Friday, July 31, 2009

My Niece and Nephew Operate the Woodridge Location

Frank's Italian Sausage Sandwiches


2 – 2 ½ lbs. bulk mild Italian sausage
1 large sweet onion (sliced)
3 bell peppers (one green, one red and one yellow) – (cut into strips)
1 lb. shredded Mozzarella cheese
3 large cans Pastorelli Pizza Sauce
Fresh garlic
Olive oil
Jewel bakery hotdog rolls


In a large frying pan, add some olive oil to sauté the sliced onions and pepper strips until tender, I like to add a few cloves of crushed garlic once the veggies are halfway tender so the garlic doesn’t burn. Once the veggies are tender, remove from the frying pan into a bowl.

In the same frying pan, brown the bulk Italian sausage until fully cooked. Drain the fat, then cook just a bit longer. Add the veggies and two cans of Pastorelli Pizza Sauce, then simmer. With one can of pizza sauce remaining, add additional sauce as needed so the mixture isn’t too dry.

Slice open the Jewel bakery hotdog rolls, but do not cut all of the way through. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Add mixture to the hotdog rolls, then top with a layer of shredded Mozzarella cheese and place sandwiches on a flat baking sheet. Place baking sheet into pre-heated oven until the cheese melts. Serve warm sandwiches with your favorite side dish, I recommend an antipasto salad or fresh mozzarella and tomatoes with oil and vinegar.

Baby Back Ribs


Baby Back Ribs
Grey Poupon Mustard
Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ Sauce
Liquid Smoke
Reynolds Baking Bags (Turkey Sized)


Remove the membrane from the underside of the baby back ribs. Easy to remove by starting at narrow end by placing a pointed utensil under the membrane over a bone, then grasping it with a paper towel to strip it the remainder of the way.

Once the membrane is removed from all of the slaps, squirt a liberal amount of Grey Poupon mustard on both sides of the slabs and spread evenly with a brush or your hand. Then squirt a liberal amount of Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce on both sides of the slabs and spread evenly with a brush or your hand. Shake a liberal amount of liquid smoke onto the slabs, about three shacks per slab should be adequate.

Place up to three full slabs into a turkey-sized Reynold’s Baking Bag lying flat (DO NO STACK), then seal the bag with the enclosed plastic ties. Place the bag onto a flat baking sheet, then poke five or six holes on the top of the bag. Place the ribs into a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 2 ½ hours.

When the timer sounds, remove the ribs from the bag, re-coat the ribs with more Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce, then cover and let rest for 15-20 minutes.

Place the slabs onto a pre-heated BBQ grill with the meaty side up to warm the meat for a while. Then flip the slabs over to brown the meaty side, be careful not to burn the meat.

Serve with your favorite side dishes.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

"Shut Up & Mangia!"

I discovered this website - check it out! There's something for everyone, including their newsletter, "Shut Up & Mangia!"

Zucchini Bread; low fat and luscious

I alter almost ALL quick breads and make them 100% moister and cut the fat content wayyyyy down by eliminating the OIL in the recipe and substituting it with ANY flavor (depending on the recipe you're making) with BABY FOOD!!! Applesauce works good too, but baby food has a silkier texture and a lot more flavor!

Zucchini Bread

Mix together & set aside:
2 cups white flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1-1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground cloves

In another bowl, add all ingredients below & mix well:
3 eggs
1/2 C. applesauce OR baby food (squash, bananas, applesauce, pears... whatever!)
1 C. white sugar
1/2 C. light sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla
2 C. peeled & shredded zucchini
(Add a cup of chopped walnuts, if desired)

Add the dry ingredients & stir gently until mixed well.

Pour batter in a greased & floured loaf pan and bake in a 325 degree oven for approx. 50-60 minutes - test center with toothpick & when it comes out clean, it's done. It may take a little longer- or not... it depends on your oven, so test the center and make sure it's not 'wet'. Cool in pan for 15 minutes, then remove.

My favorite dough recipe for Pizza Crust and Italian Bread

My favorite dough recipe for Pizza Crust and Italian Bread

6 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
3 cups of tepid water
1 pkg Quick Rise Yeast
2 Tbspns Vegetable Oil

Mix 4 cups of flour with salt... two minutes
Dissolve yeast in 2 cups of tepid water - around 95 - 105 degrees
(if water is too hot or too cold yeast will not dissolve)

Add yeast mixture to salted flour, Knead. if using mixer use hook and mix on slow speed till consistent.
Once dough is mixed slowly add the rest of the water and flour until you have a consistent soft dough.
(if too soft add a little flour till you have what you like if too hard, add water)

Place soft dough in a large bowl with room for dough to double.
Keep loosely covered in a warm place for one hour.
Remove dough from bowl onto a well floured work surface.
Knead dough till smooth.

Cover loosely and let it proof for 1/2 hour.
Shape into bread or roll into pizza.
Bake bread @ 475 F for 20 minutes.
Pizza @ 475 F for 15 minutes

For A Crispy Pizza Crust, do not proof dough, separate into amount you will use. and place immediately in fridge. When ready to roll out dough, just remove from refrigerator and roll it out and construct your pizza.
half the recipe makes a nice thick 16 inch pizza. for thin pizza divide by four.
For bread, half the recipe makes about a one pound loaf of Crispy Italian Bread.
divide accordingly

To use refrigerated dough for bread. Remove from fridge let dough warm about a half hour then knead and let proof for another half hour. Shape into bread and bake @ 475 F for 20 minutes.