Tag Archives: cooking

Corn Relish

The corn at my farmers market this summer has been outstanding and this is another great way to use this beautiful vegetable.




In a saucepan, bring the vinegar and sugar to a boil, stirring often to dissolve the sugar.  Simmer for 10 minutes, until mixture is reduced to 3/4 cup.  Reserve liquid in a bowl.  Heat the olive oil in the saucepan over medium heat.  Add the onion, jalapeño, paprika, turmeric and salt.  Cook, stirring, for about 2 minutes, until the jalapeño softens.   Add the corn and cook 3 minutes longer.  Add the vinegar mixture and the basil to the corn and simmer for 5 minutes.  Refrigerate for 20 minutes.  Remove from fridge, add the garlic oil and mix well.


Chocolate Chip, Almond and Olive Oil Cookies

This cookie recipe replaces butter with olive oil and they taste amazing!  Not that i have anything against butter – I just like to mix things up and with this recipe, you won’t be missing anything.



  • 1 C           all-purpose Flour
  • 1/2 tsp   Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp   Salt
  • 1/4 C      Lucini Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2/3 C     Brown Sugar (high quality makes a big difference)
  • 1              Egg
  • 1/2 tsp  Vanilla
  • 1/2 C     Chocolate chips
  • 1/2 C     Chopped toasted almonds


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with foil, or silicone liners.  

In medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.

In a large bowl, beat the olive oil and sugar with an electric mixer till creamy, about 3 minutes.  Beat in egg and vanilla until well blended, about 1 minute.

Stir in the flour mixture until just combined.  Stir in the chocolate chips and almonds until well distributed.  Drop by rounded tablespoons onto prepared cookies sheets, about 2 inches apart (makes 24 cookies).  Bake 12 to 15 minutes, until golden around the edges.

Remove from the oven and transfer the cookies onto wire racks to cool.

Chicken Chasseur – Hunter’s Chicken

This recipe is adapted from the first recipe I attempted from Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking.  One of my “chores” at age 15 was cooking dinner for my family, so I went through all of the chicken recipes in the book.  This was one of my favorites and I still make it every once in awhile.  In the winter I like to use a variety of herbs (usually bay leaves,  sage, rosemary and thyme) – I find the aromas and flavor very comforting.



  • 2 TB Lucini Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 8        Chicken Thighs(remove fat and skin, about 2 pounds)
  • 1        Onion (medium, peeled and chopped, about 1 cup)
  • 1 TB  Flour
  • 1 C     dry White Wine
  • 1/2 jar Lucini Organic Plum Tomatoes
  • 5        Garlic cloves (peeled, finely chopped, about 1 tablespoon)
  • 20      Mushrooms (about 12 ounces)
  • 1 TB  Basil (fresh, chopped fine)
  • 1 tsp  Salt
  • 1/2 tsp  Black Pepper (freshly ground)


Heat the olive oil until it is hot in a large nonstick skillet.  Add the chicken thighs in one layer, and cook for 5 minutes on each side over medium-high heat.  Transfer the thighs to a large, sturdy saucepan, arranging them side by side in a single layer in the pan.  Add the onion to the drippings in the skillet and sauté for 30 seconds.  Add the flour, mix it in well, and cook for 30 seconds more.  Then mix in the wine and tomatoes.  Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat and the transfer it into the saucepan containing the chicken.
Stir in the garlic, mushrooms, basil, salt, pepper and soy sauce.  Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally to prevent the chicken from scorching, then cover the pan, reduce the heat to low, and cook for 25 minutes.  Serve two thighs per person with some of the vegetables and sauce.

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Caponata – Eggplant recipe

This is a simple recipe that takes great advantage of fresh eggplant.  It has complex flavor and will be sure to wow any party or get together!




Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan (medium heat).  Saute the onions, pine nuts, raisins and hot pepper for 4 to 5 minutes until the onions have softened, but have not turned dark gold.  Add the eggplant and cinnamon and cook for 5 minutes.  Add the tomato sauce and bring to a boil, then turn heat down to low and simmer until the tomatoes are broken down, about 6-8 minutes.  Remove from the heat and add the chili infused oil and cherry balsamic.  Taste the caponata and adjust flavor with salt, pepper, cherry vinegar and chili infused oil.  Allow to cool to room temperature.

  • 1/2 cup virgin olive oil
  • 1 large Spanish onion, chopped in 1/2-inch dice
  • 3 tablespoons pine nuts
  • 3 tablespoons currants
  • 1 tablespoon hot chili flakes, plus extra for garnish
  • 2 medium eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (to yield 4 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves or 1/2 teaspoon
  • 1/4 cup basic tomato sauce, recipe follows
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

Corn and Smoked Fish Chowder

I love corn chowder, but the addition of smoked fish and tasty Lucini infused oils really makes this chowder unique.  This recipe is another great way to use the wonderful corn appearing at local markets right now.  My favorite purveyor of smoked fish is Russ & Daughters – appetizing on the Lower East Side of Manhattan since 1914 – but any great local smoked fish will work well here.  I like to use a fresh green herb as a garnish and find dill balances up will with smoked fish.


I used dill as a garnish

I used dill as a garnish





Remove the cream and allow to reach room temperature.  Add the cornstarch to the cream and stir well.  Bring the stock to a boil in a saucepan and then add the cream and allow to simmer slowly until it reduces by two-thirds – 12-20 minutes.  Add the basil and chili oils and mix until well distributed.

Heat 2 TB of the olive oil over medium heat.  Add the onions and cook for 2-3 minutes – the onions should not brown.  Add the corn and potatoes and stir well as you cook the vegetables for 3 more minutes.  Strain the cream into your vegetable mixture.  Simmer until the potatoes are tender – 2-3 minutes.  Mix in the chopped smoked fish, season to taste with salt and pepper, add a chopped herb garnish, and serve.

Squash Blossoms stuffed with Ricotta

I have seen beautiful zucchini flowers at my local farmers market recently, so I am sharing this tasty preparation.  Just be sure to be careful with the flowers as you add the filing.

Beautiful Zucchini Blossoms

Beautiful Zucchini Blossoms


  • 12-20       Zucchini Blossoms (medium to large, stems and pistils removed)
  • 2 TB           Lucini Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp Lemon Juice
  • 1/2 tsp     Sea Salt
  • 1/3 C        Pine Nuts
  • 1/2 LB      Escarole (remove core, chop fine)
  • 1/4 tsp     Black Pepper (fresh ground)
  • 2 C             Ricotta Cheese (high quality makes a huge difference)
  • 1/3 C        Raisins (golden are best for color contrast)
  • 2 TB          Lucini Basil Infused Olive Oil


Reconstitute the raisins in hot water –  allow to sit for 10 minutes.  Drain.

Heat the pine nuts in 1 TB olive oil a large pan over medium-low heat, stirring for even color, until lightly golden – about 5 to 7 minutes.  Transfer to a plate to cool.

Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over medium-high heat.  Add escarole, 1/4 tsp salt and pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until tender – about 5 to 7 minutes.  Transfer to a plate to cool.

Mix the pine nuts, escarole, ricotta and raisins well.  Transfer to pastry bag (or make your own with a plastic bag).   Snip a 1/3-inch opening and pipe filling into blossoms.  Using your fingers, very carefully press petals around filling.

Bring a few inches of water to boil in pot so that bottom of steamer insert sits above water.  Arrange blossoms, about  1/2 inch apart, in insert (steam in batches, if necessary – do not crowd).  Steam, covered, over gently simmering water until filling is just set, 3 to 4 minutes.

Best served at room temperature.

Fennel and Cabbage Slaw / Salad

This recipe is very easy (just 3 quick steps) and the refreshing fennel makes such a great partner to the cabbage.  A nice variation on the usual coleslaw.


  • 1           Fennel bulb (medium, chopped or shredded with mandolin)
  • 1 C       Cabbage (chopped or shredded with mandolin)
  • 1/4 C  sweet Onion (chopped, soaked for 15 minutes in ice water)
  • 1/4 C   Black Olives (chopped, preferably high quality, not canned)
  • 1 tsp    Orange Zest (minced fine)
  • 1/4 C  Orange Juice (preferably fresh)
  • 1 TB     Lucini Gran Riserva Balsamic Vinegar
  • 2 TB     Lucini Garlic-Infused Extra Virgin Olive Oil


Soak the onion in ice water to mellow flavor.  Mix the zest, orange juice, vinegar and olive oil in a bowl in emulsified.  Combine all of the vegetables in a serving bowl and top with the emulsification.  Refrigerate for one hour.