Stuffed Baked Potato

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Ingredients:

4 large baking potatoes (washed and dried) Place an X on top of the potato.

1/2 cup sharp cheddar cheese (shredded)

1/2 cup gruyere cheese (shredded)

1/2 cup cooked bacon (chopped)

3 tbsp. scallions (chopped)

4 tbsp. butter

4 tbsp. heavy cream

salt and pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

1. Bake potatoes for 50 minutes.

2. Remove from oven and cut open the top  and scoop out 3/4 of the potato.

3. In a bowl, add the scooped out potato. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. Add cheeses, bacon, scallions, butter and heavy cream. Mix well.

4. Scoop mixture back into the potatoes. You can sprinkle extra cheese and bacon on top if you like.

5. Return potatoes to oven for 10 minutes and then serve hot.

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Chicken and Eggplant

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Ingredients:

6 chicken cutlets (sliced into pieces)

1 large eggplant (peeled and cut into 1/4 inch thick pieces)

8 scallions (cut in half)

4 cloves of garlic (chopped)

olive oil

salt and pepper

Ingredients For Brown Sauce:

1 cup chicken stock

1 tbsp. soy sauce

1/2 tsp. sugar

1 tbsp. cornstarch

Directions:

1. In a large skillet, put 2 tbsp. of olive oil and brown garlic. Add chicken and brown on each side for 2 minutes each. Remove and put chicken to the side.

2. Add 2 tbsp. of olive oil to same pan. Add eggplant. Sprinkle a pinch of salt and pepper. Stir eggplant. If dry, add another tbs. of olive oil. Add scallions. When eggplant becomes soft, add chicken back to pan. Stir. Put on a low heat.

3. In a separate pan, add all of the brown sauce ingredients. Stir continuously and bring to a boil.

4. When sauce is boiling, pour over chicken and eggplant. Stir well. Let simmer on a low heat for 5 minutes and serve.

Balsamic Scallops Over Asparagus

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Ingredients:

2 lbs. large scallops

1 lb. asparagus (tough ends trimmed off)

4 cloves of garlic (chopped)

3 tbsp. olive oil

3 tbsp. balsamic vinegar

sea salt and pepper

Directions:

1. In a large Ziploc bag put scallops, olive oil, balsamic vinegar and half of the chopped garlic. Let marinate for at least 2 hours. (Overnight is fine too.)

2. In a large pot of boiling water, boil asparagus for 8-10 minutes. Drain well. Asparagus should be tender. Leave to the side.

3. In a large skillet, put 2 tbs. of olive oil. Add remaining garlic and brown for a minute.

4. Add scallops. Cook on both sides for at least 4-5 minutes. (on each side)

5. Add asparagus during the last two minutes. Sprinkle a pinch of sea salt and black pepper.

Serve scallops on top of asparagus. Serves 4.

Asparagus Frittata

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Ingredients:

3 tbsp. unsalted butter plus 1 tbsp.

1/3 cup minced shallots

1 tsp. sea salt

1 lb. asparagus, tough ends snapped off, spears cut into 1-inch pieces

8 large eggs (beaten)

1 1/2 cups shredded Swiss cheese

Directions:

1. Melt 3 tbsp. of butter into large iron- skillet.  Add shallots and cook until they soften.  (3 minutes)  Add asparagus, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook, covered, for 3 minutes.

2. In a bowl, mix eggs with shredded Swiss cheese.

3. Add an additional tbsp. of butter to skillet. Pour in eggs and cheese and cook until almost set, but still runny on top. (about 2-3 minutes)

4. While cooking, pre-heat oven broiler.

5.  Pu iron-skillet in oven to broil until cheese is well melted and frittata is browned on top. (about 4-5 minutes) Remove from oven and slide frittata onto serving dish. Cut into pieces. (see photo)

Hamantaschen

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Ingredients:

5 1/2 cups of flour

4 large eggs

1 1/4 cups sugar

3 tsp. baking powder

2 tsp. vanilla

1 cup vegetable oil

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

1. Mix together eggs, oil, sugar, and vanilla. Add flour and baking powder.  Mix.

2. Knead until smooth.

3. On a floured board, roll dough out very thin (1/8 inch).

4. Cut out circles using a large drinking glass or the top of sugar bowl.

5. Put a dollop of filling in the center of each circle.

6. Fold in three sides over the filling to form a triangle with filling showing in the center.

7. On a greased baking sheet (a little butter) place hamantaschen.

Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown on the corners. 

Ricotta Torte

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Ingredients:

For Dough:

2 cups flour

1/2 tsp. salt

1 cup shortening (butter)

2 egg yolks, slightly beaten

1 tbsp. cold water

Filling:

3 cups ricotta cheese

1 cup sugar

1/4 cup flour

2 tbsp. grated orange peel

2 tbsp. grated lemon peel

2 tbsp. citron (chopped fine)

1 tbsp. vanilla

Directions;

1. Sift together the flour and salt.  Cut shortening into tiny pieces. Add to flour. Add egg and water a little at a time and continuously mix. Add only enough water to hold dough together.

2. Shape pastry into a ball and flatten slightly on floured board. Roll into a round about 1/8 inch thick about 1 inch larger than the size of a 9 inch round deep cake pan.

3. Place dough gently in pan.  Trim dough allowing about a 1/2 inch border. Pinch dough between fingers to make it stand 1/4 inch high around edge of cake pan. Set aside.

For Filling:

4. Beat the eggs well.

5.  Add sugar and beat until thick. Stir beaten egg mixture into ricotta mixture until blended and smooth.

6. Add lemon peel, orange peel and citron. Mix well.

7. Pour into pan.

8. Bake at 350 degrees about for 50-60 minutes.  Mixture should be firm and pastry golden brown.

9. Remove from oven and place on cooling rack.

Optional:  Sprinkle with confectioners sugar on top.