- My Guilty Pleasureby jmdg1954
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My Guilty Pleasure by jmdg1954
My Guilty Pleasure contest entry




When asked about a guilty pleasure, I can hover between Rocky Road ice cream and my wife’s homemade cheesecake. Think about it…

A bowl of ice cream and a mountain of homemade whipped cream piled on top, with wet walnuts skiing down its slopes, bumping into sprinkles along the way.       


A slice of a three inch high, creamy cheesecake with a warm cherry compote topping, and enough cherry syrup to ooze over the edges of the cheese cake, creating a puddle on your dish.

Are those guilty or what?

Let’s put those aside for the moment. What else gives me euphoric satisfaction?

I'll never say no to a grilled burger. Today, let’s prepare a six-ounce, carmelized onion stuffed burger patty, cooked to perfection on a charcoal grill, served on a charcoal grill toasted brioche bun, with melted Gruyère, and a thick slice of a beefsteak tomato from one of my gardens plants, still warm from the suns rays. No condiments allowed! I don’t want to detract from these rich, wholesome flavors! This my friend, is a three napkin burger.


A juicy, grilled boneless pork loin stuffed with fig, goat cheese and pistachios. In a small bowl, I combine a 4oz log of goat cheese, crumbled and one cup of pistachios coarsely blended in a food processor. I will grab and slice five fresh figs off my fig tree. After I butterfly the loin, I season it with salt & pepper, spread the goat cheese/pistachio crumble across the meat, then lay the fig slices on top, gently roll the loin and tie it. Rub the outside of the loin with olive oil, add salt and pepper and it’s ready to grill, medium heat to an inside temp at 145 degrees. Moist, mouthwatering and engratiating your sense of smell and taste.

Let’s step into the kitchen to prepare a sandwich, simple and modest made with Italian frying peppers (small sweet peppers that have elongated finger size shape) and provolone cheese.

First, put a loaf of Italian bread in the oven at its lowest setting (mine is 170 degrees) to warm.

Place a thin coating of olive oil in a large sauté pan, and cook over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, place the Italian frying peppers in the pan, stem included. Add salt and pepper to your taste. Listen to the sizzle and pop of the peppers skin as they kiss the olive oil.

Continue to sauté and toss in the pan for approximately five to eight minutes. When the peppers are no longer crisp, have a little char on the skin, and look deflated, they are ready. 

  • Remove from heat and pull the stems from the peppers and discard. 
  • Cut the loaf of bread in half lengthwise.
  • Using extra sharp Aurecchio provolone, thinly slice it and place on the bottom half of the bread. Remember, there is no such thing as too much Aurecchio. 
  • Layer the peppers on top of the provolone, be sure to get the oil from the pan as well.
  • Any remaining oils can be spooned to the other half of the bread.

Close the sandwich, cut and eat, Che bello, (how lovely). For a little heat or kick, add two Italian long hot peppers to the batch.

To further enlighten your taste buds, add any of the following to the sandwich:

  • Thinly sliced prosciutto di Parma
  • Grilled chicken breast marinated in fresh garlic, salt/pepper, and lemon zest
  • Grilled Italian, fennel sausage

These my friends, are a few of my … 







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