Pasta with Eggplant, and Bell Pepper

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1 1/4-pound eggplant, unpeeled, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
2 teaspoons salt
2 cups olive oil
4 large shallots, peeled, quartered
1 large red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped pitted brine-cured black olives (such as Kalamata)
2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
8 ounces rigatoni or other tubular pasta

Preheat oven to 400°F. Toss eggplant with 2 teaspoons salt in large bowl. Turn eggplant out onto paper towels and let drain 30 minutes. Pat eggplant dry.
Heat oil in heavy medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Working in batches, add eggplant to oil; cook until golden, turning occasionally, about 6 minutes per batch. Using slotted spoon, transfer to clean paper towels. Reserve 5 tablespoons eggplant frying oil. Toss shallots and whole bell pepper with 3 tablespoons reserved oil on large baking sheet. Roast until shallots are tender, turning occasionally, about 25 minutes. Place shallots and eggplant in large bowl. Continue roasting bell pepper until skin blackens, about 10 minutes. Wrap in plastic bag; let stand 10 minutes. Peel, core and seed pepper. Cut into thin strips lengthwise, then cut strips crosswise in half. Add bell pepper strips, olives and garlic to eggplant and shallots.
Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain. Return pasta to pot. Add all vegetables and remaining 2 tablespoons reserved eggplant frying oil and toss over medium heat until heated through. Season with salt and pepper. Divide pasta among plates and serve.

Pecan Coated Fish with Tartar Sauce

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Tartar Sauce:
1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
1/3 cup chopped green onions, white and green parts
1/4 cup capers, with juice1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
4 snapper fillets, cut about 1-inch thick, 4 to 6 ounces each
1 stick butter, melted, plus 1 tablespoon whole butter
1 cup pecans, ground into crumbs in a food processor
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Salt and pepper
4 lemon wedges, for garnish
Directions
To prepare sauce, place the parsley, green onions, capers, and garlic in a blender or food processor and combine. Add the mayonnaise, olive oil, lemon juice and mustard. Blend well. Chill until ready to serve with fish. This keeps in a covered container in the refrigerator for several weeks. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Rinse the fish, pat dry and season. Dredge the fish in the melted butter. Spread the ground pecans on a plate and press the fish into the crumbs to coat. Turn the fillets and coat the other side. In a cast iron or other heavy, ovenproof skillet, heat the 1 tablespoon of whole butter with the oil. When it begins to sizzle, sear the fish about 3 minutes per side. Place the skillet in the oven for 6 to 10 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fillets and your preference for degree of doneness. Serve immediately with Tartar Sauce on the side and a lemon wedge.

Tequila Grilled Salmon

tequilla-salmon
Ingredients
1 pound salmon fillet, cut into 6 pieces
1/4 cup each silver or white tequila
Fresh lime juice from about three limes
Fresh orange juice from one orange
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 jalapeño, seeded and minced

Baking Directions
In a medium nonreactive bowl, stir together the salmon, tequila, lime juice, orange juice and season with salt and ground pepper. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 20 minutes.
Heat a grill or grill pan to medium-high. Lightly oil the hot grill.
Grill salmon until opaque throughout, which takes about 8 – 12 minutes, flipping once.
Transfer to a platter and top with minced jalapeño or chives. Serve salmon with lime wedges.

Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Adapted from original recipe by Ina Garten

1/2 pound fusilli (spirals) pasta
Kosher salt
Olive oil
1 pound ripe tomatoes, medium-diced
3/4 cup good black olives, such as kalamata, pitted and diced
1 pound fresh mozzarella, medium-diced (I like to use the Cappelli or other mozzarella that is sold in a fresh ball)
6 sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained and chopped

For the dressing:
5 sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
6 tablespoons good olive oil
2 garlic clove, diced
1 teaspoon capers, drained
2 teaspoons kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1 cup packed basil leaves, julienned

Directions
Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water with a splash of oil to keep it from sticking together. Boil for 12 minutes, or according to the directions on the package. Drain well and allow to cool. Place the pasta in a bowl and add the tomatoes, olives, mozzarella, and chopped sun-dried tomatoes.
For the dressing, combine the sun-dried tomatoes, vinegar, olive oil, garlic, capers, salt, and pepper in a food processor until almost smooth.
Pour the dressing over the pasta, sprinkle with the Parmesan and basil, and toss well.

Cream of Spinach Soup

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3 tablespoons margarine
1 onion, chopped
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon salt
4 cups nondairy creamer
1 (32 ounce) bag frozen chopped spinach
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon pepper

In a medium-sized stockpot, sauté onion in margarine over low heat. Add flour and salt and whisk together. Slowly add non dairy creamer, continually whisking until it begins to thicken. Add spinach, nutmeg and pepper and simmer for about 10 minutes.

Southwestern Rib Roast

Rib_Roasts
This is for a very special weeknight occasion.

1 (8 to 10 pound) rib roast
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon cayenne
2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, drained
2 tomatoes, chopped
½ red onion, chopped
1/3 cup chopped cilantro

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine chili powder, cumin and cayenne. Set aside 2 teaspoons and rub the rest over the roast. Cook, uncovered for ½ hour. Cover with heavy duty foil and cook for an additional 2-1/2 hours. Let stand for at least 10 minutes before carving.
Combine remaining 2 teaspoons of spices with the beans, tomatoes, red onion and cilantro. Serve alongside the roast.

Hermit Bars

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These are very filling – and very good.

¾ cup margarine, softened
1 cup brown sugar
½ cup molasses
3 eggs
2 cups flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon cloves
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ cup strong coffee
½ cup chopped pecans
½ cup chopped walnuts
½ cup chopped almonds
1 cup raisins

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together margarine, sugar and molasses until fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Combine flours, spices and baking soda. Add to batter alternately with coffee. Stir in nuts and raisins. Pour into greased 9 x 13-inch pan. Bake for 20 minutes. Cool

Teriyaki Chicken or Marinade

teriyaki-chicken-marinade
Another good one from Stacy Moses and so easy too!

1 pound chicken breasts, bone in or boneless
1 cup Kikkoman’s teriyaki baste and glaze
½ cup barbeque sauce of choice
1 tablespoon soy sauce
½ teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon garlic

Mix all ingredients. Add chicken to marinade (if grilling, reserve about ½ cup marinade) and work the sauce all over the chicken breasts, coating all pieces and sides.
Allow to marinade for at least an hour and up to 6 hours.
Grill chicken or bake at 375 for 45 minutes. For grilling, drain off most of the marinade before putting chicken on the grill (just drip it off by shaking the chicken). This prevents burning. During the last few minutes of cooking, using a poultry brush and or spoon and brush the chicken on each side with reserved marinade. Continue grilling and serve warm.

Summer Berry Muffins

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1 cup strawberries, chopped
1 cup sugar, plus 2 tablespoons
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
Pinch ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
1 ripe banana, mashed
2 large eggs
¼ cup canola oil
1 lemon, zested
½ pint blueberries
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a small bowl, mix together strawberries and 2 tablespoons sugar. Let sit 15 minutes until strawberries give off juices.
In a small bowl, mix together flour, cinnamon, baking soda, nutmeg and salt.
In a large bowl, whisk together the mashed banana, eggs, oil, 1 cup sugar, strawberries, and lemon zest.
Mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until combined. Do not over mix. Fold in blueberries and walnuts.
Scoop batter evenly into muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of muffin comes out with a few crumbs but not wet, about 30 minutes. Cool on a rack to room temperature.

Asian Burgers with Cabbage Relish and Chili Mayonnaise

asian-burger
3 cups finely shredded Napa cabbage
½ cup thinly sliced green onions, divided
3 tablespoons seasoned rice vinegar
4 teaspoons minced garlic
4 teaspoons fresh ginger, divided
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil, divided
1½ teaspoons Asian chili garlic sauce, divided
¼ cup mayonnaise
1½ pounds ground beef
2 tablespoons soy sauce
4 hamburger buns, split

Heat grill to high – 450 to 550 degrees.

Mix cabbage, ¼ cup green onions, the vinegar, 1 teaspoon each garlic and ginger, 2 teaspoons sesame oil, and ½ teaspoon chili sauce in a large bowl. Set relish aside, stirring occasionally. In another bowl, mix mayonnaise with remaining 1 teaspoon chili sauce.

Combine beef, soy sauce, and remaining ¼ cup green onions, 1 tablespoon each garlic and ginger, and 1 teaspoon sesame oil. Shape into 4 patties, each about ½-inch thick.

Oil cooking grate. Grill burgers, covered, turning once – 7 to 8 minutes total for medium. In the final minutes, toast buns.

Spread bun bottoms with chili mayonnaise. Set burgers on buns. With a slotted spoon, put some cabbage relish on each. Serve with remaining relish.

Grilled Salmon with Cucumber Salad

grilled-salmon-cucumber-salad
Sauce
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
1 tablespoon each chopped fresh dill
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons lemon juice
About ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
⅛ teaspoon pepper

Cucumber Salad
½ pound Persian or English cucumbers
2 teaspoons chives, chopped
2 teaspoons flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1½ teaspoon minced shallot
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
¾ teaspoon lemon juice
⅛ teaspoon each kosher salt and pepper

Salmon and Serving
4 salmon fillets (each 5 to 6 oz., ½ to 1 inch thick) with skin
1 tablespoon olive oil
¼ teaspoon each kosher salt and pepper
Fresh sill sprigs

Make sauce: combine yogurt, dill, oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Cover and chill until used.

Heat grill to medium-high (about 450°).

Make salad: cut cucumbers lengthwise into paper-thin strips, preferably with a mandoline. Put in a bowl with herbs and shallot; chill until used. In another bowl, mix oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper; set dressing aside.

Prepare salmon: Rub all over with oil and sprinkle all over with salt and pepper. Fold a 12 by 20 inch sheet of heavy-duty foil in half crosswise. With a knife tip, poke dime size holes through foil about 2 inches apart. Oil one side of foil.

Set foil with oiled side up on cooking grate. Set fillets slightly separated, skin side down, on foil. Grill, covered, until fish is barely cooked through, 7 to 12 minutes. With a wide spatula, slide fish from skin to a platter and tent with foil.

Discard any liquid from cucumber mixture in bowl, then quickly toss mixture with dressing and mound on fish. Garnish with fresh dill sprigs. Serve immediately with yogurt sauce.

Baked Beef and Beans

Easy
This is an easy mid-week dinner

1 pound ground beef
1 onion, chopped
½ green pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon oil
1 (15 ounce) can baked beans, undrained
1 (15 ounce) can red kidney beans, drained
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
⅓ cup barbecue sauce

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large skillet, over medium-high heat, sauté meat, onion and pepper in the oil until beef is no longer pink. Drain off fat. Combine with remaining ingredients and pour into 3-quart baking dish. Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 20 minutes.

Tuna and White Bean Salad

tuna-whitebean-salad
This is the perfect summer lunch.

1 (15 ounce) can Northern or White Cannellini beans, drained
6-½ ounces solid white tuna in water, drained and broken into small flakes
1 teaspoon basil
½ cup minced scallions
1-½ tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
½ cup oil
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper

Place beans in a bowl and add tuna, basil and scallions. Mix well. Combine lemon juice, red wine vinegar, oil, salt and pepper. Shake well. Pour over salad (You will not need all of the dressing – save for tomorrow’s lunch!) and toss gently.

Baked Spaghetti Pie

baked-spaghetti-pie
8 ounces angel hair pasta, cooked and drained
2 eggs
2 tablespoons butter, melted
4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained well
1 (12 ounce) container cottage cheese
1 cup marinara sauce
1 cup grated mozzarella or pizza cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix pasta with eggs, butter and 2 tablespoons of the Parmesan. Pat down into greased 10-inch round pizza pan (or other baking pan). Spread sauce over pasta almost to edge of pan. Mix together spinach, cottage cheese and remaining Parmesan and spoon atop sauce. Sprinkle mozzarella over all. Bake for about 15 minutes – until cheese is melted and, if your family is like mine, browned. Let stand briefly before cutting into wedges.

Creamy Lime Dessert

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Crust:
1 cup flour
½ cup chopped pecans
½ cup butter

Filling:
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
½ cup lime juice (Key or regular)
2 cups whipping cream (pareve whip if dairy is too hard to find)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine flour and nuts and cut in butter until small crumbs are form. Pat into bottom of ungreased 9-inch square pan. Bake for about 15 minutes. Cool completely. In a medium bowl, mix together condensed milk and lime juice. Beat whipping cream or pareve whip until stiff. Fold lime mixture into whip and mix gently. Pour over crust and refrigerate, covered – at least 2 hours and no longer than 2 days.

Penne Alla Puttanesca

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Don’t be afraid of the anchovy fillets in this dish; they add depth of flavor without any fishy taste. You may omit but try it and let us know what you think.

8 to 10 salt-packed anchovy fillets
Kosher Salt
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
½ medium red onion, cut into ¼-inch dice
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 ½ cups Pomi strained tomatoes, or other pureed tomatoes, simmered until reduced by half
1 ½ to 2 teaspoons hot red pepper flakes
1 pound penne
1 tablespoons salt-packed capers, rinsed and soaked overnight in cold water (change the water frequently)
1/3 cup pitted olives, coarsely chopped
1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh Italian parsley
Freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano, for serving

Put the anchovies in a small bowl and set in the sink under a stream of cold running water for 20 minutes. Drain the anchovies, pat dry and coarsely chop them.

Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil in a large pot and add 3 tablespoons of kosher salt.

Meanwhile, combine the oil, onion, garlic, and anchovies in another large pot and cook over medium heat, stirring, until the onion is lightly browned and the anchovies have broken down, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat.

Drop the pasta into the boiling water and cook until just al dente. Drain, reserving ¾ cup of the pasta water.

Add the pasta and the reserved pasta water to the tomato mixture and stir and toss over medium heat until the pasta is well coated. Stir in the capers, olives, and parsley and serve immediately, with grated parmigiano on the side.

Blueberry Lemon Bread Recipe

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Submitted by my Aunt Carol and made by Laurie Levin

6 tablespoons butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
dash salt
1/2 cup milk
rind of 1 lemon
1 cup blueberries
1/4 cup (approximately) sugar
Juice of lemon

Cream sugar and butter. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well. Mix flour, baking powder, and salt. Add flour mixture alternately with milk to egg, sugar, and butter mixture. Add grated rind of lemon. Carefully fold in blueberries. Bake in a loaf pan (sprayed with non-stick cooking spray) for 1 hour at 350 Degrees. Let cool for 5-10 minutes. Mix 1/4 cup sugar with juice of lemon. Pour over bread in pan. Let stand for 1/2 hour or so. Remove from pan.

Grilled Vegetable Panini

Roasted+Vegetable+Panini+500
Ingredients
1/4 cup olive oil
2 small Japanese eggplants or 1 medium to large regular eggplant, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices
2 zucchini, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices
1 small red onion, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 baguettes (each about 2 feet long)
1/2 cup Basil Pesto, recipe follows
8 ounces mozzarella cheese, sliced
2 tomatoes, sliced
1/2 cup roasted red peppers
8 large basil leaves, optional

Directions
Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Drizzle the oil over the eggplant, zucchini, and onion slices, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Working in batches, grill the eggplant, zucchini, and onions until they are tender and grill marks appear, about 4 minutes per side. Cool completely.
Cut each baguette into 6 pieces. Working with one baguette piece at a time, slice in half and spread both sides with the pesto. Working with the bottom slice of the baguette, stack 2 slices of eggplant, 2 slices zucchini, 1 slice onion, 1 slice tomato, 1 slice mozzarella, and 1 slice of roasted pepper. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place top half of baguette on top and continue with remaining baguette. (The sandwiches can be made 4 hours ahead. Wrap well with plastic wrap and refrigerate.)

Heat Panini machine. Place sandwich on grates. Press top down and cook for approximately 3 – 5 minutes or until the sandwich is warmed throughout.

Basil Pesto:
2 cups fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup (about) extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
In a blender, pulse the basil, pine nuts, garlic, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper until finely chopped. With the blender still running, gradually add enough oil to form a smooth and thick consistency. Transfer the pesto to a medium bowl and stir in 1/2 cup of cheese. Season the pesto with more salt and pepper, to taste. (The pesto can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

Slow Cooker Spiced Shredded Beef Brisket Sandwiches

1 cup beef broth
1 jar (8 ounces) hoisin sauce
¼ cup white vinegar
2 teaspoons Chinese five-spice powder
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 ribs celery, cut into 2-inch long matchsticks
1 thin-cut beef brisket (2 pounds) well trimmed of excess fat
½ teaspoon black pepper
1 head bok choy, trimmed and thinly sliced
8 soft sandwich buns

Whisk beef broth, hoisin sauce, ½ cup water, vinegar, five-spice powder and garlic powder in a small bowl. Place celery and carrot strips in slow cooker bowl. Add the brisket (slicing in half to fit, if necessary); season on all sides with salt and pepper. Pour in beef broth mixture. Cover; cook for 5 hours on HIGH or 10 hours on LOW.

Remove meat to a cutting board. Cool slightly. Skim any fat off top of sauce in cooker and discard. Add bok choy to slow cooker and cook for 15 minutes on high.

Meanwhile, shred beef with two forks, cutting long pieces in half, if desired. Add back to slow cooker and stir to coat with sauce. Serve immediately with soft sandwich buns.

Italian Meat Loaf Patties

2 (12 ounce) packages broad or extra wide egg noodles, cooked, drained and mixed with 2 tablespoons margarine
2 (15 ounce) cans Hunt’s Sloppy Joe sauce
2 pounds lean ground beef
1 cup seasoned bread crumbs
2 eggs
½ onion, finely diced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Set aside half of sauce to brush on patties. Mix remaining sauce with ground beef, bread crumbs, eggs and onion. Form into patties and flatten. Place on a greased baking sheet and brush with reserved sauce. Bake for 30 minutes. Serve over noodles.