Bananas Foster Shake


serves 4, active time 10 minutes, total time 30 minutes

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter (about 3/4 ounce/22 grams)
  • 1 large banana, sliced (about 6 ounces/170 grams)
  • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar (about 1 1/2 ounces/38 grams
  • 1/4 cup dark or amber rum (about 2 ounces/60 milliliters)
  • Pinch of ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup cold whole or lowfat milk (about 2 1/2 ounces/ 75 milliliters)
  • 8 medium scoops French vanilla ice cream (about 1 quart/24 ounces/ 680 grams), softened until just melty


  1. For the bananas: Melt the butter in a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat and heat until it stops foaming. Add the bananas and brown sugar, stir to help melt the sugar and coat the bananas, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the bananas are soft and saucy, about 2 minutes. Add 3 tablespoons (1½ ounces/45 milliliters) of the rum, allow it to warm for a few seconds, and carefully wave a lit chimney match over the pan until the rum ignites. Allow the rum to burn until it extinguishes, about 30 seconds. Off the heat, add the cinnamon, stir to combine, and allow the mixture to cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes.
  1. For the shake Place the bananas, sauce, milk, and remaining 1 tablespoon (½ ounce/15 milliliters) of rum in a blender and blend to mix thoroughly, about 30 seconds. Add the ice cream and pulse several times to begin breaking it up. With the blender motor off, use a flexible spatula to mash the mixture down onto the blender blades. Continue pulsing, stopping, and mashing until the mixture is well blended, thick, and moves easily in the blender jar, roughly 30 to 90 seconds. Pour into a chilled glass or glasses, and serve at once.



Tortellini Pasta Salad


serves 4, active time 10, total time 15

  • 1 pound frozen tortellini
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced into strips
  • 1 ear steamed or boiled corn, kernels sliced off the cob
  • 1 tomato, halved, seeds squeezed out, flesh sliced into strips
  • 1/2 medium cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeds scooped out, sliced into strips
  • 1/2 small red onion, diced or thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2/3 cup canola or olive oil or a combination
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • crumbled goat cheese to garnish


  1. Bring a medium saucepan of water to boil. Add the tortellini and cook according to package directions, usually until they float. Drain, rinse, and allow to cool while preparing the other ingredients.
  2. In a small food processor (or whisk by hand in a large serving bowl), combine the vinegar and Dijon mustard. Process for 15 seconds until creamy, or whisk vigorously. Add the oil while the food processor is running to create a smooth emulsion, or dribble slowly into the bowl while whisking constantly. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  3. Combine the vegetables and dressing in a salad bowl. Add the tortellini and toss gently to coat. Season to taste, and serve with goat cheese crumbled on top.


Grilled, Loaded Twice-Baked Potatoes


serves 4, active time 15 minutes, total time 1 hour, 45 minutes

  • 4 medium Idaho baking potatoes, scrubbed
  • 4 ounces (1/2 block large box) cream cheese, room temperature
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 8 ounces (1 block) extra-sharp cheddar cheese, shredded, divided use
  • 4 slices peppered bacon, cooked and finely crumbled
  • 3 tablespoons finely minced, fresh chives
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted


  1. Adjust rack to the middle position of oven and preheat to 375°F. Poke each potato a several times with a fork and place directly on the rack. Bake until skin just starts to crisp and flesh is soft, about 1 hour. Remove from oven.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat a gas grill to 375°F.
  3. When cool enough to handle, slice off upper third of potatoes. Scoop out interior into a medium bowl, leaving a ¼-inch layer of flesh. Add cream cheese and sour cream and beat with a hand-held mixer until thoroughly combined and fluffy, about 30 seconds. Fold in all but ¼ cup of the cheddar cheese, bacon and chives with a wooden spoon. Season with salt, to taste.
  4. Brush outer skins with melted butter. Fill hollowed skins generously with potato mixture and sprinkle tops with reserved cheese. Place in the center of the grill over direct heat and cook until skins are crackly, the interiors are warmed through and the cheese on top is bubbly, 7-10 minutes. Remove from grill and let cool for 3 minutes before serving.


Banana Cinnamon Crumble Bread

  • 1 cup Butter, Soften
  • 2 cups Sugar
  • 4 Eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons Buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 teaspoon Banana Extract
  • 4 cups All Purpose Flour
  • 3 teaspoons Baking Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 3/4 cup chopped walnuts


  • 2/3 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 4 Tablespoons butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line and spray loaf pans.

Cream butter and sugar.  Add eggs individually and add extracts.  Mix dry ingredients and slowly add to batter.

In a food processor or chopper, add in crumble ingredients and mix till comes together to a crumble.

Spoon in 1/2 the batter into prepared loaf pan.  Sprinkle crumble and then add in the remain batter.  Sprinkle more crumble.  Repeat with remaining loaf pans.

Bake 50-60 minutes or till toothpick comes clean.



The Ultimate Lobster, Bacon, Lettuce, Avocado, and Tomato Sandwich

serves Makes 2 large sandwiches, serving 2 or 4, active time 1 hour, total time 1 hour

  • 2 ripe tomatoes
  • 2 small lobsters (about 1 pound each)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons fool-proof homemade mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons fresh juice from 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons finely sliced chives
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound thick-cut bacon
  • 2 small loaves ciabatta, split in half horizontally
  • 1 avocado, thinly sliced
  • 4 iceberg lettuce leaves, crisp white/pale yellow parts only


  1. For the Tomatoes: Bring a large pot of water that can fit a steamer attachment to a boil. Cut a small X in the bottom of each tomato. Place tomatoes in water and cook for 30 seconds, then immediately transfer to a bowl of cold water. Set aside. Pour off all but 1 inch of water from Dutch oven and add steamer insert. Cover and keep hot.
  2. For the Lobster: Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Meanwhile, kill each lobster by pressing the tip of a heavy chef’s knife in the crack just behind the eyes in the center of the carapace. Press down firmly, then split head in half. Using kitchen towels, twist off tail and claws (including knuckles) from carapace. Save carapace for another use.
  3. Place lobster claws and tails in steamer insert. Cover and steam for exactly 2 minutes, then transfer lobster to a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet (lobsters may still be twitching slightly—this is a reflex reaction. Don’t worry, they are dead). Repeat with remaining lobster. Transfer to oven and roast until claws reach 135°F in the center as measured on an instant-read thermometer, about 7 minutes. Remove claws and set aside on large plate. Continue roasting until tails reach 135°F in center, 7 to 15 minutes longer (depending on exact shape of tails). Remove from oven and transfer to a bowl of cold water.
  4. When cold, shuck lobster meat. Roughly chop, drain on paper towels, then transfer to a large bowl. Add 1 to 2 tablespoons mayonnaise (to taste), lemon juice, and chives. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep lobster salad refrigerated until ready to use.
  5. For the Bacon: Lay bacon slices on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet, allowing each slice to overlap slight lengthwise to form a solid sheet of bacon. Transfer to oven and cook until crisp, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly. Preheat broiler to high.
  6. While bacon cooks, peel tomatoes (the skins should slip off). Split each tomato into quarter, then using a sharp chef’s knife, remove the inner flesh and seeds to form 8 tomato filets. Set aside.
  7. Transfer bacon sheet to a cutting board, reserving fat separate. Cut bacon sheet into large pieces that just fit the bread. Set aside.
  8. Spread cut surface of each piece of bread with 1 teaspoon rendered bacon fat. Broil cut-side-up until well-browned.
  9. To Assemble: Spread mayonnaise to taste on each bottom bread half. Arrange avocado slices on top. Arrange bacon sheet on top of avocado. Add tomato filets. Spread mayonnaise to taste on the top of each bread half. Add lettuce leaves. Press lobster salad into lettuce leaves, compressing bread slightly. Close sandwiches. Cut in half, and serve.



Tuna Pesto Pasta

Enough for 2
150g (5oz) short pasta (I used gluten-free pasta)
5-6 tablespoons pesto
2 x 185g cans (2 x 6oz) tuna in oil, drained
2-3 handfuls baby spinach

1. Cook pasta in salted boiling water until al dente (see the packet for times).

2. Drain pasta and return to the pot. Stir in the pesto, tuna and baby spinach. Season and serve hot.


Spinach and Scallion Stuffed Chicken Breasts


serves serves 4

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 10 ounces spinach
  • 1/4 cup chopped scallions
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped dill
  • 1/2 cup chopped feta
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • Salt and pepper


  1. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add garlic and sauté until golden, about 30 seconds. Add spinach and saute until wilted. Let cool.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine scallions, dill, feta, and lemon zest. Add spinach and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Make a 2 to 3 inch deep horizontal cut into each chicken breast, forming a large pocket. Stuff each breast with spinach mixture.
  4. Heat a large ridged grill pan over medium high heat. Spray pan with nonstick cooking spray. Grill chicken breasts until cooked through, about 3-4 minutes per side.

Honey Garlic Chicken Slow Cooker Recipe

1 1/2 to 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs (4 or one thigh per family member)
3 garlic cloves, smashed and chopped
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 cup  soy sauce (La Choy or Tamari wheat-free are gluten free)
1/2 cup ketchup
1/3 cup honey

The Directions.

Use a 4-quart slow cooker (if using a 6-quart, this will cook faster. Check after 3 hours on high, 5 hours on low).
Put the chicken into your cooker. In a small bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients, then pour evenly over the top.
Cook on low for 6 hours or high for 3-4 (I’d go with low—).
Serve with basmati rice and steamed or roasted vegetables.

Chicken Tikka Masala

For the marinade:
1 lb Chicken, cut into cubes
1 cup Yogurt
1 tbsp Cumin powder
1/2 tbsp Coriander powder
1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
3 cloves Garlic, 1/2 inch Ginger–made into a paste or grated
1 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Chilli powder

For the sauce:
1 medium sized Onion, cubed
1/2 roasted Red Bell Pepper (about 1/2 cup when pureed)
6 Cashews
1 tsp Cumin powder
1/2 tsp Coriander powder
3 Cloves, 1/2 inch Cinnamon, 2 Cardamom pods–ground into fine powder
1 tbsp Kasoori Methi (dried Fenugreek leaves, found in Indian grocery stores)
1/4 cup Cream
2 tbsp Tomato ketchup
1 tbsp Butter
1 tbsp Oil
1/4 tsp of Chilli powder, or to taste
Salt to taste
Cilantro for garnish

How to make it:

  • Marinade the chicken with all the ingredients for marination for about 20-30 minutes
  • Grill or pan roast the marinated chicken and set aside
  • In the mean time, roast the onions in the pan with a few drops of oil unil lighlty browned.
  • Add the red bell peppers and cashew and toss them around for a couple of minutes. Take if off the stove and cool until ready to handle
  • Blend the mixture into a fine puree. Add a few tablespoons of water if necessary.
  • Heat a pan (you can use the same pan used for roasting) with a tablespoon of oil and a table spoon of butter.
  • When the butter just melts, add all the powders (clove, cinnamon, cardamom powder, cumin and coriander) and saute until their aroma wafts around.
  • Add the red bell pepper, onion and cashew puree and gently saute for 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the chilli powder and salt and the tomato ketchup. Mix well and add the cream.
  • Crush kasoori methi in your hands before adding to the mix and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Now add the grilled chicken pieces and toss to coat well in the sauce.
  • Check taste and adjust salt or chilli powder as desired.
  • If you want a thinner consistency add a few more tablespoons of water and a sparing splash of cream. Gently simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Garnish with cilantro and serve with Naans (Indian bread) or Basmati rice.

Banana Split Ice Cream Cake


serves serves 8, active time 20 minutes, total time 3 hours 20 minutes (includes chilling)

  • 1 1/2 cups (about 8 ounces) chocolate ice cream, softened
  • 2 1/2 cups (about 16 ounces) cookie or cake crumbs (chocolate preferred)
  • 1 cup (about 5 ounces) vanilla ice cream, softened
  • 1 cup (about 5 ounces) strawberry ice cream, softened
  • 2 medium ripe bananas, sliced into 1/4-inch coins
  • 1/2 cup hot fudge sauce
  • whipped cream, nuts, and a maraschino cherry for garnish (optional)


  1. Line a 9-inch cake or pie plate with plastic wrap, ensuring that once pressed into the pan, the plastic wrap extends out of the plate—this will make removal much easier later.
  2. Put the chocolate ice cream in the pan. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, spread the ice cream so that it forms an even layer on the bottom of the pan. Cover the chocolate ice cream layer with 1/3 of cookie crumbs.
  3. Spread vanilla ice cream over crumbs. Spread with another third of crumbs. Lay the banana slices on top of this crumb layer, making an even layer all across the pan.
  4. Spread strawberry ice cream over bananas, then top with remaining crumbs. Let chill for at least 3 hours, or overnight
  5. When you’re ready to serve, remove the pan from the freezer. If you gently tug on the plastic wrap and then turn the pan over, it should come out on a serving plate fairly easily; if not, run a butter knife under hot water and gently run it along the inside of the pan (outside of the plastic wrap). Place a plate on top, then turn together with pan to release.
  6. Directly before serving, spoon the hot fudge on top of the cake, and top it with whipped cream and nuts, and, if desired, a maraschino cherry on top.