Celebrating Ina



I didn’t mean to shout first thing in the morning.  But, come on.  It’s Ina.

We had this weekend ‘Burgh trip planned long before I knew Ina was going to be in town.  Steelers-Ravens…you know, priorities.

But, my sister encouraged me to do a little maneuvering to arrive in time for Ina, and I’m so glad she did.  If I’m picking a favorite food television personality, there’s no contest.  Ina’s at the top of my list.  Not only do I love her food and her style, I really admire her general philosophy.  While she’s incredibly successful and a very savvy business woman, she still says that her top priority is making her husband, Jeffrey, a delicious, home-cooked dinner.  I really appreciate that.  Business success plus a comforting and harmonious home life.  A formula for happiness, I think.

In honor of Ina, I wanted to share a handful of my favorite recipes of hers.  As I sat down with so many choices, I thought it would be difficult to pick just four, but it was actually pretty simple.  These four recipes are a part of my regular meal rotation, and I honestly never get tired of them.

Her panko-crusted salmon is probably my all-time favorite Ina dish.  I make it all the time.  It’s so easy to put together, it’s great to make ahead and bake when you’re ready, I usually have everything on hand except for the salmon itself, and it really packs a flavor punch with all the Dijon mustard.  It’s sort of a wow, too.  People never believe how easy it is.

Ina’s smoked salmon spread is so delicious and simple to make, and it’s a great make-ahead appetizer for entertaining.  The pappa al pomidoro is a more seasonal choice, but there’s something so comforting about this soup, not only in eating it, but also in making it.  It feels like a grown-up version of the tomato soup we all loved as kids.  And, lemon fusilli, how do I love thee?  I can’t even count the ways.  You know how some recipes just speak to you?  This one speaks to me.  I mean, pasta?  With cream?  And, lemon?  And, tons of parmesan?  Yes and please.  It’s really versatile, too.  You can add whatever veges you want, and adding some roasted shrimp on top is never a bad idea.

See you tonight, Ina!


  1. Seeing Ina with my two daughters was unspeakably wonderful! I will try the panko salmon first, but the lemon fusilli sounds “fabulous”!

  2. Favorite message from Ina’s talk last night: “cook your own food.”

    Do you think the panko salmon recipe would work with thin pork cutlets or chicken tenders? Inquiring minds (and seafood-allergy-sufferers) want to know.

    • The mustard and panko method would work great with both chicken or pork. It’s great to make ahead, too. The mustard sort of marinates the meat.

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