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Ravioli with White Wine and Leeks

First had this at one of our favourite restaurants in nearby Merida – Il Caffe Italiano. Had to try and duplicate this subtle dish. Et voila as the French say. PINTEREST as I say…LOL. I would highly recommend it for your Christmas Eve or New Years dinner. Suggestion is to serve it with grilled asparagus spears…I chose not to…

Ravioli with White Wine Butter Sauce (and Asparagus – optional)


  • One 9 ounce package chilled fresh ravioli
  • One bunch asparagus (about 15-20 spears), trimmed and cut into two inch pieces. You can use just the tips or if you like lots of asparagus, use the stems as well! OPTIONAL
  • 2 tablespoons coarse salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 leeks carefully washed and chopped into 1/4 inch slices. Dont use the dark green parts!
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into cubes
  • ¾ cup white wine
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped thyme, plus more for garnish
  • Shaved Parmesan cheese for garnish


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add salt and olive oil, and then asparagus. Cook asparagus until just crisp-tender, about 2 minutes, and remove asparagus with a slotted spoon, leaving the water boiling. OPTIONAL – just boil some water for the ravioli !
  2. Add one tablespoon of butter to a medium size skillet and melt over medium high heat. Add leeks and garlic and stir until soft, 2-3 minutes.
  3. Stir in wine and simmer until reduced by half, about 2-3 minutes. Now add butter, cube by cube, stirring until each one is melted into the sauce.
  4. While the sauce is cooking, add the ravioli gently to the boiling (asparagus*) water (I like to lower them in with a slotted spoon) and cook according to package directions until just done, about 6 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and put in a single layer on a plate until the sauce is finished.
  5. When all the butter is melted, stir in the chopped thyme.
  6. Divide the ravioli between two plates, (and tuck the asparagus tips in between the ravioli – OPTIONAL). Drizzle a generous portion of sauce over each serving, garnish with fresh thyme and shaved Parmesan and serve at once!



Baked Lemon Asparagus

As a kid we used to pick asparagus along the ditches near our home in early spring. Mother always boiled it…YUCK!

Both of us love asparagus and it is in season here right now. In the past I always have done it on the grill, with garlic and Parmesan cheese. Sometimes I make asparagus fries in the oven with panko, egg and Parmesan. Feeling lazy I looked for something simpler. It was a lot less time consuming.

Baked Lemon Asparagus (
• 2 bunches asparagus
• 1 lemon
• 4 Tbsp butter
• Olive oil
• Salt & Pepper
• ½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1. Rinse 2 bunches of asparagus and break off the ends by holding the base end and snapping it wherever it snaps.
2. Place asparagus in a large baking dish, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper.
3. Squeeze ½ of a lemon over the asparagus. Cover the top third of the asparagus with lemon slices from the other half of your lemon (optional).
4. Thinly slice 4 tbsp of butter and line the center of the asparagus with butter.
5. Bake at 400°F for 12 minutes or until asparagus is tender. Remove asparagus from the oven and set oven to Broil.
6. Sprinkle the center of the asparagus with Parmesan cheese and broil 2-3 minutes or until cheese is melted and golden.



I first had eggs Madeleine in a small restaurant on Hazelton Lane in Toronto back in the early 2000s. Needless to say I fell in love with the smoked salmon version of Benedict. Finally got up my nerve to try it since we always have smoked salmon in the fridge. Thanks to Tyler Florence of Food Network for his version, which I modified to include the salmon!

Hollandaise Sauce (Tyler Florence)

The sauce is the trickiest part. Have all of the sauce ingredients ready, put your muffins in the toaster BUT don’t start them. Have a pan ready to make your poached eggs!


4 egg yolks
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice OR sour orange juice if you can get it
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted (1 stick)
Pinch cayenne
Pinch salt


Vigorously whisk the egg yolks and lemon juice together in a stainless steel bowl and until the mixture is thickened and doubled in volume. Place the bowl over a saucepan containing barely simmering water (or use a double boiler,) the water should not touch the bottom of the bowl. Continue to whisk rapidly. Be careful not to let the eggs get too hot or they will scramble. Slowly drizzle in the melted butter and continue to whisk until the sauce is thickened and doubled in volume. Remove from heat, whisk in cayenne and salt. Cover and place in a warm spot until ready to use for the eggs benedict. If the sauce gets too thick, whisk in a few drops of warm water before serving.
4slices Canadian bacon* OR smoked salmon
2English muffins, split
2 teaspoons white vinegar
Salt and pepper, to taste
Hollandaise sauce, recipe above
Fresh chopped parsley, for garnish

*Brown the bacon in a medium skillet and toast the English muffins, cut sides up, on a baking sheet under the broiler.

Fill a 10-inch nonstick skillet half full of water. Add white vinegar to the cooking water. This will make the egg white cook faster so it does not spread. Bring to a slow boil. Gently break 1 of the eggs into the water taking care not to break it. Repeat with remaining eggs. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer. Cook 3 1/2 minutes until the egg white is set and yolk remains soft. Remove with a slotted spoon, allowing the egg to drain.
To assemble: Lay a slice of Canadian bacon OR smoked salmon on top of each muffin half, followed by a poached egg. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon Hollandaise sauce over the eggs. Garnish with chopped parsley. Yield: 4 servings
Great served with fresh cooked asparagus spears!


Crispy Baked Asparagus Fries

How to get friends and family to eat asparagus….. we served these last night and they were INCREDIBLE! Our friend who never touches the stuff had seconds. I would serve this again as a side dish, as well as a great appetizer for a buffet…..

Check out the source of this recipe

If you subscribe to the site you will receive an eBook of other recipes he has come across…

Crispy Baked Asparagus Fries

Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 10 minutes Total Time: 20 minutes Servings: 2+

Asparagus coated in panko bread crumbs and Parmesan and baked until golden brown and crispy.


  • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup parmigiano reggiano (Parmesan), grated
  • salt and pepper to taste


1.     Dredge the asparagus in the flour, dip in the egg and then into a mixture of the panko, parmesan, salt and pepper.

2.     Place the asparagus in a single layer on a wire rack on a baking sheet and bake in a preheated 425F oven until golden brown, about 7-13 minutes. If you don’t have a baking rack, use parchment paper.

Nutrition Facts: Calories 312, Fat 8g (Saturated 4g, Trans 0), Cholesterol 172mg, Sodium 174mg, Carbs 44g (Fiber 6g, Sugars 5g), Protein 19g



Asparagus and Corn Chowder (with chorizo sausage)

Another recipe as a result of a Costco Multi purchase of two packs…this time asparagus! Had to do some searching since I did not want to use potatoes since I had none…LOL

Asparagus and Corn Chowder

Found this recipe in  Pittsburgh Post Gazette dated July 2, 1945….. still works with a couple of modifications for today. Check out my options below the recipe!

 1 pound asparagus ( Cut off tops and set aside; cut remaining stalks into 1 inch pieces)

1 ½ tsp. salt

1 ½ cups water

 1 can of creamed corn

1 cup of milk

½ teaspoon sugar

1 small white onion chopped

¼ cup flour

2 Tablespoons melted butter



 Simmer asparagus STALKS in medium boiling salted water for 10 minutes.

Add asparagus tops and onion – continue to simmer for 5 minutes.

Add creamed corn, milk and sugar. Stir and reduce heat a bit.

 Mix melted butter with the flour and slowly add to the chowder mix until it begins to thicken.



 1.     While the asparagus is simmering away, chop up two chorizo sausages (Johnsonville Italian would also work) into slices and brown in a small frying pan. Add them to the chowder before adding the flour/butter mix.

2.     Consider adding some chopped red pepper when you add the asparagus tops…



Balsamic Glazed Carrots/Maple Glazed Asparagus Bundles

Whether you use these as appetizers or side dishes is not important. We had both of these at our friends’  Sandy and Ted’s in KW and thoroughly enjoyed both. They are great Summer additions to any menu.

Balsamic-Glazed Carrots:

8 servings, 25 minutes prep and cook time.
10 carrots (1 1/4 lbs.) peeled, quartered lengthwise.
1/4 cup Kraft Calorie-wise Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing (optional: 1-2 oz. augmentation of real balsamic vinegar)
3 Tbsp. brown sugar.
1 Tbsp. butter.
1 Tbsp. finely chopped Parsley.

Cook carrots in boiling for 4-6 min. or until crisp- tender.
Meanwhile, cook dressing, sugar and butter in small saucepan on low heat for 3-4 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally.

Drain carrots, return to saucepan. Add sauce and stir. Cook 2-3 minutes until heated through and evenly coated with sauce.
Sprinkle with Parsley and serve.

Maple-Glazed Asparagus Bundles:

1 Large bunch Asparagus, 24 to 32 spears, trimmed.
1/2 Red Pepper, sliced into long thin strips.
8 Prosciutto Ham trimmed, 4oz.(125g.) thinly sliced.

1/3 cup (75 ml.)  Diana’s Sauce, (Maple flavour) OR real maple syrup
2 tsp coarsely cracked black pepper.
2 tsp lemon zest
1 tbsp each, lemon juice and melted butter.
Optional: 2tsp. Balsamic vinegar added to the  sauce for basting the bundles on the grille.

Blanch the Asparagus in boiling salted water for 3 minutes.

Rinse under cold water until cool.  Drain and pat dry.
Divide asparagus into 8 bundles (I use 3 per bundle).

Add a few red pepper strips per bundle.
Lay out a prosciutto slice, lightly cover with sauce or syrup and  add 1 proportion of Asparagus and red pepper strips.

Roll the prosciutto tightly around the trimmed based asparagus bundles base, secure with toothpick(s). Repeat.
Cover bundles with sauce. Prepare grille to med-high heat.
Grille bundles for 2 minutes turn and brush with remaining sauce or syrup.

Grille additional 2 minutes. Turn as needed until vegetables are marked and ham is lightly crisped.
Remove toothpicks to serve. Makes 8 servings.