A Menu for Mom

This Mother’s Day, Give the Gift of a Homemade Dish

 Strawberry 1 a menu for mom This Mother’s Day, Give the Gift of a Homemade Dish

By Jennifer Bajsel

Strawberry Champagne Cupcakes

Servings: Approx. 16 cupcakes | Prep: 30 min. | Time: 20 min. | Total: 50 min.


1 lb. fresh strawberries, washed and hulled | ½ cup champagne | 2 cups cake flour | 1 ½ tsp. baking powder | ½ tsp. baking soda | ½ tsp. salt | ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature | 1 ½ cups granulated sugar | 2 egg whites, 1 whole egg | 2 tsp. vanilla extract | ¾ cup half & half  Frosting: 1 cup freeze-dried strawberries | 1 cup unsalted butter, softened | 2 ½ cups confectioners’ sugar | 2 oz. champagne


Preheat oven to 350°. Line two muffin tins. Puree fresh strawberries in a food processor until liquified. Combine strawberry puree with champagne in a small sauce pot. Heat over medium heat until reduced by half. Mix flour, baking powder & soda, and salt in a mixing bowl. Cream butter and sugar in a separate bowl or stand mixer. Add eggs to butter and sugar. Mix until well combined. Add the cooled strawberry puree and vanilla and mix until combined. Add the dry ingredients and half & half and mix until you have a smooth batter. Fill muffin cups about 2/3 way full. Bake in the oven for 18 to 20 minutes. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Process freeze-dried strawberries in a blender until powdery. Mix the strawberry powder with the confectioners’ sugar. Beat the butter and add strawberry sugar mix. Add champagne 1 Tbsp. at a time until a creamy frosting texture is achieved. Frost the cupcakes and garnish with fresh strawberries.

Tips & Tricks:

Use rosé champagne or a sweeter sparkling wine to remove tartness. Add a drop of red food coloring to the cake batter for a pink batter.

Cacio pepe 5 a menu for mom This Mother’s Day, Give the Gift of a Homemade Dish

Cacio e Pepe with Homemade Pasta

Servings: 4 | Prep: 1 hr. 20 min. | Cook: 15 min. | Total: 1 hr. 35 min.


1 ½ cup 00 flour | ¾ cup semolina | 5 eggs | Kosher salt |
1 Tbsp. black pepper, freshly cracked | 1 cup pecorino romano, shredded


Combine flour and a pinch of salt. Make a well with the flour. Put the eggs into the center. Whisk the eggs with a fork, drawing in the flour until well combined. Knead for 10 to 15 minutes until the dough is smooth. Form a ball and cover with a bowl. Let the dough rest for one hour. Take a piece of pasta dough about ¼ cup size. Pass the dough through the smooth side of the pasta machine on the widest setting and repeat. Move the setting to the next lower width and repeat the process. Do this until you have the thickness you like. Pass sheets of pasta through the roller for cutting (or hand-cut). Flour pasta to prevent sticking and set in nests. Bring a large sauce pot to boil. Add enough salt so that it tastes like the sea. Add fresh pasta. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes. While pasta is cooking, heat a large saucepan over medium heat. Add fresh, cracked black pepper. Add ½ cup of pasta water. Add cooked spaghetti and stir. Reduce heat to low and add shredded pecorino cheese. Stir constantly until creamy. Serve immediately.

Tips & Tricks:

If the dough is dry and crumbly, add a little water or an extra egg until it is pliable. If it is too wet, add 1 Tbsp. of “00” flour until it is manageable without sticking.

Salmon salad 1 a menu for mom This Mother’s Day, Give the Gift of a Homemade Dish

Salmon Salad with Herb Vinaigrette

Servings: 4 | Prep: 15 min. | Cook: 10 min. | Total: 25 min.


4 x 6 oz. salmon filets | 16 oz. baby spinach & spring mix | 8 oz. cherry tomato, sliced | 1 English cucumber, halved & sliced | 1 jicama, diced | 4 oz. pepitas | ½ red onion, sliced | 1 avocado Dressing: ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil | 1/8 cup white wine vinegar | 1 tsp. Dijon mustard | 1 Tbsp. dill, chopped | 1 Tbsp. oregano | 2 Tbsp. parsley | ¼ tsp. salt | ¼ tsp. pepper


Rinse & pat dry salmon filets. Season with salt & pepper and set aside. Slice tomatoes, cucumber, jicama & red onion. Combine sliced vegetables with salad greens in a large bowl. Heat a grill pan on medium-high heat. Coat pan with oil. Place salmon non-skin side down and cook for 4 minutes. Turn over and cook on the other side for 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from heat. Combine, in a separate container, the olive oil, vinegar, mustard, herbs and seasoning. Whisk until well combined. Add salad dressing to the salad mix, just enough to coat. Toss salad and place in serving bowls. Cut and slice an avocado. Top each salad with a salmon filet and avocado slices. Drizzle a little more dressing on top of the fish and serve.

Tips & Tricks:

Use a food processor or blender to emulsify salad dressing instead of whisking or shaking.

For more flavorful recipes, visit LivingMagazine.net/cuisine


About Our Chef
Jennifer Bajsel Headshot

Jennifer Basjel

Jennifer is a private chef in Dallas, TX, with a passion for home-cooked meals with a global influence. In addition to cooking, she hosts an Italian cooking show on national streaming television. To follow her, go to JenniferBajsel.com or find her on Instagram @jennifer_bajsel





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