A personal kitchen diary. I try new recipes and make notes on what works and what doesn't. Sometimes I can things, and sometimes I dry herbs. This is the story of my kitchen.

Month: February 2019

Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Yogurt/Honey/Aleppo Dip

Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Yogurt/Honey/Aleppo Dip

On a road trip last September we stopped for lunch in Lincoln, New Hampshire at a restaurant called The Gypsy Cafe. Everything was delicious, but the brussel sprout appetizer they had was amazing. I knew I couldn’t prepare it exactly like the restauarant, but I […]

Crockpot Hot Wings via @fitslowcookerqueen

Crockpot Hot Wings via @fitslowcookerqueen

Mine really is a Crockpot from Rival so I can call it a Crockpot, not just a slow cooker.  Wedding present over 30 years ago, still going strong.  And, I’m still learning new ways to use it. Two bloggers I like to follow are FitSlowCookerQueen […]

Bruschetta and Two Types of Topping

Bruschetta and Two Types of Topping

I like bruschetta but had never made it myself.  I’m having friends over for lasagne next weekend, so I decided to do a trial run of some bruschetta and if it worked out, I would make it as an appetizer next weekend.

Spoiler alert: they turned out fine.  I’ll make a couple of adjustments, but they will be pretty much the way I made them today.

I checked out Elizabeth Minchilli’s web site, as well as David Lebovitz’ site (two people I follow and trust their recipes and instructions) and googled for a mushroom topping that sounded similar to one we used to get at a local Italian restaurant.

The tomato topping is Elizabeth Minchilli’s with virtually no changes, and can be found here.

David Lebovitz had more specific instructions regarding preparing the bread, which I followed except I forgot he said to bake and I broiled.  Turned out fine.  His instructions are here.

The mushroom topping comes from no one’s recipe, I just read a few that were more elaborate than I wanted to do, and made it according to the way I wanted it to taste.

Here are the two toppings I made.

At this time of year, the Sweet Cherub tomatoes are the ones I can get that have the most flavor.  Even so, I think I’m going to have to give this a flavor boost next weekend, perhaps by infusing the olive oil with garlic for an hour or so before I make up the tomato mixture.

With in season tomatoes, this will be spectacular, but as is, it’s still tasty.  The ingredients consist of tomatoes, olive oil, salt, and fresh basil.  See the Elizabeth Minchilli site for the recipe.

Mushroom Topping

12 oz mushrooms, cleaned, stems removed and quartered or chopped into bite size even pieces.

2 Tbsp butter

1 tsp garlic paste

2 tablespoon diced onion

Salt to taste

2 + stems fresh thyme, to taste

Heat the butter over medium heat in a 12 inch pan.  Once the butter has melted, add the onions and garlic paste, and stir regularly until the onion is softened, but not browned.  (Note, I will probably add 1/4 to 1/3 cup of diced onion next time.)

Add the mushrooms, and stir to coat.  Continue cooking over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms release their liquids, and continuing stirring until no liquid remains.  Strip the leaves from the thyme stems and stir into the mushroom mixture.

Taste, and adjust seasonings as you like.


I used a baguette and sliced 1/2 thick slices on the diagonal.  I brushed with olive oil and put under the broiler for maybe a minute.  I just kept my eye on them and took them out when they started browning.

Almost immediately I rubbed the cut side of garlic cloves over each toast.

I gave 2 to Steve to taste test.

He declared them okay.  But, he also said he would eat more.

So I was going to serve them like this.

But ended up doing the topping myself.


Black Bean Dip, or Topping or Soup – Your Choice

Black Bean Dip, or Topping or Soup – Your Choice

I made this first as a black bean dip, but, it tasted so good that I also used it on a baked sweet potato, and later thinned it with some broth and ate it as soup! I cooked chopped red onion, seeded and diced jalapeños, […]