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Another Friday pizza tonite.. this time I just took from what I had on hand.  Leftover meatballs, sausage, and eggplant Parmesan.   Very good.

See my other pizza postings for instructions on dough and sauce.

I used shredded mozzarella cheese with some good Parmesan cheese on the top.  The sauce was just a simple tomato sauce.

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I’ve mentioned before how my eggplant casserole is not really a vegetarian dish. I use meatballs and sausage from a large pot of spaghetti sauce and crush the meat in a separate bowl for the eggplant.

Wife is out shopping today after work, so I’m just eating alone tonite (Sadie’s here). TV, newspaper, Hurricane guide and Eggplant Parm sandwich. Its great!!!!

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Scott, Erica, and Jay on MIX 105.1 (Orlando radio) WKMG CBS radio were talking about making sandwiches from leftover spaghetti this morning.  Last night Jay scooped up a heaping wad of cooked spaghetti (with sauce I assume) and dumped between two pieces of bread and it made a tasty meal.

I called into the show this morning and offered this:

Spaghetti Sandwich

Two pieces of good bread (Italian bread, or hoagie roll)
1 Cup of cooked spaghetti (packed) with some tomato sauce – from leftover spaghetti dinner
1 TSP of butter or margarine

Put butter or margerine in a small frying pan (preferably non-stick).  Dump the glop of spaghetti into the pan and fry until just a tad golden on each side.

Pour the fried spaghetti into or onto two slices of good bread or into a sliced hoagie roll.  Grab a beer.  Delish!

ENJOY!

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This pizza – from the bottom up was: olive oil, marinara sauce, provolone cheese, carmelized sweet onions, sauted baby portobello mushrooms, sweet Italian sausage. I

  • 1 dough (from supermarket bakery – ask them for one of their Italian or French bread dough – tell them you are going to use it for pizza. Here in FL I can get it at Albertsons or Publix.
  • Shortening
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil for drizzling
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 cup marinara sauce
  • ½ lb sliced provolone cheese
  • 1 large sweet onion – slivered
  • 1/2 lb of sliced baby portobello mushrooms
  • 1 link of sweet Italian sausage left over from spaghetti and meatballs supper last weekend
  • Garlic powder
  • Dried oregano

Grease your pizza pan with shortening (omit if you are using a non-stick pan or a pizza stone). On a floured board or counter top spread or roll the dough (from the center outward) until it is the right size for your pizza pan. Place on the pizza pan and make your crust edges.

Drizzle the dough with olive oil and spread it out evenly with your hands – then sprinkle with fresh ground black pepper.

Spread marinara sauce over the dough almost to the edges.

Lay on the provolone cheese evenly.

Next add the carmelized onions, then the sauted mushrooms, and then the sausage (sliced into thin circles. You want the sausage to be on the top so that it cooks thoroughly.

Drizzle over the top with more olive oil, then shake on some garlic powder, and dried oregano.

Bake in a pre-heated 400 degree oven

for 20-25 minutes or until crust is desired color and the bottom is well done. Serve with your favorite beer or red wine and a nice salad.

Enjoy!

=Dad

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Note: My Eggplant Parmesan is NOT a vegetarian meal. It is a wonderful blend of Italian meatballs, sausage, cheese, eggplant, and home made sauce.

4 Medium/Large Firm Eggplant

4 Eggs – beaten with a little water

3 cups Italian seasoned bread crumb

Kosher Salt

1 cup Olive Oil

1 cup Vegetable Oil

Left-over meatballs (4), left over Italian sausage (3), and about two cups of left over spaghetti sauce.

½ lb sliced provolone cheese

4 oz. of shredded mozzarella cheese

Peel the eggplant and slice them a little more than ¼ inch thick.

Lay the sliced eggplant out on a large platter and generously salt them with kosher salt. Layer the slice and salt them until all of them are sliced and salted. Let them set for about an hour. A lot of dark liquid will come out of the eggplant. Be sure and drain the liquid.

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After an hour, rinse all of the eggplant under cold running water, and then pat them all dry.

In a medium bowl, beat 4 eggs with a tablespoon of water. Pour out 2 cups of seasoned bread crumbs onto a large plate. You may need to use more bread crumbs or eggs depending on the size of your eggplant.

Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees.

On a large sheet pan (it helps to have two pans) blend the olive oil and the vegetable oil.

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Dip sliced eggplant in egg and then in the bread crumbs and place on the oiled sheet pan. Do this until the sheet pan is full. If you have another pan, do the same process.

Bake the eggplant until golden brown on both sides (about 10 minutes each side). When done, lay the fried eggplant on a large platter lined with paper towel to drain the excess oil. Put paper towel between layers of eggplant to ensure proper drain.

Repeat this until all of the eggplant has been fried and let them cool a bit.

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In the meantime, using a fork or potato masher, break up the meatballs and sausage with some sauce. Then add the rest of the sauce and mix.

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In 9 X 9 baking dish – spread some sauce on the bottom of the baking dish.

Line the pan with the first layer of eggplant. Next put down three slices of provolone cheese and a little of the shredded mozzarella cheese. Next, spoon on some of the meat/sauce mixture. Repeat these steps until the baking dish is full, or you’ve used up all of the eggplant. Top with any remaining sauce and cheese.

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Bake –covered (I use a sheet of parchment paper covered with aluminum foil) for 1 hour at 350 degrees.

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(ok, it’s not a perfect picture, I had to try some!!)

My family loves to make eggplant sandwiches using Portuguese Rolls. Sometimes I will cook angel hair pasta and top with a nice square of eggplant parmesan and extra sauce.

Enjoy. If you have questions, write me at dadcooks at reciperedux dot com.

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Toby, you were a great friend to us – I know you are in doggy heaven. We love you.

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We had company from Cincinnati last night and a big request for pizza. Since we follow the dictate of – no meat of Fridays during Lent, I made three excellent meat-less pizzas.

1. Caramelized Sweet Onion and Baby Bella mushrooms with homemade pizza sauce and provolone cheese – got rave reviews on that one.

2. Greek Pizza – with the obvious – homemade pizza sauce, pre-cooked spinach w/garlic, chopped Kalamata Olives (pitted), fried eggplant, and Feta cheese.

3. Pepper Pizza – Slivers of Red and Green Bell Peppers with rings of Cubanelle Peppers – homemade sauce, provolone cheese as well.

I always dust the pizza (no matter what the toppings are) with garlic powder and dried oregano before putting them in the oven at 400 (for 25 minutes).

Try these… they were a real hit last night.

Sorry I don’t have any photos – I was so busy serving – and I might have had too much wine 😉

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This recipe for Chicken Vesuvio came from a local restaurant in the Orlando, FL area – Pebbles. As far as I know the restaurant has closed in our area (I think there were 4 or 5 in the Orlando area) and I really liked this dish. It was published in the Orlando Sentinel as well as Restaurant Secrets of Central Florida. Hope you like it.

Pebbles’ Chicken Vesuvio

8 Tbs. (1 stick) unsalted butter

4 oz demi-glaze

2 tsp. capers

2 oz white wine (Chardonnay)

2 ½ tsp. chopped garlic

1 oz lemon juice

2 egg yolks

1 sprig fresh rosemary

8 oz ( ½ lb) of your favorite pasta

½ tsp. oregano (fresh)

4 Italian plum tomatoes

½ tsp. chopped fresh parsley (garnish)

½ tsp. each salt and pepper

10 to 12 snow pea pods – blanched

½ tsp. tobasco

½ red pepper, julienned

8 oz chicken breast, skinned and cut into strips

¼ cup grated Romano or Asiago cheese

In a large sauté pan, melt 4 tablespoons of the butter. Add capers, ½ teaspoon of the chopped garlic, lemon juice, rosemary, oregano, parsley, salt, pepper and tobasco; stir to make Vesuvio butter.

Add chicken strips to pan and sauté over medium heat until browned on both sides. Add remaining 2 teaspoons chopped garlic, demi-glaze, wine and lemon juice; let mixture cook until reduced in volume by one-third. Whisk in remaining 4 tablespoons butter. Remove pan from heat; stir in egg yolks and continue stirring until sauce thickens. Add hot pasta and plum tomatoes.

Turn pasta out onto a platter. Garnish with parsley, snow peas and red pepper if desired. Top with grated cheese.

Makes two servings. Serve with your favorite Chardonnay.

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I have a very nice recipe book called “PIZZERIA” by Evan Kleiman that had what I thought was a great recipe – Pizza with Spinach, Sausage, Salami, and Red Pepper. Sound good doesn’t it? It turned out AWFUL. It was wet, had a weird taste, and to boot – the dough didn’t perform as expected. I can’t believe I made such a crappy pizza. Oh well, I think I’ll stick to my basic recipes (you can see from previous posts). They always come out great.

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Publix Pizza Dough

1 ½ cups home made pizza sauce

Fresh Mozzarella Cheese

Olive Oil

Salt and Freshly ground black pepper

Sweet Italian Sausage

Cubanelle Pepper sliced into rings (these are a little hot – but not too hot)

Dried Oregano

Drizzle of Olive Oil

Garlic powder

 

Roll out the dough to fit your greased pizza pan.  Prick the dough with a fork to make holes.  Drizzle a little olive oil on to the dough and spread with the palm of your hand.  Sprinkle a little black pepper.  Ladle the sauce onto the dough.  Carefully place the mozzarella cheese on so that it covers evenly.  Sprinkle small pieces of sweet Italian Sausage over the pizza.  Sprinkle the cubanelle pepper rings over the top.  Dust with dried oregano and garlic powder, then sprinkle a little more olive oil over the top.  Bake at 400 degrees (for about 20-25 minutes) until the bottom is well done and the top looks so good you could eat it. 😉


Enjoy – Happy Friday !!!!

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Of Christmas, Yes – but also of Lemons!

Lemon Tree

Lemons

When we bought this house two years ago it came with a dog – Sadie

Sadie and Lemons

 

and citrus trees. One pink grapefruit tree, one honeybell orange tree, and one lemon tree. The lemons should turn yellow in January or February. You can’t see them very well, but there are about 24 lemons on this tree. So hopefully you’ll see some lemon dishes getting published here.

Merry Christmas everyone !!!

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These have been a favorite in our house for over forty years. They are wonderful!!

Sicilian Meatball Cookies

 


(Original recipe from Favorite Italian Recipes, 2nd Edition St. Anthony’s Parish, Watertown, NY; recipe submitted by Annie Cumoletti – 1973.

6 cups Flour

¼ tsp salt

1 cup shortening

½ tsp baking soda

½ tsp cloves

2 cups sugar

¾ cup cocoa

2 cups milk

2 tsp baking powder

½ tsp cinnamon

Put all dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. Blend in the shortening and lastly the milk. You will have to use your hands to mix this as it is a sticky dough.

Put a little shortening on your hands when you roll this dough into little balls (use a teaspoon to measure). Do not make these balls large, as they rise quite a bit. Leave space between them on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.

Bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes.

Make a thin chocolate frosting and cover the baked cookies by rolling them in a large bowl of frosting. Lay out on a large pan or rack until they are dry.

Alternatively, just before serving, you can dust these cookies with some confectioners sugar.

Note: You can divide the dough and put nuts in some, raisins in some and coconut in some.

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Meatballs

 

I made meatballs today, but this time I just kind of threw it together. Here’s what I used

 

2 lb ground chuck

4 links of sweet Italian sausage (meat pulled from the casing)

Six slices of Pepperidge Farm white bread crumbled (rubbing bread in hands to crumble)

1 cup of seasoned bread crumbs

Sprinkling of milk

3 cloves garlic chopped

1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

½ medium onion chopped

1/3 of a large green pepper chopped (fine)

2 eggs beaten

Couple of shakes of extra virgin olive oil

 

1 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp ground black pepper

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp dried savory

¼ tsp ground red pepper

¼ tsp ground paprika

1 tbsp fennel seed

 

In a very large working bowl combine the ground chuck and the sausage and blend the two with your hands. Add the bread that has been moistened with sprinkling of milk. Add in all of the rest of the ingredients in the order listed. Add a little water to the whole mixture and a few shakes of olive oil.

 

My mother-in-law always added fennel seed to her meatballs. She thought it was great for Italian Sausage, it should be good for meatballs —- and it is… my family loves them that way. Try it.

 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Roll the meatballs and put them in baking dishes and add a little water to the dishes before putting them into the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the meat is fully cooked. They will cook some more when you add them to your sauce pot later.

=Dad

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I had a request for to post my recipe for Louisiana Red Beans and Rice. Here it is. Enjoy.

Louisiana Red Beans and Rice with Sausage

1 pound of dried red kidney beans
1 pound smoked link sausage halved lengthwise and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices OR hot Italian sausage- cooked and cut into pieces,
1 large onion, chopped
2 pale-green inner celery ribs (with leaves), chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced, or to taste
6 cups water OR 2 cans of chicken broth – add more if needed
4 bay leaves
1 tablespoon dried thyme, crumbled
2 teaspoons dried oregano, crumbled
1 teaspoon Tabasco
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
2 teaspoons salt, or to taste

Serve over white rice

In a bowl soak beans in water to cover by 2 inches overnight. In a 6-quart heavy kettle combine all ingredients except 1/2 pound sausage. Bring mixture to a boil using 2 cans of chicken broth (or water if you don’t have broth) and simmer, covered, over moderate heat 1 ½ to 2 hours. Remove lid and cook mixture at a bare simmer 1 hour more, adding more liquid if mixture is too thick.

Remove 1 cup bean mixture and mash into a paste with a potato masher. Stir bean paste and remaining 1/2 pound sausage into bean mixture and simmer 5 minutes.

Serve with white rice.

 

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