Yummy in the Tummy Bites

Yummy in the Tummy Bites

Yummy in the Tummy Bites
Chocolate Nutty Noodles Candy

Trina DiGiulio

PLAN AHEAD ~ Allow 15 minutes prep, 2 hours to cool

Ingredients – Makes 3 Dozen Pieces
12 ounces semi sweet dark chocolate chips
12ounces white chocolate chips
8 ounces chow mein noodles
8 ounces slivered almonds

Melt chips in a double boiler until smooth. Add noodles and almonds. Cover bottom of cookie sheet with wax paper. To form candy bites, drop mixture by the teaspoon onto wax paper. Cool in refrigerator for several hours and then serve or store in container for later use.

Wishing you the best,

Body Best


December recipe: Christmas wreath cake

Wreath cake

Wreath cake

Christmas Wreath Cake

Carol DiGiulio

This wreath cake is so pretty at Christmas and makes a festive, delicious presentation at parties! 

1 box yellow cake mix – plus ingredients for yellow cake mentioned in the recipe on the box
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
1 can cherry pie filling

Ingredients (cream cheese frosting)
8 ounces unsalted butter, softened
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract


  1. Bake a large (10″) round, single layer cake according to the instructions on the cake mix box.
  2. Use a large cookie cutter to cut a hole in the center of the cake for the wreath shape.
  3. Make cream cheese frosting. Beat together butter and cream cheese in a large bowl using an electric mixer. With the mixer on low speed, add the powdered sugar one cup at a time until smooth and creamy. Add the vanilla extract and beat until mixed.
  4. Frost the cake with cream cheese frosting.
  5. Make extra frosting and tint it green with a few drops of green food coloring.
  6. Pipe green frosting high in two rows around the outer and inner circumference using a pastry bag with a specialty decorating tip (like Wilton 105).
  7. Mix 1 teaspoon of almond extract into the cherry pie filling to increase the taste.
  8. Spread the can of cherry pie filling evenly between the two piped icing portions.
  9. Bake at 350⁰ for about 30 minutes.

Wishing you a Merry Christmas,

Body Best

November recipe: Chicken zucchini casserole

Zucchini casserole

Zucchini casserole

Chicken Zucchini Casserole

Carol DiGiulio

This chicken zucchini casserole just tastes like Thanksgiving. It’s fast, easy, and delicious!

1 package (6 ounces) stuffing mix
¾ cup butter, melted
2 cups cooked chicken
2 cups cubed zucchini
½ cup chopped onion (sautéed)
2 cans cream of chicken soup

6 servings


  1. Microwave cubed zucchini for 2 minutes to soften.
  2. Combine stuffing mix with butter (reserve ½ cup of stuffing and butter mix for top of casserole)
  3. Add zucchini, chicken, cream of chicken soup, and onions to stuffing mix.
  4. Transfer to a 2-quart baking dish.
  5. Top with reserve stuffing and butter mix.
  6. Bake uncovered at 350 º for 40-45 minutes.
  7. Serve with cranberry sauce.

All of us at Body Best hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving with friends and family! Remember that you can always contact us with any vehicle questions or problems as you head out for the holidays.

3 Amazing 4th of July Celebrations in Sonoma

Sonoma fireworks

Sonoma fireworks

4th of July may fall on a Thursday this year, but you can still have a grand old time, whether you prefer to celebrate the 4th at full timbre or prefer a more sophisticated approach. Wine country offers a picturesque setting for festivities that include music, delicious grub, fireworks, and—of course—wine.

We’ve compiled a top 3 list of your best bets for the 4th. Remember to be safe and alert when you’re out on the road, and to always have a designated driver!

If you’re planning to celebrate your Independence Day in Sonoma, visit http://www.sonomacounty.com/ to plot out your day.

Santa Rosa Fireworks Celebration

Santa Rosa Fireworks Celebration

Event: Red, White & Boom! 2013
Santa Rosa Fireworks Celebration
Date: July 4th; 3:30 PM
Location: Sonoma County Fairgrounds Carnival Area Lawn
1350 Bennett Valley Road
Admission: Adults – $7 / Kids 5-12 – $3 / 4 & under – Free / Parking – $5

The quintessential 4th of July bash, Red, White & Boom! is a family-oriented event with activities to keep your little munchkins busy while providing live, local music to keep parents equally entertained. Gates open at 3:30 PM and music begins at 4 PM. You can get your fill of holiday nostalgia by treating your kids to the jumpy houses, watermelon-eating contest, and face painters on standby.

Fuel up throughout the day with food from local vendors, then kick back on your lawn chair and enjoy fireworks at 9:30 PM. Another reason to go? Proceeds benefit the Children’s Museum of Sonoma County and local underprivileged youth.

July 4 Mastercard Performance Series

July 4 Mastercard Performance Series

Event: Mastercard Performance Series – July 4th Celebration
Date: July 4th; 7:30 PM
Location: Green Music Center – Weill Hall
1801 East Cotati Avenue
Rohnert Park
Admission: $45-$85 Inside prices / $25-$45 Outside prices

Let’s face it: fireworks are pretty amazing when you’re a kid. But after, say, the 32nd time of seeing them on 4th of July they can start to lose their luster. Change the tune (quite literally) of your celebrations by attending Green Music Center’s July 4th Celebration, part of the Mastercard Performance Series.

World-renowned instrumental, classical, vocal, and jazz artists gather together for a night of patriotic music topped off with a fireworks show. The program starts with a performance by the Santa Rosa Symphony. Other talents include Principal Pops Conductor Michael Berkowitz and famed Broadway vocalists Doug LaBrecque and Lisa Vroman.

The Depot Hotel Restaurant in Sonoma

The Depot Hotel Restaurant in Sonoma

4th of July Buffet Dinner & Fireworks Party
Date: July 4th; 7-11 PM
Location: Depot Hotel
241 First Street West
Admission: $75 for adults with dinner, wines, tax, and tip included http://www.sonomavalley.com/sonoma-valley-event-calendar.html?event_id=370

Beat the massive crowds and parking madness by watching the Sonoma Fireworks Show from the tranquil Italian garden inside the Depot Hotel Restaurant. The beautiful stone building was built in 1870 and originally served as a hotel for travelers arriving on the train from San Francisco.

Wine lovers will be glad to know the Depot Hotel Restaurant received the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence. The food and ambience are also top-notch – just ask OpenTable, which proclaimed the restaurant their Diner’s Choice winner and Best Outdoor Seating winner.

Body Best Tip: Find a complete list of what’s happening on Independence Day in Sonoma and surrounding communities at the Sonoma Uncorked website (http://www.sonomauncorked.com/wine-country-events/articles/4th-of-july-fireworks-in-sonoma-county/).

June recipe: Lemon bars with shortbread crust

Remember when you were a kid and lemonade stands would pop up in droves during the summer? Whether kids pitch lemonade stands out of boredom or bold entrepreneurial spirit, they’re harnessing the zesty power of one of summer’s most beloved fruits – something you will do in this recipe as well.

Lemons are harvested year round and peak season runs through the winter months, but there’s no time like summer to enjoy the bright, acidic flavor they add to any dish.

In this recipe for lemon bars, the fresh lemon juice and lemon zest add a complementary kick to the rich, buttery crust.


Lemon bars with shortbread crust recipe

Lemon bars with shortbread crust recipe

Lemon Juice in a Buttery Bar

Lemon Bars with Shortbread Crust

Carol DiGiulio

PLAN AHEAD: Allow 30 minutes to prep crust and filling, 20 minutes to bake bars, and 20 minutes to cool

4-6 servings

1 ¼ cup all-purpose unbleached white flour
1 cube unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup powder sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt, sea or kosher

1 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons lemon zest
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (wash a lemon, cut it in half, then squeeze it in the palm of hand, cup side up)
1/2 cup all-purpose unbleached white flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt, sea or kosher
4 large eggs


Powdered sugar for dusting on top of cooled bars

Preheat oven to 350º F.

Bottom Crust
Place oven rack in the middle. Soften butter at room temperature, not in microwave. In a bowl, combine flour, powdered sugar, and butter. Stir with fork until mixed. With baking spray, lightly spray a 9-inch square baking pan. Using your hands, press mixture into pan with a ½-inch edge to crust. Bake crust 15-20 minutes and remove from oven.

Lemon Filling
While pie crust is baking, make filling. In an electric mixer bowl, add eggs, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, flour, baking powder, and salt. Beat on high speed for about 3 minutes or until light and fluffy. Pour mixture over hot crust and return to oven.

Bake another 20 minutes or until firm to touch. Cool and dust with powdered sugar. Cut into desired squares and plate.

Body Best Tip: Looking to incorporate this recipe into a full-fledged summer meal? Then round off your meal with our recipe for a delicious and healthy Italian salad with red wine vinaigrette that you make yourself.

For more about Body Best Collision Center, check out our website.

Body Best is proud to sponsor 3M Hire Our Heroes

3M Hire Our Heroes

Our 3M Hire Our Heroes plaque

A few days ago it was Memorial Day, a day when we honor the brave men and women who have fought and given their lives so we can live in peace.

With several staff members who are war veterans, we have a special place in our hearts for the holiday.

In an effort to give back to those serving our country, we are sponsoring the 3M Hire Our Heroes campaign. For the campaign, 3M has partnered with the Collision Repair Education Foundation to fund scholarships for veterans and their families. The goal is to open up opportunities in the collision repair industry to returning veterans.


Here is a snippet from the 3M Hire Our Heroes press release:

This program will provide funding for education of the nation’s returning veterans and their families through the Collision Repair Education Foundation. The grants and scholarships will help cover tuition, books and classroom materials, and tools and equipment for returning veterans and their families. Veterans and their immediate families will be able to apply for 3M Hire Our Heroes grants and scholarships beginning January 1, 2013, through www.CollisionEducationFoundation.org.

“The Collision Repair Education Foundation does an excellent job of identifying great candidates for scholarship assistance and promoting high-quality education for collision repair professionals at schools throughout the country,” said [Dale] Ross [U.S. Marketing Operations Manager for 3M Automotive Aftermarket Division]. “We’re proud to work with them to support training for these deserving veterans and their family members.

The 3M Hire Our Heroes program also will help fund rehabilitation for the wounded veterans through Operation Comfort and the National Auto Body Council as part of a unique automotive skill-based rehabilitation program. Called Automotivation, it provides opportunities for wounded soldiers to channel their automotive skills – or learn new ones – to restore vehicles through the NABC Recycled Rides program for other military veterans. The campaign will be raising funds for their new facility in San Antonio, Texas.

“These men and women will receive instruction in collision repair, estimating, vehicle refinishing and other related topics toward the goal of preparing them for reentry into the civilian workforce, namely our industry,” said NABC Executive Director Chuck Sulkala.

“Our wounded heroes have tremendous needs for rehabilitation, not just in our military hospitals but in skills-based rehabilitation that provides intellectual, hands-on opportunities and rewarding projects as they recover from their injuries,” noted Ross.

The ultimate goal of the 3M Hire Our Heroes campaign is to support the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in raising awareness for hiring America’s heroes and help drive employment in the collision repair industry for these deserving veterans and their families. In addition, 3M is a national board member of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Hiring Heroes program.

Body Best has helped 3M’s honorable mission by purchasing 3M products in bulk for the shop.

If you are a veteran or the immediate family member of a veteran, you can apply for 3M Hire Our Heroes scholarships and grants on www.CollisionEducationFoundation.org.

More info on the 3M Hire Our Heroes campaign is on 3M’s website.

Visit our website at BodyBestofSonoma.com.

May recipe: Romance your romaine salad with red wine vinaigrette

Salads get such a bad rap – at least where your taste buds are concerned. But eating a salad can be a healthy and indulgent experience if you know what to toss in.

This rich salad – a recipe created by my mother, who is an amazing cook – features avocado and blue cheese for delicious protein, and lots of veggies for more than your daily fill of fiber.

Break this recipe out for the many outdoor picnics you’re sure to have in the coming summer months.

P.S. For more info on Body Best of Sonoma Collision Center, visit the Body Best website. And if you’re planning to really take advantage of your summer break and go on our road trip, check out our post on how to prep your car for summer.


Dino and the team at Body Best of Sonoma

Romaine salad with red wine vinaigrette
Romaine salad with red wine vinaigrette

Romance Your Romaine

Big Green Italian Style Salad with Red Wine Vinaigrette

Carol DiGiulio

Enjoying a big green salad with our evening meal five to six days a week is a Minelli and DiGiulio multi-generational family tradition. There are 3 ways to make dressing: directly on the greens, in the bottom of a salad bowl, or in a jar. My mother, Helene, liked the look and feel of making it directly on the greens and her family continued the tradition. You will get the look and feel of oil and vinegar dressing after making it a few times. Don’t give up. Be adventurous!

PLAN AHEAD: Allow 10 minutes to prep and dress the salad.

Ingredients (serves 4-6)
2 heads organic romaine, torn or cut into bite-sized pieces
2-3 tomatoes, chopped into small chunks
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 cucumber, peeled and chopped
1 avocado, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese or gorgonzola cheese
Red wine vinaigrette (bold red wine vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper)


  1. Wash lettuce (spin or pat dry), tear or cut leaves into bite-sized pieces, and throw into salad bowl.
  2. Add all other salad ingredients to the bowl.
  3. Drizzle extra virgin olive oil and then red wine vinegar around the salad, circling the bowl a few times until it looks and feels like you have enough for lettuce in the bowl.
  4. Add seasonings and toss just enough to distribute evenly.
  5. Taste, and adjust seasonings, oil, and vinegar as needed.