"What's for Dinner?!" I'm always thinking about it, thought I'd share.

"What's for Dinner?!" I'm always thinking about it, thought I'd share.

Monday, June 22, 2015

(Wheat-free) Cacao-Coconut Truffles

Being allergic to both wheat and dairy makes the dessert course something I usually avoid. Amazing how a great single barrel scotch, bourbon or after dinner drink makes one soon forget the sweets. Lucky for me though, our good friend Anat Shlagman shared this excellent recipe. She brought these delicious little balls, a great riff on a truffle, to a party a couple of weeks ago and I had to know the recipe. Anat, you're a master, thank you. Enjoy!

·         6-10 dates (soaked overnight and drained) – adjust as sweet as you want
·         ½ cup peanut butter or almond butter (can use coconut oil instead)
·         2-3 tbs cacao – adjust as bitter as you want
·         1 tsp of powdered herbs – Echinacea, elder berry, dandelion, turmeric, oatstraw, ginger, cayenne, alfalfa, nettle, raspberry
·         ½ -1 cup coconut flakes – adjust for the consistency

Preparation - In a big bowl:
·         Mash dates with a fork or in blender
·         Add peanut butter and keep mixing
·         Add cacao and herbs
·         Add coconut flakes until mixture reaches a stable consistency to create balls
·         Adjust any flavors by adding more cacao or, if needed to sweeten, can add some honey
·         Create balls and spread coconut flakes when all balls are done

Sunday, June 21, 2015

The menu: June 21st - June 26th

"Father's Day"- Dinner out: The Republic, Detroit

Grilled Steelhead Trout with Lemon and Capers
Charred Red Onion and Avocado, served on a bed of Red Romaine, creamy Garlic Dressing
Roasted Cauliflower with Garlic, Thyme and Olives

Vegetable Stir-fry with Szechuan Pork
Brown Rice with Scallions

Grilled NY Strip Steak, Shallot and Red Wine Butter
Chopped Salad with Italian Dressing
Grilled Leeks

Oven Roasted Chicken with a Honey-Plum Barbecue sauce
Baby Greens Salad with a Balsamic Vinaigrette

Mystery Night- Whatever catches our fancy!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Sour Cherry Vinaigrette

A terrific dressing for a summer salad.  I am pairing this with a pork tenderloin and it should be excellent.

1 1/2 Cup Tart Cherry Juice
1/3 Cup Red Wine Vinegar
Juice of one Lemon
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon minced shallot
1/2 Cup olive oil
1/2 Cup Salad Oil (I usually use Grape seed oil)
1 Tsp. Dijon Mustard
Salt & Pepper to taste

Please cherry Juice in a saucepan with the shallots and garlic, reduce over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until about ½ cup remains. Let cool.

Pour cherry juice, vinegar and lemon juice in to a large measuring cup (I like to use a 3 cup measuring cup) Add mustard and using a hand blender, blend for thirty seconds.
Add oil very slowly and blend until all is incorporated and you have an emulsified dressing.  Correct seasoning with salt and pepper.  Toss your salad lightly and Enjoy!

Will keep in the refrigerator for a week.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

The Menu: June 13th - June 19th

Grilled Mahi-Mahi with Shallots, Mango, and Lime
Smashed Avocado
Grilled Parmesan Asparagus

Oven Roasted Pork Tenderloin, sautéed Grapes served with a Madeira wine sauce
Roasted Brussel Sprouts with onions and garlic
Chopped Salad with Sour Cherry Vinaigrette

Turkey Burgers with Caramelized Red Onion and Avocado, served on a bed of Red Romaine, creamy Garlic Dressing

Vegetable Stir-fry with Szechuan Pork

Turkey Sloppy Joe
Garden Salad with Warm Shallot and Bacon Vinaigrette

"Smorgasbord Night"

Jim and Debbie Sue Dinner Party
Guacamole with chips
Jamón Serrano, Manchego cheese, and Spanish olives
Chicken Molé enchiladas
Chopped salad with a lime-cumin vinaigrette
Variety of chocolates with Orange slices and fresh berries

Basil Smash

Our good friend and bartender, Trina at Beau's gave us this recipe for a dinner party as a signature drink and we've never looked back.  Deliciously crisp and refreshing.  Really smashing up the basil and a lot of it is key.  Make sure you strain before serving it or your guests will have it in there teeth.  Just fantastic on a warm summer night on the patio with good friends.

Good Dry English Gin (Bombay Sapphire)
Lemon juice
Simple Syrup
Lots of crushed ice
Cucumber slice
Basil leaf

In a shaker aggressively muddle a good bit of basil, simple syrup, and lemon juice.  Strain mixture into a high ball glass.  Fill glass with crushed ice and add gin.  Garnish with a slice of cucumber and basil.  Enjoy!

The elixir (basil, lemon, and syrup) can be made in a big batch and keeps for a week in the refrigerator.  Note of caution, use cheese cloth (I've used nylons before) to strain and remove all basil leaves.  If left in the mixture it will turn brown.

Greek Style Brown Rice Salad

2 cups Brown rice, cooked and cooled
To taste add:
Green onion, sliced thinly
Grape tomatoes, quartered
Red, green, and yellow bell peppers, small dice
Garbanzo beans, drained
Mint, oregano, flat leaf parsley


1/4 cup Red wine vinegar garlic
1/3 cup Olive oil
2 tablespoons Red onion, minced
1 tablespoon Feta cheese, crumbled
1 teaspoon Honey
Pinch Herb mix from above
Squeeze Fresh lemon juice
Salt and black pepper, to taste

In a large mixing bowl combine all ingredients and toss with dressing.  Serve at room temperature and Enjoy!

Sunday, June 7, 2015

The menu: June 7th - June 12th

Dinner out - China Cafe, Novi

Thai-style Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps
Chopped Salad with a Lime-Chili Dressing

Mahi-mahi Lettuce "tacos" with Salsa Fresco and Jalapeño Crema

Vegetable Stir-fry with Brown Rice and green onions

Grilled Chicken with Lemon and Herbs
Baby Greens Salad with Shredded Beets and Carrots, Citrus Vinaigrette

Grilled Salmon with Lemon and Dill Butter
Roasted Onions, Zucchini and Summer Squash
Brown Rice

Grilled NY Strip Steaks with Cabernet Sauce
Roasted Asparagus with Parmesan and Olive oil
Oven Roasted Carrots with Indian spice