About Laura

If you’re driving down the “main drag” here on the Eastern Shore of Virginia (aka Route 13), one of the best things you can do for yourself is to turn off the beaten path. All roads lead to the water eventually – seaside or bayside. It doesn’t matter. Chances are you’ll stumble on a seafood shack in your travels. And this time of year, they’re all sure to have fresh soft shell crabs. A delicacy here, as well as around the world.

My favorite spot is Martin’s Crabhouse in Saxis, VA. It’s about a 20 minute drive for me on Chincoteague, but when it comes to crabs – it’s always worth the trip. You’ll usually find two old salts sitting on the front porch of the crab shack, no doubt talking about fish tales. One of the younger guys inside will shuffle over to the peeling tables and fish out a dozen for me – wriggling as they’re pulled out of the water and placed in the box. It really doesn’t get fresher than that.

Up until last week, breading and pan-frying was my go-to prepare a soft shell crab. But, after putting them on the grill…I fear I can never go back. First off, it was easier and way less mess. Always a win! But the flavor. THE FLAVOR. Sweet, tender crab with a heady dose of smokiness from the grill. I brushed with fresh garlic herb butter while cooking, which helped them to not stick to the grill – as well as impart more wonderful flavor. A few minutes on the grill, and they plump up to pure perfection.

I wanted to pair them with pasta, so I made a quick scampi sauce using the usual suspects – butter, garlic, lemon, white wine. And, a few cherry tomatoes and basil for a little extra flair and color. Was just enough to make the pasta moist, and paired perfectly with the crab – just making it’s flavors sing a little louder.

Move over, Shrimp Scampi. There’s a new kid on the block…

While I’m no stranger to sharing various recipes for loaf cakes on my blog, I’d not yet shared the recipe for my favorite loaf to date – Lemon Blueberry Yogurt Bread. And, loving you guys the way I do…I figured that was a situation that needed to be remedied immediately.

A tender moist loaf cake, studded with sweet juicy blueberries and bright sunny flecks of lemon zest. It’s the perfect accompaniment with tea or coffee in the morning. Or, for a little something sweet in the evening – chances are it won’t make it that long, though.

Yogurt and sour cream add a good dose of moisture and density, as do the blueberries. I like to use fresh berries when they’re in season, but I’ve used frozen many times too. Just add them in right from the freezer, no need to thaw them.

After baking, a sweet lemon glaze is poured onto the warm cake – allowing it to seep in, and really solidify that tart lemon flavor. It really makes the cake, ya’ll. And, this recipe is guaranteed to take the cake when it comes to loaf breads! Try it soon.

Source: adapted from Barefoot At Home by Ina Garten


It’s that time of year here on Chincoteague. When a friend or neighbor will knock on your door, and present you with a Ziploc bag full of freshly caught scallops, soft shell crabs, drum fish, shrimp…whatever happens to be good on the docks or our little roadside seafood markets that day. It’s pretty much my favorite time of year on our little island, aside from Pony Penning…

So when my BFF stopped by last week with these gorgeous scallops, it made me feel one step closer to full-blown summer. I’d also happened to restock my supply of Geechie Boy grits last week too. While shrimp & grits is a regular on our menu this time of year, I thought – why not scallops instead?

Seasoned them simply with some of my homemade seasoning salt and pepper, gave them a quick sear. Happened to some fresh spinach on hand that needed to be used, so I sauteed that with a little bit of garlic and champagne vinegar – which did a great job of deglazing the pan and bringing all that awesome flavor into the dish. I think kale or chard would also be wonderful in place of the spinach!

The grits are a perfect accompaniment, because they kind of take care of themselves on the stove while you get the scallops squared away. Also, grits are so versatile when it comes to different flavors. I wanted something with a little bit of a coastal twist – so I stirred in some Old Bay right before serving. Life changing, ya’ll…

Served with a lovely local Rosé and a salad, it was the perfect way to break-in dinners on the back porch season for us! 

Margaritas just happen to be my favorite cocktail. Fresh citrus, tequila, and triple sec – they sing in a perfect symphony. A symphony that adapts well to a newcomer in the mix. Like, ripe juicy mango for instance…

Gotta throw up props for this margaritas simplicity. While I usually have to make a fruit-based simple syrup for many of my fruit margs, which is little bit more time consuming – this one involves dumping in a bag of frozen mango chunks, some margarita mix, a little mango nectar, and your booze. Blend. Drink. Repeat.

Now, I’m a margarita on the rocks kinda gal, not usually into this frozen hulabaloo. However, I consider this a game changer. It was like drinking a fresh mango – it has that thicker mouth feel that mango lends. Even the husband, who isn’t into tequila, enjoyed it. I know ya’ll will too!

This recipe makes about 4 big margaritas, perfect for summer entertaining or a girls night get-together.

Shoutout to the good folks at Drizly for sponsoring this post. Did you guys know you can have pretty much any spirit you’ve ever desired delivered right to your door these days? Wonders of technology. They’ve got all kinds of great recipes too. Be sure to check them out!

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by the good folks at Drizly. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.