Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas Cake(Iced Fruit Cake)

For the cake
1lb 2oz sultana raisins

9oz golden raisins

7oz glacé(candied) cherries, halved

4oz dried currants

4oz cut mixed peel

4oz  dried figs, roughly chopped

4oz dried apricots,  chopped

4oz dried pitted prunes, roughly chopped

5fl oz brandy

1 small orange, grated zest and juice

9oz unsalted butter, at room temperature

200g/7oz dark muscovado sugar

5 medium eggs

10 oz AP flour

7oz macadamia nuts, roughly chopped

Finishing decoration:
3 Tablespoons apricot jam

1lb marzipan

5oz ready-to-roll white fondant icing

Royal icing

Candy silver balls, to decorate

Powdered sugar, to dust

1.       Put the sultanas, raisins, cherries, currants, peel, figs, apricots and prunes in a large bowl and pour over the brandy, orange zest and juice. Mix well, cover and leave to stand overnight.

2.       Line the base of a 23cm/9in cake tin with a double thickness of parchment paper. Line the sides of the tin with a double thickness of parchment paper, so that it rises 1½-2in above the edge of the tin. Wrap a sheet of folded parchment around the outside of the tin and secure with string. Stand the prepared tin on a parchment baking sheet. Preheat the oven to 300° F.

3.       In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in the eggs, adding a little of the flour if the mixture starts to curdle. Add the fruit, its soaking liquid and the nuts and mix well. Stir in the flour, taking care not to over mix it. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and level the surface with the back of a spoon. Bake for 3-4 hours or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. If the top of the cake starts to get too brown, cover with a sheet of parchment.

4.       When the cake is cooked, remove it from the oven and leave to cool completely in the tin. Store the cake in an airtight tin, wrapped in greaseproof paper and foil for between two and three months. Feed the cake with brandy every 2-3 weeks until you are ready to decorate it.

5.       Pass the jam through a sieve and warm it in a pan with 1 tbsp of water. Invert the cake onto a serving plate or board. Use a little of the marzipan to fill any gaps between the cake and the plate. Brush the jam all over the cake. Roll out the remaining marzipan and lift carefully onto the cake, easing it around the sides. Trim off any excess with a sharp knife.

6.       Roll out the fondant icing to a¼” in thickness and cut out as many Christmas shapes as you can, re-rolling the trimmings. Set aside on parchment paper to harden. Meanwhile, make up a batch of royal icing. Spread the icing over the cake to cover it, then roughly peak it using a spatula. Arrange the stars on top and scatter over the silver balls. Leave the icing to harden, then dust the cake with icing sugar.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Royal Icing

It’s that time of year when many will head into the kitchen to bake a gingerbread house to decorate for the holidays. I am often asked what can be done to prevent the pieces from falling off, and the answer can be found in selecting the right icing for your project. If you’re looking for the perfect icing to use in the construction of your gingerbread house, royal icing will save the day.  Royal icing dries to a hard, smooth finish, and is used for decorating and frosting cakes and cookies. Royal icing is the perfect glue to attach pieces of your gingerbread house because it dries to a rock-hard yet brittle texture.  It has a crunchier texture than buttercream or store bought frostings, but can also be thinned with water to glaze pastries, or Bundt cakes. This glaze can also be spread with the back of a spoon to create the look of snow, or icicles hanging from the roofline of your house.

3 ounces pasteurized egg whites (3 tablespoons meringue powder can be substituted)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups powdered sugar
1.       In the large bowl of a stand mixer combine the egg whites and vanilla and beat until frothy.
2.       Add powdered sugar gradually and mix on low speed until sugar is incorporated and mixture is shiny. Turn mixer to high speed and beat until mixture forms stiff, glossy peaks. (This should take approximately 5 to 7 minutes.)
3.       Add food coloring, if desired. Use immediately
4.       Icing can be store in airtight container in refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Yorkshire Puddings

I was asked to provide a recipe for Yorkshire Puddings that would equal the quality of those served in the United Kingdom. The secret to getting these little treats to rise is that all of the ingredients must be at room temperature, and the oven should not be opened while they are baking. Failure to heed these instructions will result in very dense and flat puddings.
7/8 Cup All Purpose Flour (1 Cup minus 2 Tablespoons)
½ Teaspoon Salt
2 Eggs, Beaten
½ Cup Milk
½ Cup Water
1.       Preheat oven to 400˚ F
2.       Sift Flour and Salt in a large mixing bowl.
3.       Create a well in the center of the flour, and pour the milk into the center. Mix well.
4.       Beat the eggs into the mixture. Add Milk slowing while beating the mixture between additions.
5.       Add water and beat until large bubbles appear at the surface of the mixture. Allow mixture to rest 5 minutes.
6.       While mixture is resting, heat a 9 x 12 baking dish, or muffin pan containing about ¼ inch of beef drippings, or melted butter in the oven.
7.       Pour batter into hot pan until it reaches a depth of just slightly more than ½ inch.
8.       Bake for 20 minutes at 400˚F, and then reduce temperature to 350˚F.
9.       Continue baking 10-15 additional minutes until golden brown.
10.   Serve Immediately.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Rogan Josh

Serves 6

Rogan Josh is one of the most popular curry dishes served in restaurants today. The name means ”Red Curry” , the red being provided by the chilies.


2 tablespoons Ghee, or Clarified Butter

2 Pounds Braising Steak, cut into 1” cubes

1 Onion, chopped fine

3 Cloves Garlic

1-in. piece Fresh Ginger Root, grated

4 Fresh Red Chilies, chopped

4 Green Cardamom Pods

4 Cloves

2 Teaspoons Coriander Seeds

2 Teaspoons Cumin Seeds

1 Teaspoon Spanish Paprika

1 Teaspoon Sea Salt

1 Fresh Bay Leaf

¼ Cup Natural Yogurt

1-in. Piece Cinnamon Stick

2/3 Cups Hot Water

¼ Teaspoon Garam Masala

Freshly Milled Black Pepper to taste


1.       Heat the ghee in a large pot and brown the meat in batches.

2.       Add the onion to the ghee and stir over high heat for 3-4 minutes.

3.       Grind together the garlic, ginger, chilies, cardamom, cloves, coriander, cumin, paprika, and salt in a spice grinder.

4.       Add the spice mixture and bay leaf to the pot and stir until fragrant.

5.       Return the meat and any juices to the pot, and simmer for 2-3 minutes.

6.       Gradually stir in the yogurt to the pot while keeping the sauce simmering.

7.       Stir in the cinnamon and hot water. Season with black pepper.

8.       Transfer meat to a covered casserole dish and cook in a preheated, 350°F oven, for 1 hour, stirring frequently, until the meat is very tender and the sauce has slightly reduced.

9.        Discard the cinnamon stick, and stir in the garam masala. Remove any excess oil from the surface.

10.   Serve with  steamed basmati rice and naan bread.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Lamb Tikka Masala


1 teaspoon cumin seeds, ground

½ teaspoon ground turmeric

2-inch piece ginger root, grated

2 garlic cloves, crushed

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup natural yogurt

2 pounds boneless lamb, cut into 1 inch pieces

1 Tablespoon Paprika or 1-2 drops edible red food coloring

1 teaspoon water

Fresh mint leaves, to garnish

Masala Sauce

1 tablespoon ghee( Clarified Butter)

3 tomatoes, skinned and chopped

½ teaspoon yellow mustard seeds

2 fresh green chilies, chopped

½ cup coconut milk

3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

salt and pepper to taste


1.       Combine the cumin, turmeric, ginger, garlic, salt and yogurt in a bowl. Stir in the lamb until evenly coated with the sauce. Dilute the food coloring with the water, and add to the bowl, stirring well. Marinate in the refrigerator for 2 hours. Soak 6 wooden skewers in hot water with 1 teaspoon oil for 15 minutes.

2.       Make the masala sauce. Heat the ghee in a large saucepan and add the tomatoes, mustard seeds, green chilies and coconut milk. Bring to a boil, and then simmer for 20 minutes until the tomatoes have broken down. Stir occasionally.

3.        Thread the pieces of lamb onto the skewers. Set the skewers on a broiler pan and cook under a preheated very hot broiler for 15-20 minutes, turning occasionally.

4.       Stir the mint and fresh chopped cilantro into the sauce, and season with salt & pepper.

5.       Carefully remove the lamb from the skewers. Stir the lamb into the masala sauce and garnish with fresh mint leaves.

6.       Serve with Basmati Rice, and hot Naan bread.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Moroccan Lamb Tagine with Apricots

This classic Moroccan recipe is not only delicious but easy to make. Tagine is a savory combination of dried apricots and meat stewed with saffron, cinnamon, ginger and pepper similar to the curries that are gaining in popularity. While tagine is prepared traditionally in the cookware it’s name is derived from you can use a Dutch oven and get the same great results.

Serves 4


2 pounds lamb tenderloin, cut into two inch pieces (Beef can be substituted)
2 medium onions, finely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly minced ginger
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon saffron threads, crumbled
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 cassia cinnamon stick
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup vegetable oil or butter
1 bunch cilantro, tied with butchers twine
1 cup dried apricots
3 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ cup toasted almonds (optional)
1 teaspoon white sesame seeds (optional)


In a large pot, mix the meat with the onions, garlic, spices, and oils. Brown the meat for a few minutes over medium-high heat.

Add 2 1/2 cups of water and the cilantro. Over high heat, bring the meat and liquids to a simmer.

Cover and simmer the meat over medium heat for two to two-and-half hours,(Remove ½ cup of the cooking liquid and reserve after 1 hour of cooking time. ) until the meat is very tender. If necessary, add a small amount of water during cooking to prevent the meat from scorching. Remove, and discard the cilantro.

While the meat is cooking, place the apricots in a small pot and cover with water. Simmer the apricots over medium heat, partially covered, for 10 to 15 minutes, or until tender. Drain the apricots and add the honey, cinnamon and the 1/2 cup of reserved liquid from the meat. Simmer the apricots for about 5 to 10 minutes, or until they are sitting in a thick syrup.

When the meat has cooked, reduce the sauce until it is mostly oil and onions.

To serve, place the meat on a large serving platter (or leave in the base of a tagine). Spoon the apricot and syrup mixture on top of the meat. If desired, garnish with toasted almonds, and sesame seeds.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Easy Party Snack Recipes

We have just released a couple of new blends that will help you whip up those favorite snacks for your next get together. Check out our new Camp Verde Spicy Nacho, White Mountain Garden Herb, and Queen Creek Zesty Cheddar blends.

Toasted Cereal Party Mix

Yield:20 Servings

1 cup margarine, melted 
1 Packet (1/2 ounce) Camp Verde Spicy Nacho Seasoning
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
2 cups crispy rice cereal squares
2 cups crispy corn cereal squares
2 cups crispy wheat cereal squares
2 cups toasted oat cereal
1 cup mini pretzel sticks
1 cup mixed nuts

Preheat oven to 275 degrees F (135 degrees C).
In a large roasting pan, melt margarine. Mix together Camp Verde Spicy Nacho Seasoning and Worcestershire sauce.
Stir crispy rice, corn, wheat and oat cereals, pretzels and nuts into the butter mixture and coat well.
Bake uncovered in the preheated oven for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.

White Mountain Herb Spinach Dip
Yield:20 Servings


1 Tub (16 ounces) sour cream
1 box (10 ounces) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well-drained
1 can (8 ounces) water chestnuts, rinsed, drained and chopped
1 round loaf French bread


Stir together White Mountain Garden Herb Seasoning, sour cream, spinach and water chestnuts. Chill 30 minutes or until just before serving.

Cut top off the bread and remove center (using firm bread pieces as snacks). Fill bread bowl with dip. Serve with cubed bread and vegetable crudités.

Beer Cheese Dip
Yield:20 Servings


2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
¼ cup salsa
½ cup beer
Chopped green onions and shredded cheese, for garnish
Tortilla Chips, Pretzels or assorted fresh vegetable crudités, for dipping


Combine Cheddar cheese, cream cheese and dips mix in medium bowl. Gradually stir in beer until mixture reaches desired consistency. Garnish with chopped green onions and additional Cheddar cheese. Serve with pita chips, crackers, pretzels or vegetable pieces.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Brazilian Style Short Ribs-Costela de porco com farinha de mandioca

When cooking authentic Brazilian barbecue many will tell you the trick is in finding farinha de mandioca, but like many other things there‘s hope in a common substitute. Farinha de mandioca is a fine ground Cassava flour. Perhaps try looking for Arrowroot as that work wonderful as a substitute.

Ingredients:3 Lbs. Short ribs
1 Cup Red Wine
1 tsp. Sea Salt
1 tsp. Black Pepper
¼ Cup Farinha de Mandioca ( Cassava Flour)
2 Tbsp. Marjoram
¼ Cup Red WineVinegar

Steps:About 1/2 hour before the barbecue, marinate the ribs in red wine, salt, pepper, vinegar and marjoram. Sear the ribs over direct heat, and transfer to the side of the grill without coals. Barbecue the ribs over indirect heat until they're almost done, remove, coat well with farinha de mandioca and put them back on the grill until they're really well done.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011



3 pounds boneless pork loin

3 tablespoons Jerk Seasoning

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 bananas, peeled and sliced

2 mango, peeled and diced

1 jalapeno, seeds removed, finely chopped

1/2 red onion finely diced

2 tablespoons lime juice

1 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves


Preheat grill to 350 degrees F.

Pat the pork dry with a paper towel and rub 3 tablespoons of jerk seasoning on the meat. Let marinate for 45 minutes at room temperature, covered.

After 45 minutes have passed, rub the meat with the olive oil, and grill until it reaches 165°F internal temperature making sure to turn the pork every few minutes to prevent it from burning. Let rest for 10 minutes prior to slicing.

Prepare the Banana mango salsa- Recipe Follows

Slice the pork tenderloin and top with roasted banana mango salsa.

Banana Mango Salsa


large ripe mangoes, cut into 1/4 inch dice (about 2½ cups)

2 medium ripe bananas, cut into 1/4 inch dice (about 1 cup)

1 red habañero chile, seeded and minced

1 sweet red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and cut into 1/8 inch dice

2 Tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped

1/2 to 1 small red onion, cut into 1/8 inch dice

1 Tablespoon fresh lime juice

Sea salt, to taste


To make the mango-banana salsa, in a large bowl mix together the mangoes, bananas, chile, pepper, cilantro, onion, and lime juice.

Season the salsa with salt, give another toss, and check to see if it needs a pinch more.

 Serve the salsa immediately for the freshest flavor. But if you must, you can also cover and refrigerate it 1 to 3 hours ahead. Make sure to give it a good stir before serving.

Caribbean Black Beans & Rice

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1 small green bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped

2 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped

Salt and black pepper, to taste

2 cups cooked black beans

1 cup uncooked rice

2 cups cold chicken or vegetable broth


Heat the oil in a saucepan and add the onion, garlic and pepper. Sauté until the onion is tender.

 Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring, until the mixture is well blended and thick.

Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Stir in the black beans and mix well.

Add rice and chicken broth, mixing lightly. cover and cook over very low heat until rice is tender and broth is absorbed.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Roasted Asparagus & Crab Bisque

1 pound fresh asparagus, ends snapped
1 tablespoon olive oil
Sea salt
1/2 cup chicken or vegetable stock
2 cups half & half
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Sea salt, to taste (up to 2 teaspoons)
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
8 ounces  fresh crab meat, picked
Fresh parsley, chopped

1/2 Cup shredded parmesan cheese, to thicken


Preheat oven to 425° and arrange asparagus in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with up to 1 tablespoon coarse sea salt and roast until just crisp-tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and allow to cool until cool enough to handle.

Cut the asparagus into 1" pieces reserving the tips. Place asparagus( not tips) into the bowl of a food processor or a blender. Add the stock, melted butter and salt and pepper and purée until smooth.

In a medium sauce pan, add puréed vegetable mixture, reserved asparagus tips and half & half and cook over medium heat until bisque is heated through (do not allow the mixture to come to the boil). Add parmesan cheese, and stir to incorporate. Adjust seasoning and reserve for  service. Top each serving with 1 ounce of crab and fresh herbs and serve immediately.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Gallitos- Costa Rican Breakfast Tacos


2½ tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
12 ounces (about 2 medium) Yukon Gold potatoes, diced into ¼-inch cubes
16 small flour or corn tortillas
16 ounces (1 medium) butternut squash, peeled and diced into ¼-inch cubes
12 ounces Mexican chorizo
4 eggs
1/4 teaspoon Santa Rosa Fajita Seasoning
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon chopped cilantro
* Optional* Serve with Pico de Gallo salsa, and fresh Avocado

1. Preheat oven to 250F.

2. Wrap tortillas in foil and place in warm oven.

3. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in large sauté pan over medium heat. Add potatoes and season with sea salt while stirring until the potatoes are evenly coated with oil. Cover the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are browned and tender, about 20 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, in a medium sauté pan, cook chorizo over medium heat until evenly browned. Cover, and reserve warm.

5. In a large sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add squash, ½ teaspoon sea salt, and Santa Rosa Fajita Seasoning and sauté, uncovered, until browned and tender, about 20 minutes. Add squash to potatoes, garnish with chopped cilantro.

6. Meanwhile, heat remaining ½ tablespoon oil in small sauté pan over medium heat. Crack eggs into a medium bowl. Add ¼ teaspoon salt, pinch black pepper, and milk. Whisk until evenly combined. Pour the egg mixture into the pan and reduce the heat to medium-low. Gently lift and stir the eggs until they are cooked, and no liquid remains. Pour eggs into serving bowl.

7. Serve tortillas, potatoes, squash, chorizo, eggs and pico de gallo separately, allowing each person to build their tacos as they desire.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Caribbean Rice Pudding-Arroz con Leche


1 cup rice (short grain)
2 1/2 cups water
a pinch of salt
1 cinnamon stick
3 strips of lemon peel (or zest)
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 can evaporated milk
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp sugar
grated cinnamon and or cinnamon stick for garnish

1) Wash the rice – this gets rid of much of the starch. To wash, place the rice in a large saucepan, cover with water and swirl around. The water will get cloudy. Pour out the cloudy water, use a strainer to keep the rice in the pot. Repeat 3 or 4 times until the water is clear.

2) In the same saucepan, over high heat, mix the following ingredients: rinsed rice, 2 1/2 cups water, cinnamon stick, lemon peel and a pinch of salt. Bring to boil.

3) Reduce heat, cover and simmer until water is mostly absorbed and rice is tender. About 15 to 20 minutes.

4) Remove cinnamon and lemon.

5) While the rice is cooking whisk together the condensed milk, evaporated milk and the vanilla.

6) Stir the milk mixture into the cooked rice.
7) Cook uncovered over medium low heat, stirring occasionally until liquid is mostly absorbed and you begin to see the texture of the rice as the liquid becomes absorbed. The mixture will take on a slightly caramel color – THIS IS A GOOD THING FOR FLAVOR!!! Stir in sugar. Remove from heat and spoon into individual serving dishes. Sprinkle with cinnamon and chill for about an hour before serving.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Hash brown Casserole

Many years ago I was Trout fishing the Chattahoochee River with a friend who suggested we should stop for breakfast on our way home. The waters we fished just below the Buford Dam are around 30°F so after sitting in it for a few hours I was ready to put away the float tube and eat. We stopped at Cracker Barrel for a big breakfast of Chicken Fried Steak, Biscuits & Gravy, and a side of Hash brown casserole. This is still my favorite breakfast after a morning of fishing, and the hash brown casserole is famous. I've shared my breakfast spot with many friend and family members over the years, but I don't think I've shared the recipe for the hash brown casserole. These potatoes are not just great for breakfast, but should be tried with a Blackened Pork Tenderloin, or even some grilled Chicken breast.

2 pounds shredded hash brown potatoes
1 (10 3/4 oz) can condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
1/4 cup milk
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup finely chopped Vidalia onion
2 cups shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 additional cups of extra sharp cheddar are recommended to sprinkle on the casserole prior to baking, but this is optional.

Preheat oven to 350°F

1. Sauté onions in butter until just soft. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

2. Mix potatoes, chicken soup, milk and cooked onions in a big bowl until well blended. 

3. Add cheese and mix well. Pour contents into a 9 x 13 baking dish. 

4. Bake about 45 minutes or until casserole is heated through and cheese is melted.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Ranch Style Beans


1 pound dried pinto beans
6 Ancho chiles, stems and seeds removed
6 cloves of garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
1 15 oz. can of tomatoes (or 2 medium-sized tomatoes, peeled)
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1 cup of water
6 cups of beef broth
3 each jalapenos, chopped * optional*
Salt and black pepper to taste


Soak the beans covered in water—either overnight or the quick soak method in which you place the beans in a pot, cover with water, bring to a boil, cover and remove from heat and let sit for one hour.

Drain the soaked beans.

In a large pot, or skillet over medium high heat, cook the ancho chilies on each side for a couple of minutes (or until they start to pop), turn off the heat and fill the skillet with warm water. Let them sit until soft and rehydrated, which should happen after half an hour or so.

In the pot you’ll be cooking your beans, heat up a teaspoon of canola oil and cook the onions until golden. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. 

Place the cooked onions and garlic in a blender and add the tomatoes, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar, paprika, cumin, oregano, water and hydrated ancho chiles. Puree until smooth.

Add the pinto beans and beef broth to the pot and stir in the chile puree. On high, bring the pot to a boil and then cover; turn the heat down to low and simmer for two and a half hours, stirring occasionally.

 After the beans have cooked for 2-2.5 hours check for tenderness (The cooking time can be as short as two and a half hours and as long as four hours). When you're satisfied that the beans are done, you can add chopped Jalapenos to increase heat, or just finish with salt and pepper to taste.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Blackened Redfish

We think that this is one of the best ways to cook fish, but it's a good idea to cook this outdoors due to the amount of smoke that will be produced during the process.

1/4 Cup Blackening Spice Seasoning
12 oz. Unsalted Butter, melted
6 1⁄2"-thick 8-oz. skinless, boneless red drum, black
drum, or red snapper filets

1. Put 2 tablespoons of the butter into each of six small ramekins; set aside and keep warm. Put remaining butter into a wide, shallow dish. Dip each filet in melted butter and place on a parchment paper–lined sheet tray. Dust each filet generously on both sides with spice mixture, pressing spices and herbs into fish with your hands. Pour remaining butter into a small bowl.

2. Preheat oven to 200°. Turn on ventilation system and open windows.

3. Heat a large cast-iron skillet over high heat until white and ashy, 8–10 minutes. Carefully place seasoned filets in pan. Stand back to avoid smoke and pour 1 tsp. of the remaining butter over each filet.

4. Cook until bottom of each filet appears charred, about 2 minutes. Turn filets over and pour 1 tsp. butter over each. Continue cooking until fish is cooked through (time will vary according to heat of pan).
5. Transfer to a sheet tray on a rack and keep warm in oven.

6. Repeat cooking process with remaining fish and butter. Serve with reserved warm melted butter.


Sunday, June 19, 2011

Coke Chocolate Cake with Coke Icing

The exotic adventure of a recipe passed down for generations, and a Mother with the time to share it with us all is what got me into cooking to begin with. Long before the introduction of microwaves and convenience foods to our homes we built traditions that every year at Thanksgiving, and Christmas most of us attempt to get back into our lives. That being said I fear those days are slipping away, and with that some of the great recipes that came with them. Thank you to all those Chefs out there that are doing what they can to save us all from the loss of such treasures. Here’s my contribution to the cause…

Coca-Cola* Chocolate Cake with Coke Icing

The Cake:
2 Cups Sugar
2 Cups Flour
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
½ Pound of Margarine
1 Cup Coca Cola
3 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder
½ Cup Buttermilk
½ Cup Miniature Marshmallows
2 Eggs, Beaten
1 Teaspoon Vanilla

Combine the Flour, Sugar, and Baking Soda in a bowl. Heat the Margarine, Cocoa Powder,Marshmallows, and Coca Cola to a boil. Pour over flour mixture; add Buttermilk, Eggs, and Vanilla. Mix well.
Bake 35 Minutes at 350 Degrees

Coca-Cola* Icing:

¼ Pound Margarine
6 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder
6 Tablespoons Coca Cola
1 Pound of Confectioners Sugar
1 Cup Chopped Pecans

Combine Margarine, Cocoa Powder and Coke in a sauce pan to bring to a boil. Add Sugar and beat well until creamy. Add nuts and spread over warm Coke cake…..

* This recipe dates back to the time when we only had one Coke available. This would now be called Coca-Cola Classic for those that don’t remember the terrible day they pulled our original coke from the shelves…..

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Chicken & Cheese Enchiladas

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/2 cup diced onion

1 clove garlic, minced

3 jalapeno peppers, minced

2 quarts chicken broth

1/2 cup masa harina

1 cup heavy cream

2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese

1 cup crumbled Queso Fresco

1 cup Anejo Enchilando cheese ( can substitute Cotija cheese)

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 Tablespoon chili powder

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon paprika

1 dozen flour tortillas

1/4 cup chopped cilantro


1.  In a large pot over medium heat, cook chicken breasts in oil until well browned on all sides.
Remove and set aside.

2.  Cook onion and garlic in remaining oil until onions are translucent. Add jalapeno peppers, paprika, salt, chili powder and cumin. Pour in
chicken broth, making sure to reserve 2 cups, and bring to a boil.

3.  Add chicken breast to the sauce, and cook, covered, until tender. Remove chicken breast.

4.  In a bowl, whisk together masa harina and 2 cups chicken broth until well blended. Pour into pot with enchilada sauce, add heavy cream. Bring to a boil, stirring
frequently until it starts to thicken.

5.  Reduce heat and simmer 15 to 20 minutes, until thickened. Remove from heat.

6.  When sauce has thickened remove from heat and add 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro,1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese, 1/2 cup enchilando cheese, and 1/2 cup crumbled queso fresco.

7.  Puree, or blend the sauce until smooth, and reserve.

8. Shred cooked chicken and add it to a large bowl to cool. Season chicken with salt & pepper. Add 1/2 of remaining cheese to chicken, and mix well.

9.  Heat oven to 350°F with oven rack in bottom position.

10.   Wrap tortillas in aluminum foil, and bake in oven for 10 minutes.

11.    Coat the bottom of a 9 x 13 ovenproof baking dish with a 1/4" layer of enchilada sauce.

12.    Place 3 tablespoons shredded chicken mixture in the center of each tortilla forming a line, and roll into a cylinder shape. Repeat until all tortillas have been used.

13.    When all tortillas have been rolled, and the dish is full coat tortillas with additional layer of sauce making sure no flour tortilla is visible.

14.    Sprinkle remaining cheese on top of enchiladas, and bake at 350°F for 30 minutes.

15.    Remove from oven, and garnish with remaining chopped cilantro prior to serving.