Chilled Mussels with Onion

black seashell beside beige stone

Photo by Pixabay on

Just back from a spell in Peru and a special time in Cusco with the twin grandgirls, after climbing Machu Picchu and scrambling through even more spectacular ruins in the Sacred Valley.  Don’t miss the train through the valley and skip the village that has dozens of restaurants devoted to culinary excesses using the guinea pig.  Here is something better,  a novel presentation of mussels we still rave about that we discovered in Lima. 

  • 18 mussels
  • three limes
  • three red onions, minced
  • two cloves of garlic, crushed and minced
  • two tomatoes, finely minced
  • one cob of grilled corn, kernels removed
  • one rocoto, or a poblano pepper, diced
  • three teaspoon of chopped parsley
  • olive oil, sea salt, and freshly ground black pepper

Steam the mussels in salt water, shuck, and remove from shells.  Return each mussel to a half shell.  Mix remaining ingredients with oil, salt, and pepper to taste.  Pile a full tablespoon on each mussel and chill until serving.


Stuffed Baby Med Peppers

We have always loved to add pepperoncini to our Greek salads.  On our last visit to Rhodes we were served these simple but satisfying pre-prandial bites at a little sidewalk cafe near the gate to the port.  These pickled peppers, which are just as popular in Italian dishes, are so easily available in the United States and so overlooked when we think of savory appetizers.  Our chef simply soaked them for a time in icy water, slit them open, and filled each pepper with an equal amount of local cheese, what tasted like minced salami, and a generous helping of grated onion.  Dust this with Greek seasoning, squeeze a little lemon juice over all and warm in a 300 degree oven for ten minutes.  You may substitute minced, crispy bacon and Monterey Jack for a departure. 

Neighbor Nancy’s Cheesy Stuff

Don’t know how to describe this…is it a dip?  Is it a spread?  Is it an entree?  It really doesn’t matter once you taste it.  Just take my word for it and whip this up for your next gathering.

  • 8 ounces of old dependable cream cheese
  • 2 cups of shredded cheddar or whatever you have
  • 1 half cup of mayonnaise
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 dozen well-crumbled ginger snaps
  • 1 half cup of pepper jelly
  • 1 shot of rum

Combine first four and mix well.  Spread on a stoneware serving platter.  Sprinkle ginger snaps on top and bake at 350 for ten minutes.  Meanwhile, combine pepper jelly with an ounce of rum  in a pyrex cup and warm in a microwave.  Stir well and pour over cheese mixture, fresh from the oven.   Serve with your favorite crackers or more ginger snaps.

Happy New Year

We wish you a successful and properous New Year. 

May each of us have an opportunity to challenge

our palates, experience new sensations, and explore

new worlds.  Yet, we remember that the things we

hold most dear are a loving family and old friends. 

May God bless each of you.

We wish you the merriest of Christmases…

…the happiest of New Years, and in the

immortal words of Tiny Tim, “God bless

us, everyone!” Thank you for your kind

comments, the thousands of hits, and

your loyal following.



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