I am having a some difficulty reorienting myself back into the heat and humidity of August after being in Bar Harbor Maine! What a difference. We were all wearing sweaters, and sleeping with the windows thrown open under woolly  L. L. Bean blankets. We ate way too much! But who could resist eating bisque and lobster and stews and popovers and blueberry pancakes.

Our vacation home, overlooking the harbor, had vistas of water and boats and piney mountains. Very unlike the rolling hills of high corn I see all around me here at StoneGable.

This week as I get back into life in Lancaster Pennsylvania I have a few goodies ON THE MENU that keep Maine  at the table and tugging at my heartstrings!

Perfect Roasted Chicken
Roasted Root Vegetables
Garden Caprese Towers

Recipe: Perfect Roasted Chicken
When I roast a chicken I always make 2! Some of the chicken will be saved for lunches and the rest  frozen for upcoming meals.
4-5 pound) roasting chicken
salt and pepper, kosher if possible
2 bunches  fresh thyme
1 bunch parsley
1 lemon, halved
1 head garlic, cut in half crosswise
3 sage leaves
1 stick unsalted butter
1/2 tsp lemon zest
1 tsp lemon juice
1 large yellow onion, peeled and sliced
16 baby carrots, or 4 large carrots, peeled and cut lengthwise and cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup chicken stock
olive oil
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees .

Compound Butter:
Put room temperature butter in a bowl. Add 2 finely minced garlic cloves and 1/2 tsp lemon zest to butter. Add lemon juice.
 Chop 2 TBS parsley, 1 tsp thyme and 1 small sage leaf and add to the bowl. Mix well.

Form butter into a ball. Reserve.
For Vegetables:
In a large bowl combine carrots, onions, 10 sprigs of thyme. 2 TBS chopped parsley, salt , pepper and olive oil. Toss. Reserve.
Remove giblet packet from chicken. Rinse chicken inside and out and pat-dry the outside of the chicken with a paper towel. Salt and pepper inside of chicken.

Stuff the chicken cavity with 1/2 of the garlic, 1/2 of the lemon, a handful of parsley, 6-8 sprigs of thyme, a fresh bay leaf and a sage leaf.
Separate the skin from the flesh of the chicken breast, making a pocket. Put 1 TBS compound butter under each breast. Press butter until evenly distributed. Using your fingers rub extra compound butter into the skin of the chicken.
Tie the legs and tuck the wings underneath the chicken. Put the chicken in a roasting pan. Salt and pepper the outside of  the chicken.
Place the veggies around the chickens and add 1/2 ~1 cup of chicken stock to the pan.
Roast for 1 1/2 hours until juices run clear.  Remove chicken to a platter along with the veggies and let rest for 15 minutes. Slice and serve with veggies. Remember to save the carcass for stock!
For a pictorial tutorial, click HERE.

Recipe: Caprese Towers
Now that tomato season is in full swing I am eating a tomatoes everyday. These wonderful bites of summer are even great  as a meal all by themselves! Click HERE for the recipe and how-to's.

Ceasar Salad With A Crab Cakes

Recipe: Crab Cakes
These are my most requested meal at StoneGable
1 lb lump crab meat
2 slices of fresh white bread, torn in pieces
2 TBS mayonnaise
1 tsp mustard
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
3 TBS melted butter
1  tsp dried parsley
1 egg, beaten

Put crab meat in a bowl and pick over for any shell or cartilage.  Add torn bread and toss. Add the rest of the ingredients and incorporate, being careful not to break up crab meat. Form into 5 large cakes.

Heat large oven proof skillet over medium high heat.  Add 1-2 TBS cooking oil, let heat.  Cook crab cakes in skillet for 5 minutes each side until golden brown.  Transfer skillet to oven and bake for 10 minutes.
Serve with tartar sauce. This is a delicious recipe!!!!!  I am requested to make this all the time.

Recipe: The Best Ceasar Salad Ever, Not Bragging~ Just Truth!
I have been making Ceasar salad for years! If you try one thing this week, make the homemade Ceasar dresssing. It is FABULOUS! Click HERE for a StoneGable tutorial.

Fresh Tomato Grilled Flatbread
Cucumber Salad

Recipe: Fresh Tomato Grilled Flatbread
homemade or store bought pizza dough
1 pkg. cream cheese softened
2/3 cup grated parmesan cheese, divided
1 TBS fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 TBS fresh chives. snipped
2 onions, cut in half and sliced
1 garlic clove
2 TBS olive oil
1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp fresh thyme, minced
3 large tomatoes, sliced (the flatbread is very pretty if you can get different varieties, red, yellow, etc)
fresh basil, cut in chiffonades
salt and pepper

In a large skillet heat 1 TBS olive over medium high heat. Add onions, lower heat to medium and cook until carmelized, about 20 minutes. Drizzle onions with balsamic vinegar and cook for 6 minutes longer on low until the liquids have been absorbed. Add fresh thyme and set aside.
In a large bowl combine cream cheese, 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese. parsley and chives. Beat until blended.

Preheat grill to medium high.

Roll out pizza dough into a 12 x 6 rectangle. Brush each side with olive oil. Place pizza on grill and grill covered for about 2 minutes, until the bottom is lightly browned.

Flip. Spread grilled side with cheese mixture and sprinkle the remaining Parmesan cheese over the cheese mixtures.  Cover that cheese with the onion mixture and layer tomatoes over the top. Cover and grill for 2-3 minutes until cheese is melted and the pizza is slightly charred.
Drizzle with a little extra olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and fresh cracked pepper. Sprinkle with basil.
Printable Recipe

Zucchini Carbonara With Fresh Thyme

Recipe: Zucchini Carbonara With Fresh Thyme
One of my go-to blogs is Savoring Time In The Kitchen. Everything Susan makes I want to make too! This recipe is so seasonally appropriate and fresh. Filled with veggie flavor and creamy deliciousness! To get this summery recipe click HERE.

FRIDAY: Soup Day ~Yes, I know it's August

I still have Bar Harbor on my mind! We ate some of the most luscious pier-to-plate lobster while we were away. I also had the most delicious lobster bisque at  the Parkside in Bar Harbor while spending a girl's day of shopping and lunch with my daughter and son's sweetheart. Perfect day... in spite of the rain!
Another real favorite were the popovers at the Jordan Pond House. Apparently, they are world famous~ no wonder!  Today's menu recreates some of the best things we ate while in Maine!
Blueberry Iced Tea
Lobster Bisque
Grilled Vegetables

Recipe: Lobster Bisque
See this weeks' Foodie Friday post

Recipe: Jordan Pond Popovers
The kind Maine folks at The famous Jordan Pond House in Arcadia National Park gave me this great and easy recipe! We all voted this one of the "best foods" we ate while on vacation. Look for it on Foodie Friday!

I am pulling out my very old, but loved, recipes and making them for a few long time friends!
Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Dates
Salmon With Creamy Pasta And Peas
Arugula And Bleu Cheese, In a Champagne Vinaigrette
Raspberry Tiramisu

Recipe: Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Dates
These are addictive! When I serve them there is never one left!
large pitted dates
bacon, good quality
almonds, whole roasted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Stuff an almond in the pit cavity of a date. Cut each slice of bacon in half or thirds and wrap a piece around the equator of the date. Secure with a toothpick. (The dates can be made up to this point, put in a zip style bag and kept in the refrigerator for a day)

Bake, in a single layer, on a large baking sheet for 15 minutes, or until bacon is done, but not too brown. Watch these! They go from done to burnt quickly. 
* These little treats are HOT! Let them sit a few minutes until serving.

Recipe: Salmon With Creamy Pasta, Peas And Mushrooms
This is an old well loved favorite. Easy and company worthy! The recipe has been adapted from one of my earliest cookbooks, Heart Of The Home by Susan Branch. She has a marvelous and whimsical blog worth checking out! Click HERE.  

And yes, I said peas! I'll be picking every one out! 
8-12 oz. cooked salmon, flaked
1 TBS good olive oil
1 TBS butter
8 oz. mixed mushroom blend, or any mushrooms~ cleaned,  and sliced
3/4 cup dry white wine
4 TBSP shallots, minced
1 1/4 cup heavy cream
8 oz. wide fettuccine noodles, cook and drained according to package directions~ reserve 1/2 cup pasta liquid
3/4 cup peas, cooked
2 TBS parsley, finely chopped
4 TBS pine nuts, toasted
1/2 cup freshly shaved Parmesan cheese

Toast pine nuts in a large, dry skillet until lightly browned. Keep an eye on these, they will burn quickly. Set aside.
Heat oil and butter, until butter is melted. Add mushrooms and cook until liquids are released and have evaporated and mushrooms are slightly golden. Set aside
Cook peas and set aside.
Put wine and shallots in the skillet and bring to a slow boil, scraping up any brown bits. Let wine reduce by 1 TBS. Add heavy cream and simmer for a couple of minutes.

Add drained pasta to skillet along with salmon, mushrooms, pine nuts and peas. Toss and heat. If needed all a little pasta water to loosen the sauce add just a little at a time. 
Plate and shave Parmesan cheese over pasta. Sprinkle with parsley.

Killer Fajitas
Refried Beans

Recipe: Killer Fajitas
I am using the leftover chicken from earlier this week.
2-3 large onions
2-4 peppers, assorted colors
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
olive oil
salt and pepper
2-3 heaping TBS jalapeno red pepper jelly
lime juice from 1 lime
flour tortillas
refried beans
2 cups GOOD cheddar cheese, grated
toppings and fixins'
Preheat grill.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Peel onions. Cut in half from end to end. Cut halves into half moons. Put a toothpick through the half BEFORE you slice it. Toothpicks should be through the half moons and hold the onions together. Continue until you have cut all onions.
Put onions on a rimmed baking sheet. Brush olive oil over both sides of the onions.
Grill on medium heat until charred (we like them well charred). Sprinkle with salt.
Remove toothpicks and set aside.
Cut peppers into quarters and pull out seeds. Place them on a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Grill.
Grill until skin of pepper is blackened. Remove from the grill and peel off char. Slice into strips and set aside.
Place chicken on rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper. Grill on medium high until done through. Remove from grill. Let sit for 10 minutes and slice on the diagonal.
If your grill is large enough, the veggies and chicken can be cooked at the same time.
While the veggies cook, Put a large can (or 2) of refried beans in an ovenproof bowl and sprinkle with 1/2 cup cheddar cheese. Heat for 30 minutes in the oven.
Add the veggies and chicken to a large skillet. Heat over a medium heat. Add 2 or 3 HEAPING TBS of red pepper jelly. This pepper jelly is NOT hot. And don't use green pepper jelly. It looks horrid! If you use a hot jalapeno pepper jelly, adjust the amount according to how hot you like it... go easy!
When heated through, turn off heat and squeeze a lime over the mixture. OH, YUMMY!!!!!
Printable Recipe


I can't wait to see all of your delicious dishes. Thank you for joining ON THE MENU MONDAY! 

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