Sunday, March 3, 2024

Recipe Review: Creamy Garlic Mushroom Chicken

For recipes for March, I accidentally purchased too much chicken, so March will be the month of chicken! The first recipe I tried, was my first foray into dredging and pan-frying chicken.  While the meal itself was a hit, I want to try a different technique than what was in this recipe for pan-frying chicken the next time; using no egg and just dry ingredients was interesting, but when I make a recipe I stick to the instructions the first time around!   

I made this meal on a weekend when I had my favorite handyman - my dad at my house to make some fantastic custom closets.  It was such a joy to be able to feed him while he was making three closets of my dreams!  AND thank goodness it tasted way better than it photographed!  It even reheated well as leftovers.     

I then made the meal during the work week for just myself and tried the pan fry again and tried to see if it would maybe photograph better! This is a recipe that I can now keep in my back pocket, minus the need to have mushrooms and heavy cream on hand which I don't always have.  

Friday, March 1, 2024


A month where life went a little off course, but for good reasons. My reading and workouts went off from the goals I set for this year, BUT I have not one but two brand new custom closets built by my dad and I, and the designing and building were the best experiences. SO things can take a turn and then the first of March, new goals can be set!

1. The Opera Sisters by Marianne Monson
2. Trailed by Kathryn Miles
3. Data Baby by Susannah Breslin
4. The Presence of Absence by Simon Van Booy

Total pages read, clicked and flipped: 1,080

Where Have I Been Reading?:
Appalachian Trail, VA

Sunday, February 25, 2024

Recipe Review: Homemade Pasta Sauce

Three weeks in a row with pasta, BUT this one is extra special.  One reason is because my nephew Jacob was here to help make and taste test.  AND second because the pasta sauce was made from tomatoes that I grew in my garden last year and froze.  

My hope is that this is the first of many recipes that includes things from my garden and with four garden beds and a few grow bags, my 2024 garden should be bountiful.  

Now to the recipe.  I had low expectations as I am quite opinionated on pasta sauce, but this one quickly went into the notebook to use over and over again.  With the aid of my immersion blender (first-time use!) my tomatoes were easily thinned out and adding minimal seasoning, the tomatoes were the star of the show which made me even happier that they were fresh from the garden because are always 10 times better than store-bought.  

Jacob chose penne pasta and we added some meatballs and this was a great dish for a rainy weekend.  

Sunday, February 18, 2024

Recipe Review: Slow Cooker Crack Chicken Soup

Slow cookers always make me think of wintertime meals and I was excited to try this recipe knowing from the beginning that it could freeze, so I could eat what is made and stow the leftovers for another time.  

I had heard of marry me chicken (and had it, very good!), so I was sort of intrigued by crack chicken.  A super easy recipe like most crock pot recipes are - put ingredients in turn on.  BUT mid way through, you pull the chicken out and need to shred and one of my most favorite kitchen hacks (thanks to Instagram!) is to place chicken or chunks of beef in your stand mixer and its shredded in mear seconds or minutes.  

Once your chicken is shredded put back in crockpot and then add the last few ingredients, 10 minutes and serve!  I served it as soup with some great garlic bread.  AND then the next day I added macaroni noodles to try something different and it was so good!  I was able to freeze the remainder in a few sandwich bags and froze laying down for easy storing.  

I hope to do this one once a year to eat off for a little bit and then have some in the freezer for later!

Thursday, February 15, 2024

Review: Data Baby by Susannah Breslin

Publisher: Legacy Lit
Pages: 224
Format: book
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  What if your parents turned you into a human lab rat on the day you were born? Would that change the story of your life? Would that change who you are?
When Susannah Breslin is a toddler, her parents enroll her in an exclusive laboratory preschool at the University of California, Berkeley, where she becomes one of 128 children who are research subjects in an unprecedented 30-year psychological experiment that predicts who she and her cohort will grow up to be. Decades later, trapped in an abusive marriage to a man with a violent history and battling breast cancer, she starts to wonder how growing up under a microscope shaped the person she became and her life choices. Is she the narrator of the story of her life—or is something else? Already a successful journalist, whose published work has appeared in ForbesThe Atlantic, and Harper’s Bazaar, she decides to make her own curious history the subject of her next investigation and embarks on a life-changing journey that will expose the dark secrets hidden behind the renowned longitudinal study of personality development that she grew up believing knew her better than she knew herself.

Kritters Thoughts:   Susannah Breslin grew up in California and with two very academic professors as parents, they enrolled her into this long-term research project where her and her life were observed and theories were made based on her reaction to tests and to life itself.  Essentially Susannah and many of her peers across the country were lab rats and their response to various tests were used to make predictions on what kind of adults they would become and the life they would end up with.  

Maybe spoiling it a bit, the last chapter was it for me.  While Susannah was a lab rat, aren't we all now with big tech tracking our every moves through google searches, phone analytics and gps.  It made me remind myself that for sure the instagram and facebook ads are targeted and know exactly what I am shopping for or what life issues I need solved (dog hair in laundry!).  So maybe in the end we are all being tracked and companies are predicting the life that we want and the products that will best get us there!

A quick little memoir that really made me think about the quality of research and had me pondering all of those personality tests that affirmed what I was already thinking about myself.      


Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Legacy Lit.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Sunday, February 11, 2024

Recipe Review: DATE night

Last year my parents recommended a fun appetizer, dates with goat cheese wrapped in bacon - YES!  I made it a quite a few times last year, but after buying a container of dates, I wanted to see other options and tried out two more.  I thought it would be fun to make dates for THE DATE night of the year - Valentine's Day.  So whether your person is salty or sweet, DATE night! 

All of these were perfect to prep ahead of time and then finish and plate and be ready for your DATE night.  

One of the new ones I tried, was dates with cream cheese, some pistachio kernels, and then a drizzle of honey, SO good!  I love cream cheese, its sweet but in my opinion not TOO sweet, so its the perfect stuffing with the plain date and then the sweet addition of honey.  Now the pistachios came in a large bag and maybe on the expensive side, so going to see what else I can make with pistachios!  

The second date recipe I tried was a bit of a take on a snickers, with peanut butter stuffed inside and then dipped in chocolate melted with coconut oil.  This was so easy and so so yummy.  I loved that I could make these and stick them in the fridge to enjoy for days.  

So if you need an idea for this week of love, may I suggest one or more DATE recipes for DATE night! 

Friday, February 9, 2024

Review: The Opera Sisters by Marianne Monson

Publisher: Shadow Mountain
Pages: 352
Format: eARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:   Based on the true story of the Cook sisters, who smuggled valuables out of 1930s Nazi Germany to finance a daring, secret operation to help Jews find hope for a new life in England British sisters Ida and Louise Cook enjoy their quiet, unassuming lives in south London. Ida writes romance novels, and Louise works as a secretary. In the evenings, the sisters indulge in their shared love for opera, saving their money to buy records and attend performances throughout England and Europe, becoming well-known by both performers and fellow opera lovers. But when Hitler seizes power in 1933, he begins targeting and persecuting German Jews, passing laws that restrict their rights and their lives. The sisters continue their trips to the German opera houses, but soon, Jewish members of the opera community covertly approach the sisters, worried that they will be stripped of their wealth and forced to leave their homes and the country. Danger looms on the horizon, threatening to spill across all of Europe’s borders. Ida and Louise vow to help, but how can two ordinary working-class women with limited means make a difference? Together with their beloved opera community, the sisters devise a plan to personally escort Jewish refugees from Germany to England. The success of the plan hinges on Ida and Louise’s ability to smuggle contraband jewelry and furs beneath the watchful eyes of the SS soldiers guarding various checkpoints. But how many trips can they make before someone blows a whistle? Or before the final curtain falls on Germany’s borders?

Kritters Thoughts:  A set of sisters that really lived through World War II and were driven to help Jewish people who were watching the rise of Hitler and his army and their hatred for their ethnicity, so Ida and Louise Cook were drawn to help in any way possible.  

I have read a very large number of World War II books, so I think my standards for this sub-genre of historical fiction are quite high and for me this one didn't hit the mark.  The reason this one wasn't a right fit for me was mostly in the format of the book and how it was put together.  From the beginning, the way the book was written/put together made it feel like a bunch of short stories that abruptly ended and then started back up.  I didn't feel as though the book had flow and it was interruptive and hard to read.  

With that being said, I did love these sisters and wanted to hear more of their story.  I loved their determination to help people that they didn't even know and the many ways they went about trying to take care of each and every one of them no matter their age or lot in life.  The moments where the book really focused on them and their endeavors I loved, but it would stop all of a sudden and go somewhere else and it was just jarring and took me out of the story.  

I would love to find another story about these women and their fearlessness.  


Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Netgalley.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Sunday, February 4, 2024

Recipe Review: Super Bowl snacks

With the Super Bowl coming up next week, I decided I wanted to spend the last week testing out recipes that could be used for a Super Bowl party, so two versions of air fryer Fried Pickle Chips and then a from scratch cheesy dip with some pretzel bites.

I am a huge fan of my air fryer.  And I am a fan of fried pickles, so wanted to see if I could make them at home in a semi-healthy way.  The first version, I used panko bread crumbs and they were fine, but I didn't love how thick the bread crumbs were.  

So second version I used this batter that is meant for chicken, but why not try it with fried pickles - AND yes, totally worked and loved them.  Need to remember to spray some pam on the foil, but this will for sure be the way I make for Super Bowl and beyond! 

Finally.  an easy cheese sauce that you can make and then put in a crock pot to keep it going for a party.  AND it is a dupe for the cheese sauce at Shake Shack.  It was nice and easy and tasted so good.  I may have cheated a bit with frozen pretzel bites that I threw in the oven, but making pretzel bites is on a future to do list.      

Friday, February 2, 2024

Review: One in a Millennial by Kate Kennedy

Publisher: St Martin's Press
Pages: 336
Format: audiobook
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  From pop culture podcaster and a voice of a generation, Kate Kennedy, a celebration of the millennial zeitgeist

One In a Millennial is an exploration of pop culture, nostalgia, the millennial zeitgeist, and the life lessons learned (for better and for worse) from coming of age as a member of a much-maligned generation.

Kate is a pop culture commentator and host of the popular millennial-focused podcast Be There in Five . Part-funny, part-serious, Kate navigates the complicated nature of celebrating and criticizing the culture that shaped her as a woman, while arguing that great depths can come from surface-level interests.

With her trademark style and vulnerability, One In a Millennial is sharp, hilarious, and heartwarming all at once. She tackles AOL Instant Messenger, purity culture, American Girl Dolls, going out tops, Spice Girl feminism, her feelings about millennial motherhood, and more. Kate’s laugh-out-loud asides and keen observations will have you nodding your head and maybe even tearing up.

Kritters Thoughts:  Were you born between 1981 and 1995?  Did you survive Y2K?  Do you know the exact musical melody of dial-up internet?  THEN you must listen to this book immediately!  

Kate Kennedy was raised in Richmond, VA and made me laugh out loud and even cry a few tears while listening to her dive back into time and recount all the things that millennials have survived and maybe even why we are who we are!  Her cultural references made me laugh at myself so hard and I immediately followed her on instagram and subscribed to her podcast like the fan girl millennial that I am!  

I knew before starting this book that non fiction is my pure wheelhouse of audiobooks, so I knew that I would want to listen to this one and I was right!  Listening to Kate Kennedy share her own words and hear her laugh at herself and choke up was just the right addition to my commutes and hours of house chores.  While I want to branch out this year in my audio listening, it was nice to start the year with one I knew that would be a home run. 

My first audiobook of the year and although I completely loved it, it took me a weird amount of time to finish it!  Made me realize how much I want to find more time in my days and weeks to make audiobooks a priority.    


Audiobook 2024 Challenge: 1 out of 24

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Netgalley.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Thursday, February 1, 2024



To recap January, I was ready for a new year to begin and made a few goals for the month and the year and I knocked January out of the park!  I tried and loved 4 recipes and even have some ready for February.  My reading is on track, maybe a little behind in the audiobook world, but that's ok.  And my workouts have been so good - well-rounded, inspiring, and a wonderful break from the things going on around me.    

1. Rabbit Hole by Kate Brody (audiobook)
2. A Light Beyond the Trenches by Alan Hlad
3. City Under One Roof by Iris Yamashita
4. Yours for the Taking by Gabrielle Korn
5. Seven Girls Gone by Allison Brennan
6. Diva by Daisy Goodwin
7. The Missing Witness by Allison Brennan
8. Cold Pursuit by Nancy Mehl
9. Cold Threat by Nancy Mehl
10. One in a Millennial by Kate Kennedy (audiobook)

Total pages read, clicked, and flipped: 3,474

Where Have I Been Reading?:
New York City
Los Angeles, CA
St. Louis, MO
Burlington, IA

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Review: Cold Threat by Nancy Mehl

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Pages: 336
Format: eARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  Twenty years ago, several people were murdered in Des Moines, and the only evidence left behind was a snowman ornament hanging on a tree on their front lawns. With a suspect behind bars, the killings have come to an end--or so everyone thought. But now crimes with a similar MO are happening in a small Iowa town, and a local detective believes the killer is back and ready to strike again.

With little time on the clock before they have another murder on their hands, private investigators River Ryland and Tony St. Clair must work alongside Tony's father to find evidence that will uncover an evil that has survived for far too long. As the danger mounts and the suspect closes in, it will take all they have to catch a killer--before he catches one of them.

Kritters Thoughts:  The second in a series and before I proceed, I absolutely suggest starting with book one in this series as there is a lot of character development for River and Tony in book one that is necessary to understand the happenings in book two.  

For book two, I was so glad I read it during the cold month of January and highly suggest reading it now OR holding it for next year during the holiday season as it had perfect wintry vibes.  River and Tony head to his parent's house to help his dad who is still in law enforcement with a serial killer that has moved from Des Moines to Burlington and at the beginning there seems to be no ties from one victim to another.  

Another book by Nancy Mehl where the pacing was just so spot on.  The way the author drops the hints and the action were just so good.  Right when I thought it would pause something is thrown our way and I was honestly gasping out loud on an airplane!  Although there was one moment where I predicted something, but it was still satisfying to be right and to see the story go there (sorry vague, can't spoil!)

As I stated yesterday, this book also had strong Christian fiction themes running throughout the book.  It fit with the character of River and Tony, but even still for me it was distracting from the mystery.  The mystery is still good and I will read the next one, but just needed to share.  

I am excited that we don't have to wait too long for book three to arrive,  as it will be here this summer!


Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Partner in Crime Tours.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Monday, January 29, 2024

Review: Cold Pursuit by Nancy Mehl

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Pages: 336
Format: eARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  Ex-FBI profiler River Ryland still suffers from PTSD after a case that went horribly wrong. Needing a fresh start, she moves to St. Louis to be near her ailing mother and opens a private investigation firm with her friend and former FBI partner, Tony St. Clair. They're soon approached by a grieving mother who wants them to find out what happened to her teenaged son who disappeared four years ago. River knows there's almost no hope the boy is still alive, but his mother needs closure, and River and Tony need a case, no matter how cold it might be.

But as they follow the boy's trail, which gets more complicated at every turn, they find themselves in the path of a murderer determined to punish anyone who gets in his way. With a killer on the loose set on finishing the job he started, will River be pulled back into her tormented past or finally face the demons that haunt her?

Kritters Thoughts:  The first in a series where two former FBI agents leave after a horrific tragedy, move to St. Louis to be near River's mother, and decide to put their skills in a new space as private investigators.  Their first case together happens when a mother approaches them to ask for help in solving the case of her son who has been missing for a long time and she just wants closure as to what happened.  River and Tony take this on with the hope of finding something and starting their new company on the right track.  

I like to make folks aware of elements of books without spoiling, so you can make a decision on if this book would be right for you.  This book and the second that I will be reviewing tomorrow both have heavy elements of Christianity woven in the story.  While this is a mystery, I would personally shelve this book in the Christian fiction book as it is strong in its language about that faith.  

Now for the mystery itself, it is self-contained in this book and the mystery is resolved, but as I know how book two starts, I for sure would recommend starting at book one as there are a lot of character developments and plot points that are needed from book one to book two.  I loved that this mystery had depth and layers so it took a bit for all the pieces to be put into place and while it took me awhile to figure it all out, I don't feel as though it came out of left field.  AND the pacing - spot on.  I love when a mystery book really gets sprinting towards the end and you just can't put it down - such was the case for this one!   


Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Netgalley.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Sunday, January 28, 2024

Recipe Review: Boursin pasta

It's winter and I am craving the pasta dishes, so two weeks in a row with trying pasta dishes.  This dish reminded me of one of those dishes that went viral over the pandemic, but maybe its the adult version using Boursin cheese.  

Nice and simple, Boursin, tomatoes, spices and pasta.  I chose to get some thin spaghetti wanting to try that with this and a future pasta dish!  

I would absolutely make this one again, BUT next time I want to add a meat either some italian sausage and/or some seasoned chicken.  I will try this one again with a few additions.  

Friday, January 26, 2024

Review: Diva by Daisy Goodwin

Publisher: St Martin's Press
Pages: 336
Format: eARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  In the glittering and ruthlessly competitive world of opera, Maria Callas was known simply as la divina: the divine one. With her glorious voice, instinctive flair for the dramatic, and striking beauty, she was the toast of the grandest opera houses in the world. But her fame was hard won: Raised in Nazi-occupied Greece by a mother who mercilessly exploited her golden voice, she learned early in life to protect herself from those who would use her for their own ends.

When she met the fabulously rich Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis, for the first time in her life, she believed she’d found someone who saw the woman within the legendary soprano. She fell desperately in love. He introduced her to a life of unbelievable luxury, showering her with jewels and sojourns in the most fashionable international watering holes with celebrities like Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, and the Duke and Duchess of Windsor.

And then suddenly, it was over. The international press announced that Aristotle Onassis would marry the most famous woman in the world, former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, leaving Maria to pick up the pieces.

Kritters Thoughts:  A historical fiction book about someone I had never heard of and while this book didn't completely work for me, I am glad I read it and glad to know more about Maria Callas.  

For me, this book didn't get going until at least 50% in and from there I was hooked, but it felt like it took a bit to get there.  Some of the beginning was worth reading to establish how much of a diva Maria was, but for me it felt as though there was more than enough to get that memo!  

When Maria meets Aristotle Onassis, that is when the book begins and you see her drop the diva attitude with him and it was so interesting to watch her give up all of what she had created for a man.  This part of the book made me want to read more about both her relationship with Onassis, but Jackie's as well.  I also had to look her up and watch some of the videos of her performing and seeing her in all of her glory in her space.  

I am a fan of this author and have enjoyed her other books and will still read her future books, but sure hope for the plot to get going a little faster in the next one.  


Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Netgalley.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Tuesday, January 23, 2024

Review: The Missing Witness by Allison Brennan

Publisher: MIRA
Pages: 352
Format: eARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  When a key witness goes missing, Quinn and Costa must find her before a killer silences her for good…

Detective Kara Quinn is back in Los Angeles to testify against a notorious human trafficker, finally moving past the case that upended her life. But when the accused is shot by a masked man in broad daylight, the chaotic scene of the crime turns up few reliable bystanders. And one witness—a whistleblower who might be the key to everything—has disappeared.

After the prosecuting DDA is stabbed to death, it’s clear that anyone who knows too much about the investigation is in danger, and tracking down the witness becomes a matter of life or death. With government corruption running rampant and someone on the inside trying to pin anything they can on Kara, she trusts nobody except FBI special agent Matt Costa and a handful of allies.

But when explosive secrets begin to surface within the LAPD and FBI, Kara questions everything she thought she knew about the case, her colleagues and the life she left behind months ago.

Now Quinn and Costa must race to find the missing witness and get to the bottom of the avalanche of conspiracies that has rocked LA to its core…before it's too late.

Kritters Thoughts:  Another story with Detective Kara Quinn at the center, but this one felt different, she is back on her home turf in Los Angeles, CA and what starts as a normal visit with her testifying in the case that made her leave the city.  But of course, nothing is normal and things go down hill very quickly with murder, shady cops and a whole lot of investigating.  

Before I go further as I said yesterday with the previous book in this series, I really suggest the reader starting at book one in this series as the character development from book to book is important and it helps to know where Kara Quinn has been before you go into this one.  

This book felt different from the others, but that was a problem for me, the only thing was the HUGE cast of characters to keep straight.  From LAPD to FBI to non police officers, this book had such a huge cast and it took a lot of concentration to keep everyone straight.  AND of course some are the culprit, so having to keep my eye on them made for some slower reading, but that was not because of the pace.  The pacing in this book was fantastic, while I may have personally slowed down so I could gather all of the evidence, Allison Brennan keeps the plot moving and from one bomb shell to another, this book kept going and going!   

I wonder if this is the last of the Kara Quinn series, I wouldn't mind more and see where she goes after this one concluded.  


Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from HarperCollins.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Monday, January 22, 2024

Review: Seven Girls Gone by Allison Brennan

Publisher: MIRA
Pages: 352
Format: eARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  For three years, women have been disappearing—and eventually turning up dead in the small bayou town of St. Augustine, Louisiana. Police detective Beau Hebert is the only one who seems to care, but with every witness quickly silenced and a corrupt police department set on keeping the cases unsolved, Beau’s investigation stalls at every turn.

With nobody else to trust, Beau calls in a favor from his friend on the FBI’s Mobile Response Team. While LAPD detective Kara Quinn works undercover to dig into the women’s murders and team leader Matt Costa officially investigates the in-custody death of a witness, Beau might finally have a chance at solving the case.

But in a town where everyone knows everyone, talking gets you killed and secrets stay buried, it’s going to take the entire team working around the clock to unravel the truth. Especially when they discover that the deep-seated corruption and the deadly drug-trafficking ring at the center of it all extends far beyond the small-town borders.

Kritters Thoughts:  An absolute Allison Brennan fan, I was excited to catch up on this series and read this one and the one following in quick order.  And before I dive in, this is one of those mystery series where the mystery is contained in each book, but the main characters have development from book to book, so I recommend going back to book one and start at the beginning.

Kara Quinn and team are called to Louisiana where there has been a string of young ladies murdered, but it seems as though the local police aren't prioritizing solving these murders anytime soon.  At the beginning of this book, I felt like I was thrown in and maybe missed something, but this feeling ended when Kara and team show up and it almost feels like Detective Beau Herbert goes back to the beginning to get the team caught up and also the reader!  

For some reason Allison Brennan is able to twist and weave a few mysteries all at the same time and while it could feel like too much, because they interplay so much, it is just right!  This had a lot of victims and a few culprits, so took a bit to get all the players straight, but it was worth reading slow at the beginning to enjoy the fast pace as all the puzzle pieces came together in the end.    


Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Netgalley.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Sunday, January 21, 2024

Recipe Review: Creamy Pasta

By the end of this year, I am hoping to become an expert when it comes to make a roux, but today isn't that day!  I was excited when I saw a YouTuber that I follow make this recipe recently it was a pasta with a creamy sauce but no roux in sight.  The original recipe puts peas in and I am not a fan of peas, so I went with asparagus that I cooked in my air fryer. 

And when making this recipe I was trying a trick I had seen, cooking bacon in a pot, wanting to see if that would contain the bacon grease mess - hint it did not.  Still puckered all over the place!  AND my first batch burned in the blink of the eye, so glad I had only done half and had another half to try.  The second batch worked, but still looking for a better way to bacon.  

Fresh bacon made this recipe so much better, I use the "real bacon bits" on salads and potatoes, but I for sure recommend going with real fresh bacon for this one.  

I want to make this recipe again, but instead of parmesan cheese try something else - maybe a cheddar.  The sauce consistency was great and I loved the asparagus and bacon, but want to try out another cheese. 

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