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Fish Steaks Braised with Bell Pepper, Olives, and Lemons Recipe

Fish Steaks Braised with Bell Pepper, Olives, and Lemons Recipe

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  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup Kalamata olives, pitted, coarsely chopped
  • 2 lemons, halved lengthwise, cut crosswise into thin slices
  • 4 8-to 9-ounce fish steaks (such as halibut or salmon; each 1 inch thick)
  • 1 chopped fresh Italian parsley

Recipe Preparation

  • Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and bell pepper. Sauté until onion is translucent, about 12 minutes. Add garlic and stir 1 minute. Add olives, lemons, and wine and bring to boil.

  • Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in heavy large skillet over high heat. Sprinkle fish steaks with salt and pepper. Add to skillet and sauté until first side browns, about 2 minutes.

  • Turn fish over. Add bell pepper mixture and juices; add parsley. Reduce heat to medium; simmer uncovered until fish is just opaque in center, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

  • Divide fish and sauce among shallow bowls; drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil.

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Lemon Basil Cauliflower Steaks

(It’s been a while since my last post (if anyone is still there) and my NEXT post I will give a look at what our life was like during the antique show. 12 hour days and most of the time I was too tired to cook when I got home and definitely too tired to try a new delicious recipe for this blog.)

Can’t say I was ever a cauliflower fan in my earlier years. That would be decades ago! I don’t remember my mother or grandmother ever cooking cauliflower. I’m not sure why because my dad had the best garden around and grew just about anything he could think of even Jerusalem Artichokes and who the heck knew what to do with those things back then.

Over the years I’ve done some delicious things with the funny looking head. My Tomato and Cauliflower Soup recipe is one of those recipes that is pretty to look at and delicious to eat. My Cauliflower Potato Salad is infamous with my friends although now I add one potato to the mix for flavor and texture. I’ve done Cauliflower Steak and Onions before but I have to say I like this Lemon Basil Cauliflower “Steak” better.

Once I found a beautiful head of purple cauliflower (and purple is my favorite color) and couldn’t resist making my Pasta with Purple Cauliflower and Walnut Cream Sauce. There are many other cauliflower dishes on my blog you can “search” for but before I quit telling what I’ve done in the past you have to take a look at my Winter White Soup which is one of my favorite cream soups.

Did you know cauliflower contains many nutrients, high in fiber, high in choline, good source of antioxidants, very low in calories and provides many other health benefits.

I came across this recipe at “cooking on the weekends” blog and thought of my thai basil growing in my little aero garden and the fact that I have not used any of it so why not try a new cauliflower recipe for dinner tonight. I changed the orange to lemon which I loved and ended up sprinkling a little pork belly crumbles (or bacon) on top. The only problem I have with these cauliflower “steak” recipes is that unless you get very large head of cauliflower, you will only get two steaks out of a head. I did cut the other sections so they would have a flat bottom so they would brown nicely and hold the butter. If you don’t want to do the steaks then I would at least cut large pieces and flatten the bottoms to get better roasting.

BLAST FROM THE PAST: With Spring not too far away this Lemon Basil Sorbet makes a light dessert for the end of your meal. (there is also a fig sorbet along with the lemon.)

Buy the biggest head of cauliflower you can find. I only got two “steaks” out of this one.

The ingredients for the compound lemon butter.

Mix all the ingredients for the butter…..

Put the butter on a piece of plastic wrap and roll into a cylinder. Refrigerate until firm.

I only got two “steaks” from a small head of cauliflower. I cut the other pieces flat on the bottom so I would get a nice brown on them.

After you have browned the cauliflower steaks on one side turn over and cook another 12 minutes. When you remove from the oven, cut a slice of the lemon basil butter and put on top of each piece. Just toss some of the extra butter with the other cauliflower pieces. Serve immediately.

Chicken Fricassee

If there is one dish in the whole of the world that I simply cannot resist it is a juicy Chicken Fricassee. If you don&rsquot know the phrase &ldquofricassee&rdquo &ndash it is a cooking method derived from the fifteenth century French cuisine where ingredients are sautéed, cut up and braised in a white sauce. A simple stew with mouthwatering results!

Okay, fine, I didn&rsquot cut up my chicken &ndash but I prefer my Chicken Fricassee to be pieces of chunky chicken smothered and cooked in a rich and creamy &ldquowhite&rdquo sauce. Virtually any type of ingredient can be used in this dish from meats like beef, pork and fish to vegetables alone.

The &ldquowhite sauce&rdquo mentioned here isn&rsquot the usual béchamel we are used to but a combination of white wine and cream &ndash that makes this meal even tastier.

Like the older recipes of Chicken Fricassee I added small onions and button mushrooms to bake with my chicken, the perfect accompany to this lovely dish.

There are simply too many versions of this recipe to say which is original. I like to keep my version fairly simple and easy.

This recipe of Chicken Fricassee is the perfect dish for a lazy, chilly and cozy Sunday Lunch. The simple thing about this meal is that it is super easy to make, you will have more time with the family and less time in the kitchen as it is one of those quick one pot wonders! Sounds good, hey?

Beef Trinchado

It is the beginning of another glorious week, and since the weekend was filled with grocery shopping, a braai with friends and a little house renovation &ndash I have a need for something comforting, saucy and spicy for dinner.

There is little comfort food that comes close to this amazing Portuguese &ndash South African beef stew. If you are not familiar with Beef Trinchado, it consists of braised beef cooked in a lot of garlic and chili, red wine, onions and cinnamon.

The thing that makes this meal great is the fact that crusty bread, like olive ciabatta, is used to soak up all the delicious sauce and I even added a good measure of marrow bones to my pot, because, let&rsquos face it &ndash marrow and toast&hellip (I&rsquoll leave this bit for your imagination)

The idea here is to have lots of sauce to dip the bread in, you can even add crushed olives to the mix too. Beef Trinchado is wholesome and hearty &ndash it was said that this dish was the &lsquopeasant meal&rsquo where the less fortunate would cook up cauldrons of meat with wine and spices. It sure does make for a pretty amazing winter dinner, if I have to say so myself. If stew is what you&rsquore after, this one is for you! Enjoy!



Valentine Luncheon .

Here is a Valentine luncheon for young girls suggesting the "SweetSixteen" idea in a novel and beautiful manner. Spun sugar should be usedexclusively in most of the table decorations. Have a round table set inpure white and crystal, the latest fad. At each girl's plate have aflower done in candy in a realistic manner.

On each side of the table have small, red heart-shaped candy basketsfilled with red candy hearts. Imitation baskets of rock candy tied withbows of candy ribbons holding preserved citron, ginger and nuts glacé.The fruit salad should be served in paper cases imitating pink roses.Over the salad have a white mayonnaise dotted with pink rose petals. Thecrackers heart shaped. The ice cream should be served in white candybaskets with tall handles. For place cards use pink hearts.

A Lincoln Dinner .

As most of the evening is spent in the dining-room, particular attentionis given to the decoration of it, and the appointments of the table, tomake them original and attractive. The national colors prevail [Pg 40] in theuse of bunting and flowers, and none save those peculiar to Februaryshould be utilized tropical foliage is dispensed with, and, inasmuch asKentucky was Mr. Lincoln's native state, only such evergreens as arenative to that commonwealth&mdashas holly, cedar, laurel, etc.,&mdashshould beused to supply the necessary greenery disposed about the room, theparticular arrangement of which must be decided by the furnishingstherein and by individual taste.

The table is laid in the regulation white, dotted over with AmericanBeauty petals and violets, the edge being draped in laurel tied withtri-colored ribbon. In the middle is laid a round mat of woodland mossto simulate bluegrass, and on it rests a miniature log cabin, aroundwhich is built a fancy rail fence made of chocolate sticks a number oflittle pickaninnies are seen playing about the house, and grin out atthe guests, which renders the effect very realistic and interesting.Little jugs tied with blue ribbon are also prominent features. In frontof each cover stands a diminutive barrel labeled "Old Bourbon," but inreality holding nothing more harmful than delicious bon bons, unless ithappens to be a stag affair, when the genuine article would bepreferable. Ices are presented in fancy moulds decorated with smalldarkies, and in the form of the dome of the Capitol, or any othersuggestive figure that one prefers.

In issuing the invitations the guests are informed that one and all willbe expected to contribute to the general enjoyment by relating somestory or anecdote of Lincoln. [Pg 41]

For St. Patrick's Day .

Cream of Potato Soup with Powdered Parsley,
Celery Curls (Pigtails),
Salted Almonds,
Pigs in Blankets,
(Oysters skewered in slices of bacon and broiled),
Croquettes shaped like Potatoes, resting in Beds of Cress,
Stuffed Baked Potatoes (Fixed with tiny wooden skewers to resemble Pigs),
Spinach served in Shamrock Decorated Cases,
Shamrock-shaped Bread and Butter Sandwiches,
Sweet Watermelon Pickle or Spiced Peach, decorated with Angelica Shamrocks,
Salad of French Beans, Peas and Pearl Onions in Lettuce Leaf,
Ice Cream in Slices decorated with Green Sugar Shamrocks,
or Pistachio Ice Cream,
Small Cakes decorated with Harps of Gold Candies,
Coffee, Buttermilk.

For favors there are Irish hats, clay pipes, Irish flags, harps,shamrocks, bon bon boxes, green snakes, etc. Oxalis answers for shamrockand pots of this arranged in a "fairy ring" with fairy lamps orgreen-shaded candles make a pretty, inexpensive centerpiece.

Attractive Easter Luncheon .

An extremely attractive Easter luncheon is as follows: The table isround, covered with a snowy [Pg 42] damask cloth, exquisite china, sparklingglass and silver. The center piece, a small gilded cart, wreathed inviolets and smilax, holds decorated eggs colored in tints of yellow andpurple, while mingling with them are clusters of violets tied withlavender ribbons, one end extending to the front of each cover and thereattached to wee yellow chickens resting in nests of violets, in whosebeaks are tiny cards with name in gold.

Have also nests of spun sugar containing candy eggs, wax tapers burningunder creamy lace shades. At each end of the table tall vases filledwith ferns and garlanded with vines and at every plate daffodils growingin pots covered with green tissue paper.

Clear Tomato Soup,
Baked Shad, Bermuda Potatoes,
Roast Spring Lamb, Creamed Onions,
Orange Halves,
Chicken Croquettes, Celery Salad,
Neapolitan Ice Cream, Sponge Cake,

Cap and Bells Luncheon for April First .

For an April fool luncheon write your invitations in red ink on duncecaps, cut out of yellow paper and seal with red seal. Call your luncheona "Cap and Bells" or "Harlequin" luncheon, as you prefer. Use bowls ofred and yellow tulips, or red carnations, in yellow bowls. Rustic wallpockets with pussy willows, tied with pale green ribbon, are delightfulApril decorations. When the guests assemble give [Pg 43] them snapping bon bonswhich make paper caps. Let them wear these caps to the dining-room. Donot put names on the guest cards let each draw a card from a dunce cap.Have the card clowns cut from water-color paper and a suitable quotationand a number on each one. This number marks the order of procedure tothe dining-room and the privilege of choosing seats. In this way no onecan regard the card quotation as offensively personal. If you wish an"April Fool" menu, serve it as a buffet luncheon before going to thetable. You can find imitation dishes of every sort at the caterer's.

Over the round dining table suspend a hoop wound with smilax or red andyellow ribbon. From this hoop hang tiny bells by invisible wires. AJapanese "windbell" is especially suitable. It consists of pieces ofmetal of odd shapes so suspended that they strike in the wind. Lightyour table by red candles with yellow dunce cap shades. In the center ofthe table have a clown or "Pierrot" in costume of red with large yellowdots, driving toy geese by red and yellow ribbons. These geese may bemade of water-color paper and filled with salted almonds and bon bons.At each plate have a "fool's stick" or wand. This is made by winding ashort stick with red and yellow ribbon, the ends of which are fastenedat the top with a gilt-headed tack, and tiny bells are fastened to theends of the ribbons. Use maidenhair ferns at the base of the centerpiece and the candlesticks to give a touch of green. Serve: [Pg 44]

Clam Bouillon with Alphabet Crackers,
Celery Curls, Radishes,
Salted Almonds, Lobster Patties,
Bread and Butter Sandwiches,
Cucumber Jelly, Creamed Peas,
Squab on Squares of Hominy in Wreath of Cress,
New Potatoes with Parsley,
Wild Grape Jelly, Mint Ice,
Spring Salad of Sliced Cucumbers,
Tomatoes, Radishes in Lettuce Cups,
Cheese Straws,
Vanilla Ice Cream in Cone Shape with Large Strawberry
Tipped with Whipped Cream on Top and Ring
of Fresh Strawberries at the Base.

Decoration Day Luncheon .

This pretty luncheon combines two features&mdashit can be given onDecoration Day, and also as a bon voyage luncheon. Have bands of red,white and blue ribbon radiate from the center of the table to eachplate, and a large cutglass bowl filled with white flowers, roses,hyacinths and narcissi and ferns stand in the center. Before each platehave a tiny ship in full sail, the name of the guest written in gilt onthe silk sail. The favor for the guest of honor might be a bon bon boxmade in imitation of a shawl strap. Inside have a tiny silk flag.

Red and white should be carried out in the menu. Have a white soup withwhipped cream. The salmon salad served in white paper boats with tinyAmerican [Pg 45] flags sticking in the prow. The ices frozen in form of flags.The cakes red, white and violet icing.

For a Hallowe'en Dinner .

Have a big pumpkin filled with yellow chrysanthemums for the center ofthe table and at each place a tiny pumpkin made into a candle with agreen pumpkin leaf shade. Light the room with jack o' lanterns or yellowChinese lanterns. For the menu serve cream of corn soup in yellow bowls.Serve turkey, cranberry jelly, mashed turnips, baked sweet potatoes, onyellow plates. Serve fruit salad in the red apple cups, with pumpkin pieand yellow ice cream frozen in shape of pumpkins, for dessert. Servecoffee in yellow cups.

Fourth of July Dinner .

A beautiful summer dinner for July Fourth is as follows: On the tablehave a centerpiece of pineapple cloth over pale green satin, on whichplace a flat willow basket of green and white striped grasses thatborder the garden flower beds. From this basket have wavy lines of palegreen gauze ribbon reaching to each corner of the table, the ribbonsending in flat bouquets of daisies tied with grasses. The dinner cardsshould be cut out of water-color paper in the shape of long, narrowspikes of lilies and fastened to the glasses by flaps on the backs. Themenu is clam bisque lobster cutlets with egg sauce timbales ofsweetbreads new carrots with fine herbs crown of lamb with mint saucepotato croquettes and salsify [Pg 46] peach ice truffle-stuffed squab, cressasparagus and lettuce salad green cornucopiae of ice cream filled withlemon ice white cake with green icing coffee, nuts glace.

A Luncheon for Thanksgiving .

Have this sentiment painted on a white or dark gray background framed incedar boughs and placed over your mantel:

The waning year grows brown and gray and dull,
And poets sing November, bleak and sere
But from the bounteous garnered harvest store,
With grateful hearts we draw Thanksgiving cheer.

Place a row of white candles in pewter candlesticks across the manteland display all the old china, pewter, brass and copper about thedining-room. Use cedar boughs to decorate the chandelier and plate rail.In the center of the bare table have a miniature stack of wheat (theflorist can furnish this). Peeping out of the wheat have toy turkeycandy boxes filled with almonds or hickory nut meats and raisins. Havethe candles on the table set in flat cedar wreaths and scatter pineneedles over the surface of the table. At each plate have a little dolldressed in Puritan costume with the name card tied around her neck. Ifone wishes to add a bit of color to the table use old-fashioned blue andwhite or colored bowls, in one pile glossy red apples, in another purpleand white grapes, in another oranges. Here are some suitable Colonialdishes: Brown bread, roasted fowl, oysters in every style, cakes ofIndian meal called bannocks which are spread before the fire on largetins and baked before the fire, brown sugar and [Pg 47] molasses forsweetening fruit cake, molasses cake, pumpkin, apple and mince piejellies, jams and conserves (a sweet mixture of fruits). Use all theold-fashioned china and silver possible.

Thanksgiving Dinner .

First an old-fashioned oyster stew served in old white, gold-bandedtureen.

Next fish-balls&mdashnot great, soggy old-fashioned fish cakes, but thedaintiest little golden-brown balls, fried in a basket in hot fat, andnot more than an inch in diameter, just a good mouthful. Have themserved individually, smoking hot, heaped up in the daintiest littlepiles, with a few tiny sprigs of baby parsley for garnish.

Next will come the turkey, a monster bird, "with stuffing" made ofItalian chestnuts.

It goes without saying that with this will be served the historiccranberry jelly, which may be moulded in a square tin and served in tinycubical blocks. After the sweet potatoes are baked the contents will beremoved, whipped light as a feather with two well-beaten eggs, a littlemilk, pepper, salt and butter, the skins refilled, stood on end in a panand the tops browned in the oven.

Then two good old-fashioned pies, one pumpkin, the other mince, eachabout two inches thick.

A Christmas Dinner .

If one wishes to develop the idea of Santa and his sleigh, buy a dolland dress as Santa and fashion a [Pg 48] sleigh out of cardboard and color red.About Santa and his sleigh, which may be filled with bonbons or tinygifts like animals from Noah's ark, etc., for the guests, have imitationsnow of coarse salt or sugar, or cotton sprinkled with diamond dust.Have tiny sprigs of evergreen standing upright for trees. At each platehave a tiny sleigh filled with red and green candies and light the tablewith red candles and shades in shape of Christmas bells. Have the dinnercards ornamented with little water-color Santa Claus' heads or littletrees. If one uses the Christmas bell idea have the bells covered withscarlet crape tissue and swung from the chandelier. One can have theletters on them spell "Merry Christmas." In the center of the tableplace a mound of holly with bright red berries have red candlesarranged in any design one chooses, and far enough away so their heatwill not ignite the tissue paper bells. White paper shades with spraysof holly painted or tied on make pretty Christmas shades. Have thebonbons, nuts, salads and ice cream served in cases in shape of bells,or have the ice cream frozen in bell shape. If one wishes to decoratewith the tiny trees, fasten them upright in flower pots and cover thepots with red paper. Hang bonbons or sparkling objects and tinsel orlittle favors of bells for the guests from the branches of the trees.The holly wreaths may be used in any way the fancy dictates&mdasha largecenter wreath and if the table is round, a second larger one near theedge of the table, leaving room for the plates or single candlesticksset in tiny wreaths at intervals between the [Pg 49] larger wreaths. A wreathdinner is very pretty and easy to plan, for the different dishes may begarnished with wreaths of parsley, radishes, endive, cress, or thesweets with rings of kisses, macaroons, whipped cream roses, candies,etc.

Here is a suitable menu. Oyster or clam cocktail, wafers, consomme,bouillon or cream of celery soup, celery, radishes, small squarecrackers. If one wishes a fish course, creamed lobster or salmon withpotato balls. Roast Turkey or game of any sort, glazed sweet potatoes,corn fritters, creamed peas, peach, currant or grape jelly, hot rolls.Cranberry sherbet nut salad with plain bread and butter sandwiches,individual plum puddings with burning brandy, ice cream in any desiredshape, white cake or fruit cake if one does not have the plum pudding,cheese, crackers, coffee.

An Unusually Original Dinner .

A quail dinner given recently will furnish ideas for others who wish togive a dinner out of the ordinary. Let the oblong table on which thedinner is served represent a field with miniature shocks of grain andstubble in which are quail, pheasants' and other birds' nests. A borderof toy guns stacked mark the edge of the field. At each man's place havea toy figure of a hunter with some toy fastened to the back telling somejoke on the diner. The women can have birds' nest candy boxes surmountedby birds. The name cards can be English hunting scene postals. [Pg 50]

Blue Points,
Celery Hearts, Olives, Stuffed Olives,
Cream of Asparagus with Asparagus Points, Crackers,
Broiled Fresh Spanish Mackerel served on Lettuce Ribbons,
Cucumbers, Cannon Ball Potatoes,
Sherry, Champagne Punch,
Quail on Toast, French Peas, Stewed Mushrooms on
Toast, Hot Rolls,
(Salad, Head Lettuce, French Beans, Ring of Chopped
Whites of Eggs, Ring of Powdered Yolks
of Eggs, French Dressing,)
Crackers and Melted Cheese,
Chestnut Ice Cream molded in Form of Broiled Quail and
Asparagus Tips, Eggnog Sauce,
Coffee and Liqueurs in the Drawingroom.

A Spring Dinner .

To secure a pretty effect pull the extension table apart and fill in thecenter space with palms and ferns, keeping the foliage low enough not tointerfere with the vision of the guests. Across each end of the tablelay a pale green satin and lace cover on which place French basketsfilled with yellow daffodils and pink tulips. Before each place set tallstem vases filled with yellow daffodils resting on wreaths of pinkbegonias. Have the pink and yellow candies in French baskets tied withthe same colors. Use monograms of the guests on plain white cards withtiny silver boots tied to a corner for favors. Serve: [Pg 51]

Green Grapes Dipped in Sugar,
Cream Salsify Soup in Bouillon Cups,
Bread Sticks,
Deviled Lobster in Shell,
Cucumber Mayonnaise,
Squab on Toast, Creamed Potatoes,
Ice Cream in Form of Fruits,
White Cake, Coffee.

College Dinners .

To those who may have the planning of college dinners, the descriptionof this Harvard dinner may not come amiss.

In the center of the table have a large bowl of red tulips red shadeson the candles standing at either end of the table. The favors can besmall boxes in the shape of foot-balls filled with red candies. Theplace-cards in the shape of foot-balls, cut out of red cardboard, andpainted in black and white by each plate a roll with a small Harvardflag, of silk. Place the olives, nuts and red candies in small papercases covered with tissue paper, which match in shape as well as incolor, the central bouquet of tulips.

Even in the menu the color scheme may be carried out as far as possiblewith tomato bisque, deviled crabs served in the shells, chickencroquettes, fillet of beef, garnished with cress and radishes, beetsalad and ice cream baskets filled with strawberries. The croquettes canbe made in the shape of foot-balls. The beets for the salad are boileduntil tender, and when cold scooped out and filled with dressed celery. [Pg 52] A few curved cuts made around the sides of the beets give the effect offlower petals. The little cakes, served with the ice-cream, are coveredwith red frosting.

If Princeton be the Alma Mater in whose honor the feast is spread,tiger-lilies should be the flowers used on the center of the table, andthe menu would of course, differ much from the one already given.Instead might be substituted black bean soup with slices of hard boiledegg fried scallops and Saratoga potatoes sweet bread patés chickenwith sweet potatoes and carrots cut with a vegetable cutter into whatare called shoestrings lobster salad served in paper boxes, havingaround the outside, ruffles of orange crépe paper and orange ice servedin the natural oranges. If one prefers a change from the wishbonecreation, Noah's Ark tigers may stand guard over the patés.

A Yale dinner would be the most difficult to arrange as there are nofruits or vegetables that could rightly be called blue, unless somevarieties of grapes and plums might be considered as coming under thathead. But with a large central bouquet of cornflowers, with blue ribbonsextending from this to each cover, where under the bow or rosette willbe laid the corn-cob pipe or other souvenir, and with blue crépe paperused to decorate some of the dishes, the table will present quite asattractive an appearance as either of the other dinners while thegenial guests will probably enjoy the feast fully as well, and be quiteas loyal, even if the roast and salad do not show the college colors. [Pg 53]


The idea for this dish came to me after I made some kebabs for a wedding I catered. I had dozens of skewers rolling around in my car, and I kept stabbing myself on them, so I wanted to use them up! This is how new recipes are born!

Want an egg with that? I threw a couple of eggs on the grate while I was cooking, turned them regularly, and took them off when they were hot on all sides (after 10-12 minutes). They peeled more nicely than I had imagined they would, and really rounded out skewers.


You'll need wooden skewers for this dish

  • Olives
  • Leftover or fresh foil-roasted potatoes
  • Sausage (I used breakfast sausage but any kind would be great), cut into chunks
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Olive oil
  • Condiments for serving


  1. Thread the different items onto the skewers in patterns that look pleasing to your eye. I like to start and end with green olives because they're grippy and hold all of the items in place. My skewers went: olive, sausage chuck, onion, potato, onion, sausage chunk, potato, olive.
  2. Season the skewered food with salt and pepper and any other spices you'd like.
  3. Brush the grate/grill with oil to keep the ingredients from sticking.
  4. Grill the skewers until the meat is done. Getting a little color on the meat and veggies is ideal but not required.
  5. Serve with any condiments you'd like: pesto, ketchup, may, chimchurri, barbecue sauce, you name it!

Fire Toasted Oats

This is basically granola, but because the temperature of the fire is harder to control than that of an oven, I cook my oats without sweetener, and add a little bit of brown sugar or maple syrup, later on.


  • Rolled oats
  • Sunflower oil
  • Salt
  • Toasted nuts
  • Cinnamon and other pie spices
  • Dried fruits, chopped
  • Maple syrup or honey


  1. Butter or oil a piece of foil and fold it into a tray. Or, use a cookie sheet if you've got one.
  2. Toss the oats with sunflower oil and salt and toast until browned and a little crispy, stirring regularly.Remove from heat.
  3. When the oats have cooled, stir in nuts and fruits and sprinkle with cinnamon and other spiece if you'd like (I used some cardamom).
  4. Drizzle on some oil and then the vinegar or lemon juice.
  5. Serve with milk or yogurt and drizzle with honey or maple syrup.

Grilled Bananas with Peanut Butter & Smoked Salt

Browning bananas makes them taste almost like candy. If you want a campfire dessert that's just a little bit healthier than a s'more, this might be it!


  • Sunflower oil
  • Bananas, cut in half lengthwise
  • Peanut Butter
  • Smoked salt
  • Allspice
  • Dried fruits, chopped
  • Maple syrup or honey


  1. Oil the grill and place the halved bananas cut side down over the flames.
  2. As the bananas cook the skin around the edges will start to darken.
  3. When a banana has gotten some nice browning on the fire-facing side, flip it so that the skin side is on the grate and cook for a few more minutes.
  4. Remove the bananas from the heat and smear wtih a thin layer of peanut butter. Sprinkle on the smoked salt and allspice.
  5. If you wish, you can mix honey and rum to make an excellent drizzle, but if you're trying to avoid extra sugar, the bananas are pretty sweet on their own.

Plantain Pancakes with Berries & Syrup

These delicious pancakes are gluten-free, and if you use alternative milk, and oil as the fat, they will be vegan, too! Because it's unlikely that you'll be able to run a blender at your campsite, it would be wise to make the plantain purée at home, freeze it, and bring it along in your cooler. Then, you can thaw it and add the other ingredients, when you're camping. Recipes for batters and doughs rely on correct ratios, so unlike most of our recipes, this one actually includes quantities. These can be served with honey and fresh berries maple syrup jelly or jam or any other toppings you would like.


  • 4 Green Plantains, pureed
  • 4 Eggs
  • 4 T. oil or melted butter
  • Milk or alternative milk until the batter is the consistency of pancake batter
  • 2 pinches salt
  • 1/2 t. baking soda
  • Cinnamon
  • Nutmeg


  1. Mix together all ingredients until the mixture is uniform.
  2. Heat fat in a pan over the fire, and when it's hot, make a test pancake. If it cooks too quickly, move it to a cooler part of the fire. If it cooks too slowly, move it to a hotter part of the fire. Also, try your test pancake for seasoning and adjust the seasonings as desired.
  3. Cook your pancakes and top with desired toppings.

Smoky Skirt Steak & Eggs with Roasted Tomatoes

Skirt steak is the perfect cut to prepare over a fire. It's thin and cooks quickly, but it's also tender and has a nice amount of fat. Sometimes you can find local skirt steak at farmstands. There are also lots of amazing folks in Vermont who sell their eggs at small-town stores – sometimes gas stations even have local eggs – so keep your eyes peeled as you shop!

It's hard to get the proportion of salt right in a dry rub, so even though I mix together all of the other seasonings, I keep the salt separate, and sprinkle it on, on its own.

Click on image to view and print full size recipe


  • Tomatoes or cherry tomatoes
  • Skirt steak (if you can't find skirt, use any kind of steak you like, and adjust the cooking instructions accordingly)
  • Smoked paprika
  • Chipotle powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Black pepper
  • Salt, or smoked salt
  • Eggs


  1. Rub the tomatoes with a little olive oil - or if they're cherry tomatoes, toss them in olive oil and sprinkle with a little salt. Larger tomatoes should be cut in half and placed cut side down in a pan or on a piece of foil with the edges turned up to hold juices. Place tomatoes over the fire.
  2. Remove the steak from its package and pat dry with paper towels*
  3. Combine the paprika, chipotle, garlic powder and black pepper to make a dry rub. Use the most paprika and the least black pepper. Add any other ingredients that you enjoy (cumin?).
  4. Rub the blended spices onto the steak. Then, sprinkle each side liberally with salt.
  5. Keep an eye on the tomatoes, you want them to be nice and hot and allowing them to get a little brown on the edges is even better.
  6. Let the steak sit for around 10 minutes. If the tomatoes finish during that time, remove them from the heat.
  7. Place the steak on the grate or cook it on a piece4 of foil. If you do the latter, turn up the edges to hold the drippings, as you did with the tomatoes. I prefer to use foil because I hate for any delicious meat juices to be lost to the fire.
  8. Oil a pan that is appropriate to the number of eggs you wish to cook and place it over the heat. When hot, crack in the eggs and sprinkle them with salt and pepper.
  9. When the steak is brown on the first side, flip it and cook the second ide. Because skirt steak is thin you'll need to watch it closely.
  10. Monitor the tomatoes, the eggs and the steak. As each one reaches the doneness you prefer, remove it from the heat. The steak should rest for around 5 minutes before you cut it.
  11. Cut the steak thinly and top with tomato and eggs

* Why do you dry the meat? Because if you don't, the first thing that happens when it hits the heat is create steam, and steam inhibits browning. To get a delicious brown crust on the meat, it's best to start with a nice, dry exterior.

Cheesy Grits with Scallion

This super flexible dish is a great base for breakfast. Serve it with bacon sausage fried eggs sautéed mushrooms wilted greens roasted tomatoes or anything else that pleases you. The usual ratio of water to grits is around 4 to 1. When I'm cooking over a fire, unless I'll be watching the grits like a hawk, I use just a little extra liquid.

Click on image to view and print full size recipe


  • Water, milk or stock
  • Butter or oil
  • Salt
  • Seasonings as desired
  • Grits (coarsely ground cornmeal)
  • Scallion
  • Cheddar cheese or another cheese you prefer


  1. In a saucepan, combine the cooking liquid of your choice with a couple tablespoons of fat and a sprinkling of salt. Bring it to a simmer over the fire.
  2. Whisk in the grits (if you don't have a whisk, use a fork) and add any spices or seasonings that you'd like.
  3. Simmer until the mixture is smooth and cooked through. When you sample a spoonful the texture should be pleasing and not at all gritty.
  4. Meanwhile, slice the scallion. I like to use both the white and the green parts.
  5. While the grits are cooking, you can also grate or slice the cheese.
  6. After your remove the grits from the heat, stir in the cheese and the scallions. Season with salt and pepper to taste.


Summer Tomato Salad with Herbs & Cheese

This is a riff on the famous Caprese salad. I've never loved eating whole leaves of basil, so instead, I use a mix of minced herbs. Fresh mozzarella is gorgeous, but there are so many cheeses that go well with tomatoes, that there's no reason to lock yourself in! Experiment with different varieties and see what you like best. I've used crumbled blue cheese, fresh goat cheese, slices of an aged bloomy rind cheese (like Brie or Camembert) and even hard grating cheeses such as Parmigiano Reggiano and pecorino.

As for the tomatoes, buy a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. I love to combine halved, mixed-colored cherry tomatoes with slices of larger tomatoes. Ask your favorite farmer to recommend their favorite tomato varieties!


  • Tomatoes, sliced or halved
  • Salt
  • Herbs, minced. Basil, dill, chives a smidgen of oregano, spearmint, fennel fronds, parsley
  • Cheese
  • Toasted walnut oil or olive oil
  • Aged balsalmic vinegar or a squeeze of lemon


  1. Arrange tomatoes on a plate or platter
  2. Sprinkle the tomatoes with salet and then with minced herbs. Let your taste guide how much you use.
  3. Crumble, grate or slice the cheese and distribute over the tomatoes.
  4. Drizzle on some oil and then the vinegar or lemon juice.
  5. So easy!

Tuna Salad with Corn, Blue Cheese, and Olives

Most people aren't going to light a fire three times per day, so it's great to have some interesting cold meals up your sleeve. This recipe calls for tuna but could also be made with nearly any leftover seafood or meat.


  • High quality tuna, or leftover chicken, pork, salmon, or shrimp, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • Mayo
  • Roasted corn kernels, cut off the cob
  • Blue cheese, crumbled. I like to use Vermont cheeses such as Bayley Hazen Blue Boucher Blue or Mad River Blue
  • Green olives, chopped
  • Olive juice, to taste
  • Red onion, chives, or shallot, minced
  • Fresh dill, if desired
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Combine all ingredients, mix and mash everything together, and season to taste. A little squeeze of lemon could be a nice addition, too.
  2. Serve with potato chips.

Roasted Zucchini, Snap Pea & Cherry Tomato Salad with Farmer Cheese

It doesn't get much more summer-y than this combo, with each item barely kissed by the flames to bring out its sweetness. There are plenty of vegetables that would make nice additions, or could be subbed in, especially eggplant and red peppers.

If you don't eat cheese, you could dress this with any vinaigrette or other salad dressing that you like.


  • Zucchini, yellow squash, pattypan squash, or a combination, cut into half lengthwise
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Sugar snap peas, ends and strings removed
  • Lemon or vinegar
  • Farmer cheese (I used Sweet Rowen Farmstead's Garlic & Tomato variety)


  1. Coat the cut side of the squash with oil, season with salt and pepper, and place flat-side down over the fire. Cook until the squash has grill marks and some brown from the flames, and is starting to soften a bit. Flip to the rounded side, and cook a few minutes more. When finished, the squash should be tender, but not mushy. Remove from heat.
  2. In a pan or Dutch oven, heat another bit of oil, and sauté the cherry tomatoes until they have started to burst. Add the peas, and cook, stirring, until the peas are bright green. Remove from heat.
  3. When they've cooled enough to touch, cut the zucchini in half lengthwise, and cut the strips into bite-sized pieces (quarter moons).
  4. Season the vegetables with a squeeze of lemon or a drizzle of vinegar, and more salt or pepper, if needed.
  5. Top with farmer cheese, or toss the vegetables with the cheese to make a creamy coating.
  6. If you're using salad dressing instead of the cheese, skip steps four and five, and mix the veggies with dressing, instead.

Salad with Roasted Broccoli & Peppers with Basil Vinaigrette


For the dressing:

  • 1 cup oil
  • 1/3 cup white wine vinegar or lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoon mustard
  • 1 close garlic, minced
  • Black pepper to taste
  • Basil, minced
  • 1 box or bag of pasta, whatever shape you like
  • Grated cheese

For the salad:

  • Baby lettuce or mesclun mix, cleaned and placed in a salad bowl
  • Broccoli, chopped and roasted over the fire
  • Bell peppers, roasted over the fire, peeled, seeded and sliced
  • Pumpkin seeds, toasted over the fire on a piece of foil


  1. In a mason jar, shake the dressing ingredients until they're combined.
  2. In a salad bowl, toss the lettuce with the dressing.
  3. Drizzle a bit of dressing over the broccoli and peppers and place them on top of the salad.
  4. Sprinkle with pumpkin seeds

Fruit Salad with Honey Whiskey Sauce

This can be made with any fruits you like. The sauce makes it pretty special!


  • Your favorite fruits: I used oranges, grapefruit, clementine, apricots, nectarines and cherries. You could also use bananas, pineapple, mango, whatever your heart desires
  • Whiskey
  • Honey
  • Vanilla
  • Bay leaf
  • Salt


  1. Peel fruits that need it and cut all of them into bite-sized pieces. If you want to make a really beautiful, tender pieces of citrus fruits, you can supreme them.
  2. When the fruit is ready, bring the whiskey, honey, vanilla and bay leaf to a simmer in a small pot. Cook for a couple of minutes at a rolling boil add a pinch of salt and remove from heat.
  3. When the sauce has cooled slightly pour it over the fruit

Salad with Strawberries, Burrata & Blueberry Vinaigrette

This salad is super simple but looks really elegant when you put it on a plate. If you don't like burrata, or can't find it where you are, use fresh mozzarella, blue cheese, or goat cheese. Dijon mustard is really the best mustard to use in dressings, and it's not particularly expensive. Maille is a nice brand, as is Fallot, and Grey Poupon will work, as well.


  • 1 c oil (I like to use 1/2 olive oil and 1/2 sunflower oil)
  • 1/3 c white wine vinegar or fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 1/2 t Dijon mustard
  • Something in the garlic/onion family, minced. You can use shallots (classic!), red onion, garlic, scallion, etc.
  • 1/2 c blueberries


  1. If you're making the dressing home, puree all ingredients in a blender. The mustard should cause the dressing to emulsify, which means that it will seem a little creamy, even though there is no dairy.
  2. If you're making the dressing at your campsite, mash the blueberries with a fork and put them in a mason jar with all of the other ingredients. Shake it up! The emulsification won't hold, but it will taste great.
  3. Taste the dressing and re-season if needed. If you like things a little sweeter, add a touch of honey, maple syrup or sugar. And don't forget, the dressing will be stretched out over all of those salad ingredients, so it won't seem as intense.


  • Beautiful fresh greens such as baby lettuce or mesclun
  • Strawberries, sliced
  • Burrata, cut in half, or some other white cheese that is to your liking
  • Sesame seeds


  1. In a bowl, toss the lettuce with just a spoonful of dressing. You want the dressing to coat the lettuce, but you don't want it to be swimming. Taste a leaf to see if it needs more dressing. If the dressing isn't coming through enough, consider whether you need more dressing, or if the dressing itself needs to be punchier! Sometimes, sprinkling a little salt or lemon juice over the salad is the answer.
  2. Put the salad on plates and top with strawberries, cheese and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.
  3. If you'd like, you can drizzle a little honey over the top.


Roasted Corn with Garnishes

Leave the corn in its husk but peel off a couple of the driest outer leaves. Cook the corn on the grate, turning it every couple minutes, until the outer layers are charred, the kernels are bright gold, and, if you'd like, there's a little darker brown on some of the kernels, too (as in the picture!).

Once the corn is cooked, you can keep it in the husk and store it in your cooler, cut the kernels off for easy use later, or eat it

A few great ways to eat ears of corn

  • With melted butter, a sprinkling of smoked salt, another sprinkling of smoked paprika, and a squeeze of lemon
  • Smeared with mayo, rolled in cheese, and dressed in lime juice, chili powder, and salt (this is called elote, or Mexican street corn)
  • Coated in pimento cheese, which can be homemade, or purchased. Some specialty shops in Vermont make their own amazing iterations of pimento cheese. To make it at home, combine grated cheddar, cream cheese, mayo, roasted red peppers, olives, garlic, and a little cayenne pepper in a food processor or blender, and purée.
  • Coated in chicken liver pâté and sprinkled with grated parmesan, or another grated hard cheese.

Foil Packet Potatoes

This is super simple, and most people have probably made it, before. We used multicolored baby potatoes, and made sure that they were completely enrobed in foil, to keep in the steam.


  • Potatoes or baby potatoes, cut into uniform pieces
  • Olive oil or butter
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Dill, minced
  • Onion, scallion, garlic, or shallot, minced


  1. Tear off sheets of foil, and put a couple cups of potatoes on each. The more potatoes in the packet, the longer it will take to cook.
  2. Add olive oil or butter, or another fat that you prefer (bacon grease would be great!).
  3. Season with salt and pepper, and sprinkle with dill and whichever allium (plant in the onion family) you prefer.
  4. Wrap up the packets. If there's a gap at the top, wrap with an additional layer of foil.
  5. The packets can be cooked on the grill, which will take longer, or in the coals, which will require a more constant level of attention.
  6. To cook the potatoes in the coals, rake a bed of coals away from the flames, and put the packet or packets on top. Check and turn regularly.
  7. The potatoes are done when they are soft all the way through.

Mashed Sweet Potatoes with Lime Juice, Tequila & Agave Syrup

This recipe isn’t like anything I’d ever tasted: It’s sweet and rich, with a little zing from the limes and the tequila. I wanted a starchy side dish to go with a Mexican-themed meal, and didn’t want to buy out of season corn, but still had access to last year’s sweet potatoes from a local farm. And, I had some tequila kicking around! This recipe could easily be made vegan by substituting oil for the butter. Toasted sesame oil would be a really nice addition.


  • 1 large sweet potato for every two people, or more if you want leftovers (you do!), peeled or unpeeled, depending on your preference, and chopped
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Butter
  • Freshly squeezed lime juice (it's great to zest the lime before squeezing, and use the zest in this recipe or in something else
  • Agave syrup (if you can't find this you can use maple syrup or honey, but the agave gives it a pretty unusual flavor
  • Tequila (I used a Reposada - or lightly aged variation


  1. Cook the sweet potatoes with salt, pepper and butter in a foil packet, or a covered pan until super tender and mashable.
  2. Add a bunch of butter (you can use some cream or milk if you'd like, but using all butter makes the texture super silky and rich) and mash until smooth and creamy. If you have a whisk, it makes a perfect mashing tool. If not, improvise! A fork would be perfectly sufficient. You can leave the mash a little chunky if you prefer or make it smooth.
  3. Mix in lime juice, agave and tequila, tasting as you go until the acidity and sweetness are nicely balanced.
  4. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Main Dishes

Garlicky Beef Meatballs

Nothing complicated here! Just seasoned ground beef with lots of garlic, and whatever spices make you happy. I like to make a batch of meatballs, keep 'em in the cooler, and use 'em in a few different ways: on top of pasta or rice, in a baguette as a sandwich, or chopped and dropped into omelettes.


The spicing can go a few different ways. here are some options:

  • Chile powder, chipolte, cumin, cilantro
  • Fennel, sage, thyme
  • Orange zest, dill, red onion
  • Smoked paprika and smoked salt

Ground Beef

  • Ground beef
  • Garlic, diced (onion, chive, shallots. all of these would be good in addition or instead
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • A squeeze of lemon or lime juice
  • Your favorite spice blend
  • Herbs


  1. Mix the ground beef with all of the other ingredients.
  2. Form into balls of equal size. For cooking over a fire, I find that small to medium-sized meatballs work best.
  3. Cook in a pan in order to retain all of the juices! Save the drippings and use them in whatever the meatballs will end up in.
  4. Drizzle on some oil and then the vinegar or lemon juice.
  5. So easy!

Salmon in Foil with Dill & Lemon

This classic camping technique is based on something called cooking “en papillote.” In French cuisine, delicate foods are wrapped in paper and then cooked. When the packets are opened, the fragrant steam is almost as delightful as the food itself.

The salmon will cook quickly, so keep a close eye on it!


  • Salmon fillets
  • Butter or oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Scallions, sliced
  • Dill, minced
  • Lemon, cut into half moons


  1. Butter or oil a piece of foil for each piece of fish.
  2. Season both sides of the fish with salt and pepper and place it skin side down on the foil.
  3. Crumble, grate or slice the cheese and distribute over the tomatoes.
  4. Drizzle on some oil and then the vinegar or lemon juice.
  5. So easy!

Campfire Stew with Roasted Corn

My first camping trip was my sophomore year of high school. My friend's youth group canoed the Winooski river from Montpelier to the mouth of Lake Champlain, and I got to go along for the ride. I don't remember anything we ate except for the “Campfire Stew,” which was a mix of Campbell's Alphabet Soup, ground beef, and some formerly frozen veggies. This is my variation.

This is a great recipe to make if you've used some frozen chicken stock to keep your cooler cold!

This recipe is a good one for reminding cooks to season in small increments all the way through cooking.


  • Olive oil or butter
  • Onion, diced
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Ground beef
  • Spices, as desired, including paprika, chile powder, or a blend of curry spices
  • Golden potatoes, diced
  • Chicken stock
  • Beer, wine, or cider, if desired
  • Cherry tomatoes, halved
  • Roasted corn, cut off the cob
  • Spinach, cleaned, and roughly chopped
  • Lemon or vinegar


  1. In a Dutch oven or medium-sized pot, heat the fat.
  2. When hot, add the onion, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until translucent.
  3. Add the ground beef to the pot, season with desired spices, and add more salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until browned.
  4. Add the potatoes, chicken stock, and wine, beer or cider, if desired. Season again!
  5. Simmer until the potatoes are nearly tender and add the cherry tomatoes and roasted corn. Simmer for another few minutes to allow the flavors to meld.
  6. Season to taste with more salt and pepper, spices if needed, and lemon or vinegar for acidity.

Grilled Drumsticks with Smoky Spice Rub & Blueberry Cider Sauce

On a hot day, drumsticks are a great thing to cook over the fire. They cook pretty quickly, taste good at room temperature, and are perfect for eaters of all ages.

Seasoning the chicken in advance, and using some interesting spices, can turn a pretty common dish into something a little bit more special. The fruit and hard-cider sauce seals the deal.


  • Chicken drumsticks, or other chicken pieces, if preferred
  • Salt
  • Spices, including smoked paprika, black pepper, and chipotle powder, mixed
  • Nice hard cider
  • Blueberries, and other berries, if desired (we used some sour cherries)


  1. Remove the chicken from its packages, and pat dry. Let sit for a few minutes to allow the skin to dry further.
  2. Amply season the chicken on all sides with salt.
  3. Roll the chicken pieces in your smoky spice blend.
  4. In a small pot, combine the berries and hard cider, and bring to a simmer. Move the pot around over the fire to keep the sauce at simmer.
  5. Place the drumsticks on the grill, and cook until golden brown on the first side.
  6. Turn the chicken, and cook until it is cooked through (165-Fahrenheit). When it's fully cooked, you'll notice that any juices that are running from the chicken are clear – not red – and that it feels firm when you press on it. If you're in doubt, cut it open to see if it's white and opaque.
  7. When the sauce has reduced to a thickness you like, add a couple tablespoons of butter, and taste for seasoning. Add salt and vinegar as needed.

Lentils & Pasta

When Seven Days reporter Sabine Poux visited me at Grand Isle State Park, this is what we made! It takes two pots, but it’s a rich and amazing dinner. If you want to make it vegan, just make sure you don’t buy egg noodles, and leave out the butter.

I make mushroom powder at home by grinding up a dried mushroom blend in a food processor, and use it to season soups, stews, sauces, and any dish that needs a little bit more savory-ness. It’s a great cooking trick!


  • Lentils de puy (I like them because they hold their shape after you cook them)
  • Garlic, minced
  • Tomatoes, chopped
  • Mushroom powder
  • Salt & pepper
  • Butter
  • Spices (I use smoked paprika because it's my favorite)
  • Herbs
  • 1 box or bag of pasta, whatever shape you like
  • Grated cheese


  1. Put a medium-sized pot of water over the hottest part of the fire, and bring to a boil. This will be for the pasta. It can take a while for water to boil over a fire, so start this nice and early. Salt the water until it tastes nearly as salty as the ocean.
  2. In another pot, combine the lentils, tomatoes, garlic, mushroom powder, salt, pepper, and water. The typical ratio for lentils is 1 cup lentils to 2 cups water, but I tend to use a little extra water when I’m cooking over a fire. Add any herbs and spices you’d like.
  3. Simmer the lentils for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until nice and tender. Adjust seasoning as needed.
  4. When the lentils are about halfway done cooking, cook the pasta in the boiling water, according to the package directions. Drain when done, and combine lentils and pasta in any proportion that you like. Top with grated cheese, if you wanna!

Pork meatballs

A nice, simple meat dish that can be served over rice and beans, mashed sweet potatoes, grits, or whatever other starch you happen to have. I am pretty picky about where I get ground meat, but Vermont has many amazing farms, and they sell some delicious pork made from heritage breed pigs.


  • 1 pound ground pork for every 3 - 4 people, depending on their appetites
  • Shallot, red onion or scallion, minced
  • Cilantro, minced
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Lime juice and zest
  • Cumin


  1. Mix all ingredients
  2. If you wish you can cook a small bit of meat, taste it for seasoning and adjust the seasonings before you cook the whole batch.
  3. Form the meat into meatballs of whatever size you'd prefer.
  4. Cook in a pan with a little oil or on a piece of foil. with the edges turned up over fairly high heat.
  5. When the first side browns turn the meatballs
  6. They're done when the meat is no longer pink.

Tomato, Garlic & Chile Sauce for Meat or Beans

Put this sauce together at the beginning of your prep time and throw it on the fire to simmer as soon as you can, making sure it’s in a spot that’s not too hot. The garlic will become soft and mellow, and by the time your other food is done, you’ll have a rich, flavorful sauce. It would be amazing on tacos, or as a topping for scrambled eggs, too. This recipe would be vegan if you swapped olive or avocado oil in for the butter.


  • Fresh tomatoes or cherry tomatoes, chopped or halved, if you're using small ones
  • Lots of garlic (I used 10 cloves to make 2 cups of sauce. The way we cook it will mellow it out).
  • A hunk of butter
  • Smoked salt
  • Black pepper
  • Coriander
  • Chipotle chile powder
  • Other Mexican spices, such as cumin
  • Lime juice if desired.


  1. In a small pot, combine all ingredients and a little bit of water and set over the fire in a place that's not too hot.
  2. Let simmer, stirring regularly until the tomatoes and garlic have broken down completely. Add more water as needed, but ultimately you want the sauce to be thick
  3. Taste the sauce and season to taste with salt, lime juice, chile powder and all the other spices.

Beer-Braised Beef with Red, White & Blue Potatoes

There was a song I learned in middle school chorus that went: “I'd like to teach the world to sing. ” (In the 80s, a popular soda company co-opted the song for a commercial). If I could teach the world one thing, it would be how to braise.

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Braising is a method of cooking food slowly, in liquid, until it is falling-apart tender. It's a great way to prepare cheaper cuts of meat, which are not only economical, but are also great to buy from farmers. Why? Because it's easy for farmers to sell the steaks and the burger, but it's harder for them to find people who know how to use the other cuts. If you're one of those people, they will appreciate you a great deal!

I made a nice, quiet fire, and let the beef cook for three hours, while I read a book.


  • Beef shanks
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Olive, sunflower or grapeseed oil
  • Beer, red wine, stock or a combination. I used stout and some water because that's what I had.
  • Garlic cloves, chopped
  • Mushrooms if you'd like
  • Red, white & blue baby potatoes
  • A touch of white wine vinegar to correct the seasoning.


  1. Remove the beef from the package and pat dry with paper towels.
  2. Amply season the beef on both sides with salt & pepper.
  3. In a Dutch oven or other heavy pan with a cover, heat the oil in a hotter part of the fire.
  4. When the oil is hot, add the shanks. Sear until deep brown on the first side.
  5. Turn the shanks, and sear on the second side.
  6. Add your braising liquid and stir up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan (the fancy term for that is deglazing!). Make sure that there's enough liquid so the liquid won't boil off and burn. More is better than too little! Add the garlic, too. Place the pan over a part of the fire where it will simmer, but not boil. Cover.
  7. After 30 minutes, check to make sure that the temperature in the pan is appropriate.
  8. Cook for around two and a half hours to three hours, checking every 20 to 30 minutes, and adding liquid as necessary. When you notice that the meat is getting tender and starting to fall off the bone, add the mushrooms and potatoes, and a little more salt and pepper.
  9. Cover again and cook until the potatoes are tender. If the meat isn't done, it's ok to remove the potatoes and keep cooking the meat, or, if you don't mind that they'll be a little soft, leave 'em in.
  10. When the meat is done, if you wish, you can take the meat out, put the pan over slightly higher heat, and reduce the sauce to the consistency of a glaze.
  11. Either way, finish season the sauce with salt, and vinegar if it needs more acidity.

Cornmeal-Crusted Fish

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  • Perch, cleaned & gutted
  • Eggs
  • Flour
  • Cornmeal
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Other spices and dried herbs as desired


  1. Using paper towels, pat the fish dry. Let the fish sit and air out as you prepare the remaining ingredients.
  2. Crack eggs into a container that is big enough for dipping the perch. Whisk with a fork until mostly uniform
  3. In another container of similar size, combine approximately equal parts cornmeal and flour. Season with salt and pepper, and other appropriate seasonings you have on hand (see note)
  4. Lay out a piece of foil to hold the dredged fish.
  5. Holding the perch by the tail (or tail end, if the tail has been removed) dip in the egg until fully coated, and then dip in the cornmeal mixture. Place the dipped perch on the foil.
  6. When all of the fish has been coated, cook it on the grate (if you are willing to keep a close eye on it and turn it regularly), on the piece of foil (which gives a little buffer between the fish and the flames), or in a pan (for maximum control).
  7. Perch is done when it is opaque and tender, and the flesh easily flakes away from the bones.

Walleye with Mustard & Herbs

Walleye is a delicious, sought-after fish. There are many excellent ways to prepare it. I wanted something that was super quick and easy, and this is what I came up with.

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  • Walleye, cleaned & gutted
  • Dijon Mustard
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Parsley, minced
  • Chives or scallions, minced
  • Butter


  1. Using paper towels, pat the fish dry.
  2. Place each fish on a piece of foil that is big enough to completely enfold it, and to create a nice seal at the top.
  3. Smear the fish with a little Dijon mustard, and sprinkle with salt & pepper.
  4. Sprinkle on the parsley and scallion.
  5. Cut pieces of butter and place them on top of the fish.
  6. Fold up the foil packet and seal.
  7. Cook until the fish is opaque, tender and flakes off the bone.

Brown Trout Stuffed with Lemon & Thyme

The fattiest of the three fish that we used, trout has a rich flavor that pairs well with citrus, plants in the onion family, and various herbs. I decided to stuff it and roast it.

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  • Trout, cleaned and gutted with the blood line removed, skin on.
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Lemon, sliced into half moons
  • Shallot, minced
  • Thyme sprigs
  • Olive Oil


  1. Using paper towels, pat the fish dry.
  2. Place on an oiled piece of aluminum foil.
  3. Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper, and then open the center and season the interior too.
  4. With the fish lying on one side, open the flap and place lemons, a sprinkling of shallot and the thyme sprigs inside. Top with a drizzle of olive oil.
  5. Roast the fish on foil or in a pan, turning halfway through cooking. It is done when it is tender, and the flesh easily comes away from the bone.


Sour Cream Panna Cotta with Violets & Rose Petals

You could make this on-site, but you could also make it at home, and unmold it when you're camping. If you're going to make it at your campsite, you'll need to make sure you have a nice cold cooler with lots of space, in order to chill it. Panna cotta, which comes from Italy, is basically a fancy jello that is made with cream. I put flowers in the mold because it's pretty, but you totally don't have to. You could also chill the panna cotta in little mason jars, don't worry about unmolding it, and sprinkle the flowers on top! You'll want to give the dessert four to six hours to chill, but you'll be able to tell how set it is by pressing on it with your finger. This recipe is adapted from David Lebovitz.

Ingredients for Steak Pizzaiola

The ingredients for this recipe are for two steaks, if making more simply multiply the recipe accordingly, there was enough sauce for the steak and to garnish a side of pasta.

  1. 1 6-8 oz Top Sirloin steak per person
  2. 4-6 cloves of garlic minced
  3. 1 medium onion diced
  4. 2 bell peppers thinly sliced
  5. 8-10 button mushrooms thinly sliced
  6. 1 tsp salt & pepper (approximate)
  7. 15 oz can crushed tomatoes
  8. 1 cup water
  9. 2 tsp dried oregano
  10. 1-2 tsp pepper flakes (optional)
  11. 5 -6 Tbs tomato paste
  12. 1-2 Tbs Olive oil
  13. ½-1 cup grated mozzerella cheese

Featured Recipes

We have you covered this Valentine’s Day. Heart shaped Delmonico steak deliciously topped with shrimp & butter sauce.

Ingredients - Serves 2

Certified Angus Beef ® Delmonico steak 2 inches thick cut into heart shape

Fine Sea Salt - 5 tsp, divided

Black Pepper - 2.5 tsp, divided

Olive Oil Blend (10% EVOO) - 1 tsp

4 - U/15 Wild Caught Shrimp

Salted Butter - 6 tbsp, divided

Fresh Lemon - 1 juiced, zested


Pat shrimp dry with a paper towel. In a mixing bowl, toss shrimp with olive oil blend, 1-teaspoon salt and 1/2-teaspoon pepper.

Season strip steaks with remaining salt and pepper. Grill over high heat 4-5 minutes per side or until they reach an internal temperature of 125°F for medium rare. Allow to rest, while preparing shrimp.

Grill shrimp over high heat, 2 minutes on one side. While the shrimp grill, add 4-tablespoons butter and garlic to a pan, over medium heat. Flip shrimp and grill 2 more minutes. Transfer to pan and stir in parsley and lemon zest searing 2 more minutes.

Remove from heat, stir in remaining 2-tablespoons butter and lemon juice until melted. Serve steak topped with shrimp and drizzled with butter sauce.

Ingredients - Serves 12

  • 1 (5-7 pound) Certified Angus Beef ® peeled tenderloin
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano leaves
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon crushed dried rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard


  1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
  2. Combine herbs, salt, pepper and dry mustard in a small bowl. Place tenderloin on rack in shallow roasting pan rub seasonings evenly onto beef.
  3. Roast for 15 minutes reduce heat to 325°F and roast approximately 1 hour for medium doneness (135-140°F on thermometer).
  4. Remove from oven, tent loosely with foil and rest 15 minutes before carving.


  • 1 Certified Angus Beef ® bone-in rib roast
  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cracked pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 450ºF. Season roast evenly with salt and pepper. Place roast bone-side down in pan.
  2. Place beef in oven and roast 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 325ºF and continue roasting about 2 3/4 hours for medium (when thermometer registers 135 -140ºF).
  3. Transfer roast to cutting board loosely tent with foil and let rest 15 minutes. Slice roast across the grain.


  • 1 Certified Angus Beef ® boneless ribeye roast
  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons freshly ground pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 450ºF. Season boneless rib roast on all sides with salt and pepper.
  2. Place on a roasting rack, fat side up roast for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 325ºF and continue roasting approximately 2 1/4 hours for medium (when thermometer registers 130-135°F before resting) or until desired doneness.
  3. Transfer roast to cutting board loosely tent with foil and let stand 15 minutes. Slice roast across the grain.

Ingredients - Serves 6

  • 1 Certified Angus Beef ® New York strip roast
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 450ºF. Place New York strip roast, fat side up, in roasting pan fitted with rack. Rub roast with olive oil and season all sides with salt and pepper.
  2. Place in oven for about 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 325ºF and continue cooking approximately 1 1/4 hours for medium doneness (135-140°F on thermometer).
  3. Loosely tent roast with foil and let stand 10 minutes. Slice roast across the grain.

T-Bone in Bourbon Marinade

Ingredients - Serves 4

  • 4 (14 - 16-ounce) Certified Angus Beef ® T-bone steaks
  • 1 cup bourbon
  • 1 orange, zested and juiced
  • 1/4 teaspoon bitters
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons whole black peppercorns
  • 3 teaspoons kosher salt, divided


  1. Combine bourbon, orange zest and juice, bitters, Worcestershire, brown sugar, water, peppercorns and 2 teaspoons salt in a saucepan bring to a simmer stirring occasionally. Reduce marinade by half over medium-low heat.
  2. Cool marinade completely (below 40°F). Pour into a 1-gallon zipper-locking plastic bag along with t-bone steaks. Marinate 2 - 4 hours, flipping once.
  3. Preheat grill to medium high. Grill steaks about 5 minutes per side for medium rare (125-130°F internal temperature) or until desired doneness is reached. Allow steaks to rest 5 minutes, sprinkle with additional salt and serve.

Ingredients - Serves 4

  • 1 (40-ounce) Certified Angus Beef ® porterhouse
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic (2-3 cloves)
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • 2 large sprigs rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon high-quality sea salt (like Maldon)


  1. Zest and juice lemon, reserving zest for later. Combine the lemon juice, garlic, kosher salt and pepper. Coat porterhouse steak evenly, place in a large zipper-locking plastic bag with rosemary, pressing out all air or wrap tightly in plastic wrap refrigerate overnight.
  2. Preheat grill to warm (250°F).
  3. Wrap porterhouse in foil, place in grill away from direct heat and cook slowly for 60-90 minutes, flipping once (internal temperature target should be 100F). Remove steak from grill and increase grill heat to high (450°F-500°F). Allow steak to rest 15 minutes in foil while grill is heating to higher temperature.
  4. Remove steak from foil, pat dry, brush with olive oil and sear 2-3 minutes per side for medium rare (125°F-130°F). Transfer to a clean cutting board. Combine reserved lemon zest and sea salt.
  5. Carve steak by running knife along the bone to remove both the strip and tenderloin. Slice each steak in 1/4 to 1/2-inch thick slices and serve on platter, garnished with lemon sea salt.


  • 1/2 bunch thyme, leaves only
  • 1/2 bunch fresh sage, leaves only
  • 2 cloves garlic, gently smashed and paper removed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Pork crown roast (about 12 to 14 ribs)


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. In a small mixing bowl combine thyme, sage, garlic, and salt and pepper, to taste, and mash to break up herbs and garlic. Add oil, about 1 cup, and combine.
  3. Rub the pork all over with the herb mixture.
  4. Place in a roasting pan. Set aside to bring the pork to room temperature prior to cooking.
  5. Optional - Fill the cavity with stuffing
  6. Cover the stuffing (optional)and the tips of the rib bones with foil then place the whole roast in the oven and bake for 2 hours and 20 minutes, thermometer inserted near the bone should register 150 degrees F when done. About 30 to 45 minutes prior to doneness, remove the foil to brown the stuffing and create a crust. Remove from the oven, loosely cover with foil and allow to rest for 30 minutes before cutting.

Bird S ize - Match the size of your Thanksgiving turkey to the size of your crowd. Smaller birds fit in the refrigerator better and are easier to handle. If you’re hosting a big crowd and have two ovens, consider roasting two smaller birds instead of a large one (this also gives you a good excuse to try two kinds of stuffing). Some cooks look forward to turkey leftovers as weekend fare others prefer to serve just enough to feed the guests at the feast.

Turkey Math - For birds under 16 pounds, figure at least 1 pound of turkey per person. For birds 16 pounds and heavier, figure a bit less since there’s more meat in proportion to bone. If you want substantial seconds and leftovers, allow another 1/2 pound per person.

Prepare - For birds under 16 pounds, figure at least 1 pound of turkey per person. For About an hour before roasting, take the turkey out of the fridge. Remove any packaging and the bag of giblets (check in the body cavity and in the neck cavity). Set the turkey breast-side up on the roasting rack and let it sit. This takes the chill off the meat, which helps the meat cook faster and more evenly, and it dries out the skin, which promotes browning and crisping. Optional Extras - Rub minced herbs or ground spices into (or beneath) the skin for more flavor, place a few halved lemons or garlic cloves inside the cavity of the turkey.

Roast - For birds under 16 pounds, figure at least 1 pound of turkey per person. For Set the oven temperature to 400 degrees. The turkey will spend the first 20 minutes at 400 degrees uncovered. After the first 20 minutes, tent the turkey with foil, drop the temperature to 350 degrees and cook for 20 minutes per pound. Start checking the temperature of your turkey about half-way through the scheduled cooking time to gauge how fast it’s cooking. Check the Temperature - To make sure that turkey is fully cooked through and through, check its temperature in three places: the breast, the
outer thigh, and the inside thigh. The turkey will continue to cook once it’s removed from the oven and given time to rest. We recommend you pull the turkey once it’s reached 160 degrees so that it rises to a safe 165. Rest your bird for at least 20 minutes.

Rest - Lift the whole turkey (still on the rack) and transfer it to a cutting board. Tent the turkey with aluminum foil and let it rest for 20 minutes or so. This gives time for the meat to firm up and the juices to be re-absorbed into the muscle tissue, making the turkey easier to slice and taste juicier.

What to serve with rainbow trout:

  • Oven-roasted vegetables, such as asparagus, sliced bell peppers, red onions.
  • Grilled vegetables, such as squash, zucchini, red onions, asparagus, or bell peppers.
  • Potatoes. Serve mashed potatoes or oven-baked potatoes roasted with herbs and garlic in olive oil.
  • Fresh green salad. Make a simple green salad by tossing together spinach, or arugula, or mixed salad greens with a small amount of olive oil and a splash of balsamic vinegar. Top the salad with shredded Parmesan cheese and a handful of nuts, such as cashew nuts, pine nuts, or toasted slivered almonds.
  • Rice. Jasmine rice is an excellent side dish choice for trout fish. For more flavor, serve wild rice or flavored rice.