Saturday, January 31, 2015

Seattle v.s. New England - The Best of

On the Menu

Mom:  To us, the Superbowl is all about the great commercials.
Angelique:  Thanks to you don't even have to wait for the game to see them.  But it's still a great time to get together with friends and. . . .EAT!
Mom:  Instead of wings and chips, we're doing something different.  In honor of the teams playing, we've got the best of each region.
Angelique:  But the trick was finding foods that are party friendly, quick, easy and won't mess up the rug when drunk Uncle George drops his plate on the floor.
Mom:  And you know he will.  These are some regional favorites that should add a nice twist to the regular game time menu.
Angelique:  #GoTeam
Mom:  Which one?
Angelique:  Who cares!!

New England Crab Cakes
8 - 10 Mini Cakes

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 ½ tablespoon vegan mayo
1 tablespoon scallions, chopped
1 ½ tablespoon parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon lemon juice
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
⅔ cup of panko breadcrumbs
12 ounces fresh Maine crabmeat
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil for frying

In a mixing bowl whisk together the mustard, mayonnaise, scallions, parsley, lemon juice and cayenne pepper.
Add breadcrumbs, crabmeat, salt and pepper then gently mix by hand, leaving the crab in chunks then form into 1 1/2 ounce cakes.
Add the oil to a nonstick sauté pan and heat over medium heat.
Add the cakes and cook just until golden brown on each side.
If they break apart as they are turned, simply reform them with a spatula.

Note:  New England crab cakes are often served over greens with lemon vinaigrette for a great summer lunch

 Chipotle Maple Ginger Salmon
50 – 75 - 1 inch Cubes
⅔ cup pure maple syrup
½  cup soy sauce
1 teaspoon adobo sauce, from canned chipotle chilies
1 – 2 chipotle chilies, minced
¼ teaspoon ground chipotle pepper
½  - 1 teaspoon minced ginger
2 ½ - 3 lbs salmon fillet, skinless, cut in 1" cubes

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F
Line a sheet Pan with parchment paper or wipe pan lightly with oil.
Whisk syrup, soy sauce, adobo sauce with chilies, ground chipotle pepper and minced ginger in a dish to blend.
In a large bowl or dish, add the salmon and pour the marinade over it turning to coat well.
Marinate 1 - 3 hours refrigerated, turning occasionally.  Bring salmon to room temperature before cooking.
Add cubes to prepared sheet pan with space between each piece.
Bake in a preheated oven 10 minutes and remove from heat.
Pour the remaining  marinade into a small saucepan.
Boil marinade until reduced to a half cup, about 5 minutes.
Pour sauce over cubes, then transfer pieces to a serving dish.
Garlic Fries
4 to 6 servings

3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
2 ¼ pounds russet potatoes cut lengthwise into French fries
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
¼ cup chopped flat leaf parsley
4 garlic cloves, minced

Preheat oven to 450°F.
Coat a large  baking sheet with oil.
Toss potatoes and all dry seasonings in a large bowl and mix until potatoes are coated with mixture.
Arrange in a single layer on baking sheet.
Roast the potatoes, turning occasionally, until browned and tender, about 30 minutes. Increase heat to 500°F. Continue roasting until fries are deep brown in spots, about 5 minutes.
Whisk remaining ½ Tablespoon oil, garlic, and parsley in a large bowl. Add in hot fries, and toss to coat. 
New England Clam Chowder
5 servings
4 center-cut bacon strips
2 celery ribs, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
3 small potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 cup water
1 bottle (8 ounces) clam juice
3 teaspoons reduced-sodium chicken bouillon granules
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups fat-free half-and-half, divided
2 cans (6-1/2 ounces each) chopped clams, undrained

In a Dutch oven, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove to paper towels to drain; set aside. Saute celery and onion in the drippings until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in the potatoes, water, clam juice, bouillon, pepper and thyme. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
In a small bowl, combine flour and 1 cup half-and-half until smooth. Gradually stir into soup. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 1-2 minutes or until thickened.
Stir in clams and remaining half-and-half; heat through (do not boil). Crumble the reserved bacon; sprinkle over each serving. 
 Asian Slaw
8 Servings
1 head green cabbage, shredded
½ head red cabbage, shredded
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ cup rice wine vinegar
¼ cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons sesame oil
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon crushed red chili peppers
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 carrots, shredded
4 scallions, julienned

Toss the cabbage together in a large colander and set in the sink.
Sprinkle the cabbage with salt and let stand for 15 minutes.  The salt draws out some of its moisture so that the slaw remains crunchy.
In a bowl whisk together the vinegar, soy sauce, oil, chili peppers, ginger and garlic. 
Toss together with the cabbage, carrots, and scallions.
Refrigerate and serve cold.




Friday, January 23, 2015

Sunday Dinner January 25, 2015

On the Menu

Maple Mustard Glazed Salmon
4 Servings

2 pounds salmon fillet
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 teaspoon granulated onion
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
⅓ cup 100% maple syrup
3 tablespoons whole grain mustard
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
½ teaspoon thyme
½ teaspoon sea salt and
freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 425º.
Rinse salmon and pat dry with a paper towel.
Mix together the granulated garlic, onion, ginger and cayenne pepper and sprinkle the seasoning blend on both sides of the fillet.
Make glaze by cooking maple syrup, mustard, vinegar and thyme, salt and pepper until it thickens, remove from heat.
Place salmon, on oiled grill pan, brush with glaze. Cook for about 10 minutes, brush with remaining glaze and cook for another 5 minutes.
Transfer to serving dish.
Lemon Garlic Spinach
6 - 8 Servings

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
½ teaspoon crushed red chili peppers
1 heaping tablespoon minced garlic
2 pounds baby spinach
¼ teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

In a sauce pan, heat oil and chili peppers, add garlic and saute on medium heat 1 minute do not let garlic brown.
Add spinach, sea salt and lemon juice, mix thoroughly and saute just until spinach is wilted and all ingredients are thoroughly mixed.
Serve immediately.

Curried Lemon Rice
4 Servings
1 cup brown rice
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
½ teaspoon black mustard seeds
½ teaspoon crushed red chili pepper
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon curry powder
1 small carrot, grated
1 lemon, juiced
½ teaspoon sea salt
¼ cup cashews or any nut, chopped

Cook rice as directed on the package.  Let it cool for 10 minutes, then spread it on a plate, mix in 1 teaspoon of oil so that the grains will not stick together.  Set aside for later use.
Heat remaining oil in a skillet; add mustard seeds, when seeds start to pop, add crushed chili peppers, onion powder, curry powder and carrots. Sauté until the carrots are slightly cooked.
Squeeze the lemon juice in a cup, add salt then mix it in the rice.
Add the rice to the skillet, mix thoroughly and cook until rice is warmed through.
Taste for flavor, add more lemon juice if desired.
Top with nuts and serve.

Curried Carrot Soup
6 - 8 Servings
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1 ¼ pounds carrots, sliced
4 cups vegetable broth or [water with 1 large bay leaf]
1 orange, juiced
 ½ lemon, juiced
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 tablespoons curry powder

Heat olive oil over medium heat in the bottom of stockpot. Add onions and cook until soft, but do not brown. Add ginger, garlic and carrots and cook until fragrant, about 3-6 minutes.
Add broth, orange & lemon juice and seasonings. 
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until carrots are tender, about 20-30 minutes.
If using bay leaf, remove it from soup and discard.
In batches, puree soup in blender [or in the pot with an immersion blender].

Thin with additional broth as needed and season to taste with salt and pepper

8 Servings
4 large Roma tomatoes, ½” dice
1 large red bell pepper, ½” dice
1 large green bell pepper, ½” dice
1 medium red onion, sliced
1 cup feta cheese, diced
3 large cucumbers, seeded, diced
½ cup kalamata olives, halves
1 head red leaf lettuce, chopped
For the Dressing:
½ cup red wine vinegar
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon oregano, dry
½ teaspoon thyme, dry
½ teaspoon sage, dry
½ teaspoon basil, dry
½ teaspoon rosemary, dry
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon ground pepper

Dice tomatoes, bell peppers, onions and feta [about a half inch dice].
Cut cucumber in half [lengthwise], scoop out the seeds with a spoon and dice.
Slice or cut olives in half.  Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.
Thoroughly whisk together all the dressing ingredients and pour ½ of the dressing over the vegetables. Mix thoroughly and refrigerate at least 2 hours prior to serving. 
Serve on a bed of red leaf lettuce, add more dressing if needed.
Remaining dressing can also be used as a marinade for meat, fish or vegetables.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Sunday Dinner June 18, 2015

On the Menu

 Pork Chops and Rice
4 Servings
½ teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 teaspoon granulated onion
½ teaspoon thyme, ground
4 pork chops, bone in
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
1 cup long grain brown rice
1 tablespoon minced garlic
½ teaspoon sea salt
1 ½ cups vegetable broth
4 onion slices, separated into rings
¼ teaspoon pepper 

In a small bowl, combine the salt, granulated garlic, granulated onion and thyme. Sprinkle mixture on both sides of the chops and let it marinate 1 hour or overnight in the refrigerator.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a medium skillet; heat the oil over medium-low heat.  Add the rice, minced garlic and ½ teaspoon sea salt.
Saute until garlic is slightly browned, about 3 minutes.
Transfer rice to a baking dish. Pour the broth and 2/3 cup water over the rice.
Arrange the pork chops on top of the rice. 
Spread the onion rings over the chops and sprinkle them with the pepper. Cover the dish with plastic wrap* then aluminum foil and bake until the rice is tender. Check for doneness in 45 minutes. If needed continue cooking until rice is done.
Change the oven to broil, add a bit more broth if the rice is dry and return the dish to the oven for a couple of minutes until the pork is browned.

*No the plastic wrap will not burn, it will seal the pan so that steam will not escape while rice is cooking.

Curried Parsnips
4 Servings
1½ pounds parsnips, peeled, sliced or cubed
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ medium onion, diced, fine
1 tablespoon curry powder
½ cup vegetable stock
½ teaspoon sea salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 scallions, sliced
¼ bunch cilantro, coarsely chopped

In a large skillet over medium flame, heat the oil; add the onions and cook, stirring constantly for 1 minute. 
Add the curry powder and mix thoroughly. 
Add the stock, salt, pepper and parsnips, mix thoroughly and simmer covered over low heat until tender, about 10 minutes.
Stir in the scallions and garnish with cilantro prior to serving

Faux Browned Butter Green Beans with Pecans
 6 servings

Traditionally this dish is prepared with butter and bacon, but that's just not New Age Soul Food Style. 

2 pounds of fresh green beans, trimmed
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 teaspoons minced garlic
½ cup raw pecan, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon sage, dried
½ teaspoon thyme, dried
½ teaspoon Creole Seasoning  
1 orange, juiced
½ lemon, juiced
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped, fine

Trim beans and cut in thirds on the diagonal, set aside.
In a large skillet heat the oil, add onion and saute until onions are translucent.
Add garlic and saute 1 minute.
Add the pecans saute another minute.
Add the beans, dried seasonings and orange juice; mix thoroughly, cover reduce heat and simmer about 6 minutes or until beans are slightly tender.
Taste and adjust seasonings if needed. 
Squeeze fresh lemon juice on top, add parsley and mix thoroughly.
Remove from heat and serve immediately.