Chocolate Pâté

This recipe was featured in the 2009 Napa Rose Cooking School at the Grand Californian Hotel at the Disneyland Resort.


Yield: 18 half-inch slices


  • 1 ounce unsalted butter, cut into pieces and let soften to room temperature
  • 1 pound good quality semi-sweet chocolate (I use Ghirardelli)
  • 1 pint heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon hazelnut liqueur (I use Frangelico)
  • Mint sprigs for garnish


  1. Chop chocolate into small pieces and put into a medium metal bowl with butter.
  2. Bring cream to a simmer, pour over the butter and chocolate and stir until everything is melted and smooth.
  3. In a mixing bowl combine hazelnut liqueur and cream. Whip to soft peaks and fold into the chocolate mixture.
  4. Line a loaf pan with plastic and pour in the mixture.
  5. Refrigerate overnight. Invert the loaf pan and use the plastic to remove the chocolate pâté. Slice into half inch slices and serve with a sprig of mint.



Picture Perfect Pizza Crust

This is the best pizza crust I’ve been able to achieve. The technique of cooking the bottom in a cast iron pan ensures that it is crispy and baked through. Finishing it under the broiler means the intense heat will char the crust and melt the cheese until it is golden an delicious.


This recipe is based on a recipe in Serious Eats and goes great with the Quick and Easy Tomato Sauce.
Continue reading

Quick and Easy Tomato Sauce

Homemade tomato sauce can be better than most anything you can buy in a store. It’s easy to make and since it uses canned tomatoes, you don’t have to worry about them being in season.

This recipe is based on a recipe by Mario Batali and is great on pizza.

Continue reading

Perfect Rice Recipe

I have a confession to make: I have not been very good about cooking rice. It either comes out watery, gummy or scorched. Those days are now over since I have found this recipe on the New York Times cooking site. I have made it many times and the rice comes out perfect every time.

Note: To get the lid on the pot to fit tightly, I take two lengths of aluminum foil, fold it a few times and wrap it around the lid of the pot before I put the cover on.

Continue reading

7-Up Glazed Carrots

Back in the 1970s there was a prime rib chain called Lord Charlie’s that had the best glazed carrots. I asked them how they cooked their carrots that made them taste so good. They told me the secret ingredient: 7-Up. More than 30 years later I found a recipe from Alton Brown for glazed carrots and was able to adapt it to recreate the Lord Charlie’s recipe.

Note: The easiest way to cut 1/4 slices of carrot is to use a food processor with the medium (6mm) slicing disk. If you don’t have a food processor, a mandolin will work.

Continue reading

Sauteed Brussels Sprouts with Bacon

We recently had dinner at Craft in Los Angeles and had the best side dish, roasted baby Brussels sprouts with bacon. When we found baby Brussels sprouts at our local Sprouts, I knew I had to try it. While mine wasn’t quite as good as the one at Craft’s it was close.


This recipe was adapted from a recipe in How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman.

Continue reading

Poached Scrambled Eggs

This is the easiest and quickest way to make perfectly soft scrambled eggs. They came out as good as when I make them the fussy French way (in a metal mixing bowl with melted butter over simmering water). Since they are poached in water instead of fried in butter, they are lower in fat and calories.

This recipe was adapted from a recipe by Daniel Patterson on the PBS show The Mind of a Chef.

Continue reading