Thursday, December 27, 2012

Goat Cheese Crepe Ravioli


Crepes Ingredients:
2 cups flour
1 cup beef broth (from 32 oz carton) remaining broth will be used in sauce
1 cup water
3 eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp salt
cooking spray

Crepe Instructions:
1.  Whisk all ingredients in large mixing bowl
2.  Heat small round non stick pan on low/med heat, sprayed with cooking spray between each crepe
3.  Ladle enough batter to bottom of pan, tilting pan so batter thinly covers bottom of pan
4.  Crepe is finished when it can easily be removed from pan.  To remove gently flip pan over a piece of wax paper so crepe releases from pan.  Seperate each crepe between a clean piece of wax paper.
5.  Cover and put aside
Makes approximately 10 crepes

Goat Cheese Filling:
1/2 cup goat cheese
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1 egg
1 Tbs fresh chopped parsely
salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions for Goat Cheese mixture:
1.  Mix all ingredients in bowl, refrigerate until ready to use.

Sauce Ingredients:
olive oil for sauteing
2 Tbs butter
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
3/4 cups raisins or chopped dates
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp fresh rosemary
beef broth, remaining from the 32 oz carton
1/4 cup white cooking wine
2 Tbs flour
8 ozs mushrooms, sliced

Sauce Instructions:
1.  Add oil and butter to large saute pan, heat on med
2.  Add garlic and onion, saute until soft
3.  Add raisins, parsely and rosemary, saute for additional few mins
4.  Add contents of saute pan to small food processor or blender and puree.  Add broth to loosen, if needed.
5.  Add wine to saute pan to deglaze, stir.
6.  Add puree back to saute pan, stir to incorporate
7.  Whisk in flour
8.  Add mushroom, stir
9.  Reduce heat to low and simmer while assembling crepes.

To assemble Crepe Ravioli:  Approximately 10 crepes
1.  With a knife, divide filling in half in bowl.  Each half of filling will make 5 crepes, total of 10
2.  Fill center of each crepe with approx. 1 Tbs of filling. 
3.  Fold one side of crepe over filling, fold opposite side over filling.  Now fold over both ends to center creating a little pillow.
4.  Place folded side down into large, greased baking dish.
5.  Pour sauce over top of crepe ravioli, moving each ravioli gently so sauce gets underneath each ravioli
6.  Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for approx. 30 mins.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

BBQ POPCORN


1 stick butter
2 cups brown sugar
1 cup bbq sauce, ( I use Outta the Park, original)
1/2 cup corn syrup (optional, honey)
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp fresh jalepino, chopped
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups almonds
5 quarts popped popcorn


1.  Preheat oven to 250 degrees F (95 degrees C).
2.  Place popcorn and almonds in a very large bowl. 
3.  In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in brown sugar, bbq sauce, corn syrup, ginger, jalepino and salt. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil without stirring 4 minutes.
4.  Remove from heat and stir in soda and vanilla.
5.  Pour in a thin stream over popcorn, stirring to coat.
6.  Place in two large cookie sheets and bake in preheated oven, stirring every 15 minutes, for 1 hour. 
7.  Remove from oven and let cool completely on cool surface, before breaking into pieces.

Note:  I use very large commercial cookie sheets.  Make sure to spread popcorn out very thin.  This way popcorn evenly bakes for sugar to caramelize. 

Note:  Optional: Add 1/2 tsp of Lemon Grass for different twist in flavor also.

BBQ ASIAN POPCORN



  • 1 cup butter

  • 2 cups brown sugar

  • 1/2 cup corn syrup

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 5 quarts popped popcorn



  • Preheat oven to 250 degrees F (95 degrees C). Place popcorn in a very large bowl.In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in brown sugar, corn syrup and salt. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil without stirring 4 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in soda and vanilla. Pour in a thin stream over popcorn, stirring to coat.Place in two large shallow baking dishes and bake in preheated oven, stirring every 15 minutes, for 1 hour. Remove from oven and let cool completely before breaking into pieces.

    Thursday, December 13, 2012

    White Bean Avocado Soup w/White Bean Pico de Gallo

     
     
    2 Tbs olive oil
    2 Tbs butter, optional
    3 cloves garlic, chopped
    1 cup leeks, chopped
    1 cup celery, chopped
    2 cups avocado, diced (1/2 cup reserved for Pico de Gallo)
    2 cups white bean, cooked  (1/2 cup reserved for Pico de Gallo)
    1/2 cup fresh cilantro (reserve 1/4 cup for Pico de Gallo)
    3 limes, juiced and zest
    32 ozs chicken broth (or vegetable broth) (reserve 1/2 for pureeing)
    1 large ripe tomato, seeded and diced
    2 Tbs red onion, diced
    salt and pepper, to taste
     
    Directions:
    1.  In large saute pan heat oil and butter on med. heat.
    2.  Add garlic, leeks and celery, cook until soft.
    3.  Add avocado, white beans, cilantro, lime juice (from 2 limes) and broth.  Heat slightly
    4.  Add contents of saute pan to blender or food processor.  Blend till smooth.  Add remaining broth as needed.
    5.  Return to saute pan, simmer on low.  Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
    6.  Serve in soup bowl, add 1-2 spoonfuls of Pico de Gallo to center and garnish with lime zest.
     
    White Bean Pico de Gallo:
    To bowl add remaining avocado, beans, cilantro, juice from 1 lime, tomato, red onion, salt and pepper.
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

    Monday, November 12, 2012

    Butternut Squash Casserole




    This is my Butternut Squash recipe.  I have been making butternut squash for years.  Lately, I have been using ground up granola as a breading in my casseroles.  I think it gives the casseroles that little bit of a hardy kick.  It is really tasty and goes well with just about any vegetable. 

    Ingredients:
    1 large butternut squash, cubed
    1 stick butter, chopped
    1/2 cup onion, chopped
    2 garlic cloves, chopped
    1/4 cup grated cheese
    3 basil leaves, large, chopped
    1/4 pound american cheese
    2 cups granola, ground
    1 cup chicken broth
    salt and pepper, to taste

    Directions:
    1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees
    2.  In large casserole dish add 1/2 stick chopped butter
    3.  In large mixing bowl add squash, onion, garlic, grated cheese and basil.  Season with salt and pepper. Toss well.
    4.  Add squash mixture to casserole dish
    5.  Layer American Cheese, then sprinkle ground granola.  Pour broth over top and remaining butter.
    6.  Bake for approx. 1 hour.

    Sunday, October 21, 2012

    Pancake Cream Bacon Stack




    2 cups Hungry Jack Pancake mix
    3 cups water
    1 cup heavy cream
    1 cup powder sugar
    4 ozs cream cheese
    1 lb bacon, fried
    2 cups Hungry Jack Syrup
    2 cups peaches


    1.  Whisk pancake mix and water in large bowl, mix well.  Make pancakes according to instructions on box.
    2.  In separate bowl, with electric mixer, whip heavy cream until peak forms
    3.  Add sugar and cream cheese, mix well.
    4.  Fry bacon, drain on paper towels, dice into small pieces

    To Layer Pancakes:
    1.  Drizzle syrup at bottom of each individual serving dish
    2.  Place desired amount on pancakes on top of syrup.
    3.  Place cream in between each pancake.
    4.  Finish each stack with dollop of cream, sprinkled bacon pieces.
    5.  Serve with helping of sliced peaches.

    Chocolate Maple Mascarpone Bacon Cake




    1 box Pillsbury Chocolate Box Cake mix.  Mix according to instructions on box for 2 round cakes.
    2 cups heavy whipping cream
    8 ozs mascarpone cheese, softened
    1 cup powdered sugar
    1/4 cup Hungry Jack Syrup
    1 can Pillsbury Chocolate Frosting
    1 lb bacon, fried and diced

    1.  Bake cake according to instructions on box for two round cakes.  Cool, slice each in half horizontally.
    2.  Fry bacon, drain on paper towels, dice into small pieces
    3.  With electric mixer, whip cream until peaks form.  Add cheese, sugar and syrup, mix well.
    4.  Stack layers with about 1/2 cup cream mixture in between each piece.  Do not frost top piece with cream.
    5.  Frost entire outside of cake with chocolate frosting.
    6.  Add bacon pieces around sides. ( I stenciled a maple leaf on the top of cake).

    Tuesday, October 9, 2012

    GIVEAWAY!!! OUTTA THE PARK BBQ SAUCE


       "OUTTA THE PARK BBQ SAUCE"

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    THE MORE STEPS YOU COMPLETE THE MORE ENTRIES YOU RECEIVE.



    Friday, September 21, 2012

    Italian Egg Drop Pasta








    Legends from Europe





    I was asked to create a dish using one of the Legends of Europe
    The key ingredient given to me was. 

    Grana Padano

    What is Grana Padano?


    Type of Milk:

    Cow, unpasteurized

    Origin:

    Italy, Po River Valley in Emilia Romagna

    Monks in the Po Valley started making Grana Padano more than a thousand years ago and the same recipe is used today. The name "Grana" comes from the word grain and refers to the grainy texture of the cheese.

    The recipe and process of making Grana Padano is protected by its P.D.O. status. P.D.O stands for Protected Designation of Origin and is a set of guidelines that insure the quality and authenticity of cheese sold under the name Grana Padano. The guidelines outline how the cheese is made and how long it is aged. Each wheel is tested for aroma and flavor before it can be branded with the P.D.O seal.

    Rind:

    Grana Padano has a natural rind that is technically edible, but too hard to eat. Some people like to throw a rind of Grana Padano or Parmigiano-Reggiano into a bowl of soup. The rind melts into the soup, adding flavor and texture.
    A natural rind is a rind that develops on the outside of the cheese as the wheel ages. Many semi-firm or hard cheeses have natural rinds. The rinds can be thin, like on some Cheddar cheeses, or thick, like on a wheel of Parmigiano-Reggiano or Grana Padano.

    Flavor:

    Grana Padano is sold at three different ages: 12 months, 16 months and 20 months. Each share a nutty, buttery quality and a sharp fruitiness with a pleasantly salty finish. The flavors become more intense with age and the texture becomes more granular.

    Uses and Pairings:


    Grana Padano can be thinly shaved so it melts on the tongue, grated into dishes, or if you're really hungry simply cut yourself a large chunk and take a bite. Grana Padano pairs well with figs and dried fruit, sliced apples, or a drizzle of honey. For a savory snack pair with walnuts, olives or cured meat.
    The fruity, nutty flavor and rich texture of Grana Padano pairs well with a full-bodied, aromatic white wine or a big Italian red like Barolo. The saltiness of Grana Padano can pair well with dessert wines.
    For cooking, Grana Padano can be used in any recipe that calls for a hard cheese.

    This is the recipe I decided to make.



    Italian Egg Drop Pasta

    Why did I decide to make this dish?

    Because of Grana Padano being the key ingredient, I really wanted this ingredient to stand out.  The only way I can do this was to present it in a dish that was not overflowing with different flavors, masking this delightful nutty, grainy cheese.  This is a complete meal all in one dish.  My Italian Grandmother used to make this for us growing up.  Over the years I have made this recipe for my children.  Now, I make it for my Grandchildren.  Not only is it full of protein, delicious and flavorful, but it is also the most inexpensive dish I have ever made.



    Ingredients:
    1/2 pound favorite pasta
    5 cups chicken broth
    4 eggs, large
    1/2 cup Grana Padano Cheese, grated (reserve half for topping)
    salt, to taste

    Directions:
    1.  In large pot heat broth, bring to boil. 
    2.  Add pasta, cook til al dente.  "DO NOT" drain.  Should still be some liquid left over in pot that has not boiled out.  Additional broth may be added.  
    3.  Add eggs, stir.  Add cheese, stir.  Add salt, if desired. 
    4.  Top with reserved Grana Padano Cheese....Serve!!!!

    There you have it...SIMPLE!  And the most incredible, inexpensive meal you will ever make.

    Thursday, September 20, 2012

    White Bean and Escarole Peach Brushcetta



    I have been asked to create an original recipe using a "Legend" from Europe"



    The product I was given to cook with is Grana Padano


    What is Grana Padano?

    Grana Padano Cheese is a firm cheese that is usually served grated over meals. It is made with partially skimmed milk in five different regions of northern Italy, all north of the Po River. Grana Padano translated literally means "Grainy cheese of the Po River Valley." Generally, firm cheeses are quite sharp and pungent in flavor, making only a small amount necessary. Grana Padano has a slightly more subtle flavor and is less nutty and salty than other firm cheeses.






    • Grana Padano is a crumbly cheese, similar to Parmesan, and is used in similar ways. Grana Padano can be eaten on its own, as part of a cheese course.
      Mostly, however, the cheese is grated and used as an ingredient or garnish for other dishes, such as in pastas, soups and souffles. Grana Padano can also be shaved thin and used in dishes such as a zucchini carpaccio: layers of very thinly sliced zucchini covered with salt, lemon juice and olive oil, and sprinkled with cheese, fresh herbs and sometimes pine nuts.

      Grana Padano is available in Italian supermarkets, imported food and specialty markets, and some large grocery stores that carry a wide variety of cheeses.






      This is my recipe that I had created

    White Bean and Escarole Peach Brushcetta
    with a drizzle of peach Balsamic Reduction
    topped with our key ingredient:
    Grana Padano


    Recipe:
    1 loaf Italian bread, sliced thin 
    1 head escarole, rinsed well
    1 can white beans, drained 
    2 peaches, brushed with butter, grilled
    Grana Padano Cheese, grated
    Peach Balsamic Glaze (see recipe)

    Directions:  
    1.  Slice bread, rub with garlic, drizzle olive oil...then toast.
    2.  Saute escarole in olive oil until soft.
    3.  Add beans, toss. Season with salt
    4.  Slice peaches, coat with butter, grill. Cover to keep warm (put aside)
    5.  Make glaze..see recipe     
        
    Assemble Brushcetta: by placing all ingredients on top of sliced bread, then drizzle with glaze.
    But "DO NOT forget to top brushcetta with our "key ingredient".....grated Grana Padano Cheese

    To make Peach Balsamic Glaze:
    In sauce pan, over medium heat add 1 cup balsamic vinegar, 2 Tbs brown sugar, salt, to taste, 1/4 cup peeled peaches.( I used smaller pieces)  Saute for few mins then add to small food processor or blender to puree.  Add back to sauce pan to keep warm.  Should be thick consistency.  



    Friday, September 14, 2012

    Apple Blueberry Brie Pie



    2 sheets pie crust
    8 ozs brie cheese, softened
    3 cups apples, sliced thin
    4 ozs blueberries, fresh, rinsed
    4 Tbs sugar
    2 tsp cinnamon
    1/4 tsp salt
    1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
    1 egg white

    1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    2.  Place one sheet of crust in greased pie dish
    3.  Press brie cheese evenly on bottom of pie crust in dish
    4.  In large mixing bowl add apples, blueberries, sugar cinnamon, salt and walnuts...toss
    5.  Add to pie plate on top of brie
    6.  Add second piece of crust to top, sealing edges together buy pinching crust
    7.  Press lightly with fork tines around the edges of the crust
    8.  Add egg white to small bowl and brush top of pie crust with egg white for shine
    9.  Bake for approx. 60 mins. or until apples are soft.

    Serve warm by the slice or spread on crackers as an appetizer

    Cheddar Onion Potato Bake


    3 lbs red skin potatoes, sliced and cooked
    1 container of Dean's Cheddar Cheese Dip
    1/2 contain of Dean's French Onion Dip
    1 stick Gold n' Soft Margarine Stick, softened
    1 tsp L.B. Jamison's Ham Soup Base
    1 cup water
    salt and pepper, to taste
    1 cup sour cream
    1/2 cup parsley, chopped

    1.  Cook potatoes in boiling water until soft, drain.
    2.  In large mixing bowl whisk together dips, margarine, base and water.
    3.  Add potatoes and toss
    4.  Season with salt and pepper, toss.
    5.  Pour into large, greased baking dish
    6.  Bake in Preheated oven for 30 mins, uncovered.
    7.  Serve hot, garnished with sour cream and fresh parsley.

    Fruity Flounder with Strawberry Balsamic Reduction


    4-6 Flounder Fillets
    1 pkg strawberries, (fresh and cleaned with stems removed) Reserve 4-6 large pieces for garnish
    1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
    3 Tbs brown sugar
    salt to taste
    1 cup each of assorted fruit (oranges, apples, blueberries) (washed and sliced)

    1.  Broil fish in oven until flaky.  Remove and cover
    2.  Place strawberries, vinegar, sugar and salt in small sauce pan. Stir and simmer on medium heat, 5 mins and pour into food processor or blender to puree
    3.  Return to pan and simmer on low until thickens.
    4.  Prepare fruit and assemble on plate.
    5.  Drizzle strawberry reduction on plate and place fish on top.  Serve

    Makes 4-6 servings.

    Saturday, August 18, 2012

    Mesquite Mediterranean Ground Chicken Burgers



    I love the Mediterranean flavors of Cilantro and Feta Cheese.   These burgers are super moist by adding the cilantro, feta cheese and scallions right into the ground chicken mixture.  These are super great tasting, healthy and guilt free. The crisp crunch of the fresh cucumber is a nice asset.


    2 lbs ground chicken
    1/2 cup cilantro, fresh chopped
    1/4 cup scallions, chopped
    4 ozs Feta cheese, cubed
    salt and pepper, to taste
    6 slices red onion
    6 slices fresh red tomatoes
    1 cup shredded lettuce
    1 cucumber, sliced
    1/2 cup banana peppers
    1/2 cup roasted red bell  peppers
    6 Tbs mayonnaise
    6 sesame seed hamburger buns.

    In a bowl combine ground chicken, cilantro, scallions and feta cheese, add salt and pepper, to taste.  Mix well.  Mold into 6 individual patties.  Grill on mesquite flavored charcoal grill. (or mesquite flavored gas grill).

    Place bottom part of buns on platter.  Place a grilled patty on top of each bottom bun. On top of each patty add, onion, tomato, lettuce, cucumber, banana peppers, roasted bell peppers and mayonnaise.  Add top bun to each burger.  Enjoy!!!

    Make sure to season mixture before grilling patties.  Mixture can be made ahead of time and refrigerated to marinade flavors.

    Saturday, August 11, 2012

    Lobster Mac and Cheese


    Ingredients:
    1 lb cooked pasta ( I like medium shells) Cooked a little harder than al dente.
    Note: Pasta will cook further in sauce when baked in oven.
    3 lobster tails, raw
    1/2 stick butter
    4 Tbs olive oil
    1 cup milk or half and half
    8 ozs cheddar cheese
    8 ozs american cheese ( I like Land o' Lakes)
    1/8 cup grated cheese (I use combo of Romano and Parm)
    1 tsp chicken bouillon
    1/8 cup wine cooking wine
    salt and pepper, to taste
    2 cups crushed potato chips or ritz cracker.  (We used Lay's Honey BBQ Chips)  Ritz work great too.

    Directions:
    1.  Use medium sauce pan, heat butter and oil on low heat.
    2.  Add tails and saute until turns pink, remove from pan
    3.  Add milk, cheeses, bouillon and wine, simmer on low until cheeses are melted.
    4.  Peel lobster meat from shell, dice and add to sauce, stir.
    5.  add salt and pepper, to taste
    6.  Add cooked pasta to sauce, stir
    7.  Add to baking dish
    8.  Add crushed chips to top of mac.
    Bake until crumbs are crispy.  Approx. 20 mins.

    Note:  Because of the salt content in ingredients, make sure to test dish before adding additional salt.

    Thursday, August 9, 2012

    Red Lentil and Flaxseed Pasta

    Red Lentil and Flax Seed Pasta
    with anchovy and prosciutto 
    in a vodka cream sauce


    This recipe was pretty cool to make.  Combination of all these wonderful flavors going on.  You have the salty from the anchovies, smoky from the prosciutto, nutty from the lentils and flax seeds and rich and creamy from the cream cheese.  A delightful dish!!!!    Why don't you give it a try.

    Ingredients:
    1 cup Red Lentil
    1/2 cup flax seeds
    1 small onion, chopped
    12 oz prosciutto, or other bacon, chopped
    2 garlic cloves, chopped
    2 ozs anchovies, packed in olive oil
    1/4 cup vodka
    1 can (28 ozs) crushed tomatoes
    1-1 1/2 cans water, (use empty crushed tomato can)
    3 large basil leaves, chopped
    4 ozs cream cheese, (half package)
    grated cheese
    salt and pepper, to taste

    1.  In large skillet, on medium heat, saute lentils and flax seeds in olive oil.
    2.  Add onion and prosciutto, saute until prosciutto is slightly crispy.
    3.  Add garlic and anchovies, saute for few mins.
    4.  Add vodka..stirring to deglaze pan.
    5.  Add tomatoes, water and basil, stir and simmer covered for 1 hour (or until lentils are soft)
    6.  Stir in cream cheese and grated cheese, taste.
    7.  Add salt and pepper, according to taste.
    8.  Simmer, covered while water for favorite pasta cooks.

       

    Monday, August 6, 2012

    Cilantro Potato Cakes

    Fry oil
    2 cups prepared mashed potatoes
    1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
    8 eggs, plus 2 eggs beaten separate in bowl
    1 cup seasoned bread crumbs
    salt and pepper, to taste
    Chopped cherry peppers. (optional)

    Corn Salsa Ingredients:
    1 cup corn
    1/2 cup choice of bell peppers, chopped
    1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
    1/8 cup red onion, chopped
    1/8 cup black olives, chopped
    2 Tbs capers
    2 Tbs olive oil
    2 Tbs vinegar
    salt and pepper, to taste


    Directions:
    In bowl mix prepared mashed potatoes, cilantro and egg.  Season with salt and pepper.  In two separate bowls add bread crumb to one and 2 beaten eggs to other.  Divide potatoes into 8 patties.  Dip each patty into egg and then bread crumb.  Saute patties in hot oil in large skillet over medium heat.  Brown, then flip and brown other side.  Remove from pan and let rest on sheet of paper towels.  Fry eggs, then place an egg on top of each patty while serving. Top with cherry peppers (Optional).  Serve with Corn Salsa (recipe included) or by itself.

    Tuesday, July 24, 2012

    Chick Pea Salad Hummus


    This recipe makes a huge bowl of Chick Pea Salad.  Recipe can be divided in half to make less.  I like making this salad and serving it, tossed over lettuce on day "one".  On day "two", puree the leftovers and turn this wonder, delicious and very healthy salad into a hummus dip.  Serve with potato chips, pita chips, crackers or even some sliced, toasted Italian Bread.  Enjoy!!!

    Ingredients:
    2 cups chick peas
    2 cups red, grape tomatoes
    1 cup black olives, sliced
    1 cup artichoke hearts, marinated or packed in water.
    1 avocado, sliced
    1/2 cup red onion, chopped
    8 ozs feta cheese crumbles, optional
    4 cloves garlic, chopped
    2 limes, juiced and zest (or lemon)
    1-2 cups fresh cilantro, chopped (reserve some for garnish)

    Whisk in bowl: Drizzle over top of salad, toss.
    2 Tbs tahini paste, optional
    4 Tbs olive oil
    4 Tbs balsamic vinegar
    salt and pepper, to taste

    Sunday, July 15, 2012

    Rainbow Chicken (Chef Lily)


    Ingredients:
    2 large chicken breasts, sliced to thickness of choice. (trimmed)
    1 cup each: Fruity Pebbles Cereal and Multi Grain Cherrios, ground
    1/2 cup sunflower seeds, ground
    2 eggs, beaten
    salt and pepper, to taste

    Directions:
    1.  In large skillet heat fry oil (olive oil, canola oil or vegetable oil)
    2.  Beat eggs, place in separate bowl
    3.  Ground cereals and seeds together, place in separate dish
    4.  Dredge chicken in egg and then into dry mixture.  Place into hot oil.  Season.
         Cook until slightly brown, flip and brown opposite side until cooked.
    5.  Drain cooked chicken on paper towel to absorb excess oil.  Cover to keep warm.

    Saturday, July 7, 2012

    Grilled Pepper Jack Eggplant Sandwich



    1 eggplant, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick
    3 eggs, beaten
    1 cup flour
    fry oil
    12 slices sour dough bread
    12 slices pepper jack cheese
    1 small jar roasted peppers, drained and sliced
    1 stick butter, softened

    Heat skillet on medium heat with fry oil.  Beat eggs in small bowl.  In another bowl add flour.  Dredge each slice of eggplant in egg and then in flour.  Add to skillet.  Fry on both sides until brown.  Remove from pan and drain on paper towels to remove excess oil.



    Assemble Sandwich:
    Spread out 6 slices of bread.  Layer slices of eggplant on bread slices.  Top with roasted peppers.  Then top with 2 slices of pepper jack cheese.  Place another slice of bread on top, spread with butter.  Place (butter side down) heated flat skillet.  Spread other side of sandwich with butter.  Grill until brown then flip, then brown other side.  Slice and enjoy!!!!!

    Makes 6 Sandwiches

    Wednesday, June 27, 2012

    Creamy Lemongrass Ginger Soup

    Picture is garnished with Black Forbidden Rice.

    Prepared Forbidden Rice, (optional)

    1 quart vegetable broth, (chicken broth, opt)
    1/2 cup celery, chopped
    1/2 cup onion, chopped
    2 garlic cloves, chopped
    1/2 each red bell and yellow bell peppers, chopped
    2 TBS lemongrass, grated
    1 TBS ginger root, grated
    1/3 cup vegetarian oyster sauce (regular oyster sauce, optional)
    16 ozs Tofu, (firm) pureed
    cilantro, handful, reserve some for garnish
    baby spinach, (bag) fresh/rinsed.
    salt and pepper, to taste

    Directions:
    In large sauce pan add broth, celery, onions, garlic, peppers, lemongrass, ginger and oyster sauce.  Simmer until all ingredients are soft (approx. 30 mins).  Add pureed tofu, cilantro and spinach.  Season with salt and pepper.  Simmer for an additional 30 mins.  Garnish with cilantro.  Serve hot.

    Note:  Soup may be pureed with a hand blender before adding the spinach.  Giving soup a more creamy texture.

    Saturday, June 16, 2012

    Ice Box Pudding Pie


    INGREDIENTS:
    1Large Box Vanilla Pudding, not instant
    1Large Box Chocolate Pudding, not instant
    Whole Milk, according to recipe on box
    1 boxGraham Crackers
    2Ripe Bananas
    DIRECTIONS:
    1. Using a 9 x 13 inch glass dish, layer graham crackers on bottom and sides until covered.
    2. Cook vanilla pudding according to recipe on box. Pour in dish on top of first layer of graham crackers.
    3. Layer graham crackers on top of vanilla pudding.
    4. Cook chocolate pudding, according to recipe on box. Pour on top graham crackers in dish.
    5. Crush extra graham crackers and sprinkle on top.
    6. Chill for several hours, to set.

    Friday, May 25, 2012

    Cobb Potato Salad


    Ingredients:
    3 lbs red potatoes, cubed, cooked and drained
    6 hard boiled eggs, diced  (more or less to your liking)
    1/4 cup red onion
    salt and pepper, to taste

    Dressing:
    2 cups mayonnaise
    1/3 cup sugar
    3 TBS cider vinegar
    1/4 cup fresh parsley
    salt and pepper, to taste

    Topping:
    1 cup tomatoes, chopped
    1 cup bacon, fried and diced
    1 cup cooked turkey or chicken, cubed
    4 hard boiled eggs, peeled and diced
    1 large avocado, cubed
    1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles
    2 TBS scallion, diced (for garnish)
    Italian or Balsamic dressing (in a spritz bottle)

    1.  In large pot of water cook potatoes until soft, not mushy, drain.  Add to large mixing bowl.
    2.  Mix all ingredients for dressing, toss into potatoes.  Mix well.
    3.  Add to serving bowl, for cleaner presentation.
    4.  Layer toppings accordingly from order listed above.  Or to your preference.
    5.  Chill for at least 4 hours before serving.
    6.  Spritz top of salad before serving


    Notes:
    1.  Make sure not to over cook potatoes.  Potatoes should be soft but not mushy to point of falling apart.
    2.  Salad can be made day before, adding toppings next day.  Stir well before adding toppings.
    3.  I like to spritz the top of garnishes with an Italian dressing or a balsamic dressing for additional taste.
    4.  Turkey or Chicken can also be switched out for bbq pulled protein.

    Thursday, May 17, 2012

    Steak Pizzaiola with Pasta


    Ingredients:
    2 large rib eye steaks, or other favorite steaks
    olive oil, for sauteing
    2 TBS butter
    1/2 cup onion, chopped
    3 garlic cloves, chopped
    1/4 cup white wine
    1/2 - 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced
    1/2 cup black olives, sliced
    2 large basil leaves, chopped
    grated cheese
    salt and pepper, to taste

    Directions:
    1.  Broil or grill steak, cover put aside.
    2.  Heat oil and butter in saute pan.  Add onion and garlic, season.  Cook until soft. 
    3.  Add wine then add tomatoes, olives and basil.  Saute for about 2 mins, stirring.  Add grated cheese, salt and pepper, toss.
    4.  Slice steak, served on favorite pasta.  Top with tomato and olive mixture.  Sprinkle with extra grated cheese.

    Note:  Optional herbs, oregano
               Pasta may also be tossed with olive oil, salt, pepper and/or grated cheese for extra flavor.

    Rustic Seafood Pasta



    1/2 pound each of shrimp (shelled), squid (cleaned and sliced approx 1/4 slices), little neck clams and mussels.
    4 TBS olive oil
    1 small onion, chopped
    2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
    2 sprigs thyme
    2 large basil leaves
    2 bay leaves
    1 sprig rosemary
    1 can tomato paste
    1/4 cup red cooking wine
    1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
    salt, to taste
    2 cans crushed tomatoes

    In large sauce pot, on medium to low heat add oil.  Add seafood, starting with clams and mussels, cook until shells open.  Add remaining seafood, cook until shrimp is pink.  Remove all seafood from pot.  Add onions and garlic.  Saute until soft.  Add all herbs and paste.  Deglaze by adding wine to the pot, season with salt and pepper.  Add tomatoes and simmer for 20 mins.  Add seafood and simmer for addition 10 mins.  Serve with favorite pasta.

    Note:  Sauce is enough for approx 2 pounds of pasta.
    Can substitute other seafood, if you like.
    Crushed red pepper is optional.

    Sunday, May 13, 2012

    Candy Bar Brownies



    • 1/2 cup melted butter
    • 1 cup white sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 2 eggs
    • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
    • 1 cup chopped up candy bars, (I used Nestle Crunch, Babe Ruth and Butterfingers)

    Directions

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9x9 inch baking pan.
    2. In a medium bowl, mix together the oil, sugar, and vanilla. Beat in eggs. Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt; gradually stir into the egg mixture until well blended. Stir in walnuts, if desired. Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan.  Sprinkle candy bar on top.  With a spoon or knife gentle press candy bar into batter.
    3. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the brownie begins to pull away from edges of pan. Let cool on a wire rack before cutting into squares.

    Thursday, May 10, 2012

    Artisan Blackberry Lambrusco French Toast







    1 cup Lambrusco red wine
    1/4 cup brown sugar
    1 TBS butter
    1 cup blackberries, fresh
    pinch sea salt
    2 Egg Land's Best Eggs
    4 slices Artisan Bread, or other thick sliced bread

    1.  In medium sauce pan over medium to low temperature, add wine and sugar.  Stir until sugar is dissolved.  Add butter, stir then add blackberries and salt to taste.  Simmer to reduce liquid in half.
    2.  In small bowl, beat eggs
    3. On medium, heat saute pan.  Lightly grease with cooking oil and slab of butter.
    4.  Dip bread into beaten egg, covering both sides.
    5.  Place in saute pan, season with salt and cook until lightly browned on both sides.
    6.  Drizzle with blackberry syrup, top with whipped cream.

    Note:  Recipe makes 4 pieces of French Toast and serves 2 people.