Another rainy friday morning and we went out exploring the next breakfast stop. Just about any road on Cape Cod will lead you to a breakfast spot, but finding a good one may be a little tricky for some. Not for us this morning when an opened parking spot in front of Sandi's Diner beckoned us to stop in and try this quaint little hideaway. It may be small but the menu offers lots to choose from and the coffee is very good. I always have a difficult time deciding and found the " I Can't Decide" which offered a pancake, a mini waffle, 1 slice of bacon, 1egg and 1 sausage patty very good and a choice you won't regret. The waffle and pancake were thick, but light and very flavorful.My Friend picked the 2 eggs scrambled, 2 slices of bacon, homefries and a grilled homemade blueberry muffin. No wonder Sandi's Diner is so busy in the summer, its great.
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Cooking is a bonding experience it allows us to create memories and some times just the smell of certain spices or foods will transport us back into time. During difficult times, it can be very comforting to go back in time and remember the memories attached to certain foods. When you enter the Atlantic Spice Company in Truro, your nose will awaken those memories and soon you will be planning your next food adventure. If you are not sure what to use some of those wonderful smelling spices for, you will find book shelves filled with ideas and cookbooks of every ethnic heritage. There are pots and pans, unique cooking utensils, teas, beans, rice, nuts and in other words it's a cook's paradise. If you are not a great cook you are inspired to become one just by being in the Atlantic Spice Company Shop. Sure you can buy spices anywhere else and even for a dollar; but how long have they been hanging around? The shelf life is usually thought to be 6 months or less.So with that thought in mind, maybe it's time to clean your spice shelf and rediscover some spices and family recipes, and maybe even discover new spices, spice blends or recipes.
One of my favorite spice blends is Herbs De Provence which is a blend of Rosemary, Thyme, Savory, Fennel Seeds, Basil, Lavender, and Marjoram.This is their custom house blend. This is a spice mix of sweet French herbs and lavender with flavorful Italian herbs. Authentic, commonly used blend for stews, meat dishes, and sassy sautees. I used it in a Chicken Provencal and it was delicious but I am sure that some of you will have even more recipes to try it in.
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While celebrating the holidays is all about traditions and passing on those family cherished recipes, I find that creating new recipes and traditions can be even more fun. My New Year's goal this year is to finally use all those products and tools that I have collected over the years. Whether it be one of those shopping channels who enticed me into buying the next new gadget that I just couldn't live without or those stacks of clipped recipes that one day I would try whenever I just had the time, this year I want to develop more skills and use all that I have collected.
We are lucky on Cape Cod to have lots of resources available to help make us a better cook. We have great Farmer's Markets, seafood delivered fresh, spices, oils, specialty vinegars and lot of places where we can find those unique gadgets to make our cooking fun and easy. And so I am off and running this year to grow and maybe become a better cook. My first stop is find spices, something different to add a little more flavor and life to my food. I stopped by the Spice Merchant in Mashpee Common's and found a cute little spice and tea shop that has a lot to offer. There are many choices available and one might get overwhelmed and run out the door, but stick around and sniff out you next ingredient to cook with and you will be surprised.Spices don't really have much of a shelf life so maybe it's time to refresh your supply.
I tried the Boater's Blend which is hand mixed from dill weed, onion, salt, chives, celery seed, garlic, pepper, arrowroot, shallots, sugar, and mustard. It's suggested as a veggie seasoning but I have used it as a rub on chicken, pork and steak. You can sprinkle on top of your choice and grill or bake and the finished products will make you wanting more. I have used it with potato salad, mashed potatoes, mixed veggies and fish.This is a very flavorful blend for making cracker spread, chip, or vegetable dip! Add one tablespoon mix to eight ounces of sour cream or cream cheese.Blend thoroughly and refrigerate for an hour; serve and enjoy! All the ingredients are out there, we just have to start exploring.
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Well if you are looking for something different and are tired of the same old choices you need to stop by Percy's Place.There is one in Hyannis on Main Street across from the Cape Cod Train Depot, in Falmouth on NorthMain Street and in Mashpee on Route 28. Make sure you have some time because the menu selections are filled with so many choices you might get lost but one thing is for sure, you will have breakfast your way and it will be delicious.
I love to venture out for breakfast during the cold winter/spring months because you get to taste some great food without the crowds, so my friend and I chase away the cold blues with good food. My friend decided on the Persy's Omelet with American cheese, tomato, onion and bacon which came with her choice of two sides. The choice of sides is what makes your breakfast special with at least fifteen choices. She decided on toast and home fries, which were cooked lightly browned and well seasoned. I picked the Stuffed Mushroom Omelet which had sauteed mushrooms and herb stuffing with a flavorful light Hollandaise Sauce. For my sides I choose the hash browns and white toast. In all the breakfast was good and Persy's has become another favorite along my Breakfast Trail.
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Another Cold and rainy morning started this day off just fine.One of many stops in Orleans is sure to put a smile on your face and some good home cook goodness in your belly. A good breakfast isn't complete unless you have a great cup of coffee and so far for me Hole in One has the best and the menu selection offers choices beyond your expectations.
Three eggs any style, two strips of bacon, a sausage patty and ham,
served with toast and home fries – 7.99
On a cold cloudy Friday, I stepped into a warmth of sunshine at Ruggie's in Harwich with a feeling that this was going to be a breakfast to remember.
It's brightly colored orange walls warmed up my chilled bones and the newly tuned menu invited me to explore their creativity. You can create your own combo breakfast choices and never be disappointed.
My friend decided on 2 eggs scrambled with crispy thick bacon, golden flavorful home fries and a big fluffly pancake. It became a pleasant memory as soon as her fork touched the home cooked goodness. I had to try one of the "Melting Pot" creations which includes eggs, finely chopped potatoes, veggies and meat from the country you were exploring.
I choose the " Swiss Pot" which included roesti (potatoes), 2 fried eggs, ham and spinach topped with melted swiss cheese. You have to love cheese and all that great melted goodness to truly enjoy the melting pot dishes and each fresh ingredient combined to layered the flavor making the dish outstanding.
If you are super hungry and looking for a challenge, you could try the "Duke" 2 waffles, 6 eggs, ¼ lb. cheddar cheese, ¼ lb. American cheese, hash browns, Ruggie's gravy,2 buttermilk pancakes, 6 strips of bacon, 3 sausage patties, and 2 pieces of boneless fried chicken. $19.00
The Breakfast Sandwich Challenge
THE RULES: You have 30 minutes to finish everything on your plate and one 8oz beverage.
You must remain seated the entire 30 minutes. If you succeed you will win a Ruggie's T-shirt, your meal is free, and your picture will forever be on our wall!
“Don't Disrespect 'The Duke!'”
Whatever you choose I know you will like and this is one place that I know that I will be returning to.
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Ok the snow is melting and we are seeing grass, but spring still seems so far away. So my favorite way to get through the winter blues is to get out and play tourist by sampling one of our many great breakfast stops.
First stop will be the Marshland in Sandwich on Route 6a which reminds me of Cape Cod past. It's small with their own little bakery and filled with that old diner charm.
The menu is full of great breakfast choices and reasonably priced.
For example the 222 is simply delicious with fluffy pancakes, eggs done your way and crispy bacon. Two eggs any way, flavorful toasted home fries, crispy bacon and thick lightly toasted sourdough toast will also make your breakfast a memorable stop.
The coffee is good and the waitresses are friendly. Their bakery has some competition with the Market Basket Superstore, but bigger isn't always better.
Eating at Marshland is like being back in time and eating at Grandma's with fresh home baked goods.
Don't forget their "World Famous Stuffed Quahog" from the Food Network's Duff Goldman Best Choice.
The quahog has chucks of fresh quahog in every bite in a bread crumb stuffing with a hint of ritz cracker crumbles.
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Cape Cod has lost a Foodie Icon and many of us have lost a friend. I am speaking of John Rega who to many of us was known as the Cape Cod Foodie and could be heard on Wxtk 95.1 every Sunday morning at 10am. When I first settled here on Cape Cod some twelve years ago is when I first started listening to John speak with his call in fans about various restaurants and share experiences about where to dine. I was hooked and watched his televised shows, Dining Around and taped them for visitors and family. I have called in during his radio shows to voice my opinion or share a favorite restaurant and even won some gifts as a result along the way. But I had the extreme pleasure to meet with him of recently and it will forever be a treasured memory for me. We had been Facebook friends and I had started a site called Cape Cod Food Lovers and that's where our story began. I arrived a little early and stop over at the Vna Thrift Shop to see if I could find some lost treasure, only to find John doing the same. He had found a Mexican cookbook from the 1980's. It interested him because the author was Mexican and it was about her heritage and family traditions and recipes. He said he often would buy the old cookbooks because he loved to explore the old methods of cooking. We met at one of his favorite restaurants The Bistrot de Solei, a restaurant neatly tucked away on a side street in Hyannis. He has been a supporter of the restaurant as well as others since its beginning and told me stories of their beginnings. We talked over appetizers and shared some of his stories on the road. He showed me his book that had the outline of Cape Cod with bites around the edges which he said showed his "Eating his way around Cape Cod". He had a tape recorder with some of his previous interviews and radio shows.
I was a fan already and he didn't need to prove himself to me, because I already had been watching his television shows and You Tube Videos. He was a kind and gentle man who always took time to share and mentor as he has done all of his life. He worried for his restaurant friends because off season life on Cape Cod is tough. We have so many good restaurants and food sources that need to get attention out there. John was always the advocate for Cape Cod and getting people out to explore new Restaurants or Businesses. He was always there to support a cause or event and will be missed by many as well as me. Glad I got the chance to meet you John.
Prayers, Peace and Love to John's Family and Friends.
Harvest Soup in a Pumpkin
2 lbs of beef stew meat, cubed into 1 in pieces
3 tbsp veg oil, divided
1 cup water
3 large potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 carrots, sliced
1 large bell pepper, chopped
4 garlic cloves, diced
1 onion, chopped
2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 (14.5oz) can whole peeled tomatoes
2 tbsp beef bouillon granules
1 bay leaf
Heat 2 tbsp oil in large saucepan over medium high heat. Place beef in the saucepan and cook evenly until brown.
Mix in water, potatoes,carrots. green pepper, garlic, onion,
bay leaf, salt and pepper. Bring to boil. Reduce heat. Simmer approximately 2 hours. Remove bay leaf.
Dissolve the bouillon into beef mix and the stir in tomatoes.
Cut off top of pumpkin and remove seeds and pulp. Place it on a baking sheet. Fill the pumpkin with the soup mix.
Brush outside of pumpkin with oil.
Bake in preheated oven for 2 hours, or until tender.
Serve from the pumpkin, scraping out some of the pumpkin with each serving.
Any good harvest soup recipe will do good. Have fun and good eating.