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Shrimp and Scallop Ceviche with Homemade Tortilla Chips

12 Dec


Shrimp and Scallop Ceviche with Homemade Corn Chips


Fresh Shrimp and Bay Scallops


Cucumber, Yellow Pepper, White Onion, Cilantro, Orange and Lime Juice

Fresh Tomato Juice and Jalapeno



Combine all ingredients in bowl and allow the acidity from the

lime and orange juice to cook the shrimp and scallops




Smoked Salmon Amuse Bouche

7 Dec

Dill & Chive Cream Cheese



Thinly Sliced Red Onion


Caper Berries


Nova Lox



San Sebastián by The Pleasure Monger – Local Favorites and Outstanding Tapas Bars in Spain

9 Nov

I stumbled upon this exquisitely written article about one foodies travels through San Sebastian Spain. She encounters some of the neighborhood favorite dishes and local lifestyle on a Pinxtos Crawl, which is a Pub Crawl of sorts where the crawlers hop from bar to bar enjoying strong libations, nibbling on Pinxtos, and socializing with with townies and travelers.

One of my favorites is the large freshly grown local mushrooms from Bar Ganbara. All shapes and sizes, these must have been a genuine delicacy. Another one that was quitye intriguing to me and even inspired me to try to replicate a version in my own kitchen was the Anchovie and Foie Gras Crostini from Txepetxa. I could only imagine how rich and deliciously fresh that tasted; now if only I could create something similar!

Well enjoy the wonderful food and the wonderful writing The Pleasure Monger brings in this engaging and literarily whimsical piece.

San Sebastián – The Land of Promiscuous Eating « The Pleasure Monger.

Poutine with Smoked Gouda and Homemade Gravy

9 Nov






































Smoked Mozzarella Caprese Bites with Cherry Tomatoes and Spinach

26 Oct


Cracked Pepper and Thyme Ciabatta

22 Oct

I love fresh baked bread, there is just something about pulling it out of the oven and having that delicious fresh baked bread smell fill your house! The outside is crunchy, the inside is warm and fluffy, it is a genuine treat. My girlfriend and I are obsessed with ciabatta bread and this recipe has some outstanding flavors that make this bread so good you can eat it all by itself! The olive oil adds a rich aroma, the pepper provides for a nice strong bite, and the thyme is fresh and herbaceous!

Heres what you need:

3 cups flour

1 packet dry active yeast

1 cup room temp water

olive oil


cracked black pepper

fresh thyme

Heres what you do:

1. In a large mixing bowl sift flour and add a pinch of salt. Mix it all together. Dig out a small hole in the flour and pour in the yeast and water. Mix water and yeast gently with your finger and leave for 5-10 minutes, until yeast forms bubbles.

2. After bubbles have formed add handful of chopped thyme, cracked pepper, and 4 tbls olive oil. Mix ingredients together with hand to form a nice ball of dough. It should be firm and not sticky.

3. Transfer dough to floured surface and knead for 10 minutes. Push your palms into the dough, fold and turn. Repeat this process until dough is pliable. Transfer to a lightly floured bowl cover with a damp towel and let it rest for 1 hour. Dough should double in size.


4. Remove dough to floured surface and give it a light knead to expel all the air. Form it into a nice 1 in high loaf and transfer to an lightly oiled and floured oven tray. Cover with damp cloth and let rest 1 hour, dough should double in size.

5. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees F. Dust top of bread with flour and bake for roughly 30 minutes, until bread has slightly browned. Pull from oven and enjoy your nice and toasty fresh baked Ciabatta.

For a nice flavor dip in olive oil and balsamic with some cracked pepper. I also love a little butter spread on mine, it melts the moment it hits the bread!




Garlic Herb and Parmesan Crostini

20 Oct

Great little crostini you can garnish over soups, salad, pasta, or dips. A nice crunchy crostini that is exploding with a fresh herby cheesy flavor! The thyme provides a very natural aromatic flavor that perfectly compliments the parsley and the rich garlic flavor that explodes in your mouth! You can make this with a variety of different herbs and seasonings that cater to your particular dish and taste.

What ya need:
French baguette, or similar

fresh parsley

fresh thyme

1 clove garlic

fresh parmesan

2 1/2 tbls butter

1 tbls extra virgin

sea salt

crack black pepper, coarse

Heres what ya do:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F

2. Slice the baguette on an angle and lay out on a baking sheet.

3. Chop the parsley and thyme and mince the garlic, mix with the butter and oil and sea salt + coarse fresh cracked black.



















4. Spread on top each slice of baguette. Sprinkle each with fresh grated parmesan.

5. Bake until parmesan is melted and the crostini are a nice golden brown.




Black Mussels in White Wine Tomato Sauce with Fresh Baked French Bread

19 Oct

This dish takes me right back to my childhood on the east coast. Growing up in Connecticut so close to the beach we only had the freshest seafood and one of my favorites were Mussels in a tomato Broth with some nice crusty bread to sop it all up! My fish monger had some super fresh black mussels he got in this morning and he hooked it up for Sammy G’s Kitchen!


Heres what ya need:

2 lbs fresh wild Black Mussels

1 1/2 cups white wine (Chardonnay)

5 large tomatoes, diced

French Bread

4 cloves garlic

5 shallots

italian parsley



olive oil



Heres what you do:

1. Clean mussels under cool running water. Scrub algae/ barnacles off with a strong billed brush or small knife. Be sure to remove the beard with knife as well. Discard any with broken shells or any that are open.

2. Melt 2 tbls butter and 2 tbls extra virgin olive oil in large pot over medium heat. Add shallots and saute 3 minutes. Add garlic and saute another 3, or until shallots are transparent.

3. Add diced tomatoes and white wine, I recommend Chardonnay because it is smooth and buttery, bring to a boil and season with half of your chopped thyme and parsley, s+p and a dash of saffron. Add muscles and give it a gentle stir.


4. Cover pot and cook muscles 8-10 minutes until shells have opened, discard any that do not open after 10 minutes. Be careful not to overcook because the muscles will begin to get tough.

5. Add chopped parsley and thyme and give it a stir.

6. Scoop into serving bowls and garnish with parsley and slice fresh baked French Bread.

Bon Appetit!


Garlic Rosemary Croutons

9 Oct

Please don’t ever buy a bag of croutons, they are stale, loaded with preservatives, and are horribly over-seasoned. Croutons are so easy to make and this is a killer recipe that you can really take in your own direction and really build the flavors in the crouton around your whole dish. This work great on my Classic Caesar Salad but you can also make a little oregano and parmesan to top off a Bouillabaisse or tomato soup or with Cayenne Pepper and a dash of Paprika to dip into my delicious Hummus. The possibilities are endless.

What ya need:
1 loaf of your favorite bread, I prefer a french loaf
2 garlic cloves, minced
3-4 sprigs rosemary, chopped
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Heres what ya do:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Cut your loaf of bread into 3/4″ cubes and place in large bowl.
3. Whisk together your garlic rosemary, and olive oil and pour over the diced bread. Give them a good toss and make sure all the pieces are lightly coated.
4. Toss in the oven until crispy and golden brown, about 10-15 minutes. Throw em on your salad, soup, or dip.

Classic Caesar Salad

9 Oct

By far my favorite salad, its tangy, salty, savory, and creamy. Add a nice sliced breast of chicken, some fresh cut tomatoes and my homemade garlic croutons. Top it all with some shaved parmesan and fresh cracked black you got yourself the best homemade caesar salad you’ve ever had.

What ya need:

for the dressing:

2 cloves garlic, smashed
Dijon mustard
1 egg white (or substitute tablespoon mayo)
fresh grated parmesan
juice of lemon
red wine vinegar
worchestire sauce
chopped anchovies
extra virgin
fresh cracked pepper

for the salad:

head of romaine
cherry tomatoes, halved
my Homemade Garlic and Rosemary Croutons
shaved parmesan
lemon wedge
fresh cracked pepper

Heres what ya do:

1. Combine vinegar, worchestire, dijon, egg white, and lemon juice in bowl and whisk. Add in anchovies, parmesan, black pepper and whisk again.

2. Slowly drizzle the olive oil while whisking to emulsify the oil into the dressing. It is important to whisk fast and drizzle the oil slowly or else the oil and vinegar in your dressing will separate. Whish until the dressing is a nice light and creamy consistency, I find its about a 1/4 cup oil oil in all.

3. Clean and chop your romaine leaves and place on plate top with cherry tomatoes and Homemade Garlic Croutons (you can also add a Grilled Chicken Breast or some fresh avocado slices).
Drizzle your dressing over nicely.

4. Garnish with lemon wedge, shaved parmesan and some fresh cracked pepper.

All hail the Caesar!


9 Oct

This is a favorite of mine, there is nothing I love more that a delicious fresh hummus with pita, vegetables, and some Mediterranean olives. This is a very classic recipe but it has a lot of room for invention and a little personal touch. Sometimes I’ll add some cilantro and jalepeno for a southwestern flair or some olives and red pepper for somewhat of a tapenade.

Heres what ya need:
Simple Roasted Garlic
2 lbs cooked chickpeas or garbanzo beans
tahini paste
juice of lemon+zest
red pepper flakes

extra virgin



Heres what ya do:

1. If you are using canned beans make sure they are well rinsed.

2. Combine all ingredients minus extra virgin olive oil in a blender or food processor.

3. Blend until chunky then slowly drizzle in olive oil through the top until hummus is has a creamy consistency.

4. Place in serving bowl and sprinkle with paprika, cayenne pepper, and cumin. Garnish with pita.

Roasted Garlic

9 Oct

So this is a nice and simple roasted garlic recipe. I love roasted garlic because it has a wide variety of uses and can be consumed as is without having that heavy bitter garlic flavor. I like it as a spread on a sandwich, mixed in with mashed potatoes, or in a variety of dips and sauces to give them a deep sweet and aromatic flavor.

Heres what ya need:
1 head garlic
extra virgin olive oil

Heres what ya do:

1. Slice garlic clove in half and  place in a square of foil.

2. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and a nice drizzle of olive oil.

3. Seal up the package and throw into a 375 degree F oven for 40-45 minutes.

4. Squeeze garlic out from bottom like a tube of toothpaste! It’s good enough to brush your teeth with.

Bruschetta with Arugula, Pancetta, and Goat Cheese

9 Oct

There is nothing I love more than a nice big and fresh bruschetta. Salty, crunchy, and creamy a bruschetta makes a great meal for yourself or a killer appy that your friends will love. In this one I use fresh roma tomatoes, shallots, basil, and crispy pancetta on top of a crispy loaf of bread with mozzarella cheese, arugula, and a nice drizzle of balsamic vinegar and extra virgin, good crack of pepper at your good to go like a prom date.

Heres what you need:

1 loaf firm french baguette
4 oz arugula
2-3 oz fine mozzarella
few basil leaves, chopped
5 fresh roma tomatoes, diced
3 shallots, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 oz pancetta
balsamic vinegar
extra virgin olive oil
cracked black pepper

What ya gotta do:

1. Slice up the pancetta and fry in a pan with olive oil until crispy. Remove from pan and set aside.

2. Mix 1 clove minced garlic with a few tablespoons butter and spread it on the sliced baguette. Throw that in a 375 degree oven until crispy and the top begins to brown, about 5 minutes.

3. Combine the tomatoes, shallots, crispy pancetta, garlic, and basil in a bowl. Add a little pepper (but be careful when adding salt because the pancetta is already very salty) with a little bit of olive oil and balsamic. Give this a good toss and stick in the fridge to let the flavors meddle.

4. Spread some of the sliced mozzarella cheese on the baguette slices and top with the tomato mixture. Add a good handful of arugula, some crumbled mozzarella, and a nice drizzle of olive oil and balsamic.