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LINDA MARRONE: Sorting recipes for the keepers

Linda Marrone
For the Nevada Appeal
Cathleen Allison/Nevada Appeal
NEVADA APPEAL | NEVADA APPEAL

It’s a new year and I’m always glad to see them come and see them go. I have high hopes of crossing off lots of things on my “to do” list this year. I don’t know what makes me think I’ll get more done this year than last, but I’m always hopeful.

One of my New Year’s resolutions is to try one new recipe each week. I read some where that most of us cook the same 20 dishes over and over, that’s sort of sad. I’ve tried about four new recipes and three are keepers, one is not.

I also promised Ralph that we would have a garage sale and get rid of all the stuff that we are not using. Living in the same house for 35 years, having had two restaurants, four kids and nine grandkids and it starts to pile up. I think of all my stuff as treasures but I’m trying to be realistic and if I haven’t used it in several years then it needs to be recycled. I’m always afraid that I might need it someday and then I never do and whatever it was just took up a lot of space until I finally decided to get rid of it anyway.

I belong to a glass club in town and one of the topics was how to collect in a down economy. Basically, what they said was to enjoy what you’ve got. I’ve been going through my cookbooks and reading them all again. I’m going to try and put all my loose recipes in some kind of order but I’ve been working on that for more years than I care talk about.

These first two recipes I’m going to share with you are on my keeper list. The first one comes from my friend Laurie Oswald and she adapted this from one of the Costco cookbooks. This is easy and delicious. The second recipe is a great way to use up any winter squash you still have. It makes a great side dish or a vegetarian entree.

Laurie’s Tangerine Caprese Appetizer

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

3 tablespoon olive oil

1⁄4 cup tangerine juice

Zest of one tangerine

Fresh mozzarella, sliced

Fresh basil

Fresh tangerines

Mix first four ingredients together for vinaigrette dressing.

Peel and half the tangerine, drizzle with a little dressing; add a slice of fresh mozzarella and some fresh sliced basil. Stick with toothpick, drizzle with little more dressing and garnish with fresh basil leaf.

Spicy Baked Squash

Winter squash of your choice

1 cup grated pepper jack cheese

1⁄3 cup sun dried tomatoes

1⁄2 cup half-and-half

Cut winter squash in half, cleaned, with the seeds scooped out, and baked upside down in pan of water, until tender but not quite done at 350 oven for about 30-40 minutes – depending on the size of the squash. You want to let the squash cool and remove the skin and cut it into cubes.

In a buttered casserole layer half the squash and tomatoes, sprinkle with half the cheese, repeat. Pour the half-and-half over top. Bake 350 until cheese melts and top begins to brown – about 30 minutes.

• Linda Marrone has been a Carson City resident since 1973 and together with her husband, Ralph, formerly operated Marrone’s Restaurant in Carson City and Somethin’s Cookin’ Catering.