Monday, March 14, 2011

Angel in Heaven

Another angel in heaven.  Yesterday an amazing woman close to our hearts sadly left us.  It brought back sad memories for me when I myself got the unwanted call that my mother had passed.  Odd how quickly certain emotions arise to the surface and show themselves.  I'm honored I had the past 24 years to get to know Jo.  She was truly someone who left a lasting impression on all who crossed her path.  RIP ~ Josephine Peden Huss.  

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Pepperoni Soup

1 - 28 oz can of tomato puree
add 2 cans of chicken broth (using can from tomato puree)
3/4 cup pepperoni diced
1 tsp Italian seasoning - dried
dash of dried basil
salt & pepper to taste
dash of onion and garlic powder to taste
dash of oregano
also throw in some celery leaves.

6 Qt. pot: put all in.  Bring to a boil then turn down to a simmer.  When almost done add some Romano cheese cook down and taste adjust seasonings.  Serve in individual bowls top with shredded mozzarella and slices of crusty Italian bread.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Buffalo Style Deviled Eggs

12 hard cooked eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup bleu cheese, crumbled
1/4 tsp ground pepper
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 tsp celery salt
1 Tbsp minced parsley
2 ribs finely diced celery
1/2 tsp hot sauce

Mash the yolks with all but the celery.  Add more mayonnaise if it is to dry to your liking.  Spoon or pipe into the whites.  Garnish with the diced celery.  For more heat, sprinkle a little cayenne pepper on top.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Chicken Riggies

Chicken Riggies
4 Tbsp butter
2 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into bite size pieces
8 oz pkg mushrooms, sliced
1 medium green pepper, chopped
1 medium hot pepper, chopped (optional)
1 medium onion, chopped 2 cups water
2 tsp chicken boulion or 2 cubes
1 cup tomato sauce
1/2 pint heavy cream
1 tsp parsley
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 cup black olives - sliced
2 Tbsp cornstarch
1 lb rigatoni, cooked and drained

In a large pot, melt butter and add chicken. Cook over medium heat until tender. Add mushrooms and cook 5 minutes. Add peppers and onions and continue cooking until soft, about 5-7 minutes. Add water, bouillon, sauce, heavy cream and spices. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occassionally. Add olives and simmer 5 minutes more.

In a small bowl, mix cornstarch with 2 Tbsp water until it dissolves. Add to the sauce, stirring continuously until it thickens. When thickened, mix sauce with giratoni together in deep bowl and serve immediatly. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Italian Greens - Georgio's Style

1 cup Yukon gold potatoes cut in 1 inch cubes
1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon each onion and garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 chopped Vadalia onion
2 heads escarole
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
8 ounces chicken broth
4 ounces thinly sliced hard salami
1/2 cup bread crumbs
6 minced garlic cloves
1/2 cup Romano cheese
Freshly chopped Parsley

Potatoes: Toss in Bag with 1/4 cup olive oil, parsley, garlic and onion powder and paprika. Roast for 1/2 hour at 350 degrees. Set aside.

Greens: Saute garlic and onion in 1 tablespoon olive oil; add chopped escarole and cook through. Add chicken broth, julienned salami, crushed red peppper and potatoes. Simmer till stock reduced - about 45 minutes.

Combine bread crumbs with 2 Tablespoons oil. Toast until brown. Mix half with greens.

Add Romano Cheese and place in greased baking pan. Top with remaining crumbs. Bake in oven at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Garnish with parsley.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Exciting Changes

Here we are streaming into the middle of March and it always amazes me how life seems to fly by as I grow older. Remembering back to my "kid" years time just seemed to linger and never move along. Gosh I miss the good old days.

It's an exciting time around our house for we made the decision this past fall we were jumping in to the remodeling world and updating our home. Starting with my favorite room in the whole house the kitchen. When we started on this venture I would never of guessed that planning a remodel would take months and lots of homework. I guess I was blind to the real world in this matter and thought it all happened with a snap of ones finger. Oh no was I ever wrong.

Finding a designer / company to work with, what exactly did we want, then the want list had to be streamlined to what exactly the area we had to work with and how to make it all happen. As we went through pages of books, web sites, models in the showroom the fear kept bouncing around inside of my brain "What if I choose something horribly wrong? I'm gonna have to live with this for the rest of my life!!! " I am at the point of announcing there is no turning back on our decisions for everything is ordered Now I'm at the packing up the kitchen stage. Yep that truly started today. #1 goal is if I haven't used it in years and even forgotten about it way back in the cupboard then it must go. Of course all was going well till I found this ancient old bottle opener back in a drawer and asked my husband if it he was cool if I got rid of it. See this was his childhood home so I'm having a feeling I may find a few things tucked back in corners I had missed during the transition of our move in 10 years ago. As you already figured the bottle opener is staying. I hope these 27 new cabinets have plenty of room.

My passion for cooking is the most relaxing thing I do in my life. This new kitchen will be a boost to my cooking spirits. I stumbled over the most amazing cookbook last week on line and without a doubt ordered it. A Taste of Utica from central New York has it's own unique style of cooking and just flipping through the pages after the book arrived I could taste home. Chicken Riggies, Utica Greens, Tomato Pie, Hemstrought's Bakery Half Moon Cookies, Blueberry Pierogi, Peperoni Soup, Italian Rum Cake, Pizza Dough, Our area sauces. Maybe I'm a little homesick and need to plan my trip back upstate soon. Ya think?

So the countdown begins, cupboards are cleaned out, and the excitement for the arrival of a dishwasher in a home that never had one is more than words can express.