Macaroni Monday

My friend Leslie was visiting a few weeks ago and she is a lover of all things cheese.  I knew I wanted to try another Mac & Cheese recipe while she was here.

This recipe is from Mac & Cheese – 80 Classic & Creative Versions of the Ultimate Comfort Food.

Substitutions made, noted below.

herbed mac 1

Herbed Mac and Cheese

1/2 lb. penne – I used rotini
4 oz Brie
3 oz Gruyere, grated
3 oz sharp white Cheddar, grated – I only had 2.5oz, so I used extra Gruyere
1/4 c unsalted butter, divided
2 tblsp all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary (sub 1/4 tps dried)
1/2 tsp chopped fresh sage (sub 1/4 tsp dried)
1/2 tsp chopped fresh thyme (sub a pinch dried)
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg – I used dried
2 c whole milk, warmed – I used 2% milk
salt & pepper to taste
3/4 c plain breadcrumbs – I used panko breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 13×9 baking pan. – I used an 8 inch baking dish, there was not enough to fill a 13×9.

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil over high heat.  Cook the pasta until it is just beginning to soften to the al dente stage.  Drain the pasta, run it under cold water, and return to the pot.

Scrape the white rind off the Brie, and chop it finely.  Combine the Brie with the Gruyere and Cheddar and set aside 1/2 c of the cheese mixture.

Heat 2 tblsp of the butter in a saucepan over med-low heat.  Stir in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute, or until the mixture turns slightly beige, is bubbly and appears to have grown in volume.  Stir in the rosemary, sage, thyme and nutmeg.  Increase the heat to medium, and slowly whisk in the warm milk.  Bring to a boil, whisking frequently.  Reduce heat to low, and simmer the sauce for 2 minutes.

herbed mac 2

Add the cheese to the sauce by 1/2 c measures, stirring until the cheese melts before making another addition.  Pour the sauce over the pasta and stir well.  Season to taste with the salt and pepper, and transfer to the prepared pan.

Heat the remaining butter in a small skillet over med heat.  Add the breadcrumb and cook for 2 minutes or until the crumbs are golden brown.  Combine the browned crumbs with the remaining cheese mixture, and sprinkle it over the top of the dish.

Bake the casserole for 20 to 30 minutes, or until the cheese sauce is bubbly and the crumbs on the top are deep brown.  Allow to sit for 5 minutes, then serve.

herbed mac 3

cartoon-strawberry-9 This was so good stuff.  I wanted the herbs to be a bit stronger, and I think they may have been if I had used fresh.  I’m already looking forward to the next Macaroni Monday!

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Chicken Minestrone

Who makes soup on a day when it hits 80 degrees?  That’d be me.

This recipe is from 400 Soups.

Substitutions made, noted below.

chix minestrone 1

Chicken Minestrone

1 tblsp olive oil
2 chicken thighs – I used 3 boneless
3 rindless streaky (fatty) bacon rashers (strips), chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
a few fresh basil leaves, shredded – I used dried
a few fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped – I used dried
1 tblsp chopped fresh flat leaf parsely – I used dried
2 potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch cubes – I used red potatoes
1 large carrot, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 small zucchini, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 or 2 celery sticks, cut into 1/2 cubes
4 c chicken stock
1 c small soup pasta
salt and ground black pepper
Parmesan cheese shavings, for serving – I used the Trader Joes Parm/Reggiano blend

Heat the oil in a large frying pan, (I used my 5 quart dutch oven for all soup preparation) add the chicken thighs and fry for about 5 minutes on each side.  Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add the bacon, onion and herbs to the pan and cook gently, stirring constantly for about 5 minutes.  Add the potatoes, carrot, zucchini and celery and cook for 5-7 minutes more.

Return the chicken thighs to the pan, add the stock and bring to a boil.  Cover and cook over a low heat for 35-40 minutes, stirring the soup occasionally to prevent sticking.

chix minestrone 2

Remove the chicken thighs with a slotted spoon and place them on a board.  Stir the peas and pasta into the soup and bring back to a boil.  Simmer, stirring, for 7-8 minutes or according to the instructions on the packet, until the pasta is just al dente.

Meanwhile, remove and discard the chicken skin, then remove the meat from the chicken bones and cut it into small pieces.  Since I used boneless, I only had to cut these into pieces.

Return the chicken meat to the soup, stir well and heat through.  Taste and add additional salt and pepper if necessary.

Ladle into warmed soup plates or bowls, top with cheese and serve pipping hot.

chix minestrone 3

cartoon-strawberry-9So this soup was good, but a little bland the first night.  But the second day?  Wowzers!  All the flavors had bloomed and deepened.  When I make this soup again, I will prepare it the day before, skim the fat and reheat for serving.  I would also add a fourth chicken thigh, just to add a little more meat.

Individual Gooey Butter Cakes

The first time I had Butter Cake was at a restaurant here in Nashville, I was splitting a piece with a friend.  We very politely fought over every last bite and both considered licking the bowl.  Maybe a year later I came across a recipe for Butter Cake on Pioneer Woman’s Tasty Kitchen Blog.  So far I’ve always halved the recipe, not wanting to over indulge in the deliciousness.

Then my darling friend Leslie had the best idea EVER, why not use a muffin pan and make individual cakes?

Here is the link to the original recipe – Gooey Butter Cake

butter cake 1

Individual Gooey Butter Cakes

Crust:
1 1/4 c flour
1 c sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 c milk
1/2 stick butter – melted
1/8 c beaten egg

Filling:
4 oz cream cheese
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 stick butter – melted
1 1/2 + 1/8 c confectioners sugar

butter cake 2

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Generously butter muffin cups.

Prepare crust first.  In a large bowl, combing all crust ingredients with a wooden spoon until moist.  Measure out 1/8 c of crust mixture into each muffin cup, press down evenly and set pan aside.

Prepare the filling.  With an electric mixer, beat cream cheese until fluffy.  Add eggs, vanilla and melted butter and continue to mix.  Add sugar 1/2 cup at a time until all sugar is mixed in.  Pour 1/8 c of filling over crust in each muffin cup.

Bake for 20 minutes until tops are slightly browned.  Cool 15 minutes before serving.  Use a small offset spatula to remove the cakes.

Serve with vanilla ice cream or fresh berries (or both!).

butter cake 3

Chicken Tortilla Soup

When I was a working girl, one of my favorite lunch spots was Hof’s Hut.  A bowl of steamy chicken tortilla soup, a cool crisp salad and a side of garlic bread – heaven.  When I started to cook on my own more, I created my own version of chicken tortilla soup.  It changes a bit each time I make it, seasonings, ingredients, crockpot or stove top.  But each time it’s hot and filling and good.

chicken tortilla

Chicken Tortilla Soup

14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
2 – 13 oz canned in water chicken breast pieces
4 oz can green chilies
15 oz can black beans – rinsed
1 cup corn – I like the fire roasted corn from Trader Joes
3/4 c to 1 cup chopped carrots
3/4 c to 1 cup chopped celery
3/4 c to 1 cup chopped onion
4 c low sodium chicken broth
2 to 3 c water (if needed)

All seasonings to taste:
salt – table or smoked sea salt (Trader Joes)
pepper
garlic
celery seed
onion powder
chili powder
cumin
few dashes of hot sauce
black pepper sauce (Trader Joes)
dried basil
South African smoke seasoning (Trader Joes)

Crock-Pot.  Combine tomatoes through onions in a 5 quart crock pot.  Pour in chicken broth and add water if needed to cover ingredients.  Season soup and turn on low setting for 5-6 hours.  Stir occasionally and taste to see if any further seasoning is needed.

Stove-Top.  Use a 5 quart dutch oven or heavy stock pot.  On medium to med-high heat, coat bottom of pot with olive oil.  Start with the onions and garlic, saute till the onions begin to turn clear.  Add carrots and celery, saute for another 2 minutes.  Add in corn and chicken, saute for another couple minutes, then add the tomatoes, chilies, beans and broth, using water if needed to cover ingredients.  Season your soup, and bring to a low simmer.  Turn heat to low and let sit until everything is heated through.

Serve with: Tortilla chips, shredded cheese, sour cream or black olives.

Chicken with Pepperoni-Marinara Sauce

How’d you meet your best friend?  Middle School?  High School?  Church?  A job?  My sweet bestie walked into my life at a time when I really needed a friend and hasn’t walked away since.  I’m so thankful to have her in my life.  It’s just really hard now that we live 2000+ miles away from each other.

But then she will come to visit me, or I’ll head home to California, and all is right with the world again.

And sometimes during these visits, we get to cook together.

This recipe is from Cooking Light, Jan/Feb 2012.

Substitution made, noted below.

chicken pepperoni 1

Chicken with Pepperoni-Marinara Sauce

Cooking Spray
1/2 tsp minced fresh garlic
16 slices pepperoni, coarsly chopped
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1 1/2 c low-sodium marinara sauce
2 tblsp chopped fresh basil
2 tsp olive oil
1 1/2 lbs chicken cutlets
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1 c shredded park-skim mozzarella cheese – We used my favorite parm-reggiano blend from Trader Joes

Preheat broiler to high.

Heat a saucepan over med-high heat.  Coat pan with cooking spray.  Add garlic and pepperoni; cook 2 minutes or until garlic begins to brown, stirring frequently.  Add oregano; cook 30 seconds.  Add marinara sauce; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.  Remove from heat; stir in basil.

Heat a large ovenproof skillet over med-high heat.  Add oil; swirl to coat.  Sprinkle chicken with pepper.  Add chicken to skillet; brown on both sides, approximately 5 minutes total.  Spoon sauce over chicken; sprinkle evenly with cheese.  Broil 2 minutes or until cheese melts.

chicken pepperoni 2

Grilled Zucchini

The zucchini was an easy addition to this dinner. Sliced 2 zucchini into 1/2 inch rounds, sprinkled with salt and Tuscan Sunset seasoning and cooked on a grill pan set to med-high heat.

cartoon-strawberry-9Easy, filling, GOOD dinner to share with friends.  And is there really anything better than sharing your kitchen with your best friend?  Come back to Tennessee soon.

bff 4 life

Crispy Pork Medallions

You know those days?  The days when you want to hit the reset button, or crawl back into bed until its over?  The days when nothing and everything is just awful.  I had one of those days recently.  Despite my day, I still wanted to get a good dinner on the table.  And the weirdest thing happened.  As I was prepping, measuring, cutting, the awful day just seemed to melt away.  I didn’t have to focus on my bad attitude or my disappointments, all I had to do was measure a half cup of bread crumbs.  Cooking saved my day.

This recipe is from Cooking Light, November 2011.

Substitutions noted below.

Crispy Pork Medallions 1

Crispy Pork Medallions

2 tblsp Dijon mustard
1 (1 lb) port tenderloin, trimmed and cut into 8 medallions
1/2 c panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1 tblsp chopped fresh thyme – I used dried
1 tblsp minced fresh parsley – I used dried
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
2 tblsp extra-virgin olive oil

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Rub mustard evenly over port medallions.  Combine panko, thyme, parsley, salt and pepper in a large bowl.  Dredge pork in panko mixture.  heat a large ovenproof skillet over med-high heat.  Add oil to pan; swirl to coat.  Add pork; saute 2 min or until golden brown.  Turn pork.  Place skillet in oven; bake at 450 for 8 minutes or until port reaches 145 degrees.  Let stand 3 minutes.

crispy pork medallions 3

cartoon-strawberry-9I didn’t cut my medallions evenly, so it took the bigger pieces a little longer to cook.  But husband and I both really enjoyed this recipe.  Tangy Dijon, crispy breadcrumbs, perfect combo.  This would also work well on chicken thighs or turkey cutlets.

Sullivan Street Bread

bread&wine_cover_artI can’t remember how I stumbled upon Shauna’s first book, Cold Tangerines, but after my first read through I was hooked.  A woman writing openly and honestly about her delights and struggles in life.  I read her heart.  I read her joys.  I read her tears.  And in doing so, I felt like her friend.

Bread & Wine is a celebration of gathering around the table with our friends and family.  Whether for an impromptu birthday party, non-traditional holiday celebrations, or just to share a favorite cookie with our best friend.  Shauna challenged me to think on why I want to have friends and family around my own table, and the atmosphere I give them to live in while in my home.

Bread & Wine will be released on April 9th, but is available for pre-order now at Amazon.com.

My friend Shane says the genius of Communion, of bread and wine, is that the bread is the food of the poor and wine the drink of the privileged, and that every time we see those two together, we are reminded of what we share instead of what divides us.

I believe the bead and wine is for all of us, for every person, and invitation to believe, a hand extended from divine to human.  I believe it’s to be torn and handled, gulped.  I believe we can practice the sacrament of Communion anywhere at all, that a forest clearing can become a church and any one of us a prestige as we bless the bread and the wine.

Holiness abounds, should we choose to look for it.  The whisper and drumbeat of God’s Spirit are all around us, should we choose to listen for them.  The building blocks of the most common meal – the bread and the wine – are reminders to us: “He’s here!  God is here, and He’s good.”  Every time we eat, every time we gather, every time the table is filled: He’s here.  He’s here and He is good.

– Shauna Niequist, Bread & Wine

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Sullivan Street Bread

Ingredients and instructions by Jim Lahey, owner of Sullivan Street Bakery.

I’ve been hearing about this recipe for years, but my fear of yeast has kept me away.  And then all at once, on a cool fall day, I plunged in, and I have to tell you, this is incredible bread, and incredibly easy.

A few notes, I used my beloved, batter, scratched Le Creuset dutch oven, and it works perfectly.  Also, every time I make it, I hope that this time it’s going to rise into a huge, puffy impressive sphere, and really, it never does.  Mine never doubles the way the recipe says it will.  this is nerve-racking every time, and then the bread is delicious every time.  Like life, right?  We freak out, generally for nothing.  That’s how this bread is.  It makes me nervous and makes me certain I’ve failed, and then it delights me with that crusty, crackling, gorgeous loaf.  Bread baking is an emotional roller coaster.  Hold on tight.

Also, I use cornmeal to dust it because I like the gritty yellowness, and I’m pretty generous with it, especially on the tea towel so it doesn’t get all sticky.

A few more things: the recipe instructs you to let the dough rest for 12 hours – feel free to leave it longer than that, but not shorter.  At our house, I bake it at 450 degrees for 45 minutes, and that’s perfect. You might find that 500 works better for you, or that in your oven you need the whole hour, but my recommendation is that you start with 450 and 45 minutes.

And then call me and yell and dance around your kitchen, because you have cracked the code, found the grail, unlocked the key: you have made bread. – Bread & Wine

sullivan street bread 1

Ingredients
3 cups all-purpse flour
1/4 tsp yeast
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 c water
Olive Oil (about 1 tblsp, for coating)
Extra flour, wheat bran or cornmeal (about 2 tblsp, for dusting)

Equipment
2 med mixing bowls
6 to 8 quart pot with lid (Pyrex glass, La Creuset cast iron or ceramic)
Wooden spoon
Plastic wrap
2 or 3 cotton dish towels (not terry cloth)

Mix all of the dry ingredients in a medium bowl.  Add water and incorporate with a wooden spoon or spatula for 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Lightly coat the inside of a second medium bowl with olive oil and place the dough in the bowl.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rest 12 hours at room temperature (approx. 65 to 72 degrees).

After 12 (or more) hours, remove the dough from the bowl and fold once or twice.  Let the dough rest 15 minutes in the bowl or on the work surface.

Next, shape the dough into a ball.  Generously coat a cotton towel with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal; place the dough seamside down on the towel and dust with flour.  Cover the dough with a cotton towel and let rise 1 to 2 hours at room temperature until more than doubled in size.

Preheat oven 450 to 500 degrees.  Place the pot in the oven at least 30 minutes prior to baking to preheat.  Once the dough has more than doubled in volume, remove the pot from the oven and place the dough in the pot seamside up.  Cover with the lid and bake 30 minutes.  Then remove the lid and bake 15 to 30 minutes uncovered, until the loaf is nicely browned.

Cool on a wire rack.

sullivan street bread 2

cartoon-strawberry-9So my first thought at reading this recipe was – I have to let this stuff sit for 12 HOURS?!?  How’s that gonna work?  But I mixed up the dough, went to bed and baked it the next day.  I slathered a piece with butter – heaven.  Then I dipped another piece in some olive oil and balsamic – heaven.  This bread is good, and totally worth the scheduling needed to make it.

I hope you all have enjoyed this week of highlighting a few of the recipes from Shauna’s new book, Bread & Wine.  Please pick up this book and let me know if you enjoy it.

shauna1Shauna Niequist is the author of Cold Tangerines and Bittersweet, and Bread & Wine. Shauna grew up in Barrington, Illinois, and then studied English and French Literature at Westmont College in Santa Barbara. She is married to Aaron, who is a pianist and songwriter. Aaron is a worship leader at Willow Creek and is recording a project called A New Liturgy. Aaron & Shauna live outside Chicago with their sons, Henry and Mac. Shauna writes about the beautiful and broken moments of everyday life–friendship, family, faith, food, marriage, love, babies, books, celebration, heartache, and all the other things that shape us, delight us, and reveal to us the heart of God.

Magical White Bean Soup

bread&wine_cover_artI can’t remember how I stumbled upon Shauna’s first book, Cold Tangerines, but after my first read through I was hooked.  A woman writing openly and honestly about her delights and struggles in life.  I read her heart.  I read her joys.  I read her tears.  And in doing so, I felt like her friend.

Bread & Wine is a celebration of gathering around the table with our friends and family.  Whether for an impromptu birthday party, non-traditional holiday celebrations, or just to share a favorite cookie with our best friend.  Shauna challenged me to think on why I want to have friends and family around my own table, and the atmosphere I give them to live in while in my home.

Bread & Wine will be released on April 9th, but is available for pre-order now at Amazon.com.

What people are craving isn’t perfection.  People aren’t longing to be impressed; they’re longing to feel like they’re at home.  If you create a space full of love and character and creativity and soul, they’ll take off their shoes and curl up with gratitude and rest, no matter how small, no matter how undone, no matter how odd. – Shauna Niequist, Bread & Wine

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Magical White Bean Soup

This recipe was inspired by Nancy Silverton’s Tuscan White Bean Soup with prosciutto and Parmesan in her cookbook, A Twist of the Wrist.  I liked the idea of a thick bean soup with ribbons of prosciutto (for the meat eaters), a dusting of Parmesan (for the dairy eaters), and a drizzle of balsamic vinaigrette.  Even though Nancy’s recipe calls for just olive oil, I’m in a serious balsamic phase, and I want it on everything – Bread and Wine.

Magical Bean Soup 1

Soup:
2 shallots, sliced
1/4 lb carrots, sliced into thin coins on a diagonal
1 blub fennel, sliced
4 celery ribs, sliced on a diagonal
6 can white beans in liquid (cannellini or great northern beans)
Salt and pepper to taste

Vinaigrette:
Dijon
Balsamic vinegar
Olive oil

For serving:
Prociutto, torn into ribbons
Parmesan, curled into strips with a vegetable peeler
1 tblsp rosemary, rough chopped

In a stockpot or dutch oven, soften two sliced shallots in olive oil over medium heat.  Add carrots, fennel and celery, allow to soften, 10 to 15 minutes.

Add beans in their liquid, cover and cook for 20 minutes at a gentle boil.

Taste, add salt and pepper, taste again – keep in mind that you’ll get a good amount of salt from the toppings.

Cook for an additional 20 minutes, or longer if you have time.  Off heat, mash with a potato masher or the back of a wooden spoon for a rustic, chunky texture.  If you’d like a smoother texture, run it through a food processor or use an immersion blender in the pot.

magical bean soup 2

Balsamic Vinaigrette:

Mix a spoonful of Dijon, a few tablespoons of balsamic, a quarter cup or so of olive oil, some salt and pepper in a glass jar, then shake well.  Adjust to taste – I usually like a 2:1 ratio of oil to vinegar and Dijon.

Serve with a small pitcher of vinaigrette, and bowls of prosciutto torn into ribbons, curls of Parmesan and shopped rosemary.

magical bean soup 4

cartoon-strawberry-9This soup is amazing.  Dense, rich and flavorful.  And I’m glad to have a “go to” recipe on hand for my friends and family who have dietary restrictions.

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shauna1Shauna Niequist is the author of Cold Tangerines and Bittersweet, and Bread & Wine. Shauna grew up in Barrington, Illinois, and then studied English and French Literature at Westmont College in Santa Barbara. She is married to Aaron, who is a pianist and songwriter. Aaron is a worship leader at Willow Creek and is recording a project called A New Liturgy. Aaron & Shauna live outside Chicago with their sons, Henry and Mac. Shauna writes about the beautiful and broken moments of everyday life–friendship, family, faith, food, marriage, love, babies, books, celebration, heartache, and all the other things that shape us, delight us, and reveal to us the heart of God.

Brannon’s Caesar Sald

bread&wine_cover_artI can’t remember how I stumbled upon Shauna’s first book, Cold Tangerines, but after my first read through I was hooked.  A woman writing openly and honestly about her delights and struggles in life.  I read her heart.  I read her joys.  I read her tears.  And in doing so, I felt like her friend.

Bread & Wine is a celebration of gathering around the table with our friends and family.  Whether for an impromptu birthday party, non-traditional holiday celebrations, or just to share a favorite cookie with our best friend.  Shauna challenged me to think on why I want to have friends and family around my own table, and the atmosphere I give them to live in while in my home.

Bread & Wine will be released on April 9th, but is available for pre-order now at Amazon.com.

But entertaining isn’t a sport or a competition.  It’s an act of love, if you let it be that.  You can twist it and turn it into anything you want – a way to show off your house, a way to compete with your friends, a way to earn love and approval.  Or you can decide that every time you open your door, it’s an act of love, not performance or competition or striving.  You can decide that every time people gather around your table, your goal is nourishment, not neurotic proving.  You can decide. – Shauna Niequist, Bread & Wine

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Brannon’s Caesar Salad

This is not a conventional Caesar salad dressing – it doesn’t call for eggs or anchovies, which makes it a great choice for pregnant women and non-anchovy lovers.  It’s bright and flavorful and a touch spicy, and we ask Brannon to make it at every possible opportunity.  This salad provides the perfect occasion to use up frozen bread cubes, and because romaine is hearty and the croutons are homemade and crusty, it’s a great option for picnics or open houses. – Bread & Wine

caesar 2

Salad
2 hearts of romaine, washed and dried and torn into bite-size pieces
2 tblsp grated Parmesan cheese

Dressing
1 garlic clove – I used the minced garlic from Trader Joes
1/4 c white vinegar
1/4 c olive oil
1 tsp Dijon mustard
A few dashes of Tabasco, to taste
Juice of half a lemon
1 tblsp grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp sugar

Chop garlic clove in a food processor, then add remaining ingredients and blend together.  Or chop a garlic clove, drop it into the bottom of an old pickle jar or jelly jar, add everything else, and shake like crazy.

Croutons
4 c bread cubes
1 tblsp oilive oil
1 tblsp grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and then toss the frozen bread cubes with olive oil, salt, pepper and grated Parm.  Bake until crispy and golden, about 8 to 10 minutes.

Toss the romaine lettuce with croutons, grated Parm and dressing.

caesar 3

cartoon-strawberry-9Husband is a BIG fan of a caesar salad, so this was a no brainer to try.  I loved the ease of throwing together my own croutons and the light spicy taste of the dressing was perfect.

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shauna1Shauna Niequist is the author of Cold Tangerines and Bittersweet, and Bread & Wine. Shauna grew up in Barrington, Illinois, and then studied English and French Literature at Westmont College in Santa Barbara. She is married to Aaron, who is a pianist and songwriter. Aaron is a worship leader at Willow Creek and is recording a project called A New Liturgy. Aaron & Shauna live outside Chicago with their sons, Henry and Mac. Shauna writes about the beautiful and broken moments of everyday life–friendship, family, faith, food, marriage, love, babies, books, celebration, heartache, and all the other things that shape us, delight us, and reveal to us the heart of God.