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Robert St. John

Restaurateur, author, enthusiastic traveler, & world-class eater.


From my travel journal October 7, 2011: Everything here is so loose. Tuscans are even more laid back than Southerners. We are quickly learning that there aren’t a lot of specifics here. Plans, roads, addresses are obscure concepts and mere suggestions. It’s kind of a maybe-so-maybe-not-no-big-deal-either-way society. Throw in a passion for food and living, and one could get used to living around here pretty quickly. The stress level is so low I can almost feel my hair growing back.


2 Tbl Extra virgin olive oil
1 cup Yellow onion, julienned
1 tsp Garlic, minced
4 cups Zucchini, cut into 2” batons (about 6 small zucchini)
1 Tbl Kosher salt
1 tsp House seasoning blend (see recipe)


In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium. Add the onions and sweat until softened, about 4-6 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and continue cooking until the zucchini just begins to soften but still has a little firmness. Serve immediately.

Recent Recipes

Cinnamon Cream Syrup

This pairs perfectly with Sweet Potato Pancakes. It may be better than the pancakes themselves (and they’re great). But try this recipe on regular pancakes, waffles, and French toast.

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Sweet Potato Pancakes

I ate my first sweet potato pancake during my only visit to Gatlinburg, Tennessee. My family, along with another couple and their young children rented a cabin in the mountains during spring break. I woke every morning and headed into town for breakfast. I would imagine Gatlinburg has more pancake houses per capita than any place on the planet. My problem is that I never found a good-tasting pancake until I happened across sweet potato pancakes at one of the pancake houses. We serve a version of this recipe at The Midtowner. The Cinnamon Cream Syrup is a must.

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RSJ’s Smoked Yellowfin Tuna Dip

The smoked tuna dip at Harbor docks is, by far, the best in the area. Actually, it’s the best I have ever tasted. Over the years I have taken a few stabs at recreating a Harbor Dock’s version, but always come up short. After several failed attempts, and facing a cookbook deadline, I finally worked up a recipe for smoked crab dip, which is excellent, though my wife still prefers Harbor Docks smoked tuna dip.

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