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Photos, Recipes & CookTales For Those Who Enjoy Cooking

Daily Archives: June 11, 2011

RECIPE  Honey Duck  with Cannellini Beans
Serves 2
We buy prepared duck leg confit in a vacuum six pack at our fine food store Adams Farm Market in Kingston, NY.
Saves a great deal of time & energy, & they are superior to what I could concoct.

2 duck legs
4 tbsp clear honey

For the beans:
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 oz. white wine or vermouth
1 sprig fresh thyme
About 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
About 1 (15.5 oz.) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 oz. fresh parsley, chopped
1 oz. butter


1. Preheat oven to 400F.
2. To make the beans, heat the olive oil in a pan and sauté the onion and garlic for a few minutes. Add the wine, thyme and tomatoes, and bring to a simmer for 15 minutes. Add the beans and simmer for a further 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Add the chopped parsley and butter to finish.
4. Place duck legs in a roasting pan. Drizzle on the honey & roast the legs for about 10 minutes until heated through, basting the honey glaze a few times.


Place the beans on the plate & top with the duck legs. drizzle any extra honey glaze on top.

RECIPE  Wild  Salmon Carpaccio with Red Onion, Capers & EVOO.


1LB of Wild Salmon
2 TBS of capers1 diced red onion
Lemon juice


Thinly slice the salmon
Layer the salmon on a serving plate
Add lemon juice & S&P
Add Capers & Diced red onion
Allow the finished dish to marinate for 1hour
Serves 4

RECIPE Crab Cakes with a Side of Dijon Mayonnaise

Serves 2

I bet I scanned a dozen Maryland Crab Cake recipes to find the most authentic & most traditional. Except for minor variations such as bread crumbs vs cracker crumbs, dry mustard vs jarred Dijon, celery, onions or none, or one egg vs two, they were all basically the same. Therefore our recipe is derived from the search & I believe it’s as authentic as it gets, Almost all Crab Meat, no fillers, kept the mixture light in taste & relatively low in carb & calories. Instead of whole eggs I used only the whites. Actually the eggs simply provide the binding. The proof was in the tasting & we both thoroughly enjoyed the dinner.
As an aside when ready to form into Crab Cakes the mixture made nine 2 ounce patties.

RECIPE For the Crab Cakes


1 Pound of Crabmeat, picked over for shells
1 tsp of Old Bay seasoning
1 TB of Worcestershire sauce
2 Eggs Whites
2 TB of Mayonnaise
1 TB of Colmans Dry Mustard
1 Dash of Pepper Sauce
2 tablespoons Saltine Cracker Crumbs
1 tsp of White Pepper or to taste


1. In a small bowl add the Old Bay seasoning, Mayonnaise, Worcestershire Sauce, Dry Mustard, White Pepper, Egg Whites & Pepper Sauce. Whisk it to a smooth consistency.
2. Add the Crabmeat & 1 TB of Cracker Crumbs & gently mix it all together.
3. Heat the oven to 425〫 F.
3. With a 2 ounce size ice cream scoop lightly sprayed with Olive Oil Pam, pick up a scoop full & place it on a foil covered cookie sheet, then gently flatten it to a pattie.
4. Place the cookie sheet onto the highest oven rack & bake for about 15 minutes, taking an occasional peek.
5. After the 15 minutes, turn the oven to broil for a few minutes to add color to the Crab Cakes.
6. Remove & plate.

RECIPE White Asparagus with a Lemon & OliveOil Dressing

Serves two
24 Fresh White Asparagus as thick as you can find them
Lemon & Olive Oil Dressing.* Recipe follows
Finely chopped Tarragon leaves, optional but a tasty addition.


1. Peel & cut off the tough stringy ends of the Asparagus.
2. Fill a deep saute pan or pot with water.
3. Bring to a boil & reduce to a simmer.
4. Add 1TB of Salt & the Asparagus & simmer for 18 to 20 minutes. This unusual amount of time properly cooks the Asparagus & eliminates any stringiness.
5. Remove & plunge into ice water t
o retain their crispness. Drain on a paper towel.
6. Place the Asparagus in a large bowl & add just enough of the Lemon Olive Oil Dressing to lightly coat the spears.
7. Place a Romaine Lettuce Leaf on the plate. (this is optional) & add the Asparagus
8. Sprinkle the choppedTarragon Leaves on top & serve.
RECIPE Lemon & Olive Oil Dressing.
1/4 tsp of Lemon Zest Salt
1/4 Cup of EVOO
1 TB of fresh Lemon JuiceMETHOD1. In a lidded jar combine the Lemon Juice, Lemon Zest Salt & EVOO.
2. Cover & vigorously shake to blend.
3. This dressing can be stored in the refrigerator for up to three days.
METHOD Lemon Zest Salt.
Patricia Wells  Salad As a Meal.

Combine the Salt & Lemon Zest in a spice grinder & process until finely mixed.
The leftover can be stored in an air tight container.

RECIPE Lightly Seasoned Soft Shell Crab.

No Breading, No Flour, No Deep Frying,
Just Soft Shells simply prepared & the result are Crabs that taste like Crabs.

Serves two


2 Medium to large Soft Shell Crabs
Kosher or Sea Salt
Pepper & if available Lemon Pepper
Alleppo Pepper or finely ground Red Pepper
4 TB of Olive Oil
2TB of Butter


1 Be sure that your fishmonger prepared & cleaned & the Crabs.
2. To the Crabs add Salt, Pepper & Alleppo Pepper & 2 TB of the Olive Oil.
3. Heat a saute pan to high, add 2TB of Olive Oil & 2 TB of Butter.
4. When the Oil & butter stop hissing it’s time to add the Crabs.
5. Lay them on their shell side & cook for
2-1/2 to 3 minutes, the shell will turn red.
6. Turn the Crabs onto their underside & cook for another 2-1/2 to 3 minutes.
7. Remove to a serving plate & dribble a few TBs of the Butter Oil mixture onto the Crabs. If you like you can garnish the plate with chopped Chives or Parsley. I would have if I had some!
8. Ready to serve.



RECIPE Cauliflower Roasted to a Char

Serves 2


1 Head of Cauliflower cut into bite size florets
2 TB of Olive Oil
Salt & fresh Pepper
1/4 Cup of finely chopped Parsley


1. Heat the oven to 450〫F
2. Toss the Cauliflower florets with Olive Oil & add Salt & Pepper.
2. Transfer to an oven proof deep sided dish or a cookie sheet, in a single layer.
3. Oven roast for about 25 minutes or until the florets are tender, browned, & slightly charred.
4. Allow to cool for a few minutes & plate.

RECIPE Striped Bass Filet’s With a Coconut Curry Sauce

1 TB Canola of Vegetable Oil
1 Medium Onion thinly sliced
4 Garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp. Curry Powder
1 Can unsweetened Coconut Milk
1/2 Cup of canned Chicken stock
2 Medium Carrots, peeled, cut into matchstick-size pieces
2 Striped Bass filets (5-6 oz. Each)
4 Scallions thinly sliced optional


1. Heat the Canola or Vegetable Oil in heavy saucepan over medium heat.
2. Add onion, Garlic & Curry Powder.
3. Saute mixture until onions are translucent, about 4 minutes.
4. Mix in Coconut Milk & Chicken Stock; bring to boil.
5. Reduce heat & boil until liquid is reduced to a thin sauce consistency.
6. Add Carrots; simmer until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes.
7. Remove from heat; keep warm.
8. Preheat broiler. Place filets on a baking sheet, add Salt & Pepper.
9 Broil filets until just opaque in center, about 7 to 8 minutes.
10. Using a metal spatula, transfer fish to plates. Spoon sauce over fish.
Spoon sauce over fish.
11. Sprinkle with scallions.option

On Wednesday Cath & I drove to NYC to visit two extraordinary food emporiums. Eataly on 

23rd Street & Buon Italia in Chelsea Market on 15th Street. I thought I've seen it all but both experiences were incredibly mind boggling to this food junkie. From farm produce to sweets from seafood & fish to meats & charcuterie from cheeses to pastas, it was more than my mind & my eyes could absorb.
The food displays tempted you so there was the urge just to reach into the display case. 

The only drawback was the incredible crowds. You would think you were at the MOMA not at
a retail store.
We drove home laden down with fresh Morels, Pea Ravioli made right in front of your eyes.
Imported Bucatini Pasta, Squid Ink, Buffalo Mozzarella, Rosemary Breadsticks & never ever frozen Yellowfin Tuna which comprised last night's dinner.
 We could have continued to shop, until the bankruptcy police dragged us away.

In no way was this your average daily shopping experience.

RECIPE  Yellowfin Tuna with Black Sesame Seeds & Asian Sauce.

Serves 2

INGREDIENTS  For Yellowfin Tuna1pound of Yellowfin Tuna
1 TB of Peanut Oil
Pickled ginger optional
Parsley & Sesame seeds for garnish
1. Cut the Tuna into 1 1/2″ pieces.
2. In a large non stick frying pan heat the Peanut Oil.
2, When the oil is just starting to smoke, add the Tuna a few pieces at a time.
3. Sear untouched for no more than 15 seconds.
4. Turn the other side & sear again untouched for another 15 seconds.
5. Continue until all the Tuna is seared.
6. You will have lovely Tuna on the very rare side.
7. Plate & drizzle with the Asian sauce & sprinkle on Sesame Seeds.
RECIPE For Asian Sauce


2TB of Soy Sauce
2TB of Mirin
1TB of Rice Vinegar
1/4 cup of Rice Wine or Sherry
1″ nob of Ginger grated
2 Garlic Cloves diced
1tsp of Sesame Oil
3 TB of Scallions white & green diced into 1/2 pieces.


1. Whisk all the ingredients together.
2. Drizzle on to the plated Tuna & bring what remains to the table.