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Cauliflower Rice, Almond, Curry

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Cauliflower Rice, Almond, Curry

Here is a fantastic vegetarian recipe that everyone immediately fell in love with. At first glance this really doesn’t look or sound like an exciting dish but the surprise is underneath the vegetables. The secrete sauce is creamy in texture but without the fat. It is basically a indian flavor romesco sauce that was fantastic with the cauliflower. This is a go to vegetarian dish that is bound to make any guest go wild. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Cauliflower

1 lb of riced or diced cauliflower

1 1/2 tbsp of curry powder

2 tbsp of olive oil and butter


“Indian Romesco Sauce”

2 roasted yellow peppers

1 Serrano

1/4 cup marcona almonds

1 garlic clove

1 tbsp of graham Marsala

1/3 cup of olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste


1 head of purple cauliflower

2 tbsp of olive oil

1 tbsp of ras al hanout

Salt to taste

1/2 cup of roasted sliced almonds

Cilantro


For the Romesco,

Place all the ingredients into a vitamix except for the olive oil and salt. Puree all the ingredients for 30 seconds and then drizzle in the olive oil. Season with salt and set aside.

For the Cauliflower, Preheat oven 400

Place the cauliflower in a bowl and drizzle with half of the olive oil. Season with salt, and ras al hanout powder. Toss to incorporate everything evenly. Spread evenly on a sheet pan lined with parchment or foil ( optional, I do this to make clean up easier ). Place the cauliflower in the oven and roast for about 20 minutes. Meanwhile

To Finish,

In a small pot add butter and oil to a pan along with the rice cauliflower add a tsp of salt. Cover and turn on medium heat. Cook for 5 minutes and then add the curry powder. Cook for another 5-8 minutes until the cauliflower is tender. Using a round cookie ring add some sauce in the bottom of the ring. Then add the riced cauliflower on top of the sauce. Then take the roasted cauliflower and place on top of the riced cauliflower. finish with toasted almonds and cilantro. Serve and enjoy!


Rice Cauliflower .JPG


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Gnoccetti Sardi with Pesto

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Gnoccetti Sardi with Pesto

How To Make Home Made Pasta Gnoccetti-Rocchetti

What is one of the easiest and classic pasta recipes to make? Pesto pasta! How about home made Gnoccetti or rocchetti. Southern Italy uses more of the duram wheat or semolina flour without the use of eggs in their pasta dough. This is a great pasta for anyone who is allergic to eggs. The key to using the semolina flour is using warm water which hydrates the flour. Traditionally the pasta is just semolina and water. I added a little bit of 00 flour which makes the pasta, I think, a little softer and tender, than just all semolina. This pesto sauce you use can be the traditional recipe if you using pine nuts but in this case my son is allergic to all nuts; so I’ve made pesto for him a few times using pumpkin seeds instead of pine nuts and he absolutely loves it! Another win for pasta because he doesn’t like tomato sauce. We now have another alternative for school lunches instead of sandwiches everyday. He can easily take this to school and eat it cold for lunch. Not only do the kids love it, which they normally complain about anything green, pumpkin seeds are a lot cheaper on the wallet than pine nuts. I saw recently they were almost $20 a pound. Not cheap. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Semolina Pasta

2 cups semolina

1 cup 00 flour

1-1/4 cup warm water

salt optional


Pesto

4 oz basil

2 garlic cloves

1/3 cup of roasted pine nuts ( pumpkin seeds if nut allergy)

1 oz of parmesan cheese

1 -1/4 cup of olive oil

salt to taste


For the Pasta,

In a bowl with both flours mixed well. Make a hole or well in the center of the flour. Add the water and mix with your hands until you make a dough. Knead the dough for 10 minutes until smooth and then wrap and allow it to rest. Then using a bench scrapper or knife cut the dough in half. Then cut the dough into 5 equal slices. Take the slices and roll using your hands into a rope. Cut the rope into dime size pieces that are round. Then using a pasta board take your thumb and apply a little pressure and flick them off the board. Here is a video I made to show you the technique. This is exactly what you would do if you were making gnocchi hence the name Gnoccetti.

For the Pesto,

Place all the ingredients except for the olive oil in a food processor. Puree for 15 seconds and then drizzle in the olive oil until you have a smooth paste. If you want a thicker pesto use less oil to make a thick paste. If you want a more runny sauce use more olive oil. Season with salt and set aside.

To Finish,

Have a pot of salted water on high heat to bring to a boil. Once boiling add the gnoccetti to the water and cook for about 3 minutes until they start to float and are tender. Meanwhile add 4 tbsp of pesto to a saute pan on medium heat. Strain out the pasta and add 4-6 oz of pasta water to the pan with the pasta and pesto. Toss the pasta around a few time so the sauce coats the gnoccetti ( you could easily add cream and a little butter to make it a little richer but I didn’t here). Then adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Check seasoning and then place a few spoonfuls on to a few plates. Grate with fresh parmesan cheese. Serve and enjoy this easy pasta dish!

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Sweet Potato with Thai Red Curry, Black Garlic, and Myoga

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Sweet Potato with Thai Red Curry, Black Garlic, and Myoga

“Twist on Thai”

Want a new and exciting sweet potato dish that is not only delicious but healthy too? If you are like my wife and not the biggest fans of sweet potato this is a recipe bound to convert all those haters into believers. Not only is it easy but it is absolutely delicious!

This recipe could be served as an appetizer or an entree. This was a huge hit with Jp and his guests that I served recently. This dish has everything from sweet, to spice, to crunch and acid. A great balance of flavors and textures that is bound to make any guest extremely please. This is a fantastic vegetarian recipe that could easily be a whole meal in itself. This a not a time consuming recipe as well and the sauce can be made ahead of time and just reheated when you need it. Here is the recipe on a asian inspired sweet potato. I hope you enjoy it!

Red Curry Sauce

1 finger of ginger sliced

1 lemongrass stalk sliced

1/2 onion sliced

4 garlic cloves

1 star anise, 1 cinnamon stick, 3 limes Kaffir lime leaves (if you have them)

2 red peppers chopped

2 cans of coconut milk

4 oz of red curry paste

2 1/2 oz of palm sugar or granulated sugar

1 tsp of fish sauce (optional)

2 tsp of sesame oil

1/4 cup of each fresh thai basil, mint, cilantro leaves

4 white sweet potatoes roasted

1 cup of wild rice fried (see recipe)

Pickled Myoga Ginger

6 myoga ginger cut in quarters

1/2 cup of rice wine vinegar

1/3 cup of sugar

Black Garlic Mayo

2 bulbs of black garlic peeled

1 cup mayo

salt

micro cilantro

For the Red Curry,

In small sauce pot on medium heat add sesame oil, onion, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, cinnamon stick, red pepper, star anise and kaffir lime leaves.  Cook for 10 minutes without browning.  Then add sugar and red curry paste and cook for 1 minutes or until the sugar dissolves.  Then add the coconut milk and bring to a simmer.  Cook for 5 minutes and then turn off the heat, add fish sauce and your herbs to steep for 10 minutes.  Strain through a fine mesh strainer, keep warm until ready to use. You might need to adjust the seasoning with a pinch of salt.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Take sweet potato and drizzle with olive oil and salt.  Place the sweet potatoes in a roasting and place in the oven.  Cook sweet potatoes for about an hour or until tender.  Take out and let them rest. 

For the black garlic mayo,

Add all the ingredients into a blender and puree until smooth. Adjust the seasoning with salt. Place into a squeeze bottle until ready to use.

For the pickled myoga,

Place vinegar, salt, and sugar into a pot. Bring to a boil, place sliced myoga in a heat proof bowl. Pour the hot vinegar over the ginger. Cover and allow to come to room temp.

To Finish,

Simply take the sweet potato and cut it into 1 inch thick pieces. Place it in the bottom of the bowl. Add some hot red curry sauce around the sweet potato. Take the black garlic mayo and place dots of the sauce around the bowl. Add the fried wild rice on top along with myoga, and cilantro sprigs. Serve and enjoy this sweet and spicy vegetarian dish!

sweet potato and red curry.JPG

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Jicama Rose with Black Garlic and Avocado

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Jicama Rose with Black Garlic and Avocado

Healthy Snack

Here is a great appetizer that will quench any craving. A guiltless snack that packs a big punch in the flavor face. This is a great raw, vegetarian dish that can be eaten anytime of the day. It is only a few ingredients and anyone can make it. This is a great, healthy bite after a hard workout to get your body recovering after all those calories you burned. The great thing about this recipe is people who don’t like this “healthy” kind of food will immediately be hooked. This recipe has everything from crunchy, to salty, to spicy, to creamy with the good fats from the avocado.

Another great thing about this recipe is that you can make it in about 20 minutes if you have all the ingredients on hand. An easy recipe that can be made before your guests arrive and can leaving you feeling stress free about entertaining for your dinner party. This is definitely one that will be a go to. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

1 Jicama peeled and sliced 1/16-thick

1-2 avocados

4 red radishes sliced thin

4 oz ssamjang paste

1 cup of fresh mint leaves

1 oz of micro cilantro

Black Garlic Mayo

3 black garlic bulbs peeled

1 cup of mayo or veganaise

salt to taste

For Jicama,

Peel and slice the jicama thin on a mandolin.  Lay down 7 slices of jicama in a row, slightly overlapping each slice. Add a tsp of ssamjang paste to the row of jicama slices. Then add the sliced avocados on top of the row of jicama with ssamjang paste, season them with salt. On top of the avocados add a row of the sliced radishes and season them lightly with salt. Then starting at one of the jicama roll the long row up into a a cylinder or rose shape. You might have to trim up the bottom with a sharp knife so it can stand easily. Continue the process until you have 4-6 orders.

For the black garlic mayo,

Add all the ingredients into a blender and puree until smooth. Adjust the seasoning with salt. Place into a squeeze bottle until ready to use.

To Serve,

Simply place one jicama rose on a plate. Using squirt bottle add dots of black garlic mayo on the inside of the rose. Then garnish with some of the micro cilantro and herbs. Serve and enjoy this wonderfully healthy snack!

jicama rose.jpg

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Pici cacio e pepi

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Pici cacio e pepi

“Cheese and Pepper”

There is nothing more basic and easy then this classic pasta recipe that is nothing more than black pepper and parmesan cheese. The secrete to making this easy pasta recipe is making the “sauce”. With the addition of butter, and a little pasta water added to the cheese; the whole things comes together as one of those sauces that hangs on to each individual piece of pasta. The French have a sauce called buerre monte. This “sauce” is simply prepared with a touch of water while you whisk in cold butter to make an emulsion, its not really a sauce. It really is melted butter that has been emulsified when its still warm and hasn’t separated from the milk solids. But you can add this warm emulsified butter to any protein or vegetable and it glazes and stick to whatever you add it to without separating. This is basically the same principle that you would use to make this cacio e pepi sauce with the addition of parmesan cheese and black pepper to the water and butter. This is the secrete to have a “sauce” stick to the pasta without having your pasta covered in a mound of sauce (like how all american pasta is cooked with loads of sauce”, I’m guilty at times doing this, I love sauce! )

Using the pasta water gives you a little salty pasta flavor that is traditional Italian cooking. Now you can use any noodle that you prefer. This recipe was one that was inspired by my recent trip to Tuscany. I have never had Pici pasta before, I don’t think I have ever seen it, before spending a week in Cortona, Italy. I had Pici on three different occasions during that week. Once was with squab that was amazing and the other two were with ground veal which was equally amazing. I was in love immediately with Pici. All three dishes had this basic butter sauce, maybe a touch of cream added, but typically what you would see in northern Italian pasta cuisine. Pici noodles are a mix between spaghetti and bucatini except the noodle aren’t hollow like bucatini. It is a basic eggless or dried pasta dough that is rolled out into ropes. Not too thin, the noodles should be a little bigger/thicker than spaghetti. I didn’t take the time to completely dry these noodles out so I used them more like a fresh pasta. Here is the easiest pasta recipe, I hope you enjoy it!

Semolina Pasta

2 cups semolina

1 cup 00 flour

1-1/4 cup warm water

salt optional


3/4 cup pasta water

4 oz of shredded parmesan cheese

1-1/2 sticks of butter

12 oz of pici pasta cooked

1-2 tsp of fresh cracked pepper

salt to taste


For the Pasta,

In a bowl with both flours mixed well. Make a hole or well in the center of the flour. Add the warm water and mix with your hands until you make a dough. Knead the dough for 10 minutes until smooth and then wrap and allow it to rest for 30 minutes. Then using a bench scrapper or knife cut the dough in half. Then cut the dough into 5 equal slices. Cut those slices in half again so you should have 10 small pieces of dough about an inch long or so. Take one piece and start rolling them with your hands into long ropes. You don’t want to stretch the dough but the pressure from your hands should lengthen the pici pasta. Continue rollin until you have long noodles ( you might have to cut them in half if they are really long) that a touch bigger than spaghetti. Then place on a sheet pan lines with parchment and lots of semolina flour. Try not to add a lot of flour when your rolling out the pici (this might dry out and crack your dough)


To Finish,

Fill a large pot with salt water and bring to boil. Add the pasta to the water and cook for 3-5 minutes until tender. Meanwhile in a large sauté pan add 3/4 cup of the reserved pasta water, the grated Parmesan and Butter. Swirl the pan around so that the butter and cheese start to melt and become a sauce like consistency (1 minute). Add the drained pasta, toss to coat the pasta well and season with salt. Garnish with black pepper and more parmesan cheese. Serve and enjoy this fantastic, easy pasta dish that will quickly be a go to, in your recipe book!.

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Pine nut Custard with Matsutake and Wasabi

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Pine nut Custard with Matsutake and Wasabi

Here is a little appetizer I made a few weeks ago utilizing some matsutake mushrooms which are very limited and normally very expensive because of the lack of abundance in the wild. It sometimes can be called a pine mushrooms because they normally grow at the base of a variety of pine trees. The matsutakes have a firm, meaty texture with a earthy flavor. In this recipe I thought it would be fun to pair the matsutake mushrooms with pine nuts. I thought a warm savory custard with cooked and raw matsutake would go great with a smoked beef/mushroom broth. Topped with a little fresh wasabi. This was a fun dish that was loved by Jp and Eloise. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Pine nut custard

1 1/2 cup cream hot

2 eggs plus 2 yolks

3/4 cup toasted pine nuts

Salt to taste

Smoked bone broth

5 smoked beef rib bones

4 oz mixed mushrooms dried

1 leek

1 garlic bulb

10-12 cups of water

Salt to taste

6 matsutaki mushrooms quartered

2 tbsp butter

2 tbsp olive oil

2 matsutaki mushrooms sliced raw

1 wasabi fresh grated

Opal basil and cilantro

For the Smoked beef broth,

Place all the ingredients into large stock pot and bring to a boil. Turn down to a simmer and cook until you have about 4 cups left. Strain and season with salt. Set aside and keep warm

For the Pine nut custard, Preheat oven to 300 degrees

Place cream and roasted pine nuts in a pot and bring to a boil. Once it has come to a boil place in a vita mix and puree until smooth. While the blender is on add the eggs one at a time. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Strain (if desired) and pour into 6 small ramekins that have been sprayed or buttered. Place the ramekins into a baking dish and fill the dish half way up the sides of the ramekins with hot water. Cover with foil and bake 17-19 minutes or until the custard has just set. Take out and let it cool.

To Finish,

Place the custard back in the oven just for a 3-4 minutes to warm back up. Meanwhile in a small sauce pan add olive oil, butter, and quartered matsutake. Cook for 4-5 minutes and season with salt and pepper. Using a paring knife run your knife around the the inside wall of the ramekin. Flip the pine nut custard into the bowl. Add the cooked and raw mushrooms to the dish. Add a small fresh grated wasabi on top of the custard. Add the smoked bone broth and some herbs. Serve and enjoy!

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Tomato and Gala Melon "Terrine" with Blis Solera Vinegar

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Tomato and Gala Melon "Terrine" with Blis Solera Vinegar

This was a simple dish using just a few ingredients and take a little extra time to present it in a "fancy" way.   This is what summer eating should be about, less time in the kitchen and more time outside with friends and family.  I served this recipe for dinner guests late this summer as tomatoes were still in full swing and melons become ripen.  The garden had some amazing varieties of heirloom tomatoes that I normally wait until they are just ready to pick.  Tomatoes really only need salt and olive oil when they are that fresh.  Melon and tomatoes are a perfect combination that go together seamlessly with little added flavors to compliment one another.  In this case basil, olive oil, a really good aged vinegar and salt.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.

Galia melon sliced 1/8 inch thick  (Mold)
4 large heirloom tomatoes 1/8 inch thick
Blis aged Solera sherry vinegar (here)
Olive oil
Salt 

1 oz of sunflower sprouts
3 tbsp of sunflower seeds
3 tbsp of fresh basil leaves
Olive oil
Salt 

For the Terrine,

You will need a square pastry mold  or something similar to have the shape of the terrine.  I peeled and cut the melon into slices and then used the mold to cut perfect squares.  I continued until the majority of the melon was cut into squares (Set the scraps of the melon aside to eat later or maybe use in a gazpacho for another recipe).  Repeat the same process for the tomatoes insuring that you use only the center cuts of the tomatoes and not the skin.  Once you have the perfect squares of each melon and tomatoes, alternate melon and tomatoes inside your pastry mold until you reach the top.  Then carefully holding on the top remove the mold.  I then carefully wrapped them in plastic wrap somewhat tight and placed them in the refrigerator until I was ready to serve later that evening. Repeat the same process until you have 5 terrines.  You should have something that looks like this picture.

tomato .jpg

 

To Finish,

Simply take all the ingredients for the salad and place them in a bowl.  Drizzle lightly with olive oil and salt and set aside.  Take the terrine out of the refrigerator and slice the terrine in half right down the middle keep the plastic wrap on to help keep the shape (continue with the others).  Then after the terrine is cut place each half on a plate carefully removing the plastic wrap (should have enough for 10 servings).  Drizzle the top with olive oil and salt.  Place the salad next to it.  Then add some of the age blis solera vinegar to finish the dish.  Serve and enjoy!

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Artichoke and Black Truffle

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Artichoke and Black Truffle

Here is a summer artichoke and truffle recipe.  This is a fantastic vegetarian recipe that uses just a few ingredients.  Artichokes can be a intimidating ingredient but it really just takes a little time taking the outer leaves away and peeling the green stem.  Once you have done that you can remove the hearts on large artichokes.  Depending on how big the baby artichokes are, you can sometimes leave the heart intact because of the maturity of the vegetable.  This recipe is really simple in concept. You cook the artichokes in a flavorful broth, add some truffle and fat to the dish and that's basically the recipe.  Jp absolutely loved this dish and hopefully you will too.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Artichoke Baragouile
3 large artichokes and 12 small baby artichokes
4 lemons
1 cup of white wine
7 cups of water
1 onion
6 garlic cloves
1 sprig of thyme , 1 bay leaf
1 tbsp salt 

Artichoke and Black Truffle Puree
6 small artichokes cooked from above
1/3 cup of cream heated  
2 tbsp of black truffle (winter Australian)
splash of truffle oil (if desired)
1 tbsp of butter
salt and pepper to taste

Fresh black Australian truffle slices
Tarragon leaves and amaranth

For the Baragouile 

Take the artichokes and pull off the outer tough leaves of the large and small artichokes (wearing gloves helps you not to get pricked). Then take a pairing knife, cut off the tops and trim the bottoms of the green outer skin trying to keep the stem intact.  Trim the stems as well of all the green tough skin.  Immediately take one half of a lemon and wipe the artichoke all over to stop the oxidation process.  Place in a pot filled with water, white wine, and 1 lemon juiced.  Continue until you have all the artichokes peeled; the large artichokes should just be the bottoms and the small artichokes should have some of the inner leaves intact and you can cut them in half. Then add the rest of the ingredients along with salt to the pot.  Take a piece of parchment paper and cut a large square.  Then fold it over in half and then in half again.  Then fold it diagonally into a triangle.  Then fold two more times continuing the triangle.  Then cut the point of the triangle off and cut around the outer edge to fit the size of the pot. Open the paper up (This is called a Cartouche), the paper should be a round circle that fits inside the pot with a whole in the middle of the paper.  This is basically a lid for the artichokes to keep them submerged under the water.  Bring the pot up to a slowly to simmer, where the water is just barely bubbling.  Cook the artichokes until they are just tender all the way through.  Test the artichoke with a cake tester to check the doneness.  Take off the heat and let the artichokes cool to room temp.  

Take half of the small artichokes and place in a vitamix with cream, truffle, and oil.  Puree until smooth and add butter salt and pepper.  Take out and keep warm.  

To Finish,

Take the large artichoke bottoms and slice in 1/8 inch thickness.  Place them in the pan with a little of the artichoke cooking liquid, butter, and olive oil.  Take the baby artichokes and quarter them and add to the pan as well.  You are just heating the artichokes up and seasoning them with a little salt if need be.  Once hot, then add truffle puree to the plate.  Add the sliced large artichokes on the bottom.  Then add the quartered baby artichokes on top.  Add sliced fresh truffles, tarragon, and amaranth to garnish.   Drizzle with a little extra olive oil if desired.  Serve and enjoy!

 

 

 

truffle artichoke .jpg

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Tomato "Salad" with Porcini, Hearts of Palm, Chrysanthemum

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Tomato "Salad" with Porcini, Hearts of Palm, Chrysanthemum

June, 2018 in California was a busy time for the Dejorias, with dinner parties nearly every day. That makes it a busy time for me, too, and a challenge to think of a variety of menus. It also happens to be the month of JP and Eloise’s 25th anniversary.  A few guests were invited for the evening. What to fix? JP was not eating red meat, and I had served fish many times in the week already. I didn’t want to serve chicken or run to the store for some other protein. Earlier in the week I had visited a local organic farm. I bought all kinds of vegetables and fruit, more than I actually needed, but summertime in California means abundance of fresh produce. Depending on the weather and month, you have many wonderful varieties of vegetables and fruit, week after week: berries, stone fruit, melons, squashes, blossoms, greens, peas, beans, tomatoes, mushrooms, citrus, onions, carrots, beets, salsify, corn, broccoli, asparagus, artichokes, potatoes, and I could go on. With so much to choose from, sometimes the hardest thing is actually deciding what to make. So I decided not to run to the store and buy a protein for the main course.  This was one of the 5 courses I served that evening for the special anniversary dinner. Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!  

 

Tomato “salad” hearts of palm, porcini and chrysanthemum

1 cup of cherry tomatoes roasted
4-5 large heirloom tomatoes roasted (for tomato water see below)
1 yellow heirloom tomato sliced
1 large red radish sliced thin
1/2 cucumber shaved on mandolin
1 cup of sourdough croutons
1 porcini shaved
Mint leaves, radish flowers, chive flowers

8 1 inch pieces of hearts of palm
2 1/2 cup water
4 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 tsp salt

Chrysanthemums oil
1 large bundle chrysanthemum blanched
1 1/4 cup oil
Pinch of salt

Tomato water here

For the Hearts of palm,

Place all the ingredients into a pot and bring to a boil.  Turn down to a simmer and cook for roughly 20 minutes or until the hearts of palm are tender. (Time really depends on how thick and big the palms are).  Once tender allow to cool to room temperature and you can pour all the liquid into a container to keep and preserve the hearts of palm.

For the Chrysanthemum oil,

Place blanched chrysanthemum leaves and oil together in a vita mix and puree for 45 seconds.  Then pour into a chinos and let it strain without pushing the pulp through the chinos ( let it drip that way you don't get any of the pulp in your oil).

To finish,

Take a one slice of yellow heirloom tomato and place in the bottom of each bowl.  Season with a  pinch of salt.  Add slices of hearts of palm around the bowl.  Add the roasted cherry tomatoes, the sliced porcini, and radish the bowl.  Ladle 2 oz of tomato water to the bowl.  Finish with herbs, flowers, and croutons.  Serve and enjoy! 

 

hearts of palm.jpeg

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Summer Vegetable "Tikka Marsala" with Chutneys

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Summer Vegetable "Tikka Marsala" with Chutneys

This is really a summer vegetable dish with a tomato "broth"  The idea was to have like a vegetable "curry" bowl with a tomato butter sauce, but instead of a red, somewhat thicker tomato sauce I decided to make it out of the tomato water.  I wanted to have the consistency more like a broth than a thick sauce.  The color I was looking to be more clear as well.  I think overall it was a success.  The tomato broth didn't have that deep indian flavor I was looking for because it just simply wasn't cooking a long time like a traditional marsala might be.  Flavors were good and light which is what you want on a hot summer evening. The chutneys went well with it and gave a another layer of flavor.  Here is the recipe for my interpretation of a vegetable "tikka marsala" I hope you enjoy it

1/2 head of cauliflower sliced 1/8 inch thick roasted
12 oz of brussels cut in half roasted
8 oz baby squash blanched
6 oz of blanched green peas
8 oz of blanched chopped green beans
8 oz of roasted baby tomatoes
8 oz of baby carrots roasted and sliced
1 tsp of minced garlic and ginger
1 tbsp of curry powder plus 1 tsp
1 tbsp of cumin plus 1 tsp
1/4 tsp of cayenne
1/2 tsp of graham masala
1/4 cup of fresh mint and cilantro
1/4 cup of pea flowers and sorrel

Curry oil

1 1/2 tbsp of curry powder
1 cup of vegetable oil 

Mango Chutney
1 1/ 2 cups cider vinegar
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 tbsp of oil
1/4 cups raisins
1 cup sugar
1 clove
1 star anise
1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger and garlic
1 cinnamon stick
1 jalapeño cut in half
2 large fresh mangos medium diced

Tomato Chutney
1 cups cider vinegar
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 tbsp of oil
1/4 cups raisins
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp of cumin
1 tbsp of graham masala
1 star anise
1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger and garlic
1 cinnamon stick
2 jalapeño cut in half

Tomato Water
700g of tomato (7-8 tomatoes roughly)
4 tbsp of butter
1 tsp of curry, cumin powder, 1/2 tsp of cayenne
salt to taste

For the Tomato water

Juice tomatoes in a vegetable juicer.  Then take juice and place in a pot, heat over low heat. Simmer for 15 min until solids separate from the liquid.  Remove from heat skim the pulp from the top.  Then strain through a fine mesh strainer that is lined with cheese cloth or coffee filter.  You should be left with a clear tomato broth.  Then place tomato water back in the pot, add spices and cook for 5 minutes.  Then stir in the butter and until smooth. Season with salt and keep warm.

For the Chutneys,

In two different pots one for the tomato and one for the mango.  In a hot sauce pan add one tbsp of oil to each pan, and cook the onions with the ginger and garlic, cinnamon and star anise for about 3 minutes then add the raisins and mangos/and tomatoes for the other pot. . Add vinegar and sugar Bring to boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until mixture thickens but some juices remain, stirring frequently, about 25 minutes. Remove from heat and cool completely. Then (Can be prepared  days ahead.) Cover and refrigerate.

To Finish,

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a stainless bowl add cauliflower and drizzle with a little oil and 1 tsp of curry and cumin, and salt.  Place on a sheet pan lined with parchment and roast in the oven for 10-12 minutes.  Repeat the same process for the brussels and carrots although they might need a few more minutes in the oven than the cauliflower (17 min for the brussels and 25 minutes for the carrots).  In a small saute pan add olive oil and salt to the baby tomatoes.  Roast them in the oven as well for 18 minutes.  Take out and cool all the vegetables.  Then in a large saute pan add 2 tsp of curry oil, ginger, garlic, and all the vegetables with the remaining spices 1 tsp of cumin, curry, cayenne, graham marsala.  Cook for 3 minutes until hot.  Adjust seasoning with a some salt if need be.  Then portion out the vegetables in 4 separate bowls.  Add 4 oz of tomato broth to each bowl.  Top each one with the herbs and flowers.  Finish with a spoonful of each chutney with the vegetables.  Finish with another drizzle of curry oil around the bowl.  Serve and enjoy!

Vegetable %22tikka Marsala%22.JPG

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Cheese Agnolotti Chestnut Pasta with Brussels and Basil

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Cheese Agnolotti Chestnut Pasta with Brussels and Basil

Here is pasta dish that I wanted to highlight with chestnuts.  Chestnuts are fantastic ingredient in the winter that have that natural kind of sweetness to them.  Chestnuts can be very versatile from simply roasting them to ground up into pastry or in this case pasta.  I had an impromptu dinner and decided to serve this as one of the courses.  Here is another great vegetarian recipe that will please any guests you might have over for dinner or lunch.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Chestnut pasta
200g or roughly 1 1/3 cup chestnut cooked and peeled
2 1/2 cup flour
1 cup semolina
4 eggs plus 2 yolks
2 tbsp water
Salt

8 oz petit basque finely grated
4 oz Comte finely grated
2 oz  sartori bellavitano Espresso coating removed and finely grated
8 oz creme fraiche
Salt  and pepper 

10 oz Brussels sprouts slice in thirds and fried
8oz mitake mushrooms
1/2 cup chestnuts halved
8 oz chicken broth or vegetable (vegetarian)
1 stick of butter
Salt and pepper 

Basil leaves

For the Cheese Filling,

In a bowl mix all the finely grated cheese with creme fraiche and season with salt and pepper.  Then place in a plastic disposable pastry bag.  Set aside in the refrigerator until the pasta is ready.  

For the Pasta

Place 2 cups of flour and chestnuts in a food processor.  Puree until completely smooth.  Then add the rest of the flour with semolina in a bowl. Make a well in the center of the flour.  Add eggs, water, and salt.  With a fork stir the egg mixture until it starts to form a ball of dough.  Then use your hands to form the dough.   Add more flour if the dough is wet.  Knead the pasta for 5 minutes and then cover and rest for at least 30 minutes. 

Take your pasta and cut in half.  Leave one half covered while you work with the other half.  Take the half of the pasta with a rolling pin and roll until the dough is thin enough to fit inside the biggest setting on your pasta machine ( I use the kitchen aid attachment).  Then run the pasta all the way down to the lowest setting twice.  Dusting the dough with flour if it is too wet. Then on the third time run it down to the second to last setting.  Again, Use a little flour for dusting.  You should have long sheets at this point.  Using your pastry bag pipe the cheese mixture along the bottom of the pasta leaving about a 1/2 inch from the edge.  Run it along the whole length of the pasta sheet leaving about an inch or two at the ends.  Then take a pastry brush or spray bottle of water and brush the top portion of the pasta sheet.  Take the bottom part pasta closest to the filling and roll over to the brushed top portion.  You should now have a long tube like pasta running all the way down the length of the pasta.  Now, at every 1/2 inch use your index fingers and press down with with each index finger to create a little "ravioli"  Continue the same thing all the way down the pasta sheet.  Then using a pinwheel cutter cut away the excess pasta at the top.  Then cut in between each press that you make with your fingers to create each agnolotti.  

For the Brussels 

In a small sauce pot add 1/2 cup of grape-seed oil and bring up to 325 degrees.  Take your brussels that are sliced and quickly add them to a pot and immediately cover the pot.  Cover the pot for about 20 seconds until all the natural water in the brussels has been cooked out.  If you don't do this the oil will splatter everywhere ( just think water and hot oil, bad combination) After 3-5 minutes the brussels will become nice and crispy and golden brown.  Take a strainer and strain out.  Season immediately with salt.  Set aside

To Finish,

In a large saute pan add 1 tbsp of butter, oil, and mitake mushrooms.  Cook for 3 minutes.  Add your chestnuts and cook for another 2 minutes and then pour in the chicken or vegetable broth.  Meanwhile place your pasta in salted boiling water and cook for 2-3 minutes until they float to the top.  Strain off and place in the saute pan.  Let it simmer for 1-2 minutes and then add the rest of the butter to make a pan sauce.  Season the whole pan with salt and pepper.  Place a few spoonfuls of pasta and mushroom into each serving bowl.  Finish with the fried brussels and fresh basil leaves, Serve and enjoy!

 

chestnut pasta.JPG

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Vegan Curry with Sorghum, Winter Vegetables, and Mustard Seeds

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Vegan Curry with Sorghum, Winter Vegetables, and Mustard Seeds

Here is a recipe that was inspired by a lunch I had not too long ago at a local indian restaurant.  They vegetable curry that was saturated with mustard seeds.  Mustard seeds I know is local staple of the Indian cuisine but I haven't seen indian dishes that have been dowsed with mustard seeds.  I had a bunch of winter vegetables in the refrigerator fennel, kohlrabi, turnip, white sweet potato, and romanesco.  They all made it into this dish.  Sorghum is a grain that is typically used in india and it is used in two different methods here.  The first is simply boiled, the second is popped, like popcorn.  Because the grain is small the popcorn is really small.  This looks like a creative dish but it has all the flavors of an indian comfort food.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it!

Vegetable curry
1 small fennel sliced
2 turnips medium diced
2 white sweet potatoes medium diced
1 large kohlrabi medium diced
1 tbsp ghee and 1 tbsp of ginger diced
2 tbsp of yellow mustard seeds
3 tbsp of brown mustard seeds
2 cardamom pods
1 tsp garlic chopped
2 tbsp curry powder
1 tbsp cumin powder
1 tbsp coriander crushed
1 Serrano sliced
Tops of kohlrabi chopped
2 cans coconut milk
1/2 cup sorghum water
Salt to taste and cayenne if needed

1 cup of sorghum soaked
1 finger of ginger and turmeric
1 tsp salt
6 cups water
Pressure cooker for 20 minutes 

1 Romanesco
1 cauliflower
1/2 cup yogurt
1 tbsp tandoori paste
3 tbsp water
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt to taste

1/3 cup sorghum popped in microwave 

Brassicas flowers
Cilantro
Mint

For the Sorghum 

Soak the sorghum in cold water for 30 minutes to an hour if possible.  Then add the rest of the ingredients to a pressure cooker and bring up to heavy pressure. Cook for 20 minutes and then allow the pressure to release naturally.  Meanwhile place a 1/3 cup of dried sorghum in paper bag and place in the microwave.   Cook for 1:30 minutes season with salt (and other spices if desired). Take the lid off the pressure cooker and drain the excess water and reserve for the curry.  Set aside and keep warm. 

For the Curry,

In large braising pan on medium heat add ghee, ginger, mustard seeds, cardamon.  Cook for 1 minute to release the aromatics. Next add fennel, kohlrabi, turnips, sweet potato, serrano, garlic,   curry, mustard seeds, cumin, and coriander.  Sauté for 5 minutes and then season with salt, add coconut milk, and 1//2 -1 cup of the sorghum water.  Cover and cook for 20 minutes or until the vegetables.  Once all the vegetables are tender add the kohlrabi tops and turn off the heat.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees,

In a blender add yogurt, water, olive oil, and tandoori paste and puree until smooth.  Cut the romanesco into individual pieces.  Take the yogurt mixture and slather the romanesco all over.  Season with salt and roast in the oven for 15 minutes.  Take out and finish the dish.

To finish

Heat curry up for a minute to make sure everything is hot.  Add a few spoonfuls of the vegetables into a bowl.  Add the tandoori romanesco on top.  Add some of boiled sorghum to the dish.  Finish with mint leaves, cilantro, popcorn, flowers, and micro cilantro.  Serve and enjoy!

Vegetable Curry.JPG

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Eggplant "Parmesan"

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Eggplant "Parmesan"

Here is a little modern take on eggplant parmesan.  Instead of breading the eggplant I simply grilled it.  There is something so delicious about charred eggplant. There isn't an easier way to prepare eggplant then simply charring the outside completely and then allowing it to steam until soft.  When eggplant is charred the inside becomes this creamy, smoky, and this wonderful luscious texture.  The flavor is one that is hard to describe and beat.  Simple, but it goes a long way.  Once it is charred you peel the outside and cover with a rich tomato-butter sauce.  It really is that simple.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.  

10 medium size eggplants grilled (completely charred) 

Yellow tomato butter 

3 yellow tomatoes
1 garlic clove
4 basil leaves
1/4 cup of champagne or white wine(leftover)
1/4 cup cream
1 stick of butter
salt to taste

1 cup of tasted bread crumbs
1/4 cup of fresh grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup of basil leaves
3 tbsp of chive flowers and basil flowers
1 tsp of espelette pepper
Salt to taste

For the eggplant,

2 ways to do this.   First is you place your eggplant directly on the hot spot of your grill and just let all sides get black or if you have a gas stove you can put the eggplant directly on the flame of your gas burner and do the same.  The eggplant should begin to release its juices.  (approximately 3-4 minutes on each side.)  You want to char the eggplant really good but not burn the eggplant so much that there isn't any "meat" left inside the eggplant.  If you cook your eggplant for about 15-20 minutes and it is charred on every side and feels pretty soft then place the eggplant in a bowl (while hot) and cover with plastic wrap.  Allow to cool completely Basically you are steaming the eggplant at this point to insure that the eggplant will be cooked all the way through.  Once cooled the eggplant should be very soft all the way through.  Carefully peel the eggplant leaving the stem on and set on sheet pan lined with parchment paper.

For the tomato butter

Chop yellow tomatoes with garlic and place in a small sauce pan with white wine or champagne.  Season with a pinch of salt and turn on medium heat.  Cook for 10-12 minutes until all the wine is almost gone and then add the cream.  Cook for another 10-12 minutes and then place in the vita mix with basil.  Puree until smooth and then slowly add the butter piece by piece until a smooth consistency is formed.  Adjust the seasoning with salt and set aside and keep warm.  

To Finish,

Simply add a small spoonful of sauce on top of each eggplant and place in the a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes or until completely hot.  Then take out and place one on each plate.  Spoon over another ladle of sauce over top.  Garnish the eggplant with toasted bread crumbs, esplette pepper, fresh parmesan cheese, basil leaves and chive flowers.  Serve and enjoy!

eggplant parmesan.JPG

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Summer Squash-Zucchini with Koji, Shiso, Chile

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Summer Squash-Zucchini with Koji, Shiso, Chile

Summer squash and zucchini to me is a really hard ingredient to elevate to an extraordinary flavor.  But there are so many varieties in the summer that have different colors and textures you can play with. This recipe is just from having those multiple varieties like 8 ball, yellow zucchini, patty pans and blossoms.  For this recipe I wanted to have a very french approach with subtle heat and asian influence.  The result was really a great dish with unexpected heat and flavor.   This is a fantastic vegetarian dish that would make any hater of squash fall in love immediately.  There is a few steps involved but some of this can easily be made ahead of time, especially the pickled yellow zucchini.  This dish has a little bit of everything with the squash, grilled, raw, pickled, and pureed.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it. 

Summer zucchini and squash

Yellow zucchini puree
4 yellow zucchini diced
1/2 onion sliced
1 tbsp butter
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1 tiny red chile cherry, or fresh cascabelle
1-2 tsp Koji to taste

3 each green and yellow pattypan shaved thin
Koji water

8 ball squash sliced grilled with olive oil
1 Serrano
Salt
4 leaves green shiso chopped fine

Pickled yellow zucchini-apricot add 2 yellow zucchini julienne to recipe (see recipe)

10 each green and yellow patty pan squash cut in half
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp koji
Salt if needed

4oz oyster mushrooms
1 tbsp butter
1/4 tsp salt

Chile flowers
Shiso leaves

For Puree 

In a small pot on medium high heat add oil, butter, onion, diced zucchini, chile and a pinch of salt.  Cover and let it cook for 10 minutes or until the zucchini are completely tender.  Then pour everything into vita mix.  Add a touch of koji and puree until smooth. Adjust seasoning with koji, set aside and keep warm.  

For Grilled Zucchini compote,  Start grill to get hot

Slice 8 ball zucchini 1/4 inch thick.  Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper.  Grill for 2-3 minutes on each side.  Also grill the serrano on all sides.   Take off the grill and cool.   Then diced up the zucchini very fine and place in a bowl.  De-seed the serrano and dice finely and add to the bowl. Add chop shiso and add to the bowl as well.  Mix all the ingredients and adjust seasoning if need be.  Set aside for later.

For the pickled zucchini and apricot (other fruit can easily be substituted or left out)

Simply add julienned yellow zucchini to the recipe link  for the apricot and set aside.

To finish the dish,

In a small pan add butter, oyster mushrooms, and a pinch of salt.  Let it cook for 4 minutes. Meanwhile in another small saute pan add butter, oil, and patty pan squash cut in half.  Cook for 2 minutes and then add koji and cook for another minute, keep warm.  Take the three green and yellow squash and shave thin.  Place in a bowl and lightly toss with koji water.  To plate add puree in a round circle.  Also place another streak of puree to the side of it.   Then add mushrooms and squash on top of the puree.  Add the sliced raw squash on top of the mushrooms and patty pan.  Then add a quenelle of the grilled squash compote to the side.  Add a touch of the pickled zucchini on top of the grilled quenelle.  Finish the dish with chile flowers, and shiso flowers.  Serve and enjoy!

 

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Legume Salad with Green Goddess

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Legume Salad with Green Goddess

Here is a great salad that was a huge crowd pleaser a few weeks ago when I served this recipe for lunch.  It is a simple salad that is grounded in the basis that the majority of the ingredients are legumes.  Legumes are basically vegetables and or fruit that are grown in a pod (beans, peas, peanuts...).  This salad takes a lot of simple ingredients and turns into a fantastic salad that leaves you not only satisfied but also feeling great.  There a few variations that you could easily add to this recipe like cheese or lettuce which I did on another version but not seen in the photo.   I remember everyone cleaning their plates and saying that this was a fantastic dish.  What a great way to either start the meal or if you are a vegetarian as a main course, either way this is one you want to keep in your back pocket for unexpected surprise.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.

Legume salad 

1 cup of beluga lentils cooked with charred onion,1 sprig of rosemary, 2 garlic cloves, salt
1 cup of rice beans cooked with charred onion,1 sprig of rosemary,2 garlic cloves, salt
1 cup of heirloom (black) beans cooked with charred onion, 1 sprig of rosemary, 2 garlic cloves, salt

1 cup of fava beans blanched and peeled
1 cup of snap peas blanch and chopped and hulled
1 cup of green beans blanched and chopped small
1/2 cup roasted peanuts salted
4 tbsp of olive oil
2 cured egg yolks (4 yolks, 1 1/4 cup of sugar and salt)
2 oz of manouri cheese (optional not shown in picture)
1 oz of pea sprouts 

Garlic Goddess dressing 

3 anchovy
1/4 cup roasted garlic with oil
1/4 cup white balsamic (good quality) 
1 bunch of parsley
1 bunch basil
1 cup veganaise or mayo
Salt and pepper to taste

Chive flowers

For cured egg yolks,

In a bowl mix together salt and sugar.  In shallow dish add enough of the salt and sugar mix to coat the bottom.  Then make 4 indents and carefully place the yolks in each indent.  Then cover the yolks with the remaining cure mix.  Place in the refrigerator for 4 days.  Then take out and carefully remove all of the salt and sugar from the yolks.  Heat oven or dehydrator to 150 degrees.  Spray wire rack with non stick spray and place yolks on them.  Place in the oven or dehydrator for 2 hours until the yolk has firm up.  Let it cool, then keep in an air tight container in the refrigerator until needed.  

Cook beans, lentils, and heirlooms filled with water in 3 separate pots with charred onion, rosemary, garlic, and salt.  Cook until tender (lentils aprox 30 min, beans aprox. 1 hr)  Set aside to cool in their cooking water. 

Blanch snap peas and then shock in an ice bath.  Repeat for the green beans and fava beans.  Cut to desired shapes and set aside.  Keep a few snap peas whole and take off one side for garnish.

For the Green Goddess

Place anchovies, roasted garlic, white balsamic, and herbs in a vita mix.  Puree until smooth.  Then fold puree into veganaise or mayo.  Season and set aside.  

To finish the dish,

Strain out the beans, keep the water for another purpose.  Place 1 cup of each rice bean, heirloom, lentil, fava, green bean, pea, snap peas in a mixing bowl.  Add olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Place a generous spoonful of green goddess on the plate.  Then add all the legumes to the plate.  Add peanuts to each plate.  Grate cured egg yolk on top.  Add (cheese if desired, not shown) pea sprouts, 1 pea pod, and chive flowers.  Serve and enjoy! 

 

 

 

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"Succotash"Corn, Black Truffle, Lima Beans.

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"Succotash"Corn, Black Truffle, Lima Beans.

Here is my version of a ramped up succotash.  A typical southern dish consisting of summer vegetables including corn and lima beans.  I added a few things like baby corn, black truffle, corn puree and huacatay (a peruvian herb).  Here is a dish that Eloise absolutely loved.  She was enamored with all the flavors that she wasn't expecting.  This recipe is again just another dish celebrating the bounty of the summer produce you can find at your local farmers market.  You don't have to do a ton of work for it either. Just have some great ingredients and enhance them a bit.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.

 

Corn Puree

3 cups of corn juice

1 1/2 tbsp of truffle oil

Salt 

 

8 baby corn grilled in husk until tender and sliced 1 inch thick

8 small onions (boiler, or cippolini) roasted with olive oil

1 cup of heirloom baby tomatoes 

1 cup of fresh lima beans blanched

1 cup of fresh cranberry beans cooked through (see recipe fresh beans)

1 tbsp of olive oil 

1 tbsp of butter

 

Huacatay Sauce (recipe here ) or this slight variation

2 cups of fresh huacatay

1 garlic clove

3 jalapenos

1 1/4 cup of olive oil

salt to taste

1 cup of veganaise (or mayo)

 

4 tbsp of snipped chives and flowers

1 black truffle 

 

For the corn puree,

simply place corn juice and a pinch of salt in a sauce pot.  Place the pot on medium heat and whisk often to prevent scorching.  The corn juice will thicken up from the natural starch and sugars, and it will become thick.  Adjust seasoning with salt and truffle oil and set aside and keep warm.

For the Huacatay Sauce,

Place garlic, huacatay, jalapenos, and 1/2 of oil into a blender.  Turn on and puree until smooth and drizzle in the remaining oil.  Season with salt.  Then take a 1/2 cup of the huacatay puree and mix together with the veganaise.  Season with salt and place in a squirt bottle.  Set aside for later.  

To Finish,

In a saute pan on medium high heat add butter, oil, lima beans, cranberry beans, onions, and baby corn.   Saute for 3 minutes until hot.  Season with salt and pepper.  Then season tomatoes with salt and a touch of olive oil.  Place a few spoonfuls of the corn puree on the plate.  Then add the vegetables on top and place tomatoes on as well.  Place a few dollops of the huacatay sauce around the vegetables.  Finish with truffle slices, chives, and blossoms.  Serve and enjoy!

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Hay smoked Porcini, Comte, Jujube Tea

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Hay smoked Porcini, Comte, Jujube Tea

Trying to get back into the blog.  I have been cooking a lot of good dishes I think recently but haven't wanted to put the time into sitting down and writing the recipe.  Porcini's (Ceps) are prevalent come spring time, a very sought after ingredient and expensive.  In Italy they are every where to be found in the fall from what I remember.  A very deep and rich tasting mushroom that needs to be bathed in butter.  I had bought a bunch of hay from a local animal feed shop in Malibu and decided to smoke the porcini's first lightly and then finish them with some butter in pan.  I made a light foam from comte cheese and finished the dish off with jujube tea.  This one local farmer has the sweetest dried jujube's and he suggested that I make tea with them.  It is a medicinal ingredient in Asia.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.

1 lb of porcini mushrooms
8 oz of beech mushroom
2 small onions sliced thin
4 tbsp of butter
2 tbsp of olive oil
1 cup of blanched fava beans
3 tbsp of sniped chives
Splash of sherry vinegar 

14 jujube dried cut in half
6 cups water
2 bay leafs
1 garlic clove 

Comte bechemel
2 tbsp of butter
2 tbsp flour
4 cups of milk warm
4 oz of shredded Comte
2 oz Parmesan
Salt and pepper to taste 

Garlic flowers to garnish

For the porcini's,

Cut the porcini's in half and score.  Then place them on a tray that fit's into your stove top smoker.  Grab a hand full of hay (alfalfa, timothy hay or orchard) or a combination any of them and place them in the bottom of a stove top smoker.  Turn the heat on until the hay starts to smoke.  Then put the rack on top and tray with the porcini's.  Let it cook gently for 5 minutes. Then turn off the heat and allow to sit in the smoker for another 30 minutes.  Meanwhile.

For the Comte Bechemel 

In a medium sauce pot on medium heat melt your butter in the pan and then add the flour to make a roux once all the butter has completely melted.  Stir with a whisk for 1 minute.  Then add your warm milk stirring constantly.  Bring the milk to a boil and turn down to a simmer.  Cook for 5-10 minutes.  The milk should thicken.  Once the milk has been thickened to a heavy sauce consistency add both cheeses stirring with the whisk until completely melted.  Season with salt and pepper.  Pour into a isi canister half way and charge with two N2O cartridges shaking for at least a minute for each cartridge so the air gets distributed evenly .  Place your canister in a pot with hot water to keep the foam warm.  

For the Jujube Tea,

Cut the dried jujube's in half and remove the seeds.  Then place all the ingredients in a pot and bring to boil.  Turn down to a very low simmer and let it cook for about 30-45 minutes or until the water has a sweet aroma and flavor.  Set aside and keep warm.

To finish the dish,

In a large saute pan add olive oil and 1 tbsp of butter along with porcini's.  Cook the porcini's for 4 minutes and then add onions, beech mushrooms, and another tbsp of butter.  Let that cook for 5 minutes until the mushroom and onions start to caramelize.  Then add 4 oz of the jujube tea to the pan along with a splash of vinegar.  Let it cook for another 3-4 minutes until there is just a little broth left in the pan.  Then finish with the rest of the butter, fava beans, salt, pepper, chives, and maybe another splash of vinegar.  Then add a few spoonfuls of the ragu to a serving bowl.  Then ladle another 2 oz of tea on top of the ragu.  Then take your canister with your comte bechemel and foam cheese foam on top of it all.  Finish with chives and garlic flowers.  Serve and enjoy!

 

 

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Vegetable Pot Au Feu

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Vegetable Pot Au Feu

Pot au Feu, a basic one pot stew in classic french, in this case we went with all vegetables. Here is a simple vegetarian dish that Eloise absolutely loved.   She asked for it two nights in a row because it was so good.  Basically this is a bowl of mixed vegetables, spring in this case, with a vegetable broth, truffle butter, and basil.  Simple, clean, and delicious.  The concept is easy, take all the vegetables that spring gives you, prepare them in different ways.  Add a few other ingredients to make a vegetarian bowl that would make any carnivore happy.  Here is the recipe I hope you enjoy it.

2 cups of fresh english peas blanched

1 lb of small carrots (baby) char-grilled (season with olive oil salt and pepper)

8 oz of trumpet royal mushrooms cut in half

8 oz of sugar snap peas cleaned and blanched

8 oz of patty pan yellow squash blanched

1 bunch of asparagus grilled (season with olive oil salt and pepper)

1 lb fingerling potatoes roasted and sliced (purple, (season with olive oil salt, pepper,thyme, lemon)

3 red radish sliced thin

1 lb of miners lettuce

3 tbsp Olive oil and 1 minced garlic clove

1 tbsp of truffle butter

 

Vegetable stock (here)

4 oz Truffle butter (1 lb of butter, 2 oz of fresh truffles, 1 tbsp of truffle oil, salt )

1 tsp of lecithin

Salt to taste

 

Basil Oil

1 lb of basil    (blanched)

2 cups of vegetable oil

salt 

 

2 oz of pea sprouts to garnish

 

For the basil oil,

Simply blanch the basil in boiling salted water for 15 seconds and then shock in an ice bath.  Squeeze dry the basil leaves and then place in a vita mix with the oil.  Puree for 30 seconds to a minute.  Then strain through a chinois ( if you want no sediment in the oil at all use a cheese cloth as well) Season with salt and place in a squeeze bottle.

For the Vegetable froth

Add 3 cups of vegetable broth to a pot and warm it through.  Then add the butter and lecithin using a hand blender.  Once thoroughly mixed, adjust the seasoning.  Then test the froth or foam by tilting the pot and just frothing the top of the broth so that it incorporates air until foam starts to multiply.  If you aren't happy with the foam you can add a little more fat (truffle butter) to the broth to help the consistency.  

To finish

In a medium hot saute pan add 2 tbsp of olive oil and trumpet royal mushrooms.  Cook for 4-5 minutes.  Then add the rest of the vegetables except the radish and miners into the pan with 4 oz of vegetable broth.  Cook for 1 1/2 minutes just to heat up the vegetables (all of them are already cooked).  Finish with a little truffle butter, salt and pepper.  In a separate pan add the remaining oil with miners  lettuce and cook for 1 minute.  Season with salt.  Then place the vegetables into a bowl arranging them around.  Should look something like this

Then take your froth and froth again to refresh the foam.  Spoon over the vegetables some of the broth and foam.  Finish with Basil oil, and pea sprouts.  Serve and enjoy!

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Vegetarian Pate En-Croute

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Vegetarian Pate En-Croute

Finally getting back into the recipes.  I have been slacking lately with the addition of my son and traveling, I've got about 11 recipes I need to catch up on.  Here is a classic french preparation normally done with an array of meats.  Since Eloise and Jp are really going more vegetarian in the last year or so, I find myself trying different outlets for vegetables.  Here is a great example of taking some ordinary vegetables and trying to make it extraordinary. I had broccoli greens, celery root,  butternut squash, and leeks.  It was all layered with truffle butter and finish with a nasturtium cream.  Pretty straight forward with the recipe.  Basically a bunch of vegetables are cooked in a terrine or loaf pan, wrapped in pastry and baked until done.  Served warm or cold.  Here is the recipe, I hope you enjoy

1 lb bread flour

2 tsp of baking powder

1/2 oz of salt

1 tsp of sugar

4 oz of cold butter

1 egg

2 tsp of cider vinegar

8 oz of milk

 

Vegetables

1 large butternut squash sliced thin (1/16 thick)

2 bunches of broccoli greens blanched

3 large stalks of leeks cut in half, washed, and blanched for 30 seconds

1 large celery root sliced thin (1/16 thick)

 

2 oz of nasturtium pedals blanched  

1 cup of spinach leaves blanched

10 oz creme fraiche 

Salt to taste

 

4 tbsp of truffle butter (1 lb of butter, 2 oz of fresh truffles, 1 tbsp of truffle oil, salt )

Nasturtium pedals and flowers to garnish 

 

For the Pate En-croute dough

Mix all of the dry ingredients together in a bowl.  The add the butter and mix well using a fork or pastry cutter until the mixture is crumbly .  Finally add the mix and knead until a smooth dough is formed but not sticky ( about a minute or two)  Then place in the refrigerator for at least an hour.  Then take out of the refrigerator and roll the dough out until it between and 1/8 and 1/16 inch thick. Use extra flour if need be if the dough is sticking to your surface.  

Take your terrine pan or loaf pan and measure the size.  You want to leave about an 1 inch to 1 1/2 overhang of the dough in the pan that way you can cover the en-croute once it is filled.  Line your terrine with the dough.

Vegetables, (note, You might need to trim the edges of the butternut and celery root so they fit nicely into the terrine mold)

Then take your butternut squash a place a layer of on the bottom of the pate in the terrine mold.  Season with salt and pepper and place a tsp of truffle butter on top.  Then add the celery root and repeat the same steps. Then the blanched broccoli leaves, and then the leeks.  Start back at the beginning with the butternut squash and keep repeating all these steps until you filled the terrine mold about a 1/2 inch above the top lip of the terrine.  Then fold the ends over of the dough on top of the vegetables, and then the sides of the dough on top to seal up the terrine. Take tiny cookie cutter and cut a hole in the top of the dough for steam to escape. Brush the dough with egg and place in a preheated 425 degree oven.  Bake for 15 minutes and then turn down to 350 and cook for another 45-50 minutes.  Take out and let it cool to room temperature 

Nasturtium Cream,

Simply add blanched nasturtium and spinach leaves along with 4 oz of creme fraiche into a blender and puree until smooth and bright green, strain.  Whip the remaining creme fraiche until medium peaks and then strain in the puree.  Season with salt and set aside.

To finish 

Simply slice the pate loaf and place on a plate. Drizzle with a little olive oil and sea salt.  Add a little nasturtium creme on the side.  Garnish with a little flower and pedal.  Serve and enjoy!

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Beet Tart with Ricotta, Lemon, and Dill

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Beet Tart with Ricotta, Lemon, and Dill

Simple recipe that was huge hit with the family a few weeks back.  I went to the farmers market and they were beets, beets and more beets.  I ended up buying some red ones, yellow ones, and white ones.  You can pick whatever method for cooking the beets that you wood like.  Roast them, Salt bake, boil, steam etc....  I went with roasted.  Combine that with a tart dough, fresh ricotta, add dill and lemon and you have yourself an easy but delicious recipe.  Here it is, I hope you enjoy it.

Tart Crust (Pate Brisee)

2 sticks of good butter

2 cups of flour plus 3 tbsp.

1/4 cup of water (ice cold)

1 tsp of kosher salt

 

1 bunch (4) of each red, yellow, and white beets roasted and peeled

1 lb of fresh ricotta (here)

1 tbsp of dill

1 tsp of lemon zest

Olive oil, Salt and pepper

 

For the tart dough

Using the food processor again add 3 cups of flour to the bowl along with the salt.  Pulse a few times to combine well.  Then turn the processor on and begin to add all the butter a tbsp. at a time.  Once the butter has been combined.  Drizzle in the cold water.  Finish with a few tbsp. of flour if needed.  Normally now you put the crust into the refrigerator to let the dough come together as it gets cold.  I don't like when my dough is so cold I can't roll it and usually I am in a rush.  If you can put the dough in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes it will really help; if not simply take the dough and put a light dusting of flour onto the parchment paper and place the dough on top.  Then dust flour on the top of the dough and put a second piece of parchment paper on top of the dough. With a rolling pin roll out your dough to a thin crust consistency.  Take your tart mold and carefully place your tart dough inside the mold and prick dough all over with a fork.  Using a rolling pin roll the pin over the mold to trim off any excess dough.  Place parchment paper and pie weights or dried beans.  Place in a 375 oven for 20-25 or until golden brown.  Take out and let it cool completely.

Once cooled spread the ricotta all over the bottom of the tart.  Then shave a little lemon zest evenly over the ricotta.  Then slice the beets and place in the tart on top of the ricotta ( you can use a cookie cutter to make them all the same size if you want) Alternate the beets and then season with olive oil, and salt.  Finish with fresh dill.  Slice and enjoy!

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