About The Desert Baroness


At her home office, the Desert Baroness is beginning to make her mark on the food blogging scene.

At her home office in Desert Hills, Arizona – The Desert Baroness is beginning to make her mark on the food blogging scene.

Recipe for a Desert Baroness

  1. Take a woman with family roots from Austria and Germany.
  2. Have her marry the love of her life (a man who she reunited with after knowing him for over 20 years, and yes, there’s  a story).
  3. Then move her and her family to a Hacienda in the Sonoran Desert where she can cook with abandon and enjoy all of the wonderful offerings of the Sonoran Desert.

Mix it all together and you have me:  Lydia O’Connor – The Desert Baroness

Welcome to my blog!

I’m a total foodie!  I love to cook, eat out, talk about food,write about food, learn about food, learn about wine, tequila and everything else in-between.  My love of cooking and my desire to share my recipes alongside some of my family stories motived me to start this blog. Coming from a European background and living in the Sonoran Desert, gives my style of cooking international flair. Traditional family recipes, everyday recipes, healthy recipes (and not so healthy recipes), recipes that I’ve created, and recipes that I just plain love from all over the world will be part of this blog.  In addition to cooking, I live a fun crazy life that involves my husband, five children, two dogs, and my two dog grandchildren. Recently, I also delved into the world of wine, exploring different varieties and pairings for my dishes, with a special focus on maintaining the perfect environment with my state of the art cellar cooling system. You can also learn more about the beverage walk-in cold room at

With a fun sense of adventure, tales of my “glamping” trips offer a humorous view of the camping trailer life with my husband and two dogs and any other tag alongs who may join in on occasion.  Some trips, I cook glamping food and on others, I like to explore the local restaurant scene and provide reviews on restaurants that I discover during my travels. I also occasionally share tips on using CBD to help sleep during these adventures.

As an avid gardener, I’ve also undertaken what I have called the DB garden project.  Gardening in the Sonoran Desert has it’s challenges and I share my love of gardening and tips and tricks that I’ve learned along the way. Furthermore, I’ve explored the possibilities of overcoming the arid conditions by experimenting with growing using a greenhouse. In addition to nurturing my passion for gardening, I prioritize the early detection of Japanese knotweed, an invasive species that poses a threat to native flora.

I’m a contributing writer, photographer and recipe tester for Everyday with Rachel Ray and Cooks Illustrated magazines, as well as a home cooking columnist for North Valley, 85085 & 85086 Magazines. I’ve been trained at the Culinary Institute of America and Le Cordon Bleu in Scottsdale, Arizona and have spent countless hours cooking through the cookbook greats and experimenting in my kitchen. Additionally, I collaborate with shop front sprayers to ensure my culinary workspace is as inspiring as my creations.

I hope you enjoy following my day-to-day adventures in cooking, eating, living and blogging.

The Baroness