Update on Diane

Hi everyone, this is Diane’s husband Bob.  I wanted to share with you why Diane has not posted in a while.  She had a heart transplant in late January and is now home recovering.  Diane will not be posting any tablescapes soon, but she will be posting recipes (with my help).  She misses all of her members and can’t wait to get back to posting on a regular basis.

Stay well,

Bob & Diane

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Sausage, Bean and Spinach soup…

photo jan 28, 7 18 49 pm sausage bean soup with mini ravioli

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Hi Everyone, 

Since most of the country will be experiencing the polar vortex this weekend, here is a soup to warm you up.

Sausage, Bean and Spinach Soup!

More like a meal in a bowl. I hope you give it a try.

It is filled with sausage, red kidney beans, canellini beans, tomatoes, spinach and an extra touch of mini cheese filled ravioli.

(The ravioli can be found at Trader Joe’s).

photo jan 29, 1 44 43 pm mini ravioli

Ingredients:

  • 2- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 links of sausage (hot or sweet- your choice), casings removed
  • 2 small onions, diced (I used one yellow and one red)
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 quarts low sodium chicken stock
  • two (14.5-ounce) cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed (I removed the beans and some liquid from half a can and mashed them to add some thickness to the soup- totally optional)
  • 1 can (14.5 ounce) dark kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 cups baby spinach, chopped and washed (10 oz frozen thawed and drained spinach can be substituted)
  • 1-pint grape tomatoes cut in half
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 1 Parmesan cheese rind (optional) * I think this makes a big difference
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup grated cheese or more
  • ¼ cup red wine
  • 2 tbsp. tomato paste
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbsp. butter (makes it velvety)
  • mini cheese filled ravioli or any small pasta can be substituted – orzo,  or mini farfalle – any quantity you choose.

Instructions:

  1. In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium; add the sausage and cook until lightly browned and crispy, about 7 to 8 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  2. Add the onions to the hot oil, season with some salt and pepper and cook until they begin to soften, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for 30 seconds more.
  3. Add the red pepper flakes and tomato paste and cook for 1-minute coating the onions with the tomato paste.
  4. Add 1/4 cup of red wine to the pan, scraping up any browned bits from the sausage. Add the remaining stock, beans, spinach, bay leaves, grape tomatoes, rosemary, thyme and Parmesan rind, if using. Bring to a boil, cover, lower the heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
  5. Fish out the bay leaves, herb stems and Parmesan rind; add in the cooked sausage, heavy cream, butter and grated cheese, and cook until soup starts to thicken slightly, about 5 minutes more.
  6. Taste for seasoning.
  7. I separately cook mini pasta and add it to the soup before serving.

I serve this with a slice of crusty bread and a little bit of Dubliner cheese melted on top.

(Dubliner cheese is imported by Kerrygold and tastes like a nutty cheddar cheese).

Stay warm and stay safe.

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.

Happy 4th Blogiversary!

 

photo jan 26, 12 06 13 am congrats extra

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Hi everyone,

Well it’s that time of year again, time to celebrate another anniversary for DishingwithDiane.com

Hard to believe that DishingwithDiane is

Four Years Old !

photo jan 26, 12 03 46 am (1) blogiversary cake

 Four years have flown by so quickly. I absolutely love sharing my recipes, tablescapes, family events and stories.

The more members we have just makes the DishingwithDiane family bigger and better. I deeply appreciate every member.

I wish I could thank each and every one of you in person for signing up to become a member and showing so much love and support for this blog. 

I hope that over the course of four years I have helped you in some way. Perhaps a new recipe that has become a family favorite or new ideas for your tablescapes for parties and holidays. Whatever it is, it has been a labor of love for me.

Please continue to ask your family and friends to like, share, comment and join DishingwithDiane, as we head into year number Five.

******

So let the celebration begin and lets start an anniversary tablescape for our

Fourth Anniversary. 

photo jan 25, 11 58 45 pm (1) 2019 sign

I knew from the day I bought these dishes that I wanted to use them for my 4th anniversary tablescape. They are pretty versatile. They can be used for any winter celebration and even for a Christmas luncheon.

I think what attracted me to these dishes was the black & white harlequin pattern, absolutely one of my favorite patterns. And they are designed by one of my favorite artists, Susan Winget.

I have been obsessed with black and white in fashion and home decor for many years. I think I fell in love with the bold look of black & white once I saw My Fair Lady and they had the Black and White Ball.

Does anyone remember seeing the movie and how stunning Audrey Hepburn looked in this ensemble?

Photo courtesy of Arktimes.com
c1d31abaaadc71a01ab085ef71b781e2 my fair lady black and white

 She has always been a favorite actress of mine.

Back to the dishes…

The dinner plate is very festive and it has the black and white harlequin pattern as the border with an accent of amber and burgundy at the edge of the plate. The center of the dinner plate is white framed in an array of fruits in tones of burgundy, amber and green finished with a red bow. Almost looks like a wreath of fruit.

photo jan 25, 11 48 58 pm dinner plate

The salad plate also has the harlequin border with an amber and burgundy edge and each plate features one of the fruits displayed on the dinner plate in the center.

photo jan 25, 11 47 58 pm salad plate two

photo jan 25, 11 48 29 pm (1) salad plate one

Unfortunately for me this set does not come with soup bowls, only small ice cream bowls which I chose not to buy. I did purchase the mugs along with a small harlequin rectangular tray (12 X 6) with handles and the creamer and sugar bowl

photo jan 25, 11 50 22 pm creamer and mugsphoto jan 25, 5 53 39 pm rectangular tray

I am starting my tablescape with a solid black tablecloth with a woven square pattern. Very basic but I needed the pattern to add something to the table. I think a plain solid tablecloth would be too dull.

photo jan 26, 1 17 57 am tablecloth

Along with the black tablecloth, I had to add my black and white harlequin table runner.  I originally bought this table runner to decorate a table at Halloween for bowls of candy for trick or treaters. 

Photo Jan 25, 5 59 39 PM  RUNNER.jpg

Now for the placemats and chargers. This tablescape needed an accent color from the plates, so I am using a red woven placemat. This will add a pop of color and match the bow on the dinner plate.

photo jan 25, 11 42 49 pm placemat

I didn’t want to add any additional color to the tablescape so I am using clear glass chargers. They dress up the table without taking away from the table linens.

photo jan 25, 5 59 54 pm charger

When I purchased the table runner I also purchased the matching napkins and I am so glad that I did. They work perfectly on the table and I decided to use a pearl napkin ring. I love the combination and I am using pearls in my centerpiece.

photo jan 25, 5 58 46 pm napkin and pearl ring

My flatware is absolutely fantastic! I was gifted this set of black and white harlequin cutlery and I love it. My son’s girlfriend gave me this set because she knows how much I love black and white and the harlequin pattern. There couldn’t be better flatware for this tablescape.

photo jan 25, 5 58 08 pm

Now the glassware. Since there is always a dessert and prosecco celebration for the anniversary, I am using my Waterford crystal flute glasses.

photo jan 25, 5 57 25 pm flute

photo jan 25, 11 51 23 pm prosecco

My centerpiece is the crystal vase that matches the stemware and I filled the vase with black and white silk flowers and a few pearl sprays to accent the flowers and coordinate with the napkin rings.

photo jan 25, 11 40 51 pm centerpiece

For the first time I am using water jewels as a vase filler. These are water absorbing polymer that grows larger the more you hydrate them. When the water evaporates the beads shrink and can be saved in an airtight container for another project.

Normally, I would use these beads for fresh flowers, but I wanted to try them on silk to help the flower stems stay exactly where I wanted them.

Here is the picture of the water jewels I purchased…

(Found at Michael’s Art’s & Crafts).

photo jan 25, 11 33 26 pm (1) water jewels

My table accents are candles of course and I am using mercury glass votive holders to complete the table along with black, gray and white glass gem table scatter.

photo jan 25, 11 44 14 pm candles and scatterq

My cake stand is clear glass at the base with a crackled pattern for the cake stand top. It actually reminded me of the water jewels in the vase.

photo jan 25, 11 42 27 pm cake stand

Now, what is a celebration without a cake? This year I asked for a harlequin print on the cake and I had to go to two bakeries before anyone would accept the challenge. It seems that black frosting is a color that isn’t asked for very much. 

I finally found a bakery willing to try and I think they did a great job. I even kept the filling simple to make it easier for them- just yellow cake and chocolate pudding (can’t go wrong with basic).

And now the finished cake served by candlelight…

photo jan 26, 1 16 16 am table and candlelight

photo jan 26, 12 07 45 am (1) cake with candle

I wanted to add a second accent to the table and decided on some fresh fruit that was featured on the salad plate. I used a white ceramic fruit bowl with pears, apples and grapes. 

(Bob said this looks like a painting).

photo jan 25, 11 40 02 pm fruit bowl

Table Setting

photo jan 25, 6 00 44 pm place setting

And now, Bob and I will have our traditional toast to another great year along with a toast to all the members of DishingwithDiane that make my dream of having this blog come true.

Thank you

photo jan 26, 1 26 24 am cake and toast

Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well,

Diane

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Ask your family and friends to 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.

4th blogiversary - use

Pasta with Peas (Pasta Piselli)

photo jan 08, 6 46 17 pm pasta piselli with cream sauce

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Hi Everyone, 

I hope all your decorations are put away and you have recovered from the holidays and have begun a wonderful, happy, healthy New Year!

A lot of people start diets this month or they just want to start incorporating meatless meals into their diet and I have the perfect recipe.

I posted a picture of this meal on my personal Facebook page and received many requests for the recipe, so I decided to post it for all of my members.

If you want an easy, quick meal, this is for you.

The dish is “Pasta Piselli” or pasta with peas.

I call it comfort food- Italian style.

When I first got married, my mother told me to always have the ingredients to make pasta piselli in the house because it can be whipped up in no time for the nights you are tired, can’t think of what to make for dinner or just need something quick.

I took my mothers advice and it has come in handy on many occasions. 

The original recipe has only six ingredients plus seasonings.

Below is the recipe that my mother taught me.

___________________________________________________________________

Ingredients:

1 lb. ditalini pasta or small shells

Extra virgin olive oil to slightly coat the bottom of a saucepan

Small red onion, finely chopped

3 cloves minced garlic

2 cans sweet peas, with their juice

Salt & pepper to taste

red pepper flakes

Freshly grated cheese – your choice (I use Locatelli)

Instructions:

Cook pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water until al dente- follow package directions.

Drain pasta and reserve one cup of pasta water, set aside.

Heat oil in another large pot. Stir in the diced onion and a pinch of salt.

Sauté for a few minutes and add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook for 1-2  minutes.

When the onion is soft, add 2 cans of peas and their juice.

When peas are heated through, add the drained pasta to the pea mixture and stir to combine. Adjust seasoning of salt and pepper.

Take off the heat and add grated cheese and let it sit for a few minutes before serving.

If the pasta looks to dry for your liking add a little pasta water or chicken broth- 1 tbsp at a time.

Serve with more grated cheese.

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For those of you who know me, you know I have to tweak a recipe and I decided to tweak this recipe and make it

Pasta Piselli with a Cream Sauce. 

So this is my new version of this dish… The photo above is this new version, but the original is fabulous as well.

____________________________________________________________

Ingredients:

1 lb box of medium shell pasta or ditalini pasta or any small pasta (I used penne)

8 TBSP mascarpone cheese * (Mascarpone cheese is Italian cream cheese)

1 can low sodium sweet peas, rinsed and drained

Small bag (10 oz) of frozen peas

1 medium red onion (sliced)

3-4 cloves garlic (minced)

2 Dorot brand cube of crushed garlic (found in Trader Joe’s frozen section- photo below).

½ tsp garlic powder

Salt & pepper to taste

Olive oil

3 TBSP of grated cheese (or more to taste)

Reserve 1- 2 cups of the pasta water

Directions:

Prepare pasta according to package directions.

In the meantime, in a large skillet or saucepan add olive oil to slightly cover the bottom of the pan.

Add the sliced onion and a pinch of salt and saute for a few minutes. Add the garlic, frozen garlic cubes and red pepper flakes and saute for approx. 2-3 minutes.

Reduce the heat to low and add both the drained cans of peas and the frozen peas, turning slightly and gently not to smash them, only heat them.

Add the mascarpone cheese to melt and make a sauce.

When the pasta is cooked, reserve 1- 2 cups of the pasta water and set aside.

Drain the pasta and add to the peas & sauce in the pan and mix gently.

Add your seasonings-  salt, pepper, garlic powder plus grated cheeses and 3 TBSP of the pasta water. Mix well and set aside for 1-2 minutes to blend all the flavors.

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 grated cheese (to taste).

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

_________________________________________________________________________

This is the crushed garlic cube that I use…


photo jan 09, 4 11 48 pm crushed garlic cube__________________________________________________________________

I hope you try this recipe and add it to your meatless meals.

Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well,

Diane

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Ask your family and friends to 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.

 

Seafood Recipes

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

Hi Everyone,

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with your family and friends.

My holiday was wonderful because my son was able to come for the holiday for the first time in four years. (He is usually working).

I followed the Italian Christmas Eve tradition and had the “Feast of the Seven Fishes”. This has to be my favorite meal of the year!

I have been getting a lot of requests for the recipes on my personal Facebook page and decided to post all of the recipes that I use to the blog, so you can all enjoy them.

Some recipes are so old that I don’t remember where I got them from, some are a combination of my recipe tweaks over the years and some are fairly new from various websites that I will give credit to when I know the author. 

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Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

I wish you peace, happiness, love, health and many blessings in 2019!

Stay well, 

Diane

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Thank you for visiting my blog and please ask your family and friends to 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.

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Crab Meat Stuffed Shrimp

(I do not remember where I got this recipe).

Photo Dec 25, 8 16 42 PM STUFFED SHRIMP

2 dozen jumbo shrimp
1 med onion finely chopped
1/2 med green pepper diced fine
1/2 cup of celery finely chopped
1/2 cup of butter melted and divided
1 lb. of lump crab meat *
1 large egg beaten
3/4 cup of cracker crumbs (saltine or Ritz – your choice)
1/2 cup of mayo
1 tbsp. mustard
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/8 tsp ground red pepper

paprika and lemon for garnish

*Cooks Note: I use Phillips lump crab meat in the black can. Sold in Costco.

Peel shrimp leaving tails in tack, cut slit almost through back of shrimp using paring knife. open shrimp to flatten and place in a baking dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray or drizzled with olive oil and set aside.

In a skillet, cook onion, pepper, and celery and 1/4 cup of butter, stir often and cook until soft.

Combine crab meat, egg, cracker crumbs, mayo, mustard, and Worcestershire sauce, and red pepper in a bowl. Stirring gently add in the cooked veggie mixture and mix well.

Top each shrimp with approx. 2 to 3 tbsp. of crab meat filling…and sprinkle with paprika and drizzle remaining 1/4 cup of butter over top of stuffed shrimp.

Bake uncovered at 350 for about 30 minutes and then put under the broiler for about 5 minutes till tops are nice and browned …basting with pan juices while broiling, serve with lemon

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Saffron Fregola with Seafood

(This recipe is courtesy of Williams Sonoma)

Photo Dec 25, 8 24 45 PM FREGOLA

A bit of culinary exotica, fregola is a type of pasta from the Italian island of Sardinia. The more common Israeli couscous may be substituted. Serve this hearty stew with a refreshing butter lettuce and pear salad and plenty of crusty bread for dipping.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp. saffron threads
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1/2 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 lb. medium scallops, tough muscles removed
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup fregola (Sardinian couscous) or Israeli couscous
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 lb. clams, scrubbed
  • 2 Tbs. minced fresh flat-leaf parsley

Cooks Note: I add mussels and cockles

Directions:

Crush the saffron in a small bowl and add the wine. Set aside.

In a large, heavy pot over high heat, warm 1 Tbs. of the olive oil. When the pan is very hot, add the shrimp and sear for 1 minute per side (do not cook all the way through). Transfer to a bowl. Add the scallops to the pot and sear for 1 minute per side, also without cooking all the way through. Transfer to the bowl with the shrimp.

Add the remaining 1 Tbs. olive oil, the onion and garlic to the pot and saute until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the saffron mixture and cook for 2 minutes. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Add the fregola and stir to combine, then reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 12 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Add the clams and mussels if using, discarding any that do not close to the touch. Cover the pot tightly and steam for 3 minutes. Remove the lid and quickly add the shrimp and scallops. Cover the pot tightly again and continue to cook just until the clams open and the shrimp and scallops are cooked through, about 3 minutes. Discard any shellfish that failed to open. Ladle the stew into warmed bowls, sprinkle with the parsley and serve immediately. Serves 4.

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Cod with Tomatoes and Herb Butter

(This recipe is courtesy of –Author: Katya @ https://www.littlebroken.com)

Photo Dec 25, 8 30 18 PM COD WITH TOMATOES

INGREDIENTS

Tomato and Herb butter

  • 1 medium shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 1-pint grape or cherry tomatoes
  • ½ cup chicken stock
  • ½ tsp. sea salt
  • ¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
  • ¼ tsp. granulated sugar
  • 4 Tbsp. unsalted butter, sliced
  • 3 Tbsp. fresh chopped herbs (basil, parsley, chives, cilantro), plus extra for garnish

Cod

  • 2 – 2¼ pounds fresh cod fillets, cut into 6-8 oz. portions*
  • 1 lemon
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

Tomato and Herb Butter

  1. In a small saucepan heat olive oil over medium heat. Sauté shallot and garlic for 4-5 minutes or until soft, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add tomatoes, chicken stock, sea salt, red pepper flakes, and sugar. Simmer, uncovered, for 15-17 minutes or until tomatoes break down and release their juices and liquid has almost evaporated.
  3. Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the butter and fresh herbs. The herb butter should be velvety and thick. Cover and keep warm while the cod is baking.

Cod

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Drizzle the bottom of a casserole dish lightly with olive oil. You want a dish big enough to fit the cod in a single layer with some room around or you will get too much juice during baking.
  3. Pat dry the cod really well and place in a single layer. Season with salt and pepper to taste but be generous. Drizzle the top lightly with olive oil and squeeze of fresh lemon. I used about ½ lemon. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 12-18 minutes or until easily flaked. Baking time will depend on the thickness of the cod.
  4. Remove from the oven and evenly spread the tomato butter over the cod. Cover back with aluminum foil and let stand at room temperature for 1-2 minutes before serving. You just want all the flavors to come together.
  5. Garnish with fresh chopped herbs, if desired, and serve immediately.

NOTES

*I used about 2¼ pounds of cod that I was able to cut into six (6-8 oz.) individual portions
**This cod serves really well with cooked rice, quinoa, or crusty bread to soak in all the juices.

Serving size: 1 (6-8 oz.) cod fillet with butter sauce

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Stuffed Calamari

(This recipe is mine from a combination of different recipes over the years).

Photo Dec 25, 8 44 34 PM (1) STUFFED CALAMARI

  • 1 lb. calamari tubes & tentacles (purchase squid already cleaned)
  • 2 ½ cups Italian style breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup minced garlic
  • ¼ cup fine diced parsley
  • ¾ cup grated Romano cheese
  • 1 cup milk & 1 egg (lightly beaten) OR 2 eggs
  • ½ cup olive oil OR LESS
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp lemon zest
  • 2 oz each: diced shrimp * chopped calamari * crab meat
  • ½ cup chopped onion sautéed in 2 tbsp butter
  • Splash of white wine
  • GenovaTonno tuna in oil (optional- gold can)
  • Pointed toothpicks
  1. Sauté chopped onion in 2 tbsp butter and set aside
  2. In a separate bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, garlic, parsley, cheese, 1 cup milk, 1 egg, lemon zest, diced fish, splash of white wine, salt, pepper, onion and butter mixture and olive oil.
  3. The mixture should me slightly mealy but hold together if you squeeze it in the palm of your hand. (a little loose- needs more breadcrumbs).
  4. Take a small amount of stuffing and fry to test for seasoning before stuffing the tubes.
  5. Stuff each calamari tube halfway full, using your fingers to stuff the mixture well into each calamari tube. (When the calamari cook, they blow up, so you can’t fill them too full of stuffing or they will split open).
  6. Close each calamari tube with a toothpick
  7. Add to the fish sauce in the last ½ hour of cooking

Alternate directions is to bake calamari in tomato sauce in a separate baking pan.

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Seafood Salad

(This recipe is courtesy of Deborah Mele from Italian Food Forever. I have admired all of her recipes for years. She is fabulous.)

Photo Dec 25, 8 44 53 PM (1) SEAFOOD SALAD

Antipasti di Mare ~ This is a wonderful Christmas Eve appetizer but is tasty year round. This seafood salad often contains octopus as well as shrimps, scallops, and calamari, but if you prefer, you can certainly leave the octopus out.  The octopus requires a much longer cooking time, so if you choose to include it, you will need to add an additional hour or so to your preparation time.

Serves 6

3 Cups White Wine

5 Bay Leaves

2 Cloves Garlic, Crushed

2 Lemons

1 Pound Calamari, Cleaned And Cut Into Rings

1 Pound Medium Shrimp, Cleaned And Deveined

1 Pound bay Scallops 

1 Cup Black Olives

Chopped celery

Dressing:

1 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/2 Cup Lemon Juice

3 Large Garlic Cloves, Thinly Sliced Br

1/4 Cup Chopped Parsley

Dash Red Pepper Flakes

Salt & Pepper To Taste

In a stockpot, combine 3 quarts of water, the wine, bay leaves, and crushed garlic. Slice the lemons in half and squeeze the juice into the mixture. Drop the lemons into the pot. Bring the mixture first to a boil, and then reduce the heat to medium low.

First cook the shrimp, cook 2 minutes and remove from the pot. Cook the calamari 1 ½ minutes and remove from the pot as well. If you are cooking scallops, cook in the same manner for 2 minutes. Mix the seafood together and set aside.

Place the seafood in a bowl and add the chopped celery. Add the dressing ingredients and mix well. Cover and let marinade a minimum of 12 hours. Just before serving, adjust the seasonings, and add the black olives if you are using them. Serve
Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele 2002

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Coconut Shrimp and Fried Calamari

Photo Dec 25, 9 27 12 PM CALAMARI AND COCONUT SHRIMP

Fried Calamari

(Recipe courtesy of  theforkbite.com).

Ingredients

Calamari:

  1. 1 lb. calamari, bodies sliced into 1/2-inch rings, tentacles left whole
  2. 1 1/2 cup buttermilk
  3. 1 cup flour
  4. 2 tsp paprika
  5. 2 tsp salt
  6. 1 tsp black pepper
  7. 1 tsp garlic powder
  8. 1 tsp cayenne
  9. 1 tsp red chili flakes
  10. oil for frying
  11. chopped parsley for garnish
  12. lemon wedges to serve

Lemon aioli:

  1. 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  2. zest and juice of 1 lemon
  3. dash of Tabasco
  4. salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

Prep 15 minutes * cook 45 minutes * ready in 1 hour

  1. Prepare lemon aioli – whisk together mayo and tabasco- season with salt and pepper
  1. Soak calamari in buttermilk for 20-30 minutes.
  2. Preheat frying oil to 350 degrees F.
  3. Combine flour with seasonings from paprika – red chili flakes.
  4. Dredge calamari in seasoned flour, tossing evenly to coat.
  5. Carefully drop a handful of the calamari into the hot oil.
  6. Cook until golden brown, about 1-2 minutes.
  7. Remove with slotted spoon and transfer to a paper lined baking sheet.
  8. Repeat with remaining calamari.
  9. Sprinkle parsley on top. Serve with lemon wedges and lemon aioli.

Notes:  Why buttermilk instead of eggs? The acidity in the buttermilk helps keep the calamari tender and helps create a lighter, crispier batter.

So, adding eggs or breadcrumbs is not necessary.

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Coconut Shrimp

(This recipe courtesy of a friend, Marcia Haynes Bohle).

Coconut Shrimp

1/2 tsp salt

 2 ½ C flour divided

1 tsp white pepper

1/2 C cornstarch

1 tsp Old Bay Seasoning

1 tsp baking powder

1 egg

1/2 tsp minced garlic

 1 ½ C sparkling water

1 tsp paprika

 2 C panko bread crumbs

2 ½ C shredded coconut

Vegetable oil for frying

1 lb. Raw Shrimp- peel/de-vein, leave tail on.

Directions:

In a gallon zip lock bag: 1/2 C flour & 1/2 C cornstarch

In a shallow mixing bowl: 1 C flour, 1 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp minced garlic, 1 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 tsp white pepper, 1 tsp Old Bay Seasoning, 1 egg, 1 ½ C S. Pellegrino or other sparkling water.

On a foil lined jelly roll pan: 2 C panko bread crumbs, 2 1/2 C shredded coconut, 1 C flour (toss together).

Peel & de-vein the shrimp. Leave the tail on.

Pat the shrimp dry with paper towels and place in the zip lock bag with flour & cornstarch. Shake to coat.

 In a shallow bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, garlic, spices, egg, sparkling water. This should make a batter, just a little thinner than pancake batter. Holding by the tail, dip each shrimp into the batter an onto the jelly roll pan which has a mixture of bread crumbs, coconut and flour. Coat well with the coconut mixture and chill the breaded shrimp for 30 min.

Deep fry for 2-3 min in vegetable oil. Drain on paper towels. Serve with sweet & sour sauce, sweet Thai chili sauce or whichever sauce you like. I’m guesstimating the measurements so feel free to tweak it any way you like.

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Baked Clams Oreganata

(This recipe courtesy of CookingItalianComfortFood)

Photo Dec 25, 8 36 15 PM BAKED CLAMS

  • 18 little neck clams with reserved clam juice
  • 1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 heaping tablespoons of grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil plus more to drizzle over clams
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

lemon wedges for garnish

Unless you have worked at a clam bar, shucking clams is not an easy task. Here is an easy way to get the clams opened and save your fingers from shucking.

 Pre-heat the oven to 450 degrees. After you washed and scrubbed the clams, place in a single layer on a Focus Foodservice Commercial Bakeware 13 by 18 Inch 18 Gauge Aluminum Half Sheet Pan
Place in the oven for only 2-3 minutes. This will be enough to loosen the clams up so they will be easy to open.

Take the clams out of the oven and with a butter knife or other thin knife without teeth, pry open the clams. I open the clams over a bowl to make sure I catch all the juice that comes out, you will use it in the stuffing. Open up the clam, get rid of the top shell, and loosen the clam in its shell by sliding the knife under the clam.

In a medium bowl mix together the bread crumbs, oregano, parsley, garlic, grated cheese, 2 tablespoons of reserved strained clam juice, olive oil, and black pepper.

Take the clam and hold it over the bowl with the stuffing. Top the clams with this mixture, but don’t pack down the bread crumbs. Drizzle with some olive oil.

Place them under the broiler until the clams are done and the bread crumb is crispy and golden, about 4-5 minutes. Serve with the lemon wedges.

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

Shrimp Cocktail

(This recipe courtesy of Food Network)

Photo Dec 24, 7 12 56 PM SHRIMP COCKTAIL

Court Bouillon:

  • 10 cups cold water
  • 2 medium carrots, quartered
  • 2 stalks celery, quartered
  • 1 large onion, quartered
  • 1 head garlic, halved
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • 1/2 bunch parsley
  • 5 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves

Shrimp:

  • 1 pound medium or large shrimp, in the shell, rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • Cocktail Sauce, recipe follows
  • Lemon wedges

Directions

Put the water, carrot, celery, onion, garlic, lemon, parsley, thyme, and bay leaves in a pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Lower the heat to a simmer, set a cover on top slightly ajar, and cook for 10 to 30 minutes.

Drop the shrimp into the liquid and turn off the heat. Cook the shrimp, stirring occasionally, until they curl and turn pink, about 2 to 2 1/2 minutes for medium shrimp, 3 minutes for large ones. Drain and cool to room temperature. Peel the shrimp and remove the vein along the curve of the shrimp, if desired. Refrigerate if not serving right away. If refrigerated, bring the shrimp to room temperature 20 minutes before serving.

To serve put the cocktail sauce in a medium bowl and surround with the shrimp, or loop the shrimp over the edge of an individual cocktail glass and top with the sauce. Garnish with the lemon and serve.

Optional Tip: To de-vein the shrimp before cooking, hold a shrimp between the thumb and forefinger with the rounded side of the shrimp upward. Place the pointed end of a wooden skewer at the junction of the second and third segments of the shrimp shell, about 1/8-inch down from the top. Gently push the skewer through the shell and then lift up to remove the vein.

Cocktail Sauce:

  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 lemon, zest finely grated and juiced
  • 4 teaspoons prepared horseradish, or to taste, drained
  • 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Hot sauce, to taste

Combine the ketchup, lemon zest and juice, horseradish, and Worcestershire sauce in a small bowl. Add hot sauce, if desired. Mix well, then refrigerate until ready to serve.

Yield: 1 1/2 cups

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

Crab Sauce (usually served with linguine for Christmas Eve)

(This recipe is mine combined from various recipes over the years).

Photo Dec 24, 7 41 49 PM LINGUINE WITH CRAB SAUCE

Ingredients:

2 shallots diced

5-6 cloves of garlic (or more) – diced

Olive oil

Parsley- roughly 3 tbsp- finely chopped

1 small can of anchovies with oil

6 cleaned blue claw crabs (your fish monger will clean them and just rinse them when you get home).

2 cans San Marzano whole peeled tomatoes – blended in the food processor

Red pepper flakes, salt and black pepper – to taste

1 cup clam juice

1 cup white wine

Tomato paste (optional)

Directions:

Coat the bottom of an 8 qt pot with olive oil and heat on medium

Add the shallots and a pinch of salt and sauté for 1-2 minutes until translucent.

Add the garlic and sauté an additional 1-2 minutes until golden brown – be careful not to burn

Add one small can of anchovies with their oil and stir to dissolve –

(this does not make the sauce taste fishy. I add it in my white clam sauce as well).

Once dissolved add the parsley and fresh ground black pepper, salt and some red pepper flakes to taste and sauté

Now add the crabs and sauté for about 5-7 minutes until the claws become red. Mix well with the parsley mixture to get the oil and garlic in the nooks and crannies of the crab.

In the meantime, put two cans of san Marzano whole peeled tomatoes in the food processor and blend.

Add the tomatoes, wine and clam juice to the crabs.

Sauté on medium for approx. 20 minutes with the lid a jar. After 20 minutes if the sauce seems too watery add 1 tbsp of tomato paste and continue to simmer for 5 minutes.

Simmer on low until you prepare your pasta (usually linguine for this dish al dente- 7 minutes.-– (I cook the pasta two minutes shy of being done).

Add your pasta to a large pot or saute pan and add the crab sauce, cook for two minutes so the sauce can be absorbed by the pasta. 

Serve with the crabs, or make the crabs a second course

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And to end the meal, a platter of Christmas Cookies

Photo Dec 26, 10 06 03 AM CHRISTMAS COOKIES 2018

(recipes posted for the cookies in the following link)

https://dishingwithdiane.com/2017/12/22/christmas-cookies-recipes-2017/

 

 

Holiday Cookie Recipe Announcement

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

Hi Everyone, 

I am so thrilled and excited to share this news with you.

Once again, I am happy to say that DishingwithDiane has been featured in a magazine article.

This time, a variety of my Christmas Cookies are featured in the

Holiday issue of The List Magazine LI.  (pages 23 -25).

It is such an honor for me to be included in this issue and part of this great publication.

 I suggest you read this magazine from cover to cover. It is a pleasure to read, especially if you live on Long Island, NY.

Photo Dec 18, 11 13 42 PM COOKIE COVER

Here is the article…

If you have the chance to make only one of the cookies, my suggestion would be to make the Amaretto Raspberry Shortbread Cookies – it happens to be my favorite cookie, and it was a big hit last year in my house.

The best jam to use for this cookie is …

Bonne Maman – Raspberry Preserves (available in many supermarkets).

Photo Dec 18, 10 01 05 PM COOKIE RECIPE PAGE 2

Photo Dec 18, 10 01 29 PM COOKIES PAGE 3

The recipes for the cookies featured in the article, and more are in the link below.

This is the link to all of my Christmas Cookie Collection Recipes posted from a previous blog from December 2017 for you to enjoy!

https://dishingwithdiane.com/2017/12/22/Christmas-cookies-recipes-2017/

I hope you try some of the recipes and make them part of your holiday tradition!

Have a very joyous Holiday and a blessed New Year !

Until my next post, make every day a celebration!

Stay well, 

Diane

Thank you for visiting my blog and ask your family and friends to join DishingwithDiane and become part of the family!

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