Friday, February 28, 2014

Fried Cabbage with Bacon, Onion, and Garlic - A Delicious Side

In my search for an easy recipe to use some leftover cabbage, I came across this keeper on ( It does take about and hour and a quarter to prepare and cook. It serves six, but it was so good that I ate a couple of servings.


6 slices bacon, chopped
1 large onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large head cabbage, cored and sliced (My leftover cabbage was only about 2/3 of a head. That worked fine.)
1 tablespoon salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon paprika


- Place the bacon in a large stockpot and cook over medium-high heat until crispy - 9-10 minutes. (At this point, I removed the bacon, although that step is not included in the original recipe.)
- Add the onion and garlic; cook and stir until the onion caramelizes, about 10 minutes.
- Immediately stir in the cabbage, and continue to cook and stir another 10 minutes.
- Season with salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and paprika. At this point, I put the bacon back in the pot. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes more.

Superb Lunch at Ziti, Westfield Southgate Mall, Sarasota

While shopping at Sarasota's Westfield Southgate Mall, my wife and I had a superb lunch at Ziti (, a restaurant offering a fusion of American, Italian, and Asian cuisines. The only downside to our lunch was that we both chose the same wonderful dish, so my review is more limited than I'd like.

We both had the Braised Lamb Risotto with asparagus and wild mushroom blend finished with lemon thyme crème fresh (sic - should be crème fraîche). It was fantastic. We also had the hot ciabatta bread with tomato butter that they offer free with the meals. It was delicious.

I had a glass of Ruffino Chianti for $7.

The menu had a nice selection of appetizers, salads, soups, sandwiches & burgers, flatbread pizzas, pastas, and a mix of entrées. It included some very interesting sounding dishes, including Asian Calamari, Wasabi Scallops, Asparagus Shiitake Bisque, Asian Sesame Salad, Salmon Burger, Grilled Ginger Teriyaki Shrimp, Vietnamese Scallops, Roasted Miso Haddock, and Cioppino.

The service was excellent. I was very impressed with how the maître d' and a waiter bent over backwards to please a customer who was unhappy with her order. They were extremely professional.

We look forward to enjoying another meal there.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Salmon with Brandy or Bourbon & Brown Sugar Glaze - Fast & Easy

It's amazing how many easy and delicious salmon recipes there are. While I was buying salmon at our local Publix last night, the seafood seller and I discussed ways to prepare salmon. He mentioned that one customer uses a bourbon, orange juice, and honey recipe. When I returned home, I did an Internet search for salmon - bourbon recipes. I found one that sounded good, but then I discovered that I had no bourbon. I decided to use brandy instead. I was delight with the results, and the preparation was really easy.

The recipe I used was from ( It has only four ingredients and is really easy to prepare.

The recipe below is the full recipe which serves four. I cut it in half because there were just two of us. The brandy I used was Montmartre Extra Fine Napoleon French brandy. Despite the name, it was inexpensive - about $10 for a .75 liter bottle.

- 4 (6-ounce) salmon steaks
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/3 cup bourbon (or brandy)

- Melt butter in a large heavy skillet over medium heat.
- Stir in brown sugar.
- Place salmon fillets on top of brown sugar mixture.
- Cook for 5 minutes on medium heat.
- Turn salmon fillets, and pour bourbon/brandy around the fillets.
- Continue cooking for 5 minutes, or until salmon flakes easily with a fork.
- Spoon glaze over the salmon and serve.