Orange, Fennel & Olive Salad (Serves 4 to 6)

2 cps mixed olives (Kalamata, Piccoline, Nicoise, etc.)
2 oz. capers, drained
1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 Tbs. julienned orange zest
1/2 tsp. fennel seeds, crushed
1 clove garlic, sliced

Method:

Combine all ingredients and allow to marinate overnight.




Cannelli Bean & Red Onion Salad (Serves 4 to 6)

2 12 oz. can cannelli beans
1/2 cp. thinly sliced red onion
1/4 cp. Italian parsley
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1-2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
2 oz. olive oil

Method:

Combine all ingredients and allow to marinate overnight.




Sliced Tomato, Basil & Buffalo Mozzarella Salad
(Serves 4 to 6)

2 lbs. vine-ripened tomatoes (about 4 large tomatoe), sliced thickly
1 lb. fresh mozzarella, sliced thickly
1/4 cp. fresh basil
3 to 4 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt to taste
Freshly ground pepper

Method:

1. Arrange tomato & mozzarella slices, alternating pieces, on a large serving dish.

2. Drizzle the olive oil on top of the cheese and tomatoes.

3. Chiffonade the basil and sprinkle on top of the slices.

4. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.





Grilled Tri Color Peppers with Rosemary & Thyme
(Serves 4 to 6)

2 red bell peppers
2 yellow bell peppers
2 green bell peppers
3 to 4 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt to taste
Freshly ground pepper
2 to 3 sprigs fresh thyme
1 to 2 sprigs fresh rosemary

Method:

1. Over a gas or electric grill, char-grill peppers.

2. Remove the herbs from their stems and chop coarsely.

3. When cool, slice the peppers into strips.

4. Toss the peppers with the olive oil, salt and pepper, and sprinkle with herbs.





Caponata & Fontina Sandwiches on Sliced Ciabatta
(Serves 4 to 6)

2 cps. peeled eggplant, cubed , salted & dried
4 Tbs. olive oil
1 cp. chopped onion
1/2 cp. chopped green bell pepper
1/2 cp. chopped red bell pepper
3/4 cp. chopped celery
2 cps. canned plum tomatoes, drained & juices reserved
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1 Tbs. minced fresh garlic
1 Tbs. minced parsley
1/2 cp. pitted Kalamata olives
2 Tbs. capers, drained
salt & pepper to taste

1/2 lb. sliced Fontina Cheese
1 loaf Ciabatta bread, sliced horizontally

Method:

1. Saute the eggplant in 1/2 the olive oil in a large sauce pot.

2. Remove the eggplant from the pot and add the remaining olive oil.

3. Saute the onion, peppers, and celery until soft.

4. Add the sauteed eggplant, tomatoes, garlic, capers, and seasonings.

5. Simmer until tender, about 45 minutes. If the mixture starts to stick, add some of the reserved tomato juice.

6. Place in the refrigerator to cool.

7. To construct the sandwich, place a generous amount of caponata on the sliced bread & layer with Fontina slices. Place the top of the bread on the sandwich, and using a serrated knife, slice into 2 inch pieces.





Heidi's Hazelnut Biscotti & Fresh Mission Figs
(Serves 4 to 6)

1 package Heidi's chocolate dipped hazelnut biscotti
3 ripe mission figs
1/4 lb. gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

Method:

1. Slice figs into quarters.

2. Arrange biscotti, figs, and crumbled cheese on tray and serve.