Potluck: so many fine dishes to offer


November 07, 2007|By Liz Atwood | Liz Atwood,Sun reporter

Crowd-Pleasing Potluck

By Francine Halvorsen

Park Avenue Potluck

By Florence Fabricant and the Society of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center

Rizzoli / 2007 / $35

Peek inside the recipe boxes of some of New York's society mavens, many of whom donated their recipes to this book. For those of us cooking in Baltimore, it's a comfort to know that the upper crust of the Big Apple aren't serving potluck dinners much different from ours (although they do seem to have nicer silverware). While there are hoity-toity recipes like Rainbow Goat Cheese Terrine, there is a surprising number of more down-to-earth items, like the Sweet-and-Sour Meatloaf, which my family devoured. The red-wine vinegar, Dijon mustard and brown sugar imparted the promised sweet-and-sour flavor, but were not overpowering.

Just as homey and good was the Crowd-Pleasing Sour Cream-Walnut Cake. This cinnamon-and-walnut cake could as easily be served at a breakfast buffet as on a dinner dessert table.

The recipes are not difficult, and a portion of the proceeds of the book goes to support the Society of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, which helps Sloan-Kettering patients and their families.


Sausage-and-Peppers Pasta Casserole

-- Serves 10

5 tablespoons olive oil (divided use)

1 1/2 pounds Italian sausage (sweet, hot or a combination), cut into 1-inch pieces

2 red bell peppers, cored and sliced

2 green bell peppers, cored and sliced

2 large onions, sliced

1 can (28 ounces) roasted or regular diced tomatoes

1 can (6 ounces) tomato paste

1 1/2 cups water

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon dried rosemary

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1 pound penne pasta, cooked al dente and drained

1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Heat 3 tablespoons of the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook the sausage until brown, about 10 minutes. Remove the sausage from the skillet and set aside.

Place the red and green bell peppers and onions in the skillet and saute until the onions are transparent and golden brown, about 10 minutes. Return the reserved sausage to the skillet and add the tomatoes, tomato paste, water, oregano, thyme, rosemary and black pepper. Mix very well. Cook and stir for 5 minutes over low heat.

In a bowl large enough to hold all the ingredients, stir the penne with the remaining oil. Stir in the sausage-and-peppers mixture. At this point, the mixture can be covered and refrigerated for up to 24 hours.

To serve: Transfer the mixture to a casserole and bake until piping hot and the sausage is cooked through, about 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with cheese.

From "Crowd-Pleasing Potluck"

Per serving: 416 calories, 16 grams protein, 18 grams fat, 5 grams saturated fat, 48 grams carbohydrate, 5 grams fiber, 22 milligrams cholesterol, 688 milligrams sodium

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