• Rolling Up Our Sleeves with Barefoot Contessa

    We're an [extra]ordinary group of cookers and bakers with a love of all things Ina. We'll be blogging through the recipes in How Easy Is That? as a group posting about them on each Thursday of every month.
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    Musings: Popovers

    For this month’s second recipe, we’re tackling the Barefoot Contessa’s Popovers!

    Make them for breakfast. Snack on one with your afternoon tea. Or serve them with this month’s other recipe: Ina’s East Hampton Clam Chowder.

    We’ll be posting our popovers on Thursday, Oct. 28.

    So, have you baked popovers before? Will you be adding anything special, like pumpkin spices or herbs?

    October Recipes + a Giveaway!!

    In between a month’s hiatus from recipes and the start-up for blogging through How Easy Is That?, we’re going Ina-old school with recipes this month from Family Style and Parties!

    Oh and did I mention that we’re also doing a GIVEAWAY?! Yep, the folks at Random House have sent me a boxed set of three classic Contessa books: The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook, Barefoot Contessa Parties!, and Barefoot Contessa Family Style and ALL readers of Barefoot Bloggers are eligible to enter (so spread the word!). Here are the guidelines if you’d like to enter to win this boxed set:

    1.Connect with us via Twitter.  Come back here and post your Twitter name (@_____) in the comment section of this post.

    2. Do this by Sunday October 10th at 9pm Eastern.

    One winner will be randomly chosen and notified on Monday October 11th.

    And now, on to the recipes!


    Laura from Family Spice

    has chosen East Hampton Clam Chowder

    which can be found in Barefoot Contessa Family Style on page 28

    and should be posted on Thursday October 14th.


    I’ve chosen the 2nd recipe by default again since the originally chosen 2nd recipe for September was a repeat and I couldn’t wait for another recipe before posting this.  I thought it would be a great complement to the chowda!


    which can be found in Barefoot Contessa Parties! on page 189

    and should be posted on October 28th.


    Musings: Sour Cream Coffee Cake

    Since we’re honoring the lazy days of summer, you have all month to make and post Ina’s Sour Cream Coffee Cake.

    Will you be making it for a special occasion, like Father’s Day breakfast? Are you going to try to lighten up the recipe or change the flavor?


    June Recipe Choices + Some Small Changes

    My apologies for posting June’s recipes so incredibly late!  I realize this is the day before the 2nd Thursday of the month but I’ve decided to relax the posting requirements for the summer months (through September).  I’ve also decided to close membership to new members (as of today) for the summer months (also through September).  I’d like to get the blogroll back in order and I’m going to need some time to do this…time, which seems to be escaping me these days.  If you have any questions, please let me know.


    Gwenn of Cooking in Pajamas

    has chosen Sour Cream Coffee Cake

    which can be found in Barefoot Contessa Parties! on page 37

    and should be posted by Wednesday June 30th.


    Josie of Pink Parsley Catering

    has chosen Scalloped Tomatoes

    which should be posted by Wednesday June 30th.


    Musings: Grilled Herb Shrimp

    After all of the comfort food and cookies we’ve made, it’s time to try one of Ina’s lighter recipes: Grilled Herb Shrimp. We’ll start posting this one on Thursday, May 27.

    So, what do you think? Is this one a keeper?

    May Recipe Choices

    Happy 2nd Anniversary Barefoot Bloggers!!

    Thanks to each one of you who make this group as great as it is!!


    Kimberly from Indulge & Enjoy

    has chosen Spring Green Risotto

    which can be found in Back to Basics on page 147

    and should be posted on Thursday May 13th.


    Penny from Lake Lure Cottage Kitchen

    has chosen Grilled Herb Shrimp

    which can be found in Barefoot Contessa Parties! on page 138

    and should be posted on Thursday May 27th.


    Musings: Chicken Chili (A Week with the Barefoot Contessa BRC)

    So, how does Ina’s chicken chili stack up to others you’ve tasted? Were you tempted to make some changes of your own?

    BRC: A Week with the Barefoot Contessa

    I realize this BRC has been a long-time coming but I think you will be pleased.  Let me explain…

    In August 2008, I challenged myself to cook and post one Ina recipe everyday for a week.  I think I came pretty close to achieving my goal of posting everyday and wanted to repeat this idea this past summer by opening up the invitation to the BB group to join me.  Somehow the summer slipped away though and here we are in the second week of October…not that I really mind though because this season usually yields some of my favorite types of food so choosing these recipes wasn’t all that difficult.

    I’d love for you to join me in this challenge!  Please keep reading for the instructions and recipes…

    1. Choose any or all of the recipes listed below and post about them during the week of November 2 – 6.  You don’t have the make all of the recipes during that week, just post about them. (HINT: schedule your posts early if you are unable to write a post everyday).

    2. There is no set posting day for any of the recipes. The idea is to post one recipe each day (if you plan to make all 5 recipes) but feel free to post multiple recipes on one day if you want to.

    3. I want to do a round-up post here on the blog so after you’ve posted, please send me one photo from each of the recipes you’ve chosen to post about.  In this email, please include your first name, blog address, and the recipes for which you are sending me photos.

    4. If you’re not a member of Barefoot Bloggers but have been hanging around here debating whether or not you want to join, I encourage you to join us for this challenge as well!  I think this will give you a decent idea about what the group is like and will also give you the opportunity to participate in the Musings posts that will go along with each recipe. Consider it a “trial run.” 🙂


    A Week with the Barefoot Contessa Recipes

    Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars – Barefoot Contessa at Home, page 170

    Chicken Chili – Barefoot Contessa Parties!, page 232

    Caramelized Butternut Squash – The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook, page 151

    French String Beans – Barefoot in Paris, page 160

    Roasted Potato Leek Soup – Back to Basics, page 63


    Musings: Lemon Cake

    Time for this month’s Bonus Recipe – Ina’s Lemon Cake – which we’ll be posting Thursday, May 21. Any questions or comments? Let the discussion begin!

    May BRC

    Congrats go out this month to McKenzie of Kenzie’s Kitchen!  McKenzie has chosen Ina’s Lemon Cake which can be found in Barefoot Contessa Parties! on pages 104-105.  Please post your Lemon Cake post on Thursday May 21st. Talk about the perfect spring recipe!!

    Musings: Chinese Chicken Salad

    So, we’re kicking off April with McKenzie’s pick: Chinese Chicken Salad. Have you made this one before? Trying any substitutions? Any questions? The date for posting this one is Thursday, April 9.

    April Recipes

    Please excuse this post being a little late.  I’ve been sick in bed with a stomach flu since Monday…it’s been a long week!  Needless to say, I think you’ll all be very happy with April’s BB recipe choices – two very lovely choices to kick off the Spring!

    Be sure to check in again tomorrow for a housekeeping post and a couple of announcements.


    McKenzie of Kenzie’s Kitchen

    has chosen Chinese Chicken Salad

    which can be found in Barefoot Contessa Parties! on page 98

    and should be posted on Thursday, April 9th.


    Kathy of All Food Considered

    has chosen Croque Monsieur

    which can be found in Barefoot in Paris on page 48

    and should be posted on Thursday, April 23rd.


    BRC: November

    November presents us with not one fabulous BRC recipe but two fabulous BRC recipes!! The first of which comes to us from Deb of Kahakai Kitchen, November’s monthly BRC for referring the most people to the BB blog (say it with me now – YAY Deb!!!!). The second recipe comes to us from Lisa from Lime in the Coconut for winning the BRC Avatar contest. Because this is a busy month with the big Turkey Day coming up, please post both recipes on Thursday November 20th. Remember that these bonus recipes are both optional so don’t get overwhelmed trying to make 4 recipes this month if your time won’t permit it.


    Chive Risotto Cakes

    This recipe comes from Ina’s new cookbook, Back to Basics, which I’m sure many all of you will be happy start testing out. Deb informed me that the recipe isn’t online yet so she generously typed out the recipe for those of you without the book.

    Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics, page 174-175; Serves 6

    ” I used to have to wait until I made risotto in order to make risotto cakes from the leftovers. So I decided to do a recipe for risotto cakes that I make from scratch. Most of this can be assembled early in the day and then sautéed just before dinner. The yogurt, chives, and Italian Fontina give these a delicious creamy interior, and the panko gives them a wonderful crunchy crust.”

    Kosher salt
    1 cup uncooked Arborio rice
    ½ cup Greek yogurt
    2 extra-large eggs
    3 tablespoons minced fresh chives
    1 ½ cup cups grated Italian Fontina cheese (5 ounces)
    ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    ¾ cup panko (Japanese dried bread flakes)
    Good olive oil

    Bring a large (4 quart) pot of water to a boil and add ½ tablespoon salt and the Arborio rice. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes. The grains of rice will be quite soft. Drain the rice in a sieve and run under cold water until cool. Drain well.

    Meanwhile, whisk together the yogurt, eggs, chives, Fontina, 1 ¼ teaspoons salt, and the pepper in a medium bowl. Add the cooled rice and mix well. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight, until firm.

    When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 250 degrees.

    Spread the panko in a shallow dish. Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Form balls of the rice mixture using a standard (2 1/4 –inch) ice cream scoop or a large spoon. Pat the balls into patties 3 inches in diameter and ¾ inch thick. Place 4-6 patties in the panko, turning once to coat. Place the patties in the hot oil and cook, turning once, for about 3 minutes on each side until the risotto cakes are crisp and nicely browned. Place on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and keep warm in the oven for up to 30 minutes. Continue cooking in batches, adding oil as necessary, until all the cakes are fried. Serve hot.

    Note from Ina: “Panko, or Japanese bread flakes, have a crisper, lighter texture than regular bread crumbs.”


    Mini Orange Chocolate Chunk Cake

    from Barefoot Contessa Parties! page 206.

    Note that the recipe in the book is a double recipe of the one on the FN site and it calls for a 10 inch Bundt pan rather than individual baking molds. There are a couple of small differences between the two recipes which I will post in the Musings post.


    October Recipes

    FALL is officially here and with the change of season also comes a shift in the type of recipes we’ll be making over the next few months. The recipes for October are perfect ones to get you motivated for your cool-weather cooking. Enjoy!!!


    Butternut Squash Risotto

    as chosen by Rachel of Rachel Likes to Cook

    which can be found in Barefoot Contessa Family Style on page 86

    and should be posted on Thursday October 9th.


    Vegetable Pot Pie

    as chosen by Deb of Kahakai Kitchen

    which can be found in Barefoot Contessa Parties! on page 255

    and should be posted on Thursday October 23rd.


    August Recipes

    We’ve got some exciting new perfectly summer-like recipes coming at us this month!



    as chosen by Melissa of It’s Melissa’s Kitchen

    which can be found in Barefoot Contessa Parties! on page 102

    and should be posted on Thursday August 14th.


    Butterflied Chicken

    as chosen by Stefany of Proceed with Caution

    and should be posted on Thursday August 28th.