Poached Pears 6 Servings


   6  Bartlett Pears, peeled but with stem and base left intact

   3/4 cup water

  1 teaspoon lemon juice

  1/2 cup sugar

  Strawberry Sauce

                  Preheat the oven to 350 Degrees

                 Stand the pears in a large casserole, add the water, lemon juice, and sugar.

                 Cover and bake for 45 minutes

                 Remove from oven and set aside.

                When ready to serve, place the pears on a serving platter, pouring the cooking

                    liquid over them.

                Top with strawberry sauce.


2 cups fresh ( or frozen, thawed) strawberries, washed and hulled

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon lemon juice

3 tablespoon cornstarch

1/3 cup brandy  ( optional)

red food coloring ( optional)

Place the strawberries in a medium-sized saucepan, add the water, sugar and lemon

juice, and bring to a boil over moderate heat.  When the strawberries are soft, 

remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.

Pour the mixture into a blender or food processor and puree until smooth.

Strain through a sieve, then return the mixture to the saucepan. 

Gradually stir in the cornstarch. brandy, and food coloring. 

 Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until thickened.






1 egg yolk*

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 anchovy fillets, mashed

Scant 1 cup vegetable oil

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 large head romaine lettuce, cleaned and cut into 1 to 2-inch pieces

Freshly grated Parmesan

2 cups croutons



  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolk, lemon juice, garlic, Worcestershire, pepper flakes, mustard, and anchovies. Slowly whisk in the oils to emulsify. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.
  2. Place the lettuce in a large bowl. Sprinkle with Parmesan and black pepper. Drizzle with desired amount of dressing and toss well. Sprinkle top with croutons.

Recipe Courtesy of Wolfgang Punk



Eggplant Rollatini


  • 2 eggplants, cut lengthwise into 1/8 or 1/4 inch slices
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1/4 cup milk 
  • bread crumbs
  • salt to taste 
  • vegetable or olive oil 
  • Prepared tomato sauce 


  • 1 ½ pounds ricotta cheese
  • 1 pound shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup Parmesan or Romano cheese grated 
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder


Dip the eggplant slices in egg and milk mixture, then coat with bread crumbs, both sides. In a large frying pan, heat oil over medium-high heat until hot and fry eggplant until golden brown; drain on paper towels. Set aside.In a large bowl, mix together all of the filling ingredients.In a large baking pan, place sauce on bottom of pan to cover. Spread a thin layer of cheese mixture onto each slice of eggplant. Roll up tightly and place seam side down in baking pan. Once the pan is filled with the rollatini pour sauce over the rolls and top with shredded mozzarella cheese. Also, sprinkle some Parmesan or Romano cheese over top. Bake in preheated 350° oven for 20 - 25 minutes until cheese is melted and lightly browned. 







  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened, plus more for  preparing the muffin tin
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 2/3 cup sugar, plus 1 tablespoon for the top of the muffins
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries, rinsed and dried.


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly brush a 12-muffin tin with butter and set aside. Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.

In a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or with an electric hand-held mixer in a large bowl, cream the butter, zest, and 2/3 cup of the sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Remove the bowl from the mixer.

Using a rubber spatula. fold the flour in 3 parts into the butter mixture, alternating with the milk in 2 parts, until just combined. Fold in the blueberries. Take care not to over mix the batter. Divide the batter evenly into the muffin tin and sprinkle the tops with sugar. Bake until golden brown, about 25 minutes. Cool muffins in the pan on a rack. Serve warm. 




Leek & Potato Soup

2 bunches Leeks

6 Medium to Large Potatoes

1 Cup of Half and Half

2-3 Tbsp of Butter

1/2 Cup Chopped Onion

1 Quart of Chicken Broth

1 Tsp Powdered Garlic

Salt and Pepper to Taste

2 Tbsp of Fresh Parsley chopped

4 ounces - Cheddar cheese, shredded (optional)


Clean and chop leeks. Heat butter, add leeks and onion, cook until tender. Add cubed potatoes and broth, and cook until tender. Add Half & Half, and simmer 20 minutes more. Add seasonings and adjust if necessary. Add parsley and cheddar cheese; stir and serve. 




Marinated Zucchini


  • 4 zucchini 
  • 1/4 cup olive oil 
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar 
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh or dried mint leaves
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped 
  • Salt and pepper to taste 


Slice zucchini with skins on. In a large skilled heat oil and fry until golden brown. Set aside. In a medium casserole layer the fried zucchini with vinegar, chopped garlic, salt, pepper and mint leaves. 

Cover casserole and let zucchini marinate at room temperature. You may serve it hot or at room temperature. 




Easy Corned Beef and Cabbage

  • 3 hrs 30 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins,
  • Cook: 3 hrs 15 mins
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings

What You'll Need

  • 1 (3 1/2- to 5-pound) corned beef brisket
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt (or to taste)
  • 1/2 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Optional: spice packet from the corned beef package
  • 2 pounds red potatoes (cut in half)
  • 4 carrots (peeled, cut into chunks)
  • 1 onion (large dice)
  • 3 ribs celery (large dice)
  • 1 -2 heads of fresh cabbage

How to Make It

  1. Place the corned beef, 1 teaspoon of the salt, pepper, bay leaf, and contents of the optional spice packet into a large pot along with three quarts of cold water.
  2. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Turn down the heat to low and simmer for 2 1/2 hours.
  3. Add the remaining salt if needed, potatoes, carrots, onions, and celery. Simmer covered for 30 minutes.
  4. Add the cabbage wedges and cook for another 30 minutes or until the potatoes and vegetables are tender.
  5. Remove from the pot and let rest for 10 minutes, loosely covered with aluminum foil. Remove the bay leaf and discard.
  6. Slice the corned beef against the grain and serve in a bowl topped with cabbage, vegetables, and some of the cooking liquid. Accompany with dark bread and mustard on the side.


Variations on this recipe are limited only to what the chef prefers, really. A small peeled and diced rutabaga or a few turnips can be added along with the vegetables for a more earthy flavor. Some sliced parsnips can be substituted for the potatoes or included along with them for a bit of variety.For a slightly different flavor, use sweet onions instead of standard yellow onions and add with the potatoes, carrots, and celery. Alternatively, try adding a few small peeled boiling onions.    




Broccoli Salad

 1 bunch broccoli
2 lemons
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Break apart broccoli into florets.  You can also cut up stems.  Steam broccoli until fork tender.  Do not over cook.  In a large bowl put in broccoli.  Squeeze the juice of the lemons and add the olive oil.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and stir until well coated.  You can either serve it at room temperature or refrigerate.




Do you like a moist potato or a dry fluffy one? How about the skin? Dry and crisp or with a light coating of oil? Do you like the skin to have a light coating of salt or be rolled in oil and dried herbs? All of these choices are possible, let’s start at the beginning.

Most of the upscale steak houses such as Morton’s or Smith & Wollensky use an Idaho® Russet Burbank variety potato. They typically choose a 40 or 50 count potato, which weighs about a pound each. Budget steakhouses such as Sizzler or Golden Corral typically use a slightly smaller potato, such as a 70 count or 80 count, the same size you’ll find at most grocery stores in the loose potato displays. Since they use their ovens for lots of different food cooking applications the chances are that they are cooking the potatoes longer and hotter than you do at home. The potato is done when the internal temperature is 210°F or a minimum of 185°F.

If you want a little moister baked russet potato choose the Russet Norkotah. This is the variety commonly sold in grocery stores. Personally I find that this variety needs to be baked a little longer, typically ten more minutes.

Of course, I am assuming that you looked for the “Grown in Idaho®” seal on the nearby bagged russets and found that Idaho is one of the few states (in fact, the first) to label the variety right on the bag or plastic white enclosure tag, called a quick lock. Look for the words Russet Norkotah or Russet Burbank or other Idaho variety names such as Ranger, Umatilla, Alturas, etc. If you find a variety you like, ask the produce buyer to continue to stock it.

Don’t store the potatoes in the refrigerator; the natural starches will convert to sugar and the potato will taste sweet when baked. Store in a cool dark place such as your pantry or where you store your dry cereals.

Don’t wrap the potato in foil, this just steams the potato and makes the skin wet. Yes, some restaurants do this but primarily they are trying to hold the potatoes longer and dress them up. The brown skin may not be the prettiest vegetable but it does not improve the flavor when the 80% or so water content is trapped inside a wrapper.

At home, I just set the oven at 400°F and then wash off the potatoes using a brush to get any dirt or sand out of the deep set eyes. I use a fork to pierce the potato on both sides to let steam escape and then I place the potatoes (with spacing around each) in the oven right on the racks so they will cook evenly and faster than if bunched together or on a cold metal tray. Use one hour as your guideline, some potatoes may bake in a little less time but with various sizes and different oven temps (have you had your oven checked to see if it is the same temp as the dial? The gas or electric service usually will do this and calibrate the oven for free).

When a potato is done baking you can usually start to smell the aroma leaking out of the oven or vent. Pull one of the potatoes and poke it with a fork till you don’t see the tines of the fork. Just like baking a cake, the fork should come out nearly clean once the potato is thoroughly baked. Or, use a meat thermometer and check the temp to see if you are above 185°F. If you need to hold a potato until dinner is ready, turn off the oven but keep the door closed and the heat will stay in for another 10-15 minutes. That’s about how long it takes for me to start a steak on the BBQ, 8 minutes on the first side and six on the second if the propane gas has already heated the BBQ grill to 300-400°F and is turned on high.

Don’t cut a baked potato with a knife, it just compresses the starch cells and when the interior glazes over the butter or sour cream will make it soggy. I open the potato with a fork, cutting a cross into the top of the potato. Then I push in both ends of the potato and it will blossom open, just like at your favorite steak house. If the potato is still moist inside I pop it into the micro wave for 30-45 seconds, pull it out and put on salt, pepper, sour cream or cottage cheese or low fat yogurt. For a healthier option (which I love for a lunch entree) I put fresh salsa on the potato with no dairy products. It tastes great.





 Bette's Artichokes 

4 medium-sized artichokes

 2 cups breadcrumbs

 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

 1 tablespoon garlic powder

 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted

 ¼ cup water

3/4 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons parsley flakes


Rinse the artichokes well, remove the small outer leaves from the bottom row around artichoke, cut off the stem and slice about 1 inch off of the top. In a large bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, and pepper. Add the melted butter, water and oil and mix well.  If needed, add more water or oil to make stuffing very moist.Turn the artichokes upside down and press firmly to spread the leaves. Turn right side up and stand the artichokes in a large pot with about 1 ½ inches of water in the bottom. Cover and steam over medium-high heat about 20-25 minutes or until the artichokes are tender, checking the water level occasionally and adding more water as needed.  Stuff the breadcrumb mixture into the center and inside surrounding layers of leaves.  Put onto microwavable plate and microwave for approximately 3-4 minutes or before serving put into pan covered tightly with foil and place in 350° oven for approximately 20 minutes.    





  • 1/2 pound broccoli rabe 
  • 1 small onion, diced 
  • 3 garlic clove, diced 
  • 1/2  pound sausage, no casing 
  • 3/4  pound ricotta cheese (whole milk) 
  • 1/2  cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 3  tablespoons grated cheese 
  • 1 egg
  • 2 pie crusts for bottom and top
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil 


Sauté garlic and oil until lightly browned and add broccoli rabe; sauté until tender. Strain the broccoli rabe and garlic mixture to remove the excess liquid. Chop the mixture finely, and set aside for later use. Cook the sausage meat and the diced onions until the mixture is fully cooked.  Drain the sausage mixture of any excess liquid.  Make sure the sausage and onion mixture is chopped, without any large pieces of meat. Add sausage mixture to the broccoli rabe mixture.  Blend well.  Next, add the ricotta, mozzarella, grated cheese and egg.   Stir until mixed well.  Add broccoli rabe and sausage mixture to the pie crust, and distribute evenly.  Add pie crust over the top.  Cut a vent hole in the center of the pie. Pinch the edges of the two crusts together. Brush the top of the pie and the edges with a beaten egg yolk.    Place pie on a cookie sheet, and bake at 375° for 45 minutes to an hour, or until golden brown. Let it sit for 5 minutes before serving 3 





4 strips thick-cut pancetta

2 tablespoons butter

1 pound Brussels sprouts, halved

1/2 large onion, chopped

Salt and freshly ground black pepper




  1. Cook pancetta in a large skillet over medium-high heat until crispy. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate, then roughly chop. In same pan with pancetta fat, melt butter over high heat. Add onions and Brussels Sprouts and cook, stirring occasionally, until sprouts are golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and toss pancetta back into pan. Serve immediately.




Makes  6 to 8 servings

6  Large Apples  ( A mix of different apples is great)

3  Tablespoons sugar

3  Teaspoons ground cinnamon

2  Teaspoons instant tapioca

1  Baked  9-inch pie shell

2 Tablespoons unsalted butter


1 1/2 cups flour

1 Teaspoon ground cinnamon

3/4 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup ( 1 1/2 sticks) butter

Preheat the oven to 375*F

Peel, core, and slice the apples and place in a large bowl. Add the sugar,

cinnamon, and tapioca and stir together until the apples are well coated.

Spoon the apple mixture into the pie shell. Dot with butter or margarine

and set aside.

For the crumb topping, place the flour, cinnamon, and sugar in a large

bowl and cut in the butter with a pastry blender or two knives until the

mixture has the texture of course cornmeal. Sprinkle the crumb mixture on top of the apples.

Bake the pie for 40 to 45 minutes.

Enjoy the Taste of Fall




Blueberry Torte

Yield: 6-8 servings


  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter      
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup sugar 
  • 3 egg yolks 
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch 
  • 1 cup flour 
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder 
  • 2 cups fresh New Jersey Blueberries 
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon 


Preheat the oven to 350°. Use an electric mixer, combine the butter, vanilla, 1/2 cup sugar, egg yolks, cornstarch, flour, and baking powder. When well blended, press the mixture into the bottom and sides of a greased 8-inch square or 9-inch round baking pan. 

In a large bowl, mix the blueberries with the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and the cinnamon until the fruit is well coated. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 1 hour. Serve hot or cold. 





  • 4 cups fresh blackberries
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • Whipped cream (optional)
  • Garnish: fresh mint sprig

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 375°. Place blackberries in a lightly greased 8-inch square baking dish; sprinkle with lemon juice. Stir together egg, sugar, and flour in a medium bowl until mixture resembles coarse meal. Sprinkle over fruit. Drizzle melted butter over topping. Bake at 375° for 35 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes. Serve warm with whipped cream, if desired. Garnish with fresh mint sprig, if desired.

Step 2

For a neat presentation, bake for the same amount of time in 6 (8-oz.) ramekins on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet.


Serve this cobbler after your guests enjoy a simple, but impressive summer barbecue. This dish is vibrant and sweet. It would also be a perfect dessert for your Memorial Day barbecue.

This is a dish the entire family will enjoy. Swap out the blackberries for strawberries or peaches, if you please.


Bette's Roasted Grape Tomato Bruschettas


 Bette's Roasted Grape Tomato 


2 pints grape tomatoes 

5 garlic cloves, chopped 

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper 

1/2 cup olive oil

salt and black pepper to taste

1 teaspoon rosemary 

1 teaspoon oregano 

Eight slices of bruschetta 


Preheat the oven to 400°. On a large baking sheet, toss the tomatoes with the garlic, crushed red pepper and 3 tablespoons of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast the tomatoes for about 20 minutes, until they burst and their skins begin to shrivel, stir once during roasting.

In a medium bowl, pour the remaining olive oil.  Add the rosemary and oregano with the olive oil. Add the tomatoes and their juices, stir gently and let stand for 30 minutes.

Reduce the oven temperature to 350°.  Arrange the bread on a baking sheet and toast for 10 minutes, or until crisp. Spoon the tomatoes and juices over the bruschetta and sprinkle with salt before serving.

Bette's Broccoli Rabe And Sausage


Broccoli Rabe and Sausage



  • 2 pounds broccoli rabe (Approximately  2 Bunches)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil 
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced      
  • 1 pound sausage, hot or sweet 
  • ½ teaspoon hot red crushed pepper      
  • Salt & pepper to taste 
  • Cooked pasta (optional) 


In a large frying pan, brown sausage. After sausage is cooked, cut into approximately 1/4" circular pieces and set aside. Cut off about 2 inches from the bottom stem of the broccoli rabe; rinse well and drain. In a large pot, put in broccoli rabe and add approximately 4 cups of water, cover and steam on medium-high until tender, stirring occasionally.  In colander, drain broccoli rabe and set aside. In the same empty pot put in oil and garlic and sauté garlic until lightly browned. Add broccoli rabe, sausage, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper to the sautéed garlic and oil and stir together. If desired, place broccoli rabe over cooked pasta and serve.  

Mama Louise's Escarole 'n' Beans


Mom's Best



  • 2 heads escarole 
  • 1/4 cup olive oil 
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped 
  • 2 cans Cannellini beans 
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot red crushed pepper   
  • Salt & pepper to taste 


Cut bottom core off escarole and rinse leaves well.  In a large pot, put in escarole leaves and add 4 cups of water; steam until leaves are tender.  Drain in colander and set aside. Place olive oil and garlic in the same pot and sauté garlic until golden brown. Add escarole and the remaining ingredients into the pot and stir. Heat thoroughly 

Bette's Broccoli Salad



Broccoli Salad

Yield: 8 servings

Salad Ingredients

  • 2 heads broccoli, cut into small pieces 
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins or dried cranberries      
  • 1/2 small onion, red or white, diced     
  • 1/2 pound bacon, cooked and crumbled     
  • 3/4 cup of cashew nuts

Dressing Ingredients

  • 1-1/4 cups mayonnaise 
  • 3-4 tablespoons red wine or balsamic  vinegar     
  • 1/3 cup sugar 


In a large bowl, mix together all the salad ingredients. In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients. Pour over broccoli and stir until well coated.  Chill and serve.