Newlywed Pens Starter Cookbook

Jaclyn Douma did something lots of people dream of doing but never do: she published a cookbook.

It isn’t fancy or filled with page-after-page of glorious food close-ups (although there is a small section at the beginning with 28 professional photos of some of the dishes).

Instead, the book is filled with simple, easy to read and understand recipes. These aren’t the kind of dishes I would cook, but darn if I’m not smitten with this book and the way Douma put it together.

Our First Year is a compilation of recipes (84 in all) Douma developed during her first year of marriage. She figured there were other newlyweds who didn’t know where to begin in the kitchen, so she drew them a map from here to there, beginning with a pantry list and section called “Bits of Advice.”

She put together 13 party ideas and gives tips on how to execute them. There’s a section on menus, too, so the new bride knows how to put a meal together, and just in case there’s a question about an ingredient or cooking technique, she penned a basic glossary.

Snuggle Pigs

Makes 40 wieners

1 (14-oz.) package cocktail wieners/little sausage smokies
1 1/2 cups brown sugar (loosely packed)
10 strips of bacon

Preheat oven: 400° F. Place sausages in a bowl so they are easier to handle. Cut uncooked bacon into 4 sections and wrap each wiener with bacon, securing with a toothpick. Place wrapped wieners in a 9″ X 9″ casserole dish and cover with brown sugar. Make sure you cannot see any wieners. Then cover with aluminum foil and bake at 400 ºF for 18 to 20 minutes covered and an additional 15 minutes uncovered or until brown sugar has turned into a liquid.

Just a little Secret

No need to keep these babies warm. Snuggle Pigs are great at room temperature as well.

Jaclyn Douma’s website: and blog: 

4 replies
  1. Adrianna
    Adrianna says:

    I have this cookbook and love it! I’m glad she doesn’t make everything from scratch. Being a busy mom (who honestly doesn’t *love* cooking), having recipes that include refrigerated biscuits or canned soup make my life so much easier.

  2. Tony
    Tony says:

    This cookbook is great, with the kids out of the house it comes in very handy for my wife and I. We look forward to cooking meals at home again.


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