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Portobello vs. Portabella – Garlicky Stuffed Portobellos

July 3, 2007


According to the portobello is:

  •  a “brown crimini mushroom in disguise” (sneaky!)

  • once the crimini grows to 4″-6″ in diameter it is now a portobello

  • can be called portobello OR portabella

  • can be grilled, oven roasted, or sauteed





I keep getting requests to make more main dishes and for some reason I keep craving vegetables! Over time I’ve noticed I’m losing my taste for red meat especially (bummer!) but I promise I’m gonna work in some heartier fare very soon. I’ve got a few dishes in mind and I just need to buckle down and make them. But for now try these! I don’t really like mushrooms but there is one way I do enjoy them and that is stuffed. Cooked portobellos are definitely a “meatier” mushroom, so for those of you out there who dislike mushrooms give this one a try. Pared with a salad dressed in a lemony vinaigrette, these would make a nice, light lunch.







10 medium sized portobello mushrooms, stems removed (2 reserved for the filling)

1/2 cup frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and chopped into bite size pieces

3 tbsp. chopped sundried tomatoes (in oil, reserve the oil)

1/2 cup freshly grated parmiggiano reggiano cheese

1/8 cup pine nuts

4 large cloves garlic, chopped

1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

4 leaves fresh basil, roughly chopped

4 tbsp. bread crumbs

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Up to a 1/3 cup olive oil, plus 1 tbsp. 




Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Using a basting/pastry brush lightly brush the outside of each mushroom with the tablespoon of olive oil. Using the same brush, lightly coat the bottom of a baking sheet. Place the mushrooms on the baking sheet and set aside.

Finely chop the 2 reserved portobello’s and, using a fork, combine with the artichoke hearts through the bread crumbs. Pour half of the olive oil over the mixture and season with salt and pepper. Mix with the for and taste. At this point you can add more red pepper flakes and salt/pepper, depending on your preference. If the filling is too dry add more olive oil. It should be very moist (if you still see dry breadcrumbs, this is a sign that you need more oil) but not oily.

Using a spoon, fill each mushroom so that the cap is completely filled and there is a nice mound on top (see pic). Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes or until mushrooms have turned dark brown and are fork tender. Allow to cool for a few minutes and serve.

Eggs w/Herbs de Provence and Asparagus

June 29, 2007






I’m back from my mini blog break!! June is always a crazy month for me. Grandma’s birthday, Mom’s birthday, Father’s Day, parent’s anniversary, friends’ birthdays and graduations too. So while my bank account has seen better days, I’ve been able to stay at home a few nights to do some cooking and do have some recipes to share! 


The other night I was craving breakfast for dinner which was a dilemma since I don’t really like breakfast!!! I know, I know…EVERYBODY likes breakfast. I can eat it for lunch or dinner but I don’t like breakfasty foods in the morning. Or maybe I should clarify – brioche and jam, maybe a cup of tea, or a chocolate croissant and some fruit… that’s a breakfast! Scrambled eggs, pancakes, bacon, fried potatoes, omelettes etc….just not really my thing. Probably because I’m not a morning person and my stomach takes awhile to wake up (along with the rest of me). There is ONE exception though….I will eat this kind of food in the morning when it is liberally doused with one of the following:  Tabasco, Tapatillo or Chalula (if you live in Southern California, you get this…lol). Anyway, I decided to try an egg scramble using asparagus that I had on hand and it turned out much better than expected! I added the yogurt  toasts on a whim and they were a really nice complement to the eggs…this turned out to be a pretty good dinner!!




4 eggs

3 tbsp. greek yogurt

1 tsp. herbs de provence


Freshly ground black pepper

1 pat of butter

2 tbsp.  fresh chives 



In a saute pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Whisk the eggs, yogurt, herbs de provence, and salt and pepper in a small bowl and pour in the pan. Cook until the eggs are scrambled to the consistency you prefer. Sprinkle the chives over the eggs and serve.


Yogurt Toasts

2 slices  toasted whole wheat bread

1 tbsp. greek style yogurt

1 tsp. chives



Spread the toasts with the yogurt and sprinkle the chives on top.


Ratatouille is coming!! Friday, June 29th

June 20, 2007





The chef who couldn’t cook and the rat who could!!


Pixar’s latest animated film is about a rat living in Paris named Remy who just isn’t satisfied with the “garbage” rats usually eat. He wants to be a chef!! He teams up with a chef who can’t cook and together they become the chef each longs to be. How cute is that!


It’s due out on Friday, June 29th. I can’t wait!!

Chicken Enchilada Casserole (again)

June 19, 2007



When I originally posted this recipe I didn’t include a picture. I made this again last night for some friends and finally took some pics.  I also made a few minor variations as I didn’t have all the ingredients on hand and it still came out great!!!








  1. I used 1 can of of cream of chicken soup and 1 can of cream of mushroom soup.

  2. I ran out of garlic so I used garlic powder instead.

  3. I added 3 tablespoons of tomato paste 



Click here for the original recipe/post….

Vanilla Pound Cake with Three Citrus Glaze

June 18, 2007





Don’t you love it when a you let your imagination run a bit and whatever you cook comes out great??? This doesn’t always happen to me….I created a very “imaginative” tasting sausage, broccoli and cheese breakfast strata the other day that went straight into the trash (the word “horrid” comes to mind). 😦


So, imagine my surprise when I whipped up something from scratch, using ingredients that were all on hand, and it came out great???


This is a great tasting poundcake. I used a syrup (poured over the cake and soaked it overnight) and a glaze so the cake is extra moist and very citrusy. If you are looking for a great basic poundcake recipe, this will do and it’s easily modified. You can leave out all the citrus or make it even more citrusy by adding lemon zest or even lemon oil, substitute almond extract for the vanilla,  maybe add poppyseeds or sliced almonds….there are so many possibilites!! 


So here’s the story……while shopping at Trader Joe’s sometime last week I was drawn to a bin of fragant ruby red grapefruit. I normally don’t eat grapefruit, not sure why, I just never really eat it. They looked and smelled delicious but even then I only bought one. I brought it to work with me the next day, intending to eat it as a snack but, for some reason, I never ate it. Instead, I just kept picking it up and smelling it. The fragance was very strong and calming, I couldn’t seem to put it down! So, I kept it at my desk for several days, inhaling the wonderful aroma. Then, inspired by this strangely hypnotic grapefruit, an idea began to form in my mind.


Since I love poundcake and my favorite is usually a lemon glazed poundcake it didn’t take me long wonder how a grapefruit glazed poundcake would taste. I’m sure that this has been thought of before but it was a new idea to me so why not try it? Once I got started on the glaze though I realized I didn’t have enough juice for the syrup and the glaze so I added the juice of an orange and a lime. This was definitely an experiment but the combination of all three fruits tasted surprisingly good.


So here it is. My recipe for Vanilla Pound Cake with Three Citrus Glaze. Try it out and let me know what you think!


Vanilla Bean Pound Cake




2 1/2 cups sugar

1 cup butter (softened)

2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla paste

5 large eggs

3 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup evaporated milk




Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour all sides of a 12-cup fluted cake pan.

Beat sugar, butter, vanilla and eggs on high for five minutes until color becomes a pale yellow. Mix flour, baking powder and salt together. Beat flour mixture into sugar mixture, alternating between 1 cup of flour mixture and 1/3 cup condensed milk until it is all combined into a smooth consistency.

Pour into pan and bake for 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.


Citrus Syrup and Glaze




1 large grapefruit

1 medium orange

1 small lime

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 1/2 cups powdered sugar 


Juice the fruit and strain to remove any pulp. You should have about 1 cup of juice. Reserve any extra for another use.


For the syrup


Combine the granulated sugar and 1/2 cup of juice in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir until sugar is dissolved and you have a light syrup. Keep warm and set aside.


For the glaze


Whisk 1/2 cup of the juice with the powdered sugar until you have a thick glaze. It should be thin enough to be pourable but not too runny either. 


With the cake still inside the pan, using a ice pick or something similar, poke deep holes all over the bottom and sides of the cake. Pour the syrup over the cake and let sit for a few hours. Once the syrup is absorbed unmold the cake from the pan and place on a cooling rack. Pour the glaze over the top of the cake and let it drip over the sides.  Let the glaze dry for about 20 minutes then serve.