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TODAY recipes
updated 12/29/2009 4:04:33 PM ET 2009-12-29T21:04:33

Recipe: Al's chili

  • 2 lbs. Chuck steak cubed in bite-size pieces
  • 1 lb. Hot Italian sausage removed from casings
  • 2 Large onions, diced
  • 12 Cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 tbsp. Cumin
  • 1 tbsp. Paprika
  • 1 tbsp. Pure chili powder
  • 1 32-oz. Can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 16-oz. Can pinto beans
  • 1 16-oz. Can Northern beans
  • 1 16-oz. Can dark red kidney beans
  • For garnish: chopped scallions, sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese

Brown the beef and sausages in a large dutch oven. Remove the meat and reserve. Drain off the fat, reserving about two tablespoons. Saute the onions and garlic till translucent, about seven to eight minutes.

Add the cumin, paprika and chili powder. Then add the tomatoes and the beef into the dutch oven. Stir the whole pot, and simmer on the stove for about an hour and a half. At that point, add the three cans of beans, simmer for another 30 minutes.

Serve with dishes of chopped scallions, sour cream and shredded cheddar cheese. A nice, warm corn bread would be good as well.

Recipe: Ann's pasta puttanesca

  • 1-2 Bunches fresh basil, unwashed leaves, sliced once
  • 3 Cups olive oil
  • 2 Cups tomatoes — cherry are best, but Roma work, too. The key is to pick a flavorful type, not a hothouse tomato.
  • 1 Tube anchovy paste
  • 1 Bulb garlic, freshly chopped
  • 1 Box shell pasta
  • 1-1/2 Cups black Greek olives — pitted (do not by any means use canned.) I usually hand-pit Mediterranean black olives
  • Freshly grated parmesan cheese

-Mix garlic, olive oil, black olives. I like to smoosh the olives with my fingers to bring out the flavor.

-Add tomatoes, anchovy paste and basil leaves.

The best way to cook is to do all of this in the morning, cover and let it sit in the warm sun on a summer day for five hours. When it’s time for dinner, pour over cooked pasta, add parmesan cheese and serve.

If you don’t have a warm window, you can put it in a warm oven, making sure it is warm and not hot. But it will not be quite as good.

There is no way to hurry this dish, and no replicating what an afternoon in the sun can do to bring out the flavors.

Shell pasta is best because it catches the sauce, which is so good you want a lot of it. But other pasta types can work too.

This is a rich, flavorful dish, not for the weak at heart. If you are a garlic lover, you will love this dish.


Serve with a round or oval French bread or boule to sop up the sauce.

Recipe: Matt's favorite chicken marbella recipe

  • 4 chickens, 2 1/2 lbs. each, quartered
  • 1 head of garlic, peeled and finely pureed
  • 1/4 cup dried oregano
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup pitted prunes
  • 1/2 cup pitted Spanish green olives
  • 1/2 cup capers with a bit of juice
  • 6 bay leaves
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1/4 cup Italian parsley or fresh coriander (cilantro), finely chopped

1. In a large bowl combine chicken quarters, garlic, oregano, pepper and coarse salt to taste, vinegar, olive oil, prunes, olives, capers and juice, and bay leaves. Cover and let marinate, refrigerated, overnight.

2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

3. Arrange chicken in a single layer in one or two large, shallow baking pans and spoon marinade over it evenly. Sprinkle chicken pieces with brown sugar and pour white wine around them.

4. Bake for 50 minutes to one hour, basting frequently with pan juices. Chicken is done when thigh pieces, pricked with a fork at their thickest, yield clear yellow (rather than pink) juice.

5. With a slotted spoon transfer chicken, prunes, olives and capers to a serving platter. Moisten with a few spoonfuls of pan juices and sprinkle generously with parsley or cilantro. Pass remaining juices in a sauceboat.

6. To serve Chicken marbella cold, cool to room temperature in cooking juices before transferring to a serving platter. If chicken has been covered and refrigerated, allow it to return to room temperature before serving. Spoon some of the reserved juice over chicken.

Serving Size

16 pieces, 10 or more portions.

Recipe: Meredith's Apple Pie

  • Apples - any combination, but Granny Smith and Macs are preferred
  • Egg whites
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. apple pie spice (or allspice, cinnamon, mace)
  • Butter
  • Egg yolks
  • Prepared pie crust

Prepare pie crust, put in pie plate.

Brush crust with beaten egg white and set aside.

Peel and cut up apples in chunks and fill up crust. Put sugar and apple pie spice on top of apples.

Put one pat of butter, cut into 4 pieces, on top of apples. Put crust on top.

Mix egg yolks with a little bit of milk and brush on top.

Cut slits in crust.

Bake 10 minutes at 400 degrees and 30 minutes at 350.


Recipe: Tasty Morsels

  • 1 cup chopped dates
  • 1 small box of Ritz crackers
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup buttercream icing

Place chopped nuts, dates and condensed milk into double boiler.

Stir often until mixture thickens.

When thickened put aside for about 3 minutes.

When cooled, spread mixture over crackers and place on greased cookie sheet.

Place cookies in 350-degree oven for only 3 minutes. Remove and cool on cookie rack.

When cooled, cover with buttercream icing.

To firm icing quickly put frosted cookies in the refrigerator for 10 minutes. Then place cookies in a tin and place in the freezer.

Recipe: Peanut Butter Kiss Cookies

  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • Hershey Kisses
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsps. milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

Combine ingredients.

Roll into balls, roll balls in sugar. Bake on cookie sheet at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes. Top with chocolate.

Kiss immediately upon removal from oven.


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