Sweet Potato Pudding Recipe

Monday, February 28, 2011

2 1/2 cups baked sweet potatoes peeled, boiled and mashed ( you can use canned if preferred)
1/2 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
4 large eggs
1/3 cup half and half or evaporated milk
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon corn syrup, preferably dark
4 tablespoon light or dark rum
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
Praline topping, recipe follows

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 1 1/2-quart baking dish.
With an electric mixer, beat together all the pudding ingredients until smooth and light. Pour the pudding into the baking dish. Transfer to the oven and bake for 25 minutes.
Sprinkle the praline mixture over the pudding and bake for an additional 20 to 25 minutes, until the pudding is set and slightly puffed.  Last 10 minutes add the cherries and marshmallows if desired. Splash with more rum if desired. The top will sink as the pudding cools. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Praline Topping:
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
 Optional(more dark rum to drizzle over the top when cooked)
Optional Maraschino Cherries and Minature marshmallows ( place marshmallows around edge last 10 minutes) for holiday decorating.
In a small bowl, combine the ingredients and reserve to use as topping for the sweet potato pudding.

White Bean and Chicken Marsala Soup

Sunday, February 27, 2011
White Bean and Chicken Marsala Soup is a comforting delicious Italian soup. It has white beans and lots of herbs with a bit of tomato and broth along with chicken.


Upstate NY Italian Sauce or Gravy? Debate

Friday, February 25, 2011

There is always a debate on what this is called. sauce, gravy? Is there a right and wrong?

This is a pin for later meatballs, sauces, sugo simmering in a pot for pasta

collage of meat italian Sunday Sauce with meatballs, sausage and braciole simmering in pots


Irish Creme Pie

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Irish Creme Pie


Creamy Orzo Herb and Parmesan

Monday, February 21, 2011

I double this recipe......

Creamy Orzo Herb and Parmesan

1 tablespoon butter
1 cup orzo
1 1/4 cups chicken broth
1 1/4 cups water
1/4 cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1/4 teaspoon minced garlic or powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper,( cayenne optional)
4 teaspoons pine nuts, toasted (I melt a teaspoon of butter in a small glass bowl and add the pine nuts for around two minutes till browned)

Heat butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add orzo, and cook 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in broth and water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until liquid is absorbed and orzo is done (about 15 minutes). Remove from heat; stir in cheese, basil, salt, and pepper. Sprinkle with the pine nuts. Serve immediately

How To Roast a Perfect Italian Style Chicken with Tips

Sunday, February 20, 2011
Here are some great instructions on how to roast a chicken perfectly and some tips!

delicious juicy roasted chicken on a broiler pan perfectly cooked


Italian Broccoli Cheese Cornbread

Thursday, February 17, 2011

We just love this quick and easy herb cornbread.. Italian herbs and spices that will be addicting with any  chili especially Italian Chili, also any barbecue meal or even a Lemon Chicken. Great to bring to picnics and you soon will add to your list to make as a regular.

4 eggs
1/2 cup butter or margarine, melted
1/4 teaspoon salt, pepper, cayenne
1 package or box corn bread/muffin mix( approx amount on box is 6 or 8 oz sizes) I have used both and works out fine
3 fresh chopped florets of broccoli chopped in small pieces and microwaved in water for 10 minutes or use a (10 ounce) package frozen chopped broccoli)
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1/2 teaspoon each, garlic powder, oregano, basil, parsley,

In a bowl, combine eggs, butter and salt. Stir in corn bread mix just until blended. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Pour into a greased 11-in. x 7-in. x 2-in. baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees F for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean, do not over cook. Slice and serve warm. Goes great with Italian Chili

MOM'S Old Fashioned Cinnamon Raisin Oatmeal Cookies and a little History on our Family

Wednesday, February 16, 2011
I have to tell you something about Italian recipes that has always had me thinking. Mom never use to measure anything. For those of you looking for authentic recipes, stop looking.  just remember, most of them come from those who still live among us, unfortunately all of our family has long since past that came from Italy that learned from their mom's and grandma's. When they lived in those Italian Regions they grew up with their versions of recipes. My parents were both born here in the early 1900's. Mom being born in America learned  her families way of cooking, Italian, and from the Region, Bari. She got her cooking expertise from her mom that lived in Bari, then later on, her motherinlaw, that came from Rome, Italy .No cookbooks back then, no two cooked alike. To this day, I cherished her penmanship she left behind although just ingredients no amount. It was all assumed measurements. The Region she was born in Italy, Bari, was very different than my grandmother who lived in Rome, Italy.  Aunts from Calabria, and many many other Regions all made things differently. For instance we have cousins that put raisins in their meatballs, mom put boiled eggs in lasagna. Was it wrong? No, not wrong, just different style,  to the kids that grew up in those different households and families that grew those additions were the only way to eat these foods and nothing else compares to mom's. We continue to recreate what their legacy and traditions were, however, it's a bit impossible to duplicate anything the same, just give you guide lines of what we were used and the close similarity of what we can reproduce since the creator isn't here critique it. There is no Authentic anything,  it is certainly an opinion of the original origin here. Years change what was once first created adapted and perfected. I can't possibly get the fresh chickens, eggs and meat they had, mom was a butcher too, so the meat was 100% better tasting back then so we can't produce the same ingredient in some cases either, that taste can't be reproduced without them.   I can't be an authority on Italian cooking by Authenticity, I didn't live there or that time period. I just the love her simplicity of the recipes that once was created, we will try and recreate as close as possible, adapt and hope to make a recipe close to the same.. my mom made great cookies, cakes, and fabulous recipes of foods for dinners, that never got written down...here on this site you will find my best guess and the closest resemblance of my dearest memories of her, that has long since past.. I have never tried to suggest its exactly like  hers, similar, as I could never replace the original which is long gone and by far in my eyes the best!
So enough about my feelings on mom's, grandma's, and originality, she lives on through her teachings and cooking, it's as  close to what some remember as we can get here, keep looking its out there somewhere, and kept experimenting you'll get there~ for the love of family and cooking!... Thanks for reading~
Her cookie recipe:

Mom use to tell me the trick was to start out soaking the raisins in hot water till they plump before adding them. This time I did it, they actually seem to keep the cookies fresh longer, soft and chewy, these were delicious.
A simple easy cookie I always think why not for breakfast it's healthy there's oatmeal in them!
When I was a kid I actually hated raisins, so she cut this batch in half and added chocolate chips to one half and raisins in the other.. if you have picky eaters, like I was, you won't be sorry these are an awesome cookie!

Old Fashion Cinnamon Raisin Oatmeal Cookies
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/3 cup molasses
2 eggs
2 cups quick-cooking oats
1 2/3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup raisins( place in a bowl with hot water for around 1/2 hour then drain optional)
or 1 cup chocolate chips
Heat oven to 375°F. In large bowl, stir together sugar, butter, molasses and eggs. Stir in remaining ingredients except raisins until well blended. This is where you can split the batter into two bowls, add chocolate chips to one and raisins to the other. Stir in preferred blend. Even split I add a cup of each.
Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls about 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake 9 to 10 minutes or just until set. Cool 1 minute; remove from cookie sheets.

Mom's Veal Parmigiana

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

2 cups Italian bread crumbs
1/2 cup Romano grating cheese
1 cup flour add 1/2 teaspoon each to the flour, oregano, parsley, basil, garlic powder, pepper
4 eggs
1 pound of Veal pound 1/8 inch thick
1/4 cup oil
Marinara Sauce
2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup Romano grating cheese
Combine bread crumbs, cheese, 1/2 teaspoon salt,  some freshly ground pepper and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Put flour, breadcrumbs and eggs in three separate dishes. Dredge cutlets in flour, dip in egg, then breadcrumbs to coat. Let sit for around 1/2 hour. Heat oil in large skillet and fry cutlets until golden. Drain on paper towels.
Preheat oven to 375.
Spread marinara sauce in a 13x9 pan. Place a single layer of cutlets on top. Top with sauce, sprinkle with mozzarella and grating cheese. Cover with foil. Bake until the cheese melts then becomes browned.

Valentine's Day Heart Easy Dessert

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Here is an easy treat!

Bake a cake in a heart shaped pan. Cool.
Heat some strawberry jam enough to cover the top of the cake and
Dip strawberries in.

 warm strawberry jam in the microwave around 10 seconds

Arrange on cake. Serve with whipped cream


Shrimp Teriyaki and Rice with Pea's and Carrots

Saturday, February 12, 2011

3 pounds of shrimp cleaned deveined with tails marinade below: ( you can substitute chicken, beef or pork)
1 cup soy sauce
1 cup water
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 clove of minced garlic
Mix this all together and this is the perfect marinade!~
Place shrimp and marinade at least 30. Grill for 3 to 4 minutes on high each side either outside or on a indoor grill.

Rice Recipe:
Boil 1 1/2 cups of rice of choice to package directions.
In a large fry pan, heat 3 tablespoons of butter and 2 cloves of minced garlic saute till soft. Scramble two beaten eggs in the butter and garlic.  In a small saucepan or microwave,  par boil 1/2 cup of julienne style carrots and 1 cup of frozen pea's till  they still have a bite to them, drain well. Add to the butter, garlic and egg mixture in  the frypan. Add the cooked rice. Mix 1/4 soy sauce and 1/2 cup of water together add to the pan, heat till warm.
Place rice in a large dish, add shrimp on top and serve.

Valentine Day Cake Recipe, Dad's Favorite Coconut Jam Filled

Friday, February 11, 2011

In Honor of my Late Dad Carmen Colenzo, his favorite cake was always Coconut Jam Filled Scratch Cake, so this one's for you daddy! I use to make these all the time for him. My mom, my Margaret use to make the cake from scratch, fill this cake with whatever jam she had in the house, add the coconut on top and this became his all time favorite, try it you'll soon see why!

*Cupcakes are also a great alternative if you don't have a heart pan

Slice off the tops with a sharp knife, set aside and sprinkle with 10x sugar. Fill your top of the cake with red  jam, replace the sugared top. Almost like a famous cookie knockoff for Valentines Day  just using cake!

Happy Valentines Daddy, I will always miss and love you! 1912-1995 RIP

1 Heart Shaped Cake Pan greased
White Cake Mix or Homemade Cake see below
1 jar Strawberry Preserves or Red Raspberry Jam
1 cup of coconut put through the food processor till fine

Bake cake mix as directed or follow cake recipe below. See above for cutting layer off the top of the cake, using a cookie cutter, cut the middle of the top layer into a heart. Set aside. Sprinkle cooled cake with confectionery sugar. Fill cake layer with jam, sprinkle with coconut careful not to fill the middle hole with the coconut to cover the jam in the center. Replace the sugared top on the cake.

Homemade Cake Recipe Click Here > Grandma's Scratch Cake

*For those of you without Heart Shaped Pans use cupcake tins, slice off the tops same as the cake, fill with favorite jam, coconut. Use a heart shape small cookie cutter for the centers. Sprinkle the cut off heart centered tops with confectionary sugar, place on top of the cupcake and there you have it! Viola!

Carmen Colenzo 1912-1995 RIP

Fried Calamari, Fresh Marinara and Pasta

Thursday, February 10, 2011

A very nice meal for the Calamari lover...fresh fried Calamari with Marinara fresh sauce over pasta,  a great combination sure to please!

You will need to make the above highlighted recipes:
 1 batch of  Fried Calamari click on Calamari for recipe
 1 batch of Fresh Marinara click on Marinara for recipe
Your favorite pasta boiled in salted water, we just love Angel Hair or Linguine

Place cooked pasta on a plate, top with fresh marinara sauce, surrounded by freshly fried Calamari, top with lots of freshly grated Romano cheese.
Serve with garlic knots and  hearts of romaine salad.

Strawberry Blueberry Orange Heart Scones

Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Scones are an all time comfort breakfast food and also great during tea time. I love the buttery biscuit stuffed with fruits. A hint of sweetness make them irresistible. The dough is so versatile, you can cut it into any shape you like. Here is a great Valentine shape for the occasion.


Grilled Lemon Chicken and Almondine Rice Marsala

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

1‑1/2 pounds cubed Chicken breasts
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano or 2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Optional Vegetables:
1 red or yellow bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces,1 small zucchini, cut into 1-inch pieces ,1 yellow squash, cut into 1-inch pieces,8 ounces large fresh whole mushrooms, wiped clean and stems trimmed

Place Chicken in large resealable food storage bag. Combine oil, juice, garlic, chopped oregano, salt and black pepper in glass measuring cup; pour over chicken in bag. Close bag securely; turn to coat. Marinate in refrigerator 4 hours, turning once or overnight.

Drain Chicken, reserving marinade. Alternately thread chicken, and whatever vegetables you like
IE bell pepper, zucchini, yellow squash, onion and mushrooms onto 12 (10-inch) metal skewers;  brush both sides with reserved marinade.

Using wooden skewers, soak in cold water 30 minutes to prevent burning.
Place kabobs on grid. Grill, on covered grill, over medium-hot coals 6 minutes. Turn; continue to grill, covered, 5 to 7 minutes for medium or until desired doneness is reached. Serve with rice (see below). Garnish with lemon, if desired. Serve hot.

Rice Almondine Marsala

Panko Crusted Italian Baked Fish with Marinara Sauce and Angel Hair

Monday, February 7, 2011


Curry Chicken Wings

Sunday, February 6, 2011

 12 wings baked, grilled or fried

Salt, pepper, cayenne, curry powder
1/4 cup flour
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, or about 1 tablespoon dried
4 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 1/2 teaspoons curry powder, or to taste
3/4 cup heavy cream
Salt, to taste


Dredge  wings salt,  pinch of cayenne, pinch of curry powder and pepper mixed in flour to coat both sides. Fry till crisp. In a saucepan, add the chicken broth, wine, parsley , garlic, and curry powder. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Cover and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes longer. Stir in cream and add salt, to taste. Heat through. Dip wings in  the sauce.

Want more wing recipes?  Click here

Loaded Twice Baked Potatoes

A great appetizer for any party! An easy side dish for any meal...

Sour Cream
Crumbled Bacon
Shredded REAL Cheddar Cheese
Whipped Cream Cheese
Garlic powder

Microwave the amount of potatoes you need for your party, I microwave 5 potatoes cutting them into 10 halves. After the potatoes are cooked, cut length wise in half and scoop out the centers of each half and place in a large bowl. Brush all potato jackets with olive oil, place on a cookie sheet lined with  parchment paper.  With a hand masher or electric hand blender, blend 1 tablespoon of sour cream per potato and 1 teaspoon per potato of cream cheese adding 1/4 cup milk and whip till creamy leaving a few chunks. Add 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, sprinkle with parsley flakes, mix. Fill each potato jacket and sprinkle tops with shredded  cheddar top with bacon. Bake in the oven till the potato jackets are crispy.
Makes a great side dish when making your favorites wings!
For wing recipes click here...

World Nutella Day with Nutella Melting Moments Gem Cookies

Saturday, February 5, 2011
February 5th is World Nutella Day, brought to you from Ms. Adventures of Italy and Bleeding Expresso . Another favorite of ours made with Nutella, if your a Nut for Nutella, this is a perfect cookie for you. Very delicate flavored cookie, with rich chocolate Nutella and hazelnuts on top.

Very hard to resist not eating the whole batch in one sitting.

Almond and Frangelico give this cookie a perfect flavoring for the batter.

Make sure you use a floured finger to make the well to fill after they're cooled thoroughly.

Wrap in wax paper for around and hour for easier handling of the dough.

1 cup butter or margarine
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon Frangelico

chopped hazelnuts for decorating

Cream butter in a large mixing bowl; gradually add sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Sift in flour and cornstarch, mix well. Add flavorings, blending well. Chill 1 hours.
Shape dough into 1-inch balls and place 3" apart making a well in the center of each cookie with your index finger, to fill when cooled. Bake at 350 till set not brown.
Cool completely cookies are very fragile, spread with Nutella gently onto cookies, add chopped hazelnuts.
World Nutella Day
Check out these other wonderful recipe using Nutella:

 Bread Pudding Nutella 2011 Latest Food Craze
Ricotta Frangelico Nutella Cake
Nutella Hazelnut Truffles
Nutella Mousse Tart
Nutella Ferrero Rocher Hot Cocoa
Nutella Milano Cookies
Nutella Chocolate Banana Crepes
Nutella No Name Cupcakes
Raspberry Nutella Crepe
Nutella Chocolate Chip Bars

Baked Greek Style Chicken Wings

Friday, February 4, 2011

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons honey

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 garlic clove, minced

1/4 teaspoon salt

4 pounds fresh or frozen chicken wingettes, thawed


1/2 cup plain yogurt

1/2 cup chopped peeled cucumber

1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

2 tablespoons snipped fresh dill or 2 teaspoons dill weed

1 garlic clove, peeled

Dash salt

In a large resealable plastic bag, combine the lemon juice, oil, honey, oregano, garlic and salt. Add chicken wings; seal bag and toss to coat. Refrigerate overnight.

In a blender, combine the sauce ingredients; cover and process until smooth. Transfer to a small bowl; cover and refrigerate until serving.

Drain and discard marinade. Place wings on a rack in a greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan. Bake, uncovered, at 400° for 35-40 minutes or until juices run clear, turning once. Serve with cucumber sauce. Yield: about 3 dozen (1 cup sauce).
Want More chicken wing recipes? Click here

Game Day Wing Spectacular!

Italian Style Scallop Potatoes Recipe

Thursday, February 3, 2011
I can't even begin to tell you how delicious these are, but if your a cheese lovers, look out you'll be hooked too!

 Italian Style Scallop Potatoes. Laced with  a blend of cheeses baked topped with buttered bread crumbs

4 to 6 baking potatoes peeled and thinly sliced looking coins
whole milk
all purpose flour
minced garlic
garlic powder
Italian flavored bread crumbs
1 stick butter
extra virgin olive oil
2 cups shredded cheddar
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
parsley flakes
salt, pepper, cayenne pepper

In a large 13x9 baking pan, place one stick of butter in the pan place in a 350 degree oven until melted.
Place sliced potatoes in the pan, sprinkle the whole top lightly with flour over potatoes. Add garlic powder, parsley, sprinkle with salt, pepper, and pinch of cayenne pepper. Sprinkle with cheeses evenly over the potatoes. Pour milk into the pan to just cover potatoes. Bake around 1/2 hour on 350. In the mean time mix the breadcrumbs with 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, minced garlic. Sprinkle over the top of potatoes, continue baking until fork goes through potatoes around 1 hour. Let sit for 10 minutes before serving.

Old Fashioned Italian Style Bread Crumbs

Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Don't throw out that leftover stale bread, keep saving it till you have enough to make these delicious Italian Flavored Bread Crumbs. I can remember as a kid, I would open the bread box and a ton of old bread would fall out. Couldn't figure out back then why she saved it all. Then as I got older, I was the one who had to grate it with that old fashioned cheese grater! Took forever....thanks to modern technology we can use the food processor to do this job in no time flat, and make the tastiest bread crumbs for any coated dish..of course you can add more or less to taste. But this is our basic recipe for most any Italian recipe on my site. Enjoy!~

The food processor takes no time at all, finely grind the crumbs or if you like chunkier don]t process as long, and its time to add all the spices.

If you keep saving the ends, you will eventually have enough stale bread to make your own. We just keep putting on a cookie sheet leave out for at least a week, it will be very hard. Mom only had a hand grater and still made her own.

Old Fashioned Italian Style Bread Crumbs

Hard Stale leftover bread 1 full loaf of saved Italian bread
cooking spray oil
1 tablespoon salt
3 tablespoons dried parsley flakes
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder (optional)
2 tablespoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons dried basil
1/4 cup grating cheese (optional)

Directions Fast version if you need them quick:
Cut bread into slices or cubes, place on cookie sheet that has been sprayed with cooking oil,put oven on low over 175 degrees until the bread is dry and hard slightly browned.
You can also leave this out for days until the bread is rock hard and stale uncovered or it will get moldy. Keep in a dry place.
Place the hard bread into a food processor and finely grind the bread.
Combine all ingredients in a small bowl, tossing to blend thoroughly.
Store in an airtight container, I use glass mason jars and you can use in any recipe calling for Italian breadcrumbs.
Depending on what you are cooking you can additional spices, rosemary, thyme, sage.

Strawberry, Blueberry, Banana Bread Pudding with Rum Sauce

1 ripe bananas, finely sliced
1 cup sliced strawberries
1 cup blueberries washed
1/2 cup brown sugar, divided
7 slices Italian day old bread
2 cups evaporated milk
4 eggs beaten
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
Bake at 350 till browned and crisp looking. Serve with whipped cream and Strawberry Rum Sauce below.

Strawberry Sauce
2 cups of fresh strawberries
2 tablespoons white rum
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon lime juice

Add everything to a foodprocessor and blend till  chunky but mostly smooth. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.