Slow Cooker Overnight Oatmeal

January 8, 2010
Oatmeal Serving

Oatmeal Serving

Oatmeal on a cold morning is a personal favorite.  I’ve seen a ton of recipes for Crockpot oatmeal and finally decided to try it.  I’ve tried my own version and it’s worked well on the first try!  The steel-cut oats give the oatmeal fabulous texture and the old-fashioned oats provide the creaminess that’s perfectly soothing on a cold morning.  Make in the evening and wake up to a perfect breakfast.



  1. Oatmeal Cooking

    Oatmeal Cooking

    Find a ovenproof bowl that will fit inside your Crockpot with some space around it.  Fill the Crockpot with water to half full.  Place the empty bowl in the Crockpot.

  2. Blend the water, oats and salt in the bowl.
  3. Turn the Crockpot on low and cook for 8 hours.
  4. Serve with maple syrup, raisins and cream if desired.

Makes 4 servings.

Notes: Yes, the oatmeal can be made by incorporating dried fruit like dates, apricot and cranberries in the cooking process, but the above is the purist’s version.


Meatloaf 101

October 28, 2009



Meatloaf 101

Meatloaf 101

I’ve used this meatloaf recipe by Martha Stewart for many years and always have great results.  Don’t omit the carrots!






  • 4 slices white bread, torn into pieces
  • 1 3/4 pounds ground beef
  • 3/4 pound ground pork
  • 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and cut into eighths
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 stalks celery, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 4 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 1 tablespoon coarse salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons packed light-brown sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In the bowl of a food processor, pulse bread until fine crumbs form. Transfer to a medium bowl; add ground beef and ground pork.
  2. Place onion, garlic, celery, carrots, and parsley in food processor; pulse until finely chopped. Add to beef mixture; combine using your hands. Add egg, 1/2 cup ketchup, 2 teaspoons dry mustard, salt, and pepper; combine thoroughly, using your hands. Place in an 8 1/2-by-4 1/2-by-2 1/2-inch loaf pan.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the remaining 1/4 cup ketchup and 2 teaspoons dry mustard, and the brown sugar; stir until smooth.
  4. Brush mixture over top of the meatloaf. Place the pan on a baking sheet to catch drippings, and transfer to oven. Bake until a meat thermometer inserted in the center reaches 160 degrees, about 1 1/2 hours. (If the top of the meatloaf gets too dark, cover with foil and continue baking.) Let meatloaf stand 15 minutes before slicing.

Serves 8 to 10

From The Martha Stewart Show, July/August 2000

Thai Food Craving? Twitter to the Rescue!

October 26, 2009

Last week, my guy and I had a craving for Thai Tom Yum/Ka Gai soup.  We used to get this tangy and spicy soup as take-out back when we lived in South Florida, but haven’t found a place we really like in the ‘burbs of Northern New Jersey.

I decided to try to make the soup myself, but with so many options and versions online, I sent a Tweet to my loyal followers requesting a vetted recipe.  Shortly after, Robyn Webb, who is a cookbook author, award-winning nutritionist and culinary instructor, answered with an offer to share a version of Tom Ka Gai that she uses in her cooking classes.  How great is that!?  If you’re on Twitter and are a foodie, I highly recommend you follow @robynwebb for interesting food insight.

I quickly stopped at the Asian market in Koreatown, around the corner from my office in Manhattan, for the ingredients, and promptly made the soup over the weekend to great success.  Here is Robyn’s recipe along with a photo of my results:

TOM KA GAI by Robyn Webb
(Lemongrass and Coconut soup)

Tom Ka Gai

Tom Ka Gai


  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 10 kaffir lime leaves, very thinly sliced
  • 6 – 2 inch pieces lemongrass sliced on a diagonal (use the bottom portion of the stalk.  You will need 2 stalks)
  • 4 slices galangal
  • 8 Tbsp fish sauce
  • 4 Tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 3/4 pound chicken breast, thinly sliced or cubed
  • 2 –  15 ounce cans coconut milk
  • Cooked jasmine rice (about 1/3 cup per person)


  • Sliced chili peppers as desired (Thai people can use up to 3 chili peppers per person!)
  • Cilantro leaves for garnish


  1. In a large stockpot, heat together the broth, lime leaves, lemongrass, galangal, fish sauce and lime juice.  Bring to a boil.  Add the chicken breast pieces and coconut milk.  Lower the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.  You may simmer longer if you wish for a stronger infusion.
  2. Place a scoop of cooked jasmine rice in the bottom of soup bowls if desired.  Ladle the soup over the rice.  Garnish each bowl with chilies and cilantro.

Makes 6 – 8 servings

Miso-Marinated Black Cod From “Nobu: The Cookbook”

October 13, 2009
Nobu Black Cod

Nobu Black Cod

For those of you who’ve been fortunate enough to dine at Nobu: you’re welcome for this recipe!  For those of you who haven’t: enjoy!


  • ¾ cup Mirin
  • ½ cup Sake
  • 2 cups White miso paste
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 4 Black cod fillets, ½ lb. each
  • 4 Hajikami stalks


Bring mirin and sake to boil in saucepan over high heat; boil 20 seconds to evaporate alcohol.

Reduce heat and add miso paste. Stir, increase heat and add sugar, stirring until dissolved. Cool.

Pat cod fillets dry and coat with miso mixture. Marinate 2 to 3 days, refrigerated.

Lightly wipe off miso but do not rinse. Put under broiler or hot grill until surface browns. Remove to preheated 400F oven and cook until done.

Place fish on plates and garnish with hajikami and miso mixture

Yield: 4 servings

Lasagna a la Laetitia

October 4, 2009
Lasagna Final Product

Lasagna Final Product

This simple lasagna recipe uses my grand-mother’s untraditional meat sauce.  The unbaked lasagna can be made and refrigerated the day before serving or can be frozen for up to a month (thaw overnight before baking per step 10).


  • 12 lasagna noodles from a 9-ounce package, no-boil lasagna (used Barilla)
  • 1 32-ounce container, large curd cottage cheese
  • 5 cups, Bolognese Sauce a la Laetitia
  • 1 8-ounce package of 5-Italian cheeses (from dairy aisle)
  • 4 tbs, grated parmesan cheese


  1. Heat oven to 375F.
  2. Butter a 13x9x3 lasagna pan.  Ladle 2 cups Bolognese Sauce a la Laetitia on bottom of pan.
  3. Layer 4 uncooked noodles over the sauce.

    Lasagna Step 3

    Lasagna Step 3

  4. Empty cottage cheese container over the noodles in the pan and spread evenly.  Sprinkle 2 tbs grated parmesan cheese.
  5. Layer 4 uncooked noodles over the cheeses.

    Lasagna Step 5

    Lasagna Step 5

  6. Ladle 2 cups Bolognese Sauce a la Laetitia over the last noodle layer.
  7. Layer 4 uncooked noodles over the sauce.

    Lasagna Step 7

    Lasagna Step 7

  8. Ladle 1 cup Bolognese Sauce a la Laetitia over the last noodle layer.
  9. Spread the package of 5-Italian cheeses, then remaining 2 tbs grated parmesan over the sauce.

    Lasagna Step 9

    Lasagna Step 9

  10. Bake covered with foil for 50 minutes.  Uncover and continue cooking until cheese is melted, about 10 minutes.  Remove from the oven and let stand 15 minutes before cutting.

6 Servings.

Beer Braised Slow Cooker Pork Roast

September 28, 2009
Beer Braised Slow Cooker Pork Roast

Beer Braised Slow Cooker Pork Roast

This recipe is simple and produces a flavorful roast with a rich sauce.  Perfect served with mashed potatoes.


  • 1 – 4lb pork roast, fat trimmed off
  • 2 tbs Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • 1 tsp each – salt, pepper
  • 1/2 tsp each – onion powder, garlic powder, ground thyme
  • 1 bottle beer, medium bodied
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 tbs flour
  • 1 tbs butter, softened


  1. Rinse pork roast with water and pat dry with paper towels.
  2. Spread mustard on roast and rub all over surface.
  3. In a small bowl, combine brown sugar and all the spices.  Rub over the meat.
  4. Place roast in the slow cooker, pour beer and broth around it.
  5. Cook on LOW for 9-10 hours, then remove roast from slow cooker.
  6. Combine softened butter and flour to form a paste.  Add to liquid from slow cooker and whisk to form a smooth sauce.  Serve sauce over meat.

4 Servings.

Grilled Salmon in Grape Leaves

September 12, 2009

Grilled Salmon in Grape Leaf

  • 4 Large grape leaves, fresh or in brine (if in brine, drain and rinse well)
  • 2 Salmon filet, 8 oz each
  • 2 Teaspoons, red wine vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons, vegetable oil
  • 1 Teaspoon, lemon juice
  • 2 Slices of lemon, cut in halves
  • 1/2 Teaspoon, garlic salt
  • Salt & pepper
  • Non-waxed dental floss or thin kitchen twine

Step 1:  If using fresh grape leaves, remove stems and blanche in boiling water for 1 minute. Remove from water and pat dry with paper towel.

Step 2:  Lay two grape leaves on a work surface so that stems are facing each other and leaf edges are facing opposite directions, slightly overlapping.

Step 3:  Place one salmon filet long ways over the grape leaves.  Sprinkle each filet with 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar, salt, pepper and 1/4 teaspoon of garlic salt.  Place 2 half lemon slices on each salmon filet.

Step 4: Wrap the overhanging grape leaves over the salmon to completely cover it and to form a tight packet.  Using dental floss or twine, tie 3 times across each packet to secure the grape leaves.  Rub 1 tablespoon over the packet to coat.  Repeat steps 2 through step 4 for second filet.

Step 5:  Heat grill on high.  Place both salmon packets on the grill and turn heat to medium.  Cook 4-5 minutes on each side.  Remove from grill and let stand 2 minutes.

Step 6:  Remove floss or twine and discard.  Open each packet by peeling back the grape leaves.  Discard the grape leaves.  Squeeze 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice over each filet and serve.

Serves 2.