Mom's Easter Coconut Macaroon Cookies

Friday, March 29, 2013

There are many recipes for these cookies. Easter Coconut Macaroon Cookies are a cookie favorite that mom use to make every year for Easter. Some folks use condensed milk, we she never did. I have tried some of the other recipes along the way and always come back to this one. When I was a little girl, mom would make these as a treat at Easter.

Mom's Easter Coconut Macaroon Cookies


Easter Pie with Basket Cheese and Meat Recipe

Sunday, March 24, 2013

A old time favorite in Italian homes on Easter morning. This one was cooked without a double crust, Easter Pie is usually double crusted depending on what you prefer I love crispy cheese so I leave mine open to brown. I also used a store bought crust in a hurry.

I wanted to show you how packed it the inside with all this amazing cheeses.

The meats, eggs and basket cheese makes this one a unique pie on Easter Sunday.

2 cups chopped prosciutto

2 cups sliced Italian hot sausage

1/2 cup pepperoni chopped

1 cup shredded Mozzarella

1/2 cup Provolone or Fontina

2 tablespoons grating cheese

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

4 hard boiled eggs cut in chunks

1 cup cubed Basket cheese

1 cup Ricotta

3 raw eggs

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

salt and pepper to taste

pinch of cayenne optional

1 homemade recipe for double crust see below or store bought dough found in the frozen food section of the grocery store.

Mix all meats with all the cheeses, boiled eggs and herbs, seasonings in a large bowl. Put raw eggs, ricotta, garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste in the blender for around 1 minutes. Combine this with everything else in the large bowl. This usually is made with a top and bottom crust. Use a deep dish pie pan or cake pan. Fit the dough on the bottom and up the sides. Pour the filling into the dough, top with another piece of dough. Press edges together. You will want to poke holes in the top crust. Brush crust with a beaten egg yolk and bake at 400 degrees until pie is deeply browned. Around 50 minutes.

Crust Recipe: (When you have the time)

2 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/3 cup lard, shortening or oil

1/2 cup water

1 beaten egg and 1 egg yolk for egg wash

pinch of salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Mix everything together except egg yolk. Make a smooth dough. Roll out for bottom and top crusts or two bottom pie crusts. Proceed with above instructions.


Chicken Cordon Bleu Sliders Recipe

Friday, March 22, 2013
 Hard to call this a recipe. No brainer here. I was so amazed when I served them, all the family and guests thought these were their new found favorite sandwich. Nothing really special, simple little bites ended up being the favorite addition to our assorted pick foods!
You will need:
Swiss cheese slices
Ham slicds
Slider buns
Salad dresssing of choice

Place the cooked small chicken bites on the slider bun. Add the ham and swiss cheese. Broil on high until the cheese melts. Great with ranch, blue cheese or your favorite dressing.

For more idea's on these appetizer style foods see below:

Superbowl Appetizers
Simple Crostini
Open Faced Reuban Sandwich
Jack Daniels Beef Sliders


Open Faced Reuben Appetizer

Sunday, March 17, 2013
Open face Reuben appetizers are perfect for St. Patrick's Day!
We are huge Reuben fans, love them any time of year somehow they do taste better when we celebrate and eat them on St.. Patrick's Day. It's  a darn good excuse to make them, but they are fabulous all year round! See a list of all St. Patrick's Day recipes at the end of this post.

Open Faced Reuben Appetizer


Chili Cheesy Baked Potatoes

Friday, March 15, 2013
I just love how versatile potatoes are. Top them with something different and it becomes a whole new recipe and side dish, right?

Well, I had so much leftover Guinness chili left, I thought instead of nachos, let's top a baked potato with chili and see what it's like!

All I can say is this baked potato is the wow factor!

Melted cheese, additional topping on the chili equals the perfect combination of flavors.

Don't take my word for it!

Try them yourself.

You don't have to use my chili recipe, make your favorite.

Don't get tired of those leftovers, repurpose them, what a great side dish!

this is a chili topped baked potatoes loaded with shredded cheeses, olives, sour cream and chopped tomatoes


Quick Easy Artisan Rye Bread Recipe

Thursday, March 7, 2013
Homemade bread is always the best taste. Even if it isn't the prettiest shape,

it will still taste better than store bought! Rye bread has always been a favorite we make around St. Patricks Day for making one of the most famous sandwich, thie Reuben.

This is an easy rye bread perfect for your Corn beef delicious Reuben Sandwich or also great with Corn beef and cabbage dinner you may love to make, just to name a few of what this great bread can be an addition to. It really is an easy recipe and worth the time.

If you don't want to make into a loaf, use the dough and make into small rolls.

3 cups water warm to touch
1 1/2 Tablespoon instant yeast
1 1/2 Tablespoon salt
1 1/2 Tablespoon Caraway seeds
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 cup rye flour
5 1/2 cups all purpose flour.
egg white beaten with 1 tablespoon water

Mix the water with yeast to dissolve, add caraway seeds, salt and oil into a heavy duty mixer bowl using a dough hook ( you can also mix by hand  and stir until dissolved),  Add all dry ingredients to the bowl using the mixer and dough hook blend together for around 2 minutes. Cover the dough and let rise around 2 hours. You can use this now punch it down and rise again making into shapes and rising until double.
Place on a parchment lined cake pan for rounds, or parchment lined cookie sheet and shape into loaves or what ever you like. Brush with egg white wash.
Bake in preheated oven @ 400 degree hot oven until brown on top around 40 minutes. Cool before slicing. Refrigerate for 2 weeks using when needed. 

Salmon with Cream Sauce over Penne Pasta and Spinach Recipe

Tuesday, March 5, 2013
Penne pasta with spinach, a light cream sauce and salmon.
It's the perfect side dish when serving lobster. Even if your not serving lobster this is a delicious salmon dish. A garlic cream sauce with spinach. Of course if your not a spinach lover, try some boiled asparagus or even peas. This cream sauce is versatile and goes great with many vegetables. Don't be shy to substitute your favorite.  This is a perfect way to also use up that leftover salmon any way it's seasoned!

8 ounces penne pasta cooked al dente and drained saving 1/4 cup pasta water
4 oz  grilled salmon seasoned with salt, pepper or with any flavoring your like
1 12 to 16ounce package fresh sauteed spinach
1 1/2 cups half an half or heavy cream
1/4 cup Romano and Parmesan blended cheeses and more for pasta
salt, pepper to taste
2 crushed garlic cloves
olive oil

Optional: Broiled Garlic Lobster Tails  click link

Grill salmon or bake till flakes easily cut into chunks set aside.

Boil pasta, drain saving 1/4 cup of pasta water. Add pasta back to the pot. Add the pasta water, 2 tablespoons olive oil,  1 tablespoon butter, 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste and a few tablespoons of grating cheese, toss all together and set aside keeping warm.

In the meantime while the pasta is cooking saute the spinach.

Saute spinach in 2 tablespoon oil, 1 teaspoon minced garlic, salt and pepper ( you can add a dash of cayenne pepper) saute until wilted and soft around 6 minutes, set aside.

Make the cream sauce in a  small saucepan.  Heat the half an half or heavy cream, bring to a slow boil. Add the 1/4 cup grating cheese, the garlic cloves and 2 tablespoons butter. Simmer for around 6 minutes. Pour over cooked penne pasta in a large pasta bowl. Toss with small chunks of salmon and the sauteed spinach. This is a great side dish or a perfect meal all by itself.

+claudia lamascolo  Author

Boston Cream Pie Cupcake Recipe with Italian Pastry Cream

Sunday, March 3, 2013

I know these have made their way all across the net. I think I waited way to long to make these with my favorite cupcake batter and then pastry filling. Here is my Italian version! Really easy if your in a hurry just use a yellow cake mix and make the cupcakes to the package instructions, but surely make the filling and the ganache topping that will take this over the top!

I am sure you will enjoy these gems anyway you decide to prepare from totally scratch made or semi homemade, they are irresistible!

Cake Batter for Cupcakes:

(seriously if you are not a baker no problem use a white cake mix and add  the whole eggs not just whites and mix and cook to package instructions)

Homemade Cake Batter

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup half and half, heavy cream or evaporated milk
 6 tablespoons butter softened
4 medium or 3 large eggs
1 cup sugar plus 1 teaspoon
1 1/2 teaspoons  pure vanilla extract

1 can chocolate frosting or homemade chocolate ganache see recipe below
1 recipe Italian pastry vanilla custard filling recipe below or make a box of regular cooked or instant pudding.

*See below for filling and topping

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix together flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl. Warm milk and butter on the stove till boiling on low or I did it in the microwave for 1 1/2 minutes. With electric mixer, beat eggs and sugar on high speed until thick and pale, about 5 minutes. Beat in  all the rest of the dry ingredients.
Bring milk and butter to a boil. Add milk mixture to batter using a low speed on the mixer, beat until smooth. Add vanilla. Divide batter among muffin cups, spray generously each tin, then filling each halfway. Bake cupcakes until golden in color about 15 minutes. Let cool in tins a few minutes.  Let cool.

Using a serrated knife, cut each in half horizontally, face top flat side up. Fill each cupcake with  1 tablespoon cream filling on each cupcake bottom. Sandwich with top. Spoon glaze over each, you can serve or refrigerate until ready for serving these. Store in the refrigerator covered. You can freeze cupcakes and assemble later as well.

Recipes from the original recipes for * Boston Cream Pie
Click below for recipes:

Italian Pastry Cream Vanilla Filling 

* Chocolate Ganache Topping

+claudia lamascolo  Author

Herb, Garlic and Olive Oil Pizza Dough or Herb Bread Dough Recipe

Friday, March 1, 2013
I just love experimenting with pizza dough. After I thought about how much I love garlic and herbs on the crusts, I decided to add it to my dough recipe! I was really not surprised what an awesoe asting pizza crust this made. I can't wait to make it again! Everyone loved it!

It really was nice and light I let it rise twice this time.
The crust came out light and crisp like we love it!

All I had to do is add the sauce, cheeses and sprinkle with oregano and viola a herb crusted delicious pizza!  If you don't want to make pizza it made a great loaf of bread too!  Just let rise in a loaf pan and bake at 350 until brown and middle sounds hollow when you tap it!

Basic Herb Dough Recipe
4 1/2 cup flour
2 packages dry yeast dissolved in 2 cups warm water to the touch
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar Optional
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon each fresh herbs chopped rosemary, chopped basil, chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder I used granulated
Dissolved yeast in the warm water let sit for 7 minutes. Add sugar, salt and then oil. Add the herbs mixing together. Using the paddle on a heavy duty mixer add the flour and beat until forms a ball and leaves the sides of the bowl. Dough should be slightly sticky not dry.  ( add a tablespoon of warm water at a time if too dry)
Let rise for 2 hours, punch down rise again. Spread out on pizza pans top with your favorite sauce, cheese and toppings you like.  Bake at 425 degree hot oven until crispy and browned.
See under pizza for making bread instead tip.