Cooking: Dinner

Loving Linguine Alle Vongole

My Michael and I absolutely love Cape Cod.  Both of us grew up spending time, especially summertime, on the Cape.  He frequented Falmouth and I, Brewster. After much persuasion and some sweet talk, My Michael convinced me that Falmouth would be home someday. On our Falmouth weekends, we adore dining at our favorite (perfect-to-us) Italian restaurant… Continue reading Loving Linguine Alle Vongole

Cooking: Dinner

Survey Says! Grilled Pork Tenderloin; My Boys #3 Favorite!

This is a super easy pork marinade.  The finished product is deeply flavorful, tender and simple, comfort food! You can make this two to three days ahead and throw it on the grill for a quick and easy (and mouthwatering) mid-week dinner.   Serve with steamed broccoli and steamed brown rice.

What you will need:
1 lb Pork Tenderloin- butterflied

For the marinade

1/4 cup of Evoo (extra virgin olive oil)
1 large shallot- minced
3 gloves of garlic- minced
1 tablespoon of garlic powder
2 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
2 Tbsp Pure Maple syrup
The juice of one small lemon
Kosher Salt to taste
Fresh Pepper to taste


What to do:
Combine all marinade ingredients in a resealable bag. Add the butterflied pork into the bag and work the marinade into the meat. Refrigerate for at least 24 hours- 48 is better.

When you are ready to cook the pork, set the grill on medium hight heat. Bring the pork (at room temperature- take out about 1 hour before grilling). Sear on all sides then turn the grill to medium and cook to an inside temperature of 155. Let it rest 10 minutes, slice and serve.

Sparkle On, Friends!


Cooking: Dinner · Hors 'douvres · My family's favorites

Survey Says! Arancini; My Boys #3 Favorite!


My guys LOVE these little spheres of rice-y love.

Here is the third  post  sharing my boys’ eleven favorite recipes in my series “Survey Says!”

Arancini is an Italian name for risotto balls.  There are many variations for stuffing them including peas and pancetta.  But I prefer to keep it simple by stuffing with mozzarella only.

And yes, I know. I deep fry them. But it is so worth it, and it is a special treat. Live a little.

ARANCINI Italian Rice Balls

What you need:

  • One cup of risotto*
  • One medium onion, minced
  • Four cups of chicken stock
  • One-quarter pound mozzarella cubed
  • One egg, beaten
  • One cup of plain panko bread crumbs
  • Approximately four cups of canola or vegetable oil

*For best results, use risotto which has completely cooled (leftover is even better.) If you do not make the risotto ahead of time them, add a generous amount of grated Parmigiano cheese to it once cooked which helps it to bind.

What to do:

  • Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a saute pan and add the onions.
  • Cook them until they are translucent (about 3 minutes.)
  • Cook the risotto according to the package and add the onions. (I always cook my risotto in chicken stock because it adds a richer flavor.)
  • Shape the risotto into a two and a half-inch diameter ball.
  • Press a hole in the middle with your thumb and place a few cubes of mozzarella cheese inside.
  • Reshape rice ball until mozzarella is fully enclosed.
  • Roll each rice ball into beaten egg and coat evenly with breadcrumbs.
  • Cook in batches in a deep fryer at 365 degrees for about five minutes. Be careful not to overcrowd them.
  • Once removed, place the arancini on paper towels to absorb any excess oil. Serve hot or at room temperature. Serving suggestion: Serve with marinara sauce and parmesan cheese. Also, these are the first nibbles to disappear at a cocktail party! (make them smaller so that they are bite-sized.)
  • (yields approximately 15-18 rice balls)
Cooking · Cooking: Dinner · Cooking: Sides

Survey Says! Twice Baked Potatoes; My Boys #6 Favorite!


Twice Baked Potatoes

A few weeks ago I posted, “Survey Says!”  It listed the top eleven recipes from my kitchen according to my boys.

As promised, here is the second post in the series of sharing those recipes.

Sparkle On, Friends.

Mary’s Twice Baked Potatoes

What you need:

  • Four large russet potatoes washed, and each pierced several times
  • Six tablespoons unsalted butter melted
  • 1/3 cup of sour cream
  • 1/2 cup of hot milk
  • 2/3 cup of shredded sharp cheddar plus more for topping
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Fresh minced parsley
  • Optional: Minced Scallion, Bacon bits

What to do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Put the potatoes on the rack in the center of the oven and bake for one hour.
  3. Remove the potatoes from the oven.
  4. Hold each potato with a towel and then slice the potato lengthwise.
  5. Hollow out the potato leaving a layer of the potato (so that the skins remain intact.)
  6. Place the potato into a mixing bowl.
  7. Brush the skins with butter, sprinkle the with salt and pepper and return to the oven while you make the filling.
  8. Mash the potato with the butter. Add the sour cream. Stir in the milk a bit at a time and continue to mash until the mixture is blended. Add more milk if needed for your desired consistency
  9. Season with kosher salt and pepper
  10. Fold in 1/2 cup of the cheddar cheese
  11. Remove the skins from the oven and refill them with the potato mixture, mounding it slightly.
  12. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top of the potato filling.
  13. Set the potatoes a baking sheet, and bake until heated through about 20 minutes.
  14. Garnish with fresh parsley (or with scallion or bacon bits.)
  15. Serve immediately.
Cooking · Cooking: Dinner · Cooking: Pasta · My family's favorites

Survey Says! Linguine a la Vodka; My Boys #2 Favorite!

My Michael has always loved Linguine A La Vodka.   He seemed to have taken that gene from his dad who happens to be an inventive and great cook. His dad, Lon, took Michael to different restaurants in Providence’s famous Italian neighborhood, Federal Hill.  It was there where he opened the doors and introduced Michael to… Continue reading Survey Says! Linguine a la Vodka; My Boys #2 Favorite!