Sunday, December 23, 2007

Chateaubriand with Portobello Mushrooms and Madeira Wine au Jus

Beef tenderloin - or filet mignon - is hard to beat for taste, tenderness, or texture.


1 to 1 1/2 Lbs center-cut beef fillet
2 large portobello mushrooms, washed & unpeeled
2 cloves garlic
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon brandy
½ cup (4 fl oz) Madeira Wine (or red wine if you prefer)
salt and freshly milled black pepper


For this recipe, you will need a large cast iron or steel frying pan or skillet - one without a wooden or plastic handle that can go inside the oven. If you don't have one, use a medium size, lightly oiled heavy based roasting pan for the oven cooking, and a frying pan for the stove top cooking.

Preheat the oven to 445F. If you are using a different pan for the oven cooking, put it in the oven to get really hot.

Unwrap the chateaubriand and season with freshly milled black pepper.

Put the pan that you are using on the stove over a medium/high heat and add 2 tablespoons of oil. Allow it to get very hot until it just starts to smoke.

Keeping the heat on high, add the beef fillet to the pan and quickly sear on one side, and then the other. This should only take a minute or two at the most to achieve a crusty golden seal.

Now, put the pan straight into the oven (or transfer to the preheated oven pan) on the middle shelf and roast for 10 to 15 minutes depending on how rare you like it.

While that's happening, cut the mushrooms into thick slices. If you are using the garlic (some folk prefer not to mix romance with garlic!), chop it finely. Now pour yourself a glass of wine and relax for a few minutes....this chateaubriand recipe virtually cooks itself!

When the chateaubriand is ready, remove it from the oven and carefully transfer to a warmed plate and cover loosely with a piece of tin foil. Then leave it to rest for 15minutes.

Reheat the stove top pan or skillet with about 2 tablespoons of the fat and juices from the beef pan. When it's hot, add a knob of butter.

Add the garlic to the pan and quickly stir through the hot fat to color slightly. Then add the sliced mushrooms and a seasoning of salt and freshly milled black pepper.

Now, sauté the mushrooms for about 2 minutes turning frequently adding a little more oil if the pan becomes too dry.

Turn the heat up to maximum and deglaze the pan by adding the brandy. If you are feeling like a professional chef by now ;-) and you are cooking with gas, tilt the pan towards the open flame to let it flambé.

Once the brandy has all but evaporated, turn the heat down to low and add the Madeira wine. Allow it to simmer gently and reduce for about a minute. Check the seasoning.


Carve the beef fillet in thick slices and arrange on a warm serving plate. Pile the mushrooms on top and drizzle the Madeira jus over.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Spicy Buttermilk Fried Chicken

There are few things better than crispy, spiced fried chicken served up with Parkerhouse rolls slathered with fresh creamery butter, corn, mashed potatoes, gravy, and a nice green veggie or cauliflower. This recipe takes a little planning, but OH - is it EVER so good!!

3 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup TABASCO
3 teaspoons salt, divided
1 (2 1/2- to 3-pound) chicken, cut up into 8 pieces
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
A small dash of Cardamon
Canola oil for deep-frying

Combine buttermilk, TABASCO, and 1 teaspoon of the salt in a large bowl or large resealable plastic bag and mix well. Add the chicken and cover bowl or seal bag; refrigerate for 6 to 24 hours.

Combine flour, remaining 2 teaspoons salt, garlic powder, onion powder,cardoman, and pepper in a shallow dish. Remove chicken pieces from marinade and allow excess buttermilk to drip off. Dredge chicken pieces in flour mixture and let chicken sit for 10 minutes.

Add about 1-inch of oil to a large, deep skillet. Attach a deep-fry thermometer and, over medium-high heat, bring oil to 350°F.

Fry chicken in batches of four, turning occasionally, until golden brown and cooked through, about 10 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to a wire rack set on a baking sheet.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Outback Steakhouse Bushman Honey Whole Wheat Bread

This bread is excellent, but you'll need to be patient with the rises. It is very slow on the first and second rise, but you will be VERY pleased with the final result.

It should be served hot - or at least warm on the last legs of cooling - with a meal. It is a very soft bread with a sweetish taste (the honey), a nice soft crust, and a mild, yet robust flavor. The texture, even the crust, should be quite soft. A nice sharp serrated bread knife is used for the best slices. It has lots of potential for making it into a rye - especially Russian rye bread - with the addition of finely ground caraway and/or kalonji seeds. Using this bread for the base for a roast beef or pastrami sandwich will put you in culinary heaven. This bread is among THE BEST you will ever taste. It's delicate- yet ambitions; hearty - yet light. It has a flavor like you've probably never had - that is unless you've eaten at the Outback Restaurant.

Recipe: Yields 4 medium-sized loaves or 8 small loaves or make a half recipe for one 6” loaf in a medium sized glass bowl.

2 cups whole wheat flour
2 cups bread flour (up to 2-1/2 cups if needed)
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa
2 teaspoons instant coffee
1 teaspoon caramel color (*)
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
1/2 cup honey
2 tablespoons butter -- softened
1 1/2 cups warm water

* If caramel color is not available, substitute food coloring by adding to the warm water before adding it to the rest of the ingredients:
75 drops red food coloring
45 drops blue food coloring
30 drops yellow food coloring

1.BREAD MACHINE METHOD: Add all of the ingredients for the dough in the exact order listed into the pan of your machine. Set it on "knead" and when the machine begins to mix the dough, combine the food coloring with 1/4 cup of water and drizzle it into the mixture as it combines. After the dough is created let it rest to rise for an hour or so. Then remove it from the pan and go to step #3.

2. MIXER METHOD: In a mixing bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour and 2 cups of the bread flour with the cocoa, sugar, coffee, caramel color, yeast and salt. Add the butter, honey and water... With the mixer set on low speed, mix with the dough hook for 3 minutes, using a spatula to keep scraping down the sides of the mixer to dry the dry ingredients into the wet. Turn the mixer speed to medium and mix 1-2 minutes or until the dough begins to come together to form a ball, adding more flour if necessary up to the additional 1/2 cup.

NOTE! The dough will be very wet and sticky, but try not to add too much flour or else the bread will be very dry and crumbly.

Liberally flour the work surface and turn the dough out onto the flour. Loosely cover the dough and let it rest for at least 10 minutes. Gently knead the dough until it barely comes together into a soft tacky ball. Transfer the dough to a well-oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour.

After 1 hour, remove the cover and gently stretch and fold the dough. Replace the plastic wrap cover and let the dough finish rising until almost doubled, about 45-50 minutes.

3. When the dough has risen to about double in size, punch it down and divide it into 4 even portions, by dividing dough in half and then dividing those halves in half (and then once more if 8 very small loaves are desired.). Form the portions into tubular shaped loaves. (If desired, sprinkle the entire surface of the loaves with a small bit of fine grind cornmeal.

Place the loaves on a parchment-lined large baking sheet. Cover the loaves with a proof box or loosely with lightly greased plastic wrap. Let the dough rise once more for 45-50 minutes. OR – use a 6” bowl for 1-loaf, half recipe

4. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Uncover the dough and slash the tops lengthwise if desired. Bake for 23-24 minutes. Loaves should begin to darken slightly on top when done, and the internal temperature should reach 190-195 degrees F. on an instant read thermometer. Cool on a wire rack until still just barely warm. Serve with a sharp serrated bread knife and whipped butter on the side.

  • shaboomskitchen

  • This variation is compliments of Check out her great web site at

    Saturday, August 11, 2007

    Boneless Pork Loin Roast with Apple Horseradish Sauce

    To me, pork IS the 'other white meat.' Where would we be without ribs, chops, boneless loin, tenderloins, sausage? This is a delightful version of a boneless pork loin center cut roast.


    1 boneless Pork Loin - Center Cut - about 3 pounds
    1 cup chunky applesauce
    1/2 cup red currant jelly or raspberry jelly
    2 teaspoons horseradish


    Heat oven to 325°F. Place roast on rack in shallow roasting pan. Do not cover. Roast to an internal temperature of 150°F.

    Meanwhile, make sauce by heating applesauce, jelly and horseradish in small saucepan only until blended.

    When roast reaches 150°F. spread about 1/4 cup of sauce over roast. Continue roasting about 15 minutes to glaze roast and until internal temperature reaches 160°F. for medium doneness. Serve remaining sauce with roast.

    Serve with a twice baked potato, fresh-steamed green beans with Hollandaise Sauce or asparagus, baked sweet potato, cauliflower....actually, serve with whatever you like. :-)

    Saturday, August 04, 2007


    Ethnic soups or stews are always a nice change from the everyday recipes that we always seem to make. This Bosnian recipe is sure to please. You can also used leftover lamb.

    2 lbs. boned shoulder of lamb, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
    2 oz. lard
    1 onion, finely chopped
    2 lbs. cabbage, trimmed, core removed and roughly chopped
    Freshly ground pepper
    3 tomatoes, peeled and sliced
    2 cloves garlic, crushed
    1-2 c. (8-16 fl. oz.) dry white wine
    1 TBS. paprika

    1. Brown the lamb in the lard, add the onions and sauté them until they are soft.
    2. Put the lamb and onion mixture in the bottom of a casserole dish, arrange the cabbage over it and season with salt and pepper. Lay the tomato slices and garlic on top.
    3. Cover the casserole and cook over low heat for 2-3 hours. Add the wine gradually while the stew is cooking.
    4. 30-minutes before the end of the cooking time sprinkle the stew with paprika. Do not stir the stew.
    5. Serve hot with chunks of crusty bread and generous amounts of chilled dry white wine.

    Friday, August 03, 2007

    Fried Cucumber Slices With Tomato

    When a cooking/baking cohort suggested fried cucumbers, I nearly had a culinary siezure. I stand before you in naked humility. This recipe has been slightly modified; the end result was awesome!! Sometimes a recipe can not be perceived by the ingredients (as I found out); this one is a keeper.

    Fried Cucumber Slices

    1 Medium size Cucumber (9” – 10”) – skin on
    Beaten egg
    Parmesan Cheese
    Garlic Powder
    2 TBS Butter
    2 TBS Olive oil
    1 Small tomato

    Serves 2

    Have two separate bowls or dishes with flour – the first for dredging - no spice added. The second, mixed well with the garlic powder and parmesan.

    Slice cucumber to ¼” rounds. Dry both sides with paper towel. Dredge in flour and shake off excess. Dip in egg mixture. Dredge once again in second bowl of flour (spiced/flavored)flour – shake off excess.

    Fry in the olive oil and melted butter on medium heat, and turn only once. The finished cucumber should be golden and still have a little crunch to it – not soggy. Drain on paper towel, and cool.

    Once the slices are cooled, top with thin (1/8”) slices of fresh tomato. Serve these cold without broiling them. Before serving, spritz or sprinkle a few drops of Balsamic vinegar on each slice. You can also do the same procedure and ingredients using eggplant or zucchini squash.

    This is an excellent accoutrement to serve with a lamb roast, along with scrubbed, whole, oven baked new potatoes that have been coated with a top quality olive oil sprinkled with garlic powder and baked in a covered pan

    Thursday, August 02, 2007

    Baked Stuffed Eggplant

    A delicious recipe, and easy to make. Glenna's recipe for the Chimichirri sauce (following post) also works wonders.

    3 (1/2-pound) eggplants
    1 teaspoon salt, plus 1 teaspoon
    1 tablespoon olive oil, plus 3 tablespoons
    2 cups chopped onion
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    1 pound lean ground lamb
    1/3 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
    3 tablespoons minced fresh mint leaves
    3 plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut into julienne strips
    1 cup crumbled feta cheese

    Halve 2 of the eggplants lengthwise, score their pulp deeply with a sharp knife, being careful not to pierce the skins, and with a grapefruit knife scoop or tablespoon, scoop out the pulp, reserving it and leaving 1/2-inch-thick shells.

    Sprinkle the shells with 1 teaspoon salt and invert them on paper towels to drain for 15 to 30 minutes. Cut the reserved pulp and the remaining whole eggplant into 1/2-inch pieces, in a colander toss the pieces with the remaining salt, and let them drain for 15 to 30 minutes.

    Rinse and pat the shells dry with paper towels, brush them with 1 tablespoon of the oil, and broil them on the rack of a broiler pan, skin side down, under a preheated broiler about 4 inches from the heat until they are tender, about 5 minutes.

    In a skillet, heat the remaining 3 tablespoons oil over moderately high heat until it is hot but not smoking. Saute the onion and the garlic until translucent. Add the ground lamb and the eggplant pieces stirring, until meat loses all color and eggplant is tender.

    Remove the skillet from the heat, stir in the parsley, mint, tomatoes, feta, and salt and pepper to taste, and divide the filling among the shells, mounding it. Broil the stuffed eggplants in a large flameproof baking dish for 5 minutes, or until the filling is bubbling and golden.

    Saturday, June 30, 2007


    In a quest to find something different in flavor and foodie excitement, I was fortunate to discover this exquisite recipe by Glenna and Gene. I thought - well - it's 'interesting' but I wasn't sure it would work for me and my spouse's birthday party. WOW!! Was I ever wrong. This is one of the most exciting dishes I have eaten in years. Be sure to visit Glenna's web site - (Glenna's site is at the right - "Food Fit For Royalty") you will be pleasantly surprised. The left photo is Glenna's Chimichurri sauce over lamb chops; the right photo is Chimichurri over steak.

    Chimichurri is a thick herb sauce that in Argentina is typically served with steak. The first column (bold) contain the quantities for a doubled recipe; the second column contains the normal quantities for one recipe.

    3 1-1/2 lb trimmed flank steak (We used sirloin steak)
    3 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
    1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
    1 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
    ½ 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
    2 1 large garlic clove
    3 1-1/2 cups fresh cilantro
    3 1-1/2 cups fresh flat-leaf parsley
    ½ 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
    2/3 1/3 cup olive oil
    ½ 1/4 teaspoon cayenne

    Preheat broiler.

    Pat steak dry. Stir together 2 teaspoons salt, cumin, coriander, and pepper in a small bowl and rub mixture onto both sides of steak. Broil steak on a broiler pan or on a char-broiler about 4 inches from heat 6 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer to a cutting board and let stand 5 minutes.

    Meanwhile, with motor running, add garlic to a food processor and finely chop. Add cilantro, parsley, vinegar, oil, cayenne, and remaining 1 teaspoon salt, then pulse until herbs are finely chopped. Holding a knife at a 45-degree angle (bias), slice the steak thinly. Serve topped with sauce.

    Wednesday, June 20, 2007

    Bruschetta with Diced tomato and Globe basil

    This recipe is from one of my very dearest friends in CT. Thanks Harriet. This is THE best!! For a light dinner or a snack. For a light dinner, use the whole loaf cut lengthwise. For a snack, do individual thick slices.

    1 Large crusty loaf of Italian or French bread

    2-4 large garlic cloves minced
    3 medium-sized tomatoes diced to ¼ inch
    1 Bunch of (1/2 cup) globe basil chopped
    ½ Cup quality olive oil
    ¼ Cup Romano, Asiago or Parmesan cheese grated
    Garlic Salt and pepper

    2 Cups mozzarella cheese

    Slice bread in half lengthwise. Combine the next six ingredients in a large bowl. Spread on bread. Top with 2 Cups mozzarella cheese. Bake 20-minutes at 320F. until cheese sizzles.

    We made this recently and added oven roasted B/S chicken breast 1/2" dice; it was awesome!! You can add just about anything you like - sausage, pepperoni - and what you get is a French bread pizza. One major recommendation is to use mozzarella cheese sliced from a block as opposed to the pre-packaged shredded. You'll get a much more flavorful meal. If there are any bruschetta slices left over, they freeze beautifully for another meal or snack, but I seriously doubt there will be leftovers. This is the last meal that I had the privilege of sharing with Alan and Harriet. Alan has since gone to the Lord.

    Tuesday, April 24, 2007

    Cheesecake With Chocolate Graham Cracker Crust

    There is nothing that beats a well-tuned cheesecake for dessert. This recipe will have you kicking up your heels, and wondering why you haven't tried making a cheesecake before now!!


    1 Package of graham crackers (there are normally three packets in a box)
    3/4 stick butter melted
    1/2 cup sugar
    2 TBS Bakers unsweetened chocolate powder

    Crush the graham crackers finely. You can get this result easily by first crushing by hand in the sealed packet as best you can, then adding them to the bowl of a food processor with the steel blade and run it until you have very fine crumbs. In a separate bowl, add the crumbs, sugar, chocolate, add the melted butter. Mix well.

    NOTE: A dash of ground cardaman and or cinnamon to the crust will add a unique taste.

    Pour the crumb mixture in a 9" springform pan. Press crumbs along bottom (and sides -optional) so it is firmly packed.

    Bake at 375F. for 8-minutes. Remove from oven and let completely cool.

    Cheesecake Filling

    4 eight oz. packages cream cheese room temperature
    1-1/3 cups sugar
    5 eggs room temperature
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1 1/2 tsp Hazelnut syrup (Optional)
    1-1/2 teaspoon lemon, lime, or orange zest (optional)
    2 Tablespoons heavy cream
    2-2/3 Tablespoons AP Flour

    Using the paddle attachment in a stand mixer, beat cream cheese until creamy and smooth. Add sugar, mix. Add eggs, mix slowly 1 egg at a time. Scrape sides of the bowl between each egg addition. Add flavorings and heavy cream; mix well. Add flour and mix slowly until well blended; but do not over beat once added. Pour mixture into pre-baked crust.

    Bake in preheated 325F. oven in a water bath, 1 hour and 30 minutes. When finished baking, the middle 1" or 2" will still be wobbly. Turn off oven, leaving cake inside with oven door wedged open about 1 inch. Let sit in there for an additional 1 hr. This will complete the baking cycle. Remove from oven, set on wire rack, loosen outer ring but do not remove the ring. Let cool, then refrigerate for several hours (six or more) or overnight. Remove the ring.

    Serve topped with your favorite sliced fruit, and/or chocolate whipped cream.


    If you want a perfect cheesecake with NO cracks on the top, cover the outside of the springform pan bottom with aluminum foil and place the foil-bottomed springform in a pan of hot water before baking. The steam from the water eliminates cracks in the cake. Be sure there is room (an inch or so) between the foil covered springform pan and the sides of the pan of water it has been placed in for baking. The water should come up about 1/2 to 2/3 of the way of the springform pan.

    Also, if you want a perfectly white top to the cheesecake, cover loosely with a piece of aluminum foil AFTER the initial 45-minutes baking time; leave the foil on for the remainder of the baking time.

    Thursday, April 19, 2007

    KFC Cole Slaw

    This is the real thing. Delicious. :-)


    8 Cups Cabbage Finely Chopped
    ¼ Cup Carrots Shredded
    2 TBS Onion Minced
    1/4 cup cucumber diced (optional)
    1/3 Cup Sugar
    ½ Tsp Salt
    1/8 Tsp Pepper
    ¼ Cup Milk
    ½ Cup Real Mayo
    ¼ Cup Buttermilk
    1 ½ TBS White Vinegar
    2 ½ TBS Lemon Juice


    Chop/shred cabbage, carrots, and cucumber into pieces the size of rice

    Combine sugar, salt, pepper, milk, mayo, buttermilk, vinegar, and lemon juice in a separate bowl. Add the cabbage, carrots, cucumber and onion; mix well. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2-4 hours

    Thursday, March 15, 2007

    English Lemon Shortbread Scones

    Brian Wood is a frequent and prolific contributor to the King Arthur Baking Circle. His recipes have always proven reliable, consistent, and delicious. To find more of Brian's recipes, and more - visit the Circle, and find thousands of recipes from many of the loyal members and contributors, as well as many wonderful recipes by King Arthur personnel.

    Lemon is a flavorful complement to this traditional buttery shortbread recipe that is remarkably easy to make.

    Preparation time: 15 min Baking time: 30 min Standing time: 30 min
    Yield: 5 dozen cookies

    Shortbread Ingredients:

    2 cups butter, softened
    1 cup sugar
    1/4 cup lemon juice
    4 tsp freshly grated lemon peel
    4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

    Glaze Ingredients:
    1 cup powdered sugar
    2 tbsp butter, softened
    2 tbsp lemon juice

    Garnish Ingredients:
    1 tbsp freshly grated lemon peel

    Heat oven to 350°F. Combine all shortbread ingredients except flour in large bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy.
    Reduce speed to low; add flour. Beat until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
    Press dough evenly into lightly greased 15x10x1 jelly-roll pan. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool completely.

    Combine all glaze ingredients in small bowl with wire whisk until smooth. Spread thin layer of glaze over cooled shortbread; sprinkle with 1 tablespoon lemon peel, if desired. Let stand 30 minutes to set. Cut into 2-1/2 x 1-inch strips.

    Another of Brian's wonderful recipes:

    Blueberry-Pecan Muffins

    1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
    1/4 cup sugar
    1 1/2 tsp baking powder
    1/2 tsp salt3/4 cup milk
    1/3 cup cooking oil
    1 egg, well beaten
    1 tsp vanilla
    1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries thawed and drained
    1 cup chopped pecans
    1 tsp grated lemon peel
    1/2 tsp fresh grated nutmeg
    4 Tbsp sugar
    Dipping sugar
    Melted butter

    Mix together by hand the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in large mixing bowl. Combine the milk, vanilla, egg together and then add all at once to dry ingredients until moistened. Do not over mix. Gently mix the 4 tablespoons sugar, drained berries, lemon peel and pecans together. Fold the berry mixture lightly into the batter. Fill greased and dusted muffin pans half full. Bake for 20 minutes at 400 F or until done. While muffins are still warm, dip the tops in melted butter, then in the sugar.

    Friday, March 02, 2007

    Seasoned Skewers

    One of the most innovative roasting, BBQing, and flavoring aids I’ve seen in a number of years is Callison’s Seasoned Skewers. They come in six different flavors: Thai Coconut Lime, Citrus Rosemary, Indian Mango Curry, Honey Bourbon, Mexican Fiesta, and Garlic Herb.

    Callison & Sons is a family-owned supplier of botanical oils and flavors that has been responsible for putting the “mint” flavoring into chewing gum since 1903.

    Barbecue, that very American way of flavoring and grilling meats has its history in the Native American Indian populations. Spanish explorers observed the Cherokees and Creek Indians of the Carolinas using crude wooden racks to smoke or dry fish, birds and meats. As they grew accustomed to the idea, the Spanish added beef and pork as meat components.

    BBQ in the U.S. has many regional variations and traditions. Traditionally, the flavor has been added by either the material burned in the fire (woods, charcoal, etc.) or by rubs or marinades placed on top of the food. The problem with all of these methods is the need to use large amounts of flavoring material or having to prepare the meat hours or even days ahead to get the flavor fully infused into the meat.

    Most seasoning forms use the outside of the food to adhere to, and then fall off during cooking or eating. Adding seasoning inside the food adds more flavor. These Seasoned Skewers are available in packages of 10 sticks.

    Many foods, not just meats, can be flavored with this product: chicken, shrimp, halibut, zucchini, mushrooms, tiny red potatoes fruit, shrimp and turkey, and they are 100 percent natural. And one of the nicest things about them is that the sticks season from the INSIDE, out.

    Seasoned Skewers started with a simple, but revolutionary, idea: what if we added flavor to our food from the inside out? In a world of marinades, sauces and rubs, flavor just doesn’t make it all the way inside. But what if the sweet tang of your barbecue chicken actually got past the skin? Imagine the center of your roast having the same garlic herb taste as the crust.

    Seasoned Skewers to the rescue. The skewers are made from untreated, Maine wood and steeped in all-natural oils. So all you have to do is skewer your food, and it gets infused with flavor. The skewers do the work and your food tastes delicious-inside and out. It’s fast. It’s convenient. And, yes, it really works.

    If you would like to learn more about the ‘Sticks’ and where to get them, visit the web site at They have some great recipes there as well.

    Here's two of their exciting recipes.

    Garlic and Herb Roasted Lamb Rack

    Makes 4 servings

    4 Callisons Mediterranean Garlic and Herb Seasoned Skewers
    or other Seasoned Skewer of your choice
    2 Frenched lamb racks (about 2 1/2 pounds total)
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1 teaspoon kosher salt
    1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

    There should be only a thin layer of fat over the meaty side of the racks; if too thick, trim fat carefully with a sharp knife.

    Dry lamb well with paper towels. Skewer each rack lengthwise through the meaty portion with 2 skewers. Space the skewers so that there is maximum flavor infusion. Let sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes or refrigerated overnight.

    Preheat oven to 450°F.

    In a shallow roasting pan, set the lamb racks with flat bony side down with meaty side up. Rub lamb with olive oil and then season meat on all sides with the salt and pepper. Roast for about 20 minutes, to 135 – 140°F internal temperature (medium-rare), or to the doneness you like. Let rest a couple of minutes before removing the skewers and before carving or serving. Carve into chops, cutting between bones.

    Serve 3 to 4 chops per person. Serve with pan juices.

    Seasoned Roasted Pork Loin with Pears & Onions

    Makes 6 – 8 servings

    4 Callisons Indian Mango Curry Seasoned Skewers
    1 boneless pork top loin roast (about 2 1/2 pounds)
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    2 teaspoons kosher salt

    Pears & Onions
    1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
    3 tablespoons cider vinegar
    1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    4 medium pears, unpeeled, cut lengthwise into eighths and cored
    1 small onion, cut into 1″ dice
    2 tablespoons chopped parsley or minced fresh chives

    Pat the pork roast dry with paper towels, and insert the skewers through the meat lengthwise, spacing the skewers evenly apart for maximum flavor infusion.

    Let sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes or refrigerated overnight.

    Preheat oven to 375°F.

    Smear the pork on all sides with the olive oil and season on all sides. Set the roast on a sided baking sheet pan.

    To make the Pears & Onions: In a large bowl, whisk the oil, vinegar, and salt. Mix in the pears and onions, coating well.

    Distribute the pears and onions around the pork and drizzle the liquid over the pears and onions. Roast for about 40 – 50 minutes, or until the pork reaches an internal temperature of 160°F and the pears and onions are tender.

    Transfer the roast to a platter to rest for 10 minutes before carving. Remove skewers before carving or serving.

    With a spoon, move the pears and onions around in the baking pan to coat them with pan juices and toss with parsley or chives. Serve the pork, sliced, with the pears, onions, and juice spooned over it.

    Recipes have been created by Chef Kathy Casey

    Recipe from

    Sunday, February 25, 2007

    Chocolate-Banana Coffee Cake

    Deliciously different, and easy to build


    3/4 cup sugar
    1/2 cup softened butter
    3-4 mashed ripe bananas
    1 TBS Hazelnut syrup
    1/2 cup sour cream
    2 eggs
    2 cups all-purpose flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt


    1 cup chopped walnuts
    1/4 cup packed brown sugar
    2 Tablespoons melted butter
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

    Mix all filling ingredients together and set aside.

    Beat sugar and butter in large bowl until fluffy. Stir in bananas, sour cream, hazelnut syrup, and eggs. Stir in flour, baking soda and salt. Spoon half the batter into 9 x 13-inch greased pan. Sprinkle with half the filling. Spread remaining batter over filling. Sprinkle with remaining filling. Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes or until browned on top and knife or metal skewer comes out clean when inserted into center.

    This is absolutely superb served with a large dollop of hazelnut whipped cream.

    Hazelnut Whipped Cream

    For each cup of heavy cream:

    1 Cup Whipping/Heavy Cream
    1/4 Cup Granulated Sugar
    1-1/2 tsp Hazelnut Syrup
    1 tsp unflavored gelatin
    3-4 TBS water

    Sprinkle 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin over 3 tablespoons cold water and let stand until gelatin is softened. Slightly heat till the gelatin completely dissolves. Cool, but do not let it set.

    Beat the cream, sugar and hazelnut syrup until slightly thickened. While beating more slowly, gradually add the gelatin to the whipped cream, then whip at high speed until stiff.

    TIP: Place the bowl and the beaters or whip you will be using for the whipped cream in the freezer for 30-minutes or longer before starting to whip the cream. Cover the whipped cream bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate immediately until you are ready for it.

    Friday, February 23, 2007

    Tuna Noodle/Macaroni Casserole

    A super quick meal for a meatless day.


    1 can Cream of Celery Soup
    1/2 cup milk
    1 cup cooked peas
    2 tbsp. chopped pimiento
    2 6 Oz. cans tuna, drained and flaked
    2 cups hot cooked medium egg noodles
    2 tbsp. dry bread crumbs
    1 tbsp. butter melted


    PREHEAT oven to 400°F.
    Mix soup, milk, peas, pimiento, tuna and noodles in 1 1/2-qt. baking dish.
    BAKE for 20 miutes or until hot. Stir.

    MIX bread crumbs with melted butter. Sprinkle on top. Bake 5 min.

    Serve with your favorite vegetables as a side.

    Friday, February 09, 2007

    Lemon-Lime Pie with Banana Whipped Cream

    When I was a pre-teenager, I absolutely hated lemon-lime - of ANY kind. How our tastes change as we mature. This pie is the epitome of lemon-lime ANYTHING!! It's fairly easy to make, but a little time consuming. The end result is beyond description.

    Lemon-Lime Pie Filling Ingredients:

    1/3 cup sugar
    2 tablespoons cornstarch (or Tapioca Powder)
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    2 cups milk
    2 egg yolks, well beaten
    2 tablespoons softened butter
    2 Lemon Myrtle Leaves
    2 Lime Kaffir leaves


    Blend sugar, cornstarch and salt in 2-quart saucepan. Combine milk and yolks, and gradually stir into sugar mixture. Add leaves and simmer for 10-minutes on very low heat. After 10-minutes, remove leaves. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and boils. Set aside. Once pudding boils, stir for 1 minute, remove from heat, and stir in butter. Cover tightly and put in refrigerator until it solidifies.

    Make your favorite graham cracker pie crust. Bake until done. Let cool. Spread pie filling over the cooled crust; cover and refrigerate.

    Banana Whipped Cream

    For each cup of heavy cream:

    Sprinkle 1-1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin over 3-5 tablespoons cold water and let stand until gelatin is softened. Slightly heat till the gelatin completely dissolves. Cool, but do not let it set. Beat the cream, granulated sugar and 1/2 small overripe banana until slightly thickened. While beating a little more slowly, gradually add the gelatin to the whipped cream. Whip at high speed until stiff. Refrigerate for several hours.

    Be sure to refrigerate the bowl and beater(s) for at least 30 minutes. The cream must be cold when beaten. Do not overbeat.

    Saturday, February 03, 2007

    Milk Chocolate Cake

    This is a light textured, light chocolate cake that chocolate lovers will enjoy. The filling can be of your choice, as can the icing. If you like the flavor of a 'light' chocolate, I suggest either a vanilla or rum pudding filling, and a butternut icing.


    2 cups flour
    2 cups sugar
    1/4 cup baking cocoa
    1-1/2 tsp. baking soda
    1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
    1/4 tsp. salt
    2 eggs
    1 cup whole milk
    1/2 cup oil
    2 tsp. vanilla
    1 cup boiling water


    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and dust two 9" layer cake pans. Set aside.

    In a large bowl, combine sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir with wire whisk until well mixed.Add eggs, milk, oil, and vanilla and beat well with wire whisk or mixer until combined, about 2 minutes. While beating, heat water in microwave oven to boiling. Stir boiling water into cake batter.

    This is a VERY thin batter, so fear not. Pour the thin batter into the two prepared cake pans. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30-35 minutes or until cake pulls away from sides of pan, top springs back when lightly touched, and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool for 5-10 minutes, then remove from pans and cool completely on wire racks.


    Tuesday, January 30, 2007

    Banana-Peach Cobbler

    Frozen peaches are easier to use here - and less work - than fresh.

    1/2 cup melted butter
    1 cup flour
    1 cup sugar
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    2/3 cup room temperature milk
    1 room temperature egg


    1 large can sliced peaches (or frozen) and drained
    1 banana - 1/4 inch sliced
    1 cup sugar
    1 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon nutmeg


    1. Melt butter in a 9 x 13 inch pan.
    2. Mix together flour, sugar, baking powder& salt.
    3. Stir in milk and egg.
    4. Pour evenly over melted butter.
    5. Combine peaches and banana, sugar and spices and spread over batter-DO NOT STIR!
    6. Bake 30-40 minutes at 350 degrees until batter rises and is golden brown.

    Spoon into individual dishes, and serve warm or cold with ice cream or whipped cream, Or both :-)

    Sunday, January 21, 2007

    Sole Florentine

    Sole is a very mild, sweet salt water fish. The lemon/cucumber sauce(*Below) adds a wonderful dimension to this dish. Serve with baked potato and steamed asparagus.

    4 tsp. butter
    1/2 cup onion, chopped
    Pinch of rosemary crushed or powdered
    8 ounces frozen chopped spinach (optional)
    1/2 cup chopped almonds
    2 tsp. lemon juice
    1 lb. Sole fillets
    2/3 cup lemon/cucumber white sauce
    2 Tbs. plus 2 tsp. water
    Sprinkling of smoked paprika

    Preheat oven to 350F. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Saute onions and rosemary 4-5 minutes until onions are tender. Add next 4 ingredients. Heat 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Let cool. Place 1/4 cup mixture on each fish fillet. Roll up and secure with toothpicks. Arrange fish rolls in a shallow buttered baking dish. Bake 20 minutes. Combine soup and water in a bowl. Pour white sauce over baked fish. Bake another 15 minutes, or until heated through. Sprinkle with paprika and serve.

    Lemon-Cucumber Sauce

    3 TBS Butter
    3 TBS Flour
    1/2 Medium Cucumber – Peeled and sliced in ½” thick slices
    1 Cup Chicken Broth
    1-1 ½ Cups milk or cream
    2 Large Lemon Myrtle Leaves

    Make the white sauce (roux) by melting the butter. Remove from heat. Whisk in the flour. Add the milk, cream, and chicken broth. Place on medium flame until it starts to bubble; turn to very low. Add cucumber slices and the lemon myrtle leaves. Simmer on very LOW HEAT UNTIL THE CUCUMBER FALLS APART. Blend into the sauce for a smoother sauce, or leave the chunks.


    Friday, January 19, 2007

    Rum Pudding-Cake Filling

    This recipe is hard to beat for a devil's food cake filling. Topped with whipped cream or raspberries - or both, it is a superb dessert.


    2 Tablespoons unflavored gelatin
    1/2 cup cold water
    1 cup boiling water
    2 cups whipping cream
    1/3 cup white or golden rum
    1/2 cup powdered sugar (granulated for a sweeter filling)
    1 teaspoon vanilla

    Dissolve gelatin in cold then add hot water; cool until partially set. Whip cream, then add to gelatin with sugar, rum and vanilla. Lete cool in a large bowl. Refrigerate. When ready to use, coat the bottom cake layer. Place second layer on top, then frost top layer and sides of the cake with rich, fudge icing.


    Friday, January 12, 2007

    French Coconut Pie

    I don't know of too many people who do NOT like coconut in one form or another. This pie is quick to make and is a wonderful way to finish off a meal - especially with a cup of breshly brewed hazelnut coffee. Permission was given to me by the author - creator to publish this recipe; she is an encyclopedia of cooking and baking knowledge on the King Arthur Baking Circle, as well as being a mainstay to the message board, and the question and answer point person if you ever have inquiries about cooking and baking or equipment/ingredient resources.


    • 3 eggs, beaten
    • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
    • 1 stick butter, melted
    • 1 Tbsp. vinegar
    • 3 cups coconut


    Combine well, and pour ingredients into unbaked pie shell. Bake at 350 degrees until firm...about 1 hour. This is much like pecan pie.

    An extra addition - a topping - for this pie that goes really well is an ALMOND praline.

    Almond Praline Crunch:

    3/4 cup Butter
    1/2 cup Sugar
    1 cup coarsely chopped and toasted almonds.

    Stir all together in a heavy duty pan until the sugar is completely dissolved and the mixture comes to a boil. Remove from heat. Once the mixture solidifies and cools, remove from the pan and place the chunks between several folds of waxed paper and break it up with a heavy rolling pin (marble works the best) and crush the chunks into very small pieces. Sprinkle over pie before serving. If you REALLY want more calories and want to be decadent, a few dollops of whipped cream on top is delicious.

    Posted by Il Fornaio (The Baker) at 9:57 AM 1 comments

    Easy Enchiladas

    A delicious meal in no time flat!!

    2 Lbs shredded beef
    1 TBS Chili Powder
    4 Garlic buds crushed and finely diced
    ½ Large Onion Chopped
    2 tsp Cumin
    1 Cup Taco Sauce
    1 Cup Sliced Black Olives
    1 Can (16 Oz.) Refried Beans
    1 Cup Corn Niblets (Optional)
    2 Cans Green Enchilada Sauce
    1 ½-2 Cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese

    Cook beef in crock pot overnight on low. Cool and shred coarsely in food processor; remove to large bowl. In a separate pan, sauté the garlic and onion. To the bowl with the shredded beef, add onion and garlic, refried beans, chili powder, cumin, taco sauce, corn and olives. Mix well so all is blended.

    In a heatproof casserole dish, pour one (1) can of the enchilada sauce. Place meat filling in the center of a tortilla, then roll up and arrange in dish. Pour remaining can of enchilada sauce over the rolled up tortillas. Sprinkle the shredded cheese over the filled tortillas. Bake in a preheated 375F. oven for 20-25 minutes.

    Serve as is, or with chopped tomatoes, shredded lettuce, sour cream, and guacamole.


    Monday, January 08, 2007

    Lemon Myrtle/Banana White Sauce

    3 TBS Butter
    3 TBS Flour
    1 Medium banana mashed
    1 Cup Chicken Broth
    ¼ Cup Slivered almonds
    ¼ Cup shredded coconut
    1-1 ½ Cups milk or cream
    1 Lemon Myrtle Leaf
    ¼ tsp curry
    ½ tsp Accent
    1 Dash of Angostura Bitters

    Sautee mashed banana in melted butter on medium heat. Remove from heat and whisk in flour. Add all remaining ingredients. Return to low heat whisking constantly. Keep on low heat until thickened and the flavors develop.

    Serve this over boneless/skinless chicken with orzo or Jasmine rice pilaf.