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September 29, 2009

Easy dinners from a suburban gal I know: Using your imagination, plus ingredients found at Trader Joe's or your own fridge

Even though I just polished off a plate of spaghetti, with a yummy mariana sauce, prepared by my husband, I'm getting hungry again, reading the recipes from this cool new blog, Simple Savvy Sassy. The recipes are created and have been taste-tested by a young suburban-raised woman who is now enjoying life, living in her studio in the City (San Francisco).

She loves cooking, and she likes to eat well, but she's not going to get too neurotic about it. She has a demanding job, so she doesn't have hours to agonize over a dish when she comes home from work or after a busy weekend, doing sports or seeing friends. She also wants to eat in a healthy way, with nourishing and flavorful ingredients.

Okay, full disclosure time: She's my niece, Lisa. She is a single working girl in her mid-20s, but her recipes, which I'm dying to try, could easily be adapted to the life of a married working mom (me!). Lisa has an enticing -looking recipe for sun-dried tomato and sausage pasta, which I know would go over well with a certain picky 11-year-old boy (her cousin). She also offers great advice on how you can buy those rotisserie chickens at the grocery store (and they don't always cost that much) and stretch them into several easy meals.

Lisa offers some more ambitious recipes, for mango-pineapple salsa for your home Taco Bar.. But I'd be willing to give it a go, because Lisa and her sister and her mom (my older sister) make some mean guacamole. Actually, Lisa credits her mother (my sister) for inspiring her love of cooking and experimentation. Her mother taught what was once called "Home Ec" at the middle and high school levels in East Bay public schools.

I can just say that going to my sister's house for any special occasion is always a treat, because she, Lisa, and my other niece--Lisa's sister--always dedicate the day to shopping and preparing a meal that always tastes wonderful.

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