Garlic Soup


  • 4 garlic cloves, minced, plus 1 garlic clove, cut in half
  •  Salt to taste (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ¼ teaspoon dried thyme, or a few sprigs fresh thyme
  • ½ cup pasta, such as elbow macaroni, orecchiette or fusilli
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 4 slices country-style bread, cut in half, or 8 slices baguette, lightly toasted
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  •  Ground pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan or Gruyère cheese


  1. Bring 6 1/2 cups water to a boil in a 3- or 4-quart saucepan. Add minced garlic, salt, bay leaf and thyme. Cover and simmer 15 minutes. Taste and adjust salt. Remove bay leaf, and fresh thyme sprigs, if using. (Dried thyme will be difficult to remove.)
  2. Add pasta to pot. Stir, cover and simmer until al dente, about 5 to 10 minutes, depending on pasta type. Stir from time to time so that pasta doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot. Add peas and simmer 5 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, rub toasted bread slices with cut garlic clove and place 2 pieces in each bowl.
  4. Beat together eggs and olive oil. Temper the egg: Spoon 2 ladlefuls of the hot soup into eggs and stir together.
  5. Turn off heat under soup and slowly stir in tempered egg mixture. Add pepper and parsley. Ladle soup into bowls over bread, sprinkle cheese over the top and serve.

Garlic Egg Chicken

1 egg yolk
6 cloves garlic, chopped
4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts halved
6 TBS butter
1 c dry bread crumbs
1 c grated Parmesan cheese
1 TBS parsley
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/2 TBS salt
1 TBS ground black pepper

1. To marinate: Beat egg yolk together with garlic in a nonporous glass dish or bowl. Add chicken, turn to coat, cover dish, and refrigerate to marinate for at least 4 hours, or overnight if possible.
2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
3. Melt butter and pour into the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. Mix together the bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, parsley, garlic, salt and pepper and dip marinated chicken in crumb mixture. Place coated chicken in baking dish and pour remaining egg marinade over all.
4. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes on each side, or until chicken is cooked through and juices run clear.

Parmesan-Sage Roast Turkey with Sage Gravy

Servings: 16
3 c chopped onion
1 c chopped celery
1 c chopped carrot
10 garlic cloves
1 (13 lb) turkey
1/3 c grated fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
5 TBS chopped fresh sage
2 TBS butter, softened
1 TBS minced garlic
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 lemon, halved
2 1/2 c chicken broth
1/3 c chopped shallots
1 c sherry
1/4 c all-purpose flour
1/4 c water

1. Preheat oven to 425 F.
2. Combine first 4 ingredients in bottom of a shallow roasting pan coated with cooking spray. Remove and discard giblets and neck from turkey. Rinse the turkey with cold water; pat dry. Trim excess fat. Starting at neck cavity, loosen skin from breast and drumsticks by inserting gainers, gently pushing between skin and meat. Lift win tips up and over back; tuck under turkey.
3. Combine cheese, 1/4 c sage, butter, minced garlic, 3/4 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper; rub mixture under the loosened skin and over breast and drumsticks. Rub turkey skin with cut sides of lemon halves; squeeze juice into turkey cavity. Place lemon halves in turkey cavity; tie legs together wit kitchen string.
4. Place turkey, breast side up, on vegetable mixture in pan. Bake at 425 for 30 minutes, and pour 2 cups broth over turkey. Tent turkey breast loosely with foil. Bake an additional 30 minutes.
5. Reduce oven temperature to 325 F for 1 1/2 hours or until a thermometer inserted into meat part of thigh registers 180 F, basing every 30 minutes. Remove turkey from pan. Cover and let stand 30 minutes; discard skin.
6. Place a large zip-top plastic bag inside a 4 cup glass measure. Pour drippings through a sieve into bag discard solids. Let drippings stand 10 minutes (fat will rise to the top). Self bag; carefully snip off 1 bottom corner of bag. Drain drippings into a medium bowl, stopping before fat layer reaches opening discard fat. Add enough of remaining chicken broth to drippings to equal 3 cups.
7. Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Coat pain with cooking spray. Add shallots; sauce 1 minute. Add sherry bring to a boil. Cook until reduced to 1/2 cup (about 5 minutes). Stir in remaining 1 TBS sage, and cook for 30 seconds. Add reserved drippings; bring to a boil.
8. Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup, level with a knife. Combine flour and water, stirring well with a whisk. Stir flour mixture into drippings mixture; bring to a boil. Cook 2 minutes or until thickened, stirring constantly. Stir in remaining 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper.

Camembert Mashed Potatoes

Serving: 10

1 1/2 (8 oz) rounds Camembert cheese
11 c cubed peeled Yukon gold potato (about 4 1/2 pounds)
1/2 c milk
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp black pepper
chopped chives

1. Cut cheese into 6 wedges. Carefully remove rind from cheese; discard rind. Chop cheese; let stand at room temperature while potato cooks.
2. Place potato in a large Dutch oven; cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 12 minutes or until tender. Drain in a colander; return potato to pan. Add cheese, milk, salt, and 3/4 tsp pepper; mash with a potato masher until smooth. Garnish with chives and addition pepper, if desired.

Truffle Mac and Cheese

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
olive oil
1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and caps sliced 1/2-inch
1/2 pound cremini mushrooms, stems removed and caps sliced 1/2-inch
3 tablespoons cream sherry
Kosher salt
1 pound pasta such as cavatappi
3 ounces white truffle butter, such as D’Artagnan
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 quart whole milk, scalded
12 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated (4 cups)
8 ounces extra-sharp Cheddar, grated (2 1/2 to 3 cups)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Heat the butter and 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large (12-inch) saute pan, add the mushrooms, and cook over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes, until they are tender. Add the sherry and continue to saute for a few more minutes, until the sherry is absorbed. Set aside.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add a splash of olive oil and a pinch of salt. Add the pasta and cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until al dente. Drain well.

Meanwhile, melt the truffle butter in a large (4-quart) saucepan and whisk in the flour. Cook for 2 minutes over low heat, stirring constantly with a whisk. Slowly whisk in the hot milk and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the white sauce is thickened and creamy. Off the heat, add the Gruyere, Cheddar, 1 1/2 tablespoons salt, the pepper, and nutmeg.

Combine the pasta, sauce, and mushrooms in a large bowl and pour them into a 10 by 13 by 2-inch baking dish.

Place the garlic and parsley in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade and pulse until they’re minced. Add the bread crumbs and pulse to combine. Sprinkle the crumbs over the pasta and bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until the sauce is bubbly and the crumbs are golden brown. Serve hot.

Brie Toast with Chardonnay Soaked Golden Raisins

This one was made for me by a most amazing hostess (who is also a gourmet chef by night).  Props go out to Laura Werlin’s Cheese Essentials (available at any bookstore).  And no, Laura Werlin was not the hostess who made these for me.  If you like this recipe, though, grab a copy of the book.  You will be glad you did.

1 1/2 cups water
1 cup Chardonnay ( I use La Ferme Julien – Cotes du Luberon available at Trader Joe’s)
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
1 vanilla bean, split in half vertically
1 cup golden raisins
12 ounces Fromager d’Affinois cheese sliced into 24 pieces (or any double-creme brie)
24 slices baguette cut 1/4 inch thick
4 tbsp (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted

In a medium-size saucepan, combine the water, wine, and sugar.  Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat until the sugar is dissolved.  Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 5 minutes.  Turn off the heat.  Scrape the insides of the vanilla bean into the liquid and add the remaining bean.  Add the raisins.  Let steep uncovered for at least 1 hour at room temperature.  Refrigerate overnight.

Drain the raisins, reserving the liquid.  Discard the vanilla bean.  Put the liquid back in the saucepan and bring to a boil.  Reduce to about 1/3 cup or until the syrup turns a deep golden color, 10 to 15 minutes.  Watch carefully so the syrup doesn’t burn.  If it starts to foam, remove from heat immediately (as a fire might start).  The syrup will continue to thicken as it cools, and have a texture similar to light maple syrup.  Cool completely.

Preheat the oven to 400 F.

Brush butter onto both sides of the bread slices.  Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown.  Let cool completely.

To assemble:
Put a slice of cheese on each toast.  Sprinkle with a few raisins and drizzle syrup over the top.