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Eggplant

Maggie Stopera

INGREDIENTS: 

  • 8 slices eggplant (1/2" thick, about 4" diameter)
  • 4 slices eggplant (1/2" thick, about 3" diameter)
  • - kosher salt and freshly ground Kowalski's Black Peppercorns
  • 1/2 cup Kowalski's Extra Virgin Olive Oil (approximately), divided
  • 4 slices red heirloom tomato (1/2" thick, about 4" diameter)
  • 4 slices yellow heirloom tomato (1/2" thick, about 3" diameter)
  • 4 slices green or multicolor heirloom tomato (1/2" thick, about 3" diameter)
  • 1 cup shredded cheese mixture (such as Parmesan, Asiago and fontina)
  • - balsamic reduction (such as Cucina Viva Classic Glaze)
  • - fresh basil leaves, for garnish

INSTRUCTIONS: 

Evenly sprinkle both sides of the eggplant with 2 tsp. salt; let stand 20 min. Wipe excess salt from eggplant and dry slices with a paper towel. Completely but lightly coat eggplant with oil. Season to taste with pepper. Grill directly over medium heat, covered, turning several times until browned and tender when pierced with a fork (6-10 min.). Meanwhile, arrange tomatoes in a single layer on a baking sheet; season with salt and pepper to taste. Top tomatoes evenly with cheese; drizzle very lightly with oil. Place under a preheated broiler until cheese browns and is melted and bubbly (about 2 min.). Drizzle serving plates with oil and balsamic glaze. Arrange 4 large eggplant slices on plates; top each with red tomato rounds. Add another layer of large eggplant, then yellow tomato; repeat with smallest eggplant slices and smallest tomatoes. Drizzle towers with oil and balsamic glaze; garnish with basil, salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

Note:

  • When assembling towers, use the largest slices on the bottom and use smaller slices as you stack up to prevent them from falling over.
  • Multicolored heirloom tomatoes are recommended for their visual appeal. You can substitute any color tomatoes.
  • You can substitute our recipe for Balsamic Syrup for the balsamic reduction.

Basic Corn Beef and Cabbage

Maggie Stopera

  • 3 lbs. corned beef brisket with spice packet
  • 5 lbs. red potatoes
  • 3 carrots, peeled and cut into 3 inch pieces
  • 1 large onion sliced
  • 1 small head green cabbage cut into small wedges
  • 1 small head purple cabbage

Directions

  1. Place corned beef in large pot or Dutch oven and cover with water. Add the spice packet that came with the corned beef. Cover pot and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer approximately 50 minutes per pound or until tender.
  2. Add whole potatoes and carrots, and cook until the vegetables are almost tender. Add cabbage and cook for 15 more minutes. Remove meat and let rest 15 minutes.
  3. Place vegetables in a bowl and cover. Add as much broth (cooking liquid reserved in the Dutch oven or large pot) as you want. Slice meat across the grain.

White Cheddar Cheese Béchamel Sauce

  • 3 Tbls.  Unsalted Butter
  • ¼ Cup Flour
  • 3 Cups Whole Milk
  • ¼ Tsp. Cayenne Pepper
  • ¼ Tsp. Ground Nutmeg
  • 1/2 Tsp. Dry mustard
  • 1-½ cups Shredded white cheddar cheese
  1. Melt butter in saucepan, add flour and cook about 1 minute, stirring.
  2. In another saucepan, heat milk to scalding.
  3. Gradually add the milk to the butter and flour mixture, bring to boil whisking constantly.
  4. Reduce heat to simmer.
  5. Add cayenne pepper, nutmeg, and dry mustard. Simmer about 5 minutes.
  6. Stir in shredded white cheddar cheese, until melted and smooth.
  7. Cover with plastic wrap to prevent skin from forming, let cool. Can be stored in zip lock bags and store in freezer, to be used for later use, or use immediately, spread on tart or pizza crust.

Rye Pizza Dough

Prep 20 m    Ready In 1 hour, 30 minutes 

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour 
  • 1 cup rye flour 
  • 1 teaspoon salt 
  • 1 1/2 cups water, divided 
  • 1 tsp. brown sugar 
  • 2 ½ tsps. Active dry yeast
  • 1 Tbls. Caraway seeds
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour for kneading dough, or as needed

Directions

  1. Mix 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1-cup rye flour, 1-cup wheat flour, and salt together in a bowl.
  2. Pour 1/2 cup water into a microwave-safe bowl; heat in microwave for 30 seconds. Stir brown sugar into water until dissolved; add yeast and stir. Let mixture stand until bubbling, about 10 minutes.
  3. Pour yeast mixture into flour mixture.
  4. Pour remaining 1 cup water into a microwave-safe bowl, add caraway seeds, and heat in microwave for 30 seconds. Stir olive oil into the warm water; pour over flour mixture. Knead flour mixture, adding more all-purpose flour if dough is sticky, until dough is smooth and holds together.
  5. Form dough into a ball and place in a bowl. Cover bowl with a damp towel and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  6. Punch dough down and transfer to a floured work surface. Roll or shape dough into desired shape.
  1. Mix 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1-cup rye flour, 1-cup wheat flour, and salt together in a bowl.
  2. Pour 1/2 cup water into a microwave-safe bowl; heat in microwave for 30 seconds. Stir brown sugar into water until dissolved; add yeast and stir. Let mixture stand until bubbling, about 10 minutes.
  3. Pour yeast mixture into flour mixture.
  4. Pour remaining 1 cup water into a microwave-safe bowl, add caraway seeds, and heat in microwave for 30 seconds. Stir olive oil into the warm water; pour over flour mixture. Knead flour mixture, adding more all-purpose flour if dough is sticky, until dough is smooth and holds together.
  5. Form dough into a ball and place in a bowl. Cover bowl with a damp towel and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
  6. Punch dough down and transfer to a floured work surface. Roll or shape dough into desired shape.

Curried Kale

Maggie Stopera

  • 1 - 1lb. Natures Greens, Kale or Mustard Greens*
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 medium onion-chopped

  • 1 15 oz. can kidney beans or Garbanzo Beans

  • 1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes

  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon curry

  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes

  • Bring stockpot of lightly salted water to boil. Place greens in pot, cover, and cook for 5-7 minutes. Drain and set aside.

In sauté pan, on medium high heat add olive oil and onions. Sauté for 3-5 minutes. Add greens, kidney beans, tomato sauce and spices. Stir and heat until greens mixture is heated through. I you like, just before serving dash with Sriracha Sauce. Serve hot.
*May blend with other greens such as turnip, kale or collard to equal 16 ounces.

Serves 4-6 

In a medium skillet, cook the butter over moderate heat, stirring, until golden brown and nutty smelling, about 5 minutes. Crack the eggs into the pan and cook until the whites are just set and the yolks are runny, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Slide the eggs on top of the Curried Kale and Beans, breaking up the eggs to distribute them evenly. Serve hot.

Fruitcake

Maggie Stopera

Ingredients

  • 6 oz. dried prunes, chopped 
  • 6 oz. dates, chopped 
  • 8 oz. dark raisins 
  • 6 oz. golden raisins 
  • 6 oz. currents 
  • ¾ cup butter 
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar 
  • ¾ cup molasses 
  • ½ cup coffee liqueur (or ½ cup strong black coffee) 
  • Zest and juice of 2 oranges 
  • 8 oz. glace cherries 
  • 8 oz. candied citrus peel 
  • 8 oz. toasted pecans, roughly chopped 
  • 2 tsp. allspice 
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon 
  • 2 tsp. powdered ginger 
  • 1 tsp. cloves 
  • 2 tsp. nutmeg 
  • 3 tbsp. cocoa 
  • 3 eggs 
  • 1 1/3 cups all purpose flour 
  • ½ cup ground hazelnuts or almonds 
  • ½ tsp. baking powder 
  • ½ tsp. baking soda

  Instructions

  1. In a large saucepan melt the butter over medium heat and add the raisins, dates, prunes, currents, brown sugar, molasses, spices, coffee liqueur (or coffee) and the orange zest and juice. 
  2. Bring to a gentle boil and very slowly simmer for 10 minutes. 
  3. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 30-45 minutes. 
  4. When cool stir in the beaten eggs. 
  5. Sift together, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda. 
  6. Add the ground nuts and fold through the boiled mixture. Fold in cherries, citrus peel and pecans. Pour into prepared baking pan. You can decorate the top with additional pecan halves, cherries etc., if you like. 
  7. Bake at 300 degrees F for 1 ½ to 2 hours depending upon the size of your pan. The cake should feel firm to the touch at the center and a wooden toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean. The cake should be cooled completely in the pan on a wire rack before removing. 
  8. At this point you can poke small holes in the top and bottom of the cake with a fork and pour on 4 ounces of dark rum or your favorite whiskey, half on the top, wait ten minutes, then flip it over and pour the remaining half on the bottom. 
  9. Soak several layers of cheesecloth in additional rum if you like and wrap completely around the cake, then cover with several layers of plastic wrap and store in a COOL place. 
  10. If you have decorated the top with fruit and nuts, brush with a simple glaze of equal parts water and sugar boiled together for about 10-15 minutes.
  11. You can also brush the cake with brandy or rum.