recipe

KNR, p. 286 “Puttanesca Sauce” (Staten Island Gravy)

Our good friend and enthusiastic cook, Chin Bawambi, sent us a recipe for Puttanesca Sauce. Sheila and I followed the recipe and it’s a WOW! We took the photos before and after taste-testing and tried it with pasta as well as beef and chicken dishes. We can honestly say it’s a truly versatile sauce. Guarantee: no bodies were found anywhere on the premises while cooking. Sheila tells me that I did fall asleep on the couch with a satisfied smile after dinner, though. I believe her.

Puttanesca Sauce (Staten Island Gravy)

Chin Bawambi
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs 15 mins
Total Time 2 hrs 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian

Equipment

  • Crock-pot

Ingredients
  

  • 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes with basil
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon powdered or minced garlic
  • 1 14 oz can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic, oregano
  • 1 heaping Tablespoon capers
  • 1/4 cup sliced Kalamata olives
  • 1 2 oz can anchovy fillets in olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Montreal steak seasoning (or to taste)

Instructions
 

  • Turn crock-pot on high.
  • Place crushed tomatoes, sea salt, oregano, and garlic in crock-pot.
  • Drain diced tomatoes and add to crock-pot.
  • Drain and mince capers, add to crock-pot, and blend.
  • Finely chop olive slices, add to crock-pot, and blend.
  • Pour olive oil from the anchovy can, plus the two Tablespoons of olive oil, into the crock-pot, keeping the anchovies in reserve.
  • Finely chop anchovies and add to crock-pot, blending in.
  • Add Montreal steak seasoning.
  • Stir all ingredients thoroughly.
  • Cook on high for 30 minutes, stir and drop temperature to low.
  • Cook an additional 45 minutes, stir again and check for flavor. If needed, add more steak seasoning to taste.
  • Cook for an additional hour.
  • Serve while hot or let cool for a bit and refrigerate up to a week in glass jars.
  • Serve with pasta, poultry, veggies, or meats.

Notes

Yields 48 ounces. We pour the sauce into Ball/Mason jars and refrigerate up to a week if not serving it right away.
Keyword Sauce

KNR, p. 282 “Pumpkin Pecan Cheesecake Bars”

By now, you know that we love pumpkin in soup, smoothies, cookies, or other desserts. The flavor works well with several different spices and even complements chocolate.

This year, Sheila has been experimenting with ways to make a foolproof pumpkin bar. She tried a few recipes developed by some pretty famous people and found them to be too sweet or too complicated. She finally threw up her hands and created her own.

As always, I was the taste-tester. I might have gained a pound or two while I chomped away on the samples.

 

Pumpkin Pecan Cheesecake Bars

Sheila Kerrian
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 5 Tablespoons cold butter
  • 1 cup pecans, chopped fine
  • 8 ounces softened cream cheese
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 2 extra large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1.5 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Combine flour and brown sugar.
  • Cut in butter until crumbly.
  • Stir in finely chopped pecans, then set aside 1 cup for topping.
  • Lightly butter sides and bottom of 8-inch square baking pan.
  • Press remaining crumb mixture into the bottom of the pan.
  • Bake at 350 for 15 minutes, until edges are lightly browned. Remove from oven and let cool.
  • While the crust is baking, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth.
  • Beat in the pumpkin, eggs, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg, and pour the mixture evenly over the crust.
  • Sprinkle with set-aside crumb mixture.
  • Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown and puffs up in the center.
  • Cool on wire rack and cut into 9 bars.

Notes

May all your holiday snacks be delightfully delicious!

 

KNR, p. 275 “Chicken Pot Pie”

Chicken Pot Pie is one of my all-time favorite comfort foods. If a restaurant has it on the menu, no matter what time of year, I order it, with one qualification – I’m fairly picky about the type of crust. It has to be a solid pie crust, no puff pastry desired. I also enjoy a double crust, but I have been known to eat the pot pie that only comes with a top crust at a local pub. That’s because the filling is soooooo good and that top crust is perfect. The cook makes two dozen on Wednesdays, and I get there early if my taste buds hanker his masterpiece. Which is often.


As a recent birthday present, Sheila came up with this version to surprise me. It tastes suspiciously like the original, so she must have persuaded him to give up the recipe. But, I didn’t hear any reports of bodies at the pub, so it’s all good.

Use “Pie Crusts for Double Crust Meat Pies” recipe here.

 

Chicken Pot Pie

Sheila Kerrian
Prep Time 40 mins
Cook Time 35 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 4 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/4 cups diced onion
  • 2/3 cup diced carrots
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • Dash pepper
  • 6 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups chicken broth, reduced sodium
  • 3/4 cup half & half
  • 1 cup diced small red potatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • 3 cups cooked (shredded or half-inch chopped) chicken
  • 3/4 cup early young peas, drained

Instructions
 

  • Assemble all ingredients, including pie crusts.
  • Melt butter in 12” skillet.
  • Add onion, carrots, celery, and salt to the skillet. Cover and cook 6 minutes on medium until veggies are soft, not browned.
  • Remove from heat and add flour a Tablespoon at a time, and mix until veggies are thoroughly coated.
  • Return to heat and stir in chicken broth, then half & half, and bring to boil on medium high heat – about 3-4minutes, stirring constantly.
  • Mix in diced potatoes, pepper, and thyme, cover and turn down heat to medium low.
  • Simmer until potatoes are tender,about 8-10 minutes, stirring often. Remove from heat.
  • Add chicken and mix thoroughly, then add drained peas and stir again.
  • Preheat oven to 450.
  • Place one crust in deep 9” pie pan.
  • Place all the chicken mixture into the pie pan, then cover with the second crust.
  • Crimp the edges of the top and bottom crusts together to seal in the mixture.
  • Brush the top with an egg yolk wash.
  • Prick the top crust with a fork several times to allow steam to release.
  • Place pie on sided aluminum cookie tray and set on rack in bottom third of the oven.
  • Bake at 450 for 18 minutes, then rotate cookie tray. Lower heat to 375.
  • Bake at 375 for an additional 15 minutes, until crust is golden brown.
  • Note: if crust edges are browning too quickly, cover the edges with pie shields, or strips of aluminum foil.
  • Remove from oven and let stand for 10 minutes, for easier slicing. Serve while still warm.

Notes

 
Enjoy!

 

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