Archive for December, 2010

Meatballs – A small batch

1/2 pound meatloaf mix (combination of beef, pork, and veal)
1 slice of bread (cubed, soaked thoroughly in water or milk, and drained completely)
1 teaspoon ketchup
1 teaspoon mustard
sprinkling of granulated garlic (or 1 clove minced if you feel so inclined), basil, and oregano
1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese
1 egg
salt and pepper to taste

Mix all together
form into golf ball-sized balls, brown well in some oil, and remove from pan

1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1  14 ounce can of diced tomatoes
1  8 ounce can of tomato sauce
In the dirty pan, brown onions and garlic
add tomatoes and sauce

Return meatballs to the sauce
simmer for 20 minutes, covered
season sauce to taste

December 30, 2010 at 9:19 pm Leave a comment

Schnitzel – A small batch


As defined by Wikipedia
Schnitzel is a traditional Austrian dish consisting of an escalope coated in breadcrumbs and shallow fried. It is a popular part of Viennese and Austrian cuisine. In Austria the dish, called Wiener Schnitzel (Viennese Schnitzel), is traditionally served with a lemon slice and either potato salad or potatoes with parsley and butter. Although the traditional Wiener Schnitzel is made of veal, it is now often made of pork. When made of pork, it is often called Schnitzel Wiener Art (Germany) or Wiener Schnitzel vom Schwein (Austria) to differentiate it from the original.

In this version I used pork, just because that’s what I had in the freezer. And my breading technique is one step shorter than the traditional way, which I think keeps the breading from falling off the cutlet after frying.

4 pork cutlets, thin cut and boneless, pounded thin (or 2 thick-cut sliced into 4 pieces)
1 egg, scrambled with a splash of water or milk
3/4 cups bread crumbs
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons corn meal
salt, pepper, garlic powder, oregano, and cayenne (all to taste)

Place the scrambled egg on a plate
then mix the rest of the ingredients in a second plate
dredge the cutlets first in the egg wash until well coated
then dredge the cutlets in the bread crumb mixture until well coated
fry in a shallow pan with about 1/4 inch of oil, until golden brown
drain on paper towel

December 26, 2010 at 6:42 pm Leave a comment

Chicken a La King – A small batch

This brings back memories of my childhood; my dad breaking open a can of Swanson’s for a Sunday lunch. Served with a slice of bread, to wipe the bowl clean, yum… This version is lighter, chock full of veggies, and missing the stabilizers listed on the side of the can.

1 medium onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1 small package mushrooms, sliced
1 rib celery, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons oil
1/4 cup flour
1 cup milk
1 cup chicken stock
1 1/2 to 2 cups cooked chicken, pulled into pieces
1 small jars pimentos
salt and pepper to taste

Put butter and oil in a Dutch oven
sauté onions, pepper, celery, mushrooms, and garlic until soft
stir in flour, salt and pepper, and cook for a minute
add stock and milk, stirring well to remove the lumps
heat until boiling
reduce heat, add chicken and pimentos
stir well and simmer until desired thickness

Serve with bread or over rice

December 16, 2010 at 6:13 pm Leave a comment


Nothing reminds me more of my time in Philadelphia, than Stromboli. To those of you that are not familiar with this Philly delicacy, it’s similar to a calzone, but ricotta is not the main ingredient. It’s usually filled with mozzarella and lots of cold cuts. You can add sauce, I do, but sometimes it’s served on the side.

This version is filled with mozzarella, pepperoni, tomato sauce, and caramelized onions.

Preheat oven to 400°

shape pizza dough into circles, store bought works great
load half to your hearts content
fold dough over and seal the seam well with some water
brush the top with oil and sprinkle with granulated garlic
don’t forget the slits to let out the steam
bake for 25 minutes, or until golden brown

December 11, 2010 at 12:50 pm Leave a comment



I know, I know, you’re all groaning and rolling your eyes at this latest endeavor. I can hear you calling me crazy from here. But really, it’s easy. I could never express the joy and pleasure of a homemade marshmallow in writing. Saying I’ve been considering and contemplating homemade marshmallows for years, would not be hyperbole. So, with a bit of research, today is the day. This is a smaller recipe than most, and does not use corn syrup or egg whites. I highly recommend a standing mixer over a hand held version, if you choose to attempt.

1 cup water, divided
2  packets unflavored gelatin
2 cups granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or any flavor extract of your choice)
a pinch of salt
powdered sugar for dusting and coating the pan and cut marshmallows
candy thermometer

Combine the 2 packets of gelatin and 1/2 cup water in the bowl of the mixer and set aside

Grease and sugar 9 x 13 pan and set aside

In a heavy bottom pot combine 2 cups of granulated sugar and a 1/2 cup water, cook over medium heat, stirring as needed to prevent scorching until sugar is completely dissolved
using a candy thermometer, cook until syrup reaches the soft ball stage or 240°F

Careful with this next step, syrup is very hot and can burn

Start the mixer on the lowest speed and very slowly and very carefully pour the hot syrup over gelatin already in mixing bowl
add a pinch of salt and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
let mixer go for 10-15 minutes at medium speed until mixture cools a bit
then switch to high until it’s white and fluffy, and temperature has reduced significantly

Pour into prepared pan, dusting the top with more powdered sugar and let stand for a minimum of 1 hour, 4 is better

Cut into cubes with a very thin knife or pizza cutter, and toss with more powdered sugar until well coated and the marshmallows don’t stick to each other

December 7, 2010 at 6:13 pm Leave a comment

Scones – A small batch

1/2 cup AP flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/8  teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg or cinnamon
3 1/2 tablespoons butter, unsalted, cold, cut into bits
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup dried fruit
3 tablespoons buttermilk
orange zest, optional

Preheat oven to 400°

mix flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices (as always, whole wheat flour can be used, but the end result will not be as tender, only healthier)
cut butter into flour mixture
add dried fruit, zest and oats
sprinkle in buttermilk and mix with a fork until dough comes together
turn mixture onto floured work surface and kneed until it sticks together
pat into plate shape approximately 1 inch thick, and cut into wedges
sprinkle with sugar (you may have to dap the top with milk or water to get the sugar to stick)

bake for 15 minutes

December 3, 2010 at 2:22 pm 2 comments

Granola – A small batch

2 cups rolled oats
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3  cup assorted nuts and/or seeds, whole or roughly chopped
1/2  cup dried fruit
1/2 cup shredded coconut

Preheat the oven to 350°

line a baking sheet with parchment paper, foil or a Silpat
in a bowl, stir together the oil, honey, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and salt. Whisk until completely combined
pour the honey mixture over the oats and nuts, use your hands to combine well, making sure all of the oats are coated with the honey mixture. Make some clumps by making a fist
pour the mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Spread it out evenly, but leave a few clumps here and there for texture
bake for 15 minutes, stirring once
add coconut and dried fruit, toss, and bake for an additional 15 minutes, again stirring once

December 2, 2010 at 4:45 pm Leave a comment

Salmon Cakes


1 large can salmon, remove visible bones and skin
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1 small onion, chopped
1 rib celery, chopped
1 carrot, chopped or grated
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tablespoons mayonnaise (or more if you feel the mixture is dry)
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
chili powder to taste
1 teaspoon dry oregano
1 teaspoon  dry basil
1 teaspoon dry parsley
salt and pepper to taste

Sauté onion, garlic, carrot, and celery and cool slightly

mix all ingredients together
add garlic powder, chili powder, salt and pepper, oregano, dry basil, dry parsley to taste
form into patties and refrigerate (I use the rim of a large mason jar lid, lined with plastic wrap for uniformity)
once chilled (approximately 30 minutes), dust lightly with flour and fry in vegetable oil
let cooked cakes rest on paper towel lined plate to absorb extra oil from sautéing

Serve on rolls with lettuce and your favorite condiment. Or, make smaller cakes and serve with a salad.

I don’t make a small batch, since these freeze really well. Wrapped individually once cooked and reheated in the microwave.

December 1, 2010 at 6:31 pm Leave a comment

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December 2010