The Best White Chicken Chili Recipe

This White Chicken Chili recipe is rich and creamy and comforting on a cold day. It tasts so good it’s like a warm hug. Enjoy!

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I love the Winter weather... the swirling snow with the fairy tale nights of calm stillness dusted in white are charming but they are also cold. Our Winter Comfort Food meal for the Winter Simply the Sweet Life Magazine is this amazing White Chicken Chili with a side of the tastiest Cheddar Cheese Cilantro Biscuits. They are perfect to warm you on a nippy winter evening.

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White Chicken Chili Recipe

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts cooked and cut into bite-size chunks

  • 3 - 16oz cans great northern white beans

  • 1 medium onion chopped

  • 2 cloves minced garlic

  • 1 can chicken broth

  • 1 can of diced tomatoes

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1 teaspoon oregano

  • 2 small cans green chilies- chopped

  • a few sliced jalapenos to add heat

  • 2 cup sour cream

  • 2 cup cream

  • 1 to 2 cups grated pepper jack cheese

Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces then saute in olive oil with onion and garlic. Add chicken broth, tomatoes, spices, beans, sour cream, cheese, green chilies, and jalapenos. Cook on low for about 30 minutes.

For Cheddar Cheese Cilantro Biscuits recipe see Simply the Sweet Life Magazine Winter 2010-11 Issue No.1Recipe by Catherine Atwater | photo by Season Atwater


Easy Microwave Caramel Recipe

This easy caramel recipe is perfect for caramel apples or to make as indviual caramel candies. It turns out perfectly soft and chewy. Since it’s made in the microwave you don’t have to watch it the entire time which helps make the perfect caramel.

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Originally posted Oct 2007 my very first blog post!

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Fall food means caramel recipes. Our simple caramel recipe is made in the microwave. It's very easy to make. No candy thermometer is needed. The caramel can be used to dip apples, pears or other autumn fruits. It can also be rolled into soft caramels. Add nuts for the nut lover.

How to Make Caramel

Follow these easy steps for a successful batch of caramel!

Easy Microwave Caramels

  • 1 cup butter

  • 2 1/2 cup dark brown sugar

  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk

  • 1 cup light corn syrup

  • dash of salt

  • 1 tsp vanilla

Mix all ingredients in a microwavable bowl. Microwave 2 minutes and stir. Continue to microwave for 12-15 minutes stirring every 2 minutes. Caution, the caramel will be very hot! Have a bowl for ice water on hand in case of a burn. Add vanilla & nuts (if desired) to fully cooked caramel. Vanilla will make the caramel mixture boil up. For caramel apples dip apples straight in caramel rotating to cover the entire apple or pear. Then dip bottoms of caramel apples in chopped nuts, crushed cinnamon graham crackers or whatever suits your fancy! For caramel candies pour hot caramel in butter 9X13 pan and cool completely. Cut into pieces and wrap in wax paper squares.

Sweet & Simple Tips:

- Chill your apples to help prevent the caramel from running off your apples

- Use hot pads when you handle the bowl it will be hot!

- Cut squares of vellum paper or wax paper squares to place under your finished Caramel Apples

- Cut wax paper squares to wrap your caramels

- Sprinkle some Fluer De Sel Salt on Caramel Pears/Apples for added flavor




Caramel Apple Nachos

These Caramel Apple Nachos are just like regular Caramel Apples without the struggle of figuring out how to cut and eat your apple after it’s been dipped in caramel plus they are easier to make than traditional caramel apples! These Caramel Apple Slices perfect for a party treat too. Give them a try. I know you will love them!

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We wanted to serve Caramel Apples this weekend for a get-together but wanted something that was easier to eat and something everyone could eat in bite-size pieces. We decided to take our caramel recipe we make every year and came up with our Turtle Caramel Apples, nacho style. It's such a delicious and easy treat to have at a party or just to eat while watching your favorite fall movie.

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Turtle Caramel Apple Nachos

  • 8-10 of your favorite apples

  • 12 ounces of milk chocolate

  • 12 ounces of white chocolate

  • 1 pint of soft caramel

  • 1/2 cup of chopped fresh pecans

  • Juice of 1/2 lemon

Core apples. Slice apples. Toss in lemon juice. Arrange apples on a serving dish. Set aside. Chop pecans. Make one batch of caramel. Melt milk chocolate in a glass bowl in the microwave for 30 seconds then stir. Continue every 30 seconds until completely melted. Melt white chocolate the same as milk chocolate.  Drizzle hot caramel over apples. Drizzle melted milk chocolate over apples. Drizzle white chocolate over apples. Top off by sprinkling pecans over the top. Serve. 

Does chocolate go with Apple?

Does chocalate go with apple? I say absoultly especially if you are adding caramel into the mix.

Happy Fall!

Click here for my Easy Microwave Caramel Recipe




Best Banana Nut Bread Recipe - Better than Starbucks!


With our delicious family recipe I will show you how to make banana bread that will become your favorite banana bread recipe of all time! It’s better than Starbucks!


My recipe for banana bread is perfectly moistI and rich. It uses brown sugar and butter for an almost bananas foster caramelly flavor. I have loved Banana Bread since I was a little kid. I remember when I was about 6 to my mom surprise eating an entire loft of it all by myself. This recipe is an adaptation of the one my mom has made for the past 30 years.

This recipe is from my grandma Bohman. We've been making it now for four generations!

This banana bread is perfect for breakfast or an afternoon treat with a cup of coffee or tea. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

Sweet Tips:

How ripe should bananas be for banana bread?

For the most flavorful banana bread use banana that are just becoming overly ripe. The banana peel will have brown spots and will be starting to become thinner and a bit dehydrated. This is when you know they are perfect and ready for your banana bread recipe!

What can I add to Banana Bread?

You can add a few things to make your banana bread a little extra special. Try adding walnut, pecans, sliced almonds, coconut or chocolate chips! They would all be a delicous addition to your banana bread load.

Best Banana Bread Recipe

makes 1 loaf

  • 3 very ripe bananas

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 cup brown sugar

  • 1/2 cup softened butter

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

How do you bake a banana loaf?

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl add bananas, butter, and brown sugar. Cream together. Add eggs, baking soda and nuts. Mix until blended. Slowly mix in flour. Do not over mix.

Fold a piece of parchment paper and place in loaf pan. Pour mixture into pan. For a little something extra special sprinkle top with chopped nut and granulated white sugar. This gives a nice presentation and a lovely streusel like crunch to the top of the bread.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes until toothpick test comes out clean.

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Our Perfect HomeStyle Cinnamon French Toast Recipe

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The Story Behind The Recipe:
Cinnamon French Toast

When I first started thinking about the FIRESIDE FOODIE theme - telling the stories of the food that made us, this recipe for HomeStyle Cinnamon French Toast was the essence of the perfected tried and true recipe that everyone in our family loves. It has been on the table every Saturday morning since my twins were old enough to eat it. It’s buttery and cinnamony and hearty. It is one of the recipes that made my kids. It’s a true comfort food.

“I firmly believe in making a recipe your own so it sings to your tastes. “

Now this my french toast recipe which is a little bit different from my mom’s but it was built on her recipe. I firmly believe in making a recipe your own so it sings to your tastes. My recipe includes a ton of cinnamon and splash of vanilla. My kid’s dad grew up with french toast that was made with salt and black pepper. I know. Pepper! But it’s surprisingly good that way too.

French Toast Toppings

We ALWAYS top it with pure Vermont maple syrup since we have friends and family who are maple producers in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont. My sister and her family contribute to the Butternut Mountain Farm’s maple syrup which you can find at William Sonoma around the country. We are lucky enough to get some from them and our other friends who tap the most remote trees in Vermont for the cleanest purest natural organic maple syrup.

We usually top our french toast with fruit in season such as blueberries, strawberries, peaches etc and sometimes even a dollop of whipped cream too!

Here’s to another lovely late Saturday breakfast/brunch together as a family.

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P.S. How do you make french toast? I would love to hear about it. Either comment below or comment on the Fireside.Foodie instagram post!

HomeStyle Cinnamon French Toast

by April Atwater | Fireside Foodie

HomeStyle Cinnamon French Toast


  • 8 slices of homestyle bread
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup cream
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • butter


  1. In a mixing bowl wisk together eggs, cream, salt cinnamon and vanilla
  2. Heat griddle on medium low heat and melt 2-3 tablespoons of butter.
  3. Dip bread slices into egg mixture then place on griddle.
  4. Cook until golden brown on each side.

Yield: 4 Servings

Prep Time: 00 hrs. 05 mins.

Cook time: 00 hrs. 10 mins.

Total time: 15 mins.


  • Calories: 300
  • Fat: 14g
  • Totalcarbs: 32g
  • Dietaryfiber: 4g
  • Protein: 10g

Tags: french toast, brunch, breakfast, recipes

National S'mores Day Recipes and Ideas

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Today is National S'mores Day. For national S'mores Day why not host a S'mores party with a S' mores bar. Our Raspberry Nutella and Chocolate S'more is so delicious and simple to make. Add it to the bar along with other toppings for your guests to choose from.

Nutella S'mores Recipe

  • Original marshmallows

  • Homemade or the best raspberry jam

  • Hersey's chocolate bars

  • Nutella hazelnut spread

  • Graham crackers

First, toast your marshmallow to the perfect melting point. See our directions here: The Perfect toasted marshmallow. Next spread Nutella, and raspberry jam on a square of graham cracker. Next place chocolate square on the top. Finally, add the perfectly warm toasted marshmallow. Top with a second square of graham cracker and press together. Enjoy!

Sweet Tip:

Be sure to have your cracker ready for the marshmallow so you can place the marshmallow on top while it is still hot so your chocolate will melt for the perfect S'mores.

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The Spa at Spruce Peak Stowe Vermont

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I love a good spa treatment and Spruce Peak (formerly Stowe Mountain Lodge) in Stowe has an amazing spa. From the incredible views from the relaxation room to the unique treatment options to the quality services, it's one of those spa's you don't want to miss out on when visiting the area. 

Most people think of Stowe, Vermont and think if either the stunning fall maple leaves or they think of skiing but I love Vermont year-round. Each season has something lovely to offer. One of the hidden secrets of Stowe, Vermont are the amazing spas. Stowe Mountain Resort has one of the best in the US. Let me give a little peek into what the spa looks like and my favorite treatment to get while you are visiting. 

My favorite treatment at the spa is their Rejuvenating Leg & Foot Ritual. I never knew spending 25 mins having your calves and feet worked could feel so amazing. The treatment is designed for relief after a long day of skiing but skier or just a snow bunny with your hot cocoa in hand this treatment will change your life forever and possibly ruin you for any other foot massage.

A couple of my favorite must try treatments include the Oxygen Facial and the Stowe Cider Uber Scrub.

Visit Spa at Spruce Peak in Stowe next time you are up that way. You will not be disappointed.

You Will Love This Easy Lemon Pound Cake Recipe

Low Carb-Keto, Gluten Free, Sugar Free Friendly Recipe

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I loved ordering a tall hot drink and a slice of the Lemon Pound Cake at Starbucks but since needing to go gluten-free and keto I have been missing it. This low carb keto Lemon Pound Cake is the perfect treat for my Starbucks Lemon Bread cravings. It’s a super moist


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Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl combine sweetener, butter, cream cheese. and eggs. Cream together. Add vanilla, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, and baking powder mix until combined. Then add almond flour. Grease a loaf pan. I use this coconut oil spray. Add batter to pan and bake for 35 min and test. The side will slightly pull away for the pan when done.

Once cooled mix together ingredients for glaze and drizzle over the top of your cake.

It’s such a delicious moist lemon cake!

Lemon Pound Cake Recipe

Fireside Foodie

Lemon Pound Cake Recipe


  • 1/2 cup of softened butter
  • 6 oz cream cheese
  • 2/3 cup of sweetener (I use Swerve. I like the taste best for baking)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of fresh lemon juice (about 1 large lemon)
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 2 cups of almond flour ( this is the almond flour I use)
  • 1 1/2 tsp of baking powder
  • a pinch of salt ( I use pink salt in all my baking and cooking)


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl combine sweetener, butter, cream cheese. and eggs. Cream together. Add vanilla, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, and baking powder mix until combined. Then add almond flour. Grease a loaf pan. I use this coconut oil spray. Add batter to pan and bake for 35 min and test. The side will slightly pull away for the pan when done. Once cooled mix together ingredients for glaze and drizzle over the top of your cake. It’s such a delicious moist lemon cake!

Yield: 1 loaf

Prep Time: 00 hrs. 10 mins.

Cook time: 30 mins.

Total time: 40 mins.


  • Calories: Calories 152
  • Fat: 13.2g
  • Totalcarbs: 1.75

Pound Cake Glaze

Fireside Foodie


  • 1 cup of powdered sweetener (I use the powdered Swerve)
  • 1/4 cup of heavy cream
  • 1 tbs of fresh lemon juice


  • Once cooled mix together ingredients for glaze and drizzle over the top of your cake.

Yield: 1

Prep Time: 00 hrs. 05 mins.

Total time: 5 mins.


  • Calories: 207
  • Fat: 22
  • Totalcarbs: 0

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Fresh Grilled Pineapple & Strawberries with Maple Syrup

Vermont Inspired Recipes

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This delicious recipe is naturally gluten-free. It's perfect for everyone at your next BBQ. My mom loves grilled pineapple. I love the way the grill brings out the sweetness of the fruit and caramelizes the fruit sugars while still keeping a little bit of the tanginess. Serving grilled fruit kabobs for dessert while dining Al fresco is perfect. Drizzle some real pure Vermont maple syrup over the top and its heaven. Great for a light dessert. For a warm summer evening, another way to serve the fresh grilled pineapple and strawberries is to serve it over a vanilla bean ice cream then drizzle the maple syrup over the top for a fresh grilled fruit ice cream sundae. YUM

P.S.I use Butternut Mountain Farm pure Vermont Maple Syrup because my sister's sugar bush in northern Vermont contributes to their maple syrups. I know many of the maple producers in the area that contribute Butternut Mountain Farm and have visited Butternut Mountain in Johnson, VT. I know I am getting the best quality maple syrup from them. Their syrup comes from some of the most pristine mountains filled with wild beautiful sugar maple trees. I've walked the mountains. My kids have helped tap the trees where this syrup comes from and have helped stoke the fire on a chilly March evening in the wood-fired evaporator. 

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How to Grill Pineapple and Strawberries

  • 1 fresh ripe pineapple

  • 1 pint of fresh strawberries

  • 1 pint of real Vermont maple syrup- I use Butternut Mountain Farms grade A dark robust

Cut pineapple into large bite-size chunks. Remove stems from strawberries. Alternate strawberries and pineapple on skewers. This gives a nice contrast for the presentation. 

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The Best Potato Salad Recipe


Summer Salads Series

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My grandpa Bohman was born on the 4th of July. Every year the family would gather together from all over the country for a big birthday party and family reunion for grandpa's birthday at the Bohman farm. Ou reunions would include some of our favorite family recipes. We have a big family. I'm the oldest of 8 and my grandparents had 8 kids too. We are scattered from Vermont to Texas to Florida to Utah. It seems like everyone made it back for grandpa's birthday. One thing the Bohman's know how to do is cook. All of them. We had classics like baked beans, homemade chocolate cake, 3 bean salad and of course potato salad. Our classic potato salad recipe was always on the table. It will rival the best out there and is hands down better than anything you will get from the deli. We never had any leftovers. It's simple and delicious. Grandma Bohman cooked to taste and rarely used a recipe. This is my measured version that comes as close and you can to grandma's recipe.

KETO TIP: If you’re keto like me replace the potatoes with cauliflower for a low carb potato salad!

Best Potato Salad Recipe

  • 3 pounds of russet potatoes 

  • 6 boiled eggs

  • 1 medium onion

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise

  • 1/4 cup pickle juice brine

  • 3 medium dill pickles

  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard

  • salt & pepper to taste

Cube potatoes and boil until cooked. Cool. Chop eggs into chunks. Dice onions and pickles. In a small bowl mix together mayonnaise, mustard and pickle juice to make a dressing. In a large serving bowl add potatoes, eggs, onion, pickles, and dressing and stir. Serve chilled. 

Sweet & Simple Tip: To add a little kick to your potato salad add some chopped pickled jalapenos. 


This Easy Pie Crust Recipe Turns Out Perfect Every Time!


This Easy Pie Crust Recipe Turns Out Perfect Every Time!

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Easy Pie Crust Recipe

makes 2 bottom crusts or 1 bottom and 1 top crust

  • 1 1/2 cup of unbleached all purpose flour

  • 1/2 cup of room temperature butter

  • 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt

  • 2 tablespoons of cold water

In a food processor add all ingredients. Pulse on and off until blended and small pebbles of dough is formed. This can also be done with your hands.

Press dough together with hands. Forming a ball. Divide in two. Form into two balls; careful not to work the dough too much.

Place dough on a piece of parchment or wax paper tossing some flour over the top. Roll into a circle large enough to cover the pie pan; about 9-10 inches in diameter.

Place pie pan over the dough circle centering it. Flip the pie crust and plan over to put the crust into the pan. Press into pan. Using your fingers pinch the edge of crust to make a decorative pattern. 

With a fork prick holes to allow pie crust to vent while baking. Chill in freezer for 20 minutes then use as instructed in pie recipe.


Maple Sugar Cinnamon Rolls


Vermont Inspired Recipes

Maple Sugar Cinnamon Rolls

for rolls

  • 2 tablespoons yeast

  • 4 tablespoons sugar

  • 1/2 cup of warm water

  • 3/4 cup of warm whole milk

  • 1 teaspoon of sea salt

  • 1/2 melted butter

  • 1 egg

  • 3 1/2-4 cups of unbleached flour

for filling

  • 2 tablespoons of cinnamon 

for frosting glaze

  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • 1/2 cup of butter

  • 1/2 cup pure Vermont Maple Syrup - we use Butternut Mountain Farm

Using stand mixer add yeast, water, milk salt and sugar to mixing bowl. Mix slightly and allow the yeast to grow. 2-5 minutes.

Add melted butter and egg. Mix together. Using the dough hook add 1 cup of flour and mix. Allow to sponge up the flour for 5 minutes. Then slowly add one cup of flour at a time mixing until incorporated. Continue to kneed the dough on low for about 5 minutes.  The trick with dough is to make sure you don't use too much flour. The dough will be smooth but not too sticky and not too dry.

Spray a baking sheet and place dough into middle of pan then place in oven for 45 minutes to rise and double in size.

More Vermont Posts


Greek Yogurt Peanut Butter Cup Pie Recipe

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Post sponsored by Greek Gods Yogurt 

It's officially the beginning of the Holiday Season and Thanksgiving is coming up soon which also means it's PIE Season. Hooray for the Pumpkin Pie! and the Chocolate Pie and the Berry Pie and the Apple Pie and the Banana Cream Pie and the Peanut Butter Cup Pie and all the pies.

Our Peanut Butter Cup Pie filling is made of 4 simple ingredients and starts with thick rich cream and Greek Gods Greek Yogurt layered on top of a chocolate truffle bottom inside a dark chocolate cookie crust. It's so creamy and delicious you might find yourself wanting to eat it all. This pie will go fast so be sure to make a few to share. 

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Peanut Butter Cup Pie

Makes 1 Pie

For the filling:

  • 1 cup of heavy cream

  • 1 cup of Greek Gods Plain Greek Yogurt

  • 1/2 cup of creamy peanut butter

  • 1 cup of powdered sugar

  • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract

For the truffle layer:

  • 1 cup of heavy cream

  • 3 oz dark chocolate

For the crust:

  • 2 cups of chocolate sandwich cookie crumbs - about 12 cookies

  • 1/2 cup of real butter- softened

More Pie Recipes


Maple Milk

Vermont Inspired Recipes

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Not so much a recipe as a mix in idea, Maple Milk is a family tradition with my kids and my sister's families in Vermont. It's comfort food at it's best.

Did I tell you my sister and her family live on a mountain in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont. They make the most amazing pure Vermont Maple Syrup. A while back my brother-in-law along with his dad and brother decided to put up a sugar house in the middle of a Vermont winter. If you know Vermont winters you know this is quite the fête. They wanted to get it up in time for maple sugaring season which is early Spring.

They collect the sap from some the most pristine woods full of old sugar maples. The area is so remote it is clean and free from water, soil and air pollutants. They stay up all night when the sap is running feeding the wood fired evaporator stove. The results is gallons and gallons of pure liquid maple gold.

Delicious Harvest Apple Pie

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Our destination for FALL this year is Vermont. Vermont is one of my very most favorite places on earth. Fall in Vermont means stunning colorful autumn leaves of the sugar maples, the smell of sweet wood burning in the fireplaces, harvest dances at the local town halls, harvest full moon walks, plaid flannel, men letting their beards grow out in anticipation of hard cold winters, crisp fresh apples, apple cider, apple cider doughnuts, and a delicious harvest apple pie. When I lived in Vermont it felt like I was living in a movie. Everything you do in the small towns of Vermont is special unlike anywhere else in the world. Schedule a trip to Vermont and spend at least a week exploring the winding Green Mountain roads, little villages (yes they are called villages in Vermont), visit the local general/grocery stores, take a hike or swim in one of the many swimming holes of the fresh rivers. If you are there in the fall don't miss having a sip of fresh apple cider and an apple cider doughnut. Yes, it really does look like the beginning of Newhart even now in 2015 thirty years later and it's just as enchanting as the song Henry Mancini wrote for the show. Go ahead and listen. You will imagine yourself driving from small town to small town peeping at the rainbow of colors that cover the mountains this time of year.

I love this recipe for apple pie because it's a mix of both a pie crust and the taste of an apple crisp blended together in this delicious pie.  I use locally grown apples which always taste best and are freshest. I was blessed this year to have a wonderful heirloom apple tree that is a remnant of the apple orchards that use to cover the small town of Orem, Utah.

Did you know? Many of the variety of apples were lost during prohibition because they didn't want people to make hard apple cider so the trees were cut down. So sad but if you are lucky and in Vermont and find a wild apple tree along the side of the road go and forage for some of these tasty old varieties that have long since disappeared from all most everywhere. You never know it could be along one of the roads (Hazen's Notch Road) President George Washington sent the troops up to Vermont to build during the revolutionary war.

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Harvest Apple Pie Recipe

makes one pie

Pie Filling

  • 12 fresh apples

  • 1 cup of sugar

  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger powder

  • pinch of sea salt

Peel and slice apples in about 1/2 inch slices. In a large mixing bowl add sugar and spices and mix. Toss apples in sugar-spice mix. Set aside.

One Pie Crust Recipe

Pie Crumble Topping

  • 1 cup of sugar

  • 1/2 cup of unbleached flour

  • 1/2 cup of fresh cream butter

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt

With a fork or your hands blend together ingredients until the mixture forms small pebbles. Set aside.

Add pie crust to 9-inch pie pan. Be sure to prick small holes in the bottom of the unbaked pie crust with a fork. Add apple filling to the pan. Top with pie crumble topping. 

For the star fall decorative topping I tool a small cookie/pastry cutter added stars around the edge of the pie crust then made the star fall pattern starting at one side overlapping the stars then slowly spacing them further and further apart to get the star fall effect. This would also be pretty with a tiny maple left cookie/pastry cutter to make a windblown leaf decoration.

Place pie pan on a parchment lined cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. The pie will be bubbling hot so use caution when taking out of the oven.

Sweet Tip: Let pie set up for a least 20 minutes before serving.

More Vermont Posts


Maple Sugar Walnut Blondies Recipe


Vermont Inspired Recipes

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When we visited Vermont for Camp Gathering-Vermont this past April we visited just at the end of the maple sugaring season.  A lot of people think of fall in Vermont and they think maple syrup but the maple sugaring season is in the very early spring when the days are warming up but it's still below freezing at night. This is when the sap flows.

To the warm flavor of real Vermont syrup still evokes a feeling of fall. My Maple Sugar Blondies are made up of the warm fall flavors including walnuts and the caramel flavor of a blondie. I use Butternut Mountain Farm's real Vermont Maple Sugar AND pure Vermont Maple Syrup in this recipe too. If you can't find it in your local store you can order it online on their website- Butternut Mountain Farm

We visited Butternut Mountain Farm in Johnson, Vermont and I assure it is some of the purest finest maple syrup you will buy.


Maple Sugar Walnut Blondies

  • 1/2 cup of butter 

  • 1 1/2 cup pure maple sugar

  • 1/2 cup of grade A dark robust pure maple syrup

  • 3 eggs

  • 1 teaspoon real vanilla extract

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

  • 2 cups unbleached flour

  • 1 cup white chocolate chips

  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Melt butter. Add eggs, maple sugar, maple syrup, vanilla, baking soda, salt and nuts.

Stir by hand, Then mix in flour. Pour into 9x13 inch greased cake pan. sprinkle white

chocolate chips on top. Bake for about 20-25 minutes until golden brown and pulling

away from the pan on the sides. Cut and serve. I like to sprinkle a little bit of maple sugar over top and drizzle with a little bit of pure Vermont maple syrup right before serving.

Sweet Tip: Only mix by hand and be sure stir only to incorporate the ingredients and no more for best 

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More Vermont Posts


A New Electric SUV? SIgn Me Up! Rivian


Have you seen the RIVIAN SUV? Have you even heard of RIVIAN? Yes, it’s an auto maker and yes they are making some sexy all electric SUV’s and trucks!

As a designer myself, I am drawn to well design and good looking vehicles. RIVIAN has done an amazing job with the lines, shapes and colors of their R1T All-Electric Truck and the R1S All-Electric SUV. YES! ALL Electric!

For the typical SUV and truck buyer elevtric has not amounted to powerful in the past which kind of makes a eletric truck a bit of an oxymoron in concept. We will have to see what RIVAN has created here and see if it can stand up to the needs of the truck and SUV crowd. Here are the specs.

Rivian R1T All-Electric Truck Specs:

  • Range Up to 400+ miles

  • Acceleration 0-60 in 3 seconds

  • Payload 800kg

  • Towing Capacity 5,000 kg

Rivian R1S All-Electric SUV Specs:

  • Range Up to 400+ miles

  • Acceleration 0-60 in 3 seconds

  • Payload 800kg

  • Towing Capacity 3,500 kg

Look at that beautiful luxurious interior!

Look at that beautiful luxurious interior!

Ok, my long time followers know that when I test drive a vehicle one of the first things I look at is the gas mileage. That’s for several reasons. This all electric SUV has me so so hopeful that dreams do come true.

  • First, I hate paying the outragously high price for gas especailly when it hikes up during the summer adventure months.

  • Second, the less petrochemicals we use in our lives the better. Better for our health and better for our precous planet we have been given to care for.

  • Third, pumping gas is one of those chores I would rather not do.


The Rivian and are only available for pre-order at the moment. Prices start at $69,000 for the truck and $72,500 for the SUV which falls within the Range Rover price point with a $1,000 down payment required.

If you ask me I would rather spend my money on a good adventure vehicle like this than an oversized house! Downsize your house and upsize your adventurous side!

Go check it yourself here ;

RIVIAN R1S All-Electric SUV & RIVIAN R1T All-Electric Truck


The Best Broccoli Salad Recipe with Bacon!



Broccoli Salad is one of those favorite foods you see at potlucks, picnics and summer bbq’s. It’s great with grilled chicken or steak or even alone. It’s easy to put together and gets even better when you make it the night before and allow the flavorys to marinate together. It’s definatly one of our favorite family recipes we share at get-togethers.

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SWEET LIFE TIP: Rather than fry your bacon on the stove top place the bacon on a baking sheet and cook at 375 degrees until crisp.

(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)

Broccoli Salad Recipe

Simply the Sweet Life

Broccoli Salad Recipe

This recipe can be doubled or even tripled for a large group.


  • 4 cups broccoli
  • 1/2 medium size red onion
  • 1/4 cup raw sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup cooked bacon
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar - for low carb use natural sugar substitute such as erythritol
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup of shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries - optional


  1. Chop raw broccoli into bite size pieces.
  2. Cook bacon and allow to cool. The chop into small pieces
  3. Chop onion into small pieces.
  4. In a small bowl whisk together mayonaise, vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper for dressing.

Yield: 4 Servings

Prep Time: 00 hrs. 15 mins.

Total time: 15 mins.


  • Calories: 317
  • Fat: 26g
  • Totalcarbs: 17g
  • Dietaryfiber: 3g
  • Protein: 6g

Tags: Broccoli, Salad, Bacon, Recipe

My Mostly Natural Migraine Protocol


*I am in no way a doctor I am simply sharing what works for me. Please talk to your doctor and even get second and third opinions if you are suffering.

For me, migraines start very suddenly in my late 30’s. I literally didn’t know what was happening. My first migraine looked like a stroke. Half my face was numb, I was having a hard time talking and then came the kaleidoscope flashing lights and a blurry blind spot in my vision. Luckily my sister was nearby and she called my mom to tell her what was happening.

My mom calmly said I think you are having a migraine. Your aunt gets them.

I was never even much of a headache person up to that point so why did this suddenly happen to me? It took me 3 years of suffering, tons of major migraine drugs and days of suffering skull crushing mirgaines followed by my head pounding migraine hand over headaches before I figured out what was causing my migraines.

My migraines all started when I started drinking diet soda pop with artificial sweeteners and eating sugar-free treats with artificial sweeteners.

I had no idea that artifical sweeteners could do that to you! But for me I am very sensitive to them and haven’t eaten them before the migraines started so I had no idea. It took be 2 years after I stopped eating artifical sweeteners including aspartame and sucralose for them to completely leave my body and to stop having migraines!!

Robert H. Shmerling, MD Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing said in his article, Could artificial sweeteners be bad for your brain?, “ a study has raised the possibility that artificial sweeteners in diet beverages may increase the risk of dementia and stroke.” I am in no way surprised by these findings. I’ve had more than one CT scan that has shown progressive white matter damage from what they think is a result of my server migraines. I was also told my neurologist that because of my migraines I'm at a high risk of stroke.

Through trial research, I found a few things that are tried and true techniques to help minimize the pain and suffering during a migraine.

It’s my personal migraine protocol. I’ve only had one migraine in the past 2 years and the last one I had was very minimized and did not need heavy prescription medications to manage the pain.

Let call it my personal Sweet Life Migraine Protocal. It’s a mostly natural way I have found to help calm down a migraine.

This is what I do.


My *personal Sweet Life Migraine Mostly Natural Protocol

NOTE: I do these with the first onset of a migraine - when I start getting blurry vision even before the kaleidoscope lights.

  • I eat a 1/2 teaspoon of salt - pink salt or another unrefined salt is best but if I don’t have immediate access to them I use table salt

  • I chug one 16 oz bottle of room temperature water - purified filtered water is best

  • I rub pure essential peppermint oil on my forehead, back of neck, ears, and bottom of my feet.

  • I get a hot pad and hold it at the bottom of my neck ( I have a sock filled with uncooked rice that I microwave for 2 minutes)

  • I take 600 mg of IBuprofen ( the non-natural part)

  • I alternate sipping on a caffeinated beverage and another 16 oz bottle of water until the water is gone.

I have used these things to help alleviate some if not most of the pain from excruciating migraine pain and averted the nausea and vomiting that has inevitably followed.

For those who suffer, I am so sorry. I have been there and I hope you find relief very soon xo -April