November 8, 2009



(6 Servings)

3 strips bacon

1 medium onion

1 tablespoon butter

1 teaspoon olive oil

One 16-ounce tub sour cream

Pinch of sugar


1. Cook the bacon in a skillet over medium heat until golden brown and crisp. Drain on paper towels and set aside. Pour the bacon grease from the skillet and dispose of it, but don’t wipe out the skillet.
2. Peel the onion and slice it in half lengthwise. Cut the halves crosswise into thin slices. Add the butter and oil to the skillet used to cook the bacon and melt butter over medium high heat. Add the onions and salt and pepper to taste. Cook, stirring often, until the onions are very soft and golden, about 25 minutes. Stir in the sugar and remove from heat. Let cool completely.
3. Crumble the cooked bacon and stir it into the sour cream, saving a few crumbles for garnish. Stir in the cooled onions and mix well. Serve immediately or refrigerate until serving time. Bring to room temperature before serving.

TO MAKE OVEN ROASTED FRIES, preheat oven to 425 degrees. Cut 3 large, unpeeled baking potatoes in half lengthwise, then cut each half into thick wedges. (3 to 4 wedges per half, depending on the size of the potato.) Place wedges on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil; toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast 25 minutes. Using a metal spatula, turn wedges over. Roast until tender and golden brown in spots, about 10 minutes longer. The fries should be crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. Sprinkle with more salt and pepper, if desired and serve immediately. (Serves 6)

Frozen Chocolate-Covered Cappuccino Crunch Cake


* 1 (10 3/4 oz.) frozen pound cake, thawed
* 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
* 1 3/4 cups (11.5-oz. pkg.) NESTLE® TOLL HOUSE® Milk Chocolate Morsels
* 4 cups (1 quart) coffee ice cream, softened
* 1 cup frozen whipped topping, thawed
* 1 3/4 cups coarsely crushed malted milk balls
* Frozen whipped topping, thawed (optional)
* Coarsely crushed malted milk balls, (optional)


1. Slice pound cake into 1/8- to 1/4-inch slices. Place half of the slices on bottom of 9-inch spring form pan; press down firmly. Set remaining slices aside.
2. Bring cream just to a boil in medium saucepan. Remove from heat. Add milk chocolate morsels; let stand 5 minutes. Whisk until well combined and smooth. Pour half of the chocolate mixture over pound cake in pan, spreading evenly to within 1/4-inch of edge of pan.
3. Cover; freeze for 1 1/2 hours or until chocolate is set.
4. Combine softened ice cream and whipped topping in large bowl. Fold in 1 3/4 cups crushed malted milk balls. Spread over chocolate layer in pan. Cover;
5. Freeze until ice cream is firm, about 2 hours.
6. Top ice cream with remaining pound cake slices; press down firmly. Spread remaining chocolate mixture over pound cake. Cover; freeze at least 6 hours
7. To serve, remove sides of pan. Garnish with additional whipped dessert topping and sprinkle with crushed malted milk balls, if desired. To cut cake easily, run a knife under hot water and dry with a paper towel before making slices.

No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars


* 3/4 cup butter
* 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 3 cups quick cooking oats
* 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
* 1/2 cup peanut butter (smooth or chunky)

1. Melt butter in a large sauce pan over low heat. Stir in brown sugar, vanilla, and oats. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes. Press half of mixture in to the bottom of a buttered 8 x 8 dish.

2. In a microwave safe bowl, microwave the chocolate and peanut butter, stirring every 30 seconds until melted and blended. Pour the chocolate peanut butter mixture over the crust, reserving a couple of spoonfuls to drizzle over the top.

3. Sprinkle the remaining oat mixture over the chocolate and peanut butter, pressing gently to form a crust. Drizzle the remaining chocolate and peanut butter over the top of the bars.

4. Refrigerate for 3 hours before cutting and serving.

Three-Peppercorn Crown Roast

1 hour 15 minutes

For the lamb:

* 2 teaspoons pink, green and black peppercorns, cracked
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1 crown roast of lamb

For the stuffing:

* 1 ounce dried cepes
* 3 cups water
* 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
* 4 shallots, peeled and minced
* 5 cups stemmed and sliced shiitake mushrooms
* 5 cups stemmed and sliced domestic mushrooms
* 1/2 cup red wine
* 3 tablespoons minced parsley
* 1 teaspoon salt plus more to taste
* Freshly ground pepper to taste


To make the lamb, preheat oven to 425 degrees. Combine the peppercorns and salt, and rub over the outside of the roast, as above. Bake, using recipe for Basic Crown Roast of Lamb (see recipe).
While the roast is cooking, make the stuffing. Combine the cepes and water in a small saucepan. Simmer until mushrooms are soft, about 10 minutes. Drain, reserving liquid. Return the liquid to the pan and simmer until reduced to 3/4 cup, about 15 minutes. Set aside. Coarsely chop the cepes and set aside.
Melt the butter in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook until soft, about 2 minutes. Add the cepes, shiitakes and domestic mushrooms. Cook until soft, about 8 minutes. Add cepe broth, wine, parsley, salt and pepper. Cook for 10 minutes.
Remove roast from oven. Turn roast over, place on a platter, and fill the cavity with the stuffing. Place into a serving dish any stuffing that doesn't fit. Serve immediately.

6 to 8 servings

Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 590 calories, 30 grams fat, 210 milligrams cholesterol, 800 milligrams sodium (before salting to taste), 65 grams protein, 10 grams carbohydrate.

Chocolate Chestnut And Cherry Cake

* 1 pound bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
* 10 tablespoons unsalted butter
* 1/4 cup heavy cream
* 1/2 cup sweetened chestnut puree
* 5 eggs, separated
* 1 cup dried cherries, coarsely chopped
* 1/4 cup sugar
* Whipped cream, for garnish


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 10-inch springform pan and set aside. Place the chocolate and butter in a double boiler, over barely simmering water. Heat, stirring from time to time, until melted and smooth. Remove from heat and whisk in the cream and the chestnut puree.
Place the egg yolks in a large bowl and whisk until yolks have thickened and turned a pale yellow color. Spoon the chocolate mixture into the bowl with the yolks and whisk until smooth. Stir in the dried cherries.
Beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in the sugar. Stir 1/3 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture to lighten. Fold in the remaining whites. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan.
Bake until the cake just springs back when touched in the center, 20 to 25 minutes. Place on a rack to cool completely. Cut into wedges and serve with softly whipped cream.

8 - 10 servings

Orange-Chocolate Dacquoise

* 6 extra-large egg whites (1 scant cup), at room temperature
* Pinch of cream of tartar
* 1/2 cup sugar
* 1 1/3 cups (6 ounces) ground almonds

Chocolate Dipped Oranges

* 1 navel orange
* 3 ounces imported bittersweet chocolate
* 1 teaspoon vegetable oil

Orange-Chocolate Buttercream

* 6 extra-large egg whites (1 scant cup), at room temperature
* 1 1/2 cups superfine sugar (or processed regular sugar)
* 1 pound unsalted butter, cut into pieces, at room temperature
* 6 ounces imported bittersweet chocolate, plus chocolate left over from dipping the orange pieces
* 1 tablespoon water
* 1 tablespoon orange extract
* Zest of 1 orange, minced
* 2 tablespoons Grand Marnier
* 1/2 teaspoon salt


To make the meringue layers, preheat the oven to 250 degrees. Generously butter and flour two cookie sheets. Shake extra flour from sheets. Trace three circles about eight inches in diameter on them.
Place egg whites in a large bowl, add cream of tartar and beat until soft peaks form. Gradually add 1/4 cup sugar and beat until egg whites are stiff. Add another 1/4 cup sugar to the ground almonds and, reserving 1/3 cup of the mixture, fold the rest into the egg whites.
Fill a pastry bag fitted with a plain (No. 3) tip with the egg-white mixture, and pipe circles following the patterns on the cookie sheets, working from the outside toward the center. Smooth any missed spaces with a spatula. Pipe or spoon extra mixture in dollops on cookie sheets.
Bake the meringues in the middle of the oven, rotating for even cooking, for 55 to 75 minutes, until firm to the touch and lightly colored. Remove from the oven and run a long, thin-bladed knife or spatula carefully under the meringues. If they are not firm, return to oven and check again in five-minute increments. Once firm, transfer them to cake racks. They will become crisper when cooled.
For the orange segments, remove and mince the orange zest. Set aside. Remove as much pith as possible and carefully separate the fruit into segments without breaking the membranes.
Melt the chocolate in a double boiler and stir in the vegetable oil. Allow the mixture to cool slightly, then dip each orange segment halfway into the chocolate, letting extra chocolate drip back into the pan. Place the segments on wax paper to harden. Once hardened, cover lightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until needed.
To prepare the buttercream, place egg whites in a large metal mixing bowl and set over (not touching) boiling water. Using a wire whisk, beat, while gradually adding sugar, until the mixture is slightly thickened and reaches 105 degrees on an instant-read or candy thermometer.
Immediately remove bowl from the heat and begin beating the mixture with an electric mixer. Continue to beat while gradually adding pieces of butter. Beat until the mixture reaches room temperature and thickens into the consistency of stiff filling - about 10 to 15 minutes. (The buttercream will look ugly and you will think that it won't come together. Keep beating. It will!)
Meanwhile, add the six ounces of chocolate and tablespoon of water to the double boiler used for the garnish. Let it all melt, then add the orange extract, zest, Grand Marnier and salt, and stir to blend. Stir in half a cup of the buttercream and beat until chocolate is smooth. Scrape the mixture into the bowl of buttercream and mix well. Refrigerate for 10 to 20 minutes.
To assemble the dacquoise, save the best meringue for the top. Put a small amount of buttercream in the center of a dessert plate, or a cardboard circle on a turntable, and place a meringue over it. Spread a generous quarter of the filling over this, making it a little thicker toward the outside.
Gently place the second meringue on top, pushing down lightly, and spread another fourth of the filling. Add the final meringue layer and cover the top and sides of the dacquoise with another fourth of the buttercream.
Crumble the reserved pieces of meringue and combine them with the sugar-nut mixture. Pat this around the sides of the dacquoise. Arrange the chocolate-dipped orange segments on top like spokes of a wheel and pipe the remaining buttercream through a pastry bag fitted with a star tip, making rosettes on the outside edge. Refrigerate, uncovered, until an hour before serving.

Eight to 12 servings

In dry weather, the meringues may be made the night before and left out in a cool, dry spot. If it is humid, do not attempt this.

Bourbon-Chocolate Pecan Pie

* 1 9-inch pie crust
* 3 large eggs lightly beaten
* 1/3 cup sugar
* 3 tablespoons firmly packed light brown sugar
* 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
* 3/4 cup light corn syrup
* 1/4 cup butter, melted
* 3 tablespoons good bourbon
* 1 cup semisweet-chocolate morsels
* 2 cups pecan halves


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Fit the pie crust into a pie plate, prick the bottom with a fork and set aside.
Combine the eggs, sugar, brown sugar, flour, corn syrup, melted butter and bourbon in a bowl. Lay the pecans evenly across the bottom of the pie crust. Top with the chocolate bits. Pour the egg mixture over the nuts and chocolate and bake for 50 to 55 minutes, until firm. Serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

8 servings

Holiday Cranberry Chutney


* 1/2 cup cider vinegar
* 2 1/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
* 3/4 teaspoon curry powder
* 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
* 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
* 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
* 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
* 1 1/2 cups water
* 2 lemons, rind grated finely, pith discarded and fruit cut into sections
* 2 navel oranges, rind grated finely, pith discarded and fruit cut into sections
* 1 tart apple, peeled and coarsely chopped
* 6 cups fresh cranberries
* 1/2 cup golden raisins
* 1/2 cup dried apricots
* 1/2 cup chopped pecans


In a large saucepan combine the vinegar, sugar, curry, ginger, cloves, allspice, cinnamon and water. Bring the liquid to a boil, stirring until the sugar is dissolved, about 3 minutes. Add the lemon rind and lemon sections, the orange rind and orange sections and the apple, reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
Add 3 cups of the cranberries, the raisins and the apricots and simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 35 minutes. Add another 2 cups of the cranberries and simmer for 10 more minutes. Add the remaining cup of cranberries and the pecans and simmer the mixture for 15 minutes longer.
Remove the saucepan from the heat, pour the chutney into a bowl and let cool. Chill overnight or up to 2 weeks.

6 cups

Sausage Stuffing With Caramelized Onions

30 minutes


* 2 10-ounce packages breakfast sausage
* 1 fennel bulb, trimmed and in 1/2-inch dice (1 cup)
* 1 carrot in 1/4-inch dice ( 1/2 cup)
* 1 celery stalk in 1/4-inch dice ( 1/2 cup)
* 1 leek, white part only, washed and finely chopped ( 1/2 cup)
* 1 small onion, minced ( 1/2 cup)
* 2 cloves garlic, minced (2 teaspoons)
* Salt and freshly ground black pepper
* 2 tablespoons fennel seeds
* 6 large eggs, lightly beaten
* 2 to 3 cups chicken broth
* 2 pounds crusty French bread, cubed and dried overnight
* 1 cup golden raisins, soaked in hot water and drained
* 1 tablespoon chopped thyme
* 1 tablespoon chopped sage


Place sausage in a large skillet over medium heat and cook until browned, turning frequently, 10 minutes. Remove pan from heat and transfer sausage to paper-towel-lined plate. Reserve fat in pan. Cool sausage, then chop. Return pan to stove. Add fennel, carrot, celery, leek, onion and garlic, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sauté over medium heat, stirring frequently, until vegetables are lightly caramelized, about 10 minutes.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place fennel seeds in a small skillet and toast over medium heat, tossing frequently, until fragrant and lightly colored, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk eggs and 2 cups chicken broth together. Add bread and stir until coated evenly. Add sausage, sautéed vegetables, raisins, thyme, sage and fennel seeds. If bread cubes seem dry, add additional chicken broth. Add salt and pepper to taste. Turn into a 3-quart gratin dish and cover with foil. Bake 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake until stuffing is brown, about 10 minutes more.

6 - 8 servings

Roasted Maple-Glazed Baby Carrots With Dried Grapes

Adapted from Chris Schlesinger of East Coast Grill, Cambridge, Mass.

2 hours 20 minutes


* 1 pound small green seedless grapes, washed and plucked (3 cups)
* Vegetable spray
* 2 pounds baby carrots
* 2 tablespoons butter
* 1 tablespoon chopped sage
* 2 tablespoons maple syrup
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
* 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel
* 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Heat oven to 250 degrees. Put grapes in a bowl and spray lightly with vegetable oil. Toss to coat. Turn grapes into a 12-inch non-stick ovenproof skillet. Dry in oven, tossing grapes every 20 minutes or so, until skin shrivels and grapes are tawny and lightly caramelized, 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Remove from oven and set aside. (Grapes can be made a day ahead and refrigerated.)
Place carrots on paper towel-lined pan to dry. Increase oven temperature to 500 degrees. Place broiler pan or heavy roasting pan in oven. In small saucepan over low heat, melt butter and cook until golden brown. Add sage leaves, maple syrup and dried grapes. Swirl to combine and turn off heat, but leave on burner to keep warm.
Place carrots, olive oil and salt in a bowl and toss, rubbing oil and salt into carrots. Turn carrots onto hot pan in oven in a single layer. Roast, shaking pan occasionally, until carrots have begun to color and are almost tender, about 10 minutes.
Pour grape mixture over carrots and toss with heat-proof spatula to coat. Roast until glaze begins to set and carrots are tender and spotty-brown, about 5 minutes more. Remove carrots from oven and sprinkle with lemon peel and pepper. Transfer to warm bowl and serve immediately.

6 - 8 servings

Mini Ham and Cheese Quiches

These appetizer quiches, filled with savory ham and cheddar cheese, will be a surefire hit at your next party. Using Crescent dinner roll dough for the crusts makes these finger food delights quick and easy to prepare.


* 3 eggs, beaten
* 1/4 pound deli ham, finely chopped
* 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
* Salt and pepper
* 1 can (8 ounces) refrigerated Crescent dinner rolls
* 1 tablespoon parsley

Cooking Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
2. In a medium bowl, combine, eggs, cheese, ham, parsley, salt and pepper.
3. Unroll dough and separate into 4 rectangles. Firmly press on the perforations to seal.
4. Cut each of the rectangles into 6 squares. Press each square into the bottom and up the side of 24 un-greased mini muffin pan.
5. Pour about 1 tablespoon of the egg mixture into each cup and bake for approximately 15-20 minutes or until egg mixture is set and quiches are golden.

Preparation Time:

10 minutes

Cooking Time:

15 minutes



Eggplant Casserole

* 1 medium eggplant
* salt
* 1 tablespoon grated onions
* 1/2 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese
* 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
* 2 eggs, beaten
* cracker crumbs, for topping

Peel eggplant and cut in chunks. Soak in salted water 15 minutes. Rinse in cold water. Cook eggplant cubes in a very small amount of water about 3-5 minutes or until tender. Add 1 teaspoon salt, onion, pepper and cheese. Pour beaten eggs over all and top with cracker crumbs. Bake 30-40 minutes at 350°.

The Angry Chef’s Garlicky Lemon-Pepper Chicken

6 chicken breasts (about 4 1/2 lbs)
2 cups flour
1 lemon, juice and peel
1 clove elephant garlic
3 1/2 Tb's. prepared minced garlic
pure olive oil
onion powder
garlic salt
white pepper
black pepper
dried oregano
dried parsley
powdered lemon peel

Serves 6-8 as a main course.


1 (9 inch) baked pie shell
1 1/2 c. powdered sugar
1/2 c. butter
1 (1 oz.) sq. unsweetened chocolate
1/2 c. peanut butter
1 heaping tbsp. flour
1 heaping tbsp. cornstarch
1/2 c. sugar
2 1/2 c. milk
3 egg yolks
3 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp. vanilla

Stir 1 cup powdered sugar into 1/2 cup butter and the melted chocolate. Beat until smooth. Spread over pie crust. Mix 1/2 cup powdered sugar with peanut butter and spread over chocolate layer. Mix flour, cornstarch, and sugar. Add a little milk and egg yolks; stir well. Add remaining milk and butter. Cook over medium heat, stirring until thick and bubbly. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Cool slightly and pour over peanut butter layer. Refrigerate and top with whipped cream.

Beef Casserole Supreme

* 1 to 1 1/2 pounds ground beef
* 1 rib celery, finely chopped
* 1 small onion, finely chopped
* 1 small green bell pepper, chopped
* 1 can (14.5 oz) tomatoes, chopped, undrained
* 1 jar (16 ounces) spaghetti sauce
* 2 cloves garlic, minced
* 1 jar (4 ounces) mushrooms, undrained
* 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
* 1 teaspoons Italian seasoning
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 8 ounces medium egg noodles
* 8 ounces sour cream, light
* 4 ounces cream cheese, cubed
* 1 bunch (6 to 8) green onions, with tops, chopped

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Brown ground beef, celery, onion, and green pepper. Drain off excess fat. Add tomatoes, sauce, garlic, mushrooms, pepper, Italian seasoning, and salt. Stir well and simmer for about 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Prepare noodles according to package directions. Drain. Stir in sour cream, cream cheese, and green onions; stir well. Spoon half the noodle mixture into a greased, oblong baking dish. Top with half the meat mixture. Repeat layers. Cover and bake at 350° for about 50 to 60 minutes, or until hot and bubbly.
Serves 6 to 8.

Fruit Pizza Pie

1 package yellow cake mix
1/4 cup water
2 eggs
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup chopped nuts
1 envelope dessert topping mix to make 1 cup whipped
10 oz. canned vanilla pudding
2 baskets strawberries
1 can pineapple rings, well drained
1 cup apricot preserves
4 tablespoons water, brandy or 1 cup apple jelly


Combine half of the cake mix, water, eggs, butter and brown sugar and mix thoroughly. Blend in the remaining cake mix. Fold in the nuts.

Line 2 12-inch pizza pans with wax paper. Pour half of the batter into each pan. Bake at 350 degrees F for 15-20 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool, and carefully remove from the pans onto a serving plate.

Freeze one pizza or double the amount of fruit to make 2 pizzas.

Prepare the whipped topping mix as directed on the packaging or use the vanilla pudding. Spread on cooled cake.

Wash, hull and lightly sugar strawberries. Reserve choicest berries for the center of the pizza. Arrange fruit in circles on pizza.

To make glaze, heat preserves with the water or brandy until melted. Remove from heat. Strain and cool. Brush on fruit and refrigerated until ready to serve.

Pepper Sausage Pizza

* 15 Servings
* Prep: 30 min. Bake: 20 min.


* 3 to 4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
* 1 package (1/4 ounce) quick-rise yeast
* 1 teaspoon sugar
* 1 cup warm water (120° to 130°)
* 1/4 cup Crisco® Pure Olive Oil
* 2 teaspoons salt
* 1 teaspoon dried basil
* 1/2 teaspoon pepper
* 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
* 3 cups torn fresh spinach
* 1 can (15 ounces) pizza sauce
* 4 cups (16 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
* 1/2 pound bulk pork sausage, cooked and drained
* 1 medium onion, chopped
* 1/2 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
* 1/2 medium sweet yellow pepper, chopped
* 1-1/2 teaspoons pizza seasoning or Italian seasoning
* 3 tablespoons minced fresh basil, optional


* In a bowl, combine 1 cup flour, yeast and sugar. Add water; beat until smooth. Add the oil, salt, dried basil, pepper, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese and 2 cups flour; beat until blended. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Cover and let rest for 5 minutes.
* Meanwhile, place spinach in a microwave-safe bowl; cover and microwave on high for 30 seconds or just until wilted. Uncover and set aside.
* Press dough into a greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan. Spread with pizza sauce; sprinkle with 2-1/2 cups mozzarella cheese, sausage, onion, spinach, mushrooms and yellow pepper. Top with
* remaining Parmesan and mozzarella cheeses. Sprinkle with pizza seasoning. Bake at 450° for 20 minutes or until crust is golden brown. Sprinkle with fresh basil if desired. Cut into squares. Yield: 15 slices.

Spaghetti Pie

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Yield: Serves: 6

* 6 oz. spaghetti, cooked
* 2 Tbsp. olive oil
* 2 eggs, well beaten
* 3/4 cup (3 oz.) Sargento Artisan Blends™ Shredded Parmesan Cheese, divided
* 1 cup Sargento® Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese
* 1 cup pasta sauce
* 1/2 cup (2 oz.) Sargento Chef Style Shredded Mozzarella Cheese


1. Toss spaghetti with olive oil in large bowl. Stir in eggs and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese. Pour spaghetti mixture into greased 10-inch pie plate; form into a crust.
2. Spoon Ricotta cheese over spaghetti crust. Top with pasta sauce. Bake in preheated 350°F oven 25 minutes. Top with Mozzarella cheese. Bake 5 minutes more or until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese. Cool 10 minutes before cutting.

Pizza Pie Pizzazz

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Yield: Serves: 8


* 2 tsp. olive oil
* 1-1/2 lbs. bulk Italian sausage
* 4 oz. pepperoni slices, chopped
* 1 Tbsp. minced fresh garlic
* 3 cups (24 oz.) Italian sausage pasta sauce
* 1 pkg (8 oz.) sliced mushrooms
* 2 Tbsp. cornmeal, divided
* 2 cups (8 oz.) Sargento® Artisan Blends™ Shredded Mozzarella & Provolone Cheese, divided
* 2 (9-inch) pie crusts


1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
2. In a heavy skillet, heat oil and brown sausage, pepperoni and garlic, about 10 minutes. Remove excess liquid from skillet. Add pasta sauce and mushrooms. Simmer 15 minutes on low heat. Fold in 1 tablespoon cornmeal and 1-1/2 cups cheese; set aside to cool slightly.
3. Place one crust in a deep 9-inch pie plate. Sprinkle remaining cornmeal on bottom of crust and top with remaining cheese. Add meat mixture and cover with the remaining pie crust. Seal and flute edges of crust. Make 6 small slits in top crust .
4. Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Cranberry Blueberry Mix Pie


* ¼ cup Cornstarch
* ½ gallon Vanilla Ice-cream
* ½ tsp Ground Nutmeg
* 1 Ready made Pie Crust
* 1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
* 1½ cups Sugar
* 12 oz Fresh Cranberries
* 12 oz Frozen Unsweetened Blueberries
* 2 tbsp Heavy Cream
* 6 tbsp Orange Juice


* Preheat the oven to 375° F. Warm the pie crust in it.
* Put cranberries, blueberries, cinnamon, sugar and nutmeg in a large bowl and mix all the ingredients well.
* Pour the orange juice in a large saucepan and heat it. Slowly add cornstarch to the juice, while stirring it continuously, to dissolve it.

* Add the berry mix to the saucepan and adjust the heat to medium-high.
* Let the mixture boil and then let it cook for 5 to 10 minutes, while stirring it constantly.
* When the sauce thickens, remove it from heat and let it cool down.

* When the berry filling cools completely, use a spoon to put it inside the pie crust carefully.
* Sprinkle about one tablespoon of sugar on the top of the pie.

* Bake the pie for about an hour or until the crust is brown and the berry filling starts bubbling.
* Be vigilant while baking the pie, for the crust of over-baked pies can crack open and the berry can bubble over.
* Let the pie cool on the rack and then refrigerate it, until one hour before serving.
* Warm the pie a bit before serving. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top of each slice.

Grilled Lemon Potatoes Recipe

The grilled lemon potatoes recipe is a light dish as well as filling if taken along with salads and/or desserts. It is easy to make and anyone can learn how to make grilled lemon potatoes. Given here is the recipe of grilled lemon potatoes.


* 2 auburn potatoes (cut lengthwise)
* 2 tablespoons lemon juice
* 1/8-teaspoon garlic powder
* 1/2-cup low fat margarine (melted)
* 1 1/2 teaspoons reduced sodium lemon pepper

How to Make

* Make deep cuts on the sides of potatoes using a sharp knife.
* Take a foil to cover the skin side.
* Mix rest of the ingredients.
* Brush the sides of the potatoes with margarine mixture.
* Grill the potatoes on medium heat for 40 minutes, greasing with margarine mixture every 10 minutes.
* Rotate the potatoes and grill for 10 more minutes while basting with remaining margarine mixture.
* Serve hot on a plate or bowl.

Avocado Pizza Pie

The avocado pizza pie is an ideal recipe to be made on Valentine's Day for your beloved. The recipe of avocado pizza pie is given below. So go ahead and learn how to make avocado pizza pie.


* 2 10 oz. packages frozen pizza dough
* 12 ounces low fat mozzarella cheese, grated
* 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
* 1 avocado, peeled, sliced
* 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
* 1/2 cup diced green bell peppers
* 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
* 2 pounds tomatoes
* 6 tablespoons canned tomato sauce
* Salt and Pepper (according to taste)

How to Make

* Follow the directions as given on the packet of pizza dough.
* Place all ingredients on pizza, except the avocados.
* Bake in a preheated oven at 325F. for approximately 20 minutes.
* Layer it with avocados and serve. Sprinkle salt and pepper on top according to your taste

Cornbread Turkey Pot Pie

You can use 2 cups leftover cooked turkey in this recipe; add to skillet along with gravy.

* 1 Tbsp. olive oil
* 1 lb. boneless, skinless turkey breast, cut into 1/2" pieces
* 1 onion, chopped
* 3 cloves garlic, minced
* 12 oz. jar turkey gravy
* 16 oz. pkg. frozen mixed vegetables, thawed and drained
* 1/2 cup sour cream
* 1/2 tsp. dried thyme leaves
* 6 oz. pkg. corn bread mix
* 1/3 cup milk
* 2 Tbsp. butter, melted
* 1 egg
* 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Heat olive oil in large skillet; add turkey, onion and garlic and cook and stir over medium heat for about 5 minutes until turkey is cooked.

Add jar of gravy and bring to a boil. Cover skillet and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add vegetables, thyme, and sour cream to skillet and heat, stirring occasionally, for 3-4 minutes.

In medium bowl, combine corn bread mix, milk, melted butter, egg, and cheese until just combined.

Place turkey mixture into 13x9" glass baking dish. Drop cornbread mixture by spoonfuls over turkey mixture. Bake at 400 degrees F for 20-25 minutes until corn bread topping is deep golden brown and turkey mixture is bubbling. 4 servings

Wild Rice Quiche

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes

* 1 9" unbaked pie shell
* 1 Tbsp. olive oil
* 1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
* 1 onion, finely chopped
* 1 cup cooked wild rice, drained if necessary
* 4 eggs
* 1 cup sour cream
* 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
* 1/8 tsp. pepper
* 2 cups shredded Havarti or Swiss cheese
* 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Prebake the pie shell at 400 degrees for 5-8 minutes or just until crust begins to brown. Set aside while preparing filling.

In medium skillet, cook red bell pepper and onion in olive oil until tender. Add cooked and drained wild rice to skillet and set aside.

Combine eggs, sour cream, mustard and pepper in medium bowl and beat well with wire whisk until blended.

Sprinkle half of the Havarti cheese over the pie crust, then spread wild rice mixture over cheese. Pour egg mixture over and sprinkle with remaining Havarti cheese. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Bake pie at 400 degrees F for 30-35 minutes or until filling is puffed, set and golden brown around the edges. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting. 6 servings

Pizza Quiche

This rich quiche is packed full of pizza ingredients! As with any pizza recipe, you could substitute Canadian bacon or cooked ground beef for the pepperoni, and use any kind of cheese you like.

1 9" pie crust
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
3/4 cup sliced pepperoni pieces
4 oz. jar sliced mushrooms, well drained
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup whole milk
3 eggs
1 tsp. dried Italian seasoning

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Sprinkle cheeses in bottom of pie crust. Top with pepperoni and mushrooms. In heavy skillet, cook onion and garlic in olive oil until crisp tender. Spoon over mushrooms in pie crust.

Beat together milk, eggs, Italian seasoning and garlic in medium bowl until well blended and pour over mushrooms.

Bake pie at 400 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until knife inserted near center of pie comes out clean. Let stand for 15 minutes before cutting. Serves 6

Cowboy Beef and Black Bean Chili

Total Recipe Time: 2 hours
Makes 8 servings

2 pounds ground beef (95% lean)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1-1/2 cups chopped onions
2 tablespoons minced garlic
2 medium yellow bell peppers, chopped
1 large jalapeno pepper, seeded, finely chopped
1/4 cup chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves, crushed
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves, crushed
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 can (28 ounces) crushed canned tomatoes, undrained
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) chili-seasoned or zesty-style diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can (14 ounces) ready-to-serve beef broth
12 ounces dark beer
1/3 cup tomato paste
1 tablespoon honey
2 cans (15 ounces each) black beans, rinsed, drained Chopped fresh cilantro


1. Brown ground beef in stockpot over medium heat 8 to10 minutes or until beef is no longer pink, breaking up into 3/4-inch crumbles. Remove from stockpot with slotted spoon. Set aside. Pour off drippings.
2. Heat oil in same stockpot over medium heat until hot. Add onions and garlic; cook and stir 3 to 5 minutes or until onions are tender. Add bell peppers and jalapeño; cook and stir 4 to 5 minutes or until peppers are tender.
3. Return beef crumbles to stockpot. Add chili powder, cumin, oregano, thyme and red pepper; cook and stir for 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in crushed tomatoes, diced tomatoes, broth, beer, tomato paste and honey; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 45 minutes. Uncover stockpot; continue simmering 30 minutes or until thickened to desired consistency, stirring occasionally. Stir in beans; cook 5 to 10 minutes or until beans are heated through. Season with salt and black pepper, as desired. Garnish with cilantro, if desired.

Easy Slow Cooker Tuscan Beef Stew

This easy-to-prepare stew adds all ingredients to the slow cooker at one time, eliminating the step of browning the bee

Makes 8 (1-cup) servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours on LOW or 4 hours on HIGH

1 tablespoon McCormick® Mixed Pickling Spice

2 pounds beef stew meat, trimmed and cut into 1 to 1 1/2-inch cubes

1 medium onion, cut into medium wedges

4 carrots, cut into 1/2-inch slices

1 teaspoon McCormick® Rosemary Leaves, crushed

1 teaspoon McCormick® Garlic Powder

2 beef bouillon cubes

2 cans (14 1/2 ounces each) diced tomatoes, undrained

1 cup dry red wine

1 tablespoon flour

8 slices day-old Italian bread, toasted

1. Place the pickling spice in the center of a piece of cheesecloth or coffee filter. Tie tightly with a long piece of string.

2. Place beef cubes, onion, carrot, crushed rosemary, garlic powder and bouillon cubes to slow cooker. Stir in tomatoes and wine. Add pickling spice bundle; cover.

3. Cook 8 hours on LOW or 4 hours on HIGH. Remove pickling spice bundle.

4. Thicken stew by mixing flour with 1 tablespoon water in medium bowl until smooth. Stir in several tablespoons hot liquid from stew, then stir flour mixture into stew. Cook and stir 2 to 3 minutes or until stew thickens slightly. To serve, place 1 slice bread in each bowl. Spoon stew over bread.

Buffalo Chicken Potato Salad

This super side marries creamy potato salad with the mild heat of Buffalo wings - complete with the trimmings - celery and blue cheese.

Makes 10 servings.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

2 pounds small red potatoes, quartered

1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons cider vinegar

1/2 teaspoon McCormick® Celery Seed

1/2 teaspoon McCormick® Garlic Powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon McCormick® Red Pepper, Ground

2 cups cubed cooked chicken

1 cup chopped celery

1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese

1. Bring potatoes to boil in lightly salted water in large saucepot. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes or until fork-tender. Drain well. Cool slightly.

2. Mix mayonnaise, vinegar, celery seed, garlic powder, salt and pepper in large bowl until well blended. Add potatoes, chicken and celery; toss gently to coat.

3. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve. Sprinkle with cheese before serving.

Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Bottom Cheesecake

Brownie Crust:

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup peanut butter chips
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1-1/4 cups sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract (I used Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla)
2 eggs
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Cheesecake Filling:

2 lbs cream cheese, softened
5 eggs, at room temperature
1-1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
1 cup smooth peanut butter (not natural-style)
1/2 cups whipping cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
6 peanut butter cups, cut into quarters

(this made too much batter for me. Not sure how to cut down the portions. I was able to make an extra very slim 7" cheesecake with the leftover batter. So less than half was left over...)


6 peanut butter cups, cut carefully in half
1/2 cup whipping cream
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup peanut butter chips

(this makes a lot more than you'll need for decorative purposes. I plan on using the extra to serve with the individual slices)

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease 9-inch springform pan with butter.

2. Stir together butter, sugar and vanilla in large bowl with spoon or wire whisk. Add eggs; stir until well blended. Stir in flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; blend well. Spread in prepared pan.

3. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until brownie begins to pull away from side of pan. Meanwhile make cheesecake layer (see below).

4. Immediately after removing brownie from oven, sprinkle milk chocolate chips, peanut butter chips and peanut butter cups over brownie surface. Spoon cheesecake mixture over chips. Turn down oven 325°.

This is just the crust section

Cheesecake Filling:

5. Beat cream cheese in bowl of electric mixer until smooth.

6. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

7. Add sugar, peanut butter and cream; mix until smooth.

8. Stir in vanilla.

9. Pour filling into prepared crust.

[I had extra batter that I put in a smaller springform pan at this point]

10. Double-wrap springform pan with aluminum foil to prevent water seeping in.

11. Place springform pan into a larger baking pan.

12. Pour hot water into the larger pan so that the water comes 1 inch up the sides of the springform pan.

13. Bake at 325 degrees 1-1/2 hours, or until firm and lightly browned.

14. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack for one hour.

15. Run a knife along the edge of the cake to loosen it from the pan somewhat.

16. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours before decorating. I tend to make cheesecakes a day ahead to let things set.

Cheesecake tip: to get the cake off the bottom of the springform pan, because most crusts have butter in them, you just need to heat up the bottom of the pan a bit and the cake should come off easily. I remove the sides, then hold the pan over a burner on my stove - set to LOW - for about 15 or so seconds. Whatever you can handle. Then run a long cake spatula under the cake and it should slip easily off the pan. Just be careful - the bottom of the cake is now very slippery.

17. Remove cake from pan and put on a pretty plate.

18. Bring whipping cream to boil in a small saucepan.

19. Remove from heat and add semi-sweet and peanut butter chips. Stir, stir, stir until melted and smooth.

20. Drizzle over cake and then add peanut butter cup halves around the edge of the cake.

Brownie Swirl Cheesecake

Brownie Crust:
1, 20 oz package or 1 pouch Ghirardelli Double Chocolate
Brownie Mix
1 egg
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
16 oz (2 cups) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sour cream
2 eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup water

Preheat oven to 325°F. For Brownie Crust: In medium bowl, stir together brownie mix, egg, water and oil until moistened (about 40 strokes). Reserve 3/4 cup brownie batter for cheesecake. Spoon remaining brownie batter into lightly greased, 9-inch springform pan. Bake 10-12 minutes. For Cheesecake: Place cream cheese and sour cream in medium bowl. Using an electric mixer, mix on low speed 2 minutes or until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Add sugar and vanilla and continue to mix until smooth. Spoon cream cheese mixture evenly over brownie crust. Add 1/4 cup water to reserved brownie batter and mix well. Drop spoonfuls of brownie batter randomly over cream cheese mixture. Swirl with tip of knife to create marbled effect. Bake 55-60 minutes or until filling is set. Cool thoroughly. Store in the refrigerator.
Makes 12 servings.

Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Icing


Makes 14 servings
5 1/2 ounces (1 1/3 cups) whole wheat flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
4 fluid ounces (1/2 cup) vegetable oil
8 ounces (1 1/8 cups) sugar
2 eggs
5 ounces (about 1 cup) diced pineapple
1 pound (about 4 cups) grated carrots
3 ounces (1/2 cup) raisins
2 egg whites
Vegetable oil spray, as needed
1 ounce (1/4 cup) all-purpose flour

Cream Cheese Frosting
12 ounces nonfat cream cheese, soft
3 ounces (3/4 to 1 cup depending on preferred sweetness) powdered sugar, sifted
2 tsp. vanilla extract

Tame your sweet tooth and keep your waistline in check with our light carrot cake with cream cheese icing. Just like the regular version featuring full fat and calories, this one satisfies with intense flavor and incredible moistness.


Combine the whole wheat flour, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon.

Beat together the oil, sugar, and whole eggs until smooth.

Add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture and blend well. Stir in the pineapple, carrots, and raisins.

Whip the egg whites to a medium peak and fold into the carrot batter.

Lay parchment, cut to fit, in a 10-inch cake pan. Grease the pan with the oil spray and dust with the all-purpose flour. Pour the batter into the pan and bake in a 350 degrees F preheated oven until the cake springs back when lightly pressed, about 40 minutes. Cool the cake in the pan for 10 minutes before unmolding onto a rack to cool completely.

To prepare the frosting, combine the frosting ingredients in a food processor, blender, or mixer and mix until smooth. Evenly spread the frosting on the cake after it has completely cooled.

Lemon Tart

Makes one 9-inch tart (about 8 to 12 servings)

Pâte sucrée
1 cup unsalted butter
½ cup sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1¾ cups all-purpose flour

Lemon filling
9 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1¾ cups sugar
1¼ cups heavy cream
Zest and juice of 4 lemons
This tart is best made the day before it will be served. It’s delicious with crème fraîche.


Prepare the pâte sucrée: Cream the butter and sugar together in a mixer, using the beater attachment, 5 to 10 minutes or until pale in color. Add the egg and continue beating for 5 more minutes; scrape down the sides of the bowl a couple of times. Switch to the slowest speed on the mixer and fold in the flour; mix until a soft paste is formed (do not overmix). Remove from the bowl and divide the dough in half. Shape both pieces of dough into flat, 1-inch-thick slabs. Wrap both slabs individually in parchment paper and plastic wrap. Store the dough in the refrigerator for up to a week or in the freezer for 3 months. Note: The dough must rest in the fridge for at least 1 hour before using.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Roll out one slab of pâte sucrée to line a deep 9-inch quiche pan, ideally with a removable bottom (reserve the other slab of dough for another use). Prick the dough evenly over the bottom and sides with the tines of a fork. Line with a round of parchment paper and fill with weights (pie weights or uncooked rice or beans). Bake just until the edges of the dough appear dry, but have not taken on any color. Remove the weights and paper. Cool to room temperature. Turn the oven down to 300°F.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs, egg yolks, and sugar together with a whisk until thoroughly mixed, about 3 minutes. In a separate medium size bowl, lightly beat the cream until a light froth forms on the surface, about 30 seconds. Combine the cream, egg mixture, lemon zest, and lemon juice and mix all together in the large bowl. The mix will curdle when you add the lemon; continue to whisk until the curdle disappears. Put the custard in the refrigerator and chill.

Pour the custard through a fine-mesh strainer into the pastry crust. Bake the tart in the oven until the custard is set, 30 or 40 minutes.

Remove the tart from the oven and allow to cool before serving.

Key Lime Pie

Serves 10

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 12 crackers)
1/4 cup sugar
4 tablespoons butter, melted

4 egg yolks
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup Key lime juice
Grated zest of 2 limes (Key or Persian)

1/2 cup water
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
4 egg whites

Cook with the proper tools. Use the Balloon Whisk and the Candy Thermometer to create Key Lime Pie.

The following recipe for Key lime pie incorporates Italian meringue as a topping. When making a Key lime pie, if fresh Key limes are unavailable, bottled juice is acceptable. Avoid using regular limes, which are also known as Persian limes. Persian limes' flavor is different and their juice does not work well in Key lime pie recipes.


To make the crust:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine pie crust ingredients and mix thoroughly. Carefully press mixture into bottom and sides of a 9-inch pie plate. Form an attractive border around edges. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes, or until sides begin to lightly brown. Let cool. Leave oven at the same temperature.

To make the filling:
In a large bowl, whisk together egg yolks and sweetened condensed milk. Slowly whisk in lime juice and beat until smooth. Stir in zest, then carefully pour pie filling into baked crust and bake for 12 minutes, or until filling is just set. Remove from oven.

To make the meringue:
You will need a candy thermometer to check the temperature of the sugar syrup.

Combine water and 1 cup of sugar in a small saucepan. Stir lightly. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until thermometer registers 240 F degrees and creates a syrup. Remove from heat and cover pan with a lid.

While the sugar is cooking, beat egg whites and 2 tablespoons sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer until soft peaks form (forms a peak when you pull up the whip). Continue beating eggs on low speed until sugar is correct temperature.

When sugar reaches 240 F degrees, beat egg whites on high speed until stiff peaks form (higher and stiffer than soft peaks). Reduce speed to low and pour hot syrup slowly into whipped whites, letting syrup fall in between the whip and the side of the bowl. Whip until meringue is cool.

Spread meringue over top of pie, or place meringue in a pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip, and pipe meringue onto top of pie. Place pie under broiler in middle of oven, making sure it is not too close to heat. It needs less than a minute under broiler, so wait and watch until meringue begins to brown. You may need to turn pie to allow meringue to brown evenly.

Spiced Almond Brittle

Makes 8 servings

1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons corn syrup
1 tablespoon brandy
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/8 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika (pimentón)
1/4 teaspoon chipotle powder
1/2 cup toasted slivered almonds

Classic almond brittle fuses with Latin flavors in this sweet, salty, and spicy confection. It also makes a wonderful accompaniment to flan.


Line a baking sheet with a non-stick baking liner, such as a Silpat. In a heavy, medium saucepan combine the sugar, corn syrup, brandy, and salt, and stir together with a wooden spoon. Cover the pot and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Uncover the pot and brush down any stray sugar crystals with a wet pastry brush. Turn the heat to high, insert a thermometer, and cook until the mixture is golden brown and has reached 325°F, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and wait until the caramel stops bubbling.

Add the butter and baking powder and stir in until incorporated. Add the spices and almonds and combine well.

Pour the mixture out onto the prepared baking sheet and spread to 1/8-inch thick. Allow to cool thoroughly, then break into pieces. The brittle should be stored in an airtight container with wax paper separating each layer of brittle. This can be stored for up to a week at room temperature in a cool, dry place.

Zucchini Bread

Makes 2 loaves

flour less cooking spray for greasing
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour plus extra for dusting
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 1/2 cups grated unpeeled zucchini
1 cup sugar
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons grated orange zest
1 cup coarsely chopped toasted walnuts or pecans

Zucchini's green, plump, homegrown goodness is an ideal baking ingredient, providing color, moisture, and nutrition. Commonly served as a breakfast pastry or as a simple dessert, zucchini bread makes a scrumptious snack when paired with a glass of cold milk.


Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 8 1/2-inch loaf pans.

Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves into a bowl and set aside. Combine the zucchini, sugar, eggs, oil, and orange zest in a large bowl and mix by hand until evenly blended.

Add the sifted dry ingredients to the zucchini mixture. Stir by hand just until the batter is evenly moistened and blended. Fold in the nuts. Divided the batter between the prepared loaf pans. Bake until the edges are browned and starting to pull away from the pan and the bread springs back when lightly pressed with your fingertip, 50–55 minutes. Remove the loaves from the pans and let cool on wire racks before serving.

Cheddar and Onion Rye Rolls

Makes 20 rolls
1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 cups water, warmed to 110ºF
4 cups bread flour
1 cup medium rye flour, plus more for dusting
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon molasses
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 cups cheddar cheese, large dice
1/2 cup yellow onions, large dice

Serve these rolls slightly warmed to bring out the great taste of cheese and onions. Make a double batch of rolls so that you can tuck some away in the freezer. Then you can just grab one or two on your way out the door to enjoy on your drive or at your desk.


Place the yeast and water in the bowl of a mixer and stir to completely dissolve. Let the yeast proof until foamy, about 5 minutes. Add the bread and rye flours, sugar, molasses, oil, and salt. Mix the ingredients together on low speed using the dough hook just until the dough begins to come together (it will look rather rough), about 4 minutes. Increase the speed to medium-high and mix until the dough is smooth, an additional 2 minutes. Add the cheese and onion and continue to mix on medium speed until the cheese and onions are evenly distributed throughout the dough, about 1 minute.

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead by hand until the cheese and onions are completely worked into the dough. (The dough will feel rather tight.) Gather it into a smooth ball. Place in a lightly greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let the dough rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

Fold the dough gently over on itself in three or four places, turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface, and cut it into 20 equal pieces. Cover the pieces and let them rest until relaxed, about 15 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or grease lightly.

Round each piece of dough into a smooth ball and place in even rows on the prepared baking sheets. Cover and let rise until the dough springs back when lightly touched but does not collapse, 30 minutes.

Make a small slit down the center of each roll with a very sharp paring knife or a razor blade. Dust the tops of the rolls lightly with rye flour, if desired.

Bake until the rolls have a golden brown crust and sound hollow when thumped on the bottom, 15-18 minutes. Cool completely on racks before serving.

Smoked Provolone and Thyme Muffins

Makes 12 muffins
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup grated smoked provolone cheese
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme (or 2 teaspoons dried)
1/2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1 whole egg
2 tablespoons Coleman's dry mustard
1 1/2 cups milk
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Dash Tabasco or to taste

Add variety to your bread basket with these rich and savory muffins. For variations in flavor, you can substitute other cheeses for the smoked provolone, such as smoked mozzarella, aged cheddar, Monterey Jack (plain or peppered), or smoked Gouda. You can also try using other herbs such as chives, basil, oregano, or marjoram to come up with your own signature muffins. These muffins may be made ahead of time, and then refreshed by briefly reheating them in a 250 degrees F oven. They may also be frozen for up to eight weeks. To serve, thaw at room temperature, then reheat in a warm oven.


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray or brush muffin tins lightly with oil or line with muffin papers.

Stir together the flour, cheese, baking powder, thyme, salt, and peppers in a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the egg and dry mustard. Blend well with a fork. Add the milk, butter, and Tabasco and mix just until all ingredients are combined. Do not overmix.

Spoon the batter into the muffin tins, filling them three-quarters full. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the tops spring back when lightly pressed with a fingertip.

Cool the muffins in the tin for about 10 minutes, then turn them out of the pan. Serve while still warm.

Shrimp and Chicken Jambalaya

Andouille sausage is an important part of this jambalaya because it adds a rich, smoky flavor along with plenty of garlic and spice. If Andouille sausage isn't easy to find in your area, substitute other available spicy sausages such as chorizo or linguiça.


Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over high heat until it shimmers. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and then sear in the hot oil, turning as necessary, until golden on all sides, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a warm plate or pan. Add the sausages to the pan and continue to sauté until they are lightly browned on both sides, about 6 minutes. Transfer to the same plate or pan as the chicken and reserve.

Add the onion, bell pepper, celery, garlic, paprika, cayenne, and white pepper to the Dutch oven and cook over medium- low heat, stirring frequently, until the vegetables start to release some of their juices and are beginning to soften, about 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes with their juices and simmer briefly. Add the broth and bay leaf and bring the jambalaya to a simmer. Cover the Dutch oven and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are almost completely tender, 15 minutes.

Return the browned chicken and sausage to the Dutch oven, along with any juices they may have released. Add the basil, thyme, and Tabasco, and return to a simmer over low heat until flavorful, about10 minutes. Add the shrimp to the jambalaya and simmer until the shrimp are cooked all the way through, 5 minutes.

Add the cooked rice and mix well. Serve the jambalaya in heated bowls, topped with the green onion.

Makes 8 servings
3 tbsp canola oil
1 1/2 lb chicken, meat, sliced 1/2-inch thick
Salt as needed
Freshly ground black pepper as needed
1 lb andouille sausage, sliced 1/2-inch thick
2 cups minced yellow onion
2 cups diced green bell pepper
1 1/2 cups diced celery
2 tsp minced garlic
2 tbsp paprika
1/4 tsp ground cayenne
1/4 tsp ground white pepper
2 cups chopped plum tomatoes, peeled and seeded, juice reserved
3 cups chicken broth or as needed
1 bay leaf
1/4 cup basil chiffonade
2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1 tsp Tabasco
30 shrimp, 21 to 25 count, peeled and deveined
4 cups cooked short-grain rice
1 cup sliced scallions, white and green portions

Albuquerque Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Beans and Greens Sauté

Grilled Pork
Makes 6 servings
3 pounds pork tenderloins
Albuquerque Dry Rub, as needed, recipe follows
1 cup pomegranate juice
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
Olive oil, as needed
Beans and Greens Sauté, recipe follows

Dry Rub
Makes 1/2 cup
1 Tbsp coriander seeds (or 2 tsp ground coriander)
1 Tbsp cumin seeds (or 2 tsp ground cumin)
6 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tbsp onion powder
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp dried Mexican oregano
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black peppercorns (or 1 tsp ground pepper)

Beans and Greens Sauté
Makes 6 servings
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 tsp minced garlic
10 cups coarsely chopped beet greens
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 tsp salt, or to taste
1/2 tsp ground black pepper, or to taste
2 cups cooked or canned cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
2 tsp malt vinegar, or to taste

Fire up the grill and prepare for a culinary delight. This juicy dish gets an added kick from the CIA's distinctive Albuquerque Dry Rub. Served with the accompanying Beans and Greens Sauté, it's a flavorful meal that all of your guests will enjoy.


Blot the tenderloins dry with paper towels. Sprinkle all sides of the tenderloins evenly with some of the dry rub. Cover the tenderloins and refrigerate for at least 2 and up to 12 hours.

Preheat a gas grill to medium-high. If you are using a charcoal grill, build a fire and let it burn down until the coals are glowing red with a moderate coating of white ash. Spread the coals in an even bed. Clean the cooking grate.

While the grill is heating, make the mop: Simmer the pomegranate juice in a small saucepan over high heat until it reduces by half. Add the molasses and sherry vinegar, stir well, and bring to a simmer. Remove the mop from the heat and reserve 3 tablespoons to drizzle on the pork after it is cooked.

Brush the tenderloins with a little of the olive oil. Place the tenderloins on the grill and cook until the meat is marked on the first side, about 3 minutes. Turn carefully and brush the upper side of the tenderloins with some of the mop. Turn the tenderloins again when the second side is marked, about 3 minutes, and brush with the mop once again. Grill for another 8 to 9 minutes, covered, then turn once more and brush with the mop again. Finish grilling on the second side, covered, until the pork is cooked, another 8 to 9 minutes.

Remove the tenderloins from the grill. Allow them to rest for 5 to 10 minutes before slicing. Places slices of the tenderloin on heated plates along with a serving of the Beans and Greens Sauté. Drizzle the reserved mop over the pork slices and serve.

Albuquerque Dry Rub

Heat a small sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the coriander and cumin seeds and toast, swirling the pan constantly, until the seeds give off a rich aroma, about 1 minute. Immediately transfer the seeds to a cool plate and allow to cool for a few minutes.

Transfer the seeds to a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder. Add the chili powder, onion and garlic powder, oregano, salt, and pepper. Grind the spices to an even texture. The rub is ready to use now, or you can transfer it to a jar, cover it tightly, and keep it in a cool, dry cupboard or pantry for up to 1 month.

Beans and Greens Sauté

Prepare this savory sauté in a cast iron skillet right on the grill while you grill the pork, or make it ahead of time on the stovetop. If you can't find beet greens, substitute spinach, kale, escarole, collard greens, or turnip greens.

Heat a large sauté pan over the hottest part of the fire or a burner set at medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and heat until the oil shimmers. Add the garlic and move the pan or turn down the heat. Sauté the garlic, stirring frequently, until it is tender and aromatic, about 3 minutes.

Add the beet greens and cook, stirring and tossing briskly with a wooden spoon to coat the greens evenly with the oil. When the greens have cooked down and are a vivid green color, add the broth. Season with 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and a pinch of the pepper.

Bring the broth to a simmer, then add the beans and cook, stirring frequently, until the greens are fully wilted and the dish is very hot. Season to taste with the malt vinegar, salt, and pepper.

Chicken and Red Chili Tamales

Makes 8 servings

1/2 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into one-inch pieces
1 small onion, peeled and left whole
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 dried ancho Chile, stemmed and seeded
1 cup water
1 plum tomato, chopped
1 tablespoon raisins
1 tablespoon sliced almonds, toasted
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 whole cloves
About 20 dried corn husks
3/4 cup masa harina
1 tablespoon vegetable shortening

Chicken and Red Chili Tamales

With a nine thousand-year history, tamales are among the oldest surviving food concepts. Dating back to Pre-Columbian times, tamales were born from the need to transport prepared food, while hunting, at battle, and during times of migration and celebration. Though tamales are now eaten commonly throughout Latin America, they are also an essential feast day food, and are served as a ritual part of celebrations, known as fiestas.


To prepare the filling, combine the chicken, the whole onion, one of the garlic cloves, one-half teaspoon of the salt, and enough water to barely cover the chicken in a saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the chicken is cooked through, 15–20 minutes. Discard the onion. With a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken to a plate. Reserve the broth and set aside.

When the chicken is cool enough to handle, thinly slice or shred, moisten with a little of the reserved broth and set aside.

Heat a large non-stick saucepan over medium-high heat. Swirl in the oil, then add the chopped onion. Cook, stirring frequently, until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Add the remaining garlic cloves and the chile; cook until the garlic is golden and the chile is toasted, about 3 minutes. Add the water, tomato, raising, almonds, cinnamon, cloves and one-quarter teaspoon of the salt; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the flavors are blended, about 15 minutes. Discard the cloves.

Puree the mixture in batches in a food processor or blender; return to the saucepan and add the chicken. Simmer over medium heat until the sauce thickens, about 5 minutes.

Combine the cornhusks and enough hot water to cover in a large bowl. Soak, turning occasionally, until pliable, about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, to prepare the masa dough, with an electric mixer at medium speed, beat the mesa harina, shortening and the remaining one-quarter teaspoon salt until mixture comes together. Add three-quarters of the reserved broth; beat on low speed until light and spongy, about 5 minutes. Cover and refrigerate the dough about 20 minutes.

Drain and rinse the corn husks; keep covered with a damp towel. Cut 2 or 3 of the husks lengthwise into sixteen (one-quarter inch wide) strips, set aside. Flatten a cornhusk on a work surface; spread two tablespoons dough over the husk, leaving a three-quarter inch margin on all sides. Spoon one and one-half tablespoons filling on top of the dough. Roll up lengthwise into a cylinder; secure each end by tying with a strip of husk. Repeat with the remaining husks, dough, and filling making a total of 16 tamales.

Place tamales in a steamer basket; set in a saucepan over one-inch of boiling water. Cover tightly; reduce the heat to low and steam until very hot, about 45 minutes.

Thai Red Curry Chicken

Makes 4 servings
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup diced yellow onion
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon prepared Thai red curry paste
Salt and freshly ground white pepper, to taste
3 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (7–8 ounces each), cut into large cubes
6 small red potatoes, scrubbed, each cut into 6 pieces
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1/2 f cup coconut milk
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon lemon zest
Cornstarch slurry (1 tablespoon cornstarch blended with 1 tablespoon cold water)
1 tablespoon roughly chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon roughly chopped fresh mint
4 cups steamed white rice
1/2 cup green onion, white and green parts, sliced on the bias
1/4 cup toasted shredded dried coconut

One of the most popular international cuisines to emerge in recent years is the cuisine of Thailand. The bold and exotic flavors of Thai cuisine include a number of ingredients that recur throughout its recipes, with one of the most popular being curry paste. Thai-style curry pastes are now available in most supermarkets.


Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until translucent, 5–7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until aromatic, about 2 minutes.

Add the red curry paste, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Stir to coat the onions and garlic evenly with the curry paste. Add the chicken and potatoes to the pan and stir to coat evenly with the curry paste. Add the chicken broth to the pan and bring to a simmer. Simmer until the potatoes are tender, 15–20 minutes.

Transfer the chicken and potatoes to a heated platter and cover to keep warm while completing the sauce.

Add the coconut milk, brown sugar, and lemon zest and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. Taste and season the sauce with salt and pepper. Add the slurry in gradually, until the sauce thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon.

Add the basil and the mint. Add the chicken and the potatoes back to the pan and stir to coat them thoroughly with the sauce.

Serve the curry on heated plates over a bed of steamed rice. Garnish each plate with 2 tablespoons of green onion and 1 tablespoon of toasted coconut.

Nutrition information per fritter:
636 calories, 22.5 g protein, 107 g carbohydrate, 13 g. fat, 40 mg. cholesterol, 422.5 mg. sodium

Huevos Rancheros

Makes 4 servings
four 6-inch corn tortillas
1 cup canned refried beans
2 tablespoons unsalted butter or vegetable oil
8 large eggs
salt and black pepper, freshly ground
1/2 cup grated Monterey Jack
1 avocado
2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
1/2 cup prepared salsa
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped
1 green onion, white and green parts, thinly sliced on the bias

Eggs paired with zesty salsa and warm corn tortillas create a hearty breakfast, brunch or dinner entree. Re-fried beans, avocado, cilantro, green onion and sour cream make up the CIA's interpretation of this dish. To complement the heat of this spicy combination, serve with a side of chilled sliced fruit.


Preheat the broiler.

Heat the tortillas by toasting them one at a time in a dry cast-iron skillet or directly over a gas flame until lightly toasted. Place on a baking sheet, spread each tortilla with 1/4 cup of refried beans, and cover to keep warm.

Working in batches as needed, heat the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat until it is very hot but not smoking and the foaming has subsided. Crack the eggs directly into the hot butter and reduce the heat to medium-low or low. Fry the eggs, shaking the pan occasionally to keep the eggs from sticking. Season the eggs with salt and pepper. Fry to the desired doneness, about 2 minutes for "sunny-side up," 3 minutes for medium yolks, and 4 minutes for hard yolks. Or, once the whites are just opaque, turn the eggs and cook for 30 seconds more for "over easy," 1 minute more for "over medium," or 2 minutes more for "over hard."

Top each tortilla with 2 fried eggs and 2 tablespoons of the grated cheese. Slide the tortillas under the broiler to melt the cheese.

Meanwhile, dice the avocado and toss with the lime juice to prevent the avocado from discoloring.

Top each serving with 2 tablespoons salsa and 2 tablespoons sour cream. Divide the avocado among the tortillas. Garnish each tortilla with 1 tablespoon cilantro and 1 tablespoon green onion and serve.

Nutrition Analysis per serving:
400 calories, 18g protein, 30g carbohydrate, 23g fat, 680mg sodium.

Eggs Benedict

Eggs Benedict
Makes 8 servings
16 slices Canadian bacon
16 poached eggs
8 English muffins, split, toasted, and buttered
2 cups Hollandaise sauce

Poached Eggs
Makes 8 servings
3 quarts water, or as needed
2 teaspoons salt
4 teaspoons distilled white vinegar
16 large eggs

Hollandaise Sauce
Makes 2 cups
1/2 teaspoon cracked peppercorns
1/4 cup white wine or cider vinegar
1/4 cup water, or as needed
4 large eggs, fresh or pasteurized
1 1/2 cups melted or clarified butter
2 teaspoons lemon juice, or as needed
2 teaspoons salt, or as needed
Pinch ground white pepper
Pinch cayenne

When poaching eggs, use the freshest eggs possible. Fresh eggs produce a centered yolk, compact white, and clean edge when cooked. The poaching liquid should be about three inches deep, at a gentle simmer, and it should contain a small amount of salt and vinegar to firm the egg proteins and to prevent the whites from separating.


Heat a sauté pan over medium-low heat. Add the Canadian bacon and sauté on both sides until heated through, about 1–2 minutes on each side.

If eggs have been poached in advance reheat them in simmering water until warmed through and blot on toweling. Top each English muffin half with a slice of Canadian bacon and a poached egg. Spoon warm Hollandaise over each egg and serve.

Poached Eggs
Combine the water, salt, and vinegar in a deep pan and bring to a gentle simmer.

Break each egg into a clean cup, and carefully slide each egg into the poaching water. Cook until the whites are set and opaque, about 3 minutes.

Remove the eggs from the water with a slotted spoon and blot them on absorbent toweling. Serve immediately or store chilled eggs in the refrigerator until needed.

Hollandaise Sauce
Combine the peppercorns and vinegar in a small pan and reduce over medium heat until nearly dry, about 5 minutes. Add the water to the vinegar reduction. Strain this liquid into a stainless steel bowl.

Add the egg yolks to the vinegar reduction and set the bowl over a pot of simmering water. Whisking constantly, cook the egg yolk/vinegar mixture until the yolks triple in volume and fall in ribbons from the whisk. Remove the bowl from the simmering water and place it on a clean kitchen towel to keep the bowl from slipping.

Gradually ladle the warm butter into the egg mixture, whisking constantly. If the sauce becomes too thick and the butter is not blending in easily, add a little water to thin the egg mixture enough to whisk in the remaining butter. Season the Hollandaise with lemon juice, salt, pepper, and cayenne if desired. Serve immediately or keep the sauce warm in a bowl over simmering water.

Nutrition information per 9.5-ounce serving:
730 calories, 29g protein, 36g carbohydrate, 52g fat, 1420mg sodium, 645mg cholesterol, 2 g fiber.

Chocolate Brownie Cheesecake

Makes one 9-inch cake (10 servings)
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1 2/3 cups granulated sugar, divided
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
5 eggs
1 pound cream cheese, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla

With a rich, chocolaty brownie base and smooth, creamy top, the CIA's Chocolate Brownie Cheesecake is a real crowd-pleaser. Swirls of brownie batter provide an impressive garnish while supplying an extra punch of fudgy goodness. For the perfect accompaniment, add a dollop of fresh whipped cream to each slice before serving.


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter and flour a 9-inch springform pan.

Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside.

Combine 1 1/3 cups of the sugar and the melted butter in a bowl and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon or whisk. Add 4 of the eggs, mixing thoroughly. Fold in the dry ingredients, mixing just long enough to make a smooth batter. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, reserving 1/2 cup for marbling the top.

Beat together the remaining 1/3 cup of sugar and the cream cheese with an electric mixer until very smooth and light. Add the vanilla and the remaining egg and mix until evenly combined. Pour this batter into the center of the brownie batter, keeping it away from the sides of the pan.

With a teaspoon, carefully spoon the remaining brownie batter around the top of the cake. Run a butter knife through the pools of brownie batter for a marbled effect.

Bake until the edges of the cheesecake begin to shrink from the sides of the pan and the center is set but still moist, 30 to 40 minutes. If the top is browning too quickly, cover the cake loosely with foil. Cool completely on a rack in the pan and chill for at least 3 hours before cutting into pieces.