Cheryl’s Cuisine: August 2019


By Cheryl Radkiewicz

The Lehigh Valley Food and Wine Festival recently celebrated its 10th year.   The ballroom at the former Sands Casino in Bethlehem, now Wind Creek Bethlehem, was jammed over three days with thousands of guests savoring the best of the valley’s restaurants.  Imagine entering a vast expanse surrounded by restaurants and wineries.  

I remember the first time I attended a food and wine event many years ago. Overwhelmed by my surroundings.  I distinctly remember calling my sister and saying, “Barb, this must be what heaven is like.” I guess for a “foodie,” this is heaven.

The Lehigh Festival did not disappoint,  it never does.  

I’ll walk you through just some of the dishes served to guests:  Emeril’s Chop House: Goat Cheese Beignets, Roasted Pork Loin and Taco “al Pastor”;   Hellertown Bakery: Lemon, Blueberry Ginger Trifle; Steel Club: Shrimp Gumbo and Banh Mi Taco;  Hampton Winds: Hatfield Pulled Pork Sliders, Southern Peach Tea and Mudslide Cookies; Buddy V’s:   Spinach and Roasted Garlic Ravioli with Miniature Grandma’s Meatballs and Orange Pistachio Cannoli; Paxos:   YellowFin Tuna Tartare and Orange Chocolate Tulip with Gianduja Mousse; Emeril’s Burgers and More: Chicken Fried Steak, Bourbon Brownie Milkshake; Emeril’s Fish House:  Seared Gulf Shrimp with Kimchee and Fried Rice and Coconut Cream Pie in a Cone; Greene Marketplace: Red Wine Meatballs and Strawberry

Cheryl's Cuisine

Chef Chris Wilson

Bruschetta Toast; Maxim’s 22: Negroni Ice Cream; Passanante’s Home Food Services:   Cilantro Lime Chicken; Revel Social: Tropical Braised Short Ribs and Tender-Roasted Pork Belly; Sette Luna: Sardinian Fregola with Grilled Wild Ramps and local Spring veggies; Sodexo: Shrimp in White Wine Sauce over Homemade Pasta; Steelworks:   Bacon Mac and Cheese and Creole Seafood Gumbo.  

Chef Chris Wilson, Culinary Director of Emeril Lagasse’s Homebase in New Orleans, who oversees culinary operations at all of Lagasse’s restaurants as Chief Culinary Officer, delighted guests with his cooking demonstration and sense of humor.   

It was standing room only for his  program where guests were treated to tastes of his delectable dishes.  They were absolutely luscious and I would be remiss if I didn’t share them with my readers, so ENJOY!

Pork Schnitzel with Creamy Shitake Mushroom Sauce:

3 eggs
1/4 cup milk
1Four shiitake mushrooms in pairs of two on white background cup fine dry bread crumbs
1 lb. pork loin cutlets, pounded to 1/8″ thickness
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. fresh ground white pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
5 Tbsp. cold unsalted butter
1/2 lb. shitake mushrooms, stems removed, caps sliced
1 cup leek, fine diced, white part only
2 cloves garlic, sliced
2/3 cup white wine
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup chicken stock or low-sodium broth
2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme leaves
1/2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
1 1/2 Tbsp. chopped parsley
4 lemon wedges
Dab of mustard

Preheat oven to 200 degrees F.  Combine eggs and milk, whisk to combine.  Place bread crumbs in a separate dish. Season pork cutlets with 1 tsp. salt and white pepper.  Dredge cutlets in the egg

and milk mixture, let excess drip off.  Dredge in the bread crumbs and set aside.  Heat oil in 14″ saute’ pan over medium high heat.  Add 1 Tbsp. butter and heat until foam subsides. Add 1/2 of the breaded cutlets ( do not overcrowd the pan) and cook until cutlets are browned on both sides, approximately 1 1/2 minutes per side.  Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to drain; transfer cutlets to a baking sheet and place in oven to keep warm while you cook the remaining cutlets. Repeat with an additional tablespoon of butter and the remaining cutlets.  

Discard any oil remaining in the skillet when done and wipe skillet to remove any browned bits.  Add remaining 3 Tbsp. butter to the pan and when foam subsides, add mushrooms and cook for 1-2 minutes per side until mushrooms are golden brown and liquid has evaporated.  Add leeks and garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add white wine and cook until reduced by half. Add heavy cream, chicken stock and thyme. Reduce slightly until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, approximately 2-3 minutes.  Season with remaining 1/2 tsp. salt and black pepper and a dab of mustard. Stir well.  

Divide schnitzel between four plates and spoon mushroom sauce over each portion.  Garnish with chopped parsley and a lemon wedge to serve immediately.


dark-horse-brut-roseDuck Breasts with Cherries and Rosé Sparkling Wine Reduction

4 boneless skinless duck breast halves (6 oz. approx.)
Salt, black pepper
Emeril’s Essence Creole Seasoning
1/2 cup finely chopped shallots or yellow onions
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 cup Brut Rose Sparkling Wine
1/2 cup duck or chicken stock
1/2 cup dried cherries
1 Tbsp. honey
1 1/2 tsp. fresh thyme
2 Tbsp. cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 Tbsp. toasted, skinned, chopped hazelnuts, as garnish

Score the fatty side of the duck breasts and lightly season with salt, pepper and Essence on both sides.   Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add duck breasts and sear on the fatty side for 4 minutes. Turn and cook on the other side for 2 minutes for medium-rare.   Remove from skillet and cover to keep warm.

Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat from the pan.  Add shallots and garlic and cook, stirring for 1 minute.  Add wine, stock, cherries, honey and thyme and bring to a simmer, stirring to scrape up any bits clinging to the bottom of the pan.  Cook ;until cherries are plump and liquid is reduced to a thick sauce, about 4 minutes. Add butter in pieces, stirring constantly to incorporate.  Adjust seasoning to taste. Return duck breasts to pan with any accumulated juices and cook over low heat until warmed through, about 1 minute.  

Transfer to 4 serving plates and spoon sauce and cherries over each portion.  Garnish with toasted nuts. Add additional ingredients and serve.


Cherries Jubilee

1 stick butter
1 cup sugar
1 lb. Bing cherries, pitted
1 orange, juice and zest
1/2 vanilla bean, scraped
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
2 Tbsp. water
1/2 cup Cherry Brandy (Kirsch)
1 pint Vanilla Ice Cream

Melt  butter over medium heat in a large sauce pan.  Stir in sugar and cook until dissolved. Add orange juice, zest, vanilla and cook until syrup thickens  slightly, abut 2-3 minutes. In a small cup, stir cornstarch and water forming a slurry. Stir slurry into cherry mixture and cook until thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon (2-3 min.).  Pour brandy over cherries. Place pan back on heat and carefully shake pan to ignite the pan. Use a match to flame cherries (if needed), cook until alcohol evaporates and sauce thickens.  

Divide ice cream between four bowls. Spoon cherry mixture over ice cream and serve.

Cheryl’s Cuisine: July 2019

cheryl's Cuisine pic 1

Chef Chris Wilson, Chef Emeril Lagasse and Chef Victor Bock work together during the recent 10th Anniversary Food and Wine Event. Wilson is Lagasse’s Culinary Director and Bock is the Executive Chef at the Sands (now Wind Creek Hospitality).

By Cheryl Radkiewicz

The Sands Casino in Bethlehem recently celebrated its 10th Annual Lehigh Valley Food and Wine Festival with three days of celebrity appearances by renowned Chef Emeril Lagasse amid news that the Casino has been sold and will undergo a massive expansion including hotels and adventure and water parks making it the Number One Resort Destination in the Northeast.  

The sale from Las Vegas Sands Corporation to an affiliate of Alabama’s Poarch Band of Creek Indians was finalized the day before the event and will be renamed Wind Creek Bethlehem. This news added to the celebration for not only Sands employees, but also to the “over capacity” crowd which packed the Event Center for the  Mardi Gras -themed celebration.

Festival Chairs lauded Chef Emeril Lagasse for his talent and generosity in working with the Sands, where he owns three restaurants,  (Emeril’s Chop House, Emeril’s Fish House, and Burgers by Emeril) and supporting students from the Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management Program of Northampton County Community College.  Thus far, the festival has raised over $1.75 million to support the NCC Foundation. Scholarship winners each year are afforded the opportunity to do their externships at Emeril’s New Orleans’ restaurants, Emeril’s, NOLA, Emeril’s Delmonico and Meril.  

Chef Emeril held a cooking demonstration to a standing-room only crowd with some of his new favorite dishes.  Having never tried Vietnamese cuisine, it was my first and a delightful one, at that. If you’re ever offered the opportunity, don’t pass it up…you’ll be pleasantly surprised.  Even though all were absolutely delicious, rave reviews were offered for the Fettucine Nero and Chayote Soup.  

Vietnamese Shrimp & Pork Spring Rolls:

1 lb. pork tenderloin, trimmed
1 shallot, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp. Vietnamese fish sauce (nuoc nam)

cheryl's cuisine pic 2

Shown are Vietnamese Shrimp and Pork Spring Rolls, Vermicelli Noodles, Charred Chayote Soup with Adobe Shrimp, and Fettuccine Nero, three dishes demonstrated by Chef Emeril’s Lagasse at the 10th Anniversary Leigh Valley Food and Wine Festival in Bethlehem.

1 Tbsp. sugars 
Black pepper
8 cups water
1 lemon, halved
1 Tbsp. fine salt
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. concentrated crab boil
1 lb. large shrimp
3.75 oz. (1 pkg. fine rice vermicelli (bun)
1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded and julienned
1 medium carrot, peeled and julienned
2 cups romaine lettuce, chiffonade
24 mint leaves
24 cilantro leaves
24 Thai basil leaves
1 1/2 Tbsp. Hoisin sauce
Spring Roll wrappers
Nuoc Leo (Vietnamese Peanut Sauce) for serving

Place pork tenderloin in bowl with shallot, garlic, fish sauce, sugar and black pepper.  Cover with plastic wrap and marinate, turning occasionally, at least 1 hour or up to overnight in the refrigerator.  Preheat grill to high. Grill tenderloin, turning occasionally, until just cooked through, about 8-10 minutes (145 degrees internal temperature on thermometer).  Transfer tenderloin to plate and set aside to cool to room temperature before proceeding. Once cooled, slice tenderloin into 1/8″ thick slices and set aside, covered and refrigerated, until you are ready to assemble the spring rolls.  

 In medium saucepan over high heat add the 8 cups water, squeeze the lemon and add it to the pot.  Season with salt and cayenne pepper and the crab boil. Bring liquid to a boil. Add shrimp to the water and cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Transfer shrimp to an ice water bath until cool. Peel shrimp and slice in half horizontally.  

Prepare rice vermicelli according to package directions and strain in colander.  Run under cold running water until cool and set aside to drain.

Assemble rolls 1 at a time: Dip 1 spring roll rapper into lukewarm water and quickly transfer to a clean kitchen towel.  Wrapper will soften within seconds. Lay 4 shrimp halves in a horizontal line across the center of each wrapper and top with a few tablespoons of cooked (well-drained) vermicelli.  Top vermicelli with a handful of cucumber, 2 Tbsp. of the shredded romaine, 4 mint leaves, 2 sprigs cilantro, and 4 basil leaves. Place a few sticks of julienned carrots along the top of the filling ingredients and top with 2 slices of pork.   Spread 1/4 tsp. Hoisin on top of pork.

Carefully pull lower edge of the wrapper up and over the filling.  Fold the 2 sides inward over the filling and press to seal. Work carefully so as not to tear the wrapper.  Once both sides are folded inward over the filling, roll the spring roll upwards so that the filling is tightly contained and roll up to seal.  Set the spring roll aside on a plate lined with lettuce leaves, covered with a damp paper towel or damp clean kitchen towel, as they dry out very quickly.  Repeat with remaining wrappers and filling. Once you have assembled all spring rolls, serve immediately either at room temperature or slightly chilled, with Nuoc Leo (Peanut Sauce) for dipping.  Yield: 12 spring rolls, 4-6 servings.


Nuoc Leo (Vietnamese Peanut Sauce)

1 Tbsp. peanut oil

3 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp. minced shallot
1 tsp. sambal olek (chile garlic sauce)
1 tsp. tomato paste
1/3 cup chicken stock or water
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
2 Tbsp. peanut butter
1/2 tsp. sugar
1/4 cup finely chopped roasted peanuts, for garnish
1 fresh red Thai chile pepper, seeded and thinly sliced (optional)
Sriracha sauce for serving (optional)

Heat oil in small saucepan and when hot, add garlic, shallots, chile garlic sauce,  and tomato paste and cook until garlic and shallots are golden brown, about 30 seconds.  Add chicken stock, hoisin sauce, peanut butter and sugar and whisk to combine. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer until sauce has thickened, about 3 minutes.  Remove from heat and let cool slightly before serving. Garnish sauce with peanuts, chile pepper and Sriracha sauce, if desired. Yield: 1 1/4 cups, enough for about 6 servings.  


Fettuccine Nero:

8 oz. fresh squid ink fettucine
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
2 tsp.  thinly sliced garlic
2 tsp. thinly sliced Calabrian peppers (can substitute jalapenos)
1/4 cup pasta water
1 cup baby arugula, stems trimmed
8 oz. jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over of shells and cartilage
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted

Bring medium-size saucepan of water to rolling boil and season with sea salt.  Add pasta to water and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until pasta is just tender. Drain and set aside.  In medium-size saute’ pan, over medium heat, add olive oil, sliced garlic, and peppers and gently cook garlic until it turns a pale or golden brown.  As soon as garlic begins to brown, add pasta water and bring to simmer. Add pasta to pan and toss to coat.

Add arugula, crabmeat and lemon juice and toss with pasta being careful not to break up the lumps of crab.  Cook for 1 minute or until heated through. Transfer pasta to serving platter or individual dishes and garnish with toasted almonds.  Serve immediately. Yield: 4 servings.


Charred Chayote Soup with Adobo Shrimp:

1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 1/2 tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
2 1/2 lbs. chayote squash (2-3 squash), peeled, halved and seeded
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tsp. adobo sauce from canned chipotles in adobo sauce
1/2 cup diced yellow onions
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
1 qt. chicken stock
1 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves
Sour cream, for garnish, optional

Preheat grill or grill-pan to medium-high heat.  In large bowl, toss chayote with vegetable oil, 1/2 tsp. of the salt and the black pepper.  Place chayote on the grill and cook, in batches, if necessary, until slightly charred on both sides, 8-10 minutes per side.  Remove from heat, cut into 1/2″ dice and set aside.

Toss shrimp with 1/4 tsp. salt and the adobo sauce and let stand for at least 10 and up to 30 minutes.  Heat butter over medium-high heat in medium stockpot or soup pot. Add onions and remaining 1/2 tsp. salt and cook until softened, about 3 minutes.  Add garlic and cook, stirring, 30 seconds. Add reserved chayotes, cumin and crushed red pepper to the stockpot. Stir in chicken stock and bring mixture to a boil.  Turn heat down to medium-low and simmer until chayote is tender, about 8 minutes.

Add shrimp and cook for 2 minutes or until shrimp are cooked through.  Remove soup from heat and stir in cilantro. Serve soup immediately, garnished with sour cream,  if desired. Yield: 4 servings, about 2 quarts.

Cheryl’s Cuisine: July 2018

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

By Cheryl Radkiewicz

I’ve always lived by the belief that if you don’t learn something new every day, it’s a wasted day.   

The recent Lehigh Valley Food and Wine Festival offered a wealth of knowledge. As Pennsylvanians, do you know who John Clemens was?  I didn’t until I was introduced to the Clemens Food Group, a sixth generation family -owned pork producer based in Hatfield, PA.

lvfoodwine-logoNow I’ve heard of Hatfield hams and pork products. In the early 1900’s John Clemens began what has become one of the largest purveyors of pork products in the industry. In 2010, the Clemens Food Group now includes branches dedicated to farming, transportation and  distribution of quality pork products.

I spent part of the festival chatting with Drew and Christy Cashman, a husband and wife team, who represent Hatfield pork products.  They were displaying replicas of all parts of the pig and explained how each part is used. There were loin cuts, pork belly, pork shoulder, Boston butt, spare ribs, baby back ribs, ham hocks, feet, brains, kidneys, etc.  The biggest seller of the entire pig is, yes, you guessed it: BACON!

Parts not used as much in the United States such as feet, brains, glands and kidneys are shipped to Asian and South American countries, where they are popular.

Do you know how many products are for sale in our stores from Hatfield?  The company is making it easier and easier for busy families to use their products.  Here is just a sampling of what Hatfield offers:

Hot Italian Ground Sausage, Sweet Italian Ground Sausage, Ground Pork, Chorizo Ground Sausage, Sage Ground Sausage, Country Ground Sausage, Tex-Mex Pork Strips, Simply Pork Strips, Ham Steaks, Bone-In Hams, Boneless Hams, Pork Roll, Sauerkraut, Scrapple, Bologna, Bacon, P&P Loaf, Liverwurst, Tavern Ham, Sausage Patties, Rope Sausage Links, Seasoned or Plain Pork Loin Fillets, Tenderloins, Premium Pork Roasts, St. Louis Ribs  and Frankfurters.

As a matter of fact, Clemens Group has been chosen to make the franks for the Philadelphia Phillies.

So here are a few recipes from the Clemens group to add to your repertoire:

Bacon and Cheese Dip:

bacon8 slices Hatfield Classic Bacon
1-8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 cups sour cream
2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
1 bunch green onions, chopped

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In a large skillet, cook bacon on medium-high heat until crisp.  Remove from pan and place on paper towel to drain. Once cool, crumble bacon and set aside.  Combine ingredients in a bowl. Place the mixture in a 1 quart baking dish. Cover and heat for 25-35 minutes or until hot all the way through.  


Country Sausage Strata:

2 lbs. Hatfield Recipe Essentials Country Ground Sausage, crumbled
3 cups onion and garlic croutons
1 green pepper, finely chopped
18 eggs
3 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
2 cups milk
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. paprika

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  In large skillet over medium heat, cook sausage, using a spoon to break up into pieces.  In a greased 13x9x2″ baking dish, place cooked sausage and croutons. In large bowl, beat eggs.  Stir in cheese, mustard, milk, salt and paprika. Pour mixture into baking dish.

Bake uncovered for 40-45 minutes or until knife inserted  near the center comes out clean. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Serves 10.

*** Sausage Fettuccine:

1 lb. Hatfield Recipe Essentials Sweet or Hot Ground Sausage
3/4 lb. fettuccine
1/4 cup olive oil
8 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
2 Tbsp. fresh basil, finely chopped
1/4 tsp. dried crushed red pepper
8 oz. fresh kale, torn into pieces
1 cup shaved Asiago cheese

Cook pasta in large pot of boiling water until just tender, stirring occasionally.  In a large saute’ pan over medium heat, add 1 Tbsp. olive oil. Add garlic slices and saute’ until light golden brown, approximately 45 seconds.  Using a slotted spoon, transfer garlic to a bowl. In the same saute’ pan, add kale and cook until just wilting. Remove and transfer to bowl.

Using the same pan, increase heat to medium-high, add sausage and cook, stirring and breaking up with a spoon. Cook until sausage is fully browned, about 10 minutes.  Drain pasta; add remaining olive oil to large pot.

Using tongs, toss pasta, kale and sausage. Add salt, pepper and crushed red pepper. Transfer pasta to a large bowl or platter. Top with crispy garlic and shaved Asiago cheese. Serves 4.


Caribbean Roast Pork:

4-5 lb. Hatfield Tuscan Herb Pork Roast
roast1 medium  onion, sliced thickly
1 head garlic, peeled
2 Tbsp. oregano
2 tsp. cumin seeds
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
1 Tbsp. lard or oil
Zest and juice of 1 orange, grated
Zest and juice of 1 lemon, grated
Juice of 1 bitter orange

Make several shallow cuts, about 1/2″ deep, in pork.   Spread onion slices on bottom of a glass or ceramic roasting pan.  Place remaining ingredients in food processor or blender to make a pasta.  

Rub the pork with the mixture on all sides, making sure it goes into the cuts.  Place pork on top of the onions. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 4 hours, turning once, leaving the fat side up for cooking.

 Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place pork on middle oven rack. After 30 minutes, turn down temperature to 325 degrees and cook 2 hours, basting every 30 minutes.  Cook 30 minutes per pound, or until an internal temperature of 160 degrees is reached. Remove pork from oven and let rest 15 minutes before carving. Makes 8 servings.