Pam Lolley

You are four simple ingredients (and some time) away from a crusty, yet tender, loaf of bread. With just bread flour, salt, yeast, and water you can make a bakery-style loaf right in your own kitchen. Didn’t plan ahead, and want to get started right away? All-purpose flour will work, but the beauty of bread flour (we love King Arthur Unbleached Bread Flour) is that its high gluten content will give the loaf extra structure. When measuring out the ingredients, a digital scale is the most accurate, but if that’s not an option just make sure to use dry measuring cups for the flour and a liquid measuring cup for the water. (Bread is easy; the hardest part is being diligent while measuring the ingredients.) Once you’ve got a well-combined mixture, be patient with the time it needs to rest. A nice, long rise in a warm spot is how the dough develops deep flavor. The second rise is much shorter—only 2 hours max. Then, it’s time to dust off the trusty Dutch oven, preheat it in a hot oven, and get that bread baking. “The pot acts as an oven within the oven, trapping the steam created by the dough,” says Jim Lahey, the founder of Sullivan Street Bakery in New York City, who helped popularize the no-knead method. How do you know when it’s ready? Tap the top of the loaf to test for doneness. According to Apollonia Poilâne, CEO and owner of the famed Poilâne bakery in Paris, it “should sound like knocking on a wooden door.” Do stick to that 1 hour of cooling time after it comes out of the oven for the loaf to complete its magic. You won’t regret it.
By Pam Lolley
As far as crusts go it must be stated that graham cracker is the most delicious kind. Here, you get the delicious taste without any of the work. In this icebox cake, a creamy orange-flavored filling is layered in between graham cracker sheets, and it’s all topped off with a pillow of fluffy whipped cream and artistic orange segments. The result is a show-stopping dessert worthy of a fancy dinner party. The cake’s vibe is retro in the best ways, so put on some throwback tunes and ask your guests to dress in their finest cocktail attire. Martinis and Old-Fashioneds are welcome.
By Pam Lolley
Think school bake sale meets your grown-up dreams and you’ll get an idea of what’s going on in these delicious squares. A gooey honey-peanut butter sauce coats a grab bag of the best flavors of childhood: graham crackers, oats, peanuts, and coconut, to name a few. The result is a decadent treat, perfect for an afternoon break or bringing on a hike. The generous serving of fiber thanks to oats, peanuts, and coconut mean that this snack can be filling and delicious—aka it tastes sweet with no sugar crash.
By Pam Lolley
Can we admit one thing? Adults love kid-friendly recipes as much (if not more) than kids do. And in the case of these juicy chicken tenders which are breaded with a mixture of crushed graham crackers and pretzels—there might just be a finger-licking showdown at the dinner table. All jokes aside, these crunchy tenders are a fun twist on a weeknight staple, and one that’s surprisingly easy to whip up. Serve with honey mustard and hot sauce for dipping. Psst…For extra easy clean up, line the rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil—it’ll catch any grease drips or stray crumbs.
By Pam Lolley
Salted caramel sauce might sound intimidating to make, but it’s as simple as combining five ingredients and melting, whisking, and stirring. In fact, maybe something so decadent as vanilla-infused caramel shouldn’t be quite so quick and easy! Thirty minutes is all it takes to stir up a generous batch of this gooey, salty-sweet treat. Our salted caramel sauce recipe makes six cups of caramel, which is enough for six to 12 holiday or hostess gifts, depending on the jar size you use. Win extra points by including a pint or two of ice cream and a tin of flaky sea salt to finish the sundaes off.
By Pam Lolley
This mushroom soup recipe is hearty and delicious, with toasted whole grain farro to add body and rosemary to add earthy aromas. Like any great recipe, there are many ways in which this soup builds flavor. First, by allowing enough time for the vegetables to brown, those caramelized bits can mix into the broth. Then, letting the farro toast in the pan with rosemary and vegetables before simmering adds a nutty undertone to the grains. Add a little white wine to balance and brighten the savory elements and you’ve got a wonderfully complex mushroom soup, which, by the way, is vegan! Shopping tip: Buying packages of pre-sliced wild mushrooms certainly cuts down on prep time, but if you don’t mind some extra chopping, the uncut kind can be less expensive.
By Pam Lolley
Goodbye nuggets, hello crispy tofu squares! This vegetarian take on a family-friendly classic is a fun way to introduce a new ingredient if you’re trying to get kids on board, and adults will love these, too. The method for making crispy tofu in a pan does involve some prep, but the resulting perfectly fried, golden brown squares is well worth the work. Draining the tofu slices through a combination of paper towels to soak up liquid and weighting with a skillet means that the cornstarch coating can adhere to the squares and fry nicely in the oil. Paired with a fresh and delicious cabbage-carrot slaw, your meal is both satisfying and healthy. Looking to get dinner on the table in a snap? Prepare the tofu as directed through the drying steps in advance, cover with paper towels, and leave in the fridge until ready to use.
By Pam Lolley
Cooking pork tenderloin in the oven is an easy, hands-off way to get juicy medallions of pork without a lot of prep or effort. Since tenderloin is a long, thin cut of meat, the cooking time is only about twenty minutes, meaning dinner is on the table quickly—and not to mention, all in one pan. In this recipe, the pork is roasted with apples and fennel, all of which gets a orange-scented, honey-mustard glaze. Thyme leaves in the glaze ensure that the flavors skew sophisticated rather than cloying. To ensure a golden-brown crust on the pork, you’ll start by roasting everything, and then crank it up to broil to seal the glaze in. Honeycrisp apples work well in this recipe because they hold their shape when baked. If you can’t find them at your market, Jonagold or Pink Lady apples will work well, too.
By Pam Lolley