Update from Diane …

Hi Everyone,

I just wanted to take the time to explain my absence.

A lot has happened this past week. First of all, I had an eye infection that caused an emergency visit to the eye doctor for medication and then followed by a PCP visit……After that, my husband was rushed to the hospital with chest pains after his nightly exercise routine and it turned out that he had a small blockage that was repaired with the addition of an implanted stent and he is home now and feels good as new.

Just when you thought life was back to normal and I could start my Thanksgiving prep, I had my routine quarterly post transplant check-up and told the doctor about my ordeal with the eye doctor waiting in the public waiting room for over two hours to see a doctor, my husband’s medical scare and the twenty paramedics that were in my house (and I couldn’t remember if they all had gloves and a mask on) and she wanted to give me a Covid 19 test to be on the safe side….

Well, in true 2020 fashion I tested POSITIVE for Covid. I was very upset and shocked being an organ transplant patient that always follows all the rules about masks and social distancing. I had no symptoms except a headache that I thought was just stress from my husband’s medical situation. It seems that someone that I encountered did not take proper precautions toward the safety of others.

So now I am in isolation at home with mild symptoms and hoping it doesn’t get worse. I have lost my sense of taste and smell and I do not have a fever or a cough. I ask for a small prayer and I will be back stronger than ever with more tablescapes and recipes.

Wishing you and your family, many blessings, and good health this Thanksgiving. Stay well and stay safe,

Diane

Pumpkin Fettucine Alfredo

Hi Everyone,

Hope you are all fine, turned your clocks back for that extra hour of sleep on this lazy Sunday and had a wonderful Halloween yesterday!

We had a total of 75 trick or treaters (much lower than years before). I just love to see the toddlers in their costumes. This year for the first time as per doctors orders I wasn’t allowed to open the door to greet the children so I had to leave a bowl of candy outside on the steps, but watched them through the window. So cute. Some costumes are so clever and this year we saw a lot more parents and guardians in costume.

Bob and I made the traditional Turkey and 3-bean chili to keep our Halloween tradition alive and served it with whole grain cornbread …. (recipe on blog)

I am still cooking today, which brings me to todays post…….

Today I made a pumpkin alfredo pasta dish and posted it on my personal timeline. I thought I had included it on the blog once before and today I received so many requests for the recipe from friends that couldn’t find it via the blog index so I decided to post it again.

The original recipe calls for fettuccine but you can use any pasta of your liking. Today I used pappardelle, a large, flat & broad pasta noodle.

The secret ingredient for me is sprinkling the pasta with amaretti cookies before serving. The flavor between the amaretti, pumpkin and sage are fabulous.

These are my favorite amaretti cookies but there are many brands on the market … These can be ordered on Amazon or found in Italian delis.

They are wrapped 2 mini cookies to a package.

Lazzaroni Amaretti, 16-Ounce Tin

I hope you try this recipe and enjoy it as much as we do.

Ingredients:

12 ounces fettuccine (or pasta of your choice)

2 tablespoons butter

1 small onion, finely chopped

1 cup canned solid-pack pumpkin pureeNOT PURE PUMPKIN

2 cups heavy cream

Freshly ground nutmeg

Salt and pepper

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

4-5 fresh sage leaves, chopped

Additional Parmesan cheese for serving

Directions:

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat.

Cook the pasta according to package directions.

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the onion; sauté for 2-3 minutes, stirring, until softened.  Stir in the pumpkin puree and a few leaves of sage.  Add the heavy cream, nutmeg, salt and pepper.  Reduce the heat to medium-low.  Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until the sauce is slightly thickened.  Stir in the Parmesan cheese.

Drain the pasta and add to the sauce.  Transfer the pasta to a serving bowl.

Sprinkle the chopped sage over the top.  Serve with additional grated

Cooks Note: Feel free to toss some toasted, chopped walnuts or crushed amaretti cookies on top. 

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Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well,

Diane

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Ask your family and friends to share, like, comment, and join DishingwithDiane.com and become part of the family!

Once you become a member, you’ll never miss a post.

Also, continue to send me your comments and emails, 

I Love hearing from you.

See you soon with the gumbo recipe…..

Halloween Recap over the Years ….

Hi Everyone,

I hope you have a Happy and Safe Halloween!

This year I am a little bit under the weather so I am posting a recap of my Halloween Posts over the years. I hope the post give you some ideas to use for your gatherings.

I’ll be back posting shortly with the gumbo recipe I promised.

Click link to open….

https://dishingwithdiane.com/2019/10/31/happy-halloween-3/

Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well,

Diane

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Ask your family and friends to share, like, comment, and join DishingwithDiane.com and become part of the family!

Once you become a member, you’ll never miss a post.

Also, continue to send me your comments and emails, 

I Love hearing from you.

Cheesy Shrimp Ciabatta

Click on photos to enlarge and back arrow to return to normal size.

Hi Everyone,

This past week my house was all about shrimp recipes. Bob picked up 2 lbs. of shrimp and I was planning on making a big pot of gumbo; some for now and some to freeze and then I stumbled upon this recipe for a shrimp appetizer on Pinterest that looked interesting.

I discovered this recipe during one of my late night recipe searches. It called for very few ingredients which is one criteria I need when making any appetizer so I thought that I would give it a try for a quick lunch for Bob and I.

I have to be completely honest with all of my members regarding this recipe…

The taste of this appetizer was great but for my personal tastes it was a little too salty because of the cheese I chose to use. I used a regular white cheddar and I think that next time I would definitely buy the lower sodium variety.

In addition, I would ease up a little on the mayonnaise and make more of the shrimp taste shine through. It was still enjoyable but I have to tweak most of my recipes and I wanted to share my thoughts with you.

We made it for a quick “taste test” lunch but if you were to serve it for guests I would cut the bread more evenly into perfect squares.

Here is the recipe from Pinterest

courtesy of Jamhands.net

Cheesy Shrimp Ciabatta
Makes about 16 slices when cut

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 pound cooked shrimp, tails on is fine
  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 tsp. Old Bay seasoning
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 large loaf ciabatta bread, sliced in half like a large sandwich
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup fresh dill, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh chives, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup of cheddar jack cheese

Oops, I almost forgot the dill …

Directions:

  1. Remove the tails from the shrimp and set aside. In a large saute pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the shrimp and old bay seasoning. Cook just for a minute or two until coated well with the seasoning. Remove from heat and let cool. When cooled, chop into small pieces.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Place the shrimp in a medium bowl with the mayo, garlic, chives, dill, and cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Spread onto the cut ciabatta bread. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and bake for 10-13 minutes. Ovens vary so check it at 10 minutes to see if it looks completely warmed through and that the cheese is melted. Slice into sticks. Serve warm.

Adapted from Bobbi’s Kozy Kitchen.

Ready for the oven …

Final product ……

The post and recipe for the most delicious gumbo will be coming soon… watch for it.

Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well,

Diane

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Ask your family and friends to share, like, comment, and join DishingwithDiane.com and become part of the family!

Once you become a member, you’ll never miss a post.

Also, continue to send me your comments and emails, 

I Love hearing from you.

Sandwiches, Snacks and Dessert …

Hi Everyone!

Click on photo to enlarge and back arrow to return to original size.

Hope you are all well.

Please be careful, Covid-19 cases are on the rise all over the world and I pray that you and your families stay safe.

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In the middle of the pandemic, many ordinary things have changed for all of us, especially grocery shopping. Now we use instacart and have everything delivered. But we have to follow guidelines and hopefully make it safer for all.

Bob and I ordered groceries from Trader Joe’s this past week and I wanted to share a quick recap of some of my lunches and desserts that I made with the new items. I wish I could have gone to the store. I miss browsing the aisles for new items, but for now online shopping is the only way for me.

These lunches and snacks are all quick and I thought it could possibly save you time in the kitchen since school is back in session.

Of course everything is pumpkin online but I controlled myself.

All the sandwich ingredients can be substituted with items that you prefer in each category and just consider this a general guideline.

I know there are many days I stand in the kitchen trying to think of something new to have for lunch that isn’t time consuming to make or isn’t old reliable soup; so I hope these photos and brief descriptions give you some new ideas.

First sandwich is melted white cheddar cheese with fresh gala apples and 1 slice of no nitrite/no nitrate & no sugar added bacon (bacon is a treat for me, so that is why I only used 1 slice) on an everything ciabatta roll served with a side salad of organic romaine lettuce with cucumbers and radishes and fresh blueberries (a small side of cheddar wisps crackers for Bob).

*Cooks Note– eliminating the sugar from the bacon gives us a little wiggle room to have a dessert with sugar. For me to stay within my food restrictions and post transplant guidelines I have to give and take here and there.

Shopping List:

Trader Joe’s No Sugar Dry Rubbed Uncured Bacon for $4.49

Trader Joe’s Everything Ciabatta Rolls for $2.49 (qty. 4)

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First dessert– is chocolate hummus with fresh apples and pumpkin cranberry crackers with spiced pumpkin seeds for a fall touch.

Other items to eat with the chocolate hummus are bananas, strawberries, & no salt pretzels.

The hummus is made with cooked chickpeas, tahini, sea salt, cocoa and cane sugar. Absolutely delicious and I am becoming quite obsessed.

Shopping List:

 Trader Joe’s Chocolate Hummus (8 oz) for $1.99

Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Cranberry Crisps for 3.99

Trader Joe’s  Pumpkin Spiced Pumpkin Seeds for $2.99

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The next sandwich is spicy avocado hummus with a hard-boiled egg and fresh tomatoes and chives on a bakery roll, served with an organic romaine lettuce side salad with pecans and some of the leftover hard-boiled egg that didn’t fit on the roll and organic blue corn chips.

There is a quick story with the hummus… I am no fan of avocado at all. I have never had the desire to have avocado toast or guacamole etc. and then this product came on the market and I tasted it and it wasn’t so bad and I decided to buy it. All who know me were shocked that I ingested anything that had avocado in it. It is very spicy and not a strong avocado flavor and I think that is why I liked it. So, I can now say that I have tried it but I am still not ready for anything else avocado.

Shopping List:

Trader Joe’s Organic Spicy Avocado Hummus in an eight-ounce tub for $2.99

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The next dessert is the ultimate fall comfort dessert and it is southern fried apples. Reminds me of eating the inside of an apple pie without the crust (think Cracker Barrel if you have ever been there) with snickerdoodle ice cream- ahh!

Apple pie or pumpkin ice cream would taste great too.

This needs a recipe and was not store bought but very easy to prepare…… I have been using this recipe for years and I think I printed it from All Recipes back in the day….

Fried Apples

Ingredients:

½ cup butter

2 tbsp. ground cinnamon

½ cup white sugar

4 granny smith apples- peeled cored and sliced

Directions:

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir sugar and cinnamon into the hot butter.

Add apples and cook until the apples begin to break down, 5-8 minutes

Serve over pancakes or waffles or ice cream.

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I hope these images gave you some inspiration for lunch.

Enjoy and stay well and make a plan to VOTE!

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Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well,

Diane

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Ask your family and friends to share, like, comment, and join DishingwithDiane.com and become part of the family!

Once you become a member, you’ll never miss a post.

Also, continue to send me your comments and emails, 

I Love hearing from you.

Sausage & Peppers- the quick version

Hi Everyone,

Hope all is well.

This dish is a traditional staple of all Italian households and especially at summer barbecues and Italian street festivals, but I love it all year.

I usually prepare this dish the old fashioned way and I will include my original recipe at the end of this post but I have to tell you how this quick version happened…..

A few nights ago, I made turkey chili for dinner and I made it a little too spicy for Bob (I love spicy). I didn’t want him to eat leftovers for dinner so I decided to make a separate meal for him (quickly) so we could still eat together.

I had all the ingredients in the house for sausage and peppers except my sausage was frozen so I went to plan B.

With plan B, I used “store bought pre-cooked sausage” that I had in the refrigerator. I originally bought this sausage because I was going to make a sausage, kale and zucchini frittata but instead, I used the pre-cooked sausage for Bob’s sausage & peppers dinner.

The meal turned out well and I thought that this could be another quick meal for a school night so I want to share what I did ….

Ingredients:

  • 4 bell peppers – washed and sliced (a mix of colors is nice for this dish)
  • 2 yellow onions- sliced
  • 4 cloves of garlic – diced
  • 4 links of pre-cooked sausages (so many brands on the market- your choice).
  • Cooks Note: I used Teton brand sausage but found them to be salty so I am looking further for another brand). At this point I don’t have a brand to recommend- sorry…
  • Olive oil
  • Salt & pepper
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried oregano flakes (I use Italian imported)
  • 1- 3 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 4 “hero” rolls (in the northeast) or hoagies, clubs, etc.

Directions:

  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the sliced onion and sliced peppers and sauté for 5 minutes and then add garlic, sauté a few minutes longer until veggies are soft.
  3. Make room in the center of the pan and add the tomato paste and stir for a few minutes to toast the tomato paste; then mix it well with the peppers and onions.
  4. Add the salt, pepper, garlic powder, & oregano and mix well
  5. Add the precooked sausage just to heat through. (I cut them in half and heated face down in the skillet until the sausage was golden).
  6. Serve on toasted rolls

Here is my Sausage and Peppers Traditional recipe for when you have more time to spend on dinner.

Sausage and Peppers

Just open the link and click

OR

search the search box on the right for sausage & peppers.

https://dishingwithdiane.com/2015/06/25/recipe-sausage-and-peppers/

Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well,

Diane

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Ask your family and friends to share, like, comment, and join DishingwithDiane.com and become part of the family!

Once you become a member, you’ll never miss a post.

Also, continue to send me your comments and emails, 

I Love hearing from you.

Pasta with Peas

Hi Everyone,

I hope that you are all doing well and staying safe.

I can’t believe that it is October already. Wow, time is sure flying by. I haven’t been on the blog for a few weeks because it seems that all of my post-transplant doctor appointments have been scheduled around the same time; but I have been thinking of all of you constantly.

Yesterday morning, driving to one of my appointments the roads were crowded with school buses and I thought of all the moms and dads that are faced with the beginning of the school year and homework, school projects, new schedules and still having to get dinner on the table.

And then I thought…… What could be a really easy meal to feed a family that could be prepared under 30 minutes and less than 8 ingredients & one of my favorite meals popped into my head and I wanted to share it with my members.

The dish is “pasta piselli” or pasta and peas. I might have posted this before but as the years go by I tweak all my recipes, especially since the heart transplant, searching for better choice ingredients.

When I first got married, my mother told me to always keep canned and frozen peas, a container of mascarpone cheese and 1 box of medium shell pasta in the house and you will always be prepared for a quick easy meal and Mom was always right.

I cannot tell you how many nights this meal came in handy- after a day in the city for doctor appointments or when my son was younger, a late night dinner after sports practice.

But before I type the recipe, I want to wish “Good Luck” to all the students starting school and to the administrators and teachers that have to keep themselves and our children safe while working with Covid19 restrictions.

God Bless them all.

Now, let’s eat some Pasta with Peas ….

Ingredients:

1 lb. box of medium shells pasta

 6-8 TBSP mascarpone cheese *

1-2 cans low sodium sweet peas, rinsed and drained

1 bag frozen peas (10 oz)

2 medium red onion (sliced)

Salt & pepper to taste

1 tsp. dried Italian oregano

Olive oil

2-3 TBSP Pecorino Romano cheese (or more to taste)

Reserve 1- 2 cups of the pasta water

  1. Prepare pasta shells according to box
  2. In the meantime, in a large skillet or saucepan add olive oil to slightly cover the bottom of the pan (approx. 1/3 cup).
  3. Add onion and sauté for approx 2-3 minutes
  4. Lower the heat to low and add the frozen and canned peas, turning slightly and gently not to smash them, only heat them.
  5. Add the mascarpone cheese to make a sauce
  6. When the pasta is ready, Reserve 1- 2 cups of the pasta water and set aside prior to draining the pasta.
  7. Drain the pasta and add to the peas & sauce in the pan and mix gently.
  8. Add the salt, pepper, oregano, and Romano cheeses and 3 TBSP of the pasta water. Mix well
  9. If you feel the pasta is too dry, add a TBSP at a time of the pasta water to the desired texture, otherwise this dish is complete.

Can be served with additional Romano cheese (to taste)

SAVE the pasta water in a jar. You will need it to heat up the pasta piselli leftovers.

I hope you try the recipe and enjoy it.

  • If you cannot find mascarpone cheese, you can substitute heavy cream, low fat Greek yogurt, cream cheese or sour cream.
  • If you do use mascarpone for this recipe and don’t know what to do with the leftover (remember it is an ingredient in tiramisu), it can be used the same as butter on toast with a little cinnamon and added berries as a sweet treat for breakfast.
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Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well,

Diane

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Ask your family and friends to share, like, comment, and join DishingwithDiane.com and become part of the family!

Once you become a member, you’ll never miss a post.

Also, continue to send me your comments and emails

I Love hearing from you.

Grandma’s Fried Zucchini Flowers

Photo Jul 19, 3 00 55 PM (1)

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Hi Everyone, 

Hope all is well and for my members in the northeast, I hope you are handling the heatwave and my thoughts and prayers go out to my members in Texas who are dealing with the hurricane. My prayers for all.

Today’s post is about a traditional Italian summer favorite, Zucchini Flowers. Some of you may remember my first post about zucchini flowers in July 2018 (I will repost the original link at the bottom of the page). 

I have been posting this dish on my personal email quite a bit this summer and I have been asked to reprint the recipe once again.

Many people are unaware of this favorite Italian delicacy and for Italians everywhere, it is the beginning of the summer garden harvest.

When I used to entertain guests and serve this appetizer with a creamy ricotta and lemon/basil dip, people were shocked that the zucchini flowers were edible. They are delicious!

The first time I posted about this delicacy, I included the batter that I had been using for many years which included beer as part of the batter ingredients. Well, a week ago, a very generous neighbor gifted me some zucchini blossoms and I wanted to fry them immediately because they are best on the day they are picked and I didn’t have any beer in the house so I went old school and prepared them grandma’s way. 

Grandma used a simple batter of AP flour, club soda, salt & pepper, and baking powder that I wanted to share with you.

Whisk all the ingredients together very well, and coat the flowers lightly and fry to a golden brown. It’s as simple as that.

This batter brought back memories of grandma running out to the garden in the early morning when the flowers are open (and you can see if there are insects inside) to collect the blossoms to make either plain fried zucchini flowers or she would add them to scrambled eggs for breakfast.

Every bite was a culinary treat.

Absolutely delicious.

Always a summer treat. Grandma picked the male flowers (long skinny stems). The female blossoms have a small zucchini attached and keep those on the vine until fully grown and ripe.

Photo Jul 04, 10 54 26 PM (1)

(The dip is whipped ricotta with a drop of lemon juice, lemon zest, and some chopped fresh basil).

I really hope you try this recipe and enjoy every bite.

So here is the recipe for Grandma’s Zucchini Flowers….very simple and delicious…

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. of flowers ( approx 30 flowers)
  • 2-1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 tsp salt
  • dash of pepper
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 24 oz. club Soda
  • olive oil

Directions:

  • Wash flowers under cold running water, drain and dry the flowers and remove the stamens inside, then remove the sepals on the outer leaves- be careful and watch for insects (mostly bees) inside the petals.
  • Cook’s Note: if the flowers are too wet, they will splatter once they hit the hot oil. Be Careful…
  • Dry the flowers on paper towels or on a tea towel and prepare the batter.
  • Heat 1-1/2 inch of olive oil in a skillet. Dip the flower in the batter and let excess drip off. Fry for 1-2 minutes per side turning once until golden brown. (crispy not soggy).
  • Remove with a slotted spoon & transfer to a paper towel-lined cookie sheet to drain excess oil.
  • You can sprinkle with sea salt or grated cheese and serve with ricotta dip.

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 There are many other recipes with leftover blossoms. 

For example, I add some diced and fried blossoms with some sauteed zucchini, cheese, sauteed onions, and a few eggs to make a wonderful summer quiche or add some fried flowers to a pizza. Both delicious treats.

Photo Jul 12, 8 23 27 PM

Below is my original post from July 18, 2018, with a little more detail and a recipe for stuffed zucchini flowers…..enjoy

Click on the link to open

https://dishingwithdiane.com/2018/07/18/summer-delight-fried-zucchini-flowers/2018 original post

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Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well,

Diane

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Ask your family and friends to share, like, comment, and join DishingwithDiane.com and become part of the family!

Once you become a member, you’ll never miss a post.

Also, continue to send me your comments and emails

I Love hearing from you.

Photo Jul 08, 4 55 59 PM ZUCCHINI FLOWERS

 

Mascarpone Polenta with Mushrooms and Fried Egg

 

My rendition …

Photo Jul 04, 3 43 42 PM (1)

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Hi Everyone,

How many of you are like me and on occasion are stumped as to what to make for a weeknight meal? The days when you just can’t think of something new to make after you have run through your usual “go-to” meals in your head that you know will be a hit, but they just aren’t what you want?

I am fortunate that it’s just Bob and I and he is not a picky eater. If I said, “let’s have ice cream for dinner” he would be okay with that.

I always have frozen meals that I have prepared when I make a larger portion than we can eat in one sitting but nothing I had in the freezer appealed to me.

I still cook as if my son lived home even though he moved out eight years ago (it has to be an Italian mom thing. My mom never cooked for just two people after I got married either). I usually save those frozen meals for days I will be at the hospital all day so we have a hot meal when we come home.

No, I needed something different and then it hit me. A few years back (seems like yesterday but it was 7 years), Bob and I attended the Feast of Saint Anthony in the North End of Boston, and one afternoon we wanted to leave the festivities of the Feast and find a quiet restaurant so I read some reviews online and we booked a reservation at a restaurant called Nebo (stands for North End Boston).

It is a Southern Italian restaurant owned by two sisters (the Pallotta sisters- Carla  & Christine) and they happen to have roots in Bari, Italy like my family. The majority of recipes are family favorites passed down from their mother, so we had to try it.

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 We were fortunate enough that Carla and Christina came to the table to spend a little time with us and we spoke of our heritage and food and traditions. Lovely hosts.

(yes, they tan and I don’t)
2013-08-23 19.23.28

I found a fantastic appetizer on their menu that I thouroughly enjoyed and decided to try and recreate it at home – simple ingredients and it quickly comes together plus it’s delicious.2013-08-23 18.54.42

The appetizer is creamy polenta with mascarpone cheese with a saute of wild mushrooms accented with sage and a fried egg in olive oil to the top of the masterpiece. The restaurant and the hosts are both fabulous and I highly recommend a trip.

(Their appetizer does not have mascarpone cheese) 

So here is my rendition…..

You can even make this a brunch item.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp. of olive oil
  • 1 cloves of garlic – minced
  • 1 1/2 lbs. of mixed mushrooms (cleaned and chopped)
  • 1/2 stick of butter (divided)
  • 1/4 cup of chopped sage 
  • 1 shallot finely chopped
  • sprig of thyme
  • sage leaves for garnish
  • 1 cup mascarpone cheese
  •  1 1/2 cups of your favorite grated cheese (I use Locatelli)
  • polenta
  • water or milk or chicken broth for polenta – your choice
  • 1/4 cup sherry
  • large eggs for frying

Directions:

I now use the 5 minute polenta in a box as opposed to the original slow cooked 45 minutes polenta so this step is very easy.

Prepare the polenta as per package directions which usually includes bringing water (or milk or chicken broth) to a boil with a pinch of salt and the chopped sage. Gradually pour in the polenta, stirring continuously for about 3-5 minutes until the polenta has thickened and pulls away from the pan. Take it off the heat and add the mascarpone cheese and Locatelli cheese.

For the mushrooms, melt 2 tbsp. of butter & 1 finely chopped shallot in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and for the first few minutes do not move them and let them start to carmelize. Then add 1 clove of chopped garlic, salt and pepper and continue to saute until golden brown. If the pan gets too dry add 1 tbsp more of olive oil.

Add 1 sprig of thyme and 1/4 cup sherry and scrape up the brown bits in the pan. Cook for 1 minute more to cook off the alcohol then shut the heat. Check for seasoning.

Last step, in another skillet,  add olive oil and fry a large egg and try not to break the yolk.

Assembly, add 2 tbsp of butter to the polenta and mix well to keep it creamy and place in a dish, add sauteed mushrooms on top of the polenta and top the dish with a fried egg and garnish with sage. 

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We had a wonderful weekend and I even got to meet Maryann Esposito from the “Ciao Italia” TV show and she autographed an Italian apron for me …

2013-08-24 13.55.08- FEAST 2013

Here is a little slideshow of some of the highlights of our trip ….

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I hope you try this dish and enjoy it! If you do, let me know what you think….

Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well,

Diane

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Ask your family and friends to share, like, comment, and join DishingwithDiane.com and become part of the family!

Once you become a member, you’ll never miss a post.

Also, continue to send me your comments and emails

I Love hearing from you.

 

2013-08-28 06.55.31

2013-08-28 06.55.17

Pork Chops with Vinegar Peppers

Photo Jul 09, 8 47 17 PM (1)

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Hi Everyone,

I wanted to share a recipe with you and one I was actually so surprised that it was requested.

Last night I made pork chops with vinegar peppers (a favorite meal of my mother’s) and posted the pic to my personal Facebook page. A lot of people remembered this old Italian favorite from their childhood and asked for the recipe, so I decided to share it with my blog members.

It is usually prepared with all HOT cherry peppers but I am now making it half hot and half sweet peppers because as years go by, Bob’s stomach is liking super hot and spicy less and less.  These are the peppers I use…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are many variations to this dish. I hope you try this variation and enjoy it.

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Pork Chops with Vinegar Peppers

Ingredients: serves 4

  • 4 pork chops (I prefer Berkshire pork)
  • 12 oz jar of sliced hot cherry peppers***
  • 12 oz jar of sweet cherry pepper strips
  •  1 cup of vinegar from the jar ( I use a combination of the hot and sweet vinegar- you can use just one type if you prefer).
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth or white wine
  • 2 yellow onions- sliced
  • 3-4 garlic cloves – diced for the onions
  • 1/2 tsp ground oregano
  • 1 sprig of thyme
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 tbsp. of olive oil (I used a garlic-infused olive oil)***

Garnish with Parsley Flakes

Cooks note***whole hot cherry peppers can be used as well but it is very hot and you would only need between 5-7 depending on how hot you want the dish. Also found in a jar in the Italian food aisle. You will have to slice and de-seed the peppers.

Cooks note*** – if you do not have infused garlic oil, saute halved garlic cloves in olive oil on a low flame until the garlic takes on a deep color and then discard the cloves.

Instructions:

(I marinated the pork chops in a thin layer of olive oil, salt and pepper and a spring of thyme for a few hours in the refrigerator and then took them out of the refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking to get to room temperature).  Pat dry before adding to the pan.

When ready to cook:

Over medium heat add 3 tbsp of infused olive oil to a large fry pan. After a few minutes when the oil is fairly hot, add the pork chop and cook for 4 minutes per side. Remove the pork chops, and set aside. 

Add the peppers to the pan and saute for 2- 3 minutes, next add the sliced onion and saute for 3-4 minutes or until they wilt and start to get color, next add the diced garlic and seasonings and saute for 1 minute.

Saute this mixture for an additional 5 minutes stirring occasionally.

Add the pork chops back and the reserved vinegar from the jars and 1/2 cup chicken broth or white wine. Lower the heat and continue to cook covered for 30 – 40 minutes.

To make a thicker sauce (almost a glaze), remove the cover, and raise the heat so the sauce reduces down to your liking.

*************************************************

I usually serve this dish with sliced roasted potatoes …

Any peppers and onions and potatoes I have leftover I make a frittata with some eggs, herbs, and cheese the next day.

Italians are taught not to waste anything.

Enjoy!

Photo Jul 09, 8 47 17 PM (1)

Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well,

Diane

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