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Recipes

To atone for the sin of having created something as self-serving as a website we include recipes. We like to eat and we like to cook and we like to share ideas for cooking. We'll add others from time to time.
We included nothing difficult; in fact, these recipes are idiotproof. We're sure this is true, because they work for us!
The first (and only drink) recipe, we offer in respectful and loving memory of our father.

Monroe's Perfect Martini

Version for small children:
Look at your hand.
The long fingers are the gin.
The short finger (i.e. thumb) is the vermouth.
Version for adults:
3 oz. Gin for each Martini
with a tiny splash of vermouth
Mix in pitcher with four or five ice cubes for about a minute until
chilled. Mix gently so you don't bruise the gin.
Put one piece of ice in each glass, swirl several times until glass is
frosted.
Dump out ice, pour in booze.
Pare a sliver of lemon peel. Give it a brisk twist over glass. Examine
lemon oil slick briefly prior to first sip.

Thai Red Curry

1 pound dried noodles of any kind
1 tablespoon oil
2 to 4 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1 tablespoon grated ginger
1 big onion, thinly sliced
2-3 big carrots, sliced into quarter-inch rounds
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 15-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk
1 teaspoon to 3 tablespoons red Thai curry paste or lots of your favorite curry powder
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 pound shrimp (optional; this is a good meal even without the protein)
Fresh basil or cilantro leaves

  • In a large pot, cook the noodles in boiling water until tender. Drain and rinse well to stop cooking, then set aside.
  • Pour the oil into a wok or skillet and heat until it's almost smoking. Add the garlic and ginger and sauté over medium-high heat for 30 seconds.
  • Add the onion and heat until it is softened, about 2 minutes.
  • Add the carrots and red pepper, and sauté until softened, about 7 minutes.
  • Add the coconut milk, curry paste and soy sauce and stir until the paste is well blended with the coconut milk.
  • Add peeled and cleaned shrimp. Lower the heat and simmer for 3 to 4 minutes or until the shrimp are pink.
  • Ladle over piles of noodles and shower with torn basil or cilantro leaves. Serves 4.

Modified from the New York Times May 18, 2003

Lamb Shanks with White Beans
(adapted slightly from the Washington Post)

about 2 1/2 pounds lamb shanks (4--get the butcher to cut them each into three chunks--it's easier to get at the marrow that way)
flour for dredging
salt and pepper
olive oil
1 cup chopped celery (or more)
1 cup chopped onion (or more)
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup white wine
1 cup chicken broth
Dijon-style mustard
8 - 10 sundried tomatoes (or more)
4 cups cooked white beans (but don't cook them all the way--they should be slightly hard before going into the oven. If you start with dried beans and soak them overnight, don't bother to cook them, just put them in with everything else when you put the casserole in the oven)
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit
  • Dredge shanks in flour that has been salted and peppered
  • Brown shanks in olive oil in an oven-proof casserole--this needs to be big enough to hold everything.
  • Remove shanks from pot and place in a bowl to cool off.
  • Sautee vegetables until the onion is translucent
  • Cut up the sundried tomatoes, and add to the pot.
  • Add wine and broth--bring to a boil.
  • Turn off heat.
  • Rub the cooled lamb shanks with mustard, place in pot.
    Bring to a boil again.
    (If you use dried beans that you have soaked, but not cooked, add them now. This is preferable because they will soak up the juices and taste more interesting.)
  • Cover, place in preheated oven.
  • Bake for at least 45 minutes. If you need more liquid, add either broth or plain old water.
    (If you use beans that you have previously cooked, put them in now, and cook for another 10 - 15 minutes until they are hot through.)
  • Bake for another hour (at least). If you make sure you always have enough liquid, it is impossible to cook this too long.
Joan P. Karasik's Bread Pudding
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit.
  • Combine in oven-proof dish:
    1 1/2 cup bread cubes
    2 Tablespoons grated orange peel
    1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Mix together:
    2 cups of milk
    2/3 cup of sugar
    4 eggs
    The orange juice from the orange whose peel you used.
  • Add liquid to bread mixture.
  • Bake for 45 minutes.

Steve Rosenfeld's Peperonata
  • In a big saucepan, sautée until soft:
    Garlic (lots) put through garlic press
    Olive oil (lots)
    1 red onion cut thin in fingernail-paring-shaped sections
    Salt (use bouillon cubes if you have reasonably good ones--the really cheap Star brand you get in Italy are good)

  • Throw in:
    Strips of red (or yellow or even green) sweet peppers
    4 or 5 of those tiny dried hot red peppers

  • Let everything soften--
    Then throw in a can of tomatoes.

  • Cook for as long as possible without burning (too much, a little burn, especially in the ends of the onions, can give a nice taste), so the oil condenses.
  • Variations include:
    with zucchinis
    with roasted eggplant
    with sausages (although this is really fine without)
    This is a great side dish with roast beef, also good with cous cous.


Judy's Eggplant

  • Set oven at 350 Farenheit
  • Wash eggplant--use a big eggplant, smooth satiny skin, nice and bouncy feel--and cut off the ends.
  • Cut lengthwise.
  • Score deeply in tic-tac-toe pattern on cut side. Usually three or four cuts in one direction, four or five in the other direction.
  • Salt and place in colander for at least half an hour to get some of the bitter juices out.

  • Make sauce:
    Lots of finely-chopped garlic
    Olive oil
    Whatever else you like: tomato paste, parsley, other fresh or dried herbs, a little curry, anything that seems to make sense that you have at hand.

  • After eggplant has drained, rinse off the salt, squeeze out as much liquid as you can, and mash the sauce deeply into the cuts.
  • Roast in oven until eggplant flesh is soft and completely cooked.


Quick Sausage Pasta Sauce
(adapted from Rogers Gray Italian Country Cook Book)

2 Tb olive oil
2 small red onions, peeled and chopped
5 "Italian spiced" fresh pork sausages, meat removed from skins
1 1/2 heaped Tbs fresh rosemary (essential)
2 bay leaves
2 small dried hot red peppers
1 big can tomatoes
salt and pepper
  • In large saucepan, sautée onions in oil until light brown
  • Add sausage, rosemary, bay leaves, little hot red peppers.
  • Sautée over high heat, breaking up the sausage
  • Remove all but 1 Tb of the fat
  • Cook for another 20 minutes (the meat should be brown and crumbly)
  • Add tomatoes, stir, boil, and either remove from the stove if you like it that way, or if you like your tomatoes to have a more cooked taste, cook longer.
  • Serve with Parmesan cheese on the side.
  • Paul also does this adding a lot of heavy cream right at the end. I think it is good enough without.


Spicy Raw Pickling Cucumber Slices
(adapted from Madhur Jaffrey)
  • Get several of those tiny cucumbers people use to make pickles.
  • Peel and cut in half lengthwise, then in half lengthwise again.
  • Arrange in a flat soup bowl.
  • Combine spices; usually some combination of cayenne (essential), cumin (you can roast the whole seeds and then grind them), or anything else you think might work. Salt and pepper.
  • Pour juice of a lemon or a half a lemon over the sliced cucumbers.
  • Sprinkle spices over the sliced cucumbers.
  • Eat at room temperature.

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