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Recipes from Spike & Jamie

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Contents Disk 56

How to use these pages:  Below is a list of the recipes on this page.  You can either scroll down the page and look at all of the recipes, or look at the titles.  When you find one that seems interesting, use your web browsers FIND function to take you directly to that recipe (on my IE browser it's Edit/Find (on this page)   or Ctrl - F on your keyboard).





























































































These delicious fruit pastries are similar to what your parents know as a blintz. The only difference is, these chimichangas are made with tortillas instead of crepes, giving them a Mexican flair. Serve them at a lunch or brunch, or eat them as a light snack or dessert. One taste and you'll be tempted to eat them all, but don't! Remember what we learned in kindergarten: It's best to share.

1 teaspoon grated orange peel

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup low-fat ricotta cheese

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened

6 (8-inch) flour tortillas

1/2 cup apricot preserves

1 egg, lightly beaten

2 tablespoons margarine, melted

Apricot Sauce (recipe follows)

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees. Lightly grease an 11 X 14-inch baking sheet. In a medium-size mixing bowl, with a wooden spoon, thoroughly combine the orange peel, sugar, ricotta, and cream cheese. Spoon 1/4 cup of the mixture onto the center of each tortilla, then top with 1 heaping tablespoon apricot preserves.

Fold one end of the tortilla about 1 1/2 inches over the filling. Fold the left and right sides over the folded end, overlapping them. Fold the remaining end down. To seal, brush the edges with the egg and pinch closed. Brush each chimichanga with margarine. Place the chimichangas seam side down on the baking sheet. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until the filling is hot and the edges begin to brown, Meanwhile, make the apricot sauce. Drizzle some apricot sauce over the top of each chimichanga and serve.

Serves: 6

Apricot Sauce

3/4 cup apricot preserves

1/2 cup sliced dried apricots, or 1 cup sliced fresh apricots

Place the apricot preserves in a microwavable bowl. Heat on 100% (HIGH) power in the microwave for a minute, or until the preserves have melted. Stir in the apricots. Serve immediately or at room temperature. Serves: 6


2 quarts strong chicken stock or broth

1/2 cup rice

4 eggs

Juice of 2 lemons (about 1/2 cup)

Bring the stock to a boil and add the rice. Cook until the rice is tender, about 20 minutes. Remove the stock from the heat. Just before serving, beat the eggs with a

rotary beater or wire whisk until they are light and frothy. Slowly beat in the lemon juice and dilute the mixture with 2 cups of the hot soup, beating constantly until well-mixed.

Add the diluted egg-lemon mixture to the rest of the soup, beating constantly. Bring almost to the boiling point, but do not boil, or soup will curdle. Serve immediately.



4 6-ounce haddock fillets or other firm white fish, skinned and boned


3 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 medium red onions, finely chopped

1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander

1/2 teaspoon cayenne

1 red bell pepper, diced

1 green bell pepper, diced

4 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced (see note)

Juice of 3 limes (about 6 tablespoons)

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Rinse the fillets and pat dry.

To make the sauce: In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in coriander and cayenne and cook 2 minutes. Add diced red and green peppers and tomatoes. Reduce the heat to low and cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir

in the lime juice. Season with salt and pepper. Arrange the fillets in a buttered shallow baking dish. Cover with the sauce and bake uncovered for 20 to 25 minutes or until the fish flakes easily when tested with a fork. Sprinkle with cilantro. Note: To skin tomatoes, plunge into boiling water for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove immediately and plunge into cold water. Skin should slip off easily.


How recipe for bread with barley and hops could go awry


Mercury News

A CAN of beer, sugar, self-rising flour. Short of first imbibing the other five cans in the six-pack, how can you take a wrong turn making beer bread? It is simple and a much-beloved staple. But baking is a more exacting science than most forms of cooking, and beer bread is evidence that things can go awry in the simplest recipes. Our anonymous reader follows a standard beer-bread formula -- 12-ounce can of beer, three tablespoons sugar and three cups self-rising flour, baked in a greased loaf pan at 375 degrees for an hour -- but finds lumps of dough in the finished product.

Readers were quick with suggestions. Denise Heenan, Linda Silva of Morgan Hill and Mildred Ferguson of Carmel were among the trouble-shooters who think Anonymous should eliminate a step that calls for the dough to rest for 30 minutes. Immediately place the dough in pans, then in the oven, they advise.

Ferguson points out that she bakes the bread at 350 degrees, rather than 375 degrees.

And several readers noted that our beleaguered baker uses three tablespoons sugar rather than the two called for in their recipes. Marilyn Golden takes a little different approach. After stirring together the ingredients, she turns the dough out on a floured board and kneads a few times, until the dough can be easily handled. She cuts the dough in half, shapes each piece into a long, narrow roll and bakes in a baguette pan for 35 minutes or until nicely browned.

And Judy Gerleman of Palo Alto thinks Anonymous is missing one delicious step. ``After 50 minutes of baking, you pour 1/2 cup of melted butter over the loaf and continue baking for the final 10 minutes.'' For the record, Home Plates includes a basic beer-bread recipe from Rosa Bennett of Campbell. It's slightly different than the three-ingredient version, but Bennett swears by it. She likes to use dark, strong beers. The recipe comes from the Queen Victoria Cookbook, from a bed and breakfast in Cape May, N.J.


3 cups flour

4 tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

12 ounces beer

1 stick butter (not margarine)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together. Add beer and mix well. Spoon into two greased loaf pans. Melt butter and drizzle over top. Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until bread is golden and pick inserted in center comes out clean. Makes 2 medium loaves.



1/2 cup oatmeal, old-fashioned or quick-cooking, uncooked

1/4 cup sliced almonds

1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon


3 cups fat-free milk or low-fat soy milk

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)

2 cups oatmeal, old-fashioned or quick-cooking, uncooked

1 cup frozen (do not thaw) or canned blueberries (drained)

Before you start: Wash your hands thoroughly with hot, soapy water. To make topping: Combine oatmeal and almonds in medium skillet. Cook over medium-low heat 4 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until both are lightly browned. Cool completely. In a small bowl, combine brown sugar and cinnamon. Add oatmeal mixture; mix well.

To make oatmeal: Bring milk, cinnamon and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan; stir in 2 cups oatmeal. Return to a boil; reduce heat to medium. Cook 5 minutes for old-fashioned oatmeal, 1 minute for quick-cooking oatmeal, stirring occasionally. Gently stir in blueberries. Continue cooking until blueberries are heated through and most of liquid is absorbed, about 1 minute. Spoon oatmeal into 5 cereal bowls. Sprinkle topping over oatmeal.


For soy-mustard sauce

1/4 cup Colman's mustard powder

2 tablespoons hot water

2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar

1/4 cup soy sauce

For beurre blanc

1/2 cup white wine

2 teaspoons white wine vinegar

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon minced shallot

2 tablespoons heavy cream

1/2 cup unsalted butter, chopped

1/2 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground white pepper to taste

For blackening spice

1 1/2 tablespoons paprika

1/2 tablespoon cayenne powder

1/2 tablespoon red chile powder

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper

For fish

1 ahi tuna fillet, about 2 inches thick and 5 inches long (about 8 ounces)

For garnish

2 or 3 tablespoons red pickled ginger

1/2 teaspoon black sesame seeds

1 ounce Japanese spice sprouts or sunflower sprouts (top 2 inches only)

1 tablespoon seeded and diced yellow bell pepper, optional

1 tablespoon cucumber, cut into matchsticks, optional

For soy-mustard sauce: Mix mustard powder and hot water together into a paste. Let sit for a few minutes to allow flavor to develop. Add vinegar and soy sauce, mix together and strain through a fine sieve. Chill in refrigerator.

For beurre blanc: Combine wine, wine vinegar, lemon juice and shallot in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce liquid until syrupy. Add cream and reduce by half. Turn heat to low and gradually add butter, stirring slowly (do not whisk) until incorporated. Be careful not to let mixture boil, or it will break and separate. Season with salt and pepper, and strain through a fine sieve. Transfer to a double boiler and

keep warm.

For blackening spice: Mix all spices together on a plate, and dredge ahi on all sides. Heat a lightly oiled cast-iron skillet and sear ahi over high heat to desired doneness (about 15 seconds per side for rare, to 1 minute per side for medium-rare). Cut into 16 thin slices.

To serve: For each serving, arrange 4 slices ahi in a pinwheel or cross shape on the plate. Ladle a little soy-mustard sauce in two opposing quadrants between the tuna, and ladle beurre blanc in other two quadrants. To garnish, put a small mound of pickled ginger on beurre blanc on either side; sprinkle sesame seeds over soy-mustard sauce. Arrange spice sprouts, bell pepper and cucumber at the center of this pinwheel.


6 cups old-fashioned oatmeal, uncooked

1 cup honey

1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted (1 stick)

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 cup pine nuts (see note)

1/2 cup dried apricots, sliced (see note)

Yogurt or milk (optional)

Before you start: Wash your hands thoroughly with hot, soapy water. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Spread oatmeal evenly in roasting pan or large jellyroll pan. In medium mixing bowl, stir together honey, butter, vanilla, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg. Pour over oatmeal and stir until evenly coated.

Bake until evenly browned, about 20 minutes. Have an adult help you remove the pan from oven every 5 minutes to stir to prevent clumping. Using pot holders, remove pan from oven, place pan on top of the stove or on a heatproof surface. Holding the pan with a pot holder, stir in pine nuts and dried apricots and continue to stir every 5 minutes until cool to maintain the loose texture.

Serve with yogurt or milk, or enjoy by itself. Store tightly covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 month. Note: Instead of pine nuts and dried apricots, use other favorite nuts and dried fruits, such as pecans and dried cranberries, or walnuts and raisins. For an added crunch and a boost of fiber, add 1/4 cup wheat germ to oatmeal.



2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup applesauce

2 eggs

1/4 cup frozen apple juice concentrate, thawed

1/4 cup vegetable oil

2 1/2 cups low-fat granola (divided)

2 cups shredded low-fat cheddar cheese (8 ounces; divided)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 13-by-9-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray or 1 teaspoon butter. In a small bowl, mix flour, baking powder and salt; set aside. Combine applesauce, eggs, apple juice concentrate and oil in a large bowl. Blend with a whisk. Stir in flour mixture, 2 cups granola, and 1 1/2 cups cheese. Using a rubber spatula, spread mixture into prepared pan. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup cheese and 1/2 cup granola evenly over the top of the batter. Bake 20 to 24 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Use pot holders to remove pan from the oven and place pan on heatproof surface. Let stand at least 10 minutes; cut into 24 bars. To store, wrap individual bars in plastic wrap.


3 boneless skinless chicken breast halves, cut into bite-size pieces

1 medium onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 14 1/2 -ounce cans chicken or vegetable broth

1 teaspoon dried basil leaves

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 1/2 ounces uncooked rotini (spiral pasta; 3/4 cup)

1 1-pound package frozen broccoli, carrots and cauliflower

4 cups nonfat milk (divided)

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 medium red bell pepper, chopped

1/4 cup shredded fresh parmesan cheese

Spray Dutch oven or large saucepan with nonstick cooking spray. Heat over medium heat until hot. Add chicken, onion and garlic; cook 4 to 6 minutes or until onion is tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in broth, basil and salt. Bring to a boil. Add rotini; cook over

medium-high heat for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, place frozen vegetables in colander or strainer; rinse with warm water until thawed. Drain well.

In small bowl, combine 1 cup milk and flour; blend well. Stir vegetables, milk mixture, remaining 3 cups milk and bell pepper into rotini mixture. Bring just to a boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to medium; cook 3 to 5 minutes or until soup thickens and vegetables and pasta are tender, stirring occasionally. To serve, ladle chowder into 6 individual soup bowls. Sprinkle each with cheese.


By KATHERINE MILLER of The Oregonian staff

A wave of groans filled the room as waiters briskly delivered the plates to the tables.

"Good lord, not more chocolate!"

This wasn't just any chocolate. This was the Secret Marquise, a cool, dense, creamy mixture of three kinds of chocolate lying seductively amid a pool of cream that had been whipped just until it whimpered. It was a dessert to die for. Trouble was, we had already given our lives many times over in the previous 16 hours. Sixteen food editors and writers had gathered in the stately rooms of a 1738 Georgian-style manor outside Baltimore to learn the latest news on the science of chocolate: antioxidants, fermentation, the physiology of cravings, fat's relationship to flavor, and how to repair melted chocolate that has seized (see accompanying story).

Don't be mistaken: These journalists were gathered strictly in the name of science, brought together by the American Chemical Society to provide a greater understanding of the role science plays in the food world. If this meant attendees had to eat enough top-quality chocolate to frost a 747, so be it. As with wine and coffee, the media have shown an insatiable appetite for news about chocolate. Often, however, FD1 the news gets distorted. In his opening remarks, Joseph A. Schwarcz, professor of chemistry with McGill University in Montreal, laid to rest the myth that chocolate is an aphrodisiac.

Phenylethylamine, one of chocolate's more than 300 compounds, is a substance found at higher levels in the brains of people in love. But, according to Schwarcz, after chocolate is eaten, the phenylethylamine is metabolized during digestion and does not increase in blood levels. In any case, he pointed out, sauerkraut has a lot more phenylethylamine than chocolate.

Wine, roses and caffeine?

What some people experience as a romantic reaction, said Schwarcz, is likely to be caused by the stimulants found in chocolate, caffeine among them. For the record, 1 ounce of chocolate contains 10 to 20 milligrams of caffeine. A 6-ounce cup of brewed coffee contains about 105 milligrams, and a 12-ounce cola 35 to 50 milligrams. Although chocolate is no love potion, Schwarcz says it can raise your spirits. Since it is a carbohydrate, it raises the level of serotonin in the brain and acts as an anti- depressant in the manner of drugs such as Prozac. Chocolate also stimulates the release of endorphins in the brain, helping to create a state of well-being, much like the "high" created by vigorous exercise.

At this point, the audience was all abuzz. Not from Schwarcz's remarks, but from the dessert: chocolate mousse pie with praline crust -- plus homemade bittersweet truffles presented with fresh strawberries in a box made of bittersweet chocolate. The next day, scientists gave journalists the chemical side of how cacao beans are made into chocolate and processed by the body. The speakers tried to present their information in layman's language, but, bottom line, chocolate is a complex food, made up of things such as anandamide, theobromine and oligomeric procyanidins.

As college students, most journalists made a point of sidestepping such names by taking such classes as "Invertebrate Adaption for Nonmajors." Now, we desperately tried to digest the complex information, along with the delectable dessert we ate at lunch: Double Chocolate Pudding (a k a Country Chocolate Pudding) served with honey ice cream nestled in a lace cookie cup (see accompanying recipe).

Favorite food, bar none

Marcia Levin Pelchat, an associate member of Monell Chemical Senses Center, a nonprofit research institute in Philadelphia, explained why so many people crave chocolate. According to Pelchat, chocolate's unique sweet-fat flavor and its smooth mouthfeel (it melts at body temperature) make it the most frequently named food in surveys of cravings. But some of us appreciate it more than others. Pelchat said 60 percent of females crave sweets (and, remember, the sweet they crave most is chocolate), while 35 percent crave savory foods. Those numbers are reversed for males. Numerous hypotheses have been proposed to explain chocolate craving,

including a nutrient deficit; self-medication for depression; hormones; conditioned response; and an environmental trigger. According to Pelchat, some of these "mechanisms" have already been disproved. For example, the idea of self-medication for depression, she explained, isn't valid because "Triscuits and cheese work better" than chocolate at raising serotonin levels, and yet people don't crave those foods.

Pelchat hypothesized that because women crave chocolate more than men, and

younger females crave it more than older females, there may be some biological basis -- such as ovarian hormones -- that explains the gender preference. However, Pelchat said it is still not known whether one or multiple mechanisms control chocolate craving.

All this talk about hormones and cravings wasn't lost on the largely female audience. At the next break, several members could be seen brushing crumbs from the chocolate croissants off their laps.

Give in to the dark side

Joe Vinson, professor of chemistry at the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania, described some recent preliminary research that linked consumption of cocoa powder and dark chocolate to a slight increase in HDL levels. HDL is the "good" type of blood cholesterol that fights heart disease by preventing the buildup of cholesterol in arteries.

This is because chocolate is rich in polyphenols, and the darker the chocolate, the more polyphenols you get (cocoa powder contains the most, white chocolate none). Polyphenols -- a k a antioxidants -- have several benefits, most importantly the ability to help limit artery damage by preventing the oxidation of LDL, the "bad" kind of cholesterol. A 1.4-ounce bar of milk chocolate contains 394 milligrams polyphenols, about the same amount as in a glass of red wine; a bar of dark chocolate has 951

milligrams, slightly more than what's in a cup of black tea. "You shouldn't feel guilty about eating chocolate," Vinson said. "The only negative about chocolate is that it has calories . . . The key is moderation and not excess."

In short, he recommended, do not start substituting chocolate for broccoli. Actually, by the time the conference ended, some lightly steamed broccoli had started to sound very good. But there was no escape. As we departed, we were given bags containing a chocolate bar-motif T-shirt -- and a chocolate bar.


Whatever you do, warns Shirley Corriher, do not seize the day. For those who have never encountered the bane of bakers everywhere, seized chocolate is chocolate that has turned into a "solid grainy mass." Corriher, a noted scientist and cookbook author, says the trick to avoiding seizures is melting chocolate with hot liquid: Measure at least 1 tablespoon of liquid for every 2 ounces of chocolate into a small heavy pan or skillet.

The liquid can be taken from some of the water, butter or cream called for in the recipe. Heat the liquid just "until you see a whisp of steam," remove from heat, add the chopped chocolate and stir constantly until melted. Replace on the heat for a minute or two as needed to completely melt the chocolate.

A temperature of 89 to 90 degrees F is ideal for melting chocolate, says Corriher. Never, she adds, heat it higher than 120 degrees; at around 130 degrees, chocolate separates and burns. Moisture is the other enemy of melting chocolate. The standard method of melting, in a container over simmering water, creates steam and condensation, which is too risky, she says. Instead, Corriher recommends the hot liquid method described above, or microwaving at medium power (6 ounces of chopped semisweet chocolate should take about 3 minutes at this setting). Be careful not to overcook the chocolate. Chocolate heated in a microwave may still hold its shape, so stirring is necessary to know if the lumps are solid or liquid. Should your chocolate seize up, Corriher has the remedy, which is, strangely enough, more moisture. She demonstrated how a small amount of warm water stirred vigorously into seized chocolate brings it back together, to its smooth, shiny state.


2 cups flour

1 1/4 cups sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 cup unsweetened applesauce

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons fat-free egg sub.

2 1/2 cups (packed) grated carrots (about 5 med.)

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting

8 oz. non-fat cream cheese

1 tablespoon skim milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

sugar sub. equal to 1/3 cup sugar

1 1/2 cups light whipped topping

Place four, sugar, soda and cinnamon in a large bowl and stir to mix well. Add applesauce, egg sub., carrots and vanilla and stir to mix well. Stir in walnuts. Coat 9 x13 pan with nonstick cooking spray. Spread batter evenly in the pan. Bake at 325 for 35 minutes or until done. Cool to room temp. To make frosting, beat cream cheese, milk, vanilla and sugar sub. with an electric mixer until smooth. Fold in whipped topping. Spread frosting over cooled cake. Cut into 2 x 3 inch squares and serve immediately or refrigerate. Yield: 18 servings


1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons reduced fat margarine

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons light brown sugar

3 tablespoons fat-free egg substitute

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 cup chocolate chips

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Place margarine and brown sugar in bowl and mix until smooth. Add egg substitute and vanilla and mix until smooth. Place flour, baking soda, and baking powder in a medium-sized bowl and stir to mix well. Add flour mixture to margarine mixture and mix well. Stir in chips and walnuts. Coat a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray. Drop rounded teaspoonfuls of the dough onto the sheet, spacing them 1 1/2 inches apart. Bake at 300 for 16-18 minutes or until golden brown. Cool the cookies on the pan for 1

minute. Then transfer to wire racks to cool completely. Serve immediately or transfer to an airtight container.



3 tablespoons olive oil (divided)

2 cloves garlic, chopped

2 teaspoons chicken bouillon paste or granules, or 2 cubes

1 1/2 cups rice, uncooked

1/2 cup Flav R Pac brand whole-kernel corn

1/2 cup Flav R Pac brand peas and carrots

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 1/2 cups chopped Walla Walla or other sweet onions

2 15-ounce cans black beans

1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro

In the rice cooker, place 1 tablespoon olive oil and saute the garlic. Add the chicken bouillon. Add the rice and stir for 3 minutes until the rice turns a little golden. Add the vegetables. Fill the rice cooker up to the 2-cup mark with water and stir. Place lid on and let the rice cook, according to the manufacturer's directions. Meanwhile, place the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in the frying pan along with the balsamic vinegar, soy sauce and onions; cook until onions are translucent. Drain the beans. Mix the beans into the onions; bring to a boil. Once the rice is cooked, fluff with a fork. (For better texture, cook the rice the day before and let it sit overnight in the refrigerator. Reheat in

microwave.) Add the hot rice and cilantro to the bean mixture in the skillet. Serve.



8 eggs

2 cups granulated sugar

1 pound chopped pecans (3-3/4 cups)

1 pound chopped dates (2-1/2 cups)

4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

3/4 cup rum


3 cups powdered sugar

1/2 cup orange juice

2 tablespoons rum

1 cup chopped toasted almonds (see note)

1 cup chopped pecans

1 cup shredded coconut

1 cup chocolate sprinkles or shots

Icing for flowers:

2 cups powdered sugar

1/2 cup whipping cream

food coloring

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

To make cake: Beat eggs until thick. Gradually beat in the sugar, then add the pecans, dates and the flour mixed with salt, baking powder and baking soda. Blend thoroughly. Pour into an ungreased jellyroll pan and bake about 35 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with rum. When dough has cooled enough to handle with a teaspoon, scoop out small portions and roll each into a ball.


To make icing: Mix the sugar, juice and rum together. Dip each ball into this mixture, then into any topping: the chopped nuts, coconut or chocolate sprinkles. You can leave some of the balls plain or you can let your imagination run wild. When the topping has set, place balls in colored paper candy cups.

To make icing for flowers (to top petits fours): Blend sugar and cream together. If icing is too thin, use more sugar. Icing should be thick enough to hold its shape. Add a drop of food coloring for varied effects. On the plain balls, use your pastry bag fitted with a star tube. Make little flowers in different colors.

Note: To toast nuts, heat in a dry skillet over medium heat until they start to brown. Stir occasionally. Be careful not to scorch them.


Pudding layer:

12 ounces whipping cream (1 1/2 cups)

6 tablespoons granulated sugar

4 egg yolks


1 1/2 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped in small pieces

Cake layer:

3 3/4 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped

5 1/2 tablespoons butter

3 eggs

3 3/4 tablespoons granulated sugar

Honey or vanilla ice cream

To making pudding layer: Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Place cream in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, whisk together the sugar and yolks. Remove the cream from the heat and pour over chocolate. Stir until melted. Slowly add the cream into the yolk mixture. Pour into four 8-ounce buttered ramekins no more than half full. Place in 9 1/2 -by-13-inch pan; add hot water to halfway up the sides of ramekins. Place pan in oven and bake 45 minutes or until pudding jiggles when lightly touched. Cool completely.

To make cake layer: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Melt chocolate and butter in a microwave or in a heavy pan set over the lowest heat on range (Use a flame-tamer if you have a commercial range.) Whip the eggs and sugar on high speed until lemon yellow. Pour the chocolate/butter mixture into the eggs while still mixing. Divide batter over the cooled pudding layer in ramekins. Place ramekins in 9 1/2 -by-13-inch pan; add hot water to halfway up sides of ramekins and bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in just the cake layer comes out clean. Serve warm with honey or vanilla ice cream or chill completely.



12 fresh oysters, cleaned and shucked

1 cup cornmeal

4 tablespoons olive oil

Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste


1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon chopped shallots

3 tablespoons capers, rinsed

1 cup dry white wine

2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard

Fresh tarragon leaves, to taste

1 tablespoon butter, softened

Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste


1/2 pound arugula, stems removed

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

To make oysters: Coat oysters with cornmeal. Heat a large saute pan and add the olive oil. Heat over medium-high until hot. Add oysters and fry a couple of minutes on each side, depending on the size of oysters. Dust with salt and pepper to taste. Remove oysters and set aside.

To make sauce: Put pan back on burner, add 1 tablespoon olive oil, then add shallots and capers. Saute until shallots are softened. Add the wine and boil until reduced by half, scraping the browned bits into the sauce. During this process, add mustard and tarragon. Lower heat, add butter and whisk until creamy. Season with salt and pepper.

To make salad: Wash arugula, drain well, mix with the extra-virgin oil and form into a little bundle in center of each serving plate. Place 3 oysters on each plate. Drizzle sauce around rim of plate.



Crumb crust:

1 18.25-ounce box white cake mix

1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar

3/4 cup finely chopped nuts

1/3 cup melted butter (5 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon)


1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 egg

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

3 cans Oregon brand fruit, drained (boysenberries, raspberries and blueberries)

Whipped cream for garnish

To make crumb crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together cake mix, brown sugar, nuts and melted butter. Take out 1 1/4 cups for topping. Spread remaining mixture in greased 12-inch pizza pan and bake for 8 minutes. To make topping: In a bowl beat cream cheese, sugar, egg and vanilla until smooth. Pour topping on hot crust, sprinkle reserved 1 1/4 cups of the crumb crust mixture and bake for 25 minutes.

Decorate with canned fruit and whipped cream.


1/2 teaspoon butter

4 large (9 ounces each) potatoes, baked and cooled to room temperature

1/2 cup mixed dried fruit (such as raisins, cranberries, cherries, chopped apricots)

4 eggs

1 cup evaporated skim milk or fat-free half-and-half

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Use the butter to grease a 7-by-11-inch baking pan.

Use a small knife to peel the skin off the cooled potatoes and slice thinly. Arrange half the sliced potatoes in the buttered pan. Cover potatoes evenly with the dried fruit. Top fruit layer with remaining potato slices. Mix eggs, milk, salt and pepper in a bowl and pour over potatoes. Cover the potatoes with foil and place it in a larger baking pan (such as a 13-by-9-inch pan) and carefully pour 1/2 inch of boiling water into the larger pan to create a water bath. Bake 40 minutes. Using potholders, carefully uncover pan and bake another 15 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Have an adult remove both pans from the oven. Cut into 6 bars and wrap individually with plastic wrap. Store in refrigerator. Variations: Top potatoes with 1/4 cup toasted, sliced almonds, or add 1/2 cup diced lean ham or crumbled bacon to the dried fruit mixture.



For salsa:

1 cup seeded and diced Japanese cucumber

1/2 cup seeded and diced red tomato

3 yellow pear tomatoes, cut in half

2 tablespoons finely minced ginger

1/4 cup finely minced onion

2 tablespoons soy sauce

2 tablespoons rayu (spicy sesame oil; available at Asian markets)

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

For garlic-herb crust:

1/4 cup coarsely chopped garlic

1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley

1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil

1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon

4 anchovy fillets

4 shallots, roughly chopped (about 1/2 cup)

1 teaspoon virgin olive oil

For fish:

4 mahi mahi fillets, about 7 ounces each (or substitute another firm-fleshed fish)

1 teaspoon canola oil

For salsa: Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl and chill.

For crust: Place all crust ingredients in a food processor or blender, and puree. Coat one side of each mahi mahi fillet with this crust and let sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Heat canola oil in a non-stick saute pan and sear the crusted mahi mahi over high heat for 45 seconds to 1 minute per side for medium doneness.

Place fish, crust side up, on 4 serving plates and spoon salsa over and around each serving, letting juices from salsa run onto the plates.


Makes about 15 cups

2 14-1/2 -ounce cans diced tomatoes in juice

3 pounds fresh, ripe Roma tomatoes, peeled and seeded (see note)

1 cup diced red onion

2 red bell peppers, finely diced

2 green bell peppers, finely diced

3 large cucumbers, peeled, seeded and finely diced

1 bunch fresh cilantro, minced

1 teaspoon minced shallots

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves

1/4 cup tamari

1 1/2 tablespoons Tabasco sauce

1 bunch thinly sliced green onions (optional)

Sour cream (optional)

Diced avocado (optional)

Tiny cooked shrimp (optional)

In a food processor, puree the canned tomatoes until almost smooth. Add the fresh tomatoes and red onion; continue processing until finely chopped. Pour the mixture into a large bowl and add the red and green peppers, cucumbers, cilantro, shallots, cumin, chili powder, oregano, tamari and Tabasco sauce. Stir with a wire whip to ensure the mixture is well-combined. Refrigerate until chilled.

Serve in cups, topped with optional garnishes: sliced green onions, 1 tablespoon sour cream, 1/4 diced avocado and 3 ounces shrimp. Note: To peel tomatoes, plunge into boiling water for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove immediately and plunge into cold water. Skin should slip off easily.


1 cup Sugar

1 1/2 tablespoons Flour

1 tablespoon Mustard Powder

1/2 teaspoon Salt

2 medium Eggs

1 cup Cider Vinegar

12 medium Potatoes

2 cloves Garlic -- sliced

1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper -- freshly ground

2 tablespoons Onion Flakes -- dried

1 ounce Good Seasonings dry Italian dressing mix

2 cups Yogurt, skim milk -- or low-fat mayonnaise

Mix sugar, flour, dry mustard, and salt, then add eggs and vinegar. Cook over medium heat until hot, then reduce temperature to low. Cook until dressing thickens and coats the spoon, stirring constantly. Refrigerate until used. Boil whole potatoes with garlic, pepper, and dry minced onions. Drain water. Sprinkle a little cider vinegar over potatoes while still hot. After potatoes have cooled, cut into pieces. To make potato salad dressing, mix first salad dressing mixture and yogurt. Add dry Italian dressing mix to

taste. Toss with cut potatoes and refrigerate in covered container until ready to serve.



1 bunch fresh parsley

2 bay leaves

1 1/4 tablespoons crushed red pepper flakes

6 garlic cloves

1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

1 1/4 cups extra-virgin olive oil

Kosher salt

4 8-ounce Argentinian sirloin steaks, or skirt steaks

To make the chimichurri: Place parsley, bay leaves, red pepper flakes, garlic, oregano, vinegar, olive oil and salt, to taste, in a food processor. Pulse until well-combined. Put chimichurri in a glass or plastic container, using as needed. Chimichurri will keep for up to 6 months. Makes 2 1/2 cups. To grill steaks: Prepare a medium-hot fire in the grill. Season steaks with kosher salt. Place steaks on the grill and cook to desired doneness, about 4 to 6 minutes on each side. Transfer to a serving dish and spoon chimichurri

over each steak. Serve immediately.


Makes 4 main-dish servings or 8 side-dish servings

4 large zucchini (about 8 ounces each), cut lengthwise into halves

1 cup chopped red bell pepper

1 cup chopped onion

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 medium tomato, seeded and chopped

1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil or 1 teaspoon dried basil leaves

1 15-ounce can garbanzo or red beans, drained and rinsed (see note)

1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese (divided)

Hollow out zucchini with a sharp knife, leaving 1/4 -inch shells. Chop zucchini flesh that has been cut out. In a large skillet, saute chopped zucchini, bell pepper, onion and garlic in oil until tender-crisp, about 8 minutes. Add tomato and basil and saute until tomato is wilted and mixture is fairly dry, about 5 minutes. Add garbanzo beans to side of skillet; coarsely mash about half of them. Mix the beans and 2 tablespoons cheese into zucchini mixture. Spoon mixture into reserved zucchini shells; sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons cheese. Grill, covered, over medium-hot coals until zucchini

shells are tender-crisp when pierced with a sharp knife, 10 to 15 minutes. Note: You may substitute any variety beans for the garbanzo beans.


1 cup plain nonfat or low-fat yogurt

3 tablespoons soy sauce

2 teaspoons curry powder

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 1 1/2 -inch piece peeled fresh ginger

2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch chunks

Cherry tomatoes, pepper chunks, onion wedges, Japanese eggplant slices,

zucchini slices, mushrooms, to taste

Cucumber Mint Raita or Chutney Raita (recipes follow)

Place yogurt, soy sauce, curry powder, garlic and ginger in a blender or food processor; puree. Place with chicken chunks in a glass bowl or resealable plastic bag; marinate at least 2 hours or as long as overnight in refrigerator. Place chicken pieces on skewers, alternating with vegetables; grill or broil on medium heat for 7 to 10 minutes per side, or until cooked through. Serve over rice with Cucumber Mint Raita or Chutney Raita.




1 cup plain nonfat yogurt

3/4 cup seeded, finely diced English cucumber or hothouse cucumber

1 1/2 tablespoons finely shredded or chopped fresh mint

2 teaspoons honey

Pinch cumin

Pinch salt

Pinch ground red pepper

Pinch ground cinnamon

Pinch ground cloves

Stir together yogurt, cucumber, mint, honey, cumin, salt, pepper, cinnamon and cloves in a medium bowl; adjust flavors to taste. Makes 1 1/2 cups.


1 cup plain nonfat yogurt

2 tablespoons finely chopped chutney

3 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint

Stir together yogurt, chutney, cilantro and mint in a medium bowl. Makes 1 cup.


Call it a slow chile burn. This versatile marinade adds subtle, delicious heat to grilled meats and fish. Use it with chicken thighs or breasts, skirt steak, whole beef tenderloin, salmon fillets or steaks and shrimp brochettes. On his menu at Norman's Arizona, Norman Fierros offers adobado-marinated rabbit. "There's very little fat on rabbit, and when you grill it, it's out of this world." His choice of adobado-marinated fish is halibut.

3/4 cup white vinegar

1 1/2 cups water

1/3 cup dried Mexican oregano

2 tablespoons ground coriander

2 tablespoons ground cumin

2 tablespoons granulated garlic

1 tablespoon salt

1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper

12 dried New Mexican red chile pods, ends removed and roughly chopped

without removing seeds (if New Mexican chilies are not available, use other

whole dried Mexican chilies such as chile negro or chile pasilla; see note)

4 8-ounce halibut steaks or fillets

To make adobado: Combine the vinegar and water in a blender. Add oregano, coriander, cumin, granulated garlic, salt, pepper and chilies, and combine until well-incorporated. The mixture will be chunky because of the dried chilies. Store, tightly covered, in the refrigerator until ready to use. The marinade mixture will keep for approximately 2 months. Makes 2 1/4 cups. To make halibut: Place halibut steaks or fillets in a bowl and brush with adobado until sufficiently covered. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 to 3 hours.

To grill: Prepare a medium fire in the grill. Remove excess marinade and rub some olive oil onto the fillets before placing on grill to prevent sticking. Depending on thickness of fillets, grill fish 2 to 3 minutes on each side, or until fish flakes easily with a fork. Serve immediately. Note: Wear gloves when handling fresh, canned, dried or pickled chilies; the oils can cause a burning sensation on your skin.



The flavorful marinade not only punches up the flavor of the meat but also serves as a dressing on the citrus salad.

2 1/2 pounds beef skirt steak


1/4 cup lime juice (about 2 limes)

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

3 tablespoons chopped red onion

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice


6 cups salad greens

1 grapefruit, peeled and cut into segments

2 oranges, peeled and cut into segments


Thinly sliced red onion rings

Place skirt steak in a resealable plastic bag. Combine lime juice, oil, red onion, salt, cumin, pepper and allspice. Reserve half and pour remaining half over steak. Seal bag and marinate steak in refrigerator 4 hours or overnight, turning occasionally. Shortly before serving time, combine salad greens and grapefruit and orange segments in bowl. Remove steak from marinade; discard marinade. Grill over hot coals, turning once, until medium-rare (instant-read thermometer reads 135 degrees F), 6 to 8 minutes. Slice across the grain and transfer to a serving platter. Add reserved dressing to salad ingredients. Toss lightly. Garnish with red onion rings.



Even though the ostrich is a bird, its red meat tastes more like beef than

chicken. Be careful not to overcook it.

1 1/4 pounds ostrich or emu medallions or Perfect Portion filet, partially frozen so it

slices more easily (see note)

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary or 1/2 teaspoon dried

3 cloves garlic

1/2 teaspoon coarse salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Grilled asparagus and mushrooms (optional garnish)

Cut the medallions in 3/8 -inch horizontal slices and pat dry with paper towels. In a shallow dish, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, rosemary, garlic, salt and pepper. Put the ostrich slices in the marinade, turning once to coat both sides. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and marinate 30 to 60 minutes in the refrigerator.

Heat the grill or broiler. Lightly grease the grill. Grill the meat 1 minute on each side over medium-hot coals or until the inside is still slightly pink. Serve hot over a bed of grilled or sauteed asparagus and mushrooms. Note: Perfect Portion filets, from Nicky USA, are available in some markets. They are precut into 1-inch-thick, 3- or 5-ounce medallions. Kangaroo can be substituted for the ostrich or emu.



Mango mojo is an excellent complement to grilled tuna as well as pork loin, chicken breast and scallops. The fresh, clean taste of cilantro, the piquant bite of fresh chilies and faint crunch of red bell pepper highlight mango's sweetness with dynamic aplomb.

1 cup mango juice

1/2 teaspoon minced fresh ginger

2 ripe mangoes, peeled and cut into 1/8-inch dice

3 green onions, thinly sliced

1 red bell pepper, cut into 1/8-inch dice

2 tablespoons dried mango, minced

1 teaspoon crystallized ginger, minced

1/4 cup fresh lime juice (about 2 limes)

3 tablespoons minced cilantro

3 serrano chilies, minced (jalapeno can be substituted; see note)

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt or to taste

6 6-ounce tuna steaks, cut 1 inch thick

3 tablespoons olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

To make the mojo: Combine the mango juice and fresh ginger in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Continue boiling, reducing by half, about 7 to 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool completely. Add cooled mango juice to the diced mango, green onions, bell pepper, dried mango, crystallized ginger, lime juice, cilantro, chilies, oil and salt. Set aside.

To grill tuna: Prepare a medium fire in the grill. Oil and season the tuna steaks with olive oil, salt and pepper; arrange on the hot grate, and grill about 3 minutes per side per inch of thickness or until fish flakes easily with a fork. Transfer the fish to serving plates, spoon some mojo over each tuna steak and serve immediately. Note: Wear gloves when handling fresh, canned, dried or pickled chilies; the oils can cause a burning sensation on your skin.


For sponge cake:

1 cup cake flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

2 eggs plus 2 yolks

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup water

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

For haupia:

4 cups unsweetened coconut milk

2 cups water

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup cornstarch

For garnish:

1 tablespoon shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch round cake pan. For sponge cake: Sift flour and baking powder into a small mixing bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat eggs and yolks at high speed for about 4 minutes, or until thick. Gradually add sugar to eggs and beat at medium speed for 4 or 5 minutes, until light and fluffy. Add flour mixture to eggs and beat at medium-low speed until just combined. Put water and butter in a

saucepan and stir over medium heat until butter melts. Add to batter and beat until combined. Pour batter into prepared baking pan. Bake in oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or

until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cake cool in pan briefly, then remove and cool on a wire rack. Cover with plastic wrap or foil and place in freezer, preferably overnight.

For haupia: Place coconut milk, 1 cup water and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Mix cornstarch and remaining 1 cup water together in a bowl, add to the pan and stir until mixture returns to a boil and thickens. Remove from heat and keep warm in a double-boiler. Remove sponge cake from freezer and cut a thin slice off the top to level

off cake. Slice cake in half horizontally to make 2 even layers. Pour haupia over bottom layer, to a thickness of about 1/2 inch. Place top layer of cake over haupia, and press down gently. Pour more haupia over top of cake and use a spatula to spread it around evenly. Any remaining haupia can be spread over the sides with a spatula (or chill it in a small shallow pan, cut it into squares and serve with the cake) Refrigerate cake for 3 to 4 hours. When ready to serve, garnish with shredded coconut. Note: For best results, bake cake the day before (or even several days). To dress it up more, serve cake with a fresh tropical fruit salad.


2 cups butter (not margarine), softened (4 sticks)

2/3 cup granulated sugar

2 tablespoons water

4 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups finely ground hazelnuts (should resemble fine cornmeal)

Powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add water, flour and nuts. Mix well. Place dough into cookie press. Press dough onto ungreased cookie sheet to make 60 cookies. Bake about 12 minutes. Bottom of cookies should be a very light golden brown. Remove from oven, cool slightly and sift powdered sugar over the tops of cookies. Cool completely before removing from cookie sheet.


Serve this dish with crusty bread and a cucumber and tomato salad.

1 tablespoon Cajun spice mix

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 pound sardines, cleaned and heads removed

Salt, to taste

Lemon wedges, for garnish

Mix the Cajun spices with the pepper flakes. Sprinkle the lemon juice over the sardines. Season with salt. Sprinkle the spice mixture on the fish. Cook on a hot grill for 8 to 10 minutes, turning once. Squeeze lemon wedges over fish.


(Shi Zi Tou)


Some of Suzhou's best-known dishes are steamed or stewed, such as these pork

meatballs. Each large meatball is said to resemble a lion's head, and the cabbage suggests a lion's mane. The meatballs roast in the juice for a long time to become succulent and tender. This famous and popular Eastern Chinese main dish is comfort food - the Chinese equivalent of matzo ball soup -- and is regularly served at home.

There are as many variations of this recipe as there are families.

Pork seasonings:

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons dark sesame oil

1 tablespoon rice wine or dry sherry

1 tablespoon minced green onions

1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger

1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch

6 ounces canned water chestnuts, drained and minced

Pork coating:

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon water


2 pounds Chinese cabbage (napa cabbage)

4 tablespoons peanut, safflower or corn oil (divided)

1 tablespoon rice wine or dry sherry

4 cups low-sodium canned or homemade chicken broth or water

1 1/2 pounds ground pork (butt or picnic shoulder)

3/4 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon soy sauce

4 ounces dry bean threads (cellophane noodles) or hot cooked rice (optional)

Chopped green onions for garnish

To make pork seasonings: Combine salt, sesame oil, rice wine, green onions, ginger, cornstarch and water chestnuts; set aside.

To make pork coating: Combine cornstarch, soy sauce and water; set aside.

To make meatballs: Rinse the cabbage and drain thoroughly. Remove and set aside four of the big outer leaves. Cut the remaining leaves into 2-inch squares and discard the core. Heat a wok, add 1 tablespoon of oil, and heat until smoking. Add the firmer

sections of cabbage and stir-fry for about 1 minute over high heat, stirring constantly. Add the leafier sections and sprinkle the tablespoon of rice wine over the cabbage. Stir-fry for another minute and add the chicken broth. Cook the mixture for about 10 minutes over high heat; then transfer it to a heavy 3-quart casserole or a Dutch oven; set aside. Use a wide casserole so meatballs may be placed in one layer without crowding.

Break up the ground pork into a mixing bowl. Add the reserved pork seasoning and mix with your hands for about 5 minutes until combined evenly. Divide the meat into 4 portions and form them into large meatballs. Throw them back and forth between your hands. Reheat the wok, add the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil, and heat until very

hot. Dip the meatballs in the reserved pork coating and very gently slide them into the pan. Pan-fry the meatballs over high heat until all sides are brown. Remove them with a slotted spoon, and drain. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Arrange the meatballs on the cabbage in the casserole and cover with the 4 reserved cabbage leaves. Cover the casserole. Bake the casserole for 1 hour. Add the 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon soy sauce, stir, and bake 10 more minutes. If using bean threads, add them in the last 5 minutes of cooking and simmer until tender.

Pour all the contents over the meatballs in the serving dish. Sprinkle with green onions. Serve immediately with white rice if not using bean-thread noodles. Variation: You may substitute chopped cooked or canned crab meat or imitation crab meat for part of the ground pork.


1 small onion

6 1-ounce slices ounces American cheese

2 cups corkscrew or elbow macaroni

1/2 cup nonfat milk

Dash of pepper

Place the onion on the cutting board and use the sharp knife to chop the onion into small pieces. Unwrap the cheese slices and tear them into bite-size pieces. Set aside. Cook the macaroni in the saucepan, following the package directions. When the water comes to a boil, add the macaroni and onion so they cook together. Cook about 11 minutes, until the macaroni is done.

Return the warm macaroni/onion mixture to the saucepan after draining. Use a wooden spoon to stir in the cheese, milk and pepper. Put the saucepan on the burner. Turn the burner to medium heat. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until cheese is melted, stirring all the time. Serve with cooked green beans, a roll with jam, a fresh pear and milk.


The U.S. Department of Agriculture Meat and Poultry Hotline offers guidelines for food safety at back-to-school time. The object is to make sure that children's lunch boxes pack delicious eatables that are also supersafe.

The most basic advice bears repeating:

Keep everything clean when making and packing school lunches.

Other pointers include:

. Don't leave perishable foods at room temperature for more than two hours.

. Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold.

. School lunches can safely be made ahead of time and kept cold either in the home refrigerator or freezer.

. An insulated lunch bag is preferred, but double-bagged paper bags can also be used.

. Hot foods, such as soup, chili or stew, should be kept piping hot in an insulated container.

. Include a cold source, a freezer gel pack or a frozen juice box, in the insulated lunch box or paper bag.

. Put perishable meat, including deli meats, poultry or egg sandwiches, right next to the cold source.

. No leftovers! Tell children that if they don't finish a sandwich at lunch, throw it out.



1/3 cup dried apricots

1/3 cup dried cherries

1 cup water

1/2 cup butter (not margarine; 1 stick)

1/4 cup granulated sugar

11/3 cups sifted all-purpose flour (divided)

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar

2 eggs, lightly beaten

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon brandy or brandy flavoring

3/4 cup chopped walnuts (divided)

1 6-ounce white chocolate baking bar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place dried apricots and cherries in a small saucepan with the water. Bring to a boil and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes. Drain, cool and chop; set aside. In a medium bowl, beat butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy; stir in 1 cup flour. Pat mixture into a 9-inch square pan. Bake for 25 minutes.

Sift remaining 1/3 cup flour with baking powder and salt. Set aside Beat brown sugar and eggs together; add vanilla and brandy or brandy flavoring. Stir in sifted flour, then fruit and 1/2 cup nuts. Return to oven and bake 30 minutes. Remove from oven.

Immediately break white chocolate baking bar over the cookie top. When it softens, spread over the whole top with the back of a spoon; sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup nuts. Cool and cut into bars.



3/4 cup peeled elephant garlic cloves

1/2 large onion

4 bay leaves

1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano

1 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

2 cups white vinegar

1 1/2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce

1/4 cup fresh lime juice (2 to 3 limes)

1 1/2 cups olive oil

Puree garlic, onion, bay leaves, oregano, sugar, salt, vinegar, Tabasco sauce and lime juice in a food processor. Add olive oil slowly through feed tube with food processor still running. Refrigerate sauce.




1 package active dry yeast

1/4 cup warm water

2 3/4 to 3 cups all-purpose flour (divided)

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon salt

2/3 cup sour cream, at room temperature

6 tablespoons butter, melted ( 3/4 stick)

2 eggs

1 tablespoon grated orange peel (orange part only)


3/4 cup granulated sugar

3/4 cup toasted coconut (see note)

2 tablespoons grated orange peel (orange part only)

2 tablespoons melted butter


3/4 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup sour cream

1/4 cup butter ( 1/2 stick)

3 tablespoons orange juice

1/4 cup toasted coconut (see note)

To make cake: Dissolve yeast in warm water. Pour into large mixing bowl, add 3/4 cups flour, sugar, salt, sour cream, butter, eggs and orange peel. Beat 2 minutes at medium speed. By hand, stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour. Grease a 9-by-13-inch pan.

To make filling: In a small bowl, combine sugar, toasted coconut, orange peel and butter and set aside. Knead dough about 15 times. Divide dough in half. Roll half the dough into a 12-inch circle. Sprinkle with half the filling mixture. Cut into 12 wedges and roll each wedge, starting with wide end to form crescent-shaped rolls. Repeat with second half of dough. Place rolls in greased pan, three rows of 8 each. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake 25 to 30 minutes. Leave warm rolls in pan.

To make glaze: In a small saucepan, combine sugar, sour cream, butter and orange juice. Bring to a boil and stir for 3 minutes. Pour warm glaze over warm coffeecake. Sprinkle with coconut. Note: To toast coconut, place on a baking sheet and bake in a preheated 325-degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until lightly browned.


Serves 4 as an appetizer, 2 as entree

Peanut dipping sauce:

1/4 cup bean sauce or hoisin sauce

1/4 teaspoon crushed garlic

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil

2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup water


6 ounces ostrich thigh, inside round, or emu, or lean beef, such as flank or round steak,

sliced against the grain, 4 1/2 inches by 1/2 inch by 1/4 inch

3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon firmly packed brown sugar

Pinch of coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 sprigs fresh cilantro

2 tablespoons crushed roasted peanuts (optional)

To make sauce: In a small saucepan, stir together the bean or hoisin sauce, garlic, sugar, salt, oil and peanut butter. Stir in the 1/2 cup water. Cook over medium heat for 3 minutes. Let cool.

To make satay: Pat the meat dry with paper towels. In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, ginger, brown sugar, salt and pepper to make a marinade. Put the meat in the marinade, turning once to coat both sides, and marinate in the refrigerator for 30 to 60 minutes. Heat the grill or broiler.

Thread each piece of meat onto an individual bamboo or metal skewer, as if you were basting a hem, and grill over hot coals until the meat is medium-rare, about 1 1/2 minutes a side. Serve on a plate garnished with the cilantro sprigs, accompanied by a small bowl of the dipping sauce, garnished with the chopped peanuts.







1 10-ounce jar oysters

1/4 cup butter ( 1/2 stick)

1/2 cup buttermilk baking mix

1 1/2 tablespoons yellow cornmeal

1/4 teaspoon paprika

1/4 teaspoon garlic salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

2 eggs

Drain the oysters and cut in half if large, then pat them dry with paper towels. Put the butter in a foil-lined baking pan. Melt in a 425-degree oven, then remove. Keep oven on.

Combine the baking mix, cornmeal, paprika, garlic salt and pepper in a pie pan. In a small bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Dip the oysters in egg, then in cornmeal mix, and roll in the butter. Lay oysters out in the foil-lined pan, return to oven and bake uncovered about 15 minutes, or until golden brown. This is supposed to serve 2, but I'm not sure there'll be any left for you.


Makes roughly 10 cups

1/4 cup butter ( 1/2 stick)

2 small onions, chopped

1 bunch celery, chopped

1 tablespoon chopped fresh garlic

4 cups chicken broth

1 quart or more oysters, cut in half if large, saving the liquid

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

6 to 8 cups fresh bread crumbs or cubes (12 to 16 slices)

1 tablespoon ground sage

1 tablespoon dried thyme

Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup grated parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Melt butter in a large sauce pot or Dutch oven. Saute the onions, celery and garlic about 5 minutes, or until limp. Add the chicken broth and reserved oyster liquor and boil until reduced by one-third. Add chopped oysters and parsley and return to a boil. As soon as the mixture starts to boil, turn off the heat.

Stir in enough of the bread crumbs to make a moist -- not wet -- dressing. Add sage, thyme, salt and pepper. Stir in parmesan. Place in a 3-quart casserole. Bake about 45 minutes, until somewhat crusty on top and sides. Variations: Add cooked, crumbled Italian sausage. Use the stuffing to stuff a turkey.


1 pound unsalted butter, softened (2 cups; divided)

1 cup chopped green onions

1/2 cup chopped shallots

2 fennel bulbs, chopped fine

3 to 4 pounds spinach leaves, washed and dried

1/2 cup Pernod or anisette liqueur

2 tablespoons anchovies, rinsed

Kosher salt, to taste

Black pepper, to taste

2 1/2 cups toasted bread crumbs (divided; see note)

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

60 fresh oysters in the shell, scrubbed

Rock salt for broiling

Using 2 to 3 tablespoons butter, saute green onions, shallots and fennel until tender. Add spinach and cook until wilted. Remove vegetables and cool. Pour Pernod into pan and boil until sauce is reduced by half, scraping browned bits from the pan into the sauce. Puree vegetables in a food processor. Puree the remaining butter and

anchovies together. Add the vegetable puree, combine well and season to taste with salt and pepper. Fold in 2 cups of the bread crumbs. Spread rock salt in a shallow ovenproof pan. Open oysters and sever the abductor muscle that holds the two halves of the shell together. Discard the top shell of each oyster. Preheat the oven broiler. Lay the half-shells, with the oysters inside, on the rock salt, adjusting it so they stay level. Cover each oyster liberally with the vegetable-anchovy butter. Top with remaining 1/2 cup bread crumbs and parmesan cheese. Broil 4 inches from heat until oysters are golden brown and bubbling. Serve immediately. Remaining butter mix may be wrapped airtight and stored in freezer to be used as needed. Note: To toast bread crumbs, spread on baking sheet and bake in a 350-degree oven for 5 to 10 minutes.


Anchovies seem to pop up most often in Italian and other Mediterranean dishes. This recipe is adapted from a Sicilian recipe in the "Two Fat Ladies: Obsessions" book, in which it is titled "Orecchiette With Sprouting Broccoli." Orecchiette are "little ears," but any other pasta that holds sauce well, such as shells, can be substituted.

1 1/2 pounds orecchiette or other pasta, cooked

2 pounds broccoli or broccoli rabe, broken into florets

4 ounces salted anchovies or 2 ounces canned anchovy fillets, drained

1/4 cup olive oil

1/4 medium onion, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 pounds peeled fresh tomatoes (3 cups chopped) or 3 cups canned tomatoes

(see note)


1/3 cup pine nuts

3/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese (optional)

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside. Cook broccoli for about 3 minutes in boiling, salted water. Drain and set aside. If using salted anchovies, soak them in cold water for about 20 minutes; pat dry. Chop anchovies. Put oil in a frying pan, add onion and garlic, and fry until garlic turns golden. Add anchovies and tomatoes. Season with salt, bring to a boil, then cook for 15 minutes, or until tomatoes turn into a pulpy sauce. Add broccoli and pine nuts, and cook for about 2 minutes or until a fork easily pierces the broccoli.

Layer pasta, sauce mixture and parmesan in a large bowl. Toss and serve. Note: To peel tomatoes, plunge into boiling water for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove immediately and plunge into cold water. Skin should slip off easily.


1/2 pound penne or ziti

1 cup fresh flat-leaf (Italian) parsley, chopped fine

1 small red onion, chopped fine

2 tablespoons drained capers, chopped fine

Salt and pepper

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Vegetable oil for frying

4 fletches from fresh sardines (flesh cut from each side) or one 3.75-ounce

can brisling sardines, drained on paper towels

Bring a kettle of salted water to a boil. Cook pasta until al dente and drain well in a colander. In a bowl, toss together pasta, parsley, onion, capers and salt and pepper

to taste. Drizzle mixture with lemon juice and olive oil and toss to combine. In a 9- or 10-inch heavy deep skillet, heat 1/2 -inch vegetable oil on high until hot but not smoking. Gently lower half of sardines with a slotted spoon into oil. Fry sardines until crisp and golden, (about 1 minute for canned, 2 minutes for fresh) and transfer with slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Fry and drain remaining sardines in same manner. Add sardines to pasta and toss to combine.



2 pounds mixed green and yellow baby zucchini

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 pound penne

1/2 bunch fresh basil, stemmed and minced

1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Freshly ground parmesan cheese, for garnish

In a large pot of salted, boiling water, cook the zucchini for 2 minutes. Drain; let cool; cut into 1/2 -inch-thick slices. In a skillet, heat the oil; saute the garlic until soft, but not brown. Add the zucchini slices and saute until lightly browned. In a large pot of salted, boiling water, cook the penne according to package directions or until tender but firm to the bite. Drain. Mix the penne, zucchini and basil. Stir in the ricotta; add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with parmesan cheese on the side.


(Placek Ze Sliwkami)


2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup (1 stick) plus 3 tablespoons butter, at room temperature

3 tablespoons sour cream

1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons powdered sugar (divided)

1 egg yolk

1 teaspoon vanilla

Freshly grated peel of 1 lemon (yellow part only)

1 1/2 pounds fresh plums

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla sugar (see note)

Place flour in a large bowl. Add butter or margarine, sour cream, 1/2 cup powdered sugar, egg yolk, vanilla and lemon peel. Work flour mixture with your hands into a medium-soft dough. Press dough into a ball. Cover and refrigerate 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Butter sides and bottom of a 10-inch springform baking pan. Slice dough into round pieces approximately 1/2 inch thick. Reserve one end

slice, then place remaining slices in a flat layer on pan bottom. Press slices together and smooth dough with your fingertips. Roll reserved dough slice into a rope about 1/4 inch thick. Place dough rope along inside, against bottom dough layer. Gently press into dough and edge of pan sides. Halve plums lengthwise and remove pits. Arrange plums; cut sides up, on dough and gently press into dough. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Remove from oven. Sift the

remaining 3 tablespoons powdered sugar and vanilla sugar over plums. Let cool.

Note: Vanilla sugar is available at some specialty stores. You can make your own by burying a vanilla bean in granulated sugar or by adding powdered vanilla to granulated sugar. OR check page 829 in the Miscellaneous file.



2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1 1/2 cups finely ground hazelnuts

3/4 cup cold butter (not margarine; 1 1/2 sticks)

2 beaten eggs

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon grated lemon peel (yellow part only)

1 cup raspberry jelly

1 egg yolk

1 teaspoon milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In the work bowl of a mixer or food processor, combine flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder and ground hazelnuts. Cut in cold butter and mix by machine or with fingers until dough is crumbly. In small bowl, combine beaten eggs, lemon juice and lemon peel. Pour egg mixture into flour mixture and combine swiftly into a ball. Cover dough and refrigerate at least 1 hour. Grease 11-by-15-inch cookie sheet. Roll two-thirds of the dough to completely cover the sheet. Spread raspberry jelly over dough. On lightly floured surface, roll about two-thirds of leftover dough 1/4 inch or thinner and cut into 1/4 -inch-wide strips. Lay strips diagonally over jelly (you don't have to weave lattice work). Roll a 1/4 -inch-thick log of dough with remaining third of leftover dough. Press on edge of pastry to make a rim all the way around the edge of the dough. Combine egg yolk and milk and brush on strips and rim.

Bake 20 minutes. Let cool before cutting into 2-inch squares.


(Fresh Mexican Sauce)


According to Mexican gastronome Diana Kennedy, this crisp, fresh sauce goes with just about everything. It's an easy sauce that can be made up to 2 hours ahead and is best eaten immediately.

1/2 pound tomatoes, finely chopped (about 1 cup)

1/2 cup finely chopped white onion

1/3 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro

3 serrano chilies, or any fresh, hot green chilies, minced (see note)

Salt to taste

1/3 cup water (optional)

Mix tomatoes, onion, cilantro, chilies and salt to taste. Add water if you think the mixture is too thick. Serve at room temperature. Note: Wear gloves when handling fresh, canned, dried or pickled chilies; the oils can cause a burning sensation on your skin.







1/4 cup margarine

2 tablespoons bacon fat

1 small onion, diced

1/2 cup diced celery

3/4 pound red potatoes, scrubbed and diced (about 11/2 cups)

11/2 teaspoons minced garlic

3/4 teaspoon dried thyme

11/2 teaspoons dried tarragon

3/4 teaspoon dried dill weed

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

11/2 teaspoons paprika

7 cups fish stock (see note)

6 ounces smoked salmon, diced (1 cup)

1 dried bay leaf

1 tablespoon lemon juice

11/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1/8 teaspoon Tabasco sauce

3/4 teaspoon pepper

2 teaspoons salt, or to taste

1/4 cup chablis or other dry white wine

1 cup half-and-half

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

In a 4-quart pot, melt margarine and bacon fat. Saute the onion, celery, diced potatoes, garlic, thyme, tarragon and dill weed over medium heat, until the onions are translucent. Reduce heat and add the flour and paprika, blending well. Stir in the fish stock. Add the smoked salmon, bay leaf, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, pepper, salt and chablis. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in half-and-half and parsley. Remove bay leaf before serving. Note: Fish stock can be made following the directions in many basic cookbooks, or it can be purchased frozen from Pastaworks or other specialty food stores. Packets of dried fish base can be found at the supermarket.


1 pound spaghetti

4 to 6 tablespoons olive oil

1 small onion, minced

3 to 4 large ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced (see note)

1 clove garlic, minced

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Minced fresh basil, to taste

Parmesan or romano cheese (optional)

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add 1 tablespoon salt to the boiling water and stir in the spaghetti. Cook uncovered over high heat until the pasta is tender but still firm to the bite. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large saute pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and saute 1 to 2 minutes or until lightly golden. Lower the heat to medium-low. Drain the diced tomatoes and add to the onions, stirring gently for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the garlic, salt and pepper to taste and basil. Lower the heat and gently simmer the sauce until the pasta is cooked. Drain the spaghetti into a strainer and add it to the saute pan. Mix quickly over low heat until well-combined. Taste, adjust seasonings and serve at once topped with freshly grated parmesan or romano cheese.

Note: To peel tomatoes, plunge into boiling water for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove immediately and plunge into cold water. Skin should slip off easily.


2 12-ounce cans Spam, diced in 1/2-inch cubes

3 tablespoons mild taco sauce

4 eggs

3/4 cup milk

11/4 cups buttermilk baking mix

1/2 cup sour cream

2 to 3 cups chopped lettuce

3/4 cup chopped tomato

1/4 cup chopped green onions

2 cups grated cheddar cheese (8 ounces)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a skillet, brown diced Spam; add taco sauce. Spoon meat into a greased 9-by-9-by-2-inch baking dish. In a bowl, beat eggs and milk. Add baking mix; mix well. Pour over meat and sauce.

Bake, uncovered, 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool for 5 to 10 minutes.

Spread sour cream over the top; sprinkle with chopped lettuce, tomato, onions and grated cheese. Serve immediately.


(Chayote Relleno)

3 chayote squash

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 onion, finely chopped

3/4 pound lean ground beef

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 to 3 jalapeno chilies, seeded and minced (see note)

3 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped (see note)

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds, crushed

1/2 cup raisins

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese (optional)

Cut the chayote in half lengthwise and remove the seed. Cook the squash in lightly salted water to cover until tender-crisp, about 25 minutes. Drain and scoop out most of the flesh, leaving a 1/4 -inch shell. Set shells aside and chop flesh.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat the oil in a skillet and saute the onion until it is soft. Add the ground beef, garlic and jalapenos, and cook over medium heat until the meat

is no longer pink. Add the tomatoes, oregano, cumin, raisins and reserved chayote flesh. Combine well. Gently pile the mixture into the reserved chayote shells. Sprinkle with

cheese. Set in baking dish and bake 15 to 20 minutes. Note: Wear gloves when handling fresh, canned, dried or pickled chilies; the oils can cause a burning sensation on your skin.

Note: To skin tomatoes, plunge into boiling water for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove immediately and plunge into cold water. Skin should slip off easily.


2 tablespoons butter

2 pounds sweet potatoes (OR yams), peeled and rough-cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces

1 large Granny Smith apple, cored and cut into wedges (peeling is optional)

1 pear, cored, peeled and sliced

1/2 cup fresh cranberries

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 cup honey

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add sweet potatoes and saute 10 minutes, stirring often. Add apple wedges, pear slices, cranberries, nutmeg and honey and stir to combine. Cover and cook 5 minutes. Remove cover and continue cooking 3-5 minutes or until sweet potatoes and apples are tender. Serve warm.


(keep it simple)


I TRY to keep tomato preparations uncomplicated (and thus quick) to let the flavor of tomatoes come through. A simple salad of sliced tomatoes and sweet red onions with olive oil and balsamic vinegar is about as good as it gets, except perhaps for freshly made salsa with tomatoes, cilantro and jalapeņo peppers.

Salsa also means ``sauce'' in Italian. Pureed or chopped tomatoes combined with garlic sauteed in olive oil make a quick marinara sauce for pasta. Even quicker is an uncooked tomato sauce seasoned with basil, olive oil and a hint of garlic.

Green beans are another vegetable that is usually better from local sources in summer. One key to cooking green beans quickly is to use no more than a quart of water for a pound of beans. Starting with hot tap water speeds up the process. For a side vegetable, try blanched green beans sauteed in butter and olive oil with shallots and bread crumbs. For a different taste, saute the green beans with lemon rind and minced anchovy fillet.

Green beans also can be combined with new potatoes and sweet onion in a warm salad. For a hearty side dish to go with roast chicken or lamb, quickly stew wider Romano or Italian green beans with tomatoes and black olives. In the tomato and mozzarella salad below, it's as important to use truly fresh mozzarella (made that day, if you can find it) as it is to use ripe local tomatoes and local basil.



1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

1/2 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

8 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter (1 stick)

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

About 2 tablespoons ice water


2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

4 red bell peppers, cut into 1/4 -inch-thick slices

1 cup sliced onion

1/2 teaspoon salt

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


5 ripe plum tomatoes

10 anchovy fillets, rinsed and drained

15 oil-cured black olives, halved and pitted

4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

To make the pastry: In a medium bowl, toss the flour, thyme, salt and pepper. Cut in the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, with a pastry blender, two knives or your fingertips until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the mustard and enough ice water for the mixture to hold together. Form it into a ball, cover with plastic wrap, and chill for 30 minutes. To make the filling: Heat the oil in a large skillet. Stir in the bell peppers, onion, salt and pepper. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and thick, 30 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and allow to cool to room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, roll the chilled dough out to form an 11-inch circle. Transfer it to a 10-inch tart pan with removable bottom, and press the pastry onto the bottom and sides. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the filling mixture to the tart pan, discarding any accumulated liquid in the bowl.

To make the topping: Halve the tomatoes lengthwise, and scoop out and discard the centers. Halve them again lengthwise. Arrange 5 rows of tomato strips, alternating with rows of anchovies, across the filling. Sprinkle the olives on top. Combine the garlic and oil, and spoon over the tart. Sprinkle with pepper and thyme. Bake until the filling is bubbling and the crust is golden, 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and let stand 10 minutes before serving.



1 (14-ounce) package very firm tofu, drained

1/4 cup soy sauce

1/2 cup saltine cracker crumbs

1/2 cup flour

1 teaspoon garlic salt

2 tablespoons vegetable oil, for the baking sheet

Cut the tofu into 1-inch nugget-size pieces. In a bowl, marinate the tofu chunks in the soy sauce for 5 to 10 minutes. While the tofu is marinating, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a medium-size bowl, mix together the cracker crumbs, flour, and garlic salt. Lightly brush a cookie sheet with the vegetable oil. Roll the nuggets in the cracker crumb mixture and lay them on the cookie sheet, not touching one another. Bake for 15 minutes. Flip the nuggets and bake for another 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool for 5 to 10 minutes. Serve warm. Serves: 2-3 people


(Corn-Stuffed Tomatoes)


4 large, ripe tomatoes

1 1/2 cups cooked corn kernels

1/2 cup chopped cooked ham

1/2 cup chopped onion

4 tablespoons mayonnaise (divided; see note)

2 cups shredded lettuce

Cut off the tops of the tomatoes and remove the pulp with a spoon. Remove and discard seeds. Chop the pulp. Mix the pulp with the corn, ham, onion and 2 tablespoons mayonnaise. Fill the hollowed tomatoes with the mixture and top with a dollop of mayonnaise. Serve cold on a bed of shredded lettuce. Note: The original recipe calls for 1 cup of homemade mayonnaise flavored with 3 cloves of crushed garlic. You can use prepared mayonnaise and add garlic to taste.



1 package active dry yeast

3/4 cup warm water (105 to 115 degrees F)

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons olive oil (divided)

1 cup shredded provolone cheese (4 ounces)

5 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese (divided)

1 1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning (divided)

1/8 teaspoon pepper

2 large, ripe tomatoes, sliced thin

Dissolve yeast in warm water; let stand 5 minutes. If using food processor: Combine flour and salt in work bowl of food processor fitted with metal blade. Stir in yeast mixture and 3 tablespoons olive oil. Process until ingredients form a ball. Process 1 minute longer. Turn out onto lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, about

2 minutes. If mixing dough by hand: Combine flour and salt in a mixing bowl. Stir in

yeast mixture and 3 tablespoons olive oil until ingredients form a ball. Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and satiny, about 10 minutes.

After kneading, place dough in oiled bowl (using 1/2 tablespoon olive oil). Turn dough over to oil top. Cover and let rise in warm place until double in bulk, about 30 minutes. Punch dough down. Let rest 5 minutes. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Use 1/2 tablespoon olive oil to oil a 10-inch cake pan, deep-dish pizza pan or spring form pan, and fit dough into it. Brush top with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Cover and let rise 15 minutes. Bake dough 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden. Cool completely in pan on wire rack. Lower heat to 350 degrees. Combine provolone, 1/4 cup parmesan, 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning and pepper. Cut baked focaccia horizontally in half. Place bottom half on cookie sheet. Cover with sliced tomatoes; sprinkle with cheese mixture. Cover with top of focaccia. Brush with remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil; sprinkle with

remaining 1 tablespoon parmesan cheese and 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning. Bake 10 minutes, or until cheese inside is melted. Cut into wedges and serve immediately.


3 tablespoons butter, at room temperature

1/2 cup smooth or chunky peanut butter

3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

1 cup mashed banana (2 medium bananas)

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 eggs

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

Pinch salt

1/4 cup quick-cooking oatmeal, uncooked

1 cup dried pineapple chunks

Before you start: Wash your hands thoroughly with hot, soapy water. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Wet the inside of a 13-by-9-inch baking pan and shake out the excess water. Spread a piece of foil over the bottom and sides of the baking pan and press it firmly into the corners. Spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large bowl, using a large spoon, beat the butter, peanut butter and brown sugar together until smooth and light. Beat in the banana and vanilla. Beat in the eggs one at a time, until the batter is smooth and light. In another bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Put the oatmeal and dried pineapple into the bowl of the food processor and pulse until finely chopped. You may need an adult to help you with this

part. Stir the flour mixture and the oatmeal mixture into the butter mixture. Spread the batter in the prepared pan, smoothing the top with a flat metal spatula. Bake for 25 minutes, until golden brown around the edges. Use pot holders to remove the pan from the oven and place it on a heatproof surface. Cool completely before cutting. Have an adult help you cut the bars. Lay a jellyroll pan or cookie sheet over the top of the baking pan and turn it upside down. Peel the foil off the bars. Lay a cutting board over the bars

and invert again. Cut the bars lengthwise and crosswise, making 16 bars. Wrap individual bars in plastic wrap, or store them in an airtight container.



1 small onion, sliced

3 cloves garlic, crushed

2 1/2 cups sauvignon blanc or other dry white wine

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

3 cups chicken broth (if using canned, use no-salt variety)

Salt and pepper

2 cups peeled, seeded and chopped fresh tomatoes (see note)

1/4 cup butter ( 1/2 stick)

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/3 cup thinly sliced basil leaves (do not cut until ready to use)

Combine onion, garlic and wine and bring to simmer. Carefully ignite fumes of wine (if flame blows out, reduce stove-top heat). When flame subsides, pour into noncorrosive container large enough to contain breast pieces without overlapping. Chill. Add breasts to cold marinade; they should be completely covered. Cover and refrigerate 24 to 36 hours.

Remove chicken breasts from marinade and set them aside. Strain liquid into small saucepan. Bring gently to simmer; do not allow mixture to boil. Skim surface of anything that floats to top. Continue simmering and skimming until wine is clear; this will take at least 20 minutes. Add chicken broth to wine and, skimming as it cooks, reduce gently to 1/2 cup. This will take about 45 minutes.

Remove chicken breasts from liquid and season them with salt and pepper to taste at least 5 minutes before cooking, then grill over medium-high heat until cooked through but still moist inside, 5 to 6 minutes a side. Add tomatoes to reduced wine and broth, bring to simmer and stir in butter by the tablespoon until incorporated. Add oil. Add basil leaves. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Divide sauce among 4 plates and top with grilled chicken breast. Note: To peel tomatoes, plunge into boiling water for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove immediately and plunge into cold water. Skin should slip off easily.


Multnomah Falls Lodge


2 cups milk

2 tablespoons margarine

3/4 cup honey

2 tablespoons salt

1/4 cup shelled sunflower seeds, or more to taste

1/4 cup sesame seeds

4 cups all-purpose flour

6 packets active dry yeast (see editor's note)

1 cup lukewarm water

5 cups whole-wheat flour

Butter for glazing tops

Heat milk and margarine until warm. Combine honey, salt and sunflower and sesame seeds in a large bowl. Add milk mixture and mix. Add all-purpose flour and mix.

Dissolve yeast in warm water and add to mixture. Add whole-wheat flour and mix well. Place dough on floured surface and knead until smooth, about 10 to 15 minutes. Place in greased bowl. Let rise in warm place until doubled, about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Portion into 3 loaves and let rest 10 minutes. Put into 3 greased 9-by-5-inch loaf pans and let rise about 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until you hear a hollow sound when tapping top of loaf. Remove from oven and butter tops. Editor's note: You can use 3 packets of yeast, but allow more time for rising.


A Hamburger Relish


Makes about 7 half pints

2 sticks cinnamon (2 to 3 inches each), broken up

2 teaspoons whole cloves, slightly crushed

2 teaspoons whole allspice, slightly crushed

1 quart cider vinegar

4 cups coarsely chopped peeled and seeded tomatoes (about 6 large; see note)

2 cups granulated sugar

4 teaspoons mustard seeds

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

4 cups chopped firm, unpeeled cucumbers (do not use waxed cucumbers)

1 1/2 cups chopped red bell peppers

1 1/2 cups chopped green bell peppers

1 cup chopped celery

1 cup chopped onions

1 1/2 tablespoons turmeric

1/2 cup pickling salt

2 quarts water

Tie the cinnamon, cloves and allspice loosely in a square of cheesecloth. Combine vinegar with the bag of spices in a pan (see note). Bring the vinegar to boiling, adjust the heat and simmer the mixture uncovered for 15 minutes. Add the tomatoes, bring the mixture to a boil, then adjust the heat and simmer the mixture, partly covered, stirring and smooshing the tomatoes occasionally, until it resembles a puree, about 30 minutes. Add the sugar,

mustard seeds and cayenne. Pour the mixture into a bowl, cover, and let stand overnight at room temperature. Combine the cucumbers, red and green peppers, celery and onion in a ceramic or stainless-steel bowl. Sprinkle the turmeric and salt over the vegetables, then add the 2 quarts water. Stir the mixture, cover it, and refrigerate overnight along with the tomato mixture. Drain the liquid from the salted vegetables and replace it with enough fresh cold water to cover them; let the vegetables soak for 1 hour, then drain them in a colander, pressing lightly. Return the vinegar/tomato mixture to pot and bring it to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the drained vegetables, then return the relish to a full boil, stirring frequently, and cook it, uncovered, over high heat, for 5 minutes. Remove the relish from the heat. Remove the spice bag from the relish; squeeze all liquid from the bag into the pot, then discard the bag.

Meanwhile, wash 7 half-pint (or combination of pint and half-pint) jars. Keep hot until needed. Prepare lids as manufacturer directs.

Ladle the hot relish into 1 hot jar at a time, leaving 1/2 -inch head space. Wipe rim with a clean damp cloth. Attach lid. Fill and close remaining jars. Process half pints and pints in a boiling-water canner 10 minutes (15 minutes 1,000 to 6,000 feet; 20 minutes above 6,000 feet). Note: To peel tomatoes, plunge into boiling water for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Remove immediately and plunge into cold water. Skin should slip off easily. Note: Do not use aluminum or iron cookware for this recipe. The acids in the ingredients could react with the metal, giving the food an off-taste.




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