Baked Salmon with Red Pepper Cream Sauce


2-3 Salmon filets
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
1 tbs butter
1 tbs evoo
1/2 cup half and half  
(I used fat free 1/2 and 1/2)
1/2 Tbs minced garlic
1 Tbs chopped parsley
1/2 Tbs chopped shallots
pinch of red pepper flakes
Black Pepper



Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 

In a medium saute' pan, heat the butter and olive oil.  Add in all of the ingredients 
except the half and half. Let cook, stirring often, until softened. Slowly pour and 
stir in the half and half. Lower temp to let simmer and let reduce, about 15 minutes.  

Brush the filets with extra virgin olive oil, sprinkle with a little salt and pepper 
and place in a glass bake dish sprayed with non-stick spray. 

Bake for 15 minutes, then spoon the red pepper sauce over the top and baked 
another 15 minutes. 


Valerie's Tarragon Beef Pasta with Mushrooms

Recipe and picture courtesy of Valerie Alava Ross 

This is similar to Beef Stroganoff....but not. More of a French or Italian feel. Tarragon always reminds me of French cooking. Of course, in this particular case I made fresh 
fettuccine...most definitely Italian. Perhaps its intercontinental. Maybe fusion? It was good and the sauce would go with any type of pasta...you could even switch out the 
pasta for rice or potatoes. It would work.

1 lb ground beef
1 large onion chopped
3 cloves garlic
1 lb fresh mushrooms, sliced
bunch of fresh chopped Tarragon (1/2 cup?)
tsp + Kitchen Bouquet (sauce/gravy enhancer)
2 tsp (?) cornstarch and a bit of water for a paste
tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 tsp Better than Bouillon and 1 1/2 cup water (or 10 ounces of beef stock/broth)
2 - 3 tbs (?) sour cream
Cooked Pasta

Cook the onion in a bit of olive oil for a couple minutes till translucent. Add ground beef and cook till browned thru. Add garlic and cook for a couple minutes more. Drain 

excess fat. Add broth of Beef Better Than Bouillon and water. Add a couple tsps cornstarch (?) to a cup and add a bit of water. Add to mixture on stove top. Stir well. Add 

Worcestershire sauce and Kitchen Bouquet. Cook on med heat a few minutes more. Sauce will start to thicken. Add more water if need be. Add sour cream, salt and pepper to 

taste. Add chopped Tarragon. Toss sauce in fresh cooked pasta. Top with more fresh Tarragon.


Hasselback Potatoes recipe courtesy of Ree Drummond


8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, softened
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/3 cup finely chopped chives
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 medium russet potatoes, scrubbed


Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
Stir together the butter, olive oil, chives and some salt and pepper in a small bowl.

Place a potato between the handles of 2 wooden spoons or 2 chopsticks. Slice the potato into thin slices, leaving 1/4 inch at the bottom unsliced; the spoon handles will prevent you from slicing the potato all the way through. Repeat with the remaining potatoes.
Put the potatoes on a baking sheet and brush on the butter mixture, making sure to get in between all the slices. Bake until tender and crisp, 55 to 60 minutes.

Video:  http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ree-drummond/hasselback-potatoes.html#lightbox-recipe-video


Homemade Gorgonzola/Bleu Cheese Dressing

Recipe and picture courtesy of Valerie Alava Ross 

1/2 cup Gorgonzola or Bleu cheese crumbles
1/4 cup mayo
1/4 cup sour cream
splash Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup buttermilk or milk.
*measurements are approximate*

Combine all ingredients - let sit at least 1/2 hour before serving


Italian Style Beef Soup


1 large steak, cut into small pieces
½ large red onion, chopped
6 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
2 cans or 1 bag frozen whole green beans
2 cans or 1 bag of frozen sliced carrots
2 48 oz cans beef broth
1 lb mini shells or ditalini pasta
3 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Italian seasoning, oregano, parsley, salt and pepper to taste


In a large soup pot on high, cook the beef and onions in the olive oil until browned, then add in the garlic. Saute' 5 minutes or so.

Season well, add diced tomatoes, stir to combine. Add in the beef broth, cover and bring to a full boil. Lower temp and and let simmer for about 10-15 minutes.

Check for seasoning again, then bring back to a boil and add in the pasta. Cook as directed on package. Add in the carrots and string beans and lower to simmer.

Serve with grated cheese on top.

This makes a very large pot, cut everything in half to make less. 


Cream of Tomato and Basil Soup

Recipe and pic courtesy of Valerie Alava Ross


2 large cans of San Marzano Tomatoes 
1 med onion diced
Bunch of fresh chopped basil
Squeeze of agave nectar (or a couple tbsp reg table sugar)
1 cup fresh grated Parmesan (add more to taste)
Salt & pepper to taste
Olive oil
Splash of cream

Sauté onion in a bit of olive oil in a heavy stock pot. Cook till tender, 3 - 4 minutes. 
Add San Marzano tomatoes. Cook on med heat for 5 - 10 minutes. With a stick blender, mix the soup in the pan till the tomatoes are broken down. Can use a reg blender if need be. A potato masher will work in a pinch, but soup will be more chunky. 
Add Parmesan, a big splash of heavy cream and chopped basil. Mix well. Add salt, pepper and more Parmesan to taste. Garnish with a dollop of sour cream and fresh basil.


Honey Dijon Crockpot Chicken

Recipe and pic courtesy of Chandra Graham 

I used a honey dijon dressing, added extra mustard, minced garlic, olive oil, honey, pepper, and basil. 
Cooked on low for almost 6 hours. I made rice and broccoli too that I poured the juice/sauce over