Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Perfect Summer Salsa


Ingredients:

  • 3 to 4 medium tomatoes, diced
    1 medium onion, finely diced
    1 large bell pepper (red, green, or yellow), seeded and finely diced
    3 to 4 jalapeno peppers, seeded and finely minced
    1 pepperoncini pepper (optional), seeded and finely minced
    1/3 to 1/2 of a cilantro bushel (About 1/2 cup chopped)
    2 large garlic cloves, pressed
    2 tablespoons lime juice OR lemon juice
    Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. In a medium bowl, mix together all of the veggies. Drain any excess juice.
  2. Stir in lemon OR lime juice and lightly season with salt and pepper to taste. (You can also use a food processor to make a smoother salsa). 

Braised Leeks with Parmesan


Ingredients:

  • 6 leeks, not too thick if possible
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  •  Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • ½ cup dry white wine, like sauvignon blanc
  • 1 ½ ounces Parmesan, freshly grated (1/3 cup)

Instructions:

  1. Cut the ends and the dark green leaves of the leeks, and cut in half lengthwise. Place in a bowl of cold water for 10 minutes, then run under the faucet to remove any sand that may be lingering in between the layers. Peel off thick outer layers and discard.
  2. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a wide, heavy skillet that will accommodate all of the leeks in one layer. Place the leeks in the pan, cut side down, and cook, shaking the pan and moving them around with tongs, until they are lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Using tongs, turn the leeks over and cook on the other side until they are lightly browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Turn the leeks back over so that the cut side is down. Peel off the outer layers if they are papery, as they will not soften when the leeks are braised. Pour in the wine and stir to deglaze the bottom of the pan, then add enough water or stock to come just to the top of the leeks. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer uncovered for 20 to 25 minutes, until the leeks are thoroughly tender when pierced with a knife. Most of the liquid should have evaporated by this time. Meanwhile, preheat the broiler.
  3. Transfer the leeks to an oiled ovenproof pan if your skillet cannot go under the broiler. Using tongs, turn the leeks so that the flat side is up. If there is still a lot of liquid in the pan, pour it off. Sprinkle the Parmesan over the leeks. Place under the hot broiler until the cheese has melted and is beginning to color. Remove from the heat and serve.

Dill Pickles


Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups distilled white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 4 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 3/4 teaspoon dill seeds
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 2 pounds kirby cucumbers, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 3/4 cup coarsely chopped dill
  • 3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

Instructions:

  1. In a large, heatproof measuring cup, combine the vinegar, sugar, salt, mustard seeds, coriander seeds and dill seeds with the hot water and stir until the sugar and salt are dissolved. Let the brine cool.  
  2. In a large bowl, toss the cucumbers with the dill and garlic. Pour the brine over the cucumbers and turn to coat. Place a small plate over the cucumbers to keep them submerged, then cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Refrigerate the pickles overnight, stirring once or twice. Serve cold.

Ratatouille


Ingredients:

  • 2 medium eggplant, diced into 1/2" pieces
  • kosher salt
  • 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 bell peppers, cut into 1/4" spears
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1/2 c. dry white wine
  • 2 zucchinis, sliced into 1/4 " coins
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 c. halved cherry tomatoes
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
  • Bunch of fresh basil
  • Crusty baguette (for serving)

Instructions:

  1. Place eggplant in a colander and toss with a big pinch of salt. Let sit for about 20 minutes, then pat the eggplant dry to remove excess moisture.
  2. In a Dutch oven (or a large pot), heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add eggplant and season with salt and pepper. Cook until golden all over, about 6 minutes, then remove the eggplant.
  3. Add remaining tablespoon of oil to pot. Add onion, bell peppers and bay leaf and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion and peppers are beginning to turn tender, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add tomato paste and stir until it’s fragrant, about 1 minute, then deglaze the pan with the white wine and reduce until most of the liquid has evaporated. Stir in zucchini and cook until tender, about 4 minutes more. Stir in garlic, cherry tomatoes and oregano.
  5. Season mixture with red pepper flakes, salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes start to break down.
  6. Add the eggplant back to the pot and stir to combine. Garnish with basil and serve warm or at room temperature with baguette.

Moroccan Carrot and Chick Pea Salad


Ingredients:

  • For the Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest and 3 tablespoons lemon juice, from one large lemon
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice, from one large orange
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons honey
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • For the Salad:

  • 1 pound carrots, peeled and coarsely grated
  • 1/3 cup currants
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted (see note below)
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint or cilantro (or a combination), plus more for serving
  • 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoons finely minced shallots, from one large shallot
  • 1 garlic clove, minced

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl (large enough to mix the entire salad), whisk together all of the ingredients for the dressing.
  2. To the dressing, add all of the ingredients for the salad and toss well. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to a few hours. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary (you might need more salt, lemon or honey, depending on the sweetness of the carrots). Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with more fresh chopped herbs. Serve cold.
  3. Note: To toast the almonds, preheat the oven to 350°F. Place the almonds on a foil-lined baking sheet for easy clean-up. Bake for about 5 minutes, until the almonds are golden.

Stuffed Leeks with Blue Cheese, Raisins and Almonds


Ingredients

  • 4 large leeks, rinsed (3 1⁄4 lb.)
  • 1 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1⁄2 cup olive oil
  • 1⁄2 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • 1⁄3 cup raisins, chopped
  • 1⁄4 cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 1⁄4 cup dill, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • 1⁄2 tbsp. hot sauce
  • 1 1⁄2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 24 almonds, coarsely chopped
  • 2 anchovy fillets, chopped (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Prepare a woodburning or indoor oven to 425°. Line a large rimmed baking sheet or cake pan with a 15x34-inch piece of parchment paper (half the sheet will be hanging off), or use two 13x17-inch pieces.
  2. Cut the dark green parts off of the leeks, then finely chop them until you have 1 cup; reserve. Starting 1⁄4 inch from the roots of the leeks, cut the leeks lengthwise down the center, leaving the bottommost layer intact. Run the leeks under cold running water, gently separating the leaves to release any dirt, then pat dry.
  3. Transfer the leeks to the prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle 1⁄4 tsp. salt over each leek.
  4. In a medium bowl, mix the oil, butter, raisins, cheese, dill, vinegar, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, pepper, almonds, anchovies (if using), remaining salt, and reserved chopped leek greens. Spoon a scant 1⁄2 cup of the mixture down the center of each leek.
  5. Fold the hanging edge of the parchment paper over the leeks, or place a second piece of parchment on top, to cover. Tuck the edges under and fold, creating a sealed pouch.
  6. Roast for 30 minutes. Then remove and discard the top layer of parchment paper. If cooking with wood fire, shift the pan closer to the heat source. For an indoor oven, preheat to broil.
  7. Roast or broil the leeks until the leeks and filling are slightly charred in places, 2–3 minutes. Carefully cut each in half crosswise using kitchen shears or a sharp knive, and serve.

Roasted Potatoes with Chive Pesto


Ingredients:

  • 1¾ pounds fingerling potatoes, halved lengthwise
  • 1 tablespoons plus ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ cup (packed) chopped fresh chives, plus more for garnish
  • ½ cup (packed) chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 tablespoons slivered almonds, chopped walnuts, or pine nuts
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. In a medium bowl, toss potatoes with 1 tablespoon oil to coat; season generously with salt and pepper. Spread potato halves in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast potatoes, turning occasionally, until tender and golden brown,25-30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, combine 1/2 cup chives, parsley, almonds, and garlic in a processor. Pulse until finely chopped. With machine running, gradually add remaining oil through feed tube and process until incorporated. Transfer chive pesto to a small bowl. Stir in lemon juice, then 2 tablespoons water. Season pesto with salt and pepper.
  3. Transfer potatoes to a platter. Drizzle with half of pesto; sprinkle with additional chopped chives. Serve with remaining pesto.