Monday, October 1, 2012

September's Foodie Pen Pals

This picture should have been very crowded with all the cookies I got from my Foodie Pen Pal,  Lorraine, but they never made it to the picture!!  Along with all these goodies I got yummy chocolate sandwich cookies, the best coconut shortbreads and the delicious scones in the picture, they only made it because of my threats.

Thank you Lorraine, for all the goodies, the homemade cookies, and for sharing the the recipes with me!

The great thing about Lindsay's, from The Lean Green Bean, Foodie Pen Pals is that you actually get two every month.  One that you send goodies to and one that sends to you.  I sent to Leia at Dirty Girl Running, check out her website.......just the kick I needed to start exercising!!

The Lean Green Bean

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

50 Women Game Changers in Food - # 39

Even though our group made it to #50 two weeks ago I will try to post on the ones I missed.  Some because I joined them at number 16 and others because.....well, life got in the way!

At number 39 of the 50 Women Game Changers in Foodis one of my personal favorites - Ina Garten.  She was a former White House nuclear policy analyst, taught her self how to cook by working her way through Julia Child's "The Art of French Cooking" while living in Paris with her husband.  She later owned a specialty food store in the Hamptons and then became a Food Network favorite with her own show The Barefoot Contessa, still very popular today. She has published at least 7 cookbooks with another to be published in October 2012.

I have all her books and all her recipes are great. However, I had no problem deciding which one to choose for this post.  Eli's Asian Salmon has been a longtime favorite in our home.  I guarantee this one is a keeper.
Eli's Asian Salmon
Courtesy of Food Network
  • 2 1/4 pounds center-cut salmon fillet (1 1/2 inches thick)
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon toasted (dark) sesame oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chili paste
  • 1/2 cup sliced scallions (2 scallions)
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic (8 large cloves)
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
  • 1 1/2 cups panko (Japanese bread crumbs


Line an 8 by 12-inch baking pan with aluminum foil. Place the salmon in the pan.

In a mixing cup, combine the soy sauce, rice vinegar, lemon juice, oyster sauce, fish sauce, sesame oil, chili paste, scallions, garlic, and ginger. Pour 1/3 of soy sauce mixture over the salmon fillet. Sprinkle the panko evenly over the fillet. Pour the rest of the soy sauce mixture evenly over the panko. Be sure to soak the panko completely and if any runs off, spoon back onto the salmon. Set aside for 15 minutes, leaving all the sauce in the pan.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Roast the salmon for 18 to 20 minutes, or for about 12 minutes per inch at the thickest part of the salmon. The internal temperature will be 120 degrees F on a meat thermometer when it's done. Remove from the oven, wrap tightly with aluminum foil, and allow to rest for 15 minutes. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Friday, May 18, 2012

50 Women Game Changers in Food - Week 48

This week at number 48 of the 50 Women Game Changers in Food we have Cat Cora.  Not only is she an Iron Chef, has published several cookbooks, is Executive Chef for Bon Appétit magazine, is developing her own talk show, owns two restaurants, is a mother of FOUR,  but is also a great humanitarian.

Picking just one of her recipes was hard.  She had many that I really thought my family would enjoy.  However, this one not only sounded appealing for my boys, the combination of spices with pineapple had me drooling. Mine were more like fajitas than tacos because I used flour tortillas instead of corn, just because I know my family prefers them.  I am happy to announce the results were fabulous!  My husband could not stop raving about the taste of the steak,  the boys really enjoyed them, and my daughter and her hubby said they were a keeper! Can't top that!!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

50 Women Game Changer in Food - Week 38

Darina Allen, co-founder of the of the Ballymaloe Cookery School in Shanagarry, County Cork, Ireland, is #38 on the list of 50 Women Game Changers in Food.  She is the author of several cookbooks and has been called "The Julia Child of Ireland".

In honor of Ms Allen, I made her Winter Leek and Potato Soup.  It is mild and delicious with a
velvety smooth  texture. It's amazingly simple for a weeknight meal and yet elegant enough for your guests.  Definately a keeper!

Friday, February 24, 2012

50 Women Game Changer in Food - Week 35

Edna Lewis, at #35 of the 50 Women Game Changers in Food, was an excellent seamtress, a great cook, and a woman with strong political convictions.  Ms Lewis (as she was known) died at the age of 89, but left us with a treasure of refined southern classics.

"As a child in Virginia, I thought all food tasted delicious. After growing up, I didn't think food tasted the same, so it has been my lifelong effort to try and recapture those good flavors of the past."

And that she did, through her four cookbooks: The Edna Lewis Cookbook, The Taste of Country Cooking, In Pursuit of Flavor, and The Gift of Southern Cooking. 
It was difficult to chose one of her recipes for this post. They all seemed really wonderful but I was looking for a simple side dish to accompany some spicy grilled shrimp.  These potatoes were buttery and delicious but not overpowering.....the perfect choice!



2 lbs boiling potatoes
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth


Preheat oven to 425°F with rack in middle.

Peel potatoes and thinly slice (about 1/16 inch thick), then toss with butter, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.  Spread evenly in a 2-quart shallow baking dish and add broth.  Cover tightly with foil and bake 30 minutes.  Uncover and bake until top is well-browned and most of stock is absorbed, 30 to 35 minutes more.

For more recipes by Edna Lewis visit:

Val - More Than Burnt Toast
Joanne - Eats Well With Others
Taryn - Have Kitchen Will Feed
Susan - The Spice Garden
Claudia - A Seasonal Cook in Turkey
Heather - girlichef
Miranda - Mangoes and Chutney
Jeanette - Healthy Living
April - Abby Sweets
Katie - Making Michael Pollan Proud
Mary - One Perfect Bite
Kathleen -Bake Away with Me
Viola - The Life is Good Kitchen
Sue - The View from Great Island
Barbara - Movable Feasts
Kathleen - Gonna Want Seconds
Amy - Beloved Green
Jeanette - Healthy Living
Linda - Ciao Chow Linda
Linda A - There and Back Again

  • French Fridays with Dorie - Cheese-Topped Onion Soup

    My family really enjoys french onion soup, so I knew they would the best judges for this recipe. The verdict....excellent!! This is a very simple dish to make and yet the results will truly impress you.

    As part of French Fridays with Dorie we are cooking our way through Dorie Greenspan's Around My French Table.   Join us next week as we continue our journey.

    Sunday, January 29, 2012

    Daring Bakers make Scones a/k/a Biscuits

    Audax Artifex was our January 2012 Daring Bakers’ host. Aud worked tirelessly to master light and fluffy scones (a/k/a biscuits) to help us create delicious and perfect batches in our own kitchens!  His recipe for basic scones (see below) was very simple and fail proof.  It was a thrill to say I had made them from scratch!!  Thanks Audax!!

    Basic Scones (a.k.a. Basic Biscuits)
    Servings: about eight 2-inch (5 cm) scones or five 3-inch (7½ cm) scones
Recipe can be doubled
    1 cup (240 ml) (140 gm/5 oz) plain (all-purpose) flour

    2 teaspoons (10 ml) (10 gm) (⅓ oz) fresh baking powder

    ¼ teaspoon (1¼ ml) (1½ gm) salt

    2 tablespoons (30 gm/1 oz) frozen grated butter (or a combination of lard and butter)

    approximately ½ cup (120 ml) cold milk
    1 tablespoon milk, for glazing the tops of the scones

    1. Preheat oven to very hot 475°F/240°C/gas mark 9.

    2. Triple sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl. (If your room temperature is very hot refrigerate the sifted ingredients until cold.)

    3. Rub the frozen grated butter (or combination of fats) into the dry ingredients until it resembles very coarse bread crumbs with some pea-sized pieces if you want flaky scones or until it resembles coarse beach sand if you want tender scones.

    4. Add nearly all of the liquid at once into the rubbed-in flour/fat mixture and mix until it just forms a sticky dough (add the remaining liquid if needed). The wetter the dough the lighter the scones (biscuits) will be!

    5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board, lightly flour the top of the dough. To achieve an even homogeneous crumb to your scones knead very gently about 4 or 5 times (do not press too firmly) the dough until it is smooth. To achieve a layered effect in your scones knead very gently once (do not press too firmly) then fold and turn the kneaded dough about 3 or 4 times until the dough has formed a smooth texture. (Use a floured plastic scraper to help you knead and/or fold and turn the dough if you wish.)

    6. Pat or roll out the dough into a 6 inch by 4 inch rectangle by about ¾ inch thick (15¼ cm by 10 cm by 2 cm thick). Using a well-floured 2-inch (5 cm) scone cutter (biscuit cutter), stamp out without twisting six 2-inch (5 cm) rounds, gently reform the scraps into another ¾ inch (2 cm) layer and cut two more scones (these two scones will not raise as well as the others since the extra handling will slightly toughen the dough). Or use a well-floured sharp knife to form squares or wedges as you desire.

    7. Place the rounds just touching on a baking dish if you wish to have soft-sided scones or place the rounds spaced widely apart on the baking dish if you wish to have crisp-sided scones. Glaze the tops with milk if you want a golden colour on your scones or lightly flour if you want a more traditional look to your scones.

    8. Bake in the preheated very hot oven for about 10 minutes (check at 8 minutes since home ovens at these high temperatures are very unreliable) until the scones are well risen and are lightly coloured on the tops. The scones are ready when the sides are set.

    9. Immediately place onto cooling rack to stop the cooking process, serve while still warm.

    French Fridays with Dorie - Broth-Braised Potatoes

    This wonderfully rustic dish can go nicely with any roasted meat or poultry.  Just a few staple ingredients and you're done. I used a variety of fingerling potatoes and just before serving I drizzled them with the concentrated broth. The aroma in your kitchen will bring everyone to the dinner table on time....Bon Appétit!

    As part of French Fridays with Dorie we are cooking our way through Dorie Greenspan's Around My French Table.  Next week we'll be making Gorgonzola-Apple Quiche.... join us.

    Friday, January 27, 2012

    50 Women Game Changers in Food - Week 32

    Tracey Ryder and Carole Topalian are the stars for week 32 of 50 Women Game Changers in Food.  They co-founded Edible Communities which publishes over 70 magazine across the country and Vancouver, Canada. Each focusing on regional foods, growers, and chefs. They collaborated on their first cookbook Edible: A Celebration of Local Foods, written by Tracy and all photographs were taken by Carole (her true calling).  It's a work of art.

    The moment I read this recipe I knew it was the one for this week.  It was extremely simple to make and the flavors were intense.  It's on the spicy side but you can tone it down be reducing the amount of cayenne pepper. I love spicy foods but my husband prefers it a little milder.  Either way it's a delicious dish and makes a great presentation without a lot of work.  The nutmeg should definitely be fresh, it blends in perfectly and the aroma is wonderful.  Enjoy!

    Sullivan's Island Shrimp Bog 
    Courtesy of Tracey Ryder and Carole Topalian (Edible: A Celebration of Local Foods)

    Serves 6


    Saturday, January 21, 2012

    50 Women Game Changers in Food - Week 31

    Week 31 takes us to the lady from "down under", Donna Hay.  Known as the Australian Martha Stewart, she is the countries leading food editor and writer of several cookbooks.  She began as food editor for Marie Claire and now edits her own magazine Donna Hay.  Most of her recipes are simple, not complicated, and delicious.  These fish cakes are really tasty and can be made on the spur of the moment.  You can get really creative with them too; you can add grated onions and parsley, or your favorite spices.  Serve as an appetizer, for lunch or a light dinner.  These are definitely a keeper!!

    Lemony Fish Cakes


    • 1 lb. (500 g) mashed cooked potatoes
    • 7 oz. (200 g) flaked salmon
    • 2 tsp. finely grated lemon rind
    • 1 lightly beaten egg
    • Pinch salt and pepper

    Combine roughly mashed potatoes with salmon, lemon rind, egg, salt and pepper. Shape into patties and fry in vegetable oil for 2-3 minutes per side. Serve with mayonnaise and lemon wedges.

    For more recipes by Donna Hay please visit the rest of the group:

    Veronica - My Catholic Kitchen

    Friday, January 20, 2012

    French Fridays With Dorie - Quatre-Quarts

    Dorie's version of Quatre-Quarts (pound cake) is crumbly and delicious.  A very simple and fast recipe.  A few simple ingredients and in 30 minutes I had made a wonderful treat for my family.  For a little kick I added 2 tablespoons of spiced rum...Salut! 

    As part of French Fridays with Dorie we are cooking our way through Dorie Greenspan's Around My French Table.  Next week we'll be making Broth Braised Potatoes.....join us.

    Saturday, January 14, 2012

    FFWD - M. Jacques' Armagnac Chicken

    Monsieur Jacques' Armagnac Chicken is simple and delicious. It takes just a few ingredients to make what I believe will become a family favorite: chicken, onions, potatoes, carrots, spices, brandy or cognac.  Saute the vegetables slightly in a dutch oven, add the whole chicken and place in the oven for an hour. Can it get any easier than that?!

    Since I joined French Fridays with Dorie I have learned so much; from how to "spatchcock" a cornish hen to how to stuff a pumpkin to make the most delicious appetizer, but this dish has to be not only one of the tastiest but the easiest to make. Next week we'll be making Quatre-Quarts (pound cake) from Dorie Greenspan's Around My French Table.

    Monday, January 9, 2012

    Week #29 Betty Fussell

    At number 29 of the 50 Women Game Changers in Food, is Betty Fussell, an American writer. She has written 11 books covering from silent movie screen star Mabel Normand, to American beef, to seasonal food, to the history of corn.  She has lectured at state fairs, universities, museums, and a wide variety of other venues all over the country. She's really quite an interesting lady and you can read more about her at her website

    "So let’s treasure and pleasure it while we may, with all our senses flashing a red alert of joy. To look, taste, touch, savor — nothing does that better than sex but food."
                                                                           -Betty Fussell

    While doing my research I came across her chili recipe which is truly off the charts!!
    You can make it just as the recipe states...

    ...or add cheese to your hearts content. Enjoy!!

    2 tablespoons olive oil

    ½ to 1 medium onion, chopped

    3 to 4 cloves garlic, chopped

    1 teaspoon oregano

    1 to 2 teaspoons ground red chili (medium hot)

    ½ teaspoon ground cumin

    1 pound ground round or chuck

    1 can (16 to 24 ounces) chopped tomatoes

    1 can (1 pound) red kidney beans

    Salt & black pepper to taste

    Heat olive oil in a large sauté pan, add the onion, garlic and spices and cook until the onion softens. Add the meat and stir well until it’s lightly cooked.  Add the tomatoes and their juices, add beans with their liquid. Add seasonings and taste thoroughly.  
    Adjust spicing to your taste. Depending on the heat of the chili you use, if you want more heat, add some cayenne or Tabasco. You can also add Worcestershire Sauce.
    If you need more liquid, add vegetable juice or water, plus a beef bouillon cube. If you want a thicker stew, add tomato paste. If you want a chewier meat, use cubed beef from the chuck and brown it just as you do ground meat.
    You can use any kind of beans, like pinto, black, navy. To cook dried beans: Cover beans with water 2 inches above the height of the beans. Bring to the boil, boil rapidly uncovered for 2 minutes. Put on a lid, remove the pan from heat and let sit for an hour or more. When ready to use, add more water (if needed) to  cover about 1 inch above the beans. Bring liquid to the simmer, cover partly with a lid, and simmer until the beans are tender (1 to 2 hours, depending on the beans). If desired, add chopped green or sweet red peppers, chopped fresh tomatoes, chopped fresh chilies like jalapeno or Serrano. Don’t salt the beans until nearly done or it makes them tough.
    Anything can go into the pot, like salt pork, chopped sausages, pork on the bone, lamb on the bone, whatever you have that will withstand long slow cooking.
    Serves 1 big guy, 2 medium guys, or 3 girls

    For more recipes by Betty Fussell, please visit the rest of the gang: