Thursday, July 9, 2009

Today was the first of four classes I am teaching at ARTichokes on how to write/compile a cookbook using your family's heirloom recipes. The class is small due to vacations, but it allowed us to go on a field trip today! I didn't have a yellow school bus for transportation, but we got to our destination anyway!

Archivers at 119th and Metcalf, is my go-to store when I need really unusual, elegant or theme-related paper for my cookbooks. The papers are wonderful and the employees are extremely helpful. We looked at everything and I could see ideas cooking in my student's minds.

Next week we will start compiling our recipes and planning the design of the books! There are going to be some very special Christmas presents under the their trees!

I have added a new favorite blog of mine, hope you check it out! It is written by Maria Johnson, a beautiful young woman and artist from Colombia, South America. She lives here in Johnson County, Kansas with her husband and paints with me as a member of the "Somerset Painters". Check out her blog by going to She is so fun, I know you will love reading her blog!

Speaking of painting....

I really want to go paint Wea Creek....but I must admit, I worry about snakes! Worry may not be the right word....maybe FEAR SNAKES would be closer! I'm thinking maybe the creek will be pretty in the fall, late fall, maybe even winter when there is ice on the old creek! God, I hate snakes! But I sure do like that creek!

Went to Loch Lloyd last night to watch my beautiful granddaughter, Ali, swim in a meet against the club from Deer Creek. She took three 1st place, one 2nd place and one 3rd place! Next week her team goes up against my youngest granddaughter, Zoe's team! Thank goodness they are in different age groups!

Do you like Piquillo peppers? They are a speciality of a region in Spain known as Navarra. They are roasted over wood fires and then peeled by hand. They pack them by hand into jars. The name piquillo means "little beak" because they are small and triangular in shape, which makes them perfect for stuffing. The piquillo is not spicy or hot, but rather it has a rich sweetness. They are traditionally stuffed with blood sausage or salt cod, but I prefer to serve them with different cheese stuffings. You can serve them warmed in a skillet, or at room temperature. Here in Kansas City, some grocery stores and deli departments have them available either in the salad bar or with their selection of olives. If you haven't tried them, you should.

Grilled bacon wrapped shrimp and cheese stuffed piquillos are a great combination for quick appetizers. The shrimp can be cleaned and wrapped with the bacon and refrigerated until ready to toss on the grill. The peppers can be stuffed several hours in advance. Mix up some ice cold sangria and you have yourself a party!

Cheese-Stuffed Piquillo Peppers

I can't give you amounts for this, just buy as many peppers as you will need. I love these stuffed with Boursin cheese, available in most cheese departments. The peppers I buy are already seeded, so all I do is blot some of the liquid from the inside of each. I prefer to put the cheese in a pastry bag with a tube with a large opening. I simply pipe the boursin into the top of the peppers, arrange on a serving tray and loosely cover with plastic wrap.

1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. onion powder

1/2 tsp. lemon pepper

1 tsp. granulated garlic

1 tbsp. Lea & Perrins

2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

4 tbsp. butter, melted

9 slices bacon

18 jumbo shrimp, shelled and deveined

Cut the slices of bacon in half. Partially cook the bacon over moderate heat to render some of the fat without allowing the pieces to crisp. Combine butter with spices, add shrimp, toss well to coat, let marinate at room temperature 30 to 60 minutes. Remove shrimp from the marinade, reserving the marinade. Wrap a slice of bacon around each shrimp and secure with a toothpick to hold both ends of the bacon. Place shrimp on hot grill for 4 minutes; turn and brush shrimp with reserved marinade and grill for 4 minutes longer or until shrimp are opaque throughout.

You know, of course, how I make my Sangria....!

1 bottle Somerset Ridge Buffalo Blush Wine

2 sliced fresh peaches

2 cups cleaned strawberries

1 large orange, sliced

1 lime sliced

1/2 cup Grand Marnier

1 can club soda, chilled

Prepare the fruit and place in a large clear glass pitcher. Pour the wine over the fruit and let stand in the refrigerator for several hours. Just before serving, add Grand mMrnier and the can of club soda. If you prefer a sweeter sangria, you may choose to add a can of ginger ale in place of the club soda.

Have a fun party!

1 comment:

Karena said...

Kay, I loved seeing your painting today at ARTichokes. I Love your work and am so thrilled that you are teaching a class!!

Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy

Ponte Vecchio, Florence, Italy
oil painting by Kay Tucker

Somerset Autumn on Wea Creek

Somerset Autumn on Wea Creek
Oil Painting by Kay Tucker, Private Collection


oil painting by Kay Tucker

Kansas Storm

Kansas Storm
oil painting by Kay Tucker, Private Collection

Watercolor Collage

Watercolor Collage

Tempo al Tempo....All in Good Time

Tempo al Tempo....All in Good Time
48"x36" sculptural painting by Kay Tucker