Archive for April, 2011

A Chef of Your Own cooked for a beautiful outdoor wedding in a Jeeves Managed home last night.  I carved the melon with the bride and grooms initials. The menu was BBQ, pulled pork, cole slaw, pasta salad, BBQ Roast Salmon, Grilled Chicken fingers and Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake with fresh whipped cream and strawberry sauce.

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Another great demo at The Fresh Market this week. Now for a cookie contest. Leave me a comment here and I will randomly select a winner of the dozen cookies first thing Friday morning.

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That’s what I said when a recent A Chef of Your Own client asked for Banoffee Pie for dessert. It is another dessert from across the pond, England.  Being the trooper I am, I went to the internet and looked it up. There really are a lot of really good sites out there to get recipes. This one came off of Paula Deen’s page. I didn’t want to mess with making the toffee so I cheated and used a quality Dulce de Leche I found at the store. The guests couldn’t believe I had never made it before and it was the hit of the meal. I thought it was pretty good as did the rest of us that got to taste the leftover piece. Thank you Wayne and Dani, I wish you many happy returns.

Banoffee Pie – adapted from Paula Deen

Graham cracker pie shell

1 (15 oz) jar Dulce de Leche

3 bananas

1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream, whipped to stiff peaks

¼ cup sugar

1 tsp vanilla

Warm Dulce de Leche gently in a warm water bath. Pour into bowl and add sliced bananas. Toss gently to coat. Spoon mixture into graham crust, cool in refrigerator ½ hour. Top with whipped cream and serve. I served it with peanut butter ice cream.

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Here is a Chef of Your Own recipe I have adapted from Cooking light magazine. When I make meatloaf for my clients, I freeze it raw so when they bake it off it is a freshly baked item. I hope you enjoy this as much as my guests.

Italian Meatloaf

2 lbs lean ground beef

1/3 cup finely chopped onion

4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

2 tsp basil

1 tsp oregano

1/3 cup crushed tomatoes

1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes

8 oz fresh mozzarella, cut into 1/4 inch chunks

1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp pepper

1 egg

1/2 cup bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray 9x5x3 inch loaf pan.

In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients. Transfer to loaf pan and press into place. Bake for 50 minutes to one hour, or until cooked to 160 degrees and juices run clear.

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This recipe is for a good friend and client who has asked for it for her birthday. I wish you many happy returns. I got this from allrecipes.com, a favorite site of mine to get recipes.

French Silk Pie

1/2 cup butter, room temperature

3/4 cup white sugar

2 (1 oz) squares unsweetened baking chocolate, melted and cooled

1 tsp vanilla

2 eggs, (since this recipe will not be cooked, I use pasteurized eggs. allrecipe.com suggests that high risk individuals not consume this pie, I would rather not take a chance)

1 prebaked 8 inch pastry shell, baked and cooled

Cream butter in a mixing bowl. Gradually beat in the sugar with a mixer until light and well blended. Stir in the thoroughly cooled chocolate, add the vanilla. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating 5 minutes on medium speed after each addition. Pour into pie shell. Refrigerate 2 hours before serving.

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Today is a first for the demo’s at The Fresh Market. A Chef of Your own will be preparing a vegetarian entrée. Please stop by at the Fresh Market in Dr Phillips if you get the chance, today, April 9th from 3-6. Hope you enjoy this. Here is a link to a video to see it prepared, http://www.chefsusa.com/freshmarket/tfm_nicoise_salad_meatballs_04_11.wmv Here is the recipe for Mediterranean “Meat” Balls.

Mediterranean “Meat” Balls

Serves 4 – 6


1 pkg Harmony Valley Hamburger Mix,

prepared to package directions

3 tbsp fresh mint, chopped, plus extra for garnish

2 tbsp fresh oregano, chopped

⅓ c crumbled feta cheese, plus extra for garnish

3 cloves garlic, minced, divided

3 tbsp T FM Italian Style Bread Crumbs

1 large egg

4 tbsp T FM Extra Virgin Olive Oil for frying

1 shallot, minced

. c T oasted Head Untamed Red wine

1 jar T FM Pasta Sauce of your choice


Combine Hamburger Mix, mint, oregano, feta, egg, breadcrumbs and 2

cloves garlic and gently roll into “meat”balls, being careful not to overwork

the mixture. Heat 3 tbsp oil in a large skillet over medium high heat; add

meatballs in a single layer and brown evenly on all sides. Remove to a

platter and keep warm. Make sauce in the same pan by adding remaining

olive oil and quickly sauteing shallot and remaining garlic in reserved pan

drippings. Remove pan from heat and add wine, scraping up the browned

bits. Allow to reduce slightly; then add pasta sauce. Stir to combine; return

meatballs to pan and cook in sauce for 5 minutes, or until cooked through.

Serve with fresh mint and feta sprinkled on top.

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This is A Chef of Your Own recipe I have made for many clients. It is a vegetarian entrée, you can add tofu crumbles or ground beef if you like.

Spinach Stuffed Lasagna Ruffles

1 8oz pkg lasagna noodles

1 8oz pkg cream cheese, softened

20 oz spinach

1 1/2 cups Parmesan cheese, grated

1 15 oz container ricotta cheese

2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded

1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning

1/4 tsp salt

32 oz spaghetti sauce, meatless

Cook the noodles according to the package directions. Drain and set aside.

Filling: Beat cream cheese until smooth, stir in the spinach, 1 cup os the parm cheese, ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese, Italian seasoning and salt.

 Spread 1/4 to 1/2 cup of the filling over each cooked noodle. Roll the noodles up lengthwise

Pour enough sauce in the pan to cover the bottom. Cutting each lasagna roll in half (crosswise) place them in the sauce, cut side down. After placing all the rolls in the pan, top with the remaining sauce and parmesan cheese.

Bake in preheated 350 degree oven 30-40 minutes or until hot throughout.

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A Chef of Your Own will be serving these pancakes this week to some guests vacationing here in Orlando. The recipe comes from Disney’s Port Orleans Restaurant and they are “yummy”

Sweet Potato Pancakes


  • 1 1/4 cups brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 12 ounces mashed sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 cup butter ( at room temperature)
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup toasted pecans


  1. To make pecan honey butter, combine butter, honey and toasted pecans. Set aside.
  2. To make the pancakes, combine dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Stir in milk and beaten eggs. Add oil and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Fold in the mashed sweet potatoes (should result in a lumpy texture). In a small nonstick frying pan, heat 1 teaspoon vegetable oil over medium heat. Pour in batter to desired size. Cook until dark brown (sweet potato pancakes take a little longer to cook than regular pancakes because of the density of the sweet potatoes). Serve pancakes warm with pecan honey butter.

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