Monday, February 20, 2017

Cherry filled cupcakes

In honor of George Washington and because of his penchant for cherries, I'm suggesting an easy and pretty dessert for today, President's Day.

You may make your cupcakes from scratch or use a chocolate cake mix....whichever you prefer.

It's the cherry compote filling and the icing that make these cupcakes special.  You can make filling these cupcakes really easy to fill by investing in an apple corer.  As you punch down 3/4 of the way into the cupcake, you'll pull out a small plug of baked cupcake.  Don't go all the way to the bottom because you need a base to contain the filling.

What you do with these chocolate plugs is up to you...I've never had a problem making good use of them.

Cherry Compote

2 cups pitted Bing Cherries
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 cup  Joe and Son's Black Cherry Balsamic Vinegar
1/4 teaspoon Almond extract

In a small saucepan, stir together the cherries, sugar and balsamic vinegar.  Cook over low heat for about 10 minutes and begin gently mashing the cherries.  Continue to cook until the balsamic has reduced and become thick and the cherries are clumpy in appearance. Add the almond extract, stir and set aside.

When the cupcakes are done and cooled.  Use the apple corer to remove a center plug and fill the space with the cherry compote.

Ice the cupcakes with your favorite vanilla or chocolate icing and drizzle with additional cherry compote.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Chicken with Olives, Capers and Raisins

I must give credit for this recipe to a friend of mine who has been making changes to her recipes in order to incorporate Joe and Son's Olive Oils and Vinegars into her daily cooking.  She was kind enough to share it with me.  And as soon as I tasted it, I knew I had to share it with you.

This is an absolutely delicious meal that requires almost no cooking. Serve it with a green salad and some wonderful artisan bread to sop up the pan juices.  Then sit back and just wait for the compliments you'll get....and trust me, you'll get plenty.

Chicken With Olives, Raisins And Capers  


3 pounds chicken breasts and thighs, on the bone
1/2 cup Joe and Son’s Milanese Gremolata Olive Oil
1/4 cup chopped garlic
2 tablespoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Hot red pepper flakes according to your heat taste…about  1/2 teaspoon
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup Joe and Son’s 18 yr. Traditional Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 cup pitted green olives, cut in half
3/4 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup capers, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup chopped parsley, for garnish 


In large bowl, combine the chicken, half the olive oil, garlic, oregano, salt, pepper and hot red pepper flakes. Cover and marinate overnight.  

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Arrange chicken in single layer in a large baking pan. Bake 30 minutes, or until lightly browned.

Meanwhile, in a medium sauce pan, combine the remaining olive oil, broth, vinegar, olives, raisins and capers and bring mixture to a boil. Pour over the chicken and bake 30 minutes longer, basting several times with the liquid.  

Garnish with parsley and serve
Makes six servings.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

No-Fry, Mix and Match Chicken Wings

The holidays are over and it's New Year's resolution time. If this year's list includes eating healthy, we've got the perfect recipe to keep you sticking to that resolution. You may think of chicken wings as bar food, but these saucy babies are great for, say, watching the Super Bowl.

 We ditched the standard deep-frying procedure in favor of a crispy broiling method that maintains the plump, juicy goodness of the wings while curtailing the messy effects of oil in the kitchen and on the waistline.

These crowd-pleasers are a breeze to prepare and we offer three bold flavor variations for lots of wing fun.

No Fry Wings

 4 pounds of chicken wings (split at the joints, tips removed)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar of your choice*
1/4 cup oil of your choice*
chopped scallions for garnish (optional)

Season wings with salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder on both sides. Preheat your oven to broil. Spread the wings on two foil- lined baking sheets. Broil for about 10 minutes and flip the wings. Broil for about another 10 minutes and toss with your choice of  *oil and vinegar combination and return to the oven for about 5 minutes till the balsamic becomes like a glaze.

*Choose a Flavor:

Pineapple White Balsamic  +  Baklouti Green Chili Olive Oil
 Honey Ginger White Balsamic  +  Dark Toasted Sesame Oil
 Raspberry Balsamic  +  Cayenne Chili Olive Oil