Monday, January 31, 2011

Peppers Stuffed with Chicken Sausage and Brown Rice

The stuffing for the peppers was made with sauteed onions, zucchini and the Chicken sausage. Seasonings were salt, pepper, crushed red pepper and oregano. The peppers topped with a marinara sauce I made from tomatoes I canned this summer with my dad. Then the peppers were baked for 30 minutes at 375 degrees. This was a very good dinner.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Pork, Potatoes and Vinegar Peppers

For dinner I was planning on making Spicy Pork Tenderloin with Potatoes from Real Simple. But as I was reading the recipe I remembered I saw something very similar to this in Cooking with Chef Silvio. And I figured seeing I made bread from See Naples... Then Eat! that I should stick with the pattern.
The Chef Silvio recipe was so easy. Saute the Pork Tenderloin, cut into cubes, along with hot peppers and cubed potatoes. Season it with salt and pepper and that is it. This recipe had less ingredients than the recipe but the flavors were nice and spicy.
The Pork was delicious and the bread, well we devoured half a loaf!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Escarole and Bean Soup

This meal reminds me of my mom. We had this quite often when I was growing up. This recipe came from Cooking With Chef Silvio. I added the kielbasa because someone I know really likes meat for dinner. Actually my mom added all sorts of meat to this so maybe Chris would have liked her version of this.
Anyway the soup was delicious. We toasted one of the loaves of bread I made this weekend and topped it with some Black Truffle Oil that I received from my Secret Santa! It was amazing.

Escarole and Bean Soup Recipe
1 head coarsely chopped escarole, well washed
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
5 cloves garlic chopped (I didn't add this)
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup undrained canned white cannellini beans
salt and pepper
Crushed red pepper

Fill a 4 quart pot halfway with salted water and bring to a boil. Add the escarole and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally until the escarole is cooked al dente. Drain and set aside.
In the same 4 quart pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add garlic, and cook until golden. Stir in the escarole, chicken broth and the cannellini beans. Bring to a boil, turn the heat down, and simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add salt and pepper to your liking, and crushed red pepper. Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil over each dish and serve with crusty bread.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Pollo alle Cipolle

Back in April I found this recipe on Italian Foodies. Chicken with onions. It was excellent. The sauce for this was so good. And I used chicken breast instead of the chicken legs. I made Quinoa instead of mashed potatoes. Also had some Italian bread to help finish off the sauce!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Minestrone Soup with Parmesan Dumplings

On Friday when I received my Foodbuzz email this recipe caught my eye. Minestrone Soup with Parmesan Dumplings. Today we reached the high temperature of 22 degrees so this was a perfect dinner.
Also made some bread... again the recipe from The Italian Dish, No Knead Artisan Bread.
Here are a couple of photos of the bread I made Friday, this loaf was made in a loaf pan instead of free form. It fits better in the toaster!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Steak Pizzaiola

I just did not know what to make tonight. So I picked up some Boneless Eye of Round Steaks and made a quick sauce of onion and peppers and crushed tomatoes. Seasoned the sauce with salt, pepper, oregano and crushed red pepper. Put that on top of the steaks and baked the steaks for 20 minutes at 400 degrees. Not bad, not bad at all.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Chicken Piccata, Zucchini, Quiona and Walnut Rosemary Bread

Walnut Rosemary Bread! Today I worked from home so I started to make the bread before Chris left for work.By mid afternoon it was in the oven. Oh the house smelled so good. I found the recipe in a Cooking Light magazine.
The Chicken Piccata is a Giada De Laurentiis recipe from the Food Network. The chicken was so tender and the sauce was perfect.
The Zucchini was a simple saute in olive oil and butter and seasoned with salt, pepper, crushed red pepper and thyme.
The Quiona recipe was from Eating Well. Rinse 1 cup quinoa in several changes of cold water. Bring quinoa and 2 cups water or broth to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, until tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed, 15-20 minutes. Fluff with a fork. Makes 3 cups.
I wanted to add something to the Quiona. I went to the Food52 Food Pickle. I typed in that I was making Quiona as a side dish and asked if anyone have any suggestions to spice it up. I got a suggestion to add toasted pine nuts. Well I happened to have pine nuts which I toasted and added to the Quiona along with some Parmesan Cheese.
Just a fantastic Friday night meal... oh but what are all those dishes in the sink...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Roasted Sausage and Peppers

I am an American of Italian descent who is not a huge garlic fan. Another thing I do not like is the smell of the house when you fry sausage and peppers. So my solution is to roast them. I cut the red and green peppers into strips, the onions into slices and cut the sausage links into small pieces. I mixed everything with olive oil, salt, pepper, oregano, parsley and basil. I lined a roasting pan with foil, I also hate scrubbing pans. I roasted the sausage and peppers at 425 degrees for 45 minutes. After it came out of the oven I added some sauce to it. Back in the oven until the sauce was warm. Some Italian bread to make sandwiches and we cleaned the plate.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Autumn Beef Stew

I said I would make this recipe again. Autumn Beef Stew, from Gavin Murphy's site is delicious. I did not have turnips but I did have sweep potatoes so I put those in. It is 20 degrees here so a stew right of the oven was perfect.

Sunday, January 16, 2011


Yes it is Sunday and surprise we had pizza. For the topping I made Sausage and Peppers for later in the week so I used some on half of the pie ;l................... Okay that last bit was typed by Lucy as she walked across the keyboard!
Anyway dinner was delicious!

 Perfect crust!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Broccoli Rabe Sandwich

Chris was out tonight so you know what that means! Broccoli Rabe! I was going to do something with rice then I was thinking couscous but finally I just went with the sandwich. I had some homemade bread and sauteed the rabe with olive oil and added crushed red pepper. Finished it with a little Parmesan cheese and I was in heaven.
I also saw a good "food" movie, Pressure Cooker. Very interesting documentary. I would give it 2 paws up!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Pasta with Zucchini, Grape Tomato and Onion

Long day at work... Easy meal to make, and quite good.

Favorite Online Recipes

This morning I woke up and realized if anything ever happened to my computer all of the recipes I have bookmarked would be gone. I know it seems trivial but I lead a simple life. So I am putting them here. Some are recipe collections and some are individual recipes. It is a version of the clipping recipes from magazines that I use to do, okay I still do....

Feel free to browse and I will make a notation if I have tried the recipe (that's more for my benefit).

This page helps you decide what to make for dinner-

Another Real Simple recipe collection - Winter Recipes-

A month of 400 calorie dinners -

Looking for a different sandwich -

Collection of weeknight dinners -

Cauliflower recipe -

Dinner in 15 minutes?

This reminded me of something my Aunt Nora use to make-

Summer party recipes -

The only collection of recipes you really need for the summer -

Stuck for pizza topping or sandwich combos? Here is a menu for some ideas -

Edamame Stew -

Tofu Satay -

It's the summer and you don't want to turn on the oven but you want cake -

Browned Polenta!

Too many apples?

Eggplant and Ricotta Sauce -

Beets -

Buckwheat Noodles, Pizzocheri -


Farro Salad

Potato and Cheese Fry!

Good blog to get lost in -

Looking for some Italian food blogs -

Beef Brisket -

Beef Chops with Oregano -

Drunken Cheesy Bread - This I have made!

Chicken with Potatoes-

BLT Fattoush - Lunch

Lunch -

Gnocchi di zucca -

Turkey and Pancetta Pot Pie, Giada-

Crispy Prosciutto and Scallion Frittatta -

My favorite dish from Zhangs, can't see why I would make this but... -

A video how to site -

Chard and White Bean Stew, which looks sooo good -

Warm Spinach Salad with Sweet Potatoes-;gallery_recipe_btn

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Parmesan Chicken


Tonight I revisited the recipe for Parmesan Chicken from Mark Bittman I made last year. This time I used Chicken Thighs. It was delicious.

 This morning I made Doughnut Muffins! Wow what an amazing recipe.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


Soppressata, fried onions and peppers! Why Soppressata? Quite a while ago I had saw a recipe that used salami in a calzone. I was at the store and saw the Soppressata and decided to try it. The dough was from the Jim Lahey's My Bread Book. Sauce was jarred, sorry. Chef Silvio's Sunday Sauce, which I now have the recipe for in Cooking With Chef Silvio!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Shepherd's Pie

It was a choice between Meatloaf and Shepherd's Pie. The deciding factor... the number of dishes that would have to be washed. Ground beef, onions, frozen vegetables and mashed potatoes. Perfect pre-blizzard meal.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Reuben Bread and Butternut Squash and Leek Soup

Dinner started with some Kielbasa that I did not use in Thursday night's dinner. I was unsure what I was going to do with it when I found the recipe for Reuben Bread.  I had made this bread last year so I just used the Kielbasa in place of the Corn Beef.

I did not have Thousand Island Dressing so I did the obvious thing, I Googled it! Found this easy recipe -

Easy Homemade Thousand Island Dressing
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup ketchup
2 tbsp. sweet pickle relish
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp milk

Also made a nice soup, Butternut Squash and Leek. Loved it!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Pork, Potatoes, and Vinegar Peppers

Guess where this recipe came from... Cooking with Chef Silvio. I know I am in a cookbook rut but this is such a good book! So Pork, Potatoes, and Vinegar Peppers or Maiale Pate e Pupacchie was fantastic. No leftovers. I think that sums up the meal.

I cut up a pork tenderloin into cubes. Cut up 1/2 lb of potatoes into wedges. Heated some olive oil and added the pork, the potatoes and some pickled peppers. Sauteed until the pork and the potatoes were cooked, about 35 minutes, stirring constantly. Seasoned with salt and pepper. Yum!

We had a nice wine with dinner. Lagone Aia Vecchia which was very nice and very cheap. Like $6.99 a bottle. The cherry finish was amazing.

I had found this recipe on The Italian Dish blog a while ago and finally tried it. Next time I need to wait to slice the bread. But other than that why wouldn't anyone make this recipe. A loaf of bread for 40 cents! Come on that is a good deal.

Is that a cat's tail I see in that photo?

Yes that is Archie being held by me. I am wearing my New Orleans Saints sweatshirt... sigh, maybe next year...

Friday, January 7, 2011

Pacche e Fasul, Homemade Macaroni and Beans

Tonight we were Cooking With Chef Silvio. Pacche e Fasul, Homemade Macaroni and Beans is what I would consider peasant food. I do not mean peasant food as a bad thing. I am fascinated by Italian food that perhaps my grandparents may have eaten. They were farmers, not well off by any means, and just maybe my great grandmother made this for dinner
To begin with I had never made a pasta like this before. Flour, salt and water. That's it. It was a little heavier than pasta made with egg. But it was good. It had a wonderful texture. And it was rolled out by hand. That's right no pasta machine here. I kept thinking that this was probably a normal thing for my grandmothers to do. I was tempted to pull out the pasta machine but I did not.

The sauce was heaven on a plate. Olive oil, onion, celery, tomatoes, basil and cannellini beans (of course I omitted the garlic). What amazes me about this book and even La Cucina is that the best recipes have the fewest ingredients.

Pasta Ingredients
4 cups sifted all purpose flour
1/2 tsp. salt

Sauce Ingredients
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
4 garlic clove, finely chopped
1/2 small onion finely chopped
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
24 oz can San Marzano tomatoes, undrained and crushed by hand
Leaves of 1 bunch fresh basil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
14 oz can undrained cannellini beans

For the Pasta
Chef Silvio suggests using a large wooden board or a marble slab for making the dough on... I used my Pampered Chef Pastry Mat, the marble slab will be installed when the kitchen is done over.
So here we go...
Place flour in the middle of the pastry mat and make a well in the center. Add the salt and gradually pour water into the well while mixing in the flour until all the flour is moistened and a rough dough has gathered into a ball. The dough should be quite firm but pliable. At some point you may ask how much water. Well I used around 1 1/2 cups, but I added it very slowly and I added it as it seemed necessary. Chef Silvio's recipe says you may need to adjust the flour or water.
Scape the work surface clean and sprinkle with enough flour to cover. Place the dough on the surface, sprinkle with flour, and knead with your fist for about 5 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic. Shape the dough into a ball and sprinkle the top and bottom with flour. Let rest for 1 hour. 
With a rolling pin, roll the dough from the center outwards in all directions so that it forms a round sheet. Keep rolling and sprinkle the bottom and top frequently with flour so it doesn't stick. The dough should be 1/8 to 1/16 in thickness. Let the pasta sheet rest for 2 hours.
Then cut into strips 3 inches wide, making sure the strips are well floured, top and bottom. Make 2 stacks of pasta strips and cut them across into 1/2 inch wide pieces. (
For some reason I decided to cut the pasta into triangles.) Separate the pieces with your fingers and sprinkle with more flour to keep them dry and apart. Gently spread them into an even layer on a tray lined with linen towel and let dry for at least for 1 hour.

Making the Sauce
This is an amazing sauce. In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, onion and celery and cook for approximately 5 minutes or until ingredients turn golden. Add the tomatoes, 12 basil leaves, torn up, and salt and pepper. Simmer, covered for about 5 minutes. Take off the cover, stir in the beans and cook for another 5 minutes, or until the tomatoes become soft. Turn off the heat and set aside.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the pasta. Stir gently until the water comes back to a boil and the pasta comes to the surface. Drain the pasta, saving some of the water. Return the pasta to the pot, mix with the sauce, and add enough cooking water to just about cover the pasta. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, give it a nice stir and adjust seasoning with salt, pepper and peperoncino to your liking. If you like it brothy, serve immediately; if you like it thick let it sit off heat for 10 to 15 minutes with the cover on.

This was the second recipe I have cooked out of Cooking With Chef Silvio. I am recommending it and have added it to my Favorite Cookbooks list. Can't wait to try another recipe. And I think Chris is pleased with his cookbook choice!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Chicken Noodle Soup

I made my sister's Chicken Stock recipe. I added Escarole, frozen mixed vegetables and pasta. If either of us was not feeling well before dinner this soup cured it. Such a wonderful meal.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Roasted Kielbasa, Bell Peppers and Onions

In today's newspaper there was an article about "super" foods. Onions and Bell Peppers were on the list!

The Keikbasa was Grote & Weigel. I cut everything up and tossed it with olive oil, salt, pepper, parsley, rosemary, thyme & sage. It went into the oven for about 25 minutes at 375 degrees. A little dijon mustard and some bread made this a perfect winter meal.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Spaghetti Pie with Pecorino Cheese, Prosciutto and Zucchini


For Christmas I received Cooking with Chef Silvio. We have eaten at his restaurant in Madison a few times and each time the food was wonderful. This recipe was amazing. We cleaned the plate! The only change I made was to add sauteed zucchini. I wish I had some leftovers for lunch...

3 large eggs, lightly beaten
2/3 cup pecorino romano cheese
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 tbsp. fresh chopped parsley
1 zucchini, sliced
1 tbsp. olive oil
Salt and fresh ground pepper
12 oz cooked spaghetti, cold
2 tbsp butter
5 oz. goat cheese, sliced 1/4 " thick
3 oz prosciutto, cut into strips

In a bowl, beat the eggs, grated cheese, cream, parsley, salt and pepper until well combined. Stir in the spaghetti, then set aside. Saute the zucchini in pan in olive oil. Place the butter in a deep pie tin and melt the butter in a 425 degree oven, and spread over the pan bottom. Pour half of the spaghetti mixture into the buttered pan and spread evenly, then top evenly with the sliced cheese and zucchini and prosciutto. Pour the rest of the spaghetti mixture over the top. bake at 425 degrees for 8 to 20 minutes,or until it is firm and golden. We served it hot with a jar  of Chef Silvio's Sunday Sauce.