Sharing is Caring !

Best Recipes and Favorite Photo's Viewed In 2011

Another year has past us by. The time goes by so fast. This has been a year of many kinds of struggles for the economy and life in general. I can reflect on one thing that makes me feel the same connection, food, family and the love of good food. I am so grateful to all my readers for their continued support, constant caring and the cyber world has touched my soul once again this year with all of you.
I want to extend my sincere thank you in 2011 for all the time you have spent commenting, reading and being a part of What's Cookin' Italian Style Cuisine.. Best wishes to all of you  and your families, to have a Happy, Safe, Healthy, New Year In 2012.

Thank you all so much for your continued cyber friendship, you all make blogging worth while...

Curt's Lemon Reggiano Lemon Fried Chicken

Puttanesca Sauce with Rigatoni

Upstate NY Feast Sausage and Peppers

Porterhouse with Italian Style Chianti Butter

24 Style Chicken Wings Baked and Fried

Baked Vanilla Donuts with White Chocolate Ganache

Blueberry Cream Cheese Bars
Pumpkin Cheesecake Cake Mix Bars
Stuffed Strawberry French Toast
Italian Cannoli Cake
Wishing you all a safe and healthy New Year, thank you for all your support in 2011... Looking forward to bringing in the New Year with all my readers... thank you,  thank you, thank you all so much!

Marinade for Lamb Recipe

Marinade for Lamb makes this so tender it's amazing!

 I am so blessed to have a close and loving family, our Christmas was wonderful, despite the economy and tough times, we have each other, that's what's important to us. The season was quite tiring for all of us, we all work somewhere in retail. Lucky for us we were all off this Christmas Day and shared making some new and wonderful memories.  One of my highlights this year working in retail was to be able to actually be part of the wonderful spirit some folks had to pay off layaway. I loved that idea so much I had to do it myself, I felt more than the rewards of just watching it happen when I did this gesture myself personally.  The expressions on peoples faces when I called them to tell them to pick up their merchandise and someone had been a secret Santa, just touched my heart so much.  So I  decided, I had to do this somewhere too.
 A customer in a local retailer didn't have enough money with her to buy what her daughter wanted. After she left,  I paid it off.  I can't tell you how good it felt. It is now added to my traditions every year, I am so happy that I made someones Christmas a little brighter this year!

Mediterranean Marinade

1/3 cup olive oil
2 lemons seeded and juiced around 1/2 cup ( if you don't have lemons use white wine which we use all the time for the leg especially)
1/2 cup fresh oregano chopped or 1/4 cup dried oregano  
6 garlic cloves (chopped)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped or 2 tablespoon dried
2 tablespoon fresh mint or 1 tablespoon dried
4 pounds leg of lamb or chops

Place the marinade in a big enough container to hold the lamb. Marinate for 4 hours or overnight before cooking.
Grill, bake or fry.
Bake the whole leg on a slow  low heat in half the juices on 250 degrees for around 1/2 hour per pound.

A very Merry bunch and more than a few good men!
( Nephew Matthew, brother John, husband Nemo, son Curt, nephew Devin and son Chad on the end)
All with hearty appetites~ my handsome bunch! Who can resist such merry men?

My son Chad's favorite!  He learned how to cook it this year and helped me too!

We hope you had a wonderful Holiday season and we all wish you a very
Happy Healthy Prosperous 2012 !

Curt's Blueberry Pancake Recipe

My son cooked my breakfast! 

One favorite meal of the day is breakfast, with all the pancake recipes out there we have tried, Curt always comes back to the one he grew up with. He definitely adapted this one to be even better, with the addition of lemon juice. The texture is light and crispier than the original. I just love having my kids learn the art of cooking and starting new adaptions of their own... what a great breakfast we all had together!

1 cup milk
1 egg
1 cup sifted flour plus 1 tablespoon
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 tablespoon canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
butter to grease griddle

Fruit suggestions: To be added to the tops while cooking on your griddle : blueberries, banana, strawberries, berries of choice raspberry or blackberry, chocolate chips or even our favorite spread with nutella!

Optional toppings: cinnamon and sugar mixed, powdered sugar for garnish

In a large bowl, sift together flour, salt, baking powder and sugar. In a small bowl, beat together egg, milk oil, vanilla and lemon juice. Stir into flour mixture.

  Heat a lightly buttered griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake.

 Brown on one side, add blueberries to the open top before flipping, flip, cook until pancake is browned on other side then garnish and serve hot.  Thanks Curt!  We loved these and look who else did too the Fonz!

Leftover Panettone Egg Strata Recipes with Fruit Baked Italian Style Toast and Homemade Panettone Bread

Actually we love this kind of bread in these baked breakfast brunch style dishes. We usually make so much we can't possibly finish all the Panettone with just making it as toast. So over the years we ended up using the leftover bread this way. Something like another favorite Challah. The bread often makes these dishes have a little sweetness and delicious addition to the already loved flavors...
 Give it a try you won't be sorry~

Ham, Sausage and Egg Strata Recipe

1 batch of  stale panettone (about 4-5 cups cubed)
4 eggs
1 cups heavy cream
1 cup milk
4 Tablespoon butter
1 pound leftover cappicola ham or sausage, cubed or sliced peperoni, (you can also serve bacon on the side)
Optional additions: Mushrooms, chopped peppers, onions, olives, or any other of your favorites
2 cups, shredded blended cheeses (mozzarella, provolone, asiago, fontina cheddar)
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder, oregano, parsley, salt and pepper
dash of cayenne pepper optional

Place butter in a 13x9 baking dish. Melt in a 350 degree oven. Take out of the oven and add the bread cubes to the pan. In a mixing bowl beat eggs, cream, cheese and spices together.  Pour over bread, sprinkle with more cheese and bake at 350  degree oven until browned.

Fruit Baked Italian French Style Toast

1 batch of  stale panettone (about 8 slices)
4 eggs
1 cups heavy cream
1 cup milk
4 Tablespoon butter
1 cup blueberries
1 cup raspberries or blackberries you can also use apples, peaches, or your favorite fruits
 1/2 cup combination of cinnamon and sugar mixed
1 container of soft honey and nut cream cheese or just plain cream cheese

Place butter in a 13x9 baking dish or two 8x8 disposable pans. Melt butter in the pan in a 350 degree oven.  Spread slices of stale panattone with cream cheese. Place bread into the baking dish into the butter. In a mixing bowl beat eggs, cream till well mixed. Pour over the bread, add the fruit to top evenly,  sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

Homemade Panettone

12 eggs
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups oil
A pinch of salt
1 tablespoon brandy
about 1 cup raisins and/or candied fruit (optional )
3 lemons zest
2 oranges zest
2 envelopes of dry traditional yeast, mixed with 2 cups of warm water and 3 tablespoons sugar
Flour, as much as needed [about 6 1/2 to 8 1/2 cups]

For egg wash
2 egg yolks beaten with 2 tablespoons water

Mix yeast in warm water to dissolve (luke warm to touch) then add 3 tablespoons sugar to this, stirring together. Beat eggs and rest of sugar together.  Add all the rest of the ingredients adding the flour a little at a time to make a soft dough adding the, zests then raisins or fruit last. Knead the dough until smooth. Let rise in a warm spot for two hours. Punch down rise again for another hour after placing small portions or balls of the dough into your prepared loaf pans or other lined style pans with parchment or greased pans. Bake at 325 degree oven and  brushing the tops with beaten egg yolks bake until light browned on top.  Place on wire racks to cool.

Fried Polenta Croquette Appetizer

Dipped in a fresh marinara I can make these a whole meal!  

Fried Polenta Appetizer:
1/2 cup of corn-meal
 around one tablespoon butter
two tablespoons grating cheese
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder or 1 clove of minced garlic
cold water
Slice of Gruyere, provolone or mozzarella cheese

For coating
 Italian flavored breadcrumbs
grating cheese
Olive oil or Canola oil  for frying

In a small saucepan boil( using package instructions)  measure  1/2 cup of corn-meal into boiling water and cook until stiff in consistency and before removing  from the stove top add a tablespoon of butter and and the grated cheese and mix well.

Pour onto a cutting board by spoonfuls using cold water to form some golf ball size rounds. These spoonfuls will be hot, the cold water will help to mold them.  On each of these croquettes place a very thin slice of  cheese, so that the cheese will adhere to the corn-meal wrapping around them. Then allow them to cool in the refrigerator on a baking sheet. When they are cold,  dip into a beaten egg, then into breadcrumbs mixed with more grating cheese. Fry in hot oil and serve with marinara sauce.

Saucy Eggs Breakfast

Taste like pizza~ this is a real Italian style egg breakfast!
1 dozen eggs
1 cup milk
1 pound Italian sausage or pepperoni
3/4 cups Italian flavored bread crumbs
1 16 oz jar or 2 cups of homemade sauce recipe 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
herbs, oregano, garlic powder, basil, parsley (dried)

 If using sausage, cook sausage until no longer pink, then drain. Set aside.

Beat eggs and milk, add crumbs and  pepperoni or sausage and pour into 13x9 baking pan that is lightly sprayed with cooking oil.  Refrigerate over night.
Preheat the oven at 350 degrees and bake for 1 to 1 1/4 hours or until set. Remove from oven.

Spread sauce on eggs and sprinkle with cheese and a little of each of the herbs. Return to the oven until cheese is melted.

Merry Christmas with Dad's Eggnog and Italian Christmas Songs


Italian Christmas Manger Prayer

God of every nation and people,
from the very beginning of creation
You have made manifest your love:

When our need for a Savior was great
You sent Your Son to be born of the Virgin Mary.

To our lives he brings joy and peace,
justice, mercy and love.

Lord, bless all who look upon this manger,
may it remind us of the humble birth of Jesus,
and raise up our thoughts to him,
who is God-with-us and Savior of all
and who lives and reigns for ever and ever.


Buon Natale.... May the peace and spirit of Christmas fill your homes with love today and always~ 
xoxo  Claudia @Whats Cookin Italian Cuisine....

 Dad's Eggnog Recipe

4 cups milk

5 whole cloves
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
12 egg yolks
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups light rum
4 cups light cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Combine milk, cloves, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and cinnamon in a saucepan, and heat over lowest setting for 5 minutes. Slowly bring milk mixture to a boil.
In a large bowl, combine egg yolks and sugar. Whisk together until fluffy. Whisk hot milk mixture slowly into the eggs. Pour mixture into saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly for 3 minutes, or until thick. Do not allow mixture to boil. Strain to remove cloves, and let cool for about an hour.
Stir in rum, cream, 2 teaspoon vanilla, and nutmeg. Refrigerate overnight before serving.

Chocolate Covered Coconut Macadamia Rum Balls

A great combinations of flavors to add to your cookie or candy tray!

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 1/2 cups chopped macadamia nuts
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 cup rum
3 1/4 cups crushed vanilla wafers
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 pkg. (12 oz.) chocolate chips
1 cup coconut
Combine crushed vanilla wafers, 3/4 cup powdered sugar, cocoa and nuts.
Mix in the corn syrup and rum.
Shape into 1-inch balls;
Melt chocolate in the microwave stirring every 30 seconds till melted. Using two fork dip each ball into the chocolate, sprinkle with coconut and place on wax paper to dry
Store in the refrigerator for a few days before serving to seep the flavors of the rum.

Festive Zucchini Cranberry Bars

If you want a festive bar for your cookie tray you just found it! A fast and delicious bar cake!

2 cups sugar
1 cup oil
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups shredded zucchini leaving some of the skin or all for the green color to come through better)
1 cup coursely chopped in food processor fresh cranberries
2 cups flour
2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 cup oatmeal (regular or instant)

 Beat all wet ingredients in a large bowl till blended together.Place all rest of the dry  ingredients into the same  bowl and blend for one minute except the zucchini and cranberries. Fold them in.  Pour into brownie size pan or 13x9 pan ( I like my cake thick and high) . Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes.

Rocky Road Cookies and Cream Peppermint Fudge

2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) semi-sweet chocolate morsels or white chocolate chips
1 cup chocolate cookies of choice I used oreo's just the cookie top part  chopped into small pieces
1 can (14 oz.)Sweetened Condensed Milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon peppermint
3 cups miniature marshmallows
optional 1/2 cup chopped pistachio or macadamia nuts
12 small peppermint puffs crushed  (these are easier to chew and not crunchy, soft ones so much easier on the teeth) or use 4 peppermint candy canes
LINE 13 x 9-inch baking pan with parchment paper and lightly spray with cooking oil.
MICROWAVE morsels and sweetened condensed milk in large, uncovered, microwave-safe bowl on HIGH (100%) power for 1 minute; STIR. Morsels may retain some of their shape. If necessary, microwave at additional 10- to 15-second intervals, stirring until smooth. Stir in peppermint extract. Fold in marshmallows, nuts and cookie pieces.PRESS mixture into prepared baking pan.

 Sprinkle with crushed peppermint puffs or candy canes. ( I placed them in a plastic bag and hit them with a rolling pin until fine chunks.)Refrigerate until ready to serve. Lift from pan; remove foil. Cut into pieces.Makes 48 pieces