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Ingredients:
1 lb. whole wheat pasta shells (mini)
3 ears of corn (*Canned corn, well drained is fine too.)
1/2 cup red onion (chopped)
1/4 cup red bell pepper (minced)
1 cup fresh ricotta
1 tsp.sea salt
3 tbsp. olive oil
2 pieces of fresh basil (chopped)
Directions:
1. Remove husks from corn. Brush with a little olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt. On a grill/barbecue, grill ears of corn until a little golden brown. Turn while cooking. (about a total of ten minutes) *Or, open canned corned and drain very well. Grill in skillet for about 3 minutes.  Skip Step 2 if using canned corn.
2. Let corn cool for about 15 minutes and then shuck the corn off the cob.
3. Begin to boil pasta to your desired taste.
4. Drain pasta well. Put pasta in a large bowl. Add corn, red onion, red bell pepper, 3 tbsp. of olive of oil and 1 tsp. of sea salt. Mix well.
5. Pour pasta onto a serving  platter.
6. Place dollops of fresh ricotta on top. Put basil leaves on top.
Optional: Drizzle a little olive oil on top.
Note: Some enjoy this as a cold pasta dish as well as a warm one.

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Directions:

2 1/4 cups dried split peas  (rinsed)
8 cups water
1 large onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
2 medium celery stalks, finely chopped
1/4 tsp. black pepper and spindled sea salt (to your taste)
1 ham bone *optional
3 medium carrots, cut into 1/4-inch slices

Directions:

1 Heat peas and water to boiling in 4-quart pot. Boil uncovered 2 minutes; remove from heat. Cover and let stand 1 hour.
2 Stir in onion, celery, sea salt and black pepper. Add ham bone. Heat to a boil and then reduce heat. Cover and simmer about 1 hour 30 minutes or until peas are tender.
3 Remove ham bone; remove ham from bone. Trim excess fat from ham; cut ham into 1/2-inch pieces. (*ham bone is optional)
4 Stir ham and carrots into soup. Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer about 30 minutes or until carrots are tender and soup is desired consistency.

*Put a dollop of sour cream on top.

*You can make split pea soup without the ham bone.

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Ingredients:

2 large green zucchini

1 large yellow zucchini

2 large carrots

2 bulbs of garlic

1 1/2 cups vegetable stock

olive oil

1 whole lemon

sea salt and black pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

  1. Cut zucchini and carrots into 1/4 inch circles.
  2. Peel garlic bulbs and separate into cloves.
  3. Get a large baking pan. Coat the bottom of the pan with olive oil. (about 1 tbsp.)
  4. Put zucchini, carrots and garlic in pan. Drizzle olive oil (another tbsp) on top.
  5. Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper. (to your liking) Mix all together.
  6. Pour vegetable stock into pan.
  7. Bake in oven for about 40 minutes. Stir occasionally.
  8. Vegetables should be tender and easy to pick up with a fork. When done, remove from oven and squeeze a whole lemon on top.   *Makes a great side dish or meal.

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Tomato and Cucumber Salad

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Ingredients:
3 large vine tomatoes (Cut into eighths)
2 cucumbers (cut into 1/4 in. slices)
1 red onion (sliced
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. dry oregano
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
Direction:
1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Mix well.
Serve cold.

New Year’s Day Penne Pomodoro

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Ingredients:
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic (chopped))
1 medium onion (diced)
3 ripe large tomatoes (chopped)
1/4 cup basil leaves (chopped)
1 lb. pasta (cooked)
parmesan cheese
sea salt
Directions:
*You will add your cooked pasta to this tasty sauce.
1. Heat a skillet over medium high heat. Add olive oil.
2. Add the onion and garlic, and cook for 2 minutes.
3. Add tomatoes and cook, tossing, for 5-7 minutes, until they have broken down.
4. Add a pinch of sea salt.
5. Add cooked pasta to tomato sauce skillet. Add basil and toss together.
6. Finish with an extra drizzle of olive oil and parmesan cheese.
*Double the recipe, for those who like extra sauce.

Honey Walnut Figs

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Ingredients:
1 lb. dried figs
1 cup walnuts (chopped)
honey (I use Golden Blossom.)
Directions:
1. Take each fig and press thumb down into the middle.

2. Brush each fig with a little honey.

3. Put a few chopped walnut pieces on top. Push them down into the fig.

4. Let sit for an hour at room temperature and then serve.

Mussels and Avocado Salad

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Ingredients:

3 lbs. mussels

3 avocados (sliced)

1/2 cup red onion (sliced)

1 bulb of garlic (roasted)

1/4 cup olive oil

sea salt and black pepper

Directions:

  1. In a large pot, put 1 cup of water. Add cleaned mussels and cook on a low heat. (about 8 minutes) You want the mussels to open and cook.
  2. Drain well. Let cool a few minutes and then remove mussels from shells.
  3. Slice avocados to bite size pieces.
  4. Slice red onion.
  5. Put all ingredients in a serving bowl. Cover and refrigerate.
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Take a piece of aluminum foil. Put garlic bulb on top. Drizzle a tbsp of olive oil on top of bulb. Wrap up and cook in oven for about 30 minutes.
  7. Let cool and remove garlic from bulb.
  8. In a food processor, put garlic, 1/4 cup olive oil and a pinch of sea salt and black pepper. Pulsate for 20 seconds.
  9. Pour dressing over mussels and serve.

New Year’s Shrimp and Scallop Pizza

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Ingredients:
Focaccia or Pizza Bread
1/2 lb. shrimp (uncooked)
1/2 lb. bay scallops (uncooked)
3 large red onions (sliced)
1 large vidalia onion (sliced)
2 cups fresh arugula
1 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
3 tbsp. balsamic oil
2 tsp. white sugar
olive oil
Directions:
1. In a skillet, put 1 tbsp. olive oil. Cook shrimp and scallops. Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper. Turn shrimp and scallops while cooking. Should take no more than 5 minutes to cook. Set to the side.
2. In a skillet, put 2 tbsp. of olive oil. Cook sliced onions. Stir frequently. When they are tender, add balsamic vinegar and sugar. Stir together. Cook an additional 2 minutes. Set onions to the side. (If it’s to oily, drain some of the excess.)
3.Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush a little olive oil of focaccia/pizza bread. Place on a baking sheet and place in oven, just for about 5 minutes. You want the bread to begin to get crisp.
4. Remove bread from oven. Spread cooked onions evenly on top Scatter fresh arugula on top. Place cooked shrimp and scallops evenly on top. (If the scallops are large, you can cut them into pieces.)
5.Return to the oven for about 6-8 minutes.
*Serve hot and crispy.

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Ingredients:
1 dozen stemmed strawberries
1/2 cup dark chocolate (chopped) (milk chocolate if you want)
1/2 cup white chocolate (chopped)
Directions:
1. Rinse strawberries in cold water. Let thoroughly dry on paper towels. Leave 2 inches of the stem on the strawberry.
2. Melt chocolate and white chocolate separately. Once melted dip strawberries.
3. Let strawberries dry on wax paper and then refrigerate.
* If you have food coloring, you can add a few drops to melted white chocolate for extra designs on the strawberries.