Friday, July 22, 2016

Super Simple Summer Salad


This is great for a summer luncheon or supper because it's light, super simple to put together and it's a tasty combination of flavors. I love to serve it with a good-quality French or Italian bread to use for sopping up the dressing.

½ teaspoon celery seed
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
Several grindings of fresh black pepper
¼ cup white wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup neutral oil

2 pounds cooked shrimp, peeled and deveined

2 medium ripe tomatoes, cut into chunks
1 medium sweet onion, cut into bite-sized pieces
6 generous handfuls of assorted lettuce leaves

     1.      In a large bowl, combine celery seed, salt, sugar, pepper, vinegar, garlic and Worcestershire sauce. Slowly add oils to vinegar mixture and whisk until well blended.
      2.      Toss shrimp with dressing. Transfer shrimp to a  large rimmed serving platter and gently toss with tomatoes and onions.
      3.     Divide lettuce leaves among 6 rimmed serving bowls. Evenly distribute shrimp combination over lettuce leaves. Serve immediately.

6 servings

Friday, July 15, 2016

Classic Deviled Eggs

1 dozen hard-cooked eggs, cut in half, yolks removed
½ teaspoon salt
A few grindings of freshly ground black pepper
½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, or more to taste
1 tablespoon Dijon-style mustard
½ cup mayonnaise

  1. In a large bowl, mash egg yolks. Add salt, and pepper. 
  2. In small bowl combine Worcestershire sauce, mustard, and mayonnaise. Fold the mixture into the egg yolk mixture and mix well. Adjust seasonings and add more mayonnaise if necessary.
  3. Fill egg whites with yolk mixture. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until serving time. Sprinkle with paprika.
Yield: 24 egg halves

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Upside Down Blueberry Muffins Aim To Please

Naturally-Sweetened Blueberry Muffins

1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
½ cup whole wheat flour
½ cup quick cooking oatmeal
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 egg
½ cup milk
½ cup neutral oil
2 teaspoons lemon extract
2 cups fresh blueberries

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. 
  2. Lightly oil a 6-cup capacity muffin tin with cooking spray. 
  3. In a large bowl, combine flour, whole wheat flour, oatmeal, baking powder and salt. 
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg with milk, oil and lemon extract. 
  5. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the milk mixture. Combine with a few swift strokes. 
  6. In a small bowl, mash 1 cup of the blueberries. Add the mashed berries and the remaining blueberries to the batter. Stir gently until combined. Divide batter among the 6 prepared muffin cups. 
  7. Bake for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Allow the muffins to cool for about 5 minutes. Gently remove muffins and place inverted on a plate. Top with butter.

Serve immediately.

6 muffins

Friday, July 1, 2016

Fourth of July Beef Brisket Will Be The Envy of Your Eaters

Melt In Your Mouth Braised Beef Brisket

This brisket recipe promises to be one your guests will not soon forget. The method of covering the meat with lemon slices (a meat tenderizer) and onions and cooking it for several hours at a low temperature turns out the most tender meat. Then it gets flooded with a bold-flavored sauce. So pronounced is the flavor of this entrée, I recommend serving it with unembellished accompaniments like steamed green beans and boiled potatoes. The brisket has to be cooked the day before you plan to serve it.

5 pounds brisket, (weighed after the butcher has trimmed off the fat)
3-4 lemons, thinly sliced, seeds removed
Sliced onions, enough to cover the brisket
2 cups ketchup
2 cups water
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons Liquid Smoke
2 teaspoons packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
A few dashes of Tabasco sauce or hot pepper sauce

            1.    Preheat oven to 250°F.
2.    Place meat in a 15 x 10½-inch (4-liter) baking dish. Cover the brisket with lemon slices. Top the lemon slices with the onion slices. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 6 hours.

3.    When brisket has cooled, drain the essence from the meat and discard lemon     and onion slices. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
4.    In a large bowl, combine ketchup, water, Worcestershire sauce, Liquid Smoke, brown sugar, salt, and Tabasco or hot pepper sauce. Cover and set aside.

5.      Remove the brisket from the refrigerator and allow it to come to room temperature. Thinly slice the meat against the grain. (Check the meat for lines that are running in the same direction; this is the grain. Position the knife perpendicular to the grain and thinly slice the brisket.)
6.      Preheat oven to 350°F.
7.      Pour the sauce over the brisket slices. Cover and bake for 1 hour. Serve immediately.

12 servings

Friday, June 24, 2016

Summer Berry Fun

Summer Berry Cobbler Cake

Now that summer is officially upon us, it's the time when I start making one of our favorites desserts, cobbler cake. This is a great go-to dessert whether it's for family, friends or a potluck. What makes this recipe different than so many other cobblers is after the fruit has been topped with the flour/butter mixture, a cornstarch/water combination is poured over the mixture. This methods makes the topping a little crispy.

Follow the fruit season all summer long and use what's in season. Berry combinations are great. Just about any fruit will work in this recipe. If you're using small berries like blackberries, raspberries and blueberries keep them whole. Pit cherries and keep whole. When using any of the stone fruits like peaches and plums, cut them into bite-sized pieces.

4 cups fresh berries or any combination of summer fruit (see prep note above)
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons butter, cut into chunks
½ cup milk
1 cup cold water
1 tablespoon cornstarch

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.  
  2. Place fruit in a 11 x 7-inch baking dish.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Drop butter chunks into flour mixture. Cut in butter with two knives (making slicing motions) or use your fingertips to incorporate until mixture is somewhat crumbly. 
  4. Add milk and stir until fully combined. Dollop batter over fruit (batter is thick and more like a dough than batter); the final topping as well as baking will evenly distribute the batter.
  5. In a medium bowl, combine water and cornstarch and stir until cornstarch has dissolved. Pour mixture over batter. 
  6. Place baking dish on a rimmed baking sheet and bake cobbler/cake for 45-50 minutes or until lightly browned. Serve warm just as it is or top with whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Yield: 8 servings