Traditional recipes

Yams with Crispy Skins and Brown-Butter Vinaigrette

Yams with Crispy Skins and Brown-Butter Vinaigrette

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  • 8 slender medium garnet yams or other yams (red-skinned sweet potatoes; about 5 pounds total), rinsed, dried
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt plus additional for seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • Vegetable oil (for frying)

Recipe Preparation

  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Pierce each yam in several places with fork. Place directly on oven rack and roast until just tender, 40 to 50 minutes, depending on size of yams.

  • Transfer roasted yams to work surface. Using scissors, cut off ends of each yam, then cut skin on 1 long side and peel off in 1 piece, being careful not to break warm yams. Let yams cool to room temperature. Tear or cut skins into long ribbons, about 1 inch wide.

  • Cut yams crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick rounds. Arrange rounds, slightly overlapping, in 13x9x2-inch glass baking dish or other ovenproof dish. Cover yams with aluminum foil to keep moist. DO AHEAD Yams can be made up to 3 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature. Rewarm yams in 350°F oven 15 to 20 minutes before serving.

  • Melt butter in large skillet over medium heat. Cook until butter browns (milk solids will turn deep golden brown), stirring occasionally, 8 to 10 minutes. Carefully pour butter, including all brown milk solids, into small bowl.

  • Blend shallot, garlic, and 1 teaspoon coarse salt in processor until smooth, occasionally scraping down sides of bowl. Add Dijon mustard, then red wine vinegar. With motor running, gradually drizzle in butter (including browned milk solids). Season vinaigrette to taste with pepper and additional salt, if desired. DO AHEAD Vinaigrette can be made 1 hour ahead. Blend again 5 seconds before using.

  • Pour enough vegetable oil into large deep skillet to reach depth of 1 inch. Attach deep-fry thermometer to side of skillet and heat oil to 350°F. Add yam skins in batches (oil will bubble up) and fry until skins are crisp and brown, stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes. Using slotted spoon, carefully transfer yam skins to paper towels to drain. Sprinkle skins with coarse salt and pepper.

  • Spoon vinaigrette over potatoes. Scatter crisp skins over and serve.

Recipe by Gabrielle Hamilton,

Nutritional Content

One serving contains the following: Calories (kcal) 367.8 %Calories from Fat 65.6 Fat (g) 26.9 Saturated Fat (g) 14.4 Cholesterol (mg) 60.0 Carbohydrates (g) 29.1 Dietary Fiber (g) 4.6 Total Sugars (g) 9.0 Net Carbs (g) 24.6 Protein (g) 2.9Reviews Section

Thanksgiving at Virtue Farm

"My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving," says Missy Corey, our farm & hospitality director. She's certainly a master of country and French-inspired food, and being an expert on cooking with and to pair for cider, we wanted to share her ideal Thanksgiving meal and some recipes.

"The trick for making Thanksgiving manageable for a smaller number of people is to rethink the bird. So for this dinner, I am focusing on duck. It's delicious, easy to get right, and pairs beautifully with our Michigan Harvest semi-dry cider.

Spinach Salad with Mustard & Cider Vinaigrette

Duck with Apples and Cider

I am going to recommend that you order ahead from a quality independent butcher. And since you're there, they'll happily cut the duck in half for you. It's easy for them, and you won't have to wrangle what can be a tricky extra step. From there, roasting duck is as simple as an overnight dry brine of one part each salt and sugar, then garlic, juniper, black pepper, and rosemary to taste. Place in a deep roasting pan with a large dollop of lard and roast in a low oven (300˚F) until legs are loosened and skin is crispy, making sure to baste the duck with that lard every so often to create a crispy crust.

The "gravy" is inspired by a recipe from the venerable Anne Willan. It's really just a pan sauce with with Calvados (this time I'm using cider instead), finished with crème fraîche instead of cream. About 15 minutes before the duck is done, I deglaze the pan with cider — such as Michigan Harvest — then add apples and the duck back back into the oven. When the duck is done, I move it to a plate and finish the sauce with crème fraîche for an instant (and delicious) gravy.

Swiss Chard Gratin

This recipe is a French classic. Think of it as an alternative to that crazy green bean casserole that has become such a Thanksgiving icon. This is better, it's actually seasonal, and both times I have made it, it has turned out to be everyone's favorite side.

5 lb. Swiss chard, with stems
3 medium onions
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
4 cups milk
1 whole nutmeg, grated to taste
2 packed cups grated Gruyère cheese

Wash Swiss chard and pull the greens from the stalk, reserving all the stalks. Quickly blanche greens in salted boiling water, until they are just tender, then immediately shock in a bowl of ice water. When fully chilled, wring out all excess water from greens and roughly chop then set in a mixing bowl.

Take remaining stalks and slice on a bias, to get lively diamonds. Cut the white onions in a large dice, the same size as the chard stalks. Sauté these together on low with a pat of butter until soft and sweet. Do not allow to brown. When softened, allow to cool slightly and then add to the bowl with the greens.

The next step is to make a béchamel sauce. In a separate pot, melt butter, when melted add flour and stir until the two come together into a thick roux. Allow to color but only slightly. The roux should remain golden, but you do want to cook the rawness out of the flour. Add milk and whisk thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper, and a handful of the Gruyère and grate the nutmeg into the béchamel. When thickened and properly seasoned, take 1-2 cups of the béchamel and mix it into the greens mixture. Taste, season, this should look and feel like creamed spinach.

Place in a baking dish, top with a thin layer of béchamel and the remainder of the Gruyère.

Bake in a 350˚F oven for 35-40 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly. Allow to cool slightly before serving. Pairs well with Percheron.

Sweet Potato with Brown Butter Vinaigrette

This recipe is inspired by Gabrielle Hamilton of Prune. We held a dinner celebrating a few dishes form the Prune cookbook a few years back. One of the line cooks at the restaurant screwed up the recipe by overcooking the yams, which in my opinion makes the dish even better. Hamilton calls for garnet yams, which are preferable, but to be honest the recipe is so good you can substitute good quality farm sweet potatoes as well.

Try it her way, or ours, I like the silkiness of the dish our way and the brown butter vinaigrette makes this dish highly addictive. Hamilton also calls to fry the skins, however in my experience, not many home cooks own a deep fryer and the dish is so luscious as it is, I choose to bake the skins to crips them instead.
Pair with Michigan Harvest, serves 8-10.

Roast 1 lb. of garnet yams or sweet potatoes per person. (Approximately 10 lb.)
Skin-on, do not pierce. In a hot 400˚F oven until VERY soft.

Brown Butter Vinaigrette:
2 lb. unsalted butter
2ea clove
2ea shallot
4 T dijon
1 T salt
1/4 cup red wine

Meanwhile, prepare the brown butter vinaigrette, it is important that the vinaigrette and sweet potatoes be mixed together while the potatoes are still warm.

To prepare the vinaigrette, melt the butter in a stainless steel pan on medium until it begins to bubble. Continue to allow the butter to brown, stirring constantly so that all of the milk solids brown evenly. You want to push the limit a little and allow the butter to become nutty and brown. However do not burn! If the butter gets too dark it's best to start over.

Allow butter to come back to room temp. Place all other ingredients in a high-speed blender and mix until it becomes a paste. Drizzle in butter, including all browned bits.
Add as much vinaigrette to the hot flesh of the sweet potatoes as your heart will allow (I use the entire amount).

Take the leftover skins from the yams or sweet potatoes and drizzle with olive oil, and add salt and pepper. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment and bake until crispy. This will take about 15-20 minutes at 350˚F.

Grilled Caponata – A New Twist with Deep Flavor!

From the Mediterranean area – Caponata is a Sicilian eggplant relish or eggplant salad typically served room temperature. I’m seriously grilling lately – so I have turned one of my favorite dishes into a grilled spectacular Italian dish. Caponata is a Sicilian eggplant relish or eggplant salad typically served room temperature. This vegetarian feast has [&hellip]

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Thanksgiving is over - moving on to Christmas

No matter how much I get done on Wednesday there always seems to be a full day of cooking on Thanksgiving Thursday. The final menu turned out to be a great success and way more food than was necessary for five people. There were some keeper dishes and some that needed reworking. Here's the final menu that could easily feed 6 to 8.

1. One 18.5 pound turkey, stuffed. This took about 5 hours to cook (in the oven) and provided enough left overs for sandwiches, Turkey Enchiladas and Turkey Tetrazzini.
2. Sausage stuffing with pecans and water chestnuts. We use two bags of Pepperidge Farm stuffing (any flavor) and doctor it up. This makes enough for stuffing the bird and a pan full to bake in the oven.
3. Instant Pistachio Salad - Kaitlyn's request.
4. Mashed potatoes and gravy.
5. Corn and Wild Rice Pudding. We've had this dish a couple of times now. We all like it and it works well with the rest of the menu.
6. Gourmet Sweet Potato Classic. If you have to have sweet potatoes, this is a good way to serve them.
7. Green Beans with Mushrooms and Shallots. I couldn't find sherry vinegar or pancetta so I just cooked a couple pieces of bacon, sauteed the mushrooms and shallots in the bacon fat then threw in the green beans at the last. These were good! Garlic-Roasted Green Beans and Shallots with Hazelnuts also sounds good although I may go back to the standard Green Bean Casserole (this recipe uses cream of chicken and mushroom soup instead of just plain cream of mushroom soup).I just miss it when it's not around.
8. Creamy Baked Leeks. I didn't like this dish as much. The leeks were tough so maybe they weren't cooked long enough. I like leeks but haven't cooked with them very much. Still searching for that perfect creamed onion replacement!
9. Cranberry relish. Add 1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of water to fresh cranberries in a sauce pan and cook them until they pop.

Store-bought hot rolls and apple pie and pumpkin pie for dessert rounded out a very satisfying, traditional meal fit for a crowd!

Bonus: Make Riced Sweet Potato

Are you already bored with sweet potato noodles? Good news! Sweet potatoes make the BEST vegetable rice!

To make sweet potatoes into rice, watch this how-to video. It’s quick and easy after you’ve spiralized the potato.

Then, you can turn riced sweet potato into curry, soups, stews, chilis, or just sauté it with some olive oil in a skillet and make a grain-free “grain” bowl. It takes about 5-7 minutes to cook sweet potato rice. To speed up the cooking process, add some moisture. 1/2 cup of veggie or chicken broth will help soften up the “rice” in no time and add extra flavor.

Best Sweet Potato Rice Recipes

And if you want to see a sweet potato being spiralized, watch below:

New What I Ate Today video

Watch my latest “What I Ate Video” on our YouTube channel (and always subscribe!)

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This cookie is a riff on our very popular Cadbury Egg Cookies it’s been slightly modified to make one single GIANT cookie! This is an amazingly soft, chewy chocolate cookie that is studded with crunchy bits of everyone’s favorite eggs. If it’s not Cadbury-Egg-Season, feel free to sub in another add-in. We love this one… Read Post

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From Deep Run Roots: Stories and Recipes from My Corner of the South Deep Run Roots by Vivian Howard

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  • Categories: Egg dishes Breakfast / brunch American South Vegetarian
  • Ingredients: eggs hot sauce broccoli sprouts

58 Easy Potato Recipes For Weeknight Dinners, Thanksgiving and More

Whether fried, mashed, or boiled, these potato dishes are our favorite flavor-packed go-tos.

Whether they're the star of your Thanksgiving side dishes, or a go-to on an average Tuesday night, potatoes are the most versatile of starches. And these super easy, flavor-packed easy potato recipes will cover your bases no matter the occasion!

So, what can be made from potatoes? There are plenty of types of potato dishes, especially when you consider all of the different types of potatoes available at the store. We suggest keeping a variety of potatoes on hand, like russets, fingerlings and Yukon gold. Each type has a different starch content, and skins vary drastically, from waxy to tender, making some better for different preparations than others. The best potatoes for mashed potatoes, for example, are Yukon golds. They can easily be transformed into an ultra-creamy potato dish, like creamy garlic potatoes. Yukon golds are also great for any fried potato recipes (looking at you, French fries!), whereas Russets are the best to get the ultimate crispy roast potatoes because of their fluffy, dry interiors.

Whether you&rsquore cooking for hours to perfect the best-ever mashed potato recipes for your Thanksgiving dinner, or you&rsquore working on the fly to get an easy weeknight dinner on the table in 20 minutes, spuds will help you get there. In all forms, from blended to roasted, fried potato recipes to casseroles, gratin to hasselback, there's no dish out there that these potato recipes don't enhance.

This week’s local produce and featured farms:

Chicken Sweet Potato Curry

2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 tablespoon ground paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 yellow onions, finely diced
1/4 cup finely chopped green garlic
1 1/2 teaspoons Madras curry powder
1 pound Japanese sweet potatoes, peeled, and cut into 1-inch chunks
1 (13-ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon Sriracha
Cooked rice or noodles, for serving
1/2 cup chopped cilantro or Italian parsley for garnish
1 lime or lemon, cut into wedges, for serving

1. Cut the chicken into 1-inch pieces, transfer to a bowl. Add the paprika, turmeric and salt, mix well. Let the chicken marinate at room temperature while you prepare the other ingredients or cover and refrigerate overnight.
2. In a Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-high. Stir in the onions, lower the heat to medium-low and cook gently, stirring often, until tender. Add the garlic and curry powder and cook for 1 minute.
3. Add the chicken and saute for 2 minutes. Add in the potatoes, and coconut milk. Bring to a simmer. Lower the heat, add the fish sauce and broth stirring up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan.
4. Simmer, covered for 30 to 45 minutes until the chicken and the potatoes are tender.
5. Stir in the Sriracha, taste for seasoning and adjust. Serve over rice or noodles, and garnish with cilantro and lemon or lime wedges.

Miso Maple Turnips

1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 to 2 tablespoons white miso
1 tablespoon finely chopped green garlic
One bunch turnips, tops removed, scrubbed, and cut into wedges

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, silicone, or parchment.
2. In a bowl, mix the butter, oil, maple syrup, miso and green garlic.
3. Add the turnips and toss to coat.
4. Spread the turnips onto the baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes, turning once or twice during the baking process. The edges should be crispy, and the interior should be creamy. Serve warm.

Save the Greens

Serves 4:
Turnip greens give you an extra serving of healthy greens, remove the tough stems, and saute. If you don’t use the sautéed greens right away, they freeze beautifully, and can be added to soups, and sautés. They are delicious stirred into mashed potatoes and garnished with a bit of Parmigiano or your favorite cheese.

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves sliced
Pinch red pepper flakes
1 bunch turnip greens, tough stems removed and cut into 1/2-inch ribbons
2 to 4 tablespoons water or broth
Salt and pepper
1. In a large skillet heat the oil, saute the garlic and pepper for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the greens, and saute to 3 to 4 minutes until wilted.
2. If the skillet is dry add a bit of water or broth, to help wilt the greens.
3. Season the greens with salt and pepper if needed and serve warm. They are a terrific bed for grilled poultry or meats.

Green Garlic Marinated Grilled Salmon

Serves 6:
This marinade also works well for poultry, pork, and beef.

1/2 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons finely chopped green garlic
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
3 tablespoons honey
3 drops hot sauce (Tabasco or Franks, no Cholula)
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons sesame oil
2 1/2 pounds salmon filets

1. In a bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, garlic, vinegar, honey, hot sauce, vegetable oil, and sesame oil.
2. Arrange the salmon in a 13-by-9-inch baking dish and pour the marinade over the salmon, turning the salmon to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or up to 8 hours.
3. Preheat the grill, or a grill pan, remove the salmon from the marinade, and pour the marinade into a saucepan and bring to a boil, simmer for 10 minutes.
4. Grill the salmon for 3 minutes per side, until it registers 155 on an instant read meat thermometer. Remove from the grill, allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving. Serve the salmon with the warmed marinade on the side.

Layered Vegetable Salad with Green Garlic Dressing

One Salanova, washed and spun dry
3 to 4 Persian cucumbers, scrubbed, ends trimmed, and thinly sliced into rounds
1 bunch baby carrots, scrubbed, and thinly sliced
1-2 Gold bar squash, scrubbed, ends trimmed, and thinly sliced into rounds
1 basket cherry tomatoes, washed, stemmed, and cut into quarters
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream or Greek style yogurt
Grated zest of 1 lemon
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup finely chopped green garlic
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshy ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

1. In a salad bowl, layer the lettuce, cucumbers, carrots, squash, and cherry tomatoes.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, lemon zest, lemon juice, green garlic, salt, and pepper.
3. Spread the dressing over the salad and garnish with the cheese, cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.

Orange Glazed Chicken

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
6 chicken breast halves 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 medium shallot minced
1 cup orange juice
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

1. In a shallow wide dish, combine the flour, salt, and pepper. Dip the chicken breasts into the flour, dusting off any excess.
2. In a large skillet, heat the oil and butter, add the chicken and brown on each side, about 3 minutes. Remove the chicken from the skillet to a plate, and cover to keep warm. Add the shallot, and saute for 2 minutes, until softened. Add the remaining ingredients to the skillet and stir up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan, reducing the sauce a bit.
3. Add the chicken back to the pan and turn in the sauce. Simmer another 5 minutes until the chicken is cooked through (it will read 165 degrees on a meat thermometer) Serve the chicken with some of the warmed sauce.

Chocolate Orange Marble Bundt Cake

2 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or paste
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
5 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and coat the inside of a 10-inch Bundt or tube pan with non-stick cooking spray.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until they are light and fluffy. Add the vanilla, and zest.
3. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition, scraping down the sides of the bowl.
4. Mix the sour cream and juice together, add with the flour, baking soda and salt, and beat until the mixture comes together and is smooth.
5. Remove 1 1/2 cups of the batter and whisk in the cocoa powder.
6. Pour the orange batter into the into the prepared pan.
7. Dollop the cocoa batter onto the orange batter, using an off-set spatula marble the cocoa batter through the cake.
8. Bake for 1 hour or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.
9. Transfer the cake pan to a rack and allow to cool for EXACTLY 10 minutes. Allow to cool.
10. Pour the lemony icing over the cake when the cake is cooled.
11. The cake keeps at room temperature for up to 5 days, freezes for about 2 months.

Mediterranean Pasta Salad

1 pound shaped pasta like farfalle, penne, shells, or rigatoni, cooked 3 minutes short of al dente
2 cups finely diced Persian cucumber
2 cups quartered cherry tomatoes
1 bunch arugula, washed, and spun dry
1/2 cup pitted, chopped Kalamata olives
1/2 cup crumbled Feta cheese
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar
3 tablespoons finely chopped green garlic
2 tablespoons dillweed
2 teaspoons dried oregano
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. In a large salad bowl, combine the cooled, cooked pasta with the cucumber, cherry tomatoes, arugula, Kalamata olives, Feta and chopped onion.
2. In a bowl, whisk together the oils, vinegar, sugar, garlic, dill, and oregano. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Pour 1/2 of the dressing over the salad and toss to coat. Refrigerate the salad and remaining dressing for at least 4 hours. Re-toss with more dressing just before serving.

Pizza Primavera

For the Pizza Dough:
Makes two 14-inch pizzas (make one and freeze the other)
1 teaspoon instant yeast
2 teaspoons sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
3 cups 00 flour*
3/4 cup lukewarm water
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1. Stir together all the ingredients, turn out onto a floured board, knead for 5 minutes, divide the dough in half, cover with lightly greased plastic wrap, and let rest and relax for 15 minutes before tossing.

For the Pizza and Assembly:
1/2 cup plain tomato sauce
1 cup arugula, washed, and spun dry
1/2 cup cherry, grape, or pear tomatoes, cut in half or quarters
1 cup boccacini (tiny fresh mozzarella balls) or one ball fresh mozzarella, cut into small dice
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper

2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and preheat a pizza stone, if you have it. Otherwise, roll out the pizza dough into a 14-inch circle, and place on an oiled sheet pan. Spread a thin layer of the tomato sauce onto the pizza, and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the bottom of the crust is crispy.
3. While the crust is baking, in a mixing bowl, toss together the arugula, tomatoes, boccacini, olive oil, vinegar, and season with salt and pepper. When the pizza crust comes out of the oven, immediately top it with the salad, and serve.

Plain Tomato Sauce:
Makes about 2 cups
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced (or 2 tablespoons green garlic, minced)
Pinch red pepper flakes
One 14.5-ounce can crushed tomatoes
Salt and pepper
1. In a saucepan, heat the oil over medium high heat, add the garlic and red pepper, and swirl in the pan.
2. Add the tomatoes, season with salt and pepper, and simmer for 20 minutes, until the sauce is thickened. Cool the sauce before spreading on the pizza crust.
3. Any leftover sauce can be refrigerated for up to 4 days, or frozen for up to 3 months.

Gold Bar Squash Cornbread Panzanella

For the Vinaigrette:
1/2 cup canola oil
1/3 cup white balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons minced red onion or shallot
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. In a small bowl, whisk together the ingredients, and season with salt and pepper. The dressing can be refrigerated for up to 1 week.

For the Salad:
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups gold bar squash, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
Salt and pepper
15 ounces store-bought cornbread, cubed and toasted (do not use sweet cornbread)
1 cup quartered cherry tomatoes
1 bunch arugula, washed and spun dry
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
4 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, chopped

2. In a skillet, heat the oil, and saute the squash, seasoning with salt and pepper, until crisp/tender. Remove from the skillet to a salad bowl.
3. Add the cornbread, cherry tomatoes, arugula, red onion, and mozzarella.
4. Toss with the vinaigrette and allow to mellow at room temperature for about 1 hour before serving.

Gold Bar Squash Bundt Cake

Makes one 9-inch bundt:

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup canola oil
2 cups grated yellow squash
1 tablespoon orange zest
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Coat a 10-cup Bundt pan with non-stick cooking spray.
2. Stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl.
3. Place eggs, sugar, and oil in bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.
4. Beat on medium-high speed until light and airy, about 3 minutes, stopping to scrape down sides as needed.
5. Stir in squash, zest, and juice. Gradually add flour mixture, beating on low speed until just combined, about 45 seconds. Pour batter into prepared pan.
6. Bake in preheated oven until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, 50 to 55 minutes. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Invert onto a wire rack cool 1 hour.

Orange-Buttermilk Glaze:
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons whole buttermilk
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
1 tablespoon orange juice

1. Whisk together all ingredients in a bowl until smooth. Drizzle over cooled cake.

Carcioffi Alla Romana

4 artichokes
1/3 cup lemon juice
¼ cup white wine
3 cloves garlic
¼ cup loosely-packed fresh parsley leaves, chopped
¼ cup loosely-packed fresh mint leaves, chopped
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
Fine sea salt, to taste
Freshly-ground black pepper, to taste

1. Using a serrated knife, cut off top of artichoke and bottom-most part of stem.
2. Using a paring knife or sharp vegetable peeler, trim away the tough outer leaves to expose the tender inner leaves and heart. Trim away fibrous outer layer around stem to expose tender inner core (if stem breaks off, that’s okay just save it and cook it alongside the hearts). Using a spoon, scrape out the inedible, hairy choke in the center of each heart. Transfer cleaned artichokes to bowl of lemon water as you work, covering them with a clean kitchen towel to keep them completely submerged.
3. Mince the garlic, parsley, and mint together. Mix in a small bowl with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Stuff the artichokes with the garlic mixture.
4. Place the remaining three tablespoons of olive oil in the bottom of a tall, narrow pot. Arrange the artichokes side by side in the pot with their stems facing up. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, uncovered, over medium heat for 5 minutes.
5. Pour in the wine and enough water to reach 2 inches up the side of the pot. Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid, and simmer over medium heat, lowering the flame if the liquid begins to boil, until the artichokes are extremely tender and easily pierced with a fork, about 45 minutes.
6. Check occasionally, and if the pot seems very dry, add water in small amounts.
7. When the artichokes are tender, remove the lid, turn the heat up to high, and boil until most of the liquid has evaporated and just the oil remains in the pot. Remove the artichokes with a slotted spoon, and set aside to cool, reserving the cooking liquid.
8. When the artichokes have cooled, drizzle them with the oil from the pot. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Salanova Shrimp Salad with Avocado Remoulade Dressing

One bunch Salanova, washed and spun dry
1 pound large shrimp, peeled deveined and cooked
1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and chopped
1/2 cup Creole or Dijon mustard
1/3 cup ketchup
1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon finely chopped green garlic
Salt and few drops Tabasco

1. Arrange the Salanova and shrimp on salad plates.
2. In a blender or food processor, combine the avocado, mustard, ketchup, horseradish, lemon juice, paprika, mayonnaise and green garlic. Puree until almost smooth. Season with salt and Tabasco.
3. Drizzle over the shrimp and serve.

Avocado Dip for Chips or Crudites

Makes about 1 cup:
1 large ripe avocado
5 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup sour cream or Greek Style yogurt
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint leaves
Salt and cayenne pepper to taste

1. Combine the avocado, lemon juice, sour cream and mint leaves in a food processor or blender.
2. Puree, season with salt and cayenne. Serve with tortilla or pita chips, or fresh vegetables.

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Farmers’ Market Box April 22nd 2021

Dinner Party Menu: January

Thai Carrot and Yam Soup
Seared Ahi Tuna Salad with Blood Orange Vinaigrette
Bourbon Chocolate Bread Pudding with Bourbon Caramel Sauce

Since January is a time when Julie and I feel like eating a bit more healthily, we devised this menu with that in mind, but also with some suggestions for possible add-ons. The soup is based on a recipe that we enjoyed at our friend Laura’s house and she generously shared it. I love the combination of ingredients which produce a rich tasting and deep, nourishing flavour.

For the main course, we have a refreshing citrus-y salad, featuring blood oranges which are available in markets now. I like the addition of seared tuna, which connects to the Asian theme of the soup, but the salad can be prepared with or without the tuna, served as a side to chicken, or as an appetizer with the addition of crumbled feta, as photographed here.

The dessert pulls out all the stops – with such a healthy start to the meal, why not splurge on a comforting bread pudding? The recipe for the pudding is very simple and quick to put together and smells amazing when it’s in the oven. Make it late in the day and greet your guests with the aroma!

Thai Carrot and Yam Soup
The only adjustments I made to the original recipe were to use yams instead of sweet potatoes and 1 tablespoon, not 2, of red curry paste. I have included a recipe for vegetable broth but you can of course use store-bought.

1 tablespoon coconut oil
2 cups onion, peeled and diced
3 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon ginger, minced
1 tablespoon red curry paste, or to taste
4 cups vegetable broth, more if needed
¼ cup almond butter, room temperature
3 cups carrots, peeled and chopped
3 cups yams, peeled and chopped
salt and black pepper to taste, cayenne pepper to taste
Garnish suggestions: cheese straws, limes, roasted and chopped tamari almonds

Melt coconut oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion, garlic and ginger and sauté until the onion is translucent. Stir in the curry paste and cook and stir for one more minute.

In a small bowl, whisk together ½ cup of the broth with the almond butter until smooth. Add to the pot along with the remaining broth, carrots, yams and seasoning. Bring soup to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.

Cool the mixture slightly, then purée in batches in a blender. Return the soup to the pot, adding more vegetable broth if necessary and check the seasoning, adding more salt or pepper to taste.

Ladle hot soup into bowls and garnish as desired.
Makes 8 servings.

Vegetable Broth
1 tablespoon olive oil
5 cloves garlic, smashed
1” piece of ginger, sliced
2 large onions, unpeeled and chopped
3 ribs celery, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
8 cups water
2 bay leaves
A few sprigs of parsley and thyme

Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the garlic, ginger, onions, celery, and carrots. Cook until softened, about 5 minutes, stirring often. Add the water, bay leaves, parsley and thyme. Reduce heat to low and simmer, partially covered, for 45 minutes. Pour the broth through a fine mesh strainer into a large heat-proof bowl or pot and discard solids. Once the broth has cooled, transfer to airtight plastic containers and refrigerate it or put into freezer bags and store in the freezer. Makes about 6 cups.

Seared Ahi Tuna Salad with Blood Orange Vinaigrette

12 oz. ahi tuna
1½ tablespoons olive oil

1 small bulb fennel, trimmed and thinly sliced, about 1½ cups
4 blood oranges, peeled and sliced, cut slices in half (remove zest for vinaigrette before peeling)
½ cup fresh mint, finely sliced, more for garnish
1 large or 2 small avocados, peeled and cubed
1 small head radicchio, thinly sliced, about 1½ cups
1 small head lettuce, chopped, about 2½ cups

Season tuna with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a pan and sear tuna over medium high heat about 1½ minutes per side. Remove from heat and slice.

In a large bowl, mix fennel, oranges, ½ cup mint, avocado, radicchio and head lettuce. Toss with about ¾ of the dressing. Divide salad among 6 plates, top with sliced tuna and drizzle with remaining dressing. Garnish with mint. Serves 6-8

1 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons blood orange juice
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 shallot, minced
½ teaspoon lemon zest
½ teaspoon blood orange zest
½ cup olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste

Mix juices, vinegar, shallot and zest in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in olive oil and season to taste.

Bourbon Chocolate Bread Pudding with Bourbon Caramel Sauce

2 cups whole milk
4 eggs
⅓ cup bourbon
8 oz. 72% dark chocolate, chopped
4 cups day-old challah, cubed
¼ cup turbinado sugar, or brown sugar

Whisk milk, eggs and bourbon together in a large bowl. Add the chocolate, bread cubes and sugar. Toss to coat and set aside to soak for about 45 minutes. Stir once or twice while soaking. After soaking for about 40 minutes, preheat oven to 350ºF.

Pour mixture into a 1½ quart baking dish. Bake for 40-50 minutes or until the custard has set and the top of the pudding is slightly crispy. Serve warm or at room temperature with Bourbon Caramel Sauce or bourbon-flavoured whipped cream. Serves 8

Bourbon Caramel Sauce
1 cup sugar
¼ cup water
½ cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon bourbon
pinch of salt

Simmer sugar and water over medium heat, swirling the pan but not stirring for about 15 minutes or until the mixture is a rich amber colour. Watch closely as the caramelization happens quickly at the end. The photos below show the mixture just before it starts to caramelize, what it looks like when it is ready to come off the heat, and the finished product.

Remove pan from heat and very slowly add the cream, stirring. Add the bourbon and a pinch of salt and place back on the still warm burner for another minute and stir. Transfer sauce to a heat-proof dish or bottle and let cool. Store covered in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving. You can also microwave it for about 30 seconds to warm it.

Mashed Potatoes with Sage-Infused Brown Butter, Fresh Thyme, and Black Truffle Salt

One of the most important side dishes on the holiday table is the humble potato. Whether it’s au gratin, baked, roasted, or mashed, everyone loves potatoes, and we all have our favorites. My favorite is the old standby mashed potatoes, and this year I want to elevate the old recipe with some of my favorite additions browned butter, butter-fried fresh sage and thyme, and most importantly, a hint of black truffles.

Now, truffles can be polarizing while some will love the deep earthy flavors, others may perceive them as pungent. The secret is to use them in moderation and to know your audience. For the slightly more advanced palate, nothing compares to the rich flavor of truffles and though they can be quite expensive, it only takes a pinch or two to transform an entire dish. Truffles have an intensely earthy nature which naturally pairs with root vegetables of all sorts. Potatoes are a natural, but other root vegetables such as parsnips, celeriac, carrots, yams, beets, onions, shallots, garlic, and even fennel are all even more delicious with a dose of truffles.

Every year in Chicago during the late fall to early winter, when truffles are in season, Chicago restaurants begin rolling out their holiday menus featuring black winter truffles, which some chefs refer to as “the diamond of the kitchen” for their transformational ability. Although a top-grade whole truffle can easily cost $95 per ounce, very few home kitchens could justify or make use of such an investment. For the rest of us looking for prime grade truffle flavor, the Truffleist offers pure, prime-grade truffle salts, honey, and oils, which bring the flavor of fresh truffles to your kitchen.

For this mashed potatoes recipe, I’ll be using black truffle-laced French sea salt by the Truffleist. A 4oz. jar lasts a long time and is the perfect finishing salt for all kinds of dishes, especially a juicy steak.

Mashed Potatoes with Sage-Infused Brown Butter, Fresh Thyme, Black Truffle Salt

4lbs Yukon gold potatoes, washed
1 1/2 T Truffleist sea salt (potatoes need a lot of salt don’t be afraid to go heavy, this will bring out their buttery flavor).
1 stick unsalted butter, cubed and an additional 2T for topping.
1 1/2 cups 2% milk
8-12 fresh sage leaves, plus some for garnish
4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves stripped from stems, plus some for garnish
1/2 t freshly ground coarse black or white peppercorns
Pinch of additional sea salt, to taste

In a stockpot, cover potatoes with cold water and a pinch of sea salt. Bring to a vigorous boil and cook until soft, 18-20 minutes. In a saucepan, add the stick of butter and fresh sage, melting over medium heat. When the butter starts to become foamy, start whisking and watch for browning. Browned butter can easily go too far and become bitter, so watch carefully for the color to change to golden, then remove from heat and discard sage leaves. When potatoes are done, drain and return to stockpot. Using a potato masher, mash thoroughly while slowly incorporating milk. Once smooth, add the sage-infused brown butter, roasted garlic cloves (see preparation, below), Truffleist sea salt, and black or white pepper. Transfer to a serving bowl and stir in thyme leaves. Top with remaining butter, thyme, and sage leaves and crown with a few pinches of truffle salt. Serve immediately.

Roasted Garlic
1 large, fresh head of garlic
2 T Olive oil
Sea salt

Preheat oven to 400’F
To roast the garlic:

Peel off the papery outer layer, leaving the whole bulb intact. With a sharp knife, trim approximately 1/2” from the top of the cloves, exposing all of their interiors. Don’t take off too much. Wrap bottom half of bulb in aluminum foil, leaving the top exposed. Drizzle generously with olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt. Close the foil uptight and bake for 35 minutes until golden brown and soft when pressed. Cool and remove cloves from skins by gently squeezing each one out. An entire head should be the right amount for the batch of potatoes, but feel free to add and taste as you go.