The Best of the Wurst | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 01 October 2015 13:33

100115fThis Sunday, thousands will head for San Leandro as the city hosts its entertainment event of the year – the Sausage and Suds Music Festival.

The annual festival, sponsored by the city’s Downtown Association features the Bay Area’s most popular bands, beers from dozens of breweries, and sausages from its world-famous hometown factories.

While most of us think of sausages as something to enjoy with fried eggs for breakfast or in a hot-dog bun, these Old World delicacies add a special touch to many dishes.


1 (16-ounce) package smoked sausage
1 small onion, chopped
1 medium-size green bell pepper, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup chicken broth
2 (3.5-ounce) bags quick-cooking brown rice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Chopped fresh parsley

Cut sausage into 1/2-inch slices. Saute in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned.

Remove sausage slices, and drain on paper towels, reserving 1 tablespoon of drippings in skillet.

Add bell pepper, onion, and garlic to skillet, and saute over medium-high heat 4 minutes or until tender. Add chicken broth, stirring to loosen particles from bottom of skillet, and bring to a boil.

Remove rice from cooking bag; add rice, sausage, salt, and pepper to skillet. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook 5 minutes or until rice is tender. Garnish with parsley if desired. Serves 4 to 6.


4 bratwursts
1 to 2 tablespoons flour
1 to 2 tablespoons butter
1 (12-ounce) bottle dark beer
3 to 4 tablespoons gingersnap crumbs
1 tablespoon grated onion
Salt and pepper
Several tablespoons concentrated beef stock
1 to 2 tablespoons lemon juice

Prick bratwurst with a fork to keep them from bursting and dredge them in flour. Melt butter in skillet and fry wurst on both sides. Remove them from skillet and set aside.

Pour beer into skillet and scrape off the browned particles clinging to the side and bottom of the skillet. Sprinkle in the gingersnap crumbs and grated onion and cook together for about 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt, pepper, a little beef stock and lemon juice, and cook for 2 or 3 minutes more. Reduce heat, returning the bratwurst to the skillet and cook until heated through. Makes 2 to 4 servings.


1 tablespoon olive oil
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 7-to-8 inch sweet sausage link
1 7-to-8 inch Italian hot and spicy sausage link
1 large (28 oz.) can of whole peeled tomatoes
1 (16 oz.) package spaghetti
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet on medium heat. Add the chopped onion and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the minced garlic and cook a minute more.

While onions cook, put a large pot of salted water on to boil for the pasta.

Remove onion and garlic from the pan and set aside. Remove sausage meat from the casings and add to the pan, breaking up the meat as you add it to the pan. Cook on medium to medium high heat until lightly browned.

Lightly purée the whole peeled canned tomatoes (and juices) in a blender, and add to the skillet with the sausage meat. Add the cooked onions and garlic.

Once the pasta water has come to a rolling boil, add the spaghetti pasta. Allow the water to return to a rolling boil. Cook, uncovered, with a vigorous boil, for as long as the directions on the pasta package say, usually about 9-12 minutes. When pasta is cooked but still a little firm, remove the pot from the heat. Drain the pasta and place it in a serving bowl.

Serve immediately. Toss with the sauce and garnish with grated Parmesan cheese. Serves 3 or 4.


1 large onion, quartered and sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large apples, peeled, cored, and diced
2 cups apple juice
1 tablespoon vinegar
4 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 pounds cold pack sauerkraut, rinsed and drained
2 pounds smoked sausage
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon of caraway seeds, or to taste, optional

Heat oven to 425°F.

In a large ovenproof sauté pan or Dutch oven over medium heat, sauté the onion and sliced sausages in olive oil until onion is golden and sausage is lightly browned, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the apples and sauté for 1 minute longer. Add apple juice, vinegar, brown sugar, sauerkraut, and pepper. Add caraway seeds, if using.

Cover and bake for 1 hour. Serve with crusty rolls or biscuits and a tossed salad. Serves 8 to 10.


One Dish Meals for Fall Dining | Print |  E-mail
Wednesday, 30 September 2015 15:25

092415fThere was a time when the casserole was the heart and mainstay of home cooking. Easy to prepare, the one-dish meal — baked in the oven and served in the pot in which it was cooked — took only a few ingredients, but yielded a rich, deep and well-rounded collaboration of tastes.

Perhaps because it was simple to make and often used such common basics as Campbell’s Soup and Bisquick, more sophisticated ingredients with exotic names began assuming undue importance in the kitchen and casseroles began to disappear.

But today, with the realization that vegetables, potatoes and pasta are essential components of our diets, the casserole is being welcomed back to the supper table in style.


2 pounds beef chuck steak, cubed
6 slices bacon, chopped
2 carrots, sliced
4 large tomatoes, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups red wine
2 cups beef stock
2 tablespoons tomato paste
Chopped parsley
Olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper

Add oil to a large skillet and cook bacon until brown and crispy; remove from pan then set aside.

Add garlic and onion to skillet and cook until onions are soft, remove onions and garlic mixture from pan then set aside.

Add beef cubes to pan then brown on all sides. Sprinkle the flour over the beef and cook for 1 more minute. Remove beef and set it aside. Note do not overcrowd the pan, if needed you can do it first with half the amount of beef then do this step twice.

Pour 1 cup of wine into the pan and bring it to a boil to deglaze. Return the beef, bacon, onion mixture to the pan.

Add the stock, remaining wine, tomatoes, carrots and tomato paste. Bring it to a boil then transfer it into a casserole.

Bake in a 320°F preheated oven for 2 hours.

Remove from oven then season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, garnish with chopped parsley then serve. Yields 4 to 6 servings.


1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup chopped onion
3 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup milk
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh pepper
1/2 pound fresh spinach, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 pound bacon slices
1/4 cup dried bread crumbs

Butter a 1-1/2 quart casserole. Sprinkle chopped onion in dish. Add corn, sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and dash of pepper.

Mix eggs with milk and pour over the corn. In another bowl, add vinegar, salt and pepper to chopped spinach and toss until well-seasoned.

Place spinach mixture on top of corn. Sprinkle with cheese. Cover with bacon slices.

Top with bread crumbs and bake in preheated 375°F oven for 45 minutes.


3/4 cup evaporated milk
2 cups soft bread cubes
1/4 cup chopped onion
2 pounds lean ground beef
1-1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1-1/2 cups frozen mixed vegetables, thawed

Pour milk over bread cubes and let stand until milk is absorbed. Stir in onion, ground beef, salt, eggs, and dry mustard; blend well. Stir in vegetables. Mix and shape into a loaf. Bake in loaf pan at 350° for 1-1/2 hours.

Cool for 5 minutes before turning out of pan. Serve with mashed potatoes and gravy.

Serves 6 to 8.


8 ounces wide egg noodles
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
1 teaspoon dill weed
1 can condensed cream of chicken soup
1-1/3 cups skim milk
1 (12-1/2-ounce) can water-pack tuna drained
Pepper to taste
2/3 cup grated part-skim Mozarella cheese

Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 7x11-inch baking dish with non- stick spray. Set aside.

Cook noodles in boiling water for 5 minutes, drain and set aside. Heat oil in large skillet. Add onions and sauté until limp. Remove from heat, stir in dill and soup, and gradually stir in milk until smooth. Add tuna chunks and pepper to taste. Stir in noodles and toss well to coat.

Pour into prepared baking dish, top with cheese and paprika and bake for 20 minutes. Serves 6.


Though Not Pretty, Spuds are Delicious, Nutritious | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 17 September 2015 14:24

091715fEach of us eats an average of 135 pounds of potatoes a year and though they have come to epitomize dull and boring – as in “couch potato,” they’re actually good for us!

A medium-size potato contains only about 110 calories (the same amount of pasta or rice has 400). It contains no fat, no cholesterol and is low in sodium and provides 50 percent of the daily recommended allowance of vitamin C and  almost 3 grams of dietary fiber.

Most of the nutrients in potatoes are in or near the skin, so it makes sense to eat the skin of a baked potato or, if you’re boiling it, leave the skin on.


3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
2 cups milk
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
5 cups thinly sliced peeled potatoes (about 6)
1/2 cup chopped onion

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a large saucepan, melt butter over low heat. Stir in flour, salt and pepper until smooth. Gradually add milk. Bring to a boil; cook and stir 2 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat; stir in cheese until melted. Add potatoes and onion.

Transfer to a greased 2-quart baking dish. Cover and bake 1 hour. Uncover; bake 30-40 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Yield: 6-8 servings.


3 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon flour
4 medium-sized potatoes, peeled and sliced
1 medium onion, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
Salt and pepper
1/3 cup Sauterne or other white dinner wine
1/3 cup chicken or beef broth
1/2 teaspoon thyme or marjoram, minced
1 tablespoon parsley, minced

Melt butter in heavy skillet. Mix in flour. Brown quickly.

Add potatoes, onion, garlic, salt and pepper. Fry, turning often, until slightly brown. Add wine, broth and thyme. Cover tightly. Simmer until potatoes are tender and liquid is absorbed. Add parsley. Mix well. Yields 4 servings.


1-1/2 pounds red-skinned potatoes
3 tablespoons olive oil
1-1/2 teaspoons dried rosemary
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat a baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

Wash potatoes and cut into 1/2 inch pieces. Dry each piece well. Place in a large bowl and toss with olive oil and rosemary. Arrange in a single layer in the prepared dish. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Bake for 25 minutes, or until tender and slightly crispy. Serves 4 to 6.


4 large baking potatoes
2⁄3 cup butter
2⁄3 cup flour
8 cups milk (you may need more to thin)
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup sour cream
6 green onions, chopped
14 slices bacon, cooked till crisp and crumbled
2 cups sharp Cheddar cheese, grated

Heat oven to 350°F and bake the potatoes until fork tender, about 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes. (This can be done beforehand).

Melt butter in a medium saucepan. Slowly blend in flour with a wire whisk until thoroughly blended. Cook the roux (flour in butter) until a very pale golden. Gradually add milk to the roux, garlic and season to taste, whisking constantly.

Cut potatoes in half, scoop out the interior and set aside. Chop up half the potato peels and discard the remainder.

When milk mixture is very hot, whisk in potato. Add green onion and potato peels. Whisk well, add sour cream and crumbled bacon. Heat thoroughly. Add cheese a little at a time until all is melted in.

Set aside a bit of the bacon, green onions and cheese to sprinkle on top for a nice appearance. Yields 8 servings.


3-3/4 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed
6 garlic cloves, halved
8 ounces reduced-fat sour cream
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese, divided

Place potatoes and garlic in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and cook for 10 to 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Drain.

In a large bowl, mash potatoes. Stir in the sour cream, thyme, salt, pepper and 1 cup cheese. Transfer to a 3-quart baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake, uncovered, at 350°F for 10 to 15 minutes or until heated through. Serves 12.


Rosh Hashanah – Sweet Expectations for the Jewish New Year | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 10 September 2015 14:31

091015fThe Jewish New Year begins at sundown this Sunday. Unlike Passover, where bitter foods are prepared in commemoration of hard times, the Rosh Hashanah table is laden with delicacies representing optimism for a sweet future.

No sour or bitter dishes have a place on this joyous table. Instead, dishes abound with honey, raisins and apples – all seasonal reminders of hope for the coming year.


3/4 cupwalnut halves
Butter for pan
1-1/2 cups flour, plus more
1-1/8 cups honey, divided use
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
3 large eggs, at room temp.
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in center.

Spread walnut halves in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and toast in oven until fragrant, tossing occasionally, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer nuts to a plate, let cool, then pulse in a food processor until finely chopped, about 10 times. Set aside.

Butter and flour an 8-1/2 inch spring-form pan; set aside. In a large bowl, combine 1 cup honey and applesauce; whisk until honey is mostly dissolved. Add eggs, and whisk until fully combined.

Into a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, salt, and ginger. Stir into honey mixture. Using a rubber spatula, fold in walnuts.

Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake cake until golden brown on top and a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 55 minutes.

Transfer pan to a wire rack; let cool until sides of cake begin to pull away from pan, about 15 minutes. Remove cake from pan, and place on a serving plate. While cake is still warm, use an offset spatula to gently spread remaining honey on top as a thin glaze. Serve warm. Yields about 10 servings.


4 to 5 green apples, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup orange juice concentrate
1 teaspoon ginger
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves
3/4 cup canola oil
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
Pinch salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 large or 2 small eggs

Preheat oven to 350°F. Toss apples, honey, brown sugar, orange juice concentrate and spices. Place the mixture in a 9x13-inch pan and set aside.

In a separate bowl, mix the oil, sugar, flour, baking powder, salt, vanilla and eggs to form a thick batter. Drop by spoonfuls onto apple mixture. Bake 45 minutes at 350°F, or until top is nicely browned.

Makes 8 servings.


1 cup grated carrots
1 cup peeled and shredded potatoes
1 cup sugar
1 cup raisins
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 cup white sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

In a large mixing bowl, combine carrots, potatoes, sugar, raisins, flour, baking soda, ground cinnamon, allspice, and ground cloves.

Transfer mixture to a clean 1 pound coffee can. Secure wax paper over the top and place the filled can in a large pot with 2 to 3 inches of water. Cover the pot and bring the water to a simmer. Steam the cake for 2 hours. Serve warm.

To make the buttery sauce, combine butter or margarine, cream, sugar, and vanilla in a medium-size pot. Heat until the mixture is liquid. Spoon mixture over the warm carrot pudding to serve. Yields 7 servings.


1-1⁄2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1⁄2 cup vegetable oil plus extra for greasing the pan
1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper
6 ounces fine noodles, like vermicelli
6 ounces wide noodles, like fettuccine
4 large eggs, well beaten

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Place 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup oil in a heavy 6-quart saucepan. Stir constantly over medium heat until caramelized, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Let harden and cool for 15 minutes.

Pour 5-1/2 cups water into pan with the sugar mixture and bring to boil.

Add salt, pepper and remaining sugar. When water boils add noodles. Cook until water is almost evaporated.

Cool slightly and stir in eggs. Mix well and pour into a greased 10-inch round baking pan.

Bake kugel for 1 hour. Run a knife around kugel, turn out onto a plate and serve. Yields 12 servings.


It’s Picnic Time! | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 03 September 2015 11:26

090315fLabor Day marks the unofficial end of vacation season for most of us. It’s a great time to get out with family and friends for a picnic in the park before the back-to-business fall pace sets in.


Peel husks back, but do not remove. Using your fingers, remove silk from corn and pull husks back up around corn. In a large pan, cover corn (husks on) with cold water. Soak for at least 1 hour. Drain, shaking corn to remove excess water. Cover corn as much as possible with husks. If necessary, tie the tips of the husks together with wet kitchen string.

Grill corn (with husks) on an uncovered grill directly over medium-hot coals about 25 minutes or until tender, turning several times. Carefully remove the husks and strings.

Meanwhile, melt some margarine or butter with a little lemon juice, and thyme. Brush mixture over the corn before serving.


12 frankfurters or turkey sausages
1 dozen hot dog buns
Favorite mustards
Other condiments (sliced tomatoes, pickle relish, etc.)

Pierce uncooked sausages all over with a fork or cut several shallow crosswise slits in each uncooked sausage.

In a grill with a cover, arrange preheated coals around a drip pan. Test for medium heat above the pan. Grill franks (or other cooked sausages) on grill rack above the drip pan for 10 minutes or until brown and a thermometer registers 165°F.  Place in buns and top with desired mustards and condiments.


1 cup packaged elbow macaroni
1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
1-1/2 cups fully cooked ham (8 ounces), cubed
1 cup Monterey Jack cheese, cut into cubes (4ounces)
1 cup frozen peas
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
2 tablespoons diced pimiento
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sweet pickle relish
1 to 2  tablespoons milk
Dash pepper, to taste
8 cherry tomatoes, halved
Fresh parsley sprig (optional)

Cook pasta according to package directions, Drain and rinse with cold water. Drain again.

In a large mixing bowl combine pasta, ham, cheese, peas, celery, onion, and pimiento. Toss gently to mix.

For dressing, in a small mixing bowl stir together mayonnaise, pickle relish, milk, and pepper. Pour dressing over pasta mixture. Toss to coat. Cover and chill overnight. Just before serving, stir in milk, if necessary. Spoon pasta mixture into a serving bowl. Arrange cherry tomato halves around the edge of bowl. If desired, garnish with parsley. Makes 4 main-dish servings.


12 ounces tuna, packed in oil, drained
2 stalks celery, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
1 apple, such as Gala, peeled, cored, chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
3 tablespoons light mayonnaise
2 tablespoons freshly chopped basil leaves
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground pepper
8 slices fresh sourdough

In a medium bowl, combine tuna, celery, apple, mayonnaise, basil, and lemon juice; mix well. Season with salt and pepper.

On a work surface, divide tuna salad among 4 slices bread; top with remaining 4 slices bread.


Starting the School Day Off Right | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 27 August 2015 14:12

082715fBreakfast has long been known as the most important meal of the day, and that’s especially true for youngsters.

Skipping the first meal of the day increases the chances of becoming obese and eventually developing such diseases as diabetes and heart disease.

In 2005, nearly a third of California’s school kids were considered overweight and despite heavy media coverage, the message doesn’t seem to be getting through.

Of course, some breakfast foods can be the villains themselves. So just what constitutes a good breakfast?

In baked goods, 100% whole grains are superior to white flour products. Fruits are far better than fruit juices, especially the so-called “juice cocktails” which often contain more sugar than a bottle of soda.

Using only lean meats, “balanced” vegetable-oil margarines, low-fat mayonnaise, yogurt and milk, and substituting egg whites or egg substitutes in recipes calling for whole eggs, are important ways to greatly reduce the intake of fats and cholesterol, without sacrificing any flavor.

Here are some breakfasts to consider.


2 egg whites
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 cup nonfat milk
2/3 cup unprocessed wheat bran
2/3 cup dry quick-cooking oats
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat a nonstick waffle iron. Beat egg whites until they form soft peaks. Set aside.

Combine sugar and oil and stir until completely smooth. Add milk and mix well. In another bowl, combine bran, oats, baking powder and salt and mix well. Pour liquid ingredients into dry ingredients and mix until just thoroughly moistened. Do not over mix. Fold in beaten egg whites.

Spray preheated waffle iron with nonstick vegetable coating. Use 1/2 cup batter for each waffle. Cook until steam stops escaping from waffle iron. (It is essential to use a nonstick waffle iron for this recipe because of the low fat content of the waffle.)

Per waffle: 149 cal, 5 g fat, 1 mg chol, 458 mg sodium


3/4 cup fat-free egg substitute
1/2 cup skim milk
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
8 slices Italian bread
2 cups raspberries or other berries
1/4 cup maple syrup

In a large shallow bowl, whisk together the egg substitute, milk, cinnamon and vanilla. One by one, dip the bread slices in the batter, turning to coat both sides.

Coat a large no-stick frying pan or griddle with no-stick spray. Place over medium heat until warm. Working in batches, add the slices in a single layer and brown on both sides.

(Keep finished pieces warm in an oven set at 150°F until all the pieces are done.)

Serve topped with the berries and drizzled with the syrup. Makes 4 servings.

Per serving: 282 cal., 0.4g. fat (1% of cal.), 4.4g. dietary fiber, 1 mg. chol., 383mg. sodium.


For each serving:
1/2 cup nonfat or low-fat plain yogurt
1/2 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen (thawed)
1/4 cup diced apple
1/4 cup diced banana
1/4 cup unsweetened muesli (see note below)
1-2 teaspoons honey or pure maple syrup

Note: Muesli is a combination of uncooked rolled oats, fruit, nuts and seeds. Look for it with other cereals or in the bulk section in well-stocked supermarkets or natural-foods stores.

Stir together yogurt, blueberries, apple, banana, muesli and honey (or maple syrup) to taste in a bowl.

Per serving: 291 cal; 4g fat; 2mg cholesterol; 60g carb; 9g added sugars; 12g protein; 7g fiber; 96mg sodium; 536mg potassium


3 cups water
1-1/3 cups rolled oats
1/4 cup chopped dates
2 tablespoons ground almonds
2 tablespoons honey
1 large banana, thinly sliced
1-2 cups skim milk

In a 2-quart saucepan over medium heat, bring the water, oats, dates, almonds and honey to a boil. Simmer for 5 minutes, or until thick. Serve with the bananas and milk. Makes 4 servings.

Per serving: 229 cal., 3.3g. fat (12% of cal.), 2.9g. dietary fiber, 1 mg. chol., 39mg. sodium.


1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 cup nonfat plain yogurt
1/4 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups diced fresh or canned pineapple chunks, drained and chopped
1/4 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat an 8-inch-square baking pan with cooking spray.

Whisk whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl.

Whisk egg, yogurt, oil and vanilla in a large bowl until smooth. Add the dry ingredients and stir with a rubber spatula until just blended. (Do not overmix.) Fold in pineapple. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan. Combine pecans and the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar in a small bowl. Sprinkle over the batter.

Bake the cake until the top is golden and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, 50 to 55 minutes. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for about 20 minutes. Serve warm. Yields 9 servings.

Per serving: 253cal; 9g fat; 24mg cholesterol; 38g carb; 5g protein; 2g fiber; 476mg sodium

Cool Suppers | Print |  E-mail
Wednesday, 19 August 2015 20:37

082015fThis past weekend is a reminder of things to come in the East Bay during the late summer months.

Here are some recipes worth trying for cool suppers.


For each sandwich:
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 crusty roll, split
1 teaspoon mango chutney
1 ounce thinly sliced sharp
Cheddar cheese
3 ounces thinly sliced roast beef
4 sprigs stemmed watercress

In a small bowl, whisk mayonnaise with Dijon mustard; spread on roll. On bottom slice, spread mango chutney.

Layer with cheddar cheese, roast beef, and watercress. Refrigerate until ready to serve, up to overnight.


1 ripe avocado, peeled, pitted, and diced
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
8 (8-inch) flour tortillas, warmed
2 tomatoes, diced
1 cucumber, sliced
1 green bell pepper, cut into strips
1 head lettuce, chopped
1 (8-ounce) package fresh Mozzarella cheese, sliced

Prepare spread: mash diced avocado, mayonnaise, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, and cayenne pepper in a bowl with a fork until well blended.

Assemble wraps: spread tortillas with a layer of avocado spread. Place diced tomatoes, cucumber slices, bell pepper strips, lettuce, and Mozzarella cheese slices onto each wrap, leaving about 2 inches of space at the bottom. Fold bottoms up. Roll tortillas over vegetables firmly to enclose fillings. Makes 8 wraps.


2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled, grated
1 clove garlic, sliced
2 pounds carrots, sliced
6 cups vegetable broth
Juice of 1 lime, plus lime wedges for garnish
1 cup plain yogurt (not nonfat)
Salt and black pepper

Warm oil in a pot over medium heat. Add onion; sauté until softened, 6 to 8 minutes. Add ginger and garlic; sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute. Raise heat to medium-high; stir in carrots. Pour broth into pot, cover and bring to a simmer. Remove cover, reduce heat to medium to maintain a simmer and cook until carrots are very tender, about 25 minutes. Remove soup from heat and let cool.

In batches, purée soup in a blender until smooth. Transfer to a large bowl, cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours.

Just before serving, stir in lime juice and yogurt. Season with salt and pepper. Serve chilled, garnished with lime wedges, if desired. Yields 8 one-cup servings.


1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup cider vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Dash of cayenne (optional)
6 cups coleslaw mix (1-pound bag)
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into matchsticks
1 cup pecans, toasted and chopped
1 cup raisins

In a large bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper, and cayenne, if using. Stir in the coleslaw mix, apples, pecans, and raisins.

Taste for seasoning and adjust with more salt and pepper if desired. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 4 hours before serving. Serves 8 to 10.


3 bacon strips, chopped
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
4 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (6-ounce) package fresh baby spinach
2 medium navel oranges, peeled and chopped
12 fresh strawberries
1 cup thinly sliced cucumber
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
1 medium carrot, shredded
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

In a small skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove to paper towels with a slotted spoon; drain.

In a small bowl, whisk the vinegar, honey, oil, mustard, pepper and salt. In a large bowl, combine the spinach, oranges, strawberries (cut into quarters), cucumber, onion and carrot. Pour dressing over salad; toss to coat. Sprinkle with walnuts and bacon. Serve immediately. Yields 8 servings.


1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (5 to 6 lemons)
1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar, to taste
1 cup crushed ice
4 cups water

Place all the ingredients in a blender and process until completely smooth. Serve over ice. Yields 1-1/2 quarts.


1 mango, peeled, seeded and diced
1 avocado - peeled, pitted, and diced
4 medium tomatoes, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/4 cup chopped red onion
3 tablespoons olive oil

In a medium bowl, combine the mango, avocado, tomatoes, jalapeno, cilantro, and garlic. Stir in the salt, lime juice, red onion, and olive oil.

To blend the flavors, refrigerate for about 30 minutes before serving. Serves 6.

Annual Zucchini Crop a Test of Creativity for Cooks | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 13 August 2015 08:00

081315fThe harvest starts out innocently enough – just a few tiny fingers of zucchini emerging at one time, orange blossoms still attached. But anyone who has grown zucchini can tell you the harvest is hard to keep up with. A few of the squash turn into a basket full, then into large bags full.

Fortunately there’s no shortage of zucchini recipes. And more are introduced each year at the popular Hayward Zucchini Festival which is being held this weekend. Here are some favorites.


2 medium zucchini, trimmed
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest
10 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
      finely chopped, plus extra for garnish
1 medium clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup all-purpose flour

Using the large holes of a box grater, grate zucchini into a medium bowl. Add salt, lemon zest, chopped parsley, garlic, pepper, and eggs. Mix well to combine. Slowly add flour, stirring so no lumps form.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat until oil sizzles when you drop a small amount of zucchini mixture into the pan. Carefully drop about 2 tablespoons zucchini mixture into pan; repeat, spacing fritters a few inches apart.

Cook fritters until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium. Turn fritters, and continue cooking until golden, 2 to 3 minutes more. Transfer fritters to a plate; set aside in a warm place. Cook remaining zucchini mixture, adding more oil to pan if necessary. Garnish with parsley sprigs and lemon wedges, if desired. Serves 4.


2 tablespoons butter
2 medium zucchini cut into 1/8-inch slices
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 medium onion, chopped
1/4 cup of fresh parsley
3 tablespoons of butter
3 tablespoons of flour
1 (10-3/4 ounce) can chicken broth
1/4 cup of whipping cream
Pinch of pepper

In 3 quart saucepan melt 2 tablespoons butter; add zucchini, onions, mushrooms and parsley. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until vegetables are crisply tender (6-8 minutes). Meanwhile, in 2 quart saucepan melt 3 tablespoons butter over medium heat; stir in flour until smooth and bubbly (1 minute). Add chicken broth; continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until soup is thickened (5-7 minutes). Stir in cream, pepper and zucchini mixture. Continue cooking until heated through about 5 to 6 minutes


1-1/4 pound of zucchini, cubed
1/2 pound Monterey Jack
1/2 pound Sharp Cheddar cheese
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 tablespoons flour
4 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup of milk
1/2 teaspoon salt, optional
1 (4-ounce) can green chilies
3 tablespoons butter

Boil zucchini in salted water 5 minutes. Drain and cool. Mix remaining ingredients (except butter) with zucchini. Pour into a 9-inch square pan. Dot with butter. Bake at 350ºF for 30-35 minutes. Serves 6.


1 teaspoon soft margarine
2 small onions, chopped
4 small (6 inch) zucchini, thinly sliced
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
Freshly ground pepper

In a large nonstick skillet, melt margarine over medium heat, add onions and cook, stirring, until softened. Add zucchini and cook for 2 minutes. Add tomatoes and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until zucchini is tender-crisp. Season to taste with pepper. Serves 4.


1/2 cup shredded zucchini
1-1/2 cups flour
1 cup oatmeal
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 egg
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 tablespoons molasses
1/4 cup chopped nuts

Wash, but don’t peel zucchini. Use the coarsest surface of a grater to shred the squash. If the shreds are very watery, place in a colander to drain while preparing the batter.

In a large bowl, stir together dry ingredients. Make a well in the center and add the milk, egg, oil and molasses.

Mix just until combined. Gently stir in the zucchini and nuts.

Fill well-greased muffin tin 2/3 full. Bake at 425°F for 15 minutes or until done. Serve hot with butter, if desired.


1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 packed teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup flour, spooned and leveled
1/2 cup fine cornmeal
1 medium zucchini, finely grated

Preheat oven to 325°F. In a large bowl, mix butter and sugar with a wooden spoon until pale and fluffy. Stir in vanilla, lemon zest, and salt. Add flour and cornmeal and mix until mixture is crumbly. Add zucchini and stir until a thick dough forms.

Drop dough by rounded tablespoons, 2 inches apart, onto two parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake until cookies are light golden brown at edges, 25 to 30 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through. Let cool completely on wire racks. Yields about 2 dozen cookies.


You Say Tomato... | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 06 August 2015 14:16

080615fWhether they’re from your back yard or the local market, August is the best time to enjoy garden-fresh tomatoes.

There are thousands of ways to fix tomatoes, but they are probably at their tastiest when eaten raw, thickly sliced or roughly chunked and dressed with olive oil, salt, pepper, a little fresh basil and maybe a sprinkling of vinegar.

But cooking tomatoes concentrates flavors and, surprisingly, makes them even more healthy. Cook them up with herbs and garlic for an unbeatable tomato sauce. Or slice them thick and sauté them in olive oil, then pour eggs and chopped basil over the browned tomatoes.

To seed tomatoes, slice them in half and squeeze, just like an orange, into a strainer over a bowl to catch the juice, which can be added back to the dish.

To peel a tomato, dunk it into boiling water for about a minute, then plunge it into ice water for a few seconds. Drain, then peel and core using a paring knife.

Or, spear the stem end with a long-handled fork and slowly rotate the tomato over an open flame until the skin chars, blisters and splits. Then plunge into ice water and peel as above.


2 pounds assorted ripe tomatoes
12 to 14 slices fresh Mozzarella cheese
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon honey
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 to 3 sprigs marjoram
10 to 12 basil leaves

Slice large tomatoes; cut small tomatoes in halves. Arrange on a platter with cheese.

In a small bowl, whisk salt, vinegar and honey until salt is dissolved; whisk in olive oil. Spoon over tomatoes.

Strip marjoram leaves from sprigs onto salad. With kitchen scissors, snip basil leaves over tomatoes. Sprinkle with salt to taste. Makes 8 servings.


1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups water
4 pounds tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and cut into pieces
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
6 whole cloves
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup medium cream

Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the onion and toss to coat. Stir over medium heat until the onion is tender. Sprinkle on the flour and continue stirring over medium heat until the mixture foams. Stir in the water and bring to a boil.

Measure out 3/4 cup of the tomato pieces and set aside. Add the remaining tomato pieces to the boiling mixture. Stir in the brown sugar and cloves. Reduce the heat and cook, uncovered, at the gentle bubble for 30 minutes.

Transfer to a food mill and force through. Return to the saucepan and stir in the reserved tomato pieces. Blend in the salt, pepper, and cream. Place soup over medium heat and warm gently, but do not boil. Yields 6 servings.


1-1/2 pounds tomatoes, coarsely chopped
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon minced parsley
Salt to taste
Pinch of hot red pepper flakes

Heat the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet over moderate heat. Add the onion and sauté until soft, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and parsley and sauté 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and season with salt and pepper flakes. Bring to a simmer.

Adjust heat to maintain a simmer and cook, stirring often, until the tomatoes collapse and form a thick sauce, about 10 minutes. Purée the sauce through a food mill into a clean bowl.

Return the sauce to the skillet and reheat gently. Taste and adjust seasonings. Yields enough for a pound of pasta.

Variations: Add 1/2 teaspoon of crushed fennel seed with the tomatoes. Or, add 8 to 10 fresh basil leaves, hand torn, when reheating the sauce. Or, stir in a little cream when reheating. Or, add finely minced anchovies, as many as you like, when reheating.


1 package macaroni & cheese, cooked according to package directions
4 large, fresh tomatoes
Salt and pepper to taste
4 slices bacon, fried, drained and crumbled
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons shredded cheddar cheese
2 teaspoons butter or margarine, melted

Hollow out tomatoes, leaving a 1/4-inch wall around sides and bottom. Salt and pepper insides of tomatoes. Place in 9-inch-round cake pan or pie plate to prevent tipping.

Combine hot macaroni and cheese, bacon and onion in medium bowl; fill tomatoes with mixture.

Combine bread crumbs, cheese and butter in small bowl; sprinkle mixture evenly on top of each tomato.

Bake in preheated 350-degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until cheese is melted. Serves 4.


6 tomatoes, red and yellow
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons chopped freshbasil
Fresh basil sprigs for garnish

Cut tomatoes in half; thread onto skewers, alternating colors. Brush with 1 tablespoon oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Grill, covered with grill lid, over medium heat (300°F to 350°F) 10 minutes, turning skewers often.

Combine remaining 2 tablespoons oil, vinegar, and basil; drizzle over kabobs. Garnish, if desired. Makes 6 servings.


Potato Salad – A Summer Staple | Print |  E-mail
Friday, 31 July 2015 10:43

073015fPotato salad is a summertime favorite, whether it is served at a picnic or for a Sunday night supper. And that big scoop of creamy, chunky goodness on your plate isn’t just “salad,” it’s a mound of emotion, reminding us of all the good times in our lives.

We think of it as an American original, so closely tied as it is to our red, white and blue celebrations. And in true American style, the variations are endless.

The best potatoes for salads are white, Yukon gold, fingerlings and red bliss. Russets can be used, but they are starchy and tend to fall apart.

Whether cooking whole potatoes or in quarters, make sure they are all about the same size so they cook evenly. Potatoes often cook faster than recipes say.


5 potatoes
3 eggs
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup sweet pickle relish
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon celery salt
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
Ground black pepper to taste
1/4 cup mayonnaise

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes. Drain, cool, peel and chop.

Place eggs in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring water to a boil; cover, remove from heat, and let eggs stand in hot water for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from hot water, cool, peel and chop.

In a large bowl, combine the potatoes, eggs, celery, onion, relish, garlic salt, celery salt, mustard, pepper and mayonnaise. Mix together well and refrigerate until chilled. Serves 8.


1/2 teaspoon powdered mustard
2 teaspoons water
4 cups cold, diced cooked potatoes
1/2 cup peeled, diced cucumber
1 tablespoon instant minced onion
1-1/2teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon celery seed
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 large hard-cooked eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon cider vinegar

Mix mustard with water and let stand for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, separate the egg yolks from the whites and dice the whites. Combine the egg whites with the potatoes, cucumber, onion, salt, celery seed and pepper.

Mash 3 of the egg yolks and blend with the mustard, sour cream, mayonnaise and vinegar.

Add egg yolk mixture to potato mixture, mix lightly. Put remaining egg yolk through a sieve to garnish salad.

Serve on lettuce. Serves 6.


2 pounds red potatoes, cut into 1-inch chunks
2 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon anchovy paste or 2 anchovies
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 large garlic clove, crushed
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
Romaine lettuce leaves

Place potatoes and enough water to cover in 2-quart pan over high heat and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 20 minutes until potatoes are fork-tender. Drain.

In food processor or blender, blend lemon juice, anchovies, Parmesan, mustard, garlic and pepper. Gradually add olive oil until mixture is smooth. Toss potatoes with dressing and parsley.

To serve, arrange on lettuce leaves. Serves 6.


1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup minced shallots
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1 tablespoon plus 1/4 cup chopped fresh chives, divided use
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons honey
2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
Salt and pepper to taste
3 pounds small, red-skinned potatoes, quartered
12 Romaine lettuce leaves
8 bacon slices, cooked, drained and crumbled
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
1 hard-boiled egg, grated

Whisk oil, vinegar, shallots, parsley, 1 tablespoon chives, mustard, honey and lemon peel in large bowl until well blended. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper.

Cook potatoes in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 10 minutes. Drain; add warm potatoes to dressing and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate.

Arrange lettuce around edge of platter; mound potato salad in center. Sprinkle with bacon, blue cheese, egg and remaining 1/4 cup of chives. Serves 8.


Too Much Garlic? Don’t Say That in Gilroy! | Print |  E-mail
Tuesday, 28 July 2015 08:44

072315fYou have to wonder about people who don’t like garlic. What can be more tantalizing than the scent of sautéed garlic, or the buttery aroma of roasted garlic? Just ask the folks in Gilroy, who turned what was once a culinary outcast into a world famous celebration which has raised millions for local charities.

For details on the 37th Annual Gilroy Garlic Festival, which starts this Friday, visit

Here is a sampling of the hundreds of recipes the festival has spawned.


15 (or so) chicken wings or drumettes
3 heads (bulbs) garlic
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
10-15 drops Tabasco sauce
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup bread crumbs
1 teaspoon black pepper
Chopped parsley

Disjoint chicken wings, discarding tips. Rinse and pat dry. Separate garlic cloves and peel. Place garlic, olive oil and Tabasco in blender or food processor and purée.

Combine cheese, bread crumbs and pepper in plastic  bag. Dip wings in garlic purée and roll in bread crumb mixture, 1 at a time, coating thoroughly. Coat shallow nonstick baking pan with oil and add wings in single layer. Drizzle with remaining purée and sprinkle with any remaining bread crumb mixture.

Bake at 375°F for 45 to 60 minutes or until brown and crisp. Sprinkle with chopped parsley. Serves 6.


1 pound boiling potatoes, scrubbed
6 cloves fresh garlic, thinly sliced
1 cup milk
1⁄4 cup bread crumbs
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoons of butter

Preheat oven to 380°F. Butter a 9-inch pie plate.

Slice potatoes thinly. Arrange a layer of potatoes, garlic slices, Parmesan and slices of butter.

Repeat using the rest of the ingredients (other than the milk), saving some of the cheese and the butter.

Heat the milk and pour over top of the potatoes. Top with bread crumbs and remaining cheese and butter.

Bake for 1 hour, until the potatoes are tender and top has turned golden brown. Makes 4 servings.


4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
12 garlic cloves, peeled and lightly crushed
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 (28-ounce) can Italian tomatoes, seeded and chopped, juice reserved
1/2 bouillon cube (optional)
1 pound uncooked penne
Grated Parmesan cheese

Place olive oil and garlic cloves in a medium sauté pan. Cook over medium-low heat until the garlic is soft and a light golden-brown. Stir frequently to prevent sticking. Add the tomatoes and their juices, salt and pepper and the bouillon cube (if using). Cook until a sauce forms.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta in abundant salted, boiling water according to package directions. Drain well and place in a serving bowl. Add the sauce and toss well. Serve with grated cheese on the side. Serves 4.


1 pound frozen french fries
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoons finely minced garlic
2 teaspoons finely minced parsley
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt

Prepare french fries according to package directions (bake or fry, your choice!). 2 Combine remaining ingredients in a small bowl. 3 Pour cooked french fries in a large bowl and pour garlic mixture over. Toss well; add additional salt if desired, and serve! Yields about 4 servings.


10 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
5 cups of beef broth
1 cup of dry Sherry
1⁄4 cup of olive oil
French bread, sliced and toasted
Grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper

Sauté garlic in the olive oil until golden. Heat the beef broth with Sherry. When the broth reaches the boiling point, add garlic and the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste; then simmer for about 30 minutes.

Strain out the garlic and reheat.

Sprinkle toasted French bread slices generously with Parmesan cheese, then place them in a 425°F oven for about 3-4 minutes.

Put hot toast in the bottom of soup dishes; then pour the soup over top.

Yields 4 servings.


26 cloves fresh garlic, peeled
2 tablespoons salt
6 whole cloves, crushed
6 allspice berries, crushed
2 bay leaves, crumbled
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup dry red wine
1 cup water
1 lemon sliced
4 pounds thick country-style spareribs, cut in serving-size pieces

Crush 6 garlic cloves with salt in a mortar or with the flat of a knife on a board. Transfer paste to a bowl and work in cloves, allspice, bay leaves, paprika, cayenne, wine and water. Add lemon slices.

Place ribs in a shall dish and add marinade, turning ribs to coat them all. Marinate for at least 2 hours, and preferably longer.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Remove ribs from marinade and place in a shallow baking dish. Add the remaining 20 cloves of garlic and 1 cup of marinade to the pan.

Cover and bake for 1-1/2 hours or until tender, basting every 30 minutes. Bake uncovered for the final 30 minutes. Yields 4 to 6 servings.


Summer and Smoke | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 16 July 2015 14:23

071615fWhat other than barbecue sauce inspires such raw creativity, passionate de-

bate and celebration of regional differences?

There’s no limit to the variety. There are sweet sauces, mild sauces, thick sauces, raw sauces, ketchup-based sauces, sauces that burn the tongue...


1 cup ketchup
2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons dark amber maple syrup
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1-1⁄2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 teaspoon smoked sweet paprika
1 teaspoon coarse black pepper, or to taste

Add all ingredients to a small saucepan and place over medium heat. When it begins to steam, reduce heat to medium low and cook for about 20 minutes, or until slightly thickened and flavors are combined. Yields about 1 cup of sauce.


4 tablespoons butter (or olive oil)
1/2 grated onion
1 (15-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1/2 cup cider vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup molasses
1-4 chipotle chiles in adobo (depending on how hot you want your sauce)
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh sage
Salt to taste

Note: Use gloves, or a plastic bag to protect your hands when handling the hot chiles in adobo. Wash hands thoroughly after handling and avoid touching your face or eyes for several hours.

Heat the butter in a heavy pot over medium-high heat until if froths (or heat vegetable oil until hot), then add the grated onion. Sprinkle a little salt over the onion. Sauté until the onion just begins to color, about 4-5 minutes.

While the onions are cooking, finely chop the chipotle chiles in adobo. They are hot, so start with one chile. You can add as many more as you want later.

Add the chipotle to the onions, then add the tomatoes, vinegar, molasses, sugar, liquid smoke, and chopped sage. Stir to combine and let this simmer for 5 minutes. Taste it and add salt and more chipotle if you want.

Simmer the sauce gently, uncovered, for 1 hour. Before serving, taste one more time for salt and chile. Yields 2 cups.


2 cups tomato sauce or ketchup
1/2 cup apple juice
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup brown sugar
5 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon chipotle powder (optional)
4 finely chopped garlic cloves
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon liquid smoke, or to taste
Salt to taste
Cayenne to taste

Heat the butter in a pot over medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the onion and sauté until it begins to brown. Add the garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes.

Pour in the remaining ingredients and stir well to combine. Simmer slowly for at least 30 minutes, and up to 2 hours. Adjust the heat and salt levels with the cayenne and salt right before you plan to use this sauce, which is great on ribs, chicken and pork shoulder.

Makes about 2-1/2 cups, enough for 4 racks of ribs.


1/4 cup butter
2 onions, finely chopped
2 or 3 cloves garlic, minced
1 stalk celery, minced
1 small green pepper, minced
1 (28-ounce) can stewed tomatoes
1 (12-ounce) can tomato paste
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1 tablespoon salt
2 bay leaves
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup dark molasses
1 tablespoon Tabasco
1 tablespoon liquid smoke
Juice of 1 lemon

Melt butter in heavy pot over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, celery and green pepper. Cook until limp and tender, but not brown.

Add tomatoes, tomato paste, dry mustard, salt, bay leaves, vinegar, molasses, Tabasco, liquid smoke and lemon juice. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Remove bay leaves. Process in a blender or food processor.

Store in refrigerator. Makes 1-1/2 quarts.


1 (14-ounce) bottle ketchup
1/2 cup water
2 teaspoons molasses
2 teaspoons Creole or whole grain mustard
2 teaspoons finely chopped garlic
1/4 cup chopped onions
2 tablespoons firmly packed light brown sugar
Dash hot pepper sauce
Dash Worcestershire sauce
Pinch salt
Pinch cayenne
2 teaspoons peeled and grated fresh ginger
Pinch ground black pepper

In a food processor fitted with a metal blade, combine all of the ingredients. Process until smooth, about 15 seconds. Scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula. Pulse 2 or 3 times. Refrigerate overnight before using. Yields 2 cups.


1 teaspoon crushed garlic
3/4 cup white vinegar
1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
1/4 cup dark molasses
1/4 cup light molasses
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons orange marmalade
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon celery seed
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon liquid smoke

In a medium saucepan, combine all ingredients except liquid smoke. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer gently, uncovered, for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Add liquid smoke and stir. Yields about 2 cups.




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