Spike's & Jamie's Recipe Collection & a Whole Lot More!

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Recipes from Spike & Jamie

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How to use these pages:  Below is a list of the recipes on this page.  You can either scroll down the page and look at all of the recipes, or look at the titles.  When you find one that seems interesting, use your web browsers FIND function to take you directly to that recipe (on my IE browser it's Edit/Find (on this page)   or Ctrl - F on your keyboard).

1 2 3 4 CAKE

































































1 2 3 4 CAKE

This old cake, which has been around at least since the Depression, is so named because it calls for 1 cup of butter, 2 cups of sugar, 3 cups of flour and 4 eggs.

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

Pinch of salt

1 cup butter, (1/2 lb) at room temperature (2 sticks; see note)

2 cups granulated sugar

4 eggs, at room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 teaspoons grated lemon zest

1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature

Butter and flour two 8-inch round cake pans. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt, and set aside. Cream butter and sugar until mixture lightens into cream color, about 2 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, scraping bowl well after each addition. Beat about 5 minutes after all the eggs are added. Add the vanilla and lemon zest. Alternately add the flour mixture and buttermilk, starting and ending with the flour, and mix briefly after each addition. Spread evenly in pans and bake for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and the top springs back when touched. Cool on wire rack.

Cake can be frosted with any favorite icing. It makes a wonderful, large strawberry shortcake. Or, the lemon curd recipe from the accompanying Lemon Poppy Seed Cupcake recipe can be spread over each layer and powdered sugar sprinkled over the top of the cake.

Note: Use real butter or stick margarine. Do not substitute reduced-fat spreads; their higher water content often yields less-satisfactory results.


1 large (1-pound) loaf ciabatta

Herb vinaigrette (see next recipe)

2 or more big ripe, juicy tomatoes (tomatoes of choice are brandywines, striped

Germans, Carmello, and Costoluto Genovese)

1 large yellow or red bell pepper, roasted, peeled, and quartered

4 ounces fresh mozzarella, goat or other favorite cheese, sliced

Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Slice the top third off the loaf of unsliced bread and set it aside. Pull out the inside. (You can use it to make bread crumbs.)

Paint the inside of the bread with some of the dressing, then make layers of sliced tomatoes, pepper, and cheese. Bathe each layer with dressing. Season with salt and pepper.

Add the top, press down, then cut into quarters or sixths. This packs well if wrapped tightly.


SERVES: 4 to 6

1/4 cup basil leaves

1 tablespoon chopped marjoram

1 tablespoon chopped parsley

1 small garlic clove, minced

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

4 teaspoons aged red wine vinegar

Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Finely chop the herbs with the garlic, then add the olive oil. Add the vinegar and 1/4 teaspoon salt and season with pepper. Taste and adjust the seasonings if needed.


5 cups fresh berries (almost any kind of berry works except elderberries)

3/4 cup sugar

3 Tablespoons cornstarch

1/8 teaspoon salt

2 Tablespoons butter

Pastry - Note: If you have a good pastry recipe, use it instead or even use a biscuit recipe with an addition 1/4 cup sugar in it and roll it out thin.

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup shortening

2 Tablespoons water

1 Tablespoon milk

1 Tablespoon sugar

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place berries in bottom of 9-inch square baking

dish. Combine sugar, cornstarch, and salt and sprinkle over berries. Dot with butter; set aside.

Pastry: Combine flour and salt in a bowl. Cut in shortening until coarse dough forms. Sprinkle with water. Stir until mixture forms a ball. Roll out on lightly floured surface.

Place pastry over dish of berries, sealing the edges. Cut slits on top. Brush with milk and sprinkle with sugar. Bake 30 minutes until golden brown. From the Warfield House Bed and Breakfast


1/3 cup Vegetable Oil

1/2 cup Applesauce, unsweetened

1/2 cup Cocoa Powder -- unsweetened

1/4 cup Sugar OR substitute for 1/4 cup sugar

1 cup Flour

1 teaspoon Baking Powder

1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda

2 large Eggs

1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

1/4 cup Nuts -- chopped

1 teaspoon Powdered Sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a large bowl, combine oil, applesauce and

cocoa. Add sugar/sweetener and stir until dissolved. Add eggs and vanilla. Mix dry ingredients together and stir into the mixture. Pour the batter into a greased and floured 9 inch square pan. Sprinkle on nuts. Bake about 20 to 30 minutes or until top is set but edges are not dried out. Toothpick will come out clean. Cool, & sprinkle with powdered sugar.



by Todd Wilbur

This creamy green sauce is available at the salsa bar at each of the 300 El Pollo Loco outlets located throughout the western U.S., and folks are going crazy over it. The problem is, you can only get it at the restaurants in small quantities -- time to put on our kitchen cloning hat. Use a food processor to mix this one up (everything but the cilantro and onion goes in there) and prepare for a delicious, spicy concoction that you can pour over your favorite homemade Mexican-style dishes, from tacos salads to fajitas. Pancho Ochoa opened his first roadside chicken stand in Guasave, Mexico in 1975, and now El Pollo Loco is the number one quick-service, flame-broiled chicken chain in America.

From Top Secret Recipes:

1 ripe avocado

1 jalapeno, stemmed and quartered

1 cup water

1 tablespoon white distilled vinegar

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro

2 tablespoons diced onion


1. Combine avocado, jalapeno, water, vinegar and salt in a food processor. Puree the mixture for several seconds on high speed, or until jalapeno is finely minced.

2. Pour mixture into a medium bowl. Stir in cilantro and onion. Cover and chill until ready to serve. Makes 1 1/2 cups. ( http://www.topsecretrecipes.com )


1 cup flour

1/2 cup sugar

2 tsp. baking powder

dash salt

1/2 cup milk

1 egg

2 tbsp. melted margarine

1 1/2 cups sliced strawberries

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 cup margarine

1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt into an electric mixing bowl. Add the milk, egg and melted margarine and beat for 2 minutes on medium speed. Turn into a greased 8 inch pan. Cover with sliced strawberries.

Combine the flour and sugar and cut in the margarine until it forms coarse crumbles. Add the walnuts and sprinkle over the strawberries. Bake for 35-40 minutes.


makes 8 servings

4 large tomatoes

Melted unsalted butter

Salt to taste

15 ounces frozen, chopped spinach, thawed

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 large garlic cloves, minced

2 green onions, finely chopped

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 cup whipping cream

1 tablespoon Pernod or other anise-flavored liqueur

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon red (cayenne) pepper

3 eggs, well beaten

Grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Halve tomatoes crosswise. Carefully scoop out and discard pulp and seeds; be careful not to puncture outer skin.

Cut a very thin slice from bottom of each tomato half so it will sit flat. Place tomatoes in a baking dish. Brush inside with melted butter and salt and pepper to taste. Set dish aside.

Press all the moisture out of spinach.

In heavy 10-inch skillet over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter. Add spinach, garlic and green onions. Sauté for 5 minutes then add flour, stirring to blend well. Cook, stirring constantly, for 3 to 4 minutes.

Add whipping cream, Pernod and seasonings. Bring to boil and stir until slightly thickened. Remove from heat and cool slightly. Stir in beaten eggs.

Spoon portion of mixture into each tomato half and top with Parmesan cheese. Bake in oven for 25 to 30 minutes. Serve hot.


3 cups fresh corn kernels

2 1/4 cups buttermilk

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup cornmeal

1 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper

Oil to fry

Stir together corn and buttermilk; let stand 30 minutes. Drain.

Combine flour and next 3 ingredients in a large heavy-duty zip-top plastic bag. Add corn to flour mixture, a small amount at a time, and shake bag to coat.

Pour oil to depth of 1 inch in a Dutch oven; heat to 375 degrees F. Fry corn, in small batches, 2 minutes or until golden. Drain on paper towels. Serve immediately. Yield: 4 servings.


Makes 6 servings

8 slices bacon, chopped

1/3 cup olive oil (divided)

2 medium onions, thinly sliced

8 Tuscan peppers, seeded and chopped (see note)

3 cups peeled, crushed Roma tomatoes (see note)

1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste

1 pound cappellini pasta

3/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

In a non-reactive skillet, sauté the bacon in 3 tablespoons of the olive oil until lightly browned. Add the onions and cook, stirring, over medium heat until golden. Add the Tuscan peppers, tomatoes and salt, and simmer for 10 minutes. While the sauce is simmering, cook the cappellini in 4 quarts of salted boiling water until al dente (tender but firm to the bite), about 3 minutes. Drain the pasta and toss with the remaining olive oil. Stir in the sauce, add the cheese, toss well and serve immediately.

Note: Tuscan peppers (pickled hot Italian peppers) are available at specialty shops and most supermarkets.

Note: To peel tomatoes, plunge into boiling water for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove immediately and plunge into cold water. Skin should slip off easily.


Makes 12 servings

A great party cake, especially for children. Chicago Metallic and Rowoco, two major pan producers, like this recipe so much they both offer it with their checkerboard cake pans.


3 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate

4 eggs

1 1/3 cups milk (divided)

1 tablespoon vanilla

4 cups sifted cake flour

2 cups granulated sugar

2 tablespoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup unsalted butter, softened (1/2 lb) (2 sticks; see note)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Grease a set of three 9-by-1-inch checkerboard cake pans and line with parchment or wax paper, then grease again and flour.

In a double boiler, melt the chocolate over hot (not simmering) water, stirring frequently. Remove from the water.

In a medium bowl, lightly combine the eggs, a quarter of the milk and the vanilla; set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt, and mix on low speed for 30 seconds to blend. Add the butter and remaining milk. Mix on low speed until the dry ingredients are moistened. Increase to medium speed (high speed if using a hand mixer) and beat for 11/2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Gradually add the egg mixture in 3 batches, beating for 20 seconds after each addition. Scrape down the sides.

Divide the batter approximately in half in 2 bowls. Stir the melted chocolate into the smaller batch of batter until uniform in color. Fill 2 large pastry bags fitted with large round tubes 3/4 inch in diameter (a large No. 9 tube) with the 2 batters (see note).

Place the divider rings in a pan and pipe batter into each section, alternating batter colors. The batter should fill the pan about 1/2 full. Using a small metal spatula or the back of a spoon, smooth any seams or divisions in the batter. Now carefully lift out the divider and rinse it off. When piping batter for the second layer, alternate the colors (if you started with yellow for the outside ring, start with chocolate). Pipe batter for the third layer exactly like the first.

Bake 25 minutes or until a tester inserted near the center comes out clean and the cakes spring back when pressed lightly in the centers. The cakes should start to shrink from the sides of the pans only after removal from the oven.

Let the cakes cool in the pans on racks for 10 minutes. Loosen the sides with a small metal spatula and invert onto greased wire racks. To prevent splitting, re-invert so that the tops are up and cool completely before wrapping airtight.

When stacking the layers, use a very thin coating of yellow or chocolate frosting to adhere the layers without disturbing the checkerboard effect.

Note: You may also use glass measuring cups to pour the batter into the pans, but pastry bags are faster and easier to use. -- From "The Cake Bible" by Rose Levy Beranbaum


Serving Size: 4

4 each chicken breast

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon onion -- chopped

1 can red plums

Small amount of stock or water

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 rind lemon, zested

1/4 teaspoon allspice -- ground

1 pinch parsley -- for garnish

Trim chicken and season with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a pan and fry the chicken until browned all over. Transfer to a casserole.

Add the onions to the oil in the pan and fry gently until soft; then drain off any excess oil from the pan.

Drain the plums and make up the juices to 1 1/4 cups with stock or water. Add to the pan and bring to a boil. Add lemon rind, juice and allspice to the sauce. Adjust seasoning and pour over the chicken.

Arrange the plums over and around the chicken. Cover the casserole and cook in a moderate oven at 350 degrees for about 50 minutes. Or microwave for 6 minutes on high

Serving Ideas: Serve on top of rice or with your favorite pasta and some fresh asparagus.

NOTE: This is a great dish using canned plums, you can of course use fresh if available, heat in a heavy pan on the stove until heated throughout, or in the microwave on med-high for 5-8 minutes.


Makes 4 servings

1/2 cup orange juice

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon firmly packed brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch

2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms (about 8 ounces)

1/2 cup sliced green onions

2 teaspoons vegetable oil

1 pound lean boneless pork, sliced 1/8 inch thick

3 cups cooked brown rice (1 cup raw)

1 11-ounce can mandarin orange segments, drained

2 tablespoons slivered almonds, toasted (see note)

In small bowl, combine juice, mustard, sugar and cornstarch; set aside. Sauté mushrooms and onions in oil in large skillet over medium-high heat for 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from skillet and set aside. Add pork to the skillet and stir-fry until browned. Stir mushroom mixture and juice mixture into the pork. Cook, stirring frequently, until heated through.

Divide hot cooked rice equally among 4 bowls. Spoon pork mixture over rice. Garnish with mandarin oranges and toasted almonds.

Note: To toast nuts, heat in a dry skillet over medium heat until they start to brown. Stir occasionally. Be careful not to scorch them.

Note: Individual rice bowls may be stored in the freezer for up to 1 month. To reheat frozen rice bowls in the microwave, cook on high 5 to 7 minutes, or until heated through. Let stand in microwave 1 to 2 minutes.






Serves 4

1/4 cup sugar

2 tablespoons water

1 cinnamon stick

1/2 cup lightly packed sweetened flaked coconut

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups whole milk, divided use

2 large eggs

1 tablespoon dried sherry

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Toasted slivered almonds for garnish

In a medium saucepan, boil the sugar, water and cinnamon stick for five minutes. Remove the cinnamon stick. Add coconut and cook, stirring, until all of the syrup is absorbed, about five minutes.

Add salt and 1 1/4 cups of the milk. Cook over medium heat, stirring until the mixture comes to a boil, then turn off the heat and let the mixture sit in the pan while beating the eggs.

In a small bowl, beat the eggs with the remaining 1/4 cup of milk. Stir 1/2 cup of the hot coconut mixture into the beaten eggs, then stir the egg mixture into the pan with the hot coconut mixture.

Return the pan to the heat and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the pudding is hot and thickens slightly, about five to seven minutes. Stir in the sherry and vanilla.

Pour into four single-serving dishes. Refrigerate at least six hours or overnight. Serve cold, garnished with toasted almonds.


4 ears fresh corn, husks and silk removed

4 medium green onions

2 tablespoons butter or olive oil

1 large red bell pepper, diced

3 cups milk or equal parts milk and chicken stock or broth

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste Remove kernels from the ears, using a sharp knife or corn cutter. Place kernels into bowl. Use flat side of knife blade to scrape cobs, squeezing out the milky juice from the base of the kernels; add to kernels in bowl. Puree half the kernels in a food processor; return to bowl of cut kernels. Slice white and pale green parts of the green onions, reserving some of the green tops for garnish.

Heat butter in a large saucepan. Add green onion and pepper, and cook over moderate heat until soft but not brown. Add corn, stir and cook 2 minutes; add milk. Bring soup just to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Season to taste and serve, garnished with chopped green onion tops. Shrimp variation: Omit red peppers. Substitute 1/4 pound raw shrimp, peeled and roughly chopped.

Green chili variation: Substitute 1 or 2 canned mild green chilies, seeded, for the red pepper. Garnish soup with cilantro leaves. Smoked salmon variation: Substitute 1/4 pound boneless smoked salmon or trout, diced or shredded, for the red peppers.


Makes 6 servings

8 to 10 ears fresh corn, husk and silk removed

3 eggs

1 cup milk

1/2 cup half-and-half

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons melted butter

1/4 cup cornmeal

Remove kernels from the ears, using a sharp knife or corn cutter. Place kernels into bowl. Use flat side of knife blade to scrape cobs, squeezing out the milky juice from the base of the kernels; add to kernels in bowl. Repeat with remaining ears to yield about 2 cups of pulp.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

To the corn pulp add the eggs, milk, half-and-half, salt, pepper, butter and cornmeal. Beat with fork until thoroughly blended; pour into buttered 11/2-quart baking dish. Set the dish into a larger dish or pan; set on oven rack. Pour boiling water into larger dish or pan to reach about two-thirds up the sides of the smaller dish. Bake until pudding no longer trembles when dish is jiggled slightly and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean (about 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes). Pudding can remain in the oven, with door ajar, for up to 20 minutes before serving. Pudding will sink slightly.





Makes 11/2 cups

This fresh-tasting uncooked sauce is a favorite accompaniment for cold salmon.


3/4 cup peeled, seeded, minced cucumber

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup plain yogurt or sour cream

1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint or 1/2 teaspoon dried

1/2 teaspoon finely minced garlic

Salt and pepper to taste

Sprinkle cucumber with salt; drain in colander for 30 minutes. In a medium bowl, combine yogurt, mint, garlic, salt and pepper. Add cucumber and mix well. Refrigerate at least 1 hour to meld flavors.


Makes 4 to 6 servings

2 6-ounce cans albacore tuna

2 hard-cooked eggs, chopped

1 cup chopped celery

3 tablespoons chopped sweet pickles

2 tablespoons finely chopped onion

1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh parsley (optional)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Dash of hot pepper sauce

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1 teaspoon Creole-style mustard

Rinse and drain flaked tuna in a colander. Refrigerate for 30 minutes while the tuna drains. Mix tuna with chopped eggs, celery, sweet pickles, onion and parsley. Season with salt, black pepper, cayenne and hot pepper sauce, and mix together. Stir in mayonnaise and mustard. Chill.


Makes 4 servings, or enough to generously fill 2 large beefsteak tomatoes

3 tablespoons mayonnaise

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

2 6-ounce cans albacore tuna, drained

1/4 large ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and diced to make about 1/2 cup

1 tablespoon minced shallot

2 tablespoons chopped celery

1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh basil leaves

In small bowl, whisk together mayonnaise and mustard. Season with salt and pepper.

In large bowl, add tuna and break into small pieces with back of fork. Add avocado, shallot, celery, basil and dressing. Stir to combine. Refrigerate until ready to serve or stuff in tomatoes. -- From Daniel Boulud, Restaurant Daniel




For seafood cakes:

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

2 celery stalks, finely chopped

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1/2 pound sea scallops, chopped

1/2 pound cod fillets, chopped

1 can (6-ounces) lump crabmeat, drained

1/3 cup dried bread crumbs

1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

1/2 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper, ground

For citrus salsa:

1 can (15 1/4 ounces) pineapple tidbits, drained and chopped

1 can (11 ounces) Mandarin orange segments, drained and chopped

1 tablespoon lime juice

1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped

1 teaspoon minced garlic

For chipotle aioli:

1 cup mayonnaise

2 teaspoons finely chopped chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

2 tablespoons bottled chili sauce

2 teaspoons minced garlic

For garnish:

Fresh cilantro sprigs

Heat 2 tablespoons butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Cook celery and garlic, stirring until softened, about 2 minutes. Add scallops and cod, stirring until cooked through and no longer opaque. Remove from heat. Drain well and stir in crabmeat. In a large bowl, combine bread crumbs, mayonnaise, cilantro, Old Bay, salt and pepper. Add seafood and fold in.

Combine all salsa ingredients in a bowl. Combine all aioli ingredients in another bowl.

Heat 1 tablespoon butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Form seafood mixture into 6 equal-sized cakes or patties. Cook 3 cakes, about 3 minutes per side, until golden brown. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate. Add remaining butter and cook remaining cakes.

Spoon aioli into a plastic baggie. Cut a small hole in one corner and drizzle a zigzag on each plate. Top with a seafood cake. Then place salsa and a sprig of cilantro on side to garnish.


This pie tastes like Baci, the yummy Italian version of the chocolate kiss. Nutella, a chocolate-and-hazelnut spread, is available in many supermarkets and gourmet stores.

3/4 cup hazelnuts, toasted and skinned (see note)

1 1/2 cups whipping cream, chilled, plus additional for optional garnish

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 13-ounce jar Nutella

1 prepared chocolate cookie crumb crust

Place the skinned hazelnuts in the work bowl of a food processor and chop them very fine.

Combine the cream and vanilla in a large mixing bowl and, using an electric mixer, whip the cream until stiff peaks form.

Place the Nutella in a medium mixing bowl and stir in 1/4 of the whipped cream. Gently fold the lightened Nutella mixture back into the remaining whipped cream. Fold in the chopped hazelnuts.

Scrape the filling into the prepared pie shell and smooth the top with a rubber spatula. Cover the pie with plastic wrap and refrigerate until the filling is completely set, at least 6 hours and up to 1 day. Serve with whipped cream, if you like.

Note: To toast hazelnuts, spread the shelled nuts in a shallow pan and roast in a 275-degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes or until the skins crack. To remove skins,

rub nuts while warm with a rough cloth. -- From "Icebox Pies" by Lauren Chattman


1 1/3 cups Flour

1 tsp. Baking Powder

1/2 tsp. Baking Soda

1/2 cup Brown Sugar -- packed

3/4 cup Sugar

8 Peanut Butter Cup Candies -- chopped in 1/2" pieces

ingredients added later:

1/2 cup Butter or Margarine -- softened

1 Egg

1 teaspoon Vanilla

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder and baking soda. Layer ingredients in jar in order given in a 1 quart canning jar. It is helpful to tap jar lightly on a padded surface (towel on counter) as you layer ingredients to make all ingredients fit neatly. Use scissors to cut a 9 inch-diameter circle from fabric of your choice. Center fabric circle over lid and secure with a rubber band. Tie on a raffia or ribbon bow to cover the rubber band. Attach a card with the following directions:

Peanut Butter Cup Cookies

Using a large spoon, remove peanut butter cups from jar. Set aside. Empty cookie mix into large mixing bowl. Stir mix with large wooden spoon to evenly distribute ingredients. Add 1/2 cup softened butter or margarine, 1 egg and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Mix until completely blended. Mixture will be thick, so you may need to use a wooden spoon to finish mixing. Add peanut butter cup pieces. Shape into walnut sized balls and place onto a greased cookie sheet 2 inches apart. Press balls down with a fork. Bake at 350 degrees F for 12 to 14 minutes until edges are lightly browned. Cool 5 minutes on cookie sheet and then place cookies on baking racks to finish cooling. Yield: 2-1/2 dozen cookies.

Source: "Volume 2, Gift Sized Mixes www.realfood4realpeople.com"

Copyright: "(C)1999-2002, Kaylin White/Real Food for Real People"


Crepes de Pommes de Terre

Makes about 24 pancakes, 3 inches in diameter

1 8-ounce package reduced-fat cream cheese, at room temperature

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 eggs

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

3 ounces grated Swiss cheese (11/2 cups)

2 1/2 pounds baking potatoes, peeled and grated (about 4 cups)

1 tablespoon fat-free half-and-half

4 teaspoons butter (divided)

4 teaspoons vegetable oil (divided)

Blend the cream cheese, flour, eggs, salt and pepper in a large mixing bowl with a fork. Stir in the grated cheese.

A handful at a time, twist grated potatoes into a ball in the corner of a towel and extract as much juice as possible. (You can also pile them into a salad spinner and spin until most of the liquid is released.) Blend into the cheese and eggs, then stir in the half-and-half to make the mixture creamy.

Over medium to medium-high heat, heat 1/2 teaspoon each of butter and oil in a large frying pan. When sizzling, make 6 mounds of potato batter and cook until bubbles appear on the top of the pancakes, about 3 to 4 minutes. They will be well-browned and crisp-looking. Turn and cook 4 to 5 minutes more on the other side, browning them again. Repeat with remaining batter. If not served immediately, arrange on a single layer on a baking sheet and leave uncovered. Crisp for several minutes in a preheated 400-degree oven. -- Adapted from "The French Chef Cookbook" 30th anniversary edition by Julia Child


5 cups chopped green tomatoes

4 cups sugar

1 large (6-serving size) package raspberry gelatin

Boil tomatoes and sugar together for 15 minutes. Remove from heat.

Add gelatin and stir well. In batches, puree in a blender. Pour into jars and seal. Process for 5 minutes in a boiling-water bath.



3 1/2 pounds ripe tomatoes

3 1/2 ounces candied pineapple

1 green apple

1 tablespoon grated lemon rind

1/2 cup lemon juice

3 1/2 cups sugar

Peel & coarsely chop tomatoes. Coarsely chop pineapple. Peel, core and grate apple. Combine the fruit in a large pot. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Stir in lemon juice.

Add sugar and stir until dissolved. Boil rapidly, uncovered, for 45 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Pour into warm, sterile jars and seal. Process in a boiling-water bath for 5 minutes.


MAKES: 1 pint

1 quart ripe tomatoes

1/2 cup cider vinegar

1 cup sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon mixed pickling spices

Plunge tomatoes into boiling water for 15 seconds. Remove skins, cut into quarters and place in a saucepan. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a slow boil. Cook slowly until thick, stirring frequently.

Pour hot mixture into two sterilized half-pint jars. Seal. Process in a boiling-water bath for 5 minutes.


Makes 4 servings

4 center-cut fresh swordfish fillets (8 ounces each)

2 tablespoons olive oil

Oil, for the grill

Cilantro Butter (recipe follows)

Prepare fire for direct-heat method of cooking. Wash fish and pat dry. Lightly coat fillets with olive oil.

When fire is ready, place fish on oiled grill; cook until fish flakes with a fork (about 4 minutes per side for thick fillets, less time for thinner fillets). Serve hot with Cilantro Butter.

Cilantro Butter

1 bunch cilantro

1/2 cup unsalted butter

Juice of 1 lemon

Salt and pepper, to taste

Wash and dry cilantro thoroughly; discard thick stems. Combine with butter in food processor or blender; process for several seconds with metal blade to blend well. Add lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste; pulse to blend. Spoon mixture onto aluminum foil, forming a log. Wrap tightly and refrigerate until firm. Slice and serve with grilled swordfish. Makes 2/3 cup.


Serves 2

2 (6-ounce) boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/4 cup pasta sauce

2 tablespoons pineapple juice

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons sugar

Vegetable oil spray

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 Hawaiian rolls (see Note)

Place chicken between layers of wax or parchment paper and flatten with a meat mallet or a rolling pin.

Mix pasta sauce, pineapple juice, mustard and sugar in a small bowl to make a sauce. Heat grill to medium-high and spray grates with vegetable oil spray. Sear chicken 2 minutes on each side. Add salt and pepper to taste on the cooked side. Move chicken to a cooler area of grill and spoon 1 tablespoon sauce over each piece. Cover with a lid or, if grill does not have a cover, place foil over the chicken. Cook 2 minutes. A meat thermometer should read 170 degrees.

Cut rolls open and spray with vegetable oil spray. Place on grill for 1 to 2 minutes. Put chicken to dinner plates and serve remaining sauce and rolls on the side.

Note: Hawaiian rolls can be found in most supermarkets, but you can use any type of rolls.



By Andrea M. Vayda. Special to The Washington Post

Wednesday, June 5, 2002


What do you do when a recipe calls for a mere tablespoon of fresh herbs?

If you buy an entire bunch, you can already see yourself throwing most of it away. If you don't buy any, you will not be doing the dish justice. It's a no-win situation.

Yet when was the last time you thought of using that extra rosemary or mint in a batch of cookies?

Some herbs are indeed best in savory dishes, notably oregano, chives and dill. But many herbs have sweet and spicy notes that work splendidly in desserts. These include rosemary, mint, thyme, verbena, sage, tarragon, lavender, even basil and bay leaf.

The herbs balance the sweetness of the sugar in select desserts and add depth and sophistication to the overall flavor. When used in fruit recipes, herbs tend to play a supporting role, enhancing the taste of the fruit itself. And in other desserts, as with lavender or tarragon ice cream, the herb itself is the central flavor.

Throughout history, herbs have been added to sweets. The ancient Romans were known to bake herbs into cakes, though more for purported medicinal effect than flavor. (Herbs were prescribed for everything from aiding digestion to disease prevention.)

Healthful properties aside, herbs are being increasingly relied upon by restaurants as an innovative ingredient for the last course. Peter Smith, executive chef at Vidalia in downtown Washington, is one enthusiast. Smith considers herb-infused desserts to be a tempting option for diners who, like himself, would otherwise pass on the more traditional dessert offerings. In past summers, his dessert menu occasionally featured a number of herb-based ice creams, among them basil, tarragon and anise hyssop.

Elsewhere, herb dishes hold their own against the full range of more traditional desserts. Cashion's Eat Place in Adams Morgan dishes up ice cream with lavender. At Tosca's in downtown Washington, Italian flair is evident in the basil and the sage gelati and the strawberries macerated in thyme-infused balsamic syrup. And at Michel Richard's Citronelle in Georgetown, the lemon meringue tart comes with basil sauce. Come late summer and fresh figs, diners can anticipate the fig tart infused with bay leaf at Obelisk in Dupont Circle.

Not just any dessert can withstand the addition of herbs. The focus should be on desserts that are better because of them: A simple butter cookie that lacks any extract certainly benefits from the addition of finely chopped rosemary. The mellow richness of a basic bittersweet truffle is enhanced by an after note of mint. A humdrum apple cake gains a subtle spiciness when finely chopped sage is added to the batter. And rosemary sprigs strewn across the caramel of an unbaked tarte Tatin add another dimension to the dessert.

So, when was the last time you bought rosemary in order to make cookies?


(4 servings)

Although this thyme-infused syrup works well with plums, it takes just as well to other stone fruits, such as cherries and apricots.

The presence of the thyme becomes more pronounced the longer the syrup sits. The rich syrup and fruit can be spooned over a scoop of ice cream or swapped for strawberries for an untraditional shortcake. Adapted from a recipe in "Desserts From an Herb Garden" by Sharon Kebschull Barrett (St. Martin's Press, 1999).

1 1/2 pounds stone fruits, such as plums (about 10), halved and pitted

1 cup water

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 tablespoons minced fresh thyme leaves

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice

Few drops freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional)

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Have ready a 9-inch square baking dish or other deep-sided dish just large enough to hold the fruit in a single layer. (If using a glass dish, reduce the temperature to 425 degrees.)

Arrange the fruit, skin-side up, in the dish. Set aside.

In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the water, sugar, thyme and orange juice to a boil, stirring frequently, until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat; set aside to cool slightly.

Pour the syrup over the fruit, transfer to the oven and roast until the fruit is tender, about 25 minutes for plums. (The timing depends largely on the size and ripeness of the fruit.) The skins may split; this is okay.

Using a spoon, transfer the fruit to a platter; set aside. Strain the syrup back into the saucepan, discarding the solids. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook just until reduced to a thin syrup, 4 to 5 minutes. If desired, add a few drops of lemon juice to counter the sweetness.

Meanwhile, gently wipe any thyme leaves from the fruit. Pour the syrup over the fruit. Serve warm or chilled. (May cover and refrigerate for up to 1 week for a more pronounced flavor.)

Per serving: 196 calories, 2 gm protein, 48 gm carbohydrates, 1 gm fat, 0 mg cholesterol, trace saturated fat, 1 mg sodium, 3 gm dietary fiber


(Makes about 2 cups)

An herb-flavored sugar lends a sweetly elegant touch to anything, whether stirred into iced tea, sprinkled over berries or beaten into a simple pound cake. A touch of orange, lime or lemon zest can also be added for a slightly more complex flavor. Use lavender, lemon balm, verbena, mint or rosemary.

Here's a general formula from Deborah Madison's "Local Flavors" (Broadway, $39.95).

1/4 cup leaves and/or flowers of sweet herbs, such as lavender, lemon balm,

verbena, mint or rosemary

2 cups granulated sugar

Zest from 1 citrus fruit, in strips, not grated (optional)

Place the herbs on a cutting board or in a mortar and gently use a pestle or the back of a wooden spoon to bruise them slightly to release some of the aromatic oils.

In a bowl or in a resealable plastic bag, combine the herbs, sugar and, if using, zest. Transfer to a glass jar or other container with a tight-fitting cover and set aside for two weeks. Every few days, give the sugar a shake or a stir to spread the aromatic oils around and to break up any clumps. Strain the sugar, discarding the herbs and zest. Return to a container with a tight-fitting cover and store at room temperature.


(About 36 cookies)

When warm, these dainty cookies are crisp on the outside yet tender and chewy on the inside; as they cool, they turn extremely crisp. They're the perfect merger of butter shortbread and sugar cookie. Try them with your favorite herb, such as lemon verbena or lemon thyme. From "The Herbal Epicure" by Carole Ottesen (Ballantine Wellspring, 2001).

Granulated sugar for topping

8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

1/2 cup confectioners' sugar

1 cup flour

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves, or to taste

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Have ready a glass with a flat bottom and a small dish of granulated sugar.

In a medium bowl, with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter and confectioners' sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce the speed to low and gradually add the flour and rosemary and then switch to a wooden spoon or your hands to mix until thoroughly incorporated. The dough should be very crumbly.

Form teaspoonfuls of the dough into balls and place about 3 inches apart on the prepared sheet. Run the bottom of the glass under cool running water and shake to remove any excess water. Press the bottom of a glass into the granulated sugar. Then press the glass on the top of each dough mound to flatten. It may take a few practice cookies before the sugar sticks to the glass and then comes off on the cookie properly.

Bake the cookies, rotating the sheets halfway through to ensure even browning, for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the bottoms just begin to turn golden. Transfer the sheet to a wire rack to cool for 2 minutes, then transfer the cookies to the rack to cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature.


(Makes about 36 truffles)

Bite into these truffles and the richness of the chocolate is immediately offset by a pronounced herbal presence. Take your pick: bittersweet chocolate with mint or white chocolate teamed with tarragon. Or make both; an assortment of white and dark truffles makes for a stunning dessert course. From "The Herbfarm Cookbook" by Jerry Traunfeld (Scribner, 2000).

For the bittersweet chocolate mint truffles:

1 1/4 cups heavy cream, plus an additional 2 tablespoons if needed

Six 3-inch sprigs fresh mint, preferably peppermint or chocolate mint (may use


1 pound premium bittersweet chocolate, such as Callebaut, Valrhona or El Rey

About 1/2 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder

For the white chocolate tarragon truffles:

About 3/4 cup heavy cream, plus an additional 2 tablespoons, if needed

Four 3-inch sprigs fresh tarragon

1 pound premium white chocolate, such as Callebaut or Lindt

About 1/2 cup (3 ounces) finely ground pistachio nuts

Use the same technique for either truffle: In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the cream to a boil. Add the herb sprigs, using a wooden spoon to push them under the surface of the liquid, and immediately remove the pan from the heat. Cover and set aside to steep for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, finely chop the bittersweet chocolate or white chocolate. Transfer to a food processor or bowl; set aside.

Strain the cream into a large measuring cup, using a wooden spoon to press down firmly on the herbs to extract all the liquid from the leaves. Discard the herbs. You should have about 1 1/4 cups of cream if you're making the bittersweet chocolate mint truffles or 3/4 cup for the white chocolate tarragon truffles; if necessary, add enough additional plain heavy cream to the cup to reach the desired amount.

Return the cream to the saucepan, place over medium-high heat and bring it to a boil. Immediately pour it over the bittersweet chocolate or white chocolate and set aside for 1 minute. Turn on the food processor or beat with a standing mixer or wooden spoon until smooth. Using a rubber spatula, scrape either chocolate-cream mixture (or ganache) to a bowl and set aside for 2 hours at room temperature.

Have ready a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Using a tiny ice cream scoop, a melon baller or a teaspoon, scoop the ganache into roughly shaped 3/4-inch balls and transfer to the prepared sheet. After all the balls are scooped, quickly roll each one between your palms, using steady light pressure, to form round balls. If you are working in a warm room, refrigerate the truffles for 15 minutes prior to rolling the balls. If you have trouble with the chocolate melting in your palms, wash your hands, dip them in a bowl of ice water, dry them thoroughly and try again.

Place the cocoa or pistachios, depending on which truffle you are making, in a medium bowl and gently drop in 6 truffles. Swirl the bowl to coat the truffles evenly. Transfer the coated truffles to a large strainer and tap the edge of the strainer with your palm to knock off the excess coating. Transfer the coated truffles to a plastic storage container; repeat with the remaining ingredients. Tightly cover the truffles and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks. Return to room temperature prior to serving.


For the bittersweet chocolate truffles: Instead of mint, substitute four 3-inch sprigs fresh tarragon or 8 medium fresh rose geranium leaves.

For the white chocolate truffles: Instead of tarragon, substitute four 3-inch sprigs fresh tarragon, six 3-inch sprigs fresh spearmint, 8 medium fresh rose geranium leaves, 1/4 cup finely chopped young angelica stems, 6 fresh bay laurel leaves, 1 tablespoon fresh lavender buds (or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried) or 1/2 cup fresh lemon verbena leaves (or 1/4 cup crumbled dried). Andrea M. Vayda is a freelance food writer based in Boston. (c) 2002 The Washington Post Company



Serves 6


1 cup rice

3 green onions, cut into 3- or 4-inch lengths

1 bunch parsley, stems removed

1/4 cup chopped mixed green herbs, such as basil, tarragon, mint and chives

3 tablespoons olive oil, divided use

Juice of 1 lemon, divided use

3/4 pound cooked medium shrimp, cut in bite-size pieces

1/2 pound cherry tomatoes, quartered

1/2 cup pine nuts

Fill a saucepan 2/3 full of water and bring to a boil. Add 1 tablespoon salt and rice and cook, uncovered, until tender, about 13 minutes. Drain rice in a strainer and rinse under running water.

Chop green onions, parsley and mixed herbs in a food processor until finely minced. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil; process again.

Shake rice dry and place in a mixing bowl (this will make about 3 cups cooked rice). Season immediately with all but 1 tablespoon of herb mixture and half the lemon juice; mix well.

Combine shrimp and cherry tomatoes in a bowl. Toss with a little salt, remaining tablespoon of olive oil and remaining lemon juice. Add remaining herb mixture.

Toast pine nuts in a small, heavy skillet over medium heat until golden and fragrant, about 5 minutes.

Add 2/3 of shrimp and tomato mixture and 2/3 of pine nuts to rice and fold gently. Season to taste with salt and more lemon juice if necessary. Spoon rice mixture into a rough mound on a chilled serving platter. Scatter remaining tomato-shrimp mixture and pine nuts over top.


(4 servings)

This spice rub would be lost atop a two-inch, double-cut monster of a pork chop -- the flavors just can't compete with all of that meat. If it's maximum spice impact you're after, stick with a long, slender pork tenderloin since you can roll it all around in the rub.

Try pineapple salsa with this subtle blend of spices. It lends a cool, refreshing sweetness; if desired, toss it with freshly cooked long-grain rice or couscous.

From "Latin & Caribbean Grocery Stores Demystified" by Linda Bladholm (Renaissance Books, $16.95).

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon dry mustard (optional)

2 pork tenderloins (about 12 ounces each), trimmed of fat

Salt to taste

Pineapple Salsa (optional; recipe in this collection)

In a small bowl, combine the allspice, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and mustard, if using. Set aside.

Using a sharp knife, remove and discard any silver skin and visible fat from the pork. Pat the pork dry. Sprinkle the spice rub all over the pork and rub it evenly over the surface. (If time allows, transfer the pork to a plate, cover and set aside for at least 30 minutes or refrigerate up to 24 hours.)

Preheat the grill to medium high.

Grill the pork directly over medium heat, turning every 5 minutes, until the pork is evenly browned and reaches an internal temperature of 155 degrees, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer the pork to a cutting board and set aside to rest for 10 minutes before carving. (The internal temperature of the meat should continue to rise to 160 degrees.)

Cut the pork into 1/2-inch thick slices and fan them out on serving plates. If desired, garnish with pineapple or Pineapple Salsa.



Makes 8 servings

1/2 cup sifted cake flour

1/3 cup blanched pulverized almonds

1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature (1 stick; see note)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

3 eggs, separated

3 ounces semisweet chocolate

1 ounce bittersweet chocolate

2 tablespoons dark rum or strong coffee

Powdered sugar to dust cake or optional Soft Chocolate Icing (recipe follows)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Set rack in lower-middle level. Grease and flour an 8-inch round cake pan or 8-inch square pan. Measure out cake flour and almonds separately; set aside. Using an electric mixer, cream butter with sugar; when fluffy, beat in 3 egg yolks one at a time.

Meanwhile, melt semisweet chocolate and bittersweet chocolate with rum in a measuring cup in the microwave oven or over medium-low heat in a saucepan; stir the warm chocolate into the yolk mixture.

Beat egg whites into stiff, shining peaks, and stir a quarter of them into the yolk mixture. Rapidly and delicately fold in the rest, alternating with sprinklings of almonds and siftings of flour. Turn at once into the prepared pan and bake about 25 minutes, until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.

Let cool 15 minutes before unmolding. This type of chocolate cake is always at its best at room temperature. Serve with a dusting of powdered sugar, or with the icing.

Soft Chocolate Icing: Melt 2 ounces semisweet chocolate with 1 ounce bittersweet chocolate, a pinch of salt and 11/2 tablespoons rum in double boiler over simmering water. When smooth and glistening, beat in 6 tablespoons unsalted butter (see note), 1 tablespoon at a time. Stir over cold water until cooled to spreading consistency.

Note: Use real butter or stick margarine. Do not substitute reduced-fat spreads; their higher water content often yields less-satisfactory results. -- From "Julia's Kitchen Wisdom" by Julia Child


Makes 6 cupcakes

This recipe makes only 6 cupcakes, which can be convenient if you need a treat for a special occasion but don't want a lot of calories lurking around afterward. If you need more, simply double or triple the recipe.


Cupcakes are so popular that there are bakeries devoted solely to them. They look special sitting on pretty, individual plates, and are easier to serve than cake pieces. Although the usual paper cupcake liners can be found in grocery stores, specialty stores often sell fancier ones made with foil or with decorations.


1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup unsalted butter at room temperature (1/2 stick; see note)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

1 tablespoon poppy seeds

1/2 cup buttermilk, at room temperature


3/4 cup very cold whipping cream

2 tablespoons powdered sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1/4 cup cold lemon curd (see note)

1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

To make cupcakes: Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In large bowl, with electric mixer on medium speed, cream butter and sugar until mixture is fluffy and lightens from yellow to cream color, about 1 minute. (Mixture will look sugary.) Add egg and vanilla and beat 1 minute. Mix in lemon zest and poppy seeds. Reduce speed to low and add half of the flour mixture, mixing just to incorporate it completely. Beat in buttermilk just until blended. Beat in remaining flour mixture just until smooth.

Divide batter among 6 paper-lined muffin tins, filling liner to 1/4 inch from top. Bake until tops feel firm and toothpick inserted in center of the cupcake comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Cool cupcakes 5 minutes in pan, then transfer in the paper liners to wire rack to cool thoroughly.

To make topping: In large bowl with electric mixer on high speed, beat cream, powdered sugar, vanilla and lemon curd until firm peaks form. Spread generous 1/4 cup topping over top of each cupcake, mounding it toward the center. Lightly sprinkle centers with grated lemon zest. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. (Cupcakes can be refrigerated up to 2 days.)

Note: Use real butter or stick margarine. Do not substitute reduced-fat spreads; their higher water content often yields less-satisfactory results.

Note: Find lemon curd in the jams, jellies and peanut butter section of the grocery store.






Makes one 9-inch pie; 6 to 8 servings

This recipe, a version of which appears in "Mom's Big Book of Baking," is easier to make than Key lime pie and has a more pronounced flavor because of the cream of coconut.


2 tablespoons cold water

2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin

1 15-ounce can cream of coconut, such as Coco Lopez

2/3 cup plain low-fat yogurt

1/2 cup fresh lime juice (4 to 5 medium limes)

2 teaspoons grated lime zest

1 prepared graham cracker or vanilla wafer crumb crust

Whipped cream for garnish

Place the cold water in a small stainless steel bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over the water. Let the gelatin stand until it softens, about 10 minutes.

Whisk together the cream of coconut, yogurt, lime juice and lime zest in a large mixing bowl.

Set the bowl of gelatin over a small saucepan of barely simmering water and whisk the gelatin until it dissolves, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Stir the gelatin mixture into the coconut mixture.

Pour the filling into the prepared pie shell. Cover the pie with plastic wrap and refrigerate until the filling is completely set, at least 6 hours and up to 1 day. Serve topped with whipped cream. -- From "Icebox Pies" by Lauren Chattman


Makes one 9-inch pie; 6 to 8 servings

Lime and strawberries are an unusual pairing, but they seem perfectly natural in this colorful pie.


4 eggs

1 cup granulated sugar

1 tablespoon grated lime zest

1/2 cup fresh lime juice (4 medium limes)

1/2 cup unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces (1 stick)

1/2 cup whipping cream, chilled

1 prepared crumb crust (see note)

2 cups fresh strawberries, hulled and thinly sliced

Combine the eggs, sugar and lime zest in a heavy saucepan and whisk until smooth. Add the lime juice and butter and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until the mixture is thickened, about 7 to 9 minutes. Do not allow the mixture to come to a boil.

Pour the hot lime curd through a fine strainer into a glass bowl. Place plastic wrap directly on the surface of the lime curd. Refrigerate until curd is cold and thick, at least 3 hours or up to 3 days.

In a medium mixing bowl using an electric mixer, whip the cream until soft peaks form. Gently fold the whipped cream into the lime curd and then scrape the filling into the prepared pie shell. Cover the pie with plastic wrap and refrigerate it until the filling is completely set, at least 6 hours or up to 1 day.

Just before serving, arrange the strawberry slices on concentric circles on top of the filling.

Note: For the crust, try vanilla wafers, lemon nut cookies or amaretti crumbs.



1 cup butter

2 cups flour

1/2 tsp vanilla

1 egg yolk

3/4 cup brown sugar

1. Cream butter and sugar.

2. Add egg yolk, vanilla, and flour.

3. Mix well and form into little balls, placing them on an ungreased cookie sheet.

4. Press down with a fork.

5. Bake at 15 minutes at 375'

You can also add chocolate chips or baker's chocolate.


4 slices wheat bread

4 to 6 ounces cheddar cheese, thinly sliced

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon chili powder

1 medium tomato, thinly sliced

1 avocado, thinly sliced (optional)

2 tablespoons finely chopped green onion

1/4 cup sliced black olives

1 large clove garlic, minced

1/2 teaspoon oregano

Few pinches cayenne pepper (optional)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Lay slices of wheat bread on foil-covered baking sheet. Cover each slice of bread to edges with cheese.

Mix cumin and chili powder in small bowl. Using fingertips, sprinkle spices evenly over cheese. Top with tomato, avocado, green onion, olives and garlic. Sprinkle oregano evenly over all and dust lightly with cayenne pepper.

Bake until cheese is thoroughly melted, about 6 to 8 minutes. Serve hot.


3 pounds ripe mulberries

1/2 cup lemon juice

7 cups sugar

1 bottle liquid pectin

Put berries in saucepan and crush. Heat gently until juice starts to flow. Then, simmer covered, for 15 min. Put into jelly cloth or bag and squeeze out the juice. Measure out 3 cups of juice into a very large saucepan. Add sugar and lemon juice, mix well. Put over high heat and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. At once stir in the pectin. Then, bring to a rolling boil and boil hard for 1 min., stirring constantly. Remove from heat skim off the foam, with a metal spoon. Pour quickly into hot sterilized jars and then seal. Makes about 8 1/2 pint jars.


1 1/2 cups ripe mulberries

2/3 cup mulberry juice

2 cups sugar

2 tablespoons butter

You can use this recipe for any low pectin fruit e.g.. Saskatoon's, blueberry, elderberry, raspberry, blackberry or May-apple.

Cook 1 1/2 cups of ripe mulberries, mash and drain through a fine sieve or jelly bag to obtain the juice: about 2/3 cup yield.

Mix juice with sugar and butter and cook over low heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil over medium heat and boil without stirring until soft-ball candy stage - 240 F. Remove from heat; cool until lukewarm and beat with a wooden spoon until mixture looses its gloss. Press into a buttered pan and cut into squares before the candy hardens. Keep in a tightly covered dish or freeze because this candy hardens when exposed to the air.



Makes 6 cups

Greg, owner and chef of Higgins restaurant, developed this delicious chutney and recommends it as a sauce over grilled salmon, ahi tuna, poultry and pork.

4 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

1 large yellow onion, finely chopped

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup raisins

2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger

2 tablespoons minced garlic

2 tablespoons Madras curry powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

In a medium non-aluminum pan, combine the blueberries, onion, vinegar, sugar, raisins, ginger, garlic, curry powder and salt. Bring to a slow boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat and cook gently until the onions are tender and the chutney has thickened (about 25 to 30 minutes). Stir often to avoid scorching.

Remove from heat and let cool before adding the mint. Spoon into jars and refrigerate. The chutney will keep, refrigerated, up to 3 weeks.


Makes 10 to 12 servings

3/4 cup vegetable oil

3 tablespoons dark sesame oil

3 tablespoons rice vinegar

2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons granulated sugar

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 teaspoon ground ginger or 1 tablespoon minced fresh

1 3-ounce package ramen noodles (reserve seasoning packet for another use)

1 pound chicken, cooked and chopped

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1/2 teaspoon paprika

8 cups shredded green cabbage (about 1 medium head)

2 to 3 cups shredded red cabbage (about 1/4 medium head)

2/3 cup chopped green onions (about 10)

1 cup toasted sliced almonds (4 ounces; see note)

Combine vegetable oil, sesame oil, rice vinegar, sugar, soy sauce and ginger in a bowl. Break ramen noodles into small pieces. Put in bowl with marinade and stir to evenly coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.

Sprinkle chopped cooked chicken with garlic salt and paprika. Stir to evenly coat.

In a very large bowl, combine marinade, noodles, seasoned chicken, green cabbage, red cabbage and chopped green onions. Stir until evenly mixed. Fold in sliced almonds.

Note: To toast nuts, heat in a dry skillet over medium heat until they start to brown. Stir occasionally. Be careful not to scorch them.

-- From The Cheshire Cat, Portland



by Todd Wilbur

It's America's most popular pasta sauce and now you can whip up clones of two varieties at home at a fraction of the cost. Just snag yourself a large can of tomato sauce and a few other common ingredients and get simmering. These recipes duplicate the traditional "Meat" variety of the sauce and the newer "Chunky Garden Style" version with tomato, basil and Italian cheese. Feel free to doctor these sauces up with your own creative additions just as many do to perk up real Ragu.

From Top Secret Recipes:

Meat sauce:

2 ounces ground beef

29-ounce can tomato sauce

5 teaspoons granulated sugar

4 teaspoons olive oil

1 1/2 teaspoons minced dried onions

1 1/2 teaspoons shredded Romano cheese

1/8 teaspoons ground black pepper

1 bay leaf


Brown ground beef in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add remaining ingredients, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring often. makes 2 1/2 cups ( http://www.topsecretrecipes.com )

Tomato, Basil & Italian Cheese

29-ounce can tomato sauce

1/2 cup canned diced tomatoes

5 teaspoons granulated sugar

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon shredded Romano cheese

1 teaspoon shredded parmesan cheese

1 teaspoon dried basil

1/2 teaspoon dried parsley

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

1 bay leaf

Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring often. Makes 3 cups

( http://www.topsecretrecipes.com )



Notes: This goes perfect with the Chili's Margarita Chicken and the Chili's Black Beans.

1/2 cup Diced Onions

1/2 cup Diced Tomatoes

2 Tbsp. Chopped Cilantro

Diced Jalepeno to taste (Omit the seeds)

Dice both tomatoes and onions. Chop cilantro, and add enough diced jalepeno seeds to suit your desired hotness. Mix together, and serve.


Serves 2

2 cups cubed pineapple

4 cups romaine lettuce, torn into bite-size pieces

1/4 cup snipped chives

2 tablespoons bottled Caesar dressing

2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Place pineapple cubes and lettuce in a salad bowl. Add chives and dressing. Toss well. Sprinkle top with Parmesan cheese.


To make pineapple salsa, combine 2 cups diced fresh pineapple, a squeeze of lime juice, a pinch each of ground cumin, white pepper and salt and, if desired, finely chopped cilantro or seeded, minced hot chili peppers.







Makes one 9-inch pie; 6 to 8 servings

1 pint pistachio ice cream, softened (divided)

1 prepared chocolate cookie or graham cracker crumb crust

1 pint orange sorbet, softened (divided)


Sugared pistachio nuts:

3/4 cup pistachio nuts

2 tablespoons whipping cream

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon candied orange peel (optional)

Spoon half of the pistachio ice cream into the prepared crust and smooth the top with the back of a wooden spoon. Spread half of the orange sorbet over the ice cream. Repeat with the remaining ice cream and then the sorbet. Sprinkle with sugared nuts. Cover the pie with plastic wrap and freeze it until the filling is completely set, at least 3 hours and up to 1 week. Serve frozen.

To make nuts: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine the nuts, cream, sugar and salt in a small mixing bowl. Turn the mixture out onto a baking sheet and bake until nuts are golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Let them cool completely, then mix in 1 tablespoon candied orange peel, if you wish. Nuts will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week. -- From "Icebox Pies" by Lauren Chattman


If you use a Christmas tree cookie cutter for example, you can use the green

dough for the tree shaped cookie and make the dots in the middle of the green cookie, red and yellow, colorful cookies.

3 cup all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 cup butter, room temp

1 1/4 cups sugar

1 egg

1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon almond

1 tablespoon milk

Red, green, and yellow soft gel food paste colors

Mix together flour, baking powder and salt in bowl. Beat butter and sugar on

medium high in bowl 3 minutes, until smooth. Beat in eggs and extracts. On

low beat flour mixture and milk into butter mixture just until combined.

Divide dough into thirds, shape each third into ball. Place third in clean bowl. Add red color, beat until evenly colored. Shape into disk, wrap in plastic wrap, chill 2 hours or overnight. Clean bowl and beaters. Repeat with another third of dough, coloring it green and another third coloring it yellow. Cut green disk into fourths. Return three quarters of dough to refrigerator. Roll the one quarter dough 1/4 inch thick between waxed paper. Remove top sheet. Cut dough into desired shapes with cookie cutters, cut dots out of cookies with 3/4 inch round cookie or biscuit cutter. Invert whole piece of dough onto nonstick baking sheet. Remove waxed paper. Remove dots to nonstick baking sheet. Remove scraps, wrap, refrigerate, along with sheet of cookies and dots.

Do the same with yellow dough and red dough. Keep all unused dough and unbaked cookies and dots on baking sheet refrigerated. Interchange dots using a butter knife among holes in different colored cookies. Heat oven to 350 degrees, bake cookies 6 to 8 minutes, until edges just begin to brown. Cool cookies. Repeat rolling, cutting, baking, using a quarter of dough at a time, then use refrigerated scraps. Makes about 5 dozen.


1 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup light corn syrup

1/4 cup butter

3/4 cup toasted finely chopped pecans

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup amaretto liqueur or dark rum, divided use

1/4 cup whipping cream

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

In a medium saucepan, combine brown sugar, corn syrup, butter, pecans, salt and 1/4 cup amaretto or rum. Cook over high heat, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a boil. Reduce heat to medium. Cover and cook 3 minutes. Remove cover and cook without stirring until syrup reaches 260 degrees on a candy thermometer. Pour sauce into medium bowl. Let stand 15 minutes. Gradually add cream, vanilla and remaining 1/4 cup amaretto or rum. Stir until blended. Cool to room temperature. Serve at room temperature or slightly warmed.








1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs

1/3 cup butter, melted

1/3 cup sugar

1/8 teaspoon ground ginger


24 ounces (3 8-ounce packages) cream cheese

1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk

2 cups pumpkin puree

3 large eggs

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

Praline sauce (recipe below)

Prepare crust: Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Combine graham cracker crumbs, butter, sugar and ginger. Press mixture firmly into a spring-form pan.

Prepare filling: Beat cream cheese until fluffy. Gradually beat in condensed milk. Add remaining ingredients and beat well. Bake 1 to 1 1/4 hours or until cake springs back when touched gently in center. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Drizzle warm praline sauce over each slice just before serving.


1 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup light corn syrup

1/4 cup butter

3/4 cup toasted finely chopped pecans

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup amaretto liqueur or dark rum, divided use

1/4 cup whipping cream

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

In a medium saucepan, combine brown sugar, corn syrup, butter, pecans, salt and 1/4 cup amaretto or rum. Cook over high heat, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a boil. Reduce heat to medium. Cover and cook 3 minutes. Remove cover and cook without stirring until syrup reaches 260 degrees on a candy thermometer. Pour sauce into medium bowl. Let stand 15 minutes. Gradually add cream, vanilla and remaining 1/4 cup amaretto or rum. Stir until blended. Cool to room temperature. Serve at room temperature or slightly warmed.


Makes about 1 cup

2 large red bell peppers

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened

2 shallots, minced

2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce

Cut peppers in half, seed and place, cut side down, on baking sheet. Broil until skin is blackened (1 to 2 minutes). Place pepper halves in paper bag for 1 minute to steam, then rinse and peel off blackened skin. Place in food processor or blender with butter, shallots, lemon juice and Tabasco. Process to a thick puree. Remove from blender, spoon into a small bowl, cover and refrigerate up to 24 hours ahead; allow to warm to room temperature for serving.


Even though the food is Indonesian, the term "rijsttafel"*** is a Dutch word meaning "rice table," and was used by the Dutch colonists in Indonesia to describe elaborate banquets comprised of many dishes. When my parents were entertaining guests in their home in Jakarta many years ago, my father pointed to the impressive buffet my mother had prepared and, knowing that rijsttafel was a Dutch term and wondering what the Indonesian word was, asked an Indonesian guest, "What do you call this?" The gentleman shrugged his shoulders and replied, "Food."

A typical rijsttafel may contain as many as two dozen dishes, and in order to best represent it I have made some modifications to my standard format this week. You will notice that I doubled the number of recipes by including some that I have published in the past, and that I have eliminated desserts because, except for fresh fruit, they aren't part of a traditional rijsttafel. Here is the lineup for "An

Indonesian Rijsttafel":

The following recipes are all in this collection:

Atjar Kuning (Yellow Pickles)

Satay Ayam (Chicken Satay)

Sambal Goreng Telur (Spicy Eggs)

Rempeyak Udang (Prawn Fritters)

Nasi Gurih (Fragrant Rice)

Nasi Goreng (Fried Rice)

Ayam Bali (Balinese Chicken)

Semur Daging (Beef in Soy Sauce)

Rempah (Coconut Beef Patties)

Mie Goreng (Fried Noodles)

***Apparently, the spelling of non-English words is subject to personal opinion!

Chef Henderson, who is the author of the above item, and the collector of the

associated recipes, prefers two "t's" instead of my two "f's". I have seen other

sources using both spellings. Same stuff, anyway. (a Spike the Grate comment)


(Yellow Pickles for Rijstaffel)

2 Tbsp (30 ml) vegetable oil

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 tsp (5 ml) turmeric

1 tsp (5 ml) ground coriander

1/2 tsp (2 ml) ground cumin

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Finely chopped hot chilies or cayenne pepper totaste (optional)

1/4 cup (60 ml) blanched almonds, toasted and finely ground in an electric

blender or food processor

1/4 cup (60 ml) white vinegar

12 small shallots, peeled

1 cucumber, cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch slices andthen cut into strips 1/4 inch

(5 mm) wide and 2 inches (5 cm) long

1 red bell pepper (capsicum) seeded and cut into strips 1/4 inch (5 mm) wide

and 2 inches (5 cm) long

1 carrot, peeled and cut into strips 1/4 inch (5 mm) wide and 2 inches (5 cm) long

1/4 lb (110 g) string beans (haricots), cut into 2-inch lengths

Heat the oil in a heavy saucepan over moderate heat and sauté the garlic for about 30 seconds. Add the turmeric, coriander, cumin, salt, pepper and optional hot chilies and stir for 1 minute. Stir in the ground almonds and vinegar, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for about 3 minutes. Add the shallots, cucumber, bell pepper, carrot, and green beans. Simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are heated through but still crisp. Remove from the heat and serve at room temperature. May be refrigerated for up to 3 days before serving. Makes about 4 cups (1 L).


(Spicy Peanut Sauce)

2 Tbsp (30 ml) vegetable oil

1/4 cup (60 ml) finely chopped shallots or scallions (white part only)

1 tsp (5 ml) finely chopped garlic

2 cups (500 ml) chicken stock

1/2 cup (125 ml) shelled peanuts, finely ground in an electric blender or food


2 tsp (10 ml) soy sauce

1 tsp (5 ml) dark molasses

1 tsp (5 ml) lime juice

1/4 tsp (1 ml) finely grated ginger

1/4 tsp (1 ml) finely chopped hot chilies or cayenne, or to taste

Heat the oil in a heavy skillet and cook the shallots and garlic 3 to 4 minutes, until they are soft and transparent but not brown. Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil over high heat. Add the ground peanuts, soy sauce, molasses, lime juice, ginger, and chilies or cayenne. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Allow to cool slightly before serving. Bon appetit from the Chef at World Wide Recipes



Makes 6 small servings

2 medium, firm eggplants

3 cups cherry tomatoes

Salt to taste

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil (divided)

10 leaves of fresh basil, shredded

Freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Slice the eggplants crosswise into 1/4-inch slices; cut cherry tomatoes in half. Place tomatoes and eggplant slices on nonstick baking sheet. Season with salt and 2 tablespoons olive oil , turning tomatoes and eggplant to coat evenly. Roast until soft and slightly brown, approximately 15 minutes, turning eggplant once. Remove from oven, cool and cut eggplant in quarters. Toss gently with remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, basil leaves, and salt and pepper to taste.


12 appetizers

6 chicken livers

4 water chestnuts

6 slices bacon

Brown sugar

Teriyaki sauce

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/4 cup soy sauce

2 tablespoons catsup

1/4 teaspoon pepper

2 cloves garlic, crushed

For teriyaki sauce: Combine vegetable oil, soy sauce, catsup, pepper and garlic. Set aside.

Cut each chicken liver in half. Cut each water chestnut into three pieces. Place in a small bowl. Pour teriyaki sauce on livers and water chestnuts. Refrigerate at least four hours. Drain.

Cut each bacon slice in half. Wrap a piece of liver and a piece of water chestnut in a piece of bacon. Secure with toothpick. Roll in brown sugar.

Set oven control to broil and broil rumaki 3 to 4 inches from heat, turning occasionally until bacon is crisp, about 10 minutes.


(Chicken Satay)

If you have been to Southeast Asia you have probably had satay (also spelled sate), and even if you managed to avoid eating it, you are guaranteed to have smelled it cooking. Satay stands are on virtually every street corner in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and who knows where else. This recipe calls for chicken, but you can substitute beef, pork, or lamb. I even saw turtle satay on a menu in Bali.

1 tsp (5 ml) finely chopped garlic

1 tsp (5 ml) salt

1/4 tsp (1 ml) white pepper

2 Tbsp (30 ml) soy sauce

1 Tbsp (15 ml) dark molasses

2 tsp (10 ml) fresh lime juice

2 lbs (900 g) boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs,

cut into 1-inch (2 cm) cubes

2 Tbsp (30 ml) vegetable oil

Combine the garlic, salt and pepper in a deep bowl and mash them to a paste with the back of a spoon. Mix in the soy sauce, molasses and lime juice. Add the chicken cubes and toss until they are evenly coated. Marinate in the refrigerator for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Remove the chicken from the marinade and thread it tightly, 4 or 5 pieces at a time, on small skewers (preferably Oriental wooden skewers about 6 inches (15 cm) long). Brush the oil

evenly over the chicken. Cook over charcoal (traditional) or under the kitchen broiler for 5 to 10 minutes, turning occasionally, until the chicken is crisp and brown. Serve at once, with the meat still on the skewers, accompanied by katjang sauce presented separately in a bowl. Serves 4.



Makes 1/2 cup

4 tablespoons achiote seed

Achiote is a hard red seed produced by the annatto tree. This recipe

makes a simple paste that is good for general use.

1 teaspoon crushed dried oregano, Yucatecan if possible

1 teaspoon cumin seed

1/2 teaspoon mild peppercorns

12 whole allspice

3 tablespoons water

Mix the spices together and grind 1/3 of the quantity at a time, or as much as your electric grinder can accommodate efficiently, as finely as possible.

Sift through a fine strainer and grind the residue once again. Stir the water in gradually and mix well to a stiff paste.

If you are not going to use the paste immediately, form it into a round thick cake and divide into four pieces.

Wrap well and store in the freezer. Storing it in this way makes it easier to take out a small piece at a time.

To dilute for use, crush one piece of the paste ( 1/4 of the cake) with 20 small garlic cloves and sea salt to taste and dilute to a thin cream using bitter orange juice or a mild vinegar.


2 servings

1/2 cup (4 ounces) fat-free cream cheese, softened

1 tablespoon Buitoni pesto with sun-dried tomatoes

4 (10-inch) flour tortillas

8 thin slices smoked turkey breast

4 cups shredded romaine lettuce

2 cups chopped tomatoes

1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion, optional

Combine cream cheese and pesto in small bowl; stir well. Spread mixture evenly over each tortilla. Place turkey slices, lettuce, tomato and onion over bottom third of tortillas, making sure ingredients don't touch edges.

Fold bottom edge of each tortilla toward center and gently roll until tortilla is completely wrapped around filling.

Wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 15 minutes. Cut each tortilla in half.



Serves 6

For sauce:

2 tablespoons finely minced shallots, (1 small)

4 teaspoons finely minced cornichons pickles, (about 3)

2 teaspoons finely minced capers

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons sherry or red wine vinegar

1/2 cup olive oil

1 hard-boiled egg, finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon finely minced fresh tarragon

2 teaspoons finely minced parsley

1 teaspoon finely minced chives

1/4 teaspoon salt

Combine all ingredients except salt in a bowl. Stir to combine well and season to taste with salt. Makes about 3/4 cup.

For salad:

3/4 pound grilled steak, such as flank steak, cut into thin strips

1/4 pound radishes, sliced in thin rounds

1 head escarole or 2 heads frisee or tender inner leaves of 2 heads of curly endive, torn into bite-size pieces

1/2 pound plum tomatoes, quartered

5 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and quartered lengthwise

Toss together steak, half the radishes, escarole and half the tomatoes in a large mixing bowl. Add half of the sauce gribiche and toss to mix well so everything is lightly coated with dressing.

Arrange salad in a loose mound on a platter. Scatter remaining radishes and tomatoes and eggs over top. Pass any extra dressing at table.


1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup sour cream

2 cups walnut halves

1 teaspoon vanilla

Combine sugars and sour cream in saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring until sugars dissolve. Continue cooking, without stirring, until soft ball stage (236 degrees on candy thermometer). Remove from heat. Add walnuts and vanilla. Stir until all nuts are coated. Pour onto a cookie sheet covered with either wax paper or butter. Let cool, then break into bite-size pieces. Store in air-tight container.



Serving Size: 4

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 tablespoon garlic -- minced

1 tablespoon serrano or jalapeno chili -- minced

1 1/2 pounds asparagus; snapped - steamed but slightly undercooked

2 tablespoons fish sauce or soy sauce

1 teaspoon dark soy sauce (optional)

1 tablespoon water

1 tablespoon sugar

1 cup basil -- chopped

2 large chilies of your choice -- slice diagonal into thin ovals

Heat a wok or large, deep skillet over high heat. Add oil, making sure bottom of pan is completely oiled. Add garlic and minced chili, toss until garlic begins to turn golden, about 15 seconds. Add the asparagus; stir-fry until coated with oil, about 15 seconds. Add soy sauces, sugar, basil and 1 tablespoon water; stir-fry until basil starts to wilt. Serve hot.


makes 6 to 8 appetizers

28-ounce can tomatoes, drained, crushed lightly and chopped

1/4 of medium red onion, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup fresh basil, chopped

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

1 baguette or French bread, sliced 1/2-inch thick

Optional add-ins: black olive paste, red chili flakes, minced grilled zucchini or eggplant, anchovies and toasted pine nuts

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Combine tomatoes, onion, garlic, basil, olive oil and seasoning. Mix well with spoon and set aside for 20 minutes.

Place bread rounds on baking dish. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until lightly toasted and golden brown. If desired, spray lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with dried oregano before baking.

Spoon tomatoes over toasted bread rounds and serve immediately.

Sprinkle asiago or Parmesan cheese over bread rounds before baking for extra flavor


serves 4

1 pound vine-ripened tomatoes, sliced 1/2-inch thick

1 fluid ounce balsamic vinegar

1/2 cup packed fresh basil leaves

12 ounces fresh mozzarella

1 sprinkle dry oregano leaves

Sea salt or kosher salt, to taste

Fresh ground pepper, to taste

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

On a large platter arrange sliced tomatoes and drizzle with balsamic vinegar. Place one basil leaf on top of each tomato slice.

Slice mozzarella and place on top of basil leaves. Sprinkle oregano, salt and pepper on cheese and drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil.


Serves 4


10 pounds of tomatoes, cut in two

1 tablespoon sugar

2 tablespoons kosher salt

1 bunch basil, chopped (reserve some leaves for garnish)

1 teaspoon tarragon


1 avocado, diced

12 -16 cherry tomatoes, halved (yellow, green, orange, red)

Reserved basil leaves from above

A few grinds of pepper

1 tablespoon olive oil

Put all soup ingredients in a large bowl and gently crush until juices are released. You can use a potato masher for this. Cover bowl and refrigerate overnight.

The next day, drape a large colander or sieve with four layers of cheesecloth, making sure to drape plenty of excess over the sides. Set colander inside a non-aluminum bowl or other container such as a stainless-steel stockpot that is large enough to hold all the liquid that will eventually drain through. Pour soup ingredients into cheesecloth-lined colander.

Carefully pull up sides of cheesecloth to make a bag. Find a way to suspend the bag very securely above the larger collecting bowl. You may want to leave the colander in place if possible. The bag should not touch the juice once it filters into the larger bowl. Place the bowl with the bagged tomatoes in the refrigerator. The soup will need to drain this way in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours or overnight.

Remove collected juice from larger bowl. Adjust seasoning. Pour liquid into a tall, thin, clear container (such as a glass pitcher) and return it to refrigerator. The liquid will separate, with clear floating to the top. This is the part you will serve. Pink will settle to the bottom and be discarded. You will also discard the solids in the cheesecloth bag.

When ready to serve, carefully pour clear liquid off and serve cold immediately in chilled bowl or heat to a boil in a saucepan and pour into 4 heated bowls.

Top each bowl with 3-4 cherry tomatoes and 1/4 diced avocado. Sprinkle with fresh basil leaves and a few grinds of pepper. On top, sprinkle a few drops of olive oil, which will float and sparkle.


1 can tomato soup

1/2 cup flour

1 cup sugar

1 cup dates

1 cup nuts, your choice

1 teaspoon nutmeg

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon cloves

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 tablespoon shortening


1 cup cream cheese

1 cup powdered sugar

1 tablespoon butter

1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix the first 10 ingredients together and bake for 35 minutes at 350 degrees. After cake has cooled, mix remaining ingredients together and spread over cake.


4 servings

2 medium tomatoes, thinly sliced

1 refrigerated pie crust (15 ounce package)

11/2 teaspoons crushed rosemary, divided

6 ounces shredded Swiss cheese (about 11/2 cups)

1 teaspoon basil leaves

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Remove one pie crust from pouch and soften as directed on package. Unfold crust, press out fold lines and place on foil-covered pizza pan or baking sheet. Sprinkle cheese, 1/2 teaspoon rosemary and basil over dough.

Cover cheese with overlapping tomato slices in circular pattern. Mix remaining 1 teaspoon rosemary, garlic salt and pepper. Sprinkle over tomatoes.

Fold about 1/2 inch of pie crust edge toward center of tart. Bake 20 minutes or until crust is golden brown.


Do not seed tomatoes. The seeds contain the significant nutritional benefits.

Three to four medium tomatoes weigh about 1 pound. One pound of fresh tomatoes, peeled and seeded, will produce about 11/2 cups pulp.

To peel, submerge tomatoes in boiling water for 30 seconds, then plunge into cold water, drain and slip off skins.

Using a serrated knife, slice tomatoes lengthwise, rather than crosswise, to retain juice.

Keep out of direct sunlight.

Store with stem up to prevent bruising. Dented and slightly wrinkled tomatoes are considered bruised.


10 ounces tortilla chips

8 ounces shredded Monterey jack cheese

12 ounces white tuna in water -- drained and flaked

1 cup chopped tomato

1/2 cup pickled jalapeno -- slices

1/2 cup sliced green onions



Sour cream

Arrange tortilla chips in a single layer, overlapping edges, in a 15- x 10- x 1-inch jellyroll pan or on ovenproof plates. Sprinkle evenly with 1 cup cheese, tuna, tomato, jalapeno slices, and sliced green onion. Top with remaining cheese.

Bake at 375 degrees F. for 8 minutes or until cheese melts. Top with salsa, guacamole, and sour cream. Yield: 8 appetizer or 4 main-dish servings.



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