Eating is a necessity. However, we choose what to eat. The choices we make reveal a great deal about us. The food you eat can tell quite a bit about your heritage, your family, your fears, your sense of adventure, your attitude toward yourself and others, and a myriad of other personal tidbits to anyone paying attention. Everything about eating is a glimpse into your soul.

I hope to reveal a little bit about myself to you through my food. I enjoy cooking. I enjoy eating. I find pleasure in bringing pleasure to others. I hope that by sharing my recipes I bring you a little bit of joy.

Cook my food. Feed it to the people you love.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Sweet Chili Noodles

By reading this blog, you can tell that I like spicy food.  But I don’t just want heat, I want flavor and complexity.  This simple dish gives you all three.

Servings: 4-6
Time:  Prep: 5 minutes;   Cooking:  13 minutes
Hardware:  A measuring spoon and cups, cutting board and knife, a sauce pot and a whisk, a large pot, a colander, a serving bowl

  • 8 oz fettuccine
  • 1 cup sweet Thai chili sauce
  • ⅛ cup miran
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 green onions
  1. Cook the pasta according to package directions.
  2. Roughly chop the green onions. Set aside.
  3. Whisk the rest of the ingredients together in the sauce pot over medium heat.  The sauce should be just warm.
  4. Drain the noodles and toss with ½ the warm sauce and the onions.  Serve warm.
Offer the rest of the warm sauce to your guests.

Katsu Mustard Chicken

Technically, this isn’t really katsu chicken.  The binding on katsu chicken is egg not mustard.  However, it is often served with mustard, so I am just skipping a step.  This tastes great and is enough like katsu chicken for rock-n-roll.

Servings: 4-6
Time:  Prep: 20 minutes   Cooking:  10-15 minutes
Hardware:  A cutting board and knife, measuring spoons and cups, 3 shallow bowls, a fork, a whisk, a paper towel covered plate, a deep skillet, and tongs

  • 1 1b boneless skinless chicken breast-sliced very thin
  • ½ cup Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons powdered ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 cups panko bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • oil for frying
Katsu Mustard Chicken

  1. Rinse the chicken in clean water and pat dry.  Cut into wide strips.
  2. In one bowl, whisk the Dijon mustard, soy sauce, garlic powder, ginger, and nutmeg together until completely blended.
  3. Put the flour in the second bowl.
  4. In the last bowl, toss together the panko and the sesame seeds.
  5. Heat the oil on medium high.
  6. Dip the chicken into the flour and shake to remove the excess.  Dip the floured chicken into the mustard and then press it into the panko to  ensure it is covered.  Make sure to press down so that the panko sticks.
  7. Fry the chicken for 4-5 minutes per side, or until golden brown.  Don’t crowd the chicken.  You may need to cook it in batches.
  8. Remove the chicken to the plate.  You can keep it warm in the oven on the lowest setting, while finishing up.

Sesame Slaw

More broccoli slaw!  I make slaw often because it is so effortless and everyone loves slaw.  I also like mixing it up a little (puny.) The little kick of the ginger in this version is balanced nicely with the earthy taste of the sesame oil. 

Servings: 4
Time:    Prep: 10 minute Chill: 2 hours
Hardware:  Measuring spoons and cups, a cutting board and knives, a mixing bowl, a whisk, a large storage container

Sesame Slaw


  • ½ cup olive oil based mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • 1-12 ounce package of broccoli slaw
  • 3 green onions
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • dressing
  1. Whisk together all of the ingredients for the slaw.
  2. Wash the onions and slice them as thinly as you can.
  3. Toss the slaw, onions, and ginger.  Then toss the slaw with the dressing until everything is thoroughly coated.  Chill for at least two hours before serving.
Serve with Katsu Mustard Chicken and Sweet Chili Noodles

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Wlited Spinach with Toasted Pine Nuts

I cannot really call this an original recipe.  I have eaten this at many restaurants and seen it on many bags of spinach.  However, I tweaked it a little.  Spinach can be bitter, but a pinch of nutmeg cures that.  This must taste good-Jeff got seconds.

When shopping for pine nuts, try to find Badia brand, which might be in the ‘ethnic’ aisle of the grocers.  Badia products are usually much cheaper, but of the same quality.

Servings: 2-4
Hardware:  Measuring spoons, a skillet with a lid, and a wooden spoon
Time:  Prep: 2 minutes, Cook: 5 minutes

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 6 ounce bag of baby spinach
  • A pinch of nutmeg
  • S&P to taste
  1. Heat the oil on medium.
  2. Add the pine nuts and cook for one minute.  Stir constantly, as the pine nuts burn easily.
  3. Add the spinach and cover it with the lid.  Stir after a minute.
  4. Replace the lid and allow the spinach to wilt completely, this might take another minute or two.  Stir in the nutmeg, salt, and pepper.
Serve right away.

Wilted Spinach with Toasted Pine Nuts

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Sloppy Giuseppes

I think I might keep riffing on the old standby Sloppy Joes.  I have made Sloppy Josés, a Tex-Mex version.  Now these Sloppy Giuseppes, while not Italian by any stretch of the imagination, were inspired by Italian-American ingredients.  And my grandfather, who, while not sloppy, was a Guiseppe.

Servings: 12 sliders
Time: Prep: 10 minutes Cooking: 20 minutes
Hardware: A cutting board and knives, measuring spoons and cups, a large heavy bottomed skillet, a can opener, a wooden spoon, and a baking sheet
  • 1 teaspoon of olive oil
  • 1 pound ground beef 
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1-15 oz can of tomato sauce
  • ½  cup sun-dried tomato pesto (found in the pasta aisle)
  • 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
  • 1 pinch sugar
  • 1 dozen slider buns (mini-hamburger buns, potato rolls, etc.)
  • 6- 1 ounce slices of smoked provolone
  • 3 tablespoons of butter
  • baby spinach and tomatoes for garnish
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°.
  2. Heat the olive oil in the skillet on medium high.
  3. Chop the garlic.
  4. Cook and crumble the meat and garlic until the meat is brown and cooked through (7-10 minutes). Drain most of the fat from the pan.
  5. Return the meat to the medium high pan. Add the sauce, pesto, seasonings, and sugar and stir until everything is completely incorporated.
  6. Allow the Giuseppis to come to a boil, stirring often.  Lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.  Stir enough to keep the Guiseppis from sticking.  Remove from the heat.
  7. Cut the buns open and spread with butter. Divide the mixture evenly between sandwiches.  Top each sandwich with ½ slice of cheese.
  8. Bake the sandwiches, open face, for 5-7 minutes or until the cheese completely melts.
  9. Garnish each slider with slices of tomato and baby spinach leaves.
 Serve with Parmesan Zucchini Fries

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Rosemary Sweet Potato Fries

Sweet.  Potato. Fry.  You need me to say more?

Servings:  4
Time: Prep: 10 minutes-- Cooking: 25-30 minutes
Hardware: A cutting board and large knife, a veggie peeler, measuring spoons, a large mixing bowl, a baking sheet, non-stick foil

  • 2 large sweet potatoes
  • 3 tablespoons light olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • Fresh black pepper
  • Cooking spray
  • Lemon Dill Mayo
  1. Preheat the oven to 425°. Cover the baking sheet in foil, non-stick side up. Spray the foil in cooing spray.
  2. Wash and peel the potatoes.
  3. If the ends of the potatoes are pointy, cut the point off and discard.  The points will burn.
  4. Cut the potatoes into ¼ inch thick slices.  Make sure that they are the same thickness.
  5. Put the fries in the large mixing bowl.  Toss with salt and rosemary.  Grind 3 or 4 grinds of black pepper into the bowl and then toss again.  Pour the oil over the potatoes and toss to completely cover them.
  6. Place each fry on the baking sheet, making sure they are not touching. Drizzle whatever is left in the bottom of the bowl over the potatoes.
  7. Bake on the bottom rack of the oven until they are golden brown. (25-30 minutes)
  8. Serve right away with Lemon Dill Mayo.

Parmesan Zucchini Fries

Crunchy, crispy, and delicious baked zucchini fries are healthier than traditional fries and yummy enough to eat on their own.

Servings: 2 appetizers or 4 side dishes
Time:  Prep: 10 minutes--- Cooking:  12-15 minutes
Hardware:  A cutting board and knife, measuring spoons and cups, 3 large shallow bowls, a fork, a baking sheet, non-stick foil

  • 1 ½ pounds zucchini
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup Italian style bread crumbs
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • pinch of salt
  • cooking spray
  • Fresh black pepper and Lemon Dill Mayo
  1. Preheat the oven to 425°.  Cover the baking sheet in foil, non-stick side up. Spray the foil in cooking spray.
  2. Wash and dry the squash.
  3. In the first bowl, beat the eggs and stir in the milk.
  4. In another bowl mix the flour and cornstarch
  5. In the last bowl mix the crumbs, cheese, seasoning, and salt.
  6. Cut the squash in half length wise. Cut each half in half length wise again and again.  You will have 8 long fries. Now cut all the fries in half width wise.  Now you should have 16 fries.
  7. Cover each fry in flour.  Shake as much flour off as possible then dip in the egg and then in the cheese mixture.
  8. Place each fry on the baking sheet, making sure they are not touching.
  9. Bake on the bottom rack of the oven until they are golden brown (12-15 minutes)
  10. Top the fries with a few grinds of fresh black pepper.  Serve right away with Lemon Dill Mayo.