Archive for November, 2010

Easy Homemade English Muffins

November 20, 2010

There is nothing quite like mornings in the center of Rincon, Puerto Rico.  The neighbor is singing in the shower, some romantic Latin tune, the sun is shining, the birds are chirping, people are passing on their way home to enjoy coffee and pastry from the panaderias.   Breakfast on the veranda with eggs Benedict, fresh papaya with a squeeze of lime and a cup of robust Puerto Rican coffee simply adds deliciousness to the morning.    more

Marinated Turkey with Caribbean Flavors

November 14, 2010

Marinating a turkey was unheard of in my growing-up years but thankfully times have changed and our culinary methods are far more eclectic these days.  There’s a plethora of marinade recipes available from every region of the world so you only need find one that suits your stuffing and your tastes.  This particular recipe is a tweaked version of a Cuban marinade I’ve used on roasted chicken.  It’s packed with flavor and compliments my bread stuffing with chorizo and pine nuts.   more

Vienna Pork Schnitzel

November 5, 2010

One of the best selling lunch specials at Coco’s, my restaurant in Tonga, was this classic schnitzel.  I would buy pork chops and remove the bone, then pound them to perfect escallops.  The breading included Parmesan cheese in the crumbs and once breaded the cutlets rested on a rack until ready to fry to order.  70/30 butter to oil was used for a very quick saute and then lemon was added to the drippings.  Capers topped the schnitzel to add a briny bite that perfectly balanced the starch of the crumbs and sweetness of the pork.  Schnitzel and the house potato salad never failed to boost lunch receipts on that tiny island with 65,000 inhabitants, 2200 of which were expats mainly of European descent. My dear friend, Peter, a retired exec-chef from Vienna, gave me this recipe and he never failed to show up for this lunch special.   Our house-potato-salad and a Linzer Tort completed the meal.   more

Sweet Potato Gratin with Gorgonzola

November 5, 2010

Grandma Chapman mashed sweet potatoes with cinnamon, butter and milk then topped the dish with marshmellows before baking.  Mom just opened a can, sprinkled brown sugar on them and baked marshmellows on the top.  Thanksgiving just wasn’t complete without sweet potatoes but boy they were neglected the rest of the year.  Thank goodness we have evolved!    more

Celebrity Chef Tour in Las Vegas Nov 15th

November 5, 2010

Rick Moonen of RM Seafood Restaurant, at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino, will host the Celebrity Chef  Tour on November 15th.  I worked directly above the RM and have tasted some of Rick’s sustainable seafood dishes…they ROCK!  His cuisine is unpretentious yet really showcases the seafood with flavors that POP!    more

Pumpkin Pie From a Fresh Pumpkin

November 5, 2010

When I was a child nearly everything we ate came from raw ingredients or home-canned goodies.  I still remember canning with my mom and grinding venison trimmings from a deer my dad hunted.  Pumpkin jack-o-lanterns were always saved for Thanksgiving pumpkin pie so this recipe is reminiscent of my childhood and one I’ve used since my newlywed days.  Back then the water company sent out a little flyer with the monthly bills called Timely Cookery Tips and this recipe came in the October, 1968 flyer.  I was never a huge fan of pumpkin pies made with canned pumpkin and evaporated milk.  They taste like store-bought, a watery and spicy paste, but this pumpkin pie has creaminess, texture, and character your taste buds will savor.   more