Saturday, May 30, 2015


Paprika is made from the dried ground fruits of several members of the chili family.  There are many grades and types available depending on the fruit from which it is made, including sweet, hot, mild and smoked.  Paprika produced in Spain is particularly fine and is an important ingredient in romesco sauce.

Thursday, May 28, 2015


 1/2 cup margarine
1 lb light brown sugar
1/2 cup milk
3/4 cup smooth or crunchy peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 lb confectioners sugar

In medium saucepan, melt butter;  stir in brown sugar and milk.  Bring to a boil.  Boil and stir 2 minutes.  Remove from heat, stir in peanut butter and vanilla.  Mix in confectioners sugar slowly.  Beat until smooth.  Spread into a buttered 9x13 pan or plate.  Chill until firm if desired.  Cut into squares.  Makes 3 pounds.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015


 2/3 cup butter
1/2 cup chopped onion
2/3 cup flour
7 cups milk **any milk can be used.  The heavier the milk the thicker the soup becomes
4 large or 6 medium baked peeled and cubed potatoes
12 strips bacon
1 1/4 cup shredded cheddar
1 cup sour cream
chopped green onions
salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter in large stock pot.  Add onions and simmer until onions become tender.  Add flour and stir until smooth.  Add salt and pepper.  Stir in milk and bring to a slight boil.  Add potatoes and bacon.  (I usually save the bacon out and just sprinkle  into each bowl when serving.)  Reduce heat.  Fold in cheese and let melt.  Fold in sour cream and serve.  Garnish with green onions.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


WebMD Recipe from
Total Time: 25 mins
Sauteed Cauliflower & Grape Tomatoes This Italian-inspired saute of cauliflower and tomatoes spiked with anchovies, garlic and vinegar pairs well with white fish or roasted chicken.


  • 2 tablespoons chopped pancetta
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 4 cups chopped cauliflower florets, (from 1 medium head)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 teaspoons red-wine vinegar
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 anchovy fillets, minced (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper


Step 1
Cook pancetta in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until it begins to brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pancetta to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
Step 2
Add 1 tablespoon oil to the pan. Add cauliflower, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 4 minutes. Add water and vinegar, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and tender and the liquid has evaporated, about 4 minutes more.
Step 3
Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, tomatoes, parsley, garlic, anchovies (if using), salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until the garlic is soft, about 2 minutes more. Serve the sautéed cauliflower with the crispy pancetta on top.

Monday, May 25, 2015


WebMD Recipe from
Total Time: 30 mins
Spinach Ravioli with Zucchini Ribbons For this light vegetarian ravioli recipe, we combine gorgeous long ribbons of zucchini with spinach-and-cheese-stuffed ravioli and a light cream sauce for a satisfying vegetarian pasta dinner.


  • 2 medium zucchini, very thinly sliced lengthwise (see Tip)
  • 1 pound fresh or frozen spinach-and-cheese ravioli
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half
  • 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese


Step 1
Put a pot of water on to boil. Place sliced zucchini in a large colander and set it in the sink. Cook ravioli according to package directions. Pour the ravioli and cooking liquid over the zucchini in the colander.
Step 2
Meanwhile, mash garlic and salt together in a small bowl with a fork to form a coarse paste. Combine half-and-half and flour in another small bowl and place near the stove.
Step 3
Heat butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallot and the garlic paste and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add wine and cook, stirring, until almost completely evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes more. Add the flour mixture and cook, stirring, until the sauce is thickened, about 30 seconds. Gently stir in the ravioli and zucchini, basil and pepper. Divide among 4 plates. Top each portion with 1 tablespoon Parmesan.


To make “ribbon-thin” zucchini, slice lengthwise with a vegetable peeler or a mandoline slicer.

Saturday, May 23, 2015


The stigma (three per flower) of the saffron crocus.  It imparts a yellow-orange color to food once infused -- use with restraint as too much can overwhelm other flavors.  Quality can vary greatly and the best is the most expensive spice in the world.  Nearly 3/4 of the world's saffron production comes from Spain.

Friday, May 22, 2015


WebMD Recipe from
Total Time: 40 mins
Sweet-&-Sour Chicken Drumsticks Chicken drumsticks stay deliciously moist when grilled—even with the skin removed. Minty sweet-and-sour dipping sauce adds a refreshing twist to “ordinary” grilled chicken. Make it a meal: Serve with brown rice and slices of fresh pineapple.


  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon cider vinegar, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
  • 8 chicken drumsticks, (about 2 pounds), skin removed, trimmed
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper


Step 1
Preheat grill to medium. (No grill? See Broiler Variation, below.)
Step 2
To prepare dipping sauce, combine orange zest, orange juice, water, honey, 1 tablespoon vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon salt and coriander in a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Whisk cornstarch and the remaining 1 teaspoon vinegar in a small bowl until smooth. Add to the saucepan and return to a boil, whisking until thickened, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove from the heat. Stir in mint.
Step 3
Sprinkle drumsticks with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Oil the grill rack (see Tip). Grill the drumsticks until crispy on all sides and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 165°F, about 15 minutes total. Serve the drumsticks with the dipping sauce on the side. Broiler variation: Position oven rack in the upper third of the oven; preheat broiler to high. Prepare sauce (Step 2). Coat a broiler pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle drumsticks with salt and pepper (Step 3), then broil, turning once, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 165°F, about 15 minutes total.


To oil the grill rack: Oil a folded paper towel, hold it with tongs and rub it over the rack. (Don’t use cooking spray on a hot grill.)

Thursday, May 21, 2015


Baked Lemon Pudding Cake

WebMD Recipe

Baked Lemon Pudding Cake This is an old-fashioned family dessert. It separates into two very different layers -- a cake-like layer on top and a creamy pudding layer on the bottom.


  • 2 tablespoons butter (no-fat or low-trans fat margarine can be substituted)
  • 6 tablespoons sugar substitute
  • 6 tablespoons super-fine granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 1 finely chopped lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup unbleached flour
  • 1 1/4 cups low-fat milk
  • canola cooking spray
  • powdered sugar


Step 1
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-inch pie dish with cooking spray.
Step 2
In a mixing bowl, cream the butter or margarine well with an electric mixer. Add the sugar substitute and sugar and beat well.
Step 3
With an egg separator, separate the eggs; save the egg whites in another mixing bowl. Add the yolks to the butter mixture one by one; gradually add the lemon juice and lemon zest. The batter will look like lemon frosting at this point. Add the flour a little at a time. Slowly add the milk to make a thin batter. Set aside.
Step 4
In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites until they are stiff with an electric mixer. Gently fold the egg whites into the lemon mixture. Pour the batter into the prepared pie plate.
Step 5
Place the pie plate into the preheated oven and bake 30 to 40 minutes. Remove the pie plate from the oven and allow the pudding cake to cool. Dust top with powdered sugar if desired and/or serve with fresh sliced strawberries

Wednesday, May 20, 2015


General Tso’s Chicken

WebMD Recipe from
Total Time: 30 mins
General Tso’s Chicken In this healthy version of a General Tso’s Chicken recipe, we cut the fat and sodium in half from the original version by not frying the chicken and by using half as much soy sauce in this Chinese-takeout favorite. Serve with steamed baby bok choy or sautéed spinach and steamed brown rice.


  • 5 tablespoons cornstarch, divided
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce, divided
  • 2 tablespoons Chinese rice wine or dry sherry, divided
  • 1 large egg white
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
  • 2 scallions, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups snow peas


Step 1
Combine 4 tablespoons cornstarch, 1 tablespoon each soy sauce and rice wine (or sherry) and egg white in a bowl. Add chicken and stir to coat.
Step 2
Combine the remaining 1 tablespoon each cornstarch, soy sauce and rice wine (or sherry), water, hoisin and rice vinegar in a small bowl. Set aside.
Step 3
Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a wok or large cast-iron skillet over high heat. Add the chicken; cook without turning, breaking up stuck-together pieces, until golden on the bottom, 2 minutes. Stir; continue cooking until golden on all sides, 1 to 2 minutes more. Transfer to a plate.
Step 4
Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, scallions and garlic. Cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Add peas; cook, stirring often, until bright green, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the reserved sauce mixture; cook, stirring, until thick, about 1 minute. Return the chicken to the pan; cook, stirring, until heated through, about 1 minute more.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015


Leek & Lemon Linguine

WebMD Recipe from
Total Time: 30 mins
Leek & Lemon Linguine This simple pasta recipe has bold lemony flavor. It’s nice with a salad for a light supper or serve it along with seared fish, shrimp or chicken. Vary it as you please—add a bit of crumbled goat cheese, chopped rinsed capers, shelled edamame or thin strips of yellow bell pepper.


  • 8 ounces whole-wheat linguine, or spaghetti
  • 2 large lemons, plus lemon wedges for garnish
  • 1 medium leek, (white and pale green parts only), thinly sliced and rinsed well
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley, divided
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 3/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1/4 cup snipped fresh chives, divided


Step 1
Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling water until just tender or according to package directions. Reserve 1 1/2 cups of the cooking liquid and drain the pasta in a colander.
Step 2
Meanwhile, finely grate 1 tablespoon zest (see Tip) and squeeze 1/4 cup juice from the 2 lemons; set the juice aside. Pat leek slices dry. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the leek, the lemon zest, 1/4 cup parsley, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until the leek is lightly browned and softened, about 6 minutes.
Step 3
Add the pasta, 1 cup of the reserved cooking liquid, the reserved lemon juice and the remaining 1/4 cup parsley to the pan. Cook, stirring constantly, until the liquid is mostly absorbed, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add the remaining 1/2 cup liquid, if desired. Remove from the heat. Discard the garlic. Toss the pasta with 1/2 cup Parmesan and 2 tablespoons chives. Transfer to a serving bowl or bowls; sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan and 2 tablespoons chives and serve with lemon wedges, if desired.


Tip: When we call for citrus zest (i.e., 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest) we are referring to the finely grated outer rind (not including the white pith) of the citrus fruit. Use a microplane grater or the smallest holes of a box grater to grate the zest. In some cases we call for long strips or threads of zest. To get long strips, peel the citrus with a vegetable peeler. To remove long threads, use a 5-hole citrus zester or remove long strips of zest with a vegetable peeler, then use a knife to cut into very thin strips.

Sunday, May 17, 2015


After cutting corn off the cob, use the back side of a knife (not the blade side) to scrape the cob again to extract the sweet milk left behind. This milk adds flavor and body to any corn dish.
Kerry Simon
Simon, Las Vegas

Lay the corn horizontally on a board, then cut off the kernels.

Run the back of your knife over the empty cob to extract the milk

Read more at:

Saturday, May 16, 2015


Dried Greek oregano is often sold in bunches.  Store dried herbs away from heat or light in airtight packets or containers; do not store in the fridge as transferring between a cold fridge and a warm kitchen can cause condensation inside the packet and spoil the contents.

Friday, May 15, 2015


2 1/2 cups Bisquick
1 cup finely grated cheddar cheese
3/4 cup milk
2 T butter, melted
1/8 tsp. garlic powder

1/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp dried parsley flakes
1 dash salt

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Combine garlic butter ingredients.  Mix well.  Combine biscuit ingredients in medium bowl.  Mix until well combined.  Drop approximately 1/4 cup portions onto ungreased cookie sheet.  Brush with garlic butter before baking.  Bake 14-16 min or until tops are light brown.  After baking, coat with additional Garlic Butter.  Serve Warm.

Thursday, May 14, 2015



1 lb. pecan halves
1 egg white
1 tsp. water
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt

Beat egg white and water until a bit frothy.  Pour over pecans and mix well to coat.  Combine sugar, salt and cinnamon.  Gradually add to pecan mixture.  Mix well to coat pecans.  Spread out in a single layer on a greased cookie sheet at 225 degrees.  Cook for 1 hour.  Stir every 15 minutes.  Cool slightly.  Store in an airtight container.

Saturday, May 9, 2015


Available in pieces (sticks or quills) and ground, it is one of the world's most common spices and is used as a sweet, fragrant flavoring.  True cinnamon is the dried inner bark of the shoots of the Sri Lankan native cinnamon tree; it is often blended with cassia (chinese cinnamon) to produce "cinnamon" commonly found in supermarkets.

Friday, May 8, 2015


This recipe is not for the diabetic.  Nor for those of you on a diet.  They are not  only good, but addicting.  Now I warned you!


9 cups Rice Chex cereal
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1-1/2 cups powdered sugar

Into large bowl, measure cereal; set aside.
In 1-quart microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter, uncovered on HIGH 1 minute; stir.  Microwave about 30 seconds longer or until mixture can be stirred smooth.  Stir in vanilla.  Pour mixture over cereal, stirring until evenly coated.  Pour into 2-gallon resealable food-storage plastic bag.  Add powdered sugar.  Seal bag; shake until well coated.  Spread on waxed paper to cool.  Store in airtight container in refrigerator.  18 servings (1/2 cup each)  ENJOY!

Monday, May 4, 2015


 1 can cream corn
1 can whole corn, drained
1 (8-oz.) sour cream
1 stick melted butter
1 beaten egg
1 box Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix

Grease 2 quart dish. Mix ingredients, add to dish. Bake at 350° for 1 hour.

Yummy and easy too!

Sunday, May 3, 2015


Low and slow.
Pat Neely
Down Home with the Neelys

Read more at:
Pat Neely's Tip 

Saturday, May 2, 2015


Small oily fish, Sardines are commonly purchased canned (tightly packed in oil or brine); fresh sardines are also available and grilled, pickled or smoked.  Anchovy fillets are preserved and packed in oil or salt in small cans or jars, and are strong in flavor.  Fresh anchovies are much milder in flavor.

Friday, May 1, 2015


Did you know that we eat about 90 acres of pizza a day -- not just me, but all of us together?  That's a lot of crust.  Pizza has become a very American thing -- I'm surprised we haven't seen a McPizza yet.  My pizzas here are small ones -- they're so cute and happy-looking, they'll make you smile.  Have a couple of these, along with a green salad (easy on the dressing), and you've got lunch.

Makes 32 appetizer servings

Prep:  20 minutes
Bake:  500* for 8 minutes per baking sheet

8 pieces (1 ounce each) frozen bread roll dough or bread dough, thawed
All-purpose flour for rolling
Nonstick olive oil cooking spray
1/2 cup pasta-ready tomato sauce
2 ounces turkey link sausage, frozen and partially thawed
1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
1/4 cup chopped onion or green onion (white and green parts)
1/2 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

1.  Preheat oven to 500*.  Shape thawed bread dough into balls.  On floured board, using rolling pin, roll ou to 3- or 4-inch circles, or pat out with your hands.  Coat 2 baking sheets with cooking spray.  Place 4 circles of dough on each sheet.  Spread each circle with 1 tablespoon sauce.

2.  With sharp knife, slice partially thawed sausage into very thin slices.  Divide sausage slices, sliced mushrooms, and chopped onion equally over dough circles.  Sprinkle with cheese.

3.  Bake, one tray at a time, about 8 minutes or until crusts are browned and cheese is melted.  Let cool slightly.  Remove to wooden board.  Slice each pizza into 4 wedges. 

27 calories
2 g protein
1 g fat (27% fat)
4 g carbohydrate
76 mg sodium
2 mg cholesterol

We've com a long way since that first tomato pizza in Naples.  Use this topping just as a starting point.  Other variations include a single sliced tomato with shredded part-slim mozzarella and fresh basil leaves to  a more fancy artichoke heart and sun-dried tomato.  The sky really is the limit.  Try a ham pizza with pineapple rings on top -- the perfect luau pizza.  Just be careful you don't load up on toppings that mean fat:  pepperoni, vegetables drenched in oil, or a half-pound of shredded full-fat cheese.

And for the bottoms, feel free to stray in other directions.  Frozen pizza dough is an obvious choice, but there's also pita bread, flour or corn tortillas, English muffins, or even matzoh for a very crispy no-bake crust.