Monday, April 17, 2017

One Fix When HP All-in-One Printer Prints, But Won't Copy or Scan

My current current all-in-one printer is an HP Officejet Pro 8600 Plus and my previous one was an HP Officejet J6400. Each experienced with scanning and copying, but had no problem with printing. The symptoms were different, but the solution was the same and very easy - clean the glass properly.

The glass may appear to be clean at first glance, but it may be just clouded enough to keep the scanner from aligning properly. The copies and scans I was making just prior to the problem all appeared to be fine.

The symptom with the J6400 was a horrible grinding noise  from the alignment bar. With the 8600, there was no such noise. Instead, I received various error messages, none of which suggested the problem. The messages said things like, "Scan, copy, and fax failed;" and "Can't communicate with printer."

With the J6400, it was the underside of the glass that was dirty. I was very fortunate to find an on-line explanation (by a user, not by HP) on how to access the underside of the glass.

With the 8600, it was the top of the glass that was causing the problem.

There are on-line videos that explain how to clean the glass. It is very important to use glass cleaner or water. It is also important to apply the cleaner to a lint-free cloth, not directly to the glass.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Rick's French Bistro, Sarasota - Magnifique!

Last night, we enjoyed a terrific dinner with friends at Rick's French Bistro ( in Sarasota.We are grateful to our friends for suggesting this terrific restaurant. Every bite was wonderful.

My wife and I share an appetizer of Cognac Country Pâté (Pâté de Campagne au Cognac) for $10.95. It was wonderful.

For her main course, my wife enjoyed Grilled Lamb Chops with Provençal Herbs (Cotes d'Agneau aux Fines Herbes de Provence) for $27.50. They were perfect.

My main course was Chef Michele's Duck Cassoulet (Le Canard du Chef Michele) with sausage, white beans, onions, cognac, and white wine sauce for $30.50. It was magnificent!!!!!

For dessert, my wife had chocolate mousse for $7 and I had Crêpes à l'Orange for $7.50. Both were delicious.

Our wine was a nice Paul Bouchard Côtes du Rhône for $33.95.

As is often the case with bistros, the menu and wine list are relatively short, but they cover a variety of types.

The owners of Rick's are Michele and Richard who are from Amiens, north of Paris. Michele is the chef.

Rick's is very popular, so reservations are very important.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Island Grill and Raw Bar, St. Petersburg - a Delightful Lunch

Yesterday, my wife and I joined friends for lunch at Island Grill and Raw Bar ( in St. Petersburg. It was a pleasant way to spend an early afternoon. 

We both had lobster sliders, which came with three sliders and a side for $17. The sliders were filled with delicious lobster meat, and the fries we had were very tasty. I also had a cup of the lobster bisque for $5. It was a bit on the sweet side, but was tasty. 

My wife had a mango rum punch for $9. She wasn't crazy about it. I had a glass of the Banfi Centine rosé for $7.50. It went perfectly with the lobster.

The sides of the restaurant were open and a nice breeze kept us comfortable.

Our server, Scott, was terrific.

The restaurant web site lists its city location as Tierra Verde, but our navigation system would only recognize St. Petersburg.

Mamma Agata's Lemon Cake - Dolce di Limone

Along the Sorrentine Peninsula, which includes the Amalfi Coast on it southern side, lemons are a major crop and are used in many dishes from pasta sauce to desserts to limoncello liqueur.  Lemon cakes are a very popular dessert. 

In searching for a lemon cake recipe, I found a winner in Dolce di Limone, by Mamma Agata, a renowned cook from the beautiful town of Ravello. I made two of these cakes in the past two weeks, and I was very pleased with the results. The end product is a moist cake completely infused with lemon flavor. It takes a bit of work, but I believe it's worth the effort for a special dinner.

I found a version of Mamma Agata's recipe at I have changed the instructions to reflect my own experiences. There is also a YouTube video with instructions at 

You might want to check out Mamma Agata's web site:

This recipe serves 10, unless you taste it and decide you might want to consume the whole thing.


A. Cake Dough
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 2 sticks of butter at room temperature, plus extra for greasing the pan
- 4 eggs
- grated zest pf 3 large lemons or 5-6 small ones
- pinch of sea salt
- 2 cups "00" flour or white pastry flour. I used King Arthur unbleached cake flour. Do not use all-purpose flour or bread flour.
- 4 1/4 tsp of baking powder. (This sounds like a lot, but is the perfect amount.
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1/4 cup hazelnuts, chopped (optional)
B. Lemonade Mixture to Infuse into Dough after Baking
- 1 1/4 cups water
- juice of the 3 large or 5-6 small lemons you zested
- 8 Tbsp sugar


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees

2. Butter a non-stick Bundt pan and coat lightly with flour. Shake out the excess flour. Make sure to butter the Bundt pan liberally with butter to help prevent the cake from sticking to the pan.

3. Mix the butter in a mixing bowl on high speed for at least 2 minutes. (If the sticks of butter are too cold and not at room temperature, the sticks could fly out of the bowl when you begin mixing.)

4. Add the sugar and continue to whip until a soft cream mixture forms.

5. Mix the baking powder into the flour and set aside.

6. Add the eggs one at a time to the butter and sugar mixture and blend. Then add the salt and grated lemon zest.

7. Alternate adding and blending a little of the flour mixture and the milk into the mixing bowl until all is used up and blended into the batter.

8. Mix the ingredients on medium speed for about 5 minutes until the batter has a light and airy consistency similar to a mousse.

9. Pour the batter into your prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes in the preheated oven. While the cake is baking, do not open the oven door to peek or the cake will not rise properly.

10. While the cake is baking, prepare the lemonade mixture. Squeeze the lemons into a pitcher. Add the sugar to the lemon juice and stir until dissolved. Add the water and stir well.

11. Once the cake is finished baking, let it sit for 2 hours outside the oven until it is at room temperature.

12. Before starting to add the lemonade, make sure the cake does not stick to the pan. Hold a dish towel firmly on top of the cake and carefully turn the pan upside down. If the cake does not easily separate from the pan, do not force it, or the cake may come apart. If the cake does not easily come out of the pan, place it back into the oven at 350 degrees for several minutes. This will warm up the butter and allow it to release. If it still does not release, you can insert something very thin between the sides of the cake and the pan to try to separate them.

13. Once the cake comes nicely out of the pan, gently place it back into the pan so you can begin pouring the lemonade. Over the course of 30 minutes, pour some lemonade over the entire exposed part of the cake every 10 minutes. This allows the cake to absorb the lemonade. Make sure you have some lemonade left after the 3 ours. After the cake has absorbed the third pour, gently tip the cake out of the pan onto the serving dish you plan to use. Add the remaining lemonade to the top of the cake, distributing it evenly, and let it absorb for at least 10 minutes.

14. Garnish the cake with the chopped hazelnuts or sprinkle confectioners sugar on top.

You could serve it with limoncello.

Mamma Agata's Pasta Sauce

This pasta sauce recipe is very easy to make. I found it at Mamma Agata's web site ( The recipe should serve four. I added half again as many ingredients to those below because I was preparing dinner for six. I have added one comment to the additional recipe. My comment is underlined. I added the first direction below because I peeled the tomatoes.


- 2 cloves fresh garlic, sliced
- 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lb of cherry or Roma tomatoes (can be half of each) I used Roma tomatoes.
- 2 pinches of sea salt
- 2 Tbsp fresh basil
- 2 pinches of dried oregano


1. If using Roma tomatoes, peel by:
- cutting an x into the tip of each tomato
- place in boiling water for about 25 seconds
- put in ice water to stop cooking
- peel. It should come right off.

2. Thinly slice the garlic. Add the olive oil and garlic to a large saucepan at the same time. Note: Do not heat the oil first, and then add the garlic to the pan. Rather, place the ingredients into the pan at room temperature, and then heat the pan. Heat on high for 1-2 minutes.

3. Chop the cherry tomatoes in half (or quarters if they are large or if you are using Roma tomatoes).

3. Add the chopped tomatoes, sea salt, and fresh basil to the pan with the oil and garlic. Cover the pan and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the oregano.

4. Cook your favorite pasta al dente, drain the pasta, and add it to the sauce. You have to marry your favorite ingredients before serving. Add a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

An Amalfi Coast - Sorrento - Capri - Pompeii Dinner

My wife and I and two other couples alternate hosting dinners for the six of us. This month was our turn. I selected a southwest Italian theme covering the area from Pompeii to Ravello near Amalfi. The area contains some of the most breathtakingly beautiful scenery on earth, and has some very nice cuisine and good wines.

I called the dinner, "Una Cena Amalfitana" (An Amalfi Dinner).

Along the Amalfi Coast

The dishes and wines on the menu were:

Castelvetrano & Cerrignola Olives, Roasted Red Peppers, Marinated Mushrooms, Marinated Artichoke Hearts, Prosciutto, Baguette Slices Baked with Olive Oil

Paccheri Pasta con Salsa di Pommodoro di Mamma Agata
(Paccheri Pasta with Mamma Agata’s Tomato Pasta Sauce)

Pesce All’Acqua Pazza
(Fish in Crazy Water)

Insalata Caprese
(Capri Salad)

Dolce al Limone di Mamma Agata
(Mamma Agata’s Lemon Cake)

Foss Marai Prosecco
Lacrima Christi del Vesuvio White & Red
(Tears of Christ of Mt. Vesuvius)

The antipasto was not an authentic Amalfi area antipasto, but it had the right spirit.

The paccheri pasta has an interesting story. It is wide, short tubular pasta that was supposedly created by Italian farmers to smuggle their tasty garlic into Austria after Austrian farmers convinced their government to ban the Italian garlic.

There were two items in which I used the recipes of Mamma Agata  (, a remarkable chef in Ravello, near Amalfi. She has a cooking school, has a cookbook, and sells Italian foods. She has cooked for the likes of Jacqueline Kennedy, Humphrey Bogart, Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor, etc., etc.

A view from Ravello, high above the Tyrrehenian Sea

I intend to post both of the Mamma Agata recipes I used, with my comments about each. The pasta sauce is simple and easy. The cake takes a bit of work, but it is fantastic!!!!

I previously created a post about the fish dish (, which is very easy to make.

Caprese salad was created on the Isle of Capri. located just off the coast from Sorrento. The colors of its ingredients - tomato, mozzarella, and basil - represent the colors of the Italian flag. The way I served it was with a slice of tomato, topped by a slice of mozzarella, topped by a basil leaf, and then another layer of each. It is served with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. 

Of course, the Prosecco wine was from the Veneto in northern Italy. The other two wines were from Mt. Vesuvius, just north of Sorrento. They were very nice. I wanted to serve wines from the Amalfi area, but could not find any locally.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Veronica Fish and Oyster - Very Nice

My wife and I recently enjoyed a delightful dinner at Veronica Fish and Oyster ( on Hillview near Morton's market in Sarasota. Our original intention was to dine at a restaurant in Siesta Village. Big mistake! That place was mobbed.

My wife had the Shrimp  & Grits & Scallops with wine & garlic butter and bacon and roasted oyster mushrooms for $32. 

I had the Bouillabaisse, a Monday night special. It had sea bass, Key West pink shrimp, mussels, clams, blue crab, and Yukon gold potatoes. It came with three slices of toast for dipping in the broth. As the waiter told us in advance, there was less broth than in a typical bouillabaisse. The cost was $36. 

Both of our main dishes were terrific.

We also ordered the house-made potato rolls with bottarga (mullet roe) butter for $3. The rolls were incredible.

My wife had a glass of sangria for $8. She did not care for it.

I had a very nice Laetitia Ducroux Sancerre for $13 per glass. I thought it went perfectly with the bouillabaisse.

One interesting looking item on the menu is a "Porchetta Board," which our server said includes porchetta, chicken liver pâté, smoked duck pastrami, and smoked fish. I intend to return to try it. Hopefully, the porchetta will resemble the authentic Italian version, which we love.

Our server, Dillon, was very professional and pleasant.

The atmosphere was very nice and there were outdoor tables with heaters.