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May 22, 2018
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The Epicurian Firehouse Recipe Collection
Posted On: Jun 09, 2010


-- a recipes collection --
© Copyright Joe and Debra Seals, 2009

            I put together this collection of recipes for Ken “Touchdown” Dehler, a fireman – and the chef -- at the Downtown Station in Los Angeles.
            Before I was even halfway into doing it, I realized it’s probably something of value to many who do the cooking at fire stations everywhere.
            What I’ve done, with Ken’s input, is put together big pot recipes that aren’t too difficult to make, that aren’t too expensive to make (mostly), that are hearty and, most importantly, that are beyond typical firehouse food.
            Instead of collecting “firehouse recipes”, for which there are a gazillion available on-line and in some fun cookbooks, I put together recipes that I’ve used in many of my cooking classes. Most of my classes are “epicurean”. Not over-the-top super gourmet cuisine but certainly something more than what I’ve found at the fire stations here. 
            I then tweaked most of my recipes for this collection. I simplified them in some cases, mostly because of the cost or availability of certain ingredients.
            With 95% of the recipes, the biggest change was that I changed the “Serves” number. My assumption is that most of you are not a station family of but 4 (as most recipes, including my originals, serve).  Sixteen was closer to what most of your stations employ and a good multiple of 4.
            The idea here is to give you a wider palette, a more fun palette.
            Your comments – of any kind – are welcome.
            Not everything in this cookbook can be abandoned in times of duty.
            And although I’m sure the reality is that a call can come in anytime, I’ve offered up some recipes that shouldn’t be left standing. You need to indulge yourselves every now and then and I suppose even take a bit of a chance with something really good.
            But if you’re not the risky type cook, I’ve marked all the recipes that I think will be just fine if you turn off the heat and leave alone.
            This little pot symbol (       ) indicates those “safe” recipes. That is to say, they can stand a little sitting around – off the heat and maybe back in the refrigerator.
            Those not so marked are up to you. I didn’t mark them because, usually, they contain eggs or dairy products. But you’ll let me know what you think since you have plenty more experience than me when it comes to leaving food unattended for a length of time.

            I’m aware of the fact that city agencies have pretty stringent budgets and especially nowadays, those budgets aren’t as flush as we’d like them to be.
            So, for those of you who need a bit more help with eating well without a gourmet’s financial plan, here’s some tips:
            1. Buy fresh as much as you can. Packaged foods are costly.
            2. Buy at farmer’s markets.
            3. Buy at ethnic food markets.
            4. Buy at the discount stores (e.g., Sam’s Club, CostCo, Smart & Final).
            5. Make a list of what basics are regularly cheapest where.
            6. Plan for at least 3 days of meals and consolidate items.
            7. If you memorize this recipe collection, find the least expensive protein on the day                   you shop and build your meal(s) around that.
            8. Don’t be afraid of “sale” items.
            9. Sample the generics.
            10. Go more often with the more-protein-for-the-buck stuff: chicken, turkey, seafood               and eggs.
            11. Go vegetarian once a week.
            12. Start a vegetable, fruit and herb garden (if y’all need plans and guidelines, e-mail
                        me and I’ll get you started).

hefty salads
hearty soups
husky vegetable sides
(including polenta, risotto and rice)
mixed casseroles
pork and lamb


To cook the tomatillos, you can either roast them in the oven or boil them. Roasting will deliver more flavor; boiling may be faster and use less energy.
Makes 3 cups
1 ½      lb                                 tomatillos
½         cup                               chopped white onion
½         cup                               cilantro leaves
1          Tbs                              fresh lime juice
¼         tsp                                sugar
2          medium                        Jalapeño peppers OR 2 Serrano peppers,
                                                stemmed, seeded and chopped
Salt to taste
Remove papery husks from tomatillos and rinse well.
Roasting method: Cut each tomatillo in half and place cut side down on a foil-lined baking sheet. Place under a broiler for about 5-7 minutes to lightly blacken the skin.
Boiling method: Place tomatillos in a saucepan, cover with water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove tomatillos with a slotted spoon.
Place roasted or boiled tomatillos, lime juice, onions, cilantro, chili peppers and sugar in a food processor (or blender) and pulse until all ingredients are finely chopped and mixed.
Season to taste with salt.
Cool in refrigerator.

Pico De Gallo, Salsa Cruda
Serves 16
1-½     cup                               chopped white onion
3          medium                        jalapeno or Serrano peppers, seeded or not
12        medium                        fresh tomatoes, seeded and diced
1-½     cup                               minced cilantro
1-½                                         lime, juice of (or 1 Tbs of rice wine vinegar)
Mix all ingredients together in large glass bowl.
Let stand, covered, in refrigerator for 2 hours to meld flavors.
Serve with all of your favorite dishes as a delicious vegetable side dish or garnish.

Makes 3 quarts or 6 pints
8          cups                             tomatoes, peeled, chopped and drained
2 ½      cups                             white or yellow onions, chopped
1 ½      cups                             green peppers, finely chopped
1          cup                               jalapeno or Serrano pepper or combination, chopped
6          cloves                           garlic, minced
2          tsp                                cumin
2          tsp                                pepper
1/8       cup                               canning salt
¼ to 1/3           cup                   sugar (or none)
1/3       cup                               white vinegar
         15-ounce can               tomato sauce
1          12-ounce can               tomato paste
Mix all together and bring to a slow boil for 10 minute.
Seal in jars and cook in hot water bath for 10 minute.
This is a medium-heat (“picante”) chunky salsa. If you want it hotter, use only Serrano peppers and maybe use more of them). If you want a smoother, salsa cut your veggies into smaller pieces.

Serves 16 as an appetizer, 8 as a side
2-½     cups                             black-eyed peas (fresh cooked or canned)
1          Tbs                              olive oil
3          small                             green chilies, chopped
Dash of cayenne pepper or your favorite hot sauce
3          Tbs                              minced onion
2          Tbs                              minced celery
2          Tbs                              apple cider vinegar
½         tsp                                salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
3          medium                        Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
2          Tbs                              minced fresh cilantro

Drain peas, rinse with cold water and drain again.
Combine olive oil, chilies, cayenne, onion, celery, vinegar, salt and
pepper, and mix well. Pour over peas and stir gently.
Refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
At serving time, add chopped tomatoes and cilantro and mix carefully.

Serves 16 as an appetizer
2          lb                                             fresh shrimp, cooked & peeled
(or buy already-cooked shrimp, size: 20-25)
¼         small                                         onion, shredded
½         small                                         green bell pepper, shredded
½         small                                         red bell pepper, shredded
2          cloves                                       garlic, minced
3          Tbs                                          fresh parsley, minced
1          cup                                           Italian salad dressing, Zesty
½         tsp                                           salt
½         tsp                                           black pepper
4         Tbs                                         paprika
2          small jars                                 artichoke hearts, 1 drained
2          small jars                                 button mushrooms, drained
24        large                                         black olives, pitted
            Place onion, peppers, garlic, and parsley in a food processor with sharp blade and pulse until shredded. Do not turn this into a slurry.
            Place shrimp, artichoke hearts, mushrooms, and olives in a deep bowl. Mix remaining ingredients, including above processed mixture, thoroughly and pour over shrimp mixture.
Cover and marinate in refrigerator for at least 24 hours before serving, stirring occasionally.

Shrimp Scampi, Stove-top
Serves 16
2          lb                                 medium-large shrimp,
                                    shelled and de-veined
6          large cloves                  garlic, sliced thinly
6          Tbs                              olive oil  
3          Tbs                              butter
                                                salt and freshly ground black pepper
1                                              lemon, juice from…
½         cup                               dry white wine
8          large sprigs                   parsley, chopped

Split the olive oil into three 12-inch skillets over medium heat.  (Or cook in three batches.)
Divide the shrimp and garlic and cook, stirring or tossing frequently, for 3 to 4 minutes. No more.
Season them with salt and pepper to taste.
Add the lemon juice and wine to the skillets, divided evenly. Raise the heat to high and cook for 2 minutes, stirring to mix well.
Add the parsley and the butter to the skillets. Stir just until the butter is melted and incorporated, giving the sauce a creamy texture.
            For a spicier version, add a teaspoon of Tabasco and a pinch of pepper flakes to the skillets with the butter. Or more!
            This can be turned into a lunch or dinner by serving it with pasta or rice and a vegetable.

Makes two 12-inch pizzas; each serves 2 to 4
Ingredients (for dough)
1          package (2 ¼ tsp)                    active dry yeast
1 1/3    cups                                         warm (105-115°F) water
3 ½ -3 ¾ cups                                     all purpose flour
2          Tbs                                          olive oil
A healthy pinch of salt

Begin by dissolving the yeast in the water, in a large mixing bowl; let it stand for 5 minutes.
Add the remaining ingredients and mix, either by hand or with a mixer set to low speed, until the ingredients are blended.
Hand-knead the dough or mix it with a dough hook setting the speed to low for about 10 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic.
Coat the insides of another bowl with olive oil and turn the dough in it to coat it too, then cover with plastic wrap and set it in a warm place to rise for an hour, or until it doubles in volume.

            For the baking, if you have a wood-fired pizza oven, fire it up. If you are instead using your kitchen oven, preheat it to 475°F -- if you are using a baking stone it should heat for at least 45 minutes. Otherwise grease and dust two flat baking sheets with corn meal.
Divide the dough in half, shape each half into a ball and let them sit for 15 minutes. Then shape them into disks, stretching them out from the center on a floured surface. Do not roll them, because rolling toughens the dough.

            Ladle and spread a half cup or so of tomato sauce or chopped canned tomatoes over the disks, leaving an inch of sauce-free rim, add the toppings (see PIZZA TOPPINGS), and bake.


            If you're using a baking stone and have a baker's peel (a thin metal disk with a handle), lightly flour it, slide the pizza onto it, and transfer it to the stone with a deft yank -- the flour will keep the dough from sticking. If you don't have a peel, use a flat cookie sheet instead, lightly flouring it, to transfer the pizza from the work surface to the stone.

If you're using a metal baking pan you should bake the pizza towards the bottom of the oven.
The pizza will be done when the crust is browned and the toppings are cooked; this takes 3 minutes in a wood-fired oven and about 15 at home. If you discover that the mozzarella begins to brown before the other ingredients are cooked to your satisfaction, the next time add it after the pizza (with the other toppings) has baked for about 5 minutes.


Covers 1 or 2 pizzas
2          Tbs                  good olive oil
1          Tbs                  butter
½         cup                   onion, chopped
¼         cup                   celery, chopped
1          clove                garlic, minced
8          oz                     tomato sauce
6          oz                     tomato paste
2          Tbs                  fresh-grated parmesan cheese
1          tsp                    dried basil
1- ½    tsp                    dried oregano
½         tsp                    salt
½         tsp                    sugar
¼         tsp                    black pepper
1          small                 bay leaf
1          tsp                    fennel seed
In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt butter with the oil. Add the onion and celery and sauté until soft and transparent.
Add the garlic, tomato sauce and tomato paste and stir until smooth.
Add remaining ingredients and bring to slow simmer.
Simmer for 60 minutes.
Remove the bay leaf.

Pizza Margherita
To a layer of tomato sauce, add about a quarter pound of shredded mozzarella, drizzle with a few drops olive oil, and top with 3-4 fresh large basil leaves.

Pizza al Prosciutto
Spread tomato sauce, sprinkle with ¼ pound shredded mozzarella, 2-3 ounces finely sliced prosciutto ham, drizzle with a few drops olive oil and bake.

Pizza Prosciutto e Funghi

Top with sauce and add about a cup of finely sliced mushrooms, 2-3 ounces finely sliced ham, and ¼ pound shredded mozzarella.

La Napoletana
Sauce plus ¼ pound shredded mozzarella, 3-4 anchovy filets or more to taste, 1 tablespoon or so rinsed salted or pickled capers, a dusting of oregano.

Pizza Quattro Stagioni
Sauce and 3-4 canned artichoke hearts, quartered, 5-6 black olives packed in brine (you'll want the sweet variety), ½ cup finely sliced mushrooms, 2 ounces finely sliced ham, shredded, and ¼ pound shredded mozzarella. Arrange the four toppings each in its quarter of the pizza; drizzle with a few drops olive oil and bake.


Pizza Capricciosa
Sauce plus ¼ pound shredded mozzarella, 1 finely sliced hot dog (yep), 1 link sweet Italian sausage (about 2 inches long), skinned and shredded, 8 thin slices pepperoni, 2 ounces thinly sliced ham, shredded, 2 canned artichoke hearts, quartered.

Pizza ai Quattro Formaggi
Sauce topped with ¼ pound shredded mozzarella, 1/3 cup (each) shredded pecorino, gorgonzola, groviera (Swiss Cheese), and fontina or asiago, one black olive.

Pizza alla Bismark

            Sauce and 2-3 ounces thinly sliced ham, shredded, and an egg. Spread the tomato sauce over the pizza, sprinkle the remaining ingredients over the sauce, crack the egg over the middle of the pizza, drizzle with a few drops olive oil and bake.

Pizza Vegetariana

Begin with the standard ½ cup tomato sauce or chopped canned tomatoes and
¼ pound shredded mozzarella, and go from there, adding the cooked vegetables you prefer (stewed peppers, stewed eggplant, artichoke hearts, spinach, and what have you). Drizzle with a few drops olive oil and bake.

Serves 16
6          large                             ripe avocados, cut into ½-inch cubes
1          medium                        onion, finely diced
1 or 2  small                             Serrano chili, seeds removed and finely diced
2          cloves                           garlic, crushed with 1/8 teaspoon coarse or sea salt
¼         tsp                                red chili powder
2          tsp                                freshly-squeezed lemon juice
2          small                             firm but ripe tomato, diced
1          Tbs                              cilantro, finely chopped
Place the avocado cubes into a medium sized bowl. 

            Add the onion, jalapeño chile peppers, garlic, salt and chili powder. Mix with a fork, mashing some but not all of the cubes of avocado.
Add the lemon juice, tomato and cilantro and stir well. The lemon will help delay some of the oxidation. 
            To store, place plastic wrap over the container tightly so that the wrap actually touches the guacamole. Place in refrigerator.


Makes about 24 fritters

3          cups                             corn kernels (thawed, if frozen)
¾         lb                                 shrimp, coarsely chopped
2          tsp                                garlic, minced
¾         cup                               shallots, finely chopped
1-½      tsp                                ginger root, minced
1-½      tsp                                ground coriander
½         tsp                                ground cumin
3          Tbs                              cilantro leaves, chopped
9 to 12 Tbs                              flour (regular or rice flour or mixed)
1-½      tsp                                salt
3          whole                           eggs, beaten
¾         cup                               peanut and/or vegetable oil
In a large bowl, combine corn, shrimp, garlic, shallots, ginger root, ground
coriander, cumin, cilantro leaves, flour, salt and eggs.
Heat a thin layer of oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
Pour ¼ cup of corn mixture into pan. 
Add as many as will fit into the pan with at least ½-inch of space between the
Fry until golden brown and crisp; turn. Cook about 1 minute on each side.
Remove and drain on paper towels.
Keep warm while frying remaining fritters.
Serve hot or at room temperature with sambal ulek (Indonesian chili sauce; available in the ethnic food aisle of most stores) for dipping and with cucumber batons.

Makes 16 fritters
1          pound                           warm mashed potatoes
4          Tbs                              butter, cut into bits
2          Tbs                              butter, for sautéing
1          cup                               Muenster Cheese, grated
1          large                             egg yolk
¼         cup                               parsley, chopped
1 ½      tsp                                salt
¼         tsp                                white pepper
1          pound                           raw shrimp, peeled and de-veined
1          cup                               onions, diced
½         cup                               flour
1          large                             egg, lightly beaten
1          cup                               fine bread crumbs
To the warm mashed potatoes, add the 4 tablespoons of butter bits, cheese, egg yolk, parsley, salt and pepper. Mix the ingredients together until smooth. Cover and set aside.
Chop the raw shrimp into coarse bits. In a heavy skillet, melt the 2 tablespoons of remaining butter. Sauté the onion until it is translucent (about 2-3 minutes). Add the shrimp and sauté until the shrimp just turns pink (about 2 minutes). Do not overcook.
Add the shrimp and onions to the potato mix and stir together.
To form the fritters, lightly flour your hands. Scoop out 3 tablespoons of the shrimp and potato mix, and shape into a cylinder (bomba) about 1-½ inch long by ¾ inch round.
Gently roll the bomba in flour and shake off the excess flour.
Dip a pastry brush into the beaten egg. Gently brush the egg onto the bomba and then roll the cylinder in the bread crumbs.

Shrimp and Potatoes Fritters
Place the coated bomba on wax paper. When you are finished shaping all the bombas, place them in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes before frying.
Deep fry the bombas at 375°F for about 2 minutes and then turn them over and fry another 2 minutes. They should be golden brown on both sides. Only fry 4 or 5 at a time.
Serve the bombas at once with drinks, as appetizers or as a snack.

Makes 6 dozen appetizers
2          lbs                                ground beef
2          medium                        onions, chopped finely
2          cups                             shredded cheese
½         tsp                                leaf oregano
½         tsp                                cumin
Dash                                        garlic salt
1          medium                        green chili, roasted, minced
1          package                       won ton wrappers
            oil for frying

Brown and drain beef.  Combine beef, onion, cheese, oregano, cumin, garlic salt and chilies.
Place a small spoonful of meat mixture on each won ton wrapper and follow package directions for folding and sealing.
Deep fry 1-½ minutes or until golden brown, drain on paper towels.
Serve warm.

Mexican Corn Fritters
Makes about 16 fritters
2          cups                             sifted all-purpose flour
1          Tbs                              baking powder
1 ½      tsp                                salt
¼         tsp                                chili powder
4                                              eggs, separated
2/3       cup                               milk
2          Tbs                              melted butter
1          cup                               small-diced ham
1          cup                               corn kernels
2          Tbs                              cilantro, chopped
Into a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and paprika.
In a separate bowl or large measuring cup, beat egg yolks; whisk in milk.
Stir egg mixture into the dry ingredients until all ingredients are moistened.
Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form.  Fold egg whites into the batter, along with ham, corn, and cilantro.
Drop by tablespoonfuls into hot deep fat at about 370°.  Fry for 4 to 5 minutes, until crisp and browned.


hefty salads

Serves 16
1          cup                               extra virgin olive oil
8          Tbs                              white wine vinegar
6          tsp                                chopped fresh oregano
3          small cloves                  garlic, minced
12        cups                             romaine lettuce hearts, chopped
12        small                             tomatoes, quartered
30        oz                                garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained
2          small                             sweet onions, very thinly sliced (“shaved”)
2          small                             fresh fennel bulbs, very thinly sliced
8          oz                                 ricotta salata (a dried ricotta cheese)
(you can sub crumbled feta cheese)
Whisk oil, vinegar, oregano and garlic in small bowl to blend well. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper.
Combine lettuce, garbanzo beans, tomatoes, onion, fennel and ricotta cheese in large bowl.
Pour dressing over and toss to coat.
Mound salad onto a serving platter and serve. Or plate up, divided among 16 individual plates.
You can make this a main course by adding 3 pounds cooked shrimp.

Serves 16
2          lbs                                cooked tri-tip beef,
                                                sliced very thin at deli and cut into strips
2          heads                           broccoli, florets divided,
                                                stem peeled and cut into chunks
            3          small                             red bell peppers,
                                                            seeded, thinly sliced and partially cooked
1          large                             red onion, sliced very thinly
1          cup                               peanut oil
4          stalks                            green onion, very finely chopped
6          Tbs                              cilantro leaves, chopped
½         cup                               apricot-pineapple preserves
2-inch piece                              ginger root, peeled, finely minced
2          medium                        Meyer lemon, juiced
4          Tbs                              rice wine vinegar (or white vinegar)
1          tsp                                crushed red pepper flakes
2          tsp                                sesame seed
2          lb                                 mixed baby greens
In a saucepan, bring 1-inch of water to a boil. Add a pinch of salt and broccoli stem pieces and steam for 1 minute. Add florets and steam an additional 2 to 4 minutes, until cooked but still firm.
Drain broccoli and run cold water over it to stop the cooking process. Mix dressing and toss with broccoli and sliced red onion.
Lift broccoli and onion from dressing with slotted spoon and place
on bed of baby greens.
            Lay slices of tri-tip on top and, just before serving, drizzle with remaining dressing. This can all be done on one very large serving platter or on individual plates.

Serves 16
For the dressing:

¾         cup                               sour cream
1-½     cup                               olive oil
¾         cup                               fresh lime juice (about 2 medium limes)
¾         cup                               roughly chopped fresh cilantro
6          Tbs                              chili powder
3          tsp                                minced garlic
3          Tbs                              minced fresh chile pepper of your choice
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste

For the salad:

1          cup                               olive oil
3          tsp                                minced garlic
3          Tbs                              ground cumin
4          cups                             diced cornbread, in ½-inch cubes,
                                                or other bread of your choice
3          small heads                   romaine lettuce, outer leaves removed, inner leaves
                                                washed, dried, and torn in halves or thirds
6          medium                        avocados, peeled, pitted, and quartered
6          medium                        tomatoes, cored and quartered
3          small                             red onions, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
1          cup                               grated Cotija cheese (sub Parmesan)

In a small bowl, combine the sour cream and olive oil and whisk together (it will
look a little curdled, but don't worry). Add the remaining dressing ingredients and whisk to blend (now it should be smooth). Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, garlic and cumin and mix well. Add the cornbread cubes and toss well to coat. Put the seasoned cubes on an un-greased baking sheet and bake in a 350° F. oven until crisp on the outside but still chewy inside, about 10 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine the romaine lettuce, avocados, tomatoes and onion. Stir
the dressing well, add just enough to moisten the ingredients (there will be some dressing left over) and toss to coat. Sprinkle with cheese and croutons and serve.

Serves 16
4          medium                                    cucumbers, peeled, seeded and diced
8          medium                                    fresh tomatoes, seeded and diced
8          stalks                                        scallions, trimmed and chopped
4          medium                                    sweet yellow pepper, seeded and chopped
12        Tbs                                          black olives (Kalamata or oil-cured,
if possible), pitted and chopped
8          Tbs                                          fresh parsley, chopped
¾         cup                                           fresh lemon juice
8          Tbs                                          extra-virgin olive oil
1          cup                                           feta cheese, crumbled (optional)
Salt and black pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients, toss well.
Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.



Serves 16

8          Tbs                              lemon juice
4          Tbs                              country-style whole-grain mustard
12        Tbs                              olive oil
4          cups                             corn kernels
4          medium                        ripe avocados, diced
4          cups                             diced red bell pepper
1          cup                               fresh cilantro, chopped.
1          cup                               diced celery
1          cup                               thinly-sliced “cebolla Mexicana” (or green onions),
                                                white and green parts

Optional additions: cooked or canned beans, shredded cheese, crushed tortilla chips, fresh chopped tomatoes


            Place serving plates in refrigerator to chill.

            In a large bowl, whisk together the lemon juice and mustard.
            Add the olive oil, whisking until smooth.
            Add remaining ingredients, and toss gently to combine.
            Add salt and freshly-ground black pepper to taste and serve immediately on chilled plates.

hearty soups

(for making risottos, soups, cioppino)
Makes about eight cups
2          lbs                                fish bones, heads, and skin from non-oily fish such
                                                as cod, sole, snapper, halibut, sea bass or monkfish
1          pound                          shells of shrimp and/or crab
2          medium                        onions, coarsely chopped
3          stalks                            celery, coarsely chopped
1          small                             fennel “bulb”, coarsely chopped
Bouquet garni
6          sprigs                          parsley
1          whole                           Bay leaf
1          sprig                             fresh thyme (or 1/2 tsp dried thyme)
6          whole                          black peppercorns
2          cloves                          garlic, peeled and slightly crunched
1-½     cups                             dry white wine
9          cups                             water
            Remove scales from any fish skin. Remove any gills. Rinse heads, bones, and skin.
            In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine all the ingredients. Bring to a boil. Skim the surface occasionally to remove fat and froth.
            Reduce heat and simmer gently uncovered for 30 minutes for light fish/seafood stock (for use in risottos).
            Cook uncovered for 60 minutes for soup stock.
            Strain the stock into a large bowl.
            If need be, store in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to month.

Seafood Minestrone
Serves 16
8          Tbs                                          olive oil
2          small                                         leeks, finely sliced (crosswise)
4          medium                                    carrots, diced
2          stalks                                        celery, diced
4          cloves                                       garlic, sliced
4          small                                         zucchini, diced
1         small                                         red sweet pepper, finely diced
16        cups                                         seafood stock (in a pinch, sub:
                                                            chicken or vegetable stock)
6          cups                                         water
2          cans                                         crushed tomatoes
4          oz                                            fresh green beans, chopped
2          cups                                         small pasta (ditalini, small shells,
                                                            broken up spaghetti, vermicelli)
1          lb                                             shrimp, cleaned and coarsely chopped
1          lb                                             scallops, coarsely chopped
1          lb                                             whitefish (non-oily, firm), cut into
                                                            very small “nuggets”
salt and pepper to taste
4          Tbs                                          parsley and/or basil
                                                            and/or fennel leaf, chopped
olive oil, to drizzle
4          Tbs                                         parmesan, freshly grated


Zuppa di Pesce e Verdure
Heat oil in a large stockpot.
Add the vegetables and garlic, and sweat for a couple of minutes over low-medium heat until slightly softened.

            Add stock, tomatoes, beans, pasta and 3 cups water. Simmer, covered, for 12 minutes.

            Add shrimp, scallops, and fish. Cook on medium-low for 6 to 8 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

            Remove from heat, stir in parsley, basil and/or fennel leaf and serve in bowls, drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with parmesan cheese.

            The soup will thicken considerably upon standing and becomes even better the next day.

Serves 16
2          large heads                   broccoli, chopped small
2          large                             red bell pepper, chopped
3          cups                             corn kernels (drained, if canned)
10        cups                             chicken broth
4          cups                             mild to medium-hot salsa
1          Tbs                              grated orange peel
48        ounces                          cheese tortellini
15        oz                                 evaporated milk
Salt , to taste
1-½     cup                               grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
¾         cup                               cilantro, chopped

Lightly steam broccoli, pepper and corn.
In a very large pot, bring broth, salsa, orange peel to a boil; simmer for 3 minutes.
Stir in tortellini and vegetables. Cook over medium heat for 6 to 8 minutes, until tender.
Stir in milk and salt; cook for 1 to 2 minutes. DO NOT BOIL or milk will curdle.
Top each serving with Parmesan cheese and cilantro.

Serves 16
4          links                             linguiça, sliced cross-wise into ¼-inch coins
4          medium                        yellow onions
1          cup                               olive oil
24        cloves                           garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
4          quarts                           chicken broth
3          whole                           bay leaves
4          lbs                                fresh kale
12        medium                        wax potatoes, peeled, cubed
3          small                             hot peppers (such as jalapeno or Serrano),
                                                seeded and finely chopped
1          tsp                                paprika
6          cups                             cooked (canned) cannelini or white navy beans
Season with salt and pepper to taste
            In a very large stockpot, sauté linguiça and onion in olive oil for 2 minutes on medium heat.
            Add garlic and cook another minute.
            Add broth and bay leaf and simmer for 10 minutes.
            Prepare the kale by rinsing thoroughly and tearing the leafy portions from the stems. Tear into bite-size pieces. Discard stems.
            Add potatoes, kale, hot pepper and paprika and simmer additional 30 minutes.
            Add beans and heat through.
            Season with salt and pepper.


            For the hot summer days.
Serves 16
8          medium                        ripe tomatoes (about 2 pounds), seeded
                                                            and cut into chunks
3          large                             cucumbers, peeled, cut in half lengthwise,
                                                            seeded, and cut into 1-inch pieces
2          large                             red bell pepper, seeded
and cut into 1-inch pieces
3          stalks                            scallion, white and green parts,
                                                            cut into 1-inch pieces
2          large cloves                 garlic
a good drizzle               extra virgin olive oil
3          Tbs                              red wine vinegar
1-½     cup                               tomato juice
1-½     tsp                                red pepper flakes
freshly ground black pepper
Combine the tomatoes, cucumber, bell pepper, scallion, and garlic in a food processor or blender and process until semi-smooth.
Add the vinegar, tomato juice, pepper flakes and continue processing just until thoroughly combined with the vegetable puree.
Transfer the soup to a bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled. Check the seasonings before serving.
Serve in chilled bowls with a table set with condiments…

Condiments, etc. to have at the table for self serve:
-- Tabasco sauce or similar hot sauce
-- finely diced vegetable mix (Roma tomatoes, red onion, green and
red peppers, celery and cucumber.
-- avocado, diced
-- herbed croutons
-- chopped cilantro
-- sour cream (or, better yet, sour cream whipped with fresh basil)
-- salt and pepper

Serves 16    
10        ounces                          dried porcini mushrooms
3          cups                             boiling water
3          lb                                 fresh mushrooms *
¾         cup                               unsalted butter
½         cup                               olive oil
1-½      medium                        onion, sliced thin
¾         cup                               shallots, sliced thin
3          cups                             vegetable broth
6          cups                             chicken broth
½         cup                               dry sherry
3          cups                             heavy cream
Salt and pepper to taste
Put dried porcinis into boiling water, turn off heat, and let soak for 30 minutes.
Remove porcinis from the water. Save the water. No need to chop the porcinis.
Chop the thick stems off any mushrooms and slice them thinly. Chop the top of the mushrooms into bite-size chunks.
Add thinner parts and smaller pieces of mushrooms to the porcinis.
Heat butter and oil in a stock pot over medium high heat.
Add onion slices and shallots. Sauté until soft.
Add chopped mushrooms (except porcinis and thinner pieces). Cook until softened.
Add porcinis and small pieces. Heat through.

Cream of “Wild” Mushroom Soup
Add vegetable and chicken broths, mushroom liquid and sherry. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
Add cream, salt and lots of pepper to taste and heat 5 minutes on low. (I like lots of pepper with mushrooms)
* Good "wild" mushrooms include matsutake, chanterelle, portabello, crimini.

Serves 16
12        cups                             chicken stock or canned low-salt chicken broth
12        cups                             beef stock or canned broth
4-½     cups                             dried lentils
6          tsp                                fennel seeds
6          Tbs                              olive oil
1          cup                               chopped celery
1          cup                               chopped carrot
1          cup                               chopped onion
1-½     lbs                                Andouille sausage, halved lengthwise,
cut into ½-inch pieces
6          tsp                                dried thyme
1-½      tsp                                Cajun/Creole seasoning
Combine both stocks and lentils in large pot over high heat. Bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat medium skillet over medium heat. Add fennel; sauté until seeds are light golden brown, about 2 minutes. Remove seeds from skillet.
Heat oil in same skillet over medium heat. Add celery, carrot and onion; sauté until onion is translucent and celery and carrot are tender, about 5 minutes.
Add toasted fennel seeds, sautéed vegetables, sausage, thyme and Creole seasoning to soup. Cover and simmer until lentils are very tender, stirring occasionally, about 45 minutes.
Season soup to taste with salt and pepper.
(Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and chill. Re-warm over medium heat, stirring occasionally.)

Serves 16
4          cups                             tomato puree
6          cups                             fresh squeezed orange juice
4          tsp                                granulated sugar
Grated zest of 2 oranges
Grated zest of 2 limes
4          cups                             diced cantaloupe
4          cups                             diced honeydew melon
2          medium                        mangos, peeled and diced
2          medium                        apples, peeled and diced
2          cup                               fresh blueberries
2          cup                               halved green or red seedless grapes
16        large                             fresh strawberries, hulled and cut in half for garnish
3          medium                        kiwis, peeled and sliced for garnish
Combine the tomato puree, orange juice, sugar, orange and lime zests, cantaloupe, honeydew, and mango in a large bowl.  Process half of the mixture in a food processor until smooth. Stir the puree into the remaining mixture.
Stir in the apple, blueberries, and grapes. Refrigerate, covered, for several hours.
Ladle soup into bowls, garnishing each with strawberries and kiwi slices.

Serves 16
8          pieces               skinless, boneless chicken – your choice
½         cup                   olive oil
½         stick                 butter
2          Tbs                  pepper
1          medium            lemon, zest of
4          bulbs                fennel, trimmed and thinly sliced
1          cup                   cream sherry
1          lb                     sliced crimini mushrooms
1          cup                   diced red bell pepper
½         cup                   finely minced fresh parsley
3          cups                 buttermilk
1          cup                   half-and-half cream
5          cups                 chicken broth

            Heat oil and butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Brown chicken on both sides then reduce heat to medium.
            Add lemon pepper, fennel and cream sherry. Simmer until chicken is cooked through but not dry. When chicken is cooked, remove it from the pan and set aside to cool.
            While chicken is cooling, add mushrooms, red pepper, parsley, buttermilk, half and half and chicken broth to the saucepan; stir.
            Tear chicken into bite sized pieces and return them to the soup. Heat until warmed through but do not boil; mushrooms and peppers should still be semi-firm.

Serves 16
15        cups                             water
2          lb                                 dried green split peas (about 2 ¼ cups)
4          lb                                 smoked pork hocks
12        medium                        leeks
8          stalks                            celery (with leaves), sliced
4          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
1          Tbs                              crushed dried savory leaves
1          Tbs                              salt
1          Tbs                              pepper
1          lb                                 cooked smoked sliced sausage
                                                (such kielbasa, knockwurst or even frankfurters)
            Heat water and peas to boiling in Dutch oven (what else!?); boil 2 minutes. Remove from heat; cover and let stand 1 hour.
            Add remaining ingredients, except sausage, to peas. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer until pork is tender, about 2 hours. Skim fat if necessary.
            Remove pork hocks; cool slightly. Trim fat and bone from pork. Cut pork into ½-inch pieces. Stir pork and sausage into soup. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer until sausage is hot, 15 minutes.
            Remove sausage and slice.
            Serve sausage with pumpernickel bread and prepared mustard if desired or return to soup.

“Lauchrahmsuppe mit Speck”
Serves 16
8          medium                        leeks
12        slices                            bacon, chopped
12        cups                             chicken or vegetable stock
¾         cup                               butter
8          Tbs                              plain flour
3          cups                             heavy cream
3          large                             egg yolks
            Slice off leek tops and root ends. This recipe needs only the tender, light green part of the leek. Slice leeks lengthwise down the center, clean well under cold, running water and pat dry with a paper towel. Slice leeks horizontally into thin slices and set aside.
            In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, sauté bacon until lightly golden.
            Add sliced leeks and sauté 3-5 minutes more or until leeks are soft.
            Pour in stock, bring soup to a boil, and then lower heat and leave to simmer.
            In a separate pot, melt butter over medium heat. Add flour and whisk well until combined to form a roux*.
            Add roux to soup, whisking well to avoid lumps. Bring to a boil and season to taste.
            Remove from heat. Lightly beat egg yolk and cream together; stir into soup.
            Serve immediately.
* a roux is a blend of a fat (usually butter) and a starch (usually flour), combined in equal parts, and cooked until the “flour-y” smell is gone. When added cold to a hot liquid (or when a cold liquid is added to a hot roux), it thickens the liquid. You need to bring the liquid to a boil to get the full effects of a roux.

“Sopa De Albondigas”
Serves 16
Caldo (broth)
1          Tbs                              oregano
3          small                             onions, chopped
6          medium                        carrots, chopped/sliced
½         small head                    cabbage, shredded
6          whole                           chayote squash, peeled, seeded,
                                                chopped into ½-inch cubes
2          whole                           Serrano peppers, roasted, peeled, seeded, chopped
4          cloves                           garlic, sliced thin
3          cans                             tomatoes, diced, with liquid
6          stalks                            celery, chopped (save leaf for garnish)
8          cups                             chicken broth
8          Tbs                              cilantro, chopped
Salt/pepper to taste
Albondigas (meatballs)
2/3       pound                           ground chuck
1/3       pound                           ground pork
1-½     cups                             cooked rice
1          tsp                                salt
1          tsp                                fresh ground pepper
1          tsp                                cumin
1          tsp                                chili powder
2          cloves                           garlic, peeled and minced
1          Tbs                              cilantro, chopped
1          whole                           egg, slightly beaten
½         cup                               corn flour (not the same as corn meal Nor corn starch)

Meatball Soup
Combine broth ingredients. Bring to a boil and immediately reduce heat to a
simmer. Cook for 30 minutes.
Combine all albondigas ingredients. 
Roll into one-inch balls and then roll each ball in the corn flour to coat lightly. 
Place them on a deep cookie sheet and bake in the oven at 375° F for 15 minutes.
Add albondigas (meat balls) and simmer for an additional 15 minutes.
This is great served with fresh-made tortilla strips.

Serves 16
Broth Ingredients
4          Tbs                              olive oil
2          cups                             fresh pumpkin, peeled and diced ½ inch
1          cup                               red onion, diced ½ inch
2          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
1          medium                        jalapeno, seeded, chopped
16        cups                             chicken broth
3          cups                             corn kernels (if canned, drained)
4          medium                        tomatoes, ½-inch diced
1          small                             jicama, ½-inch diced
Salt to taste
½         cup                               lime juice, fresh squeezed
1          Tbs                              fresh oregano, removed from stem, chopped
2          lbs                                fully cooked chicken, sliced/shredded
Heat the oil in a large pot until hot. Add the pumpkin, onions, jalapenos and garlic, then sauté until they lose their raw appearance.
Add the chicken broth, corn, jicama and tomatoes and bring to a boil.
Reduce the heat and simmer until the pumpkin is tender.
Season to taste with salt and then add the lime juice, oregano and fully cooked sliced chicken breast. Simmer for an additional 5 minutes, then cut the heat.
            Serve the soup hot and offer garnishes of diced avocado, chopped cilantro and crisp tortilla strips (freshly-made, of course).

Serves 16
6          Tbs                              extra virgin olive oil
4          small                             leeks, quartered
4          stalks                            celery, diced
2          medium                        onions, chopped
        Tbs                              salt
4          cloves                           garlic, minced
4          small                             zucchini, quartered, then sliced
2          medium                        potatoes, peeled, diced
16        cups                             beef stock**
2          cups                             ditalini pasta, or elbow macaroni, shells
8          cups                             chopped chard leaves (white stems removed)
        cup                               Italian-style tomatoes, diced
2          cups                             cooked white beans (if canned, rinsed and drained)
3          Tbs                              chopped fresh basil
1         Tbs                              chopped fresh oregano
1          Tbs                              chopped fresh rosemary (leaf only, not stem)
1          Tbs                              chopped fresh thyme

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
        cup                               Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
½         cup                               fresh parsley or basil or both, chopped
In a soup pot or large Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat.

Add the leeks, celery, and onions and season with a bit of salt
(about a teaspoon).

Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened, about 10 minutes.

Add the garlic, zucchini and potato.

Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes.


Add the stock and remaining salt.

Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to low and simmer until all the vegetables are tender, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Add the dry pasta and Swiss chard to the soup and cook, uncovered, for about 5 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, canned beans and herbs and continue to simmer until the pasta is cooked to the “al dente” stage.

Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper.

Ladle soup into bowls.
Drizzle each bowl with olive oil, if desired, and garnish with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and fresh parsley and/or basil.

Serve immediately.
            ** for the beef stock, you can substitute chicken stock, vegetable stock, veal stock or just plain water.

Serves 16
6          lbs                                fresh medium-sized clams, scrubbed
2          cups                             water
1          cup                               white wine
½         cup                               parsley stems
2          cloves                           garlic
1          leafy stalk                     celery
1          thick slice                     lemon
1          lb                                 bacon, chopped
2          large                             onions, chopped
8          stalks                            celery, chopped, leaf saved
4          large                             russet potatoes, cubed
4          small                             leeks, white and light green part only, sliced cross-wise
1          large bulb                     fennel (“anise”), chopped
¾         cup                               flour
4          whole                           bay leaves
6          Tbs                              chopped fresh thyme
4          Tbs                              chopped fresh fennel leaf
¼         cup                               chopped fresh parsley
6          cups                             fish stock (or sub chicken stock)
3          cups                             clam liquid
1          cup                               heavy cream
1          cup                               half-and-half
4          Tbs                              sherry
3          Tbs                              fresh-milled black pepper

Into a large pot with cover, put in the clams, water, wine, parsley, garlic, celery and lemon. Cover, turn heat to high, bring to boil and turn heat down to low for 5 minutes or until all clams have opened. Remove from heat, strain liquid and save it. Remove clams from shells, cut off hinge area (tough little strip along one edge) and cut in half.
Pismo Herbed Clam Chowder
Brown bacon slowly until not quite crisp and remove with slotted spoon to drain.
Pour off all but about 8 tablespoons of bacon fat.
Sauté onion, celery potato and leek in bacon fat until limp.
Add flour and cook, stirring regularly until flour is lightly browned and no longer smells “flour-y”. Add bacon fat or butter if floury coating seems too dry.
Add herbs, stock and clam liquid and simmer until vegetables are tender.
Add cream, sherry, pepper and clams and heat through.
Return bacon to mixture and serve.

Serves 16
4                      Tbs                             olive oil
2                      medium                        onions, finely chopped
2                      cups                             vegetable stock
4                      cups                             chicken stock
30                    ounces              diced tomatoes, with juice
30                    ounces                        cooked (canned) black beans, plus liquid
60                    ounces                        pumpkin puree
2                      cups                             cooked corn (drain and rinse if canned)
2                      cups                             heavy cream
2                      Tbs                             curry powder
1                      Tbs                             ground cumin
1                      tsp                               cayenne pepper
Coarse salt, to taste
Heat a soup pot over medium heat. Add oil. When oil is hot, add onion. Sauté onions 5 minutes.
Add broth, tomatoes, black beans, pumpkin puree and corn.
Stir to combine ingredients and bring soup to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium low and stir in cream, curry, cumin, cayenne and
salt, to taste.
            Simmer 5 minutes, adjust seasonings.
            Serve with dollops of Crema Mexicana (available with the basic cheeses in most large markets and always available at Latin markets).

husky vegetable sides

“Frijoles Estilo Yucateco”
Serves 16
2-½     lbs                                dried beans*, washed
3          lbs                                boneless pork leg meat, cut into small chunks
12        large cloves                  garlic, peeled and chopped
1-½     lbs                                tomatoes, roasted and peeled
2                                                          1 or 2   small                             habanero chiles, lightly roasted, seeded or not
                                                                                                            according to preferred degree of "heat"
Salt to taste
3          medium                        white onions, peeled and chopped
16        large                             radishes, chopped
2          bunches                        cilantro, washed well, stemmed and chopped
Place beans in a large pot and cover with 2 inches of water. bring to boil and boil for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to lowest and simmer, covered, for 1 hour.
Drain the beans (saving liquid) and place them along with the pork and garlic into a large pot with 2 quarts water. Cover and cook 1-½ to 2 hours or until tender.
Puree the roasted tomatoes and one or two of the chiles, add to the beans and continue cooking for 15 minutes.
Add salt to taste.
Place the chopped onion, chopped cilantro and chopped radishes on a platter, so that each diner may garnish the beans to taste.
* beans can be pinto, peruana, pinquito, “pink bean”, borlotti

Serves 16
8          Tbs                              butter
4          medium                        green bell peppers, seeded and sliced
2          medium                        yellow bell peppers, seeded and sliced
2          medium                        red bell peppers, seeded and sliced
2          large                             onions, sliced
4          cloves                           garlic, minced
1          pound                           mushrooms, sliced
2          medium                        zucchini, julienned (or Mexican, gray, Lebanese)
1          teaspoon                      chili powder
½         teaspoon                      ground cumin
Fresh ground pepper, to taste
2          cans                             enchilada sauce (mild or medium, your choice)
½         cup                               oil
16        large                             flour tortillas
        cups                             shredded Asadero or Oaxaca cheese,
                                                (or sub Monterey Jack)
½         cup                               Cotija cheese – grated (or sub Parmesan cheese)
Melt butter in two very large skillets over medium-high heat and add bell peppers and onion. Sauté until just soft.
Add garlic, mushrooms and zucchini. Sauté until just browned. Remove from heat and add chili, cumin, pepper, and 6 tablespoons of the enchilada sauce. Mix thoroughly.
Heat enchilada sauce in a wide skillet over low heat. 
Pour about 2 tablespoons of the sauce into each of two rectangular casserole dishes or baking pans (about 9” x 13”).
In another skillet, heat oil on medium high.  Quickly slide the tortillas, one at a time, through the hot oil, to soften them, making sure both sides get covered.
Dip the tortillas into the enchilada sauce to cover at least one side. On a plate, fill the center of each tortilla with 1/16th of the vegetable mix. Roll it and place it aligned from side-to side into a casserole dish. Repeat with all 16 tortillas, with 8 enchiladas per pan.

Vegetable Enchiladas
Pour remaining enchilada sauce around the edges of the tortillas. Mix the cheeses and cover the tortillas completely.
Place in pre-heated 400°F oven for 15 to 20 minutes, until cheese becomes bubbly. 
            Serve with dollops of sour cream, chopped black olives, salsa cruda and guacamole or chopped fresh avocados sprinkled with lemon/lime.

Serves 16
2          cup                               cornmeal
2/3       cup                               all-purpose flour
4          Tbs                              sugar
1          tsp                                salt
1          tsp                                white pepper
4          tsp                                double-acting baking powder
1          tsp                                baking soda
4          large                             eggs, beaten
2          cups                             buttermilk
1          cup                               vegetable oil
2          cups                             creamed corn
1          medium                        yellow onion, minced
4          Tbs                              minced hot chili peppers (jalapeno or Serrano)
2          Tbs                              minced red bell pepper
1          cup                               Monterey jack cheese, shredded
Combine the cornmeal, flour, sugar, salt, pepper, baking soda and baking powder.
Combine the remaining ingredients and add to the first mixture. Blend only until mixed; do not over-mix.
Bake in two large iron skillets -- Melt two tablespoons butter in each pan on the stovetop first. Off the heat, pour in the mixture and finish in the oven.
OPTIONAL: Place mixture in two 10-inch greased baking pans.
Bake in a preheated 350°F oven for 35 minutes or until golden brown.

“Loubia b'Dersa”
Serves 16
2          lb (4 cups)                    small navy beans, soaked overnight
½         cup                               olive oil
2          large                             onions, finely diced
6          small                             dried red chilies, seeded
20        cloves                           garlic, minced
2          Tbs                              sweet paprika
1          tsp                                freshly ground black pepper
2          Tbs                              ground cumin
12        oz                                 tomato paste, canned
4          medium                        tomatoes, coarsely chopped
12        cups                             water or vegetable broth
3          whole                           bay leaves
¼         tsp                                cayenne; or to taste
10        whole                           flat-leaf parsley sprigs
¼         cup                               chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1          Tbs                              salt
¼         cup                               chopped fresh cilantro
Cider vinegar (optional)
Rinse and pick over the beans and soak them overnight in a bowl of water to cover. Drain and proceed with the recipe.
(For the quick-soak method, place the beans in a large soup pot and cover with 3 inches of hot water. Bring them to a rolling boil for 2 to 3 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the beans stand in the cooking water for at least 1 hour, preferably longer. Drain the beans and proceed with the recipe. The older the beans, the longer they will take to cook.)
In a large soup pot over medium high heat, heat the oil, then cook the onion, stirring occasionally, until tender; 6 to 8 minutes.
Add the chilies, garlic, paprika, pepper, and cumin. Cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes.

Algerian Chili
Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, until the mixture thickens, 1 to 2 minutes.
Stir in the tomatoes and 2 cups of the water or broth and bring to a boil.
Add the beans, the remaining water or broth, the bay leaves, cayenne, and the 10 whole parsley sprigs tied together with cotton string.
Lower the heat to medium low, cover, and cook the beans until tender, 1 to 2 hours.
Before serving, discard the chilies, bay leaves, and tied parsley. Season with salt. Stir in the reserved minced parsley along with the cilantro.

A dash of vinegar is traditionally added to each bowl of Loubia on serving.

Serves 16
2-½      lb                                 baking potatoes, cut into ¼-inch slices
Oil, for baking sheets
30        oz                                 puff pastry shells
1          cup                               olive oil
2          lbs                                onion, finely sliced
3          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
1          Tbs                              marjoram
Salt and Pepper to taste
5          large                             egg yolks
¾         cup                               half-and-half
            Preheat oven to 400°F.
            Oil 3 baking sheets.
            Roll out puff pastry to ¼-inch thick. Cut into 6 pieces. Place 1 sheet of pastry on each of the baking sheets.
            Heat olive oil and sauté onions on medium heat until golden brown.
            Add potatoes and stir for 5 minutes.
            Add garlic and cook for one more minute.
            Season with marjoram, salt and pepper. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
            Spread mixture on pastry bottom leaving 1 inch border. Brush edges with egg. Cover with other pastry piece and brush with remaining egg.
            Bake for 15 minutes.

Potato Strudel
            Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes. Cut a 1-inch slit into the strudels and pour in half and half.
            Lower oven temp to 250°F and bake for another 10 minutes.
            Remove and serve.

Crema de Chili Poblano con Queso Blanco
Serves 16
½         cup                                           olive oil
2          medium                                    onions, finely diced
3          small cloves                              garlic, crushed fine
3          cups                                         roasted corn, removed from the cob
9          large                                         poblano chilies (at least 4 inches by 5 inches
in size), roasted and peeled
3          Tbs                                          flour
½         cup                                           milk
¾         cup                                           firm white cheese (Monterrey Jack,
Queso Quesadilla and Asadero work well)
To roast the chilies: place them over medium high heat, under the broiler, or over an open flame (such as your grill). Turn the chilies frequently to prevent over cooking on any one side, and let the entire chile pepper become charred and blackened.  Remove from the heat and place in a slightly damp towel, allow to cool to loosen the skin.  Once cool, carefully peel the skin from the chili, remove the stem end, and slice open to remove the seeds. Dice the chili into ½-inch by ½-inch pieces; set to the side.

            Heat the olive oil in a large heavy skillet over medium high heat.  Add the onion and sauté until just beginning to become translucent, and then add the garlic. Sauté for another minute.
Add the corn and chili and sauté these for 1 to 2 minutes, just enough to heat thoroughly and slightly brown the edges. Remove the onion, garlic, corn and chile from the pan and set to the side. 
Add the flour and stir constantly until it begins to brown slightly.

Cheesy Creamed Poblano Chili with Corn
Slowly pour the milk into the cooked flour while stirring constantly. Continue to stir until the mixture begins to form a thickened “gravy”. 
Add the cheese and stir until melted.
Return the onion, garlic, chili and corn to the pan and stir until all of these are covered with the cheese sauce.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Serve as a side dish as is or use it as sauce over potatoes, meat or other vegetables.

Serves 16
8          cups                             fresh corn kernels (or 1 pound frozen corn kernels,
thawed, divided)
¾         cup                               sugar
1 ½      Tbs                              salt
3          cups                             milk
2          cups                             heavy cream
12        large                             eggs
1          whole                           vanilla bean, split lengthwise and seeds scraped
(or 1-½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract)
1 ½      cups (3 sticks)              unsalted butter, melted and cooled to touch
12        Tbs                              all-purpose flour
¾         cup                               chopped green chilies (2 or 3 roasted Anaheim or
poblano chiles), peeled, and seeds removed*
½         tsp                                freshly ground nutmeg
* Roast chilies by slicing them in half lengthwise, placing them on a cookie sheet, brushing very lightly with olive oil and then putting them under the broiler until the skin has charred and appears loose on the pepper. Then wrap the pepper with a slightly dampened paper towel and place them in a closeable plastic bag until they have cooled to touch. The skin should peel easily from the pepper.
Preheat the oven to 350°F and butter a 4-quart shallow casserole or quiche dish. Or three 1-½-quart dishes or pans.

            In the food processor, pulse ½ of the corn until it forms a paste (this will take approximately 8 to 10 pulses on most food processors).

            In a medium-sized bowl, mix the corn paste, the remainder of the whole corn kernels, sugar, salt, milk, cream, eggs and vanilla seeds or extract. Mix well, taking care to make sure the processed corn paste is mixed in thoroughly.

Southwest Corn Custard with Roasted Peppers
Add the flour, butter and diced green chilies, stirring until combined. 

Pour the mixture into the prepared casseroles or quiche dishes or pans. Sprinkle the nutmeg over the custard.
Bake on the middle rack of your oven until the center is just set, about 40 to 45 minutes (30 minutes at the same temperature if you are using a convection oven). Remove from oven.
Allow to the corn custard to set for approximately 5 minutes before serving.


Serves 16
1          large                 yellow onion, chopped
2          medium            fresh poblano/pasilla chili, chopped small
1          large                 red bell pepper
6          Tbs                  olive oil
4          medium            Mexican squash (or zucchini), cut lengthwise
                                    and then crosswise into ¼-inch thick pieces
4          medium            yellow crook-neck squash (or all one type), cut lengthwise
                                    and then crosswise into ¼-inch thick pieces
3          cups                 cooked corn
6          Tbs                  butter
Salt and pepper to taste
Chopped cilantro for garnish
Cook onion, chilies and peppers in a large skillet in some oil on medium heat until softened.
Add squash and cook on medium-low heat for about 10 minutes.
Add the corn and butter, season with salt and pepper, and toss until heated through.
For extra heat, add a bit of chili powder with the salt and pepper.
Garnish with chopped cilantro (optional).

(including polenta, risotto and rice)

·        Recipes that call for pasta usually intend for you to use dried pasta, since sauces cling to it better.  
·        Use lots of water when cooking pasta, at least a gallon per pound.
·        You can add salt to the water if you wish, but don't add oil (except with lasagna noodles).   Bring the water to a rolling boil before adding the salt and pasta.
·        When the water returns to a boil, lower the heat to maintain a low boil.  Stir occasionally to keep the pasta from sticking together.  Don't cover the pot completely.
·        Pasta that is to be finished in a sauce is ready when it's "al dente."  It should be cooked completely through, yet firm enough to offer some resistance to your bite. 
·        If the un-sauced pasta is to be served at the table or is only topped with sauce, it should be cooked completely in the water.
·        If your sauce is thick, drain the pasta a little, retaining some of the pasta water, and add to the pan of sauce.
·        If the sauce is on the thin side, drain the pasta until all the water is nearly out.  
·        Drain the pasta in a colander, but don't rinse it unless you plan to use it, later, in a casserole or pasta salad.  Reserve a small amount of the flavorful cooking liquid in case the pasta becomes too dry and needs to be moistened.
·        Serve pasta as soon as possible.
·        For pasta salads, select short, thick tubes or shapes of dried pasta for pasta salad.  Don't use egg pasta or fresh pasta.
·        For casseroles, select tubes with thick walls or sturdy shapes.  Cook them for two-thirds of the recommended time in water, and then let them finish cooking in the oven.  
·        Different kinds of pasta cook at different rates, so select shapes of similar sizes if you're combining them.
·        Don't freeze cooked pasta unless it's in a baked casserole.
·        Many pasta shapes comes in different sizes.  The Italian suffix "ini" means smaller (e.g., spaghettini is a thin version of spaghetti), while "oni" means larger.
Pairing Pasta with Sauces
Ribbon pastas – such as fettuccine, linguine, tagliatelle, spaghetti - take thin clingy sauces, like Bolognese or Alfredo, very well, but because of the need to roll them, make it awkward to get bites of stuff in the same bite as the pasta, so aren't good for sauces that have a lot of chunks in them.

Open, flat shapes - bowties, for example - are good for chunkier sauces, where the pasta is another kind of chunk, and salads. They're not perfectly flat because perfectly flat pasta sticks to itself in unpleasant kinds of ways (try boiling broken up pieces of lasagna to see what I mean), so the bit of shape gives it enough structure to stay separated, even in a light oil dressing. Scoop or closed shapes on the other hand, aren't great for oil dressing because they tend to hide unpleasant pockets of oil, and not allow even distribution of it.

Open scoop shapes - shells, cavatelli, for example - are used where you have sauce you want to get inside the shape band be scooped up with it. Thicker sauces, with small bits of stuff in them, or baked pastas where you want cheese to ooze inside the shells.

Closed shapes - penne, trenne, macaroni - hold shape well against heavy sauces and baking. The strongest use for them is sauces that will thicken with time - so baked pastas, or cheese sauces - because the initial thin sauce will get inside the shape, and then thicken there, somewhat filling it with saucy goodness.

Spiral pastas - fusilli, radiatore - are the most structured and hold their shape best for things like baked dishes where most pastas would lose form. Chunks of sauce get caught up in the spirals and they'll hold thicker sauces, as well.

Most of the basic shapes come in multiple sizes, and you're looking for a size such that whatever openings or cavities exist in your pasta are about the same size as the chunks in your sauce.

Capelli d'Angelo in Brodetto di Pollo alle Erbe
Serves 16
4          medium                        whole, chicken breasts, boned and skinned
12       Tbs                              flour
1          Tbs                              red pepper flakes
2          Tbs                              fresh ground pepper
Salt to taste (optional)
1          very small                     yellow onion, sliced thinly
16        medium cloves garlic, sliced thinly
8          Tbs                              butter
12       Tbs                              olive oil
1          cup                               tomatoes, seeded, peeled, diced
4          sprigs                           fresh oregano
8          Tbs                              chopped fresh basil
4          Tbs                              chopped fresh parsley
2          cups                             chicken broth
1-½     lb                                 angel hair pasta
Use two very large skillets and divide ingredients between the two pans.
Flatten chicken breasts and cut into ½" by 1" strips. In a plastic storage bag, mix flour, pepper flakes and ground pepper. Put chicken strips into bag and shake.
Sautéed Chicken in Herbed Broth with Angel Hair Pasta
When all ingredients are prepared, put water on to boil for the pasta.
            Heat ¼ of the butter and olive oil in each of the large skillets on medium-high heat. 
            Take the chicken from the bag and shake off excess flour (save the flour). Add ¼ of the chicken strips to each skillet and brown each side lightly. Remove chicken from skillet with a slotted spoon, add remainder of butter and oil, heat, and add remainder of chicken. Remove when browned.
Add onion to skillet, reduce heat and sauté until soft. Scrape chicken bits from bottom of skillet. 
Add garlic and sauté briefly (not brown).
Add tomatoes, oregano, basil and parsley. Mix thoroughly. For a thicker “sauce”, add a tablespoon or so of the remaining dredging flour at this point.
Add chicken stock and simmer until reduced by 1/3.
Add pasta to boiling water.
Return chicken to skillet, mix thoroughly, and reduce heat to lowest setting. 
Put drained pasta onto plates in small nests and spoon chicken and sauce onto pasta.    
Garnish: light sprinkle of chopped fennel leaf, parsley, basil

Serves 16
1-½     cup (3 sticks)                butter
6          Tbs                              olive oil
2          medium                        onions, thinly sliced
3          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
2          lb                                 thin “spring” asparagus, cut into 3-inch lengths
1-½     lbs                                fresh mushrooms, cut into ¼-inch slices
12        oz                                 cauliflower (small florets only)
12        oz                                 broccoli (small florets only)
2          large                             carrot, cut into very thin “rounds”
¾         cup                               frozen peas, not thawed
3          cups                             half-and-half
4          cups                             chicken stock
6          Tbs                              chopped parsley
Salt and pepper to taste
3          cups                             grated Romano cheese
3          Tbs                              ground white pepper
3          lbs                                fettuccine, cooked, drained
Vegetables may be prepared in advance and refrigerated.
Heat butter and olive oil in deep skillet(s) over medium heat.  Add onion and sauté until onions are softened, 2 minutes.
Mix in garlic, asparagus, mushrooms, cauliflower, broccoli and carrots and cook 2 minutes, tossing occasionally.
Increase heat to medium-high. Add peas, half-and-half, chicken stock and parsley. Boil about 3 minutes until liquid is reduced. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Add cooked pasta, toss with vegetables and then add cheese and pepper and mix thoroughly. Reduce heat to lowest setting and let pasta mix sit, covered, for 10 minutes to allow pasta to become saturated with the sauce.
Serve immediately.

Serves 16
4          lbs                                bow tie pasta (farfalle)
8          Tbs                              butter
4          Tbs                              olive oil
4          medium bulbs               shallots, chopped
16        oz                                 fresh salmon, cut into ¾-inch cubes
8          oz                                 vodka
4          cups                             heavy cream
4          cups                             tomatoes, small dice
2          cups                             fresh asparagus tips **
1          small bunch                   fresh basil leaves, chopped
¼         cup                               chopped fennel leaf
1          cup                               grated Parmesan cheese

Cook pasta as per directions in rapidly boiling salted water.
While the pasta is boiling, in a large sauté pan, heat olive oil and butter and sauté shallots until lightly golden.
Add salmon and cook only until outside pink becomes pale all around.
Add vodka and cook one minute.
Add tomato and heavy cream and reduce to half.
Add the peas and drained pasta to the sauté pan and toss.
Serve sprinkled with basil, fennel, and parmesan.
** can be served with peas (if frozen, thaw) at less cost.

Serves 16
3          lbs                                ziti pasta
6          tsp                                chopped jalapeno or Serrano peppers
1          cup                               chopped fresh cilantro
1          cup                               sliced ripe olives
1-½     cup                               prepared basil pesto
1-½     cup                               evaporated milk or heavy cream
1          cup                               grated Cotija cheese
4          Tbs                              olive oil
3          lbs                                chicken breasts, skinless, boneless,
                                                cut into ¾-inch cubes
2          medium                        onions, chopped
6          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
2          medium                        green bell pepper, sliced
2          medium                        red bell pepper, sliced
Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
In small bowl combine peppers, cilantro, olives, pesto, milk and Cotija cheese; set aside.
Heat olive oil in 2 or 3 large skillets and add chicken. Stir fry over medium high heat until light brown.
Add onion, garlic and peppers and stir fry until chicken is thoroughly cooked and peppers are crisp tender.
When you start cooking the chicken, start cooking the pasta in the boiling water. When al dente, drain, reserving ¼ cup pasta cooking liquid.
Mix the cooked and drained pasta with the pesto mixture along with enough pasta cooking liquid to make a sauce. Cook and stir for 1-2 minutes until heated through.
Combine the pasta and the chicken and vegetables.
Serve immediately.

Serves 16
3          lbs                                pasta (orecchiette or farfalle, penne)
4          Tbs                              light olive oil
2          lbs                                mild Italian sausage, bulk or skinned links
8          Tbs                              butter
2          small                             onions, sliced thinly
1          large bulb                     fennel, sliced very thin
3          cups                             heavy cream
¼         cup                               mascarpone cheese
4          Tbs                              grated parmesan
1          cup                               chopped pistachio nuts
Salt and white pepper to taste
Put on pasta water to boil.
Heat a couple of large skillets with the olive oil. Cook crumbled sausage until done but not overly browned. You can mop up the drippings if you don’t want this dish overly oily.
Add butter, onion and fennel and cook until soft.
Add heavy cream and cook on medium heat to reduce by 1/3.
Cook pasta.
Add mascarpone, parmesan and pistachios and stir until mascarpone and parmesan become creamy with the sauce.
Add cooked pasta and toss well.

Serves 16
2          lbs                                            penne pasta (or spaghetti, rigatoni,
                                                            mostaciolli, maccheroni)
¾         cup                                           extra virgin olive oil      
3          small                                         onions, sliced very thin
12        cloves                                       garlic, sliced very thin               
16        whole                                       anchovy fillets, chopped/smashed
pinch of red pepper flakes                               
¼         cup                                           capers, rinsed and drained
8          oz                                             pitted black olives, quartered (such as Gaeta,
Alfonso or Kalamata)
56        oz                                             canned diced tomatoes            
2          tsp                                            sea salt
1          Tbs                                          dried oregano
1-½     Tbs                                          freshly ground black pepper
4          Tbs                                          finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
to sprinkle on top
Divide between two large skillets.
Heat the oil in the skillets over medium heat and cook the onion until slightly soft, stirring occasionally.
Add the garlic and anchovies and cook for a minute, stirring to break up the anchovies.
Add the pepper flakes, capers, olives, tomatoes, salt and pepper and oregano and bring to a boil.
Immediately reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
While the sauce is simmering, cook the pasta.
Drain the cooked pasta into a colander and toss with the sauce.

Pasta with Wild Mushroom Sauce
Serves 16
2          lbs                                cavatappi pasta (or farfalle, mostaciolli, mezze rigatoni)
4          medium                        leeks, white and light green parts
3          Tbs                              extra-virgin olive oil
8          oz                                 crimini mushrooms, sliced thick
8          oz                                 shiitake mushrooms, sliced thin
1          oz                                 dried porcini mushrooms (soaked in 1/2 cup water)
5          cloves                           garlic, sliced thinly
2          medium                        shallots, finely chopped
1          Tbs                              butter
8-10     large                             whole fresh sage leaves
1          cup                               heavy cream
4          oz                                 plain goat cheese, crumbled
1/2       bunch (1/3 cup)            chopped fresh parsley
1          tsp                                truffle oil (or 1 tablespoon butter, melted)
2          Tbs                              freshly-grated parmesan
Fresh sage leaves, for garnish

            Soak porcini mushrooms in warm water. Remove, squeeze out liquid and chop biggest pieces. Reserve liquid.
            Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta until al dente, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
            Meanwhile, cut leeks lengthwise and wash carefully. Thinly slice white parts crosswise (discard greens).
            Over medium heat, coat bottom of a 12-inch skillet with olive oil. Add mushrooms and leeks and sauté until mushrooms are just brown and moisture has evaporated.
            Add garlic and shallots; sauté until garlic is fragrant (add mushroom liquid if needed to prevent burning).

Pasta with Wild Mushroom Sauce
            Move leek mixture to one side of pan. Increase heat to medium-high, then add 1 tablespoon butter and sage leaves to the empty side. Cook until butter turns golden brown and sage leaves are wilted and crispy on the edges. Break apart leaves with a wooden spoon or spatula.
            Add cream and goat cheese. Stir cheese into cream, scraping up any brown bits from pan, until cheese melts and mixture thickens.
            Stir in parsley plus salt and pepper to taste. Fold all ingredients together and turn heat to low.
            Drain pasta. Drizzle truffle oil or melted butter over sauce and fold to combine.
            Add pasta and parmesan to sauce and toss well to coat. Garnish with fresh sage leaves.

Each pan serves 8; double this exact recipe for 16
1          medium                                    onion, chopped
3          Tbs                                          olive oil
½         lb                                             ground beef
½         lb                                             Italian sausage, casings removed
½         lb                                             ground veal
2          cloves                                       garlic, minced
4          oz                                             mushrooms, chopped
15        oz                                             tomato sauce
12        oz                                             tomato paste
½         cup                                           dry red wine
½         cup                                           water
1          tsp                                            oregano, leaves
1          tsp                                            basil, crushed
1          tsp                                            salt
½         tsp                                            pepper
½         tsp                                            sugar
8          oz                                             mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced
1          lb                                             Ricotta cheese
½         cup                                           freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
12        oz                                             lasagna noodles
Sauté the chopped onion in the olive oil. Add and cook the ground meats, garlic, and mushrooms. Drain.
Add the tomato sauce, tomato paste, wine, water, oregano, basil, salt, pepper, and sugar. Simmer covered for 1-1/2 hours.
Cook the lasagna noodles while sauce is simmering. Use 10 to 16 pieces depending on the width of the noodles (use more wide noodles). Drain, rinse, and drain again.

Giuseppe’s Killer Lasagna
Butter a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.
Cover the bottom of the dish with a thin layer of the sauce. Layer: 1/3 of the noodles, 1/3 of the sauce, 1/3 of the ricotta cheese (in dollops), 1/3 of the mozzarella. Repeat twice more. Cover with the Parmesan cheese.
Bake uncovered in a 350°F oven for 40-50 minutes, or until bubbly.
            For the cheese layers, you can shred the mozzarella cheese and blend it with the ricotta for easier spreading.
            This recipe, one I developed almost thirty years ago, has been around the internet many times in many forums.

Each pan serves 8; double this recipe exactly to serve 16
8-12     uncooked                     lasagna sheets
4          Tbs                              butter
2          Tbs                              olive oil
2          tsp                                garlic, very thinly sliced
2          small                             yellow onion, finely chopped
1-½      cup                               “wild” mushrooms**
2          medium-large                zucchini, sliced
2          pounds                         spinach, blanched, drained and finely chopped
2          cup                               fontina, taleggio, provolone or Asiago cheese,
or any combination thereof; shredded/chopped
1          Tbs                              fresh basil, shredded
½         tsp                                dried thyme

2          Tbs                              flour
2          cups                             hot milk
1          cup                               Parmigiano-Reggiano
2          cups                             mozzarella cheese, shredded
                        salt and freshly ground pepper to taste (I like lots of pepper)
Cook the lasagna sheets in a pot of boiling salted water for about 8 minutes or till tender but just underdone. Drain and refresh in cold water. Drain well.
Melt half the butter in a pan with the olive oil. Sauté the garlic, onions and mushrooms on low heat for about 3 minutes.
Add the zucchini and sauté on low heat for about 3 minutes or until they are tender.  Stir in the spinach, cheeses (except PR and mozzarella), basil, thyme, salt, and pepper.
To make the white sauce, heat the remaining butter in a saucepan and stir in the flour. Cook on low heat for about 1 minute. Gradually mix in the hot milk stirring constantly till smooth. Stir in the parmesan cheese, salt and pepper.

Country Style Vegetarian Lasagna (continued)
Spread a little bit of the white sauce on the bottom of a buttered/oiled 9x13, tall baking dish.
Place a layer of cooked noodles (about 1/3 of them) on top of this.
Over this, spread half of the zucchini, spinach and mushroom mixture.
Then 1/3 of the mozzarella and parmesan.
Cover with another layer of the lasagna and then with half the white sauce.
Repeat to end – zucchini, spinach, mushroom mixture, then mozzarella-parmesan, then noodles – then finish with a layer of the remaining white sauce and the remaining mozzarella and parmesan cheese.
Bake in a preheated oven at 400°F for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.
** NOTES: Good "wild" mushrooms include matsutake, chanterelle, portabello, crimini (“baby bellas”), reconstituted porcinis (good luck finding fresh ones).

Serves 16
4          Tbs                                          olive oil
3          large                                         mild Italian sausage links
2          medium                                    yellow onion, chopped
30        oz                                             tomato, peeled and diced
30        oz                                            tomato sauce
24        oz                                             tomato paste
4          cloves                                       garlic
1          stalk                                         celery, cut in half
1          whole                                       bay leaf
3          sprigs                                       parsley, Italian flat leaf
3          sprigs                                       oregano
1          cup                                           Chianti
2          tsp                                            sugar
¼         cup                                           basil, fresh, chopped
1          tsp                                            crushed red pepper flakes
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
Salt to taste
This is enough to cover
3          lb                                             spaghetti
Heat olive oil in bottom of large stock pot on medium-high. Brown sausage and remove with slotted spoon.
Put in onion and sauté until soft.
Add tomato (with juices), tomato sauce, tomato paste and a bouquet garni of garlic, parsley, oregano, and the bay leaf (enclosed within the halves of the celery stalk).
Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 2 hours on low. Keep a lid on the pot but keep it slightly askew.
Return sausage to pot, add Chianti, pepper flakes, sugar, basil, pepper and salt. Simmer for another 2 hours. Keep a lid on the pot but keep it slightly askew.
If you've made meatballs (recipe follows), add them to the last hour of cooking.

Makes about 6 dozen meatballs
½                                             baguette, crust removed
1-¼      cups                             milk
1-½      pounds                         ground beef sirloin
1-½      pounds                         ground pork (or mild Italian sausage or ground veal or
                                                some combination of the three with the beef sirloin)
½         bunch                           fresh parsley
½         bunch                           fresh basil
2          small cloves                  garlic, finely chopped
½         cup                               extra-virgin olive oil
4          large                             eggs
½         cup                               freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1          cup                               dried bread crumbs

Break the baguette in pieces and soak in a bowl with milk for 10 minutes until the bread is soft.  In a second bowl mix the beef and pork together.
Twist up the parsley and the basil into a little pile, roughly chop it and add to the meat.
Add garlic and mix thoroughly with your hands.
Squeeze the milk out of the bread and add it in small pieces.
Add eggs, parmesan, salt and pepper and mix everything together thoroughly.
Shape the meatballs into 1-½-inch balls and then roll them in the bread crumbs.
(For uniformly-sized meatballs, press the meatball mix into a lightly oiled [olive oil] ice cube tray.)
In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium high heat until it begins to smoke
slightly.  Fry the meatballs to seal the crust, turning them to brown all over.
Or bake the meatballs for about 25-35 minutes in a 375°F oven, on a lightly oiled baking sheet with raised sides.

Makes about 1-½ cups pesto; 1 cup of pesto will cover about 1 pound of pasta;
1 pound of pasta – with pesto -- will feed 4

¼         cup                               pine nuts
6          cloves                           garlic, peeled and coarsely-chopped
2-½    cups                             fresh basil leaves
½         cup                               fresh Italian flat leaf parsley
¾         cup                               extra virgin olive oil
1          tsp                                lemon juice (about ¼ lemon)
1          cup                               Parmigiano Reggiano, freshly grated

Get a small skillet extra hot. Add the pine nuts, immediately remove from heat and occasionally toss to toast all over.
Remove the pine nuts from the pan, return the pan to medium heat and add about ¼ cup olive oil and the garlic. When the garlic just begins to sizzle, turn off the heat.
When the olive oil with garlic cools, place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
            Serve with hot cooked pasta. The best choices: farfalle (bowtie), penne rigate, fettucine, linguini, cheese-filled tortellini, gnocchi. The best way to dress the pasta is to put the pesto into a large skillet/pan with a bit of extra olive oil and a bit of pasta water; turn the heat on to medium-low, dump in the pasta and toss quickly to thoroughly cover.

Portuguese Macaroni and Peas with Linguiça

Serves 16
            2-½      lb                                 linguiça, sliced into thin coins
4          large cloves                  garlic, thinly sliced
3          medium                        onions, sliced thinly
¼         cup                               oil
2          tsp                                salt
1          Tbs                              freshly-ground pepper
1          lb                                 mushrooms, sliced
2          lbs                                peas, thawed if frozen
3          cups                             tomato sauce
2          lbs                                elbow macaroni*, cooked to al dente
            In a large skillet on medium heat, sauté linguiça and onion in oil for 6 minutes.
            Add garlic and mushrooms and sauté for 4 minutes.
            Add sauce, salt and pepper and simmer for 20 minutes.
            Add cooked macaroni and peas. Simmer for additional 10 minutes.
            Sprinkle with parmesan or Romano cheese at serving.
            * the macaroni can be substituted with almost any “chunky” pasta: penne, rigatoni,         farfalle or fusilli.

Serves 16
2          pound                           hot Italian sausage links
2          lb                                 rigatoni pasta
6          cups                             marinara sauce (see Vittoria’s recipe)
2          bulbs                            fennel, trimmed and thinly sliced
2          medium                        roasted red bell peppers, chopped
1          large                             yellow onion, chopped
1          cup                               chopped fresh basil leaves
4          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
Salt and pepper to taste
2          cup                               shredded mozzarella cheese
1          cup                               freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
1          cup                               grated Asiago cheese
            Preheat the oven to 350°F.
            Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until almost tender (= “al dente”), about 10 minutes.
            Sauté the sausages in a large skillet (or two large skillets) over medium heat, turning frequently until cooked through, about 15 minutes. Remove from the skillet, cool slightly and slice into rounds.
            Add the garlic, fennel and onion to the skillet and season with salt and pepper. Cook and stir for about 5 minutes,
            Add the roasted red peppers, basil, sliced sausage and pasta sauce. Heat through over low heat until warmed.
            Combine the pasta with the sauce and vegetables in two 9x13 inch baking dishes. Spread the mozzarella, Parmesan and Asiago cheeses over the tops. Garnish with a few fennel leaves left from the bulb. Cover with aluminum foil.
            Bake for 30 minutes, then remove the aluminum foil.
            Set the oven to broil, and cook for another 5 minutes or until cheese is browned.

Curry/Creole Spaghetti
Serves 16

4          lb                                 shrimp (you can substitute with crab meat
                                                or boneless cod fish filet)
¼         cup                               olive oil
16        oz                                 crushed tomato
1          Tbs                              pepper
3          Tbs                              curry
1          cup                               bourbon
2-½     lbs                                spaghetti
Salt to taste
2 ½      cups                             fresh cream
1          cup                               freshly-grated parmesan cheese
Boil a large pot of water for the spaghetti.
Clean the shrimp well and place in a large saucepan with the olive oil and the tomato pulp.
Stirring constantly, add the pepper and curry, then pour in the bourbon and continue cooking on a low heat.
Once the pasta water starts boiling, add some salt and put in the spaghetti. When the spaghetti is al dente, drain the water and place it in a pot with the fresh cream and grated cheese, mixing well.
Pour the hot tomato shrimp (or crab/fish) sauce over the spaghetti, mix and serve hot.

Serves 16
Tomato Sauce

5          medium                                    onions, chopped
5          lbs                                            tomatoes, chopped (can be canned)
3          tsp                                            dried basil
6          Tbs                                          olive oil
8          medium                                    carrots, chopped finely
1          tsp                                            sugar
6          cloves                                       garlic, thinly sliced
4          oz                                             tomato paste
Salt and pepper to taste
Pasta and Filling

2          medium                                    onions, quartered
6          Tbs                                          olive oil
10        oz                                             mozzarella, cubed
1          cup                                           shelled pistachios, finely chopped
30        sheets                                       lasagna noodles (plus a couple extra)
1          cup                                           grated Parmesan or Asiago cheese
2-½     lbs                                            boneless chicken breast
5          large                                         eggs, beaten
5          oz                                            lean bacon
¾         cup                                           whipping cream
Salt and pepper to taste
½         tsp                                            freshly grated nutmeg

Cannelloni with Chicken, Pistachios and Mozzarella

Tomato Sauce

In a large saucepan over low heat, combine the olive oil and onions. Sauté until the onions are translucent.
Add the garlic, tomatoes, carrots, tomato paste, and seasonings. Cook, stirring occasionally, until thick and the vegetables have softened (30-40 minutes).
Cool and place in food processor. Process the sauce until smooth; reserve.

Pasta and Filling

Cut the chicken and bacon into chunks and quarter the onion. Place in a food
processor and process until finely chopped.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the chicken mixture and sauté over low heat, stirring constantly to break apart any lumps, until cooked through. Remove from heat and cool slightly.
Combine the beaten eggs and cream and add to the cooled chicken mixture along with the mozzarella. Season to taste and add chopped pistachios.
Heat water in a large pot. Keep the water at a gentle boil and add the lasagna noodles with a good handful of salt. Simmer until just tender and remove to a bowl of cold water (this will keep the pasta from sticking).
Preheat oven to 375° F. Butter two large baking dishes.
Pat-dry the pasta and cut each piece in half to give you 60 rectangular pieces, each about 5 to 6 inches long. 
Fill each rectangle with 2-3 tablespoons of the chicken mixture. Roll up each rectangle into a cylinder and pack closely in the baking dish.
Top the cannelloni with the tomato sauce, covering completely. Sprinkle grated cheese over the top and bake until lightly browned and bubbling (20-25 minutes).

Serves 16
1          cup                               extra virgin olive oil
16        whole                           anchovy fillets
5          cups                             day-old breadcrumbs
4          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
1          lb                                 frozen peas
2 ½      lbs                                spaghetti
1          cup                               torn basil leaves
2          cups                             Kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil in two large frying/sauté pans and add the anchovy fillets. Stir over low heat for 1 minute or until broken up.
Add breadcrumbs, garlic and frozen peas. Stir until breadcrumbs are toasted and golden.
Meanwhile, cook spaghetti in plenty of salted boiling water for 10-12 minutes or until al dente. Drain and dump into a large serving bowl. Add basil leaves and olives and toss. Season with salt and pepper.
Serve immediately, with finely grated parmesan.

“Pasta e Fagioli”
Serves 16
1          cup                               onion, finely chopped
1          cup                               celery, finely chopped
½         cup                               carrots, finely chopped
6          cloves                           garlic, finely minced
6          Tbs                              olive oil
4          cups                             canned crushed or petite-diced tomatoes
6          cups                             chicken broth
2          cans                             white (or cannellini beans) beans, rinsed and drained
4          cups                             ditalini (“salad”) pasta or small shells
½         tsp                                crushed red pepper flakes, or to taste (optional)
Coarse salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
8          Tbs                              fresh basil, chiffonade (thin cross cuts)
In large saucepan sauté onion, celery and carrots in olive oil until soft, about 8 minutes.
Add garlic for 30 seconds and then add tomatoes and chicken broth. Bring to a slow boil, add beans, pasta, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook until pasta is al dente, about 8-10 minutes.
Add fresh basil just before removing from heat.
            Serve with freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano.


Serves 16
4          Tbs                              olive oil
3          lbs                                bulk sweet Italian sausage
                                                (or links with casing removed)
3          medium                        onions, chopped
3          medium                        red bell peppers, seeded and chopped
6          medium cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2          tsp                                salt
1          Tsp                              freshly-ground black pepper
6          14.5 ounce cans           diced or crushed tomatoes, drained
                                                and reserve the juice, and add enough water to measure
                                                5 cups
2          lbs                                penne or rotini pasta
1          lb                                 shredded mozzarella (about 4 to 5 cups)
24        oz                                 ricotta cheese (about 3 cups)
1          cup                               chopped fresh basil

            Heat the oil in two large, deep skillets over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the sausage, breaking the meat into small pieces with a wooden spoon, and cook until it loses its raw color but has not browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer the sausage to a paper towel-lined plate.

Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of fat from each skillet and return to medium heat until shimmering.  
Add the onion, bell pepper, garlic, salt and black pepper; cook until the bell pepper begins to soften, about 4 minutes.
Add the tomatoes, reserved tomato juice and pasta; bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is tender, about 20 minutes.

Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the mozzarella, and sausage.
Dot with heaping tablespoons of ricotta, cover and let stand off the heat for 3 minutes.
Sprinkle with basil and then serve.

Serves 16
2          lbs                                cooked penne rigate pasta
8          cups                             cheese sauce (recipe on next page)
4          oz                                 sharp cheddar (white or yellow), grated (about 1 cup)
4          oz                                 gruyere cheese, grated (about 1 cup)
4          tsp                                chili powder
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Oil or butter four 8-inch baking dishes or two 9 x 13 baking dishes.
Cook the pasta 2 minutes less than package directions. (It will finish cooking in the oven.) Drain and set aside.
Combine cooked pasta and cheese sauce in a medium bowl and mix carefully but thoroughly. Scrape the pasta into the prepared baking dishes.
Sprinkle the top with the cheeses and then the chili powder.
Bake, uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving.

Mac and Cheese
CHEESE SAUCE (for Gourmet Mac and Cheese)
makes about 4 cups (to be double for the 16 servings above)
¼         cup (½ stick)                unsalted butter
1/3       cup                               all-purpose flour
3          cups                             milk
7          ounces                          Emmental cheese, grated/shredded
7          ounces                          Manchego cheese (not “aged” Manchego),
2          ounces                          Fontina cheese, grated/shredded
½         tsp                                kosher salt
1          pinch                            dry mustard
1          splash                           hot pepper sauce
1          splash                           Worcestershire sauce
Melt the butter in a heavy-bottom saucepan over medium heat and whisk in the flour.
Continue whisking and cooking for 2 minutes.
Slowly add the milk, whisking constantly. Cook until the sauce thickens, about 10
minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat.
Add the cheese, salt, mustard, hot pepper sauce and Worcestershire sauce. Stir until
the cheese is melted and all ingredients are incorporated, about 3 minutes.
Use immediately, or refrigerate for up to three days.

Serves 8; double this recipe exactly to serve 16
1          cup                               cornmeal, yellow, coarse grind
1          cup                               cold water
2 ½      cups                             vegetable broth, clear
1          tsp                                salt
2          Tbs                              olive oil
½         cup                               mozzarella cheese, part skim milk, grated
Mix corn meal and cold water thoroughly.
Bring vegetable broth, salt, and olive oil to boil. Add corn meal blend very slowly, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium and cook polenta for 20 minutes or until thick, stirring continuously. 
Polenta is done when it begins to pull from the bottom and sides of the pan.
Remove from heat, add mozzarella, cover, shake pan to loosen polenta from the bottom. Let stand for 5 minutes.
Pour polenta into shallow casserole dish (spray with olive oil spray).
Refrigerate for use later, serve as is with butter and parmesan, or broil or bake with topping.
Serving Ideas: Serve with mixed Italian vegetables (“Mediterranean Topping” follows),  Italian sausage (one sausage link, sliced, per person), mushrooms (2 lbs sautéed) or sausage and mushrooms combined.

Serves 8 (double exactly to serve 16)
2          Tbs                                          butter
4          Tbs                                          olive oil
1          small                                         onion, chopped
½         medium                                    green bell pepper, chopped
½         medium                                    red bell pepper, chopped
1          Tbs                                          hot green pepper, minced
1          small stalk                                 celery, chopped
1          cup                                           eggplant, cubed
2          small                                         zucchini, chopped
2          cloves                                       garlic, sliced thinly
¼         pound                                       mushrooms, quartered
1          medium                                    tomato, chopped, de-juiced
2          Tbs                                          parsley, fresh, chopped
½         tsp                                            black pepper, fresh milled
¼         tsp                                            basil
¼         tsp                                            oregano
6          large                                         Kalamata olives, pitted, sliced
Heat butter and olive oil in large skillet over high heat.
Add onion, bell peppers, hot pepper, and celery. Sauté 2-5 minutes until onion is soft.
Add eggplant, zucchini, garlic, and mushrooms. Toss regularly and cook 5 minutes.
Add tomato, parsley, black pepper, basil, and oregano. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.
Add olives just before serving.    
Serve over polenta, rice, or potatoes, or as a side dish
NOTES: For topping polenta, broil already-set polenta first for 5 minutes, then top with vegetables and parmesan cheese, and bake altogether for 10 minutes at 400°F.

Serves 8; double the recipe for 16
10        cups                             low sodium chicken broth
1          cup                               white wine
pinch                            saffron
8          Tbs                              olive oil
1          small                             onion, finely chopped
2          small                             carrots, diced fine
2          cups                             Arborio rice
8          Tbs                              butter
8          medium                        mushrooms, chopped
2          small cloves                  garlic, minced
4          cups, loosely-packed    spinach, chopped
4          Tbs                              parsley, chopped
2          Tbs                              basil, chopped
3          Tbs                              freshly-grated parmesan cheese
Combine and heat chicken broth, wine and saffron in a large saucepan. Keep barely warm.
In a wide skillet over medium-high heat, heat six tablespoons of the olive oil to sauté the onion and carrots; sweat the onions until soft.
Meanwhile in a separate large sauté pan, heat butter and remaining olive oil. Quickly cook the mushrooms and garlic. Turn heat to low, add spinach, parsley and basil, toss, and cook until just wilted. Remove from heat.
Add the rice to the carrots and onions and cook, 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the rice is opaque.
Reduce heat to medium-low and add ½ cup of the stock-wine mix. Stir and cook until liquid is nearly gone. Add another ½ cup stock-wine, stir, cook, until liquid is nearly gone. Repeat until stock from the saucepan is used except for maybe ¼ cup.
Add mushroom and spinach mix plus the parmesan cheese and the remaining stock to the rice, mix thoroughly and serve immediately.
NOTES : Make your own chicken broth if you can.

Serves 8; double in two pans for 16 servings
4          Tbs                              olive oil
½         small                             onion, minced
4-6      cloves                           garlic, minced
4          Tbs                              finely-diced tomato
2          cups                             rice
3-¾     cups                             chicken stock
pinch                                        cumin
½         tsp                                chili powder
            salt and pepper to taste
Heat olive oil in large skillet, add onion and cook on medium until soft.
Add tomato and garlic and mash until it’s all a smooth paste.
Add rice and coat well in tomato paste. Cook on medium-high until rice turns
Add chicken stock and seasonings and cover. Turn heat to lowest setting.
Cook for 40 minutes.
Uncover and stir to make sure rice has absorbed all the liquid; it should be dry

mixed casseroles

Serves 16
2          tsp                                dried thyme
1          tsp                                dried rosemary
1          tsp                                dried sage
1          tsp                                dried oregano
1          tsp                                salt
1          Tbs                              freshly ground pepper
6          Tbs                              oil
16        medium                        boneless, skinless chicken thighs, quartered
1-½     cup                               dry white wine
1          28-oz can                     plum tomatoes in juice; chopped, juices reserved
2-½     cups                             canned reduced-sodium chicken broth
1          whole, medium             bay leaf
2          lbs                                bulk sweet Italian sausage
2          medium                        onions, chopped
1          large                             red bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
4          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
6          19-oz cans                   cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
¾         cup                               dried bread crumbs
¼         cup                               chopped fresh parsley
            In a small bowl, mix thyme, rosemary, sage, oregano, salt and pepper. Set seasoning mixture aside.
            In a very large, wide Dutch oven (one that can go into the oven later), heat 6 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. In batches without crowding, cook chicken, adding more oil if needed, turning occasionally, until browned lightly on all sides, about 8 to 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the browned chicken to a plate.
            Add sausage to the pot, breaking up with the sides of a wooden spoon, until it loses its pink color, about 8 minutes. Remove sausage from pot and drain some of the grease.

Almost Cassoulet
            Add onions, peppers and garlic to the pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are softened, about 6 minutes.
            Add wine and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon.
            Add tomatoes with juices, chicken stock and bay leaf. Stir.
            Add back chicken and sausage. Sprinkle the seasoning mixture over and mix well.
            Bring to a simmer and then add beans.
            In a small bowl, mix breadcrumbs with parsley. Sprinkle over the top of the cassoulet.
            Bake in a 350°F oven for 30 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, gently press the thin crust that has formed on the cassoulet down under the surface. Continue baking until the cassoulet is simmering and a second thin crust has formed, about 30 minutes more.
            Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.
            If you don’t have a pot that can be used from stovetop to oven, start the cassoulet in a large stockpot on the stove, then transfer it into a large casserole dish or two smaller casserole dishes, add the breadcrumb-parsley topping and bake.
            You can prepare the cassoulet ahead of time. After adding the beans, cool, cover and refrigerate, up to one day ahead. When ready to proceed, stir in up to 2 cups of additional chicken broth if needed. Add breadcrumb-parsley topping and bake.


Serves 16
3          lbs                                Italian sausage links
6          stalks                            celery, chopped
2          medium                        onion, chopped
2          medium                        green pepper, chopped
2          28-oz cans                   crushed tomatoes
4          cups                             long grain rice
1          Tbs                              salt
2          Tbs                              ground red pepper
4          cups                             water
2          lbs                                large shrimp (I like size 21-25), peeled and de-veined
1          cup                               frozen peas
            Brown sausages about 20 minutes in 2 large skillets. Drain, reserving fat. Place sausages into a large baking pan/dish.
            In drippings in skillets, sauté celery, onion and green peppers until tender. Place in casserole.
            Add tomatoes with their liquid, rice, salt, red pepper and water to casserole. Cover and bake 40 minutes at 375°, stirring often.
            Tuck shrimp into rice mixture and arrange peas and some shrimp on top of casserole.
Cover and bake 10 minutes longer or until shrimp turns pink, rice is tender and liquid is absorbed.

Serves 16
1          stick                             butter
3          medium                        onions, minced
2          medium                        red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
½         cup                               Madras (red-orange) curry powder
1          cup                               flour
1          Tbs                              salt
1          Tbs                              sugar
1          tsp                                ground ginger

3          cups                             chicken broth
3          cups                             coconut milk
2          lbs                                boneless, skinless chicken thigh meat,
                                                cut into 1-inch cubes
2          lbs                                small shrimp (size: 36-45)
1          Tbs                              lemon juice
3          Tbs                              sherry (optional)
2          cup                               unsalted cashews, dry-toasted
            Melt butter (Ideally, you’d use “ghee”) over low heat in large frying pan. Sauté onion and bell pepper with curry powder.
            Blend in flour and seasonings. Cook over low heat until bubbly.
            Remove from heat and stir in broth and coconut milk. Return to heat and bring to boil, stirring constantly. Boil 1 minute.
            Add chicken and cook on medium heat for 2 minutes.
            Add shrimp, lemon juice and sherry and cook for 2 minutes more or until shrimp is pink.
            Serve over rice with cashews as condiment.

Serves 16
2          pounds                         skinned and boned chicken thighs,
cut into 1-inch cubes
1          pound                           skinned and boned chicken breasts,
cut into 1-inch cubes
1          Tsp                              salt
1          Tbs                              ground black pepper
1          tsp                                ground red pepper
6          Tbs                              vegetable oil
1          lb                                 cooked ham, cut into ½-inch cubes
4          small                             yellow onions, chopped (about 3 to 4 cups)
3          medium                        green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
3          ribs                               celery, chopped (about 1 to 2 cups)
12        cloves                           garlic
3          16-ounce cans              diced tomatoes, with liquid
6          cups                             chicken broth
2          pounds                         medium-size (16-20) fresh shrimp,
peeled and de-veined
1          cup                               chopped green onion tops
4          Tbs                              chopped fresh parsley
2          tsp                                hot pepper sauce (or more)
3          cups                             uncooked long-grain rice, rinsed and drained
Sprinkle chicken evenly with salt and ground peppers.
Cook chicken in hot oil in two Dutch ovens over medium heat 8 to 10 minutes or until brown on all sides. Remove chicken with a slotted spoon to a large bowl.
Add ham to Dutch ovens and cook, stirring constantly, 5 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove ham and set aside with chicken.
Add onions and next 3 ingredients to Dutch ovens and cook 5 minutes, stirring to loosen any browned bits.

Jambalaya with Chicken, Ham and Shrimp
Drain tomatoes, reserving liquid and add to pots. Stir reserved liquid and chicken broth into Dutch oven. Add chicken and ham; cover and cook over low heat 45 minutes.
Mash cooked garlic against side of Dutch ovens and blend into the mixtures.
Add shrimp, green onions and remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to medium low; simmer, stirring occasionally, 25 minutes or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed.

Serves 16
¾         cup                               oil
6          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
8          lbs                                chicken pieces (your choice)
1–½     lb                                 Italian sausage
3          cup                               sliced onions
3          cup                               sliced green pepper
1          lb                                 mushrooms, sliced
3          cans                             petite dice tomatoes
24        oz                                 tomato sauce
1          Tbs                              salt
1          Tbs                              dried basil leaves
½         Tbs                              dried oregano leaves
1          Tbs                              fresh-ground black pepper

            Brown chicken in oil and garlic minutes on medium high heat. Remove and add sausage, cooking approximately 10 minutes or until brown. Remove and slice.
            Place all ingredients into an ovenproof casserole (or two). Cover and bake at 350°F for 60 minutes or until the chicken is tender.
            Serve with pasta or rice.



Serves 16

½         cup                               olive oil
2          broiler-fryer chickens, about 2 ½ to 3 pounds each, cut into serving pieces,
or 6 pounds of chicken thighs or breasts, bone-in, with skin on, rinsed and patted dry
1-½      cup                               flour for dredging
Freshly ground black pepper

½         cup                               olive oil
4          small                             yellow onions, fine chopped
4          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
3          cups                             medium or long-grain white rice
7          cups*                           chicken stock
4          Tbs                              tomato paste or
1 cup of diced fresh or cooked tomatoes, strained
1          tsp                                oregano
1          Tbs                              salt
*Check the instructions on the rice package for the proportions of liquid to rice. They can range from 1:1 to 2:1. If your rice calls for 2 cups of water for every cup of rice, then for this recipe, use 4 cups of stock for 2 cups of rice.
Heat the olive oil in two large skillets (that have covers) on medium high heat.

Arroz con Pollo
Put the flour in a wide bowl, mix in a generous sprinkling of salt, pepper and paprika. Dredge the chicken pieces lightly in the flour mixture and put into the pans to brown. (You can skip the flour dredging part if you want. It just makes a nicer coating for the chicken.) Cook a few minutes on each side, just enough so that the chicken has browned. Use a slotted spoon to remove from pan and set aside.
Add the rice to the pans to brown. Add a little more olive oil if necessary. Stir first to coat the rice with the olive oil in the pan. Then don't stir too much or you will prevent it from browning. Let it brown and then stir a little to let more of it brown.
Add the onion and garlic. Cook the onion, garlic and rice mixture, stirring frequently, until the onions have softened, about 4 minutes.

Place the chicken pieces, skin-side up, on top of the rice.
In a separate bowl, mix together the stock, tomato, salt, and oregano. Pour the stock
mixture over the rice and chicken. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low, and cover. Let cook for 20-25 minutes, depending on the type of rice and the instructions on the rice package, until the rice and chicken are done.
Fluff the rice with a fork. If you want, you can sprinkle with some thawed peas as you fluff. Add more salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 16
8          halves                           chicken breast, boneless, skinless
1          cup                               olive oil
½         cup                               chicken broth
4          Tbs                              Santa Maria-style seasoning (a bottled blend of garlic,
                                                salt, pepper and dried parsley)
2          small                             onions, sliced
1          cup                               almonds
8          oz                                 fresh basil
½         cup                               coarsely-chopped cilantro
16        cloves                           garlic
1          cup                               freshly-grated parmesan cheese
4          tsp                                Santa Maria-style seasoning
2          cups                             olive oil
1          cup                               tomato, peeled, seeded, diced
            Place chicken breasts in marinade for 1 hour.
            Make pesto: toast almonds lightly in dry pan. Add to fresh basil, cilantro, garlic, cheese, seasoning and olive oil in food processor. Pulse and blend until a very thin and wet paste is made.
            Grill chicken (outdoors or in).
            In large skillet, heat some olive oil and toss in diced tomato. Heat through and add pesto. Remove pan from heat.
            Place chicken breast into pan, whole or sliced into bite-size strips. Toss a little. 
            Serve over pasta (linguini, fettuccini, spaghettini, vermicelli, capellini).

Serves 16

1          cup                               lime juice
½         cup                               olive oil OR vegetable oil
16        cloves                           garlic, crushed
3          Tbs                              soy sauce
1          Tbs                              salt
1          Tbs                              liquid smoke
1          Tbs                              cayenne pepper
1          Tbs                              black pepper

4          lbs                                boned, skinned chicken breasts OR skirt steak

½         cup                               water
1          Tbs                              soy sauce
1          Tbs                              lime juice
1          Tbs                              salt
1          Tbs                              black pepper

¼         cup                               oil
3          large                             yellow onions, sliced thin
1          large                             green bell pepper, seeded, sliced thin
1          large                             red bell pepper, seeded, sliced thin
1          large                            yellow bell pepper, seeded, sliced thin

For marinade: Combine lime juice, oil, garlic, soy sauce, salt, liquid smoke, cayenne pepper and black pepper in a sealable plastic container.
Add chicken/steak to container, cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight (preferred).

            For sauce, combine water, soy sauce, lime juice, salt and pepper; set aside.

Chicken Fajitas

Grill meat over a medium-high flame for 4-5 minutes per side, or until cooked

Cut meat into thin strips; set aside and keep warm.

In two large skillets over medium-high heat, cook onion and peppers in oil until brown; remove from heat; pour reserved liquid mixture over onions and peppers.

Toss together meat, onions and peppers.

Serves 16
4 to 6   pounds                         chicken parts
2          cup                               buttermilk
½         cup                               lemon juice
1          cup                               olive oil
½         cup                               finely minced onion
1          Tbs                              dried leaf thyme
1          Tbs                              salt
2          Tbs                              chili powder (or more?)
Crumb Coating Mixture
1 ¼      cup                               grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/3    cup                               fine dry unseasoned breadcrumbs
1 1/3    cup                               yellow cornmeal
2          Tbs                              dried parsley flakes
1          Tbs                              chili powder
1          Tbs                              salt
1          Tbs                              ground black pepper
Egg Batter Mixture
8          large                             eggs
½         cup                               melted butter
Oven-Baked Buttermilk Chicken
Wash chicken and pat dry.
In a container large enough to hold chicken pieces, whisk together the buttermilk, lemon juice, olive oil, onion, thyme, salt and chili powder.
Add chicken to marinade mixture; cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Oil a large baking sheet(s), such as a jelly roll pan or large roasting pan. Position rack in top third of oven.
In a large pie plate or wide shallow bowl, combine crumb coating ingredients.
In another wide shallow bowl, whisk together the egg batter.  
Remove chicken from marinade, shaking off excess, and dip each piece in the egg mixture.
Roll egg-coated chicken pieces in the bread crumb and cornmeal mixture, pressing crumbs in to make them adhere.
Place chicken on baking sheet and place in the refrigerator, covered, for 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 425°.
Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, until chicken is golden brown and crispy. Chicken juices should run clear when pieces are pierced deeply with a fork.

Serves 16
6          lbs                                fryer chicken pieces
4          cups                             buttermilk
2          Tbs                              salt
½         cup                               liquid hot sauce (or more)
4          cups                             flour
4          Tbs                              curry powder
2          Tbs                              pepper
1          Tbs                              salt
1          tsp                                cayenne (or more)
Enough oil to half fill a large cast iron skillet. For this recipe, I like a mix of 3 parts         shortening to 1 part vegetable oil.
Combine the buttermilk, salt and hot sauce. Add the chicken pieces to the mix and toss well to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4-5 hours, preferably overnight but not longer than 24 hours. Shake occasionally.
Mix together flour, curry powder, salt, pepper and cayenne and place in a large shakable container.
Take the chicken out of the buttermilk, allow it to drain and toss it in the flour mixture until completely coated.
Place the chicken, covered, in the refrigerator for about an hour. This will help the flour to adhere and promote a better crust.

Secret Ingredient Fried Chicken
Heat the oil in a fryer or large pot over medium high heat.
If you have a deep frying or candy thermometer, keep the fat at about 350° F for the whole cooking time.
Heat the oil to about 375° (it will reduce in temperature when you add the chicken) and then add as much chicken as will fit in the pan without overcrowding.
Cook the chicken until nicely dark brown on the first side -- about 15 minutes -- before turning it over for another 10 minutes or so.
Use an instant-read thermometer to check the chicken a little before this point, and take it out when the internal temp is 165° F.
Alternatively, just cut into the chicken and when it is white to the bone, it is done.
Pull from pan and allow to drain before serving.

Serves 16


8          medium                        boneless chicken breasts, skinned, cut in half
1          bouquet garni                of parsley, marjoram, and bay leaf (in cheesecloth)
4          large                             eggs, beaten
2          cups                             half and half cream
3          Tbs                              cornstarch
1          lb                                 baby carrots, cut into thin sticks
3          large                             leeks, white only, cut into sticks
1          large stem                     lemon grass, trimmed and chopped into large pieces     
1          Tbs                              lemon zest, grated
1          Tbs                              salt
2          Tbs                              coarsely ground black pepper


            Put chicken breasts in a large pan. Add enough water to just cover them. Add bouquet garni, salt, and black pepper. Bring to a boil. Cover and cook for 30 minutes.

            Remove chicken. Keep in a covered dish in a lukewarm oven. Strain stock and put back in the pan until needed.

            Using a food processor, beat egg, cream, cornstarch, lemon grass leaves and zest for sauce.
            Gently cook baby carrots and leek in stock, about 3 minutes.

            Arrange chicken breast halves on individual dinner plates. Drain vegetables and put equal portions of each on top of chicken pieces.

            Heat lemon sauce, stirring continuously until thickened. Pour sauce over chicken breasts and garnish with additional lemon zest.
            Serve hot with fried or baked potato nuggets and lots of soft bread.

Serves 16

8          whole                           boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into halves,
                                                cut thin and pounded even thinner
flour, spread on a plate
1          cup                               olive oil
2          lbs                                mushrooms, sliced
1          cup                               Marsala wine
1          cup                               dry white wine
8          Tbs (1 stick)                 butter
2          cups                             chicken broth
Salt and Pepper to taste
Heat olive oil in large sauté pans over medium-high heat.
When the oil is hot, dredge both sides of the chicken breasts in flour, shake off excess flour and place in pan. Sauté chicken, turning once, until lightly browned on both sides. Transfer the chicken to a warm plate.
Drain all but a good bit of the oil and add mushrooms. Sauté the mushrooms until they begin to release their juices.
            Add the Marsala wine and white wine and scrape loose with a wooden spoon all browning residues on the bottom and sides of the pan.
Add butter, chicken broth, salt and pepper. Cook until the liquid is reduced by half, approximately 5 minutes.
Place the chicken breasts back in the pan and cook until heated through. Transfer the chicken breasts to warm serving plates, pour wine sauce over them and serve.

Serves 16
2          20-oz cans                   pineapple chunks
16                                            skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 ½      Tbs                              vegetable oil
1          Tbs                              ground cumin
2          tsp                                ground cinnamon
4          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
2          small                             onions, quartered
2          14.5-oz cans                stewed tomatoes
3          cups                             European-style black olives, pitted
1          cup                               salsa (your choice)
3          Tbs                              cornstarch
3          Tbs                              water
2          medium                        red bell peppers, thinly sliced
salt to taste
Drain pineapple, reserving juice. Sprinkle with salt.
In two large frying pans, brown chicken in oil. Combine cumin and cinnamon, and sprinkle over chicken.
Add garlic and onion; cook until onion is soft.
Add reserved pineapple juice, tomatoes, olives and salsa. Cover, and simmer 30 minutes.
Mix cornstarch with water; stir into pan juices.
Add bell pepper and simmer until sauce boils and thickens. Stir in pineapple chunks, and heat through.


Serves 16
¾         cup                               sliced shallots
6          cloves                           garlic, sliced
4          Tbs                              peanut or corn oil
3          Tbs                              curry powder
8          pounds                         chicken, cut into frying pieces
1-½     cup                               water
3          Tbs                              salt
2          Tbs                              sugar
1          large                             lemon, zest of
2          stalks                            lemongrass
1-½     cup                               potato, cut into ½-inch cubes
1-½     cup                               carrots, sliced julienne
1-½     cup                               string beans, cut into 2-inch pieces
4          cups                             coconut milk
10        oz                                 cellophane noodles (optional)
Stir fry the shallots, garlic and oil in medium heat oil for two minutes.
Add the curry powder and stir well.
Add the chicken pieces.
When the chicken turn slightly brown, add the water. Bring it to a boil.
Add the salt, sugar, lemon, curry, lemon grass, potatoes, carrots and string beans. Stir well and bring to near boil.
Add the coconut milk and stir and baste frequently so that the milk does not curdle and the sauce dissolves smoothly. Cook the curry over medium-low heat for thirty minutes.
Add the cellophane noodles, if desired. Cook ten minutes more, or until the chicken is soft. This curry does have ample sauce.

Serves 16
6          Tbs                              peanut oil
3          lbs                                fresh asparagus, tough ends trimmed,
                                                cut into 1-inch pieces
4          lbs                                chicken thighs, cut into bite-size pieces
1          bunch                           scallions, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
6          Tbs                              minced fresh ginger
4          Tbs                              oyster-flavored sauce
2          Tbs                              toasted sesame oil
1          Tbs                              chile-garlic sauce (or more)
1          cup                               shelled salted pistachios, coarsely chopped
Heat oil in two large skillets over high heat. Add asparagus stems; cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
Add chicken; cook, stirring, for 4 minutes.
Stir in scallions, asparagus tips, ginger, oyster sauce, sesame oil and chile-garlic sauce; cook, stirring, until the chicken is juicy and just cooked through, 1 to 2 minutes more.
Stir in pistachios and serve immediately.

You can substitute chicken breasts or chicken parts, skinned or un-skinned.
Serves 16
16        medium pieces              chicken thighs, skinned
4          Tbs                                          salt
Juice of 3 lemons
4          Tbs                                          crushed coriander seeds
                                                            (or ½ tablespoon ground)
4          Tbs                                          dried oregano
12        cloves                                       garlic, thinly sliced
40                                                        green olives, pitted, chopped
1 ½      cups                                         olive oil
3          medium                                    lemon, scrubbed and thinly sliced
Sprinkle chicken with salt and arrange in baking pan(s). Sprinkle with lemon juice, coriander, oregano, garlic and olives. Pour olive oil over it all.
Cover with lemon slices and bake at 325°F for 1 to 1-¼ hour.
Serve over couscous, rice or small pasta.

Serves 16 (as entree; many more as appetizer)

3          lbs                                ground chicken
8          Tbs                              peanut or vegetable oil
4          cloves                           garlic, finely chopped
2          cups                             finely sliced green onion,
white and pale green parts only
2          lbs                                exotic mushrooms (e.g., enoki, shiitake, oyster),
8          oz                                 bamboo shoots, chopped
8          Tbs                              oyster sauce
4          Tbs                              soy sauce
32        leaves                           iceberg lettuce, trimmed into circles and chilled


2          tsp                                sugar
2          tsp                                salt
2          tsp                                soy sauce
Mix marinade ingredients, add chicken and marinate chicken for one hour.
Heat wok and add oil. When hot, add the chicken, spring onions and garlic.
As the chicken colors, add the mushrooms and bamboo shoots, stirring for thirty seconds.
Add the oyster and soy sauces, mixing thoroughly.
           Transfer to a serving bowl and serve at the table with the lettuce leaves. (or, as appetizers, cut lettuce leaves into smaller portions and top each with the cooked chicken mixture.)

Serves 16
½         cup                               olive oil
2          lbs                                skinless boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
2          tsp                                cayenne (or to taste)
1 ½      tsp                                salt (or to taste)
4          large                             red bell peppers, seeded, cut in strips
2          large                             onions, cut in strips
16        large                             garlic cloves, thinly sliced
3          Tbs                              dried oregano leaves
2          Tbs                              paprika
2          cups                             long-grain white rice
3          cups (or a little more)    chicken broth
2/3       cup                               tomato sauce
2          cups                             frozen small peas, thawed
            Season the chicken with cayenne and salt.
            Heat the oil in a large heavy pot over medium-high heat. Add the chicken, bell peppers, onion, garlic and oregano to the pot. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes.
            Mix in the paprika and rice and stir to coat.
            Add the chicken broth and tomato sauce. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer until the chicken and rice are tender and the liquids are absorbed, about 25 minutes. Add more broth if the mixture becomes dry during the cooking time.
            Stir in the peas and add more salt and cayenne if desired. Cook until the peas are heated through, about 3 minutes.

Serves 16
1          cup                               olive oil
3          medium                        onions, chopped
8          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
4          small                             green chilies, seeded and chopped
5          Tbs                              curry powder or paste
3          Tbs                              tomato purée
16        small                             skinless chicken breast halves, cut into bite sized pieces
1 ½      cups                             water
2          Tbs                              peeled and grated gingerroot
3          medium                        green peppers, seeded and sliced
Heat the oil in two large saucepans, add the onion and chili and fry for 4 minutes.
Stir in the curry powder or paste, the garlic and the tomato purée. Stir for 30 seconds and then add the chicken.
Brown the meat quickly on a high heat for 3-4 minutes, then add the water and cook for 6-8 minutes. Stir, add the ginger and green pepper and cook for 1 minute.
Serve with chapattis (Indian whole wheat bread) or naan (Indian flat bread).

Classic Chicken in Red Wine -- Updated
Serve 16
12        slices                            bacon
1          cup                               all-purpose flour
2          tsp                                salt
1          Tbs                              pepper
3-4      lbs                                chicken thighs, quartered
2          lbs                                mixed fresh mushrooms*, sliced
1          lb                                 cipollini (small Italian onions)
16        baby                             carrots
4          cups                             dry red wine
½         cup                               dry sherry
3          cups                             chicken broth
6          cloves                           garlic, minced
2          tsp                                salt
Bouquet garni (thyme, parsley, bay leaf, celery stalk)
Minced parsley
Fry bacon in large Dutch oven until crisp; remove bacon.
Mix flour, 1 teaspoon salt and pepper. Coat chicken with flour mixture. Cook chicken in hot bacon fat over medium heat until light brown on all sides, 15 to 20 minutes.  Remove chicken.
Cook mushrooms, onions and carrots until light brown. Drain fat.
Return chicken to Dutch oven; crumble bacon over chicken and vegetables. Stir in wine, sherry, chicken broth, garlic, salt and bouquet garni. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer until thickest pieces of chicken are done, 25 to 30 minutes.
Skim fat; remove bouquet garni. Sprinkle with parsley; serve in soup bowls.
Serve over noodles or with parsleyed potatoes.
* NOTE: good mushrooms for this dish are crimini, chanterelle, porcini, matsutake.
Serves 16
16        medium                        chicken thighs or breast halves
1-½     cup                               rice wine vinegar or white wine vinegar
1-½     cup                               water
1-½     cup                               sugar
½         cup                               soy sauce
6          Tbs                              sherry
½         cup                               catsup
6          Tbs                              cornstarch
6          Tbs                              peanut oil
12        medium                        fresh apricots (1 ½ lb), halved
1          small bunch                   green onions, cut into 2-inch slivers
Cut chicken parts into 2-inch pieces, using a cleaver, whacking straight down through the bone (or have a butcher do it for you).
Combine vinegar, water, sugar, soy sauce, sherry, catsup and cornstarch for sauce; set aside.
In a wok or large frying pan, heat oil and stir-fry chicken over high heat 10 minutes or until tender and golden brown.
Add apricots; stir-fry 1 minute.
Pour sauce mixture over chicken; cook, stirring until thickened.
Garnish with green onion slivers.

Serves 16+
1 ½      head                 garlic, peeled and finely puréed
8          stems                fresh oregano
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
¾         cup                   red wine vinegar
¾         cup                   olive oil
1 ½      cup                   pitted prunes
¾         cup                   pitted Spanish green olives
½         cup                   capers, with a bit of juice
6          whole               bay leaves
24        whole               chicken thighs, boneless, skin-on
1 ½      cup                   brown sugar
1 ½      cup                   white wine
6          Tbs                  fresh Italian parsley, finely chopped
In a large bowl combine garlic, oregano, salt and pepper to taste, vinegar, olive oil, prunes, olives, capers with caper juice, and bay leaves.
Add the chicken pieces and coat completely with the marinade. Cover and let marinate, refrigerated, several hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Arrange chicken in a single layer in one or two large, shallow baking pans and spoon marinade over it evenly. Sprinkle chicken pieces with brown sugar and pour white wine around them.
Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, basting frequently with the pan juices. Chicken is done when thigh pieces, pricked with a fork at their thickest point, yield clear yellow juice (not pink).
With a slotted spoon, transfer chicken, prunes, olives, and capers to a serving platter. Add some of the pan juices and sprinkle generously with parsley.
Serve remaining juice in a gravy boat.

Serves 16
4          Tbs                              butter
8          Tbs                              vegetable oil
16        pieces                           chicken, your choice
12        cloves                           garlic, peeled
4          sprigs                           fresh rosemary broken in two,
OR 1 Tbs dried rosemary leaves
Freshly ground black pepper
2          cups                             dry white wine

Put the butter and oil into a large sauté pan(s), turn the heat to medium high, and when the butter foam begins to subside, put in the chicken quarters, skin side down.
Brown the chicken well on both sides and then add the garlic and rosemary.  Cook the garlic until it becomes colored a pale gold and add salt, pepper and the wine.
Let the wine simmer briskly for about 30 seconds, adjust heat to cook at a slow simmer, and put a lid on the pan, setting it slightly ajar. Cook until the bird’s thigh feels very tender when prodded with a fork and the meat comes easily off the bone, calculating between 20 and 25 minutes per pound.
If while the chicken is cooking, you find the liquid in the pan has become insufficient, replenish it with 1 or 2 tbsp water as needed.
When done, transfer the chicken to a warm serving platter, using a slotted spoon or spatula. Remove the garlic from the pan.
Tip the pan, spooning off all but a little of the fat. Turn up the heat to high, and boil the water away while loosening cooking residues from the bottom and sides with a wooden spoon. Pour the pan juices over the chicken and serve at once.
Serve with rice or pasta.


Serves 16
olive oil
4          medium                                    onions, diced
2          lbs                                            ground turkey
16        cloves                                       garlic, crushed
3          Tbs                                          fennel seeds
2          Tbs                                          dried oregano
1          cup                                           red wine
3          15-oz cans                               diced tomatoes (or whole plum tomatoes,
                                                            crushed, will work too)
1          cup                                           freshly-grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper, to taste
2          cups                                         dried orzo pasta
3          cups                                         arugula leaves (you could also use spinach)
16        medium                                    bell peppers (yellow, orange and/or red)
                                                                        tops cut off, washed and inside white rib part
                                                            pulled off; save tops
12        oz                                             feta or goat cheese
Optional: ½ cup balsamic glaze* for garnish and
¾ cup fresh basil leaves to mix in with the arugula
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Sauté the onion in a tablespoon or so of olive oil, over medium heat. Let cook about 5 minutes, until onions are softened and starting to color a little.
Add the ground turkey, garlic, fennel seeds and oregano and cook until the turkey is browned and mostly done.
Add in the red wine and scrape any brown bits up with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula.
Add the canned tomato (if using canned whole tomatoes, break up a bit with your hands first) and Parmesan cheese.

Turkey and Orzo Stuffed Bell Peppers

Salt and pepper to taste and then stir in the orzo. Let simmer about 2-3 minutes and then remove from heat.
            If peppers don’t stand up flat, trim a little off the bottom of each pepper so that it does. Scoop filling into each pepper to fill. Top with feta or goat cheese, then replace the pepper cap top.
            Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with a little kosher salt.
            Bake in the oven for about 40-45 minutes, until peppers are soft and starting to brown nicely.
[You may have a little stuffing leftover. In which case, you can finish cooking the orzo through on the stove top.]
To serve, toss arugula and basil leaves and divide among plates.
Place a baked pepper on top of the greens. Drizzle with balsamic glaze and sprinkle with a bit more Parmesan.

Serves 16
4          lbs                                beef shoulder, cut into 1-inch cubes
1          cup                               flour
1          cup                               oil
¼         cup                               chili powder (make your own real ground chili)
2          Tbs                              ground cumin
6          cloves                           garlic, peeled, sliced thinly
2          small                             onions, minced
18        oz                                 tomato paste
4          cups                             water
salt and pepper
Spread the flour out on a plate and coat the beef cubes one by one in it, dusting off the excess. Don't skip this step because the flour also helps to thicken the sauce at the end.
Brown the beef well in a heavy-bottomed pot(s) in the oil over medium-high heat.
Pour in the spices, garlic, onion, tomato paste and water. Bring this to a simmer, season with salt and pepper and cook low and slow for about 1 ½ to 2 hours, until the beef is tender and falling apart. A good test is to take a piece and try to mash it on your cutting board with a fork; if it falls apart, it’s just right.

Serves 16
3          cups                             dried pinto beans, sorted, rinsed, and drained
6          lbs                                boneless chuck roast, well trimmed
and cut into 1-½-inch pieces
Salt and coarsely ground pepper to taste
Santa Fe seasoning (see recipe below)
¾         cup                               all-purpose flour  
¾         cup                               vegetable oil, divided
3          large                             onions, cut into ½-inch pieces
20        cloves                           garlic, minced
3          medium                        jalapeno chilies, minced, with seeds
½         cup                               tomato paste
3          cups                             red wine
5          cups                             beef stock
4          cups                             chicken stock
56        oz                                 plum tomatoes, chopped, with juices
2          medium                        smoked ham hocks
2          tsp                                red (cayenne) pepper
2          lbs                                smoked kielbasa sausage, cut into 1-inch pieces
3          medium                        red and/or yellow bell peppers, cored, seeded,
and cut into 1 ½-inch triangles
3          medium                        poblano/pasilla chili, cored, seeded,
and cut into 1 ½-inch triangles*
6          small                             zucchini squash, cut into 1-inch thick rounds
Minced fresh cilantro
In a large soup pot or cast-iron Dutch Oven over medium-high heat, place beans and cover with water. Bring just to a boil, boil for 2 minutes; reduce heat to lowest, cover and let simmer 1 hour.   Drain and rinse beans; set aside.
Place beef pieces in a large bowl; season with salt and pepper. Add 2 teaspoons Santa Fe seasoning; toss well. Add flour and toss to coat.
New Mexican Spicy Beef Stew
In a really large pot or a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, heat 4 tablespoons vegetable oil. Add beef pieces in batches and brown well; using a slotted spoon, transfer to a bowl.
Add 2 tablespoons vegetable oil; reduce heat to medium. Add onions and tomato paste; stir 2 minutes.
Add red wine and bring to a boil, scraping up browned bits.
Add beef and chicken stocks, tomatoes, ham hock, and cayenne pepper; reduce heat to low and bring to simmer.
Add beef pieces; cover partially and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add beans, cover partially, and simmer another 1 hour.
Uncover, add remaining Santa Fe seasoning, and simmer an additional 45 minutes or until beef pieces and beans are tender, stirring occasionally. Degrease stew if necessary.
Remove ham hock.
In a large frying pan over medium heat, add kielbasa sausage and cook 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate.
Add bell peppers, poblano chilies, and zucchini; sauté another 5 minutes or until crisp-tender.
Mix sausage and vegetables into stew; simmer 5 minutes longer or until just tender.
Ladle into soup bowls, sprinkle with cilantro and serve with sourdough bread or cornbread.
Continued (Santa Fe seasoning recipe)...

New Mexican Spicy Beef Stew
Santa Fe seasoning:

3 ½      teaspoons                                 ground cumin
2 ½      teaspoons                                 ground coriander
2 ½      teaspoons                                 chili powder
2          teaspoons                                 dried oregano, crushed
2          teaspoons                                 dried thyme, crushed
¼         teaspoon                                  ground allspice
¼         teaspoon                                  ground cloves
¼         teaspoon                                  ground cinnamon
In a small bowl, combine cumin, coriander, chili powder, oregano, thyme,
allspice, cloves and cinnamon.


Serves 16
2 ½      lbs                                lean ground beef
4          cups                             sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1-½     cup                               chopped onion
4          cups                             milk
vegetable oil
¾         cup                               flour
1-½     tsp                                salt
10        large                             eggs, beaten
10        small                             green chiles, roasted, peeled,
seeded and halved crosswise
1          tsp                                salt
1          Tbs                              pepper
In skillet(s), brown beef and onion in a little oil; drain off excess fat.
Season with salt and pepper.
Place half the chiles into two greased 10 x 6 x 1-½ inch casserole dishes, sprinkle with cheese. 
Add meat mixture and another layer of chiles.
Combine remaining ingredients and beat until smooth. Pour over meat mixture and bake at 350°F for 45 to 50 minutes, until knife comes out clean.
Cool five minutes before cutting.

Serves 16
½         cup                               corn oil
2          medium                        onions, finely chopped
4          cloves                           garlic, chopped
4          medium                        green peppers, seeded and chopped
2          medium                        red peppers, seeded and chopped
5          lb                                 lean boneless beef chuck, cut into 1-inch cubes
1          lb                                 tomatillos with liquid
8          medium                        tomatoes, peeled and chopped
2          whole                           bay leaves
4          whole                           cloves
1          tsp                                oregano (preferably Mexican oregano)
Salt and Pepper
1          cup                               beef broth
4          small                             stale tortillas,
soaked in water, squeezed and crumbled
In a large heavy saucepan (or two), heat the oil and sauté the onion, garlic and peppers until soft.
Add the meat and all the other ingredients, except the tortilla. Add more broth if necessary. Cover and simmer gently until the beef is tender, about 2 hours.
Add the tortillas and cook, stirring, until the sauce is thickened.
Serve with rice.

Serves 5 (triple – kinda -- for 16)
5          pounds                         beef short ribs, cut through the bone
into 2 ½- to 3-inch pieces
½         cup                               all-purpose flour
1          Tbs                              salt
1          Tbs                              pepper
4          Tbs                              butter
4          Tbs                              olive oil
2          medium                        onions, chopped
8          cloves                           garlic, chopped
2 ½      cups                             Cabernet Sauvignon
2          Tbs                              Dijon mustard
1          cup                               dried apricots
Rinse ribs and pat dry. In a paper bag, combine flour with 1 tablespoon each salt and pepper.  Drop ribs into bag and shake to coat. Lift ribs out, shaking off excess flour mixture.
In a heavy 6-quart pan over medium-high heat, melt butter with olive oil. Working in batches, add ribs in a single layer and turn to brown on all sides, about 5 minutes total per batch. With tongs, transfer ribs to a bowl.  Discard all but about 3 tablespoons fat in pan.
Reduce heat to medium and add onions and garlic to pan; stir often until onions are limp, about 6 minutes.
Stir in wine, mustard and apricots and return short ribs to pan.  Cover and bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to maintain a low simmer and cook, turning ribs once or twice to submerge meat, until very tender when pierced, about 2 to 2 ½ hours.
With tongs or slotted spoon, transfer short ribs to individual wide, shallow bowls or a serving bowl. Skim off and discard any fat from pan juices.  Boil juices over high heat until reduce to about 3 cups. Season to taste with more salt and pepper.  Pour juices over ribs.

Ethiopian Beef in Pepper Sauce
Serves 8 (double, for two large skillets, to serve 16)
2          pounds                         beef boneless sirloin
                                                or top loin steak, ¾ inch thick
2          medium                        red bell peppers, coarsely chopped
2          medium                        jalapeño peppers, seeded and chopped
3          cloves                           garlic, cut into fourths
1/3       cup                               dry white wine
1          Tbs                              grated gingerroot
1 ½      tsp                                salt
1          tsp                                ground turmeric
½         tsp                                ground cardamom
1          Tbs                              butter
1          Tbs                              vegetable oil 
2          medium                        onions, chopped
1          medium                        red pepper, cut into 1/2-inch strips
Trim fat from beef; cut beef across grain into 1 ½ x ½-inch strips.
Place chopped peppers, jalapeño peppers, garlic, wine, gingerroot, salt, turmeric and cardamom in blender container. Cover and blend on medium-high speed, stopping blender occasionally to scrape sides, until mixed, about 45 seconds.
Heat butter and oil in 14- to 16-inch skillet until hot. Cook and stir beef over medium-high heat until all liquid from beef is evaporated and beef is brown, about 15 minutes; remove beef with slotted spoon.
Cook and stir onions and pepper strips in remaining oil mixture over medium heat until tender.
Add blended pepper mixture and beef. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, until beef is hot and sauce is slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.
Serve over hot cooked rice.

Serves 16
2          large                             onions, chopped
6          Tbs                              melted butter
3          lbs                                ground beef
8          cups                             extra-wide egg noodles, uncooked
6          cups                             tomato juice
3          Tbs                              salt
1          Tbs                              celery salt (optional)
2          Tbs                              Worcestershire sauce
2          Tbs                              freshly-ground black pepper
1          lb                                 mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 ½      cups                             sour cream
            In two large frying pans or a very large Dutch oven sauté onion in butter until tender then add meat, brown lightly. You want to sear the beef so don’t put too much beef into the pan at any one time; otherwise it stews.
            Place noodles in a layer over meat.
            Combine tomato juice and seasonings and pour over noodles. Bring to a boil then cover. Simmer over low heat 30 minutes or until noodles are tender.
            Stir in sour cream and mushrooms and bring to a boil.
            Serve hot.

Serves 16
½         cup                               vegetable oil
16        lbs                                beef short ribs, cut into pieces
1          gallon                           water
4          large                             onions, sliced
4          large                             carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
4          stalks                            celery, cut into 1-inch pieces
4          medium                        turnips, cut into 1-inch pieces
2          Tbs                              salt
30 to 40           whole               black peppercorns
4          whole                           bay leaves
Minced parsley
Horseradish Sauce
            Heat oil in two Dutch ovens until hot. Cook beef ribs over medium heat until brown on all sides; drain fat.
            Add remaining ingredients except parsley and German Horseradish Sauce. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer until beef is tender, about 2 hours.
            Sprinkle with parsley and serve with Horseradish Sauce (as follows).
            German Horseradish Sauce

            4          cups                             applesauce
            4 to 8   Tbs                              prepared horseradish
            Mix applesauce and horseradish.

pork and lamb


Serves 12 to 24
5          lb                                 pork shoulder picnic roast (“pork tri-tip”)
1          medium                       yellow/brown onion, chopped
1          Tbs                              salt
1          tsp                                pepper
juice of 1                                  lime
juice of 1                                  lemon
½         cup                               orange juice
6          cloves                           garlic, peeled and “cracked” (not smashed)
8          oz                                 salsa verde 
16-32 oz                                 chicken stock/broth
Put roast in slow cooker, fat side down, turn on low.
Add the onion, salt, pepper, combined juices, garlic, and salsa verde.
Pour in enough chicken stock to cover only slightly.
Let cook for about 6-8 hours on low. Allow to cool only slightly.

Pull apart meat into smaller pieces, removing excess fat.
Sear meat pieces quickly in hot shortening on high heat to create crispy edges. Drain well.
(Alternatively, bake meat in 425°F oven for 20-25 minutes to crisp the meat lightly.) 
Return to slow cooker and cover to keep warm.
Serve with flour or corn tortillas and salsa cruda (pico de gallo), finely chopped onions, cilantro and/or guacamole.

Serves 16
3          pounds                         tomatillos
10        cloves                           garlic, not peeled
4          medium                        jalapenos, seeds and ribs removed, chopped
4          medium                        Anaheim or Poblano chiles (optional)
2          small bunch                   cilantro leaves, cleaned and chopped
6 to 8   lbs                                pork shoulder (also called pork butt),
                                                trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1 to 2-inch cubes
Freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil
4          medium                        yellow onions
6          cloves                           garlic, peeled and finely chopped
4          Tbs                              chopped fresh oregano or 1 Tbsp of dried oregano
5          cups                             chicken stock
1          tsp                                ground cloves

Remove papery husks from tomatillos and rinse well. Cut in half and place cut side
down, along with 10 unpeeled garlic cloves, on a foil-lined baking sheet. Place under a broiler for about 5-7 minutes to lightly blacken the skin. Remove from oven, let cool enough to handle.
Roast fresh chilies over a gas flame or under the broiler until blackened all around.
Let cool in a bag, remove the skin, seeds, and stem.
Place tomatillos, skins included, into blender. Remove the now roasted garlic cloves from their skins, add them to the blender. Add chopped jalapeño peppers, other chilies (if you are using them), and cilantro to the blender. Pulse until all ingredients are finely chopped and mixed.
Season the pork cubes generously with salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed skillet over medium high heat and brown pork chunks well on all sides. Work in batches so that the pork is not crowded in the pan and has a better chance to brown well. Using a slotted spoon or tongs, lift pork out of pan and place in bowl, set aside.

Chili Verde
Pour off excess fat, anything beyond a tablespoon, and place the onions and garlic in the same skillet and cook, stirring occasionally until limp, about 5 minutes. If your skillet is large enough to cook the entire batch of chile verde, with the sauce and meat, then add the pork back to the pan. If not, get a large soup pot and add the onion mixture and the pork to it.
Add the oregano and tomatillo chile verde sauce to the pork and onions.
Add enough chicken stock to cover the meat, along with a pinch of ground cloves and just a little salt and pepper.
Bring to a boil and reduce to a slight simmer. Cook for 2-3 hours uncovered or until the pork is fork tender.
Adjust the seasoning to taste with salt and pepper.

Serves 16
Dry Rub Seasoning
3          Tbs                              dried minced garlic
2          Tbs                              salt
2          Tbs                              ground black pepper
4          tsp                                crushed red pepper flakes
1          Tbs                              white pepper
1          tsp                                cayenne pepper (or more?)
Mustard Basting Sauce
2          cup                               brown sugar
1          cup                               fresh lemon juice
1          cup                               white vinegar
1          cup                               apple cider vinegar
4          Tbs                              Worcestershire sauce
1          cup                               molasses
8          cups                             prepared mustard
8          racks                            thick pork spareribs
2          cup                               your favorite dry barbeque seasoning, or to taste
Preheat oven to 250° F.
Mix together the granulated garlic, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, white pepper and cayenne pepper. Rub ribs liberally with the dry seasoning and then place them in the smoker or grill, and cover. Cook for 4 hours, turning each hour, or until very tender.
While ribs are cooking, whisk together the brown sugar, lemon juice, white vinegar, cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, molasses and mustard in a medium bowl.
Baste ribs with mustard sauce liberally during the final 30 minutes.
The meat will easily separate from the bone.
Heat remaining mustard sauce to a boil and serve on the side.

Serves 16
1          cup                               olive oil
4          medium                        onions, chopped
6          medium                        carrots, chopped
8          medium stalks               celery, chopped
8          large cloves                  garlic, thinly sliced
4          lbs                                pork, cut into ½-inch cubes
Salt and freshly ground pepper
4          tsp                                chili powder (or to taste)
2          tsp                                cumin
2          tsp                                dried oregano, crumbled
1          tsp                                ground sage
3          cup                               beef broth
4          14-½ oz cans               peeled tomatoes, un-drained
4          15-oz cans                   Great Northern or cannellini beans,
                                                drained and rinsed       
Cheddar and/or Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
Fresh cilantro, minced (optional)
Heat half of the olive oil in a large heavy stock pot over medium low heat. Add onion, carrots, celery and garlic; cook 10 minutes, or until tender.
Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in two heavy large skillets over high heat. Pat pork dry. Add pork to skillet, season with salt and pepper. Cook until pork is browned; stirring frequently (about 6 minutes).
Add pork to vegetables. Blend in spices and stir 5 minutes.
Add broth and tomatoes with liquid; bring to boil.
Reduce heat, cover and simmer until pork is tender; stirring occasionally. Cook 1 hour.
Add beans to mixture and heat thoroughly.

Serve with cheese and cilantro on the table.


Serves 16
2          lbs                                hot Italian sausage
            2          cups                             chopped onion
2          cups                             chopped green bell pepper
            2          cups                             chopped celery
            4          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
            3          35-oz cans                   tomatoes
            4          cans                             cannelini beans
            4          cups                             tomato juice
            2          cups                             chopped mushrooms
            3          6-oz cans                     tomato paste
            2          lbs                                sliced pepperoni
            3          Tbs                              Italian seasoning
            2          Tbs                              salt
            2          Tbs                              sugar
            2          Tbs                              crushed red pepper
            1          lb                                 freshly-grated Parmigiano Reggiano
Remove sausage from casing and brown the sausage in two large frying pans. Drain the excess liquid.
Add onion, green pepper, celery and garlic. Cook until pepper and celery are soft (about 5 minutes).
In a large saucepan or crock pot, add the remaining ingredients. Mix well.
Stir in browned sausage and cooked vegetables. Simmer 30 minutes or more (as much as two hours for maximum flavor).
Ladle the chili in bowl, sprinkle the grated Parmigiano Reggiano and serve.  Or serve with the cheese at the table for self service.

Serves 16
2          cups                             extra-virgin olive oil
4          lbs                                sweet Italian sausage (chicken- or turkey-based),
skins removed and shaped into mini-meatballs
16        medium cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1          Tbs                              dried red chili flakes, or to taste
2 ½      cups                             dry white wine
4          lbs                                cheese-filled cappelletti/tortellini pasta
Kosher salt
6          small bunches (or one large bunch)        gai lan (Chinese broccoli)
Freshly ground black pepper
2          cups                             fresh-grated Parmigiano Reggiano
2          cups                             chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
Set a large pot of salted water over high heat and bring to a boil.
Into two large sauté pans set over medium heat, add the olive oil and sausage “meatballs”. Cook over medium heat to render fat and get color on the sausage. Once the sausage is browned on all sides, remove and place onto a paper towel-lined plate.
To the same pans, add the chopped garlic and red chili flakes and cook until just fragrant, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Turn up the heat, add the white wine and reduce by 1/3.
While the wine is reducing, cook the pasta. Add the pasta to boiling water and cook. With about 3 minutes left, add the gai lan to the same pot(s) and cook until tender. Drain pasta and gai lan and place into the saucepan along with the browned sausage.
Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil, season with salt and pepper, to taste, and stir to combine.
Place into a large serving bowl and smother with fresh-grated Parmesan and parsley.


Serves 16
½         cup                               vegetable oil
1 ½      cup                               all-purpose flour
2          tsp                                salt
6          Tbs                              black pepper
4          lbs                                pork tri-tip, cubed
24        small                             boiling onions, blanched and peeled
8          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
2          whole                           bay leaves
2          whole                           dried chipotle peppers,
                                                or 1 pepper in adobo, diced (optional)
8          cups                             beef broth
2          lbs                                golden potatoes (such as small Yukon Gold),
                                                cut into 2-inch chunks
12        medium                        carrots, peeled, cut into 2-inch chunks
6          stalks                            celery, cut into 1-inch chunks
6          Tbs                              all-purpose flour mixed with 1 tablespoon cold water
                                                (optional, for thicker broth)
Salt and pepper to taste


            In a large stock pot(s) or Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat.

            In a sealable plastic bag, mix together flour, salt and pepper.  Add a small handful of meat at a time and shake until well coated.

            Brown meat in hot oil, in batches, about one minute per side. Remove meat, reduce heat to medium and add onions. Brown onions, about 3 minutes total, then remove from pot and set aside

            Drain excess fat from pot. Add browned meat, garlic, bay leaf, chipotle pepper (if using) and beef broth to the pot. Stir and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

            Add potatoes, carrots, browned onions and celery; cook 30 minutes more.
            For a thicker broth, 30 minutes before stew is done, slowly stir the flour-water mixture into stew.) Season finished stew with salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 16
¾         cup                               olive oil
8          stalks                            celery, finely sliced
4          medium                        leek, finely sliced
8          medium                        carrots, finely chopped
8          cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
12        links                             Italian pork sausages, skinned
4          14-oz cans                   diced tomatoes
18        cups                             water or vegetable stock or combination
4          Tbs                              thyme leaves or rosemary sprigs
8          whole                           bay leaves
1          lb                                 soup-size pasta (such as ditalini)
4          14-oz cans                   borlotti beans (or cannelini or great northern), rinsed
2          small                             zucchini, finely sliced
sea salt and pepper
parmesan and extra virgin olive oil to serve
Heat half the olive oil in a heavy bottomed stock pot. Add the celery, leek, carrot and garlic. Sauté over gentle heat for 5 minutes. Remove.

           Add remaining oil and, when heated, add the sausage meat into the pot. Break it up with a wooden spoon and fry until browned.

Return the veggies to the pot and add the tomatoes, stock or water, thyme and bay leaves, and simmer, partly covered, for 30 minutes.
Cook the pasta in boiling salted water for 6 minutes, then drain.

Add the cooked pasta, beans, zucchini, sea salt and pepper to the soup, and simmer for a further 10 to 15 minutes.

Serve with extra herbs, grated parmesan and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

Serves 16
½         cup                               extra-virgin olive oil
16                                            lamb shanks, each ½ to ¾ lb
2          medium                        yellow onion, finely diced
4          stalks                            celery, finely diced
6          large                             carrots, peeled and finely diced
24        cloves                           garlic, thinly sliced
6          cups                             dry white wine
4          cups                             chicken broth
4          cups                             peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes
                                                (fresh or canned)
6          Tbs                              tomato paste
8          sprigs                           fresh thyme
4          whole                           bay leaves
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
8          cups                             canned cannellini beans
In an extra-large roasting pan (or two) on the stovetop over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil.
Add the lamb shanks and brown on all sides, 10 to 12 minutes.
Transfer the shanks to a plate.
Add the onion, celery and carrots to the pan and sauté over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion is soft, about 10 minutes.
Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
Add the wine, broth, tomatoes, tomato paste, thyme, bay leaf and lamb shanks. Bring to a boil over high heat.

Braised Lamb with Cannellini Beans
Reduce the heat to low, cover and slow-roast in the oven at 375° until the shanks can be easily pierced with a skewer, about 2 to 3 hours.
         Add the beans, stir well, cover and continue to cook until the lamb begins to fall from the bone and the beans are tender, about 30 to 60 minutes more.
Season with salt and pepper. Remove and discard the bay leaf.
On each plate, create a bed of beans and sauce and place the shank on top.


Serves 16; serving size: 4 oz fillet with sauce

8          Tbs                              olive oil
3          large                             onions, sliced
2 - ½    lbs                                whole tomatoes, drained (reserve juice),
                                                coarsely chopped
4          whole                           bay leaves
8          medium cloves garlic, thinly sliced
3          cups                             dry white wine
2          cups                             reserved tomato juice, from canned tomatoes
1          cup                               lemon juice
1          cup                               orange juice
4          Tbs                              fresh grated orange peel
2          Tbs                              fennel seeds, crushed
3          Tbs                              fresh oregano, minced
3          Tbs                              fresh thyme, minced
¼         cup                               fresh basil, coarse chopped
Black pepper to taste
4          lbs                                fish fillets (sole, flounder, pollack or cod),
                                                cut into 16 portions

Heat oil in large stovetop pot. Add onion and sauté over moderate heat 5 minutes or until soft.
Add all remaining ingredients except fish. Stir well and simmer 30 minutes, uncovered.
Arrange fish in one or two large baking dishes/pans; cover with sauce. Bake uncovered at 375°F about 15 to 20 minutes or until fish flakes easily.


Serves 16
¼         cup                               chicken broth
3          Tbs                              cornstarch
2          cups                             Chinese rice wine, mirin, sake or dry sherry
1          Tbs                              sugar
1          Tbs                              salt
1          cup                               bamboo shoots, drained
4          small                             onions, sliced
1 ½      lb                                 fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, sliced
8          Tbs                              oil
3          lbs                                broccoli crowns, broken into small florets
3          lbs                                scallops
            Pat scallops really dry.
            In a small bowl, mix chicken broth and cornstarch; stir in sake, sugar and salt.
            In 2 large woks or large skillets, stir-fry bamboo shoots, onion and mushrooms in hot oil over high heat until onion is crisp-tender. Remove from woks; keep warm.
            In two batches, add broccoli to 2 woks; stir-fry just 2 minutes.  Remove and keep warm.
            Return wok heat to highest heat, add extra oil if wok looks dry, and add scallops to centers of woks. Stir-fry scallops for 3 minutes.
            Return vegetables including broccoli to woks; stir sake mixture and pour over all. Cook and stir until bubbly.
            Season to taste.

Serves 16
3          lbs                                            shrimp, shelled, tails removed, de-veined
2/3       cup                                           lime juice
2          cup                                           lightly packed chopped cilantro
8          cloves                                       garlic, thinly sliced
            1 to 2   tsp                                            chili powder
            1          tsp                                            cumin
32        medium                                    flour tortillas
8          Tbs                                          vegetable oil
4          medium                                    green bell peppers, sliced
4          small                                         onions, sliced
½         cup                                           plain non-fat yogurt
Green salsa or pico de gallo for garnish
Marinate shrimp in lime juice with garlic, cilantro, chili powder and cumin for 20 minutes to an hour at room temperature. 
Warm tortillas in foil (4 packages) in oven.
Heat oil in two or more large skillets and sauté bell peppers and onions for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove vegetables from pans with slotted spoon and set aside; keep warm.
Drain shrimp, reserving juice. Return skillets to highest heat and toss in shrimp. Stir for 2 to 3 minutes to get a pink color on the shrimp, no more. 
Add marinating juices to the pans and cook on high heat another 2 to 3 minutes to thicken up the sauce a bit. 
Put vegetables back in pan, warm them up and completely stir in yogurt. 

Serves 16
6          medium                        onions, sliced
6          Tbs                              butter
3          medium cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2          lbs                                cooked white beans
2          quarts                           water
4          whole                           bay leaves
2          quarts                           chicken stock/broth
2          lbs                                stewed tomatoes
2          Tbs                              thyme
3          lbs                                white fish (such as cod)
½         cup                               lemon juice
½         cup                               water

            In a 10 or 12-quart soup pot, cook onions in butter until onions are transparent, about 5 minutes.
            Add garlic, beans, 2 quarts water, bay leaves, chicken stock, tomatoes and thyme. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes.

            In two skillets or low pans, simmer fish in lemon juice and ½ cup water on low-medium heat until fish flakes easily with a fork, 5-10 minutes.

            Drain lemon water and add fish to stew; heat thoroughly before serving.

Serves 6
3          pounds                         red snapper fillets
1          tsp                                salt
2          Tbs                              lime juice
¼         cup                               olive oil
1          medium                        onion, sliced thin
2          cloves                           garlic, sliced thin
1 ½      pounds                         tomato, peeled and chopped
½         cup                               white wine
1          whole                           bay leaf
¼         tsp                                oregano
12        medium                        green olives, halved
2          Tbs                              capers
2          whole                           jalapeno peppers, cut into longitudinal strips
½         tsp                                salt
3          Tbs                              olive oil
Prick the fish on both sides with a coarse-tined fork, rub in the salt and lime juice, and set aside in the dish to season for about two hours.

Preheat oven to 350° F.
Heat the oil and sauté the onion on medium heat until soft. Add the garlic and
cook for 1 minute, without browning.

            Add the tomatoes, wine, bay leaf, oregano, olives, capers, jalapenos, and salt to the pan and cook the sauce over medium-high heat until it is well seasoned and some of the juice has evaporated; about ten minutes.

            Pour the sauce over the fish.

Sprinkle the olive oil over the sauce and bake the fish for about twenty minutes, uncovered, on one side.

            Turn the fish over and continue baking it until it is just tender; about 30 minutes more.

            Baste the fish frequently with the sauce during the cooking time.


Serves 12 (make two pans to serve 16 big guys)
16        oz                                             mascarpone cheese
4          large                                         whole eggs, separated
½         cup                                           confectioner's sugar
2          Tbs                                          confectioner's sugar
1          Tbs                                          coffee liqueur
2          Tbs                                          Frangelico (or other, hazelnut liqueur)
1/3       cup                                           coffee liqueur
1 ½      tsp                                            vanilla extract
3          oz                                             semisweet chocolate, grated, separated
2          tsp                                            coffee powder, espresso
1          package                                   ladyfinger cookies
Separate eggs and blend all egg yolks, two egg whites, mascarpone cheese, ½ cup confectioners' sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, two-thirds of the grated chocolate, 1 tablespoon coffee liqueur and 2 tablespoons Frangelico.
Beat the other two egg whites into soft peaks; gradually beat in 2 tablespoons of confectioners' sugar until stiff peaks form. Gently fold into the egg and cheese mixture.
Mix 1/3 cup coffee liqueur and ½ teaspoon vanilla extract. Dip lady fingers into this mix thoroughly but quickly. Or just brush. Do NOT saturate.
Place ladyfingers in bottom of shallow dish (9 x 12). Add half of the cheese mixture and smooth the top. Cover with half of the remaining grated chocolate. Add another layer of ladyfingers and top with remaining cheese mixture. Smooth and cover with remaining grated chocolate mixed with 2 teaspoons espresso powder.
Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Serves 8 to 16 (might be smart to double this recipe)
1          cup                               sugar
½         cup                               butter
2          large                             eggs
2          large                             ripe bananas, mashed
¼         cup                               Crema Mexicana
¼         cup                               Crema Agria
2          cup                               flour
1          tsp                                baking soda
¼         tsp                                salt
½         tsp                                vanilla
½         cup                               chopped nuts (I like toasted unsalted cashews)
½         cup                               chopped dried mango

Cream butter with sugar, beat in eggs and mix until fluffy.
Sift flour with baking soda and salt. Stir in flour mixture.
Stir in mashed bananas, both Crema and vanilla.
Stir in nuts and mango pieces.
Spoon into greased and floured 9"x5" loaf pan or 2 small loaf pans. Let stand 10 minutes.
Bake at 350°F for 45 to 60 minutes.

Serves 16
1-½      lb                                 butter, softened
1          lb                                 cream cheese, softened
4          cups                             sugar
1          tsp                                salt
12        large                             eggs, at room temperature
6          cups                             sifted flour
3          pints                             fresh strawberries, sliced
            Cream the cheese, butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add a pinch of salt and beat the mixture well.
            Add the eggs, one at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition.
            Stir in the flour.
            Gradually add the sliced strawberries, gently folding them in.
            Spoon the batter into two buttered and floured loaf pans and bake in a preheated 325°F oven for one-and-a-half hours, until the cake begins to shrink from the sides of the pan.
            Place the pans on cooling racks until cooled; turn cakes gently onto wire racks.


Makes 16

1          cup                               cooked sweet potato, mashed
½         cup                               crushed pineapple, drained
1          Tbs                              lime juice
¼         tsp                                salt
1          large                             egg, beaten
½         cup                               light brown sugar
½         cup                               blanched almonds, chopped
½         tsp                                ground cinnamon


2          cups                             sifted all-purpose flour
2          Tbs                              granulated sugar
2          tsp                                baking powder
½         tsp                                salt
2/3       cup                               vegetable shortening
5 or 6   Tbs                              ice water

            Combine and mix filling ingredients. Set aside.

            Heat oven to 375°F.

            Sift together the dry pastry ingredients.
            Cut in shortening with a pastry blender until mixture looks mealy. Add water, just enough to hold the pastry together when kneaded lightly. Roll as thin as pie pastry on a lightly floured board and cut into 3- to 4-inch diameter circles.
            Spoon filling on one half of the circle, wet edge of the pastry with a little water, then fold the other half of the pastry over; press edges together with fork times. Prick pastry tops.
            Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until delicately browned. Serve at room temperature.

Serves 8 (make two pies to serve 16)
1          Nine-inch                     uncooked pie shell
1          Tbs                              corn starch
½         cup                               chopped fig preserves
1          Tbs                              vanilla
1          cup                               chopped pecans
3          whole                           eggs
½         cup                               sugar
1          cup                               white Karo syrup
In a mixing bowl, mix corn starch and sugar.
Add syrup, vanilla and eggs and blend well.
Add pecans and figs.
Pour mixture into pie shell. Bake at 300 degrees approximately 45 minutes.

Serves 16
2          cups                             flour
2          tsp                                baking powder
1 ½      tsp                                baking soda
2          tsp                                cinnamon
1          tsp                                salt
2          cups                             sugar
1 ½      cups                             oil
4          large                             eggs
3          cups                             carrot, grated
½         cup                               almonds, chopped, toasted
1          can                               crushed pineapple, 30 oz, well-drained
½         cup                               raisins
½         cup                               coconut flakes, lightly toasted
Frosting (optional; the cakes is so moist, you really don’t need this)                              
8          ounces              cream cheese, softened
1          stick                 butter, softened
1          teaspoon          vanilla
1          pound               powdered sugar
1          pinch                salt
            Sift together first five dry ingredients. Add sugar, oil, and eggs and mix well.
Add nuts, pineapple, carrots, raisins, and mix well.
Pour mixture into three 9-inch round layer pans or two 8 by 12" pans.
Bake at 350° for 25 to 35 minutes.
            Mix cream cheese, butter, vanilla, sugar, and salt until well blended. Spread on cooled cake. Sprinkle with coconut. Refrigerate.


Serves 16


            8          cups                             boiling water
6                                              raspberry tea bags
2          cups                             raspberries
2          sticks                            cinnamon
1          cup                               sugar
4          Tbs                              Raspberry Liquor (optional)
8          cups                             watermelon, chilled, pureed/strained
6          cups                             seltzer water, chilled

            To the boiling water add the tea bags, ½ the raspberries, cinnamon stick, sugar and liquor. Let stand. Remove the cinnamon stick after 5 minutes. Remove the tea bags after 10 minutes.

            Let the tea mixture come to room temperature. Chill for 2 hours.

            Strain the tea mixture into a glass pitcher.
Strain the watermelon juice through a fine strainer. Add the watermelon juice to the tea and mix well.

To serve, fill a tall glass 2/3 with the raspberry-watermelon tea. Top the glass with cold seltzer water.
Garnish with raspberries and watermelon cubes.


Serves 16
4          cups                             apple juice, freeze for ice cubes
2 ½      cups                             water
2          small bunches               fresh mint
1          cup                               sugar
6          sticks                            cinnamon
6          cups                             grape juice
4          medium                        peaches, peeled, pitted and sliced
4          small                             pears, cut into chunks
4          medium                        oranges, sliced crosswise
4          small                             lemons, sliced crosswise
6          cups                             sparkling non-alcoholic apple cider
Mint leaves, to garnish (optional)
            Pour the apple juice into two ice trays and freeze until the sangria is ready to serve.
            Combine the water, mint leaves, sugar, and cinnamon in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat and simmer for several minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Once the mixture has cooled to room temperature, remove and discard the mint and cinnamon sticks. Transfer the remaining mixture to a large serving bowl.
            Add the grape juice, peaches, pears, and the orange and lemon slices to the serving bowl. Mix well, and refrigerate overnight.
            Just before serving, mix in the sparkling apple cider and the apple juice ice cubes.
            Garnish with fresh mint leaves, if desired.



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