Storm the Cassoulet





​To prevent the crust from bubbling in the oven, pierce it several times with the tips of a dinner fork. These holes will allow air to escape rather than forming bubbles.


​This is not mandatory but it’s a good tip. The wetter the sauce, the more you should heed this advice. Place sauce on top of the cheese by using a spoon to dollop — or a squeeze bottle to zigzag or spiral.


Very thin crusts such as Top This! should be topped lightly. Use about one cup (5-6 oz.) of cheese per 13″ pizza. Add any other toppings sparingly … a little goes a long way.


In your oven:
Preheat to 450°. Bake directly on the middle oven rack or on a pizza stone (the pizza stone must be 450 degrees or hotter for at least 45 minutes). Cook 8 to 10 minutes. Do not use a pizza pan (even a perforated one), sheet pan or anything else to cook these pizzas.

On your outdoor gas grill:
​Preheat to 450° then turn one half of the grill very low and leave the other side on high heat. Cook pizza on low half of the grill, lid closed, checking often to be sure pizza is getting charred but not burnt. You may need to rotate the pizza to cook it evenly. ​​


When you think the pizza is done, use kitchen tongs to lift it up about 6-8 inches on one side while still baking or grilling: IF IT BENDS, IT’S NOT DONE.​ Keep cooking until it does not bend.


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Pulled Pork in the Slow Cooker

Makes 16 servings (about 4 pounds of cooked meat)

What You Need

2 tablespoons kosher salt, preferably smoked
2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
2 teaspoons dry mustard
2 teaspoons garlic powder (no salt)
2 teaspoons onion powder (no salt)
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon celery seed

2 tablespoons dry ginger
1 pork shoulder or pork butt (7 to 8 pounds with bone, 6 to 7 pounds if boneless)
2 medium onions, quartered


Make the rub: Place the salt, brown sugar, paprika, black pepper, chili powder, smoked paprika, dry mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, cornstarch, cayenne, ginger and celery seed in a small bowl and mix to combine.

Prep the slow cooker: Place the onions in a 6-quart or larger slow cooker.

Add the meat: Trim any excess fat.  Transfer the meat to the slow cooker, fat side up. Cover and cook on LOW until the meat is soft enough to pull apart with a spoon, 14 to 16 hours.

Shred the meat: Transfer the meat to a large bowl and let stand until cool enough to handle. Pull the meat apart into large chunks or shred with a fork, discarding any bone, connective tissue, and large clumps of fat.

Strain the liquid: Pour the cooking liquid through a fine-mesh strainer set over a medium bowl and discard the solids. If you are serving immediately, spoon off as much fat as possible from the surface. For best results, refrigerate until the fat solidifies and collects on top, then scrape off and discard the fat (keep the meat covered and refrigerated during this time).

Moisten the meat: Toss the meat with enough defatted cooking liquid to moisten. Serve the meat warm, or let cool, cover, and refrigerate to use in other recipes.

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Beef and Vegetable Lasagna


from The New Basics Cookbook


2 tbsp. olive oil

1 lb. ground beef

5 cups tomato sauce

4 tbsp. chopped fresh Italian (flat leaf) parsley

3 1/2 c. Ricotta cheese

1 c. chopped cooked spinach, well drained; optional

1/4 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1 tbsp. dried oregano

3/4 tsp. ground nutmeg

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

8 lasagna noodles, cooked until not quite tender

3 c. grated Mozzarella cheese

Optional: add sautéed sausage, sliced zucchini, tomatoes, crushed red pepper, mushrooms


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the beef, crumbling it into the skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until it is browned. Drain, and set aside.

Place the tomato sauce in a saucepan. Add the beef and 2 tablespoons of the parsley, and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat.

In a mixing bowl, combine the Ricotta, spinach, Parmesan, remaining 2 tablespoons parsley, oregano, nutmeg, and pepper; stir well.

Place 2 cups of the tomato sauce in the bottom of a 13 x 9 inch baking dish. Arrange 4 lasagna noodles on top of the sauce. Spread half the Ricotta mixture over the lasagna, and sprinkle with 1 cup of the Mozzarella. Repeat the layers of sauce, noodles, Ricotta, and Mozzarella.

Top with the remaining 2 cups of sauce and 1 cup Mozzarella, sprinkle evenly over the top.

Cover the dish loosely with aluminum foil, place it on a baking sheet, and bake for 45 minutes.

Then remove the foil and bake an additional 20 minutes. Remove the dish from the oven and allow it to rest 10-15 minutes before serving. 8 portions.

NOTE: For individual frozen portions, cut the baked lasagna into eight pieces. Place in freezer container with lids. Freeze when cool. To reheat, defrost and bake, covered with aluminum foil, at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.




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Pepperoni and Cheese Crescents



11(8-oz.) can Refrigerated Crescent Dinner Rolls

24 slices (about 5 oz.) pepperoni (or other meat)

2oz. (1/2 cup) shredded mozzarella cheese

1cup tomato pasta or pizza sauce, heated


Heat oven to 375°F. Separate dough into 8 triangles; pat out each triangle slightly.

Place 3 slices pepperoni, slightly overlapping, on center of each triangle. Top each with about 1 tablespoon cheese.

Roll up, starting at shortest side of triangle and rolling to opposite point. Place rolls, point side down, on ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake at 375°F. for 10 to 14 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from cookie sheet. Serve warm crescents with warm pasta sauce for dipping.

Shape these crescents up to 2 hours ahead. Cover and refrigerate them. Bake them just before they’ll be served.

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Tailgate Sandwiches


1 (12 count) package Hawaiian bread rolls

1 pound shaved Black Forest ham

12 slices Gruyere or Swiss cheese

1 (8 ounce) tub PHILADELPHIA Chive & Onion Cream Cheese Spread

1/2 cup butter, melted

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1/2 tablespoon dried minced onion

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


Cut all rolls in half. Place roll bottoms in 9×13-inch pan.

Place equal amounts of ham on each roll bottom. Top with Gruyere.

On each of the roll tops, spread a generous amount of the cream cheese spread. Return the tops to the bottoms making sandwiches.

In a separate bowl, mix together the butter, Worcestershire sauce, onion and Parmesan cheese.

Pour over your sandwiches and let sit for at least 20 minutes. (You can make these ahead of time and allow to sit in fridge overnight.)

Place sandwiches, covered in foil, in a preheated 350 degrees F oven. Bake for 20 minutes or until warmed through. Enjoy!

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Pigs in a Blanket



2 tubes crescent roll dough

cocktail franks

Optional:  wrap with cheese under crescent roll.


Pop open the tubes of dough and unroll the sheets. Each sheet of dough will be perforated into eight triangle shapes. Separate the triangles on each roll.

Cut each triangle into three smaller triangles using a knife or pizza roller. Cut from the middle point to the base of the triangle twice to make three triangles.

Place one cocktail frank on top of the dough, on one of the wide ends. Roll the dough around the frank until the entire dough triangle is rolled around the frank.

Place the dough-wrapped frank on a baking sheet. Continue wrapping each frank in a piece of dough and placing them on the baking sheet, allowing about an inch between the pieces to allow room for the dough to rise.

Place the baking pan in a 350-degree oven and cook for 10 minutes or until the dough is golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly.

Serve with mustard sauce.

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Pizza Casserole



1 (16 ounce) package uncooked rotini pasta
1 lb ground Italian sausage
1 (24 ounce) jar pasta sauce
1 (16 ounce) container cottage cheese
1 (2 1/4 ounce) can sliced black olives, drained (optional)
1 (4 ounce) can mushrooms, drained
12 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese
2 (3 ounce) packages sliced pepperoni


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9X13 casserole dish.

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Place pasta in the pot, cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until al dente, and drain.

In a skillet over medium heat, cook the sausage until evenly brown, drain grease. Mix in the cooked pasta and pasta sauce. Pour into prepared casserole dish.

In a bowl, mix the cottage cheese, olives, mushrooms and mozzarella cheese.

Spoon the cheese mixture over the sausage and pasta mixture. Top with pepperoni slices.

Bake 25 minutes in the preheated oven, until bubbly and lightly browned.



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Calico Beans



1 pound of bacon, diced

1 pound lean ground beef (90% lean)

1 cup chopped onion

1 can (21 ounces) pork and beans

1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 can (16 ounces) butter beans or lima beans, rinsed and drained

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup ketchup

½ cup of white vinegar

1 teaspoon prepared mustard

1 teaspoon salt


In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove

to paper towels to drain. Discard drippings.

In the same skillet, cook beef and onion over medium heat until the

meat is no longer pink; drain. Combine the beef mixture, bacon,

beans, brown sugar, ketchup, vinegar, mustard and salt. Spoon into a

greased 2-qt. baking dish.

Bake, uncovered, at 325° for 45-60 minutes or until the beans are

as thick as desired. Recipe can be easily doubled for a larger

group. Yield: 8-10 servings





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Mom’s Corn Bread



1 box of Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix

1 egg

¼  cup milk

1 SMALL can of creamed corn

Optional:  jalapenos, Montgomery jack cheese


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Mix together the Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix with the eggs, milk, creamed corn.

Pour the batter into an 8×8 pan, and bake for 20 minutes.

Check for doneness, the edges of the crust should be starting to brown.

Let cool for a few minutes, run a spatula up under the pan to loosen the corn bread. Flip onto a plate.

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St. James’ Baked Beans

baked beans

from Dear Abby


6 slices bacon, diced

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 16-ounce can pork and beans, drained

1 16-ounce can lima beans, drained

1 15-ounce can kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 10-ounce package sharp cheddar cheese, cubed

1 cup ketchup

3/4 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce


Heat oven to 325 degrees. Butter a 1 1/2-quart casserole. In a small skillet, saute the bacon and onions until the bacon is crisp and onions are lightly browned; drain well. In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients. Add bacon-onion mixture; mix well. Pour bean mixture into prepared casserole. Bake uncovered for 1 1/2 hours.

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