If it's dry add some more oil-the stuffing
should be moist but not soupy. Now
stuff the artichokes.

When done, find a heavy pot that will fit
the artichokes tightly together-a little
trick if the pot is a little to big is to wade
up some aluminum foil and stuff between
the artichokes.  Before you add the
artichokes, pour a little oil into the pot to
keep them from sticking to the bottom of
the pot. Put in the artichokes and add
enough water to cover up the chokes,
about 1 1/2 inches. Put the lid on; if
there is no lid wrap tightly with
aluminum foil.

Start on medium high heat until you see
steam coming from the pot. Then lower
the gas slightly and maintain the simmer
and the steam.  Cook for 40 minutes then
check the chokes by pulling on the leafs
and seeing if it comes out easily. If
not, cook longer until tender,probably
another 20 minutes or so., You must
remember to check the water level. If
the water boils away the artichokes
will burn and thats definitely no good. I
can remember one time  I forgot.  I
was-busy with something else and had a
burnt up mess-Keep and eye on the pot!

When done remove the artichokes from
the pot with a slotted spoon so
leave the liquid behind.  Place on a dish
to cool slightly.  Serve either cold, room
temp or hot-your choice.  You can offer a
lemon wedge to  drizzle over or try my
favorite, balsamic vinaigrette.

Now for the mushrooms.  Get  2 or
3 of the stuffing kind per person   
(sometimes called "silver dollar")
Brush off any dirt from the mushrooms
with a damp towel or a mushroom
brush.  Remove the stems so there is a
whole in the mushroom to put the
stuffing in.

Saute the stems finely diced with some
additional garlic, a clove or two, minced
in butter.  Add to the stuffing used in the
artichoke recipe.  

Melt some butter in a pan and fry the
mushroom caps until slightly browned.
drain  on paper towels- fill the
mushrooms with a nice mound of
stuffing, sprinkle with parmigiana cheese
and bake 350 degrees for 10 minutes.  
Serve with the artichokes

             (continued below)
15 South Orange Avenue
South Orange, NJ 07079
(973) 762-7077
I hope you try these;
they are wonderful!
Remember, you can do this if you
just read the recipe twice
and go slow.

A very Merry Christmas. May the lord
keep you and all you hold dear in this
world safe and happy.
and as always,......remember you can do it!
Just read the recipe twice and go slow
So until the next time we meet and discuss the finer things in life and
love- be well.
Live Long, Love Often,
Be Happy and Eat Well
Cynthia Soboti
Executive Chef
Gaslight Brewery and Restaurant
It's snowing now-November 19th.  Can you believe I
began the day at 3:30 AM.  This is Thanksgiving week
and my baking schedule actually started yesterday-pies,
cakes, cookies and of course the regular stuff like
turkey, stuffing,artichokes, lasagna, antipasto, Brussel
sprouts, mashed and sweet potatoes, cranberry
sauce(homemade - not the stuff in a can).

It's funny how holidays are not the same with out our
memories of the past, especially the memories of people
who are not with us now.  Fortunately all the little things
they did are a part of a family's traditions.  That is what  
allows us to realize their spirit is still here.   I remember
my husband's Aunt Ann-she only fried her meat balls on
Sunday morning.  She made the strongest screwdrivers  
and her green bean casserole, which she made only for
Thanksgiving, was  the best I've ever had.

As the Christmas holiday approaches try to find time to
remember someone who will be alone and invite them to
your table.  All of our lives have become so hectic. The
extra time we have thanks to our modern
should have been used simply to just enjoy life, but
instead we have  filled that time with more and more
work. It seems our lives are even more rushed and
stressful in the new Millennium than ever before. We are
all running fast but to what end? Death? We should live
each day as if it was the last one-enjoy the world we
have and share with each other the comfort of caring.

Enough philosophy-
Lets Cook!

I'm going to take you through the process of
stuffed artichokes and
for 4 people.

4 large unblemished artichokes
2 loaves of country Italian bread
8 cloves of garlic peeled and minced
3/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
2 t. salt
1 t. black pepper
1 t. finely minced sage
1 T. finely minced Italian flat leaf parsley

         (continued below)

Wash and drain the artichokes upside down on
paper towels. Now cut off  the tips of the
leaves that have thew pints-I use a kitchen
scissor. If the artichoke have a stem cut it off
flat so it stands up-now press the leaves back
gently from the top to the bottom just enough
to make room
to put the stuffing between each leaf-starting
at the bottom to stuff the leaves and work your
way to the top. I usually cut the top inch of
the leaves off straight across so the top is also

Only stuff about 1 tsp of stuffing into each leaf.
Stuffing (this will be used for the artichokes
and the mushrooms)

Cut all the brown crust off the bread and give
to the birds. Cut the bread into chunks and put
in a large bowl-cover with water and let rest
for 30 minutes.

Now squeeze all the water out of the bread
and shred it with your fingers into a large
clean bowl-add all the rest of the ingredients
and mix with your clean hands like you would
a meatloaf.  
(continued top of next column)
December 2007