frederick maryland personal chef chris spear

Modern Recipes for Dinner

If you’re like me, you’re probably always looking for easy, delicious recipes that also won’t break the bank. This week I’ve collected some of my favorites. A few of them come from chef Christine Flynn who was recently on my podcast. Her cookbook A Generous Meal has become a favorite in my house. I’ve also linked to some of my favorite kitchen tools, cookbooks and ingredients.

I recently spent a day shooting new photos and videos for my website and social media. I can’t wait to share them with you. I’ll also be sharing some of those recipes. Of course, if you’d rather just have me cook for you, you can book a Perfect Little Bites dinner. While August and September are filling up, there are still some dates available. Because Summer really is my favorite time of the year to cook, and I want to cook for as many of you as possible, I’d love to fill my calendar. So, if you book a dinner by Saturday August 5th, I’ll throw in a bonus course with your next dinner. You don’t have to have the party by 8/5, just book by then.


Red Pepper and Walnut Muhammara Dip. The next hummusOne of my favorite starters to make for a dinner party is Muhammara. It’s a roasted red pepper and walnut spread. Sometimes, I like to switch up the nuts, and find that cashews are a nice change.

With all the good, fresh vegetables right now, I’ve been eating a lot of salad and crudité. This homemade Buttermilk Dressing is the perfect accompaniment.

Lemony Spaghetti Squash with Burrata and Herbs

Tomato Roasted Salmon

Earl Grey Cake with Fresh Raspberry Whipped Cream


The Chefs Without Restaurants Podcast

chef christine flynn

Elevated Home Cooking: Approachable and Affordable Recipes with Chef Christine Flynn

As many of you know, besides the personal chef business, I also host the Chefs Without Restaurants podcast. On the show, I speak with culinary entrepreneurs, and people working in the food and beverage industry outside of a traditional restaurant setting.

I recently spoke with Christine Flynn, the proprietor of The Good Earth Winery, partner at The Good Earth Farm in Ontario, Canada, and executive chef and partner at iQ Food Co. A few months ago, she released her second cookbook, “A Generous Meal.”

We talk about her culinary background, including her early love of food and cooking, and how her parents’ three-bite rule helped her develop her palate. We discuss her cooking style, which she describes as elevated home cooking that is both approachable and affordable. Christine believes that everyone deserves to eat beautiful food, and the recipes in her book are both flavor-packed and easy to execute.

She discusses her love for creating a beautiful life and how making food and clothes are part of that. Flynn finds inspiration from design, cozy aesthetics, places she’s been, music, and art. Christine discusses her approach to sustainability and cooking. Her expertise in using leftovers to create different meals is something she takes pride in and wants to teach others to do. She emphasizes that her approach is all about having fun and being creative.

Christine was also behind the viral Instagram account Jacques La Merde in 2015 & 2016. Jacques was known for his overly-worked and tweezered creations. They were elaborated interpretations of junk food. Think…the Michelin version of a Big Mac. While she had fun with it, she’s left her Jacques days behind her, focusing more on family cooking these days.

Video of the Week


Below, you can find products from brands that I use and love. When you purchase things through these links, I earn a commission.

lodge cast iron skilletI’m a big fan of cooking in a cast iron skillet. If you don’t want to go to the trouble of trying to find a used one, and tackling the re-seasoning process, I recommend picking up this one from Lodge. I’ve purchased a number of their pans and griddles over the years.

It’s ridiculous how much I use my salad spinner. Not just for salad, i put most of my produce in in. From soaking my strawberries, to taking the pungency out of my onions, this does the trick. But I also drain and spin my potatoes and spätzle, after boiling but before pan-frying. You definitely don’t want to throw wet ingredients into hot oil.

Emmanuel Laroche recently wrote a book called Conversations Behind the Kitchen Door: 50 American Chefs Chart Today’s Food Culture. I’m proud to say that I’m one of the 50 chefs featured in the book. You can pick up either a hard copy or Kindle version on Amazon.

Without a doubt, my favorite spice blend right now is Spiceology’s Candied Bacon Sriracha Spice. It’s like smoked paprika with a kick. Also, there’s no actual meat in it, so it’s great in vegetarian dishes.

Chef Chris SpearHow to Contact Me and Book a Dinner

If you like what you see, please consider hiring me for an in-home dinner or cooking lesson. I run a personal chef business that services a 70-mile radius from Frederick, MD. That includes Washington D.C, Baltimore, Northern Virginia, southern Pennsylvania, and Eastern West Virginia. Get more information here. Thank you.

You can also find me on Facebook, Instagram (photos and Threads), TwitterTikTokYouTube and on the Chefs Without Restaurants podcast.