2018-02-06T06:18:14+00:00February 6th, 2018|

Lentils are a great pantry staple; they can be made into all kinds of dishes and
unlike other legumes cook in about half an hour. For this get the good old
dependable greeny-brown lentils; the orange, red, or black ones tend to get
mooshy. For 4, you’ll need:
Olive oil for sautéing
1 medium onion, chopped
1 small carrot, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
2-3 fresh sweet Italian sausage links, sliced
1 Tb. tomato paste
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1 ½ C. dry lentils
3 C. stock, broth, or water
4-5 leaves kales, stemmed and chopped (optional)
Salt, pepper, oregano, red pepper flakes (to taste)
Splash of red wine vinegar
Sauté the vegetables in the oil till they start to soften, then add the sausages.
Cook and stir on medium low till the sausages are almost done, then add the
garlic and cook about another minute. Stir in the tomato paste, add the lentils and
stock, and bring to a boil. As soon as it’s boiling, turn the stew down to a gentle
simmer and cook till the lentils are soft – about 20 to 30 minutes. Toward the end
of the cooking time add the kale – it’s really good. When the lentils are done, add
the seasonings and the vinegar if you want, serve in big bowls with some good
bread on the side, and be very happy!


2018-03-06T02:25:19+00:00February 6th, 2018|


Normally I don’t use canned salmon, but in this case it’s really good, as long as you get the canned red
(or sockeye) salmon. Don’t get anything else – it’ll suck! But this can be played with and stretched and
has served us well at many a get together. For about 3 cups of spread, you’ll need:
2 6 oz. cans skinless boneless red salmon
2 8 oz. packages cream cheese, softened (you can use only 1 package of cream cheese if you want it
more salmon-y)
¾ C. mayonnaise, or to taste
¼ of a minced red onion
Grated zest of 1 lemon
2 Tb. drained small capers, optional
Put all of this in a bowl, mix it well, and chill it till about an hour before you want to serve it. Bring it to
room temp and serve with raw vegetables, crackers, and /or pita chips. Delightful with champagne!!


2018-02-06T05:45:54+00:00February 6th, 2018|

This is something I made up for Shaun, an awesome kid who unfortunately thinks
he doesn’t like vegetables! To serve 4 -6:
 2 baking potatoes, peeled and cubed
 3 to 4 parsnips, peeled and chopped
 ½ head cauliflower, cut into florets
Place all the cut up vegetables into a good sized sauce pan and cover with cold
water. Salt it lightly, bring to a boil, then turn it down to simmer and cook till
everything is fork tender. Drain in a colander, return to the warm pot, and add:
 approx.. 2 Tb. of butter – more if you want
 ¼ cup ½ and ½, or cream, warmed a bit
Smoosh this all up like you’re making mashed potatoes, which you kind of are,
then serve with salt and pepper to taste. You can also turn this into a greased
casserole dish, cover it with grated cheddar, and bake it at 350 till the cheese
melts. SO good! And your little darlings – or your spouse, or your guests – will
never know they just enjoyed parsnips. Shaun loved this – I think you will too!


2018-02-06T05:45:07+00:00February 6th, 2018|

This is a great recipe that I came up with for my pal Shaun, the guy who hates all
vegetables except corn and Edamame. I’m sure he’ll grow out of that, but in the
meantime, this was a fun way to get some more good stuff into him. For four,
you’ll need:
I small onion, finely diced
1 small red pepper, seeded and finely diced
1 box frozen corn, thawed (unless you have beautiful in season sweet corn on the
cob, then scrape the kernels off 4 or 5 ears and use those)
1 bag frozen shelled Edamame (soybeans) 12 oz., thawed
a splash of chicken or vegetable stock, if you’re cooking vegetarian
salt and pepper, to taste
In a large sauté pan on medium heat, sauté the onion and pepper in a mixture of
butter and olive oil, about 1 Tb. of each. When the onions are nice and soft, dump
in your corn and the Edamame, add a bit of chicken stock, stir it then partially
cover it. All you’re really doing at this point is warming up the corn and soybeans,
as they need very little cooking, so it’s only going to take a few minutes. The
butter and stock will give you a little sauce, and you probably won’t need much
seasoning, but check to make sure. The whole thing will take you about 10
minutes from start to finish, is a great side dish, and will make your vegetarian
friends happy as well as any vegetable phobic young men you might have around.


2018-02-06T05:44:44+00:00February 6th, 2018|

This is lovely as a side dish or as an entrée; it can be vegetarian or have chicken or
shrimp added to it and it’s great all year long. For 8 salad servings, you’ll need:
1 C. uncooked couscous
1 ¼ C. vegetable or chicken broth
2-3 Tb. fresh lime juice
3-4 Tb. olive oil
1 Tsp. cumin
Large dash red pepper flakes
6 green onions, finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1 C. corn kernels (thawed if frozen)
1 can black beans, drained
1 C. shredded chicken (if using)
Salt and pepper to taste
Cook couscous in the broth according to package directions. Let the covered pot
stand for 5 minutes. Meanwhile in a large bowl mix together the lime juice, olive
oil, cumin and pepper flakes. Add all the other ingredients except the couscous
and toss to coat them well. Fluff the couscous with a fork, add to the bowl with
the vegetables, mix well, and season with salt and pepper. Serve as a side with
fish, chicken, or pork or just enjoy on its own…..yum!!


2018-02-06T05:42:54+00:00February 6th, 2018|

This is a classic that will feed a lot of people and warm you up. It’s inexpensive and endlessly
variable. To serve 6, with leftovers, you’ll need:
2 Tb. olive oil
1 large white onion, chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
2 ribs celery, diced
1 red pepper, seeded and diced – optional
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb. green split peas, picked over and rinsed
6 – 8 cups chicken stock
1 lb. diced ham with some fat
Salt, red pepper flakes, dry thyme
In a big soup pot sauté all of your vegetables till they’re soft, then add the garlic and stir it
around for about a minute. Dump in the peas, add the stock and the ham, and bring it all up to
a boil. Turn it down, partially cover the pot, and let it simmer till the peas are soft, at least ½ an
hour. The longer you cook it the thicker it gets, so keep an eye on it. When it’s to your liking add
the seasonings to taste and serve in big bowls with some good bread on the side. Simple and
very, very good. It’s easy to make this vegetarian – just omit the ham and use vegetable stock. If
you have time this is even better when you cook it with a big meaty ham bone; it makes a deep
delicious soup, but takes longer as you need to get the flavor out of the bone and the ham off
the bone. Try it this way when you can. Yum!

White Bean Hand Salad

2018-10-26T21:51:32+00:00March 12th, 2015|

This is a super fun and easy way to enjoy a salad, plus I love the play of soft beans
and crunchy lettuce. This can be served either on endive or wrapped in the
lettuce – whichever way works for you is good. To serve four, you’ll need:
2 cans cannellini beans, well drained
3 oz. good dry salami, sliced into teeny strips
3 Tb. olive oil
¼ C. minced parsley or basil leaves
1 shallot or ¼ small red onion, finely diced
2 Tb. fresh lemon juice
1 Tb. grated lemon peel (optional)
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper
Butter lettuce leaves or endive spears
In a large bowl mix all of the ingredients except the lettuce leaves. When the
salad is all combined and you’ve corrected the seasonings, either mound on the
endive or wrap in the leaves. This is a fun way to eat salad and can be hilarious
after a few glasses of wine. Either way, it’s delicious!

Wild Mushroom Toasts

2018-10-26T21:54:34+00:00March 12th, 2015|

These wild ‘shrooms are so freakin’ delicious that you might not need any other
food. I love them as an appetizer, and the sauté can be used a lot of ways. To
serve four, you’ll need:
2 Tb. olive oil
3-4 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 Lb. mixed wild mushrooms (I love miitake, cremini, and oyster)
½ c. basil leaves, chiffonade
1 small branch rosemary
¼ C. balsamic vinegar
½ C. red wine
Italian parsley, chopped for garnish
Heat the olive oil over medium heat, and then add the garlic, stirring for about a
minute till it picks up some color. Add the ‘shrooms and sauté for about 5
minutes, then lower the heat, add the basil and rosemary, and simmer 5 minutes
more. Add the vinegar and wine and simmer about 5 more minutes or until the
juices have reduced. Serve with good bread and olive oil, or serve on toasted
bread – either way, ‘shroom heaven!!

Tuna Balls In White Sauce

2018-10-26T21:59:16+00:00March 12th, 2015|

This wonderful appetizer comes from Penelope Casas and is sooooo good – plus
it's inexpensive and quite simple. For approx. 12 pieces, you’ll need:
5 Tb. plain dry breadcrumbs
10 Tb. chicken broth
6 Tb. dry white wine
1 can best quality white tuna in water, drained and flaked
1 hardboiled egg, finely chopped
1 raw egg, lightly beaten
3 Tb. parsley, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
Salt, pepper
Flour for dusting, olive oil for the pan
In a bowl, moisten the crumbs with 3 Tb. of chicken broth and 1 Tb. wine. Mix in
the tuna, both eggs, parsley, garlic, salt and pepper. Form this into balls and dust
with flour. Heat the oil in a large skillet and brown the balls on all sides. Add the
rest of the wine and chicken broth and taste for seasoning. Cover and simmer for
30 minutes, adding more chicken broth as needed. These are great to start a
seafood meal or just as a tapa – so good!

Sun Dried Tomato Jam

2018-10-26T21:58:32+00:00March 12th, 2015|

This is a really great thing to have around for impromptu parties; it lasts in the
fridge and is lovely on crostini.
8 oz. oil-packed sun dried tomatoes, chopped and drained, oil saved
½ onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tb. sugar
¼ C. red wine vinegar
1 C. water
¼ C. chicken broth
1 tsp. thyme
salt and pepper to taste
Cook tomatoes, 2 Tb. of the tomato oil, onion and garlic till onions are soft, about
5 to 7 minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients, bring to a boil, then reduce heat
to low, cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Uncover and simmer for about 10 to 15
minutes more or until it has the jam consistency you like. SO good with goat
cheese and bread!!

Go to Top