Friday, April 30, 2010

Coffee Toffee Cheesecake

This recipe is from the April/May 2010 Taste of home Magazine.
Coffee Toffee Cheesecake Recipe

2-1/2 cups chocolate wafer crumbs

1/2 cup butter, melted

2 tablespoons sugar


1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips

1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

4 teaspoons instant coffee granules

3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened

1-1/3 cups sugar

1-1/2 cups (12 ounces) sour cream

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1/8 teaspoon salt

3 eggs, lightly beaten

4 Heath candy bars (1.4 ounces each), chopped

1 dark chocolate candy bar (1.45 ounces)


Place a greased 9-in. springform pan on a double thickness of heavy-duty foil (about 18 in. square). Securely wrap foil around pan. In a small bowl, combine wafer crumbs, butter and sugar. Press onto the bottom and 1 in. up the sides of prepared pan. Place pan on a baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

In a microwave-safe bowl, melt chips and cream; stir until smooth. Stir in coffee granules until dissolved. Set aside. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Beat in the sour cream, vanilla and salt; gradually beat in chocolate mixture. Add eggs; beat on low speed just until combined. Pour into crust. Place springform pan in a large baking pan; add 1-1/2 in. of hot water to larger pan.

Bake at 350° for 55-65 minutes or until center is just set and top appears dull. Remove springform pan from water bath. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Sprinkle with Heath bars.

Carefully run a knife around edge of pan to loosen; cool 1 hour longer. Refrigerate overnight. Chop the dark chocolate candy bar; melt in a microwave and stir until smooth. Drizzle over top of cheesecake. Yield: 12 servings.

Tortilla Crusted Goat Cheese & Asparagus Quiche

This recipe was in the Everyday with Rachael Ray Magazine. It was very good.

Four 7-inch whole wheat tortillas( I used Ezekiel wraps)
 10 asparagus stalks, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
 1/2 red onion, finely chopped( I used a yellow onion)
 4 ounces sliced mushrooms (about 1 1/2 cups)
Salt and pepper
 One 4-ounce log goat cheese
 3 eggs
 1/2 cup plain yogurt, preferably

( I used Dannanon full fat plain)

Roast the unused asparagus alongside the quiche for 15 minutes and refrigerate to keep on hand as a healthy snack.

Directions:Preheat the oven to 375°. In a greased 9-inch pie plate, overlap the tortillas to make a crust; place on a rimmed baking sheet. Meanwhile, fill a large nonstick skillet a third of the way with salted water; bring to a boil. Add the asparagus and cook until crisp-tender, about 1 minute; drain, rinse under cold water and pat dry.

Wipe out the skillet, add the olive oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add the onion and mushrooms, season with salt and pepper and cook until the mushrooms are golden, about 3 minutes. Stir in the asparagus; season with salt and pepper. Spread evenly in the tortilla crust, then crumble the cheese on top.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and yogurt and season with salt and pepper; pour into the tortilla crust. Bake on the baking sheet until just set in the center and lightly golden, about 30 minutes. Let rest for about 10 minutes before serving.


Today is the feast of st. Catherine of Sienna.
Dominican Tertiary, born at Siena, 25 March, 1347; died at Rome, 29 April, 1380.

She was the youngest but one of a very large family. Her father, Giacomo di Benincasa, was a dyer; her mother, Lapa, the daughter of a local poet. They belonged to the lower middle-class faction of tradesmen and petty notaries, known as "the Party of the Twelve", which between one revolution and another ruled the Republic of Siena from 1355 to 1368. From her earliest childhood Catherine began to see visions and to practise extreme austerities. At the age of seven she consecrated her virginity to Christ; in her sixteenth year she took the habit of the Dominican Tertiaries, and renewed the life of the anchorites of the desert in a little room in her father's house. After three years of celestial visitations and familiar conversation with Christ, she underwent the mystical experience known as the "spiritual espousals", probably during the carnival of 1366. She now rejoined her family, began to tend the sick, especially those afflicted with the most repulsive diseases, to serve the poor, and to labour for the conversion of sinners. Though always suffering terrible physical pain, living for long intervals on practically no food save the Blessed Sacrament, she was ever radiantly happy and full of practical wisdom no less than the highest spiritual insight. All her contemporaries bear witness to her extraordinary personal charm, which prevailed over the continual persecution to which she was subjected even by the friars of her own order and by her sisters in religion. She began to gather disciples round her, both men and women, who formed a wonderful spiritual fellowship, united to her by the bonds of mystical love. During the summer of 1370 she received a series of special manifestations of Divine mysteries, which culminated in a prolonged trance, a kind of mystical death, in which she had a vision of Hell, Purgatory, and Heaven, and heard a Divine command to leave her cell and enter the public life of the world. She began to dispatch letters to men and women in every condition of life, entered into correspondence with the princes and republics of Italy, was consulted by the papal legates about the affairs of the Church, and set herself to heal the wounds of her native land by staying the fury of civil war and the ravages of faction. She implored the pope, Gregory XI, to leave Avignon, to reform the clergy and the administration of the Papal States, and ardently threw herself into his design for a crusade, in the hopes of uniting the powers of Christendom against the infidels, and restoring peace to Italy by delivering her from the wandering companies of mercenary soldiers. While at Pisa, on the fourth Sunday of Lent, 1375, she received the Stigmata, although, at her special prayer, the marks did not appear outwardly in her body while she lived.

Mainly through the misgovernment of the papal officials, war broke out between Florence and the Holy See, and almost the whole of the Papal States rose in insurrection. Catherine had already been sent on a mission from the pope to secure the neutrality of Pisa and Lucca. In June, 1376, she went to Avignon as ambassador of the Florentines, to make their peace; but, either through the bad faith of the republic or through a misunderstanding caused by the frequent changes in its government, she was unsuccessful. Nevertheless she made such a profound impression upon the mind of the pope, that, in spite of the opposition of the French king and almost the whole of the Sacred College, he returned to Rome (17 January, 1377). Catherine spent the greater part of 1377 in effecting a wonderful spiritual revival in the country districts subject to the Republic of Siena, and it was at this time that she miraculously learned to write, though she still seems to have chiefly relied upon her secretaries for her correspondence. Early in 1378 she was sent by Pope Gregory to Florence, to make a fresh effort for peace. Unfortunately, through the factious conduct of her Florentine associates, she became involved in the internal politics of the city, and during a popular tumult (22 June) an attempt was made upon her life. She was bitterly disappointed at her escape, declaring that her sins had deprived her of the red rose of martyrdom. Nevertheless, during the disastrous revolution known as "the tumult of the Ciompi", she still remained at Florence or in its territory until, at the beginning of August, news reached the city that peace had been signed between the republic and the new pope. Catherine then instantly returned to Siena, where she passed a few months of comparative quiet, dictating her "Dialogue", the book of her meditations and revelations.

In the meanwhile the Great Schism had broken out in the Church. From the outset Catherine enthusiastically adhered to the Roman claimant, Urban VI, who in November, 1378, summoned her to Rome. In the Eternal City she spent what remained of her life, working strenuously for the reformation of the Church, serving the destitute and afflicted, and dispatching eloquent letters in behalf of Urban to high and low in all directions. Her strength was rapidly being consumed; she besought her Divine Bridegroom to let her bear the punishment for all the sins of the world, and to receive the ................

Pasta santa Caterina

2 lb. ripe tomatoes (I used 2 cans diced tomatoes drained)

2 Tbsp. Italian parsley, chopped

2 Tbsp. fresh Basil, chopped (I used 1 Tbsp. dried Basil)

2 tsp. garlic minced

3 Tbsp. freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1 tsp. dried oregano

6 Tbsp. olive oil

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. black pepper

1 lb. spaghetti


Peel tomatoes, remove seeds and dice.

In a medium bowl combine all of the ingredients except the pasta.

Marinate at room temperature for about 1 hour.

Cook the pasta according to package directions, until tender. Drain thoroughly, and transfer pasta to a heated serving dish. Add the sauce and toss. Adjust seasonings and serve with extra Parmesan cheese.

Serves 8 to 10.
This recipe was superb. Great feast day ideas can be found at Catholic Cuisine where I saw this recipe.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Breakfast Pick Me Up Juice

1/2 ccantaloupe
1 large carrot
1/2 lime
1 small apple

Process in juicer.

Antipasto Bread

1 lb. pizza dough
1/2 lb. salami
1/2 lb. hot ham
1 lb. pepperoni, sliced
1/2 lb. mozzarella, sliced
1/2 lb. provolone, sliced
1-2 C giardinara salad
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees
Spray a jelly roll pan with cooking spray.
Roll out the pizza crust. Layer the meats and cheeses. in the food processor, process the giardinara salad. Layer the salad on top. Roll up in a jelly roll fashion and transfer to baking sheet. Bake for 40-60 minutes or until golden brown.

Pearl Onions, Peas and Mushrooms

 1 C of pearl onions( peeled , boiled for 10 minutes and drained)
 2 cloves garlic, minced
 2 tablespoons butter
 1 (10 ounce) package frozen green peas, thawed 2 C sliced mushrooms
 1 teaspoon white sugar
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme


Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat. Saute onions and garlic in butter until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the peas and mushrooms, then season with sugar, salt, thyme and pepper. Reduce heat to low, and cook just until heated through.

Best Grilled Burgers

This recipe is excellent. When we are in the mood for burgers again this will be the recipe I use. These burgers were moist and juicy. I used Dubliner cheese.

Chinese Celery Salad, Cold Sesame Noodles & Green Curry Chicken


Yield: 4 to 6 servings

1 bunch of celery, top and bottom removed, stalks separated and cut in half lengthwise

1 tablespoon rice vinegar or white vinegar

1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil

4 tablespoons soy sauce

2 dashes Chinese chili or hot sauce (optional)

1/2 teaspoon sugar

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add celery and blanch for 2 minutes. Remove, rinse and cool. Peel off fibrous strings. Cut celery into bite-size pieces.

2. In a bowl, whisk together vinegar, sesame oil, soy sauce, chili oil (if using), sugar and cilantro (if using). Toss in celery. Cover and refrigerate to cool before serving.

This recipe is from MAD HUNGRY by Lucinda Scala Quinn

Cold Sesame Noodles

Serves 4 to 6


1 pound Chineese egg noodles, or spaghetti or linguine

½ tsp toasted sesame oil

6 tablespoons sesame pasta (tahini)

¾ cup water, plus more if needed

3 tblsp soy sauce

1 12/ teaspoon sugar

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 scallion (both white and green parts), thinly sliced

1 ½ inches of fresh ginger, peeled and chopped (1 tablespoon)

Chinese chili oil (optional)


1) Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add the noodles, and cook until just barely tender, 5-6 minutes, or according to the package instructions. Drain well. Toss them with the sesame oil to coat. Cover and refrigerate.

2) Meanwile, in a large bowl, thin the sesame paste by stirring enough water into the paste to achieve the consistency of thick cream. Whisk together the vinegar, soy sauce, and sugar. Add the mixture to the sesame paste. Stir in the garlic, three quarters of the scallion, and the ginger.

3) Just before serving, toss the chilled noodles with the sauce. Garnish with the remaining scallion and drizzle with the chili oil, if using.
This recipe is from MAD HUNGRY by Lucinda Scala Quinn

Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes

9 C all purpose flour

1 C sugar

1/4 C baking powder

1 tsp. salt

Combine all ingredients in a zip top bag. Shake to combine. Makes 10 2/3 C , enough to prepare 4 batches of pancakes.

For Fluffiest ever Pancakes

2 2/3 C homemade pancake mix

2 eggs

1/4 C butter, melted

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 3/4 C seltzer water

Lightly grease a non stick skillet , heat over medium heat. Place pancake mix in a large bowl, making a well in the center. In a small bowl whisk together the eggs, butter and vanilla. Pour into the well. Whisk mixture together until slightly moistened. Add seltzer and whisk just until blended. Drop batter by 1/4 Cupfuls onto the heated pan. , cook until bubbles start to rise through the tops of the pancakes and bottoms are browned. Flip the pancakes over, and cook until lightly browned on the bottom.

For banan chocolate chip pancakes add to the batter 2 bananas thinly sliced and 3/4 C mini chocolate chips.

Homemade Pancake Mix

9 C all purpose flour
1 C sugar
1/4 C baking powder
1 tsp. salt
Combine all ingredients in a zip top bag. Shake to combine. Makes 10 2/3 C , enough to prepare 4 batches of pancakes.
For Fluffiest ever Pancakes
2 2/3 C homemade pancake mix
2 eggs
1/4 C butter, melted
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 3/4 C seltzer water
Lightly grease a non stick skillet , heat over medium heat. Place pancake mix in a large bowl, making a well in the center. In a small bowl whisk together the eggs, butter and vanilla. Pour into the well. Whisk mixture together until slightly moistened. Add seltzer and whisk just until blended. Drop batter by 1/4 Cupfuls onto the heated pan. , cook until bubbles start to rise through the tops of the pancakes and bottoms are browned. Flip the pancakes over, and cook until lightly browned on the bottom.

For maple blueberry pancakes Stir in 1T maple extract, then 2 1/2 C fresh blueberries. If using froze berries do not stir in to the batter, drop blueberries on top of the pancakes just after you spoon the batter onto the pan.

Whole Wheat Carrot Cake Muffins

3 1/2 C carrot pulp ( from juice extractor)
1/2 C apple pulp
3 C whole wheat flour

1 C vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 C manuka honey
1 T baking soda
2 T cinnamon
2 tsp. nutmeg
1 T vanilla extract
1 1/2 C crushed walnuts( optional)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Blend oil, carrot and apple pulp together. Add honey, eggs and vanilla to pulp mixture. Sift all dry ingredients and mix with pulp. Add nuts and mix. Place liners in a muffin pan. Fill 3/4 full and bake for 12 minutes or until golden brown,.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Dragon Cake for St. George's Feast Day

Friday was St. George's feast day so I made this dragon cake. I made the cake tonight to celebrate with some friends tommorrow. This is the recipe for the vanilla cake and frosting I used.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Francese

1 tablespoon butter

1 medium onion, diced small

1/2 cup dry white wine or dry vermouth

1/3 cup lemon juice (from 2 lemons)

2 1/4 cups low sodium chicken broth

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon table salt

1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

2 eggs

2 tablespoons milk

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 tablespoons butter

Melt 1 tbsp butter in a medium non-reactive saucepan. Saute onions until translucent, 2-3 minute Add wine, juice and broth. Turn heat to high until sauce boils, then turn down to medium and reduce to 1 1/2 cups. Strain into a measuring cup and set aside.

Preheat oven to 200 degrees F. Place a baking rack in a rimmed baking sheet and place in oven.

Slice breasts in half horizontally and pound to an even 1/4" thickness. Whisk salt and pepper into flour in a pie plate. Whisk eggs and milk in a second pie plate. Dip chicken cutlets in flour, then in egg, then back in flour. Set aside on a rack over a baking sheet.

When all 8 cutlets are coated, melt 1 tbsp butter in 1 tbsp oil in a 12" nonstick skillet. Saute 4 cutlets over medium heat until nicely browned, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Flip and brown another 30-60 seconds. Remove cutlets to baking rack in oven.

Wipe out pan with paper towel, and using another 1 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp oil, cook remaining 4 cutlets. Remove to baking rack.

Wipe out pan with paper towel and add reserved sauce to now-empty pan over medium heat. Swirl in remaining 2 tbsp butter. Dip cutlets in sauce and serve, 2 cutlets per serving.

King Arthur's Best Fudge Brownies Ever

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter

2 1/4 cups sugar

4 large eggs

1 1/4 cups Double-Dutch Dark Cocoa or Dutch-process cocoa

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon espresso powder

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

2 cups chocolate chips

8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter

15 3/4 ounces sugar

4 large eggs

3 3/4 ounces Double-Dutch Dark Cocoa or Dutch-Process Cocoa

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon espresso powder

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

6 1/4 ounces King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

12 ounces chocolate chips


1) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9" x 13" pan

2) In a medium-sized microwave-safe bowl, or in a saucepan set over low heat, melt the butter, then add the sugar and stir to combine. Return the mixture to the heat (or microwave) briefly, just until it's hot (about 110°F to 120°F), but not bubbling; it'll become shiny looking as you stir it. Heating this mixture a second time will dissolve more of the sugar, which will yield a shiny top crust on your brownies.

3) While the sugar heats a second time, crack the 4 eggs into a bowl, and beat them with the cocoa, salt, baking powder, espresso powder, and vanilla till smooth.

4) Add the hot butter/sugar mixture, stirring until smooth.

5) Add the flour and chips, again stirring until smooth. Note: If you want the chips to remain intact in the baked brownies, rather than melting in, let the batter cool in the bowl for about 20 minutes before stirring in the chips.

6) Spoon the batter into a lightly greased 9" x 13" pan.

7) Bake the brownies for about 30 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, or with just a few moist crumbs clinging to it. The brownies should feel set on the edges, and the center should look very moist, but not uncooked. Remove them from the oven and cool on a rack before cutting and serving.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Stir Fried Chicken With Bok Choy and Noodle cake

This recipe is from America's test Kitchen. I made a few changes. The recipe was great. I would make this again.


Noodle Cake
9 ounces Chinese egg noodles (fresh)( I used linguini)
1 teaspoon Salt( I used sea salt)
2 Scallions , sliced thin
4 tablespoons Vegetable oil
Stir-Fry Sauce
1/4 cup Low-sodium chicken broth
2  tablespoons Soy sauce( I used Bragg's liquid amminos)
1 tablespoon Dry sherry( I used a Cabernet)
1 tablespoon Oyster sauce( i used Bragg's liquid Amminos)
1 teaspoon Sugar
1 teaspoon Cornstarch( I used potato starch)
1/4 teaspoon Red pepper flakes
Chicken and Vegetables
1 pound Boneless, skinless chicken breasts , patted dry with paper towels, trimmed, and cut into 1-inch squares
1 tablespoon Soy sauce( I used Bragg's liquid Amminos)
1 tablespoon Dry sherry( I used a cabernet)
2 tablespoons Toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon Cornstarch(  I used potato starch)
1 tablespoon Unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon Minced fresh ginger
1 Medium clove garlic , minced or pressed through a garlic press (about 1 teaspoon)
8 teaspoons Peanut oil or vegetable oil
1 Small head bok choy , stalks sliced on the bias into 1/4-inch slices, and greens cut into 1/2-inch strips
1 Small red bell pepper , cut into 1/4-inch strips( I used mushrooms)


1. For the noodle cake: Bring 3 quarts water to a boil over high heat in a large pot. Add the noodles and salt to the boiling water; cook the noodles until tender, 2 to 3 minutes (do not overcook). Drain thoroughly through a colander. Add the scallions to the noodles in the colander and toss to combine; set aside.

2. For the sauce: Meanwhile, whisk together the sauce ingredients; set aside.

3. For the chicken and vegetables: Toss the chicken with the soy sauce and sherry; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the sesame oil, cornstarch, and flour; set aside. In a small bowl, mix together the ginger, garlic, and 1 teaspoon peanut oil; set aside.

4. While the chicken marinates, cook the noodle cake. Heat 2 tablespoons of the vegetable oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Spread the noodles evenly across the bottom of the skillet and press with a spatula to flatten into a cake. Cook until crisp and golden brown, 5 to 8 minutes.

5. Slide the noodle cake onto a large plate. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons vegetable oil to the skillet; swirl to coat. Invert the noodle cake onto a second plate and slide it, browned side up, back into the skillet. Cook until golden brown on the second side, about 5 to 8 minutes.

6. Slide the noodle cake onto a cutting board and let sit for at least 5 minutes before slicing into wedges and serving. (The noodle cake can be transferred to a wire rack set over a baking sheet and kept warm in a 200-degree oven for up to 20 minutes).

7. Stir the marinated chicken into the sesame oil-cornstarch mixture until uniformly combined. Heat 2 teaspoons peanut oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over high heat until smoking; add half of the chicken to the skillet in a flat, even layer. Cook, without stirring, but gently separating the pieces, until golden brown on the first side, about 1 minute; turn the chicken pieces and cook until lightly browned on the second side, about 30 seconds. Transfer the chicken to a clean bowl. Repeat with an additional 2 teaspoons peanut oil and the remaining chicken; cover to keep warm.

8. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon peanut oil to the now-empty skillet and return to high heat until just smoking. Add the bok choy stalks and red bell pepper and cook until lightly browned, 2 to 3 minutes.

9. Push the vegetables to the sides of the skillet to clear the center; add the garlic-ginger mixture to the clearing and cook, mashing the mixture with a spoon, until fragrant, 15 to 20 seconds, then stir the mixture into the stalks and continue to cook until the stalks are tender-crisp, about 30 seconds longer. Stir in the bok choy greens and cook until beginning to wilt, about 30 seconds.

10. Return the chicken to the skillet. Whisk the sauce to recombine, then add to the skillet and cook, tossing constantly, until the sauce is thickened and the chicken is heated through, about 30 seconds. Transfer to a serving platter and serve immediately.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Baked Manicotti

This recipe is from America's test Kitchen Tomato Sauce

2  28-ounce Cans diced tomatoes (in juice)
2 tablespoons Extra-virgin olive oil
3 Medium cloves garlic , minced or pressed through garlic press (about 1 tablespoon)
1/2 teaspoon Hot red pepper flakes , optional
Table salt
2 tablespoons Chopped fresh basil

Cheese Filling and Pasta

3 cups Part-skim ricotta cheese

4 ounces Grated Parmesan cheese (about 2 cups)

8 ounces Shredded mozzarella cheese (about 2 cups)

2 Large eggs , lightly beaten

3/4 teaspoon Table salt

1/2 teaspoon Ground black pepper

2 tablespoons Chopped fresh parsley leaves

2 tablespoons Chopped fresh basil

16 No-boil lasagna noodles (see note above)


1. For the Sauce: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Pulse 1 can tomatoes with their juice in food processor until coarsely chopped, 3 or 4 pulses. Transfer to bowl. Repeat with remaining can tomatoes.

2. Heat oil, garlic, and pepper flakes (if using) in large saucepan over medium heat until fragrant but not brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and 1/2 teaspoon salt and simmer until thickened slightly, about 15 minutes. Stir in basil; adjust seasoning with salt.

3. For the cheese filling: Combine ricotta, 1 cup Parmesan, mozzarella, eggs, salt, pepper, and herbs in medium bowl; set aside.

4. To assemble: Pour 1 inch boiling water into 13 by 9-inch broilersafe baking dish, then add noodles one at a time. Let noodles soak until pliable, about 5 minutes, separating noodles with tip of sharp knife to prevent sticking. Remove noodles from water and place in single layer on clean kitchen towels; discard water in baking dish and dry baking dish.

5. Spread bottom of baking dish evenly with 1 1/2 cups sauce. Using soupspoon, spread 1/4 cup cheese mixture evenly onto bottom three-quarters of each noodle (with short side facing you), leaving top quarter of noodle exposed. Roll into tube shape and arrange in baking dish seam side down. Top evenly with remaining sauce, making certain that pasta is completely covered.

6. Cover manicotti with aluminum foil. Bake until bubbling, about 40 minutes, then remove foil. Remove baking dish, adjust oven rack to uppermost position (about 6 inches from heating element), and heat broiler. Sprinkle manicotti evenly with remaining 1 cup Parmesan. Broil until cheese is spotty brown, 4 to 6 minutes. Cool 15 minutes, then serve.

STEP BY STEP: Manicotti 1, 2, 3

In our streamlined recipe, the ricotta filling is spread onto softened no-boil lasagna noodles, eliminating the slippery task of stuffing parboiled manicotti shells.

1. Soak no-boil lasagna noodles in boiling water for 5 minutes until pliable, using tip of paring knife to separate noodles and prevent sticking.

2. Using soupspoon, spread about 1/4 cup filling onto three-quarters of each noodle, leaving top quarter of noodle exposed.

3. Roll each noodle by hand and place in baking dish, seam side down.

STEP BY STEP: No Shortcut At All

America's Test Kitchen Chicken Kiev

Unbaked, breaded chicken Kievs can be refrigerated overnight and baked the next day or frozen for up to one month. To cook frozen chicken Kievs, increase the baking time to 50-55 minutes (do not thaw chicken).

Recipe Source: America's Test Kitchen

Prep time: 120 Min. Cook time: 45 Min. Serves: 4 Ingredients

1 stick butter, softened

1 tablespoon minced shallot

1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley leaves

1/2 teaspoon minced fresh tarragon leaves

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

3/8 teaspoon table salt

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

5 slices white sandwich bread, cut into 3/4-inch cubes

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, tenderloins removed

1 cup all-purpose flour

3 large eggs, beaten

1 teaspoon dijon mustard


1. For the Herb Butter: Mix butter, shallot, herbs, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in medium bowl with rubber spatula until thoroughly combined. Form into 3-inch square on plastic wrap; wrap tightly and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.

2. For the Chicken: Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position; heat oven to 300 degrees. Add half of bread cubes to food processor and pulse until cubes are coarsely ground, about sixteen 1-second pulses. Transfer crumbs to large bowl and repeat with remaining bread cubes (you should have about 3 1/2 cups crumbs). Add 1/8 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper to bread crumbs. Add oil and toss until crumbs are evenly coated. Spread crumbs on rimmed baking sheet and bake until golden brown and dry, about 25 minutes, stirring twice during baking time. Let cool to room temperature (you should have about 2 1/2 cups bread crumbs).

3. Prepare cutlets, following illustrations 1 and 2 below. Unwrap butter and cut into 4 rectangular pieces. Place chicken breast cut side up on work surface; season both sides with salt and pepper. Following illustration 3, place 1 piece of butter in center of bottom half of breast. Roll bottom edge of chicken over butter, then fold in sides and continue rolling to form neat, tight package, pressing on seam to seal. Repeat with remaining butter and chicken. Refrigerate chicken, uncovered, to allow edges to seal, about 1 hour.

4. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Place flour, eggs, and bread crumbs in separate pie plates or shallow dishes. Season flour with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper; season bread crumbs with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add mustard to eggs and whisk to combine. Dredge 1 chicken breast in flour, shaking off excess, then coat with egg mixture, allowing excess to drip off (illustrations 4 and 5). Coat all sides of chicken breast with bread crumbs, pressing gently so that crumbs adhere (illustration 6). Place on wire rack set over rimmed baking sheet. Repeat flouring and breading of remaining chicken breasts.

5. Bake until instant-read thermometer inserted into center of chicken (from top) registers 160 degrees, 40 to 45 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes on wire rack before serving.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Yogurt Waffles

3/4 c all purpose flour
1/2 C whole wheat flour
1/2 C rolled oats( not qiuck cooking)
3/4 tsp. coarse salt
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 c packed brown sugar
3 T melted unsalted butter
3 large eggs
1 1/2 C vanilla yort
In a large bowl whisk together the flours, oats, salt, baking powder and baking soda. In another bowl whisk together the : sugar, butter , eggs and yogurt until smooth.  Stir egg mixture into flour mixture and mix well until combined. Let batter sit for 15 minutes. Heat waffle iron according to maufacturers directions.  Cook until waffles are golden brown. Serve with maple syrup.

This recipe is from Everyday Food Magazine.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Stacked Burrito Pie

This recipe is from Family Fun Magazine. We all loved this recipe.

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

3/4 pound lean ground beef

2 teaspoons chili powder

1 teaspoon cumin

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup water

1 (15 1/2-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed

4 (10-inch) flour tortillas ( I used Ezekiel sprouted wraps)

1/2 cup sour cream

1 cup salsa

8 ounces Cheddar or Monterey Jack, grated


In a large skillet over medium-low heat, warm the oil. Add the onion and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring often. Add the garlic and sauté another minute.

Increase the heat to medium, then add the ground beef, chili powder, and cumin. Cook the mixture until the beef is browned and no longer pink, stirring often, about 3 minutes. Add the salt, water, black beans, and corn, and bring the mixture to a boil. Allow it to continue boiling, stirring occasionally, until the liquid evaporates, about 20 minutes. Remove the mixture from the heat and let it cool for 10 minutes.

Heat the oven to 350º. Using the rim of a 9-inch springform pan (see "Tools of the Trade" above) as a template, trim 3 of the tortillas to the size of the pan. Leave the fourth tortilla untrimmed. Note: You can also bake this dish in a 9-inch round cake pan and serve it like a lasagna.

Butter the bottom and the sides of the pan. Press the untrimmed tortilla evenly into the pan's bottom. Spread 2 tablespoons of the sour cream over the tortilla, followed by 1/4 cup of the salsa. Spoon and spread a quarter of the beef mixture over the salsa, then sprinkle a quarter of the grated cheese evenly over the top.

Place one of the trimmed tortillas on top of the cheese, then repeat the layering of the sour cream, salsa, beef, and cheese. Continue this way until the ingredients and tortillas are used up. You should end up with four layers, topped with the final sprinkling of cheese.

Bake the pie until heated through, about 30 minutes. Allow it to cool for 10 minutes, then remove the rim from the springform pan, if you used one. Slice the pie into wedges using a sharp knife. Serves 10.

Marmalade Chicken

1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon red-wine vinegar
2 tablespoon orange marmalade
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoonpotato starch
8 ounces chicken tenders
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 medium red onion, minced

1. Whisk broth, vinegar, marmalade, mustard and cornstarch in a small bowl.

2. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook until golden, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.

3. Add the remaining 1 teaspoon oil and shallot to the pan and cook, stirring often, until the shallot begins to brown, about 30 seconds. Whisk the broth mixture and add it to the pan. Bring to a simmer, scraping up any browned bits with a wooden spoon. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer; cook until the sauce is slightly reduced, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add the chicken; return to a simmer. Cook, turning once, until the chicken is heated through, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat and stir in orange zest.

Dandelion Greens

1 pound dandelion greens

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 clove garlic, minced

1 tsp. droied crushed red pepper
1/4 C extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper

Parmesan cheese


Discard dandelion green roots; wash greens well in salted water. Cut leaves into 2-inch pieces. Cook greens uncovered in small amount of salted water until tender, about 10 minutes. Sauté onion, garlic, and red pepper in oil. Drain greens; add to onion garlic mixture. Taste dandelion greens and season with salt and pepper. Serve dandelion greens with grated Parmesan cheese.

Wild Leek Creamy Potato Soup

2 large handfulls of wild leeks (leaves and bulbs)

8 medium sized yukon gold potatoes
2 T butter
2T extra virgin olive oil
dash salt
dash pepper
4 C beef broth
2 cups milk
1C shredded sharp cheddar cheese


Peel potatoes and dice

Melt butterand olive oil in a large  pot, add diced potatoes and a dash of salt and saute until lightly golden

Add beef broth.Wash and trim the leeks
Simmer till potatoes are tender. Blend half of the soup with an immersion blender until creamy and thick. Add milk and cheese slowly. Heatuntil the cheese is melted and serve.

Racheal Ray's Stroganoff Burgers

2 pounds ground sirloin

1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce ( i used Bragg's liquid Amminos)

Salt and pepper

1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped

1/4 cup finely chopped chives

1/4 cup finely chopped dill

2 tablespoons EVOO – Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided

3 tablespoons butter, divided

1/2 pound white mushrooms, thinly sliced

1 small onion, chopped

1 large clove garlic, chopped

2 tablespoons flour

1/2 cup dry white wine ( i used red wine)

2 cups beef stock

1/2 cup sour cream ( I used dannon full fat yogurt)

4 slices good quality white Pullman bread

4 deli pickles, dill or garlic, halved

Sliced or halved radishes, lightly salted
In a bowl, combine meat with Worcestershire, salt, pepper and herbs. Divide the mixture into 4 portions then form each portion into patties, making them thinner at the center for even cooking. Drizzle burgers with 1 tablespoon EVOO.

Heat a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Cook burgers 10 minutes for medium-rare and up to 16 minutes for medium-well, turning them once halfway through.

Meanwhile, in a saucepan heat 1 tablespoon EVOO and 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add mushrooms and cook 7-8 minutes. Add onions and garlic, and cook 7-8 minutes more, until tender. Season with salt and pepper, stir in flour, cook 1 minute then stir in wine and stock. Bring to a bubble, reduce heat and let thicken. Stir in sour cream and turn off heat.

Toast and butter the bread slices. To serve, set a piece of buttered toast on plates, top with a burger then spoon the Stroganoff sauce down over top. Serve pickles and radishes alongside

Orange Popovers

This recipe is from the September 2009 issue of Food and Wine Magazine.

3 large eggs, at room temperature

1 tablespoon sugar

1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest

1 1/4 cups milk

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt


Preheat the oven to 425°. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs with the sugar and orange zest. Whisk in the milk and 3 tablespoons of the melted butter. In another bowl, whisk the flour with the baking powder and salt. Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until only small lumps remain.

Brush the cups of a muffin tin (preferably not nonstick) with the remaining 1 tablespoon of melted butter and heat the muffin tin in the oven for 5 minutes; the butter will turn a nutty brown. Carefully fill the muffin cups halfway with the popover batter. Bake the popovers for about 30 minutes, until they are risen and browned. Turn the popovers out onto a serving platter and serve them right away.

Serve With: preserves, jam or maple syrup

Friday, April 9, 2010

French Fries

2/3 cup white sugar
4 cups warm water
4 large russet potatoes - peeled, and sliced into 1/4 inch strips
 6 cups vegetable oil for frying salt to taste


In a medium bowl, dissolve the sugar in warm water. Soak potatoes in water mixture for 15 minutes. Remove from water, and dry thoroughly on paper towels.

Heat oil in deep-fryer to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Add potatoes,cook halfway and remove to paper towel lined plates. Fry remaining fries and drain. After potatoes have cooled refry all potatoes until golden brown.Season with sea salt.

Skillet Baked Penne

In a skillet that is oven safe sautee 3 cloves of garlic, sliced in 2-3 T olive oil. Add a dash of red pepper flakes and salt and pepper to taste. Add 1 can of crushed tomatoes (28 oz.) 3 C water, and 1 13 oz. box of whole wheat penne pasta. Cover and cook , stirring often, maintaiing a vigorous simmer , until the pasta is almost tender, 15-18 minutes. Stir in 1/2 c milk, 1 c ricotta cheese 1/4 C minced, basil leaves, 1/2 C grated Parmesean cheese and 2 T butter.  Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle 1 C mozzarella cheese evenly over the top. Transfer the skillet to a 425 degree oven for 10-15 minutes. bake until the cheese has melted and browned.

Broiled Tilapia

In a 9X13" pan drizzle 2T olive oil, place 6 tilapia fillets on top. Season the fillets with salt and pepper. Top with bread crumbs, Parmesean cheese and fresh parsely. Broil for 10 minutes and serve.

Corn Free Gluten Free Crackers

In a mixer beat 3 eggs until light and fluffy. Stir in 6 T water. Then add 1 C cooked brown jasmine rice, 1 1/2 C brown rice flour, and 9 T chickpea flour, 2 tsp. sea salt, 2 T bragg's liquid Amminos. Add enough boiling water to make the batter the almost the consistency of a cake batter. Generously oil a jelly roll pan with olive oil, spread batter evenly , covering the pa. brush top with olive oil and sprinkle with flax seeds. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 1 hour or until golden brown.

Maple- Walnut Chicken

This recipe was in the October 2009 Good Housekeeping Magazine. I used fresh spinach and steamed on the stove and i also used walnuts and almonds. Easy and tasty dish.
4 (6- to 7-ounce) skinless chicken-breast halves

1 tablespoon(s) olive oil

1 tablespoon(s) packed fresh thyme leaves

1/2 cup(s) walnuts

5 tablespoon(s) cider vinegar

3 tablespoon(s) maple syrup

1 package(s) (8.5-ounce) precooked whole-grain pilaf

1 bag(s) microwave-in-the-bag spinach



Rub chicken breasts with oil, then rub with thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Let stand.

In 12-inch nonstick skillet, toast walnuts on medium 4 to 6 minutes or until golden and fragrant, stirring occasionally. Transfer walnuts to dish; do not remove skillet from heat.

Add chicken to same skillet; cook 12 minutes or until golden brown and juices run clear when pierced with tip of knife, turning frequently. Transfer chicken to clean plate; do not remove skillet from heat.

To same skillet, add vinegar and cook 1 minute, stirring. Add syrup and 1/2 cup water; simmer 6 to 7 minutes or until mixture has thickened, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, cook pilaf, then spinach, in microwave according to package directions.

Stir walnuts and any chicken juices into sauce. Divide pilaf and spinach among 4 dinner plates. Top with chicken, and spoon maple-walnut sauce all around.

Silk Dyed Easter Eggs 2010

I used Martha Stewart's silk tie technique.