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Fig and Goat Cheese Tart

Fig and Goat Cheese Tart



1 tablespoon olive oil

1 red onion, thinly sliced

2 teaspoons sugar

salt and pepper

1 package of refrigerated pie dough or batch of homemade dough

8 figs, quartered

4 ounces of goat cheese, crumbled

4 eggs

2 cups cream or whole milk



In a skillet over medium heat add a tablespoon of olive oil, the sliced red onion, sugar and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Sauté slowly until soft and caramelized, but not browned. Remove to a small bowl and allow to cool. Line a straight-sided quiche or tart pan with your chilled dough. Carefully press the dough into the pan. Trim excess dough from the sides, leaving a small amount of overhang due to the dough shrinking during baking. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line your dough with parchment paper and weigh it down with dried beans, pie weights or dried rice. Place it on a baking sheet and blind bake for 15 minutes. Carefully remove the paper and the weights and bake for another 10 minutes until golden and no longer appears wet. Remove from the oven and let cool for at least 30 minutes before filling.

When your crust is cooled, arrange the quartered figs across the bottom and top with the goat cheese and caramelized onions. In a mixing bowl whisk together the 4 eggs and the 2 cups of milk or cream and a small amount of salt and pepper. Pour the liquid into the crust. Fill almost to the top. Transfer to the oven and cook at 350 degrees for 45 to 60 minutes or until filling is firm. Allow to cool for 15 minutes before serving. 

Peach Paste

Peach Paste



10 large peaches, peeled and sliced

1/2 cup water

1/4 cup sugar

2 packets gelatin, melted as per package instructions



Put sliced peaches in pan and bring to boil with water and sugar. Cook for ten minutes

or until reduced by half. Cool and put peaches in a blender. Blend until smooth. Stir in

gelatin and pour into an 8x8 baking pan. Place in the refrigerator to set for about 6 hours.

Use a spread on crackers or on toast with various cheeses.

Almond Crusted Cheese Ball

Almond-Crusted Brandy Cheese Ball



8 ounces cream cheese

1 tablespoon brandy

1 tablespoon orange juice

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

2 cups sliced almonds

2 green onions thinly sliced



Place cream cheese in a bowl. Add brandy and orange juice and mix well. Season with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Add the green onions and mix until all ingredients are combined. Place sliced almonds on a cutting board. Spoon cream cheese onto middle of almonds then roll until the cream cheese is completely covered and formed into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for one hour.  If you like a bit of spice add a few chili flakes or a few shakes of tobasco sauce.

Almond Crusted Chicken Fingers

Almond-Crusted Chicken Fingers



3 large butter croissants

2 slices white bread

1/4 cup sliced almond

chicken breasts sliced into strips

1 cup flour seasoned with salt and pepper  

2 eggs, beaten



Pulse croissants and bread in food processor two to three seconds or until bread is finely chopped. Add almonds and pulse a couple of times just to coarsely chop. Dredge the sliced chicken in seasoned flour and shake off excess flour. One at a time dip chicken into beaten eggs and then coat with the homemade breadcrumbs. Heat cooking oil to 300 degrees and fry the chicken strips until crispy and light brown.

Caeser Dressing

Caesar Salad Dressing



1 clove garlic

Pinch of salt

6 anchovies

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

2 egg yolks

1 medium lemon, juiced

1/2 cup vegetable or olive oil

1/4 cup grated parmesan

Salt & pepper, to taste



On a cutting board mince the garlic with the salt until it reaches a paste-like consistency. Add the anchovies to the board. Chop and mash until smooth. Scrape off the board and place in a bowl. Whisk in the mustard, egg yolks and lemon juice. Begin drizzling in the oil and continue to whisk vigorously. Stir in the parmesan and season with salt and pepper.

Orange & Honey Roasted Pecan Salad

Orange & Honey-Roasted Pecan Salad



1 tablespoon honey, plus 1 teaspoon butter

2 tablespoons pecans

2 cups mixed salad leaves  

1/4 cup goat cheese

1/4 cup sliced cherry tomatoes

2 mandarin oranges, peeled cut into segments  

Italian dressing



In a nonstick sauté pan heat honey and butter over medium heat. Add pecans and coat with honey about 1 minute. Remove from heat and let cool. Arrange salad on serving plate. Sprinkle goat cheese on top. Arrange mandarin segments and sliced tomatoes on top. Dress with Italian dressing. Can also use Texas pink grapefruit instead of mandarin oranges. 

Crab Cakes with Beet & Goat Cheese Salad

Crab Cakes with Beet & Goat Cheese Salad


For the Crab Cakes:


1 pound lump crabmeat

1 egg

1 tablespoon mayonnaise

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

1/2 cup fresh corn kernels

1/2 cup bread crumbs



In a bowl combine the egg, mayonnaise, mustard, salt, pepper, lemon juice and parsley. Carefully fold in the crabmeat, corn and breadcrumbs. Form crab mixture into loose cakes. Heat a skillet over medium heat with two tablespoons of oil. Add the cakes and brown on each side. Cook about five minutes on each side and be careful when turning.


For the Salad:


1 cup tomato, cut in to small cubes

1 cup cooked beets, cut into small cubes

1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, sliced

1 tablespoon sliced almond

1/4 cup fresh goat cheese

8 leaves of romaine lettuce



In a bowl combine the first five ingredients and toss together. Place two romaine leaves on each plate and top with the other ingredients. Top with a vinaigrette dressing and serve with crab cakes. 

Blueberry Salad

Blueberry Salad



6 romaine leaves

2 tablespoons sliced almonds

1/4 chopped tomato

1/4 cup fresh blueberries

1/3 cup goat cheese crumbles

1 tablespoon Balsamic vinegar

3 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and pepper, to taste

1 teaspoon chopped basil leaves



On two salad plates arrange 3 romaine leaves on each. Top with the tomatoes, blueberries, almonds and goat cheese crumbles. For the dressing, whisk together remaining ingredients and drizzle over salad.

Leek & Potato Soup



2 large baking potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes

2 large leeks, tops trimmed, remaining portion cut in half lengthways, washed with running water then sliced thin

3 cups chicken broth or vegetable

2 tablespoons flour

2 tablespoons butter

1 chopped garlic clove




In a large pan melt butter. Add sliced washed leeks and garlic. Sauté for two minutes. Add chopped potatoes. Add flour and stir together. Cover with stock and bring to a boil. The soup is ready when potatoes are cooked

Leek & Potato Soup
Tomato Gazpacho

Tomato Gazpacho



4 large homegrown tomatoes, seeded and chopped

2 cups V-8 juice

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon red wine vinegar

¼ cup celery, finely chopped

¼ cup red onion, finely chopped

¼ cup cucumber, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1 tablespoon cilantro, minced

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper



Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and stir to combine. Chill for eight hours. Stir again. Spoon into small serving bowls or mugs. Garnish with garlic toast. Serves 4 to 6 depending on the size of the bowl.

Red Onion Marmalade

Red Onion Marmalade



2 large red onions or 4 Noonday Onions, sliced thin

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoons brown sugar

Salt and black pepper

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1 clove garlic



Add oil to a sauté pan and cook over low heat until onions are soft. Add salt, pepper and garlic. Add brown sugar. Stir until caramelized. Add vinegar and reduce by half. Allow to cool and refrigerate until ready to serve. 

Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

Roasted Red Pepper Sauce



1 twelve ounce jar roasted red peppers, plus one jar of cold water

1 large onion sliced thin

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 cloves garlic, chopped

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1 teaspoon chicken bouillon

1 teaspoon chili flakes

2 teaspoons corn starch, mixed with 1/4 cup water



In a large sauté pan over medium heat sauté the onions for two minutes. Add the jar of red peppers, along with their liquid and the jar of cold water. Add the bouillon, chili flakes and brown sugar. Bring all ingredients to a boil and simmer until onions are cooked through and soft. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely. After cooling, pour the mixture into a blender and puree until smooth. Return to the pan and bring to a boil. Add the cornstarch mixed with the water and stir until thick. Remove from heat and cool before serving. Serve with steak, chicken or other types of meat.


Lemon Chili Sauce

Lemon Chili Sauce



8 lemons, juice only

1 cup brown sugar

2 cubes chicken bouillon

1 cup warm water

1/2 onion chopped fine

2 tablespoons cornstarch, mixed with a small amount of water to make a paste

1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes, or more to taste



Place the juice in a pan with water, sugar and chili flakes. Add chicken bouillon, chopped onion and bring to a boil. Add cornstarch paste to thicken and whisk together. Cool for ten minutes and blend until smooth. This can be served hot or chilled. 

Roasted Leg of Lamb & Mint Sauce

Roasted Leg of Lamb & Mint Sauce



5 pound leg of lamb

Olive oil


Cracked black pepper

1 bunch rosemary

3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced

1 bunch of mint

2 teaspoons sugar

2 tablespoons very hot water

1/4 cup malt vinegar



Roughly chop the rosemary. Rub the leg with olive oil, salt, pepper, rosemary and garlic. Roast for about 2 hours, depending on the size of the leg, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest portion of meat registers 140 degrees.


For the sauce:

Pull mint leaves off of the stems. Place on a cutting board and chop finely. Sprinkle the sugar over the mint and continue to chop. Place the mint and sugar in a small bowl. Cover with the water and allow to steep for a couple of minutes. Add the vinegar and salt to taste.

Mixed Seafood Timbale

Mixed Seafood Timbale


2  eight ounce cod fillets
4 ounces crabmeat
1 egg white
Salt and pepper to taste
2 teaspoons lemon juice
8 large shrimp, uncooked
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon chopped parsley


Peel shrimp and leave the tails on four of them and set aside. Place the other four shrimp and the cod in a food processor and pulse to a rough paste. Add the cream and pulse until combined. Add the crab, lemon juice, salt, pepper, parsley and egg white and pulse until combined. Butter the inside of four ramekins that are two ounce in size. Fill the ramekins with the fish mixture and press a shrimp into the top of each one. Place ramekins in a baking dish and fill the dish half way up with hot water. Cook in a 350 degree oven for 25 minutes or until firm. After the ramekins have a chance to cool, using clean hands turn the ramekin over in one hand and carefully slide out the fish. Place on a plate on top of grilled polenta cake, potato cake or salad greens.

Seared Tuna Steaks

Seared Tuna Steaks



2 eight ounce tuna steaks

1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

1 teaspoon lemon salt flakes

1 teaspoon ground garlic

1 teaspoon sesame seeds

1/2 teaspoon ground chili flaked



Mix together all of the seasonings. This mixture can be stored in an airtight container. Season the fish on all sides with the seasoning mix. Heat skillet with two tablespoons of oil   Sear each side of tuna for 30 seconds. Place on chilled plate and cool in fridge for 2 hours. Serve thinly sliced on a bed of sauerkraut  Serve with soy dipping sauce.  

Spaghetti Squash & Shrimp

Spaghetti Squash & Shrimp with Garlic-Parsley Tapenade



1 large spaghetti squash

2 tablespoons olive oil, salt and pepper

1 dozen large gulf shrimp (U12 or 15)

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 shallots, diced small

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

2 tablespoons grated Parmesan

Coarse salt and ground pepper



Make the garlic-parsley tapenade (recipe below) and set aside. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut spaghetti squash in half and clean the seeds out with a spoon. Drizzle with the olive oil and rub with salt and pepper. Turn the squash halves flesh side down on a baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes or until the inside of the squash is tender. Let cool for 15 minutes. Using a fork, run the tines of the fork down the length of the squash flesh pulling out long strands of squash. Continue until all of the flesh is pulled out of the skin. Place the strands loosely in a bowl. Cover to keep warm while cooking the shrimp.

In a large bowl combine the shrimp, olive oil, shallots, garlic, fresh parsley, salt & pepper. Heat a grill or sauté pan to high and add the shrimp. Cook until pink and tails curl.  Divide the squash between plates and top with shrimp & juices from the pan. Add a spoon full of tapenade to the top of the shrimp.




Dirty Mudbugs (a.k.a. Dirty Rice with Crawfish)



2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1/2 pound ground pork

1/2 pound chicken livers, puréed

1 1/2 cups chicken broth, divided

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper

1/2 cup chopped celery

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

6 cups cooked long-grain rice

1 can (eight ounce) chopped tomatoes, drained

1 pound crawfish tail meat, cooked (available at Brookshire’s)

Garnish: green onions and parsley



In a large Dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add pork, and chicken liver; cook until browned and crisp. Add 1/2 cup chicken broth, scrape up browned bits from the pan, and cook until liquid evaporates. Add another 1/2 cup broth, onion, bell pepper, and celery, and cook until vegetables are softened. Add garlic, and cook for an additional minute. Add salt, black pepper, cayenne, cooked rice, tomatoes, crawfish and remaining 1/2 cup broth. Stir to combine well and cook over low heat until all ingredients are warmed through. Garnish with green onion and parsley, if desired. 


Dirty Mudbugs
Garlic-Parsley Tapenade

Garlic-Parsley Tapenade



4 cloves garlic

1 medium white onion

1/2 cup parsley

1/2 cup melted butter

1 cup olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste



Place the garlic, onion and parsley in a blender and pulse until roughly chopped.  Add the butter and olive oil and pulse to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper. If too thick add a little more oil.


Chicken & Vegetable White Lasagna

Chicken & Vegetable White Lasagna


For the Sauce:

4 tablespoons butter

4 tablespoons flour

3 cup warm milk

Salt and pepper

1 teaspoon chicken bouillon

1 pound ricotta cheese


Melt butter in a thick bottomed sauté pan. Add flour and cook for two minutes or until it

reaches a light blond color. Add warm milk and bring to the boil. Take off heat and stir

in ricotta cheese. Season with salt, pepper and chicken bouillon. Add more milk if sauce is too thick.


For the Lasagna:

9  lasagna noodles

2 chicken breasts, poached in water & sliced

1/2 each of red, orange and yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 cup sliced mushrooms

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced

1 cup green peas

2 large tomatoes, seeded and chopped

2 cups loosely packed fresh spinach, cooked and squeezed

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated


Sauté the peppers, onion, and mushrooms in a small amount of olive oil until soft. Remove from heat and stir in the peas, tomatoes and spinach. In a 9x13 baking dish layer the bottom of the dish with 3 lasagna noodles, 1/2 of the vegetables, 1/2 of the chicken and some of the white sauce. Repeat with another layer and finish by topping the last layer of noodles with the last of the white sauce and the Parmesan cheese. Bake in a 350 degree oven for thirty minutes. Serve with fresh garden salad and garlic bread. 

New Zealand Pavlova

New Zealand Pavlova



10 egg whites

1 1/2 cups sugar

2 tablespoons corn starch

2 cups heavy cream, beaten to stiff peaks

2 cups assorted fresh fruit, kiwis, berries, cherries, mandarin oranges




Beat egg whites until thick, fluffy and stiff. Mix together sugar and cornstarch and add to egg

whites one spoon at a time while continuing to beat the egg whites. Be patient. Whipping the egg whites can take up to 15 minutes & will vary with humidity. Place parchment paper on cookie sheet and draw 8" round in middle. Using a long spatula or knife, spoon egg mixture in the middle and carefully shape into a tall cake.  Bake for 45 minutes at 350 degrees. When it cooks it will puff, expand and get shorter. It is ready when it begins to crack and  the outside is lightly toasted. Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature. It will begin to deflate and that's okay. Can be baked a day ahead of time and left out at room temperature. When ready to serve invert onto a plate, remove parchment paper and top with a thick layer of fresh whipped cream. Top with assorted fresh berries and fruit.

English Sherry Trifle with Egg Custard

English Sherry Trifle with Egg Custard



1 can mandarin oranges

1/2 cup strawberry jam

1/2 cup Harvey’s Bristol Cream Sherry

1 pound cake, cubed

1 cup heavy whipping cream, whipped to stiff peaks

2 cups prepared egg custard



Make custard as per recipe. In a large bowl whisk together the liquid from the can of oranges, the sherry and the jam. Place a layer of pound cake over the bottom of a dish. Spread a layer of the liquid over the pound cake and then a layer of oranges and custard. Continue to layer until all ingredients are used. Refrigerate and then top with whipped cream and serve.


For the Custard:


2 cups milk

2 tablespoons sugar

2 egg yolks

2 tablespoons cornstartch


Slowly warm milk and sugar over low heat in a saucepan. In a separate bowl combine the egg yolks and cornstarch. Remove the milk from the heat and slowly add the milk mixture to the egg yolks while stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Pour back into the saucepan and constantly stir while brining to a simmer and allowing to thicken. When it begins to thicken remove from heat and keep stirring. Set aside to cool before adding to the trifle.


Chocolate Cake



6 ounces butter

8 ounces sugar

3 eggs

10 ounces flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

2 tablespoons cocoa (dissolved in 1/2 cup boiling water)

2 ounces chocolate chips



Using an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar. When fluffy, continue beating and add the eggs one at a time. Add cocoa alternately with sifted dry ingredients. Fold in the chocolate chips. Pour into greased cake tin and bake in a 350 degree preheated oven for 45 to 60 minutes. Spread fruit between layers and top with your favorite icing or whipped cream. 

Chocolate Cake

Limoncello Tiramisu With Mascarpone Mousse


1 package ladyfinger cookies
2 cups limoncello
16 ounces mascarpone cheese
5 egg yolks
3/4 sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 cups whipped cream
Powdered sugar, for dusting


To make the mousse, place the egg yolks and sugar in a large metal bowl and place over a pan of boiling water. Whisk until it becomes thick and creamy. Set aside to cool for a few minutes.

Add the mascarpone and whisk until completely blended. Stir in the lemon juice and a tablespoon of limoncello.

To assemble the tiramisu, pour the remaining limoncello in a wide, shallow bowl. Individually dip the ladyfingers into the limoncello for 1 to 2 seconds.

In a 9 x 13 pan, line up the ladyfingers to cover the bottom of the pan. Top with a thick layer of mousse and then another layer of dunked ladyfingers. Add more limoncello to the dipping bowl, if necessary.

Top the second layer of ladyfingers with another layer of mousse. Spread the whipped cream over the second layer of mousse. Refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight. Cut into squares to serve. Serve with a dusting of powdered sugar.

Limoncello Tiramisu
Vanilla Souffle

Vanilla Soufflé



2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/3 cup, plus 1/4 cup granulated sugar, plus more for dishes

2 cups whole milk

1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise and scraped

3/4 cup, plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

4 large eggs, separated

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 large egg white

1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

Powdered Sugar, for dusting




Butter and sugar eight 6-ounce soufflé dishes, including the rim of each dish. In a medium saucepan over high heat, combine milk and vanilla bean with scrapings. Bring to a boil, and remove from heat. Cover, and let steep for 1 hour. Remove bean from milk, and reserve for another use.

In a medium bowl, combine flour, 1/3 cup granulated sugar, and salt. Add 1/2 cup steeped milk, whisking to combine and form a paste. Transfer paste to saucepan with milk, and cook over medium heat while whisking constantly until thickened and smooth, about 5 to 8 minutes. If the mixture begins to get lumpy, remove from heat, and whisk until smooth. Remove saucepan from heat.

Prepare an ice-water bath: Fill a large bowl with cold water and ice. Add egg yolks and vanilla extract to milk mixture, and whisk to combine. Transfer soufflé base mixture to a shallow 1-quart container. Cover surface directly with plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming. Set saucepan in the ice-water bath to cool completely. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Remove soufflé base from refrigerator, and bring to room temperature, about 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees with rack in center. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip 5 egg whites on low speed with cream of tartar until foamy.

Gradually add remaining 1/4 cup sugar while slowly increasing the speed of the mixer until it is on high. Whip until egg whites are stiff and shiny.

Gently fold egg whites into the soufflé base in three additions. Divide between prepared dishes, gently tap on each dish on the work surface, and place on a baking sheet. Transfer to oven, and bake until dark golden and the sides appear sponge-ike, 16 to 20 minutes. Remove from oven, and dust with powdered sugar. Serve immediately with seasonal berries.

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