2015 is almost over. Yes we are barely in October, but I'm already listening to Christmas songs on Pandora. The weather in Los Angeles hasn't been the greatest, and it really feels as if the fall spirit is gone. I need the holiday weather to happen now so all the fun stuff can fall into place. But of course, since I am already listening to Christmas songs, you can guess I'm already jumping ahead.

I made a pear tart the other day because there was finally rain... at least for 10 minutes or so. But I went on a cozy-comfort food-holiday cooking splurge.

Velveeta Mac n Cheese-Jalapeno-Bacon-Mapled


  • 1 Box of Velveeta shell cheddar Mac n Cheese
  • 1/2 a Jalapeno (depends on how spicy your Jalapeno is and how spicy you want it to be)
  • 5 strips of bacon. Because bacon is always good.

Preheat the oven at 400 degrees layering your bacon on a sheet pan (I line it with parchment). At 10-12 minutes, take a peek to see how your bacon is doing because all ovens are different. Once your bacon start crisping up, I take maple syrup and drizzle it on 2 strips of bacon. As it sizzles, remove the 3 bacon without the syrup and let it soak on some paper towels. The other 2 in the oven with the syrup, make sure to keep an eye on because it can burn quick. I sprinkled just a little kosher salt because I used low sodium bacon. Flipped the bacon and added a little more syrup with just a hint more salt.

I chopped up the 3 strips of bacon and mixed it into the Mac n Cheese with the Jalapenos. (The Mac is made standard according to the box). I got some panko bread crumbs, tossed it with the bacon fat and let the heat toast the crumbs before putting them on top of the dish. Layer your mapled bacon and there you go! comfort Mac Bacon Cheese Jalapeno something!

** So yummy. I don't recommend you sticking this into the fridge to preheat it in the oven because the cheese does dry out.

Chile/spiced rubbed chicken

Find the recipe HERE.

Basically, follow the recipe in the link, minus the honey and lemon.

I oiled a baking dish with 5 cloves of smashed garlic. A little salt was sprinkled as well. After patting dry and layering the chicken (about 2-3 pounds) I sprinkled the rub on top followed by some olive oil. Massage the rub and oil onto the skin.

The chicken was baked at 375 for 40-45 minutes and I will gradually increase the temperature to 400 at around 30-35 minutes (depends on your oven and chicken size). Don't be intimidated by the crust, it is just blackened and it is delicious.

A simple store bought coleslaw mix was served with this meal. I had hearts glowing all over my face.

Are you ready for the holidays? We wait the whole year for this! why not start early?

Let me know if you have any questions!

Happy COoking!