Windy City Nehrt’s

Recipe Book

 

 

12/25/2010

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Flip, Shelley, Ashley and Geneviève hope you enjoy each of these recipes as much as we do.  We have tried all of these recipes, some of them may, many times, and quite a few of them are our favorites.

 

Some seem very simple, but consider them our comfort foods, those that can be fixed easily, but always taste good.  Others are a bit more complex, but are worth it; otherwise we would not have included them.

 

Live, love and eat well!

 

 

 


Table of Contents

 

Breakfast 13

Baked Eggs and Mushrooms in Ham Crisps. 13

Banana-Blueberry Cornmeal Muffins. 14

Banana-Stuffed French Toast 15

Breakfast Casserole. 16

Carrot-Zucchini Yogurt Muffins. 17

Challah French Toast 18

Cinnamon Rolls With Pecans. 19

Eggs Benedict 20

Hash Brown Quiche. 21

Kicked Up French Toast 22

Maple Pecan Bacon. 23

Mexican Omelet 24

Orange Bread. 25

Panettone French Toast With Rum.. 26

Peanut Butter and Banana Stuffed French Toast 27

San Diegan Omelet 28

Soft Scrambled Eggs with Fresh Ricotta and Chives. 29

Sticky Bacon Bread. 30

Sticky Cinnamon Rolls. 31

Sticky Pecan Rolls. 32

Ultimate Coffee Cake (Paula Deen) 34

Ultimate Sticky Buns. 35

Zesty Orange Cinnamon Rolls. 37

Appetizers. 38

Arancini di Riso. 38

Artichoke Bottoms With Bay Scallops. 39

Assorted Tea Sandwiches. 40

Baked Goat Cheese with Caramelized Onion, Garlic and Mission Figs. 41

Baked Jalapeno Poppers. 42

Benne Seed Pita Toasts. 43

Blood Oranges with Rosemary Honey. 44

Bourbon Chicken Liver Pâté. 45

Bourbon-Marinated Buffalo Chicken Strips. 46

Buffalo Wings. 47

Clam Dip (Nana Lambert’s) 48

Coconut-Beer Battered Shrimp with Multiple Dips. 49

Crab Cakes with Grainy Mustard and Scallion Sauces. 52

Crabmeat-Stuffed Shrimp. 54

Crispy Butternut Wontons with Spicy Tomato Sauce. 56

Deviled Eggs. 58

Fresh Figs with Bacon and Goat Cheese. 59

Fried Calamari with Spicy Anchovy Mayonnaise. 60

Gloria Dorson's Marinated Shrimp. 61

Grilled Lemon Prawns with Béarnaise Sauce. 62

Ham and Gruyere Thumbprints. 63

Hot Crab And Artichoke Dip. 64

Hot Spinach and Artichoke Dip. 65

Hummus. 66

Layered Caviar Spread. 67

Layered Nacho Bean Dip. 68

Melon and Proscuitto. 69

Mini Asian Crab Cakes. 70

Mini Chicken B’Steeyas. 71

Mushroom Croissant 73

Oven Baked Pecan-Crusted Chicken Fingers. 74

Pan-Seared Diver's Scallops with Roasted Red Pepper Paint and Basil Oil 75

Prosciutto Purses. 77

Rumaki 78

Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms. 79

Sesame Chicken Satay. 80

South of the Border Roll-ups. 81

Spinach Parmesan Balls. 82

Toasts with Fresh Figs, Goat Cheese, and Pomegranate Molasses. 83

Tomato and Mozzarella. 84

Tomato and Mozzarella Bruschetta. 85

Venetian Shrimp and Scallops. 86

Warm Brie with Fugi Apple, Pear and Melba Toasts. 87

West Town Tavern Potato Chips. 88

Wrapped Figs With Camembert 89

Soups, Salads and Chili Dishes. 90

Andouille and Chicken Jambalaya. 90

Ardith’s Turkey Chili 91

Asian Pear Salad. 92

Baked Potato Soup. 93

Beck’s Salad. 94

Black Bean Soup with Cumin. 95

Black-Eyed Pea Jambalaya. 96

Broccoli, Red Pepper, And Cheddar Chowder 97

Butternut Squash Soup with Hazelnut Cream.. 98

Caesar Salad. 99

Cajun Gumbo. 100

Chicken and Andouille Smoked Sausage Gumbo (Creole Stew) 101

Chunky Potato Soup. 102

Corn and Crab Chowder 103

Crab Chowder 104

Crawfish Etouffee. 105

Crunch Salad. 106

Gumbo Ya Ya. 107

Hattie's Creole Jambalaya. 108

Jambalaya. 109

Jerusalem Artichoke Soup with Lemon And Saffron. 110

Legendary Jambalaya. 111

Potato Leek Soup. 112

Roasted Corn Chowder 113

Smoky Clam Chowder 114

Sweet Potato Bisque with Lemon and Ricotta Cream Seville Orange Gelee. 115

The Tombs Gumbo. 116

The Ultimate Chili 117

Sandwiches and Snacks. 118

Black Russian Sandwich. 118

Cuban Sandwich. 119

Grilled Ham and Cheese Sandwich. 121

Inside-Out Bacon Cheeseburgers with Grilled Green Onion Mayo. 122

Monte Cristo Sandwich. 123

New York-Style Philly Cheese Steak. 124

Texas BBQ Pulled Pork and Coca Cola BBQ Sauce. 125

Main Dishes. 126

Barbecued Beef Brisket (Lee Agee's) 126

Beef Tenderloin Steaks On Potato Galettes With Mustard Sauce. 127

Beef Tenderloin Steaks with Gorgonzola. 128

Beef Tenderloin Steaks With Port-Rosemary Sauce. 129

Beef Tenderloin Steaks With Smoky Bacon-Bourbon Sauce. 130

Beef Tenderloin with a Dark Ale and Mushroom Sauce. 131

Beef Tenderloin With Roasted Shallots, Bacon And Port 132

Beef Tournedos with Blue Cheese Mashed Potatoes. 133

Blue Cheese Stuffed Filets with Bacon Mashed Potatoes. 135

Boeuf Bourguignon a La Julia Child. 136

Bourbon Beef Tenderloin. 139

Bulgogi 140

Cashew Bake Casserole. 141

Chuck Wagon Cheeseburger Skillet 142

Down-home Barbecue Beef Short Ribs. 143

Drunk'n Steak. 144

Fancier Hobo Hamburgers. 145

Filet Mignon with Mushrooms and Sauce Pinot Noir 146

Fire Roasted Beef Tenderloin with Madeira Mustard Sauce and Wasabi Mashed Potatoes  147

Grilled Peppered Beef Tenderloin with a Morel, Cabernet, and Toasted Garlic Sauce, served with Whipped Yukon Golds. 149

Grilled Pepper Crusted T-Bone Steaks with Worcestershire-Chive Butter 150

Herb- And Spice-Roasted Beef Tenderloin With Red Wine-Shallot Sauce. 151

Hobos, or Foil Dinners. 153

Marinated and Grilled London Broil with Steak Sauce. 154

New York Strip Steak with Cognac Butter and Portobello Mushroom Ragout 155

Pan Seared Rib-Eye Steaks with Cowboy Coffee Pan Blend. 156

Pan Seared Steaks with Herb Sauce. 157

Pancetta-Studded Beef Tenderloin. 158

Pepper-crusted Filet Mignon With Port-Cherry Reduction. 159

Red and Black Pepper Crusted Filet Mignon with Honey-Mustard, Horseradish, Mint Sauce  160

Roasted Beef Tenderloin with Merlot Shallot Sauce. 161

Roasted Fillet of Beef rolled in Herbs and Porcini and Wrapped in Prosciutto. 162

Rum-Black Pepper Glazed Filet Mignon. 163

Shepherd's Pie. 164

Steak au Poivre. 165

Steak with Shallots and Lyonnaise Potatoes. 166

The Ultimate Beef Stew.. 167

Tournedos of Beef in Mushroom, Mustard and Red Wine Sauce with Caramelized Onion-Potato Gratin  169

West Town Tavern Pot Roast with Black Vinegar Sauce. 171

Main Dishes - Pork. 172

Crunchy Pork Chops. 172

Homemade Schnitzel 173

Honey-Bourbon Grilled Pork Tenderloin. 174

Pork Medallions With Port Sauce. 175

Pork au Poivre. 176

Pork Piccata. 177

Pork Tenderloin Stuffed with Prosciutto & Dried Fruit with Port Wine Sauce. 178

Pork Tenderloin with Savory Cherry Port Sauce. 180

Pork Wellington. 181

The Nightgown. 182

Sage Veal Chops. 183

Saltimbocca Alla Romana. 184

San Francisco Pork Chops. 185

Spicy Cherry Ribs. 186

Vanilla and Bourbon Marinated Pork Loin. 187

Veal Baci 188

Veal Milanese. 189

Veal Rolls Stuffed with Prosciutto and Cheese. 190

Veal Rolls with Pancetta. 191

Veal Scaloppini with Madeira and Porcini Mushrooms. 192

Veal Tournedos In Cream Sauce (Veau A La Crème) 193

Who Loves Ya Baby-Back Ribs?. 194

Main Dishes - Poultry. 196

Bacon Breasts. 196

Bacon-Wrapped Cornish Hens With Raspberry Balsamic Glaze. 197

Caramelized Maui Onion and Barbeque Duck Quesadillas. 198

Champagne Chicken. 199

Chicken and Sweet-Potato Croquettes. 200

Chicken Breasts Stuffed with Truffle Butter 201

Chicken Breast With Sage & Nutmeg. 203

Chicken Breast with Sage and Prosciutto. 204

Chicken Cordon Bleu. 205

Chicken Cutlets with Artichokes, Tomato, and Mozzarella. 206

Chicken Diablo. 207

Chicken Enchiladas. 208

Chicken Etouffee. 209

Chicken Francesa. 210

Chicken, Ham and Smoked Sausage Gumbo. 211

Chicken, Shrimp and Andouille Gumbo. 213

Chicken Piccata. 215

Chicken Piccata with Mushroom and Artichoke Hearts. 216

Chicken Saltimbocca. 217

Chicken Saltimbocca Marsala. 218

Chicken with Mustard Cream Sauce. 220

Coffee Brined Chicken Breasts. 221

Dijon-Baked Chicken with Rice and Broccoli 222

Dirty Bird. 223

Garlic Parmesan Chicken. 224

Grilled Chicken Breasts Stuffed with Ham and Saga Blue. 225

Oven Fried Chicken. 226

Oven-Roasted Chicken with Garlic Rosemary Smear 227

Pan-fried Chicken Breasts With Oregano Garlic Butter 228

Pastilla - Moroccan Pigeon Pie. 229

Perfect Roast Chicken. 231

Poulet de Normandie. 232

Rolled Stuffed Chicken with Hot Pepper Sauce. 233

Saltimbocca di Pollo. 235

Shiitake-Crusted Chicken with Creamed Mushrooms. 236

Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Artichoke Hearts and Goat Cheese. 238

Tequila Chicken Quesadillas. 239

Vermont Chicken Pie. 240

Main Dishes - Seafood. 241

Andouille Crusted Scallops With Creole Mustard Sauce. 241

Bacon-Wrapped Trout with Rosemary. 242

Broiled Salmon with Miso Glaze. 243

Butterflied Trout in Lemon Caper Butter 244

Crispy Sea Bass with Confit of Yukon Gold Potatoes, Pancetta and Fresh Sweet Peas  245

Fish and Chips. 246

Fish Fillets in Parchment with Asparagus and Orange. 247

Grilled Lemon Prawns with Béarnaise Sauce. 248

Grilled New Orleans-Style Shrimp. 249

Honey and Soy Glazed Salmon. 250

Macadamia Nut Crusted Mahi-mahi 251

Mediterranean Swordfish Wrapped in Prosciutto. 252

New Orleans Crab-cakes. 253

Pistachio-Crusted Cod Fillets. 255

Potato-Crusted Salmon with Chives and Scallion Sauce. 256

Potato-Crusted Snapper 257

Prosciutto Wrapped Halibut with a Caper and Tomato Butter Sauce. 258

Roasted Slashed Fillet of Sea Bass Stuffed with Herbs, Baked on Mushroom Potatoes with Salsa Verde -- a la Tony Blair 259

Salmon Glazed with Honey and Mustard. 261

Salmon with Brown Sugar and Mustard Glaze. 262

Salmon with Fennel 263

Sea Bass with Lemon and Caper Sauce. 264

Seared Salmon with Balsamic Glaze. 265

Skate Wings with Grenoble Sauce. 266

Skate with Garlic Buerre Blanc and Balsamic Glaze. 267

Skate with Shrimp and Artichoke Vinaigrette. 268

The Ultimate Crab Cakes with Remoulade. 269

Ultimate Paella. 271

Who Put the Yummy Fat on my Chilean Sea Bass?. 272

Main Dishes – Pizza and Pasta. 273

Pizza Crust 274

Pizza Sauce. 274

Pizza Toppings, and Putting it all Together 276

Baked Ziti 278

Cajun Jambalaya Pasta. 279

Dirty Black Eyed Peas. 281

Hilda McKibbon’s Lasagna. 282

Louisiana Red Beans and Rice. 283

Manicotti 284

Pasta with Dino's Marinara Sauce. 286

Penne Alla Vodka. 287

Penne with Tomato, Bacon And Cheese Sauce. 289

Provencal Oven-Roasted Tomato Sauce. 290

Roasted Garlic. 291

Smoked Sausage and Black-Eyed Peas. 292

Spaghetti alla Carbonara. 293

Spaghetti with Olives and Tomato Sauce. 294

Spicy Sausage and Gorgonzola Pizza. 295

Tagliatelle Bolognese. 296

Tricolor Boboli Pizzas. 297

"Two Thumbs Up" Pizza (with Caramelized Onions and Gorgonzola Cheese) 298

Wild Mushroom Pizza with Garlic Confit and Bacon. 299

Vegetables and Side Dishes. 300

Artichoke and Mushroom Frittata. 300

Artichoke Fritters. 301

Artichokes Roman Style: Carciofi alla Romana. 302

Artichokes Stuffed with Smashed Potatoes and Browned Garlic. 303

Baked Artichoke Hearts. 304

Bacon Potatoes Au Gratin. 305

Baked Jerusalem Artichokes with Bread Crumbs, Thyme & Lemon. 306

Baked Half-Naked Red/Golden Potatoes. 307

Baked Smashed Red/Golden Potatoes. 308

Beg for More Divine Potato Purses. 309

BLT Mashed Potatoes. 310

Boiled and Popped Yukon Gold Potatoes – Jacques Pepin. 311

Bombay Potatoes. 312

Bourbon Pecan Smashed Sweet Potatoes. 313

Butternut Squash Soufflé. 314

Butternut Squash with Brown Butter 315

Cajun Oven Fries. 316

Carrots And Brown Sugar 317

Carrots Braised in Marsala Wine. 318

Cauliflower and Parsnip Hash Browns. 319

Confit Onion and Black Mission Fig Tart 320

Cranberries with Apricot 321

Cuban Grilled Corn on the Cob with Queso Blanco and Lime. 322

Deep-Fried Baby Artichokes. 323

Fried Okra. 324

Garlic Mashed Potatoes. 325

Green Bean Casserole. 326

Green Bean and Corn Casserole (Kristen’s) 327

Green Beans And Bacon. 328

Green Beans with Pancetta, Garlic & Herbs. 329

Herb-Encased Potato Crisps. 330

Honey-Glazed Baby Carrots. 331

Jerusalem Artichokes and Potato au Gratin. 332

Leek and Potato Gratin. 333

Macaroni and Cheese with Buttery Crumbs. 334

Macaroni and Cheese with Lobster 335

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. 335

Add the oil to a large pot of boiling salted water, add the pasta and cook al dente according to the directions on the package. Drain well. 335

Heat the milk in a small saucepan, but don't allow it to boil. In a large pot, melt 6 tablespoons of the butter and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring constantly with a whisk. Still whisking, add the hot milk and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, add the Gruyere, Cheddar, 1 tablespoon salt, the pepper and nutmeg and stir until the cheese melts. Stir in the cooked pasta and lobster. 335

Pile the mixture into 6 to 8 (2-cup) gratin dishes. 335

Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, combine with the bread crumbs and sprinkle on top. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the sauce is bubbly and the pasta is browned on top.Mexican Grilled Corn  335

Okra and Black-Eye Pea Sauté. 337

Oven Baked Thick Chips with Rosemary Salt 338

Oven-Fried Onion Rings. 339

Oven Fries with Herbes de Provence. 340

Pan-Roasted Asparagus with Thyme. 341

Parsnip Pancakes. 342

Piero’s Creamed Corn. 343

Pommes Frites with Parsley Butter 344

Potato Galette. 345

Potato Gratin. 346

Potato, Onion, and Rosemary Cake. 347

Potatoes with Bacon and Onions. 348

Praline Sweet Potatoes (Ardith’s) 349

Rebaked Potatoes. 350

Rice Pilaf. 351

Risotto. 352

Risotto con Funghi 354

Risotto Milanese Style. 355

Risotto with Tomatoes and Basil 356

Risotto with Sun-Dried Tomato. 357

Roasted Garlic and Basil Smashed Potatoes. 358

Roasted Potato Planks with Rosemary & Lemon. 359

Roasted Red Onion with Thyme and Butter 360

Roasted Sesame-and Panko-Coated Asparagus with Soy-Ginger Drizzle. 361

Rosemary Potatoes. 362

Rosti with Bacon, Mushrooms and Onions. 363

Rustic Onion Pie. 364

Sautéed Baby Artichokes. 365

Scalloped Potatoes. 366

Steamed Carrots and Mint 367

Stuffed Potatoes with Ham, Thyme, and Gruyere. 368

Sugar Snap Peas with Onions and Bacon. 369

Thick Cut “O” Rings and Spicy Dipping Sauce. 370

Three Potato Galette. 371

West Town Tavern Caramelized Brussels Sprouts with Black Vinegar Sauce. 372

Wine-Roasted Fingerling Potatoes with Onions and Olives. 373

Yukon Gold Gruyere Galette. 374

Zucchini Pie. 375

Desserts. 376

Ardith Nehrt’s Rhubarb Pie. 376

Baked Pears with Vanilla Mascarpone. 377

Bananas Foster 378

Beth’s Melt-aways. 379

Black-Bottom Chocolate Pie. 380

Boccone Dolce. 381

Boston Chewy Oatmeal Cookies. 382

Bourbon Pecan Pie. 383

Bourbon Sauce For Ice Cream.. 384

Carrot Cake. 385

Champagne Zabaglione With Fresh Fruit Compote. 386

Cheesecake With Apricot Sauce. 387

Cherries Jubilee. 388

Chocolate Beet Cake. 389

Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Cake. 390

Chocolate Caramel Cake with Sea Salt 391

Chocolate Ganache Cake. 393

Chocolate-Macadamia Tart 394

Coconut Lime Sours. 395

Crème Bruleé. 396

Gloria Dorson’s Oatmeal Cookies. 397

A Gooey, Decadent Chocolate Cake. 398

Graham Cracker Crust 400

Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies. 401

Hello Dollys. 402

Individual Strawberry Trifles. 403

Katharine Hepburn’s Brownies. 404

Lemon Bars. 405

Lemon Cornmeal Cookies. 406

Lemon Frosted Angel Food Cake (Ardith’s) 407

Lemon Thyme Wafer Cookies. 408

Lori’s Pumpkin Pie. 409

Mascarpone and Berry Parfaits. 410

Mascarpone Custards with Summer Berries. 411

Mixed Berry Streusel Pie. 412

Mocha Layer Cake With Chocolate-Rum Cream Filling. 413

Molten Chocolate Cakes with Raspberries and Cream.. 415

Poppy Seed Cake. 416

Ruby’s Pumpkin Pie. 417

Short Cake (Shelley’s) 418

Snicker doodles (Andrea Gardner’s) 419

Sour Cream Cheesecake. 420

Strawberry Pie (Ardith’s) 421

Tiramisu. 422

Tiramisu Italiano. 423

Turtle Brownies. 424

Turtle Brownies 2. 426

White Chocolate–Coated Grapes with Orange Curd. 428

Drinks. 429

Bellagio Nog. 429

Blood Orange Bellini 430

Champagne Eye-Opener 431

Frozen Banana Daiquiri 432

Frozen Bellini 433

Hot Buttered Rum.. 434

Kentucky Mule. 435

Kicked Up Bellini Cocktails. 436

Layered Margaritas. 437

Lemon Champagne Freeze. 438

Limoncello. 439

Mead. 440

Mojito and Cranberry Mojito. 441

Raspberry Champagne Cocktail 442

Raspberry Lemonade Punch. 443

Raspberry Royale. 444

Smoking Bishop Mulled Wine. 445

Strawberry, Lime And Champagne Cocktail 446

Watermelon-Basil Margaritas. 447

Watermelon Vodka. 448

Wine & Food – What to Serve?. 449

Martinis, up the Wazoo. 452

Sauces, Rubs and Miscellany. 458

Essence. 458

Jalapeno Corn Bread. 459

Caramelized Onions. 460

Honey Butter 461

Port Wine Sauce. 462

Balsamic Syrup. 463

Balsamic Vinaigrette. 464

Black Vinegar Sauce. 465

Fresh Mayonnaise. 466

Raspberry Vinaigrette. 467

Deviled Eggs (full recipes) 468

 


Breakfast

 

                                          

 

 

Baked Eggs and Mushrooms in Ham Crisps

 

¾         lb         crimini mushrooms, finely chopped

¼         cup      finely chopped shallot

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

½         tsp       salt

¼         tsp       black pepper

2          Tbs      crème fraiche or sour cream

1          Tbs      finely chopped fresh tarragon leaves

12        x          slices Black Forest or Virginia ham (without holes; 10 oz)

12        x          large eggs

Garnish: fresh tarragon leaves

Accompaniment: buttered brioche or challah toast

 

You will need a muffin tin with 12 (1/2-cup) muffin cups

 

Preheat oven to 400 °F.

 

Prepare mushrooms: Cook mushrooms and shallot in butter with salt and pepper in a large heavy skillet over moderately high heat, stirring, until mushrooms are tender and liquid they give off is evaporated, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in crème fraiche and tarragon.

 

Assemble: Fit 1 slice of ham into each of 12 lightly oiled muffin cups (ends will stick up and hang over edges of cups). Divide mushrooms among cups and crack 1 egg into each. Bake in middle of oven until whites are cooked but yolks are still runny, about 15 minutes. Season eggs with salt and pepper and remove (with ham) from muffin cups carefully, using 2 spoons or small spatulas.


Banana-Blueberry Cornmeal Muffins

 

1          x          vegetable-oil cooking spray

½         cup      yellow cornmeal, preferably stone ground

1          tsp       baking powder

½         tsp       baking soda

¼         tsp       salt

1          cup      all-purpose flour, PLUS 2 tsp

1 ½      cups     mashed ripe bananas (about 3 large bananas)

½         cup      low-fat buttermilk

1          Tbs      honey

1          Tbs      fresh lemon juice

1          large    egg

1          tsp       vanilla extract

1          cup      fresh or frozen blueberries

1 ½      tsp       granulated sugar

 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Line a standard (12-cup) muffin tin with paper liners; coat liners with cooking spray.

 

Whisk together cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and 1 cup flour.  In a large bowl, stir together bananas, buttermilk, honey, lemon juice egg and vanilla.  Fold cornmeal mixture into banana mixture just until combined.  Toss blueberries with remaining 2 tsp flour and gently fold into batter.

 

Spoon batter into prepared tin, filling to the brims.  Sprinkle each muffin with sugar.  Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of one comes out clean, about 30 minutes.  Let cool completely in pan on wire rack.  (Muffins can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.)

 

 

 


Banana-Stuffed French Toast

 

Now, if you are like some of us and like peanut butter on your French Toast, let me tell you, peanut butter and bananas are about as good as you can get.

 

1          x          firm, ripe banana

¾         cup      half-and-half

2          x          large eggs

1          tsp       vanilla

¼         tsp       cinnamon

¼         tsp       freshly grated nutmeg

4          x          1-inch thick) slices day-old challah or brioche

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

 

Confectioners' sugar for dusting

Accompaniment: Warm maple syrup

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.

 

Cut banana into 1/4-inch thick slices. In a bowl, whisk together half-and-half, eggs, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Cut bread slices horizontally almost in half, leaving 1 edge intact. Stuff each pocket with 4 to 6 banana slices (do not overstuff). In a baking dish just large enough to hold bread slices in one layer, arrange slices and pour custard over them. Soak slices, turning them over once or twice to allow bread to absorb all liquid, about 15 minutes.

 

In a 12-inch non-stick skillet melt butter over low heat until foam subsides and cook slices until golden, about 5 minutes on each side.

 

Dust French toast with confectioners' sugar and serve with syrup.

 

 


Breakfast Casserole

 

For a crowd, this is a nice, quick and easy breakfast.  This is for 12 people, so adjust accordingly.

 

12        oz        mild bulk sausage

12        oz        hot bulk sausage

10        x          eggs, lightly beaten

1          cup      sour cream

1          x          large onion, chopped

1          x          green pepper, chopped

1          x          red pepper, chopped

1          x          zucchini, chopped

16        oz        mushrooms, sliced

2          cups     shredded Munster, mozzarella or provolone cheese

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F. 

 

Cook sausage. Drain grease and set aside to cool slightly.

 

In a large, deep baking dish, add sausage, eggs, sour cream, onion, peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, and cheese and stir to mix. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden color.

 

 


Carrot-Zucchini Yogurt Muffins

 

Egg whites beaten to stiff peaks ensure that the texture of these whole-grain muffins remains light.  Fresh carrots and zucchini keep these muffins moist.

 

1          x          vegetable-oil cooking spray

¾         cup      whole-wheat flour

½         cup      all-purpose flour

¾         cup      (3 oz) pecans, toasted and finely chopped

¼         cup      toasted wheat germ

½         cup      packed dark-brown sugar

1          tsp       baking powder

¼         tsp       baking soda

¾         tsp       ground cinnamon

½         tsp       salt

2          cups     (s medium) carrots, peeled and grated on the large holes of a box grater

1 ½      cups     (1 large) zucchini, peeled and grated on the large holes of a box grater

½         cup      plain low-fat yogurt

2          large    eggs, separated

2          Tbs      unsulfured molasses

1          tsp       finely grated orange zest

 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Coat a standard (12-cup) muffin tin with cooking spray.  Whisk together flours, pecans, wheat germ, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.

 

Stir together carrots, zucchini, yogurt, egg yolks, molasses and orange zest in a large bowl.  Fold flour mixture into carrot mixture until just combined.  With a whisk or a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg whites until shiny, stiff peaks form.  Gently fold egg whites into the carrot mixture.

 

Spoon batter into prepared tin, filling to the brims.  Bake until a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 25 minutes.  Let cool completely in pan on a wire rack.  (Muffins can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.)

 

 


Challah French Toast

 

6          x          extra-large eggs

1 ½      cups     half-and-half or milk

1          tsp       grated orange zest

½         tsp       pure vanilla extract

1          Tbs      good honey

½         tsp       kosher salt

1          large    loaf challah or brioche bread

Unsalted butter

Vegetable oil

 

To serve:

Pure maple syrup

Good raspberry preserves (optional)

Sifted confectioners' sugar (optional)

 

 

Preheat the oven to 250 °F.

In a large shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs, half-and-half, orange zest, vanilla, honey, and salt. Slice the challah in 3/4-inch thick slices. Soak as many slices in the egg mixture as possible for 5 minutes, turning once.

 

Heat 1 Tbs butter and 1 Tbs oil in a very large Sauté pan over medium heat. Add the soaked bread and cook for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until nicely browned. Place the cooked French toast on a sheet pan and keep it warm in the oven. Fry the remaining soaked bread slices, adding butter and oil as needed, until it's all cooked. Serve hot with maple syrup, raspberry preserves, and/or confectioners' sugar.


Cinnamon Rolls With Pecans

 

1 ½      cups     warm water (105 °F to 115 °F)

¼         cups     sugar

2          env      dry yeast

1          Tbs      vegetable oil

1          tsp       salt

3 ½      cups     (about) all purpose flour

1          cup      (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

2          Tbs      ground cinnamon

1 ½      cups     sugar

1          cup      chopped pecans

1          cup      pecan halves

 

Combine 1 1/2 cups warm water and 1/4 cup sugar in large bowl. Sprinkle yeast over and let stand until foamy, about 6 minutes. Mix in vegetable oil and salt. Add enough flour, 1 cup at a time, to form soft dough. Turn dough out onto floured work surface. Knead dough until smooth and elastic, adding more flour if sticky, about 10 minutes.

 

Lightly oil another large bowl. Place dough in bowl; turn to coat with oil. Cover bowl with plastic wrap, then cover with kitchen towel. Let dough rise in warm draft-free area until doubled in volume, about 1 hour. Beat butter, cinnamon and remaining 1 1/2 cups sugar in medium bowl to blend.

 

Turn dough out onto floured work surface (do not punch down). Roll out or press dough gently to 16x10-inch rectangle. Using spatula, spread 1 cup butter mixture evenly over dough. Sprinkle with chopped pecans. Starting at 1 long side, roll up dough jelly-roll style, forming log. Pinch seam and ends to seal. Cut log crosswise into 12 equal pieces. Spread remaining butter mixture over bottom of 15x10x2-inch metal baking pan. Sprinkle 1 cup pecan halves evenly over butter mixture in pan. Arrange rolls, cut side down, in prepared pan, spacing evenly. Cover pan with plastic wrap. Let rolls rise in warm draft-free area until light and puffed, about 30 minutes.

 

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 325 °F. Bake cinnamon rolls uncovered until tops are golden brown, about 35 minutes.

 

Remove pan from oven. Using sharp knife, cut around sides of pan. Place large baking sheet over pan. Using oven mitts as aid, hold baking sheet and pan together and turn over, releasing cinnamon rolls onto sheet. Serve cinnamon rolls warm or at room temperature.

 

 


Eggs Benedict

 

2          x          English muffins, split, toasted and buttered

4          x          thick slices ham or Canadian bacon, warmed

4          x          poached eggs

½         cup      Hollandaise Sauce

 

Hollandaise Sauce:

3          x          large egg yolks

1 ½      Tbs      cold water

½         cup      warm clarified butter

1-3       tsp       fresh lemon juice

Dash hot red pepper sauce (optional)

Salt and ground white pepper to taste

 

Place in the top of a double boiler or in a large stainless-steel bowl set up as a double boiler. Off the heat, whisk the egg mixture until it becomes light and frothy. Place the top of the double boiler or the bowl over, not in, barely simmering water and continue to whisk until the eggs are thickened, 2 to 4 minutes, being careful not to let the eggs get too hot. Remove the pan or bowl from over the water and whisk to slightly cool the mixture. Whisking constantly, very slowly add butter, then whisk in lemon juice, pepper sauce and salt and pepper. If the sauce is too thick, whisk in a few drops of warm water. Serve immediately or keep the sauce warm for up to 30 minutes by placing the bowl in water (not hot) water.

 

 


Hash Brown Quiche

 

3          cups     shredded frozen hash browns, thawed and drained
4          Tbs      (1/2 stick) butter, melted
3          large    eggs, beaten
1          cup      half-and-half
3/4       cup      diced cooked ham
1/2       cup      diced green onions
1          cup      shredded Cheddar
1          x          Salt and freshly ground black pepper

 

Preheat oven to 450 °F.

Gently press the drained hash browns between paper towels to dry them as best as possible. In a 9-inch pie plate, toss the hash browns with the melted butter into the plate. Press them into the bottom and up the sides to form a crust. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown and starting to crisp.

Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, combine the remaining ingredients. When the hash brown crust is ready pour the egg mixture over it and return to the oven.

Lower the oven temperature to 350 °F and bake for about 30 minutes until the quiche is light golden brown on top and puffed.

 


Kicked Up French Toast

 

8          slices    day-old cinnamon-raisin bread (you want it drier and harder than fresh)

2          oz        cream cheese, softened

4          large    eggs

1 1/4    cups     milk

3          Tbs      light brown sugar

3/4       tsp       vanilla extract

1/2       tsp       cinnamon

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

Powdered sugar, as topping

Maple or Cane Syrup, as desired

Bacon Twirls, recipe follows

 

Preheat the oven to 300 °F.  Lay the bread on a flat work surface. Spread 4 slices with a heaping Tbs of cream cheese, and top each with the remaining slices of bread.

 

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, brown sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. Place the bread flat in a casserole dish and cover with the egg mixture. Let soak for 5 to 10 seconds.   If using fresh bread, just submerge and sort of squeeze together so that, like a sponge, when you release it, the bread springs back and sucks in the liquid.

 

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Melt 2 Tbs of the butter in the pan. Add as many slices of soaked bread to the pan as will fit in 1 layer, and cook until golden brown, about 4 minutes per side. Remove from the pan, place on a baking sheet and keep warm in the oven. Melt the remaining 1 Tbs of butter in the pan and cook the remaining bread.

 

Sprinkle the French toast with powdered sugar and serve immediately with syrup, and bacon twirls on the side.

 

Bacon Twirls:

1          lb                     bacon

 

Preheat the oven to 425 °F.

Cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place the bacon in an even layer on the sheet and twist each slice from both ends to create a corkscrew effect. Return to the baking sheet and press down on both ends to keep from unraveling.

 

Bake in the oven until brown and crisp, about 12 to 15 minutes, turning as needed halfway through the cooking time.

 

Remove from the oven and drain on paper towels. Serve warm.

 

 


Maple Pecan Bacon

 

Simple and tasty, you can also just bake the bacon without the pecans and maple syrup for an easy, spatter free way of fixing it.

 

1          cup      crushed pecans

12        slices    thick-cut bacon

1/3       cup      maple syrup

Preheat broiler.

 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

 

Spread the pecans in a shallow baking dish. Brush the top of the bacon slices with maple syrup. Press the bacon into the pecans and lay the slices on a wire-rack-fitted sheet tray. Bake until crisp and golden, 25 minutes.

 

 


Mexican Omelet

 

I like this recipe as it can be made for several people at once, all in one oven pan.

 

1          x          red bell pepper, roughly chopped

1          x          green bell pepper, roughly chopped

¼         cup      olive oil

Freshly ground salt

Freshly ground pepper

1/3       cup      chopped onion

1          x          clove garlic, finely chopped

1/8       cup      olives, halved

1          x          medium tomato, thinly sliced

1          x          Serrano chili, finely chopped

1          x          potato, cooked in boiling, salted water, then diced

¼         tsp       dried oregano

4          Tbs      finely chopped parsley

6          x          eggs, separated

½         tsp       cold water

¼         cup      heavy whipping cream

4          Tbs      salted butter

 

Preheat broiler.

 

Cook bell peppers in olive oil on medium heat. Season generously with salt and pepper. Add onion and garlic. Stir in olives, then tomatoes, stirring constantly. Add Serrano and potato. Reduce heat to low and add herbs.

 

While vegetables are cooking, beat together egg whites, salt (to taste), and water, until mixture forms stiff, but not dry, peaks. Separately combine cream and yolks, and thoroughly fold into egg whites.

 

Melt butter in a large, ovenproof pan over high heat. Pour out half of butter and reserve. Add 3/4 of egg mixture to pan, and then add vegetables, distributed evenly. When underside is cooked (takes less than a minute), pour on remaining egg mixture. Place pan in broiler for 2 minutes.

 

To serve, invert onto a heated serving platter and brush with reserved melted butter.

 

Feel free to add crumbled fried bacon or sausage to this mixture.

 

 

 


Orange Bread

 

Outstanding and easy breakfast rolls.

 

¼         cup      Sugar

½         cup      chopped pecans

2          Tbs      grated orange rind

2          cans     (11 oz each) refrigerated buttermilk biscuits

1          pkg      (3 oz) cream cheese, cut into 20 squares

½         cup      butter or margarine, melted

1          cup      sifted powdered sugar

2-3       Tbs      orange juice

 

Combine first 3 ingredients in a small bown; set aside.

 

Separate biscuit dough into individual biscuits; gently separate individual biscuits in half.  Place a cream cheese square between 2 halves and pinch sides to seal each back together.  Dip in butter, and dredge in reserved sugar mixture.  Stand biscuits on edge in a lightly creased 12-cup bundt pan, spacing evenly around it.

 

Drizzle with remaining butter and sprinkle with remaining sugar mixture.

 

Bake at 350 °F for 45 minutes or until golden.  Immediately invert onto a serving plate.

 

Combine powndered sugar and orange juice; stir well.  Drizzle over warm bread.  Serve immediately.

 

 


Panettone French Toast With Rum

 

1          17 oz   loaf panettone (sweet Italian egg bread w/ fruit)

      or

1          lb         raisin challah

½         cup      sugar

1          tsp       ground cinnamon

8          large    eggs

2          cups     whole milk

2/3       cup      dark rum

8          Tbs      unsalted butter

 

Preheat oven to 200 °F. Cut bread into 1-inch-thick slices. Cut slices into twenty 5x1-inch strips. Reserve any remaining bread for another use. Combine sugar and cinnamon in small bowl. In shallow bowl, whisk together eggs, milk and rum.

 

Dip 5 bread strips into egg mixture; let stand 2 minutes. Melt 2 Tbs butter in large nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Cook bread until golden brown and firm touch, about 4 minutes on each side. Sprinkle 2 Tbs cinnamon sugar over French toast, turning to coat on all sides. Cook until sugar melts, turning once, about 2 minutes. Transfer French toast to baking sheet; keep warm in oven. Repeat with remaining bread, egg mixture, butter and cinnamon sugar in 3 more batches. Transfer French toast to plates.

 

 

 


Peanut Butter and Banana Stuffed French Toast

 

Not much more complicated as regular French toast, it packs a punch as far as a stick to your ribs breakfast and a lot of subtle flavors.  Don’t skimp on the vanilla, rum, cinnamon and nutmeg; they add a lot to the overall flavor.  Also, 1 piece (sandwich) is sufficient for most, a max of 2 pieces for really hungry people.

 

6          slices    day-old white or wheat bread

1-2       each     ripe bananas

8          Tbs      creamy peanut butter

Honey, for drizzling

4          each     eggs

¼         cup      heavy cream

1          Tbs      vanilla

1          Tbs      dark rum

½         tsp       cinnamon

¼         tsp       nutmeg

1          Dash    salt

Butter or oil, for frying

Powdered sugar, for topping

Maple Syrup, for topping

 

Remove crust from bread. Lay bread out on counter and spread a thin layer of peanut butter on each slice. Peel banana and slice enough to cover every other piece of bread. (You will be making 3 complete sandwiches). Drizzle a small amount of honey on each piece of bread that does not have banana on it. (These are the tops). Place honey drizzled piece of bread on top of a piece with bananas on it to make a sandwich. Repeat until you have made 3 sandwiches.

In a shallow medium sized bowl, gently whip, by hand, the eggs, cream, vanilla, rum, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.

 

Heat skillet to medium heat, around 350 °F to375 °F, or until butter melts and begins to sizzle. Dip 1 sandwich at a time into rum batter and place into skillet. Cook until golden brown (about 3 to 4 minutes before turning) on each side. Remove from skillet and cut in 1/2 diagonally. Top with powdered sugar, butter and maple syrup.

 

 

 

 


San Diegan Omelet

 

I like the filler of the potatoes in this.  A good way to make more for less.

 

2          x          small red potatoes

1          Tbs      margarine

1          Tbs      butter

3          slices    bacon

Sprinkle granulated garlic

¼         cup      yellow onion, diced

Salt and pepper

½         cup      Portobello mushrooms, diced

3          x          eggs

2-3       Tbs      sour cream

½         cup      tomatoes, diced

2-3       Tbs      feta cheese crumbles (optional)

 

Boil red potatoes to 90 percent cooked and cool in the refrigerator until cold. When potatoes are cold, cut into medium sized chunks and sauté in 1 Tbs of margarine and 1 Tbs of butter.

 

When the potatoes are almost finished sautéing, begin to cook the bacon crisply and cut into small pieces. Set aside.

 

Just before the potatoes are browned, sprinkle garlic, onions, salt and pepper onto the potatoes. Drain off excess oil. Set aside.

 

Sauté mushrooms. Set aside.

 

Whip 3 eggs together. Grease a 10-inch omelet pan with margarine over a medium heat. Have all other ingredients ready to assemble quickly after the eggs are cooked. Put the eggs in a pan and cook slowly over a medium heat. With a spatula, push the eggs to the center of the pan.  As the eggs begin to seal on the bottom, keep folding the loose eggs under the cooked portion. When almost all the loose egg is cooked, spread on the sour cream into the center third of the omelet , then place potatoes on the sour cream, followed with mushrooms, tomatoes and bacon. Top with feta cheese.  Fold one third of the omelet over the center, then slide the omelet onto a plate, using the pan to flip the other third over the top as you slide it out of the pan.

 

An alternative is, as this recipe originally was written, that this is an open-faced omelet, and that, when the eggs are almost completely cooked, flip the eggs over, slide it all off onto the plate, then add all of the ingredients over the entire browned surface.

 

 


Soft Scrambled Eggs with Fresh Ricotta and Chives

 

Fresh ricotta brings out the eggs' creaminess.

 

4          large    eggs
1          Tbs      chopped fresh chives
¼         tsp       fleur de sel or coarse kosher salt plus more for sprinkling
1          Tbs      butter
½         cup      fresh ricotta cheese*
4          x          1/3 to 1/2-inch-thick slices whole grain bread or 8 whole grain baguette 

slices, lightly toasted and buttered

Whole chives (optional)

Whisk eggs, chopped chives, and 1/4 tsp fleur de sel in medium bowl until well blended. Melt butter in heavy medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. When foam subsides, add eggs and stir with heatproof silicone spatula until eggs are almost cooked but still runny in parts, tilting skillet and stirring with spatula to allow uncooked portion to flow underneath, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Add ricotta and stir just until incorporated but clumps of cheese are still visible.

Arrange 2 toasts or 4 baguette slices on each of 2 plates. Spoon scrambled eggs atop toasts. Sprinkle with more fleur de sel and pepper. Garnish with whole chives, if desired.

onto the plate, then add all of the ingredients over the entire browned surface.

 

 


Sticky Bacon Bread

 

 

One can of Pillsbury Grands Flaky Layers Biscuits

One pound of crispy & slightly crumbled up Bacon!

4 tbsp. Melted Butter

1/2 Cup packed Brown Sugar

1 tsp. – 1 tbsp. Cinnamon…to your liking.

1/2 Cup Maple Syrup

Chopped Nuts optional..I didn’t use any!

 

Spray the baking pan with non-stick spray..

Combine the melted Butter and Syrup in a small bowl and set aside.  In another small bowl combine the Brown Sugar, Cinnamon and nuts if desired..mix well!

Pour a enough of the butter mixture in the bottom of the pan just to coat, and sprinkle some of the Sugar onto that.  Top with a nice layer of Bacon shards!  This will end up being the gooey top of the Sticky Bacon Bread when you flip it out!

Layer each Biscuit in a circle around the pan, making sure to top each one with some Syrup, Sugar & Bacon!  Really ‘goo’ that baby up, use every last drop of the Syrup and Sugar mixtures!

The empty center will fill in as it bakes..no worries!

Resist the urge to eat it like this!  Bake it at 350 degrees, uncovered for approx. 30 minutes…

It will be golden and puffy when it’s done!  Let it cool a bit to set up, before flipping it out onto your platter!

 


Sticky Cinnamon Rolls

 

1 ½      cups     all purpose flour

1          cup      whole wheat flour

¼         cup      firmly packed brown sugar

1          env      rapid-rise yeast

½         tsp       salt

½         tsp       ground cinnamon

¾         cup      warm water (125 °F. to 130 °F.)

¼         cup      (1/2 stick) butter, melted

1          x          egg

 

 

1 ½      cups     firmly packed brown sugar

1          cup      (2 sticks) butter, room temperature

1          cup      chopped walnuts

1          Tbs      ground cinnamon

½         cup      raisins

 

Using electric mixer fitted with dough hook or paddle, mix first 6 ingredients in large bowl. Add water, butter and egg and mix until smooth dough forms, about 4 minutes. Transfer dough to greased bowl. Cover with plastic and clean towel. Let dough rise in warm draft-free area until doubled in volume, about 30 minutes.

 

Butter 9x13-inch baking dish. Bring 1 cup brown sugar and 1/2 cup butter to boil in heavy small saucepan. Boil 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 cup walnuts. Pour into prepared dish. Punch dough down. Roll out on lightly floured surface to 15x9-inch rectangle. Spread dough evenly with remaining 1/2 cup butter. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1 Tbs cinnamon. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup walnuts and raisins. Roll up jelly roll style, starting at one long side. Slice dough into 1-inch-thick rounds.

 

Arrange dough slices cut side down in prepared dish, spacing evenly. Cover with plastic. Let rise in warm draft-free area until doubled, about 45 minutes.

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F. Bake rolls until golden brown, about 45 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes. Turn out onto platter. Cool slightly. Serve warm.

 


Sticky Pecan Rolls

 

For the Brioche:
3          env      active dry yeast
½         cup      warm milk (about 110 degrees)
1          x          vanilla bean, split
5          cups     flour
6          x          eggs
½         cup      warm water (110 degrees)
3          Tbs      sugar
2          tsp       salt
¾         lbs        butter, plus 2 tablespoons, room temperature
1          large    egg, beaten

For the Filling:
1          cup      of sugar
1          tsp       cinnamon

For the Topping:
½         lbs        butter
1          cup      light brown sugar
2          cups     pecan pieces

Preheat the oven to 400 °F.

For the Brioche: Combine the yeast and milk in a small bowl and stir to dissolve the yeast. Add 1 cup flour and mix to blend well. Using a knife, scrape the vanilla bean and stir the pulp into the yeast mixture. Let sit at room temperature in a warm, draft-free place for about 2 hours to allow fermentation.

Put 2 cups of the flour into a large mixing bowl. Add 4 of the eggs, one at a time, beating thoroughly into the flour using a wooden spoon with each addition. The dough will be sticky, thick, and spongy. Add the water, sugar, and salt and mix well, beating vigorously. Add 3/4 pound butter and work it into the dough with your hands until it is well blended. Add the remaining 2 eggs and mix well into the dough. Add the remaining 2 cups of flour and blend into the dough, breaking up any lumps with your fingers. Add the yeast mixture. Using your hands, knead and fold the starter into the dough. Continue kneading and folding until all is well mixed, about 5 minutes. The dough will be sticky and moist. Cover with a clean cloth and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until it doubles in size, about 2 hours.

With your fingers, lightly punch down the dough. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until it doubles in size, about 1 hour.

To assemble: Divide the dough into 2 equal portions. Refrigerate one ball of dough while working with the other. Lightly dust the work surface with flour and roll out the dough into a rectangle, about 14 inches long and 1/4-inch thick. Using a pastry brush, egg wash the edges of the dough. In a small bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon. Mix well. Sprinkle half of the mixture over 3/4 of the dough. Roll the dough up tightly to form a log. Wrap the log in plastic wrap and freeze for 30 minutes. Repeat the above process with the other ball of dough. In a mixing bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar and remaining 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon. Mix well. Smear the bottom of 2 (10-inch) round cake pan with the butter mixture. Sprinkle the butter with the pecan pieces. Remove the logs from the refrigerator. Using a sharp knife, slice into 1 1/2-inch slices. Place the slices on top of the pecans, about 1/2-inch away from each other. Let the buns rise until double in size, about 1 1/2 hours. Place in the oven and bake until golden brown, about 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and turn onto a serving platter. Cool for about 5 minutes and serve warm.


Ultimate Coffee Cake (Paula Deen)

 

As the story goes, Paula Deen made these once for President Carter, so they really are good!

 

16-18   x          unbaked frozen dinner rolls (use Rhodes brand if you can)
1          (3oz)    package regular butterscotch pudding mix, not instant
½         cup      brown sugar, packed
½         cup      pecans, chopped
1          stick     (1/2 cup) butter, melted

 

The night before place frozen rolls in well greased Bundt pan.  Use a Bundt pan if you can, because an Angel Food pan will leak from the bottom (found this out personally), and a regular pan will be too thick in the middle and the middle will be very doughy (this one too!).  Sprinkle dry pudding mix over rolls. Sprinkle brown sugar over pudding mix. Sprinkle chopped pecans over brown sugar. Pour melted butter over all. To prevent the dough from forming a hard crust while its rising overnight, cover with a damp towel or tightly wrap with plastic wrap. Let rise overnight at room temperature, about 8 to 10 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 °F.

Bake in oven for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Turn pan over onto a serving platter to remove. Serve by pulling apart chunks with forks.

 


Ultimate Sticky Buns

 

Dough

1          cup      warm water (105 °F to 115 °F)

4          tsp       dry yeast

2/3       cup      sugar

½         cup      unsalted butter, room temperature

½         cup      dry nonfat milk powder

1 ¼      tsp       salt

2          large    eggs

4 ¼      cups     (or more) all purpose flour

 

Glaze

1 ¼      cups     (packed) golden brown sugar

¾         cup      (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

¼         cup      honey

¼         cup      dark corn syrup

¼         cup      water

2          cups     pecan halves

 

4          tsp       sugar

4          tsp       ground cinnamon

 

For Dough:

Mix 1/4 cup warm water, yeast, and pinch of sugar in small bowl. Let stand until foamy, about 8 minutes. Using electric mixer, beat remaining sugar, butter, milk powder, and salt in large bowl until well blended. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Mix in remaining 3/4 cup warm water and yeast mixture, then 3 cups flour, 1 cup at a time. Using rubber spatula, mix in 1 cup flour, scraping down sides of bowl frequently (dough will be soft and sticky). Sprinkle 1/4 cup flour onto work surface and knead until smooth and elastic, adding more flour if sticky, about 8 minutes.

 

Butter another large bowl. Add dough; turn to coat. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let dough rise in warm area until doubled, about 2 1/2 hours.

 

For Glaze:

Butter two 10-inch round cake pans with 2-inch high sides. Beat brown sugar, 1/2 cup butter, honey, corn syrup, and 1/4 cup water in medium bowl to blend. Spread half of glaze in bottom of each prepared pan. Sprinkle 1 cup pecans over each.

 

Punch down dough. Divide dough in half. Roll each dough piece out on floured work surface to 12x9-inch rectangle. Brush any excess flour off dough. Spread remaining butter over dough rectangles, dividing equally. Mix 4 tsp sugar and cinnamon in small bowl. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar over rectangles. Starting at 1 long side, tightly roll up each rectangle into log. Cut each log into 12 rounds. Place 12 rounds, cut side down, in each prepared pan, spacing evenly. Cover with plastic wrap. (Can be made 1 day ahead; refrigerate.) Let buns rise in warm area until almost doubled, about 1 hour (or 1 hour 25 minutes if refrigerated).

 

Preheat oven to 375 °F. Bake buns until deep golden brown, about 30 minutes. Run small knife around pan sides to loosen sticky buns. Turn hot buns out onto platter. Cool about 30 minutes and serve.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Zesty Orange Cinnamon Rolls

 

1          pkg      active dry yeast

¼         cup      warm water

1          cup      potato-cooking water

½         cup      mashed potato

½         cup      sugar plus 2/3 cup sugar

1 ½      tsp       salt

6          Tbs      butter, softened plus 1/2 cup softened butter

1          x          egg

4-4 ½   cups     flour

1          Tbs      ground cinnamon

 

Stir the yeast into the warm water in a large mixing bowl and let stand a few minutes to dissolve. Add the potato water, mashed potato, 1/2 cup sugar, salt, butter and egg and beat well. Add 2 cups of the flour and beat until smooth. Add enough of the remaining flour to make a manageable dough, then turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 1 minute or 2. Cover with plastic wrap to prevent drying out. Let rest 10 minutes. Resume kneading for about 8 to 10 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic. Sprinkle on a little more flour as necessary to keep dough from being too sticky. Place in a large greased bowl, cover and let rest until double in bulk.

Punch dough down. On a floured surface, roll dough into a 14 by 8 inch rectangle. Spread dough with 1/2 cup softened butter. Mix 2/3 cup sugar with 1 Tbs ground cinnamon in a small bowl. Sprinkle over butter. Roll up from long sides like a jelly roll. Cut into 12 equal pieces. Arrange, cut sides up, in a greased 9 by13 inch pan. Cover pan loosely with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in bulk approximately 30 to 40 minutes. Bake at 350 °For 30 to 40 minutes or until done. Remove from oven and cool on wire racks. Drizzle with both icings 1 at a time.

 

ORANGE ICING:

1 cup sifted powdered sugar

1 tsp shredded orange peel

1/2 tsp vanilla

Fresh orange juice (about 1 to 2 Tbs)

 

Combine all ingredients to icing of drizzling consistency.

 

WHITE ICING:

1 cup sifted powdered sugar

3/4 tsp almond extract

Milk (about 1 to 2 Tbs)

 

Combine all ingredients to make icing of drizzling consistency.


Appetizers


                                                     

 

 

 

Arancini di Riso

 

 

Vegetable oil, for deep-frying

2          large    eggs, beaten to blend

2          cups     Risotto with Mushrooms, cooled

½         cup      grated Parmesan

1 ½      cups     dried Italian-style bread crumbs

2          oz        mozzarella, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

Salt

 

Pour enough oil in a heavy large saucepan to reach the depth of 3 inches. Heat the oil over medium heat to 350 °F.

Stir the eggs, risotto, Parmesan, and 1/2 cup of the bread crumbs in a large bowl to combine. Place the remaining breadcrumbs in a medium bowl. Using about 2 Tbs of the risotto mixture for each, form the risotto mixture into 1 3/4-inch-diameter balls. Insert 1 cube of mozzarella into the center of each ball. Roll the balls in the bread crumbs to coat.

 

Working in batches, add the rice balls to the hot ail and cook until brown and heated through, turning them as necessary, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the rice balls to paper towels to drain. Season with salt. Let rest 2 minutes. Serve hot.

 

 

 

 


Artichoke Bottoms With Bay Scallops

 

This is a really nice appetizer, good flavors and a nice texture.

 

¾         lb         scallops, bay, washed

1          cup      bread crumbs, fresh, fine

3          Tbs      parsley, fresh, minced

½         tsp       tarragon, dried

¼         cup      celery, minced

2          x          garlic, cloves, minced

28        oz        artichoke bottoms, drained (2-14 oz cans)

Canola Oil, for brushing on grill rack

 

Mix scallops, bread crumbs, parsley, tarragon, celery and garlic in a bowl. Gently mound filling into artichoke bottoms. Prepare grill. When coals are hot, set artichokes on grill rack, brushed with oil, about 4 to 6 inches from heat source. Cover grill. Cook stuffed artichokes for about 3 minutes or until scallops are opaque. Using a long-handled spatula, transfer artichoke bottoms to serving dish. Serve hot.

 

 


Assorted Tea Sandwiches

 

These dainty sandwiches are the perfect savories to complement the sweets at teatime. They are light, well trimmed tidbits for easy consumption.  Makes 48 Tea Sandwiches

 

Salmon Sandwiches:

4          oz        thinly sliced smoked salmon

4          oz        cream cheese, softened

1          Tbs      chopped fresh dill

8          thin      slices large square pumpernickel bread

Watercress Sandwiches:

1/3       cup      watercress sprigs

¼         cup      fresh parsley leaves

¼         cup      (½ stick) butter or margarine, softened

4          oz        cream cheese, softened

2          Tbs      finely chopped chives

Salt and ground black pepper to taste

8          thin      slices large firm white bread, crusts removed

Cucumber Sandwiches:

2          small    cucumbers, peeled

½         tsp       salt

8          thin      slices large firm white bread, crusts removed

¼         cup      light or reduced-calorie mayonnaise

1          tsp       distilled white vinegar

½         tsp       Ground white pepper to taste, or to taste

Fresh dill sprigs or watercress (optional)

 

1. Salmon Sandwiches: In food processor fitted with chopping blade, process salmon and cream cheese until smooth. With rubber spatula, fold in dill until well mixed. Spread salmon mixture evenly over half the bread slices and top with remaining slices. Cut each sandwich diagonally into 4 triangles. Place on tray or plate; cover with slightly damp paper towel and plastic wrap. Refrigerate until serving time.

2. Watercress Sandwiches: In food processor fitted with chopping blade, process watercress and parsley until finely chopped. Add butter, cream cheese, chives, salt, and pepper; process until mixture turns green. Spread mixture on half the bread slices and top with remaining slices. Cut each sandwich diagonally into 4 triangles. Place on tray or plate; cover with slightly damp paper towel and plastic wrap. Refrigerate until served.

3. Cucumber Sandwiches: Cut cucumbers lengthwise in half; remove and discard seeds. Cut cucumber halves crosswise into paper-thin slices. In bowl, toss cucumbers with salt; let sit 15 minutes. Meanwhile, spread each bread slice with mayonnaise on one side. Drain cucumbers on paper towels; return to bowl and toss with vinegar and pepper. Arrange cucumbers over half the bread slices. Top with remaining bread slices, mayonnaise- side down. Cut each sandwich into 4 squares. Place on tray or plate; cover with slightly damp paper towel and plastic wrap. Refrigerate until serving time. 4. Just before serving, arrange an assortment of the sandwiches on a serving plate. Garnish with fresh dill sprigs or watercress, if desired.


Baked Goat Cheese with Caramelized Onion, Garlic and Mission Figs

 

2          lbs        goat cheese

14        x          dried Mission figs (1 cup), sliced

¼         cup      dry sherry

¼         cup      olive oil

2          large    Spanish onions, thinly sliced

10        cloves  garlic, crushed

3          sprigs   rosemary

2          tsp       salt

1          x          Freshly ground black pepper

2          x          sliced baguettes, for dipping

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F.

 

Crumble the goat cheese into an oven safe dish and set aside.

 

In a sauce pot combine the figs and sherry with enough water to barely cover the figs.

 

Place the sauce pot over high heat and bring up to a bubble, cover and remove from the heat and let the figs plump while the onions are cooking.

 

Pour the olive oil into a large skillet and place over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper and cook, stirring often, for about 10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Using a slotted spoon remove the plumped figs from the sauce pot, leaving behind any of the pluming liquid. Add the figs to the cooked onions, stir to combine and then spoon over the goat cheese. Place the dish into the top half of the oven for 20 minutes, until the edges begin to bubble.

 

Remove and serve immediately with sliced baguettes.


Baked Jalapeno Poppers

 

12        fresh    jalapeno peppers, halved lengthwise, stems, seeds, membranes removed

6          oz        cream cheese, softened

1 ½      cups     grated Monterey Jack or mozzarella cheese

½         tsp       ground cumin

½         tsp       cayenne, or less, to taste

2          x          large eggs

2          Tbs      milk

8          tsp       Essence, recipe in the Sauces and Rubs section

1          cup      panko crumbs, or fine dry breadcrumbs

½         cup      all-purpose flour

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F. Lightly grease a baking sheet and set aside.

In a bowl, cream together the cream cheese, Monterey Jack cheese, cumin, and cayenne.

 

In a small bowl, beat together the eggs, milk, and 2 tsp of the Essence. In a shallow dish, combine the panko crumbs and remaining 4 tsp of Essence. In a third dish, combine the flour and remaining 2 tsp of Essence. Spread 1 Tbs of the cheese mixture into the middle of each jalapeno half. One at a time, dredge in the flour, dip into the egg mixture, then dredge in the panko crumbs, pressing to coat. If necessary, repeat the process. Place the coated peppers, cut side up, on the prepared baking sheet and bake until the filling is runny and the crust is golden, about 30 minutes.

 

Remove from the oven and serve immediately with cold beer.

 

 

 

 


Benne Seed Pita Toasts

 

This is for any kind of dip you want to serve.

 

1          Tbs      cornstarch

¾         stick     unsalted butter, melted and cooled

¾         tsp       salt

1/3       cup      sesame (benne) seeds, toasted

4          each     pita loaves with pockets, halved horizontally

 

Preheat oven to 375 °F.

 

Whisk together cornstarch and 2 Tbs butter in a small bowl until smooth, then whisk in salt, remaining 4 Tbs butter, and sesame seeds.

 

Brush rough sides of pita halves with butter mixture, stirring mixture well before brushing each half. Cut each pita half into 8 wedges and arrange, seeded sides up, in 1 layer on 2 baking sheets. Bake in upper and lower thirds of oven, switching position of sheets halfway through baking, until golden, 10 to 12 minutes total. Cool toasts on a rack.

 

Cooks' note:

• Pita toasts can be made 1 day ahead and kept in an airtight container at room temperature. Recrisp in a 375 °F oven 4 to 5 minutes before serving.

 

Makes 48 hors d'oeuvre toasts.


Blood Oranges with Rosemary Honey

 

A wonderful, light, bright appetizer for any occasion.  Summer time favorite.

 

6          each     blood oranges or navel oranges  

¼         cup      honey              

4          tsp      water               

¾         tsp      fresh rosemary; finely chopped

 

Cut off both ends of each orange with a sharp paring knife, cutting just deeply enough to expose flesh.  Set each orange on one end and cut away peel and white pith in parallel arc like strokes from top to bottom.  Cut oranges crosswise into ¼ inch slices and arrange on a serving plate. 

 

Bring honey, water and rosemary just to a simmer in a small saucepan over moderately low heat, stirring.  Remove from heat and let steep, covered, 15 minutes.  Immediately pour honey through a fine sieve into a measuring cup, discarding solids, and drizzle over oranges.             

 

 

 


Bourbon Chicken Liver Pâté

 

This pate can be eaten the day it’s made, but is even better if made 1 or 2 days ahead of time.

 

1 ½      sticks   (3/4 cups) unsalted butter

1          cup      finely chopped onion

1          large    clove garlic, minced

1          tsp       minced fresh thyme (1/4 tsp dried)

1          tsp       minced fresh marjoram (1/4 tsp dried)

1          tsp       minced fresh sage (1/4 tsp dried)

¾         tsp       salt

¼         tsp       black pepper

1/8       tsp       ground allspice

1          lb         chicken livers, trimmed

2          Tbs      bourbon

 

Special Equipment – a 2 ½ cup crock or terrine, or several small ramekins

Accompaniment – crackers or toasted baguette slices

Garnish – a fresh thyme, marjoram or sage sprig, optional

 

Melt 1 stick of butter in a large non-stick skillet over moderately low heat, then cook onion and garlic, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes.  Add herbs, salt, pepper, allspice and livers and cook, stirring, until lovers are cooked outside but still pink when cut open, about 8 minutes.  Remove from heat, and stir in bourbon.  Purée mixture in a good processor until smooth, then transfer pâté to crock and smooth top.

 

Melt remaining ½ stick butter in a very small, heavy saucepan over low heat, then remove pan from heat and let butter stand 3 minutes.  If using herb garnish, put sprig on top of pâté.  Skim froth from butter, then spoon enough clarified butter over pâté to cover its surface, leaving milky solids in bottom of pan.

 

Chill pâté until butter is firm, about 30 minutes, then cover with plastic wrap and chill at least 2 hours more.  It can be chilled for up to 2 weeks, but once the butter seal has been broken, cover surface with plastic wrap and don’t store for more than 1 week.

 

                          


Bourbon-Marinated Buffalo Chicken Strips

 

Boys and girls, this is it.  This is the BEST chicken wing/strip recipe you will ever have.

 

¼         cup      bourbon             

¼         cup      soy sauce            

¼         cup      lemon juice; fresh

2          lbs        chicken thighs; boneless, skinless, or tenders or breasts

For the Sauce          

¼         cup      crystal Hot Sauce; or other Cayenne hot sauce

4          Tbs     unsalted butter or margarine; melted

¾         tsp      salt; coarse ground

1          Tbs     cornstarch mixed with ¼ cup water

For finishing the Dish       

1          qt         oil               

½         tsp      ground black pepper       

3          cups     flour              

2          x          bell peppers (red, green, yellow)

1          x          cucumber; seeded, speared

1          x          celery heart           

 

Marinate the Chicken:                           

In a large bowl, combine the bourbon, soy sauce and lemon juice.  Trim and discard any visible fat on the chicken thighs.  Cut each thigh lengthwise into 5 or 6 strips.  Toss the strips into the bourbon mixture.  Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours.                         

                                     

Make the Sauce:                             

In a small saucepan, whisk together the hot sauce, melted butter, salt and cornstarch mixture.  Heat while whisking constantly until the mixture comes to a boil.  The sauce should be smooth and slightly thickened.  Remove from heat and keep warm.                          

                                     

Finish the Dish:                             

Heat the oven to 250 °F.  Pour enough oil into a deep, heavy pot to reach about 2 inches.  Heat the oil to 365 °F or until the oil shimmers and the air 2 inches above the oil feels hot.                 

Drain the chicken well and pat dry with paper towels.  Season the chicken with the ½ tsp.  pepper.  Spread the flour in a wide, shallow container and dredge one-third of the thigh strips, shaking off the excess flour.  Carefully put the strips one at a time in the hot oil.  Fry until the strips are golden brown, about 7 minutes.  Remove from the oil and drain on paper towels.  Repeat this process until al the chicken has been fried.  Put the fried chicken in a large bowl.  Toss with warm sauce and spread in a single layer on baking sheet.  Heat in the oven for about 5 minutes so the sauce is absorbed.  Serve immediately with the dip, peppers, cucumber and celery.                                

 

For dips, use good quality Blue Cheese and Ranch dressings, usually found in the refrigerated fresh produce section.


Buffalo Wings

 

Another nice one for a change of pace.

 

Wings:

1          can       beer

3          Tbs      hot sauce

2          lbs        wings, chicken tenders, or thighs or breasts cut into tender-like strips

Vegetable oil or shortening, for frying

1          cup      all-purpose flour

1 1/2    tsp       salt

1          tsp       freshly ground black pepper

1          tsp       ground cinnamon

1          tsp       cayenne

 

Sauce:

1/2       cup      unsalted butter, melted

5          Tbs      hot sauce

1          tsp       dark brown sugar

 

To make the tenders: In a large bowl, whisk together the beer and hot sauce. Add chicken and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 3 hours.

To make the sauce: Combine all ingredients and set aside.

 

Add oil or shortening to a large pot or deep-fat fryer to make a depth of 1-inch. Heat to 375 °F.

 

Meanwhile, in a medium-size bowl, combine the flour, salt, pepper, cinnamon, and cayenne. Strain the chicken strips and pat them dry. Lightly dust in the flour mixture. Fry the strips, in batches as necessary, turning every 3 minutes until crisp and brown, about 12 minutes (adjust the heat as needed to maintain temperature). Let the oil heat up again for 2-3 minutes each time you remove finished strips from the pan.  Drain strips on paper towels and toss with butter sauce.

 

Serve immediately with blue cheese or ranch dip and carrot and celery sticks.

 

 

 

 


Clam Dip (Nana Lambert’s)

 

From Ashley’s new family.

 

16        oz        Phili Cream Cheese

2          cans     minced clams

3          Tbs      Worcestershire sauce

2          Tbs      Lemon Juice

 

 

Drain the cans of clam, reserving ¼ cup.  Put everything into a blender (including the reserved juice) and blend well.  Refrigerate for at least one hour.

 

 

 

 


Coconut-Beer Battered Shrimp with Multiple Dips

 

1 1/3    cups     all-purpose flour

2          Tbs      granulated sugar

2          Tbs      Essence, plus more for dusting, recipe in the Sauces and Rubs section

1 ¼      cups     beer

2 ½      cups     unsweetened coconut flakes

1 ½      lbs        large shrimp, peeled and deveined, with tails left on

4          cups     vegetable oil, for frying

¼         cup      minced fresh cilantro

Dipping Sauces, recipes follow

 

In a deep sauté pan or pot, heat the oil to 360 °F.

Combine the flour, sugar, and Essence in a medium bowl. Slowly add the beer and whisk to form a smooth batter. Place the coconut flakes in a shallow bowl.

 

One at a time, holding them by the tail, dip the shrimp into the batter to coat, then dredge in the coconut, turning to coat evenly and pressing to make the flakes adhere.

 

Fry in batches in the oil until golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels and season lightly with Essence.

 

Place the sauces of choice in a bowl on a large platter. Arrange the shrimp on the platter around the bowl and sprinkle with the chopped cilantro. Serve immediately.

 

Mango-Orange Chutney:

2 large seedless oranges

1 Tbs vegetable oil

1/2 cup chopped yellow onions

1/2 cup chopped red bell peppers

1 Tbs minced jalapeno peppers

1 1/2 tsp curry powder

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp cayenne

2 cups diced mango

1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

1 Tbs grated orange zest

Cut away the peel and pith from the oranges, and segment over a bowl to catch the juices.

 

In a saucepan over medium heat, heat the oil. Add the onions, bell peppers, jalapenos, curry, salt, and cayenne, and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the mango and cook, stirring for 2 minutes. Add the orange segments, vinegar, sugar, and zest, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened, 20 to 25 minutes.

 

Remove from the heat and adjust the seasoning, to taste. Pour into a decorative bowl and let cool completely before serving.

 

Apricot-Ginger Dipping Sauce:

½         cup      apricot jam

1          Tbs      freshly grated ginger

1          Tbs      Dijon mustard

1          x          jalapeño pepper, seeds discarded, minced

2          Tbs      seasoned rice wine vinegar or freshly squeezed lime juice

 

Place all apricot dipping sauce ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. Reserve.

 

Red Curry Sauce:

2          Tbs      vegetable oil

2          Tbs      Thai red curry paste

1          cup      unsweetened coconut milk

1          x          lime, juiced

 

Place a small pot over medium heat and coat with the oil. Stir the red curry paste into the pan and fry that up until aromatic. Slowly pour in the coconut milk and continue to stir to incorporate. Add the lime juice (and 1 of the squeezed out halves for added flavor) and cook for 5 to 10 minutes to thicken. Pour the sauce into a nice serving bowl and serve with the coconut shrimp.

 

Peanut Sauce:

¼         cup      chicken stock

3          oz        unsweetened coconut milk

1          oz        lime juice

1          oz        soy sauce

1          Tbs      fish sauce or 2 to 3 anchovies, ground

1          Tbs      hot sauce

2          Tbs      chopped garlic

1          Tbs      chopped ginger

1 ½      cups     creamy peanut butter

¼         cup      chopped cilantro

 

In a food processor, puree the chicken stock, coconut milk, lime juice, soy sauce, fish sauce, hot sauce, chopped garlic, and ginger. Add the peanut butter and pulse to combine. Fold in the cilantro and keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

 

Honey Mustard Horseradish Sauce:

1          cup      mayonnaise

1 ½      cups     honey

½         cup      Dijon mustard

½         cup      horseradish

 

Mix all ingredients well.

 

Lime Dressing:

1          cup      sour cream

1          x          lime, zested and juiced

1          small    shallot, finely diced

2          Tbs      chopped parsley

1          Tbs      sugar

¼         tsp       finely chopped scotch bonnet pepper

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

 

Combine ingredients in a small bowl, and chill until ready to serve.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Crab Cakes with Grainy Mustard and Scallion Sauces

 

2          lbs        jumbo lump crab meat, cleaned and drained

2          Tbs      mayonnaise

2          tsp       Dijon mustard

2          large    egg yolks

1          Tbs      Old Bay seasoning

¼         tsp       coarse salt

¼         tsp       cayenne pepper

8          cups     cornflake crumbs

4          Tbs      unsalted butter, melted

Grainy Mustard Sauce, recipe follows

Scallion Sauce, recipe follows

 

Heat oven to 300 °F.

In a medium bowl, combine crab, mayonnaise, mustard, and egg yolks. Season with Old Bay Seasoning, salt, and cayenne. Using a 3-oz ice cream scoop, form mixture into 8 equal-size balls. Lightly dredge in cornflake crumbs, transfer to a baking sheet, and drizzle with butter. Bake until heated through, 12 to 14 minutes. Serve with mustard and scallion sauces.

 

 

Grainy Mustard Sauce:

9          Tbs      unsalted butter, cut into Tbs

2                      shallots, thinly sliced

¾         tsp       Champagne vinegar

1 ¼      cups     dry white wine

2          fresh    thyme sprigs

2          Tbs      heavy cream

¼         cup      grainy mustard

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

 

In a small saucepan, melt 1 Tbs butter over medium heat. Add shallots and cook until translucent. Add vinegar, wine, and thyme and continue to cook until reduced by 2/3. Add cream and reduce until thick. Whisk in remaining 8 Tbs butter. Strain through a fine sieve. Fold in mustard, and season with salt and pepper.

 

Yield: about ¾            cup

 

Scallion Sauce:

½         cup      scallion greens, roughly chopped

½         cup      (1 stick) unsalted butter

1          cup      flat-leaf parsley leaves

½         x          lemon, juiced, plus more to taste

½         cup      heavy cream

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

 

In a food processor fitted with the steel blade attachment, combine scallions, butter, parsley, and lemon juice. Process until well combined. Transfer to refrigerator, and chill for 20 minutes.

Heat cream in a small saucepan until reduced by 1/2. Whisk in chilled butter mixture. Strain through a fine sieve and season with salt, pepper, and lemon juice.

 

Yield: about 1/2 cup

 

 

 


Crabmeat-Stuffed Shrimp

 

1          lb         fresh lump crabmeat, picked over for shells and cartilage

2          tsp       Essence, recipe in the Sauces and Rubs section

 

4          Tbs      unsalted butter, plus 3 Tbs melted unsalted butter

½         cup      minced yellow onions

¼         cup      minced celery

¼         x          minced green bell peppers

¼         cup      finely chopped fresh parsley leaves

1          Tbs      minced garlic

 

¼         cup      mayonnaise

1          x          egg, lightly beaten

3          Tbs      fresh lemon juice

1          Tbs      Worcestershire sauce

1          Tbs      hot sauce

1 ½      cups     crushed buttery, flaky crackers

½         tsp       salt

¼         tsp       freshly ground black pepper

 

20        jumbo  shrimp (about 2 lbs), shelled, leaving tail and connecting shell segment, deveined, and butterflied lengthwise

2          Tbs      olive oil

1          Tbs      chopped garlic

1          tsp       crushed red pepper

½         lb         kale, chiffonade

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Chopped parsley, garnish

1          x          lemon, cut into wedges, garnish

 

Preheat the oven to 375 °F. Butter a large baking dish and set aside.

Place the crabmeat in a large bowl and season with the Essence. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

 

In a large skillet, melt 4 Tbs butter over medium-high heat. Add the onions, celery, and bell peppers and cook, stirring, until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the parsley and the garlic, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Remove from heat and let cool.

 

Add the cooled vegetables to the crabmeat and toss to combine. Add the mayonnaise, egg, lemon juice, Worcestershire and hot sauce and stir gently with a large wooden spoon. Add 1 cup of the cracker crumbs, the salt, and pepper, and stir gently, being careful not to break up the crabmeat.

 

Mound about 2 Tbs of the crabmeat stuffing into each shrimp, press gently to close, and place, stuffed sides up, in the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup of the flaky, buttery cracker crumbs over the stuffed shrimp and drizzle with the remaining melted butter. Bake until golden, about 20 minutes.

 

While the shrimp are baking, heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add the olive oil. Add the garlic and crushed red pepper and cook, stirring continuously, for 1 minute. Add the kale and sauté until the kale is just wilted, about 3 to 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

 

Place the kale on 4 plates. Remove the shrimp from the oven and divide among plates, on top of the kale. Garnish with parsley and lemon wedges. Serve immediately.

 

 

 


Crispy Butternut Wontons with Spicy Tomato Sauce

 

You1ll only use a cup of the cooked squash; mash the remaining squash with a little butter, salt, and pepper to serve another day. Prepare the wonton filling up to a day ahead, the sauce up to 2 days in advance.

 

SAUCE:

4          Tbs      olive oil

1 ½      cups     thinly sliced leek (about 2 medium)

I           x          garlic clove, minced

¼         tsp       crushed red pepper

½         tsp       sea salt

½         tsp       freshly ground black pepper

1          x          can whole tomatoes, undrained and chopped (14.5-oz)

1          3-inch  orange rind strip

I           x          bay leaf

I           x          fresh tarragon sprig

 

WONTONS:

I           x          small butternut squash (about I ½ lbs)

1½       cup      water

½         cup      ricotta cheese

3          Tbs      grated fresh Parmesan cheese

2          Tbs      dry breadcrumbs

¼         tsp       sea salt

¼         tsp       freshly ground black pepper

1/8       tsp       ground nutmeg 1 tsp water

I           x          large egg, lightly beaten

24 wonton wrappers

Cooking spray

 

1. To prepare sauce, heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add leek and garlic; cook 8 minutes or until tender (do not brown), stirring frequently. Increase heat to medium-high. Add red pepper and next 6 ingredients (red pepper through tarragon); bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low; simmer 15 minutes or until thick. Discard rind, bay leaf, and tarragon.

2. Preheat oven to 375°.

3. To prepare wontons, cut the squash in half lengthwise; discard seeds and membrane. Place the squash halves, cut sides down, in a 2-quart baking dish; add 1/2 cup water. Bake at 375° for 45 minutes or until squash is tender when pierced with a fork; cool. Scoop out pulp to measure 1 cup, and reserve the remaining pulp for another use. Combine 1 cup pulp, ricotta, and the next 5 ingredients (ricotta through nutmeg), stirring until well combined.

4. Combine 1 tsp water and egg, stirring with a whisk. Working with 1 wonton wrapper at a time (cover remaining wrappers with a damp towel to prevent drying), spoon about 2 tsp squash mixture into center of each wrapper. Brush edges of dough with egg mixture; bring 2 opposite corners together. Press edges together to seal, forming a triangle. Repeat procedure with remaining wonton wrappers and squash mixture.

5. Place the wontons on a large baking sheet coated with cooking spray, and brush lightly with remaining egg mixture. at 375° forJ..7inutes or until golden and crisp. Serve with the sauce. YIi:8 servings (serving size: 3 won- tons and 3 Tbs sauce).

 

 

 

 

 


Deviled Eggs

 

One day Ashley asked me how to make Deviled Eggs.  Well, never to settle for the ordinary, I looked up recipes for them (of which there are several HUNDRED out there), and picked some of the more interesting ones to try.  Here is what I came up with as a list.  But, first of all, the question came up, in general, how do you make these things?

 

1. Hard cook your eggs using the following method.  First, place the eggs in a saucepan.  Add enough water so that there is an inch of water covering the eggs.  Heat the water until it's just about to boil, then take the pot off the heat and cover it.  Let the eggs sit in the hot water for 25 minutes, then plunge them in ice water.

 

2. Peel the shells off the eggs, then cut each egg in half lengthwise.

 

3. Pop the yolks out of the halves and put the yolks in the bowl.  Smash them with a fork and add what your favorite recipe tells you to.  Here are a couple of interesting ideas:

 

 

 

Full recipes for these can be found on page 466.


Fresh Figs with Bacon and Goat Cheese

 

4- 6      x          regular smoked bacon slices (2 1/4 to 3 1/2 ounces uncooked)

12        small    fresh ripe figs, such as white or Calimyrna, halved lengthwise

1          Tsp      balsamic vinegar

1/3       cup      (about 1 1/2 ounces) crumbled mild herbed goat cheese

 

 

Preheat the oven to 350° F. In a medium heavy skillet, place the bacon slices in a single layer and cook over low to medium-low heat, turning as needed until just beginning to brown. Transfer to a paper towel to drain. Cut each bacon slice into 4 or 6 pieces.

Arrange the figs on a baking sheet, cut sides up. Brush the cut surfaces with balsamic vinegar. Place a piece of bacon on each cut side. Top with a small crumble of cheese. Bake until the figs are warmed, about 8 minutes. The cheese will not melt but may toast a bit. Serve immediately.


Fried Calamari with Spicy Anchovy Mayonnaise

 

Anchovy Mayonnaise:

1          x          egg, at room temperature*

4 - 5     x          anchovy fillets

2          Tbs      lemon juice

1          Tbs      finely chopped parsley leaves

½         tsp       cayenne

¾         cup      light olive oil or vegetable oil

 

Calamari:

1          lb         fresh, clean calamari

4          cups     light olive oil or vegetable oil

1          cup      all-purpose flour

1          cup      graham cracker crumbs

1          tsp       kosher salt

 

 

In a food processor, combine the egg, anchovies, lemon juice, parsley, and cayenne. Blend until smooth. With the motor running, slowly add the oil to make a mayonnaise. Transfer the sauce to a bowl and refrigerate, covered tightly, for up to 2 days, until ready to serve.

Cut the calamari into 1/4-inch rings. If the tentacles are large, halve or quarter them lengthwise. Refrigerate until ready to use.

 

Pour the oil into a heavy-bottomed, straight-sided 3-quart saucepan, about 8 inches in diameter. To prevent the oil from bubbling over when frying the calamari, the pan should be no more than 1/3 full. Heat the oil to 360 °F on a deep fat thermometer. (to check the temperature without a thermometer , drop a small piece of bread the size of a crouton into the oil. It should float to the surface immediately and brown lightly in about 45 seconds.)

 

Combine the flour and graham cracker crumbs in a bowl. Divide the calamari into 2 or 3 batches for easier frying. Toss each batch in the flour mixture to coat evenly. Shake the calamari in a mesh strainer to shed excess coating. Using tongs or a slotted spoon, gently lower each batch of calamari into the hot oil and fry until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Sprinkle with salt. The cooked calamari can be kept warm in a low oven while you continue. Check your oil temperature (360 °F) and repeat with the remaining calamari. Serve hot with the chilled anchovy mayonnaise.

 


Gloria Dorson's Marinated Shrimp

 

A classic at all of our parties.

 

3          small    onions; sliced thin

2          Tbs     capers               

2          cloves  garlic; crushed

1          each     oil and vinegar         

1          lb         shrimp (raw, medium-size); cooked and shelled

 

Marinate and serve in bowl with toothpicks handy.  Small rye bread accompanies this well.                           

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Grilled Lemon Prawns with Béarnaise Sauce

 

1          cup      olive oil

1          Tbs      dried oregano, crumbled

1          Tbs      dried mint, crumbled

2          tsp       freshly grated lemon zest

2          tsp       coarse salt

2          tsp       freshly ground black pepper

24        x          prawns or jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined

3          Tbs      fresh lemon juice

Lemon wedges, for garnish

Béarnaise Sauce, recipe follows

 

In a large bowl stir together the oil, herbs, zest, salt, and pepper. Add the prawns, and toss them to coat them well.

Let the prawns marinate, covered and chilled, for 1 hour. Stir in the lemon juice, let the mixture stand at room temperature for 30 minutes, and drain the prawns in a sieve.

 

Grill the herb-coated prawns on a rack set about 4 inches over glowing coals for 3 minutes on each side, or until they are cooked through. (Alternatively, the prawns may be broiled on the rack of a broiler pan under a preheated broiler about 4 inches from the heat for 4 minutes on each side.) Divide the prawns among 8 plates and serve with lemon wedges and the béarnaise sauce.

 

Béarnaise Sauce:

½         cup      red wine vinegar

2          tsp       dried tarragon

1          x          shallot, minced

¼         cup      water

4          large    egg yolks

8          Tbs      unsalted butter (1 stick), chilled and cut into small pieces

Kosher salt

Lemon juice

 

Combine the vinegar, tarragon, and shallot in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook until almost evaporated. Remove from the heat and add the water.

Transfer the tarragon mixture to a small metal bowl and whisk together with the egg yolks. Place the bowl over a saucepan of boiling water (the water should not touch the bottom of the bowl) and whisk constantly until the mixture forms thick ribbons.

 

While whisking constantly, add the butter, little by little, waiting for each addition to be incorporated before adding any more, until a smooth sauce is formed. (You may need to remove the bowl from the water, from time to time, if the sauce gets too hot.)

 

Whisk in salt and lemon juice, to taste. (Add water to adjust consistency, if desired.)

 


Ham and Gruyere Thumbprints

 

½         cup      (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into large pieces

½         tsp       coarse salt

I           cup      all-purpose flour

4          large    eggs

½         tsp       freshly ground pepper

½         cup      finely chopped or ground Black Forest ham (2 oz)

1          cup      finely shredded Gruyère cheese, + 36 -inch cubes for centers (8 oz total)

 

1. Preheat oven to 400. Bring butter, salt, and 1 cup water to a boil in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally (butter will melt). Add flour; stir vigorously until incorporated. Continue to cook, stirring, until the mixture pulls away from sides and a thin film forms on bottom of pan, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat; let cool 2 minutes.

2. Transfer dough to a large bowl: add eggs one at a time, beating with a wooden spoon to incorporate each egg before adding the next, about 2 minutes. Stir in pepper, ham, and shredded cheese.

3. Spoon dough into a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch star tip. On a baking sheet lined with a Silpat baking mat or parchment paper; pipe 11/2-inch-wide rosettes, 1 inch apart. Make a deep indentation in the center of each with your thumb (dampen thumb to keep it from sticking to dough). Bake until crisp and golden, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer thumbprints to a wire rack to cool completely. Press a cheese cube into indentation of each. 4. Place on clean baking sheets; freeze (uncovered) until firm, about 1 hour. Transfer to an airtight container; freeze until ready to use, up to 6 weeks.

5. To serve, preheat oven to 425. Place thumbprints on ungreased baking sheets; bake until heated through and cheese is melted, 10 to 14 minutes. Serve warm.

Makes 3 Dozen


Hot Crab And Artichoke Dip

 

2          cups     chopped shallots

½         cup      chopped garlic

2          Tbs      olive oil

8          oz        chopped artichoke hearts

8          oz        Dungeness crab meat

4          cups     spinach

1          cup      heavy cream

1          tsp       crushed red pepper

½         cup      diced tomatoes

1          cup      Boursin

1          cup      bread crumbs

2          oz        Parmesan cheese

 

Preheat oven to 375 °F.

Sauté shallots and garlic in olive oil until caramelized. Add the artichokes and crab, and sauté. Add spinach, cream, crushed red pepper, tomatoes, and cheese. Stir. Let it simmer then puree mixture. Place in casserole dishes and top with bread crumbs and cheese.  Bake for 7 minutes or until cheese is browned.

 

Dip can be prepared (but not baked) 1 day ahead and chilled, covered.

 


Hot Spinach and Artichoke Dip

 

1          cup      thawed, chopped frozen spinach

1 ½                  cups     thawed, chopped frozen artichoke hearts

6          oz        cream cheese

¼                     cup      sour cream

¼         cup      mayonnaise

1/3       cup      grated Parmesan

½         tsp       red pepper flakes

¼         tsp       salt

¼         tsp       garlic powder

 

Boil spinach and artichokes in 1 cup of water until tender and drain. Discard liquid. Heat cream cheese in microwave for 1 minute or until hot and soft. Stir in rest of ingredients and serve hot.

 

Accompaniment: benne seed pita toasts (two pages from this one).

 

 


Hummus

 

1          16-oz   can garbanzo beans (chickpeas), rinsed and drained
¼         cup      tahini (sesame seed paste)
3          Tbs      water
2          Tbs      lemon juice
1          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil
1          clove    garlic, halved
½         tsp       kosher salt
½         tsp       cumin seeds, toasted and ground, or ½  tsp ground cumin
¼         tsp       cayenne pepper
1          Tbs      chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1          x          Lemon juice (optional)
1          x          Fresh flat-leaf parsley

In a food processor combine garbanzo beans, tahini, the water, the 2 Tbs lemon juice, the oil, garlic, kosher salt, cumin seeds, and cayenne pepper. Cover and process until smooth. Transfer to a medium bowl. Stir in the 1 Tbs parsley. If desired, stir in additional lemon juice to taste.

Garnish with additional parsley. Serve with baked pita chips or vegetable dippers, or use as a spread in a grilled vegetable sandwich.

* Note: To toast seeds, heat a small skillet over medium heat. Add seeds. Cook about 2 minutes or until toasted and aromatic, shaking skillet frequently. Place toasted seeds in a spice grinder and process until finely ground.

 

 


Layered Caviar Spread

 

Another party favorite, probably because of Ardith’s appreciation of it.  It might need a label describing what it is.

 

2          large    ripe avocados

3          Tbs      lemon juice

¼         tsp       freshly ground pepper            

1          x          salt, to taste

6          x          hard cooked eggs

6          Tbs      mayonnaise           

3          tsp       scraped onions

1          jar        (2 oz) black caviar

 

Peel and seed the avocados.  Mash and add the lemon juice, pepper and salt.  Set aside.

 

Mash the hard-cooked eggs with the mayonnaise.  Add the scraped onion to the eggs.  Spread the avocado mixture on the bottom of a shallow glass bowl, and put the egg mixture on top of that.  Then spread the caviar evenly over the top.  Refrigerate and serve with crackers.

 

Serves 8 – 10.

 


Layered Nacho Bean Dip

 

Another party favorite, probably because of Flip’s appreciation of it.  It sometimes needs a nice introduction of the dip to the party crowd to get them started – perhaps a label describing the contents and taste.

 

1          16 oz.  can refried beans        

1          pkg      taco seasoning          

8          oz        sour cream            

2          each     tomato; finely chopped

1          4-oz     can green chili peppers; peeled and chopped

8          oz        avocado dip           

1          small    onion; finely chopped

6          oz        black olives; finely chopped

8          oz        shredded cheddar cheese     

 

Blend beans and Seasoning                       

 

Spread in bottom of 8" or 9" square pan (or similar dish).  This is what it will be served in, so make it nice looking.  

 

Layer remaining ingredients in order given, spreading each layer over entire pan.                                 

 

Chill 6-8 hours

 

Serve with chips or crackers.                      

 


Melon and Proscuitto

 

This is the simplest of the melon and proscuitto dishes in here, not quite as fancy but just as tasty.  A cool, fresh appetizer or treat.

 

1          large    cantaloupe sliced into wedges, rind removed

½         lb         imported proscuitto, sliced paper thin

 

Real simple – Lay the cantaloupe on the serving plate, drape 2 or 3 slices of proscuitto over each one, serve.  If you would like, but certainly not necessary, you can garnish it with a splash of a nice berry syrup:

 

Berry Syrup:

1 qt berries, you should use the freshest berries you can find, we prefer to use

raspberries or blackberries

½ to 1 cup red wine, a cabernet sauvignon will work fine here

Sugar

Arrowroot

Cold water

 

Combine the berries and the red wine in a non-reactive saucepan and bring to a simmer. Let cook for about twenty minutes and adjust the flavor with sugar if necessary to achieve a balanced flavor. Combine some arrowroot with a little cold water and stir into the sauce to give it a nice shine and a little body. Let cool.

 

 

 

 


Mini Asian Crab Cakes

 

Okay, crab cakes in THIS book??  No, really, these are the best that I have ever tasted.  The combination of the warm, mild crab, the little bite of the wasabi, the tang of the ginger and the crunchiness of the cucumber all combine to make this a memorable appetizer. 

 

8          oz        jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over

¼         cup      mayonnaise, plus 3 Tbs for garnish

2          x          scallions, trimmed and finely chopped

2          T          soy sauce

2          t           wasabi paste

1          t           finely grated lime zest

½         cup      plus 2 Tbs plain breadcrumbs

½         cup      all-purpose flour

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

2          large    eggs

¼         cup      sesame seeds

2/3       cup      vegetable oil, plus more if needed

1          x          English cucumber, for garnish

½         cup      drained pickled ginger, for garnish

 

Flake crabmeat with a fork in a medium bowl; stir in 1/4 cup mayonnaise, scallions, soy sauce, 1/2 tsp wasabi, and zest. Stir in 2 Tbs breadcrumbs. Cover with plastic wrap; chill 1 hour.

 

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, and pepper; set aside. In a small bowl, beat eggs with 1 Tbs water; set aside. In a shallow bowl, stir together sesame seeds and remaining 1/2 cup breadcrumbs.

 

Form one scant Tbs crab mixture into a ball; dip in seasoned flour. Flatten into a 3/4-inch high cake about 1 1/4 inches in diameter. Repeat with remaining crab mixture.

Dip cakes in egg mixture, then roll in breadcrumb mixture.

 

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Add half the crab cakes; cook, turning once, until golden and crisp on both sides, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spatula, transfer to paper towel-lined plates to drain. Repeat with remaining cakes, adding more oil if needed. Let cool completely.

 

Meanwhile, stir together remaining 3 Tbs mayonnaise and 1 1/2 tsp wasabi. Using a vegetable peeler, make 24 (2-by-3/4-inch) ribbons from cucumber; fold each ribbon into thirds.  Makes about 2 dozen.

 

Dot each crab cake with 1/2 tsp wasabi mayonnaise; top with a slice of cucumber and a slice of ginger.

 


Mini Chicken B’Steeyas

 

An appetizer version of the classic Moroccan dish that is Chad’s and now Shelley’s specialty, Moroccan Pigeon Pie, Pastilla (Or Bastilla).

 

4          T          vegetable oil

1          whole, boneless chicken breast, 10 oz, halved

1          x          onion, finely chopped

½         tsp       ground ginger

¼         tsp       ground turmeric

1 ½      tsp       cinnamon, plus more for dusting

¾         cup      powdered sugar, plus more for dusting

2          x          eggs, lightly beaten

¼         cup      golden raisins, finely chopped (optional)

½         cup      whole blanched almonds, toasted

12        sheets (17 x 12) frozen phyllo dough, thawed

½         cup      1 stick) unsalted butter, for brushing

 

Heat 1 TB oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper on both sides; cook, turning once, until just cooked through, about 10 min. Transfer to a plate; let cool, then finely chop. Transfer chicken and any juices to a large bowl. Set aside.

 

Heat remaining 3 TB of oil in skillet over med heat. Add onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 4 min. Add ginger, turmeric and 1/2 tsp cinnamon; cook, stirring until fragrant, about 1 min.

 

Stir 1/4 c sugar into mixture. Add eggs, cook, stirring, until scrambled but still moist. Transfer to bowl with chicken. Stir in raisins, if desired. Season with salt and pepper; let cool.

 

In a food processor, pulse nuts until finely ground. Transfer to a bowl; stir in 1/2 c sugar and 1 tsp cinnamon.

 

On a clean work surface, unfold a sheet of phyllo with a short side facing you.; cover the remaining sheets with a damp cloth. Lightly brush with melted butter; sprinkle with about one-sixth of nut mixture. Lay another sheet on top; lightly brush with butter. Cut the stack lengthwise and the crosswise into thirds to make nine equal rectangles.

 

Working with one rectangle at a time, place 1 TB chicken mixture 1 inch from end of a short side, leaving a 1/2" border on long sides. Fold 1/2" of long sides over filling. Starting from the end with filling, roll into a log. Repeat the process to make 54 logs total. Brush with butter, and arrange seam side down on parchment paper lined baking sheet.

 

Freeze (uncovered) until firm, about 1 hour. Transfer to airtight containers until ready to use, up to 6 wks.

 

To serve, preheat oven to 425. Place logs on parchment lined baking sheet; bake, rotating sheets halfway through cooking, until golden brown and crisp, 12 to 15 min. Let cool slightly before dusting with sugar and cinnamon. Serve warm......


Mushroom Croissant

 

Another of the regulars at our parties, this is one that the girls request for special occasions.

 

3          pkg     cream cheese; (3 oz)

½         cup                  butter; softened

1 ½      cup                  all purpose flour; sifted

2          Tbs     butter              

1          med                 onion; chopped fine

½         lb        mushroom; chopped fine

1          pkg     cream cheese; (3 oz)

½         tsp      salt               

¼         tsp      thyme              

⅛         tsp      ground pepper          

1          each     egg               

1          tsp      water              

 

Combine first 3 ingredients and mix with wooden spoon until smooth.  Wrap and chill for 30 minutes.                         

                                      

Melt 2 tsp butter in skillet and add onions; sauté until golden; add mushrooms and cook over medium heat for about 3 minutes.  Lower heat and add cream cheese a bit at a time.  Stir until melted and add seasonings.   Cool.                                    

                                     

Pre-heat oven to 450 °F .  Take half of dough and roll to ⅛" thickness.  Cut circles 2 ½" in diameter.  Place ½ tsp filling on each circle.  Fold in half, press edges with fork.  Make small slit on top for steam to escape.                                  

                                     

Take egg/water mixture and brush tops of croissants with glaze.  Place on ungreased cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown on top.                                    

                                     

 Can be prepared in advance, cooled and put in freezer for up to 1 month.  Warm in 300 °F oven for 20 minutes.                    

 


Oven Baked Pecan-Crusted Chicken Fingers

 

1          cup      pecan pieces

½         cup      bread crumbs

1          Tbs      plus 2 tsp Essence, recipe in the Sauces and Rubs section

2          x          large eggs

¼         cup      olive oil

2          lbs        boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut lengthwise into strips

Chopped parsley, garnish

Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce, recipe follows

 

Preheat the oven to 375 °F. Lightly grease a large baking sheet.

In the bowl of a food processor, combine the pecan pieces, bread crumbs, and Essence. Pulse for 1 minute to combine. Pour into a shallow dish.

 

In a bowl, beat together the eggs, olive oil and remaining 2 tsp of Essence. One at a time, dip the chicken into the egg mixture then dredge in the pecan mixture, shaking to remove any excess. Transfer to the baking sheet and bake, turning once, until the chicken is cooked through and the crust is golden, 15 to 20 minutes.

 

Remove the chicken from the oven and transfer to 4 plates. Garnish with parsley and serve with the Honey Mustard Dipping sauce on the side.

 

Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce:

½         cup      mayonnaise

2          Tbs      honey

2          Tbs      Creole mustard or other hot whole-grain mustard

Pinch salt

Pinch cayenne, or to taste

 

In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients and stir well to combine. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use. (Honey-Mustard Dipping Sauce will keep, refrigerated in a covered non-reactive container, for 2 weeks.)

Yield: approximately 3/4 cup

 

 


Pan-Seared Diver's Scallops with Roasted Red Pepper Paint and Basil Oil

 

1          Tbs      vegetable oil

12        each     diver scallops, about 1 pound

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

½         cup      flour

2          Tbs      butter

½         cup      Roasted Red Pepper Paint, recipe follows

2          Tbs      Roasted Red Pepper Paint, recipe follows

2          tsp       rice wine vinegar

1          tsp       lemon juice

1 ½      Tbs      olive oil

4          oz        field greens or mache

¼         cup      Basil-Oil, recipe follows

 

Heat a large skillet or Sauté pan over high heat. When hot, add 1 Tbs of the vegetable oil and heat until hot but not quite smoking. Season the scallops with salt and pepper. Dredge in the instant flour, shaking off any excess. Add the scallops to the pan and sear for 2 minutes on the first side. Add the butter to the pan and swirl to evenly distribute. Turn the scallops and continue to cook for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes on the second side, or until golden brown and just cooked through. Transfer to 4 serving plates and season with salt and pepper.

 

In a small bowl combine 2 Tbs of the roasted red pepper paint with the rice wine vinegar, lemon juice and olive oil and whisk to combine. Toss the greens with the dressing and serve on top of the scallops. Drizzle some of the remaining Red Pepper Paint decoratively over the plates, then drizzle some of the basil oil over all. Serve immediately.

 

Red Pepper Paint:

1          lb         red peppers, about 2 large

3          cloves garlic, smashed

1          sprig    fresh thyme

1          each     bay leaf

1          cup      white wine

1          cup      rice wine vinegar

1          tsp       whole black peppercorns

 

Core and stem the red peppers and place them along with the other ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring the pan to a boil over medium-high heat and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the pan from the heat and, using a slotted spoon, transfer the peppers to the bowl of a blender. Strain the cooking liquid and discard the solids. Add 3 Tbs of the cooking liquid to the blender and process on low for 1 minute, or until smooth and thick. If the puree is too thick, thin by adding a bit more of the cooking liquid. Season the puree with a pinch of salt, then pass the puree through a fine mesh sieve and reserve until ready to use.

 

Yield: 1 cup

 

Basil-Oil:

10–12  leaves fresh basil

½         cup      extra-virgin olive oil

¼         tsp       fine sea salt

 

In a small bowl combine 1 cup of ice with 1 cup of water and set aside.

 

In a small saucepan bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add the basil leaves all at once, stirring to make sure they are all submerged. Cook for 5 to 10 seconds, then remove by using a skimmer or slotted spoon. Transfer the leaves immediately to an ice bath. Remove the leaves from the ice bath and squeeze firmly in your hands to release as much liquid as possible. Transfer the leaves to a blender along with the olive oil and salt, and process until the leaves are finely pureed, about 1 to 2 minutes. (Strain the basil oil through a fine sieve or coffee filter if a clear oil is desired.) Otherwise, place the oil in a small bowl and cover with plastic wrap.

 

Use the oil at room temperature, drizzled over salads, vegetables, sandwiches or grilled items.

 

Basil-oil will keep, refrigerated and tightly covered, for up to 1 week. (If strained, the oil will keep for up to 2 months, refrigerated and tightly covered.)

 

Note: if you want to kick up your basil oil, try adding a clove or 2 of minced garlic and a 1/4 tsp of crushed red pepper...this makes a great dipping oil for crusty French bread!

 


Prosciutto Purses

 

A beautiful way to present this taste, however, if you find that the tying of the purses is too difficult (it is tough), just toothpick it and garnish it with the chives for presentation.

 

1          med     cantaloupe (about 3 lbs)

1          med     honeydew (about 3 lbs)

1 ½      lbs        thinly sliced prosciutto (about 36 slices)

2          bnchs   fresh chives, blanch 36 and save remaining for garnish

 

To choose a ripe melon, give it a sniff and a good squeeze. Melon will be very fragrant and will give slightly to pressure when squeezed.  Working with 1 melon at a time, cut in 1/2. Gently scrape out seeds and membrane and discard. Using a melon baller, scoop out rounds from flesh and place in large bowl. Discard skin.

 

Keep the prosciutto loosely covered with plastic wrap to prevent them from drying out as you start to assemble 1 purse at a time. Place 1 melon ball in the center of a prosciutto slice, gather all sides to the top and secure with a blanched chive. It may be necessary to overlap a few pieces of prosciutto in order to completely wrap the melon ball. Place finished purse, seam side down onto a baking sheet and keep covered. Repeat with remaining prosciutto and melons. Can make it only up to 2 hours ahead of time because the salt in the prosciutto will break down the melon.

 

Scatter the chives onto a decorative platter. Place prosciutto purses on top and serve.

 


Rumaki

 

I know, I have said it many times before, but this is really another party favorite, always cleaned up first. 

 

¼         lb         chicken livers, trimmed and rinsed, or sea scallops

¼         cup      soy sauce

1          Tbs      finely grated peeled fresh ginger, or powdered

2          Tbs      packed light brown sugar

12        x          canned water chestnuts, drained and halved; horizontally

8          slices   bacon (1/2 lb), cut crosswise into; thirds

24        x          wooden toothpicks

 

Cut chicken livers or sea scallops into 24 (roughly 1/2-inch) pieces.  Stir together soy sauce, ginger and brown sugar. Shelley leaves the brown sugar out of this step, and instead rolls the assembled items in the brown sugar before broiling.  Add livers/scallops and bacon and toss to coat. Marinate, covered and chilled, 1 hour.  I always use sea scallops instead of chicken livers, simply because the chicken livers have a strong and distinctive flavor that, although I happen to love, many people do not.  If you have time, you might try half and half.

 

While livers/scallops and bacon marinate, soak toothpicks in cold water 1 hour. Drain well.

 

Preheat broiler.

 

Remove livers/scallops and bacon from marinade and discard marinade. Place 1 piece of bacon on a work surface and put 1 piece of livers/scallops and 1 chestnut in center. Wrap bacon around livers/scallops and chestnut and secure with a toothpick. Make the remaining rumaki in same manner.  If you have left out the brown sugar from the marinade, now is the time you will want to roll the rumaki in the brown sugar, using the toothpick to hold it as you roll.

 

Broil rumaki on rack of a broiler pan 2 inches from heat, turning once, until bacon is crisp and livers/scallops are cooked but still slightly pink inside (unwrap 1 to check for doneness), 5 to 6 minutes. Serve immediately.

 

Makes 24 hors d'oeuvres.

 

 

 

 


Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms

 

1          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil, one turn of the pan

24        large    gourmet stuffing mushroom caps, stems removed and reserved brushed with damp towel

Salt and pepper

Stuffing:

1 ½      tsp       extra-virgin olive oil, half a turn of the pan

¾         lb         sweet bulk Italian sausage

4          cloves  garlic, chopped

20        stems   mushrooms, finely chopped

1          rib        celery and green, leafy top from the heart of the stalk, chopped

½         x          small onion, chopped

½         x          small red bell pepper, seeded and chopped

1          10-oz   box chopped frozen spinach, defrosted and squeezed dry

3          x          slices white bread, toasted and buttered, chopped into small dice

1/3       cup      grated Parmigiano or Romano, 2 handfuls

 

 

Preheat oven to 500 °F.

 

Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add oil and mushroom caps and season caps with salt and pepper. Sauté caps 5 to 7 minutes, until they are lightly browned and tender on edges. Turn caps up and let juices drain away from caps. Transfer caps to a small nonstick baking sheet. Wipe out skillet and return to heat. Add a touch of oil and sausage to the hot skillet. Brown and crumble sausage for 3 minutes. In a food processor pulse and chop the garlic, add mushroom stems and pulse to chop the mushroom stems.

 

Add celery, onion and red bell pepper to the mushrooms and pulse to chop. Remove mixture from the processor and sauté veggies and mushrooms over medium high heat another 3 to 5 minutes. Add dry, defrosted spinach and stir into stuffing. Add chopped bread and cheese to the pan and toss stuffing until bread is moist and stuffing is combined, 2 or 3 minutes.

 

Fill caps with stuffing using a small scoop or large spoon. Place caps in hot oven and reduce heat to 450 °F. Bake 6 to 8 minutes to crisp edges of stuffing and set stuffing in mushrooms. Transfer stuffed mushrooms to a serving plate.

 

 


Sesame Chicken Satay

 

An absolute favorite every time we have served it, this is very simple to fix.

 

1          cup      rice wine vinegar

1          cup      creamy peanut butter

1          cup      soy sauce

¼         cup      vegetable oil

Sesame oil

1/3       cup      sugar

2          Tbs      freshly grated ginger

25        x          chicken tenders, halved on the bias

½         cup      chopped scallions plus 2 Tbs, for garnish

½         cup      chopped cilantro leaves

¼         cup      black sesame seeds, for garnish

1          Tbs      cilantro, chopped for garnish

 

6-inch bamboo skewers

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F.

 

Combine vinegar, peanut butter, soy sauce, vegetable oil, sesame oil, to taste, sugar and ginger in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade and process until smooth.

 

Toss 1 1/2 cups of the peanut butter mixture with the chicken tenders in a bowl until the chicken is well coated. Spread the chicken out in a baking pan in a single layer. Bake until the tenders are firm to the touch, about 30 minutes. Let cool.

 

Thread a skewer into each tender. Arrange on a platter and garnish with sesame seeds and chopped herbs. Put the remaining sauce into a small bowl and serve.

 


South of the Border Roll-ups

 

A very nice and easy party favorite (seem to have a lot of these, don’t we?)

 

1          pkg      cream cheese (8 oz)       

1          small   can chopped green chilies    

2-3       slices   onion; chopped fine

1          Tbs     (heaping)) sour cream      

1          dash    garlic powder          

1          pkg      large tortilla shells      

 

Cream ingredients together (not tortilla shells).  Spread thinly to the edge of a flour tortilla and roll the tortilla up.  Repeat for as many tortillas as it takes.  Cover and refrigerate overnight or for the afternoon.  Slice into bite size pieces (about ½ an inch wide) and serve with picanté sauce.                            

 


Spinach Parmesan Balls

 

1          lb         package frozen chopped spinach, thawed

5          x          eggs

I           large    onion, minced

10        Tbs      margarine, melted

1          cup      shredded Parmesan

2          cloves  garlic, minced

½         tsp       dried thyme leaves

½         tsp       cayenne

1 ¾      cups     Italian-style bread crumbs

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F.

Squeeze the excess water from the spinach and put it in a large mixing bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well by hand.* Form the mixture into 1-inch balls, either by hand or with a small ice cream scoop. Place the balls closely together on a baking sheet.

Cook in the top half of the oven until firm to the touch, about 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool 5 minutes, and then transfer to a platter and serve immediately.

 

Yields 30 to 40 spinach Parmesan balls

 

You might try wearing latex gloves while mixing and forming the balls.

 

 

 

 

 


Toasts with Fresh Figs, Goat Cheese, and Pomegranate Molasses

 

This recipe is one of our absolute favorite appitazers from our favorite French Bistro.  Seasonal, unfortunately, so start looking for fresh figs in the early summer, good until maybe October.

 

1          each     Baguette, plain

12        ea         Fresh figs, sliced. 1/2 per appetizer desired.

1          x          soft goat cheese

1          x          pomegranate molasses

 

Cut slices of baguette.  Toast slices in toaster oven, alternatively, bake in 350 degree oven to dry out, flipping over once if baking on cookie sheet.

 

Spread with goat cheese.  Arrange fig slices on goat cheese.  Drizzle with pomegranate molasses.

 

 

 

 


Tomato and Mozzarella

 

3          fresh    Italian plum tomatoes

¼         cup      chopped fresh basil

¼         lb         fresh mozzarella

4          Tbs      olive oil

Salt and pepper

 

ALL of the flavors come out with this dish, so it is VERY important to use the best of ingredients.  Tomatoes – from the local farmer’s market or the back yard.  FRESH Basil, from the farmer’s market, the back yard or the fresh leaves from the supermarket.  FRESH Mozzarella, that’s the big white ball of cheese in water.  Buffalo Mozzarella is the best, but you may have to call around to find it.  Trader Joe’s and other Fresh Markets usually carry it, but your standard grocery store will not.  Try several different types from different markets until you find one you really like.  Olive Oil – use a very good extra virgin olive oil, perhaps even basil flavored, but this choice will make a lot of difference to the overall flavor of the dish as well.

 

Thick slice the tomatoes, place a thin slice of cheese on each one, and lay them out on the serving plate.  Sprinkle with the basil leaves, drizzle with the olive oil, and lightly dust with the salt and pepper (try it without the salt and pepper first to see if you like it the original way).  You can stick toothpicks in each one if you want it to be a bit less messy (like for a party) or leave as is for  family or close friends around the table.

 

 


Tomato and Mozzarella Bruschetta

 

3          x          plum tomatoes, finely chopped

½         x          red onion, finely chopped

2          Tbs      capers

¼         cup      chopped fresh basil

¼         lb         fresh mozzarella, finely chopped

2          Tbs      balsamic or red wine vinegar

4          Tbs      olive oil

Salt and pepper

4          slices    toasted Italian bread

 

Preheat broiler. In a large bowl combine tomatoes, onion, capers, basil and mozzarella. Stir in balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Top toasted bread with the mixture and place on baking sheet. Broil until cheese melts. Serve hot.

 

 


Venetian Shrimp and Scallops

 

Shrimp and Scallops:

1          lb         sea scallops

¼         cup      flour, seasoned with salt and pepper

1          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

2          Tbs      butter

2          cloves garlic, chopped

1          large    shallot, finely chopped

½         tsp       crushed red pepper flakes

1          cup      dry white wine

1          cup      chicken broth or stock

1          can       (14-oz) diced tomatoes in juice

¼         tsp       saffron threads

1          lb         large shrimp, peeled and deveined

12        leaves fresh basil, shredded or torn

1          each     lemon, zested

Hot, crusty bread, for plate mopping

 

Serving Suggestions: Asparagus with Prosciutto

 

Dessert Suggestions: Lemon sorbet dessert cups

Lightly coat the sea scallops in flour seasoned with salt and pepper. Discard remaining flour.

 

Preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add oil (1 turn around the pan) and butter. When butter melts into oil, add scallops. Brown scallops 2 minutes on each side, then remove from pan.

 

Add an additional drizzle of olive oil to the pan and add the garlic, shallots, and crushed red pepper flakes. Reduce heat a little and Sauté garlic and shallots 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add wine to the pan and free up any pan drippings. Reduce wine 1 minute, then add stock, tomatoes and saffron threads. When liquids come to a bubble, add shrimp and cook 3 minutes. Return scallops to the pan and cook shrimp and scallops 2 to 3 minutes longer. Transfer shrimp and scallops to a warm serving dish and top with basil and lemon zest. Pass plenty of bread to enjoy the juices.


Warm Brie with Fugi Apple, Pear and Melba Toasts

 

1          x          large Fugi apple

1          x          large red or brown skinned pear, slightly underripe

1          x          wedge lemon

1          lb         individual wheel brie cheese

24        x          sesame Melba toast rounds, any brand

 

Quarter apple and pear lengthwise and cut into each quarter on an angle to remove the core. Slice apple and pear into 1/4-inch thick slices. Squeeze a little lemon juice over the fruit to slow browning.

 

Cut the top rind off the brie and place in the microwave on high for 60 seconds.

 

Depending on the ripeness of the cheese, it will take 60 to 90 seconds on high to heat and melt. If brie is not yet soft and hot after 1 minute, place it back in microwave for another 30 seconds on high.

 

Serve the softened, warm brie with a platter of fruit and Melba toasts for dipping and spreading. Reheat brie if it tightens up for 20 to 30 seconds at a time on high.

 

 

 


West Town Tavern Potato Chips

 

2          large    russet potatoes, peel on, about 1 pound

2          quarts  canola oil, for deep-frying

1          tsp       white truffle oil

2          Tbs      Balsamic SYRUP (located in the Sauces section)

1          Tbs      chopped fresh rosemary leaves

3          Tbs      grated Parmesan

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

 

NOTE: I tend to save time by simply buying a bag of “Krunchers” original style potato chips or other thicker rustic cut chips.  Or, you can make them fresh:

 

Scrub potatoes well and pat dry.  Slice the peel-on potatoes crosswise 1/8 inch thick.  A mandoline makes this easier, but a sharp knife and steady hand does the same.  In a 6-quart stockpot over medium heat, add the oil and heat to 350.  Fluff up the potato slices to separate them and add them in batches to the hot oil.  Don’t add too many slices a once or the oil temperature will drop and the chips won’t be as crisp.  Use a deep-fry thermometer to make sure the oil stays at 350.  Deep fry the chips until crisp and golden.  Drain on paper towels and transfer to a large bowl.  Drizzle potato chips with white truffle oil and Balsamic syrup, then sprinkle with rosemary and Parmesan.  Season chips with salt and pepper.  Toss well to distribute seasonings.  Serve immediately.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Wrapped Figs With Camembert

 

A nice appetizer for a romantic candlelit meal, alternatively can be scaled up for a formal dinner party.

 

4          x          figs

2          oz        camembert cheese, cut into chunks

8          slices    pancetta

1          dash     port wine ( 1 splash)

1          drizzle balsamic vinegar

3          x          fresh thyme or 3 basil leaves

 

 

Preheat the oven to 425°F.

Split open the figs and stuff each one with a piece of camembert.

Wrap each fig with two slices of pancetta. Place on a baking tray and cook in the oven for 5-6 minute, or until the pancetta is golden and the cheese melted.

Remove the figs from the oven and drizzle with a little port and balsamic vinegar.

Sprinkle with thyme or basil leaves, to serve.

 

 

 

 

 


Soups, Salads and Chili Dishes

 

                                                  

 

 

Andouille and Chicken Jambalaya

 

½         cup      vegetable oil

3          cups     chopped onions

1          cup      chopped bell peppers

3          tsp       salt

1 ¼      tsp       cayenne

1          lb         andouille or smoked sausage cut crosswise into 1/4 inch slices

1 ½      lbs        boneless white and dark chicken meat, cut into 1 inch cubes

3          x          bay leaves

3          cups     medium-grain white rice

6          cups     water

1          cup      chopped green onions

 

Heat the oil in a large cast-iron Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onions, bell peppers, 2 tsp of the salt and 1 tsp of the cayenne. Stirring often, brown the vegetables for about 20 minutes, or until they are caramelized and dark brown in color. Scrape the bottom and sides of the pt to loosen any browned particles. Add the sausage and cook, stirring often for 10 to 15 minutes, scraping the bottom and sides of the pot to loosen any browned particles. Season the chicken with the remaining 1 tsp salt and remaining 1/4 tsp cayenne. Add the chicken and the bay leaves to the pot. Brown the chicken for 8 to 10 minutes, scrapping the bottom of the pot to loosen any browned particles. Add the rice and stir for 2 to 3 minutes to coat it evenly. Add the water, stir to combine, and cover. Cook over medium heat for 30 to 35 minutes, without stirring, or until the rice is tender and the liquid has been absorbed. Remove the pot from the heat and let stand, covered for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the bay

leaves. Stir in the green onions and serve.

 

 

 


Ardith’s Turkey Chili

 

1          lb         turkey (dark meat); ground

1          Tbs     olive oil            

1          large    onion; chopped

1          large                green pepper; chopped

1          can       large diced tomatoes          

1          can       Kidney beans           

1          can       (small) mushrooms; pieces and stems

1          tsp      chili powder           

½         tsp      cumin              

1          pinch   cinnamon             

2          cups     water              

2          cans     small v-8 or tomato juice       

1          ea         salt and pepper to taste     

 

In large cooking pot, fry turkey in olive oil until browned through.  Remove and fry onion and green pepper.  When done, add turkey back in.  Add all other ingredients.  Simmer for 1 ½ - 2 hours or until much of the liquid is reduced.                            

 

 

 

 

 

 


Asian Pear Salad

 

4          cups     mixed frisee, baby arugula, and other small greens (about 11 oz)

8          x          dates, pitted and quartered lengthwise

8          slices    prosciutto (about 4 oz), sliced into ¼ inch-wide slices

8          sprigs   mint, leaves picked from stems (about 1 cup)

1          x          Asian pear, cored and sliced into ½-inch wedges

2          Tbs      freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 1 lemon)

2          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

1          x          course salt and freshly ground pepper           

 

In a large bowl, toss together greens, dates, prosciutto, mint and pear.  In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice and oil; season with salt and pepper.  Pour mixture over salad.  Toss to combine well, and serve immediately.

 

 

 

 

 


Baked Potato Soup

 

3          Tbs      butter

1 ½      cups     finely diced leeks

1 ½      Tbs      minced garlic

6          cups     chicken stock, hot

4          large    baked potatoes, halved. pulp scooped out and put through a ricer

1 ½      cups     buttermilk

½         cup      sour cream

½         cup      freshly grated Parmesan

2 ½      tsp       kosher salt

1          tsp       freshly ground pepper

2          Tbs      Sherry vinegar

¼         cup      minced chives

2          strips    bacon, fried crisp

½         cup      Parmesan cheese, grated

 

In a large saucepot, over high heat melt the butter and add the leeks and garlic. Cook over medium heat until they are translucent. Add the hot stock and whisk to combine.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the riced potatoes, buttermilk, sour cream, and grated Parmesan. Add this mixture to the soup stirring constantly. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat and add the Sherry vinegar.

 

Ladle into bowls and garnish with chives, bacon and cheese.

 

 

 

 

 


Beck’s Salad

 

Ardith’s recipe that everyone loves.

 

12        oz        fresh spinach, steps removed (just pull them off

2          Tbs     sesame seeds           

½         single  Bermuda or Vidalia onion, chopped finely or thin strips

2          Tbs     scallions, chopped

1          pint     strawberries, not too thinly sliced

5          single  strips crisp bacon, crushed

 

¼         cup                  olive oil            

2          Tbs     wine vinegar           

1          Tbs     sugar              

1          tsp      salt               

1          dash    pepper              

1          dash    Tabasco sauce

 

Mix first 6 items for salad, last 6 for dressing.  Add dressing just before serving.                              

 


Black Bean Soup with Cumin

 

2          cups     dried black beans, washed and picked over

8          cups     water

¼         cup      olive oil or 4 Tbs unsalted butter

2          large    onions, diced

6          cloves  garlic, minced or pureed

1          large    jalapeno pepper, stemmed, seeded, if desired and finely chopped

2          tsp       salt

6          cups     vegetable stock

1 ½      cups     Salsa Fresca for garnish, recipe to follow

1          cup      Crema, recipe to follow, Crème Fraiche or sour cream, for garnish

2          Tbs      ground cumin

 

In a large saucepan over high heat, place the water and black beans. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook until the beans are soft, about 1 hour. Remove from the heat. In another large saucepan or stockpot, heat the olive oil or butter over medium low heat. Cook the onions until lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Add the garlic, cumin, jalapeno and salt and cook, stirring constantly, until the garlic's aroma is released, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the black beans and their liquid and mix well. Pour in the vegetable stock. Turn up the heat and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, an additional 30 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a blender in batches and puree until smooth, pulsing the machine on and off until it begins to liquefy. Ladle the hot soup into bowls and garnish each serving with a generous tablespoonful of salsa fresca and crema, crème fraiche or sour cream.

 

SALSA FRESCA

4          med     ripe tomatoes, cored, seeded, and finely diced

¼         x          red onion, minced

2          x          jalapeno peppers, stemmed, seeded, if desired and minced

1          bunch  cilantro, leaves only, chopped

2          Tbs      lime juice

¾         tsp       salt

1          x          Pinch of freshly ground pepper

 

Combine all of the ingredients in a mixing bowl. Stir and toss well, and serve. Store in a covered container in the refrigerator no more than a day.

 

CREMA

2          cups     heavy cream

¼         cup      buttermilk

 

Whisk the cream and buttermilk together. Cover and set in a warm place for 8 hours. Crema may be kept in the refrigerator as long as a week.

 


Black-Eyed Pea Jambalaya

 

4          oz        tasso sausage, diced into small pieces

¼         lb         chorizo sausage, sliced in half lengthwise and cut into1/4-inch pieces

¼         lb         smoked sausage, sliced in half lengthwise and cut into 1/4-inch pieces

1          cup      chopped yellow onion (1 medium onion)

½         tsp       salt

¼         tsp       cayenne

4          cloves  garlic

4          x          bay leaves

5          sprigs   fresh thyme

3          tsp       finely chopped parsley

12        cups     chicken stock

1          lb         black-eyed peas

1          Tbs      minced garlic

½         lb         medium shrimp, peeled, deviened and chopped

Essence, recipe in the Sauces and Rubs section

½         lb         long grain rice

¼         cup      chopped green onions

 

In a large pot over medium heat, add the olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the tasso, chorizo and sausage, render for 5 minutes. Stir in the onions, salt, cayenne, garlic, bay leaves, thyme and parsley. Sauté for 5 minutes, or until the onions are wilted. Stir in the chicken stock, peas and garlic. Bring the liquid up to a simmer and cook for 1 hour. Sprinkle the shrimp with Essence to season. Add the shrimp and rice to the mixture. Cook for an additional 30 minutes or until the peas and rice are tender. Stir in the green onions. Serve warm.

 

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

 

 


Broccoli, Red Pepper, And Cheddar Chowder

 

1          small    head broccoli (1/2 lb)

1          large    boiling potato (1/2 lb)

1          large    onion, chopped

1 ¼      lb         red bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

l           large    garlic clove, finely chopped

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

1          tsp       ground cumin

1          tsp       salt

¼         tsp       black pepper

½         tsp       dry mustard

2          Tbs      all-purpose flour

¾         cup      heavy cream

6          oz        sharp Cheddar, coarsely grated (1 1/2 cups)

 

Discard tough lower third of broccoli stem. Peel remaining stem and finely chop. Cut remaining broccoli into very small (1-inch) florets. Cook florets in a large pot of boiling salted water until just tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice water to stop cooking, then drain. Reserve 3 cups cooking water for chowder.

 

Peel potato and cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Cook potato, onion, bell pepper, broccoli stems, and garlic in butter in a 3- to 4-quart heavy pot over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until onion is softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Add cumin, salt, pepper, and mustard and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add flour and cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Add reserved cooking water and simmer (partially covered), stirring occasionally, until potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in cream and cheese and cook, stirring, until cheese is melted, then season with salt and pepper.

 

Purée about 2 cups of chowder in a blender until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids) and return to pot. Add florets and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 2 minutes.

 

Makes about 6 cups or 4 servings.

 

 


Butternut Squash Soup with Hazelnut Cream

 

Luscious, but a bit time consuming.  Worth it in the long run for a nice fall or winter dish.

 

1/3       cup      heavy cream

2          Tbs.     finely chopped toasted hazelnuts

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

2          Tbs.     unsalted butter

1          each     yellow onion, chopped

2          cups     unsalted chicken stock, warmed, plus more as needed

1          jar        (17 oz.) butternut squash puree

Freshly grated nutmeg, to taste

 

Be sure to toast and skin the hazelnuts before adding them to the cream. Toasting brings out the rich flavor of the nuts and loosens the skins, which can taste bitter. Place the nuts in a dry fry pan over medium heat and toast, shaking the pan or stirring occasionally, until the nuts are fragrant, 10 to 15 minutes. Or spread the nuts in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast in a 325 °F oven, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes. While the nuts are still warm, wrap them in a kitchen towel and rub vigorously to remove the skins. It’s OK if a few bits of skin still cling to the nuts.

 

In a saucepan over medium heat, warm the cream until steam starts to rise. Remove from the heat, add the hazelnuts and let cool. Season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

 

In a soup pot over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until tender and translucent, 4 to 6 minutes. Add the 2 cups stock and the squash puree and bring to a simmer, stirring, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring, for 12 to 15 minutes. Using a blender or stick blender, puree the soup, adding more stock if the soup is too thick. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg.

 

Whisk the hazelnut cream until lightly foamy. Ladle the soup into 4 bowls and garnish with the hazelnut cream. Serves 4.

 

 

 


Caesar Salad

 

1          x          loaf Italian bread

3          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil, plus 1/2 cup

1          clove    garlic, minced, plus 3 cloves peeled

½         tsp       dried oregano

Salt and pepper

3          x          anchovy fillets

2          tsp       Dijon mustard

½         x          lemon, juiced

2          Tbs      red wine vinegar

1          tsp       Worcestershire sauce

2          x          romaine lettuce hearts, cut in 2-inch pieces

2          bnchs   watercress, trimmed

1          x          hard boiled egg

1          cup      shredded Pecorino Romano

½         cup      chopped parsley

1          lb         cooked grilled chicken, sliced in strips (optional)

 

Remove the crust from the Italian bread then cut the loaf into cubes. Place the bread cubes in a mixing bowl. In a small pan over medium heat, add the oil, minced garlic, and oregano. Cook for 2 minutes to infuse the flavors. Pour the oil over the bread cubes and toss. Season with salt and pepper. Spread the bread cubes in a single layer on a baking pan and bake for 10 minutes in a preheated 400-degree F oven. The croutons should be crisp but not too hard to pierce with a fork.

In a mini food processor, combine remaining garlic, anchovy, mustard, lemon, vinegar, Worcestershire, salt and pepper. Process for 30 seconds to make a paste. Add the olive oil and process again until combined. Combine the romaine and watercress in a large salad bowl. Grate the hard boiled egg into the bowl. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss to coat the leaves. Add the cheese, croutons, parsley and chicken, toss well. Season with salt and pepper, and serve immediately.

 


Cajun Gumbo

 

1          whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces

3          lbs        okra

1          cup      butter, divided

1          med     onion, chopped

1          x          green bell pepper, chopped

3          stalks   celery, chopped

1/2       tsp       dried basil

1/2       tsp       dried thyme

2          x          bay leaves

2          cloves  garlic, minced

1          lb         sausage, cooked and cut into 1/2 inch pieces

1          lb         ham, cooked and cubed

1          lb         small or medium shrimp, washed and deveined

1          lb         crab meat, cleaned

File powder

Hot pepper sauce

Cooked rice, for serving

 

Boil chicken pieces in 1 gallon of lightly salted water for approximately 1 hour, or until done. Reserve the chicken broth for the base of the gumbo.

Wash okra and dry with a paper towel. Cut off the ends of the okra and slice into round pieces. Sauté the pieces in a skillet with 1/2-cup of the butter until all of the slime has left the okra. This takes 1/2 hour to 45 minutes. You must stir the okra throughout this process to keep it from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

 

Sauté the onion, green pepper, and celery in remaining 1/2-cup butter until lightly browned. Place the cooked okra and onion mixture into the chicken broth. Add the basil, thyme, bay leaves, and garlic to the broth. Bring to a boil and let simmer for 15 minutes.

 

Remove skin and bones from chicken, and cut into bite sized pieces, and set aside. Add the chicken, sausage, and ham to the broth at the same time. Return mixture to a boil. Add the shrimp and crabmeat, and cook for another 5 minutes. Season with file, black pepper, and hot pepper, to taste.

 

Serve with rice.

 


Chicken and Andouille Smoked Sausage Gumbo (Creole Stew)

 

1          cup      finely chopped onion

1          cup      finely chopped green bell pepper

2          lbs        okra, chopped

¾         cup      finely chopped celery

1 ¼      cups     flour

½         tsp       salt

½         tsp       garlic powder

½         tsp       ground red pepper

Vegetable oil

1 ½      qt         chicken stock

1          cup      chopped tomatoes

2          cups     tomato juice

1          Tbs      file powder

½         lb         andouille sausage

1          tsp       minced garlic

 

In a bowl, combine the onions, bell peppers, okra and celery; set aside.

 

Combine all but 1/2 cup of the flour, the salt, garlic powder, and red pepper in a plastic bag, add the chicken pieces and shake until chicken is well coated. In large heavy skillet heat 1 1/2-inches of oil until very hot (375 °F.) Fry the chicken until the crust is brown on both sides and meat is cooked, about 5 to 8 minutes per side; drain on paper towels.

 

Remove the pan from the heat and pour the hot oil into a cup, leaving as many brown particles in the pan as possible. Scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to loosen any stuck particles, then return 1/2 cup of the hot oil to the pan. Place the pan over high heat. Using a long handled whisk, gradually stir in remaining flour. Cook, whisking constantly, until a roux is formed and is a dark red-brown. Remove from heat and add the reserved vegetable mixture, stirring constantly until the roux stops getting darker. Return to a low heat and cook until the vegetables are soft.

 

In a separate large pot, bring the chicken stock to a boil. Add the roux by spoonfuls to the boiling stock, stirring between each addition. Reduce to a simmer and add the andouille and remaining ingredients, except file powder. Simmer for 45 minutes. While gumbo is simmering, bone the cooked chicken and cut meat into 1/2-inch dice. Add to the gumbo. Add file powder 5 minutes before serving and continue to simmer for 5 minutes.

 

Serve gumbo on a mound of cooked rice.

 

 


Chunky Potato Soup

 

3          med     red potatoes

2          cups     water

1          small    onion

3          Tbs      butter

3          Tbs      all purpose flour

1          pinch   crushed red pepper flakes

1          pinch   black pepper

3          cups     milk

½         tsp       sugar

1          cup      shredded cheese, Cheddar, Mozzarella, etc.

1          cup      cubed cooked ham

 

Peel potatoes and cut into 1-inch cubes.  Bring water to a boil in a large saucepan.  Add potatoes and cook until tender.  Drain, reserving liquid.  Set aside potatoes.  Measure 1 cup cooking liquid, adding water if necessary; set aside.

 

Peel and finely chop onion.  Melt butter in saucepan over medium heat.  Add onion to saucepan; cook, stirring frequently, until onion is translucent and tender, but not brown.

 

Add flour to saucepan; season with pepper flakes and black pepper to taste.  Cook 3 to 4 minutes.  Gradually add potatoes, reserved 1 cup cooking liquid, milk and sugar to onion mixture in saucepan; stir well.  Add cheese and ham.  Simmer over low heat 30 minutes, stirring frequently.

 

 

 

 


Corn and Crab Chowder

 

2          Tbs      vegetable oil or extra-virgin olive oil

4          Tbs      butter

3          each     all-purpose potatoes, peeled and diced

2          ribs      celery, chopped

1          med     yellow onion, chopped

1          small    red bell pepper, seeded and diced

1          each     bay leaf, fresh or dried

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1          Tbs      Old Bay seasoning blend

4          Tbs      all-purpose flour

2          cups     vegetable or chicken stock or broth

1          qt         whole milk

4          cups     corn kernels, cut fresh from the cob or, frozen kernels

12        oz        cooked lump crab meat

4          small    bread boules, 6 inches, hollowed out, preferably sour dough

 

Toppings:

Oyster crackers

Hot cayenne pepper sauce

Sliced scallions

 

Heat a deep pot over moderate heat. Add oil and butter. As you chop your veggies, add them to the pot: potatoes, celery, onion, and red bell pepper. Add bay leaf to the pot. Season vegetables with salt and pepper and Old Bay seasoning. Sauté veggies 5 minutes, then sprinkle in flour. Cook flour 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in broth and combine. Stir in milk and combine. Bring soup up to a bubble. Add corn and crab meat and simmer soup 5 minutes. Adjust the soup seasonings. Remove bay leaf. Ladle soup into bread bowls or soup bowls and top with oyster crackers, hot sauce and sliced scallions.

 

 

 

 


Crab Chowder

 

2          slices    bacon

1          med     onion

2          med     boiling potatoes

½         cup      water

½         lbs        jumbo lump crab meat

3          cups     whole milk

1/8       tsp       cayenne, or to taste

 

Garnish: chopped fresh flat-leafed parsley leaves

 

Chop bacon and in a 2-quart heavy saucepan cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp. Transfer bacon with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain, reserving fat in pan.

 

While bacon is cooking, cut onion into 1/4-inch dice. Peel potatoes and cut into 1/4-inch dice. Stir onion, potatoes, and water into bacon fat and simmer, covered, until potatoes are tender and most of water is evaporated, about 15 minutes.

 

While mixture is simmering, pick over crab meat, removing any bits of shell and cartilage. Stir milk and cayenne into mixture and return just to a simmer. Add crab and salt and pepper to taste and bring chowder to a simmer.

 

Serve chowder garnished with parsley and bacon.

 

Makes about 4 cups.

 

 


Crawfish Etouffee

 

6          Tbs      butter

4          Tbs      flour

2          cups     chopped onions

½         cup      chopped celery

½         cup      chopped bell pepper

6          cloves garlic, minced

2          each     bay leaves

2          sprigs   fresh thyme

2 ½      cups     fish or shrimp stock

1          cup      peeled, seeded and diced tomatoes

1 ½      tsp       salt

½         tsp       crushed red pepper

Hot pepper sauce

2          Tbs      dry sherry

2          tsp       Worcestershire sauce

2          lbs        crawfish tails, with the fat

½         each     lemon, juiced

1          cup      chopped green onions

¼         cup      chopped parsley

 

Cooked white rice, for serving

In a large, heavy saucepan, melt 4 Tbs of the butter and whisk in flour to combine well. Continue to cook, stirring constantly, until roux is a peanut butter color.

 

Add onions, celery, bell pepper, garlic, bay leaves, and thyme and cook until vegetables are soft, about 6 to 8 minutes. Add stock, tomatoes, salt, red pepper, hot sauce, sherry and Worcestershire sauce and bring to a boil.

 

Skim surface, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook uncovered for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

 

Add crawfish tails and fat, lemon juice, green onions, and parsley and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add remaining butter and stir to combine well. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Serve over hot rice.

 

 

 


Crunch Salad

 

2          x          handfuls alfalfa and broccoli sprouts

2          x          handfuls mung bean sprouts

2          x          handfuls sunflower salad shoots

Mixed edible flowers

1          bnch    fresh mint, leaves picked

2          x          baby courgettes (zucchini), sliced thinly lengthways

2          x          red chicory, cut in 1/2 then finely shredded

1          x          bunch baby carrots, sliced thinly lengthways

½         x          fennel bulb, halved and sliced finely

1          bnch    French breakfast radishes, sliced lengthways

1          head    celery, outer stalks and ends removed, halved and finely sliced lengthways

For the dressing:

2          Tbs      French mustard

4          Tbs      crème fraiche

1          Tbs      olive oil

2-3       Tbs      white wine vinegar

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

 

 

Mix all the vegetables together in a bowl. Now make your dressing by mixing all the ingredients together and toss the dressing with the salad.

 

 


Gumbo Ya Ya

 

1          6 lb      hen

8          cups     water

2          med     yellow onions, quartered

2          ribs      celery, each cut into 6 pieces

2          x          bay leaves

1          Tbs      salt PLUS

1 ½      tsp       salt

1 ½      tsp       cayenne pepper

1 ½      cups     vegetable oil

1 ½      cups     bleached all-purpose flour

2          cups     chopped yellow onions

1          cup      chopped green bell peppers

1          cup      chopped celery

½         lb         andouille sausage, finely chopped

1          lb         andouille sausage, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch thick slices

2          Tbs      chopped green onions or scallions

2          Tbs      chopped fresh parsley leaves

Cooked white rice, for serving

 

In a large, heavy pot place the hen, water, quartered onions, celery pieces, bay leaves, 1 Tbs of the salt, and 1 tsp of the cayenne pepper and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, partially covered, until the hen is tender, about 2 hours. Remove the hen and set aside. Strain and reserve the broth.

In a large, heavy pot or a Dutch oven over medium heat, combine the oil and flour. Cook, stirring constantly, until the roux is a dark, chocolate brown color, about 20 to 25 minutes. Add the chopped onions, bell peppers, celery and chopped sausage. Cook, stirring, until the vegetables are very soft, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add the reserved chicken broth and stir until the roux mixture and broth are well combined. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 1 1/2 hours.

 

Meanwhile, remove the skin from the hen and pick the meat off the bones, discarding the skin and bones. Coarsely chop or tear the meat into bite size pieces. Add the chicken and the sliced sausage to the gumbo. Cook for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and let sit for 5 minutes before skimming any fat that has risen to the surface.

 

Stir in the green onions and parsley and serve the gumbo in individual soup or gumbo bowls over hot, steamed white rice.


Hattie's Creole Jambalaya

 

Extra-virgin olive oil, enough to coat a skillet

4          x          boneless           chicken breasts, julienne-cut

20        x          jumbo shrimp, peeled and de-veined

All-purpose flour, for dusting

5          links     andouille sausage, sliced

5          cloves garlic, minced

2          x          green peppers, julienned

2          x          red peppers, julienned

4          stalks   celery, chopped

6          x          fresh okra pods, sliced

1          large    Spanish onion

1          Tbs      oregano

4          Tbs      parsley

2          Tbs      paprika

2          Tbs      chili powder

1          Tbs      cayenne

10        peeled plum tomatoes, chopped

4          Tbs      Worcestershire sauce

3          cups     long or medium grained rice

4          cups     seafood or chicken stock

2          cups     tomato juice

10        fresh    crawfish, shell-on, optional

1          bunch scallions, chopped

Parsley, for garnish

 

Coat a large, deep skillet with olive oil and keep on high heat until oil sizzles.

Dredge chicken and shrimp in flour and add to skillet with andouille sausage. Lower heat and remove the par-cooked shrimp. Add garlic, peppers, celery, okra, and onion and cook on low heat for about 4 minutes, stirring constantly. Add all seasoning and diced tomatoes and Worcestershire.

 

Add uncooked rice and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes on low heat. Add stock and tomato juice, then simmer for 5 minutes on medium heat, taking care to stir to prevent sticking. Once rice has completely cooked, add shrimp and crawfish; simmer for 2 minutes.

 

Serve in a deep bowl and garnish with fresh chopped scallions and parsley.

 


Jambalaya

 

2          Tbs      garlic, minced

1          Tbs      crushed red chile flakes

4          x          bay leaves

½         cup      canola oil

8          oz        tomato puree

1          can       32-oz tomatoes, diced in puree

1          can       32-oz tomatoes, diced

1          lb         andouille or other hot, smoked sausage

1          qt         chicken stock

4          cups     green peppers, diced

4          cups     yellow onions, diced

Cooked Rice

1          lb         chicken, boned and cubed

Salt and pepper, to taste

½         cup      scallions, diced

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.

Sauté the garlic, chiles, and bay leaves in the oil. Once the garlic is fragrant, add all the tomato products and simmer, stirring for about 45 minutes. Slice and roast the sausage for about 20 minutes. Drain the fat off.

 

Add to the tomatoes, chicken stock, sausage, green peppers, and onions and simmer another 1 to 1 1/2 hours, add salt and pepper. The jambalaya is finished when it has thickened and turned brick color, without any more oil coming to the surface. At this point, cook a big pot of rice to mix with the sauce (equal amounts of rice to the sauce) and add any meats you want to the jambalaya sauce (chicken pieces, shrimp, alligator, veal etc.) Poach the meat in the sauce to cook it. Add scallions at the last minute for color.

 

To make vegetarian jambalaya, smoke the tomatoes first, in a home smoker, or place them in the oven with a pie plate of smoking chips for a 1/2-hour. This gives the sauce the same flavor as adding sausage. Then use vegetable stock instead of chicken stock and add any vegetables of your choice at the end.

 


Jerusalem Artichoke Soup with Lemon And Saffron

 

2          med     onions, 1/2-inch dice

2          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

1          clove    garlic, minced

1 ½      lbs        Jerusalem artichokes, peeled and quartered

4          cups     chicken broth

Salt, pepper

10-12   x          blanched almonds

2          Tbs      water

Pinch saffron

½         x          lemon, juiced

2          Tbs      chopped fresh Italian parsley, with stems

 

Using a heavy casserole with a cover, sauté the onions in the olive oil over low heat, covered, about 20 minutes. Uncover, add garlic and the artichokes, and increase heat. Continue to sauté for a few more minutes. Add the chicken broth and salt and pepper, to taste. Bring to a boil and simmer, covered, for 30 minutes. Grind the almonds in a spice grinder and mix with the water. Whisk the mixture into the soup along with saffron strands and the lemon juice. Reheat, sprinkle parsley on top, and serve.

 

 


Legendary Jambalaya

 

2          Tbs      peanut oil

12        oz        smoked andouille or kielbasa sausage, sliced

2          x          boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed

1          med     onion, diced

2          stalks   celery, diced

2          cloves  garlic, minced

1          x          bell pepper, diced

1          28-oz   can peeled diced tomatoes

½         tsp       hot sauce

1          tsp       file powder

1          Tbs      Cajun spice blend

Cooked steamed rice, for serving

 

Heat a large, heavy, dry stockpot or Dutch oven over high heat. Add 1 Tbs peanut oil, and then brown the sausage. Remove the sausage from the pan, and reserve the drippings. Add another Tbs peanut oil, and then brown the chicken, adding more peanut oil, if necessary.

Return the sausage to the pan with the chicken, and add the onion, celery, garlic, and pepper. Sauté until the meats and the vegetables are cooked through. Add the tomatoes and the hot sauce, and stir with a wooden spoon to combine. Add the file powder and the Cajun spice, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for at least 1 hour. Serve over cooked, steamed rice.

 

This recipe was provided by professional chefs and has been scaled down from a bulk recipe provided by a restaurant. The FN chefs have not tested this recipe, in the proportions indicated, and therefore, we cannot make any representation as to the results.

 


Potato Leek Soup

 

From a book on Monet’s life, this is one of the recipes in it – only 4 ingredients, simple to fix, utterly delicious.  One of the family favorites.  You can add some stuff on top like grated cheese, chopped scallions or crisply fried bacon, but it is not necessary.  The simplicity of the dish and the flavors is what is beautiful about it.  If you add the cheese and bacon, it tastes great, but you lose the rustic attitude and turn it into a restaurant baked potato soup type of dish.

 

½         cup      unsalted butter

5-6       large    leeks, white parts only, cut into ½ inch slices

1          tsp       salt

4          large    potatoes, sliced

 

Heat ¼ cup of the butter in a pan and sauté the leeks.  While they are cooking, heat 1 quart water with the salt to just below a boil.  Add the leeks into the water.  Cover the pan, reduce the heat and simmer for 45 minutes.  Add the sliced potato, cover and continue cooking for 20 minutes.  Add the rest of the butter before serving.

 

 


 Roasted Corn Chowder

 

Warm, spicy, lots of flavors and textures, this is one of Flip’s favorites.

 

1-2       bags     frozen corn

1          x          canola oil

1          large                onion, chopped fine

1          x          olive oil

1          x          leeks, washed well and sliced thin

1          x          green   peppers, seeded and chopped fine

½         x          red       peppers, seeded and chopped fine

½         x          yellow peppers, seeded and chopped fine

½         x          jalapeno           peppers, chopped fine

1          tsp                   dried thyme

1          lrg        bay leaves

1          x          salt and pepper to taste

4          med                 potatoes, diced small

4          cans     unsalted chicken broth

 

Place oven rack on highest level.  Preheat broiler.

 

Place corn on baking sheet oiled with canola.  Broil about 7 to 10 minutes, turning periodically, until slightly charred.  In large stock pots, sauté onion in olive oil over medium heat until lightly browned.  Add leeks and sauté 5 minutes.  Add bell peppers, jalapeno peppers, thyme, bay leaves, and salt.  Cook for 10 minutes more.  (If cooking ahead of time, stop at this point until 1 hour before serving time).

 

Add chicken broth and bring to a boil.  Add potatoes and simmer 1 hour or until potatoes are tender.  Add corn and heat through.

 

 


Smoky Clam Chowder

 

1          lb         russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

½         cup      (1 stick) butter

3          stalks   celery, chopped

1          med     onion, chopped

½         cup      all purpose flour

6          8-oz     bottles clam juice

4          6 ½ oz cans chopped clams with juices

1          Tbs      chopped fresh parsley

½         tsp       chopped fresh thyme or 1/4 tsp dried

½         tsp       chopped fresh marjoram or 1/4 tsp dried

½         tsp       chopped fresh dill or 1/4 tsp dried dill weed

¼         tsp       powdered garlic

1/8       tsp       liquid smoke*

2          cups     whipping cream

1          cup      whole milk

 

Boil potatoes in large saucepan of salted water until just tender, about 6 minutes. Drain potatoes well.

 

Melt butter in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add celery and onion and sauté until onion is translucent, about 6 minutes. Add flour and stir 2 minutes. Gradually mix in clam juice. Simmer until beginning to thicken, stirring frequently, about 2 minutes. Add clams with juices, parsley, thyme, marjoram, dill, garlic, liquid smoke and potatoes. Simmer 5 minutes to blend flavors. Add cream and milk. Bring to simmer. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to simmer before serving.)

 

Serves 8.

 


Sweet Potato Bisque with Lemon and Ricotta Cream Seville Orange Gelee

 

This is the nicest, creamiest, tastiest soup I have fixed, and very simple.  It has the richness and smokiness of the sweet potatoes, the brightness of the Ricotta and the sweetness of the orange marmalade. 

 

½         cup      Orange Marmalade

½         cup      semi dry white wine

1          x          salt and pepper to taste

 

½         cup      Ricotta, preferably whole milk

1          x          lemon

2          Tbs      cream or milk

1          x          salt and pepper to taste

 

4          x          sweet potatoes

2          cups     stock, preferably dark chicken

1          cup      heavy whipping cream

4          Tbs      honey

2          tsp       ginger

½         Tbs      ground allspice

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

1          x          salt and pepper to taste

 

Seville Orange Gelee

In a heavy saucepan over low heat, melt the marmalade with wine and salt and pepper. Bring to a very soft boil.  Strain the gelee and reserve at room temperature.

 

Zest lemon.  Loosen the ricotta with juice of lemon and cream.  With an electric mixer or whisk, whip the ricotta until light and fluffy.  Fold in the lemon zest, salt and pepper to taste.

 

In a moderate oven (375 degrees), bake sweet potatoes for approximately 45 minutes or until a knife easily slides through.  Allow to cool to room temperature and remove the potato from the skins.  In a blender, in several stages, blend the potato with stock until you have a pourable puree.  Add this puree to a saucepan over low heat.  Add honey, ginger, allspice, cram and any remaining stock, stirring constantly.  Simmer for 30 minutes.

 

Add butter off the heat and mix completely, salt and pepper to taste, and serve.

 

Garnish the soup with a large spoon of the lemon ricotta cream and drizzle with the orange gelee.  Serve with a slightly chilled Gewürztraminer or Riesling.

 

Servings: 4


The Tombs Gumbo

 

1          cup      vegetable oil

1          cup      flour

8          stalks   celery, chopped

4          x          onions, chopped

2          x          green peppers, chopped

2          x          red peppers, chopped

4          cloves garlic, minced

2          cans     (15-oz) chicken broth

2          cans     (15-oz) beef broth

2          cans     (28-oz) chopped tomatoes

1          lb         okra, sliced (fresh or frozen)

2          Tbs      hot sauce

5          x          bay leaves

2          tsp       black pepper

2          tsp       white pepper

2          tsp       cayenne pepper

2          lbs        chicken thigh meat, diced and Sautéed until brown

1          lb         andouille sausage, diced

1          lb         (21 to 25 count) peeled and deveined shrimp

Serving suggestion: cooked rice

 

In a large skillet, combine oil and flour to make the roux. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until dark brown, about 30 minutes.

Add celery, onion, peppers, and garlic and cook for 10 more minutes. Transfer to a thick bottom pot and add chicken broth, beef broth, tomatoes, okra, hot sauce, bay leaves, black and white pepper, cayenne pepper, chicken thighs, and andouille sausage. Simmer for 15 minutes. Add the shrimp and cook for 5 more minutes. Serve over rice.

 

 

 

 

 


The Ultimate Chili

 

1          lbs        lean ground beef

1          lbs        ground pork

1          lbs        sirloin, cubed to about ½ inch cubes

2 ½      cups     chopped onion

½         tsp       oregano

½         tsp       black pepper

1          tsp       salt

1 ½      tsp       cumin

¼         cup      chili powder

½         tsp       cinnamon

1          tsp       chopped parsley

1          tsp       basil

¼         cup      chopped green bell pepper

¼         cup      chopped red bell pepper

½         tsp       cayenne pepper

1          Tbs      minced garlic

3          bottles dark bear (and 3 more for you while you fix this!)

3          15 oz   cans crushed tomatoes

1          Tbs      tomato paste

2          dash     Worchester sauce

1          Tbs      brown sugar

½         oz        unsweetened chocolate

1          x          bay leaf

½         tsp       white sugar

2          15 oz   cans kidney beans, rinsed & drained

1          15 oz   can pinto beans, rinsed & drained

1          x          Grated Cheddar cheese

1          x          Finely chopped green, white or sweet onions

 

In a large, deep pot – cook meat on medium-high until evenly browned.  Drain meat & set aside.

 

In a same large pot - cook all ingredients from the onion to the cayenne pepper until onions are soft, about 8 minutes.  Add garlic and cook for about 30 seconds.  Add the beer and heat until foam subsides, about 1 minute.  Add the meat back in, and add the rest of the ingredients except for the beans, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for about an hour, stirring occasionally so nothing sticks to the bottom.  Skim off as much grease as possible, then add the beans and cook until thickened, about 90 minutes.  Take lid of or leave it on as needed over the 90 minutes to get the consistency (liquid content) as you like it by the end.

 

Serve with the cheese, green onions (or more finely chopped white or sweet onions).


Sandwiches and Snacks

 

 

Black Russian Sandwich

 

If you like this type of sandwich, this is the best.

 

Butter, spreadable consistency

2          slices    dark bread, such as pumpernickel

2          slices    Swiss cheese

2          thin      slices deli roast beef

2          thin      slices deli ham

2          thin      slices deli turkey

2          Tbs      Russian Dressing (recipe follows)

 

To build each sandwich:

Top 1 slice of bread with 1 slice of cheese. Add roast beef, 1 T. dressing, ham, 1 T. dressing, turkey and remaining slice of cheese, in that order. Butter the remaining slice of bread and top the sandwich. Heat a skillet to medium low. Place sandwich, butter side down, in skillet. Butter the top slice of bread. Grill sandwich until cheese starts to melt, flip and grill other side. Serve with more dressing on the side if desired.

 

 

Russian Dressing

½         cup      mayonnaise

½         cup      sour cream

2          Tbs      ketchup

1          Tbs      finely minced onion

1          Tbs      finely minced celery

1          tsp       paprika

1          tsp       prepared horseradish

¼         tsp       hot pepper sauce

salt, to taste

 

Mix all ingredients together. Chill at least 1 hour to allow flavors to blend. Keeps in refrigerator, 1 week.


Cuban Sandwich

 

½         cup      mayonnaise

4          canned chipotle chiles in adobo

6          long     sandwich rolls, split in half - French loaf style bread

6          thin      slices Black Forest ham

12        thin      slices imported Swiss cheese

2          kosher  dill pickles, thinly sliced lengthwise

1 ½      lbs        Roast Pork, thinly sliced or shredded (about 3 cups),

plus reserved pan juices, recipe follows

Kosher salt

 

In a mini food processor, combine the mayonnaise and chipotles and process until smooth. Spread the cut sides of the rolls with the chipotle mayonnaise. Assemble the sandwiches with the ham, cheese, pickles and roast pork. Top the meat with a spoonful of the pork pan juices and season with salt. Close the sandwiches and tuck in any overhanging filling.

 

Using an electric sandwich grill press, grill the sandwiches in batches until crispy and hot.

 

Alternately, preheat the oven to 325 °F. Set a large skillet or griddle over moderately low heat. Arrange the sandwiches on the griddle and cover with a large baking sheet weighed down with a heavy skillet. Cook the sandwiches, turning once, until they're crisp on the outside, about 6 minutes.

 

Transfer the sandwiches to a baking sheet and bake until the cheese is melted, about 8 minutes. Cut the sandwiches in half and serve immediately; pass the remaining pan juices separately.

 

Roast Pork:

1          8-lb      pork shoulder, boned

1 ½      Tbs      minced garlic

1          cup      plus 2 Tbs distilled white vinegar

¾         cup      fresh lime juice

¼         cup      fresh grapefruit juice

¼         cup      fresh orange juice

2          Tbs      dried oregano, crumbled

1          Tbs      freshly ground black pepper

2          tsp       adobo-style seasoning

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1          large    green bell pepper, coarsely chopped

1          med     onion, coarsely chopped

 

Using a small, sharp knife, make 1-inch-long slashes in the skin of the pork shoulder, about 2 inches apart. Rub the garlic into the slashes and along the underside of the pork.

 

In a large glass or ceramic bowl, combine the vinegar, lime juice, grapefruit juice, orange juice, oregano, pepper, adobo seasoning, and salt and pepper. Stir in the green pepper and onion, then add the pork, skin side up. Refrigerate overnight turning the meat once or twice. Bring to room temperature before cooking.

 

Preheat the oven to 400 °F. Transfer the pork and its marinade to a roasting pan. Cover with foil and roast until very tender, about 3 hours. Let cool in the liquid. Transfer the pork to a cutting board and discard the skin and fat. Strain the pan juices into a glass measure and skim off the fat. Slice or shred the pork, as desired.

 

Note: The pork can be refrigerated for up to 3 days

 

 

 


Grilled Ham and Cheese Sandwich

 

Forget a diet type of ham and cheese.  This is robust and filling.  Be generous with the mustard, and almost as generous with the honey, but you too much and the honey will spill out into the pan while frying.  If you used to eat two ham and cheese sandwiches for a meal, just try one of these to start with.

 

For one sandwich:

 

2          slices    French bread, each about 1/2-inch thick

2          Tbs      unsalted butter, softened

2          tsp       Dijon mustard

2          tsp       honey

2-3       thin      slices good quality ham, such as Black Forest

2          slices    Gruyere, Swiss or Monterey jack

 

Spread mustard on one piece of bread, followed by the ham and then the cheese.  Spread the honey on the other piece of bread and turn it over on top of the rest of the sandwich to complete. 

 

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and melt 1 Tbs of the butter in the skillet. Transfer the sandwiches to the skillet and cook until golden brown on the bottom, about 2 minutes. Turn and add the remaining Tbs of butter to the skillet. Cook the sandwiches until the cheese has melted and the second side is golden brown, about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Remove the sandwiches from the pan and serve immediately.

 

 

 

 


Inside-Out Bacon Cheeseburgers with Grilled Green Onion Mayo

 

5          slices    bacon, chopped

4          x          scallions, cleaned and trimmed

Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling

1 1/3    lbs        ground beef sirloin

1          Tbs      Worcestershire sauce, eyeball it

1          Tbs      steak seasoning blend or coarse salt and black pepper

½         lb         extra sharp white cheddar cheese, crumbled

1          cup      mayonnaise or reduced fat mayonnaise

1          tsp       ground cumin

Salt and pepper

4          x          crusty Kaiser rolls, split

4          x          leaves crisp romaine lettuce

 

Preheat grill pan over high heat.

In a medium pan brown bacon over medium high heat and drain on paper towel lined plate.

 

Brush scallions with a little oil and grill on hot grill pan 2 or 3 minutes on each side. Remove from heat to cool.

 

Combine ground beef with Worcestershire and steak seasoning or salt and pepper. Divide meat into 4 equal parts. Combine cheese crumbles and cooked bacon. Take 1/4 of the meat in your hand and make a well in the center of it. Pile in cheese and bacon, then carefully form the burger around the cheese and bacon filling. Make sure the fillings are completely covered with meat. When all 4 patties are formed, drizzle burgers with oil and place on hot grill pan. Cook 2 minutes on each side over high heat, reduce heat to medium low and cook burgers 7 or 8 minutes longer, turning occasionally. Do not press down on burgers as they cook. Transfer burgers to a plate and let them rest 5 minutes before serving.

 

Chop cooled, grilled green onions and add to a food processor. Add mayonnaise and cumin to the food processor and pulse the onions and mayonnaise. Season with salt and pepper, to your taste.

 

Pile burgers on crusty buns and top with crisp lettuce leaves and a slather of green onion mayonnaise. As you bite into the burgers, you will find a smoky, cheesy surprise at the center.

 

 

           


Monte Cristo Sandwich

 

3          slices    white bread

Mayonnaise, as needed

2          slices    Gouda

2          slices    turkey

3          large    eggs, beaten

¼         cup      milk

2          Tbs      vegetable oil

1          Tbs      unsalted butter

Strawberry slices, for garnish

Orange wedges, for garnish

Serving suggestion: Blackberry jam

 

 

On a work surface, lay out 2 slices of bread and spread with mayonnaise. Top each slice with the 1 slice of Gouda and 1 slice of turkey each. Put the third slice of bread on top of one stack, and flip the remaining stack on top, cheese-side down, to make a triple-decker sandwich.

Using a knife, cut the crusts off the sandwich (this helps to pinch and seal the ends). Wrap the sandwich tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 6 hours. (Wrapping the sandwich in plastic wrap, compacts it, and prevents the egg batter from seeping in.)

 

Combine the eggs and milk in a bowl. Heat the oil and butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Unwrap the sandwich and dip it in the egg batter, to coat evenly. Gently place it in the skillet, and fry, turning once, until golden brown and hot, about 5 minutes total.

 

Cut the Monte Cristo in 1/2, transfer it to a place, and garnish with the strawberry and orange. Spoon some jam over each 1/2 and serve immediately.

 

 

 

 


New York-Style Philly Cheese Steak

 

I had a really hard time finding the right recipe for this.  I found a number of recipes that are far more complex, but did not yield any better sandwiches.  Some people are Cheez Whiz snobs, I prefer the Provolone.  Get the butcher to slice the meat extra thin.  This really makes a big difference, and you cannot do it yourself with a knife.  IF you want to add red or yellow bell peppers with the onions, it works well, but is not necessary.

 

Onions:

1          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan

2          large    yellow skinned onions, sliced very thin

Coarse salt and pepper or steak seasoning blend

 

Meat:

2          tsp       extra-virgin olive oil, 2 drizzles

1 ½      lbs        lean beef tenderloin or sirloin, ask butcher to slice the meat very thin

1          tsp       garlic salt

Freshly ground black pepper

8          slices    provolone cheese, from the deli counter

4          x          soft Italian sandwich hoagie rolls, split 6 to 8 inches long each, split lengthwise

 

 

Heat a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Add 1 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan. Add onions and season with salt and pepper or steak seasoning blend. Cook onions, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes or until onions are soft and caramel in color.

 

Heat a heavy griddle pan over medium high to high heat. Wipe griddle with a drizzle of oil using a paper towel. Sear and cook thin sliced steaks until brown but not crisp, about 2 minutes on each side. Cook steaks in single layers in 2 batches and tenderize by cutting into meat with the side of your spatula while they cook. When the steaks are browned, just before you remove them from heat, sprinkle them with garlic salt and pepper. When all of the steaks are cooked, line each of your split rolls with 2 slices of provolone cheese. Pile 1/4 of your meat and onions on to the griddle and mix together with your spatula. Pile the meat and onions into rolls on top of the cheese. The heat from the meat and onions will melt the cheese. Repeat for remaining servings and serve.

 

 


Texas BBQ Pulled Pork and Coca Cola BBQ Sauce

 

Coca Cola?!?!  Yes, and you could substitute Dr. Pepper as well.

 

5-7       lb         pork butt

3          whole  green bell peppers

2          Tbs      fresh chopped garlic

3          Tbs      brown sugar

4          cups     ginger ale

1          cup      lemon juice

½         cup      soy sauce

1          Tbs      kosher salt

1          pinch   chopped garlic

 

2          lbs        yellow onions

½         cup      jalapeno peppers

2 ½      cups     ketchup

½         cup      Worcestershire sauce

1          tsp       Spanish paprika

2          tsp       unsalted butter

4          x          bay leaves

½         cup      Dijon mustard

2          Tbs      fresh chopped garlic

1          Tbs      cayenne pepper

¼         cup      cider vinegar

2          cups     coca cola soda

 

In a mixing bowl, add garlic, brown sugar, bell peppers and rosemary.  Rub the meat with this mixture.  Next, pour the ginger ale and lemon juice over the meat and top with salt.  Put in the refrigerator for half an hour.  Roast the meat at 350 °For at least 2 ½ hours, covered with aluminum foil.  Allow the meat to rest for 10 minutes.  While warm, pull the meat and shred. 

 

In a large pre-heated pot, add butter, jalapeno peppers, onions and bay leaves, and cook until onions become translucent.  Add liquid ingredients.  Bring to a boil for 5 minutes, then reduce the heat to medium and allow to simmer for 2 hours.  The sauce will reduce by nearly half.

 

When ready to serve, top with BBQ sauce.

 

 


Main Dishes

 

                                                                                   

 

Barbecued Beef Brisket (Lee Agee's)

 

5 or 6   lb         beef brisket; trimmed

1 ½      Tbs      liquid smoke           

1          tsp       celery salt           

1          tsp       onion salt            

 

Mix and place brisket in same, turning once to cover both sides, then cover with heavy duty foil.  Refrigerate overnight.  Bake covered for 5 hours at 300 °F .  30 minutes before completed (that is, after 4 ½ hours), uncover, drain off excess oil and cover with 1 ½ cups good BBQ sauce.  

 


Beef Tenderloin Steaks On Potato Galettes With Mustard Sauce

 

4          Tbs      unsalted butter

½         cup      + 1 Tbs chopped shallots

½         cup      dry white wine

2          cups     chicken stock or canned low-salt chicken broth

1          cup      beef stock or canned beef broth

 

1          12-oz   russet potato, peeled, grated, drained well

½         cup      fresh white breadcrumbs made from French bread

2          Tbs      chopped fresh parsley

 

3          Tbs      olive oil

 

2          6-oz     beef tenderloin steaks (about 1 inch thick)

1          Tbs      coarse-grained mustard

 

Melt 2 Tbs butter in heavy medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add 1/2 cup shallots and sauté 4 minutes. Add wine and boil 1 minute. Add both stocks and boil until reduced to 2/3 cup, about 28 minutes. (Sauce can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cool slightly. Cover and refrigerate.)

 

Preheat oven to 200 °F. Mix potato, breadcrumbs, 1 Tbs parsley and remaining 1 Tbs shallots in medium bowl. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

 

Heat 2 Tbs oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Mound potato mixture in skillet in 2 portions, dividing evenly. Using metal spatula, press each into 5-inch oval. Cook until bottom is brown and crisp, about 10 minutes. Turn and cook until second side browns, about 5 minutes. Transfer galettes to baking sheet. Keep warm in oven.

 

Heat 1 Tbs oil in heavy medium skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle steaks with salt and pepper. Add to skillet; cook to desired doneness, about 4 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer steaks to plate (do not clean skillet). Add sauce to skillet and bring to boil, scraping up browned bits. Mix in mustard. Remove from heat. Add remaining 2 Tbs butter and whisk just until melted.

 

Place potato galettes on plates. Top each with 1 steak. Spoon sauce over. Sprinkle with remaining 1 Tbs parsley and serve.

 


 

 

Beef Tenderloin Steaks with Gorgonzola

 

4          x          (1 1/2-inch-thick) beef tenderloin steaks

1          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil, eyeball it

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

¾         lb         Gorgonzola

4          x          fresh sage leaves, thinly sliced

 

 

Let meat rest 10 minutes before beginning dinner preparation.

Place a large, flat griddle or skillet over high heat. When hot, using a pair of tongs and a folded paper towel, wipe cooking surface with oil and place steaks on hot pan. Caramelize the steaks, 2 minutes on each side. Reduce heat to moderate. Season meat with salt and pepper and cook 4 to 5 minutes longer on each side.

 

Preheat broiler to high.

 

Arrange steaks on baking sheet. Top each steak with 3 oz Gorgonzola. Place baking sheet 6 inches from broiler heat just long enough to melt the cheese. Remove meat from the oven and top with slivers of fresh sage. Let meat rest 2 or 3 minutes, then serve immediately.

 


Beef Tenderloin Steaks With Port-Rosemary Sauce

 

Sauce

1          Tbs      butter

½         cup      minced shallots (about 4 oz)

1          cup      dry red wine

¾         cup      ruby Port

1          cup      canned beef broth

1          sprig    fresh rosemary or 1/2 tsp dried

 

Steaks

1          Tbs      olive oil

4          x          beef tenderloin steaks, 1-inch-thick (about 6 to 8 oz each)

 

 

3          Tbs      chilled and unsalted butter

1          tsp       chopped fresh rosemary or 1/4 tsp dried

 

FOR SAUCE: Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add shallots and sauté until tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in wine and Port. Boil 5 minutes. Add broth and rosemary sprig and boil until liquid is reduced to 1/3 cup, about 12 minutes. Strain sauce and set aside. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

 

 

FOR STEAKS: Heat oil in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Season steaks with salt and pepper. Add steaks to skillet and cook to desired doneness, about 4 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer steaks to platter. Tent with foil to keep warm.

 

Add sauce to skillet and bring to boil, scraping up any browned bits. Remove from heat. Gradually add butter, whisking just until melted. Stir in chopped rosemary. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

 

Spoon sauce over steaks and serve.

 


Beef Tenderloin Steaks With Smoky Bacon-Bourbon Sauce

 

1 ½      cups     dry red wine

3          each     garlic cloves, chopped

1 ¾      cups     canned beef broth

1 ¼      cups     canned low-salt chicken broth

1 ½      Tbs      tomato paste

1          each     bay leaf

1          each     fresh thyme sprig

 

8          oz        bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces

1          Tbs      all purpose flour

 

1          Tbs      butter

4          x          beef tenderloin steaks, 1-inch-thick

 

1          Tbs      bourbon

 

Boil wine and garlic in heavy medium saucepan until reduced to 1/2 cup, about 15 minutes. Add next 5 ingredients; boil until reduced by half, about 20 minutes. Set sauce aside. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill.)

 

Cook bacon in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat until crisp, about 8 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels. Pour off all but 1 Tbs drippings from skillet. Add flour to drippings in skillet; whisk to blend. Cook 1 minute, whisking constantly. Gradually whisk in sauce; bring to boil. Reduce heat; simmer until sauce thickens, about 2 minutes.

 

Meanwhile, melt butter in another heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle steaks with salt and pepper. Add to skillet and cook to desired doneness, about 4 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer steaks to plates.

 

Mix bacon and bourbon into sauce. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon over steaks.


Beef Tenderloin with a Dark Ale and Mushroom Sauce

 

2          heads   endive

1          Tbs      butter, plus 2 Tbs

Salt and pepper

1          Tbs      sugar

1          cup      dark ale beer, plus 2 cups

2          Tbs      vegetable oil

2-3       lb         strip beef tenderloin

½         cup      dark Belgium ale

1          each     red onion, sliced

1          cup      dry wild mushrooms, soaked in 1 cup dark ale beer

2          cups     brown veal stock

½         cup      heavy cream

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.

 

Cut the endives in half, remove the core, place in a small pot. Add 1 Tbs butter, salt, pepper, sugar, and 1 cup ale beer. Bring to a boil, cover with a piece of parchment paper and place in a 350 °F degree oven. Cook for 30 to 40 minutes, until slightly brown in color and the beer has reduced by 1/2.

 

Meanwhile, heat the oil in an ovenproof frying pan or casserole. Season the meat with salt and pepper on all sides. When the oil is very hot, sear the meat, caramelizing all sides evenly. When seared, drain off the fat and add the Belgian beer.

 

Increase the oven temperature to 450 °F.

 

Roast the meat in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and let the meat rest for 5 minutes before slicing.

 

Melt 2 Tbs butter in a heavy-bottomed pot, add the onions, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes. Squeeze the mushrooms out of the juice, and add to the onions, cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Deglaze the pan with 2 cups beer, and reduce until almost dry. Then add the mushroom rehydrating liquid, and reduce until almost dry. Add the veal stock and the cream, and reduce at low heat until thick. Check the seasoning, reserve.

 

To serve, slice the meat in 1/2 to 1/4-inch thick pieces. Place on a plate, surround with the endive leaves. Put the wild mushrooms around the meat and cover with a thin layer of the sauce and serve immediately.

 


Beef Tenderloin With Roasted Shallots, Bacon And Port

 

1 ½      lbs        large shallots (about 24), halved lengthwise, peeled

3          Tbs      olive oil

 

6          cups     canned beef broth

1 ½      cups     tawny Port

1          Tbs      tomato paste

 

2          x          beef tenderloins (large ends), trimmed, 3 pounds each

2          tsp       dried thyme

7          slices    bacon, chopped

6          Tbs      butter

1 ½      Tbs      all purpose flour

 

1 large bunch watercress

 

Pour a full-bodied red wine, such as a Bordeaux, Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon.

 

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 375 °F. In 9-inch-diameter pie pan, toss shallots with oil to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Roast until shallots are deep brown and very tender, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes.

 

Boil broth and Port in large saucepan until reduced to 3 3/4 cups, about 30 minutes. Whisk in tomato paste. (Shallots and broth mixture can be made 1 day ahead. Cover separately; chill.)

 

Pat beef dry; sprinkle with thyme, salt and pepper. In large roasting pan set over medium heat, sauté bacon until golden, about 4 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towels. Add beef to pan; brown on all sides over medium-high heat, about 7 minutes. Transfer pan to oven; roast beef until meat thermometer inserted into center registers 125 °F for medium-rare, about 45 minutes. Transfer beef to platter. Tent loosely with foil.

 

Spoon fat off top of pan drippings in roasting pan. Place roasting pan over high heat. Add broth mixture and bring to boil, scraping up any browned bits. Transfer to medium saucepan; bring to simmer. Mix 3 Tbs butter and flour in small bowl to form smooth paste; whisk into broth mixture and simmer until sauce thickens, about 2 minutes. Whisk in 3 Tbs butter. Stir in roasted shallots and reserved bacon. Season sauce with salt and pepper. Cut beef into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Spoon some sauce over. Garnish with watercress. Pass remaining sauce.

 


Beef Tournedos with Blue Cheese Mashed Potatoes

 

Mashed Potatoes

2       lbs     Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled, halved and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

Salt

¾         cups     heavy cream

6          Tbs      (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, softened

ground black pepper

¼         cup      crumbled blue cheese

 

Tournedos

3          Tbs      olive oil

8          4-oz     filet mignons, at least 1 inch thick

salt and ground black pepper

4          oz        white mushrooms, sliced 1/8 inch thick

¾         cup      beef broth (low sodium)

¾         cup      chicken broth (low sodium)

½         cup      dry red wine

1          Tbs      honey

2          Tbs      balsamic vinegar

 

It’s important to use steaks that are thick enough not to overcook, but small enough in diameter so that they don’t crowd the pan. Steaks cut from the center portion of the tenderloin, also known as the Chateaubriand, are perfect for this recipe.

 

1. For the potatoes: Bring the potatoes, 1 tsp salt, and enough water to cover the potatoes by 1 inch to a boil in a large saucepan over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until a paring knife can be slipped into and out of the center of the potatoes with very little resistance, 10 to 13 minutes. Drain thoroughly.

 

2. For the tournedos: Meanwhile, heat 2 Tbs of the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet over high heat until smoking. Season the beef with salt and pepper to taste. Place the beef in the skillet and cook without disturbing until well browned on the first side, about 3 minutes. Using tongs, flip the steaks and cook for 2 minutes longer for rare, 3 minutes for medium-rare, and 4 minutes for medium. Transfer the beef to a platter and cover with foil to keep warm.

 

3. Reduce the heat to medium-high and heat the remaining 1 Tbs olive oil until shimmering. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring frequently, until tender and golden, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl and set aside.

 

4. Add the broths, wine, and honey to the pan and bring to a boil, scraping up the browned bits on the pan bottom using a wooden spoon. Boil until the liquid is reduced to 1 cup, 5 to 6 minutes. Stir in the vinegar and any accumulated juices from the steaks and cook for 1 minutes to allow the flavors to blend. Add the mushrooms to the sauce and remove from the heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a liquid measuring cup; cover with plastic wrap to keep warm.

 

5. To finish the potatoes: Place a food mill or ricer over the now empty but still warm saucepan. Process or rice the potatoes into the saucepan. Stir in the cream and butter until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Rewarm if necessary.

 

6. Stir the blue cheese into the mashed potatoes, then divide the potatoes evenly among the centers of 4 warmed dinner plates. Place 2 tournedos, overlapping slightly, on top of the potatoes on each plate. Drizzle the pan sauce over the steaks and around the edge of the potatoes. Serve immediately.

 

 

Serves 4

 

 

 


Blue Cheese Stuffed Filets with Bacon Mashed Potatoes

 

6          oz        bacon, chopped

4          8-oz     filet mignons

1          cup      crumbled Stilton cheese or any type of blue-veined cheese

Creole seasoning

3          Tbs      olive oil

Creole seasoning

1          small    onion, cut into 1/8-inch rings

½         cup      Crystal Hot Sauce

½         cup      flour

1          cup      vegetable oil

1          cup      demi-glace

½         cup      port wine

1          recipe   Creamed Potatoes, recipe follows

½         cup      port wine

1          Tbs      chopped fresh parsley leaves

 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a hot sauté pan, render the bacon until crispy, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. On the side of each filet make a 2-inch slit forming a pocket. Stuff each pocket with 2 Tbs of the cheese. Season the filets with Creole seasoning. In oven-proof sauté pan, add the olive oil. When the oil is hot, sear the filets for 2 minutes on each side. Place the pan in the oven and roast the filets for 6 to7 minutes for medium-rare. Toss the onions with the hot sauce. Season with salt. Dredge the onions in the flour, tapping off any excess. Heat the vegetable oil. Fry the onions until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels. Season with Creole seasoning. Remove the filets from the pan and set aside. Place the sauté pan on the stove. Over medium-high heat, deglaze the pan with the demi-glace and port wine. Remove from the heat and keep warm. Fold the bacon and bacon fat into the creamed potatoes. To assemble, divide the potatoes by 4 and mound the

potatoes in the center of each plate. Lay each filet on top of the potatoes. Spoon the pan sauce over each filet. Garnish each plate with the remaining cheese, fried onions and parsley.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Boeuf Bourguignon a La Julia Child

 

"This is the classic, adapted from "Mastering the Art of French Cooking." A wonderful dish, raising the simple stew to an art form and quite simple to make -- even though the instructions look long.  Use a wine that you would drink -- not cooking wine. And the better the cut of beef, the better the stew. As the beef is combined with braised onions and sauteed mushrooms, all that is needed to complete your main course is a bowl of potatoes or noodles and lots of good bread for the sauce.

 

For the Stew

6          oz        bacon, solid chunk

1          Tbs      olive oil

3          lbs        lean stewing beef, cut into 2-inch cubes

1          x          carrots, peeled and sliced

1          x          onions, peeled and sliced

1          tsp       salt

¼         tsp       pepper, freshly ground

2          Tbs      flour

3          cups     red wine ( a full bodied wine like Bordeaux or Burgundy or Chianti)

2 -3      cups     beef stock ( Simple Beef stock is posted on the site, unsalted and defatted)

1          Tbs      tomato paste

2          cloves  garlic, mashed ( you may choose to add more)

1          sprig    thyme ( or 1/2 teaspoon dred thyme)

1          x          bay leaves, preferably fresh

 

For the braised onions

18 -24  x          white pearl onions, peeled

1 ½      Tbs      unsalted butter

1 ½      Tbs      olive oil

½         cup      beef stock

1          x          salt & fresh ground pepper

1          bay      leaves

1          sprig    thyme

2          sprigs   parsley

 

For the Sauteed Mushrooms

1          lb         mushrooms, quartered

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

1          Tbs      olive oil

 

 

First prepare the bacon: cut off the rind and reserve.  Cut the bacon into lardons about 1/4" thick and 1 1/2" long.  Simmer the rind and the lardons for ten minutes in 1 1/2 quarts of water.  Drain and dry the lardons and rind and reserve.

 

Pre-heat the oven to 450°F.

 

Put the tablespoon of olive oil in a large (9" - 10" wide, 3" deep) fireproof casserole and warm over moderate heat.  Saute the lardons for 2 to 3 minutes to brown lightly.  Remove to a side dish with a slotted spoon.  Dry off the pieces of beef and saute them, a few at a time in the hot oil/bacon fat until nicely browned on all sides.  Once browned, remove to the side plate with the bacon.

 

In the same oil/fat, saute the onion and the carrot until softened.  Pour off the fat and return the lardons and the beef to the casserole with the carrots and onion.  Toss the contents of the casserole with the salt and pepper and sprinkle with the flour.  Set the uncovered casserole in the oven for four minutes.  Toss the contents of the casserole again and return to the hot oven for 4 more minutes.  Now, lower the heat to 325°F and remove the casserole from the oven.

 

Add the wine and enough stock so that the meat is barely covered.  Add the tomato paste, garlic and herbs and the bacon rind.  Bring to a simmer on the top of the stove.  Cover and place in the oven, adjusting the heat so that the liquid simmers very slowly for three to four hours.  The meat is done when a fork pierces it easily.

 

While the meat is cooking, prepare the onions and mushrooms and set them aside till needed.  For the onion, if using frozen, make sure they are defrosted and drained.  Heat the butter and oil in a large skillet and add the onions to the skillet.  Saute over medium heat for about ten minutes, rolling the onions about so they brown as evenly as possible, without breaking apart.  Pour in the stock, season to taste, add the herbs, and cover.  Simmer over low heat for about 40 to 50 minutes until the onions are perfectly tender but retain their shape and the liquid has mostly evaporated.  Remove the herbs and set the onions aside.

 

For the mushrooms, heat the butter and oil over high heat in a large skillet.  As soon as the foam begins to subside add the mushrooms and toss and shake the pan for about five minutes.  As soon as they have browned lightly, remove from heat.

 

To Finish the Stew:

When the meat is tender, remover the casserole from the oven and empty its contents into a sieve set over a saucepan.  Wash out the casserole and return the beef and bacon to it (discarding the bits of carrot and onion and herbs which remain in the sieve).  Distribute the mushrooms and onions over the meat.

 

Skim the fat off the sauce and simmer it for a minute or two, skimming off any additional fat which rises to the surface.  You should be left with about 2 1/2 cups of sauce thick enough to coat a spoon lightly.  If the sauce is too thick, add a few tablespoons of stock.  If the sauce is too thin, boil it down to reduce to the right consistency.  Taste for seasoning.  Pour the sauce over the meat and vegetables. 

 

If you are serving immediately, place the covered casserole over medium low heat and simmer 2 to 3 minutes.  Serve in the casserole or on a warm platter surrounded by noodles, potatoes or rice and garnished with fresh parsley.  If serving later or the next day, allow the casserole to cool and place cold, covered casserole in the refrigerator.

20 minutes prior to serving, place over medium low heat and simmer very slowly for ten minutes, occasionally basting the meat and vegetables with the sauce.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Bourbon Beef Tenderloin

 

1          cup      bourbon

1          cup      brown sugar

2/3       cup      soy sauce

1          bunch  cilantro, leaves chopped

½         cup      lemon juice

1          Tbs      Worcestershire sauce

2          cups     water

3-4       sprigs   fresh thyme, leaves chopped

1          5-lb      beef tenderloin, silver connective tissue removed

Oil, to brush grill

 

Preheat grill or oven to 350 °F.

Prepare marinade by combining the bourbon, brown sugar, soy sauce, cilantro, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, water, and thyme in a bowl. Make sure the tenderloin has been cleaned and the tissues has been removed. Fold the tail end of the beef back underneath itself so that it is of uniform thickness and secure with butcher's string. Place meat in a dish and pour marinade over meat, cover, and refrigerate for approximately 8 to 12 hours turning meat over several times.

 

When grill is ready, place meat on oiled surface and reserve the liquid from the marinade. Cook over high heat with lid closed, turning meat often and occasionally basting with the marinade. The tenderloin will cook to rare in approximately 30 to 45 minutes.

 

Serve with horseradish cream on the side.

 

 

 

 

 


Bulgogi

 

“Very good for side kick” as an old Tae Kwon Do instructor used to tell us.  This is the closest I could find to the taste of the old masters Korean recipe.

 

2          lbs        lean beef tenderloin

½         cup      light soy sauce

¼         cup      dark soy sauce

½         cup      water

3          Tbs      finely chopped green onion

3          tsp       crushed garlic

2          tsp       finely minced ginger

½         tsp       black pepper

1          Tbs      sugar

2          Tbs      white sesame seeds, toasted and ground

1          Tbs      sesame oil

 

MARINADE: Cut meat across the grain into very thin slices and then narrow strips. Combine soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, pepper or chili, sesame seeds and green onions. Marinate beef at least 3 hours, refrigerated. Remove beef from the marinade. Cook to desired doneness.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Cashew Bake Casserole

 

12        oz        egg noodles

1 ½      lb         ground beef

3          Tbs      butter

½         cup      chopped onion

1          cup      diced celery

1          can       cream of chicken soup

1          can       cream of mushroom soup

1          cup      milk

½         tsp       pepper

½         cup      cashew nuts, salted

 

Start cooking the egg noodles (they take about 20 minutes), boiling in salted water.

 

Brown the ground beef, remove from pan and set aside.

 

Melt butter and brown (or heat until onions are translucent) onion and celery (in same pan), then add the ground beef to the pan and mix.

 

When noodles are done, spread in bottom of lightly greased casserole pan, then cover with hamburger mixture.

 

Combine soups and milk, and heat until warm, but not boiling.  Pour over casserole.

 

Bake at 325 for 1 hour, covered.  Remove, uncover and sprinkle with cashews.  Baked uncovered for another 10 minutes.

 

 

 

 


Chuck Wagon Cheeseburger Skillet

 

4          slices    bacon

1          lb         Lean ground beef

3          Tbs      chopped onion

3          Tbs      oil

2 ½      cups     frozen hash-brown potatoes, thawed

1          11-oz.  can Mexicorn - whole kernel corn, red and green peppers, drained

1          4.5-oz  can chopped green chiles, drained

½         cup      barbecue sauce

2          cups     shredded Cheddar cheese (8 oz)

¼         tsp       salt, if desired

¼         tsp       pepper, if desired

1          16-oz   can Pillsbury Grand’s Buttermilk Biscuits

 

1. Heat oven to 400?F. Cook bacon until crisp. Drain on paper towel; crumble. Set aside. 2. In 12-inch cast iron or ovenproof skillet, brown ground beef and onion over medium heat until beef is thoroughly cooked, stirring frequently. Drain. Place beef mixture in medium bowl; cover to keep warm. 3. Add oil to same skillet. Heat over medium-high heat until hot. Add potatoes; cook 3 to 5 minutes or until browned, stirring constantly. Add cooked ground beef, corn, chiles, barbecue sauce, cheese, salt and pepper; mix well. Cook until thoroughly heated, stirring occasionally. Sprinkle with bacon. 4. Separate dough into 8 biscuits. Arrange biscuits over hot mixture. 5. Bake at 400?F. for 16 to 24 minutes or until biscuits are deep golden brown and bottoms are no longer doughy.

 

 

 

 


Down-home Barbecue Beef Short Ribs

 

8          lbs        beef short ribs, cut across the bone
2          cloves  garlic
1          x          bay leaf
1          cup      brown mustard
½         cup      red wine vinegar
1/3       cup      brown sugar
2          Tbs      tomato paste
1          tsp       cayenne pepper
3          Tbs      butter, melted
1          Tbs      molasses
3          Tbs      Worcestershire sauce
1          Tbs      granulated onion
1          Tbs      granulated garlic
Salt and pepper, to taste

 

Fill a large stockpot with water and bring to a boil. Add the ribs, garlic cloves and bay leaf. Parboil the ribs, covered, for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until fork tender.

In a medium saucepan, combine all ingredients. Pour 1 cup of the rib water into the mixture. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for approximately 15 minutes until the sauce has thickened and is heated through. Add the ribs to the pot, turning with tongs to coat well. Season with salt and pepper.

Transfer the ribs to a hot outdoor grill, meat side down first, and cook 8 to 10 minutes on each side, taking care not to burn them. Serve with remaining sauce on the side.

 

 

 

 

 


Drunk'n Steak

 

2-3       lbs        Chuck, or any cut of beef or meat

1          cup      Captain Morgan's Spiced Rum

1          cups     Coke

X         x          vegetables, your choice

1          Tbs      butter

½         tsp       garlic salt

½         tsp       onion powder

1          tsp       chicken seasoning

½         tsp       pepper, freshly ground

ice cubes

 

Choose your favorite cut of meat. In my family we use chuck because it is very inexpensive and badly NEEDS tenderizing.

Take a small-tipped paring knife and puncture the meat on both sides several dozen times. Doing this helps get flavor into the meat, not just on the surface.

 

Place the meat in a glass pan. (I've never seen it, but I have heard that acidic liquids can do damage to your metal cook wear.)

 

In another bowl, mix one part rum (We use Captain Morgan's Spiced Rum, though the Coconut one is really good too.) to two parts Coke (don't use Pepsi because it is too sweet).

 

Pour the mixture over your meat (make sure that the meat is covered by the liquid). Cover and let sit for at least two hours in the refrigerator. Make sure to turn the meat at least once.

 

We usually have some grilled vegetables with this as well. Choose your favorite summer vegetables and place on a sheet of buttered aluminum foil, leave half of the foil sheet empty so it can be used to created a packet. On top of the vegetables place one Tbs of margarine or butter, and one cube of ice. Sprinkle garlic salt, onion powder, and rotisserie chicken seasoning over the vegetables. Fold uncovered part of foil over the vegetables to form a packet and seal.

 

Get your grill nice and hot and place get vegetable packets on. Pull the meat from the refrigerator. Take meat out of the marinade and place on a plate. Rub a small amount of freshly ground pepper and salt into the meat.

 

Put meat on the grill...mix yourself a rum and coke and use a little of it to keep the flames off of the meat.

 

Cooking time depends on your grill. The steaks can also be done in the kitchen but are so much more fun out in the yard.

 


Fancier Hobo Hamburgers

 

1 ½      lbs        ground beef

1          cup      cracker crumbs

1          x          egg, beaten

¼         cup      lemon juice

1          cup      grated cheese

½         cup      chopped green pepper

1 ½      tsp       salt

¼         tsp       black pepper

¼         tsp       garlic powder

4          med     red potatoes, sliced thin

1          large    onion, sliced thin

4          x          carrots, peeled and cut into strips

4          slices    bacon

 

In a large bowl combine ground beef, cracker crumbs, egg, lemon juice, cheese, green pepper, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Mix well. Shape into 4 patties.

Place each patty onto 2 layers of heavy-duty aluminum foil (enough to cover and close). On each patty, place potato slices, onion slice, and carrots. Slice bacon in 1/2 and place both slices on top. Seal aluminum foil tightly and cook on campfire or in a preheated 350 °F oven for approximately 45 minutes.

 

 


Filet Mignon with Mushrooms and Sauce Pinot Noir

 

2          8-oz     filet mignon steaks

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2          strips    bacon

2          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

1          lb         assorted mushrooms, such as shiitake, crimini, and chanterelle, stemmed and halved

1          Tbs      finely chopped garlic

2          sprigs   fresh rosemary

2          cups     Pinot Noir

2          Tbs      prepared demi-glace

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

 

Preheat oven to 375 °F.

Season both sides of the filet mignon generously with salt and pepper. Wrap a piece of bacon around the sides of each steak and secure with butcher's twine. In a large heavy, ovenproof skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat until almost smoking. Place the steaks in the hot pan and cook until well seared on 1 side, about 3 minutes. Turn the steaks over, there should be a nice crust on top. Add the mushrooms, garlic, and rosemary; give everything a good stir. Transfer the pan to the oven. Roast for 10 to 12 minutes or until the steaks are cooked medium-rare.

 

Remove the steaks, mushrooms, and rosemary to a platter; cover to keep warm. Return the pan to the stove over medium-high heat. Deglaze with the wine, scraping up all the yummy bits in the bottom of the pan. Mix in the demi-glace, stirring to combine. Put the steaks and mushrooms back in the pan and coat in the pan sauce. Finish with a couple of Tbs of butter to make it rich. Put the steak and mushrooms on 2 serving plates and cut off the butcher's twine from the filets. Pour the wine sauce on top and garnish each plate with a roasted rosemary sprig.

 

 


Fire Roasted Beef Tenderloin with Madeira Mustard Sauce and Wasabi Mashed Potatoes

 

½         cup      peanut oil

1          Tbs      black peppercorn

1          Tbs      ground star anise, plus whole pieces, for garnish

1          tsp       coriander seeds

¼         tsp       Szechwan peppercorns

½         tsp       red curry paste

1          Tbs      tamarind paste

1          Tbs      honey

½         cup      Madeira

¾         cup      veal stock

1          lb         beef tenderloin

1          Tbs      rice wine vinegar

½         Tbs      Chinese powdered mustard

2          Tbs      butter

Wasabi Mashed Potatoes, recipe follows

 

Preheat oven to 400 °F.

Preheat a grill.

 

In a saucepan, heat oil, black peppercorns, star anise, coriander seeds, and Szechwan peppercorns for 1 minute until aromatic. Stir in red curry paste, tamarind paste, and honey. Deglaze with Madeira and reduce until syrupy. Add the veal stock and continue to reduce in half. Transfer to a blender and process to a puree. Strain and set aside.

 

Over hot grill, cook the tenderloin until grill marks appear on all sides. Transfer to a sauté pan and pour in half of the strained sauce. Roast in the oven for 4 to 5 minutes or until desired doneness.

 

Transfer the remaining sauce to a saucepan and cook over medium heat. Reduce until thickened. In a cup, dissolve the powdered mustard in rice wine vinegar. Whisk in mustard and finish sauce with the butter.

 

To serve, cut the steak into thin slices. Nap with Madeira Mustard Sauce and serve with Wasabi Mashed Potatoes garnished with a whole star anise.

 

Wasabi Mashed Potatoes:

 

1          lb         baking potatoes, like russets, peeled

Salted water

4          Tbs      butter, cut into pieces

¼         cup      heavy cream, heated

1          Tbs      roasted garlic puree

½         lb         spinach, stems removed

1 ½      tsp       wasabi

Salt and pepper

 

Cut the potatoes into large pieces of equal size. Cover with salted water. Bring to a boil and cook until tender. Drain thoroughly. Pass through a food mill and whip in the butter, hot cream and roasted garlic puree.

Blanch the spinach in boiling salted water for 10 seconds. Refresh in ice water. Drain thoroughly. Transfer to a blender and add wasabi powder. Process to a puree. Stir into warm mashed potatoes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Grilled Peppered Beef Tenderloin with a Morel, Cabernet, and Toasted Garlic Sauce, served with Whipped Yukon Golds

 

Morel Mushroom Sauce:

2          oz        pure olive oil

16        oz        morel mushrooms

4          garlic   cloves, minced

6          oz        Cabernet Sauvignon

6          oz        brown veal stock

2          Tbs      fresh thyme

4          Tbs      butter

Salt and pepper

 

Potatoes:

2          lbs        Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled

4          cups     heavy cream

16        oz        unsalted butter

Salt and pepper

 

Tenderloin:

4          10-oz   beef tenderloin fillets

1          Tbs      kosher salt

3          Tbs      cracked black pepper

Extra-virgin olive oil

 

 

For the mushroom sauce: In a skillet with oil, sauté mushrooms until tender. Add garlic and allow to brown lightly. Deglaze the skillet with cabernet sauvignon and reduce by three-fourths. Add veal stock and reduce by half. Add thyme and finish with butter. Season with salt and pepper. Keep warm until ready to serve.

For the potatoes: Place potatoes in a stockpot with lukewarm water to cover and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and skim the foam off the top. Cook until tender. In a saucepot, heat cream and butter while potatoes are cooking. Drain water from potatoes and put through a sieve, add butter and cream and season with salt and pepper. Whip vigorously.

 

Preheat the grill to medium high. Roll the fillet in salt and pepper. Massage meat with olive oil. Grill to desired degree of doneness, about 130 °F for medium when taken on an instant read thermometer.

 

 

 

 


Grilled Pepper Crusted T-Bone Steaks with Worcestershire-Chive Butter

 

Worcestershire-Chive Butter:

1          Tbs      olive oil

¼         cup      finely chopped shallots

1          tsp       finely chopped garlic

2          stick     unsalted butter, at room temperature

¼         cup      Worcestershire sauce

2          Tbs      dry mustard

3          Tbs      finely chopped chives

Salt and freshly ground pepper

 

Steaks:

2          cups     coarsely ground black peppercorns

3          Tbs      ancho chile powder

8          x          T-bone steaks, each 10 to 12 oz

Olive oil

Salt

 

 

Preheat grill or side burner. Heat oil in a medium skillet add shallots and garlic and cook until soft, let cool slightly. Place butter in a small bowl and add shallot mixture, Worcestershire, mustard and chives and mix until combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Scrape mixture into the center of a piece of waxed paper and roll into a log. Refrigerate until firm.

Preheat grill. Mix the peppercorns and ancho chile powder in a medium baking dish. Brush steaks with olive oil and season with salt. Dredge one side of the steaks in the pepper mixture and grill, pepper side down, until golden brown, about 5 to 6 minutes, turn over and continue grilling 6 to 7 minutes for medium-rare doneness. Remove from the grill and top with a slice of the butter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Herb- And Spice-Roasted Beef Tenderloin With Red Wine-Shallot Sauce

 

Sauce

2          Tbs      olive oil

2 ½      cups     sliced shallots (about 12 oz)

2          Tbs      minced garlic

1          tsp       sugar

1          Tbs      all purpose flour

1          Tbs      minced fresh thyme

2          tsp       minced fresh rosemary

1          each     bay leaf

1          tsp       grated orange peel

1          pinch   ground nutmeg

1          pinch   ground cloves

3 ¼      cups     canned beef broth

1 ½      cups     dry red wine

¼         cup      brandy

 

Tenderloin

2          Tbs      fresh rosemary leaves

2          Tbs      fresh thyme leaves

4          large    garlic cloves, peeled

2          each     bay leaves

1          large    shallot, peeled, quartered

1          Tbs      grated orange peel

1          Tbs      coarse salt

1          tsp       ground black pepper

½         tsp       ground nutmeg

¼         tsp       ground cloves

2          Tbs      olive oil

2          x          2-pound (large end) beef tenderloin pieces, trimmed

 

¼         cup      unsalted butter, room temperature

 

For sauce:

Heat oil in large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add shallots and garlic; sauté until tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in sugar; sauté until shallots are golden, about 15 minutes longer. Add flour, herbs, orange peel, nutmeg and cloves; stir 1 minute. Pour in broth, wine and brandy. Boil until sauce is reduced to 1 3/4 cups, about 20 minutes. Discard bay leaf. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Chill.)

 

For tenderloin:

Grind first 10 ingredients in processor. With machine running, add oil and blend well. Spread mixture evenly over all sides of tenderloins. Place beef in large glass baking dish. Cover with foil; chill at least 6 hours. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Keep chilled.)

 

Preheat oven to 400 °F. Place beef on rack in large roasting pan. Roast until meat thermometer inserted into center of beef registers 125 °F for rare, about 35 minutes. Remove from oven and cover with foil; let stand 10 minutes.

 

Transfer beef to cutting board. Pour any accumulated juices from roasts into sauce. Bring sauce to boil. Remove from heat; whisk in butter. Season with salt and pepper. Slice beef. Serve with sauce.

 

 

 


Hobos, or Foil Dinners

 

1 ½      lbs        ground beef

4          med     potatoes, sliced thin

1          large    onion, chopped

4          x          carrots, peeled and cut into strips

water

 

Shape beef into 4 patties.  Place each patty onto center of a sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil about two feet long (needs to be long enough to cover and close).  On each patty, place potato slices, onion slice, and carrots.  Sprinkle a bit of water (or I use a bit of Worcestershire sauce), perhaps a Tbs. Seal aluminum foil tightly and cook in a preheated 350 °F oven for approximately 45 minutes.

 

 


Marinated and Grilled London Broil with Steak Sauce

 

1          x          2 1/2 pound tri-tip London Broil or flank steak

¼         cup      red wine vinegar

¼         cup      dry red wine

2          Tbs      olive oil

2          Tbs      Worcestershire sauce

2          Tbs      soy sauce

2          Tbs      Creole mustard, or other spicy whole-grain mustard

1          Tbs      Essence, recipe in the Sauces and Rubs section

1          tsp       coarsely ground black pepper

4          cloves  garlic, smashed

Steak Sauce, use favorite

 

Place the flank steak in a large, plastic resealable bag.

In a large, glass measuring cup, combine red wine vinegar, red wine, olive oil, Worcestershire, soy sauce, mustard, essence, salt, pepper, and garlic. Pour the marinade into the bag with the steak, seal and place inside a large, glass baking dish to prevent possible spills. Marinate in the refrigerator for 24 hours (or at least 6 hours).

 

Preheat a gas or charcoal grill to high heat. (Alternately, preheat the broiler). Remove the steak from the marinade and pat dry with paper towels. Place the steak on the grill (or under the broiler) and cook to desired doneness, about 6 minutes per side for rare. Transfer the steak to a cutting board and let stand for 5 minutes before carving.

 

Slice across the grain into thin diagonal slices. Serve steak with sauce.

 

 


New York Strip Steak with Cognac Butter and Portobello Mushroom Ragout

 

Strip Steaks:

½         cup      butter

1          clove    garlic, peeled and halved

4          12 oz   NY strip steaks or tenderloin or sirloin steaks

½         cup      cracked black peppercorns

2          Tbs      coarse salt

¼         cup      Worcestershire sauce

½         cup      cognac or brandy

 

Mushroom Ragout:

1 ½      lbs        fresh Portobello mushrooms

¼         cup      olive oil

½         cup      chopped shallots

½         cup      finely diced tomatoes

2/3       cup      heavy cream

½         cup      beef or vegetable stock

½         cup      chopped fresh basil

½         cup      chopped Italian parsley

Salt and white pepper

 

To prepare the steaks: Rub steaks with garlic clove, salt and cracked pepper. Marinate in Worcestershire sauce for 1 hour, minimum.

To prepare the ragout: Grill mushrooms whole, then coarsely chop into 3/4-inch cubes. Pour olive oil in pan, add mushrooms and shallots, and sauté until soft. Add tomatoes, heavy cream, and stock. Simmer and reduce for about 10 minutes. Add herbs and seasonings and remove from heat. Keep warm if using immediately.

 

To cook steaks and prepare cognac butter: Sear steaks in a heavy skillet on high heat to desired temperature, remove from heat. Add cognac and flame off, then whisk in the butter.

 

Place mushroom ragout on plate. Cut steaks across the grain into 1/2-inch slices. Fan steaks on top of ragout and drizzle with cognac butter. Garnish as desired. Serve immediately.

 

 


Pan Seared Rib-Eye Steaks with Cowboy Coffee Pan Blend

 

Cowboy Coffee Pan Blend:

1/2       cup      freshly ground coffee

1/2       cup      coarsely ground black pepper

1/4       cup      kosher salt

1/4       cup      brown sugar

4          16 oz   rib-eye steaks

2          Tbs      vegetable oil

 

 

To prepare the coffee blend, combine all the ingredients in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Shake well.

 

To prepare the steaks, preheat the oven to 450 °F. Season each steak with the coffee blend, evenly coating all sides and edges. Heat the oil in a large heavy skillet over high heat until just to the smoking point. Add as many steaks to the pan as will fit without overcrowding and sear well, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer the steaks to a baking sheet and repeat with the remaining steaks. Place the steaks in the oven and cook for 5 to 10 minutes for medium rare. Let stand for at least 5 minutes before serving. Or finish on the grill.

 

 


Pan Seared Steaks with Herb Sauce

 

I love the ultra-rich flavor and glossy consistency that a classic French demi-glace (a savory, full-bodied reduction traditionally made from veal bones and stock) adds to this sauce.

 

2          x          boneless strip steaks (1 1/2 to 1 3/4 inches thick (about 1 pound each))

Kosher salt and pepper

1          Tbs      vegetable oil

1          small    shallot, minced

½         cup      white wine

¼         cup      Sauce Base (1/2 recipe; see related content)

¼         tsp       white wine vinegar

1 ½      tsp       minced fresh chives

1 ½      tsp       minced fresh parsley

1          tsp       minced fresh tarragon

1          Tbs      unsalted butter

 

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 275 degrees. Cut each steak in half vertically to create four 8-ounce steaks. Pat steaks dry with paper towel. Season entire surface of steaks liberally with salt and pepper; gently press sides of steaks until uniform 1 1/2 inches thick. Place steaks on wire rack set in rimmed baking sheet; transfer baking sheet to oven. Cook until instant-read thermometer inserted in center of steak registers 90 to 95 degrees for rare to medium-rare, 20 to 25 minutes, or 100 to 105 degrees for medium, 25 to 30 minutes.

 

Heat oil in 12-inch heavy-bottomed skillet over high heat until smoking. Place steaks in skillet and sear steaks until well-browned and crusty, about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, lifting once halfway through to redistribute fat underneath each steak. (Reduce heat if fond begins to burn.) Using tongs, turn steaks and cook until well browned on second side, 2 to 2 1/2 minutes. Transfer all steaks to wire cooling rack and reduce heat under pan to medium. Use tongs to stand 2 steaks on their sides. Holding steaks together, return to skillet and sear on all sides until browned, about 1 1/2 minutes. Repeat with remaining 2 steaks. Transfer steaks to platter and tent loosely with aluminum foil while preparing herb sauce.

 

Return now-empty skillet to medium-low heat; add shallot and cook, stirring constantly, until lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add wine and bring to simmer, scraping up any browned bits. Add Sauce Base, vinegar, and any accumulated juices from steak; return to simmer and cook until slightly reduced, about 1 minute. Off heat, whisk in chives, parsley, tarragon, and butter; season with salt and pepper to taste. Spoon sauce over steaks and serve.

 


Pancetta-Studded Beef Tenderloin

 

For beef

1          3-lb      trimmed and tied beef tenderloin at room temperature

2          oz        thinly sliced pancetta, cut into 1/3-inch pieces

2          tsp       kosher salt

2          tsp       black pepper

2          Tbs      vegetable oil

 

For sauce

¼         cup      finely chopped shallot

½         cup      dry red wine

¼         cup      dry Marsala wine

¾         cup      beef or veal demiglace*

2          Tbs      red currant jelly

1 ½      Tbs      unsalted butter, cut into bits

¼         tsp       salt

1/8       tsp       black pepper

 

Roast beef:

Preheat oven to 425 °F.

 

Pat beef dry and cut 1/2-inch-deep slits at 1-inch intervals all over roast, then insert 1 piece of pancetta into each slit. Sprinkle beef with kosher salt and pepper. Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over high heat until just smoking, then brown beef on all sides, about 5 minutes. Transfer beef to a small roasting pan, reserving skillet.

 

Roast beef in middle of oven until an instant-read thermometer inserted diagonally 2 inches into center registers 120 °F, about 25 minutes. Transfer beef to a cutting board and let stand, loosely covered with foil, 25 minutes. (Beef will continue to cook as it stands, reaching 130 °F for medium-rare.)

 

Make sauce while beef stands:

Heat reserved skillet over moderately high heat until oil is hot but not smoking, then sauté é shallot until golden, about 2 minutes. Add red wine and Marsala and deglaze skillet by boiling, stirring and scraping up brown bits, until liquid is reduced by about one third. Add demiglace and jelly and briskly simmer, whisking, until jelly is incorporated, about 2 minutes. Add butter, 1 bit at a time, whisking until incorporated, then remove from heat. Whisk in salt and pepper. Pour sauce through a fine sieve into a bowl, pressing on solids.


Pepper-crusted Filet Mignon With Port-Cherry Reduction

 

For the steaks:
¼         cup      plus 2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
¼         cup      black peppercorns, cracked
1          Tbs      kosher salt
4          x          center-cut filet mignons, about 1 1/2 to 2 inches thick

For the Port-Cherry Reduction: 1 1/2 cups ruby port
½         cup      balsamic vinegar
½         cup      dried tart cherries
1          large    shallot, finely minced
2          sprigs   fresh thyme
1          Tbs      unsalted butter
Salt to taste

 

To prepare the steaks: In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, heat 1/4 cup olive oil and cracked peppercorns. When small bubbles start to appear, reduce the heat to the lowest level. Cook for 7 to 10 minutes and remove from heat; cool to room temperature. After it cools, add the kosher salt and mix to combine.

Coat the tops and bottoms of the steaks with pepper mixture. Press the mix into the steaks by covering them with plastic wrap and pressing down. Let the steaks rest at room temperature for 1 hour before cooking.

For the Port-Cherry Reduction: While steaks rest, combine the port, vinegar, cherries, shallot and thyme in a small saucepan and simmer over medium-low heat until reduced to about 1/2 cup liquid (watch closely; the cherries can make it difficult to judge the quantity of remaining liquid). Cover and remove from the flame; whisk in the butter and season with salt, if needed.

When steaks are ready, move the rack to the middle of the oven and preheat to 450 degrees. Heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil in a heavy skillet over high heat until the oil just starts to smoke. Place the steaks in the pan to cook. Don't move them until a crust has formed. After 3 minutes, turn them over for another 3 minutes. Place skillet in the oven for 3 to 5 minutes for rare, 5 to 7 minutes for medium-rare to medium.

Transfer the steaks to a serving platter and cover loosely with foil to rest for 5 minutes before serving. While the steaks are resting, remove the thyme springs from the reserved Port-Cherry Reduction and reheat the sauce. Serve steak with sauce.


Red and Black Pepper Crusted Filet Mignon with Honey-Mustard, Horseradish, Mint Sauce

 

4          6-oz     filet mignon

Kosher salt

2          tsp       ancho chile powder

2          tsp       coarsely ground black pepper

1          Tbs      olive oil

1          tsp       olive oil

 

Season filet with salt on both sides. Sprinkle 1 side of each filet with 1/2 tsp of the ancho chile powder and 1/2 tsp of the coarsely ground black pepper. Heat the olive oil in a large Sauté pan over high heat until almost smoking. Place the filet, pepper-side down in the pan and Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes or until a crust forms. Turn the filet over, reduce heat to medium and continue cooking until desired doneness, 2 to 3 minutes for medium-rare. Let rest 2 to 3 minutes before serving, spoon 1 Tbs of the sauce over each steak.

 

Mustard Sauce:

2          Tbs      Dijon mustard

2          Tbs      honey

1          Tbs      freshly grated horseradish or prepared (drained)

1          Tbs      finely chopped fresh mint

Salt

 

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and season with salt to taste.

 


Roasted Beef Tenderloin with Merlot Shallot Sauce

 

The tenderloin is the least-used muscle of the cow--and is meltingly tender (though expensive). The center cut used here, also called chateaubriand, is the most tender part of the tenderloin.

 

Tenderloin:

Cooking spray

1/3       cup      finely chopped fresh sage

1          Tbs      cracked black pepper

3          Tbs      minced garlic

2          tsp       kosher salt

1          x          2 ½ pound center-cut beef tenderloin

 

Sauce:

1/3       cup      finely chopped shallots

1 ½      cups     Merlot or other dry red wine

1 ½      cups     low-salt beef broth

1          tsp       butter

3          Tbs      chopped fresh parsley

¼         tsp       kosher salt

 

Preheat oven to 350°.

 

To prepare tenderloin, heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Combine sage, pepper, garlic, and salt; rub over tenderloin. Add tenderloin to pan; cook 6 minutes, lightly browning on all sides.

 

Insert a meat thermometer into thickest portion of tenderloin. Cover handle of pan with foil. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until thermometer registers 140° (medium-rare) or desired degree of doneness. Place tenderloin on a cutting board; cover loosely with foil. Let stand 15 minutes. (Temperature of tenderloin will increase 5 degrees upon standing.)

 

To prepare sauce, heat pan coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add shallots; sauté 3 minutes or until tender. Stir in wine. Bring to a boil; cook until reduced to 3/4 cup (about 4 minutes). Stir in broth; cook until reduced to 1 1/4 cups (about 6 minutes). Add butter, stirring until melted. Stir in parsley and 1/4 tsp salt. Serve with tenderloin.

 

Makes 10 servings (serving size: 3 oz tenderloin and 2 Tbs sauce)

 

 

 

 


Roasted Fillet of Beef rolled in Herbs and Porcini and Wrapped in Prosciutto

 

This is very fast and simple, yet decadently rich, and definitely worth it.

 

12-18   slices    parma prosciutto ham

3          cloves  garlic, peeled

1 ½      cups     dried porcini, soaked in 1 cup boiling water

3          large    pats of butter

1          each     juice of lemon

1          each     sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

2          lb         fillet of beef

1          handfl  fresh rosemary and thyme, leaves picked from stems and chopped

2          glasses red wine (and one more for the chef)

 

Preheat oven and roasting pan to 450 F.  Make sure there are no gaps in between the laid-out slices of prosciutto on wax paper.  Chop one of them garlic cloves and fry with the soaked porcini (pressing the juice out before frying) in one pat of butter for a minute.  Then add half of the soaking water (make sure no grit from the porcini gets in).  Simmer slowly and reduce for around 5 minutes before stirring in a squeeze of lemon, the remaining butter and seasoning.  Rub the mushrooms over half of the laid-out prosciutto.  Season the beef and roll it in the herbs.  Place in on the mushroomy end of the prosciutto and slowly roll up the meat.  Once the beef is rolled up, putt off the wax paper and push in the ends of the prosciutto to neaten.  Lightly secure with 4 pieces of string. 

 

Place the fillet in the hot roasting pan with a couple of cloves of garlic and cook for 25-30 minutes (rare), 40 minutes (medium) or 50 minutes (well done).  Halfway through, add the wine to the pan.  When the meat is done, remove it to a chopping board and leave it to rest for 5 minutes.  Pour any juices back into the roasting pan.  Simmer the juices on top of the stove, scraping all the goodness from the sides of the pan.  Remove from the heat and serve as a light red wine gravy.  Slice the fillet as thick or as thin as you like and serve.

 

Serves 4.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Rum-Black Pepper Glazed Filet Mignon

 

2          Tbs      butter

2          x          shallots, finely sliced

2          cloves garlic, finely chopped

1          cup      Myers's dark rum

4          cups     chicken stock

1          tsp       coarsely ground black pepper

2          Tbs      molasses

Salt

 

Melt butter in a medium saucepan, add shallots and garlic and Sauté until soft. Add rum, bring to a boil and reduce to 1/3 cup. Add stock, bring to a boil and reduce the heat. Whisk in remaining ingredients and simmer until reduced to 2 cups. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve at room temperature.

 

4 filet mignon steaks, about 8 oz each

Olive oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper

 

Preheat grill. Brush each steak with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Grill for 3 minutes on each side for medium-rare doneness. Drizzle with Rum Sauce

 


Shepherd's Pie

 

Out of the may recipes I tried for this one, this combines the simplicity of the original rustic dish that the shepherds must have experienced with the flavors needed to make it a dish for the modern palette.

 

1          lb         freshly ground beef, 80 to 20 percent beef to fat

1          x          onion, chopped

½         lb         mushrooms, sliced

½         tsp       garlic powder

1          can       cream of mushroom soup (12 oz)

1          can       red peppers diced and drained (small)

½         cup      fresh frozen green beans

4          cups     mashed potatoes

Salt and pepper

 

Sauté ground beef with diced onions and sliced mushrooms. Do not drain meat, onions or mushrooms. Add the garlic powder to the undiluted cream of mushroom soup and stir well. Add soup mixture to the meat, mushrooms, and onions in pan, and add the chopped red peppers, stirring until thoroughly mixed--juices will hold it together.

Preheat oven to 375 °Fahrenheit.

 

Into individual crocks or bowls, spread the frozen green beans on bottom of each crock (green peas may be substituted). Fill crocks with meat mixture. Top each crock with 1 cup of mashed potatoes, in a big dollop or piped through a pastry bag to make them more elegant. Bake until potatoes are crisp and slightly browned, about 20 to 25 minutes.

 

Note: The shepherd's pies may be stored, unbaked and covered, for up to 3 days, in the refrigerator.

 

 

 

 


Steak au Poivre

 

1          4-lb      beef tenderloin

Kosher salt and coarsely ground black pepper

2          Tbs      vegetable oil

1          handfl  fresh thyme sprigs

1          handfl  fresh rosemary sprigs

2          x          shallots, finely chopped

½         cup      Cognac or brandy

½         cup      demi-glace or dark stock

¼         cup      heavy cream

1          Tbs      Dijon mustard

2          Tbs      jarred green peppercorns, drained

¼         cup      chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1          bunch  watercress, stems trimmed

 

 

Preheat the oven to 400 °F.

Pat the tenderloin dry with paper towels and sprinkle all sides with a generous amount of salt and pepper – you should see the seasoning on the meat. Place a large skillet or roasting pan over medium-high flame, drizzle with the oil, and just when it begins to smoke lay the tenderloin in the hot pan. Brown on all sides until a crust forms and the meat is well-seared, about 7 minutes total. Toss the fresh thyme and rosemary on top of the tenderloin and transfer the whole thing to the oven; roast for 20 to 25 minutes for medium-rare.

 

Remove the tenderloin to a cutting board to rest for 10 minutes before carving. Pour off the excess fat from the pan and put it back on the stove over medium-high heat. Add the shallots to the pan drippings, sauté, stirring with a spoon to scrape up the flavors in the bottom. Take the pan off the heat and pour in the cognac (premeasure - never pour directly from the bottle!) Put the pan back on the heat and tilt it slightly over the burner to ignite the alcohol, or light with a kitchen lighter. The cognac will flame for a few seconds then go out as the alcohol burns off. Stir in the demi-glace and cream, simmer for about 1 minute to thicken the sauce so it coats a spoon. Finish the sauce by stirring in the mustard and peppercorns until incorporated. Taste and season with salt, if necessary.

 

To serve: pile the watercress on a serving platter, cut the tenderloin into 1/2-inch thick slices and arrange it on top of the greens. Drizzle the sauce over the beef and garnish with chopped parsley. Serve the steak au poivre with pommes frites.

 

 


Steak with Shallots and Lyonnaise Potatoes

 

3          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

3          large    Yukon Gold potatoes (1 1/4 lbs), peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick

1          large    Vidalia onion, halved lengthwise and very thinly sliced crosswise

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

2          Tbs      red wine vinegar

4          7-oz     sirloin steaks (1 inch thick)

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

4          large    shallots, very thinly sliced

1/2       cup      dry red wine

2          Tbs      finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

 

1. In a very large nonstick skillet, heat 2 Tbs of the olive oil until shimmering. Add the potatoes in a slightly overlapping layer and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until golden and nearly cooked through, about 8 minutes. Add the onion, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 5 minutes longer. Add 1/2 Tbs of the vinegar and gently toss to combine. Cover loosely and keep warm.

 

2. Meanwhile, in another large skillet, heat the remaining 1 Tbs of olive oil until shimmering. Season the steaks with salt and pepper and cook them over moderately high heat, turning occasionally, until browned and crusty, 8 to 10 minutes for medium rare. Transfer the steaks to a serving platter and keep warm.

 

3. Add 1 Tbs of the butter and the shallots to the skillet and cook over moderate heat until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the remaining 1 1/2 Tbs of vinegar and cook until evaporated, about 30 seconds. Add the wine and cook until reduced by two-thirds, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and swirl in the remaining 1 Tbs of butter. Add the parsley and any accumulated meat juices, season the sauce with salt and pepper and spoon over the meat. Serve the steaks at once with the potatoes.

 

 

 


The Ultimate Beef Stew

 

2-3       lbs        beef shoulder, cut into 2-inch pieces

8          fresh    thyme sprigs, plus 4 sprigs

2          x          carrots, cut into 1/4-inch slices

6          cloves  garlic, smashed

2          cups     blanched and peeled red pearl onions

1          x          orange, peel cut in large strips

Cloves, a few

1          tsp       whole black peppercorns

2          bay      leaves

1          bottle   good quality dry red wine (recommended: Burgundy)

¼         cup      extra-virgin olive oil, for frying, plus more to drizzle

3          Tbs      butter

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Bouquet Garni

2 ½      cups     beef stock

½         lb         baby carrots

½         lb         garden peas

1          lb         white mushrooms, cut in half

1          pinch   sugar

Fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped, as garnish

Chives, finely chopped, as garnish

Garlic puree, recipe follows

Croutons, recipe follows

Serving suggestion: buttery mashed potatoes with chives and warm croutons with garlic puree

 

 

To make the marinade, place the beef in a large glass or plastic container. Add 8 sprigs of thyme, carrots, garlic, red onions, orange peel, cloves, peppercorns, bay leaves, and the wine. Mix well to coat, then cover and refrigerate for 4 hours.

Remove beef from the marinade and blot dry on paper towels. Heat the oil and butter and the remaining 4 sprigs thyme in a heavy-bottomed saucepan on a high heat. When the oil begins to smoke, remove the thyme. Add the beef and brown evenly on all sides. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Strain the marinade into the beef and stir with a wooden spoon, scraping up the flavorful bits in the bottom of the pot. Add bouquet garni and beef stock. Bring to a simmer and cook, uncovered, until the liquid starts to thicken, about 15 to 20 minutes. Cover and cook on low heat for 2 hours.

 

After about 2 hours add the baby carrots, garden peas, and mushrooms, along with a pinch of sugar to balance out the acid from the red wine. Turn the heat up slightly and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes more, until the vegetables and meat are tender. Season with salt and pepper.

Garnish with chopped parsley and chives. Squeeze some of the roasted garlic onto the croutons, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and serve with the stew.

 

Garlic puree:

2          heads   garlic, cut in half horizontally

2          Tbs      olive oil

1          sprig    thyme

Salt and pepper

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.

Put garlic on a sheet of aluminum foil. Drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Add a sprig of thyme and fold the foil around the garlic. Cook for 30 to 40 minutes or until garlic is tender and golden brown.

 

Croutons:

Olive oil, for frying

6          slices    bread

 

Heat about 1/4-inch of the olive oil in a frying pan. When the oil is hot, add the bread in batches and fry until golden on both sides, about 1 minute per side. Remove from pan and dry on paper towels.


Tournedos of Beef in Mushroom, Mustard and Red Wine Sauce with Caramelized Onion-Potato Gratin

 

Croutons:

4          slices    country-style bread

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

 

Preheat oven to 400 °F. Place bread on a work surface and using a 3-inch cookie cutter, cut a round crouton from the center of each piece of bread. Brush both sides of the croutons with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Place the croutons on a baking sheet and bake for 5 to 7 minutes or until lightly golden brown.

 

Tournedos and Sauce:

2          Tbs      olive oil

1          Tbs      unsalted butter

4          x          beef fillet steaks, about 6 oz

Salt and coarsely ground black pepper

1          lb         shiitake mushrooms, cleaned and quartered

2          x          shallots, finely diced

1          cup      red wine

1          cup      beef broth

2          Tbs      Dijon mustard

2          Tbs      cold unsalted butter

 

Heat olive oil and butter in a large skillet over high heat. Season the fillets with salt and press the coarsely cracked black pepper onto 1 side of each fillet. Place the fillets pepper-side down into the skillet and sear until golden brown, turn the fillets over and continue cooking for 4 to 5 minutes for medium-rare doneness. Remove the steaks to a plate. Remove all but 3 Tbs of the fat in the pan and return to high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook until golden brown and their liquid has evaporated. Add the shallots and cook until soft. Add the red wine and reduce by half. Add the broth and cook until reduced by half. Whisk in the mustard and butter and cook for 30 seconds. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Place each fillet on top of a crouton and spoon some of the sauce over.

 

Onion and Potato Gratin:

2          Tbs      olive oil

3          large    Spanish onion, peeled and sliced thinly

2          cloves  garlic, finely chopped

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

4          large    potatoes, peeled and sliced thinly

3          Tbs      balsamic vinegar

1 ¼      cups     heavy cream

¼         cup      finely chopped fresh parsley

1          cup      grated Gruyere cheese

 

Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook slowly until caramelized. Add the garlic and balsamic vinegar and cook for 2 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 °F. Butter a 9-inch baking pan a place a layer of potatoes on the bottom and season with salt and pepper. Spoon 1/5 of the onion mixture over the potatoes and top with 1/4 cup of the heavy cream and a Tbs of parsley. Repeat to make 5 layers. Sprinkle the cheese over the top of the potatoes. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until the potatoes are soft and the cream has been absorbed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


West Town Tavern Pot Roast with Black Vinegar Sauce

 

8          x          square-cut boneless beef short rib pieces, 9 oz each

1          x          Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

¼         cups     canola oil

2          x          carrots, scrubbed and roughly chopped

2          ribs      celery, roughly chopped

1          large    red onion, cut into eighths

2          large    bay leaves

10        sprigs   flat leaf parsley

1 ½      cups     zinfandel

 

Black Vinegar Sauce (in the Sauces section)

 

Preheat oven to 325.  Sprinkle short rib pieces with salt and pepper to taste.  In a heave 5-quart sauté pan heat the canola oil and sear the beef on all sides until brown.  Leave the beef in the pan.

 

Add carrots, celery, onion, bay leaves and parsley to the pan.  Pour in the wine and just enough water to come ¾ of the way up the sides of the beef.  Bring to a boil.  Remove pan from the heat, cover with a lid or foil and braise in the oven until meat is very tender, 3 to 3 ½ hours.  Let meat stand in the braising liquid until ready to serve.  Short ribs may be prepared up to this point, and refrigerated, covered, in the liquid for 2 days.

 

Make the sauce while ribs are braising.  Let sauce cool to room temperature and serve with pot roast.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Main Dishes - Pork

 

                                                   

 

 

 

Crunchy Pork Chops

 

2 pork chops, approximately 8 ounces each

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon dried oregano

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 cup bread crumbs

1 tablespoon freshly grated Parmesan

1 cup ground nut oil or similar, for frying

 

Pound the pork tenderloin until it is flat. Dredge in flour and pan fry in corn oil, browning Trim the thick white fat off the pork chops, cutting carefully around the outside edge. Lay the chops between 2 pieces of plastic wrap and, using a mallet or a rolling pin beat them until the meaty part of the chop is half as thick. You will need to beat around the bone, so turn them over once as you go.

 

Beat the egg in a shallow wide bowl with the mustard, oregano, and salt and pepper. On a large plate or platter, combine the breadcrumbs with the Parmesan.

 

Press each of the chops into the egg mixture, coating either side. Then dip the eggy chops into the bread crumbs, covering them evenly. Let them lie on a cooling rack to dry slightly while you heat the oil in a largefrying pan. When a small cube of bread sizzles if dropped into the oil, then the oil is hot enough. Cook the chops until they are a deep golden color, about 5 to 7 minutes a side (depending on how thin you've managed to get them and how cold they were before going in the oil).

 

 


Homemade Schnitzel

 

6          oz        pork tenderloin

1          cup      flour

1          cup      corn oil

3          oz        chopped onion

3          oz        sliced mushrooms

1          oz        red wine

½         oz        sour cream

3          oz        brown gravy

1          tsp       Worcestershire sauce

 

Pound the pork tenderloin until it is flat. Dredge in flour and pan fry in corn oil, browning both sides. Remove the schnitzel from the pan. Add chopped onion and mushrooms to the pan, and then sauté. To finish, add red wine, Worcestershire sauce, sour cream, and brown gravy. Place on serving dish and top with sauce from pan.  Shelley prefers these without the sauce (as probably would others), so you might simply have the sauce on the side for the purists at the table.

 


Honey-Bourbon Grilled Pork Tenderloin

 

3          ¾ lb     lean pork tenderloins

½         cup      diced onion

½         cup      lemon juice

½         cup      bourbon whiskey

¼         cup      honey

¼         cup      low-sodium soy sauce

1          Tbs      minced peeled gingerroot

2          Tbs      olive oil

4          cloves  garlic, minced

½         tsp       salt

¼         tsp       pepper

Vegetable cooking spray

3          Tbs      all-purpose flour

1 ¼      cups     water

 

Trim fat from pork. Combine onion and the next 7 ingredients (onion through garlic) in a large zip-top heavy-duty plastic bag. Add pork, seal bag, and marinate in refrigerator for 30 minutes. Remove pork from bag, reserving marinade. Sprinkle salt and pepper over pork.

 

Prepare grill. Place the pork on grill rack coated with cooking spray. Cover and cook for 30 minutes or until meat thermometer registers 160 degrees, turning and basting pork occasionally with 1/2cup marinade. Cut the pork into 1/4-inch-thick slices; set aside, and keep warm.

 

Place flour in a small saucepan. Gradually add remaining marinade and water, stirring with a wire whisk until blended. Bring to a boil over medium heat, and cook 3 minutes or until thickened, stirring constantly. Spoon gravy over pork; serve with mashed potatoes, if desired. 

 

9 servings (serving size: 3 oz pork and 1/4 cup gravy)

 

 

 

 

 


Pork Medallions With Port Sauce

 

2          lb         pork tenderloin, trimmed     

1          single   salt and pepper to taste     

1          single  flour, as needed         

2          Tbs     unsalted butter or margarine    

2          Tbs     olive oil            

1          cup      chicken stock          

1          cup      port wine            

 

Slice the tenderloin crosswise into medallions ½" thick.  Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper, and then dredge each in the flour to coat, shaking off any excess.

                                     

Heat the butter and oil in a heavy skillet at medium high.  Sauté the medallions in small batches until browned, 1 minute per side.  Turn only once.  Remove each batch to an ovenproof serving dish; keep warm in a 225-degree oven.

                                     

Prepare the sauce: put the skillet, with the meat drippings, on a high heat; add the chicken stock and wine.  Bring to a boil, scrapping and stirring until some of the broth evaporates.  Keep cooking the sauce until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 6-8 minutes.

 

Serve the meat with the sauce spooned over the top of each medallion.

 


Pork au Poivre

 

1          lb         pork tenderloin, trimmed

1          Tbs      coarsely ground black pepper

2          tsp       olive oil

Cooking spray

½         cup      fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

½         cup      dry red wine

1          tsp       Dijon mustard

1          tsp       tomato paste

¼         tsp       salt

 

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

 

Slice the pork lengthwise, cutting to, but not through, the other side. Open halves, laying pork flat. Sprinkle each side of pork with 1-1/2 tsp pepper. Heat oil a large ovenproof skillet coated with cooking spray. Add pork; cook for 2 minutes on each side. Place the pan in oven, and bake at 425 °For 12 minutes or until meat thermometer registers 160 degrees (slightly pink). Remove pork from pan; keep warm.

 

Add broth and remaining ingredients to pan; stir well with a whisk. Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook until reduced to 1/2 cup (for about 3 minutes).

 

4 servings (serving size: 3 oz pork and 2 Tbs sauce)

 

 

 

 


Pork Piccata

 

A simple, classic and rustic Italian dish, this (originally) Veal dish lends itself to pork tenderloins and pounded chicken breasts or thighs as well.

 

1          lb         pork tenderloin, trimmed

3          Tbs      flour

2          tsp       lemon pepper

2          tsp       butter

¼         cup      dry sherry or white wine

¼         cup      lemon juice

4-6       each     thick lemon slices

4          Tbs      capers

 

Slice tenderloin into 8 equal pieces, flatten each piece gently to a scallop with a thickness of ⅛ inch.  Dredge scallops lightly with flour, sprinkle with lemon pepper.  Melt butter in nonstick pan over medium-high heat.  Quickly sauté scallops, turning once, until golden brown, about 4-5 minutes.  Add wine and lemon juice to skillet; shake pan gently and cook 2 minutes, until sauce is lightly thickened.  Serve garnished with lemon slices and capers.

 

 


Pork Tenderloin Stuffed with Prosciutto & Dried Fruit with Port Wine Sauce

 

½         cup      golden raisins
½         cup      dried cherries
1          cup      Tawny Port
2          Tbs      olive oil
½         cup      minced shallots
2          tsp       minced garlic
½         cup      fine dry breadcrumbs
½         tsp       chopped fresh thyme leaves
Pinch salt
Pinch freshly ground black pepper
4          oz        goat cheese, crumbled
4          oz        prosciutto, thinly sliced
2          x          3/4 pound to 1 pound pork tenderloins, butterflied and pounded

slightly to an even thickness between sheets of plastic wrap

1          Tbs      plus 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
Pear and Parsnip Puree, recipe follows
Port Wine Sauce, recipe follows
Fresh thyme sprigs, for garnish

 

Preheat the oven to 400 °F.

In a small bowl, combine the raisins and cranberries.

In a small saucepan, bring the Port to a simmer. Pour over the dry fruit and let sit until plump, about 10 minutes. Drain well and let the fruit cool.

In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots and garlic and cook, stirring, until soft, about 1 minute. Add the bread crumbs, thyme, salt, and pepper and stir until the bread crumbs are lightly toasted, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat and let cool.

In a medium bowl, combine the cooled fruit and bread crumb mixture. Add the cheese and stir to combine.

Lay the prosciutto slices over the butterflied pork to cover. Starting about 1/2-inch from the bottom and leaving 1/2-inch on either side, lay the bread crumb mixture in a uniform line across the meat. Pull the bottom edge of meat up and over the filling and roll up into a thick cylinder. Using butcher's twine, tie the meat to seal. Rub with vegetable oil on all sides and lightly season with salt and pepper.

In a large ovenproof skillet or roasting pan, sear the meat on all sides over medium-high heat, 3 to 5 minutes. Place in the oven and roast until cooked through and an instant-read thermometer registers an internal temperature of 155 °F to 160 °F, about 35 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes before carving. To serve, remove the butcher's twine from the roast and carve into slices about 1/2-inch thick. Spoon the Pear and Parsnip Puree onto the sides of 4 plates. Arrange the slices next to the puree, drizzle with the Port Wine Sauce and garnish with thyme sprigs.

Port Wine Sauce:
1          750ml  bottle Tawny Port
1          cup      veal stock
1          stick     very cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces

In a medium saucepan, bring the Port to a boil. Reduce the heat and cook at a low boil until reduced to a thick syrup, 1/4 to 1/3 cup in volume. Add the stock and cook until thick and reduced by half. Reduce the heat to low, and whisking constantly, add the butter several pieces at a time, adding more butter once the previous pieces have nearly been incorporated, removing the pan from the heat occasionally to prevent the sauce from getting too hot and breaking. Continue until the sauce is emulsified and all the butter has been added.

 

Pear and Parsnip Puree:
1 ½      lbs        parsnips, peeled and chopped
6          Tbs      unsalted butter
1          Tbs      light brown sugar
¼         tsp       round cinnamon
1/8       tsp       ground allspice
4          x          ripe Anjou pears, peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch pieces
2          Tbs      Frangelico or other nut-flavored liqueur such as Nocello
½         cup      sour cream
½         tsp       alt
½         tsp       freshly ground white pepper

 

Preheat the oven to 325 °F.

In a baking dish, combine the parsnips, 2 tablespoons of the butter, the brown sugar, cinnamon, and allspice and cover tightly with aluminum foil. Bake until the parsnips are tender, about 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and uncover.

In a large skillet, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter over medium heat. Add the pears and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add the liqueur and tilt the pan to ignite the contents. (Alternately, remove from the heat, light with a match, and return to the heat.) Cook while flaming for 2 minutes. Transfer to a food processor.

In a skillet, melt the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Cook, swirling the pan, until the butter is golden brown and has a nutty aroma. Add the browned butter, baked parsnips and their cooking liquid to the food processor. Puree on high speed for 30 seconds. Add the sour cream, salt, and pepper and process until smooth. Serve immediately or cover to keep warm until ready to serve.


Pork Tenderloin with Savory Cherry Port Sauce

 

2/3       cup      port or other sweet red wine

¾         cup      dried tart cherries

3          Tbs      all-purpose flour

½         tsp       ground coriander

¼         tsp       salt

¼         tsp       black pepper

1 ½      lbs        pork tenderloin, trimmed

1          Tbs      butter

2          Tbs      finely chopped shallots

1          cup      fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

 

Place port in a 1-cup glass measure. Microwave at high 20 seconds or until very warm. Combine port and cherries; cover and let stand 10 minutes or until soft. Drain cherries in a colander over a bowl, reserving port.

 

Combine flour, coriander, salt, and pepper in a shallow dish. Dredge pork in flour mixture. Melt butter in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork; cook 3 minutes on each side or until browned. Remove pork; stir in reserved port, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Add cherries and shallots. Reduce heat; cook 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in broth; bring to a simmer.

 

Return pork to pan. Partially cover and cook 10 minutes. Uncover and cook 12 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted into thickest portion registers 155 degrees (slightly pink), turning pork occasionally. Cut into slices, and serve with sauce.

 

 

6 servings (serving size: 3 oz meat and 2 Tbs sauce)

 

 

 

 

 


Pork Wellington

 

2          6 oz     pork tenderloins

4          oz        boursin cheese

1          Tbs      olive oil

6          oz        prosciutto (3 oz per tenderloin)

2          sheets  puff pastry, rolled to a 16 x 12 inch rectangle

1          x          egg, beaten with

1          Tbs      water

 

Trim off all silverskin (reserve tail for another use if you have it) Butterfly making a 1" deep incision down the length of each and stuff each one with half of the cheese.

 

Roll prosciutto around each tenderloin.

 

Sear in oil in a large skillet over med-high heat until prosciutto is brown and crisp on all sides.

 

(5-8 min) Chill thoroughly.

 

Wrap each tenderloin in puff pastry and transfer to a parchment-line baking sheet.

 

Brush Wellington's with egg wash and decorate with pastry cutouts if desired.

 

Cover with plastic and chill 1 hr (up to 24 hrs).

 

Bake at 400 deg in lower third of oven for 30-35 minutes until golden brown.

 

(you can brush with more egg wash again before you put them in the oven) Let rest 5 min. before slicing.  (Throw away the ends when slicing, it's mostly dough).

 

 

 

4-6 servings Change size or US/metric | 1 hour 35 minutes 1 hr prep

 

 

 

 

 


The Nightgown

 

1          cup      dried bread crumbs

All-purpose flour, as needed

3          large    eggs, beaten

Vegetable oil, for frying

2          x          ¼ inch thick lengthwise slices peeled eggplant

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2          x          very thin veal cutlets (about 3 oz), pounded very thin between 2 sheets of plastic wrap

1          oz        thinly sliced prosciutto

2          x          rectangles fresh mozzarella, plus 2 thin slices, 1/2 by 2-inch long

2          cups     tomato sauce, homemade or store bought

Grated Parmesan, as needed

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F.

Put the bread crumbs, flour, and eggs each in separate shallow, lipped plates.

 

Pour the oil in a medium skillet to a depth of 1/2-inch, and heat over medium-high heat. Dredge the eggplant in the flour, shake off any excess, and then dip in the eggs. Add the eggplant to the skillet and fry, turning once, until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain and season with salt and pepper.

 

Season the veal with salt and pepper, and dredge in the bread crumbs. Lay 1/2 of the prosciutto over each veal cutlet, place 1 rectangle of the mozzarella along the center of each, and roll tightly. Tuck in the ends of the rolls and press to seal. Dip each roll in the eggs, add to the skillet and cook, turning occasionally, until well browned, about 4 minutes.

 

Meanwhile, spread about 2 Tbs of tomato sauce on 1 side of each eggplant slice, and sprinkle with some of the Parmesan. Wrap each veal roll in an eggplant slice

 

Spread about 2 Tbs of the tomato sauce in the bottom of a small, shallow baking dish or skillet and arrange the veal rolls on top. Spoon the remaining 2 Tbs of sauce on top of the rolls and cover with the mozzarella slices. Sprinkle with a little Parmesan and bake in the oven until hot and browned, about 15 to 20 minutes.

 

Using a spatula, transfer the veal rolls to a plate and serve.

 

 


Sage Veal Chops

 

This is just another really good example of how a really simple set of ingredients, an extremely simple recipe, fast and easy, can result in a delicious dinner.

 

4          x          veal chops, 1-inch thick

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

6          sprigs   fresh sage, leaves stripped and chopped, about 4 Tbs

1          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan

2          Tbs      butter

½         cup      dry white wine, eyeball it

 

Heat a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium high heat. Season chops with salt and pepper and rub them each with about 1 Tbs of chopped sage. Rub the sage into meat on both sides of each chop. Add oil to the pan. Melt butter into the oil and add chops to the pan. Cook chops 5 minutes on each side and transfer to warm platter and let them rest. Add wine to the pan and scrape up drippings. Spoon drippings down over the chops and serve.

 

Remember that all Veal dishes can just as easily be prepared with Pork Tenderloin slices or chicken breasts or thighs pounded thin.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Saltimbocca Alla Romana

 

4          5-oz     thinly sliced veal cutlets (scaloppini)

4          slices    thinly sliced prosciutto

8          x          fresh sage leaves, plus more for garnish

All-purpose flour, for dredging

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

2          Tbs      dry white wine

1/4       cup      chicken broth

Lemon wedges, for serving

 

Put the veal cutlets side by side on a sheet of plastic wrap. Lay a piece of prosciutto on top of each piece of veal and cover with another piece of plastic. Gently flatten the cutlets with a rolling pin or meat mallet, until the pieces are about 1/4-inch thick and the prosciutto has adhered to the veal. Remove the plastic wrap and lay a couple of sage leaves in the center of each cutlet. Weave a toothpick in and out of the veal to secure the prosciutto and sage. Put some flour in a shallow platter and season with a fair amount of salt and pepper; mix with a fork to combine. Dredge the veal in the seasoned flour, shaking off the excess.

Heat the oil and 1 Tbs of the butter and in a large skillet over medium flame. Put the veal in the pan, prosciutto-side down first. Cook for 3 minutes to crisp it up and then flip the veal over and Sauté the other side for 2 minutes, until golden. Transfer the saltimbocca to a serving platter, remove the toothpicks, and keep warm.

 

Add the wine to the pan, stirring to bring up all the delicious flavor in the bottom; let the wine cook down for a minute to burn off some of the alcohol. Add the chicken broth and remaining Tbs of butter, swirl the pan around. Season with salt and pepper. Pour the sauce over the saltimbocca, garnish with sage leaves and lemon wedges; serve immediately.

 

Remember that all Veal dishes can just as easily be prepared with Pork Tenderloin slices or chicken breasts or thighs pounded thin.

 


San Francisco Pork Chops

 

4          single   pork chops, ½ - ¾ inches, or pork tenderloin medallions   

1          Tbs      oil               

1          Tbs      garlic, minced          

2          tsp      oil               

4          Tbs     dry sherry or broth       

4          Tbs     soy sauce            

2          Tbs     brown sugar           

¼         tsp      crushed red pepper        

2          tsp      cornstarch            

2          Tbs     water              

 

Trim pork chops of fat.                          

 

Heat oil in skillet.  Brown chops on both sides.            

 

Remove and add a little more oil if needed.               

 

Sauté garlic for a minute, being careful not to burn it.        

 

Combine oil, sherry or broth, soy sauce, brown sugar and red pepper.  

 

Place chops in skillet.  Pour sauce over them.  Cover tightly.     

 

Simmer over low heat until chops are tender and cooked through, 30 to 35 minutes.  Add a little water, 1 to 2 Tbsp.  if needed to keep sauce from cooking down too much.  Turn once.                     

 

Remove chops to platter.  Stir in cornstarch dissolved in water.  Cook until thickened.                           

 

Pour over chops and serve.                       

 

 

 


Spicy Cherry Ribs

 

2          tsp       yellow mustard
2          x          pork rib racks (St. Louis style spare ribs)
1          tsp       salt
1          tsp       freshly ground black pepper
½         tsp       cayenne pepper
½         tsp       paprika
½         tsp       ground cumin
1          recipe   Spicy Cherry Glaze, recipe follows
2          Tbs      scallions, chopped
1          tsp       sesame seeds

Trim pork chops of fat.                         

 

Place ribs onto aluminum foil. Brush the mustard onto the ribs. Mix dry ingredients thoroughly. Then cover the ribs with the rub. Let sit at room temperature for 45 minutes.

Preheat oven to 325 °F.

Wrap the ribs, meat side down, in the aluminum foil then place onto a baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, reduce the heat to 225 °F and cook for another 1 1/2 hours. Then, open the foil and cook for 1 hour. Remove ribs from oven, and discard the foil. Cut into 4-rib portions. Liberally slather on the Spicy Cherry Glaze, then place, bone side down, in a roasting pan. Pour the remaining sauce over the ribs and continue to cook for 1 1/2 hours, basting occasionally. When ribs are fork tender, place under broiler for 10 minutes to crisp the cherry glaze. Serve immediately garnished with scallions and sesame seeds.

Spicy Cherry Glaze:
1          Tbs      oil
1          cup      diced red onion
4          Tbs      minced ginger
3          cups     canned cherries in syrup, preferably Bing
2          Tbs      minced garlic
2          Tbs      tequila (recommended: Cabo Wabo Resposado)
3          Tbs      hot sauce (recommended: Sriracha)
1          tsp       sesame oil
1          Tbs      sherry wine vinegar
4          Tbs      soy sauce
1          tsp       salt
1          Tbs      freshly ground black pepper

In a medium sauté pan over medium heat, add oil, onion, ginger, cherries and garlic. Sauté until lightly caramelized. Deglaze with tequila, hot sauce, sesame oil, sherry wine vinegar and soy sauce. Let simmer for 15 minutes. Season, with salt and pepper.


Vanilla and Bourbon Marinated Pork Loin

 

----Pork----

2          each     vanilla beans, split and scraped

1          tsp       orange zest

1          tsp       cracked black pepper

1          cup      brown sugar

1          cup      cider vinegar

2          each     bay leaves

2          cups     bourbon

1          each     pork loin, trimmed and cleaned (about 6 lbs)

 

----For the Pecan Gravy:----

1          cup      chopped pecans

1/4       cup      butter

1          cup      chopped trinity (equal amt onion, celery, green pepper, finely diced

1/2       Tbs      chopped garlic

1/8       tsp       cayenne pepper

3          Tbs      flour

1          cup      pork marinating liquid

1          qt         chicken stock

 

In a small saucepan, combine vanilla beans, orange zest, black pepper, brown sugar, cider vinegar and bay leaves and cook over medium heat until sugar is melted and flavors have begun to meld, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add bourbon. Cool marinade completely before pouring over pork loin in a glass casserole or bowl. Refrigerate for 48 hours, turning every 12 hours.

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F. Remove pork from marinade and pat dry. Transfer marinade to a saucepan and reduce volume by 1/3. Reserve to use in the pecan gravy. Place pork on a rack on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes, or until a thermometer reads 155 °F. Let rest 5 minutes before slicing. Serve with Pecan Gravy and Sour Cream Mashed Sweet Potatoes.

 

For the Pecan Gravy:

In a saucepan cook pecans in butter until you get a pleasant pecan aroma. Add trinity and cook for 2 minutes. Add garlic, cayenne pepper and cook for 2 minutes. Add flour, cook for 2 minutes, then add marinating liquid and chicken stock. Continue to cook until sauce has thickened enough to coat the back of a spoon. Season to taste with salt and pepper.


Veal Baci

 

1          cup      all-purpose flour

1          cup      grated Parmesan

1/3       cup      grated Pecorino Romano

3          x          eggs, lightly beaten

2 ¼      lbs        veal, cut into pieces and pounded thin

¼         cup      vegetable oil

1          x          shallot, diced

1          Tbs      sweet cream butter

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

3          x          lemons, juiced

1          sprig    fresh parsley leaves, chopped

¼         cup      white wine

 

 

Place flour and cheeses in a large flat dish. Put the eggs in a bowl large enough to dip the veal. Lightly flour the veal, then dip in eggs and flour mixture. With the tip of a chef's knife poke about 10 holes in each piece of veal. In a 12-inch sauté pan, heat the oil (reserving a little). Add the veal and cook until lightly brown on both sides, approximately 1 minute per side. Remove the veal and place on a flat dish lined with paper towels. Reserve.

In a separate 12-inch sauté pan add remaining oil and heat. When oil is warm add shallots and sauté for 5 seconds. Over a medium flame add butter, salt, pepper, lemon juice, parsley and white wine. Put veal in sauce and cook for 2 minutes. Remove veal and reduce sauce in pan. When reduced by 1/2, spoon sauce over veal and enjoy!

 

Remember that all Veal dishes can just as easily be prepared with Pork Tenderloin slices or chicken breasts or thighs pounded thin.

 


Veal Milanese

 

4          each     large eggs

1 ½      cups     all-purpose flour

2          cups     plain dry bread crumbs

2          tsp       dried basil

1          tsp       dried thyme

2          lbs        thinly sliced veal scaloppini

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2          cups     vegetable oil

1          each     lemon, cut into wedges

 

Preheat oven to 175 °F.

In a shallow dish, beat eggs and season with salt and pepper. Pour flour into another shallow dish. Mix together the bread crumbs, basil and thyme in a third shallow dish. Have ready one large plate.

 

Season the veal with salt and pepper. Working with 1 piece of veal at a time, dip it first in the flour, shaking off excess. Next, place the floured veal into the beaten eggs, coating completely. Place the veal into the bread crumb mixture and gently press crumbs into the veal. Set aside on large plate and continue with remaining veal slices.

 

In a large skillet with high sides, heat the oil to 375 °F. Have ready a baking sheet fitted with a rack. Carefully place 2 pieces of breaded veal in the hot oil and fry until golden brown on both sides, about 6 to 8 minutes total. Place cooked veal on rack, season with salt and place in oven to keep warm. Continue with remaining veal.

 

Serve with lemon wedges.

 

Remember that all Veal dishes can just as easily be prepared with Pork Tenderloin slices or chicken breasts or thighs pounded thin.


Veal Rolls Stuffed with Prosciutto and Cheese

 

12        x          thin slices veal, about 1 ½ lbs, cut as for scaloppini

¼         cup      chopped prosciutto or cooked ham

½         lb         ground lean pork

1          tsp       butter

3          Tbs      butter

½         cup      finely chopped onion

½         tsp       finely minced garlic

½         cup      fine fresh bread crumbs

1/8       tsp       grated nutmeg

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

½         tsp       grated lemon rind

1          x          egg, lightly beaten

¼         cup      freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Salt, to taste

¼         cup      flour

½         cup      dry white wine

1          cup      fresh or canned chicken broth

 

Put the slices of veal between sheets of plastic wrap and pound with a flat mallet without breaking the tissues. Set aside. Combine the prosciutto and pork in a mixing bowl. Melt 1 Tbs of the butter in a small skillet and cook the onion, stirring, until it is wilted. Add this to the mixing bowl. Add the garlic, bread crumbs, nutmeg, pepper, lemon rind, egg and cheese. Blend well. Lay out the pieces of veal on a flat surface. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Spoon an equal portion of the filling on each slice. Wrap the meat around the filling, folding and tucking the ends in envelope fashion. Tie each roll neatly in 2 places with string. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Dredge the rolls all over in flour and shake off any excess. Select a heavy skillet large enough to hold the rolls in 1layer without crowding them. Melt the remaining 3 Tbs of butter and, when it is quite hot but not browned, add the veal rolls. Cook, turning occasionally, until the are nicely browned all over, 3 or 4 minutes. Reduce

the heat and continue cooking over moderately low heat for about 15 minutes. Add the wine and stir to dissolve the brown particles that cling to the bottom and sides of the pan. Add the chicken broth. Bring to the boil and let cook over high heat for about 5 minutes. Remove the strings and serve the veal rolls with the sauce spooned over.

 

Remember that all Veal dishes can just as easily be prepared with Pork Tenderloin slices or chicken breasts or thighs pounded thin.

 


Veal Rolls with Pancetta

 

1          lb         veal scaloppini from the butcher counter

¼         cup      chopped flat-leaf parsley, a couple of handfuls

Salt and pepper

1          lb         smoked fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced

1          jar        (16 to 18-oz) roasted red peppers, drained and sliced

1/3       lb         pancetta, sliced like thin cut bacon at deli counter

2          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil, plus some for drizzling

1          clove    cracked garlic

1          sack     (10-oz) baby spinach or triple washed spinach leaves

¼-1/3   cup      white wine or dry vermouth

 

 

Arrange scaloppini on waxed paper or plastic. Sprinkle veal with parsley, salt and pepper. Place a thin layer of cheese and a few slices of roasted pepper on each scaloppini. Roll veal and wrap each roll with a slice of pancetta. Secure with toothpicks.

Fry veal rolls in a thin layer of extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan, until golden all over and pancetta is crisp, 5 or 6 minutes. Remove from pan to warm platter. Return skillet to heat. Add a drizzle of oil and cracked garlic. Wilt spinach in pan, add a touch of wine or vermouth to lift drippings and combine them with greens. Using tongs, place a bed of spinach on each dinner plate and top with veal rolls. Serve immediately.

 

Remember that all Veal dishes can just as easily be prepared with Pork Tenderloin slices or chicken breasts or thighs pounded thin.


Veal Scaloppini with Madeira and Porcini Mushrooms

 

3/4       oz        dried porcinis

1          cup      veal or chicken stock

1 1/2    lbs        veal scaloppini, pounded and flattened

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Seasoned flour, for dredging

2          Tbs      vegetable oil

4          Tbs      butter

2          each     shallots, minced

2          cloves garlic, minced

1/2       cup      Madeira wine

3/4       cup      heavy cream

 

In a small saucepan, combine dried porcinis with veal stock, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and steep for 30 minutes. Remove porcinis from liquid, rinse under running water, chop finely, and set aside. Strain liquid through a fine sieve and reserve.

Season veal with salt and pepper on both sides and lightly dredge in seasoned flour. (Do not do this until you are ready to cook the veal.) In a skillet over high heat, add 1 Tbs of the oil and heat until hot but not smoking. Add 2 Tbs of the butter and Sauté half of the veal, cooking for 1 minute on each side, until golden brown and crispy. Transfer veal to a warm plate and set aside.

 

Sauté remaining veal in remaining oil and butter, wiping skillet clean between batches if necessary.

 

Transfer veal to warm plate and add reserved porcini mushrooms, shallots, garlic, and Madeira, scraping pan bottom with a wooden spoon. When Madeira has reduced by half, add reserved porcini broth, and cook for 3 minutes or until volume is reduced by half. Add heavy cream and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, until sauce is thickened and coats the back of a spoon. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and return veal to skillet to heat through, about 1 1/2 minutes. Serve immediately with sauce spooned over the top.

 

Remember that all Veal dishes can just as easily be prepared with Pork Tenderloin slices or chicken breasts or thighs pounded thin.


Veal Tournedos In Cream Sauce (Veau A La Crème)

 

1          piece    Gruyère, rind discarded (about ¾ lb)

4          slices    Canadian bacon

1 ¼      lb         veal tenderloin, trimmed and cut crosswise into 4 equal pieces

1          Tbs      unsalted butter

½         cup      crème fraîche

 

Preheat oven to 450 °F.

 

Using a cheese planer or a sharp knife, cut 4 thin slices (4- by 2-inch) from Gruyère.

 

Cook bacon in a ovenproof 10-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat, turning once, until lightly browned, about 2 minutes total, and transfer to a plate. (Do not clean skillet.)

 

Pat veal dry and season with salt and pepper. Heat butter in skillet over moderately high heat until foam subsides, then sauté tournedos until browned, about 4 minutes total. (Veal will be only partially cooked.)

 

Remove skillet from heat and put a slice of bacon, then cheese and crème fraîche, on each tournedos. Roast in middle of oven, uncovered, until cheese begins to melt, 8 to 10 minutes. (Veal should be slightly pink inside.)

 

Transfer tournedos to plates. Whisk pan juices until blended, season with salt and pepper, then divide among plates.

 

Remember that all Veal dishes can just as easily be prepared with Pork Tenderloin slices or chicken breasts or thighs pounded thin.

 


Who Loves Ya Baby-Back Ribs?

 

I think the only way to do ribs well is to boil (or in this case oven-boil) the ribs first, to get the tenderest ribs around.

 

2 whole slabs pork baby back ribs

Dry Rub:
8          Tbs      light brown sugar, tightly packed
3          Tbs      kosher salt
1          Tbs      chili powder
½         tsp       ground black pepper
¼ - ½   tsp       cayenne pepper  (depending on whether or not you want a bite)
½         tsp       jalapeno seasoning
½         tsp       Old Bay Seasoning
½         tsp       rubbed thyme
½         tsp       onion powder

Braising Liquid:
1          cup      white wine
2          Tbs      white wine vinegar
2          Tbs      Worcestershire sauce
1          Tbs      honey
2          cloves  garlic, chopped

Preheat oven to 250 degrees.

Cut full slabs into half slabs.  In a bowl, combine all dry ingredients and mix well. Sprinkle each side generously with the dry rub. Pat the dry rub into the meat.  Place each set of slabs of baby back ribs (one on top of the other) on a piece of heavy-duty aluminum foil, shiny side down. Refrigerate the ribs for a minimum of 1 hour.

Note: I’ve found not putting them in foil but in large (or many of them into an XL 2-gallon) ziplock freezer bag overnight much better.  Then, when you are ready for the next step, just transfer them from bag to foil.

In a microwavable container, combine all ingredients for the braising liquid. Microwave on high for 1 minute.

Place the ribs on a baking sheet. Open one end of the foil on each slab and pour half of the braising liquid into each foil packet. Tilt the baking sheet in order to equally distribute the braising liquid. Braise the ribs in the oven for 3 hours.

Now, two thoughts on the glaze or sauce.  The original one is to transfer the braising liquid into a medium saucepot. Bring the liquid to a simmer and reduce by half or until of a thick syrup consistency. Brush the glaze onto the ribs. Place onto the grill or under the broiler just until the glaze caramelizes lightly. Baste with the sauce regularly throughout the grilling process.   The alternative, and much easier, is to dump the brazing liquid and instead simply use your favorite BBQ sauce.  A good smoky one is my favorite, but whatever you like.  Slice each slab into 2 rib bone portions. Place the remaining hot glaze into a bowl and toss the rib portions in the glaze or BBQ sauce.


Main Dishes - Poultry

 

                                                         

 

Bacon Breasts

 

An absolute family favorite, a comfort food, this is sure to become a regular.

 

4          each     chicken breasts with tenders still attached

4          pieces  bacon (one for each breast)

1          med     onion, finely chopped

1          stick     butter

1 ½      cups     brown sugar

½         cup      Worcestershire sauce

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.  Fry the bacon until crisp.  Remove the bacon, and in the fat from the bacon, fry the onion.

 

Clean and trim fat off of chicken, but leave the tenders attached.  The tender is attached to the breast in two places, along the edge and in the center.  Cut the center attachment away so that the tender opens up on the edge, like a book.  Place one piece of bacon on the breast, and fold the tender back over it, securing the bacon between.  Place each of the pieces in a glass baking pan.  If your breast does not have a tender attached, simply slit the breast open down an edge so that you can open the whole breast like a book, and slip the piece of bacon in between the two flat pieces.

 

Melt the butter (in the mixing bowl in the microwave is fine), and mix the butter, onion (well drained) brown sugar and Worcestershire sauce.  Mix well, and pour over the chicken, trying to cover up as much of the chicken as possible.

 

Bake in oven for 1 hour.  I like to use the sauce for dipping, but that isn’t necessary.

 


Bacon-Wrapped Cornish Hens With Raspberry Balsamic Glaze

 

Shelley prefers this dish with pieces of chicken (breasts and thighs, whatever your preference) instead of the hens.  The hens tend to be a bit messy in the eating, but Flip still thinks that they lend a lot to the rustic look and feel (not to mention taste) of the dish.

 

2/3       cup      seedless raspberry jam

1/2       cup      balsamic vinegar

16        slices    bacon (3/4 lb)

4          x          Cornish hens

 

Briskly simmer jam and vinegar in a small saucepan, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until glaze is reduced to about 1/2 cup, about 8 minutes. Cool to room temperature (glaze will thicken slightly as it cools).

 

Preheat oven to 450 °F.

 

Cook bacon in batches in a large heavy skillet over moderate heat, turning occasionally, until some of fat is rendered but bacon is still translucent and pliable, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

 

Cut out and discard backbone from each hen with kitchen shears, then halve each hen lengthwise. Pat hens dry and season with salt and pepper, then arrange, cut sides down, in a large roasting pan. Brush hens liberally with glaze, reserving remainder, and wrap 2 slices of bacon around each half hen, tucking ends under. Roast in middle of oven, brushing with pan juices and reserved glaze twice (every 10 minutes), until juices run clear when a thigh is pierced, 30 to 35 minutes.

 

Sweet, sour, and meaty, this is summer food to eat with your hands.

 

 


Caramelized Maui Onion and Barbeque Duck Quesadillas

 

2          whole  boneless skinless duck breasts

1          x          lime, juiced

1          cup      sour cream

Salt and pepper

½         Tbs      canola oil

1          cups     Barbeque sauce

8          x          flour tortillas

1          x          Maui Onion, sliced thin, Sautéed to golden brown

1          x          ripe mango, peeled, seeded, and cut into thin strips

1          x          roasted poblano chili, peeled, seeded, and cut into thin strips

1          small    red onion, cut into thin rings and grilled

1          cup      grated jalapeno Jack cheese

1          Tbs      freshly chopped cilantro

4          sprigs   fresh cilantro

 

Prepare a smoker for cold smoke. Place duck breasts on a smoker rack and put in the smoker for 15 minutes. Remove from the smoker.

 

In a small bowl add fresh lime juice to sour cream and stir. Season with salt, to taste, and refrigerate until ready to serve.

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F. Place the duck breasts in an ovenproof sauté pan and place in the oven. Roast duck for 10 minutes or until medium rare. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

 

Using a sharp knife, dice the duck breast into 1/2-inch pieces. Place the canola oil in a large sauté pan over medium high heat. Add diced duck and season with salt and pepper. Stir in the barbeque sauce and bring to a boil and immediately remove from heat.

 

Place 4 flour tortillas on a clean cutting board. Divide the duck mixture onto the tortillas. Sprinkle the sautéed Maui onion, mango, poblano chili, red onion, cheese, and cilantro evenly over duck mixture. Top with the remaining 4 tortillas and brush each side with canola oil. Bring a large sauté pan or griddle to medium heat. Place 1 tortilla stack in the pan or griddle and cook until golden brown or about 3 minutes. Using a spatula flip tortilla over to cook other side. Remove from pan and place on cutting board and cut into 6 wedges. Place on a warm plate and dab lime sour cream on each wedge and garnish with a cilantro sprig. Repeat with the remaining tortilla stacks.

 

This recipe was provided by professional chefs and has been scaled down from a bulk recipe provided by a restaurant. The FN chefs have not tested this recipe, in the proportions indicated, and therefore, we cannot make any representation as to the results.

 


Champagne Chicken

 

Another, or actually THE family favorite comfort food, this one is quick and easy, and wonderful.

 

4          each     chicken breasts, or preferable 12 to 16 tenders

1          cup      flour

Salt and Pepper

3          Tbs      Olive Oil

1          can       Chicken Broth

1 ½      cups     White Wine

3          Tbs      Butter

1          lb         Mushrooms

½         pint      Heavy cream

 

Clean chicken.  Place flour, salt and pepper in a plastic (Ziploc) bag, add chicken and shake well to cover chicken with coating of flour.  Heat oil in large pan and brown chicken on both sides. 

 

Preheat oven to 350°.  Remove the chicken from the pan, but keep the pan with all of the juices for later.  Place chicken in large glass or Pyrex cooking pan, cover with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes.  Remove from oven, add chicken broth and wine.  Make sure both broth and wine are at room temperature, not chilled.  Adding cold liquids to hot glass pans is a bad idea.  Replace in oven, uncovered, for another 30 minutes or so, until about a third of the liquid is left.

 

While the chicken is finishing up, add the butter to the pan that the chicken was browned in, and sauté the mushrooms until well browned, even over browned.  Turn the heat down and add the heavy cream.  Cook on low to medium heat until reduced a bit. 

 

When the chicken is finished, pour everything, chicken and liquids, onto the serving platter, then pour mushroom mixture over it and serve.

 

 

 


Chicken and Sweet-Potato Croquettes

 

1/3       cup      chopped onion

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

¼         cup      all-purpose flour 1/2 cup additional, for dredging the croquettes

¼         cup      milk

¼         cup      chicken broth

2          cups     finely chopped cooked chicken or turkey

½         cup      mashed sweet potatoes

1/8       tsp       cayenne

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

An egg wash made by beating lightly 2 large eggs with 1 Tbs water

1 ½      cups     fine fresh bread crumbs

Oil, for frying

 

In a small saucepan cook the onion in the butter over moderately low heat, stirring, for 5 minutes, stir in 1/4 cup of the flour, and cook the roux mixture over low heat, stirring, for 3 minutes. Stir in the milk and the broth, cook the mixture, stirring, until it forms a paste, and cook the paste, stirring, for 3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the chicken, the sweet potatoes, the cayenne, and salt and black pepper, to taste, and combine the mixture well.

Chill the chicken mixture, covered, for 2 hours, or until it is firm, and roll level Tbs of it into balls. Dredge the balls in the additional 1/2 cup flour, shaking off the excess, coat them thoroughly with the egg wash, letting the excess drip off, and dredge them in the bread crumbs, transferring them to wax paper as they are coated. The croquettes may be made up to this point 1 month in advance and kept wrapped well and frozen. Thaw the croquettes for 1 hour. If serving the croquettes immediately, let them dry at room temperature for 1 hour.

 

In a large saucepan heat 2 inches of the oil until a deep-fat thermometer registers 365 °F. Fry the croquettes in batches for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes, or until they are golden brown, and transfer them with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Serve the croquettes with mango chutney, if desired.

 


Chicken Breasts Stuffed with Truffle Butter

 

Truffle Butter:

1          stick     unsalted butter, at room temperature

2          Tbs      white truffle oil (or truffle trimmings, or shaved fresh truffle)

1          pinch   fleur de sel or kosher salt

4          x          Boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, 6 to 8-oz each

Salt

Freshly ground white pepper

2          large    eggs

1          Tbs      water

½         cup      all-purpose flour

¾         cup      fine dry bread crumbs

2          Tbs      very finely grated Parmesan

3          Tbs      clarified butter or vegetable oil, plus 1 Tbs

1          x          shallot, finely chopped

1          tsp       crushed red pepper flakes

1          clove    garlic, minced

4          oz        fresh baby spinach

 

 

Truffle Butter:

In a bowl, cream together the butter with the truffle oil and fleur de sel. Divide the butter into 4 equal amounts and place each on a piece of plastic wrap. Mold each into a plug the size of a small finger and wrap tightly. Refrigerate until firm before using.  I even prefer to stick them in the freezer for a half an hour before using to make them easier to work with.  They can be refrigerated for up to 1 week and frozen for up to 1 month before use.

 

Place each chicken breast between 2 sheets of plastic wrap. Using the flat side of a meat mallet, pound the breasts to a 1/4-inch thickness, being careful not to tear the meat. Remove the top piece of the plastic wrap and season lightly with salt and pepper.

 

Insert 1 plug of truffle butter in the center of each breast. Roll the meat up and over to completely enclose the butter. Secure the meat with a toothpick.

 

In a shallow bowl, beat the eggs and water. In another bowl, place the flour and lightly season with salt and white pepper. In a third bowl, combine the bread crumbs and Parmesan and lightly season with salt and white pepper. One at a time, turn the stuffed chicken breasts in the flour to lightly coat, shaking to remove any excess. Dip in the beaten eggs, letting the excess drip off, then dredge in the bread crumbs to coat completely. Refrigerate until very cold, at least 30 minutes or until ready to cook.

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F.

 

Heat 3 Tbs of the clarified butter in a large, ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken breasts and cook, turning, until browned on all sides, 2 to 3 minutes.

 

Place in the oven to finish cooking, about 12 minutes.

 

While the chicken is cooking, heat the remaining 1 Tbs of clarified butter over medium-high heat.

 

Add the shallots, red pepper flakes, and garlic and cook, stirring, until tender, about 3 minutes. Add the spinach and cook until just wilted, about 3 minutes. Lightly season with salt and remove from the heat.

 

Remove the chicken from the oven. Place 1 chicken breast on each of 4 plates and arrange the spinach around the sides.

 

Serve immediately.

 


Chicken Breast With Sage & Nutmeg

 

  4        single  (4 oz.) boneless skinned          

  1        single  chicken breasts                   

  2        Tbs      flour                             

  2        Tbs      finely chopped fresh sage         

  1/4     tsp       grated nutmeg                     

  1/8     tsp       salt, 1/8 t. pepper               

  1        Tbs      olive oil                         

  1/4     cup      dry vermouth                      

  1        med     size red bell pepper cut into julienne strips          

  1        single  fresh sage sprigs                 

 

Trim Fat From Chicken. Combine Flour, Sage, Nutmeg, Salt & Pepper. Dredge Chicken in This Mixture & Set Aside. Heat Oil in Large Skillet Over Medium-High Heat Until Hot. Add Chicken; Cook 6 To 7 Min. On Each Side OR Until Browned. Add Vermouth & Bell Pepper. Reduce Heat & Simmer 5 Min. OR Until Chicken Is Tender. Transfer Chicken To Platter; Spoon Sauce Over Chicken & Garnish With Sage Sprigs.

 

 


Chicken Breast with Sage and Prosciutto

 

6          x          chicken breast halves, each about 6 oz.

6          x          chicken drumsticks, each about 4 oz.

6          x          chicken thighs, each about 5 oz.

18        thin      slices prosciutto

18        fresh    sage leaves, plus sage sprigs for garnish

2          Tbs      olive oil

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

 

 

Very little effort is needed to prepare this dish, and it is an easy recipe to double for a large group. The pleasant mustiness of the sage permeates the chicken hot from the oven. Any leftovers are delicious served cold the next day, when the distinctive flavor of the prosciutto predominates.

 

Preheat an oven to 400 °F.

 

Rinse the chicken pieces and pat dry with paper towels. Trim the excess fat from the prosciutto, then cut the slices to the dimensions of the chicken pieces.

 

Carefully slide your fingers under the skin on each chicken piece, separating it from the meat but leaving it attached on one side. Place a slice of prosciutto directly on the meat and top it with a sage leaf. Carefully pull the skin back in place and press gently with your palm to secure it.

 

Arrange the chicken pieces in 1 or 2 shallow baking dishes or in a roasting pan large enough to hold them in a single layer. Brush the skin with the olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.

 

Roast until the skin is brown and crispy, and the juices run clear when a thigh is pierced at the thickest part with a fork, about 55 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

 

Transfer the chicken pieces to a warmed platter and garnish with sage sprigs. Serve immediately. Serves 10 to 12.


Chicken Cordon Bleu

 

4          x          double chicken breasts (about 7-oz each), skinless and boneless

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

8          thin      slices deli ham

16        thin      slices Gruyere or Swiss cheese

2          tsp       fresh thyme leaves

¼         cup      flour

1          cup      panko bread crumbs

1          tsp       olive oil

2          x          eggs

2          tsp       water

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F. Lay the chicken between 2 pieces of plastic wrap. Using the flat side of a meat mallet, gently pound the chicken to 1/4-inch thickness. Take care not to pound too hard because the meat may tear or create holes. Lay 2 slices of cheese on each breast, followed by 2 slices of ham, and 2 more of cheese; leaving a 1/2-inch margin on all sides to help seal the roll. Tuck in the sides of the breast and roll up tight like a jellyroll. Squeeze the log gently to seal.

Season the flour with salt and pepper; spread out on waxed paper or in a flat dish. Mix the breadcrumbs with thyme, kosher salt, pepper, and oil. The oil will help the crust brown. Beat together the eggs and water, the mixture should be fluid. Lightly dust the chicken with flour, then dip in the egg mixture. Gently coat in the bread crumbs. Carefully transfer the roulades to a baking pan and bake for 20 minutes until browned and cooked through. Cut into pinwheels before serving.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Chicken Cutlets with Artichokes, Tomato, and Mozzarella

 

2          x          skinless boneless whole chicken breast, halved,

the fillets separated, and pounded 1/4-inch thick to form 4 cutlets

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

½         cup      all-purpose flour seasoned with salt and pepper, for dredging the cutlets

¼         cup      unsalted butter

2          Tbs      olive oil

1          tsp       minced garlic, or to taste

¼         cup      dry white wine

¼         cup      fresh lemon juice

8          x          1/4-inch-thick slices of tomato

1          cup      sliced drained marinated artichoke hearts

8          x          1/4-inch-thick slices of mozzarella

2          Tbs      minced fresh parsley leaves

 

Sprinkle the chicken cutlets with salt and pepper, to taste, and dredge them in the flour, coating them thoroughly and shaking off the excess.

In a heavy skillet, heat 2 Tbs of the butter and the oil over moderately high heat until the foam subsides. Sauté the cutlets in 2 batches for 1 minute on each side, or until they are just cooked through, transferring them as they are cooked to a heated flameproof platter.

 

Remove the skillet from the heat, add the garlic, and cook it over moderately low heat, stirring, until it just begins to color. Add the wine and the lemon juice and simmer the mixture until it is reduced by half.

 

Remove the skillet from the heat, add the remaining 2 Tbs butter, and swirl the skillet until it is incorporated. Pour the sauce over the cutlets and top the cutlets with the tomato, the artichoke hearts, and the mozzarella. Broil the cutlets under a preheated broiler about 3 inches from the heat until the mozzarella is melted and sprinkle the cutlets with the parsley.

 


Chicken Diablo

 

2          Tbs      Butter

1          cup      sliced mushrooms

¼         cup      sherry or white wine

8          oz        cream cheese, softened

1          tsp       dried thyme

1          tsp       garlic salt

1          tsp       dried oregano

4          x          boneless chicken breasts, pounded flat

¼         cup      dark brown sugar

¼         cup      bacon, fried and chopped

¼         cup      Dijon mustard

1/3       cup      chopped fresh parsley

 

The chicken is wrapped around a savory creamy filling and sprinkled with a sweet and crunchy topping.  Serve with Fettuccine Alfredo. 

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.  In a small skillet, add the butter.  Sauté mushrooms until softened.  Add wine, and cook down to ½ volume.  Set aside to cool.  In a bowl, combine cream cheese, thyme, garlic salt and oregano.  Add mushrooms and stir to combine.  Pound out each chicken breast until flat.  Spread with equal parts of the filling and roll chicken up, then place seam-side down in a baking pan.  In another bowl, mix the sugar, bacon, mustard and parsley.  Spread mixture on top of the chicken.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.


Chicken Enchiladas

 

3          Tbs      vegetable oil

1 ½      lbs        skinless boneless chicken breast

Salt and pepper, to taste

2          tsp       cumin powder

2          tsp       garlic powder

1          tsp       Mexican Spice Blend

1          red       onion, chopped

2          cloves  garlic, minced

1          cup      frozen corn, thawed

5          x          whole green chilies, canned

4          x          chipotle chilies, canned

1          28-oz   can stewed tomatoes

1          cup      cheddar and Jack Cheeses, shredded

16        x          corn tortillas

1 ½      cups     enchilada sauce, canned

Garnish: chopped cilantro, chopped scallions, sour cream, chopped tomatoes

 

Coat large sauté pan with oil. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Brown chicken over medium heat, allow 7 minutes each side or until no longer pink. Sprinkle chicken with cumin, garlic powder and Mexican spices before turning. Remove chicken to a platter, allow to cool.

Sauté onion and garlic in chicken drippings until tender. Add corn and chiles. Stir well to combine. Add canned tomatoes, sauté 1 minute.

 

Pull chicken breasts apart by hand into shredded strips. Add shredded chicken to sauté pan, combine with vegetables. Dust the mixture with flour to help set.

 

Microwave tortillas on high for 30 seconds. This softens them and makes them more pliable. Coat the bottom of 2 (13 by 9-inch) pans with a ladle of enchilada sauce. Using a large shallow bowl, dip each tortilla in enchilada sauce to lightly coat. Spoon 1/4 cup chicken mixture in each tortilla. Fold over filling, place 8 enchiladas in each pan with seam side down. Top with remaining enchilada sauce and cheese.

 

Bake for 15 minutes in a preheated 350 °F oven until cheese melts. Garnish with cilantro, scallion, sour cream and chopped tomatoes before serving. Serve with Spanish rice and beans.

 

 

 

 


Chicken Etouffee

 

1          4 lb      chicken, cut into 8 pieces

Salt

Cayenne pepper

2          Tbs      vegetable oil

8          Tbs      unsalted butter

¾         cup      flour

1          cup      finely diced yellow onion

½         cup      finely chopped celery

½         cup      finely chopped bell pepper

2          x          bay leaves

2          cloves  garlic, minced

1          x          bottle dark lager or amber beer

1          qt         cold chicken stock

2          tsp       brown sugar

¼         cup      hot sauce

1          Tbs      Worcestershire Sauce

¼         cup      chopped parsley

 

Season the chicken pieces with salt and cayenne pepper.

Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven over medium high heat and sear chicken pieces on both sides until golden brown. Remove to a platter and reserve.

 

Add butter to pan and when melted, add flour, and stir to combine well. Continue to cook roux, stirring constantly, until chocolate brown, about 12 to 15 minutes.

 

Immediately add onion, celery, bell pepper, and bay leaves and cook until soft, 2 to 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook another 2 minutes, then add the beer and stir well to loosen any brown bits from pan bottom. Add the stock, brown sugar, hot sauce, and Worcestershire sauce and stir to combine well. Bring to a boil, return chicken pieces to the pot, and simmer for 1 hour and 15 minutes, until chicken is very tender.

 

Remove chicken pieces to a platter and when cool enough to handle, remove chicken meat from the bones. Return chicken meat to pot and continue to cook another 30 minutes, until sauce is thickened and flavorful and chicken is beginning to fall apart. Add chopped parsley and stir well to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary, and serve immediately over rice or other starch of choice.

 

 


Chicken Francesa

 

  4        large    boneless chicken breasts, halved

  1        cup      milk enough to soak chicken       

  1        cup      breadcrumbs                       

  1        cup      grated parmesan cheese            

  2        Tbs      chopped parsley                   

  1        cup      olive oil                         

  1        single  salt                               

  1        single  pepper                            

  1        single  lemon                             

  1        cup      white wine                        

  1        cup      chicken broth                     

  1/4     cup      lemon juice                        

  3        Tbs      butter                            

  1        single  Grand Marnier liqueur             

 

Remove the tenderloin from each half chicken breast and save. Fillet each half chicken breast into two slices to yield 12 pieces. Use flat of meat pounder and lightly pound each piece, including tenderloins. Soak all the chicken in milk about 10 minutes.  Mix breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, chopped parsley and dredge each slice of chicken in the mixture making sure each slice is well covered, pressing it in. Add oil to a large skillet and quickly braise breasts on each side until lightly browned. Do not over cook. Place one slice of lemon on top of each breast and place in a lightly buttered baking dish.

 

Remove all but 1 Tbsp. of oil from skillet leaving residue from chicken. Add white wine and boil until liquid is reduced by half. Add lemon juice and chicken broth and boil till reduced by half.  Add butter, stir until melted, then pour over chicken breasts. Next drizzle Grand Marnier over each slice of chicken breast according to taste, about 2-3 teaspoons each.  Bake at 350 F until liquid begins to bubble between 20-25 minutes and your finished. Good with buttered noodles, rice or potatoes.

 


Chicken, Ham and Smoked Sausage Gumbo

 

1          cup      vegetable oil

1          cup      all-purpose flour

1 ½      cups     chopped yellow onions

1          cup      chopped celery

1          cup      chopped green bell peppers

1          lb         hot smoked sausage, such as andouille or kielbasa,

cut crosswise into 1/2-inch slices

½         lb         smoked ham, cut into small cubes

1 ½      tsp       salt

¼         tsp       cayenne

¼         tsp       freshly ground black pepper

3          x          bay leaves

1          qt         chicken stock, recipe follows

3          cups     cooked chicken meat removed from carcass, recipe below

2          Tbs      chopped parsley

½         cup      chopped green onions

File powder, accompaniment

Hot Sauce, optional

4          cups     cooked long-grain white rice, accompaniment

 

In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat and stir in the flour. Stirring slowly and constantly for 20 to 25 minutes, make a dark brown roux, the color of chocolate.

Add the onions, celery, and bell peppers and continue to stir for 4 to 5 minutes, or until wilted. Add the sausage, ham, salt, cayenne, pepper, and bay leaves and stir well. Cook, stirring, for 3 to 4 minutes.

 

Add the cooled stock and stir well to combine with the roux mixture. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour.

 

Add the chicken and cook just until the chicken is heated through, about 5 minutes.

 

Remove from the heat and stir in the parsley and green onions. Ladle into deep soup bowls and sprinkle lightly with file powder. Serve with hot sauce, if desired. Place a scoop of rice in the middle and serve.

 

 

Chicken stock and meat:

1          x          chicken, cut into pieces, (3 1/2 to 4 pound)

2          ribs      celery, roughly chopped

1          large    carrot, roughly chopped

1          large    yellow onion, peeled and quartered

1          head    garlic, cut in 1/2 horizontally

3          x          bay leaves

2          sprigs   fresh thyme

Parsley stems

1          tsp       salt

½         tsp       black peppercorns

4          qt         water

 

 

To make the stock, in a large stockpot, combine all the ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, skimming the surface occasionally to remove any foam that forms on the surface.

Remove from the heat and strain through a fine mesh strainer into a clean container. Remove the meat from the bones and discard the bones and vegetables. Let cool completely, and refrigerate overnight. Skim any fat that forms on the surface after chilled. Keep refrigerated until ready to use, up to 3 days, or place in airtight containers and freeze for up to 2 months.

 

Yield: about 3 quarts, and 3 cups of cooked chicken meat

 


Chicken, Shrimp and Andouille Gumbo

 

2/3       cup      plus 1 Tbs vegetable oil

2          lbs        medium shrimp, shelled and deveined, shells reserved

2          lbs        chicken wings

Salt and freshly ground pepper

2          Tbs      tomato paste

4          qt         chicken stock or low-sodium broth

3          x          bay leaves

6          whole  chicken legs

1          cup      all-purpose flour

8          large    garlic cloves, finely chopped

6          large    scallions, white and green parts thinly sliced separately

4          med     celery ribs, cut into 1/2-inch dice

2          large    Spanish onions, coarsely chopped

2          med     green peppers, cut into 1/2-inch dice

1          lb         smoked andouille sausage, half finely chopped, half sliced into 1/4-inch rounds

2          tsp       dried thyme

1          tsp       cayenne pepper

1          lb         okra, stems trimmed, cut into 1/2-inch rounds

3          Tbs      filé powder (see Note)

 

In a large, heavy stockpot, heat 1 Tbs of the vegetable oil. Add the reserved shrimp shells and chicken wings, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until the chicken wings are browned, about 10 minutes. Add 1 Tbs of the tomato paste and cook, stirring, until glossy, about 2 minutes. Slowly pour in the stock, stirring with a wooden spoon to release any browned bits on the bottom of the pot. Add the bay leaves and bring to a boil. Skim the surface of the stock, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 1 1/2 hours, skimming occasionally.

Add the chicken legs to the stock and simmer until they are cooked through, about 40 minutes. Strain the stock into a heatproof bowl and transfer the chicken legs to a large plate. When the legs are cool enough to handle, remove the meat and discard the skin and bones. Tear the meat into 2-inch pieces and set aside. Skim the fat from the surface of the stock and reserve the stock.

In a large enameled cast-iron casserole, stir the remaining 2/3 cup of vegetable oil with the flour until smooth. Cook the oil and flour over moderately low heat, stirring constantly, until a deep brown roux forms, about 25 minutes. Add the garlic, scallion whites, celery, onions, green peppers and finely chopped andouille sausage. Cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables soften, about 15 minutes. Add the thyme, cayenne, 1 tsp of salt and 1/4 tsp of pepper and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the remaining 1 Tbs of tomato paste and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Gradually whisk in the reserved stock. Simmer over low heat for 1 hour, skimming occasionally.

Add the okra and simmer until just tender, about 8 minutes. Add the reserved shredded chicken and the andouille rounds and simmer for 10 minutes. Season the gumbo with salt and pepper. Add the shrimp and simmer for 1 minute. Turn off the heat and let the gumbo stand for a few minutes. Stir in the filé powder and scallion greens and serve hot with white rice.

Recipe can be prepared through Step 3 up to 3 days ahead and refrigerated. Reheat gently and proceed.


Chicken Piccata

 

2          x          skinless and boneless chicken breasts, butterflied and then cut in half

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

All-purpose flour, for dredging

6          Tbs      unsalted butter

5          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

1/3       cup      fresh lemon juice

½         cup      chicken stock

¼         cup      brined capers, rinsed

1/3       cup      fresh parsley, chopped

 

Season chicken with salt and pepper. Dredge chicken in flour and shake off excess.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, melt 2 Tbs of butter with 3 Tbs olive oil. When butter and oil start to sizzle, add 2 pieces of chicken and cook for 3 minutes. When chicken is browned, flip and cook other side for 3 minutes. Remove and transfer to plate. Melt 2 more Tbs butter and add another 2 Tbs olive oil. When butter and oil start to sizzle, add the other 2 pieces of chicken and brown both sides in same manner. Remove pan from heat and add chicken to the plate.

 

Into the pan add the lemon juice, stock and capers. Return to stove and bring to boil, scraping up brown bits from the pan for extra flavor. Check for seasoning. Return all the chicken to the pan and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove chicken to platter. Add remaining 2 Tbs butter to sauce and whisk vigorously. Pour sauce over chicken and garnish with parsley.

 

 

 


Chicken Piccata with Mushroom and Artichoke Hearts

 

1          cup      all-purpose flour        

⅓         tsp       paprika             

1          ea         salt and pepper to taste     

1          lb         skinless, boneless chicken breast m; eat

¼         cup      vegetable oil          

4          oz        fresh mushrooms, sliced     

¼         cup      lemon juice           

¾         cup      chicken stock          

⅓         tsp       garlic powder          

1          can       artichoke hearts, drained/quartered

 

Rinse chicken, and pat dry; cut into medallions or thin pieces.  In a shallow bowl or plate, mix together flour, paprika, salt, and pepper.  Dredge/coat chicken pieces in seasoned flour.                

 

In a large skillet, heat oil and sauté chicken pieces in hot oil until light golden brown (about 45 seconds each side).  Remove chicken from skillet, and set aside.                          

 

To skillet add mushrooms, lemon juice, and stock.  Simmer all together until smooth, light sauce develops.  Stir in garlic.  Add chicken, and simmer until done, only a few minutes.  Stir in artichoke hearts just before removing from heat.     

 

                      


Chicken Saltimbocca

 

1 ¼      cups     chicken broth 

4          each     chicken breast halves

8          each     prosciutto; thinly sliced

12        each     fresh sage leaves

4          Tbs      extra virgin olive oil

1          tsp       lemon zest; finely grated fresh

1          tsp       lemon juice; fresh

1          each     black pepper

 

Boil broth until reduced to about ¾ cups.     

 

Remove tender from each chicken breast half (to help it lie flat) and reserve for another use.  Lightly pound chicken between dampened sheets of plastic wrap with smooth side of meat mallet or a rolling pin until ½ inch thick.

 

Cover smooth side of each breast with 2 slices of prosciutto, overlapping them.  Top with 3 sage leaves and secure each leaf with a wooden toothpick by weaving toothpick through leaf and meat.

 

Heat 1 ½ Tbs oil in a 10-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until hot by not smoking, then sauté 2 chicken breasts, sage-prosciutto sides down, until golden brown, 1 to 1 ½ minutes.  Turn chicken over, then reduce heat to moderate and cook until just cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes more.  Transfer chicken to a platter with tongs and keep warm, covered.  Cook remaining 2 breasts in 1 ½ Tbs oil in same manner.  Reserve fat in skillet.

 

Carefully remove toothpicks from chicken and transfer 1 sage leaf from each breast to skillet (keeping remaining sage leaves on chicken).  Keep chicken warm, loosely covered with foil.

 

Add zest, juice, and reduced broth to skillet and simmer, stirring and scraping up brown bits, until reduced by half, about 5 minutes.  Whisk in remaining Tbs oil and season with cracked black pepper.   Spoon sauce over chicken and serve.

 

 

 


Chicken Saltimbocca Marsala

 

Our own invention, taking the best from each of the Saltimbocca and the Marsala recipes, this combination of the two is a keeper.

 

4          each     chicken breast halves

1          each     flour

1          each     salt and pepper to taste

3          Tbs      butter

2          Tbs      olive oil

3          Tbs      butter

4          each     shallots, sliced

½         lb         mushroom; sliced

½         tsp       sage; crushed

½         tsp       thyme; crushed

1 ½      cups     Marsala wine

½         cup      heavy cream

1          tsp       lemon juice

1          each     salt and pepper to taste

4          pieces  prosciutto

4          pieces  provolone cheese

 

I prefer getting chicken breasts with skin and rib meat, and take the little bit of extra time to remove the rib bones from the chicken.  This leaves you with a nice breast and tender, with the skin still attached, which will give you a nice crunch and better flavor.

 

Pound the chicken flat, maybe half the normal thickness of the breast.  Dredge the breasts in the flour, salt and pepper mixture.

 

Heat the butter (first 3 T) and oil in a pan until shimmering, and brown the chicken several minutes on each side.  I have found that if I start on the skin side down, then flip it, then flip it again to finish it on the skin side down, it gives a crispier skin in the end.  Remove and set aside, keeping warm as you do the rest of the chicken and sauce.

 

Add the remaining butter in the pan and sauté the shallots and mushrooms to the doneness you prefer.  I like them fairly well done.  Half of the way through the cooking, add the spices (sage and thyme, though you can experiment with different spices such as basil and oregano, or rosemary (use rosemary alone or with the sage)).  Add the Marsala wine and bring to a boil, scraping any crispies still sticking to the bottom of the pan.

 

Boil down to about ½ way (about ¾ cups of liquid), then add the cream and lemon juice.  Return to a light boil.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

 

While finishing up the sauce, place the chicken, skin side up, on a cookie sheet (you may want to lightly spray the sheet with Pam).  Cover each piece with a piece of prosciutto and a piece of provolone.  Broil at the second level down from the top (so as not to burn the cheese and to allow enough time to re-heat the chicken) until the cheese is just starting to brown.  Plate each piece and spoon sauce over them.


Chicken with Mustard Cream Sauce

 

4          x          chicken breasts, skinless and boneless

2          Tbs      olive oil

1          Tbs      butter

2          x          green scallions, sliced

1          clove    garlic, minced

½         cup      white wine

½         cup      heavy cream

3          Tbs      Dijon mustard

Salt and pepper

 

Place chicken breast under plastic wrap and flatten using mallet, rolling pin, or a glass bottle. Season breasts with salt and pepper. In heated skillet add olive oil and butter. Add chicken and cook over a medium heat until golden brown on both sides. Remove chicken to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm. Add scallions and garlic to same skillet. Sauté quickly and add white wine. Boil rapidly and reduce to syrup. Add cream and mustard, stir. Return chicken breast to pan and simmer gently until just heated through.

 


Coffee Brined Chicken Breasts

 

Brine

¼         cup      kosher salt

¼         cup      packed brown sugar

3          cups     water

4          slices    lemons

1          Tbs      black peppercorn

1          Tbs      mustard seeds

1          Tbs      coriander seed

¾         cup      strong coffee

 

4          x          boneless skinless chicken breasts

2          Tbs      melted butter or olive oil

 

Combine the brine ingredients, except coffee in a saucepan, heat until sugar and salt dissolve pour into a large bowl, stir in coffee, refrigerate until cool.

Add chicken and use a small plate to keep it submerged 2-3 hours.

Heat grill to high.

Remove chicken from brine, blot with paper towels, and brush with oil or butter on both sides grill 4-8 minutes, moving halfway to create grill marks.

Turn over and grill 4-6 minutes more until done.

 


Dijon-Baked Chicken with Rice and Broccoli

 

10-12   x          boneless skinless chicken thighs (about 1 3/4 lbs)

1          Tbs      curry powder

3          Tbs      frozen chopped onions

½         tsp       crushed red pepper flakes

½         cup      honey

½         cup      Dijon mustard

2          Tbs      soy sauce

1          tsp       Asian-style hot chili sauce (can be chili-garlic sauce)

1 ½      cups     basmati or white rice

3          cups     water

5          cups     frozen broccoli florets

1/8       tsp       your favorite supermarket-style seasoning mix

 

 

The night before: Unravel thighs to flatten and scrunch together in a large shallow oven-safe pan. Combine the following in a small mixing bowl in this order: spices, honey, Dijon mustard, soy sauce, and hot chili sauce. Stir. Pour evenly over chicken. Flip the chicken around with a fork until each piece is well coated. End by making sure the rough side of the thigh is down. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

The next day: Preheat oven to 350 °F.

 

Combine rice and water in a larger oven-safe pot. Stir. Cover and place in preheated oven.

 

Turn chicken over with a fork. Place in preheated oven, beside rice. Set timer for 50 minutes. About halfway through the cooking time for chicken, I like to flip the chicken over again. When the timer rings for chicken, turn off heat but leave it in the oven.

 

Rinse broccoli in colander. Place in a microwave-safe pot or casserole dish with lid. Cover, then microwave at high for 5 minutes. When timer rings, add seasoning mix to broccoli.

 


Dirty Bird

 

1          can       (small) chipotle peppers

3          cloves  garlic, plus 2 garlic cloves, chopped

½         cup      chicken stock

1          pinch   dried oregano

1          pinch   ground cumin

1          pinch   salt

¼         cup      Mexican chocolate

2          Tbs      butter

¼         cup      onions, chopped

2          x          boneless chicken breasts

 

In a blender or food processor, add the chipotle peppers, 3 garlic cloves, chicken stock, oregano, cumin, salt, and Mexican chocolate. Blend well.

In a frying pan add butter, remaining chopped garlic, and chopped onions, sauté for 5 minutes. Add chicken breasts. Cook until almost done. Add sauce to pan. Reduce the heat and cook until sauce is thick.

 


Garlic Parmesan Chicken

 

2          cups     dry bread crumbs

½         cup      grated Parmesan cheese

1          can       french-fried onions; 3 oz

1          tsp       mustard powder

½         cup      butter

2          cloves  garlic, chopped

1          Tbs      Worcestershire sauce

4          x          bone-in chicken breasts

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.  Lightly grease a 9x13 inch baking dish.

 

In a medium, shallow dish or bowl, combine the bread crumbs, cheese, onions and mustard; set aside.  Melt butter in a small saucepan; add garlic and Worcestershire sauce, and sauté garlic until tender.  Remove from heat.

 

Dip chicken breasts in garlic butter mixture, then roll in bread crumb and cheese mixture, coating thoroughly.  Place coated chicken in the prepared baking dish.  Drizzle with any remaining garlic butter mixture.

 

Bake in the preheated oven for 20 to 30 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink and juices run clear.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Grilled Chicken Breasts Stuffed with Ham and Saga Blue

 

1          whole  boneless chicken breast with skin (about 1 pound), halved

2          sticks   Saga Blue (each 2 by 1/2 by 1/2-inch)

2          thin      slices of cooked ham (each 4 by 4 inches)

1          Tbs      Worcestershire sauce

1          Tbs      fresh lemon juice

2          Tbs      unsalted butter, cut into pieces

 

Insert a sharp knife into the thicker end of each chicken breast half and cut a lengthwise pocket carefully, making it as wide as possible without puncturing the sides. Wrap each stick of Saga Blue in a ham slice, enclosing it, insert the packages in the chicken pockets, and seal each opening well with a wooden pick.

In a small saucepan bring the Worcestershire sauce and the lemon juice just to a simmer, remove the pan from the heat, and swirl in the butter. Grill the chicken, seasoned with salt and pepper, on an oiled rack set about 6 inches over glowing coals, basting it frequently with the sauce, for 12 minutes on each side. (Do not baste the chicken during the last 2 minutes of grilling, and discard any unused sauce.

Serve with baby carrots and wild rice timbale

 


Oven Fried Chicken

 

This is about as simple as you can get, and definitely falls into the “comfort food” section.  Takes 5 minutes to get ready, an hour to bake.

 

6          each     chicken breasts (I prefer chicken tenders, about 2 lbs)

1          stick     butter

1          cup      flour

salt and pepper to taste

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.  In the same pan you plan to bake the chicken, place the stick of butter, place in oven, and melt butter as you fix the chicken.

 

Trim the chicken (or in the case of tenders, remove the large vein).  If using breasts, I usually like to slice each one lengthwise into about 3 pieces, making them long and thin like the tenders.  This allows better baking through the piece, more flavor on each one, and easier finger food type of eating.  Place the flour, salt and pepper into a plastic bag.  Drop the chicken into the bag and shake to cover the chicken.

 

Remove the pan from the oven, pour the butter from the pan to a temporary bowl.  Line the pan with the chicken, preferably one layer.  Pour the butter back over the chicken, trying to cover as much as possible.

 

Bake covered for 30 minutes, turn the chicken over and bake uncovered for another 30 minutes.

 

Let rest for 5 minutes before serving.  Great with simple veggies like green beans and carrots or mashed potatoes.

 


Oven-Roasted Chicken with Garlic Rosemary Smear

 

10        heads   roasted garlic

2          Tbs      chopped rosemary

Salt and white pepper

6          Tbs      olive oil, in all

1          whole chicken, about 3 lbs

8          whole new potatoes, quartered

1          x          onion quartered

Essence, recipe in the Sauces and Rubs section

1          cup      dark chicken stock

2          Tbs      chopped chives

2          Tbs      brunoise red peppers

 

Preheat the oven to 400 °F. Place the roasted garlic and rosemary in a food processor with a metal blade. Puree until smooth. Add 4 Tbs olive and puree into a paste. Season with salt and pepper. Season the entire chicken, potatoes, and onions with salt and pepper. Stuff the potatoes and onions in the cavity of the chicken. Tie the chicken with butchers twine, for overall cooking and closing the cavity. Rub the entire chicken with the garlic smear, except for 1 Tbs, and place in a shallow roasting pan. Roast the chicken for about 45 to 50 minutes or until the juices run clear. Remove the chicken from the pan and place the pan on the stove. Deglaze the pan with the chicken stock and remaining garlic smear. Season with salt and pepper. Remove the butcher’s twine. Place the potatoes and onions in the center of the platter. Carve the chicken into 8 pieces. Lay the chicken around the potatoes. Spoon the sauce over the chicken and potatoes. Garnish with chives and peppers.

 

 

 


Pan-fried Chicken Breasts With Oregano Garlic Butter

 

1          clove    garlic

1/4       tsp       salt

5          Tbs      unsalted butter, softened

1          Tbs      chopped fresh oregano

1/4       tsp       dried hot red pepper flakes

4          each     chicken breast halves with skin and bones (2 to 2 1/4 lb)

1          Tbs      olive oil

 

Mince garlic and mash to a paste with salt using a large heavy knife.

 

Mash together butter, oregano, red pepper flakes, and garlic paste with a fork until well blended.

 

Pat chicken dry. Cut a 2-inch-long pocket horizontally in side of each chicken breast half and fill each pocket with 2 tsp oregano garlic butter. Season chicken with salt and pepper.

 

Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then cook chicken, skin sides down, uncovered, until well browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Turn chicken over and cover skillet, then cook until chicken is just cooked through, about 10 minutes more. Spread remaining oregano garlic butter over skin of chicken.

 

Cooking chicken breasts on the bone keeps them exceptionally juicy.


Pastilla - Moroccan Pigeon Pie

 

Chad’s specialty, I wanted to include it here to keep all of the best family recipes together.

 

6          cloves  garlic, crushed

2          med     onions, minced

¾         cups     parsley, minced

3          x          lemons

4 ½      lb         roasting chicken

2 ½      cups     blanched almonds

1 ½      sticks   butter

¾         sticks   butter

14        x          eggs, beaten

36        x          phyllo leaves

2          Tbs      salt

1 ¼      tsp       ground coriander

1 ¼      tsp       pepper

1          tsp       ground ginger

½         tsp       ground cinnamon

6          Tbs      confectioner’s sugar

1 ¼      tsp       ground cinnamon

¼         tsp       turmeric

¼         tsp       saffron, crushed

1          pinch   allspice

2          12”      ovenproof skillets

1          large    kettle with lid

 

Wash chicken & pat dry.  Mince crushed garlic cloves with 2 T salt to form a paste.  Rub chicken inside and out with paste.  Let stand 5 minutes.  Remove paste with a damp cloth.

 

Put chicken in kettle with giblets, minced parsley, minced onions, 1 stick + 1 T. butter cut into bits, all of the spices and 3 ½ cups of water.  Bring to a boil and then simmer, covered, for 1 hour.

 

In a large skillet, sauté blanched almonds in ¼ cup butter until golden.  Drain on paper towels a d let cool.  Then chop coarsely  Mix with 6 T confectioners sugar and 1 ¼ t cinnamon.  Reserve nut mixture.

 

Transfer chicken and giblets with slotted spoon to a bowl and let cool.  After cool, remove meat from the bone and cut/tear the meat into bite-sized pieces.  Discard bones and skin.

 

Bring liquid in kettle to boil and reduce to 2 ½ - 3 cups.  Turn head down to moderate, add ½ cup lemon juice, and bring to simmer.  Whisk 14 beaten eggs into liquid and cook, stirring constantly, for 10 minutes, until the mixture has a curd-like consistency.  Transfer to bowl and add salt to taste. 

 

Brush skillets with butter.  For each skillet, place 8 leaves, each brushed with butter, in the skillet, radiating out from the center.  Fold 2 leaves and place in bottom of skillet.  Sprinkle ½ of almond mixture over bottom of each skillet.  Place ¼ of egg mixture in bottom of each skillet and top with ½ of chicken.  Finish each skillet with ¼ of egg mixture.  Fold overhanging leaves over the top of the filling.  Arrange remaining 8 leaves, buttered, over the top.  Very carefully tuck the leaves around the sides and underneath.

 

Bake in 400° oven for 20-30 minutes.  Invert onto a buttered baking sheet and cook until golden brown, about 10 minutes.  Place on heated platter.  Dust with confectioner’s sugar.  Sprinkle cinnamon in latticework pattern on top.

 

Yield: 12-16 servings


Perfect Roast Chicken

 

1          x          5 to 6 pound roasting chicken

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1          large    bunch fresh thyme, plus 20 sprigs

1          x          lemon, halved

1          head    garlic, cut in half crosswise

2          Tbs      (1/4 stick) butter, melted

1          large    yellow onion, thickly sliced

4          x          carrots cut into 2-inch chunks

2          med     potatoes cut into chunks

1          bulb     fennel, tops removed, and cut into wedges

Olive oil

 

Preheat the oven to 425 °F.

 

Remove the chicken giblets. Rinse the chicken inside and out. Remove any excess fat and leftover pin feathers and pat the outside dry. Liberally salt and pepper the inside of the chicken. Stuff the cavity with the bunch of thyme, both halves of lemon, and all the garlic. Brush the outside of the chicken with the butter and sprinkle again with salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with kitchen string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken. Place the onions, carrots, potatoes and fennel in a roasting pan. Toss with salt, pepper, 20 sprigs of thyme, and olive oil. Spread around the bottom of the roasting pan and place the chicken on top.

 

Roast the chicken for 1 1/2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and thigh. Remove the chicken and vegetables to a platter and cover with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes. Slice the chicken onto a platter and serve it with the vegetables.

 

 


Poulet de Normandie

 

A nice way to get rid of left over chicken or turkey, this is a simple but tasty casserole that was good enough to be served at our reception dinner long ago, and has been with us ever since.

 

1          pkg      8 oz stuffing mix        

1          stick     butter (½ cup)         

1          cup      water

 

3          cups     chicken, cooked and chopped

¼         cup      green onion; chopped (regular onion works fine)

½         cup      celery; chopped

½         cup      mayonnaise            

¾         tsp       salt

 

2          each     eggs

1 ½      cups     milk

 

1          can       cream of mushroom soup

1          cup      shredded cheese; enough to cover

 

Mix first 3 ingredients together and put half of it into a 13" flat pan.

                                     

Mix together the chicken, onions, celery, mayo and salt, and place on top of stuffing in the pan.

                                     

Beat eggs and combine with milk.  Pour over the casserole.

                                     

Place left over half of stuffing mixture on top of the casserole.  Cover and refrigerate over night.

                                     

Take out 1 hour before baking and thinly spread mushroom soup over the top.

                                     

Bake at 325 for 45 minutes covered.  Remove and sprinkle with cheese.  Return to oven uncovered and bake 10-15 minutes longer.          

 

 

 


Rolled Stuffed Chicken with Hot Pepper Sauce

 

For the rolled stuffed chicken:

½         lb         hot Italian sausage, casings discarded

1          large    egg, beaten lightly

2          lbs        spinach, washed well and coarse stems discarded

2          Tbs      olive oil

1          clove    garlic, minced

1          whole  chicken (about 1 pound) completely boned but left intact

1          tsp       fresh lemon juice

2          Tbs      vegetable oil

 

For the Sauce:

¼         cup      chopped onion

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

1          large    red bell pepper, chopped fine

1          large    green bell pepper, chopped fine

½         cup      chicken stock

½         cup      dry white wine

1          tsp       seeded & minced pickled jalapeno pepper, or to taste (wear rubber gloves)

1          tsp       fresh lemon juice, or to taste

 

Make the rolled stuffed chicken: In a skillet cook the sausage over moderate heat, stirring and breaking up the lumps, until it is no longer pink and let it cool. Transfer the sausage with a slotted spoon to a food processor, add the egg, and pulse the mixture for 30 seconds, or until the sausage is chopped fine but not pureed. In a large saucepan cook the spinach in water clinging to the leaves, covered, over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, for 3 to 5 minutes, or until it is wilted. Drain the spinach in a colander, refresh it under cold water, and squeeze dry. Chop the spinach coarsely and sprinkle it with salt and pepper. In a skillet heat the olive oil over moderate heat until it is hot but not smoking and in it cook the garlic, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the spinach, cook the mixture stirring 2 minutes, and let it cool.

 

Flatten the chicken breast between sheets of dampened wax paper until it is about 1/4-inch thick, form it into a rectangular shape skinned side down, and sprinkle it with lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Spread the spinach evenly on top of the chicken, leaving a 1/2-inch border all around, spread the sausage mixture evenly on top of it, and beginning with the long side roll the chicken jelly roll fashion to enclose the stuffing, forming a log. Stretch the reserved chicken skin to form a rectangle 2 inches wider than the log and roll the skin around the chicken, covering as much of it as possible. Tie the rolled chicken at 1-inch intervals with the kitchen string, pat it dry, and season it with salt and pepper. In an oven proof skillet heat the vegetable oil over moderately high heat until it is hot but not smoking and in it brown the chicken. Bake the rolled chicken, seam side down, in a pre-heated 350 °F oven for 30 minutes and let it stand, covered for 10 minutes.

 

Make the sauce while the chicken is baking: In a skillet cook the onion in the butter over moderately low heat, stirring until it is softened, add the bell peppers, and cook the mixture, covered stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes. Add the stock and the wine and bring the liquid to a boil, and simmer the mixture covered for 10 minutes. Add the jalapeno pepper, the lemon juice, and the salt and pepper to taste and puree the mixture in a blender. The sauce may be made 1 day in advance and kept covered and chilled.

 

Discard the strings from the rolled chicken and cut the chicken crosswise into 12 or 16 slices. Pour about 1/3 cup of the sauce, heated, on each of 4 heated plates and arrange 3 or 4 chicken slices on each plate.

 

 

 


Saltimbocca di Pollo

 

1          cup      all purpose flour

Salt and pepper

4          each     chicken breasts

4          large    slices prosciutto

4          large    sage leaves, plus 20 smaller leaves

2          cups     extra-virgin olive oil, plus

4          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

4          each     shallots, thinly sliced

½         lb         oyster mushrooms, sliced into 1/4-inch pieces

1          cup      Marsala wine

½         cup      chicken stock

2          Tbs      butter

1          bunch  Italian parsley, chopped to yield 1/4 cup

 

Season the flour with salt and pepper.

With a meat mallet, pound the chicken breasts to 1/4-inch thickness. Season each breast with salt and pepper and lay 1 sage leaf on each breast. Lay 1 slice prosciutto over each piece and fold in half like a book. Secure the two sides with a toothpick and dredge each breast in the seasoned flour.

 

In a heavy-bottomed pot with high sides, heat the 2 cups olive oil to 375 °F. Make sure that you have a slotted spoon or spider close by. Working in a few batches, fry the leaves in the oil, removing with the slotted spoon after 30 seconds. Season with salt, set on a plate lined with paper towels to drain, and set aside.

 

In a 12 to 14-inch Sauté pan, heat the remaining olive oil until smoking. Add the chicken and Sauté until golden brown on both sides. Add the shallots and mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms have sweated, about 5 to 6 minutes. Add the Marsala and chicken stock and cook over high heat until reduce by half. Swirl the butter into the pan, add the parsley and serve on 4 warmed dinner plates, topped with the fried sage leaves.

 

 

 


Shiitake-Crusted Chicken with Creamed Mushrooms

 

For coating:

2          tsp       olive oil

6          oz        fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded, caps chopped coarse (½ cup)

1/3       cup      fine dry bread crumbs

1          tsp       dried thyme

¼         tsp       dried rosemary

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/3       cup      all-purpose flour

1          large    egg, beaten lightly

2          whole  skinless boneless chicken breasts (about 1 ½ lbs), halved

2          Tbs      olive oil

 

For creamed mushrooms:

1          large    shallot, minced (about ¼ cup)

1          Tbs      unsalted butter

½         lb         fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded and caps chopped coarse

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

½         cup      dry white wine

1          Tbs      white wine vinegar

Heaping 1/4 tsp dried rosemary, crumbled

1          cup      heavy cream

 

 

Prepare coating: Preheat oven to 450 °F.

In a shallow baking pan drizzle oil over shiitakes and toss to coat. Roast mushrooms, stirring once or twice, 12 to 15 minutes, or until golden. Keep oven at 450 °F.

 

Mince roasted shiitake and in a shallow bowl stir together with bread crumbs, thyme, and rosemary and season with salt and pepper. Season flour with salt and pepper. Have ready in separate shallow bowls seasoned flour and egg.

 

Working with 1 chicken breast at a time, dredge in flour, shaking off excess, and dip in egg, letting excess drip off. Coat chicken with mushroom mixture, gently knocking off excess, and transfer to a plate. Chicken may be prepared up to this point 2 hours ahead and chilled, uncovered, on a rack.

 

In a 12-inch non-stick skillet heat oil over moderately high heat oil over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking and sauté chicken until golden, about 1 minute on each side. Transfer chicken with tongs to baking pan and roast in middle of oven 10 minutes, or until just cooked through.

 

Make creamed mushrooms while chicken is roasting: Wipe out skillet and cook shallot in butter over moderately low heat, stirring, until softened. Add shiitake, salt and pepper, to taste, and sauté over moderately high heat, stirring, until mushrooms are softened and browned lightly. Stir in wine, vinegar, and rosemary and boil until all liquid is evaporated. Add cream and simmer, stirring, until thickened slightly, about 1 minute. Season mixture with salt and pepper.

 

Serve chicken with creamed mushrooms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Artichoke Hearts and Goat Cheese

 

The goat cheese is delightfully tart.

 

2          tsp       olive oil, divided

¾         cup      frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and chopped

¼         cup      minced shallots (about 3)

¼         cup      (1 oz) crumbled goat or feta cheese

1          tsp       dried herbes de Provence or thyme, divided

¼         tsp       salt, divided

¼         tsp       black pepper, divided

4          4-oz     skinned, boned chicken breast halves

1          cup      fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

2          Tbs      fresh lemon juice

2          tsp       cornstarch

Chopped fresh parsley (optional)

Lemon rind strips (optional)

 

Heat 1 tsp oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add artichokes and shallots; sauté 4 minutes. Remove from pan; cool. Stir in cheese, 1/2 tsp herbes de Provence, 1/8 tsp salt, and 1/8 tsp pepper.

 

Cut a horizontal slit through thickest portion of each breast half to form a pocket. Stuff 2 Tbs artichoke mixture into each pocket.

 

Heat 1 tsp oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add chicken, and sprinkle with 1/8 tsp salt and 1/8 tsp pepper; sauté 6 minutes on each side or until done. Remove from pan; keep warm. Add 1/2 tsp herbes de Provence and broth to pan; bring to a boil. Combine juice and cornstarch; add to broth mixture, stirring with a whisk. Cook 1 minute or until thick. Return chicken to pan; cover and cook 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Garnish with parsley and lemon strips, if desired.

 

4 servings (serving size: 1 chicken breast half and 2 Tbs sauce)

 

 

 


Tequila Chicken Quesadillas

 

Lots you can do here, but this is sort of the bare bones.  Don’t put in the chicken and tequila for a vegetarian version (very good).  You can use packages of pre-grilled chicken if you want to save time

 

3          Tbs      canola oil
1          lb         boneless skinless chicken breast, julienned
½         tsp       kosher salt
¼         tsp       freshly ground black pepper
2          dashes cayenne pepper
1 ½      Tbs      cumin
1          clove    garlic, minced
1          small    tomato, diced

1          x          red bell pepper, diced
1          x          green bell pepper, diced
1          small    red onion, thinly diced
2          oz        tequila
1          pkg      8” tortillas

8-16     oz        Colby Jack cheese, Monterey Jack, or Cheddar, shredded
2          Tbs      unsalted butter
2          Tbs      finely chopped cilantro leaves
2          Tbs      sliced scallions

In a large sauté pan or skillet, heat oil over high heat. Season the chicken with salt, pepper, cayenne, cumin, and garlic, and add to the hot oil. Next add the peppers and onions, and remove pan from the heat and add tequila. Cook for about 5 minutes, or until chicken is cooked thoroughly.  Keep warm.  Transfer out of the pan to a bowl, clean the pan and use for the next step.

Lastly, melt a half a Tbs of butter until hot in a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 quesadilla and cook for about 30 seconds until brown, then flip over.  Cover the quesadilla with cheese (up to about a ¼ or ½ inch from the edge), and spoon a portion of the chicken & vegetable mix onto HALF of the quesadilla.  Let it continue to warm for another 30 seconds or more until the cheese is melted. Flip the cheese only half over on top of the chicken mix half, pat down, and slide off onto a waiting platter.  Do the same for the rest of the mix.  Cut quesadillas into 2-4 pieces each and serve. Garnish with cilantro and scallions, and serve with salsa picante, guacamole, and sour cream, if desired.

 

 

 

 

 


Vermont Chicken Pie

 

1          qt         chicken stock, available on soup aisle

1 ½      lbs        chicken tenders, 2 packages

1          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan

2          Tbs      butter, cut into pieces

1          med     onion, chopped

2          x          carrots, peeled and diced

2          ribs      celery, diced

6          x          white mushrooms, quartered

1          x          bay leaf, fresh or dried

1          tsp       dried thyme, 1/3 palm full

Salt and pepper

2          Tbs      all-purpose flour

Handful flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped

1          cup      frozen peas

1          pkg      refrigerated biscuits in tube, found on dairy aisle

 

Preheat oven to 400 °F.

Reserve 2 cups of stock for vegetables. Cut tenders into 1/3's. Bring remaining stock to a boil in skillet, add chicken, cover and reduce heat to simmer. Poach chicken 6 to 8 minutes.

 

While chicken cooks, in a second large skillet over medium to medium high heat, add oil and butter. To melted butter, add onion, carrots, celery, and mushrooms, adding veggies to the pan as you chop them. Add bay leaf and season veggies with thyme, salt and pepper. Sauté 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Add flour and cook another minute. Whisk in reserved 2 cups of stock forming a sauce around veggies. Stir in cooked chicken pieces, parsley and peas. Transfer the mixture to a large casserole, oval or rectangular. Open the biscuits and arrange them, edges touching, in a layer across the top of the casserole. Bake 8 to 10 minutes until biscuits are golden brown, then serve.

 

 

 

 

 


Main Dishes - Seafood

 

                                                              

 

Andouille Crusted Scallops With Creole Mustard Sauce

 

¾         cup      rendered, chopped andouille sausage

1/2       cup      bread crumbs                      

1          Tbs      olive oil                         

2          tsp       Creole seasoning                  

10        large    scallops                          

¼         cup      Creole mustard                     

1          cup      heavy cream                       

¼         tsp       black pepper                      

1          Tbs      chopped parsley                   

 

In a skillet, cook sausage over medium-high heat until lightly browned and fat has rendered. Let cool. In a small bowl combine sausage with bread crumbs, olive oil, and 1 tsp of Creole seasoning and mix well.

 

Preheat oven to 400 °F. Butter an ovenproof baking dish just large enough to hold scallops. Sprinkle both sides of scallops with remaining Creole seasoning, and transfer scallops to baking dish. Top scallops with sausage mixture. Bake 10 to 15 minutes, until topping is crusty and scallops are just cooked through.

 

Meanwhile, make mustard sauce: In a small saucepan heat cream with mustard, whisking frequently; do not let mixture boil. Season with pepper and stir in half of chopped parsley. To serve, divide scallops between 2 plates and spoon mustard sauce over. Sprinkle with remaining parsley.

 


Bacon-Wrapped Trout with Rosemary

 

4          x          10 to 12-oz whole trout, cleaned

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

8          x          4 to 5-inch fresh rosemary sprigs

12        x          bacon slices

12        x          thin lemon slices

 

Preheat broiler.

Put the trout in a shallow baking pan (1-inch deep) or a large heavy ovenproof skillet, then pat dry and season the cavities with salt and pepper. Put 2 sprigs of rosemary inside each cavity and season outside of trout with salt and pepper; then wrap 3 bacon slices around each.

 

Broil the trout 5 to 7 inches from heat until skin and bacon are crisp, about 5 minutes. Turn over gently with a spatula and broil 2 minutes more. Add lemon slices to pan in 1 layer alongside each trout and continue to broil until the trout are just cooked through and the rest of the bacon is crisp, 2 1/2 to 3 minutes more.

 

 

 

 

 


Broiled Salmon with Miso Glaze

 

Versatile miso (fermented soybean paste) keeps for months in the refrigerator and adds

instant flavor to soups, sauces, dips, marinades, and salad dressings. In general, the

lighter the miso, the milder and sweeter its flavor. Light miso is the key to the wonderful flavor of this salmon.

 

1 ½      tsp       sesame seeds

1          Tbs      shiro miso (sweet white miso) paste (see Tip)

1          Tbs      mirin (Japanese rice wine)

2          tsp       rice vinegar

½         tsp       sugar

1 ½      tsp       reduced-sodium soy sauce or tamari

1 ½      tsp       minced fresh ginger

2-6       drops   hot pepper sauce

½         lb         center-cut salmon fillet, cut into 2 portions

1          Tbs      thinly sliced scallions

1          Tbs      chopped fresh cilantro or parsley

 

2          Tbs      dark sesame oil

1          tsp       bottled minced garlic

10        oz        fresh spinach (1 bag)

2          tsp       low-sodium soy sauce

 

1. Position oven rack in upper third of oven; preheat broiler. Line a small baking pan with foil. Coat foil with cooking spray.

2. Toast sesame seeds in a small dry skillet over low heat, stirring constantly, until

fragrant, 3 to 5 minutes. Set aside in a small bowl.

3. Whisk miso, mirin, rice vinegar, sugar, soy sauce (or tamari), ginger, and hot pepper sauce in a small bowl

until smooth.

4. Place salmon fillets, skin-side down, in prepared pan. Brush generously with miso

mixture. Broil salmon, 3 to 4 inches from the heat source, until opaque in the center, 6 to

8 minutes.

While salmon is broiling, heat sesame oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add garlic and spinach to skillet, cook 30 seconds or until spinach just begins to wilt, tossing mixture constantly.  Stir in 2 teaspoons soy sauce.  Transfer to serving dish.

5. Transfer salmon and place on bed of spinach on serving dish and garnish with sesame seeds, scallions, and cilantro (or parsley).

 

 

 

 

 


Butterflied Trout in Lemon Caper Butter

 

4          x          butterflied whole trout
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Flour, for dredging
Olive oil, for sautéing
2          Tbs      butter, plus 1 tablespoon
2          x          lemons, supremed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1          Tbs      capers
Toasted Croutons, recipe follows
¼         cup      dry white wine
1          tsp       lemon juice
¼         cup      chopped parsley leaves

 

Lay out the trout so the skin side is down. Open the flesh like a book. With a sharp knife, carefully cut out the backbone, making sure to keep the fillets attached at the head and the tail. Season both sides of the trout with salt and pepper.

Lightly dredge both sides of the trout with flour, shaking off any excess. Heat a large sauté pan over high heat. When the pan is hot, add enough olive oil to lightly coat the bottom of the pan. Heat the oil until it shimmers when swirled. Carefully add the trout, flesh-side down, starting at the tail and laying away from you towards the head. You may need to cook the trout in batches. Cook until golden brown on both sides, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Remove to a platter and keep warm.

Once the trout is all cooked, return the pan to medium-high heat and remove all but 1 tablespoon of the oil. Add 2 tablespoons of the butter and cook just until it begins to brown and smell nutty, about 3 minutes. Add the capers, lemons, croutons, white wine, and lemon juice and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the remaining tablespoon of butter and remove from the heat. Stir in the parsley and pour over the trout.

Toasted Croutons:
3          Tbs      olive oil
4          slices    (1/2-inch thick) white bread, crusts removed and cut into 1/4-inch cubes

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

 

Heat a large sauté pan over high heat. Add the olive oil and heat. When the oil is hot, add the bread cubes and cook, stirring, until toasted and golden brown, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat and cool.


Crispy Sea Bass with Confit of Yukon Gold Potatoes, Pancetta and Fresh Sweet Peas

 

1 ½      lbs       Yukon Gold potatoes, halved

Salt

Freshly ground pepper

12        small    garlic cloves

2          sprigs   fresh rosemary

4          cups     vegetable oil

½         lb         pancetta, thinly sliced

1          cup      thinly sliced Vidalia onions, or other sweet yellow onions

2          cups     fresh sweet green peas

4          6-8 oz striped bass fillets

1          cup      flour

1          Tbs      finely chopped fresh parsley leaves

 

Preheat the oven to 250 °F. Season the potatoes with salt and pepper. Place the potatoes in a small, shallow baking pan. Add the garlic, rosemary and oil. Season with salt and pepper. Cover with foil and bake until tender, about 1 hour. Remove from the oven and cool the potatoes completely in the oil. Remove the potatoes and garlic from the oil. Reserve 1/4 cup plus 2 Tbs of the oil. In a large Sauté pan, over medium heat, add 2 Tbs of the potato oil. When the oil is hot, add the pancetta. Sauté for 2 minutes. Add the onions. Season with salt and pepper. Continue to Sauté for 2 minutes. Add the peas, confit potatoes and confit garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Continue to Sauté for 3 to 4 minutes or until hot. Set aside, keeping warm. Season the fish with salt and pepper. Lightly dredge the fillets in the flour. In a large Sauté pan, over medium heat, add 1/4 cup of the reserved oil. Pan-fry the fish for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until the fish is golden and crispy. Remove and

drain on paper towels. To serve: Spoon the potato mixture in the center of each plate. Lay the fish directly on top of the potatoes. Garnish with parsley.

 

 

 


Fish and Chips

 

For the chips:

3 ¾      pints    vegetable oil

2          lbs        floury potatoes, like russets, peeled and cut into large chips

 

For the batter:

1          cup      plain flour

1          cup      beer

2          x          egg whites, whipped to soft peaks

Salt

 

4          9 oz     fillets haddock or cod, skin on, and pin boned

 

 

Pour all the vegetable oil into a deep pan or deep fat fryer, and heat to 300 °F (160 °F C.) Blanch the cut potatoes in the oil until soft, but not colored, about 4 minutes. Remove and drain.

 

Mix together the flour and the beer, then fold in the egg whites. Turn up the heat of the oil to 350 °F (180 °F C). Dip the fish in the batter and fry for a few minutes with the chips until golden brown.

 

Drain on kitchen paper and serve with chips or fries.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Fish Fillets in Parchment with Asparagus and Orange

 

In this delicately flavored main course, the asparagus steams along with the fish in individual paper packets.

4          x          15x15-inch squares parchment paper
4          x          5-to 6-oz fish fillets (such as halibut or cod; each about 1 inch thick)
12        x          fresh tarragon leaves
2          Tbs      (1/4 stick) butter, cut into 4 pieces
1          lb         slender asparagus spears, trimmed, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
4          Tbs      orange juice

 

Preheat oven to 400 °F. Place parchment squares on work surface. Generously butter half of each parchment square; top buttered half of each with 1 fish fillet. Sprinkle fish with salt and pepper; top each fillet with 3 tarragon leaves, then 1 piece of butter. Arrange asparagus around each fish fillet; pour 1 Tbs orange juice over each. Fold parchment over fish and asparagus, folding and crimping edges tightly to seal and enclose filling completely. Place on 2 rimmed baking sheets, spacing apart. do ahead Can be made 4 hours ahead. Chill.

Bake fish packets 17 minutes. Slide packets onto plates and serve.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Grilled Lemon Prawns with Béarnaise Sauce

 

1          cup      olive oil

1          Tbs      dried oregano, crumbled

1          Tbs      dried mint, crumbled

2          tsp       freshly grated lemon zest

2          tsp       coarse salt

2          tsp       freshly ground black pepper

24        x          prawns or jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined

3          Tbs      fresh lemon juice

Lemon wedges, for garnish

Béarnaise Sauce, recipe follows

 

In a large bowl stir together the oil, herbs, zest, salt, and pepper. Add the prawns, and toss them to coat them well.

 

Let the prawns marinate, covered and chilled, for 1 hour. Stir in the lemon juice, let the mixture stand at room temperature for 30 minutes, and drain the prawns in a sieve.

 

Grill the herb-coated prawns on a rack set about 4 inches over glowing coals for 3 minutes on each side, or until they are cooked through. (Alternatively, the prawns may be broiled on the rack of a broiler pan under a preheated broiler about 4 inches from the heat for 4 minutes on each side.) Divide the prawns among 8 plates and serve with lemon wedges and the béarnaise sauce.

 

Béarnaise Sauce:

½         cup      red wine vinegar

2          tsp       dried tarragon

1          x          shallot, minced

¼         cup      water

4          large    egg yolks

8          Tbs      unsalted butter (1 stick), chilled and cut into small pieces

Kosher salt

Lemon juice

 

Combine the vinegar, tarragon, and shallot in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook until almost evaporated. Remove from the heat and add the water.

Transfer the tarragon mixture to a small metal bowl and whisk together with the egg yolks. Place the bowl over a saucepan of boiling water (the water should not touch the bottom of the bowl) and whisk constantly until the mixture forms thick ribbons.

 

While whisking constantly, add the butter, little by little, waiting for each addition to be incorporated before adding any more, until a smooth sauce is formed. (You may need to remove the bowl from the water, from time to time, if the sauce gets too hot.)

 

Whisk in salt and lemon juice, to taste. (Add water to adjust consistency, if desired.)


Grilled New Orleans-Style Shrimp

 

1 ½      lb         large shrimp (21 to 25 per lb)

2          Tbs      olive oil

3          med     garlic cloves, minced

¾         tsp       salt

¾         stick     unsalted butter

2          tsp       chili powder

2          tsp       black pepper

4          tsp       Worcestershire sauce

1          Tbs      fresh lemon juice

 

Special equipment: 7 (12-inch) wooden skewers

Accompaniments: a baguette and lemon wedges

 

Snip shells of shrimp with scissors down middle of back, leaving tail and first segment of shell intact. Make an incision along length of back where shells are cut and devein, leaving shells in place. (Shells will prevent shrimp from becoming tough on outside when grilled.) Toss shrimp with oil, garlic, and 1/2 tsp salt and marinate at cool room temperature 15 minutes.

 

While shrimp marinate, prepare grill for cooking. If using a charcoal grill, open vents on bottom of grill, then light charcoal. Charcoal fire is medium-hot when you can hold your hand 5 inches above rack for 3 to 4 seconds. If using a gas grill, preheat burners on high, covered, 10 minutes, then reduce heat to moderately high.

 

Heat butter, chili powder, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, and remaining 1/4 tsp salt in a small heavy saucepan over moderately low heat, stirring, until butter is melted, then remove from heat and stir in lemon juice.

 

Thread 4 or 5 shrimp onto each skewer and grill, covered only if using a gas grill, turning over once, until just cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes total. Push shrimp off skewers into a bowl, then pour butter mixture over them and toss to combine well.

 

Serve these spicy grilled shrimp with bread for sopping up all the sauce.


Honey and Soy Glazed Salmon

 

¼         cup      honey

¼         cup      soy sauce

3          Tbs      fresh lime juice

2          Tbs      water

1          Tbs      plus 1 tsp Dijon mustard

1-2       Tbs      vegetable oil

4          6-oz     pieces salmon fillet, skin removed

Black sesame seeds, for garnish

 

In a small bowl, whisk together honey, soy sauce, lime juice, water, and mustard. In a small non-stick skillet, heat oil over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking and cook salmon 2 to 3 minutes on each side, or until golden and just cooked through. Transfer salmon to 4 plates. Add honey mixture to skillet and simmer, stirring occasionally, until it reaches a glaze-like consistency. Pour the glaze over salmon and sprinkle with black sesame seeds.

 

Yield: 4 servings

 


Macadamia Nut Crusted Mahi-mahi

 

5          oz        (about 1 ¼ cups) coarsely ground, roasted macadamia nuts
½         cup      panko (Japanese-style bread crumbs)
2          Tbs      all-purpose flour
¼         cup      butter, melted
Vegetable oil, for brushing foil
4          x          6 to 8-oz mahi-mahi fillets
Kosher salt and pepper
2          Tbs      coconut milk

 

Preheat oven to 425 °F. In a medium bowl, stir together the nuts, panko, flour, and butter. Set aside.

 

Place a piece of aluminum foil on a baking sheet and brush it liberally with vegetable oil. Place the mahi-mahi on the foil and sprinkle each fillet with salt and pepper on both sides. Bake for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and brush each fillet with the coconut milk. Divide the nut mixture among the tops of the 4 fillets, patting the mixture to spread and adhere to the fillets. Return to the oven and bake for 5 to 10 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown.   Broil for 2 or 3 minutes if needed to give it a nice golden brown crusted top.

 

Remove from the oven and allow to stand 10 minutes before serving.

 


Mediterranean Swordfish Wrapped in Prosciutto

 

Olive oil

4          lbs        swordfish, center eye loin

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/2       lb         prosciutto slices

8          each     fresh thyme sprigs

2          each     oranges

1/4       cup      golden raisins

2          each     fennel bulbs

1/2       cup      whole Kalamata black olives, pitted

6          each     anchovy fillets, chopped

2          Tbs      red wine vinegar

1/4       cup      olive oil

10        each     fresh basil leaves, cut into chiffonade

1          Tbs      fennel seed

1/4       lb         arugula

6          each     cherry tomatoes, halved

 

Preheat oven to 375 °F.

 

Lightly oil the swordfish all over and season generously with salt and pepper. Lay 15 pieces of prosciutto out flat on waxed paper, overlapping a bit, and place the swordfish loin on top. Roll the prosciutto around the circumference of the fish, to wrap it. Remove the waxed paper. Secure the swordfish ?roast? with butcher’s twine. Thread the thyme sprigs under the pieces of string. Coat a roasting pan with olive oil and set on 2 burners over high heat until almost smoking. Sear the swordfish on all sides until the prosciutto begins to crisp up, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer to the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the fish is opaque and feels springy-firm when poked.

 

Using a paring knife, peel the oranges, removing all the white pith. Place a mixing bowl under the orange to catch the juice and cut between the membranes to release the segments; add to the bowl. Add the raisins to the oranges so they plump while preparing the rest of the dish. Trim the stalks from the fennel bulbs, reserving the fronds for garnish, and remove tough outer leaves. Cut the bulb in half lengthwise, trim the base, and cut out the core. Slice fennel into strips as thin as possible. Put the fennel slices in the bowl and add the olives, anchovies, vinegar, oil, basil, and fennel seeds. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper; toss gently to mix.

 

To serve, spoon the fennel salad down the length of a serving platter. Remove twine from the swordfish and slice into 1 1/2-inch steaks, lay the swordfish in the center, and drizzle platter with olive oil. Garnish with arugula, cherry tomatoes, and reserved fennel tops.


New Orleans Crab-cakes

 

1 ½      stalks   celery heart, finely chopped

½         red       bell pepper, finely chopped

½         med     white onion, finely chopped

2          bnch    scallion, green part only, finely chopped

2          tsp       dried basil

1          Tbs      fresh oregano leaves, chopped

2          tsp       fresh thyme leaves

Salt

Freshly ground black and white pepper

½         tsp       dill weed

½         cup      parsley leaves, finely chopped

3          cloves  garlic, finely chopped

2          x          egg whites, beaten to stiff peaks

½         cup      smoked salmon

1          cup      whipped cream

½         x          lemon, juiced

Hot sauce (recommended: Crystal's)

1          lb         jumbo lump crab

3          cups     seasoned bread crumbs

5          Tbs      corn or vegetable oil, for frying

2          Tbs      butter, for frying

Serving suggestion: Remoulade

 

 

In a big heavy bottomed frying pan sauté celery, peppers, onions, scallions in butter and oil. Add oregano, basil and thyme, salt and white pepper. Lastly add parsley and garlic and cook until soft. Leave to cool.

Finely chop smoked salmon, then flatten it, using the blade of a kitchen knife. Add the salmon to the whipped cream in a large mixing bowl. Add dill and season with salt and white pepper. Add 1/2 of the lemon juice and blend gently with spoon. Add 1 Tbs of the sautéed vegetables and herbs to the mousse. Fold egg whites into mousse.

Check the crabmeat for pieces of shell and put in a large clean bowl.

Season with a handful of bread crumbs, salt, pepper, hot sauce and remaining lemon juice.

Fold in mousse, taking care not to over mix it. Fold in the rest of the vegetables and herbs and a handful of bread crumbs. Blend it together very carefully with your hands taking care not to break up any of the crabmeat and overwork the mousse.

Gently work into little cakes and bread them with more bread crumbs. Set aside.

Heat the butter and oil in a large heavy-bottomed frying pan. Fry the crab cakes until golden brown on each side. Only turn them once after the bottom side is browned.

 

 

 

 

Blonde Remoulade:

1          cup      mayonnaise

1          Tbs      red bell pepper, finely chopped

3          Tbs      green onion, finely chopped

1          clove    garlic, finely chopped

1 ½      Tbs      Creole mustard

½         tsp       Creole seasoning

1          tsp       capers, roughly chopped

3          Tbs      parsley leaves, finely chopped

1          tsp       hot sauce (recommended Crystal's)

1          tsp       lemon juice

 

 

Chop all vegetable ingredients. Place in bowl and add remaining ingredients. Mix thoroughly then refrigerate.

*Cook's Note: It's best if you can make it the day before. Using a food processor will make your sauce watery.

 

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

 


Pistachio-Crusted Cod Fillets

 

½         cup                  pistachios; unsalted, shelled

⅓         cup                  breadcrumbs

2          Tbs      Parmesan cheese; grated

½         tsp       coarse salt

⅛         tsp      black pepper; finely ground

2          Tbs      olive oil

4          each    Cod Fillets; 4-6 oz

2          Tbs      Dijon-style mustard

 

Heat the oven to 425 °F.  Line a small baking sheet with foil and lightly grease the foil (spray is fine).

 

Chop the pistachios into medium-fine pieces.  Combine the nuts, bread crumbs, Parmesan, salt and pepper in a shallow bowl.  Drizzle with the olive oil and toss with a fork until the crumbs are evenly moistened.

 

If using fillets with tapered ends, loosely fold the ends under to create a fillet of even thickness.  Spread the top of each fillet evenly with the mustard.  Press the mustard-coated side of each fillet into the crumb mixture to generously coat the fish.  Set the fillets, coating side up, on the prepared pan.  Sprinkle remaining crumb mixture over the fillets to form a thick coating.

 

Bake the fillets until the topping is crisp and browned and the fish is cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes, depending on thickness.  Serve immediately.

 

 

 


Potato-Crusted Salmon with Chives and Scallion Sauce

 

2          large    potatoes, peeled

4          4-oz     salmon fillets or steaks

Salt and ground white pepper to taste

4          tsp       Dijon mustard

1          Tbs      extra virgin olive oil

Chive and scallion sauce (recipe follows)

 

Grate the potatoes using the large holes of the grater.

Pat the fish dry with paper towels. Season the fish lightly with salt and white pepper. Generously spread one side of each fillet or steak with the mustard (for fillets, spread mustard on the rounded side, not the skin side). Cover the mustard with enough grated potatoes to coat entirely. Cover the fish with plastic wrap and press the grated potatoes down onto the fish very firmly and tightly. Remove the wrap and season the potatoes with salt and white pepper.

 

Preheat oven to 425 °F.

 

In an ovenproof, nonstick frying pan, heat the olive oil. When hot, place the fish very gently in the pan, with crust side down, using a large spatula to avoid breaking the crust. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes until the potatoes are golden brown. Flip the fish carefully to the other side and finish cooking in the oven for about 5 minutes, or until the center of fillet is opaque in color.

 

Serve with Chive and Scallion Sauce.

 

CHIVE AND SCALLION SAUCE

1          Tbs      extra virgin olive oil

5          x          scallions, thinly sliced, white part only

1          Tbs      chopped fresh garlic

¼         cup      champagne vinegar

½         cup      chardonnay or other full bodied dry white wine

½         cup      evaporated skim milk

1          tsp       cornstarch mixed with 1 Tbs water

6          x          chives, snipped

Salt and ground white pepper to taste.

 

In a saucepan, heat the olive oil then add the scallions and Sauté for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and when fragrant, add the vinegar. Let reduce until almost dry. Pour in the wine and let reduce until half remains. Add the evaporated milk and the cornstarch mixture.

Remove from the heat as soon as it boils. Add the chives and adjust the seasoning with salt and white pepper.

 


Potato-Crusted Snapper

 

Instant potatoes and tangy buttermilk give delicate snapper a lightly crunchy coating.

 

½         cup      low-fat buttermilk

¼         tsp       salt

¼         tsp       black pepper

2          cloves  garlic, minced

¾         cup      instant potato flakes (not granules)

4          x          6-oz red snapper or mahi-mahi fillets

1          Tbs      butter or stick margarine

4          x          lemon wedges

 

Combine first 4 ingredients in a shallow dish. Place potato flakes in another shallow dish. Dip fillets in buttermilk mixture; dredge in potato flakes. Melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add fish; cook 3 minutes on each side or until golden and fish flakes easily when tested with a fork. Serve with lemon wedges.

 

4 servings

 

 

 

 

 


Prosciutto Wrapped Halibut with a Caper and Tomato Butter Sauce

 

4          x          6-oz halibut fillets

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

4          tsp       Dijon mustard

8          x          thin slices prosciutto ham

2          x          large Idaho potatoes, peeled and passed through the turning mandoline,

soaking in cool water

1          Tbs      chopped chives

Caper and Tomato Butter Sauce (recipe follows)

 

Preheat the oven to 400 °F. Season the fillets with salt and pepper. Rub 1 tsp of the mustard over each fillet, covering completely. Wrap each fillet with 2 pieces of the proscuitto ham. Drain the potatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Divide the potatoes into 4 equal piles. Wrap each fillet with one pile of the potatoes, tightly. Cover the potatoes with a damp cloth until ready to use. Repeat the process until all of the fillets are crusted. In a large, oven-proof sauté pan, heat the oil. When the oil is hot, carefully lay the fillets in the hot oil. Pan-fry for 3 to 4 minutes on the first side, or until the crust is golden. Flip the fillets over and place the pan in the oven. Cook for 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from the oven. To serve, spoon the sauce in the center of each plate. Place the crusted fillets in the center of the sauce. Garnish with chives. Serve immediately.

 

CAPER AND TOMATO BUTTER SAUCE

¼         cup      minced shallots

1          cup      white wine

Salt

Cayenne pepper

¼         cup      heavy cream

1 ½      sticks   cold butter, cut into pieces

¼         tsp       hot sauce

½         tsp       Worcestershire sauce

2          Tbs      chopped shallots

¼         cup      capers

½         cup      small diced tomatoes

 

 

In a saucepan, over medium heat, combine the shallots and wine. Season with salt and cayenne. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until the mixture reduces by half. Add the cream and continue to cook for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter, a couple of pieces at a time. Season with the salt, cayenne, hot sauce and Worcestershire. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Place back in the saucepan and add the shallots, capers and tomatoes. Stir well and keep warm.

 


Roasted Slashed Fillet of Sea Bass Stuffed with Herbs, Baked on Mushroom Potatoes with Salsa Verde -- a la Tony Blair

 

4          8-oz     sea bass fillets

1          hndful             mixed herbs (green or purple basil, parsley), roughly chopped

2 1/2    lbs        potatoes scrubbed

Olive oil

2          cloves  garlic, finely chopped

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1          hndful             parsley leaves, chopped

1 1/4    lbs        mixed, preferably wild, mushrooms, sliced

4          x          lemons

1 recipe salsa verde, recipe follows

 

Preheat the oven to 240C/475F/Gas 9. Slash the fish fillets about half way down and stuff with the herbs. Wash the potatoes and slice them lengthways, just under a 1/2-inch thick. Dry them off with kitchen paper and very lightly coat them in olive oil. Mix in half of your finely chopped garlic, season with salt and pepper, then lay them out in one layer on a flat baking tray. It is always helpful to put a bit of greaseproof on the bottom of the tray, rubbed with olive oil. Lay your potatoes out in a thin layer and put it in the oven for around 12 minutes until they are lightly golden and soft. Remove and put to one side. In a pan add the remaining garlic with 2 good knobs of butter and sprinkle with parsley. Now scatter the mushrooms over the potatoes. Place your sea bass fillets on top, cut the lemons in half and place in the tray as well. Now bake in the oven for 12 to15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish. Remove the tray, cover the top with foil and let sit for about 5 minutes during which time all the juices will run out onto the potatoes. Serve it with salsa verde and a crisp white wine.

 

Salsa Verde:

2          cloves  garlic, peeled

1          hndful capers (small)

1          hndful pickled gherkins (the ones in sweet vinegar) (small)

6          x          anchovy fillets

2          large handfuls flat-leaf parsley, leaves picked

1          bunch  fresh basil, leaves picked

1          hndful             fresh mint, leaves picked

1          Tbs      Dijon mustard

3          Tbs      red wine vinegar

8          Tbs      best quality olive oil

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

 

 

The secret of a good salsa verde is to chop all the ingredients very finely and to use it the same day, as it doesn't tend to keep for long, even in the fridge. A fantastic accompaniment to any grilled meat or fish. Particularly good with sea bass recipe.  Finely chop the first 7 ingredients and put them into a bowl. Add the mustard and red wine vinegar then slowly stir in the olive oil. Balance the flavors with freshly ground black pepper and, if necessary, sea salt and a little more red wine vinegar. Yield: 8 servings



 


Salmon Glazed with Honey and Mustard

 

½         cup      olive oil

¼         cup      honey

¼         cup      Dijon Mustard

4          cloves  garlic, minced

½         tsp       ground black pepper

½         tsp       salt

6          6-7 oz  salmon fillets

3          Tbs      chopped fresh dill

 

Whisk olive oil through salt.  Add salmon and turn to coat.  Cover and refrigerate 2 hours.

 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Lightly oil rimmed baking sheet.  Transfer salmon, skin side down, to prepared sheet.  Reserve marinade for glaze.  Sprinkle salmon with dill.  Bake 8 minutes, then brush with reserved glaze.  Continue baking until just opaque in center, about 8 minutes longer.

 


Salmon with Brown Sugar and Mustard Glaze

 

Salmon:

3          Tbs      light brown sugar

1          Tbs      honey

2          Tbs      butter

¼         cup      Dijon mustard

2          Tbs      soy sauce

2          Tbs      olive oil

1          Tbs      finely grated ginger

Vegetable oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

8          x          salmon fillets, 6 oz each

 

On the side burner, melt the brown sugar, honey and butter in a small sauté pan over medium-high heat. Remove from the heat and whisk in the mustard, soy sauce, olive oil and ginger. Let cool.

 

Preheat grill to medium heat. Brush salmon with vegetable oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Place the salmon skin side down on the grill. Coat the flesh of the salmon fillets with the brown sugar mixture. Grill for 6 to 8 minutes to medium doneness, turning once after 5 to 6 minutes.

 

Yield: 8 servings

 


Salmon with Fennel

 

Note that this is a recipe for 10 to 15, so change the recipe accordingly.  This is a wonderfully fresh and simple fish dish.

 

1          x          10 pound fresh salmon

5          cups     sliced yellow onions, 1/4-inch thick (3 lbs)

5          cups     sliced fennel bulbs, 1/4-inch thick (3 lbs)

½         cup      good olive oil

3          Tbs      fresh thyme leaves, coarsely chopped

2          Tbs      coarsely chopped fennel fronds

1          x          orange, zested

2          Tbs      freshly squeezed orange juice

2          tsp       kosher salt

1          tsp       freshly ground black pepper

 

Have the fishmonger cut the head and tail off the salmon and butterfly it, removing all the bones. You should have about 7 lbs of salmon.

Preheat the oven to 500 °F.

 

Sauté the onions and fennel in the olive oil for 10 minutes on medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Add the thyme leaves, fennel fronds, orange zest, orange juice, salt, and pepper and sauté for 5 more minutes, until the onions and fennel are tender. Taste for salt and pepper.

 

Lay the salmon, skin side down, on a cutting board and sprinkle both sides generously with salt and pepper. Spread the fennel filling over half of the salmon. Pull the other half up and over the filling, enclosing it. Tie the salmon every 2 inches with kitchen string to secure the stuffing.

 

Place a sheet pan lined with parchment paper in the oven for 5 minutes to heat it. Carefully transfer the salmon to the hot sheet pan and bake it for exactly 30 minutes (10 minutes for each 1-inch of thickness). Do not over bake!

 

Allow to cool slightly, then remove the strings. To serve, cut into thick slices with a very sharp knife. This salmon is delicious hot or at room temperature.

 

Note: If you're making this in advance, be sure to cool the filling before stuffing the salmon. Refrigerate until ready to roast.

 

 

 


Sea Bass with Lemon and Caper Sauce

 

2          6-oz     sea bass fillets

Salt and freshly ground white pepper

1          oz        olive oil

6          oz        butter

½         cup      bread, crust trimmed, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

8          oz        assorted baby vegetables (baby carrots, baby turnips,

asparagus tips, yellow zucchini), blanched in salted boiling water

¼                     cup      brunoise red bell peppers

1          Tbs      minced shallots

¼         cup      chopped lemon sections and juice

2          Tbs      minced parsley leaves

2          Tbs      minced chives

1          tsp       minced tarragon leaves

1          Tbs      capers

1          Tbs      caper berries, halved lengthwise

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.

Season sea bass fillets with salt and pepper. In a Sauté pan, over high heat, add the olive oil and sear fish fillets skin side down first, for 3 minutes or until golden brown. Turn fish over and cook another 4 minutes or until cooked through.

 

Meanwhile, prepare the croutons. Melt 2 Tbs of butter. Toss with bread cubes and transfer to a baking sheet. Bake in oven for 4 minutes or until crisp and golden in color. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside.

 

In another Sauté pan, heat 2 Tbs of butter. Over high heat, Sauté the baby vegetables until glazed. Divide into 2 and mound in center of plate. Keep warm.

 

Add the remaining 2 oz of butter to the fillets and baste them with the butter. Place a fillet and the red peppers on top of the vegetables. Sprinkle half of the croutons on top and around each fillet. To butter, add shallots and continue to cook until butter turns brown. Deglaze with lemon juice, and add the lemon pieces, parsley, chives, tarragon, capers, and caper berries. When heated, pour half over and around each fillet. Serve immediately.

 

Note: if sea bass is not available, any firm white fish can be substituted.

 


Seared Salmon with Balsamic Glaze

 

This is a nice tangy glaze that brings out the sweetness of the crisp-crusted salmon.

 

¼         cup      balsamic vinegar

¼         cup      water

1 ½      Tbs      fresh lemon juice

4          tsp       packed light brown sugar

4          6 oz     center-cut salmon fillets

2          tsp       vegetable oil

 

Stir together vinegar, water, lemon juice and brown sugar.  Pat salmon dry and season with salt and pepper.

 

Heat oil in a 12 inch non-stick skillet over a moderately high heat until hot but not smoking.  Increase heat to high and sear salmon, skin side up, until well browned, about 4 minutes.  Turn fish over and sear until just cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes more.

 

Transfer salmon to plates and carefully add vinegar mixture to skillet.  Simmer, stirring, until thickened and reduced to about 1/3 cup, about 2 minutes.

 

Spoon glaze over salmon.


Skate Wings with Grenoble Sauce

 

8          3-4 oz  skate wings, cleaned

Salt and Freshly ground black pepper

¼         cup      flour

2          Tbs      olive oil

¼         cup      minced shallots

2          Tbs      capers

2          x          lemons. juiced

1          cup      dry white wine

1          stick     butter, cut into cubes

1          Tbs + 1 tsp      finely chopped fresh parsley leaves

2          cups     assorted vegetables, blanched if needed

(such as haricots verts, baby carrots, halved, thinly sliced squash,

thinly sliced zucchini, thinly sliced shiitake mushrooms,

thinly sliced red onions, etc,)

 

Season the skate with salt and pepper. Season the flour with salt and pepper. Dredge the skate in the flour, coating completely.

 

In a large sauté pan, over medium heat, add the oil. When the oil is hot, sauté the skate for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until nicely browned.  Remove the fish from the pan and set aside.

 

Add the shallots and capers. Season with pepper. Sauté for 1 minute. Add the lemon juice and wine.  Bring the liquid to a boil.  Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until the liquid reduces by half, about 6 to 8 minutes. Whisk in the butter, a cube at a time. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in 1 Tbs of parsley.

 

Add the fish back into the sauce and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes.

 

In another sauté pan, heat the remaining Tbs of the oil. When the oil is hot, add the vegetables.  Season with salt and pepper.  Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes.

 

To serve, spoon the vegetables in the center of each plate. Place the skate on top of the vegetables and spoon the sauce over the fish. Garnish with remaining parsley.

 


Skate with Garlic Buerre Blanc and Balsamic Glaze

 

Buerre Blanc:

3          Tbs      white wine

1          Tbs      white wine vinegar

1 ½      Tbs      shallots, chopped

1          tsp       garlic, chopped

1          Tbs      heavy cream

8          oz        butter, cut into 1 inch cubes

Salt and pepper to taste

1          tsp       roasted garlic puree (make extra for other uses)

2          whole garlic cloves

 

Balsamic Reduction:

1          Tbs      ketchup

1          cup      balsamic vinegar

2          Tbs      soy sauce

 

4          8-oz     skate wing fillets

 

 

Do these first 3 steps together. Combine wine, vinegar, shallots and raw garlic in medium saucepan, bring to boil and cook over high heat until reduced to almost dry (don't burn). At this point add heavy cream and set aside.

Combine ketchup, balsamic vinegar and soy sauce in saucepan and bring to boil. Cook over high heat until reduced to a syrupy glaze (it will be thicker when cooled), set aside.

 

To finish buerre blanc return saucepan to medium heat. When cream is hot, whisk in butter, 1 to 2 pieces at a time, allowing each piece to be incorporated before adding more, don't allow to boil. When all is incorporated, add salt and pepper and roasted garlic puree. Can keep warm about 1 to 2 hours, not to hot though (keep in thermos).

 

Heat nonstick pan over medium high heat, season skate fillets with salt and pepper, then dredge lightly in flour. Put oil into sauté pan, add skate, (whiter side down first). Don't turnover until browned nicely (peek, but use restraint and wait). Then flip over to other side and cook another 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from pan with a spatula if possible and set on a buttered or non stick baking sheet. When all fish is Sautéed and ready to serve, heat in oven until hot. Place a spoonful of butter sauce onto each plate, then the fillet of skate onto the sauce. Drizzle each fillet with ribbons of balsamic glaze and serve

 


Skate with Shrimp and Artichoke Vinaigrette

 

2          lbs cleaned skate fillets

Salt

Essence, recipe in the Sauces and Rubs section

½         cup                  seasoned flour, for dredging

¼         cup                  olive oil

 

For the vinaigrette:

¼         cup      extra-virgin olive oil PLUS

2          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

2          Tbs      minced shallots

1          tsp       minced garlic

1          tsp       chopped thyme

1/2       x          red onion, julienned

¼         cup      fresh lemon juice, PLUS

2          Tbs      fresh lemon juice

3          x          plum tomatoes, seeded and julienned

1/4       cup      Kalamata, or other black brine-cured olives, pitted and halved

1          cup      cooked artichoke hearts, thinly sliced

1/2       lb         cooked shrimp, cut in half down the center

1          tsp       salt

1/2       tsp       crushed red pepper

1/4       cup      chiffonade basil

 

 

Season skate with salt and Essence on both sides and dredge in flour to lightly coat, shaking off any excess flour. In a large skillet, add olive oil and heat until hot but not smoking. Sauté skate for 3 minutes on each side, or until golden brown on both sides. Transfer to a warm plate and set aside while you make the sauce.

 

For the Vinaigrette: In a large Sauté pan heat 2 Tbs of the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the shallots, garlic, and thyme and Sauté for 1 minute. Add the red onion and Sauté for 2 minutes. Add the lemon juice, tomatoes, olives, artichokes, shrimp, salt and red pepper, and Sauté just until heated through, about 1 minute. Add the basil and remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil and stir well to combine. Spoon the sauce over the skate and serve immediately.

 

 


The Ultimate Crab Cakes with Remoulade

 

2          lbs        russet potatoes, cut into 1-inch cubes

1          cup      whole milk

2          clove    garlic, smashed

¼         bunch  fresh thyme sprigs

2          bay      leaves

½         tsp       whole black peppercorns

1          lb         fresh jumbo lump crabmeat

2          tsp       salt

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

½         bunch  fresh chives, finely chopped

3          cups     bread crumbs

5          Tbs      vegetable oil, for frying

Lemon slices, for garnish

Green salad, as accompaniment

Remoulade, recipe follows

 

Put potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold water. Add salt and bring to the boil, uncovered. Simmer for about 20 minutes until there is no resistance when a fork is inserted

 

Drain the potatoes and make sure they are dry. Mash them in a large bowl until all there are no lumps.

 

While the potatoes are cooking, heat the milk, garlic, thyme, bay leaves, peppercorns and 1 Tbs of butter in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Do not let it boil. Using a sieve, strain the milk and herbs into the potatoes and mix thoroughly. Add the chopped chives and season with salt and pepper.

 

Check crabmeat for pieces of shell. Cover with cling-film and leave in the refrigerator until ready to use. Remove and fold carefully into the potatoes. Using your hands shape the mixture into medium sized patties, taking care to flatten out the centers and smooth out the top.

 

Roll them in bread crumbs and shake off excess.

 

Coat a large non-stick skillet with a 1/4-inch of oil and heat over a medium heat until it begins to smoke slightly. Pan-fry the crab cakes until brown, about 5 minutes on each side, turning carefully with a spatula. Remove from pan and serve on a large flat dish with Remoulade.

 

Garnish with slices of lemon and serve with a green salad.

 

 

 

Remoulade:

2          cups     mayonnaise

1          tsp       Dijon mustard

2          Tbs      cornichons or sour gherkins, minced

3          Tbs      capers, minced

1          cloves  garlic, minced

2          Tbs      chopped parsley leaves

1          Tbs      chopped tarragon leaves

1 ½      x          anchovies, minced

Several dashes hot pepper sauce

 

Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl. Refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving.

Yield: 6 servings

 

 


Ultimate Paella

 

Spice Mix for chicken, recipe follows

1          each     frying chicken, cut into 10 pieces

1/4       cup      extra-virgin olive oil

2          each     Spanish chorizo sausages, thickly sliced

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

1          each     Spanish onion, diced

4          each     garlic cloves, crushed

1          bunch flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped, reserve some for garnish

1          can       (15-oz) whole tomatoes, drained and hand-crushed

4          cups     short grain Spanish rice

6          cups     water, warm

1          oz        saffron threads

1          dozen littleneck clams, scrubbed

1          lb         jumbo shrimp, peeled and de-veined

2          each     lobster tails

1/2       cup      sweet peas, frozen and thawed

Lemon wedges, for serving

Special equipment:

Large paella pan or wide shallow skillet

 

Rub the spice mix all over the chicken and marinate chicken for 1 hour in the refrigerator.

Heat oil in a paella pan over medium-high heat. Sauté the chorizo until browned, remove and reserve. Add chicken skin-side down and brown on all sides, turning with tongs. Add salt and freshly ground pepper. Remove from pan and reserve.

 

In the same pan, make a sofrito by sautéing the onions, garlic, and parsley. Cook for 2 or 3 minutes on a medium heat. Then, add tomatoes and cook until the mixture caramelizes a bit and the flavors meld. Fold in the rice and stir-fry to coat the grains. Pour in water and simmer for 10 minutes, gently moving the pan around so the rice cooks evenly and absorbs the liquid. Add chicken, chorizo, and saffron. Add the clams and shrimp, tucking them into the rice. The shrimp will take about 8 minutes to cook. Give the paella a good shake and let it simmer, without stirring, until the rice is al dente, for about 15 minutes. During the last 5 minutes of cooking, when the rice is filling the pan, add the lobster tails. When the paella is cooked and the rice looks fluffy and moist, turn the heat up for 40 seconds until you can smell the rice toast at the bottom, then it's perfect.  Remove from heat and rest for 5 minutes. Garnish with peas, parsley and lemon wedges.

 

Spice Mix for chicken:

1          Tbs      sweet paprika

2          tsp       dried oregano

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

 

Combine ingredients in a small bowl. Rub the spice mixture all over the chicken; marinate for 1 hour, covered


Who Put the Yummy Fat on my Chilean Sea Bass?

 

---Sauce

1/3       cup      shallots, sliced

1/3       cup      ginger, sliced

1          cup      dry white wine

1/2       cup      cream

4          Tbs      butter, chilled cut into little cubes

 

---Glaze

1/3       cup      soy sauce

3          Tb        honey

1/4       cup      sherry vinegar

2          Tb        water

1 1/2    tsp       cornstarch

 

---Fish

1          lb         Chilean Sea Bass filets

 

Sauce

1. Put shallots, ginger & wine in a sauce pan and bring to a light boil for 5 minutes.

 

2. Add cream and simmer for an additional 3 minutes until reduced about one half.  Remove from heat.

 

Glaze

1. Put water and cornstarch together and mix well.

 

2. Put soy sauce, honey & vinegar in a sauce pan and mix well.  Bring up to medium heat and add water mixture.  Keep over medium heat mixing until mixtures becomes a nice glaze.  Remove from heat.

 

Doing the Fish et al

1. Preheat the oven to 350 °F

 

2. Put the filets on a baking sheet and brush some of the glaze over the fish.  Place the fish into the oven and cook for about 15 minutes until the fish is opaque white through (yet still nice, tender fish).

3. Meanwhile, reheat the sauce and when just simmering, start adding the butter chunks, one by one.  When you add a chunk, wait until it just starts to melt and then stir it into the sauce.  When no longer visible as a butter chunk, add the next chunk

4. When the fish is out of the oven, dump as much glaze as you desire on it, coating it nicely.  Then spoon the extra buttery ginger/shallot sauce over it.

 

 

 


Main Dishes – Pizza and Pasta

 

                                                     

 

 

 

Pizza has to be the easiest and most fun lunch or dinner to prepare.  Kids can create their own individual pizzas, and you can easily experiment with all of your favorite veggies and meats to find your next favorite. 

 

Now, although you will find recipes for crust and sauce, I will also mention here our secret for a really easy to make a quick meal.  At the supermarket you can get pre-made pizza crust shells.  Boboli is the one we can find most easily our here, and the thin crust is our favorite.  MUCH better than that, both fun and taste wise, is pre-made, fresh dough balls.  Trader Joe’s carries them for under a buck.  More authentic, but without the hassle of making it from scratch.  Pick up a can of Hunt’s pizza sauce, and slices of Provolone or Mozzarella cheese.  Finally, the most important items.  Do yourself a favor and spring for a pizza stone (about $30) and a pizza peel (about $25).  This makes all of the difference for a nice crust on the pizza, and ease of getting it in and out of the oven. 

 

There you have it.  Start adding toppings (or not) and start enjoying.  If you are going to add Basil leaves, get the freshest leaves you can possibly find.  It makes all the difference.  Provolone cheese over mozzarella makes a big difference, however you might try a fresh mozzarella ball, sliced thin, just once to see how you like it. 

 

The freshly make sauce makes a huge difference, very sweet and bright.  The crust takes several times to get right, so be ready for not so perfect crust the first few times.  Still really tasty, but perhaps not the most perfectly round and even pizza you will have eaten.


Pizza Crust

 

1          pkg      active dry yeast

1          tsp       sugar

1          cup      warm water

1          Tbs      kosher salt

Extra-virgin olive oil

3          cups     00 flour, plus more for dusting

 

In the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the yeast, sugar, and warm water; stir gently to dissolve. Let the mixture stand until the yeast comes alive and starts to foam, about 5 to 10 minutes.

 

Turn the mixer on low and add the salt and 2 Tbs of olive oil. Add the flour, a little at a time, mixing at the lowest speed until all the flour has been incorporated. When the dough starts to come together, increase the speed to medium; stop the machine periodically to scrape the dough off the hook. Get a feel for the dough by squeezing a small amount together: if it's crumbly, add more water; if it's sticky, add more flour - 1 Tbs at a time. Mix until the dough gathers into a ball, this should take about 5 minutes.

 

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and fold it over itself a few times; kneading until it's smooth and elastic. Form the dough into a round and place in a lightly oiled bowl, turn it over to coat. Cover with plastic wrap or a damp towel and let it rise in a warm spot (i.e. over a gas pilot light) until doubled in size, about 1 hour. This is a good time to stick a pizza stone in the oven and preheat them to 500 °F.

 

Once the dough is domed and spongy, turn it out onto a lightly floured counter. Roll and stretch the dough into a cylinder and divide into 3 equal pieces. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes so it will be easier to roll out.

 

Roll or pat out a piece of dough into a 12 inch circle, about 1/8-inch thick. Dust a pizza paddle with flour and slide it under the pizza dough. Brush the crust with a thin layer of olive oil, and top with your favorite flavors. Slide the pizza onto the hot stone in the oven and bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until the crust is golden and crisp. Repeat with the remaining dough.

 

Yield: 3 pizza crusts

Pizza Sauce

 

2 Tbs olive oil, to sauté

1 small white or sweet onion, finely diced

1 red, yellow or orange bell pepper (or mixed)

1 clove garlic, peeled and minced

1 can (28-oz) tomatoes pureed or crushed or whole

(depending on how chunky you want it)

6 to 8 fresh basil leaves, chopped fine

1          tsp       dried oregano

1          pinch   salt

1          pinch   fresh ground black pepper

1          pinch   sugar, optional

 

Empty the contents of the tomato can in a mixing bowl (if whole, coarsely crush the tomatoes with a fork or your hands, leaving them just a little chunky). In a heavy bottom 2-quart saucepot, add the olive oil, over a medium high flame and heat a little. Add the onions and sauté until slightly translucent. Add the bell pepper and sauté another 3 or 4 minutes.  Add the garlic and sauté about a minute until golden. Quickly add the crushed tomatoes to the mix. Stir well and bring to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and add the fresh basil and oregano. You can add a touch of sugar if desired or if tomatoes are tart. Simmer on a low flame, stirring often for 30-45 minutes. 

 

Depending on how chunky you like your sauce (try it both ways), feel free to puree the sauce in a blender or food processor. 

 

Be very careful pureeing hot liquids – they tend to explode when you turn on the mixer, so pulse the mixer and use small amounts at a time. 

 

If not using right away, cool down and store in airtight container in the refrigerator, up to 1 week.

 

 

 


Pizza Toppings, and Putting it all Together

 

This is the creative part.  You can pretty much add whatever you feel like.  HOWEVER…. Stick to some basics in the beginning.  About the most basic, and truly Italian pizza is the pizza Margherita (no, not the drink, the Queen!).  This pizza was invented in 1889 by Neapolitan pizzaiolo Raffaele Esposito and named for Queen Margherita of Italy. The pizza echoes the colors of the flag of the newly united Italy: red (tomatoes), white (mozzarella), and green (basil).  It is simple and fresh tasting, and echoes the classic feel of Italy like no other pizza.  The recipe and others follow, but simply consider Crust, Sauce, Cheese (of a variety from mozzarella or provolone to goat cheese) and then… TOPPINGS! 

 

Be creative.  How about wild mushrooms, or pepperoni (pre-fried Italian sausage, smoked sausage or bacon… you get the idea), or ham and pineapple, or barbeque chicken, or sun-dried tomatoes in oil, or red, yellow and orange bell peppers, or even artichoke hearts or bottoms (use frozen or fresh, the canned/bottled is has too much vinegar flavor to them for me).  Try any combination of these.  Come up with your own.  For a simple, a bit more complex and a fairly complicated example, here are three ideas:

 

 

 

Pizza Margherita

 

Crust and Sauce of your choice

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

10-15 fresh Basil leaves

Mozzarella cheese

 

Use the Crust of your choice, brush with extra virgin olive oil, add the Sauce of your choice, and then add fresh Basil leaves over the sauce (covering about half the sauce area) and top with cheese, then finish off with a quick turn of olive oil again.   450 for 10-12 minutes.

 

 

Barbecued Chicken Pizza

 

1 cup store bought roast chicken or left over chicken, shredded,

1 cup barbecue sauce

1/4 cup chopped scallions, including most of the green part

 

Use the crust of your choice.  Mix the chicken with 3/4 cup of barbecue sauce. Brush the crust with olive oil as usual, then brush the entire crust with remaining barbecue sauce.  Scatter the chicken pieces and scallions on top of the crust. Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the other ingredients.

 

 

Clams Casino Pizza

 

8          dozen  large hard-shell clams, such as cherrystone or chowder clams

¼         tsp       salt

1          x          bay leaves

1/3       tsp       freshly squeezed lemon juice

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Extra-virgin olive oil

1          small    onion, chopped

½         x          red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and chopped

1          clove    garlic, chopped

1          med     vine-ripe tomatoes, seeded and chopped

1          x          fresh oregano sprigs, leaves striped from the stem

5          oz        ricotta cheese

3-4       strips    bacon, sliced

¼         cup      freshly grated pecorino

1          small    handful fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped

 

Wash and scrub clams well to remove the exterior sand. Fill a steamer or pot with 1-inch of water, add 1/2 tsp of salt, and toss in the bay leaves. Heat until the water is simmering and then add the clams. Cover and steam for 5 to 10 minutes until the clams open - discard any that do not. Remove the clams from the shells, coarsely chop them up, and put in a bowl. Add the lemon juice, a drizzle of olive oil, and season with salt and pepper; set aside.

Coat a sauté pan with 2 Tbs of the olive oil and place over medium heat. When the oil gets hazy, add the onion, bell pepper, garlic, tomatoes, and oregano. Cook and stir until the vegetables have cooked down and are really soft, about 10 minutes; season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat.

 

Spread the ricotta evenly on the crust with a back of a spoon. Scatter the chopped clams all around and top with the sautéed red pepper mixture. Distribute the pieces of bacon on top. Slide the pizza onto the hot stone in the oven and bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until the crust is golden and crisp, and the cheese is bubbly.

 

Before cutting the pizza into slices, drizzle with olive oil, grate pecorino on top, and shower with chopped parsley.

 

 

 

 


Baked Ziti

 

1          lb         dried ziti pasta

Kosher salt

3 ½      cups     quick marinara sauce, recipe follows

½         cup      freshly grated Parmesan, divided

¼         cup      grated pecorino romano

1          lb         fresh mozzarella, half cut into 1/2-inch cubes and half thinly sliced

Freshly ground black pepper

Pinch of crushed red pepper or to taste

 

Preheat the oven to 400 °F. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt generously, and boil the pasta until al dente, tender but still slightly firm. Drain.

In a large bowl, toss the cooked pasta with the marinara sauce, 1/4 cup of the Parmesan, the pecorino, and the cubed mozzarella pieces. Season with the black pepper and red pepper to taste, and mix until well combined. Transfer the pasta to an oiled 9- x 13-inch baking dish. Cover the top of the pasta with the sliced mozzarella, and sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan. Bake until lightly browned and hot, about 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

 

 

Quick Marinara Sauce

2 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 medium onion, diced (about 3 Tbs)

3 cloves garlic, chopped

3 1/2 cups whole, peeled, canned tomatoes in puree, (one 28-oz can), roughly chopped

Sprig of fresh thyme

Sprig of fresh basil

2 tsp kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

 

 

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Sauté the onion and garlic, stirring, until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes and the herb sprigs and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.

Remove and discard the herb sprigs. Stir in the salt and season with pepper to taste. Use now, or store covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 2 months.

 

 


Cajun Jambalaya Pasta

 

½         tsp       white pepper

½         tsp                   cayenne pepper

1 ½      tsp                   salt

½         tsp                   paprika

¼         tsp                   garlic powder

2          ea         boneless, skinless, chicken breast; -- halved

½         lb  large shrimp -- peeled and deveined

5          qts       water

6          oz                    plain fettuccine

6          oz                    spinach fettuccine

2          Tbs      olive oil

2          med                 tomatoes -- chopped

1          small   green bell pepper -- sliced

1          small   red bell pepper -- sliced

1          small   yellow bell pepper -- sliced

1          med     onion -- sliced

1 ½      cups    chicken stock

1          Tbs      cornstarch

2          Tbs      white wine

2          tsp                   chopped fresh parsley

¼         tsp                   onion powder

 

Make a Cajun seasoning blend by combining the white pepper, cayenne pepper, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder in a small bowl. Cut the chicken breasts into bite-size pieces. Use about one- third of the seasoning blend to coat the chicken pieces. In another bowl, sprinkle another one-third of the spice blend over the shrimp. Start your pasta cooking by bringing 5 quarts of water to a boil over high heat. Add both fettuccine to the hot water, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer for 12 to 14 minutes or until the pasta is tender. While the pasta cooks, heat 1 Tbs of the olive oil in a large frying pan or skillet over high heat. When the oil is hot, Sauté' the chicken in the pan for about 2 minutes per side or until the surface of the chicken starts to turn brown. Add the shrimp to the pan with the chicken and cook another 2 minutes, stirring occasionally to keep the shrimp from sticking.

 

When the chicken and shrimp have been seared, pour the contents of the pan onto a plate or into a bowl. Do not rinse the pan! Put the pan back over high heat and add the remaining Tbs of oil to the pan. Add the tomatoes, peppers and onions to the oil. Sprinkle the vegetables with the remaining spice blend and Sauté' for about 10 minutes or until the vegetables begin to turn dark brown or black. Add the chicken and shrimp to the vegetables and pour 3/4 cup of the chicken stock in the pan. Cook over high heat until the stock has been reduced to just about nothing. Add the remaining 3/4 cup of stock to the pan. The liquid should become dark as it deglazes the pan of the dark film left by the spices and cooking food. Stir constantly, scraping the blackened stuff on the bottom of the pan. Reduce the broth a bit more, then turn the heat down to low.

 

Combine the arrowroot with the wine in a small bowl. Stir until it is dissolved. Add this to the pan and simmer over low heat until the sauce thickens slightly. When the pasta is done, drain it and spoon half onto a plate.

 

Spoon half of the jambalaya over the pasta. Sprinkle half the parsley over the top. Repeat for the second serving.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Dirty Black Eyed Peas

 

½         lb         raw bacon, diced

2          cups     chopped onions

4          oz        pickled pork meat, cubed

2          x          smoked ham hocks, about 3 to 4 oz each

2          Tbs      chopped garlic

2          x          bay leaves

3          sprigs   fresh thyme

1          lb         dried black eyed peas

10        cups     chicken stock

Salt and pepper

 

In a large pan, over medium heat, render the bacon until crispy, about 4 to 6 minutes. Add the onions and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Season the onions with salt and pepper. Stir in the pickled pork meat and ham hocks. Sauté for 2 minutes. Stir in the garlic, bay leaves, thyme, black eyed peas and chicken stock. Season the mixture with salt and pepper. Bring the liquid to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until the peas are tender. Remove the pork meat and ham hock from the peas. Thinly slice both meats and add back to the peas. Ladle into bowls and serve with crusty bread.

 

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

 


Hilda McKibbon’s Lasagna

 

Meat sauce:

1          lb         Italian sausage

1          clove    garlic, minced

1          Tbs      whole basil

1 ½      tsp       salt

1          can       tomatoes, 1 lb

2          6 oz     tomato paste

 

Filling:

10        oz        pkg Lasagna noodles

3          cups     Ricotta or creamy cottage cheese

½         cup      Parmesan/Romano cheese, grated

2          Tbs      parsley flakes

2          each     eggs, beaten

1          tsp       salt

½         tsp       pepper

 

1          lb         Mozzarella cheese, sliced thin

 

Brown meat slowly, spoon off excess fat.  Add next 5 ingredients (to the tomato paste).  Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

 

Cook noodles until tender, drain and rinse.  Put aside.  Combine remaining ingredients except for the Mozzarella.

 

Place half of the noodles in a 13x9x2 inch baking pan.  Spread with half the cheese filling.  Add half the Mozzarella cheese and half the meat sauce.  Repeat layers.  Bake at 375 °F for 30 minutes.  Let stand 10 minutes before cutting into squares.  If made early and refrigerated, allow 15 more minutes in oven (45 minutes total) until bubbly.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Louisiana Red Beans and Rice

 

1          lb         dried small red beans, picked over and rinsed

2          large    smoked ham hocks

1          large    yellow onion, chopped

2          x          celery stalks, chopped

1          x          large green bell pepper, chopped

1          tsp       cayenne

¼         bunch  fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped

2          sprigs   fresh thyme

3          bay      leaves

4          cloves  garlic, chopped

2          x          green onions, green part only, chopped, plus more for garnish

Red pepper sauce

2          x          andouille sausages, cut into 3-inch chunks

4          cups     cooked white rice

 

 

Place the dried beans in a large bowl and cover with cold water. Soak the beans overnight in the refrigerator.

Drain the beans and put them in a large heavy pot with the ham hocks, adding just enough cold water to cover (about 2 quarts). Add the onion, celery, green pepper, cayenne, parsley, thyme, bay leaves, garlic, green onions, and several shakes of red pepper sauce; give everything a good stir to combine. Simmer, uncovered, until the beans are tender and starting to thicken, about 21/2 hours. You want the beans to be almost overcooked, like they are getting ready to burst. Stir the beans occasionally to prevent scorching on the bottom of the pot. Add about 1 cup of water toward the end of cooking if the mixture appears too thick or dry.

 

Mash about 1 cup of the cooked beans against the side of the pot with a wooden spoon, this makes the broth thick and creamy. Toss in the sausages and cook for another 30 minutes to heat them through. Adjust the seasoning, if needed. Serve the red beans in a wide bowl over some steamed white rice and garnished with chopped green onion.

 

Yield: 6 servings

 

 

 


Manicotti

 

1          lb         fresh spinach, stems trimmed and well washed or a 10-oz package

frozen spinach, thawed

Kosher salt, plus 1/2 tsp

12        x          manicotti shells

3          cups     marinara sauce, recipe follows

1 ½      cups     ricotta cheese (about 1 pound)

1          cup      shredded mozzarella cheese (about 4 oz)

1          cup      freshly grated Parmesan cheese or mixture of half Pecorino and Parmesan

2          large    eggs, lightly beaten

Pinch freshly grated nutmeg

Freshly ground pepper

2          tsp       unsalted butter, diced

 

Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat, and season generously with salt. Fill a medium bowl with ice water and season with salt, as well. Boil the spinach, uncovered, until tender, about 3 to 4 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon, (do not drain), and immediately plunge the spinach into the ice water. Drain and squeeze the excess water from the spinach, and finely chop. Alternatively, if using thawed spinach, simply squeeze, and finely chop.

 

In the same large pot of boiling water, cook the pasta shells until al dente, tender but still slightly firm. Drain and pat dry.

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F.

 

Cover the bottom of a 9- x 13-inch ovenproof baking dish with 1 cup of the marinara sauce. In a medium mixing bowl, evenly combine the ricotta, mozzarella, and 1/3 cup of the Parmesan, the eggs, and the spinach. Season with the 1/2 tsp salt, nutmeg, and pepper to taste. Spoon the cheese mixture into the manicotti shell and line them up in the baking dish. Cover with the remaining sauce. Scatter the remaining cheese on top and dot with the butter. Bake for 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

 

 

Marinara Sauce:

2 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 medium onion, diced (about 3 Tbs)

3 cloves garlic, chopped

3 1/2 cups whole, peeled, canned tomatoes in puree, (one 28-oz can), roughly chopped

Sprig of fresh thyme

Sprig of fresh basil

2 tsp kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

 

 

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Sauté the onion and garlic, stirring, until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes and the herb sprigs and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.

Remove and discard the herb sprigs. Stir in the salt and season with pepper to taste. Use now, or store covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 2 months.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Pasta with Dino's Marinara Sauce

 

Use it with purchased tortellini or pour it over chicken, then bake it, for an instant cacciatore-style dish.

 

3          Tbs      olive oil

1          large    onion, chopped

6          cloves  garlic, sliced

1          lb         fresh mushrooms, sliced

 

 

½         tsp       dried crushed red pepper

1          can       Italian plum tomatoes, chopped, juices reserved, 28-oz

1          can       tomato sauce 15-oz

1          tsp       sugar

1 ½      tsp       dried basil, crumbled

¾         tsp       dried oregano, crumbled

 

 

1          pkg      9- to 10-oz, purchased tortellini, freshly cooked

3          Tbs      chopped fresh parsley

Grated Parmesan cheese

 

Heat oil in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add onion; sauté until tender, about 10 minutes. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add mushrooms and crushed red pepper; sauté until mushrooms just begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and reserved juices.

 

Cover and simmer 15 minutes. Add tomato sauce, sugar, basil and oregano. Cover and cook 15 minutes. Uncover and simmer until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

 

Add tortellini and 2 Tbs parsley to sauce. Transfer to large bowl. Garnish with remaining parsley. Serve, passing Parmesan separately.

 

Serves 4.

 

 

 


Penne Alla Vodka

 

This is more an American-Italian recipe than an Italian-American one. I found myself making this innovative dish, which always charmed our customers, quite a bit in the early 1970s.

 

As simple a dish as this is, I have had requests for it in all my restaurants as far back as I can remember: I like the sauce a little feisty, so I'm generous with the crushed red pepper. You can add as much — or as little — as you like.

 

Often, restaurant chefs finish this dish by swirling butter into the sauce at the end. You can do the same, or use olive oil to finish the sauce. I prefer olive oil, but I probably don't have to tell you that by now.

 

Salt

1          can       35-oz Italian plum tomatoes (preferably San Marzano) with their liquid

1          lb         penne

¼         cup      extra-virgin olive oil

10        clove    garlic, peeled

Crushed hot red pepper

¼         cup      vodka

½         cup      heavy cream

2          Tbs      unsalted butter or olive oil for finishing the sauce, if you like

2-3       Tbs      chopped fresh Italian parsley

¾         cup      freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus more for passing if you like

 

Bring 6 quarts of salted water to a boil in an 8-quart pot over high heat.

 

Pour the tomatoes and their liquid into the work bowl of a food processor. Using quick on/off pulses, process the tomatoes just until they are finely chopped. (Longer processing will aerate the tomatoes, turning them pink.)

 

Stir the penne into the boiling water. Bring the water back to a boil, stirring frequently. Cook the pasta, semi-covered, stirring occasionally, until done, 8 to 10 minutes.

 

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Whack the garlic cloves with the side of a knife and add them to the hot oil. Cook, shaking the skillet, until the garlic is lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Lower the work bowl with the tomatoes close to the skillet and carefully — they will splatter — slide the tomatoes into the pan. Bring to a boil, season lightly with salt and generously with crushed red pepper, and boil 2 minutes. Pour in the vodka, lower the heat so the sauce is at a lively simmer, and simmer until the pasta is ready.

 

Just before the pasta is done, fish the garlic cloves out of the sauce and pour in the cream. Add the 2 Tbs butter or oil, if using, and swirl the skillet to incorporate into the sauce. If the skillet is large enough to accommodate the sauce and pasta, fish the pasta out of the boiling water with a large wire skimmer and drop it directly into the sauce in the skillet. If not, drain the pasta, return it to the pot, and pour in the sauce. Bring the sauce and pasta to a boil, stirring to coat the pasta with sauce. Check the seasoning, adding salt and red pepper if necessary. Sprinkle the parsley over the pasta and boil until the sauce is reduced enough to cling to the pasta.

 

Remove the pot from the heat, sprinkle 3/4 cup of the cheese over the pasta, and toss to mix. Serve immediately, passing additional cheese if you like.

 

 

Makes 6 servings.

 

 

 



Penne with Tomato, Bacon And Cheese Sauce

 

This rich, slightly smoky sauce is cooked for only ten minutes.

 

6          slices    bacon, chopped

6          large    garlic cloves, finely chopped

½         cup      dry red wine

1          can       28-oz diced tomatoes in juice

1          Tbs      tomato paste

1 ½      tsp       dried oregano

¼         tsp       dried crushed red pepper

4          Tbs      chopped fresh Italian parsley

 

1 lb      penne

 

1/2 to 3/4 cup crumbled blue cheese, feta cheese or coarsely grated Parmesan cheese

 

Sauté bacon in heavy large saucepan over medium heat until crisp. Spoon off all but 4 Tbs drippings from pan. Add garlic to pan and stir 30 seconds. Add wine and scrape up any browned bits. Add tomatoes with juices, tomato paste, oregano and crushed red pepper. Simmer until sauce thickens slightly, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Mix in 2 Tbs parsley.

 

Meanwhile, cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup cooking water.

 

Return pasta to pot. Add sauce. Toss over medium heat until sauce coats pasta, adding reserved cooking water by tablespoonfuls if mixture is dry. Mix in cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl. Sprinkle with remaining 2 Tbs parsley.

 

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

 

 

 


Provencal Oven-Roasted Tomato Sauce

 

Freeze some of this sauce now and treat yourself to a burst of summer one cold, wintry day.

 

olive oil for brushing pans

1          head    garlic

4          lbs        vine-ripened red tomatoes (about 10 medium)

1          Tbs      fresh rosemary leaves

1          Tbs      fresh thyme leaves

3          Tbs      fresh orange juice, or to taste

 

Preheat oven to 450 °F. and lightly brush 2 shallow baking pans with oil.

 

Separate garlic head into cloves, discarding loose papery outer skin but keeping skin intact on cloves, and wrap in foil, crimping seams to seal tightly. Cut tomatoes into 1/2-inch-thick slices and arrange in one layer in baking pans. Sprinkle 2 tsp each of rosemary and thyme evenly over tomatoes and season with salt and pepper.

 

Put foil-wrapped garlic in one of baking pans with tomatoes and roast garlic and tomatoes in upper and lower thirds of oven, switching position of pans halfway through roasting, about 35 minutes total, or until garlic is tender and tomatoes are slightly charred. Unwrap garlic and cool slightly. Peel skins from each clove and force pulp with warm tomatoes and herbs through a food mill fitted with small disk into a bowl.

 

Finely chop remaining tsp rosemary and remaining tsp thyme and stir into sauce with orange juice. Season sauce with salt and pepper and reheat if necessary. Sauce keeps, covered and chilled, 4 days or, frozen, 4 months. Reheat sauce over low heat and re-season with orange juice, salt, and pepper.

 

Makes about 3 cups, enough for 1 pound pasta.

 

 

 

 


Roasted Garlic

 

Preheat the oven to 375 °F. Cut the top off of each of two garlic bulb, slicing into the points of the cloves. Place them cut side up on a piece of foil. Drizzle with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Wrap the foil up around the bulbs and bake for 45 to 60 minutes, till they release their perfume. Open the foil and test for doneness. The cloves should squeeze softly when pinched. Bake a little longer if they seem to need it. Roasted garlic keeps for several days in the fridge. Makes 2 bulbs.

 

 

 

 


Smoked Sausage and Black-Eyed Peas

 

1          lb         smoked sausage

1          cup      chopped yellow onion (1 medium)

½         tsp       salt

¼         tsp       cayenne

4          cloves  garlic

5          sprigs   fresh thyme

4          bay      leaves

3          tsp       finely chopped parsley

8          cups     chicken stock

1          lb         black-eyed peas

1          Tbs      minced garlic

6          x          cornbread muffins

1          Tbs      chopped green onions

 

In a large pot, over medium heat, render the sausage for 5 minutes. Stir in the onions, salt, cayenne, garlic, bay leaves, thyme and parsley. Sauté for 5 minutes, or until the onions are wilted. Stir in the chicken stock, peas and garlic. Bring the liquid up to a simmer and cook for 1 1/2 hours, or until the peas are tender. Spoon the peas and sausage in the center of a shallow bowl. Garnish with green onions. Serve with cornbread muffins.

 

Yield: 8 to 10 servings

 

 


Spaghetti alla Carbonara

 

A truly authentic Italian dish (although the purists leave out the cream at the end), the heat of the spaghetti and the bacon or pancetta oil cooks the egg right before serving.  Rich and rustic, this is one that sticks to the ribs.

 

1          lb         dry spaghetti

2          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

1          lb         pancetta or slab bacon, cubed or sliced into small strips

4          cloves  garlic, finely chopped

6          x          eggs, at room temperature

½         cup      heavy cream, at room temperature

1 ¼      cup      freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus more for serving

Freshly ground black pepper

1          hndful fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped

 

In a large pot, boil 6 quarts of salted boiling water. Add pasta and cook until al dente, about 8 to 10 minutes.  Prepare the sauce while the pasta is cooking to ensure that the spaghetti will be hot and ready when the sauce is finished; it is very important that the pasta is hot when adding the egg mixture, so that the heat of the pasta cooks the raw eggs in the sauce.

 

Heat a large sauté pan, until hot. Add pancetta and sauté until golden brown and crispy, about 5 minutes. Season with black pepper and remove pan from heat.

In a medium bowl, beat the eggs and cream. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in Parmesan, reserving 2 Tbs for garnish.

 

Drain pasta in a colander. Do not rinse with water; you want to retain the pasta's natural starches so that the sauce will stick. While the pasta is still hot, return it back to the pot. Add the browned pancetta and mix well, for about 1 minute to coat the strands in the bacon fat.  Add the cream mixture and coat the pasta completely, whisking quickly until the eggs thicken, but do not scramble (this is done off the heat to ensure this does not happen.). It's important to work quickly while the pasta is still warm so that the cream mixture will cook, but not curdle.  Season the carbonara with several turns of freshly ground black pepper and taste for salt.  Add remaining Parmesan and chopped parsley.

 

Mound the spaghetti carbonara into warm serving bowls and garnish with chopped parsley. Pass more cheese around the table.

 


Spaghetti with Olives and Tomato Sauce

 

1          lb         dried spaghetti

¼         cup      olive oil

1 ¼      cups     mixed olives, pitted and halved

½         Tbs      red pepper flakes, plus more if desired

3          cups     tomato sauce, recipe follows

½         cup      grated Parmesan

½         cup      basil leaves, shredded

 

In a large pot, bring 6 quarts of salted water to a boil. When water comes to a boil, add pasta, stirring constantly for the first minute to help prevent spaghetti from sticking together. Cook until al dente, about 8 to 10 minutes.

In a large Sauté pan, heat oil. When almost smoking, add olives and red pepper flakes. Sauté for 3 minutes over medium high heat. Reduce heat to low and carefully pour in tomato sauce and simmer for 10 minutes.

 

Drain pasta in a colander, reserving 1/4 cup pasta water. Add pasta to the sauce and toss to coat completely. Add pasta water if you need to thin out the sauce a bit. Plate pasta and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and basil.

 

 

Simple Tomato Sauce:

1/2       cup      extra-virgin olive oil

1          small    onion, chopped

2          cloves garlic, chopped

1          stalk     celery, chopped

1          x          carrot, chopped

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

2          32-oz   cans crushed tomatoes

2          x          dried bay leaves

4          Tbs      unsalted butter, optional

 

In a large casserole pot, heat oil over medium high heat. Add onion and garlic and Sauté until soft and translucent, about 5 to 10 minutes. Add celery and carrots and season with salt and pepper. Sauté until all the vegetables are soft, about 5 to 10 minutes. Add tomatoes and bay leaves and simmer uncovered on low heat for 1 hour or until thick. Remove bay leaves and check for seasoning. If sauce still tastes acidic, add unsalted butter, 1 Tbs at a time to round out the flavors.

Add 1/2 the tomato sauce into the bowl of a food processor. Process until smooth. Continue with remaining tomato sauce.

 

If not using all the sauce, allow it to cool completely and pour 1 to 2 cup portions into freezer plastic bags. This will freeze up to 6 months.


Spicy Sausage and Gorgonzola Pizza

 

Uncork a bottle of hearty Chianti to go with the great Italian flavors in this new twist on a traditional tomato-sauced pizza.

3 Italian hot sausages (about 12 oz), casings removed

 

1          10-oz   purchased fully baked thin pizza crust

1 ¼      cups     purchased refrigerated marinara sauce

1 ¼      cups     grated mozzarella cheese (about 5 oz)

½         cup      thinly sliced fresh basil leaves

1          cup      crumbled Gorgonzola cheese (about 4 oz)

¼         cup      pitted Kalamata olives or other brine-cured black olives, halved

4          x          thin rounds green bell pepper, halved

 

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 425 °F. Sauté sausage in large skillet over medium-high heat until just cooked through, breaking into 1/2-inch pieces with back of spoon, about 10 minutes. Drain off fat; set sausage aside.

 

Place pizza crust on rimless baking sheet. Leaving 3/4-inch plain border, spread 1 cup sauce over crust. Top with 3/4 cup mozzarella, 3/4 of basil, sausage, 1/2 cup Gorgonzola, olives, 1/2 cup mozzarella, bell pepper and 1/2 cup Gorgonzola. Drizzle remaining 1/4 cup sauce over. Bake pizza until crust is crisp and topping is heated through, about 13 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining basil.

 

Makes 6 servings.

 

 

 

 

 


Tagliatelle Bolognese

 

2          oz        dried porcini mushrooms, wiped of grit

2          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

¼         lb         pancetta or slab bacon, finely chopped

1          med     onion, finely chopped

2          x          celery stalks, finely chopped

2          x          carrots, finely chopped

5          cloves  garlic, minced

4          x          fresh thyme sprigs, leaves stripped from the stem

2          x          fresh oregano sprigs, leaves stripped from the stem

1          x          fresh rosemary sprig, needles stripped from the stem

2          x          bay leaves

1          lb         ground pork

1          lb         ground beef

1          cup      milk

1          can       28-oz whole peeled tomatoes, hand-crushed

2          cups     dry red wine

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1          lb         dry tagiatelle pasta

1          hndful fresh basil, hand-torn, for garnish

Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, for serving

 

Reconstitute the mushrooms in boiling water for 20 minutes until tender, drain and coarsely chop.

In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium flame. Add the pancetta and sauté for 2 minutes to render out the fat. Add the porcinis, onion, celery, carrots, and garlic; stirring to combine. Toss in the thyme, oregano, rosemary, and bay leaves. Cook for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring, until the vegetables are very tender but not browned.

 

Raise the heat a bit and add the ground pork and beef; brown until the meat is no longer pink, breaking up the clumps with a wooden spoon. Add the milk and simmer until the liquid is evaporated, about 10 minutes. Carefully pour in the tomatoes and wine; season with salt and pepper. Bring the sauce to a boil, then lower the heat and cover. Slowly simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, stirring now and then, until the sauce is very thick. Taste again for salt and pepper.

 

When you are ready to serve, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add the pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until tender yet firm (as they say in Italian "al dente.") Drain the pasta well and toss with the Bolognese sauce. Shower with basil and pass grated cheese around the table.

 


Tricolor Boboli Pizzas

 

Red peppers are teamed with onions, toasted pine nuts, fresh oregano and creamy goat cheese in these luscious savory pies. Purchased Boboli cheese pizza crusts make them a snap to prepare. You'll find them in the bread section, specialty food aisle or frozen food section at the supermarket.

¼         cup      olive oil

2          large    red onions, sliced

2          large    red bell peppers, thinly sliced

 

 

2          x          1-pound Boboli (baked cheese pizza crusts)

¾         cup      olive paste (olivada)*

½         lb         soft mild goat cheese (such as Montrachet), crumbled

½         cup      chopped fresh oregano

½         cup      toasted pine nuts (about 3 oz)

 

Heat olive oil in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add sliced red onions and sliced red bell peppers and sauté until beginning to brown, stirring frequently, about 10 minutes. (Can be prepared 4 hours ahead. Let onion mixture stand at room temperature.)

 

Preheat oven to 450 °F. Place Boboli on pizza pans or cookie sheets. Spread each Boboli with half of olive paste. Top each with half of onion mixture. Sprinkle with crumbled goat cheese. Bake until cheese softens, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven. Sprinkle with chopped fresh oregano and toasted pine nuts. Cut pizzas into wedges and serve.

 

*An olive spread available at Italian markets and specialty foods stores. If unavailable, use pureed, pitted, brine-cured black olives.

 

Serves 6.

 

 

 


"Two Thumbs Up" Pizza (with Caramelized Onions and Gorgonzola Cheese)

 

3          Tbs      olive oil

5          cups     coarsely chopped red onions

4          cups     thinly sliced leeks (about 4; white and pale green parts only)

2/3       cup      dry red wine

1/3       cup      balsamic vinegar

1/3       cup      very finely chopped prosciutto (about 2 oz)

2          Tbs      finely chopped fresh basil

¼         tsp       cayenne pepper

 

2          x          0-oz fully baked thin pizza crusts

8          oz        Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

1          Tbs      minced fresh rosemary

 

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add onions and leeks and sauté until tender, about 20 minutes. Add wine and vinegar. Cook until most of liquid evaporates and onions are brown, stirring frequently, about 20 minutes longer. Mix in prosciutto, basil and cayenne. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

 

Preheat oven to 450 °F. Place pizza crusts on 2 large baking sheets. Spoon onion mixture evenly atop crusts, leaving 1-inch border around edges. Sprinkle cheese and rosemary over onions.

 

Bake pizzas until cheese melts and begins to brown and crusts are crisp and golden, about 12 minutes. Cool on baking sheets 5 minutes. Cut into slices and serve.

 

Makes 2 pizzas.

 

 

 


Wild Mushroom Pizza with Garlic Confit and Bacon

 

Slow-cooked garlic combines with bacon and mushrooms to give this first-course pizza a smoky, woodsy and oh-so-satisfying flavor. Serve a crisp green salad alongside.

 

3          slices    bacon, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces

2          Tbs      olive oil

½         cup      halved peeled large garlic cloves (about 2 1/2 oz)

12        oz        assorted fresh wild mushrooms, thinly sliced

½         x          red bell pepper, cut into matchstick-size strips

 

1 10-oz purchased fully baked thin pizza crust

1 cup (packed) mixed shredded Italian cheeses (about 4 oz)

 

Cook bacon in large skillet over medium heat until golden, about 10 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towels. Pour off drippings from skillet. Add oil and garlic to skillet. Cover and cook over low heat until garlic is golden, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Add mushrooms and bell pepper; cover and cook over high heat until vegetables are tender, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 8 hours ahead; chill bacon and vegetables.)

 

Preheat oven to 450 °F. Place pizza crust on baking sheet. Sprinkle cheeses, then vegetable mixture and bacon over crust. Bake until cheeses melt, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven. Let stand 2 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve.

 

Makes 4 servings.

 

 

 

 

 


Vegetables and Side Dishes

 

                                                                            

 

Artichoke and Mushroom Frittata

 

This lovely frittata can be served warm or at room temperature.

4          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil, divided
8          x          baby artichokes, trimmed, halved
2          cloves  garlic, chopped
6          large    eggs
4          Tbs      coarsely grated sharp cheddar cheese, divided
4          oz        fresh crimini (baby bella) mushrooms, thinly sliced

Heat 2 Tbs oil in medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add artichokes to skillet; sprinkle with salt and pepper and sauté until beginning to brown around edges, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and 1/2 cup water, reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until artichokes are tender when base is pierced with small sharp knife, about 10 minutes. Uncover and boil until any liquid remaining in skillet evaporates. Remove from heat.

Preheat broiler. Whisk eggs and 2 Tbs cheese in large bowl. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat 2 Tbs oil in medium nonstick ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms; sauté until browned, about 5 minutes. Pat artichokes dry; add to skillet and stir 2 minutes. Add eggs; stir to blend. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook until eggs are almost set, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining 2 Tbs cheese.

Transfer frittata to broiler. Broil just until set in center, about 1 minute. Using rubber spatula, loosen edges of frittata and slide out onto platter. Serve warm or at room temperature.

 


Artichoke Fritters

 

Vegetable oil

1          18-oz   can artichoke hearts, drained

2          cloves  garlic, minced

3          x          scallions, chopped

¼         cup      milk

1          large    egg, beaten

1          tsp       lemon zest

2          tsp       lemon juice

1          cup      all-purpose flour

¾         tsp       baking powder

1          tsp       salt

½         tsp       pepper

½         x          lemon, to squeeze over fritters

1          x          Kosher salt, to sprinkle

Lemon Cream, recipe follows, optional

 

Pour 3 inches of vegetable oil into a heavy bottomed pot and place over medium heat until a bread cube placed in the oil browns within 1 minute.

Coarsely chop the artichokes (or alternatively crush by hand) and put them in a large mixing bowl. Add the garlic and scallions, milk, egg, lemon zest and lemon juice. Mix the flour, baking powder, salt and pepper in a separate bowl and quickly mix the dry ingredients into the artichoke mix. Drop the fritters by the heaping tablespoonful into the hot oil and fry until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Work in batches until all the batter is used. Keep warm in a low oven until ready to serve. Immediately before serving, squeeze a little fresh lemon juice over all and hit with a bit of kosher salt. Serve with a dollop of Lemon Cream on top, if desired.

 

Lemon Cream:

1 cup sour cream

1 lemon, juiced

1 teaspoon kosher salt

 

Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl. Refrigerate until ready to serve.


 

Artichokes Roman Style: Carciofi alla Romana

 

1          Tbs      chopped fresh parsley

3          Tbs      chopped fresh mint

2          cloves  garlic, finely chopped

Salt, to taste

1          Tbs      plus 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

6          x          artichokes, halved and trimmed of coarse (but not inner) leaves,

choke removed, held in acidulated water

½         cup      dry white wine

¾         cup      boiling water

 

In a small bowl, combine the parsley, mint, garlic, salt and 1 Tbs olive oil. In the cavity of the artichoke from which the choke was removed, place 1 tsp of the herb mixture. Repeat this procedure with the remaining chokes. Arrange all chokes in a deep pan that keeps them close together, in other words, one that doesn’t give them room to fall over. Add the wine, boiling water, remaining oil and a pinch of salt. Cover and simmer on the stovetop 1 hour. Serve hot or at room temperature.

 


Artichokes Stuffed with Smashed Potatoes and Browned Garlic

 

4          large    artichokes

1-1/2    lbs        baking potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

2          Tbs      olive oil

6          cloves  garlic, minced

¼         cup      dry sherry

¾         cup      (3 oz) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

½         cup      chopped fresh basil

½         tsp       salt

½         tsp       pepper

1          Tbs      shredded fresh Parmesan cheese

Cooking spray

Fresh parsley sprigs (optional)

 

Working with 1 artichoke at a time, cut off stem to the base. Remove bottom leaves and tough outer leaves, leaving tender heart and bottom; trim about 2 inches from the top of artichoke. Steam artichokes, covered, 20 minutes; cool to room temperature. Gently spread leaves; remove fuzzy thistle from bottom with a spoon.

 

Preheat oven to 375&176;.

 

Place potatoes in a saucepan; cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Simmer 12 minutes or until tender; drain. Beat at medium speed of a mixer or with a potato masher until coarsely mashed.

 

Heat oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic; sauté 2 minutes or until golden. Remove from heat; add sherry, scraping skillet to loosen browned bits. Add sherry mixture, mozzarella, basil, salt, and pepper to potatoes.

 

Stuff about 1 cup potato mixture into each artichoke. Sprinkle with Parmesan. Place stuffed artichokes in an 8-inch square baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake at 375&176; for 20 minutes or until artichokes are tender. Garnish with parsley, if desired.

 

4 servings

 

 

 

 


Baked Artichoke Hearts

 

1          can       artichoke hearts

1          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan, plus a drizzle to coat baking dish

¼         x          ripe lemon

1          Tbs      butter

3          cloves  garlic, chopped

6          x          flat anchovy fillets

1          cup      Italian style bread crumbs, 3 handfuls

¼         cup      chopped flat leaf parsley

¼         cup      grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, a couple of handfuls

Coarse black pepper

 

Preheat oven to 400 °F.

Turn drained artichokes upside down to get all the liquid out. Halve artichoke hearts, lengthwise. Drizzle a small casserole dish with a little extra-virgin olive oil, and spread it around the dish with a pastry brush. Arrange the halved artichoke hearts with tops up, bottoms down, in a layered pattern in the dish. Squeeze the juice of 1/4 lemon over the hearts.

 

Preheat a small nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add oil and butter to the skillet. When butter melts into oil, add garlic and anchovies. Using the back of a wooden spoon, work anchovies into oil as they break up. When anchovies have dissolved into oil, add bread crumbs to the pan and lightly toast, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add parsley, cheese and black pepper, stir to combine and remove pan from heat. Top artichokes with an even layer of bread topping and set in the middle of oven. Bake 10 minutes until artichokes are warm and topping is deep golden brown in color.

 

 

 


Bacon Potatoes Au Gratin

 

½         lb         bacon

2          cloves  garlic

4          lbs        potatoes (russets or Yukon golds), peeled and sliced

1          tsp       fresh chopped thyme leaves

1          Tbs      sea salt or kosher salt

1          tsp       fresh cracked black pepper

2 ½      cups     heavy cream

 

Potatoes au gratin's soft layers of creamy potatoes topped with a golden, slightly crispy crust, embodies the definition of comfort food, especially with a couple layers of bacon nestled in between the potatoes. The dish isn't complicated, but it does benefit from attention to detail and quality ingredients. One key to the preparation of this recipe: While baking, break the crust the cream forms a few times. This allows the cream and potatoes to slowly cook into one another, perfectly softening the layers of potato, while preventing the top layer from overcooking. After the third break, you should notice a difference in consistency of the cream and it will appear slightly more translucent, almost as if the cream was combined with melted butter.

 

Prep tip: It helps to take a slice or two off the bottom of the potatoes before slicing the rest of it. It gives the potato a flat surface, or a “foot”, to lay on as you slice.

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.    Heat a saute pan over medium heat. Cook bacon until very lightly golden on each side. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels. Set aside.

 

Slightly crush garlic cloves to open it up. Rub garlic over inside of 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

 

Put sliced potatoes in a large bowl. Toss with thyme, salt and pepper until evenly coated. Layer 1/3 of potatoes in bottom of baking dish. Cover with a single layer of bacon. Layer another 1/3 of potatoes, another layer of bacon, then final layer of potatoes. Pour cream over potatoes. (Should be enough cream than when potatoes are pressed down on, cream rises above potatoes.) Place dish on sheet pan and put in oven. Bake for 30 minutes, pull out of oven and with the back of a large wooden spoon, break the crust the cream is starting to form. Return to oven. Bake for another 20 minutes and repeat crust breaking.

 

Bake for another 20 minutes, then break the crust again. After third crust break, return to oven and continue to bake for another 20 minutes or until top is golden brown.

 

It is best to allow it to cool for about 15 minutes before serving, since it will be very hot coming out of the oven and will hold its heat quite well.

 


Baked Jerusalem Artichokes with Bread Crumbs, Thyme & Lemon

 

1/2       pint      crème fraiche or double cream

1          each     lemon, juiced

2          cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped

1          each     good handful fresh thyme, picked and chopped

1 to 2   hndful grated Parmesan cheese

3          hndful Jerusalem artichokes, peeled and sliced as thick as a pencil

2          good handfuls stale bread crumbs

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Olive oil

 

Preheat your oven to 230C/450F.Gas 8. In a bowl mix together your crème fraiche, lemon juice, garlic, half the thyme and most of the Parmesan, and season well to taste. Thin out with around 6 to 8 Tbs of water and throw in the sliced Jerusalem artichokes. Mix well and place everything in an ovenproof baking dish. Cover with tin foil and bake for 35 minutes.

 

Mix the bread crumbs, the remaining thyme and some salt and pepper with a touch of olive oil. Remove the artichokes from the oven, discard the foil and sprinkle the remaining Parmesan over the top. Then sprinkle the flavored bread crumbs over the Parmesan. Use up all the bread crumbs. Bake in the oven for about15 minutes until the bread crumbs are golden. If you’re in a pokey kind of mood you can poke the artichokes about a bit so some of the bread crumbs fall underneath them. This makes it look more rustic instead of like a crumble.

 

 


Baked Half-Naked Red/Golden Potatoes

 

1          x          Mini Red potatoes and/or Mini Golden potatoes (small as you can find)

1          x          Olive Oil

1          x          Kosher Salt and Pepper to taste

 

Preheat your oven to 450F.

 

Take a potato peeler and peel off a strip around each potato, leaving a top and a bottom of peel on (about a third each).  Boil potatoes (enough for 5-7 per person) until tender.

 

Place them on a large cake sheet or cookie sheet with raised edges, douse them with olive oil, salt and freshly ground pepper.  Alternately, place the same in a plastic bag and shake them around until they are all coated.  Bake, shaking occasionally to expose other sides, until sizzling and browning, about 30-40 minutes.

 

 

 

 


Baked Smashed Red/Golden Potatoes

 

1          x          Mini Red potatoes and/or Mini Golden potatoes (small as you can find),

                        5 – 7 per person

1          x          Olive Oil

1          x          Kosher Salt and Pepper to taste

 

Preheat your oven to 450F.

 

Place the potatoes into the water and bring to a boil.  Boil potatoes until fork tender, about 15 minutes after the water starts boiling.

 

While still warm, place them on a kitchen towel, and using another towel and the palm of your hand, flatten them into patties.  This can be done hours ahead to save time while fixing the rest of dinner.

 

Placing patties on a large cake sheet or cookie sheet with raised edges, douse them with olive oil, salt and freshly ground pepper.  Bake at 400 until sizzling and starting to brown on the edges and top, about 15 minutes, the kick on the broiler for another 3-4 minutes to finish them off.

 

These can be served as an appetizer or a side dish.  Try a dish of sour cream and chives for a topping.

 

 

 

 

 


Beg for More Divine Potato Purses

 

3          x          sweet potatoes

2          x          egg yolks

½         cup      all-purpose flour

3          tsp       ground cinnamon

1          tsp       salt

Phyllo dough

Butter, for brushing phyllo

Oil, for deep frying

Caramel Sauce, recipe follows

Powdered sugar, for garnish

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F.

 

Clean the potatoes under cold running water. Prick them with a fork, and place on a baking dish and bake for 1 hour, or until a knife slides through nice and clean without any resistance. Remove skins, they should just slip right off. Put the potatoes through a food mill.

 

Put potatoes in a bowl and add egg yolks, flour, cinnamon, and salt and mix until combined. Be careful not to over-work the dough. Pinch off Tbs of dough and roll into balls.

 

Preheat a fryer or a deep pot halfway filled with oil to 350 °F.

 

Take 1 sheet of phyllo dough and cut into 3-inch circles. Brush with butter and place a ball of sweet potato dough in the center and pinch into a purse at the top. Continue to do this using more phyllo until you have used all of the potato dough.

 

Place into hot oil to deep fry to a golden brown color. Place in a bowl of caramel sauce and dust with powdered sugar.

 

 

Caramel Sauce:

2          cups     sugar

¼         cup      water

4          oz        unsalted butter

¼         cup      cream

 

Combine the sugar and water in a saucepan. Stir over low heat until melted. Turn up the heat to medium-high and cook until caramel colored. Take off the heat and add butter and cream. Be careful, caramel may splatter. Set aside to cool.

 

 


BLT Mashed Potatoes

 

2 ½      lbs        russet potatoes, peeled, diced into 2” cubes

¼         lb         bacon, diced

2          cups     leeks (white part only), sliced thinly

4          Tbs      unsalted butter, melted

½         cup      half and half, warmed

4          oz        cream cheese

2          Tbs      sun-dried tomatoes in oil, minced

1          tsp       kosher salt

1/8       tsp       cayenne

2          Tbs      chopped fresh chives

 

Cook potatoes in salted water 15-20 minutes, or until tender.

 

Sauté bacon until crisp; remove.  Pour off all but 2T drippings.  Sauté leeks in drippings, then stir in bacon.

 

Drain potatoes, then return them to pan.  Dry briefly over medium heat, stirring constantly.  Mash potatoes and fold in all ingredients.

 

 


Boiled and Popped Yukon Gold Potatoes – Jacques Pepin

 

3          lbs        Mini Golden Yukon potatoes (small as you can find)

1          x          Kosher Salt and Pepper to taste

2 ½      cups     Chicken Stock

3          Tbs      Butter

2-3       Tbs      Freshly chopped parsley

 

Place the potatoes in a deep skillet and add salt and pepper, to taste.  Cover potatoes halfway with chicken stock, about 3 cups, add the butter and cover skillet with a lid.  Cook the potatoes in the stock until almost tender, about 15-18 minutes, depending on the size of the potatoes.  Remove the lid and allow the remaining stock to evaporate, about another 5 minutes.  Once the stock has evaporated, pop each potato using a ladle or large spoon, creating a small crack in each, but do not smash.  Allow the potatoes to brown on each side, another 5 minutes, and re-season with salt and pepper, if necessary or desired.  Remove the browned potatoes from the skillet and place onto a serving platter, garnished with the parsley.

 


Bombay Potatoes

 

3          Tbs      sunflower oil

1          tsp       mustard seeds

1          Pinch   ground cumin

1          tsp       turmeric

1          tsp       ground coriander

1          tsp       garam masala

1          tsp       chili powder

1          knob    fresh ginger, peeled and grated

4          knobs   butter

6          large    potatoes, peeled, parboiled and cut into cubes

4          x          tomatoes, cores removed and flesh diced

Handful fresh coriander, roughly chopped

 

Heat the oil in a pan and fry the spices for a few minutes. Add the butter, then the potatoes making sure they are completely coated in the spicy mixture. Cook for about 10 to 15 minutes, then stir in the tomatoes and the coriander.

 

 


Bourbon Pecan Smashed Sweet Potatoes

 

Don’t overdo on the bourbon or OJ.  You still want the taste of the Sweet Potatoes to come out and not be overpowered by the other spices.

 

3          med     sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks

3          Tbs      butter, cut into small pieces

½         cup      chopped pecans, a couple of handfuls

3          Tbs      brown sugar

2          oz        bourbon

½         cup      orange juice

¼ - ½   tsp       freshly grated nutmeg

Salt and pepper

 

Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Add sweet potatoes and cook 12 to 15 minutes until very tender. Drain sweet potatoes in a colander. Return pan to medium heat. Add butter to the pan. When butter melts, add nuts and toast for 2 minutes. Add sugar and let it bubble. Add bourbon and cook out alcohol, 1 minute. Add orange juice and the cooked sweet potatoes. Smash with a masher and season the sweet potatoes with nutmeg, salt and pepper.

 


Butternut Squash Soufflé

 

3          cups     Butternut squash (about 1 ½ lbs, peeled, seeded, cut into ¾ inch cubes)

2          Tbs      brown sugar

¼         cup      maple syrup

1          tsp       salt

3          Tbs      cornstarch

1          stick     melted butter

1          cup      cream

4          x          egg yolks

4          x          egg whites and a pinch of salt

 

Cook squash until soft, then mash.  To the mashed squash, add the sugar, syrup, salt and cornstarch, mix until smooth.  Add the butter, cream and egg yolks and mix until smooth.  Beat the egg whites to soft beaks and fold into the mixture.  Bake in a buttered soufflé dish at 350 °F for about an hour, until it is set and lightly browned, checking on it after about 45 minutes.

 


Butternut Squash with Brown Butter

 

The easiest way to peel butternut squash is with a vegetable peeler, the harp shaped variety works particularly well.

 

4          Tbs      unsalted butter

1          x          Butternut squash (about 1 ½ lbs, peeled, seeded, cut into ¾ inch cubes.

½         cup      low sodium canned chicken broth

¼         cup      water

2-3       Tbs      dark brown sugar

1          x          course salt and freshly ground pepper

 

Heat butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat until golden brown, but make sure you have enough to brown the squash.  Add squash, sauté, stirring occasionally until golden brown and fork tender, about 15 minutes.

 

Add chicken broth, the water, and brown sugar, cook until liquid has evaporated and squash is nicely caramelized, about 20 minutes.  Remove from heat, and season with salt and pepper.

 


Cajun Oven Fries

 

These types of fries can be spiced up with just about anything – rosemary, garlic, pre-made rubs and spices you probably already have in your pantry.  This is just one simple idea to start you off.

 

4          med     thin-skinned white potatoes

3-4       Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

2          Tbs      cayenne pepper sauce

1          tsp       (1/3 handful) ground thyme or poultry seasoning

1          tsp       (1/3 handful) sweet paprika

1          tsp       (1/3 handful) ground cumin

Coarse salt and black pepper

 

Preheat oven to 450 °F.

Cut potatoes into wedges. In a large bowl, combine oil, hot sauce, thyme, paprika, and cumin. Toss potatoes in dressing and spread out in a single layer on a nonstick cookie sheet. Season wedges with salt and pepper and roast for 20 minutes, turning once.


Carrots And Brown Sugar

 

Simple but nice.

 

1          lb         baby carrots or 2-3 large carrots, cut into small pieces (1 inch long)

3          Tbs      butter

¼         cup      brown sugar

 

Steam carrots until just done, 8-10 minutes.  Dump water and, in the same pan, add the butter and brown sugar to the carrots.  Keep on a low heat for another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.


Carrots Braised in Marsala Wine

 

For this simple dish to taste extraordinary, you need the best-quality Italian dry Marsala..

 

4          Tbs      unsalted butter

1 ¼      lbs        carrots, peeled and cut into large matchsticks or 1/4-inch-thick slices
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Small grating of fresh nutmeg
½         tsp       sugar

½         cup      dry Marsala

 

Choose a straight-sided sauté pan that has a tight-fitting lid and is just large enough to hold the vegetables in one or two layers. A pan that is too large will allow the liquid to evaporate too quickly; if it is too small, the vegetables will be piled too high to braise evenly.

 

Melt the butter over moderate heat, so that it melts without taking on any color. Stir the carrots into the pan, and season with salt and pepper, nutmeg, and sugar. Turn the carrots over several times with a heatproof rubber spatula or wooden spatula or spoon to coat them well with the butter and seasonings. Cook gently — do not fry — stirring often, for about 2 minutes, to release the vegetable's flavor, and then pour in the Marsala. Bring to a quick boil, and then adjust the heat so the carrots just barely simmer. Cover the pan tightly and braise, shaking it well from time to time, for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the carrots are tender. Check the pan occasionally, and if the liquid has evaporated before the carrots are cooked, add small amounts of hot water. When the carrots are tender, there should be only enough liquid left just to coat them. If there is more, turn the heat to high and boil it off.


Cauliflower and Parsnip Hash Browns

 

½         head    cauliflower
2          small    parsnips, or 1 large parsnip
2          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil
1          tsp       kosher salt
4          cloves  garlic, coarsely chopped
¼         tsp       red pepper flakes

 

Slice the cauliflower lengthwise, about 1/8-inch thick. Save the little cauliflower "crumbs". Thinly slice the parsnips.

 

Heat 2 Tbs of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When hot, but not smoking, add the cauliflower slices and parsnip slices, spreading out into a single layer, if possible. Do not stir, but let the vegetables cook, undisturbed, until nicely browned on the bottom, about 3 minutes. Add the salt, reserved cauliflower crumbs, garlic, and red pepper flakes, and give the vegetables a gentle stir. Continue cooking, only stirring once or twice, until the vegetables are cooked through and nicely browned, about 5 minutes more. Serve hot.


Confit Onion and Black Mission Fig Tart

 

Figs and Onions???   Yes, this is actually very good, sweet and rich.  Give it a try.

 

Pie Crust

1          lb         All purpose flour

½         lb         unsalted butter

2          x          egg yolks

1          Tbs      white vinegar

1          pinch   salt

1          Tbs      ice water

 

12        large    white onions, cleaned, halved and sliced thin

1          Tbs      olive oil

6          sprigs   fresh thyme

2          fresh    bay leaves

1          x          salt and pepper to taste.

 

12        ripe      black mission figs

 

In a food processor, pulse flour, salt and butter until consistency of corn meal.  In a separate bowl mix egg yolk and vinegar.  Add the egg and vinegar to flour mixture and pulse for 15 seconds with ice water.  Turn the dough onto a board and bring together by hand.  Divide into two balls and smash flat with your hand and wrap in plastic.  Chill for 1 hour.  Roll out and blind.  Bake in a pie or tart shell.

 

In a heavy saucepan heat oil, add thyme, bay, salt and pepper over medium heat.  Cover tightly.  Stir every minute and cook about 1 ½ hours or until the onions are soft and rich brown in color.  Cool on a baking sheet, remove thyme and reserve.

 

Fill cooled blind baked tart shell with confit onions.  Slice the figs and arrange over onions.  Bake in a moderate oven (375 degrees) for 15 minutes to set filling.  Cool.

 

Cut bacon into ½ inch pieces and sauté until crispy (do not discard the rendered oil).  Directly in the sauté pan add vinegar, sugar and pepper to taste.  This is going to make a lot of noise and spatter a bit, so be ready.  Whisk in olive oil.  Season with salt if needed.  Serve warm or room temperature.

 

Cut a nice wedge of the tart.  Garnish with a good bit of baby frisee and dress with the vinaigrette to your taste.  This makes a great lunch or Sunday supper.  If you like blue cheese, crumble a little over the tip of a heartier winter dish.  A slightly chilled burgundy or pinot noir is a great complement to this tart.

 


Cranberries with Apricot

 

I know, cranberries for Thanksgiving.   But try this as an alternative to the standard canned jelloed clump and you will be very happy.

 

2          bags     fresh cranberries (24 oz. total)

1          cup      orange juice

1          cup      apricot jam

¾         cups     sugar

½         tsp       ginger

¼         lb         dried apricots, finely diced

 

Stir all the ingredients together in a large, heavy pot and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring, until the berries pop and the sauce starts to thicken – it will thicken much more as it cools – about 8 minutes.  Cool to room temperature, cover and chill.

 


Cuban Grilled Corn on the Cob with Queso Blanco and Lime

 

4          ears      corn

4          Tbs      (½ stick) butter, melted

½         Tbs      paprika

1          Tbs      chili powder

1          x          Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

½         cup      queso fresco, finely grated

½         bunch  cilantro, stemmed and roughly chopped

2          x          limes, cut into wedges

 

 

Soak corn, in its husk, in water for 1 to 2 hours.  Preheat grill to medium-high.

 

Carefully peel back the husks leaving them attached at the base and remove the silk.

 

In a medium bowl, combine the melted butter, paprika, chili powder, and season well with salt and pepper.  Using a pastry brush, brush the ears of corn with the butter mixture and place on a hot grill.

 

Be careful to leave the husks off the hottest part of the grill rack so that they do not start to burn.  Grill corn on all sides until well marked and tender, about 10 to 12 minutes.

 

Sprinkle with grated queso fresco and cilantro and serve with lime wedges.

 


Deep-Fried Baby Artichokes

 

One of Shelley’s favorites, unfortunately it is hard to come by the baby artichokes.  The prices of the large ones are usually outrageous the entire year, but these, when they are available, can be as low as 10 cents each.  Ask your grocer when they get them in, then use them in this and many other dishes in this book.

 

8          2 oz     baby artichokes, or two large artichokes, quartered

1          x          flour for dredging

2          large    eggs, beaten lightly

3          cups     fresh bread crumbs

1          x          combination olive oil and vegetable oil for deep frying

 

Stem artichokes even with their bases and remove and discard any hard outer leaves. In a large saucepan of boiling salted water blanch the artichokes for 6 minutes, or until just tender. Drain the artichokes and refresh under cold water. gently spread the leaves of the artichokes outward. Flatten with the side of a knife, being careful not to crack them, and pat dry. Dredge in flour and coat with eggs, letting excess drip off. Coat with bread crumbs. In deep fryer or heavy saucepan heat oil to 375 F. and fry artichokes, a few at a time, for 3 minutes, or until golden. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

 

 


Fried Okra

 

1          lb         okra

Buttermilk

½         cup      flour

½         cup      cornmeal

Essence, recipe in the Sauces and Rubs section

Oil, for frying

Salt and pepper

 

With a sharp knife, slice the okra into 1-inch slices. Season the okra with salt and pepper. Marinate the okra in buttermilk. Marinate for 30 minutes and drain. Place 1 quart of oil in a saucepan. Heat the oil. In a shallow dish, mix the flour and cornmeal together. Season the flour with Essence. Dredge the okra in the seasoned flour/cornmeal mixture, coating the okra completely. Fry the okra in the hot oil until golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes. Fry the okra in batches. Remove the okra from the oil and drain on a paper-lined plate. Season with salt and pepper.

 

 

 

 

 


Garlic Mashed Potatoes

 

4          lbs        red-skinned potatoes; peeled, cubed

9          cloves  garlic              

2          Tbs     margarine            

1          Tbs     rosemary; dried

⅔         cup                  chicken broth; fat-free

½         cup      Parmesan cheese; grated

1          each    salt and pepper to taste     

 

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  Add the potatoes and garlic and cook until both are very tender, about 30 minutes.  Drain.  Transfer the potatoes and the garlic to a large bowl.  Using an electric mixer, beat the potatoes and garlic.  Add the margarine and rosemary and beat until smooth. 

 

Gradually blend the chicken broth into the potato mixture.  Stir in the Parmesan cheese.  Season with salt and pepper.               

 


Green Bean Casserole

 

1 ½      Tbs      butter

3          Tbs      all purpose flour

1 ½      cups     milk

3-4       tsp       dry ranch-style salad dressing mix

½         tsp       white pepper

1          cup      chopped onion

2          cloves  garlic, minced

1 ½      cups     sliced fresh mushrooms

1 ¼      lbs        fresh green beans, cooked until crisp-tender

1          cup      fresh bread crumbs

 

To make white sauce, melt butter in small saucepan over low heat.  Stir in flour; cook 1 to 2 minutes, stirring constantly.  Using wire whisk, stir in milk; bring to a boil.  Cook, whisking constantly, 1 to 2 minutes or until thickened.  Stir in dressing mix and white pepper; set aside.

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.  Spray medium skillet with nonstick cooking spray; heat over medium-high heat.  Add onion and garlic; cook and stir 2 to 3 minutes or until tender.  Remove half of onion mixture; set aside.

 

Add mushrooms to onion mixture remaining in skillet and cook about 5 minutes or until mushrooms are tender.  Combine mushroom mixture, green beans and white sauce in 1 ½ quart casserole.  Combine bread crumbs with reserved onion mixture, sprinkle over casserole.  Bake, uncovered, until heated through, about 20 to 30 minutes.

 

 


Green Bean and Corn Casserole (Kristen’s)

 

1          can       French style green beans (drained)

1          can       shoe peg corn (drained)

1          can       cream of celery soup

½         cup      sour cream

½         cup      grated cheddar cheese

½         cup      finely chopped onions

1          pinch   salt

1          stick     butter

1          roll       crushed Ritz crackers

½         cup      slivered almonds

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F

Mix green beans and corn, put in creased casserole.

Mix soup, sour cream, cheddar cheese, onions and salt.  Spread over beans and corn.

Mix milted butter with crushed crackers and slivered almonds.

Spread on top of casserole and bake for 45 minutes uncovered.

 

 


Green Beans And Bacon

 

Simple but nice.

 

1          lb         green beans, cut into small long pieces

3          Tbs      butter

3          pieces  bacon, fried crisp and roughly chopped

 

Steam beans until just done, 8-10 minutes.  Dump water and, in the same pan, add the butter.  Keep on a low heat for another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add bacon just before serving.

 


Green Beans with Pancetta, Garlic & Herbs

 

A bit more complex than the last recipe, but more flavor complexity to balance out a stronger main course.

 

1          Tbs     olive oil            

4          oz                    pancetta, cut into ¼-inch dice 

3          med                 cloves garlic; chopped

½         lb         fresh green beans; trimmed

½         tsp      Kosher salt           

3          Tbs     flat leafed parsley; chopped

2          tsp      fresh rosemary; chopped

1          x          freshly ground black pepper - to taste

 

Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat until it shimmers.  Add the pancetta and cook, stirring frequently, until the fat is rendered and the pancetta is slightly crisped, 8 to 10 minutes.  Add the garlic and the beans and toss to coat with the oil.                  

 

Add enough water to just cover the beans.  Add the salt.  Simmer until the beans are fork tender and fully cooked (taste one to check) and the liquid has cooked down to a thick sauce, 25 to 30 minutes.  If the beans are tender but the sauce seems watery, boil it separately briefly to thicken.   Toss in the parsley and rosemary and season to taste with salt and pepper. 

 

 

 


Herb-Encased Potato Crisps

 

¼         cup      clarified butter

1          8-oz     russet potato, peeled

Assorted soft fresh herbs, such as tarragon, parsley, chervil, dill

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Herbed Goat Cheese, recipe follows

 

Preheat the oven to 400 °F.

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and brush with clarified butter. Using a mandoline or other mechanical slicer, slice the potato as thinly as possible to make potato chips. Working quickly to prevent discoloration, lay half on the prepared baking sheet. Top each with an herb leaf or small cluster of herbs. Lay another chip of the same size directly on top to seal the herb. Brush with clarified butter and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Top with a second sheet of parchment paper and fit a second baking sheet of the same size on top to press. Bake until the chips are crisp and golden, about 10 minutes.

 

Remove from the oven, uncover, and peel away the parchment paper. Remove with a thin spatula and place on a plate. Pipe a small amount of the herbed goat cheese next to the chips and garnish it with sprigs of fresh herbs.

 

 

Herbed Goat Cheese:

1          4-oz     log goat cheese

2          Tbs      sour cream

½         x          lemon, juiced

¼         cup      assorted soft fresh herbs, such as tarragon, parsley, chervil, dill

 

Place all ingredients in a food processor. Pulse until mixture is well combined. Place in a piping bag with a star tip. Refrigerate until ready to use.

 

 


Honey-Glazed Baby Carrots

 

1          lb         baby carrots, trimmed and peeled

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

2          Tbs      honey

 

In a steamer, set over boiling water, steam the carrots, covered, for 4 to 8 minutes, or until they are just tender. In a small skillet melt the butter with the honey over moderately low heat, add the carrots and salt and pepper to taste, and cook the carrots, tossing them, for 1 minute, or until they are well-coated with the glaze.

 

 

 


Jerusalem Artichokes and Potato au Gratin

 

A nice woodsy flavor, most people never have tried Jerusalem Artichokes (also called Sun Chokes).  This is a very nice introduction.

 

6          x          Jerusalem artichokes, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch slices (about 3/4 pound)

2          large    baking potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch slices (about 1 1/4 lbs)

Salt

Black pepper

Cayenne pepper

¼         cup      olive oil

1          Tbs      butter

½         cup      chopped onions

2          tsp       chopped garlic

1          cup      grated cheddar cheese

1          Tbs      flour

½         cup      milk

1          cup      dried fine bread crumbs

2          Tbs      chopped parsley

Essence, recipe in the Sauces and Rubs section

 

Preheat the oven to 400 °F.

 

Place the Jerusalem artichokes and potatoes in a mixing bowl and season with the salt, black pepper, and cayenne. Mix in 2 Tbs of the olive oil and toss to coat.

 

Butter the bottom and sides of a 2 quart baking dish. Put half of the artichoke-potato mixture in the bottom of the pan, then sprinkle with 1/4 cup of the chopped onions, 1 tsp of the chopped garlic, and 1/4 cup of the cheese and the flour. Top this with the remaining artichoke-potato mixture. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup onions, 1 tsp garlic, and 1/2 cup cheese. Pour the milk over the mixture.

 

In a bowl, mix together the remaining 2 Tbs olive oil with the bread crumbs, parsley and season with Essence. Spread this topping evenly over the mixture. Bake for 1 hour, or until the potatoes are tender.

 

 

 

 


Leek and Potato Gratin

 

2 ¼      lbs        (about 3 large) white/pale green parts of leek, washed, chopped

3          Tbs      unsalted butter

2          Tbs      all-purpose flour

2          cups     half-and-half, scalded

¼         cup      grated Parmesan plus 2 Tbs

¼         cup      grated Gruyere plus 2 Tbs

2          tsp       Dijon mustard, or to taste

Freshly grated nutmeg

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 ½      lbs        (3 medium-large) russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1-inch cubes

 

Preheat oven to 400 °F.

 

In a saucepan, cook the leeks in 2 Tbs of the butter over medium heat, stirring, until they are softened. Add the flour and cook the mixture over low heat, stirring for 3 minutes. Add the half-and-half, bring the liquid to a boil, and simmer the mixture, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Stir in 1/4 cup each of the Parmesan and Gruyere, mustard, nutmeg, and salt and pepper, to taste.

 

In a separate saucepan combine the potatoes with enough water and salt to cover them by 2-inches, bring the water to a boil, and simmer the potatoes for 1 minute. Drain the potatoes.

 

Transfer the potatoes to a buttered 1 1/2-quart baking dish. Spoon the leek mixture over the potatoes, sprinkle it with the remaining cheeses, and dot the top with the remaining butter. Bake the gratin for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender and the top is golden brown.

 


Macaroni and Cheese with Buttery Crumbs

 

Small chunks of Cheddar and Colby cheeses throughout give this classic American dish a perfect hit of flavor and a fabulous gooey texture.

 

5          Tbs      unsalted butter

3          Tbs      all-purpose flour

2 ½      cups     half-and-half or whole milk

1          lb         sharp Cheddar cheese, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

½         lb         Colby cheese, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1          Tbs      Dijon mustard

Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

Pinch of cayenne pepper

Salt and freshly ground pepper

1          lb         elbow macaroni

¾         cup      plain dry bread crumbs

 

1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Generously butter a shallow 2-quart baking dish. Melt 3 Tbs of the butter in a large saucepan. Add the flour and cook over moderate heat for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the half-and-half and cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly until thickened, about 3 minutes. Add one-half of the Cheddar and Colby cheeses and cook over low heat, stirring, until melted. Stir in the mustard, nutmeg and cayenne; season with salt and pepper.

 

2. Meanwhile, cook the elbow macaroni in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Drain very well. Return the macaroni to the pot. Add the cheese sauce and the remaining cheese and stir until combined. Spread the macaroni in the prepared baking dish.

 

3. In a small glass bowl, melt the remaining 2 Tbs of butter in a microwave oven. Add the bread crumbs, season with salt and pepper and stir until evenly moistened. Sprinkle the buttered crumbs over the macaroni and bake for 45 minutes, or until bubbling and golden on top. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving.


Macaroni and Cheese with Lobster

 

I like this, but I alos LOVE to substitute crawfish tails (you can by 1 pound packs of them), and use about 2 pounds of them in this recipe.

 

2          Tbs      vegetable oil

Kosher salt

1          lb         cavatappi or elbow macaroni

1          quart    whole milk

8          Tbs      (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided

½         cup      all-purpose flour

4          cups     grated Gruyere cheese (12 ounces)

2          cups     grated extra-sharp Cheddar (8 ounces)

½         tsp       freshly ground black pepper

½         tsp       ground nutmeg

1 ½      lbs        cooked lobster meat, 1/2-inch-diced

1 ½      cups     fresh white bread crumbs (5 slices, crusts removed)

 

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

 

Add the oil to a large pot of boiling salted water, add the pasta and cook al dente according to the directions on the package. Drain well.

 

Heat the milk in a small saucepan, but don't allow it to boil. In a large pot, melt 6 tablespoons of the butter and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring constantly with a whisk. Still whisking, add the hot milk and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, add the Gruyere, Cheddar, 1 tablespoon salt, the pepper and nutmeg and stir until the cheese melts. Stir in the cooked pasta and lobster.

 

Pile the mixture into 6 to 8 (2-cup) gratin dishes.

 

Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, combine with the bread crumbs and sprinkle on top. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the sauce is bubbly and the pasta is browned on top.
Mexican Grilled Corn

 

A favorite found being sold on the streets of Mexico, I became familiar with it in a Mexican flea market.

 

4          ears      corn

½         cup      mayonnaise

1 ½      cups     sour cream

¼         cup      freshly chopped cilantro leaves

1          cup      freshly grated Parmesan

1          x          lime, juiced

Red chili powder, to taste

2          x          limes cut into wedges, for garnish

 

Remove the husks of the corn but leave the core attached at the end so you have something to hold onto.  Grill the corn on a hot grill or cast iron griddle pan until slightly charred.  Turn it so it gets cooked evenly all over.  Mix the mayonnaise, sour cream and cilantro together.

 

Grate the Parmesan in another bowl.  While the corn is still warm slather with mayonnaise mix.  Squeeze lime juice over the corn and shower with Parmesan.  Season with chili powder and serve with extra lime wedges.

 


Okra and Black-Eye Pea Sauté

 

¼         lb         strip bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces

1          cup      yellow onion, diced

1 ½      Tbs      garlic, chopped

3          cups     fresh okra, cut into rounds

2          cups     fresh corn kernels

2          x          fresh small red hot chiles, chopped

2          cups     cooked black-eyed peas, recipe follows

1          cup      green onion, diced

Oven dried cherry tomatoes, recipe follows

Salt

Pepper

Freshly chopped parsley and Italian parsley leaves, for garnish

 

In a large sauté pan, cook bacon until fat is rendered. Remove bacon with slotted spoon and set aside. Sauté yellow onion and garlic in bacon drippings until soft. Add okra, corn, and chile pepper and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Add black-eyed peas, green onion, and cherry tomatoes and cook an additional 5 minutes. Season with salt, pepper and chopped parsley and toss in reserved bacon.

 

Black-Eye Peas:

2          cups     black-eye peas

Water, to cover

1          x          onion, quartered, with a bay leaf attached with a clove

½         tsp       ground black pepper and Salt to taste

 

Soak 2 cups beans overnight in water to cover. Rinse the beans and place in a pot with enough water to cover the beans. Add the onion and the black pepper.  Over high heat, allow to come to boil then reduce to simmer and cook for about 45 minutes or until beans are firm but cooked. Season with salt. Let the peas sit in this liquid for 15 minutes before draining.

 

Oven-dried Tomatoes:

2          cups     cherry tomatoes, halved

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Sprinkle brown sugar

6 or 7   x          thyme sprigs

 

Preheat oven to 250 °F.  Place the cut cherry tomatoes on a sheet pan, cut side up. Season with salt, pepper, brown sugar, and sprigs of thyme. Dry in the oven for 4 to 6 hours. Check periodically to make sure they don’t burn.

 

 


Oven Baked Thick Chips with Rosemary Salt

 

2          lbs        large potatoes, cut into large chips 1 cm (1/2-inch) thick

Olive oil

1          bulb     garlic

Freshly ground black pepper

3          sprigs   fresh rosemary

1          x          lemon, zested

3          oz        sea salt

 

 

Place a baking tray in the oven and preheat it to 230 °F C (450 °F).

Parboil the potato chips, skin on, for about 10 minutes in boiling salted water.

 

Heat some olive oil in a frying pan, smash the garlic bulb and chuck in the cloves, then add the potato chips. Toss in the oil and season with pepper. Bake on the preheated tray for 15 to 20 minutes until crispy and golden.

 

Remove the leaves from the rosemary and put in the mortar with the lemon zest and salt. Bash up to make a green paste, adding more salt if it is too wet. Push through a sieve, and sprinkle on the chips to serve.

 

These chips are so fantastic, and far healthier than the deep-fried variety. I had these in Italy and couldn't believe how tasty they were. The rosemary salt can be kept for months in a little airtight jar and has a fantastic intense flavor which is also great with chicken, pork chops, etc.

 


Oven-Fried Onion Rings

 

1          large    egg white, lightly beaten

½         cup      well-shaken low-fat buttermilk

¼         cup      all-purpose flour, plus 1 cup for dredging

½         tsp       salt

¼         tsp       cayenne

1          large    red onion (12 oz), cut crosswise into 1/3-inch thick slices

Olive oil

 

Preheat oven to 450 °F.

 

Whisk together egg whites, buttermilk, flour, salt, and cayenne in a shallow bowl until smooth.

 

Separate onion slices into rings and pick out the 12 largest, reserving remainder for another use.

 

Heat 1-inch of oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking. Working in batches of 4, dredge onions in flour and dip rings into batter, letting excess drip off, then cook in skillet until golden brown, about 1 minute on each side. Transfer rings as browned to a lightly oiled, shallow (1-inch deep) baking pan.

 

Bake rings in middle of oven, turning once, until crisp and deep golden, 12 to 15 minutes total.

 

 


Oven Fries with Herbes de Provence

 

3          x          all-purpose potatoes, scrubbed and dried

2          Tbs      EVOO, extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling

1          Tbs      plus 1 tsp dried herbes de Provence, 2 palmfuls OR

1          tsp       each: dried parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme

Salt, to your taste

 

Preheat oven to 500 °F. Cut potatoes into thin wedges and place on a cookie sheet. Coat potatoes in a thin layer of EVOO, then sprinkle very liberally with 2 palmfuls of herbes. Toss potatoes to coat evenly. Roast potatoes 25 minutes, until crisp and golden at edges. Season hot wedges with salt to your taste.

 


Pan-Roasted Asparagus with Thyme

 

1          Tbs      butter
2          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil
5          large    fresh thyme sprigs
1 ¼      lbs        slender asparagus spears, trimmed
Fleur de sel or coarse kosher salt

 

Melt butter with oil and thyme sprigs in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add asparagus in single layer; using tongs, toss to coat. Sauté, turning often, until crisp-tender and beginning to brown in spots, about 8 minutes. Sprinkle with fleur de sel and pepper and serve.

 

 

 

 

 


Parsnip Pancakes

 

Adapted from the Union Square Cafe 1 1/2 lbs parsnips (about 9 medium), peeled

 

1          small    white onion (about 2 oz)

1          large    egg, beaten lightly

1/8       tsp       cayenne

Pinch freshly grated nutmeg

1/8       tsp       freshly ground pepper

½         tsp       coarse salt

¼         cup      all-purpose flour

¼         cup      olive oil

1          Tbs      unsalted butter

 

In a large saucepan, bring 2 quarts salted water to a boil and add parsnips. Return water to a boil and boil parsnips 3 minutes. Drain parsnips well. In a food processor fitted with coarse grating disk or on a hand grater, grate parsnips and onion coarsely.

Line a baking sheet with waxed paper. In a bowl, stir together parsnips, onion, and egg and stir in spices and salt. Add flour, stirring until just combined, and form mixture into eight 1/2-inch-thick cakes (each about 3 inches in diameter), transferring them as formed to prepared baking sheet.

In a large heavy skillet heat oil and butter over moderately high heat until foam subsides and sauté pancakes in 2 batches until golden, about 5 minutes on each side, transferring them as cooked to paper towels to drain. Pancakes may be kept warm 15 minutes in a 200 degree oven F.

 

 


Piero’s Creamed Corn

 

Served at the 5 Star PIERO'S Italian Restaurant in Las Vegas! This is the original recipe for the most delicious creamed corn (not sweet) you'll ever taste. The recipe is so incredibly simple but the taste is out of this world. Not at all sticky sweet or mushy like canned cream corn, rather barely sweet, but just enough to make you know you are eating something very special. You can't go wrong with this dish. Elegant and impressive.

 

2 ½      lbs        quality frozen corn

1          cup      heavy whipping cream

1          cup      whole milk

1          tsp       salt

2          Tbl       sugar

1          dash     cayenne pepper

2          oz        melted butter

1 ½      oz        flour

¼         cup      shredded parmesan cheese, not powdered kind

 

Preheat broiler.  Combine all ingredients, except butter and flour. Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.

 

Blend melted butter with the flour to make a roux.  Add roux to the corn and mix well.  Remove from heat.  Pour into a casserole dish.  Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.  Broil until cheese is nicely browned.

 

 


Pommes Frites with Parsley Butter

 

Pommes Frites:

½         gallon              vegetable oil

8          medium           Idaho potatoes, peeled

Sea salt

 

Parsley Butter:

½         cup                  (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut in chunks

¼         cup                  chopped flat-leaf parsley

2          cloves              garlic, minced

 

Pour the oil into a deep fryer or heavy saucepan to reach halfway up the sides and heat to 325 °F, use a deep-fry thermometer to determine this. While the oil is heating, peel the skin off the potatoes and cut them into uniform 1/4-inch sticks; feel free to use a knife, mandoline, or French fry cutter. Dry the potato sticks thoroughly to keep the hot oil from splattering.

 

Fry the potatoes in batches so the pot isn't crowded and the oil temperature does not plummet. Cook the French fries for 3 minutes, until soft but not browned. Remove the fries with a long-handled metal strainer and drain on brown paper bags.

 

Increase the oil temperature to 375 °F. Return the par-fried potatoes to the oil and cook a second time for 2 minutes, or until golden and crispy. Drain on fresh brown paper bags then place in a serving bowl. Salt the fries while they're still hot and pour the parsley butter on top; toss gently to combine. Wrap the pommes frites in parchment paper cones and stick them in the bottom of mini martini shakers for serving individually.

 

To make the parsley butter: combine the butter, parsley, and garlic in a saucepan over medium heat. Swirl the pan around until the butter is completely melted.

 

 


Potato Galette

 

Amazing looking, amazing tasting.

 

2 ½      lbs        (5-6 large) Yukon Gold potatoes, scrubbed and sliced 1/8 inch thick

5          Tbs      unsalted butter, melted

1          Tbs      cornstarch

1          tsp       table salt

½         tsp       ground black pepper

1 ½      tsp       chopped fresh rosemary leaves (optional)

 

Adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 450 degrees. Place potatoes in large bowl and fill with cold water. Using hands, swirl to remove excess starch, then drain in colander. Spread potatoes onto kitchen towels and thoroughly dry.

 

Whisk 4 tablespoons butter, cornstarch, salt, pepper, and rosemary (if using) together in large bowl. Add dried potatoes and toss until thoroughly coated. Place remaining tablespoon butter in heavy bottomed 10-inch ovenproof nonstick skillet and swirl to coat. Place 1 potato slice in center of skillet then overlap slices in circle around center slice, -followed by outer circle of overlapping slices. Gently place remaining sliced potatoes on top of first layer, arranging so they form even thickness.

 

Place skillet over medium-high heat and cook until sizzling and potatoes around edge of skillet start to turn translucent, about 5 minutes. Spray 12-inch square of foil with nonstick cooking spray. Place foil, sprayed side down, on top of potatoes. Place 9-inch cake pan on top of foil and fill with 2 cups pie weights. Firmly press down on cake pan to compress potatoes. Transfer skillet to oven and bake 20 minutes.

 

Remove cake pan and foil from skillet. Continue to cook until potatoes are tender when paring knife is inserted in center, 20 to 25 minutes. Return skillet to medium heat on stovetop and cook, gently shaking pan (use potholder—handle will be hot), until galette releases from sides of pan, 2 to 3 minutes.

 

Off heat, place cutting board over skillet. With hands protected by oven mitts or potholders, using 1 hand to hold cutting board in place and 1 hand on skillet handle, carefully invert skillet and cutting board together. Lift skillet off galette. Using serrated knife, gently cut into wedges and serve immediately.

 

 

 


Potato Gratin

 

 

4          x          Idaho potatoes

2          Tbs      butter, plus 1 1/2 oz butter

1          clove    garlic, minced

1          cup      milk

1          cup      heavy cream

3          x          eggs

½         tsp       ground nutmeg

1          tsp       kosher salt

1          tsp       freshly ground black pepper

¾         cup      finely grated Gruyere

½         cup      finely grated Parmesan

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F.

Using a mandolin, thinly slice the potatoes into rounds, and then soak, rinse, and dry the potatoes. Coat the bottoms of 4 fluted (8-oz) oval ramekins with 2 Tbs butter and sprinkle the garlic evenly among the ramekins, and set aside.

 

In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk, cream, eggs, nutmeg, salt, and pepper. In the ramekins, layer the potatoes, Gruyere, and cream mixture. Press down lightly with hands to compress. Top each ramekin with tabs of butter and the Parmesan. Place the ramekins in a water bath and bake until tender and golden brown. Remove the ramekins from the water bath and let rest for 30 minutes before serving.

 

This recipe was provided by professional chefs and has been scaled down from a bulk recipe provided by a restaurant. The FN chefs have not tested this recipe, in the proportions indicated, and therefore, we cannot make any representation as to the results.

 

 

 

 


Potato, Onion, and Rosemary Cake

 

2          Tbs      unsalted butter

2          Tbs      olive oil

1 ½      lbs        onions, thinly sliced

2          lbs        small red potatoes, peeled and very thinly sliced

½         tsp       salt

1          tsp       freshly ground black pepper

2          Tbs      coarsely chopped fresh rosemary

1          cup      cream, whisked together with 1 large egg yolk

 

In a large heavy skillet heat the butter and olive oil over low heat. Sauté the onions slowly, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes. They should be very soft, slightly golden, but not brown.

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F. Lightly oil a 10-inch round baking dish or pie plate. Arrange a circular layer of overlapping potatoes in the pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Arrange a thin layer of onions on top and sprinkle with some of the rosemary. Continue layering until you have used up all the ingredients, finishing with the rosemary. Pour the cream mixture into the dish around the edges so that you don’t disturb the rosemary, drizzling just a little over the top. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 40 minutes. Remove the foil and cook for 10 minutes more, until the top is golden and the potatoes are tender. Let cool for 5 minutes then slice into loose wedges and serve.

 


Potatoes with Bacon and Onions

 

A bit faster and easier than the potato casserole recipes in this book, this stovetop version is very tasty as well.

 

2          lbs        potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/4-inch thick

8          oz        bacon, diced (about 8 slices)

1          cup      sliced yellow onions

1          tsp       Essence, recipe is in the Sauces and Rubs section

½         tsp       salt

Pinch cayenne

1          Tbs      minced garlic

2          Tbs      olive oil

¼         cup      minced fresh parsley leaves

¼         cup      minced fresh cilantro leaves

2          Tbs      minced green onions

 

Place the potatoes in a pot of salted water. Bring to a boil and blanch for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat, drain in a colander and cool.

In a large sauté pan or skillet, cook the bacon over medium-high heat until brown and the fat is rendered, about 6 minutes.  Reserving the rendered bacon fat in the pan, remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Add the onions, Essence, salt, and cayenne to the fat in the pan and sauté until soft, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds. Add the drained potatoes and olive oil and cook, turning, until browned on both sides. Return the bacon to the pan, with the parsley, cilantro, and green onions. Season, to taste, and cook gently until warmed through.

 

Remove from the heat and serve hot.

 

 


Praline Sweet Potatoes (Ardith’s)

 

A favorite for many of the big get-togethers.

 

Sweet Potatoes

3          lrg        eggs

5          lbs        Sweet potatoes, peeled, boiled and mashed (about 6 cups)

2/3       cups     sugar

2/3       cups     butter, melted

½         cup      heavy cream

1          tsp       vanilla

½         tsp       nutmeg

½         tsp       allspice

½         tsp       cinnamon

 

Topping

1          cup      light brown sugar

1/3       cup      flour, unbleached, all purpose

1          cup      finely chopped pecans

1/3       cup      butter in pats

Handful           pecan halves for garnish, if desired

 

Preheat oven to 350º.

 

Mix eggs and mashed sweet potatoes together.  Mix the rest of the Sweet Potato ingredients together separately (sugar through cinnamon), then mix in with the sweet potato/egg mixture.  Spread in a greased, shallow 9x13 baking dish.

 

Mix the brown sugar, flour and chopped pecans together, then work the pats of butter (about a ½ tablespoon each) into the topping mixture.  Spread onto the top of the sweet potatoes.

 

Bake for 60-70 minutes (check after 45) until brown and bubble, but done burn.  Garnish with pecan halves if desired.

 


Rebaked Potatoes

 

There are so many ways to fix this dish, from simple to complex, but I have always found this version as the simplest and the tastiest.  This has sort of evolved over the years, and the girls ask for this dish whenever they get to have whatever they desire for a special occasion.

 

2          large    Baking potatoes

2          Tbs      Butter

4          oz        Sour cream

8          oz        Bacon

4          slices    Munster cheese

 

Bake potatoes as you usually would, either punctured or speared by a metal kabob spear (I prefer this method as it helps cook the inside of a larger potato), and baked at 350 °F for about an hour, turned over half way through.

 

With about 15 minutes left on the potatoes, fry the bacon crisply.  When cool, cut into small pieces.  When the potatoes are ready, cut in half lengthwise, scoop the meat out into a bowl, and set the shells aside on a baking sheet.  If you run a knife around the sides of the potato half, it makes it a lot easier to get the meat out. 

 

In the bowl with the potato meat, add the butter, sour cream and bacon.  Mix well with a potato masher or a mixer until fairly smooth, but do not over mix.  The more you mix, the more the starches are released, and the more gummy the potatoes will be.  Using a spatula, return the potato meat to the shells.  Top each one with a slice of cheese (tear in half and overlap so that you do not have very much hanging over the edge), and place in the oven on the second shelf from the top, under the broiler for 4-5 minutes or until nicely browned. 

 

Serves 4 (one half per person)

 

 

 


Rice Pilaf

 

2          Tbs      butter

½         each     onion, minced

½         each     red bell pepper, minced

2          pnchs   kosher salt

2          cups     long grain rice

2 ¾      cups     chicken broth

2          strips    orange zest

Pinch of saffron strands, steeped in 1/4 cup hot water

1          each     bay leaf

1 ½      cups     frozen peas, thawed (optional)

Golden raisins and pistachios for garnish (also optional)

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F. In a heavy, wide, lidded pan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add onion, red pepper, and kosher salt. Sweat the onions and peppers until aromatic, stirring constantly. Add the rice and stir to coat. Continue stirring until rice smells nutty. Add chicken broth, orange zest, saffron and water, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil. Stir once, then cover pan with moistened dish towel (or tea towel). Place lid on pan and fold towel corners over lid. Bake for 15 minutes. Then rest at room temperature for 10 to 20 minutes without removing the cover. Meanwhile, simmer peas in salted water until heated through or heat in a microwave. Remove lid from rice and turn out onto a platter. Add peas and fluff with a large fork. Add raisins and pistachios.

 

 


Risotto

 

1          med     yellow onion

4          Tbs      butter (1/2 stick)

5          cups     or more chicken broth, canned or homemade

2          cups     Arborio rice (available in many supermarkets or specialty food stores)

Salt and pepper to taste

¾         cup      freshly grated Parmesan cheese

 

Preparing the Rice

Peel and finely chop the onion.

 

Melt the butter in a 4-to-5-quart saucepan over medium heat, stirring regularly.

 

Add the onion and cook, continuing to stir, until it turns soft and translucent. Turn the heat down if the onion starts to brown.

 

Meanwhile, pour the chicken broth into a separate saucepan, set over medium heat, and bring to a gentle simmer. Adjust the heat as needed to maintain this simmer the whole time you are preparing the risotto.

 

Once the onion is soft, add the rice and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, for about 3 minutes. Adjust the heat as necessary -- if the rice is cooked at too high a heat, it will turn brown and take on an undesirable flavor.

 

Adding the Liquid to the Rice

 

Using a ladle, scoop up about 1/2 to 3/4 cup of broth. Pour it in the pan with the rice, stirring constantly with a spoon. After the first addition of broth, the rice mixture will look a bit soupy.

 

As the rice begins to cook, stir it constantly, making sure that you scrape along the bottom of the pan so that it does not stick. You should see little bubbles popping up on the liquid from time to time. If it bubbles more vigorously than this, turn the heat down to medium-low.

 

When most of the liquid is absorbed into the rice and the rice begins to look a bit dry, add another ladle of broth to the pan and stir constantly, as before.

 

Determining When the Risotto Is Cooked

 

Continue to add the broth in 1/2-to-3/4-cup batches and stir the rice until you have used most of the broth (this will probably take about 20 minutes). It is now time to test whether the risotto is cooked. Spoon up a grain of rice and bite into it -- it should be tender without being too mushy. If it is still crunchy and tastes a bit starchy, you will need to continue adding liquid and cooking further.

 

If it looks as if you will run out of chicken broth and your rice is still not cooked, don't be alarmed. Because of variations in individual stoves and cooking temperatures, you may need more liquid than called for in the recipe. Simply heat up another cup or 2 of chicken broth. If you run out of broth, use hot water.

 

When the rice is tender and the risotto has a creamy consistency, almost like thick oatmeal, it is done.

 

Serving the Risotto

 

Add salt and pepper to the risotto, about 1/4 tsp at a time, until it seems well seasoned to you. Stir.

 

Add the grated Parmesan cheese and stir well.

 

Serve the risotto immediately in warm bowls and have extra grated Parmesan on hand.

 

 


Risotto con Funghi

 

2          oz        dried porcinis (look for these in produce department)

1          qt         mushroom broth or chicken stock

1          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil (1 turn around the pan)

1          Tbs      butter

1          x          shallot, finely chopped

1          cup      Arborio rice

½         cup      dry Sherry or dry white wine

1          cup      shiitake or fresh porcinis (or other) mushrooms, sliced

¼         cup      chopped Italian parsley

4          sprigs   fresh thyme, leaves chopped to about 2 Tbs

½         stick     unsalted butter

¾         cup      grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Coarse salt and pepper

 

Place dried porcinis and stock or broth in a saucepan and bring stock to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer.

 

In a large skillet, heat oil and butter over medium to medium high heat. Add shallots and sauté 2 minutes. Add Arborio rice and sauté, 2 or 3 minutes more. Add Sherry and cook the liquid completely absorbed. Add several ladles of hot stock or broth and reduce heat slightly. Simmer, stirring frequently until liquid is absorbed.

 

Remove mushrooms from water and reserve cooking liquid. Coarsely chop the porcinis and add them to the rice. Continue to ladle broth into Arborio, half the remaining amount at a time. Stir mixture each time you add broth and remove from heat when the rice is cooked to al dente. Cool and store any remaining liquids if there are any.

 

The ideal total cooking time for perfect risotto is 22 minutes. The consistency should be creamy, but with a bit of a “bite” (“al dente”) to it, a nugget of resistance in the middle.

 

Stir in thyme and parsley and a few handfuls of grated cheese. Season your risotto with salt and pepper to your taste. Add butter just before taking it off the heat.  Serve creamy mushroom risotto from the hot pan with warm, crusty whole grain breads.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Risotto Milanese Style

 

1          Tbs      olive oil

2          Tbs      butter

2          oz        diced pancetta

1          cup      chopped yellow onions

½         tsp       salt

¼         tsp       white pepper

12        x          turns fresh ground black pepper

1          lb         risotto

5          cups     beef stock

1          cup      warm beef stock

½         tsp       saffron threads

2          tsp       chopped garlic

¼         cup      heavy cream

½         cup      grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

 

Over medium heat, in a large sauté pan, heat the olive oil and 1 Tbs butter. Heat the oil for 1 minute. Add the pancetta and sauté for 1 minute. Add the onions, salt, white pepper, and black pepper. Sauté for 3 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the risotto. Sauté for 2 minutes.

Stir in 5 cups of beef stock and garlic. Dissolve the saffron in the 1 cup of warm beef stock.

 

Stir the stock into the risotto. Bring the liquid up to a simmer, about 6 minutes.

 

Simmer the risotto for 18 minutes, stirring constantly.

 

Stir in the remaining butter, cream, and grated cheese. Simmer for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and serve.

 

Spoon the risotto in the center of four large plates. Lay one osso buco on top of each plate. Spoon the sauce over the top. Garnish with parsley.

 

 

 


Risotto with Tomatoes and Basil

 

Take 4 Roma tomatoes, cut off and discard the stem tops, and cut the tomatoes into small pieces. Chop enough fresh basil leaves into small pieces to make about 1 cup. Put 2 Tbs of olive oil in a skillet, and turn the heat to medium-high. When the bottom of the skillet feels hot when you put your open hand 1 inch from the bottom, add the tomatoes and sprinkle them with salt and pepper. Stir for 3 or 4 minutes, until they seem soft. Put the cooked tomatoes aside, and when the risotto is done, stir the tomatoes and basil into the hot risotto. Stir to mix well; taste for salt and add some if needed. Serve immediately and pass some grated Parmesan cheese.

 

Risotto with Spinach and Garlic

 

Peel and chop 3 large cloves of garlic into small pieces, and put them on a piece of waxed paper. Rinse 1/2 bunch of spinach leaves, and shake off the excess water. Cut off the stems, bunch the leaves up, and cut them into thin strips, then cut crosswise into small pieces. Put 2 Tbs of olive oil in a skillet and turn the heat to medium-high. When the bottom of the skillet feels hot when you put your open hand, palm side down, 1 inch from the bottom of the skillet, it is ready. Add the garlic to the oil and stir for a minute. Turn the heat to low, and add the spinach. Press the spinach down with a spatula, lightly salt and pepper it, and turn it over with a spatula. The spinach will wilt down almost immediately. Take the skillet off the stove, put a lid on the skillet, and when the risotto is done, stir the garlic and spinach into the risotto. Serve immediately, and pass some grated Parmesan cheese.

 

 


Risotto with Sun-Dried Tomato

 

1          oz        sun-dried tomatoes

1          cup      water

2 ½      cups     chicken broth

1          cup      finely chopped onion

1          clove    garlic, minced

4          Tbs      olive oil

1          cup      Arborio rice

¼         cup      freshly grated Parmesan

finely chopped fresh parsley leaves for sprinkling risotto if desired

 

In a small saucepan simmer the tomatoes in the water for 1 minute, drain them, reserving the liquid, and chop them. In a saucepan combine the reserved cooking liquid and the broth, bring the liquid to a simmer. In a large saucepan cook the onion and the garlic in the oil over moderately low heat, stirring, until they are softened, add the rice, stirring until each grain is coated with oil, and stir in the tomatoes. Add 1/2 cup of the simmering liquid is absorbed. Continue adding the liquid, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly and letting each portion be absorbed adding the next, until the rice is tender but still al dente. (The rice should take about 17 minutes to become al dente.) Stir in the Parmesan and salt and pepper to taste and sprinkle the risotto with the parsley.

 

 

 

 


Roasted Garlic and Basil Smashed Potatoes

 

¼         cup      garlic cloves (about 6), unpeeled

4          large    russet potatoes

1          cup      milk, plus more as needed

3          Tbs      unsalted butter, softened

1          tsp       olive oil

½         cup      shredded fresh basil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

 

 

Preheat oven to 400 °F.

Arrange garlic in 1 layer on a double thickness of foil and wrap tightly.

 

Roast the garlic and potatoes in middle of oven--the garlic will take 45 minutes and the potatoes will take 1 hour.

 

Unwrap garlic and cool slightly. Peel the cloves, mash with a fork, and set aside. (The garlic may be roasted and stored in the refrigerator, up to a week ahead.)

 

Combine the milk and butter in a large bowl. Scoop the flesh from the potatoes into the bowl and smash using a potato masher. Reserve the skins and julienne them.

 

Drizzle the skins with the olive oil, transfer to the oven, and bake until crisp, about 12 minutes.

 

Using a rubber spatula, mix the potato mixture and garlic together until creamy. Fold in the basil and season with salt and pepper. Garnish the smashed potatoes with the crisp potato skins.

 

 

 


Roasted Potato Planks with Rosemary & Lemon

 

3          med                 Idaho Potatoes; about 1 ¼ lbs

3          Tbs     olive oil             

1 ½      Tbs     Dijon-style mustard       

1          Tbs     rosemary; fresh, minced

2          tsp      lemon zest; finely grated fresh

2          Tbs     lemon juice; fresh

1 ½      tsp      coarse salt; more to taste

¼         tsp      black pepper; finely ground

 

Heat the oven to 450 °F.  Slice the potatoes on a sharp angle into 3/8-inch slabs.  Put them in a colander and rinse off dirt and lose a little starch for crisper planks.  Shake off  or pat off excess water and spread them onto a heavy rimmed baking sheet lined with 2 layers of paper towels.  Cover with a few more paper towels and let dry.                       

 

In a medium bowl, combine the olive oil, mustard, rosemary, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt and pepper; stir until well blended.  Dump the dried potato planks into the bowl; toss with a spatula until each piece is well coated.  Scrape the potatoes onto the same baking sheet and spread in a single layer.  Drizzle any remaining herb mixture onto the potatoes.    

 

Bake the planks until browned on the bottom, about 20 minutes, then flip with a spatula.  Continue cooking until they're well browned and tender, about another 15 minutes.  Sprinkle with more salt and serve immediately. 

 

I will also simply toss the slices in a plastic bag with the olive oil, lay them on the cookie sheet and sprinkle them with salt, pepper, and them other spices or herbs, whatever I happen to be in the mood for.

 

You can also microwave them for a bit (maybe 4-6 minutes) to soften them up before you slice them, to save time.

 


Roasted Red Onion with Thyme and Butter

 

Try to get 6 equal-sized medium to large red onions. Remove the first layer of skin. With a knife, just take the bottom of the core end of the onion off, to give it a flat base, and make 2 cuts in a cross-shape in the top, cutting half way down (do not cut right through into quarters). Push some chopped or pounded fresh thyme into these gaps with a good pinch of salt (it's important to get the salt right into the gaps) and a little knob of butter. I prefer to cook the onions in an earthenware dish on a thin layer of sea salt or I put them in with my roast chicken or lamb and they cook quite happily in the same tray. Place in the oven fat 200C/400 F/Gas 6 for 30-35 minutes.

 

These onions are great with a roast, so tasty and sweet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Roasted Sesame-and Panko-Coated Asparagus with Soy-Ginger Drizzle

 

Thick asparagus spears become an addictive appetizer when they're given a crunchy coating.

 

¼         cup      mayonnaise
4          tsp       unseasoned rice vinegar, divided
3          tsp       soy sauce, divided
1 ¼      tsp       finely grated peeled fresh ginger, divided
1          cup      panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)*
¼         cup      sesame seeds
1          lb         thick asparagus spears, trimmed, bottom 2/3 of each spear peeled
2 ¼      tsp       Asian sesame oil, divided
1          tsp       golden brown sugar
¼         tsp       chili-garlic sauce*

 

Preheat oven to 450 °F. Oil large rimmed baking sheet. Whisk mayonnaise, 1 tsp rice vinegar, 1 tsp soy sauce, and 1 tsp grated ginger in pie dish. Mix panko and sesame seeds in another pie dish. Toss asparagus in mayonnaise mixture to coat, then roll in panko mixture. Transfer to prepared baking sheet. Drizzle with 2 tsp sesame oil. Roast until browned, turning once, about 16 minutes.

Meanwhile, whisk 1 tsp water, brown sugar, chili-garlic sauce, remaining 3 tsp vinegar, 2 tsp soy sauce, 1/4 tsp ginger, and 1/4 tsp sesame oil in small bowl for sauce.

Transfer asparagus to platter; sprinkle with salt. Drizzle with sauce.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Rosemary Potatoes

 

2          lbs        small red bliss potatoes, quartered

2          Tbs      chopped rosemary

1          Tbs      chopped garlic

2          Tbs      Salt

1          Tbs      coarse-cracked black pepper

1/2       cup      olive oil

 

In a large pot of boiling, salted water cook potatoes until just tender; drain well. In a large bowl toss potatoes with remaining ingredients. Transfer to a baking sheet and roast at 375 °F for 25 minutes until browned and fragrant.   You can also fry on the stove top in the oil over a medium heat for about the same amount of time, stirring occasionally so that they get evenly browned and crisp.  If they are cooking too quickly or drying out, cover and uncover as needed.

 

 

 

 


Rosti with Bacon, Mushrooms and Onions

 

6          large    baking potatoes

1          Tbs      salt

3 ½      oz        smoked bacon, thinly sliced vertically

3 ½      oz        onion, diced

1          sprig    thyme

3 ½      oz        mushrooms, diced

2          Tbs      oil

2          oz        butter

6          slices    Gruyere

Serving suggestion: green salad

 

 

Boil the potatoes in their skins for 20 minutes, drain and leave to cool. Peel them. Using a cheese grater, grate them into a large mixing bowl and sprinkle with salt.

In a frying pan sauté the bacon and onions. Strip the leaves off the sprigs of thyme into the pan. Add mushrooms and cook for about 5 minutes until soft. Combine with the potatoes and mix gently, taking care not to mash them too much.

 

Heat oil in a frying pan and add 3 or 4 spoonfuls of the mixture. Using a spatula, pat the mixture into a round flat cake. Brown it over a high heat. When the bottom side is cooked flip it over. Repeat with remaining potatoes to make 6 cakes.

 

Put 1/2 Tbs of butter and a slice of Gruyere on each cake and melt under a hot grill or broiler. Turn the Rosti onto a plate and serve with a green salad, if desired.

 

 

 

 


Rustic Onion Pie

 

Dough:

4          cups     all-purpose flour

2          Tbs      extra virgin olive oil

½         tsp       salt

1-1 ¼   cups     warm water

 

Filling:

¼         cup      olive oil

10        x          anchovy fillets, optional

4          lbs        Spanish onions, peeled and thinly sliced

2          tsp       salt

2          tsp       freshly ground pepper

 

Special Equipment: 11 by 17-inch baking sheet pan

 

To make the dough, put the flour in a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the center and add the oil and salt. Stir together with a wooden spoon and slowly add the water until a dough begins to form. Turn out onto a well floured surface and knead until smooth.

 

Divide the dough into 2 balls, flatten into disks, wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes or

until ready to use.

 

To make the filling, pour the olive oil into a large pot and place it over medium heat for 1 minute. Add the anchovies and cook, stirring until they dissolve. Add the onions, salt and pepper, stir and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent, about 20 to 30 minutes. Set aside to cool.

 

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature. Grease the baking sheet with olive oil and set aside.

 

On a well floured work surface, roll out 1 of the disks to about 1/8-inch thick rectangle to fit the size of the sheet pan and line the pan with the dough. Spread the filling out over the dough, roll out the second disk a little larger than the sheet pan and place it over the onions. Crimp the edges, brush with olive oil and cut vent slits into the top. Transfer the pan into the top half of the oven and bake until the dough is golden brown, about 1 hour.

Let cool, slice and serve at room temperature.


Sautéed Baby Artichokes

 

 

2 ½      lbs        baby artichokes

2          Tbs      all-purpose flour

Salt and pepper

½         cup      olive oil

2          tsp       minced garlic

½         tsp       crumbled dried rosemary

½         tsp       dried oregano, crumbled

½         tsp       dried basil, crumbled

¼         cup      fresh lemon juice, or to taste

2          cups     dry white wine

¼         tsp       dried hot red pepper flakes, or to taste

2          tsp       finely chopped fresh parsley leaves

 

Bend the outer leaves of the artichokes back until they snap off close to the base and remove several more layers of leaves in the same manner until the white inner leaves are reached. Trim the tips and quarter the artichokes. In a small bowl toss the artichokes with the flour and salt and black pepper to taste. In a skillet heat the oil with the garlic over moderate heat until it is hot but not smoking and cook the garlic until it is softened. Add the artichokes and sauté them over moderately high heat, stirring, for 6 minutes. Stir in the rosemary, the oregano, the basil, and the lemon juice and cook the mixture, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the wine, the red pepper flakes, and salt and black pepper to taste and simmer the mixture, covered, for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the artichokes are very tender. Add the parsley and boil the mixture, uncovered, over high heat for 1 minute, or until it is thickened slightly.

 


Scalloped Potatoes

 

A rich and creamy scalloped potato, easy to make and wonderful to eat.

 

4          cups     heavy cream

2          cups     smooth goat cheese

½         cup      chives, finely chopped

2          lbs        Yukon Gold potatoes, finely sliced

2          large    onions, thinly sliced

2          cloves  garlic, minced

2          Tbs      olive oil

2          Tbs      butter, cubed

Salt and pepper

 

 

In a bowl, mix together the goat cheese with the cream. Season with salt and pepper. Add in the chives. Keep aside.

 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Slice the potatoes into 1/8-inch thick slices by using a mandoline or a very sharp knife. Rinse and keep in cold water.

 

In a large skillet, saute the onions with garlic for about 10 minutes in olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

 

Drain and pat dry the potatoes. In an ovenproof dish, nicely layer the potato slices. Cover with some caramelized onions, and 1/4 of the goat cheese mixture. Repeat the layers and finish with the goat cheese mixture. Season each layer with salt and pepper. Pour the rest of the cream mixture over the potatoes and the butter. Cook in the oven for 1 hour until golden brown.


Steamed Carrots and Mint

 

4          large    fresh mint sprigs plus 1 Tbs chopped fresh mint
1          lb         baby carrots with some green tops attached, peeled
1 ½      Tbs      butter, room temperature
1          x          Fleur de sel or coarse kosher salt

 

Place mint sprigs in bottom of large saucepan; place steamer rack in pan. Add just enough water to touch bottom of steamer rack; place carrots on rack. Cover pan and steam over high heat until carrots are just tender, 8 to 10 minutes, depending on size. Transfer carrots to bowl; toss with butter and chopped mint. Sprinkle with fleur de sel and pepper and serve.


Stuffed Potatoes with Ham, Thyme, and Gruyere

 

4          each     medium to large baking potatoes, like russets, washed

A drizzle extra-virgin olive oil

 

Filling:

1          Tbs      extra-virgin olive oil

2          each     shallots, chopped

1/2       lb         baked ham (deli), sliced 1/8-inch thick, cut into 2-inch thick strips

1/2       lb         Gruyere, shredded, about 2 cups

2          Tbs      butter, in small pieces

1/2       cup      milk or half-and-half

6          sprigs   fresh thyme, leaves only, chopped to about 2 Tbs

Salt and pepper

 

Serving suggestions:

Tossed and dressed salad, as an accompaniment

Dark bread (pumpernickel, multi-grain, or dark rye), as an accompaniment

Butter

Rub potatoes with a drizzle of oil and pierce skins with the tines of a fork. Microwave on high 12 minutes or until tender.

 

While the potatoes cook in the microwave, heat a small skillet over medium heat. Add 1 Tbs of extra-virgin olive oil and Sauté chopped shallots 2 to 3 minutes or until bits are just tender. Set aside.

 

Cool potatoes for 5 minutes, split potatoes down the center, and scrape flesh into a bowl. Set skins aside on a non-stick baking sheet. Preheat broiler to high with oven rack 6-inches from the heat source.

 

To the cooked potato in the mixing bowl, add shallots, ham strips, grated cheese, butter, milk or half-and-half, thyme, and season with salt and pepper. Mash mixture with a potato masher or dinner fork until mixture is combined, but not entirely lump-free.

 

Scoop mixture in even amounts into skins and broil 2 or 3 minutes to lightly brown stuffed potatoes on top. Serve the halves of stuffed potatoes with salad, dark bread, and butter.

 


Sugar Snap Peas with Onions and Bacon

 

3          slices    bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1          small    yellow skinned onion, peeled and chopped

1          lb         sugar snap peas

½         cup      water

Salt and pepper

 

In a medium skillet over medium high heat, brown chopped bacon. Using a slotted spoon, remove bacon to a paper towel lined plate. Add onion to the pan. Sauté chopped onions 3 minutes or so, until they are just tender. Add peas and water to the pan. Cover and cook peas 5 minutes. Uncover and allow the liquid to cook almost out of the pan. Add bacon back to the skillet and remove pan from heat. Transfer to a serving dish and enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 


Thick Cut “O” Rings and Spicy Dipping Sauce

 

Vegetable or canola oil for frying 

2          large    sweet Vidalia onions

2          cans     evaporated milk, 5 oz

1          cup      all purpose flour

½         sp         dried mustard

½         sp         cayenne pepper

1          tsp       sweet paprika, 1/3 palm full

Coarse salt

Dipping sauce:

1          cup      reduced fat sour cream, eyeball the amount

¼         up        chili sauce, eyeball the amount

½         sp         cayenne pepper

½         sp         ground cumin

 

Heat 1 inch of vegetable or canola oil in a large frying pan over medium high heat.

Cut onions across into 1-inch rings and separate. Discard the outer layer of skin on your rings. Pour evaporated milk into a small, deep bowl. Mix flour with seasonings in a pie plate or shallow dish. Dip individual rings in milk, then coat in flour. And repeat for a double dip. Fry in a single layer in hot oil until golden brown. Remove to brown paper bag or paper towel lined surface to drain. Salt while hot, to your taste.

 

For dipping sauce, combine all ingredients in a bowl and stir.

 

Tip: refrigerate your onions and canned evaporated milk when you unpack from the grocery store. The colder the better for making onion rings!

 


Three Potato Galette

 

1          Tbs      unsalted butter

2          heads   garlic, halved

1          qt         cream

1          lb         peeled white potatoes, 1/4-inch slices

1          lb         peeled sweet potatoes, 1/4-inch slices

1          lb         red potatoes, 1/4-inch slices

2          cups     grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus 2 Tbs for garnish

Salt and white pepper

Essence, recipe in the Sauces and Rubs section

2          Tbs      chopped chives

 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease a porcelain soufflé dish with the butter. In a sauce pot, bring the garlic and cream up to a simmer. Season with salt and white pepper. Simmer the cream for 15 minutes, or until the cream has reduced by 1/4 and has slightly thickened. Season the potatoes with salt and white pepper. Alternate layering the white potatoes, sweet potatoes, red potatoes, and cheese in the prepared dish. You should have a total of six layers. Remove the garlic from the cream and pour over the potatoes.

Cover the soufflé dish with aluminum foil. Place in the oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes. Remove the foil and continue cooking for 10 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Cool the gratin for 10 minutes before serving. Place a piece of the gratin on a plate and garnish with Essence, cheese, and chives.

 

 

 

 


West Town Tavern Caramelized Brussels Sprouts with Black Vinegar Sauce

 

If you’ve ever had Brussels sprouts and thought “Who the heck in their right mind would ever eat these willingly” (and let’s face it, who hasn’t), these will be a new experience.  Be careful to brown and caramelize the sprouts, and that brings all those hidden sugars to the surface, changing the sulfur-like flavor notes to sweet candied ones.  It takes time.

 

1 ½      lbs        Brussels Sprouts (preferably small)

1          Tbs      kosher salt

3          Tbs      olive oil

Kosher salt and cracked black pepper to taste

Water, as needed

4          Tbs      butter

 

In a 6-quart saucepan, over high heat, bring 4 quarts of water to a boil and add 1 Tbs of salt.  While water is heating, trim the sprouts, remove any course outer leaves and cut sprouts in half vertically through the stem. 

 

Fill a large bowl halfway with cold water and add a few cups of ice cubes.  Blanch the sprouts in the boiling water until they are just barely tender, about 2-3 minutes.  Drain the sprouts and plunge them into the reserved ice water to cool quickly.  When cold, drain the sprouts and shake dry.  Sprouts may be refrigerated, covered, for up to 2 days.

 

You’ll want to consider starting the Black Vinegar Sauce about now (or sooner).  This can be found in the Sauces section.

 

In a 5-quart sauté pan over high heat, heat the olive oil to almost smoking.  Add the sprouts and cook, shaking the pan and tossing or stirring over high heat until the sprouts begin to brown around the edges.  Lower the heat to medium, season the sprouts with salt and pepper and continue to sauté, stirring occasionally until sprouts begin to soften, brown and caramelize, about 10 minutes.  Be sure to keep the heat high enough to brown the sprouts.

 

When the sprouts are tender, lower the heat and splash in a little water only if they are very dry.  Add the butter and gently toss the sprouts to coat.  Over medium-high heat, sauté to lightly brown the butter.  If the sprouts begin to crisp a little around the edges, so much the better.  Serve immediately.

 


Wine-Roasted Fingerling Potatoes with Onions and Olives

 

4          lbs        medium fingerling potatoes, peeled

1          med     red onion, thinly sliced

1          cup      Niçoise olives (6 oz)

½         cup      extra-virgin olive oil

¼         cup      dry white wine

4          x          bay leaves

2          large    garlic cloves, thinly sliced

Kosher or sea salt

 

Preheat the oven to 375°. In a roasting pan, toss the potatoes with the onion, olives, olive oil, wine, bay leaves and garlic and season with salt. Cover with foil and bake for about 1 hour, or until just tender. Uncover, stir well and bake for 30 minutes longer, or until the potatoes are very tender and lightly glazed. Season with salt and serve.

 


Yukon Gold Gruyere Galette

 

¼         cup      shallots; finely chopped

3          Tbs      extra virgin olive oil      

1          lb         Yukon Gold potatoes; unpeeled and scrubbed

1          tsp      fresh thyme leaves; lightly chopped

1          each     Kosher salt           

½         cup                  Parmigiano Reggiano       

1          cup                  Gruyere cheese; finely grated

 

Combine the shallots and 3 Tbs of the oil in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over a medium heat.  Reduce to a low simmer; cook the shallots until nicely softened (don't let them brown), about 2 minutes.  Remove from the heat and let cool completely (about 25 minutes at room temperature).  Heat the oven to 400 °F.  Rub the bottom and inside edge of a 7 ½ inch tart pan with a removable bottom with ½ tsp olive oil or spray with olive oil spray.                              

 

Slice the potatoes as thinly as possible.  Discard ends.  Put the potato slices in a mixing bowl, add the shallots and olive oil along with the herbs and toss will to thoroughly coat the potatoes.            

 

Cover the bottom of the tart pan with a layer of potato slices, overlapping them slightly. 

 

Start along the outside edge of the tart pan and, making slightly overlapping rings, move inward until the bottom is covered with one layer of potatoes.  Sprinkle the potatoes with salt (a generous ⅛ tsp) and then sprinkle about one-quarter of the Parmigiano and about one-quarter of the Gruyere over all.  Arrange another layer of potatoes, season with salt, sprinkle with cheese, and repeat two more times, until you have four layers of potatoes (this is a messy job - you will need a damp towel to wipe your hands between layers).  Top the last layer with more salt and any remaining cheese.

 

Bake the galette until the top is a red-dish golden grown and the potatoes are tender in all places (a fork with thin tines should poke easily through all the layers), 45 to 50 minutes.  The bottom will be crisp and the sides brown.

 

Let the galette cool for 10 to 15 minutes in the pan.  It will then be cool enough to handle but still plenty hot inside for serving.  Have a cutting board nearby.  Run a paring knife around the edge of the galette to loosen it and carefully remove the tart ring by gently pressing the tart bottom up.  Slide a very thin spatula under and all around the bottom layer to free the galette from the tart bottom.  Use the spatula to gently slide the galette onto a cutting board.  Cut into four or six wedges, or as many as you like.      

 


Zucchini Pie

 

1          x          unbaked pie shell

4          cups     thinly sliced, unpeeled zucchini

1          cup      coarsely chopped onion

¼-½     cup      margarine or butter

½         cup      parsley, chopped

½         tsp       salt

½         tsp       pepper

½         tsp       basil leaves, dried

½         tsp       oregano leaves, dried

2          x          eggs, well beaten

8          oz        natural mozzarella cheese, shredded

 

Heat oven to 375.  In 10 inch skillet, cook zucchini and onion in margarine until tender, about 10 minutes.  Mix in parsley and seasonings.

 

In large bowl, blend eggs and cheese.  Mix in vegetable mixture.  Pour into pie shell.

 

Bake at 375 for 45 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean.

 

If crust begins to get too brown, cover with foil during the last 10 minutes of baking.

 

Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

               


Desserts

 

                                                        

 

 

 

Ardith Nehrt’s Rhubarb Pie

 

Filling:

3          each     eggs, beaten

1/3       cup      sugar

2/3       cup      sugar (used when assembling)

1          tsp       salt

1          tsp       vanilla

1          cup      milk (or just a bit less)

1          x          rhubarb, chopped into small pieces (enough to come to ½ inch from top of pie crust

Crust:

1 1/8    cup      sifted flour

½         tsp       salt

½         cup      Crisco, minus 1 Tbs (or 7 Tbs Crisco)

2 ½      Tbs      cold water

 

For the crust, mix the flour and salt together, cut in the Crisco, then sprinkle with the water, using a fork to fluff and mix the mixture.

 

For the custard, beat the eggs, add in the 1/3 cup sugar, salt, vanilla and milk, and mix well.

 

In the unbaked crust, sprinkle 1/3 cup sugar on bottom of crust, add the rhubarb until it is about ½ inch from the top, then sprinkle another 1/3 cup sugar on top of the rhubarb.  Add the custard over the top of the rhubarb and sugar, and bake at 350° F for 50 to 60 minutes, until set, then if you want, at 400 °F for 10 minutes to brown it.  Turn off oven and let it “set” for a few minutes longer.

 

 


 

Baked Pears with Vanilla Mascarpone

 

4          x          Anjou or Bosc Pears

1          Tbs      unsalted butter, softened

2          tsp       Granulated sugar

1          cup      Red Wine

4          sprigs   Thyme (optional)

Vanilla Mascarpone

Store-bought biscotti

 

Preheat oven to 425.  Slice off bottom end of each pear just enough so that it will stand upright.  Using a melon baller or small spoon, remove seeds from the button.  Peel upper half, leafing stem intact, and pat dry with a paper towel.  Rub butter over peeled part of each pear, and arrange pears in a small baking dish (about 7 by 11 inches) so they are standing.  Sprinkle with the sugar.

 

Pour wind into baking dish; add thyme sprigs, if using.  Bake until pears are soft when pierced with a paring knife and well browned, about 45 minutes;  using a small spoon, baste pears occasionally with the wine, adding a bit of water as need to prevent liquid from evaporating.  Remove from oven.

 

To serve, spoon some of the pan juices into each serving dish, and place a pear on top.  Serve with a dollop of mascarpone and several biscotti on the side.

 

Vanilla Mascarpone

(For the creamiest result, allow the mascarpone to stand at room temperature for fifteen minutes before serving)

 ½        x          vanilla bean, split and scraped

8          oz        mascarpone cheese

2          Tbs      Confectionary’s sugar

 

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl, and stir together with a wooden spoon.

 

 


Bananas Foster

 

  4        Tbs      butter

  ¾       cup      packed light brown sugar

  ½       tsp      ground cinnamon

  1        pinch   ground nutmeg

  4-6     ripe      bananas halved then split

  1        cup      banana liqueur

  1        cup      rum

  1        pint      vanilla ice cream

   powdered sugar

 

Melt the butter in a large pan, then add the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. However much cinnamon and nutmeg you put in is up to you. Add the bananas to the pan and baste them for a few minutes. Then pull the pan off the burner to add your booze. Be careful, because this will ignite a large puff of flame. Put the pan back on the burner and shake it a couple of times, it should ignite. It doesn't, then light it with a match. Presto! Stir or shake the pan carefully, until the flames go out. Place them over ice cream, sprinkle with the powdered sugar, and serve.

 

 

 


Beth’s Melt-aways

 

½         cup      butter

3          Tbs      confectionary sugar

1          cup      flour (sift before measuring)

1          cup      finely chopped walnuts

1          tsp       vanilla

 

Cream butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add flour, mix into butter mixture.  Add in walnuts and vanilla.

 

Shape into small balls and bake on ungreased cookie sheet at 350 °F for 15-20 minutes, until just turning brown.  Remove from oven and sprinkle on additional confectionary sugar while still warm.  An alternative is to make in bar or crescent shape, and dip one half into melted sweet chocolate.

 

 

 


Black-Bottom Chocolate Pie

 

Filling:

2/3       cup      sugar

¼         cup      cornstarch

2          Tbs      unsweetened cocoa powder

1          Pinch   salt

6          large    egg yolks

2          cups     low-fat (1%) milk

½         cup      chilled whipping cream

6          oz        bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped

1          Tbs      dark rum

1          tsp       vanilla extract

Chocolate Crumb Crust


Topping:

1          cup      chilled whipping cream

2          Tbs      powdered sugar

1          tsp       dark rum

Chocolate curls

 

For Filling: Whisk first 4 ingredients in heavy medium saucepan to blend. Whisk in egg yolks to form thick paste. Gradually whisk in milk, then cream. Whisk over medium-high heat until mixture thickens and boils 1 minute. Remove from heat. Add chocolate and whisk until smooth. Whisk in rum and vanilla. Cool 5 minutes, whisking occasionally. Transfer filling to frozen crust. Chill until cold, at least 2 hours and up to 1 day.

 

For Topping: Beat first 3 ingredients in large bowl until firm peaks form. Spoon whipped cream into pastry bag fitted with large star tip. Pipe rosettes around edge of pie. Garnish with chocolate curls. (Can be made 4 hours ahead; chill.)

 

Rich, creamy, decadent—this could be the new benchmark for an American classic.

 

 

 


Boccone Dolce

 

6          single   egg whites at room temp.      

1          pinch   salt                

¼         tsp       cream of tarter         

1 ½      cup      sugar              

6          oz        semi-sweet chocolate       

3          Tbs      water              

1 ½      pint      fresh strawberries        

2 ½      cup      heavy cream           

3          Tbs      sugar to sweeten         

 

Trace 3 circles on waxed paper, about 8 inches in diameter, or use heavily greased and floured baking sheets.  Beat the egg whites until light and foamy.  Add salt and cream of tarter, beat until soft.  Add first sugar, beat until stiff and glossy.  Spread meringue evenly on waxed paper circles.  Bake at 250 for 1 hr.  Turn off heat and let meringues dry in oven for another hour.  Remove and carefully peel off waxed paper.  Let cool completely on racks.                            

                                      

Melt chocolate and water in double boiler and stir until smooth.  Spread over 2 layers of meringue only, and let stand until set.      

                                     

Clean and hull and slice strawberries.  Make the whipped cream.      

                                     

Put ½ inch layer of cream over one of the chocolate covered meringues.  Lay ½ of the strawberries over the cream.  Place the 2nd meringue on top of the strawberries.  Repeat with the 2nd chocolate covered meringue.  Lay the 3rd meringue on the stack.  Put the remainder of the whipped cream around the sides and top.  Make a pattern on the top by piping the whipped cream and garnish with whole strawberries.                            

                                      

Refrigerate 24 hours.                           

 


Boston Chewy Oatmeal Cookies

 

1 ½      cups     old-fashioned or quick-cooking rolled oats (not instant oatmeal)

1 ¼      cups     all-purpose flour

½         tsp       baking powder

½         tsp       baking soda

½         tsp       salt

1          tsp       ground cinnamon

½         tsp       ground allspice

¼         lb         (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

¾         cup      sugar

¼         cup      packed dark brown sugar

2          x          eggs

1          tsp       vanilla extract

¼         cup      whole or lowfat milk

1          cup      raisins

1          cup      chopped walnuts

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F. Lightly grease 2 cookie sheets.

 

Whisk together the rolled oats, flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and allspice in a large bowl.

 

Using an electric mixer, cream the butter with the two sugars in a large bowl until smooth. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat until light and well blended. With the mixer on low speed, add the oat mixture and the milk, beating until well combined and a stiff dough forms. Stir in the raisins and nuts. (If not using immediately, refrigerate the dough for up to 12 hours.) Drop the dough by tablespoonfuls onto the prepared cookie sheets, spacing about 2 inches apart. Press the tops gently to flatten very slightly.

 

Bake until the edges are brown and the centers are still soft and puffy, about 11 to 14 minutes. Cool on wire racks. Store in a covered container for up to 3 days or freeze.

 

Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

 

 

 


Bourbon Pecan Pie

 

1          cup      sugar

3          Tbs      butter, melted

½         cup      dark corn syrup

3          large    eggs, beaten

2          cups     pecan halves

2          Tbs      good-quality bourbon

1          9-inch  deep-dish pie shell, unbaked

 

Preheat the oven to 375 °F.

In a medium bowl, stir together the sugar and melted butter. Add the corn syrup, eggs, pecans, and bourbon, and stir until all ingredients are combined. Pour mixture into an unbaked pie shell, and place on a heavy-duty cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 350 °F, and continue to bake for an additional 25 minutes, or until pie is set. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.

 


Bourbon Sauce For Ice Cream

 

1          cup     brown sugar

1          cup     white sugar

1          cup     water

1          cup     strawberry preserves

1          x          orange in small sections

1          x          juice of one lemon

1          x          grated lemon rind

1          cup     nuts (pecans or eng. walnuts or both)

½         cup     whiskey or bourbon

 

Mix and boil the sugars and the water until it spins a thread. Then add the remaining ingredients. Put the sauce in the refrigerator and let it ripen. It gets better as time goes on.

 


Carrot Cake

 

1 ½      cup      olive oil or canola oil

4          each     eggs

2          cups     sugar

2          cups     flour

2          tsp       baking powder

2          tsp       baking soda

1 ½      tsp       salt

2          tsp       cinnamon

3          cups     grated carrots

½         cups     chopped pecans

 

Frosting:

1          8 oz     pkg cream cheese

1          cup      butter

1          tsp       vanilla

½         cup      chopped pecans

1          pkg      powdered sugar

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.

 

Beat the oil and eggs together well.  Add the next 6 ingredients (up to and including the cinnamon), and beat well.  Stir in the carrots and the pecans.

 

Bake for 40 minutes or until done (test in the normal way).  Let cool, then make the frosting as follows.  Beat the cream cheese and butter a long time until light and fluffy.  Add the vanilla and the pecans (unless you wish to use the pecans only on the outside as garnish), and add about half the powdered sugar.  Once the sugar is added in, begin tasting, and adding more powdered sugar until the consistency and the taste is where you want it.  Cover the cake.


Champagne Zabaglione With Fresh Fruit Compote

 

Zabaglione:

1          cup      dry Champagne or other sparkling wine

¾         cup      powdered sugar

5          large    egg yolks

2          Tbs      light corn syrup

 

6          Tbs      chilled whipping cream

 

Fruit Compote:

2          large    oranges

½         small    pineapple, peeled, cored

1          basket strawberries, hulled, quartered

2          x          kiwis, peeled, sliced into rounds

1          x          pear, peeled, cored, diced

 

6          Tbs      chilled dry Champagne

6          whole strawberries

 

 

For zabaglione:

Whisk Champagne, sugar, yolks and corn syrup in large metal bowl to blend. Set bowl over saucepan of simmering water (do not allow bottom of bowl to touch water). Whisk constantly until mixture has tripled in volume and candy thermometer registers 160 °F., about 10 minutes. Remove from over water. Using electric mixer, beat zabaglione until completely cool, about 5 minutes.

 

Beat cream to soft peaks in medium bowl. Fold cream into cooled zabaglione. Chill until ready to use. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and keep refrigerated. Stir lightly to lessen texture before serving.)

 

For fruit compote:

Using small sharp knife, cut off peel and white pith from oranges. Working over bowl, cut between membranes to release orange segments. (Oranges can be prepared 6 hours ahead. Cover; refrigerate.)

 

Using tip of vegetable peeler, cut out eyes from pineapple; discard eyes. Dice pineapple. Combine pineapple, quartered strawberries, kiwis and pear in large bowl. Mix in oranges.

 

Spoon fruit into 6 stemmed glasses. Pour 1 Tbs Champagne over fruit in each goblet. Top fruit with zabaglione. Garnish each serving with whole strawberry and serve immediately.

 

 

 


Cheesecake With Apricot Sauce

 

½         cup      graham cracker crumbs, coarse

2          lbs        cream cheese, at room temperature

4          each     eggs

1 ¾      cups     sugar

Juice of one lemon

Grated rind of one lemon

1          tsp       vanilla

Berries (strawberries, blueberries, etc. for garnish, optional)

 

Preheat oven to 325 °F.  Butter the inside of a metal cake pan or soufflé dish 8 inches wide and 3 inches deep.  Don’t use a spring form pan.  Sprinkle with the graham cracker crumbs and shake the crumbs around the bottom and sides until coated.  Shake out the excess crumbs.  Set aside.

 

Place the cream cheese, eggs, sugar, lemon juice, rind and vanilla into the bowl of an electric beater.  Start beating at low speed and, as the ingredients blend, increase the speed to high.  Continue beating until thoroughly blended and smooth.

 

Pour and scrape the batter into the prepared pan and shake gently to level the mixture.  Set the pan inside a slightly wider pan and pour boiling water into the larger pan to a depth of about half an inch.  Do not let the edge of the cheesecake pan touch the rim of the other larger pan.  Set this inside the oven and bake 1 ½ to 2 hours.  At the end of that time, turn off the oven heat and let the cake sit in the oven 20 minutes longer.

 

Lift the cake out of the water bath and place it on a cooling rack.  Let the cake stand until it reaches room temperature.

 

Invert a plate over the cake and carefully turn both upside down to unmold the cake.  Invert a cake plate over the bottom of the cake and carefully turn this upside down so that the cake comes out right side up.  Garnish with berries and/or spoon sauce over everything.

 

Sauce:

1          10 oz   jar apricot jam

¼         cup      sugar

½         cup      water

1          Tbs      rum, cognac or kirsch, optional

 

Combine the jam, sugar and water in a small saucepan and stir over low heat until blended and smooth.  Using a small sieve and small spoon or whisk. Strain the sauce while working it with the spoon or whisk.  Let cool and stir in the rum.  Be very careful with the rum and the stove flame. 


Cherries Jubilee

 

1          stick     butter

1          cup      sugar

1          lb         Bing cherries

Juice of one orange

Zest of one orange

1          Tbs      cornstarch

1          Tbs      cold water

1          cup      Cherry Brandy

1          pint      vanilla bean ice cream

 

In a large sauce pan, over medium heat, melt the butter. Stir in the sugar and cook for about 2 minutes, or until the sugar dissolves. Add the cherries, orange juice and orange zest. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. In a small cup, stir the cornstarch and water together, for a slurry. Stir the slurry into the cherry mixture and cook for 1 minute. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the brandy over the cherries. Place the pan back on the heat and carefully shake the pan several times to ignite the pan. If the pan does not light use a match to flame the cherries. Divide the ice cream between four shallow bowls. Spoon the cherry mixture over the ice cream and serve

 

 

 


Chocolate Beet Cake

 

You won't taste the pureed beets, but they make this cake extra moist and play up its deep chocolate flavor.

 

4          x          medium beets, trimmed, peeled, and cut into 2-inch chunks

2          cups     all-purpose flour

1 ½      cups     sugar

½         cup      unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder

1 ½      tsp       baking soda

1          x          Salt

2          large    eggs

¾         cup      warm water

¼         cup      safflower oil

1          tsp       pure vanilla extract

1          x          Vegetable oil cooking spray

1          x          Chocolate Glaze

1          x          Candied Beet Chips, for garnish

 

Cover beets with 2 inches water in a pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until very tender when pierced with the tip of a sharp paring knife, about 30 minutes. Drain. Puree beets in a food processor until smooth.

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and 3/4 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Whisk in eggs, water, oil, vanilla, and 1 1/4 cups beet puree (reserve remaining puree for another use).

 

Coat a 9-inch round cake pan (3 inches deep) with cooking spray. Line bottom with parchment, and coat with spray. Pour batter into pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Let cool in pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Turn out cake from pan, and discard parchment. Let cool completely, right side up.

 

Trim top of cake using a serrated knife to create a level surface. Transfer cake, cut side down, to a platter. Pour chocolate glaze over the top, and let set, about 30 minutes. Garnish with beet chips.

 

 


Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Cake

 

Filling:

8 ½      1-oz     semisweet chocolate squares

½         cup      butter

3          x          eggs, separated

½         cup      sugar

¼         cup      bourbon

¼         cup      flour

1 ½      cups     chopped pecans

Ganache:

1          cup      heavy cream

1 ¼      cups     semisweet chocolate chips

 

 

Preheat oven to 325 °F.

Grease and flour a 9-inch springform pan. Melt the chocolate and butter in a small bowl over a double boiler. Remove from heat, and set pot aside leaving the bowl on top of pot.

 

Whisk egg yolks and 1/2 of the sugar in a metal mixing bowl. Place bowl over slightly simmering water, and whisk until yolks reach 140 °F. Remove bowl from heat and beat egg and sugar mixture with an electric mixer to a ribbon stage. Add the Bourbon to the chocolate mixture, then fold the yolk and sugar mixture into the chocolate mixture. Mix flour with pecans and fold into chocolate mixture.

 

Using an electric mixer, beat egg whites and 1/2 of the remaining sugar to form soft peaks, then fold into chocolate mixture. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Allow cake to cool in pan and then place in the freezer for at least 2 hours. Once it's frozen, remove sides of springform pan. Invert cake onto a wire rack and remove bottom of springform pan.

 

Prepare ganache by bringing heavy cream to a boil and pouring cream over chocolate chips in a bowl. Whisk until completely smooth. Set wire rack with cake on top of sheetpan. Pour warm lukewarm ganache over cake, coating cake completely, recoating if necessary. Gently jiggle wire rack to help drain excess ganache. Remove cake from wire rack with spatula and place on a serving plate.

 

 


Chocolate Caramel Cake with Sea Salt

 

This one is a bit of a hassle with making the caramel from scratch, but you simply cannot beat the frosting.  Seriously, best frosting ever.

 

Cake

Nonstick vegetable oil spray

2¼       cups     all-purpose flour

¾         cup      natural unsweetened cocoa powder

1¾       tsp       baking powder

¼         tsp       baking soda

½         tsp       kosher salt

3          large    eggs

1½       cups     sugar

1¼       cups     mayonnaise (not low-fat)

1          Tbs      vanilla extract

 

Frosting

12        oz        bittersweet chocolate, chopped

¾         cup      sugar

1          Tbs      light corn syrup

1          cup      heavy cream

1½       cups     (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

¾         tsp       flaky sea salt (such as Maldon)

Extra-virgin olive oil (for drizzling; optional)

 

Cake: Preheat oven to 325°. Lightly coat three 8”-diameter cake pans with nonstick spray and line bottoms with parchment paper; spray again. Whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Using an electric mixer on high speed, beat eggs and sugar until pale and doubled in volume, about 4 minutes. Add mayonnaise and vanilla and beat until just combined. With mixer on low speed, add dry ingredients in 3 additions, alternating with 1⅓ cups lukewarm water in 2 additions, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Scrape batter into pans, dividing evenly. Bake cakes, rotating halfway through, until a tester inserted into the centers comes out clean, 25-30 minutes. Transfer pans to wire racks and let cool 20 minutes before turning out onto racks. Let cool completely.

 

Frosting and assembly: Put chocolate in a medium bowl. Bring sugar, corn syrup, and ¼ cup water to a boil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Boil, swirling pan occasionally and brushing down sides with a wet pastry brush, until mixture turns a deep amber color, 10-12 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in cream (mixture will bubble vigorously). Return to medium heat and cook, stirring, until smooth, about 2 minutes. Pour caramel over chocolate and stir until mixture is smooth; let cool, stirring occasionally. Using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat chocolate mixture, gradually adding butter, until frosting is thickened and smooth, about 1 minute. Chill, stirring occasionally, until stiff enough to spread easily, 20-25 minutes. Place 1 cake layer on a cake stand or platter. Spread 1 cup frosting over to come just beyond edges. Sprinkle with ¼ tsp. salt and place second cake layer on top, pressing down gently. Repeat process with 1 cup frosting and ¼ tsp. salt. Place third layer on top, and spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake. Just before serving, sprinkle remaining ¼ tsp. salt over top of cake; drizzle slices with oil, if desired.

 


Chocolate Ganache Cake

 

Cake

¼         lb         unsalted butter at room temperature

1          cup      sugar

4          x-large eggs at room temperature

1          16-oz   can Hershey’s chocolate syrup

1          Tbs      vanilla extract

1          cup      all purpose flour

 

Ganache:

½         cup      heavy cream

8          oz        semisweet chocolate chips

1          tsp       instant coffee granules

 

Preheat oven to 325 °F.  Grease and flour a 9-inch springform pan.

 

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Incorporate eggs one at a time, scraping bowl down after each egg.  Mix in syrup and vanilla.  Add in flour and mix until just combined.  Don’t overbeat or cake will be tough.

 

Pour into a buttered, floured tin and back at 325 for 40-45 minutes, or until just set in the middle.  Don’t overbake.  Let cool thoroughly in pan.

 

Using a double boiler or heavy-bottomed sauce pan, prepare ganache by heating ingredients until chocolate has melted and ganache is smooth and warm, stirring occasionally.  Place cake upside down on wire rack on top of sheetpan. Pour warm lukewarm ganache over cake, coating cake completely, tilting rack to smooth glaze, recoating if necessary. Remove cake from wire rack with spatula and place on a serving plate.  Serve with softened Haagen-Dazs or other rich ice cream, placing some on each plate with a piece of cake on top or to the side.

 

 


Chocolate-Macadamia Tart

 

The maple syrup in this tart lightens the chocolate flavor and creates an ethereal custard to hold buttery macadamias.

 

1          cup      heavy cream

½         cup      chopped bittersweet chocolate (3 oz)

3          large    eggs

½         cup      pure maple syrup

¼         cup      sugar

½         tsp       kosher salt

2          cups     macadamia nuts (10 oz)

 

 

Preheat the oven to 325°. Butter a 9-inch pie plate. In a heatproof bowl, microwave the cream and chocolate for 25 seconds until melted. Whisk until smooth. Let cool to warm. Whisk in the eggs, maple, sugar and salt.

Pour the mixture into the pie plate. Insert the macadamias in an even layer. Bake the tart for 40 minutes, until the custard is just set. Let cool. Cut into wedges and serve.

 

Banyuls is a vin doux naturel, a dessert wine that gets its sweetness from unfermented grape sugar. Its berry richness is perfect with this luscious tart. Try the cinnamon-inflected 2005 Domaine du Mas Blanc Rimage.

 

 


Coconut Lime Sours

 

2          cups     flour

4          Tbs      sugar

1/8       tsp       salt

¼         lb         (1 stick), plus 2 1/2 Tbs margarine

4          x          eggs, beaten

1          cup      almonds, chopped

2          cups     light brown sugar, firmly packed

3          cups     sweetened flaked coconut

1 ½      cups     powdered sugar

2          Tbs      fresh lime juice

2          tsp       lime zest

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F.

Combine flour, sugar, and salt in a bowl. Cut in margarine until mixture resembles coarse meal. Press crust into ungreased 10 by 15-inch baking pan. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

 

Mix eggs, nuts, brown sugar, and coconut until well blended; spread over baked crust.

 

Bake an additional 30 minutes or until set.

 

While still warm, loosen the edges with a metal spatula. Mix together the powdered sugar, lime juice, and zest with a fork. Working quickly, spread the lime paste all over the top with a spatula while still warm. Let cool to room temperature and cut into bars. Cut 11 cuts crosswise and 3 cuts lengthwise.

 

 

 

 


Crème Bruleé

 

9          each     egg yolks

¾         cup      superfine white sugar plus 6 Tbs

1          qt         heavy cream

1          each     vanilla bean

 

Preheat oven to 325 °F. In a large bowl, cream together egg yolks and sugar with a whisk until the mixture is pale yellow and thick.

 

Pour cream into a medium saucepan over low heat. Using a paring knife, split the vanilla bean down the middle, scrape out the seeds and add them to saucepan. Bring cream to a brief simmer, do not boil or it will overflow. Remove from heat and temper the yolks by gradually whisking the hot vanilla cream into yolk and sugar mixture. Do not add hot cream too quickly or the eggs will cook.

 

Divide custard into 6 (6-oz) ramekins, about 3/4 full. Place ramekins in a roasting pan and fill pan with enough water to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake until barely set around the edges, about 40 minutes. You may want to cover loosely with foil to prevent browning. Remove from oven and cool to room temperature. Transfer the ramekins to the refrigerator and chill for 2 hours. Sprinkle 1 Tbs of sugar on top of each chilled custard. Hold a kitchen torch 2 inches above surface to brown the sugar and form a crust. Garnish with cookies and fresh fruit. Serve at once.

 

Variation: Before dividing into ramekins: add 3 oz of shaved dark chocolate for chocolate crème brulee; add 4 slices of crystallized ginger for ginger crème brulee; add 3 slices of orange peel for orange crème brulee. Let steep 20 minutes to infuse the flavor. Strain out the ginger and orange peel before baking.

 

 

 


Gloria Dorson’s Oatmeal Cookies

 

1          cup      Crisco

1          cup      brown sugar

1          cup      sugar

 

2          each     eggs

1          tsp       vanilla

 

1 ½      cup      flour, sifted

1          tsp       salt

1          tsp       soda

 

3          cups     Quick Oats

1          x          chocolate chips, raisins, nuts, as desired

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F. In a large bowl, cream together Crisco, brown sugar and white sugar until light.  Add eggs and vanilla, beat until fluffy.  Add flour, salt and soda to above.  Add quick oats and any other additional items you desire and mix. 

 

Shape into a roll, and chill (or, if in a hurry to eat, just drop on cookie sheet).  Cut into slices and bake 10-12 minutes.

 

 


A Gooey, Decadent Chocolate Cake

 

2 ½      cups     cake flour

1 ½      tsp       baking soda

1          tsp       salt

1 ½      sticks   unsalted butter, at room temperature

2          cups     sugar

3 ½      oz        semisweet or bittersweet dark chocolate, melted and cooled

1          tsp       vanilla extract

2          x          eggs

1 ½      cups     cold water

Chambourd raspberry liqueur, for drizzling

Chocolate Chip Butter Cream, recipe follows

Dark chocolate shavings, for decoration

 

Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and pre-heat the oven to 350 °F.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and the sugar until light and fluffy. Add the cooled chocolate and vanilla and beat for 3 minutes to incorporate. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat for another 3 minutes. Gradually mix in the dry ingredients in 3 batches, alternating with the cold water. Beat for 1 minute after each addition to incorporate the ingredients. Mix until the batter is smooth.

 

Coat 2 (9-inch) round cake pans with non-stick cooking spray. Cut 2 circles of parchment paper to fit the pan bottoms and place them inside the pans; then spray the paper for added non-stick insurance. Pour batter into the prepared pans and smooth the surface with a spatula; the pans should be 2/3 full. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, see Cook's note*.

 

Leave to cool for 40 minutes. Turn the cakes out of the pans and remove the paper. Drizzle them with a few Tbs of Chambourd. With a metal spatula, spread 1/2 cup butter cream on top 1 of the layers. Start in the center and work your way out. Carefully place the second layer on top. Smooth the sides with butter cream, then spread the rest over the top so that the cake is completely covered. Refrigerate for 5 minutes before decorating or cutting.

 

With a large knife scrape some shavings from a block of dark chocolate. Scatter shavings over cake.

 

Chocolate Chip Butter Cream:

3          cups     powdered sugar

7          Tbs      hot water

4          oz        dark chocolate, melted and cooled

2          tsp       vanilla extract

½         stick     unsalted butter, at room temperature

¼         cup      semisweet dark chocolate, finely chopped

 

In the bowl of an electric mixer, dissolve the sugar and water at low speed. Beat in the dark chocolate and vanilla. Add butter gradually in small bits. Mix until everything is completely incorporated. Using a spatula, fold in the chopped chocolate and give a final quick spin.

 

 

 


Graham Cracker Crust

 

21        x          graham crackers

1/3       cup      butter

1 ½      Tbs      sugar

 

Roll crackers in paper or plastic bag, using rolling pin.  Mix with softened butter and sugar.  Press mixture into a buttered pie pan.  Bake in a hot oven tem minutes, or add the filling first, depending on recipe.

 

 


Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies

 

4          Tbs      Canola oil

1 ¼      cups     brown sugar

2          Tbs      milk

1          tsp       vanilla

1          x          egg

 

1 1/8    cups     white flour

1 1/8    cups     oat flour

1          tsp       salt

1          tsp       baking soda

¼         cup      chopped pecans

2          Tbs      ground flax seed

1          cup      mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

 

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F

Mix first 5 ingredients in bowl with beaters.  Slowly add flour, then other ingredients.

Bake for 6 minutes or until golden brown.

 

 

 

 


Hello Dollys

 

½         cup      butter

1 ½      cups     graham cracker crumbs (crush in a zip-lock bag)

1          cup      semi-sweet chocolate chips

1          cup      flaked coconut

1          cup      chopped pecans

1          can       condensed milk (Eagle Brand - 14 oz)

 

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F

 

Melt butter into a 13” x 9” pan.

Sprinkle graham cracker crumbs over the butter.

Then sprinkle the chocolate chips, followed by the coconut, followed by the pecans, making a layer of each.  Finally pour the condensed milk over everything.

 

Bake for 25-30 minutes and let cool.

 

 

 


Individual Strawberry Trifles

 

Really simple and fast, taking just a few minutes on either end (starting and finishing), but still very fresh tasting and very fancy looking.

 

Marinated strawberries:

1          qt         fresh strawberries, halved

1/3       cup      aged balsamic vinegar

 

Whipped cream:

3          cups     heavy cream

2          tsp       vanilla extract

¼         cup      confectioners' sugar

 

1          1 lb      fresh pound cake

1/3       cup      amaretto liqueur

2          x          amaretto cookies, for garnish

Demerara sugar, for garnish

 

 

In a small shallow casserole dish, toss the strawberries with vinegar and let stand at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes. After the strawberries have marinated, check for sweetness, adding sugar if desired.

In a large bowl using an electric mixer, whisk the cream to soft peaks. Add the vanilla and confectioners' sugar. Whip until stiff peaks. Set aside.

 

Using a serrated knife, slice pound cake lengthwise into 1/2-inch thick slices. You will only need 4 slices. Using a 2-inch cookie cutter, cut out circles from each cake slice. Line up 2 high ball glasses and place 1 cake circle in the bottom of each. Brush cakes with amaretto liqueur. Add 2 Tbs of marinated strawberries and spread evenly. Using a different Tbs, add a large dollop of whipped cream and spread evenly. Add a second layer of cake, pressing down lightly. Brush with amaretto liqueur. Add 2 Tbs of marinated strawberries and spread evenly. Top with a large dollop of whipped cream, spreading evenly. Use remaining cake, cream and strawberries to create a more humble trifle dish.

 

Cover trifles with plastic wrap and refrigerate for impromptu indulgence, Keeping in mind that it will store for up to 2 days.

 

To serve, remove and discard plastic wrap. Grate amaretto cookie on top and sprinkle with demerara sugar.

 

 


Katharine Hepburn’s Brownies

 

2          oz        unsweetened chocolate

¼         lb         butter

1          cup      granulated sugar

2          each     eggs

½         tsp       vanilla

 

1          cup      chopped walnuts

¼         cup      all purpose flour

¼         tsp       salt

 

Melt chocolate and butter over very low heat in heavy saucepan.  Remove from heat and stir in sugar, then add eggs and vanilla.  Quickly stir last three ingredients into mixture.  Spread batter into a well-greased 8x8 inch baking pan and bake at 325 °F for 40-45 minutes. Cool on rack.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Lemon Bars

 

For the crust:

½         lb         unsalted butter, at room temperature

½         cup      granulated sugar

2          cups     flour

1/8       tsp       kosher salt

 

For the filling:

6          xl         eggs at room temperature

3          cups     granulated sugar

2          Tbs      grated lemon zest (4 to 6 lemons)

1          cup      freshly squeezed lemon juice

1          cup      flour

Confectioners' sugar, for dusting

 

 

Preheat the oven to 350 °F.

For the crust, cream the butter and sugar until light in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Combine the flour and salt and, with the mixer on low, add to the butter until just mixed. Dump the dough onto a well-floured board and gather into a ball. Flatten the dough with floured hands and press it into a 9 by 13 by 2-inch baking sheet, building up a 1/2-inch edge on all sides. Chill.

 

Bake the crust for 15 to 20 minutes, until very lightly browned. Let cool on a wire rack. Leave the oven on.

For the filling, whisk together the eggs, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and flour. Pour over the crust and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the filling is set. Let cool to room temperature.

Cut into triangles and dust with confectioners' sugar.

 

 

 


Lemon Cornmeal Cookies

 

1          cup      all-purpose flour (about 4 1/2 oz)
1/3       cup      yellow cornmeal
½         tsp       baking soda
¼         tsp       salt
¼         tsp       ground ginger
¾         cup      plus 2 Tbs sugar
6          Tbs      butter, softened
1          large    egg
1          Tbs      grated lemon rind

 

Preheat oven to 350°.

 

Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup, and level with a knife. Combine flour and the next 4 ingredients (through ground ginger); stir with a whisk. Combine sugar and butter in a large bowl, and beat with a mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Scrape sides of the bowl occasionally. Add egg; beat well. Beat in grated lemon rind. Add flour mixture to butter mixture, and beat at medium-low speed just until blended.

 

Spoon about 1 1/2 tsp batter 2 inches apart onto 2 parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 12 minutes or until lightly browned and almost firm. Remove from oven. Cool on pans for 2 minutes or until firm. Remove from pans. Cool completely on a wire rack.

 

 

 


Lemon Frosted Angel Food Cake (Ardith’s)

 

1          cup      sifted Soft as Silk cake flour

1 ½      cup      confectionary sugar

 

1 ½      cup      (12) egg whites

1 ½      tsp       cream of tarter

¼         tsp       salt

 

1          cup      sugar

1 ½      tsp       vanilla

 

5          oz        softened cream cheese

2          Tbs      cream

½         cup      soft butter (1 stick)

2 ½      cups     confectionary sugar

1          Tbs      lemon juice

3          tsp       grated lemon rind (1 whole lemon)

1          tsp       vanilla

 

Sift first two ingredients together THREE times.

 

Beat next three ingredients together until foamy.

 

Add the 1 cup of sugar slowly, 2 Tbs at a time, continue beating until stiff peaks.  When done, fold in the 1 ½ tsp vanilla into the above.

 

Sift in the reserved flour and sugar mixture, folding in gently.

 

Push the batter into an ungreased large tube pan, and level the top with a spatula.

 

Gently run a knife around the sides and the tube, and then through the batter to remove bubbles.

 

Bake at 375 for 30 to 35 minutes until it springs back when pressed gently.  Remove and hang upside down on bottle until cool.

 

Mix last 7 items together and whip until fluffy for the frosting.


Lemon Thyme Wafer Cookies

 

¼         cup      heavy cream

4          strips    lemon zest, 1 1/2-inches long

3          sprigs   thyme, plus 2 Tbs picked thyme for garnishing

4          large    egg whites

1          cup      superfine sugar

1          cup      all-purpose flour, sifted

Pinch salt

5          Tbs      unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1          tsp       pure lemon extract

Nonstick cooking spray

 

Heat oven to 350 °F. Line a baking sheet with a silpat. Spray lightly with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

In a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine the cream, lemon zest and thyme sprigs and bring to a simmer over low heat. Remove saucepan from heat and allow the flavors to infuse the cream, 15 to 20 minutes. Pour cream through a sieve and reserve

 

In a large bowl, whisk together egg whites and sugar until well combined. Whisk in flour and salt. Add melted butter, cream, and lemon extract and whisk until well combined, about 30 seconds.

 

Pour batter into a medium pastry bag fitted with a #11 round tip. Pipe silver dollar-sized (about 1-inch across) circles onto prepared baking sheet, leaving 2 inches between each cookie. Sprinkle each cookie with the picked thyme and bake for 15 minutes, or until edges turn brown. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool.

 

 

 


Lori’s Pumpkin Pie

 

Crust:

3 ½      cups     unsifted white flour

1 ½      tsp       salt

1 ½      tsp       sugar

1          cup      canola oil

 

Filling:

 

Streusel topping:

1/3       cup      while flour

1/3       cup      packed dark brown sugar

¼         cup      regular oats

¼         cup      chopped pecans

¾         tsp       ground cinnamon

1/8       tsp       ground ginger

2          Tbs      chilled butter, cut into small pieces

2-3       tsp       water

 

 

To prepare crust, roll dough to an 11-inch circle.  Fit dough into a 9-inch pie plate coated with cooking spray.  Fold edges under; flute.

 

To prepare filling…

 

To prepare streusel, lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife.  Combine flour and next 5 ingredients (through 1/8 teaspoon ginger) in a bowl.  Cut in butter with a fork or fingertips until crumbly.  Sprinkle with water, tossing with a fork just until lightly moistened.

 

Pour pumpkin filling into crust; sprinkle with streusel.  Place pie on a baking sheet.  Bake at 375 for 50 minutes or until a knife inserted in center comes out clean.  Remove from baking sheet; cool completely on a wire rack.

 

 




Mascarpone and Berry Parfaits

 

½         cup      strawberries

½         cup      raspberries

½         cup      blueberries

½         cup      blackberries

4          Tbs      Cassis

1          8-oz     container mascarpone cheese

1          cup      heavy cream

¼         cup      confectioners' sugar

1          Tbs      vanilla

Whole strawberries and mint sprigs, for garnish

 

In a bowl combine berries and cassis. Let macerate for 30 minutes. In a mixer combine mascarpone, heavy cream, confectioners' sugar and vanilla. Whip until firm peak stage. Chill. In wine glasses make layers alternating berries and mascarpone cream, finishing off with mascarpone cream. Garnish with whole strawberries and mint sprig.

 

 


Mascarpone Custards with Summer Berries

 

8          large    egg yolks

1          cup      sugar

¾         cup      sweet Marsala, PLUS

2          Tbs      sweet Marsala

1 ½      cups     brewed espresso, cooled

4          dozen 1 1/2-inch Italian amaretti cookies (see Note)

2          cups     mascarpone, at room temperature (1 pound)

2          cups     mixed fresh berries, such as blueberries, blackberries and raspberries

 

You will need eight 3 1/2-inch ramekins.

 

1. In a large stainless steel bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Set the bowl over a medium saucepan of simmering water. Gradually whisk in the Marsala and whisk constantly until the mixture triples in volume, about 8 minutes. Remove the bowl from the pan and continue whisking for another minute.

 

2. Pour the espresso into a shallow bowl. Dip the amaretto cookies in the espresso one by one and use them to line the bottoms of eight 31/2-inch ramekins; use any broken cookies to fill the spaces.

 

3. In a medium bowl, beat the mascarpone with a rubber spatula until creamy. Add the Marsala custard and fold together until smooth. Spoon the mixture into the ramekins and refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours. Garnish with the berries and serve.

 

MAKE AHEAD The mascarpone custards can be refrigerated, covered, for up to 2 days. Serve chilled.


Mixed Berry Streusel Pie

 

While any combination of strawberries, blackberries, blueberries and raspberries will work here, don’t use more than about 2 cups of strawberries as they tend to be watery.  If the berries aren’t sweet enough, you can add an extra ¼ cup of sugar to the filling at the end of the mixing process (before you put it into the crust).

 

Crust & Streusel

1 ½      cups     all-purpose flour

9          x          graham crackers

½         tsp       salt

12        Tbs      (½ sticks) unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces and softened

2          oz        cream cheese

1          tsp       vanilla extract

½         cup      old-fashioned oats

½         cup      packed light brown sugar

 

Filling

6          cups     mixed fresh berries

¾         cups     granulated sugar

½         tsp       grated lemon zest

3          Tbs      Minute tapioca

 

For the crust and streusel – Grease a 9-inch pie plate.  Process flour, graham crackers and salt in food processor until finely ground.  Add butter, cream cheese and vanilla and pulse until dough forms.  Remove 2 cups dough from food processor (leaving remaining dough in bowl of food processor) and turn out onto lightly floured surface.  Flatten dough into 6-inch disk and transfer to prepared pie plate.  Press dough evenly into pie plate and flute edges.  Cover dough with plastic and refrigerate until firm, at least one hour or up to 24 hours.

 

Add oats and brown sugar to food processor with remaining dough and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meat.  Transfer to bowl and use fingers to pinch topping into peanut-sized clumps; cover and refrigerate streusel.

 

For the filling – Adjust oven rack to lowest position and heat oven to 350 °F.  Cook 2 cups berries in saucepan over medium-high heat until juicy, about 3 minutes.  Stir in lemon zest and sugar and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes.  You should be able to drag a spatula across the bottom and leave a clean trail.  Let cool 5 minutes, then gently toss cooked berry mixture, remaining berries and tapioca in large bowl until combined.

 

Transfer berry mixture to chilled crust.  Scatter oat mixture evenly over pie.  Bake pie on rimmed baking sheet until fruit is bubbling around edges and streusel is browned and crisp, 45 to 55 minutes.  Cool on rack 30 minutes, then refrigerate until set, at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours.  Serve.

 


Mocha Layer Cake With Chocolate-Rum Cream Filling

 

Filling and Topping

4          cups     whipping cream

¼         cup      unsalted butter

¼         cup      sugar

20        oz        semisweet chocolate, finely chopped; + 2 oz, chopped separately

1/3       cup      dark rum

2          tsp       vanilla extract

 

Syrup

¼         cup      water

2          Tbs      sugar

2          Tbs      dark rum

 

Cake

1 ½      tsp       vanilla extract

¾         tsp       instant coffee powder

2/3       cup      cake flour

3          Tbs      unsweetened cocoa powder

½         tsp       baking soda

3          large    eggs, separated

¾         cup      sugar

¼         tsp       cream of tartar

¼         tsp       salt

 

For filling and topping:

Stir first 3 ingredients in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves and cream comes to simmer. Remove from heat. Add 20 oz chocolate; whisk until melted and smooth. Whisk in rum and vanilla. Transfer 1 cup warm chocolate mixture to small bowl; whisk remaining 2 oz chocolate into mixture in bowl and set aside for topping. Cover; let stand at room temperature. Transfer remaining chocolate mixture to large bowl to use as filling; chill until cold and thick, at least 6 hours and up to 1 day.

 

For syrup:

Stir water and sugar in small saucepan over low heat just until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat; mix in rum. Cover and let stand up to 1 day.

 

For cake:

Preheat oven to 350 °F. Butter 9x9x2-inch metal baking pan. Line bottom with waxed paper; butter paper. Combine vanilla and coffee powder in cup; swirl to dissolve coffee. Sift flour, cocoa, and baking soda into small bowl. Using electric mixer, beat egg yolks and 1/2 cup sugar in medium bowl until very thick and light in color, about 3 minutes. Beat in vanilla-coffee mixture. Using clean dry beaters, beat egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt in large bowl until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining 1/4 cup sugar, beating until stiff but not dry. Fold 1/3 of whites into yolk mixture. Fold in half of flour mixture. Fold in half of remaining whites, then remaining flour mixture, then remaining whites. Transfer batter to prepared pan; gently spread to even thickness.

 

Bake cake until puffed and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 18 minutes. Cool in pan on rack (cake may shrink slightly).

 

Cut around pan to loosen cake. Turn out onto work surface; peel off paper. Using long serrated knife, cut cake horizontally in half. Place 1 half, cut side up, on platter. Drizzle half of syrup (about 3 1/2 Tbs) over. Using electric mixer, beat cold chocolate filling until thick and lighter in color, less than 1 minute. Spread all of filling evenly over cake layer, aligning with sides of cake (filling will be about 1 inch thick). Drizzle remaining syrup over cut side of second cake layer. Place layer, syrup side down, atop filling; press to adhere. Rewarm topping over low heat just until pourable. Pour topping onto top center of cake. Using small spatula, spread topping to edges, being careful to keep it from spilling over. Chill cake up to 1 day, covering loosely with foil or with cake dome after 2 hours.

 

This ultra-rich dessert is inspired by the classic Rigó Jancsi cake, named for the legendary Hungarian Gypsy violinist. Make it one day ahead to allow the flavors to meld.

 

 

 

 


Molten Chocolate Cakes with Raspberries and Cream

 

1 ½      tsp       unsalted butter, plus 1/4 pound (1 stick)

4          tsp       all-purpose flour, plus 2 Tbs

6          oz        bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped

2          Tbs      cold heavy cream

2          Tbs      confectioners' sugar

2          large    eggs

2          large    egg yolks

¼         cup      sugar

1          tsp       vanilla extract

Pinch salt

½         cup      cold heavy cream

2          Tbs      confectioners' sugar

1          Tbs      nut-flavored liqueur

½         pint      fresh raspberries

4          sprigs   mint

Sweetened cocoa, as garnish

 

Preheat the oven to 450 °F. Grease and flour 4 (6-oz) ramekins or baking dishes with the 1 1/2 tsp of butter and 1 tsp of flour in each, tapping out the excess flour. Set on a baking sheet.

In a double boiler, or a metal bowl set over a pan of simmering water, melt the remaining 1/4 pound of butter with the chocolate, cream, and powdered sugar, stirring until smooth. Remove from the heat.

In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, egg yolks, sugar, vanilla, and salt until thick ribbons form, about 3 minutes. Sift 2 Tbs flour into the egg mixture and fold together. Fold the chocolate into the egg mixture. Divide among the prepared dishes and bake until the sides of the cake are set and the tops are puffed but still soft, about 12 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let cool in the ramekins for 2 minutes, then unmold onto dessert plates.

Meanwhile, in a bowl whip the cream until beginning to form soft peaks. Add the sugar and nut liqueur and beat until stiff peaks start to form. Spoon a dollop of the whipped cream on each unmolded cake, and garnish each plate with raspberries and a sprig of mint. Sprinkle cocoa over the cakes, and serve.

 

 

 


Poppy Seed Cake

 

1          pkg      Duncan Hines Deluxe Yellow Cake

1          pkg      Jell-O Instant Butterscotch pudding

1          cup      Poppy Seeds

4          x          eggs

1          cup      cold water

½         cup      vegetable oil

 

Poppy seeds are expensive if you buy them from the grocery store – they can run a couple bucks for a small jar.  Try a spice store – at ours down the street you can get a cup for maybe $1.00, so search around so you don’t go bankrupt on the poppy seeds.

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F

 

Mix dry ingredients together in a bowl, then add remaining ingredients and beat for 5 minutes.  Bake in a well greased pan (we use an Angel food Cake pan) for 60 minutes at 350º. 

 

 

 


Ruby’s Pumpkin Pie

 

1 1/3    cups     sifted flour

1          tsp       salt

¼         cup      finely chopped nuts

1/3       cup      oil

3          Tbs      cold whole milk

 

1          Tsp      gelatin

¼         cup      cold water

¾         cup      brown sugar

½         tsp       salt

2          tsp       cinnamon

½         tsp       ground ginger

½         tsp       allspice

1 1/3    cups     pumpkin

3          large    egg yolks

½         cups     milk

 

3          large    egg whites

3          Tbs      sugar

¼         tsp       cream of tarter.

 

Mix first 5 ingredients (pie crust), roll between wax paper and transfer to a pie pan, prick all over with a fork.  Bake at 450 for 12 to 15 minutes.

 

Mix gelatin and water, and let set.

 

Combine next 8 items (to milk) and bring to a boil.  Cook 1 minute.  Remove from heat and add softened gelatin.  Let cool.  Beat until smooth.  Create a meringue from the last three items.  Carefully fold in the meringue into the pumpkin mixture.  Pile into the shell and refrigerate.

 

 




Short Cake (Shelley’s)

 

2          cups     flour

1          cup      sugar

1          tsp       baking powder

½         tsp       baking soda

½         tsp       salt

½         cup      butter

¾         cup      milk

1          Tbs      sugar

 

 

Preheat oven to 350.  Grease a 9x9 pan. 

 

Combine dry ingredients.  Cut in the butter and mix until it resembles corn meal.  Make a well in the dry ingredients.  Put ¼ cup of mix in a cup or measuring cup with the milk, stir together, then pour into the well and mix until moist.  Pour into baking pan.  Sprinkle top with sugar.  Bake for 45 minutes.


Snicker doodles (Andrea Gardner’s)

 

2          x          eggs

½         cup      margarine

½         cup      Crisco

1 ½      cup      sugar

2 ¾      cup      flour

2          tsp       cream of tartar

1          tsp       baking soda

¼         tsp       salt

 

2          Tbs      Sugar

1          tsp       cinnamon

 

Mix first 8 ingredients together thoroughly.  Roll into balls the size of walnuts.  Roll in sugar and cinnamon mixture.  Bake in 350 °F oven for 8-10 minutes on ungreased cookie sheet.  Makes 4 dozen.


Sour Cream Cheesecake

 

                        ----Crust:----                    

  21      x          graham cracker squares, crumbled  (10 ½ full pieces (OR 5 ¼ pieces???))        

  1/3     cup      unsalted butter, melted, plus additional, for brushing pan

  1 ½    Tbs      sugar

 

                        ----Filling:----                  

  13      oz        cream cheese, softened (1 large and 1 small package)

  1        cup      sugar                             

  1        tsp       vanilla extract                   

  2        x          eggs, well beaten

 

                        ----Topping:----                  

  18      oz        sour cream (one large tub)

  4        Tbs      sugar                             

  1        tsp       vanilla extract                   

 

Preheat oven to 300 °F. Brush some of the melted butter around a 9-inch pie dish.

 

In a small bowl, combine crumbled graham crackers, the melted butter, and sugar. Press the mixture into the bottom of the pie dish. You can either bake or not bake the crust.  If you choose to, bake for 10 minutes (Ardith does not bake). Cool.

 

In a bowl, mix cream cheese, sugar, vanilla and well beaten eggs until mixed well.  Pour into cool pie shell.  Bake for 35 minutes.  Let cool.

 

In a bowl, combine sour cream, sugar and vanilla, mix well, and pour on top of cooled pie.  Refrigerate.

 


Strawberry Pie (Ardith’s)

 

1          x          9-inch pre-cooked pie shell      

2          cups     hulled crushed strawberries

2          cups     hulled halved strawberries

3          Tbs      cornstarch

¾         cups     sugar

2          Tbs      lemon juice

 

In sauce pan, add crushed strawberries, cornstarch, sugar and lemon juice on low heat.  Heat until bubbling.  Stir until mixture is clear and thickened.  Cool.  Stir in halved berries and pile into pie shell.  Turn halved berries up so cut side is down (looks better).

 

Chill until set.  Serve with whipped cream.

 

 


Tiramisu

 

6          x          egg yolks

3          Tbs      sugar

1          lb         mascarpone cheese

1 ½      cups     strong espresso, cooled

2          tsp       dark rum

24        x          packaged ladyfingers

½         cup      bittersweet chocolate shavings, for garnish

 

In a large bowl, using an electric mixer with whisk attachment, beat egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale, about 5 minutes. Add mascarpone cheese and beat until smooth. Add 1 Tbs of espresso and mix until thoroughly combined.

In a small shallow dish, add remaining espresso and rum. Dip each ladyfinger into espresso for only 5 seconds. Letting the ladyfingers soak too long will cause them to fall apart. Place the soaked ladyfinger on the bottom of a 13 by 9 inch baking dish, breaking them in half if necessary in order to fit the bottom.

 

Spread evenly 1/2 of the mascarpone mixture over the ladyfingers. Arrange another layer of soaked ladyfingers and top with remaining mascarpone mixture.

 

Cover tiramisu with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, up to 8 hours.

 

Before serving, sprinkle with chocolate shavings.

 

 


Tiramisu Italiano

 

7          x          egg yolks

½         cup      sugar

1/3       cup      sweet marsala, plus 2 Tbs

8          oz        mascarpone, softened to room temperature

1          cup      heavy cream

1          cup      brewed espresso coffee

1          oz        dark chocolate

¼         cup      rum

1          tsp       natural vanilla extract

48        x          ladyfingers

¼         cup      unsweetened cocoa powder

 

Cream together egg yolks and sugar in a heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Add 1/3 cup of the marsala and continue to whisk until mixture is thick and doubled in volume. This is basically a zabaglione. Remove from heat. Stir in the mascarpone until completely blended.

In a chilled bowl, whip the heavy cream to soft peaks. Fold the whipped cream into the mascarpone mixture, to lighten.

 

In a small saucepan, combine espresso, chocolate, rum, vanilla, and remaining 2 Tbs marsala. Heat gently, and stir to dissolve the chocolate. Then, chill the mixture to cool it down, about 15 minutes. Quickly dip each ladyfinger in the chilled coffee mixture and arrange in a single layer on a 9 by 13-inch glass baking pan. Do not soak the cookies or they will become too moist. Spread 1/2 the mascarpone cream evenly with a spatula on top of the dipped ladyfingers. Repeat with a second layer of dipped ladyfingers and remaining mascarpone cream. Sprinkle top with cocoa powder. Refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.

 

 


Turtle Brownies

 

For brownie layer

4          oz        semisweet chocolate, chopped

1          oz        unsweetened chocolate, chopped

1          stick     unsalted butter, cut into pieces

1          cup      packed brown sugar

1          tsp       vanilla

2          large    eggs

¾         cup      all-purpose flour

2          Tbs      all-purpose flour

¼         tsp       baking powder

½         tsp       salt

 

For caramel-pecan layer

¾         cup      granulated sugar

1/3       cup      light corn syrup

3          Tbs      water

1/3       cup      heavy cream

1          tsp       vanilla

1 ½      cups     pecans (6 oz)

 

For garnish if desired: 1 oz semisweet chocolate

 

Preheat oven to 350 °F. and butter and flour a 9-inch square baking pan, knocking out excess flour.

 

Make brownie layer:

In a heavy 1 1/2-quart saucepan melt chocolate and butter over low heat, stirring, until smooth and remove pan from heat. Cool mixture to lukewarm and stir in brown sugar and vanilla. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well with a wooden spoon until mixture is glossy and smooth. In a bowl sift together flour, baki