Jun 252016

Natalie’s pasta salad  is a group favorite at summer gatherings. She gets lots of requests for it, and it keeps well in the summer heat.

Natalie’s Pasta Salad

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes


  • 1 (16 ounce) package tri-colored rotini pasta
  • ½ Bottle McCormick’s Salad Supreme (2.62 oz. bottle)
  • 1 small bottle (8 oz.) Viva Seven Seas Italian Dressing
  • 3 tomatoes (chopped) or 1 lb. grape tomatoes halved or quartered.
  • 1 large cucumber (peeled, seeded and & diced)
  • 7 green onions (chopped)
  • Fresh grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Cook pasta and drain.
  2. Chop vegetables while the pasta is cooking.
  3. Mix all ingredients together.
  4. Top with fresh grated Parmesan cheese.
  5. Refrigerate for an hour or so to let flavors blend.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmailby feather
Jun 192016

This recipe has been very popular to those who have tried it, so I feel compelled to add one more Hummus recipe to the website. I’m not sure that it is technically Hummus as it is made from Cannelini beans and not Garabanzo beans, but I’ll leave the arguments to the connoisseurs of correctness. The Rosemary gives this Hummus quite a different flavor than the traditional ones and we like it especially with vegetables even though it is very good with Pita bread. Another selection for my growing list of vegetarian friends.

Roasted Garlic & Rosemary Hummus


  • 2 cans Cannelini beans
  • 12 Cloves of garlic, basically a whole head
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 or 4 sprigs of fresh Rosemary
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Dash of Cayenne pepper to taste
  • Salt to taste


  1. Peel the garlic cloves and cut in half.
  2. Put the olive oil and garlic in a small frying pan and cook uncovered over medium heat until the garlic starts turning golden brown. (About 5 to 7 minutes)
  3. Remove from heat and let cool.
  4. Rinse the Cannelini beans an place in food processor.
  5. Remove the Rosemary leaves from the stem and add to the food processor.
  6. Add the salt, lemon juice and Cayenne pepper.
  7. When the garlic and oil have cooled, add them to the food processor.
  8. Process until the mixture is smooth, adding a little water if it is too thick.
  9. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmailby feather
Dec 132015
Helen Kun Karney, Circa 1925

Helen Kun Karney
circa 1925

My paternal Grandmother, Helen Kun Karney, immigrated to the United States at the tender age of 16, in 1901. She married my grandfather, Steven Karney in 1904; they both came from the same town in Hungary, Battyan.  Dios (‘dee-oshe) or Nut Roll is a Hungarian Christmas tradition, and I’ll never know if she carried a hand-written recipe with her on the boat from Europe, or if she created it from memory, but the recipe remains over 100 years later.

Grandma Karney’s recipe was passed on to me through my mother who used it to make the nut roll I remember so well. Although, I’m sure I watched my mother make it (and probably licked the bowl that contained the sugar and walnut filling,) I had never prepared it on my own until recently. I still use the same Wearever #918 aluminum pan that my mother used, and it perfectly holds the four rolls that that this timeless recipe makes.  I recently purchased a second pan on Ebay. They haven’t been made in a long time, but if you can find one on Ebay, it will last for many generations. Nutroll freezes well, so while you are at it, make a couple of batches.

Mom’s Nut Roll (Dios)

Mom’s Nut Roll (Dios)


  • 2 sticks unsalted butter or margarine
  • 2 pkg. dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 4 to 5 cups of flour
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • Filling
  • 2 lb. ground walnuts
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 scant cup of sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla


  1. Make a leaven of 1/4 cup of warm water, 1 tsp. sugar and the yeast. Set aside.
  2. Melt the butter and mix with the sour cream, sugar, 2 cups of flour and finally the egg yolks.
  3. The mixture should be cool or only slightly warm. Now you can add the yeast mixture and knead in the rest of the flour until the mixture is about the consistency of soft bread dough.
  4. Knead until smooth. If the dough has a layered look and won't hold together, knead in a little water until the dough is smooth and cohesive.
  5. Divide into 4 parts and refrigerate covered overnight.
  6. Mix together walnuts, egg whites, sugar and vanilla to make filling.
  7. Roll out each piece of dough into a rectangle the length of your pan.
  8. Spread with 1/4 of the walnut filling.
  9. Roll up jelly roll style.
  10. Butter the baking pan lightly.
  11. Put the 4 rolls in a baking pan and let rise in a warm place, covered, for 2 hours.
  12. Bake at 350F for about 45 minutes.
  13. Cool and slice.


If you have trouble rolling out the dough or if it tears, your dough is too dry.It's better to err on the side of too soft, rather than too dry.

I use Ceresota all-purpose flour in my recipe. Other flours may have more or less moisture, so adjust the amount for a soft, but not sticky dough.

I usually cut the rolls in half crosswise, wrap them in foil and refrigerate until needed. Then I slice the larger piece into 1/2 in slices for serving. It dries out less than if you pre-slice the whole thing.

For freezing, wrap in foil and then seal in air-tight freezer bag.


Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmailby feather
Dec 122015

Kifli is another Hungarian Christmas tradition that I remember well, and they were always my favorite of the Christmas cookies.  Growing up, we called them Kiffles, which is the anglicized version of Kifli.

I had never made them until long after my mother was gone, and reclaiming the recipe was not easy as my mother had about 10 different recipes from my aunts and other relatives. She had one labeled “My own special recipe”, that had graham cracker crumbs in at and some other things not in the other recipes, and I’m sure were not in the Kifli that I remember.

After a few years of experimentation with the different recipes and many failures, I finally settled on this one which produces Kifli closest to what I recall, and adjusted the recipe slightly in December 2014.

Kifli – Hungarian Cookies

Prep Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 35 minutes

Yield: 96 Kifli

Kifli – Hungarian Cookies


  • 4 to 4 ½ Cups Flour
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 Sticks butter
  • 1 Cup Sour Cream
  • Filling
  • 1 lb. Ground Walnuts (Approx 4 cups)
  • 1 1/2 Cup Sugar
  • 2 tsp butter
  • 1/3 Cup milk
  • 3/4 tsp. vanilla


  1. For the dough, melt the butter and mix till dough forms a soft ball.
  2. Divide into 8 balls and refrigerate overnight, or at least a couple of hours.
  3. Let the dough warm up and soften a bit, then, one by one, roll each of the 8 balls into a 9 inch circle.
  4. Spread 1/8 of filling on the rplled out dough, leaving about 1/4" of the edge uncovered..
  5. Using serrated pastry cutter, cut each round into fourths and each of the fourths into thirds, pizza style.
  6. Roll each piece toward the center, crescent roll style and place on ungreased baking sheet.
  7. Brush with egg-white if desired.
  8. Bake at 350 for 15 minutes or until the Kifli just start to lightly brown. The secret is to not overbake. If the filling is oozing out and turning dark brown or burning, you are baking too long.
  9. Dust with powdered sugar before serving.


Kifli can also be filled with fruit butter or preserves. Apricot would be often used or Lekvar, a Hungarian prune butter.


Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmailby feather
Dec 112015

This is an easy recipe, I came up with it after having something similar at the Tapas Restaurant, La Tasca. It is best if you make it a day ahead so the flavors get to blend. This is one of the things I always make for Christmas Eve. And I usually make enough that we have it as a side dish for Christmas brunch.


Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes


  • 1 Large red onions.
  • 2 28 oz. cans diced or whole roma tomatoes, drained and slightly rinsed. You can use the equivalent amount of very ripe fresh Roma tomatoes. Avoid supermarket tomatoes.
  • 1/3 c Olive oil
  • 1/3 c Balsamic vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp fresh bbasil
  • 2 tsp. dried Italian seasoning.
  • 1 tsp. granulated garlic
  • Salt to taste


  1. Dice the onions and tomatoes if using whole ones, and mix with the basil.
  2. Whisk together the olive oil and balsamic vinegar and pour over the vegetables.
  3. Serve on sliced fresh Italian bread or Crostini. It's even better if you brush the bread with garlic and olive oil and grill it or stick it under the broiler for a few minutes


I revised the recipe recently to use canned tomatoes, because the tomatoes available in stores, especially in the winter, are usually hard and tasteless, The only way I would use fresh tomatoes is if they were very ripe and from my own garden or a good farmer's market.


Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestmailby feather