Flashback Friday: John Contratti and Joan Rivers


She make look “a little” different today, but here I am with Joan Rivers in Atlantic City, many years ago.


A Special Morning With Katie Couric



It was an interview my students wanted. This morning their dream came true when they  interviewed television journalist and talk show host Katie Couric, via Skype. She had a wonderful rapport with the class while answering all of their questions. It was a wonderful way to start off the week.

Baked Filet Of Sole




4 slices of sole

1/4 cup bread crumbs (optional)

1 cup cherry tomatoes (cut in half)

1 cup chick peas

2 celery stalks (chopped)

1/4 cup red onion chopped

olive oil

balsamic vinegar

salt and pepper


Preheat oven to 375 degrees

1. Brush each slice of sole with olive oil and sprinkle a pinch of salt and pepper on each side. (optional: you can bread the sole with bread crumbs or leave plain)

2. Brush the bottom of a large baking pan with a little olive oil. Add slices of sole and bake for 15-20 minutes. (depending on how thick the slices are)

3. While sole is baking, put tomatoes, chick peas, celery and onions in a bowl. Add 1 tbs. of olive oil and 1 tbs. of balsamic vinegar. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. and mix well. Put to the side.

4. Place filet of sole on a platter. Spoon tomato mixture on top of each slice.

Serve warm.


Flavored Brown Rice



This flavored brown rice makes a great side dish, or it’s a meal all by itself.


2 cups brown rice

1 small onion (chopped)

2 cloves garlic (chopped)

1/2 cup pitted salad olives (Goya)

1  8 oz. can Del Monte Sauce

3 cups water

1/2 cup olive oil

2 cups chicken broth

1 tsp. sea salt

1/2 tsp. oregano

pepper (to taste)


1. In a large pot, brown the onion and garlic in the olive oil. Add sea salt, pepper, oregano and can of sauce. Next, add olives. Simmer for 5 minutes.

2. Add water, chicken broth and rice. The liquids should cover the rice.

3. Cook at a medium flame for about 45 minutes until rice starts to dry and become fluffy.


Chicken With Marinated Artichokes, Tomatoes, Onions and Olives




8 chicken cutlet slices (1/4 in. thick)

2 red vine tomatoes (diced)

1 small sweet onion (chopped)

1 cup pitted green olives (sliced)

1 1/2 cups marinated artichoke hearts (chopped)

2 cloves garlic (chopped)

olive oil

sea salt and black pepper


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

1. On the stove and in a skillet, put 3 tbs. of olive oil and chopped garlic. When garlic is browned, cook chicken cutlet slices 2 minutes on each side until browned. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper.  (Coat the bottom of the baking pan lightly with a little olive oil.) When browned, place chicken cutlets in a baking pan.

2. In a separate skillet, put 2 tbs. of olive oil. Saute onions, tomatoes, olives and artichoke hearts for 3 minutes. Transfer mixture on top of the chicken cutlets. Sprinkle with a little sea salt and pepper.

3. Bake in oven for 15 minutes. Serve warm.