Jalapno Pea Salad

1 c. jalapeno jelly
2 pkgs. frozen peas, cooked and drained
4 green onions, both white and green parts, chopped

3 ribs celery, chopped
1 small jar chopped pimientos, drained

  • Melt jelly in microwave or in a saucepan over low heat.
  • Meanwhile, combine remaining ingredients in a seperate bowl.
  • Pour melted jelly over vegetables.
  • Gently toss or stir to combine.
  • Refrigerate several hours or overnight before serving.

Onion Casserole

Add hot sauce for an added burst of flavor.

4 large onions, sliced (preferably sweet onions)
1 bag barbeque potato chips
2 c. grated cheddar cheese

2 cans cream of mushroom soup or cream of chicken soup
1/2 c. milk


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Crush potato chips.
  • In a greased casserole dish, layer onions, then chips, then cheese. Repeat.
  • Top with soup and drizzle milk over the top.
  • Add a bit more cheese and chips to the top.
  • Bake uncovered for about an hour, or until bubbly.

West of the Pecos Texas Casserole

1/2 c. butter
2 lbs. lean ground beef or buffalo
1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
6 oz. can chopped mushrooms, drained
2 tsp. chili powder

1/4 c. Worcestershire sauce
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 can tomato soup
16 oz. can (each) cream style corn, tomatoes, and green chilies
12 oz. pkg noodles, cooked

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  • Melt butter in skillet.
  • Add beef, onion, green pepper, mushrooms, chili powder and Worcestershire sauce.
  • Cook until meat is browned.
  • Add salt and pepper, tomato soup, cream style corn, tomatoes, and green chilies.
  • Simmer 30 minutes.
  • Add cooked noodles.
  • Transfer mixture to a casserole dish to cool.
  • Bake for approximately 30 minutes.
  • Top with grated cheese.

Peanut Butter Pie

Sub in low-fat versinos of the cream cheese and whipped topping ot reduce your guilt

Graham cracker crust
3 oz. package cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 c. peanut butter

1 c. powdered sugar
8 oz. carton whipped topping

  • Cream together cream cheese and peanut butter.
  • Add remaining ingredients and whip until smooth.
  • Pour into a graham cracker crust and chill several hours.

Easy Pineapple PIe

Graham cracker crust
14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 c. fresh lemon juice

20 oz. can crushed pineapple, drained
8 oz. carton whipped topping (use no-fat or low-fat)


  • Combine all ingredients into one bowl and pour into graham cracker crust.
  • Refrigerate overnight before serving.

Lidia Bastianich’s Eggplant & Rice Parmigiana

from her book, Lidia’s Common Sense Italian Cooking

2 c. Arborio rice
2 bay leaves
6 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1¼ tsp. kosher salt, plus more for salting the eggplant
3 Italian eggplants, cut into ¼ inch-thick slices, (about 2½ pounds before trimming)
1 c. chopped onion

6 c. canned tomatoes, crushed
½ c. fresh basil leaves, chopped and loosely packed
2 c. shredded, low-moisture mozzarella
1 c. grated Grana Padano (or substitute parmesan)





  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  • In a medium saucepan, combine the rice, 2 cups water, bay leaves, 1 tablespoon of oil, and ¼ teaspoon of salt. Bring to a simmer, cover, and cook until water is absorbed, about 7 minutes. The rice will still be al dente. Spread the rice onto a sheet pan to cool.
  • In a large colander, layer the eggplant and sprinkle liberally with kosher salt.
  • Cover the eggplant slices with a flat plate and weigh it down with cans. This will help press the excess liquid and bitterness from the eggplant. After about 20 minutes, rinse and drain the eggplant and pat dry.
  • Heat the remaining olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes; fill the can or bowl used for crushing the tomatoes with 1 cup of water and add that to the pan, as well. Season the mixture with the remaining salt and bring to a boil.
  • Add the eggplant slices to the sauce and simmer until tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in the basil and remove from heat.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the two cheeses.
  • Ladle about a third of the tomato sauce into a 9x13-inch baking dish. Cover the sauce with a third of the eggplant slices in an overlapping pattern. Over the eggplant, spread about half the rice, then layer another third of the eggplant slices, and a third of the sauce. Sprinkle with half the cheese mixture.
  • Top with the final layer of rice, then the remaining eggplant, then the sauce, and, finally, the last of the cheese. Cover the baking dish with foil, but do not touch the cheese, and bake until bubbly around the edges, about 25 minutes. Uncover and bake until browned and crusty on top, another 25 to 30 minutes. BHW


Shrimp in Lemon Sauce
(from the show, “Melting Pot” on Food Network)

24 large shrimp, cleaned and deveined
½ c. olive oil
1 tbsp. chopped fresh oregano
1 tbsp. minced garlic
1 c. fish broth
½ c. finely chopped tomatoes

2 eggs
1/3 c. lemon juice
1 tsp. crushed red pepper
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
6 wooden skewers, soaked in hot water for 30 minutes







  • Marinate shrimp in olive oil, oregano, and garlic for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat a grill, and preheat an oven to 450 degrees F.
  • Slide four shrimp onto each skewer and place on a hot grill to mark both sides quickly, but not cooking them through. Put the skewers in a baking dish and pour the fish broth over the shrimp, along with the tomatoes. Put into the preheated oven for about 4 minutes.
  • Remove the skewers from the oven, take the shrimp out of the baking dish, and place on a platter.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and lemon juice. Slowly pour this mixture into the fish broth with the tomatoes and incorporate it until foamy. Season the sauce with salt and pepper and pour it over the shrimp. Sprinkle it with parsley and serve warm, as an appetizer.

Julia Child's Beef Bourguignon Recipe

from Mastering the art of French Cooking

3 ½ T olive oil
3 lbs. lean stewing beef, cubed
1 carrot
1 sliced onion
Salt and pepper
3 C red wine; young and full-bodied (like Beaujolais, Cotes du Rhone or Burgundy)
2 ½-3 ½ C beef stock
2 T flour
1 T tomato paste

2 cloves mashed garlic
½ t thyme
1 crumbled bay leaf
18-24 white onions, small
3 ½ T butter
Herb bouquet (4 parsley sprigs, ½ bay leaf, ¼ t thyme, tied in cheesecloth)
1 lb. mushrooms, fresh and quartered.









  • Remove bacon rind and cut into lardons (sticks ¼-inch thick and 1 ½ inches long). Simmer for 10 min. in 1 ½ quarts water. Drain and dry.
  • Preheat oven to 450o F.
  • Sauté lardons in 1 T of the olive oil in a flameproof casserole dish over moderate heat for 2-3 min. to brown lightly. Remove to a side dish with a slotted spoon.
  • Dry beef in paper towels; it will not brown if it is damp. Heat fat in casserole dish until almost smoking. Slowly add beef and sauté until nicely browned on all sides. Add it to the lardons.
  • In the fat, brown the vegetables. Pour out the excess fat.
  • Return the beef and bacon to the casserole dish and toss with ½ t salt and ¼ t pepper.
  • Sprinkle on the flour and toss again to coat the beef lightly. Set casserole uncovered in center of preheated oven for 4 min.
  • Toss the meat again and return to oven for
    4 min.
  • Remove dish and reduce temp. to 325oF.
  • Stir in wine and 2-3 C stock, just enough so that the meat is barely covered.
  • Add the tomato paste, garlic, herbs and bacon rind. Bring to a simmer.
  • Cover casserole dish and set in lower part of oven. Simmer very slowly for 3-4 hours. The meat is done when a fork pierces it easily.
  • While the beef is cooking, prepare the
    onions and mushrooms.
  • Heat 1 ½ T butter with 1 ½ T of the oil until bubbling in a skillet.
  • Add onions and sauté over moderate heat for about 10 min., rolling them so they will brown as evenly as possible.
  • Add ½ C of the stock, salt and pepper (to taste) and the herb bouquet.
  • Cover and simmer for 40-50 min. until the onions are tender but hold their shape, and the liquid has evaporated. Remove herb bouquet and set onions aside.
  • Wipe out skillet and heat remaining oil and butter on high. As soon as the butter has begun to subside, indicating it is hot enough, add mushrooms.
  • Toss pan for 4-5 min. As soon as they brown lightly, remove from heat.
  • When the meat is tender, pour the contents of the casserole dish into a sieve set over a saucepan.
  • Wash out the casserole dish and return the beef and lardons to it. Distribute the cooked onions and mushrooms on top.
  • Skim fat off sauce in saucepan. Simmer sauce for 1-2 min., skimming off additional fat as it rises. You should have about 2 ½ C of sauce thick enough to coat a spoon lightly. If too thin, boil it down rapidly. If too thick, mix in a few tbsp. stock. Taste carefully for seasoning.
  • Pour sauce over meat and vegetables. Cover and simmer 2-3 min., basting the meat and vegetables with the sauce several times.
  • Serve in casserole dish, or arrange stew on a platter surrounded by potatoes, noodles or rice, and decorate with parsley.


White Chocolate Cranberry Cookies

½ C unsalted butter, softened
½ C light brown sugar
½ C granulated sugar
1 T good vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 ½ C flour
1 ½ t baking soda
1 C dried cranberries, chopped
¾ C white chocolate chips
¾ C macadamia nuts, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

With an electric mixer, cream the butter and both sugars together until smooth. Add the vanilla and egg, mixing well. Sift together the flour and baking soda. Spoon the flour mixture gradually into the creamed sugar mixture.

Stir in the cranberries, white chocolate chips and macadamia nuts. Drop by heaping spoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheets, two inches apart. Bake one sheet at a time until lightly golden on top and the edges are set, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool on the sheet about 5 minutes, and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

FACT: white chocolate isn’t really chocolate. It is cocoa butter, sugar, milk and flavorings. But it sure is good!


Soft Glazed Pumpkin Cookies

2 ½ C flour
1 t baking soda
1 t baking powder
1 t ground cinnamon
½ t ground nutmeg
½ t salt
1 ½ C sugar
½ C butter, softened
1 C canned pumpkin, or fresh, cooked
1 egg
1 t good vanilla
Glaze (recipe at end)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in medium bowl. Beat sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl until well blended. Beat in pumpkin, egg and vanilla extract until smooth. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto prepared baking sheets.

Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until edges are firm. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

TO PREPARE GLAZE: Combine 2 cups sifted powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons milk, 1 tablespoon melted butter and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract in a small bowl until smooth.

Drizzle Glaze over cookies.

TIP: To use fresh pumpkin, cut pumpkin in half, place cut side down on baking sheet and bake for an hour in a 350 degree oven. After cool, simply scoop out the pumpkin meat you need, discarding seeds and stringy pulp.

Kiss Cookies

1 C sugar
1 C brown sugar
1 C butter
1 C creamy peanut butter
¼ C milk
1 t good vanilla (imitation vanilla has a poor taste)
3 ½ C flour, sifted (sifted flour incorporates better)
2 t baking soda
1 t salt
2 eggs
2 pkgs Hershey’s chocolate kisses

Cream together sugars, butter and peanut butter. Beat in eggs. Mix in milk and vanilla.

Add dry ingredients, shape into balls the size of walnuts then roll in granulated sugar. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 10 to 12

minutes. DO NOT OVERBAKE! Immediately press chocolate kiss into each cookie.Makes several dozen.


Bolivian Almond Cookies

4 C almonds
1 C flour
¼ t salt
1 C sugar
¾ C butter, softened
1 t vanilla
½ t almond extract
2 eggs
2 T milk
1 T grated lemon peel
1 C sliced almonds

Place almonds in food processor. Pulse until ground but not pasty.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
Place ground almonds, flour and salt in medium bowl; stir to combine. Meanwhile, beat sugar, butter, vanilla and almond extract in large bowl with electric mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and milk. Gradually add half of flour mixture. Beat at low speed until well blended. Stir in lemon peel and remaining flour mixture.
Drop rounded teaspoonfuls of dough 2 inches apart onto prepared cookie sheets. Flatten slightly with spoon; top with sliced almonds.
Bake 10 to 12 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned. Remove cookies with spatula to wire racks and cool completely. Makes 3 dozen cookies.

Lavender Cookies

Lavender Sugar:

  • 2 TB fresh lavender flowers or 1 TB dried
  • 1 cup superfine white sugar


  • 1 cup plus 1-1/2 TB all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup lavender sugar, divided
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 TB (1/4 cup or 1/2 stick) cold butter, cut into pieces
  • 2-1/2 TB sweet white wine (try Cherry on Top white)
  • 12 leaves of fresh lavender, chopped finely

Combine sugar and lavender flowers.
Place in a glass jar, seal tightly, and store in a warm, dry spot for 1 to 2 weeks to infuse the sugar. Sift sugar through a fine sieve to remove flowers before using.

For the cookies: Preheat oven to 375 F.
Line cookie sheets with baking liners, parchment paper or lightly grease with butter. Remove 1 tablespoon of the measured 1/3 cup lavender sugar and set aside.

Whisk together remaining sugar, flour and salt until combined.
Rub butter into the flour using your fingertips or a pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Stir in wine and lavender leaves. Let mixture sit for 10
minutes, stirring occasionally. It should bond together.
Gather up the dough and place on a floured board. Roll into a rectangle 1/8-inch thick. Use a pizza wheel or a sharp knife to cut strips 2 inches long by 1 inch
wide. Twist each strip once in the center to resemble a bow and place on prepared baking sheet. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes until edges barely begin to turn brown.
Cool on wire racks and dust with remaining tablespoon of lavender sugar.

Grilled Salmon with Nasturium Vinaigrette

  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup shallots, finely minced
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp dried dill weed
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 3/4 cup chopped nasturium flowers
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
  • 8 (3 ounces each) boneless salmon fillets
  • 2 TB olive oil
  • Chives for garnish

Preheat grill or broiler.
Whisk together vinegar, shallots, olive oil and dill weed until combined.

Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in nasturtium flowers and chives.
Rub salmon fillets with 2 tablespoons of
olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Grill or broil salmon about 3 minutes per side, depending on thickness, but take care not to overcook.
For each serving, place 2 salmon fillets on each plate. Whisk the nasturtium vinaigrette briefly to re-combine, then spoon over salmon.

Garnish with chopped chives.
Yield: 4 servings

Cauliflower Soup with Curried Apple

  • 6 TB butter, divided
  • 1 medium head cauliflower, cut into florets (5 cups)
  • 1 c onion, chopped
  • 1 c leek, chopped (white and pale green parts only)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 c Chardonnay – use good quality, and drink with soup!
  • 4 c vegetable broth
  • 1 c whipping cream
  • 2 TB fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 1 large unpeeled Fuji or Red Delicious apple
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder, plus more for garnish

Melt 4 TB butter in large pot over medium-low heat. Add cauliflower, onion, leek and bay leaf; sauté until onion is translucent, about eight minutes.

Add wine; simmer until almost all of the liquid has evaporated, about four minutes. Add broth and cream. Bring to boil; reduce heat to medium; simmer until cauliflower is tender, stirring often, about 20 minutes. Remove bay leaf from soup. Use a hand blender and puree soup until smooth. Mix in lemon juice and cayenne. Season with salt and pepper. Cut apple into matchsticksize strips.

Melt remaining 2 TB butter in skillet over medium heat. Add apple and curry powder; sauté until apple is tender, about two minutes. Bring soup to simmer; ladle into bowls. Spoon warm apple mixture over. Sprinkle with additional curry powder and serve.

Chardonnay Mushrooms

  • 1/2 c Butter
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • dried parsley flakes
  • 1/4 c Chardonnay
  • 1 lb fresh mushrooms

Wipe dirt from mushrooms and cut into quarters. Heat butter in a saucepan over low heat until melted. Add mushrooms and stir in garlic powder, salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, approximately four minutes or until soft. Turn off heat and immediately pour Chardonnay onto mushrooms.

Chicken Breasts– perfect pairing!

  • 4 whole chicken breasts, boned and skinned
  • 1/2 lb butter, whipped
  • 1 tsp marjoram
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 4 slices mozzarella cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 c milk
  • corn flake crumbs
  • 1/2 c Chardonnay

Pound chicken breasts to make flat. Lay slice of mozzarella cheese on each, and roll. Mix butter, marjoram and oregano. Spread evenly on mozzarella and chicken. Dip rolls into egg-milk batter, and then roll in cornflake crumbs. Arrange in ungreased baking dish. With remaining butter, add wine and pour over breasts in dish. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes.

Mousse with Pomegranate Sauce

  • 3 c pomegranate juice (such as the “Pom” brand)
  • 10 oz white chocolate chips
  • 1 c chilled heavy whipping cream, divided
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 3 TB powdered sugar
  • Pomegranate seeds (optional)

Boil pomegranate juice in large saucepan until reduced to 2/3 cup, about 20 minutes.

Transfer to a small cup and chill.

Stir chocolate in ½ cup cream in medium saucepan over very low heat until just melted. Transfer to large bowl and cool 10 minutes. Whisk remaining ½ cup cream in small bowl until soft peaks form. Fold in chocolate mixture in 2 additions.

Using an electric mixer, beat egg whites until frothy. Add powdered sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. Fold into chocolate mixture in 2 additions. Divide between six 8-oz glasses and chill at least 1 hour.

When serving, drizzle with pomegranate sauce and top

Molten Chocolate Cake with Candied Walnuts

  • 6 oz semi-sweet chocolate
  • 2 oz bittersweet chocolate
  • 3/4 c unsalted butter
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 3 whole eggs
  • 3/4 c sugar
  • 3/4 c all-purpose flour
  • 3 c walnuts, toasted
  • 1 3/4 c sugar
  • pinch kosher salt

Butter 8 six-ounce ceramic ramekins and dust with flour. In a bowl over a doubleboiler, melt butter and chocolate, set aside and let cool.

In a mixing bowl, use electric mixer to combine eggs and sugar until pale yellow batter holds shape and forms ribbon on beaters. Blend flour into egg-sugar mixture with the mixer for 3 minutes. Add chocolate mixture, being careful to incorporate everything; mix for 2 more minutes.

Pour about 6 ounces of batter into each ramekin and refrigerate for 1 hour. In a preheated 475 degree oven, bake ramekins on a cookie sheet for 10 to 12 minutes or until they are puffed up and don’t jiggle when moved. Remove from oven and serve immediately.

For the walnuts, cook sugar until melted and slightly amber-colored. Mix walnuts, sugar and salt together; being sure to coat the nuts and let cool on a non-stick surface such as a slit pad or baker’s paper. Serve alongside the molten cake.

Crock Pot Coca-Cola Chicken

  • 4 lb of chicken, cut up into smaller parts
  • 1 medium sized onion, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp celery seed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 can of Coca Cola (12 ounce)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all of the ingredients into a 3-1/2 quart crock-pot. Stir once or twice to combine. Turn crock-pot to low and cook roughly 8 to 10 hours. Remove the chicken from the bones and remove the bay leaf. Serve the remaining chicken mixture over rice.


Crock-Pot Lasagna

  • 1 box of pasta (rotini, ziti, something like that looks like fun)
  • 2 jars pasta sauce (28 oz. each)
  • 1 medium can diced tomatoes
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 lb sausage
  • 2 TB olive oil
  • 2 c Parmesan cheese
  • 2 c mozzarella cheese
  • 2 c ricotta cheese
  • 1 1/2 TB parsley flakes

Cook the pasta according to directions (about five minutes). Cook the meats together and drain.

Mix the pasta and olive oil and put the pasta on the bottom of the crock-pot.

Mix the meat, one cup of each of the cheeses, and one of the eggs and put that on top of the pasta.

Mix the remaining ingredients and put that on the very top.

Cover the crock-pot, turn it on low, and come home to some faux lasagna.

Scandinavian Burgers

  • 1 1/2 lbs chopped or ground beef
  • 1/2 c sour cream
  • 4 TB blue cheese, crumbled
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper

Mix all ingredients. Shape into 4 patties and grill to desired doneness. Serve with thick slices of black bread or pumpernickel.

Southwest Burgers on the Grill

  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 1 c crushed saltine crackers
  • 1 egg
  • 1 medium onion, chopped fine
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped fine
  • 1 TB brown sugar
  • 1/2 c catsup
  • 1/2 c salsa (medium hot)
  • Salt and pepper Mix all ingredients thoroughly. Let stand in refrigerator to let flavors mix (overnight, if possible). Shape into patties and grill until desired doneness.

Hawaii Beef Kabobs

  • 1 c pineapple juice
  • 1/2 c cooking oil
  • 2 TB soy sauce
  • 3 TB brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 12 lb chuck eye or other beef steak, cut into chunks
  • 1 can pineapple chunks (reserved 1 cup juice)
  • 1 large onion, cut into chunks
  • 2 green peppers, cut into chunks

Combine first 6 ingredients to make marinade. Place in zip lock plastic bag, add beef and marinate in refrigerator for at least 8 hours. Drain beef and reserve marinade. Thread beef alternately with remaining vegetables with skewers. Grill, turning occasionally, basting with reserved marinade until beef is cooked to desired doneness.

Marinated Grilled Chicken

  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • 1/4 c wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp dry mustard
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp tarragon
  • 1 tsp rosemary
  • 3 lb cut-up chicken

Place oil, vinegar, sugar, mustard, salt, tarragon, rosemary, garlic and pepper in a screw top jar. Cover tightly and shake well.

Pour marinade into a shallow dish. Add chicken, turning several times to coat each piece. Cover and refrigerate overnight (the longer the better).

To cook, place chicken on prepared grill, skin side up, about 8 inches from heat. Cook, turning every 10 to 15 minutes, until a fork can be easily inserted in the chicken.

Hungarian Apple Soup

  • 2 tsp canola oil
  • 1 medium tart apple (such as Granny Smith), peeled and finely chopped
  • 3/4 c diced peeled Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 1/3 c finely chopped yellow onion
  • 1/4 c thinly sliced celery, plus leaves for garnish
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp dried sage
  • pinch of paprika
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 14oz can chicken broth
  • 3 TB sour cream

Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add apple, potatoes, onion and celery; cook, stirring often, until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in salt, sage, paprika and pepper; cook for 30 seconds. Pour in broth and bring to a simmer.

Reduce heat, cover and gently simmer until the potato is tender when pierced with a fork, about 10 to 15 minutes.

Transfer the soup to a large blender or food processor. Add sour cream and process until smooth. Garnish with celery leaves, if desired.

Wine Pairing- Try a Semillon or a crisp Chardonnay with this fantastic soup!

Apple Raisin Meatloaf

  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ½ c applesauce
  • 1 c soft bread crumbs
  • 1 c crushed saltine crackers
  • ½ c chopped onion
  • ½ c chopped peeled apple (medium sweet/tart)
  • ½ c raisins
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • 2 lbs lean ground beef or buffalo

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well by hand, but don’t over mix. Pat mixture into a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 1 ¼ hours or until no pink remains. Drain. Let stand at room temperature for 5 minutes before serving.

Wine Pairing- Try a bold and fruity Syrah from Washington state, or a Merlot with this unusual meat loaf. A Malbec from Argentina would also pair nicely, as would a Grenache from the Rhone region in France.

Sweet and Sour Shrimp and Apples

  • 3 TB vegetable oil
  • 1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 Golden Delicious apples, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1 c green onion, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 sweet green or red pepper, seeded and cut into strips
  • 1 ½ c fresh snow peas
  • ½ c cold water
  • 1/3 c firmly packed brown sugar
  • ¼ c rice wine or cider vinegar
  • 4 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 TB soy sauce
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • Noodles (optional)

In a large skillet or wok, heat 1 TB oil over high heat; stir fry shrimp until just pink. Transfer shrimp to a large bowl and reserve. Add another tablespoon of oil to the skillet; add apples and stir-fry 1 minute. Transfer to bowl with shrimp.

Add remaining tablespoon of oil to the skillet; add green onion, sweet pepper, and snow peas; stir fry 2 minutes. Transfer vegetables to bowl with shrimp and apples. In a small bowl, combine water, brown sugar, vinegar, cornstarch, soy sauce and ginger; mix until well blended. Pour mixture into skillet and cook, stirring constantly until boiling and thickened. Reduce heat to low, return all ingredients to skillet and heat through. Serve with rice or noodles, if desired.

Wine Pairing- Again, try a Semillon or perhaps a Sauvignon Blanc. An Albarino also pairs nicely with this dish.


Chicken with Garlic and Parsley

  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into cubes
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp chopped garlic
  • 3 Tbsp chopped parsley
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 lemon, quartered

Toss cubed chicken in flour, salt and pepper. In a skillet, heat olive oil and melt butter and cook chicken in a single layer, turning occasionally until done. Meanwhile, mix garlic and parsley in a bowl. Squeeze a bit of fresh lemon juice into mixture. Add parsley mixture to chicken and toss to coat. Serve chicken in a decorative dish and garnish with more parsley and a couple of lemon quarters.

5-Can Soup

  • 1 can vegetable broth
  • 1 can sliced carrots, drained
  • 1 can sliced zucchini in tomato sauce
  • 1 can sliced potatoes, drained
  • 1 can diced tomatoes with garlic, onion and oregano (or any you have)
  • Simply mix together and heat until done. Can season with salt and pepper.
  • You can substitute chicken or beef broth, if you like.

Southwestern Soup

  • 1 bag frozen corn
  • ½ green pepper, chopped
  • 1 can chili with no beans
  • 1 c hot water
  • salt and pepper
  • hot pepper sauce

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and cook over medium heat for 10 to 15 minutes. Adjust seasoning before serving. Serve with a dollop of sour cream or plain yogurt.

Jalapeno Pea Salad

  • 1 c jalapeno jelly (or any pepper jelly that has been sitting in your pantry)
  • 2 pkgs frozen peas, cooked and drained
  • 4 green onions, tops and bottoms, chopped
  • 3 ribs celery, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp chopped pimientos

Melt jelly in microwave or saucepan. Meanwhile, combine remaining ingredients. Pour melted jelly over vegetables; toss. Chill overnight before serving.

Sweet Potato Cranberry Bake

  • 1/2 c flour
  • 1/2 c brown sugar
  • 1/2 c uncooked minute oats
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/3 c cold butter
  • 1 17oz can yams, drained
  • 1 16oz can cranberries

Combine the first 4 ingredients. Cut in the butter, making coarse crumbles. Combine 1 cup of the crumb mixture with the remaining ingredients. Place in a baking dish, top with the remaining crumbs and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

  • 4 eggs
  • 2 c sugar
  • 1 15oz can pumpkin
  • 1 1/2c canola oil
  • 3 c flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 c semisweet chocolate chips

In a bowl, beat together the eggs, sugar, pumpkin and oil until smooth. In another bowl, combine flour, soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Add in batches to pumpkin mixture and mix well. Fold in chocolate chips.

Pour into greased or paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths full. Bake in a preheated 400-degree oven for 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes, before removing to a wire rack.

Cranberry Pear Pie

  • 1 pie shell
  • 2 TB flour
  • 1/2 c maple syrup
  • 2 TB melted butter
  • 5 c sliced pears, peeled
  • 1 c frozen or fresh cranberries

For Topping:

  • 1/2 c flour
  • 1/4 c brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/3 c cold butter, cubed
  • 1/2 c chopped walnuts

For pie and filling, combine ingredients and pour into pie shell. Mix topping ingredients in separate bowl until crumbly and spoon evenly on top - bake in a preheated 400-degree oven for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 and bake another 35 minutes or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly. You may want to put foil on pie crust edges to prevent burning.

Sweet Potatoes with Cranberry-Ginger Sauce

  • 2 medium sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 c dried cranberries
  • 1/4 c cranberry juice
  • 1/4 c maple syrup
  • 2 slices fresh ginger (use fresh)
  • pepper to taste

Pierce potatoes all over with fork. Microwave on HIGH for 10 minutes or until soft. Peel and cut potatoes into eighths; place in serving dish. Meanwhile, to prepare glaze, place cranberries, juice, syrup, ginger and pepper to taste in a small saucepan. Cook over low heat - 10 minutes - or until syrupy.

Discard ginger slices. Pour over potatoes.

Tomato Rockefeller

  • 1 (10oz) pkg frozen spinach, cooked to package directions
  • 1 c Italian bread crumbs
  • 3 to 6 green onions, chopped
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 6 TB butter, melted
  • 1/2 c grated Parmesan cheese, more for garnish
  • 1/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper (or black pepper)
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1/8 tsp hot pepper sauce
  • 6 thick tomato slices
  • extra ground black pepper

After cooking spinach, drain well and place in bowl. Combine all ingredients except tomatoes and extra black pepper with the spinach until thoroughly mixed. Arrange tomato slices on bottom of oiled baking pan. Sprinkle with black pepper. Mound an equal portion of spinach mixture on each tomato slice. Sprinkle with additional Parmesan cheese. Bake in a 350 degree oven, uncovered for 15 minutes.

Tomatoes with Horseradish Sauce

  • 1 TB butter
  • 4 large tomatoes, sliced
  • 3 TB mayonnaise
  • 2 TB 1/2 and 1/2
  • 1 TB prepared horseradish
  • Finely chopped parsley

Saute tomato slices in butter about 2 to 3 minutes on each side until sides begin to brown. Meanwhile, whisk together the mayonnaise, 1/2 and 1/2 and horseradish. Transfer tomatoes to serving dish and spoon prepared mayonnaise mixture on top. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.

Artichoke and Tomato Salad

  • 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 1 can artichoke hearts, drained
  • 1 small red onion, chopped fine
  • 1/4 c vegetable oil
  • 2 TB white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp dried tarragon (or 1 TB fresh, chopped)
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Combine tomatoes, artichoke hearts and onion in bowl. In separate bowl, combine remaining ingredients. Whisk until combined and sugar is dissolaved. Pour over vegetables and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate a few hours before serving.