Strike While The Grill Is Hot by Julie Busteed

Summer and summertime cooking… two things I look forward to. But with a bit of coordination, the two get even better.

The foods of summer… going to the farmer’s market and cooking with in-season fruits and vegetables, all so good…peach pies, grilled corn, and fresh sliced tomatoes. And since it’s often too hot to turn the ovens on inside, it’s a perfect time for grilling outside. This is where the coordination comes in.

We’ve been enjoying many grilled meals this summer. Since the Kamado Joe grill can cook at both high heat (up to 900 degrees) and also smoke something for hours, a little pre-planning can go a long way. Strike while the grill is hot… or something like that.

For example, we’ll have a flank steak marinated and ready to grill at 600 or 700 degrees. Once the steak is done, I adjust the temperature with the daisy wheel on top and bring it down to 400 degrees and grill my chicken, so that we can have grilled chicken Caesar salad the next night. Once the chicken is cooked, I again adjust the temperature to 200 degrees and smoke some salmon, that I save and use later in the week to create a wonderful Salmon and Basil Lasagna (recipe below). And this is where summer gets better – you’re not spending as much time cooking, freeing up time for more enjoying.

Like many other acquired skills in the kitchen, getting the hang of “stoking the Joe” to get the temperatures you need is easy once done a time or two. And unlike conventional grills, the Joes’ ability to get the high temps, and what you can then do with steaks, is amazing.

We have a few left in stock …stop by and take a look.

Salmon and Basil Lasagna
Serves 4
  1. 12 ounce salmon filet
  2. Olive oil
  3. 1 Tablespoon minced basil
  4. 1/2 Teaspoon salt
Lasagna Sauce
  1. 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  2. 2 Garlic cloves minced
  3. 1 Tablespoon minced shallot
  4. 1 Cup heavy cream
  5. 1/2 Cup sour cream (or plain Greek yogurt)
  6. Sea salt to taste
  7. White Pepper to taste
  1. 4 Lasagna noodles
  2. 1/4 Cup minced basil
  3. 1/3 Cup Parmesan cheese - grated
  1. Coat the salmon with oil. Sprinkle the flesh side of the fish with the basil and salt. Cover the filet and let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  2. Prepare your Kamado Joe smoker for barbecuing, bringing the temperature to 200 degrees. Place the salmon on the smoker and smoke until cooked through, about 30 to 40 minutes. (This can be done ahead of time - even a day in advance.)
  3. While the salmon smokes, make the sauce. Warm the oil in a small heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallot and the garlic and saute until soft but not browned. Stir in the rest of the sauce ingredients and adjust the heat to allow the mixture to simmer steadily. Stir frequently - cooking until it’s reduced by one-third/
  4. Cook the lasagna noodles according to the package. Drain and cut the strips into thirds (I also think that you could put this in a 9 x9 pan as opposed to making individual servings)
  5. Flake the salmon into bite-sized chunks.
  6. To assemble the lasagna, spoon about 1 tablespoon of the sauce on each plate. Lay a strip of lasagna over the sauce and top with 1 ounce of the salmon. Spoon sauce thinly over the fish and scatter about 1 teaspoon each of the basil and cheese over the sauce. Repeat with a second layer. For the top layer of the lasagna, again layer the pasta strip followed by the salmon. Top with equal portions of the remaining sauce, basil and cheese. Serve hot.
Adapted from Smoke and Spice by Cheryl and Bill Jamison
Adapted from Smoke and Spice by Cheryl and Bill Jamison
Marcel's Culinary Experience https://www.marcelsculinaryexperience.com/

Eat A Peach by Robin Nathan

It is peach season, indeed.  Everywhere you look, peaches and stone fruits are spilling from bins and stacked shoulder high in crates.  Nectarines, plums, pluots, plumcots – juicy, ripe and swoon-worthy.  Unless, of course, they’re not.  There’s nothing worse than choosing a fragrant peach and biting in to discover mealy mushy yuck.  How is a girl (or guy) to know which peach is good and which needs to be composted??

Don’t go for size, unless the fruit has been tree-ripened.  Often, especially at major grocery markets, the larger fruits get mealy before they have time to fully ripen. Check the weight. The heavier a fruit is for its size, the more juice it contains.  A large fruit that seems surprisingly light is past its prime. Lastly, breathe deeply.  A fruit that smells like nothing will taste like nothing.

It’s a crazy position for a chef, I know, but when fruit is perfect, I’d rather eat it as-is than cook it.  Slice up perfectly ripened peaches, nectarines, and plums, pit and slice a few cherries and toss them on top of bitter greens like arugula or radicchio.  Crumble over some fabulous Marché Bleu d’ Auvergne or Feta cheese, add some warm sliced grilled steak or chicken and call it dinner!

If you have an over-abundance of lovely peaches or nectarines, try this wonderful, French style peach cake that bakes with its own sugar crust.  It’s lovely for breakfast or brunch, or topped with ice cream for dessert.  Now, go eat a peach!

French Country Peach Cake with Chantilly “Sour” Cream
Serves 8
  1. 2 cups all purpose flour
  2. 2 teaspoons baking powder
  3. ½ teaspoon salt
  4. 1 cup unsalted butter in pieces at room temperature
  5. 1 1/3 cup + 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
  6. 4 eggs
  7. 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  8. 3 tablespoons peach liqueur
  9. 2-3 firm-ripe peaches or nectarines, peeled and diced
  1. 1 cup heavy cream
  2. 2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
  3. ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  4. ¼ cup full fat sour cream
  1. Prepare a 9” springform pan: Spray the pan with baking spray, place a sheet of parchment on the bottom and spray the sheet.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together. Set aside.
  3. Using a hand-held mixer or a stand mixer with paddle attachment, cream the butter and cup of sugar until soft and creamy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time until incorporated, then the vanilla and brandy. Beat a little longer on low speed to incorporate, but the mixture will look grainy. That’s fine. Add the dry mixture and blend to combine.
  4. Scrape a third of the batter into the springform pan. Arrange a single layer of fruit wedges on top of the batter and sprinkle with half of the remaining sugar. Scrape the remaining batter on top of the peaches, spreading as needed to completely cover the fruit. Sprinkle the last 2 tablespoons of sugar evenly on top of the cake.
  5. Place into preheated 350 degree oven and bake 45-55 minutes until golden and a pick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  6. Let cool and remove the springform sides and bottom. Serve with the Chantilly cream.
  1. Beat the cream and confectioner’s sugar on low speed with a hand held mixer to blend, then increase speed to high. Just after soft peaks form, add the sour cream and continue to beat until firmer peaks begin to form. Do not over-beat! Refrigerate for up to 3 hours, or use right away.
  1. “Chantilly” refers to heavy cream whipped with sugar and vanilla. The addition of sour cream adds refreshing tartness and has the additional benefit of stabilizing the cream.
Marcel's Culinary Experience https://www.marcelsculinaryexperience.com/

Wedding Gifts to Cherish by Jennifer Dorn

Wedding season is year-round at Marcel’s – as we have fun with our customers helping to pick out the perfect gifts for their bridal showers and wedding gifts. A wedding gift is special – it should be a gift that surpasses the ordinary. At Marcel’s, we enjoy helping you select this perfect gift. We want you to find something that celebrates two people starting a new life together, a gift they will cherish forever.

Yes, we have a Bridal Registry! Couples are welcome to set up an appointment and create their wish list. After the wedding, we are committed to helping the couple complete their list by giving them 10% off any remaining items on their registry. It’s easy to view their registry online, then give us a call or come into the shop and we will help you select the perfect gift, have it giftwrapped and shipped anywhere you need!

So let’s talk about those One of a Kind special gifts. One of my favorites is a vase from Simon Pearce that has their invitation engraved on the front – Beautiful! Simon Pearce also has hand blown champagne flutes – toasting with these through the years will be so elegant.

Perhaps you would like to give a gift card. Marcel’s gift cards can be used to register for a cooking class together – so thoughtful and fun!

Think about those memorable gifts you received or inherited from your family. My Grandmother gave me her hand carved wooden salad bowl and I still cherish and use it today! We also have salad bowls and charcuterie boards that are handcrafted, making a unique one of a kind gift. Le Creuset Dutch ovens are popular shower gifts – just add a hand written recipe card with your gift to make it special.

Weddings are joyous and we here at Marcel’s, are always ready to ensure you feel great about your gifting! We look forward to helping you find the perfect cherished gift for you next gift giving occasion.

Smoked Whitefish Tacos

Smoked Whitefish Tacos
  1. 5 pounds whitefish fillets
For the marinade
  1. Juice and zest from 3-4 limes
  2. 2 garlic cloves, minced
  3. 1 jalepeno, minced
  4. Olive oil
  5. Allepo pepper or black pepper
For smoking
  1. 1 sweet onion, sliced thin
  2. 2 sweet peppers, red, yellow, green, sliced thin
  3. 1-2 jalepenos, sliced
  4. Cilantro
  5. Salt to taste
For serving
  1. Corn tortillas
  2. Tomatillo salsa
  3. Avocado slices
  4. Cilantro
  5. Lime Wedges
  1. Mix all marinade ingredients together and slather over fish to marinate for 1-2 hours.
  2. Prepare grill with apple smoking chunks to 250 degrees.
  3. Place fish on the grill, skin down. Place sliced vegetables and cilantro on top.
  4. Smoke fish until tender and flakes easily, 45 min.- 1½ hours, depending on thickness of the fish.
  5. Serve fish with corn tortillas, tomatillo salsa, avocado slices, cilantro and lime wedges.
Marcel's Culinary Experience https://www.marcelsculinaryexperience.com/

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream by Didi Foth

Summer is finally here!  With all the rain and cold that we had in June, it felt as if it would never arrive.  It is here in its full glory- scorching hot days and warm humid nights.  When I was young, those were the type of days that would send us racing through the streets when we heard the distant music of the ice cream trucks.  The entire neighborhood would go running into the house to beg their parents for money so that we could buy the frozen treats that would cool us off and make us so happy. It was so hard to choose:  a drumstick, ice cream sandwich or Dreamsicle??  It was hard to imagine that anything could ever taste so delicious!

As an adult, there is still nothing better than ice cream on a hot summer day or on the patio at night, although my tastes have evolved a bit from the ice cream truck days.  I now know that ice cream can be made from fresh ingredients and with flavors that are only limited by your imagination – cookie dough, chocolate marshmallow, coffee, mint chocolate chip, etc.  And homemade ice cream- whether it be from a favorite little shop, a restaurant, or made at home-is the ultimate treat.

The flavors are fresh and make you think of berry fields, campfires with s’mores and chocolate shops. I have also discovered that ice cream, with an adult beverage, can be a fun dessert.  A Berry Prosecco ice cream float is as simple as adding fresh berries and a scoop of vanilla ice cream to a glass and topping it off with Prosecco.  How fun is that?

Making ice cream at home has definitely become much easier than the days churning for hours.  There are a variety of new ice cream makers on the market that allow you to eat a fresh, frozen treat within an hour of thinking of your favorite flavor, which is even quicker than hearing that first sound from the ice cream truck!   Marcel’s carries many of the items that you need to help you make these treats at home.

On Saturday, July 27, Marcel’s will have Guest Chef, Alissa Wallers of the French Pastry School, churning ice cream and making all handmade toppings in the hands-on cooking class, The Ice Cream Bar.  Think Bourbon Vanilla and Coffee ice cream with salted caramel sauce or blueberry compote.  How about a chocolate wafer ice cream sandwich cookie?  What a fabulous way to beat the summer heat and experiment with recipes and flavors.  Kids 12 and older are welcome to join this class so you can start some new family traditions – much better than chasing the ice cream truck!

Marcel’s will also be having a Neighborhood Happy Hour and Grown Up Ice Cream Social on Sunday, July 28 from 2-4 pm.  Come join us for some fun, adult ice cream drinks and a snack to beat the heat.  There is no cost for this event, but please pre-register.

Happy summer and here’s to a big scream for ice cream! 

Grilled Corn and Tomato – Sweet Onion Salad with Fresh Basil Dressing

Grilled Corn and Tomato - Sweet Onion Salad with Fresh Basil Dressing
  1. 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
  2. 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
  3. 2 teaspoons honey
  4. 1 teaspoon salt
  5. 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  6. 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  7. 8 ears of grilled corn, kernals removed from the cob
  8. 1 small sweet onion, halved and thinly sliced
  9. 1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
  10. Fresh basil sprigs, for serving
  11. 4 ounces crumbled blue cheese (optional)
  12. diced avocado (optional)
  1. Combine the vinegar, chopped basil, honey, salt, pepper and oil in a blender and blend until smooth. The dressing can be made 2 hours in advance and refrigerated. Bring to room temperature before using.
  2. Combine the corn kernals, onion and tomatoes in a large bowl. Add the dressing and toss to coat. Let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving. The salad can be made one day in advance and stored, covered in the refrigerator.
  3. Optional: Can top with 4 ounces of crumbled blue cheese and a diced avocado just before serving.
Marcel's Culinary Experience https://www.marcelsculinaryexperience.com/

Summer Sauce Sensation: Spanish Romesco by Brandy Fernow

I love when that last bell of school rings and summer rushes into our house. We quickly go from school, sports and meetings, to pool and beach time, hiking and exploring nature, and of course cook-outs and backyard parties. 
Spending the entire day outdoors and lingering into the night is a happy summer routine for my family. What it doesn’t leave is a lot of time in the kitchen prepping long meals. My solution is keeping it simple and fresh, and leaning on items I can re-configure throughout the week. My summer go-to sauce is a Spanish-style Romesco. 
Romesco is a rich sauce made with charred peppers, pureed and thickened with nuts. I add chipotle pepper with a bit of adobo sauce for warm heat, as well as lemon juice and parsley for brightness and balance. It is a gorgeous hue that not only tastes fantastic but looks amazing on just about anything. 
I always make at least a double batch (it freezes beautifully), and most often enjoy it on a simply seasoned white fish. However it is also great drizzled over shrimp, chicken, pork or a roasted cauliflower steak. Later in the week I will toss it into cooked pasta or roasted potatoes. With my kids on the go, it will be packed into a snack with pita chips and veggies for dipping. Those summer nights when the neighbors all end up in our driveway or backyard, I will pull it out with sliced baguette to share with a great summer wine. If you try it, you will find even more fabulous ways to work it into your go-to summer repertoire.
We can all take a nod from the Spanish on not only this great sauce, but also around enjoying great food and friends as an art. I hope we all find ourselves doing the same all summer long.
Chipotle Romesco Sauce
  1. 2 red bell peppers
  2. 1/2 cup blanched hazelnuts
  3. 1 chipotle in adobo, seeds removed
  4. 1 teaspoon adobo sauce
  5. 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  6. ¼ cup fresh Italian parsley, leaves only
  7. Zest of a lemon
  8. Juice of ½ a lemon
  9. 1-2 teaspoons kosher salt
  1. Roast the bell peppers over a gas burner (or broil) until skins have blackened and blistered. Remove and place in a bowl. Cover with plastic film and let steam for 10 minutes. When cool enough to handle, scrape off skin. Discard the seeds and stems.
  2. In a dry sauté pan, toast the hazelnuts for a few minutes, until fragrant and starting to brown. Remove and let cool.
  3. In a food processor, add the peppers, nuts, chipotle, adobo sauce and garlic. Pulse to combine. Add the parsley, lemon zest, juice and salt and process until smooth. Serve over just about anything!
Marcel's Culinary Experience https://www.marcelsculinaryexperience.com/

Easy Berry Sauce

Easy Berry Sauce
  1. 4 cups berries (one or more varieties, fresh or frozen)
  2. ¾ - 1 cup sugar
  3. 1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  1. Set aside 1 ¼ cup of the berries to add at the end. In a medium saucepan, combine remaining berries, sugar and lemon juice and bring to a simmer over med. heat until sugar has dissolved, about 10 minutes.
  2. Puree the berry mixture; then again bring to a simmer. Remove from heat, and add the remaining berries. Serve hot or cold.
  1. Makes 3 cups.
Marcel's Culinary Experience https://www.marcelsculinaryexperience.com/

Melon Caprese Skewers with Basil Vinaigrette


Melon Caprese Skewers with Basil Vinaigrette
  1. 1/2 cup Basil Vinaigrette (recipe below)
  2. 1 small cantaloupe, scooped into balls
  3. 1 small honeydew, scooped into balls
  4. 1 small seedless watermelon, scooped into balls
  5. 20 fresh water-packed mozzarella balls, drained
  6. 10 thin slices prosciutto, cut in half lengthwise, gathered into ruffle
  7. Basil leaves
  8. Small wooden skewers
  9. Maldon sea salt
  10. Freshly cracked black pepper
Basil Vinaigrette
  1. 1 shallot, roughly chopped
  2. 2 cup tightly packed basil leaves, stems removed (about 4 ounces)
  3. 1 glove garlic
  4. 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  5. 1/2 cup olive oil
  6. 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  7. 1 teaspoon salt
  1. Thread an assortment of the ingredients on the skewer - melon ball, basil leaf, mozzarella ball, ruffled prosciutto, etc.
  2. Arrange skewers on platter. Drizzle with Basil Vinaigrette and sprinkle with Maldon sea salt and cracked pepper.
Basil Vinaigrette
  1. Combine all ingredients in a high-powered blender and blend for 60 seconds until very smooth. Adjust salt and pepper as needed. Will keep refrigerated for up to 3 days.
Adapted from What’s Gaby Cooking
Adapted from What’s Gaby Cooking
Marcel's Culinary Experience https://www.marcelsculinaryexperience.com/


  1. 1 cup flour
  2. ½ teaspoon baking powder
  3. 1 tablespoon sugar
  4. ½ teaspoon salt
  5. 2 eggs, separated
  6. 1 cup milk
  7. melted butter
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, sugar and salt.
  2. In another medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, milk and 2 tablespoons melted butter. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. In a clean bowl, whisk egg whites until stiff but not dry. Fold whites gently into batter until incorporated. Preheat an ebelskiver pan over medium heat about 1 minute then reduce heat to low. Brush indentations with melted butter and fill about halfway with batter. Add your add-ins then pour over more batter until very close to top of pan. Cook about 2 minutes until golden brown, then flip quickly using chopsticks or skewers. Cook an additional 2 minutes.
Add-in Ideas
  1. Jam
  2. Cooked fruit
  3. Cooked meat (ham, sausage…)
  4. Cheese (shredded or soft)
  5. Cooked vegetables (asparagus, onions…)
  6. Pickles
  7. Sun-dried tomatoes
  8. Pesto
  9. Herbs
  10. Nutella
Marcel's Culinary Experience https://www.marcelsculinaryexperience.com/