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Fall 2006 Picnic Recipe Collection


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Once again we (ok, I) will assemble a collection of all those great recipes we were fortunate enough to sample from the fall, 2006 picnic. Feel free to post them here, or PM or email them to me, and I'll put them together in some fashion that will hopefully make sense, and may even look nice enough to print out as a souvenir. We had at least 10 chilis, two pig roastings, two red velvet cakes, and...I'm not going to try to list everything else...we have some migh-tee-fine cooks, fermenters, cheesemakers and bakers! I hope that Chefs Wabeck and Stachowski are willing to share their secret pig roast recipes for us too!

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Pressure Cooker Chili

I stole the cooking technique from Alton Brown but the ingredients are a result of my inadequately stocked pantry. Also, all measurements for spices/herbs are approximate. I don't use measuring spoons for this kinda stuff.

1.5 lbs chuck blade, cubed

1 lb boneless pork chops, cubed

1 lb leg of lamb, cubed

2 cans Guinness beer

2 tbsp cumin seeds

1 tsp coriander seeds

1 tbsp smoked paprika

1 tbsp dried oregano

6 dried cayenne peppers (with seeds removed)

2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa

1 tsp cinnamon

1 28oz can diced tomatoes

1 14oz can kidney beans

2 chipotles in adobe sauce

2 cups beef stock

1 cube beef demi glace

Salt to taste

Sear all cubed meats in batches so they are well browned. Deglaze pot with all the Guinness and add all the meat back. The liquid should just barely cover the meat. Lock down the top and bring it to pressure. Let it cook for about 45 mins, all the while keeping the pressure so that there's just a bit of a whistle.

While the meat's cooking, make your chili powder. I usually use a combo of several dried chilis but all five stores I went to were out - so I had to make do with just cayenne. You should try anchos, new mexicos, etc to get some sweetness. Anyhow, Toast the cumin, coriander and dried peppers until fragrant. Grind in a coffee mill along with oregano and paprika.

De-pressurize your cooker and open it up. The meat should be soft enough that the fibres come apart simply from the pressure of the back of a spoon. Remove all the meat to a bowl and shred the meat, then add it back to the liquid. Add the tomatoes, kidney beans, ground spices, cinnamon, and cocoa. Chop up the chipotles and add them to pot. Salt to taste. Add beef stock and demi glace and let it cook down for about an hour over low heat. It shouldn't be too watery and the stock/demi glace should create a rich texture and smell.

Serve with toasted challah bread.

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Shrimp Remoulade (adapted from original in Saveur magazine, November 1997)

3 1/2 tbsp. finely chopped fresh parsley

1 3/4 stalks celery, finely chopped

5 medium cloves garlic, peeled and minced

7 tbsp. red bell pepper, finely chopped

7/8 cup Zatarain's creole mustard (sold by Balducci's and Harris Teeter)

(using any other mustard affects taste)

1 1/2 tbsp. Szeged Hungarian paprika

2 tbsp. grated horseradish

10 tbsp. red wine vinegar

3/4 tsp. Tabasco

2 tsp. Worcestershire

medium pinch Cayenne

Sea Salt

Freshly ground pepper

3 1/2 tbsp. good olive oil

4 lbs. 15-20 count shrimp (fresh if possible), peeled and deveined

5 cups mesclun/baby greens

lemon wedges

1. Combine parsley, celery, garlic, red bell pepper, mustard, paprika horseradish, vinegar, Tabasco, Worcestershire, salt, black pepper and Cayenne pepper in a medium bowl and mix well. Slowly add oil and whisk until sauce is smooth. Store in airtight bowl and refrigerate for 24 hours.

2. Bring a large stock pot of water (bit of salt) to boil, add shrimp for about 90 seconds or less, then quickly remove shrimp and plunge into bowl/sink/pot of ice. When doing this it is very tricky and you want to have shrimp that are actually barely cooked in the very middle when removed and immediately stop the cooking by bathing them in ice. I use a five pound bag of ice and my hands to do this. It is VERY easy to overcook shrimp.

3. When shrimp have cooled (about 20-30 minutes) drain them, then coat and mix with the remoulade sauce. Refrigerate them again in an airtight container for two hours.

4. Spoon and arrange shrimp over baby greens in individual serving bowls or plates garnished with lemons. Alternatively, spoon over lettuce in a very large serving bowl. Serve within one hour of removing from refrigerator otherwise sauce begins to break down a bit. Ideal is 30 minutes after removing from refrigerator.

Serves 10.

One of the best dishes was the Country Captain chicken. I did not notice who made it but could you please post the recipe? Thanks.

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This is the noodle and cheese casserole recipe I made for the picnic. I made a double batch. It really doesn't require double the amount of butter, though I did it that way anyhow :) . Normally I use flat egg noodles, but I ended up using the curlier kind for this because that's what I had bought.

The yogurt sauce that goes with it is just about 2 cups of non-flavored yogurt drained in a colander for several hours. Then the yogurt is combined with a mixture that has been pounded together (I use mortar and pestle): 2 Tbsp. of finely chopped mint, a garlic clove or two, and 1/4 tsp salt. I don't usually use the sauce for the casserole when it's served hot. It goes better with the casserole served cold.

This is my turkey chili recipe (I didn't bring any garnishes to the picnic). During one of the test runs, I got sidetracked by events on a message board (not this one :) ) and ended up with the beans fully cooked before I started the rest of it. I ended up putting it together largely backwards from the normal approach; hence the name. Starting with the beans improved the product, I thought.

Backass Turkey Chili with Beans


1 lb. rio zape beans, previously soaked in water to cover by 1 inch (or substitute other dried dark red or kidney beans)

1 Tbsp. epazote [optional]

1 Tbsp. Mexican oregano

¼ cup dried onions

Put the soaked beans and their liquid, along with the epazote, and additional cool water to cover by an inch, in a heavy pot with a lid. Add 1 Tbsp. oregano and ¼ cup dried onions, stirring to combine thoroughly. Simmer, uncovered, over low heat for 2 – 2 ½ hours, until the beans are tender.

Near the end of the beans’ cooking time,

Cook in a heavy skillet, drain and crumble:

3 slices turkey bacon

Add to the same skillet, cook, and drain:

2.5 – 2.75 lb. ground turkey thigh meat

Add turkey and then crumbled turkey bacon to bean mixture

Add to turkey-bean mixture and mix thoroughly:

1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes

1 (12 oz.) bottle Dos Equis XX beer (or other medium-bodied beer), previously opened

1 (15 oz.) can fat-free beef broth (or 2 cups homemade beef stock; or substitute chicken or turkey broth)

1 Tbsp. Hula Girl chipotle-habenero sauce (or other hot sauce; to taste)

1 or 2 long hot red peppers, split partially, lengthwise

1 Tbsp. dried Mexican oregano

2 Tbsp. hot chili powder

1 Tbsp. chipotle pepper powder

½ tsp. chipotle pepper flakes

¼ tsp. cayenne pepper

¼ tsp. habanero pepper flakes

1 tsp. coarsely ground black pepper

pinch freshly grated nutmeg

Sautè in 2 Tbsp. olive oil until softened:

3 medium Anaheim chilies, stemed, seeded, & chopped

4 medium jalapenos or Fresnos (or combination of the 2), stemmed & minced (w/seeds)

1 habanero, stemmed, partially seeded, and minced

Add cooked peppers to turkey-bean mixture and stir to combine,

Then sauté in 2 more Tbsp. olive oil:

1 medium-large yellow onion, chopped

4 medium cloves garlic, minced

2 bunches scallions, chopped (white & light green parts; dark tops reserved)

Add onions and garlic to turkey-bean mixture and stir to combine. Get mixture to a steady simmer and cover. Simmer, covered, for approximately 90 - 120 minutes, adding additional water if too much boils off.

[before serving, remove split red peppers and either discard or chop and add to chili mixture.]


scallion tops

grated cheddar cheese

chopped tomatoes

additional crumbled turkey bacon

sour cream

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My Carolina BBQ Sauce is from this website, with a few small modifications to adjust spiciness (and in this case to not include the meat). Usually when I make the sauce I don't bother to heat it at all since it's served alongside the pulled pork (I don't use the sauce that the pork cooks in usually as it doesn't store all that well) but tried heating it this time to see if it would stay in solution better. It didn't. That's also why there were some onions around that were Carolina BBQ flavored.

As I was talking with someone about (Jacques maybe?) there are two kinds of Carolina BBQ sauce one with ketchup/tomato paste and one without, so it was good to see both there. (Un)fortunately the pigs were so juicy after being cooked that they didn't need any BBQ sauce at all.

The banana pudding was from a cookbook put out by my parent's church using member submissions. I'll post it later.

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Recipes for the corn/avocado and sweet potato salads are below.

Corn and Avocado Salad (adapted from a recipe by my friend and NYC-based caterer Mindy Heiferling -- www.mindyheiferlingcatering.com)

Ingredients: corn, pure chili powder, safflower oil, salt, pepper, cumin, cilantro, avocado, limes and a little water.

Get fresh corn if possible. Frozen will do. (If you use fresh corn: one ear usually yields 1/2 cup kernels. I used about 20 or so ears of corn).

Remove husks and corn silk and slice the kernels off of the cob.

Toss kernels with safflower oil (maybe 1/4 cup per 4 cups of corn), a few tablespoons water, and salt and pepper.

Add the chili powder and ground cumin and some cayenne to the corn. (I used pure chili powder and also ancho chili powder).

Put the corn on sheet pan(s) and bake at 400 degrees until the corn is golden around the edges. Don't let it dry out.

When ready to serve, add diced avocado, chopped cilantro and lime juice.

(Note: I didn’t measure the spices, I just kept tasting (with a clean spoon) until it was very spicy but still allowed you to taste the corn. When I make this again I’ll try to let the corn get a little more golden in the oven).

Sweet Potato Salad (originally from a Martha Stewart cookbook and then posted on www.wellfed.typepad.com and I’ve modified it slightly)

For the Dressing

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1 tablespoon ketchup

1 1/2 teaspoons sugar

1 large garlic clove, minced

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

3 dashes hot pepper sauce

2 dashes Worcestershire sauce

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the Salad

2 large or 3 small, sweet potatoes, peeled and diced

1 red bell pepper, seeds and ribs removed, chopped

1 jalapeno, chopped finely

3 tablespoons whole cumin seeds, toasted in a dry skillet

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro


Cover and bring a large pot of water to a boil.

Add the sweet potatoes and cook until they can be easily pierced with a fork, but still offer some resistance, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain and place in a large bowl.

While the potatoes are boiling, make the dressing:

In a medium bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lime juice, ketchup, sugar, garlic, mustard, red pepper sauce, and Worcestershire sauce. Season with salt and pepper.

Pour the dressing over the cooked sweet potatoes while they are still hot.

Then add the diced bell peppers, jalapeno, and cumin, but don't add the cilantro until the potatoes are cooler and you are about to serve. (Note: I made about 3 batches)

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"Ole Timey Banana Pudding"

3 1/2 Tbsp plain flour

1 1/3 cup sugar

Dash salt

3 eggs, separated

3 cups milk

1 tsp. vanilla

1 (12-oz.) pkg. vanilla wafers

6 medium bananas

1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp sugar

1 tsp vanilla

Combina flour, sugar (1 1/3 cup), and salt in a heavy saucepan. Beat egg yolks; combine egg yolks and milk, mixing well. Stir into dry ingredients; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until smooth and thickened. Remove from heat and stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla. Layer 1/3 of wafers; slice bananas and layer over wafers. Pour 1/3 of custard. Repeat layers twice. Beat egg whites adding suar and vanilla. Spread over pudding. Bake at 425 for 10-12 minutes.

The custard can be made more safely in a double boiler, but having a heavy saucepan works if you don't have a double boiler. Stirring constantly isn't a suggestion, it's a requirement. It also shouldn't be stirred too quickly though as you don't want to froth it up. I used a slotted spoon and a non-slotted spoon to crush up any flour clumps to make sure they got dissolved before anything started to thicken. I didn't get my meringue to turn out, so that got tossed unfortunately.

As stated above, this is from "Pleasantly Delectable", a church fundraiser cookbook from my parents church, Mt. Pleasant UMC. Really, when you're talking about what to bring to a pig roast, a southern church cookbook was the first thing I thought to look in :-)

ETA: I also know everything we did to the pig for Team AGM other than the salt/sugar rub we used. Would people be interested in what was basically done to the pig?

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Admittedly stolen from Martha

Pumpkin Cupcakes

Martha says: Makes 18

Pam's experience: Makes 24


2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon coarse salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1 cup packed light-brown sugar

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled

4 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 can pumpkin purée (15 ounces)


1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice; set aside.

2. In a large bowl, whisk together, brown sugar, granulated sugar, butter, and eggs. Add dry ingredients, and whisk until smooth. Whisk in pumpkin purée.

3. Divide batter evenly among liners, filling each about halfway. Bake until tops spring back when touched, and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes, rotating pans once if needed. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool completely.

Note: Most recipes suggest cream cheese frosting. In a time crunch I used store bought. Martha did not provide me with a recipe. In lieu of effort on frosting, I spent time decorating - just simple green sugar and some good ole candy corn pumpkins, to look like a tiny little pumpkin patch.

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Team AGM Pig preparation:

Approximately 48 hours prior to pig cooking:

- Butterfly pig. Jamie did this with a large knife and the heel of his hand basically. We split our pig all the way through the head, as opposed to the other team. Not sure if this would make a difference, but without a split head it would make it difficult to clip the clips needed for the caja china (which the other team didn't have as they had lost them/didn't pick them up.

- Rub a mixture of salt and sugar onto the skin of the pig. Jamie was originally going to brine the big but went in this direction in stead and wasn't certain on the exact proportion or amount of mixture. Basically it's the same process as the beginning of a country ham (though the ham is left to sit in this mixture for much longer).

- Let it sit in this mixture for 24 hours.

Approximately 24 hours prior to pig cooking:

- Make a mixture of amaretto, course salt, 7 spice powder, cracked black pepper, and minced garlic. I can't give the exact measurements, but it ended up being around a pint of amaretto total, maybe 3/4 of a cup of salt, 1/4-1/2 cup 7 spice powder, 1/4 cup cracked black pepper and 1/2 cup minced garlic. Jamie tossed in what he thought looked right. Mix this up in a blender to try and get the solid ingredients into as much liquid form as possible. Strain the mixture.

- Using an injector (basically a very large-bore hypodermic needle), inject the mixture into every part of the pig that could possibly hold liquid. This includes both the front and back legs, both sides of the ribs (being very careful not to pierce the skin when injected between the ribs and skin, shoulders, tenderloins, etc. If it looked like muscle or fat, it got amaretto mixture injected into it.

- Take around a pound and a half or two pounds of bacon and around a pound of beef fat (from the trimmings from around the prime rib area) and lard it into the pig using a larder. Again, this was done everywhere it looked like there was meat, though there had to be a bit more meat than for the ameretto mixture as you have to be able to get the larder into it. Jamie: "If you can fit more fat into the pig, you should." Eric and myself: "We've gotten all the fat in that we can" Jamie, taking the larder and shoving more fat in the pig: "No, no, there's still more room for fat"

- Take some dried plums and put those into everywhere you can find to shove plums. This includes making some slits along the tendloins and ribs to put plums into. As well, I made probably 20-25 of them into a paste using the ribs as my mortar and my hands as my pestle, and then coated the spine and upper rib area with that paste.

The next morning:

- Rack the pig on the caja china's rack and cook. Adam can explain this better than me I'm sure, but basically you light the charcoal in two piles and let it burn down until it's gray. Spread the charcoal out and then in one hour add more charcoal, one hour after that more charcoal, and then 30 minutes after that more charcoal. Get rid of the ashes, flip the pig, add more charcoal, and cook the pig until the skin is the desired doneness, about an hour I believe.

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Jamie: "If you can fit more fat into the pig, you should."

So fun. I had my doubts about the amount of fat we larded that piggie with, but the man was right. Not an ounce too much.

The stuff I brought:

Beer-Thyme Mustard (almost verbatim from A Pinch Of

1/4 cup brown mustard seeds

1/4 cup yellow mustard seeds

3/4 cup flat amber beer

1 Tablespoon mustard flour

1 Tablespoon dried minced onion

2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves

1/2 cup cider vinegar

1 teaspoon salt

Soak the mustard seeds in the beer overnight. About 20 minutes before you are ready to make the mustard, stir the mustard flour, minced onion and thyme into the soaked seed mixture and allow to sit. Place the mustard mixture to a blender (or food processor) along with the vinegar and salt. Grind until the consistency of a paste, with some seeds remaining visible. Transfer to a glass jar, cover and refrigerate 4-5 days before using.

Gouda (from Home Cheese Making)

I can't find my copy of this for some reason. It's basically a washed-curd, brined cheese, which means the curds are rinsed with warm water prior to pressing, then after pressed, brined for 12 hours. air dried for 3 days, then waxed and put into a 50F fridge to age (in this case for 5 months)

Homebrew Beer: Oktoberfest (there wasn't much of this so only a few ppl got a taste)

My recipe, a hoppier, slightly higher alcohol german-style ale (festbiers are supposed to be lagers, but I have no way to lager my beers).

Homebrew raspberry mead:

Was my first attempt at mead, and the raspberry puree was added in an attempt to rescue what I deemed to be an undrinkable normal dry mead. The result turned out ok, but nothing to write home about.

If anybody wants more details on any of the above, just let me know and I'll talk your ear off.

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I was stumped over what dish to bring to the picnic. Inspiration hit when I read some of the comments on this thread. So I searched for a suitable recipe as a starting point and found this one.

I am happy that so many of you enjoyed my first attempt at making a terrine. So here is my recipe for...

SPiced hAM Terrine

1 cup finely diced onion

2 T unsalted butter

4 cloves garlic finely chopped

1 t dried thyme leaves

1 T salt

½ T whole black peppercorns

1/2 t whole allspice

1/4 t fresh ground nutmeg

1/8 t ground cinnamon

1 bay leaf

1/2 cup heavy cream

2 eggs

3 T apple brandy

½ lb. chicken livers

1 lb. Fatty pork shoulder (ground finely)

20 oz. of SPAM® (12 oz. ground finely and 8 oz. cut into 1/2" dice)

handful or so of roasted pistachios (shelled)

~ 1 lb. of bacon (sliced)

Sweat onion in butter in a skillet over low heat until soft. Add garlic and thyme and let cook for a minute or two. Put onions in a large bowl and place on ice to cool.

Place all spices in a grinder and grind finely. Add to cool onion mixture along with the cream, eggs, and brandy. Whisk until well combined.

Clean chicken livers of connective tissue and chop finely.

Add ground pork, ground SPAM®, and liver to the cream mixture and mix well with your hands. Fold in SPAM® cubes and pistachios.

Line the bottom and sides of a terrine mold (loaf pan) with the bacon leaving an inch or two over hanging the sides. Fill the mold with the meat mixture and bang the mold against the counter to pack. When full fold the bacon over the top and use any extra slices to cover the top completely. Cover terrine with plastic wrap and chill for 24 hours.

Bake at 325F in a water bath until the internal temperature is 155F (about 2 hours). Remove from the oven and let rest on a rack for about 30 minutes.

Place a piece of cardboard or another terrine mold on top and put 3 cans (about 1 lb. each) on top of that. Chill the terrine with the weights until completely cold (few hours).

To remove set in hot water for about two minutes and then run a knife around the outer edge and invert onto a serving dish. Cut and enjoy.

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(Lithuanian Bacon Buns)

Makes ~ two dozen small buns

~4 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour

1 package (2¼ teaspoons) instant yeast

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup milk, warm

4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, melted

2 large eggs

16 ounces bacon (I used Niman Ranch bacon)

1½ large onions, chopped

salt (as needed, it will depend on the saltiness of the bacon)

1 egg yolk

1 tablespoon cream or milk

In a medium-sized mixing bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, combine 3 cups of the flour, the yeast and the salt. Add the milk, melted butter and eggs and mix together. Knead for 6 to 8 minutes (by hand or in a mixer with a dough hook), adding flour as necessary to make a soft, but elastic dough.

Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl (or leave in the mixer bowl), cover with plastic wrap, and let the dough rise for 1 hour, or until doubled in volume.

While the dough is rising, cut the bacon crosswise into ¼-inch pieces and combine with the onions in a large sauté pan. Cook, stirring frequently until the bacon is crisp and the onions are well browned. Be careful not to burn the bacon!!! Drain off the fat and then finely chop (with a knife or in a food processor) the mixture. Taste and add salt if needed. Set the filling aside to cool.

Turn the risen dough out onto a very lightly greased or floured work surface and pat it into a ½-inch thick circle. Cut out circles of dough with a 2¼-inch biscuit cutter. Gather up leftover dough and repeat the flattening and cutting, getting as many small circles as possible. With your fingertips, flatten a small circle of dough to ~4-inches in diameter and place a teaspoon of filling into the center of the dough. Pull the dough up around the filling, pleating and pinching the top to seal well. Place the filled buns seam-side-down onto a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet. Repeat with remaining circles of dough. Cover and let the buns rise until very puffy looking, about 1 hour (if your kitchen is warm; longer if they're in a cool spot).

In a small bowl, beat the egg yolk with the tablespoon of cream/milk. Brush this mixture over the tops of the buns and bake them in a preheated 375F oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until they're golden brown. Remove the rolls from the oven and allow them to cool briefly on a rack. The buns are best served warm.

Based on recipe from Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads (one of my favorite bread cookbooks!)


Hazelnut and Fig Bread with Fennel Seeds and Rosemary

Makes 2 large loaves

~7 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon salt

1½ teaspoons instant yeast

2 tablespoons fennel seeds

2 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped

2¼ cups water, hot from the tap

1 cup hazelnuts, toasted

1 cups dried figs, roughly chopped

Mix 6 cups of the flour with the yeast, salt, fennel and rosemary in a mixing bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer). Add the hot water and mix thoroughly. Knead by hand or in the mixer with a dough hook for 8 to 10 minutes, adding flour as needed to form a soft but elastic dough. Add the hazelnuts and figs and mix just until they are incorporated

Place the dough in an oiled bowl (or leave in the mixer bowl), cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise for ~ 2 hours or until doubled in size.

Transfer the risen dough to a lightly floured work surface, divide it half and form into rounds (or batards). Transfer the shaped dough to a parchment-lined or lightly-oiled half-sheet pan, cover with lightly oiled plastic wrap, and allow to rise until doubled, ~1 hour, depending on the warmth of your kitchen (it may rise more slowly in a cool kitchen, but don't worry, a long rise will give the loaf more flavor).

Bake in a preheated 400F oven until the loaves are golden brown, 35 to 45 minutes. Cool bread on a rack completely before slicing.

Recipe adapted from Jeffery Hamelman’s Bread, A Baker’s Book of Technique and Recipes (another one of my favorite bread cookbooks, but I don't recommend it for beginning bakers.)



(Italian Salami and Cheese Bread)

Makes 1 large loaf or 2 small loaves


½ cup (2.25 ounces) unbleached, all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon (.33 ounce) instant yeast

1 cup (8 ounces) whole milk or buttermilk, lukewarm (I used buttermilk for the bread I brought to the picnic)


4 ounces dry salami (or other similar meat – bacon, pancetta, spam, pepperoni, chorizo, sausage, etc.)

3½ cups (16 ounces) unbleached, all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon (.25 ounce) salt

1 tablespoon (.5 ounce) sugar

2 large eggs, slightly beaten

¾ cup (6 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature

¾ cup (6 ounces) provolone (or other similar meltable cheese, I used half mozzarella and half Parmesan because that was all I had on hand), coarsely shredded or grated

For the sponge, stir together the flour and yeast in a bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer), add the milk (buttermilk) and mix thoroughly. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 1 hour.

While the sponge is fermenting, dice the salami into small cubes and sauté it lightly in a frying pan to crisp it slightly.

Add the eggs, flour, salt, and sugar to the sponge and mix until the ingredients form a coarse ball. If there is any loose flour, dribble in a small amount of water or milk to gather it into the dough. Mix for about 1 minute, then let it rest for 10 minutes. Divide the butter in 4 pieces and work into dough, one piece at a time while mixing. After kneading for 6 to 8 minutes, the dough will change from sticky to tacky and eventually come off the sides of the bowl. If not, add more flour to make it do so.

When the dough is smooth, add the meat pieces and mix until they are evenly distributed. Then gently mix in the cheese until it too is evenly distributed. Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl (or leave it in the mixer bowl) and cover the bowl with plastic wrap.

Let the dough rise at room temperature for about 90 minutes, or until the dough increases in size by at least 1½ times. (Alternately, you can immediately shape the dough, put it in the pan(s), cover and refrigerate overnight. The next morning, allow the pan(s) of dough to sit at room temperature for 2 to 3 hours before baking as directed below.)

Remove the risen dough from the bowl and leave as 1 piece for 1 large loaf or divide into 2 pieces for smaller loaves. Shape dough and place in 1 large (9x5”) or 2 small (8.5x4.5”) pans that have been oiled with spray oil. Mist the top of the dough with spray oil and cover loosely with plastic wrap.

Let the shaped dough rise for 60-90 minutes, or until the dough just reaches the top of the pans.

Place pans in a preheated 350F oven and bake for 40-50 minutes until the center of the loaves registers 185-190F (be sure to cook this loaf thoroughly, or it will fall in the middle after it is taken out of the oven). The dough will be golden brown on top and on the sides. When the bread is done, remove the it from the oven and from the pans and cool for at least 1 hour before slicing or serving.

Recipe from Peter Rienhart’s The Bread Baker’s Apprentice (and, yes, this is also one of my favorite bread cookbooks. It really was just a coincidence that I used all three for bread for the picnic. :) )


If you want the recipes for any of the other breads, please PM me and I will get them to you. Also, I’d be more than happy to share some of my sourdough starter with anyone who is prepared to leap into the wild, wild world of wild yeast baking. :)

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Here is my chili recipe:


(Adapted from Cook’s Country Magazine)

3 1/2 pounds Pork Shoulder, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 2-inch cubes

Salt and pepper

8 slices bacon, chopped fine

1 large onion, minced

3 large jalapeno chiles seeded and minced

2 tablespoons chili powder

1 tablespoon Ancho chile powder

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano

¼ tsp ground Cayenne pepper

8 medium garlic cloves, minced

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes

3 cups water

2 (16-ounce) cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1. Toss pork cubes with salt and pepper; set aside. Fry bacon in large, heavy soup kettle or Dutch oven over medium heat until fat renders and bacon crisps, about 10 minutes. Remove bacon with slotted spoon to plate lined with paper towels; pour all but 2 teaspoons fat from pot into small bowl; set aside.

2. Increase heat to medium-high, add half of meat to now-empty pot and cook until well browned on all sides, about 10 minutes. Transfer browned meat to bowl. Brown remaining meat, adding more bacon fat to pot if necessary. Transfer second batch of meat to bowl.

3. Reduce heat to medium-low and add 3 tablespoons bacon fat to now-empty pot. Add onion, jalapenos, chili powders, cumin, oregano and cayenne; cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are beginning to brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and brown sugar; cook until just fragrant, about 15 seconds. Add diced tomatoes and scrape pot bottom to loosen browned bits. Add reserved bacon, browned pork, and water; bring to simmer. Continue to cook, uncovered, at slow simmer until meat is tender and juices are dark and starting to thicken, about 2 hours.

4. Remove chunks of pork from pot into bowl and shred using two forks. Return to pot.

5. Add beans, reduce heat to low, and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes.

6. Refrigerate overnight, if possible. Before reheating you may want to skim some of the excess grease that will collect on top of the chili. Or not. It is up to you.

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Collards for a crowd

3-4 pounds of collard greens

1 ham bone with some meat left

1 smoked ham hock or smoked turkey parts

4 large onions

Pepper to taste

8 Garlic cloves pressed or cut up

2 Teaspoons of Oliver oil

3 tablespoons of butter

1) Heat a large pot (I use my soup pot) add the oil and the meat (ham hock and/or ham bone). Let the meat heat up and flavor the oil.

2) Slice and cut up the onions. Sweat in the pot over low heat until they are limp. Be careful not to burn.

3) Add the garlic and continue to sweat for a few more minutes.

4) Break up and chucks of ham off the bone and add some pepper (1 ½ tablespoons).

5) Prepare the collard greens by taking the stem off (at least the big pieces), rolling a bunch of leaves up like a cigar and slicing away. This will seem like a huge amount of greens, but they surprisingly cook down to a manageable amount. Reframe from adding any water of liquid as the greens will give up a lot of liquid.

6) Mix together in the pot and cook for about 30 minutes. You can either continue cooking these or stop and reheat in the future for another 10-15 minutes before you serve them. Remove the ham bone, shred any turkey of ham into the pot. Many people feel that the “pot liquor” is the best part of the dish.

7) Finish off with a couple of pats of butter mixed in before you serve. Sometimes I add some tomatoes as well. I tend to hold off on the salt as the ham can add a great deal of it.

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I got this recipe off the back of the bag of "Cassoulets USA" beluga lentils, which I picked up at La Cuisine in Alexandria.

Beluga Lentil Salad

(Yield: 4 1/2 cups)

3/4 cup Beluga Lentils

1 1/2 cups chicken broth or water

1/2 cup plain yogurt (I used non-fat)

1/2 lemon, juiced

Lemon zest for garnish

1 green onion, chopped

1 red delicious apple, chopped (I used a different variety - jonagold maybe)

3/4 cup golden raisins

3/4 cup toasted walnuts (I used pecans)

1 tsp. curry powder

Prepare Lentils: Rinse lentils and pick over. In a medium pan cook lentils in broth or water for 15-20 minutes or until just tender. Drain. (I cooked them the full 20 minutes and there wasn't really any liquid left to be drained)

Prepare salad: Toss lentils with yogurt and lemon juice. Add green onion, apple, raisins, and nuts; toss to combine. Sprinkle with curry powder and blend in. Garnish with lemon zest.

I made this the day before and added some more yogurt before the picnic to moisten the salad a bit.

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The Prosciutto and Artichoke Schiacciata recipe was snatched from Slashfood.com

And I confess. I made it with frozen bread dough. I think it would have been better made from scratch, I just have to get over my tendency to kill yeast.

I found the Café Atlantico guacamole recipe online a while back, but I don’t remember where. I left out the serrano:


4 avocados

2 oz. cilantro, fresh.chopped

1 oz. serrano, minced

4 oz. tomatoes, roma

4 oz. red onion, diced

to taste salt

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I bet a lot of you missed this because we arrived around 3:30 and y'all looked like, well, pigged out by then! I mean that in a nice way. Try it at home. I just added some jalapeno and cayenne peppers from the garden, maybe more than I should have.

Ground Beef, Sausage, and Cabbage Jambalaya

(Makes 6 main-dish or 20 side dish servings)

From The Prudhomme Family Cookbook, Darilee and Saul’s recipe

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 ½ pounds ground beef

1 pound andouille sausage (preferred) or any other good smoked sausage such as kielbasa, cut into ¾ inch slices

1 tablespoon salt

1 teaspoon ground red pepper (cayenne)

1 teaspoon black pepper

2 cups chopped green bell peppers

2 cups chopped onions

1 cup chopped celery

1 cup chopped green onions (tops only)

½ cup packed, chopped fresh parsley

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 10 oz cans Rotel or other liquidy tomatoes

7 cups coarsely chopped cabbage (1 large or 2 small)

4 ¾ cups beef or pork stock (if you don’t make your own, get the one with low sodium)

2 cups uncooked rice (preferably converted rice)

Place the oil in a heavy 6 quart saucepan or large Dutch oven. Add the beef and place over high heat, breaking up meat into small chunks. Add the sausage and cook until the ground beef is browned, about 5 minute, stirring occasionally and continuing to break up the meat chunks. Stir in the salt and the red and black peppers; cook about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the bell peppers, onions, celery, green onions, parsley, and garlic; cook about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the tomatoes and cook and stir about 2 minutes.

Now add the cabbage and do not stir. Cover pan and cook about 25 minutes, stirring only occasionally after mixture on the bottom of the pan has browned and then scraping the pan bottom well. Stir in about 1 ½ cups of the stock, scraping pan bottom until all browned sediment is dissolved. Cook uncovered about 15 minutes, stirring and scraping occasionally. Add 1 ½ cups more stock, stirring until all sediment is dissolved from pan bottom, then stir in the remaining 1 ¾ cups stock. Add the rice, stirring well.

Cover pan, reduce heat to very low, and cook about 25 minutes. Check after 20 minutes to make sure mixture is not scorching. Remove pan from heat and let sit covered until rice is tender, about 25 minutes. Stir well and serve immediately.

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3 T. olive oil

1 medium onion, coarsely chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 pound mushrooms, chopped

2 cups cauliflower pieces

1 large potato, peeled (or scrubbed) and chopped

1 large [red or] green pepper

2 large carrots, peeled (or scrubbed) and chopped

3 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels

1 (28 oz.) can plum tomatoes, including juice

2 (15 oz.) cans pinto, garbanzo or kidney beans including liquid

1 cup tomato juice

1 T ground cumin

2 T chili powder

1 t. paprika

1 1/2 t. salt

1/8 t. cayenne pepper

2 T. tomato paste

3 T. dry red wine

1. Heat olive oil in large stew pot over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and sauté for 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and sauté another 10 minutes. Stir in cauliflower, potato, green [or red] pepper, carrots, corn, tomatoes, beans, tomato juice, cumin, chili powder, paprika, salt, cayenne, tomato paste and wine.

2. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to simmer. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes. (I usually simmer for at least 90 minutes).

Makes 6 servings.

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Ray’s Famous Cole Slaw

1 Med Onion 70 gm

2 Tsb Sugar 25 gm

¼ tsp Salt

½ tsp Red pepper flakes

1/8 tsp Celery seed

5 Tsb Cider vinegar 75 gm

¾ Cup Mayonnaise 180 gm

½ Cup Sour cream 120 gm

1/3 Red bell pepper 100 gm

1 Carrot 100 gm

1 Tsb Minced fresh parsley

1 Green Cabbage 1 kg


Grate the onion. Add sugar, salt, red pepper flakes, celery seed, vinegar, mayonnaise and sour cream. Wisk until smooth.


Core the red pepper, removing seeds and ribs. Shred pepper finely crosswise with a sharp butcher knife. Wrap shreds in a paper towel and wring out moisture.

Peel carrot and cut into long shreds using a box grater. Wrap shreds in a paper towel and wring out moisture.

Cut cabbage in half top to bottom. Cut each half into thirds top to bottom to yield six wedges. Remove the core from each wedge, and shred each wedge crosswise as finely as possible.


Mix vegetables, toss with dressing and serve.

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Finally getting around to posting my recipe for Red Potato Salad, which I adapted ever so slightly.


5 cups peeled and diced red potatoes

1/4 cup vanilla yogurt

3/4 cup sour cream

1/4 cup chopped green onions, mostly whites but some green

1 lemon, juiced

1/2 cup chopped celery

1/2 cup shredded carrots

1/8 cup minced red onion

salt and pepper to taste

garlic salt to taste


Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook for 15 minutes or until tender but firm. Drain the potatoes and transfer to a large bowl.

In a large mixing bowl, toss together the sour cream, yogurt, green onions, lemon, celery, carrots, red onion, salt, pepper and garlic salt. Pour the mixture over the potatoes. Mix gently, thoroughly coating but not mashing the potatoes. Refrigerate until serving.

Makes 10-12 servings.

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Ray’s Famous Cole Slaw

1 Med Onion 70 gm

2 Tsb Sugar 25 gm

¼ tsp Salt

½ tsp Red pepper flakes

1/8 tsp Celery seed

5 Tsb Cider vinegar 75 gm

¾ Cup Mayonnaise 180 gm

½ Cup Sour cream 120 gm

1/3 Red bell pepper 100 gm

1 Carrot 100 gm

1 Tsb Minced fresh parsley

1 Green Cabbage 1 kg


Grate the onion. Add sugar, salt, red pepper flakes, celery seed, vinegar, mayonnaise and sour cream. Wisk until smooth.


Core the red pepper, removing seeds and ribs. Shred pepper finely crosswise with a sharp butcher knife. Wrap shreds in a paper towel and wring out moisture.

Peel carrot and cut into long shreds using a box grater. Wrap shreds in a paper towel and wring out moisture.

Cut cabbage in half top to bottom. Cut each half into thirds top to bottom to yield six wedges. Remove the core from each wedge, and shred each wedge crosswise as finely as possible.


Mix vegetables, toss with dressing and serve.

Welcome to the board and thank you for a wonderful contribution!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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