Frito Pie [RECIPE]

Frito Pie

It doesn’t have to be game day to serve up a yummy family favorite like Frito Pie.
(Photo by Jathan Fink, Jadeworks Entertainment)

As a kid, Frito Pie was always one of my favorite school lunches. It was crunchy, cheesy and simply good, filling grub. But one of the things I didn’t like about it is that sometimes it was a little too oily, which wasn’t a good thing for a teenager worried about his complexion. Now I’ve replaced half the meat with ground turkey, added more seasoning for a deeper flavor profile, and even thrown in a bit of corn meal for extra creaminess. I hope you like this grown-up version as much as I do! Read more of this post

Apricot-Glazed Pork Tenderloin [RECIPE]

Apricot-Glazed Pork Tenderloin

Delicious and easy to prepare, our Apricot-Glazed Pork Tenderloin is sure to become one of your family’s favorite meals.
(Photo by Jathan Fink, Jadeworks Entertainment)

I’ve always been a bargain shopper. That’s one of the reasons I always stock up on cuts of meat like pork tenderloin when they go on sale during the holidays or when the butcher marks them down for quick sale at the end of the day. That way, when I want to entertain, I have my selection of meat in the freezer and don’t break the bank when I decide to cook for guests. Also, pork tenderloin is tasty and versatile. But this is one of my absolute favorite ways to prepare it and your family will rave over the delicious sauce. Best part of all is, this is one of the simplest dishes ever to make. Read more of this post

Round Bottom Pot Roast [RECIPE]

Round bottom pot roast

Pot roast is a traditional family favorite that never goes out of style. Serve it with a silky smooth gravy for extra flavor!
(Photo by Jathan Fink, Jadeworks Entertainment)

Heather and I both have memories of our mothers cooking pot roast for family dinner. It is the kind of meat-and-potatoes meal most men (and growing boys) crave, and our moms undoubtedly liked making it because this dish’s long cook time allowed them to multitask while the meal simmered on the stove. Economical and delicious, this recipe results in a juicy piece of meat that cuts like butter when it is finished cooking. Top it off with a rich, thick gravy and serve alongside mashed potatoes and veggies, and your family will undoubtedly come running long before you even call them to dinner.  Read more of this post

Chili Cheese Coneys

Chili Cheese Coney

A quick and easy family favorite, our Chili Cheese Coneys dish up lots of flavor and are on the table in minutes.

Sometimes our friends and readers tell us that it seems like we never eat simple fare. We beg to differ! Here is one of our favorite dinners to make on a cold and hectic day. Whether you call them Coneys or Chili Dogs, it seems like nearly every community across America has its own recipe for this family favorite. We top juicy frankfurters with mustard, chili and a blend of cheeses for a quick and easy meal the whole crew will love.

PREP: 5 minutes
COOK: 5 minutes


  • 8 best-quality hot dogs or frankfurters
  • 8 best-quality hot dog buns
  • Mustard
  • 1 recipe of Busy Day Chili
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
  • Pickles (optional)


  1. Fill a sauce pan with 3 cups water and bring to a boil; reduce heat. Place hot dogs in water and simmer for 5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 300°F. Warm buns in oven until slightly golden; remove from heat.
  3. In a small bowl, combine cheeses and set aside.
  4. Split open buns and drizzle with favorite mustard. Place one hot dog in each bun. Spread about 1/2 cup of chili over each hot dog and cover with cheese. Serve with pickles, if desired.

YIELDS: 8 servings

© 2011 Jadeworks Entertainment. All rights reserved.

Jathan’s Lip-Smackin’, Belly-Fillin’ Split Pea Soup

Jathan's Lip-Smackin', Belly-Fillin' Split Pea Soup

In an effort to recreate a childhood memory, Jathan conjured up this hearty and delicious split pea soup recipe your family will ask for time and again.

Growing up in Southern California, one of my fondest memories is going to Pea Soup Andersen’s restaurant on I-5. Kitschy and rustic, the restaurant is world-famous for their signature soup, which my family could never get enough of. Years later, when I wanted to recreate the recipe, I conjured up this tasty version which some have claimed is even better than the original. My family loves the recipe because it is hearty and delicious. I love it because it is yummy on its own, or makes the perfect accompaniment to a grilled cheese sandwich for a tasty lunch any time of year.

PREP: 15 minutes
COOK: 3 hours


  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 6 cups water
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 16-ounce bag dried split peas (about 2 cups), rinsed
  • 2 large or 3 medium smoked ham shanks
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper


  1. In a large Dutch oven, sauté onion in oil until tender. Add the remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil, reduce heat.
  2. Cover and simmer for 3 hours or until peas are tender and soup has thickened. Discard bay leaves. Remove ham shanks and set aside until cool. Cube meat and return to pot. Stir thoroughly and serve.

TIP: Be sure to rinse the split peas and discard any shriveled peas or bits of dirt before they are added to the soup.

YIELDS: 8 servings

© 2011 Jadeworks Entertainment