Well… I guess you could say this website happened on accident. But with all things in life, I have come to realize there are no real accidents. Everything happens for a reason… The good, the bad and the surprising.

I have wanted to write a salad cookbook for sometime and decided I would call that cookbook “Chopped and Tossed” because with all my salads, I chop or shave everything and toss it before serving. I swear it taste better that way. Before self publishing a cookbook we (my incredible husband, Rob and I) decided to take some pictures of our everyday meals and see how it went… if we enjoyed staging our lunches and dinners then maybe we could actually compile photos of salads we have prepared and put together a cookbook. If not, then we would go our marry way and just share the recipes with friends.

One night, with White Bean Chicken Chili on the stove, the inspiration hit. Next thing you know, I’m asking Rob to dust off his camera and am unnecessarily decorating our table as if we are hosting some honorary guest. Due to our tight budget, flowers on the table are a thing of the past, and desperate to have a little fresh greenery on the table, I clipped some rosemary from a bush outside our house and used the lemons in our fruit basket to add a little color. I am the farthest thing from a perfectionist in the kitchen. I really have no idea what I am doing… I follow recipes, or skip them all together on some meals, I replace things you aren’t suppose to replace and overcook meat all too often, but I have fun. And that is what this is all about. Chopped and Tossed is here to inspire some fun in your kitchen with the people you love. I’m tired of letting imperfection keep us from celebrating everyday. Rob and I have quickly learned that to have people in our home, whether the food is five star or not is the real gift so we pursue community around the table and hope you will too.

One last final word, my husband is the perfectionist as you can see in the pictures. They are beautiful. We hope you enjoy them, the colors, the contrast, the detail from food to table scape, but don’t let this keep you from making it and having it on a less than “William and Sonoma” style table… the food is just the means to get you to the end. The end, is the what happens once you sit down around the table, the love, joy and togetherness is what it is all about.

Thank you for checking out Chopped & Tossed… please leave comments or share your favorite variations of recipes you find here. We hope you enjoy ‘celebrating every day’ with the people you love!