Heavenly Haddock

Moist and flavorful. So easy, too. Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Yes, that’s right. In an oval fry pan, drizzle olive oil on the bottom and place one large or two haddock filets on top. 1 1/2 – 2 lbs. Drizzle olive oil on the filet(s), season with salt and pepper, then pats of butter, panko crumbs, and finally thin lemon slices. Bake at 200 degrees for 45 minutes and remove pan from oven. Remove lemon slices.

Put broiler on low. Spoon residual olive oil over panko crumbs. Place under broiler on top rack until panko is brown. Serve with rice and capers or salsa. That’s it. Always perfect.

Lamb Curry

In a small bowl, mix together: 2 tsp. coriander, 1 tsp. turmeric, 2 tsp. garlic powder, 1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger. In another small bowl, mix together: 2 tsp. cayenne, 1 tsp. cardamom, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 4 tsp. sesame seeds, 1/4 tsp. cloves.

Clean and cut 2 leeks into wide slices. In a dutch oven, brown in a little olive oil. Add 2 lbs. boneless leg of lamb cut into 1″ cubes. Brown on all sides. Add 1 onion, coarsely chopped. Add 1 sweet bell pepper, 2-3 jalapeño peppers julienned. Stir together all ingredients. Sprinkle the mix of coriander, turmeric, garlic powder and ginger over the mixture and stir. Add 1 can whole tomatoes. Stir and bring to boil. Cover and turn to low heat.

In a small fry pan, heat 3 tbs. olive oil. Add the cayenne, cardamom, cinnamon, sesame seeds, cloves mix. Stir until seeds are toasted. Uncover pot and pour hot spices in and stir thoroughly. Deglaze the fry pan with some chicken broth and pour residual spices and broth into the lamb. Stir. Cover and simmer for 2 hours.

Add 4-5 potatoes, peeled and cut into 1″ cubes. Stir into lamb pot. Cover and bring to boil, then turn down to simmer for an hour or so until potatoes are tender but firm. Add 1-2 cups thawed frozen peas. Stir in and simmer for another 15 minutes.

Serve with plain yogurt, chutneys, naan.


Pantry dinner. Leftovers and eggs. In an oval fry pan, cook a half rasher of bacon until crisp. Remove bacon to paper towel and pour out fat. Add butter to pan and sauté a little chopped red onion, then sweet roasted peppers, return the bacon, crumbled. Add baby spinach. Beat 2 whole eggs and 1 egg white with a little milk. Season to taste. Pour eggs over vegs and cook to set on the bottom. Add chunks of favorite cheeses on top. Place under broiler and finish cooking until cheeses bubble and lightly browned. Serve with English muffins and jalapeño jelly.

Veal Oscars

Classic Veal Oscar is garnished with fresh asparagus, crab meat topped with a béarnaise sauce. Academy Awards are not in asparagus season. Not a fan of rich sauces. So. Watch the red carpet with this revised winter version for 2:

4 veal scallopini pounded lightly to tenderize. In a large deep fry pan, brown quickly on both sides in a little olive oil and set aside in a bowl. Add 1/4 cup butter and a chopped shallot to the hot skillet. Brown and deglaze with 1/4 cup dry white wine. Add 1 can white asparagus tips (drained) or best fresh store bought tips you can find, lightly steamed. Add juice of 1 lemon. Season to taste. Add veal back into the sauce and simmer for 5 minutes covered. Add 1 lb. cooked chopped lobster or crab meat and stir just to warm. Serve veal topped with asparagus, lobster or crab and sauce with a side of pasta or rice. Can substitute chicken cutlets for veal.

Pork Tenderest Loin

After years of looking for recipes for pork tenderloin, it’s clear that butterflying and grilling with a rub is most flavorful. But, it dries out. And, winter is here. The moistest tenderest methodology I’ve found is the following:

Cut the loin crosswise into 4-5 chunks, depending on length and size. Between two sheets of cling wrap, pound out the slices, both sides, so that they flatten to a “steak-cut” of about 1/2″.  Marinade in a favorite sauce. I like Stonewall Kitchen Teriyaki, Sriracha, Wasabi Ginger, or Maple Chipotle sauces. I also add a little balsamic vinegar. Coat both sides of pork tenderloin “steaks”.  Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours or more. When ready to cook, bring to room temperature.

Sauté 2 julienned bell peppers, a chile or jalapeño pepper and/or a sliced onion in a large frying pan in a little olive oil. Push to outer sides of pan. Take pork “steaks” out of marinade, pat dry and sear on both sides. Add 1/4 cup chicken broth and stir to deglaze. Add more fresh sauce over the meat. Cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes until cooked through but still pink. Serve topped with peppers, onions and sauce juices over rice.

SuperBowl Brunch

No cooking during the game! So. Big brunch. Huevos with leftover flank steak.

Cut previously cooked flank steak into thin slices and place in a shallow pan and broil until browned. Meanwhile, in small fry pan melt butter and crack 4 eggs, yolks broken. Move around until almost set, then add slices of jalapeño jack cheese on top. Place under the broiler until cheese bubbles. Serve steak and eggs with fresh salsa and tabasco of your choice. Then graze the rest of the day. Go close game!!

Shrimp Fra Diavolo

Shell, clean 6-8 jumbo shrimp per person. Dry and set aside in a bowl. In a large deep fry pan, heat 1-2 jars Rao’s Arrabbiata sauce depending on how many shrimp. For each jar of sauce, add 1/2 cup dry red wine, 1/4 tsp. cayenne, pepperoncini flakes and dried oregano to taste. Stir. Add shrimp to the sauce and cook on medium heat to keep a low boil until done, about 6 minutes. Serve over Fettuccine or favorite pasta. Top with fresh basil leaves and lemon zest.

You can use any tomato sauce, just add more pepperoncini flakes than you would for the Rao’s Arrabbiata. It’s meant to be spicy hot. Il diavolo!

Thanksgiving Braised Oxtails

photo-49Adapted from Michael Romano’s Union Square Café Cookbook. Not tails of an ox. 6 + lbs. short ribs cut 1/2″ thick and of like sizes. This recipe takes a whole bottle of red wine, so a French Beaujolais works well. It’s not too expensive, but good enough to be the main ingredient. The meat has to marinade overnight in most of the extended mirepoix. Best to divide the short ribs into two glass baking dishes to fit all of the vegetables. photo-50

I deviate from Romano’s original recipe by using leek, parsnips and more veggies and peppercorns in the marinade, add the cipollini onions later during the cooking.

For the marinade: 2 cups sliced celery; 2 cups sliced carrots; 1 cup sliced parsnips on a slant; 2 cups sliced leek; 2 cups parsley sprigs; 1 tsp. juniper berries or 1/4 cup gin. 1 bottle red wine; 1/2 cup red wine vinegar. 2+ tsp. red, green, black whole peppercorn mix. Any leftover celery, carrot, parsnip chunks.

Place short ribs evenly into 2 glass baking dishes. Divide all veggies evenly over the meat in each dish, as well as even amounts red wine vinegar, red wine, peppercorns, parsley sprigs on top. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Remove the short ribs from the marinade and dry with paper towels. Strain the vegetables from the liquid in a bowl. Reserve both. Dust short ribs with a little flour on all sides. In a large stock pot, brown meat on all sides, in a little olive oil in stages. Remove meat from pot with tongs to a large bowl after each browning stage. Add the strained vegetables to the pot and brown. Add 1/3 cup tomato paste to middle of the pot and brown.

Return the meat, wine liquid from marinade to the stock pot. Turn to medium high heat. Stir all veggies, meat, wine marinade lightly to blend. Cover and place pot on middle rack in oven at 375 degrees for 1 1/2 hours.

Peel 3 cups cipollini onions, add to the pot and stir in. Cover again and bake for another 1 hour until meat is tender. Add chicken broth if needed to keep meat moist. Uncover for 20 minutes to brown. Remove pot from oven and let stand for 15 minutes. Discard bones. Serve meat with veggies, onions, ladled sauce accompanied with horseradish mashed potatoes. Beats turkey!

StuffingtonPost 2014- Cornbread Celery Apple

My favorite. Make 2 bags Pepperidge Farm Cornbread stuffing as directed. Separately, in a large skillet, in a little olive oil, brown one sweet onion, coarsely chopped. Add 2 cups peeled, cored, chopped tart green apples, 2 cups thickly sliced celery stalks until lightly browned. Add ground black pepper, garlic powder to taste. Blend into cornbread stuffing. Put in a baking dish in 375 degree oven covered until heated through, uncover ’til crispy on top.

StuffingtonPost 2014- Sausage Mushroom

In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add one large sweet onion, coarsely chopped, and a bunch of scallions, thickly sliced. Sauté until translucent. Add crumbled Italian sausage meat, taken out of casings; from 3 large sweet, 3 large spicy. Homemade from Frigo’s. Brown. Add 4 cups Crimini mushroom caps, quartered. Brown. Deglaze with 1/2 cup dry red wine. Stir. Season with oregano, basil, garlic powder to taste. Stir and remove from heat. Let stand to room temp.

Make your favorite bread stuffing as directed. I use Pepperidge Farm, 2-4 bags. When cooled, add the sausage, mushroom mixture and gently blend together. Pour into baking dish. Divide into 2 dishes if necessary for quicker heating. Pop in the oven, covered to heat through, then uncover until crispy on top.