Cranberry Kumquat Sauce

kumquats in sugar waterI love kumquats and if I can use them in a recipe, I will.  It was quite hard to find kumquats but Whole Foods had some ok ones.   This recipe was super easy and delicious. Adapted from Bon Appétit | November 2006

Yield: Makes about 5 cups

  • 2 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 6 ounces fresh kumquats, quartered lengthwise (about 1 generous cup), seeds removed
  • 20 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries (about 5 1/2 cups)
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins

Combine sugar, 2 cups water, and kumquats in large saucepan. Bring to boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until kumquats are almost translucent, about 8 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer kumquats to small bowl. Add cranberries to sugar syrup in pan; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until berries burst, about 7 minutes. Add raisins; simmer until soft, about 4 minutes longer. Transfer cranberry sauce to medium bowl.

Cranberry sauce can be made 5 days ahead.

Just before serving, add kumquats to cranberry sauce.

translucent kumquatscranberries in kumquat flavored sugar watertranslucent kumquats waiting for cranberry sauceThe yummy sauce!

Lemony Zucchini, Yellow Squash and Onion Stir Fry

Nicely cut squash

I really love zucchini and squash in general.  I usually just stir fry really quick with a little lemon zest and salt and pepper. But I found this stuff at Penzey's that I thought I would try and it is really good. It's called Trinidad Style Lemon-Garlic Marinade, which is actually a mix of  coarse salt, lemon peel, garlic, clove and ginger.  It's great on veges and also fish and is a nice sprinkle to go with when you are out of ideas.  This recipe is just super simple and something I made up.

  • 8 small (baby) zucchini and yellow squash cut into half moons
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • Trinidad Marinade (Penzey's)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Stir fry in a nice big pan with tall sides

Serve with fish, steak, chicken or pork....It goes with everything.


Lemony zucchini and onions




Ukrainian sauerkraut with mushroom sauce or Kapusta

Pronounced: [kah-POOS-tah].  kapusta simply refers to this plain sauerkraut. But in many Ukrainian homes, the kapusta base is frequently amplified with a mix of mushrooms and onions, and that is what is meant by the term kapusta. This is my mom's recipe and one of my families' most favorite dish for the holidays. We made this every holiday and if we didn't there would be hell to pay.  It is simply the most simple dish with loads of flavor.  If you love cooked cabbage you will love this even more!


  • 1 stick of butter
  • enough flour to make a roux
  • Add milk to make a white sauce
  • ¼ tsp thyme
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • salt  and pepper to taste
  • 2 packages/jars of  sauerkraut (pickled)
  • 2 packages of sliced mushrooms

To desalt sauerkraut (this is really important or it won't taste good):

Drain and wash sauerkraut

Put sauerkraut in a pot with water and boil for about 5-10 minutes

Drain and rinse

Add new water to the pot and boil for 5-10 minutes

Drain again.

While the kraut is boiling:

Saute 2 packages of sliced mushrooms in butter  just enough to soften but not caramelized. 

To the twice drained (and desalted) sauerkraut:

Add the above white sauce and mushrooms to the drained sauerkraut

Cook over medium heat until done. Salt and pepper to taste.

My mom always boiled or fried 4-5 inch pieces of kabasi (kielbasa) and placed on the top of the kapusta for presentation. 

This is probably one of my most favorite Ukrainian dishes next to pierogies (Polish dialect) or pyrohy (Ukrainian dialect).




Desalting the sauerkraut-The key to good kapusta