29 April 2014

Beer Braised Shrimp and Sausage with Louisiana Salsa and Rice

... Cajun 'holy trinity' is the base for a chilly fresh salsa ...

Starting with a chop of celery, green pepper, and red onion, one can put together a nice little shrimp and sausage slurry that sure makes for a nice spicy supper ... meal made in thirty minutes while listening to pre-game chatter, ball game on at first pitch,  and feet up with bowls of Beer Braised Shrimp with Louisiana Salsa and Rice sitting in our laps ...  go Red Sox !!!

27 April 2014

A Burger Revelation ...

... a lightened up burger that tastes like fast food Thanksgiving ... in a good way! ...

A few years ago, my blogging friend Brenda had a cook book give away that I had the good fortune to win ... a copy of Rachael Ray's cook book called Rachael Ray's look + cook came my way and soon I was flagging recipes that looked wonderful.  I've used the cookbook a lot over the years and have never been disappointed. Usually, in fact, I really like the results of Rachael's recipes. The only thing is ... they can be pretty caloric. Rachael likes her butter and cheese and gooey sauces. This burger recipe that I found the other day is no exception, but oh, WHAT A BURGER!

Thanks Brenda!

25 April 2014

A Little Cake-y


... a pretty little patty pan of a pastry ... but, what's under that crust, you ask ? ....

20 April 2014

An Aside ...

Are these like fingerprints or something? Does each chicken excrete oils that 'grease the way', so to speak ? Whatever the answer to these questions, these eggs looked so interesting after taking a bath in egg dye. And it got me thinking ... about the random nature of existence and the cycles of life and the seeming finality of death and re-birth and egg salad and deviled eggs and why they're called deviled eggs when they come from something so perfect. I should stop now, but you do see where I was going with all this free association don't you?

Happy Easter ... XO!

19 April 2014

Saturday ...Projects and Pasta

... Penne with Roasted Purple Onions and Buttermilk Blue Cheese ...

17 April 2014

Cooking With Nigel - Baked Apple Chicken Sausages and Golden Mash

I'm not quite through with my fascination with bangers and mash, as you can see. This week's version highlights apple chicken sausages that are browned and baked with onions, apple slices, fresh thyme leaves, black pepper, and a brown sugar sweetened gravy of broth and dark beer.

13 April 2014

Red Velvet Cake

... I will NEVER be a cake decorator, but boy, was it fun puttering over this one! ...

12 April 2014

Lyonnaise Pork Chops

... thick pork chops, mustard onion slather, crispy bread crumb topping, easy dinner ...

11 April 2014

IHCC - Bangers and Mash Nigel's Way

Made a typically Brit meal with Nigel Slater last evening ... well, sort of. Certainly a plate of bangers and mash is typical pub fare in the UK. Nigel gives it a bit of a spin, though. I was intrigued! So, it was carrot mash and bangers browned and baked with a lemon honey mustard glaze. Added a chunk of pumpernickel bread on the side and a good glass of wine (no beer for me, but perhaps for SB!) and we had a tasty 'stick to the ribs' supper!

10 April 2014

An Aside ... Springtime Parsnips

The frost is out of the ground ... and the parsnips were dug today. Peeled and fried in a gob of butter, they softened and caramelized just a bit. Tonight, we have nature's sweet treat. They seem a little payback for all the cold frosty nights of winter ... nights that transformed bland crunchy roots to sweet Springtime candy.

07 April 2014

Sweet and Sour Cucumber with Fresh Dill and a Kugel ....

This evening, SB and I are headed to the regional Ahavas Achim Temple to celebrate at a potluck and interfaith discussion of Spring festivals - specifically Easter and Passover. The potluck is a vegetarian affair, so I'm playing by the rules and trying a couple recipes from my Jewish cookbook ... the cucumber pickle is completely tasty and I've paired it with Russian Pumpernickel slices for an appetizer/salad offering.

... simple fresh green crunchy ingredients ... perfect for waking up the taste buds ...

The Kugel Yerushalayim is a complete stretch for me. My niece, Beth is always raving about a kugel that she makes for her family celebrations, so I was encouraged to try this recipe. It smells fantastic ... but the jury's out until I see just how many folks actually chow down on it. I'm actually having doubts about it as the sugar content is quite high and it has this funky cooked sugar and olive oil component that just feels wrong to me, but one must follow the recipe when one is in unknown territory ... and I have never made this classic of Jewish cuisine.

Sweet and Sour Cucumber with Fresh Dill


4 small cucumbers, tipped and sliced thinly
1/2 large sweet white onion, sliced into thin half-moons
a generous pinch of kosher salt
3 tbsp. sugar
5 tbsp. white wine vinegar
2 tbsp. cold water
3 generous tbsp. fresh chopped dill

fresh pumpernickel bread, sliced into thin half slices

1. Combine the cucumbers and onion slices and toss with your hands to separate the slices and mix the two.

2. Sprinkle the salt and toss again. Set aside for ten minutes in a cool spot.

3. Mix the sugar, vinegar, and cold water, stirring to dissolve the sugar.

4. Pour the brine over the vegetables and add the chopped dill. Toss to coat all the veg and distribute the dill.

5. Cover and chill for a few hours.

6. Serve the pickle with slices of fresh pumpernickel bread, as a salad or appetizer.

... time machine ...

Should have left the kugel at home ... it was too thin, sticky and too crisped -a complete fail. However, I've NEVER met a more gracious group of people who assured me that it was just fine! Haha! Guess I'll be taking lessons from Elaine, who brought the most luscious apple kugel that it made me close my eyes and smile! It was truly a revelation!

Oh well ... the pickle was totally tasty!

04 April 2014

Recipe Flashbacks - Flammekuchen

... Sun-drenched spoils from last night's supper ... super crunched in the oven ... sublime ! ...

03 April 2014

Maple Walnut Quick Bread -

... Oh! What a maple glaze ... sticky crunch atop a maple and orange quick bread ...be still, my heart!

01 April 2014

Gnocchi with Spinach and Dolcelatte ... Cooking with Nigel ... and Potatoes

... Homemade gnocchi, double the spinach, and a creamy cheese sauce. What's not to like? ...