Dutch Christmas Cookies

3 1/4 cups flour
¼ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup butter, softened
1 large egg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon anise oil (ground anise seed would work as well)
2 tablespoons light or dark corn syrup
In a medium bowl, sift together flour with baking soda and salt.

In a large bowl, beat sugar and butter at high speed until light and fluffy. Beat in egg, then spices, anise oil and corn syrup, blending well.

At low speed, stir in flour one cup at a time until well mixed. Cover and refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight.

To bake: Heat oven to 375 degrees. Divide dough into 8 sections or more and shape into 14-inch ropes. Slice into ¼-inch slices. Arrange 3/4-inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets and bake until lightly browned, about 8 minutes.

Cool on wire racks, and store in an airtight container. They exceptionally well and even improve over time. We make them early in December and they last well past Christmas.

The dough also freezes well, tightly wrapped. Roll into ropes before freezing. Then when you’re ready to bake them, slice while frozen and bake a couple of minutes longer than usual.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Use Facebook to Comment on this Post

Lisa’s Mostaccioli Recipe


1 LB Hamburger
1 Box Mostaccioli Noodles
1 Package Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
1 Can Spaghetti Sauce


1. Preheat oven 350
2. Brown 1lb hamburger, drain fat
3. Add 1 can spaghetti sauce to meat
4. Boil 1 box of mostaccioli noodles, drain water In a square pan add half the noodles, then all of the sauce, mix.
5. Continue adding a few more noodles at a time and mixing, until pan is mostly full. Don’t want to use too many noodles,because then it will be too dry
6. Sprinkle lots of shredded mozzarella cheese on top
7. Bake for about 10 minutes or a little longer if the cheese isn’t totally melted

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Use Facebook to Comment on this Post

Italian Spaghetti Sauce with Meatballs‏ Recipe


1 pound lean ground beef
1 cup fresh bread crumbs
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1 egg, beaten


3/4 cup chopped onion
5 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
2 (28 ounce) cans whole peeled tomatoes
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon white sugar
1 bay leaf
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
3/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper


In a large bowl, combine ground beef, bread crumbs, parsley, Parmesan, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, garlic powder and beaten egg. Mix well and form into 12 balls. Store, covered, in refrigerator until needed.

In a large saucepan over medium heat, saute onion and garlic in olive oil until onion is translucent. Stir in tomatoes, salt, sugar and bay leaf. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 90 minutes. Stir in tomato paste, basil, 1/2 teaspoon pepper and meatballs and simmer 30 minutes more. Serve.


Source: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/italian-spaghetti-sauce-with-meatballs/

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Use Facebook to Comment on this Post

Crock Pot Barbecue Spareribs


Cooking Time: 4 to 5 Hours on Low

3 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon salt
1 Tablespoon teaspoon pepper (changed since new pepper is very spicy)
2 (2 1/2‐ to 3‐pound) racks of spareribs
1 cup barbecue sauce

1. Mix paprika, sugar, cayenne, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 tablespoon pepper together in bowl and rub evenly over ribs.

2. Arrange ribs upright in slow cooker with meaty sides facing outward. Cover and cook until ribs are tender, 4 to 5 hours on low.

3. Adjust oven rack 10 inches from broiler element and heat broiler. Place wire rack in aluminum foil-lined rimmed baking sheet and spray with vegetable oil spray. Transfer ribs, meaty side up, to prepared sheet. Brush ribs with some of barbecue sauce, then broil until browned and sticky, 10 to 15 minutes, flipping and brushing with additional sauce every few minutes.

4. Serve ribs with remaining sauce.


1. Baby back ribs or St. Louis style ribs fit best in most crock pots.

2. I eased up on the cayenne pepper, a little spicy for my taste.

3. For one rack of ribs, I went with 4 hours of cook time.

4. I used Sweet Baby Ray’s Honey BBQ sauce.

Original recipe:



Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Use Facebook to Comment on this Post

Asparagus Fritter Sticks with Dill Mustard

Makes: 12 servings
Yield: 5 cups asparagus sticks 1/2 cup dip
Prep 10 mins
Cook 3 mins per batch
Oven 200°F


1 cup cold water
2/3 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cornstarch
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Vegetable oil for deep-fat frying
1 pound green, white, and/or purple asparagus, trimmed
1/2 cup Dijon-style mustard
2 tablespoons snipped fresh dill weed
2 tablespoons honey


1. Place an ovenproof dish in oven. Preheat oven to 200 degrees F. For batter, in a large bowl whisk together the water, cornmeal, flour, cornstarch, egg, baking powder, and salt until well combined. Batter will be lumpy.
2. In a large skillet heat about 1 inch of oil to 350 degrees F. Working with 3 or 4 spears at a time, dip asparagus into batter, letting excess batter drip into dish. Carefully slide coated spears into hot oil. Fry for 3 to 4 minutes, depending on thickness of spears, until golden. Remove with tongs. Place on paper towels to drain, then transfer to baking dish in warm oven while frying remaining spears.
3. Meanwhile, for dip, in a small bowl combine mustard, dill weed, and honey. Serve with asparagus fritter sticks.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Use Facebook to Comment on this Post

Carbonara with Pan Seared Scallops

Carbonara with Pan Seared Scallops
by Laureen King from Art and the Kitchen
Prep Time 10-15 mins.     Cook time: 15-20 mins    Serves: 4
Ingredients for Scallops:
  • 12-16 large scallops (3-4 per person)
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • Salt & Pepper

Ingredients for Carbonara:

  • 8 slices of thick cut bacon diced (I try to find bacon with less fat, or cut away excess fat)
  • 1 shallot finely sliced
  • 1 clove garlic (leave whole)
  • 4 green onions
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 1 cup parmigiano reggiano grated
  • fresh ground pepper
  • pasta of your choice (I used Linguine, but most recipes use Spaghetti)


*This recipe tastes best served VERY fresh, so don’t let it sit or Scallops and Pasta dry out quickly . Have ALL your ingredients and pots ready to go to make easy work of this.

*Start water boiling for pasta.
*Oven on warm

Pots required
: large pot for cooking pasta, skillet for frying bacon, garlic and shallots, skillet for pan searing scallops, large bowl for combining pasta and sauce.

Perfect Pan Seared Scallops
  1. Blot scallops with paper towel to remove any water. Salt and pepper.
  2. Heat large skillet, add 2 tablespoons olive oil.
  3. Make sure skillet is hot before adding scallops but not smoking.
  4. Add scallops leaving plenty of space between. Overcrowding the pan will drop the pan temperature and cause scallops to steam rather than sear. (may have to do in batches)
  5. Sear for about 2-4 minutes or when bottom is a nice golden brown. Don’t move them around in the pan or you will prevent them from forming that nice brown crust. After a couple of minutes have peek under to see if golden brown.
  6. Turn  to sear other side. (about 1-3 more minutes)
  7. Add 2 tablespoons of butter to pan now.
  8. Spoon the melted butter over the scallops as the other side finishes cooking.
  9. Transfer to paper towel covered plate.
  10. Keep warm in oven.

Pasta Carbonara

  1. Start cooking pasta.
  2. In small bowl mix together cream, egg yolks and 3/4 of cheese.
  3. In large skillet cook bacon until crisp, add shallots and 1/2 green onions.
  4. Smash down garlic clove a bit, add to bacon. (remove prior to adding pasta)
  5. When pasta is finished cooking, drain well, then add to skillet of bacon.
  6. Toss well, then transfer to large bowl.
  7. Add cream mixture to pasta and combined well. Make sure pasta is still hot in order to cook the eggs and melt the cheese. 

Arrange pasta on plate, top with seared scallops, add some fresh ground pepper, grated parmesan, and green onions.

The original site has great step by step photos as well.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Use Facebook to Comment on this Post

Great Steak Recipe



Rosemary (sprigs or ground)
Cooking Oil
Olive Oil

  1. Buy a thick cut of meat like a porterhouse. If its more than 2″ thick it’s usually better. Look for a lot of marbling (little white lines of fat through the meat). The more the better.
  2. Place the meat unwrapped on a rack in the fridge overnight (watch out for cross-contamination! make sure your fridge is clean). This ages the meat and helps dry it out. Then like an hour before you cook take it out of the fridge, pat it down with paper towels, and leave it out until your ready to season.
  3. Start a frying a pan on medium-high heat with a small amount of vegetable oil.
  4. Preheat your oven with an oven safe pan inside (preferably cast iron) to 500F degrees.
  5. Season both sides of the steak with coarse salt and a teaspoon of olive oil.
  6. Sear the steak in the frying pan for 1-2 minutes each side,
  7. Place the steak in the oven, with about three tablespoons of room temperature butter and three sprigs of fresh rosemary, works better directly applied to meat.
  8. After about 3 minutes, open the oven (there will be lots of smoke, run your fan), and flip the steak. 2-3 more minutes, pull it out. If you like it more on the well done side, leave it a little longer. Do not leave it for more than like 5 minutes because you might as well just make hamburgers. 2 minutes = rare.
  9. Remove from oven and use a wooden spoon or large soup spoon tilt the pan and repeatedly spoon the butter and juices onto the steak.
  10. Let the meat rest for about 5 minutes.
  11. Serve with mash potatoes and vegetable.

Notes: Thanks to Reddit for this great recipe. I modified it a little from my experience.

  • A little rosemary goes a long way.
  • Pre-heat frying pan and oven well.
  • This recipe creates a lot of smoke be prepared!
  • The original recipe was all done in one cooking pan.
  • One variation would be to sear the steak on a grill.
  • When flipping the steak use tongs, don’t pierce it with a fork.
  • Letting the steak rest is important, just because it’s out the of the oven doesn’t mean it’s done cooking. Resting allows the steak to finish cooking and re-absorb the moisture released during the high heat phase of cooking.
  • New York Strip = great, Rib-eye = ok.
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Use Facebook to Comment on this Post

Tomato and Tortellini Soup


2 tbs. olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup diced green pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. dried basil leaves, crushed
2 tsp. dried oregano leaves, crushed
¼ tsp. pepper
3 ½ cups (28 oz. can) tomatoes and juice
3 ½ cups (two 14 ½ oz. cans) chicken broth
1 cup (8 oz. can) tomato sauce
1 cup water
1 cup sliced carrots
3 tbs. minced fresh parsley
1 package (9 oz.) fresh cheese tortellini
1 cup sliced zucchini
½ cup grated parmesan cheese

In 4-quart saucepan with cover, heat oil. Saute onion, green pepper, garlic, basil, oregano, and pepper for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in tomatoes and juice, broth, tomato sauce, water, carrots and parsley. Cover; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Mix in tortellini and zucchini, continue cooking for 4-6 minutes or until tortellini is tender. Stir in parmesan cheese before serving.

Notes: I’ve been making this for over 20 years having found the recipe when I was in college. It’s best when made with canned tomatoes and thinly sliced vegetables.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Use Facebook to Comment on this Post

Olive Oil Baked Shrimp


  • 2 lbs fresh large shrimp, peeled and deveined (tail on)
  • 3 tbsp. chopped garlic
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. red pepper flakes
  • 3 tbsp. chopped parsley
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh tomatoes
  • ¼ cup white cooking wine


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • Combine all ingredients in an oven-safe saute’ pan
  • Bake for 10 minutes

Notes:  The red pepper flakes makes this pretty spicy. Personally I would scale back the amount. I took the tails of shrimp.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Use Facebook to Comment on this Post

Chicken Scallopini Recipe


Great chicken dish with lemon sauce and artichokes. Compares to favorably to an item from Macaroni Grill.


Servings:  4

Lemon Butter Sauce

4 ounces lemon juice
2 ounces white wine
4 ounces heavy cream
1 lb butter (4 sticks)

Chicken and Pasta

6 -8 chicken breasts (3-ounces each)
oil , for sauteing chicken
butter , for sauteing chicken
2 ¾ cups flour , seasoned with salt and pepper, for dredging
6 ounces pancetta , cooked
12 ounces mushrooms , sliced
12 ounces artichoke hearts , sliced
1 tablespoon capers
1 lb cappellini pasta , cooked
chopped parsley , for garnish



  1. Heat the lemon juice and white wine in a saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Bring to a boil and reduce by one-third.
  3. Add cream and simmer until mixture thickens (3 to 4 minutes).
  4. Slowly add butter until completely incorporated.
  5. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Remove from heat and keep warm.

Chicken and pasta

  1. Heat a small amount of oil and two tablespoons butter in a large skillet.
  2. Dredge chicken in flour and saute in pan, turning once, until brown and cooked through.
  3. Remove chicken from pan.
  4. Add remaining ingredients to pan.
  5. Cover and heat until mushrooms soften and are cooked.
  6. Add chicken back to pan and let simmer for 5 minutes.
  7. Cook pasta and drain. * see notes

To serve

  1. Place cooked pasta on each plate.
  2. Add half of butter sauce to chicken mixture and toss.
  3. Taste and adjust. Add more sauce if needed.
  4. Place chicken mixture over pasta.
  5. Add a little more sauce to each.
  6. Garnish with parsley.

Orginally from Food.com


  1. I’ve broken the directions into sections to make it easier to follow.
  2. This recipe makes a lot of food. Consider halving the recipe.
  3. I substituted center cut bacon for pancetta. I cooked it and then cut it into 1 inch pieces.
  4. The recipe call for a lot of mushrooms. I used about 2/3 of what it called for.
  5. I used Riesling when the recipe called for white wine.
  6. That’s a lot of butter (!) I’ll scale it back a little next time. (try 3, 3 not enough)
  7. Originally the recipe called for the pasta to cooked earlier. But it stuck together while waiting to be served. It didn’t impact the taste but the presentation wasn’t as nice as it should have been. So I’ve moved it to later. Your pasta may vary.
  8. I used chicken tenders (not the breaded kind) but smaller pieces of chicken breast. If you decide to use full size chicken breasts, I’d recommend flattening them beforehand.
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Use Facebook to Comment on this Post