Tuesday, July 30, 2013

shrimp in brandy crean sauce


2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
2 large garlic cloves, chopped
2 pounds uncooked jumbo shrimp, peeled, deveined
Fine sea salt
1/2 cup brandy
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 teaspoon hot sauce
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives

Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add shrimp; sprinkle lightly with sea salt. Sauté until half cooked, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat; add brandy to skillet. Ignite with long match. Return to heat and cook until flames burn out (flames will be high), about 1 minute. Using slotted spoon, transfer shrimp to bowl. Add whipping cream and hot sauce to skillet. Boil until sauce thickens, about 2 minutes. Return shrimp and any accumulated juices to skillet; add chives. Toss until shrimp are just opaque in center and sauce thickens enough to coat, about 3 minutes. Transfer shrimp and sauce to shallow bowl. Or plate individually .

Monday, July 29, 2013


45 Athens frozen mini Phyllo cupsFor the Shrimp Salad:1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
5 teaspoons fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons mango chutney
3/4 teaspoon Thai green curry paste*
12 ounces peeled cooked medium shrimp, coarsely chopped
Fresh cilantro leaves

*Thai green curry paste is available at Asian markets and in the Asian foods section of some supermarkets.
 Phyllo Cups:Crisp in the oven as per the package directionsMake The Shrimp Salad:Whisk mayonnaise, chopped fresh cilantro, lime juice, chutney, and curry paste in medium bowl to blend. Stir in shrimp. Season salad to taste with salt and pepper. (Make Ahead: Salad can be prepared up to 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.) Place  Phyllo cups on serving platter. Spoon 1 teaspoon shrimp salad into each cup. Garnish with cilantro leaves

Sunday, July 28, 2013

deviled eggs plus

Makes 48

You can make the little wonton cups as described below. But to make this a really snap recipe, use the Athens frozen mini Phyllo cups.

If making the Wonton Cups:12 wonton wrappers (from one 12-ounce package), each cut into 4 squares (You’ll need a miniature muffin tin to prepare the wonton cups.)
Vegetable oil
If Using the Phyllo Cups:
Athens frozen mini Phyllo cups
For the Shrimp Salad:1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
5 teaspoons fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons mango chutney
3/4 teaspoon Thai green curry paste*
12 ounces peeled cooked medium shrimp, coarsely chopped
Fresh cilantro leaves

*Thai green curry paste is available at Asian markets and in the Asian foods section of some supermarkets.

If Making the Wonton Cups:Preheat oven to 325F. Place wonton squares on work surface; brush lightly with oil. Press each into miniature muffin cup, oiled side down. Bake until wonton cups are golden brown, about 10 minutes. Cool completely in tins. (Make Ahead: Can be made 3 days ahead. Remove cups from tins and store airtight at room temperature.)
If Using Phyllo Cups:Crisp in the oven as per the package directions
Make The Shrimp Salad:Whisk mayonnaise, chopped fresh cilantro, lime juice, chutney, and curry paste in medium bowl to blend. Stir in shrimp. Season salad to taste with salt and pepper. (Make Ahead: Salad can be prepared up to 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.) Place wonton or Phyllo cups on serving platter. Spoon 1 teaspoon shrimp salad into each cup. Garnish with cilantro leaves.

4 ounces soft goat cheese
2 tablespoons heavy cream, approximately
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary, or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried, crushed
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh thyme, or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried
1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 tablespoon fresh chives, minced
Freshly ground black pepper
1 large head endive, or 2 small heads
Sweet paprika, optional

In a medium bowl, cream the goat cheese with the back of a kitchen spoon. Add the cream, rosemary, thyme, parsley, chives, and pepper and mix until smooth and creamy. Add more cream if the cheese is particularly thick. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Bring to room temperature before assembling.
Core the endive and separate into spears. Spoon the filling into 20 endive spears, filling each spear about halfway. Assemble on a plate and sprinkle with the paprika, if using. Cover and refrigerate.

2 pounds small Prince Edward Island mussels, bearded and scrubbed
1 onion, finely chopped
3 sprigs parsley
1 cup white wine
1 sprig thyme
1 bay leaf
Black pepper
1 teaspoon saffron threads, chopped and dissolved in 1/4 cup white wine
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

In a large sauté pan, combine the mussels, onion, parsley, wine, thyme, bay leaf, black pepper, to taste, saffron, and olive oil and bring to a boil over high heat. Continue cooking, shaking the pan occasionally, until the mussels have all opened. Remove from heat and take the mussels from the pan with tongs, setting them aside in a bowl. Reserve the cooking liquid. Once the mussels are cool enough to handle, remove one half of each shell and discard. Place the half-shelled mussels in the refrigerator to chill, and reserve the juices from the bowl. Strain this liquid, as well as the liquid from the sauté pan, and combine in the sauté pan. Reduce by 2/3 over high heat, then remove from heat, and set aside to cool. Once it is cooled, arrange the chilled mussels on a tray and drizzle over the chilled mussels and serve. (For easy handling, pierce each mussel with a fancy toothpick.)

Serves 12
Don't be intimidated--This is really easy, but just takes some time to cure the salmon
For the fish:
1 piece of 4 pounds salmon filet with the skin (cleaned, scaled, bones removed)
3 cup coarse salt
6 cup sugar
2 bulbs of fresh fennel (white part only), chopped
2 tablespoon dried Juniper berries, smashed a bit
5 tablespoon dried black pepper corns
3 tablespoon ground cumin
2 tablespoon ground anise seed*
1 cup fresh dill (finely chopped)
2 oranges cut in thick slices
4 lemons cut in thick slices

For Mustard Dill Sauce:
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup Brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill

*Ground anise seed can be found at the Great American Spice Company.

Make the Gravlax:Mix all ingredients, (except the salmon). It should be well mixed. On a tray, place a layer of the mixture (1 inch thick); place the salmon (skin side down) on it. Cover the top and the sides of the salmon with a heavy layer of the rest of the mixture. Wrap the whole tray tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for minimum 3 to 4 days before carving. This will depend on the thickness of the filet. (The Gravlax will exude juice, so if you can get a tray with a higher side it would be good or you will have juice in your refrigerator that you will have to clean.)
Carve the Gravlax:Once the Gravlax is cured, remove all the curing mixture residue before carving. Carving should be done by placing the fish, skin side down, on a carving board and slice it very thin on the diagonal, detaching each slice from the skin. (Make sure your slicing knife is very sharp. A knife with a long thin blade is ideal.)
Make the Sauce:Make the mustard dill sauce the day you are serving the Gravlax, by combining all ingredients together. If your Gravlax came out more or less sweet than you wanted, you can adjust for it by using more or less sugar/mustard in the dressing. If the sauce seems too heavy then adjust with a little oil or water. The Gravlax can be served either on bread with mustard sauce or with the sauce on the side.

Makes 24
(Make Ahead: The stuffed jalapenos can be refrigerated up to 1 day. Let them sit at room temperature for 20 minutes before baking.)
12 small to medium jalapeno chilies (preferably with stems attached)
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
4 thin slices Black Forest ham, chopped fine
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 scallions, chopped fine
1/2 teaspoon salt

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350F degrees. Cut each jalapeno lengthwise through the stem (you should end up with 2 complete halves) and remove ribs and seeds. Combine cream cheese cheddar, ham, lime juice, chili powder, scallions, and salt in a bowl. Fill each jalapeno half with cheese mixture. Place jalapenos on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until filling is hot, about 20 minutes. Cool slightly and serve warm.

Makes 6 Servings
1 cup unpitted Kalamata olives or other brine-cured black olives
1/2 cup dry red wine
1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds, coarsely crushed
1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons olive oil
Up to 3 days before, mix all ingredients and put in the refrigerator. When ready to use, preheat oven to 325°F. Bake uncovered in a small baking dish until olives are heated through, about 20 minutes. Cool slightly. Serve olives warm.

6 hard-cooked large eggs
1 1/2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 1/2 tablespoons plain yogurt
1 1/4 teaspoons curry powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon bottled Major Grey's chutney, large pieces minced
1 scallion, chopped fine
1/2 teaspoon fresh lime juice
Tabasco to taste

Garnish: thinly sliced scallion green
Cut a paper-thin slice off both ends of eggs and halve eggs crosswise. Force yolks through a sieve into a bowl (or mash with a fork) and stir in remaining ingredients and salt and pepper to taste. Transfer filling to a pastry bag fitted with a large ribbon or other decorative tip and pipe into whites, mounding it. The stuffed eggs may be made 6 hours ahead and chilled, covered. Just before serving, garnish eggs.

Makes about 3 dozen
1/2 pound dried figs, stems discarded
3/4 cup dry red wine
1 tablespoon port
1 1/4 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon honey
1/4 pound paper thin sliced prosciutto (best is Prosciutto de Parma)
1/4 pound foie gras mousse, at room temperature*

*Available at Dartagnan or high end grocery stores like Wegman's
In a small saucepan, combine the figs, wine, port, balsamic vinegar and honey and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to moderate and simmer until the liquid is absorbed and the figs are tender, 15 minutes. Let cool, then puree in a food processor. Transfer 1/2 cup of the fig compote to a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch round tip (or see parenthetical note below). Reserve the remaining compote to serve with cheese or cured meat. Cover a baking sheet with plastic wrap. Overlap the prosciutto slices on the plastic to form a 9-by-12-inch rectangle. Using an offset spatula, spread the foie gras mousse over the prosciutto in a very thin layer. Pipe the fig compote along one 9-inch edge of the rectangle (could just spoon a rounded row of it at the end as well). Beginning there, roll up the prosciutto tightly, using the plastic wrap to guide you. Wrap the prosciutto roll in plastic and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours. To assemble the roulades, slice the prosciutto roll on the diagonal 1/8 inch thick and set the slices on a serving platter. Garnish platter with some curly parsley. (The unsliced prosciutto roll can be refrigerated overnight.)

1 pakage(8 ounce) jumbo lump crabmeat
1 tablespoon stone ground mustard
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon fresh chives
1 tablespoon fresh Parsley
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 egg
2 1/2 ounce Boursin Cheese (about1/2 cup)
2 cups unseasoned bread crumbs
Nonstick cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all ingredients (except breadcrumbs) in small bowl (mixture will be runny). Form into 1-inch clusters. Roll in breadcrumbs, forming truffles. (Add a bit more breadcrumbs if you cannot get into a ball for rolling.) Spray baking sheet lightly with nonstick cooking spray. Place truffles on sheet; bake 15 min.

Makes 30
1/3 cup red currant jelly
2 (2.1 ounce) boxes frozen mini phyllo cups
1 (8-ounce) wheel firm Brie, rind trimmed, cheese cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/4 cup coarsely chopped smokehouse almonds

Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350F. Spoon 1/2 teaspoon jelly into each phyllo cup. Place 1 piece of Brie in each cup and sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon almonds. Place phyllo cups on parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until cheese is melted and jelly is bubbly, about 15 minutes. Cool slightly and serve warm. (The filled cups win keep up to 2 days in the refrigerator or 1 month in the freezer. If frozen, defrost for 20 minutes before baking.)

Makes 12
12 slices dark pumpernickel or rye cocktail bread
1/2 cup garlic-flavored Boursin cheese, at room temperature
1/4 pound very thinly sliced rare deli roast beef
1/2 cup jarred roasted red peppers, cut into 1/4-inch strips
3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill or tarragon

Spread each piece of bread with some Boursin cheese and top with 1 piece roast beef (sort of mounded). Top with 2 pepper strips and sprinkle with dill or tarragon. (The canapés can be refrigerated for up to 4 hours. Bring to room temperature before serving.) Serve.

Potato can be used to replace half of the yolks to cut fat and cholesterol. You can also use all the eggs and delete the potato for a richer canapé.
1 8- to 9-ounce russet potato, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
6 large eggs
1 tablespoon olive oil (preferably extra-virgin)
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons whole-grain Dijon mustard
4 tablespoons minced smoked salmon (about 1 ounce)
3 tablespoons finely chopped green onions
Cook potato in pot of boiling salted water until very tender, about 10 minutes. Drain. Cool potato. Meanwhile, place eggs in medium saucepan; cover with water. Bring to boil. Cover; remove from heat and let stand 15 minutes. Drain. Rinse eggs with cold water until cool. Peel off shells. Halve eggs lengthwise. Reserve 3 egg yolks for another use. Combine remaining 3 yolks, potato, oil, lemon juice and mustard in medium bowl. Mash with fork until well blended. Stir in 2 tablespoons salmon and 1 1/2 tablespoons green onions. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Divide potato-and-yolk mixture among hard-boiled egg white halves, mounding slightly. MAKE AHEAD: Eggs can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Garnish eggs with 2 tablespoons salmon and 1 1/2 tablespoons green onions.

Makes 20 Servings
42 thin slices pancetta (about 1 1/4 pounds) or 21 slices bacon, halved crosswise
7 persimmons, peeled, each persimmon cut into 6 wedges (persimmons should be soft)
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Balsamic vinegar, preferably aged at least 10 years
Preheat the oven to 450F. Lay the pancetta on 2 large rimmed baking sheets. Bake for 3 minutes, or until softened. Transfer the pancetta to a large plate. Wipe off the baking sheets. Season the persimmons with salt and pepper and wrap each wedge with a slice of pancetta. Secure with toothpicks. Arrange the persimmons on the baking sheets. Bake 1 sheet at a time in the center of the oven for 4 minutes, or until the pancetta is crisp. Transfer to a platter, drizzle with the vinegar and serve.

1 teaspoon vegetable oil
12 large sea scallops, cut horizontally into 2 rounds
1/4 cup crème fraîche or sour cream
1/2 ounce black caviar (preferably sturgeon)
4 fresh chives, cut into 1-inch lengths
Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Season scallops with salt and pepper. Cook scallops until golden on bottom, about 2 minutes. Turn over; sauté until just cooked through, about 1 minute. Drain on paper towels. Cool to room temperature. Top each scallop with 1/2 teaspoon crème fraîche or sour cream. Top with caviar. Garnish with chives and serve.

Makes 20-30
1/2 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves
1/4 cup shallots (about 2 large), peeled, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, peeled, chopped
1 tablespoon lemon zest, minced (1 lemon)
1 tablespoon lime zest, minced (1 lime)
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 Serrano peppers, seeded, chopped (add more if you like it extremely spicy)
Salt to taste
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 pound large (21-30 count) shrimp, peeled and deveined
Put the fist 12 ingredients into the food processor and blend until all ground together to make a paste. Drizzle in the oil with the processor running to form an emulsion. Marinate the shrimp into the paste for about 1-2 hours. You can then either thread the shrimp on skewers and grill or just grill the shrimp and have tooth picks for easy eating. Serve warm with the remaining curry paste for dipping.

Makes 18
1 cup (4 oz.) shredded Manchego cheese
1 cup chopped pitted Kalamata olives
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon capers, drained
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 medium garlic cloves, minced
18 slices (1/4 inch) baguette (not a fat baguette--one that could be bite size in slices)
Heat broiler. In medium bowl, combine all ingredients except baguette slices; mix well. Spread mixture on baguette slices and place on baking sheet. Broil 4 to 6 inches from heat about 1 minute or until cheese is melted and edges of bread are lightly browned. Watch closely. Serve immediately.

Makes 6 to8 Servings
This recipe can be either grilled or broiled. If you use toothpicks, make sure you soak them in water beforehand
2 pounds medium asparagus
1/2 pound very thinly sliced pancetta
Finely grated zest and juice of 1 orange
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 teaspoons chopped thyme
Tightly wrap each asparagus spear in a slice of pancetta and refrigerate until chilled, about 20 minutes. Light a grill, preheat a grill pan, or turn on the broiler. In a small bowl, stir the orange zest and juice with the mustard and olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Grill the asparagus over moderate heat, turning often, until they are just tender and the pancetta is crisp, about 5 minutes total. Transfer the asparagus to a platter and drizzle with the dressing. Sprinkle with the thyme and serve.

Makes 12
Goat cheese makes these eggs slightly tangy and creamy. Garnish them with mixed fresh herbs
6 hard-boiled eggs split & separated
2 ounces soft goat cheese, crumbled (could also use Feta)
6 Tablespoons mayonnaise
2 teaspoons minced shallots (or grated onion)
teaspoons minced fresh herbs: tarragon, chervil, dill, basil chives, (could also combine any of the basic herbs with chives)
Salt and pepper taste (Goat cheeses can be pretty salty, so taste first)
Place the egg yolk in a medium bowl and mash with a pastry blender or fork, add cheese, and mash again. Stir in mayonnaise and then remaining ingredients. Spoon or pipe mixture into the whites. Flavor will improve if you refrigerate them for a few hours before eating. Garnish plate with the herbs used in the eggs. You can also make the following variations:
Smoked Salmon Deviled Eggs: Eliminate salt from basic recipe. Add 1 tablespoon finely chopped cold-smoked salmon.
Cilantro-Lime Deviled Eggs: Eliminate herbs from basic recipe. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped cilantro and 1/4 teaspoon grated lime peel.
Deviled Eggs with Prosciutto and Grainy Mustard: Add 2 tablespoons minced prosciutto and 1/8 teaspoon grainy mustard to basic recipe.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


6 Servings

For bread pudding:
2 cups milk (do not use low-fat or nonfat)
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
3 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
7 cups 1-inch cubes brioche or egg bread (about 6 ounces)
1 l0-ounce package frozen unsweetened blueberries
For Maple-Whiskey Sauce:
Makes 1 1/2 cups
1 cup half and half
3 egg yolks
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 tablespoons whiskey

Make pudding:Preheat oven to 325F. Butter 8-inch square glass baking dish. Whisk milk, sugar, eggs, yolks and vanilla in bowl. Place half of bread on bottom of prepared dish. Top with half of blueberries. Pour half of custard over. Top with remaining bread and blueberries. Pour remaining custard over. Let stand 15 minutes, occasionally pressing on bread. Bake until pudding puffs and top begins to brown, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Serve warm with Maple-Whiskey Sauce.
Make Maple-Whiskey Sauce:
Bring 1 cup half and half to simmer in heavy medium saucepan. Whisk 3 egg yolks, 2 tablespoons sugar and 1 teaspoon cornstarch in medium bowl. Gradually whisk in hot half and half. Return mixture to same saucepan and stir over medium-low heat until custard thickens and leaves path on back of spoon when finger is drawn across, about 3 minutes (do not boil). Strain into bowl. Mix in maple syrup and whiskey. Serve sauce warm.


Sunday, July 21, 2013


Makes four servings
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons water
3 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
3 pints fresh blueberries, cleaned
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon vodka

Combine the sugar, water and ginger in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Let stand until cool.. Place the blueberries, ginger syrup, lemon juice and vodka in a blender and blend until smooth. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Refrigerate until cold. Freeze according to the directions on your ice-cream machine.


Tuesday, July 2, 2013

jalapeno bites for the 4th of july

chocolate jalapeno bites.
8 ounces dark chocolate melted
1 jalapeno pepper seeded minced
1/4 cup toasted chopped pecans
3 drops raspberry flavoring
combine all ingredients and pour onto a waxed paper lined baking sheet.
sprinkle lightly with seasalt and chill 20 minutes before serving.
happy 4 th