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.
It has always been a tradition to drive down to Wellfleet on Route 6 where one can find a house adorned with spooky visions. Thanks you the people who keep up the tradition. Enjoy my slideshow as I have enjoyed their works of art. Have a Happy and safe Halloween.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
All houses wherein men have lived and died
Are haunted houses. Through the open doors
The harmless phantoms on their errands glide,
With feet that make no sound upon the floors.
We meet them at the door-way, on the stair,
Along the passages they come and go,
Impalpable impressions on the air,
A sense of something moving to and fro.
There are more guests at table than the hosts
Invited; the illuminated hall
Is thronged with quiet, inoffensive ghosts,
As silent as the pictures on the wall.
The stranger at my fireside cannot see
The forms I see, nor hear the sounds I hear;
He but perceives what is; while unto me
All that has been is visible and clear.
We have no title-deeds to house or lands;
Owners and occupants of earlier dates
From graves forgotten stretch their dusty hands,
And hold in mortmain still their old estates.
The spirit-world around this world of sense
Floats like an atmosphere, and everywhere
Wafts through these earthly mists and vapours dense
A vital breath of more ethereal air.
Our little lives are kept in equipoise
By opposite attractions and desires;
The struggle of the instinct that enjoys,
And the more noble instinct that aspires.
These perturbations, this perpetual jar
Of earthly wants and aspirations high,
Come from the influence of an unseen star
An undiscovered planet in our sky.
And as the moon from some dark gate of cloud
Throws o’er the sea a floating bridge of light,
Across whose trembling planks our fancies crowd
Into the realm of mystery and night,—
So from the world of spirits there descends
A bridge of light, connecting it with this,
O’er whose unsteady floor, that sways and bends,
Wander our thoughts above the dark abyss.
Come watch the fun as the Pumpkin People come alive. Pumpkin People will remain in the park through October 31.Judging for the best Pumpkin People in the Park will take place at the Oktoberfest in Chatham.
Saturday, October 25
Oktoberfest in Chatham
Kate Gould Park 12 noon to 4 pm
Official Oktoberfest Beer Garden tent.
Fun activities for all ages. Oktoberfest food will be available from the vendors next to the park, music in the bandstand, Pumpkin People viewing, bobbing for apples, doughnuts on a string, face painting, pumpkin bowling, games for kids of all ages.
Apple Pie Contest Judging will be at 1 pm
It starts with idea, inspiration, a pile of sand and a person with a creative flair. If you had the chance to visit a few business sites in Yarmouth this summer then you have seen a beautiful sand sculpture or two along your travels. There are 42 sculptures to be correct that are scattered along in Yarmouth and each has a story to tell. Please respect the money and time that went into each sculpture so they may be enjoyed by others.
If you haven"t gotten the chance then get out there and enjoy the sculptures and your summer.
Hooray for pancakes the delicate cross between breakfast and desert. Nothing beats the taste of butter and maple syrup served over a nice stack of steaming warm pancakes on any morning cold or warm. IHop is celebrating the day by serving up free pancakes and guests will be asked to consider leaving a donation for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals© or other designated local charities. For me the breakfast menu is always a difficult choice because I always want my eggs too, but that choice is easy when you visit some of the local restaurants. At Hearth 'n Kettle you can order the "sunrise Breakfast" which includes 2 eggs, 2 buttermilk pancakes , bacon, home fries and toast or a cheese omelet, 2 buttermilk pancakes, bacon and home fries all for $6.59. The picture above is from another favorite breakfast place in Dennis called Grumpy's which serves pancakes big enough to fill your plate and starting under $7, with choices of plain, Blueberry, Cranberry, Apple, Banana or Chocolate Chip. At the Pancakeman in Yarmouth you can even get Peanut Butter Pancakes topped with whipped cream for $7.95 as well as other choices. And don't forget the Red Cottage before the crowds arrive on Cape Cod for a plateful Pumpkin Pancake with whipped cream and syrup and many other choices.
Wherever your choice get out there and enjoy and if you have a favorite spot please feel free to share or a favorite ingredient.
This year is especially tough for there are nine great movies nominated each worthy of the Best Movie Oscar this year and providing me with nine great themes for my evening menu. For the movie Her, I chose Pizza bites because of the carnival scene in which Theodore closed his eyes and ordered a slice of pizza. For this I chose thin stick breads sliced thin and toasted lightly with garlic, butter and cheese served with sides of assorted toppings pepperoni, ground Italian sausage, Italian salsa and pineapple and ham toppings. For Nebraska I chose"runza sandwiches" and beer because it is a pocket sandwich popular in Nebraska and beer was served throughout the movie. For Philomena there will be bite size fruit cakes to symbolize the fruit cake served with tea at the Roscrea convent and a dish of Colcannon which is an Irish dish. Captain Phillips make me feel adrift on the sea with lettuce boats of fruit salsa. For Gravity we are adrift in space and could probably use some round sesame crackers to represent the moon and some great cheese dip. The Wolf of Wall Street was filled with lavish parties and food, so I decided on Steak Bites with a Bloody Mary Dipping Sauce and Salmon Sushi Rolls served with the Champagne of choice. American Hustle brings more Italian inspired foods like Clams Casino and a side of baked Piccata Shrimp and Chicken Piccatta bites all served with Prosecco. My table is overflowing but I can't forget The Dallas Buyers Club which makes me want to serve a crock pot of Cowboy Beans. And last but not least because in 12 Years a Slave the character Northup tried to write a letter using blackberry juice, I decided on mini blackberry cheesecakes. And so goes my Oscar menu and now I am just waiting for the winner.
Hope you enjoy the Oscars!! Click on the links for the Recipes and have fun,
With the temperatures in the twenties, one must look for ways to keep warm and well nourished. So why not look to a nice bowl of chili, whose beginnings were like that of chowder. Recipes are all over the internet and everyone has a secret ingredient and that all depends on how hot you like it. I like my chili mild with just a little heat which can be added with a few pieces of chopped Jalapeño Pepper.
Here on the Cape we have a few great Mexican Restaurants sure to serve great chili if you are not inclined to make your own. In Hyannis there is always Sam Diego's which offers a great lunch special an all you can eat chili, soup and taco bar all for $7.65. You can get a great bowl of "Old School Chili" at Guapo in Brewster. Or if traveling in West Yarmouth stop by Acapulco for Tortilla soup with chicken or chili.
For me its a nice home cooked bowl of chili.
2 tbsp. Extra Virgin Oil
1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
½ green bell pepper, chopped (about ½ cup)
1 Can (4oz) green chiles, minced or chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 lb. ground beef (80% lean)
1 tbsp. chili powder
1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 tbsp. ground cumin
1 can (28 oz.) whole tomatoes, chopped
1 packet Goya Beef Bouillon
1 can (15.5 oz.) Kidney beans, not drained
Shredded Monterey jack cheese (optional)
Sour cream (optional)
Finely chopped white onions (optional)
1. Heat oil in medium, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add onions, peppers, chiles and garlic; cook until vegetables are soft, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Season meat salt and pepper. Add meat to the pot, breaking into small pieces with a wooden spoon. Cook until browned, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Stir in chili powder, cilantro and cumin; cook until fragrant, about 1 minute more.
2. Add 1 cup water, chopped tomatoes (with liquid), and beef bouillon to pot. Bring tomato mixture to boil. Lower heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, until mixture thickens and flavors come together, stirring occasionally, about 1 hour. Stir in beans. Cook until heated through, about 15 minutes more.
3. Divide chili among serving bowls. Garnish with cheese, sour cream and onions, if desired
It serves about 4 and I hope you enjoy!!
Happy Chili Day!!!
Well today let's celebrate the best invention since chicken soup. Creamy goodness with potatoes and chucks of fresh clams sure to cure whatever ails you. Its humble beginnings date back to the early fishermen and their wives who simply needed to feed their family with some of the sea's best bounty. Recipes are often blended and secret ingredients added to enhance that bowl of ocean goodness. Contests and tasting for the best chowder are often unending and the next best recipe is often around the corner. Debates on whether to add tomatoes or a creamy milk base extend through different regions, but nothing tastes as good as a well crafted bowl of clam chowder.
Down here on our island surrounded by water, one can certainly find a chowder to their particular palate and it isn't always the chowder that won the contests through the years. For me its the creamy goodness with delicately sliced cube potatoes and flavorful pieces of clams and my favorite is from Seafood Sam's and Lobster Pot. I have to admit that I do like the Rhode Island Red Chowder of Rocky Point with steaming clam cakes but my favorite is the white creamy chowder of New England. So get out there and celebrate the day with a hot bowl of clam chowder and let me know where I can find a great chowder if you know of one.
If you want a recipe check out this link for an easy recipe and add whatever you like.
It is amazing that we haven't read about more bicycle accidents during the summer and it should be a credit to the drivers who do drive safely out there. Bicyclists have no idea how invisible they are to the drivers out there, until its too late and the headlights reflect on their blackened silhouettes out there. They wear dark clothing, no helmets and nothing reflective to alert a motorist to what lays just a head of them. In the above picture, there are three people on bikes off to the left side. I was stopped and took this picture quickly and just wanted to make the point that all can not be seen and its unsafe.
So bikers be aware and wear that helmet and reflective clothing, it can save your life.