Thursday, June 27, 2013

Mushroom & Wilted Greens Toast with a Poached Egg

Serves 2

2 slices whole wheat or multi-grain bread
2 tbsp. olive oil1 large clove garlic, minced
2 cups sliced mushrooms – you can use any variety you prefer
4 cups chopped greens, tough stems removed – you can use mustard greens, kale or chard here
1/2 teaspoon grainy Dijon mustard
2 large eggs
1 tsp. white vinegar
salt and pepper, to taste-
Toast (using your favorite method) the bread and go ahead and arrange each one on its own plate.- In a medium sized skillet, heat the oil over medium heat until faintly shimmering. Add in the minced garlic and saute until soft but not brown – 1 to 2 minutes. Add in the mushrooms, stir to combine and cook until they begin to release water. Throw in the chopped greens and stir again to get everyone mixed up. Stir in the bit of mustard and allow the greens to cook until tender but not mushy – 2 to 3 more minutes. Meanwhile, fill a medium sized soup/stock pot with water and bring to a boil. Add in the vinegar. With the end of a spatula or spoon, stir the water vigorously in a clockwise motion to create a swirl. Drop the cracked egg into the water and form slightly with your utensil. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until the white is solid around the yolk but not to soft-boiled egg stage. Using a slotted spoon or small screened scoop, remove the eggs from the water. To serve, divide the greens mixture into two and top the toasted bread with it. Place a poached egg on top of the mixture. Season with a bit of fresh ground pepper and serve immediately – the joy of this is the runny egg so be speedy in serving & eating it.


Roasted Beet and Summer Squash Salad with Figs, Chevre, Cucumber Relish and a Balsamic Reduction

Serves 4-6

2 beets
3 flying saucer squash
4 figs, halved
1 lemon cucumber
1 cup panko bread crumbs
1 egg, beaten
Chevre, or cheese of your choice
2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon lavender
olive oil for frying
salt and pepper to taste
ROASTED BEETS - Preheat oven to 450 F. Rinse beets, remove leaves, and wrap in foil. Place on a baking sheet and roast for an hour until the beets are tender through. Let cool until you can handle them. (Tip: wear gloves or place a plastic baggie over your hand to protect your fingers from getting stained.) Using a paring knife, peel the skin off the beets. It should come off easily. Slice into ¼ inch rounds. Set aside. FIGS & BALSAMIC REDUCTION - Heat a small saucepan to medium-high heat. Sear the fig halves, flat side down for a few minutes, just until the surface caramelizes a bit. Remove and set aside. In the same pan, lower the heat and add the balsamic vinegar and sugar. Let simmer until the sauce becomes thick and syrupy. Set aside. CUCUMBER RELISH - Cut the cucumber into a fine dice. You can leave the skin on if you’re using lemon cucumbers since their skin is softer than regular green cucumbers. Mix with rice vinegar, a sprinkle of salt and pepper, and set aside. FRIED SUMMER SQUASH - In a deep frying pan, heat 2 inches of oil to right below smoking point. I like the taste of olive oil (don’t use the expensive stuff), but you can use vegetable oil if you prefer. Prepare your assembly line: squash sliced into ¼ inch rounds, egg wash, dish filled with bread crumbs seasoned with lavender and a pinch of salt and pepper. I prefer panko because of its extra crunch, but you can use regular dried breadcrumbs as well. Dip each slice of squash into egg wash, then coat with breadcrumbs. To test the oil, drop a little piece of eggy breadcrumb into the pan. If it just sinks, the oil is not hot enough. If it burns quickly, the oil is too hot. If it starts to bubble right away and floats, it is just the right temperature and you’re now ready to start frying up your squash. Let the fried squash drain on a plate lined with paper towels. Sprinkle with a little salt while they’re still hot. Set aside. CHEESE - You can use any cheese you’d like, however, fresh goat cheese and beets are a traditional pairing. If you’re like me though, and have an aversion to goat cheese (I know, one of my great downfalls as a foodie, I disappoint myself in this respect time after time), try a gooey burrata, or Cowgirl Creamery’s buttery Mt. Tam, or a ricotta salata for something sharper and firmer. Now you’re ready to assemble and plate. Layer beets, cheese, squash, repeat, and top with the cucumber relish. Garnish with the figs and balsamic reduction. Enjoy!

Broccolini and Feta Galette

"Pies and tarts don't always have to be sweet. This savory rustic tart matches Broccolini, a natural hybrid of broccoli and Chinese kale, with salty feta for a delicious meal wrapped in a pretty package."

Serves 8
2 cups all-purpose flour, (spooned and leveled)
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Coarse salt and ground pepper
2 bunches Broccolini (1 pound total)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
2/3 cup crumbled feta (3 ounces)
1/4 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
1 large egg, lightly beaten
In a medium bowl, combine flour, oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/3 cup cold water. With a fork, stir to combine. Knead dough 1 minute. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 400 degrees, with rack in lower third. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook Broccolini until bright green, 1 minute. With tongs, transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate. Roll out dough to a 14-inch round; transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle dough with Parmesan and top with Broccolini, leaving a 2 1/2-inch border. Top with feta and red-pepper flakes; season with salt and pepper. Fold dough border over filling and brush with egg. Bake until crust is golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Cook's Note
Swap It: Use broccoli florets instead of Broccolini. Goat cheese can replace the feta.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Guadalajaran Swiss Chard Quesadillas

Serves 4
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 small onion, chopped ( 3/4 C)
2 garlic cloves, minced ( 2 tsp)
1 jalapenos or 1 serrano chili, minced
1/4 teaspoon cumin seed
1/8 teaspoon oregano
1/4 cup tequila
12 ounces swiss chard, trimmed
8 (6 inch) corn tortillas
1 cup light monterey jack cheese, grated
Heat oil in pot over medium heat; add onion and saute 5 minutes, until golden. Stir in garlic, chile, cumin and oregano, and saute 2 minutes. Add tequila and simmer 1 minute, or until liquid has evaporated. Stir in chard; cover; reduce heat to medium low, and steam 5 minutes, or until chard wilts. Uncover, and cook 3 minutes or until liquid has evaporated. Place 1 tortilla in skillet over medium heat. Sprinkle with 1/4 C cheese; top with chard mixture and second tortilla. Cook 2 minutes per side, or until browned. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Slice into wedges and serve.


Apple Cider Braised Greens

Serves 16
1 1/2 pound(s) mustard greens
1 1/2 pound(s) collard greens
1 1/2 pound(s) Swiss chard
2 tablespoon(s) olive oil 
3 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 1/4 cup(s) apple cider
1 tablespoon(s) cider vinegar
2 red cooking apples such as Gala or Rome Beauty, unpeeled and cut into 3⁄4-inch chunks 
Remove stems from mustard greens; discard stems. Trim stem ends from collard greens and Swiss chard; remove stems from leaves. Cut stems into 1-inch pieces; cut leaves into 2-inch pieces. Rinse leaves and stems; drain well. In 8-quart saucepot, heat oil over high heat until hot. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds to 1 minute or until golden, stirring constantly. Add as many leaves and stems as possible, cider, vinegar, and 11/2 teaspoons salt, stirring to wilt greens. Add remaining greens in batches. Reduce heat to medium. Cover saucepot and cook greens 15 minutes. Stir in apples; cook, partially covered, 10 minutes longer or until stems are very tender and most of liquid evaporates, stirring occasionally. With slotted spoon, transfer to serving bowl.


Pinto Bean Salad

Serves 4
1/2 cup dry pinto beans, picked over and soaked for 12 hours
1 1/2 cups water
1 medium organic tomato, diced
1/4 cup diced red onion
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
2 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
2 Tbsp fresh minced parsley
1/4 cup organic sweet corn, fresh or frozen, blanched 1 minute
1 tsp ume plum vinegar, or to taste
Cook dried beans on stovetop or in crockpot until soft. Drain and combine olive oil, garlic, parsley, ume vinegar, lemon and lime juices in a small mixing bowl and mix thoroughly. Place cooked beans and all remaining ingredients in a medium mixing bowl. Pour the dressing over and toss well. Serve as is or refrigerate 1 hour before serving.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

What to do with Japanese Salad Turnips?

Eat them, of course!
These versatile veggies are good any way you slice 'em, and are commonly eaten raw, un-peeled. 
~Cut into bite-sized pieces, serve with apples and roasted nuts atop a bed of greens
~Thinly-sliced for a tasty crunch in sandwiches
~Grated and added to salads, wraps, savory pancakes, you name it!
~Eaten like an apple
~Gently roasted with balsamic vinegar, other root veggies, and herbs
~Added to miso soup for a refreshing summer meal
Happy crunching!


Roasted Beet and Radish Salad with Pistachios, Smoked Trout, & Creamy Dill Vinaigrette

8 oz mixed baby lettuces, washed and spun dry
1 bunch radishes, washed and sliced thin
2-3 spring onions, sliced thin
4-6 beets, roasted, peeled and cut into quarers
4 Tbs. pistachios, toasted
1/4 c. white wine vinegar
3/4 c. olive oil
2 Tbs. minced dill
3 Tbs. creme fraiche or Mexican crema
1 smoked trout, removed from skin & bones, flaked
Place vinegar in a small bowl and slowly drizzle in olive oil, whisking constantly. Season with salt and pepper and whisk in dill. Toss lettuces with vinaigrette, reserving 1/3 in bowl. Arrange greens on serving bowls and place beets, onion and radishes on top. Whisk creme fraiche or crema into remaining vinaigrette and place a dollop on top of each salad. Top with smoked trout and pistachios and serve.


Homemade Butter with Green Garlic

Two stalks green garlic
1/4 cup fresh parsley
1/2 tsp salt
1 pint heavy cream

Wash and trim the ends off the green garlic stalks. You want to use as much of it as possible, including the green stem, but you'll have to take at least one layer off the outside to get it clean. Cut into 2-inch lengths and place in the bowl of a food processor with the parsley. Process until finely minced. Add the salt and the cream to the food processor and turn it on. Let the mixture whirl about 5 minutes, until you see the curds and whey separate. The curds are the butter; the whey you want to drain off and use in another recipe. Scoop the curds lightly into a sieve lined with cheesecloth or a paper coffee filter. Let drain at least two hours, or even overnight. You may have to press the curds and knead them to get out the excess liquid. You'll be left with a soft, smooth butter. Spread liberally on good bread, or use it to top grilled steak.