Summer Parmesan Fish Recipe

Here is a mild white fish (you can use whatever you like) with an Italian style salsa topping, baked to perfection. You can actually use any kind of chicken breast, steak, or for the total vegetarian try using zucchini sliced lengthwise for your base leaving the skin on. When you bake this with all the herbs and spices it becomes a perfect summer dinner, adding some detox water, a light salad and your off to that summer weight off body!

Here's all you do:
4 or more pieces Boneless white fish such as halibut, haddock, tilapia or use boneless chicken breast, ( for vegetarian use cut lenghtwise zucchini or eggplant sliced in half)
2 zucchini slices in wedges
grape or cherry tomatoes
grating Parmesan or Romano cheese
shredded low fat mozzarella
bread crumbs Italian flavored
olive oil
1/4 cup vegetable broth, chicken broth or white wine
1 green, orange or yellow bell pepper chopped in small pieces
2 cloves minced garlic
2 plum tomatoes pureed in the food processor
salt, pepper, garlic powder, dried oregano and a hand full of freshly chopped basil to taste

In a deep baking pan large enough to put all the pieces your using, spray it heavy with cooking oil. 
In a small bowl add 1/2 cup bread crumbs, minced garlic, 3 tablespoons olive oil, 2 tablespoons grating cheese mix this all together. Spread on each piece of fish this is for 4 pieces. 

Pour the broth around the bottom edges of the fish not touching the bread crumbs.

Top the bread crumb mixture with sliced grape tomatoes, bell peppers and zucchini. Sprinkle lightly with salt, pepper, garlic powder, oregano.  Bake around 25 minutes at 400 degree hot oven.

Take out of the oven and top with some pureed fresh plum tomatoes, sprinkle with shredded mozzarella and more grating cheese and some fresh basil.

+claudia lamascolo  Author

Summer Pasta Recipe

If you are looking for a lighter style meal but still filling, this is it. Travels well too if your going to a picnic or need to bring something for a delicious potluck. Seafood lovers will go for seconds with this shrimp filled pasta dish! If you love pasta with vegetables and seafood this is the summer meal for you!

2 pounds large shrimp cleaned, scallops or any other shell fish you like

Note: you can substitute boiled chicken breast cubed or cut up Turkey breast

1 pound fresh plum tomatoes cleaned and put through the food 
processor leaving chunks

3  cloves fresh minced garlic

olive oil

1/2 cup white wine

springs of fresh parsley

fresh basil

1 bag of fresh spinach around 12 to 16 ounces

1 pound broccoli florets par boiled

Optional additions: sliced peppers, black sliced olives, sliced onions can be added with the tomatoes. 

 Cooked Pasta boiled in salt water to package directions. 

In a large fry pan, add 1/4 cup olive oil, garlic, broccoli florets and spinach. Saute until spinach has wilted. Add the white wine and tomatoes. Cook for around 8 minutes.
In the meantime boil your favorite pasta ,( penne pictured) and set aside.
Add the shrimp to the pan and cook until the shrimp turns pink, around 4 to 5 minutes. Add the fresh herbs and stir. Mix drained pasta with shrimp mixture and serve.

+claudia lamascolo  Author

Italian Amaretto Iced Coffee Recipe

Amaretto Iced Coffee is one of the most refreshing brunch drinks I have ever had. Even if you just love just black coffee no sugar, try adding just a little bit of Amaretto to it to enhance this delicious beverage. Of course if you would prefer no alcohol, just add the a few drops of  flavored syrup to the brew.

Italian Amaretto Iced Coffee Recipe

1 cup ground coffee use either espresso or dark roast
1 fine mesh strainer
1 32 ounce glass container with a lid of mason jar quart size
spring water or any filtered water
1 or 2 coffee filters to strain the grounds 

Place the coffee into the container with the water. Leave overnight.

Next day, place the filter into the mesh strainer and pour this liquid into the filter lined mesh strainer over a large bowl.

Wait until it catches all the grinds. Replace filter as needed. Removing all coffee grounds.

You can actually just heat this coffee to make a regular cup using equal parts of this coffee mixture with half coffee and half water, this is a strong brew that's concentrated.

Iced Coffee:

Italian Style:

Pour coffee into a large glass to half coffee mixture, add the other half water then 1 shot of Amaretto more or less to taste fill with ice. Add Amaretto flavored syrup for non alcohol.

Other suggestions like a Starbucks Knockoff:

Fill with half coffee and half milk, add ice, then add sugar to taste or flavored syrups of your choice.

Spicy Shrimp Topped Cod Recipe

Are you getting ready to eat some lighter foods? Here is a healthier version than fried. I know that fried fish is always no comparison when it comes to anything breaded but if you are trying to still get some great flavor with your seafood try this baked Italian Style cod topped with rosa plum sliced tomatoes and baby shrimps. You will need to adapt the amount of ingredients by the amount of fish you will be using. This is wonderful over rice or boil some of your favorite macaroni. The juice it makes is fabulous!

Spicy Shrimp Topped Cod Recipe

2 sliced rosa plum tomatoes
1 cup or more baby shrimp
Italian flavored bread crumbs with parmesan cheese added (or add your own to them)
4 pieces of cod cleaned rinsed
cayenne pepper to taste I used around 1/4 teaspoon
1 teaspoon minced garlic
garlic powder
dried oregano
4 tablespoons or more of olive oil
1/4 cup either chicken stock or white wine
2 tablespoons freshly chopped parsley 
freshly cracked black pepper
salt to taste

Spray a deep baking dish with oil. Place fish flat in the bottom of the baking dish, 13x9 or depending how much you cook. Place sliced tomatoes on each piece of fish. Add the shrimp evenly Mix the garlic, herbs, salt, pepper to taste in with the bread crumbs. Place on each piece of fish and tomatoes, using around 1 cup or more. Sprinkle the top with garlic powder. Carefully pour the wine or chicken stock around the bottom of the fish not to touch the topping. Drizzle olive oil over each piece.  Add more spices to taste if you wish. Bake on 350 until the fish flakes easily around 35 minutes and the bread crumbs look toasted. Serve with any boiled pasta or rice. The juice is wonderful.
+claudia lamascolo  Author

Mason Jar Chocolate Chip Biscotti Trifle Recipe

If you love a cheese no bake filling or even any style pudding flavor that's layered with crumbled chocolate chip biscotti and some fresh fruits, creamy filling, well then,  your in for a real treat Patriotic Style dessert.
These layered desserts are easy to make and quick to put together for a bunch of guests. Whether you make everything homemade or store bought, they will love this creamy festive dessert to end your any gathering.  Everyone will ask you for the recipe!

Take a peek on how to assemble this great little treat!
The kids will love to help you too!

Chocolate Chip Biscotti Mason Jar Trifle Recipe

Mini mason jars as many as you need for your guests or  small glass trifle dishes

Chocolate chip biscotti broken into pieces, use store bought (or my recipe adding chocolate chips and vanilla to the same recipe dough omit other flavoring)

1 recipe cheese filling below or use an instant brand to package instructions
whipped cream either homemade or store bought
fresh strawberries sliced
fresh blueberries

Fill the bottom of you mason jar with whipped cream (whipped topping is fine too) add some strawberries and blueberries alternating around the edges and fill the center of the whipped cream. Add the broken biscotti cookie on top. Then spread the cheese filling on top of the cookies.
 Add more fruits, cookies and cheese filling to fill the top. End with whipped cream, a piece of cookie and garnish with a strawberry dipped in strawberry jam.

Cheese Filling:
1 package mascarpone cheese 8 ounce (or you can substitute all cream cheese in this recipe) room temperature
4 ounces cream cheese 
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 powdered sugar or more to taste
Beat all together in a bowl until smooth and well blended

+claudia lamascolo Author

Grilled Bacon wrapped Scallop Recipe

Actually you only need a few ingredients to make these delicious grilled scallops, however I have a little secret sauce to pour over them after they are done. Not a dieters dream but hey you have to indulge just once in a blue moon. Save these  for a special occasion, they taste gourmet in the end! The taste if your a scallop lover are divine. They are one of my favorites the bacon and the sauce recipe are perfect together! Hope you enjoy them too!

Extra large Scallops
Maple Flavored Smoked Bacon
Garlic powder
Cayenne pepper
Juice of a half a lemon no seeds

Chili Powder
Aluminum Foil
Cooking Spray

 Partially cook the bacon until starting to brown in a fry pan or microwave. Lay out the tin foil and spray it with cooking spray. Place a few scallops on the foil and wrap them with bacon or just add it in small pieces.  Sprinkle with garlic powder, cayenne if you like a little heat Squeeze the lemon of the top. You can now bake these or throw them package on the grill. Baking at 425 for around 15 minutes, then if the bacon isn't crisp enough broil for a few minutes until bacon crisps up. On the grill for around 20 minutes on high and check at 15 minutes.

Butter Sauce:
In the meantime melt 1 stick of butter with 1teaspoon of chili powder and 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder.

After the scallops are cooked brush with butter sauce or dip them in the sauce.

Tuscan Garlic Bread (Fettunta) Recipe

In our family we are bread lovers. Throughout the years, we make a simple garlic bread that was the traditional style my grandmother made while I was growing up. As a child I still can remember the aroma of her homemade dense bread baking, as it sat a few days or got older (if there was any left) she would make this mouth watering garlic bread that was perfect with any stew or sauce based meal. Actually I can eat a whole plate of this bread without anything else just as a snack. That's a real bread lover! Grandma passed away in 1976 on October 4th. R.I.P. grandma Victoria. Your memory always lives on in your cooking recipes.

Tuscan Garlic Bread (Fettunta) Recipe

4 slices day old bread or more depending on family or guest size
2 large fresh cloves of garlic
Extra virgin olive oil first cold pressed (good grade)
Freshly cracked black pepper
Dried Oregano
Grating cheese
Sea salt

The quality of the oil is a must with this recipe.  Toast the bread under the broiler on both sides to light brown in color.  While still warm and crisp, rub garlic cloves all over both sides of the bread. Sprinkle with freshly cracked black pepper and salt. Drizzle with olive oil all over the slices and sprinkle with oregano and grating cheese. Serve immediately. Best tasting while still warm and oil hasn't soaked through the bread.
See below link:
Homemade Basic Italian Bread or Rolls Recipe +claudia lamascolo  Author

Roasted Eggplant Dip Recipe

Roasted Eggplant, garlic, some herbs and spices bring out the great flavors in this dip. Served with Parmesan flavored pita chips, crackers or spread on garlic bread is going to absolutely wow your guests if there's any left! 

Roasted Eggplant Dip Recipe

2 large eggplants
2 cleaned fresh cloves of garlic
1 lemon juiced
3 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2/3 cups Tahini (sesame paste)
1/2 cup fresh Italian minced parsley
1/2 teaspoon or more to taste of sea salt and freshly cracked pepper

Heat oven to 450 degrees. On a large baking sheet pierce the eggplants with a fork all over.
Roast until softened around 25 minutes. Cool.
Once it's cooled off, peel the eggplant, remove the stems and toss away.
Place everything in the food processor except the parsley and pulse a few times. I like mine a little chunkier. Fold in the parsley.

Serve with Parmesan flavored pita chips, bread points or assorted vegetables.
+claudia lamascolo  Author

Chicken, Peppers, Eggplant, Stir Fry Recipe

A great one pan Italian kind of stir fry over rice. Sauteed chicken, eggplant, peppers with a splash of white wine. Over rice this makes the perfect accompaniment.  A few sliced tomatoes on the side, a healthy dish all the way around.

That's what I like about a saute, you can really add whatever you like. The eggplant is a really nice touch with the peppers and chicken. I will give you even more suggestions to add below

Chicken, Peppers, Eggplant, Stir Fry Recipe

3 boneless chicken breasts sliced medallion style 
2 peppers any color I used yellow, sliced
1 small eggplant cleaned, skinned and cubed
1/4 cup Pinot Grigio
3 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4  teaspoon cayenne pepper
salt, pepper to taste
(optional 1/2 teaspoon each chili powder and cumin for more flavor)

In a large fry pan add the oil and sliced chicken breast pieces, add the garlic, salt, pepper to taste and cayenne pepper. Fry on both sides for around 4 to 5 minutes. Add the wine, peppers, cubed eggplant, minced garlic and stir fry until vegetables are soft but still a little firm around 5-7 minutes. Add more wine,water or chicken stock, if it starts to get dry if you like the vegetables softer.

Other suggestions to add:
Mushrooms, sliced onions, sliced black olives, zucchini cubed, grape tomatoes, hot sliced peppers, Italian sausage sliced or pepperoni.

Optional: Boil your favorite pasta drain, place this stir fry and top and lots of grating cheese. Another great meal! Enjoy.

+claudia lamascolo 

Quick Blueberry Semi Homemade Crepe Recipe

Seriously the easiest recipe I ever threw together. Semi homemade. The batter is easy! Just mix it all together and using a non stick pan it's a snap! The filling is quick and easy too. Just wait until you see how easy this is to impress your family. These even can be made ahead of time and frozen for later stacked between wax paper. Thaw and fill! That's it. Just remember once the crepes are made the skies the limit with your creativeness. Make a lot of them and fill with what you like I have some more tips below!

Simple Crepe Recipe:
(make these first)

1 1/2 cups milk
2 eggs
1 cup flour
1 tablespoon oil
2 1/2 tablespoons sugar

Mix eggs milk oil and sugar in a bowl.  Add the flour using a whisk until well combined.
Heat your non stick pan, sprayed with pam. Place 1/4 cup batter in the pan, swirl around. Cook until crepe is dry on top around 1 1/2 minutes or so, then flip. Stack between wax paper. Note: If your not ready to use them freeze them in a zip lock bag, flat in the freezer. Thaw first before filling.

 Blueberry Filling:

1 can blueberries in juice or pie filling
1 box french vanilla instant pudding to package instructions or use snack pack vanilla pudding already made
Fill crepes with berries, then pudding on top and top with canned whipped cream.

Don't like Blueberries?

Try these combinations:

Chocolate Banana Crepe
1 box instant chocolate pudding to package instructions or use snack pack already prepared
1 tablespoon nutella
whipped cream

Spread nutella on crepe fill with pudding, add sliced banana. Top with whipped cream

Strawberries and Cream:

cleaned and hulled sliced strawberries
1 box instant vanilla pudding to package instructions
whipped cream

Mix strawberries into the pudding leaving some out for garnish. Fill crepe garnish with whipped cream.

Tropical Crepe:

mandarin oranges
1 box instant coconut cream pudding
1 sliced kiwi
strawberries sliced
crushed pineapple drained

Place some of each fruit medley on the crepe, spread with coconut cream pudding. Roll and top with whipped cream. Sprinkle with coconut

+claudia lamascolo author

Cheesy Black Bean and Rice Casserole Recipe

Black beans, pinto beans and blend of spices with jasmine rice are layered into this delicious casserole, the melted cheese just makes this the perfect meal for Cinco De Mayo or any outing you may need to feed many people for. If they love a Mexican flair to their foods, this is it, look no more!

Flour tortilla is used to layer this hearty casserole dish.

This has two layers of meat, beans and rice
 Cheesy Black Bean and Rice Casserole Recipe

2 cups cooked jasmine rice ( I used boil in the bag drained) set aside
1 small can diced tomatoes with chiles
1 large can enchilada sauce
1 can pinto beans with sauce
1 can black beans drained and rinsed
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
salt, pepper to taste
dash of cayenne pepper for heat if you like it
3 or 4 cups shredded Mexican blended cheese
10 to 14 flour tortilla large

1 pound ground beef, chicken, turkey or shredded steak

In a large fry pan, saute the meat of choice with 1 tablespoon olive oil, add all the spices. After the meat is browned, add the tomatoes, beans and simmer.

In a large deep 13x9 pan or deep dish lasagna pan, line the bottom with flour tortilla. Place the cooked rice on the bottom, sprinkle generously with shredded cheese, top with half the meat mixture. Place another layer of tortilla, then meat mixture more cheese. End with flour tortilla, the rest of the cheese. Pour the enchilada sauce on top of the cheese and bake at 350 until hot bubbly and the cheese starts to brown on top. That's it. Easy and quick. Every one will love it!

Garnish suggestions:

sliced avocado with lime juice
sour cream
chopped olives
chopped jalapeno's
shredded lettuce
chopped tomatoes
diced onions

+claudia lamascolo  Author

Boozy Adult Popsicle Recipes

I loved Popsicle's as a little girl and now as an Adult. I love to make all kinds of flavors, adding some alcohol makes these for Adults only. You can always substitute juice like pineapple, orange, apple or grape to make them a non alcohol Popsicle. After all these years I finally invested in a Popsicle mold ( I would use ice cube trays and toothpicks) and boy do I ever love my new toy.  It's just the beginning of a wonderful summer of fun and experimenting to keep cool!   Here are some suggestions below on flavor combinations and check out the video for more instructions.

Basic Recipe:
3 cups Strawberries (fruit must be cut up) pureed in a food processor (other suggestions would be pineapple, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, peaches, bananas or kiwi)
1/2 cup coconut rum
1/2 cup pina colada mix or cream of coconut (use all pineapple juice for non alcohol.)
8 cup Popsicle molds with sticks

Blend the fruit of choice in a food processor or high powered blender add the rum and colada mix, you can substitute apple juice, grape juice or anything else you like in it place. Strain in a fine mesh sieve. 

Other sugggestion combinations:

Add  any two kinds of fruits together, bananas, strawberries, berries, kiwi, pineapple, etc.
1/2 cup apple juice, grape juice, pineapple juice or orange juice
1/2 cup of liqueur of choice, Vodka, Rum, Flavored Vodka's or flavored Rum. Proceed with above instructions.

Peach Bellini:
3 cups sliced peaches 
1/2 cup peach schnapps or orange juice
1/2 cup white wine preferably Pino Grigio

Berry Cabernet:
3 cups berries raspberry, blackberry or blueberry
1/2 cup Cabernet
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 cup juice like grape or apple

Margarita Pops:
1/2 cup fine sugar
zest of 1 lime
6 chopped passion fruit or kiwi, mango, papaya, pineapple
1/3 cup lime juice
1 cup water
3 tablespoons Tequila
1 tablespoons Cointreau

In a saucepan bring sugar, water and lime zest to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes to dissolve sugar. Stir in remaining ingredients. Add to pop molds, if using passion fruit when it's half way frozen stir to mix the seeds evenly.

Chocolate Rum Popsicle
1 cup heavy cream
2 cups milk
1/2 cup white rum
2 egg yolks
1 cup chocolate chopped (good grade like Lindt)
1/4 cup fine sugar

Bring the milk and heavy cream to a boil. Remove from heat and cool for 5 minutes.
Place the chocolate in a glass bowl and pour the milk over the top. Stir until melted. Add the rum. Whisk the eggs and sugar in a bowl and then blend with chocolate mixture.  Cover with plastic wrap and place in the freezer for around 2 hours. Place in an ice cream maker. Churn around 20 minutes. Pour into the pop molds and insert sticks. Freeze for around 24 hours before removing.

+claudia lamascolo  Author

Chicken Escarole Soup with Tortellini Recipe

There is nothing more comforting or that hits the spot on a cold damp evening or when your not feeling 100% than homemade soup. Here is my favorite.  This is an easy recipe, trust me it doesn't have to look great, it will taste great!

Chicken Escarole Soup with Tortellini Recipe
2 heads of escarole boiled in salt water and drained, rinsed then chopped into small pieces

4 chicken legs or 3 chicken breasts
1 cup sliced carrots
4 stalks celery
1 - 28 ounce can diced tomatoes
salt, pepper, to taste
3 whole cloves garlic or 1 small diced onion ( I do not eat onions, as I have allergies to them) you can use both
2 teaspoons garlic powder
4 tablespoons fresh or dried parsley
1/2 pound cheese tortellini
1/2 cup orzo pasta

 Garnish topping:
Grating cheese, pecorino romano.

 Fill a 5 quart saucepan with water,  leaving around 4 inches of space from the top of the pan making sure you have room for all your ingredients.
Add the chicken, salt, pepper, a little cayenne if you like heat, some fresh parsley, garlic powder and 3 whole garlic cloves and boil at least 1 hour to make a rich broth, scooping off the foam that it creates, sometimes it takes longer. Remove the chicken and the garlic from the pot and after its cooled off remove the meat off the bone, you can smash the garlic and put it back in or throw it away if you don't like too much garlic taste.

Add the boneless chicken,  carrots, celery, spices, tomatoes and escarole, boil simmering for around 1 hour.
In a small sauce pot boil the tortellini and orzo in salt water, cooking al dente around 9 minutes. Drain and add to the soup pot. Stir.

Serve soup with grating cheese on top.

+claudia lamascolo  Author

Crockpot Chicken Tequila Black Bean Tortilla Recipe

All year long I love to make combinations of fillings for flour or corn tortilla's to fill with everyone's favorites. I really love the freshness you can create with these delicious wraps. Being I work all day, this is a perfect filling to throw together the night before and cook while I am gone. Coming home to a great meal with these overly stuffed tortilla's with a variety of toppings, really helps out allot and feeds many without costing a small fortune. Easy, quick and delicious, my kind of meal.

Crockpot Chicken Tequila Black Bean Tortilla Recipe:

1 lb chicken breasts boneless and skinned leave whole
1 can rinsed black beans
1/4 cup Tequila or beer or bourbon
1/2 cup corn
1- 12 ounce can tomatoes with mild green chilies drained
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons olive oil
12 to 15 corn or flour tortilla shells
1 cup cooked rice

Spray the crockpot with cooking spray oil.  Stir the spices with 1 tablespoon of the oil and rub the chicken breasts with it. Add the chicken to the crock pot with liqueur of choice and lime juice and cook on high for 4 to 6 hours. Add the beans, tomatoes with chilies, corn and oil mixing together. Cook until chicken can pull apart easy around 1 1/2 more hours depending on the thickness. Pull the chicken apart with two forks. Stir in cooked rice.  Fill taco shells with chicken, beans and rice mixture mixture. Top with suggestions below.

Optional garnish and toppings: Shredded lettuce, mounds of shredded sharp cheddar or Mexican style cheese, diced tomatoes, sour cream, black olives, jalapeno's pepper rings, chopped avocado and/or hot sauce, enchilada sauce.
+claudia lamascolo  Author

Smore's Chocolate Ice Cream Recipe Video

Well one of the greatest thing about making ice cream is your imagination. This one just hit me one day when I had so much leftover candy. I looked at those kit kats and thought, cookies, chocolate, marshmallows and this ice cream was created! A keeper for us and hope you love it too!

Smore's Chocolate Ice Cream Recipe Video

1 cup whole milk
1/2 cup sugar plus 1 tablespoon I like it a little sweeter
8 oz. good grade bittersweet chocolate broken up fine
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla or more to taste

6 mini kit kat bars broken up or more if you like (use any kind of candy you like)
1 cup mini marshmallows
2 teaspoons mini chocolate chips

Heat the milk until the edges start to bubble. In the meantime put the broken up chocolate in a food processor until almost powdered fine.

 Add the hot milk to the food processor and pulse till smooth. Cool completely and refrigerate for 2 hours.

 Add the heavy cream and vanilla until all blended together. Place into your ice cream maker and churn for 20 minutes to the manufacturer suggestions.

 Add the mini marshmallows, kit kat bars that have been broken up in bits and mini chips.

Place in a freezer container. Freeze for 2 hours before serving.

+claudia lamascolo  author