Alessi presents 'In the Kitchen': Radio host Marianne Murciano

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Marianne Murciano, co-host of WLS-AM "Sirot and Murciano," is "In the Kitchen." Part 1. (WLS)

In our segment "In the Kitchen," we challenge cooks of all walks of life to create a dish using the ingredients we give them. We give them ingredients at the start of the show and they have to create a dish by the time we get to their segment.

Wednesday's "In the Kitchen" featured Marianne Murciano, co-host of the "Sirott and Murciano" radio show on WLS-AM. Besides being a Chicago personality, she is also an avid cook.

We set out Alessi products that must be used, one protein and some kitchen staples - then the cooks need to work their magic!

Our Friends at Alessi sent Marianne and a lucky member of our studio audience home with a gift basket of goodies.

For all the Alessi products, visit: http://alessifoods.com/

Marianne was given the following products:

-Alessi Sun Dried tomato in Extra Virgin Olive Oil
-Alessi Strained Tomatoes
-Alessi Garlic Puree
-Alessi Premium Italian Pasta Organic Penne

For more about Marianne, visit the WLS-AM website.

Visit Marianne's website on healthy eating: http://susosfork.com/

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Alessi Presents "In the Kitchen": Radio host Marianne Murciano. Part 2

RECIPES

Spicy Hearty Meat Sauce

Spicy foods don't just blast us with a tasty zing in our mouths, they also supply key vitamins and minerals and may even help curb salt and sugar cravings. Adding a kick to your meat sauce can be a game changer. Here's the way to pep up your traditional pasta meat sauce.

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large finely diced onion
3 tablespoons garlic puree
1 pound organic ground beef
2 17.6 oz cans or boxes of all natural strained tomatoes

1 can tomato paste
1 teaspoon hot sauce (e.g. Chalula Hot Sauce)
1/2 cup white wine
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Directions:

In a large skillet over medium heat saute the finely chopped onion in olive oil for 5 minutes.
Add garlic puree and stir over heat for 2 minutes.
Add meat and continuously blend into the onions for 5 minutes.
Add tomato sauce and paste and blend in.
Add hot sauce, white wine, oregano, pepper flakes, salt and pepper and simmer for 15 minutes stirring occasionally.
Serve over pasta.

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Yields: Serves 6

Mushroom and Sun Dried Tomato Bruschetta
Ingredients:

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
12 oz box of baby portobello mushrooms sliced
4 large sun dried tomatoes
1 tablespoon garlic puree
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon White Balsamic Reduction
1/4cup parsley chopped
2 tablespoons fresh grated Romano cheese
2 slices of crusty Italian bread

Directions:

In a large skillet heat oil over medium high heat until hot but not burning and cook mushrooms, sun dried tomatoes and garlic with salt and pepper 3 minutes.
Turn off the heat and add White Balsamic Reduction and parsley.
Toast bread and sprinkle Romano cheese.
Top with mushroom tomato mixture. Sprinkle with cheese over the top.

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
Yields: 2 servings

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