Saturday, February 28, 2015


A fortified wine made from white grapes grown near Jerez, Spain.  Stored in American oak casks, it is aged in the solera system (where new wine is periodically added and moved progressively through a series of barrels).  Sherry is aged this way for a minimum of 3 years; sherry vinegar from Jerez is aged this way for an average of 6 years.

Friday, February 27, 2015


2 large pita breads, cut into wedges
1 medium green bell pepper, finely chopped
1 cucumber, seeded,, finely chopped
1 tomato, finely chopped
4 red radishes, coarsely grated
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh mint
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, crushed

1. Preheat broiler.

2. Place bread on baking sheets; toast under broiler about 5 minutes or until browned both sides and crisp.

3. Combine remaining ingredients in medium bowl; season to taste.

4. Serve salad with pita crisps.

Prep & Cook Time:  25 minutes
Serves:  8

Wednesday, February 25, 2015


1.  Put 1/2 cup teriyaki sauce into a resealable plastic bag.  Add flank steak and marinate it for a day or two.

2.  Slice the steak into thin strips about 2 inches wide.

3.  Roll the steak tightly into pinwheels.  Keep them closed with a toothpick inserted into the end of the meat or tie them closed with cotton twine.

4.  Roast in a baking dish at 350* for 30 minutes.  You can also broil or grill them, but roasting makes them super tender.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015


5 tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons each coarsely chopped fresh mint and dill

2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoons white wine vinegar

1.  Make dressing.

2.  Combine tomatoes, herbs and dressing in medium bowl.

dressing  Place ingredients in screw-top jar, season to taste; shake well.

prep time:  15 minutes
serves:  4

Sunday, February 22, 2015


For best results when you're baking, leave butter and eggs at room temperature overnight.
Ina Garten
Barefoot Contessa: Back to Basics

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Ina Garten's Tip

Saturday, February 21, 2015


This Cypriot cheese is often used in Greek cooking.  It's a firm, traditionally sheep-milk cheese (also goat's or cow's milk varieties) with a minty, salty flavor; it does not break down when cooked, however it should be eaten while still warm as it becomes tough and rubbery on cooling.

Friday, February 20, 2015


6 large oranges, peeled, thinly sliced
2 tomatoes, thickly sliced
1 large red onion, thinly sliced
3 ounces manchego cheese, shaved
3/4 cup pitted black olives, halved
2 large avocados, coarsely chopped
1 cup loosely packed fresh mint

orange dressing
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 clove garlic, crushed

1.  Make orange dressing.

 2.  Place orange in large bowl with remaining ingredients and dressing; toss gently to combine.  Season to taste.

Orange dressing:  Place ingredients in screw-top jar; shake well.

Prep time:  20 minutes
Serves:  6

Tip:  Manchego cheese is a sharp, firm Spanish cheese; it can be found in most specialty food stores and delicatessens.  You can use Parmesan cheese instead, if manchego is not available.

Thursday, February 19, 2015


2 teaspoons olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
4 cups chicken stock
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup arborio rice
2 eggs
1/3 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1.  Heat oil in large pot; cook onion, stirring, until it softens.  Add stock, chicken and rice; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; simmer, covered, about 20 minutes or until rice is tender.  Remove from heat.

2.  Whisk eggs and juice in small bowl until smooth.  Gradually whisk 1/2 cup hot soup into egg mixture, then stir warmed egg mixture back into soup.

3.  Serve bowls of soup sprinkled with parsley.

Prep and cook time:  45 minutes
Serves:  4

Tip:  This soup is our take on the classic avgolemono (which translates as egg and lemon).  There are as many variations of this soup as there are Greek families, but the avgolemono mixture, added near the end of the cooking time, is always the crowning glory.

Arborio rice is an excellent choice for this recipe due to its high starch level, making for a deliciously creamy soup.

Monday, February 16, 2015


1 c. sugar
2 tbsp. flour
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. lemon juice
5 c. thinly sliced apples
2 tbsp. butter
Pastry for 2 crust 9 inch pie
Combine sugar, flour, spices, salt and lemon juice. Add apples, toss to mix. Roll out pastry. Line pie pan. Roll pastry for top. Cut vents near center. Add half the apples. Pack well. Dot with butter. Add remaining apples. Moisten rim with water. Adjust top crust. Seal rim by pressing together. Brush with milk. Bake at 400 degrees for 50 to 60 minutes or until apples tests done with fork.

Sunday, February 15, 2015


Always season meat and fish evenly; sprinkle salt and pepper as though it's "snowing." This will avoid clumping or ending up with too much seasoning in some areas and none in others.
Mary Dumont
Harvest, Cambridge, MA

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Saturday, February 14, 2015


Traditionally made with sheep's milk, now most often cow' milk.  It is shaped into large blocks which are salted, sliced and salted again, then packed in whey for a month or so  It ends up firm, sharp-flavored and salty.  Packed in brine, it should be eaten within a day or two of purchase.

Friday, February 13, 2015



1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 teaspoons each cumin seeds and ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon hot paprika
3 pounds turnips, trimmed, coarsely chopped
6 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1.  Heat oil in large saucepan; cook onion and garlic, stirring until onion softens.  Add spices; cook, stirring until fragrant.

2.  Add turnip and stock to pan; bring to a oil.  Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, until turnips are tender.  Cool 15 minutes.

3.  Blend or process soup, in batches, until smooth.  Return to same pan with cream; stir until hot.

4.  Serve bowls of soup sprinkled with parsley.

Prep + cook time:  50 minutes
Serves:  4

Thursday, February 12, 2015



1 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 cup brown lentils, rinsed, drained
1 can (14 oz.) diced tomatoes
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 cups water
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh dill

1.  Heat oil in large saucepan, cook onion, stirring until softened.  Stir in garlic, cook until fragrant.

2.  Stir in lentils, undrained tomatoes, stock, the water and bay leaf; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; simmer, covered, about 50 minutes or until lentils are tender.  Season to taste.  Discard bay leaf.

3.  Serve soup sprinkled with dill.

 Prep + cook time:  1 hour
Serves:  4
Serving Suggestions:  A dash of red wine vinegar for each bowl and crusty bread. 

Wednesday, February 11, 2015


In a greased 2 quart casserole dish stir together:
5 cups of blueberries
1 cup of sugar
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg

In a medium sized bowl mix together:
1 1/2 cups of oats
1/2 cup of brown sugar
1/3 cup of flour
1 stick of butter

Sprinkle mixture on top of blueberries.

Bake at 350 degrees for one hour.

For a Fall treat instead of blueberries use 2 cups of cranberries and 3 cups of apples.  Leave out the nutmeg.

Use cherries for Valentine's Day.  Make it even easier by using canned cherry pie filling.  Leave out the cinnamon and nutmeg if you do this.

In the summer use peaches instead of the blueberries.

The variations are endless.  Basically, you can't go wrong.


Tuesday, February 10, 2015


1/2 pound lean ground beef
1/4 pound ground pork
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup grated Pecorino romano cheese
1/2 cup stale breadcrumbs
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 egg
5 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes

1.  Combine beef, pork, onion, cheese, breadcrumbs, parsley, egg, 2 cloves garlic and cumin in medium bowl; season.  Roll level tablespoons of mixture into balls.

2.  Heat oil in large, non-stick skillet over medium-high heat; cook meatballs, in tomatoes, until browned.  Remove from skillet.

3.  Cook onion in same pan, stirring, until softened.  Stir in remaining garlic; cook until fragrant.  Add tomatoes; return meatballs to skillet.  Bring to a boil; simmer, uncovered, about 10 minutes or until meatballs are cooked through.  Season to taste.

prep & cook time:  35 minutes
makes:  24

tip:  To shape the meatballs, it's important to chop the onion finely.  The secret to round meatballs is to make a circular movement with the skillet to roll the meatballs while they cook.  Use 3/4 pound ground meatloaf mix in place of ground beef and pork, if desired.

serving suggestion:  Crusty bread

Sunday, February 8, 2015


If you keep it simple and buy ingredients at farmers' markets, the food can pretty much take care of itself. Do as little as possible to the food; consider leaving out an ingredient and relying on instinct.
Tony Mantuano
Spiaggia, Chicago

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Saturday, February 7, 2015


This yogurt has been strained in a cloth (traditionally muslin) to remove the whey and give it a creamy consistency.  It's ideal for use in dips and dressings and is widely available in most supermarkets.

Friday, February 6, 2015


2 pounds chicken thighs, boneless, skinless
2 talbespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh mint
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika

1.  Trim any fat from chicken; cut into 3/4-inch thick strips.  Combine chicken with remaining ingredients in medium bowl.  Thread chicken onto 20 bamboo skewers.  Cover; refrigerate 3 hours or overnight.

2.  Cook skewers in heated oiled grill pan until browned and cooked through.

Prep + cook time:  35 minutes (+ refrigeration)
Makes:  20
Tip:  Soak bamboo skewers in cold water for at least an hour before using to prevent them from scorching during cooking.  For optimum flavor, marinate the chicken overnight.

Serving suggestion:  Lemon wedges

Thursday, February 5, 2015


Slow-Cooker Cheesy Bacon Chex® Mix

Prep time:  5 minutes
Total time:  2 hours 5 minutes
Servings:  24

3 cups Corn Chex cereal
3 cups Rice Chex cereal
2 cups Wheat Chex cereal
2 cups bite-sized pretzels
2 cups bite-sized cheese crackers
1/3 cup bacon-flavored bits
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
1/3 cup canola or vegetable oil
1 package (1 oz.) ranch dressing and seasoning mix (milk recipe)

1.  In an oval 5- to 6- quart slow cooker stir together 3 cereals, pretzels, cheese crackers, bacon bits and Parmesan cheese.

2.  In a small bowl beat together butter, oil and ranch dressing mix until well combined.  Pour over cereal mixture; stir until well coated.

3.  Cook uncovered on high heat setting for 2 hours stirring every 15 to 20 minutes.

4.  Spread mixture on ungreased cookie sheet or piece of waxed paper.  Cool 3 to 5 minutes before serving.


Sunday, February 1, 2015


To make a great sandwich, spread the mayonnaise from corner to corner on the bread. People rush this step and just do a swoosh down the middle. Every bite should be flavorful. Now that's a sandwich!
Roy Choi
Kogi BBQ and A-Frame, Los Angeles

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