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).

ANGEL FOOD CAKE WITH PINEAPPLE

BAG'N SEASON CHICKEN DUMPLINGS

BARBADOS RECIPES

BEEF AND BROCCOLI

BLACKBERRY LIQUEUR

BLUE PLUM PANDOWDY

BOSTON BROWN BREAD I

BOSTON BROWN BREAD II

BRUSCHETTA

BUTTERNUT SQUASH GNOCCHI

CAJUN HONEY WINGS

CHALLAH

CHEWY CHOCOLATE OREO COOKIES

CHICKEN FRICASSEE WITH APPLES

CHICKEN JAMBALAYA

CHILI PIZZA

CHIPOTLE CORN CHOWDER WITH SHIITAKE

CRAB AND BRIE BISQUE

CRITTER CRUNCH

CURRIED CHICKEN WITH APPLES AND

FAMILY FAVORITE MEAT LOAF

FIESTA TACOS

FIG CHUTNEY

FILLED APPLE PECAN CAKE

FONTINA ZUPPA WITH MUSHROOMS AND BAC

GOLDEN BELL PEPPER JELLY

GREEK SCRAMBLE

GRILLED TENDERLOIN WRAPPED IN PANCE

GUACAMOLE FOR ONE

HOMEMADE CHEESE WHIZ

KRAUT CAKE I

KRAUT CAKE II

KRAUT CAKE III

KRAUT CAKE IV

MACADAMIA CRUSTED MAHI MAHI

MAHOGANY CHICKEN DRUMETTES

PASTA WITH RAPID RATATOUILLE SAUCE

PASTA WITH RAPID RATATOUILLE SAUCE.d

PEACH MELBA COBBLER

PEANUT BUTTER PICNIC CAKE

PEAR DAIQUIRI

PORK CHOPS IN GRAPE SAUCE

PORK CORDON BLEU

PUMPKIN MUFFINS

QUICK CURRIED PUMPKIN SOUP

QUICK MIXED GRAIN PAN ROLLS

RIB CHOP MOLÉ

ROAST CHICKEN WITH HERBS AND BUTTER

ROASTED MEDITERRANEAN VEGETABLE SOUP

ROSEMARY FOCACCIA SPECIALE

SCAMPI AND BASMATI RICE

SCAMPI AND BASMATI RICE

SOPA DE TORTILLA

SOURDOUGH STRAWBERRY WAFFLES

SOUTHWESTERN FLANK STEAK

SOUTHWESTERN FLANK STEAK

SPIKE'S CHILI CON CARNE

STOVE TOP TAMALE PIE

SWEET POTATO CASSEROLE

TACO CHICKEN FINGERS

TERIYAKI CHICKEN AND NOODLES

TEXAS STYLE SLOPPY JOES

TUNA STEAKS WITH AVOCADO HASH

TURKEY TACOS with RED PEPPER SALSA

TURKEY TACOS with RED PEPPER SALSA

WILD RICE WITH CHERRIES AND HAZELNUT

 

ANGEL FOOD CAKE WITH PINEAPPLE

 

1 Angel Food Cake Mix

20 ounces crushed pineapple, undrained

 

Mix well. Pour into a 9X13 pan sprayed with cooking spray. Bake as directed on cake mix box, for approximately 30 minutes. Cool and serve with Cool Whip.

BAG 'N SEASON CHICKEN & DUMPLINGS

1 package McCormick(r) Bag 'n Season(r) Country Style Chicken

1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts

2 tablespoons flour

2 cups water

1 cup frozen peas, thawed

1 can (5 ounces) buttermilk refrigerator biscuits, cut into quarters

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Arrange cooking bag in 13x9x2-inch baking pan. Place chicken in a single layer in the bag.

2. In a medium bowl, combine Sauce Blend with flour; gradually add water and stir until smooth. Stir in peas and pour over chicken. Place biscuit pieces in the bag over the chicken.

3. Close bag loosely with nylon tie. Cut 4 small holes in top of bag to allow steam to escape. Bake 40 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes. Cut across top of bag and remove chicken and dumplings.

BARBADOS RECIPES

BAJAN SEASONING HOT SAUCE

This seasoning is found in almost every home in Barbados, and is the secret

to the success of many mouth-watering Bajan dishes. One of the favorite uses

is to place it between the meat and skin of chicken pieces before grilling,

baking or frying.

Recipe By: Anne-Marie Whitaker of Barbados

Heat Scale: Hot

1 pound Onions -- coarsely chopped

5 ounces Green Onions -- coarsely chopped

8 cloves Garlic

4 Bonney Chilies (Habaneros) -- stemmed and seeded

2 ounces fresh Parsley -- finely chopped

2 ounces fresh Thyme -- stems removed

2 ounces fresh Marjoram -- stems removed

1 1/2 cups Vinegar

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon ground Cloves

1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper

3 tablespoons Salt

In a food processor, combine onions, green onions, garlic and chilies; process

to a coarse paste; transfer mixture to a medium bowl. In food processor or

blender, place parsley, thyme, marjoram and vinegar; liquefy and add to

onion paste. Add remaining ingredients; mix well. Cover and refrigerate a full

week before using. Mixture will keep in refrigerator at least six months. Yield:

2-3 cups

Bajan Baked Chicken

10 green onions, chopped

1 medium-size onion, diced

1 bell pepper, seeded and diced

1 Scotch bonnet pepper or jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced

3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons butter, softened

1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley

1/4 cup lime juice

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

4 chicken thighs

4 chicken drumsticks

In a food processor fitted with a steel blade, place all of the ingredients except the chicken. Process for 30 seconds, forming a paste. Scrape the sides at least once during the processing. Place the chicken in a bowl, covering it with the paste. Force the paste into any crevices in the chicken. Marinate for 4 to 6 hours.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place the chicken in a baking dish in a single layer and bake for 45 minutes, until the meat pulls easily from the bone. Turn the chicken after 20 minutes and baste with the pan juices. Serve with rice, and curried vegetables.

Note: Chopped seasoning is a popular blend of spices on the Caribbean island

of Barbados. Bajans, as the residents are known, use the blend of seasonings

to marinate chicken, fish (especially fried flying fish), and pork.

Tom's "Lotties True Bajan Hot Pepper Sauce" Knockoff

Recipe By :Tom Greaves

12 medium Habaneros -- stemmed and seeded

2 large Cayenne peppers -- stemmed and seeded

15 ounces sliced mango -- drained [1 can]

1 cup cheap yellow mustard

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

5 tablespoons white vinegar

1 tablespoon curry powder

2 teaspoons cumin

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 teaspoon salt -- or to taste

1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Lotties True Bajan Premium Hot Pepper Sauce has been my favorite hot sauce

for years. Early in 1996, my sources for this started to dry up and I now

understand that they have discontinued production. Numerous letters to the

home office in Barbados went unanswered. As I nervously approached the

bottom of my last jar, I decided it was time to make it for myself. So using my

trusty gas chromatograph analyzer and utilizing mass spectroscopy techniques

learned in Nuclear Engineering 401, I ventured forth and duplicated the recipe. The ingredients shown on the label were: Hot peppers, mustard, vinegar, sugar, salt, onion and garlic. Analysis showed that there was also mango, curry, cumin, chili powder and black pepper. And now, the directions: Place the seeded peppers and vinegar in a blender and grind it fine. Slowly add the other ingredients and process until smooth. Pour into two 12-ounce Lotties jars.

Bajan Spice Paste

yields 1 cup

1/2 cup virgin olive oil

juice of 1 lime

2 Tbsp. packed thyme leaves, roughly chopped

2 Tbsp. packed sage leaves, roughly chopped

2Tbsp packed basil leaves, roughly chopped

2 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped

1 Scotch bonnet chili, seeded and minced

3 scallions, minced

2 small inner stalks celery, minced

1/2 tsp. hot paprika

1/4 tsp. ground cloves

1/4 tsp. ground mace

1/4 tsp. salt

freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. To prepare Bajan spice paste, place oil, lime juice, herbs and garlic in

a blender or food processor, and blend until fairly smooth.

2. Transfer to a mixing bowl and add the chili, scallions, and celery.

3. Stir in the paprika, cloves, mace, salt, and pepper. Keep refrigerated.

BEEF AND BROCCOLI

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

3/4 pound thin beef strips

2 cups fresh broccoli florets (or 1 16-oz. bag frozen)

1 package McCormick(r) Brown Gravy Mix

1 cup water

1/4 teaspoon McCormick(r) Gourmet CollectionTM Cracked Black Pepper

1. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add beef strips; sauté 3-4 minutes; add in broccoli.

2. Combine Gravy Mix, water and black pepper. Pour over beef mixture. Stir and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer 5-8 minutes or until broccoli is tender.

Optional: Add 1/4 teaspoon McCormick(r) Ground Ginger and 1 cup sliced fresh

mushrooms.

BLACKBERRY LIQUEUR

Makes 4 to 6 cups

4 pounds ripe blackberries (14 cups)

6 cups granulated sugar

3 cups gin

Place the blackberries and sugar in a gallon glass jar. Place the jar in a warm place until the juice is drawn from the berries, about 8 hours. Press juices through a food mill or fine-mesh strainer; discard berries and seeds.

Wash jars or bottles, enough to hold 6 cups liquid. Measure out berry juice. Measure out an equal amount of gin. Stir juice and gin together. Pour into the jars or bottles. Store in a cool, dark place for 3 months before serving. -- Adapted from "Art of Preserving" by Jan Berry

BLUE PLUM PANDOWDY

Have ready to use, an 8"x8" square, or round, deep dish.

Pastry

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup firm butter

2-3 Tablespoons milk

Combine dry ingredients. Cut butter into flour mixture. Sprinkle milk over and toss. Gather into a flat disk.

Roll out 1" larger all around than baking dish you are going to use. Cover pastry until ready to transfer to dish.

Filling

3 pounds blue plums (Italian Prune Plums)

1 teaspoon almond extract

3 Tablespoons butter, optional

Dash salt

3 Tablespoons flour

Preheat oven to 375ºF.

Wash plums. Cut in halves and pit. Place 1/3 plums in baking dish. Combine dry ingredients. Sprinkle 1/3 of dry sugar mixture over plums in dish. Add 1/3 more of the plums and sprinkle with 1/3 more of the sugar. Repeat one more time. Sprinkle almond extract and lemon zest over. Dot with butter, if desired.

Dampen edge of baking dish. Transfer rolled out pastry to dish and seal to edge of dish. Crimp edge. Brush with milk and sprinkle with sugar.

Bake for 45 minutes. Remove dish from oven and "dowdy" crust by cutting through the top in irregular order with a sharp knife. Return to oven until filling bubbles up well through cuts made in crust. Bubbles should appear thickened. Will take 15-25 minutes to complete.

Serve warm, spooning into bowls. Pass light cream, if desired, or top with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Makes 8-9 servings.

BOSTON BROWN BREAD I

1 cup unsifted whole wheat flour

1 cup unsifted rye flour

1 cup corn meal

1 cup seeded raisins or 1 cup chopped walnut meats

1-1/2 tsp baking soda

1-1/2 tsp salt

1/4 cup molasses

2 cup sour milk or buttermilk

Combine all the dry ingredients. Stir in molasses and sour milk or buttermilk.

Fill a greased or oiled 2 qt covered brown bread or pudding mold or coffee

can, 2/3 full then grease the cover. Cover closely. Set the mold on a rack

in a large kettle. Pour in boiling water to half the depth of mold. Cover

tightly and steam 3-1/2 hours, keeping water boiling throughout entire cooking

period, and replenishing it with boiling water as needed. When done, remove

from water, take off lid, run a spatula between the bread and mold to loosen

it, then invert on a cake cooler. Serve hot. Leftovers can be cooled and

re-warmed in a double-boiler.

BOSTON BROWN BREAD II

1 large box dates

1/2 box raisins (optional)

1 teaspoon baking soda, heaping

2 Tbsp butter

2 cups boiling water

2 cups sugar

2 eggs, well beaten

2 cups whole wheat flour

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

2 teaspoons vanilla

2 cups white flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 nutmeg

Mix dates and raisins. Then add baking soda, butter and boiling water. Mix and let set overnight.

Mix all the remaining ingredients and then mix with fruit and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes at 325 degrees. You may bake in cans or loaf pans. If using cans fill a little over half full. Makes 2 large loaf pans or 3 1-lb coffee cans or 6 #303 vegetable cans.

Note: You can use 3 cups white flour and 1 cup of whole wheat if preferred.

BRUSCHETTA

8 Roma tomatoes seeded, and finely diced

3 finely chopped garlic cloves

5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil (NOT dried!)

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 baguette, 2 1/2 - 3 inches in diameter, cut in about 20, 1/4 inch slices

3 whole garlic cloves

In a large bowl, add the tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, basil, salt and pepper. Stir the ingredients until well mixed and let them rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes.

Toast both sides of the bread slices under the broiler until well-browned. When the slices are cool enough to handle rub them on both sides with the garlic cloves. Top each slice with a heaping teaspoon of the tomato mixture.

BUTTERNUT SQUASH GNOCCHI

WITH SAGE VIN BLANC

Makes 6 servings Gnocchi:

1 butternut squash (about 10 inches long)

2 eggs, beaten

1 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 to 2 cups all-purpose flour

Sage Vin Blanc:

1/4 cup dry white wine

2 cups whipping cream

Salt

3 tablespoons minced fresh sage

About 1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese (4 ounces)

To make gnocchi: The day before you make the gnocchi, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut the squash in half lengthwise; place cut side down on a baking sheet, and cover loosely with foil. Bake squash until tender, about 45 minutes. Allow squash to cool completely. Scoop out and discard the seeds. Scoop out pulp and place in a fine-mesh sieve; place sieve over a bowl, cover and refrigerate, and allow to drain overnight.

The next day, place squash in the bowl of a food processor and puree for as long as it takes the mixture to become very smooth. Transfer squash to a large bowl and add beaten eggs and salt, blending well. Add about 11/2 cups of flour and mix until well-combined. The dough should be sticky, having the consistency of thick glue. Add more flour, a little at a time, as needed, until you achieve the right consistency. The mixture should not be firm like dough. Meanwhile, make the Sage Vin Blanc.

To make Sage Vin Blanc: In a small, heavy saucepan, bring the wine to a simmer, reducing it by half. Add the cream, salt and sage. Bring to a boil and reduce heat, simmering the sauce until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon (about 2 to 3 minutes). Add Parmigiano to taste, mixing well. Set aside.

To cook gnocchi: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Pour about half of the gnocchi mixture into a gallon-size freezer bag. Seal the bag. Use kitchen scissors to cut 1 bottom corner off the bag (about 1/2 inch across). Grip the top part of the bag in your right hand, over the bubbling water, and have scissors at the ready in your left. Gently squeeze the bag until a 1- to 11/2-inch piece of gnocchi falls out, then snip the batter quickly and decisively until it falls into the water. Very quickly repeat the process until 12 gnocchi are boiling at once. When the gnocchi rise to the surface (about 2 to 4 minutes), cook another 2 minutes, keeping the water at a boil. Remove one of the gnocchi and cut through the center. If it's still doughy, continue to cook another minute. Remove cooked gnocchi to a large, shallow bowl and keep warm while continuing to cook the remaining gnocchi. Reheat Sage Vin Blanc. Fill serving bowls with gnocchi and ladle over the sauce. Pass the Parmigiano-Reggiano and a glass of Vietti Arneis.

-- From Kurt Spak, chef at Caprial's Bistro

CAJUN HONEY WINGS

KFC(r)

by Todd Wilbur

When the "Limited time only" signs come down for this one, we'll all smile. Because now we've got a clone recipe that'll closely duplicate the sweet and spicy sauce on these amazing chicken wings. The Colonel's people coat the wings with a KFC-style breading before frying them up and adding the Cajun sauce. But you don't need wings to put this sauce to work. This recipe makes 1 cup of the sauce that you can use to coat beef, pork or other chicken parts. This recipe requires the meat variety of Paul Prudhomme's Magic Seasoning Blends, but it will also work with other Cajun seasoning blends available in most markets.

Sauce

1/4 cup ketchup

1 cup water

3/4 cup white vinegar

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/3 honey

4 teaspoons Chef Paul Prudhomme's Meat Magic

1 tablespoon canned green chilies, minced

1 1/4 teaspoons chili powder

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke (hickory flavor)

1/8 teaspoon dried thyme

6 to 8 cups vegetable shortening

1 egg, beaten

1 cup milk

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 1/2 teaspoons salt

3/4 teaspoon pepper

3/4 teaspoon MSG (Accent Flavor Enhancer)

20 chicken wing pieces

1. Combine the sauce ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir until ingredients are well combined and bring to a boil. Then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 20-25 minutes or until thickened.

2. As sauce is simmering, heat up 6 to 8 cups of shortening in a deep fryer set to 350 degrees.

3. Combine the beaten egg with the milk in a small bowl.

4. In another small bowl, combine the flour, salt, pepper, and MSG.

5. When shortening is hot, dip each wing first in the flour mixture, then into the milk and egg mixture, and back into the flour. Arrange wings on a plate until each one is coated with batter.

6. Fry the wings in the shortening for 9 to 12 minutes or until light golden brown. If you have a small fryer, you may wish to fry 10 of the wings at a time. Drain on paper towels or a rack.

7. When the sauce is done, brush the entire surface of each wing with a coating of sauce. Serve immediately. (http://www.topsecretrecipes.com)

Makes 2 to 4 servings (20 wings).

CHALLAH

1/3 cup warm water (110-115° F.)

1 package dry yeast (1 Tablespoon)

1 teaspoon sugar

4 1/2 cups bread flour (20 ounces)

3 Tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons salt

1/3 cup oil

2 eggs plus enough water to make 1 cup total

Stir together the sugar, yeast and water. Let stand for 5-10 minutes.

To make by hand or with heavy mixer: Break eggs into 1 cup glass measure. Add warm water to 1 cup line. Empty this into large bowl. Add oil. Whisk together. Add the rest of the sugar and approximately 1/3 of the flour. Mix together well. Add yeast mixture and beat for about 2 minutes. Combine salt with remaining flour. Add about 1/2 of the flour and stir until flour is worked in. Set aside 1/2 cup of remaining flour. Gradually add the rest of the flour, working in as best you can. Sprinkle the 1/2 cup of flour you set aside onto counter top. Turn out dough mixture and knead for about 10 minutes. (Set a timer--you will never believe how long 10 minutes takes.)

Note: challah dough should be quite soft--not sticking to your hands but almost doing so. The 1/2 cup of flour will be worked into the dough when you finish. If you must, work in a little extra flour, but no more than essential to have a dough that can be handled.

To make with heavy-duty food processor: Fit dough blade in workbowl. Add all of the flour, salt and sugar. Pulse to combine. Break eggs into a 2 cup glass measure and add cold water to 1 cup line. Add 1/3 cup oil. Whisk together in cup to break up eggs.

Turn processor on and pour the yeast mixture in through the small feed tube, then continue running the machine as you pour in the cold water-egg-oil mixture in a steady stream. Mix until dough forms a ball and cleans the side of the bowl. Challah dough should be quite soft--almost clinging to the sides of the workbowl, but not really sticking. (If it is sticking, add flour as machine runs, by the tablespoons until the ball will revolve.) Continue processing for 60 seconds to knead.

To finish, both methods: Remove the dough to an oiled bowl or a zip-top bag. Cover bowl with oiled plastic wrap or zip bag shut. Let rise in a warm place (75-85° F.) until doubled. Time will vary, depending on room temperature, from 45 minutes to 1 1/2 hours.

Spray an area of your counter top where you wish to shape bread. Empty dough out gently (don't punch down). Form dough into a long narrow shape about 15-18" long. Place this on oiled baking sheet. With knife or scissors, cut dough into 3 long pieces for braiding. Start braiding in the middle and work to both ends. Punch each end and tuck under loaf. Cover loosely with oiled wrap and set aside to rise until doubled. Preheat oven to 375° F. before dough has fully doubled.

Whisk glaze together: 1 egg, 1-teaspoon water, pinch salt. When dough has doubled, brush on glaze. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake in lower third of oven for 20 minutes, then lower temperature to 350° F. and bake 10-15 minutes longer, until loaf is golden. Cool on rack.

CHEWY CHOCOLATE OREO COOKIES

1 1/4 cups Butter or Margarine -- softened

2 cups Sugar

2 Eggs

2 teaspoons Vanilla

2 cups Flour

3/4 cup Cocoa Powder

1 teaspoon Baking Soda

1/2 teaspoon Salt

Butter Cream Frosting:

1 pound Powdered Sugar

1/4 cup Flour

1/4 cup Vegetable Shortening

1 teaspoon Clear Vanilla

1 tablespoon White Corn Syrup

1 tablespoon Milk -- (up to 3 Tbsp.)

Cookies:

Cream margarine, sugar and eggs in a large mixing bowl. Add vanilla; combine

flour, cocoa, soda and salt in another bowl, then add to creamed mixture. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto greased baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees F for 8 - 9 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

Frosting:

In a medium bowl mix powdered sugar and flour, then make a well in the

middle. Add all other ingredients except Milk to center of bowl, then begin

mixing with electric mixer. Add milk, one Tbsp. at a time until frosting is

desired consistency.

Spread butter cream frosting between cookies to make sandwiches.

www.realfood4realpeople.com

CHICKEN FRICASSEE WITH APPLES

AND SOUR CREAM SAUCE

4 skinless, boneless chicken thighs -- (about 3/4 pound)

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons dried marjoram leaves

1/3 cup buttermilk (or skim milk)

3 medium unpeeled tart red cooking apples -- cut into 8 wedges

1 (16-ounce) bag frozen small whole onions -- thawed

1 (14 1/2-ounce) can ready-to-serve chicken broth

2/3 cup reduced-fat sour cream

Hot cooked mashed potatoes or noodles -- if desired

 

Remove fat from chicken. Mix flour and marjoram in shallow dish or resealable plastic bag. Dip chicken into buttermilk, then coat with flour mixture.

Spray 12-inch nonstick skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium heat. Cook chicken in skillet about 5 minutes, turning once, until brown. Add apples, onions and broth. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer about 10 minutes or until juice of chicken is no longer pink when centers of thickest pieces are cut. Remove chicken and onion mixture from skillet, using slotted spoon; keep warm.

Skim fat from liquid in skillet. Heat liquid to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer uncovered about 6 minutes or until liquid is reduced to 1/3 cup. Stir sour cream into liquid in skillet. Heat over medium heat just until heated through. Serve chicken and onion mixture on mashed potatoes or noodles; pour sauce over chicken. Yield: 4 servings

CHICKEN JAMBALAYA

Makes10 servings

1 pound andouille sausage, cut 1/4-inch slices

1 pound cooked tasso, diced, or ham

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into bite-size pieces

Vegetable oil (optional)

2 cups diced onion

1 small to medium red bell pepper, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

3 stalks celery, diced

1 6-ounce can tomato paste

6 cups chicken broth or water (divided)

1 14 1/2-ounce can stewed or whole tomatoes, crushed

2 to 3 tablespoons Cajun seasoning, or to taste

2 bay leaves

Salt to taste

1 10-ounce package frozen peas

6 green onions, thinly sliced

3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

9 cups cooked rice (3 cups raw)

 

In a heavy sauté pan, brown sausage and tasso ; remove and set aside. Add chicken and cook until browned; remove and set aside. Adding oil if needed, add onion, bell pepper, garlic and celery. Sauté about 30 seconds. Add tomato paste and cook, stirring often, until vegetables are browned. Deglaze pan with 2 cups of stock and stir until sauce thickens. Add remainder of broth and stewed or whole tomatoes.

Add seasoning, bay leaves and salt, stirring well; reduce heat to medium and simmer about 10 minutes. Add meat and cook about 25 minutes. Stir in peas and green onions, and cook 10 minutes more, uncovered.

Turn heat off and add parsley, reserving some for garnish. Remove the bay leaves. Serve over cooked rice. -- From Norma Broussard, Norma's Creole/Cajun Kitchen

CHILI PIZZA

1 pound ground beef

1 package (1.25 ounces) McCormick(r) Chili Seasoning

1 can (14 1/2 ounces) stewed tomatoes, cut up

1 can (14 1/2 ounces) pinto or kidney beans, undrained

8 (burrito size) large flour tortillas

2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese

1. Brown ground beef; drain. Stir in seasoning mix, stewed tomatoes and beans; cook 5 minutes.

2. Arrange tortillas in a circle on a 12-inch pizza pan; overlap edges where needed.

3. Spoon ground beef mixture onto tortillas. Top with cheese. Bake in 400°F oven 5-10 minutes or until cheese melts. Garnish with sliced black olives and green onion, if desired.

 

 

 

CHIPOTLE CORN CHOWDER

WITH SHIITAKE MUSHROOMS

2 cans chicken broth

1 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups diced potatoes (about 10 ounces)

1 pound package frozen corn

1-2 dried chipotle chili peppers, seeded*

10 Shiitake mushrooms**

1 medium onion, diced

1/2 red bell pepper, julienned

4 Tablespoons butter

3 Tablespoons flour

1 cup half & half (may use milk)

1 1/2 cups milk

1 teaspoon liquid smoke (optional)

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon sugar

2 Tablespoons minced parsley

*Cut off top of pepper and split down one side. Scrape out seeds.

**Remove stems from cleaned mushrooms. Use as directed. Slice tops in 1/2" slices and set aside.

Add chicken broth, salt, potatoes, mushroom stems, seeded chipotle peppers and corn to stockpot. Simmer until potatoes are tender (about 10-15 minutes).

Melt butter in sauté pan. Sauté red bell pepper strips for 3 minutes. Add onions and sliced mushroom tops and continue to sauté until onions are translucent. Stir in flour and continue cooking, stirring, to cook flour for about 2 minutes.

Transfer the cooked mushroom stems, chipotle peppers, half of the potatoes and half of the corn to food processor with metal blade inserted, or to a food mill. Purée. Add mixture back to stockpot. Add the sautéed vegetables, cream, milk and seasonings. Return to a gentle simmer, stirring to be certain to not scorch. Add parsley.

Ladle into soup bowls. Serve with a hearty bread.

CRAB AND BRIE BISQUE

Enriched Fish Stock

1 bottle clam juice

1 medium onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, smashed

2 large mushrooms, sliced

1 1/4 cups dry sherry

1 3/4 cups water

6 peppercorns

2 bay leaves

2 sprigs thyme (1/2 teaspoon dried)

Combine and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes. Strain and reserve. Makes approximately 2 cups.

Soup

1/3 cup butter

1/3 cup flour

2 cups enriched fish stock (above)

1 cup milk

1 package lump crab meat, thawed and flaked (8 oz. pkg.)

2 1/2 cups milk

3/4 cup heavy cream

5 drops Tabasco

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

8 ounces Brie cheese, divided: 6 ounces/2 ounces

Chives, small amount, chopped, for garnish

Melt butter in a 5 quart pot. Stir in flour and cook 2 minutes. Add enriched fish stock and 1 cup milk. Stir in and simmer 2 more minutes. Add crabmeat and heat gently 5 minutes.

Heat the remaining milk and cream with Tabasco and salt added in a large microwave-safe container until bubbles start to form around the edges. Do not boil. Add crab mixture.

Cut 6 ounces Brie cheese into small pieces, rind removed, and add to hot soup in microwave container. Stir to melt. Cut remaining 2 ounces of Brie into small pieces and reserve to add directly to soup bowls when serving.

Let soup stand 15 minutes to blend, then reheat in microwave on defrost setting for 5 minutes.

To serve:

Place a small piece of Brie in soup bowl. Ladle soup over and sprinkle with a few minced chives.

Time Management

Enriched fish stock may be prepared a day or two in advance and refrigerated until ready to complete soup. The rest of the soup should be made no more than 1-2 hours before serving. Reheat in microwave, being very careful not to boil.

CRITTER CRUNCH

3 tablespoons brown sugar

3 tablespoons reduced-calorie stick margarine

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 cup animal-shaped crackers

1 cup honey-flavored bear-shaped graham crackers

1 cup crispy corn-rice cereal squares

1 cup whole-grain toasted oat cereal

1 cup tiny unsalted pretzels

1 cup bite-sized whole-wheat cereal biscuit

with raisins

Combine sugar and margarine in a small bowl. Microwave at HIGH for 1 minute

or until margarine melts and sugar dissolves; stir in cinnamon.

Combine animal-shaped crackers and next 5 ingredients in a 13 x 9 x 2-inch

baking dish; drizzle with margarine mixture, tossing gently to coat.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cool completely;

store in an airtight container. Yield: 7 cups (serving size: 1 cup).

CURRIED CHICKEN WITH APPLES AND SWEET POTATOES

by Sam Gugino

WINE RECOMMENDATION: Curried Chicken with Apples and Sweet Potatoes offers a unique blend of intense flavors that make a perfect counterpoint to the floral aromatic qualities and light, ripe fruit flavors of Riesling. A dry Riesling from New York's Finger Lakes region, or Washington State would be a perfect accompaniment to this dish.

1 cup basmati rice

Salt

24 ounces boneless and skinless chicken breasts or chicken tenders

1 1/2 tablespoons canola or peanut oil

1 large sweet potato, 12 to 16 ounces

1 medium onion, about 8 ounces

1 rib celery

1 1/2 tablespoons curry powder

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

One 14-ounce can low sodium, fat-free chicken broth

1 large crisp apple such as Granny Smith

One 5-ounce can evaporated milk

3 or 4 sprigs fresh cilantro

1) Run the hot-water tap while you put the rice and 1 teaspoon salt in a 2-quart saucepan. Add 2 cups hot tap water. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low and cook for 10 minutes. Turn the heat off and keep covered until ready to serve. (Or put the rice, salt, and hot tap water in a 2-quart microwave-safe container. Cover and put in a microwave oven on high power for 10 minutes. Keep covered until ready to serve.)

2) Meanwhile, put a 12-inch sauté pan or Dutch oven over high heat. Cut the chicken into 1-inch cubes. Add the oil to the pan. Season the chicken with salt and add to the pan. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring once or twice to brown evenly.

3) While the chicken cooks, peel the sweet potato and cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Remove the chicken to a platter. Add the sweet potato to the pan and stir. Peel and chop the onion. Trim the celery and cut crosswise into crescents, about 1/4 to 1/2 inch wide. Add the onion and celery to the pan. Stir and cook for 1 minute.

4) Add the curry powder, cayenne, and flour to the pan. Stir well and cook for 1 minute. Add the chicken broth. Stir well, cover, and bring to a boil over high heat. Meanwhile, core and cut the apple into 1-inch cubes. Do not peel.

5) Add the chicken, apple and evaporated milk to the pan. Stir well, cover and bring to a boil again. Uncover and cook for about 3 minutes, until slightly thickened, stirring periodically. As the curried chicken cooks, chop cilantro. Serve the curry over rice sprinkled with cilantro.

Serves 4

FAMILY FAVORITE MEAT LOAF

1 package McCormick(r) Bag 'n Season(r) Meat Loaf

2 slices bread, crumbled*

3/4 cup ketchup, divided

2 pounds ground chuck or lean ground beef

1 tablespoon flour

1 egg

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Arrange opened roasting bag in 13 x 9-inch baking pan. Add flour to bag; shake to coat well. Combine seasoning mix with bread, egg, and 1/4 cup ketchup in a large bowl. Add meat; mix well. Shape into a loaf, about 8 x 4 inches.

2. Place meat loaf in bag. Pour remaining ketchup over meat. Close bag loosely with nylon tie. Cut 4 small holes in top of bag to allow steam to escape.

3. Bake in lower half of oven 1 hour. Let stand 5 minutes. Cut open bag; remove meat loaf.

*May substitute crumbled bread with 3 tablespoons unseasoned dry bread crumbs.

FIESTA TACOS

1 pound ground beef or ground turkey

1 package (1.25 ounces) McCormick(r) Taco Seasoning

3/4 cup water

12 taco shells

assorted toppings such as lettuce, tomato, cheese

1. Brown ground beef or ground turkey. Drain fat.

2. Stir in seasoning and water. Bring to a boil, reduce and simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Spoon into warmed taco shells. Top with tomato, shredded Cheddar cheese, and/or shredded lettuce.

FIG CHUTNEY

Makes 4 (8-ounce) jars

1 medium lime

1 medium lemon

4 cups ripe figs, measured after peeling and quartering

1 (8 1/4-ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained

2 tablespoons molasses

4 cups sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups seedless white raisins

3 hot red peppers

1 1/2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce

1 teaspoon whole cloves

1 (16-ounce) can whole berry cranberry sauce

1 cup finely sliced pecans

Wash and finely slice lime and lemon, leaving peel on. Place in blender and chop. Combine fruit slices and remaining ingredients except pecans in a large heavy kettle and cook over medium heat 45 to 60 minutes or until thick.

Stir often to prevent sticking. Add pecans about 5 minutes before removing from heat. Remove hot peppers or, if you like a hot chutney, chop peppers and return to mixture. Pour into sterilized jars. Seal immediately. Process in boiling water bath for 15 minutes.

FILLED APPLE PECAN CAKE

Filling: (Make before starting cake)

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

1/3 cup sugar

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon rum extract (may use vanilla)

1/3 cup candied ginger, cut into 1/4" dice (2 ounces)

Put cold cream cheese into bowl and soften in microwave for 30 seconds. Stir in sugar, egg, and extract with wire whisk. Be sure this is smooth before adding the ginger. Add ginger and stir. Place the bowl in your freezer to chill while you assemble the cake. 20 minutes will help it to stiffen and spoon out easier.

Cake:

1-2 Granny Smith apples (purchase 9-10 ounces of apples. You may need 1 1/2

apples)

2 eggs

1 cup sugar

3/4 cup oil

2 cups all-purpose flour (8 ounces)

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon cloves

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup pecans

Preheat oven to 325° F.. Grease and flour a 12 cup tube-type pan. Core apples and cut into wedges-about 12 per apple. Set aside.

Processor method:

Place metal blade in workbowl. Add eggs and sugar. Run machine for 1 minute. Pour in oil through feed tube while machine runs and run for 1 additional minute.

Add 1/2 of the apples. Chop by using 6 pulses. Add remaining apples and pulse 7 additional times.

Sift dry ingredients into workbowl. Put pecans on the top. Pulse 2 times, scrape sides and pulse 2 more times.

Mixer method:

Cut apples up into a half inch dice. Set aside.

Put eggs, sugar and oil into bowl of mixer. Beat for 3 minutes.

Sift dry ingredients into mixing bowl. Beat on low speed until all flour disappears. Coarsely chop nuts. Stir in apples and nuts by hand.

Both methods--to finish:

Transfer batter to prepared pan. Remove chilled filling from freezer. Using 2 serving spoons, spoon dollops of filling in a ring around the tube pan. (Part the dough a little with spoons as you drop filling.) Make no additional effort to cover filling with the batter.

Bake for 65-70 minutes, or until top springs back when touched. Cool in pan, on a rack for 30 minutes. Turn out onto serving plate. Chill before serving. Top may be sprinkled with powdered sugar just before cutting.

FONTINA ZUPPA WITH MUSHROOMS AND BACON

10-12 thick slices of bacon

2 large shallots, sliced

2 Tablespoons minced fresh parsley

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

4 garlic cloves, sliced

12 ounces fresh mushrooms, thickly sliced

4 Tablespoons flour

1 cup dry vermouth (may substitute chicken broth)

2 cups milk

2 cans chicken broth

1 cup orzo pasta (about 6 ounces)

8 ounces cubed fontina cheese

1 cup dairy sour cream

1 1/2 cups water

Pepper to taste

Salt if needed

Makes about 10 cups.

Cut bacon up into 1/2 inch wide pieces. Fry in skillet until crisp. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon. Leave 4 Tablespoons bacon grease in skillet. Set remainder aside.

Add shallots, parsley, oregano, basil and garlic to skillet. Sauté until shallot is limp. Add mushrooms, stir and cover. Cook over low heat for 5 minutes.

Remove lid and sprinkle with 2 Tablespoons flour. Stir through, then add the vermouth and milk. let simmer for 5 minutes.

To a stockpot add the chicken broth. Bring to a boil, then stir in the orzo. Let simmer about 6 minutes. Check to see if cooked. Add contents of skillet and the fontina. Stir until melted. Add 1 1/2 cups additional water and the sour cream. Check for salt and add pepper to taste.

Nice addition: Sprinkle a few slivered chives and sliced almonds on each bowl as you serve it.

Time Management: The soup may be prepared up to the cooking of the orzo a day or two ahead and refrigerated. Complete up to adding the cheese and sour cream the morning before serving if desired. It is best if the cheese is added shortly before serving and the sour cream is added just before the end.

GOLDEN BELL PEPPER JELLY

Makes 8 half pints

11/2 cups seeded and finely minced golden bell peppers (see note)

1/2 cup finely minced hot red peppers (if you prefer a very hot pepper jelly,

include the seeds, that's where the heat is; see note)

6 1/2 cups granulated sugar

1 1/2 cups vinegar

6 ounces liquid pectin (2 pouches)

Wash 8 half-pint jars. Keep hot until needed. Prepare lids as manufacturer directs.

Combine bell and hot peppers, sugar and vinegar in a large pan (see note). Bring mixture to a brisk boil and boil for 3 minutes. Add the pectin and boil hard 1 minute longer.

Remove from heat, skim off foam and ladle into 1 hot jar at a time, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Wipe jar rim with a clean, damp cloth. Attach lid. Fill and close remaining jars. Process in a boiling-water canner for 10 minutes (15 minutes at 1,000 to 6,000 feet; 20 minutes above 6,000 feet).

Note: If golden peppers are unavailable, red or green bell peppers may be substituted.

Note: Wear gloves when handling fresh, canned, dried or pickled chilies; the oils can cause a burning sensation on your skin.

Note: Do not use aluminum or iron cookware for this recipe. The acids in the ingredients could react with the metal, giving the food an off taste. -- Adapted from "Keeping the Harvest" by Nancy Chioffi and Gretchen Mead

 

GREEK SCRAMBLE

A bright green quartet of fresh herbs (mint, scallions, parsley, and oregano) teams up with freshly cooked spinach to infuse scrambled eggs with Mediterranean soul. Laced throughout with crumbled feta--which is as much a seasoning as it is a cheese--this dish needs no salt. Just grind in a generous amount of black pepper and you're good to go.

Serve this dish with thin slices of freshly toasted sourdough walnut bread. A mini-food processor makes short work of mincing the herbs. If you can't find fresh oregano, substitute 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano. YIELD: 4 servings

6 to 8 large eggs

3 tablespoons minced fresh mint

1 tablespoon minced flat-leaf parsley

1 teaspoon minced fresh oregano

2 tablespoons minced scallion

Freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 cups (packed) spinach

1 cup crumbled feta

1 cup diced ripe tomatoes or halved cherry tomatoes

Break the eggs into a medium-sized bowl and beat with a whisk until smooth. Stir in the herbs and scallion and grind in a good amount of black pepper.

Place a 10-inch skillet or sauté pan over medium heat. After several minutes, add the olive oil, wait about 10 seconds, then swirl to coat the pan. Turn the heat up to medium-high, add the spinach and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the spinach has wilted and turned a deep green.

With the heat still at medium-high, pour the eggs into the pan, scrambling them slowly As the eggs begin to set, push the curds from the bottom to one side, allowing uncooked egg to flow into contact with the pan. The spinach will blend into the eggs.

When the eggs are mostly set but still slightly wet, sprinkle in the crumbled feta. Continue scrambling slowly, allowing the cheese to melt slightly into the eggs. After about a minute, stir in the tomatoes.

Cook for just a few seconds longer, or until the eggs are done to your liking. Serve right away.

 

 

 

GRILLED TENDERLOIN WRAPPED IN PANCETTA

Makes 6 servings

Pancetta, a salt-cured Italian bacon, adds rich flavor and, if crisped over direct heat at the end, creates a compelling contrast to the tenderloin.

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 pork tenderloins, about 1 pound each

1/4 pound thinly sliced pancetta

In a small bowl, make a rub by combining garlic, rosemary, kosher salt and black pepper. Trim any excess fat and silver skin from the tenderloins and spread the rub evenly all over, pressing the spices into the meat. Cut six 12-inch pieces of cotton string, three for each tenderloin. Wrap the tenderloin with the slices of pancetta and secure the pancetta with the string. (The tenderloins do not need to be completely covered.) Allow to stand at room temperature for 20 to 30 minutes before grilling.

Grill the tenderloins over indirect medium heat until the centers are barely pink and the internal temperature measures 155 degrees, 25 to 30 minutes, turning once halfway through grilling time. Move the tenderloins over direct medium heat for the last 3 minutes if you want to crisp the pancetta. Allow the tenderloins to rest for 3 to 5 minutes, then snip the strings with scissors and remove them. Cut the tenderloins in thin slices on the bias and serve warm. -- From Weber Stephens Co., Caprial & John's Kitchen

GUACAMOLE FOR ONE

1 small ripe avocado, peeled and pitted

1 small tomato, seeded and finely chopped

1 small garlic clove, crushed

1 Tbsp (15 ml) finely chopped onion

1 tsp (5 ml) lemon or lime juice

Hot sauce to taste

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Mash the avocado with a fork in a small bowl. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Serve with tortilla chips. Serves 1. Bon appetit from the Chef at World Wide Recipes

 

 

HOMEMADE CHEESE WHIZ

1 1/2 pounds American Cheese -- (like Velveeta)

13 ounces Evaporated Milk

1 tablespoon Butter or Margarine

2 Egg yolks -- beaten

1 tablespoon Flour

Cube cheese, and set aside. In a double boiler, melt butter and add cheese.

When softened, add egg yolks, milk and flour, and stir with a wire whisk to

blend well. Cook till thick. Store in a covered air tight container in the

refrigerator for up to 30 days.

*This may be used in any recipe calling for jar cheese, such as Cheese Whiz

or alone as a dip.

**Serving Suggestion: Heat 1 cup Homemade Cheese Whiz, 1 can refried beans

and 1/2 cup salsa together to make a hearty dip for Tortilla Chips. (add

jalapeno peppers if desired).

KRAUT CAKE I

2 1/4 cups sifted flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup cocoa

2/3 cup butter

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 large eggs

1 cups water

2/3 cup rinsed, drained and chopped sauerkraut

frosting:

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

3 Tbsp sugar

1 teaspoon cocoa

Sift together flour, baking powder, soda, salt and cocoa. Cream butter, sugar and vanilla thoroughly. Beat in eggs one at a time, stir in flour mixture in several additions, alternately with water until smooth each time. Stir in kraut. Turn into 2 greased and floured 9 inch round cake pans. Bake in preheated oven 350 degrees until a cake tester come out clean about 30 minutes. Cool on wire rack for 10 minutes. Turn out on racks and cool completely.

frosting: Whip cream with sugar and then add cocoa, beat until stiff peaks

form. Sandwich cakes together and frost top and sides. The kraut tastes like

coconut.

KRAUT CAKE II

2/3 cup butter or margarine, softened

1-1/2 cups sugar

3 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa

2-1/4 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup water

2/3 cup rinsed, drained and chopped sauerkraut

Cream butter with sugar well. Beat eggs and vanilla. Sift together dry

ingredients. Add alternately with water to egg mixture. Stir in kraut.

Bake in two greased and floured 8" cake pans (or one 9x13) at 350 degrees

for 30 minutes or until cake tests done. Frost with mocha frosting.

Mocha frosting

1-1/2 c whipping cream, whipped

Whip in the following:

3 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon instant coffee

2 teaspoons cocoa

2 tablespoons rum (optional)

Spread on cooled cake

You can use one small carton (1 cup) of whipping cream, whipped and then substitute 2 cups of Cool Whip folded in after the flavorings have been added.

KRAUT CAKE III

(makes two layers)

2 1/4 cups flour

1/2 cup cocoa

1 tsp. baking soda

1/4 tsp. salt

Combine the above.

2/3 cup soft butter

1 1/2 cups sugar

3 eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

1 cup water (or coffee)

2/3 cup sauerkraut (drained and chopped)

Cream butter, add sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Add liquid and dry ingredients

alternately, beginning and ending with dry. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30min.

or until done.

Butter Cream Filling

1/2 cup butter softened

3 1/2 cups icing sugar (or less...about 2 1/2 cups)

1/8 tsp. salt

1 egg yolk

2-3 oz. bitter chocolate melted in 2 Tbsp water

Cream butter until fluffy. Beat in sugar, salt and egg yolk until thick and

creamy. Add milk if needed for consistency. Add melted chocolate. Makes

about 2 1/2 cups

Putting It All Together

2 chocolate layer cakes

1/4 c. kirsch or to taste (optional)

1 recipe chocolate butter cream

2 c. pitted halved black cherries, canned or fresh

2 c. heavy cream

1 tsp. sugar, 3/4 c. grated semi-sweet chocolate

Slice off crown of cakes to level layers and sprinkle each layer with 1 tsp.

kirsch. Spread top of bottom layer with chocolate butter cream. Place 1 1/2

cups cherries on butter cream and press lightly into cream. Top with second

layer. Whip cream, sweetening it with sugar and adding remaining kirsch to

taste. Spread whipped cream over top and around sides of cake. Decorate with

chocolate curls or grated chocolate and remaining cherries. Chill for several hours before serving.

KRAUT CAKE IV

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 tsp. baking powder

2 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar

4 large eggs

1 cup vegetable oil

16 ounces Strub's Wine Sauerkraut, rinsed well and squeezed thoroughly dry

1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, coarsely grated and squeezed very dry

1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans

Cream Cheese Frosting

1 package (16 ounces) cream cheese, softened

1 cup confectioners' sugar

3-1/2 Tbsp. heavy cream

2 Tbsp. grated orange rind

1 tsp. cinnamon

2 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350º F. Line bottoms of two 8-inch round cake pans with

waxed paper. Grease and flour pans. Combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon,

baking soda, salt and nutmeg in medium-size bowl; set aside. Mix sugars

together in large bowl, breaking up any lumps. Whisk in eggs, then oil,

until blended.

Stir in sauerkraut, apple and nuts. Add flour mixture and stir just until

moistened. Spoon cake mix into prepared cake pans. Bake about 35 minutes,

or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean and cake begins to

pull away from sides of pan. Let cool 10 minutes, then invert cakes onto

wire racks to cool completely. Spread Cream Cheese Frosting on top of one

cake. Top with second cake and frost top and sides.

Cream Cheese Frosting

Whip cream cheese, slowly adding sugar, until fluffy. Add heavy cream,

orange rind, cinnamon and vanilla. Mix well. Makes about 2-1/4 cups.

MACADAMIA-CRUSTED MAHI-MAHI

WITH COCONUT CREAM

Makes 2 servings

2 mahi-mahi fillets (6 ounces each)

Salt and pepper

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Crust mixture:

1/4 cup finely chopped macadamia nuts

2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds (see note)

1/4 cup panko bread crumbs

1 egg, beaten

1 tablespoon olive oil 3 tablespoons butter

Coconut cream spinach sauce:

2 tablespoons butter

1/2 medium onion, minced, or 1/2 cup chopped green onions

2 cups fresh chopped spinach

1/2 cup whipping cream

1 cup canned coconut milk

1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon cold water, if needed

Salt and pepper

Season fish with salt and pepper, dust with flour.

To make crust mixture: Combine macadamia nuts, sesame seeds and panko crumbs.

Dip one side of floured fish into egg; let excess drain off. Dip into crust mixture and firmly press onto fish. In a heavy-bottomed frying pan, heat olive oil and 3 tablespoons butter until very hot. Add fish crust side down and fry until golden brown, about 11/2 minutes. Turn and cook other side for about 11/2 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside keeping warm, but without further cooking.

To make sauce: In the same pan, melt 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat; add onions and cook until translucent. Add spinach and cook until limp. Remove onion and spinach to strainer. Add cream to pan juices and reduce, 3 to 4 minutes. Add coconut milk and reduce further 3 to 4 minutes. Add cornstarch mixture if sauce is too thin, simmer for about 2 minutes, stirring until thickened. Adjust salt and pepper. Serve crust side up. Place fish on top of spinach with sauce around the edges.

Note: To toast sesame seeds, place in a dry skillet over medium heat. Toast until seeds turn light brown, shaking the pan to keep the seeds from scorching.

MAHOGANY CHICKEN DRUMETTES

WITH VEGETABLE CONFETTI

Makes 5 servings

1 cup hoisin sauce

3/4 cup plum sauce

1/2 cup reduced-sodium soy sauce

1/3 cup cider vinegar

1/4 cup dry sherry

1/4 cup honey

1 bunch green onions, minced

6 cloves garlic, minced

4 pounds chicken wings, cut off wing tip sections

1/4 cup vegetable confetti (tiny diced red,yellow and green bell pepper and red

onion), for garnish

2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds (see note)

Combine hoisin sauce, plum sauce, soy sauce, cider vinegar, dry sherry, honey, green onions and garlic. Toss wings with marinade and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours.

Drain wings, place on roasting rack on sheet pan and bake for 30 minutes at 375 degrees or bake in sauce at 450 degrees. Baste and turn wings; continue roasting for 30 minutes. Sprinkle with mixed vegetable confetti and sesame seeds.

Note: To toast sesame seeds, place in a dry skillet over medium heat. Toast until seeds turn light brown, shaking the pan to keep the seeds from scorching. -- From chef Jon Wirtis, Western Culinary Institute

PASTA WITH RAPID RATATOUILLE SAUCE

by Sam Gugino

WINE RECOMMENDATION: The mélange of vegetable flavors in the Pasta with Rapid Ratatouille Sauce and the touches of basil and garlic call for a medium-bodied red wine with a little spice of its own, like Chianti, or a Sangiovese (the grape variety native to the Chianti region of Italy and now also grown in the U.S.). White wine lovers will find a crisp Sauvignon Blanc a fine match for these flavors.

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium onion, about 8 ounces

3 cloves garlic

1 green bell pepper

10 to 12 ounces eggplant (about 2 Japanese or baby eggplants)

2 small to medium zucchini, 10 to 12 ounces

Two 14.5-ounce cans diced tomatoes

2 teaspoons salt plus more to taste

12 ounces dried capellini (angel hair) or any fresh unstuffed pasta

20 large basil leaves

1/2 cup pitted black oil-cured olives

Freshly ground black pepper

Red pepper flakes to taste

Grated Parmesan passed at the table

1) Run the hot-water tap and put 2 quarts hot tap water in each of 2 pots (one large enough to eventually hold all the water and pasta). Cover and bring both pots to a boil over high heat, 8 to 10 minutes.

2) Meanwhile, put a 12-inch sauté pan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Peel the garlic. Drop the garlic down the chute of a food processor with the motor running to finely chop. Stop the motor, then peel and quarter the onion. Add the onion to the food processor. Pulse just until chopped. (Or chop by hand.) Add the oil to the sauté pan and increase the heat to high. Add the garlic and onion and stir.

3) Cut the eggplant into 1/2-inch cubes. (Do not peel.) Add to the sauté pan and stir. Cut the top from the bell pepper. Stand it upright and cut down inside the four walls, separating the walls from the center core and seeds. Then cut the walls and top into thin strips. Add to the sauté pan and stir. Trim the ends of the zucchini. Cut into quarters, lengthwise, then crosswise into 1/2-inch wide pieces. Add to the sauté pan and stir. Open the cans of tomatoes and add to the sauté pan. Stir and cover.

4) As soon as the pasta water boils, pour the water from the smaller pot into the larger pot. Add 2 teaspoons salt and the pasta. Stir well, cover, and return to a boil. Stir well again, partially cover, and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring at least one more time, or until the pasta is done to your taste.

5) While the pasta cooks, stack the basil leaves, roll in cigar fashion, and cut crosswise into thin ribbons. Coarsely chop the olives. Add all but 2 tablespoons of the basil, the olives, and salt, black pepper, and hot pepper flakes to taste to the sauté pan. Lower the heat to medium, stir well and cook, uncovered, until the pasta is done.

6) When the pasta is cooked, drain, and divide among 4 individual soup plates or pasta bowls. Spoon the ratatouille sauce over each and sprinkle with the remaining chopped basil. Serve with grated Parmesan at the table. Serves 4

PEACH MELBA COBBLER

20 ounces peeled, sliced peaches, fresh or frozen, unsweetened

10 ounces raspberries, fresh or frozen, unsweetened--- divided use*

1 cup white sugar

1/4 cup all purpose flour

3 Tablespoons butter

1 Tablespoon minced candied ginger

*Reserve enough berries to have one to garnish each serving.

Combine sugar and fruit and let mixture stand for 30 minutes, until fruit begins to exude juices. Drain and combine the juices, sugar, flour, butter and ginger. Stir in the fruit and pour into a 7"x11" glass baking dish.

Preheat oven to 425ºF.

When oven is hot, gently stir the mixture in baking dish and place in oven. Mixture needs to be bubbling when topping is put on.

Prepare topping immediately. (If you are delayed, remove dish from oven so fruit will not caramelize.)

Topping

1 cup all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

1/3 cup boiling water

Place dry ingredients in mixing bowl and stir well. Cut the butter into the dry ingredients with a pastry blender.

Pour the hot water over the flour mixture, all at once, and stir vigorously until all flour is dampened.

Remove bubbling fruit mixture from oven and drop batter by spoonfuls onto the top. It is important that the fruit mixture be hot when you put on the topping, so it will not get soggy. Sprinkle top with sugar. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly browned.

Best served slightly warm. To garnish, top with a dollop of whipped cream, a reserved berry and a mint leaf, or a piece of candied ginger.

PEANUT BUTTER PICNIC CAKE

1/2 cups margarine

1 1/3 cups sugar

1/4 cup peanut butter

2 eggs

1 tsp. vanilla

2 cups flour

1 Tbs. baking powder

1 tsp. salt

1 cup milk

1 10-oz jar Strawberry Preserves or Grape Jelly

Peanut Butter Frosting (I've put recipe on bottom)

Cream margarine and sugar until light and fluffy. Blend in peanut butter,

eggs and vanilla. Add combined dry ingredients alternately with milk, mixing

well after each addition. Pour into two greased and floured 8 or 9 inch

layer pans. Bake at 350, 35-40 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in

center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes remove from pans. Spread 2/3 cup

preserves between layers. Frost with Peanut Butter Frosting. Decorate with

additional preserves.

Peanut Butter Frosting

1/4 cup margarine

1/4 cup peanut butter

1 tsp. vanilla

dash of salt

2 1/2 cups sifted confectioners sugar

3 tbs. milk

Cream margarine; blend in peanut butter, vanilla and salt. Add sugar

alternately with milk, beating until light and fluffy.

PEAR DAIQUIRI

Makes 2 servings

1 medium, ripe Asian pear

2 ice cubes

3 ounces light rum (6 tablespoons)

3 ounces pear eau de vie (6 tablespoons)

2 teaspoons lemon juice

Cut 2 thin wedges from pear and set aside for garnish. Peel, core and chop rest of pear and puree in blender or food processor. You should have about 1/2 cup pear puree.

In a shaker, combine 2 ice cubes, pear puree, rum, eau de vie and lemon juice. Shake well. Strain into 2 margarita or martini glasses. Garnish each with pear wedge.

PORK CHOPS IN GRAPE SAUCE

2 boneless pork chops -- 1-inch thick

Olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 cup red or green seedless grapes

1 tablespoon butter

Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Brush each chop lightly with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Brown chops on each side; remove chops from pan.

Add balsamic vinegar to skillet, scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Add grapes, tossing to coat with vinegar. Return chops to skillet, spooning juices over chops. Cover tightly; cook over low heat for 7-8 minutes, until chops are just done.

With a slotted spoon, transfer the chops and grapes to a serving platter; keep warm. Stir the butter into the sauce until melted. Cook, uncovered, over medium-high heat until the sauce thickens slightly. Spoon the sauce over the chops and grapes. Yield: 2 servings.

PORK CORDON BLEU

2 thick cut butterfly cut pork loin

1 slice ham

1 slice Swiss cheese

1/2 cup flour

2 eggs and a little water

1/2 to 1 cup bread crumbs

salt and pepper to taste

1 cup cooking oil

Trim fat from pork and place between plastic wrap. Pound with meat hammer till it is thin. Place ham and Swiss cheese on one side, leaving enough space around edge to seal pocket. Fold over and seal edges with hammer. Mix flour and salt and pepper in a plate. Beat eggs and water (about 2 tablespoons) in another plate. Place bread crumbs on another plate. Be sure to do this in this order. roll pork in flour to make the egg stick, then in the egg mixture to make the bread crumbs stick. Then in the bread crumbs being sure all the meat is covered. Heat oil in frying pan on medium heat. place cordon bleu in pan and cook about 5 minutes on each side. Serve with Spaetzel, French fries or German Potato salad.

PUMPKIN MUFFINS

You don't need to wait for autumn to celebrate the spirit of the harvest. Create your own holiday season any time of year with these golden muffins. For a touch of texture and to give more of an intriguing bitter edge to the muffins, coarsely chop the orange, rather than grating it. The easiest way to do this is to shave off the outermost peel with a vegetable peeler and then to chop the shavings into smaller pieces with a sharp knife. The range of sugar allows you to make these sweeter or not, according to your taste. Cooked sweet potato or winter squash can be substituted for the pumpkin.. Canola oil can be substituted for some or all of the butter. YIELD: 8 to 10 muffins

 

Nonstick spray

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt (rounded measure)

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon allspice

3 to 4 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 tablespoon chopped orange zest

1/3 cup (packed) dark brown sugar

1 cup mashed pumpkin

1 large egg

1/2 cup milk

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Lightly spray 8 standard (2 1/2-inch-diameter) muffin cups with nonstick spray.

Combine the flour, salt, baking powder, spices, granulated sugar and orange zest in a medium-sized bowl. Crumble in the brown sugar and mix with a fork or your fingers, until thoroughly blended.

Measure the pumpkin into a second medium-sized bowl. Add the egg, milk and vanilla and beat with a fork or a whisk until smooth.

Slowly pour this mixture, along with the melted butter, into the dry ingredients. Using a spoon or a rubber spatula, stir from the bottom of the bowl until the dry ingredients are all moistened. Don't over-mix; a few lumps are okay.

Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups. For smaller muffins, fill the cups about four-fifths full. For larger muffins, fill them up to the top. If you have extra batter, spray one or two additional muffin cups with non-stick spray and fill with the remaining batter.

Bake in the middle of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until lightly browned on top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove the pan from the oven, then remove the muffins from the pan and place them on a rack to cool. Wait at least 30 minutes before serving.

QUICK CURRIED PUMPKIN SOUP

2 Tablespoons butter

1 small onion, minced

4 teaspoons curry powder

1/4 cup pecans, finely chopped

1 can chicken or vegetable broth

1/3 cup instant dried potato flakes

15 ounce can solid pack pumpkin

1 1/2 cups cider or apple juice

2 Tablespoons brown sugar

3/4 teaspoon salt

few grinds pepper

2 cups half and half

Note: if desired, oil may be substituted for the butter and milk for the half and half.

Melt butter in bottom of 3-4 quart saucepot. Sauté onion for 2-3 minutes, until beginning to soften. Add curry powder and pecans and continue to cook for another 2 minutes, adding broth as needed to keep mixture from sticking. Add remaining broth, instant potatoes and pumpkin. Whisk together well. Add apple juice, sugar, salt, pepper and half and half. Whisk again to make a smooth mixture. Heat to a gentle simmer and cook for about 4 minutes, being careful that mixture doesn't scorch. Taste for salt and add more if needed. Cover, turn heat down and allow to set for 10 minutes, or until almost ready to serve. Just before serving, turn heat back up and bring back to a gentle simmer. Serve hot.

May be garnished with curry flavored whipped cream.

Variations:

1. You may start with 1/2 cup of cooked and mashed potatoes if you do not wish to use the instant variety.

2. You may substitute 1 pound frozen winter squash, thawed, for the pumpkin or you may use fresh pumpkin. To use fresh pumpkin, cut a 1 1/2# chunk of fresh pumpkin and lay in microwave-safe flat dish. Cover with plastic wrap. Cook for 10 minutes on high. Let cool, then remove from the outer shell. Mash this up and use instead of the can of pumpkin.

Time Management: The soup may be prepared the day before serving. Refrigerate until shortly before reheating. Soup will thicken as it cools. Wait until you have gently reheated it before deciding if you need to thin. If still too thick, thin by adding a little milk.

QUICK MIXED GRAIN PAN ROLLS

1 package yeast (1 Tablespoon)

1/2 cup warm water

2 Tablespoons sugar

1 cup whole wheat flour (4 1/2 ounces)

1/2 cup rolled oats

3 cups white bread flour (13 1/2 ounces)

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

4 Tablespoons butter

Liquid 2 eggs plus enough milk to make 1 cup total

Egg wash: 1 egg white beaten with 1 teaspoon water.

Combine water, sugar and yeast in small dish. Let stand to proof.

Processor Method:

Put dough blade in workbowl. Add flours, oats and salt. Pulse to combine. Cut butter into 4 pieces. Add to workbowl and pulse several times to cut into dry ingredients. Turn machine on and pour in the proofed yeast and then the egg/milk mixture in a slow, steady stream. After mixture forms a ball, let it revolve around workbowl for about 60 times. Remove dough and place in zip-type bag and set in warm place until doubled (about 30 minutes).

Hand Method:

Put milk/egg mixture in large mixing bowl. Whisk together. Stir in the yeast mixture. Combine flours, oats and salt. Add 1/2 to mixing bowl and beat well for 1 minute. Add remaining dry ingredients and stir together. Empty out onto lightly floured board and knead for about 8 minutes. Place dough in zip-type bag and set in warm place until doubled (about 30 minutes).

To Complete (both methods):

Prepare pans: Spray 2-9" round pans or 2-8" square pans with non-stick pan spray. Spray the area where you will be working with the dough with the pan spray as well. Divide dough into 2 equal pieces. Cover the one piece to keep from drying out. Divide the piece you are working with into 16 fairly even balls. Arrange balls in one of the pans. Repeat with remaining dough. Drape pans with sprayed plastic wrap and set in warm place to rise until doubled (about 20 minutes). Preheat oven to 375ºF. while roll dough is rising. When dough has doubled, brush with egg wash and sprinkle with poppy, caraway or sesame seeds or a combination of all three. If desired you may also sprinkle lightly with coarse salt.

Bake rolls for 20-25 minutes, until tops are browning and internal temperature of one roll is 190ºF.

RIB CHOP MOLÉ

4 pork rib chops -- 3/4-inch thick

2 tablespoons catsup

1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon water

1 chili pepper (garnish)

Cherry tomato roses (garnish)

Stir together catsup, cocoa, garlic salt, cinnamon and cayenne pepper. Stir in water until smooth. Place chops on broiler rack, brush lightly with mixture. Broil 4-5 inches from heat for 4 minutes. Turn over and brush again. Broil about 4-6 minutes more or to desired doneness, slightly pink inside. Garnish with peppers or tomato roses. Yield: 4 servings.

To Grill: Prepare medium-hot coals. Grill chops directly over coals for 4 minutes. Brush lightly with sauce. Turn chops over; brush other side lightly with mixture. Grill for 5-7 minutes more or to desired doneness. Serve as above.

ROAST CHICKEN WITH HERBS AND BUTTER

Makes 4 servings

4 chicken breast halves or 8 thighs or drumsticks, or any combo with skin on

8 pats of butter, for a total of 2 to 3 tablespoons

4 teaspoons fresh rosemary leaves or 2 teaspoons fresh tarragon leaves or 2

tablespoons snipped fresh dill or chervil, or to taste

Salt and pepper

1 lemon, cut into quarters

Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Loosen skin of chicken and insert a pat or two of butter, depending on size of chicken pieces, and a portion of herbs under skin. Sprinkle skin with salt and pepper and place pieces, skin side up, in a roasting pan just large enough to accommodate chicken.

Roast, turning pan from front to back once after 15 minutes. Do not turn pieces over. Chicken is usually done when nicely browned, 10 to 15 minutes later (about 30 minutes total). To be sure, cut into a piece or two to make sure juices are running clear, or use an instant-read thermometer to make sure breast meat has reached an internal temperature of 180 degrees. Serve hot or warm, with lemon wedges.

ROASTED MEDITERRANEAN VEGETABLE SOUP

1 medium eggplant, peeled

1 Tablespoon salt

Cut eggplant in half crosswise. Slice into 1" slices. Place in colander and sprinkle with salt. Toss. Allow to stand over a bowl, or in the sink for 30 minutes. Pat pieces dry-do not rinse.

1 red bell pepper,

1 small zucchini

1 small yellow summer squash

1/2 medium red onion, peeled

3 garlic cloves, peeled

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

2 Tablespoons olive oil

Preheat oven to 425ºF.

Cut pepper into about 8 pieces, both squash into 1/2" slices and the red onion in 3 pieces. Place all the vegetables, including the eggplant into a large flat pan. Toss with seasonings and oil. Do not cover. Roast for 25 minutes, stirring twice.

1 1/2 pounds tomatoes, peeled and seeded*

1/4 cup onion, chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

1 Tablespoon olive oil

1/2 cup dry red zinfandel

2 Tablespoons chopped parsley

1 Tablespoon minced basil (1/2 teaspoon dried)

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 Tablespoon Balsamic vinegar

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Sauté the onion and garlic in oil until transparent. Do not brown. Add Zinfandel to stop cooking. Add remaining ingredients and cook quickly to evaporate liquid. Stir continuously to prevent scorching-remove pan from heat immediately if you see any problem.

Combine both mixtures in large stockpot. Simmer briefly if vegetables do not seem fully cooked and soft. (They should be already.)

Purée with hand blender or transfer solids to food processor or blender in batches to purée.

Chicken broth

Heavy cream

Measure puréed mixture. Add 1 can chicken broth to each 1 cup of puréed vegetables. Heat to a good bubble and then simmer for 5 minutes. Add 1 Tablespoon heavy cream to each can chicken broth added. Reheat until hot, but do not boil.

*If fresh tomatoes are just not nice, use canned, diced tomatoes, drained. You will need 1# after draining-don't squeeze liquid out, just empty can into a sieve and discard the liquid that goes through.

Time Management: Soup may be completed the day before serving, except do not add the cream until you have reheated it.

ROSEMARY FOCACCIA SPECIALE

Dough

1/2 package active dry yeast (1 1/2 teaspoons)

1/3 cup warm water (110º to 115ºF)

1 Tablespoon sugar

3 cups all-purpose flour (15 ounces)

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon salt

1 large egg

1/3 cup sour cream

1/3-1/2 cup cold water

Combine yeast with warm water and sugar. Let stand until foamy.

Food Processor Method: Fit work-bowl with metal blade. Add flour, salt and oil to bowl. Pulse 2-3 times. Combine egg and sour cream in glass measure. Add cold water to 2/3 cup level. Remove small feed tube from lid. Turn machine on and pour in yeast in a steady stream, followed by the egg/water/sour cream mixture. Pour slowly so the flour will incorporate it. Add additional water by tablespoons if needed. (Dough should form a ball, and the additional water should not cause the ball to spread out and stick to the work-bowl.) Run machine 30 seconds after ball forms and all the water you have added is incorporated.

Hand or Mixer Directions: Choose a strong spoon if hand mixing, or fit mixer with dough hook. Combine egg and sour cream in glass measure. Add warm water to 2/3 cup level. Add to mixing bowl. Add half of the flour and salt. Beat hard for 1 minute. Add yeast and beat for 1 more minute. Add remaining flour and beat well for 2 minutes. Turn out onto floured board and knead for 8 minutes.

To Complete-Both Methods: Cover dough and let stand 30 minutes to rise in warm place.

Pour 1/3 cup Rosemary Flavored Olive Oil into a 10"x15" jellyroll type pan with 1" sides.

12-15 oil cured olives

Coarse Salt

Fresh Ground Pepper

Italian Herbs

4-5 sun-dried tomato halves

2-3 garlic cloves

Spray counter with non-stick pan spray and pat dough out to 12"X18" size. Sides may be irregular. Lay in pan with oil. Turn dough over. Push out to cover pan. Make indentations over surface. Sprinkle with coarse salt. Grind fresh pepper over and sprinkle with Italian Herbs. Seed and sliver 12-15 oil cured olives and scatter around the top. Rehydrate 4-5 sun dried tomato halves, cut up and scatter around on dough. Peel and sliver 2-3 garlic cloves and scatter over dough (or use roasted garlic pulp). With the flat of your hand, push down on these items you have added to push them into the dough well. Cover pan with plastic wrap and let stand in warm place 45-60 minutes.

Preheat oven to 425ºF. before dough has fully risen. When hot and dough is ready, bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and cool briefly. Cut into squares and serve warm.

Additional Rosemary oil or plain extra virgin olive oil can be made available for dipping if desired.

SCAMPI AND BASMATI RICE

by Sam Gugino

WINE RECOMMENDATION: Chardonnay is always a winning combination with Shrimp Scampi, and the dry, ripe fruit flavors of Chardonnay will serve well both as an ingredient and accompaniment to this dish.

1 cup basmati rice

1 teaspoon salt plus more to taste

1 pound large shrimp, in or out of the shell

3 tablespoons olive oil

3 large cloves garlic

Freshly ground black pepper

1/2 lemon

1/4 cup dry white wine

4 sprigs parsley, preferably flat leaf variety

1 tablespoon butter

1) While the hot-water tap runs, put the rice in a 2-quart saucepan. Add 2 cups hot tap water and 1 teaspoon salt. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low and cook for 10 minutes. Turn the heat off and keep covered until ready to serve. (Or put the rice, 2 cups hot water, and 1 teaspoon salt in a 2-quart microwave-safe container. Cover and put in a microwave oven on high power for 10 minutes. Keep covered until ready to serve.)

2) Meanwhile, if using shrimp in the shell, peel the shrimp but leave the tails on. Put the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-low heat. Peel and chop the garlic. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.

3) Add the shrimp to the skillet, increase the heat to medium, and cook for 2 minutes on one side. While the shrimp cook, season them with salt and pepper to taste. Juice the lemon half. Turn the shrimp over and cook for 1 minute. Then add the lemon juice and wine to the skillet. Raise the heat to high and cook for 2 minutes, stirring to mix well. Chop the leaves of the parsley and cut the butter into 4 pieces.

4) Add the parsley and the butter to the skillet. Stir just until the butter is melted and incorporated, giving the sauce a creamy texture. Remove from the heat and serve with the rice. Serves 4

SOPA DE TORTILLA

Garnish:

10 corn tortillas

Stack 5 tortillas and cut into 1/8" to 1/4" strips. Heat 3 cups of vegetable oil in a deep pan to 375°F. Fry tortilla strips a few at a time for about 35-45 seconds, until crisp. Do not let them brown. Remove from oil with slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Cut remaining tortillas in 1" squares. Reserve.

Avocado Relish:

2 ripe avocados

1 Tomatillo

1 clove garlic

8 pitted ripe olives

1/2-cup cilantro leaves

1/2 cup sour cream

Cut avocados in half and remove seeds. Scoop out flesh with tablespoon. Mince tomatillo, garlic olives and cilantro. Dice avocado and mix in. Stir in sour cream. Salt to taste. Reserve.

Soup:

3/4 pound Mexican chorizo

1 cup water

2 cans diced tomatoes with green chilies

1 envelope dry onion soup mix

3 cups liquid (see * below)

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2-cup cilantro leaves

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1 can pozolé (hominy)

Place skillet over medium heat. Squeeze sausage out of casing and fry for about 4 minutes, breaking up with a spatula. Pour in 1 cup water and bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute more. Drain meat through a sieve while hot. Reserve broth. Separate grease from broth by putting 2 wet paper towels in sieve and pouring the hot liquid through. (The grease will stay in sieve and broth will run through. Reserve degreased broth.*

Place a 3 quart or larger saucepan over medium heat. Add 3 cups liquid* consisting of reserved broth plus additional water, tomatoes, onion soup mix, cumin, cilantro, pozolé, Worcestershire sauce and chorizo. Bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes. Puree in blender, food processor or with hand blender. If using food processor, do not put over 3 cups at a time in workbowl.

To serve:

Put several of the tortilla squares in the bottom of each bowl and ladle soup over. Top with a few fried tortilla strips and then a spoonful of relish.

Time Management: Sausage can be cooked the day before, drained and refrigerated, or soup may be completed the day before. For added speed, omit tortilla strips and top with crisp tortilla chips, sliced avocado and sour cream instead of garnish.

(Note: Be sure to use Mexican Chorizo and not Spanish. The Spanish is a cooked, firm sausage, while the Mexican Chorizo is a fresh sausage. It can be found in links, or in bulk.

SOURDOUGH STRAWBERRY WAFFLES

Makes 8 large waffles

For overnight batter

1 1/2 cups slightly warm milk

3/4 cup sourdough starter

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup graham or whole-wheat flour

1 tablespoon honey

1 stick butter, melted

To replenish starter pot

1/2 to 1 cup sourdough starter

1 cup water

1 cup all-purpose flour

Topping

4 baskets strawberries, rinsed, patted dry, hulled and sliced (4 to 5 cups)

3 tablespoons sugar

1 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup whole-milk plain yogurt

To finish waffle batter

2 large eggs, beaten

1/2 teaspoon baking soda, dissolved in 1 tablespoon water

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

In a deep plastic container or a bowl with lid (large enough for the mixture to double overnight), combine milk, starter, flours, honey and melted butter. Beat with a whisk until smooth, cover and let stand overnight.

At the same time, replenish starter pot. Combine starter, water and flour; whisk until smooth. Return mixture to starter pot and loosely cover. Let stand overnight at room temperature. In the morning, refrigerate starter.

Preheat waffle iron to medium-high heat or according to manufacturer's instructions.

Slice berries and sprinkle with 1-2 tablespoons sugar. Whip cream with remaining tablespoon of sugar until it forms soft peaks. Add yogurt with a few strokes and refrigerate until serving.

To batter, add eggs, dissolved baking soda, baking powder and salt; whisk until smooth. Brush waffle iron grids with oil or melted butter. For each waffle, pour about 1 cup of batter onto grid. Close lid and bake until the waffle is crisp and well browned, 4-5 minutes. Remove from iron and serve immediately topped with lots of strawberries and some whipped cream.

Batter can be stored in refrigerator 1 to 2 days. Or freeze waffles up to 2 months in plastic freezer bags and heat (unthawed) in a toaster.

SOUTHWESTERN FLANK STEAK

with WARM POTATO and BLACK BEAN SALAD

by Sam Gugino

WINE RECOMMENDATION: Southwestern Flank Steak with Warm Potato and Black Bean Salad is full of spice and a perfect match for a classically rich and spicy red wine like Zinfandel. A peppery Syrah or Australian Shiraz will also pair well with these hearty flavors.

Two 8-ounce, red skinned potatoes

Salt

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon chili powder

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus additional

2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil

1 1/2 pounds flank steak

One 15-ounce can black beans

1 rib celery

Half of a sweet onion such as Vidalia, about 4 ounces

1 tablespoon sliced, pickled jalapeno peppers

2 limes

1/3 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves

1) Turn on the gas grill or broiler.

2) Cut the potatoes in quarters lengthwise (do not peel). Then cut crosswise into 1/4-inch wide pieces. Run the hot water tap while you put the potatoes in a saucepan with 1 teaspoon salt. Barely cover with hot tap water. Put over high heat, cover and cook 10 minutes or until barely tender, then drain well.

3) Meanwhile, combine the cumin, chili powder, cayenne, 1/8 teaspoon black pepper and salt to taste in a small bowl. Rub the steak with 1 teaspoon of the olive oil, then with the spice mixture. Grill the steak over high heat on the gas grill about 5 minutes on each side for medium-rare. Or put the steak 3 inches from the broiler heat source and cook for 5 to 6 minutes on each side. Remove to a cutting board. (If using a cast iron skillet, put the skillet over high heat until hot, then cook the steak about 5 minutes on each side.)

4) Meanwhile, open, rinse and drain the black beans in a colander. Cut the celery rib crosswise into thin crescents. Cut the onion into thin slices. Coarsely chop the cilantro. Put the celery, onion, cilantro, and black beans in a mixing bowl.

5) Mince the jalapeno. Juice the limes. Put the jalapeno, lime juice, the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste in a small bowl and mix well.

6) Add the drained potatoes to the black beans. Add the dressing. Toss well and check for salt and pepper. Slice the steak on the diagonal into 1/4-inch thick slices. Serve with the salad. Serves 4

SPIKE'S CHILI CON CARNE

1 pound ground beef

1 large onion, chopped (about 1 cup)

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves

1 teaspoon cocoa

1/2 teaspoon red pepper sauce

1 can (16 ounces) whole tomatoes, undrained

1 can (15 1/2 ounces) red kidney beans, undrained

2 tbsp masa

Cook and stir ground beef, onion and garlic in 3 quart saucepan until beef is brown, drain. Stir in remaining ingredients except beans, break up tomatoes. Heat to boiling, reduce heat, cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, 1 hour. Stir in beans, heat to boiling, reduce heat, simmer uncovered, stirring mixture occasionally, until desired consistency, about 20 minutes. Serves 4, serve with warm cornbread.

STOVE TOP TAMALE PIE

 

1 pound ground beef

1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce

1 can (14 ounces) kidney beans, undrained

1/2 cup water

1 package (1.25 ounces) McCormick(r) Taco Seasoning

1 package (8 ounces) corn muffin mix

1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

1/4 cup sliced green onion

1. In a large skillet, brown ground beef over medium-high heat. Drain.

2. Stir in tomato sauce, beans, water and Taco Seasoning Mix. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, cover and simmer 5 minutes.

3. Prepare corn muffin mix according to package directions. Drop small spoonfuls of muffin batter over meat mixture in a skillet. Cover and cook over medium-low heat 15-17 minutes or until corn bread is done.

4. Top with cheese and green onion. Cover and cook over low heat until cheese melts. Makes 6 (1 cup) servings

 

SWEET POTATO CASSEROLE

2 cans (40 ounces each) cut yams or sweet potatoes

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon

2 cups miniature marshmallows

1. In large saucepan, heat yams until thoroughly warmed. Drain slightly,

and mash yams until creamy. Stir in brown sugar and cinnamon.

2. Place yams in casserole dish. Top with marshmallows.

3. Bake in 325º oven for 20 minutes or until marshmallows are lightly browned. Yield: 10-12 servings.

TACO CHICKEN FINGERS

1/2 cup milk

1 package (1.25 ounces) McCormick(r) Taco Seasoning

1/4 cup flour

1/4 cup cornmeal

1 cup oil

2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in 1-inch strips

salsa (optional)

1. Place milk in small bowl. Set aside. In a shallow dish or plastic bag, blend taco seasoning, flour and cornmeal.

2. In a large skillet, heat oil to 350°F. Dip chicken pieces in milk and coat with flour mixture.

3. Add chicken fingers, a few pieces at a time, to hot oil. Fry 4-5 minutes or until done. Drain on paper towel. Serve with salsa as a dipping sauce.

TERIYAKI CHICKEN AND NOODLES

Serves 6

1 pound dried Asian noodles (such as soba or udon) or linguine, broken in half

2 tablespoons dark sesame oil

1/4 cup olive or vegetable oil

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut crosswise into thin strips

Salt and pepper

1 bunch green onions, sliced diagonally into 1-inch pieces

2 carrots, peeled and sliced very thinly on diagonal

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

3/4 cup low-sodium teriyaki sauce

Cook noodles in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender. Drain well; return to pot. Add sesame oil and toss to coat. Set noodles aside.

Heat vegetable oil in heavy large skillet over high heat. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Add chicken to skillet and sauté until no longer pink, about 3 minutes. Add green onions, carrots and red pepper flakes. Stir-fry until vegetables are crisp-tender but still bright in color and chicken is cooked through, about 2 minutes longer. Add noodles and teriyaki sauce, and toss to blend well. Serve immediately. -- From "Bon Appetit Every-Night Cooking"

TEXAS STYLE SLOPPY JOES

1 pound ground beef

1 package McCormick(r) Sloppy Joes Seasoning

1 can (14 1/2 ounces) pinto beans, rinsed and drained

1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce

1/4 cup ketchup

1 can (4 ounces) green chilies, chopped

8 hamburger rolls or flour tortillas

shredded cheese, optional

1. In a large skillet, brown ground beef. Drain fat.

2. Add Sloppy Joes Seasoning mix, pinto beans, tomato sauce, ketchup and chilies. Cover and simmer 10 minutes.

3. Serve over hamburger rolls or place 3 tablespoons mixture along center of 8 warmed flour tortillas; garnish with shredded cheese, if desired. Fold over edges of tortillas.

TUNA STEAKS WITH AVOCADO HASH

Makes 2 servings

Avocado hash:

1 medium, ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and finely diced

11/2 teaspoons lime juice

2 tablespoons minced fresh chives

1 tablespoon minced fresh basil

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Tuna steaks:

2 6- to 8-ounce tuna steaks, cut 3/4 to 1 inch thick

1/2 teaspoon coarsely crushed pepper

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons olive oil

2 lime wedges

To make hash: In bowl, combine avocado, lime juice, chives, basil, salt and pepper. Mix well. Makes about 1 cup.

To make tuna steaks: Place tuna on a plate and press 1/4 teaspoon pepper into each steak. Season each with 1/4 teaspoon salt and brush with 1 teaspoon oil.

Place tuna on broiler pan and broil 3 inches from heat, allowing 4 minutes per side. Remove from broiler. Place 1 steak on each of 2 plates. Either top with hash or serve on the side. Garnish plates with lime wedges.

TURKEY TACOS with RED PEPPER SALSA

by Sam Gugino

WINE RECOMMENDATION: The abundant fresh flavors of Turkey Tacos with Red Pepper Salsa call for a full-bodied and fruity dry white wine like Chardonnay to balance the spices. A chilled Beaujolais will also be a fine match if you prefer red wine.

1 tablespoon canola oil

11/2 to 2 pounds turkey cutlets or ground turkey breast meat

21/2 teaspoons ground cumin

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle or cayenne pepper

Salt

1/3 cup dry white wine or fat-free, reduced-sodium chicken stock

1 bunch watercress

One 7-ounce jar roasted red bell peppers

4 ounces sweet onion, such as Vidalia

1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves, well packed

1/2 lime

1 cup low-fat sour cream or low-fat plain yogurt

Twelve 6-inch flour tortillas

1) Put the canola oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cut the turkey into strips about 3/4-inch wide. Add to the pan and increase the heat to high. Season with the cumin, chipotle pepper, and salt to taste. Stir for 2 minutes, then add the wine. Cook, stirring periodically until almost all the liquid evaporates, about 3 minutes.

2) Meanwhile, cut 1/2-inch from bottom of the watercress bunches. Put the watercress bunches in the salad spinner and fill with water. Drain and spin dry. Wrap in paper towels to remove excess moisture. Put into a serving bowl or on a plate.

3) Drain the roasted peppers in a small colander. Meanwhile, peel and quarter the onion. Put the roasted peppers, onion, and cilantro leaves in a food processor. Pulse until coarsely chopped. Juice the lime half and add to the food processor with salt to taste. Pulse until well combined but still slightly chunky. Put into a serving bowl.

4) Spread the tortillas on a microwave-safe plate and cover with a paper towel. Cook in a microwave oven on high power for 20 seconds. Meanwhile, spoon the cooked turkey onto a platter. Put the sour cream in a small serving bowl. To assemble a taco, lay a tortilla flat and put a few sprigs of the watercress down the center. Then add 1 to 2 ounces of turkey, 1

tablespoon of sour cream, and 1 tablespoon of salsa. Do not overfill. Fold and eat. Serve 3 tacos per person. Serves 4

WILD RICE WITH CHERRIES AND HAZELNUTS

Wild rice has been a staple for the Ojibwa, Chippewa, and Algonquin people for thousands of years. Native Americans in the Great Lakes region still use wild rice in just about everything: cakes, breads, omelets, muffins, casseroles, pancakes and so on. The dark, robust grain (technically an aquatic grass) is complex, nutty, and pleasantly bitter -- and richer in protein, minerals, and B vitamins than wheat, barley, oats, or rye.

When shopping for wild rice, you might notice a light brown "wild rice mix" as well as the more familiar dark variety. This paddy-grown grain is not the same thing as authentic Native American wild rice. It is lighter in color and milder in flavor-and cooks in less time and with less water If you make this recipe with "wild rice mix," cook it as you would any long-grain brown rice. Dried cranberries can be substituted for the cherries. Hazelnuts are also known as filberts.

YIELD: 3 or 4 servings

 

1 cup wild rice

21/2 cups water

1/4 teaspoon salt

Brown sugar or pure maple syrup

1/2 cup dried cherries

1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts, lightly toasted

Milk, soy milk, or cream

Place the wild rice, water and salt in a medium-sized saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. When it reaches a boil, cover the pot and lower the heat to a bare simmer. Cook for 1 1/4 hours, or until all the water is absorbed and the rice is tender and has "butterflied," or burst open. (If the grain has become tender but there is still water left, drain it off.)

Remove from the heat, and stir in the sugar or maple syrup and the cherries.

Serve hot, topped with chopped hazelnuts and the milk of your choice.

Precious Wild Rice

Why is wild rice so expensive? Amazingly, about 20 percent of the world's crop is still hand-picked by Native Americans in canoes, who retain exclusive harvesting rights on the reservations along the shores of the Great Lakes. The crop is an important part of the tribes' economy.

After it is cut, the precious grain is sun-dried, then hulled through an agitation process in a steel drum. This labor of love has been virtually unchanged throughout the centuries and to this day, true heirloom wild rice grows solely in the northern Great Lakes region. When buying wild rice, look for a 'hand-harvested" or "lake-harvested" insignia on the package, which verifies the original organic, foraged variety. By purchasing authentic wild rice, you will be supporting both the economic system of the Native American harvesters (enabling them to produce more) and the crop itself, which is ecologically fragile.

 

 

SHALOM FROM SPIKE & JAMIE



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