Recipes

Ellie's Recipes

If you are visiting our website Recipes section for the 1st time, you might ask "Why food"? Well aside from being driven by great music, in building relationships with musicians all around the world we have found other traits we all share, a keen interest in good food. Over the years we have enjoyed great cook-offs here in the shop, where our crew prepared creative and competitive dishes built on a prime ingredient (like the one where everything revolved around bacon, even the desert).

We have also hosted some grand parties for our builders during the NAMM shows, providing a feast for more than 50 people in one evening. All of this driven by the talents of our resident chef & crew member Ellie. She is a remarkable cook and food critic, who has traded recipes with clients all over the world. In celebration of those relationships, we hereby devote this section of our website to some of her best recipes. Enjoy!

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Spectacular Salsa

Introduction: 

We love salsa at our house. We like it on tacos, eggs, steaks, chicken and well, anything you can put it on! A salsa to live up to all these things isn't just any salsa; it's a homemade spectacular salsa. It's too easy to make, just get it going while you are doing dishes or making a meal. This is going to be better after it sits for a few hours so make it ahead of time. I make it in the morning and the house smells amazing all day long. Don't be afraid of the peppers. Experiment with different kinds. Behind the heat, pepper flavors are all different. We love the flavor of Serrano peppers more than jalapeno peppers, but they can be really hot. I plant peppers ever year in the garden. The first few I pick are not really hot. The longer they stay on the vine, and the later in the year the hotter they are. You will see that I have three peppers in this recipe. Sometimes it only takes one, but I cook three and add one at a time depending on how hot they are. If your gang likes it hot, make more and add them up to the level y'all can stand. Don't worry about the garlic, it will become nice and nutty and loose its spiciness during cooking.

 

Ellie's southern sausage gravy

Introduction: 

Though I was raised in the north, having been born in the south, there was nothing like my grandmother's white gravy made with milk and bacon grease growing up as a child. Well, when Ellie and I married & moved to the south, she brought her northern cooking skills to bear on a traditional recipe, and made it her own.

Eggs In Purgatory

Introduction: 

This is a great Brunch Recipie.  Or, one that you can make for dinner.  Plus, if you start your day with this great smell in the kitchen, you will have a wonderful day.  At least that's how it is at our house!!

Here is the picture of the eggs cooking in the frying pan.  We ate it too quickly to get a photo on the plate.  We'll do it again soon....

Ellie's Pizzelles

Introduction: 

Pizzelle cookies have been a part of the holiday tradition since our youth, and a delightful welcome to any Italian festivities. To create these anise flavored marvels, you will need a pizzelle iron. Older irons can make a large single cookie 9" in diameter (these are hard to find).
Modern versions have a cooking surface with 2 smaller cookies about 4" in diameter.

Oven Roasted Provence Tomatoes

Introduction: 

These tomatoes are a favorite at all our parties. I sincerely can not make enough of them. I warn you – they are addictive! They are absolutely the best when tomatoes are in season and super ripe. However, even under ripe tomatoes can be spectacular done this way. Note: that if the tomatoes are store bought, and not as ripe, they will take longer to cook. If you are in a hurry - use a few boxes of grape tomatoes - they just need to be cut in 1/2.  (We don't remove the seeds, but you can.) 

This is a method you will want to experiment with to get tomatoes the way you like them. A little less time and they will be chewier because they are more moist. A little more time and the flavor will be more concentrated. As this is a slow cook method you don’t need to use fresh herbs (they are going to dry out anyway!).

Ellie’s Favorite Bacon and Mushroom Stuffing and Dressing

Introduction: 

Stuffing and Dressing are the same wonderful concoction – it just depends on how you use it. We love it by whatever name you call it. For years we put it in the Turkey, that is, until we got a convection oven. Convection ovens cook the bird quicker and moister! I grew up with bread stuffing and this recipe is an embellished version of my mother’s recipe. Adding bacon and Mushrooms to anything makes it better!! I've also made this recipe using cornbread instead of white bread for Bill's family, and they loved it too.

 

Smoked Salmon Pate

Introduction: 

Delicious and easy to make, this recipe is a staple for large gatherings of friends and family.

Ellie's End of Busy Day Penne with Vodka Sauce

Introduction: 

Some Vodka sauces are too hot for folks at our house. I know a lot of the flavor comes from those red pepper flakes, so I put on my apron and found a compromise. This version is not as hot but just as flavorful. It's also quick and easy making it perfect to make after a busy day here at the store. I've added one clove of garlic and a pinch of basil at the end. Both items are not "traditional" but I love layers of flavor.

And don't worry, if you are not a Vodka drinker and therefore without a ready bottle in the freezer, just pick up a couple of those airplane bottles and keep on hand for this. You will be burning the alcohol off so kids are able to eat this as well. Write and tell us how you liked this. We love hearing from you. Read to the end for what to serve with it for a complete meal.

Herbed Ricotta Spread

Introduction: 

I made this for a party and it was just wonderful and addictive. It is even better made with home-made ricotta (tons of easy recipes on the internet) but it is so easy with store bought. If you are buying store bought, look for a local source and only use the whole milk version. Serve it on wheat crackers or toasted bread. Read the end of the recipe for more ideas on how to use!

Cranberry Tangerine Relish

Introduction: 

Too bad we have so many favorite dishes at our house, that we forget about this one until Thanksgiving each year!

Chicken Picatta

Introduction: 

This is one of our favorite meals. Makes us feel like a restaurant meal! The capers really accentuate the lemon and chicken is a perfect backdrop for these delightful fruits.

BBQ'd Potato Wedges

Introduction: 

During the Summer this is our favorite way to make potatoes on the grill. When we get a craving for these outside of summer we make them in a really hot 450 degree oven.

Ellie's BBQ Potato Wedges

Blue Cheese Dressing

Introduction: 

Turn your home-made salad into a 5 star gourmet dish. My favorite is on a wedge of Iceberg, topped with chopped egg and chopped bacon. YUM.

Ellie's Pasta Salad

Introduction: 

This is a family tradition that has been in our house for 31 years. It actually began as a personal recipe from Bill's bachelor days and Ellie tweaked it just a bit.  This is a favorite amongst guests, regardless of what you serve it with, and we often double the recipe to take advantage of left overs.  We have one friend Rachel who insists we make it for her birthday every year!!

Italian Steak Salad for 2

Introduction: 

On sultry summer nights when we really don't feel like cooking this is one of our favorite dinners.  One steak will generously make two salads.   Bill and W.T. LOVE this one.  And with the price of beef rising - this is a great way to splurge on a good steak.

Ellie's Italian Steak Salad

 

Sue's Beef Cheese Ball

Introduction: 

Great for parties and gatherings!

Rustic Lemon Chicken

Introduction: 

You can't beat this for savory flavor - so don't hold back on the garlic, please! The garlic gets soft and creamy and nutty when it is baked.  As such, even someone who is afraid of garlic falls in love after one bite. Note also that this recipe calls for chicken breasts on the bone with their skin on.  You can also make this with a cut up whole chicken, or other chicken parts.  If using smaller parts you need to cut the breasts to similar size for uniform cooking.  You can ask the store butcher to do this for you. 

Ellie's Broccoli Soup

Introduction: 

When it's chilly there is nothing like warming up with a nice bowl of piping hot soup.  It instantly takes the chill out of a cool evening.

Ellie's Broccoli Soup

Pasta e Fagioli

Introduction: 

Thanks to Ellie's incredible cooking this traditional Italian bean soup is a food staple at our house, & perfect for a cool evening dinner.

Ellie's Pasta e Fagioli