Archive | January, 2015

Baby Beef Braciole with Pasta

30 Jan

Baby Beef Braciole with Pasta

My grandson is allergic to milk so I have started to modify some of my recipes.

One pound of thin sliced bracoile meat

12  slices of thin sliced imported ham

Salt and Pepper

One large sliced onion

2 tablespoons olive oil

3 cloves sliced garlic

16 ounces beef broth

1/2 cup flour  mixed with 1/4 teaspoon salt, pepper and garlic powder

One pound of vegetable pasta

You should have about 5 to 6 slices of meat in a pound.

Lie them on your work station

Cover them with plastic wrap and pound with your rubber mallet just until you flatten the meat to an equal thickness.

Braciole meat has to be tenderized so pounding it is important.

Season with salt and pepper

Place one to two  slices of ham on each piece on meat

Roll up the meat very tight

I cut the meat into two inch pieces

Wrap in plastic wrap individually and freeze

When you want to cook them just take out the amount you need and defrost them.

Heat the oil in a nonstick skillet with a cover.

Dredge the meat rolls in the flour

Place the meat in the hot skillet and brown on all sides

Do not cook all the way just brown the meat on all sides.

Add the garlic and onion to the pan and cook for about two minutes.

Add the beef broth

Stir into the pan and make sure nothing is sticking on the bottom.

Bring to a boil and lower the heat to barely a simmer.

Cover for an hour

Cook your pasta and drain.

Serve one to two rolls and about one cup of pasta  in each plate.

Spoon some sauce over the pasta.

This was modified for my grandchildren but all the adults loved it.






Tomato Okra

27 Jan

Tomato Okra

I never ate okra as a child. My Mom just didn’t cook it.

I had it for the first time at a friends house and loved it.

So this started my trial and error trying to cook it .

After many, many pounds of okra all I had was this slimy vegetable that couldn’t get past my lips. So I stopped trying to cook it.

Last week I was at my friend Maria’s again, I am a real pest.

She was cooking okra and showed me how to do it right.

3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 chopped onion

3 cloves chopped garlic

One pound bag of frozen okra, do not defrost it.

One 14 ounce can of diced San Martino tomatoes

Two small cans of tomato sauce.

One teaspoon dried parsley

Four basil leaves

Salt and pepper

Optional spices are oregano and crushed red pepper. I just love basil and put it in everything.

Saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil till the onions are soft

Add the diced tomatoes and bring to a boil

Add the frozen okra, parsley, basil, salt and pepper.

Cover the okra with the tomato sauce

Push the okra down with a spoon  so it is covered with the liquid

Cover the pot and let simmer until the sauce starts to thicken and the okra looks cooked about 20 to 30 minutes.


If you start stirring the pot the okra gets slimy because it starts to break up.

I made this the other night and we ate the entire pound.

It is easy, delicious and different.

Thank you Maria


Spicy Tortilla Soup

26 Jan

Tortilla Soup Tortilla Soup

This is a delicious soup for a cold night or a summer BBQ.

3 tablespoons oil

One large chopped onion

2 cloves chopped garlic

One diced red pepper

One diced hot pepper.

I usually use a jalapeno and take the seeds out.

One teaspoon  ground cumin

48 ounces of chicken broth

Two 14.5 ounce can of Rotelle or any other diced tomatoes with chili.

1/2 jar of salsa about 8 to 10 ounces.

One cup of corn

1/2 cup chopped cilantro

One can of rinsed and drained black beans

2 cups or more of pulled pork or leftover diced chicken

Tortilla chips crushed

Shredded Monterrey Jack or any other cheese you like

Sour cream




Heat the oil

Add the onions and garlic and cook till soft

Add the peppers and season with salt and pepper

Add the cumin and cook just for a couple of minutes. You can actually smell it cook.

Then add your broth, tomatoes, black beans and corn and about 1/4 cup of the cilantro.

Let this cook for five minutes then add your pork or chicken.

Cook for another ten to fifteen minutes.

Spoon the soup into big bowl and add the crushed chips, cheese, sour cream, cilantro, diced avocado and lime wedges.

I usually serve this with cheese quesedilla, grilled cheese or potato pancakes






Shrimp Salad

23 Jan

Shrimp Salad

This is a combination of two recipes and my family loved it,

3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

One big paper thin sliced red onion

Salt and pepper

Two cups of rough chopped fresh Italian parsley

1/4 cup capers

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

4 tablespoons lemon juice

3 tablespoons lemon zest

1 1/2 pounds of U 16-20 peeled and de-veined shrimp. Leave the tails on.

Two large cloves of chopped garlic

1/4 teaspoons cayenne pepper

1/4 teaspoon salt

Two tablespoons olive oil

Honey for garnish

Mix the mint, onion, salt, pepper, parsley, capers, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 2 tablespoons lemon zest and 1/4 cup olive oil

Set aside

Heat the remaining two tablespoons of olive oil on high heat

Add the garlic and remaining lemon zest for one minute

Salt and pepper the shrimp

Add the shrimp and stir fry till pink and firm about another two to three minutes

Take off the heat and add the remaining lemon juice

Pour the shrimp over the parsley salad

Drizzle with honey and serve with fresh Italian bread

I served this with a wedge of  melted brie.


Scallops and mushrooms in a wine and cheese sauce

21 Jan

This is an oldie but goodie of mine.
I have been making this since I got my Betty Crocker Cookbook forty years ago.
I love the old cookbooks.
They are full of basic and fabulous recipes that are all delicious.
I always make this on Christmas Eve and then maybe once again during the year because it is so rich.
Four pounds of bay scallops
2 cups of dry white wine
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons butter
4 cups of sliced mushrooms
4 scallions
One small chopped onion
6 tablespoons butter
6 tablespoons flour
One cup of half and half
One cup of shredded cheddar cheese
4 slices American cheese
2 Chicken bouillon cubes
Put the scallops, wine, parsley and salt in a saucepan
Add water to cover the scallops.
Bring to a boil and then simmer for about ten minutes.
Drain the scallops and save the liquid.
Boil the liquid till it is reduced by half.Save and set aside
Heat the 4 tablespoons of butter till melted.
Add the scallions, onion and mushrooms.
Cook till the onions are soft and the mushrooms are cooked.
Set aside in a dish.
Melt the 6 tablespoons of butter in a pan and then take off the heat.
Add the flour and mix well.
Place back on a low heat.
Slowly add the liquid and stir till everything is smooth.
Add the scallops, mushroom and onion mixture,Half and half, cheese and chicken bouillon.
Heat on low till the cheese is melted and the mixture is hot.
You can add buttered crumbs on the top but I just serve this in bowls and everyone devours it.

Sweet Potato Soup

20 Jan

Sweet Potato Soup

This is a delicious creamy soup for a cold winter day.

3 extra large sweet potatoes

2 medium white potatoes

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 large chopped onions

3 chopped carrots

1 stalk chopped celery

3 cloves garlic

1 cup red or white wine

6 to 8 cups chicken stock

1 1/2 cup half and half or cream

1/4 cup brown sugar

Microwave the sweet potatoes and white potatoes  till a fork can pierce them. You can also boil them with the teaspoon of salt.

Set aside.

Cook the onions, carrots, celery, garlic in the oil till soft

Add the wine and cook till it is at least 1/2 evaporated

Add the inside if all the potatoes, brown sugar and the chicken stock. Do not use the skin.

Puree with a blender till it is nice and smooth

Add the cream and salt and pepper.

I served it with dots of sriracha sauce and a sausage sandwich.

This is another takeoff from Saveur Magazine.

Broccoli Rabe and Beans

16 Jan

broccoli rabe

Love broccoli rabe. I ate a ton of it when I was pregnant and never stopped.

6 tablespoons olive oil

8 big cloves of sliced garlic

2 big bunches of broccoli rabe

one teaspoon of salt

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

2 tablespoons chicken consume or 4  bouillon cubes

1 1/2 cup water

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Heat the oil in a big pot

Add the garlic and cook till soft but not brown

Cut the bottom 1/2 inch stems off the rabe and discard

Cut the remaining rabe into one inch pieces

Put everything into the pot including the beans

Cover the pot and let it simmer for about ten to fifteen minutes

Stir and it is ready to eat

The rabe should be soft

Season with salt and pepper if needed

Serve as a side dish or just in a bowl with crunchy bread

Great with sausage

This also makes a delicious pizza topped with cheese

Try an omelet the next day. You will love it.