Sunday, January 26, 2014

Artichoke and Roasted Garlic Hummus

For this recipe, I started with our Artichoke Hummus recipe and substituted roasted garlic in place of the fresh garlic. The result is delicious!

Serve with Pan-Grilled Pita Wedges, pita chips, and/or fresh veggies for dipping.


1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained, reserving the chickpea liquid
1 (14.5 ounce) can artichoke hearts, drained and quartered
2 or 3 cloves roasted garlic, to taste
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 1/2 tablespoons tahini

Put all ingredients in a blender or food processor, including 2 tablespoons of the chickpea liquid. Puree until fairly smooth. If too thick, add more chickpea liquid, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Serve at room temperature or lightly chilled.

-- 8 appetizer servings

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Eggs in Purgatory

When I was growing up, my Italian grandmother would frequently serve me these eggs cooked in marinara sauce, and it was one of my favorite ways to use up leftover sauce. I was also amused by the name.

This recipe is great for breakfast, brunch, lunch, or a light supper. Serve it with our Garlic Toast or plain, hearty bread to soak up all the saucy goodness.


2 cups Classic Marinara Sauce or your favorite plain red pasta sauce
4 eggs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley for garnish (optional)
1/2 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese (optional)

In a large skillet, simmer the marinara sauce over medium heat until well heated.

Gently and carefully crack the eggs into the skillet, spacing them evenly, with plenty of sauce on all sides. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Simmer until the whites are set and the yolks are cooked to the desired stage.

Sprinkle with the parsley and/or cheese, if using.

-- 2 servings

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Garlic Toast

Most garlic bread that I encounter here in the U.S. is loaded with lots of butter and often granulated garlic powder. According to my Italian grandmother, that stuff is not authentic.

Here is her version of garlic bread. It's simpler, much healthier, and very tasty.


4 slices hearty Italian bread, cut in half if very large
1 or 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, as needed
2 large cloves garlic, halved

Preheat broiler. Place bread slices in single layer on baking sheet. Toast under broiler until golden on one side.

Turn the bread slices over, and brush the untoasted sides lightly with the olive oil.

Broil until the oiled side of the bread is crisp and golden. The inside of the bread should still be somewhat tender.

Remove from broiler, and then rub the oiled sides of the bread with the cut sides of the garlic cloves. Use 1/2 garlic clove for each bread slice.

Discard the garlic cloves (or use as a garnish), and serve the toast immediately.

-- 4 servings

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Goat Cheese Pizza with Carmelized Onions (12-inch)

For this recipe, I started with the basics for some of my previously shared goat cheese pizza recipes, but kept this version simple, with just caramelized onions, mozzarella, and a dusting of fresh parsley at the end.

It's every bit as satisfying as the more complicated versions. There's nothing missing here!


1 Basic All-Purpose Pizza Crust (12-inch) or Thin Pizza Crust (12-inch) (or your favorite 12-inch pizza crust)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 medium red onion, halved and thinly sliced into 1/2 rings
1 small clove garlic, minced
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
3-4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
Salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.

Prepare the pizza crust and press into a 12-inch pizza pan, or form it into a 12-inch round on a baking sheet, with the edges slightly thicker to contain the toppings.

In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat, and saute the onion for 2 or 3 minutes, until the onion begins to soften. Turn the heat down to low, add the garlic, season with salt and pepper, and cook for another 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion starts to caramelize. Do not let the garlic get brown.

Spread the onion-garlic mixture evenly over the pizza crust. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the shredded mozzarella and the grated Parmesan. Sprinkle evenly with the goat cheese. Top it off with the remaining 1/2 cup of mozzarella.

Bake for 12-18 minutes, until golden.

Remove from oven and sprinkle with the parsley. Let sit for 5 minutes before slicing

-- 3-4 servings