30 October, 2011

P i Z Z a @ h o m e

My (and my oldest son's) favorite homemade pizza is the Napoletana (below).  If you're not an anchovy fan let me just apologize in advance.  I happen to love them in many things and have even been known to eat them plain!  I prefer them most in my salad dressings, melted in my pasta sauces, and on top my favorite pizza. Here's how you make a Napoletana pizza...
Start by making your favorite crust.
top with your favorite marinara 
now mince up 3-4 anchovies and dot all over the pizza
a couple handfuls of capers
a sprinkling of oregano
a little bit of mozzarella cheese
a drizzle of olive oil over the top
Bake on top of a hot pizza stone for a perfect crust. This pizza looks like it has a handle. ha ha

                                            And for my younger sons--pepperoni of course. :)

14 October, 2011

Spring Rolls

I love Asian food, particularly Thai.  When we eat at our favorite Thai restaurant we order spring rolls with peanut dipping sauce for an appetizer.   These are incredibly easy to make at home.  A trip to the Asian market is in order to get a few of these ingredients like the rice papers, Thai basil, and the sweet chili sauce.  That part if always fun for me though.  It's an adventure!  Spring rolls are healthy, lo-cal, and delicious.  You can also use pork instead of the shrimp or forego the meat and make it veggie only.

Find the rice wrappers in your local Asian market.     Above is how they look dry.

  • cooked Jasmine rice
  • 8 rice wrappers 
  • 8 large cooked shrimp - peeled, deveined and cut in half
  • shredded carrot
  • bean sprouts
  •  chopped fresh Thai basil
  • chopped fresh cilantro
  • leaves  of korean lettuce, chopped

  • Run a rice paper until water for a few seconds to soften. Lay wrapper flat. In a row across the center, place 2 shrimp halves, a handful of rice, basil, carrot, bean sprout, cilantro and lettuce, leaving about 2 inches uncovered on each side. Fold uncovered sides inward, then tightly roll the wrapper, beginning at the end with the lettuce. Repeat with remaining ingredients.  Serve with peanut sauce.  For the sauce I used sweet chili sauce mixed with a little crunchy peanut butter.  This sauce is terrific.

07 October, 2011

The Spanglish Sandwich

I've seen the movie Spanglish several times.  I think I've seen nearly every Adam Sandler movie out there.  He's a great father in the movie and just an overall sweet guy who puts up with a lot from his nuts-0 wife.  I like to see him play that type of role. 

Tea Leoni plays the selfish, narcissistic, mother who you love to hate.  We can only laugh at her horrible exploits knowing it's all  purely fiction (although I'm sure the situation does exist somewhere). 

Adam Sandler has a scene where he's making himself a sandwich at home.  If you're watching it and happen to be hungry, well,  I bet you'll want to make that sandwich.  It was created by a famous French chef especially for the movie.  


3 slices of bacon
2 slices of a thick roll or bread (or of your choice)
2 slices of monterey jack cheese
1/2 tsp of mayonnaise
2 pieces of butter lettuce
2 slices of tomato
1 egg
salt and pepper to taste
In a medium-sized pan over medium heat, fry up your bacon. When it’s done, remove from the pan and drain on a paper towel. Place your monterey jack cheese on one slice of bread and place it under the broiler until melted (I did it in a conventional oven). Take the other slice of bread and spread the 1/2 tsp of mayonnaise (you can obviously add more if you like).
If you have a non-stick pan, melt butter over medium heat and fry your egg.
If you’re using a skillet like I have pictured above, drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil in the pan.  When it’s hot, crack your egg and fry until done.
Assemble the sandwich, placing the bacon on the slice with the cheese and the lettuce, tomato and fried egg on the other. Sprinkle with a bit of salt and pepper and bring the two slices together. Cut in half and enjoy.

01 October, 2011


Basically, you can be assured that if my family is eating dinner at an Italian restaurant of any consequence, and there is calamari on the menu, it will be ordered, consumed, and enjoyed in typical Poe family fashion.  My boys LOVE calamari!

I wanted to do calamari for an appetizer before my pasta main course tonight. When I walked in my friendly neighborhood Publix and asked for squid, i did get some looks.  The seafood chic kindly escorted me to the freezer where the frozen squid live.  She looked at me questionably as she handed me the package of freezin' cold squid.  It was 2 lbs. of squid and tentacles for about $15.  Remembering the price of a calamari appetizer,  the $15 seemed like a bargain.  This would make enough for about 8 people

So the day you want to cook the calamari you need to thaw them in some cool water for a couple hours. 

Here's the recipe: serves 6-8

Olive oil or canola for deep frying
1 1/2 to 2 lbs. calamari, cleaned (you can fry the tentacles too if you like) That is my hubs favorite part!
1 c. all purpose flour
1/2 c. dry breadcrumbs (I use Progresso Italian)
1/2 t. salt
Marinara sauce (recipe below)

Preheat your oven to 200 degrees  and line a rimmed baking tray with paper towels. 

Pour enough oil in a large, deep saucepan to come about a third of the way up the sides and heat to 350.

Cut the calamari crosswise into 1/4 inch thick rings in a medium mixing bowl.  combine the flour, breadcrumbs, and salt.

In batches, add the calamari to the flour mixture and toss just to coat.  Add the coated calamari to the oil and deep fry until golden brown, about 2 minutes.  Do not crowd the calamari in the oil.  Using a slotted spoon, transfer the calamari to the baking sheet and keep warm in the oven while frying the remainder.  Let the oil reheat to 350 between batches.  Put it on a platter and serve with marinara. 

 Good can of San Marzano tomatoes (such as Cento)
small can tomato paste
1 t. fresh or dried basil
 break the tomatoes apart into pieces in your pot. add the tomato paste and let it simmer for 25-30 min.  Add basil last.   Serve with the above calamari, or mozzarella sticks, or as a base for your favorite pasta sauce.