Book Review: The Genius of Dogs

Dogs book cover


I have been reading The Genius of Dogs and amazed at what I am learning. I have been a dog parent most of my life and wish I had known even a fraction of this knowledge years ago.
Brian Hare and Vanessa Woods have gone in to depth to uncover just how intelligent dogs are in a scientific approach. Thank you folks for your extensive research and insight into the minds of dogs. I think all dog owners should have this book as part of their library. Visit their website, to test your furry friends intelligence.
You can purchase this wonderful book at


Recipe: Tarragon Chicken Linguine Recipe

Tarragon Chicken Linguine

Tarragon Chicken Linguine Recipe
This quick recipe features chicken, broccoli and pasta all topped in a light sauce. It’s a complete healthy meal in just 25 minutes.
MAKES: 4 servings
SERVING SIZE: 1 1/2 cup
6 ounces dried linguine or fettuccine

2 cups broccoli florets

1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth

2 teaspoons cornstarch

1/4 teaspoon lemon-pepper seasoning or ground black pepper

3 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves (12 ounces total), cut into bite-size strips

2 teaspoons olive oil or cooking oil

1 tablespoon snipped fresh tarragon or dill or 1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon or dill, crushed

1. Cook pasta according to directions, adding broccoli the last 4 minutes. Drain; keep warm.

2. Combine broth, cornstarch, and seasoning; set aside.

3. In a large nonstick skillet, cook chicken in hot oil 4 minutes or until no longer pink, stirring often.

4. Stir cornstarch mixture; add to skillet. Cook and stir until thickened. Stir in tarragon; cook for 2 minutes. Serve over pasta. Makes 4 (1 1/2-cup) servings.
Credit: recipe from Better Homes and Garden’s Test Kitchen.

Recipe: Grilled Chicken, Spinach, and Pear Pitas

Grilled Chicken, Spinach, and Pear Pitas

Grilled Chicken, Spinach, and Pear Pitas

Use warm pita bread to deliciously corral a sophisticated combination of spinach, pear, and chicken. Top with a robust goat cheese sauce.
MAKES: 6 servings
12 ounces skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

3 whole wheat pita bread rounds, halved crosswise

1/4 cup light mayonnaise

1 ounce soft goat cheese (chevre)

1 tablespoon fat-free milk

1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

1 green onion, thinly sliced

1 1/2 cups fresh spinach leaves

1 small pear or apple, cored and thinly sliced

1. Brush chicken on both sides with some of the 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar; set aside. For a charcoal grill, place chicken on the rack of an uncovered grill directly over medium coals. Grill for 12 to 15 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink (170 degrees F), turning once and brushing with the remainder of the 1 tablespoon vinegar halfway through grilling. (For a gas grill, preheat grill. Reduce heat to medium. Place chicken on the grill rack over heat. Cover and grill as above.) Cut each chicken breast half into 1/2-inch-thick slices.

2. Meanwhile, wrap pita bread rounds in foil. Place on the grill rack directly over medium coals. Grill about 8 minutes or until bread is warm, turning once halfway through grilling.
For sauce::

3. In a small bowl, use a fork to stir together mayonnaise, goat cheese, milk, and the 1 teaspoon vinegar. Stir in green onion.

4. To assemble, arrange spinach, pear slices, and chicken in pita bread halves. Spoon about 1 tablespoon sauce into each pita.

Broiling directions: Preheat broiler. Brush chicken with vinegar as directed. Preheat broiler. Place chicken breast halves on the ungreased rack of a broiler pan. Broil chicken 4 to 5 inches from the heat for 12 to 15 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink (170 degrees F), turning once and brushing with the remainder of the 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar halfway through broiling. Heat pitas according to package directions. Continue as directed.

Credit: recipe from Better Homes and Gardens Test Kitchen.

Lunch Recipe: Chopped Salad in a Pocket

Chopped Salad in a Pocket

Chopped Salad in a Pocket
Summer squash, broccoli, and tomatoes are tossed with dressing and put in a hummus-lined pita for this vegetarian sandwich recipe.
YIELD: 4 pita pockets
1 cup chopped yellow summer squash and/or zucchini

3/4 cup chopped broccoli

2 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped (about 2/3 cup)

8 pitted kalamata or ripe olives, chopped

2 tablespoons snipped fresh flat-leaf parsley or regular parsley

2 tablespoons bottled fat-free Italian salad dressing

2 6 – 7 whole wheat pita bread rounds, halved crosswise, or four 6- to 7-inch whole wheat flour tortillas

1/2 cup Spicy Hummus (below)

1. In a medium bowl, combine squash, broccoli, tomatoes, olives, and parsley; toss with salad dressing. Divide among six airtight storage containers or resealable plastic bags. Cover or seal and chill overnight.

2. Spread the inside of each pita bread half or each tortilla with 2 tablespoons of the Spicy Hummus. If using tortillas, fold each in half. Wrap pita bread or tortillas in plastic wrap or place each in a covered storage container.

3. For each serving, pack a container with vegetable mixture and a pita or tortilla in an insulated container with an ice pack. Serve within 5 hours.

4. To serve, unfold tortilla if using. Add vegetable mixture to pita or tortilla. Fold or roll tortilla if using. Makes 4 pita pockets.
Spicy Hummus Recipe
IELD: 1-1/3 cups

1 15 – 19 ounce can navy or cannellini beans (white kidney beans), rinsed and drained

1/4 cup bottled fat-free Italian salad dressing

1 tablespoon spicy brown mustard

1. In a food processor, combine navy or cannellini beans (white kidney beans); Italian salad dressing; and brown mustard. Cover and process until smooth and spreadable. (Or mash beans with a potato masher or fork. Stir in salad dressing and mustard.) Transfer to an airtight storage container. Cover and chill for up to 1 week. Makes 1-1/3 cups.

Credit: Recipe from

Recipe: Spring Primavera

Spring Primavera

Spring Primavera

2 large zucchini, or 1 lb baby zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 pound bow-tie pasta

1/2 pound asparagus, cut into 2-inch pieces

1 cup frozen peas

1/4 cup chopped chives

3 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley

1 tablespoon lemon zest

1/2 cup grated Parmesan


1. Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Toss zucchini and garlic with 1 tbsp olive oil. Spread mixture evenly on a rimmed baking sheet and roast, stirring once, until zucchini is tender, about 15 min.

2. Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions, adding asparagus and peas 3 to 4 min before it’s done. Drain, reserving some pasta water, and transfer to a large bowl.

3. Toss pasta mixture with the zucchini, garlic, chives, parsley, zest, Parmesan and 1 tbsp olive oil. Add 2 to 4 tbsp of reserved pasta water. Top with extra Parmesan. Makes 4 servings.

Credit: Recipe from

Recipe: Sauteed Chicken with Garlicky Pasta

Sauteed Chicken with Garlicky Pasta

Makes: 4 to 6 servings
Prep 20 mins
Start to Finish 20 mins


2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (1 lb. total)

1/4 cup olive oil

1 pound angel-hair pasta

1/2 pound mushrooms, thinly sliced

1 large red onion, sliced

3 large garlic cloves, minced

1 14 1/2 ounce can chicken broth

1 tablespoon flour

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

6 plum tomatoes, thinly sliced

1/4 cup chopped, fresh flat-leaf parsley


1. Combine 1 teaspoon thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper in a cup. Sprinkle over both sides of each chicken breast. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken to skillet and cook until golden and cooked through, turning once, about 7 minutes. Transfer to a platter and cover.

2. Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon oil same skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in mushrooms and onion and cook, stirring occasionally until onion is translucent, about 7 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook 1 minute more. Transfer to a large bowl. Whisk together broth, flour, and mustard, then add to skillet and bring to a simmer, about 1 minute. Stir in tomatoes, parsley, and remaining thyme and cook 1 minute more.

3. Transfer drained pasta to a large serving bowl and toss with remaining oil, salt, and pepper, then stir in mushroom mixture and hot broth mixture. Serve with chicken.
Credit from