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Photos, Recipes & CookTales For Those Who Enjoy Cooking

Smoked Pork Chop & Spicy Cabbage.1


Serves 2

A CookTale
This is a redux of a November 2011 dinner. The Smoked Pork Chop is an addition. Together they definitely complemented each other. The Smoked Pork Chop is another delicious item available at our wonderful Smokehouse of The Katskills ready to devour, I simply warmed it in the pan with the Cabbage. A huge YUM.

Serves 2

A CookTale

INGREDIENTS for the Spicy Cabbage

Pancetta (2-1/4″ slices & diced to 1/4″ pieces)
A medium head of Savoy Cabbage (halved & cut into 1″ ribbons)
3 Garlic Cloves (thinly sliced)
1 tsp of dried Thyme (or to taste)
Kosher Salt & Black Pepper
A pinch of Red Pepper Flakes
1/2 Cup of Chicken Broth + 1/2 Cup of Vermouth


1. Fry the Pancetta in a large pan until the fat has rendered. Remove from the pan to a small bowl leaving the fat behind. Add the Garlic & saute in the Pancetta fat, then add the ribbons of Cabbage, toss & saute to combine.

2. Add the Chicken Broth & Vermouth, the Thyme, Salt & Pepper, Red Pepper Flakes, cover & cook over high heat as long as it takes for the Cabbage to really tenderize, which should take 20 minutes or so. Keep your eye on the progress. Return the Pancetta to the pan & toss together.

Spicy Boneless Thighs with Black Olives & Mushrooms


A CookTale

Originally posted in 2012, Consider it a reminder to give it a try,

4 Chicken Thighs boneless, about 4 ounces each
2 Sweet Italian Sausages
Kosher Salt & Black PEPPER
Red Pepper Flakes (to taste)
8 Green Sicilian Olives (halved)
2 Bell Peppers (roasted & quartered)
1 Large Onion (sliced)
2 oz of Fondue de Poulet Gold (available on-line from More than Gourmet)
1/2 C of White Wine
8 oz of Button Mushrooms (sliced)
14 ounce can of Whole Tomatoes (juice separated)
2 TB of EVOO
Parsley chopped


1. In a large casserole, heat the EVOO & saute the Onions until tender & translucent. Set aside in a large bowl.

2. Halve the Sausages & cook them until almost tender. set aside.

3. Add the Mushrooms & saute until tender & brown. Add the Roasted Peppers & the Tomatoes, saute & add both to the large bowl.

4. Add the Chicken Thighs, & cook for about 7 minutes to each side. Set aside with the Sausages.

5. Deglaze the pan with the White Wine, scraping up the pan particles. Add the Fondue de Poulet Gold & whisk them together.

6. Return all the vegetables & the Green Olives to the casserole & simmer for about 15 minutes to amalgamate the flavors together.

7. 15 minutes before serving time, return the Chicken Thighs & the halved Sausages to the casserole, & simmer over low heat.

8. To plate, add a Chicken Thigh & 2 half Sausages. surround the plate with the vegetables & sauce.


Caviar Pasta


Serves 2 Deliciously

A CookTale

A once a year four star event occurred last evening, and it was well worth waiting for. The photo speaks for itself.


4 oz Tagliatelle
4 oz good quality Caviar (we used Sevruga)
6 TB good quality unsalted Butter
5-6 TB Crème Fraiche (you could probably substitute Heavy Cream)
1/2 TB Lemon Juice
2 TB White Wine or Vermouth
Salt to taste
Black Pepper, coarse grind


1. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.

2. In a small skillet, heat 3 TB of Butter until melted. Add Lemon Juice and Wine. Cook together for about 2 minutes. Add the Crème Fraiche, a touch of Salt and some Black Pepper. Cook over low to medium heat for a couple of minutes until slightly reduced.

3. Cook Pasta until a slight bit more than al dente (we cooked it 6 minutes exactly). Drain. Return to pot and add 3 more TB of Butter. Mix well. Add 1 heaping teaspoon of the Caviar. Mix well.

4. Add the Wine-Butter-Cream mixture and mix well. Serve immediately on two plates, spooning the rest of the caviar on top
of the Pasta.

Braised Rib Pork Chop
RECIPEServes 2

A CookTale

Last evening, Davis conquered Goliath! Traditionally I’ve grilled Pork Chops and more often than not they have been tough.
This time I decided to try and oven braise
them in a simple flavored liquid…and it worked! After 25 minutes in a 300 oven, they were tender and flavorful. At plating I spooned each with a Demi Glace sauce.
That will be my new traditional method.


2 1″ rib Pork Chops.
Salt & Pepper liberally sprinkled
1 c of Vermouth
1/4 c of EVOO

For the sauce
1 c of Chicken Stock
2 oz of Demi Glace Gold
2 TB of Butter


1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F
2. Liberally season the chops. Add them to a casserole dish. Add the EVOO and Vermouth mixture half way up the dish.
3. Braise for 25 minutes or until medium rare.
4. For the sauce, In a small saucepan add the Chicken Stock, Demi Glace and Butter. Bring to a boil and simmer for a few minutes to emulsify.


Serves 2

A CookTale

Every country has its version of this simple shrimp dish. This one is titled, Southern Shrimp Scampi
credited to Kim Severson of the NY Times. Looks tasty and was tasty.

2 large Garlic Cloves, finely chopped
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp finely ground Pepper
1 lb Shrimp, 16-20 count
1/2 C Wine or Vermouth
3 TB Butter
2 tsp Lemon Juice
2 TB chopped Italian Parsley
1/4 tsp Red Pepper Flakes


1. In a bowl, toss Garlic, Salt and Pepper with the Shrimp, which may be refrigerated, well covered for a few hours.

2. When ready to cook, heat EVOO in a large sauté pan over high heat until it shimmers, then add Shrimp and move shrimp around in the pan for little over a minute, or until the color just begins to turn from translucent.

3. Remove Shrimp, reduce heat to medium-high and add Wine, scraping up any bits in the pan. Cook for a few minutes to reduce, then add Butter and swirl the pan to melt.

4. Put Shrimp back into pan, stir about at most a minute to finishing cooking and add Lemon Juice.

5. Remove to serving dish, sprinkle with Parsley and red Pepper Flakes, adding more Pepper if desired. Serve over Rice or Pasta or as is.

Salada Caprese over Melanzana


A CookTale

Is a detailed recipe required? I don’t believe so. But instructions for grilling the Eggplant follows.


2 Tablespoons salt, plus more for sprinkling
2 medium eggplants
About 1/3 cup olive oil

1.In a large bowl dissolve 2 tablespoons of salt in 1 cup warm water. Add 2 quarts cold water. Set aside.

2.Trim the eggplant. Peel it, if you like, and cut it into 1-inch thick diagonal, crosswise, or lengthwise slices. Put the slices in the salt water, weigh them down with an upside-down plate, and let sit 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat a charcoal or gas grill to medium-high heat (you can hold your hand about an inch above the grill for 3 to 4 seconds).

3. Drain the eggplant and pat it dry with paper towels or a clean kitchen towel. Lay the slices on a large baking sheet or tray. Brush one side with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Lay the slices oiled-side-down on the grill. Close the lid if using a gas grill and cook until grill marks appear, about 5 minutes.
Brush the top sides of the slices with oil and sprinkle them with salt. Turn the slices over, close the lid on a gas grill and cook until grill marks appear on the other side and the eggplant is very tender, about 5 minutes. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Sweetbreads with Vermouth Caper Sauce

Serves 2

A Cooktale

The week prior to July 14th, Cathie announced, “for my birthday week I want Sweetbreads”. Sweetbreads it shall be. and last evening they were! She was a happy person & I received kudos for a dinner well done, Not “well done”, she requires, her Sweetbreads “never well done”.


3/4 Pounds of Veal Sweetbreads
Milk to cover
4 cups Water
Kosher or Sea Salt
Fresh Black Pepper
Juice of half a Lemon plus 1 TB of Lemon Juice
1/4 to 3/8 C of drained Capers
4 TB of Clarified Butter


1. The day before cooking, place the Sweetbreads in a bowl or small container, cover them with Milk, and allow them to soak in the refrigerator overnight. Remove the sweetbreads, discarding the Milk, and trim any veins or dark bits. Rinse them well and set aside.

2. Place the Sweetbreads in a small pot, cover with water, and add a big pinch of salt and the juice of half a Lemon. Add the Sweetbreads, bring the water to a boil, and blanch them for about 5 minutes. Remove the sweetbreads and plunge them into an ice bath.

3. Line a small sheet pan with a kitchen towel and place the Sweetbreads on the towel in a single layer. Fold the towel over them to cover, place another sheet pan on top, and weigh it down – a heavy pot or a few cans of tomatoes work well. Place in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours.

4. If your Sweetbreads are large, slice them into medallions. season with lots of Salt and Pepper.

5. Melt the Clarified Butter in a heavy bottomed skillet and cook the Sweetbreads over medium heat until golden brown, about 1-1/2 minutes to a side. Do not overcook them. Place the browned Sweetbreads on a paper towel-lined plate and set aside, tenting loosely with foil to keep warm. Add the Capers to the sauce.

6. Plate and serve. Our side dish was Butternut Squash lightly mashed and combined with Maple Syrup, Butter and Heavy Cream.


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