Dining With Bebe Neuwirth and Chris Calkins

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I’m very excited to be part of “The Actor’s Fund”. When it comes to a few of my favorite things, acting and movies is right up there with cooking. What a thrill it was to dine with Bebe Neuwirth and Chris Calkins most recently.

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Chicken Marsala

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Ingredients:

10 chicken cutlets (each cutlet cut into 3 pieces)

1 cup all purpose flour

5 tbs. butter

2 tbs. olive oil

2 cups sliced mushrooms

3/4  cup marsala wine

1/4  cup cooking sherry

2 tbs. chopped parsley

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. pepper

Directions:

1. In a bowl, add flour, salt, pepper and oregano. Coat all the chicken cutlets in the flour.

2. In a large skillet, melt butter on a medium heat. Add olive oil. Place cutlets in skillet and brown. Turn cutlets over and add mushrooms. Add marsala wine and sherry. Cover skillet and let simmer on a low heat for 10 minutes. Occasionally turn cutlets over. Cutlets should be white on the inside.

Serve Hot. Serves 6 people.

Sweet Fruit Nut Salad

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Ingredients:

1 lb. mixed greens (washed and drained) (mixed greens should be chilled)

1 cup cherry tomatoes

1/2 cup sliced almonds

1/4 cup dried cranberries

1/4 cup dried cherries

1/2 cup candied walnuts (plain walnuts are fine too)

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, place mixed greens.

2. Add all ingredients on top.

Optional: Dressing choice can vary. This type of salad goes best with a little olive oil and a little balsamic vinegar.  Add 4 tbs. of olive and 2 tbs. of balsamic vinegar.

3. Once you decide on your dressing, add to the salad and mix well.

Serves 4 as a salad before dinner.

Homemade Pound Cake

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Ingredients:

2 cups of flour (sifted)

2 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. salt

4 eggs

1 1/2 sticks of butter

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 tbs. vanilla

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

1. Grease a pound cake pan with butter. Sprinkle a little flour into pan. Shake flour around the entire pan and shake out any excess.

2. In a bowl, sift flour, baking powder and salt.

3. In a bowl, with a mixture, mix eggs, sugar and vanilla. Beat until creamy.

4. Slowly add in flour, a little at a time, to the butter mixture. Mix well until all flour is added and batter is creamy.

5. Pour batter into pound cake pan. Take a knife and even out the top.

6. Place in center of a hot oven. Bake for 60-70 minutes. Use a cake tester at 60 minutes to see if dry in the center. If cake tester is wet, return to oven for 10 more minutes. 

Note: Everyone’s oven is different, so it’s always good to check on cake occasionally.

 

John Contratti and Julianne Moore at “21”

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After all the exciting things that have been happening after cooking on television, I was more than happy to get involved with many wonderful organizations. Through these charities, I get to meet some of my favorites actors and actresses. Here I am with the lovely Julianne Moore after our lunch together at the “21 Club”.

Cannoli

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Ingredients:

1 (16 oz.) container of fresh ricotta cheese

2 (8oz.) pkg. cream cheese

1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients with an electric mixer. Mix until creamy and smooth.

2. Fill a pastry bag with cannoli cream. Fill each end of the cannoli shell.

Optional: You can dip each end in choclate morsels.

Cannoli filling fills about a dozen large shells or about 18-20 mini shells.