Sunday, June 30, 2013

Beef Tenderloin

Beef Tenderloin
This recipe comes from a Canadian site which I use when I want something special, easy and a winner for sure!

This is a superb presentation for beef tenderloin. The outside is crusty and the inside pink and succulent,  an exceptional preparation for Beef Tenderloin.

One 3 lb (1.5 kg) beef tenderloin

1 tbsp (15 mL) Dijon mustard
1 tbsp (15 mL) soy sauce
½ tsp (2 mL) chopped garlic
1 tbsp (15 mL) freshly ground pepper
1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil
Salt to taste
1 Spanish or large onion, peeled and cut in thick slices

Horseradish Mustard
¼ cup (50 mL) Dijon mustard
¼ cup (50 mL) horseradish

1. Preheat grill to high.

2. Combine mustard, soy sauce, garlic, pepper and oil. Brush onto beef.

3. Place beef on grill and sear 1 side for 2 minutes, roll onto second side and sear another 2 minutes, roll again and sear the remaining side. Brush with baste. Turn meat after 15 minutes. Brush onions with baste and place beside meat. Turn onions after 10 minutes. Grill meat until medium-rare, about 135ºF (60ºC) on an instant-read thermometer or to desired degree of doneness. Check onions and remove when browned around the edges and softened, about 15 minutes altogether.

4. Mix together mustard and horseradish.

5. Remove meat from grill. Let meat sit for 5 minutes, then carve into slices and serve with onions and horseradish mustard.

Serves 4 to 6

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Excess Parsley or Basil In The Garden?

Excess Parsley or Basil In The Garden?
1. VERY briefly (like maybe 20 seconds) blanch a whole lot of parsley leaves you've removed from stems, then shock in ice water.
2. Spin and pat dry, getting rid of as much of the moisture as you can.
3. Put the parsley in a food processor and chop
4. Spread the minced parsley out in a thin layer on a parchment (or waxed paper) lined rimmed baking sheet, and put it into the freezer until it is completely frozen.
5. Scrape the freeze-dried stuff into a freezer container, label, and put in the freezer. Pull it out in the winter and spoon some out when you need the taste of fresh parsley in a dish (e.g., soups, even salad dressings) where it's not necessary to have the texture and appearance of actual fresh parsley. It tastes and smells amazingly fresh. I do the same thing with basil, if I've got any at the end of the summer after freezing mass quantities of pesto. Have never been anything less than completely happy with the aroma and flavor.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Maryland Crab Cakes

                MARYLAND CRAB CAKES:

1 large egg
2½ tablespoons mayonnaise (I'd use light mayo)
1½ teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ cup finely diced celery
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
1 pound lump crab meat*
½ cup panko
Canola oil

1. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

2. Combine the egg, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire, Old Bay, salt, celery, and parsley in a large bowl and mix well. Add the crab meat (be sure to check the meat for any hard and sharp cartilage) and panko; gently fold mixture together until just combined, being careful not to shred the crab meat. Shape into 6 crab cakes (about ½ cup each) and place on prepared baking sheet. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

3. Preheat a large nonstick pan to medium heat and coat with canola oil. When oil is hot, place crab cakes in pan and cook until golden brown, about 3-5 minutes per side. Be careful as oil may splatter. Serve immediately with tartar sauce or a squeeze of lemon.

Quick Tartar Sauce
1 cup mayonnaise
1½ tablespoons sweet pickle relish
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon minced red onion
1-2 tablespoons lemon juice, to taste
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Loaded Potato and Chicken Casserole

Loaded Potato and Chicken Casserole

This is a recipe a friend from Germany posted on her Facebook page.  I thought it might be of interest for the summer outdoor dining.
2 pounds boneless chicken breasts, cubed (1")
8-10 medium potatoes, cut in 1/2" cubes
1/3 cup olive oil
1&1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp. black pepper
1 Tbsp. paprika
2 Tbsp. garlic powder
6 Tbsp. hot sauce
2 cups fiesta blend cheese
1 cup crumbled bacon
1 cup diced green onion
Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Spray a 9X13" baking dish with cooking spray. In a large bowl mix together the olive oil, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder and hot sauce. Add the cubed potatoes and stir to coat. Carefully scoop the potatoes into the prepared baking dish, leaving behind as much of the olive oil/hot sauce mixture as possible. Bake the potatoes for 45-50 minutes, stirring every 10-15 minutes, until cooked through and crispy and browned on the outside. While the potatoes are cooking, add the cubed chicken to the bowl with the left over olive oil/hot sauce mixture and stir to coat. Once the potatoes are fully cooked, remove from the oven and lower the oven temperature to 400 degrees. Top the cooked potatoes with the raw marinated chicken. In a bowl ix together the cheese, bacon and green onion and top the raw chicken with the cheese mixture. Return the casserole to the oven and bake for 15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and the topping is bubbly delicious.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Pickled Sweet Cherries

Pickled Sweet Cherries
This is a shared recipe from the Penzy Spice recipe site on the internet.  I thought it sounded interesting and will try this  when I am able to find the cherries.  Yield: 5 Pints

2 cups water
2 1/2 cups white vinegar
2 cups sugar
5 bay leaves
7-8 peppercorns per jar
3 pounds cherries, washed and stems trimmed

Combine the water, vinegar and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a gentle boil.

Place bay leaves and peppercorns into your jars. Pack the cherries in jars as tightly as you can manage, but without squashing them.

Pour brine over the cherries, leaving 1/2 inch of headspace. Instead of using a chopstick to remove any air bubbles, gently tap the jars on a towel-lined countertop so that the bubbles rise to the surface.

Wipe rims, apply lids and process in a boiling water canner for 10 minutes.

When jars are cool, check seals. Eat cherries with cheese and feel joyful.

Pasta Alla Carbonara

 Pasta alla Carbonara
Before our oldest daughter married her husband, they came from Boston to Ohio for Christmas.  Mary thought we should have an Italian dish for breakfast.  Her husband prepared this dish for the family.  We all thought he was such a wonderful cook with his delicious version.



2 tablespoons olive oil
8 ounces diced pancetta or lean bacon
1 pound package bucatini or spaghetti
6 egg yolks, at room temperature
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese, mixed with 1/2 cup grated Parmesan or Grana Padano cheese, divided
2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
1/3 cup finely chopped parsley leaves (optional)


  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a rolling boil for the pasta. In a large frying pan, heat the oil until lightly smoking over medium heat, then cook the guanciale or pancetta until crispy, about 6 minutes. Keep warm.
  2. Drop the pasta into the water and cook until "al dente" according to the package instructions. As the pasta is cooking, warm a large serving bowl. Place the egg yolks in the bowl along with three quarters of the cheese mixture along with the ground pepper. Use a whisk and blend until well mixed.
  3. Drain the pasta, reserving a small cup of the pasta water. Add the drained, steaming hot pasta into the bowl with the eggs, along with a little of the pasta water, toss well to lightly cook the eggs and coat the pasta with the egg mixture. Add the warm guanciale or pancetta, and toss again to mix well. Serve the pasta in individual bowls with a sprinkling of the parsley and the remainder of the cheese.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Ginger Snap Cookies

Ginger Snap Cookies
This is a recipe from Americas Test Kitchens with Christopher Kimball.  I subscribe to Cooks Magazine by Christopher Kimball for the reasons that the recipes are easy but best of all I learn the reason for the ingredients or the mixing process.  I learned that sweet cream butter has a larger percentage of water than unsalted butter.  In this recipe it calls for the unsalted butter to be melted and cooked to a golden brown.  The melting butter will bubble while melting and the water evaporating.  Once the butter quits bubbling, watch closely as it burns easily at this point.
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and browned to a golden color.
     Remove from the heat and add:
2 tablespoons ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
Pinch cayene pepper
2 tablespoons peeled and shredded fresh ginger root
   Allow to cool and spices to blossom.
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup molasses.
Whisk to spice mixture.  Do not over mix.
Whisk and Add 1 egg and 1 egg yolk
Sift togeher:
2 cups flour
pinch salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
Refrigerate dough 1 hour.  Prepare baking sheets with parchment paper.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Place 1/3 cup granulated in a small dish.  Roll cookie dough into 1 teaspoon sized balls and roll in granulated sugar.  Place on baking sheet 3" apart.  Bake on top rack of oven for 15 minutes.  Rotate baking pan and bake on bottom rack 12 to 15 minutes.  Yield 8 dozen.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Breakfast Sausage

Breakfast Sausage
More homemakers everyday are giving attention to the quality of foods they are purchasing and consuming.  We all are concerned about the additives and their effect on our bodies.  This is a recipe for a Breakfast Sausage blend I received from Jessica Armentrout a member of the Penzy Post (spices) on Facebook.

1 Lb Ground Pork
1 tsp salt
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp paprika
3/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp mace
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
3/4 tsp sage
3/4 tsp thyme
1 tsp hickory liquid smoke

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Italian Pinhead Torta


The grand prize winner of the 2012 Spar for the Spurtle and the winner in the Specialty category at the 19th Annual Golden Spurtle Championship in Scotland. High Fiber, Low Sugar, Soy Free, Vegetarian.

1 oz dried Portabella Mushrooms
  • 1-1/2 cups boiling Water
  • 1-1/2 cups Steel Cut Oats *
  • 6 Tbsp Butter, divided
  • 1 cup diced Onion
  • 1 cup coarsely shredded Zucchini
  • 1/2 cup diced Sun-Dried Tomatoes  in Olive Oil, drained
  • 6 Eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh Oregano
  • 1 tsp Garlic Salt with Parsley
  • 1 cup dried Parmesan Cheese
  • fresh Parmesano Reggiano for garnish


Step 1

Rehydrate dried portabella mushrooms in boiling water for 10 minutes (reserving the liquid to soak the oats in). After soaking; drain, squeeze dry and dice mushrooms.

Step 2

Soak steel cut oats in reserved mushroom liquid for 10 minutes.

Step 3

Heat 2 Tbsp butter in an 11-inch non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Sauté onion in melted butter.

Step 4

While onion is sautéing, heat 2 Tbsp butter in a 10-inch saucepan over medium-high heat. Add soaked steel cut oats and stir constantly for 2-3 minutes or until remaining liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat and set aside.

Step 5

Once onion has become translucent; add the following to the pan: mushrooms, zucchini, sun-dried tomatoes and steel cut oats; mix well. Remove from heat.

Step 6

In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs and then add garlic salt, oregano and parmesan cheese. Mix well and then stir in steel cut oat mixture.

Step 7

Return 11-inch frying pan to medium to medium-high heat and add remaining 2 Tbsp butter. When butter has melted, immediately pour in steel cut oat mixture and place a tight fitting lid on your pan. Cook covered for 10 minutes or until cooked through. Remove lid and remove pan from heat; invert onto a serving plate. Immediately top with freshly grated Parmesano Reggiano. Slice and serve.

Serves 12.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Ligurian Fish Stew

Ligurian Fish Stew Recipe 
Ingredients Stew: 
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling 
1 medium carrot, peeled and chopped into 1/2-inch pieces 
1 onion, chopped 
2 cloves garlic, chopped  
Kosher salt
3/4 cup white wine, such as Pinot Grigio 
1 (28-ounce) can crushed or pureed Italian tomatoes (recommended: San Marzano) 
1 cup water 
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, plus extra for garnish 
1 1/2 pounds whitefish fillets, halibut, cod or arctic char, skinned and cut into 3/4-inch chunks 
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley 
1 (1-pound) loaf ciabatta or rustic bread, trimmed and cut into 3/4-inch thick slices.
Olive oil, for drizzling plus 3 tablespoons 
1 garlic clove, halved 
Directions For the Stew: 
In a 6-quart, heavy bottomed stock pot or Dutch oven, heat 1/3 cup of oil over medium-high heat. Add the carrot, onion, and garlic. Season with salt and cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 5 to 8 minutes. Turn the heat to high. Add the wine and scrape up the brown bits that cling to the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Cook until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, water and red pepper flakes. Reduce the heat and bring the mixture to a simmer. Cover and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 18 to 20 minutes. Season the fish with salt and add to the stew. Cook, stirring occasionally, until cooked through, about 5 to 8 minutes. Season the stew with salt, if needed. 
For the Crostini: Put an oven rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Arrange the bread slices in a single layer on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Bake until light golden, about 12 minutes. Cool for 2 minutes. Rub the warm toasts with the cut side of the garlic. Ladle the stew into serving bowls and garnish with parsley. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle a few red pepper flakes on top. Serve with the crostini.