Recipe: Caramel Sauce

Caramel Sauce, Courtesy:
Caramel Sauce, Courtesy:

You might know The Hershey Company best for their decadent chocolate. But did you know that Milton Hershey’s first candy company was Lancaster Caramel Company?  While seeking a candy coating for his caramels, Hershey discovered wonderful chocolate. In 1900, he sold Lancaster Caramel Company to the American Caramel Company, and later went on to found The Hershey Company.

1 cup light-brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Pinch of salt


  1. Combine ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Cook, stirring, until thickened to desired consistency.

Food Mingle Blog Alternatives and Substitutions

  • The longer your heat the mixture, the darker (and thicker) the caramel will become.

Yield: enough for one cake

Source:, The Martha Stewart Show, April/May Spring 2006 and



Recipe: Catalina (Red) French Dressing

French Dressing, Courtesy:
Catalina (Red) French Dressing, Courtesy:

The name of this dressing differentiates it from the Yellow version, which uses mustard instead of ketchup. Catalina Dressing is also sweeter than standard French dressing, due to the addition of sugar.

1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup  ketchup
1 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. paprika
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
Coarse salt
1/3 cup olive oil




  1. In a small bowl, whisk together vinegar, ketchup, sugar, paprika, and Worcestershire; season with salt.
  2. Whisking constantly, add oil in a steady stream until incorporated.

Yield: 3/4 cup

Source:, Everyday Food, September, 2006, and


Recipe: Rich and Creamy Alfredo Sauce

Alfredo Sauce, Courtesy: Food Mingle Blog
Alfredo Sauce, Courtesy: Food Mingle Blog

This decadent sauce is often served over linguine in a dish called Linguini Alfredo.  It originated in Italy in 1914, as a result of Chef Alfredo Di Lelio’s attempts to satisfy his wife’s cravings while she was expecting their child.  Later, he served it in his restaurant, Alfredo ala Scofa. The rest, as they say, is history.

1 stick butter
1 cup heavy cream
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups freshly grated Parmesan
Pasta cooking water, as needed


  1. In a saucepan or skillet, warm the butter and cream.
  2. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Add the Parmesan slowly and stirring well until melted.
  4. Toss to combine, thinning with pasta water if necessary.

Food Mingle Blog Alternatives and Substitutions:

  • A little crushed garlic adds some depth, although it is not usually included in a classic Alfredo recipe.
Yield: 2 cups
Source:, courtesy: Ree Drummond, Show: The Pioneer Woman, Episode: Alex’s 16th Birthday, and

Recipe: Mustard and Herb Vinaigrette

Mustard and Herb Vinaigrette, Courtesy:
Mustard and Herb Vinaigrette, Courtesy:, Photo by Bryan Gardner

A vinaigrette is traditionally made by mixing oil with an acid, such as vinegar or lemon juice. With this recipe, we also add mixed herbs for an earthy taste.


1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
2 Tbsp. white-wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup chopped mixed herbs (ie:  tarragon, chives, and cilantro)
Salt and pepper





  1. Combine mustard, garlic, and vinegar.
  2. Slowly whisk in olive oil.
  3. Mix in herbs.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.

Food Mingle Blog Alternatives and Substitutions:

  • I don’t care for Dijon mustard, so I substituted brown mustard instead – it gave the vinaigrette a darker color and more earthy, spicy taste.  Hey, I would even use yellow mustard instead of Dijon, that’s how much I don’t like Dijon! Brown mustard has a higher concentration of the mustard seed, making it more spicy.  I know that you mustard purists out there won’t like that substitution – don’t email me 🙂

Source:, Martha Stewart Living, April 2016


Recipe: Romesco Sauce

Romesco Sauce Ingredients, Courtesy: www.beefitswhatsfor
Romesco Sauce, Courtesy: http://www.beefitswhatsfor

Romesco sauce is a nut and red-pepper based, flavorful sauce originating in Northeastern Spain.  It is often served with seafood, but can also be served with a variety of vegetables and proteins, including poultry, beef and lamb.

3/4 cups roasted red bell peppers
1/2 cup diced seeded tomatoes
1/3 cup sliced or slivered almonds
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons fresh orange juice
1/2 teaspoon salt




  1. Combine bell peppers, tomatoes, almonds, cilantro, oil, garlic, orange juice and salt in food processor or blender.
  2. Cover and pulse on and off until pureed.
  3. Garnish with cilantro sprigs, orange slices and almonds as desired.

Food Mingle Blog Alternative and Substitutions:

  • This sauce can be made up to one week ahead, stored in a sealed container in your refrigerator.

Yield: 1 1/2 cups