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Showing posts from March, 2015

Bubba’s Homemade Summer Sausage, Updated

Bubba tried something new with his summer sausage.  I didn’t think it could be improved; however, he added pork to the mix this time, plus more spices, so now it has been taken up a notch.  

Nothing is better than fresh homemade, and I especially like this recipe because we know exactly what is in the summer sausage!

If you’ve been following my blog the last 5 years, you probably know that “Bubba” is really our older son, Bill, Jr., and that he has been making delicious summer sausage over the years, like this.  

The butcher at our local Italian butcher shop grinds the beef and pork together to blend the meats thoroughly.  Use 75% ground beef.  Summer sausage requires the fat, not only for flavor, but also to hold the log together.  Using a leaner grade of beef will result in dry crumbly summer sausage.  

Do not substitute regular table salt for the Morton Tender Quick Cure; they’re not the same thing.
It’s easy to make, but takes a little time; 5 days to cure, with kneading the meat onc…

Pappardelle with Cauliflower and Mustard Brown Butter

This is a delicious hearty side dish for these chilly days in early Spring ~ actually, it’s snowinglike mad now with 3” on the ground, and a forecast of 6” total of the white stuff before it ends later today.
It wouldn’t be Spring in the Chicago area without a little snow in the forecast!

As for the recipe:
Savory ingredients are here:  chewy, charred cauliflower, fried capers and breadcrumbs, plus browned butter that’s fortified by whole grain mustard.

Pappare, Italian, translates:  to gobble up.  Pappardelle pasta is a broad, flat long ribbon noodle, a cross between tagliatelle and lasagna, in width.  It’s perfect for dishes of this sort.

“Gobble it up” straight away while it’s piping hot and full-flavored ~ I could easily make a meal of it!
Pappardelle with Cauliflower and Mustard Brown Butter Adapted

1 small head cauliflower, cut into small florets, stems minced 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Kosher salt and seasoned pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons capers, drained
1/3 cup coarse …

Pineapple and Soy-Glazed Salmon

This is a tasty Asian twist on salmon!

The popular white miso in this recipe is slightly salty, a bit sweet ~ having a mild taste that blends well with pineapple juice for a delicious glaze.  It provides an ideal accompaniment to salmon by giving depth and flavor to the dish.  Plus, it’s a healthy addition, being packed with vitamins and protein.

This recipe was featured in Country Living magazine.  If you’re looking for a great new salmon recipe to try in your kitchen, this could be perfect for you! We each ate one salmon fillet for dinner; and the next day, ate one for lunch, atop mesclun greens.  Doesn’t get much better than this!

Pineapple and Soy-Glazed Salmon' Ingredients: 1¼ cups pineapple juice 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
¼ cup dry sherry
1 teaspoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons miso paste
4 (6-ounce) salmon fillets
½ teaspoon seasoned pepper

Method: Marinate the salmon:

In a medium saucepan over high heat, cook the pineapple juice, soy and sherry for 20 minutes. Stir in brown sugar an…

Irish Apple Cake for St. Paddy’s Day

We all turn a little bit Irish on St. Paddy’s Day, and it’s fun and tasty when our food can follow suit!

Apple cakes like this one are the traditional sweet in Ireland.  In the old days, it would’ve been baked in a "bastible," a black iron kettle by an open fire.

I happened upon this recipe, created by Margaret Johnson ~ who is perhaps the most prolific Irish-American writer of topics regarding Irish food and drink ~ and knew I had to try it.  This version is slightly adapted, using more cinnamon and less sugar, and pecans swapped for walnuts, with Honeycrisp apples substituting for Granny Smith. 

Maybe you’d like this moist cake served straight from the oven, with a dollop of whipped cream, but I think it’s perfect for breakfast the next morning!

Irish Apple Cake

Tender Baked Pork Chops

These were some of the best pork chops we’ve ever eaten!

We wanted baked “breaded” pork chops for dinner; however, I was out of eggs to whip up and dip the chops into before cooking.  But, I did have a container of Egg Beaters Southwestern Style in the refrigerator. 
The egg beaters include red and green peppers, onions and a variety of spices ~ a great combination that I will be using again for this type of meat dish.
After the egg dip, the pork was dredged in a mixture of Penzeys Ozark Seasoning, panko bread crumbs, and a little garlic powder, salt and seasoned pepper.
They slowly baked into some of the best pork chops ever!  They were tender, moist and lip-smacking good!  Delicious!

Tender Baked Pork Chops


4 boneless pork chops 1 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup Egg Beaters Southwestern Style
1 teaspoon Penzeys Ozark Style Seasoning
1 cup panko bread crumbs
1 teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon Kosher salt
½ teaspoon seasoned pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Pour olive oil onto ba…

Julia’s Favorite Roast Chicken

I still regret the day I didn’t take time off from work to attend Julia Child’s cooking demo and book signing at the Chicago Botanic Garden years ago.  I’m a huge fan of hers and, it would’ve been a wonderful thing ~ a great memory, for sure ~ and I know for a fact, nothing memorable happened at work that day!

Chicken is so popular, and there’s a good reason why; it’s delicious, healthy and the price is right.  Not much beats this roast chicken of Julia’s.  It’s moist and meaty on the inside with a great golden roasted color on the outside.

This is perfect roast chicken for about any occasion!  You’ll have to make it to find out how delicious it is!

Julia’s Favorite Roast Chicken Adapted


2½ tablespoons unsalted butter 1/3 cup each:  finely diced carrots, onion and celery
1 teaspoon thyme
One 3½ to 4-pound chicken
Freshly ground pepper
Celery leaves
Six 1/8-inch-thick lemon slices
½ cup sliced onion
½ cup sliced carrots
1 tablespoon lemon juice
¾ cup chicken stock


Preheat oven t…

“He toasted his bacon on a fork and caught the drops of fat on his bread; then he put the rasher on his thick slice of bread, and cut off chunks with a knife, poured his tea into his saucer, and was happy.”

~ D.H. Lawrence, Sons and Lovers

ᴡᴏᴏ ʜᴏᴏ!!!

ᴡᴏᴏ ʜᴏᴏ!!!

Dinner Party

Dinner Party
Jules-Alexandre Grun

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