Lucky New Years Day Black-Eyed Pea Salad
Good luck for the year if you eat black-eyed peas on New Year's Day!

Good luck for the year if you eat black-eyed peas on New Year's Day!

Every New Years Day for years now I've been making something with Black-Eyed Peas.  It's a Southern tradition that eating them on New Year's Day brings good luck for the year, and while I'm certainly not Southern I like fun food traditions so I've adopted this one as one of my own. Unfortunately, most of the recipes I've tried over the years have underwhelmed me.  They've either been too complicated for the end result, too unhealthy with loads of bacon, or just downright bland.  Until last year!  So since I've finally found a go-to Good Luck recipe I thought I would share:
Weekly Menu: December 28, 2014 – January 3, 2015
New Year's Eve Osso Buco

New Year's Eve Osso Buco

Sunday: Dinner at the 49ers v Cardinals Game at Levi Stadium
Monday: Dinner with a friend at Maven
Tuesday: Leftovers: Beef Barley Soup
Wednesday:   New Year's Eve! 
Thursday: Cioppino Boil at Montara Beach with a friend
Friday: Leftovers: Beef Barley Soup
Saturday: First party of 2015 at a friend's place!
One more week of crazy, busy holiday socializing ahead of us and I can't wait!  This last week has been perfect as far as holiday seasons go and instead of being exhausted by all of the activity as I often am, I'm feeling energized.  So bring on the last week of 2014 and let's ring in 2015 right! Of course, all of this socializing means I'm not much help in terms of a cooking dinner menu this week.  And the couple of days I do have to eat at home I'm pulling some beef barley soup I made over the weekend to use it up and save on groceries. It was a total impromptu, DIY recipe using things I had on chopped up beef that I marinated in an old bottle of red wine in the fridge, smashed garlic, black pepper and rosemary.  Then I dried it off, tossed it in some flour, salt and pepper, browned it and then deglazed the pan with a bit more red wine.  From there I simply added beef broth, cooked barley (that's been in the freezer forever!) and chopped up carrots, corn, peas, string beans, fingerling potatoes and spinach. Season to taste and there you go...easy breezy, delicious soup to use up some of those leftovers and feed you for days to come! Typically for New Year's Eve I cook one of my all time favorite meals, Osso Buco with Cheesy Polenta. But honestly I have a few options to consider for this year and while I'm not sure which one I'm doing just yet a dinner party doesn't appear to be in the cards.  While usually a girl of traditions like me would be sad about this, this year I'm embracing it.  Out with the old and in with the new!  You all know I've had a really tough year so I'm looking forward to 2015, a new me and new traditions to make this one of the best years yet.  Happy New Year safe, happy and healthy...and may 2015 ring in a year of fantastic cooking and eating for you and all of those you love! As always, if you need a few more recipes  visit my menu archives and recipes to find other meals to round out your week. Happy cooking...
Weekly Menu: December 21-27, 2014
Sunday: 60s Holiday Cocktail Party
Monday: Veggie Stir Fry 
Tuesday: Dinner and a Movie with a friend
Wednesday:   SavoryGirl's Christmas Eve Fondue Party!
Thursday: Late Christmas Brunch at Top of the Mark 
Friday: Leftovers: Veggie Stir Fry
Saturday: Dinner Date
The holidays are here! The holidays are here! Yeah, SavoryGirl loves the holidays. Even if this year is my first year doing the holidays on my own, can't take the cheer out of me! So while my weekly menu isn't all that helpful this week with all of the celebrating, partying and socializing the Christmas Eve Fondue Party is one to consider if you haven't decided what you're doing on Christmas Eve just yet.  Otherwise just trying to squeeze in some healthy veggies in between all of the indulgence when I do have a night to eat at home.  Happy Holidays everyone...I hope they're filled with love, happiness and, of course, fantastic food!

As always, if you need a few more recipes  visit my menu archives and recipes to find other meals to round out your week. Happy cooking...
Cookie Party 2014!
SavoryGirl's 2014 CookiesOne of my all-time favorite nights of the annual Cookie Party! I've been hosting a holiday cookie party for almost 15 years now. The idea originally came from my ex-husband's mother who always hosted a Cookie Party for her neighbors but over the years I've evolved it a bit and made it my own. The funny thing is, as my website name suggests, I'm more of a Savory than Sweet girl. So while I love the cookies and the energy that my guests put into one-upping their cookies from the year before what I really look forward to is the cheese and meat. This year my guests pressured me into a formal vote for the tastiest and most creative cookies...we've never done that before so it added a new competitive element that I'm sure will drive the cookies to even greater heights next year!

Here are some photo highlights from this year's party, starting with the photo collage above. SavoryGirl's 2014 cookies!  I always make 3-4 cookies for my party but typically 2 of them are old family traditional cookies.  This year, however, I decided out with the old and in with the new and mad all new cookies! So I made Chocolate Pistachio Thumbprints with Chocolate Ganache which I thought were a delicious combination of salty sweet and while they look fancy they're actually quite easy to make.  I also made Tahini Cookies rolled in black sesame seeds and demera sugar.  I was pretty excited about the idea of these but they underwhelmed me in texture although others seemed to like them.  Lastly I made Chai Spice Cookies which were divine...and they just happened to be gluten free too. These actually won the informal "tastiest cookie" award at the party so they're definitely a keeper.  Super easy and really delicious! Jacob & Chad's Salted Choc Chip, Birdnests & Icebox Cookies
Next up, Jacob and Chad's cookies...they had to go and match the host and bring 3 cookies!  Love it.  Jacob's Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies gave my Chai Spice Cookies a run for their money in the "tastiest cookie" contest.  Don't worry...I'm working on getting the recipe! They also brought along BirdNests which you see in the middle there. These were quite yummy but really decadent so after a bite or two I was done! Their third cookie was a classic, buttery icebox cookie.