From the category archives:

Main Dishes

It’s winter and the kid has been saying he wants something. Soup. It’s cold but “I don’t know what I want.”

He saw a picture of a green soup and told me this morning “I want that.” Not sure what that was but I made him a very vegetable based cheese soup. Pretty simple to do and really this is not a recipe but a suggestion. You could switch out the vegetables and it would be just fine.

I would however use a good cheddar. I like Cabot’s Extra Sharp and do not skip coating the cheese with the corn starch.

Serve with a good toasted buttered bread and enjoy.


4 tablespoons of butter
1 Large crown of broccoli chopped
1 large carrot diced
1 rib of celery diced
3 leaks chopped and cleaned
3 cloves garlic – smashed
4.5 oz good cheddar grated – about 2 cup
6 cups chicken stock
¼ cup flour
5 teaspoons cornstarch
3 Slices od good bread.
Olive oil
Salt and pepper



Butter and toast the bread in a 450 oven until browning and turn off oven.
Once cooled chop up the bread and set aside
Place about ½ cup of the broccoli aside as a garnish – just the very small tops of the crowns.

Melt the butter in a heavy soup pot
add all the vegetables and 1 teaspoon both salt and pepper and cook on medium for about 15 minutes
Stir frequently

Add the flour and stir in for about 2 minutes
Add the stock and bring to a boil for 20 minutes

Turn of heat and let it come to a rest and cool

Either use an immersion blender or a blender (in small batches) and blend the soup until smooth

Bring the soup back up to a simmer
Toss the grated cheese with the cornstarch
Gradually whisk the cheese into the simmering soup.

Serve soup with the toasted bread crumbs, broccoli crowns and a splash of olive oil on top.





The reason for meatballs in red sauce is not to top spaghetti. The real reason is the meatball sub. Growing up, I didn’t have many of these and I am not sure why. It was more likely that we would have meatloaf sandwiches. Mom made great meatballs but I guess my brother made sure that there was none left.

So this is a recipe as a work in progress. Over time, my mom’s recipe became closer to my Italian sausage recipe. And I adopted my sister-in-laws idea of finishing them in the sauce at a low temp for a few hours. I suppose that it will change further as my tastes change. But it has been stable for two years. That means I only messed with it for 30 years.

This will make a lot, but it will make two meals. Sunday spaghetti night and subs on Monday.

And as always, I am cooking for 4, but one is a fourteen-year-old athlete so he eats like two. It’s his favorite sub. I couldn’t let him think that Subway was good.


1 LB Ground beef – 85/15 fat content
1 LB Ground pork
2 Eggs
½ Cup Milk
½ Cup breadcrumbs
¾ Cup grated parmesan cheese
1 Teaspoon red chili flakes
1 Teaspoon smoked paprika
1 Teaspoon oregano
1 Teaspoon thyme
1 Teaspoon black pepper
1 Teaspoon salt
½ Cup chopped fresh parsley
2 Batches of marinara plus 1 cup of red wine


In a large mixing bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, milk and spices and salt and mix. Let it rest for 15 minutes.
Whisk in the eggs.

Whisk in the cheese and parsley.
Add the pork and beef.

Mix this by hand until combined. Both hands. In the bowl.

Cover a baking pan with either nonstick tinfoil or parchment paper.
(Or be prepared to scrub a pan).
Preheat oven to 350.

Roll the mixture into roughly 2-inch balls.
Place about ½ inch apart on the pan.
Start the tomato sauce.

Bake the meatballs for 30 minutes.

Place the baked meatballs in the sauce and lower the heat on the sauce to just below a simmer.
Cook for at least two hours – less would be OK but the more time the more tender the meatballs. I usually make this over lunch and let them cook until dinner.

At this point you could just eat them out of the pot. But the way we do it is like I said, Sunday dinner follow by meatball subs.



Whole Smoked Rib Roast – Prime Rib Recipe.

Thumbnail image for Whole Smoked Rib Roast – Prime Rib Recipe. June 15, 2013

Mmmmmm…. meat. Smoked meat at that. I told myself that I would keep all the smoking and curing off the blog but this was just too good. The whole rib roast gets 4 hours in the smoker and then finished to your desired doneness on the grill. This is a pretty easy recipe. And the […]

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Thumbnail image for Pan Seared Scallops with Sage and Capers May 26, 2013

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Orecchiette with Brussels Sprouts and Bacon

Thumbnail image for Orecchiette with Brussels Sprouts and Bacon May 15, 2013

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Thumbnail image for Artichoke Pasta with Shitake and Crimini Mushrooms March 25, 2013

Artichoke pasta with shitake and crimini mushrooms was less of a choice than a demand. Jan showed me picture of a pasta dish and said “I want that.”  I am not really sure what she showed me, but it looked like mushrooms and the evidence was the proof  as both mushrooms were on sale for […]

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Thumbnail image for Grilled Rueben with a Hot and Crispy Potato Salad March 21, 2013

Okay, it’s the third day after Saint Patrick’s day and what are you going to do with the leftovers from the boiled dinner? Especially the vegetables. How about a grilled rueben with a hot and crispy potato salad? The star here is the potato salad. And this is good stuff. Kid approved stuff. Potato crack. […]

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Cajun Rice and Beans

Thumbnail image for Cajun Rice and Beans March 16, 2013

I wasn’t going to post such a simple thing as Cajun rice and beans. But I can imagine chef King reach out from Oregon and smack me on the head with the admonition, “Don’t teach the recipes; teach them how to cook.” How to make this adds up to much more than dinner. I never […]

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Spaghetti Carbonara

Thumbnail image for Spaghetti Carbonara March 8, 2013

Spaghetti carbonara is a fairly easy dish and one that I needed. I am in the middle of a kitchen renovation and, well we have no kitchen. The counter guys broke the granite yesterday so now we are kitchen impaired for a few days. Everything had gone smoothly. I was feeling good that we would […]

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Fried Chicken & Waffles with a Maple Tahini Sauce

Thumbnail image for Fried Chicken & Waffles with a Maple Tahini Sauce January 10, 2013

Ok. I totally stole this from everyone-all-over-the-place-everywhere. The sauce comes from Tarrant’s in downtown Richmond. As does coupling the dish with green beans. I think I have more lemon in the sauce but whatever. Tarrant’s is a great place to eat and so is their version. The chicken seasoning is from something I ate in […]

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