Thursday, April 18, 2013

Tagliatelle with Puttanesca Sauce

In Italy, Puttanesca Sauce is known as "Whore's Sauce." This is because in the days of yore, prostitutes were required to cook a meal for their "customers". This was a quick and easy meal for them to make. If you like olives, you will love this sauce, and you don't have to be a whore to eat it!

12 oz. cooked Tagliatelle, or thick Spaghetti
5 large cloves garlic, minced
1 28-oz. can diced tomatoes
1 small can tomato paste
2 TBSP. capers, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and sliced in half
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup fresh basil, chopped
Freshly grated Parmesean or Asiago Cheese

Coat a large saucepan with EVOO and heat on med-high heat until a haze forms. Saute garlic until soft but not brown. Add wine, and cook until reduced to about 1/4 cup. Add remaining ingredients, except for basil and cheese, and simmer for about 10 minutes. Toss cooked pasta in pan with the sauce, and top with basil and cheese to taste.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Shrimp Scampi over Pasta

15 Large deveined shrimp
10 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup dry white wine
 8 ounces spaghetti, cooked

Pour enough EVOO in non-stick pan to cover bottom. Heat over medium-high heat until a haze forms. Saute garlic until it is soft, but not brown. Add shrimp and cook on both sides until pink. Add white wine and reduce slightly, being careful not to overcook the shrimp. Add parsley, stir, and turn off heat. Toss with spaghetti.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Kenny's Fruit Cup

This is a great summer recipe--but be sure and keep the kids away--this is strong! You can use any combination of fruit you like, but be sure and use the watermelon and pineapple.

1 small seedless watermelon, cut up, reserving juice
1 large can pineapple chunks in juice-reserving juice
green and red seedless grapes
1 pint blueberries
1 container strawberries, hulled and quartered
1/2 bottle pineapple rum

Combine all ingredients and allow to "marinate" in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. You can use the "juice" as a cocktail or serve as shots. This is a very refreshing summer treat!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Mushroom hor d' oeuvres with Marsala Wine

25 Phyllo Cups ( 'Atheno's' )
1 wedge Brie cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
approx. 1 1/2 cups finely chopped mushrooms
4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed, stems discarded
1/2 cup Marsala wine

Place phyllo cups on a baking sheet. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place 1 cube of cheese in each cup. Meanwhile, while oven is preheating, swirl EVOO in a skillet, and heat on med-high. Add mushrooms and saute until almost soft, then add the Marsala wine. Sprinkle with Thyme leaves, and some freshly ground pepper. Cook until wine is reduced. Using a teaspoon, spoon mushroom mixture into phyllo cups. Bake in oven until cheese is melted, and serve hot.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Stuffed Artichokes Steamed in White Wine

4 Artichokes
1 cup garlic and herb bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated Romano cheese
1 28oz. can diced tomatoes
1 bottle dry white wine
sliced black olives, if desired

To prepare artichokes, cut off stem. remove tough outer leaves from bottom of artichoke. With a scissor, snip the ends off of the rest of the leaves, and with a sharp knife, cut off top of artichoke. Using a small sharp knife, or a spoon with sharp edges, scoop out fuzzy choke from the center of the artichoke. Pour bottle of wine into a large pot or dutch oven. Place artichokes upright in pot. sprinkle artichokes with bread crumbs and cheese, and if desired stuff with a few sliced black olives. Pour tomatoes over top. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for about 45 minutes to 1 hour or until artichokes are tender when pierced with a fork.

This is a lttle time-consuming, but well worth the effort when ready to eat. Make this recipe in the spring-time when artichokes are fresh and in-season.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Ham with Honey-Bourbon Sauce

1 smoked ham, any size
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup honey
2/3 cup bourbon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves

Poke multiple holes in ham with a toothpick or skewer. Heat all ingredients over medium heat until it comes to a simmer. Remove from heat and allow to thicken slightly. Baste ham with the sauce while cooking in oven. Reserve extra sauce to spoon over ham when serving.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Veal Scallopini with Lemon-Sherry Sauce

This is actually my mother's recipe, to which I embellished a bit, by adding the Sherry and the Shallots. This is definatley one of my restaurant-quality recipies, and would be great for a dinner party!

1/2 lb. Angel Hair Pasta
Olive Oil
I large Shallot, thinly sliced
1 cup flour, seasoned with sea salt and freshly ground mixed peppercorns
4 Veal Scallops, placed between plastic wrap, and pounded slightly
2 lemons-1 thinly sliced and another juiced
1/2 cup dry Sherry
1/2 cup good quality beef stock

Heat enough olive oil in a non-stick skillet, enough to coat, but not too much.
Saute shallots until soft, but not brown.
Dredge veal in seasoned flour. Meanwhile, cook Angel Hair unitl "Al Dente". Sear veal in pan with sauteed shallots until lightly browned on both sides.
Add Sherry, and cook until slightly reduced. Add lemon juice and beef stock, and cook until sauce is
slightly thickened, and veal is cooked through. Place sliced lemons on top of veal scallops for garnish. Serve veal and the juices from the pan over the angel hair pasta.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Cornish Game Hens with Lemon-Wine-Rosemary Marinade

If you like Cornish Hens, this is a great recipe that I know you would love. Hint: Serve it to your female friends--men tend not to like little chickens--not enough MEAT for them!

2 Cornish Hens
1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/3-1/2 cup Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio
2 large shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
Juice of 3 lemons
4 sprigs fresh rosemary-leaves removed and stems discarded
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1/2 tsp sea salt, also freshly ground if possible

Place all ingredients in a ziplock bag and marinate for approximately 24-48 hours. Preheat oven to 375-400 degrees, depending on your oven. ( gas and electric make a huge difference, gas being my preference, of course )!
Place in a roaster or 13x9 inch pan coated with olive oil and bake for about 1-1/2 hours. Let hens rest for 10 minutes before carving. Meat should be moist and falling off of the bone.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Filet Mignon with Peppercorn Merlot Sauce

I made this recipe for my husband on Valentine's Day, and he said it was the best meal I ever made. He clearly stated that he wasn't just saying that just so he could get laid! So here is a Happy Valentine's Meal:

2 TBSPS. butter
3 TBSPS. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 large Shallot, thinly sliced
2 filet mignon's ( ask the butcher to cut it about 2 inches thick
1 TBSB. Peppercorns, placed in a plastic bag and hit with a mallet 3-4 times
3/4 cup GOOD Merlot
Coarse Sea Salt
1/4 cup crumbled Gorgonzola Cheese

Rub a pinch or two of sea salt on both sides of filets,.Heat olive oil and butter over med-high heat, until butter is melted and slightly browned. Add shallots and saute until soft but no brown. Add filets and sear on both sides, and cook to desired doneness. ( I strongly suggest "Still-Mooing" to no more than med.-rare!!!!!!!!!!!!
Use a meat thermometer to check for doneness. ( 140 degrees for rare and 160 degrees for med-rare )
When filets are done, remove from heat and keep warm. Add Merlot to pan, and reduce to 1/2 cup. Add peppercorns and an additional TBSP. butter until melted. Spoon Sauce over filets and sprinkle filets with crumbled Gorgonzola cheese.
Best served with Roasted baby red potatoes with olive oil and fresh rosemary leaves

Monday, January 16, 2012

Beef Pot Roast with Cognac Gravy

1 2lb. pot roast
1 envelope onion mushroom soup mix
2 cups beef broth

Place these 3 ingredients in a large dutch oven and cook on low (250-300 degrees) until meat thermometer reaches 165 degrees.

For gravy:

1/8 cup Cognac
1/4 cup flour
2 cups warm water

When roast is done, remove from dutch oven and place pot with beef juices on the stove over medium heat.
Whisk the above 3 ingredients together until there are no lumps, and add to beef juices.Cook and whisk until gravy is bubbling and thickened. Serve over pot roast with mashed potatoes.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Grilled Mojito Chicken

This is a great summertime dish, but it is also good anytime of the year. This dish pairs really well with a salad of fresh garden tomatoes, fresh mozzerella, and fresh basil with sea salt, pepper, and balsamic vinegar and olive oil.

1 cup fresh mint,chopped
1/2 cup light rum
5-6 large cloves garlic. minced
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
juice of 3 limes
grated zest of 1 lime
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

Whisk together first 9 ingredients and place in a gallon-size ziplock bag. Add chicken thighs and marinate in the fridge for at least 24 hours. Heat grill to medium-high heat and grill chicken thighs on both sides, basting or spooning the marinade over top as it is grilling. My recipe for a Mojito cocktail is as follows:

First, make a sugar syrup by combining equal parts sugar and water, heating in a pot until the sugar dissolves and mixture thickens slightly. Chill.

Tall glass with ice
1 handfull fresh mint, muddled
juice of 1 lime
1&1/2 to 2 jiggers white rum
2-3 Tbsps. sugar syrup, according to your taste.
Club soda

Combine mint, lime juice, rum, and sugar syrup in the glass with ice. Fill rest of glass with club soda and serve.
This is a delightfully refreshing cocktail!

Friday, December 30, 2011

New Year's Day Pork and Sauerkraut

Serves 6-8

8 bone-in center-cut Pork chops
4 lbs.  Sauerkraut
2 bottles Lager beer

In a slow-cooker, layer 4 pork chops, then place 2 pounds of sauerkraut on top. Layer 4 more pork chops, followed by remaining 2 lbs. of sauerkraut. Pour in 2 bottles of beer. Put slow cooker on high for about one hour, or until mixture starts to bubble, then turn heat to low. Simmer for about 6-8 hours, or until meat is falling off the bone. Be careful when serving to pull out any loose bones so that you do not serve a choking hazard to your family and guests!
Serve with mashed potatoes.

Helpful hint: You may want to drain and rinse your sauerkraut first. This helps to get the excess saltiness out of the sauerkraut.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Chrissy's Turkey Gravy

Pan drippings from roasted Turkey
1/8 cup flour or cornstarch
1 cup warm water
1 cup Pinot Grigio

Mix cornstarch with warm water and wine until well combined. Add to pan drippings, and whisk until thick and heated through. This can also, of course, be done with a roast chicken or duck as well.

Eggs McLaura with W.T.'s Bloody Marys

The perfect cure for a hangover:

Eggs McLaura:

1 English muffin, split and lightly toasted
1 Egg, fried
1 slice American Cheese
1 slice Canadian Bacon, fried

Place cheese on toasted english muffin, and melt in oven. Place egg on top, followed by the canadian bacon, and top with other half of english muffin.

W.T.'s Bloody Marys:

Tall Glass
1&1/2 shots of Vodka, or 2 shots if you are REALLY hungover
Ice-fill glass
Tomato Juice
5 Dashes Tobasco Sauce
2 Shakes Worstershire Sauce
1 tsp. Horseradish
Pepper, to taste

Monday, November 7, 2011

Pork Roast with Beer

This recipe is so easy that you could train a monkey to make it. It only requires a few ingredients. I suggest you open your windows while this is baking in the oven, and let the aroma woft out into the neighborhood. Your neighbors will all be jealous, and they'll think you're cooking something really gourmet.

1 Pork Roast, size is optional, depending on how many people you are serving
1 Package Onion Mushroom Soup Mix
1 Bottle of beer, preferably Lager

Preheat the oven to a low temp., about 275-300 degrees. Place the pork roast in a Dutch Oven. Dump the soup mix on and around the pork roast. Dump in the bottle of beer. Place the lid on top of the Dutch oven, and roast very slowly in the low oven. For a 3-pound roast, this takes about 3 hours.
I strongly suggest you make a gravy with the pan juices, thickened with a little cornstarch mixed in warm water to serve with it when the roast is done. Serve with mashed potatoes.
That's it!!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Flamin' Ass Lager Chili

This recipe requires a very specific brand of lager. Up here in "Pennsyltucky", Yuengling Lager is the only way to go. It is simply not the same without it. If you do not get Yuengling in your neck of the woods, well, then, I guess you will have to substitute a different brand. I call this "Flamin' Ass" Chili, because my husband says it burns going in, and it burns going out. If you do not like it that hot, you can adjust the spices accordingly.

1 large onion, diced
2 green bell peppers, seeded and diced
1 Habanero pepper, seeded and diced (you can omit this if it is too hot for you)
1 Jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
2 large garlic cloves, crushed
2 large cans (32 ounces chunky crushed tomatoes)
1 15oz. can dark red kidney beans
1&1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1 Tbsp. Chili Powder
1 tsp. Paprika
1/2 tsp. ground Cayenne pepper
Louisianna Hot Sauce, as many drops as you can tolerate
1 tsp. salt
Vegetable Oil
1 bottle Yuengling Lager

Coat the bottom of a large saucepan with Vegetable oil. Add onion, garlic, and all peppers and saute until soft, but not brown. Brown ground beef with softened vegetables. Add remaining ingredients and simmer over medium heat for about 1 hour, stirring occaisionally. Serve over hot cooked white rice.

Monday, October 31, 2011

White Chocolate Raspberry Chambord Cheesecake


3/4 cup finely crushed chocolate wafer cookie crumbs
1 Tbsp. flour
5 Tbsps. melted butter

Heat oven to 375-degrees. Mix all crust ingredients together and press into the bottom of a greased 9-inch springform pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Turn the oven heat down to 325-degrees.


24 ounces softened cream cheese
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
6 oz. GOOD white chocolate, melted
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 "mini" bottle Chambord ( the little ones that they have at the checkout counter at the Wine and Spirits Shop)

In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle, cream the cream cheese and the sugar together. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the eggs, one at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Mix until the eggs are well incorporated. Add the remaining ingredients and mix until well combined. Pour into the springform pan. Place pan in a water bath, with the water filling halfway up the sides of the pan. Bake at 325 for 1 hour. DO NOT open the oven door. Lower heat to 250-degrees and bake for an additional hour. Turn oven off and let Cheesecake stand in the oven for 1/2 hour. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.


1 pint fresh raspberries
1 jar seedless raspberry preserves or jam
ANOTHER mini bottle of Chambord

Heat jam and Chambord over medium heat in saucepan until it forms a "glaze" consistency. Arrange raspberries over top of cheescake. Carefully brush glaze over raspberries with a pastry brush until top is shiny. Unmold cheesecake from spring pan and serve.

My sister, Tricia, does not like cheesecake, but when she took a taste of this recipe, I converted her into a devout cheesecake lover! Sometimes the addition of a litte booze can "make" a recipe!

Mom's Best Beef Burguonion

This is my mother's tried and true recipe, and my husband's personal favorite. This makes a good hearty winter meal. This tastes best served over couscous, as the couscous sops up the delicious sauce.

3 packages beef stew cubes, dredged in seasoned flour
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 large sweet onions, sliced
1 package sliced mushrooms
5 sprigs fresh Thyme, leaves removed and stems discarded
1 bay leaf
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste, and of course:
1/2 jug Burgundy wine

Heat olive oil in a skillet, and cook stew meat until lightly browned. Add to slow cooker. Add remaining ingredients to slow cooker and cook on low heat for about 6-7 hours, adding more wine if necessary. If you prefer, add a beef boullion cube or two. When ready to serve, you may thicken the sauce with a little cornstarch or arrowroot mixed with warm water. Stir until sauce thickens.

Angel Hair Pasta with White Clam Sauce

I specified the Angel Hair pasta because even though most people serve clam sauce over linguine, I find that the sauce tends to slide right off of the linguine. Angel hair absorbs the sauce, instead of being watery and runny. I don't care for anything that slides around my plate. It reminds me of the Thanksgiving Cranberry Sauce that slides right out of the can, and you have to chase it all over your plate! Try this alternative, and I think you will be convinced.

12 Large garlic cloves, crushed and minced
1 bunch scallions white and light green parts thinly sliced
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 cans minced clams
1 dozen fresh Littleneck clams, washed in cold water
1&1/2 cups Chardonnay
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp. freshly ground black or mixed peppercorns
Coarse Sea Salt to taste
1 cup grated Parmesean Cheese

Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add garlic and scallions and saute until soft but not brown. Add remaining ingredients (except for parsley) and simmer until the fresh clams open up. Discard any clams that do not open up. Add the parsley and stir to combine. Serve over Angel Hair pasta with extra cheese, if desired.
Drink the remaining Chardonnay!

Laura's Marinara Sauce with Merlot

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
10-12 large cloves garlic, minced
1 large sweet onion, diced
2 large cans(32oz.) crushed tomatoes
1 small (6oz.) can tomato paste
1 cup Merlot or other dry red wine
1 Tbsp. dried Basil leaves
1 tsp. Oregano
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 tsps. salt
1/2 cup grated Parmeseano-Reggiano cheese
1 tsp. sugar

Heat olive oil in a large saucepan. Add garlic and onions, and saute until soft, but not brown. Add wine, and reduce by half. Add remaining ingredients, except cheese. Simmer over med-low heat, stirring occaisionally for 2 hours. Add the cheese to the sauce and stir well before serving.
*NOTE: If you add the cheese during the cooking process, it could cause the sauce to stick to the bottom of the pot!

Serve over pasta of your choice. Magnifico!!!