Spike's & Jamie's Recipe Collection & a Whole Lot More!

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Recipes from Spike & Jamie

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Contents Disk 215

How to use these pages:  Below is a list of the recipes on this page.  You can either scroll down the page and look at all of the recipes, or look at the titles.  When you find one that seems interesting, use your web browsers FIND function to take you directly to that recipe (on my IE browser it's Edit/Find (on this page)   or Ctrl - F on your keyboard).






































































1 Box angel hair pasta

2 cn Stewed tomatoes

-juice from one lemon (small)

1 c Broccoli, chopped

3 Cloves garlic, chopped up fine

2 t Fresh oregano

1 t Basil

1 t Thyme

Cook pasta. Cook broccoli (steam or boil). Mix pasta, broccoli and rest of

ingredients. Its that easy and tastes great! Serves one - only.




5 pounds apricots (approximately 50 medium or 10 cups)

3/4 cup crushed pineapple (6 ounce can)

1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon rind

11 cups sugar (approximately)

1 1/2 cups chopped or blanched almonds or 1/2teaspoon almond flavoring

Makes 9 to 10 cups


Wash, halve and pit apricots. Cut into quarters. Combine fruits and measure. Add 3/4 cup sugar for each cup of fruit. Bring to a rolling boil on high heat. Reduce heat and cook until thick about 20 to 40 minutes, stirring often. Keep cooking until the desired consistency is reached. Test by putting a tablespoon of conserve in small dish and place in the freezer for 5 minutes. If it is too thin, keep cooking. Remove from heat. Skim. Stir in almonds or flavoring. Ladle hot conserve into hot, clean jars. Seal at once. Process in simmering water bath for 15 minutes.




By NANCY FELDMAN, THE MODESTO BEE (Wednesday, May 30, 2001)


Fresh, ripe California apricots are irresistible. They ripen throughout the month of May and into June. And while the peak season is short, consumer demand is growing. California ranks number one nationally in apricot production, growing about 95 percent of the nation's apricots.


Nutritionally speaking, the apricot has much to offer. Fresh apricots are one of the best natural sources of vitamin A.


Essential for healthy skin and mucous membranes, vitamin A also is needed for good sight. Insufficient amounts can cause night blindness, impair sight and increase susceptibility to colds and other illnesses.


Three average size apricots provide 60 calories with a minimal amount of fat, yet provide 45 percent of the daily allowance of vitamin A and 20 percent of vitamin C, along with 1 gram of dietary fiber.


Local varieties include:


Patterson (approximate maturity date is late June). Large, colorful and firm-fleshed.


Tilton (approximate maturity date is late June). Longtime favorite, good size, tender and juicy with a sweet-tart flavor.


Other California varieties include: Modesto, Blenheim (Royal and Derby), Tracy and Westley.


Attached is a popular conserve recipe. A conserve is a preserve (large chunks of fruit) with nuts.


ASK THE CHEF May 31, 2001


Q. I found a recipe for Pears Poire William, and I have no idea what Poire William is. Can you help me?


A. Poire William is a sweet pear liqueur named after the variety of pear the French call Williams Bon-Chretien, and which our secular society calls Bartlett. A Poire William can be either a true pear brandy, distilled from pears and made in Alsace and Switzerland, or a hybrid, made by infusing crushed pear with a grape-based spirit. Stuart Walton, author of The New Guide to Spirits and Liqueurs says that, like pears in general, Poire William can have a strong and luscious flavor, while the taste is often "disappointingly mild."


In the absence of Poire William, pear nectar and brandy in some combination would probably be a fine substitute.



Q. We almost always have either skim milk or 1% milk in the house. When a recipe calls for whole milk can I add light cream to it? If so, what proportions would I use to make whole milk?


A. There are significant differences in cooking properties between milk and cream. The more fat, the less likely a dish is to curdle, so you can be taking a substantial risk if you substitute skim milk for heavy cream in a cooked recipe. But, in general, a recipe that calls for milk or whole milk is not using it for its cooking properties - rather to add flavor and richness to the dish. The use of skim or reduced-fat milk in place of whole milk will produce just the result you expect - a thinness in both taste and texture. Depending on the amount of milk called for, the difference may or may not be very meaningful to you.


You can certainly boost the amount of fat in the milk you have on hand to approximate whole milk, which has about 3.5% fat. Half and half has about 10% fat, light cream has about 20%, and whipping or heavy cream runs between 30% and 40%. We recently got into trouble by bragging about our math skills, so by first admitting that these numbers may be wildly inaccurate, we believe you would approximate whole milk by mixing one part half and half with three parts of 1% milk, one part light cream to seven parts 1% milk, and one part heavy cream to 15 parts of 1% milk (or 1 tablespoon cream to 1 cup less 1 tablespoon of 1% milk). As a practical matter, the proportions don't matter all that much - add a little cream and you boost flavor and richness.



Q. I have a recipe for Irish Creme Mousse cake that uses gelatin leaves in the preparation. What are gelatin leaves? Are there any substitutes?


A. Leaf or sheet gelatin is the same substance as granulated gelatin, just packaged and sold in a different form. It is more widely used in Europe (and shows up in more European recipes) than in the States. The gel-making ability of sheet gelatin is constant no matter what its size, so four leaves equal the amount of gelatin in the standard 1/4-ounce packet sold here. Leaf gelatin dissolves a little less readily than granulated gelatin, which is surely another reason that it is not as popular in our speed-obsessed kitchens.



Q. I am curious about soy milk safety. I know that with cow's milk, one can generally use it one or two days after the "best before" date, without too much trouble. How strict are the "best before" dates on soy milk? I would also like to know how strictly it needs to be refrigerated. I would like to bring a small amount of soy milk on camping trips, but I don't know if I could pack enough ice to keep it safely cold.


A. Soy milk is most often sold in aseptic packaging, which has an unrefrigerated shelf life of at least a year. Once opened it needs refrigeration, and, according to all the sources we can find, should be used within five days. Soy milk is also sold refrigerated in plastic containers. We have no reason to believe that that the manufacturer's use-by date is any more liberal for soy milk than for cow's. You can also buy powdered soy milk, which is said to lose in flavor what it makes up for in convenience. (One of our sources even suggests that the powder should be refrigerated, which takes away any possible benefit the powder might have.)


Eden Foods sells small aseptic packages of its Edensoy Organic Soymilk (just over a cup per package), and perhaps other brands are available in small size as well. Rather than carry the weight of that ice on your camping trips, why not just pack as many small containers of soy milk as you think you'll need, and pour out whatever you don't use each day? It's organic, so the environment won't mind....



Q. I have been given a bunch of ginger root. And I was wondering if there is a way to make ground ginger with it?


A. Yes, but it may not be the best solution to your problem of abundance. You can dry ginger by peeling it, slicing it thinly or grating it, then placing the shards in a dehydrator or on a mesh in a very cool oven (less than 100░F (40░C)) or in a warm, dry location in a room, turning it once daily until dry. At that point, you could use a spice grinder to produce your very own ground ginger. But it will suffer the same diminution of flavor you find with store-bought ginger. And, like store-bought, the longer you keep it around, the less flavor it will have. So don't make more than you can use within a few months.


You can wrap fresh ginger in plastic and then seal it in a freezer bag and keep it in the freezer for up to a year. Some people find it a bit soggy as it thaws and object to that, but it retains its flavor, and in many cooked dishes the texture change is not noticeable. You can grate it without thawing, which can save you some time. You can also store fresh, peeled ginger in a jar of sherry or Madeira for about three months, which will flavor the ginger a bit, but will also flavor the wine and make it particularly suitable for stir fry dishes, sauces, salad dressings, etc.



Q. I have a daughter who is allergic to corn syrup. She has been craving some type of lollipop. How would I make lollipops or any hard candy without corn syrup? Would brown rice syrup be a good replacement?


A. Corn syrup is often used in candy making to control sugar's tendency to be grainy and to crystallize. We think several other liquid sweeteners would substitute nicely. Golden syrup, a pale derivative of the process of refining sugar cane, is our best guess. Other options include the rice syrup you suggest or barley malt. We'd stay away from honey, though. First, it has a lot more flavor than corn syrup or the other choices and might overpower whatever fruit or mint flavors you might choose. Second, it tends to soften candy, because it attracts moisture.



Q. What is Greek yogurt? One of the recent ucook.com Recipes of the Day called for this. I don't know how it differs from regular, or non-Greek, yogurt.


A. Greek yogurt is especially creamy, and, according to George Mondiotis, author of Traditional Greek Cooking, "probably superior to any other obtainable in Europe." What hope, then, can we in the relatively yogurt-impoverished United States have? Greek varieties made with ewe's milk contain about 5% milkfat, and cow's milk yogurts contain 9% (as opposed to whole-milk yogurts in this country which have around 3.5%).


If you substitute plain, American whole-milk yogurt in your recipe, it will fail miserably, and your self-esteem will suffer. Then again, none of the eight Greek cookbooks we checked specify Greek yogurt in recipes that call for yogurt, so we're guessing most any whole-milk yogurt you find will work.



Q. Julia Child's recipe for a mixed-starter bread calls for using a small piece of previously made yeast dough. Can this dough have been frozen & thawed?


A. Almost certainly. Freezing is a good way to keep a starter that isn't seeing active use. You lose a bit of the yeast when you freeze it, but there should be enough life left in it to help raise and flavor your new dough. Bernard Clayton, author of Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads, says if your starter doesn't show signs of life after it has thawed, you may need to give it a little boost with some instant-rise yeast.



Q. Can you give me one Bulgarian pie recipe?


A. Not really. We can get you to a page about Recipes from Bulgaria, but in a quick scan didn't find a recipe for anything pie-like. Some of the recipes are in Bulgarian, though, but in the Roman alphabet.


You might also like to check Traditional Bulgarian Cooking and Bulgarian Rhapsody: The Best of Balkan Cuisine, both of which are in print. Sadly, we have neither on hand to help in answering your question.


Our Practical Encyclopedia of East European Cooking, which is nearly always close at hand, has very appealing recipes for Bulgarian Lamb in Pastry, Fish Baked in a Dough Jacket, and Cherry Strudel, but none of them qualify as pies in our book. Sorry.



Q. I would like to know how to thicken sauces with blood. How to hold the sauces for service, how to fix them if they break? What I can do and not do?


A. Cooking with blood has a long heritage in Europe (especially France), and certainly other areas, as well. Blood sausage or black pudding is basically pig's blood and fat (and often onions), encased in a length of intestine, and is thought to date to ancient Greece. Sanguette, a dish still prepared in southwestern France, is little more than fried coagulated chicken blood.


Blood, or alternatively purÚed liver, adds richness and color to brown sauces. Liver provides substantial thickening, while blood thickens only modestly. And it is finicky. You should add a small amount of your hot sauce to the blood, then incorporate that mixture into the sauce off the heat. Put it back on the burner and heat it gently until it thickens slightly. If you overheat it, it will curdle. Similarly, you cannot reheat it - it will curdle. If you added liver or foie gras, strain the sauce before serving. You can hold such a sauce briefly before serving, but it is not stable enough to keep for long, and once it curdles, all is lost.




1 pound small white beans, rinsed

4 1/2 c. water

1/3 c. molasses

1/4 c. brown sugar

1/4 tsp. cloves

2 tsp. dry mustard

1/4 to 1/3 pound salt pork, sliced

1/2 tsp. salt

1 onion, whole

Combine all ingredients in crock pot except for the onion, bury that in the

middle. Cover and cook on LOW for 13 to 14 hours. Stir occasionally if

possible, if doing overnight, check in the morning and add a little more hot

or boiling water if necessary. I've also stuck cloves into the onion if I didn't have any ground cloves; use 4 to 5 of them. Also, once when I was in a real hurry I put the 1/4 pound of salt pork in whole (the rind can be difficult to cut) and cut it up after. The onion practically disappears after cooking so long, and the aroma of the beans cooking is heavenly. Do not double for 4-quart cooker, but OK to double for 5-quart.




8 oz extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

1 1/2 cups flour

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (or less to taste)

paprika and salt [optional]


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.


In a food processor, combine cheese and butter and pulse until combined. Add flour, salt, and cayenne pepper. Process until a crumbly dough forms. You should be able to press a handful of dough and have it hold together.


Fit a cookie press with a star tip. Fill barrel of press with dough. Pipe dough onto ungreased, shiny (not dark) cookie sheet in long strips, about 1/1/2 inches apart. Cut strips into 2 to 2 1/2 inch lengths and move apart slightly. Bake for

20 minutes. Remove from oven, sprinkle with salt and paprika while warm, if desired. Cool on pan.


Use a spatula to remove. Store in airtight container for up to a week.


Baked cheese straws can be frozen. Thaw at room temperature before serving. Don't overbake them; they shouldn't brown.



(Bellas citronkaka)


200 g (7 oz) butter or margarine

2 dl (good 3/4 cup) sugar

4 eggs

1 lemon

3 1/2 dl (1 1/2 cups) flour

1 tsp baking powder

Heat the oven to 175C/350F. Butter and flour a round baking dish, capacity

about 1 1/2 liters / 6 cups.

Stir fat and sugar white and fluffy. Add the eggs, one by one, and stir

vigorously between each. Scrub the lemon in hot water and grate off the

peel. Squeeze out the juice and mix peel and juice into the batter.

Sift in the flour, mixed with baking powder, and stir to a smooth

batter. Pour it in the baking dish. Bake on a rack in the lower part of the

oven for about 45 minutes. A stick inserted in the middle of the cake should

come out dry.

Allow to cool slightly in the dish before un-molding on a rack to cool

completely. When serving, sift with some powdered sugar, or serve with

whipped cream and fruit. It's a moist, delicious cake.







2 small pkgs. instant vanilla pudding

3 cups of milk

16oz. whipped topping

1 box graham crackers (chocolate or vanilla)

Lay graham crackers to cover bottom of 9 x 13 pan. (Leave 'em whole!) Mix

pudding mixes and milk together to form a stiff pudding. Fold in 8oz. of

whipped topping. Spread 1/3 of pudding/whipped topping mixture on top of

the graham cracker lined pan. Repeat twice with another layer of graham

crackers, followed by 1/3 of the pudding/whipped topping mixture. Finally, "frost" the top with the remaining 8oz. of whipped topping. Here's the trick: refrigerate over night. You can cut up strawberries, or sprinkle graham cracker crumbs, etc. on top.

It's awesome and so simple! It may be made with sugar free pudding and lite

whipped topping.




1/2 pound blue cheese, room temperature

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature

1/4 pound (about 1 cup) finely grated Monterey Jack cheese

1 cup flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper


Preheat oven to 300 degrees.


Combine blue cheese, butter, and Monterey Jack cheese in food processor. Blend until combined. Add flour, baking powder and cayenne and process until dough is smooth.


Fit a cookie press with a star tip. Fill barrel of press with dough. Pipe dough onto ungreased, shiny (not dark) cookie sheet in long strips, about 1/1/2 inches apart. Cut strips into 2 to 2 1/2 inch lengths and move apart slightly. Bake for

20 minutes. Remove from oven, sprinkle with salt and paprika while warm, if desired. Cool on pan.


Remove from pan with a spatula. Store in an airtight container several days. Baked straws can be frozen. Thaw at room temperature before serving.


These straws are softer than the traditional crispy cheddar straws.




1 can tomato soup

1/2 cup water

1 1/2 cups Monterey jack cheese, shredded

3 Tbsp Parmesan cheese

2 tsp oregano

1 tsp sweet basil

1 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp onion powder

2 cups cooked elbow macaroni

Preheat oven to 400F. In a mixing bowl, stir all ingredients together until well blended. Place in a greased baking dish and top with buttered Italian style bread crumbs and 3 green pepper rings. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.



Serves 4

2 teaspoons cooking oil

2 slices ginger, lightly crushed

1 walnut-sized shallot, finely chopped

4 ounces cooked crabmeat, flaked

1 quart chicken stock

1 cup cold water

2 teaspoons soy sauce

8 ounces bok choy, thinly sliced

1 carrot, sliced

1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

1/4 teaspoon white pepper


Place a pot over high heat until hot. Add oil, swirling to coat sides. Add ginger and shallot and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 10 seconds. Add crabmeat; stir-fry for 1 minute.


Add stock, water and soy sauce and bring to a boil. Add bok choy and carrot. Reduce heat to low and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in sesame oil and pepper.




Makes 2 servings

2 8-ounces fresh salmon fillets

6 strips maple-flavored bacon -- 2 strips reserved, cut in 1/2-inch pieces

Beurre blanc:

1 tablespoon butter

1 tablespoon hazelnut syrup

1 tablespoon muscat wine

1/2 cup raspberry jam

1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts


Place salmon fillets on an oven broiler pan and broil about 4 inches from heat for 3 minutes; turn fillets and top each with 2 strips of bacon. Broil an additional 3 to 4 minutes or until bacon is soft-cooked. Remove, set aside, keep warm.


In a nonstick skillet, over medium heat, saute reserved bacon pieces until soft, drain and set aside.


To make beurre blanc: In the same skillet, over medium heat, melt butter, add hazelnut syrup, muscat wine and raspberry jam. Cook mixture several minutes until reduced and soft glaze is formed, stir frequently to avoid sticking. Stir in reserved bacon pieces.


To serve, place half of the beurre blanc on a plate. Place the salmon fillet on the sauce and garnish with chopped hazelnuts. Repeat for remaining fillet.




(Published: Wednesday, May 30, 2001)


Tips for enjoying juicy, sweet fruit as the California harvest peaks:


Fruits you buy fully ripe: berries, cherries, watermelon and citrus. All except berries can be refrigerated without losing flavor.


These fruits will soften and develop more complex flavors (though not more sweetness) after picking: apricots, most melons, figs, peaches, nectarines, plums and persimmons.


Store them at room temperature until ripe as you want. After that, refrigeration will extend their life though it will mute the flavor.


Refrigerate fruits such as apples, ripe pears and ripe mangoes as soon as you buy them with no ill effects.


Stone fruit and pears that are hard will ripen if stored at room temperature in a closed paper bag. Adding an apple to the bag will speed the process.


Fruits can be "cooked" without heat. Sugar draws the water out of the cells, collapsing them and softening the fruit. For this reason, whenever you use sugared fruit in a recipe, either use it immediately after sugaring or be careful to drain off the liquid before adding it.



1 1/4 C Warm water

2 Tbsp. Butter or margarine (not Lite margarine)

1 C Yellow cake mix

2 1/2 C Flour

2 tsp. Dry yeast


Try using different cake mixes for different flavors. This makes a light

uniform loaf of bread. Cycle: White and timer.

I make the dough in my bread machine, pat it out and add raisins and frozen

miniature marshmallows. Roll it up jelly-roll fashion - press it together

well and bake in my long Wilton loaf pan. I have baked this in a 2lb coffee

can but if you're not careful the marshmallows will melt and drip down the

sides of the can so be sure to place an old pan underneath to catch the

drips. (I have gotten busy and had it push a plate off the top of the can

as it rises). The melted marshmallows leave pockets of sweetness (tried

sugar cubes but they make your teeth fall out it's so sweet and some do not

always melt). Last night I made this bread and had some leftover cinnamon

and nut sprinkle which I added to the center before I rolled it up. I used

too many raisins (1 cup) and the weight made the loaf inside the crust fall

on one side - the top bread crust was beautiful. I would add not much

more than 1/2 cup raisins (1 cup is too much!). (I also added 2 tbsp. dried

potato flakes).




In the South, cheese straws are as much a part of wedding receptions as cheap champagne and dyed satin shoes.


And now their influence is expanding to other events, such as cocktail parties, that involve fancy finger food. They're cheap to make, and you can make a whole bunch without too much effort.


Among the primary rules: Use a low protein flour, and do not overbake them. Bake them on a light pan, or they'll burn on the bottom.


Cheese straws, for the newcomers among us, are a pastry dough made from flour, butter, large amounts of grated cheese-preferably extra-sharp cheddar - and a little cayenne. They're usually piped out into ridged sticks before they're baked.

However, there are variations. Some cheese straws are rolled and cut in strips. Sometimes the dough is shaped into a fat roll and cut in circles. In that case, they're called cheese coins, wafers or crackers and they usually involve pecans.


But you'll also find the cheese straw name attached to puff pastry dough that is dusted with grated cheese and twisted. These look a lot like bread sticks.


A nice bowl of tomato soup with a handful of cheese straws? Now that sounds like a match made in heaven.



1 package German Chocolate Cake Mix -- (any brand)

1 cup Chopped Nuts -- (any kind)

12 ounces Chocolate Chips

3/4 cup Butter or Margarine -- melted

2/3 cup Evaporated Milk -- divided

14 ounces Caramel Candy -- unwrapped squares

In a large bowl, mix cake mix (dry), melted butter and 1/3 cup of evaporated

milk. Spread 1/2 batter into lightly greased 9 x 13 inch pan. Bake at 350

degrees F for 6 minutes. Sprinkle chocolate chips and nuts on top of

partially baked batter. Melt caramels with 1/3 cup evaporated milk and

drizzle over chips and nuts. Pour remaining batter on top, and bake for 20

minutes at 350 degrees F. Cut when cool.




By Dianne Jacob, ucook.com contributor


Peter Mayle, author of the current best-seller French Lessons wrote that the French spend as much of their income on their stomachs as the English do on their cars and stereo systems. A visit to Fauchon, a gourmet store in Paris, explains why.


Fauchon is a Paris institution. More than a century old, it occupies a handful of stores at Place Madeleine, a big square that's home to a delectable chocolate shop, a weekly outdoor market of produce, cheeses, and meats, and a competing gourmet store called Hediard.


Our favorite Fauchon shop was the bakery, where we stood at high round tables and ate our breakfast of sinful croissants, cinnamon pastries, brioche and other buttery sweets with our tiny cups of coffee. With each coffee comes a single delicate square of Fauchon's bittersweet chocolate, wrapped with a giant F, proving that no time is too early for chocolate.


On the other side of the store, piles of exquisitely wrapped candies and chocolates await the visitor. The displays are astonishingly beautiful. There are round towers of chocolates wrapped in gold and red foil, interspersed with brightly-colored miniature marzipan fruits. Don't worry about being a gawking tourist. Fauchon staff is used to it. (Although I got the sense that they don't hold special feelings for Americans.)


The next Fauchon store specializes in prepared foods. Its deep storefront window displays traditional French ready-to-eat foods. It is jammed with stuffed snail shells, pÔtÚs, salads, and dozens of other beautifully constructed dishes. Even Parisians stand on the sidewalk, staring, exclaiming and pointing. Inside, you can order several types of pÔtÚs, terrines, meats, produce - everything you'd need for a lavish and elegant dinner party, or a romantic picnic for two.


Our other favorite Fauchon store addressed our desire to bring home "something French." It stocked pre-packaged goods, encased in gleaming dark wood shelves and stacked prettily on marble countertops.


There's a dizzying selection of items made with the Fauchon label, which carries a certain amount of prestige. Decadent cans of truffled pÔtÚ look appealing, but because we were returning to the United States, we couldn't take them home or have them shipped. There are restrictions on importing meat and cheese. We should have bought a tin for a hedonistic picnic in our Paris hotel room.


Also worth perusing is an impressive selection of pre-made sauces, including more than 30 kinds each of mustards (chive, coriander and "four red fruits"), flavored vinegars (cherry, pear, and mint); and flavored oils (Provenšal, curry, and even pizza).


We bought jars of achoiade, a silky paste made of anchovies, olives, and capers, that we used as a dip for crudities. We stocked up on bittersweet chocolate bars to hand out to our chocoholic friends. We snagged a beautiful jar of herbal tea - so pretty that it looked more like potpourri - plus tiny cans of lobster parfait, jars of horseradish and tarragon mustards, a pack of nougat studded with hazelnuts and a jar of black currant jam. The prices were high, but no higher than the designer food items found in gourmet food stores back home.


Then we wandered over to Hediard, a Fauchon competitor with eye-popping displays of prepared foods, produce, coffees, confections and liquor. The atmosphere is a bit more homey and fun. Picture a window designer run amuck. Everything is casually perfect. In a place like this, you don't fondle the produce, because each piece is exceptional. You point and a salesperson selects it for you. We tried to walk past the marzipan display in the huge candy section, but eventually succumbed and purchased three perfect marzipan balls of orange, cocoa and chocolate.

For our next gourmet encounter, we cruised the brightly-lit second floor of the Gallery Lafayette shopping center. It's an entire supermarket floor of food, with every conceivable type of cheese, meat, liquor, prepared food, and many imports. It didn't have the rarified air of Fauchon and Hediard, but oh, the selections!


We bought a picnic lunch there for our train ride to Avignon: sandwiches of smoked salmon and remoulade; and tiny pastel-colored meringue cookies filled with jams and creams.


If you're a food lover, it's easy to spend a whole day at these three shops. We reveled in the beauty of the displays and the huge variety of delicacies. We took in their smell, color, and texture (when permitted allowed to touch something). It's a tremendous sensuous experience. And if you do buy a little something, it's a wonderful treat for your taste buds.




1 Can Hatch Fajita Sauce

2 Lb. Chicken strips, boneless, skinless

2 Cups Sliced Bell Pepper/Red & Green

2 Cups Sliced Onion

2 Tbs. Vegetable Oil

1 Lime

8 Flour Tortillas

Grated Cheese


Sour Cream




Place chicken strips in a glass bowl with 3/4 cup of Hatch Fajita Sauce, marinate for 30-45 minutes. Reserve remainder of Hatch sauce for vegetables. Heat large skillet on HIGH. Add 1 tablespoon oil. Add vegetables and remaining marinade. Stir frequently and cook vegetables until tender. Remove from skillet and keep warm. Rehear skillet, add 1 tablespoon oil, and half of the sliced chicken. Stir frequently and cook until brown and juices are clear. Repeat with remainder of chicken. Squeeze lime juice onto meat while cooking. Place warmed tortilla on plate, add chicken, vegetables. Garnish with grated cheese, tomatoes, sour cream, salsa, as desired.



(Makes 6 servings)


1 ripe golden pineapple

14 1/2-ounce can coconut milk

1 1/2 cups turbinado (coarse, light-brown) sugar or granulated sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Canola or olive oil

Sprigs of fresh mint for garnish


Set up your grill for direct grilling and preheat to high. Brush and oil the grill grate.


Peel the pineapple, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch slices, and core.


Shake the coconut milk well before opening the can. Pour it into a wide, shallow bowl. Place the sugar, cinnamon and cloves in bowl and stir with a fork to mix.


Dip each pineapple slice first in coconut milk, then in the sugar mixture, shaking off the excess between each dipping. Arrange the slices on the grate and grill until nicely browned on both sides, 4 to 6 minutes per side. If a crosshatch of grill marks is desired, rotate each slice on each side 90 degrees after 2 or 3 minutes. Transfer the pineapple slices to plates or a platter for serving; garnish with mint sprigs. Alternatively, serve in bowls, over ice cream.



Makes 21/2 cups


Combine all of the ingredients for this basic rhubarb sauce while rhubarb supplies are bountiful, then freeze. When you have more time and inclination this fall or winter, pull from freezer and prepare the sauce.


4 cups rhubarb pieces, cut into 1-inch pieces

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 tablespoons water


To prepare the mixture for the freezer, combine the rhubarb with the sugar, tossing to coat the pieces. Pack snugly into freezer bags or cartons, leaving 1/2-inch head space; seal and freeze.


When ready to prepare sauce, place the rhubarb/sugar mixture into a pot, add the 2 tablespoons water, and gently heat, covered, until the rhubarb has thawed enough to be stirred and broken apart (if it's clumped). Continue cooking over low heat until the sugar melts and the rhubarb has completely thawed. Cook at a simmer until totally softened. Adjust sugar, adding more to taste.


Let the sauce cool slightly, then puree in blender or food processor.



(And one from Anna)

Serves 6

1 pink grapefruit, peeled and sectioned

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground red hot pepper

8 cups baby spinach leaves, thoroughly washed and dried

2 tablespoons dried currants

2 tablespoons pine nuts

Put grapefruit sections in a large bowl and lightly press them with a fork to extract some juice. Add olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper, and toss together to combine.


Add spinach, currants and pine nuts to bowl. Toss to thoroughly combine. Serve immediately.



Filling: 5 cups(about 3 med.) Sliced, peeled apples

2 Tablespoons Sugar

Topping: 1 Cup Rolled Oats

1/2 Cup Brown Sugar

1/4 Cup Butter

1/4 Cup Flour

1/4 Teaspoon Nutmeg, Ginger Or Cinnamon

Put apples and sugar in a micro bowl and cover and vent. Cook on High for

5 -7 minutes, stirring twice. Assemble topping in a mixing bowl. Cut in

butter until coarse crumbs. Sprinkle over filling. Microwave all uncovered

on high for about 3 minutes.





1 medium eggplant peeled and sliced into 1/2 inch slices

1 tablespoon Spanish Olive Oil

1 teaspoon oregano

1/2 teaspoon salt


2 teaspoons Spanish Olive Oil

1 small spanish onion

2 serrano peppers, chopped

1 small green bell pepper

1 tomato, chopped

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon salt


6- 98%fat free flour tortillas

1/4 cup of your favorite salsa


The Eggplant:

Brush the eggplant with oil, sprinkle with oregano and salt. Let sit 20 minutes at room temperature. Either grill or broil a couple of inches from element for 5-7 minutes on both sides. This can be done ahead.

To make Filling: Heat oil over medium heat. Add the onion, chilies, bell pepper and sautÚ for 2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and sautÚ for another minute. Chop the eggplant and fold into the vegetable mixture. Wrap in tortilla and top with salsa.



Serves 4

4 pounds fresh fava beans, shelled

1/2 pound smoked bacon, diced

2 tablespoons minced scallions (white part only)

1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint

2 teaspoons red wine vinegar

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


In a large pot of boiling water, cook fava beans for 2 minutes. Immediately plunge them into ice water to halt cooking. Slip skin off each bean. Put beans in a large bowl.


In a small skillet over medium heat, cook bacon until brown and crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain. Add bacon to bowl.


Add scallions, mint, vinegar and olive oil to bowl. Toss together. Taste for salt and add freshly ground pepper as desired. Serve at room temperature.



Serves 4

1/2 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns

12 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 3/4-inch pieces

2 tablespoons oyster sauce


1/4 cup chicken broth

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 teaspoon sesame oil

1 teaspoon chili garlic sauce

1 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon cornstarch

To finish:

2 tablespoons cooking oil

6 small dried red chilies

2 tablespoons chopped Sichuan preserved vegetable

2 teaspoons minced garlic

Sliced green onion


Place peppercorns in a small frying pan over medium heat. Cook, shaking pan frequently, until peppercorns darken slightly and smell toasted, 3 to 4 minutes. Whirl in a blender until coarsely ground. Set aside.


Place chicken in a bowl. Add oyster sauce and stir to coat. Let stand for 15 minutes.


Combine sauce ingredients in a bowl.


Place a wok or wide frying pan over high heat until hot. Add oil, swirling to coat sides. Add chilies and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 5 seconds. Add chicken and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add preserved vegetable, garlic and peppercorns and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add sauce and cook, stirring, until it boils and thickens. Place on a serving platter and garnish with green onion.




1 lb. beef sirloin or boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in 1 x 1 1/2 inch strips

1 cup Rosarita Mild Chunky Picante Sauce

1/4 cup Italian Salad dressing

1/4 chopped cilantro (optional)

1 Tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon. Garlic powder

2 Tablespoon Wesson Oil

1 cup each green bell pepper strips and thin onion wedges

1 (16 oz)can rosarita Refried Beans

Flour tortillas, warmed


In shallow bowl, mix together first 6 ingredients. Cover and refrigerate 4-6 hours to marinate. Drain meat. In large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil and saute half of the meat in oil until beginning to lose redness, about 3-4 minutes. Add half of the green pepper and onion and continue cooking 1-2 minutes or until vegetables are crisp tender; remove all from skillet. Repeat with remaining oil, meat, bell peppers and onion. Serve immediately with refried beans and tortillas. makes 4 servings.




What could be more simple? Just cut into desired lengths and freeze -- that's how easy it is to handle rhubarb. If you're planning to use it in a recipe, measure the pieces while frozen; once thawed they tend to "implode," making measurements somewhat inaccurate.


Freezing without sugar: After washing and trimming the ends, dry and cut into desired sizes. Lay the pieces on a cookie sheet and freeze until firm to the touch. Pack snugly into freezer bags or cartons, leaving 1/2-inch head space; seal and freeze.



1 pound New Potatoes -- small- about 12

6 cloves Garlic -- pressed or minced

2 tablespoons Olive Oil

1/2 teaspoon Salt -- (optional)

to taste Black Pepper -- fresh ground

Place all ingredients in a 1 1/2 quart microwaveable container. Stir to coat

potatoes. Cover. Microwave on HIGH for 10 to 15 minutes. Stir once or twice

to re-distribute ingredients. Check for degree of doneness each time.

Arrange least cooked potatoes around edge of the dish. When each potato

feels done when pierced with a knife, this dish is ready.

NOTES : Diabetics can tolerate "Red" potatoes better than any other. It is

said that they don't raise the blood glucose level as drastically as other




4 boneless, skinned chicken breasts halves, pounded thin

3 oz. cream cheese

3/4 c. shredded Cheddar or Monterey Jack Cheese

4 oz. green chilies

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

salt and pepper to taste

1 can cream of mushroom soup

1/2 c. hot enchilada sauce

Combine cream cheese, shredded cheese, chilies, chili powder and salt and

pepper. Place a generous dollop on each flattened chicken breast, then roll

up. Place chicken rolls in the crock pot, seam side down. Top chicken

breast rolls with remaining cheese mixture, soup, and enchilada sauce.

Cover and cook on Low for 6 to 7 hours. Serves 4




1 medium-size onion, chopped fine

2 T. chopped parsley (Italian)

2 T. chopped Cilantro

3 T. fresh lemon juice

2 T. olive oil

2 T. Tequila

1 t. salt

1-1/2 T. ground cumin, ground ginger, Ancho chili powder, coriander and ground

white pepper

1 lemon cut in wedges for garnish

For the marinade, whisk together all the ingredients except the game hens and lemons in a large bowl.


Rinse, drain and halve the hens lengthwise; place in the bowl, coating thoroughly with marinade. Cover and refrigerate 1 to 8 hours (the longer, the better), turning occasionally.


Prepare the grill, using the three-tier method. When ready to cook, oil the grill rack. Remove the hens from the marinade and arrange skin-side down on the rack over the hottest section of the grill; cook until the skin starts to brown, about 5 minutes to 7 minutes, then move the pieces back to the center section of the grill to finish cooking. The total cooking time will be about 25 - 35 minutes. When ready, the hens will be crisp and golden-brown outside and the juices will run clean when the meat is pierced. Serve immediately with lemon wedges.


Three-Tier Grilling Method: (for people using coals, pile 2/3 of the coals on one side of the grill and the remaining 1/3 in the center. Leave a small portion of the grill free of coals. Three-tier grilling gives you a super hot heat source for searing, a moderately hot heat source for cooking and an area to place the food if it starts to burn. You control the heat by moving the food from one area to the other.



2 C. whipping cream

2 C. whole milk

2 t. salt

12 t. sugar

6 T. butter

6 T. flour

16 oz. frozen , or 4 cans white corn, drained.

Mix all of the ingredients, stirring the flour into the mixture well, before

you begin to heat. Heat, stirring gently. Bring to a very gentle simmer. Simmer, and stir until thickened. A little additional flour will make it thicker. Serves 8





Watermelon vinaigrette:

1 small shallot, halved

1/3 cup seedless watermelon cubes

5 tablespoons rice vinegar

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1/3 cup vegetable oil

Salt and pepper to taste


Ham roll-ups:

1 head radicchio, separated into leaves

11/2 pounds honey ham, thinly sliced

3 cups seedless watermelon cubes, cut 1/2-inch

1 small red onion, thinly sliced, separated into rings


To make vinaigrette: In food processor, finely chop shallot; add watermelon cubes, vinegar and lime juice, and process until pureed. With motor running, slowly drizzle in oil until mixture is combined. (If dressing is too thick, add a little more vinegar.)


Taste. Add salt and pepper as needed. Set aside.


To make roll-ups: Line serving platter with radicchio leaves. Roll ham slices into cones and arrange around edge of platter. Place watermelon cubes in center and top with red onion rings. Drizzle salad and ham rolls with enough dressing to moisten.



2 c. sugar

2/3 c. butter

3 eggs

1/8 tsp. salt

2 tsp. baking powder

2 1/2 c. flour

1 c. milk

1 tsp. vanilla

1 c. hickory nuts, chopped

Penuche Frosting

1/2 c. butter

1 c. packed brown sugar

1/4 c. milk

2 c. confectioners' sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

Cream together sugar and butter for cake, add eggs, beat on medium speed

of mixer for 2 minutes. Mix dry ingredients alternately with milk. Mix

well, stir in vanilla and nuts. Pour into greased and floured 13 x 9 inch

pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 45 to 50 minutes (cake may be baked in 8 inch

layer pans), cool. Make frosting by melting butter in a medium saucepan.

Add brown sugar, boil 2 minutes, add milk bring boil. Remove from heat;

cool to lukewarm. Beat in sugar and vanilla. (May add chopped hickory

nuts, 1/2 cup of desired.) Frost cake. 16 servings.





(Published: Wednesday, May 30, 2001)


Quick Fix debuts today to help launch Taste, the new name of The Bee's Food section. Quick Fix is here to provide harried cooks with easy, time-saving answers to workday dining in today's short-order, 20-minute-menu world.


With so much attention being paid to comfort foods and retro menus, it is surprising the word "hash" is not being pronounced more often.


Maybe it's because so many people disdain leftovers these days, and hash is truly memorable only when made from leftovers.


The trinity of corned beef hash, roast beef hash and chicken hash once were equally popular in tony restaurants such as 21 in New York and Chasen's in Los Angeles, as well as in family restaurants across Middle America.


The classic formula, recorded by James Beard, is three parts cooked and cubed beef, two parts cooked diced potato and one part chopped onion. Optional ingredients might include chopped parsley, chopped celery and a dash or two of red pepper.


Restaurant diners of yesteryear might have begun their meal with chilled tomato juice. Update that to a prepared fresh tomato soup or gazpacho from your favorite deli. Also, keep hash in mind for a weekend brunch main course.




Tomato soup or gazpacho


Roast beef hash


Sauteed green beans




Iced tea


Time-saving tips


Cook extra potatoes a day or two ahead.


If purchasing cooked roast beef, ask the butcher to cut a slice at least 3/4-inch-thick.

To really speed things up, chop the ingredients in the morning; wrap and store them separately.


For best results with this recipe, use a cast-iron skillet to obtain a crispy crust on your hash. (A skillet with a 7-inch diameter is perfect for this amount of hash.)


Adapted from a recipe from the late James Beard. Beard favored Heinz chili sauce with this.



Serves up to 8

1 leek, trimmed to 1/4 inch of green part

1 pineapple, peeled and quartered lengthwise

1 Napa cabbage (about 1 pound), cored

1/2 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch matchsticks

1/4 cup olive oil

1 teaspoon salt


Cut leek in half lengthwise and rinse in a bowl of water, lifting pieces up and down to make sure all grit is removed. Rinse under running water. Drain on paper towels and pat dry. Cut leek into 1 1/2-inch matchsticks. Put them in a large bowl.


Cut woody core from each quarter of pineapple and discard. Cut each quarter into matchsticks. Add to bowl.


Cut cabbage into thirds crosswise. Finely dice. Add to bowl.


Add carrots, olive oil and salt to bowl. Toss and serve at room temperature. The salad will keep in a tightly covered container in refrigerator for up to 3 days.






Special to the Mercury News


Making maximum use of the pantry is the mantra of cooking to beat the clock. One of my favorite pantry items is roasted red bell peppers in a jar.


Don't get me wrong: I love to roast fresh red bell peppers in summer on the grill, then peel and seed them for salads, pastas or as part of an antipasto platter. But I don't always have the time. In addition, out-of-season fresh red bell peppers can be expensive. That's where the convenience of peppers in a jar comes in.


Red bell peppers are also called sweet peppers to distinguish them from hot chile peppers. They're actually green bell peppers that have stayed on the vine longer. As a result, they are sweeter and contain more vitamin C and much more A.


Pimientos are heart-shaped sweet red peppers usually from Spain. They have a milder flavor and softer texture than domestic red bells, so I tend to use them less often. But they're frequently available already chopped or sliced. Spain also produces the ultimate sweet red pepper, the piquillo. Rich with a slightly smoky flavor and silky texture, the piquillo is pricey. So let it shine by itself rather than mucking it up with too many seasonings or other ingredients.


Sweet red peppers from the jar can be used in a variety of dishes.


Add them to pasta with some chick peas, feta, black olives and Italian parsley. Use them in bean salads -- perhaps cannellini beans with new potatoes, shrimp and fresh sage. Corn is a natural partner of sweet peppers in hot or cold dishes. Sweet peppers make a good sandwich accompaniment too, as in the classic Provenal pan bagna. For this sandwich, slather the inside of cut French bread with garlicky olive oil, then layer with tuna, anchovies, capers, thinly sliced red onion, tomatoes, peppers and some basil or arugula leaves. Wrap in foil, weight down and refrigerate several hours or overnight.


Use sweet red peppers for quick sauces or salsas on grilled meats, poultry, fish or on tacos.


Piperade is a Basque sautÚ of peppers, onions, tomatoes, garlic, olive oil and herbs that can be put atop fish or chicken. But piperade can also mean an egg dish made with the above ingredients. I most often make it as a flat omelet or frittata, but here I've made it as more of an egg scramble. Serve it with or on thick slices of toasted country bread.



Serves 4

2 ripe mangoes

1/2 red onion

3 bunches cilantro, with 1 tablespoon minced and 1 tablespoon chopped

5-6 tablespoons lemon-infused olive oil

3 English cucumbers


2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar


1 pound clean kegani meat (approximately 2-3 whole crabs, cooked in court-

bouillon and cleaned) or 1 pound of Dungeness crab meat, frozen if out

of season (about 2 crabs)

Extra-virgin olive oil



For mango chutney: Peel and dice mangoes. Mince red onion and add to mangoes. Add 1 tablespoon minced cilantro to mixture. Season with 2-3 tablespoons lemon-infused olive oil. Set mixture aside.


Peel cucumbers. Reserve half of one cucumber. Slice it into very thin circles and set aside.


For cucumber water: Puree remaining 2 1/2 cucumbers with 2 bunches of cilantro, 1 tablespoon salt and rice wine vinegar in blender. Pour into a cloth napkin or cheese cloth suspended above a bowl. All liquid will drain through napkin (it should take liquid a few hours to drain). Discard pulp.


Pour cucumber water on bottom of four bowls. Place cucumber slices on bottom of bowls. Add mango chutney.


Toss crab meat with 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro, 3 tablespoons lemon-infused olive oil and salt to taste. Set on top of mango chutney. Toss microgreens in regular olive oil until lightly coated and place on top of crab.



1 cup white vinegar

1 cup firmly packed brown sugar

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper

1 cup cooking apple -- peeled, cored, chopped

1/2 cup thinly sliced sweet onion

1/2 cup raisins

1/4 lemon -- thinly sliced

1 1/2 cups kiwi fruit -- peeled and chopped

Combine first 5 ingredients in a large saucepan; cook over low heat until

mixture is reduced to 1 cup. Add apple and next 3 ingredients; cook 10

minutes. Stir in kiwifruit; bring to a boil. Remove from heat; cool. Cover

and chill. Serve with poultry, pork, or ham. Yield: 2 1/2 cups (about 10



Note: To serve as an appetizer, process 3/4 cup of the chutney in container

of an electric blender or food processor; pour over 8 oz softened cream

cheese, and serve with crackers.



6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened at room temperature

1 cup sugar

2 large eggs

2 large egg yolks

2/3 cup fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest


In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer, about 2 minutes. Slowly add eggs and yolks. Beat 1 minute. Mix in lemon juice.


Cook mixture in a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan over low heat until it looks smooth. Increase heat to medium and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens, about 15 minutes. Don't let it boil.


Remove curd from heat, stir in lemon zest. Transfer curd to bowl. It will keep in refrigerator for a week, in freezer for 2 months.




1 cup white wine

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 clove garlic -- crushed

2 bay leaves

6 green peppercorns -- crushed

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme

2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

4 skinless boneless chicken breast halves


Combine all ingredients except chicken. Pour the mixture over the chicken

and let marinate for 1 hour.


Prepare the broiler or grill. Cook the chicken for 5 minutes, brush with the

marinade, the turn and brush other side with the marinade. Continue to cook

until done. Yield: 4 servings.



1/2 cup Olive Oil

1/2 cup Tequila -- good quality

1/4 cup Lime Juice

1 tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce

1 clove Garlic -- minced

1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper -- freshly ground

Combine marinade ingredients in a medium sized bowl. Place steaks into a

large zip baggie and pour marinade into baggie with meat. Seal, mark and


When you are ready to cook your steaks, thaw them overnight in your

refrigerator. Remove steaks from marinade and cook as desired.

(I recommend grilling on a barbecue or broiling in an oven) and throw away

marinade. Do NOT save or reuse marinade.



1 cup packed brown sugar

6 eggs, beaten

1/2 cup butter

1-1/2 cups milk

2 tablespoons corn syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla

12 slices sandwich bread

1/4 teaspoon salt

Combine sugar, butter, and corn syrup in a small saucepan, cook over medium heat until thickened, stirring constantly. Pour syrup mixture into a 13" x 9" baking dish. Place 6 slices of bread on top of syrup mixture. Top with remaining 6 slices of bread. Combine eggs, milk, vanilla, and salt, stirring until well blended. Pour egg mixture evenly over bread slices. Cover and chill 8 hours or overnight. Bake uncovered at 350░ for 40-45 minutes or until lightly browned. Serves 6.



1 1/2 pounds of ground beef

1 egg

1 1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1/4 cup fine dried bread crumbs

1/3 cup milk

1/4 cup minced onions

1 tablespoon butter or margarine

1 teaspoon flour

1/2 cup V-8 juice (try the hot and spicy one for extra zip)

1 tablespoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon A-1 steak sauce

1 can cream of celery soup (any cream of vegetable soup will do)

1/2 cup sour cream

Hot cooked noodles (I use wide egg noodles but any kind will work)

Lightly mix first 6 ingredients and 2 tablespoons onion. Shape into 8

patties. Brown on both sides in butter in skillet. Remove patties and pour

off all but 1 teaspoon fat. Blend flour in skillet. Add remaining onion,

V-8 juice, paprika, and A-1 sauce. Bring to a boil and put patties back in

skillet. Cover and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove patties and keep

warm. Blend soup and sour cream into mixture in skillet and heat while

stirring. Place patties over hot cooked noodles and pour sauce over all.

Like I said, the sauce is so good over fresh veggies.



Makes approximately 4 dozen



31/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon granulated sugar

1 cup butter, cut into small pieces (2 sticks)

2 tablespoons dark sesame oil

1/2 cup ice water



1 12-ounce package fresh pork sausage

1/2 cup diced green onion

1/2 cup diced bell pepper

1/2 cup dried cherries, chopped

1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 cup sweet, hot Asian chili sauce


1 egg, lightly beaten

1 tablespoon milk

1/4 cup sesame seeds


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.


To make crust: Mix flour, salt and sugar together in a medium bowl. Cut in butter until crumbly; stir in sesame oil and water until dough forms a ball. Roll out on a floured board to about 1/8-inch thick and, using a 31/2-inch cookie cutter, cut dough into rounds. Re-roll dough as needed.


To make filling: Crumble sausage into a 10-inch skillet; stir-fry over medium-high heat until pink is gone. Drain off any excess fat. Remove from heat and stir in green onions, bell pepper, cherries, ginger, soy sauce and chili sauce.


Place a heaping tablespoon of filling in the bottom half of each round of dough. Moisten edges of dough and fold dough over to make a crescent shape. Seal edges with the tines of a fork.


Mix the egg and milk together and brush each pasty with the mixture. Sprinkle sesame seeds on top of the pasties. Place on ungreased cookie sheets and bake for 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven.



Piperade is a Basque sautÚ of peppers, onions, tomatoes, garlic, olive oil and herbs that can be put atop fish or chicken. But piperade can also mean an egg dish made with the above ingredients. I most often make it as a flat omelet or frittata, but here I've made it as more of an egg scramble. Serve it with or on thick slices of toasted country bread.


Serves 4

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium to large onion

2 cloves garlic

One 7-ounce jar roasted red bell peppers

One 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes

4 ounces lean boiled or baked ham

1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon herbes de Provence

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 or 5 large sprigs parsley, preferably flat leaf, enough for 2 to 3 tablespoons when chopped

8 eggs


Put the oil in a 12-inch non-stick skillet over medium heat. Peel and cut onion in sixths. Peel garlic. Put both in a food processor and pulse until chopped, or chop by hand. Add to skillet and increase heat to medium high.


Drain bell peppers from jar. Chop coarsely. Drain tomatoes. Coarsely chop ham. Add peppers, tomatoes, ham, herbes de Provence and salt and pepper to taste to skillet. Stir well and cook until almost all moisture has evaporated, 5 to 7 minutes. Turn heat down to medium.


Meanwhile, chop parsley. Beat eggs with salt and pepper. Add eggs to skillet and stir until they begin to thicken. Stir in parsley. Serve from pan.



Piperade is a Basque sautÚ of peppers, onions, tomatoes, garlic, olive oil and herbs that can be put atop fish or chicken. But piperade can also mean an egg dish made with the above ingredients. I most often make it as a flat omelet or frittata, but here I've made it as more of an egg scramble. Serve it with or on thick slices of toasted country bread.


Serves 4

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium to large onion

2 cloves garlic

One 7-ounce jar roasted red bell peppers

One 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes

4 ounces lean boiled or baked ham

1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon herbes de Provence

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 or 5 large sprigs parsley, preferably flat leaf, enough for 2 to 3 tablespoons when chopped

8 eggs


Put the oil in a 12-inch non-stick skillet over medium heat. Peel and cut onion in sixths. Peel garlic. Put both in a food processor and pulse until chopped, or chop by hand. Add to skillet and increase heat to medium high.


Drain bell peppers from jar. Chop coarsely. Drain tomatoes. Coarsely chop ham. Add peppers, tomatoes, ham, herbes de Provence and salt and pepper to taste to skillet. Stir well and cook until almost all moisture has evaporated, 5 to 7 minutes. Turn heat down to medium.


Meanwhile, chop parsley. Beat eggs with salt and pepper. Add eggs to skillet and stir until they begin to thicken. Stir in parsley. Serve from pan.






Mix ingredients together and press into loaf pan. Chill overnight. Cut

into squares. Roll in flour and brown in hot oil on both sides. Place in

one layer in baking pan.

2 pounds ground beef

1 cup cracker crumbs

1 cup milk

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 cup chopped onions

Mix together soup and water. Pour over top.

1 can mushroom soup

1 soup can water

Bake at 300 degrees for 1 1/2 hours.



Serves 6

2 yellow onions

1/2 pound butter


2 pounds porcini mushrooms (or substitute button mushrooms)

1 quart chicken stock

1/2 cup cream

12 pieces hokkigai (or substitute 12 prawns)

White pepper


Thinly slice yellow onions. Melt butter and add onions to butter over low heat. Add a pinch of salt. Cook onions until translucent.


Slice porcini mushrooms, reserving four of the nicest, firmest pieces for garnish. Once onions are tender, add mushrooms and cook until soft. Add chicken stock and simmer for 30 minutes. Add cream and simmer for another 10 minutes.


Puree mixture in blender and pass it through a chinois or a very fine sieve. Bring soup to boil. Add salt and white pepper to taste. Julienne hokkigai, sautÚ and set aside. Shave porcini pieces.


Pour soup into bowls. Lay shaved porcinis in soup and place hokkigai on top.




about 2 lbs pork loin, bite size pieces OR use ribs

10 3/4 oz can Tomato Soup

1/2-3/4 cup Brown Sugar

1 large chopped Red Delicious Apple

Cooked Rice

Spray large skillet with Pam, heat on med-high. Brown pork pieces. Add tomato soup, mix well. Add brown sugar to desired sweetness and mix well. Reduce heat, cover & simmer while you chop up the apple. Add apple pieces, stir well, cover again & simmer 20-30 minutes. Serve over Rice with your choice of vegetable.




3 T Water

3 T Lime Juice

1 t. Olive Oil

2 large cloves Garlic, minced

1 T. Ground Cumin

1/4 t Dried Oregano, crushed

10 oz. Portabella Mushrooms, thinly sliced

1 medium Red, Green or Yellow Sweet Pepper, cut into thin strips

4 medium Green Onions, cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces

6 -7 inch 98% fat free Flour Tortillas

6 each Lime Wedges optional

Fat Free cheese optional

Fat Free sour cream optional


For marinade, in a large container combine water, lime juice, oil, garlic, cumin, and oregano. Add mushrooms, pepper strips, and green onions; turn bag to coat. Marinate at room temperature for 15 to 30 minutes. Meanwhile, wrap tortillas in foil. Heat in a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes to soften. For filling, in a large nonstick skillet cook un-drained vegetables over medium-high heat about 5 minutes or until peppers are tender and most of the liquid has evaporated, stirring occasionally. To serve, spoon mushroom filling onto tortillas; roll up. If desired, serve with lime wedges. YIELD: 6 Portions




2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 tablespoon butter

1 small onion, finely chopped

1 teaspoon paprika, Hungarian hot preferred

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1 large potato, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, cooked

2 cups cooked roast beef, fat trimmed, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

4 eggs, poached, optional


Heat oil and butter in medium skillet until butter is melted. Add onions; cook, stirring occasionally until soft, about 4 minutes. Stir in paprika, salt and pepper; cook 1 minute. Stir in potatoes and meat. Cook, undisturbed, over medium heat until crust has formed, about 10 minutes. Turn hash; cook until lightly browned, 5 minutes.


Serve with poached eggs, if desired.





1 1/2 pounds thin or medium asparagus

2 tbsp peanut oil

2 medium garlic cloves, minced

2 tbsp smooth peanut butter

1 1/2 tsp soy sauce

1 1/2 tsp lemon juice

1/4 tsp hot red pepper flakes

2 to 3 tbsp water


Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Snap off tough woody ends from each speark. Arrange asparagus on a large baking sheet. Mix peanut oil with garlic, drizzle over spears and toss gently with your hands to coat each one from end to end. Spread spears out in a single layer over baking sheet.


Place baking sheet in oven. Roast, shaking pan once or twice to turn spears, until asparagus is lightly browned, 12 to 15 minutes.


Combine peanut butter, soy sauce, lemon juice, and pepper flakes in a small bowl. Use a rubber spatula to work the ingredients together until well-combined. Add enough water to make the mixture thin enough to pour smoothly. Adjust the seasonings. Transfer the roasted asparagus to a large platter. Drizzle the peanut sauce over the spears and serve immediately.



1 can condensed onion soup (I often use dry soup with equivalent water)

1 1/2 pounds ground beef

1/2 cup fine dry bread crumbs

1 egg, beaten

1/4 teaspoon salt

dash of pepper

1 tablespoon flour

1/4 cup ketchup

1/4 cup water

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon dry mustard

My addition: mushrooms

Combine 1/3 cup soup with beef, crumbs, egg, salt & pepper. Shape into six

patties. Brown in skillet, pour off excess fat and set patties aside.

Gradually blend remaining soup into flour until smooth. Add to skillet with

remaining ingredients, stirring to loosen brown bits. Return patties to

skillet. Cover and cook over low heat for 20 minutes.



1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon honey

2 teaspoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 teaspoons ginger -- freshly grated

2 1/2 pounds salmon fillet -- about 1" thick

In a small saute pan over medium heat, melt the brown sugar with the honey

and butter. Remove from the heat and whisk in the mustard, soy sauce, olive

oil, and ginger. Allow to cool.

Place the salmon, skin side down, on a large sheet of aluminum foil. Trim

the foil to leave a border 1/2 inch around the edge of the salmon. Coat the

flesh of the salmon with the brown sugar mixture.

Grill the salmon indirectly over medium heat until the edges begin to brown

and the inside is opaque, 25 to 30 minutes. The internal temperature should

be about 125 degrees F. Turn off the heat and serve fish directly from the

grill or, using a large baking sheet, carefully transfer the salmon with the

foil to a cutting board. Cut the salmon crosswise into 8 pieces, but do not

cut through the skin. Slide a spatula between the skin and flesh and remove

the salmon pieces to a serving platter or individual plates. Serve

immediately. Yield: 8 servings.







3/4 cup margarine

1/3 cup sugar

2 large eggs

6 tablespoons orange marmalade

2 cups self rising flour

1/2 cup white raisins or golden raisins

Cream margarine until soft and add sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well between each addition. Mix in marmalade, raisins and flour.

Turn into greased and bottom-lined deep 7 inch cake pan. Level the surface, and bake at 350 for 1 - 1 1/2 hours or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 15 minutes and turn out onto rack to cool completely.



By Marlene Parrish


More than any other reason, people say they don't like to cook for just themselves because after all the work, their meals just don't taste very exciting. The food is boring, bland and blah.


If this sounds familiar, it may not have a thing to do with cooking, but with seasoning. You may not use enough pepper and salt. Or any other condiment for that matter. Nothing will drab down a dish faster than lack of seasoning.


Think along, here. Take a simple, common chicken breast. Zap it in the microwave, broil it, or sautÚ it in a little butter in a pan. You could improve the flavor of this plain presentation by dressing it with any of the following.


Simple salt and pepper


Peppercorns, freshly ground, work miracles of flavor. If you've always used pre-ground black pepper in a shaker, put it on hold for a week. In its place, buy a jar of whole black peppercorns. Hopefully, you have a pepper grinder. If not, invest a few bucks in a small one. Don't even think about the ridiculous bazookas you see in restaurants. Grind fresh pepper over salads, eggs, vegetables, even over sweetened strawberries.


Regular "when-it-rains-it-pours" table salt is fine in cooked foods. But a pinch of kosher salt spinkled directly onto your food at the table adds crunch and an extra zap of flavor. Keep this coarse salt in an open container such as a teacup, and leave it on the table or beside the range where you can pinch it anytime. There are all kinds of salt blends, too. And please, remember that a little bit of salt won't kill you, but you can die of boredom without it.


Pepper and Salt Shakes. There must be two dozen kinds of dry seasoning shakes in the spice racks at the supermarket. The best part of these shakes is that they are pre-blended for balance of flavor, and you don't have any guesswork. They combine spices and seasonings with some pepper and salt. If you buy one every time you shop, it will be only a few weeks before you have a stash to really pep up your dishes.


Seasoning salts such as Grill-Mates steak seasoning can be patted onto the surface of any meat before you cook it. The spice blend gives chicken, pork, lamb and beef that right-off-the-grill flavor. Szechuan-style pepper blend elevates almost everything it touches. It's good on grilled food and super on fish or shrimp in a sautÚ. Stir-frys come alive. And it even adds a new dimension to scrambled eggs, pizza and hamburgers.


Refrigerator Basics


Take a look at the shelves of your refrigerator door. Scary, no?


Two-year-old crystallized jams and gooky jars should be tossed out. Wipe off the shelf and start adding. Get some chutneys, those sweet and pungent jams from India that lend an exotic touch and a punch of flavor to chicken and pork.


Add salsas, bitey with chile peppers and garlic, to add a kick of flavor. Pick up some pickles and relishes, or chowchow - a mustard pickle often used with curry - and piccalilli, a form of chutney. Round up some horseradish and chili sauce, as well as a couple mustards (especially ones you've never tried), and a couple kinds of olives.


Next, the produce drawer. A squeeze of lemon, a spritz of lime. Gingerroot and garlic to chop and crush. Herbs are a no-brainer.


Stocking the pantry


Now take a good look at what passes for your pantry shelf. Stock it with small bottles of flavored cooking oils and at least three kinds of vinegar. Smoked salted almonds and dry roasted peanuts make good appetizers or toppings.


When you feel like making a peppy side-dish for yourself, make Chef Chris Schlesinger's Nectarine-Red Onion Relish. The flavor is definitely South American. It packs a wallop, but it's mild enough for those folks who don't really like things hot-hot. Serve it with any grill meats, and it's also good as an accompaniment to roasted or grilled vegetables.


That chicken breast will never taste better.



1/2 half head lettuce, shredded

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup chopped celery

1/2 cup chopped green/red/yellow or combination peppers

1-8oz can English peas, drained

1 teaspoon sugar

8-oz grated cheese( whatever kind you like)

8 slices fried bacon(or bacon bits)

1 cup mayonnaise or ranch dressing(I like the ranch dressing best)

In medium bowl put lettuce. Mix onion, pepper and celery; put on top of

lettuce. Add English peas as next layer. Put mayonnaise on top to make a

1/4 inch layer. Sprinkle sugar on top(do not put sugar if using ranch

dressing) Add cheese and bacon on top. Cover tightly and refrigerate for

24 hours. Makes about 10-12 servings.



1 pound Boneless Chicken -- cut in 2" pieces

1 pound Beef, trimmed -- cut in 2" pieces

1 package Ranch Salad Dressing Mix -- powdered

1/2 cup Vegetable Oil

1/2 cup Miracle Whip light

You will need two medium sized bowls. Divide powdered salad dressing mix

between the two bowls, in equal portions. Next, add the vegetable oil to one bowl, and mix well. Add the miracle whip to the second bowl, and mix well. Rinse chicken with cold water, and pat dry with paper towels. Place chicken into the bowl containing the miracle whip mixture, and stir to coat chicken pieces. Cover this bowl, and place in refrigerator for one hour. Place beef pieces into the bowl containing the vegetable oil mixture, and stir to coat beef pieces. Cover and place in refrigerator for one hour. While your meat and poultry are marinating, soak 24 large wooden skewers in a shallow pan of cold water. By soaking the wooden skewers, you will discourage them from burning through while your meat is cooking. When your hour is over, place chicken onto 12 of the skewers, 3 or 4 pieces per skewer, and place onto a platter or baking sheet. Set aside. Now, place beef onto the other 12 skewers, and place onto a separate platter or baking

sheet. Immediately dispose of remaining marinade from each bowl- do not reuse. Broil shish-ka-bots on your outdoor grill, until meat is cooked through and tender. Copyright 2000, Kaylin Cherry/Real Food for Real People All Rights

Reserved. Note: I prefer to use 'Uncle Dan's Original Southern' salad dressing mix to make this recipe, but you may use any brand you like if you cannot find this brand in your local grocery store.



Makes about 2 cups

11/2 cups frozen fruit, broken into chunks (see vacuum-packing directions)

3/4 cup fruit juice or milk

1/2 cup plain or flavored yogurt


Combine fruit, juice and yogurt in a blender. Blend until smooth. Serve immediately.


How to vacuum-package fresh fruit for smoothies:


Line a baking sheet or pan that fits in the freezer with wax paper or plastic wrap.


Cut slices of bananas, peaches, nectarines, mangoes or other fruit 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. For easier blending, do not freeze fruits in pieces larger than 1-inch cubes.


Arrange sliced fruits or whole berries in a single layer. Or, stack fruit in multiple layers separated by wax paper or plastic wrap. Cover top layer with plastic wrap. Freeze fruit until solid.


For individual smoothie servings, place about 11/2 cups (about 8 ounces) frozen fruits into a quart-size Food Saver bag.


Label, vacuum-package according to manufacturer's instructions (or wrap tightly, using freezer-wrap materials). (Note: During vacuum-packaging, gently press fruit flat in bag for easier stacking and freezer storage.) Store in freezer for up to 2 years.




1 750-ml bottle light, dry, red or rose wine

1 cup sugar

1 3-inch piece vanilla bean

2 pints strawberries, washed and hulled

1 1/2 cups vanilla ice cream

6 almond or sugar wafer cookies


Combine the wine and sugar in a large bowl and whisk well to dissolve. Split the vanilla bean in half and scrape the seeds int9o the wine mixture. Add the bean. Leave small strawberries whole; cut large berries into pieces of similar size. Add them to the wine combination and let them macerate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, or overnight.

To serve, ladle the berries and wine into bowls. Top each with a 1/4 cup scoop of ice cream and a cookie.



(Published: Wednesday, May 30, 2001)


1 -- Thaw uncooked meat in the refrigerator. Never thaw meat at room temperature.


2 -- If you marinate your meat, do this in the refrigerator. Discard the marinade after use because it contains raw juices, which may harbor bacteria. If you want to use the marinade as a dip or sauce, reserve a portion before adding raw food.


3 -- If you're using the grill for the first time since last year, wash it. Contrary to popular belief, a grease-encrusted grill doesn't add flavor to the food.


4 -- Use cooking spray or oil on your grill to preventing sticking. Do not apply cooking spray to a lit grill.


5 -- Trim excess fat off steaks and poultry. Dripping fat can cause grill flare-ups.


6 -- Do not add sugary or oily sauces or marinades to foods on the grill. This causes burning.


7 -- Use the proper tools when grilling. Using tongs to flip the food is recommended as piercing the food can cause juices to drip and burn.


8 -- The secret to good barbecuing is turning the food only once. Lift the edge of the food; if the lines from the cooking grate start to turn black, it's time to turn.


9 -- Meat and poultry on a grill often brown very fast on the outside. Use a meat thermometer to be sure the food has reached a safe internal temperature. Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the food away from bone, fat or gristle. Hamburgers should be cooked to 160 degrees and poultry 180.


10 -- When taking food off the grill, do not put cooked items on the same platter that held the raw meat.




6 lasagna noodles

2 slsightly beaten egg whites

1 1/2 cups cottage cheese, drained

1/8 tsp pepper

1 10-oz pkg frozen chopped broccoli or 1 pkg French cut green beans, drained

4 green onions, sliced

1/4 cup water

1 cup skim milk

4 tsp cornstarch

1/2 tsp dried dill weed

dash pepper

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

no-stickum spray coating

12 cup grated Parmesan cheese


Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions. Drain. Rinse with cold water. Drain again, set aside.


Stir together egg whites, cottage cheese and pepper. Set aside. Cook broccoli or green beans according to package directions. Drain, set aside.


For sauce, in a medium saucepan, cook green onions in water, covered, about 3 minutes or until tender. Combine skim milk, cornstarch, dill weed and pepper. Add all at once to green onion mixture. Cook and stir until bubbly. Cook and stir for 1 minute more. Gradually add mozzarella cheese, stirring until melted. Stir in broccoli or green beans.


Spray a 10 x 6 inch baking dish with no-stickum. Place 2 of the noodles in the dish (cut the noodles, if necessary, to fit). Spread 1/3 of the cottage cheese

mixture over noodles. Top with 1/3 of the of the sauce, then sprinkle with 1/3 of the Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers two more times, cover with foil. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove foil. Bake for 5 to 10 minutes more or until heated through. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.




Makes about 3 dozen

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

2/3 cups unsweetened cocoa

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup (two sticks) softened butter or margarine

3/4 cup granulated sugar

2/3 cup packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 teaspoons Kahl˙a

2 eggs

2 cups (about 12 ounces) white chocolate chips

1 cup macadamia nuts


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in medium bowl and set aside. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, vanilla and Kahl˙a in a large mixing bowl until creamy. Beat in eggs. Gradually add dry ingredients. Stir in white chocolate chips and macadamia nuts.


Drop tablespoonfuls of dough onto an ungreased baking sheet.


Bake for 10 minutes (or until cookies' centers are set). Cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.



1 14 ounce can sliced peaches

1 Tbs pure vanilla extract

11/2 cup sugar

1 cup whole milk

1 10 ounce can sweetened condensed milk

1 8 ounce bar Philadelphia cream cheese

2 12 ounce cans evaporated milk

6 eggs


In a cake pan with 4 inch sides add 1/2 cup of sugar and over high heat

caramelize sugar until dark amber in color, tilting pan to cover bottom and 1 inch up the side of the pan (be very careful and use a heavy oven mitt), let cool at room temperature.

In a blender divide ingredients (except vanilla), blend until smooth. Pour in mixture, add vanilla, stir. Cover tightly with aluminum foil, place in a covered ban marie (water bath) over low heat for 1 hour. Adjust heat so that the water just boils slowly. Check water and add hot water as necessary. It is done when a dry knife inserted comes out clean. Garnish with sliced peach slices.

For a less rich variation omit cream cheese and add two eggs.

Note....place ban marie on stove; add the cake pan (this avoids the balancing

act), then fill with water to come up two thirds of the way up the side of the pan.

You can do this in a large turkey roasting pan over two burners.



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