Sunday, September 15, 2013

Hi Everyone,

I've moved my blog over to wordpress.

Please follow my posts there.

thank you!


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Here Come the Leftovers!!

Thanksgiving is all about giving thanks, being grateful, family, friends, good memories and EATING fabulous food!

Now I'm not knocking the good old turkey sandwich, that is an American tradition!  But with my leftover duck beckoning me.... I wanted to create a fancy little entree with some of the leftovers.

These are duck and cranberry filled crepes.  I cut off some leftover duck meet, sauteed it with some finely chopped onion (the rest of the onion is in the pot making soup!), some moist dried cranberries, a little leftover duck gravy and some fresh cracked black pepper, and few pinches of dried rosemary.

The filling is pretty simple, just toss together what you have.....

 Crepes are simple too, just a simple egg batter, small non stick pan, patience and wax paper and you're in business!

I filled the crepes with the duck mixture, drizzled on some leftover blackberry cognac sauce, from Thanksgiving, and garnished with thin scallion slivers and toasted pine nuts.  
Awesome and super easy.  Wonderful gourmet meals are only a few steps away!

More leftovers to follow!  Stay tuned!

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Well another Thanksgiving has come and gone. This year I decided to go back to an old family tradition of making a duck. When i was a kid, my dad hated turkey so we always had duck. It's been a few years since I've made duck for Thanksgiving so I decided to make it again this year.

Duck is really a fatty bird, therefore there is a lot of grease after baking it. Several years ago, I did a beer can duck on the barbecue, it was amazing, cooking it outside on the grill is always my preference for cooking just about anything. I'd cook spaghetti on the grill but if it wouldn't slip through the grill.

This year I again opted to put my duck on a beer can. This method not only keeps the duck out of his own fat but steams the duck from the inside with the hot beer in the can. I rubbed the holiday bird with a lot of fresh garlic, herbs, some good quality extra virgin olive oil and a splash of fresh lemon juice. He baked up quite quickly. You want to keep an eye on a duck and cook it only till medium rare. This is a red meat animal after all.

Thanksgiving would not be complete without all the extras, this year I made cranberry pecan cornbread stuffing... i didn't want to stuff the duck, as the beer can was responsible for that function but wanted the stuffing to have that "baked in the duck" flavor. I put a couple of teaspoons of duck drippings into a little casserole to bake the stuffing and of course drizzled it with duck gravy once on my plate.

My mom visited and made these amazing green beans with bacon and brown sugar, they will be a new family tradition.

I hope you and your family have a Happy Holiday Season!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Little Pies, Little Quiches!

So I am now going to delve into the world of mini pie making! For Christmas I received a little mini pie maker, this is just about a dream come true for a single person wanting to indulge in the decadence of pies but who doesn't want to eat a whole pie and usually, other then the more then grateful dogs around, has no one else to share it with.

I began my mini pie journey this morning making a quartet of perfect little quiches, they are filled with homemade maple sausage, sharp cheddar, green onions, and of course the traditional "quiche" filling, scrambled eggs with some milk. It was a fun little project and I rediscovered the joys of rolling out pie crusts again and the importance of that little bit of flour so things don't get too sticky. I'm not sure what my next pie creation will be, I have some nice looking green apples begging to be changed into something fancier then their off the tree unadorned natural state. My journey into mini pie land is just beginning. I think I might have to devote an entire chapter to this topic! Bon Appetit!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Good Morning!  So last night I got a huge dose of inspiration!  I'm so excited to have this new driving force.
I will be posting more pics and more of my ideas daily.  Thank you for reading!  Bon Appetit!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Another recipe created!

I have been writing a cookbook for over 30 years now. Granted, I'm not some old person yet, but this project has been sort of on-going/stagnant for most of my life. My excuse has been my "hook". Every idea I hear about could have been my own, but sadly, I didn't think of it in time. Like "Semi Homemade", or "30 minute meals", what clever ideas.... are there any ideas left? I like to cook fast, from scratch and semi homemade all combined, using what's in season. The seasons inspire me. Luckily I now live in a place where there are four very inspiring seasons. Maybe that was part of my hold up in the past, my geographical location with one year round season.

I decided to start writing a cookbook back when I was a child, tossing together crazy ingredients and coming up with some really bad concoctions... as I got older and learned to cook, mostly due to having many teenage years alone in my petting zoo environment, my creations started to take on real marketable qualities.

I spent summer after summer, not at the beach where my peers were, tanning their hides for the following school year, but in the kitchen of the little apartment that my mom and I shared. My family always had tons of cookbooks, as this preoccupation with food was no stranger to my parents, but there were three books in particular that I read thru and studied like text books. They are from Time Life, one on vegetables, one on poultry and one on meat. I learned to carve and chop and makes sauces... while my mom was at work, I was home trying out a new technique or recipe. My other favorite go-to book was a paperback Betty Crocker book, I still have it, all held together with rubber bands. It had the best cooking charts for meat and you could find anything in that book. That was like my cooking bible.

As I gained knowledge, I started getting more creative too. Pretty soon I was figuring out ways to change recipes to make them better. There is always a better way.

Meanwhile, 30+ years later the whole nation has become as enamored with cooking as I always have been. The TV and bookstores are flooded with cooks and cookbooks.

There being my dilemma, what makes my book unique? It's going to be filled with wonderful recipes I've already created, some unique, some improved classics.

So, I've decided that while I wait for my magical "hook" to appear in a dream or on hairball stain from my lovely cat Lily, I should plug forward and create more recipes to add to an already quite impressive collection.

Last week I created a wonderful grilled corn and black bean salad with a surprise ingredient (no, nothing disgusting from my cat or dog, lol) And today, I created a Chilled Cucumber Soup... while I was creating this one, I discovered I was missing an ingredient that would have made it perfect. You never know what you need while you are at the store, only when you are home creating, my kitchen is probably as well stocked as any great chefs, but darn, I was missing that one thing! So, I will be redoing that recipe again maybe next week.

I still have those books, by the way, and many many more. Besides loving to cook, I'm a cookbook junkie too. My cookbooks have a room of their own!

So, this is my journey to finishing up my decades old dream to write a best selling, must have, cookbook! I figure it's like writing any book, you need to write a little everyday, and it will materialize into something real, right? So I need to create a little something everyday to see what direction my ideas lead me.