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Pignoli Cookies I

Reviewed: Jan. 22, 2014
Sweet, but not too sweet, these are incredibly good with a cup of black coffee or a citrus-y herb tea. Once had a half-zested orange and thought "why not" so added the rest of the zest (about a tsp.)to this recipe. Yes! Perfect excuse (if you needed one) to have a couple of these cookies for breakfast! Chill the almond paste before processing with the sugar and the dough is nice and firm to work with.
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Sicilian Spaghetti

Reviewed: Feb. 26, 2013
This is my "go to" comfort food; after a long day at work nothing's better and few things are cheaper. The anchovies are critical, but otherwise it is a pretty substitution friendly recipe. A couple of times I've had fresh spinach, so I've tossed it in there instead of parsley. Romano cheese works just as well as Parm. and my rule of cheese is Some is good; more is better. My mom makes this with a mix of about 1/3 butter to 2/3 olive oil. I made it in college ALOT and once used only butter. Blech. Back to olive oil! I use a bit more than this recipe calls for, since I like it not so dry. I also use the oil the anchovies are packed in.
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Greek Spaghetti II

Reviewed: Feb. 26, 2013
It's so simple yet so good! Basic comfort food. My "Ya-Ya" put red pepper flakes in a shaker beside this so you could add them to taste; perfect for us kids!
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Best Ever Banana Bread

Reviewed: Nov. 10, 2010
I bake for some of the most finicky folk on the planet, one of whom turns up her nose if a baked good contains cinnamon or "too much" vanilla! Another won't eat anything that is "too sweet." Two will not eat nuts. (I know... but they're a pretty good bunch otherwise!)This bread is so moist and flavorful that ALL of them were impressed and have requested it! Once I did not have buttermilk so I used fat-free vanilla yoghurt ( 1 to 1 substitution) and that tasted great too. When I make it for my house I use the pecans and add 1Tbs Penzey's "cake spice" which gives a warmer flavor. In short, this IS the best banana bread recipe I've ever come across in its origional form and with minor alterations made for necessity or personal preference.
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Creamy PHILADELPHIA Penne Pasta with Chicken

Reviewed: Jun. 3, 2009
Took this to a church board meeting and it was a hit! One member is allergic to peppers, so I used some shredded carrot for color. Also used canned evaporated milk to enhance creaminess. Spiced it up a little w/ granulated garlic and a bit more rosemary and a few more olives than called for. Used a mix of boneless breats and thigh meat to save cost and add moisture. Very tasty. Held up well on the buffett!
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Spicy Cabbage Kimchi

Reviewed: Apr. 23, 2009
Made 2 batches, the first exactly as the recipe instructed except that I used regular crushed hot peppers as I could not find the Korean sort. Most grocery stores with an asian section now carry fish sauce, though it is generallt labled "Thai" fish sauce. Even after much rinsing of the cabbage this recipe was so salty that if any fermentation took place the tingle was lost in the brine. So then... I took the advice of another reviewer and cut the salt in half. This still drew out the water beautifully. I also like a bit more ginger in my Kimchi, so I omitted the ground ginger and added 2 (1") pieces of sliced dried ginger and 2 Tbsp of diced crystalized (candied/ sugared) ginger. Also added a Tbsp of whole black peppercorns. After 4 days in the closet and a day in the 'fridge the Kimchee was bubbly and yummy! This was very easy to make, and the ingredients are inexpensive. I won't be going back to the jar stuff from the grocery store! I understand every Korean Kimchi maker has his/her secret recipe, so just keep adjusting yours until you find what you like!
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