Storm the Cassoulet

Spinach-Pea Risotto


2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup Arborio rice

½ cup thinly sliced carrots

2 14 ounce can vegetable broth or reduced-sodium chicken broth (3-1/2 cups)

2 cups fresh spinach leaves, coarsely chopped

1 cup frozen baby or regular peas

2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, shredded

1/3 cup thinly sliced green onions

Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Optional:  sliced radish


In 3-quart saucepan cook garlic in hot oil over medium heat for 30 seconds. Add the rice. Cook about 5 minutes or until rice is golden brown, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Stir in carrots.

Meanwhile, in a 1-1/2-quart saucepan bring broth to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer.

Carefully stir 1 cup of hot broth into rice mixture. Cook, stirring frequently, over medium heat until liquid is absorbed. Then add 1/2 cup broth at a time, stirring frequently until broth is abosorbed before adding more broth (about 22 minutes).

Stir in any remaining broth. Cook and stir just until rice is just tender and creamy.

Stir in spinach, peas, shredded cheese, and green onions; heat through. Top with cheese shards. Serve immediately. Makes 6 servings.

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Basic Roast Pork


1 (5 pound) boneless pork loin

½ stick of butter

1 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoons pepper

1 teaspoon of garlic power



canned pork gravy

canned apple pie filling


 Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).

Rub the butter thoroughly all over pork. Season the port well with the salt, pepper, garlic powder, and a generous amount of Worcestershire.   Cover the port well with the parsley – it will make a “crust”.  Place pork in an uncovered roasting pan on the middle oven rack.

Bake in the preheated oven approximately 2 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches at least 145 degrees F (63 degrees C), depending upon your desired doneness. Add more Worcestershire to pork while cooking.

Serve with the canned pie filling spread around it, and serve the gravy on the side.

Note: it took 2 hours to cook a 9 pound pork loin at 350 CONVECTION.

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How to Boil an Egg


START WITH ROOM TEMPERATURE EGGS-leave up up to 1 hour….no longer.  Place eggs in a single layer on the bottom of a pan.  Don’t stack them or they’ll clank and break in the cooking process.  Cover with tap water an inch ot two above the eggs.  Bring to a full rolling boil.

The minute the water comes to a boil, turn off the heat and slap a lid on the pan.  Set the timer for 15 minutes for large eggs.  For small to medium eggs, set the timer for 12 minutes.  For extra-large or jumbo eggs, set to 18 minutes.

Then the time is up, pour cold water over the eggs and let them sit until they’re cool.  Place back in the carton and refrigerate.

Hint:  For easier peeling, add a tablespoon of oil to the water.  Or is your eggs are super fresh, add a half-teaspoon of baking soda per quart of water.

To prevent cracks:  start with cold water, and add a teaspoon of salt.

A splash of vinegar will help prevent eggs from spilling out if they do crack.

Alternate Jacques Pepin Method:

Use a sharp object like a thumbtack to puncture a hole in the round end of the egg, where the air chamber is. It releases pressure inside of the egg, so the shell won’t crack.

Let eggs cook in a very gentle boil for 10 minutes. They should not boil at too high a temperature, otherwise the the egg white will be tough, and the inside green and rubbery.

After the eggs have simmered, pour out the hot liquid, and shake the pan to crackle the shells.

Next submerge it in an ice water bath. Leave the eggs in the cold bath for 15 minutes, enough time to allow the eggs to cool and the stinky sulfur inside the eggs to dissipate into the ice water.

Peel the egg under a stream of water. This makes it easier to peel away the egg’s thin outer membrane. Enjoy tender, perfectly cooked egg!

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How can I keep a pie crust from shrinking when I pre-bake it?

A pie crust that shrinks a great deal is also one that is tough. This is a result of too much water or overhandling of the pastry.

Lining the crust with parchment and pie weights, dried beans or peas until it has set also helps to keep its shape. A coffee filter can be used to line the pastry.

Pie crusts can also shrink away from the sides of a pie plate, giving a crust a very uneven appearance and creating openings.

This is primarily the result of not resting the pie dough enough.  To prevent this type of shrinkage, rest the pie dough for about 5 minutes after you roll it out onto your work surface and before you press it into your pie plate. Once it is in the pie plate, put it back in the fridge to rest for about 15 minutes before baking. This resting gives the gluten time to relax and will help keep your crust from shrinking during baking.

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Bacon Veggie Quiche


1 Pie Crust PRE COOKED in deep dish

1/2 cup Crimini mushrooms

1/2 cup onion

1/2 broccoli florets or asparagus or califlower

1/2 cup red repper

1 ½ cups of shredded Cheddar cheese

½ cup of chopped tomato

5 strips bacon or 3 chicken sausages

5 eggs

3/4 cup milk

6 chopped fresh basil leaves

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper


Preheat Oven to 350 degrees.

Slice and saute mushrooms, broccoli, onion, tomato and red pepper on medium heat until most of the water is removed (about 25 minutes).

Meanwhile, cook bacon or sausage and set aside to cool. When cool, crumble. Combine bacon with vegetable mixture and keep warm.
In large bowl, combine eggs and milk until uniform; add in basil, salt and pepper. Whisk until uniform.

Place shredded cheddar cheese in pie crust; press firmly but gently.

Place vegetable mixture on top of cheese and fill crust 3/4 full with egg mixture. DO NOT OVERFILL!

Place pie crust on a baking sheet (to catch any spillage while baking) and bake for 35-40 minutes or until firm when gently jiggled and golden on top.  Let the quiche set before serving.

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