Wine Enthusiast Top 100 Best Restaurant

July 11 2013, Wine Enthusiast Top 100 Best Restaurant party to celebrate and try different cocktails and wines at the new NoMad. Some of them were just a tad too sweet for my taste buds and others I couldn’t get enough. However, it was exciting to meet some of the winners for the Wine Enthusiast Top 100 Best Restaurant Issue Celebration. It truly was a wonderful evening - from the beautiful setting to the great wines, cocktails, food and music - what a great showcase and toast to today’s food and wine culture with the finest leaders in the restaurant industry. This year’s list of 100 includes thirty new winners, along with exclusive chef’s recipes, ingenious wine-pairing ideas for the home chef, editorial on important food trends in 2013 and an enticing selection of restaurant dishes diners will not want to miss. Check out the list here:

Here is a recipe to share…..they had more than wine.
DEWAR’S Honeysuckle Sour
1.5 oz. DEWAR’S Highlander Honey
.5 oz. Cointreau
.5 oz. fresh lemon
.5 oz. fresh orange juice
1 bar spoon simple syrup

Method: Shake DEWAR’S Highlander Honey with fresh lemon, fresh orange juice and one bar spoons of simple syrup.

White Mushrooms and Grilled Ramps on Toast

Guest recipe by Alexandra Guarnaschelli,
Exec. Chef: Butter Restaurant
Watch her interview on The Woman's Connection YouTube Vlog
6-8 servings

4 tbsp. Extra-Virgin olive oil
1 small yellow onion, peeled and finely diced
2 small cloves garlic, peeled and minced
2 sprigs fresh thyme
¾ pound white mushrooms, stemmed, washed, dried and thinly sliced
12-18 fresh Ramps, washed and trimmed
1 tbsp. Balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp. dry Marsala
½ cup sour cream
The zest from ½ lemon
1 tbsp. chopped (fresh) parsley
1 tbsp. chopped (fresh) tarragon

Kosher salt and freshly-ground white pepper to taste

Note: this recipe can be served with roasted meats or a piece of fish. In this case, it will be served on little pieces of Rosemary toast.

1. Heat a large saucepan over medium heat. Add 2 tbsp of the olive oil and the diced onion. Season with salt and pepper and cook until tender, 3-5 minutes. Add the minced garlic and lower the heat. Add the thyme and the mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until the mushrooms are tender and a lot of the liquid has evaporated at the bottom of the pan, 8-10 minutes. Remove and discard the sprigs of thyme.
2. Heat a large sauté pan until it smokes slightly. Coat the ramps with the remaining olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Add the ramps to the hot pan and "char" them slightly. Turn the heat off and allow them to cook an additional minute or two until they become tender. Remove from the heat and drizzle with Balsamic vinegar. Turn them onto a flat surface and cut into bite-size pieces.
3. Add the Marsala to the mushrooms and cook until the flavor of the alcohol has mellowed considerably, 5-8 minutes. Add the sour cream and allow it to melt over the mushrooms. Check the seasoning. Add the lemon zest, parsley and tarragon. Taste for seasoning. Bring to a simmer and serve on toast immediately. Top each with the ramps.

Suggestions: This would be delicious with a Gruner Veltliner - Veltlinsky for example. . I love the acidic bite and the slightly carbonated character of this wine. It would nicely compliment the earthy mushrooms and cut through the creamy flavors as well. If in the mood for red, I would love to see this seasonal nibble with something as noble and exciting as Vega Sicilia Valbuena 2000. Wow!

White Chocolate Raspberry Swirl Ice Cream

Guest recipe by Anne Walker, Dabney Gough and Kris Hoogerhyde
Authors of Sweet Cream and Sugar Cones: 90 Recipes for Making Your Own Ice Cream and Frozen Treats from Bi-Rite Creamery

Makes about 1 quart

5 large egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
5 ounces white chocolate, finely chopped (11/4 cups)
2 cups heavy cream
3/4 cup whole milk
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup Raspberry Swirl Sauce (page 142)
Make the base
1. In a medium heatproof bowl, whisk the yolks just to break them up, then whisk in half of the sugar (2 tablespoons). Set aside. Put the chopped chocolate in another medium heatproof bowl and set that aside as well.
2. In a heavy nonreactive saucepan, stir together the cream, milk, salt, and the remaining sugar (2 tablespoons) and put the pan over medium-high heat. When the mixture approaches a bare simmer, reduce the heat to medium.
3. Carefully scoop out about 1⁄2 cup of the hot cream mixture and, whisking the eggs constantly, add the cream to the bowl with the egg yolks. Repeat, adding another 1⁄2 cup of the hot cream to the bowl with the yolks. Using a heatproof rubber spatula, stir the cream in the saucepan as you slowly pour the egg-and-cream mixture from the bowl into the pan.
4. Cook the mixture carefully over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it is thickened, coats the back of a spatula, and holds a clear path when you run your finger across the spatula, 1 to 2 minutes longer. 
5. Strain the base through a fine-mesh strainer into the bowl with the white chocolate and whisk to combine. Set the container into an ice-water bath, wash your spatula, and use it to stir the base occasionally until it is cool. Remove the container from the ice-water bath, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate the base for at least 2 hours or overnight.
Freeze the ice cream
6. Whisk the vanilla into the chilled base.
7. Freeze in your ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. While the ice cream is churning, put the container you’ll use to store the ice cream into the freezer. 
8. As you transfer the ice cream to the storage container, drizzle in some raspberry purée after every few spoonfuls. When all the ice cream is in the container, use a chopstick or butter knife to gently swirl the mixture. Enjoy right away or, for a firmer ice cream, freeze for at least 4 hours.

Raspberry Swirl Sauce
Makes about 1/2 cup | Pictured on page 140

2 half-pint baskets raspberries (2 cups), preferably organic
1/3 cup sugar
1. Combine the raspberries and sugar in a small nonreactive saucepan and put the pan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until most of the liquid has evaporated and the mixture has a jammy consistency, about 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium as the mixture thickens to prevent scorching.
2. Remove from the heat and let cool for a minute. Transfer to a blender and purée until smooth, being careful to avoid hot splatters. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl, pressing on the solids to extract as much purée as possible. 
If using as a topping, serve warm or at room temperature; chill well before swirling into ice cream. 
“Reprinted with permission from Sweet Cream & Sugar Cones by Kris Hoogerhyde, Anne Walker, and Dabney Gough, copyright © 2012.  

Triple BrowniesTriple Brownies

Guest recipe by Wonka Exceptionals

Talk about decadent!   (Makes 36 servings) 
These decadent brownies are a “must try” for chocolate lovers, whether you prefer the dark, milk or white variety. 
Aluminum foil Nonstick cooking spray
1 pkg (18.5 oz) Chocolate brownie mix
1 (3.5 oz) WONKA Exceptionals Scrumdiddlyumptious Chocolate Bar
1 (3.5 oz) WONKA Exceptionals Domed Dark Chocolate Bar
1 (3.5 oz) WONKA Exceptionals Chocolate Waterfall Bar

PREHEAT oven according to brownie mix package directions. Line 9-inch-square baking pan with foil (this makes for easy brownie removal); spray lightly with nonstick cooking spray. 
PREPARE brownie mix according to package directions. Spoon half of batter into prepared pan; place chocolate bars in a single layer over batter. Spoon remaining batter over candy bars, gently smoothing down top. 

BAKE according to package directions for 9-inch pan. Cool completely in pan on wire rack. To serve, lift foil from pan and peel away foil from brownies. Cut the square into 6 equal strips; cut strips in opposite direction, making 36 bars. 

Tomato Salad

Guest recipe by Viktorija Todorovska
Author of The Puglian Cookbook: Bringing the Flavors of Puglia Home

This simple tomato salad can also be used to make bruschetta. Although not exclusive to Puglia, it is often served on toasted bread as a starter, as it highlights the quality and
sweetness of ripe Puglian tomatoes. Try it with the Orecchiette with Broccoli or Spaghetti with Zucchini
yield: 8 servings

1 pound (454 g) ripe tomatoes, chopped
½ red onion, peeled and finely chopped
1½ teaspoons (7.5 ml) sea salt
3 tablespoons (45 ml) extra virgin olive oil
1½ tablespoons (22.5 ml) red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon (15 ml) chopped basil

1. In a large bowl, combine the tomatoes and onion. Season with the salt, olive oil, and vinegar. 
2. Serve sprinkled with the basil. 
Reprinted with permission Agate Surrey, 2011


Guest recipe by Judith Fertig and Karen Adler
Authors of Fish & Shellfish, Grilled & Smoked: 300 Foolproof Recipes for Everything from Amberjack to Whitefish, Plus Really Good Rubs, Marvelous Marinades, Sassy Sauces, and Sumptuous Sides
Watch her interview on The Woman's Connection YouTube Vlog

For this recipe, choose a firm-fleshed fish such as U.S. farm-raised catfish. 
Serve this with Texas pecan or the more fragrant jasmine rice.

Serves 4
1 pound U.S. farm-raised catfish fillets, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/2 cup green onions, trimmed and cut into 1-inch lengths on the bias
1 cup chopped Napa cabbage
Toasted sesame seeds to garnish
For the Lemongrass Marinade:
1 tablespoon thinly sliced fresh lemongrass (available at Asian markets)
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon nam pla or bottled fish sauce, (available in the Asian section of grocery stores)
1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon peanut or other vegetable oil
1/2 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
Salt and freshly ground white pepper

1. Place the fish, onions, and cabbage in a large seal able plastic bag. In a medium bowl, mix the Lemongrass Marinade ingredients together and pour over the fish mixture in the plastic bag. Seal, then toss to coat the fish and vegetables with the marinade. Let marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
2. Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal, gas, or wood pellet grill. Spray a grill wok with cooking spray and place over the sink or outside on the grass. Pour the marinated fish and vegetables into the wok, allowing the excess marinade to drain away. Place the wok on the grill. Using wooden paddles or grill spatulas, turn and toss the fish and vegetables until the
fish is opaque and the vegetables have lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Serve over rice, garnished with toasted sesame seeds.


Guest recipe by Judith Fertig an Karen Adler
Authors of Fish & Shellfish, Grilled & Smoked: 300 Foolproof Recipes for Everything from Amberjack to Whitefish, Plus Really Good Rubs, Marvelous Marinades, Sassy Sauces, and Sumptuous Sides
Watch her interview on The Woman's Connection YouTube Vlog

1. Select only the freshest fish and shellfish. Fresh fish has a glistening, dewy look, a sweet or briny smell of the sea, and a somewhat firm texture. Shellfish has a sweet or briny smell of the sea, too. Ask to smell the fish or shellfish before you buy. Even the slightest odor of ammonia means the fish is not the freshest. You can also judge freshness by texture-if you
press the center part of a fillet or steak with your finger and the impression stays, the fish is not fresh. If you're buying a whole fish, look at the eyes-if clear and bright, the fish is fresh; if opaque or cloudy, the fish is not fresh. If you buy flash-frozen fish or shellfish, make sure it
still frozen when you buy it. You'll have the best luck if you buy your fish from a reputable and knowledgeable fishmonger-he or she can help you select the best options.

2. Handle fish and shellfish carefully. Always keep fish and shellfish chilled before grilling. Rinse thoroughly under cold running water, then pat dry. Discard any oysters, clams, or mussels with cracked or open shells.

3. Marinate fish and shellfish for only 30 to 60 minutes in the refrigerator before grilling. Marinating longer could mean an overpowering flavor of the marinade instead of the delicate flavor of fish. The vinegar or citrus juice in the marinade could also "cook" the fish and you'll end up with ceviche. However, there are some types of firmer-textured or oily, full-flavored fish
and shellfish-such as bluefish, mackerel, marlin, monkfish, octopus, shark, tuna, or squid-that can take a longer marinade.

4. For grilling, it is preferable to leave the fish skin on. Always place a fillet flesh side down first, then turn halfway through grilling onto the skin side. This technique helps the fish fillet hold together better during grilling.

5. Grill just about any fish or shellfish you like. Very thin and delicate fish such as Dover sole or lake perch are better sauteed or broiled. Catfish fillets are great on the grill because they hold together well and taste great.

6. Grill over a hot fire. Hold your hand 5 inches above the heat source. If you can only leave your hand there for 2 seconds, your fire is hot.

7. The general rule for grilling fish is 10 minutes per inch of thickness. For a fillet or steak that is 1 inch in the thickest part, you grill flesh side down for 5 minutes, then turn and finish grilling for 5 minutes on the skin side. For shellfish, grill for about 2 to 3 minutes on each side or until the shellfish becomes more opaque and firm in texture.

8. Test for doneness by making sure the fish and shellfish are opaque and somewhat firm. Most fish are done when steaks or fillets begin to flake-not a dry flake, but more a moist separation and you see a clear liquid-when tested with a fork in the thickest part. For firmer-fleshed varieties such as farm-raised catfish, monkfish, sturgeon, walleye pike, or eel, the fish flesh should be all one color, when tested in the thickest part, and the texture
firm. If you prefer your salmon or tuna on the medium-rare side, look for opaque pink or grayish brown on the outside, glistening reddish pink or dark purple-red on the inside, just as you would judge the doneness a beef steak. Shellfish are done when they turn more opaque and firm up in texture. Underdone fish or shellfish can always be put back on the grill or zapped in the microwave for a few seconds. Overcooked fish or shellfish can't be rescued.

9. Grill gadgets that rule: two long-handled wide metal spatulas for fish steaks or fillets and long-handled tongs for shellfish. For delicate fish like flounder or skate wings and very small shellfish like clams or baby squid, use a perforated grill rack, disposable aluminum pans, Nordic ware fish boat, or aluminum foil as a base so that the fish won't fall through the
grill grates. Although your fish or shellfish won't have grill marks, it will still have the flavor of the grill-and be a lot easier to remove. Perforated grill woks allow you to stir-grill marinated fish and vegetables together. 

10. Because you never know what fish or shellfish will be the freshest when you shop, be ready to substitute. You'll want to match the same firm, moderate, or delicate texture and mild, moderate, or full flavor of the fish or shellfish you originally planned on. For example, if cod is unavailable or not very fresh, substitute U.S. farm-raised hake, hoki, whiting, or
turbot-similar matches in delicate texture and mild flavor. In place of moderate-textured and mild-flavored red snapper, try catfish, grouper, haddock, orange roughy, walleye, or whitefish. In place of firm-textured, mild-flavored shrimp, substitute lobster, prawns, soft shell crab, or even halibut or monk fish.

The Sneaky Chef Pizza

Missy Chase Lapine
Author of The Sneaky Chef: Simple Strategies for Hiding Healthy Foods in Kids' Favorite Meals

The following make-ahead is an Orange Puree that blends excellently in pizza (and pasta) sauce, to bring a big nutritional boost to meals that usually aren't thought of as health foods.

1 medium sweet potato or yam, peeled and rough chopped
3 med-to-large carrots, peeled and sliced into thick chunks
2-3 tablespoons water

In medium pot, cover carrots and potatoes with cold water. Boil 20 minutes until tender. (Thoroughly cook carrots or they'll leave telltale nuggets -- a gigantic no-no for the Sneaky Chef). Drain vegetables. Puree on high in food processor with two tablespoons water, until completely smooth. Use rest of water to make a smooth puree. 
Makes about 2 cups of puree. Store in refrigerator up to 3 days, or freeze 1/4 cup portions in plastic containers.

My kids have never noticed that I'm sneaking carrots and yams into their sauce! I mix the healthy puree right into the bottled tomato sauce, then I let the kids add the toppings. You can even prepare this pizza ahead of time without cooking it, and then refrigerate for a day or two. Simply bake when you're ready to eat. 

Makes 1 large pizza or 4 smaller pizzas:
1 store-bought pizza dough or 4 " Greek style" pocketless pitas (whole wheat preferred)
¾ cup store-bought tomato sauce
¼ cup Orange Puree (see recipe above)
1 to 2 cups low-fat shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and preheat a pizza stone or spray a baking sheet with oil.
Stretch pizza dough, or roll out with floured rolling pin on floured surface, to form a pie. Transfer to stone or baking sheet. If using pocketless pitas, place them on the prepared baking sheet. Combine tomato sauce with Orange Puree. Mix well. Spread 1/2 to 1 cup of the sauce mixture across the large pizza dough (1/4 cup for each pita), then top with 1 cup of mozzarella (1/2 cup per pita). Cover and refrigerate at this point, or bake for 15 to 20 minutes until bubbly and lightly browned. Allow to cool a few minutes, then cut into triangles and serve.
© Missy Chase Lapine, all rights reserved.

Tenderloin Steaks with port and mustard sauce/Filetes de solomillo con salsa de oporto y mostaza

Guest recipe by Simone & Ines Ortega
Authors of 1080 Recipes

Serves 6.

· 6 tenderloin steaks, about 5 ounces each
· 4 tablespoons olive oil
· ½ teaspoon mustard
· 5 tablespoons port
· Salt

Brush both sides of the steaks with a little of the oil and let stand in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Heat the remaining oil in a skillet. Season the steaks with salt, add to the skillet, and cook over high heat for 2-4 minutes on each side, until done to your liking. Transfer to a serving dish and keep warm. Stir the mustard and port into the skillet and cook for 2-3 minutes. Pour the sauce over the steaks and serve immediately.

Tamarind-Glaze Flank Steak with Mango-jicama Salsa

Guest recipe by Hope Fox & Chef Kunz
Author of Impress for Less! (finally...terrific recipes from the finest restaurants that you can really make at home) 

Legendary chef Gray Kunz took New York by storm when he opened Café Gray in 2004, a 200-seat brasserie designed by David Rockwell in the Time Warner Center. With its leafy Central Park views and high-profile address, Café Gray is the perfect showcase for Kunz’s synthesized cuisine, a product of his international upbringing and stints in the illustrious kitchen of Fredy Girardet in Lausanne, Switzerland, and the Regent Hotel in Hong Kong. New York magazine described Kunz’s cuisine as “not so much fusion as the product of a man fluent in the food languages of Europe, India, China, and Southeast Asia.” After all, this is the same chef who earned a four-star rating from the New York Times while at Lespinasse, which Zagat rated as New York’s Best Overall Restaurant for three years in a row. In 2003 the Culinary Institute of America heralded him as a Master of Aesthetics, an award given to only a handful of culinary professionals.

Chef Kunz creates layered dishes composed of intriguing ingredients that add up to a single, bold statement. A few cases in point are his bouquet of pencil asparagus with fresh peas, mint, and yogurt; black bass with ancho chiles, coriander, and mussel-clam broth; or coconut-coated red snapper with crabmeat and green papaya. Ask for a seat in the showcase kitchen, where the chefs dance the well-choreographed waltz of impeccable gastronomy.
Chef Kunz uses concentrated tamarind paste to give an exotic jolt to the barbecue glaze for this steak.

Tamarind Glaze

1 cup tamarind paste (or 1 cup pureed mango)
2 plum tomatoes, roughly chopped (or 1 cup canned diced tomatoes)
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh ginger
1/2 cup honey
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 cup water
Coarse salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1/2 cup peeled jícama, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 mango, peeled, pitted, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
Cayenne, to taste
Coarse salt, to taste
Freshly ground white pepper, to taste

Flank Steak
11/2 pounds flank steak
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
Cayenne, to taste
Coarse salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro leaves

Serves 6

1. To make the tamarind glaze, in a medium saucepan, combine the tamarind paste, tomatoes, ginger, honey, cumin, coriander, and water. Place over low heat and simmer, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes.
2. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve, discard the solids, and return the sauce to the pan. Simmer again, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is syrupy, 5 to 7 minutes. Season with salt and set aside.
3. To make the salsa, in a large sauté pan over high heat, heat the oil. Add the bell pepper and jícama and cook, stirring occasionally, until warmed but still crisp, about 2 minutes. Add the mango and remove from the heat. Stir in the vinegar and sugar. Season to taste with cayenne, salt, and white pepper. Set aside.
4. To make the flank steak, brush the steak with the oil and season with cayenne, salt, and black pepper. Preheat an outdoor grill or heat a grill pan over high heat. Grill the steak, turning once, until it reaches the desired doneness, 6 to 8 minutes for medium rare.
5. Let the steak rest 5 minutes, then slice into thin slices on the bias. Coat the steak with the tamarind glaze, garnish with the salsa and chopped cilantro, and serve.

chef’s notes:
Tamarind paste is made from the pods of the feathery tamarind tree native to Latin America and the Caribbean. The pulp of these pods is mixed with water, and the resulting liquid is used as a souring agent in beverages, curries, soups, and other dishes. Tamarind is a very common ingredient in Thai and Indian cuisines. It is available in Asian markets and in some large supermarkets.
Jícama is a large, bulbous root vegetable that is popular in Mexican and other Latino cuisines.

Tangerine-Marinated Olives/Aceitunas Aliñadas con Mandarina

Guest recipe by Anya von Bremzen
Author of The New Spanish Table

2 cups mixed cracked green olives
6 small garlic cloves, crushed with a garlic press
2 tablespoons grated tangerine zest
1/2 cup fresh tangerine juice
4 thin lemon slices, cut in half and seeded
3 to 4 tablespoons sherry vinegar, preferably aged
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 small bay leaves
1/2 small dried chile, such as arbol, crumbled, or more to taste
1 medium-size pinch of ground cumin

Place the olives, garlic, tangerine zest and juice, lemon, vinegar, olive oil, bay leaves, chile, and cumin in a large glass jar or bowl and stir to mix well. Cover the jar and let the olives marinate overnight at room temperature, tossing occasionally. For a richer flavor, let the olives marinate for up to a week in the refrigerator. Makes about 2 cups

Sangria Scorcher

Guest recipe by Kara Newman
Author of Spice & Ice 

This sangria may look delicate, but don’t be fooled by its appearance: it packs a good dose of heat. One of our drink testers referred to it as “a pink pit bull.” 
Recipe makes two (2) cocktails:
1 Red chili pepper, sliced
2 ½ oz White wine
1 oz Vodka (infused with hot peppers, if desired)
1 oz Triple Sec
½ oz Fresh lime juice
1/3 oz Elderflower liqueur
½ oz Cranberry juice
1 Tbl Cucumber, diced
Lemon-lime soda
In a tall glass, muddle the chili pepper. Add a scoop of ice, and stir in the remaining ingredients. Top up the glass with lemon-lime soda. 

Roasted Squash Soup

Guest recipe by Alexandra Guarnaschelli,
Exec. Chef: Butter Restaurant
Watch her interview on The Woman's Connection YouTube Vlog

Serves 4-6

4 pounds mixed Winter squash (from Hubbard to Butternut varieties), washed
4 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 tbsp. dark brown sugar
3 tbsp. Molasses
Kosher salt to taste
Freshly ground white pepper to taste
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 knob fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
ź tsp. ground cloves
2 cups water
2 cups heavy cream
3 cups skim milk
The zest from 1 orange
2 tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce
1 tbsp, garlic oil
Equipment: Blender or food processor

1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
2. Place the squash on a flat surface and split them in half lengthwise. Scrape out the seeds and arrange in a single layer on 1 or 2 baking sheets.
3. In a small saucepan, melt the butter completely over medium heat. Wait until it starts to turn a light brown color. Remove from the heat and immediately distribute the butter into the cavities of the squash halves. Sprinkle with the brown sugar and Molasses as well.
4. Season the insides with salt and pepper. Finish by covering with the ground (dry) ginger, fresh ginger and the ground cloves. Fill the bottom of the tray(s) with the water (should be about 1 inch high) to create steam while the squash bakes in the oven. Cover the tray(s) with aluminum foil and seal the edges tightly.
5. Place the tray(s) in the center of the oven and bake, undisturbed, for 2 hours. To check for doneness, pierce one of the halves with the tip of a small knife. The knife should slide in and out easily. If at all firm, bake the halves and addition 30-45 minutes. Remove from the oven. Carefully peel back the foil. Set aside to cool.
6. In a medium pot, combine the cream and milk. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer. Using a large spoon, scoop the flesh from the squash taking care not to take any skin with it. The skin can give a bitter taste to the soup. Add the flesh directly to the cream mixture and stir to blend. Turn the heat on low. Add some of the orange zest, the Worcestershire Sauce and the garlic oil. Stir to blend. Taste for seasoning. If the soup lacks sweetness, add a little Molasses. If it lacks salt, add a little salt or Worcestershire Sauce.
7. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

Renaissance Garden

Guest recipe by Francine Segan
Author of Shakespeare's Kitchen: Renaissance Recipes for the Contemporary Cook

In Shakespeare's time salad was served tossed with dried fruit and nuts, making it especially sweet and healthful. The garnishes back then were interesting. Tall rosemary branches decorated with fresh cherry pairs were anchored in half lemons. It makes an ordinary salad very festive and makes any meal a special occasion. This salad is definitely one way to get your kids to eat their greens. Serves 6

1/4 cup fruit vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons light brown sugar
Salt and freshly milled black pepper
6 cups assorted fresh herbs and baby lettuces (such as parsley, mint, endive, spinach, mesclun mix, tarragon, or marjoram)
1/4 cup capers, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup blanched, slivered almonds
1/4 cup currants
8 dates, quartered lengthwise
6 dried figs, thinly sliced
4 long, sturdy fresh rosemary branches, optional
2 large lemons, halved, optional
12 fresh or candied whole cherries, optional
2 large lemons, thinly sliced, optional
1/4 cup candied fruit peels, optional

Whisk together the verjus, oil, and brown sugar in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. 
Combine the herbs and lettuces, capers, raisins, almonds, currants, dates, and figs in a large bowl. Add the vinaigrette and toss until well coated.
If you are recreating the original salad presentation, press one rosemary branch into the rounded end of each lemon half. Using the stem, a wire, or ribbon, attach 3 cherries to each rosemary branch.
Invert a small bowl, dinner-roll or handful of croutons in the center of a very large serving platter for additional height. Arrange the salad mix over and around the bowl. Place the rosemary branches on the four sides of the platter and arrange the lemon slices and Candied Citrus Peel around the platter. 
For an even more elaborate traditional Elizabethan garnish, alternate lemon slices topped with capers with quartered hard-boiled eggs, candied orange peel, and egg "porcupines" made by inserting almond and date slivers into hard-boiled egg halves.

Pumpkin Spice Doughnuts

Guest recipe by DeDe Wilson
Author of A Baker's Field Guide to Doughnuts: More than 60 Warm and Fresh Homemade Treats

Description: This cake-style doughnut is gently spiced to allow the pumpkin flavor to shine through. It pairs well with simple glazes and dry toppings.

Field Notes: Use canned pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling, which is sweetened and spiced. Feel free to mix and match toppings with this recipe, such as Spiced Orange Glaze or a simple Cinnamon-Sugar Topping.

Lifespan: These are best eaten as soon as possible.

Yield: about sixteen 3-inch doughnuts

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sifted cake flour
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup full-fat sour cream, at room temperature
2 tablespoons flavorless vegetable oil, such as canola, plus more for deep-frying

Glaze(s) or topping(s) of your choice
Whisk together both flours, the baking powder, cinnamon, salt, baking soda, ginger, and nutmeg in a medium-size bowl to aerate and combine.

In a large bowl, beat together the pumpkin puree, eggs, and both sugars with an electric mixer until creamy, or whisk well by hand. Beat in the sour cream and 2 tablespoons oil until combined. Add the dry mixture in two batches and stir with a wooden spoon just until the dough comes together. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to overnight.

Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Line a rimmed baking sheet pan with a triple layer of paper towels. Heat 3 inches of oil in a deep pot or deep-fat fryer to 350° to 355°F.

While the oil is heating, dust the work surface with flour. Scrape the dough onto the surface, dust the top of the dough lightly with flour, and roll out to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut out doughnuts with a lightly floured 3-inch round cutter. Gently gather the scraps, press them together, roll out the dough, and cut out as many additional doughnuts as possible.
Fry a few doughnuts at a time; do not crowd. Fry until light golden brown, about 1 1/2 minutes, flip them over, and fry for about 1 1/2 minutes more, until light golden brown on the other side as well. Using a slotted spoon, remove each doughnut from the oil and drain thoroughly on paper towels. Repeat with the remaining dough.
While the doughnuts are still slightly warm, apply dry topping(s) or glaze(s) as desired.

Pumpkin-Ginger Pancakes

Guest recipe by Ellen Easton
Courtesy of Nielsen-Massey Vanillias

2 TBS. butter, melted
1 large egg
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup milk, room temperature
2 TBS. Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract
1/4 cup Walnuts, natural, crushed to tiny pieces
1/8 cup Ginger People crystallized ginger, crushed to dust size pieces
2 TBS. ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups King Arthur Pumpkin Pancake Mix

Melt butter over a low heat. In a medium size mixing bowl, add next eight ingredients. On a medium speed, slowly add pumpkin mix, blending together until combined. It is OK if batter is a bit lumpy.

On a preheated hot skillet, place 1/4 cup of batter for regular size pancakes or one heaping tablespoon for mini pancakes, allowing room in-between each. When small bubbles appear on the top, flip over for 30 seconds or until cooked through. Remove and serve with slices of fresh pear and maple syrup.
Garnish: fresh sliced pears and maple syrup

Country Lentil Soup

Guest recipe by Lynn Dowling
Author of Healing Fatty Liver Disease: A Complete Health and Diet Guide, Including 100 Recipes

Tips: Adding the chopped mushroom stems improves the texture of the cheese mixture.
The cheese mixture also makes a great veggie dip.

• Preheat barbecue grill to medium
• Food processor

4 large portobello mushrooms 4
2 tsp olive oil 10 mL
2 cloves garlic, minced 2
2 cups tightly packed fresh spinach leaves 500 mL
2 tbsp chopped fresh basil 30 mL
1 cup 2% cottage cheese 250 mL
1⁄4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese 60 mL
4 4-inch (10 cm) whole wheat pitas, split open 4
Roasted red pepper slices (optional)

1. Wipe mushroom caps with a damp paper towel and gently twist off stems. Coarsely chop stems and set aside. Using the edge of a spoon, gently scrape off and discard the dark gills from the caps.
2. Brush both sides of mushroom caps with oil and place on preheated grill. Grill, turning once, for 2 to 3 minutes per side or until lightly browned on both sides. Set aside.
3. In food processor, combine mushroom stems, garlic, spinach, basil, cottage cheese and Parmesan; process until uniformly smooth but not puréed.
4. Place 1 grilled mushroom cap, rounded side down, on a pita half and fill with one-quarter of the cheese mixture. Top with the other pita half. Garnish with roasted peppers (if using).

Makes 4 servings

Calories 278
Fat 7 g
Carbohydrate 39 g
Fiber 6 g
Protein 19 g
© 2013

Pizza With Greens

Guest recipe by Viktorija Todorovska
Author of The Puglian Cookbook: Bringing the Flavors of Puglia Home

As made in Puglia, this simple and delicious appetizer features the slightly bitter chicory
ubiquitous in the region. Dandelion greens, a close relative of chicory, are much easier
to find in the United States and approximate the flavor of chicory. The simplicity of the dish
belies its flavor. The pine nuts add a depth of flavor that allows this dish to pair well
with medium-bodied wines such as Primitivo and Negroamaro.

yield: 8 servings
1 package (about 1½ pounds [680 g]) pizza dough (at room temperature), divided in half*
2 bunches dandelion greens, washed and cut into bite-sized pieces
3 tablespoons (45 ml) extra virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing the dough
2 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons (30 ml) pine nuts, lightly toasted

1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Thoroughly oil a baking sheet.
2. Roll out each half of the pizza dough into a round about ¼ inch (0.5 cm) thick. 
3. Boil the dandelion greens in salted water for 3 minutes, until they begin to soften. 
Drain. While the greens boil, heat the olive oil and garlic over medium heat. Add the
drained greens and the pine nuts, toss, and cook for 3 more minutes. Set aside.
4. Place one round of dough on the oiled baking sheet. Spread the sautéed greens over
the dough, leaving a ½-inch (1-cm) border around the edge. Brush the border with water. 
Cover the greens with the other rolled-out round of pizza dough, making sure the two
circles of dough overlap. Go around the edges of the pizza and pinch the dough to seal
the layers together. 
5. Brush the top of the pizza generously with olive oil and bake for 20 minutes, or until
the top and bottom crusts start to brown. 
* You can buy refrigerated pizza dough at your neighborhood pizza place or at the grocery store. 
If you prefer, of course, you can always make your own.

Reprinted with permission from Agate Surrey, 2011


Guest recipe by Cameron Bogue, 
Beverage Manager Cafe Boulud, and Pleiades, in NYC

Inspiration was drawn from Latin culture where fresh picked fruit is dipped into salt and dried chili pepper. Combining these flavors with another Latin favorite, the Caipirinha, accentuated the caramelized flavor of grilled pineapple. 

1 ¼ oz Cachaça or aged rum
2 slices Grilled pineapple*
1 oz Fresh lime juice
½ oz Simple syrup
1 Tbl Sugar
1/8 tsp Salt
1/8 tsp Cayenne pepper

Muddle grilled pineapple, lime juice and simple syrup in bottom of a shaker. Add ice and Cachaça. Shake well and strain into an ice-filled rocks glass rimmed with sweet and spicy mixture. 

*Cut fresh pineapple, slice lengthwise and grill until the simple sugars are caramelized with beautiful grill marks. 

Pecan Caramel Cheesecake

Guest recipe by Sandra Lee
Author of Semi-Homemade The Complete Cookbook

Pecan pie or cheesecake? Try a bite of both with this no-bake New York-style cheesecake smothered in caramelized pecans. The inspired combination of creamy cheesecake, gooey caramel, and crunchy pecans is a two-in-one treat, perfect for parties, special dinners or starting a new Thanksgiving tradition. Be generous with the caramel -- and don't be afraid to let it drip down the sides. It just looks more homemade. 

Serves 12 to 16

2 boxes (11.1 ounces each) real cheesecake dessert mix, Jell-O No Bake® 
3/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons water
2 1/2 cups cold whole milk
1 cup butterscotch caramel sauce, Mrs. Richardson's ® 
1 cup pecans, toasted, chopped
1/2 cup golden brown sugar, packed

Prep time: 10 minutes
Chilling time: 5 hours


Line bottom of 9-inch-diameter spring form pan with parchment or wax paper. 
Mix 2 packages of crust, melted butter, sugar, and water in large bowl until well blended. Reserve 1 cup of crumb mixture for topping. 
Press remaining crumb mixture onto bottom of prepared pan (not up sides). 
Combine 2 packages of cheesecake filling and cold milk in another large bowl. 
Beat for 3 minutes, or until smooth and thick. 
Fold 1/2 cup of caramel sauce into cheesecake mixture. 
Pour mixture into crust-lined spring form pan. 
Mix reserved crumb mixture with 1/4 cup of caramel sauce, pecans, and brown sugar. 
Sprinkle atop cheesecake. 
Refrigerate cake at least 5 hours, or until set. 
Run warm knife around pan sides to loosen cake; remove pan sides. 
Transfer cake to serving platter and drizzle with remaining 1/4 cup of caramel sauce. 
Serve cold. 

Copyright © 2003 SLSH Enterprises