Sunday, March 25, 2018

Easter Sunday 2018

 On the Menu


 



Peppercorn Crusted Salmon
8 Servings

Ingredients
8 salmon fillets, 6 ounces each
1/2 cup whole peppercorns
1/2 cup Dijon mustard

Method
To crush the peppercorns, put them in a plastic bag and smash them to bits with a rolling pin or mallet.  Then dump the cracked peppercorns on a plate.
Using a pastry brush (designated for seafood), paint both sides of the filet with mustard, and then roll it in the peppercorns until both sides are coated.
Heat grill, when grill is hot wipe the rack with oil to prevent sticking and place filets on grill.
Grill for 5 minutes on the first side, then turn and grill 5 – 6 minutes on the second side.

Note:  There's a delicate balance between perfectly cooked fish and overcooked fish.
First of all, remember the principle of residual heat: an item will hold heat when it's removed from the heat source, continuing to cook for several minutes.
For best results, cook fish until it's almost done, then remove it from the heat source and let it stand for a few minutes to finish cooking.


Orange Honey Glazed Carrots


10 - 12 Servings
Ingredients
3 bunches carrots, peeled
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Method
Cut the carrots diagonally in 1-inch-thick slices.  Place 1/2 cup water, the butter, honey, 2 teaspoon of salt, and the ginger in a large saute pan and bring to a boil. Add the carrots, cover the pan, and simmer over medium-low heat for 5 minutes. Remove the lid and continue to cook for about 20 minutes, or until all the water has evaporated. You may want to raise the heat for the last 5 minutes.

Add the orange zest and orange juice to the pan, tossing with the carrots. Simmer uncovered for about 5 minutes, until the carrots are al dente (tender but still resistant when you bite) and the sauce glazes the carrots. Add the pepper a salt, to taste.




  Green Beans with Sauteed Garlic
8 Servings

Ingredients
2 pounds green beans, trimmed, halved
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons olive oil
8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
¼ teaspoon crushed red peppers
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon black pepper

Method
Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Add beans; cook 5 minutes. Plunge beans into ice water; drain and discard bay leaf.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil, garlic and chili peppers and sauté 30 seconds. 
Add beans; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook 2 minutes, tossing frequently


 Carnitas
10 Servings
Ingredients
5 pound pork butt
1 tablespoon sea salt
1 tablespoon black pepper
¼ cup vegetable oil
½ gallon orange juice
1 pound yellow onions
6 bay leaves

Method
Cut pork into large pieces.  Season pieces with salt and pepper
Heat oil in a large sauce pan then sear pieces in the hot oil, browning all sides.
Add orange juice, onions, bay leaves and season again with salt and pepper.
Cover and simmer 1 hour or until pork is tender.
Remove bay leaves and shred pork before serving.






6 Servings

Ingredients

1 ½ pounds butternut squash, cut ½” on the diagonal

1 ½ pounds crook neck [yellow] squash, cut ½” on the diagonal

1 ½ pounds zucchini, cut ½” on the diagonal

½ bunch fresh sage, roughly chopped

¼ cup olive oil

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper



Method

Preheat oven 350 degrees

Peel butternut squash, slice in half lengthwise and remove seeds.  Slice squash again lengthwise then cut on the diagonal.

Wash then cut the crookneck (yellow) squash and zucchini in half lengthwise and cut on the diagonal.

Remove sage from the stems and rough chop.

Place the butternut squash in a bowl and mix in ½ sage, olive oil, salt and

pepper.

Place on a sheet pan and bake in oven until edges of squash is golden brown.  Approximately 45 minutes.

Combine the crookneck, zucchini squash and the remaining ingredients in a bowl and mix thoroughly.

Transfer to a sheet pan and bake in oven until edges of squash are golden brown.  Approximately 30 minutes.

Turn once ½ through the cooking time.

Once both pans of squash are done, combine them.

Serve hot

Kale with Sundried Tomatoes
6 – 10 Servings
Chef Rosalind Francis – www.harlemseeds.org
Ingredients
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (I like to use grapeseed oil)
1 bag of kale or 2-3 bunches of kale, tough stalks removed + discarded, leaves roughly chopped
12 sun-dried tomatoes, roughly chopped
3-4 garlic cloves
1-2 teaspoons Spike seasoning (I use Cajun Seasoning)
extra virgin olive oil for drizzling as needed
1-2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
Sea salt to taste
 
Method
In a large pan add oil to heat. When oil is heated add the kale. Cook kale in batches, small amounts at a time, for a minute or two, stirring constantly. Once a kale batch is cooked, remove from pan and add another batch until all the kale is cooked.
When the last batch of kale is in the pan, add the sundried tomatoes, garlic, red pepper flakes and spike seasoning, then add all the cooked kale to pan.
Simmer for another couple of minutes or so, until the kale has wilted and the liquid reduced. Add salt to taste.




Macaroni and Cheese - for Holidays Only
10 - 12 Servings
Ingredients
1 pound box elbow macaroni
4 quarts water
2 teaspoons granulated garlic
2 teaspoons granulated onion
1 tablespoon paprika
1 teaspoon basil, ground
1 1/2 cups milk
1 stick unsalted butter
4 cups (1 lb.) pepper jack cheese
6 cups (1 1/2 lbs.) NY or WI  Xtra-Sharp cheddar cheese

Method

Heat oven 350 degrees
Cook macaroni until it's al dente:  In a large pot, pour in 4 quarts of water, add salt, granulated garlic and granulated onion and bring to a boil.
Once water is boiling, add the macaroni, stir and bring the water back up to a boil.
Remove the pot from the heat and cover. Let the pot sit covered and undisturbed until the cooking time stated on the box is reached. Approximately 7 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a small sauce pan, add the milk and butter heating just long enough to melt the butter.
Once the cooking time has elapsed on the macaroni, drain it and return it to the pot.

Add the paprika and basil and mix thoroughly.
Add the warm milk and mix thoroughly.  Add the cheese and mix until well combined.
The cheese does not necessarily have to be melted, just make sure it is well distributed
throughout the dish. Mixture should be moderately moist, if needed add more milk.
Taste for flavor and adjust the seasoning accordingly. Transfer mixture to a baking dish.
Cover dish with plastic wrap and then cover with foil.  Bake for 30 minutes, then remove the
foil and plastic wrap and bake uncovered another 15 minutes or until the casserole is slightly
browned on the top and all of the milk is absorbed.


   Puerto Rico's Rice with Pigeon Peas
Arroz Con Gandules
8 – 10 Servings

Ingredients
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
For the Sofrito
·         2 tomatoes, diced
·         1 medium onion, diced
·         1 large red pepper, diced
·         1 large jalapeno peppers, dicedCarn
·         4 large cloves garlic, minced
·         ¼ bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
·         ¼ teaspoon sea salt
1 ½ teaspoons salt free Sazon seasoning
1 cup tomato sauce
2 ½ cups water
1 ½ teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons stuffed olives
1+ tablespoons salt free adobo seasoning or to taste
1- 15 ounce can pigeon peas, rinsed and drained
2 cups parboiled rice

Method
Heat a Dutch oven on medium heat, add the olive oil and sofrito ingredients, and sauté for 5 minutes.
Next add the sazon, tomato sauce and continue to sauté another minute or two.
Add the water, salt, Italian seasoning, cilantro, bay leaves and olives.
Allow the liquid to come up to a boil taste it for salt and add more salt if needed.  Add in 1 tablespoon of the adobo season taste and add more if needed until it’s well seasoned.  You want the liquid to be highly seasoned, as it will determine the final taste of the rice.
Add in the pigeon peas then bring the mixture back up to a boil.  Once the mixture is boiling, add the rice.
Stir the rice to get and gently mix until the pigeon peas are distributed throughout the rice.
Cook rice uncovered until all surface liquid is absorbed. Once most of the visible surface liquid is absorbed, stir and cover the rice.
Lower the flame to the lowest setting and allow it to cook for 20 minutes.
It’s done when all the liquid is absorbed and the grains are fluffy and fully cooked.
Remove bay leaves before serving.


 



Friday, March 16, 2018

Sunday Dinner March 18, 2018


On the Menu  
 

4 Serving
Ingredients

4 - 6 oz boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
Marinade:
½ cup olive oil
½ cup white wine (Chablis)
1 teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon crushed red peppers
1 tablespoon granulated garlic
1 tablespoon granulated onion
2 sprigs fresh rosemary, stems removed, finely chopped


Method
Preheat oven 350 degrees
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or wipe lightly with oil.

In a large bowl, whisk together all marinade ingredients.
Add chicken and mix by hand to make sure that all pieces are completely covered with marinade. Cover bowl and let chicken marinade in refrigerator 2 hours. Or overnight.
You are now going to make grill marks on the topside of the breast by using a grill or a grill pan. Then you will finish cooking the chicken in the oven.

      Place the breast on a hot grill with the top (smooth) side down point the breast towards the 10 o’clock position.
      Cook until you see the outer rim of the breast change color/texture about 3 - 5 minutes
      Pick up the breast with tongs [not a fork ] and turn it to the 2 o’clock position to complete the criss cross marks of the grill
      Grill another 3 minutes then remove from grill
      Place breast on sheet pan and bake uncovered in the oven approximately 15 - 20 minutes.
      Remove from oven and let breast sit and rest 10 minutes before cutting
      By letting the chicken rest, you are allowing it to continue cooking.

Note: Factors that affect the cooking time of meats are the size/thickness, marinade contents, the length of time meat has marinated and so forth. Our objective here is to product a well-seasoned juicy chicken breast

Chicken internal temperature must reach 160 degrees to kill pathogens and 165 degrees to be completely done.

Please be aware that the internal temperature will rise 5 – 10 degrees in the first few minutes it is removed from the heat so let it rest and continue to cook before cutting.

 Note: Use tongs/spatula for handling any meat. A folk will pierce the flesh releasing the juices thereby causing it to dry out.
 
 Caprese Pasta Salad
8 Servings
Ingredients
8 cups water
1 pound pasta (angel hair, orzo or penne)
2 teaspoons sea salt
¼ - ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 pound fresh mozzarella, ½” dice
3 Roma tomatoes, diced
1 small bunch fresh Basil, chiffonade
 
Instructions
In a large pot, bring 8 cups of water to a boil, add pasta and bring the pot back up to a rapid boil then stir.
Cover pot, turn off the burner and let pasta sit, undisturbed 6 – 8 minutes (see package for exact cooking time). 
Drain pasta in a colander then transfer to a large bowl.  While pasta is still hot, stir in the salt and mix thoroughly.
Add ¼ cup olive oil mix until pasta is coated with oil then refrigerate until pasta is cool.
Once pasta is cool, add pepper, mozzarella, tomatoes, basil and remaining oil if needed.
Mix thoroughly and refrigerate until salad is cold.
 
 
  Sauteed Kale
4 Servings
Note: You can also saute, onions, grated carrots, peppers and celery along with the garlic as shown in the photo
 
Ingredients
1 ½ pounds kale, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, sliced
½ cup orange juice, freshly squeezed
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
½ teaspoon sea salt
¾ teaspoon pepper 
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
 
Method
Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat.  Add the garlic and cook until soft, don’t let it brown.
Add the juice, kale, granulated garlic, salt and pepper mix thoroughly.  Cover and cook for 6 minutes.
Remove cover and continue to cook, stirring until all the liquid is absorbed. 
Add vinegar and mix thoroughly. 
 
Ethiopian Lentil Stew Yield: 6 – 8 servings
Note: Traditionally this stew is made with red lentils, I just didn't have any.

Ingredients
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
1 medium chopped red onion
1 tablespoon minced ginger
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tomatoes, diced
1 ½ tablespoons Berbere spice
4 cups water
2 cups dried lentils
½ teaspoon sea salt
¼ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
Hot cooked brown basmati rice 
 
Method
Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion to pan and cook 15 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Add ginger and garlic and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in tomatoes and Berbere spice, cook 1 minute, stirring to combine. Gradually add water, and whisk until blended. Increase heat to medium-high; bring to a simmer.
Rinse lentils until cold water and drain. Add lentils and salt to pot and simmer, partially covered, 45 minutes or until lentils are tender, stirring occasionally. Once lentils are done, stir in the cilantro and remove from heat. Serve over brown basmati rice.