Archive for August 16th, 2009

This is a strong, tasty spread that can be served with an assortment of crackers, toast points or a really good bread.  It reminded me of an olive tapenade.  It’s easy to make so don’t be put off by the instructions which tell you to make it the day/night before.  I made this at 9 pm last night to be ready for today.  It made the house smell glorious at that time of night.

DSC_0648Antipasto Spread by Joe  “A Taste of Utica”

  • 4 oz can mushrooms, stems and pieces. Drained and fine chop
  • 14 oz jar artichoke hearts. Drained and fine chop
  • 9 to 10 oz jar pimiento stuffed olives. Drain and fine chop
  • 6 0z can/jar ripe olives (I used Calamata). Drain and fine chop
  • 1/4 cup chopped green pepper (just under 1/2 a pepper)
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery (about 2 ribs)
  • 3/4 cup vinegar (I used apple cider vinegar)
  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup instant minced onion (if you use fresh onion, increase to 1/3 to 1/2 cup)
  • 2 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp onion salt (I used onion powder)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp seasoned salt. (I used Spike Gourmet Seasoning)


  • 1 tsp garlic salt (I used garlic powder)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp fresh ground pepper

Combine the first 6 ingredients in a bowl and mix well.


In a saucepan, combine the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.  I thought it smelled like chicken soup for some reason.  🙂


Pour the hot mixture over the vegetables/olives. 

In a large jar or container with a tight fitting lid, pour all the ingredients. 


Seal tightly and give the container a shake to combine all ingredients.  Refrigerate overnight.  Enjoy with your favorite crackers, breads, toast points, even crudites.  The spread has a strong flavor but it is really delicious and a great appetizer for get togethers.





If you enjoy the look of these recipes and have given them a try, why not get the book yourself and make them along with me.  I will post your photos as well as mine and your reviews.  OR…if you have a blog, I will link to your blog so everyone can see different opinions and “takes” on the recipes in “A Taste Of Utica”. 


Next week it’s Zucchini Appetizers. Yum!  As Paula Deen might say “Come ON, Ya’ll!”


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We enjoyed the heat of day yesterday.  We drove to my sisters house on the lake with Shane.   No one was home but we just wanted to enjoy the lake and the weather. 

Approaching her house, we heard quite the to-do.  Music, cheering…there was a water skiing event being held on the lake.  There was a pirate ship and a lot of boaters watching the contestants jump a ski jump positioned in the water. 

We brought wine, water, towels, boat shoes…but when I put my foot in my right boat shoe, what a surprise! 

DSC_0622A mouse had made a nest in it.  I haven’t worn them in over a year and they were stashed in the darkest corners of our garage..but still – yuck!  I couldn’t bring myself to wear them after that.

Then Shane and Ted hit the water and there was no getting them out. Shane loves it.












Those crab apples had to be used.  Yesterday I made the crab apple pie with plum-apricots.  It is delicious. But first, I have to tell you a little about the “APPLE” copied from The Cook’ Canon by Raymond Sokolov

The all American apple actually evolved from crossing the indigenous crab apple with the European apple seed back in colonial times.  Europeans have rights to claim the apple as their preeminent fruit. 

How do we distinguish between pie and tart?  The deep dish shape of the crust and the straightforward style of filling (predominant in English pies), are quite different from the shallow, pre-baked French crust and creme patissiere of a classic tart. 

Here is my recipe for a basic apple pie adapted from the above book, on page 1 – 2


The Pastry

  • 1 2/3 cups flour
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup + 1 TBS butter
  • 1 2/3 tsp cider vinegar
  • 2 2/3 TBS milk
  • 1 egg

The Filling


  • 3 cups peeled, cored, sliced apples (I used crab apples but a mixture of Granny Smith and Cortlands would be GREAT!)
  • 2/3 cup Organic Pure Cane Sugar
  • 2 TBS dark brown sugar
  • 2 tsp Apple Pie Spice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 5.3 oz plain – GREEK STYLE yogurt ( if not Greek style, you need to let it drain in a colander over a bowl in the fridge for about 4 – 6 hours to get the moisture out)
  • 2 TBS flour

The Pastry Directions:

In a mixing bowl, stir together 1 2/3 cups flour and salt. Cut in the butter a little at a time and use a pastry blender or 2 forks to mix into a crumbly texture.

Using an electric mixer, beat the vinegar, milk and egg.  Fold into the crumbly dough gradually.  Divide into half and refrigerate for at least an hour.

Mix all of your filling ingredients together.  Preheat the oven to 425 F. 

Put flour on the countertop of rolling board and put one of the dough halves onto it.  Use a rolling pin to make a large circle, enough to drape over a 9″ deep dish pie pan.  Trim excess from edges and crimp with a fork.  Pierce the bottom all over with a fork.

Pour in the filling mixture, mounding it in the middle. 


Roll out second dough half  making it slightly larger by using any trimmed scraps from the bottom crust.  Moisten the edges of the bottom crust slightly with water.  Roll the top layer of dough up around the rolling pin and unroll on top of the pie.  Press around the edges to seal together.  Make holes in the top in several places with the fork and a hole, about 1/4″ in the center for steam to escape.

Bake for 10 minutes then reduce heat to 350 F and cook another 40 minutes.  Cool.  Serves 8 – 10.


Oh PLEASE don’t make us eat it!


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