The Incredible Cape Cod Oyster

Each year the Long Pasture Wildlife Sanctuary in Cummaquid on Cape Cod,, under Sanctuary Director Ian Ives, hosts walking tours of a Barnstable Oyster Farm along with an oyster tasting.  The current tours are all filled but watch our Events feature on the website for future tours.  Meanwhile, enjoy a little oyster trivia and a fabulous recipe.








Did you know that the cultivation of oysters began more than 2,000 years ago in Rome?    Oysters were a staple food for Native Americans.  100 years ago, oyster harvests exceeded 10 million bushels a year.  These days they are not as plentiful – why?  mostly because we ate them.  Today, farming oysters is a big business.  It’s a business that’s great for the environment – oysters feed on algae and filter the water.  Long term, oysters    have the potential to dramatically improve water quality.  Plus they are sooo good!              

And, in case you didn’t know, oysters are also an aphrodisiac.  It’s said that Casanova (a famous 18th century lover) ate 50 oysters for breakfast every day.  Take a look at one of Cape Cod’s fabulous oyster farms:  Barnstable Seafarms owned by Les Hemmila.  And enjoy one of our favorite oyster recipes from “The New Irish Table“.

Baked Rock Oysters with Bacon, Cabbage and Guinness Sabayon
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup Guinness stout
Dash of fresh lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
4 outer green cabbage leaves, finely shredded                                                                       
1 teaspoon canola oil
4 slices Irish or Canadian bacon, chopped
24 oysters in the shell

In a double boiler, whisk egg yolks, Guinness, lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste.  Place over barely simmering water and whisk 3 to 5 minutes, or until sauce begins to thicken.  Remove from heat and gradually drizzle in melted butter until sauce is well blended.

Cook cabbage in salted boiling water 1 to 2 minutes, or until slightly wilted.  Drain and immerse in cold water.  Drain again.

In small skillet over medium heat, heat oil.  Cook bacon until crisp.  Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towels to drain.

Shuck oysters over small bowl.  Reserve deeper half of each shell and rinse under cold water.  Place shells on a bed of rock salt in a small baking sheet with sides.  Divide cabbage among the shells, put an oyster on top of each and sprinkle bacon over oysters.  Spoon some of the sabayon over each.  Place under pre-heated boiler 4 inches from heat and cook for about 3 minutes, or until sauce is browned and bubbling.  Makes 4 servings.

Bon Appetit!!!

Prince Edward Mussels in Pernod Infusion Broth

                                   Prince Edward Mussels in Pernod Infusion Broth

A recipe for Prince Edward Mussels in Pernod Infusion Broth from Chef/Owner Susan Connors of Pisces Restaurant and Bar in Chatham.

This recipe serves 1-2 people


15 mussels scrubbed and debearded
1/2 cup julienne leeks (washed thoroughly)
1/2 cup julienne fennel
1/2 teaspoon chopped garlic
pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
Star anise (break off one “star”)
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 teaspoon lemon juice
2 Tablespoons of small diced fresh plum tomatoes
1 Tablespoon unsalted butter or more to taste
1 Tablespoon Pernod
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 teaspoon of snipped chives
1 lemon slice

Grilled or baked garlic bread (crostini)
olive and canola blended oil for cooking (1 1/2 Tablespoons)
2 10 inch saute pans


Heat oil over medium high heat
Add fennel and leeks, cook until just starting to get soft
Add garlic, red pepper flakes and anise, cook until garlic starts to soften (about 1 minute)
Add mussels and toss with ingredients in pan
Deglaze with white wine
Add lemon juice, butter and diced tomato – cover with second saute pan and steam until all mussels are open (about 4 – 5 minutes)
Add Pernod and salt and pepper to taste
Spoon mussels and broth into a bowl
Sprinkle with chives
Garnish with fresh lemon slice and grilled garlic crostini

Bon Appetit!!

The Kasbah Chronicles August 2014 / Kitty Morse


Last month I mentioned that August 15, 1964 is a momentous date in my life. I have now lived FIFTY years in the United States! I celebrated with my mother, champagne, dear friends, and this decorative basket of succulents.

If you would like to read about my “immigration experience” and my arrival in the US, please follow the links to the August 2014 post on my website.

My mother and I decided to celebrate our 50th by spending two days in Coronado where my husband was stationed in the Navy over 40 years ago. Have you visited lately?

To me, Coronado is still “utopia” with its mansions and villas fronted with emerald lawns, its 25-mile speed limit, its mile long sandy beach and sparkling bay front. When we lived there from 1973-1975, we picnicked in front of the world-famous Hotel Del (setting for the film, Some Like it Hot), and frequented a handful of unexciting restaurants, a shabby supermarket, and a sleepy main street. This time, we dined in bistros, overheard a multitude of languages, and dodged hordes of visitors on Orange Avenue. Yet, Coronado has retained much of its utopian charm. Don’t miss the stunning new library.


I have probably mentioned at one time or another a cookbook that is close to my heart. The California Farm Cookbook (Pelican Publishing, 1999) took me to at least 200 farms in California to obtain the farmers’ recipes for THEIR product. I cook out of that book all the time! It is still in print and available on Pelican recently sent out this e-mail blast.

Mint Tea and Minarets: a banquet of Moroccan memories is also available on

Would you consider writing a short review of the book in the “write your own review” section? I am told this helps book sales! A few words will do.

How about that?!

Obama Welcomes African Leaders for Unusual Dinner

WASHINGTON — Aug 5, 2014, 10:49 PM ET

White House dinner

“The menu featured a largely American-style dinner with hints of Africa sprinkled throughout each of the four courses.

Guests dined on chilled spiced tomato soup and socca crisps, which are made of chick peas; chopped farm-stand vegetable salad using produce from the first lady’s garden; and grilled dry-aged Wagyu beef served with chermoula, a marinade used in North African cooking . . .”

COULD the White House chef have consulted Cooking at the Kasbah or my other books (I don’t think so!) In any case, here is the recipe. You can use chermoula with lamb, chicken, seafood, or vegetables:


Combine the ingredients and savor! Use spices to taste.

1/2 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
12 sprigs cilantro, minced
1 garlic clove, minced

CAPE COD: Heading to the East Coast?

Be sure to consult


There isn’t much to see from a historical standpoint in my hometown, so this may be an interesting venue for some.

A Casablanca, le seul musée du judaïsme du monde arabe (The ONLY Jewish museum in the Arab World, founded in 1997.)

“C’est l’unique musée juif dans le monde arabe”, souligne sa conservatrice Zhor Rhihil, fonctionnaire marocaine de confession musulmane.”

Who knew?

Morocco surpasses the US in strawberry exports!

Les pays européens représentent 95% des exportations marocaines de fraises. L’Espagne a exporté 355.000 tonnes de fraises, suivis par le Mexique (266.000 tonnes), les États-Unis (164.000 tonnes) et la Chine (128.000 tonnes.)

Bismillah and Bon Appétit!


Happy Labor Day

Artichoke Pesto

                                                   Artichoke Pesto

A delicious Cape Cod recipe for all seasons from Innkeepers Joe and Annemarie Charbonneau of Handkerchief Shoals Inn, Harwich.

Artichoke Pesto

Serves 8 – 10

1 package 8oz, of frozen artichokes hearts thawed
1 large bunch of fresh basil
2/3 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
zest and juice of one lemon
2 cloves garlic
1/2 teas salt

Combine thawed artichokes, basil, garlic, lemon zest and juice and salt in food processor. Run the machine to finely chop all ingredients, stopping the machine to scrap down sides. Then with machine running drizzle in olive oil. Place mixture in a bowl and hand mix in Parmesan cheese.
Spread pesto over toasted baguette slices.

Bon Appetit!!

Salubrious Salutations

“Salubrious Salutations” will bring to the attention of fellow wine drinkers the importance of the initial Toasts when you open a bottle of wine.   Randomly over the next year we will enlighten you with some clever, some meaningful, some brilliant and some humorous Toasts.  Here is our first.

Some Words of Wisdom from friend and fellow world traveler Gail Kaley Kumpf of Marietta, Georgia:

“It’s not the wine you drink; it’s the friends you lift the glass with!”

Barnstable Association of Recreational Shellfishing (BARS) / August 2014

Elsa Sampou has lived on Cape Cod in West Barnstable for close to 30 years.  She and her husband Andre bought an old 1780 house that cried out for love and attention with a hope that this would be a great gathering place for their large family.  They have not been disappointed as over the years there’s been many celebrations and parties.  Before coming to the Cape, Elsa was not a fan of shellfish at all, but of course, once here, and husband Andre being a hunter/gatherer, they were soon checking out the gifts from the sea.  Clamming was top priority but then one day they kayaked out of Barnstable Harbor to a place called Mussel Point; this was a long time ago when the colony of mussels was abundant.  They came home with an enormous “catch”.  The job of cleaning them was left to Andre and the cooking left to Elsa.  The best recipe she found was for Mussels Mariniere.  There are many ways to prepare mussels, mostly steaming them in wine and seasoning them either spicy or creamy.  They are also a great addition to other seafood dishes, sitting among shrimp, lobster, scallops or clams – a gourmet feast!

Over the last few months we have posted a sampling of recipes from “The B.A.R.S. Book of Favorite Shellfish Recipes”.  These recipes are from members of the B.A.R.S. Board of Directors, their families, friends, and associates.  The cookbook includes Appetizers, Soups, Main Courses, Desserts and This & That.  There are helpful cooking hints throughout this very unique Cape Cod cookbook.

“The B.A.R.S. Book of Favorite Shellfish Recipes” is available for $17.00 by clicking this link to the B.A.R.S. website   All proceeds from this cookbook go to  scholarships and the promotion of the BARS Mission Statement.

For further information on BARS and its Mission Statement go to

Now enjoy Elsa Sampou’s recipe for Mussels Mariniere!!!

                                                   Mussels Mariniere

2 Tbls. flour
5 Tbls. unsalted butter, softened
2 cloves garlic, chopped
4 Tbls. onion, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 1/2 cups white wine
2-4 dozen mussels
1/4 cup heavy cream
4 Tbls. dijon mustard
2 egg yolks, lightly beaten

In a small bowl, blend flour and 3 tablespoons butter together with a fork until smooth.  Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat in a heavy bottom saute pan with a lid that fits tightly.  Add garlic, onion and bay leaf and cook, stirring for a few minutes.  Add white wine and bring to a boil.  Add mussels, cover and cook until shells open.

Discard any unopened shells.  Remove mussels from liquid with a slotted spoon and place in a bowl.  Bring liquid to a boil and remove from heat.  Quickly add flour and butter mixture and put back on the heat, whisking constantly.  Bring mixture to a boil until it thickens.  Cook for another minute or two to cook out the taste of raw flour.  Reduce heat to low.  Add cream, mustard and egg yolks.  Heat to warm, stirring constantly.  Don’t bring back to a boil or the eggs might curdle.  Pour sauce over mussels and sprinkle with chopped parsley.  Add generous slices of crusty french bread for dipping into the sauce.  Yum!  C’est merveilleux!


The Big Chill – Cape Cod’s Coolest Desserts with Four Seas Ice Cream

On Sunday, August 3, a charitable fundraising event was held to benefit Children’s Cove (Cape & Islands Child Advocacy Center).  At the event, 18 of the Cape’s top Chefs/restaurants were asked to create a dessert using Four Seas Ice Cream.  Here are a few of the results:

Congratulations to Chef Daniel Kenney of Red’s Restaurant, the winner of Cape Cod’s Coolest Dessert!!!!

Chef Daniel Kenney of Red’s Restaurant at the Sea Crest Beach Hotel presented an “After School Break”, Warm chocolate ‘goo’ cake with peanut butter & jelly ice cream, chocolate infusion, a gianduja melt and a fresh raspberry.  Gorgeous!

The Island Merchant’s Joe Dunn prepared a Four Seas Cinnamon & Fireball Shake with a bit of Cinnamon Dusted Fried Dough.

The Roadhouse kept it very simple with their Rocky Roadhouse Ice Cream (just perfect as it is).     For The Captain David Kelley House (home of the scone wars), Bonnie and Bob Wenger presented the famous Ginger Scones with lemon curd and Four Seas Ginger Ice Cream.

Lambert’s Kitchen’s Jimmy Prouty shared their luscious Apple Crisp with a scoop of Four Seas Vanilla.










And we were even treated to a healthy vegan chocolate cake made with tofu and topped with Four Seas Salted Carmel Ice Cream by Chef and Cape Cod Caterer Alan Zox.


















As far as we’re concerned, these were all winners!!!!!!


The Kasbah Chronicles July 2014 / Kitty Morse

Next month is a MOMENTOUS one for my mother and for me. On August 15th, we will celebrate our 50th year as residents of the United States. We emigrated here in 1964. And we are indeed PROUD to be American citizens!


Weekend getaway in the mountains of San Jacinto Mountains.

My mother purchased two nights for us at the Quiet Creek Inn in Idyllwild, CA so we could celebrate our anniversary.

What a treat to discover the quaint mountain town using the aptly named Quiet Creek Inn as home base. Our charming log cabin (with working fireplace and log!) opened onto a deck that overlooked the dry creek bed shaded by clumps of trees housing dozens of Western Scrub Jays and squirrels. A nice touch upon check in was a small bag of peanuts to feed the hungry critters. We spent several hours relaxing on the deck feeding birds (just look at that blue jay eating peanuts!) and squirrels (who come knocking on your door) and even purchased a refill of peanuts. The room, log cabin style, was lovely.  We obtained coupons for breakfast from the hotel, to use at the Mile High Café, a short distance away (walk- able, but along a busy road.) Breakfast was nondescript and we were charged for coffee refills. Can’t wait to go back to the Quiet Creek, and bring my own breakfast, or head for Café Aroma ( the most popular local hangout, open from dawn to evening. A rotating array of professional musicians performs live music nightly Al Fresco,  on the wide deck, from jazz, blues, and classical guitar, to ukelele.








                                                                                Photo by Romula Yanes

                 A quick recipe for a summer dinner!

 Egg Briks

Briks are deep-fried filo turnovers of Tunisian origin which are very popular in Morocco.  Briks are usually filled with an egg, a little diced onion, and chopped parsley and cilantro to taste.  They make a wonderful light supper.  Briks are meant to be eaten with the fingers, and part of the fun is having a little egg yolk dribble down your chin!  For best results, briks should be assembled immediately before serving, which means the cook will have to spend time in the kitchen at the last minute.  Count on two briks per person.

1 package frozen filo dough
vegetable oil for deep frying
For the filling:
1 cup onion, finely diced
1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley per brik
1 teaspoon chopped fresh cilantro per brik
12 eggs
salt and pepper to taste
wedges of lemon

         Thaw the filo overnight in the refrigerator, or two hours at room temperature.  Unfold filo. Using an 8-inch bowl or plate as a template, cut filo rounds with a sharp knife.  Each sheet of filo should yield two rounds.  Place the rounds on a plate, and cover with plastic wrap until ready to use.

Use two filo rounds per brik. Rewrap and refreeze any leftover filo for future use. Stack the rounds you are going to use.

Pour 1 inch of oil in a large skillet, and heat until a piece of phyllo sizzles.

Break one egg in a bowl.  The yolk must not break.

Have the chopped herbs, the chopped onion, and the spices ready.  Separate two rounds. Gently place them in the skillet, half in, and half hanging over the side.

Carefully place the egg on the half inside the pan, sprinkle with cilantro, onion, parsley, and salt and pepper.  Quickly fold over the other half of filo to form a turnover, and hold the edges sealed with a fork.

Using two spatulas, turn the brik over gently to fry the other side until golden brown.  Remove immediately, drain well on paper towel, decorate, and place on serving plate with a wedge of lemon.

Variation: Try a little Mexican salsa over the egg, instead of the herbs.

 From The Vegetarian Table: North Africa by Kitty Morse.

 Just for fun:

This just in!

BEWARE OF dating French-style, on


Off to make more fig jam:

I am not joking when I say my figs are as large as tangerines.

Bismillah and Bon Appétit!


Cape Cod Tabletop Treasures

When you think of summer on Cape Cod, you always think of food…briney oysters, fried clams, and gorgeous lobsters.  On your way to the beach, take a look at the great take out options to take with you:

If, however, you are saving your appetite for a fabulous dinner at one of restaurants, maybe you just want a snack to get you through the day.  And maybe you want to do a little exploring to see what else you can discover.  One   of the most interesting destinations around the Cape are the little art and antiques fairs at many of Cape Cod’s churches and institutions.  There’s usually lunch available and often little treats baked by members of the church’s congregation.

At a recent fair at the Congregational Church in          Centerville, there were lobster rolls for $10 (with a bag of Cape Cod Potato Chips).  And many of the vendors offered gorgeous little tabletop treasures that any food lover would covet.  One of the offerings was a set of silver cake forks from Mappin & Web on Oxford Street in London.  They were a one of a kind set  that you will probably never see again.  The third and fourth tines of these dessert forks were fused into one thick tine – maybe for cutting your cake?  And we think the implement in the center might have been used for a lemon to squeeze for tea time. You must wonder who brought these lovely treasures to Cape Cod for you to find.

You can find many of these fairs on our Events Feature:  In August, as part of Centerville’s Old Home Week, the Centerville Museum will host a Yard Sale where you just might find that treasure you have been looking for.

Chill Out With These Cape Cod Treats!

While the Cape Cod Package Store (Route 28, Centerville) is known for its Wine                 Geography (you can taste fabulous wines from all over the world at any time), they also      have a new surprise.  The famous Four Seas Ice Cream (Jackie Kennedy’s fave ice cream shop) has introduced some fabulous new flavors that are now available at the Cape Cod Package Store.                                                                                                                



How about Honey Jack Daniels, Limoncello, Peppermint Schnapps, Malbec Chip or       several other rotating flavors that are just as exciting.  Have a scoop of Limoncello with a shot of Limoncello on top.  Or how about a drizzle of warmed honey with some toasted pecans on a few scoops of Honey Jack Daniels (omg – you would not believe how good this is!)  Plus it’s also a “no-work” dessert to wow all those summer visitors.  How good can  it get?