Saturday, August 21, 2010

Un Petit Peu de FRENCH Cuisine

Classic Vichyssoise
(Potato and Leek Soup)

2 tablespoons butter
2 leeks, white and light green parts only, sliced into rings
1 medium yellow onion, sliced
2-3 teaspoons minced garlic
4 potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
2 t parsley or 1 t thyme (if you have it)
or 2 t herbes de provences
2 t nutmeg
4 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream or half and half
salt and pepper, to taste

In a large stock pot melt butter over low heat. Add leeks and onion, cover, and cook for 10 minutes. Add garlic and stir for 1 minute (don’t let it burn or it will make your soup bitter!)
Add potatoes and season with salt and pepper. Add herbs and nutmeg and stir well. Cover pot and continue to cook for 5-6 minutes.
Add chicken stock and bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook, partially covered for 30 minutes.
Take off heat and puree soup in blender or food processor or with immersion blender (this one is by the easiest. You can borrow my immersion blender if you want!). Slowly add cream and stir. If you like your soup thinner or thicker you can adjust the cmount of cream you add. If you add more cream, you’ll need to add more salt to taste.

French Crepes

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/3 cups milk
4 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 t vanilla
2 tablespoons white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt

In large bowl, whisk together milk and flour until smooth. Add eggs, melted butter, sugar, vanilla and salt until smooth.
Heat a medium-sized skillet or crepe pan over medium heat. Grease pan with a small amount of butter or oil applied with a brush or paper towel. Using a serving spoon or small ladle, spoon about 3 tablespoons crepe batter into hot pan, tilting the pan so that bottom surface is evenly coated. Cook over medium heat, 1 to 2 minutes on a side or until golden brown (if it slides easily back and forth in the pan, it's ready) and, if you're awesome like Eric, flip it over. If not, you can use various utensils to help you flip it. Cook 1-2 minutes on second side. Serve immediately.

Eric’s French grandmother (Babonne) always served these to him with just a little brown sugar inside, which I personally think is the best way to eat your crepe. (heh, heh)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Greek Week Recipes


3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 bunch green onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 pounds spinach, rinsed and chopped
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
8 sheets phyllo dough
1/4 cup olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Lightly oil a 9x9 inch square baking pan.
Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over
medium heat. Saute onion, green onions and garlic,
until soft and lightly browned. Stir in spinach and
parsley, and continue to saute until spinach is limp,
about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside
to cool.
In a medium bowl, mix together eggs, ricotta, and
feta. Stir in spinach mixture. Lay 1 sheet of phyllo
dough in prepared baking pan, and brush lightly
with olive oil. Lay another sheet of phyllo dough on
top, brush with olive oil, and repeat process with
two more sheets of phyllo. The sheets will overlap
the pan. Spread spinach and cheese mixture into
pan and fold overhanging dough over filling. Brush
with oil, then layer remaining 4 sheets of phyllo
dough, brushing each with oil. Tuck overhanging
dough into pan to seal filling.
Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes, until golden brown. Cut into squares and serve while hot.


2 1/2 pounds of pork shoulder, cut in 3/4 inch cubes
1 teaspoon of ground Greek oregano (rigani)
1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon of sea salt
2 tablespoons of red wine (or good red wine vinegar)
2 tablespoons of olive oil
In a bowl, pour wine (or vinegar) and oil over the pork and toss to coat. Sprinkle salt, pepper, and oregano, and toss again. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.Note: If using vinegar, do not marinate longer than 2 hours or the meat can absorb too strong a vinegar taste. If using wine, the meat can be marinated for up to 2 days as long as salt is also used.
Using 8 inch skewers, thread approximately 6 pieces of meat on each. This should make about 12 skewers.
Grill the meat turning until well browned, about 15 minutes. Serve on the skewers with a squeeze of lemon.

Tzatziki Sauce (Pictured above with Souvlaki)
16 ounces plain yogurt
1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded, and finely chopped Pinch kosher salt 4 cloves garlic, finely minced 1 tablespoon olive oil 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
Place the yogurt in a tea towel, gather up the edges, suspend over a bowl, and drain for 2 hours in the refrigerator.
Place the chopped cucumber in a tea towel and squeeze to remove the liquid; discard liquid. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the drained yogurt, cucumber, salt, garlic, olive oil, vinegar, and mint. Serve as a sauce for gyros. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to a week.

3 eggplants, peeled and cut lengthwise into 1/2 inch thick slices
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 pound lean ground beef or sausage
salt to taste
ground black pepper to taste
2 onions, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon fines herbs
2 tablespoons dried parsley
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1/2 cup red wine
1 egg, beaten

4 cups milk
1/2 cup butter
6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
salt to taste
ground white pepper, to taste
1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Lay the slices of eggplant on paper towels, sprinkle lightly with salt, and set aside for 30 minutes to draw out the moisture. Then in a skillet over high heat, heat the olive oil. Quickly fry the eggplant until browned. Set aside on paper towels to drain. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter and add the ground beef, salt and pepper to taste, onions, and garlic. After the beef is browned, sprinkle in the cinnamon, nutmeg, fines herbs and parsley. Pour in the tomato sauce and wine, and mix well. Simmer for 20 minutes. Allow to cool, and then stir in beaten egg.

To make the bechamel sauce, begin by scalding the milk in a saucepan. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Whisk in flour until smooth. Lower heat; gradually pour in the hot milk, whisking constantly until it thickens. Season with salt, and white pepper. Arrange a layer of eggplant in a greased 9x13 inch baking dish. Cover eggplant with all of the meat mixture, and then sprinkle 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese over the meat. Cover with remaining eggplant, and sprinkle another 1/2 cup of cheese on top. Pour the bechamel sauce over the top, and sprinkle with the nutmeg. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Bake for 1 hour at 350


1 (16 ounce) package phyllo dough
10 ounces chopped nuts
1 cup butter
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup water
1 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup honey

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Butter the bottoms and sides of a 9x13 inch pan.
Chop nuts and toss with cinnamon. Set aside.
Unroll phyllo dough. Cut whole stack in half to
fit pan. Cover phyllo with a dampened cloth to
keep from drying out as you work. Place two
sheets of dough in pan, butter thoroughly. Repeat
until you have 8 sheets layered. Sprinkle 2 - 3
tablespoons of nut mixture on top. Top with two
sheets of dough, butter, nuts, layering as you go.
The top layer should be about 6 - 8 sheets deep.
Using a sharp knife cut into diamond or square
shapes all the way to the bottom of the pan. You
may cut into 4 long rows the make diagonal cuts.
Bake for about 50 minutes until baklava is golden
and crisp.

Make sauce while baklava is baking. Boil sugar
and water until sugar is melted. Add vanilla and
honey. Simmer for about 20 minutes.
Remove baklava from oven and immediately spoon sauce over it. Let cool. Serve in cupcake papers. This freezes well. Leave it uncovered as it gets soggy if it is wrapped up.

Greek Rice

2 cups white rice
4 cups water
2T Olive Oil
1 T Italian Seasoning
2 t oregano
1 cube chicken boullion

Cook or steam rice according to package directions.

Greek Meatballs

½ pound Sweet Italian Sausage (this comes in links--remove from casings)
½ pound lean ground beef
1 egg
½ cup Greek Rice (or leftover white rice)
2 T brown mustard
1 T minced garlic
¼ c parmesan cheese
3 t Italian seasoning
2 t oregano
2 t garlic salt
1 t cinnamon
1 t nutmeg
2 t red wine vinegar
2 t balsalmic vinegar

Mix all ingredients well (I just use my hands). Form into 1 inch balls and place in 9x13 pan. Sprinkle with garlic salt and Italian seasoning. Cook for 45 minutes at 350 or until browned. Makes 20 meatballs. Eat with rice or serve in pitas for Greek Meatball Pita Sandwiches.

Greek Artichoke Salad

½ cup grape tomatoes (cherry would work too)
1 small bottle marinated artichokes, cut into 1 inch pieces
1/3 cup pitted kalamata olives
4 oz feta cut into small cubes

Put all ingredients in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Add Italian seasoning and oregano. Toss. (This would work well as a pasta salad. Just toss with farfalla or penne pasta)

Fruit Kebabs with Yogurt Dip

Strawberries, hulled and halved
Grapes, rinsed
Cantelope, cut into chunks
Pineapple chunks (fresh or canned)

Place fruit on skewers in desired order and enjoy!

Yogurt Dip
2 cups raspberry yogurt (I like the Mountainland brand because it isn’t too sweet)
1 cup light cool whip or whipped cream
1 t vanilla
1 t lemon juice

Mix all ingredients well and serve with fruit kebabs or fruit salad.


1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
¼ cup olive oil (plus more to achieve desired consistency)
1 t minced garlic
1 t cumin
1 t oregano
1 t nutmeg (optional)
¼ t cayenne pepper (optional)

Put all ingredients except olive oil in food processor. Turn on processor and slowly pour in olive oil until you get the consistency you like. Serve wth pita bread or vegetables.

Greek Fries

1 package frozen steak fries
2 t Italian seasoning
2 t garlic salt
2 T olive oil

Place fries on cookie sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle seasoning over fries and toss to coat. Cook at 350 for 18-22 minutes or until browned and crispy. Serve with hummus for dipping.

Greek Meatball Pita Sandwiches

Greek Meatballs, cut in half
Feta cheese
Kalamata olives
Grape tomatoes
Tzatziki sauce

Place damp towel over pitas and cook for one minute (this helps to keep them soft) right before eating. Cut pitas in half. Fill open pita halves with desired ingredients and sat up!

Simple Greek Salad

Layer sliced cucumbers and sliced tomatoes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Add crumbled feta to top. Drizzle with olive oil and balsalmic vinegar. 100 percent healthy and 100 percent delicious.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The FRUITS of our labors! (MAY)

Here are some refreshing, mouth-dazzling fruit recipes. This is such a taste-bud tempting collection that you really should start now and march carefully through them until you've tried them ALL!

Strawberry Amaretto Pastries

(Pampered Chef cookbook)
Lindsey Dewey

1/2 package frozen puff pastry (1 sheet), thawed
1/2 cup sliced almonds, divided
2 TB sugar, divided
1 orange
1 container sour cream (8 oz)
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 cups cool whip
12 large strawberries, sliced (or other fruit)

Preheat oven to 400. Unfold pastry dough onto cookie sheet. Finely chop 1/4 cup of the almonds and combine with 1 TB of the sugar; sprinkle evenly over surface of the dough. Lightly press into the dough.
Using a pizza cutter, cut dough into 12 even squares and separate on cookie sheet. Bake 16-18 minutes or until golden.
Lightly toast remaining almonds and then finely chop. Zest entire orange peel. Combine zest and remaining 1 TB sugar, stir and set aside.
Whisk sour cream, powdered sugar and almond extract in bowl. Fold in Cool Whip. Slice strawberries. Split open each pastry square and fill with strawberries, 2 TB filling, sprinkle with chopped almonds and orange zest, put pastry top back on and serve immediately.

Huckleberry Cheesecake
Maija-Liisa Adams
20 graham crackers, crushed
1 cube butter
1/2 c. sugar

1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese
2 eggs
1 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
Mix crackers, butter, and sugar well; pack lightly in 9 x 13 inch pan. Beat cream cheese, eggs, sugar, and vanilla well until lightly. Pour on top of crumbs and bake 20 minutes at 375 degrees. Cool.

1 qt. huckleberries
3 1/2 tbsp. cornstarch
1 c. sugar
Cook until thick. Cool spread top with whipped cream just before serving.

Fresh Mango Salsa
Ellie Christman

1 mango, peeled and diced
1/2 cup peeled, diced cucumber
1 tablespoon finely chopped jalapeno
1/3 cup diced red onion
1 tablespoon lime juice
1/3 cup roughly chopped cilantro leaves
Salt and pepper
Combine the mango, cucumber, jalapeno, red onion, lime juice and cilantro leaves and mix well. Season with salt and pepper, to taste

Oven-Baked Sweet Potato Fries

Sarah d'Evegnee

(Yes. Sweet Potatoes aren't fruit. I know that. But they sure taste fruity! Am I right?)

1 teaspoon(s) ground cumin

1 teaspoon(s) salt

1/2 t garlic salt or garlic powder (whichever one you have hanging around)

1/4 teaspoon(s) ground red pepper or 1/4 t cayenne pepper (or you can omit if you don't like a ZING)

1 tablespoon(s) vegetable oil (I prefer olive oil)

2 large (about 1 1/2 pounds) sweet potatoes

1.In a small bowl, combine cumin, salt, and pepper. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Peel potatoes, cut each in half lengthwise, and cut each half into 6 wedges. In a large bowl, combine the cut potatoes, oil, and spice mixture. Toss until potatoes are evenly coated.

2. On a baking sheet, arrange potatoes in a single layer and place on the middle shelf of the oven. Bake until edges are crisp and potatoes are cooked through -- about 30 minutes. Serve immediately.

Raspberry Trifle

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

1/4 cup white sugar

2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened (I usually just use 1--it just depends on how much of the cheesecake sort of flavor you like)

2 teaspoons lemon juice

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup white sugar

1 (10.75 ounce) package prepared pound cake

2 (10 ounce) packages frozen raspberries, thawed

2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting

  1. In a medium bowl, beat cream with 1/4 cup sugar until stiff peaks form. In another bowl, cream together cream cheese, lemon juice, vanilla and 1/2 cup sugar. Fold 2 cups of whipped cream into cream cheese mixture. Reserve remaining whipped cream.
  2. Slice pound cake into 18 - 1/2 inch slices. Drain raspberries, reserving juice. Line the bottom of a 3 quart glass bowl or trifle bowl with one-third of the cake slices. Drizzle with some raspberry juice. Spread one-fourth of the cream cheese mixture over cake. Sift one-fourth of the cocoa over that. Sprinkle with one-third of the raspberries. Repeat layers twice. Top with remaining cream cheese mixture, whipped cream and sifted cocoa. Cover and refrigerate 4 hours before serving.

Berries on a Cloud

This recipe can take 2-3 days to make, but is SO worth it!!!

6 egg whites

1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. cream of tartar

1 3/4 C. Sugar

Make at night: Beat egg whites until Fluffy.

Add cream of tartar and salt gradually

Then Add Sugar: Sugar should be added by very SMALL amounts

Beat until mixture holds it's shape(Should form peaks)

Spread in buttered 9x13 pan.

Bake at 275*degrees for 60 minutes.

Turn off oven and let crust cool in oven overnight.

Next Morning mix:

8 oz. Cream Cheese (softened)

1 tsp. Vanilla

1 C. powdered sugar

1- pint whipping cream

2 C. miniature marshmallows

Beat together cream cheese, vanilla, sugar, and whippping cream.

Add marshmallows.

Spread on top of meringue crust and refrigerate 12 hours.

1 C. Strawberries mashed

1/2 C. water

1/2 C. sugar

3 TBSP. cornstarch

Cook on stove until clear and thick.

Pour over filling. Slice approx. 2 C. berries and lay on top of dessert. Cover entire Dessert. Refrigerate overnight...

ENJOY!!!!!!!!One of my Favorites!

Berry Poke Cake

1 pkg. white cake mix

Water, oil, and eggs as called for on cake mix package directions

1 pkg. (4-serving size) strawberry or raspberry- flavored gelatin

1 cup boiling water

½ cup cold water

1 container (8oz.) Cool Whip

Fresh strawberry or raspberries

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Make and bake cake as directed on package for 13” x 9” pan. Cool completely.

Poke cake all over with fork. Stir gelatin and boiling water in small bowl until smooth; stir in cold water. Pour over cake. Refrigerate 2 hours. Frost with whipped topping; garnish with berries. Store covers in fridge.

Brownie and Fruit Cups

1 pkg. Brownie mix (plus ingredients to make)

2 oz. white chocolate

1- 8 oz. cream cheese (softened)

2 TBSP. milk

1/4 C. powdered sugar

1 C. thawed cool whip

(Mandarin oranges, strawberries or mini m&m's, grated chocolate etc.:for garnish)

Pre-heat oven to 350*

Make brownie batter according to directions.

Spray Mini-Muffin pan with oil. Fill each muffin cup 2/3 full.

Bake 12 min. or until done.

While brownies are still warm, gently push down middle to form a cup.

When cooled take out and put on non-stick cooling rack.

Meanwhile make Filling as follows:

Melt chocolate and milk together. Stir until smooth.

Mix Cream cheese and powdered sugar until smooth.

Gradually stir in white chocolate mixture until SMOOTH...Fold in whipped topping:

Fill Mini brownie cups and top with mandarin oranges...strawberries...grated chocolate etc...whatever you would like...DELICIOUS!!!!!

White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake

(This is my second favorite cheesecake recipe. The other one is the Turtle Cheesecake that's already on the blog.)


1 cup chocolate cookie crumbs, I use Oreo's

3 T sugar ( little less with Oreo's)

1/4 c butter, melted

Press mixture in bottom of springform pan


1 (10 oz) frozen raspberries

2 T sugar

2 tsp cornstarch

1/2 c water

2 cups white chocolate chips

1/2 cup half and half

3-- 8oz pkgs of cream cheese, softened

1/2 cup sugar

3 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

In saucepan, combine raspberries, 2 T sugar, cornstarch, and water. Bring to boil and continue boiling 5 minutes, until sauce is thick. Strain through a mesh strainer to remove seeds.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Melt white chocolate chips with half and half over double boiler, or in microwave. Stir until smooth.

In large bowl, mix cream cheese and 1/2 cup sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs one at a time. Blend in vanilla and melted chocolate. Pour half the batter into crust. Spoon 3 T of raspberry sauce over the batter. Pour remaining batter over and spoon 3 more T of sauce over batter. Swirl with butter knife to create marble effect. ( save remaining raspberry sauce)

Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, or until set. Cool. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours. Serve with remaining sauce.

Raw Apple Cake

Stir together:

2 c. sugar

1 c. oil

2 eggs

2 tsp. vanilla


3 c. chopped raw apples (do not need to peel)

walnuts (opt)

Blend into mixture:

3 c. flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 ts. salt

Pour into oiled pan (batter is rather thick). Sprinkle with a little sugar and cinnamon. Bake at 325 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Not Yo Mamma's Banana Pudding (from Paula Dean)

1 8oz cream cheese softened

2 c whipped cream, beaten with 1 t vanilla extract

6-8 bananas

2 bags chessmen cookies (Pepperidge Farm--This is the BEST part!)

1 14oz can sweetened condensed milk

1 5oz box french vanilla pudding (prepared)

Layer cookies, then bananas in 9x13

Combine cream cheese, sweet milk, and prepared pudding. Fold in whipped cream. Pour over bananas. Top with rest of cookies.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Friday, April 16, 2010

Italian Favorites

Champion Chicken Parmesan
By Cooking Light
Kelly Eyring

Tomato Sauce

1 cup boiling water
¼ cup sun-dried tomatoes, packed without oil
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 cups red bell pepper chopped
1 cup onion chopped
2 14.5 ounce cans diced tomatoes, undrained
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
¼ teaspoon black pepper
2 minced garlic cloves


¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup parmesan cheese grated
¼ teaspoon black pepper
4 skinned and boned chicken breast halves
1 large egg white beaten
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup romano, parmesan and asiago cheese blend
3 cups hot cooked linguine

1. To prepare sauce combine water and sun-dried tomatoes and let stand until soft.
2. 2.Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over med-high heat and add the sun-dried tomatoes, bell pepper, onion and sauté for 7 min. Stir in the canned tomatoes and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat and simmer 10 min. Remove from heat and stir in parsley, basil, vinegar,1/4 teaspoon black pepper, and garlic.
3. Preheat oven to 350
4. For chicken, combine flour, parmesan, and black pepper in a shallow dish. Pound breast halves to 14 inch thickness. Dip in egg white and dredge in flour mixture. Heat oil in nonstick skillet. Cook chicken until golden on each side. Arrange in a 9 by 13 coated with cooking spray. Pour tomato sauce over chicken and sprinkle with blended cheese. Bake for 15 min serve over linguine. Serves 6

Bacon Bowties
Debbie Willis

1 package bowtie pasta-cook according to package directions while preparing sauce

In separate pan...on med-high

1/4 cup butter
1 c. thick bacon in cubes

Heat through and add on lowered heat:

1/2 c. chopped onion
1 c. frozen peas

Add drained pasta and turn heat up.

Toss...salt and pepper to taste and add:

1/2 c. cream
1/2-3/4 c. freshly grated parmesan cheese

Toss and stir until sauce thickens

Sooooo easy!!!!

    • Strawberry Italian Ice
    • Janeese Summers

    • 5 cups fresh or frozen unsweetened strawberries, thawed
    • 2/3 cup sugar
    • 2/3 cup water
    • 1/4 cup lemon juice
    Place the strawberries in a blender or food processor; cover and process until smooth. In a saucepan, bring sugar and water to a boil. Cook and stir until sugar is dissolved, about 5 minutes; cool slightly. Add to blender. Add lemon juice; cover and process until combined.

    Pour into a shallow freezer container; cover and freeze for 4-6 hours or until almost frozen. Serve in cups.

    Sarah d'Evegnee

    4-5 ripe tomatoes, diced (I don't like to seed them--the extra juice is so good!)
    8 ounces mozarella cheese, cut into small cubes
    1/4 cup fresh basil, cut into chiffonade (roll basil and cut into small, confetti-like strips)
    2-3 T olive olive
    1-2 T balsalmic vinegar
    1-2 t salt
    1/2 t pepper
    1 baguette cut into rounds and toasted
Add all ingredients to small bowl and cover. Let sit for at LEAST 2 hours, but the longer it sits the better it gets! Serve with baguette slices and top with tomato mixture right before you eat it. (I usually let people assemble their own so they don't get soggy.) If you are feeling extra evil, you can toast the bread in a little butter in a frying pan. . . Just be warned that you will not recover for a while! (It is one of my all time favorite evil delights!)

Italian Sweet Potatoes
Hilary Jensen

2 lb. sweet potatoes, sliced lengthwise
Vegetable oil
Italian seasoning to taste
Salt & pepper to taste

Cover a loaf pan or baking pan with vegetable oil; add sliced sweet potatoes. Stir until the sweet potatoes are coated with oil. Bake in 350 degree oven. When potatoes are half done, add salt, pepper and italian seasoning; stir occasionally. Bake until brown. Makes 8 servings.

A Few Extra Italian recipes!

Olive Garden's Pasta Fagioli

2 lbs. ground beef (or Italian Sausage)
2 c chopped celery
6 cloves garlic, minced
4 cans (15 oz) Pasta ready stewed tomatoes ( w/ garlic , italian seasoning, olive oil)
1 1/2 cups beef broth, or water
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp cumin
1 c orzo or diatelli style pasta
1 can 6 oz julienne style carrots ( I use fresh)
1 can 6 oz corn
2 cans red kidney beans
1 can cannelini beans, white kidney beans

In large pot brown beef add celery and garlic when beef is almost brown. Drain. Add stewed tomatoes, water, cayenne and cumin. Bring to slow boil. Add pasta and continue to slowly boil until pasta is done. Add carrots ( if fresh, add sooner), corn, and kidney beans. Cook for additional 10 minutes.

Italian Coconut Cream Cake

1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup shortening
2 cups white sugar
5 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup flaked coconut
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups all-purpose flour

8 ounces cream cheese
1/2 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons light cream
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease three 9 inch round cake pans. In a small bowl, dissolve the baking soda in the buttermilk; set aside.
In a large bowl, cream together 1/2 cup butter, shortening and white sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in the eggs, buttermilk mixture, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1 cup coconut, baking powder and flour. Stir until just combined. Pour batter into the prepared pans.
Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool.
To Make Frosting: In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, 1/2 cup butter, 1 teaspoon vanilla and confectioners' sugar. Beat until light and fluffy. Mix in a small amount of cream to attain the desired consistency. Stir in chopped nuts and remaining flaked coconut. Spread between layers and on top and sides of cooled cake.

Chicken Spaghetti

1 Bag – Boneless Chicken Breasts – 4 to 5 pounds
3 Lbs of Spaghetti
3 Large Bell Peppers
1 Bunch of Celery
2 Onions
2 Cans – Stewed Tomatoes
1-2 Cans of EL PATO Sauce (Hot Tomato Sauce)
1 – Pound of Sliced Mushrooms
1 Qt. of Heavy Cream – (Secret Ingredient)
2-3 Lbs of Cheese
1 Stick of Butter

Boil chicken until done – be sure to save the broth vegetables – chop all vegetables small or large depending on how you like it. We use a food processor. Just don’t make mush out of it. Just don’t make mush out of it.

Saut̩ all vegetables in butter Рdo not brown.
Add Stewed tomatoes and EL PATO Sauce
Add 2 teaspoons of Garlic Salt
Salt & Pepper to taste
Simmer for approximately 5 mintues.

Add Chicken – Shred it in pieces, cube it or chop it.

Boil Spaghetti Noodles in Left over Broth, may have to add water. Boil until almost all of liquid is absorbed. Stir constantly so it won’t stick or burn in the pan.

Toss it all together – place in 2-3 Large Casserole Dishes. Bake at 300 degrees for 2.5 to 3 hours. Make sure it is covered with Foil or it will DRY out.

Take out of oven – Fork in heavy cream, mix well. Add cheese to top of casserole. Place in oven until cheese is melted, approximately 3-5 minutes. Do not cook too long with cream or it will curdle.

Serves 20 to 30 people

Foccacia Bread
This only takes an hour from start to finish!

tablespoon honey
2 cups warm water
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup diced onion
5 cups all-purpose flour, or as needed
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh chopped rosemary
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon kosher salt

Dissolve honey in the warm water in a large bowl, then sprinkle yeast over the top. Let stand for 5 minutes until the yeast softens and begins to foam. Stir in 1 tablespoon of salt, 1 tablespoon olive oil, onions, and 5 cups of flour until the dough comes together. Knead on a well floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 415 degrees F (215 degrees C).
Place dough onto oiled baking sheet, and flatten to cover the whole sheet evenly. Use the tips of your fingers to make indentations all over the dough spaced about 1 inch apart. Drizzle the focaccia with 3 tablespoons olive oil, then sprinkle rosemary, Parmesan cheese, and remaining 1 tablespoon of kosher salt over the top. Let rise for 10 minutes
Bake in preheated oven 20 minutes until golden brown.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Sunday Dinner Recipes

Gruyere Potato Gratin

Submitted by Kelly Eyring

By Jennifer Eyring

1 yellow onion, thinly sliced

2 T. olive oil

1 T butter

2 lbs. russet potatoes

2 cups plus grated Gruyere cheese (1/2 pound) get this at Sam’s

1 t. salt

½ t. pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Butter inside of large baking dish

Saute onion in olive oil and butter on medium low heat for 10 minutes

Peel potatoes, then thinly slice them. Mix the sliced potatoes in large bowl with 2 cups of cream, 2 cups cheese, salt and pepper. Add sauted onions and mix well. Pour potatoes in to baking dish and press down smooth. Combine remaining 2 T. cream with ½ cup cheese and sprinkle on top. Bake for 1 ½ hours until potatoes are very tender and top is browned and bubbly. Let set for 10 minutes.

This can be made and baked days ahead and then reheated at 350 for about 30 minutes.

Pecan-Crusted Salmon

Kelly Eyring

  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 5 teaspoons honey
  • 1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 3 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 6 (4 ounce) fillets salmon
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 6 lemon wedges


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). In a small bowl, mix together the mustard, butter, and honey. In another bowl, mix together the bread crumbs, pecans, and parsley.
  2. Season each salmon fillet with salt and pepper. Place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Brush with mustard-honey mixture. Cover the top of each fillet with bread crumb mixture.
  3. Bake for 10 minutes per inch of thickness, measured at thickest part, or until salmon just flakes when tested with a fork. Serve garnished with lemon wedges.

Cherry Cheesecake

Debbie Willis

1 package white cake mix
2 packages (8 OZ. each) cream cheese, softened
4 cups confectioners sugar
1 pint whipping cream, whipped
2 cans (21 oz. each) cherry pie filling

Prepare cake mix according to package directions. pour into two greased 13x9x2 in. baking pans. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. cool. In a mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese and sugar until fluffy; fold in the whipped cream. Spread over each cake. top with pie filling. chill for 4 hours or overnight.

Creamy Black Bean Salsa Chicken
Sarah d'Evegnee

This is ideal for those Sundays when you need a meal that doesn't take more than a few minutes to prepare, but will still feed the starving troops.

2-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup salsa
1 can (15 oz) corn, drained
1 can (15 oz) black beans, rinsed and drained
1 package taco seasoning
½ cup sour cream (We use light)
1 cup grated cheddar cheese (We use part-skim mozarella)
Place chicken in greased crock pot. Pour broth, salsa, corn, beans, and taco seasoning over chicken. Cover and cook on low 6-8 hours or high 3-4 hours. Remove chicken with slotted spoon and place on serving dish. Stir sour cream and cheese into sauce in slow cooker, then pour over chicken. Makes 3-5 servings. I also like to cook it in the oven in a 9x13 pan so the chicken doesn't get too soft like it does sometimes in the crook pot. Just cook at 350 for about an hour. (Frozen chicken breasts work GREAT too--you just need to cook it for about 15-20 minutes longer.)
I use 6-8 boneless, skinless, frozen, chicken tenders and I don’t remove them. About 30 minutes before dinner I add light sour cream and mozzarella cheese and stir to shred chicken. We eat it over brown rice and it feeds all of us.

Peanut Butter Fudge Cookies

Sarah d'Evegnee

1/2 c butter

1/2 c Peanut butter

1/2 c sugar

1/2 c brown sugar

1 egg

1/2 t vanilla

1 1/4 c flour

3/4 t baking soda

1/2 t salt

Cream butter, sugars, eggs, and vanilla. Add flour Baking soda, and salt. Mix well. Roll into 1 inch balls and place in greased mini muffin tine. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned. As soon as they come out of the oven, make an indention in the middle to create a sort of "well."

Let cool for 4-5 minutes. Fill with chocolate ganache (recipe follows)

Chocolate Ganache

1/2 cup milk chocolate chips

1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1/2-1 can sweetened condensed milk

1 t vanilla

Put chocolate chips in microwave-safe bowl and melt for 30 seconds then stir. Keep heating for 30 more seconds and then stirring until they are completely melted. Add 1/2 can of milk and then add more if it is too thick. Add vanilla. Put half of ganache in a ziplock bag and snip off about 1/2 inch of the tip with scissors. Pipe ganache into cookies.