperoni.) This is an appetizer that I just recently discovered how to do on my own, and honestly, it’s way better than what you can get out of a jar.

Try it out… and enjoy!


3/4 cup black olives
1/4 cup Kalamata olives
2 garlic cloves
1/2 cup fresh grated Parmesan
4 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp olive oil
1.2 cup chopped parsley

1. Chop olives in food processor. Set aside.
2. Mince garlic and add cheese, butter, and oil. Process into a paste mixture.
3. In a large bowl mix olives with the paste mixture and fold in chopped parsley.
4. Place mixture on crostini and toast under broiler for 2-5 minutes at 375˚.

Taco Salad

The only thing missing from this recipe is my mom’s yellow Tupperware bowl. Growing up there were a few staple summer dishes my mom would make. They were in the fridge more often than not in case my friends or any of my brother or sisters friends stopped by. Taco salad was one of the essentials in our house and it was always in a big yellow bowl with a clear top.


It super simple to make and can feed a whole lot of people which is perfect for a house of teenagers who have friends stopping by all of the time. You can really alter it however you’d like. Basically if it goes in a taco, you can throw it in the salad.

This past weekend we had Chris’s dad and his younger siblings down to our house. We went to Disneyland one day and the next day everyone spent the day at the pool while I went to work. Since I knew I wouldn’t be able to cook for everyone I made my taco salad so they would have something to eat with their hamburgers and hot dogs. Chris just had to pull it out of the fridge, pour some extra dressing on top and bring it down to the pool area.

Signature IMG_0595

1 lb ground beef
1 package Taco mix
1 small red pepper
1 bag Cool Ranch Doritos
8 oz California French salad dressing
½ head iceberg lettuce
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese

1 cup olives, halved
1 small onion
1 small carrot, shredded

1.  Cook meet until browned, drain and remove from pan.
2.  Add Taco seasoning and add a splash of water to smooth together seasoning and meat. Add cheese and refrigerate.
3.  Chop veggies and set aside. Chop lettuce.
4.  Open bag of chips and crunch chips to bite size pieces.
5.  Mix veggies and chips into bowl with meat and cheese.
6.  Mix in salad dressing.
7.  Can refrigerate after serving for up to 5 days. Before serving left overs, add about a tablespoon of more dressing.

Stuffed Artichokes

During my four month hiatus I wasn’t only working on content for my new and improved Megan and Eggs. I also was catching up on some much needed R&R.

Back in March my mom came to stay with us for a long weekend. I was super excited! My shopping buddy was in town, my fellow wine taster, and my head chef!! Before she even got here we had a list of things we were going to make. The morning after she landed we headed to the grocery store to pick up some essentials.

When her eyes caught our massive California artichokes she had to get them. Now that I have been here for five years I have gotten used to eating steamed artichokes the west coast way… dipped in mayonnaise. But my health crazy mom couldn’t stop gagging when I suggested we have them dipped in the artery clogging spread. Instead she insisted we have them the Italian way… stuffed.

Since it was a few weeks before Easter I couldn’t help but agree. You see, every year for Easter I remember one of the things my grandmother would make was stuffed artichokes. In a huge family, that was a lot of artichokes!! But it had been so long even my mom had to remember how they were made, so we called my stepdad. They ended up coming out so good before she hoped on the plane back to JFK she picked up two more California artichokes to take home to Connecticut.

Hope you enjoy as much as we did!



2 large artichokes
2 cups Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1 garlic clove, chopped
3 button mushrooms
3 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper

1.  Rinse artichokes and cut off stem. Cut close to body of the vegetable allowing it to sit on it’s own. Set aside. Cut off the top of the artichoke and any of the remaining points on the leaves on the outside of the artichoke. Throw this away.
2.  Looking down on the artichoke push the leaves outward from the heart of the vegetable creating a small bowl in the middle. You want a 1.5-2 inch diameter to have enough room for stuffing. Set aside.
3.  Chop steam of artichoke and quickly sauté with garlic in 2 Tbsp olive oil and mushrooms. Combine bread crumbs, egg, and sautéed mixture together in large mixing bowl.
4.  Stuff mixture into center of artichoke. Using a small spoon will help push out the leaves to allow a big enough bowl in the center.
5.  Place into large sauce pan with about 1 inch of water along the bottom of the pan. Drizzle with 1 Tbsp of olive oil and cover. Bring the water to a boil and then lower to simmer.
6.  Allow to simmer for 45 minutes or until outer leaves are tender.
7.  Dip outer leaves in mayonayes or melted butter or eat plain.
**Can also add two bay or sage leaves into simmering water to add flavor to the outer leaves.

Jam and Brie Phyllo Bites

Phyllo is an amazing, flakey pastry used in Greek desserts. Because they are stretched so thin, they aren’t the easiest to make so it’s a great thing us lazy Americans can go to the store and buy them in the frozen food section. In the form of sheets or already shaped into cups these are great to have on hand to make a quick dessert or appetizer. Below is my favorite app my mom makes sure to have at any big family dinner she has. The warmed up cheese, topped with a sweet jam (apricot and raspberry are my favorite) and crispy shell, this is a wonderfully flavorful bite.

Jam and Brie Phyllo Bites
1 box Phyllo cups (15 cups/box)
1 wheel of Brie
Any flavored jelly or jam

1. Lay phyllo cups on parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Drop a ½ inch square of brie into each cup.
2. Bake at 350⁰ for 20 minutes or until the whitest part of cheese is melted completely.
3. As soon as melted take out of the oven and drop ½ teaspoon of jelly or jam onto each phyllo cup.
4. Serve immediately.