Spike's & Jamie's Recipe Collection & a Whole Lot More!

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Recipes from Spike & Jamie

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How to use these pages:  Below is a list of the recipes on this page.  You can either scroll down the page and look at all of the recipes, or look at the titles.  When you find one that seems interesting, use your web browsers FIND function to take you directly to that recipe (on my IE browser it's Edit/Find (on this page)   or Ctrl - F on your keyboard).



































































1 tablespoon Vegetable Oil

2 medium Onion -- chopped

1 pound Ground Beef, extra lean

1 teaspoon Salt

1/2 Pepper

1 teaspoon Jalapeno Peppers, canned -- chopped fine

2 tablespoons Sugar

1/4 teaspoon Oregano

1/2 teaspoon Basil

1 clove Garlic -- minced

24 ounces Tomato Sauce

3 cups Water

8 ounces Spaghetti -- uncooked

1 cup Mozzarella Cheese -- shredded

4 tablespoons Parmesan Cheese -- grated

Heat oil in saucepan or skillet. Add onion and cook until onion is transparent & soft. Crumble beef into the mixture, stir and fry until meat loses red color. Add garlic, basil, oregano, jalapeno & sugar. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Pour in tomato sauce and water; bring to boil. Break spaghetti; sprinkle in a little at a time, stirring into sauce and keeping it separated. Cover tightly. Simmer 20 to 30 minutes. Stir toward end of cooking time. Serve with cheese as desired.

Copyright: "Kaylin Cherry/Real Food for Real People"




1 pound asparagus

1/4 cup pine nuts

2 or 3 medium garlic cloves

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 ounces freshly grated Parmigiano-reggiano cheese (about 2/3 cup)


Have a bowl of ice water ready. Trim woody ends from asparagus. Cut asparagus stalks crosswise into 2-inch pieces, reserving tips. In a steamer set over boiling water, steam the asparagus stalks, covered, 4 minutes. Add reserved asparagus tips and steam, covered, until just tender, about 1 minute.


Immediately transfer asparagus to ice water to stop cooking. Drain asparagus well in a colander and pat dry. In a food processor, pulse pine nuts and garlic with salt until finely chopped. Add asparagus and oil and pulse until asparagus is coarsely chopped.


Transfer pesto to a large bowl and stir in Parmigiano-reggiano.




2 cups cooked pearl barley (1 cup uncooked; see note)

1/2 cup raisins or chopped dates

1/4 cup slivered almonds

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon grated lemon peel (colored part only)

1/2 cup honey

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

2 eggs

21/2 cups whole milk

1/4 teaspoon salt


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.


Place cooked barley, raisins, almonds, lemon juice and grated peel in 2-quart baking dish.


Mix together honey, vanilla, eggs, milk and salt; pour over barley. Stir to mix well. Bake 30 minutes or until pudding is set.


Note: To cook barley, place 1 cup pearl barley and 3 cups water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook 45 minutes or until barley is tender and liquid is absorbed. Place any extra cooked barley in an airtight container and refrigerate or freeze for use later.




Nutty nutritious barley is a versatile winter staple


To give winter meals an extra element of nutrition and a nice chewy texture, try recipes that include old-fashioned pearl barley. It has a nutty flavor that complements both savory and sweet dishes.


For an easy supper with Southwestern seasoning, serve Santa Fe Beans and Barley, with canned pinto beans, green chilies and Monterey jack cheese.


Or try a comforting dessert: Barley Baked Pudding, with toasted almonds, raisins, honey, eggs and milk.


Pearl barley is available in most supermarkets in the rice and pasta aisle. You may wish to cook a batch of the barley and freeze 1-cup portions in airtight containers. Thaw the amount you need, fluff with a fork and add to soups, stews, casseroles and salads to give them a boost.


For more recipe ideas, send a self-addressed, stamped business-size envelope to: National Barley Foods Council, Dept. AP, 905 W. Riverside, Suite 501, Spokane, WA 99201.



12 fresh pasta sheets cut into 6" squares


2 lb. fresh asparagus

ground salt

4 tablespoons sweet butter

2 tablespoons olive oil

Salt, freshly ground pepper & nutmeg to taste

3 extra large egg yolks

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese


6 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/2 cup flour

1 1/2 cups milk

Salt to taste


4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/4 cup flour

2 1/2 cups milk

Salt and freshly ground pepper


Prepare pasta sheets by cutting into 6 inch squares (or much smaller if serving as a first course). Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add about 1 tbl. salt. Put a large bowl of cold water with about 2 tbl. of olive oil added next to the pot. When water reaches boiling point, put pasta squares into pot, one by one and cook until al dente, no longer than 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon transfer each piece of pasta to the bowl of cold water to cool. Dampen a dish towel and spread it out on the table. Remove each piece of pasta from cold water and place it on the damp towel. Allow to rest for about 20 minutes before stuffing. If the need arises to let them rest longer, cover with a second damp towel.


Soak the asparagus in a bowl of cold water for about 20 minutes, then cut them into 1 1/2 inch pieces, discarding the white part. Do not scrape the asparagus. Bring a large pot of cold water to a boil. Add salt to taste, then add the asparagus and boil for 2 minutes. Drain the asparagus in a colander and cool under cold running water.


Heat 4 tbl. of butter and the olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. When the butter is completely melted, add the asparagus and saute for 10 minutes. Taste for seasonings. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the asparagus to a bowl. Let them cool for about 20 minutes.


Meanwhile, prepare the balsamella for the stuffing with the 6 tbl. of butter, the flour, milk and salt. (Melt butter over low heat, add flour, stir with wooden spoon constantly for 3 minutes or so and then add hot milk, all at once. Stir until it starts to thicken, add salt, cook over low heat for about 10 minutes.) Transfer balsamella to crockery bowl, pressing a piece of buttered wax paper over sauce to eliminate skin. Let stand until cool.


Prepare balsamella for the topping with ingredients and quantities listed following the same directions as above. Transfer this sauce to a second bowl with waxed paper on top. Let cool.


Place egg yolks and Parmesan in the bowl with the cooled sauce for stuffing and mix very well until all ingredients are well incorporated. Add cooled asparagus and mix gently. Preheat the oven to 375 F.


To stuff cannelloni, place each pasta square on a board and spread about 3 heaping tablespoons of the stuffing along one of the edges. Then roll up, starting at the same edge. Repeat with all cannelloni, then place them in one or two well-buttered baking dishes. Pour the balsamella for topping over the cannelonis, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, and bake for about 20 minutes or until bubbling.


Allow to cool about 10 minutes, then serve.



Serves 6


6 tablespoons ( 3/4 stick) unsalted butter

1 large yellow onion, chopped

1/4 cup finely chopped fresh ginger root

3 cloves garlic, minced

7 cups chicken stock

1 cup dry white wine

1 1/2 pounds carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Pinch of curry powder

Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Snipped fresh chives or chopped fresh parsley (garnish)


Melt butter in large stock pot over medium heat. Add onion, ginger and garlic and saute for 15 to 20 minutes. Add stock, wine and carrots. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered over medium heat until the carrots are very tender, about 45 minutes.


Puree soup in blender or food processor fitted with steel blade. Season with lemon juice, curry powder and salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with the chives or parsley. Serve soup hot or chilled.



(Yiu Gwoh Gai)

3 lb Chicken or 2 whole chicken breasts

1/4 lb Raw cashew nuts

20 small Chinese mushrooms (or 1 medium-size can mushrooms)

4 Stalks celery

1/2 c Bamboo shoot tips (water packed in 15 oz-can)

1 Yellow onion, thinly sliced

3 tb Oil, approximately

1/2 ts Salt

1/2 ts Sugar

2 c Chicken stock

1 tb Cornstarch

2 tb Water



3/4 ts Salt

1/2 ts Sugar

1 ts Thin soy sauce

1 tb Oyster sauce

Dash of pepper

1 tb Cornstarch

2 Spring onions, sliced

3 Thin slices ginger root - slivered

2 c Oil for deep-frying


1. Skin and bone chicken. Cut into 2" x 1/2" pieces.


2. Sprinkle the chicken with each of the ingredients listed under "marinade," mix well, then add the green onions and ginger. Marinate for 1 hour.


3. Heat 2 cups oil to 325 degrees and deep-fry cashew nuts for 5 minutes, drain and salt lightly.


4. Boil Chinese mushrooms for 10 minutes, rinse, squeeze dry, cut off and discard stems. If you use canned mushrooms, omit this step.


5. Cut celery into 1 1/2" pieces, then cut each piece lengthwise into strips, julienne style.


6. Cut bamboo shoot tips into thin slices.


7. Peel water chestnuts (using potato peeler) and cut a little off the top and the bottom of each one. Then cut them into thin slices and soak in water to prevent

them from turning dark. (Canned water chestnuts are already peeled.)


8. Heat wok, add 1 t. oil and stir-fry the bamboo tips and water chestnuts together, if you use fresh water chestnuts. (If canned ones are used, stir-fry them separately in 1 teaspoon oil for 1-2 minutes, adding 2 teaspoons sugar.) Set aside.


9. Heat wok, add 1 teaspoon oil and stir-fry mushrooms, celery and yellow onion for 3 minutes, with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon sugar. Set aside.


10. Heat wok, add 2 tablespoons oil and stir-fry marinated chicken for 3 minutes. Add chicken stock, cover and cook for 10 minutes over medium heat.


11. Add vegetables which have been previously set aside and bring to a fast boil.


12. Thicken with a mixture made with the cornstarch and 2 tablespoon cold water. Bring to a boil, cook for 1 minute and turn off the heat.


13. Add cashew nuts, mix thoroughly, and serve.



6 slices firm white bread

1 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry

1 cup whipping cream

3/4 cup crumbled blue cheese, grated manchego or mild cheddar cheese (see note)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted (see note)


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly oil 24 muffin cups, each 13/4 inches wide.


With a 11/2-inch cookie cutter, cut 4 rounds from each slice of bread. Place the 24 rounds on a cookie sheet; bake until just pale gold, turning once, about 5 minutes. Gently press toasted rounds into the bottom of muffin cups; set aside.


In a medium bowl, combine spinach, cream, cheese, salt, pepper and nutmeg until blended. Spoon mixture into bread cups and sprinkle with pine nuts. Bake until filling is set, about 15 minutes. Remove to a wire rack to cool slightly. Serve warm.


The baked tartlets may be frozen in a tightly covered container; to reheat, place frozen tartlets on a pan in a 400-degree oven until hot, about 10 minutes.


Note: Manchego is a mild, hard Spanish cheese.


Note: To toast pine nuts, place in a small dry skillet over medium heat until golden, stirring often.




11/3 cups white chocolate baking chips

6 tablespoons butter or margarine

2 eggs

1/2 cup sugar

11/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup butter brickle baking bits, optional


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8-inch-square baking pan.


Melt 1 cup of the white chocolate chips and the butter or margarine over low heat. Set aside to cool slightly.


Beat together the eggs and sugar until frothy. Add the vanilla. Slowly mix in the chocolate mixture. Gradually add the flour and beat until smooth. Spread the batter in the prepared pan.


Sprinkle with the remaining 1/3 cup white chocolate chips and brickle bits, if using. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes.


Place the pan on a wire rack and allow to cool completely before cutting into squares.



Serves 4

For olive salad:

1 cup green olives with pimientos, chopped

1 large clove garlic, minced

2 anchovy fillets, minced

1 tablespoon capers

1/3 cup finely chopped celery

1/3 cup chopped fresh parsley

1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves

1/2 cup fruity olive oil

Freshly ground black pepper

For chicken:

4 4-ounce skinless, boneless chicken breasts

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 teaspoon salt

4 kaiser rolls, split and toasted

Leaf lettuce

For garnish:

Carrot sticks, celery sticks, radishes

Mix all ingredients for olive salad in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate.


Dust chicken on both sides with chili powder and salt. Broil 2 to 3 minutes on each side until done but juicy.


Put leaf lettuce on bottom half of each roll. Top with a warm chicken breast and lots of olive salad.


Cut sandwich in half. Serve with carrot sticks, celery sticks and radishes.



Serves 4-6

For marinade:

2 teaspoons beaten egg white

1 teaspoon Chinese white rice wine or gin

2 teaspoons cornstarch

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/2 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into thin slices 1 1/2 inches long by 1

inch wide

For sauce:

1 1/2 tablespoons oyster sauce

2 teaspoons Chinese white rice wine or gin

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

Pinch freshly ground white pepper

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1/4 cup chicken stock

1 teaspoon sesame oil

For vegetable-fruit mixture:

3 tablespoons peanut oil

1 tablespoon sliced fresh ginger, in tissue-thin half moons

5 ounces asparagus, tough ends cut off, cut into 1/4-inch pieces on a diagonal ( 3/4


1 celery stalk, cut into 1/4-inch pieces on a diagonal ( 1/2 cup)

1/2 cup red bell pepper cut into 1- by 1/4-inch-thick pieces

1 Bosc pear, peeled, quartered, cored and cut into 1/4-inch pieces on a diagonal ( 3/4


2 large shallots, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon minced garlic

2 teaspoons Chinese white rice wine or gin

1/2 cup macadamia nuts


In a large bowl, combine marinade ingredients. Add chicken and allow to marinate for at least 20 minutes. In another bowl, combine sauce ingredients and reserve.


Heat a wok over high heat for 45 seconds. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons peanut oil and coat wok with it using a spatula. When a wisp of white smoke appears, add ginger slices, stir and cook for 15 seconds. Add asparagus and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add celery and bell pepper and cook, stirring, for another minute. Add pear and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Turn off heat, remove contents of wok and reserve. Wipe off wok and spatula with paper towels.


Heat wok over high heat for 30 seconds. Add remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil and coat wok with it using a spatula. When a wisp of white smoke appears, add shallots, stir, and cook for 20 seconds. Add garlic and stir briefly. Add chicken and marinade, spread in a thin layer, and cook for 45 seconds. Turn over and cook for 1 minute. Add wine and stir to mix. Add reserved vegetable-fruit mixture and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Make a well in center of mixture, stir sauce mixture, pour in, and stir to mix until sauce thickens, about 1 1/2 minutes. Turn off heat, add macadamia nuts, mix well, transfer to a heated platter and serve.



Makes 24 croquettes

2/3 cup hulled, raw sunflower seeds (optional)

2 cups cooked and drained chickpeas

1 cup couscous

1/2 cup tomato juice

1/2 cup dry red wine

3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

3 tablespoons soy sauce

2 tablespoons Dijon-style mustard

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

3 or more garlic cloves, minced

2 teaspoons dried rosemary

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon olive oil


If using sunflower seeds, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread seeds on a baking tray. Remove any shells or discolored seeds. Bake 5-7 minutes, until seeds smell nutty and darken slightly. Grind seeds in a food processor for 30 seconds or until coarsely chopped. Add chickpeas and process until well mixed. Leave mixture in food processor and set aside.


In a heavy, 1-quart saucepan, combine couscous, tomato juice and red wine. Stir and bring mixture to a boil. Lower heat. Cover pot and let simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, until couscous has absorbed all the liquid. Remove pot from heat and let sit for 5 more minutes.


Add cooked couscous to chickpea mixture along with remaining ingredients except for olive oil. Mix well, stopping processor and scraping down sides once or twice, until smooth.


Lightly oil your hands. Shape 2 to 3 tablespoons of chickpea mixture to form a ball. Repeat with remaining mixture until you have 24 balls. Flatten each ball to form a croquette about 2 inches wide and 1/2 inch thick. Brush each croquette with olive oil and place on a lightly oiled baking tray. Bake croquettes for about 15 minutes. Turn them over, brush with oil and bake for another 10 to 12 minutes. Serve immediately.



1 cup ripe olives -- sliced

1 medium green bell pepper -- sliced in 1-inch strips

4 cups mixed salad greens

1 cup bean sprouts -- canned, drained and rinsed

8 ounces water chestnuts, canned -- sliced, drained

1 cup sliced green onions

3/4 cup chopped celery

1 cup cooked chicken -- thinly sliced

1 tablespoon mayonnaise

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/3 cup soy sauce

4 slices bacon -- cooked and crumbled

Combine first 8 ingredients. Combine remaining ingredients except bacon; mix

thoroughly. Pour dressing over salad just before serving, tossing lightly. Sprinkle with bacon. Yield: 4 servings.




To give breakfast or brunch eaters something a little different to sample, add Fruity Breakfast Scones to the menu.


A scone is a richer, fancier version of a biscuit. These lightly crunchy scones use dried fruit and just a bit of ginger to spice them up without adding much fat (a scone contains only about 6 grams.)


Save time in the morning by mixing together the dry ingredients for the scones the night before. Oatmeal replaces some of the flour in this recipe, adding a mildly nutty flavor and some extra fiber. The next morning, it will take just a few minutes to add the remaining ingredients, mix and bake.


Scones taste best served warm. Accompany them with chocolate milk for the kids and cappuccino for the grown-ups. For a fuller meal, add seasonal fruit and yogurt or a light salad.




13/4 cups all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons granulated sugar

21/2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons grated orange peel (colored part only)

1/3 cup cold butter

1/2 cup dried cranberries

2 eggs, slightly beaten (divided)

4 to 6 tablespoons half-and-half


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and orange peel. Cut the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles fine crumbs. Stir in cranberries, 1 beaten egg and just enough half-and-half to enable dough to form into a ball.


Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface; knead lightly 10 times. Roll or press dough into a 9-inch circle; cut into 10 to 12 wedges. Place wedges 2 inches apart on a lightly greased cookie sheet. Brush with remaining beaten egg.


Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until light golden brown. Remove from sheet immediately. Serve warm. They are good with orange marmalade.




6 ounces tuna in water, canned -- drained and flaked

3 eggs, hard-boiled -- chopped

1/4 cup chopped green onions

1/3 cup mayonnaise

1/2 teaspoon curry powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

8 slices rye bread

1 cup Monterey Jack cheese -- shredded

Combine first 7 ingredients; spread evenly onto 4 bread slices. Sprinkle cheese evenly over tuna mixture, and top each with a bread slice.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add sandwiches; grill 2 minutes on each side or until cheese melts and sandwiches are golden. Serve immediately. 4 servings.




2 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup of brown sugar

1 Tbsp of baking powder

1 tsp of baking soda

2 tsp of cinnamon

1/3 tsp of nutmeg

1/3 tsp of ground ginger

1/3 tsp of salt

1 cup of plain yogurt (can be fat-free) or buttermilk

1 egg, beaten

1/3 cup of honey

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine all the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. In a medium-sized bowl, combine all the liquid ingredients together until well blended. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients until moistened. Pour batter into an oiled loaf pan and baked for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. Remove from oven and remove from pan. Set on a rack to cool.

Serve with margarine spread and strong coffee.





4 small Chinese eggplant (about 2 pounds)

4 large cloves garlic, quartered

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

2 large firm but ripe plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped (about 2/3 cup)

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 teaspoons tahini

2 teaspoons dark sesame oil

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, garnish

1 teaspoon minced lemon zest, garnish

1 small red onion, diced, garnish


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.


Make a slit about 3 inches long and 1 inch deep in each eggplant. Tuck the garlic pieces in the slit in each eggplant, pushing gently to mesh the garlic with the flesh of the eggplant. Drizzle the olive oil into the slits of each eggplant.


Place eggplant in a heat-proof baking dish and roast about 30 minutes. Cover dish with foil and bake an additional 30 minutes, or until tender.


Place lemon juice in a medium bowl. When eggplant is cool enough to handle, scrape flesh onto a cutting board and chop coarsely. Add immediately to the lemon juice. Add remaining ingredients and mix well.


Garnish with toasted sesame seeds, lemon zest and red onion and serve.


This dish will keep well for several days refrigerated.



Here are tips for saving energy in the kitchen:


Microwave oven


Microwave ovens use about 50 percent less energy than conventional ovens. They are most efficient for small portions or defrosting.




Minimize preheating time. Unless you're baking breads or pastries, you might not need to preheat.


Don't open the oven door too often to check on food. Each time you open the door, the oven temperature drops by 25 degrees.


Use glass or ceramic pans in ovens, which allows you to turn down the temperature about 25 degrees. Foods will cook just as quickly.


Stove top


Turn off electric burners several minutes before the allotted cooking time. The heating element will stay hot enough to finish cooking most dishes. The same is true with oven cooking.


Match the size of the pan to the heating element.


Consider using a pressure cooker. By cooking food at a high temperature and pressure, cooking time is reduced dramatically and energy use is cut by 50 to 75 percent.




If your dishwasher has an air-dry setting, choose it instead of heat-drying. You'll cut your dishwasher's energy use 15 to 50 percent. If there's no air-dry setting, turn the dishwasher off after its final rinse and open the door. The dishes will dry slowly.




Refrigerators and freezers consume about a sixth of all electricity in a typical house. Get rid of that older, energy-hogging second refrigerator in the garage. Modern refrigerators use 60 percent less electricity on average than 20-year-old models. (Note: Always dispose of an older refrigerator or freezer properly. Make sure the door is removed so children cannot be trapped inside.)


Refrigerators with the freezer on either the bottom or top are the most efficient.


Buy the right size refrigerator for your needs. Too large a refrigerator may waste space and energy.


Open the refrigerator door as little as possible. Get in and out quickly. Label leftovers so you can quickly see what they are.


Barbecue grills


Grilling foods is a great way to conserve on electricity, particularly if you're using charcoal, not gas. Grill extra food, then microwave the leftovers during the week.


Small appliances


Unplug all appliances that don't need to be plugged in all day and night. Many small appliances continue to draw power, even when they are switched off.


More energy-saving tips

Access these Web sites: www.energystar.gov, www.pge.com, www.flexyourpower.ca.gov




This is a delightful way to serve vegetables as an appetizer or first course. Vegetables such as carrots, cauliflower and zucchini are cooked with spices and then marinated with lime juice and hot chiles.


This is great served with homemade tortilla chips and a cool drink or Mexican beer.


1 white onion, chopped

12 cloves garlic, sliced

4 carrots, thinly sliced on the diagonal

1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

1 1/2 cups white vinegar

1/2 cup olive oil

2 cups water

2 tablespoons salt

1 head cauliflower, broken into flowerettes

6 bay leaves, broken in half

3 zucchini, sliced on the diagonal

1 teaspoon ground thyme

1 teaspoon ground oregano

1 teaspoon ground marjoram

1/2 cup lime juice

1 jicama, peeled and sliced

1/2 cup pickled jalapenos


Put all the ingredients, except lime juice, jicama and jalapenos, in a large nonreactive pot, bring to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Let cool, then add the lime juice, jicama and jalapenos. Store, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Remove bay leaves before serving.



3/4 lb. fresh fettuccine

1 tsp. unsalted butter

1 tsp. olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

1 lb. fresh spinach, shredded

1 cup double cream

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, more if desired


Cook pasta al dente. Drain well. Melt butter and oil over medium high heat. Saute garlic 2-3 minutes, until soft. Stir in spinach and cook 1 minute, stirring. Add pasta and cream to spinach mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Raise heat to medium high and cook 3 minutes, until sauce thickens slightly. Stir in cheese and toss gently.




1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese

1/4 cup salsa

1/4 cup apricot preserves

1/4 cup sliced ripe olives

1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro, if desired

Assorted crackers, if desired


1. Place block of cream cheese on serving plate with shallow rim.


2. Mix salsa and preserves; spread over cream cheese. Sprinkle with olives and cilantro. Serve with crackers.




I could tell it was going to be a cold day in Tokyo if the first thing I saw when I woke up was my breath, condensing as I exhaled.


Japanese feel close to nature, I think, because nature is so close. You can't avoid it. Enduring an East Coast-type climate, most people have neither central heat nor central air conditioning.


When it comes to energy, Japan lives in a perpetual crisis. It imports all its gas and oil. Most homes, as well as small businesses and schools, rely on space heaters and kerosene stoves. In classes, students covet the desks near enough to the heater to be warm, but not so close as to get sweaty.


Granted, I lived in Japan during an oiru shokku, one of the OPEC-inspired oil shortages. Even in centrally heated offices, thermostats were set to 60 in winter, and what felt like 80 in the sticky summer.


Out of perversity, I spent my first Tokyo winter without a heater in my apartment. Intending to go native, I made do with a kotatsu, a low table with a light bulb-like heater attached on the underside. (In the old days, it used hot coals.) Drape a padded blanket over the table, set a second table top over the blanket and stick your legs underneath. You're perfectly comfy, with toasty toes, wearing a down vest and sitting on a cushion atop the tatami mats. You're comfy, that is, as long as you don't move.


The kotatsu is the near ultimate in energy conservation; how much more efficient to heat several pairs of legs in a tiny space rather than the air in an uninsulated room or house. Before TV created the couch potato, there were unbudging kotatsu addicts. Carefully tucked in, you chat, drink, snack or watch TV -- and dread anything that requires leaving the coziness.


Properly, families don't eat meals at a kotatsu. But in tiny apartments like mine, the kotatsu was the dining table, kitchen table, coffee table, night stand and end table all rolled into one.


The ideal way to cope with a frigid evening was to set a bubbling ceramic pot in the center of the kotatsu (no having to get up for seconds) and share a leisurely meal with a friend.


A winter favorite is oden, a stew of fish dumplings and vegetables. In truth, oden is best eaten at a small shop, where you sit at the counter and order from steaming trays in front, or at a street vendor's cart. The colder you've been, the more delicious the broth.


Here in the Bay Area, when the days begin warming, we are lulled into forgetting any weather worries. But on those unexpected chilly nights, we can pretend the electricity crisis makes us suffer in the cold, and comfort ourselves with a pot of stew.


If you wish to make oden, a flameproof ceramic pot (donabe) that disperses heat slowly works best. The pot and the fish cake ingredients are available at Japanese and other Asian groceries.




Leftovers get a makeover in this answer to the age-old question, ``What do I do with last night's rice?'' Actually, the fluffy, slightly dry texture of fried rice practically depends on your using day-old or at least not-straight-from-the-stove-or-

steamer rice. Freshly cooked rice still contains so much moisture that when you stir-fry it with the other ingredients, you end up with a wet, clumpy dish. Break up any clumps that have formed in the leftover rice by gently rubbing the grains between your fingers or breaking them apart with a wooden spoon or rubber scraper before stir-frying. Separate grains stir-fry more quickly and evenly.


3 tablespoons cooking oil

2 eggs, lightly beaten

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon white pepper

3 cups cold, cooked long-grain rice, fluffed

3/4 cup frozen peas and carrots, thawed

3/4 cup diced char siu (barbecued pork; purchased)

1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce

4 green onions, thinly sliced


Place wok over high heat until hot. Add 2 tablespoons oil, swirling to coat sides. Add eggs, salt and pepper; cook until lightly scrambled. Use spatula to move eggs to the side. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Add rice; stir for 2 minutes.


Add peas and carrots, and char siu; stir to mix well. Add soy sauce and green onions; stir-fry 1 minute.


Variation: After making fried rice for a while, you can cast recipes aside. Fried rice is really meant to be one of those do-it-yourself dishes, so whatever looks good in your pantry is a potential fried rice ingredient. I chose the particular ingredients for this dish with the goal of creating a fried rice like those you get at Chinese restaurants. You can create your own fried rice dishes by using regional or seasonal ingredients. For instance, if you'd like fried rice with shrimp, it's easy to do. Before you add the eggs, quickly stir-fry some shrimp until they begin to curl and turn pink. Set them aside, proceed with the fried rice recipe, and return the shrimp to the wok for a quick heat-through before serving.



11/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup quick or old-fashioned oatmeal, uncooked

1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar (divided)

11/2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon grated lemon peel (yellow part only)

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

4 tablespoons butter or margarine, chilled (1/2 stick; see note)

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1/2 cup chopped dried apricots

1/4 cup golden raisins

2/3 cup buttermilk

1 egg, lightly beaten


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly spray cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray.


In large bowl, combine flour, oatmeal,1/4cup sugar, baking powder, lemon peel, ginger, baking soda and salt; mix well. Cut in butter with 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in cranberries, apricots and raisins. Combine buttermilk and egg; add to mix. Mix with fork just until dry ingredients are moistened.


Transfer dough to a cookie sheet. Pat into an 8-inch circle about 3/4-inch thick. Sprinkle with remaining 1 tablespoon sugar. Cut into 10 wedges with sharp knife; separate wedges slightly. Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until light golden brown.


Separate wedges; transfer to cooling rack. Serve warm.


Note: Use real butter or stick margarine that's at least 80 percent fat. Do not substitute reduced-fat spreads; their higher water content often yields less-satisfactory results




1/2 cup walnut (or pecan) pieces

1 cup pitted green olives (if stuffed, remove pimientos)

1/2 cup parsley, tough stems removed

6 scallions, cut into 2-inch pieces

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, or to taste

1/4 teaspoon crushed hot red pepper flakes

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 cup parmesan cheese


Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spread the walnuts in shallow baking dish. Toast in the oven, shaking once or twice, until the nuts are lightly browned and fragrant, 5-7 minutes. Transfer to a plate and let cool.


In a food processor, combine the olives, toasted walnuts, parsley, scallions, lemon juice and pepper flakes. Pulse, scraping sides of the bowl occasionally, until the mixture is finely chopped.


With the machine on, slowly pour the olive oil through the feed tube until incorporated.


Toss in parmesan cheese and pulse a few times.


Serve the pesto at room temperature with pasta, crostini, bread sticks or crackers.




1 tablespoon steak sauce, such as A1

2 tablespoons ketchup

11/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

2 tablespoons minced shallots

11/4 teaspoons Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme

11/2 teaspoons lemon juice

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut in a few pieces (1/2 stick)

21/2 pounds bison steaks (rib-eye, porterhouse, filet or flank)


Mix steak sauce, ketchup, Worcestershire, shallots, mustard, thyme and lemon juice in a saucepan. Heat over medium heat and whisk in the butter. The sauce can be made ahead and reheated.


Prepare a grill or heat a large heavy skillet until it is very hot. Cook the meat over high heat for about 3 minutes on each side side for 1-inch-thick steaks, 5 minutes a side for 2-inch-thick steaks.


To serve, slice the steaks and either drizzle with heated sauce or serve the sauce on the side.



1/2 c. minced onion

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4 c. butter

1 lb. ground beef

2 T. flour

1 t. salt

1/4 t. pepper

1 lb. fresh mushrooms, sliced, or 1 can (8 oz.) sliced mushrooms, drained

1 can (10 1/2 oz.) cream of chicken soup, undiluted

1 c. commercial sour cream


Saute onion and garlic in butter over medium heat. Stir in meat and brown.

Stir in flour, salt, pepper, and mushrooms. Cook 5 min. Stir in soup.

Simmer uncovered 10 min. Stir in sour cream. Heat through. Garnish with

parsley. 4 to 6 servings. Serving Ideas: Arrange Poppy Seed Noodles in a

ring; center with Hamburger Stroganoff.



1/4 cup Olive Oil

1 large Onion -- diced

4 cloves Garlic -- minced

1 large Carrot -- finely diced

1/4 pound Prosciuto -- diced

1 1/2 pounds Ground Beef, extra lean

1 pound Italian Sausage -- with fennel

2 cups Beef Broth, ready to eat

29 ounces Tomato Sauce

2 tablespoons Marsala Wine

1/2 cup Green Bell Pepper -- diced

1/2 cup Italian Parsley -- minced

2 tablespoons Light Brown Sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons Salt

1/2 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes

1 tablespoon Oregano -- dried

2 teaspoons Basil -- dried

1 tablespoon Rosemary -- dried

2 Bay Leaves

Heat oil in pressure cooker. Add onion, garlic, carrot, and prosciuto and saute in hot oil 3 min., stirring well. Add beef and cook 2 min., stirring to break up meat. Stir in remaining ingredients. Secure lid. Over high heat, develop steam to high pressure. Reduce heat to maintain pressure and cook 10 min. Release pressure according to manufacturer's directions. Remove lid. Stir sauce well. Discard bay leaves. Cook over med-high heat, uncovered, 5 min. to reduce liquid and intensify flavor. Let stand 5 min.,

then skim fat from surface.

Refrigerate for up to 5 days before using, or freeze for 3 - 6 months.




3 cups Flour

3 1/3 tablespoons Brown Sugar

1 teaspoon Salt

1 teaspoon Garlic Powder

1 teaspoon Parsley -- flakes

1/4 teaspoon Paprika

3 1/4 teaspoons Active Dry Yeast

Place yeast into a small zip baggie and set aside, or set aside a prepackaged envelope of yeast. Mix and place remaining ingredients into a quart sized jar. Lay baggie of yeast on top of mix and apply lid. To make the bagels later, you will need the following additional ingredient:

1 1/8 cups Water

Place all ingredients into bread pan of your bread maker, in the order recommended by manufacturer. Insert the bread pan into the bread maker, and select "Dough" and loaf size (1 1/2 lb. loaf) Select desired delay option, and press Start.

When dough cycle has completed, remove dough from bread maker, and set aside

two 1/4 inch balls of dough. You will use these later to determine if it is time to boil your bagels. If the dough pops to the top of the boiling water right away, you are ready! Place dough on a floured surface and divide into 8 equal portions. Form balls, and gently press your thumb through the middle of each ball, and slowly stretch dough into a bagel shape. Leave bagels to rise on same floured surface, lightly covered with a towel. While bagels are rising, bring 3 quarts of water to a rolling boil. Add 1 Tbsp.

sugar to boiling water and stir to dissolve sugar. Drop first dough ball (you set these aside earlier) into boiling water, using a slotted spoon. When dough balls pass the test, you are ready to boil your bagels by dropping them carefully into the boiling water, 2 or 3 at a time. Boil on each side for 1 1/2 minutes, then remove from water and cool on a wire cooling rack for 1 minute.

Brush each bagel with an egg wash (1 egg + 1 Tbsp. water) and sprinkle with sesame or poppy seeds if desired. (Non stick cooking spray may be substituted for egg wash).

Bake at 400 degrees F on baking sheet which has been sprinkled with cornmeal (can use greased baking sheet), for 12 - 15 minutes or until golden brown.

Variation: Try sprinkling with Parmesan cheese and garlic bread seasoning for a more pronounced Italian flavor.






2 cups Water -- very warm

3 cups Flour -- (more or less)

2 packages Active Dry Yeast -- (5 tsp.)

1 Tablespoon Sugar

2 cups Whole Wheat Flour

1 cup Oats -- (not quick)

1/4 cup Butter or Margarine

1/4 cup Honey

2 teaspoons Salt

1 cup Sunflower Seeds -- unsalted

In a large mixing bowl, combine water, 2 cups flour, yeast and sugar. Beat on low speed for three minutes. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled- about 30 minutes. Mixture will be spongy. Stir in whole wheat flour, oats, butter, honey and salt. Mix well. Stir in sunflower seeds and remaining flour, until ready to turn onto floured surface and knead. Knead until smooth and elastic, for about 5-8 minutes. Shape into a ball and place inside a greased bowl. Turn once to coat top, and cover with a cloth.

Let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 30 minutes. Punch down and divide in half. Cover and let rise another ten minutes. Shape into two loaves, and place into two greased bread pans. Cover and let rise until doubled- about 30 minutes. Bake at 375 degrees F for 20 minutes. Cover with foil, and bake an additional 15 minutes. Remove from pans and cool on wire racks.



Serves 8

1 pound soft tofu, crumbled

1 package (10 ounces) prewashed, ready-to-eat spinach

1 cup grated smoked mozzarella cheese

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 cups dry bread crumbs

3 tablespoons olive oil

2 cups tomato sauce


In a large bowl, mix tofu, spinach, cheeses, garlic, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Shape mixture into 8 equal-size patties. Dip each patty in bread crumbs.


In a medium skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Cook patties until golden, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Serve in pool of tomato sauce.



Makes about 5 cups

4 cups chicken broth

4 large carrots, scrubbed and cut into 1/2-inch slices

1 small onion, chopped

2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger

1 clove garlic, minced

2 tablespoons peanut butter

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon curry powder, optional

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Dash of Tabasco

Salt and pepper to taste

Diced red-skinned apples for garnish


Place broth, carrots, onion, ginger, garlic, peanut butter, Worcestershire sauce and curry powder in a large saucepan. Bring to boil. Lower heat. Cover and simmer about 20 minutes, or until carrots are very tender. Cool slightly.


Blend in batches in blender or food processor until very smooth. Add nutmeg, Tabasco, salt and pepper. Garnish with diced apple.



2 tb Margarine

2 ea Lg leeks, white part chopped

1 ea Red bell pepper, diced

3 ea Matzos, broken

1 c Hot water

4 ea Potatoes, baked, peel, slice

6 oz Evaporated skim milk

1 ea Salt and pepper

1 c Grated mozzarella

1 ea Minced chives for top

Preheat oven to 350F. Heat margarine in skillet. Add leeks and saute, cover until wilted. Add red pepper saute 5 min. Combine matzos with water in bowl, soak 3-5 min. until soft. Drain, squeeze out excess water. Combine leek mixture and matzos with

remaining ingredients, except cheese and chives. Stir until fully mixed. Pour into an oiled shallow 2 qt. casserole. Sprinkle cheese over top followed by chives. Bake 35 to 40 min, or until top golden. Let stand 5 to 10 min and cut.






12 ounces lemon-lime soda -- (like Sprite or7Up)

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1/4 cup lime juice

1/4 cup vegetable oil

2 cloves garlic -- minced

2 each jalapenos -- unseeded and finely chopped

1 1/2 pounds flank steak

Vegetable cooking spray


Combine first 6 ingredients in a 2-quart shallow dish, stirring well; add flank steak, turning to coat. Cover and chill 8 hours, turning meat occasionally.

Remove steak from marinade, discarding marinade.

Coat grill rack with cooking spray, and place on grill. cook steak, covered with grill lid, over medium-hot coals (350 to 400 degrees F.) about 7 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Remove steak from grill, and sprinkle evenly with salt to taste. To serve, cut steak diagonally across grain into thin slices. Yield: 4 servings.




1/4 cup yellow cornmeal

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper

1 egg white

2 tablespoons skim milk

4 catfish fillets -- 4 oz each

Vegetable cooking spray (butter flavor)

1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds

Lemon wedges


Combine first 7 ingredients; set aside.


Whisk together egg white and milk. Dip fillets in milk mixture and dredge in cornmeal mixture.


Place fillets on a foil-lined baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and coat each fillet with cooking spray. Bake at 350 degrees F. for 30 minutes or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork. Serve with lemon wedges. Yield: 4 servings.



2 cups water

2 medium potatoes -- peeled and diced

1 medium onion -- chopped

2 carrots -- scraped and chopped

1 stalk celery -- chopped

1/2 teaspoon salt

6 1/2 ounces clams, canned -- minced, undrained

1 cup skim milk

Combine first 6 ingredients in a large saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add clams and milk; cover and simmer 5 minutes. Yield: 6 servings.



1 pound pork sausage -- mild

1 pound pork sausage -- spicy

1 medium onion -- chopped

6 cups crispy rice cereal

1 1/2 cups cooked long-grain white rice

2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

6 medium eggs

21 1/2 ounces condensed cream of celery soup -- reduced-sodium (2


1/2 cup milk

1 tablespoon butter -- softened

Grease a 3-quart rectangular baking dish; set aside. In a very large skillet, cook sausage and onion until sausage is no longer pink and onion is tender. Drain off fat. Set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine 5 cups of the cereal and the cooked rice. Spread rice mixture evenly in bottom of prepared baking dish. Spoon sausage mixture over rice layer. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese.

In a medium bowl, beat eggs, soup, and milk with a wire whisk until combined. Carefully pour over layers in baking dish. Press down lightly with back of a spoon. Toss remaining 1 cup cereal with butter. Sprinkle over top. Bake in a 325 degree F. oven 50 to 55 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Yield: 12 servings.



Serves 4-6

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 medium onion (about 1/2 pound), peeled and sliced

1 carrot, trimmed, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch lengths

1/2 pound mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed and quartered

1 tablespoon lovage or celery leaves

1 bay leaf

1 chicken (4 pounds), trimmed of excess fat and cut into serving pieces, breasts cut in

half across the bone

1 1/2 cups chicken broth

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1/2 cup heavy cream

3 egg yolks

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

3 tablespoons chopped parsley


Heat butter, uncovered, in a 2-quart souffle dish at 100 percent for 2 minutes in microwave. Add onions, carrots, mushrooms and lovage; stir to coat with butter. Add bay leaf. Arrange chicken, skin side down, on vegetables. Place breast pieces in center of dish and arrange remaining pieces around them, with meatiest portions toward outside of the dish. Add broth, salt and pepper. Cover tightly with microwave plastic wrap. Cook at 100 percent for 18 minutes.


Remove from microwave oven. Prick plastic. Let sit for 6 minutes. Uncover and skim fat. Stir cornstarch into 1/4 cup of the cream. Stir in remaining cream and egg yolks, then add 1/4 cup cooking liquid. Stir cream mixture thoroughly into stew. Cover tightly with microwave plastic wrap. Cook at 100 percent for 4 minutes.


Remove from microwave oven. Uncover and stir in lemon juice and parsley. Taste and correct seasoning.



Serves 6

1 cake konnyaku (devil's tongue jelly; this gelatinous substance is made from a type of



1 medium daikon radish (about 1/2 pound)

6 cakes ganmodoki (a type of deep-fried tofu) or 6 cakes of yakidofu (grilled tofu)

6 cakes satsuma age (deep-fried fish cake)

4 chikuwa (fish paste rolls)

2 packages kamaboko (fish paste; comes on a wooden board)

1 2-inch square kombu (giant kelp)

1/4 cup mirin (sweet cooking wine)

2 teaspoon salt

6 hard-boiled eggs


Soy sauce

Chinese hot mustard

Red pepper flakes


Rub the konnyaku lightly with salt, wash and parboil. Cut into triangles about 1/2 inch thick and with sides about 2 inches long.


Peel the daikon and cut into rounds or half-moons about 1 1/2 inches wide and 1/2 inch thick. Boil in water to cover until almost tender.


Pour boiling water over the ganmodoki to remove excess oil. Drain. Cut into pieces about 1 1/2 inches wide. Cut the satsuma age, chikuwa and kamaboko into 1/2-inch-thick slices.


Wipe the kombu with a clean, moist cloth. Put it in a flameproof ceramic pot (or in a shallow, wide pot) and add 8 cups of water. Bring to a boil, lower to a simmer, add mirin and salt to taste. Add the konnyaku and daikon; simmer a few minutes, then add eggs and fish cakes. Simmer uncovered on low heat for at least an hour (longer is better). Don't let the stock boil away.


Bring the pot to the table and serve in bowls. Provide small condiment dishes for soy sauce, mustard and pepper for dipping.


Note: Fish cake comes in various shapes and sizes and with different additions. Some have vegetables or shrimp added. You can substitute ingredients -- round satsuma age balls for the flat satsuma age, for example -- and vary the mix as you like.



(Dutch spice cake)

2 cups of self raising flour,

1/2 (half) cup dark brown sugar (demerara sugar),

1/3 (one third) cup molasses or treacle,

1 cup of milk,

1 tsp. each of ground cloves, cinnamon and ginger,

1/2 (half) tsp. grated nutmeg,

pinch of salt.

Combine all the ingredients to a smooth paste. Butter an oblong 8" x 3" cake tin, fill with dough and bake for about one hour in a slow oven (300 degrees F). When cooked, allow to cool and keep in a tin or in the bread-bin for 24 hours before serving.

This cake keeps moist when put in the bread-bin with the bread. The Dutch serve it with their 'elevenses', buttered or on a slice of bread for breakfast.




Newhouse News Service

Oven cooking may use up a lot of gas and electrical energy, compared to other methods. But maintaining your oven in tip-top condition can help make it more efficient.


Here is some oven care and safety information from the National Society of Professional Engineers and Michigan State University Extension:


Inspect your oven: Check the glass in the oven door. If it's cracked, it may break when heated, causing bits of glass to settle in the food being baked.


Check oven-door gaskets. Broken or worn gaskets allow heat to escape and can cause surrounding areas on the door to become very hot.


Blocked air vents can make the oven operate inefficiently.


Self-cleaning ovens: When it's time for a cleaning, plan ahead. Use the self-cleaning cycle right after using the oven to take advantage of residual heat. Run the cleaning cycle on the weekend or after the weekday peak energy use period ends at 7 p.m.


Pre-clean the areas not reached in the self-cleaning cycle: the frame around the opening and the edge of the door outside the gasket. Reclean these areas after the cleaning cycle is over.


Use hot water and detergent or a paste of baking soda and hot water on difficult spots; rinse well with a solution of 1 cup water and 1/2 cup of vinegar to remove all residue. This prevents it from being baked on during the high heat of the cleaning cycle.


Never clean the gasket with anything because it could be damaged and the oven would not have as good a seal.


If you choose to save energy by not using the self-cleaning cycle in your oven, do not use chemical oven cleaners. Some residue may remain, and the high heat could change it into compounds that etch the enamel. (Instead of commercial oven cleaners, clean and rinse with detergent or baking soda as described above.)


For best baking results: Place an oven thermometer in the oven to check whether the oven's thermostat is correct. Check your manual to see how the oven can be calibrated to change the temperature if it's too high or low.


Don't leave the oven door open while the oven is turned on.


Place food on a rack in the middle of the oven to guarantee even baking. Since heat rises, the air at the top of the oven tends to be hotter, which could give different results if the food is placed too high in the oven. If you use the lower rack setting, foods tend to burn on the bottom.


Oven manufacturers do not recommend placing a sheet of aluminum foil on the bottom of the oven. This can cause the oven element to burn out faster.





Saffron aioli:


1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1 tablespoon chopped drained capers

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 small clove garlic, mashed

1/8 teaspoon saffron, crushed




1 pound large shrimp (about 16 to 20), shelled and deveined

2 teaspoons paprika

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup roasted red peppers cut in 1/2-inch strips

2 tablespoons olive oil


To make aioli: In a small bowl, combine mayonnaise, parsley, capers, lemon juice, garlic and saffron; cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Makes1/2cup.


To cook shrimp: Sprinkle shrimp with paprika and salt. Wrap each shrimp with a strip of roasted red pepper and fasten with a toothpick. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add half the shrimp; cook until center is opaque, about 3 minutes, turning once; remove from skillet. Repeat with remaining shrimp, adding more oil if needed.


Or, to broil shrimp, place pepper-wrapped shrimp, without toothpicks, on a rack in a broiler pan; brush with olive oil; broil just until center is opaque, about 3 minutes.







(Makes 10 servings)


1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 eggs, separated

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup water

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cream filling (recipe follows)

15 small (11/2-inch) peppermint patties

Glaze (recipe follows)


Heat oven to 375 degrees. Line 151/2-by-101/2-by-1-inch jelly-roll pan with foil; generously grease and lightly flour foil.


Stir together flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt; set aside.


Beat egg yolks in medium bowl on high speed of mixer for 3 minutes.


Gradually add 1/4 cup granulated sugar, beating 2 additional minutes.


Add flour mixture alternately with water and vanilla to egg yolk mixture, beating on low speed just until well mixed and smooth.


Beat egg whites in another medium bowl until foamy. Gradually add 1/2 cup granulated sugar, beating until stiff peaks form. Add chocolate mixture to beaten whites, folding in carefully. Spread batter into prepared pan.


Bake 14 to 16 minutes or until top springs back when touched lightly. Invert onto towel sprinkled with powdered sugar; carefully remove foil. Immediately roll cake and towel together from narrow end; place on wire rack to cool.


Prepare Cream Filling: Unroll cake; spread with filling. Cut 10 peppermint patties into 6 to 8 pieces each; sprinkle evenly over filling. Re-roll cake. Drizzle with Glaze. Cover; refrigerate about 6 hours before serving.


Garnish with remaining peppermint patties, cut in half, before serving. Cover; refrigerate leftover cake.


Cream filling:


1 cup (1/2 pint) cold whipping cream

3 tablespoons powdered sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Green food color


Combine cold whipping cream, powdered sugar, vanilla extract and green food color in small bowl; beat until stiff.




1 tablespoon butter

1 cup powdered sugar

1 to 11/2 tablespoons hot water

Green food color


Melt butter in small microwave-safe bowl. Add powdered sugar, hot water and few drops green food color; beat until smooth and of desired consistency. Makes about 1/3 cup glaze.



If you can't find jícama-a sweet, crunchy root vegetable eaten raw-use English-cucumber rounds or put the crab mixture in a bowl and serve it with tortilla chips.


a 2-pound jícama

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, or to taste

1/2 pound jumbo lump crab meat

about 2 cups Fresh Tomato Salsa


Garnish: about 40 fresh coriander leaves


Peel jícama and cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick rounds. Cut each round into 6 or 8 wedges. In a sealable plastic bag toss wedges with 1 tablespoon lime juice to coat. Wedges may be made 1 day ahead and chilled in bag.


Pick over crab meat, removing cartilage, and shred meat. Crab meat may be prepared 1 day ahead and chilled, covered. In a bowl combine crab meat, salsa, remaining tablespoon lime juice, and salt to taste.


Top each jícama wedge with 1 tablespoon crab mixture and a coriander leaf.




For the pork:


10 ounces pork tenderloin, in one piece

1 garlic clove

1/4 small onion

1/2 t. salt

3 cups water

For the Poblano Chili Sauce


3 fresh poblano chili peppers, about 6 ounces total, roasted, peeled and chopped

1/2 cup fat free milk

1 garlic clove

1 t. salt

3 cups fat free sour cream

1-2 T. Ancho Chili Sauce

1 dash of your favorite hot sauce

1 T. Red minced onion

12 98% fat free corn tortillas

2/3 cup crumbled queso fresco or feta cheese

4 romaine lettuce leaves, shredded

1 ripe avocado, halved, pitted, peeled and sliced

3 or 4 radishes, sliced

To prepare the pork, in a sauce pan over high heat, combine the pork, garlic, onion, salt and water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, cover and simmer until the pork is tender, about 40 minutes.


To make the chili sauce, in a blender or food processor fitted with the metal blade, combine the chilies, milk, garlic and salt. Process to form a smooth puree then transfer to a bowl. Add the cream and stir to mix well.


In a sauté pan over medium high heat, sauté the onion until golden. Add the chili sauce and simmer, uncovered, until the mixture thickens slightly, about 10 minutes. Cover and keep warm over low heat.


Wet each tortilla lightly and microwave it for 15 seconds or until soft.


Dip the tortilla, one at a time, into the poblano-cream sauce and top each tortilla with an equal amount of the shredded pork. Fold in half and arrange on a warm serving platter.


Cover the tortillas with the remaining sauce and garnish with the cheese, lettuce, avocado and radishes. Serve immediately. Serves 6.




1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

5 tablespoons heavy cream

Salt and pepper to taste


Place potatoes in a medium saucepan; cover with cold water and add a little salt. Bring to a boil and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes until the potatoes are tender. Drain and steam for a few minutes to slightly dry the potatoes. Pass through a ricer into a medium bowl.


Add the butter and cream; stir until very smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.



1 can of chicken (tuna size can)

1 can cream of chicken soup

1 package pasta, can be elbow macaroni, wagon-wheels, etc.-- I have used

instant rice, too.

Boil pasta as package says, add chicken, and soup. Mix well. You might need to add a little milk if dish seems to be dry. (The hardest part is cooking the pasta)




(Makes 6 appetizer servings)


2 pounds red onions (if available) or other onions, peeled, sliced

1 cup balsamic vinegar

1/2 teaspoon honey

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Sprigs of chervil and a little reduced balsamic vinegar, for garnish




1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/4 cup oatmeal, preferably Irish pinhead-style

21/2 ounces softened butter

3/4 cup shredded Swiss cheese

1/4 tablespoon salt

3 tablespoons cold water


Blue cheese topping:


4 ounces soft blue cheese (preferably Cashel Irish Blue)

2 tablespoons plain yogurt


To prepare onion filling: Place onions and vinegar in heavy saucepan. Cover with wax paper and lid. Cook gently for 30 minutes.


Remove lid and paper, add honey and cook until liquid has almost evaporated. Season to taste. Keep warm.


To make pastry: Blend flours, oatmeal, butter, cheese and salt in blender until consistency of fine crumbs. Add cold water and form a ball. Let pastry rest for 30 minutes, then roll out. Line six 4-inch round fluted tins with pastry, prick with a fork, then allow pastry to rest for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator.


Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Bake tarts until pale golden brown.


To prepare cheese: Mash blue cheese with a fork and blend with the yogurt.


To serve: Remove warm baked pastry tarts from tins; place on large warm plates. Fill each with enough red-onion mixture to cover base and place 1 spoonful of blue cheese mixture on top. Garnish with a drizzle of reduced balsamic vinegar and chervil sprigs.



Serves 4

2 (2- to 3-inch) boiling potatoes, peeled and quartered

2 medium carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise, and cut into 1-inch pieces

2 (2-inch) onions, peeled and quartered lengthwise

2 medium celery stalks, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme


Ground black pepper to taste

1 whole chicken (4 pounds)

2 tablespoons melted butter or vegetable oil


Position rack in center of oven. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.


Toss together potatoes, carrots, onions, celery, thyme, 1/2 teaspoon salt and ground black pepper.


Remove neck and giblets from chicken. Rinse chicken and pat dry. Generously rub body and neck cavities and sprinkle skin with salt. Arrange on a lightly oiled shallow roasting pan or rimmed baking sheet. Brush melted butter over chicken.


Scatter vegetables over roasting pan in a single layer when you put the chicken into the oven. Stir vegetables every 15 to 20 minutes during cooking. Roast chicken for 55 to 65 minutes. Chicken is done when thickest part of the thigh exudes clear juices when pricked deeply with a fork and registers 170 to 175 degrees on an instant-read thermometer. Remove vegetables to a platter. Let chicken rest about 7 minutes, then carve. Arrange chicken pieces on platter with vegetables.




(Makes 4 serving)


Lamb Marinade:

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon orange-infused olive oil (see note)

3 cloves garlic, peeled, very thinly sliced

Pinch ground dried thyme, or leaves from 2 sprigs fresh thyme

Freshly ground pepper, to taste

2 loins of lamb (10 to 11 ounces each, see note)


In a ceramic dish, combine oils, garlic, thyme and pepper to taste; marinate lamb 3 to 4 hours, refrigerated. Remove from refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature before cooking.


Roasted Lamb:


1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

4 tablespoons red wine verjus, or 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

3/4 cup blood-orange juice (juice from 3 blood oranges, or other tart oranges)

1 tablespoon butter

Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1/2 cup chiffonade of mint (very finely chopped fresh mint leaves)

Parsley, chopped, for garnish

Preheat oven to 300 degrees


Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a heavy saute pan; sear lamb loins 5 minutes each side, to brown lightly, to rare stage.


Transfer lamb to roasting pan; roast for about 10 minutes, to bring meat to medium rare stage. Drain off roasted lamb juices and reserve.


Deglaze saute pan over high heat with verjus; stirring with wooden spoon or whisking, reduce liquid to about 1 tablespoon. Add orange juice; continue to cook and reduce, until orange sauce mixture is thick. Stir in reserved lamb juices; whisk in 1 tablespoon butter. Keep sauce warm.


To serve lamb: After lamb is removed from oven, place on cutting board, and put a knob of butter to melt over each piece of warm meat.


On each of four heated plates, put a mound of Potato Puree in the center (shape with a 3-inch diameter ring if available); smooth top of potato and on it place a portion of Pan-Roasted Tomatoes; sprinkle with parsley.


Around potato, place three dollops of spoonfuls of Baby Spinach.


Slice each loin of lamb into six slices. Place 2 slices of lamb on top of each mound of spinach. Put 1 teaspoon of Orange Sauce, topped with some chiffonade of mint, between each spinach-lamb mound.


Note: If orange oil is not available at your food market, O'Shea says you can infuse your own by adding a little grated orange zest to 1 tablespoon of oil and letting it stand to pick up the flavor.


Loin of lamb, deboned rack of lamb, is extremely tender. It is not always out on view, ready cut, at meat counters. You might ask your butcher ahead of time to prepare boneless loins of lamb for you.



(Serves 4)


Blue Irish cheese and cider sorbet

1/2 pint of lemon sorbet

1 cup of apple cider

4 ounces blue Irish cheese, crumbled


Allow the sorbet to soften. Mix in the cider and Cashel Blue cheese. Re-freeze.


Apple compote

Juice of 1 orange

Juice of 1 lemon

1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar

4 green apples, skinned, cored and finely diced


Put the orange and lemon juice and brown sugar in medium-sized pot. Boil to reduce to a syrup.


Add apples and cook for one minute. Remove from heat and place apples on a flat tray to cool.


Irish bacon mash


4 large potatoes, peeled

4 ounces (4 strips) traditional Irish bacon, diced

2 ounces Irish butter

1/2 cup light cream

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste


Cook the potatoes in salted water until tender. Cool and then mash. Fry the bacon until crisp. Melt the butter. Add the bacon, hot melted butter and cream to the mashed potatoes. Add seasoning.


Port jus


1/2 cup chicken stock

3 tablespoons port wine


Heat the stock. Boil rapidly to reduce to sauce consistency. Just before serving, add the port.


Black pudding


1 tablespoon sunflower oil

8 slices Galtee Irish black pudding


Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the black pudding for two minutes on each side.


To Serve: Spoon mashed potatoes onto center of plate and place two slices of black pudding on top. Drizzle with Port Jus. Place the apple compote around the black pudding and top pudding with sorbet.




What a combination. The tender, luscious textures of the seafood combine with the crunchy snow peas to make your mouth cry out for more. Go ahead. This recipe like so many others in the book is light and healthful as well as delicious.


1/2 pound medium raw shrimp, shelled and deveined

1/2 pound sea scallops, halved horizontally

2 teaspoons minced ginger

1 teaspoon minced garlic

2 tablespoons chicken broth

2 tablespoons oyster-flavored sauce

1 1/2 tablespoons cooking oil

1/4 cup sliced water chestnuts

3/4 cup (about 3 ounces) snow peas, stem ends snapped off and fibrous strings



Pat shrimp and scallops dry with paper towels and place in a bowl. Add ginger and garlic; stir to coat. Let stand 10 minutes.


Make a sauce by combining chicken broth and oyster-flavored sauce in a small bowl.


Place wok over high heat until hot. Add oil, swirling to coat sides. Add shrimp and scallops; stir-fry until shrimp are slightly pink and the scallops are slightly firm, about 2 minutes. Remove from wok.


Add water chestnuts and snow peas; stir-fry for about 30 seconds. Return seafood to wok. Add the sauce; bring to boil and cook until sauce reduces slightly. Once shrimp begin to turn pink and curl up or scallops become firm and opaque, they're done. So take them off the heat as quickly as possible, or you'll wind up with tough, dry, overcooked shellfish that won't make your mouth cry out for more, but rather will make it cry, period.



Serves 5-6

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces

1 (16-ounce) package frozen mixed vegetables

1 small onion, chopped

1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms

1 large potato, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch cubes

1 1/4 cups water

2 tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

2 teaspoons chicken bouillon granules

1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper

1/4 teaspoon ground mustard

1/4 teaspoon crushed sage

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

Pinch of turmeric

1/3 cup nonfat dry milk powder

Fresh minced parsley


Rinse chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Combine chicken, mixed vegetables, onion, mushrooms and potato in a 3 1/2-quart slow cooker. In a small bowl, combine water, tapioca, lemon juice, bouillon granules, white pepper, mustard, sage, salt, garlic powder and turmeric. Pour over chicken mixture. Mix well. Cover and cook on LOW for 6 to 7 hours.


Stir in dry milk and cook 15 minutes. Sprinkle each serving with parsley.




1 package (10oz) frozen, chopped spinach

cooked and drained well

2 (6oz) jars marinated artichoke hearts - undrained

3 large cloves chopped garlic

1 package (8oz) cream cheese

1 cup parmesan cheese

1/2 cup mayonnaise

2 tbs lemon juice

1 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs

Mix above ingredients together in a baking dish (preferably glass). Bake at 375 for 25 minutes. Serve with veggies or crackers of your preference.




2 tablespoons walnuts

1/2 pound spinach, washed and trimmed

1 small clove garlic, coarsely chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup ricotta cheese

1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese salt and ground black pepper, to taste


Place the walnuts, spinach and garlic in the work bowl of a food processor. Process until finely chopped, scraping sides of bowl as necessary.


With motor running, pour in olive oil until a smooth paste forms.


Scrape the mixture into a medium bowl and stir in the ricotta, parmesan and salt and






It seems that everyone who digs flavorful, juicy cuts of beef wants to know how to recreate the taste of Outback's famous steaks at home. If that describes you, then I have good news, and even better news: This recipe will do it, and it's real darn simple. Just throw together a few spices and grab your top sirloin or rib eye or filet, and heat up a large frying pan. That's right, folks. You don't need to preheat the barbecue out back since Outback uses a flat indoor grill to get those delicious results.


From Top Secret Recipes:


2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon onion powder

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

dash coriander

dash turmeric

Use tongs to sear the edges of the steak.

Gravity prevents the steak from standing on edge without help.



1. Mix all ingredients together in a small bowl.

2. To prepare steaks with this seasoning: Preheat a flat grill or large frying pan over medium/high heat. Sprinkle some of the seasoning blend over both sides of each cut of beef. Grill the steaks on each side to your desired level of doneness. Be sure to use tongs to sear all the edges of each steak to a rich brown color. (http://www.topsecretrecipes.com) Makes about 4 teaspoons of seasoning.


Tidbits For a gourmet variation, add couple tablespoons of red wine to the pan on high heat after removing the steak. Stir the wine around to remove the browned reside from the pan (deglaze it), and when the sauce has reduced by a third or so, pour it over your steak -- flavor bonanza!




3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce

11/2 tablespoons rice wine or dry sherry

1 teaspoon rice vinegar

1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger

1 garlic clove, minced

1 tablespoon Chinese chili paste

Pinch white pepper

1 tablespoon dark sesame oil

4 boned and skinless chicken breast halves, all visible fat removed (1 pound),


Combine all ingredients except chicken in a baking dish and mix well. Place the chicken in the marinade and turn to coat evenly. Cover tightly and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or as long as overnight.


Prepare the coals for grilling or preheat the broiler. Remove the chicken from the marinade and discard the marinade. Grill or broil the chicken for about 3 to 4 minutes per side or until cooked through.



1 (16 oz.) block tofu(I used firm) 1 can evaporated milk or

1 lg. onion, chopped 13 oz. milk substitute

mushrooms (opt.) 8 c. cornflakes

1 1/2 to 2 c. chopped walnuts salt or Bernard Jensen's Seasoning

8 eggs or egg replacer (I used Lowry Season Salt and

Garlic Salt)

Original directions:

Mash one large block tofu in a very large mixing bowl. Saute finely chopped onion and sliced mushrooms in a little oil. Add to tofu. Chop walnuts and add. Break eggs into bowl. Stir together. Add evaporated milk. Stir in. Add cornflakes and salt. Bernard Jensen's seasoning to taste. (Can add 1 c. cooked rice if you have it on hand). Bake in a grated 9 x 13 pan at 350 for 1 hour. Freezes well. Serve plain or with mushroom soup on top or with catsup. Good in sandwiches.

Author's directions:

Put eggs, onion, and milk (I used 2% milk) and nuts in blender and blend. Mash the tofu and add to the cornflakes and rice (I used about 2 c. rice) in a big bowl. Pour liquefied mixture over the cornflakes and rice. Add seasonings/salt. Bake in a 9 x 13 pan that is lightly greased for 1 hour.



2 medium onions, sliced

2 crushed garlic cloves

4 celery

8 oz sliced carrots

1 large potato cubed

2 tbsp paprika

1 oz butter

can of red kidney beans (drained)

1/2 pint veg. stock

3/4 pint milk

2 tbsp cornflour

2 tbsp tomato puree


Serves 4


Fry onions, garlic, carrots, celery, potato and paprika in butter for 5 mins.

Add beans, stock, milk and puree.

Bring to the boil and simmer for 20-30 mins until tender.

Blend cornflour with a little water and add to casserole to thicken.



Serves 12

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 large fennel bulb, trimmed, feathery fronds reserved for garnish, bulb chopped

1 large onion, chopped

5 garlic cloves, minced

2 cups Valencia or Arborio rice

1 can (16 ounces) stewed tomatoes

1 can (14 1/2 ounces) vegetable broth

1 cup dry vermouth

2 teaspoons dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon saffron threads (or 1/4 teaspoon ground)

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 can (14 ounces) artichoke hearts, drained and cut into 1/2-inch wedges

1 large yellow or red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch chunks

1 1/2 cups frozen peas

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro


In a Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add fennel, onion and garlic and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in rice and cook for 1 minute. Add tomatoes with their juice, vegetable broth, vermouth, thyme, saffron and cayenne, and bring mixture to a boil. Stir in artichoke hearts and bell pepper and return mixture to a boil. Cover and simmer over low heat for 20 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed.


Stir in peas. Cover and continue to simmer for 2 minutes longer. Remove pan from heat and let stand, covered, for 5 minutes or until liquid has been absorbed. (At this point, paella may be cooled, covered and refrigerated for up to 24 hours before serving. To serve, reheat until hot, adding additional vegetable broth or water as necessary.)


Transfer paella to a serving dish, sprinkle with fresh cilantro and reserved chopped fennel fronds and serve.



1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened

1 (10 oz.) pkg Green Giant Frozen Creamed Spinach, thawed

7 oz. (2 cups) Swiss or Havarti Cheese, cubed

1 tsp. garlic power

Beat cream cheese until smooth in medium bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients. Microwave on HIGH for 4 to 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated, stirring once during cooking. Serve warm with crackers or French bread slices. 12 to 18 servings



1 Box Cherry Chip Cake Mix

1/4 Cup Water

1/4 Cup Butter Flavored Shortening, Margarine or Butter - Softened

1/4 Cup Brown Sugar

2 Eggs

1 Cup Chocolate Chips

Mix all the ingredients except for the chocolate. When finished, add the chocolate. The dough will be thick. Spread out into a 9x13 pan. Bake at 375 degrees for 24-27 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Frost with cherry flavored frosting.



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