Saturday, March 15, 2008

Menu Week 5

Reflections from the backcounter:

Puppy Paradise: The Bergamasco puppies are thriving. After a harrowing week of touch and go , there are four happy, plump puppies and a healthy mother. Pictures have been promised but the human nursemaids are worn out after a week of tube feeding puppies and caring for a very sick mother dog. I can't wait to see these pups. It is spring here in the Southwest and we are enjoying great weather, prayers for those in storms especially, Atlanta.

Menu Week 5


Rosemary Citrus Chicken on the rotisserie
Twice Baked Potatoes

A perfect day to enjoy your family outside and use the grill to prepare the chicken. We live in the Southwest and the weather here is beautiful. This is a perfect meal to serve outside and enjoy the balmy breeze and sunshine. If you are in more inclement weather, this is a hearty meal that can be served inside and prepared in the oven. Make an extra chicken to serve later in the week.

Rosemary Citrus Chicken on the Rotisserie

1-2 whole chickens
1 cup softened butter
1T chopped fresh rosemary, ¼ t dried
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
½ t dried oregano
2 cloves minced garlic
3T fresh lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
2 lemons
2 oranges

Clean one to two chickens, rinse in cold water and and dry well with paper towels. Loosen skin above breast meat and insert herbed butter between the skin and the meat. This is easiest on the breasts but can be accomplished over the thigh meat with perserverance. Stuff cavity of chicken with lemon wedges, orange wedges and fresh rosemary. Skewer chicken on rotisserie and secure with spit forks. Use kitchen twine to tie the chicken wings together at the first joint from the tip around the back of the chicken. Loop a piece of twine around the tail and spit and tie tightly around the crossed legs. Cook over coals until done. The only way to be sure the chicken is cooked through is to use a thermometer. Insert the thermometer into the thigh, taking care not to touch the bone. Chicken should reach 165 degrees F (74 degrees C). Remember that the meat will continue to cook once it's removed from the heat source, so you may pull it out of the oven or off the grill a few degrees below the target temperature--just keep the thermometer in place and check to be sure the temperature climbs to a safe heat.

This chicken is also delicious baked into a 350 degree oven until done.

Twice baked potatoes
6 large russet potatoes
1 cup butter
1 cup sour cream
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup milk
Olive oil
Salt, Pepper Lowry’s salt

Wash and dry potatoes
Coat with olive oil and sprinkle with salt
Bake at 350 degrees until done

Allow potatoes to slightly cool, Cut in half and scoop out flesh into bowl. Mash potatoes and mix sour cream, butter, ½ of cheese and milk. Whip until smooth. Can use wisk or hand held mixer. Stuff potatoes with filling and top with remainder of cheese. Bake until heated through at 350 degrees and until cheese melts.

Steamed broccoli

Monday: Saint Patrick’s Day
Saint Patrick’s Day is one of my family’s favorite holidays. Unfortunately, my kids are not big corned beef fans but it is a once a year tradition! This year St. Patrick’s is falling on a Monday so crock pot corned beef seems like a great idea.

Corned Beef in the Crockpot
Red Potatoes and carrots

Corned Beef in the Crockpot

6 medium red potatoes, quartered
4 medium carrots cut into 2 inch chunks on the diagonal
1 medium yellow onion cut into 6 wedges
1 3-4 pound brisket with seasoning packet rinsed
3 cloves
½ teaspoon black peppercorns
2 teaspoons firmly packed brown sugar
1 12 ounce can beer, stron or mild
1 medium size head white ccabbage cut into 8 wedges (can secure with kitchen twine to keep from falling apart….too much trouble for me)
½ cup Dijon mustard for serving

Put the potatoes, carrots and onion in the slow cooker, Lay the corned beef on top of the vegetables and sprinkle with the seasonings from the packet, the cloves, peppercorns and brown sugar. Add the beer and enough water to just cover the brisket. Cover and cook on LOW for 9-11 hours. Take out corned beef and vegetables and place on serving platter, cover with foil to keep warm. Put cabbage into remaining liquid in crock pot and cook on high. Cover and cook until crisp-tender 20-30 minutes. Serve the beef sliced across the grain with the mustard and vegetables.


Curry chicken salad
Pita Bread

Curry chicken salad

2 cups diced cooked chicken
1 stalk celery, diced
4 green onions, chopped
1 Golden Delicious apple - peeled, cored and diced
1/3 cup golden raisins
1/3 cup seedless green grapes, halved
1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
3/4 cup light mayonnaise
Combine ingredients mix well and refrigerate. Serve on pita bread or croissants.

Baked Bowtie Pasta Chef Eddie Matney
Green Salad
Garlic Bread

Baked Bowtie Pasta
¾ cup sundried tomato paste
1 T garlic chopped
½ cup parsley chopped
3 cups cottage chesse
1 15 oz carton ricotta cheese
2 t salt
1 t red pepper flakes
2 lb bowtie pasta cooked and drained
1 cup shredded asiago cheese

Combine all ingredients except pasta and Asiago cheese in a bowl; mix well. Sir in pasta. Place in 13x9 inch baking pan, top with Asiago cheese. Bake at 300 degrees, 30 minuetes or until hot and bubbly. Serves 10

Sun dried tomato paste

20 sundried tomato pieces soaked in water to soften
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
3 cloves garlic
16 basil leaves
¼ cup tomato paste

Combine ingredients in blender, blend on high until smooth


Mock Manti
Salad and Pita Bread

Mock Manti This recipe is called Mock Manti because pasta shells are substituted for home made pastry. The traditional recipe calls for homemade pastry boats stuffed with the meat and onion mixture. Clearly, the traditional preparation is not an option in my busy household, so I opt for the Mock recipe. This is quick and delicious. I prefer lamb as it is more flavorful but others prefer beef. It is good both ways and kids love this meal. The yogurt and mint add a refreshing cool twist to the warm dish. Serve with a salad and warm pita bread. This recipe can be made ahead on the weekend and reheated before serving. If reheating, add a small amount of chicken broth.

Mock Manti
1lb. ground lamb or beef
1 large onion chopped
2 T butter Pinch of salt and pepper
1 lb. tiny shell macaroni
1T salt
1can chicken broth
Tomato sauce or Tomato juice (optional)
1cup plain yogurt
Dry mint

Bring water to a boil and add salt and the macaroni. Cook until soft
Drain macaroni; pour cold water over it and drain again.

Fry the meat with the onion, salt and pepper , in the butter slowly until well done. Add tomato juice or tomato sauce if desired. Then mix the meat and macaroni and chicken broth together and heat again. Serve topped with yogurt sprinkled with dry mint.

Friday (Good Friday)

New England Clam Chowder with Cranberry Relish
Sourdough Bread

2T butter ( or more if needed)
1 T garlic, chopped
½ cup celery, diced
½ cup carrot, diced
1 cup chopped onion
3 cups diced potatoes
1 bottle (8 ounces) clam juice
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 cans (approximately 7 ounces each) minced clams
3 tablespoons flour
2 cups half-and-half
1 cup milk

Saute onion, celery, garlic and carrots in butter; sauté until softened. Add potatoes and clam juice, salt, and pepper.
Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until potatoes are tender. Remove from heat. Add minced clams with their liquid. Whisk flour into milk; add to chowder with half-and-half. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until clam chowder thickens and bubbles, or about 3 minutes.Clam chowder recipe serves 4.

Cranberry Relish

1 16 oz pkg fresh cranberries chopped
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
½ cup honey
¼ cup red onion finely chopped

Combine all ingredients, mix well. Chill

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