Fresh Berry

The lowdown on food, drink and cooking
from Southeast Michigan

Fresh Berry
16Jul
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June 26, 2018

Better Burgers, At Nino’s

While I love pizza, fried chicken, and a slab of BBQ ribs, nothing throughout the summer months beats a juicy, well-prepared burger on a toasted bun—one made right at home. Homemade burgers have their advantages. For one, you can prepare it EXACTLY the way you like it or flavor it to suit your   more...

June 5, 2018

My Fabulous Chocolate Brownie Recipe!

When it comes to chocolate, I have my personal favorites, least of which are the small, bite-sized confections known as “chocolates.” One thing that really irks me is biting into an unknown chocolate to discover its delicious exterior is hiding some disgusting filling that I just can’t seem to  more...

May 29, 2018

Feta Cheese, France to Greece

One of the many advantages of working around so many professionals at Nino’s is learning more about their specialties. This includes our butchers, who can bone out a chicken in seconds; our produce buyers, who know when everything is in season; our artisan bakers who create wheaten masterpieces an  more...

May 22, 2018

Burgers are on the Menu at Nino’s

Grilling season is marked by four popular holidays: Memorial Day, Father’s Day, 4th of July, and Labor Day. Many of us theme each of these holidays with one of the popular meat choices and build our menus from there. Others have no strategy at all and just grill everything from brats to chicken  more...

May 15, 2018

Foil Pouch Grilling Tips

One hundred and twenty-eight years ago, U.S. Patent number 400,666 was granted for an efficient and cost-effective way of producing aluminum (which was discovered only 65 years earlier) and paved the way for the aluminum foil that’s sitting in your cupboard right now. Before aluminum foil, ther  more...

May 8, 2018

1 Cheesecake Recipe, 5 Additional Variations!

Surely, I can’t be all that different from everyone else. Growing up, whatever exposure I had to cheesecake must not have been very good, because I wasn’t a big fan. Then, one day (when I was a mid-teen) I must have been starving, because I decided to eat a slice of Sara Lee cheesecake my mom b  more...

May 1, 2018

Michigan Asparagus

One of the events I look forward to each spring is seeing the first of Michigan’s local crops come into our produce departments at Nino’s. Among the very first is Michigan Asparagus, which, depending on our weather, you’ll see on our shelves as early as this week in May and (hopefully) throug  more...

April 17, 2018

Never Roasted a Leg of Lamb? Start Here.

When you’re “On the Lamb”, you’re definitely hiding from something. If YOU’RE “on the lamb” (from learning how to properly roast a leg of lamb that is…) then, it’s time to turn yourself in…because I’ve got some simple lamb roasting tips for what could surely become one of your  more...

April 3, 2018

Home Roasted Chickens, Best Practices for Best Outcomes

Of all my favorite comfort foods I can honestly say that my favorite is a simply roasted chicken. I say “simple,” but even simple has a “catch”. For example, it’s a simple decision to decide between going left or right. On the surface, it seems like a 50/50 proposition, but in reality,   more...

March 13, 2018

Lent Recipe Package

I know that it can sometimes be pretty challenging to come up with delicious meatless meals that your family will enjoy in this Lenten season. So from fish and shellfish to savory pasta and vegetable dishes, you can look forward to some of the new recipes during the Lenten season.   Y  more...

March 6, 2018

2018 Lenten Recipe Package #2

We’re nearly halfway through the 2018 Lenten season, and with many more meals to plan before Easter, it’s time for me to share with you some more of my delicious meatless recipes, this time focusing on a fish many of you may have enjoyed without knowing it. What fish is that, you may ask? Poll  more...

March 2, 2018

Fish & Chips? YES, Please!

For all I knew when I was a kid, if the box of frozen fish sticks said English Style Fish & Chips, it was the real deal. Not that it really mattered to me then; I just liked fish. And if the box had a picture of ANYTHING resembling French fries, so much the better. Those were desperate tim  more...

February 27, 2018

Bananas… A Bunch of “Good Stuff”…

I have this habit of buying more bananas than I can eat. Actually, I don’t feel too guilty about it because when the bananas get too ripe to enjoy eating out of hand, I just throw them in my freezer where they stay until I get in the mood to make some kind of dessert,...or banana bread. Well,   more...

February 16, 2018

Nino’s Lent Recipes

In this set of recipes, I’d like to turn you on to 3 different dishes, all of which feature a common theme. They’re ALL stuffed (as will you) because they’re ALL delicious! Even better, they’re easy to make. Let’s get started! Nino’s Seafood Department has some fabulous 8- to 10  more...

January 30, 2018

The 5 Healthiest Greens for Your Salads

Dressings aside, I think everyone can agree that salads are good for you. They provide lots of nutrition and lots of fiber, and they make some great-tasting meals. They’re also pretty much fat and sodium free. But, as you’re standing in the produce aisles at Nino’s looking at all the lea  more...

January 23, 2018

Healthy Turkey Burritos

With the exception of what might be called authentic American foods like roasts, some soups, and (of course) fast foods, Italian food is undoubtedly THE number-one ethnic cuisine in the United States. That’s if you can even call some Italian foods ethnic anymore. When you include pizza and i  more...

January 9, 2018

New Year’s Culinary Resolutions

I don’t think I’ve ever, ever made a New Year’s resolution. Not once. Or maybe it was that I once made a New Year’s resolution to never make New Year’s resolutions, and in that case, I suppose I once did. Once. So, it’s rather unprecedented that I even dare myself to make the commi  more...

January 4, 2018

Weight, Weight…Don’t Tell Me!

Perhaps you know your clothes have been fitting a bit tight lately, and maybe you’re slowly facing the sad truth that it’s probably not the fault of the washing machine, the dryer or the dry cleaner like you’ve been hoping. Truth be known, you may have also secretly been saying to yourself   more...

January 2, 2018

10 Tips to Slim Down “Fatty” Recipes

We’re all creatures of habit they say. They also say people are very reluctant to change their eating habits. Then it would seem to follow that if what they say is true, and your diet isn’t very healthy, you have little chance of getting out of that rut. “The only difference between a r  more...

December 26, 2017

Lobster & Crab Cooking Tips

Holidays are a time to splurge! Not only with presents and parties but with sweet treats and savory indulgences we just can’t resist treating ourselves to. Cookies and pastries are certainly on that list, and for dinner, maybe a juicy Roast Prime Rib, Rack of Lamb, or Honey-Glazed Ham. But i  more...

December 19, 2017

Fabulous French Toast Casserole for the Holidays

As a chef, no matter how wonderful your menu reads, how great the food is or how glowing the press might be, you always get suggestions from your customers of something they’d like to see on the menu or a dish you’ve just GOT to try. Such is the story behind my recipe for Pain Perdu. While  more...

December 5, 2017

Treat Your Guests to Homemade Bar Snacks This Holiday Season

Okay, I’m a chef, but that doesn’t necessarily mean there wasn’t a time when I occasionally got stuck for an idea on what to serve my guests when they’d stop by Chez Loren for an impromptu visit. The truth is it’s MUCH easier for me to plan a 6-course meal than it is to decide just what I  more...

November 21, 2017

Leftover Tip: Turkey Dinners To Go

Figuring out what to do with your Thanksgiving dinner leftovers isn’t usually a big problem unless you’ve really overestimated your crowd. From tomorrow’s sandwiches to soups and just plain old second helpings days later, it’s likely you’ll find a home for just about every morsel of foo  more...

November 14, 2017

Alternative Stuffing Recipes

I’ve often blogged about Thanksgiving, covering everything from appetizers to desserts. I’m not alone. It’s a season and a holiday where there is NO shortage of chefs with recipes and tips. Whether you want to know what the Pilgrims ate at the first Thanksgiving or what the Kardashians are   more...

November 9, 2017

Crock Pot Holiday Appetizers

When you think of making a Crock Pot © / slow cooker appetizer for the holiday, the usual default is some kind of meatball in sauce. And while Sweet n’ Sour, Barbecue or Swedish Meatballs are great, there are so many other delicious recipes and ideas that are also perfectly suited for a slow cook  more...

October 31, 2017

Turkey Timeline: Your Thanksgiving Dinner Planner

As the years go by, more and more I rely on my tried-and-true recipes, notes, and traditional routines that have paid off in the past. Thanksgiving, and especially planning for Thanksgiving dinner, is one of those times when I rely on my planner so I don’t forget a thing. It’s especially help  more...

October 26, 2017

Halloween Treats

Many of us remember Halloween not so much for the decorations, the pumpkins, the donuts, or the cider as much for the ritual of “trick or treating”, in costume, throughout the neighborhood on a leaf blown, moonlit night. Actually, Trick or Treating goes back a way. And not just in our own cou  more...

October 12, 2017

Caramel Apples: Just like the Good Ole Days

Back in the real Halloween trick or treat days, people actually used to make popcorn balls and caramel apples as treats. Sadly, those days are mostly gone, as people nowadays find it quite a trick to find the time to make this traditional fall treat. Having said that, it’s something I’d really  more...

September 26, 2017

Muffin Tin Meals

No, I haven’t lost my mind. At least not yet. I also haven’t disavowed my expert training at the Culinary Institute of America or forgotten all the hours I’ve slaved behind the stove in fine-dining restaurants over the years. Actually, all of that has put me in the perfect position to u  more...

September 19, 2017

Celebrate Oktoberfest with Homemade Soft Bavarian Pretzels!

When two of my greatest foods combine into one, it’s nirvana. It’s been no secret of mine that I love bread—all kinds of bread. And when it comes to snacks, I’ll pass on the potato chips and head for the pretzel snacks—all kinds, all shapes. I love pretzels as much as I love bread.   more...

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