Cider Brined Turkey with rich kettle gravy

Cider Brined Turkey

With Thanksgiving quickly approaching, I figured it was time to share my recipe for a perfectly roasted, juicy turkey.  Since we will be spending it at my mother in law’s house and I will be released from turkey duty, my family was overjoyed that we’d be having a turkey dinner early.  Along with the turkey we had an amazing sage sausage stuffing with dried cranberries, celery root and potato mash, and cranberry/bing cherry sauce; all of which will be posted soon. Turkey can be rather dull unless you add flavor in some way.  Some heavily season and deep fry it(I’ve … Continue reading

Tortilla Soup

Tortilla Soup

Between setting the clocks back and the change in the weather, there’s no doubt that fall has arrived.  While still ridiculously mild compared to most of the country, there’s still a noticable difference here in Southern California.  So on that note I decided it was time for a spicy tortilla soup with all the trimmings.  While some versions might be easier than this one here, such as opening up various cans and adding them to a pot, this one will excite your taste buds.  I’m blessed to live in an area that has a wide variety of chiles available, but if you can’t … Continue reading

Cheesy Meatloaf Pockets with creamy onion gravy

Cheesy Meatloaf Pockets with creamy onion gravy

It’s the never ending question for all home cooks- what to do with leftovers that’s different than just having leftovers?  Such was my dilema last night, facing a partially devoured meatloaf.  I had made Not Your Mama’s Meatloaf  and really wanted to do something different with the leftovers rather than eating the same dinner twice.  While my daughter and wife were perfectly content to eat it again, it’s not my son’s favorite meal.  So how do you make a ten year old love meatloaf?  Hot Pockets! To make it a little more interesting, I decided to make a gravy to dip … Continue reading

Fettuccine with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

Fettuccine with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

There are two ingredients that I love more after roasting; red bell peppers and garlic.  Roasting the peppers over a flame until blackened and blistered, then removing the skin and seeds enhances their natural sweetness and they are miles apart in their flavor from the jarred variety.  Garlic as well is transformed when it’s roasted in the oven, becoming soft and sweet and far more subtle than in it’s raw state.  So when I was coming up with a new sauce, I knew I wanted to use both of these ingredients roasted to perfection. This is such a simple sauce but it does … Continue reading

Honey Marinated Chicken Thighs

Honey Marinated Chicken Thighs

This is a recipe I came up with when I bought chicken thighs on sale but couldn’t decide on what to do with them.  I wanted a sweet marinade but also wanted a spicy curry taste, so I combined the two.  After a little tweaking of the flavors, I came up with this marinade.  While it tasted a little potent straight from the mixing bowl, the final flavor  was fantastic.  And the color of the final dish…a deep dark reddish brown; as if it had been painted on.  Enjoy! In a mixing bowl I whisked together 1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce, … Continue reading

Simple Carnitas

Simple Carnitas

This is an old recipe of mine that’s been pretty popular on Allrecipes.com the last few years and I decided it was time to share it here.  It’s the easiest method I know for tasty carnitas and by cooking it in water rather than lard, the fat is knocked down to just 10 grams per serving.  Salt is the main seasoning and this recipe also has a subtle orange flavor in the background and because the meat is mild, it makes wonderful barbecue pulled pork sandwiches as well.  While you might be inclined to omit the orange, I assure you it’s very mild and adds … Continue reading

Poblano Corn Chowder

Poblano Corn Chowder

I’m the only one I know who picks a 95 degree day to make corn chowder.  To my defense; when I bought the corn the other day, I didn’t realize we were going to have a heat wave in Southern California that rivaled mid summer.  But that’s what happened.  Knowing that my house was going to be a pressure cooker didn’t stop me from my task.  I had a recipe in my head and I had to go forward. This delicious soup, (my wife said it was one of the best I’ve ever made) gets a little kick from roasted … Continue reading

Blood Orange and Mixed Greens Salad with blood orange vinaigrette

Blood Orange and Mixed Greens Salad with blood orange vinaigrette

I love roaming my local Farmers’ Market sampling and smelling the best the local growers have to offer.  Fresh produce, breads, nuts and cheeses entice you to taste everything.  Most of the time I know what’s going to be offered; fantastic dandelion greens and pea shoots from one booth and every kind of tomato imaginable from another.  But sometimes I spot something I wasn’t expecting.  As I walked down to the end of the first row of booths, a small stand was set up with nothing but some ugly looking oranges and bottles of a red juice.  Immediately I knew what they were, blood oranges.  Normally we don’t see … Continue reading