Friday, July 12, 2024

Italian Sausage Vegetable Skillet

5 or 6 Italian sausage links
1 red bell pepper
1 small red onion, sliced
4 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste
1-28 ounce can San Marzano tomatoes, stems removed and crushed by hand
2-tablespoons tomato sauce from the crushed tomato can
1/2 c. chicken broth
1/2 t. crushed chili pepper
1 t. Italian seasoning
2 t. fennel powder, you may have to crunch fennel seeds to get this
1 scallion, sliced for garnish
fresh chopped basil, for garnish
freshly grated Parmesan
  1. Heat a bit of oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add sausages and cook until browned on all sides.  Sausages do not have to be cooked all the way through as they will cook more in tomato sauce.
  2. In the same skillet, add 1 T. oil and sauté the onions with the powdered fennel, chili pepper flakes and Italian seasoning.
  3. Add the garlic, tomato sauce and sauté 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly.
  4. Add bell pepper and crushed tomatoes and cook until the vegetables are crisp-tender.
  5. Stir in broth and cook another minute or so.
  6. Season with salt and pepper.
  7. Slice sausages in 1/4" or 1/2" pieces and add back to the skillet. 
  8. Cook 10 minutes until sausage is cooked through and sauce is thickened.
  9. Adjust seasoning.  Garnish with basil, chopped scallion and Parmesan.  
  10. Serve over rice or pasta.

Thursday, April 18, 2024

The 5 Minute Baguette


This recipe is from YouTube.  The video is titled "The 5 Minute Baguette".  Watch it before making it.  The owner has disabled embedding but it is still available to watch on YouTube.  Very easy to make. Crispy and delicious.

7 1/2 c. flour (950 g. flour)
2 t. salt
3/4 t. dry yeast
3 c. + 1/2 t. (730 ml.) room temperature water 

  1. Mix flour and salt together.
  2. Stir in dry yeast.
  3. Using the end of a round handed spatula, mix in the water until no loose flour is left.  It will be very shaggy. Do not remove from bowl or oil the bowl or top of the bread.
  4. Cover with plastic wrap or I like to use a glass pot lid so I can easily check the rise of the dough.
  5. Let rise at room temperature overnight.
  6. Using a dough scraper, gently scrape the dough on to a floured surface.  Sprinkle with more flour and gently scrape the dough in to a uniform shape.  
  7. Cut in to 3 or 4 pieces gently trying not to deflate the dough.
  8. Gently pull the dough pieces in to a baguette shape.
  9. Place the dough on parchment paper that is on a wire oven rack.
  10. Place in a 450 degree oven on the lowest oven rack setting.
  11. Cook 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown.

Saturday, March 16, 2024

Bacon Lettuce Tomato Salad with BBQ Dressing

1 head lettuce, washed and chilled
            10 slices bacon, crisply fried
                2 large tomatoes
      2 c. cubed cooked chicken, chilled
           1 hard cooked egg, sliced

  1. Tear lettuce in bite sized pieces.  Sprinkle with chopped chicken and bacon pieces. 
  2.  Chop tomatoes and sprinkle over salad.  Mix all ingredients, cover and chill.  You can also quarter and line the plate with them.
  3. Garnish with egg slices.
  4. Assemble the BBQ salad dressing.


1/2 c. mayonnaise

1/4 c. BBQ sauce

1 T. instant minced onion

1 T. fresh lemon juice, plus more if dressing is too thick.

1/2 t. salt

1/4 t. pepper

  1.  Mix all ingredients, cover and chill.

Thursday, March 14, 2024

Yummy Soft Bread Machine Dinner Rolls


This is a great recipe that can be made the day ahead and refrigerated for up to 24 hours then baked when needed.  Very easy to do and so good.  Makes 12 large or 24 small rolls.  I also use it to make bunny bread for Easter.

3/4 c. milk, warmed

6 T. soft butter

1 egg, beaten

3 cups bread flour, or 370 gr

1/4 c. sugar

1 t. salt

1 1/2 t. active dry yeast 

  1. Place all ingredients into a bread machine.
  2. Select "dough" cycle. (note to self, press 'menu' then 'select' then scroll down to 'dough' setting.)
  3. When cycle is complete, shape dough as desired or wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate up to 24 hours.
  4. If refrigerated, let dough set out for an hour before using.
  5. To shape, divide dough into 12 or 24 equal parts and roll into balls. I prefer the smaller version. Place on a lightly greased baking sheet or in a casserole dish that allows for expansion.
  6. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise until doubled in size, about 20 minutes.
  7. Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes.
  8. Brush top with melted butter.

Friday, March 8, 2024

Vesper (James Bond's Drink)


2 ounces gin
1 ounce vodka
1/2 ounce Lillet Blanc aperitif
Garnish: lemon twist
  1. Place in a cocktail shaker. Shake, never stir.

Lemon Drop Martini with Limoncello


2 ounces Vodka
1 1/2 ounces Limoncello
1/2 ounce Cointreau
2/3 ounces fresh lemon juice
crushed ice
lemon sugar to rim the glass

  1. Place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake.
  2. Place in a martini glass and enjoy.

Sunday, February 11, 2024

Parmesan Chopped Salad


          1 to 2 hearts of Romaine lettuce, 

rinsed and chilled

2 shallots or 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced

2 lemons, zested and juiced, keep the juice and zest separate

1 c. finely grated parmesan cheese

1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil

kosher salt and cracked black pepper

1/4 t. crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

  1. Chop the chilled lettuce very thinly and put in a salad bowl.
  2. Top with the shallots/red onion, parmesan cheese and the lemon zest.
  3. Cover with a damp paper towel and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 4 hours.
  4. For the dressing, combine the juice of 2 lemons, 1/4 c. olive oil, salt and pepper.
  5. Toss salad with enough of the dressing to just make the leaves glisten.  You may not need all of it.

Wednesday, January 17, 2024

Fabulous Bread Machine Dinner Rolls

These rolls are very soft, slightly sweet and wonderful.  
3/4 cup milk, warmed

6 T. soft butter

1 egg, beaten

3 c. bread flour

1/4 c. sugar

1 t. salt

1 1/2 t. active dry yeast

  1. Place ingredients into bread machine.  Add yeast to the dispenser.
  2.  Select "dough" cycle.  On my machine you must select "basic" before the dough cycle appears.
  3. When the cycle is complete, shape dough as desired or wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate up to 24 hours.
  4. If refrigerated, let dough set out for an hour before using.
  5. To shape for rolls, divide dough into 24 equal parts and shape into balls by pinching bottoms together.
  6. Place in a lightly greased 12" x 9" casserole dish.
  7. Cover with a damp cloth and rise until doubled in size.  About 35 to 45 minutes.
  8. Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes.
  9. Brush tops with melted butter.