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Executive Chef at Brooksby Village Shares Holiday Recipes.

December 11, 2012

 Peabody, MA -- Michael A. Ayers, Executive Chef at Brooksby Village for the last 4 1/2 years, shares some holiday recipes.
 Stuffed Calamari W/ Fennel & Tomato sauce
For the stuffed calamari

  •  20 each large Calamari Tubes 
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • tsp chopped yellow onion
  • 10 each large shrimp  Chopped
  • 1 tsp chopped garlic
  • 1 tsp fresh parsley
  • ½ tsp fresh chopped tarragon
  • ½ tsp fresh chopped thyme
  • 1 cup seasoned dried bread crumbs
  • 3 oz melted unsalted butter
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • 1 oz toasted Pine nuts (optional)
  • 20 tooth picks

For the Sauce

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • Two bulbs fresh fennel  (sliced thin)
  • 1 large yellow onion (sliced thin)
  • 2 tbs chopped garlic
  • .25 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Instructions Calamari
Pre heat a large Sautee pan add the olive oil then the onions cook until soft

  • Add the Shrimp and let cook until they turn a light red then add the garlic let cook for one minute. Season with salt & pepper
  • Add the herbs and blend well
  • Remove from the heat and add the bread crumbs melted butter & Pine Nuts blend well.
  • The mixture should be moist and form a ball when pressed together ( add more melted butter if necessary) Let cool completely
  • Place the stuffing in each Squid tube ¾ full leaving room for the calamari to shrink
  • Secure with a tooth pick.
  • Place in a single layer in an oven proof Baking dish

For the sauce
Heat a large sauté pan to medium high heat.

  • Place the olive oil in the pan
  • Add the sliced fennel and sliced onions and cook just until the vegetables are slightly wilted (5 minutes
  • Add the garlic
  • Season with salt and Pepper
  • Add the herbs and wine and simmer for additional 5 minutes
  • Add the two cans of diced tomatoes and simmer for  additional five minutes
  • Place the sauce over the calamari cover with tin foil and bake in a 350 degree oven for 1 hour.

Carrot & Curry Soup W/ Crab cake

  • 3 oz butter
  • 2 large yellow onions (Sliced Thin)
  • 1 tbsp Chopped Garlic
  • 2 tbs curry powder
  • 1 tbsp ginger powder
  • 8 oz or 1 large Idaho potato (peeled and quartered)
  • 1 pound carrots (course chopped)
  • 32 oz chicken stock
  •  1 tbs Chopped fresh parsley
  • ½ tbs chopped fresh tarragon
  • 1/ tbs chopped fresh thyme
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • 8 oz heavy cream

Crab Cake

  • 8 oz fresh lump crab meat
  • 1 oz chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 oz chopped red onion
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh tarragon
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 tbsp mayo
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 each eggs
  • 4 oz seasoned bread crumbs
  • 3 oz olive oil


  • In a large medium sauce pot melt the butter and add the sliced onions adjust the heat to low let the onions caramelize (approximately  20 minutes)
  • Add the garlic and cook for 3 minutes
  • Add the curry & ginger powder and cook for one minute
  • Add the potatoes, carrots, salt & pepper and chicken stock raise the temperature to medium high and cook until the carrots are very soft.
  • When the Carrots are very soft remove from the heat and transfer the ingredients to a blender  Puree until a smooth silky texture is developed (Note do this in small batches and cover tightly and hold the cover down with a dry kitchen cloth,  the soup is very hot and may pop the cover of the blender when it is started if not held down)
  • On the last batch to be pureed add the fresh herbs return to the soup pot and add the heavy cream (taste the soup and make seasoning adjustments if needed) Let simmer on low heat

Crab Cakes

  •  Place the crab meat with all the ingredients (except the bread crumbs and oil in a large bowl blend well
  • Add the bread crumbs and fold them into the crab mixture.
  • Make  ten small crab cakes and place into the refrigerator for at least ½ hour to let the cakes set
  • In a sauté pan heat the oil to medium place the crab cakes in the sauté pan and sear each side to a golden brown)

Place the soup into a bowl and place a crab cake in the center of the bowl. Garnish with Extra virgin olive oil
Brooksby Village has three large clubhouses featuring an on-site medical center, staffed by full-time doctors, five restaurants, two convenience stores, two beauty parlors, a TV studio, a swimming pool, activity rooms, classrooms, game rooms and even two branches of a bank.  Residents also have the opportunity to take part in hundreds of different clubs and activities.  The community also has its own Interfaith Chapel on campus that serves as the physical foundation for a strong faith-based community.