Asparagus In Vinaigrette
I learned how to make this dish while living in France. It is so easy and tasty!
2 Pounds Trimmed Fresh Asparagus
1 Minced Garlic Clove
1/3 Cup Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice
¾ Teaspoon Salt
¼ Fresh Ground Pepper
Place trimmed asparagus in a steamer basket. Place in a saucepan over 1 inch of water and bring to a boil. Cover and steam for 6 to 8 minutes or until crisp and tender. Do not overcook! Rinse with cold water and drain well. Set aside.
In a small bowl whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper. Pour over asparagus and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate until chilled. Makes a great side dish. Serves 8
Victoria’s Crab Cakes
1 Pound Lump Crabmeat
½ Stick Unsalted Butter (Divided – 1 Tablespoon & 3 Tablespoon)
½ Cup Chopped Shallots
1 Teaspoon Sea Salt
2 Large Eggs
1 ½ Teaspoons Worcestershire Sauce
1 Teaspoon Paprika
½ Teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
2 Teaspoon Tartar Sauce
1 Teaspoon Lemon Zest
¼ Teaspoon Tabasco Sauce
2 Tablespoon Chopped Fresh Parsley
2 Cup Cubed White Bread (About 4 Slices)
2/3 Cup Bread Crumbs
Pick through crab to remove any bits of shell. Try not to break up the lumps of crabmeat as you pick through. Heat 1 tablespoon of butter in a small skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and a half of teaspoon of salt. Cook until the shallots are translucent (about 2 minutes). Do not brown. Let the shallots cool. Whisk together the eggs, Worcestershire sauce, remaining half teaspoon of salt, paprika, freshly ground black pepper, tartar sauce, lemon zest, Tabasco, parsley and the cooked shallots. Gently fold in the crabmeat and bread cubes, taking care to not break up the lumps of crab meat. The mixture will be very wet. Using your hands, take a scoop of the crab mixture and gently form into a patty form about 2 ¼ inches across and ¾ inches thick. Continue until you’ve made 12 crab cake patties. Line a rimmed tray and a piece of wax paper just large enough to hold the cakes and sprinkle the bottom of the tray with half of the bread crumbs. Set the crab cakes in one layer on the top of the layer of bread crumbs and sprinkle them with the remaining bread crumbs. Cover the crab cakes loosely with another sheet of wax paper and chill in the refrigerator for at least one hour.
Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet on medium-high heat. The butter will melt and foam up. When the foam subsides, working in batches, place the crab cakes in the pan. Make sure not to crowd the pan. Cook until golden brown – for about 3 minutes on each side.
Remove from skillet and serve. Makes about 12 crab cakes
Spaghetti With Garlic & Oil
This classic combination of garlic and oil gives this simple pasta its heady flavor. Serve with lots of freshly grated Parmesan or Pecorino-Romano cheese.
16 Ounces Spaghetti
¼ Cup Olive Oil
1 Large Finely Chopped Garlic Clove
1/8 Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper (Optional)
¾ Teaspoon Salt
¼ Teaspoon Course Ground Pepper
2 Tablespoons Chopped Fresh Parsley
In a large stockpot, cook pasta. Do NOT overcook. Drain, but do NOT rinse. Reserve ½ cup cooking water. Meanwhile in a 1 quart saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add garlic and cook just until golden, about 1 minute. Add crushed red pepper and cook 30 seconds longer. Remove saucepan from heat. Stir in salt and pepper. In a warm serving bowl, toss pasta with sauce and parsley. Use the cooking water to moisten the pasta if necessary. Serves 6
Easy Add-Ins For Garlic & Oil Sauce
Spaghetti With Garlic & Oil is just the starting point for many delicious possibilities.
- Add 4 to 6 coarsely chopped anchovy filets in oil, drained (or 1 to 1 ½ teaspoon anchovy paste), and 2 tablespoons capers, drained to cooked garlic-oil mixture. Reduce heat and stir until anchovies & break up. Cook for about 30 seconds.
- Add ½ cup Gaeta, Kalamata or green Sicilian olives, pitted and chopped to cooked garlic-oil mixture. Reduce heat and stir until olives are heated through. Cook for about 1 minute.
- Add 2 to 3 ounces crumbled & firm goat cheese to tossed pasta. Toss again.
- Add 1/3 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes to pasta with garlic-oil mixture and parsley. Toss.
- Substitute 2 to 4 tablespoons chopped fresh basil, oregano, chives or tarragon for parsley.
4 Cups Shredded Green or Purple Cabbage
½ Cup Sour Cream
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 ¼ Pounds Tilapia Fillets
¼ Teaspoon Ground Chipotle Chile
¼ Teaspoon Smoked Paprika
¼ Teaspoon Salt 8 Corn Tortillas
1 Cup Salsa
Avocado Slices (Optional)
Grate 2 teaspoons lime peel and squeeze ¼ cup lime juice. Set aside. In a large bowl, combine cabbage and lime juice. Set aside. In a small bowl, stir lime peel and smoked paprika into sour cream and set aside. In a large skillet heat oil on medium-high until hot. On a sheet of waxed paper, sprinkle tilapia fillets with chipotle and salt to season both sides. Add fish to skillet and cook 5 to 6 minutes or until it turns opaque throughout, turning over once. Meanwhile, warm the tortillas. To serve cut fillets into 8 pieces. Place 2 pieces tilapia in each tortilla, top with cabbage, lime/paprika sour cream and salsa. Top with avocado slices if you wish. Serves 4
Egg Drop Soup
Egg drop soup is a traditional Chinese soup that literally means “egg flower soup.” The basic recipe is very simple.
4 Cups Chicken Stock
2 Lightly Beaten Eggs
2 Minced Green Onions
¼ Teaspoon White Pepper
½ Teaspoon Sea Salt
1/8 Teaspoon Sesame Oil
In a saucepan, bring chicken stock to a boil. Add the salt, pepper and sesame oil. Cook for about a minute. Very slowly pour in the beaten eggs in a steady stream. Gently stir the eggs in a clockwise direction until shreds form. Serve in individual bowls garnished with minced green onions. Serves 4
Asparagus & Prosciutto Rolls
18 Thick & Trimmed Asparagus Spears
2 Teaspoons Salt
6 Slices Imported Italian Prosciutto (such as Prosciutto di Parma)
4 Ounces Fontina Cheese – Cut Into Thin Slices
2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter – Melted
Freshly Ground Pepper
Bring about 2 inches of water to a boil in a large shallow pan. Add the asparagus and salt. Cook until the asparagus are partially tender when pierced with a fork (about 4 minutes – depending on their thickness). Do NOT overcook. Drain the asparagus and rinse them under cool water. Pat dry with paper towels.
Preheat oven to 350° F. Butter a large baking dish. Make 6 bundles of 3 asparagus each. Wrap a slice of prosciutto around the center of each bundle. Place the bundles in the baking dish. Lay the pieces of cheese on top of the prosciutto. Brush the butter over the asparagus. Sprinkle with pepper. Bake 15 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the asparagus are tender. Serve hot. Serves 6
Sangria has been important to Spanish culture for many centuries. This wine punch has gained international popularity and is easy to make at home. Versions of Sangria have held a planting of the Iberian Peninsula’s vineyards around 200 BC. As Spain’s soil and weather are particularly well suited for growing grapes, the nation has maintained an abundance of red wine and its subsequent wine punch variations. Interestingly, there is no one recipe for Sangria, as the ingredients of this wine punch are based on availability, season, and a number of other factors.
Sangria requires a light, young Spanish red wine. The most common of these come from the La Rioja, Castilla-La Mancha and Catilla-Leon regions. It is also necessary to include fresh fruit. Spain’s popular locally grown fruits include oranges, lemons and melon. Any fruit can be used, however, one might find bananas, apples, grapes or any number of fruits in Spanish Sangria. Sangria is meant to be light and refreshing so a certain amount of juice and sugar are generally added for a more refreshing taste. Sangria is to be served ice-cold and generally is prepared in large pitchers and served to guests as an accompaniment to a meal or tapas in the summer time
Sangria is to be served ice-cold as a hot-weather refreshment. Generally, it is prepared in large pitchers and served to many guests as an accompaniment to a meal or tapas in the summer time.
1 Cup Orange Juice
¼ Cup Lime Juice
1 Bottle Red Wine
½ Cup Brandy
¼ to 1/3 Cup Sugar
In a 2 quart pitcher stir together orange and lime juices. Add wine, sugar and brandy. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Cover and chill for 3 to 24 hours. Serve over ice. Garnish each serving with orange and lime slices.
Chai is the word for tea in many parts of the world. It is a centuries old beverage which has played an important role in many cultures. Chia from India is a spiced milk tea that has become increasingly popular throughout the world. The spices used vary from region and among households in India. The most common are cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and pepper. Drinking chai is part of life in India and many who travel to India come away with fond chai drinking experiences. Chai has become common at specialty beverage shops and there is a growing line of prepackaged consumer products. Great chai can often be found in Indian restaurants along with great food, but I think making your own chai provides immense satisfaction and makes your house smell divine!
½ Cup Water
1 Bag Black Tea (Orange Pekoe, English Breakfast, Lapsang Souchong or Darjeeling)
3 Inch Piece of Cinnamon Stick
2 Cups Milk
2 Tablespoons Honey
1 Teaspoon Vanilla
½ Teaspoon Ground Ginger
1/8 Teaspoon Ground Cardamon
In a small saucepan combine water, tea bag and cinnamon stick. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Discard tea bag and cinnamon stick. Stir milk, sugar, vanilla, ginger and cardamom into tea. Cook and stir over medium heat just until mixture is heated through (do not boil). Serve warm. Serves 2
2 Cups Marinara Sauce
1 Cup Plain Dried Bread Crumbs
½ Teaspoon Salt
½ Teaspoon Fresh Ground Pepper
1 Large Egg
2 Tablespoons Water
6 Veal Cutlets (1 ½ Pounds)
3 Tablespoons Butter
¼ Cup Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 Cup Part-Skim Mozzarella Cheese – Shredded
Prepare Marinara Sauce. On waxed paper, combine bread crumbs, salt, and pepper. In a pie plate, beat egg and water. Dip cutlets in egg mixture, then in bread crumbs; repeat to coat each cutlet twice. In a large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add cutlets, a few at a time, and cook until browned, about 5 minutes per side, using tongs to transfer cutlets to platter as they are browned.
Return cutlets to skillet. Spoon sauce evenly over cutlets. Sprinkle with Parmesan and top with mozzarella. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook just until cheese has melted – about 5 minutes. Serve over your favorite pasta. Serves 6
This sauce is very versatile!
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 Chopped Small Onion
1 Finely Chopped Garlic Clove
1 Can (28 Ounces) Plum Tomatoes
2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
2 Tablespoons Chopped Fresh Basil (use dried if this is what you have)
½ Teaspoon Salt
In a medium sized saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook. Stir until onion is tender – for about 5 minutes. Stir in tomatoes with their juice, tomato paste, basil and salt. Heat to boiling, break up tomatoes with side of spoon. Reduce heat and partially cover and simmer. Stir occasionally until sauce has thickened slightly – for about 20 minutes. Use to coat 1 pound of pasta for 4 main-dish servings. Makes 3 ½ cups.
Curried Cauliflower Soup
1 Chopped Onion
1 Tablespoon Minced Ginger
2 Cups Cauliflower Florets
1 Tablespoon Curry Powder
1 Teaspoon Sea Salt
1 Teaspoon Fresh Ground Pepper
1 Cup Coconut Milk
Chopped Cilantro For Garnish
Place onion, ginger, salt & pepper in a medium sized pot along with 3 cups of water. Cook for 10 minutes on high heat or until onion is tender. Next add the cauliflower florets and curry. Cook for another 5 to 8 minutes or until cauliflower is tender. Add 1 cup coconut milk and cook for another 2 minutes. Remove from heat and puree using a standing blender or food processor. Garnish with chopped cilantro. Serves 4