Friday, August 29, 2008


Where did the summer go? Wasn't it just beautiful? We had loads of company, and a great deal of fun, both in town and at our lake home in Wisconsin. Now it is time for the kids to return to school and a routine. Even though I don't have school aged kids anymore I still look for the school bus in the morning and in the afternoons. I like to watch the kids walk home after a long day, carrying their heavy backpacks. I think they could use a good afternoon snack. Below you will find my version of a Cookie Pizza that is part of my Kids in the Cucina Classes at Cooks of Crocus Hill. This recipe is such a hit with the youngsters in my class and I hope it will be for your special child too. With a tall glass of cold milk and some fruit, you have a great snack to see your child through the after school activities and to dinner. I hope your kids love KIDS COOKIE PIZZA.


1 large sugar cookie
1-tablespoon strawberry or raspberry jam
Bar of white chocolate
Fruit roll-ups, red, green and yellow

Spread jam over sugar cookie, grate white chocolate over the jam. Cut out small circles of red fruit roll-ups and small strips of green and yellow fruit roll -ups. Place circles for peperoni and strips for peppers over the chocolate shavings.

To make one large pizza: Take 1 roll of Pillsbury sugar cookie dough and spread out into a circle on a cookie sheet. Bake according to directions or until nicely browned. Cover cooled cookie with jam and shave white chocolate onto the jam. Cut red fruit roll-up into circles and green and yellow roll-ups into strips, add the pieces of fruit to the pizza. Cut into wedges and serve.

To see my complete teaching schedule at cooks of Crocus Hill go to

Buon appetito,

Carmela Tursi Hobbins

Monday, August 11, 2008


Greetings from Carmela's Cucina,

I first read about the Old Rittenhouse Inn in Bayfield, Wi. about 25 years ago. Cuisine Magazine did a Christmas article about them and I have been wanting to make a visit there ever since. I finally made it last weekend.
Located at 301 Rittenhouse Ave. in Bayfield, it over looks Lake Superior and provided my husband, two of our close friends and me a beautiful weekend get away.

When we arrived to this beautiful B and B we were give a beautiful assortment of chocolate treats which included chocolate covered strawberries, a double chocolate cookies and a chocolate pecan clusters. The tray was decorated with fresh raspberries from one of the many farms in the area and with fresh figs which was a nice surprise.

After lunch we walked around charming Bayfield and admired the many boats docked in the marina. We returned to our rooms for a little rest and then gathered later in the afternoon for some champagne on the porch over looking one of the great lakes. The weather was picture postcard perfect and so was our weekend. It was so worth the 25 year wait to get there! I hope it won't take you as long to make the trip.

To learn more about this quaint little hotel and the area go to their website at: This weekend gets a perfect 10.

More about our weekend adventures in the days to come.

Buon appetito,

Carmela Tursi Hobbins

The rooms are spacious and done in the Victorian style and included a fireplace which would have been very welcome during the winter months and a whirlpool tub. The furnishings are quite beautiful, the room was very comfortable and the staff very warm and helpful.