Thursday, December 7, 2017

stuffed Kabocha ( little winter squashes)

It is grey and cold outside . Back to fall and winter dinner
I found this little squashes at a small farmer market they did call them another name but I know them  thru googling) as Kabocha squash . very sweet and delicious


4 kabochas 
2 lbs ground pork
3 small red pepper chopped
2 cups onions chopped
2 tbs tomatoes paste salt pepper 
1/2 a cup parmesan cheese
1 tsp cumen 
a few drops shiraca sauce

precook the Kabochas in the oven for a while till they are easy to open.
cut the top of the Kabochas and a little bit of the bottom so they will stand straight
take the seeds of the Kabochas out and get as much flesh as you can.

sweat the onions and the peppers 

mix the pork ,the onions and pepper , the kabochas flesh. the tomatoes paste.
add the cumen, salt, pepper and sirracha.
sprinkle with a little olive oil and the parmesan

cooked in a 350 F oven for about 30 minutes. ( check for readiness

I serve the kabocha with some rice ad a green salad.

The Kabocha freeze very well.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

hot pepper jelly.

I have been wanting to make pepper jelly for a long time, I had some in "the noisy oyster " with fried calamari a little while ago. it was delicious. I really liked it. I was not sure how to make it when I saw a recipe in "Palate".  The peppers jelly in" the noisy oyster " was a smooth jelly with no pieces in it, the recipe from Parade has tiny little pieces of pepper I liked the look of it . i decided to make it.

Hot pepper jelly


large red pepper
large yellow pepper
3 jalapeno pepper
3/4 cup white wine vinegar
4 cups white sugar
1 package sure jell pectin (1.75 ounces)


Prepare 6 ( 8 ounces ) jars
Cut the Jalapeno in tiny little pieces, keep the seeds ( do not rub your eyes)
take the white inside ridges off the pepper, get rid of the seeds, cut in tiny pieces.
In a big heavy pans put all your pepper ,add the vinegar
in a bowl mix the sugar and the pectin
add the sugar mix to the pan with the peppers.
bring to a boil, mixing ,
boil for 3 to 4 minutes
Laddle the jelly in the jars.
top and cool.

this jelly can be kept in the refrigerator for about  one month . It can be used with neat or fish , on sandwiches it can be used for a base for a hot vinaigrette. it is delicious.

the original recipe called for 6 jalapenos , noway I could have eat anything with 5 Jallapenos ,i used only 2 , it is quite hot enough for me. the next time i will make it , to give away i will make it with 6 Jalapeno.
Next time I will processed the Jelly so  it can be kept a long time.

try this recipe you will love it . Miam miam,


Sunday, February 12, 2017

corn chowder

It is very chilly tonight in NCharleston.
thought a nice warm soup will be nice
I bought quite a lot of corn on sale at Bilo so here we are  tonight dinner is Corn Chowder


5  slices of bacon.
1/2 of a small onion
all ready cooked potatoes cut in small pieces about 2 cups
a few sliced carrots
3 corn cobs
chicken stock. Enough to cover the vegetables
1 cup heavy  cream.
2 cups chopped ham
a litlle cayenne pepper or a few drop sciracha sauce


Peel  and cut the potatoes in small pieces and cook till ready but still firm
Remove the kernels from the corn  and scrape the cob to get the milk.
In a large pot brown the bacon add the ham, the vegetables all the corn including the cob and the milk. Add the stock,salt and pepper, Cayenne pepper. Cook for about 15 to 20 minutes .
Add the cream .

Miam Miam bon appetit

printable recipe

Monday, January 2, 2017

bay scallops and truffles risotto

New Year Eve 2017
Choosing to spend the evening at home  by myself I decided to make a nice little comforting dinner. I had some bay scallops left in the freezer from my Christmas dinner and some truffles, Malory and Erick gave to me for Christmas., I had  some chicken stock and Arborio rice, every things needed for Risotto. and what is more comforting than a rich creamy risotto.
I had  some white wine left  in the fridge  so here we are risotto it is.


bay scallops about 2 cups
any good white wine on the dry side (Chardonnay is fine)
3 cups of chicken stock
1 cup Arborio rice
1/2 a stick butter ( or more)
1 shallot
1/2 a truffle ( the taste of truffle is strong so be careful how much you add)

salt and pepper.


peel and chop the shallots
cut the truffles in small pieces
dry the scallops and saute them in a pan with butter salt and pepper about 10 minutes ( do not overcook)

put the 3 cups of stock in a pan and heat up , keep on slow medium  heat

In a heavy saucepan saute the shallots and the rice in butter
saute the rice for about 10 minutes till it become less translucent
add 1/2 cup of wine cook 10 more minutes.
Now add about 1/2 cup of the hot chicken stock over the rice to cover it.
Cook the rice till the stock is absorbed.
add salt and pepper to your taste
then add some more stock too cover the rice and continue to add more stock, about 1/2 cup making sure every time all the stock has being absorbed
you should used about all the stock

The operation should not take much more than 30 minutes.
.when the rice is cooked ( do not over cook it must be creamy but not mushy)  add the scallops to warm them back,.
add the truffles.


the rice should be nice and creamy and you should not have to add any cream but I do any how just because I love the taste  cream

Before you add the scallop and the truffle you have a basic risotto and you can from here use your imagination and make different risotto. parmesan risotto is specially delicious.

Risotto is supposed to be hard to make but after you get the technique of adding more stock when the rice is dry it because easy . they will tell you, you have to stay with it and mix it continuously every time you add stock, I don't.  it is supposed to be eaten right away but I learn from my sister Brigitte that you may do your risotto and freeze it  keep it a little" al dente". and when you thaw it you add the last amount of hot stock,

beat it and add some cream. it is a little  restaurant secret.  where  it will be difficult to stay over a risotto when you have a lot of other dishes going on.

a table bon appetit

The truffles may be bought on line . they are a little expensive but well worth it .  you do not have too add to much truffle to give the dish a delicious flavor. there are differents Web sites where you can   buy the truffles" D'artagnan" is a

Friday, January 29, 2016

beef' "daube a la provencale."

 I have not posted to my blog for a very long time. I did not have a laptop anymore .I just had a little tablet and it was not easy to work on it. yeah I have my laptop back. .
It has been very chilly in South Carolina so it is a good time to make comfort food. I had some stew meat so I decided to make a beef " Daube".

A "daube" is a stew made with red wine and different vegetables and Braised for 2 or 3 hours. like all braised meat it permits to used the part of the meat that are tought. it is very easy to make and not expensive

The daube used to be made in a "daubiere" beautiful container made of Terra cota . Maman Jean my grand mother who used to make "Daube "very often  did not have a "Daubiere"  she used a "cocote" ou "Faitout" . these saucepans were made to cook food slowly. I wish I had a daubiere they are so beautiful, but I don't have one so I used my black iron pan which is perfect. The idea is to have a heavy pan that does not permit evaporation. if you don't have a pan that has a tightly fitting cover it is always possible to put a piece of foil between the pan and the cover . now let's go to our daube.


1bl of beef stew meat cut in square cubes between 2 or 3 inches. it is better to have a meat with a little fat
1 large onion
3  carrots diced
1 strip orange peel ( without any pith)
1 bay leave
 a few peppercorn ( if you have)
about 3/4 of a cup of red wine
2 tbls olive oil
about 3 or 4 slices of bacon cut in small pieces.
2 garlic cloves
1 cup beef or chicken stock.
salt and ground pepper
I almost forget the olive that make the Daube really provencale.


Slice  the onion
clean the carrots and slice   (   keep I/2 of the carrots for the daube)
put the meat and the vegetables in a deep bowl ( not in a metal bowl)
add the orange peel
the bay leaves and peppercorn ( or pepper)
one garlic clove
add the wine
cover the bowl and put it in the refrigerator overnight.


the following day heat the oven to 300 degrees
  drain the wine .
separate the meat from vegetables
in the casserole  add  the olive oil and brown the bacon
remove the bacon and brown the meat.

add the wine and simmer 5 minutes

Put the bacon back in the pan
add the slice carrots and the garlic
the rosemary , the thyme and the bay leaves.
add a little more of the orange zest
add the olives
add the stock or the water
salt and pepper
bring to a quick boil
cover the casserole and put it in the preheated oven.

cook  for 2  or 3 hours . ( check the meat for tenderness)

Remove the bay leaves the thyme and rosemary.

 Serve with Pasta potatoes or polenta.
I like mine with boiled potatoes.

a table bon appetite


_ You may use the vegetables you used in the marinade for the Daube but I like to add new carrots  so they are not so soggy.and I don't like the big sclices of onion. it is up to you.
_ you could marinate the meat only 6 hours if you don't want to wait overnight.
_Do not forget to add the zest of orange it really give the Daube  a special little provencal taste.
_The size of the pieces of meat as you see on the first picture , were a little small, it was the beef I already had in my refrigerator , it is better to use   pieces of meat of 2 or 3 inches.

printable recipe
pprintable recipe

Friday, May 1, 2015

bay scallop poached in butter with Collard and carrots.

I have not post in my cooking blog for a while but the spring and the coming of nice weather seem to inspire me every year.
There was a sale on the small scallops at Bilo so I had to buy 2 packs. I will love to use  fresh scallops but for now these frozen scallops will have to do . they are delicious too.


about 12 scallops
2 carrots finely sliced
1 small bunch of collard chopped and blanched for a few minutes
a few mushrooms sliced.
1 clove of garlic chopped
1 green onion finally chopped
!/4 cup of chopped parsley
1/2 glass of white wine
2 tbs butter



cook the vegetables for about 5 minutes
add the wine

Add the scallops and poach for about 6 minutes

Served my scallops with some rice you could use couscous too

A table . Bon appetit

Notes:  do not cook the scallops too long they will be tough

I have made this recipe before with Leeks instead of collards ( the leeks do not need to be blanched)
I usually use the vegetables I have on my hands.

The recipe is for only one person but the number of portions may be increased very easily.

printing recipe

Friday, September 26, 2014

shrimp gumbo

Yesterday, on Facebook, a friend send me a link on a group of people who live in the Ozark and whose descendants where French and talked Paw Paw French. the very sad thing was that this version of French was disappearing from the isolated old mine region. a thousand people used to speak Pawpaw French . One of the reason why they lost their language was because they were punish as children when they speak it in school . how sad. well  all this made me think of  my French heritage  through New Orleans and since I had a few shrimp in my freezer I decided to cook a shrimp Gumbo.
Now I had a few nasty gumbos before, just stew vegetables throw together without must taste to it.
well this is not it. this is the real delicious thing. It is all in the roux. what is a roux? it is simply butter or oil and  flour you cook together, just the same basic mix for white sauce and bĂ©chamel. but for a gumbo you cook the roux to a blonde or dark point and that is what is going to give your Gumbo a most delicious nutty taste.

here is a gumbo that is so delicious you will cook it over and over again and every body will love you for it

That recipe is for 2 persons only but very easily to increase for a big group..


For the roux

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup onion
1/2 cup celery
1 cup tomatoes
1/2 green pepper
1 branch of thyme
1 bay leave
cayenne pepper ( as much as you want)
1 tbs file powder
1 tbs file powder.

1 lb of shrimp


The roux is really important in this recipe
In a sauce pan melt the butter
when the butter is melted
add the flour.
we are making a blond roux or dark roux .
we  cook the roux on medium heat till it get a very nice light brown color
this is very important the mix of flour and butter get a very nice nutty taste that give the combo a delicious taste.
it takes about 45 minutes or more to make the roux.
Cook and mix ounce and a while. and make sure you do not burn your roux.
while your roux is cooking clean and prepare your vegetables.

when the roux is ready add it to a hot pan
sautĂ© the pepper, the tomatoes, and the celery with the roux for about 10 minutes.

 Add  the chicken stock ,the shrimp, the tomatoes, the bay leave, the Cayenne and the file 
cook for another 15 minutes till the shrimp are cooked.

the shrimp gumbo is very good served on rice.
That pic is horrible I will replace it next time I make this dish

A table, miam miam, bon appetite


The" file" can be added to the gumbo or serve on the side.
"File " is mainly dried ground Sassafras . it could be omitted but it really give the Gumbo its distinct taste.
"File" can be found in the spice isle in almost every market.

"File" is mainly dried Sassafras and it give the gumbo its distinct taste.