Thursday, July 10, 2014

Salmon Halibut Fish Bake With Onion Garlic Crouton Topping

     I like fish.  I like cheese.  I like fish and cheese.  In Norwegian it goes like this.  Jeg liker fisk.  Jeg liker ost.  Jeg liker fisk og ost.  Sorry, it has been awhile since I practiced my Norwegian, and I couldn't resist.  This is a fun dish, because the most definitely Norwegian Jarlsberg cheese is nicely melted over the fish and there are crunchy oniony garlicy croutons on top.  It is also quite quick and easy to prepare.  In the summer it is nice to have a fast main course.  I served it with a cucumber, carrot, pineapple, and prune salad tossed with a mustard vinaigrette and a simple boiled potato.

Salmon Halibut Fish Bake With Onion Garlic Crouton Topping

(Serves 4)

2 12-oz. fillets of Salmon
2 12-oz. Fillets of Halibut
1/4 c. Plain Goat Yogurt
Salt and Pepper
10 oz. Jarlsberg Cheese grated
3 c. roughly torn pieces of Whole Wheat Bread
1 tsp. Onion Powder
1/2 tsp. Garlic Powder
1/2 tsp. Salt
2 T. Olive Oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Place the fish fillets in a 7 x 11 inch baking pan.  Spoon the yogurt on top of the fish and lightly salt and pepper them.  Distribute the cheese over the top evenly.  In a bowl, toss together the bread, onion powder, garlic powder, and salt.  Add the olive oil, and toss until the bread is coated.  It may seem as if you have not added enough oil, but refrain from adding more.  Just continue to toss gently and you will find it coats just fine.  Distribute the bread over the fish and bake for 20-25 minutes until the fish fillets read 145 degrees Fahrenheit halfway into the thickest part.  Serve warm.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Hunter Porter Stew

     This is one of the richest stews I have ever made.  It's ingredients remain distinctive and flavor a rich Porter broth.  The kielbasa gives it a spiciness, the cabbage and prunes a sweetness, and the mushrooms, especially the chanterelles, an earthiness that makes me think of the woods.  This dish is definitely company worthy!

Hunter Porter Stew

(Serves 6)

8 oz. Bacon cut into 1inch pieces
1 Yellow Onion cut into bite sized pieces
1 head Garlic peeled and roughly chopped
3 Beef Soup Bones
1 head fresh Green Cabbage sliced thinly
12 oz. fully cooked Kielbasa or other robust sausage cut into bite size chunks
3  cooked Hamburgers cut into 1inch chunks
25 oz. Sour Kraut drained from natural brine liquid
8 oz. King Oyster Mushrooms roughly chopped
6 oz. Button Mushrooms roughly chopped
1/2 oz. Dried Chanterelle Mushrooms (soaked 1/2 hour in warm water, drained and rinsed)
2 Bay Leaves
2 tsp. Peppercorns (crushed)
1 tsp. Salt
12 oz. Porter
6 oz. Prunes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Fry the bacon in a 9.5 quart Dutch oven on the stove top on medium heat until brown.  Remove bacon and set aside.  Remove and discard all but 2 tablespoons of bacon fat.  Add the onion, garlic, and soup bones.  Fry till onions are soft.  Add the cabbage and sauté till softened and the volume is decreased.  Add all the rest of the ingredients except for the prunes, and bring to a simmer.  There is very little liquid in this stew.  The vegetables will add more as it cooks and the broth will be tremendously flavorful.  Cover and braise in the oven for one hour.  Add the prunes, cover, and braise for another 30 minutes.  Serve with a whole grain bread.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Strawberry Yogurt Cream

     This is a refreshing summer recipe to make with crushed strawberries, plain goat yogurt, and the ever so slightly decadent, sour cream.  I add gelatin, and pour it into parfait glasses for a pretty presentation.

Strawberry Yogurt Cream

(Serves 6)

2 Packages Plain Gelatin
1 c. Boiling Water
1 3/4 c. Fresh Strawberries mashed with a potato masher
3 T. Sugar
3/4 c. Sour Cream
1/2 c. Plain Goat Yogurt

Place the gelatin in a 2 cup measuring cup.  Add the boiling water and stir until dissolved.  Mix the strawberries and sugar in a mixing bowl, then stir in the gelatin and water mixture.  Stir in the sour cream and yogurt until incorporated.  You may add more sugar at this point if you like.  Make sure you stir it until it is dissolved.  Pour into 6 parfait glasses and refrigerate for 2 1/2 hours until set.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Whole Wheat Flatbread With Soaked Grains

      I love to rip off pieces of flatbread  for munching on.  It can be used for dipping in olive oil or your favorite dips and pesto.  This is an easy bread to make, because it does not rise.  I use both whole wheat and bread flour for a whole grain delicious flavor.

Whole Wheat Flatbread With Soaked Grains

(Makes 2 (8x10-inch) Flatbreads)

1 1/2 c. Warm Water less 2 T.
2 T. Plain Goat Yogurt or Plain Cow Yogurt
3 T. Olive Oil
3 tsp. Sugar
1 1/2 tsp. Salt
3 1/4 c. Bread Flour
1 c. Whole Wheat Flour
Kosher Salt for sprinkling the top

     Place all ingredients into the mixing bowl of an electric mixer with a dough hook.  Mix at the lowest speed until the ingredients are almost fully incorporated.  Set the speed to the setting your mixer uses to knead the dough, and knead for 5 minutes until smooth and elastic.  Remove bowl from mixer and shape the dough into a ball, lightly oil with olive oil, and place back into the bowl.  Cover with plastic and place in the refrigerator for 7 hours or overnight.  Take the bowl out, and bring to room temperature in a warm place (about 2 hours).  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.  Split the dough into two balls.  Place on two greased cookie sheets, and roll out into 2 (8x10-inch) ovals with a small hand roller directly onto the sheet.  Sprinkle with a little flour if too sticky. Sprinkle with Kosher salt, and bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes until the bottom is golden brown.  Let cool, and serve at room temperature by ripping off chunks of the bread.  Eat as is or dip into olive oil or your favorite dip.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Pumpkin Seed, Onion Greens, and Garlic Pesto

     Today at the farmer's market, I brought home some young yellow onions that did not have their bulbs fully formed.  They were not scallions; they were what I would call summer onions.  The tops looked green and tender, so I thought of something special to make with them.  What about a pesto with the onion greens, garlic, and herbs from my garden?  The thyme and oregano are doing well, so I went outside and snipped off a handful of thyme and a sprig of oregano.  The oregano was quite strong in flavor, so I did not want as much of it as the thyme.  I used sprouted pumpkin seeds to offset the herbs and onion greens.  They add a slightly nutty flavor and texture, and are a good nut alternative for a pesto.  I paired the pesto with the red new potatoes I also brought home today.  There is something about summer produce that is such a joy to prepare and eat.

Clockwise from lower left: garlic, young onion greens, thyme, oregano 

Pumpkin Seed, Onion Greens, and Garlic Pesto

(Makes 1/2 cup)

3 10-inch Young Onion Greens chopped in 2 inch pieces
1/4 c. Fresh Thyme roughly chopped
2-3 Garlic Cloves roughly chopped
1 Sprig Fresh Oregano roughly chopped
3 T. Organic Sprouted Pumpkin Seeds
1 tsp. Salt
5 T. Olive Oil

Place all ingredients except the olive oil in a food processor.  Turn on the processor and slowly add the olive oil.  Continue processing until the mixture reaches desired consistency, stopping and unplugging the machine periodically to scrape the sides.  Scoop into a container, taste, and adjust the salt.

Serving suggestion:  Serve with boiled red new potatoes.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Puffy Pancakes

Puffy Pancakes

Puffy Pancakes are a wonderful way to start your day!  I like them because it has a little whole wheat flour and goat yogurt which gives a buttermilk-like flavor to the pancake.

1 c. All Purpose Flour
1/4 c. Whole Wheat Flour
1/2 tsp. Salt
1 T. Sugar
1 T. Baking Powder

1 Egg
1/4 c. Plain Goat Yogurt
1 1/4 c. Water
2 T. Light Olive Oil
Palm Oil for frying

Whisk together the dry ingredients and set aside. Whisk the egg, yogurt, water, and olive oil, then add to the dry ingredients. Stir just till moistened. Heat a fry pan and add a little palm oil (just enough to coat the bottom). Fry the pancakes till golden brown on each side. Serve warm.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Flourless Dark Chocolate Agave Cake - Recipe

     One of my friends asked me to create something with chocolate and agave.  I thought about it awhile, and the picture of a creamy dark chocolate cake kept popping into my mind.  So I decided to make a flourless dark chocolate agave cake for the true chocolate connoisseur.  For an out of this world experience and presentation pair it with sweetened English luxury clotted cream and fresh strawberries, which compliment the dark chocolate perfectly.

Flourless* Dark Chocolate Agave Cake

(Serves 12 pieces)

8 oz. Unsweetened Baking Chocolate Squares
1/2 c. Butter (1 stick)
1/2 c. Organic Blue Agave Nectar
1/4 c. Dark Rum
4 Eggs
Cocoa for dusting

12 Fresh Strawberries
1-2 tsp. Powdered Sugar
12 Oz. English Luxury Clotted Cream

     Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Grease a round baking pan with a 6 inch diameter and 2 inch height**, then place a circle of parchment paper on the bottom of the pan.  Break the chocolate into pieces and place it along with the butter into a heavy bottomed sauce pan on low heat or use a double boiler.  Stir the chocolate and butter constantly until melted.  Remove from the heat and set aside to cool to luke warm.  Place the chocolate mixture in a large bowl and quickly whisk in the agave nectar and rum.  Add the eggs and whisk as quickly as you can until it is incorporated and glossy.  Place the pan in a hot water bath 3/4 up the side of the pan and bake for 35 minutes until a cake tester comes out clean.  Remove from the oven, let cool for 5 minutes in the pan, and unmold onto a rack to cool completely.  Dust the top with cocoa using a flour shaker.  You may store the cake covered in plastic wrap in the refrigerator, but let it sit at room temperature about 1 1/2 hours to warm up before cutting it.

     Wash and pat the strawberries dry with a paper towel.  Cut each in several slices without going through the base and spread apart slightly.  Stir a small amount of powdered sugar and clotted cream together in a bowl.  Taste and adjust for desired sweetness.  Serve each slice with a dollop of sweetened clotted cream and a strawberry.

*Always check ingredient statements if you have diet restrictions
**I use Wilton Performance Cake Pans