Summer Fun

Pasta Primavara

April 27, 2011

Pasta Primavara


8 Ounces Uncooked Linguine

1 Thinly Sliced Medium Carrot

½ Cup Chopped Onion

½ Cup Julienned Sweet Red Pepper

½ Cup Julienned Yellow Bell Pepper

1 Thinly Sliced Medium Zucchini

1 Thinly Sliced Medium Yellow Squash

1 Cup Broccoli Florets

1 Pound (Cut Into 3” Pieces) Thin Fresh Asparagus

½ Cup Diced Mushrooms (Optional)

1/3 Cup Unbleached Flour

2 Cups Cold Water

½ Cup White Wine

¼ Teaspoon Salt

¼ Cup Minced Fresh Basil

6 Tablespoons Grated Parmesan Cheese

Cook linguine according to package directions.  Meanwhile, in a skillet coated with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, combine the carrots, onion, peppers, zucchini, summer squash and broccoli.  Cover and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes.  Add the asparagus and mushrooms and cook 5 more minutes.  In a saucepan, combine flour and water until smooth.  Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes – stir constantly.  Add the wine and salt.  Stir well and pour over the cooked vegetables.  Drain the linguine and add to the vegetable mixture.  Add basil and toss to coat.  Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.  Serves 6

Parmesan Potato Wedges

April 25, 2011

Parmesan Potato Wedges


6 Medium Baking Potatoes (About 2 Pounds)

1/3 Cup Melted Butter

1 Minced Garlic Clove

¼ Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

Sea Salt

Fresh Ground Black Pepper

½ Teaspoon Crushed Italian Seasoning

Line a 15x10x1 inch baking pan with parchment paper (or foil) and set aside.  Cut each potato lengthwise into eight wedges.  In a large bowl stir together butter, garlic, Parmesan cheese and Italian seasoning, ¼ teaspoon sea salt and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper.  Add potato wedges and stir to thoroughly coat.  Place the wedges on a prepared baking pan and bake in a preheated 425° F oven (uncovered) for 30 minutes or until tender.  Remove from oven and serve hot.  Serves 6

Almond Pound Cake

April 24, 2011

Almond Pound Cake


1 Teaspoon Plus ¾ Cup Softened Butter – Divided

2 Teaspoons Confectioners’ Sugar

1 Cup Slivered Almonds

1 Cup Sugar

2 Eggs

1/3 Cup Sour Cream

1 Tablespoon Grated Lemon Peel

1 Cup Unbleached Flour

1 Teaspoon Baking Powder

¼ Cup Lemon Juice

Grease the bottom and sides of a 9 inch round baking pan or a loaf pan with 1 teaspoon butter.  Sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar and set aside.  Place the almonds and sugar in a food processor.  Cover and process until finely ground. 

In a small bowl, cream the remaining butter and beat in almond mixture until combined.  Add the eggs one at a time.  Beat well after each addition.  Stir in the sour cream and lemon peel.  Combine the flour and baking powder.  Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture alternating with the lemon juice.  Pour into the prepared pan of your choice.  Bake in a preheated 350° F oven for 40 to 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.  Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes.  Invert onto a wire rack to cool completely.  Sprinkle cake with confectioners’ sugar.  Serves 6

Grilled Spiced Salmon Steaks

April 19, 2011

Grilled Spiced Salmon Steaks


1 Tablespoon Chili Powder

2 Teaspoons Brown Sugar

1 Teaspoon Ground Cumin

1 Teaspoon Dried Thyme

1 Teaspoon Sea Salt

2 Teaspoons Olive Oil

4 (8 Ounces Each) Salmon Steaks – ¾ Inch Thick

Lemon Wedges

Prepare outdoor grill for covered direct grilling over medium heat.  In a bowl, combine chili powder, brown sugar, cumin, thyme, salt and olive oil.  Use mixture to rub on both sides of salmon steaks.  Place salmon on the grill, cover and cook until just opaque throughout.  Approximately 4 minutes per side.  Serve with lemon wedges.  Serves 4

Asian Baby Back Ribs

April 8, 2011

Asian Baby Back Ribs

These ribs are delicious served hot or at room temperature.  For juicy, tender ribs, poach them before placing on the grill to barbeque.  Poaching before grilling also reduces the fatty content.



2 Racks of Baby Back Ribs


4 Tablespoons Chopped Ginger

10 Chopped Garlic Cloves

7 Cups Water

½ Teaspoon Five Spice Powder


10 Ounces Hoisin Sauce

5 Tablespoons Soy Sauce

3 Tablespoons Peeled & Chopped Ginger

5 Diced Garlic Cloves

4 Tablespoons Roasted Sesame Oil

¼ Teaspoons Hot Chile Sesame Oil

3 Tablespoons Dry Mustard

4 Tablespoons Dry Sherry

1 Teaspoon Five Spice Powder

3 Tablespoons Honey

To poach your ribs, use a pan that will fit ribs and your stovetop.  Use two pans if you need to.  Place ribs fatty side down, cover with poaching liquid mixture and bring to a boil.  Reduce to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes.  Do NOT poach at a higher heat or the ribs will come out tough.  Cool the ribs in the poaching liquid for 30 minutes and then discard the liquid and other ingredients.  While the ribs are cooling prepare the marinade.

In a large bowl, mix hoisin sauces, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, roasted sesame oil, hot chile sesame oil, five spice powder, dry mustard, dry sherry and honey.  Combine well.  When ribs are cooled, coat them in the sauce and turn to completely cover.  In a large sealable plastic bag (or bags) marinate in the refrigerator overnight. 

When ready to cook, prepare the grill for indirect cooking over a low heat. 

Remove the ribs from the marinade and reserve remaining marinade.  Cut rib racks into 4 to 6 rib sections and arrange meaty side up on the grill.  Heat marinade to boiling for three minutes and then reserve for basting ribs.  Turn, rotate and baste ribs with marinade every 10 minutes for an hour.  The ribs are done when they begin to pull away from the bone and bone tips are exposed.  Transfer rib racks to a cutting board and cut between bones to separate.  Serve any remaining marinade to use as a dipping sauce.  Serves 4

Garlic Shrimp

April 7, 2011

Garlic Shrimp

This dish is super easy to make and everyone will love it!


5 Tablespoons Olive Oil

5 Minced Garlic Cloves

1/8 Teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes

1/3 Cup Decent Quality White Wine

1 Pound Shelled & Deveined Shrimp

½ Teaspoon Sea Salt

1 Tablespoon Fresh Lemon Juice

1 Tablespoon Butter

Chopped Parsley To Garnish

Prepare the shrimp by shelling and deveining.  Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the garlic to the skillet.  Cook for a 1 minute and add the pepper flakes.  Increase the heat to medium high.  Add the wine and let it cook for 1 minute.  Now add the shrimp and season with salt.  Cook the shrimp for 2 minutes and add the lemon juice and butter.  Cook for another minute.  Remove and serve garnished with fresh chopped parsley.  Serves 8

Tart Cherry Pie

April 5, 2011

Tart Cherry Pie


Pastry For 9 Inch Two Crust Pie (Top & Bottom)

1 1/3 Cups Sugar

4 Tablespoons Quick Cooking Tapioca

6 Cups Fresh Or Frozen Pitted Tart Cherries

¼ Teaspoon Almond Extract

3 Tablespoons Butter

Preheat oven to 400° F.  Prepare pie pastry.

In a large bowl, combine sugar and tapioca.  Add cherries and stir well until blended.  Pour into a 9 inch pastry lined pie plate.  Sprinkle with almond extract and dot with butter.  Cover with remaining pastry and flute.  Cut slits in the pastry so that steam can escape.  Cover the edges of the crust with foil to prevent excessive browning.  Place pie on baking sheet and bake for about 45 to 50 minutes or until crust is golden brown and juice begins to bubble through the slits on the crust.  Remove foil during the last 15 minutes of baking.  Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack before cutting and serving.  Serve warm or at room temperature.  Add a scoop of vanilla ice cream if you wish.  Serves 8

Blood Orange Mimosas

April 3, 2011

Blood Orange Mimosas


2 Cups Chilled Fresh Blood Orange Juice

1 Bottle (750ml) Chilled Dry & Good Quality Prosecco

Fresh Blood Orange Slices For Garnish

Into each of 8 champagne flutes, pour ¼ cup blood orange juice.  Top off each glass with Prosecco and a slice of blood orange. Make sure that both juice and Prosecco are super chilled.  Serves 8

Key Lime Pie

April 1, 2011

Key Lime Pie



1 ¼ Cups Graham Cracker Crumbs

2 Tablespoons Sugar

6 Tablespoons Melted Butter


14 Ounces Sweetened Condensed Milk

5 Egg Yolks

½ Plus 2 Tablespoons Fresh Key Lime Juice

You May Use Bottled Key Lime Juice, But Fresh Is Always Better


¾ Cup Chilled Heavy Whipping Cream

Preheat oven to 350° F.  Stir together graham cracker crumbs, sugar and butter in a medium size bowl until combined well.  Press mixture evenly onto bottom on a 9 inch glass pie plate.  Bake crust in the middle of the oven for about 10 minutes.  Remove from the oven and cool in the pie plate on a wire rack.  Leave the oven on. 

Whisk together condensed milk and egg yolks in a large bowl until combined well.  Add the lime juice and whisk until combined well.  The mixture will be slightly thickened.  Pour filling into the crust and bake in the middle of the oven for about 15 minutes.  Remove from the oven and cool pie completely on a wire rack.  The filling will set as it cools.  Cover and chill for about 8 hours. 

Just before serving, beat the whipping cream in a chilled bowl with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form.  Serve pie topped with the whipping cream.  Serves 6

Naughty Nachos

March 27, 2011

Naughty Nachos

If I had to pick my last meal on earth it would be Naughty Nachos!


1 Pound Ground Sirloin

2 Teaspoons Chili Powder

2 Teaspoons Cumin

1 Teaspoon Paprika

1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder

½ Teaspoon Salt

8 Ounces Refried Beans

15 Ounces Black Beans

¾ Pound Grated Monterey Jack Cheese

1 Pound Grated Cheddar Cheese

1 Large Chopped Red Onion

½ Cup Chopped Green Onions

2 Chopped Tomatoes

8 Ounces Chopped Black Olives

3 Diced Jalapeño Peppers

16 Ounces Tortilla Chips

Iceberg Lettuce

Sour Cream  (optional)

Guacamole   (optional)

Salsa  (optional)

Brown ground sirloin in a medium skillet. Drain and add chili powder, cumin, paprika, garlic powder and salt.  Set aside.  Spread the refried beans over the bottom of a platter or shallow heat proof dish.  This is to anchor the first layer of tortilla chips.  Next, spread a layer of chips over the refried beans, top with layers of cheeses, ground sirloin, black beans, red onion, green onions, diced jalapeño peppers, tomatoes and olives.  Repeat until all ingredients are used.  Bake in preheated oven at 375° F for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and serve warm.  Top with lettuce, guacamole, sour cream and salsa. Serves 6

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