Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Pasta with Clams and Tomatoes

By far, one of the best pasta recipes. And so simple.

From the book, Canyon Ranch Cooking, Bringing the Spa Home.


8 ounces of your favorite pasta (I used Farfalle)
13 ounces canned chopped clams, undrained
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves, pressed or mined
28 ounces canned ready-cut tomatoes, drained (I used a box of POMI)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
1 teaspoon dried sage, crushed
(I added as a topping chopped arugula--lots of it!)


1. Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling water until tender but still very firm. Drain thoroughly and return to the same pot. Add all the liquid from the cans of clams, reserving the drained clams to add later. Simmer until most of the clam juice has been absorbed, about 3 minutes.

2. While the pasta is cooking, heat the oil and garlic in a large skillet or saucepan just until the garlic starts to sizzle. Add the tomatoes, pepper, rosemary, and sage, mix well and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat and stir in the drained clams. And the mixture to the pasta and toss thoroughly. Serve immediately.

Serves 4


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Potatoes and Peas; Sukhe Aloo Mattar

Based on the recipe from "Pure & Simple, Homemade Indian Vegetarian Cuisine" by Vidhu Mittal.

This is a tremendous cookbook and I highly recommend that you add it to your collection! It is easy-to-understand and filled with beautiful photographs on every page.

This dish was wonderful and I had hoped there would be leftovers so that I could make a frittata with the potatoes and sea; alas, the three of us ate it all!


4 Potatoes, medium-sized, boiled, peeled, cut into 1" cubes (I used red and didn't peel)
1/2 cup Green peas, boiled (I used 1 cup frozen sweet peas)
2 tbsp Vegetable Oil
1 pinch Asafetida (I didn't have it so I didn't use it)
1 tsp Cumin seeds (I used ground Cumin)
3/4 tsp Ginger paste (I used ground Ginger)
1/4 tsp Turmeric poweder
1/2 tsp Red chili powder
2 Tomatoes, medium-sized, grated (I seeded and diced)
2 tsp Ground coriander
1/4 tsp Garam masala
2 tbsp Cilantro Leaves, chopped
1/4 tsp Cumin seeds
Salt and black pepper to taste


1. Heat 1 1/2 tbsp oil in pan for 30 seconds; add asafetida, cumin seeds, 1/2 tsp ginger paste, turmeric powder, red chili powder, and grated tomato; cook until oil separates. Add cut potatoes and mix well.
2. Add cilantro, salt, garam masala and cook for 5 minutes on low, stirring occasionally. Set aside.
3. Heat 1/2 tsp oil in a pan for 30 seconds; add cumin seeds, 1/4 tsp ginger pasta, green peas, salt and pepper; cook on low heat for 2 minutes.
4. Mix with prepared potatoes. Serve hot.

I served this with Roast Chicken and Caramelized Onions.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Canyon Ranch Bread

I quote from the book, Canyon Ranch Cooking, Bringing the Spa Home:

"We have been serving this coarse-textured, low-fat bread since the day we opened in Tucson. It is so popular with our guests that many of them order loaves of it to take home with them when they leave. It is especially good toasted and spread with a little of our Fitness Cheese or Fresh Apple Butter (both recipes are in this outstanding cookbook).


1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
1 cup unprocessed wheat bran
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3 tablespoons fructose
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup raisins
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 egg
1 tablespoon vanilla extract


1. Preheat the oven to 350.
2. Spray a standard-size (9 x 5 inch) loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray.
3. Combine the flour, bran. baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon in a large bowl and mix well. Add the raisins and mix again.
4. Combine the buttermilk, egg, and vanilla in another bowl and mix.
5. Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until moist.
6. Spoon the mixture into the prepared loaf pan and bake in the preheated oven for 45 to 50 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Place the bread, while still in the pan, on its side on a wire rack to cool.
7. Store, tightly covered, in the refrigerator.

It was delicious!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Stuffed Artichokes

I love artichokes.

I grew up eating artichokes.

My parents made them all the time. They were always the special appetizer at Christmas and Easter.

My brother, now a Poet Laureate and author of over 20 books of poetry, would always say "It might choke Artie but it won't choke Stymie". This quote from one of our favorite TV shows, The Little Rascals. AH, a poet's beginning begins somewhere!

I most often now use artichokes on pizza as pictured here:

Artichoke, Caper, Roasted Red Pepper, and Sun-dried Tomato Pizza
I last made Stuffed Artichokes on New Year's Eve. They were delicious.

Here is a basic and simple recipe for 2 (And please feel free to improvise):

1/2-1 cup fresh breadcrumbs
1/2-1 cup Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
3 garlic cloves; 2 whole and 1 chopped
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
(We also add cooked sausage or ground meat (if we have it around).
2 artichokes, trimmed, left whole, chokes removed (put 1/2 of lemon juice into each cavity)

Preheat oven to 400°F. Par-boil artichokes (I do this for about 30 minutes). Mix breadcrumbs, cheese, meat (if adding meat) and oil in medium bowl.  Mix in lemon juice, oregano, parsley, chopped garlic and lemon peel. Season with salt and pepper. Place 1 whole garlic clove into each artichoke cavity. Stuff artichokes (Do this by putting stuffing between leaves and into cavity). Bake in tomato sauce and 1/2 cup water till tender.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Soy Eggs

I have been making these for years.
People always enjoy them, especially if it is there first time eating one.

6 eggs
water to cover
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup water
lettuce (and cilantro)

1. Place eggs in cold water to cover and bring to a boil over medium heat. Then cook gently 10 to 12 minutes.
2. Cool eggs thoroughly under cold running water (5 to 10 minutes); then shell.
3. Combine sugar, soy sauce and water in saucepan. Then heat, stirring, to dissolve sugar.
4. Add eggs and baste to brown evenly. Simmer, covered, 1 hour, turning several times for even coloring.
5. Turn off heat and let stand, covered, 30 minutes more, turning eggs once or twice.
6. Cut each egg in half (or 4 wedges) with a sharp knife. Serve yoke-side up on a bed of lettuce (decorate with cilantro if desired). Sere with plum sauce.

Note: These eggs, also known as pot-stewed or red-stewed eggs, are eaten for breakfast or as a late supper dish. They are also served cold as an hors d'oeuvre.