Italian Beef Sandwiches


Roxanne Heller is pushing like crazy – her bicycle that is.  She’s pushing so hard because, in just a few weeks, she will ride in the “Last Gasp”, a bike ride on September 20 from Sandwich to Provincetown to raise funds for the Cape Cod Literacy Council.

As a former GED teacher and Literacy Council volunteer tutor, Rox has seen the difference the gift of reading can make in a person’s life.  Besides severely limiting a person’s opportunities, illiteracy is a source of embarrassment and low self-esteem.  The Literacy Council is a non-profit organization that provides free literacy services to adults on Cape Cod, either through one-on-one tutoring or in High School Equivalency classrooms.

Rox is passionate about this wonderful organization and asks your support so that the Literacy Council can continue its important work.  If you want to help support Rox on this ride, donations may be made online at Select the Last Gasp Rider radio button. Be sure to select Rox’s name in the dropdown list, fill in the Donation Amount box, then click the Add to Cart button. Follow the instructions from that point on.  Each gift, no matter how small or large, is important to the Council.

Meanwhile, while Rox is preparing for the September 20th ride, she’s looking forward to cooking cooler weather recipes like Italian Beef Sandwiches.  Here she shares her recipe with you.


Although mostly known as a Chicago sandwich, I was first introduced to Italian Beef Sandwiches while spending time at my sister’s house in northern Indiana. Rarely (if ever) have I met anyone on the Cape who has ever heard of these delicious, but very easy-to-make sandwiches. I speculate that the Italians in the Mid-West have come from a different part of Italy than those who brought us pasta and pizza!

Italian Beef Sandwiches


5 lb. roast beef  (whatever is on sale works fine)                                                                   
3 Green Peppers
Crusty rolls or long loaf bread like a baguette or ciabatta


Put the beef roast in a large pot and cover with water. Simmer for about 4 hours. Remove the meat from the pot, pull it apart with forks, and return the meat to the pot. Discard any fat or gristle. Prepare the green peppers by removing the stems and seeds and cutting them into slices, then add them to the pot.   Allow the peppers to simmer along with the meat for about 20 minutes.  Salt to taste.

Spoon the meat and peppers into sliced rolls or pieces of bread.

Some in my family prefer to eat their sandwiches like a French dip with a bowl of the pot liquor on the side, while others put their bread and filling in a bowl and drench the bread with broth (a soup spoon is required for this method).


Iceberg Salad with Roquefort & Smoked Bacon

If the summer heat is getting to you and all you want is a nice, cool salad, here is a recipe from Chef Alan Zox of  Chef Zox has recently introduced a new  program “Home Food for All Ages” and he will conduct a “New Orleans Cooking Workshop” this fall in Yarmouth Port.  The class will include instructions for making gumbo, Pork & Clam Jumbalaya and Shrimp Etouffee: .  Meanwhile cool off with Chef Zox’s easy Iceberg Salad.

Iceberg Lettuce Wedges with Blue Cheese or Roquefort and Smoked Bacon
Serves 4


Salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ tbsp lemon zest
½ cup plain yogurt
6 oz (1½ cups) chilled Roquefort cheese, crumbled                                           
4 slices hickory-smoked bacon
1 medium head iceberg lettuce, cut into 2- to 3-inch wedges
2 plum tomatoes, juice and seeds squeezed out and diced
1 tbsp fresh chives, minced
Capers and black olives (optional)


1. Combine the salt, lemon juice, zest, yogurt and Roquefort and refrigerate. Dressing will last up to a week in the refrigerator.
2. Using a dry sauté pan, cook the bacon until brown and crisp. Then roughly chop and set aside.
3. When ready to serve, place 2 to 3 lettuce wedges on each plate. Stir the yogurt dressing briskly with a fork and pour about 2 tbsp over each serving of the wedges, as you like.
4. Sprinkle the diced tomatoes and chopped bacon on top. Season to taste with chives, salt and pepper. Add capers and sliced black olives, if using.

Cape Cod Ceviche

Artist Andrew Newman designed the fabulous Mermaid Logo for Marvelous Mavens, home of, and

But Andrew Newman could easily be known as the “Cod Father” for his elevation of the ubiquitous and historically maligned codfish to an unimagined artistic level. Andrew began his career In New York City as a graphic designer, working primarily in the publishing industry (his covers have an international recognition with Danielle Steel, Carl Hiassen, and John Gray, just to name a few). After becoming a Cape Cod Wash-ashore (that’s what we call people who relocate here but were not born here), he continued  designing book jackets but moved into branding, corporate & personal logos, display, and web design, but in December 2007 he began his foray into cod designs with his first, “The Christmas Cod.”

He was taken with the dropped “r’s” that peppered the speech of locals, and he also loved the look of the codfish, so, putting these together, he developed Cape Card®, the “Hallmark of Cods”:

Newman’s “cods” are visible throughout the Cape and have been sold throughout the  world as cards, prints, posters, apparel, and signage (Marstons Mills Public Library’s sign is “The Library Cod”). He has had one man shows at The Centerville Historical  Society and Falmouth Academy as well as having pieces in group shows at the Cotuit Center for the Arts  and The Cultural Center of Cape Cod. They are fun, whimsical, personal, and always beautifully executed.




And here is Andrew’s recipe for a Panamanian style Cape Cod Ceviche.                         

When my wife and I visited Panama recently, one of our favorite spots was the world-famous fish market, Mercado de Mariscos, a short walk from Casco Viejos, where we stayed. The ceviche stalls were enticing and plentiful. It was there that my wife became an obsessed devotee, running even in pouring rain, to get her daily fix of this “food of the gods.” Served in styrofoam cups and costing $1.00 US, she made it her mission to replicate those intoxicating flavors once we returned to the Cape. So, the recipe that follows is her best duplication of Panama’s ceviche. We often use cod since we do not have Corvina here (a particular kind of sea bass). Any saltwater white fish will do, as well as scallops and shrimps.

Any amount of cod, but at least 2 pounds                                                                                 
Fresh lemons and limes
Large bunch of cilantro
Red onion
Red pepper flakes
Kosher salt

Juice at least 6 limes and 6 lemons – certainly use more if you are making more fish – this is really according to individual taste. Place into glass container with lid (can be a mason jar or larger), add salt (again to taste but about 2 teaspoons). Chop onion finely and note that you may need 2 of them if you are making a larger amount – add to lemon/lime juice. Chop cilantro finely and add to mixture. Add red pepper to taste. Sample the mixture before adding fish since corrections can be made easily.

The fish should be chopped into smallish, bite-sized pieces and then added to a container. Either stir with long spoon or shake gently once the lid is on and refrigerate. In Panama they do not refrigerate the ceviche as the fish “cooks” but I don’t recommend this. Depending upon the amount of citrus and the size of your fish pieces, this recipe cooks fairly fast. Check throughout the day and usually it is ready by early evening if you made it in the morning. Some people eat this with crackers but we enjoy it unadorned. The ceviche is done when the fish loses transparency and becomes an opaque white.


White Bean Bruschetta

Each summer the Boston Pops Orchestra visits Cape Cod for a wonderful Pops by the Sea concert on the Hyannis Green.  Lawn seats are only $20 which benefits the Arts Foundation of Cape Cod.  It’s a great way to see and hear one of the country’s most beloved musical entities.  The Arts Foundation, in conjunction with TD Bank, also sponsors local band concerts each night of the week in a different town during the month of July.  These concerts are free and are usually held in a local park (You’ll find the schedule on our Events feature).  You can bring your kids and bring a picnic.  Tuck this information away for next summer and meanwhile enjoy this recipe for White Bean Bruschetta, a very chic and healthy appetizer that’s great picnic food.

White Bean Bruschetta                                                                                                                 1 can small white beans, drained (15.5 oz. can Goya)              1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
3 Plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1/4 cup chopped Kalmata olives
6 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Boursin, goat or cream cheese, optional

Mix all ingredients together and let sit overnight in refrigerator.  When you are ready to eat, slice a French baguette into 1/4 to 1/2″ slices, brush with olive oil on one side and toast under broiler (Italians only toast one side.)  You can spread some cheese on the baguette slices (or not) and then spoon some of the bean dip on top.

Million Dollar Spaghetti

“Coach” John Petercuskie is 90 years young and you can find him in the local gym in Centerville, Massachusetts on beautiful Cape Cod.  He is always surrounded by young jocks, older guys who want to talk football and even lovely young ladies who just adore “Coach”.
You see, “Coach” is a living legend down here.  He began his career coaching at Neshaminy High School in Pennsylvania, where he coached for 11 years.  But Coach was no ordinary coach; he coached his players to a 51 game winning streak.  In 2010, his devoted fans erected a bronze statue in his likeness in Langhorne, PA so that he will never be forgotten.
Coach left Neshaminy to become an Assistant Coach at Dartmouth College for 3 years, then went on to Boston College for 4 years, on to Princeton for 4 years and then, in 1978 Coach Petercuskie became the Special Teams Coach for the Cleveland Browns where he remained until 1984.  He then went on to coach at Harvard University for 2 years and then to Liberty University for 6 more years.  So you can imagine that he knows a little something about football.
Coach was always concerned about his players.  He made sure they were game ready by eating well.  When they came to his house for dinner, his lovely wife Dorothy was instructed to make a big bowl of Million Dollar Spaghetti.  Dorothy is a wonderful cook and she is very focused on healthy eating – so these days the Coach and his 3 handsome sons only get Million Dollar Spaghetti on his birthday.  And Dorothy also makes the best apple pies that you have ever tasted.  (Watch our Events page for the St. Michael’s Orthodox Church Bake Sales where Dorothy’s pies sell out quickly.)
So tuck this recipe away for football season and invite a house full to watch the game.  Your guests will be in heaven eating Million Dollar Spaghetti.
P. S.  Don’t even think about counting the calories – football players need lots of them.

MILLION DOLLAR SPAGHETTI                                                                                             
Serves 4

7 oz. package thin spaghetti
1 Tablespoon butter
1 1/2 lbs ground beef
Salt and Pepper
1/2 lb. Italian sausage, cut in small pieces
1 Tablespoon minced green pepper
2 – 8 oz cans tomato sauce
8 oz. cream cheese
1/4 cup sour cream
1/2 lb. cottage cheese
1/3 cup cut up scallions
2 Tablespoons melted butter

Cook spaghetti and drain.  Saute beef in butter until brown.  Add tomato sauce, salt and pepper.  Remove from heat.  Combine cottage cheese, cream cheese, sour cream, scallions, and green pepper.  In a square 2 quart casserole spread one half of the spaghetti and cover with cheese mixture and fried sausage.  Add remainder of spaghetti and pour butter over spaghetti.  Spread tomato meat sauce over top.  Chill.  Remove from refrigerator 20 minutes before baking.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until hot and bubbly.  Serve with green salad and garlic bread.  Fabulous!

The Kasbah Chronicles / Kitty Morse / July 2015

Recipes for  Brochettes à la chermoula and Fresh Tomato Salsa  from Chef Kitty Morse’Cooking at the Kasbah: Recipes from my Moroccan Kitchen.

                                                    Brochettes à la chermoula


Substitute boneless chicken thighs for the lamb.
Makes about 15 kabobs

One 3-pound leg of lamb
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 onion, grated
1 tablespoon sweet Hungarian paprika
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon pepper
Fresh mint leaves or lettuce leaves for garnish
Ground cumin and salt for serving
Harissa, for serving (North African hot sauce, readily available)

Trim the lamb of fat and cut the meat into 1/2-inch cubes. In a large bowl, combine the meat, olive oil, cilantro, parsley, onion, paprika, garlic, cumin, lemon juice, and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Prepare a fire in a charcoal grill or preheat the broiler. Thread 8 to 10 pieces of meat on metal skewers. Grill about over a medium fire, turning occasionally, about 6 to 8 minutes for medium rare. To serve, line a large platter with mint or lettuce leaves and top with the skewers. Serve with plenty of crusty bread, and little saucers filled with cumin, salt, and harissa on the side, for dipping.


                                                          Fresh Tomato Salsa

In Djemaa el Fna Square, this refreshing salsa usually accompanies brochettes:

2 very ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and coarsely chopped
2 green onions, tops included, finely chopped
4 fresh mint leaves, minced
1/4 teaspoon sugar

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste in a small bowl, combine all the ingredients.

Bon Appetit!!!!


Growing Lavender for Lavender Creme Brulee

While Chef Bill Atwood takes the classics and updates them to keep them fresh and    new, it’s his partner and spouse Denise Atwood who tends the lovely gardens surrounding the Red Pheasant Inn in addition to managing the front of the house.  The gardens produce lots of wonderful greens and many herbs that Chef Atwood uses in his menus.  Denise loves lavender and last week she harvested some for Bill to use in a fabulous Creme Brulee.  If you are not able to visit the Red Pheasant Inn in Dennis:,  Chef Atwood was generous enough to share his Lavender Creme Brulee recipe with you.

Chef Atwood feels it is very important to measure precisely when he is baking but, for the home baker, we’ve converted his measurements.

                                                       Lavender Creme Brulee

Makes 10 -11 Brulee depending on your dish size


750 grams of heavy cream (3 1/4 cups & 1 Tablespoon)
250 grams milk (1 cup & 2 Tablespoons)
200 grams sugar (3/4 cup & 2 Tablespoons)
10 egg yolks
1/4 to 1/2 cup lavender flowers (no stems which are bitter) -
use less lavender flowers for dried, more for fresh
Sugar for caramelizing top


Add the lavender flowers to the cream and milk and scald.
Whip egg yolks with sugar to a soft ribbon.
Temper with cream and milk mixture
Strain through a chinoise (or a fine strainer)
Fill ramekins and bake @ 350 1/2 hour in water bath until set
Make a day ahead of time for best flavor.
Remove the creme brulee from the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes prior to browning the sugar on top. Sprinkle with sugar on top.  Using a torch, melt the sugar and form a crispy top.  Garnish with a lavender flower.   Allow the creme brulee to sit for at least 5 minutes before serving.
Bon appetit!


Cucumber Appetizer

Here’s another summer recipe from Chef Alan Zox.  Chef Zox has recently rolled out a new program called “Cuisine for Seniors”:  The idea is that you can have gourmet quality meals cooked for you in your home for a reasonable cost ($45 for 3 meals).  Meanwhile as the cucumbers come rolling into your garden, how about a nice simple summer appetizer recipe from Chef Zox that is cool and refreshing.

                                                          Cucumber Appetizer
Serves  6

-3 European cucumbers, slice 1/4 inch wide without peeling or deseeding
-1/4 cup champagne vinegar; and 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
-1/4 cup sesame seeds
-sea salt and fresh ground black pepper
-red chili flakes served in a small ramekin

Add the champagne and balsamic vinegar to a medium size (non-metal) bowl
Add the cucumber slices cut 1/4 inch wide
Add sesame seeds, salt and pepper.
Place the seasoned cucumbers, vinegars and seasoning in an attractive bowl with a large spoon and small plates on the side.

Allow your guests to serve themselves with toothpicks, forks or chop sticks. Other spices may be appealing to some guests and not others. For example, serving chili flakes in a small ramekin is appreciated. Eating alone is another time to enjoy this treat.


Portuguese Style Little Necks Tomatoes Chorizo Over Linguine

       For 33 years, Bob Silva worked with International Packaging in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, ultimately as Corporate Vice President heading up the International Accessories Division. In 1992, Bob and his wife purchased their home in Hyannis Port where, every weekend after a full and hectic week, they would come down to the year round summer house and, as Bob puts it, “recharge his batteries.”  After making the decision to retire in 2003, Bob and his wife renovated their summer home so it would have a new kitchen for Bob’s cooking pleasures and a Great Room to relax in.

Bob’s passion for cooking soon became a retirement commitment.  He took over the day to day cooking in his new kitchen complete with a Viking range (a commercial range made for residential living) and has been making gourmet meals ever since.  Bob testifies that he can actually taste a meal before he even makes it.

Shellfishing was an early childhood requirement for Bob as his grandmother would task him to go and dig up steamers as well as periwinkles before they started to cook together.  This is how he combined shellfishing with his cooking skills.

Bob’s recipe can also be found in “The B.A.R.S. Book of Favorite Shellfish Recipes”  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.

Now enjoy Bob’s recipe for Portuguese Style Little Necks Tomatoes Chorizo Over Linguini.  Yum!!!


                 Portuguese Style Little Necks Tomatoes Chorizo Over Linguine

Serves 3 – 4


  1. 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  2. 3/4 pound chorizo, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  3. 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  4. Pinch of cayenne pepper
  5. 2 dozen little neck clams, scrubbed
  6. 4 medium tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  7. 4 garlic cloves, minced
  8. 1/2 cup shredded basil leaves
  9. 1 cup dry white wine
  10.  3/4 pound linguine
  11.  Salt and freshly ground pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 450°. Heat the olive oil in a large, deep ovenproof skillet. Add the chorizo and onion and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion softens and the chorizo begins to brown, about 5 minutes. Stir in the cayenne. Arrange the clams in the skillet and scatter the tomatoes, garlic and 1/4 cup of the basil on top. Add the wine and roast in the oven, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Stir the clams and roast for about 20 minutes longer, the clams have opened.
  2. Meanwhile, cook the linguine, or your favorite pasta, in a pot of boiling salted water until al dente.
  3.  Drain the pasta and transfer it to a large serving bowl. Pour the chorizo clam sauce over the linguine, season with salt and pepper and toss to combine. Garnish the linguine with the remaining 1/4 cup of basil and serve.


Peach and Blueberry Crumble

It seems that the markets down here are overflowing with both Eastern peaches and New Jersey blueberries.   A fabulous idea for a Fourth of July dessert!

                                                PEACH & BLUEBERRY CRUMBLE
6 large  peaches (about 5 1/2-6 cups), peeled and cut into 1/2 ” wedges
1 pint blueberries
1/2 cup very cold butter (1 stick), cut into small pieces)
1 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 Tablespoons maple syrup (the secret ingredient)

Blanch the peaches for 30-90 seconds in boiling water and put in an ice bath to cool.  The skins will slide off nicely.  Cut into 1/2″ wedges.  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Combine the butter, flour, and sugars.  Mix well.  Put the peaches and blueberries in a bowl and sprinkle the cornstarch over them.  Add the lemon juice and maple syrup and mix gently.  Transfer to an oven proof baking dish (Corning Ware works great) and top with the crumbs.  Bake at 375 degrees for about 40 minutes.  Serve warm with a dollop of ice cream on top.