Beef Fillet with Red Wine Mushroom Sauce


2 tbsp olive oil
12 oz baby portobello mushrooms
2 large shallots – thinly sliced
2 Tbsp fresh tarragon
1/2 cup red wine (whatever you’re drinking will work)
2 cups beef broth
salt and pepper to taste
2 lbs beef fillet
a drizzle of grape seed or olive oil


Preheat oven to 420 degrees F

Preheat saute pan for 1 minute on medium heat. Add 2 tbsp olive oil and saute mushrooms & shallots for about 4 minutes to soften. Add red wine and reduce heat to simmer. Allow to simmer until wine is reduced by half (2 to 5 minutes) and add broth and tarragon. Simmer for 10 minutes. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

Preheat another skillet on high for 1 minute. Season fillet on all sides with salt and pepper. Add drizzle grape seed (excellent for cooking on high temps) or olive oil in hot pan and sear fillet on all sides until browned, 2 minutes each side approx.

Once the fillet is seared remove to a pan. Pop into the preheated oven for 8-10 minutes (for medium rare).

Let rest for 10 minutes when cooked to let the juices redistribute back into the meat before slicing.

Spoon sauce over sliced steak and serve.

This recipe is also linked to...

Delicious Dishes

Grapes Rolled in Goat Cheese with a Pistachio Crust


1/2 cup cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup goat cheese, room temperature
1 Tbsp liquid honey
40 seedless grapes
2 cups chopped pistachios


Combine the cream cheese, goat cheese and honey using an electric mixer or a spatula. Chill slightly if it is unmanageable.

Cover each grape with approximately a teaspoon of the cheese mixture.

Roll the grapes in the nuts, making sure to completely cover so that the cheese does not stick together or get on people’s fingers.

Chill for at least one hour before serving.

This recipe is also linked to...

Sweet Indulgences Sunday
Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Nuts

Butternut Squash & Apple Bisque


3 cups peeled and seeded butternut squash, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 cup orange juice or apple cider
1 tbsp bourbon or dark rum (optional)
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 (3 inch) cinnamon stick
1 cup sliced leeks, white part only
1 medium tart apple, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup butter or margarine
4 cups chicken broth
1/3 cup whipping cream
salt and pepper to taste


In a roasting pan, toss 3 cups of squash, juice/cider, bourbon/rum and brown sugar; add cinnamon. Cover and bake at 450 degrees F for 30-40 minutes or until squash is tender. Discard cinnamon; drain squash, reserving cooking liquid. Set squash and liquid aside.

In a Dutch oven, saute leeks, apple and onion in butter until tender. Add broth; bring to a boil. Stir in cooked squash; cook for 5 minutes. Add cream, salt and pepper; heat through. Cool slightly. In a blender or food processor, process soup in batches until smooth. Return all to the pan; heat through (do not boil).

Ladle soup into bowls. Garnish as desired, I like crispy, crumbled bacon and a sprinkling of fresh, grated Parmesan cheese or a thinly sliced piece of apple.

This recipe is also linked to...

This Week's Cravings: Apples
Delicious Dishes
It's a Blog Party's Fall Fest Apple Recipes 2011
Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Apples
Savory Sunday
Sweet Indulgences Sunday
Gluten-Free Wednesdays
Seasonal Inspiration Saturday

Apple Cookies


2 cups brown rice flour
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp xanthan gum
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
1 egg
1/4 cup apple juice
1 1/2 cups chopped apples
1 cup pecans, chopped


Preheat oven to 400 F.

Combine flours, baking soda, xanthan gum, salt, cinnamon and cloves in medium bowl.

In another bowl, cream sugar, butter and egg. Beat dry mix into egg mixture, until well mixed. Beat in apple juice. Stir in apples and pecans.

Spoon onto parchment lined baking sheet and bake about 10 – 12 minutes.

Cookies should be golden brown, but not too soft.

This recipe is also linked to...

Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Apples
Gluten-Free Wednesdays
This Week's Cravings: Apples
It's a Blog Party's Fall Fest Apple Recipes 2011

Pasta Primavera


3/4 pound whole-wheat or whole-grain pasta
1 pound (1 bunch) medium asparagus, cut into 1 1/2-inch sections
1 15-ounce can chicken stock
1/4 tsp salt
Pepper, to taste
1 1/2 Tbsp olive oil, plus 2 teaspoons extra for serving
4 cloves garlic, sliced
1/4 red onion, chopped small
1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
4 oz shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
4 oz cremini mushrooms, trimmed and cut into quarters or sixths, depending on size
1 cup frozen peas
2 pieces sun-dried tomatoes
2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
6 oz baby spinach
2 scallions, chopped


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta.

Combine the asparagus, 1/4 cup of stock and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a large skillet. Cover and cook over medium heat until al dente, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl with any remaining stock. Set aside.

In the same skillet, heat the 1 1/2 tablespoons of oil with the garlic and onion over low heat. Cover and cook until the vegetables soften but do not brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the red pepper flakes. Add the mushrooms, and raise the heat to medium-high. Cook until the mushrooms are lightly browned and softened, about 5 minutes. If mushrooms begin to stick to the bottom of the pan, add 2 tablespoons stock and stir to release. Add the peas, the rest of the stock and 1 tablespoon of the parsley. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook about two-thirds of the way, about 6 minutes.

Remove 1 cup of pasta water and add it to the skillet with the vegetables. Drain the pasta in a colander, and add it to the skillet. Bring liquid to a boil; cook until reduced by about one-half. Add all but about 2 tablespoons of the Parmesan cheese, the asparagus, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper and the spinach. Cook, tossing with tongs, until the liquid is reduced and thickened and the spinach is wilted, 1 to 2 minutes.

Divide the pasta among 4 bowls, and sprinkle with scallions and sun-dried tomatoes. Drizzle each with 1/2 teaspoon oil, and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.

Apple-Stuffed Pork Loin


2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup white onion, diced fine
1/2 cup celery, diced fine
1 cup Granny Smith apple, diced
1 Tbsp fresh sage, chopped
1 Tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
1 cup toasted breadcrumbs
1/2 cup low-sodium chicken/veg broth
1 1/2 lbs pork loin
a drizzle of grape seed or olive oil
3 oz Hazelnuts (Filberts), pulsed in food processor to breadcrumb consistency


Preheat oven 350 degrees F.

Preheat saute pan on medium heat for 1 minute. Add 2 tbsp olive oil along with onion and celery. Saute for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add diced apple and herbs and continue sauteing for another 3 minutes. Once softened add breadcrumbs and broth and mix everything together. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Put stuffing on a plate and set aside.

Place pork loin on a clean cutting board and using a sharp knife slice along the side opening the loin like a book. Do not separate the top from the bottom. Once the “book” is open lay some plastic wrap on top, use a mallet or a heavy bottomed saucepan and hit the meat a few times to thin out a little, which will tenderize it. Once you’ve got all your aggressions out, lay some plastic wrap on your work surface and on top on that lay 5 pieces of twine (approx. 12″ long) perpendicular to you approx 2" apart. Place the tenderized pork across the pieces of twine so that cut you made to the meat is going the same direction as the twine. Use as many pieces of twine as needed to securely tie it all up. Season the meat with salt and pepper.

Spoon the filling in the center. Begin rolling the meat like a Swiss roll nice and tightly ensuring the filling stays inside. Tie each string tightly. Any excess filling that falls out, stuff it back in. Season the outside and drizzle with olive oil. This will help the hazelnuts to stick to the outside. Rub the seasoning in.

Place the crushed/chopped hazelnuts on a plate. Gently roll the loin in the hazelnuts to coat all sides. Lay on foil-lined baking pan and put it in the oven for approx 75 minutes or until the internal temperature is 160 degrees F.

When ready remove and let rest for 5 minutes to let the juices redistribute in the meat.

Snip the strings and discard them, slice the meat and serve.

This recipe is also linked to...

This Week's Cravings: Apples
It's a Blog Party's Fall Fest Apple Recipes 2011
Delicious Dishes
Cast Party Wednesday

Pork and Roasted Pears


3 Tbsp maple syrup (grade B is fine)
3 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp ground pepper
4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
1 pound pork tenderloin, divided into 4 pieces
2 pears, quartered and cored
1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped (or 1 teaspoon dried)


In small bowl, whisk together the maple syrup, soy sauce, mustard, pepper and garlic cloves. Transfer to a large, sealable plastic bag, then add the pork, seal and refrigerate for 3 hours or overnight.

Heat the oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the pork and pears. Remove the pears after about 3 to 4 minutes, and keep warm. Cook pork for about 6 minutes, then turn and continue to cook until cooked through, about 5 minutes longer. (If the bottom of the pan becomes too dark while cooking, lower the heat slightly and add a few tablespoons of water to the pan.)

Top the pork with the pears, sprinkle with rosemary and serve.

This recipe is also linked to...

Savory Sunday
Sweet Indulgences Sunday
Seasonal Inspiration Saturday
Simply Delish Saturday
Delicious Dishes

Apple Coffee Cake


1 cup sorghum flour
1 cup tapioca flour
1/2 cup millet flour
2 teaspoons of xanthan gum
1 1/4 cups sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1 1/4 cups milk
3 eggs
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
3 medium apples, diced (you can leave the skins on if you want)
3/4 cup gluten-free old-fashioned oats
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup chopped pecans
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 cup melted butter/margarine


Preheat your oven to 350 degree and grease a 9x13 dish.

In a medium bowl, mix the sorghum flour, tapioca flour, millet flour and xanthan gum. Set aside 1/4 cup of the mixture. Add the sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg to the flour mixture.

Add the milk, eggs and oil and mix until well combined. Add the apples and let sit for 10 minutes.

Pour into your prepared dish.

In a medium bowl, mix all the oats, brown sugar, pecans, cinnamon, butter and the 1/4 cup of reserved flour until well-combined and crumbly. Spinkle on top of the cake batter.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

This recipe is also linked to...

Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Apples
Gluten-Free Wednesdays
Cast Party Wednesday
This Week's Cravings: Apples
It's a Blog Party's Fall Fest Apple Recipes 2011

Grape & Rosemary Focaccia


3/4 cup warm water (105° to 110°F)
2 Tbsp milk, slightly warmed
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
6 Tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 cups Sovereign Coronation grapes, seeded 
and halved
1 tsp fresh rosemary
2 Tbsp raw or coarse sugar
2 tsp coarse sea salt


In the bowl, stir together the warm water, slightly warm milk, sugar, and yeast. Let this mixture sit until it becomes foamy (about 10 minutes).

After the mixture becomes foamy, in the same bowl, add the flour, salt and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and mix well on low. If you are using an electric mixer you can attach the dough hook, crank up the speed to medium-low and knead the dough for 8 minutes longer.

Next, brush a large bowl with a good amount of olive oil. Put the dough into the bowl and brush the top of it with more oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let it rise in a cool place until it doubles in bulk, 1.5 – 2 hours.

Press the dough down with a floured hand. Turn the dough out onto a floured counter and divide it into two balls. Brush a large baking sheet (or two small ones) with olive oil, place the dough balls on it and brush the top with again, more oil. Set it aside for about 20 minutes, lightly covered with a kitchen towel.

After 20 minutes, dip your fingers in olive oil and press and stretch each ball of dough into an 8 to 9-inch circle-ish/square-ish shape. Cover again with the towel and let it rise for another 1 1/4 hours in a cool place.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Brush tops of dough with the rest of the olive oil and sprinkle the grapes, rosemary, coarse sugar and coarse sea salt evenly over the dough (you can push the grapes lightly into the dough so they are not just resting on top).

Bake for 15 minutes, until the crust is golden brown and puffed around edges. Let cool before serving.

Serve warm or at room temperature.

Note: You can use a bought focaccia bread or a bought pizza dough instead of making your own.

Note: I like to omit the sugar and sprinkle on a little bit of goat's cheese.

This recipe is also linked to...

Delicious Dishes
It's a Blog Party's Fall Fest Recipes 2011
Sweet Indulgences Sunday
Cast Party Wednesday
Seasonal Inspiration Saturday
Simply Delish Saturday

Carob Truffles


1/4 cup flaxseeds, ground
1/4 cup unsweetened carob powder, sifted
1/3 cup walnuts, finely chopped
1/3 cup raw almond butter
1/3 cup honey
1 tsp vanilla extract
small bowl of unsweetened shredded coconut


Process all ingredients until mixture forms a dense ball. Remove from processor and roll small portions between palms of hands to form one inch balls. Roll in coconut to coat. Place on serving platter and refrigerate.

This recipe is also linked to...

This Week's Cravings: Honey

Fondue Mac and Cheese

Adapted from: Married …with dinner's recipe post


4 Tbsp unsalted butter, plus more for dish
1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
2 cups milk
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 to 1/2 cup Chardonnay (or other white wine)
1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp dry mustard
1/2 pound sharp Cheddar cheese, grated
6 ounces Gruyère cheese, grated
1/2 pound spiral or elbow pasta


Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Butter a 9×9 baking dish, and set aside.

Place bread in a medium bowl. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 1 Tbsp butter. Pour butter into bowl with breadcrumbs, and toss. Set breadcrumbs aside.

Fill a large saucepan with water, and bring to a boil. Add pasta, and undercook by 2 to 3 minutes, until the outside of the pasta is just cooked. Transfer pasta to a colander and drain well, shaking the colander to remove as much water as possible from inside the pasta. Set pasta aside.

Heat milk in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Melt remaining butter in a high-sided skillet over medium heat. When butter bubbles, add the flour and whisk for 1 minute. While continuing to whisk, slowly pour in hot milk. Continue cooking, whisking constantly, until the mixture bubbles and becomes thick, but do not allow to boil. Take the saucepan off the heat, and whisk in the wine, salt, nutmeg, black pepper, cayenne pepper, thyme, mustard and both cheeses, reserving 1 cup of cheese for topping.

Stir macaroni into the cheese sauce, then pour mixture into prepared dish. Sprinkle remaining cheese over top, followed by the buttered breadcrumbs. Bake until browned on top, about 30 minutes. Transfer casserole to a wire rack, and cool 5 minutes; serve hot.

This recipe is also linked on...

This month we're on the hunt for the ULTIMATE MACARONI and CHEESE recipe. Check out the what we've come up with and cast your votes...

Chicken Salad with Grapes and Walnuts with Maple-Dijon Dressing


6 - 7 large skin-on, bone-in chicken breasts
1 onion, cut into chunks
1 celery stalk, cut into a few pieces
1 tsp whole black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1 cup halved black seedless grapes
1 cup halved green seedless grapes
4 stalks celery, cut lengthwise, then thinly sliced
1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
1 cup walnuts, lightly toasted and broken up
half a bunch of flat-leaf Italian parsley, minced
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup real maple syrup
2 Tbsp dijon mustard
Rice vinegar, a few generous shakes
Freshly ground black pepper


Put chicken, onion, celery, peppercorns, and bay leaf into a stockpot and cover generously with water. Bring to a gentle simmer, then immediately turn the heat down to low. You do not want it bubbling, or the chicken will get tough and dry. After awhile, take out a piece of the chicken and cut down into it to see if it's cooked through. If not, return it to the pot. As soon as the chicken is cooked through, remove it from the pot (you can strain the stock and save it to make soup if you don't want it to go to waste).

When the chicken is cool, remove the skin and bones and cut it into chunks.

To toast the walnuts, put them on a baking sheet and into a 300 degree oven. Check every couple of minutes until they just start to turn golden. Remove immediately and put on a plate to cool.

In a large bowl, combine the chicken, walnuts, green and black grapes, celery, green onions, and parsley.

In a jar, shake up to combine the dressing ingredients: olive oil, maple syrup, dijon mustard, and rice vinegar. Taste and see whether the mixture is to your liking. If you like it sweeter, add more syrup, more acidic, add more vinegar. Pour dressing over the chicken mixture and toss thoroughly.

Add plenty of freshly-ground black pepper and salt to taste and toss again.

This recipe is also linked to...

Sweet Indulgences Sunday
Savory Sunday
Cast Party Wednesday
Delicious Dishes

Gluten-Free Crepes


2 eggs
2 tbsp milk or water
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup tapioca flour


Beat eggs with fork. Beat in water, vanilla and tapioca flour. Batter will appear very liquidy. Let sit for 5 minutes.

Cook over medium high heat on a crepe pan or low-sided skillet brushed with oil (should be just hot enough that a drop of water sizzles and jumps across the pan).

Grasping the pan by the handle pour batter (about 1/3 cup) on pan and quickly tilt all directions, swirling the batter to form a very thin round layer of batter.

Cook until the batter loses its wet look and the edges start to brown a bit.

Carefully turn with a spatula and brown the other side for a few moments. Remove and stack on a plate and keep warm until ready to fill and roll with a sauce.

This recipe is also linked to...

Gluten-Free Wednesdays

Almond-Apple Crisp


1 1/2 cups blanched almond flour
1 cup gluten-free oats (or another cup almond flour)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup melted butter
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
6-8 medium apples, peeled and chopped into 1-inch cubes or sliced


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl, combine almond flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Mix in melted butter and vanilla.

Place apples in a 9x9 inch baking dish. Sprinkle almond mixture evenly over the apples. Cover and bake for 50 minutes on low rack.

When apples are soft and their juices bubble, remove cover and bake 10 more minutes to brown crisp. Serve warm.

NOTE: I use a mixture of Granny Smith, Cortland, Empire and McIntosh apples for this recipe.

Cran-Apple Crisp: Add fresh or frozen cranberries in with the apples in a large bowl. Add 1 Tbsp cornstarch, 2 Tbsp white sugar and a sprinkle of nutmeg then mix to combine before dumping into the pan. Do the topping the same as the recipe says.

This recipe is also linked to...

Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Apples
Everyday Sisters' Sharing Sundays: Nuts
Gluten-Free Wednesdays
This Week's Cravings: Apples
It's a Blog Party's Fall Fest Apple Recipes 2011
Food on Friday: Cherries and Almonds