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I love to cook and have wanted a place to store the recipes. Every time I make something at home that comes out great I will post it on this blog. I will also place a picture of how it turned out. Over time I will build up quite an online library to share. Please to post or email new ideas and feedback. Thanks for visiting and come back soon.
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Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Savory Garden Cheesecake

vegetarianWho says you cannot have cheesecake for diner. This is a wonderful savory cheese cake.

OK, I agree cheesecake is a ploy. It is more like a really thick quiche, but I made you look.

3 zucchini shredded
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tbsp shredded fresh basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion (diced)
2 tbsp flour
2 tbsp crushed garlic
juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup fresh parsley
3 cups ricotta
1 cup mozzarella
1/2 cup Parmesan
3 eggs
2 remade savory pie crusts
2 tomatoes
2 tbsp bread crumbs

Mix zucchini, basil, oregano , thyme and garlic salt in a strainer and set aside. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in skillet add onion and saute a few minutes (till they start to turn transparent). Stir in the zucchini followed by the flour, lemon and parsley. Set mixture aside.

In another bowl thoroughly mix the eggs and cheese. Add in the zucchini mixture and blend well.

Brush the remaining olive oil over the pie crusts. Pour the mixture between the 2 crusts. Top with sliced tomatoes and bread crumbs. Bake at 375 for 50 minutes. Let cool at least 20 minutes before serving. It will thicken more if you refrigerate.

Monday, August 29, 2005

Coffee May be Good for You

Check out the results of this new study. Coffee has shown to have many antioxidants that may help fight cancer and heart disease.

Now there is some good news to start your Monday.

Next they will tell you chocolate is good for you :).


Saturday, August 27, 2005

Veggie Pasta

vegetarianHere is another simple pasta I made the other night. I believe this one was better, but this is what I had around the house. Still pretty good as a main on night and a side dish the next night.

1 cup uncooked pasta
1 red onion
1 green pepper
2 large tomatoes
olive oil
juice of 1 lemon

Cook the pasta and mix it up.

Cheesy Bread

vegetarianLast night Eric came over an brought LOBSTERS. You gotta love that. So I figured what do I make to go with Lobsters. So I made the only thing that I could stands out in my mind from the Red Lobster menu, their awesome cheesy bread (or at least something simalar).

2 cups Bisquick baking mix
1 egg
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 tsp Garlic powder or garlic salt
1 tbsp parsley (diced)

Blend ingredients in a mixing bowl. Spoon on to a greased cookie sheet. Cook for 10 - 12 minutes at 425.

Steamed Lobster

Last night our friend Eric came over with a Very special treat LOBSTERS. There is not much you want to do to a lobster. You don't want to hide the wonderful taste at all.

sea salt

Place a steaming rack into a large pot. Boil about an sea salt and inch and a half of water.

There are lots of theories on how to calm the lobsters down so that they are not as shocked when you cook them. Eric said something about hypnotizing them by petting them somewhere. We did not do that, but we did place them in the freezer for a couple of minutes before placing them in the pot.

Cover and steam. You want to cook them until their antenna are easily plucked off. Cook about 14 minutes for a 1 lb lobster and 2 minutes per quarter pound after that.

Now how do you eat them?

Start with the legs. There is not much meat here, but it is a good warm up. Break off one leg at a time. Use your teeth to suck out the meat from each section.

Next move to the claws. Here you may need a nut cracked to break the sections. Here you should get some good chunks of meat that you can drip in butter.

Now you want to move on to the body. Twist the tail to break it away from the body. There is some good meat in the body. I discard the green guts. If you have red these are eggs and are considered by some a delicacy. There is also meat around the ribs etc.

Finally you have saved the best for last, the tail. Pull upward on both sides of the tail till it cracks. The meat will go to one side or the other. Push it out from the side it is sticking to. Cut up dip in butter and enjoy.


Friday, August 26, 2005

Ahi Cubes

These Ahi cubes can be served as an appetizer or as shown here a main dish. According to the Kalani meter they are a bit too spicy. I do not agree, but you can always put less chili sauce if you do not like you food spicy.

sesame oil
1 shallot (diced)
1 lb ahi (tuna) cut into 1 inch cubes
3 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tbsp chili sauce
fresh pepper
1 cup parsley sprigs
2 green onion stalks

Heat the oil and the shallot in a frying pan. Add the Ahi and cook to taste ( if it is fresh ahi I would recomend just browning the outside, leaving it seared). Mix the sauces in a bowl. In another bowl mix the parsley, green onion, pepper and fish. Serve the fish on top the plates and drizzle in the sauce over the fish.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Vegetable Lasagna

vegetarianHere is a good vegetarian lasagna. This one I used zucchini mushroom and onion, but you could use all kinda of veggies. I am using jared pesto and spaghetti sauce, but you can ofcourse make your own.

I was going to make this the last night my mom was here, but we ended up going out to diner. So I made this yesterday for Kalani and me. Now we have lasagna for days (Yum).

12 oz package lazagna noodles
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp garlic
1 package portobello mushrooms (cut into chunks)
1 sweet onion (sliced)
1 large zucchini (thinly sliced)
1 8-10 oz jar pesto sauce
12 oz ricotta cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3 cups your favorite spaghetti sauce
8 oz mozzarella cheese

Cook noodles as per the package instruction. Heat oil and garlic in a skillet. Saute mushrooms for a few minutes (till they soften a bit) and place aside. Add onions to the skillet and saute till brown and set aside. Saute zucchini for 2 minutes and place in a mixing bowl with onions, mushrooms and pesto. In another bowl mix the ricotta and Parmesan.

Heat oven to 350. Get out a 9x13 inch baking dish. Start with one cup of spaghetti sauce spread at the bottom. Next place 3 lasagna noodles, half the veggies and half the cheese. Repeat these levels. Top with remaining noodles spaghetti sauce and mozzarella. Bake for 30 minutes.

Tofu Stir Fry

vegetarianMy mom came to visit us last week, so I did not have time to post new enteries in a while. However, I did have time to cook us some diners and take some pictures. I will be posting them soon (I do have to try to remember what I put in each recipe, so it is more than possible that I will miss something).

This dish is another Asian noodles dish similar to the pad thai I made last week. This dish is all veggie and uses different noodles.

6 oz package bean thread noodles
Oil of frying
8 oz firm tofu (cut into 1 inch squares)
2 bunches broccoli floweretts (chopped)
1 shallot (diced)
1 tbsp crushed garlic
3 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp soy sauce 1 tsp chili sauce
1 tsp sugar
1 chili pepper (diced)
1 egg

Soak noodles for 45 minutes or so and set aside. Heat enough oil in a wok to cover the tofu. Once the oil is hot enough that a drop of water will sizzle add the tofu. Fry till tofu starts to brown (about 10 minutes) and set aside on paper towel. Pour oil into a can to set aside or dispose. Add broccoli and stir fry to your taste (perhaps 5 minutes or so) and set aside.

Next add the sesame oil, shallot, chili sauce, sugar and garlic and chili pepper. Blend well cooking for a couple more minutes. Scramble in egg and than add the noddles. Mix well. Last mix in the broccoli and tofu.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Sweet Banana Mahi Mahi

4 small Mahi Mahi filets
1/4 cup butter
2 eggs
1 cup flower
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/2 cup sesame seeds
3 bananas (cut in half lengthwise and in 1 inch pieces)
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp coconut flakes
1 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350

Melt butter in a skillet. Crack eggs into a mixing bowl and beat them. Place flour salt and pepper in another bowl and mix well. Spread 1/4 of the sesame seeds on a small plate in a thin layer. Take one filet dip it in the egg, than in the flour mixture, than the seeds and place it in the skillet. Repeat with the other filets, refilling the sesame seed plate each time. Once they are all in the skillet dump remaining seeds over the fish. Cook in skillet till brown on each side.

Mix sugar, coconut and cinnamon in a small bowl. Mix in the bananas with the sugar mixture. Add Mahi Mahi to a small baking dish. Pour bananas over the fish. Cook for 15 minutes (or until fish is cooked all the way through).

Monday, August 15, 2005

Kitchen of the week

I was just voted Best New Kitchen of the week by the Kitchen Parade site. Check it out they have a bunch of great veggie recipes.

Thanks Kitchen Parade.

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Salmon Pie

Diane Steele from Patricia's Super Discount Center

When I lived in Maine there was a bakery and it's not there now but I so loved their Salmon Pie. Do you have a recipe for it? It's so good!
Thanks for your email. First off, I have to admit that I have never had a salmon pie. I asked my friends from Maine and none of them have ever had a salmon pie. So I dug around on the internet and looked for recipes. I pulled what sounded good from several recipes. I can honestly said this is the best salmon pie I ever tasted (again that is not saying much) :).

Most salmon pies seem to be a mix of salmon and garlic mashed potatoes in a savory pie crust. So that is what I made.

For salmon:
1 lb salmon fillet
6 oz sliced mushrooms
olive oil
white pepper

Sauted the salmon and mushrooms in olive oil and a bit of white pepper. Flaked fish and set a side.

For mashed potatoes

6 medium-small red potatoes
1 tbsp chopped garlic
1/4 cup butter
2 green onions (diced)
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1 tbsp chopped fresh oregano
1/2 cup heavy cream

Boiled potatoes, drained and mashed them up. Melted butter and added herbs. Poured butter, herbs, salmon. mushrooms and cream in with the potatoes and mixed.

I could tell you how I made the pie crust, but it turned out chalky and crumbly, so instead I will recommend buying a pre-made savory (not sweet) pie crust. Fill it with the mixture and bake at 350 for about 30 mins (till crust browns).

Hope this is close to your recipe.

Fresh Tomato Pasta Salad

vegetarianTime for fresh vine ripe tomatoes here in North Carolina. So this afternoon I made this great pasta salad for lunch. This is dish works well all by it's self or you could also bring it as a side dish for a large gathering (like a summer time cook out).

2 cups uncooked curly pasta (I used whole wheat fusilli)
4 Large vine ripe tomatoes (chopped)
1 yellow bell pepper (chopped)
1 cucumber (chopped)
3 tbsp fresh mint leaves (chopped)
1 tbsp fresh oregano (chopped)
15 kalamata olives (pitted and chopped)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 small red onion sliced
1 tbsp crushed garlic
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 package crumbled feta cheese
salt and fresh ground pepper

Boil pasta, drain and set a side. Mix the tomatoes, pepper, cucumber, mint. Oregano and olive is a large mixing bowl. Heat oil in a skillet. Saute onions and garlic for a few minutes till onions soften. Mix in the vinegar. Pour hot mixture in with the vegetables and toss. Top with feta and salt and pepper.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Beef Broccoli

Thursday I cooked this Beef Broccoli. It is a classic Chinese dish (one of Kalani's favorites) and very easy to put together.

For Marinade:
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp Cornstarch
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar

1 lb broccoli (or gai lan) - cut into large chunks
1 lb lean steak (i.e. flank steak) - cut into strips
sesame oil
1 tbsp crushed garlic
2 tsp ground ginger
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sherry
2 tsp sugar
1 green onion
sesame seeds for garnish

Mix marinade in a small bowl. Pour over steak and mix and marinate for 20 minutes. Meanwhile heat 1 tsp oil in wok. Cook broccoli to desired crispness and set aside. Add another tsp of oil with garlic, ginger and soy sauce, sherry and sugar. Cook steak till cooked through. Add green onion and broccoli and mix. Top with sesame seeds. Serve over rice.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Stuffed Eggplant

vegetarianThis is a cool recipe because you can use the skin of the eggplant as the serving bowl. I made this one with the Pad Thai the other night.

2 Thai eggplants
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp crushed red pepper
1 tbsp garlic
6 oz mushrooms sliced
1/2 lime juice
2 tsp fish sauce
1/4 cup fresh basil (torn)
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
1 tbsp lemon grass

Cut the eggplants in half and scoop out most of the meat and cut it into small chunks. Heat oil in a wok and add garlic and red pepper. Add eggplant meat and stir fry for a couple minutes. Add mushrooms, fish sauce and lime juice and cook for another minute or so. Stir in the herbs.

Pour the stir fry back into the eggplant skins. Garnish with fresh basil.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Pad Thai

Illyria Jones of The Happy Phantom posted...

Hey Kevin!

I love your site! One of my favorites. I think it is because we like to cook a lot of the same types of food --especially pan-Asian. So here's my question. I'm betting that you have made your own Pad Thai before, and as you know, there are tons of variations of this awesome dish. Every time I cook it, I do it differently: I change the size of the rice noodles, or use more eggs or splurge for grilled tofu over regular extra firm tofu. But the sauce is the trickiest for me. These days, I buy a jar from the Asian supermarket, but that's a bit hard now that I am in Marvinsburg. When I make my own sauce, it is often too thin and too tangy --too much rice vinegar or too tangy-sweet --too much sugar AND vinegar. I know I need to add more to it to give it a kick and spice it up and definitely thicken it up, but what? I would appreciate you thoughts on pad thai and would love to see you post what you think is the best pad thai recipe on your site.



Thanks for you post and your kind words about my site. I have to admit I have not made my own Pad Thai that often, but here is how I make it.

I did not go to the Asian market, so I have the only rice noodles they have at my Harris Teeter (They just say Pad Thai - Rice Noodles). I also bought tofu, but decided to leave it out since I had so much shrimp. As you can see I do not put any rice vinegar (perhaps that may be missing from my recipe).

8 oz rice noodles
3 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp crushed red pepper
sesame oil
3 shallots (thinly sliced)
1 tbsp crushed garlic
4 red chili peppers (seeded and chopped)
juice of 1/2 lime
3/4 lbs shrimp (cooked, peeled and deviened)
3 green onion stalks (chopped)
6 oz mung bean spouts
3 eggs
Fresh Cilantro (for garnish)

Soak the noodles in luke warm water for about an hour (till they soften). At the same time mix fish sauce, sugar, crushed red pepper and a dash of sesame oil. Drain noodles and set aside.

Heat a couple tsps of oil in wok and add the shallots and chilies. Cook for a couple minutes. Add shrimp, noodles and blended sauce and the lime juice . Stir fry for another couple minutes. Mix in green onions and bean sprouts.

Make a hole in the middle of ingredients down to the wok. Crack an egg and lightly stir it. Scramble as it cooks. Toss the egg in with the rest of the food. Repeat with the other two eggs.

Serve fresh cilantro and hot sauce (which there is a thing of too much of :) )

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Baked Salmon

This is a simple but effective way to make Salmon.

4 small salmon fillets.
1/4 cup butter
juice of 1 small lemon
1/8 cup dry vermouth
1/4 tsp celery salt
1/8 tsp onion salt
1/8 tsp caraway seeds
1/8 tsp dillseeds
4 bay leaves
1/8 cup capers
olive oil

Heat oven to 350. Melt the butter in a small mixing bowl. Mix in the butter, lemon, vermouth, salts and seeds. Grease a small baking dish. Place fillets in the dish. Pour lemon butter mixture over the fish. Place one bay leaf on each fillet. Top with capers and bake for 10 - 12 minutes.

Per a reader's request, I am also looking for a good salmon pie recipe. So if you have a good recipe or you know a key to a good salmon pie recipe please submit it here.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Avocado Spinach Salad

vegetarianThis is our first reader submitted recipe. It comes from Chandira at Diary of a Hope Fiend.

Chandria writes...
1 bag washed lettuce or spinach (if you're lazy like me, or else wash
your own!)
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 cubed avocado
1 grated carrot
1 cup cubed cucumber
1/2 cup chopped almonds
1 tbsp of sesame seeds
generous sprinkle of Braggs Liquid Aminos or soy sauce.

Nice, low calorie fat-free fresh salad, with lots of taste
combinations. Very good by itself, or with garlic mashed potato and sauted


As you can see I made this recipe with spinach leaves. I also toasted the sesame seeds in my toaster oven with a splash of sesame oil. For the dressing I used a 1/4 cup of soy sauce and I added the juice of half a lime and a touch of ginger.

I found this salad delightful. The sweetness of the cranberries complemented the salty tang of the dressing. The taste of almonds and the toasted sesame seeds are the tastes that stuck with me after finishing the meal.

Kalani thought it would be better on lettuce (but she is not a huge fan of raw spinach any way).

I would definitely recommend this salad. Thanks for the submission Chandira. I hope to hear from others, with their favorite recipes.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Penne Alla Vodka

vegetarianOK this is not penne it is ziti left over from the baked ziti. It is close enough.

I got a pretty good response when I posted the baked ziti, so I figured I would post another pasta dish. This one was made vegetarian, but you could add chicken or even bacon.

1/2 lb penne (or in my case ziti)
2 bunches of broccoli crowns (chop into spears)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp crushed garlic
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1 small onion (diced)
1/2 cup vodka
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 goat cheese
2 tomatoes (chopped)
1/4 cup basil (torn into strips)
freshly ground pepper and Romano cheese for topping

Cook pasta as directed, drain and set aside. Steam broccoli and set aside. Heat oil in a pan and add garlic, red peppers and onion. Cook for a couple of minutes. Add vodka and cook for 4 minutes while stirring. Add cream, cheese and tomatoes and cook till blended. Remove from heat.

In a large pot or mixing bowl, blend pasta, basil, broccoli and sauce. Serve topped with pepper and cheese.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Submit Your Recipes

If you have a recipe or an idea for a recipe you would like to see on my site send it to me at If it looks good to me I will try it at home, take a picture and post it with a review.

In the email you should include the recipe, any background or description of the recipe, along with any info on you that you would like me to post (Name, email, web site, URL of a photo etc.).

I look forward to hearing from you.


Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Thai Green Curry

This dish can be may with any combination of your favorite vegetables and meats. I just put in what I had around the house, but you can be real creative here. I partial to the green curry, but you can also try the red and yellow. They are all good.

I served this with the left over Vietnamese Spring Rolls and jasmine rice.

vegetarianThis recipe is great with tofu or just all vegetables.

2 tbsp sesame oil
1 shallot (diced)
2 hot red peppers (seeded and cut into strips)
2 chicken breast (cut into strips)

1/3 cup bamboo shoots
1/2 frozen peas
1/2 cut shredded cabbage

1 can coconut milk
1 tbsp green curry paste
3 tbsp fish sauce
2 tbsp brown sugar

1/3 cup fresh basil (torn into shreds)

In Wok or large skillet heat oil and shallot and peppers. Add chicken and cook till chicken is cook all the way through.

Stir in vegetables followed by the coconut milk, curry paste, fish sauce and sugar. Mix well than reduce heat to low. Add basil. Serve over rice.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Baked Ziti

Baked Ziti is a great for Sunday dinners or large gatherings. It is a bit of an effort to make, but it is well worth it. You can do everything but bake it and store in the refrigerator till an hour before it is time to eat.

vegetarianTo make this vegetarian you can use veggie sausage or leave the meat out all togeather.

1/2 pound ziti
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp crushed garlic
1 lb spicy italian sausage
4 cups your favorite spaghetti sauce
1 onion (chopped)
1 large zucchini (cut into small strips)
1 bell pepper (cut in to small strips)
1 container baby bella mushrooms (sliced)
1/2 cup fresh grated romano cheese
1/2 cup ricotta
8 oz shredded mozzarella

Cook ziti as directed (adding a bit of salt is nice). In a large skillet heat oil and garlic over medium heat. Add sausages and cook till brown than place on the side. Add onion cook for 1 minute. Next add zucchini and pepper cook for 2 more minutes. Cook for 1 more minute after adding mushrooms. Stir in the spaghetti sauce and set aside.

Heat oven to 350. In a mixing bowl mix ziti with 1/2 of the sauce mix. In a baking dish pour 1/2 of the mixed ziti. Spread the ricotta cheese over the zitti. Add the mozzarella and 1/2 of the romano followed by 1/2 of the remaining sauce. Next pour in the remaining ziti followed by the remaining sauce. Finally top with the rest of the romano.

Bake covered for 45 minutes and uncovered for another 15 - 20 minutes.