Mike Scalise

Mike Scalise

My thoughts on SQL Server, Project Management, Fitness, and all points in between

How to Make Utica Greens: The Right Way

Utica Greens cooking on the stove

As a native Utican, I’ve tried my fair share of Utica Greens over the past 25 years, from restaurants in both the Utica and Rochester areas. I believe Georgio’s Village Cafe in New Hartford makes the best, and this is my recipe that is as close to them as you can get:

The way I made the greens is really in three separate parts (the oreganato, potatoes, and greens themselves), then I assembled them right at the end. Obviously you can adjust the recipe any way you want (e.g., if you don’t like potatoes, just skip that section).

1) The Oreganato:

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup bread crumbs (I used Progresso Seasoned)
1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano and/or Romano, grated (I used the Wegmans brand and got it grated)

Mix the oil, bread crumbs, and cheese until well blended. It should have the texture of moist beach sand. Set aside.

2) The Potatoes:

1 cup Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into 1” cubes
1/2 tsp. dried parsley (or 1 TBS fresh)
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. paprika

Preheat oven to 350 F. Toss in a bag with 1/4 cup oil, parsley, garlic and onion powders and paprika.

Roast for 1/2 hour. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

3) The Greens:

3-4 heads escarole
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 chopped Vidalia onion
6 minced garlic cloves
8 oz. chicken or vegetable broth

Clean thoroughly as shown in this video

Follow this video to a tee, washing the escarole multiple times until the water is clear, then put it in a salad spinner.

In a large pan, sauté onions in 2 tbsp of olive oil until it gets a little brown (about 5 minutes). Add garlic and cook for another minute. Chopped and add escarole to the pan. Cook down (about 5 minutes). Add broth, cover, and simmer until broth is reduced (about 45 minutes). Use tongs to move escarole to a bowl. Set aside.


1/8 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano and/or Romano, grated
6 oz. thin sliced hard salami (optional)
3-5 thin sliced sweet or hot cherry peppers (optional)
1-2 thin sliced sweet bell peppers (optional). I used these (https://www.mezzetta.com/mm5/graphics/00000001/Deli-Sliced-Sweet-Bell-Pepper-Sandwich-Strips_lg_2.png)
banana peppers (optional)

In a large pan, combine salami, peppers, and potatoes. Cook at medium heat for 3-5 minutes. Add the greens you set aside. Add enough oreganato mix to cover the greens. Add cheese. Mix together in the pan. Transfer to a pan or baking sheet that can go in the oven and put under the broiler for about 2 minutes or until crisp. Serve.

On a side note, the oreganato recipe makes more than you’ll likely need. The idea is to mix it in good with the greens. You can always add more. Same with the potatoes. I had maybe 1/4 of the diced potatoes left over. I may have just started with a bigger potato, so adjust accordingly.

The final product:

Utica Greens served with a side of homemade garlic pizza

I Received The Ellucian Outstanding Contributor Award

Today I was notified by Ellucian, a software and professional services company (primarily in higher education), that I had been awarded their Outstanding Contributor Award for my contributions to my peers and colleagues on their forums. Honestly, while I’m elated about the news, I wasn’t expecting this at all.

I have been involved with Ellucian products in some capacity for around 17 years, and as I’ve developed my skills over the years, I’ve always tried to share my knowledge with others so that they too could be great at their jobs. I never expected anything in return. I know everything I know because people were selfless enough to share and collaborate with me, so in some sense, I owe it to the community to help where I can.

In addition to a very nice letter, Ellucian also mailed me this beautiful award that I can display in my office. I’m truly grateful. Thank you to Ellucian and all of my colleagues who trusted me to help them with their questions and issues.

The Parker’s Heritage Collection from Heaven Hill Distillery

Last Updated: 06/17/2020

Why an entire post dedicated to Parker’s Heritage?

Well, when I became interested in rare whiskeys in late 2016, I came across a website that recounted the top ten rare whiskeys of the world. On that list was Parker’s Heritage 8th edition (13 Year Wheat Whiskey) from 2014. It described its color, nose, palate, and finish so eloquently that I had to try it. The problem was that it was, well, a rare whiskey. Intrigued, I began to research more about the collection and became hooked. The story, the quality, the rarity all worked for me. So if you want to know about Parker’s Heritage and my experience, read on.

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PASS Summit 2016

It was amazing, to say the least.

And yes, I know I’m a few months late to the game to blog about last year’s PASS Summit, but I only recently got my blog up and running and have had a chance to compile myriad pictures I took during the conference. Whether you’re relatively new to SQL Server and are considering going or a veteran who has been multiple times, I thought I’d share my experience in hopes that you’ll glean something from it–maybe a new nugget of information.

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Busting the Myth: Project Plans Are Developed and Managed Solely in Microsoft Project

In college, I majored in business administration and minored in entrepreneurial studies. This meant taking numerous marketing courses. I remember being taught many times over that we should use clear, descriptive, and unambiguous names if we ever started a business or launched a product or service. This way, potential customers would have no problem understanding what the company does or what function the products serve.

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How to Increase SQL Server Query Performance When You Have No Control Over the Query — A Unique Approach

Last week, at my local PASS chapter (Rochester), I gave a presentation titled “Magical Query Tuning.” In the presentation, I described a query-tuning technique that can be used when you think you’re out of options. I first learned of this method from Kendra Little at LittleKendra.com and I think it’s an incredibly interesting and not widely-known method, which is why I chose to share it with everyone.

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The Money Challenge

As we near the end of 2016, many of us are starting to think about next year. How can we make 2017 better than 2016? What should our resolutions be? What about our goals? Should we take that vacation we’ve been wanting to go on?

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