Starts Saturday August 3 8/7c

Summer Recipes

Southern Tea Cakes
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Southern Tea Cakes
Southern Tea Cakes
Prep Time: 2+ hrs., Cook Time: 18-20 mins.
  • 4 C Flour
  • 2 C Sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 C Unsalted Butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 C milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp of lemon extract
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest


  1. These are soft, warm, tender pieces of your past. They aren’t sweet like a sugar cookie. They are the perfect amount of sweetness to encourage you to eat three or four in one sitting. The middle is always soft and the edges never brown.
  2. Cream together butter and sugar.
  3. Add in the eggs one at a time. Stir in the vanilla and lemon extract as well as the lemon zest.
  4. Stir in the milk.
  5. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Add that to the wet ingredients in increments. The dough will be stickier than traditional cookie dough. DON’T FRET!
  6. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Chill the dough for at least two hours. If you don’t, the cookies will melt into a glob in the oven.
  7. Bake for 18-20 minutes. When you remove them from the oven they will look slightly underdone and smooth on the top. Let them cool on a baking rack if available.
Grilled Lamb and Eggplant Kabobs on Rosemary Skewers
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Grilled Lamb and Eggplant Kabobs on Rosemary Skewers
Grilled Lamb and Eggplant Kabobs on Rosemary Skewers
Main Dish
Serves 4
  • 8 rosemary stems
  • 8 ounces boneless lamb top round or lamb loin, cut in 1-inch cubes
  • 1 Japanese eggplant, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • Coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 lemon
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Mint and Parsley Salsa Verde (recipe follows)

Mint and Parsley Salsa Verde:

  • ½ cup fresh mint leaves
  • ½ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 6 anchovy fillets
  • 2 tablespoon drained capers
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • ¼ garlic clove
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Coarse sea salt


NOTE: Rosemary has been shown to increase blood circulation to the brain and to contain anti-inflammatory immune system support compounds. Plus, it’s piney aroma pairs really well with lamb. That’s why I use the stems to skewer the meat and eggplant and the leaves to season the duo. On the grill, everything takes on a smoky, fragrant richness.

Serves 4

  1. Heat a grill to medium-high.
  2. Strip the leaves off the rosemary stems, leaving only the leaves at the tops. Coarsely chop the plucked leaves.
  3. Season the lamb and eggplant all over with salt and pepper. Zest the lemon directly on top and sprinkle with the rosemary. Drizzle with olive oil and toss until evenly coated. Skewer the lamb and eggplant onto the rosemary stems, alternating the pieces.
  4. Grill until nicely browned, about 2 minutes per side for medium-rare. Let rest for a few minutes before slicing and serving with the salsa verde.


  1. In a food processor, combine the mint, parsley, anchovies, capers, pine nuts, lemon zest, garlic and red pepper flakes and pulse until finely chopped.
  2. With the machine running, add the olive oil in a slow, steady stream. Process until smooth. Season with salt.
Red Velvet Whoopie Pies
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Red Velvet Whoopie Pies


  • 1 package Red Velvet cake mix, use your favorite brand (I prefer Betty Crocker)
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbs cocoa powder
  • 1 cup of buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup of oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Ingredients for Filling

  • 1, 8oz package of cream cheese, room temperature
  • 4 sticks of salted butter, room temperature
  • 1 lb of confectioners’ sugar/powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1, 7oz container of marshmallow (Fluff)

Ingredients for Simple Meringue Buttercream

  • 1/2 cup pasteurized egg whites
  • 1 lb powdered sugar
  • 2 lbs butter, room temp
  • 2 tbs vanilla

Makes 24

Preheat oven to 350
Prepare baking sheets with parchment and spray with a cooking spray

This recipe starts off with a basic red velvet box mix, making it an easy recipe for all to follow.

1. Place dry ingredients into a mixing bowl and whisk together until combined and there are no lumps.

2. Add in your liquid ingredients into your dry ingredients and beat together until well combine but do not over mix…. about 1 to 2 minutes on a medium to slow speed.

3. Using an ice cream/cookie scoop (this creates even whoopee bases), scoop your batter onto parchment lined cookie sheet, making sure you leave enough room for spread, about 2” apart.

4. Bake for about 10 minutes at 350 degrees check for doneness. either using a toothpick or by touch the little cakes so be cooked through but not over baked. (it may need a total of 15 minutes).

5. Remove from oven let settle for one minute then place little cake bases onto a cooling rack until completely cooled.

Top Tips:
*scoop any even amount of the little cake bases as these well be sandwiched together to create the whoopie pies.
*Make filling first so it has time to firm up a bit before piping into the centers.

They are a couple of different directions you can go with the filling some use buttercream and some use a marshmallow cream. Since these are a red velvet whoopie I have chosen to do a combination and add cream cheese into the mix.

1 recipe of Simple Meringue Buttercream, this is used to firm up consistency if needed

1. In a mixing bowl beat the cream cheese until soft, then add in the butter to combine.

2. Add in sifted powder sugar, beat until combined.

3. Add in Marshmallow, beat until combined.

4. Store in refrigerator until ready to use, this allows for the filling to set up a bit.

5. If filling seems to soft you can fold in small amounts of the Simple Meringue Buttercream to firm up the filling.

Piping or Scoop filling onto the baked side (the flat side) of one cake bases and then sandwich another on top.

The size scoop you use will determine the amount of whoopsies pies you will be able to create.

Filling alternative if you choose to go the all buttercream route….

1. Using a stand mixer, combine pasteurized egg whites and powdered into mixing bowl, beat with a paddle for 4 minutes.

2. Scrape down the sides. Now add in room temperature butter all at once and beat with the paddle for 10 minutes, or until light and fluffy.

Cranberry Chicken Salad with Blue Cheese & Chives
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Cranberry Chicken Salad with Blue Cheese & Chives
Cranberry Chicken Salad with Blue Cheese & Chives
Serves 8
  • 2.5 pounds Roasted Shredded Chicken
  • 1 Cup Maytag Blue Cheese Crumbled (Reserve some for garnish)
  • 2 ¼ Cups Best Foods Mayonnaise (to taste depending on how you like it)
  • 1 Cup Dried Cranberry’s Plumped (Cook the cranberries in 2 cups of apple juice for 10 min then drain and cool completely discard apple juice or drink it it’s pretty delicious) (Reserve some for garnish)
  • ½ Cup Chopped Chives (reserve some for garnish)
  • ½ Cup Minced Celery
  • 2 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Juice of half a Lemon
  • 4 Heads Boston Bibb Lettuce core removed and Leaves Shingled
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 2 Radishes sliced paper thin and held in water for Garnish


  • 1 (5 to 6 pound) Roasting Chicken
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large bunch fresh Thyme
  • 1 Lemon, halved
  • 2 Stalks Celery large diced
  • 1 head Garlic, cut in half crosswise
  • 3 Large Carrots cut into thick rounds
  • 1 large Yellow Onion, diced
  • 5 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil


  1. Place all ingredients into a bowl except for the bibb lettuce.
  2. Incorporate all ingredients together thoroughly.
  3. Arrange your bibb lettuce into shingled portions of leaves a top each other for up to 8 people.
  4. Scoop a very generous amount of Chicken Salad a top each portion of lettuce.
  5. Garnish with Blue Cheese, Cranberries, Chives and Radish.

Roasted Chicken:

Yields 2.5 pounds Meat

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Rub your olive oil all over the chicken inside, outside and under the skin.
  3. Then very generously salt and pepper your chicken inside and out.
  4. Stuff the cavity with Lemon, Thyme, Garlic, Onion, Carrot and Celery.
  5. Place in a roasting pan with wings tucked behind its back as to not burn.
  6. Roast the chicken for 1 1/2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and thigh or until an internal temp of 165 degrees.
  7. Let rest at room temp for 25 min then place in fridge and allow to cool completely before cutting up.
  8. Once cool pull all meat from the bones and do a very quick ruff chop of the chicken so you still leave semi big chunks.
Summer Bucatini Pasta, Ricotta, Basil and Zucchini
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Summer Bucatini Pasta, Ricotta, Basil and Zucchini
Summer Bucatini Pasta, Ricotta, Basil and Zucchini
Lunch, Dinner, Main
Seasonal Event:
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 2 pounds zucchini, sliced into 1/4-inch-thick pieces (for larger zucchini, cut in half lengthwise before slicing)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups basil, loose leaves (stems removed)
  • 1 pound bucatini or other dry pasta
  • 8 ounces ricotta (good quality)
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 3 ounces grated Parmesan, plus more for serving
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter


  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, cook the onions in 3 tablespoons olive oil until softened, 5 to 8 minutes. Do not brown the onions.
  2. Add zucchini, season generously with salt and pepper, cook for about 10 minutes. Turn off heat.
  3. Use a mortar and pestle to pound garlic, basil and a little salt into a rough paste (or use a mini food processor). Stir in 3 tablespoons olive oil.
  4. Add 2 tablespoons salt to the water. Cook pasta according to packaging instructions to bring to Al dente. Keep 1 cup of liquid.
  5. Add cooked pasta to the zucchini skillet and turn heat to medium. Add 1/2 cup cooking water, then the ricotta, crushed red pepper and lemon zest, stirring to combine well. Cook for about 1 minute more.
  6. Add the basil paste and half the grated cheese and quickly stir. Spoon pasta into warm bowls and sprinkle with more parmesan cheese.
  7. Serve.
Grilled Peach Cake Stack
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Grilled Peach Cake Stack


  • 3 medium peaches
  • 1 Sara Lee pound cake, thawed
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • cinnamon for sprinkling
  • optional: whipped cream, ice cream, basil


1. Start off by creating peach rings. Use your knife to slowly cut around the peach “hamburger” style. Use your fingers to gently detach the peach from the seed.
2. Cut all the peaches, except leave half of one.
3. Then, horizontally slice your pound cake into 3 layers, or even 6 layers.
4. Then, use your largest peach ring as a template and trace out a circle from your pound cake.
5. Repeat until you have no more pound cake. You can also use a similarly sized cookie cutter if you don’t want to trace out manually.
6. On a BBQ grill, or a grill pan, gently grill your cake on low to medium heat until those grill marks appear, about 2 minutes each side.
7. Repeat with the peach rings, which will take longer (about 5 minutes per side).
8. Then, alternately layer your cake and peach rings, sprinkling cinnamon on top of the peach rings.
9. Finally, create the peach compote by chopping up your remaining half peach. In a small saucepan, add in the chopped peaches and sugar and heat until the sugar is caramelized, about 5 minutes.
10. Finish by topping the cakes with the peach compote.
11. Now, add optional toppings such as whipped cream, ice cream, or shredded basil.

Cedar Plank Grilled Mustard Salmon
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Cedar Plank Grilled Mustard Salmon
Cedar Plank Grilled Mustard Salmon
Dinner, Main
  • One 2lbs half of a salmon side, skin off
  • 1 Tbsp whole grain mustard
  • 1 Tbsp sriracha hot sauce
  • 2 Tbsp kewpie mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar
  • Garnish with chives
  • 3 red onions, peeled, cut into quarters, keeping root intact
  • 2 bunches asparagus, trimmed
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt


  1. Heat up the grill on high for direct heat.
  2. Soak your plank for at least 1 hour (or longer, you cannot oversoak it) to avoid it from catching fire. Make sure it is weighed down with a plate and fully submerged and flip it half way. Tip, You can also soak your plank in apple juice, beer, or wine to add more flavor to the fish.
  3. The darker the color of the cedar the better the flavor.
  4. Place the salmon on the soaked plank and season with kosher salt liberally.
  5. In a small bowl, mix together the mustard, sriracha, mayonnaise, and brown sugar. Spread evenly over the salmon.
  6. In a large deep dish, toss the asparagus and onions in the olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
  7. Brush an area on the grill lightly with oil. Place the onions and asparagus on the oiled grates. Cook for about 3-4 minutes turning halfway until lightly charred and just tender. Remove from heat and keep warm. Place the salmon plank on the grill and cover with lid. Cook the salmon for 10-15 mins, or until 130-135 F degrees on a thermometer. Let rest for about 3-4 minutes. Place the plank on a large tray and serve alongside with the grilled vegetables.
Italian Baked Clams with Linguini
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Italian Baked Clams with Linguini
Italian Baked Clams with Linguini
Dinner, Main Dish
  • 12 large quahog clams
  • 1 bottle of dry white wine
  • 6 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 3 shallots chopped
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 cup Pecorino Romano
  • 1 stalk celery diced
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 2-3 Tbsp, reserved, clam juice
  • Paprika
  • 8 oz. cooked linguini noodles
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced (OPTIONAL)
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp. chopped parsley plus more for garnish


  1. Fill a large pot with 2-3 inches of white wine and the sliced garlic. Bring to a simmer.
  2. Add the clams to the simmering wine and steam until the shells open. About 6-10 minutes.
  3. Remove clams from the pot and let cool enough to handle. Reserve the steaming liquid and clam juice.
  4. Discard any clams that have not opened (If they don’t open, they may be dead don’t eat them).
  5. Remove the clams from the shells and chop.
  6. Break apart the clamshells.
  7. Pick about 12 of the nicest shells and clean them, getting them ready for the stuffing.
  8. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  9. In a fry pan, melt the butter on medium heat and add the shallots and celery.
  10. Once the onions and celery have softened about 2-3 minutes, add the minced garlic.
  11. Cook garlic for 1 minute, then add the cheese, parsley, breadcrumbs, chopped clams, lemon juice, and reserved clam juice. Stir until the stuffing mixture is completely moistened.
  12. If too dry, add a little more clam juice; if too wet, add a little more breadcrumbs.
  13. Fill the cleaned clamshells and place them on a baking dish.
  14. Scoop a little stuffing mixture onto each clamshell.
  15. Sprinkle with Paprika.
  16. Bake for approximately 20-25 minutes.
  17. Strain 2 cups of the steaming liquid in a deep pan and bring to a simmer for 2 minutes.
  18. Add in the additional 2 cloves of sliced garlic (OPTIONAL).
  19. Remove the liquid from the heat and whisk in the butter until incorporated and then stir in 2 tbsp. of chopped parsley.
  20. Toss the linguini into the sauce to coat and serve alongside the stuffed clams.
Peach Streusel Ice Cream Sandwiches
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Peach Streusel Ice Cream Sandwiches

Ingredients for the Ice Cream

  • 4 ounces butter
  • 3 cups half and half
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1/2 cup caramelized peaches (recipe below)
  • 6 tablespoons cinnamon streusel (recipe below)

Ingredients for the Caramelized Peaches

  • 3 semi-hard peaches (about 1 day away from being perfectly ripe)
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 cup white sugar

Ingredients for the Cinnamon Streusel

  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 ounces cold butter
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Ingredients for the Sugar Cookies

  • 1 cup unsalted butter (at room temp but NOT melted)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2, 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2, 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder


  1. For the Ice Cream: Place the butter in a small saucepan and simmer until the butter turns golden brown. Remove from heat before browning too much and let the butter cool completely.
  2. In another larger saucepan, heat the half and half over medium high heat.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the yolks, white and brown sugars and salt until smooth.
  4. Temper the mixture by adding 1/2 cup of the warmed half and half to the egg mixture and stir together. Add another 1/2 cup of the half and half to the egg mixture and stir together while tempering the egg. Transfer the entire egg mixture into the remaining half and half in the saucepan and stir over medium heat until a thick mixture has formed. The mixture should be 170 degrees F when it's done. Remove the saucepan from the heat and whisk in the seeds from the vanilla bean as well as the browned butter mixture. Let the mixture sit for about 1 hour to infused all the flavor and then strain through a mesh sieve. Discard anything that didn't make it through the mesh sieve and refrigerate the mixture until chilled.
  5. Once the mixture is cold, put it into your ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturers directions.
  6. Once fully churned, stir in the streusel and caramelized peaches and freeze for at least 2 hours before serving.
  7. For the Caramelized Peaches:Cut the peaches into bite sized pieces and discard the pit. I left the skin on for extra flavor and color. Place the peaches into a sauce pan with the lemon juice and white sugar. Heat the sauce pan over medium heat until the peaches start to cook. Cook the peaches for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently and then remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
  8. For Cinnamon Streusel:Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  9. In a food processor, combine the flour, butter, sugar and cinnamon and pulse for a few seconds to break up the butter. Place the mixture on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 7-10 minutes.
  10. Remove the streusel from the oven and let cool. Once cooled, break it into bite sized pieces if needed and use as needed.


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Cream together the butter and sugars in a mixer. Add the eggs and vanilla, making sure to scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl. Add the flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder and mix on low until everything is incorporated.
  3. Chill the dough in the refrigerate for 2 hours. Scoop out some dough, and roll it into a ball. It should be about the size of a golf ball.
  4. Place the cookie on a parchment lined baking sheet. Place 6 cookies on a sheet since they will spread due to their size.
  5. Bake for 14-15 minutes until just slightly golden around the edges. Remove from oven and let rest on the baking sheet. If you want to flatten them out a big, carefully bang the baking sheet on the counter to release any excess air in the cookies.

Note: They might look a little under baked in the middle - but don't fear!! They will continue to bake a bit once removed from the oven.

Seared Wild Salmon with Fried Potato and Artichoke Hash
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Seared Wild Salmon with Fried Potato and Artichoke Hash
Seared Wild Salmon with Fried Potato and Artichoke Hash
4 servings

Meyer Lemon

  • Meyer Lemon
  • 4 T. EVOO

Meyer Lemon Caper Relish

  • 4 ea. Meyer Lemon, Segmented and cut into 3rds
  • Shallot (fine diced)
  • 2 t. Chopped Thyme Leaves
  • 2 T. Chives (Minced)
  • ½ C. Yellow Celery Hearts Thinly Sliced
  • 1 C. EVOO
  • ½ C. Blend Oil
  • ¼ t Chili Flakes
  • 5 Ea. Anchovy Diced
  • 1 Ea. Small Red Bell Pepper Brunoise
  • 3 T. Rough Chopped Capers
  • Black Pepper

Salmon and Potato

  • 3 T. Grapeseed Oil or Canola
  • 4 Ea. 7 Oz Wild Salmon Filet, Skin on, Pin Bones Removed
  • 6 oz Artichoke Heart Lg Dice (par cooked)
  • 8 oz Fingerling Potatoes Cut into ¼ in Rounds (par cooked)
  • 2 oz Scallion, Sliced
  • 6 oz Stock, Lobster, Vegetable or Chicken
  • 8 oz Blue Lake Beans, Blanched and warmed in 1 T butter
  • 3 T. Butter
  • 2 ea Thyme sprig and peeled garlic clove
  • Juice of ½ lemon


Recipe Courtesy Chef Govind Armstrong –
Serves 4


  1. Cut the ends off the lemon and use a vegetable peeler to carefully peel the zest from end to end.
  2. With a paring knife remove any remaining white pith.
  3. Thinly slice the zest horizontally and place the zest in a small pot with the extra virgin oil and steep on low for 30 minutes until softened.
  4. Set aside and allow to cool.


  1. Place all items in a mixing bowl, stir in poached zest and seasoned EVOO.
  2. Add a few turns of a pepper mill.
  3. Store in the refrigerator.


  1. Begin by cooking the salmon.
  2. Season fish with salt and pepper, warm 1 ½ T oil to medium high heat and place fish flesh side down and cook for 1 minute. Gently turn salmon skin side down and cook for an additional 3 minutes. While the salmon is cooking you can start the hash.
  3. Over a medium high heat add 1 ½ T. of the remaining oil to a large saute pan. Add potatoes, artichoke hearts and pan fry until golden about 2 minutes and lightly season with salt and pepper. Deglaze the pan with the stock reduce by half and swirl in 1 T. of butter. Adjust the seasoning with salt, pepper & lemon juice, then stir in scallion.
  4. For the last minute of cook time for the salmon add butter, thyme sprig & garlic. Baste the salmon for 1 minute, reduce heat if your pan appears to be too hot. Turn range off and gently flip salmon to flesh side and begin to plate.
  5. Season green beans with salt & pepper, and place at 9 o’clock on your plate. Spoon hash in the center, straddle salmon, skin side up on beans and hash. Drizzle the plate with lemon relish and serve up the smiles!
Summer Party Dips
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Summer Party Dips

Ingredients for Cotija and Corn Guacamole

  • Avocado oil
  • 1 ear corn
  • 4 ripe avocados
  • ½ red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tomato, diced (about ½ cup)
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • ¼ cup crumbled cotija cheese
  • Sprinkle of salt & pepper

Ingredients for Homemade Blender Salsa

  • 3lbs roma tomatoes
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • ½ cup cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar, honey or maple syrup
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Ingredients for Spicy Chipotle Hummus

  • 1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
  • 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
  • ¼ cup EVOO
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon chipotle chili (or less if you’re not into spice)
  • 2 tablespoons water, more if desired


1. Heat your grill on high for 5 minutes then turn down heat to medium

2. Spray the corn with avocado oil & grill on high for about 5 minutes, turning every couple of minutes

3. Transfer to a cutting board & cut off the kernels

4. In a large bowl, combine the corn kernels, avocados (make sure they are perfectly ripe avocados), onion, tomato, lime juice, cilantro, crumbled cotija, salt & pepper

5. Use 2 butter knives to criss-cross cut the avocado, turning the bowl to cut it into chunks

6. This will keep the avocado chunky but still combine everything together

7. Transfer to a serving bowl & top with any extra corn kernels, some crumbled cotija & some cilantro

1. Preheat oven to 400F

2. Slice the tomatoes in half lengthwise & place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper

3. Roast for 15 minutes

4. Remove from the oven & allow the tomatoes to sit on the baking sheet & come to room temperature, about 20 minutes

5. Place the tomatoes onion, chipotle pepper, garlic cilantro, agave, lime juice, & salt in your blender

6. Blend for about 20 seconds or until the salsa has reached your desired consistency. I like mine kind of liquid-y, but still with a good amount of chunks

7. Serve with tortilla chips & store in the fridge

1. Put all ingredients in food processor, except water

2. Process & use a rubber spatula to scrape down the sides

3. Add the water (one tablespoon at a time) until desired consistency

Tropical Smoothie Bowl
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Tropical Smoothie Bowl
Tropical Smoothie Bowl
Breakfast, Smoothie
Serves 1 to 2
Toni Okamoto shows you how to blend up the perfect summer breakfast.
  • 2 cups frozen mango chunks
  • ½ cup frozen pineapple chunks
  • 1 frozen banana
  • ½–1 cup plant-based milk
  • 2 tablespoons chopped nuts of your choice
  • ¼ cup chopped fruit of your choice

Optional Toppings

  • 1 tablespoon flaxseed meal
  • 1½ tablespoons coconut shreds

Ingredients for Green Banana Smoothie Bowl

  • 3 large or 4 small frozen bananas
  • 1 ½ cups of spinach
  • ½ – 1 cup plant-based milk
  • 2 tablespoons of your favorite
  • granola
  • 2 sliced strawberries
  • Handful of blueberries

from Plant-Based on a Budget by Toni Okamoto (BenBella Books, 2019)

NOTE: It took me a long time to jump on the smoothie bowl bandwagon, but my dear friend Michelle Cehn from the blog World of Vegan has got me hooked. Smoothie bowls provide texture and substance that make smoothies feel more like a proper breakfast. Plus, they’re always a hit on Instagram!

1. Add the mango, pineapple, banana, and milk (1 cup makes it a thinner smoothie and ½ cup makes it thicker) to a blender and blend until smooth.

2. Pour the smoothie into a bowl and top with the nuts and fruit.

1. Add frozen bananas, spinach, and milk (1 cup makes it a thinner smoothie and ½ cup makes it thicker) to a blender and blend until smooth.

2. Pour the smoothie into a bowl.

3. and top with the nuts and fruit.

NOTE ON FREEZING BANANAS: When your bananas are ripe (the browner, the better), peel them, thinly slice them, and put them in a freezer bag or storage container in the freezer.

NOTE: If you don’t have a high-powered blender, start by blending the milk and kale together first to reduce any green chunks. Then, add bananas in a few slices at a time.

Summer Clam Chowder
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Summer Clam Chowder


  • 2 cups potatoes, diced into ½" cubes
  • ½ pound unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons salt pork, diced into ¼” pieces
  • 1 cup onions, diced into ¼ W pieces
  • ¾ cup flour
  • 6 cups clam juice
  • 2 pounds fresh clam meat, coarsely chopped (available at seafood markets)
  • 2 cups corn
  • 2 cups light cream
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste

Serves 8-10

1. Begin by partially cooking the potatoes. Put them in a saucepan and cover them with water. Bring the water to a boil. Reduce the heat until the potatoes are just simmering. Allow them to simmer about 3 minutes; they'll still be firm. Immediately plunge them into cold water to stop the cooking, then drain and set aside.

2. In a large, heavy-bottomed stock pot, melt the butter. Add the salt pork and sauté over low heat until it turns light brown (5-7 minutes).

3. Add the onions and continue sautéing over low heat until translucent (4—5 minutes).

4. making the roux: Roux is a cooked combination of flour and butter that will act as the thickening agent when you add the liquid ingredients. To make the roux, add the flour to the butter, salt pork and onions. Cook the roux for 5 minutes, stirring constantly; otherwise your soup will have a floury taste. Pay attention to the heat. Burning the roux is worse than not cooking it at all, as a burned roux will give your soups a scorched flavor.

5. While making the roux, warm the clam juice in a saucepan.

6. Slowly ladle the warm clam juice into the stock pot, stirring constantly. Increase the heat to medium. Keep stirring until you've blended the roux and the clam juice completely and the mixture is thick and smooth.

7. Add the chopped clams, corn, and continue to cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.

8. Add the cream (both kinds) and potatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce the heat until the chowder is just simmering. Let it simmer over low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent the ingredients from sticking to the bottom of the pot.

9. Serve immediately.

Bowtie with Copper River Salmon, Broccolini, Summer Squash & Baby Tomatoes
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Bowtie with Copper River Salmon, Broccolini, Summer Squash & Baby Tomatoes


  • 3 cups dry bowties (cooked al dente)
  • 8 oz. Copper River Salmon (boneless & skinless)
  • 4 stalks broccolini (cut & blanched)
  • 2 oz. summer squash (sliced thin)
  • 10 each baby tomatoes (various colors, halved)
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • Fresh basil (a few whole leaves)
  • 1 oz. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbl. butter
  • Juice from ½ a lemon
  • Salt & pepper
  • Pinch of red chili flakes
  • 2 sheets parchment paper


1. Cook pasta in boiling salted water to al dente, drain then place in a mixing bowl, add butter & garlic, toss together and then add, broccolini, summer squash, baby tomatoes that are crushed in your hand before adding, lemon juice, salt, pepper & chili flakes. Set aside and let macerate

2. Slice your salmon into 2 oz. filets

3. Lay your parchment sheet out and fold in half

4. Lay your pasta down and then top with 2 filets of your salmon, a little lemon and fresh basil

5. Fold the parchment around the edges tightly in ¼ in folds to create a half moon shape. Make sure you press down firmly as you fold and crimp to seal the packets well otherwise steam will escape.

6. Place the packets on a baking sheet and cook at a pre heated 375-degree oven for 10 to 12 minutes

7. Serve the parchment packet directly on a plate and cut open at the table

Nana's Chicken and Peach Cobbler Waffle
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Nana's Chicken and Peach Cobbler Waffle


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 tbsp sugar
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ½ cups milk or buttermilk
  • 6 tbsp melted unsalted butter
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract


  • 6 each peaches the fresher the better
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract pure
  • 1 tsp cornstarch


  • 10 whole chicken wings, washed and pat dry 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons ground black pepper
  • ½ tablespoon of garlic powder
  • ½ tablespoon of Nana's Seasoning/ uncle butch creole seasoning 1 teaspoon of paprika
  • 3 cups of All purpose Flour
  • Parsley (pinch)
  • Canola Oil for frying



  1. Preheat waffle iron. Gently coat with nonstick baking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
  3. Whisk the two eggs into the milk until well combined.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients (butter, milk/egg mixture, vanilla) into the well of the dry ingredients and whisk until blended. (Note: the batter will be slightly lumpy, do not over-mix.)
  5. Scoop the batter into the preheated waffle iron and cook until the waffles are golden brown and crisp
  6. Sprinkle with confectioners sugar & whip cream

Cobbler Style Topping:

  1. Pit peaches and cut into wedge slices.
  2. In a medium pan on medium low heat, add butter, toss in peaches, lemon juice, brown sugar, salt, and cornstarch, let simmer until tender.
  3. Remove from stove and sit for 5 to 7 minutes.
  4. Top waffles with confection sugar, caramelized peaches, & whipped cream.

** Cooking Tip- Top with graham cracker crumbles


  1. Mix buttermilk, salt, pepper, nana's seasoning, and garlic powder in a larger bowl. Then add chicken wings to mixture cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  2. Mix paprika with the flour in a medium bowl with a baking sheet next to it.
  3. Remove the chicken from the buttermilk, then dip each chicken wing in flour, coating well, and shaking off excessive flour
  4. Add 1/2 to 3/4 inch oil to a large cast iron skillet or table top fryer. Heat to approximately 365 degrees F. Gently place chicken wings in hot oil. Cover, and fry until golden, turning once (use tongs), 15 to 20 minutes.
  5. Lift the finish pieces of chicken out of the oil and transfer to a paper-towel lined plate or baking sheet
  6. Serve alongside the waffle.
Churro Ice Cream Bowls
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Churro Ice Cream Bowls
  • 1 cup water
  • 4 Tbsp. butter
  • 2 Tbsp. + 1 cup sugar
  • ¾ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup flour
  • ¼ tsp. + 2 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
  • 3 eggs
  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • Oil for frying

Equipment: 12-cup muffin tin, medium size star-tip, piping bag
*Yield: 5 churro bowls

1. Whisk together 1 cup of sugar with 2 Tbsp. of cinnamon in a medium bowl. Set aside.

2. In a medium sauce pot, bring the water, butter, 2 Tbsp. sugar, salt and vanilla extract to a simmer until the butter is melted and sugar is dissolved. Stir in the flour with a wooden spoon until the mixture begins to dry out slightly and forms a ball.

3. Transfer the dough into a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat the mixture for 2 – 3 minutes until slightly cooled. Add in the eggs one at a time. Do not add in the next egg until the previous has been fully incorporated. Once all of the eggs have been added, transfer the dough to a piping bag fitted with a large star tip.

4. Invert the muffin tin and spray it generously with a non-stick cooking spray. Pipe the dough in a spiral around each muffin cup. Do not pipe the dough onto cups directly next to each other. Leave an empty cup in between to allow for the dough to expand. Place the muffin tin into the freezer for at least 3 hours or until they are frozen solid.

5. Pre heat 3 inches of oil in a heavy bottom pot to 350°F. Pry the frozen churro bowls from the muffin tin with a butter knife or similar blunt tool. Place them into the oil and fry them until the outsides are nicely browned, about 5 minutes. Flip the bowls over and continue frying for another 2 - 3 minutes. Remove the bowls from the oil and drain onto a paper towel lined tray.

6. While the churro bowls are still warm, roll them into the cinnamon sugar mixture. They are best served warm with your favorite ice cream and toppings.

Espresso Rub Pork Chop, Bourbon Caramel Sauce, Kumato Tomatoes & Point Reyes Blue Cheese
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Espresso Rub Pork Chop, Bourbon Caramel Sauce, Kumato Tomatoes & Point Reyes Blue Cheese

Ingredients for Espresso Rub

  • ½ cup finely ground espresso coffee
  • ½ cup of brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ginger powder
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt

Ingredients for Bourbon Caramel Sauce

  • 1 cup of white sugar
  • ½ cup of manufacturing cream
  • 2 ounces of bourbon
  • Pinch of kosher salt

Ingredients for Pork Chops

  • 4 Frenched Pork Chops 10 ounces each
  • ½ pound of watercress or 8 ounces of
  • 8 Kumato Tomatoes or 12 Cocktail Tomatoes or Vine Ripened
  • 1 tablespoon of EVOO
  • 4 ounces of Point Reyes Blue Cheese

Recipe Courtesy Chef Wayne Elias

1. For the rub, mix all the dry ingredients together and place on a plate.

2. Take each pork chop and dredge in the rub mixture on each side.

3. Heat a saute pan with the oil and cook each pork chop for 1 minute on each side. Then transfer to a pre-heated oven at 350 degrees, and cook for about 8 minutes until medium temperature (about 135 degrees internal temp).

4. While the pork is cooking, prepare the bourbon caramel sauce.

Bourbon Caramel Sauce:
1. Take a sauce pan, and place the white sugar in it. On medium heat, melt the sugar, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.

2. Keep a close eye on this until the sugar is all melted and has a caramel color. Then add the bourbon and cook for another minute.

3. Remove from the heat, add the cream and then cook for another 2 minutes -- stirring constantly. Then remove from heat and keep warm.

Pork Chop:
1. When the pork chops are done, place them on the cutting board and allow them to rest for 5 minutes.

2. Slice them on an angle and place on the dinner plates.

3. Then butterfly 2 tomatoes for each plate and place them on top of the watercress or sprouts layered with a piece of the Pt Reyes blue cheese on top. Drizzle with EVOO .

4. Then drizzle the bourbon caramel sauce on top of the pork and a little bit on the tomatoes.

Masa Bagel with Lox
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Masa Bagel with Lox

Ingredients for Jalapeño Masa Bagel

  • 1 T instant yeast
  • 3 cups Bread Flour
  • 1 cup Maseca corn flour
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 T brown sugar
  • 1 T granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ cups lukewarm water
  • 1 cup Jalapeno Diced and seeded

Ingredients for Water bath

  • 2 quarts water
  • 2 T brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

Ingredients for Cotija Cream Cheese

  • 4 oz Cream cheese
  • 4 oz Cotija, blended smooth
  • 3 oz Heavy whipping cream
  • TT White pepper
  • TT Salt

Ingredients for Mezcal Cured Salmon

  • 1 salmon filet
  • 2 cups kosher salt
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 2 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 cup chopped Cilantro
  • 8 oz aged mezcal
  • Dried Mexican Chile powders such as Chipotle, Guajillo, Ancho. Combine powders to personal tastes.


Jalapeño Masa Bagel:
1. Combine all of the dough ingredients and knead vigorously for 10 minutes if you're using an electric mixer or up to 15 minutes if you're kneading by hand.

2. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl and set it aside to rise until it's noticeably puffy, approximately 1 to 1 ½ hours.

3. Line 2 baking pans with parchment and grease the parchment. Transfer the dough to a work surface and divide it into 12 pieces for standard-size bagels.

4. Working with one piece at a time, roll it into a smooth log approximately 10’ long. Wrap the log around your palm and in one motion roll the bagel dough to connect the ends. Place six on a pan and cover the bagels with plastic wrap and let them rest for 30 minutes. They'll puff up very slightly.

5. While the dough is resting, prepare the water bath by heating the water, malt, and sugar to a very gentle boil in a large, wide-diameter pan. Preheat your oven to 425°F.

6. Transfer the bagels, four at a time if possible, to the simmering water. Increase the heat under the pan to bring the water back up to a gently simmering boil, if necessary. Cook the bagels for 30 seconds, flip them over, and cook 30 seconds more. Using a skimmer or strainer, remove the bagels from the water and place them back on the baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining bagels.

7. Bake the bagels for 20 to 25 minutes, or until they're as deep brown as you like, turning them over about 15 minutes into the baking time (this will help them remain tall and round). Remove the bagels from the oven, and cool completely on a rack.

Cotija Cream Cheese:
1. In a food processor, blend the cotija cheese and heavy whipping cream until smooth and creamy.

2. Add the remaining ingredients and blend until smooth, light and fluffy.

3. Be sure to season with white pepper and salt.

Mezcal Cured Salmon:

1. Line a shallow baking dish or pan large enough to hold salmon filet with plastic wrap.

2. Place salmon skin side down.

3. Pour mezcal over salmon.

4.Combine salt, sugar, onion powder and cilantro and cover salmon.

5. Wrap filet tightly in plastic and refrigerate for 24 to 48 hours depending on size and thickness of salmon and personal preference (36 hours is average for most salmon).

6. Rinse salmon of all salt and pat dry.

7. Once dry sprinkle Chile powders over filet.

S'mores Icebox Cake
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S'mores Icebox Cake


  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups whipping cream
  • 2 cups marshmallow fluff
  • 1 ½ cup chocolate ganache (RECIPE BELOW)
  • 70 to 80 graham cracker halves (snapped horizontally across)
  • A butane torch

Chocolate Ganache

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • Gray sea salt for garnish


S'more Ice Box Cake:
Servings: Makes the equivalent to a 9” layer cake; serves 10-12 people
Note: I built mine on a 10 inch cake platter

1. In a medium bowl, add sugar, vanilla and heavy cream. Beat with electric mixture on medium speed until stiff peaks are formed. Meanwhile, remove the lid and heat the marshmallow fluff in the microwave for 10 seconds (any longer and it will puff everywhere).

2. On a large plate or serving platter, spread 1 tablespoon of whipped cream on the bottom to anchor cake to plate. Top with graham crackers in a circular pattern, about 9 to 10 inches wide.

3. Using a spatula, cover crackers evenly with whipped cream, top with a layer of chocolate ganache, then top with crackers. Top the next layer with marshmallow fluff. Quickly torch the layer of marshmallow with a butane torch. Repeat until you have 7 layers of crackers, ending with marshmallow fluff. Refrigerate overnight (this is necessary! It lets the graham crackers need time to soften).

Chocolate Ganache:
1. Bring cream to a boil in a 1-qt. saucepan over medium heat.

2. Put chocolate into a medium bowl and pour in hot cream; let sit for 1 minute, then stir slowly with a rubber spatula until smooth.

3. Cool completely.

Maine Lobster Rolls with Lemon Aioli, Chives, and Buttered Brioche
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Maine Lobster Rolls with Lemon Aioli, Chives, and Buttered Brioche

Ingredients for Lobster Mix

  • 1 clove Garlic, minced
  • 1 Shallot, minced
  • 1 TB Olive oil
  • 3 cups of cleaned lobster meat, cut into 1/2 inch chunks (approximately 2.25lbs)
  • 1/2 cup Celery, sliced and soaked in water
  • 1/2 cup Mayonnaise
  • Juice and zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp Dill, chopped
  • 1 TB Parsley, chopped

Ingredients for Buns

  • 6 top cut brioche hot dog buns, or something very soft (King’s Hawaiian or Parker House rolls)
  • 2TB butter

Ingredients for Garnish

  • 2 TB Chives, sliced

Ingredients for Tomato Peach and Corn Salad

  • 3/4 cup heirloom tomatoes, sliced
  • 3/4 cup peaches, sliced
  • 1/4 cup cooked corn kernels
  • 1/4 cup sliced red onion
  • 3 TB capers, drained
  • 4 TB Extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 TB Pedro Jimenez Sherry Vinegar
  • 1 TB Sugar
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup Basil, chiffonade

Directions for Lobster Rolls:
1. In a medium heat pan, combine the garlic, shallot and Olive oil. Slowly sweat the garlic and shallot until translucent
2. Remove from the heat, add to a medium sized mixing bowl
3. Add the celery, mayonnaise, lemon juice and zest, dill and parsley to the garlic shallot mix. Fold all of the ingredients gently together with the lobster until thoroughly mixed with the mayonnaise. Hold chilled until ready to eat
4. In a medium heat sauté pan, add the butter and cook the buns on the cut sides until toasted and golden brown
5. Place approximately 1/2cup of the lobster mix in each top cut bun.
6. Garnish with the sliced chives

Directions for Tomato and Peach Corn Salad:
1. In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients except the basil and capers. Let marinade 15-20 minutes.
2. Just before serving add half the basil to the salad and gently mix.
3. Serve in a shallow bowl and garnish with the remaining basil and capers (can also fry the capers as an extra wow!)

Black Plum Cornmeal Upside-Down Cake
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Black Plum Cornmeal Upside-Down Cake

Ingredients for Cornmeal Batter

  • ½ cup stone ground cornmeal
  • ¾ cup extra-fine almond flour
  • ½ cup GF blend, such as Measure for Measure (you can also use AP flour)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 10 tablespoons (1 ¼ sticks) unsalted butter, slightly softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp almond extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • ½ cup full-fat sour cream

Ingredients for Plum Mixture

  • 1 ¼ pound black plums (6-8 plums or as many as you need to tightly cover the bottom of the pan) cut into ¼ inch slices.
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • ½ cup lightly packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp honey

Courtesy of Candace Nelson, co-founder and exec pastry chef at Pizzana
Serves 10

1. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Wrap the outside (bottom and sides) of a 9-inch springform pan with aluminum foil and set it on the baking sheet.*

2. Make the cornmeal batter:

3. In a larger bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the 10 tablespoons of the butter with the sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the vanilla and almond extracts and beat until just blended. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until fully blended between additions.

Reduce the speed to low and add half the flour mixture, then the sour cream, then the remaining flour mixture, beating until just blended after each addition.

5. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

6. In a small saucepan, melt the 4 tablespoons of butter with the 1/2 cup brown sugar and honey over medium heat, stirring often, until the mixture is bubbling and the sugar has partially dissolved, 2 minutes.

Drizzle the mixture evenly over the bottom of the pan, then add the plum slices, very tightly overlapping, in concentric circles so that they completely cover the bottom of the pan. (Keep in mind the fruit will shrink during cooking and you want to avoid too much of the cake poking through). Pour the batter over the plums smoothing it out to the sides to evenly cover the surface.

7. Bake, turning halfway through, until the surface is deeply golden and the middle of the cake provides resistance when pressed lightly with your finger, approximately 70 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack for 15 to 20 minutes, run a sharp knife around the rim of the cake, then invert the cake onto your desired serving platter and let it sit, still in the springform pan, for 5 minutes.

Remove and discard the foil from the outside of the pan, then release and remove the springform ring from the pan. The top of the cake will be juicy and almost pudding-like from the plums. Eat warm, like a bread pudding, with ice cream, or cool to room temperature and serve with whipped cream.

*Tip: Since the unbaked batted can be a bit runny, we recommend wrapping the springform pan in aluminum foil for an extra layer of insurance against leaks. Once baked, make sure to follow the directions, letting the cake sit, inverted, in its pan before releasing the outer ring – this will ensure that all the plums end up on top of your cake – not stuck in the pan.